Journal of the House of Lords: Volume 20, 1714-1717. Originally published by His Majesty's Stationery Office, London, 1767-1830.
This free content was digitised by double rekeying. All rights reserved.
DIE Jovis, 1 Septembris.
Ld. Visc. Rosse's Bill:
Hodie 3a vice lecta est Billa, intituled, "An Act to enable Richard Lord Viscount Rosse of the Kingdom of Ireland, notwithstanding his Nonage, to make a Jointure on Mary Viscountess Rosse his Wife, and a Settlement on his Issue Male, with Provision for Younger Children; and for other Purposes therein mentioned."
Message to H. C. with it, and Hoskyns' Bill.
Yule Vacance in Scotland Bill.
Middleton versus Balfour.
Counsel were this Day called in, and heard, upon the Petition and Appeal of Robert Middleton, Rector of St. Mary's in Colchester, in the County of Essex; as also upon the Answer of John Balfour of Fairnie Esquire put in thereunto; and withdrew.
E. Strafford impeached.
Who did, in the Name of that House and of all the Commons of Great Britain, impeach Thomas Earl of Strafford of high Crimes and Misdemeanors; and acquainted this House, "That the Commons had prepared Articles to maintain the said Charge, and commanded him to exhibit and leave the same with their Lordships."
Message from H. C. to return the River Kennet Bill.
To return the Bill, intituled, "An Act for making the River Kennet navigable, from Reading to Newbury, in the County of Berks;" and to acquaint this House, that they have agreed to their Lordships Amendments made thereto.
Bill for Relief of Sufferers by Fire, Message from H. C. for a Conference about:
To desire a Conference with this House, upon the Subject-matter of their Lordships Amendments to the Bill, intituled, "An Act for the Relief of Anne Milner, Thomas Colemore, William Hunt, William Parrot, and others, as to Customs of Goods burnt and destroyed by the late Fire in Thames Street, London."
Answer to H. C.
Middleton versus Balfour.
Ordered, That the Hearing of the Residue of the Cause, wherein Robert Middleton Rector of St. Mary's in Colchester in the County of Essex is Appellant, and Lieutenant Colonel John Balfour Respondent, be adjourned till To-morrow, at Twelve a Clock.
Articles of Impeachment against the E. of Strafford.
"Whereas His late Majesty King William the Third, of Ever-glorious Memory, out of His great Wisdom and tender Regard for His own Kingdoms and the Protestant Succession, and to vindicate the Honour of the Crown and Nation, then affronted by France, in proclaiming the Pretender King of Great Britain, after the French King had but lately before acknowledged His Majesty's Title to the same, as well as from a just Concern for the Preservation of the Liberties of Europe, against the growing Power of France, which was then become more formidable from the Duke of Anjou's having taken Possession of the entire Spanish Monarchy, did, upon the Advice and Request of both Houses of Parliament, in or about the Month of September. One Thousand Seven Hundred and One, enter into, make, and conclude, a Treaty with Leopold Emperor of Germany and The States General of the United Provinces; wherein, a strict Conjunction and Alliance amongst themselves being thought necessary for repelling the Greatness of the common Danger, it was, amongst other Things, agreed, "That there should be and continue, between the said Confederates, a constant, perpetual, and inviolable Friendship and Correspondence; and that each Party should be obliged to promote the Advantages of the other, and prevent all Inconveniencies and Dangers that might happen to them, as far as lay in their Power: That the said Allies, desiring nothing more earnestly than the Peace and general Quiet of all Europe, had adjudged, that nothing could be more effectual for the Establishment thereof, than the procuring an equitable and reasonable Satisfaction to His Imperial Majesty for His Pretensions to the Spanish Succession; and that the King of Great Britain and The States General might obtain a particular and sufficient Security for their Kingdoms, Provinces, and Dominions, and for the Navigation and Commerce of their Subjects: That it should not be permitted to either Party, when the War is once begun, to treat of Peace with the Enemy, unless jointly and by a Communication of Councils; and no Peace should be made, unless an equitable and reasonable Satisfaction for His Imperial Majesty, and a particular Security for the Kingdoms, Provinces, Dominions, Navigation, and Commerce, of His Majesty of Great Britain and The States General, be first obtained; and unless Care be taken, by fitting Security, that the Kingdoms of France and Spain shall never come and be united under the same Government, nor that one and the same Person shall be King of both Kingdoms." And whereas His said late Majesty King William and The States General, seriously considering that France was then become so formidable, from the Accession of Spain to the Duke of Anjou, that, in the Opinion of all the World, Europe was in Danger of losing her Liberty, and undergoing the heavy Yoke of universal Monarchy; and that the surest Means of effecting that Design were, to divide the King of Great Britain from The States General, for which Purpose all imaginable Efforts would be made; they therefore thought it necessary to unite in the strictest Manner that was possible; and, to that End, a defensive Treaty and Alliance was concluded and entered into between them, in or about November One Thousand Seven Hundred and One, wherein, amongst other Things, it was further agreed, "That, by the Alliance with the Emperor, made in September then last, particular Care being taken for the Recovery of The Spanish Low Countries out of the Hands of the Most Christian King, the said Consederates expressly engaged to aid one another with all their Forces for the Recovery of the same; and, in regard the principal Interest of the said Confederates consisted in the Preservation of the Liberties of Europe, that the beforementioned Treaty with the Emperor shall be faithfully and sincerely executed, and both Sides shall guarantee the same, and use their Endeavours to confirm and render it more strong from Time to Time: That, in making Peace, particular Care shall be taken of the Commerce and Traffic of both Nations, and also for their Security, as well in regard to The Low Countries, as the Countries adjacent: That, when the War is begun, the Confederates shall act in Concert, according to the Seventh and Eighth Articles of the Treaty of the Third of March One Thousand Six Hundred Sixty-seven-eight, between England and Holland, which was thereby renewed and confirmed; and no Peace nor Truce, or Suspension of Arms, shall be negotiated or made, but according to the Ninth and Tenth Articles of that Treaty; by which it was agreed, that, when the Two Allies came once to an open War, it shall be lawful for neither of them afterwards to come to any Cessation of Arms with him who shall be declared and proclaimed an Enemy, without it be done conjointly and with common Consent; that no Negotiation of Peace shall be set on Foot by one of the Allies, without the Concurrence of the other; that each Ally shall continually, and from Time to Time, impart to the other every Thing that shall pass in the said Negotiation; and shall stipulate with the common Enemy for the same Rights, Immunities, Exemptions, and Prerogatives, for his Ally, as he should do for himself, if so be the said Allies do not agree to the contrary." And whereas the French King, having got Possession of a great Part of the Spanish Dominions, exercised an absolute Authority over that Monarchy, having seized Milan and The Spanish Low Countries by His Armies, and made Himself Master of Cadiz and of the Entrance into The Mediterranean, and of the Ports of The Spanish West Indies, by His Fleets, every where designing to invade the Liberties of Europe, and to obstruct the Freedom of Navigation and Commerce; and, instead of giving the Satisfaction that was justly expected, had proceeded to further Violences and Indignities; and, having influenced Spain to acknowledge the Pretender, and thereby to concur with Him in the said Affront; Her late Sacred Majesty Queen Anne, taking Notice, "that She found Herself obliged, for maintaining the public Faith, for vindicating the Honour of the Crown, and to prevent the Mischiefs which all Europe were threatened with, to declare War against France and Spain," did accordingly, in the Month of May One Thousand Seven Hundred and Two, in the most public and solemn Manner proclaim the same; as His Imperial Majesty and The States General did likewise do, in or about the said Month of May, in Pursuance of the beforementioned Treaties. And whereas many Kings, Princes, and States of Europe, being invited by the said Grand Alliance, and relying on the Faith thereof, did afterwards become Parties to the said Confederate War against France and Spain; and, in the Treaty entered into in or about the Month of May One Thousand Seven Hundred and Three, between His Imperial Majesty, the Queen of Great Britain, The States General, and the King of Portugal, it was, amongst other Things, expressly stipulated, "That no Peace or Truce shall be made, but by the mutual Consent of all the Confederates; nor shall any at any Time be made, whilst the Second Grandson of the Most Christian King, by the Dauphin or any other Prince of the Line of France, continued in Spain." And whereas, to give the greatest Strength that was possible to the Union so necessary to both Nations, Her late Majesty and The States, by a Treaty in the Month of June One Thousand Seven Hundred and Three, renewed and confirmed all Treaties and Alliances then subsisting between them; and, to the End a just and reasonable Peace might the better be obtained, that might establish the Repose and Tranquillity of Europe, it was agreed, that neither of the said Allies should make a Suspension, of Arms or a Peace with France or Spain; but in Conjunction and by common Consent. And whereas the said War was for several Years carried on with Vigour and Unanimity, at a vast Expence of Blood and Treasure; for the Support of which, on the Part of Great Britain, many Millions were granted by Parliament, who, on many Occasions, expressed their Sense of the Justice of it, and frequently gave their humble Advice to the Throne, "That no Peace could be safe, honourable, or lasting, so long as Spain and The West Indies continued in any Branch of the House of Bourbon." And whereas the just Cause of Her Majesty and Her Allies, in Defence of the common Liberty, and in Vindication of the Honour of Her Crown of Great Britain, was favoured by the Divine Providence with unparalleled Success and signal Victories, whereby, as well as by the Wisdom and Unanimity of their Councils, the Reputation of the Confederate Arms was highly advanced, and Great Britain was esteemed the Guardian of the Liberties of Europe. And whereas, from the prosperous Condition of the Affairs of the Allies, nothing remained, in all human Appearance, but that they should reap the Fruits of all their Victories, in a speedy, just, honourable, and lasting Peace; and on the other Hand nothing was left to raise the Hopes of the Enemy, whereby to defeat that happy Prospect, but His secret Endeavours to disunite the Consederacy. And whereas divers evil-minded Persons, Enemies to the true Interests of their own Country as well as to the common Liberties and Welfare of Europe, having, by many wicked Arts and base Insinuations, obtained Access to Her late Majesty Queen Anne, and being admitted into Her Councils and into Places of the highest Trust, and having formed a wicked and treacherous Correspondence with the Emissaries of France, and set on Foot a private and destructive Negotiation of Peace, thereby intending to weaken and dissolve the Consederacy, which had so long and happily subsisted, between Her Majesty and Her good and faithful Allies, to the Honour and Safety of the Nation; had prevailed upon Her said late Majesty, for that Purpose, to declare Her Resolution of entering into a Treaty of Peace with the common Enemy, against the Consent and Opinion of all Her Majesty's Allies; and also to appoint John then Lord Bishop of Bristol and Thomas Earl of Strafford Her Plenipotentiaries, to transact the same at Utrecht. And whereas Her Sacred Majesty, in pursuance of the Treaties She stood engaged in, and of Her Declaration in the Month of April One Thousand Seven Hundred and Eleven to the Grand Pensionary and the other Ministers of Holland, being still determined, in making Peace as in making War, to act in perfect Concert with Her Allies, and, in Conjunction with them, to demand and procure from France a just Satisfaction for all their Pretensions, according to, and in Performance of, the many solemn Treaties and Alliances then subsisting between Her Majesty and them, did, in Pursuance thereof, by Her Instructions under the Sign Manual, dated the Twentyfirst of October One Thousand Seven Hundred and Eleven, to him the said Thomas Earl of Strafford, Her Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary to The States General, direct him, "That, during the Course of the then intended Negotiation of Peace, it must be the most careful Endeavour and the fixed Principle of all the Confederates, to hold fast together, in order to obtain from the Enemy the utmost which could be hoped for in the present Circumstances of Affairs; and that he might assure the Consederates, that Her Majesty on Her Part would firmly adhere to that Rule; and that She was so far from making Peace without the Concurrence of The States General, that She had declared Her firm Resolution, not to make it without their Satisfaction:" And also, by Her Instructions under the Sign Manual to the said then Bishop of Bristol and him the said Thomas Earl of Strafford, Her Plenipotentiaries, to treat of a good and general Peace, Her said Majesty, amongst other Things, did direct them, "Upon their Arrival at Utrecht, to concert with the Ministers of the Allies, in what Manner it might be most proper to open the Conferences, and what Method to observe in the Progress of the Treaty; upon that and all other Occasions, earnestly to represent to those Ministers the great Importance of appearing united; and, for that Reason, to recommend to them, that, if any Difference or Dispute should arise, the same should be accommodated amongst themselves, that France might have no Hold to break in upon them; but, on the contrary, whenever they meet the Enemies Ministers in the Congress, every Opinion that is delivered, and every Instance that is made, may be backed by the concurrent Force of the whole Confederacy: That, if it should be thought proper to begin by the Disposition of the Spanish Monarchy, they were to insist, that the Security and reasonable Satisfaction, which the Allies expected, and which His Most Christian Majesty had promised, could not be obtained, if Spain and The West Indies be allotted to any Branch of the House of Bourbon." Notwithstanding all which Premises;
"He the said Thomas Earl of Strafford, being of Her Majesty's Privy Council, and Her Ambassador Extraordinary to The States General, and appointed One of Her Plenipotentiaries to treat with the Ministers of France, of a good and general Peace, in Concert with the Ministers of Her Majesty's Allies, who for that Purpose were assembled at Utrecht, with those of France, with full Powers to transact the same; having no Regard to the true Ends of his said Commissions and Powers, to the Honour or Safety of Her Majesty or Her Kingdoms, to the many solemn Engagements She was under to the old and faithful Allies of this Nation, or to the common Liberties of Europe; but being devoted to the Interest and Service of the French King, the then common Enemy, in Defiance of the Tenor of the several Treaties beforementioned, or some of them, as well as of the frequent Advices of Parliament, and the many Declarations of Her Majesty from the Throne; but more particularly in Defiance of the solemn and mutual Assurances which had been so lately renewed between Her Majesty and The States General, to act in perfect Concert with each other, in making Peace as in making War, and of the several Instructions from Her Majesty under the Sign Manual to him the said Earl in Pursuance thereof; was not only wanting in his Duty and Trust to Her Majesty, by not advising against, and as far as was in his Power by not opposing, the going into any private separate Negotiation with France; but, on the contrary, when a separate, dishonourable, and destructive Negotiation of Peace was entered into, between the Ministers of Great Britain and France, without any Communication thereof to Her Majesty's Allies, according to the several Treaties; he the said Earl did not only take upon himself, and presume, from Time to Time, to advise and exhort that the same should be continued and carried; but did likewise frequently concert private and separate Measures with the Ministers of France, in order to impose upon and deceive Her Majesty's good Subjects and Her Allies, and was instrumental in promoting the said separate Negotiation, exclusive of all the Allies, and to their manifest Prejudice and Detriment. And further, he the said Earl, when the Ministers of France, at Utrecht, refused to answer in Writing, and on many other Occasions, proceeded in a fallacious and unjustifiable Manner, in transacting the Negotiations of Peace; was not only wanting in his Duty, in not representing to Her Majesty and Her Ministers against the same, and in not supporting in the Manner he ought to have done Her Majesty's good Allies in their reasonable Demands from France; but, on the contrary, commended the French Prudence in taking such Measures; and even suggested himself the Methods for France to make Use of, to create Dissentions amongst the Allies, and separate Negotiations between each of the Allies and France, thereby to dissolve the whole Confederacy. By which wicked and treacherous Practices, he the said Earl prostituted the Honour of Her Majesty and the Imperial Crown of these Realms, and grossly violated his Powers and Instructions, the many Treaties which Her Majesty then stood engaged in to Her Allies, and the repeated Assurances which the said Earl had, by Her Majesty's Order and in Her Name, given to the said Allies, to act in perfect Concert with them throughout the whole Negotiations of Peace; thereby rendering the Design of the Consederacy, and the mutual Support expected from the same, altogether useless, and giving up the Affairs of Europe into the Hands of France.
"Whereas the maintaining a perfect Union and good Correspondence between Her late Majesty and the Illustrious House of Hanover was of the utmost Importance, for preserving to these Kingdoms the invaluable Blessings of their Religion and Civil Liberties, by securing the Succession to the Crown to a Race of Protestant Princes ever renowned for their great Justice and Clemency, and thereby defeating the traiterous Designs of the Pretender; and, for that Purpose, the great Wisdom of divers Parliaments, which had fixed and confirmed the said Succession, had also laid the Obligation of an Oath upon the Subjects of these Realms, to support and maintain the same to the utmost of their Power; he the said Thomas Earl of Strafford, not regarding the many ill Consequences to Her Majesty and these Kingdoms, which would naturally ensue from a Disunion or Coolness of Affection between Princes so nearly allied in Blood and Interest, instead of doing what in him lay to prevent the same, did, on the contrary, in His Letters from Holland to Her Majesty's Ministers of State in Great Britain, by divers false Representations and scurrilous Reflections upon His present most Gracious Majesty, then Elector of Hanover, endeavour to alienate Her Majesty's Affections from His said Electoral Highness, and to create or widen fatal Differences or Misunderstandings between Them: And when, by the wicked and pernicious Advice of him the said Thomas Earl of Strafford and divers other evil Counsellors, Her late Majesty was at last prevailed upon to make a fatal Cessation of Arms with the then common Enemy, without any Concert with His said Electoral Highness, and against the Consent, and contrary to the most earnest Representations, of all the Allies; for the Execution of which, he the said Earl was sent over to the Army in The Netherlands, where the (fn. 1) Generals of the Auxiliaries paid by Her Majesty, whose Honour and Consciences would not permit them to abandon the Confederates and leave them as a Sacrifice to France, refused to withdraw with the Duke of Ormonde, without particular Orders from their respective Masters; which Proceedings of the Consederate Generals being wickedly represented by the said evil Counsellors, in Conjunction with the Ministers and Emissaries of France, as an Indignity offered to Her Sacred Majesty; he the said Thomas Earl of Strafford, to create Uneasinesses and Dissension between Her late Majesty and His then Electoral Highness, did, by his Letter, on or about the Seventeenth of July One Thousand Seven Hundred and Twelve, to Her Majesty's then Secretary of State, maliciously and wickedly suggest and affirm, "That the said Separation of the Consederate Generals from the Duke of Ormonde ought to be imputed to His said Electoral Highness." And further, he the said Earl, by frequently affirming, and sometimes in the most solemn Manner, to the Ministers of His said Electoral Highness as well as others, the most notorious and manifest Untruths, contrary to the Intentions and Interest of Her Majesty, and vainly intending thereby to deceive and impose upon His said Electoral Highness and the rest of Her Majesty's good and faithful Allies in Matters of the highest Importance; and particularly, by solemnly affirming, on or about the Sixteenth of July One Thousand Seven Hundred and Twelve, to Monsieur Buleau, General of the Hanover Forces, and the rest of the Confederate Generals, "That Her Majesty had made no Truce with France;" whereas he the said Earl then well knew the same was made and concluded several Weeks before; did thereby, as well as by all the beforementioned Proceedings, not only prostitute and dishonour the high Characters he was then invested with, but, as far as in him lay, did dissolve the mutual Confidence and good Understanding so necessary to be maintained between Her said late Majesty and the Illustrious House of Hanover, for the Safety and Prosperity of Great Britain, and the common Liberty of Europe.
"Whereas, in the pernicious Negotiations of Peace carried on by him the said Earl and other evil Counsellors with the Ministers of France, the French King had proposed to acknowledge Her Majesty's Title to the Crown of these Realms, and the Protestant Succession in the Illustrious House of Hanover, when the Peace should be signed between Great Britain and France, and not before: Whereupon the House of Lords, by an humble Address to Her Majesty, on the Fifteenth of February One Thousand Seven Hundred and Eleven, begged Leave to represent their just Indignation at that dishonourable Treatment of Her Majesty; as also their utmost Resentment at the Terms of Peace offered to Her Majesty and Her Allies by the Plenipotentiaries of France; for which Addresses Her Majesty was pleased to return them Her hearty Thanks, for the Zeal they had therein expressed for Her Honour: He the said Earl was not only wanting in his Duty to Her Majesty, and Zeal for the Protestant Succession, in not advising Her Majesty against treating with France upon such dishonourable Terms; but did himself, with other evil Counsellors, privately, wickedly, and traiterously, concert and agree with the Ministers of France, that the said Proposals, so derogatory to the Dignity of Her Majesty, and dangerous to these Kingdoms, should be the Conditions upon which France would agree to treat of a Peace with Great Britain. And further, he the said Earl, in Contempt and Defiance of the Judgement of the House of Peers, which had received Her Majesty's gracious Approbation, and acting the Part of an Emissary of France instead of a Plenipotentiary of Great Britain, being thereunto encouraged, and founding his Presumption on a Letter to the then said Bishop of Bristol and him the said Earl, from Henry Saint John Esquire, then Principal Secretary of State, on the Sixteenth of February One Thousand Seven Hundred and Eleven, the next Day after the said Address of the House of Peers was made, and informing them of the Indignation expressed in Great Britain at the Offers of France, but that by the Management of Master Thomas Harley (then Secretary of the Treasury) the House of Commons was perfectly and absolutely secured to the Measures of Peace; did wickedly, deceitfully, and perfidiously, concert and agree with the Ministers of France, at Utrecht, that the said French Ministers should write a collusive Letter to him the said Earl and the then said Bishop of Bristol, wherein Her Majesty should be styled Queen of Great Britain; which Letter was not to be made any Use of at Utrecht, or taken as an Acknowledgement by France of Her Majesty's Title to the Crown; but was agreed to be transmitted to Great Britain, thereby to deceive and impose upon Her Majesty and the Parliament, as if France had then actually acknowledged the same: Which said Letter was accordingly written by the Ministers of France, and transmitted to Great Britain by him the said Earl; whereby Her Majesty, the Parliament, and the whole Nation, were most grossly and scandalously abused, and drawn in to the said destructive Measures of Peace, to the great Dishonour of Her Majesty and these Kingdoms, and to the apparent Danger of the Protestant Succession.
"That he the said Thomas Earl of Strafford, in Defiance of the many Treaties between Her Majesty and Her Allies, for the Recovery of the Monarchy of Spain to the House of Austria, thereby to preserve a due Balance of Power in Europe; and in Contempt of the Advice and Opinion of Parliament, "That no Peace could be safe, honourable, or lasting, so long as Spain and The West Indies continued in any Branch of the House of Bourbon;" and also in direct Violation of Her Majesty's Instructions of the Twenty-third of December One Thousand Seven Hundred and Eleven, in Pursuance thereof; whereby he the said Earl was expressly commanded, "To insist, in the Conferences of Peace, with the Ministers of France, that the Security and reasonable Satisfaction which the Allies expected, and which His Most Christian Majesty had promised to grant, could not be obtained, if Spain and The West Indies be allotted to any Branch of that House;" did not only presume to treat about the Peace with the Ministers of France, without insisting, as he ought to have done, that Spain and The West Indies should not be allotted to the said House of Bourbon; but also, when the Ministers of His Imperial Majesty and of the King of Portugal, in Conformity to the mutual Obligations and Treaties between Her Majesty and them and with each other, demanded of France, "that Spain and The West Indies should be restored to the House of Austria;" and requested him the said Earl, "to join with them, to strengthen that Demand," did decline and refuse to do the same: By which persidious and unwarrantable Practices of him the said Thomas Earl of Strafford, incurable Jealousies and Discords were created between Her Majesty and Her Allies; that mutual Confidence, which had so long and so successfully been cultivated between them, and which was so necessary for their common Safety, was absolutely dissolved; the just Balance of Power in Europe was wickedly betrayed; and apparent Advantages were given to the common Enemy, to impose what Terms of Peace he should think fit upon Her Majesty and the whole Confederacy.
"Whereas Her late Majesty, on the Seventh of December One Thousand Seven Hundred and Eleven, having earnestly recommended from the Throne, "That Provision might be made for an early Campaign, in order to carry on the War with Vigour, and as the best Way to render the Treaty of Peace effectual;" and accordingly Supplies were granted, and Magazines provided at a great Expence; and, in Pursuance thereof, Her Majesty having given early Assurances to Her Allies of Her sincere Intentions, and likewise expressly instructed Her General the Duke of Ormonde, not only to renew the same Assurances, and declare Her Resolution of pushing on the War with the utmost Vigour, but to concert with the Generals of the Allies the proper Measures for entering upon Action; which Assurances were accordingly given by the said Duke, and the Consederate Army was thereupon ordered to be assembled, which at that Time was the strongest that had been in the Service during the whole Course of the War, and greatly superior to that of the Enemy: Notwithstanding which Premises, he the said Thomas Earl of Strafford, then of Her Majesty's Privy Council, being informed of the reasonable Prospect, which, by the Blessing of God, the Army of the Consederates then had, of gaining new Conquests over the Army of France; in order to disappoint the Expectations of the Allies, and to give Success to the secret and wicked Negotiations then carrying on by himself and other evil Counsellors with the Ministers of France, on divers very false and groundless Suggestions and Allegations, and in Violation of many Treaties then subsisting between Her Majesty and The States General, as well as several other Princes, at several Times, and particularly by his Letter of the Thirtieth of April One Thousand Seven Hundred and Twelve, to Henry Viscount Bolingbroke, then Henry St. John Esquire, One of Her Majesty's Principal Secretaries of State, did wickedly and treacherously suggest and advise, that a Cessation of Arms should be made with France, by Her Majesty, without and even against the Consent of Her good Allies and Confederates: In Pursuance of which wicked Counsels and Advices, Directions were afterwards privately sent, in Her Majesty's Name, to the Duke of Ormonde, in Flanders, to avoid engaging in any Siege, or hazarding a Battle, till further Orders, although nothing had been then settled in the said private Negotiations for the Interest and Security of Great Britain. And further, he the said Thomas Earl of Strafford, at that Time also of Her Majesty's Privy Council, did advice Her late Majesty, that he himself should be sent, and accordingly he was afterwards sent, from England, to the Army under the Duke of Ormonde in Flanders, with Directions, in Her Majesty's Name, to cause a Cessation of Arms to be made and proclaimed between Her Majesty's and the French Army, and a Separation to be made by the Troops of Great Britain from the Consederate Army; which were accordingly performed and executed, by the Advice and Direction of him the said Earl, without the Consent, and contrary to the earnest Representations of Her Majesty's Consederates, and in open Violation and Defiance of the many Treaties then subsisting between Her Majesty and Her good and faithful Allies: By which wicked and perfidious Counsels and Practices of him the said Thomas Earl of Strafford, the Progress of the victorious Arms of the Consederates was stopped, and a most favourable Opportunity lost for conquering the Enemy; all Hopes of Confidence between Her Majesty and Her Allies were entirely destroyed, and the French King made absolute Master of the Negotiations of Peace.
"That he the said Thomas Earl of Strafford having, in Concert with other false and evil Counsellors, wickedly advised and procured the said fatal Cessation of Arms, and likewise obtained for France the Separation of the Troops of Great Britain from the Confederate Army; in further Execution of his treacherous Purposes, to advance and promote the Interests of France; and being determined, as far as in him lay, not only to render all furture Correspondence and good Harmony between Her Majesty and The States General utterly impracticable; but designing, by all possible Means, to weaken and distress the said States, in order to bring them under an absolute Necessity of complying and submitting to the Measures of France; and well knowing that taking Possession of Ghent and Bruges was the readiest Means of effecting the same; did wickedly and treacherously advise, that a Party of the Queen's Troops should be sent to march through some of the Towns belonging to The States General; in Hopes, that the Commanders of the said Towns, incensed by such unjust and unnecessary Provocations, and through the Apprehensions of the ill Consequences that such Attempts and Proceedings might subject them to, would be induced to refuse them Admittance, and thereby give a Pretence for putting in Execution the perfidious Desigus and Resolutions which had been concerted by him the said Earl, and other evil Counsellors, with the Ministers of France: In Pursuance of which wicked Advice, a Party of Her Majesty's Troops, was accordingly sent with Orders to march through some of the fortified Towns belonging to The States General; and, on Pretence of their being denied Passage through the same, the said treacherous and destructive Design was immediately put in Execution, and Ghent and Bruges were seized upon by the Troops of Great Britain; whereby, all Means of Communication between Holland and the Confederate Army being entirely cut off, or put into the Hands of those who had so lately and shamefully betrayed the common Cause, apparent Advantages and Encouragement were given to the French Army, and Her Majesty's good and faithful Allies were deterred from forming or prosecuting any Designs against the common Enemy; since the same could not be put in Execution without their Knowledge and Consent, who, on many Occasions, had given the most evident Proofs of their Disaffection to the Confederates, and of their firm Adherence to the Interests of France. All which Crimes and Misdemeanors were committed and done by him the said Earl, against our late Sovereign Lady the Queen, Her Crown and Dignity, the Peace and Interest of this Kingdom, and in Breach of the several Trusts reposed in him the said Earl; and he the said Earl of Strafford was of Her late Majesty's Privy Council, Her Ambassador Extraordinary to The States General, and One of Her Plenipotentiaries, to treat of a good and general Peace with France, during the Time that all and every the Crimes before set forth were done and committed. And the said Knights, Citizens, and Burgesses, by Protestation, saving to themselves the Liberty of exhibiting at any Time hereafter any other Accusation or Impeachment against the said Thomas Earl of Strafford, and also of replying to the Answer that the said Thomas Earl of Strafford shall make unto the said Articles, or any of them; or of offering Proof of the Premises, or any other Impeachments or Accusations that shall be exhibited by them, as the Case shall (according to the Course of Parliament) require; do pray, that the said Thomas Earl of Strafford be put to answer the said Crimes and Misdemeanors, and receive such condign Punishment as the same shall deserve; and that such Proceedings, Examinations, Trials, and Judgements, may be upon every of them had and used, as are agreeable to Law and Justice."
E. Strafford's Requests, and Order thereon.
And requesting a Copy of the said Articles; and, That the Papers delivered by him to either of the Principal Secretaries of State may be restored to him; without which, it will be impossible for him to make his just Defence; and that he may have such sufficient Time for answering to the said Articles as this House shall think fit:"
Then, his Lordship's Second Request being taken into Consideration; and, after Debate, and reading the Petition of the Earl of Oxford of the Eighth Day of August last, and the Order of this House of the Thirteenth of the same Month, made after searching Precedents in relation to the Petition of the said Earl of Oxford:
Ordered, That the said Earl of Strafford have Leave to cause Copies to be taken of all Journals of Parliament; of Public Treaties, referred to in any of the Articles exhibited against him, or the Preamble thereof; of all other Records whatsoever; and also of all such Papers as were delivered up by the said Earl, which are, or whereof any Copies now are, in the Secretaries Office, or in the Hands of any of the Clerks of the Privy Council; and that his Lordship have a Month's Time for putting in his Answer to the said Articles.