Journal of the House of Lords: Volume 3, 1620-1628. Originally published by His Majesty's Stationery Office, London, 1767-1830.
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DIE Martis, videlicet, 11 die Decembris,
(fn. 1) Ca
Women convicted of small Felonies.
Sir John Bourchier.
The House being put in Mind of the Petition of Sir John Bourchier, and the Order thereupon made Yesterday Morning; and being put into a Committee, to the End it might be the more freely discussed what Questions should be propounded to the Witnesses to be produced touching the hasty Hearing of the Petitioner's Cause by the Lord Keeper, as is alledged in the Petition; and the said Question being agreed on, and the House re-assumed again, the said Sir John Bowchier was brought to the Bar; and, being demanded, "Whether he was fully heard?"
He answered, "I conceived I was not fully heard, for none of the Witnesses examined for me were read; and an Explication of an Award made by the Lord Chief Baron, by Order of that Court, in this Cause, was required by my Counsel to be read, and was refused."
He answered, "My Counsel called for One Witness, touching the Explanation of the Award made by the Lord Chief Baron. I delivered it to my Attorney to be read, but it was not read; and my Lord Keeper published his Decree immediately. The Name of that Witness is Samuel Peacocke."
Then the Petitioner desired to speak for himself; shewed that he was an earnest and humble Suitor to the Lord Keeper to have his Cause heard again; and produced a Petition to his Lordship exhibited the Fifth of November last, and one Letter from him to his Lordship dated the 24th of November, and another Letter to his Lordship dated the 26th of November last, with his Lordship's several Answers to the same; the which were all read.
Whereupon Mr. Justice Chamb'leyne declared to the House, That himself and Mr. Justice Hutton were called (the Fifth of November) to assist the Lord Keeper, in the Hearing of Sir John Bourchier's Cause; that the Matter was fully opened on both Sides; the Cause was stated, and Consideration had of all Proofs produced on both Sides, and fully heard for an Hour and an Half and more. That Four Witnesses were heard, videlicet, Two on the Part of Sir John Bourchier, and Two on the other Side; and as touching the Award of the Lord Chief Baron, he said, it appeared, that the Lord Chief Baron, Anno 7° Jacobi Regis, did only mediate the Matter; and the Parties, agreeing among themselves, put the same in Writing. That a Decree, made Anno 10° Jacobi Regis, was in Favour of the Petitioner, in respect of the same Award; and that the Lord Keeper demanding of him and Mr. Justice Hutton, whether the Explanation of the said Award were (at the said Hearing) fit to be read or no; they certified the Negative; and our Opinion being demanded, and signified of the Cause, the Lord Keeper was pleased to add an Hundred Pounds more to the Petitioner than we thought fit. And, in the Conclusion, he justified his Actions of that Cause to be according to his Conscience, and as he was ready to answer it unto God.
The Lord Archbishop of Cant. signified, That Mr. Justice Hutton (who is now absent) did, at the Committee, the Sixth of this December, concur in Substance with Mr. Justice Chamberleyne, touching the Hearing of the Petitioner's Cause.
The Lord Chief Baron also declared, That (as touching the said Award) he only treated by the Way of Mediation; and the Parties, agreeing amongst themselves, put the same in Articles; that he was much pressed by an Order of the late Lord Chancellor Verulam, to explain the said Award, which he did, and doth not remember the Substance of the said Explanation.
Witnesses sworn and examined in his Cause.
Richard Dorington, the other Register, (fn. 2) sworn and examined.
He answered, "I do conceive this Cause was Two Hours in Hearing, from near Eleven to near One, and no Cause heard but that of Sir John Bourchier's. The Notes that I took of this Cause are Seven Sheets of Paper and better."
He answered, "The Depositions of Two Men, on Sir John Bourchier's Part, were read; videlicet, John Sydaham, and Henry Mompesson, and were called for by Sir John Bourchier's Counsel (or by himself) on his Behalf."
He answered, "I remember not any Thing else refused, but the Explanation of the Lord Chief Baron's Award (which was set aside by an Order), and Sir Robert Riches Report; and they were not much pressed to be read, to the best of my Knowledge."
He answered, "As I remember, Two Witnesses on Mompesson's Part, and one Witness on Sir John Bourchier's Side, were read; but I, being busy in Reading, took no Notes of that Day, and cannot directly remember what was done."
These Depositions taken, and the Examinants withdrawn, Sir John Bourchier was again brought to the Bar; and being required to name what Witnesses called for on his Part were refused to be read, he could name none that he urged to be heard, but Samuel Peacocke, touching the Explanation of the Lord Chief Baron's Award; but said, that he had some Fifteen Witnesses besides, which he did not then urge to have heard; and humbly desired a favourable Hearing of the Merits of his Cause.
The House, having deliberately considered of the Petition of Sir John Bourchier, touching the hasty Hearing of his Cause, and of the said Depositions, and his Answers; yet, before their Lordships would conclude any Thing thereon, the said Sir John Bourchier was again called to the Bar; and being demanded, "Whether, if he hath longer Time given him by the House, he can produce any stronger Witnesses, or further Proofs, to prove that his Cause was not fully heard (according to his Petition)?"
He answered, "I hope I shall not be put to that, for it will be a very hard Thing for me to bring any Man to speak what is contradicted by my Lord Keeper. And renewed his humble Desire, that his Cause may be heard."
Lord Keeper acquitted of a precipitate Hearing in this Cause.
The Petitioner being withdrawn, and this his Answer being duly weighed, it was put to the Question, Whether, in this Cause of Sir John Bourchier, the Lord Keeper is to be freed of any precipitate or hasty Hearing, as is alledged in the Petition, or no?