Journal of the House of Lords: Volume 5, 1642-1643. Originally published by His Majesty's Stationery Office, London, 1767-1830.
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DIE Lunæ, videlicet, 5 die Decembris.
The Earl of Manchester, Speaker.
E. of Warwick's Cause about the Post-Office.
Complaint (fn. 1) was made, "That whereas the Order of this House was, the 2nd of this Instant, That the Mails of Letters should be brought unto the Earl of Warwicke; and that a Man of Mr. Prideaux, contrary to the Orders of this House, hath seized upon the Mails, under Pretence of an Order of the House of Commons."
An Affidavit was read, as followeth:
"Robert Briscoe maketh Oath, and saith, That John Brisco, this Deponent's Father, Post-master at Barnet, together with this Deponent, having received a Warrant, made by the Lords in Parliament, the Second Day of this Month, to bring the Mails of Letters to such Place as the Earl of Warwicke, or his Deputies of the Letter Office, should appoint; and having also received Warrant from the Deputy of the said Earl, to seize the Mails with Letters coming from Chester, did, upon the 4th of this Month, meet with the said Mail at St. Albones, in the Custody or Possession of of one James Hickes, now or late Mr. Burlamachie's Servant; Edward Roden, who affirmed himself to be the Servant of one Mr. Prideaux; and one Edward Johnson, a Servant to John Castlon, Post-master at Barbican; and did shew them the said Order of the Lords, and required them to deliver unto them, this Deponent's Father and himself, the said Mail with Letters, which the said Hickes, Roden, and the other, refused to do; but shewed unto this Deponent, and his said Father, an Order of the House of Commons, dated the 3d of this Month, which did Order the said Mail to be carried unto the said Mr. Prideaux, commanding all Justices of Peace and others to permit the said Mail to pass without any Restraint or Hindrance."
Jurat. 5 Decembris, 1642.
Also a State of the whole Cause was read. (Here enter it.)
Conference to be had with the H. C. about this Dispute between the E. of Warwick and Mr. Prideaux, relative to the Inland Post-Office.
The House taking this Business into Consideration; in regard Mr. Prideaux is a Member of the House of Commons, this House Resolved, To have a Conference with the House of Commons, and acquaint them with the other Carriage of this Business; and to know of the House of Commons, whether they have given any such Order, to supersede the Order of this House; and, if they have not, then to desire that they would Order the Earl of Warwicke to have Satisfaction herein.
Message to the H. C. for it.
A Message was sent to the House of Commons, by Serjeant Glanvile and Dr. Aylott:
To desire a present Conference, touching the Inland Letter Office.
George Kirke, Gentleman of the Robes, Petition for Money from the Mint.
Upon reading the Petition of George Kirke, Esquire, Gentleman of His Majesty's Robes; shewing, "That he having an Order of the Parliament, to Order One Thousand Pounds to be paid out of the Coinagemoney in The Tower of London; yet he cannot receive the same, by reason of an Order of Parliament, dated the 24th of November, that all the Coinage shall be paid and delivered to Mr. Cornelius Holland, for the Expences of His Majesty's Children who remain in London: Wherefore desires that their Lordships would give Order to the Warden of the Mint, for the Payment of the said Thousand Pounds, there being Sixteen Thousand Pounds more than will discharge these Two Months last past."
Ordered, That the Earl of Holland shall speak with Mr. Cornelius Holland, to know whether there is more Money in the Mint than will discharge the Expences of the King's Children; and to report the same to this House.
The Messengers return this Answer from the House of Commons:
Answer from the H. C.
That they have considered of their Lordships Message; and they will return an Answer by Messengers of their own, in convenient Time.
Betts, for arresting the Duke D'Espernon.
This Day Francis Betts, a Marshals-man, that was at the arresting of the Duke Espernoone, was brought to the Bar; and the Relation of the Manner of the Affront and Arrest was read unto him; and he denied that he arrested the Duke, but the Bailiff.
Then Counsel on both Sides were heard, to the Matter of Fact; which was, according to the Narration, read.
Delinquents to ask his Pardon.
Then they withdrew, and this House took the same into Consideration, and the Uncivility and Affront offered to the Duke Espernoon. And the House thought fit to have the said Francis Betts and the Bailiff called in, and told that this House disapproves of the uncivil arresting of the Duke of Espernoone in that Manner; and to let them know, that this House is of Opinion, That, if they had gone Home to the Duke's House, and acquainted him therewith, they doubt not but the Duke would willingly have appeared: Therefore this House expects they should go to the Duke, and acknowledge their Fault in arresting him in that uncivil Way; and that they ask him Pardon for the same.
And the Bailiffs, being called in, promised to do it.
Then they withdrew.
Order for associating several Counties.
Next the Order for Association of the Counties of Derby, Leycester, (fn. 2) Nottingham, Huntingdon, Rutland, Bucks.
Ordered, To be committed to the Consideration of these Lords Committees following, and to report the same to this House: videlicet,
L. Viscount Say & Seale.
Ds. Howard de Esc.
Their Lordships, or any Five, to meet when they please, and where.
A Petition of John Reade, Merchant, Prisoner in The Fleete.
Ordered, To be referred to the Examination of the Judges of the Common Pleas that are in Town, who are to report the State of the Cause to this House.
E. of Warwick and Mr. Prideaux, about the Inland Post Office.
"The Letter Office was granted to Thomas Withering, for his Life, in Anno 1637.
"That he enjoyed the same Office until August, 1640; and then it was sequestered, by a Warrant under the King's Hand, and the Hands of Sir Henry Vane and Sir Francis Windebanck, Principal Secretaries of Estate, into the Hands of Burlemachy.
"This Patent was afterwards assigned, by the said Witherings, unto the Earl of Warwick, who petitioned the House of Commons against the said Sequestration, which was referred to a Committee.
"That, upon full Hearing, the Committee voted:
"That the Sequestration of the Inland Letter Office to Phillip Burlamachy is illegal, and void, and ought to be taken off.
"That Burlemachy and his Deputies should forthwith bring in an Accompt of Profits of the said Office received by him, or his Deputies, since the said illegal Sequestration.
"That the Proclamation in Pursuance of the said Sequestration is illegal.
"These Votes were reported, by the Committee, unto the House of Commons.
"These Votes were voted by the House of Commons, and transmitted to the Lords; and the Lords joined with the House of Commons in the said Votes.
"That, the 25th of November last, the Lords, in Pursuance of the said Votes, did Order, That the Possession of the said Letter Office should, upon Sight of that Order, be delivered to the said Earl of Warwick, or his Assigns, by the said Burlemachy, and all others claiming the Possession thereof; and that Burlemachy should, within Eight Days, bring an Accompt, upon Oath, of all the Profits of the said Office since the Sequestration.
"That Burlamachy and divers others were served with this Order, as appeareth by Affidavits now remaining in the Lords House; and yet Burlemachy did yield no Obedience to the same.
"That, upon Thursday the First of this Month, the Lords Ordered, That Burlemachy and others should appear the next Day, to shew Cause why they did not obey the Order of the Lords.
"That Burlemachy did appear, and deny that he intermeddled in the Execution of the said Office; but that Mr. Prideaux did execute the said Office in his House for the Posts.
"That thereupon it was then Ordered, That the Order of the 25th of November should be confirmed in all Points.
"And it was further Ordered, That the Posts, after the Sight of this Order, should bring all Mails of Letters to such Place as the Earl of Warwicke or his Deputies should appoint; and also to attend, to recarry such Mails of Letters as should be delivered unto them.
"That it should be lawful for the said Earl to seize all Mails of Letters.
"That, if any of the Posts should refuse to bring the Mails of Letters to such Place as should be appointed, or to receive and carry the Mails back, that the said Earl should have Power to displace such Postmasters, until he or they conform themselves unto the Order of this House.
"That, notwithstanding these Votes of both Houses and Orders, whereof Mr. Prideaux, Burlemachy, and the Posts, have taken Knowledge, yet James Hicks and Edward Roden, Servants as they pretend to Mr. Prideaux, have seized the Mail of Letters for Chester Road, upon Pretence of an Order made in the House of Commons upon Saturday last, and have refused to obey the Order of the Lords, and have carried the same Mail to Mr. Burlemachy's House."
Adjourned till 4a post meridiem.
The Earl of Manchester, Speaker.
Letter from the Earl of Stamford, for Arrears of Pay.
A Letter was read, written from the Earl of Stamford, at Hereford, to the Speaker of this House, concerning the Supply of Monies, being behind for Two Months Pay.
Letter from Lawdey to Ferrers, offering him a Reward to come over to the King; and his Answer.
Also a Letter (fn. 3) from Captain Lawdey; to Serjeant Major Ferrers, to offer him Five Hundred Pounds, if he would come to the King's Side.
Serjeant Major Ferrars Answer to the same.
Ordered, To be referred to the Committee for the Safety.
Message from the H. C. for Lord Robarts to be General in the West.
A Message was brought (fn. 4) from the House of Commons, by Sir Jo. Bampfeild, Knight:
That, in regard of the great Cruelties that are committed in Devonshire, by the coming in of Sir Ralph Hopton, they have voted and approved of the Lord Robartes to be General of the Western Parts; and they desire their Lordships Concurrence therein.
Ordered, That this be recommended to the Lord General; and the Speaker to write to the Lord General about it.
The Answer returned to the Messengers was:
That, by reason the Lord Robartes is a Commander in the Army under the Lord General, this House holds it fit to acquaint him therewith, and recommend it unto him; to that Purpose, have appointed the Speaker to write to the Lord General about it.
Earl of Stamford's Letter, about securing the Papists;
and desiring Arrears due.
"I am here in a very doubtful Case, since I am deprived of the Means of receiving any Monies, such is the Danger of Access unto this Time. I am confident the Parliament hath so well accepted of my poor Endeavours, since it hath pleased God to prosper me in all my Proceedings hitherto to be such a Gall and Impediment to their Design; for I am confident, had I not kept this unworthy City, a Torrent of Papists and Malignants had fallen down, which might have augmented the Adversaries to an infinite Number. Now, my Lord, we have as much Heart and Courage left us as ever we had; but we have neither Monies nor Credit for Bread, our Hay and Provender being very scant; yet, so long as I can find any Means of Subsistance, I shall remain here. The Country, as well as this vile City, are so base and malignant, that, although the roguish Army of the Welch Papists, and other Vagabonds, that were beaten at the First Battle in Warwickshire, do plunder, kill, murder, and destroy, Men and Women, take away all their Goods and Cattle; yet, such is their Hatred to our Condition, that they had rather be so used and intreated, than to be rescued and relieved by us. It would be a Discourse tending (fn. 5) in Truth, or amounting to a History, to relate their barbarous Usage of poor Christians, more barbarous and more inhuman than ever I read or heard of; as I have formerly related, that our Protestants are taken away from their Houses, and carried away to Ragland, for no other Cause but that they were Protestants. I take the Boldness, as many as I can light upon that are notorious Papists, to serve in the like Kind; and I could wish, if I might presume to desire, that all the Papists of Note might be secured; many of them, being of great Fortunes, may very well defray an Hundred Musketeers to be as a Guard for them, and, as Occasion serves, for the Defence of that County, where they shall be apprehended. I leave it to better Judgement, and crave Pardon if I commit a Fault in my Presumption. There was a little Note sent by one Colonel Lawday, who is under the Command of the Marquis of Hartford, to my Serjeant Major, to have tempted him with a Promise of Five Hundred Pounds in ready Money, and Assurance of great Preferments, in Case he would betray this Town into their Hands; but the Gentleman, scorning so base an Attempt, shewed me the Letter. This Letter was sent, by a little Boy, from a Fort which they have renewed within Five Miles of this Place. I hear their Forces are much increased; and Mr. Herbert, Son to my Lord of Cherbury, hath raised a Regiment; and that Sir Francis North hath brought with him about Two Hundred Dragooners out of Yorkshire. But, it seems, their Ambition is rather to prevail by Treachery than Manhood; but I trust in God, that neither can prevail against me, if I have any Possibility to subsist with Victuals, let my Want of Monies be never so great. And thus I shall cease to trouble your Lordships any further, humbly desiring that Care may be continued for Monies; for I shall be Two Months Pay behindhand before I shall receive a Penny, both for my Horse and Foot, and the Trail of Artillery; so that, my Lord, I shall leave all to the Consideration of their Lordships and the Parliament; and, as long as I can subsist here, I shall, by God's Grace, endeavour to do it: If not, an honourable Retreat will not be despised; how soon, I know not. I shall ever remain,
Hereford, this 3d of Dec. 1642.
"Your Lordship's most humble Servant,
"We have taken some Prisoners near Monmouth, which are Men of Worth in that Town. I intend to make some of them."
Lawdey's Letter to Ferrers, offering him a Reward to come over to the King's Party.
"My good Opinion of you makes me believe that your Necessity, rather than your Will, hath made you One in this Rebellion. My Affection to you finds a Way to bring you out of both; which may thus be done: We shall suddenly approach to Hereford with such Forces as will (God willing) soon reduce the Rebels in it to the King's Mercy. If you, in the mean Time, will contrive now to advantage us in this Design, his Excellency hath commanded me to offer you Five Hundred Pounds in Money, and to assure both yourself and your Assistants not only of your Pardons, but that you shall be preferred to better Charges in His Majesty's Army than you now have. Sir, bethink yourself betimes, and return your Answer by the Bearer, that (fn. 6) I may confidently stile myself, Sir,
"Your most hearty Friend to serve you,
"I received a Letter that bears your Name, inviting me to such an Act of Baseness as (these must tell you) I hold in highest Disdain; for never yet did my Necessity (or ever shall) put me one Tittle off my Fidelity, or inforce me to violate my Honour, which, notwithstanding the large Offer you make from his Excellency, I shall still endeavour (as hitherto I have done) entirely to preserve. As for His Majesty's Pardon, I conceive not myself to stand in Need of it, my Service and Employment being only for the Preservation of the true Protestant Religion, the Safety of His Majesty's Person, the Defence of the Laws of the Land, the Liberty of the Subject, and Privilege of Parliament; whereunto, I am persuaded, all truehearted Englishmen are conscientiously obliged. For your undoubted Power to reduce the Rebels in Hereford (as you term them), doubt not, Sir, when you come, you shall receive the Entertainment of a Soldier.
Hereford, Dec. the 1st, 1642.
The House was adjourned during Pleasure; and the Committee withdrew themselves, to consider of the Order for the Association of several Counties.
The House was resumed.
Order for several Counties to associate themselves.
And the Earl of Manchester reported the Sense of this Committee upon this Order, which is thought fit to be given to the House of Commons, as an Answer concerning that Order; which, being read, (fn. 7) was approved of, and Ordered to be communicated to the House of Commons, at a Conference:
"That the Lords do conceive that the Commissions granted to Generals or Commanders in Chief of the Forces of Counties associated together, with Power to lead and carry the Forces out of the said Counties to such Places as they shall think fit, without Direction or Consent of the Lords Lieutenants, doth take away the Power of Lords Lieutenants of those Counties, who, in such Cases, are made of no Use; neither are they capable to discharge the Trust reposed in them: They are therefore very willing to surrender up their Commissions, that this Ordinance may have no Interruption.
"And they desire that all such Commanders in Chief may be recommended to the Lord General, and be subordinate to his Commands."
House adjourned till 9 a cras.