Journal of the House of Lords: Volume 8, 1645-1647. Originally published by His Majesty's Stationery Office, London, 1767-1830.
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DIE Veneris, 10 die Aprilis.
L. Viscount Say & Seale.
Answer from the H. C.
That they agree to the Alterations in the Ordinance for Martial Law for Trial of Mr. Murray; and to the Ordinance to enable such as shall buy the broken Brass Tomb at Windsor, for the paying that Garrison, to transport it beyond Seas: And to the other Things, that House will return an Answer by Messengers of their own.
Porter and Wetcombe, in Error.
Upon the Petition of Jo. Porter Esquire: It is Ordered, That the Errors depending in this House, concerning the Petitioner and James Wetcombe, shall be argued, at this Bar, on Tuesday next, at Nine of the Clock in the Morning; and that the said Whetcombe shall have speedy Notice of this Order, that he may prepare for the said Argument accordingly.
Answer to the Scots Paper concerning the Propositions.
Message to the H. C. that the Lords agree to it.
"That their Lordships have agreed to that Paper you sent unto them, as an Answer to the Scotts Commissioners; and have appointed their Members that are of the Committee of both Kingdoms, and desire that you will appoint your Members of that Committee, to acquaint the Scotts Commissioners with it."
Message from thence, with an Order to punish some of Major Babington's Troopers.
That the House of Commons have sent up an Order, for the finding out and punishing of certain Troopers under Major Babington, that have committed a most notorious Murther, and desire their Lordships Concurrence; and also a Letter, signifying the great Barbarism committed by the said Troopers.
Paper about establishing a French Congregation at Dover.
Ld Cromwell, Leave to take the Air without the Lines.
Ordered, That the Lord Cromwell is hereby permitted to go Seven Miles without the Line of Communication, to take the Air, for his Health's Sake: And it is farther Ordered, That the several Courts of Guard about the Works do permit the said Lord Cromwell, and his own Servants and Horses, to pass in and out, as he shall have Occasion, without Lett or Hindrance: And this to be, &c.
Answer to the Paper from the Scots Commissioners, concerning the Propositions to the King.
"That we having communicated to you some of the Propositions which we desired for the present should be sent to His Majesty for a safe and well-grounded Peace; and finding, upon Perusal of your Paper of the Sixteenth of March, your Lordships have not consented that those should be sent that are desired by us, for the Good and Security of the Kingdoms of England and Ireland, with your Reasons for the same:
"After serious Consideration thereof, we thought fit to adhere to our First Resolutions, and again to desire your Concurrence for the sending them unto the King; and although we clearly satisfied our own Judgements therein, yet, out of our earnest Desires to carry on all Business in a brotherly Way, we did appoint our Committees to communicate those our Resolutions, to shew the Grounds thereof, and to remove any Doubts that might stick therein with your Lordships: All which being considered, and that we have never denied our Consent that such Propositions should be presented to the King as your Lordships conceived to be for the Good and Security of the Kingdom of Scotland; the Matter in your Paper of the Sixth of April we did not expect, wherein you do desire that the Resolutions of both Houses (after so long and mature Deliberation) should be subjected to the Debates and Alterations of a Committee of both Houses, to be joined with you for that Purpose, and that upon Grounds which we can by no Means admit of; in regard that, by the Treaty, both Kingdoms are not bound to a joint Advice and Judgement in framing the Propositions, as is affirmed in your Paper; but that no Cessation, nor any Pacification or Agreement for Peace whatsoever, is to be made by either Kingdom, or the Armies of either Kingdom, without the mutual Advice and Consent of both Kingdoms, which is all in this Particular they are obliged to by the Treaty: And therefore, out of our earnest Desires to make Use of the present Opportunity for settling the Peace of the Kingdoms, and that we may clear ourselves before God and the World that we have neglected no Means which may procure the same, especially since, as your Lordships well remember, we have so often declared to the King that they are speedily to be sent, and the granting of them will be an effectual Means to give Satisfaction to both Kingdoms; we do again desire your Consent, that those Propositions, as we have sent them to your Lordships, may be sent to His Majesty; and we shall speedily communicate to your Lordships the Two other Propositions concerning Delinquents and the City of London, that they may be sent with the others."
Report from the Committee of the Admiralty, about erecting a Walloon or French Congregation in Dover.
"Whereas the House of Peers have, by their Order of the Second of this Instant March, referred to the Consideration of this Committee a Petition presented to their Lordships, in the Name of the Walloone or French and other Strangers, professing the true Protestant Religion, residing at Dover: This Committee, having debated the same, do conceive it meet, that, by an Ordinance of Parliament, the Petitioners be authorized to erect a Walloone or French Congregation in the Town and Port of Dover, with the same Discipline and Immunities as are granted to the several Foreign Congregations of this Kingdom, and with such Cautions as the Parliament shall in their Wisdom think fit; which Opinion of the Committee the Earl of Warwick is desired to report to their Lordships.
Letter concerning the great Barbarities committed by Major Babington's Troopers upon the Townsmen of Medborne in Leicestershire.
"Upon Friday the 3d April, 1646, about Eleven in the Forenoon, there came Nine or Ten Men into Medborne, and inquired for the Constable: He (fn. 1) being not at Home, they demand of his Wife Provender and Quarter for Ten Horses and Men. She answered, "They should have it;" and called for her Son to accommodate them: But One of them, impatient of the least Delay, says to the Woman, "Come, come, we must not stay; we'el take some of these Things (in the House), and sell them to pay our Quarters elsewhere;" and bending his Pistol at her, added, "We have been at Holt this Morning; and had we found any Cavaliers there without Tickets, we would have put them all to the Sword." The Woman, affrighted, delivers them what Provender they demanded, and offered them Tickets for several Houses; but they said, they would quarter together at the Alehouse, and the Constable should pay for it; and so they did.
"Anon One of them returns to the Constable's House, and demands a Horse out of the Stable, swearing they would have Horses ere they went out of the Town; and spake of firing the Town. With that, she sent privately to the Minister, Mr. T. Doughtey, to persuade them. The Soldier ran after the Man that was sent, who hardly escaped through a Barn, which the Soldier searched diligently for him. The Minister, when he came, found the Troopers horsed at the Stable's Door; and saluted them, asking if there were any Officer amongst them. With insolent Language and Behaviour, they began (fn. 1) to handle their Arms; saying, "We'el know who made you an Examiner." But being a little calmed with fair Words, they yet refused to give any other Account of themselves than "That they were for King and Parliament; and perhaps belonged to Rossiter, and had been to convey prest Men: What was that to anybody?" He desired to know, "if they quartered hereabouts last Night, and where the rest of their Party was?" They answered, "They scorned to be accountable to every one in these Things."
"A while after, News was brought to the Minister, That a Horse was taken out of his Team in the Field at Plow, by the Troopers that quartered in the Town; whereupon he, with his Youngest Brother and Two Men, took some Arms, and ran out to rescue the Team (being near the Town); and recovering the Horse which they were driving away, they took the Quarter-master Prisoner, with his Horse and Arms, without any Bloodshed on either Side; the rest, escaping, seized upon One whole Team in the Field, and Part of another, and were driving them apace towards Rockingham; whereupon the Town generally rose, and pursued them, and in Drayton Feild overtook them, where by Parley they came to Agreement, they to have their Prisoner, the Townsmen their Horses; they having now (and none of them till now) declared that they belonged to Major Babington, and that their Lieutenant and Troop quartered at Calent. Hitherto there had been some few Guns fired and Stones thrown, but no Blood drawn on either Side; and marching friendly together towards Midborne (for now divers called one another to Mind, as having been formerly acquainted), within a Quarter of a Mile of the Town a Party of Twenty Troopers more or thereabouts overtook them, and fell in amongst Medborne Men; and the Troopers, which upon Agreement came back from Drayton Feild, drew their Swords, and, joining with the said Twenty that came last up, fell to hewing and wounding of Medborne Men, who now expected nothing less; and without any more ado wounded about Twenty of them in the Field, divers were thrust through the Body, as they made away to the Hedges and Ricks; some had their Guts let out of their Bellies, some both their Hands almost cut off, and made inserviceable as long as they shall live; some beaten and bruised almost to Death, and many wounded and cut on the Head and Arms less dangerously; of these One died the same Night, and divers others (the Surgeons say) mortally hurt; and leaving divers for dead in the Field, and others Prisoners, they followed the rest of Medborne Men into the Town, cutting and wounding all they overtook, swearing that they would kill them every Man; and when some cried out they had their Death's Wounds already, they made them unbutton their Cloaths, and shew their Wounds, before they would spare them, cursing after a horrid Manner, and pulling One off the Horse that he was set upon to be carried into the Town (being deadly wounded) bidding him "go on Foot, or the Plague rot him in the Ditch."
"Being in the Town, they came to the Parsonagehouse, swearing and railing after a savage Manner, with such Confusion as one could not be heard for another; demanded Entrance, and their Prisoner. The Minister, who staid with the Prisoner in the House whilst his Brother and Servants went out with the Townsmen, and not knowing what was done abroad, desired them "to declare who they were for, and to whom they belonged, that our Complaints might be heard; and they should have their Prisoner." They said, "They would have their Man and him too, or they would fire the House and Town, and put all they found to the Sword;" and withall One of them rode to the other Side of the Town, and fetched a Burning Firebrand, which he attempted to put into a Hovel of Straw near the House; but it fell down into the Dirt, and quenched. In the mean Time, the rest brake open the Gates, and beset the House. All this while the Minister, destitute of sufficient Help for the Guard of the Prisoner, brought him to a Window, that he might persuade them to be quiet, desiring that they might understand one another; and, if Friends, why fight; if otherwise, they might know what to do. But the Prisoner encouraged them rather to release him by Force; and then they cried out, "No Parley nor Quarter; but they would have Submission to meer Mercy, and have his Blood." With that, he presented a great scattering Gun at Four or Five of them close together, within Distance, with which some of them shrunk; desperately swearing, "That if he made One Shot, they would go fire the Town, and put the Minister's Brother and the rest of the Prisoners to the Sword, whilst the rest stormed the House." In the mean Time, divers Windows being broken, and the House entered, the Minister slipt out at a Postern into the Garden, and escaped.
"When they had entered the House, they brake open every Door they found (fn. 2) locked (save One which they could not), dreadfully swearing they would cut the Maids in Pieces if they told not where their Master was; and having plundered the House at their Pleasure, at length they departed with the Minister's Brother Prisoner, together with Arms and Plunder, to their Quarters; swearing often by the Way, "That they were sorry they had given him Quarter; and that, if they had met his Brother, they would have cut him in Pieces;" and some of them threatened afterwards, in their Quarters, to kill Mr. Doughty when or wheresoever they met him alone.
"The same Evening, Notice was given to the Governor of Rockingham of what had passed, with Desire to apprehend them; who prevailed to have the Minister's Brother set at Liberty, and some few Arms brought into Rockingham the next Day; to whose tender Care of sparing innocent Blood, and to avoid the Danger of apprehending Soldiers (so severe in their Executions) in their Quarters, the said Party owe their Safety and Repose within a Mile of Rockingham for about Twenty-fours after; but several Towns beginning to stand upon their Guard, they are now marched away to seek the like Service elsewhere.
Order for apprehending these Troopers.
"Forasmuch as the Lords and Commons in Parliament assembled are informed of horrible Murthers and Outrages committed by sundry disorderly Troopers, under the Command of Major Babington, at or near Medbourne, in the County of Leicester, upon the Inhabitants of the said Town, the which Offenders are not yet discovered: It is Ordained, by the Lords and Commons aforesaid, for the better Discovery of the said Offenders, and bringing them to Punishment, That the respective Sheriffs, Mayors, Constables, and all Colonels, Captains, and other Officers Military whatsoever, within the respective Counties of Leicester, Rutland, Lincolne, and Northampton, and elsewhere, do seize on and apprehend, and cause to be apprehended, all Troopers whatsoever under the Command of the said Major Babington, and them cause to be imprisoned and put in safe Custody, and with all Speed to give Notice to One or both Houses of whom they shall apprehend; the Lords and Commons declaring, that if any Officer whatsoever Civil or Military shall not do their utmost Endeavours herein, they shall be severely punished for their Contempt, and a strict Account had of their Neglect in this Behalf: And it is further Ordered, That Major Babington do his utmost Endeavour for the bringing of his Troop together, and for the Discovery of the said Offenders; and that he do forthwith give in a List of the Names of his Troopers to the Committee of Examinations; and if any Person shall do any Act wilfully to prevent the Execution of this Ordinance, he shall be proceeded against as guilty of an Endeavour to conceal such high Offenders."
Order for trying Mr. Murray by Martial Law.
"Whereas William Murray Esquire is apprehended upon Suspicion of being a Spy, and since committed to The Tower of London: It is Ordained, by the Lords and Commons in this present Parliament assembled, That Sir Thomas Fairefax Knight, General of the Forces raised by the Houses of Parliament, Serjeant Major General Skippon, Colonel Rowland Wilson, Colonel Owen Rowe, Colonel Edward Hooker, Colonel Ralph Harrison, Colonel Zachary, Colonel Hardwick, Colonel Thomas Gower, Colonel George Langham, Colonel George Paine, Colonel Thomas Randall, Colonel William Willoughby, Colonel John Bradley, Lieutenant Colonel Francis Rowe, Lieutenant Colonel Lawrence Bromfeild, Major Rich'd Wollaston, Sir Nathaniell Brent Knight, Doctor Walker, Mr. John Miles, Sir James Harrington Knight, Colonel Francis West Lieutenant of The Tower, Colonel Charles Fleetwood, Colonel Humphreyes, Colonel Richard Turner, Colonel Randolph Manwaring, Colonel Edmond Harvey, Colonel Robert Manwaring, Colonel Mathew Shepp'de, and Lieutenant Colonel Thomas Buxton, Colonel Whichcott, Colonel Pinder, Lieutenant Colonel Welden, Colonel William Underwood, Colonel Thomas Player, Colonel Prince, Colonel Samuell Harsnett, Lieutenant Colonel Nathaniell Camfeild, William Mollins, Colonel John Owen, Colonel Webb, Colonel John Bradley, John Bradshawe and William Steele Esquires, or any Twelve or more of them, be and are hereby constituted and made Commissioners, and shall have full Power and Authority, to hear and determine whether the said William Murray be a Spy, according to any Law, Article, or Ordinance of War, at any Time allowed by both Houses of this present Parliament; and if in case they shall find him guilty of the same upon his own Consession without Constraint, or upon Proof of Two sufficient Witnesses, then to proceed to the Condemnation and Execution of him according to the Course and Custom of War, and according to the Laws and Articles aforesaid: Provided, That no Execution of Sentence as to Death shall be had upon this Ordinance until Six Days after Notice given of the said Sentence unto both Houses of Parliament: And it is hereby further Ordained, by the Authority aforesaid, That the said Commissioners, or any Twelve or more of them, shall be authorized from Time to Time, for the Purpose aforesaid, to sit within some convenient Place within the Line of Communication as they shall think fit, and to appoint an Advocate and Provost Marshal, and all other Officers needful for the Trial and Execution aforesaid; and the said Advocate is hereby authorized and enabled to receive all Accusations, Articles, Complaints, and Charges, against the said William Murray, concerning the Premises, and to examine him; and to administer Corporal Oaths to all Witnesses not being Peers of this Realm, or Members of the House of Commons, or Assistants of the House of Peers, or Attendants or Officers of either of the Houses of Parliament, and them to examine upon Oath at the Trial, as the Case may require; and the said Commissioners, or any Two or more of them, are hereby enabled to send their Warrant for any Witnesses, not being Peers of this Realm, or Members of the House of Commons, or Assistants of the House of Peers, or Attendants, or Officers of either of the Houses of Parliament, in any Place whatsoever: And it is hereby further Ordained, That all Mayors, Bailiffs, Sheriffs, Justices of Peace, and other Officers whatsoever, shall be aiding and assisting to the said Commissioners, and every of them; and all and every other Person and Persons that shall be aiding and assisting to them in the Execution of the Premises shall be protected, and for ever saved harmless, by the Power and Authority of both Houses of Parliament: Provided, That none of the Commissioners named in this Ordinance shall fit and act by virtue hereof, except they have taken the National Covenant, or shall take the same before their respective Sitting, or executing any Thing by virtue thereof."
Persons who buy the Brass Statues at Windsor may export them.
"Ordered, by the Lords and Commons assembled in Parliament, That such Person or Persons as shall buy the Brass Statues at Windsor Castle, and the Images there defaced, and the other broken Pieces of Brass, shall have Liberty to transport them beyond the Seas, for making their best Advantage of them."