Acts and Ordinances of the Interregnum, 1642-1660. Originally published by His Majesty's Stationery Office, London, 1911.
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For Explanation and Enlargement of an Ordinance lately made by the Lords and Commons in Parliament, for seizing and sequestring the Estates both Real and Personal of certain kindes of notorious Delinquents;
Be it now Declared and Ordained by the said Lords and Commons assembled, That in the number of such Delinquents and Papists, who shall come within the compass of the said former Ordinance, and to all intents and purposes to be proceeded against, as notorious Delinquents or Papists, expresly described in the said Ordinance, shall be reckoned and accounted, all such as voluntarily absenting themselves from the usual places of their abodes, or dwellings, Trade, Offices, or Imployments, and have gone, or shall go to any of the Kings Armies, or other Forces raised without consent of both Houses of Parliament, and have there continued, or shall there continue, and shall not within ten daies after Seizure or Sequestration of their several Goods or Estates, stay made of their Rents or by force of the said Ordinance (which said Sequestrators are hereby required to do) shew sufficient cause to be allowed by the Committee of the County, City, or Place, in which the said Seizure or Sequestration, or stay of Rents, is, or shall be made, of such their absence, going, and continuing in any of the said Armies or Forces: And all such as shall fraudulently imbezle, conceal, or convey away, all, or any part of their Goods, Money, or Estates, without valuable consideration, or not bona fide thereby preventing or avoiding the payment of any taxes or assessments laid upon them by any Ordinance of both Houses of Parliament, or any distress or seizure in case of non-payment thereof; or that after any such Tax or Assessment laid on them, convey themselves away, or refuse to be spoken with, whereby any Tax or Assessment laid upon them by Ordinance of both Houses of Parliament cannot be executed upon them or their Estates, according to the true meaning and purport thereof: Or that wittingly or willingly conceal or harbour any Goods or persons of Delinquents, within this or the said former Ordinance, or that have had any hand in the late horrid and desperate Conspiracy and Treason of Waller, Tompkins, Challinor, and their Confederates, whether they be already, or hereafter shall be Convicted to be privy or consenting thereunto (except such as being not yet convicted, shall discover and Confess all that they know thereof, within the time limited by both Houses of Parliament, to such Person or Persons as are or shall be appointed to take such discoveries and confessions) or that shall sue or molest any Person or Persons who shall have yielded obedience or conformity unto the Orders, Ordinances, or Commands of both Houses of Parliament, or have been, or shall be imployed by authority of both the said Houses, for, or by reason of any thing done, or to be done, in execution or performance thereof, or that have willingly harboured any Popish Priests or Jesuits in their houses or dwellings since the 29 of November 1642. or that shall hereafter so harbour any: And all and every Person or Persons which at any time heretofore have been convicted of Popish Recusancy, and so continue, or that have been or shall be thereof Indicted, and such their Indictments removed by Certiorary, or being not removed shall not by appearance and Traverse be legally discharged, before Seizure or Sequestration made of their Goods or Estates, or stay of their Rents, by force of this, or the said former Ordinance, or that have been at Mass, at any time within one whole year before the 26 day of March 1643. or shall hereafter be at Mass; or whose children or Grand children, or any of them living in house with them, or under their, or any of their Tuition and Government, shall be brought up in the Popish Religion: And all such Persons as being of the age of twenty one years, or above, shall refuse to take the Oath hereafter expressed, which Oath any two or more of the said Committees for Sequestration, in every County, City, or Place respectively, or any two Justices of the Peace, or the Mayor, Bayliffs, or other head Officer of any City or Town Corporate. shall have power to administer to any such Person or Persons; The Tenour of which Oath followeth, in hœc verba, viz.
I A. B. Do abjure and renounce the Popes Supremacy and Authority over the Catholick Church in General, and over my self in Particular; And I do believe that there is not any Transubstantiation in the Sacrament of the Lords Supper, or in the Elements of Bread and Wine after Consecration thereof, by any Person whatsoever; And I do also believe, that there is not any Purgatory, Or that the consecrated Hoast, Crucifixes, or Images, ought to be worshipped, or that any worship is due unto any of them; And I also believe that Salvation cannot be Merited by Works, and all Doctrines in affirmation of the said Points; I do abjure and renounce, without any Equivocation, Mental Reservation, or secret Evasion whatsoever, taking the words by me spoken, according to the common and usual meaning of them. So help me God.
Shall forfeit as Papists within this and the said former Ordinances; and Seizure and Sequestration of two third parts of all their Goods and Estates Real and Personal, and Sale of such proportion of their Goods so Seized and Sequestred, shall be made, and their Rents and Estates disposed of, in such manner and proportion, and by such Persons as by the said Ordinance of Sequestrations is appointed for Papists.
And for the better discovery of such Delinquents and Papists, in this, and the said former Ordinance described, and of their Estates; Be it further Ordained by the said Lords and Commons, That over and besides the former power given by the said Ordinance of Sequestration to the Persons trusted and imployed in the said Service, the said Committees for Sequestrations, or any two or more of them respectively, shall have power further hereby, to examine by Oath or otherwise, all and every Person or Persons (other then the parties themselves so declared to be Delinquents) that probably may be able to discover such Delinquents and Papists, or that may be trusted with, or privy to the keeping or concealing of the Goods or Estates of any such Delinquent or Papist, or that shall owe any thing to any such Delinquent or Papist; and such as shall refuse so to be examined, or to declare the whole truth therein, so far as he shall be so required, shall be committed to safe custody by the said Committee, or any two or more of them, imployed for their Examinations, till he or they shall conform him, her, or themselves.
And that such person or persons as shall first finde out and discover to one or both Houses of Parliament, or to any Committee authorized for this Service, or to any of their Agents or Officers, any such moneys, goods, debts, or estates (if the same be imbezelled, eloyned, concealed, or conveyed away, as aforesaid) shall do therein an acceptable service to the Commonwealth, and shall have and receive for his pains therein 12d. in every twenty shillings so discovered after Seizure or Sale thereof made, and receipt the money arising of thereupon, or out of the Rents or Estate so discovered, the same to be paid unto him by the respective Committees, or Treasurers trusted with the moneys that shall be received upon the Sale, or Proceed thereof, without any further or other Warrant, and shall further receive such other reward for his extraordinary service therein, as by the said Lords and Commons shall be further appointed and Ordered: And for the more speedy and effectual Seizure, and obtaining possession of all such Debts, Goods, and Estates, as aforesaid, discovered, or to be discovered;
It is further Ordained, That over and besides the Power given by the said former Ordinance for Sequestration, the several and respective Committees, appointed for this Service, or any two, or more of them, shall hereby have Power to authorize their several Collectours, and Agents, imployed herein, to break open all Locks, Bolts. Bars, Doores, or other strength whatsoever, where any such Estates, moneys, or goods are or shall be, upon prob able grounds, made appear to the said Committees or any two of them, and by them allowed in writing under their hands, to be provided that some or one of the said Committee, or the Sollicitor or Constable, or some other known Officer of that County or place; and one other person or persons of credit and trust be present at the doing thereof; And it is further ordained, that an exact Inventory, subscribed by all their hands, be taken of all particulars whatsoever, which shall be seized by vertue of these Ordinances: and one part of the said Inventory in writing so subscribed, delivered to the owner or owners of the said money, goods, or estates, or other things so inventoried, or to some person trusted with the keeping thereof. And that where any Rents, Debts, or Estate pertaining to any Delinquent or Papist within this or the said former Ordinance for Sequestration shall be found due, and the Debtor refuseth or neglecteth to pay the same, upon any pretence whatsoever, reasonable time being given to provide it, after it be come payable, and demand thereof made, the said Committees, their Collectors or other Agents whom they shall authorize thereunto under their hands in writing, shall hereby have power to distrain, seize, carry away, and sell so much of the goods and estate of every such person so refusing or neglecting as aforesaid, as may fully satisfie the said Rents or other Debts, together with all charges of seisure, removal, and sale of goods for satisfaction of ye said Rents, or Debts: And if any person or persons shall stand out or forbear to make payment of any sum or sums of mony which he or they ought to pay by vertue of this or any other Ordinance of both Houses of Parl. whatsoever, made for the raising of moneys, until a distress be taken for the same; that then he or they so standing out or forbearing, shall pay such double charges for all such seizures, removal, and sale of their goods, as the Committee or any two or more of them respectively shall allow or appoint; the same to be levied and taken out of the goods and estates of such persons so standing out or forbearing, by such as shall be employed to distrain for, and seize the principal sum. And if any person or persons shall undertake for the forth comming of any goods or estate at any time seized, by force of this or the said former Ordinance, all and every the said goods or estate shall be particularly Inventoried, and the Inventory thereof signed and subscribed by three or more persons of credit, and after given in to the Committee, under whom the persons making the seizure shall be employed; and if it shall after happen that any of the said goods or estate by imbezelled or wanting, or be denied or refused, or not delivered to the said respective Committee, or to their Collectors, requiring the same by order of the said Committee, or any two or more of them respectively, that then the said Committee, or such as they shall authorize thereunto, shall have power to seize, carry away and sell so much of such undertakers goods or personal estate, and profits of his Lands and Tenements, as may fully satisfie for the goods or estate so wanting, imbezilled, or not delivered; and also so much double charges for the seizure, carriage, and sale of the said undertakers goods or estate so to be seized and sold, as the said Committees, or any two or more of them, shall allow.
And for the better enabling of the said several Committees and their Agents, to make sale of all such goods and estates as are and shall be by them seized, and are appointed to be sold by this or the said former Ordinance;
It is further Declared and Ordained, that after the apportioning and setting out of some necessary maintainance (if it be desired) for the wives and children of such Delinquents whose goods and estates are and shall be seized (which allowance or maintenance the said several and respective Committees, or any two or more of them respectively, shall hereby have power to make, so, as they allow not the wife and children of one Delinquent above one fifth part of his goods and estate so seized) they shall authorize and require their Collectors and Agents to make sale of the residue or remainder of the said goods by the Candle for ready moneys to be paid at the delivery of the goods so sold, within ten dayes after the seizure thereof giving notice of the said sale in writing upon some posts or walls in the most open and eminent places near the place of sale two dayes before the said sale, due appraisment being first made thereof by two skilfull appraisors, being men of some quality and known integrity, from time to time to be chosen with the advice of the Sollicitor for Sequestrations, by the Committee trusted with the seizure and sale of the said goods: which appraisement shall be made in the presence of some of the said Committees, Sollicitor or Treasurer of the same County, City or place respectively and not otherwise. And for the more speedy dispatch hereof, it is further ordained, That the Committee of Lords and Commons for Sequestrations shall receive no information against the particular Committee of any County, City, or place for Sequestrations in any case of this kinde, till the matter hath first been certified under the hands of two or more of the said respective Committees by whose Agents and Ministers the goods or estate of the Delinquent were seized: Or in case the said Committees refuse to certifie the special matter, or that otherwise certificate cannot be had. And be it ordained that honest, able, and sufficient Collectors be appointed in every County, City, and place for this service, and their neglects or Defaults be certified to the Houses, or to the Committee of Lords and Commons for Sequestrations.
And that all and every person and persons, who shall be employed in this service, or shall do anything in pursuance of this or the said former Ordinance for Sequestrations, shall therein have the protection of both Houses of Parliament for their Indempnity, and be held and esteemed as persons doing an acceptable service to the Commonwealth.
And it is further Ordained, that every Collector within every County, City and place respectively, who shall receive any moneys in kinde, or make sale of any goods, shall deliver the moneys so received or raised by sales, to the Committee for Sequestrations within the said County, City, or place, where such moneys shall be received, or to such Treasurer as they shall appoint, or other person authorized to receive the same within seven dayes next after the said Collectors receit thereof, upon pain of forfeiture of twelve pence for every twenty shillings, received or levied by sale as aforesaid, and remaining in his or their hands, which Committee or Treasurer, shall take order for the safe sending of all, and every sum so received to the Treasurer at Guild Hall in London appointed for this purpose, Monthly, or more often as they shall be thereunto required by the said Treasurers at Guild-Hall, or by the said Committee of Lords and Commons for Sequestrations, or by the Committee of Lords and Commons for advance of moneys, And that the several Committees, Collectors, and Treasurers respectively, shall have power to give acquittances and discharges for the several sums by them received, which shall be sufficient discharges to the parties concerned in that behalf.
And it is further Ordained and Declared, That Master Hobson, Master Bernardiston, Master Hill, and Master Samuel Avery, Citizens of London, shall be and are hereby appointed, and authorized to be Treasurers at Guild-Hall London, to receive all moneys raised and to be raised upon, or by vertue of this, or the said former Ordinance for Sequestrations, and shall make entries thereof in fair Books to be provided for that purpose, as also of the names of the persons, from whom, and the time when they receive the same, and of their disbursements and payments out, for which their pains and service, they shall have three pence in every pound, which they shall so receive to be abated out of the said sums received.
And it is further ordained that no Treasurers trusted with any part of the said moneys, shall issue out any of the said moneys by way of payment, loan, or otherwise, (except as in this Ordinance is appointed) otherwise then and in such manner as is directed by former Ordinance for issuing out moneys; and for the more exact and perfect keeping of all accompts touching the premisses; it is yet further ordained, that every Collector shall from time to time, make and keep a sure and perfect Inventory of all and every the moneys, goods, and estates by him seized, another of the sale or other disposal thereof; both of which shall be subscribed under the hands of two or more persons of credit that were present at the said seizures or sales, besides his own; and that he make and ingross a duplicate thereof in parchment, fairly written, one part whereof he shall leave with the particular Committee, under which he is employed; and the other part after examination thereof, he shall deliver to the Sollicitor for that place, who shall transmit the same to the Committee of Lords and Commons for advance of money subscribed by the said Sollicitor, and Collector, and two of the said particular Committee of the place from whence it is transmitted, all which accounts and duplicates shall be made and sent up to London, in such manner and so often as the said Committee of Lords and Commons for advance of money, shall from time to time order and appoint: Provided always, and be it ordained, that it shall be lawfull for the respective Committees for Sequestrations, or any two or more of them to accept of ready money for the goods of the said Delinquents or Papists, or any of them which shall or are to be seized, according to the value thereof, in lieu and satisfaction of the said goods, and thereupon the seizure and sequestration, as to the same, to be discharged.
And be it ordained that if any person shall wittingly or willingly conceal and harbour any of the goods of any Delinquents within this or the said former Ordinance (he knowing such person to be a Delinquent) that then such persons shall forfeit treble the value thereof, to be levied upon his or their goods and estates, by the said respective Committee or Sequestrators, or any two or more of them, or their Agents, to the uses appointed by the said Ordinances for Delinquents Estates.