The Journals of All the Parliaments During the Reign of Queen Elizabeth. Originally published by Irish University Press, Shannon, Ire, 1682.
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The Journal of the House of Commons.
A Journal of the Passages of the House of Commons in the Session of Parliament holden at Westminster, An Dom. 1562. which began (after one Prorogation of the same) on Tuesday the 12th of January, and then and there continued until the Prorogation thereof upon Saturday the 10th day of April, An D. 1563.
The Journal of this present Session of Parliament, is not only furnished with many good Ordinary passages, touching the reading, ingrossing, and passing of Bills; but also with some unusual and remarkable matter, concerning the Priviledges of the House it self, and with the return of divers Burgesses from certain Burrough-Towns, who had for some time before discontinued that their Priviledge. And although that .......Seymour Esq; continued still Clerk of the House of Commons, by which means the agitations of the said House were, for the most part, very imperfectly recorded by him in the Original Journal-Book of the same, so that the referring of a Bill to Committees is scarce discoverable, in respect that the name only of one of them is for the most part mentioned; yet the manner of the Burgesses taking the Oath of Supremacy (which was never in use before this Session of Parliament, it having been enjoined by Statute in the first year of her Majesties Reign) together with the manner of the Election and Presentment of the Speaker, is very Methodically and Orderly entered. And lastly, whereas there is mention made in the Original Journal-Book of the House of Commons aforesaid, that the Speaker with the whole House did exhibit their Petition to the Queens Majesty, on Thursday 23. day of January, in the Afternoon, touching her Marriage, and the Limitation of the Succession of the Crown, which said Petition is there omitted, I have therefore caused it to be inserted at large, out of a Copy thereof I had by me, which I gather by all concurring circumstances, to be the very same, which is only generally remembred in the said Original JournalBook, as aforesaid.
The second Parliament of the most Noble Princess Elizabeth, by the Grace of God Queen of England, &c. begun at Westminster on Monday the 11. day of January, in the fifth Year of her Gracious Reign; By her Highness Commission directed to the Lord Keeper of the Great Seal, the Lord Steward, the Lord Treasurer, the Duke of Norfolk, &c. to Prorogue the same Parliament until the 12. day of the same Month, viz. the Morrow following; And the Knights and Burgesses, being sent for to come unto the Lords in the Upper House, without any appearance of their names taken then by the Lord Steward, and Lord Treasurer, the Lord Keeper shewed in few words, that the Queens Majesty was somewhat sick of a Stitch; wherefore she had sent her Writ for the Prorogation, until the Morrow, which was done accordingly.
And on the Morrow, being the 12. day of January, about ten of the Clock, the Queens Majesty, with the Lords and Bishops in Parliament Robes, did ride from the Palace to Westminster-Church, and there heard a Sermon; during which the Earl of Arundel, being Lord Steward, repaired unto Whitehall, and there Recorded the Appearance of the Knights and Burgesses; at which time also (as may very well be collected by comparing this instant days passages, with those of Thursday the third day of October, in the Journal of the House of Commons, de an. 8 & 9 Regin. Eliz. following) the said Lord Steward did doubtless, either in his own person, or by his Deputies administer the Oath of Supremacy (according to the Statute, de an. 1 Eliz. Cap). 1. to such Knights, Citizens and Burgesses, as were at this time present, and appeared.
And after, the Queen coming from the Church, and being set in her Royal Seat in the Upper House, and the Commons standing at the lower end of the Chamber; The Lord Keeper of the Great Seal, with great Eloquence, declared this Parliament to be called for Religion, Discipline, and Aid to the State in defence of Enemies with Excellent Dilation of those Causes; And in the end willed the Commonse to repair to their House, and there to chuse a discreert, grave, and wife man, to be their Speaker, and to present him to the Queens Majesty, on Friday next in the Afternoon; immediately the Commons reforted to their Common House, where after they were set, Mr Comptroller standing up, rehearsed the Lord Keepers Oration, for the Election of a Speaker, and said, that in his Opinion, Mr Thomas Wiliams Esq;, one of the Fellows of the Inner-Temple, being grave, learned and wife, was very meet to that Office; whereupon the whole House with one intire Voice, cried Mr Williams, Mr Williams; And then Mr Williams standing up, and reverently disabling himself, required the House to proceed to a new Election; unto whom Mr Secretary Cecill Answering that the House had gravely considered of him; and therefore required him to take the place; and he approaching was led and set in the Chair by Mr Comptroller; and it was agreed by the House to meet all there again on Friday next, at one of the Clock in the Afternoon, to present Mr Speaker to the Queens Majesty.
On Friday the 15th of January, in the Afternoon, Mr Speaker, with the rest of the House of Commons, went before the Queen in her Royal Seat, where Mr Speaker most humbly disabled himself, requiring that a new Election might be made, to the which the Queens Majesty, confirming the same Election, by the Mouth of the Lord Keeper, Mr Speaker made an Excellent Oration, and in the end made the accustomed Petitions; which being granted, the Lord Keeper willed him with the rest, to resort to the House of Commons, there to deliberate upon matters necessary; which being done,
On Saturday the 16. day of January, Two Bills of no great moment, had each of them one reading; of which one was touching Servants to serve their Masters; And the other to put down an Iron-Mill near Guilford, and were each of them read the first time.
On Monday the 18th day of January, Five Bills of no great moment, had each of them one and the first reading; of which the second was the Bill for the assurance of the Mannors of Whiteacre, and Whiteacre Burgh, to Richard Bertie and Katherine Duchess of Suffolk his Wife, from Walter Herenden, being a Feossee in Trust.
Mr Speaker with the Counsel, and twenty four more of the House, were appointed to meet this Afternoon, to draw Articles of Petition for the Queens Marriage, and Succession. Vide Concerning this Business, on Thursday the 28. day of this Instant January following; Mr Comptroller is nominated one of them.
For that it seemed to the House, being very full, that they were a greater number than were returned; therefore the names were immediately called, and as they were called, they departed out of the House, and in the end ten or eleven remained, who said they were returned, and would bring Warrants thereof.
On Wednesday the 20. day of January, Two Bills of no great moment, had each of them one reading; of which the second, being the Bill for allowance to Sheriffs, upon their Accompts for Justices Diets, was read the second time; and as it should seem Committed to Mr Sackvill, and others; see a like President on the day following.
An Excellent Declaration was this day made by Mr Secretary Cecill, of the great Charges defrayed by the Queens Majesty, and of the Causes of the Wars in France, for not keeping the Edict there made by the Parliament, and also touching the Charges at Barwicke, and New-haven, the Provision of Armour, and the Navy, the Cavillation of the French for Callice, concluding to consider for the Aid.
On Thursday the 21. day of January. For that it is said, that Mr Elrington hath interest in the Iron-Mill in the Town of Shere in Surrey, whereas the Bill is to put down the same: It was resolved, that Mr Speaker should direct his Letter to him, in the name of the House, to come and shew, if he will, for saving his Estate therein; Vide touching this business, on Saturday the 30. day of this Instant January ensuing.
By which manner of Entring the Title of the said Bill, it may plainly be collected, that the Bill it self, had at this time its second reading, and was thereupon committed to Mr Sidney aforesaid (to whom it seemeth the Bill was delivered) and others, whose names are omitted.
On Friday the 22th day of January, Mr Elrington, Owner of the Iron-Mill in Shere; for the suppressing of which, a Bill was put into this House; desired a Copy of the Bill, and a day to Answer with his learned Counsel. two in number; and to bring his Answer on Friday next.
Three Bills of no great moment, had each of them one reading; of which the second being the Bill against carrying of Horses out of the Realm, was secundâ vice lect.; but no mention is made, that it was either Ordered to be ingrossed, or referred to Committees, because it had been formerly sent down from the Lords. And the last, being the Bill for the Government of the Garrison and Souldiers of Barwick, was read the second time, and (as it should seem) was committed to Mr Fitz-Chamberlain (mistaken for Mr Vice-Chamberlain and others;) Vide a like President on Thursday the 21th day of this instant January foregoing.
For that Burgesses be returned of divers Boroughs, not lately returned in the Chancery; viz. the Burgess of Tregony, St Jermynes, and Maws in Cornwall, the Borough of Minked in Somersetshire, the Borough of Tamworth in Stafford, and the Borough of Stankbridge in Southampton, Mr Speaker declared to the House, that the Lord Steward agreed they should resort into the House, and with convenient speed to shew Letters Patents, why they be returned into this Parliament.
Nota, That it was very common and ordinary in former times to avoid the Charges of their Burgesses allowance, in time of Parliament (when the Town grew into any poverty or decay) that the Boroughs did either get Licence of the Sovereign for the time being, to be discharged from such Election and Attendance, or did by degrees discontinue it themselves; but of later times, the Knights, Citizens and Burgesses of the House of Commons, for the most part bearing their own Charges, many of those Borough-Towns, who had discontinued their former priviledge, by not sending, did again recontinue it (as these Towns here) both during her Majesties Reign, and afterwards in the Reign of King James her Successor.
On Saturday the 23th day of January, Three Bills had each of them one reading; of which the third being the Bill for levying of Fines in the County Palatine of Durham, was read the second time, and Ordered to be engrossed.
Three other Bills had each of them one reading, of which the last being the Bill to avoid Aliens, not being Denizens, nor being here for Religion nor Conscience sake, was upon the second reading rejected, and the Bill torn.
On Monday the 25th day of January, Two Bills of no great moment, had each of them one reading; of which the first being the Bill for OakTimber, preservation of Bark, was read the second time, and thereupon rejected and torn.
On Tuesday the 26th day of January, Two Bills had each of them one reading; of which the second being the Bill that Apothecaries, and their Stuff, shall be under the search of the Colledge of Physicians, was read the first time.
A Petition devised by the Committees (who were appointed on Tuesday the 19th day of this instant January foregoing, although their names be wholly omitted, through the Clerks negligence) to be made to the Queens Majesty by Mr Speaker, for limitation of Succession, was read by Mr. Norton one of the committees. And thereupon the Queens Privy-Council were required to move her Majesty, that Mr Speaker with the whole House, may exhibit to her Highness that Petition, and to certifie her Highness pleasure. Vide touching this business on Thursday the 28th day of this instant January ensuing in Pomeridiano.
The Bill touching carrying of Horses out of the Realm, was sent up to the Lords, by Mr Comptroller, with a request to the Lords, to further the Petition of this House to the Queens Majesty, touching Marriage and Succession; which was well allowed of by the Lords. Vide on Thursday the 28th day of this instant January following.
On Wednesday the 27th day of January, the Bill touching Curriers to buy Tann'd-Leather, to work and sell it, was read the second time, and (as it should seem) was committed to Mr. Crofts, and others not named. Vide a like President on Thursday the 21th day of this instant January foregoing.
Mr. Comptroller with the rest of the Council, declared, that the Queens Majesty would receive the Petition to Morrow in the Afternoon, at the Palace, by Mr. Speaker, with the whole House; of which see more on the day immediately ensuing.
In the Afternoon Mr. Speaker, with the whole House (with a Notable Oration) did exhibit their Petition to the Queens Majesty, in the Gallery at the Palace, touching Marriage and Succession; which her Highness thankfully accepted (with an Excellent Oration) deferring the Answer to further time, for the gravity of the Cases. What further Answer her Majesty gave, may be seen on Thursday the 16th day of February ensuing, and on Saturday the 10th day of April postea.
But as touching the Petition delivered to her Majesty this Afternoon, by the whole House, from the Mouth of Mr. Speaker, it is not at all contained in the Original Journal-Book of the House of Commons; and therefore having a Copy of it by me (which I do gather by all concurring circumstances, to be the very same here mentioned, both in respect of the time and matter) I have caused it to be inserted at large. I am not ignorant, that in divers Copies of this Speech, another Petition also is joined with it, as preferr'd likewise by the Lords to her Majesty, at this time, for the same Causes, which in truth happened not until the second Session of this Parliament following, Anno 8, & 9 Regin. Elizabethæ; neither shall it be needful to make any further demonstration thereof in this place, having so fully cleared it in the Upper House Journal, at that aforesaid second Session ensuing, upon Tuesday the 5th day of November; and now followeth the Copy of the above-mentioned Petition, at this time preferr'd as aforesaid.
Your Commons in this your Majesties present Parliament Assembled, most High and Mighty Princess, our most Dread Sovereign Lady, as they do daily, to their Commodity and Comfort, feel and receive the inestimable benefits of your most Graciours Government of this your Realm, in Peace and Surety, so do also most thankfully acknowledge the same, beseeching Almighty God long to bless and continue your most prosperous Reign over them; And among all these benefits which they daily receive of your Highness, they have at this time willed me, in their names to recognize unto your Highness, that they account it not the least, but rather among the greatest of them all, That your Majesty both at this time Assembled your Parliament, for supplying and redressing the greatest wants and defaults in your Common-Weal, and for the establishing the surety of the same; which your Majesties most gracious meaning, both been at your Commandment, signified unto us, by the Right Honourable the Lord Keeper of your Great Seal of England, namely in this, that he willed us first to have consideration of the greatest matters that nearest touch'd the State of the Realm, and the preservation thereof, seeming therein also to express unto us the Conformity of your Majesties mind, in having principal respect to the matters of greatest weight; and for that respect Assembling this your Parliament. And for as much as your said Subjects see nothing in this whole Estate of so great importance to your Majesty, and the whole Realm, nor so necessary at this time to be reduced to certainity, as the sure continuance of the Government of the Imperaial Crown thereof, and the most honourable Issue of your Body (which Almighty God send us to your Highness Comfort) and for want thereof, in some certain limitation to guide the Obedience of our Posterity; And where Almighty God to our great Terror and dreadful Warning, lately touched your Highness with some danger of your most Noble Person by Sickness, from which so soon as your Grace was by Gods favour and mercy to us recovered, your Highness sent out your Writs of Parliament, by force whereof your Subjects are at this time Assembled; your said Subjects are both by the necessity and importance of the matter, and by the convenience of the time of Calling them immediately upon your recovery, enforced to gather, and consess, that your Majesty of your most Gracious and Motherly Care for them, and their Posterity, have Summoned this Parliament, principally for establishing of some certain limitation of the Imperial Crown of your Realm, for preservation of your Subjects, from certain and utter destruction; (if the same should not be provided in your Life, which, God long continue;) They cannot, I say, but acknowledge your Majesty both most graciously considered the great dangers, the unspeakable miseries of civil Wars, the perillous and intermingling of Foreign Princes and feditious, ambitious, and factious Subjects at home, the waste of noble Houses, the slaughter of People, subversions of Towns, intermission of all things pertaining to the maintenance of the Realm, unsurety of all mens Possessions, Lives and Estates, daily interchange of Attainders and Treasons; All these mischiess, and infinite others, most likely and evident, if your Majesty should be taken from us, without known Heir, (which God forbid) to fall upon your Subjects, to the utter subversion of the whole, whereof you have Charge under God: If good provision should not be had in this behalf. Your Majesty hath weighed the Examples of Foreign Nations, as what ensued the Death of Great Alexander, when for want of certain Heirs by him begotten, or appointed, the variety of Titles, the diversity of Dispositions in them that had Titles, the ambition of them that under colour of doubtfulness of Titles, forsook all obedience of Titles, destroyed his Dominions, and wasted Posterity with mutual Wars and Slaughters: In what miserable Case also was this Realm it self, when the Title of the Crown was tossed in question, between the two Royal Houses of Lancaster and York, till your most Noble Progenitors Henry the Seventh, and the Lady Elizabeth his Wife, restored it to a setled Unity, and left the Crown in a certain course of Succession? These things, as your Majesty hath upon your own danger most graciously considered for our Comfort and Safety; so we most humble Subjects, knowing the preservation of our selves, and all our Posterity, to depend upon the safety of your Majesties most Royal Person, have most carefully and diligently considered, how the want of Heirs of your Body, and certain limitation of Succession after you, is most perillous to your Highness, whom God long preserve amongst us. We have been admonished of the great malice of your Foreign Enemies, which even in your Life-time have sought to transfer the Dignity and Right of your Crown, to a Stranger; we have noted their daily most dangerous practices against your Life and Reign; We have heard of some Subjects of this Land, most unnaturally consederated with your Enemies, to attempt the destruction of your Majesty, and us all that live by you; We fear a Faction of Hereticks in your Realm, Contentious and malicious Papists, left they most unnaturally against their Country, most madly against their own Safety, and most treacherously against your Highness, not only hope for the woful day of your Death, but also lay in wait to advance some Title, under which they may revive their late unspeakable Cruelty, to the destruction of Goods, Possessions, and Bodies, and thraldom of the Souls and Consciences of your faithful and Christain Subjects; We see nothing to withstand their desire, but your only Life, their Unkindness and Cruelty we have tasted; we fear much to what attempt the hope of such opportunity (nothing withstanding them but your Life) will move them; We find how necessary it is for your preservation, that there be more set and known between your Majesties Life and their desires; We see on the other side, how there can be no such danger to your Majesty, by ambition of any Apparent Heir established by your benefit and advancement, for want of Issue of your Majesties Royal Body, as you are now subject unto, by reason of their desire and hope; We know not how many pretend Titles and Trust to succeed you, whole secret desire we so much more fear, because neither their number, force nor likelihood of disposition, is known unto us; and so we can the less beware of them for your preservation.
We find also by good proof, that the certain limitation of the Crown of France, hath in that Realm procured so great quiet, as neither the person of the Prince in Possession hath been indangered by secret or open practice, nor the Common-Weal molested by civil dissention, through any quarrel attempted, for the Title of that Crown; And somewhat near home, we have remembered the miserable estate of Scotland, after the Death of King Alexander, without any certain Heir, or limitation to whom the Crown of Scotland should remain; by reason whereof the whole estate of that Realm was left open, to the ambition of many Competitors, and most grievous desolation and spoil, that grew upon such division; which afterwards gave occasion to King James the Fifth, to limit the Crown of Scotland to certain Noble Families of that Realm; whereby they at this present enjoy that quiet surety, which we want; And all your Majesties most Noble Progenitors, Kings of this Realm, have been in this behalf so careful, that from the Conquest till this present day, the Realm was never left, as it is now, without a certain Heir, living and known, to whom the Crown after the Death of the Prince, should appertain; So, as your Majesty of your singular Care for us, and our Posterity, hath at this time Assembled us, for establishing of this great and only stay of our Safeties. We again, Most Gracious Sovereign Lady, acknowledge our selves, and all that we have, to depend upon your Preservation, being according to our bounden Duty, most careful of the same, are in most humble manner come to your Majesties presence; And I, the Mouth appointed for them, together with and in the name of all your most loving, natural and obedient Subjects, do present unto you, our most lowly Suit and Petition, That for a much as of your Majesties Person would come the most redoubted and best Heirs of your Crown, such as in time to come we would most Comfortably see, and our Posterity most Joyfully Obey;
It may please your Most Excellent Majesty, for our sakes, for our preservation and comforts, and at our most humble Suit, to take to your self some Honourable Husband, whom it shall please you to join unto in Marriage; whom; whatsoever he be that your Majesty shall choose, we protest and promise, with all humility and reverence, to Honour, Love and Serve, as to our most bounden duty shall appertain; And where by the Statute which your most noble Father Assented unto, of this most Princely and Fatherly Zeal for his most loving Subjects, for the limitation of the Succession of the Emperial Crown of this Realm, Your Majesty is the last expresly named within the body of the same Act; and for that your Subjects cannot judge, nor do know any thing of the form or validity of any further limitations, set in certain for want of Heirs of your Body, whereby some great dangerous doubt remaineth in thier Hearts, to their great grief, peril and unquietness; It may also please your Majesty, by Proclamation of certainty already provided, if any such be, or else by limitations of certainty, if none be, to provide a most gracious remedy in this great necessity, which by your most Honourable, and Motherly Carefulness for them, hath occasioned this Assembly; That in this convenient time of Parliament, upon your late danger most graciously called by you, for that cause, your Grace may now extend to us that great benefit, which otherwise, or at other times perhaps shall never be able to be done again; so not only we, but all ours hereafter, and for ever, shall owe no less to your Majesties propagation of Succession, than we do already owe to your most Famous Grandfather, King Henry the Seventh, his uniting of Division; And your Subjects on their behalfs, for your Majesties further Assurance, whereupon their own preservation wholly dependeth, shall imploy their whole endeavours, and Wits, and Power, to renew, devise and establish the most strong and beneficial Acts and Laws of Preservation, and Surety of your Majesty, and of your Issue in the Emperial Crown of this Realm, and the most penal, sharp and terrible Statutes, to all that shall but once practise, and attempt or conceive against your Safety, that by any possible means they may invent or establish, with such limitations of conditions, and restraints to all in Remainders, such grievous pains, and narrow Animadversions to all that shall enterprize of imagine anything in prejudice of your Highness, and your Issue, as your Majesty shall not have any cause of suspicion, but most assured ground of Confidence in all your faithful Subjects, continually Watching and Warding for your Preservation, which God long continue, that you may see your Childrens Children, to his Honour and our Comfort, and encline your Gracious Ear to our most humble Petitions.
This Petition of the House of Commons, delivered by Thomas Williams Esq; their Speaker, to her Majesty this Afternoon, as aforesaid (to which see her Majesties further Answer sent to the said House, on Tuesday the 16th day of February ensuing) now follows the residue of the passages of this Journal, out of the Original Journal-Book of the same House.
On Friday the 29th day of January, Seven Bills of no great moment, had each of them one reading; of which the sixth being the Bill for Fines to be levyed in the County Palatine of Durham; was read the third time, and passed the House.
Mr Elrington appeared this day, with Mr. Serjeant Harper, and Mr. Plowden being of his Learned Council, who shewing great reasons, that the Bill might be rejected, certain Articles were delivered in by the Mayor of Guildford, for maintenance of the Bill, which being read, the Copy thereof was awarded to Mr. Elrington; Vide de ista materia, on the Morrow following.
On Saturday the 30th day of January, Thomas Heneage was returned Knight for the County of Lincoln, and also Burgess for Boston in that County, and doth appear for Lincoln; whereupon a new Writ is required for Boston.
Three Bills had each of them one reading, of which the last being the Bill to revive the Act touching Usury, an. 37 Hen. 8. was read the first time, and as it should seem, committed to Mr. Vice-Chamberlain, to consider of it.
Mr. Elrington came in with the Serjeant, requiring the Order of this House, in what fort he should Answer the Articles; whereupon the whole matter was committed to twelve of the House, to hear the Parties and Proofs on both sides, and thereupon to certifie this House; of which number it should seem, Mr. Sidney was one. Vide touching this business on Thursday the 21th day, on Friday the 22th day, and on Friday the 29th day of this instant January foregoing.