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12th April 1624

Proceedings in Parliament 1624: The House of Commons. Originally published by British History Online, 2015.

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In this section

MONDAY, 12 APRIL 1624

I. JOURNAL OF THE HOUSE OF COMMONS, PA, HC/CL/JO/1/13

[CJ 762; f. 129]

Lunae, 12 Aprilis 1624

L. 2. An act to enable Vincent Lowe to sell certain lands.

Committed to:

Attorney Wards

Sir William Cope

Knights, burgesses of Nottingham and Derby, York

Sir Robert Hitcham

Sir Charles Montagu

Mr. [John] Pym

Sir John Stradling

Mr. [William] Denny

Mr. [Francis] Fetherston[haugh]

Sir Robert More

Sir Walter Earle

[To]morrow, 2 [o']clock, Court of Wards. Notice to be given to the friends if the committee see cause.

L. 2. An act for the naturalizing of Peter Verbeake.

Committed to:

Mr. [William] Denny

Sir Thomas Hyrne

Sir Thomas Holland

Sir John Corbet

Knights, burgesses, London, Norfolk and Suffolk and the outports

Sir Charles Montagu

Sir William Cope

Tuesday next, Exchequer Chamber, 2 [o']clock.

MR. [JOHN] SAUNDERS. To have some added to the Aucher's bill.

Knights, burgesses, London, Buckingham, added to the committee of that bill.

[f. 129v] These gentlemen are to send some to attend the committee of the bill for them.

L. 1. An act to reverse a decree made in the Court of Whitehall, commonly called the Court of Requests.

L. 1. An act for the naturalizing of a daughter of Sir Edward Cecil, and divers others.

Oxford bill. Tomorrow afternoon, 4 [o']clock.

Amwell river. Thursday, 2 [o']clock.

Mr. Secretary [Calvert] sent up to the Lords to desire another time for the bill of monopolies, and also especially to recommend unto their Lordships care the bill of concealments.

L. 2. An act to prevent simony in colleges and halls.

Committed to:

Sir Edward Coke Mr. [John] Carvile
Sir George More Sir Robert Hatton
Sir Edward Giles Sir Gilbert Gerard
Sir Walter Earle Sir Daniel Norton
Mr. [John] Pym Sir Erasmus Dryden
Sir William Bulstrode Sir Robert More
Mr. [William] Boswell Sir John Stradling
Sir Benjamin Rudyard Sir Thomas Hoby
Sir Henry Mildmay Doctor [Barnaby] Gooch
Sir Nathaniel Rich
Sir Henry Poole

And all that come to have voice. Thursday, Court of Wards, 2 [o']clock.

[CJ 763] MR. SECRETARY [CALVERT]. Has attended the Lords. Desired another time for the conference. Had answer that for the monopolies, appointed tomorrow afternoon; and for the bill of concealments, had given it one reading already, and would give all the [f. 130] expedition that might be.

MR. SOLICITOR reports Sir Lewis Watson's bill without any alterations.

L. 3. An act for confirmation of exchange of lands between the most excellent Prince Charles and Sir Lewis Watson, kt. and baronet.

Upon question, passed for a law.

MR. [JOHN] BANKES brings in a bill to prevent the abuses of Clerks of Markets.

The Serjeant called to an account for [Matthias] Fowle.

Says he had a warrant for him. His father gave his word he should come to him next day and yield himself. Next day sent word he was a prisoner in the Fleet at the suit of a member of this Fleet [sic], Sir Guy Palmes.

MR. [JAMES] CLARKE. True Sir Guy Palmes had such a decree in Chancery against Fowle. Fowle told him he was enlarged to attend this House, being committed close prisoner.

SIR EDWARD COKE. To have the warden of the Fleet.

Ordered, that the warden of the Fleet shall attend this House, with Fowle, his prisoner, tomorrow morning at 8 [o']clock.

L. 1. An act to prevent the abuse of the Clerk of the Market.

MR. [CHRISTOPHER] BROOKE reports the bill for the cutlers of Hallamshire. The alterations twice read.

Ordered, to be engrossed.

[John] Mohun's bill. Tomorrow morning, 7 [o']clock, Exchequer Chamber.

[f. 130v] L. 2. An act for the reversing of outlawries.

Committed to:

Attorney Wards Mr. [John] Carvile
Mr. [James] Clarke Sir Thomas Lucy
Mr. Wandesford Sir John Drake
Sir Clement Throckmorton Mr. [John] Lowther
Sir William Cope Mr. [George] Mynne
Mr. [William] Lenthall Sir Henry Poole
Sir John Strangways
Serjeant [William] Towse
Serjeant [Richard] Digges
Mr. [Christopher] Brooke
Mr. [John] Whistler
Mr. [Christopher] Sherland
Sir Henry Spiller
Sir Thomas Belasyse
Mr. Berkeley
Sir John Danvers
Mr. [William] Noye

And all that will come to have voice. Wednesday next, 2 [o']clock, Court of Wards.

L. 1. An act for the true making of serges and perpetuanas.

SIR THOMAS HOBY. One county that has neither knights nor burgesses. Who shall present the recusants?

Bishop, a secretary [sic] that is a member of this House, to attend these gentlemen.

Knights, burgesses of York and Northumberland to do it, and Mr. [Edward] Liveley added to them.

L. 2. An act for the naturalizing of Sir Stephen Lesieur, knight.

L. 3. An act for the naturalizing of Sir Stephen Lesieur, knight.

Upon question, passed for a law.

[f. 131] Lord Montagu's bill. Tomorrow, 8 [o']clock.

[Henry] Lovell brought to the bar and there kneeling, made his submission. Says is very sorry that he has offended the House. Acknowledges the censure to be just.

Discharged, paying his fees.

Statutes, tomorrow, 8 o'clock.

SIR EDWIN SANDYS'S reports from the committee to examine the new impositions. This morning they met. A great many attendants, of merchants and others. Never heard such a complaint. The new impost on wines. Made no diligent inquiry into the first mover of it. Declared here to be the Lord Treasurer. He moved it to the lords of the Council. Found no other suggestor. For the proceeding of it, thus. The officers offered a copy of a privy seal for laying of £3 upon a tun upon all wines for one year for the urgent necessities of the Palatinate. They exceedingly complained of this. First, against all equity and use to be laid on their commodity without their privity. After they were gone to the vintage, then this laid. If they had known of it before, would have given over their trade. Dealt withal strangely. Wines taken from them, although paid half. Promised the charge should be laid on the vintners, but not so. Made many petitions and received extreme harsh usage and committed to the pursuivants. Told they should rot in prison if they paid it not. [Sir] Richard Clowberry, the merchant. The words spoken by my Lord Treasurer at Chelsea. Conclusion was they paid half in ready money and entered bond for the other. 3 years given them for that. At this time the Rochellers laid 30s. on every tun of wine. They lost that year a good part of their principal and utterly discouraged in their trade.

[f. 131v] 13 August 20 Jac. another privy seal issued out. This drew it down to one pound upon the tun. Here some error. This conceived to be to the next Parliament, but they find no such thing and a misinformation to the King. Said to lay it on the voluntary consent of the merchants here, Rhenish wines omitted. They deny this consent, but say when they were in bond for the second moiety they were suitors to have the King take 20s. until their bonds were discharged. Every day pursuivants at their backs until they had yielded to this. They complain that if this imposition continue they are utterly undone. Some of them pay double their estates. In one year have paid the King for 7 or eight 8 thousand tun. Almost £30,000. For 2 years among them all, not gained £2,000. The officer acknowledges £44,000 within 2 years in London upon this new imposition. Pay centum per centum and sometimes more; whereas to pay but 5 per cent £5 2s. English the tun. For this goes to the King 6 or 7 pounds. The Israelites in Egypt never in greater bondage they said. For the public, complained that were it not for these customs, were able to drive as much trade. That conceived in writing.

For the grocery wares, a warrant by Mr. [Abraham] Jacob from the Lord Treasurer to levy this composition money in London and other outports. So that they conceive this to be no error, but done by my Lord Treasurer's direction. For the sugars, muscovado, set in the new book at £5. Think it a mere error of the printer. Cannot find it was ever raised or any warrant to have it printed. For the farm of the sugars, farmers paid £5,500 a year.

Now a great diminution in the King's revenue. Let at £2,000 a year to 2 of my Lord Treasurer's men. [f. 132] One of the under farmers said that [Nicholas] Herman and [Thomas] Catchmay had let out these farms for 6,000 pound a year to the grand farmers. They pay so for them. By virtue of the King's seal privy, an allowance made [illegible] to the merchant. This not made in the commodity of sugar upon exportation of it. Lastly, for printing of the new book, a copy, 22 October 1623, of a privy seal for printing of this book. His warrant to Mr. [Thomas] Lever to see the book printed, together with a schedule of the particularities, just as the book is printed. For suppressing of it, book bears date 5th December last. About the 12th, this book suppressed by command from the Lord Treasurer, first, for some few days, after, during my Lord's pleasure. Messages sent to Mr. Lever about this.

SIR ROBERT PYE. To have the schedule seen, whether the sugars were in.

MR. [JOHN] GLANVILLE. One thing omitted: a course taken to send for all the vintners to make them buy it, and so the price of wine presently raised.

SIR EDWARD COKE. What now fit to be done? To have this matter, as now opened, referred to the general committee of grievances, that when my Lord heard we may take this, with other things, that are to be transmitted.

MR. [ROBERT] BATEMAN. These impositions on the wines now paid accounted for to his Majesty, though the subject has parted with it.

Mr. Speaker to be here after dinner.

Resolved, the consideration of this matter of impositions now reported shall be referred to the committee of grievances, and Mr. [John] Guy's motion.

[CJ 764; f. 132v] Lunae, 12 Aprilis, post meridiem

SIR EDWARD COKE reports from the committee of grievances. Earl of Middlesex has had several charges. First, concerning the Court of Wards. Secondly, for receiving £500 out of the petty farms to procure the warrant. 8 months, suitors to him for recompense for their loss. Could not get it until they had given him £500.

Ingenii dominus, plerumque peccati servus. [Abraham] Jacob denied this £500 given to the Lord Treasurer. [Bernard] Hide, [Abraham] Dawes, [Henry] Garway and [Richard] Bishop to prove this. For the other £500, Garway, [Sir John] Wolstenholme, [John] Williams and others. The committee resolved that sufficient matter found super totam materiam to present it to the Lords.

SIR ROBERT PHELIPS. Concerning the particulars of the impost on the wines, his opinion he will give with much caution towards his Majesty. To let the right of imposing sleep a while. Necessary to represent this as a fault in the Lord Treasurer and an injury to the commonwealth. Clear he was the projector. Injury done, to lay a surcharge of custom on the goods of merchants and so mediately on the whole kingdom. The honour of his Majesty deeply engaged in this. £3 laid contrary to the contract made with the King, and contrary to his royal word given. To have this part also complained of in the third place.

MR. [WILLIAM] NOYE. Inclines to no opinion he has yet heard. Not to complain of imposition simply as impost. To complain of it and of them that advised it for their own profit.

[f. 133] SIR EDWIN SANDYS. Differs from the last opinion. Lord Treasurer no cause of this imposition with respect to his own private ends. This a matter of so great consequence that if brought in but upon the by, it would infinitely discontent the subject. The imposition not laid to gain the £500. Besides, the matter of the grocery: a general complaint against that. He gave his warrant to levy that. So the matter of sugars. A gain to him directly of £4,000 a year. Not to leave this uncomplained of.

SIR JOHN SAVILE. 2 charges against the Treasurer. For the bribery, has heard it; but not the other. The first plainly proved; but for impositions, no such thing rests upon him. To speak to them directly and plainly and not upon the by. To waive the impositions at that time.

SIR THOMAS WENTWORTH. Thinks this imposition the greatest offence of all. A business of so tender nature that not to be touched upon the by. To leave it unto the complaint of others.

SIR THOMAS JERMYN. To have the imposition now presented. To have it as ill accompanied as may. It may be the King will like it the worse for the company it keeps. Noscitur ex socio.

MR. [EDWARD] SPENCER. To have the committee take consideration of the King's promise in 12 that he would lay no imposition.

CHANCELLOR DUCHY. If this matter of imposition now offered, to be done with a very tender hand. May open a gap for him to lay hold on the horns of the altar. May do it with that caution.

[f. 133v] Resolved, upon question, super totam materiam. That there is good ground to present unto the Lords the first bribe of £500 received by my Lord Treasurer out of the petty farms and of the second bribe of £500 received by him out of the great farms. And also that the charge concerning the Court of Wards, in converting wardships and extorting fees, shall be presented also to the Lords; and also the imposition on wines, the matter of the sugars and the composition for grocery.

Resolved, that a select committee shall reduce into form and present to the House the frame and model.

Sir Edward Coke Mr. Solicitor
Sir Edwin Sandys Sir Edward Peyton
Sir Dudley Digges Sir Robert Killigrew
Mr. Recorder Sir Thomas Jermyn
Sir Robert Phelips Sir John Hippisley
Chancellor Duchy Sir M[iles] Fleetwood
Mr. [John] Coke Sir William Spencer
Sir Thomas Wentworth Mr. [Edward] Spencer
Sir Thomas Hoby Mr. [Charles] Price
Sir Peter Heyman Mr. [William] Noye
Sir Francis Barrington Sir Henry Poole
[William] Lord Cavendish Sir Robert Harley
Sir John Eliot
Mr. Wandesford

These are to meet tomorrow morning at 7 [o']clock in the Court of Wards.

[House adjourned]

II. DIARY OF JOHN HOLLES, BL, HARL. MS 6,383

[f. 129v]

Monday, 12th of April

To sow wheat after wheat is metal upon metal.

At the committee of grievances in the afternoon

The Serjeant brought in the [Lord] Treasurer's answer delivered him by [Richard] Willis, his secretary. The House returned back the paper to be brought in by Willis himself and signed by him to be the Lord Treasurer's act.

The effect of his answer. He denies the receipt of the £500 of [Abraham] Jacob, [Bernard] Hide and [Henry] Garway from the petty farmers, or any sum at all. He denies also the other £500 for taking the security for the great farms. That he never heard of it until now in Parliament. That he had the £1,000 in recompense of his four 32 parts in the great farms. This he protests in the faith of a Christian to be true and desires the House to take a speedy course for clearing his honour. [f. 130] He puts himself upon the oaths of the witnesses.

The whole answer was written by his secretary, and in his secretary's name, saying "his Lordship" and "his Lord", but nothing in his own name.

Sir Edward Coke. Method is an excellent thing, but it is but an accessary to matter.

Mr. Recorder. There is nothing in this paper but might have been said on Saturday; nay, it was all said by Jacob. We will do his desire; he covets to be cleared by oath, whereby he intimates he would be sent to the Lords, wherein we will satisfy his desire, and not send it up as a bare accusation, for we must do something more, we must deliver our opinions. Jacob himself confessed he said something must be given my Lord Treasurer. He called his imposition of £3 upon a tun of wine plain robbery, being more than extortion, when the merchants had brought in their wines and covenanted to pay so much for them. The rent [sic] of the great farms being £48,000 and divided into 32 parts, every man bound in £1,500 apiece. He concluded he thought it fit to be sent up.

Sir Thomas Hoby moved 2 questions: whether it should be sent up or no; then to choose a committee to consider of the manner.

Sir Dudley Digges. If there were no more against him but these two £500, he would be loath to send him up. He would present the fault to the Lords in general without touching upon particulars.

Sir Robert Phelips. The Treasurer's charge is of 3 parts:

  • 1. The two bribes of £500 apiece.
  • 2. Altering the orders of the Court of Wards.
  • 3. New impositions upon wine and sugar, which is the worst.

[f. 130v] Besides, he was a principal instrument in dissolving the last Parliament, and a projector of the benevolence and a most violent prosecutor thereof. And what other can follow upon such a man that makes a separation between a good king and his people than the ruin of the party.

Sir Edward Coke. A lord treasurer is sworn to serve the king and his people. No treasurer, chancellor, warden of the privy seal, or sworn councillor shall take any manner of gift or brokerage for doing his office upon forfeiture of treble to what he had taken and satisfying all parties, commitment, fine and ransom at the king's pleasure, and losing his office. This is in the Parliament Rolls, 11mo of Henry the 4th.

III. DIARY OF SIR THOMAS JERVOISE, HAMPSHIRE RECORD OFFICE, 44M69/F4/20/1

[p. 125]

[12 April 1624]

At the committee of grievances, Monday, in the afternoon, 12 April

The Clerk of the Market is to bring in their patent this day sevennight to this committee.

Sir Richard Lydall came to a hearing for the patent of Staplers.

The bonds of those that were bound then touching this business called in. There has been [£]6[,000] or £7,000 received of the Staplers.

The Lord Treasurer appeared not this day, which was appointed him by his own request, but only sent a paper for his answer, the effect whereof is. To the 2 charges, first, for the £500 gratuity presented to him by the petty farmers as is supposed, he denies any such receipt. For the other [£]500 received of the great farm for accepting their security, being formerly refused, he likewise denies, but says that he having a part of the [p. 126] in the [sic] great farm did receive for his part, being 23 [sic] parts, of Mr. [Abraham] Jacob £1,000 for his interest therein, and for no other purpose as he protest[s] upon the faith of a Christian is true.

Sir Edward Coke says about 3 years ago there was a lease of the small farm, let by the King unto the farmers, wherein the King did covenant and likewise promise upon the word of a king that there should be no manner of imposition set upon wines during that lease, whereupon the farmers did let him have £50,000. Yet notwithstanding, the Lord Treasurer did set so great an imposition as the merchants do protest that they are almost undone and are willing to leave their trading. And notwithstanding the King's covenant and word, yet the Lord Treasurer did to this day, as appears by a warrant under his own hand, set impositions upon the petty farms of wines and currants to the great loss of the farmers.

[p. 127] The Lord Treasurer, upon question of the House, it is concluded he shall be for the corrupt bribe of the £500 taken of the petty farmers and for the like corrupt bribe take[n] of the great farmers, and for his stamp and extortion of double fees in the Court of Wards, and for laying impositions upon grocery, and the £3 and xxs. upon wine, is to be returned up to the Lords, and a committee is appointed to draw it into a method fit for their Lordships' acceptance, but before it goes it is to be presented to the House.

IV. DIARY OF JOHN LOWTHER, CUMBRIA ARCHIVE CENTRE, CARLISLE, DLONS/L/2/1

[f. 58v]

[12 April 1624]

A bill to reverse a decree in the Court of Requests between [John] Edwards, father and son, contrary to covenants of marriage.

A bill to reverse [sic] Sir Edward Cecil's daughter, [Sir John] Ogle's 7 children [sic], [Sir Charles] Morgan['s daughter] and [Sir William] St. Leger and their wives [sic].

[f. 59] A bill for simony for colleges and fellowships.

The bill for reversing outlawries. To be committed, Wednesday, Court of Wards, all [to have] voice.

[The bill for Vincent] Lee [sic] to sell land to pay debts. Committed.

A pill [sic] for search of stuffs, serges.

A bill for [Sir] Stephen Lesieur of Geneva. The committee divided.

SIR EDWIN SANDYS reports a cry of all merchants of impositions for wines. Satisfied it was by the Lord Treasurer's project, without any inducer or other projector. 14 January 19 Jac. a privy seal of £3 a tun of all wines for a year for help of the Palatinate. Against equity, against use without their knowledge when they returned, which if they had foreknown they would have given over their trade. It was executed, and their wines was [sic] taken until paid, and a proviso that the vintner should paid but did not. The Lord Treasurer gave harsh answer. The Lord Treasurer said to rot in prison, and committed Sir Richard Clowberry who had paid £50,000 custom lately. The Rochellers laid 30s. a tun, the [?mariners] 20s. That year they lost most of their principal.

13 August 20 Jac. another privy seal drew it down to 20s. a tun, but made perpetual, whereas it was but for time. This is done as privy seal says by the merchants' consent, which they deny, [f. 59v] but only for other matters to return their bonds, and daily pursued by pursuivants, which they say is no[t] voluntary. They say if their bonds be not redelivered, they are all undone. He has had in impositions £54,000, they not gained £1,500. They pay centum per centum in a year for wine, as £5 for wine in a tun. The custom now £4, the charge 24s., the leakage 40s.

Grief speaks bitterly that the Israelites in Egypt was never in greater bondage. That one in many years not advanced in that trade. They could drive double trade if eased. In October 1622, Mr. [Abraham] Jacob presents a warrant from the Lord Treasurer to levy the composition of the Grocers of London and outports, though the Lord Treasurer denied it.

The sugars muscavdoes £5 for 50s. in farm to [Thomas] Harris [sic] of [£]5,000 and £500 rent after 10,000 marks. Now let to [Nicholas] Herman and [Thomas] Catchmay at £2,000 rent. The reason desired, and shows how they let it out at £6,000 by year to the great farmers. That by value of the King's privy seal, that all foreign commodities imported if exported within a year to be lessened in custom, yet pay whole custom. The privy seal for the new book does express the particulars of the new Book [f. 60] of Rates with a schedule returned to the Lord Treasurer examined with the book. The book after a while suppressed from day to day for a week and so until the Lord Treasurer's pleasure should be known.

[MR. JOHN] GLANVILLE adds how the imposition raises the price here, and shows how the vintners were sent for and compelled to buy them so as he should gain.

SIR E[DWARD] COKE. To have this joined with the rest and to be transmitted with the rest.

MR. [ROBERT] BATEMAN. That the imposition of the wines is not yet accounted for to the King and so he no better, though the subject paid.

The Lord Treasurer, contrary to the order in the Exchequer, raised composition of those of Bristol. That no goods to be landed until such composition made as he demanded. The secretary gave a copy of a letter contrary to that he sent, which was to raise the exaction.

[Afternoon, committee for grievances]

A petition of the abuse of the Clerk of the Market, for drawing all before him and [?taking] moneys without view of measures in Monmouth, [?Carmarthen] etc.

Sir Richard Lydall ordered to bring in the bonds he took for Staplers of those to be enfranchised. [£]100-£10 a man, a £1,000 to the Staplers by £10, [£]10,000 to the monopolies all bonds void are brought in.

[f. 60v] The Lord Treasurer's answer sent in paper by his secretary, [Richard] Williams [sic], under his hand to the 2 £500. He denies the receipt of the £500 for the petty farm by [Bernard] Hide. To the other of £500 upon the refusal of Sir Philip Carey he denies it or how, but he says he had £1,000 of Jacob for his interest in the 4:32 parts of the great farm. This he protests upon the faith of a Christian and hopes the witnesses will clear it upon oath. Paid in an entire sum. So he has done nothing against the trust of his place, nor against the King's profit.

Sir Miles Fleetwood. First, Sir John Wolstenholme, [Henry] Garway, [Mr. Maurice] Abbot, [blank] took all. Paid all rent payable by them, when some sureties refused as Nathaniel, Garway, Carey, etc. Second, they refusing were not nominated by him nor assigned not to him, but the patentees referred therein, and kept them a year denied without demand by the Lord Treasurer.

[f. 61] [Mr.] Recorder. It is robbery by extortion. That this cause should be [?demitted] and charged upon divers persons to report it at a conference, not by one as Sir Robert Phelips would have.

Sir Robert Phelips. Divides into 3 parts:

  • 1. Bribes.
  • 2. Court of Wards.
  • 3. Impositions.

That he believes him an instrument in the dissolution of Parliament, in the moving and persecuting the benevolence. The imposition a blemish to the King's honour, a breach of his word. That when king and people are kept in sunder by bad persons, when they meet it is the ruin of those persons. That a just thing cannot be done but as a bribe, nor his office be exacted in the second.

Sir John Eliot. That it is a prodigious comet that is easier to see the effects than the cause. That their attraction is by the sun in the end because monstrous. The greatness of the person provokes him to speak, the greater the person, the gr [sic] greater the punishment by reason of the example. His censure out of a free honest part unworthy the favour of king, people, or place and so to be commanded.

[f. 61v] The first question of the petty farm to be presented by general vote.

So of the second, the great farm.

Sir E[dward Coke]. [Sir William] Thorp, justice of assizes in Lincoln, compassionated young gentlemen indicted of murder, had £80 to give them stay until next assizes. The king's oath commanded to the justices nullo negebimus vendemus differmus so he had judgement to be hanged quia feloniae. The Lord Treasurer judge of [Ex]chequer in the king's revenue. He is sworn truly to serve the king and his people, and do right to poor and rich in all that appertains to his office. You shall purchase the king's profit so far as you may. You shall as a councillor shall [sic] truly counsel and advise the king justly and evenly. Wards sworn to do things to keep the king's revenue, you shall truly keep the king's seal.

10 H. 4 Parliament Roll not printed, no chancellor, treasurer, councillor nor officer of the king shall take gift brokerage [f. 62] for doing his office upon pain of treble, satisfy the party and punishable at the pleasure of the king and no more to be in office. Respited from printing by command of the Prince. H. 5 Wild committed by a judge for striking him. The King thanked God that he had a judge dare commit and a son that would obey.

V. DIARY OF EDWARD NICHOLAS, TNA, SP 14/166

[f. 140v]

Monday, 12th of April 1624

An act to enable Mr. Vincent Lowe to sell lands in comitatu Derby for the payment of debts. 2. L., committed.

An act for the naturalizing of Peter Verbeake, a Hollander, merchant of London [sic]. r. p. This man has now here taken both oaths of allegiance and supremacy.

MR. [ROBERT] BATEMAN says that in the Low Countries they will not permit a tailor or barber to live amongst their Merchant Adventurers, and therefore he would not have it committed.

This bill is committed.

An act for reversing of a decree made in the Court of Whitehall, commonly called the Court of Requests, [f. 141] between John Edwards, esq., plaintiff, and John Edwards, his son and heir, and Richard Sherborne, gent., defendants, made in July last. 1. L.

An act for the naturalizing of one daughter of Sir Edward Cecil, kt., called Dame Albinia Wray; the wife and one daughter of Sir Charles Morgan, kt.; the wife and 7 daughters of Sir John Ogle, kt.; the wife and one daughter of Sir John [sic] St. Leger, kt.; and the son of Sir John Prowde, kt. 1. L.

An act to prevent simony and abuses in elections in colleges and halls. 2. L.

By this bill there is an oath prescribed to be taken by the patron as well as by the incumbent that shall be presented that there is no consideration given or taken directly nor indirectly, and the like by all masters and fellows of all colleges. Dormit. Committed to sit Thursday in Court of Wards.

The Serjeant of this House says that Mr. [Matthias] Fowle is a prisoner in the Fleet at the suit of Sir Guy Palmes.

SIR GUY PALMES says he knows nothing of this business and thinks it a juggling between Fowle and the warden of the Fleet, but Mr. [James] Clarke of this House, who followed this business for him, knows more of the decree which he had in Chancery 3 years since against him.

MR. [JAMES] CLARKE says that 3 y[ears] since, there was a decree made in Chancery at the suit of Sir G[uy] Palmes against Fowle, whereon he was arrested and imprisoned in the Fleet. That he seeing Fowle abroad, got order from the Lord Keeper that he should be close prisoner, since which before Easter seeing Fowle abroad he blamed the said warden, who said he was abroad only to attend this House, since which time he has done nothing.

Ordered that the warden of the Fleet and Fowle shall be here tomorrow morning to give answer to this here in the House.

[f. 141v] An act for the better ordering of the office of the Clerk of the Market and reformation of false weights and measures. 2. L. [sic], committed and all that will come to have voice, Saturday in the Star Chamber.

An act for taking of bail upon the reversing of outlawries and to prevent many abuses committed by under-shrieves and attorneys. 2. L., committed. Dormit.

An act for the true making of serges or perpetuanas. 2. L. [sic].

Ordered that the knights and burgesses of Yorkshire and Northumberland and the Bishop of Durham's secretary shall all join (because the county of Durham has no knights nor burgesses in Parliament) to inquire and present to this House the names of all such persons as, being convicted or justly suspected papists, hold any place of charge or trust in that county.

An act for the naturalizing of Sir Stephen Lesieur, kt., born in Geneva. 2. L.

This bill has this day again a 3. L. and is now passed this House. It came from the Lords. r. p.

Mr. [Henry] Lovell this day makes here on his knee a submission and acknowledgement of his fault and the justice of this House in punishing him for it, and so being by the Speaker admonished never to commit the like offence again against this House he is discharged.

The Speaker leaves the chair that Mr. [William] Noye might sit therein concerning the bill of continuance and repeal of statutes.

Sir Thomas Hoby says that peas and beans are the chief food of the poor and they make bread of it and therefore he would have it lawful to transport those pulse[s] at the same rates as they were before without raising it.

[f. 142] Sir John Savile says that if the price of rye, peas and beans be not raised, then will all husbandmen sow little of those grains, for they will sow that whereby they may reap the best harvest. He would have it lawful to transport rye when it is not above 20s.

Mr. Comptroller says that the commissioners appointed by the King for consideration of these businesses did think 18s. the quarter an indifferent rate and proportionable to 32s. the quarter of wheat as by the proclamation appears.

Mr. [John] Lister says that in the north, rye did bear near the rate of wheat and if there be not some proportion held in it with wheat it will make little of it sown. He thinks 24s. a reasonable rate.

Sir Thomas Hoby says that he thinks 20s. a good rate for rye.

Sir Robert Harley would have the rate of rye to be at 20s. at the least, for in Herefordshire and the countries adjoining there is much rye sown and it is usually within 12d. of the bushel as dear as wheat, and if we raise not the rate of rye proportionable to that of wheat men will not sow their grounds, for if a husbandman cannot have for a bushel of it so much as will buy him a pair of shoes. And we must not have so much care of the poor as to neglect those that keep them who are the gent[lemen] farmers and husbandmen.

Ordered that it shall be lawful to transport rye when it is not above the price of 20s., and peas and beans not above 16s.

Sir John Savile says that there is more charge and pains in the tillage [f. 142v] for barley than for wheat. We must take care that the farmer and husbandmen be encouraged, for then the poor will not want. He would have it set at 20s. the quarter.

Mr. [John] More says that barley is the most necessary grain of all for the poor and others and unfittest to be transported, and therefore would have the price set very low that little or none of it may be transported.

Mr. [Edward] Alford would have the rate of barley set at 16s. for he thinks that the poor will never have it at a lower price than that which shall be set for the transporting of it.

Sir John Savile says that no barley is transported but for provender for horses and cattle, for there is none eaten of it beyond sea, but would have a care taken against transportation of malt.

Mr. [William] Marlott says that he has paid custom for transportation of above 5,000 quarters of barley, and there is much in Sussex and Norfolk every year transported, above 20,000 quarters of barley, it being under the rate in the statute.

Ordered that [illegible] it shall be lawful to transport barley and malt when it is not above the price of 16s. the quarter.

Speaker goes to the chair.

SIR EDWIN SANDYS reports from the committee appointed to consider of those that imposed new impositions. That the committee received satisfaction by the speech of Secretary Calvert that the Lord Treasurer was the first propounder of the new impost on wines, for which there was a privy seal showed from the King wherein it was expressed that over and above all other impositions there should be paid £3 on a [f. 143] tun of wine; but in the privy seal, dated 14 January 19 Jac., it was expressed it should stand but for that vintage and to supply the necessity of the King's children. The merchants complain that the[y] had no warning that this imposition should be laid, that when they complained of this to the Lord Treasurer, and one Sir Richard Clowberry (who with his brother paid £8,000 custom to the King in two years) said that the Lord Treasurer committed him to custody of a pursuivant, saying that unless he would pay the £3 on a tun he should rot in prison, and that much ill language was given by the Lord Treasurer to those merchants that complained, and they were constrained to pay that impost and give security for the payment of it in 3 y[ears].

Another privy seal, dated August [blank], wherein it is mentioned that the King lays the imposition of 20s. on a tun of wine with the consent and at the humble suit of the merchants, wherein the King was misinformed, for the merchants say they gave not their consents to this imposition of 20s. a tun, but were suitors to pay the £3 impost for which they gave bond to the King should be paid by 20s. a year. Some merchants complained to the committee that they thought that the servitudes of the Israelites was not greater than theirs is, by reason of these impositions, which do exceed the price paid for wine by the merchant. They say they are all near undone by the same, and if their company be surveyed there is not one that has [f. 143v] raised any estate of late years and if it were not for these impositions they could drive twice as great a trade.

That the farm of the sugars is let now to Mr. [Nicholas] Herman and Mr. [Thomas] Catchmay (two of the Lord Treasurer's servants) for £2,000 per annum and that they let the same for £6,000 per annum to the great farmers. That the allowance of sugar is not made to the merchants as it was wont, which is a cause of decay of that commodity. That the book, that which is printed concerning the rates of groceries, etc., was printed by warrant from the Lord Treasurer, dated 50 Decembris, and the order for the suppressing of the book was dated 120 Decembris, and that the schedule of that book is according to the warrant from the Lord Treasurer.

MR. [JOHN] GLANVILLE adds that the reporter did omit to report that when this imposition was laid, there was a course taken with the vintners by the Lord Treasurer that the wines should be all bought from the merchants notwithstanding the imposition, and thereon grew the general raising of the price of wines.

MR. [ROBERT] BATEMAN says that it was told this committee (appointed for consideration of this business) that of all these moneys raised for these impositions, nothing was accounted for as yet to the King and it was not known where the same rests.

MR. [JOHN] GUY complains that young [Abraham] Jacob, secretary to the Lord Treasurer, delivered him a false copy of the Lord Treasurer's letter written [f. 144] to the ports concerning groceries.

Ordered that the matters now reported concerning these impositions and the Lord Treasurer's carriage by occasion thereof shall be considered of by the committee of grievances.

[Afternoon]

Monday, committee, 120 Aprilis 1624, committee of grievances

Mr. [Richard] Willis, secretary to the Lord Treasurer, brings his Lord's answer in writing concerning the bribes wherewith his Lordship stands here in this House charged. The effect whereof is that to the £500 given by the petty farms he denies it, and never knew anything of it until Christmas last when his Lordship first found himself wronged by that report. To the other £500 given by the grand farmers, he denies to have heard anything thereof until the complaint in Parliament. But he having a right to five 32 parts, upon the relinquishment of Sir Philip Carey and others, sold the same to Mr. Abraham Jacob for £1,000, which he received of him. That he doubts not but when those that have here testified against him shall be examined on oath, they will clear his Lordship. This answer he protests on the faith of a Christian to be true, desiring withal that by the favour of this House there may be some speedy course taken for the discovery of the truth hereof upon oath and for the repair of his honour.

Sir Miles Fleetwood. That the Lord Treasurer bringing the 2 £500 together seems to lay the reason of the taking of that £1,000 for the 5 32 parts which were in his Lordship's disposing on the relinquishment of Sir P[hilip] Carey and others. But he has witnesses to prove that the 5 parties that relinquished their 5 32 parts did hold and were to have held it as from the great farmers, and were nominated [f. 144v] or allowed by the great farmers, and did, when they relinquished, deliver over and surrender their several 32 parts to the great farmers.

Sir Edward Coke. That about 3 y[ears] since, there was a lease made of the custom of wines wherein there was a covenant that no new imposition should be laid, whereon the farmers of the wines had also the King's word in verbo regio (upon the payment of £50,000 beforehand) that all covenants in that lease should be performed. On the laying of this imposition on the wines, the farmers preferred a petition of right in the Exchequer Chamber and prayed that the King's Attorney might give answer thereto, but could not have any answer therein. And at length they themselves petitioned the King that they might enjoy the benefit of their lease and that his Majesty would himself hear their complaint or that his Majesty would be pleased to refer the consideration thereof to the lords of the Privy Council, they having been delayed in their humble suit thereabout by the space of 10 months without relief. This petition was delivered by Mr. [Bernard] Hide and Henry Garway.

Sir Edward Coke adds that the Lord Treasurer knowing the covenants of the lease to the farmers of the wines and that the King on good consideration did promise in verbo regio that nothing should be done to the prejudice of those covenants, he says that that the Lord Treasurer had been better and it had been more for the King's honour to have advised his Majesty to have sold Greenwich for the payment of those farmers.

[f. 145] Mr. John Williams, examined, says that he was to have had a 32 part of the great farms for himself and when he relinquished it to the farmers themselves and had therein nothing to do with the Lord Treasurer.

Mr. Allen Carey, examined, says as Mr. Williams said.

Mr. [Thomas] Symonds, examined, says that he was to have had a 32 part by the means of Sir John Wolstenholme, one of the great farmers, and when he relinquished it he did it to the use of the great farmers.

Mr. John Williams, examined, says that there was an account of the great farms for the y[ear] 1622 at July last. He made that account to Mr. [Maurice] Abbot and Sir John Wolstenholme. That the profit and gain of that account for the year 1622 was only to the great farmers and the Lord Treasurer had not, neither was his Lordship to have any part of gain by that account.

Mr. [Abraham] Dawes, examined, says that on the making up of the account of the great farmers for the y[ear] 1622, the Lord Treasurer was not to have any part of the benefit thereof.

Mr. Recorder says that the first £500 taken by the Lord Treasurer was occasioned by the new impost of £3 on a tun of wine imposed in January when all merchants had ships abroad to fetch home their wines, whereas the merchants said if they had known of the impositions before they had bought their wines, and it had been as lawful to impose £3 on every tun of wine in the merchants' cellars. That his Lordship sold in this the King's honour. [f. 145v] That the Lord Treasurer did, by taking of the second £500, did [sic] weaken the security that he took for the King, and it is apparent by all the witnesses that the Lord Treasurer had no part in the great farms. He would have this business against the Lord Treasurer sent up to the Lords.

Sir D[udley] Digges says that if there were nothing else against the Lord Treasurer but these 2 500 pounds he would not agree to the sending of it to the Lords, but would have the matter of impositions (caused by a kind of people that come out of the City of London to ruin themselves and all that give ear to them) proceeded in that there may be a reformation thereof.

Sir Edward [sic] Phelips. He thinks that the Lord Treasurer's answer to the 2 bribes was traced out by Mr. Jacob. He believes that the Lord Treasurer was one that advised the King to the dissolution of the last Parliament and to the giving of the benevolences after that dissolution as he thinks many of those who gave benevolences will or can testify, and that his Lordship carried himself violently in it. That by this we may see though such men may keep the King and people asunder for a while, yet they will come again together to the ruin of themselves. That the Lord Treasurer's answer is weak, subtle and artificial. He would have this business presented to the Lords.

Sir John Eliot would have the Lord Treasurer presented to the Lords as a man unworthy of the favour of his country or his King.

[f. 146] Ordered that it shall be presented to the Lords that the Lord Treasurer took corruptly of the petty farms £500 and of the great farms corruptly £500, and that it is fit that the alterations of the instructions of the Court of Wards and the taking of the double fees in that court should likewise be presented to the Lords.

Sir Edward Coke. That Sir Robert [sic] Thorp, a judge [blank] in 20 H. 3 [sic] for taking of £80 for the deferring of justice on seven young gentlemen who were accused for burglary and robberies, was adjudged for taking munus corrupté et felonicé. That the Lord Treasurer is sworn that he shall well and truly serve the king and his people, that he shall do faithfully and well for the king's profit; as a councillor sworn that he shall well, truly and faithfully counsel and advise the king. His Lordship is sworn also for the Court of Wards that he shall honestly procure the king's profit and that which may advance the right of the crown, that he shall carefully keep the king's seal of that house. H. 5 that no judge shall take any reward, gift or brokerage; this is in the Parliament Roll but was not put in print because the King so commanded. He takes it that the Lord Treasurer's faults [f. 146v] do all trench on the Lord Treasurer's oath.

The Speaker in the chair.

SIR ROBERT PHELIPS would have the laying of the impost on the wine [to] be presented to the Lords in the third place.

MR. [WILLIAM] NOYE says that he would not have the charge of laying of an impost laid to the Lord Treasurer, for he would we should decline the dispute of laying an imposition in a general manner, but acquaint the Lords that the Lord Treasurer has laid an impost for a particular profit to himself.

SIR EDWIN SANDYS says that he does not conceive nor find that the Lord Treasurer was a cause of laying the imposition of wine nor any other for his own particular profit. He would not have us meddle with the right of laying of impositions but with the surcharge of that imposition, which makes merchants leave off their trade as themselves say they will and must unless the impositions be taken off. That he would have also presented to the Lords the Lord Treasurer's having of the customs on sugar for the rent of £2,000, it being let forth for £6,000, which it may be his Lordship will answer that it pleased the King to give him as a reward for his service; but that will be better to be answered in the other House, and therefore he would [have] it presented to the Lords.

SIR THOMAS WENTWORTH would have the laying of the impositions presented to the Lords as a violation of the rights and liberties of the subject, and not have it coloured with other terms.

[f. 147] MR. THOMAS [sic] SPENCER says that by the King's letters patents in 120 Jac. it was granted that such impost as should be paid for any goods imported should be repaid to those that would export the same again within a year. Yet by a private order there was a restraint that such impost should not be repaid. He desires that this might also be considered of by the committee that shall collect and present these businesses to the Lords against the Lord Treasurer.

Ordered by the House, on question, that there is good ground to present to the Lords the matter of the bribe of £500 given to the Lord Treasurer by the petty farms and that £500 given by the grand farmers, and that the charge against the Lord Treasurer for the alteration of the instructions of the Court of Wards, and that touching the stamp and that concerning the increasing of double fees in the Court of Wards [?and] that the three particulars of imposition on the wines, the sugars and the groceries. And that there shall be a select committee to consider and set down the form and order how all these things shall be presented to the Lords.

VI. DIARY OF SIR WILLIAM SPRING, HOUGHTON LIBRARY, HARVARD UNIVERSITY, MS ENG. 980

[p. 205]

Monday, the 12th of April

[Blank]

An act that came from the Lords concerning lands exchanged between the Prince and Sir Lewis Watson, baronet. It is reported by the SOLICITOR and passed.

The Serjeant of the House informs that whereas he had a warrant to bring one [Matthias] Fowle to the House, that he is prisoner in the Fleet and that he had no warrant to fetch him thence.

It is ordered that the warden of the Fleet shall bring him tomorrow and attend the House to show why he lies there and why he has had his liberty to go abroad. The business for Fowle was concerning the patent for gold and silver thread, etc.

An act for better ordering the Clerk of the Market.

MR. [CHRISTOPHER] BROOKE reports the bill for cutlers in Hallamshire in the county of York and it is ordered to be engrossed and/

[p. 206] A committee is appointed to draw a preamble to the bill of subsidy.

An act for reversing outlawries. Committed.

An act for the making of serges and perpetuanas. Committed [sic].

An act for naturalizing Sir James [sic] Lesieur. Passed.

[Henry] Lovell is brought to the bar, humbles himself on his knees, submits himself and confesses his fault, prays the favour of the House and is discharged.

Mr. [William] Noye sat upon continuance of statutes and the Speaker went out of the chair. The House sat as a committee about it.

After, the Speaker went into the chair again and SIR EDWIN SANDYS reports the committee of trade, and that the committee judged my Lord Treasurer to be the author of the new impositions of wines. That by warrant of a privy seal there was £3 per tun laid upon the wines brought in the nineteen year of the King, and that the wines then come in (in the port of London) were 2,700 tun, and that both hard words and deeds were offered by the Lord Treasurer to the merchants, and that at Chelsea he had said to one of them that if he would not pay this he should rot in prison. That by this the merchants were discouraged for the great exactions at home and the loss sustained abroad, and that they intended to give over the trade. That a privy seal was also granted to raise 20s. per tun of wine, pretending it was with the merchants' consent. That the pursuivants did attend and vex the merchants to enforce them to pay it, that some merchants have paid the King £8,000 in one [sic] year for impositions, and that within this 4 [sic] years they have paid the King [£]44,000 for these new impositions, and that the merchant[s] did justify they paid centum per centum; that is, a hundred pound charges for a hundred pound laid out in commodities. That for cognac wine they pay £5 the tun. The King's old reckonings £3 per tun, the new [blank], the freight 20s., the leakage 40s., and this is more than the first value of the commodity. They say that they [p. 207] think Egypt did never hold the Israelites in worse bondage, that no one of the merchants has raised a fortune this many years and all through the impositions.

That for grocery there was a letter shown from the Lord Treasurer to levy the imposition both in London and the outports, and that it was under my Lord's hand. That for the muscovadoes (a coarse sugar) in Queen Elizabeth's [sic] time, the custom was rented at £5,500 per annum, and after for 1,000 [sic] marks, and that now two of my Lord Treasurer's men have it, [Nicholas] Herman and [Thomas] Catchmay, for £2,000 per annum, and that it was looked into why it should fall in the worth to the King, and inquiry made whether the commodity did diminish so much or not, and it appeared that these 2 men did let it again to others for £6,000 per annum. That the usual allowances of [blank] are not now allowed to the merchant, so that the exactions are increased and the due allowance detracted. That a book of these impositions was printed, by the Lord Treasurer's warrant, at the 5th of September [sic] last, and recalled again the 12th until his Lordship's pleasure were further known.

MR. [ROBERT] BATEMAN informs that these impositions for wines are not accounted to the King.

MR. [JOHN] GUY produces a letter from the Lord Treasurer for the levy of the new impositions on wines at Bristol.

[Afternoon, committee of grievances]

Sir Miles Fleetwood offers further proof for the justification of his charge upon the Treasurer by matter of record. That the 4 patentees that took the farm gave security for £16,000 rent, which was the full due of the whole farm, and as much as the parties that should have come in with the patentees as security should have undertaken for. That after the 5 partners first offered for security fell off, yet the patentees were accepted for the whole. That in a year and half after, the Treasurer never did once challenge any one part for himself or any others, neither could any interest remain in him, for the 5 parts were resigned to the 4 patentees.

[p. 208] Sir Edward Coke says he will now observe no method in his speech, since method is but an accessory to matter and he will not lose this for that, etc. He observes that in the patents of wines and grocery, the King had covenanted that no impositions should be laid on the sweet wines during the time of the lease of that farm; that for their better security and encouragement they had it verbo regio, and under the seal, and that yet my Lord Treasurer did impose upon them; that they petitioned my Lord for relief upon the King's covenant, and yet were driven to put a petition against the King (not for matter of favour or grace, but of justice and right) in the [Ex]chequer, and when they could get no answer from the Lord Treasurer, the judge of that court, they were enforced to petition the King. That the Treasurer knew the King's contract and word and yet would impose upon them, and he thinks that it had been a less fault to have advised the King to sell the manor of Greenwich.

[John] Williams, one of the parties that should have joined in security with the patentees, being examined, says he should have had a 32 part from the farmers assigned him, but not from the Treasurer, and that he resigned and left it to the farmers, and had nothing to do with the Treasurer.

Allen Carey affirms the same for his part.

[Thomas] Symonds says Sir John Wolstenholme did draw him in for the part he should have had and that he had nothing to do with the Treasurer.

Sir Philip Carey says the same.

Williams says further that at the account begun among the farmers at Christmas, 1622, for the great farm, which account was finished last July, the gain was divided among the farmers and the Lord Treasurer had no share.

So that Sir Edward Coke observes that the challenge which my Lord pretended for the 4 parts and that he took the £1,000 for that, is taken away by these men's testimony.

[p. 209] The Recorder observes that the two £500 were given as the charge imports. That my Lord had no part in the farm and that this crime was increased by an unheard of imposition after the wines were bought all, and some brought in. He thinks it not bribery but robbery. He doubts not the loss that this kind of dealing does necessarily draw on will be the King's, in that the commonwealth loses and is disabled by it. That the merchants are discouraged in trading and the King will lose in his customs by that. That the £500 was extorted, non dedit qui sic dedit, sed extorsit qui sic recepit. He moves that the opinion of the committee and the House may both be given upon the whole matter, and then to transfer the charges and the proofs to the Lords.

Sir Thomas Hoby moves for a select committee to collect the charge and the proofs into parts and that some special men be appointed to relate the parts of them to the Lords.

Sir R[obert] Phelips says that in the case of the Lord St. Albans the last Parliament, the party that had the chair at the committee was appointed to report the whole to the Lords, and moves it to be so now. (It was himself then.)

Sir Dudley Digges remembers them that in the case of Mompesson and for the projectors, it was distributed to several men in parts, and says further that if the charge of my Lord Treasurer had been no more than for taking the 2 £500's, he could have wished it never to have gone to the Lords; but it is an offence of a higher quality, and moves withal that those projectors that are the caterpillars of the kingdom and are ever buzzing these things into great men's heads, that care may be had of them that they may not so freely set on more such courses, etc.

Sir Robert Phelips allows that motion in fit time. The work now in hand is of 3 particulars: the bribes, the Wards and the impositions, which is the greatest but the most nice to be dealt in and to be warily proceeded with lest we rush upon that rock which will endanger our hopes. He doubts not the ill intendment of the Lord Treasurer and that it was suggested by [Abraham] Jacob to him or by him to Jacob. He thinks it very probable that this great Lord was [p. 210] the mover of the breach of the last Parliament and of that unwarrantable course of benevolence against the King's honour and the liberty of the commonwealth. That the impositions were no less and they assuredly moved from him, and that howsoever the king and people may be for a time separated, yet they will unite again to the ruin of such wicked instruments, and moves that this cause may therefore be transmitted to the Lords, etc.

Sir John Eliot moves that the House would remove this strange and prodigious comet which so fatally hangs over us, etc. Such comets, whose original is uncertain, whose motions are unknown, whose substance is corruption, their appearance glorious (being exhaled by the power of a more glorious planet), but whose end is the resolution of his corrupted substance into its former unsavoury baseness, etc. Where offences are great and in great men, the greater should be the punishment, for as much as he offends against many, goodness corrupt is the worst of evils, etc. He censures him to be unworthy his place and the King's favour, and hopes the Lords will see judgement rightly done, etc.

The committee orders the transmitting the charges and proofs to the Lords.

Sir Edward Coke speaks of the definition of the offence of bribery and says it is a reward corruptly taken by a judge. He tells us that [Sir William] Thorp reports a case of a judge that in compassion of some young men that stood indicted before him for robbery, that he gave them respite of trial until the next assizes, and for his favour in this presented him with £80, and that for this he was adjudged to take a reward corrupté et felonicé because he delayed justice though upon compassion. The Lord Treasurer is a judge of the king's revenue and he is sworn to serve the king and his people well and truly, to judge [p. 211] right unto all, to do the king's profit evenly and truly, to counsel the king justly. To delay the merchants half a year is not to use them well, to impoverish them and to decay the traffic and customs by it is not for the king's profit, to overburden the people by advising these new impositions is not to counsel well, to change the king's profits in the Court of Wards is not to do the king's profit evenly; and he is sworn to keep the king's seal and use it truly, which he did not when disposes both his hand and seal to his man's pleasure. The statute of 11mo H. 4 meets with these things terminis terminantibus, providing that no officer shall take any manner of gift or brokerage for doing of his office upon treble forfeiture and satisfaction, and to be punished at the king's will and disabled to bear that office. This Lord has munus unjuste receptum and transgressed that law, but indeed this law was not printed, and the reason of it is written in the margin of the Parliament Roll to be per mandatum principis et consilii.

VII. DIARY OF SIR THOMAS HOLLAND, BODL., MS RAWL. D1,100

[f. 5v]

12 April, Monday

Second read, committed, [Court of] Wards, tomorrow. An act to enable Vincent Lowe to sell lands in Derbyshire to pay his debts.

Committed, [Ex]chequer [Chamber], [to]morrow. An act for naturalizing Peter Verbeake of Norwich.

First read. An act for reversing a decree made at the Court of Whitehall, called the Court of Requests, between John Edwards the elder and John Edwards the younger.

[f. 6] First read. An act for the naturalizing the daughter of Sir Edward Cecil, the wife of Mr. [sic][Christopher] Wray, and of Sir John Ogle's wife [and] children, Charles Morgan['s daughter], Sir William St. Leger's children.

Second read, committed, Thursday, [Court of] Wards. An act to prevent simony and abuses of elections in colleges and halls.

The bill of monopolies is to be conferred of with the Lords tomorrow in the afternoon, 2 [o']clock.

[MR.] SOLICITOR reports the bill of exchange between the Prince and Sir Lewis Watson. Passed both Houses.

34 [sic] bills passed.

Order. An order that the warden of the Fleet shall attend the House tomorrow with [Matthias] Fowle that he may be ex[amined] how he came into the Fleet, where he pretends he is a prisoner.

First read. An act for the ordering the Clerk of the Market and reformation of due weights and measures.

[MR. CHRISTOPHER] BROOKE reports an act for the good making of knives, shears and other edge tools in Hallamshire.

Put to engrossing.

Second read, committed, Wednesday, [Court of] Wards, all [to have] voices. An act for taking of bail upon reversing of outlawries and to avoid many abuses committed by shrieves and attorneys.

[f. 6v] First read. An act for true making of serges and perpetuanas.

Second read, third read, passed both Houses. An act for the naturalizing Sir Stephen Lesieur, kt.

[Henry] Lovell's submission to the House. The House, upon due grounds concerning elections, committed him to the Tower and upon his petition acknowledged his fault, and his censure to be just, upon which he was discharged.

[Committee of the Whole House for the bill of continuance and repeal of statutes]

For rye, peas and beans, barley and malt. The price of rye is to be xxs. q[uarte]r; the price of peas and beans xvis. q[uarte]r; the price of barley and malt xvis.

[SIR EDWIN] SANDYS'S report concerning new impositions. The select committee met this morning, merchants and customers, projects new impost and others for wines. The Lord Treasurer moved that new custom to the Council 14 January 19 Jac., a privy seal for levying £3 a tun for one year for the Palatinate. Of this the merchants complained beyond all use a burden, without their privity, when the ships were gone. [f. 7] £8,000 was to be levied; the wares were taken from them while they had paid the one half and given security for it; upon complaint to the Lord Treasurer, he told them that they should rot in prison unless he should pay it, and commit them to a pursuivant. The one half was paid, the other was divided into 3 parts in 3 years. That year by the Rochellers, and this, they lost a great part. 13 August 20 Jac. another privy seal drew down the £3 to £1, and that was without limitation. A greater error an information to his Majesty that the King took this at the humble desire of the merchants. This the merchants deny, but the merchants say they were suitors that his Majesty for the second moiety to take it at £1 the tun a year until it was paid, but they say pursuivants were at [f. 7v] their backs daily. They constantly affirm, so 7,000 tuns they have paid £30,000, and the officer says £42,000 [sic] within 2 year[s] in a port of London. They say they have paid centum for centum. Cognac, sum paid on board, pay £5 2[s.] and £4 to the King. The freight of every tun £1 [sic]; the leakage of every tun, 40s. They protested that the Israelites were not in greater bondage. Not one man in many years have raised any estate, many undone. They are enforced to yield to any conditions because their bonds are forfeited for the imposition.

For grocery wares in the port of London and outports, a warrant from Mr. [Abraham] Jacob [f. 8] was shown. For the sugar, muscovadoes. For the farm of the sugar, [Thomas] Havers paid to Queen Anne, who paid £5,500 rent. Herriot since paid 10,000 marks [sic]. [Nicholas] Herman and [Thomas] Catchmay these 2 last years paid but £2,000. They had let out this to the great farmers, who paid £6,000 per annum. Another thing, by virtue of a privy seal, exportation of commodities within a year was to pay nothing, yet were they enforced to pay custom. For the printing of the new book a privy seal was sent, 1623, to the Lord Treasurer. A warrant issued out from the Lord Treasurer to Mr. [Thomas] Lever. The 12th December, it was suppressed by the Lord Treasurer but for a few days, but after until his Lordship's pleasure was known. Thus much for the book.

The answer was from the Lord Treasurer that the kingdom should buy the wine, and the vintners were sent for [f. 8v] that the prices [sic] of wine was presently raised.

[MR. ROBERT] BATEMAN. That these impositions upon the wines, there are none yet accounted for to the King.

[MR. JOHN] GUY. There has been a letter from Mr. Jacob to Bristol to levy the compositions for grocery. Afterward he attended the Lord Treasurer. Young Jacob delivered a letter differing from the first.

[Afternoon]

At the committee [for grievances] appointed this day to hear my Lord Treasurer's answer

Answer. To the charge of £500 from Jacob, [Henry] Garway and [Bernard] Hide at an entire sum from the petty farmers, he denies the same, he never hearing of it until Christmas last. For the other, he likewise denies the other £500 but he confesses the receipt of a £1,000 for his 4 parts, which was 4/32 parts. [f. 9] He was content to sell it to Jacob and other patentees, and therefore neither by signing a warrant for the drawing of a book he has done anything to the prejudice of the King.

[Sir Miles] Fleetwood. 3 particulars against my Lord matter of record. 4 patentees contracted for £48,000 per annum. Those who were to come with them for security of the friends of the patentees, when some of those did fall away, the 4 patentees did intend to take them; nevertheless the 5 partners that fell off were never entertained by my Lord, nor feoffees, but came in by the patentees. The 4 patentees reserved the 4 parts which they did reserve until April last, and did pass the account accordingly.

[f. 9v] [Sir Edward] Coke. 3 years since, there was 3 leases of the wines and currants. In that, a covenant with the farmer that no imposition should be set during the lease in respect they were to disburse £50,000, and covenant that in verbo regis he would not set any imposition during the lease which they had. When they addressed themselves to the Lord Treasurer and told him of the King's covenant, but they could not have relief from my Lord; then they put in a bill against the King signifying the King's covenant and word, but they could not get an answer because my Lord was chief judge. Then they preferred a petition to the King.

[f. 10] The contractors for the wines and currants, Hide and Garway in the name of the rest, which did express his Majesty's covenant that they should not be taxed with any impost upon those wines, both French and sweet wines, but in respect of the double imposition they could not come within £1,500 of so much as should pay their rent. Therefore they humbly desired his Majesty's hearing the cause himself or to refer it to the body of the Council.

John Williams examined. There was a 32 part promised to him; neither was that appointed by the Lord Treasurer nor to his use, neither had he ever anything to do with the Lord Treasurer.

[f. 10v] Allen Carey. There was a half part agreed with the farmers for by [sic] him, for which he never had anything to do with the Lord Treasurer, but he did relinquish it again to the patentees.

Thomas Symonds. There was a part promised to him by Sir John Wolstenholme. He never heard my Lord Treasurer named in it but yielded it up to the farmers again.

[Sir] Philip Carey says as much in effect.

Williams. At the year's end, there was an account entered and made up in [blank]. The gain was divided and the share to every one of the farmers, and my Lord had no part in any.

[f. 11] [Abraham] Dawes. The account was made up for 1622 as well for the 4 parts as the rest and my Lord had no part in any of them.

[Mr.] Recorder. We have done a great deal of honour to the House in giving this day to the Lord Treasurer, but his Lordship might as well have made the answer the last week. We must now come to an end. There is just cause to send this up for a complaint, which my Lord desires he may be purged in by oath. For the first charge of £500 given by the petty farmers to procure a warrant for expedition of the £9,500 and delivered by Hide and put into the petty farms' account, but since the Parliament it was changed to the account of the great farms [f. 11v] only upon the agreement between the Lord Treasurer and Jacob. This grew upon an imposition so unduly set as he never heard of the like to come within these walls: to set £3 upon a tun of wine when the wines were coming home, it is a robbery. If the farmer did receive so great a loss because there failed of so great a quantity coming in that they were to have a relief from the loss, what did the kingdom suffer by the overburdening of trade? For the other, my Lord had no pretence of right to any of the parts, therefore he leaves that charge upon him. If he did refuse to take the security of the 4 patentees, to accept it for £500 given to him was a weakening to the King's assurance.

[f. 12] [Sir Thomas] Hoby moves that first a question may be made whether it shall go up to the Lords, then a select committee which should deliver it in parts.

[Sir Dudley] Digges. He wishes that the hurt to the commonwealth may be delivered up rather than my Lord's private cause, for were it not that there are more public hurt than these 2 £500, he would never wish the sending of it up, but being/

[Sir Robert] Phelips. Our work 3 parts: the 2 £500; the Court of Wards; lastly, the imposts of sugar and other things. For the £500, whether his Lordship look to the things preceding or the subsequent, it was corrupt. He thinks that my Lord persuaded the King to the last dissolution; likewise, he was the chief for the [f. 12v] benevolence. And lastly, his act for the prejudice of the King's honour by the advice of an ill counsellor to cause the King to break his word. But they have all their reward to advise so good a king. These are subtle projects. He holds it fit they be offered up to the Lords with a stamp of the opinion of this House of the illness of the act.

[Sir John] Eliot. The greatness of the person gives him the greater will to speak. He holds him unworthy the favour of his country, unworthy the countenance of his prince and ripe to be commended up to the Lords.

Question. Upon question, that as many as think that we have good grounds to judge this £500 out of the petty farms corrupt [f. 13] to say "I", which was affirmed without anyone answering "No".

Question. The second £500 was also judged corrupt, by question.

Question. The question also for the charges against my Lord in the Court of Wards to be sent also up to the Lords is also passed.

[Sir Edward] Coke. For the nature of the offence. [Sir William] Thorp, for a bribe (£80), did delay justice, whereby a prisoner obtained his pardon. My Lord Treasurer is sworn truly to serve the king and his people, when he has a warrant and delay it half a year; that he shall do right to poor and rich, how did he it when he did deny a thing of right?; he to advise the king justly; without alteration to them [f. 13v] he shall truly use and keep the king's seal, and he delivered his hand and seal to his secretary. Numero 50 [sic], 11 H. 4, no chancellor, treasurer, warden of the privy seal, councillor, shall take in any manner of gift or brokerage for doing of his office in pain of treble what he takes and to pay the same, to be punished at the will of the king and to be discharged of his office, and not to bear any office. He wishes a committee may be appointed for distributing the parts at a conference then desired with the Lords, and this transmitted over.

VIII. DIARY OF JOHN PYM, NORTHAMPTONSHIRE RECORD OFFICE, FH/N/C/0050

[f. 59v]

April 12, 1624

An act to enable [blank] to sell divers lands for the payment of his debts.

An act for naturalization of Peter Verbeake.

It was agreed by SIR DUDLEY DIGGES that Sir Anthony Aucher and Sir Thomas Hardres might be protected by the House whilst they were enforced to attend the committee concerning [blank] preferred by their creditors for sale of their lands. But it was not granted.

An act for making void a decree in the Court of Requests in a suit between [blank] Sherborne.

An act for naturalizing of the daughter of Sir Edward Cecil and of the wife, daughter and 7 children of Sir Charles Morgan [sic].

An act for preventing of simony and the sale of scholarships and fellowships.

It was moved that it might extend to colourable sale of advowsons and to pensions given to poor scholars as well as to fellowships.

The bill was committed.

MR. SOLICITOR reported the bill for confirmation of the exchange [of land] between the Prince and Sir Lewis Watson [f. 60] without any alterations.

And thereupon that bill was read the third time and passed.

It was informed that [Matthias] Fowle, who was committed to the Serjeant, kept himself out of his custody, pretending that he was a prisoner in the Fleet, whereupon an order was made that the warden of the Fleet should attend tomorrow morning.

An act for better ordering of the Clerk of the Market.

An act for the good order and government of the knife-makers of [blank] in Yorkshire.

The bill was now reported by MR. [CHRISTOPHER] BROOKE and ordered to be engrossed.

An act for taking bail upon reversals of outlawries and the preventing divers abuses of sheriffs and bailiffs.

The provisions in this bill were these:

  • 1. No reversal to be had of outlawries after judgement without security to pay the debt, nor before judgement, but upon bail to answer the action.
  • 2. The like order to be taken upon writs of error.
  • 3. The officers to take no other fees for this security, bail and other matters incident thereunto than such as are particularly expressed in the act.
  • 4. Authority given to the sheriff to take that security.

An act for true making of serges and perpetuanas.

An act for naturalizing of Sir Stephen Lesieur, read twice together and passed for a law.

Mr. [Henry] Lovell presented a petition and made his submission at the bar and thereupon was discharged.

SIR EDWIN SANDYS made a report of the charge upon my Lord Treasurer concerning the new impositions, whereat I was absent.

Eodem die, at a committee for grievances

Divers bonds of the Staplers were brought in by Sir R[ichard] Lydall according to a former order.

Mr. [Richard] Willis, secretary to my Lord Treasurer, presented a paper from my Lord and was commanded to set his hand to a subscription that it was delivered by his Lordship's appointment. It contained:

  • 1. In the title thus, "The answer of the Lord Treasurer to the two several charges presented against him to the honourable House of Commons".
  • 2. He denied the receiving of any two distinct sums as he [f. 60v] was charged with, either of the petty farmers or of the great farmers.
  • [3.] He confessed the receipt of £1,000 in one entire sum, which he justified being for a composition made with Mr. [Abraham] Jacob and his partners for 4/32 parts of the customs which did belong to himself.
  • [4.] In the conclusion, he protested upon the faith of a Christian all this to be true, which he besought the honourable House to receive, and that having been so lately a member thereof, he would not for anything in the world abuse them with a falsehood.

Two things were now proved by witnesses which inclined the committee not to give credit to this answer. By Mr. [John] Williams, Allen Carey, Sir Philip Carey and Thomas [blank], who were the men nominated for those 4/32 parts, that they were to have their parts respectively to their own use, not in trust, for my Lord Treasurer did relinquish them freely without assigning their interest to him. By Mr. Williams, cashkeeper to the farmers, and Mr. [Abraham] Dawes, auditor, that upon the dividend of the account for the year ended at Michaelmas [sic] 1622, my Lord Treasurer had no part.

Another proof was produced, that the petty farmers had lost by reason of the impositions £15,000, for recompense whereof the £95,000 [sic] was allowed.

The observations made upon his offences were these:

  • 1. The root of the first crime was an imposition of a strange nature set upon the merchants after the[y] had contracted for their wine in France, and contrary to a covenant of the King's in his lease to the petty farmers in verbo regis and to a promise made to the Commons in 70 that he would lay no new impositions without consent of Parliament.
  • 2. In the first bribe the King's justice was sold, in the second his security.

Both the offences were, upon the question, adjudged fit to be transferred to the Lords.

Sir Edward Coke. There is no certain word in the law for a bribe. [Sir William] Thorp, 24 E. 3, justice of assize in Lincoln, had taken £80 of some young gentlemen indicted for a robbery to give them day until the next assizes. He was arraigned for this, which the record says was done corrupté et felonicé, and had judgement to be hanged, and this was without Parliament, and the reason of the judgement was given, because he had broken the King's oath which was committed to the judges.

My Lord Treasurer is a judge as Lord Treasurer, a judge of the king's revenue and of the distribution thereof. His patent and his oath show his duty. The points of his oath are these:

  • 1. To serve faithfully the king and his people.
  • 2. To do right to all rich and poor.
  • 3. To purchase the king's profit in all things with reason.
  • 4. Justly, etc., to counsel the king.
  • 5. Truly to use and keep the king's secrets, against all which articles he has offended.

[f. 61] 11 H. 4, in the Parliament Roll, number 28, is a statute which was never printed, to this effect: no chancellor, treasurer, warden of the privy seal, councillor sworn nor other officer, etc., shall take any manner of gift or recompense of any man for doing his office upon pain to forfeit treble and to satisfy all parties and to be further punished at the will of the king and discharged from his office forever. And note this has not been printed per mandatum principis et conciliatrum.

In the House

The Speaker was called to the chair, and SIR EDWARD COKE made a report of that was concluded of the committee. Concerning the impositions were these opinions:

  • 1. Not to transfer this matter of the impositions at all, which was propounded by SIR JOHN SAVILE, SIR THOMAS JERMYN and the CHANCELLOR OF THE DUCHY, lest the King might mislike the rest for the company of this and (as it was expressed by the CHANCELLOR) give my Lord Treasurer occasion to take hold of the horns of the altar.
  • 2. If we do transfer them, to take the same course which we have done in the rest, first to hear him answer for himself.
  • 3. To transfer it but in plain terms maintaining our right against impositions. The liberty of the subject is of more value than the punishment of any man; and if we disguise our claim, it may be interpreted as a desertion. This was propounded by SIR T[HOMAS] WENTWORTH.
  • 4. To transfer it without any relation to the question of right as an offence against the King's honour in the breach of his covenant, against his profit by the abatement of trade to the diminution of his other customs, to the prejudice of his subjects. For as the nobles in France were taxed in their tenants, so the kingdom bears these payments and not the merchants. The unfitness of the time, the ships being in the harbour. The unwarrantableness of the charge upon the grocery. This opinion was maintained by SIR ROBERT PHELIPS, SIR EDWIN SANDYS, MR. RECORDER and others.

MR. [WILLIAM] NOYE would have added that it was a device for his singular profit to compass a bribe of £500, but that was conceived to be too much strained.

At last it was ordered that a complaint against my Lord Treasurer should be preferred to the Lords consisting of 4 heads:

  • 1. The bribe from the petty farmers.
  • 2. The bribe from the great farmers.
  • 3. The misdemeanours touching the Court of Wards, distinguished into 3 points:
  •      1. Alteration of instruction to the prejudice of the King and the subject.
  •      2. The taking of double fees.
  •      3. The unlawful use of a stamp.
  • 4. The new impositions upon wine, sugar and grocery.

IX. DIARY OF SIR WALTER EARLE, BL, ADD. MS 18,597

[f. 131v]

Monday, 12th of April

Bill to prevent simony and abuse of elections in colleges and halls. Second read, committed, Thursday, Court of Wards.

A message sent to the Lords to put off the conference on the bill of monopolies. The Lords appoint tomorrow, two of the clock in the afternoon.

Bill for incorporating the cutlers of Hallamshire in Yorkshire. Put to engrossing.

Bill concerning taking of bail for reversing of outlawries. Second read and committed.

[f. 132] Bill for true making of serges and perpetuanas.

Bill for naturalizing of Sir Stephen Lesieur, coming from the Lords, twice read and passed.

Henry Lovell came from the Tower to make his submission and acknowledgment of his offence, and was discharged.

The Speaker went from the chair. The great committee for the bill of continuance of statutes.

The Speaker again in the chair.

SIR EDWIN SANDYS'S report from the committee concerning the impositions on wines. A privy seal January 14, 19 Jac. for £3 a tun upon wine. Another privy seal dated 13th of August, 23 Jac. [sic]; this abated, 20s. per tun. A misinformation appears in the privy seal that it was at the humble and voluntary consent of the farmers, which they deny. They only agreed to pay 20s. until etc., could not have up their bonds, were followed with pursuivants. If this continue they are undone. [Sir Richard] Clowberry and his brother paid [£]80,000 [sic] to the King in two year[s], £30,000 in the whole. Of this, the officers acknowledge £44,000 received. They pay communibus annis centum per centum. Cognac wine cost £5 2s. in France. Imposition £3 and 20s. new. [f. 132v] The freight 24s., the leakage 40s., this year more. Some complain they are undone for their particular. They were able to drive twice as much trade were it not for this.

Touching the grocery, a privy seal 11th of October 1622 [sic], for levying etc., still levied in the port of Weymouth. Touching sugars, muscovadoes, the rate of £50 instead of 50s. seems to be an error. Queen Anne had for this £5,500 rent, increased to 10,000 marks, now let to Mr. [Nicholas] Herman and Mr. [Thomas] Catchmay, two of the Lord Treasurer's men, for £2,000 per annum. Alleged by some that this was by them let out to the farmers of the great custom, who pay them £6,000. Another, whereas commodities imported, if exported, are to have allowance, this of sugars has had none.

Concerning the printing the Book of Rates, a privy seal dat[ed] 22nd of October 1623. The Lord Treasurer's warrant to one Mr. [Thomas] Lever of the Custom House to put it in execution with a schedule. The warrant for printing the book, 5 December [1623]; within a week, 12 December, a warrant for suppressing it by [Abraham] Jacob and Catchmay, the Lord Treasurer's servants.

MR. [JOHN] GLANVILLE'S addition to the report. When the merchants complained they should never be able, etc., [f. 133] the Lord Treasurer said, "You shall do it, and the kingdom shall be made to do it", etc. And thereupon the vintners were compelled.

MR. [ROBERT] BATEMAN. No account is yet made at all for the K [sic] wines to the King, whatever be become of it.

MR. [JOHN] GUY informed concerning the grocery, that the city of Bristol complaining thereof and showing a decree in the Exchequer, they obtained a direction to the officers of the custom there to be freed, yet underhand direction was given to them to levy it, and they did it, exacting bonds, etc.

Monday afternoon, the committee of grievances

The Lord Treasurer's business. No counsel came for him but a paper sent and delivered in by his secretary, containing an answer to that he was charged withal. The paper was not admitted until the secretary had subscribed his name and that he did write it by the Lord Treasurer's appointment, who did dictate the same unto him to deliver it to the committees as his answer.

The answer. To the charge of £500 to be given in the name of the petty farmers by the men named, etc., or for any such or any other cause, he denies it and hopes [f. 133v] they will clear him upon their oaths. To the other £500, he denies any such sum was given him for any such thing, but that having a right to 4 parts of the 32 in the great farm, there was given him a £1,000 for his relinquishing thereof, and not for any other cause. In the conclusion, a protestation of the truth of, etc.

Sir Miles Fleetwood. For further proof, first, matter of record. 4 patentees, they contracted with the King for £160,000 per annum. They entered into covenant. Those that joined were to procure partners. The security tendered, the security accepted, [29] April 1622. The bonds sealed all to 5 parts. The patentees resolved to take such parts as fell off and to bear it among them. Proofs to be produced that these 5 were never nominated by the Lord Treasurer but by the patentees. These 2 bribes being given, the patentees took the 5 parts among them. Upon account in April last, a distribution of these 5 parts into the hands of the 4 patentees.

Sir Edward Coke. To observe the method. About 3 years since, the lease of the petty farm of wines was made. It appears by the record there was a covenant on the King's part to set no imposition on those commodities. [f. 134] They desired access to the King's person and had his royal word because they were to disburse £50,000 in hand. The Lord Treasurer, notwithstanding this, laid this imposition. They complained, said they were undone. A petition of right. They put in a petition of right into the Exchequer in Michaelmas term 1622. This did nothing. Then they had a motion in court, then 22 December they petitioned the King.

The petition shows how they took the lease at [£]44,050 [sic], how the King had covenanted and given his royal word. That by the double impost, they had great loss. Attended the Lord Treasurer 10 months, exhibited a bill of complaint, humbly desired the King to hear it himself.

John Williams produced, affirmed that the farmers at the first promised him 1/32 part of the farm, without having it by any grant from the Lord Treasurer or surrendering it to the Lord Treasurer.

Allen Carey testified the like, and that he never had anything to do with the Lord Treasurer, either in taking or leaving his part.

Thomas Symonds, the like.

Sir Philip Cary, the like.

[f. 134v] John Williams called again concerning the account made in July last of the petty [sic] farm. He says he made it then to Mr. [Maurice] Abbot and [Abraham] Dawes. The gain was divided. But the Lord Treasurer had no part of it.

Dawes says it was so, the account was made to him.

Resolved, upon the question, by the committee that the two charges of corrupt taking of the 2 £500, that the charge concerning the Court of Wards, were matters fit to be presented to the Lords.

Sir Edward Coke. In E. 3['s] time, one [Sir William] Thorp, Lord Chief Justice, took of 3 young gentlemen that had done robbery £80 to give them further day for their trial; he was judged to be hanged for doing it corrupté et felonicé. The Lord Treasurer is sworn to serve the king and his people, to do right to all both poor and rich, to purchase the king's profit as reasonably, equally and justly, etc., to use the king's seal truly. In 11 H. 4 a case, Rot. Parl., num. 28. No chancellor, treasurer, warden of the privy seal, nor etc. shall take in any manner any manner [sic] of gift of brokerage for doing of his office on pain to forfeit treble the value, [f. 135] to be punished by the king and to forfeit his office, etc. This was not printed per mandatum principis et consilii as is set down in the margin.

The Speaker went to the chair.

The business reported.

SIR ROBERT PHELIPS. The imposition on wines, he being the projector, etc., fit to recommend that also to the Lords, it being done contrary to the covenant and to the King's word.

MR. [WILLIAM] NOYE. Note, this imposition laid after the arrival, which is in effect as much as laying it on a native commodity.

SIR EDWIN SANDYS. This not fit to be passed by. The burden insupportable. For the matter of sugar, £4,000 gained to the Lord Treasurer out of it with so much loss to the King.

Resolved, upon the question, to have all 4 points to be presented to the Lords, and referred to a committee to consider how to present them:

  • 1. Bribery concerning the petty farms.
  • 2. Extortion in the Court of Wards.
  • 3. Wrong to the King and subject.
  • 4. The deceiving the King of £4,000 a year in the sugars.

X. JOURNAL OF SIR SIMONDS D'EWES, BL, HARL. MS 159

[f. 103]

April 12, Monday

An act for the naturalizing of one of the daughters of Sir Edward Cecil, the wife and son [sic] of Sir Charles Morgan, the son of Sir John Prowde, the wife, 3 sons and 7 daughters of Sir John Ogle.

An act to prevent simony and abuses in elections in colleges and halls.

An act for confirmation of exchange of lands between [f. 103v] the Prince his Highness and Sir Lewis Watson, knight. Some lands in Rockingham of £5 value are passed by the Prince to Sir Edward Watson for lands of his of double value in Garthorpe, Leicestershire, made over to the Prince from Sir Lewis Watson in their stead. Passed.

An order for the warden of the Fleet to bring in [Matthias] Fowle next morning.

An act to prevent abuses of sheriffs and other officers about outlawries.

An act for the true making of serges and perpetuanas.

An act for the naturalizing of Sir Stephen Lesieur. Passed.

[Henry] Lovell, upon petition, was admitted to do his submission, and so discharged. Vide April 30.

The bill of continuance of statutes.

In the afternoon, [committee of grievances]

The Lord Treasurer sends his answer in writing by [Richard] Willis, his secretary, who signed it there for his Lord's answer, wherein he denied peremptorily the 2 £500s, but says in lieu of 4/32 parts of the great customs he received £1,000 of [Abraham] Jacob to whom he sold them. This he protests upon the faith of a Christian and rests confident it will so appear upon oath he had not a thought of any such thing nor never heard of it until Christmas last. He desired the House to believe and to take some course that all this may be speedily cleared above.

Here Sir Miles Fleetwood offers new proof, first, by matters of record; second, by further witness. The patentees contracted with the King and not the Lord Treasurer. He was none of them. They tendered the security [29] April 1622, and it was accepted. Some of them afterward fell away and the rest resumed those parts to themselves, and upon their account the Lord Treasurer neither received nor demanded profit, but the patentees settled all upon their own accounts. Ergo, the Lord Treasurer had none.

John Williams, Allen Carey, Thomas Symonds, Sir Philip Carey, examined, denied to have taken their parts for the Lord Treasurer's use or to have left them to him or to have had anything to do with him in the business.

John Williams and [Abraham] Dawes examined about the making up of the accounts for the great farms, confess that the Lord Treasurer had no share in the division. Ergo, no right sure to the shares.

Sir Edward Coke. In the lease for wines taken 3 years since, the King covenants to set no further imposition upon them, and that they required verbo regio and had it granted. Yet the Lord Treasurer, contrary to the King's contract and royal word, set a further imposition, [f. 104] whereupon they petitioned and preferred a bill in the Exchequer, and motion was made that the Attorney [General] might answer it. Then came a petition, not of grace but of right, exhibited at Whitehall by Mr. [Bernard] Hide and Henry Garway, Decembris 220, 1622, and the very petition was read in the House to the same purpose.

The Recorder of London. The Lord Treasurer had no such great need of further time to make such an answer, for he said nothing but what Jacob had said before him. The House had done itself honour in granting his request, and now since he desired to have it declared by oath, he moved to have it so. The petty farmers were very fortunate if for a £1,000 given by the great farmers, they speedily enjoyed that which for 10 months formerly they had sought and could not obtain. He, ergo, was satisfied in that charge and proof. And for the Book of Rates, he thinks the imposition foul because the wines were in the port when it was laid. He might as well have laid it upon those in the cellar. And sure the merchants, if they could have foreseen that, would have brought in little that year; so it was great loss to them, but more to the subject. So in conclusion, non dedit qui sic dedit, sed extorsit qui sic accepit, for he sold the King's grace and goodness. It was no better than plain robbery.

Sir Dudley Digges. These evils are raised from the city to serve the King's turn. They are caterpillars or worse.

Sir Robert Phelips. We have been pressed with him long because of the unfortunate dissolution of the last Parliament, of the imposition by way of benevolence; but the King and his people will meet at the end, and they smart for it that have divided them.

Sir John Eliot compares him to a meteor or comet and ran much upon that allegory. In fine, concluded him not worthy of his country, King and place.

Sir Edward Coke put a case: Sir Robert [sic] Thorp, one of the King's justices sitting at Lincoln, there were divers young gentleman brought before him for a robbery done by them. Upon a gift of £80 made among them, he deferred their trial until the next assizes. He himself was hanged [sic], ob munus corruptionis et felonicé acceptum. And that is all the word the law has for a bribe, for the great canon of the law is nulli de negabimus ius, nulli vendemus, nulli differemus. He urged also the oath Henrici 4ti, 110, not printed but 'tis in the Parliament Roll, number 28: no lord chancellor nor treasurer shall take any money or gift or brokerage for doing his office upon pain of loss of the triple, to be punished [f. 104v] at the will of the king and discharged of his place.

So it was agreed to send him up to the Lords.

Then grew the dispute whether that of the imposition in the Book of Rates should be added to his charge or no. Some thought no because he had not answered yet to that as he had done to the rest; because it touched upon the King's prerogative; because it would give him occasion to lay hold upon the horns of the altar; because it was laid for the relieving of the King's children; because it was too great a matter to come in thus upon the by and deserved to be sent in alone as a main complaint. But it was overruled to send that surcharge of impositions up to the Lords in as vile company as might be to show them what the subject thought of it.

Ordered upon 4 several questions:

  • 1. To send up the Lord Treasurer to the Lords for £500 received upon the petty farms.
  • 2. For £500 upon the great customs.
  • 3. For disorderly proceedings in the Court of Wards and for the stamp.
  • 4. For impositions laid by the Book of Rates, but still setting by all dispute with the King about the right of impositions.

A committee named to sum up and state the charge that so it might speedily be presented to the Lords.