Jovis, 11 die Aprilis, 1678.
Illness of Mr. Speaker.
THE House being, on the Seven-and-twentieth of
March last, adjourned to this Day; and being
met; Mr. Hen. Seymour, one of his Majesty's Bedchamber, and Uncle to Mr. Seymour, the present Speaker, did
acquaint the House, That he had received Information
by a Letter by Appointment from Mr. Speaker, who at
present is at his House in the Country in the Interval of
the Sitting of the House; That he was there suddenly
seized with a Sickness and Distemper, so violently, that
he was confined to his Bed, and not able to write himself;
but, so soon as it should please God to restore him, he
would return to their Service.
Sir R. Sawyer chosen Speaker.
And Mr. Secretary Coventry acquainting the House,
That his Majesty had received Advertisement, that Mr.
Speaker does labour under so great an Indisposition of
Health, that he cannot possibly, for a long time, attend
the Service of the House; and to the end the publick
Affairs may receive no Delay; his Majesty did give Leave
to the House to chuse a new Speaker; and to present
him to his Majesty on Monday next:
And the House being satisfied, That, by reason of th
Speaker's great Indisposition, Uncertainty of Return; and
in order to publick Affairs, it was very necessary a new
Speaker should be chosen: Thereupon Mr. Secretary
Coventry did propose, and recommend, Sir Robert Sawyer
as a Person fit, for his Ability and Learning, to be Speaker.
And Sir Robert Sawyer standing up, and making a
Speech to excuse and disable himself; and some other
Person being in Nomination;
And a Debate arising; and a Question demanded to be
put, Whether Sir Robert Sawyer should be chosen Speaker
or not; and who should put that Question; a Precedent was then produced out of the Journal of 1° Jacobi,
where the Clerk of the House, in like Case with this,
did, by Direction of the House, make and put the
And the present Clerk being now directed and demanded
so to do; and the Mace not being in the House; he did
humbly leave it to their Consideration, whether it could be
so regularly done, till the Mace were brought into the
House: And, upon some Debate had, it was thought fit,
and the Mace was, by their Command, brought in by the
Serjeant, and laid under the Table: And the House then
again directed the Clerk to make, and put the Question:
Which he did, pursuant to the former Precedents; viz.
All that will have Sir Robert Sawyer Speaker, say Yea:
Which being carried in the Affirmative by much the
greater Number of Voices, without any Division of the
House, Sir Robert Sawyer was thereupon conducted to
the Chair by Mr. Secretary Coventry and Mr. Secretary
Williamson: And being there placed, and the Mace then
put upon the Table; after some Pause, he stood up, and
made a gratulatory Speech to the House for their Favour
and respect to him; desiring their Leave to intercede
with his Majesty to excuse him from undertaking so great
and difficult an Employment; which, by reason of his
Indisposition of Body, and want of Experience, he conceived himself not able to perform: But, if his Excuse
should not be admitted, he would serve them with all
Integrity, to the utmost of his Capacity and Ability:
And desired the Help and Assistance of the Members,
who had been long versed and experienced in the Proceedings of the House.
And the House, having, upon the Question, ordered
the Clerk to enter the Manner of chusing the Speaker;
without proceeding to any other Business
Adjourned till Monday Morning next, Eight of