Jovis, 19 die Decembris, 1678.
COMPLAINT being made of a Breach of Privilege, committed upon Sir Edm. Windham, a
Member of this House, by one George Heath; by attaching his Goods in the Possession and Keeping of
Thomas Bruinell his Coachman;
Resolved, That it be referred to the Consideration of
the Committee of Privileges, to examine the Matter of
the said Complaint; and to report the same, with their
Opinions therein, to the House.
Leave of Absence.
Ordered, That the Lord Longford, and Sir Francis
Drake, have Leave to go into the Country.
Children of Popish Recusants.
An ingrossed Bill, sent from the Lords, intituled, An
Act for the more effectual preventing the Sending or
Going of the Children of Popish Recusants, into Parts
beyond the Seas out of the King's Obedience, was read
the First time.
Resolved, That the Bill be read a Second time.
House informed of a Riot.
The House being informed of a Riot committed by
certain Soldiers; and that there was one Mr. Plucknet
without, that could give the House an Account thereof;
And Mr. Plucknet being called in; and having given
the House an Account thereof;
Resolved, That a Committee be appointed to examine
the Matter of the said Riot, and report the same, with
their Opinions therein to the House.
And it is referred to Sir John Moreton, Colonel Titus,
Mr. Sachaverell, Sir Eliab Harvy, Sir Robert Markham,
Sir Tho. Clerges, Mr. Crouch, Mr. Westfaling, Sir John
Barnaby, Sir Gilbert Gerrard, Mr. Progers, Sir Wm.
Hickman, Sir Rich. Temple, Sir Tho. Lee, Sir John Knight,
Sir Anth. Irby, Sir Trevor Williams, Mr. Powle, Sir
Edw. Deering, Sir John Trevor, Sir George Hungerford,
Sir Thomas Meeres, Sir Edm. Windham, Mr. Vaughan,
Colonel Birch, Serjeant Gregory, Mr. Hamden, Sir Tho.
Littleton, Sir Hen. Capell, Sir Fr. Drake: And they are
to meet at Three of the Clock in the Afternoon, in the
Speaker's Chamber: And are impowered to send for
Persons, Papers, and Records.
Ordered, That Mr. Plucknett be called in: And that
Mr. Speaker do acquaint him, That he has done well in
doing his Duty, and giving this Account to the House.
Which was accordingly done.
Seizure of Mr. Montagu's Papers.
Mr. Chancellor of the Exchequer acquaints the House,
That he was commanded by his Majesty to inform the
House, That his Majesty having received Information,
That his late Ambassador in France, Mr. Montagu, a
Member of this House, had held several private Conferences with the Pope's Nuncio there, without any
Directions or Instructions from his Majesty, his Majesty,
to the end that he might know the Truth of that Matter,
had given Order for the Seizing of Mr. Montagu's Papers.
Resolved, That the House having this Day received a
Message from his Majesty, acquainting this House, That
upon an Information against Mr. Montagu, a Member of
this House, his Majesty had given Order for the Seizing
the Papers of Mr. Montagu, in order to a further Discovery; this House cannot make any Judgment, either
in relation to their Member, or the Privilege of the House,
which may be in a great measure invaded, unless his
Majesty will be graciously pleased to let this House know,
whether the Information against Mr. Montagu was given
upon Oath; and of what Nature the Offence is, that is
thus complained of.
Ordered, That the Lord Cavendish, Sir John Ernle,
Sir Hen. Capell, Sir Tho. Lee, Sir Tho. Meres, Mr.
Powle, Sir John Pelham, Colonel Titus, and Mr. Harbord,
or any Three of them, do immediately attend his
Majesty with this Vote.
The Lord Cavendish reports, That they had been to
attend his Majesty with the Vote of this House, relating
to the Information against Mr. Montagu: And that his
Majesty sent them Word out of the House of Lords, That
he was at that time very busy; and that his Majesty had
rather they would attend him at Whitehall, when the
House was up.
Papers communicated by Mr. Montagu.
Mr. Montagu acquainting the House, That he had
in his Custody several Papers, which he conceived might
tend very much to the Safety of his Majesty's Person, and
the Preservation of the Kingdom;
Ordered, That the Lord Russell, Mr. Harbord, Sir
Scroop How, and Sir Hen. Capell, do take Mr. Montagu's
Directions; and repair immediately to the Place where
the said Writings are lodged; and bring the same to the
Mr. Harbord acquaints the House, That, in pursuance
of the Order of this House, and according to Mr. Montagu's Directions, they had brought a Box of Writings.
Ordered, That the Box be opened: And that Mr.
Montagu be present: And that he do select such Writings
as he thinks may be for the Service of the House; and
dispose of all other Writings which properly concerns
himself, as he shall think fit.
Mr. Montagu presented a Letter to the House, subscribed "Danby," dated the 17th of January 167/78:
Which was, by Mr. Speaker, read to the House, and is
as followeth; viz.
My Lord, London, 17 Jan. 1677/8.
I DID, by my Lord Dumbarton, write to you, at
large, all the Intelligence I could then give you; and
there has been nothing since worth the returning either
of your Expresses withal. My Son Dunblan arrived here
on Monday last: Who delivered me your Letters; and
acknowledges your very great Kindness to him, as I am
to do, both for him and myself, who you have obliged
by so many ways. Your Intelligence concerning Mons.
Ruvigny has not been the least of your favours; and
hitherto his Son's Steps have been very suitable to your
Information: For Yesterday he came to me, with Mons.
Barillon (having given me his Father's Letter the Day
before); and discoursed much upon the Confidence his
King hath of the Firmness of Ours to him; of the good
Opinion his Master has of me; of his King's Resolution to condescend to any thing that is not infamous
to him, for the Satisfaction of Our King; how certainly
Our King may depend upon all sorts of Assistance and
Supplies from his Master, in case the Friendship be
preserved; and, in short, went so far, as to seem desirous
to have me understand (altho he would not directly say
it), That his Master might be brought to part with Valenciences and Conde; but never with Tournay. And the
Main of their Drift was, to engage me to prevail with the
King to prevail with the Prince of Orange as to that
Town; and pressed the Matter upon me as a Thing,
wherein they thought I had an Interest of my own with
the Prince of Orange, sufficient to persuade him to put
an End to the War by that Means. I answered them (as
is most true), that there is nothing I am so desirous of as
the Peace; but I thought things were gone so far, as it
was only in their Master's Power to prevent the War;
and that I would contribute to any possible Expedient to
that End: But that they must apply themselves to the
King himself; and, when it came to my Part, I should
be found to contradict nothing which might be equal for
Preservation of the Friendship betwixt the Two Kings.
From me they went immediately to the King: Who tells
me, their Discourse was the same they had held with me:
And at last he desired, that whatever Expedient they
had to propose to him, might be put in Writing for him
to consider. And thus it stands at this time.
Mr. Montagu's Papers.
As to the Officer you mention (who the King assures
himself to be . . . .) he has taken further Time to resolve of
his Answer: And as to our main Points of Peace and War,
it will certainly depend upon the King of France his consenting to the First Propositions; Our King being engaged
to oppose any Party that shall refuse them: Nor will the
Time for that Consideration be much longer, since it will
be impossible but the King must come to some Declaration
of his Mind to the Parliament, when it meets. That
which makes the Hopes of Peace yet less probable is, That
the Duke grows every Day less inclined to it, and has
created a greater Indifferency in the King, than I could
have imagined: Which, being added to the French
King's Resolutions not to part with Tournay, does, I confess, make me despair of any Accommodation. Nevertheless, I am assured, that One principal Cause of this
Adjournment for Thirteen Days, has been, to see if any
Expedient for the Peace could have been found in that
Time: And the Effect of the Adjournment hath hitherto
been, that nobody will now believe other, than that the
Peace is already concluded betwixt us and France.
I am, my Lord,
Your Excellency's most humble
and most Obedient Servant,
Mr. Montagu delivered in another Letter, subscribed
"Danby," and dated, from London, 25th of March 1678:
Which was, by Mr. Speaker, likewise read to the House;
and is as followeth:
SINCE my writing to you by Mr. Brisbon, the
Resolutions have been altered as to the sending you
Instructions as yet for the proposing any thing to the
French King. The Particulars which will be consented
to on the Part of the Confederates, and of which This is
a Copy, will be communicated to you by Mr. Secretary
Coventry: But you will have no other Direction from
him about them, but only thereby to be enabled to find
the Pulse of that King, or his Ministers at least, against
the Time that you shall receive Orders to make the
Proposals to him. That you may know from whence
the Nicety of this Affair proceeds, it is necessary to
inform you, that, for fear of its being ill resented by the
Parliament here, the King will not make any Proposal at
all of Peace, unless he shall be pressed to it by the
Confederates: And, although, by Mr. Godolphin, he is
sufficiently informed, that they desire the Peace upon the
Terms sent you by the Secretary; yet, not having received that Desire formally, the Council will not advise
his Majesty to let his Ambassador propose That which
he is not formally impowered to make good: And so,
by staying for that formal Power, which, by Letter, his
Majesty is sufficiently authorized to propose, the Time
will be lost of effecting the Peace, if at all it can be had.
To supply this Defect therefore, and to prevent the
King's sending again into Holland before he knows the
Mind of France, I am commanded by his Majesty to let
you know, That you are to make the Propositions inclosed
to the King of France; and to tell him, that the King
will undertake for the seeing them made good on the Part
of Spain and Holland, in case they shall be accepted by
him. And, in your Answer, you must write the same
thing to the Secretary, by way only of having felt the
King's Pulse, which you must do to the King, as a full
Answer from the King of France, and such a one as his
Majesty may depend upon, whatever That shall be. For
the more dexterous Management of this Matter, the King
is advised to shew these Propositions to Mons. Barillon;
but not to give him a Copy: So that, by the Strength of
Memory, it is expected he shall write to his Master: And
by that Means only are we to hope for an Answer to a
Matter of this vast Importance: And consequently, you
may imagine, what a Satisfaction we are like to reap from
it when it comes. I doubt not, but by your Conduct it
will be brought to a speedy Issue, which is of as great
Importance as the Thing itself; there being no Condition
worse for his Majesty than his standing unresolved betwixt Peace and War.
I find by Mons. Barillon, that, 'tis like, some Places,
which are Dependencies upon greater Towns, may be
demanded by the King of France: But, if he intend the
Peace (which you will do very well to know his Mind
fully in), you may justly say, you hope he will neither
stand upon One single Place (though a fortified one), nor
upon any Place unfortified, which is a Dependant upon
those which are to be restored to Spain. And if any thing
should be moved, about Sicily to remain in the French
Hands until the Peace of Sweden be concluded, you are
only to say, That you are not impowered to say any thing
upon it; and you are confident, the King has done all
he could to get the utmost Conditions they would consent to: Only you are to say, That the King has again
sent about Conde, not being well satisfied that they have
not left it in his Power to give or refuse as he should
have found convenient; and hopes still for some good
Answer. In case the Conditions of the Peace shall be
accepted, the King expects to have Six Millions of Livres
yearly for three Years, from the Time that this Agreement shall be signed betwixt his Majesty and the King
of France: because it will be Two or Three Years before
he can hope to find his Parliament in Humour to give
him Supplies, after the having made any Peace with
France: And the Ambassador here has agreed to that
Sum, but not for so long a Time. If you find the Peace
will not be accepted, you are not to mention the Money
at all: And all possible Care must be taken to have this
whole Negociation as private as is possible, for fear of
giving Offence at Home; where, for the most part, we
hear, in Ten Days after, of any thing that is communicated to the French Ministers. I must again repeat it
to you, That, whatever you write upon this Subject to
the Secretary (to whom you must not mention a Syllable
of the Money), you must say only as a Thing you believe
they will consent to, if you had Power formally to make
those Demands. Pray inform yourself to the Bottom
of what is to be expected from France; and assure them,
that you believe, This will be the last Time that you
shall receive any Proposition of a Peace, if This be
rejected (as, indeed, I believe, it will); so that you
may take your own Measures, as well as the King,
upon it. I am
Your Excellency's most Faithful
and Obedient Servant,
Earl of Danby's Impeachment.
The Question being propounded, That there is sufficient Matter of Impeachment against the Lord Treasurer;
The Question being put, That this Question shall be
The House divide.
The Noes go forth.
||Sir Eliab Harvy,
||for the Yeas,
|Sir Geo. Hungerford,
||Sir Edm. Jenings,
||for the Noes,
|Sir Rob. Markham.
And so it was resolved in the Affirmative.
Resolved, That there is sufficient Matter of Impeachment against the Lord Treasurer.
Ordered, That a Committee be appointed to prepare
and draw up Articles of Impeachment against the Lord
And it is referred to Lord Cavendish, Mr. Sachaverell,
Mr. Williams, Sir Tho. Clerges, Mr. Vaughan, Sir John
Trevor, Mr. Hamden, Sir Edw. Deering, Mr. Montagu,
Sir Tho. Meres, Mr. Bennet, Mr. Powle, Mr. Solicitor
General, Colonel Titus, Sir Eliab Harvy, Mr. Harbord,
Sir Robert Sawyer, Sir Tho. Lee, Sir Wm. Coventry, Sir
Nich. Carew, Serjeant Mainard, Sir Tho. Littleton, or
any Five of them: And they are impowered to send for
Persons, Papers, and Records; and to receive any further Information or Evidence. And it is particularly
recommended to the Care of the Lord Cavendish and
Mr. Williams: And that the Letters now read be delivered to their Hands; and that they do produce the
same To-morrow Morning, to be entered in the Journal.
Resolved, That Mr. Speaker shall not, at any time,
adjourn the House, without a Question first put, if it be
Resolved, That this Resolution be entered in the Jour
nal, as a Standing Order of this House.
And then the House adjourned till To-morrow
Morning, Eight of the Clock.