DIE Sabbati, 25 Maii.
Domini tam Spirituales quam Temporales præsentes
Epus. Lich. & Cov.
|Ds. Cowper, Cancellarius.
Dux Kingston, C. P. S.
Dux Kent, Senescallus.
Dux Newcastle, Camerarius.
Dux Bucks & Nor.
Viscount Say & Seale.
Ds. Willughby Br.
Ds. Howard Eff.
Ds. North & Grey.
Ds. Pawlet Bas.
L. Conway takes the Oaths.
This Day Francis Lord Conway took the Oaths, and
made and subscribed the Declaration, and also took and
subscribed the Oath of Abjuration, pursuant to the
E. of Oxford's Case; Report of Precedents relating to the Continuance of Impeachments.
The Lord Trevor (according to Order) reported from
the Committee, appointed to search and report such
Precedents, as may the better enable this House to judge
what may be proper to be done, on Occasion of the
Petition of the Earl of Oxford, and the Case of the said
Earl, as it now stands before this House, "That, pursuant to the Instruction given them, in the First
Place, to search for and report such Precedents as
relate to the Continuance of Impeachments from
Session to Session, or from Parliament to Parliament,
they had searched several Precedents; and find,
"That, on the 6th of December 1660, an Impeachment against William Drake, Citizen and Merchant of
London, was brought from the Commons, and read;
charging him with printing a seditious Pamphlet:
And he was ordered to be apprehended as a Delinquent.
"12th December 1660, he was brought to the Bar;
and confessed he wrote the Book mentioned in the
"19th December, the said Impeachment considered; it
was Ordered and Declared, "That, if this Parliament
be dissolved before this House have Time to give
Judgement, the Attorney General should proceed
against him at Law, upon the said Offence."
"3d Jan'y 1666, Articles of Impeachment, of
high Crimes, &c. were delivered, at a Conference,
against the Lord Viscount Mordaunt.
"10th Jan'y, he was ordered to put in his
"17th Jan'y, he accordingly presented it.
"7th Feb'y, a Conference and Free Conference were
had, concerning this Impeachment.
"8th Feb'y 1666, the Parliament was prorogued;
and no further Proceeding on that Impeachment after
"24th April 1668, Articles of Impeachment, for
high Crimes, &c. against Sir William Penn, were
delivered by the Commons, at a Conference.
"27th April, he was ordered to answer.
"29th April, he delivered his Answer, at the Bar;
and a Copy of it was sent to the Commons.
"After Two Adjournments, by His Majesty's Desire; the Parliament was, on the First of March 1668,
prorogued, by Commission, to the 19th of October
following; and no more Proceedings were had concerning the said Impeachment.
"5th Dec'r 1678, Lord Arundell of Wardour, Earl
of Powys, Lord Bellasis, Lord Petre, and Lord Viscount Stafford, were impeached of High Treason,
"23d Dec'r, Earl of Danby was impeached of
High Treason; and Articles were brought up.
"27th Dec'r, he was ordered to answer.
"The Parliament was dissolved by Proclamation,
dated 24th of January 1678.
"6th March 1678, a new Parliament met.
"13th of the same Month, the Parliament was prorogued to the 15th of that Month.
"17th of March, the House, considering whether
the last Prorogation made a Session, were of Opinion,
That it was a Session in relation to the Acts of Judicature, but not as to the determining Laws determinable upon the End of a Session. And the same
Day it was referred to the Committee for Privileges
to consider, "Whether Petitions of Appeal, presented
last Parliament, be still in Force to be proceeded on;
and also to consider of the State of the Impeachments
brought up from the Commons last Parliament, and
all the Incidents relating thereto."
"18th March, Report was made from the said Committee for Privileges, "That, upon Perusal of the Journal of the 29th of March 1673, they were of Opinion, That, in all Cases of Appeals and Writs of
Error, they continue and were to be proceeded on in
Statu quo, as they stood at the Dissolution of the
last Parliament, without beginning de novo; and also
were of Opinion, That the Dissolution of the last
Parliament did not alter the State of the Impeachments brought up by the Commons in that Parliament.
"19th March, that Report was considered; and,
upon the Question, was agreed to.
"20th of March 1678, the Earl of Danby was ordered to answer; and divers further Proceedings
were had upon the said Impeachments, in that and
"12th Nov'r, 1680, the Commons, by Message,
acquaint the Lords with their Resolution to proceed
to the Trial of the Lords in The Tower, and forthwith to begin with Viscount Stafford; and to desire
a Day for his Trial.
"Whereupon his Trial was appointed on the 30th
"30th of the same Nov'r, his Lordship's Trial began in Westm'r Hall.
"4th Dec'r following, the Lord High Steward gave
the House an Account, "That, after Viscount Stafford
had summed up his Evidence, and the Managers had
replied, his Lordship propounded several Points in
Law, arising out of the Matter of Fact, to which he
desired to be heard by his Counsel; One of which
"Whether Proceedings ought to be continued from
Parliament to Parliament upon Impeachments?
"To which the House, upon Consideration, refused
to hear his Counsel.
"7th Dec'r, Judgement upon him was pronounced,
as usual in Cases of High Treason.
"21st of the same Month, Mr. Seymour was impeached of high Crimes, &c.; and Articles were
brought up, and read; and he was ordered to answer.
"23d of the same December, he put in his Answer;
and the same was read, while he was at the Bar;
and a Copy of it to be sent to the Commons.
"3d Jan'y following, which was the next Day the
House sat, he petitioned for a speedy Trial. And a
Message was sent to the Commons, to give them Notice
of it; their Lordships finding no Issue joined by Replication. And Counsel were assigned him.
"8th Jan'y, his Trial was ordered to be on the 15th
of the same January; and a Message was sent to the
Commons, to acquaint them with it, that they might
reply if they thought fit. No further Proceeding
was had on that Impeachment.
"7th of the same January, Sir William Scroggs was
impeached of High Treason; and Articles of Impeachment were brought up. He was bailed; and
ordered to answer the 14th of the same Month.
"The said 7th of January, the Earl of Tyrone was
impeached of High Treason.
"10th of Jan'y 1680, the Parliament was prorogued; and dissolved by Proclamation the 18th of
"21st March 1680, a new Parliament met.
"24th of the same March, Earl of Danby petitioned
to be bailed: And the same Day Sir William Scroggs'
Answer was read; as also his Petition, desiring a
short Day for the Commons to reply; Copies of
which Answer and Petition were sent to the Commons.
"No further Proceedings were had against Sir
"26th March 1681, Message from the Commons,
"That they, having formerly demanded Judgement
against the Earl of Danby, desire now a Day may be
appointed to give it."
"The said Message was ordered to be considered on
"28th of the same Month, the Parliament was dissolved.
"19th May 1685, the House was acquainted, "That
the Lords committed to The Tower upon Impeachment had entered into Recognizances, in the King's
Bench, to appear the First Day of next Parliament;
which was that Day." Accordingly they were called
to the Bar, and their Appearances recorded; and
they petitioned for Relief.
"22d May 1685, upon Consideration of the Cases
of the Earl of Powys, Lord Arundell, Lord Bellasis,
and Earl of Danby, contained in their Petitions, it was
Resolved, upon the Question, "That the Order of the
19th of March 1678 / 9; should be annulled and reversed
as to Impeachments."
"25th May 1685, an Order made, for the Attorney
General to have Recourse to the Indictments against
the Earl of Powys, Lord Arundell, and Lord Bellasis,
in order to the entering a Noli prosequi thereon, according to His Majesty's Warrant; and it was further
ordered, that their Bail should be discharged.
"1st June 1685, upon Motion on Behalf of several
Peers, who were Bail for the Appearance of the Earl
of Powys, Earl of Danby, Lord Arundell, Lord Bellasis, and Earl of Tyrone in the Kingdom of Ireland,
the First Day of this Parliament, whose Recognizances were entered into in the King's Bench; it was
ordered, That the said Lords, as also all Persons,
Peers or others, that were bailed for their Appearance, should be discharged.
"26th October 1698, the Earl of Salisbury and Earl
of Peterborow were impeached of High Treason, in
departing from their Allegiance; and being reconciled to the Church of Rome, by Message from the
Commons. And the Earl of Peterborow, being, by the
Black Rod, brought to the Bar, was ordered to be
committed to The Tower; and the Earl of Salisbury
to be brought to the Bar, by the Chief Governor
of The Tower, on Monday.
"28th October, the Earl of Salisbury accordingly was
brought to the Bar; and the said Governor of The
Tower was ordered to take him into his Custody.
"27th Jan'y following, the Parliament was prorogued; and dissolved by Proclamation the 6th of
"A new Parliament met, 20th of March 1689.
"5th April 1690, an Order was made, to take into
Consideration, whether Impeachments continue from
Parliament to Parliament, on the Wednesday following.
"8th and 10th of the same Month, Consideration of
that Matter was adjourned.
"7th July 1690, the Parliament was prorogued.
"2d Octob'r 1690, the Earl of Peterborow petitioned
to be discharged, having been kept Prisoner in The
Tower for almost Two Years, notwithstanding a Dissolution and several Prorogations had intervened; as
also an Act of free and general Pardon: Whereupon
the Judges were ordered to attend, to give their
Opinions, whether he be pardoned by that Act. The
Judges were also ordered to give their Opinions, on
the same Matter, upon the Earl of Salisbury's Petition,
praying likewise to be discharged.
"6th of the same Month, the Judges, according to
Order, delivered their Opinions, as follow; viz.
"That, if the said Earls Crimes and Offences
were committed before the 13th of February 1688,
and not in Ireland, nor beyond the Seas, they were
pardoned by the said Act;" and it was resolved,
That the said Earls should be admitted to Bail. And
a Committee was appointed to inspect and consider
Precedents, whether Impeachments continue in Statu
quo from Parliament to Parliament.
"7th October, the said Earls were both bailed at the
"30th of the same October, Report was made from
the Committee, appointed the 6th of the same October,
of several Precedents brought to their Lordships by
Mr. Petit from The Tower; and also that they had
examined the Journals of this House, which reach
from the 12th of Henry the VIIth; and all the Precedents of Impeachments since that Time were in a
List now in the Clerk's Hands; among all which,
none are found to continue from One Parliament to
another, except the Lords who were lately so long in
"After Consideration of which Report, and reading
the Orders made the 19th of March 1678/9, and the
22d of May 1685, concerning Impeachments; and
long Debate thereupon; it was Resolved, That the
Earl of Salisbury and Earl of Peterborow should be discharged from their Bail; and accordingly they and
their Sureties were ordered to be discharged from
their said Recognizances.
"A List has been produced before the Committee,
which to them seems to be the List referred to in
the said Report; which is ready to be produced, if
the House shall think the same necessary.
"12th Nov'r 1690, upon Motion, "That a Day be
appointed, for the Explanation of the Votes of the
30th of October last;" it was ordered to take the same
into Consideration on the 18th of the same November,
and all the Lords to be summoned; on which Day the
House sat: But it doth not appear by the Journal
that any Thing was done in Pursuance of that
"27th April 1695, the Duke of Leeds was impeached of high Crimes and Misdemeanors; and
Articles were on the 29th of the same Month exhibited against him. He put in his Answer the next
Day; and a Copy of it was sent to the Commons.
"1st May following, a Message was sent to the Commons, to put them in Mind of the said Impeachment;
the Lords conceiving the Session could not continue
"3d of the same May, the Parliament was prorogued;
and dissolved by Proclamation, dated the 11th of
"24th of June 1701, the House of Commons having
impeached the Duke of Leeds on the 27th of April
1695; and on the 29th of the same Month exhibited
Articles against him, to which he answered; but the
Commons not prosecuting; the said Impeachment and
Articles were ordered to be dismissed.
"17th May 1698, Peter Longueville was, amongst
others, impeached of high Crimes, &c.; and Articles were brought up.
"27th of the same May, he put in his Answer, and
pleaded Not Guilty.
"28th June, the Trial of Goudet and others, upon
the Impeachments against them, was appointed on
the 4th of July next.
"The same Day, the said Goudet, Barrau, Seignoret,
Baudowin, Santiny, Diharce, and Pearse, relinquished
their Pleas, and pleaded Guilty; and the Black
Rod ordered to take them into Custody.
"30th June, Dumaistre put in his Answer, and
pleaded Guilty; and the Black Rod ordered to take
him into Custody.
"4th July 1698, Judgement was pronounced against
the Eight Persons abovementioned; and no further
Proceedings concerning Longueville.
"The next Day the Parliament was prorogued; and
dissolved by Proclamation, dated the 7th of July
"The Committee have also inquired of Precedents
of Indictments against Peers, which have been removed into the House of Lords by Certiorari, and
the Proceedings thereupon; and find, that, on the
19th of March 1677, the Proceedings against the
Earl of Pembroke, upon an Indictment, for the Death
of Nathaniel Cony, had before the Commissioners of
Oyer and Terminer at Hicks' Hall, upon which his
Lordship was found Guilty of Felony and Murder,
was brought into this House, in order to his Trial.
"4th April 1678, the said Earl was tried, and found
Guilty of Manslaughter.
"15th July following the Parliament was prorogued.
"11th Nov'r 1685, the Lord Mayor and the rest
of the Justices of Oyer and Terminer and General
Gaol Delivery for London and Middlesex were ordered to return, by virtue of His Majesty's Writ
of Certiorari, the Indictinent of High Treason, found
before them, against the Earl of Stamford, then
Prisoner in The Tower.
"14th Nov'r, the Indictment was delivered.
"16th Nov'r, the said Earl was ordered to be brought
to the Bar.
"17th Nov'r, his Lordship was brought accordingly,
examined, and his Trial appointed on the 1st of
December following; and an Address to His Majesty,
"That a Place be prepared in Westm'r Hall for his
"18th Nov'r, the King's Answer was reported,
"That He had given Order accordingly."
"20th Nov'r 1685, the Parliament was prorogued;
and, after several Prorogations, was dissolved the 2d
of July 1687.
"And there doth not appear any further Proceeding
on the said Indictment.
"4th Jan'y 1692, the Coroner's Inquest was brought
in, concerning the Death and Murder of William
Mountfort, wherein the Lord Mohun was found
to be aiding and assisting.
"4th Feb'y following, his Lordship was tried; and
found Not Guilty, and discharged.
"14th March following, the Parliament was prorogued.
"13th Dec'r 1697, a Writ of Certiorari was ordered,
for removing the Indictment found against the Lord
Mohun, concerning the Death of William Hill.
"10th Jan'y 1697, Resolved to proceed to his
"4th July 1698, the Clerk of the Crown read the
Indictment to his Lordship; and he pleaded His Majesty's Pardon: Which was allowed by the House;
and he was discharged.
"13th March 1698, an Indictment against the Earl
of Warwick, for the Murder of Coote, was brought by
"25th March 1699, Lord Mohun allowed a Copy
of his Indictment.
"28th March, the Earl of Warwick was tried, and
found Guilty of Manslaughter.
"29th of the same Month, the Lord Mohun was tried,
and found Not Guilty.
"4th May 1699, the Parliament was prorogued."
Which Report being read by the Clerk:
Motion that the Impeachment against the E. of Oxford is determined by the intervening Prorogation:
It was proposed, "To resolve, That the Impeachment
of the Commons against the Earl of Oxford is determined by the intervening Prorogation."
And, after Debate thereupon;
The Question was put, "That it is the Opinion
of this House, that the Impeachment exhibited
by the Commons of Great Britain, against
Robert Earl of Oxford and Earl Mortimer, for
High Treason and other high Crimes and
Misdemeanors, is determined by the intervening Prorogation?"
It was Resolved in the Negative.
Protest against rejecting it:
"1. Because there seems to be no Difference in Law
between a Prorogation and a Dissolution of a Parliament, which, in constant Practice, have had the
same Effect, as to Determination both of Judicial
and Legislative Proceedings; and consequently this
Vote may tend to weaken the Resolution of this
House, May the 22d, 1685, which was founded upon
the Law and Practice of Parliament in all Ages,
without One Precedent to the contrary; except in
the Cases which happened after the Order made the
19th of March 1678, which was reversed and annulled in 1685; and in Pursuance hereof the Earl of
Salisbury was discharged in 1690.
"2. Because this can never be extended to any but
Peers; for, by the Statute 4° Ed. IIIii, no Commoner
can be impeached for any Capital Crime: And it is
hard to conceive why the Peers should be distinguished, and deprived of the Benefit of all the
Laws of Liberty to which the meanest Commoner
in Britain is entitled; and this seems the more extraordinary, because it is done unasked by the Commons, who, as it is conceived, never can ask it with
any Colour of Law, Precedent, Reason, or Justice.
"North & Grey.
Committee to report Precedents as to Time of Trial.
Ordered, That it be an Instruction to the Committee, appointed to search and report such Precedents
as may the better enable this House to judge what may
be proper to be done, on Occasion of the Petition
of the Earl of Oxford, and the Case of the said Earl as it
now stands before this House, That they do search for,
and report, such Precedents as relate to the appointing
a Time of Trial.
Ordered, That the Committee to whom Hopkins'
Bill was referred be revived, and meet on Monday
Lords to be summoned.
Ordered, That all the Lords be summoned to
attend the Service of this House on Monday next.
Dominus Cancellarius declaravit præsens Parliamentum continuandum esse usque ad & in diem Lunæ, vicesimum septimum diem instantis Maii, hora undecima
Aurora, Dominis sic decernentibus.