June 1657
An Act for the better suppressing of Theft upon the Borders of England and Scotland, and for discovery of High-way Men and other Felons.

Sponsor

History of Parliament Trust

Publication

Author

C.H. Firth, R.S. Rait (eds)

Year published

1911

Supporting documents

Pages

1262-1266

Citation Show another format:

'June 1657: An Act for the better suppressing of Theft upon the Borders of England and Scotland, and for discovery of High-way Men and other Felons.', Acts and Ordinances of the Interregnum, 1642-1660 (1911), pp. 1262-1266. URL: http://www.british-history.ac.uk/report.aspx?compid=56622 Date accessed: 23 July 2014.


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Contents

June, 1657

[26 June, 1657.]

English Counties on the Borders and Places on the North side of Tyne.Counties in Scotland.; A private Sessions to be held.; A private Sessions to be held.;A List to be given in of persons not responsible.; Such persons to be bound with Sureties.; In default of security such person to be committed or transported not to return in seven years under penalty of Felony

Whereas the Inhabitants of both Nations that live near to the Mountains, and in Dales, and Marish and other obscure places upon the Borders, having been long accustomed to Idleness and Theft, whilest the two Nations were under several Governments, and cannot be brought off from their old, evill and accustomed manner of living, by reason of the scituation of their Habitations and Dwellings near to the great Bogs and Mountaines, and Large Waste grounds between England and Scotland, having thereby such opportunity, not onely at home to hide themselves and their prey or Booties of stollen Goods, but also of conveyance over the said Bogs, Mountaines and Large Wastes out of the Nation where their they commit these Felonies, into the other Nation, where their persons and stollen Goods are oftentimes sheltered and received by persons of their own bad quality and Confederacy, these bordering people of both Nations thus serving each other by turns, so as it is very hard to bring these people to be responsible to Justice, or to get them apprehended upon Justices Warrants to be brought to Tryal and Judgement, whereby they remain much encouraged and emboldened to continue in that their base and loose course of Living by Theft, to the great Infesting and Damage of the Bordering Counties of both Nations; For Remedy whereof, Be it Enacted by His Highness the Lord Protector and this present Parliament, and it is hereby Enacted and Ordained, That as to all the Bordering Counties and parts of England and Scotland; (viz.) The Counties of Northumberland, Cumberland, and Westmerland, or any parts or Members of them, any or either of them, and the parts and places lying on the North side of the River of Tyne, commonly called and known by the Names of Bedlingtonshire, Norhamshire, and Islandshire, the Town and County of Newcastle upon Tyne, the Town of Berwick upon Tweed, and the Bounds thereof upon the English side; the Counties or Sheriffdomes of Berwick, Roxbrough, Selkirk, Pebles, Wigton, and Dumfreeze, upon the Scotish side; That it shall and may be lawfull to and for the respective Justices of Peace within any of the said respective Counties, Shires and Sheriffdomes who also are hereby required that once a year at least, any two or more of them (whereof one to be of the Quorum) do, and shall hold a private Sessions for the ends and purposes hereafter specified and declared, within all and every respective Hundred, Ward or Liberty within the respective Counties, Shires and Sheriffdomes aforesaid, whereof they shall give at least Fourteen daies warning to the Inhabitants of the time and place of their Sitting, by notice to every Parish within the respective Ward, Hundred or Division, and also Proclamation in the next Market-Town in open and full Market time, where at the place so appointed by them, they shall have power to call before them the Constables and Churchwardens, or other Parochial Officer or Officers, to give in upon Oath a perfect List of the Names of all such persons within the several and respective Parishes of the said Counties, Shires or Sheriffdomes, as live idly, and can give no good account how they maintain themselves, or that are of bad fame, and not having any visible Estate, Real or Personal, to the value of one hundred pounds Sterling Money, which may render him or them responsible; All which persons the said Church-wardens and Constables, or other Officer and Officers aforesaid, shall also upon Warrant from any of the said Justices, summon to appear before them the said Justices at the time and place by them appointed, and to bring with them and every of them two sufficient Sureties, each to be bound to His Highness the Lord Protector of the Commonwealth of England, Scotland, and Ireland, and his Successours, in a Recognizance, not exceeding the sum of Fifty pounds for each Surety, nor the sum of One hundred pounds for the principal persons thus to be secured, nor under Ten pounds for each Surety, nor under Twenty pounds for the person to be secured, that he shall be of good Behaviour, and upon any occasion so requiring, he will and shall from time to time make his personal appearance within Fourteen daies after the delivery of the Warrant of any Justice of Peace for that County, either to himself, or to either of his Sureties, requiring him or them to answer to any Treasons, Murthers, Robberies, Felonies or other Misdemeanours whatsoever; All which Recognizances the said Justices of Peace in their respective Counties, Shires, and Sheriffdomes, are hereby authorized to take the acknowledgement of, and in case of Forfeiture, return the same into the publique Exchequer at Westminster or Edenburgh respectively; And in case any such person or persons cannot, or shall not finde such security, That then the said Justices are hereby authorized and required to commit him or them to the common Goal for the said County, Shire, or Sheriffdome, there to remain without Bail untill the next Quarter Sessions for the Peace, where they the Justices of Peace for the said respective Counties, Shires or Sheriffdomes, are hereby authorized and required, and impowred by Order of Court, to continue him or them in prison, or commit him or them to the House of Correction until such time as he or they shall procure such Security as beforesaid, or otherwise to Transport him or them to some of the Plantations in America, belonging to this Commonwealth, not to return for seven years without License from his Highness the Lord Protector or his Successors, under the penalty of Felony. And in case any such person or persons make default to appear at the Time and Place appointed, having lawfull warning given as beforesaid, and the same Testified upon Oath, That then the said Justices of Peace shall, and are hereby Authorized, Required, and Impowred to proceed against him or them as beforesaid, whensoever he or they shall be found and apprehended.

Recognizances delivered in the next Sessions.; Fees.; Recognizance shall be for life unless in case of the death of a surety or discharge.; Recognizances shall be called once a year at least.

And be it hereby further Enacted, That the said Justices of the Peace shall at the next Sessions for the Peace (after the taking of such Recognizance) deliver all and every of them to the Clerk of the Peace for the said County, Shire or Sheriffdome, who is hereby required to file up the same upon a file, and the same safely keep; And that the said Justices Clerk shall not take above Three shillings for any such Recognizance for any one person, whereof the one Moyety for themselves, the other Moyety for the Clerk of the Peace for filing and keeping the same; And that the respective Clerks of the Peace shall not take above Six pence for the Search and a Note of any persons Name, and the Names of his Sureties, of any that shall require the same; nor that any such person or persons to be bound by Recognizance as beforesaid, shall be put to the trouble or charge of Renewing his or their Recognizance or Recognizances, but the same to continue of force during their Lives, except in case of death of any Surety or Sureties, or their declaring their unwillingness to stand longer bound, except the Justices of Peace for the respective Counties in open Sessions of the Peace, or Commissioners of Oyer and Terminer at their general Goal Delivery, the Judges of Assize, or Judges in Criminal Causes in their respective Circuits, or some of them, shall finde just cause to release such Recognizance or Recognizances; for which end all and every of the said Recognizances shall be called once every year or oftner (if occasion shall require) at the respective private Sessions for every County, Hundred, Ward, and Liberty or Division, within any of the said respective Counties, Shires and Sheriffdomes, and the persons bound to make their personal appearance, the Clerk or Cryer not taking above Four pence for calling any one Bond.

Offences done in Scotland shall be there tryed.

And be it hereby further Enacted by the authority aforesaid, That if at any time or times hereafter, any person or persons shall commit any offence or offences within the Nation of Scotland, which by the Lawes of the Nation of England, is, are, or shall be declared or adjudged to be Petty Treason, Murther, Manslaughter, Felonious burning of Houses and Corn, Burglary, Robbing of houses by day, Robbery, Theft or Rape, and do, and shall fly or escape into the Nation of England, and be, or shall be apprehended within any of the said Counties of Northumberland, Cumberland, Westmerland, or any parts or Members of the same, or within the parts or places lying on the North side of the River of Tyne, commonly called or known by the names of Bedlingtonshire, Norhamshire, and Islandshire, the Town and County of Newcastle upon Tyne, and the Town of Berwick upon Tweed, with the Bounds and Limits thereof, that then it shall and may be lawfull for the Justices of Assize, or any one of them in absence of the other, the Justices of Goal-Delivery at their Goal-Delivery, or any four of them, or the Justices of Peace in their General or Quarter Sessions, or any four of them, upon due and mature examination of the said Offence and Offences in open Sessions, and pregnant proofs of the same, by Warrant under their Hands and Seals, to remand and send all and every such Offender and Offenders into the Nation of Scotland, there to receive their Tryal for any the Offences aforesaid by them there committed.

Offences done in England shall be there tried.

And it is hereby further Enacted, That if at any time or times hereafter, any person or persons shall commit any Offence or Offences within the Nation of England, which by the Lawes of the Nation of Scotland, is or shall be declared or adjudged to be Petty Treason, Murther, Man-slaughter, Felonious burning of Houses and Corn, Burglary, Robbing of Houses by day, Robbery, Theft, or Rape, and do or shall fly or escape into the Nation of Scotland, and be, or shall be apprehended within any of the said Counties or Sheriffdomes of Berwick, Roxbrough, Selkirk, Pebles, Dumfreeze or Wigton, That then it shall and may be lawfull for the Judges in Criminal Causes, or any one of them, the Justices of Peace for the respective Shires or Sheriffdomes, or any four of them, upon due and mature examination of the said Offence and Offences in open Sessions, and pregnant proofs of the same, by Warrant under their Hands and Seals, to remand and send all and every such Offender and Offenders into the Nation of England, there to receive their Tryal for any the Offences aforesaid by them there committed.

Ten pounds shall be given for a reward to the discoverer of any that shall commit any Robbery, Burglary, &c.

And for the better and more effectual discovery and prosecution of Thieves and High-way Men, Be it Enacted by the authority aforesaid, That such person or persons, who shall at any time from and after the Four and twentieth of July, One thousand six hundred fifty seven, discover to any Justice of the Peace or any other Officer of Justice, any person that hath committed, or shall commit within England, Scotland, or Ireland, any Robbery on the High-way or Burglary, or that hath or shall Feloniously break open any Dwellinghouse, or Feloniously enter into any such House, or there use any violence upon any person, or steal any Money or Goods, and shall apprehend or cause to be apprehended such Offender, upon conviction of such Offender as apprehended upon such discovery, shall have a reward of ten pounds for every such Offender so apprehended and convicted; and all and every Sheriff and Sheriffs of the respective Counties or Sheriffdomes where such conviction shall be had, be required upon the Certificate of the Judge, or under the hands of two or more Justices of the Peace before whom such conviction shall be had, to pay unto such person or persons who shall discover and apprehend such Offender, or upon whose discovery such Offender shall be apprehended, the reward aforesaid of Ten pounds for every Offender so apprehended and convicted, out of the Publique Moneys received by him in that County, and the same shall be allowed unto him upon his Accompt in the Exchequer.

The like reward to such as shall discover Mossetroopers or Tories.

And be it further Enacted and Declared, That any person or persons that shall discover any Felon or Felons (commonly called or known by the name of Moss-Troopers, residing upon the Borders of England and Scotland, or any Tories in Ireland) who upon such discovery shall be apprehended and convicted of any common Felony (Petty Larceny onely excepted) shall upon the said conviction have the like encouragement of Ten pounds; and all Sheriffs of the respective Counties where the Fact shall be committed, and the party convicted, shall make payment thereof accordingly.