A Collection of the State Papers of John Thurloe, Volume 3, December 1654 - August 1655. Originally published by Fletcher Gyles, London, 1742.
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April (1 of 6)
The state of Genoa to the protector.
Quod de mittendâ in Mediterraneum classe, nosque de eâ certiores reddendo cepit consilium celsitudo vestra, illud sanè nobis quam maximè gratum atque jucundum accidit: hoc enim pacto serenissimæ istius, ac nostræ insimul reipublicæ commeantium populorum navigationi ociùs consultum fore considimus, magnamque ad veteres necessitudines accessionem attulisse fatemur novam hanc erga nos benevolentiæ significationem; qua de re meritas ac debitas gratias agimus celsitudini vestræ, cui mutuam voluntatem nostram exhibentes ex animo pollicemur, nullam nos unquam prætermissuros opportunitatem, quâ generali ejusdem classis dignissimo præfecto Roberto Blake in iis, quæ ad sui commodum et voluptatem ex qualibet hujus dominii parte provenire poterunt presto esse, propensionemque, quâ Anglicam nationem semper complexi sumus, quâque ejus naves intra ditionis nostræ portus peramanter excipimus, magis magisque confirmare valeamus, D. O. M. deprecantes, ut cuncta ad voluntatem celsitudinis vestræ feliciter fluere non dedignetur.
Capt. Whitshorn to secretary Thurloe.
According to orders received from vice-admiral Lawson, of the 6th of March last, to ply between Flamborough-head and Yarmouth, for the apprehending of all such persons, who might bee suspected as enemies to this present government; in referrence to the said orders, on the 25th of the last month, I meeting with a Scotch barke, wherein finding three passingers, Scots, bound (as pretended) for Leith, who not giving a satisfactory accompt of their departure this land, thought it convenient to detaine them, and deliver them into the custody of those, who might bring them to a farther examination; and accordingly this day have sent them to the governour of Hull, there to be secured or releised, as cause shall bee found. The inclosed declares their names and pretences of their going. I should not have detained them soe long on board, but that the wind blowing hard at east, forced us to keepe sea, and at present wanting water, thought noe place fitter than Humber. The strict orders, that lately came to my view at Burlington, insites mee to have the more care in apprehending, especially such, who have not clear passes since the late insurrection. Haveing not else at present, but my faithfull service presented to your honors, desiring the lord to protect you against all such as are conspiritors against him and this commonwealth, take leave, and subscribe myself
Alexander Taudrick, aged 23 years, of a light brown hair, hanging, full fixed, somewhat tall, and slender, and servant to the earl of Dalhousie, pretends, that he was sent by his lady to the said earl, he being upon composition for his estate, and hath a passe from general Monck, dated the 14th of September last. He hath two books, whereof one is directed to a member of the house, to maintain episcopacy; the other directed to the lord protector and his council, instructing them how to govern by way of derision, wherein he excites all factions whatsoever to a general insurrection, and disturbance of this present government.
William Cauterwood, aged 25, of a dark-brown long hair, middle stature, slender, and of a good complexion, having no pass, but alledgeth to be a surgeon and an apothecary, having for four years past practised in London; and lay at one mr. Giddings, a barber, at Paul's-chain.
James Findle, aged 21, of a dark, short, brown hair, curled, somewhat tall, and slender, thin faced, well coloured, a pretended merchant, having a pass from one capt. Sutton, of St. Andrew's, of the 6th of February last, but hath no commodities in the said bark; his pass was granted for himself and servant, but hath no servant with him.
These pretend to be examined by one mr. John Cumpton, a searcher of the blockhouse at Tilbury, and were cleared, as they say, but have nothing to shew for it; and hearing of a late defeat given to the adverse party, made the greater jealousy, that they might be fled from them.
Bordeaux, the French embassador in England, to his father.
You will have seen, by my foregoing letters, the new obstacle that hath happened to my negotiation. It is not yet taken away, notwithstanding that I have declared and assured my commissioners, that I had no advice of a general seisure, and that the letters bearing date the 3d of this month do only speak of an order given by monsieur de Vendosme, which was only executed at Havre, and whereof the other cities had sent complaints about it to the court; and if the letters had arrived here to day, they would have pacified the alarm, that was presently taken by the merchants here. In the mean time I have not failed to present the secretary of state and my commissioners, that they would let me know the last resolution of his highness. They do pay me with delays; and although I do speak of taking leave, by their discourse there doth appear a design to gain yet some further time, before they conclude; which I am as much grieved and vext at, as those at court can be; and if they knew my inclinations, and the condition of my affairs, you would have no great trouble to persuade them, (unless I would steal away without taking leave, which I think not fit to do) there cannot be any thing added to the endeavours that are used by me to conclude or break. There is all likelihood of the first, and as I believe it is of more advantage to the king, than the other, I shall not scruple to extend my orders as much as the honour and interest of his majesty will bear it; that so my voyage may not be fruitless, and that I may discharge myself of the ill will, which some of my superiors might bear unto me for not concluding, although at present they do declare they do not much value it. Yet I cannot deny, that in effect, after so many delays, they have cause to be angry at the proceedings of this government. I am very much engaged to the earl of Brienne, for taking upon him to justify my conduct; and to condemn the impatience of another, but without diminishing any thing of the acknowledgment, which his good offices do oblige me to have. I can say, that he cannot without injustice fee me charged with reproaches, and not desend me. I hope here will not be many letters more to write to the court, for I do expect a sudden end of my treaty; and a good end will make amends for all delays. I do not write to the court by this ordinary, for I have nothing to write to them, but the continuation of the delay, which is used, till they are fully informed of the general seisure, which is expected by this post. I have always, when my commissioners have spoken to me about it, given them full assurance of the contrary; and at the same time protested to depart, if a speedy resolution were not given me; for which they took three days. I should think myself very happy, if I could be dispatched in six.
Major Creed to the protector.
May it please your highnes,
I Thought it my duty to present unto you, that Sherington Talbot, of Salop in the countie of Worcester, esq; is seized on by mee. His being at Salisbury he consesseth, but pretendeth business at the assizes. I have sent the deposition taken from him to your secretary Thurloe, and should bee glad to receive your highnes commands concerning him. I likewise seized the person of one Sacheverill, an Oxfordshire gentleman, for harbouring a suspicious person in his house, whoe went at first by the name of Stanley, and afterwards by the name of Wallop. It is generally reported in the country to bee Charles Stuarte; he stay'd at this gentleman's house 'til the rising at Salisbury, and then went his way. I have also given the secretary a full account of this busines. I have no more, but presume to subscribe myself,
Middlesex ss. The information of Thomas Elwes, gent. taken upon oath, before William Robinson, esq; against Henry Simonds, on the second day of April, 1655.
This informant faith, that about July or August last, the said Henry Simonds went out of this nation beyond the feas into Holland, as this informant believeth, and as the said Henry Simonds consessed to this informant. And this informant further faith, that the said Henry Simonds consessed unto him, that he the said Henry Simonds spoke with the Scotish king, meaning Charles Stuart, eldest son to the late king, when he was beyond sea; and that the said Scotish king would have knighted him the said Simonds there; and that he the said Simonds was to have sir John Brownlow's house in Drury-lane, when the said Scotish king should come into England, for good service, which he the said Simonds either had done, or was to do for the said Scotish king. And this informant further faith, that he the said Simonds hath divers times drank healths to the said Scotish king, wishing him prosperity and success in England, and particularly upon the nine and twentieth day of March last, the said Simonds consessed to this informant, that he had been drinking the said Scotish king's health, and would have engaged this informant to go into the room and company in the said Simonds's house to do the like; but who the company were, with whom the said Simonds drank the said health, this informant knows not, only they were such as continued in the said Simonds's house (being a tavern) all day on thursday, and all night, and part of friday last. And this informant further faith, that the said Simonds's tavern is very much frequented with disorderly persons, who are of ill same, and that they continue there very late at night, and sometimes 'till morning. This informant further faith, that upon the said 29th of March, he the said Simonds told this informant, that the said Scotish king had a great army up for him in the north of England; and now he the said Simonds should have sir John Brownlow's house, and old Sexton's money. And this informant further faith, that upon the Lord's day was three weeks, the said Simonds sent for him this informant to his house, and when this informant came thither, he found one Thomas Bradford, a bailiff under the sheriff of Middlesex, and one White, the said bailiff's follower, who were drinking in the said Simond's house; and after this informant came thither, four more persons, viz. Henry Lucas, another bailiff, and Ralph Anthony, and one Baker, being either bailiffs or bailiffs followers, came in thither, who sat drinking in the said Simonds's house all the sermon time in the forenoon; and also one mr. Guy, a coroner, was there drinking with them. And this informant further faith, that in the afternoon of the same day, at sermon time, all the said company met there again, and sat drinking; and that this informant paid, of the reckoning, three shillings in the morning, and four shillings in the afternoon. And this informant further faith, that it is an usual custom at mr. Simonds's house, to entertain company to drink on the Lord's day. And further faith not.
The examination of Henry Simonds, taken on the same day:
Who faith, that true it is, he this examinate went into Holland about July last, but denieth, that he ever saw the Scotish king or any of his followers beyond the seas, or that he the said Scotish king ever spoke to this examinate, or promised any thing to him. This examinate farther denieth, that he ever reported any such thing as is mentioned in mr. Elwes's information, either as to his knighting, to sir John Brownlow's house, or to mr. Sexton's money. This examinate further denieth, that he ever drank the said Scotish king's health, or that he reported any thing of any army raised for the said Scotish king in the north; only this examinate confesseth, that the company mentioned in mr. Elwes's information were in this examinate's house, but they came there upon several occasions. And further faith not.
Mr. C. Henn to the protector.
May it please your highnes,
On thewsday night the 20th of this instant March, I did cause fower suspicious persons to be apprehended, as being part of those that were in the late insurrection. There examination did render them a great deale more suspicious, as will appeare to your highnes and your honorable council by these inclosed. I sindeing of them soe suspicious, haveing not one word of truth from them upon the account they gave mee of the places of their abode in the North cuntry, for they be places that I know as well as I know the towne wheare I live, and know the gentry that live in the townes, and those that live all about them; they could give me no accounte of any persons but one, which was a colonel in the king's army; and I further findeing them foe various in their examinations, I committed them to custody to the constable to keep them safe, 'till he should receive orders from your highnes, your honorable council, or myself, for their enlargement. I had intended to have sent on wednesday morning to your highnes, to have known your highnes's pleasure, what I should have done with them; but colonel Ingoldsby sending of me word on tuesday night, that he would be at home on the wednesday, I thought good to stay and advise with him, which on wednesday night accordingly he came, and we did advise together, and we did conclude to send them on the morrow morning with a strong guard to your highness; for two (fn. 1) of them did seem to be persons of great quality, for they had very rich cloathing in their portmanteaus, which might become persons of great quality to wear; but on wednesday night the constable did take the engagement of the innkeeper, where they lay, (because the innkeeper was loth to have them removed out of his house,) for the safe keeping of them till the morrow morning, he should come and deliver them up. But when the constable came in the morning, he should the innkeeper had let the two chief escape, and take all their rich apparel with them, and left their horses and their two men behind them; one of them is a poor countryman, which they took up to ride afore a portmanteau, and the other is a Frenchman, which I can get nothing out of; but truly, the innkeeper is a very untoward fellow, and will abuse all authority, so far as in him lies; for when I sent to apprehend these men as suspicious persons, being pursued by a countryman, which came and gave me intelligence, the innkeeper came to me in my own house, and told me, the constable and his guard should not fetch one man out of his house without a warrant. I thought good to give your highness an account of my proceedings concerning this bussines, hoping that your highness or your honorable council will be pleased to call this constable and innkeeper to an account for these persons, for I am perswaded it was either for affection or for a reward, that these two persons were let escape. Farther I desire to know your highnes's pleasure, what I should do with this Frenchman. So haveing noe more at present, I subscribe myselfe,
The examination of Jonas Cudworth, of Newcastle upon Tine, draper, taken the 2d day of April 1655.
Who faith, that in February he did hear a rumour, that there was a plot contrived to raise forces against his highnes the lord protector and the present government, and that one major Bridge, alias captain Bridge, was come over from beyond the seas, with commission for that intent, and that lodged for twenty days with mr. Ralph Dellavella, at his house Seaton Dellavella; that he was also engaged in the plot, as also his two kinsmen, mr. Robert Dellavella, and mr. William Dellavella, with one major Thomas Carneby; and that major Bridge, major Carneby, and mr. William Dellavella, had each of them 50 l. sent from London towards their charges; and that mr. William Dellavella had gotten fifty horse in readiness.
That there was a design to surprize Newcastle, Tinmouth Castle, Berwick, and Carlisle; and that he, this examinate, was asked, if occasion were, whether he could not procure 5 or 6 men for his part, to come into Newcastle.
That a gentleman coming from Piersbridge, having had some discourse with young mr. Thomas Witham, of Cliff, in the bishopric of Durham, did hear that some gentlemen had drawn him in, and that he had got up 5 horse, which gentleman told mr. James Shaftoe, of Tanfield Leigh, that he had diswaded mr. Wytham from that design, and caused him to sell his horses; and likewise, that mr. Byerley junior in the bishoprick near Tees, had disbursed 200 l. for horses for that service; and that the rendezvous for the north were to be upon Bockingfield-moor, Spenny-moor, and Gatherley-moor; and the reason they did not advance was, the lord Thomas Fairfax was to be general, and the lord Willoughby lieutenant general; and that some business at London obstructed the lord Willoughby his coming down to York; but so soon as he came, all the north would rise.
Commissary general Reynolds to secretary Thurloe.
I Received his highnes's commands for the sending mr. Armestrong and mr. Kynaston to London, and accordingly they are conveyed by major Packer's troope by the way of Oxford, as neere as the post rode, and more convenient. I have enclosed a deposition against Kynaston, which, with his owne consession, will be sufficieut proofe. He hath since affirmed, that he thought sir Thomas Harris was in armes; otherwise he would not have mentioned him in his confession. The examination of Jones will acquaint you with the name of an agent from the late king of Scots, about whom I have sent into Cheshire; but if he be gone northward, as is supposed, I hope colonel Lilborne may light upon him; if you be pleased to send notice unto him. I have endeavoured allwayes for the finding out this whole designe in these parts, yet cannot get such a light therein, as I desire, but I beleive we have so clear testimonyes, that many may be made examples by law (if his highnes be pleased to appoint a way for their triall.) Besides these two, I had given order for the laying an obstinate, and wicked, blasphemous fellow, one Eyton, in irons, who, as I was informed, and as Kynaston assirmes in his confession, knew the whole busines; but he is escaped this night with one bolt onely upon him. I shall be unservicable heere, if you be not pleased to send a commission for a court of warre; and greater inconveniencies will follow. I humbly leave it to you, who made so souldier-like a motion, when I came away, for increasing the army with best safety, speede, and conveniency, that I am bold to appeale unto you in this busines as a judge. I have presumed to write unto his highnes concerning the garrison, and do account it my duty to mind you, that there may be order given for the safety thereof, as I have proposed. I presume to desire your answer to my last, and remaine, sir,
Mr. Robert Werden to Thomas Scott, esq;
At the first noyse of these late intended risinges and feazinge of gentlemen and their horses, I did (by the advice of an officer of this place) render my self (to avoyde beinge troubled by stranger or marchinge troopes) to the commissioners appoynted by the protector for the militia of this country; who were pleased (havinge nothing to laye to my charge) to give mee this inclosed protection and passe. Notwithstandinge which, a troope belonginge to generall Lambert, under the command of capt. Spillman, hathe made mee a prisoner, and taken all my horses; yet prosesses he hathe nothing to saye against mee, more than that I am a suspected person. I tender him his choyse of any security in this towne, to be a true prisoner to my one house, which will not serve, but I am kept in an inne, at the charge of soldiers for a garde, and my horses and swords, which are all the armes I have (except two birdinge pieces, which they have likewise taken) kept from mee. Sir, you knowe mee better then any Englishman does; but that you maye a little better, I solemnly (upon the saythe of a Christian) not onely prosesse a disaprovment, but an absolute ignorance, of any designe or plott, that was afoote. To you I protest this, in the presence of Allmighty God; yet shall not move you to the procurement of my perfect liberty, but to send mee an order from the protector, that I maye upon my paroll (or if that will not be taken) upon givinge security here to do it, render myselfe there to him, to answere any accusation that shall come against mee. Sir, I thinke this a very reasonable petition, and as reasonable, that ('till I appeare guilty) my horses and goods be, by the same command that fetches mee thither, restored to mee. My horses I shall bringe under mee, to tender with my selfe, to be disposed as I shall appear guilty, or not; the latter of the too I am sure, upon tryall, to be found, and have some confidence, that when I am upon that place, I shall be able to doe you some more service. If I have ever done any, let it be considered in the gaininge of this suite I nowe make, the expedition of which I presse for nothinge more then to be eased of that needles expence is by this occasion drawen upon,
County of Chester.
These are to certify all whom this may concern, that Robert Werden, of Burton, in the county of Chester, esq; came before us, whose names are subscribed, commissioners of the militia for the county of Chester, and voluntarily entered into recognizance, to the use of his highness the lord protector of the commonwealth of England, Scotland, and Ireland, and the dominions thereunto belonging, in the sum of one thousand pounds, not to act any thing prejudicial to the present government, or to be privy or consenting thereunto, and to be with his horses and arms, in a schedule delivered unto us, forth-coming, when required. These are therefore to desire all whom these may concern, to suffer the said Robert Werden to pass with his servants and horses peaceably and quietly upon their lawful occasions, without let or molestation. Given under our hands at Norwich, the 26th day of March, 1655.
The deputy, assistants, and fellowship of merchants adventurers of England, residing at Hamburgh, to the governor and assistants of the company of merchant adventurers trading to Hamburg.
Right worshipful sir and sirs,
Yesterday, at a general court and ample convention, we heard your worship's letter of the 9th of March past, published unto us, the contents whereof led us to such a brotherly compliance with your counsells, that laying aside all farther disputes, we presently proceeded to the settlement of our government, which we effected orderly and unanimously, with a general satisfaction. Being a court, it gave occasion for the publication of several former letters from your worships, according to your direction; amongst the rest your letter of the 22d of December, which you are pleased to referr unto your forementioned of the 9th of March, was read unto us, and had its due respect.
The government being thus peaceably settled, we will suppose it matter enough for our first advice, as being a fair introduction of our wonted orderly correspondence, so long and so unhappily interrupted. Our next shall give your worships an account of such other particulars, as your letters and the publick concernments of the fellowship shall require from us. So committing you to the protection of the Almighty, we rest,
A letter of intelligence from mr. Manning to secretary Thurloe.
Since I received your letters I have wrott two to you, one dated the 2d instant, the other the 10th, and therein gave you as good an accompt as I could in that hast and hurrie I was in att that time. If I have bin too briefe in any thing, and not exact, you must impute itt to the reason of my not receiving your commands, and more especially the cipher, an unsuspicionable addresse unto you, as also some bills for money. Sir, I assure you, it is my earnest desire to serve you, and if you thinke I may be useful, and as I have dealt frankely with you, and really runn much hazard in doeing it, I begg the favoure, that you would deale as freely with me without faile by the next post; for I have made an excuse to the king, to come and attend this way on some busines that concerns me for 8 or 10 dayes; and longer I cannot stay, being of an old sayeing, between two stooles there is noe depending; and for every letter I write to you, I run a hazard of being ruined, for want of the cipher and address; besides, to indeavour an avoiding of itt, I have bin att the charge of sending purposely a servant nere 30 leagues a time, to put my letters into the male. Sir, I shall not hold you longer in this discourse, only tell you, according to your promisse, I expect to be noe loser; and in pursuance of that, which I have assured you of, I assure you, I will most faithfully, effectively, and most considerably serve you, if you thinke fitt to command me, and I will not saile doeing itt what way you shall appointe. If foe be you would conferre with me yourself in London, send me a passe in any name as a marchant, I will finde some business to be emploied by the king in, and under that pretence come to you in a short time; but I must have foe much time as to speake with him first; or if you would have me conferre with any persone abroade, or that you may send over, I will, and give him that accompt, that I dare not committ to paper; and however, if you thinke I may serve you here, I will not saile to give you a just accompt weekely of all things, and shall leave myself for recompence wholy to yourself. Sir, I am thus tedious, being I would have you clearely understand me, and being I know not when I may have the same oportunity of writing, and shall desire you would not faile letting me have a full answer next post, but be sure you are cautious in writing; and now and then interlace some truthes of cavaliere newes; for letters are most times opened by some private enemies you have up and downe these countryes, and remember your name to be John Browne, and mine Manwaring, and lett your duplicate be directed to Bruges, as in my last I wrott; and another to me, to be left with mr. John Botler, marchant in Dunkirque. Sir, I once more intreate you not to saile, and foe proceed to newes, which, I pray, lett not be published in the pamphlets, being itt may cause a suspicion of some here about the king, and foe disinable the advance of your master's service. Sir, last fryday morning the king removed from out of his private quarter in Zealand, back to Colen, with Ormond, col. Blague, and two or three other servants with him. This I can assure you, for I parted with him att the boate, that was to carry him to Dort, which you may be assured of and relye on, notwithstanding all reports of his being in England, for he never was further then Zealand, and some ten or twelve that he used there in dispatches, only knew itt. Last post we had letters from my lord Wilmott, who is come backe to London, passeth for a Frenchman, and is in a yellow periwig. In my last I gave you a hinte, where he might be found, as also mr. Donald Oneile, from whome I had this day a letter from London. He goes by the name of Brian, and somtimes Roberts; but that, I presume, he hath left off, fine his escape from Dover. Remember what I have told you of, that Markhams of the Savoye, mr. John Denham, mr. Edward Progers, my lord Lumley, mr. Henry Seymour, sir Fred. Cornwallis, and all that gang of people, are the men that assist them in London as to making of escapes, helping to convey any that come thither to goe to other parts of the kingdome, and the like; and realy whatever it costs, you must endeavour the apprehending all those persons, that go to and fro to embroyle the nation, which is theire busines. Also I pray take notice, that there is one mr. Cressett, who liveth neere Salisbury house, who is very prompt to assist in these petty things. Sir, for your better remembrance, I will here give you the most considerable in this list, viz.
These are the principle envoyes and agents to draw the nation into combustion, but they are backed by many persons of quality; all which I leave to your consideration; but if you caused some kinde of proclamation to be made against them in perticular, as also a strickt search and care for theire apprehension, you would much startle the vigour of your enemyes; and this you may lett be taken notice of in some diurnall, but not lett the names and hints I give you of them be mentioned, but make use of that yourselfe; and take this notice, that I advise you, a vigilant care be had of the midland havens; for I assure you, the king's returne to Colen is but to amuse you, and not to leave this forner's action, of which I could tell you, he is not altogether unprovided of men and money abroad. Sir, I should write more perticulars, had I your cipher, which I begg by the next post, as also a pass, to lye dormant by me, to come over as occasion may serve as you think sitt. For what sume of money, I leave it to yourself but intreate something considerable, being of the vast expences I have bin at, and must continue it to doe you good service. I value not, whether itt be payable at Dunkirque, Bruges, or Antwerp; but lett a greate care be taken, that noe suspicion be given, from whence itt comes; as also write very darkely yourself; which stayeing purposely here for, I must intreate you not to saile the next post, that I may steere accordingly, being, sir,
A letter of intelligence.
Though I showld bee so unfortunat as not to be able to moove you out of any consideration of my owne perticular, to give mee one single returne of those many letters I have of late writ to you, yet I hope for your owne sake, and to ease yourselfe for the future, of receiving any farther trouble of this nature from mee, you will be pleased at least to let mee know your answer of what I have already writ to you, and whether it bee your desire I should write to you any more or noe. This is the 7th or 8th letter I have sent you without hearing any thing from you, though the substance of what I writ I did conceive would require haste, it being a proposition I made of coming, 19. 41. 16. 2. 30. 21. 6. 42. 22. 43. 31. 36. 12. 3. 26. 25. [symbol] S. 39. 37. 28. 36. 40. 41. 25. 37. that so I might bee able to doe your friend more service in the businesse that is now on foot, then it is possible for mee to doe at this distance. I consesse I tooke this to bee a proposition, against which there could bee noe objection, and would sufficiently testify the reallity of my intentions to serve him; but if I have beene mistaken, I hope you will not refuse mee the favour to let me know foe much, that I may noe longer remayne in an error, or bee ignorant of what your friend is resolved to doe with me. By the which you will lay a very greate obligation upon
Examinations touching the discovery of a plot, &c. taken before Thomas Lloyd, esq; high sheriff, Hugh Price, Thomas Niccolls, and Edward Allen, esqrs; justices of the peace of the county of Montgomery, April 3, 1655.
John Tomley of Colsrin, in the county of Montgomery, cardmaker, examined, faith, that upon monday, tuesday, wednesday, and thursday, the 8th of March, 1654, and the day before, this examinate was holding his father's plough, he being a very aged man; and this examinate faith, that he heard nothing of a plot, until after the same was discovered; and also faith, that he was not on horseback that night; and likewise faith, that he neither knew nor heard of any man on horseback that night, or at any other time tending towards any plot; and further is not demanded.
David ap Pugh, of Colfrin, in the said county of Montgomery, gent. being called before us the day aforesaid, being the second time after a week's imprisonment, to be examined upon oath, touching the discourse of the said plott, refused to be examined upon oath.
Depositions touching the discovery of a late plot intended against his highness the lord protector and the commonwealth, taken at Pool the 3d of April, 1655, before Thomas Lloyd, esq; high sheriff, Hugh Price, Edward Allen, and Thomas Niccolls, esqrs; justices of the peace of the said county.
Griffith Pugh, of Colfrin, in the county of Montgomery, gent. aged 31 years, or thereabouts, upon oath examined, deposeth, that he heard talk of a plot, but what day, or by whom, or what was said touching the said plot, this deponent knoweth not; and being demanded, whether he knew who stole his mother's mare, which one mr. Billinger took near unto Kanamunoch, upon thursday at night the 8th of March, 1654, faith, that if he should take his oath upon that, he should swear against himself, because this deponent heard it was reported, that this deponent rid off the said mare.
And being farther demanded, whether he saw or heard of any armed men abroad the said 8th of March at night, said, that he heard there were some abroad the said night, and one Edward Edwards told him the same. And being further demanded, whether he knew of his brother David Pugh to go forth the said night, faith, that he saw his brother David Pugh, John Tomley, the son of Richard Tomley, of Colfrin, of the said county, and Edward Penryn, son of Jeffery Penryn, of the said Colfrin, in his brother David's yard, about 2 or 3 hours within night of the said day, on horseback with swords, and all ride away; but being demanded, whither they went, said, he could not tell; and being further demanded, whether he did not ask them, whither they went, said, it was against himself to answer. And being further demanded, whether he heard, who had his mother's mare, said, he heard one mr. Billinger had her. And being further demanded, who rid the said mare when Billinger took her, refused to answer, and said it was against himself. And being further demanded, whether he saw the said Billinger the said night, refused to answer, and also said, that it was against himself. And being further demanded, whether he saw any more men on horseback that night, besides the aforementioned three men, refused to answer, likewise saying, that it was against himself; and further is not required to depose.
The examination of Randle Eyton, of Knolton, in the county of Flint, gent, taken before William Crowne, esq;
Who faith, that upon thursday morning last, he came from home to sir Thomas Harris's house about ten of the clock, where he found sir Thomas, one mr. White, and one mr. Moore, and no stranger else, and denieth that he knew of any arms; or ammunition there, or design whatsoever, tending to any rising to the disturbance of the peace of the commonwealth.
The examination of Elias Preston, of Wrexham, in the county of Denbigh, surgeon barber.
Who faith, that he came to sir Thomas Harris's house at Boreacton upon thursday last, where he found only sir Thomas Harris that he knew, and was not there above an hour and half before he was taken; and the occasion of his coming thither was, to view a fore leg of one Vaughan's, a servant of sir Thomas Harris's, for which purpose he had been several times sent to; and denieth that he had any knowledge of any plot against Shrewsbury, or that he carried any letters for sir Thomas Harris, or was ever sent of any message for him.
The examination of Thomas Jones, of Birchgroves, in the county of Salop, yeoman.
Who being asked, whether he were at sir Thomas Harris's house upon thursday last, he faith, that he thinketh he was there, but is not certain; and faith, that he was at Shrewsbury upon thursday last; and the occasion of his coming there was, to look after a pie, that was sent by him this examinate to sir George Harris's of London, brother of the said sir Thomas, and was lost in the carriage, which was before Christmas last, and then he came to one Charlton's and Farrian's in Mardall: denieth, that he knew of any plot or design in this country, or that sir Thomas Harris ever sent any letters by him to any person whatsoever.
The opinion of mr. attorney general Prideaux, and mr. Steele recorder, Whether the lord protector may not make a lease of the two parts of a recusant's estate, which are under sequestration for recusancy only?
The consul and senate of Zurich to the protector.
Serenissime ac celsissime domine protector, domine honore summo prosequende,
Generosus dominus Flemming olim apud nos residens Anglicanus, tempore suæ commorationis & magistratum & cives omni amicitiæ & amoris affectu prosecutus est, & vicissim tam publicè quàm privatim condignum honorem & benevolentiam omnium expertus est. Quam præfertim ei commonstrârunt nonnulla nostri & consiliarii & cives ipsi benevole inserviendo ædibus locatis, & rebus variis ad vitæ honestam sustentationem necessariis, nec non etiam numerata pecunia, prout rationes iterum probe ostendunt. Is quidem dictus dominus Flemming debitam persolutionem aliquoties iterato promisit, asserens se lubentissimè suis creditoribus satisfacere velle, quamprimum impetrare potuerit ea, quæ ipsi in Anglia deberentur. Cùm autem inter dictos nostros cives Johannes Jacobus & Johannes Hulricus Geffneri fratres, Georgii Gessneri piæ memoriæ hæredes, cui & conjunctim Felici Orellio etiam piè defuncto, dictus dominus Flemming fummam haud exiguam debet, ad eum inopiæ gradum nunc temporis redacti sint, ut nequeant ulteriorem moram sufferre; ac ea propter præfatus Hulricus Gessnerus in animum sibi induxerit, ipsemet Londinum proficisci, & prædicto domino Flemming rei fuæ angustiam, prout convenit, ante oculos ponere; cumque convenerint insuper singuli ejus creditores, & eidem Gessnero potestatem dederint, simul etiam eorum exposcendi debita, submissim & intensissimè nos rogantes velimus omnium nomine ad serenissimam celsitudinem vestram ipsum etiam intercessionalibus nostris comitari. Quarum æquam petitionem recufare nolentes bona cum serenissimæ celsitudinis vestræ venia, ei summo studio harum latorem commendamus, intercedentes qua par est observantia, ut à serenissima celsitudine vestra protectionem peregrino in justa causa sollicitanda necessariam, & favorem omnem ad omnia impedimenta, quæ ejus æquis postulatis & debitæ satisfactioni obstaculo erunt, removenda requisitum impetret.
Bordeaux to his son, the French embassador in England.
Just now I have received two of your packets, after which we did so much long, by reason the posts did not arrive upon their usual days, and that gave cause to pretend the rupture of your treaty, for the reasons mentioned in your letter of the 8th; and which did oblige me to leave Ruell, where I stayed a few days, to come to Paris, to solicit the council and his eminence to take off the seizure, which was laid upon the English ships, which was ordered, and sent to all the ports of France, before we were informed of the discontent of the council of England, the Hollanders having the like cause of complaint; so that if there be only that pretence to hinder the conclusion of your treaty, you will soon remove it. I saw his eminence yesterday at the Bois de Vincennes: he declared to me to have very little satisfaction in your conduct, and doth not believe, that you will be able to effect your treaty, since that the protector doth make scruple to explain roundly and clearly his intentions, by an article, whereof the sincerity ought to be the foundation, and especially to contract that particular amity, which I mentioned in my former. His eminence doth still declare to be very much desirous of peace, and this private union, so that although that you have order, and likewise an intention to break and return, I am still of the opinion of the earl of Brienne, that your delays of returning will not be useless; and since that with so much precaution they have taken off the seizure, which was laid upon the English ships, you may judge of the design of peace desired by us. The earl of Brienne told me last night, that the council had very much approved of the offers, which you had made to your commissioners, to sign out of hand the treaty of peace, without any other conditions or propositions; and that by their refusing and delaying, they did conceive here, that there was some treaty with Spain, the advantages being so great for the protector to agree with us, that unless he were not assured of an assistance and union from Spain, it were impossible for him to break with us. If so be there do happen a breach, his eminence told me the English would suffer more than we. We are here altogether in peace; our armies are quiet, and the Spaniards low and weak. The commissioners of Bretagne, Normandy, Poictou, and Biscay do sollicit here daily to have permission to arm against the English. They do promise to themselves a great number of ships to do their business, where it doth clearly appear; that the dispositions of the people here are for a war with England, being provoked thereunto by their continual losses.
A letter of intelligence from mr. Manning to secretary Thurloe.
I ONLY write this to give you notice, that I have writt three letters to you under cover to captain Manley, which if he sends not, I pray cause to be inquired after. I forgott to tell you, that one mr. Richard Nichols, a brother-in-law to mr. Fretswell, in St. Martin's Lane, is a servant of the duke of Yorke's, and his agent there, in all his business. Mr. Marmaduke Darcey, brother to the lord Darcey, is a person much trusted and valued; and att Chase's house, a pothecary in Coven-Garden, you may alwaies finde some of those I mention, and there's one Pile, a chirurgeon, that is employed. The most generall places for address of letters is thither; to Lee a linen draper on Ludgate-hill, to Jones, a girdler at Chancery-lane end, and to one Pickering, at the naked boy, nere Strand bridge. Sir, as I have dealt most freely and ingeniously with you, for as much as could with prudence be committed to paper, soe I expect and stay here purposely for those things I writt for, and your commands; and assure yourself, there is none more readily your's, nor shall doe more considerable services, then,
Capt. J. Griffiths to secretary Thurloe.
By my last I gave you an accompt of the unhappy escape of sir Richard Malleverer, for the retaking of whom neither charge nor paynes hath been wanting, although not successfull answerable to desire; only my friend, whom I sent post to York, hath apprehended one Ellis, who pretended to be a servant of his; but since upon examination (as I am informed by my friend) hath consessed himself to be captain lieutenant to sir Richard, and that he hath and is able to discover as much of the designe and the partyes therin concerned, as sir Richard himselfe could do; for that all his business therein was managed by this Ellis; an accompt whereof I doubt not you will receave from collonell Lilburne, unto whose custody my man delivered him. I have also sent two of his servants to the common goale, where they remayne at my charge, as there master and the rest did during theire stay, for they stayed not to call for a reckoning. I pray let mee knowe how you would have these two disposed of; they are meane inconsiderable persons. Yesterday I receaved a letter from colonel Ireland, grounded upon an express from his highness, for the apprehending of collonell Robert Werden, which accordingly I forthwith did, and committed him to the custody of captain Spillman, (captain lieutenant to my lord Lambert) who hath undertaken his security. He hath also seized mr. Thomas Smith, eldest son to sir Thomas Smith, and captain Edward Morgan of Gulgrian in Flintshire, all whom are kept 'till his highnes's farther pleasure be knowen. Our militia at present proceeds not at all in the county, and but slowly in the city, without which, or the continuance of some of the army with us, we may not yet expect ourselves to be safe; for although the army (by God's great mercy) be well abated, yet not calmed in the spirritts of many men, of whom I hope some exact account will be required, which is the desire of,
The examination of Francis Jones, taken the 4th of April 1655. [By secretary Thurloe.]
That he was beyond the feas this winter at Bologne, and went thither to put off four horses he carried from hence: that he met with the lord Gerard, one Bowers, and some other English gentlemen, but he had not much discourse with them, only Gerard said, that there was a design, and he perceived that Bowers had not long since fled from England for being in John Gerard's design, for which he was executed, and believes there was a real intention of executing that design.
That he was acquainted with the business in the beginning of the last parliament by Richard Pyle a chirurgeon, and which was agent for the king in the West; he faith, that this Pyle used to lodge at mr. Chace's an apothecary in Covent Garden, or at the sign of the four Fishes.
That three days before the rising, Pyle told him of the rendezvous, and that several gentlemen, as mr. Penruddock and others, would meet him, as they did, and also sir Joseph Wagstaff, who told him, that the marquiss of Hertford was engaged in it, and that the duke of York would also be in Cornwall, and said, that he and the lord Wilmott parted from him in France very lately, and that they came for England, and landed at Margetts, and that the duke of York went into Normandy. He told him also, as Pyle did before, that the levelling party in the army would also join in with them, and make disturbances in the army, and they were much troubled that Wyldman was taken.
That Pyle, after he saw there was no greater appearance, said, it was the baseness of those who had engaged themselves, and failed. That Pyle told him, that colonel Gardner was engaged: that he met Pyle at one Pyle's house in Wallop in Hampshire. That they did all expect the marquiss of Hertford very earnestly; and that Wagstaff said, he would meet them at Blandford, that the said Pyle was very much acquainted with one Read that is now in the Tower. That Pyle informed them, that a great party would rise in Kent, the North, and in Wales. Said, that Scotland and Ireland was to rise also at the same time.
That when he was in France, which was a little before Christmas last, there was the cardinal's regiment brought down thither; and it was reported there, that the French were to help the king to his crown; and the governor of Bollogne said, that he wished he were in England with 2000 such horse as his were.
Mr. George Marshall, warden of New-College Oxford, to the protector.
Since your highnes sent your messenger to mee, I writt to you an expresse, concerneing the messenger, that was to wait upon your highnesse from Hamburgh, which I doubt not but it has obteined your reception through my lady Disbrowe's meanes. My lord, haveing received some few more passages since the last from Hamburgh, concerning the same subject the former letters were of, from the same gentleman, I could not withold them from your highnes sight, they being the conclusion of a letter conteineing other matters. That which is of publique concernment I have herein inclosed sent unto your highnesse.
I have before the sealeing hereof mett with some more passages to the same purpose from the same gentleman to another friend, which I have transcribed, and herein inclosed sent to your highnesse.
Here hath litle of publicke concernement occurred since my last: Ch. St. cannot yet be discovered: the last news of him was, that about a fortnight since, he was seen goe to the water side to take shiping, intending, as he gave out, for England; but hearing nothing of him since, it is supposed his plott with you is soe throughly discovered, that he steeres his course some other way. Wilmott, with some others of his crew, about 14 in company, went since the discovery of the plott in a disguise through this towne, and took shipping in the Balticke-sea for England, where he certainly hath been arrived about a month, letters having been received from him thence by some here in Germany, however he conceales himself from being discovered. The levys by the princes of Germany and the circumjacent parts goe on apace, especially that of the Swede; and this day I was assured by a very intelligent man of great note, and much affected to his highness, that all the preparations of this empire were intended against the commonwealth of England, if their resolution be not altered, which is rather conceived to be onely deferred. The Swede, above all other princes in these parts, is most considerable, and is most deep of any of the rest (notwithstanding the pretended league) in his ingagments to C. S. They had hired 5 shippes in the Elve here, to carry souldiers from the Stiste of Breem, as they gave out, to Gottenburge; which all the world looked on but as a flam, having men and shipps enough of their owne nearer hand; but it too plainely appears now; for since the great discovery of the plott in England, they have turned off those shipps with halfe pay. One that has better reason to know than I am willing to commit to paper, assures me, that Richard Harrison and all that party had a hand in this plott, and made tearms with Charles Stewart, though with soe great privacy on both sides, that particulars cannot yet be proved. I forbear to repeat any thing of my last about the tithe of Wedington woods, having there fully stated that buisnesse. I take leave to subscribe myselfe,
Here are great preparations for war, and taking on of souldiers for Germany, Sweden and Denmark ; and while they have been pretending war with, and sending envoys one to another, I am assured from good hands, they have been combining and intending a confederacy against us. Sweden is deep as any of them: I have seen a copy, and had the translating of a congratulatory letter writ from the new king of Sweden to C. St. giving him all his titles as k. of England, Scotland, France, and Ireland. Koningsmark, the Swedes general before Breme, and an inveterate enemy to our nation, is raising in the Stiste of Breme a great army of horse and foot, which were certainly intended for England or Scotland, had not the discovery of the plot in England prevented them ; for I believe their intentions rather deserred than altered. Wilmot hath been in England some weeks, however disguised. Some eminent persons are in hold with you, as having a hand in this plot under disguised names, of which O Neal is one. I am assured from some near C. St. that Rich. Harrison, and all that party had been trucking with them, and obtained terms from C. St. though I cannot hear what they were. This plot hath been hatching ever since his escape from Worcester. The Swedes intend a very great fleet this summer, wherever it falls, and have many gallant ships lye ready in the Baltick-sea, whence they intend to set out. I like not that the French do nodd so in their treaty with us. Some intelligent men think France and Spain not to be soe irreconcileable as their great preparations against the next campaign would speak them to be; if they should close, the storm must fall somewhere. I verily believe there is no nation under heaven loves us cordially; yet if we are beloved of the God of heaven, I know we may do well ; and though the nations of the earth lay a confederacy, yet he that weighs them in the balance, turns the scales which way he pleases, who hath delivered, yea, who will deliver, if we have but faith to trust in him alone, and not in our selves.
Bordeaux, the French embassador in England, to cardinal Mazarin.
I HAVE received the two letters, which your eminence did me the honour to write to me, the one of the 3d, the other of the 10th. Your eminence will be pleased to give me leave to refer myself, for as much as concerneth the state of my negotiation, to the letter of the E. of Brienne. I shall also humbly beg of your eminence, before that you condemn me for having proposed the word presentement, to cast your eye upon what I did think fit to write unto you, to deface this impression which hath no ground, neither in my letters, nor in my discourse to the ministers of this state, nor likewise in the publick reports. And I should think I had forgot myself, if I should happen to take that term for an expedient; it did always appear to me for a restriction, which would alter the whole ; and when my commissioners did propose it at any time, I did reject it, giving them to understand the inconveniencies, which it would produce. I will confess however, that after a long contest upon that point, I entered into the overture, which they made me, to design the house of Austria and their adherents, or those who should be so hereafter, by favouring the interests, or depending on their party, under what pretence soever, upon condition that the article, in regard of the rebels, should remain in the terms which I had proposed; that if by accepting of this proviso, I have exceeded my orders, it was through a belief I had, that the king, by these expressions, might be assured, yea for the time to come, that the forces of England should not traverse his designs, after I had lost the hope, that this government would be brought to a nearer amity with France, prejudicial to the treaty made by the protector with other states; amongst others, the united provinces. I had considered the rebels otherwise than enemies, and when difficulty was made upon the obligation not to assist them, I did submit, after I had considered the inconveniences, which the restriction would produce at this present time, to pass the article as it was offered unto me, if there could be found an example in any other treaty. So likewise my commissioners did propose not to speak of rebels, but to name the prince and his adherents, as well now as hereafter: I did not agree to it; and since that the orders of his majesty do prescribe to insist upon the article in general terms, I shall not rest.
There is one thing more remaining, wherein I am to satisfy your eminence, and that is, that I propose expedients, and when my commissioners have accepted of them, that the next day I will not agree to them. It is true, this complaint was made by the secretary of state in two rencounters; the one, and the most considerable, did regard the article of the arbitrage, and the other the banishing of persons, whom I had named in my memorandum to be banished out of England.
The contest about this last point did proceed from a subtilty of the secretary of state, who pre-supposed, that I being reduced to the agents alone of the prince of Condé, I ought not to insist upon the two commissioners of Bourdeaux. I know they have endeavoured to draw some advantage from thence, but I do believe, that if your eminence will be pleased to call to mind all that hath passed upon those two subjects, there will not be much cause made to appear, whereby to reproach my conduct.
Bordeaux to count Brienne.
Ilet pass the last ordinary, without giving me the honor to write to you ; for having nothing to write to you but the continuation of the delay on the behalf of this state, under pretence of the general seizure made in France upon all the merchandize and ships of the English, my commissioners came themselves to me, to demand some satisfaction, and to receive information thereof, adding withal, that there should not be proceeded in the treaty any further. In the mean time I told them, that I had no advice of the said seizure, and did press my commissioners to give me a last resolution upon the difficulties which do hinder the accommodation at present; and I did take away all hope from them, that I would pass the clause, which doth regard the assistance of enemies and rebels, in other terms, than what was agreed upon. They told me, that they had no order to speak of that business, and that as soon as they should be informed of the truth and motives of the seizure, I should receive an answer. Since this conference, which ended in protestations, that it was not any longer in my power to suffer myself to be delayed, I let pass three days without following the business, believing that the letters from France would have dissipated the reports of the seizure, whereof nothing was writ me from Paris. And although that the news of the 8th of this month did not give me any further information, yet I sent the day before yesterday to my commissioners and the secretary of state, to demand a last resolution: not receiving it, I sent them word yesterday at night, that if to day it were not given me, I would write to the lord protector to have audience to take leave, or at least a pass. And as the letter of the 10th was delivered to me this morning, I sent to one of them to advertise him, that his majesty could not refuse his subjects the seizure of the English ships, but that no hurt should be done to the merchandize, and that all should remain entire, 'till such time as they should hear of our accommodation, which I had order to conclude or to retreat. He sent me word, that this day was designed for my business, and some few hours afterwards the lord Nieuport came to see me. I thought it was to make some new overture unto me, or to know whether I was in a real resolution to be gone ; but he remained upon general expressions of the desire, which as well himself as his superiors have, to see a happy end of my negotiation, insinuating unto me, that it would have been convenient, to have avoided our differences, not to have made any mention of rebels. He did also mention the seizure unto me, and told me, that the secretary of state had told him, that was the chief obstacle in the treaty, and a sign of the little disposition, which we had to the peace. It was no difficult thing for me to convince the said ambassador, that his majesty had not forgot any thing to establish the same between the two nations, and could not deny, upon the complaints of his subjects, the seizure of the English ships, 'till such time that the acts of hostility, which the English do exercise against them, do cease. And as for that of the rebels, he did only maintain his opinion upon the confidence, which we ought to have in the good faith of this government.
I read to him my letter, and he was presently satisfied, that I could not pass in silence the said rebels. I have nothing more to do, if all protestations, declarations, and persuasions will not prevail, but to take leave, and not to defer it any longer. I sent this night to the secretary of state; he presently sent word by my man, that the council had been together 'till past two in the afternoon upon that business, and that to morrow I should know their resolution. This discourse in moderate terms was followed by another of a different nature, and full of reproaches of the said seizure; of the preparations, which had been made in France to transport forces into England at the time of the late rising, particularizing, that the regiment of his eminence was sent upon that design towards the coast ; that the lord protector had certain advice, that the duke of York was to command them. And after they had compared our seizure to that, which was made in Denmark at the beginning of the war with the states general, and as we had begun the disorders and depredations, so we would begin the war, he made an end in saying, that he did wonder, that I would pretend protection in England, and that to morrow I should have news. This ill humour came to be provoked through the complaints of the merchants trading into France, to whom he had offered permission to seize the effects of the French merchants, which they have refused, desiring rather, that the lord protector would desire and oblige me to write into France upon that subject. The said secretary promised them, that there should be care taken about it. I am also informed by another hand, that the dispute was high in the council, and the said seizure might be compared to the last remedies, which are used in desperate diseases. My negotiation did not seem to be in that condition; for all the information that hath been given me, and that conduct, which hath been used of late, hath declared, that they were disposed to an accommodation. To maintain their minds in the same disposition, I have lately sent to speak to my chief commissioners upon all that had been said by the secretary of state; and it may be, this present may inform his majesty of the resolution which hath been taken upon the complaint of the merchants, and upon my instances for the conclusion of the treaty.
The examination of Robert Werden, esq; taken at Prudshome, April 5, 1655.
This examinate faith, that he knoweth one Hallfall, a little black man, who was one that was apprehended for the death of Ascham, agent in Spain; but that he saw him not in England these many years, but about two years agone he saw the said Hallfall at the Hague in Holland.
And being farther examined faith, that he knoweth not any man that went under the name of Moore, or any other man whose name was Hallfall. Neither ever had any conversation or discourse either with mr. Warburton of Arley, or with colonel John Booth, concerning the late insurrections; neither hath he had any meetings with any the aforesaid persons or any other person whatsoever in order thereunto; neither did ever any thing occasionally pass concerning the same, either with the said persons, or any other persons whatsoever.
He farther faith, that being at Vale-Royal, at mr. Cholmley's, at dinner, about a month agone, he saw colonel Booth, who came in by accident, as he conceiveth, and dined with them, but there did not any discourse pass between him and the said colonel Booth, or with any other person, about the late insurrections; and further faith not.
The examination of Richard Parkes, barber in Ashford, taken April 5, 1655.
He faith, that about December last, a tall black man, with a long visage, about thirty years of age, as he judged him to be (but little or no hair on his face) in a grey suit trim'd with black ribbons, and a large dark stuff coat, called by the name of mr. Stone, who came newly out of France, as he understood, came to his master's, colonel Thornhill's house at Alingtrey in Kent, and staid there all night; and in the morning bringing up water, found one mr. Rosse in the chamber with mr. Stone, and as he was near the door, heard Stone say to Rosse in a low voice, that the rising here should be in March, and that it was so concluded in France. Being further asked, what mr. Rosse was, and how long he had been at the said house, the examinate saith, he called himself a Londoner, and had been there two days before, and that he judged him a great schollar, for that he heard him speak Latin, Greek, and other languages, besides Dutch and French. And further saith not.