The Diary of Thomas Burton: 1 February 1657-8

Pages 404-406

Diary of Thomas Burton Esq: Volume 2, April 1657 - February 1658. Originally published by H Colburn, London, 1828.

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Monday, February 1, 1657–8.

Mr. Darley reported from the Committee about the Journal books and Records of this House, that the order of the 26th January was short, for want of the words "Acts and Ordinances," without which Mr. Scobell (fn. 1) would not deliver the Acts and Ordinances, they being public Records of the nation, and not the Records of this or that House.

Mr. Scot seconded the motion.

It was thereupon resolved (nemine contradicente) that the words Acts and Ordinances be added, and that the boarded House within the Court of Requests, and the room thereto adjoining, towards the Inner-court of Wards, be the place to keep those Records in. (fn. 2)

Colonel Gorges. I move that, because the House is thin, you would call in a prisoner, at the door.

He was called in accordingly; but, in regard the paper of charge against him could not be found, after the fellow had sat a good while on his knees, he was commanded to withdraw, and attend his call.

Mr. Speaker acquainted the House, that the order of the day was double. First to call the House, and then to resume the debate adjourned on Saturday. The order of the day was read accordingly.

The House was called over, and T. B. appeared at the first call; C. L. (fn. 3) not till the second call. There were many absent, and near about fourteen dead since last session. (See note of them infra. (fn. 4) )

A petition was offered in Mr. Bampfield's behalf, that he might be dispensed with, in regard of the oath, which he was not free to take, and whatever was not of faith was sin.

Mr. Gewen moved it.

Mr. St. Nicholas seconded him, and said he was to move for another, (it seems but three in all, viz. Mr. Godfrey, Bampfield, and —. (fn. 5)

It was suspended till the second call, but I suppose nothing will be done in it, in regard nothing can dissolve an Act of Parliament, but an Act of Parliament.

Alderman Foot. There are three members of the city, viz. Brown, Adams, and —, (fn. 6) that would willingly attend, if you would declare that the penalty extends only to future Parliaments.

Mr. Speaker so agreed. (Query, if his declaration be satisfactory.)

It was moved, that by the orders of the House in case of double returns, none shall sit till it was determined by the House. After half an hour's debate this was assented unto, and divers members withdrew upon it, viz. Captain Baynes, Mr. Maidstone, and Colonel Briscoe. Ordered, that a note of those members be set upon the door. Query, their names.

Mem. See Journals for what was done more, (fn. 7) for I went out at twelve; nor could I attend any Committees, for I was engaged upon other business.


  • 1. Who had been appointed Clerk to "the other House."
  • 2. "For the laying-up and keeping of the journal-hooks, records, acts; ordinances, and writings, belonging to this House, which are to be delivered by Mr. Scobell to the Clerk of this House." Journals.
  • 3. T. B. was probably Thomas Barton, whom I suppose (supra, p. 159, note †) to have been the writer of this Diary. C. L. might design the other member for Westmoreland, Christopher Lister.
  • 4. No such note now appears.
  • 5. Blank in MS.
  • 6. Another blank. Biddulph and Jones appear, in Parl. Hist. and. 10., as members for London, besides the Aldermen Foot and Pack.
  • 7. "Resolved, that an Order be sent to the several sheriffs of the several counties, to summon the several members that are absent and have this day made default, to give their respective attendance in the House. "Resolved, that the time for the members that are returned to serve for Ireland to attend by, be six weeks from this day: for Scotland one month: for any of the counties of or places within England, and beyond the river of Trent, or for the counties of Devon and Cornwall, or for Wales, three weeks: for any other counties or places within England, and within eighty miles distant from London, fourteen days: within fifty miles distance, eight days." Journals.