Calendar of State Papers Domestic: William and Mary, 1691-2. Originally published by Her Majesty's Stationery Office, London, 1900.
This free content was digitised by double rekeying. All rights reserved.
The last volume of the Calendar of State Papers Domestic for the reign of William and Mary closed shortly after the King's return from the Continent in October 1691. He remained in England until the 5th of March 1692.
Under the date 1st November 1691, we learn of their Majesties' entertainment in the City, which was "very splendid and magnificent," but might have been marred by a dispute as to precedence between the King's Guard and the City Artillery. Happily, however, "they only worded it" and "the redcoats" followed the King (p. 1).
We learn singularly little that relates personally to King William or Queen Mary during this time, and little as to the circumstances of the King's journey abroad in the Spring of 1692; we do not even find any directions as to an escort of ships. The only indications of the management of home affairs being once more largely in the hands of William's excellent Consort, are such phrases as these occurring in official letters; "I am commanded of the Queen," "the Queen desires," and so forth.
The letters addressed by the various military commanders to King William, both whilst he was in England, and whilst he was with the Army abroad, give a very detailed account of the progress of the campaign and will be found, as before, in the collection known as King William's Chest; they have only been briefly mentioned in the present Calendar, as they will be, in due course, dealt with in the Calendar of Foreign State Papers; but a few words may be here appropriately said about some of them.
On the whole the Continental Campaign was certainly unfavourable to the Allies, and, as certainly, the dissensions and jealousies existing between the different commanders must have told largely against success. A detailed list of the losses in the English ranks, both in killed and wounded, at the Battle of Steinkirk or Enghien is given at page 429. The battle itself is described in two newsletters to Sir Joseph Williamson (pp. 392 and 401–2). The fall of Namur is mentioned at page 352, and the progress of the sieges of Charleroi and Mons may be closely followed, as may be the movements of the Duke of Savoy in Piedmont, and the war in the east of Europe; the failure of the negociations for a peace with Turkey was, the Prince of Waldeck considered, due to the influence of French money (p. 6).
The appointment of the Elector of Bavaria, as Governor of the Low Countries was warmly advocated by King William, for the consensus of opinion amongst the Allies seems to have been that, as long the Marquis de Castanaga directed affairs there, little could be done to bring the campaign to a successful issue. The Elector of Bavaria, writing to King William on the 27th of February, refers to the circumstances, which up to that time had hindered him from entering upon his duties as Governor (pp. 152–3).
The Pope was not an uninterested spectator of the war which was harassing Europe. In a letter from Count Windisgratz, who represented the Emperor, to King William, the writer communicated the Pope's sentiments: "His Holiness no longer regards with indifference the war, that is wrecking the peace of Europe, but is most anxious to bring about a universal peace, and to that end intends to send Nuncios-Extraordinary to the courts of the Emperor, Spain, and France. If this universal peace cannot be brought about, he would endeavour to obtain peace in Italy." He also refers to the peace with Turkey (p. 89).
With regard to the policy of Denmark, we find on the 15th of December 1691. Lord Sydney stating that King William was "desirous to testify his sincere desire for a good correspondence between the two crowns," and had charged his Ambassador at the Hague to communicate to the States a Danish memorial for the free navigation of the North Sea (p. 432). Sweden, so our Ambassador there thought in the early Spring of 1692, would, in conjunction with France, "do its utmost for an immediate peace" (p. 209). In the Autumn of 1692 we seem to have given assistance in the shape of arms and ammunition to the Tripolins who had declared war against France (pp. 403, 414 and 488).
But to resume our remarks upon references in the present Calendar to King William's movements after his departure from England in the Spring of 1692. We hear of him at Loo in April (p. 245), and the following month he sent for the Earl of Portland to come to him in Flanders; particulars as to the state of the army in England, prepared by the Duke of Leinster, were to be taken to him on that occasion (p. 284). The speedy close of the year's campaign was no doubt anticipated in September, after the Battle of Steinkirk (p. 451), but King William did not reach the Hague, on his way to England, till the beginning of October. Here he settled plans for the States' share in next year's campaign (p. 478) and was on the eve of starting for England—the Guards had already gone to Margate and to Harwich to escort him to London from whichever place he might land (p. 476)— when the unexpected activity of the French at and around Charleroi, and no doubt the change in our plans for the attack on France induced his hasty return into Flanders (p. 479). Warned, however, by his ministers in this country, of the need of his presence here, he did not tarry long abroad and having given—at a Council of War held in Brussels—directions in regard to Charleroi, returned to the Hague and thence to England, anchoring off Yarmouth, to which place men-of-war under Sir Cloudesley Shovell had convoyed him, on the morning of the 17th of October (p. 484). His actual place of landing is not mentioned, but the Queen left London on the morning of the 20th and met him at Ingatestone where they dined, and afterwards came on to Kensington (p. 485). Sir Joseph Williamson's correspondent describes the manifestations of London's joy at his return: bonfires, illumination, and the like (ibid.).
But it is doubtful if William himself felt particularly cheerful at the thought of meeting Parliament, or whether he regarded fire-work displays as any real indication of satisfaction with himself and his policy. He can hardly have done so, for the letters to him, calendared in the present volume, written by Lord Carmarthen, Lord Godolphin, and others, had told him pretty plainly, that the majority of the people of England—if that majority was not altogether ready to welcome back the exiled King— was at least dissatisfied with much that had been done at home, and still more with what had been done abroad.
The costly failure of the Allies' military operations has been already referred to, so we may now consider the progress of affairs at home after King William's departure That the Jacobites were active, the various plots—as to the detection of which and the arrest of suspected persons, much will be found in the present Calendar—clearly revealed; and the great naval expedition against England, which culminated in the defeat at La Hogue, was no doubt largely undertaken upon the supposition that our Navy was strongly attached to King James' interests. We hear of this "descent" at the end of April (p. 260), and a letter to Sir Joseph Williamson, dated the 19th of May, records the arrival, that morning, of news by express from Weymouth, that the French fleet had been descried off the Dorsetshire coast on the previous morning at seven o'clock sailing eastwards, whilst from Portsmouth had come news that Admiral Russell had left; "so" says the writer "the two fleets must, by this time, be very near one another." As a matter of fact at the time Williamson's correspondent was writing to him, the battle of La Hogue had been fought, and had ended in a complete victory for the English fleet.
News of the victory reached London on May the 21st and was at once communicated to the Lord Mayor by Lord Nottingham, who stated that, though no details were to hand, the tidings were "enough to make your Lordship's, and every Englishman's heart rejoice" (p. 291). News of the French defeat was at once sent to King William, the bearers of it being specially commended by the Queen to the Mayor of Harwich, who was to procure them a vessel "with all speed" to cross to Holland. The same day, we hear of rejoicings in London "for the great and good news"; guns were fired from the Tower, and the building was decked with flags (p. 293). Further tidings must have reached the Queen and her ministers during the day, for there is an order of the same date, stating that our fleet had beaten the French and was "following" them. But caution was not forgotten in the exultation over victory; following the French might take our ships so far to the west that they might take advantage of the clearness of the Channel to attempt their threatened descent. That being so, the Queen had ordered her ships in the Downs to St. Helens, and, joining with those already there, to sail towards France and cruise between Havre and Cape La Hogue; "this," added the despatch "is a service of the utmost importance" (p. 294). On the evening of the 22nd, a cruiser came into Cowes and brought news, that the French fleet of forty sail had divided, and was making towards France with our fleet in hot pursuit. Disabled French ships were still drifting about in the channel. On the 23rd, a tender from one of the English vessels, brought in news of the "burning and blowing up" of four of the French "three deckers" (p. 295).
As time went on the completeness of the victory became more certain. On the 26th of May, Williamson's correspondent writes from Whitehall the substance of the news brought by an express from Admiral Russell; he had burnt twelve of the French ships in the Bay of La Hogue, and, says the writer, "We reckon that they have lost in all about twenty of their biggest ships, and we hope to hear of the destruction of several more" (p. 300). After pursuing the French most of the fleet returned to St. Helens, though about thirty sail under Sir John Ashby remained off Havre, into which port some of the fugitive French ships had entered, whilst their smaller vessels made for Brest. In the battle the French force was sixty odd sail, ours under fifty. The French had not notice of ours being joined by the Dutch, till it was too late to avoid fighting (p. 303). It is interesting to learn that on board the French ships were many of our own sailors, who had been taken prisoners by the French. The victory caused considerable consternation in the French army fighting against the Allies (p. 307).
Admiral Russell's own account of the battle, contained in a letter to the Earl of Nottingham, was printed and circulated. It was not dated till June 2nd and on that day we find a letter from the Admiral to the King himself, in which he assures his Majesty that his not having written to him sooner arose only from a desire to avoid giving needless trouble, as the writer was well assured that Lord Nottingham had conveyed full particulars. Russell concludes "It pleased God to give success to your Naval forces, and, if your Majesty is pleased to believe that I have not been wanting for my endeavour to perform what may conduce most to your service, I shall have in that thought all the joy and satisfaction imaginable" (p. 309).
Unquestionably the victory at La Hogue raised for a moment the waning popularity of King William's government in England, and speedy advantage of the fact was taken by the King's ministers to re-fill the drained exchequer of the kingdom. On the 26th of May the Lords of the Council went to the City to ask the loan of 100,000l., which was readily granted upon the "good news " (p. 300).
But the advantages of victory were not followed up with sufficient energy to satisfy the public. It is clear that what the English people desired to see undertaken was an invasion of France from the sea coast, and it is also clear that such a project was in the mind of the government long before the victory of La Hogue; but it is not certain when, in the documents now calendared, we first meet with reference to active preparations for this descent upon France, for many of the allusions to special preparations—such for instance as the precautions taken for the defence of the Channel Islands—may only refer to measures adopted in answer to the preparations which France was making for the naval demonstration which ended in the battle of La Hogue. We have, however, a reference to our "descent" by name, in Lord Godolphin's letter to the King on the 15th of April: "the directions" he says "are now all given for the charge of the descent." The transport-ships would require, in ready money, at least 20,000l., and the Victuallers, for the provisions, about 25,000l. The Ordnance, according to their estimate " agreed to beg your Majesty at your going away," about 123,000l., exclusive of the further demands made by the Duke of Leinster "upon that article" (p. 238). So that the descent upon France was actually settled before William's departure, though the scheme had been since elaborated by the Duke of Leinster, to whose command the project was entrusted. Again on the 22nd of April, we find Lord Nottingham in correspondence with the Treasury, as to the pay of those to be employed "in the service of the descent" (p. 251). The train of Artillery was to leave London [the Tower ?] on the 7th of May for Portsmouth (p. 270).
If lack of money had been the cause of delay in making our "descent" upon France, that cause was, as we have seen, to a great extent removed by the loan which the government obtained after La Hogue, and the state of the, at least partially, replenished exchequer would now permit of the blow being immediately struck. But it was not immediately struck; and there is something in the tone of a letter from Lord Carmarthen to the King, written on the 14th of June, which almost suggests that William was not himself a particularly warm advocate for it. Lord Carmarthen tells the King that the descent is a subject "of the greatest importance that can ever happen, both in relation to your person, your government, and the future happiness of this kingdom" and he says " I find it in everybody's expectation to have something more done, in pursuance of your late victory at sea, the opportunities for it seeming to be so very obvious." The Cabinet, too, was as a whole, unanimous, and the prospects of success so good that, so Lord Carmarthen urged, Parliament would never forgive the neglect of such an opportunity. Seven or eight thousand men from those with the King on the Continent, would, the writer considered, be needed, and he hoped his Majesty would spare these. Admiral Russell was an equally warm supporter of the project, and continues Lord Carmarthen " we seemed to be so inflamed upon it, in the Cabinet, that most of us have offered the Queen to give our personal security to borrow what money shall be necessary for this expedition." Certainly this was pretty strong proof of the sincerity of the Cabinet's opinion (p. 326).
At length arrangements for the embarkation of the troops at Portsmouth were issued on the 30th of June (p. 343) and the 1st of July (p. 345). The Duke of Leinster remained in London, ready to go to Portsmouth to take up his command, so soon as all the troops were embarked (p. 383). Once more testimony was borne to the popularity of the expedition, this time by Lord Godolphin, who, on the 13th of July, wrote to King William that the English people would "never repine at any charge of invading France" (p. 366).
In France itself, our proposed descent undoubtedly created considerable uneasiness, an uneasiness which was naturally increased by the defeat suffered by the French fleet at La Hogue. The fortification of French coast towns and ports was pressed on with the utmost vigour. It was evidently expected that our attack would be delivered against St. Malo or Brest, and Lord Carmarthen, writing on the 14th of July, considers the measures taken for the defence of these places would render our success, if we attacked them, exceedingly doubtful. He therefore advocated delivering our attack upon Dunkirk. He had mentioned the suggestion only to the Queen, and she had given him leave to name it to the King, who, if it was to be done, must give his orders immediately "and with greater privacy than to the whole Cabinet at first," for the writer was assured that his Majesty was not served there with "perfect secrecy" (p. 369).
On the evening of the 15th of July, the Duke of Leinster and Lord Galway (fn. 1) left for Portsmouth and the expedition sailed on, or about, the 27th (p. 384), as Sir Joseph Williamson's correspondent, writing on the 28th, says that on the previous day it had left St. Helens and sailed westwards in about two hundred transport ships, convoyed by fourteen men-of-war. Admiral Russell was to meet the expedition (p. 388). This he no doubt did, and a council of war was immediately held with the result that the expedition returned to St. Helens "to expect further orders."
The Lord President, Lord Chamberlain and Lords Howard, Nottingham, Rochester, and Sydney left town early on the 2nd of August for Portsmouth, in order to go next morning to the fleet and join in deliberations with the Duke of Leinster and Admiral Russell as to "a final resolution" (p. 394). That resolution seems to have been to proceed, as on the 6th of August Williamson's correspondent tells him that the forces would sail "to-day at farthest" except certain regiments, which were to be put on shore again at Portsmouth (p. 399).
So the expedition started again to make the descent, numerically somewhat weaker than before. What, if any, fresh orders from the King had reached St. Helens we do not know, but instead of making westwards, as before, the transport ships now sailed eastwards for the Downs (p. 402). Soon after this Sir John Ashby's squadron, which had been to the westward, returned to St. Helens after actually effecting a landing on French soil, where the invading force "drove all before them, took some cattle," and then, apparently, returned to the ships (p. 403). On the 19th of August we learn that Colonel Withers had reached London from the King, who was between Ghent and Bruges and marching towards Ypres with the design of attacking Dunkirk. As Withers passed through the Downs, he left orders for the forces to sail to Ostend (p. 416).
It would seem therefore that Lord Carmarthen's suggestion commended itself to King William and was seized upon now that the original scheme of the descent had failed. It should, however, be noticed that the expedition was not to make for Dunkirk direct and attack it—the absence of the main body of the fleet would preclude the possibility of such a design succeeding—but was to land at Ostend and approach Dunkirk by land.
News of the actual arrival of the troops at Ostend is contained in a letter dated the 27th of August (p. 423); they had arrived there on the 22nd (p. 426) and would be joined by the forces, nearly 10,000 strong, mostly English and Scottish under Lieutenant-General Talmash, which had been sent by the King to make a demonstration, on the French frontier near Dunkirk.
On landing, the troops marched to Marieburg, four miles from Ostend in the direction of Niewport, where the force under Talmash joined them. A conference was held at which the Earl of Portland was present and after that our forces marched on towards Niewport, some of the troops possessing themselves of Furnes, which confirmed the belief that our efforts were directed against Dunkirk (p. 427). On the 5th of September, it was definitely known that Dunkirk was to be bombarded from the land, whilst a squadron of the fleet was to attack it by sea (p. 435).
But like the attack projected against the coast of France, that on Dunkirk from land had also to be abandoned. Sir Joseph Williamson's correspondent writes on the 12th of September, "it seems the design upon Dunkirk meets with unexpected difficulties, and those so great, that they have not thought fit to proceed upon it farther than to bombard it by sea." The forces, which were at Furnes were, therefore, marched to Dixmude of which place they possessed themselves on the 7th and were fortifying it; "they tell us" adds the same letter "that something else will be attempted, but what, is not yet known" (pp. 445—447). By the 15th of September we hear of the expedition still fortifying Dixmude, the Duke of Leinster being near, and Count de Noyelles at Furnes (p. 454). A letter to Williamson dated the 1st of October contained news, that the force was still at Dixmude, Count de Storme having one Scotch and five Dutch regiments to relieve the like number of English regiments. The Duke of Leinster had sent his baggage to Ostend and would shortly follow with his forces for England (p. 468).
Thus we see approaching the end of the costly and elaborately planned "descent" upon France, but the actual end of it was not yet, and it was not reached without disaster; in a terrific gale some of our fire-ships, presumably waiting at, or near, Ostend, were cast away and wrecked near Dunkirk (p. 471) and after the embarkation of the force, the ships bringing it back to England, were scattered by the tempestuous weather (p. 484).
If William resisted the temptation of employing the troops sent for the descent on the ordinary business of the Continental war, it was not from lack of pressure from the Allies. The movements of the French towards Charleroi, of which mention has already been made in this Preface, caused the Elector of Bavaria to press most urgently for the use of the force with the Duke of Leinster (p. 471). But King William was not disposed to grant the request, and the Elector then begged that, at least, the departure from Ostend of the troops for the descent might be delayed (p. 474), and in this request he was again unsuccessful.
The King himself on returning to England would have to face Parliament at no distant date, and he, no doubt, hesitated to add to the unpopularity of himself and his advisers—an unpopularity which would certainly be augmented by the failure of the descent—by employing the troops destined for the invasion of France from the sea-coast, an evidently popular project, in the ordinary conduct of the continental campaign, which, as we have seen, was growing yearly more and more unpopular in England.
But before considering the evidence—which is exceedingly meagre—afforded by the Calendar as to events happening in this country on and after King William's return, attention may be directed to the particulars contained in the volume as to Scotland and Ireland.
Amongst the Scotch papers, we have, in an undated document placed with those for 1691, a description, given by Lord Tarbat, of the state of the Highlands, of the expedition that had been made against the Highlanders during the year, and of the negotiations with them (pp. 60—63).
Considerable difference of opinion evidently existed between King William's representatives in Scotland as to the terms on which peace with the Highlanders should be established. The High Commissioner, says Tarbat, "inclines for treaty, seeing the vast expense of such campaigns, and how little they effect in reducing any clan, whilst your peaceable subjects are ruined." There is, he continues, "one thing all the clans desire," which "is as much for your advantage as theirs;" that all superiorities be bought from the Highland lords, "so that they [the smaller landowners] may hold their estates immediately of you." Having them the King's "immediate vassals," and having a governor at Lochaber who was "no highlander," would, said Tarbat, make King William, master of the Highlands "as much as ever King of Scotland was." Interesting descriptions of particular individuals and their power follow.
A curious memorandum as to the condition of Scotland, and the measures requisite for its settlement, will be found in the calendar next to the document just mentioned; the author's views do not agree with Lord Tarbat's (p. 68).
But the chief interest in the Scotch papers now calendared is in the evidence they afford as to the famous Massacre of Glencoe perpetrated by King William's troops at the outset of the year 1692; and it is desirable that a careful attention be given to the various documents bearing on the subject printed in the present volume.
Although, by royal proclamation, Highlanders loyal to King James had been allowed to the 31st of December 1691, to make their submission, it was, presumably, well known to the authorities in Scotland that all would not do so; and, as a consequence, we find King William directing active measures against the obstinate a fortnight before the given time for submission. On the 15th of December those in command at various garrisons are directed to reinforce Colonel Hill at Inverlochy or Fort William, and the garrison at Inverness (p. 33).
Less than a month later, on the 11th January 1692, King William addresses the Privy Council of Scotland: the utmost of mercy, gentleness, and compassion" had, he says, been shewn to the Highlanders, many of whom stood convicted as traitors, yet "all of them" had refused "the favourable and advantageous offers we made them," and "several of their chieftains and many of their clans" had not taken the proferred indemnity; against such his Majesty deemed it expedient "to apply the necessary severities of law;" an army under Sir Thomas Levingston would therefore be sent into the Highlands "to cut off these obstinate rebels by all manner of hostility" (p. 94). The words are important in connection with the usually received statements as to the general submission of the Highlanders in compliance with the Proclamation, and as to MacIan, chief of the Macdonalds of Glencoe, being the only chieftain whose promise to live peaceably had been withheld.
It was not merely a war, in the ordinary sense of the word, that was to be waged against the refractory Highlanders, but a complete extermination by means of an armed force. In his letter to the Scotch Privy Council, the King continues "and because these rebels, to avoid our forces, may withdraw themselves, their families, goods, or cattle, to lurk, or be concealed amongst their neighbours, we require and authorize you to emit a proclamation," to be published at all the market crosses in shires adjacent to the residences of rebels, forbidding "upon the highest penalty the law allows" any communication with them.
Under the same date as this letter to the Privy Council we find the King's instructions for Sir Thomas Levingston who was to command the expedition. They are explicit: he is to act against "these Highland rebels, who have not taken the benefit of our indemnity," by "fire and sword and all manner of hostility; to burn their houses, seize and burn their cattle, plenishing, or clothes, and cut off the men."
Directions follow as to the employment of different regiments, power being given to Levingston to use his discretion in such matters, and as to giving terms and quarter. "But," continue the instructions, "we are so convinced of the necessity of severity, and that they [the obstinate Highlanders] cannot be reclaimed, that we will not allow you to give any other terms to chieftains, heritors, or leaders, but to be prisoners of war, whereby their lives are safe. But for all other things they must render in mercy and take the oath of allegiance." As to the "yeomen and commonalty," if these will take the oath, surrender their arms, and take new "tacks" of their possessions, they might have quarter and indemnity for their lives and fortunes (pp. 94–95).
The wording of these commands is not King William's; it is obviously penned by a Scotchman; but that the King was cognizant of the policy to be pursued and that he approved of it, is demonstrated by the fact that the instructions bear his signature.
Five days later, on the 16th of January, we have additional instructions signed by the King, for Levingston, the double" of which was also forwarded to Colonel Hill (pp. 101–102). These instructions commence by answering certain questions which the commander had evidently put to the King: Some of the "rebels" were to have leave to pass freely to the Netherlands; and the submission of Glengarry, and those with him, might be accepted on his taking the oath of allegiance, and delivering up the " House of Invergarry, " on which the clan would be safe as to their lives, but as to their estate, they must depend on " our mercy." If, however, the "house" could not be taken with artillery "at this season of the year, " Levingston was allowed to offer the chief indemnity for life and fortune upon the delivery of the house and arms and his taking the oath of allegiance. The letter concludes with this very important declaration of policy: " But it were much better that those, who have not taken the benefit of our indemnity on the terms and within the dyet preferred by our proclamation should be obliged to render upon mercy."
Then for the first time, we find specific mention of Glencoe: " If McKean (sic) of Glencoe, and that tribe, can well be separated from the rest, it will be a proper vindication of the public justice to extirpate that set of thieves."
Of the massacre itself, which took place almost a month after the date of these instructions, we have no record in the papers now calendared, but it had evidently been officially described by Colonel Hill in a letter to the Earl of Portland; that letter is, unfortunately, not preserved, and the next allusion to the tragedy is contained in a later communication from Colonel Hill, also to the Earl of Portland, dated from Port William, on the 28th of February. "My last" he writes "gave you an account of the houses of Invergarry and Island Donan being in the possession of the King, and of the ruin of Glencoe." That the extirpation of the luckless inhabitants of the glen had not been as complete as was intended is evidenced by the following passage in the letter:
"Those men of Glencoe that (by help of the storm) escaped, would submit to mercy, if their lives may be granted them, upon giving security to live peaceably under government, and not to rob, steal, or receive stolen goods hereafter; and I humbly conceive (since there are enough killed for an example and to vindicate justice), it were advisable so to receive them. At the present day they lie dormant in caves and remote places " (pp. 153–154).
The story of the massacre, as it may be read in the papers now calendared, is of course incomplete, and there is singularly little illustrative of the action taken by the King and his ministers upon learning of the event, although we receive from the documents many illustrations of the condition of the Highlands and of Scotland generally; on the 18th of March, 1692 the King directs Colonel Hill to afford armed assistance to the Earl of Argyll in putting him in possession of his property "according to his legal rights," and one of the immediate effects of the drastic measures taken for this reduction of the country seems to have been a general exodus of the Scotchmen into Ireland (p. 182).
Under date of 20th of March 1692, Lord Melville gives a very detailed picture of the country after the so-called settlement had been effected by the winter campaign. Parliament had been adjourned, according to the King's command, and the adjournment had awakened much uneasiness. "I question not," writes Melville, "but you have had very weighty and good reasons for taking this step," for, he continues, "this poor country is at present in the most confused and distracted condition that a nation can be, not actually in war." The Jacobins" (fn. 2) were "numerous and barefaced," and the "common sort" of Presbyterians were distracted by false reports; the Army was without pay, yet it would be dangerous to disband it (pp. 186–188). A few days later the same writer continues his intelligence; he speaks of the danger to King William's party from the Countess-Dowager of Erroll, and the impropriety of keeping her a prisoner at Edinburgh, whence she had every opportunity of "driving on her intrigue." A rumour had reached him that the artillery, sent from England, was to be ordered back; he was alarmed at this news, as it was actually necessary that the castles should be kept fortified; it was hard to keep the unpaid army from mutiny. The writer then speaks plainly, and his words show that, though nominally defeated, the Jacobite party was by far the more influential: "the country may be in general divided into such who are, or profess to be, for your interest and government, and such who are for, or favourers of, King James. The last, as to the gentry and persons of interest, are the far greater number." Later on Lord Melville says "The great poverty of the country cannot be imagined by those who are not witnesses to it" and, "dissatisfied and disaffected men" make capital of the fact, laying it all at King William's door and they labour "to possess the people with the blackest things of your Majesty hell can invent" (pp. 200–204).
Under date "27th of April" comes another description from Lord Melville. He had received instructions from the King, and was carrying them out to the best of his ability; Parliament was again sitting, but King William's interests progressed slowly, as the "Jacobins" had joined the "Club" and "all the wit and malice of men, I may say of hell, seemed" set at work to do "mischief." There was an active correspondence between the adherents of King James in England, Ireland, and Scotland.
Something in King William's instructions, as to church matters, evidently did not quite satisfy Lord Melville. " I am," he says, "as little for the pragmaticalness of churchmen as any man in Britain; I think they often need a bridle. I look upon their work as relating to the souls of their people; that they are to use persuasion and no action." Yet, the writer considered, the King might well grant to the Scottish Church their general assemblies," and yet keep the ministers within bounds." Some interesting remarks follow on the clergy brought by William from Holland (Burnet and Tillotson ?) "one of one persuasion, and one of another," who had done "more mischief than thousands." Lord Melville concludes the letter by stating that he sends the draft of an Act of Settlement of Church Government in Scotland "as near as he can get it."
Though, perhaps, nominally at an end, the war in the Highlands was not over, and though Breadalbane had a pass to go to the King, troubles, with the return of Spring, might be again expected. "Ships and parties" had been sent northward, but they were not to "act" without further orders (pp. 256, &c.). This letter can hardly have reached the Hague by April 30th when pardons to some of the Highland chiefs were signed by King William at that place (p. 262).
Lord Melville's next letter to King William is dated on the 8th of May. News of the Jacobite "plot" had reached Scotland, and he regarded it as a "signal mercy," though the "Jacobins" made light of the affair; he regarded "the combination" which it revealed "as great and deep," and no doubt saw in it a fresh excuse for endeavouring to crush by force the adherents to King James not only in Scotland but in England and Ireland (pp. 273–275).
After this date we do not hear much more of affairs in Scotland. There is a batch of letters and orders from the King at Genappe, dated 14/24 July. They chiefly relate to the revenue, and the pay of the army. King William tells the Privy Council they have done well in appointing "a general thanksgiving to God for the success of our fleet," and he sent "hearty thanks" to those "who offered to levy taxes on their own charge for our service, when the danger was so imminent before the victory." Directions follow for the prosecution of Scotchmen "who have been about King James" (p. 366).
As might be expected the settlement of church matters in Scotland is the subject of many documents in the present calendar. Writing from Kensington on the 7th of January, the King addresses "The Ministers and Elders of the General Assembly of the Church of Scotland." He had endeavoured, by previous letters, to bring those ministers who had formerly conformed to Episcopacy to a union with those, who held to church government by presbytery "as now established by law." Not so much progress had been made in this direction as the King expected, and he now required the admission into the union of those who applied to be admitted and who were not, on enquiry, found to be "scandalous." Elaborate directions for holding such enquiries follow, and the letter concludes, "We renew to you the assurance of our intention to protect you, and to maintain the presbyterian government in the church, as established by law." This being so, the King trusted that the General Assembly would not suffer "encroachments or novelties to be imposed upon it" by "hot, violent spirits," who designed to keep church government in the hands of but a part of the ministers "which is inconsistent with the presbyterian grounds and the plan of Church Government established by Parliament in 1592, and lately ratified" (p. 88).
The "Episcopal Ministers" were addressed by the King four days later and assured that they should experience the good effects of royal protection, and, adds his Majesty, "We doubt not of your duty in uniting with your brethren, the Presbyterian Ministers," in terms which would be communicated to them by the General Assembly (p. 92).
The Earl of Lothian, appointed Commissioner at the General Assembly, is instructed on the same day: ministers were to agree to a union on the lines laid down to them in the King's letter, already quoted, before they fall upon other business to divert them." No doubt a very wise direction! The Assembly was to admit 150 of those ministers, who formerly served under episcopacy in the northern shires, upon their signing a form of declaration that had been drawn up, without further inquiry or trial, "because these ministers in the north are generally acceptable to their people"; and the Commissioner was to endeavour "that the Assembly would receive thirty ministers in the south under similar conditions, especially of the presbyteries of Dunbar, Haddington, Stirling, and Dunfermline" (pp. 92–93).
But these well-judged proposals did not suit the temper of those who held power in the Assembly, and we find, under date 6th of February, additional instructions to Lord Lothian: "We have seen the draft sent up by you, prepared by the Committee of the General Assembly, as an answer to our letter." By this the King observed that the presbyterians refused to receive their episcopalian brethren. Lord Lothian was to stop this letter from being "voted or passed by the General Assembly," a direction, no doubt, easier to give than to carry out. "Suffer them," says the King, to "sit the complete month . . . in case you can keep them from falling upon any matter that is contrary to what is contained in our letter to them and your instructions; and if you cannot restrain them, dissolve them with the first that you see it necessary." This dissolution was to be unaccompanied by a summons to a new assembly (p. 129).
From affairs in Scotland we now turn to those in Ireland:—
When the calendar opens the withdrawal of King William's forces had already commenced, but the artillery was to remain at Limerick till the next Spring. Many of the troops were to be sent to Flanders (p. 4). The English town of Limerick had been delivered to MajorGeneral Talmash shortly before the 5th of November. By the 22nd the Danish forces had been marched to Cork and their immediate departure was expected (p. 16), though it was ultimately delayed. A great deal regarding the final withdrawal of the Danes will be found in this calendar.
It was a matter of considerable difficulty to know what had best be done with the troops of James II.'s army. A general disbanding took place, and under date of November 23rd, 1691, we find a direction for letters to be sent to the Lords Justices and General Ginckle to persuade such of the soldiers as had offered their services to William III. "to go home and live quietly" (p. 17); and on November 28th, Nottingham writes that, by the King's command, Colonel Luttrell would be "very speedily" sent into Ireland to use his personal influence in this direction (p. 20). The Lords Justices seem to have considered from this letter, that they were to suspend using their own powers of persuasion till Luttrell's arrival, but a month later they were acquainted with their mistake (p. 41), though it was agreed that they should suspend their efforts till Colonel Sarsfield and the soldiers accompanying him had left for France (ibid).
But it occurred to the authorities, in London, that there might be many of the loyal Jacobites, who would have "no home to receive them," or none at least, which could "yield them a subsistence." King William was therefore willing that a regiment, not more than 1,400 strong "besides officers," should be formed for the Emperor's service. The Lords Justices set about the work of forming this regiment, though they kept its destination a secret, and on 9th January 1692, the King, by Lord Nottingham, rebukes them for their error of judgment; "you should not have made it a secret" that the regiment was for the Emperor's service, for had the men, forming it, any idea that they were to be employed in King William's own service "they will look upon themselves in a deceived manner [sic. probably written for 'in a manner deceived'], and will most probably, when they get on the other side of the sea, desert, and go into French service, as the last did, which his Majesty sent from the Isle of Wight to Hamburg." (p. 91).
The Emperor was evidently very willing to receive the proposed Irish brigade into his pay and on the 13th of February, the King consented to the original number being increased by 500, "if so many of the Irish are willing to enter into that service" (p. 136), after which we hear of arrangements with the Commissioners for Transportation to convey "2,000" Irish from Kinsale to Hamburg (p. 143). The extra hundred was made up of officers (p. 193). On the 5th of March nothing had, so far, been done towards arranging for the transportation of these troops (p. 172). Two days later instructions were given that they should embark at Long Island in Cork Harbour (ibid). Mons. Hoffman contracted for the transportation for the sum of 3,000l. and had informed Count Windisgr tz of the arrangement (p. 173).
On the 22nd of March the Lords Justices are informed that the Queen, considering that Lord Iveagh and the other officers appointed to command the Irish going to the Emperor might want money before their departure, directed that 200l. or 300l. be at once distributed amongst them, according to their necessities (p. 206). The place of departure was subsequently altered to Kinsale (p. 214).
Perhaps the completion of the 1,900 men was not a very easy matter, for, on the 16th of April, the Lords Justices are again told to hasten the completion with all speed (p. 241); but, for some reason—probably the development of affairs at home and on the continent—on the 10th of May the despatch of these troops was stopped. However, on the 24th of June, Lord Nottingham informs Mons. Hoffman of the arrival of the Irish at Hamburg. Their position was not altogether an enviable one, as Baron de Goedens pretended that he had received no orders for their subsistence, "so," says Lord Nottingham, "they run the risk of dying of hunger;" and he concludes by urging Mons. Hoffman to take prompt measures "as the affair concerns the Emperor's service too nearly to be neglected" (p. 336).
On the 26th of November 1692, the Earl of Nottingham informs the Lord Lieutenant that a proposal had been made to the King for raising 1,500 or 2,000 Irish, for the Venetian service. The King seemed "inclined to permit it," because "the late officers could not be provided for in England, and may be tempted on any occasion to act against their Majesties here or in Ireland." But King William awaited the Lord Lieutenant's opinion before taking final resolution in the matter (p. 572).
We have not before us that opinion, but the matter is again mentioned to the Lord Lieutenant by Lord Nottingham on the 29th of December when he says he will speak to Lord Galway touching the terms the Irish may expect in the Venetian service, after which the Lords Justices would be informed what further the King would do "in the affair" (p. 537).
Certain of the papers now calendared, especially the numerous petitions from persons who had suffered in body or estate during the war, afford information relating to events occurring prior to the period with which the present volume deals; such, for instance, as Lord Massareene's claim for barrelled salmon provided for Londonderry during the siege—60 tons valued at 15l. a ton (pp. 145 and 312).
A number of undated papers relating to Ireland belonging to the earlier part of the year 1691 will also be found calendared in the present volume, and many of these also refer to events happening at times with which previous volumes have dealt. Some papers, too, though placed with documents of 1691, evidently belong to earlier years, such for instance as the "considerations concerning Ireland" (p. 65).
Amongst the undated papers may be named a curious memorandum relating to the religious condition of Connaught, Munster, and Leinster. The first named province contained the most Roman Catholics and they were wealthy and generally well affected to English interests. Munster needed close attention on account of the many fishermen dwelling in it, who maintained a correspondence with France. Leinster did not give much cause for alarm, as there were enough English in it to prevent commotions. Were there any "Romish Bishops" then in Ireland, it would have been well to pay to one in each province 100l. a year for imparting intelligence, and keeping the clergy in order. "But" says the writer of the memorandum, "I know of none"; he thinks, however, that some of the secular clergy might be induced to act in that capacity in lieu of the Bishops. "The regular Clergy of the Kingdom are not now very numerous, as most of them flock to Dublin for bread, not being able to subsist in the country"; these, the writer suggests, might be banished; "they are a burden to the Kingdom, and under no government but that of their superiors"; and they " depend more immediately on the Pope's authority, and are supported by it against their Bishops. They bear a greater sway amongst the people than the secular priests, and are more irreconcilable to their Majesties' government, and they seem to wish for nothing more than to be sent away, that they may be supported abroad." The promiscuous seizure of Roman Catholics in the time of turmoil is, the writer considers, highly undesirable, and he charges the Protestants with having acted unfairly and dishonestly in this matter (pp. 55, 56).
In another undated paper we have a detailed account of the condition of the forts in Ireland, with suggestions as to their future, given by Lord Talbot; this contains many interesting features: At Dublin the castle was "all in rubbish by the late fire" and even before was not, from its position, suitable as a residence for the chief governor (pp. 71–74). An order for the demolition of certain castles was sent to the Lords Justices on 27th of February 1692 (p. 152).
Earlier in February the Earl of Nottingham had written to the Lords Justices that the ratification of the Articles of Limerick would be sent to them as soon as it has passed the Great Seal, and that the King would speedily come to a resolution as to the garrisons, and as to the residence of the commander of the forces there. As to declaring the war to be at an end, as it might be necessary to distinguish between localities in the matter of payment of quit-rents and hearth-money, the King would therefore know what they thought "most proper for the commencement of those payments, according to the circumstances and condition of several parts of the Kingdom" (p. 123). The proclamation which finally declared the war at an end was issued on the 3rd of March (p. 172).
Lord Sydney refers to his appointment as Lord Lieutenant of Ireland on the 29th of February, and states that the King had directed him to repair there "with all speed" (p. 157). His "instructions" bear date on the same day as the proclamation of the end of the war; they are an important declaration of policy. The new Lord Lieutenant was to inform himself of the present state of the kingdom and transmit an account thereof; to settle matters in the church "for the good service of God," and to see that livings in the Crown's gift were supplied with "pious and orthodox persons," as they become void, and to endeavour to induce other patrons of livings to do the like; to enquire generally into the administration of justice, and to assist the Commissioners of the Revenue to see that " our interests are better served in the survey of extended lands"; in case, at any time, the revenue should not "hold out" to pay the whole "establishment," no pension was to be paid till the entire civil and military list had been discharged, and if the surplus was insufficient to pay all pensions, a proportionable abatement was to be made on each; the forces were to be mustered, and the oath administered to them; quartering of soldiers was to be carried out with the least inconvenience to civilians, and quarrelling between the officers was to be rigorously punished; the art of making salt-petre was to be set up, for the better supply of powder, and the new Lord Lieutenant was to do all in his power, to advance the trade of the country "so far as it may consist with the welfare of England." The improvement of the fishing trade and linen manufacture, and the regulation of defects in packing and curing butter and beef, were also specially commended to Lord Sydney's care. "You shall," continue his instructions, "give all lawful encouragement to all protestant strangers resorting to Ireland, and if a considerable number of them shall be willing to establish themselves in any cities or towns, or in any other places, for trade and manufacture, upon representation of the same to us, we will give order that they shall enjoy such privileges as may be consistent with the laws of Ireland." The transportation of wool was to be prohibited and the best means taken to prevent "the unlawful coining and vending of small money for change." As rebels and fugitives had come into Ireland from Scotland, the Lord Lieutenant was required to "correspond with our council in Scotland," and "in order thereto," to establish a packet-boat, between the two kingdoms, if necessary." He was also to seize any "rebels" coming from Scotland and to "send them hither," and inform himself "how far our proclamation for papists to bring in their arms has been obeyed." Finally, he was to see that the articles granted last year to Galway, Limerick, and other places on their surrenders were construed according to their strict meaning and intention, "without showing any favour"; and as divers persons in Ireland, were liable to prosecution for offences against the Crown, he was to notify their names so that "our further pleasure thereon" might be certified. None of those who submitted voluntarily, and had since lived peaceably, were to be prosecuted, and no favour was to be shown to those, who since their submission had returned to the enemy (pp. 169 et seq.).
It appears that the date of Lord Sydney's departure was fixed for the 18th of April (p. 215), but this was delayed owing to the want of a man-of-war to convoy him from Chester (p. 226). Arrangements for the conveyance of his baggage, etc., occur on the 23rd of April (p. 251), but as we shall see, his departure did not take place for a considerable time, and our knowledge of events passing in Ireland is mainly derived from correspondence between Lord Nottingham and the Lords Justices.
On the 2nd of April Lord Nottingham sent to them a list of bills that the Queen desired them to prepare "against the sitting of Parliament in Ireland" (p. 214), which was to be as soon as the Lord Lieutenant arrived. The bills were for the attainder of those dying in rebellion; for indemnity against private suits; to settle the revenue; to regulate the Excise and Hearth Tax; to encourage the linen manufacture; to naturalize protestant strangers; to oblige the clergy to residence; for the ease of protestant dissenters; to distribute intestates' estates; and to prevent frauds and perjuries (pp. 214-215).
But the preparation of these bills was delayed, owing, as the Queen suspected, to the action and influence of the Lord Chief Justice Reynell and the law officers of the Crown in Ireland: and, on the 5th of July, Lord Nottingham informed the Lords Justices that Her Majesty "being informed that the bills which the Lord Chief Justice Reynell and the Attorney and Solicitor General were ordered particularly to take care should be prepared, are not yet drawn, is extremely displeased with the delay, and thinks that it proceeds from their unwillingness that a Parliament should be called in Ireland, which their Majesties thought necessary for the peace of it, as well as their own service, and this aggravates the neglect of her commands, which I have, since the departure of these gentlemen, repeated to you, and am again commanded to let you know that the Queen expects the Bills, especially those which were directed to be first drawn, to be forthwith submitted hither on paper, that no more time be lost" (p. 357).
What exactly was the cause of the delay in Lord Sidney's departure to assume the government of Ireland, we do not know. It was, as we have seen, arranged to take place early in the year; yet, writing to the King on the 12th of July, he speaks of it as contingent on the King's acceptance of certain proposals made by Mr. Elnathan Lumm, for raising money for Ireland, which he says "indeed, is so infinitely necessary, that it will be impossible to carry on your business in that kingdom without it " (p. 304).
Lord Godolphin, whose letter is dated on the same day, writes " My Lord Sydney says that, upon the granting or refusing of this proposal, his going into Ireland wholly depends" (p. 365); these proposals will be found at p. 548. We have not the King's answer to Lord Sydney, but on the 22nd of July, he asks the King for final instructions, as he was anxious to begin his journey (p. 365). It was the King's intention to call the Irish Parliament to meet on the new Lord Lieutenant's arrival, but the Lords Justices hesitated to issue the writs, on the ground that such issue by them might endanger the dissolution of the Parliament so called together.
It was therefore decided that the writs should be all prepared leaving blank the date of their issue, which should be filled in and sealed the moment Lord Sydney arrived (pp. 398–399).
Lord Sydney's departure was once more postponed; for, ten days after this (on the 2nd of August), he went down to Portsmouth to take part in the deliberations of the Duke of Leinster and Admiral Russell as to the proposed descent upon France. However, on the 6th of August, Williamson's correspondent speaks of his departure as fixed for "Thursday next." The French privateers were lurking in St. George's Channel anxious to intercept the new LordLieutenant on his passage (ibid).
The first letter from Lord Nottingham to Lord Sydney in Ireland, is dated on the 25th of August. Certain bills under the great seal of Ireland had been received from the Lords Justices for consideration by the Queen in Council, and these were now returned, either approved or with suggested alterations, in order that they might be laid before the Irish Parliament on its assembly. The warrant for appointing a Commissioner of Enquiry into the conduct of those entrusted with stores of war, provisions, and forfeited goods, &c., a measure for which Lord Sydney appears to have been especially anxious, would be signed next day (p. 421). This promise was carried out and the Commission will be found under date 26th of August (pp. 422–426).
From this time the letters from Lord Nottingham to Lord Sydney contain important evidence of the policy which it was desired by the King or the Queen should be pursued in Ireland, and (though we have not his replies before us) also of Sydney's own views on the suggested policy, and on the development of events. For instance, on the 13th of September, Nottingham writes, in answer to some comment made by Sydney, " I did not know that any favour was intended to the papists of Ireland more than their Majesties are obliged, in justice, to allow them and is necessary for the peace of that country " (p. 447).
In the matter of church preferment in Ireland the Queen evidently took an active interest (pp. 463 and 477). A direction for an increase of the concordatum money was issued on the 27th of September (p. 464).
On the same day Nottingham expresses the Queen's satisfaction at Sydney's care in obtaining 100,000l. from the Parliament (p. 465); presumably, this was a promise from the Parliament that the sum would be voted, for the date of meeting was not till the 5th of October (p. 434). The Queen would not allow the Speaker what Sydney had proposed, " being unwilling to create a precedent;" she "would rather give him a gratuity for his pains and expenses at the end of session" (p. 471).
Letters from Dublin on October the 12th stated that the Parliament had, up to that time, done little besides the appointment of Committees. The Commission of Enquiry had " fallen upon " Mr. Culliford, and had summoned him to attend them (p. 486).
On the 2nd of November, Nottingham writes to the LordLieutenant that the Act of Attainder and Indemnity, which had been sent to England, " meets with so many objections that it is not likely to be passed in this Parliament." The Attorney General had, therefore, received orders to prepare a confirmation of the Articles of Limerick, which the King promised to recommend to Parliament, and which would "go a great way towards the extinguishing of private suits . the Bill for the Ease (fn. 3) of Protestant Dissenters is also rejected, because, without the clause for a sacramental test, it is not likely to pass in Ireland, and with it perhaps the dissenters will not like it." Lord Nottingham hoped in his next to signify the King's pleasure as to ending the Session and as to Lord Sydney's return to England (pp. 492–493).
By a warrant of the same date the clergy of Ireland were discharged of payment of arrears of first fruits (p. 493). A week later, on the 9th of November, Lord Nottingham forwards the Act of Indemnity, " which is reduced to a very short one, being only to pardon and discharge all suits against those of Limerick, and that they should bring no such like actions against others." This was the last bill Lord Sydney was to expect that year, and the king thought "a speedy end" should be put to the Session (p. 497).
A news letter, dated on the following day, speaks of the Lord-Lieutenant's return in three weeks (p. 500). The fact that he had actually prorogued Parliament is mentioned on the 15th November (p. 504).
One or two more references to the progress of the Committee of Enquiry occur in the present Calendar, but the chief topic now dealt with in Lord Nottingham's letters to Lord Sydney, is an expected invasion from France, and the state of the fortifications in Ireland. The expected invasion, no doubt, detained the LordLieutenant in Ireland longer than was intended, and when the present volume closes, at the end of 1692, he was still there. The last instructions to him are dated on the 29th of December. The King would not have him proceed further in the matter of the abjuration, but thought it better to take the same measures in Ireland, as would probably " be speedily endeavoured " in England; and he approved of Lord Sydney's action in securing suspected persons (p. 537).
As to the threatened invasion, we learn under date 26th of November, that the French had "some thoughts" of attempting Cork and Kinsale, and that King William desired vessels to be sent from Ireland to Brest to gain advice of the preparations there making (p. 512). 6,000l. was to be spent on putting Cork and Kinsale in a suitable posture of defence (p. 524); later, on the 22nd of December, we learn that Lord Sydney designed to visit "in person" all the fortified towns in Ireland along the sea-coast, the descent from France being expected in the following spring (p. 530). Fresh troops were ordered to Ireland, and all the officers of the regiments then there, who were on leave in England were ordered to return (pp. 512 and 532).
As in previous volumes of the Calendar, much interesting matter relating to Ireland may be obtained from the miscellaneous papers. Early in February, the Provost, Fellows, and Scholars of Trinity College, Dublin, pleaded their poverty as a reason for the reduction of the quitrent of 250l. payable by them to the Crown. Since 1688 such had been "the public calamity" that their revenue from land was but 100l. a year, and their college building was reduced to ruin by being made a place in which to quarter French and Irish soldiers (p. 122). The Crown took a generous view of the College's necessitous state (p. 419). The havoc wrought by the troublous times through which Ireland had passed, is also witnessed in the King's order that money in the hands of the Crown Officers in Ireland, from the see of Derry, collected during vacancy, be applied to the repair of churches in that diocese, "very much ruined during the late war" and "in danger of falling, if speedy care is not taken to prevent it" (pp. 159 and 161).
The clergy of Limerick also petitioned the Crown for relief. During "the two last sieges" the cathedral and other churches in the city, were so ruined by bombs "that the inhabitants would not worship in them," and those inhabitants were so impoverished by the late war that they were unable to rebuild or repair them. The clergy, therefore, prayed for a grant of the forfeited estate of a citizen, valued at 1,000l. or 1,500l., so that, with the proceeds thereof, the repairs might be carried out (pp. 400, 401). The petition was warmly supported by the Lord Lieutenant (p. 404).
The distressed state of the country also drew forth substantial acknowledgement from the Crown on several other occasions. On the 19th of March, Lord Nottingham informed the Treasury that the Queen had given directions that cattle might be imported into Ireland from England duty free for one year (p. 186), and in the matter of quit-rents and the hearth-tax, her Majesty was pleased, on the 30th of April, to remit what was due in respect to those payments at the previous Lady Day (p. 261); a royal warrant to that effect was issued on the 24th of June (p. 337).
The state of the country led to a large increase in the price of provisions in Dublin, and on the 3rd of March the King directed an augmentation of 4d. a day, to the then pay of each trooper, and of 2d. to that of each foot-soldier, because all manner of provisions and necessaries were so much dearer in the city in question, and it would be otherwise impossible for the men to subsist on their pay (p. 166). Very strict orders for the due payment of "quarter" were, from time to time, issued.
The instructions, which, as we have seen, were drawn up for Lord Sydney on his intended departure to assume the duties of chief governor of Ireland, display an evident anxiety to encourage, in every way, the industrial development of the country; one of the industries, which it was sought to promote, was the linen manufacture, of the condition of which, prior to 1692, we have a curious illustration in a warrant for releasing Frances Lovett, widow, from the covenants in a lease, made to her husband in 1673 for 21 years, of the "bleaching yards and weaving shops" at Chapelizod. These premises, for the better carrying on of the linen manufacture, Charles II. had leased to Lovett, and had given him 1,200l. to fit up the necessary machines, which sum was to be repaid on expiry of the lease. The covenants, from which relief was sought, related to the number of the looms which the lessee was bound to keep at work. The grounds on which release was asked were, that the widow had suffered for the Protestant religion, and for having refused to furnish James II.'s army with goods and tents, "whereupon her goods were seized by one Broomfield, a quaker" (pp. 321–322). Another Irish industry, the fishery, receives a good deal of illustration in the present calendar.
A very important factor in the subsequent industrial development of Ireland was the settlement there of numerous foreign protestants, and of this settlement some interesting notices will be found. Under date 16th of February we have an extract from a document in which Lord Nottingham is asked to move the King to give orders to Mr. Cox, or Mons. Herveart, at Berne, to use their influence with the heads of the Protestant Cantons, so that they may allow the French refugees to stay in Switzerland until the time came when they could be sent to Ireland. Means to enable them to take this journey would have to be provided, and orders were sent to Mr. Cox accordingly (p. 138). An undated memorandum states that, as King William intended to pay the expenses of such refugees, it would be well if the States General would appoint an accountant. It was hoped that a great number of these refugees would be sent, and it was therefore desirable that as little as possible be expended on travelling, otherwise the number of families sent would be reduced, and the condition of those left behind would be "worthy of pity" (p. 543).
So much for the evidence regarding Scotland and Ireland afforded by the documents calendared in this volume up to its close at the end of 1692. We now turn to consider entries relating to events in England subsequent to King William's return from Flanders in October of that year. Of these there are, as we said, singularly few. The documents calendared give us no particulars of King William's meeting with Parliament, towards which he can—as has been said—have looked with but a small degree of comfort; neither do we learn any details of the various questions raised, or of the skilful handling of enquiries as to the conduct of affairs, which led to the Parliament undertaking to "stand by" the King "with their estates and persons," and voting the sums required for the conduct of affairs, after the fancy of the King and his ministers, in the future.
Amongst the few things which, at the period in question, we do find illustrated in the Calendar may be named the proclamation for public thanksgiving for the King's safe return and the victory over the French at La Hogue, and the great civic entertainment to their Majesties on "the Lord Mayor's Day" (487 and 489); the continuation of bail for the suspected Lords (p. 489), and a memorandum, under date the 30th of November, of Proceedings in Council (pp. 515–516). The last named is the only official record, if we may use the expression, to be found, the other references being contained in "news letters," or mentioned in gossip.
As in previous volumes, a vast number of the papers now calendared relate to the Army—military commissions, movements of regiments, condition and strength of those regiments, the English troops serving abroad with the Allies, the sentiments with which the Foreign Allies regarded our troops, and so forth. Writing from Malines under date 8th February 1692, Count de Solms tells the Prince of Waldeck, that "even if the English were put on an equal footing with the Dutch, that would not put the King [William] right with the Parliament, for the English officers write to England all that is passing, and finding that they abroad are treated in a different manner to the foreigners in England, the feeling would be prejudicial to the King" (p. 130). Waldeck admits that the treatment of the English is "a delicate matter" (p. 133). The question of payment for quarters was in 1692, as vexed as ever, and the irregular manner in which the officers obtained their pay rendered due satisfaction exceedingly difficult. At Northampton five troops of Sir John Lanier's regiment of horse had gone away owing over 500l. to various inn-holders, victuallers, corn-chandlers and farriers (p. 232). At Portsmouth when the Lieutenant-Governor desired of the Mayor billets for 60 recruits—the barracks being already over-crowded, and the men lying "three in a bed";—he was told by his worship that "he dared not concern himself any more with the quartering of soldiers" as he feared being sued at law if he did: for, though there was no law for it, there was none against it (p. 239).
Writing to the Duke of Leinster on 10th June, Lord Nottingham says that the Queen is informed that the troops turn their horses into the meadows at Petworth, particularly in the grounds of the Duke of Somerset, and that at Chiswick, where the men were quartered in private houses paying but 3d. a day for three meals, they would not "pay that neither" (p. 320). Three days later a proclamation enjoining more regular payment of quarters was issued (p. 323).
The inn-holders of Westminster complained on 2nd September that "since the Earl of Oxford's regiment of horse had come to keep Whitehall" they, the petitioners, were refused more than 6d. a night for "hay, straw, and lodgings" and that the soldiers took "the best of their rooms" (p. 431). The Crown directed that the price be advanced to 8d. (p. 442). What was done in the case of Richard Denne, also a Westminster inn-holder, we do not know; he could not obtain 30l. due for quartering the Guards' horses, some of the officers being then in Flanders (pp. 467–468).
The question of precedency in the Army is dealt with in an interesting letter from the Earl of Nottingham to the Duke of Leinster on 22nd July; the King had already declared that all colonels should take their precedency according to the date of their commissions, without any distinction between those who had their commissions from the King, when Prince of Orange, and those who had them after his accession to the Crown, and the Queen desired that this rule be observed in all future disputes (p. 380).
With regard to the militia we find on the 13th of January a King's warrant authorising (under an Act of 14 Charles II.) the Lieutenants of the City of London to impose, for one year, a tax for defraying the charge for the support of the city militia (p. 97). On the scare of a Jacobite plot and French preparations for a descent upon England, the militia of Westminster was mustered in Hyde Park, and utilized nightly for guarding Westminster; the militia of Middlesex was also to be called out, as were those of Sussex and Hants (pp. 268 and 283).
Some of the documents relating to Chelsea Hospital are interesting; amongst the undated papers for 1691 will be found the estimate of a year's expenses in regard to it, amounting to just over 12,000l. In the following spring the Earl of Ranelagh, Sir Stephen Fox, and Sir Christopher Wren were directed to enquire what had been the entire cost of the erection and furnishing of the Hospital (p. 169). The famous architect is himself a petitioner for some payment from the fund out of which the hospital was built, in regard to his "expense in ten years' attendance on so considerable a building" (p. 433).
Papers relating to the navy, and to maritime affairs, are numerous. The lack of sailors for the fleet was, as in previous years, a serious matter. We find a vigorous system of pressing in operation (pp. 240, 242–3, 283, 432, 444, etc.), and carried on with that unfortunate want of discrimination which occasionally characterises official energy; as for instance, when "Mr. Jeremiah Burlingham, Alderman of Dunwich," was pressed as a common seaman on board the Russell (p. 432).
In their anxiety to escape from the press-gangs, sailors sought to get to the Plantations, and on the 14th of April, Lord Nottingham informed the Lords Justices that the embargo in Ireland could not be taken off, for, "if it were once removed," seamen would get into Ireland, and find an opportunity of proceeding thence to the Plantations or some other parts, to the great prejudice of their Majesties' service "in manning the fleet" (p. 233). Various directions to prevent the escape of seamen by means of the transport ships going to Ireland follow: The Customs' officers at the ports from which the vessels sailed were to give security for bringing back the seamen carried out (ibid.).
Under date 30th April are certain proposals by the Lords of the Admiralty for manning the fleet; amongst these we find it suggested that all seamen along the coast be pressed "without regard to any protections," except they be on ships with victuals or stores for the fleet; that "masters and officers as well as men" in the small craft be liable to this press; that special officers be sent to press on the Thames and Medway; and that a general embargo be laid on all ships and vessels, "as well coasters as others" (p. 263). Pressed men for the fleet were sent to Landguard Fort and kept prisoners there till the Admiralty should "order them hence" (p. 341). To encourage seamen to join their Majesties' ships we find directions given that they should be paid their wages to Michaelmas 1692, on their joining their ships the next spring (p. 464). Seamen belonging to first, second and third rates were to receive their pay through the winter (p. 480).
The documents bearing on our naval preparations prior to the battle of La Hogue, and on our descent upon France, have already been mentioned. The bulk of other papers relating to the fleet, refer to the expedition, which, under the command of Sir Francis Wheler, sailed, in the autumn of 1692, to attack the French possessions in the West Indies. Sir Francis himself was evidently a person of strong individuality, and some of his letters are thoroughly characteristic of the typical English sailor of former days, so often depicted in song, verse, or story.
From on board the Albemarle, on the 18th of July, Sir Francis acknowledges the honour done to him by the King in offering him the command of the expedition. He accepts the offer, subject to the acceptance by the Admiralty of certain proposals, amongst them that he may be "wholly independent of the Governor of any of the Plantations and their councils of war; that my instructions may positively tell me my charge, and let my life answer my behaviour; "that in any expedition, when troops are landed, he may command "next the General; "that he might have power to hold courts martial; that two special boats be sent for him to go "a turtling for sick men, or otherwise," when in the West Indies; that he may arrange for proper hospital accommodation in one of the islands; that a physician and apothecary be sent with him; that all preparations be made as secretly as possible, "because our preparations are always so public that the enemy form their strength accordingly;" and that, if "it shall please God to give us success," the whole booty be at once divided in open field," a just reward to those "who, for so little, go so far to seek their graves." (pp. 346–352). Wheler was commanded to London (p. 392) and, on the 13th of September, acquainted Lord Nottingham with what he thought necessary to be done in regard to the expedition in order to ensure success: "At least three months' victuals" was needed to be sent out; that, should they run short, letters of credit be sent to the Governments of New England and New York to replenish; that he himself should have a colonel's share of any booty secured; and that leave be given to attack the city of Quebec and "lay it in ashes" (pp. 447–448). The Queen agreed to his request as to booty, whenever he served on land with 400 men from the ships (p. 455). Sir Francis agreed to this; it would, he said, be unreasonable to ask for a share of the plunder under any other condition for "it is fit those who win it should wear it." He then goes on to make recommendations and requests respecting individuals to go upon the expedition, and specially pleads for Major Nott; "his private affairs are very bad for want of pay, and it would be a great charity if you would get the Queen's order for some of his money. He maintains an aged mother at his own charge and [does] many other good turns to his poor kindred" (pp. 458–459).
There is one more letter from Wheler, and it is written on the eve of sailing: the Rupert had brought in "a pretty French privateer of 16 guns," he begs she may join his fleet and, if necessary, the Cygnet be left behind for she was the "dumbest (sic) worst sailor in the world." (pp. 524–525).
The expedition seems finally to have sailed from Spithead on the evening of the 21st of December; and it was announced that the French had sent 30 men-of-war to intercept it (p. 530).
Whether or not from Wheler's continuous solicitations for the proper equipment of the expedition, we do not know, but in reading the papers about it one is struck by the remarkable care manifested for the comfort and health of the men. The College of Physicians was asked to send specially capable members of the medical profession as physician and apothecary (pp. 409 and 424). The physician selected was Dr. William Grimbalston.
Details of the expedition will probably appear in the next volume of this Calendar, but it may be here remarked that there is a great deal about it in the report published by the Historical Manuscripts Commission in 1894, on the Duke of Portland's papers at Welbeck.
Other naval papers that will be read with interest relate to the Marines, and to Greenwich Hospital. A letter from the Earl of Nottingham, dated 27th of May 1692, informs the Commissioners of the Treasury that the Queen desired "to hasten as much as possible the grant of Greenwich as a hospital for seamen," which was then before them, or "otherwise that they should report their opinion to Her Majesty with all speed" (p. 301). This letter suggests that Greenwich Palace had been selected as the site for a home for disabled seamen at an earlier date than that generally mentioned. In the following October we hear of their Majesties' intention of annexing an adjacent piece of land to the "house" which would be "very convenient" for the service (p. 481). The actual grant of the palace, in trust for hospital purposes, was not made till 1694.
Some of the ecclesiastical documents here calendared are not without interest; in the undated papers for 1691 are proposed rules for the "better and more equal distribution of church preferments," which, if followed, would "free the King from a great deal of importunity." The rules are five in number. The second is to the effect that the minister of St. Margaret's, Westminster, should always be a prebend of Westminster, "because the House of Commons go to that church, and therefore it is fit there should be encouragement for a good preacher." The fifth rule suggests that the preferment of foreigners should be given with moderation "lest the English be discouraged." A list of persons, fit, in the writer's opinion, for preferment, then follows, and contains many well-known names, with remarks about them (p. 49). The deprivations of several of the non-juring bishops and clergy will be found mentioned in the Calendar. A warrant of the 6th of October 1692 directs that "the three forms of prayer and service" made for the 5th of November, the 30th of January, and the 29th of May, be, for the future, annexed to the Book of Common Prayer and regularly used (p. 472).
A somewhat curious petition for Crown support is made by the Chapter of the Collegiate Church of Southwell. They state that they have lately "set up" a lecture or afternoon sermon" on the Lord's Day for the benefit of the large parish of Southwell, which had no other church "but the said Collegiate Church." The Chapter could not support this from their revenues, and they asked for some help from the Crown, more especially as the yearly pension granted to them by King Edward VI. was in arrear to the value of 500l. "Knowing their Majesties' great occasion," they did not ask for this in specie, but they suggested that timber from Sherwood Forest to the value of 500l. should be granted to them (p. 526).
Under the date 3rd of May 1692, we find the appointment of a commission, consisting of the Lord Mayor of London, the Archbishops of York and Canterbury, and various other prominent persons, ecclesiastical and lay, including Sir Christopher Wren, "for carrying on, finishing, and adorning St. Paul's Cathedral (p. 267).
Only a few papers in the present Calendar relate to the British colonies and to places which are now part of the Empire. Thomas Neale appears as an applicant for a grant of escheats to the Crown in the American Plantations, stating that he, having "settled a postage" there, had special facilities for discovering them. In July part of the Fleet had been sent to "destroy" the French fishery in Newfoundland (p. 489). Special collections in churches throughout England are directed to be made for the spread of Christianity in Virginia (p. 542).
A "melancholy account" reached England, early in August, 1692, of the great earthquake in Jamaica: it had "sunk" the greatest part of Port Royal and "drowned 2,000 of the inhabitants." Much mischief, too, was done to the shipping (p. 402). In the following October a royal warrant appoints Joseph Bathurst and William Doddington to execute the office of Clerk of the Common Pleas in any town in the Island, the earthquake having destroyed Port Royal where they formerly discharged their duties (p. 472).
Amongst the various inventions, which it was sought to protect by patent, attention should be called to projects for smelting by means of pit-coal; a project which led to the transfer of the iron industry from the thickly wooded country of Kent, Surrey, and Sussex to the northern parts of England. (fn. 4) On the 15th of February a warrant was issued for a patent to Thomas Addison for his invention of "melting or smelting down" iron ore etc., by use of "sea or pit-coal" and of making the same into "good and merchantable bar-iron," etc. (p. 137). A month later, we find referred to the Attorney or Solicitor General the petition by Constantine Vernatty, Thomas Addison, John Nix, and John and George Moore to be incorporated into a "joint stock," for carrying on the smelting of lead by the newly discovered process, under the title of "the Company of Lead Miners in England and Wales" (p. 178). Then at the close of the year, we have notice of the petition of Talbot Clerk, Thomas Addison, George Moor, and Henry Corbett to be incorporated for the purpose of smelting iron under the title of the "Company for making Iron with Pitcoal" (p. 518). The petition is fully recited in the Attorney General's favourable report upon it. The petitioners had set out that "by reason iron could not hitherto be made or cast by pit-coal, a great many good mines . . . . have lain unwrought, and great sums of money have been remitted to foreign parts to procure the same." The petitioners alleged that their undertaking would be of "use in saving the consumption of great quantities of wood, which are daily spent in melting and smelting iron," and that it would "promote the vending of English iron," because smelting by pit-coal would be much cheaper, and so the iron might be sold cheaper. Directions were given for granting the incorporation as desired (pp. 523–524). The suggestion for smelting iron ore by pit-coal was, as we know, not actually novel, as it was heard of early in the seventeenth century, but it was a long time after the year 1692 that pit-coal became at all generally used in smelting ores.
Space precludes the possibility of referring in the preface to many other inventions, which furnish material for the consideration of the industrial history of the country; suffice it to say that the patents sought relate to, amongst other things, paper, yarns, tapestry, japanning, diving and fishery appliances, and machines for raising wrecks, silk-weaving, tanning, and salt-petre making. References to these will be found in the index, under the word "inventions."
A word may, however, be said, by way of calling particular attention to two or three of the patents sought for. On the 11th of June Thomas Samborne showed forth by his petition, that by long study, pains, and at great charge, he had invented and perfected "a certain exercise called "Fives" which was "moderately expensive," in itself "innocent and harmless," and which very much conduced to "the health and refreshment" of those who practised it (p. 320). The advantages of the game must have been readily apparent, and a few days later the petitioner obtained his patent (p. 335). Thomas Neal, pointing out the beneficial effect of setting up lamp lights in the streets of London, which had much lessened the number of robberies, desired to hazard the erection of such lamps in Dublin, and other towns in Ireland, trusting to receive from those who benefited by them a recompense for his labour (p. 297). Presumably his request was granted, as, a little later, we find an applicant for a patent for an "improved" method of lighting the streets of Dublin (p. 328).
A monopoly in the provision of post horses for travellers seems to have been contemplated by Evan Jones and Benjamin Wood, who, at the close of 1691, state that they have discovered a method "to carry and entertain" travellers on horseback along the main roads from London "on easy, cheap and safe terms," which would be a material public benefit; their undertaking to be called the "Traveller's Guide, licensed by their Majesties" (p. 37). The petition was sent to the law officers of the Crown and we do not find what was done upon it; but a year later the same petitioners set forth their scheme again, pointing out its advantages in greater detail and asked to be incorporated as the "Travellers' Conduct, licensed by his Majesty." This petition was referred to Sir Robert Cotton and Thomas Frankland, who jointly filled the office of Postmaster-General (p. 469).
Perhaps, however, one of the most curious objects for which a patent was sought, was the collection of Briefs. Under date the 12th April, the Attorney-General reports upon the petition of three persons who desired a patent for erecting "a public office" for the collection and distribution of money collected from the charitable upon "Briefs." The Attorney says "I believe it to be true that the persons entrusted to collect the money so given . . . . have very often misapplied the same"; and he also believed that "the erecting such a public office as is desired in the petition, may not only be a means to prevent the like frauds and miscarriages for the future, but will be a great benefit and advantage to the sufferers by such casualties, by the better securing and hastening the payment of the money collected to their use." He therefore advised granting to the petitioners the patent authorising them to "keep and execute" the office they proposed (p. 229). Whether or not the patent was granted the Calendar does not tell us, but, sometime later, we find two other petitioners, one of them Benjamin Tudman, the goldsmith and banker, praying leave to patent a discovery they had made of a safe means for collecting charitable gifts "to the general satisfaction" (p. 359).
The social state of the country, its learning, its trade, its amusements, its fashions, and its vices also find illustration in various other documents in the Calendar. There is much about the Universities, though more about the political views of those sojourning there than about study. John Weale prayed to be admitted "master of the science of single rapier, and to be employed in teaching therein such young gentlemen of his Majesty's family and dependence as his Majesty shall direct." The petition was referred to the Duke of Leinster (p. 141). The citizens of Rochester agreed to suppress the nuisance of hawkers, pedlars, and itinerant chapmen (p. 84); and four bold individuals asserted that they had discovered a method for meeting a difficulty which then, as now, prevailed in finding desirable domestic servants: "For preventing the general complaint of the unfaithfulness of servants," they agreed to set up a registry office, by means of which "cheats and vagabonds" might be detected, and they prayed the King's licence to gather, for sixty years, the sum of 3d. each from servants entering their names for enquiry at their registry (p. 14). Gentlemen of the road were so much in evidence that the King determined he would pardon no more of those captured and convicted (p. 531).
Many entries in the Calendar touch upon the history of individuals. We have already spoken of some which relate to King James II. himself, and those sympathising with him and his cause. Amongst such persons was the King's sister, the Princess Sophia of Hanover, from whom is a curious letter, in which she declares to William III. that though attached to the "good cause," yet she has sympathies with King James (p. 542).
King James's famous proclamation, dated at the Court at St. Germains on the 2nd of April 1691, and an "advertisement" thereon, will be found on pages 263 and 264. The news of its arrival is conveyed to Sir Joseph Williamson by his usual correspondent on the 14th of the same month; "several lords and others of the late King James's Privy Council have received letters from him, wherein he desires them to come over to be present at the birth of the Queen's child, which will be about the middle of May." The recipients had laid the letter before the Queen in Council (p. 235).
Other entries to which attention may be called relate to the Queen Dowager (Catherine of Braganza) and her return to Portugal; Sir Rowland Gwynne's dismissal from office; the Princess Anne of Denmark and her town house in Berkeley Square; and John Evelyn's illness.
To Lord Nottingham, and the aspersions cast upon his character and the administration of his office as Secretary of State, we find reference in the last letter written in 1692—a letter already mentioned in this preface—by himself to Lord Sydney. "I confess" he writes "it is very uneasy to me to be charged with faults, especially of infidelity, and it is yet more uneasy to have the faults of others, and not my own, imputed to me, and this by one who has owned me for his friend, and I thought had been mine too. I will not trouble you with many aggravating circumstances of his proceedings towards me; but it will be sufficient to justify mine to assure you that he began. And if I have endeavoured to expose his actions by truly stating them, I hope I am not to be blamed. The provocation I received, and my own defence, will excuse me, and I believe it is now pretty evident that the miscarriages are not to be charged on me, and that I have acted, in my part, as a true servant of their Majesties. And as I have been very happy in having you a witness of many of my actions, so I am very proud that you so generously wish for opportunity to be my advocate too" (p. 537).
Many important topographical papers will be found in the Calendar, relating both to London and other parts of the kingdom. The grantee of three weekly markets in the "Haymarket" could not induce the farmers to pay the tolls which his grant gave him leave to gather, and he begged the bestowal upon him of some further powers to enforce payment. His petition was referred to the Attorney General and the members for Middlesex (p. 107). The metropolis was, it may here be mentioned, visited in September 1692, though very slightly, by the earthquake which was so destructive in various parts of Europe (p. 444). Viscount Tarbat received the royal sanction to plant "oyster scaps" in the Bay of Cromarty (p. 164); the pearl fishery in the waters of Cumberland was to be developed by a joint stock company to be called "The Company of Pearl Fishers in Cumberland" (pp. 40, 98, and 127), and the Treasury made an interesting report upon the title of the Corporation of London to the conservancy of the Thames and Medway (p. 289). The Trinity House obtained the Crown's sanction to erect a lighthouse on the Eddystone in July 1692 (pp. 336, 375, and 389). The reason for Winstanley's name not appearing in connection with the undertaking which made him so famous, I have explained in an account of the Lighthouse published in 1897. (fn. 5) An attempt to retain Rye as a seaport is referred to in Robert Colepeper's prayer for a grant of certain "over-flowed salts," which he desired to fence off from the sea in order to carry out his project of re-opening the harbour at Rye (p. 137).
W. J. HARDY.