Calendar of State Papers Domestic: William and Mary, 1694-5. Originally published by His Majesty's Stationery Office, London, 1906.
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The period covered by the present volume extends from the 1st of January, 1694, to the 30th of June, 1695.
The King, who had returned from his foreign campaign in October of the previous year, remained in England until the beginning of May, 1694. As the Tories appeared unwilling to continue the war, William, upon the advice of Sunderland, turned to the Whig party, which now came into power, and attained a majority, not only in Parliament, but also on the commission of the lieutenancy of the City of London (p. 21), and changes were made in the commissions throughout England. The King's attitude towards Parliament is illustrated by his answer to the "humble representation of the House of Commons," made in March 1694, on the subject of giving the Royal assent to Bills which had been passed by both Houses. The Commons urged that all Bills passed by both Houses for the redress of grievances, or other public good, had at all times received the Royal assent, save in a few instances, "and those attended with great inconveniency to the Crown of England, especially where the same hath been withheld by insinuations of particular persons, without the advice of the Privy Council." They reminded the King that since his accession, he had several times refused his assent, notably in the case of the Bill touching free and impartial proceedings in Parliament; and concluded "None can have so great a concern and interest in the prosperity and happiness of your Majesty and your Government as your two Houses of Parliament, and we therefore humbly pray that for the future your Majesty would graciously be pleased to hearken to the advice of your Parliament, and not to the secret advices of particular persons who may have private interests of their own."
The King replied:—"No prince ever had a higher esteem for the constitution of the English Government than myself, and I shall ever have a great regard to the advice of Parliaments. I am persuaded that nothing can so much conduce to the happiness and welfare of this kingdom as an entire confidence between the King and people, which I shall by all means endeavour to preserve; and I shall look upon all persons to be my enemies who shall advise anything that may lessen it" (pp. 82–83).
The King prorogued Parliament on the 25th of April, 1694, and it did not meet again until the 18th of the following September.
On the 6th of May, 1694, William left Margate on board the Fubbs yacht, and landing the next day at the Hook of Holland, he proceeded to the Hague, spoke in the Assembly of the States of Holland and the States General, and then went to the Palace of Loo. He was at Breda on the 1st of June, and two days later he joined the allied forces at Bethlem (p. 168). He remained in command during the summer months, leaving the camp on September the 30th for Loo. Preparations were being made at the same time in England for the convoy to escort him on his return. "The King directs you," wrote Shrewsbury to the Admiralty, "to appoint a sufficient convoy to attend his Majesty in his return from Holland, and the Marquis of Carmarthen having requested he may command the said convoy, his Majesty would have him gratified in it, so it may make no alterations in any directions you may have already given" (p. 316). On the 23rd of October we read "The King has been detained in Holland by tempestuous and contrary winds" (p. 330). He ultimately embarked on the yacht William and Mary in the Maas, November the 8th, and, arriving at Margate, went, via Canterbury and Rochester, to Kensington. On the 12th instant he addressed both Houses of Parliament.
At the end of December the Queen was seized with the dreaded small-pox, and the attack proved fatal. Her death deprived William, not only of a devoted wife, but also of an able consort who had wisely governed the country during his absence. On the 3rd of May, 1695, the King again prorogued Parliament and went abroad, having appointed seven Lords Justices to manage the affairs of the realm in accordance with his wishes and instructions.
The minutes of the proceedings of the Lords Justices, calendared in this volume, furnish an unique record of the way in which the government was carried on, the details of administration being preserved more fully during their term of office than at any other period of history. They resolved on May the 20th that they should meet regularly three times a week (p. 474). It is clear that they were scrupulously careful to carry out the King's orders, and they referred all matters to him if they were in any doubt as to his wishes on a particular subject. A question arose as to the sealing of official documents, and on the 21st of May we find the following entry:—"Resolved it is necessary to have a common seal for warrants, orders and letters, and ordered that Mr. Harris, the King's engraver, be sent for to consider what shall be engraven on the seal; that the inscription round it shall be: The Seal of the Lords Justices of England; and that the King's pleasure therein be ascertained, the Lords Justices not thinking themselves otherwise sufficiently authorized to cause such a seal to be made" (p. 474). It was decided, three days later, that the design of the common seal should include a rose, with the inscription: "Sigillum custodum regni Angliœ" (p. 476).
The business transacted by the Lords Justices during the period covered by the present calendar included the provisioning of the fleet, the transport of troops, the suppression of treason, and such matters as the examination of petitions from condemned seamen and prisoners—notably from one whom his neighbours quaintly recommended as "an industrious, painful man" (p. 474). The plans for the naval war were also submitted to the approval of the Lords Justices. At the end of May they issued a proclamation for a national fast, "for imploring God's blessing and protection in the preservation of the King, and the prosperity of his arms on land and sea, to be observed in London and Westminster and within the Bills of Mortality on the 5th of June next; and in all other places throughout the kingdom on the 19th of June next" (p. 484). Another entry in the minutes reads: "The Habeas Corpus Act, though often proposed, never having been approved by the King, it is not fit to be done in his absence" (fn. 1) (p. 502).
The Lords Justices had some doubt in their minds as to the legality of their proroguing Parliament, and consulted various judges who gave their opinion that "their Excellencies might prorogue Parliament either in person or by commission, but rather advised they would do it themselves"; and the Lord Keeper was then desired to summon all the judges to a final consultation (p. 490). On the 11th of June an order was issued "that Mr. Johnson, Mr. Petit and one of the heralds inform the Lords Justices what they find in their books and records of the manner of former Protectors or Lords Justices coming to Parliament." Mr. Petit then presented a record of Edward III's time, when the Duke of Cornwall was guardian of the kingdom, and a Parliament was held by commissioners. "The opinion of the two chief justices was that the Lords Justices might cause a commission to be made, to what persons they thought fit, to prorogue the Parliament" (p. 493). The commission was accordingly signed on the 14th of June (p. 495), and on the 17th it was ordered that "the Lords of the Council be reminded that they are in the commission to prorogue Parliament" (p. 497).
During the King's absence, from May to November in 1694, the Queen managed the affairs of the country with her usual ability, and many references in the Calendar bear witness to her tact, to her unceasing vigilance, and to the close attention she gave to the details of government. For instance, we read in a letter from Sir John Trenchard to Admiral Russell:—"The Queen is fully satisfied with your care in hastening out the fleet. . . . . The King gave orders to the Admiralty for one month's dry provisions for the whole fleet. . . . . If you think more requisite, the Queen will give the necessary directions. The King was of opinion that if the credit you thought requisite for the Mediterranean squadron were to be immediately ordered, it might make the design too public, and therefore left it to be done by the Queen at the proper time . . ." (p. 149). The results of the Councils of War held by the Admirals were laid before the Queen (p. 188), who evidently studied the plans with careful interest, signifying her approval or asking for further information.
There are only a few (and these but indirect) references to the death of the Queen, which occurred on the 28th of December; they are, an order of the Privy Council, on the following day, for the requisite alterations in the church service (p. 361); a letter, apparently from the Duchess of Savoy, acknowledging the King's intimation of the news (p. 421); and a warrant for the payment of "extraordinary expenses for mourning for the Queen" incurred by the envoy extraordinary to the Emperor of Germany (p. 427). In January, 1695, Shrewsbury sent to Lord Montagu the names of four "poor women," to be included among the mourners at the Queen's funeral (p. 379).
In the middle of February, 1694, disaster befell a fleet of merchant vessels belonging to the Levant Company (pp. 68–69), bound for Turkey and the Mediterranean, and sailing from Cadiz under a convoy of men-of-war, commanded by Sir Francis Wheler. That convoys were a stern necessity in these perilous times, we learn from Wheler's letter to the Admiralty, dated on board the Sussex, January 19th, 1694. "I hear from all hands of abundance of French men-of-war cruizers up the Straits, who wait for the Turkey-Gibraltar ships. Of the French at Toulon I hear nothing but that they have a great many ships in these seas. I intend to hasten with all imaginable diligence up the Levant. . . . I humbly put your lordships in mind of our hard task with so few ships. Besides the honour of our country that lies upon us, the wealth of the merchants is extraordinary, and the enemy is as greedy of the prey as a hungry wolf, and Spanish dependence is most uncertain; so that if home, which ought to be first served, could spare any strength, here, I am sure, it is absolutely wanting" (pp. 43–44).
The Admiralty had sent instructions to Sir Francis on the 15th of January, to keep the Sussex with him, and orders were despatched to him on February 24th, both by sea and "overland by the Spanish post," to conduct the merchantmen "as high as the Straits," and there detaching a proper convoy, to return to Cadiz and await reinforcements before engaging the enemy (p. 28). Later instructions commanded his return to Plymouth as an escort to some Dutch and English ships waiting at Cadiz (p. 46).
These orders, however, were fated never to reach their destination. Tidings of the loss of Wheler's ships were sent to England by Rear-Admiral Sir John Neville from the Bay of Gibraltar, February 27th. "You will have heard," he wrote, "of the disaster that has befallen our squadron and the ships under convoy. We sailed hence on the 17th instant, and encountered a hard gale on the 18th. On the 19th, the hill of Gibraltar being W.S.W., about three leagues off, I saw fourteen sail of our fleet to windward of me, some under a main-sail, some under a mizen, some without masts. I hoisted our ensign to give them notice, saw the Gut, and stood away from it. Vice-Admiral Callenberg was one of those ships that answered my signal, and stood away after me; likewise did the other ships. They having the Bay of Gibraltar open, imprudently put in there, where they could not see the land to the westward, being very thick with much rain, a lee shore, a foul ground, and their sails blowing away like kites in the air. They were forced to let go their anchors, where many of them lost them, and most of them spoiled their cables, and some of them went ashore. Though I knew the danger they would run, it was night before I could get into the Bay, and did not anchor, but plied under the coast of Barbary till the 23rd, when I made the best of my way to Gibraltar, and anchored here on the 24th in the evening, when I heard the lamentable story of the loss and damage of our ships, and found great consternation among our people" (p. 42). The Sussex foundered in the storm with 550 men on board, including Sir Francis Wheler; the Cambridge ran ashore, the Serpent bombvessel foundered, and a number of merchant ships were lost or damaged (p. 43).
In April, 1694, there is a reference to proceedings "upon the petition of Arabella Wheler, widow of Sir Francis Wheler, showing that her husband was a younger brother, of no other estate but his employment, and a fortune of £4,000 which the petitioner brought him, which proves very much impaired by his two last voyages; praying maintenance for herself and her young children. The King promised some provision for the eldest of her sons, in compensation of the company in the guards, bought with the deceased's own money" (p. 105) This petition was referred to the Admiralty, who reported, on the 23rd of May, that "the rules of the Navy make an allowance of bounty money to such persons only whose relations are slain in fight against the enemy; the widow of Sir Francis Wheler can therefore have no claim to such relief" (p. 147).
The attack on Brest in 1694 was in the mind of the Admiralty, long before it actually took place, and information concerning the harbour, and the enemy's fleet there, was received from time to time from French captives, scouting vessels and other sources (pp. 31, 74, 103, 113). On the 24th of April instructions were sent to Admiral Russell that if the French fleet should be in the harbour of Brest or at Belle Isle, he should attempt to burn and destroy it, "or in any way to annoy it." If the whole fleet had gone to sea, Russell was authorized to go in search of it, but not beyond the latitude of Cape Finisterre, unless he received reliable intelligence that the enemy had gone into the Mediterranean, in which case he was to send a squadron to engage them in decisive action (p. 112). The following day the Commissioners of the Treasury were directed to allow Admiral Russell such sums of money, not exceeding £2,000, as he might expend in endeavouring to gain intelligence of the enemy (p. 114).
On the 27th of April an Englishman, who had been captured by the French, sent the following information to the Admiralty:—"On the 1st of April I departed from Brest to St. Malo by land, at which time there lay in the harbour of Brest twenty sail of French men-of-war, ready for sailing, only waiting for the arrival of their victuals from Bordeaux, which were hourly expected. By what information I could get, they were designed for the Mediterranean on the news of the loss of some of our fleet there by storm. The ships of their fleet were from 70 to 50 guns. Their great ships were in no preparation, and, by what I could learn, did not design to fit out this summer. Count de Chateaurenaud commands the fleet bound out. From Brest to St. Malo the King of France was drawing down his forces to guard his sea coasts. . . . . . . Admiral Tourville I saw at Brest, and was informed he was bound to Toulon by land, to order affairs there" (p. 118).
On the 6th of May Rear-Admiral John Neville wrote from Cadiz Bay to Sir John Trenchard:—"At a Council of War held . . . . the 2nd of March, it was resolved we should sail for Cadiz with the first opportunity (Gibraltar being a place where we could not defend ourselves), leaving our lame ships . . . to follow us as soon as they were ready. Having had several reports of the Toulon fleet being out, with other circumstances such as . . . a list of a strong squadron of ships coming from Brest, sent by the Dutch envoy at the Court of Madrid to Vice-Admiral Callenburgh, by order of the States, made every man of opinion of going to Cadiz, until further intelligence of the enemy's motion or strength, or fresh orders from England were received" (p. 125).
The design of the French was to effect a junction of their two fleets from Brest and Toulon; that of the two English fleets, commanded by Russell and Neville, to prevent this junction if possible. An intercepted letter, dated from Paris, May the 10th, states: "The vessels from Brest had not left on the 3rd of this month. We afterwards heard they left on the 7th . . . . . If the enemy [i.e. Neville's squadron] are waiting at Cadiz, it will prevent a junction with the ships in the Mediterranean. There can be no doubt that their object is to forward the design on Catalonia, where they hope to effect the reduction of Spain more quickly than from any other part. This plan is not doubted here; they even say Palamos is already besieged, as a preliminary to an attack on Barcelona" (p. 130). The departure of the French fleet from Brest is corroborated in a letter to Russell from the British Consul at Genoa, who stated that it sailed at 3 a.m. on the 7th, thirty-one men-of-war, bound for the Straits (p. 137).
An urgent letter was, by the King's direction, sent from the Hague on May 8/18. "By all advices from France, it is believed the ships intended from Brest for the Mediterranean have already gone out, so that the English squadron intended for the Straits should be hastened away." The ships that were to be sent from the river to Portsmouth were to be despatched with all expedition (p. 139). "The King presses very earnestly for the departure of the squadron for the States," wrote Trenchard to Admiral Russell, "but I think it is not possible till the rest of the fleet joins you" (p. 141).
The Admiralty evidently considered that, the main body of the French fleet having departed, the time was ripe for the long-designed attack upon Brest; on the 11th of May, therefore, Sir Cloudesley Shovel was ordered to receive on board the forces under Lieut.-General Talmash, and then to sail to join Admiral Russell (p. 130). Another intercepted letter, apparently from a Jacobite, dated from St. Malo, May 27th, relates that: "King James keeps still at St. Germains, does not stir in action. We have about 36 sail of men-of-war at sea, gone to meet the rest that are coming from Toulon through the Straits. All our great ships lie at Brest ready fitted. The English and Dutch fleets lie in the Channel very strong, not yet attempting anything worth time. All these coasts are prepared for them, if they should attempt any invasion. They attempted this town last winter, but did no damage at all, though then but ordinarily fortified. Since then it has been made impregnable" (p. 154).
Meanwhile the orders sent to Russell to pursue the French had not been carried out, and his explanation is contained in a letter to the King written from St. Helens, May 24th. "I am so afraid your Majesty should conclude the ships, designed for the Mediterranean, not being gone, proceeds from any delay on my side, that I rather venture to trouble you with a short account of the matter, than lie under the mortification of your Majesty's apprehending me faulty." Russell then explained that he set sail on the 3rd of May with 18 English ships, but the necessary store-ships and bomb-vessels had not arrived at Portsmouth. Having joined the Dutch, who made up a squadron of 30 ships, he sailed into the Soundings. When he had been at sea three days, he received the news that the French had sailed from Brest. He then returned to St. Helens to embark the troops and completely victual the ships, but when all was in readiness, a further delay was caused by contrary winds.
"Considering how long the French have been gone," he continued, "I should be extremely sorry for your Majesty's service that a fleet should go so far to seek an enemy, or have the misfortune to do no service by the enemy performing what they designed, and then retire to their harbour. I should in this receive another mortification as to myself, not being fond of taking such a voyage but out of the hopes of rendering your Majesty some service, which I still hope may happen" (pp. 147–148).
The French fleet succeeded in evading the English and reached the Straits, for on the 2nd of June (N.S.) the Spanish Ambassador wrote to Queen Mary: "News has arrived by way of Corunna that, on the 14th of May, fifty to sixty French ships were seen in the Straits, flying the captain's and admiral's standard, making for Barcelona, to attack that place both by sea and land; report says they were to be reinforced by 30 ships from Toulon" (p. 149). A letter from Toulon which, coming to Trenchard's hands, was forwarded to Admiral Russell, states that "no one thinks much of the siege of Barcelona, but very much of the siege of Palamos and of Girone. . . . . . Fears are entertained at Brest that the enemy may come and burn the vessels lying there disarmed, to the number of 30 and more, for the squadron of 34 that left Brest were not all from that place, but included ships from Rochefort and Port Louis. M. de Vauban is taking measures to provide for the safety of the place, and will probably remain there all the summer" (p. 141). Another letter, dated 16/26 May, also forwarded to Russell, is significant:—"The French Court are apprehensive we have a design either to besiege or bomb Brest, and have therefore added six battalions of foot to the garrison, and M. Vauban, the famous engineer, is ordered to stay there all the summer" (p. 149). Well might the French Court be "apprehensive" and take precautions, when the English plans were being betrayed to Louis XIV. by William's enemies in England.
On the 28th of May Trenchard sent to Russell another intercepted letter, stating that the English had bombarded several forts in Brest, without much result. "The last affair at Brest has made them look to the improvement of the fortifications there, and to the planting of fresh batteries. M. de Vauban is occupied with the whole of that coast" (fn. 2) (p. 155). The following day Admiral Russell directed Lord Berkeley to proceed to Brest, with the land-soldiers under the command of Lieut.-General Talmash (p. 157).
The actual attack upon the town took place on the 7th and 8th of June, 1694. The story of the defeat is told in detail by several documents now calendared. Lord Berkeley's despatch to Sir John Trenchard is dated at Camaret Bay, June the 8th. "I send this by the Dreadnought, which has Mr. Talmash on board," he wrote, and concluded his account of the disaster by saying:—"People in London will perhaps blame us for not still attempting to go into Brest, but if they were here, and saw how far the enemy throw their bombs, I am confident they would be of another opinion, especially when they consider what little effect five mortars, ill-fitted and attended, would have upon Brest, when in all probability they have at least six times that number" (pp. 168–169).
Further information is contained in a letter to the King from the Duke of Shrewsbury, dated June the 15th, and his enclosure, "the relation of Captain Nathaniel Green," a volunteer with Lieutenant-General Talmash in the expedition to Brest. The news of the death of Talmash and of the defeat had been brought that morning by Captain Green, who said "he had a message to deliver to the Queen, at which he desired none should be present but myself. I immediately took him," added Shrewsbury, "to her Majesty, where he spoke much to the effect he has here signed" (p. 182).
This very detailed account gives some interesting particulars unrecorded by Macaulay and Smollett. Of the landing of the English troops, Captain Green relates:—"Every colonel had his regular orders to sustain each other. But when we came to the shore the army saw three batteries, one on the right hand shore, and two on the left hand, besides three trenches within the land on our front. The first trench was lined with men, the second empty, and the third full, with a battery over it to cover all, and for further strength one hundred and fifty musketeers were covered behind a sand rock about ten yards distant from the land rock. This sudden and prodigious appearance of strength made our men not very forward to land" (p. 183). When the troops had disembarked, and had suffered a sweeping fire from the enemy, the wounded general headed his men a second time to take the sand rock, "but was repulsed by the said rock and the batteries, with the loss of most of these men, and then retreated again to the rock, calling out for more men to land; but a body of horse being seen to march towards the shore, the General, by great entreaty, was persuaded to go off and get into a boat." The General came to the well boat side, and was lifted in, "but being deserted by most of the seamen, and aground, the boat could not be got off. A boat of Lord Berkeley's being near, Captain Green promised the men £5 to take in the General, which they did, and by the time they were 6 or 8 boat's lengths from the shore, the horse came down, and cut off all that were left, or that had landed afterward."
The narration concludes with Talmash's dying assertion that "it was impossible to have served their Majesties better, unless he had been better obeyed, because none of the general officers landed with him; but that, apprehending it would have been to little purpose to have landed more men, Lord Macclesfield acted as prudently in beating a retreat as my Lord Cutts did undutifully in not going on" (pp. 183–184).
Meanwhile, Admiral Russell had set sail for Spain on the 6th of June (p. 175). On the 1st of July he wrote to Trenchard:— "Hearing nothing of the French being between Lagos and Cadiz, I ordered Nevill to join me, which he did on the 30th ult. with eight English, and Vice-Admiral Calemberg with eight Dutch ships, so that we are now together sixty-three ships of the line. The Spaniards came to sea the same night with nine sail, but as yet I have not seen them. I hear the French are seventy men-of-war, and that they lie in a line from Alsaques to Barcelona. I will not lose a moment's time to get to them. If they design to stay us, and be the number reported, we may soon come to a deciding blow, so that when all are killed that are to be killed, the rest may return home before cold weather and Michaelmas storms come in, which I apprehend for these three deck ships" (p. 207).
These hopes of an encounter with the enemy were disappointed; contrary winds frustrated the designs of the English ships, and fogs delayed them. On the 13th of July Russell wrote, from off the coast of Carthagena:— "The French have gone to the Isle of Aires [Iles d'Hyères]; they will certainly disarm their great ships and send squadrons into the Levant, or else go with their whole fleet off Malta, where they know we are not in a condition to follow them. As I wrote you before I left England, I shall return without being able to do any service, which will be a great mortification to me. Had I come out a month sooner, I might have pursued them from place to place. This voyage, and no prospect of doing any service, has almost broken my heart" (p. 224).
On the 24th of July he again wrote to the King:— "I am sorry this letter does not bring your Majesty the news of my having met the French fleet, but contrary winds have pursued me from the time I first left England, which has made my passage so long that the French, upon the news of my coming, have retired with their fleet from Barcelona to the Isles of Aress, which makes me conclude they resolve not to fight; though I am not a man who takes delight in that recreation, I confess my hopes were that, in these seas, they would have faced me, where the advantage to them must be great, we being so far from England. I hope you are pleased to believe I have done what was in my power; it is a great mortification to me that I should be forced to return home without rendering you some service from this long voyage; the season of the year and the shortness of the provisions in the fleet will compel me to make no stay here. How that will suit with the Spaniards' designs (if they have any), I know not, but I am sure it is for your service to have the great ships in safety before the winter weather comes in" (pp. 235–236).
We hear little of the progress made at this time in Catalonia by Marshal Noailles, and of the retreat of the Spanish, who surrendered Palamos, St. Elome, Gironne, Ostalric and Castle Folet to the superior strength of the French. The designs of the invaders upon Barcelona were, however, frustrated by the appearance of the English fleet. The French ships sought the shelter of Toulon Harbour, and it was then thought advisable by the Admiralty that Russell should remain at Cadiz through the winter.
This decision was not reached without much deliberation. On the 2nd of August the Committee resolved that "the continuing of Mr. Russell in the Straits cannot be thought of unless the Dutch resolve to keep their men-of-war there likewise, and to refit them with stores sent from Holland, for without that assistance the French will be superior to us in force. The supply of the fleet at Cadiz will be hazardous, by reason of the uncertainty of the weather at that time of year, besides the danger of being intercepted by the enemy. If the King should be inclined to have Mr. Russell remain in the Straits, the admiral should be allowed to use his own discretion of its possibility in the light of facts known to him on the spot. It is the opinion of seamen here that there should be no delay in sending orders to Mr. Russell whether to stay or return" (p. 250).
Shrewsbury reported to the King, the following day, that "everybody agreed the decision ought to be left to Mr. Russell, who alone could judge, whether, with the assistance proposed and promised from hence, the fleet might with reasonable safety winter at Cadiz;" and gave in detail the arguments for and against the proposal (pp. 250–252). It was finally decided that the fleet should remain there, and minute instructions, signed by the Queen, were sent to Admiral Russell, on the 14th of August. The decision proved a wise one, for it kept the French fleet powerless in the Mediterranean, guarded the coasts of Spain, and fulfilled the diplomatic hope that it might have "a good effect upon the neutral princes of Italy."
Russell, however, on receipt of the Queen's orders, appeared to be filled with dismay. It may be open to question, perhaps, whether the pessimism which characterized his letters at this period is to be attributed only to the disadvantages under which he laboured, in respect of storms and contrary winds, and the inefficiency of his ships and provisions; or whether secret Jacobite leanings undermined his allegiance to the King? His letter dated off Malaga, the 5th September, is as follows:—"I have received the King's orders for wintering the fleet at Cadiz. It is needless to tell you I was never so surprized in my life, for, besides the little prospect of any service here, I confess my chiefest thoughts are the security of England.
"I suppose the King is well assured the fortifications at Cadiz will be put in condition to defend his fleet, and that the present governor will not deliver up the same to the enemy, should they appear. I believe so large a proportion of stores as may be thought necessary to dispatch from England will be useless, for, unless I find the worm eats the bottom of the ships, I will not think of careening any of the three-decks, and no more than needs must of the seventy and eighty-gunned ships. Provisions will be necessary, the slop clothes in good plenty. God knows what the men will do this winter, being one half of them naked; and if the ships with provisions should miscarry, all Spain cannot find enough to keep us alive."
Russell then protested that he thought himself under a great hardship to be sent to the Mediterranean with the Dutch, whose provisions would not hold out beyond September At a Council of War held at Barcelona it was suggested that the fleet should return immediately to England, but this Russell negatived, knowing that the French would avail themselves of the opportunity to become masters of the Spanish coast. The expected provisions had not arrived. "Had we depended on that," he declared, "we must have starved."
"Be pleased to remember," he continued, "that if these ships are not home next year before August, one half of them will go to the bottom of the sea. It is an easy matter to give orders, but, believe me, I find it very difficult to execute them."
Then his courage seemed to sink to its lowest ebb:—"The care and trouble I have upon me is too great for a man of my weak capacity to go through with; I am at present under a doubt with myself whether it is better to die, or to have the continual plague of providing necessaries for the fleet upon me for twelve months longer. I am not able to undergo it; my health will not admit of it. Upon my word, I would not be obliged, as I have been this summer to live seven months on shipboard, without going ashore, for fifty thousand pounds a year, and I have had the plague of one (sic), and the pleasure of spending my own estate. It is not many men serve on these terms, but you may be assured, while I do serve, it shall be with such diligence and faithfulness as I am sure is expected from me, and my own principle obliges me to."
Russell then stated that he called a Council of War again to talk over "so preposterous a proceeding," and concluded his letter:—"Do not flatter yourself that, should the French get by with any squadron, I can be ready to follow them. It is impossible I can, at sea, put myself in a condition to proceed to England at this time of the year, as they can from Toulon, whence they go prepared, and well fitted to undertake so long and dangerous a voyage; nor have I with me ten ships fit to be sent home in the month of October, but I had ordered matters so that we should have come home safe this month" (pp. 292–294).
Sir John Trenchard received another letter from Admiral Russell, written, in a similar strain, from Alicante on the 21st of September:—"Since writing to you last, I have been ill of a miserable fever, which for four days did not allow me to lay my eyes together. On arrival at Alicante, I had just strength enough to sign an order to Vice-Admiral Aylmer to sail pursuant to what a Council of War should resolve, and to take care of the fleet, myself coming on shore in a very weak condition. I have been in the country seven days, and am now, I hope, past danger."
"Is it considered," Russell demanded, later on in the same letter, "that we have provisions only from hand to mouth? I am not able to complete any ship to perform a voyage for England; but, in case the victuals do arrive and I were able to have a squadron victualled for returning home, I dread the consequence of their doing it in October or November.
"I believe this is the first time a general made so insignificant a figure, that his judgment was not thought necessary to be asked, in so material a point; but commands are given, and I shall obey. Pray let care be taken for slop clothes for the marine soldiers also. Not any of their officers are here. I shall appoint Captain Wright to act as master-attendant at Cadiz. We are also in great need of a sufficient number of men to be sent to the fleet against the next year" (pp. 312–313).
On the 9th of October Trenchard delivered the Queen's orders to the Admiralty, that stores for Russell's fleet should be prepared with as much speed as possible (p. 325). A reinforcement of 2,000 men was being sent to Cadiz at the end of December (p. 361). Through the winter of 1694 and the spring and summer of 1695 the English fleet held the Mediterranean. In May, Sir George Rooke proposed to the Admiralty that a light squadron only should be kept there, to impede the enemy's trade and to "search out our own;" a squadron that could get back to England before the enemy, should they succeed in passing the Straits. This was objected to, on the grounds that the designs for securing Catalonia and being masters of the Mediterranean would, in that case, have to be abandoned (p. 480). Meanwhile some of Russell's ships were sadly in need of repair, and the King had been informed that "twelve or fourteen were in danger of dropping to pieces if they did not come home in time" (p. 483).
Orders "signifying the King's pleasure for Mr. Russell's staying with the fleet" were despatched to Spain on the 11th of June, 1695 (p. 492). Later on in the same month we read that Russell had twenty English and fifteen Dutch ships still in good condition (p. 502); the "great and weak vessels" were to be sent home, and fresh ships were presently to be despatched as reinforcements. The Calendar has no record of Admiral Russell's fruitless attempts on Marseilles and Toulon.
During the summer of 1694 the rest of the fleet turned its attention to various ports on the French coast. On the 18th of June, Lord Berkeley wrote to Sir John Trenchard:—"After four hours discoursing I send you the result of the Council of War. We believe Calais, Dieppe, Havre de Grace, and some other places of less consideration may be without much difficulty bombarded" (p. 190).
It was decided at another Council of War, held ten days later, to sail to Dieppe and bombard it (p. 204), and Lord Berkeley wrote on the 6th of July, from off Dungeness, "I am just getting under sail, and intend immediately for Dieppe Bay" (p. 213). The English ships arrived on the 8th of July, but adverse winds prevented their taking up a position for throwing bombs until the 12th instant (p. 215). Then the town and castle were partly shattered, and a fire broke out and raged fiercely, until a portion of the town was reduced to ashes (pp. 223–4). "We sailed from Dieppe on the afternoon of the 14th inst.," wrote Lord Berkeley, "and just as we sailed had the satisfaction to see the Jesuits' steeple tumble. If we had been in the town, and nobody to oppose us, we could not have burnt it better."
The fleet then proceeded to Havre de Grace. "We found it much more difficult to do our business here than at Dieppe, for our great ships were forced to anchor a long way off, and our small vessels, that went in, to haul on and off every half tide. But yesterday, about three o'clock, we began to play our bombs, and set the town on fire in several places, so that we judge there may now be about a third of the town consumed, and the fire still burning. . . . . . . Had it not been ill weather to-day, we still could not have fired many more bombs, for our vessels are extremely shattered, and most of the mortars run so, that they will be of little use till they are recast. I will keep the fleet out as long as I can, and at least give them the alarm at La Hogue and Cherbourg, and throw some bombs at the latter. There is no thinking of an attempt on St. Malo without new mortars. . . . . . . In the burning of these towns I have found all the officers very forward in their several employments, and also the men who were sent in to sustain and help them. Captain Benbow has been of extraordinary use to me in placing the bomb-vessels" (p. 229). Towards the end of July a council of war, held in Havre de Grace road, resolved that the fleet should return to St. Helen's, in order to refit (p. 232).
At this time a French fleet, commanded by Du Bart, was lying at Dunkirk (pp. 246–7 and 248). In August Sir John Trenchard sent orders to Lord Berkeley that he should endeavour to burn or destroy the ships there (pp. 254, 260, 266); but meanwhile the English fleet was suffering from stormy weather. Vice-Admiral Hopson wrote, on the 18th of August:—"Du Bart still lies with his squadron in Dunkirk Road, and I believe will not stir till he sees us beaten to pieces by the continual bad weather we have upon this coast. . . . . . . Several of the Dutch ships have lost their anchors. I hope their lordships will not let us lie here much longer, for we can do no service, and Du Bart is laughing at us" (p. 271). The Admiralty ordered reinforcements to be sent (p. 275), and Hopson was joined by Lord Berkeley and Sir Cloudesley Shovel; but Dunkirk was found to be strongly fortified, and some difficulty was experienced in getting the Dutch pilots needed (pp. 284–5).
A letter written from Ostend, on the 6th of September, gave more hopeful information:—"Two Englishmen, who have just ransomed their ships out of Dunkirk, say that Captain or Admiral [Du] Bart is taking in his guns and his beer, but his design I know not. Captain Cutter wrote yesterday to Mr. Matthews at Nieuport, who says there is no such thing; but that does not at all alter my opinion of the case. I am apt to believe he will lie in the road to hinder the bombarding of the place, which they much fear. 'The Pasty Tower' is cracked in two or three places; if that were cast down, the town could easily be thrown level, and all the men-of-war (of which there are fourteen or sixteen), with all the ships in the basin and harbour (which is full), would easily be destroyed, and would be of much more consequence to England than two Dieppes, for then I reckon we should have a pretty quiet trade to the north" (p. 296).
Some plans proposed for the attack upon Dunkirk are given fully in a letter from Sir Cloudesley Shovel, dated September the 7th; but though we hear that the English bomb-vessels filled the French with "very dismal apprehensions" (p. 306), little damage was actually effected, nor did the attempts to bombard Calais result in any great measure of success (pp. 310–311).
The following summer plans were again made that the fleet in the Channel, commanded by Lord Berkeley, should bombard Calais, Dunkirk, and some other places on the French coast (pp. 475, 478). However, on the 1st of June, 1695, Lord Berkeley wrote:—"The longer I think of the business of Dunkirk, the worse I like it. . . . . I think it will be running an extreme hazard with our ships, with little or no prospect of success. . . ." (p. 484); and he gave his reasons fully.
A fortnight later he was planning an attack upon St. Malo and Granville, and wrote:—"Though we are not sure of destroying this place (i.e. St. Malo), yet the Council of War pitch upon it, believing that the very alarm we shall give them, and the preparation we shall force them to, though we should not succeed, would be no small annoyance to them" (p. 496). On the 17th of June the Admiralty proposed that Lord Berkeley should make an attempt on St. Malo, simultaneously with an attack upon Dunkirk to be made by Admiral Allemonde (pp. 497–499). However, the Dutch "would not hear of so much as viewing Dunkirk" without the English ships, so that thoughts of Dunkirk were for a time laid aside and attention was concentrated on St. Malo. On the 24th of June, 1695, Lord Berkeley anchored off St. Helen's; but contrary winds, continuing, obliged him for a while to relinquish any attempt on the French coast (pp. 505 and 513).
The inhabitants of the Channel Islands, as might be expected, apprehended danger from the French fleet. A barque reaching Portland from Guernsey, March the 26th, 1694, reported that the inhabitants were in "great consternation," expecting the enemy to attack them every day (p. 80). The defences of the islands were strengthened (pp. 39, 55, 373, 512), but no attempt appears to have been made upon them.
From a careful study of the Calendar we may glean some idea of the feeling existing between the English and Dutch officers of the allied fleet. Councils of War, composed of the officers of both nations, were held from time to time (p. 284), and on the whole, perhaps, greater harmony prevailed than might have been expected; but now and again there are instances of friction and jealousy on points of prestige; these the Admiralty smoothed over as best it could. There are several instances of the Dutch "scrupling to obey any other flag-officer than the admiral of a squadron" (p. 266), and the King had "to be put in mind of giving orders to the admiral of the Dutch to obey the admiral of the English fleet" (p. 94). Sir Cloudesley Shovel and Mr. Meisters had some disagreement as to the plans for attacking Dunkirk (p. 298), and Lord Berkeley's views were not quite in accordance with those of Admiral Allemonde during June, 1695.
Among the minor incidents of the war an attack by the French upon Brighton is recorded in May, 1694. "Our poor town of Brighthelmstone, in Sussex, hath been this day suddenly surprized with four French privateers," wrote an inhabitant, on the 19th instant, "and pestered therewith ever since 11 o'clock a.m." He proceeds to state that they had not done any great damage, though they were shooting over the town; but being reinforced by two other ships, their attitude became more menacing, as though their intention were to burn and plunder the place. "We are all ordered to our own defence, but here is our misery, we have nothing to maintain it with; and our county parliamenteers are such friends to the French interest, that though we have addressed them, in times seasonable, for our relief with suitable magazines, yet they turn a deaf ear to us, and no supply is granted. Every one is ordered (though alas! we are very naked) to be on our own defence this night, if so be that by appearances we may drive off this umbrage of ruin" (p. 145).
On the 11th of June a warrant was sent to the Earl of Romney that out of the ordnance stores there should be issued "six demy culverings and four sakers, mounted on travelling carriages, and five barrels of powder and shot," for the defence of the town of Brighthelmstone (p. 174).
The papers now calendared do not throw much light on the campaign on the Continent—a fact easily accounted for, when we remember that the King himself was present at the seat of war. Moreover, the existing documents have been calendared quite shortly, as they will be fully dealt with, hereafter, in the Calendar of State Papers, Foreign. A few letters bearing upon the subject may, however, be noted, and amongst them two from Lord Galway, dated at Turin, May the 25th and 28th, concerning the negociations there; letters to the King from Baron Heiden (pp. 164, 174, 175, 195), and from other commanders of the allied forces (pp. 187, 242). (fn. 3)
The Calendar contains little or nothing relative to affairs in Scotland, until the spring of 1695. The "account of the present temper of the Parliament and nation" (pp. 465–468) shows that there was much opposition and disaffection to the King in the country.
The important undertaking in Scotland at this time was the enquiry into the affair of Glencoe, the object of which enquiry was to vindicate the honour of the King, upon which a shadow had been cast by the apparent treachery of the massacre two years previously. On the 29th of April, 1695, a warrant was issued to the Marquis of Tweeddale and others, to enquire into the slaughter of the MacDonalds in Glencoe, in 1692; the enquiry made by the Duke of Hamilton, deceased, and others, in 1693, being defective (p. 446). This was urged with much feeling in the Parliament (p. 500). The commissioners made a careful enquiry, and submitted their report to the King in June (p. 501), and soon after, communicated it to the Parliament of Scotland; whereupon:—"It being represented that the enemies of the Government, both of this and the neighbouring kingdoms, had now these three years thrown this blood upon it, the Parliament unanimously agreed that the King's instructions in January, 1692, did contain a warrant for mercy to all the Highlanders, without exception, who should still take the oath of allegiance and submit, though the first of the said month of January, being the day prefixed by the proclamation of indemnity, was passed; and therefore these instructions did contain no warrant. for the execution of the Glencoe men made in February thereafter. The words of the last article of the King's instructions of the 16th of January— to wit, 'if Glencoe can be well separated from the rest' etc., following an article that orders mercy for all who will swear and submit, neither were, nor can be, understood by any man in any other sense than that if those of Glencoe will not swear and submit, they will be the fittest men to be made examples, being otherwise obnoxious to the law for thieving " (p. 504).
Among other references to the business transacted by the Scotch Parliament we find one to the passing of the Poll Act, on June the 28th (p. 508); to an act in favour of any company that should be established for carrying on a foreign trade (p. 503); and to four acts: upon the address of the ministers; against blasphemy and profanity; to put down the Saturday and Monday markets, which obliged people to travel on the Sabbath, and to forbid any ministers, save those of the legal establishment, to baptize children or perform the marriage ceremony (p. 508).
Turning now to Ireland, it is clear that the three Lords Justices, Lord Capell, Sir Cyril Wych and William Duncombe, had no easy task in administering the affairs of the country, for there was a strong tide of Jacobite feeling throughout the country, and much lawlessness to restrain. A letter from the Lords Justices, replying to an order from England for "suppressing the rapparees," reveals some of the difficulties that had to be faced.
"The prosecution of these Tories," wrote the Lords Justices, "hath been one of our principal cares. . . . . . At our first coming over, in imitation of what had been done by former chief governors, we issued a proclamation for apprehending and committing the priest of the parish, where they were last 'out upon their keeping' and their relations and other harbourers and abettors, until either such Tories or rapparees should be taken or killed, or the parties discharged by law." A detachment of militia was usually sent to apprehend the offenders, whose trial was carried out at the earliest opportunity after capture. These measures had not altogether quieted the country; in the County Cork especially the justices of the peace complained that "while the mountains are so extensive, the fastnesses so strong and numerous, and the whole people (gentry, commonalty and clergy) their abettors," small parties of soldiers were quite insufficient to subdue the rebels.
"After all," the Lords Justices concluded, "as there ever have been, so we fear there always will be Tories in several parts of this kingdom. It is not to be wondered that, after a war wherein many have been totally undone, and others fear being dragged into prison and languishing there, for debt or causes of action arisen during the war, many have gotten a loose way of living, and cannot betake themselves to a laborious, honest calling; some perhaps receive private encouragement from abroad, or concealed enemies at home, still to alarm the Government, and the country being so ill planted, there are more of this sort of rogue now than at other times" (pp. 276–278).
The low state of the revenue made it almost impossible for the Lords Justices to furnish the levy money of the regiments which the King ordered to be raised in Ireland. "If his Majesty should insist," they wrote in February, 1694, "upon the sudden payment of these arrears, it is almost impossible for us to obey; we live from hand to mouth, and have but necessary subsistence; there is no money to be borrowed, nor are we able to give security" (p. 41).
A letter to the King from Lord Inchiquin, dated March 8th, 1694, concerning the urgent need for the fortifying of Kinsale, further illustrates this scarcity:—"I have pressed the Lords Justices for the rest of the money. They answered me that there was scarce enough in the Treasury to pay the subsistence of the army, and that none could be spared for any other use" (p. 54).
Early in 1694 some quaint proposals were put forward for the improvement of the revenue (pp. 12–13).
The constant raising of troops for William's foreign campaign was a heavy burden on the country, and left it ill-garrisoned. "We hope," wrote the Lords Justices, "his Majesty will consider that when these . . . . regiments are gone, the kingdom will be very naked" (p. 33).
From time to time appeals were made to the Admiralty for cruisers to guard the coasts and harbours from the depredations of French privateers (p. 237). The need for well-maintained forts was set forth in a letter from the Lords Justices to Trenchard (p. 94), in which they said of Bantry:—"For near 20 miles there are no Protestant inhabitants. This is a den of Tories who molest the country round about; here the Popish natives harbour them, and, corresponding with the French privateers, betray to them merchant ships, so that within these two years above twenty ships have been taken from thence by the privateers. The wisdom of former times built a fort in this place, by which that wild and rebellious country was kept in awe by a small garrison. And the Irish, when it came into their hands in 1698, demolished it, that it might be no longer a bridle upon them. The rebuilding of this fort nearer the sea than it was will secure those ships which shelter there, prevent this correspondence with France, unkennel those thieves that from hence do so much mischief, and every year save more than the whole charge will come to."
The King's wish that the Irish Parliament should meet prior to the English Session in 1694, was frustrated by a long delay on the part of the Lords Justices in signifying their opinion (p. 235). Shrewsbury accordingly wrote to William on the 24th of July, as follows:—" All the Lords that were present at the reading of these letters" (i.e., from Lord Capell and the two other Lords Justices) "agreed that a parliament was necessary for the welfare of Ireland, and almost all were of opinion that, would the time allow it now, it were advisable to call and try one, there being good grounds to hope they would meet and act with good temper; but I must observe to you that these two Lords Justices have not contented themselves with giving a lame opinion, as if the parliament will not act to your service; but, lest they should be tried, have artificially deferred the giving that opinion till it is no more possible to make the experiment before next Spring. To their observations I have one of my own to add: that if these two gentlemen are to conduct this parliament when it does meet (who have given their opinions that it cannot succeed), even they will have address enough to order it so as infallibly to make good their advice" (p. 236).
The disfavour with which Sir Cyril Wyche and Mr. Duncombe were then regarded in England was manifest in the following May, 1695, when Shrewsbury intimated to Lord Capell that the King had signed the warrant for preparing a commission to constitute him Lord Deputy and Chief Governor of Ireland, "with all the powers of a Lord Lieutenant" (p. 461). Capell received the warrant on the 27th instant (p. 480), and a further warrant of June the 7th allotted to him the sum of £6,593 6s. 8d. per annum, and also "such a sum as the fees of the licences for exporting wool shall fall short of the annual income which the same produced, according to the average of the last seven years of the reign of Charles II." (p. 490).
Detailed instructions were sent to the new Lord Deputy as to the management of affairs in Ireland (pp. 455–459). These related to the filling of vacant livings, collecting the revenue, the army, the suppression of duels, the transportation of wool, and various other matters. One clause runs:—" (28) You are to take care that the Articles granted to Galway, Limerick, or any other place upon their surrender, be construed according to their strict meaning upon all questions or doubts which may arise, without allowing any favour to the persons comprehended in them, or extending them further than in justice and honour you are obliged to do." A long list of names is given on p. 350 of persons who claimed to be within the Articles of Galway and Limerick, and whose cases were to be examined (vide also p. 35).
We have referred already to the Jacobite intrigues in Ireland which threatened the Government. On the 10th of December a proclamation was issued in Dublin offering a reward for the apprehension, dead or alive, of a number of rebels who had fled to the mountains and other places, where they "stood upon their keeping" (p. 353). On the 16th of March, 1695, the Lord Deputy and Council of Ireland, "in view of a barbarous and detestable conspiracy carried on by Papists," passed a resolution to maintain and defend King William and his Government "according to the late Succession Act" (p. 405). It had been proposed in the previous month to "doubly tax the Irish who would not take the oath and subscribe the declaration" (p. 392). Many difficulties arose at this time as to the tenure of land, for after "the happy rout at the Boyne" (p. 211) a large number of Jacobites were attainted and outlawed, and their forfeited lands were granted out to William's adherents. Much land came in this way to the Crown, and on the 17th of January, 1694, the Lords Justices were bidden to prepare a new commission for inspection into the forfeitures. It was proposed at one time that these forfeited lands should be used as security to raise a million of money towards the charge of the war (p. 369). However, several of the Jacobites, ousted from their possessions, pleaded that they had "lived peaceably" since the battle of the Boyne. Their case was submitted to the Lords Justices, and occasionally the outlawries were reversed. Details of a prolonged case are given in March 1695 (pp. 432–4) against "several Irish belonging to the sept of the Brenans," who before "the late happy revolution" had been a terror to the English settlers by their robberies and lawlessness, and whose lands had been forfeited to the King by their attainder.
A letter from the Lords Justices in February 1694 related a great misfortune which had recently happened in Limerick, rendering the condition of the people there "very deplorable." A large quantity of gunpowder was stored in an old tower, the foundations of which, being washed by the sea at every tide, were so much impaired that suddenly the tower fell. In the fall, 218 barrels of powder exploded, many people were killed and wounded, and all the houses in the vicinity were shattered. The condition of the inhabitants had been very low before this calamity occurred, and it had so cast them down that their condition seemed hopeless, and they implored the Lords Justices to lay their pitiful case before the King, in hope of his charity and assistance (pp. 34 and 35).
In ecclesiastical matters, the chief event recorded in the calendar is the suspension and deprivation of the Bishop of Down and Connor, on charges of "simoniacal pacts, great management, and false certificates of subscriptions to let papists into the Church," (p. 69). He was succeeded in August 1694 by Dr. Foley (p. 268), on whose death, in May 1695, Lord Capell proposed Dr. Walkinton as his successor, adding "he is well-related and beloved, which will enable him to support his Majesty's title to the bishopric, which is still disputed by the deprived bishop" (p. 480). The Queen appears to have granted pensions by letters patent to a number of Presbyterian ministers in Ulster. After her death they appealed for "payment of the arrears and the continuance of their pensions, without which few of them could well subsist among their people," and Lord Capell applied to Lord Shrewsbury for an order that they should be paid by the Government of Ireland (p. 391).
The King before this time had planned a settlement of Swiss protestants in Ireland. Among the expenses of the "resident to their Majesties in the Hanse Towns of Lower Saxony" we find this entry:—"£5 to a Swiss lord going into Flanders and England, to treat about carrying over a colony of Swiss into Ireland" (p. 401). The plan had proved a complete failure; at least so we may suppose from the petition in May 1695, of a certain Alexander Heurard, gentleman, showing that "about two years ago, he was ordered by his Majesty's minister in Switzerland to take an account of those six hundred families which his Majesty designed to settle in Ireland, and came over with some of them in hopes of a settlement and some allowance for his charges, but has received neither; he prays for some allowance out of the pensions vacant in Ireland by the death of several French officers, or that his Majesty will give him some relief to enable him to return to Switzerland, having a wife and six children, and having spent all he had in his voyage hither and to Ireland" (p. 454). There are, throughout the Calendar, allusions to French and Swiss refugees, who, during the war of the Protestant alliance, sought a haven in the British Isles in which to "enjoy the liberty of the Protestant religion."
In November the Lords Justices informed Sir John Trenchard that the merchants and landowners awaited with great impatience a relaxation of the prohibition upon the export of corn. "It would be a great satisfaction to all people of this kingdom, by letting loose their trade, and opening a way to bring some money hither, which is grown exceeding scarce, and would increase the revenue by the customs" (p. 346). In reply, Shrewsbury directed the Lords Justices "to consider from what ports of that kingdom corn may be best exported, so as the French may not be supplied therewith, either by the ships going to France or otherwise; as also for what ports it may be necessary to have a convoy, and when the corn-ships will be ready to sail" (p. 360).
In January, 1694, will be found proposals (to which reference occurs in the Calendars for 1692 and 1693) for establishing a penny post in Ireland. These were submitted to the Postmasters-General of England (p. 9). They replied, in April 1695, that a penny post might be of general advantage to the correspondence and trade of Ireland, but that if the King granted letters patent to the applicants, Christopher Perkins and William Waller, the patentees would have to be under certain restrictions (p. 416). They went on to express their opinion that the proposal would "in no ways answer the charge the petitioners must necessarily be at in the undertaking." A later entry shows that the petitioners found the restrictions too hard, and the matter was referred to the Lords of the Treasury (p. 426).
The depleted condition of the English Exchequer, which has been illustrated in previous volumes of the Calendar, shows little or no improvement in 1694. A letter written by Shrewsbury to the Lords Commissioners of the Treasury complained that:—"Scarce any foreign post arrives without bringing complaints from one or other of the ministers abroad of the difficulty they have to subsist, and that they are so far in arrear at the Exchequer as hardly to have credit left to support themselves" (p. 80).
William's foreign wars were a heavy drain upon the resources of the country, and various letters written by Godolphin, with characteristic bluntness, to the King, set forth in detail the state of the Treasury (pp. 209, 242, 309). We gather from his letter, dated July the 10th, that expenses far exceeded the funds in hand:—"There is still another burden which we shall have great difficulty to struggle with, and that is to give funds for this year's clothing" (i.e., clothing for the army), "for which those who have furnished the clothes are extremely clamorous. You judge very rightly that we shall not be able to pay any part of the money remaining due for forage till the month of August, and even then we must endeavour to content them with the remotest assignments we have upon the funds of this year. . . . . It is hard to make bricks without straw" (p. 217).
On the 31st of July Godolphin wrote:—"In my last of the 28th, I humbly informed your Majesty that we had remitted £10,000 by that post, and hoped by this to send a greater sum; accordingly we have this evening, at the Treasury, agreed for £20,000 more with some of the Jews, but the bills will not go over till the next post, because their Sabbath was come before the agreement could be perfected" (p. 245). On the 11th of January, 1695, a warrant was issued "for the repayment of the war loan amonnting to £622,096 13s., preceded by a list of the contributors" (p. 389). The original document contains many notable names. A long anonymous letter to the King (pp. 362–366) reviewed the finances and the expenditure of that time. The Poll Tax was evidently unpopular, and in a letter to Trenchard is the statement that "the Poll Bill will do more hurt than the money's worth to the Government" (p. 142).
The following entry will give some idea of the large sums of money that were paid into the hands of the allies:— "Calculations relating to the supply voted for the land forces for the year 1694, including subsidies, viz., to the Duke of Savoy, £72,000; to the Duke of Hanover, £58,000; to the Duke of Saxony, £25,000; to the Landgrave of Hesse Cassel, £35,000; to the Elector of Brandenburg, £28,571 8s. 6d.; to the Bishop of Liege, £12,000" (p. 366).
A serious problem confronting the Government was the state of the coinage. It will be remembered that, owing to the common practice of clipping, the old money, which had not milled edges, had become so debased that it had grown to be less than half its intrinsic worth. In May, 1694, the Mayor of Newcastle-under-Lyme wrote to Sir John Trenchard, stating that "several persons here refuse to take in payment their Majesties' tin halfpence and farthings, upon pretence they will shortly be suppressed, which occasions great distractions" (p. 125). The laws against those who clipped or counterfeited the coinage were made more severe; the charge was one of high treason, and the sentence was death, although the offender was often included in the pardons granted, from time to time, to the prisoners in Newgate, with or without the condition of transportation (pp. 279 etc.). It was decreed that after Midsummer's Day, 1694, no clipped money should pass in loans (p. 189). A later Parliament solved the difficulty by recoining all the current cash of the kingdom.
In Ireland the question of the coinage was equally complicated. In the middle of February, 1695, members of the Council Board were negociating the subject of money and the issue of guineas (p. 393). Lord Capell wrote to Shrewsbury on the 21st of March:—"I have nothing to trouble you with since his Majesty permitted the coin to go out, and the guineas to be raised according to former precedent, and though the other two Justices be against meddling with that matter, I will get a Council called, and doubt not but it will succeed better then" (p. 408). Before long, however, the country was even in greater difficulties, and the Privy Council sent an appeal to Shrewsbury, stating that the current coin, both gold and silver, had been carried away in such great quantities, on account of the rise in value in other parts, that the kingdom was likely to be drained, and commerce could not be carried on. The remedy suggested was to raise the value of the coin in Ireland, for which they prayed permission, proposing to put such value on the several species "as would make them bear an equal and proportionable advance to the guinea when at 25s." (pp. 438, 439).
Lord Capell's letter of the 25th of April emphasized the difficulties involved by this exportation of coin, and stated that the little which remained in the country was kept from circulating, in expectation that the value would be further raised (p. 441). Much distress and confusion naturally ensued, and foreign trade was almost at a standstill. A paper on this subject by Sir Leonard Robinson (pp. 441–442) describes the situation in detail, and states that even before the money of Ireland was "transmitted," the charge of the establishment exceeded the revenue by about £80,000 per annum.
On the 4th of May, 1695, the Lords Justices received a warrant for raising the value of coin in Ireland, or doing what they thought fit to prevent the coin being "drained and carried away" (p. 455). Accordingly, a proclamation was issued on the 29th of May, assigning increased values to foreign coins, which were to be accepted in England at the following rates, as if they were sterling money of England. The Spanish or French pistol was to pass at 21s.; the Spanish or French gold half pistol at 10s. 6d.; the "duccatoon" at 6s. 8d.; the "half duccatoon" at 3s. 4d.; the "quarter duccatoon" at 1s. 8d.; the "eight of Mexico or Seville, the Mexico pillar piece, the cross dollar, all other dollars, and the French Louis at 5s. 4d.; the piece of eight called the Old Peru, at 4s. 10d.; the crusado of Portugal, at 3s. 6d." An allowance of 2d. was to be given for each grain wanting in any piece of the kinds of gold above-mentioned (p. 481).
Among the instructions sent to the Lord Deputy of Ireland in May 1695, we find this entry:—"You shall prevent a general abuse by the unlawful making, coining and vending of small money for change, much to the loss and wrong of the subjects, and of ill consequence to the Government if not remedied" (p. 458). There is a reference in the previous October to "several quantities of brass money coined by the late Earl of Tyrconnel, and left in the stores of Limerick, Galway and Dublin, amounting in value to about £300" (p. 322).
Scotland evidently experienced much the same difficulties in regard to the coinage as England and Ireland, for on April the 6th, 1695, a warrant was issued to the Scotch Privy Council, in response to an appeal made by that body to raise the value of the current coin in Scotland, ordering that the clipped money should be passed only by weight (p. 419).
The year 1694 was eventful in the financial history of this country, as it witnessed the formation of the Bank of England. In May Lord Godolphin wrote to the King:— "We are endeavouring all we can to get through the difficulties that we meet in the settling of that matter [i.e. the Bank], pursuant to the Act of Parliament, and I hope we shall at last overcome them all, though the thing being new in itself and against the interests of many particular persons, meets with great opposition" (p. 145). A few days later we read: "The Council has made good progress in the commission and draft of the letters patent for establishing the Corporation for a Bank" (p. 152).
On the 8th of June Godolphin again wrote to the King:— "After abundance of difficulty and obstructions, the Queen at last has signed this morning, in the Council Chamber, the warrant for the commission for taking subscriptions to the Bank, which is not, however, like to bring in any money till the 1st of August, and then how fast it will bring in the whole sum, I am not able to guess; but I am pretty sure it will not come so fast as the bare subsistence for the troops will want it, if there were no other occasion of the army that required it " (p. 168).
Again, on the 22nd of June, he informed the King that "Yesterday being appointed for the opening of the books and taking the subscriptions to the Bank, the Commissioners of the Treasury waited upon the Queen for leave to go into the city and subscribe ten thousand pounds for your Majesty, being told the example of it would be a great encouragement to others; this was accordingly done, and it had such good success that the subscription yesterday amounted to near £350,000. I have not heard what has been subscribed to-day, but so good a beginning seems to leave little doubt but the Bank will now take place, notwithstanding the difficulty and obstructions it has met with almost in all places, and from all persons" (p. 197).
We gather from later passages in the same letter that there was some doubt still in Godolphin's mind as to the consequences of the undertaking, whether it would be a prejudice to the public; but it had come in a time of great need to the Government, and without the £1,200,000 promised by the Bank there would have been no possibility of paying the subsistence beyond the next month of July. "At present," he continued, "there is almost a total stop at credit, one set of people keeping up their money to subscribe to the Bank, and all the goldsmiths giving any rates to get the money into their hands to disappoint the subscriptions. But I hope the struggle will be over now in a little time, as soon as the Bank is full, and the credit resumes its course again" (ibid).
It will be remembered that the success of this subscription list surpassed the most sanguine expectations; the whole amount was subscribed before the first instalment was due, and the Bank of England was formally chartered.
The East India Company played no unimportant part in the history of the period covered by the present volume. The value of its trade to the well-being of English commerce was appreciated by the Admiralty, and appeals for convoys to guard the vessels belonging to the Company, which were returning to England, richly laden with the products of the East, were readily granted.
At the end of the previous year, 1693, a new charter had, after much deliberation, been granted to the East India Company. In a private letter to the King from Sir John Somers, Keeper of the Great Seal, written on the 31st of July, 1694, occurs this passage:—"I think myself obliged to mention you a thing which relates to the East India Company, and because it does relate to that company I have not taken notice of it to anybody else, nor shall do, till I know your pleasure. By their new charter they are obliged to accept of such regulations and qualifications as you shall be pleased to impose upon them before Michaelmas next. If nothing be done till after that time, they are out of your power, and stand again upon their old charter. How far that will be for your service, you are the best judge, and I will not so much as pretend to give any thoughts about it, but only presume to put you in mind how near the time approaches, that so, if you like, the thing may pass over silently (for I believe those who think most of it will not mention it) or else, that you may not lose the opportunity of giving orders to it, at least for keeping your power on foot for some time longer, which may be done by giving them farther regulations" (p. 246).
The King evidently deemed this too good an opportunity to be lost, and accordingly sent his orders to England. Shrewsbury, in his reply, dated the 24th of August, remarked: "Mr. Blathwayt is informed of what I have done in relation to your Majesty's commands to the East India Company, and I have sent him a copy of their answer; as I take it to be my duty to acquaint you with everything that is or may be for your service, so I think it would be a breach of that duty if I should conceal what is whispered here by some who have heard this proposition, and indistinctly give out that it arises from the suggestion of persons in Holland, who hope by these means to ruin this company, and would, before any other is set up, destroy the English trade" (pp.273-274).
The outcome of the matter will be found in a warrant, dated on September the 27th, for the preparation of "additional regulations" to the East India Company's charter. These are given in detail and conclude:—"Should any charters heretofore granted to the company prove prejudicial to the crown or the realm, they shall cease and be void, and the Company of Merchants of London trading into the East Indies from and after the end of three years, after due warning given, shall not continue to be, but shall be wholly determined" (p. 317).
Early in the following year, 1695, came the searching enquiry into the bribery and corruption then prevailing in England, in the course of which a committee was appointed to inspect the books of the East India Company; it was found that large sums had been unwarrantably distributed, even among Members of Parliament. Then followed the trial of the Duke of Leeds, president of the Company, before the House of Commons, and the evidence of his Swiss servant, Robart, was required. Under the date of May the 4th is a circular letter from Shrewsbury to the chief officers of the different seaports, "desiring them, in consequence of an address to the King by the House of Lords, to make search for Monsieur John Robart among all sorts of people whatsoever who shall resort to their ports with the intention of passing beyond the seas, and having found him "to send him up hither in safe custody" (p. 460). Five days later came a proclamation "for the apprehension of Monsieur John Robart, in connection with the receiving and disposing of great sums of money for procuring charters for the East India Company" (p. 465). Robart, however, had, ere this, succeeded in making good his escape. The case was stopped by the sudden prorogation of Parliament, and in the next session it was not revived.
Another body in which corruption was, at this time, found to exist was that which dealt with the licensing of hackney coachmen. As to the parliamentary enquiry which revealed the existence of this corruption the calendar is silent, but the grievances of the hackney men themselves find a mention on page 370. Here we have the "humble complaint" of several hackney coachmen in and about London and Westminster, setting forth that in the last poll bill for carrying on a vigorous war against France, it was enacted that every one of the hackney coachmen should pay £5 yearly towards the same, which "with all imaginable cheerfulness" they were ready and willing to pay, supposing themselves thereby freed from "the oppression and slavery" of the city of London; notwithstanding which the late Lord Mayor, Sir Thomas Stamp, and the court of aldermen, compelled them to take licenses from them, and for non-payment of the sums demanded, caused them to be arrested in the Chamberlain's name (p. 370).
As in previous volumes of the Calendars, the papers now dealt with contain abundant evidence that in England as well as in Scotland and Ireland there existed a dissatisfaction with the King and the Orange Party, which was widespread both in regard to locality and social status.
William himself cannot have been ignorant of the fact. Sir John Summers wrote to him on the 15th of June, 1694, of his suspicion of corruption in high places. He enclosed a list of names for appointment to the Excise Commission; of two he remarked that they were "such avowed Jacobites that there was nothing to be said for them," and of a third "he does show great partiality in preferring officers who are disaffected to the Government, and is not free from corruption, and his experience is a disservice to you, for rather than vary from the old course, he will defend all the frauds and abuses which are occasioned thereby" (pp. 179–180).
On the 16th of March, 1694, a warrant was issued to search for Colonel Parker at his house at Parker's Hall, near Reigate, to apprehend him on the charge of high treason, and secure his papers (p. 61). He was committed to the Tower on the 22nd of May (p. 146), but made his escape in August; whereupon a reward of £400 was offered for his apprehension (p. 265), and the following notice published:—"Description of Colonel John Parker: aged about forty years; a fair man, somewhat long visaged, with a sharp chin and a high thin nose, and is a little marked with smallpox; his hair brown, but he generally wears a fair periwig; his size is rather less than a middle stature, with soft speech and smiling countenance when he speaks. He goes a little lamish with some wound he has received, as he pretends" (p. 262). It was rumoured that Parker was concealed near Harborough, in Leicestershire, and suspected houses were searched (p. 270), but without result.
On the 3rd of July a warrant ordered the apprehension of Paul Pepper for high treason "in compassing and imagining the death of the King and Queen" (p. 211). He was committed to Newgate on the 28th of August (p. 282).
These are only two among many references in the Calendar to the arrest of those suspected of plotting against William. From time to time orders were given to search suspected houses, to seize seditious and treasonable books, papers and printing presses, and the persons in whose custody they were found (p. 498). Ships were searched, and French immigrants examined, lest they should be Jacobites in the guise of Protestant refugees.
It was accounted high treason to go abroad "without license" (p. 76), and the entries of passes, granted to various persons to leave the country, are as numerous in the present as in previous volumes of the Calendar; the majority of these were, as we should expect, to Holland or Flanders.
The great treason case of this period, however, was the trial of the Lancashire and Cheshire gentlemen, and the papers now calendared afford some interesting evidence in this complicated matter. To review in briefest outline the incidents of the case, it will be remembered that Lunt's deposition was made before Sir John Trenchard in June, 1694, that the trials began at Manchester in the following October, and that the Lancashire and Cheshire gentlemen, who had been acquitted, brought the matter before the House of Commons in the following November. The matter occupied attention through the session of 1695, but the present volume ends before the charge of perjury was brought against Lunt; this was at the Lancaster assizes in the following August.
Turning now to references to the plot occurring in the Calendar, we find Shrewsbury writing to the King, on the 10th July, 1694, as follows:—"Three Lancashire and Cheshire men, who have been engaged in enlisting soldiers, and buying arms for the disaffected gentlemen in those parts, have made an ample discovery of the whole matter to the Lord Keeper, Mr. Secretary and myself, whereupon Mr. Secretary and I have sent out warrants for seizing the persons and arms of about twenty considerable gentlemen thereabouts, and if these witnesses make good at their trial what they have deposed before us, they will be every man, both lives and fortunes, in your power" (p. 219).
On the 20th of July, Trenchard received a letter from Thomas Lee, written at Croxton, near Brereton Green, in the course of which he stated:—"My abode is in the crowd of enemies to the Government; it is certain they are in great consternation, and riding about continually, as I now am informed they have done in the night for some time past." Men were timorous in their evidence concerning their neighbours, he continued; but soon visible evidence was found. "They brought an old trunk of papers from Sir Rowland Stanley's; there were nine saddles, all new, found at Mr. Massey's, hid under feathers and straw. Sir Rowland sent to us next morning for a copy of his commitment. There is nobody with whom the non-swearers herd more than Mr. Shakerley, M.P. One Mr. Weston, of Chrislington, near Chester, I believe is as obnoxious as any man. I moved to have him surprized by a search, but was not harkened to. There is one Mr. Samuel Warburton, that lives at Butler's Wharf, who was born upon Mr. Cholmondeley's land. He is an eminent dissenter of Mr. Vincent's church; but when he was last in this country he gloried much in being a chief instrument in conveying the late King away. He has a brother in this neighbourhood, a plain man, who was at London this week, by whom I am assured he corresponds very much with the Jacobites, and particularly Mr. Cholmondeley, of Vale-Royal. Molyneaux and Standish have escaped. Saddles for a troop of horse were found at Standish's" (p. 232–233).
A letter from Thomas Norris, dated at Speke, the 6th of August, 1694, stated that Captain Baker was fulfilling his charge with care, but not with great success. "I gave him the best advice I could, as knowing this country better than any stranger; but the Popish gentlemen have such private retreats, and so many friends, that it was no surprize to me he failed of taking some that he was most desirous to apprehend." The writer then hinted at "several irregular and undutiful proceedings" on the part of some justices of the peace, and concluded that if the men apprehended were not brought to their trials, it would be to the prejudice of authority. If, on the other hand, a number were fairly convicted, it will be, he says, "in our power to choose (even in this county) much better members of Parliament in case of a dissolution" (p. 255).
A sidelight is thrown on the matter by the petition of the widow of Robert Dodsworth, who had made a discovery to the House of Commons of certain treasonable designs carried on in Lancashire, by means of which the designs were frustrated, but the informant had been murdered in revenge by one known to be ill-affected to the King's person and Government (p. 321).
Reference is made, in a letter from Trenchard to Lord Lucas, dated the 7th of October, 1694, to various prisoners in the Tower, awaiting trial for high treason, who wished to have Sir Bartholomew Shower and Mr. Upton as counsel, and Mr. Pigott as solicitor, to which the Queen had given assent (p. 324).
On the 6th of June the Lords Justices gave audience to Mr. Aaron Smith, the informer, who stated, according to the minute, which is not very clearly worded, that the Lancashire "evidences" would "admit of all that could be proved by reason of Sir John Trenchard's death," and submitted to anything that might bring on their trial that term (p. 488).
After this we hear no more of the matter, except that directions were given to Baron Turton "to have a watchful eye," throughout his circuit in Lancashire, "upon anything that might tend to a disturbance, without alarming the country by giving it in his charge," and to stir up the magistrates to the discharge of their duties (p. 510).
Several allusions to highwaymen illustrate the danger with which travelling was at this time attended. In April 1694, James Fell, the famous, or rather infamous, keeper of Newgate, was authorized to use all lawful ways and means to apprehend these robbers on the highway and burglars and other felons, and to ride about the highways from time to time with arms to capture them, and also to search in any suspected houses (pp. 87–88). Although the sentence of death was generally pronounced upon convicted highwaymen, a reprieve was not infrequently granted, on condition of transportation.
The ecclesiastical history of the period covered by the present volume was not particularly eventful. Tillotson died in November, 1694; Dr. Thomas Tennison, bishop of Lincoln, was advanced to the archbishopric of Canterbury (pp. 350, 355, 381); and Gardiner was presented to the see of Lincoln (p. 401).
There are some entries in January 1695, on the subject of an intended commission for the better disposal of ecclesiastical preferments belonging to the crown in England (p. 379).
On the 15th of February the King issued ecclesiastical injunctions to the Archbishops of Canterbury and York on the subjects of ordination, pluralities, and other abuses, and also enjoining that "no commutation of penance shall be made, except by order of the bishop declared in open court; the commutation money to be applied to pious uses, according to the Articuli pro Clero of 1584, and the Constitutions of 1597" (p. 391).
Towards the end of December, 1694, the King (following the precedent of the previous year) addressed the Bishop of London, directing that publication should be made in all the city churches that all the churchwardens and overseers of the poor should collect the benevolence of charitable people at their respective dwellings, "towards the support and relief of the poorer sort of his Majesty's subjects in or about the city." The sum thus collected was to be paid into the Chamber of London, together with the King's gift out of the Treasury, and was to be distributed at the discretion of the Lord Mayor and the Bishop (pp. 357–358).
The numerous petitions for grants of patents are of some interest, for they throw an often important light on the history of inventions. Early in 1694 will be found proceedings upon the petition of one Henry Richards, "setting forth that in 1679 he went to Normandy solely to learn the art (there used) of making the kind of glass called Normandy or crown glass, and such glass as hath heretofore been transported thence for sash windows, he being the first person that brought that invention to England, and praying a grant for its exercise" (p. 3). A warrant for a patent was allowed him (p. 4).
Another petitioner, Daniel Quare, received letters patent, permitting him to have the sole use and benefit, for fourteen years, of his invention, a portable barometer which might be removed to any place, though turned upside down, without spilling one drop of the quicksilver or letting any air into the tube, although the air should have the same liberty to operate on it as on those common ones then in use with respect to the weight of the atmosphere (p. 395).
We have, too, in these references to inventions and discoveries, notice of "a new sort of engine or machine for casting up great quantities of water in a short time, and useful for draining places overflowed by water. . . . . and for conveying spring or Thames water in pipes to conduits etc. for the benefit of our subjects in or about London" (pp. 15 and 333). Another invention is described as "a new engine or night watch, which, being set in a convenient place in any house, will give timely warning to the inhabitants in case any housebreaker should break in" (p. 17); whilst yet another claims to be an instrument which, "being applied to clocks, organs, or any other key instrument, such as harpsichords, virginals, etc., will cause the same to chime or play any manner of tune, air or notes, or perform a concert, and is alterable to any tune or air in half an hour by anyone not musical, without changing the instrument" (p. 325).
Among the notable names which occur in this volume is that of Sir Christopher Wren, to whom, on the 15th of August, a warrant was addressed directing him, as SurveyorGeneral of Works, "to view several rooms and chambers in the Tower of London, wherein prisoners have been usually kept, and to give directions for repairing the same with such bolts, bars, and locks as the chief governor of the Tower or his deputy shall judge necessary; and to cause Beauchamp's Tower and the Bloody Tower to be wainscotted and strengthened, where there shall be occasion" (p. 267). In September, 1694, the homeward-bound men-of-war were ordered to call at Leghorn and Genoa, to take on board as many marble blocks and stones as they could stow away, "the same being for their Majesties' use, or for the building of St. Paul's Cathedral" (p. 314).
Reference is made, under date May 21st, 1694, to the petition of Rose Forster, widow, sister to "Mrs. Ellen Gwin," mother to the Duke of St. Albans, showing that her first husband, Captain John Cassells, having for many years served the crown, to the great expense of his fortune, died in 1675, leaving her in a sad condition, whereupon Charles II. granted her a pension of £200, which had been unpaid since their Majesties' accession (p. 144).
An undated document (pp. 368–369) records a case indicating the spirit of jealousy existing between the Dutch and English trades. It appears that a certain clay had for some time been dug from an estate in Suffolk, "proper only for the making of white and painted earthenware, of which the potters of England have always been furnished." Since the prohibition of trade with France, the Dutch had been exporting this clay from England as fuller's earth, and a petition was presented that foreigners might be forbidden to take the clay or to bring the pottery into the country. It was urged that the Dutch, who were chiefly concerned in bringing this merchandize, sold at a loss in order to beat down the manufacture; also that the industry in England maintained many poor people, including children from 8 years old and upwards, "that otherwise must be a charge to their parents or their parishes, and are hereby employed till they are big enough to be apprentices to trades." Old men and maimed soldiers also found employment in this industry. "The Dutch had the knowledge of perfecting this art from the English, their now chief workmen being English."
The name of the Earl of Marlborough does not occur in any of the papers here calendared, nor does that of the Princess Anne. The single reference to her husband, Prince George of Denmark, records his appointment, as a member of the Privy Council, to the Commission of Appeal for Prizes during the war (p. 204).
There is a certain significance in the following extract from Godolphin's letter to the King, dated August 31st, 1694:— "There is a King's waiter's place now vacant in the Customs. . . . . . . The Queen has been pleased to tell me . . . . that his place must be given to the Duke of Gloucester's nurse's husband, and says she is sure you would have it so, if you were here" (p. 287). This nurse was probably Mrs. Pack, who, it has been alleged, took advantage of her position to spy upon the household of the Princess Anne, and carry tales which the Queen was not unwilling to hear.
In references to art and artists of the time this Calendar is not rich, but there are two to Sir Godfrey Kneller which are of special interest. In the first, dated in 1694, the painter writes to the Attorney General: "I remember you promised to pay me 50l. for the two pictures of the King and Queen, and 10l. for the frames. . . . . I never did any pictures of that kind so cheap before. My price is 40l. to 50l. apiece and no less" (p. 370). The second reference is a warrant to pay 120l. to Kneller from the revenues of Scotland "for two pictures" of which the Scotch Chancellor would give an account; this sum was to include the cost of sending the pictures "home" (p. 447).
The royal palace of Greenwich, which Queen Mary had designed for a naval hospital, is mentioned among the minutes of the proceedings of the Lords Justices, who "resolved that the reasons for renewing the commission for Greenwich Hospital should be recommended to the King, as soon as the warrant was brought them" (p. 493).
As in previous volumes of the Calendar many of the entries are interesting from a topographical point of view. Lord Villiers was summoned to the presence of the Lords Justices and acquainted with the disorders to be apprehended from "vizard masks coming in hackney coaches to Hyde Park." For preventing this a prohibition was to be fixed on the park gates, signed by his lordship and in their Excellencies' name, to "take off what might look unpopular in such a restraint, and to qualify the disgust" (p. 479). Another entry of importance to London topography is that which records the foundation of a Danish church in Well Close (p. 91).
There was some friction in 1694 between the English and Danish commanders on the subject of saluting, a matter which, as we have seen in the Calendars for previous years, had often arisen before; but the threatened breach of peace was, on this occasion, apparently averted. Sir Cloudesley Shovel, coming into the Downs on the 10th of August, 1694, found a Danish man-of-war riding with pendant and colours flying, and not striking them as he passed. Shovel sent to know the reason, "and to let him know it was expected from him." The Dane made answer "that he would not strike for the English, nor for any nation in the world"; on further "parley," however, he expressed his willingness to "consider the matter within twenty-four hours," if the English flag-officer would certify that he had a written order from his King and Queen to make him strike his pendant! (p. 270).
A counter difficulty arose as to the saluting by English ships of the Castle of Cronenburg, belonging to the King of Denmark. It was decided that the English should salute with three guns, upon the assurance that their salute would be returned (p. 321).
References to the colonies are few and far between, but under the date August 11th, 1694, is recorded "Mr. Penn's grant of the government of Pennsylvania," the appointment of Benjamin Fletcher to be captain-general and governor-in-chief of Pennsylvania, Newcastle, New Jersey and other territories dependent (p. 261).
W. J. HARDY.