Debates in 1667: 1st-15th November

Grey's Debates of the House of Commons: Volume 1. Originally published by T. Becket and P. A. De Hondt, London, 1769.

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'Debates in 1667: 1st-15th November', Grey's Debates of the House of Commons: Volume 1, (London, 1769), pp. 14-41. British History Online [accessed 25 June 2024].

. "Debates in 1667: 1st-15th November", in Grey's Debates of the House of Commons: Volume 1, (London, 1769) 14-41. British History Online, accessed June 25, 2024,

. "Debates in 1667: 1st-15th November", Grey's Debates of the House of Commons: Volume 1, (London, 1769). 14-41. British History Online. Web. 25 June 2024,

In this section

Wednesday, November 6.

[Sir Thomas Littleton reported from the Committee, appointed to draw up the Heads of the Accusations against the Earl of Clarendon, several particulars brought in by several Members, amounting in the whole to seventeen.]

Mr Edward Seymour.] After having charged the Lord Chancellor, in general, thus expressed himself: He makes the earth groan by his building (fn. 1) (the monument of his greatness) as we have done under his oppression—and speaking of the King's being a Papist, said, As if the ills he had done must be supported by greater (fn. 2).

Sir Thomas Littleton.] (On presenting the Articles.) If he did not the crimes alleged, he is able to clear it upon others—He whined after a peace—At the beginning of the war we had no preparations—The wind was wonderfully in a corner, that the Dutch could not come out— He gave perpetual assurance that the French would not come out—He made plots, and a Committee of Lords and Commons appointed to enquire; but all came to no effect; nothing discovered. He made those plots as a ground to raise an army.

The Commons do of course send to the Lords—Lord Mordaunt's business from an accusation of a particular person; this from the Commons of England—The course is, that the Lords do desire him to be secured.

Mr Henry Coventry (fn. 3).] The things urged against Lord Clarendon, if proved, make him past excuse.

Lord Cornbury (fn. 4).] If any one article in this charge be proved, Lord Clarendon will submit to the rest.

[Another particular touching the dividing the fleet, being delivered in, was added to the rest; and the heads again read at the table (fn. 5); on which a debate arose, whether the heads of the accusations brought in against the Earl of Clarendon should be referred to a Committee to take the proofs.]

Mr Dowdswell.] Moves to have the heads committed to enquire the truth—Argues that common fame is not sufficient to bring him upon the stage.

Sir Francis Goodrick.] The Committee has brought in new matter from what was brought into the House, and moves to have it re-committed.

Sir Robert Howard.] Suppose the Earl of Clarendon be committed, 'tis no more than what a great man, the Duke of Buckingham, lately has been (fn. 6) —The only injury, though clear, is imprisonment—Suppose proof comes to the Committee, you have no witnesses upon oath, and so the Committee can make no more report than they have done.—His inconvenience, to be imprisoned only for a few days; Ours, to let a person go free with such a charge—No crime left out in the charge, bating insulting the King.—If the charge be not true, every member that delivered the charge exposed to ruin.

His inconvenience of imprisonment fully recompensed by his innocence.

Sir John Goodrick.] Would have the gentleman make it his own case.—Moves that the impeachment may not go out of the House, till recommended to a grand Committee.

Sir Thomas Littleton.] A sum of money was named, but the charge from the Committee "great sums of money."

Sir William Lewis.] Says, he finds nothing reported from the Committee of the highest part of the charge, "the King's unfitness for government."

Sir Robert Brooke.] That part of the charge, of "the Chancellor's being in effect Treasurer," omitted in the accusation from the Committee.

Col. Birch (fn. 7).] Said, that Sir William Pennyman, an evidence against Lord Strafford, was checked for not offering to give his evidence.

Mr Prynne.] Edw. III. §. 50. the Parliament's impeachment against Lord Latimer.—Examination of proofs before impeachment.

Edw. III. §. 7. William de la Pole accused by the fishmongers.—It was false, and the fishmongers fined.

Lord Bacon accused for Bribery, moved for the proofs first, and then the impeachment.

Sir Edward Thurland.] Moves for a Committee to examine the matter.

Sir Robert Howard.] It may seem rational for a Committee to examine, but never known in proceedings in law—If witnesses were known, they would be visited; they could say words, but not oaths; and might fly from what they said, and so no evidence.

Mr Coleman.] Moved to have the accuser and charge produced before commitment.

Mr Trevor.] Secundum probabilem accusandum, sed secundum probatum condemnandum—The impeachment will never come to any thing, if proceeded in the same form as in inferior courts.

Mr Vaughan.] The weightiest charge he ever had seen or read of.—The King is concerned to have his subjects hearts alienated from him—That this House, the ultimate refuge for complaints against great offenders, may be so.

Lord Clarendon not to be tryed as a Commoner who may challenge juries, but as a Peer who cannot challenge.

Lord Strafford's tryal not to be precedented.

Crimes less than capital for the Star-chamber, or the King's bench, in case of a Peer.

In Parliament, the Lords, in matter of their privilege and jurisdiction ancient—About Hen. VI.'s time—Before that time witnesses never swore before the Lords— Refer, to a Committee of Grievances, proceedings, where a thing is but handed to the Parliament by way of suggestion.

The jury sworn to keep their own and their fellows counsel—If known, interest, invention, or relationship might hinder justice.

If this be not by way of impeachment, the King may set his Attorney-General upon him.

This is usually done: The impeachment is carried up to the Lords, and a day set for articles,—the party summoned,—'till issue joined, no divulging witnesses, for the charge is sometimes confessed.

Hen. VI. §. 28. Michael de la Pole was charged, that ballads were made that he was not faithful to the King— Upon his confession of such a fame, the Commons desired he might be committed; but the Lords thought it not fit, till the Commons had exhibited a charge, which was not sufficient upon common fame; but nothing to be found how the Commons proceeded—Refers to later precedents.

Accusing is in the nature of a plaintiff:—That the evidence of the plaintiff should be heard, and not the defendant's, is against reason—Some witnesses not to be had; (in the Lords House)—We have not power to bring a witness directly before us. A man is safe that delivers himself upon oath; but if not upon oath, subject to Scandalum magnatum.—Voluntary evidence and compelled are two different things.

One said, What court of justice durst call a man in question? Answered, Those that resolved ship money, and Sir John Elliot's case, and the rest.

We would have all things done to us as a grand jury. Witnesses ought to be private.—The evidence comes not out of fairy land, where there is no access.—Where witnesses come not in voluntarily, we must proceed without evidence.

Sir John Goodrick.] Would have things construed in mitiorem partem, and moves in the mean time to enquire into precedents.

Sir John Holland.] No man impeached in the House of Commons, but blasted for ever after; therefore we should be wary how we proceed—If any person will undertake to make it good, as Sir Henry Vane did Lord Strafford's impeachment, he is for an impeachment.

Mr Seymour.] Speaking of precedents, said, That precedents in the church by the fathers are rather to facilitate assent, than impose belief—fitter for lower courts than a Parliament.—As soon as their own matter is accorded, treason is done away, as in the late precedents. One argument of Lord Clarendon's guilt is, that he has not put himself upon his tryal all this while—We are now disputing whether we shall ever impeach any person.—Of his own knowledge, many persons have been menaced in case they give evidence. Serpens qui serpentem devorat sit draco. Lord Clarendon has reserved to himself the monopoly of bribes. He says, he has a moral assurance of the proof of all his charge.

Sir Edward Walpole.] Course of reason is constant, and upon the same reason, of the same opinion. Cites Earl of Bristol's case in Mr Rushworth.

Sir Thomas Gower.] 15 Edw. III. Lord Latimer, accused of crimes within and without the kingdom, saved to himself the right of a Peer, and he would answer any particular person.—Lord Neville demurred; the impeachment was put in; and two Knights were present when the evidence was examined before the Lords.—De la Pole, Duke of Suffolk, impeached for high treason; the Lords came to the Commons to confer—The Speaker put in the impeachment—no witnesses examined, for the fact was notorious.

Mr Coleman.] Argues against Lord Strafford's case, and against an impeachment, by hearsay of some gentleman without doors only.

Sir Robert Howard.] If we proceed only by the common law, we may be censured at some of the bars below; we must do it to satisfy, and then not satisfy by doing it.—Though common law has its proper sphere, 'tis not in this place—we are in a higher sphere. If impeachments of this nature be not allowed, we have no way left of impeaching a great person. Michael de la Pole so charged, and Lord Chancellor, who then governed all, and probably in the fault then.

Sir Henry North.] Says, the amends he can make for any impertinency is not to hold them long. Understands the charge upon common fame only. Being without evidence, moves to have the articles argued head by head, what they amount unto.

Sir Robert Atkins.] We have things at the third hand; persons without doors say they know it by information— Urges the shame of accusing an innocent person; and credulous persons will retain some of the accusations, though false.

Sir William Lowther (fn. 8).] In Parliament 1 Caroli, out of Rushworth, common same a good ground of proceeding in any accusation from the House of Commons —Resolved then upon the question in Dr Turner's case against the Duke of Buckingham.

Sir Thomas Strickland.] Lord Strafford complained of nothing done before his tryal, but at his tryal, and put it home to the Lords as their own case in accumulative treason.

The hardship he rejects, but the easy one in proceeding he would have—Never knew a child named before born, and so would not have the impeachment.

Mr Waller.] The door was locked in the Debate of Lord Strafford's and the Archbishop of Canterbury's case— The reason, because of the greatness of the men—The King might dissolve the Parliament before the impeachment.

The laying aside of some then saved their lives.

Sir Richard Temple.] In several impeachments no witness but from impeachments without doors—Grand juries present upon their own knowledge, and if the fact known by any, bound to present.

Michael de la Pole was impeached for common fame —When voted impeached, then time to inform a committee for accusations.

Sir John Holland.] In Lord Strafford's case information was to the Committee of Grievances by Sir John Clotworthy—He moves for particular charge before impeached—Torches a-far off make greater show than near at band. From Lord Bacon.

Sir Charles Wheeler (fn. 9).] Charges him with countenancing the Nonconformists—He charges the Clergy with drunkenness in the proclamation, forgetting gluttony, himself so guilty of—He made many a poor gentleman believe at Paris, that he came from his Embassy in Spain, full of money—He sent Prince Rupert into Germany—Engrosses all money and counsels—Corresponds with Cromwell, and had money from him—Oppressed the Duke of York, till his alliance with his daughter.

Sir Edward Walpole.] So to proceed that justice may be done justly—To refer it to a Committee.

[The question being put, that the heads of the accusation brought in against the Earl of Clarendon be referred to a Committee to take the proofs, and report; it passed in the negative 194 to 128. The House then proceeded on the heads of the Accusation.]

Thursday, November 7.

[The House resumed the farther Consideration of the heads of the accusation delivered in against the Earl of Clarendon.]

Sir Thomas Osborne (fn. 10).] The King ready to change his religion!—No money remaining—No person in employment, but who can buy it—We are upon our last legs— No one man ever had more employments— Threatens any man that gave advice—No vessel to swim without his hand at the rudder—No money issued out of the treasury without his approbation—Sir William Coventry brought orders out of the Chancellor's closet, when the King was with him—If any other men had the thoughts, they had not the power—He has no pique against him, but as he is one of the four hundred (fn. 11) (of the House of Commons) thought by the Chancellor useless and inconsiderable.

[Chatham Business intcrposed (fn. 12).]

Sir John Duncombe.] The business of the fortifications was not in the commission of the ordnance, but in a commission by itself; the Commissioners of the Ordnance would not meddle, being a thing they were not versed in.

Col. Birch.] Would have every man's part to act produced in a paper. The main thing in charge, that the platform was without guns.

'T was said by Sir John Duncombe (fn. 13), that what orders were given by his Majesty were only verbal; that they had done their best, and nothing lay upon them but directions, which, they say, were performed.

[Lord Clarendon's impeachment resumed.]

Sir Thomas Littleton.] No precedent, modern or ancient, where witnesses were examined when the complaint arose within doors—If the words charged were spoken at the Privy Council, no way to prove them but an address by the body of the House to the King to give leave to those Lords to attend a Committee of the Commons to give evidence.

Mr. Waller.] Burleigh plodded fifty years for a fortune, and the Chancellor got more in five—Burleigh's not by counselling Queen Elizabeth to raise a standing army. She had four subsidies, and beat her enemies with two, and gave two back again—The lawyers were against Lord Strafford; he was unhappy he was not bred a lawyer—Strange! that the General set us right by an army—And a Chancellor advise to govern by one —He is Sampson among the Philistines; Lord Clarendon carries the gates and walls away upon his back— This man accused so to carry our walls, the shipping— Those walls destroyed to build his.

Mr Henry Coventry (fn. 14).] Abhors the author, as he does the crimes, if proved—The arguments are not convenience, or inconvenience; just, or not just. Impeachment is as fair a condemnation as we can give him—Lord Latimer's estate and blood restored, because illegally attainted—The King spoke at his death about Lord Strafford.

Sir Richard Temple.] A fact done, somebody must be presented, and who but the most probable person— King's party ill rewarded—King's credit lost, and trade —He knows some of the charge to be true—Michael de la Pole's case, only rumours that he would sell the kingdom to the French.

Mr Vaughan.] Some articles, even out of their own nature, may be proved; those persons nominated for witness in the way proposed by some, will not give any evidence.

Friday, November 8.

[The House resumed the Debate of the matter upon the Heads of Accusation against the Earl of Clarendon; and resolved, that this House hath sufficient inducement to impeach the Earl of Clarendon.

The first Head of the Accusation being read, the question on that Head being, Whether the Earl of Clarendon should be impeached of High Treason or not; the Debate was adjourned.]

Saturday, November 9.

[The House resumed the matter of the Debate upon the first Head of Accusation against the Earl of Clarendon.]

Sir Thomas Strickland.] To the first article moved, That the statute of 25 Edw. III. may be read, statute of 1 Philip and Mary, and the Earl of Strafford's case.

Sir Robert Brooke.] Possibly the advice the Lord Chancellor gave the King for a standing army was given in a time of emergency; not to be a durable thing, but to go off when the occasion ceased.

Mr Prynne.] It may be this counsel for a standing army might be in Sir George Booth's business, before the act of indemnity.

Sir Robert Howard.] It is probable about Chatham business, for then the Parliament was to sit—Moves to have the Statutes of 1 Hen. IV. Chap. 10. 1 Edw. VI. Chap. 12. and 14 Car. Chap. 29. read.

Mr Steward.] If ever any offence was treason by the Common Law, this offence comes the nearest. The judges had once a power of declaring treason, as they have now of felony—Sir John Talbot, in Edw. III. convicted upon declarative treason—'Till Lord Strafford's time no declarative treason since the statute of 25 Edw. III.

Mr St John's speech to this purpose.] Hares we hunt, Wolves we destroy.

Mr Waller.] Looks upon the first article as a new form of government, like Sir Thomas More's Utopia, Plato, and Oceana—Government by Bashaws—Our late rebellion had Commons, but in this government not so much as a Rump left—It outgoes the 5th of November. Both Houses blown up, and slavery by this upon posterity—This we may reasonably think, but the measure of tryal must be law.

Col. Birch.] The people at Chatham were distracted —This looks like such a discourse of Lord Chancellor's; the nature shows it.

Sir John Denham.] " Never hereafter to think of Parliaments," looks not like a distracted expression.

Sir Francis Goodrick.] John Imperial's case, the Genoa Ambassador, declared treason by Act of Parliament, but was felony at law before. In cases not capital before, the Parliament declares no treason.

The article, none of the treasons within the words of the statutes.

Mr Vaughan.] Was this treason at any time? Though it may be taken away, yet by the nature of this we shall know the nature and weight of these offences. That statute speaking of petty treasons, if it come in question for the future, it shall be declared by Parliament.

25 Edw. III. the King's eldest daughter violated; either it must be treason, adultery, or fornication—Not felony before; no misprision, because revealed to the King in council—To advise his Prince in his necessities must not be with violating the laws—Glanville's Seductio Domini Regis.

To render the King as a person that hath broken his oath, and advised by a person that knows the laws, and at once advises to subvert them all—The King in no danger of the law, but in danger of a defection of his subjects—He asserts all this not in my Lord Chancellor, but the article.

Mr Sollicitor Finch.] Mortimer was found guilty of treason in Parliament for encroaching upon royal power, quantum in ipso fuit legiare.

Challenged Cromwell to fight in the Court of France, out of the kingdom. This encroaching was so general a word, that he would rather errare cum patribus than bene sentire.

In Talbot's case, the King and Lords declared it treason; but it was not, the Commons not joining. The declaratory power in the Lords is gone, but the declaratory power in the Parliament not. By enacting (speculatively as a lawyer) not, but by Bill without doubt.

The questions put to Tresilian and Belknap, at Nottingham-Castle—They declared not to be treason; but after a change the Parliament did declare them traitors; the King's articles must be precedent.

Sir Richard Temple.] This article is treason in 25 Edward III. In the insurrection of the Villains to abolish the law against villanage, but to obey all other laws— Bradshaw and Barnard in Oxfordshire—To throw down inclosures declared levying war against the King and against the government; for those commissioned by him—Story devised, though he did not actually levy, war, and was executed.—Story's case.

Sir Thomas Clarges (fn. 15).] Hugh Pine's case, that the King was unfit to govern, and would be led away like a child with an apple—As unfit to govern as his shepherd—Lord Strafford said, he has known that words may make a man a heretic, but not a traitor.

Serjeant Maynard.] Seductio Domini Regis, out of Glanville and Braidon, no authority.

Mr Coventry.] 'Tis not what the offence is in morality, but in law—The buggering and stealing of a cow nothing, before declared.

Sir Robert Howard.] Our laws and liberties violated by this Lord Clarendon, and we know not by what name to call the offence.

[The question being put, That the Earl of Clarendon, upon the first head of Accusation, be impeached of treason, it passed in the negative, 172 to 103, and the consideration of the rest of the heads was adjourned to the 11th (fn. 16).]

Monday, November 11.

[The House resumed the Consideration of the rest of the Heads of Accusation against the Earl of Clarendon, and the several Heads being read, to the 16th Head, a Debate ensued.]

Sir Robert Howard.] Moves to have the charge read head by head, voted; and presumes such evidence may be given as to insure the House to pass them—He has evidence that assures him of the article of the standing army.

Lord St John.] Asserts the article of the King's being a Papist.

Mr Vaughan, to the article that the King was a Papist, and popishly affected in his heart.] The article is a charge in itself, and let him make his defence.

Mr Seymour.] Spoke to the article for granting the Canary patent.

Sir Tho. Osborne.] Spoke to the same.

Sir R. Temple.] Avows, of his own knowledge, the selling of offices contrary to law.

Sir Thomas Littleton.] The customs under-rated 50,000 l.—formerly quarterly payments, now every fortnight.

Sir Robert Carr, to the moneys from the Vintners.] Knows the person that told him Lord Clarendon had those sums, and will give an account.

Mr Seymour, to the article of getting so great an estate.] It needs no more proof than the sun's shining at noon day.

Mr Vaughan.] Selling of manors of the King's is contrary to his oath, to do all things for the good of his Majesty and his subjects.

Sir Thomas Littleton.] The matter of fact easily made out. The Chief Justice's place of the Common Pleas always in competition for the profits with the Chancellor's place—His purchases beyond any Keeper's place.

Col. Birch.] Knows he owes money for some lands he holds of him.

Mr Vaughan.] The answer to the articles is not now, but whether it be a charge or not.

Sir Thomas Littleton.] The persons that complained against Lord Willoughby the last session, are ready to justify, that my Lord Chancellor supported Lord Willoughby in what he did.

Sir Thomas Osborne.] My Lord Chancellor caused the person that complained to be secured, and never heard at the council.

Sir Charles Wheeler.] The war, fire, and plague, not so great a loss as Nevis and St. Christopher'sNevis worth 20,000l. per ann. to the King, and he receives not a shilling of it.

Sir John Knight.] The King sent directions for fortifications at Nevis, which Lord Willoughby neglected.

Mr Waller, to Dunkirk business.] Reasons for the great sum paid. Paying for Dunkirk would entitle it to the crown, and us to the keeping it. The King might as well sell the isle of Wight.

Mr Henry Coventry.] 'Tis as much treason to part with Dunkirk, as disband the guards, both being mentioned in the preamble of the Act for supplying the King.

Sir Robert Howard.] Thinks it was treason to sell the guards, if an enemy was in being. 'Tis the way to confirm somebody else in the sale of Tangier too—A great man has said, if it could not be kept, it might be sold—He has heard the King of France should say, he hoped his next purchase should be London.

Mr Prynne.] Never heard that the selling a place with the King's consent, and the King had the money, was treason; but delivering a fort before reduced to extremity, is treason.

Mr Vaughan.] Dunkirk was an acquisition by arms; and therefore not alienable—Tangier, a portion with his wife, and therefore he might dispose of it—Dunkirk as much the King's dominion as Scotland or Ireland, and to sell it is treason by the Law.—Once, but now repealed. The ultimate power of deciding a doubt in law was in the House of Peers, which was the King in Parliament.

Sir Edward Harley (fn. 17).] The King, apprehending that the Spanish ambassador might importune him for it, bid him prepare an Act for annexing it to the Crown of England— The Act of 1,500,000l. does, he conceives, declare it to be part of the King's dominions. He left there, in ready money, as appears, 9640l. according to the settlement of 600l. a week.—A place of extraordinary relief to us.

Sir Edw. Walpole.] Not conquered by us, but delivered by the King of France.

Mr Coleman.] Will not jurare in verba magistri, reflecting upon Mr Vaughan.

Mr Swynfin.] In the charge of corresponding with Cromwell, alleges the Act of Indemnity.

Mr Vaughan.] The Chancellor might, in his defence, plead that or any other pardon, from the King.

Sir Robert Howard.] Would have him plead to it, that they may know the King's enemies from his friends —and so Col. Sandys.

Mr Dowdswell let slip a word, viz. violent stream against the Chancellor; called to the bar by many; at last put to explain himself—he professed no reflective intention, and humbly craved the pardon of the House.

Mr Hampden (fn. 18).] Spoke to that part of the Act of Indemnity, wherein the person grieved should have his treble damages in any court.

Sir John Denham.] Lord Chancellor could not be out-lawed; but he is not clear in equity—The article of "corresponding with Cromwell" left out.

Mr Thomas.] Makes good, when 'tis convenient, the article of "council-table-orders, against law."

Sir Edward Masters.] Asserts the article of "Quo warrantos" for the corporation of Canterbury.

[The 16th article was then read.]

Sir Robert Howard.] No man can deny that "corresponding with the King's enemies" is treason. If it be not, treason has neither name nor definition.

Sir Thomas Littleton.] Deluding his Majesty in all foreign treaties relating to the late war. Setting out no navy, in expectation of peace, and his undertaking that the French would not engage against us, this last summer, when we expected a peace in April, and had it not till August.

Mr Waller.] He might hold correspondence with the King's enemies, and not betray him to his enemies (fn. 19).

Lord Vaughan.] Desires that "betraying his secret counsels" may be put into the article; it will be made out by a person of honour, that he would have discovered his secret counsels to his enemies. He spoke thrice to this.

Sir John Holland.] Moves that it may be declared by the members who gave the inducement for this head, whether they received information from a foreigner or not.

Mr Henry Coventry.] Possibly a foreign Ambassador, and no oath can be given him.

Mr Garroway.] Said to me and some others privately, it must be in scriptis, or no way proved.

Mr Vaughan.] Achilles was said to be shot-free, and some would have the King to be treason-free—Positively says, it must be from a foreigner, or no way.

Lord Vaughan.] Tied upon his honour not to discover the persons—At last, after some time, brings this answer in writing to the table, "That Lord Clarendon hath deluded his Majesty and the nation in foreign treaties and negotiations relating to the late war, and discovered his Majesty's secret counsels to his enemies."

[The question being propounded, that it may be declared, by the Members that gave the inducement for this head, whether they received information from a foreigner, or not; and the question being put, that the question be put, it passed in the negative.

It was then resolved that these words, "and discovered and betrayed his secret counsels to his enemies," be added to that head.

The 16th article being then read, as amended, "That he hath deluded and betrayed his Majesty and the nation in foreign treaties and negociations relating to the war; and discovered and betrayed his secret counse lsto his enemies:" The question being put, that the Earl of Clarendon, upon this head, be impeached of treason, it passed in the affirmtive 161 to 89.

Then the 17th article was read.]

Mr Thomas.] If required, will communicate the person that will prove Lord Clarendon the divider of the fleet.

Sir Thomas Littleton.] Reminded the house, which he said he would prove, that Sir Edw. Spragge took his orders from Sir William Coventry, after the King had had some consultation with the Earl of Clarendon.

Sir William Coventry replies] He delivered his papers to Mr Secretary Morrice, the Council sitting—Lord Clarendon was not in Council, and saw no instructions:

Mr Marvell.] Moves, that whoever brought in the article of "the King's being unfit for government," would publish the person that gave him that information.

Sir Robert Howard.] The person that informed the House of those words will rise up and speak.

Mr Seymour.] What he said was a general expression, and the person that told him receded from what he had said; but refers it to be spoken to by Sir John Denham.

Sir John Denham.] The words were, the King an inactive person, and undisposed for government—The person has them upon record—A noble person can affirm it.

Mr Waller.] The King no more dishonoured by ill reports, than God by being blasphemed—Moves to have it made an article.

[Resolved, That the Earl of Clarendon be impeached, &c. and that the House carry up the impeachment to-morrow.]

Tuesday, November 12.

[A report was made from the Committee, to which it was referred to examine the matter of speech in Parliament.]

Mr Vaughan reports] 1. That the substance of the information, 5 Car. I. in the King's Bench, against Sir John Elliot, Knight, Denzill Holles (fn. 20), and Benjamin Valentine, Esquires, and the proceedings and judgment thereupon, be reported to the House. 2. That the Resolves of the House of Commons upon the question in the year 1641, concerning the unlawfulness of the said proceedings and judgment, and other unlawful proceedings against the said Elliot, Holles, and Valentine, and other Members of Parliament, 3 Car. I. be reported to the House. 3. That a petition of both Houses to the King, in the year 1641, concerning Privileges of Parliament, be reported to the House. 4. That the case published in the printed reports of Sir George Crooke, Knight, concerning the said judgment of 5 Car. I. and the causes of giving the same, as is published in the said reports, be reported to the House. 5. That the Act of Parliament, 4 Hen. VIII, commonly intituled, An Act concerning Richard Stroude, and the consequence of the said judgment, 5 Car. I. with relation to the said Act, be reported to the House. 6. That the said Act, 4 Hen. VIII. commonly intituled, An Act concerning Richard Stroude, is a general law, extending to indemnify all and every the Members of both Houses of Parliament, in all Parliaments, for and touch ing any Bill, speaking, reasoning, or declaring of any matter or matters in or concerning the Parliament, to be communicated and treated of; and is a declaratory law of the ancient and necessary rights and privileges of Parliament.

Mr Streete.] Acts are general or special; general, which concern the nation; special, which concern a society; and individual, which concern a private person.

Mr Vaughan.] What concerns privilege of Parliament must be a general act, and the most general of all.

[The House agreed with the Committee, that the Act, concerning Richard Stroude, was a general law, &c. &c.]

[Then the House proceeded to the business concerning the Earl of Clarendon, when a motion was made, that the House should carry up the impeachment (fn. 21) of treason to the Lords.]

Mr Vaughan.] In Michael de la Pole's case the whole House went up with the Speaker; but, in what manner, no vestigium—Not for raising doubts we cannot clear; therefore moves to recede from the vote.

[Mr Edward Seymour was ordered to carry it up to the Lords (fn. 22).]

Wednesday, November 13.

[A report was made from the Committee appointed to consider of a way of settling and balancing of trade between England and Scotland.]

Sir Thomas Clifford.] What we lose upon France we gain upon Scotland.—The customs raised from 14,000l. to almost 60,000l.—We get their tallow, and send them candles; their hides, and send them boots and shoes.— Manufactures they have few, because their people run most in clans, and the rest are slaves.—He would have trade continued with Scotland, lest they find other ways to vend their commodities.—Scotland is our Indies, as Colbert calls England the King of France's Indies.—Give them ease, and keep up our own manufactures.

Sir George Downing (fn. 23).] Contra. If the business of trade with them be not determined here, the business will go before the Council, where are some Scots, and so go upon unequal terms, we having no English Members of ours in the Council of Scotland.

[The consideration of this matter was referred to a Committee of the whole House.]

[A report was made, by Sir Robert Brooke, from the Committee of Miscarriages, in reference to Commissioner Pett (fn. 24), and it was resolved, that the matter should be recommitted to the Committee to hear witnesses.]

Thursday, November 14.

[A motion was made to speak against the order made yesterday, for recommitting the matter concerning Commissioner Pett, and leave was given for that purpose.]

Mr Vaughan.] Witnesses are examined in things we properly have cognizance of, as in private Bills.—As to Pett, we have no jurisdiction of the fault to punish it.— We cannot acquit him.—If the witnesses recede, the Lords may punish them, but we cannot absolve him upon witnesses clearing him. Notice has been sent to the person impeached, as to Lord Middlesex.—Witnesses were never examined to hinder indictments.

Sir Thomas Littleton.] Not to impeach Pett solely upon general information, who is a party, and a superior Officer; for, upon the same reason, Pett may impeach an Officer inferior to him, and would have other grounds than barely the General's narrative.—The reporter (who was Sir Robert Brooke) is not to report his judgment only, but the fact, unless ordered by the Committee.

[The Committee was ordered to draw up an impeachment on the whole matter before them.]

Friday, November 15.

[A Petition concerning his Majesty's Plantations in America was read. Upon this business, Mr Garroway in private discourse, occasionally said, The Spanish Plantations drain the kingdom of Spain low of people.—In Mexico, and the Plantations, there are more Spaniards than in Spain; though in Mexico there are many forts of Spaniards, besides Natives, viz. Those of Spanish families born in the Indies, and who, for many generations, have inhabited there; others of half Indians and half Spaniards.— There are, from credible persons, said to be above fifteen thousand coaches in Mexico.

In Virginia there are not twenty thousand Blacks.—The English at their first arrival lose a third part at least.—Those who have lived long in those Plantations are superannuated people, and not spawners, so that they increase little in comparison of the consumption of people.—They have a constant supply out of England, which in time will drain us of people, as now Spain is, and will endanger our ruin, as now the Indies do Spain. Jamaica is so remote, that if it should be full peopled and planted they might set up for themselves, and command trade where they please, and so be of no use to us.

Sir Christopher Mimms, with 800 men, stormed a fort in Jamaica, with 4 or 5000 men in it. They asked him, Who he was? he answered, "A Shoemaker's son of Wapping; and should Oliver the Protector but send a Gentleman against the King of Spain, he would conquer all his Indies."

They change the Viceroy of Mexico every three years for fear of his being absolute.

This Petition was ordered to be committed to the Committee of the whole House, appointed to take into consideration the general balance of trade.]


  • 1. The King had granted Lord Clarendon a large piece of ground near St. James's, to build a house on. He intended a good ordinary house: But not understanding these matters, he was run into a vast charge of 50,000 l. Some called it Dunkirk-House, intimating that it was built by his share of the price of Dunkirk. Others called it Holland-House, because he was thought to be no friend to the war. Burnet. Lord Clarendon says himself, that he was not so much ashamed of any one thing he had done, as he was of the vast expence he had made in the building of his house, which had more contributed to that gust of envy that had so violently shaken him, than any misdemeanor that he was thought to have been guilty of. He adds, that it cost a third part more than he intended. See his life, p. 512.
  • 2. After many days spent in close contrivances and combinations; Mr. Seymour, a young man of great confidence and boldness, stood up in the House of Commons, and spoke long and with great bitterness against the Chancellor, and of his great corruption, &c. Earl of Clarendon's life, p. 445.
  • 3. Third son of the Lord Keeper. He had been ambassador to Sweden, and was afterwards plenipotentiary to France, and secretary of state. From his eldest brother Thomas is descended the present Earl of Coventry.
  • 4. The Earl of Clarendon's eldest son. He was so provoked at the ill usage his father met with, that he struck in violently with the party that opposed the court. Burnet. On King James's accession he was made Lord Privy Seal, and died in 1709.
  • 5. The articles of accusation were these: 1. That the Earl of Clarendon hath designed a standing army to be raised, and to govern the kingdom thereby; advised the King to dissolve this present Parliament; to lay aside all thoughts of Parliaments for the future; to govern by a military power; and to maintain the same by free quarter and contribution. 2. That he hath, in the hearing of many of his Majesty's subjects, falsely and seditiously said, that the King was in his heart a papist, popishly affected; or words to that effect. 3. That he hath received great sums of money for passing the Canary patent, and other illegal patents; and granted illegal injunctions to stop proceedings at law against them, and other illegal patents formerly granted. 4. That he hath advised and procured divers of his Majesty's subjects to be imprisoned, against law, in remote islands, garrisons, and other places; thereby, to prevent them from the benefit of the law, and to introduce, precedents for imprisoning any other of his Majesty's subjects in like manner. 5. That he hath corruptly sold several offices, contrary to law. 6. That he procured his Majesty's customs to be farmed at under rates, knowing the same; and great pretended debts to be paid by his Majesty, to the payment of which his Majesty was not in strictness bound; and hath received great sums of money for procuring the same. 7. That he received great sums of money from the company of vintners, or some of them, or their agents, for enhancing the prices of wines; and for freeing of them from the payment of legal penalties, which they had incurred. 8. That he hath, in short time, gained to himself a greater estate than can be imagined to be lawfully gained in so short a time; and, contrary to his oath, hath procured several grants, under the great seal, from his Majesty, to himself, and his relations, of several of his Majesty's lands, hereditaments, and leases; to the disprofit of his Majesty. 9. That he introduced an arbitrary government in his Majesty's plantations; and hath caused such as complained thereof before his Majesty and council, to be long imprisoned for so doing. 10. That he did reject and frustrate a proposal and undertaking, approved by his Majesty, for the preservation of Nevis and St Christopber's, and reducing the French plantations to his Majesty's obedience, after the commissions were drawn up for that purpose; which was the occasion of our great losses and damages in those parts. 11. That he advised and effected the sale of Dunkirk to the French King, being part of his Majesty's dominions; together with the ammunition, artillery, and all sorts of stores there; and for no greater value, than the said ammunition, artillery, and stores were worth. 12. That the said Earl did unduly cause his Majesty's letters patent, under the great seal, to one Dr. Croucher, to be altered, and the enrollment thereof to be unduly razed. 13. That he hath, in an arbitrary way, examined, and drawn into question, divers of his Majesty's subjects, concerning their lands, tenements, goods and chattels, and properties; determined thereof at the council-table; and stopped proceedings at law, by order of the council-table: and threatened some that pleaded the statutes of 17 Car. I. 14. That he hath caused Quo Warrantos to be issued out against most of the corporations of England, immediately after their charters were confirmed by Act of Parliament; to the intent he might receive great sums of money from them, for renewing their charters; which when they complied withal, he caused the said Quo Warrantos to be discharged, or prosecution thereupon to cease. 15. That he procured the bills of settlement for Ireland, and received great sums of money for the same, in a most corrupt and unlawful manner. 16. That he hath deluded and betrayed his Majesty, and the nation, in foreign treaties and negotiations, relating to the late war; and discovered and betrayed his secret counsels to his enemies. 17. That he was a principal author of the fatal counsel of dividing the fleet, about June 1666. [These articles, which are taken from the Journal, vary in many particulars from those printed in Lord Clarendon's life.]
  • 6. For dangerous words spoken against the King. See Lord Clarendon's life, p. 428 to 434.
  • 7. Colonel Birch was a man of a peculiar character. He had been a carrier at first, and retained still, even to an affectation, the clownishness of his education. He got up in the progress of the war to be a Colonel, and to be concerned in the excise. And at the Restoration he was found to be so useful in managing the excise, that he was put in a good post. He was the roughest and boldest speaker in the house, and talked in the language and phrases of a carrier; but with a beauty and eloquence that was always acceptable. He spoke always with much life and heat; but judgment was not his talent. Burnet.
  • 8. Great uncle to the late Lord Visc. Lonsdale.
  • 9. Captain of foot, and governor of Nevis.
  • 10. Sir Thomas Osborne was a very plausible speaker, but too copious, and could not easily make an end of his discourse. He had been always among the high cavaliers, and missing preferment, he had opposed the court much, and was one of Lord Clarendon's bitterest enemies. Burnet. He was afterwards made Lord Treasurer and Earl of Danby, and at last Duke of Leeds. The present Duke is his great grandson.
  • 11. This expression (said by Lord Clarendon himself to have been laid to his charge by Mr Seymour) was, "That four hundred country gentlemen were only fit to give money, and did not know how an invasion was to be resisted". See his life, p. 445.
  • 12. A few days before this, as appears by the Journal, the House being informed that it would be necessary to receive some informations from his Highness Prince Rupert, and his Grace the Duke of Albemarle, concerning some miscarriages at Chatham and Sheerness, and other matters relating to the war, it is probable that what is here said was in consequence of their informations. This was the first Session of Parliament after the burning of the ships at Chatbam by the Dutch; which being a transaction that highly concerned the honour of the nation, the Commons had interested themselves more particularly in knowing by what fatal neglect it had happened. Accordingly the Duke of Albamarle gave in, October 31. a very circumstantial relation of it, which is preserved in the Journals of the House, and is as follows: "His Majesty having intelligence, that the Dutch fleet had, with their cannon, beaten those from Sheerness that were to defend the place, was pleased, upon Monday the 10th of June, about noon, to command me to repair to Chatham, to take the best order I could, to defend and secure the ships there; and his Majesty gave order to the commissioners of the ordnance to dispatch a train after me, that very day; which I heard came that night to Deptford, and the next day to Gravesend; and I myself went from the Tower of London, at four o' clock that afternoon; and came to Gravesend in the evening. When I came there, I found the fort on Kent side with few guns mounted; and that on Essex side had not above two in it mounted. I thereupon gave order to Sir John Griffith, the governor, to mount as many guns as he could, and to repair the fortifications, to be able to make the best resistance he could, in case the Dutch should advance farther upon the river; part of their fleet being then sailed to the Hope. I also appointed Sir William Jennings to command the men of war and fireships that lay by the fort, till his Royal Highness should farther direct in that particular. And, in regard I found so few guns in the forts mounted, and seeing the Dutch fleet on Tuesday morning, with their top sails loose, in sight of Gravesend; I gave order, that, when the train of artillery should come up to Gravesend, they should stay there till farther orders; for I was in hopes to find Chatham better provided than it was. After I had made this provision there, I went early on Tuesday morning to Chatham, where I found scarce twelve of eight hundred men, which were then in the King's pay, in his Majesty's yards; and these so distracted with fear, that I could have little or no service from them. I had heard of thirty boats, which were provided by the direction of his Royal Highness; but they were all, except five or six, taken away by those of the yards; who went themselves with them, and sent and took them away, by the example of Commissioner Pett, who had the chief command there, and sent away his own goods in some of them. I found no ammunition there, but [what] was in the Monmouth: So that I presently sent to Gravesend, for the train to be sent to me; which got thither about two of the clock the next day. "After I had dispatched this order, I went to visit the chain, which was the next thing to be fortified, for the security of the river; where I found no works for the defence of it. I then immediately set soldiers to work for the raising two batteries, for there were no other men to be got; and, when I had employed them in it, I found it very difficult to get tools; for Commissioner Pett would not furnish us with above thirty, till, by breaking open the stores, we found more. I then directed timber and thick planks to be sent to the batteries; and guns also, that they might be ready to be planted as soon as the batteries were made; and I, in the next place, sent Captain Vintour with his company, to Upnor castle; which I took to be a place very fit to hinder the enemy from coming forward, if they should force the chain: and upon farther consideration, (although I had horse near the fort) lest the enemy should land there, I commanded Sir Edward Scott with his company, for a farther strength of the place, and gave him the charge of it; with orders, to let me know what he wanted for the security thereof. "Having thus provided for Upnor, I considered where to sink ships without the chain, next to the enemy, as a farther security to it. I found five fire-ships, and the Unity, upon the place; and, advising with Commissioner Pett, and the masters of attendance, and the pilot, how to do it, Pett told me, it was their opinion, that, if three ships were sunk at the narrow passage, by the Muscle Bank, the Dutch fleet could not be able to come up; and I, relying upon their experience, who best knew the river, gave orders accordingly for doing it: But, when this was done, they said they wanted two ships more; which I directed them to take and sink. After this, I ordered Sir Edward Spragge to take a boat, and sound whether the sinking of those ships would sufficiently secure the passage; which he did; and found another passage; which the pilot, and masters of attendance, had not before observed to be deep enough for great ships; but it was deep enough for great ships to come in. I thereupon resolved to sink some ships within the chain, and provide some against there should be occasion. "I went then to look after the other ships and batteries, and to see men and all things ready: But I found the guns (which I had before ordered to be there) not yet come down; and, instead of thick oaken planks, of which there were good store in the yards, (as afterwards it appeared) the Commissioner would only send thin planks of deal; saying, he had no other; which proved very prejudicial in the use of them; for they were so weak, that at at every shot the wheels sunk thro' the boards; which put us to a continual trouble to get them out. "About noon, before our batteries were quite raised, the enemy came on to the place where our first ships were sunk. I went on board the Monmouth, with fifty volunteers; and appointed soldiers in other ships, to make the best defence we could, if they had proceeded: But they were so encumbered, before they could clear their way thro' the sunk ships, and find another passage, that the tide was spent; and therefore they advanced no farther that day; whereby we had time to consider what to do against the next attempt. "There were two ships ordered to lie within the chain, to be ready to sink, when occasion should be; and, wanting one ship more to sink in the middle between those two ships, I, that night, ordered the Sancta Maria, a great Dutch prize, to be sunk in the deepest place between the two foresaid ships; and I judged it so necessary to be done that I charged Commissioner Pett, and the masters of attendance, on peril of their lives, to do it by morning; they having time enough before the tide served, to provide things to carry her down. "Commissioner Pett, who had received orders from his Royal Highness, on the 26th of March, to remove the Royal Charles above the dock, had, for about nine or ten weeks, neglected those orders; and, when I was getting all the boats I could (for I wanted many) for carrying materials for the batteries, and ammunition and soldiers for the defence of all our places, he came, and told me, he would carry her up that tide, if he might have boats; which I could not then spare; for, if they were gone, all our batteries must have been neglected; and I could not transport the timber, powder, shot, and men, to them, to resist the enemies, next day: And, besides, it was thought advisable, at that instant, if the Dutch should have landed in the marsh by the crain, she might have been useful, and have hindered them; having guns aboard. "Nevertheless, upon notice shortly after, that there was neither sponge, ladle, powder, nor shot, in her, I sent Captain Millett, commander of the Matthias, about ten in the morning, with orders to Commissioner Pett, to carry her up as high as he could, the next tide; who pretended he could not then do it, because there was but one pilot that would undertake it, and he was employed about sinking ships; and, seeing she was not removed in the morning, I myself spoke to him the said Commissioner Pett, in the evening, in the presence of Colonel Mac Naughton and Capt. Mansfield, to fetch her off that tide: But, notwithstanding these orders, the ship was not removed; but lay there till the enemy took her. On the same morning, by break of day, I went to see what was done about the Sancta Maria; and found men towing her along to the place intended; and they had time enough to do their business; But soon after I had dispersed my orders to the other ships, I looked, and saw the Sancta Maria, by the carelessness of the pilot, and masters of attendance, was run on ground; at which I was much troubled; for, if that ship had been sunk in the place where I had appointed, the Dutch ships could not have got beyond those of ours sunk within the chain; and thereby none of the King's ships, within, could have been destroyed; in regard that our grand ships, within our batteries, would have hindered them from removing our sunk ships. About ten of the clock on Wednesday, the enemy came on with part of their fleet, and two men of war, and five or six fireships; and some other men of war seconding them, they first attempted the Unity, which was placed on the right hand, close without the chain, to defend it, and they took her; and one of their fire-ships struck upon the chain; but it stopped her: Then came another great fire-ship, and, with the weight of them two, the chain gave way; and then the ships came on in that very passage where the Sancta Maria should have been sunk. They burnt the two guardships, and took off the Charles; wherein the boatswain and gunner did not do their duties in firing her; though they say they did attempt it twice, but the fire did not take. This was all that I observed of the enemy's action on Wednesday. "Our next care was to provide against the tide served the next day. I enquired what had been done by Sir Edward Scott at Upnor; and sent him as many of those things he needed, as I could get boats to carry to him; and sent likewise a company more than was formerly ordered, to reinforce the place, in case of landing; and then directed three batteries to be made in the King's yard; but could not get a carpenter, but two, that were running away. I also planted, that night, about fifty cannon in several places, besides those that came with the train of artillery, which were also planted. I stayed all night on the place by the men; and hav ing no money to pay them, all I could do or say, was little enough for their encouragement; for I had no assistance from Commissioner Pett, and no gunners or men to draw on the guns, except the two masters of attendance. "On Thursday morning betimes, Upnor was in pretty [good] condition, and our batteries ready. I got some captains of ships, and other officers, sea-volunteers, that came with me, to ply the guns; and the other land-volunteers did assist to draw them on the batteries. "About noon, the enemy came on with two men of war, and six fire-ships, and some more men of war following them. The first two anchored before Upnor, and played upon it, whilst the fire-ships passed by to the Royal James, the [Royal] Oak, and the [Loyal] London. The two first fireships burned without any effect; but the rest went up, and burned the three ships mentioned: and if we had had but five or six boats, to have cut off the boats of the fire-ships, we had prevented the burning of those ships; but these being burned, as soon as the tide turned, they went back, and made no attempt after. "I had, in the morning before this action, received his Majesty's command to return to London; but I thought it most for his service to stay, till the attempt was over; and then, having left upon the place the Earl of Carlisie, and the Earl of Middleton, to command there until farther orders, I came away about eight in the evening; and, by two in the morning, arrived at London." The House, upon reading the Narrative of the Duke of Albemarle, finding Commissioner Pett charged with great and high crimes; and being informed, that he was at liberty, walking in the hall: Ordered, That Commissioner Pett be forthwith apprehended, and brought to the bar of this House; to answer such matters, as shall be demanded of him. Commissioner Pett being accordingly brought to the bar; and such matters of the narrative of the Duke of Albemarle, as did concern him, being read; he declared, that many of them were new; and desired time to give answer thereunto: And, being withdrawn, Resolved, &c. That the Narratives of his Highness Prince Rupert, and his Grace the Duke of Albemarle, be transferred to the Committee appointed to examine the miscarriage of the late war; and that the matter concerning Commissioner Pett be referred to the farther examination of that Committee.
  • 13. Duncombe was a judicious man, but very haughty, and apt to raise enemies against himself. He was an able Parliament-man; but could not go into all the designs of the court; for he had a sense of religion, and a zeal for the liberty of his country. Burnet. He was at this time a Commissioner of the ordnance.
  • 14. The 3d son of the Lord Keeper, and brother to Sir William. He had been Ambassador to Sweden, and was afterwards Secretary of State, and Plenipotentiary to France. From his eldest brother Thomas is descended the present Earl of Coventry.
  • 15. Clarges was a very considerable Parliament-man; and valued himself on his opposing the Court, and on his frugality in managing the public money; for he had Cromwell's economy ever in his mouth, and was always for reducing the expence of war to the modesty and parsimony of those times. The Duke of Albemarle married his sister. Burnet.
  • 16. They spent a whole day upon the first head, which they thought contained enough to do their work, it containing the most unpopular and ungracious reproach that any man could lie under; but after a Debate of eight hours it was declared by all the lawyers of the House, "That how foul soever the charge seemed to be, yet it contained no High Treason." Lord Clarendon's life, p. 449.
  • 17. Knight of the Bath. He was governor of Dunkirk when that town was sold, and was great grandfather to the present Earl of Oxford. He strenuously opposed the sale of Dunkirk, and by his interest in the House of Commons procured a Bill to be brought in, at the Restoration, for annexing it inseparably to the Crown. But it was laid aside after being once read.
  • 18. Eldest son of the famous patriot. He had before been chosen one of the five Knights of the shire for Bucks, by the Protector in his Parliament 1656, who also about the same time created him a Lord, or a member of his Upper House. Atb. Oxon. vol. ii.
  • 19. This was no sooner said than a young confident man, the Lord Vaughan, son to the Earl of Carbery, a person of as ill a face as same, his looks and his manners both extreme bad, asked for the paper, that had been presented from the Committee, and with his own hand entered these words, " That being a Privy Counsellor, he had betrayed the King's secrets to the enemy," see Lord Clarendon's life, vol. iii. p. 355.
  • 20. Afterwards Lord Holles.
  • 21. This impeachment was to the following effect, viz. My Lords, "The Commons, assembled in Parliament, having received information of divers traiterous practices and designs of a great Peer of this House, Edward Earl of Clarendon, have commanded me to impeach the said Earl of Clarendon of treason, and other high crimes and misdemeanors: And I do here, in their names, and in the names of all the Commons of England, impeach Edward Earl of Clarendon of treason, and other high crimes and misdemeanors. I am farther commanded, by the House of Commons, to desire your Lordships, that the Earl of Clarendon may be sequestred from Parliament, and forthwith committed to safe custody. They have farther commanded me to acquaint your Lordships, that they will, within a convenient time, exhibit to your Lordships the articles of the charge against him."
  • 22. By a mistake, instead of the Earl of Clarendon's impeachment, the Earl of Strafford's, which lay on the table, was put into Mr Seymour's hands, and he was obliged to trust to his memory when he came to the Lords bar; but he afterwards delivered a paper of the impeachment to the Clerk.
  • 23. He had been Resident in Holland, first from Cromwell, and then from the King. "He was a man (says Clarendon) of an obscure birth and more obscure education, and had passed through many offices in Cromwell's army of chaplain, scoutmaster and other employments."
  • 24. This affair was grounded on the narrative, &c. of the Duke of Albemarle, which see, p. 24-27. Commissioner Pett was brought to the bar the same day, and sent to the Tower. The articles of impeachment against him were reported on the 27th of November; and on the 19th of December, on his petition, he was allowed his liberty on susfficient bail.