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while others of us unawares fell upon the soldiers at the Mews? Easy then to proclaim King Charles in the City; after which Prince Rupert arriving with ‘Ten-thousand Irish, English and French,’ and all the Royalists rising,—-the King should have his own again, and we were all made men; and Oliver once well_ killed, thc Commonwealth itself were as good as dead! Saturday, the 20th of May : then, say our Paris expresses, then !—
Alas, in the very birthtime of the hour, ‘five of the Conspiraters are seized in their beds ;’ Gerard, Vowel, all the leaders are seized ; Somerset Fox confesses for his life ; whosoever is guilty can be seized : and the Plot is like water spilt upon the ground! A High Court of Justice must decide upon it; and with Gerard and Vowel it will probably go hard.
Rsrnns to a small private or civic matter: the Vicarage of ChristChurch, Newgate Street, the patronage of which belongs to ‘the Mayor, Commonalty and Citizens of London as Governors of the Royal Hospital of St. Bartholomew’ ever since Henry the Eighth’s time.* The former incumbent, it would seem, had been removed by the Council of State; some Presbyterian probably, who was not without cause offensive to them. If new the Electors and the State could both agree on Mr. Turner,—it would ‘ silence’ several questions, thinks the Lord Protector. Whether they did agree '! Who ‘ Mr. Turner,’ of such ‘ repute for piety and learning,’ was’.l These are questions.
It is not my custom now, nor shall be,without some special cause moving, [to interpose anything to the hindrance of any in the free course of their presenting persons in the Public Miuistrv.
\ ‘ Elmes's Topographical Dictionary of London, in we;
But, well considering how much it concerns the public peace, and what an opportunity may be had of promoting the interest of the Gospel, if some eminent and fit person of a pious and peaceable spirit and conversation were placed in Christ-Church,—and though Iam not ignc~ rant what interest the State may justly challenge to supply the place, which by an Order of State is become void, notwithstanding any resignation that is made: '
Yet forasmuch as your Lordship and the rest of the Governors of St. Bartholomew’s Hospital are about to present thereunto a person of known nobility and integrity before you, namely Mr. Turner, I am contented, if you think good so to improve the present opportunity as to present him to the place, ‘ and thus ’ to have all other questions silenced; -—which will not alone be the fruit thereof; but I believe also the true good of the Parish therein concerned will be thereby much farthered. I rest, Your assured friend,
‘ OLIVER. P.
- ‘P. S.’ I can assure you few men of his time in England have a better repute for piety and learning than Mr. Turner.*
I am apt to think the Mr. Turner in question may have been Jerom Turner, of whom there is record in Wood :1‘ a Semersetshire man, distinguished among the Puritans; who takes refuge in Southampton, and preaches with zeal, learning, piety and general approbation during the Wars there. He afterwards removed ‘to Neitherbury, a great country Parish in Dorsetshire,’ and continued there, ‘ doing good in his zealous way.’ If this were he, the Election did not take effect according toOliver’s program ;_ perhaps Jerom himself declined it? He died, still at Neitherbury, next year ; hardly yet past middle age. ‘ He had a strong memory, which he maintained good to the last by temperance,’ says old Antony: ‘He was well skilled in Greek and Hebrew, was a fluent preacher, but too much addicted to Calvinism,’-— which is to be regretted. ‘Paslor vz'gilaniissimus, docirinzi et pietale insignis :’ so has his Medical Man characterized him ; one ‘ Dr. Loss, of Dorchester,’ who kept a Note-book in those days. _Requiescat, requiescant. ’
‘ Lansdowne Mss., 1236, fol. 104. The Signature alone of the Letter is Oliver’s ; but he has added the Postscript in his own hand. 1' Athena, iii., 404
The High Court of Justice has sat upon Vowel and Gerard; found them both guilty of High Treason: they lie under sentence of death, while this Letter is a-writing; are executed five days hence, 10th July, 1654; and make an edifying end.* Vowel was hanged at Charing Cross in the morning ; strong for Church and King. The poor young Gerard, being of gentle blood and a soldier, petitioned to have beheading ; and Had it, the same evening, in the Tower. So ends Plot First. Other Royalists, Plotters or suspect of Plotting,—Ashburnham, who rode with poor Charles First to the Isle of \Vight on a past occasion ; Sir Richard Willis, who, I think, will be useful to Oliver by and by,--these and a list of others'j' were imprisoned ; were questioned, dismissed ; and the Assassin Project is rather lcowed down for a while.
Writs for the New Parliament are out, and much electioneering interest over England: but there is still an anecdote con_ nected with this poor Gerard and the 10th of July, detailed at great length in the old Books, which requires to be mentioned here. About an hour after Gerard, there died, in the same place by the same judicial axe, a Portuguese N obleman, Don Pantaleon Sa, whose story, before this tragic end of it, was already somewhat twisted up with Gerard’s. To wit, on the 23d of November last this same young Major Gerard was walking in the crowd of Exeter ’Change, where Don Pantaleon, Brother of the Portuguese Ambassador, chanced also to be. Some jostling of words, followed by drawing of rapiers, took place between them; wherein as Don Pantaleon had rather the Worst, he hurried home to the Portuguese Embassy; armed some twenty of his followers, in headpieces, breastpieces, with sword and pistol, and returned to seek revenge. Gerard was gone; but another man, whom they took for him, these rash Portugals slew there; and had to be repressed, after much other riot, and laid in custody, by the watch or soldiery. Assize-trial, in consequence, for Don Panta_ leon; clear Trial in the ‘ Upper Bench Court,’ jury halft'oreigners ; and rigorous sentence of death ;—much to Don Pantaleon’s amazement, who pleaded and got his Brother to plead the rights
' State Trials (London, 1810), v., 516—39.
of Ambassadors, all manner of rights and considerations ; all to no purpose. The Lord Protector would not and could not step. betweena murderer and the Law : poor Don Pantaleon perished on the same block with Gerard ; two Tragedies, once already in contact, had their fifth-act together. Don Pantaleon’s Brother, all sorrow and solicitation being fruitless, signed the Portuguese l‘reaty that very day, and instantly departed for his own countrv with such thoughts as we may\figure.*
BUT now the new Parliament has got itself elected ; not without much interest :—the first Election there has been in England for fourteen years past. Parliament of Four-hundred, thirty Scotch, thirty Irish; freely chosen according to the Instrument, according to the Bill that was in progress when the Rump disappeared. What will it say to these late inarticulate births of Providence, and high transactions '? Something edifying, one may hope.
Open Malignants, as we know, could not vote or be voted for, to this Parliament; only active Puritans or quiet Neutrals, who had clear property to the value of 200l. Probably as fair 9. Representative as, by the rude method of counting heads, could well be got in England. The bulk of it, I suppose, consists of constitutional Presbyterians and use-and-wont Neutrals; it well represents the arithmetical account of heads in England: whether the real divine and human value of thinking-souls in England,—that is a much deeper question; upon which the Protector and this First Parliament of his may much disagree. It is the question of questions, nevertheless; and he that can answer it best will come best off in the long-run. It was not a successful Parliament this, as we shall find. The Lord Protector and it differed widely in certain fundamental notions they had !— .
IVe recognize old faces, in fair proportion, among those Fournundred ;—many new withal, who never become known to us. Learned Bulstrode, now safe‘ home from perils in Hyperborean countries, is here ; elected for several places, the truly valuable man. Old-Speaker Lenthall sits, old Major-General Skippon, old Sir William Masham, old Sir Francis Rouse. My Lord Herbert (Earl of Worcester’s son) is here ; Owen, Doctor of Divinity, for Oxford University ;—a certain not entirely useless Guibon Goddard, for the Town of Lynn, to whom we owe some Notes of the procedure. Leading Officers and high Official persons have