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No. 30. From 1654-1655: Vowel's Plot; RECTORY OF HOUGHTON CONQUEST; PENRUDDOCK's Plot; NEW ENGLAND. ..

. .. (Vol. iii. p. 206.] 1. Another wholly insignificant Official Note to Mazarin, in regard to Vowel's Plot, and the dismissal of M. De Baas for his complicity in it. De Baas, whom some call Le Baas, or rightly Le Bas, was a kind of subsidiary Agent despatched by Mazarin early in the Spring of 1653-4 "to congratulate the new Protector," that is, to assist Bourdeaux, who soon after got the regular title of Ambassador, in ascertaining how a Treaty could be made with the new Protector, or, on the whole, what was to be done with England and him. Hitherto, during the Dutch War and other vicissitudes, there had been a mixed undefinable relation between the two Countries, rather hostile than neutral. The “Treaty and firm Amity," as we know, had its difficulties, its delays; in the course of which it occurred to M. Le Bas that perhaps the Restoration of Charles Stuart, by Vowel and Company, might be a shorter cut to the result. Examination of Witnesses, in consequence: examination of Le Bas himself by the Protector and Council, in consequence; mild hint to Le Bas that he must immediately go home again. *

*Eminentissimo Cardinali Mazarino.' EMINENTISSIME CARDINALIS, In Litteris Nostris ad Regem datis, causas et rationes recensuimus quare Dominum De Baas ex hâc Republicâ excedere jussi-, mus, et Majestatem Suam certam fecimus, Nos, non obstante hâc dicti de Baas machinatione, cujus culpam ei solummodo imputamus, in eâdem adhuc sententiâ perstare, firmam arctamque Pacem et Amicitiam cum Galliâ colendi et paciscendi. Atque hâc occasione gratum nobis est priorá illa propenso nostro erga vos et res vestras voluntatis indicia et testimonia renovare; quam etiam, datâ subinde occasione, palam facere et luculenter demonstrare parati erimus. Interea Eminentiam vestram Divinæ benignitatis præsidio commendamus. Dab. ex Albâ Aulâ, vicesimo nono Junii an. 1654.

OLIVERIUS P.8 * Depositions concerning him (April, May, 1654), Thurloe, ii. 309, 351-3: notice of his first arrival (February 1653-4), ib. 113. See also ib. 379, 437.

& From the Archives du Ministère des Affaires Etrangères, at Paris. Communicated by Thomas Wright, Esq. F. S. A, &c.

Of which, if it be worth translation, this is the English:

“Most EMINENT CARDINAL,- In our Letter to the King "we have set forth the grounds and occasions moving us to "order M. De Baas to depart from this Commonwealth; and · “have assured his Majesty, that notwithstanding this deceit of “the said De Baas, the blame of which is imputed to him alone, "we persist as heretofore in the same purpose of endeavouring "and obtaining a firm and intimate Peace and Amity with France. And it gives us pleasure, on this occasion, to renew “those former testimonies of our good inclination towards you "and your interests; which also, as opportunity offers, we shall "in future be ready to manifest and clearly demonstrate. In "the mean while, we commend your Eminency to the keeping of “the Almighty.

“OLIVER P.” “Whitehall, 29th June 1654.”

2. PRESENTATION TO THE RECTORY OF HOUGHTON CONQUEST. Communicaled to me" (Thomas Baker, the Cambridge Antiquary), “by my

4 worthy friend Brown Willis Esq., of whaddun Hall in Com. Bucks, from the original Presentation in the hands of a friend of his."

OLIVER P. QLivÉR, Lord Protector of the Commonwealth of England, Scotland and Ireland, and the dominions thereunto belonging, to the Commissioners authorised by a late Ordinance for Approbation of Public. Preachers, or "to" any five of them, greeting. We present John Pointer to the Rectory of Hough. ton Conquest in the county of Beldford, void by the death of the late Incumbent, and to our presentation belonging; to the end he may be approved-of by them, and admitted thereunto, with all its rights, members and appurtenances whatsoever, according to the tenor of the aforesaid Ordinance. · Given at Whitehall, the 29th of September 1654.

! 3. DESIGN AGAINST THE SPANISH WEST INDIENS.

(Vol. iii. pp. 274, 323.) Our great Design against the Spaniards in the West Indies is still called only "a Design by Sea," and kept very secret.

Harl. M89. no. 7053, f.153.

Proper, however, as the rumours probably are loud, to give the Parliament, now sitting, some hint of it. Hence this Letter; of no moment otherwise. Unluckily “the right-hand border of the Paper is now much worn away; so that several words are wanting, - conjecturally supplied here, in italics. To Our right trusty and well-beloved William Lenthall, Esquire, Speaker of v a

: the Parliament. Mr. SPEAKER,'.

Whitehall, 220 September 1654. I have, by advice of the Council, undertaken a Design by Sea, very much (as we hope and judge) for the honour and advantage of the Commonwealth; and have already made the preparations requisite for such an undertaking. But before I proceed to the execution thereof, the Parliament being now convened, I thought it agreeable to my trust to communicate to them the aforesaid resolution, and not to desire the delay thereof any longer (although I suppose you may be engaged, at the present, in matters of greater weight); because many miscarriages will fall out in this Business through delay, as well in providing of the charge as otherwise; the well-timing of such a Design being as considerable as anything about it. And therefore I desire you to take your first opportunity to acquaint the House with the contents of this Letter, wherein I have forborne to be more particular, because there are several persons in Parliament who know this whole Business, and can inform the House of all particulars, if the House do judge it to be consistent with the nature of the Design to have it offered to them particularly: - which I refer to their consideration; and rest,

Your assured friend, OLIVER P.S .

. 4. NEW APPOINTMENTS; ANNOUNCEMENT OF THEM TO THE

PARLIAMENT. *.

OLIVER P. To Our right trusty and right well-beloved William Lenthall, Esquire, Speaker

of the Parliament. RIGHT TRUSTY AND RIGHT WELL-BELOVED, We greet you well. It being expressed in the Thirty-fourth

* "Autograph Letter throughout." Copy penes me; reference (Tanner M88. no doubt) is unfortunately lost. — See Commons Journals, vii. 369 (22d September 1654), for the Return made.

Article of the Government, That the Chancellor, Keeper or Commissioners of the Great Seal, the Treasurer, Admiral, Chief Governors of Ireland and Scotland, and the Chief Justices of both the Benches, shall be chosen by the approbation of Parliament, and in the intervals of Parliament by the approbation of the major part of the Council, to be afterwards approved by the Parliament; and several Persons of integrity and ability having been appointed by Me (with the Council's approbation) for some of those Services before the meeting of the Parliament; - I have thought it necessary to transmit unto you, in the enclosed Schedule, the names of those Persons, to the end that the resolution of the Parliament may be known concerning them: which I desire may be with such speed as the other public occasions of the Commonwealth will admit. And so I bid you heartily farewell.

Given at Whitehall, this Fifth day of October 1654.8

Enclosure is endorsed: “The Schedule inclosed in his Highnes Letter of ye 5th of October 1654." - "Read October 5th, 1654; and again, 6th Oct.”. CHARLES FLEETWOOD, Esquire. .. Deputy of Ireland. BULSTRODE WHITLOCKE, Esquire . ) Commissioners Sir THOMAS WIDDRINGTON, Knt. •

of the

Great Seal of England. John LISLE, Esquire. iii....) The Three Commissioners of the

Great Seal above-named .... THE LORD CHIEF JUSTice ROLLE . ( Commissioners of the THE LORD CHIEF JUSTICE ST. JOHN Treasury. EDWARD MONTAGUE, Esquire . i. WILLIAM SYDENHAM, Esquire ...) HENRY ROLLE...........

Chief Justice of the Court

of Upper Bench. OLIVER ST. JOHN ...........1' of Common Pleas.

i Chief Justice of the Court 5 and 6. The following Two Letters, one of which is clearly of Thurloe's composition, have an evident reference to Penruddock's affair; they find their place here. . .

§ Original, with the Great Seal attached, in Tanner mss., lii. 135. See Commons Journals, vii. 378 (24th October 1654).

Sergeant Wilde, now more properly Lord Chief Baron Wilde is a Worcester man; sat in the Long Parliament for that City, very prominent all along in Law difficulties and officialities, – in particular, directly on the heel of the Second Civil War, Autumn 1648, he rode circuit, and did justice on offenders, without asking his Majesty's opinion on the subjecs; which was thought a great feat on his part. * Shortly after which he was made Chief Baron, and so continues, - holding even now the Spring Assizes at Worcester, I think. Thurloe, as we said, appears to have shaped this Letter into words; only the signature and meaning can be taken as Oliver's. Unluckily too, either Mrs. Warner the Editress must have misread the date “25th” for 24th, or else Thurlue himself in his haste have miswritten, forgetting that it was New Year's Day overnight, that it is not now 1654 but 1655. We will take the former hypothesis; and correct Mrs. Warner's " 25th,” which in this case makes a whole year of difference.

For Sir John Wilde, Sergeant-at-Law, and the rest of the Justices of Peace

for the County of Worcester, or any of them ,' to be communicated to the rest; 01, in his absence, to Nicholas Lechmore, Esq., Worcester. GENTLEMEN,

Whitehall, 24th March 1654. We doubt not but you have heard before this time of the hand of God going along with us, in defeating the late rebellions Insurrection. And we hope that, through His blessing upon our labours, an effectual course will be taken for the total disappointment of the whole Design. Yet knowing the resolution of the common Enemy to involve this Nation in new calamities, we conceive ourselves, and all others entrusted with preserving the peace of the Nation, obliged to endeavour in their places to prevent and defeat the Enemy's intentions: and therefore, as a measure especially conducing to that end,

We do earnestly recommend to you To take order that diligent Watches (such as the Law hath appointed) be daily kept, for taking a strict account of all strangers in the Country. Which will not only be a means to suppress all loose and idle persons; but may probably cause some of those who come from abroad to kindle fires here, to be apprehended and

Thanked by the Parliament (Commons Journals, vi. 49, 10th October

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