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Newsletters - Sir William Clarke, The Clarke Papers. Selections from the Papers of William Clarke, vol. 4 
The Clarke Papers. Selections from the Papers of William Clarke, Secretary to the Council of the Army, 1647-1649, and to General Monck and the Commanders of the Army in Scotland, 1651-1660, ed. C.H. Firth (London: Longmans, Green, and Co., 1901). 4 vols.
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August 16, 1659.—
xxxi. f. 193.Saturday last the House was resolved into a Grand Committee upon the bill for union for Scotland and Ireland, and are to resume it Thursday next. They ordered Doctour Samuell Winter to come over from Ireland and attend the pleasure of the House, and passed the bill for setling the militia of the Isle of Wight, and passed likewise that of second moities. Yesterday they ordered Mr. Needham to write the newes as formerly, and Mr. Can to bee referred to the Councill for a salary or an imployment.1 Since my last there hath bin 4 insurrections: one in the county of Nottingham by the Lord Biron, Collonel White, and Mr. Francis Pierepont’s heire (a prisoner) who hath 5000li. per annum, and the party disperct by the county troope; another in Leicestershire, which is inconsiderable; a third in Darby towne, who after they had gotten 4000li. of the excise and assesment, were disperst by 3 troopes sent from the Lord Lambert; and a forth in Surry by the Lord Leechfeeld, who were dispers’t by the county troope, a party of the life guard, and a party of Collonel Hacker’s horse, but they are since gone into Sussex. The Earle of Rutland assured the Lord Fleetewood that Belvoire is kept by some of his owne servants at present, and at his excellencies dispose when he pleased to comand it. Charles Stewart and the Duke of York are privately withdrawne from the Prince of Orange’s; severall places in England are layd for them. The Lord Stamford dranke their healths to parte of the county troope, when they came for 4 horses at which hee was assessed. Sir George Booth’s parte was at Warrington Sunday last, and the Lord Lambert’s at Stafford, his march having bin much interrupted by greate floods in those parts. This day the House was in a Grand Committee upon the government, some being for successive Parliaments and a Councill, others to have it referred to a committee who receive proposalls from the army or any others.
xxxi. f. 195.Heere hath bin stronge indeavours to raise commotions in and about the citty of London, which have bin hitherto prevented, and the enemies, wheresoever they have appeared, have bin broken and scatter’d. Uppon the Lord’s day last wee had an account of the Earle of Stamford’s declaring for the King, and of his gathering together two or 300 persons in armes, Major Babington being with them; butt uppon an intimacion that some companies of Colonel Biscoe’s and Colonel Salmon’s regiments, att that time uppon their march towards Major Generall Lambert quartering within 10 miles of the Earle of Stamford’s, were with some militia horse making towards them, the whole company with the Earle dispersed, and the Earle himself is now prisoner in Lecester.1 Att the same time the Lord Byron and Colonel White, with some other gentlemen, gather’d together about 120 horse, in Sherwood Forrest neere Nottingham, were falne uppon by the county troope there and beaten, and their colours taken, and the enemy pursued about 12 miles by the county troope.2 Colonel White and some few that escaped to Derby, coming in thither uppon the markett day and declaring for a free Parliament (under pretence wherof they deceive many persons and perswade them into a conjunction with them), they there gather’d a partie together, uppon notice wherof Major Generall Lambert sent some horse towards that place, uppon whose approach that partie alsoe scattered, and the country remaynes in quiett, as alsoe doe all places except Cheshire and Lancashire. Major Generall Lambert, with about 8 regiments of horse and foote, will bee this day before Chester.
August 20, 1659.—
xxxi. f. 196.Since my last there is come over from Ireland 1000 foote under Collonel Axtell’s comand, and 500 horse under Collonel Sanky, and by this time they are march’t from Holyhead to West Chester, before which the Lord Lambert is sett downe to refresh his army.3 50 pair of pistolls, 12 good horses and 6 men were taken yesterday in Hartfordshire. It’s said the party was to have bin commanded by Sir William Compton. 50 pair of pistolls likewise were seized going to the house of a Member of Parliament.4 A greate jealousie was last night heere of an insurrection in this citty, which occasioned the guards to bee trebled. A trumpett with 2 ministours came Wensday last with an expresse from Sir George Booth and Sir Thomas Midleton to the Lord Lambert, shewing the ground of their raising up in armes, and desiring a treaty before any blood was shedd in the quarrell, which the Lord Lambert agreed unto if they would lay downe their armes; but having taken them up without authority, hee is comanded by the Parliament to reduce them to obedience, which he is by God’s assistance resolved to doe. The House approved of what the Lord Lambert and the Commissioners of Ireland had done in listing of men; they ordered a proclamacion to bee issued forth against the Earle of Northamton, and Earle of Leechfeild, Major Generall Browne, Sir Thomas Leventhorpe, Sir William Compton, and Mr. Fanshawe.
xxxi. f. 197.This evening about 7 of the clock came to the Councill of State one of their messengers from the Lord Lambert with this message, vizt. Remember me to my frinds of the Councill, and tell them the enemy is routed, and as soone as I can I will send the perticulars. The messenger said hee sawe 3 of the enemies colors, redd, white and blew, and 6 or 7 men kill’d, and said the engagement was at a stone bridge neer Northwich, and after a sharp conflict the enemy fell into disorder, and ran 2 wayes, part towards Chester and part towards Lancashire; they as went towards Chester were pursued, and the Lord Lambert was drawing out part of his forces to send towards them as ran Lancashire ward. A more perticular account is expected shortly.1 The last night the citty, or rather our enimies in it, alarm’d us with threats to distroy us, which occasioned our horse and foote to drawe out and march about the streets, and the Lord Maiour was up alsoe and with the citty forces, and soe they stired not to molest us.
August 25, ’59.—
xxxi. f. 200.Yesterday Sir George Booth was taken in womens apparell at Newport Pagnell,1 where alighting from behind a servant and off a pillion without a cloth at the Reed Lyon (the only well affected inne there), the Master of the house takeing him off and finding him ponderous, his stepps very long, desireing a private and inward chamber, was jealous that he was a man in womenes apparell; and sending two maid servants to attend him they found he was called by the name of Mrs. Dorothy, and they inviteing her into an other chamber for the convenience of her sex, she refused, but rather chose to repose her selfe upon a bed in the same roome, where one of the maides espied her foote to be some thing bigg and her shooe to be broad toed, came downe and tould her Master that shee beleived Mrs. Dorothy was a man in woman’s apparell, which confirmeing his owne former jealousie, sent the maids up againe to make some further discoverry; and comeing in they found the men lookeing about the roome for holes or crevises, and placeing a screene (which they had out of the next chamber) before those in the doore to prevent any inspectione into the chamber. After a more plentifull supper then such seemeing ordinary guests usually have, a barber was required, who shaveing two of the men, one of them bought a razure and a wash ball of him. The Master of the inne sending for 10 well affected neighbours, told them the grounds of his jealousies, who armeing them selves, about one in the morneing breake open Mrs. Dorothy’s chamber doore, who runing her breast against one of the men’s pistolls cryed for quarter. They demaunded what she was; she said a Gentlewoman travelling out of Derbyshire toward London. They replyed she was noe woman but a man, and demaunded his name. Then he told them there was the providence of God seen in his discovery, and therefore he would not conceale his name, but confes’t it was Sir George Booth, at which they were more astonished then hee were before affrighted. They procured a gentleman’s suite of clothes for him in that towne, bought him a new hatt and a new paire of bootes, and sent him away presently with a guard. The House comited him to the Tower close prisoner, and not to have benifitt of penn, incke, or paper, and appointed Sir Henry Vane, Sir Arthur Heslerigg, and Majour Salway to examen him. This day he denyed the proclameing of Charles Stewart by his order, or houlding any correspondencie with him, but confes’t hee meet frequently with Mr. Mordent, his agent, when he was last in London. This day the House ordred that the said comittee should further examen him as they saw occasione. They ordered the bill for sequestering the new Delinquents’ estates should looke backe and commence from the yeare 1658. They approved of the secureing of Sir Anthony Ashly Cooper upon the discovery of severall letters of his which were lately intercepted.1 I humbly subscribe myselfe.
August 27, 1659.—
xxxi. f. 203.This afternoone report was made that Sir George Booth had confest further to the committee that his Lady had a letter from Charles Stewart, but would not say hee had any comission from him; that the first of the last month was the intended day for a generall insurrection, and the 8th was to land with 5000 men at Lyn; and that there was a list of 300 of the Nobility and Gentry engaged herein, which in time may bee produced by him.
August 27, 1659.—
xxxi. f. 203.The Act of Union was yesterday under consideracion of the Grand Committee, wherin they made some progresse, butt have recommitted itt, and order’d a report on Friday next.1 The clause or provisoe of liberty for tender consciences has occasioned some debate about the wording of itt, there being contrary parties engaged in itt. There is a clause under consideracion as one, that rebellion in Scotland shall render the Union null, another for naturalization, a third that treason shall bee adjudged according to the English lawes.
[1 ]Needham had been removed from the post of editor of the Public Intelligencer on May 13, and replaced by John Canne (Commons’ Journals, vii. 652).
[1 ]Mercurius Politicus, August 11-18, p. 673; Public Intelligencer, August 15-22, p. 686.
[2 ]See Life of Colonel Hutchinson, ii. 220, 389, ed. 1885.
[3 ]See Ludlow’s Memoirs, ii. 110-13.
[4 ]See Cornet Boteler’s letter, Tanner MSS. li. 133.
[1 ]Lambert’s account of Sir George Booth’s defeat, which is dated Northwich, August 20, was read in Parliament on August 22. It was sent by Captain Brown, of Colonel Hewson’s regiment, and is printed under the title of The Lord Lambert’s Letter to the Speaker concerning the Victory over the Rebels under Sir George Booth. In two other letters, dated the next day, Lambert announced the surrender of Chester; and with them was also printed a letter from Major Edmund Waring, the Governor of Shrewsbury, relating occurrences in Chester after Booth’s defeat. The original of Waring’s letter is amongst the Tanner MSS. (li. 131). These three letters are printed as A Second and Third Letter from the Lord Lambert, &c. Chirk Castle, which had been garrisoned by the Royalists, surrendered to Lambert on August 24, and in the letter announcing its fall he was able to say, ‘There is now no visible enemy appearing in these parts’ (The Public Intelligencer, August 22-29, p. 687). The fullest account of Booth’s defeat on the Royalist side is that by Mr. Mordaunt, Clarendon State Papers, iii. 552; see also Ludlow, ii. 113.
[1 ]See A True Narrative of the Taking of Sir George Booth on Tuesday last, 4to, 1659.
[1 ]See Whitelocke, Memorials, iv. 349, 361; Ludlow, Memoirs, ii. 116. On September 14 Cooper was voted not guilty of the charge (Commons’ Journals, vii. 778).
[1 ]The business of the Union was in charge of Bulstrode Whitelocke, who introduced the Bill on July 30, 1659. He records a complimentary letter from Monck to himself on the subject, and says also that Monck wished to persuade him to become one of the Commissioners for the government of Scotland (Memorials, iv. 349, 352, 355, 363). On the proviso mentioned, see next page.