The Annals of Bristol in the Seventeenth Century

By John Latimer

Author of “Annals of Bristol in the Eighteenth and Nineteenth Centuries”.

Transcriptions by Rosemary Lockie, © Copyright 2013


As existing houses in King Street and other localities bear witness, the dwellings constructed at this period were chiefly composed of wood and plaster, worked stone being considered too expensive for ordinary use, and bricks being reserved for fire-places and chimneys. In an ordinance for the Tilers' and Plasterers' Company, passed by the Council this year, it was decreed that if a member should cause any gentleman's house to be lathed outside, or in the front, with “sappy laths”, he should be fined 6s. 8d. The same penalty was imposed on any member who lent a ladder to a carpenter or a mason, to the prejudice of the Company.

In 1671, James Millerd, mercer, published what he styled “An exact delineation of the famous Cittie of Bristoll and suburbs thereof. Composed by a Scale, and Ichnographically described by I.M., 1671”. The engraving, which measures 9 inches by 10, was “printed for ye author and sold by Mr. Tho. Wall, Bookseller, in Bristoll”. The success of the publication was so great that Mr. Millerd was induced to venture upon what was, for the age, a truly remarkable production, unexampled in the provinces. This was a plan of the city extending over four sheets, adorned with views of many of the public buildings, and professing to show “all the highways, thoroughfares, streets, lanes, and publick passages. . . . Described, Engraved, and Published by In. Millerd, Citizen and Inhabitant”. A copy having been presented to the Corporation, to whom the engraving was dedicated, the Council, in May, 1673, after eulogising


the plan as “the largest, exactest, and handsomest that ever was drawn”, ordered that the author be thanked, and presented with a piece of plate value £10. A similar gift of the value of £5 was voted to Millerd by the Merchants' Society. The enterprising mercer subsequently published a third engraving - now extremely rare - a perspective view of the city, taken from the southern heights. This print is supposed to have been also dedicated to the Corporation, but the Council showed no appreciation of the compliment, and in the extant impressions the place reserved for an inscription is veiled by curtains.

About the time that Millerd was publishing his first plan, certain local commissioners appointed by Act of Parliament for assessing and collecting a new tax upon the citizens were engaged in estimating the yearly value of the real and personal property of the inhabitants. (The statute terms the tax a “subsidy”, but it was in fact a charge of one shilling in the pound on rentals and stocks, levied, not upon individuals, but upon parishes.) The assessments preserved at the Council House are not complete, the returns for St. James's, Redcliff, St. Stephen's, and St. Peter's being omitted; but, so far as can be made out, the annual value of real property within the city was estimated at about £18,500. The twentieth assessed on St. Nicholas's parish amounted to £159 5s. St. Thomas's paid £129 12s.; Christ Church, £76 16s.; Castle Precincts, £63 12s; St. John's, £62 13s.; Temple, £61 18s.; and St. Augustine's, £59 6s. All the rest paid under £45 each, and the fashionable parish of St. Werburgh was assessed at only £28 18s. According to the commissioners' extraordinary calculations, the gross value of the citizens' personal effects (excluding the four omitted parishes) was under £3,000. The twentieth assessed on St. Nicholas' - more than double the charge on any other parish - was fixed at £40 18s., whilst only £4 2s. was demanded from St. John's, and £3 12s. from St. Philip's!

The deliberation with which the Council not infrequently dealt with matters of apparent urgency is again illustrated by some of its proceedings in 1672. Early in January the Chamber is stated to have been “informed” - though the facts must have been notorious - that a bark belonging to “foreigners” had been lying sunk for several years in the Froom branch of the harbour, to the great prejudice of navigation. A committee was thereupon appointed, but it had taken no action six months later, when the Court of


quarter sessions, observing that the great bank of mud gathered around the wreck threatened to choke up the river, ordered the ship to be ripped to pieces and the mud bank removed. Nothing, however, had been done in the following November, when the Council, after a discussion, appointed a fresh committee to inquire whether the hulk's position was really prejudicial, and, if so, to report as to what further steps should be taken! The minutes contain no further reference to the matter, and no expense was incurred by the Chamberlain.

The Court of quarter sessions, in January, displayed a well-balanced appreciation of official dignity and of judicial frugality. The justices ordered that the ward constables should provide themselves with “staffs of distinction, in accordance with the custom used in London”; in pursuance whereof, Mr. Tilly, chief constable of All Saints' ward, provided his subordinates with “decent and handsome staffs”, and applied to the Court for repayment of his outlay, 46s. 6d. Upon due consideration of which claim, the magistrates calmly brushed it aside, ordering the churchwardens of All Saints' to reimburse Tilly out of the church stock. Their worships then directed the constables, with their new staves, to perambulate the city every Sunday, and prevent loitering in the streets, unlawful recreations, and the making of uproars.

An alarming fire occurred in March, when the Bell tavern in Broad Street was burned to the ground. The accident led to the customary discussion at the next meeting of the Council upon the proved inadequacy of the provision against such calamities. As the fire-engine ordered in 1668 had never been purchased, a committee was appointed to consider how many small engines should be procured - with as little result as on the previous occasion.

The Privy Council, on March 29th, sent a letter to the Mayor and Aldermen stating that the King had been appealed to by the Quakers lying in many gaols for his merciful consideration, but that, before any step was taken, it was desirable to have further information. The justices were therefore requested to forward a list of the Quakers in Bristol gaol, with the causes of their commitment. The return has unfortunately perished. The persecution of Dissenters was suspended at this time, and from documents in the Record Office it appears that the Government was for a short period disposed towards a partial toleration. In April, in response to the petition of a few Bristolians, the


King granted a license to John Weeks, a well-known Presbyterian, to preach - not, however, in his former chapel, but at a private house on St. James's Back. A similar license was granted in the following month to Jeremy Holway, an Independent, who was allowed to preach in his own house in Corn Street. The lull was but the prelude to another and more vindictive explosion.

It was resolved by the Council in May that, as the salary of £5 a year, due to the Duke of Ormond as Lord High Steward, was several years in arrear, he should be presented with a butt of sherry and two hogsheads of French wine. Instead of forwarding the liquor from Bristol, however, an order was given to a wine merchant in London, who supplied the required quantity for £50, and the gift was duly made by Mr. Aldworth, Town Clerk. But the Duke was much displeased by the substitution of London sherry for what he knew by experience to be a superior article. His autograph letter of acknowledgment, undated, and a remarkable specimen of noble caligraphy, is preserved at the Council House. Modernising the spelling, it reads:- “Mr. Mayor and Aldermen, - It pains me that anything untoward should interrupt the good amity which for eleven years have existed between us, but touching my salary I did expect your excellent sherries, for which your fair city are so famed that none like can be had elsewhere, selected with such discriminative tact by the worshipful aldermen. I have no wish to reprimise, and trust that the attempt to impose on my judgment will not be repeated”. The abashed Council obeyed his Grace's request on subsequent occasions, and the minutes once record that the Duke “highly approved of the sherry”. His Grace resigned the Lord-Lieutenancy of Somerset and Bristol in September, 1672, and was succeeded by his relative, Henry, Marquis of Worcester, who had been appointed Lord-Lieutenant of Gloucestershire at the Restoration. From this time the City Lieutenancy, always previously annexed to that of Somerset, has been invariably held with that of Gloucestershire.

The annual muster of the trained bands seems to have become a mere formality after the Government had established a small standing army. Each parish kept one musket in stock, and paid a man one day's wages for appearing at the inspection in the Marsh. The contingent furnished by the Corporation is shown in the audit book:- “Paid at a general muster to six soldiers, and for powder, cleaning arms, and muster master, £1 0s. 10d. Wine,


sugar, tobacco, pipes, &c, £2 4s”. The festive accessories were provided tor the civic dignitaries, who honoured the review with their presence. Tobacco and pipes had by this time become indispensable adjuncts of a corporate feast. It may be added that although the Council paid for six men, the stock of arms is distinctly stated to consist of only three muskets and six swords.

An example of the brutal punishments of the age may be taken from the quarter sessions book in August:- “Evan Thomas, felon; ordered that he be stripped naked in the cart and severely whipped till the blood comes, next market day”. As all felonies of a serious character were punishable with death, the man's crime was probably a trivial one. In 1679, the justices ordered a woman, whose offence is not stated, to be stripped and lashed till the blood came, at the High Cross whipping-post - an established institution.

Abuses in the markets gave rise to a lengthy corporate ordinance in September. The previous Clerk of the Markets was stated to have neglected his duties to the prejudice of the public, and the person appointed to succeed him was ordered to attend every market with his gown upon his back, see to the weight of butter, prevent hucksters from forestalling and regrating, weigh the bread in the bakers' shops, carefully examine grain measures, and bring up all offenders. He was also to make a weekly report to the justices as to the price of corn, in order to enable the bench to fix the rate at which bread was to be sold by the bakers.

During the year, a purchase was made by the Sheriffs of two handsome silver trumpets for use at the reception of the judges of assize and on other occasions of state. The instruments cost £32. Having obtained them, it became necessary to furnish the musicians with gay liveries, for which £6 more were expended.

The Council, in March, 1673, revived an Ordinance passed 101 years previously, which had long become obsolete and forgotten, and was doomed a second time to the same fate. It was enacted that any freeman abiding out of the city or its liberties for a year and a day, except on the royal service or trading beyond seas, should be disfranchised until he paid a fine to be fixed by the Mayor and Aldermen. The Council next proceeded to consider a complaint made by the Chandlers' and Soapmakers' Company against a member named Cadwallader. This man, working as a journeyman, had taken an apprentice, but the youth continued to live in his father's house, for which illegality the Court of quarter


sessions had ordered the enrolment of the indenture to be erased. Cadwallader had thereupon taken the boy into his house, claiming to continue the apprenticeship, which was the grievance complained of. The Council ordered that the offender should be discommoned, that his shop windows should be shut down, and that the bellman should proclaim his disfranchisement before his shop and in all the streets.

The Marquis of Worcester, Lord-Lieutenant, having given notice of his intention to visit the city for the purpose of “settling” the militia, the Council, in August, resolved on entertaining him during his stay. This is the earliest reference to the house of Badminton to be found in the city archives. Sir Robert Cann and Sir John Knight were directed to ride to “Babington” to proffer the compliment, for which purpose, at a cost of 30s., those worthies engaged a coach, a vehicle hitherto only once mentioned in local annals. The Marquis arrived in September, when he was presented with a congratulatory address, in which a hope was expressed that the deputy-lieutenants for Bristol would be selected from the citizens, and not from the rural gentry. A French cook, imported to prepare the civic feast, received £121 for his catering and services, and £122 were disbursed by the Mayor for wine and sundry delicacies.

After a long period of plenty, the harvest of 1673 proved seriously deficient, and great distress prevailed during the winter. The magistrates, in January, 1674, ordered the poor-rate to be doubled, and the Council, having taken up £1,000 on loan, purchased a stock of corn for distribution amongst the poor at cost-price, a small loss on the transaction being borne by the Chamber.

The Corporation, in January, 1674, were again compelled to deal with the eternal difficulties attending the maintenance of an efficient nightly watch. The often-repeated attempt to force personal service on householders was now abandoned. A return had been procured of the persons liable to be charged for maintaining the force, from which it appeared that they numbered 2,000. The Council thereupon resolved that each of those persons should contribute, once every seven weeks, a night's pay of a watchman, namely 5d. during the summer and 7d. during the winter half-year. The yearly charge on the ratepayers was thus to be about £370. The force was to consist of two head constables, twenty-six watchmen, and two bellmen, the duty of the last-named officials being to perambulate the streets at midnight, according to custom. In 1675, the number of


watchmen was increased to thirty, one head constable being dispensed with, and the pay was raised one penny per night. Ratepayers willing to watch in person were exempted from the tax.

A book of 106 pages, entitled “Bristol Drollery: Poems and Songs, by Mr. O.”, was printed in London this year “for Charles Allen, Bookseller in Bristol”. Some prefatory verses “To the Young Gallants” are signed “N.C. Jany., 167¾”. The book contains about fifty amatory songs and other trifles, one of which is entitled “A mock Poem on the waters of the Hot Well”, but all the rhymes are utterly devoid of merit. A copy of this very rare volume is in the British Museum.

There are many indications in the corporate records that the old walls of the original borough had long ceased to be regarded as of any practical utility, and that many breaches had been made in them where they stood in the way of improvements. The strong line of ramparts extending from Redcliff to Temple Grates was still, however, considered a necessary bulwark. The grand jury, in May, made a presentment that several doorways had been illicitly cut there for the convenience of persons going to their fields and gardens in the suburbs, whereupon the Court indignantly denounced such acts as not only contemptuous but dangerous, inasmuch as rogues might thereby get in and out at night, when the gates were shut, and ordered the city mason to “dam” them up forthwith. An exception was nevertheless made in favour of a breach leading out of Thomas Street, and it may be suspected that the judicial decree had little permanent effect.

Owing to the financial embarrassment of the Corporation, the proper maintenance of civic buildings seems to have been much neglected. The Council were informed in May that the foundations of Bridewell, Newgate, Froom Grate, the tower by Bridewell holding the magazine of gunpowder(!), the arches of Bristol Bridge, and several other public places were out of repair and likely to fall, whereupon the Court of Aldermen were instructed to superintend the needful restorations. The house of the porter of Newgate had been destroyed during the war, and was still in ruins. To stave off the cost of rebuilding, the Council soon after voted the man 40s. a year, to enable him to rent a dwelling.

We are informed by a local annalist that on September 11th the Countess of Castlemaine, one of the King's


disreputable females, accompanied by Sir John Churchill, a legal hanger-on of the Duke of York, and Sir Thomas Bridges, the persecutor of Dissenters, paid a visit to the city, and after a pompous parade through the streets was entertained at the Three Tuns tavern, Corn Street, at Churchill's expense. The two knights brought their wives with them to do further honour to their discreditable guest; but the Mayor and Corporation significantly kept aloof.

The shameless indifference shown by the Government towards the marauding of Moorish pirates is illustrated by a petition presented to the Court of quarter sessions in October by a cooper named John Knight. The applicant stated that upwards of six years previously his brother Henry, sailing in a Bristol ship, was taken prisoner by Turks, and carried captive into Sallee, where he still remained a slave. He could now, it was believed, be ransomed for £130, and the petitioner, being unable to raise the money, prayed the Court to devise some expedient for the unhappy man's redemption. The justices made an urgent request to the citizens for contributions, and ordered the churchwardens to collect subscriptions. The result is unknown.

The State Papers for November contain the first document bearing on a new struggle between London monopolists and Bristol merchants, a conflict destined to continue almost uninterruptedly for some eighty years. On November 25th, a royal proclamation was issued, reciting the King's letters patent of 1673, granted to the African Company, and expressing His Majesty's displeasure on learning that divers private persons had nevertheless presumed to send out ships to trade with Africa, to the prejudice of the Company. The King now positively prohibited his subjects from trafficking in negroes or goods between the African coast and the American plantations, on pain of forfeiture of “such commodities”. No evidence exists that local merchants made any protest against this unconstitutional act of the Crown, which was a flagrant violation of the rights of the Merchant Venturers. What is certain is that the proclamation was quietly ignored, and that the monopolists were unable to prevent a steady development of African trade in Bristol.

The Council amused themselves in December by harassing a few non-freemen, probably Quakers. “Whereas”, runs the minute, “Peter Young, soap boiler, on the Bridge, and James Fry and Samuel Hollister, grocers, in Wine Street, having of late opened shops and sold goods though not


freemen, and not having taken the oath of allegiance, have had their shops shut down; yet nevertheless have contemptuously opened them again. Of which the House being informed, the parties were sent for, and their answers being in no way satisfactory, ordered that their shops be again shut down and kept down”. The Chamberlain subsequently paid the large sum of £8 11s. 6d. “for watching four Quakers' shops when their windows was shut down and nailed down”. The order being so persistently carried out, the offenders were compelled to seek admission as burgesses. In September, 1675, the Chamber adopted a lengthy ordinance setting forth that by ancient laws no man except a freeman could abide in the town more than forty days for selling wares, or keep shop, or dwell in the town, or buy goods of any but a burgess; notwithstanding which divers persons had of late contemptuously opened shops and openly used trades and handicrafts to the discouragement of freemen. For reformation whereof it was ordered that every such offender should be fined 20s. a day. Although individuals suffered much from time to time by legislation of this kind, it is clear that the Corporation were unable to prevent the constant intrusion of “foreigners”.

About the close of the year, the toleration enjoyed for a while by the nonconformist bodies came to an end, and was followed by a persecution compared with which even Sir John Knight's former oppressions were merciful. At Michaelmas the civic chair was taken by Ralph Olliffe, the landlord of the Three Tuns tavern, and a copious consumer of his own liquors, but redeeming his vices in many eyes by an uncompromising hatred of Dissenters. Two men of kindred opinions were elected Sheriffs. Hearing, perhaps, of the fitness of the new Mayor to co-operate in an intended crusade, Bishop Carleton made his appearance a few weeks later, and frankly announced his intention to extirpate every conventicle in the city. Acting, it was believed, at his instigation, the Sheriffs, at the Epiphany quarter sessions, packed the grand jury with violent Cnurchmen, and this body delivered a lengthy presentment - probably prepared in advance - denouncing dissenting preachers as impostors and firebrands, and their adherents as seditious fanatics, lauding the energy of the Bishop in prosecuting those pests, and recommending the Aldermen to root them out by a vigorous execution of the Conventicle Acts. The Bishop, who had taken a seat on the bench to hear the reading of a document that was suspected by many to be


his own composition, expressed his cordial approval of its contents, and the whole scene appears to have been arranged in order to give ulterior proceedings the formal sanction of a court of justice. There were then eight sectarian congregations in the city: two of Quakers, with no regular minister; three of Baptists, with pastors named Hardcastle, Gifford, and Kitchen; two of Independents, led by Messrs. Thompson and Troughton; and one of Presbyterians, whose minister was John Weeks, already mentioned, whose popularity is proved by a contemporary statement that his flock numbered about 1,500. Bishop Carleton found an unscrupulous instrument in an attorney named Hellier, a churchwarden of St. James's, in which parish were four of the meeting-houses. This man, at the prelate's desire, laid informations under the Conventicle Acts, which the Mayor was proceeding to act upon, when, to the mortification of the prosecutors, it was shown that the King had granted licenses to hold services in three of the chapels. The Bishop, however, promptly repaired to Court for the purpose of urging the King to revoke the licenses, and Charles, with his usual callousness, having complied with the request, Carleton returned in triumph in the following February, and ordered Hellier to resume operations. The Mayor and some of the Aldermen lending zealous assistance, and the Bishop again seating himself amongst the justices and clamouring for severity, warrants were issued against four of the ministers. On February 10th, Carleton, four parsons, two Aldermen and some military officers, with a noisy rabble, surrounded Castle Green Chapel whilst service was proceeding, arrested the minister, John Thompson, a Master of Arts of Oxford, and carried him before the Mayor. The Bishop, acting as prosecutor, at once burst into virulent language, declaring that the seditious villain, the rebel dog, ought to stretch a halter, and demanded his immediate commitment to gaol for six months for having been found within the city after a previous conviction. His demand was complied with, and three other pastors, found guilty of the same offence, received similar sentences within a few days. Newgate was rarely free from epidemics, arising from the foulness of the cells, and Thompson was speedily prostrated by fever. A physician, called in to attend him, informed the justices that his life would be endangered if he were not imprisoned in a healthier place. The Sheriffs were asked to allow his removal to a decent chamber, security in £600 being offered that he should remain in


custody, but the officials refused to assent without the approval of the Bishop, and the latter, on hearing of the proposal, threatened them with his vengeance if they made the concession. The victim rapidly sank under his malady, and died on March 4th. The feeling of the citizens was significantly expressed at his interment, the most remarkable ever known, about 6,000 persons attending St. Philip's churchyard to manifest their regret and horror. On the evening of the funeral, a paper was thrown into the Mayor's house, threatening that if the persecution continued, many eminent men and numbers of apprentices and workmen would venture their lives for freedom, and Thomas Cale (appointed postmaster in 1679), in informing Secretary Williamson of the fact, expressed his belief that two-thirds of the inhabitants were “that way inclined”. The death of Thompson, however, made no impression on the persecutors, who published a pamphlet, sanctioned by, and possibly written by, the Bishop, which, in defiance of the gaoler's affidavit that the victim perished of malignant ever, asserted that death was occasioned by “a surfeit”. A few days after Thompson's demise, Hefner broke up some meetings for prayer and sent several of the persons found there to Newgate, where they were thrown by the keeper into the most loathsome den in the place, with a damp earthen floor and destitute of seats. But the persecution only strengthened the firmness and religious ardour of the sectaries. Worship was maintained in all the meeting-houses, and various devices were invented to conceal the preachers so as to prevent the Bishop's mercenaries from laying informations. In two chapels trap-doors were made in the floor, through which the ministers descended as soon as a signal was given of the approach of the Mayor or Hellier's gang, the entrance to the meeting being also purposely blocked with women. In other places, the preacher, with others, was concealed behind a curtain, so that informers in the body of the chapel were unable to identify the speaker. In all cases, when the Mayor or a justice forced an entrance, the congregation were found singing, which was not an indictable offence; and the more his worship threatened the louder resounded the psalm. When the magistrate went off in a rage, the service was resumed, and though he sometimes returned three times over in the hope of securing a conviction, he was generally routed by the persistency of the chorus. The Quakers, again, baffled the officers by sitting in silence at their


meetings for hours together, and thus defeating the provisions of the statute. Grossly brutal practices, however, were habitually resorted to by Hellier, Alderman Streamer, the Bishop's hirelings, and others, against the unresisting congregations, batches of whom, varying from half a dozen to fifty in number, were often hauled before the Mayor and committed to gaol on false charges of rioting. This persecution continued for many weeks, and the fact that each outrage, generally committed on Sunday, was preceded by a carouse in the bibulous Mayor's tavern was not calculated to excite public approval. The magistrates, it is recorded, became at length “much weary” of the endless work demanded from them by the Bishop, and upon his lordship going up to Parliament in a huff at their inaction, the harryings temporarily ceased. But the campaign was soon resumed by the Mayor and Hellier, who had a love for the sport, and great roughness was repeatedly used to disperse the congregations. On one occasion Robert Colston, soap-boiler (a brother of Edward), condescended to act as a spy, and informed against a quiet gathering, to the grieved surprise of those who had trusted him. Hellier was clearly proved to have committed perjury in one of his informations, but Chief Justice North ordered his discharge at the autumn assizes. By that time the term of imprisonment of the three surviving ministers had expired. On being released they recommenced preaching, and some of them were soon consigned to their former loathsome quarters. It is a melancholy fact that the aged Bishop accompanied the Mayor to one of the meeting-houses with the object of arresting one of the culprits. Hellier, who was on the alert every Sunday, on one occasion flung several chairs into the chapel fire, and nearly succeeded in burning down the building. As a final achievement, Olliffe, on the last Sunday in his Mayoralty, having secured the assistance of Sir John Knight, Sir Robert Yeamans, and Streamer, proposed a general attack on the congregations, but the results were disappointing; and a few days later the accession of Sir Robert Cann to the chair, and the entrance into office of two moderate-minded Sheriffs, promised a return to tranquillity. Hellier, though discountenanced by the new Mayor, who actually invited many leading Dissenters to dinner, nevertheless continued to disturb meetings, often using violence to effect his purpose, whilst Aldermen Streamer, Lawford, Yeamans, and Olliffe supported him by sending to Newgate those he informed against, or ordering


distraints upon their goods. The persecution raged with little interruption for fifteen months without having any deterring effect on the dissenting bodies. Early in 1676 Mr. Hardcastle, of Broadmead Chapel, was liberated after a second imprisonment of six months, and recommenced preaching on the day of his release.

Intelligence reached the city in December that the ship Bristol Merchant, with a crew of thirty men, nearly all of whom had wives living here, some with five and six children, had been captured by a Moorish pirate, which had carried all the men into slavery. Urgent appeals were made to the Government by Sir John Knight and others on behalf of the seamen's families, and some of the women were sent up to London to seek relief at Court, but the effort seems to have been fruitless. A local subscription was afterwards started for the redemption of the captives.

At the beginning of Sir Robert Cann's second mayoralty, the Council gave orders that a new set of robes should be provided for him, and also a new cap of maintenance for the Swordbearer. The articles, including two pairs of silver clasps for the robes, cost £30 9s. 8d. The purchase was not made to gratify the worthy baronet's known love of ostentation, but in consequence of the passing of an Act intended to put a new curb upon corporations, the chief magistrates being required to proceed to Westminster to be sworn in. The Council were naturally desirous that the appearance of the Mayor and his attendants should be creditable to the city. The journey entailed a further outlay of £30, and this item became an annual one for some years.

The office of Town Clerk became vacant in March, 1676, by the death of Robert Aldworth, and from letters amongst the State Papers it appears that a number of candidates for the post were speedily in the field. The Marquis of Worcester, who kept a vigilant eye upon the Corporation, is stated to have warned the Mayor that the place must be confided to a stanch King and Church man; whilst Ellsworth addressed a characteristic note to Secretary Williamson, alleging that the city was as factious as it was populous, that the authorities were grossly ignorant, and not thoroughly purged of the old leaven, and that the laws against sedition were laid asleep. He concluded by advising that the King should send down a proper command to the Council. The vacancy was filled in the following month by the election of John Romsey, who is not to be confounded with a Colonel John Romsey, or Rumsey, who


was at the same time local Collector of Customs, and was subsequently concerned in the Eye House Plot. Mr. Aldworth, in his later years, dwelt in a large mansion in the Marsh, on or near the spot where the Assembly Rooms were built in the following century. The house, erected early in the century by Humphrey Hooke, was the most pleasantly situated in the city, and was frequently made available for the reception of the judges and Recorder. Chief Justice North lodged there shortly before Aldworth's death, and will be found there again during the Popish Plot mania, being then the guest of Romsey, the new tenant, who also entertained Chief Justice Jeffreys during the Bloody Assizes. John Evans and his copyists have alleged that this historic mansion was situated in King Street, on no other evidence than the fact that a small and mean house there (removed a few years ago) had the initials J.R. inscribed over the door. The true site is minutely described in the Bargain Books of the Corporation.

The Society of Merchants purchased, in June, of one Isaac Morgan, three-fourths of the manor of Clifton, for some generations the property of the wealthy local family of Broke, but eventually divided amongst co-heiresses through failure of heirs male. The remaining fourth part is supposed to have been acquired in fragments. The Society believed they had become possessed of manorial rights over the entire parish. But it appears from a document in the Reference Library (from which the above facts are taken) that in 1683 they were disagreeably 'surprised by the discovery that certain persons were claiming portions of the “waste” by virtue of manorial rights derived from one of the ministers of Henry VIII. - Sir Ralph Sadleir. That famous grabber of church lands had, in fact, obtained a grant, soon after the dissolution of the monasteries, of a manor in Clifton previously belonging to the Dean and Canons of Westbury, and the estate had devolved by a later purchase on Gabriel Deane, of Bristol, merchant, and Abel Kelly. Mr. Knapp, in his “Handbook of Clifton”, stated that the Society purchased the ecclesiastical manor from those owners, by which litigation was avoided.

The Duke of Ormond paid another visit to the city in 1676, and was sumptuously entertained in St. George's Chapel, in the Guildhall. The French cook already mentioned was again in request, an abundant supply of sweetmeats was provided, and Alderman Olliffe furnished a copious store of the Bristol sherry so much esteemed by the noble guest.


The Chamberlain, in August, records the disbursement of £145, “the charge of building a new bridge going out of the Castle into Castle Mead, alias the Queen's Orchard”. This is doubtless the bridge which still spans the ancient moat in the rear of Castle Street. The Mead was at that time really a meadow, but was being prepared for building operations. This was a work which could not be satisfactorily accomplished without refreshments; so “we” - that is, the Chamberlain and his staff - repaired to the Three Tuns tavern after a morning's measurement, “for two quarts of sack and a bisket”, for which Falstaffian regale he paid 3s. 5d.

The Mayor's annual fishing recreation in the Froom, which had been long discontinued, was revived in September, though on a humble scale as compared with former times. The outlay for the day amounted to only 15s. 6d.; but the wine bill may have been included in Olliffe's yearly account. In September, 1678, the Chamberlain paid £2 10s. for “a fishing net, 20 fathom of rope, and a barrel to put him in”.

The Council, in September, had its dignity affronted in an unprecedented manner. At a previous meeting the Mayor, exercising an ancient privilege, nominated one Robert Bagnell for admittance to the freedom without the payment of a fine, and a confirmatory order was passed as a matter of course. But his worship now announced that this graceless individual, instead of feeling thankful for the honour conferred upon him, had in saucy and impertinent language contemned and despised the same. The House, much incensed, ordered the previous resolution to be expunged from the minute-book, and declared Bagnell to be for ever incapable of holding the freedom. A balm to the Chamber's wound was applied a few days later. It was intimated that Sir John Churchill, now become attorney-general to the Duke of York, was desirous of being useful to the city, and was anxious for an offer of the freedom. The disreputable incident in connection with Lady Castlemaine could not have been forgotten, but the wily lawyer had pushed his way at Court by this and other baseness, and the Council, “considering in what stead the having so worthy a member might be to the city”, ordered the freedom to be presented to him.

The rector and churchwardens of St. Stephen's parish petitioned the Chamber in October, representing that the little burial-ground attached to the church was so full of


dead bodies that there was no place left for fresh interments, and that the place had become a great annoyance and grievance to the neighbourhood. The House ordered that a fitting piece of ground in the Marsh should be granted to the parish in fee-farm, a rent of 3s. 4d. being reserved. In the following century the new cemetery also became a pestiferous nuisance from the same cause, and the Corporation had to repurchase the ground at the price demanded by the vestry - £1,000.

The Council were requested in October to deal with a refractory member of the Feltmakers' Company. It was stated that the man had bought several parcels of felts, but had refused to allow the Company's officers to inspect them, and had resold the goods before they had been approved as marketable, being also contumacious and discourteous to the magistrates when they admonished him. The House gave the offender six months to consider the enormity of his conduct; but he reappeared in April as stiff-necked as before. It was therefore ordered that he be disfranchised and thenceforth treated as a foreigner.

The Corporation in November met with a serious discomfiture in the Court of Exchequer, a judgment being given against them, after a long and costly litigation, in a suit raised by Sir William Waller, the lessee under the Crown of the right of “prisage” of wines. It will be remembered that in the disputes respecting royal “ purveyance” in the early years of the century, the citizens resisted those burdens on the ground that the Crown claimed a right - unknown in other ports - to take one tun of wine out of every cargo of from ten to twenty tuns, and two tuns out of every larger cargo, brought into Bristol; but no further information respecting this “prisage” was then obtainable. From the voluminous documents in the Record Office concerning the above suit, however, it is possible to give further details. It appears from depositions that the Waller family had enjoyed a lease of the prisage for several generations, the rent paid to the King by Sir William being £600 a year. Early in the reign of James I., one of his ancestors subleased the right for thirty-eight years to several prominent members of the Corporation, reserving a rent of £110, together with a tax of £6 for every tun of prisage. At the expiration of this sub-lease, during the Civil War, the right reverted to the Wallers, who obtained a fresh grant from Charles II. at the Restoration, and their claim to the profits does not appear to have been ever resisted. In the middle


ages the Crown right, for a brief space in every year, lapsed to the monks of St. James's Priory, who claimed to have the right of prisage on wines coming into port during the Whitsun week by virtue of a charter of William, Earl of Gloucester. This pretension was held to be valid at the suppression of the monastery, for the week's prisage was granted by Henry VIII. to Brayne, with the rest of the Priory estates. Brayne's two representatives, in 1579, divided the property between them, and it was arranged that the prisage should be taken by them in alternate years, “for ever”. In 1627, the heir of one of these men, Sir Charles Gerard, sold this and other rights to the Corporation (see p.97), but there is no evidence in the civic archives of any receipt from prisage for nearly half a century. But in May, 1673, when four ships reached the Avon during the Whitsun week, two belonging to Sir Robert Cann and one to William Colston, with an aggregate cargo of 240 tuns of wine, Waller's agent selected ten butts of Spanish liquor, worth £16 per butt, and two tuns of French, valued at £38 each, and put the “King's mark” upon them, when they were violently seized by one Jones, acting upon the orders of the Mayor, and removed to corporate cellars, the Customs duty, £72 4s., being paid by the Chamberlain. Sir William Waller thereupon commenced an action against both the Corporation and the importers, to which the former pleaded the privilege granted to the Priory. Two Commissions were issued by the Court to take local evidence as to the facts, and the above information is drawn from the depositions. It may be of importance to add that Waller's chief witness alleged that, although the ships reached the port in the Whitsun week, none of the wines were entered at the Custom House until the following Monday. The judgment delivered in the Court of Exchequer is appended to the last depositions. The judges determined that “no prisage was due within the time that the city claimed to have the same”, and that “the prisage of the wines imported as aforesaid are not within the claim of the defendants”. Cann, Colston, and the other importers were therefore ordered to pay Waller his prisage, deducting the duty. The Corporation, of course, bore this burden, £160, and also paid the plaintiff £60 for costs, to say nothing of their own, about three times greater. With the exception of a sum of £4 18s. 6d., received in April, 1680, “for duties of goods that came in last Whitsun week”, and of two butts of sherry, taken at Whitsuntide, 1697, the city authorities


do not appear to have afterwards reaped any profit from their prisage rights.

For some years previous to this date, there had been occasional manifestations on the part of the Cathedral authorities of a desire to claim immunity from civic jurisdiction. In 1666, to give an example, Nicholas Pownell, Registrar of the Consistory Court, who had built himself a house in Lower College Green, together with three of his neighbours, asserting the place to be extra parochial, refused to pay the rate of twopence weekly then assessed on all respectable householders for the relief of the poor; but the Corporation ordered the rate to be recovered by distraint, and the resistance was for the time abandoned. The Dean and Chapter nevertheless continued to sigh for the independence enjoyed by the capitular bodies in some ancient cities, and they probably stirred up Bishop Carleton to demand a similar privilege for their own cathedral precincts. The bellicose prelate at all events sought to shake off corporate control in a characteristic fashion. The Council learnt in April, 1677, that his lordship was seeking to achieve his aim by foisting a clause for that purpose into a Bill then before Parliament for endowing poor vicarages. This manoeuvre proving unsuccessful, the campaign was continued in another form by the Chapter. In May, the Mayor and Aldermen, appealing to the Recorder for his assistance, forwarded a demand made by the Dean and prebendaries, “the purport whereof”, say the writers, “is to exempt themselves, not only from the jurisdiction of the city, but from all temporal jurisdiction whatever”. Sir Robert Atkyns's reply has been lost, but in June he was apprised that the Dean and Chapter “persevere in the contest with the city with unseemly rigour and severity, as by arresting the Mayor” - an incident on which we have no further information, except that one of the prebendaries, in a letter to the Primate, alleged that the outrage was ordered by the Bishop. The Recorder appears to have advised the Corporation to apply for relief to the Lord Chancellor, for the next effort of the Court of Aldermen was an appeal to Lord Finch, setting forth the aggressive tactics of their opponents, who, with unbecoming heat and ardour, were claiming immunities in derogation of undoubted civic rights; “and not only so, but they have endeavoured to shorten the jurisdiction and extent of the city, by depriving us of almost a whole parish, claimed by them as a distinct and separate jurisdiction”. These claims, continued the


applicants, had been prosecuted at the instigation of the Bishop; and not contented with this aggression, these confederates were labouring to obtain a Commission of charitable uses, to be worked by their own creatures, openly declaring that they were aiming at an inquisition “into the arcana of the city”. Flattered, perhaps, by the eulogium of his wisdom and ability, with which the writers concluded, the Chancellor appears to have directed Mr. Justice Jones, who came down for the autumn assizes, to inquire into the case, for the judge certainly requested Sir John Churchill to endeavour to accommodate the controversy between the Corporation on the one hand and the Bishop and Chapter on the other. The Council, in September, assented to Churchill's intervention, but ordered their determination “to be kept secret”, and prohibited any member from “ presuming to discourse of it under severe penalties”. It is clear from the total disappearance of the subject in later minutes that the Dean and Chapter eventually withdrew their pretensions as unsustainable. The Commission also proved a failure, and no further record remains of it in the civic books except a disbursement of £15 for expenses entailed on the Corporation.

A vague tradition existed in the city early in the present century that two brothers of Edward Colston were murdered in Spain during their residence in that country as agents of their father, William. The true facts respecting the matter have been unexpectedly discovered in the minutes of the Privy Council. On June 22nd, 1677, their lordships considered a petition from William Colston, Esq., of Bristol, setting forth that his son William was barbarously murdered at Lisbon, on December 16th, 1675, by a stab with a dagger knife, given by one Hutchinson, an Englishman, without provocation; that the petitioner, upon hearing that Hutchinson was coming to England, caused him to be apprehended by warrant and committed to Newgate; but that it was stated he could not be tried here without a special commission; and therefore prayed that such a commission might be granted by the King. The Council ordered that the Keeper of Newgate (presumably the gaol in London) should bring the prisoner, under a strong guard, before the King in Council, five days later, when Colston was to take care to have his witnesses present. The parties accordingly appeared on the 27th, when clear evidence was given that Hutchinson had perpetrated a barbarous murder; but it was also shown that he had been tried in Portugal, and


acquitted. The Council then ordered the Attorney-General to confer with the judges as to what should be done; but the law officer reported on July 20th that owing to the approaching assizes the judges had been unable to consider the matter. The Council thereupon directed that the Lord Chief Justice should take bail for the appearance of Hutchinson in the following Michaelmas term. As there is no further reference to the subject, it may be inferred that the miscreant escaped his deserts.

The Corporation had hitherto limited the operations of the scavenger to the central districts under their control, and left the outlying parishes to make provision for themselves. The Court of quarter sessions now suggesting that some assistance should be rendered to the neglected localities, the Council voted the munificent sum of £3 each to the authorities of St. Augustine's and St. James's “towards keeping the parishes clean” for the ensuing year. St. Michael's parish was considered to be equitably treated by a dole of 20s.

Queen Catherine being on a visit to Bath, the Corporation felt it obligatory to offer her the hospitality of the city, and, on the invitation being graciously accepted, due preparations were ordered for Her Majesty's reception on July 11th. The city treasury being in its chronic condition of emptiness, the first step was to borrow money, and Sir William Cann generously offered the loan of £300 for a month, free of interest. It was then resolved that the royal guest should be conducted by way of Castle Green, that all the streets should be thickly sanded from Castle Gate to Small Street, and that the members of the Council should parade in black furred robes. As the route of the procession involved the passing of Newgate, the keeper received instructions to prevent the prisoners - who clamorously begged for alms daily from inside the grated portal - from making a display of their wretchedness. The story of the Queen's arrival at Lawford's Gate, including the solemn oration of the Town Clerk, the bareheaded march of the Mayor before the royal coach, and the firing of salutes, is almost a stereotyped reproduction of the account of the King and Queen's arrival fourteen years earlier. The feast offered to Her Majesty was prepared in the mansion of the Creswick family in Small Street - one of the finest in the city, though probably uninhabited after the death of Sir Henry. The French cook always engaged on state occasions appears to have spared no expense in


producing a regal entertainment, for the note of charges showed a total of £446. After dinner the Queen proceeded to the Hot Well in her coach, attended by the gallant Earl of Ossory and a numerous Court, inspected the magnificent ravine, still almost unmutilated by quarrymen, and took a draught from the spring that was then fast becoming famous. Then, after a short repose in Small Street, Her Majesty started on her return journey, and reached Bath late in the evening. In the following year, the Chamberlain bought six yards of damask at 9s. a yard, to make a tablecloth for Alderman Crabb, the cloth that he had lent for the feast having been stained and spoiled; but the discarded article was retained at the Council House, being deemed good enough “for the city's use”.

The amenities of Newgate are briefly sketched in a petition presented to the Council in July by the late Keeper of the gaol. The applicant set forth that for the better health of the prison, which was close, and had no rules (liberties) like some other gaols, and was made noisome by the unwholesome stenches from the whitawers' (curriers') pits lying under the walls, he had built a small house, and made a walk, with benches, whence the prisoners could view the country, much to their health. Prayer was made for the repayment of the outlay, but the impecunious Council did not respond to the call.

About this time the Corporation seem to have been advised by the Town Clerk or some other legal authority that they were entitled to receive the rents for booths and other standings erected in St. James's churchyard during the annual summer fair - an income which, as stated in page 287, had been previously enjoyed by the parish. The first mention of the subject occurs in the Council minutes of September 25th, when it was ordered that the parishioners should produce their title to the profits, and that unless they paid over the money collected at the last fair, a suit should be raised for its recovery. As no reference to the dispute is to be found in any local history, it may be well to give a brief summary of the facts in a connected form. On receiving the above intimation, the churchwardens refused to distribute the money in their hands in the customary way, whereupon, in January, 1678, a petition from “sundry poor people” of the parish was presented to Bishop Carleton and others, the Commissioners for charitable uses under the commission already referred to, alleging that the profits of the fair in the churchyard, from time


immemorial, had been gathered by the churchwardens for the benefit of the poor, but that the existing officers withheld the money, pretending that the Corporation were entitled to it; wherefore the petitioners prayed that the wardens should be compelled to distribute it in the usual manner. The sitting Commissioners (Sir Francis Fane, Edward Gorges and others) ordered the summoning of a jury of twenty-four inhabitants, not being St. James's men or free burgesses; and this body, on January 19th, found that the churchwardens, for time out of mind, had let the standings in the churchyard and received the rents, as was proved by leases produced, dating from the 8th Henry IV. to the 30th Elizabeth; and that the money, about £30 yearly, had been distributed amongst the poor. Nothing further appears to have been done by the Commissioners, who were ignored by the Corporation; but a suit in Chancery was raised soon afterwards by the Mayor and Commonalty, against Thomas Home (the incumbent) and the parishioners of St, James's. After pleadings in London, the Court ordered an inquiry into the facts upon the spot, and the Commissioners appointed for that purpose, Robert Henley and Francis Yeamans, sat at the White Lion inn on September 24th, 1G80, to take evidence. The depositions made on behalf of the plaintiffs have not been preserved, but it is clear that the Corporation claimed to possess the freehold of the churchyard. On the other hand, the witnesses for the parish showed that the wardens were accustomed to receive 2s. yearly from the holders of every house having a door opening on the cemetery, and that seizures for this rent had been sometimes made. The minister and clerk had each a house rent free, opening upon the churchyard, the yearly value of which was estimated at £4 and £2 respectively. The herbage of the ground once brought in a rent to the parish of 40s., but had become valueless by reason of the numerous footpaths. The parish clerk deposed that the Corporation had never claimed the profits of the fair until within the last few years. The wardens, thirty years previous, threw down all the trees in the lower walk, and sold the timber to pay for the re-casting of the church bells; but the witness admitted that Sir Robert Yeamans, when Mayor, forbade a baker to shroud the trees, though the man had the consent of the wardens. After further proceedings, in the course of which “the vast expense of the suit” is noticed in the Council minutes, the Lord Chancellor ordered, in July,


1681, that a trial of the cause at common law should take place at the ensuing assizes. But on February 11th, 1682, his lordship was informed by the counsel for the parish that the plaintiffs had neglected to bring the case to trial, and that the wardens had quietly collected the profits of the last fair, and had handed them to Sir Robert Cann ( doubtless appointed receiver by the Court). It was therefore asked that Sir Robert should be ordered to refund the money - about £36 - so that it might be distributed amongst the poor. This the Chancellor thought reasonable, and ordered it to be done unless the plaintiffs showed cause to the contrary. The Corporation appealed, but the order for repayment was confirmed, and the Court again directed the case to be tried at the local assizes. But after five years' litigation, the Council abandoned their claim, and on October 19th, 1682, rescinded the authority given to Sir John Knight to prosecute the suit in London.

The early Bristol Volunteers (see p.93) were revived and reorganized in 1677. On September 25th the Council gave orders that such gentlemen as might think fit to join an Association of an Artillery Yard, for their better instruction in military discipline, might have the use of the Bowling Green in the Marsh, on making an agreement with the tenant. In the following February, the Marquis of Worcester, Lord-Lieutenant, expressed his approval of the movement, when a committee of the Council was appointed, apparently at his suggestion, to make terms with the tenant of the Bowling Green, or to obtain some other piece of ground, for conversion into an Artillery Yard. Subsequently, the King's approbation was signified to the Marquis, who nominated his son, Lord Herbert, to be captain and leader of the Company, which had also a lieutenant and ensign. From the tenor of the rules drawn up for the regulation of the corps, it is evident that the members, who numbered more than a hundred, were all of ultra-royalist principles. The dress of the pikemen and musketeers was a grey cloth coat, scarlet breeches and stockings, and a white hat.

An official return to the Government of the amount of Customs duties received at the various ports for the twelve months ending Michaelmas, 1677, is amongst the State Papers of the year. The chief receipts were:- at London, £697,704; Bristol, £60,946; Hull, £21,480; Exeter, £17,921. In other ports the collections were insignificant, Liverpool producing £3,607.


Robert Lippyat, “distiller and metheglin maker”, was admitted a freeman by the Council in October, on payment of £20. Metheglin - a beer made from honey - was then a popular beverage, especially favoured by Welshmen. At the same meeting, the Rev. Nicholas Penwarne, rector of St. Stephen's, petitioned for admittance as a burgess, pleading that he had many children, with a probability of having many more, to whom the freedom might be beneficial. His request having been acceded to, applications to the same effect were forthwith made by the vicar of St. Augustine's and the incumbent of St. Werburgh's and St. John's, both of whom were granted a similar favour gratis. A few months later, a labourer, who must have had an influential patron in the Chamber, was also admitted free, “to make him capable of an almshouse”.

Sir Humphrey Hooke, M.P., died in October, causing a vacancy in the representation of the city. Never losing an opportunity of venting his malignity, Sir R. Ellsworth wrote at once to Secretary Williamson, stating that Sir Robert Cann would endeavour to get elected, though he had instigated his father to disloyalty in 1649, and had made grossly disloyal speeches himself, which the writer professed to quote, though he acknowledged he had gathered them from hearsay. Cann, he adds, will be elected by the Dissenters, who are two-thirds of the city, unless he is interdicted by the King's order. A new writ was issued in the following January, when Sir Robert was elected without opposition. Although Hooke had received great wealth from his grandfather, he died in embarrassed circumstances, and in 1680 his trustees disposed of his fine estate at Kingsweston to Sir Robert Southwell.

An innovation occurred at the beginning of winter. To this time, although all the little candles illuminating the streets were expected to burn out by nine o'clock in the evening, the watchmen who came on duty at that hour had patrolled throughout dark nights without having the means to distinguish an honest man from a rogue. In November, however, the Chamberlain expended £1 11s. 11d. in providing “candles for the watch”. The outlay afterwards amounted to about £14 yearly. No provision of lanterns was made by the Chamber, but the outlay for that purpose was doubtless paid out of the watch rate.

Two somewhat puzzling items occur in the civic accounts of the year. On the debit side is the following:- “Paid the Lord Chief Justice's Receiver, two years' exhibition money


to the poor prisoners in the King's Bench and Marshalsea [two well-known London gaols], £4 4s.” No such item appears in previous audit books, and no explanation of the liability is forthcoming. The charge must have been forthwith assessed upon householders, for the following entry is found on the credit side of the accounts:- “Collected from the churchwardens for one (sic) year's arrears due for relief of the prisoners in the King's Bench and Marshalsea, £9 15s.” In the audit book for 1679; a payment of £4 4s. is again entered, but on this occasion the Chamberlain collected £19 10s. from the parishes, leaving a handsome profit on the transaction. The disbursement continued for several years, and then disappears as mysteriously as it arose.

The Recorder, Sir Robert Atkyns, having refused for three years to accept the customary fees of his office, the Corporation presented him in January, 1678, with some handsome plate, costing £59 18s. 6d. Sir Robert had been since 1672 one of the judges of the Court of Common Pleas, and was often consulted by the Government on business connected with Bristol. In a letter from Sir John Knight to the Mayor, in the following June, it appears that Bishop Carleton had been “soliciting for another Commission of charitable uses, the better still to affront the magistrates and trample upon them”, but that the Lord Chancellor had refused until he could consult “our Recorder”, whose disapproval could be foreseen. The letter also refers to the Bishop's high-handed conduct in inducting one Home into the incumbency of St. James's, “without our consent”, although “our lay fee, and no parish church”.

Either from disgust at Bishop Carleton's conduct, or discontent at the policy of the Government, a notable change took place about this time in Sir John Knight's political sentiments. In February, 1678, in consequence of the King's pretended desire for war with France, the House of Commons voted large supplies, which were coolly appropriated to other purposes, and soon afterwards Charles made a secret treaty of peace with Louis XIV., who granted him a pension of £300,000. The King then asked for further supplies for disbanding his forces, and for an addition to his revenue that would have made him independent of Parliament. Upon the announcement of these demands, Knight, hitherto a vigorous supporter of the Government, gave vent to his feelings with much vivacity. Laying his hand upon his heart, he declared that such large sums were demanded that the nation could not bear them, on which Mr. Pepys,


annoyed at this defection, asserted that if the member for Bristol laid one hand on his heart, he should lay the other on his face, for shame - a taunt for which he was incontinently forced to make a humble apology. Sir John Knight renewed his opposition a few days later, declaring that from the poverty of the people it was impossible to grant the demands. “At this rate we shall soon wear wooden shoes”. After calling for an abolition of pensions he concluded by moving a resolution requiring the revenue to be better managed, and though his motion was not put, the House refused to discuss the King's requests. Sir John thenceforth became a sturdy opponent of the Ministry. In the following December he moved the impeachment of five Roman Catholic peers, and a fortnight later, overflowing with rage on the discovery of the King's base treaty with France, he was one of the loudest in demanding the impeachment of Lord Danby, by whom it had been negotiated.

The year 1678 is memorable for having produced Titus Oates's first villainous fictions respecting an alleged Popish Plot, which threw the nation for a time into a delirium of mingled fury and terror. The immense popularity of the arch-impostor naturally brought imitators and rivals into the field, and amongst those who took part in spilling innocent blood was a wretch named William Bedloe. This man, born at Chepstow, where in youth he worked as a cobbler, spent his early manhood as a menial servant to Englishmen travelling on the continent; but subsequently pretended that he was employed by the Jesuits as an emissary to Rome, Spain, and Flanders. When Oates became the popular idol, and a second witness was found needful to swear away the lives of peaceful Romanists, a reward was offered for an informer. Bedloe, then living in Bristol, at once made a communication to the Mayor, John Lloyd, a pompous and credulous Welshman, who, according to Roger North, loved to embroider his lofty talk with “tags of Latin”. His worship, a fervent believer in the “devilish design” proclaimed by Oates, lost no time in apprising the Government of the startling disclosures made by Bedloe, and received immediate instructions to send the informer to London, where he arrived, wrote Secretary Coventry, “on the 7th instant (November) very safely, by your prudent directions, for which I am to return you his Majesty's thanks”. Lloyd was in fact knighted for his “eminent services”. Bedloe forthwith strove to outstrip Oates in the concoction of alarming fictions, and swore to the existence


of a vast plot for the landing of a Popish army and a general massacre of Protestants. His lying depositions respecting the murder of Sir Edmundbury Godfrey so gratified the House of Commons that he was voted £500. By March, 1679, he was as popular as Oates, was feasted by the citizens of London, and received £10 a week from the Government, whilst he was living at the rate of £2,000 a year. He soon after married a woman of a small fortune, with whom he returned to the West of England. An early trace of him is to be found in the archives at Badminton. Writing on September 5th from Monmouth to the Marquis of Worcester (a Romanist), he asserts that he had made it his business, in passing through Reading, Bristol, Gloucester, and other towns, to contradict reports unfavourable to his lordship, and whenever he found accusations against the Marquis lying in the coffee-rooms, he had torn them up, and had sent some of the coffee men to prison. He soon after settled in Bristol, and lived on Stony Hill (Lower Park Row) for several months. In the summer of 1680 he went back to London, doubtless prepared with a fresh batch of forgeries and informations, out the national mania was subsiding, and his impudent assurance was so shaken by the browbeating arrogance of Jeffreys that he again returned to Bristol, where he was stricken with fever. On August 16th, whilst Chief Justice North was being entertained to dinner by the Town Clerk, Sir John Knight hurried to the house to inform his lordship that the sick man, then lying with little hope of recovery, wished to make an important communication. North undertook to visit Bedloe in the course of the evening, but being strongly distrustful of the rogue, and dreading a snare “to put a sham plot upon him”, he requested the two Sheriffs, his brother Roger, and others, to accompany him. On the arrival of the party, Bedloe made a lengthy speech, in which he declared, on the faith of a dying man, that all his evidence had been truthful; and then, having been sworn, he solemnly asserted that the Duke of York had been concerned in the plot, and that the Queen had promised to give money to introduce the Popish religion. The deposition was sent up to Secretary Jenkins, and the Chief Justice was subsequently summoned before the House of Commons to give a further account of the interview. The deposition was afterwards published, by order of the House. Bedloe, who was in extreme poverty, died on Friday, August 20th. On the following Sunday his body lay “in state” in the Tailors' Hall, and was buried


in the evening at the entrance to the Mayor's chapel in the presence of a great company, the Mayor attending the ceremony, and several members of the Council “bearing up the pall”.

In despite of the unpopularity of the impost, a Poll Tax was sanctioned by Parliament at this time, and the local commissioners appointed to supervise its collection have left some imperfect records of their proceedings. Unfortunately, nothing is to be found respecting the amount extorted from the inhabitants. The tax was levied on a sliding scale, extending from dukes to common labourers, and the few details preserved relate to appeals for abatements, gentlemen who generally claimed the title of esquire showing remarkable eagerness to repudiate the rank when they were called upon to pay for it. The following are specimens of numerous minutes:- “Ordered, that the Sheriffs be eased from being Esquires, and reduced to the quality of gentlemen, and be assessed at £1 each for their titles, and £1 each for moneys, etc. Ordered, that Mr. Thomas Earle [a very wealthy man, knighted soon afterwards] be assessed only at £1 for his quality of gentleman, and £8 for moneys, etc. Ordered, that Mr. John Lloyd [another future knight, famed for pomposity] be eased of the title of Esquire, and be assessed at £1 for his quality of gentleman, and 20s. for moneys”.

The Corporation, in September, 1678, granted to Ichabod Chauncy, a professor of physic and a prominent Dissenter, a lease for four lives of a piece of void ground in Castle Green at a rent of £2 6s. 8d. A new chapel for the congregation worshipping in that locality was soon afterwards erected on part of this site. Another lease of this year discloses the curious fact that the building called Redcliff Gate contained in fact two gates, having a dwelling betwixt them. Froom Gate was constructed in the same manner.

The first improvement scheme carried out by the Common Council, for facilitating traffic in the ancient streets, dates from this period. Between the end of Thomas Street and Bristol Bridge was a narrow and obstructive defile called Leaden Walls, the houses in which belonged to the Tailors' Company. The Corporation, having taken a lease of the property for seventy-five years, demolished some of the houses, including the Lamb tavern at the end of Tucker Street, widened the thoroughfare by eight feet, and finally relet the new and other dwellings, the improvement being effected


at little or no expense. Thomas Street was then extended to the Bridge, the old name of Leaden Walls being abolished. The new Lamb tavern let for £69 a year - a remarkable rent for the period.

A fresh and violent quarrel between the Corporation and the Dean and Chapter broke out in 1678, and continued for several years. Little information respecting it can be found in the corporate records, but some references to the squabble are preserved in the Tanner MSS. in the Bodleian Library and in the State Papers. It is not surprising to learn that the dispute was provoked by the insolence of Bishop Carleton. Down to 1677 it had always been the custom to pray for the Corporation in the Bidding Prayer before the dignitaries of the church. This the Bishop ordered to be altered, and as some of the Chapter refused to obey the instruction, he reviled them in his visitation address for giving precedence to a parcel of coopers and cobblers, and brought them into “much derision in the streets”. He next fell upon Prebendary Crossman, as the leader of the refractory party, ordering him to show cause why he should not be suspended for disobedience, and publicly abused him as a perjured and saucy fellow, who ought to have his gown pulled off his back. Finally he went off to Newmarket races to complain to the King against both the Chapter and the Corporation, and doubtless to make fresh appeals for translation from what he called his “beggarly see”. It seems probable that Crossman and his allies sought to win the Corporation back to the cathedral, which they had deserted, by continuing the ancient form of the Bidding Prayer. But the Council now set up, or possibly revived, a claim to have their State Sword carried erect into the choir before the Mayor and his brethren, and to have it maintained in that position throughout the service; whilst the Chapter insisted that the weapon should be lowered. To maintain their demand, the Chamber laid out £21 9s. for “a cushion and cloth of state, both fringed, and a unicorn, gilded, put up in the College to hold the Mayor's sword”; but the Chapter appears to have refused its assent to this arrangement, for an undated paper preserved by Dr. Tanner states that when the Corporation attended the cathedral, they remained in the nave (really the transepts), and during the sermon only. It is not difficult to imagine the joy with which Bishop Carleton would have plunged into a controversy of this character. But his pertinacious appeals to the Court for preferment resulted in his


translation to Chichester, in January, 1679, and he was succeeded by a lover of peace, Dr. William Goulston, who kept aloof from the strife. In November, 1681, whilst the quarrel was still raging, the new Bishop, in a letter to the Primate, stated that all attempts to get the sword lowered during the service, as was done at York [where a similar contest had been settled by Charles I.], had proved futile. Nearly a year later, September, 1682, his lordship informed the Arcnbishop that on the previous Sunday the Mayor was about to enter the cathedral with the sword erect, accompanied by Lord Chief Justice North, when the writer pointed out to the judge the scandal that would be created by a conflict in the building between the civic and capitular officers. The Chief Justice assenting, the Bishop took him and the Mayor into the palace, where his worship remained whilst the judge and prelate went to prayers. (The sword could not be raised whilst the Mayor was absent.) The absurd controversy was at length settled by the intervention of the Bishop and the judges, it being arranged that the sword should be carried erect into the cathedral, and there laid down upon a cushion. What became of the costly gilded unicorn does not appear. Whilst this teapot storm was raging, the ecclesiastical authorities were by no means a happy family. In a petition to the King, Bishop Goulston stated that the Chapter, clearly in spite of his remonstrance, had let a piece of ground called the Canons' Little Marsh, immediately under the palace windows, for the building and repairing of ships (a use to which it continued to be applied until within living memory). “The noise and stench is so continually offensive, and is such an intolerable nuisance, that your petitioner is not able to live in any part of his house with any health or comfort”. But the King was apathetic to the discomforts of other people. About the same time, the Dean and most of the Chapter revolted against their treasurer, Prebendary Crossman, on the ground that he conducted the capitular business without their privity and consent, and had put up on each side of the Communion Table “two concaves or noases of wood”, which he intended to get carved into images of St. Peter and St. Paul. The Bishop put his foot down firmly against this innovation, and Crossman subsided. Dr. Goulston, whose net income from the bishopric was only about £210 a year, at length grew weary of his troubles, and retired to his rectory in Dorset, where he generally resided until his death, in 1684.


A general election, an event that had not occurred for nearly eighteen years, took place in February, 1679: The two previous members for Bristol, Sir John Knight and Sir Robert Cann were again returned without opposition. The former no sooner reached the House of Commons than he renewed his attacks on the royal policy, demanding the impeachment of Danby, and the exclusion from the throne of the Duke of York, who, he said, was amongst the thickest of the Jesuits. “If the Pope gets his great toe into England all his body will follow”. The Parliament had a very brief duration, being angrily dissolved by the King in the following July. Writs were thereupon issued for a fresh election, which took place in this city on August 25th. On this occasion, to the wrath of the Corporation, which still attempted to impose its will upon the freemen, Mr. Robert Henley, merchant, offered himself as a candidate, and though all record of the poll has perished, some facts that will be given hereafter tend to show that the obnoxious presumer received a majority of votes. The Sheriffs, however, returned his competitors, Knight and Cann. The Council in the following month, still enraged at the opposition, resolved on prosecuting Henley for trading as a merchant in the city, being merely a “foreigner”, but the minute books show that he was entitled to the freedom, and had applied for it, when the Mayor had arrogantly refused to swear him in. Undismayed by his angry opponents, Henley petitioned against the return in October, 1680, but the hearing of his case was deferred by an extraordinary incident, illustrating the abnormal excitement under which both the House of Commons and the local Corporation were labouring through Oates's villainous fabrications. On October 28th the Commons received information that John Roe, Swordbearer of Bristol, had stated on oath before a magistrate that Sir Robert Cann and Sir Robert Yeamans had, about a year previously, publicly asserted - no doubt with their habitual vehemence - that there was no Popish Plot at all, but a Presbyterian Plot. In support of this horrible charge, Roe's affidavit was read before the House, whereupon Cann's colleague, Sir John Knight, rising from his seat, corroborated Roe's assertions. Being called upon to answer his accusers, Sir Robert Cann arose in his turn, and declared that Sir John Knight's credit was such in Bristol that no jury of his neighbours would believe him upon oath, asseverating in a lower tone, but audibly to those near him, “God damn me


'tis true”. (This is the account in the Commons' Journal. Roger North alleges that his choleric relative also called Roe “a damned rogue”.) Knight having been chairman of the committee for inquiring into the Plot during the previous session, the House became greatly excited, and Cann was ordered to withdraw. It next transpired that the Swordbearer was conveniently attending in the lobby to give further information. Being at once brought to the bar, Roe stated that Yeamans and Cann had made the above assertion at the sessions dinner in October, 1679, Yeamans adding that the Dissenters had voted for Knight at the then recent election. The Swordbearer further alleged that the two culprits were mere tools of the Papist Marquis of Worcester, “who governed the city in all things”, and had dragged Roe himself before the Privy Council on an unknown charge, which had cost him £60. Cann was now brought back, and though he repeatedly declared the charge to be false, he was ordered to receive the Speaker's reprehension on his knees, to which he submitted. He was then declared to have been guilty of denying the existence of the Popish Plot, for which unpardonable offence he was committed to the Tower. And finally he was expelled from the House, and received the judgment on his Knees! A warrant for his commitment was at once issued, as was another for the arrest of Sir Robert Yeamans on the same charge. On November 8th the unhappy Cann petitioned the House, acknowledging his guilt, craving pardon, and praying for liberation; whereupon he was released. On the 13th Sir Robert Yeamans appeared at the bar to make a humble apology, and was discharged on payment of heavy fees. The Corporation were now in dread that Henley would be allowed to take his seat, and sent up a petition praying for a fresh election. On December 20th the Committee of the Commons that had inquired into Henley's petition reported that Cann had not been duly elected, and that Henley should have been returned, thus clearly imputing misconduct on the part of the Sheriffs. But the House, overflowing with faction, set aside the report, and resolved that neither of those candidates had been elected, inasmuch as the Mayor and Sheriffs had imposed an oath upon each voter, requiring him to swear that he had not already voted. If this proceeding vitiated the return of one member, it ought also to have upset the election of Sir John Knight, but the House immediately resolved that that worthy was duly elected,


and only one writ was ordered to issue. It was further resolved that the Mayor and Sheriffs should be brought up in custody to answer for their misdemeanour. There is no mention of their appearance in the Journals of the House, but the Common Council minutes state that the Sheriffs went to London, where they were put to great expense and trouble, and £90 were voted to them “to make good the honour of the city, and to encourage future Sheriffs to perform their duty”. Sir Richard Hart, a busy agent of the predominant party, now first styled Tories, received £115 more. The election for the vacant seat took place about the close of the year, but there is no record of the proceedings except that Sir Walter Long, Bart., was returned. Parliament was dissolved in the following week.

Alderman Thomas Stevens (Mayor, 1668-9), died in April, 1679. By his will he bequeathed estates at Bridge Yate, Wick, and Abson, to Sir John Knight and others, trustees, with instructions to apply the rents to the purchase of a piece of ground in St. Philip's parish, and of a similar plot in Temple parish, and to erect thereon two almshouses for the reception and maintenance of twenty-four aged men or women. Sufficient funds having accumulated, the trustees, in September, 1686, bought some property fronting the Old Market, and erected a substantial stone building thereon, which is decorated with a bust of the founder. The Temple Street Almshouse was commenced in 1715, on ground acquired from the Corporation. Owing to the increased value of the estate, the trustees were subsequently enabled to support a number of out-pensioners.

The rigid exclusion from this country of every description of food produced in Ireland was a great obstacle to local commerce, and pressed heavily upon the labouring classes in times of scarcity. In April, 1679, a paper of instructions for the city representatives was drawn up by the Council, in which the members were urged to seek a revision of the statutes prohibiting the importation of Irish cattle. The laws “protecting” the English landed interest were, however, then unassailable. It must be added in fairness to the landlords that their narrow-sighted selfishness was rivalled by that of the manufacturing interest. About this period the Protestants in the north of Ireland began to produce a little fine woollen cloth, and owing to the low price of labour their factories rapidly developed, and they were at length found to be underselling the English clothiers in continental markets. A howl of


indignation was forthwith raised in the House of Commons by west-country members, who declared that their constituents were threatened with absolute ruin; whereupon Parliament, in 1692, imposed such enormous duties on exports of Irish drapery that the new industry was practically destroyed, with calamitous effects to the sister country.

The last Bristol farthings issued by the Corporation a dated 1679, according to Mr. Henfry's work on the coinage, and the author professes to have seen two specimens, no information respecting them, however, is to be found in the civic archives. In May, 1679, the Chamberlain paid £4 1s. “to an attorney about a former business touching the quining of farthings”. The use of tokens was soon afterwards superseded by the issue of copper coins from the royal mint.

The Common Council, in 1679, proposed to make another of their many unsuccessful efforts to carry on a manufacturing business to provide employment for the poor. At a meeting on May 15th a committee previously appointed to consider a proposal made by James Holloway, a Bristol draper, “touching linen manufactory”, brought in a report, the purport of which can be inferred only from the resolution adopted. It was ordered that, for the encouragement of the undertakers, the Corporation should advance them £2,000 without interest, one half for three years, and the remainder for ten years, and should give up to them part of Bridewell, for conversion into a workhouse at the cost of the city. The undertakers were to employ 600 spinners, nominated by the magistrates, and to pay them wages as they merited. Twelve strangers, and no more, were to be imported to teach spinning and weaving, whose wages were to be paid out of the earnings of the spinners. A sum of £600 was to be taken out of charity funds in the hands of the Chamber, and the citizens were to be applied to for loans on city bonds to complete the capital advanced. The Council were so thoroughly in earnest on the subject that nearly £1,000 was subscribed in the room. The rash scheme came to the ears of the city members, then at Westminster, and Sir John Knight, on behalf of himself and his colleague, Sir Robert Cann - apparently then on friendly terms - despatched an urgent protest against the speculation, pointing out that the finances of the Corporation were already in “a deplorable condition”, and that the scheme must inevitably fail, since the Act excluding French linens would shortly


expire, when trade would be sure to return to its old channels. He especially requested that no further debt should be contracted until he and his fellow-member could be heard in the Chamber. The Council, however, persisted in their design, with the customary results. The following item appears in the audit book for 1684:- “Received of Walter Stephens & Co., the undertakers for the linen weaving; freely lent by the city towards its advancement; for the repayment of which the city have given seals to several gift money charities, £600”. As there was no further repayment, the loss was apparently very great. The disappearance of Holloway's name as chief “undertaker” is explained by the tragical story to be narrated hereafter.

An odd item occurs in the Chamberlain's accounts for October, 1679:- “Paid R. Corsley for a new Chamberlain's seal, the old seal being not well done, for instead of a purse, which is the Chamberlain's seal, the old seal was a perfect bell, and not at all like a purse, 15s. 6d.” Mr. Corsley, who is often styled a goldsmith, negotiated bills of exchange, and transacted other financial business, and was in fact a banker before that term came into use.

An incident that must have caused an intense sensation occurred during the summer. Our only information of it is derived from a very rare pamphlet in the British Museum, entitled “Strange and wonderful News from Bristol”, the title-page further alleging that the acts recounted were done for promoting a horrid and damnable Popish Plot. The writer states that on July 24th four sheep were found dead near the city, with all the kidney fat taken out of them, the carcasses and skins being left. Three sheep having been treated in the same way in the previous week, the facts were reported to the magistrates, and the Mayor, several Aldermen and Captain William Bedloe took the matter into their serious consideration, when it was ordered that the watch should be doubled and that six substantial householders should personally serve every night. This was done, he adds, because similar villainies had been practised before the great fires in London and other places, “for the fat with other compounds made up into balls are of an extraordinary furious burning quality, and once kindled cannot be quenched, and stick so fast when thrown that they cannot be removed”. The formal order of the Council for doubling the watch “in regard of the present apprehended danger” was not passed until November, but that Sir John Lloyd took upon himself to deal promptly with


the supposed emergency is only what might be expected from his fussiness and credulity.

A lease of the Bowling Green in the Marsh having nearly expired, the Council, in August, granted a new lease for three lives of the Green and its lodge, at a rent of £12 and two capons, or 5s., to the Mayor, in consideration of the lessee laying out £60 in improvements. The Corporation were to be at liberty to make an Artillery-ground there for the Volunteers already mentioned, and they also reserved a right to use the place “upon any extraordinary occasion, upon elections of burgesses in Parliament, or otherwise”. This is the first mention of local open-air gatherings for electioneering purposes.

The nuisances arising from the unprotected state of the reservoir supplying the Quay Pipe were mentioned in page 289. The Chamber got rid of the dead cats this year by building a Conduit-house at the spring, at a cost of £164.

The churchwardens' books of St. James's parish note in January, 1680, an example of the working of the Sabbatarian laws of the time. It is recorded that three respectable parishioners, one an ex-churchwarden, had been prosecuted in the Bishop's Court for profaning the Lord's Day by walking to Bath. Having confessed their sin, and doubtless paid the heavy fees for which the Court was notorious, they were allowed “by commutation” to escape on contributing 20s. to the parish funds.

It will be remembered that when the city Swordbearer, John Roe, appeared as a witness in the House of Commons, he charged the Marquis of Worcester with having dragged him before the Privy Council for an undefined offence. The Privy Council minutes throw some light upon the subject. On January 21st, 1680, their lordships, having been apprised by affidavit that Roe and one Joseph Tyley had spread seditious news in Bristol, issued a warrant for their arrest, and a week later a similar writ was ordered against Philip Bisse, another Bristolian, for sedition. All the men had arrived in custody before February 6th, but no witnesses were produced against them by their secret prosecutor, and on the 14th Tyley and Roe were “reproved” and discharged, on giving bail for their good behaviour. Roe's assertion that the affair cost him £60 is not at all improbable. Bisse was lodged in the Gatehouse prison for some time, but his ultimate fate is not recorded. A month later Roe and Tyley, with one Godfrey Hellier, were again summoned “to give an account of certain letters”, probably


opened in the Post Office, but there is no further mention of the case.

In their eagerness to suppress the business transactions of “foreigners”, the Corporation sometimes allowed zeal to outrun discretion. On March 1st the Chamberlain paid 1s. 9d. at “the Three Cranes tavern for a quart of sack, and biskett, when the Town Clerk and Thomas Speed was arbitrating the difference between the city and James Mudford about 2 baggs of hops, seized as foreign bought and foreign sold”. Later minutes show that Mudford was really a free burgess, but corporate obstinacy delayed a settlement, and in the meanwhile the hops were damaged by damp. Mudford therefore declined to take them back, and demanded their original value, £17, which the Council were forced to pay. The sequel turns up in the audit book for 1683:- “Received for the hops seized in 1680; being old and not fit for much was feign to sell them for £2 1s.”

The spring of 1680 was notable for the rival agitations of the “petitioners and abhorrers” - the former faction clamouring for the election of a Parliament, whilst the latter addressed the King expressing abhorrence of attacks on the royal prerogative. A presentment of the Bristol grand jury in April, amongst the State Papers, shows that the jury box was packed with Abhorrers, or Tories. The jury thank God that it never entered into their hearts to petition against the King's policy, and trust the magistrates will concur with them in disowning a petition for a Parliament lately carried about the city by disloyal persons. They also request the prosecution of the many turbulent people active in sowing sedition, and desire that a store of arms may be kept in the Guildhall for the preservation of the city. Considering that the grand jury of the following August were summoned by the same Sheriffs, it is somewhat amazing to find them making a presentment of an exactly contrary character. The jury, “in this time of so apparent danger from the many hellish plots”, lament the distracted condition of the city, through animosities fomented by many men for the gratification of private passions, such men feigning loyalty and religion while they were really inflamed by Jesuitical sentiments. The presentment goes on to animadvert on the conduct of the ultra-Royalists, who had not only traduced the Mayor, whose loyalty and orthodoxy were declared to be unquestionable, but had denounced all good Churchmen that showed moderation towards Dissenters as more dangerous


than even Papists. This document was also sent to the Government, and was endorsed, probably by Secretary Williamson, “A seditious presentment”.

A “certificate”, amongst the State Papers of August, introduces to notice a person who afterwards played a prominent part in local affairs - Nathaniel Wade, son of a conspicuous Puritan officer during the Civil War. The certifiers - Sir Robert Cann, Sir Robert Yeamans, and Alderman Olliffe - declared that Wade, then awaiting his trial at Wells assizes, had for three years been guilty of seditious and disloyal practices, and that he and about sixty sectaries, of which he was the ringleader, had formed, without the consent of the authorities, an armed company, and exercised themselves in arms. He had also resisted a justice who was disturbing a conventicle, for which he was fined at quarter sessions, and had since again committed the same offence, for which he and his brother were sent to prison. With what object this document was sent to the Government does not appear.

At the conclusion of the assizes, in August, Chief Justice North and his brother Roger, whose interview with Bedloe has been already recorded, spent a week at Badminton on the invitation of the Marquis of Worcester, whom Roger in his reminiscences styles Duke of Beaufort, though that title was not conferred until 1682. “The duke”, he wrote, “had a princely way of living above any except crowned heads that I have had notice of in Europe, and in some respects greater than most of them. He had about 200 persons in his family, and nine tables covered every day; and for the accommodation of so many a large hall was built. The chief steward dined with the gentlemen and pages, the master of the horse with the coachmen and liveries, the under steward with the bailiffs and husbandmen, . . . my lady's chief woman with the gentlewomen, the housekeeper with the maids, and some others”. The duke, he adds, was Lord-Lieutenant of four or five counties, and Lord President of all Wales. His grace's dictatorial treatment of the Corporation of Bristol was glanced at in the Swordbearer's testimony in the House of Commons, and will be further described in later pages.

Towards the close of the year, the House of Commons, in consequence of complaints made to it from Bristol concerning the sermons and conduct of the Rev. Richard Thompson, appointed a committee to inquire into the case. Thompson was a man of mean birth, but must have had an influential


patron, as in 1676, when only twenty-eight years of age, he was appointed to the canonry of Bedminster in Salisbury Cathedral, in right of which he held the livings of Bedminster, St. Mary Redcliff, St. Thomas, and Abbot's Leigh. Soon after his arrival in Bristol, he began to be notorious for his pulpit invectives against Dissenters, and witnesses deposed before the committee as to the language he had used in a sermon preached in St. Thomas's church a few months before. Even the Devil, he said, blushed at Presbyterians; they were as great traitors as the Papists, and he hoped they would all be flung into gaol and their houses burnt. Hampden, he added, was a villain for refusing to pay the King's rightful demand of ship-money. In another sermon in the same church he asserted that Queen Elizabeth was a lewd and infamous woman, and then proceeded to traduce the House of Commons and the Reformation. Out of doors his talk was equally unseemly. He had reviled several of the cathedral dignitaries, and denounced people who attended their sermons as brats of the Devil. He had, he said, been a hundred times at Mass in France, and he did not know but what he should change his religion. Some coarse expressions aspersing Queen Elizabeth were uttered to Roe, the Swordbearer, whom he described as a “lusty fellow”, born out of due season. Thompson was confronted with these witnesses, and confessed to having spoken to the effect they deposed. The committee having reported these facts to the House, the Commons resolved that the offender was a scandal to his profession, that he should be impeached, and that the report on his case should be printed. (A copy of the pamphlet is in Mr. G.E. Weare's collection.) The dissolution of Parliament, a few days later, put an end to further proceedings. No better evidence can be given as to the character of the Government of the day than the fact that Thompson was appointed to the first vacant canonry in Bristol cathedral, and was promoted to the office of Dean in 1684, though utterly detested by the Bishop and his colleagues in the Chapter. On June 21st, 1685, he preached a sermon in the cathedral to the troops brought into the city by the Duke of Beaufort, in which he insisted that subjects should passively obey their Prince, and even humbly submit to be punished for not observing his sinful commands. James II., he added, was great and wise and merciful, and would be known to future ages as James the Just. Being a man after the King's heart, he was far on his way to a


bishopric, when his career was cut short by death in November, 1685.

The violence of political factions that had marked several previous years reached its climax early in 1681, when, owing to the ferment in London, a Parliament was summoned to meet at Oxford. It would seem that ardent adherents of the two rival camps could not meet in Bristol without coming into collision. To cite an instance found amongst the State Papers, it appears that on February 11th, whilst the Mayor (Sir Richard Hart), Sir John Knight, and other Aldermen were assembling in the Tolzey for judicial business, the two worthies just named, who were getting ready to take the field as rival candidates, lost no time in insulting each other, the irascible old knight terming his competitor a base, ungrateful fellow, giving him the lie to his face, and threatening him with his cane - all which was forthwith reported to the Government by the Mayor, who prayed the King to redress the “ intolerable affront”, but of course said nothing about the unruliness of his own tongue. The Bristol election concluded on March 7th, after scenes of unprecedented excitement. Practices hitherto unknown were adopted to secure support for the rival candidates. The ultra-Royalists secretly besought William Penn to influence Quaker voters, promising that the sect should be exempted from the persecution of Dissenters. The opposite party, on the other hand, had recourse to a London printer, and produced an electioneering placard, probably the first ever seen in Bristol. In this unique broadside, of which there is a copy in the British Museum, the “lovers of freedom” are desired to take notice that “hundreds of persons” had been placed on the roll of burgesses at the expense of Tory wire-pullers, to the injury of the old freemen. Drinking and treating were, of course, widely prevalent. The candidates were Sir Richard Hart, Mayor, and leader of the Tories; Thomas Earle, Mayor in the following year, generally esteemed a Whig, but a bitter enemy of Dissenters; Sir Robert Atkyns, the Recorder, who held aloof from bigots on both sides, but was probably a Whig; and Sir John Knight, whose anti-Popery fanaticism and opposition to the Government had deadened old high-flying principles, and who was now scornfully termed “an old rat” by a Tory chronicler. The poll, which luckily has been preserved, resulted as follows:- Mr. Earle, 1,491; Sir R. Hart, 1,462; Sir R. Atkyns, 1,435; Sir J. Knight, 1,301. Through some disagreement between the Sheriffs, all the


candidates were returned as duly elected. Sir John Knight, as was to be expected, vented his wrath at being at the bottom of the poll by swearing at large, publicly branding those who voted against him, according to a Tory grand-jury presentment, as “Popish dogs, Jesuits and devils”. On the meeting of Parliament a petition claiming the seats was presented on behalf of Atkyns and Knight, but the House was dissolved after sitting only a few days. The Easter sessions grand jury, just referred to, denounced the petition as full of falsehoods, and suggested the removal of the Recorder!

On March 8th, immediately after the election, an incident of an exciting character occurred at the Council House. After the death of Sir John Lloyd, some weeks previously, the Mayor had been thrice requested to summon a Court of Aldermen to supply the vacancy, but Hart refused, being desirous of postponing the matter until Sir Robert Atkyns had left the city, when the Mayor's opponents would be deprived of a vote. At length the Recorder and five other Aldermen convened a Court on the above day, and requested the Mayor and others to attend. At the hour appointed the Mayor was at the Tolzey, but sulkily avoided to enter the Chamber, and the six Aldermen present proceeded in his absence, unanimously electing Thomas Day, the senior Councillor on the roll, and a man of ample wealth. Mr. Seyer's assertion that “it was by no means a party business” seems justified by the facts. One of the Aldermen present had been a zealous supporter of Hart in the Parliamentary contest, and Sir Robert Cann, a still warmer adherent of the Mayor, was prevented from voting for Day only by illness. The new Alderman, however, had a fatal fault in the eyes of the Mayor: he had voted at the poll for the Recorder and Sir John Knight. The first act of the Tory majority in the Council touching the matter was somewhat pitiful. They resolved that the entertainment of the Recorder at the gaol delivery, which had become a long-established custom, should be discontinued, and search was ordered to be made in the records to see whether his yearly fee of £20 could not be cut down. But this did not satisfy the Mayor and his more furious adherents, who determined upon an extraordinary step - the indictment of the Recorder and three other Aldermen, whom they charged at the quarter sessions with conspiracy and riot. The prosecutors did not dare to attack all those concerned in Day's election, for the trial of six justices before the Mayor and the four Aldermen


ready to obey his orders would have scandalised the city. Hart was moreover astute enough to wait until after the annual civic elections, when the choice of two uncompromising partisans as Sheriffs rendered it certain that the jury-box would be packed by men of similar passions. In the meantime, he and his four henchmen, Cann, Yeamans, Olliffe and Crump, held a Court of Aldermen, and filled the alleged vacancy by electing Thomas Earle, then Mayor-elect. The indictment produced at the October sessions against the Recorder and three other defendants asserted that, in pursuance of a wicked conspiracy, they broke by force of arms into the Tolzey, and riotously assembled in the Council House, where they held a secret council for the purpose of illegally electing Day. It was perfectly known to all in Court that those charges were false; but the unscrupulous jury at once found a verdict of guilty. An appeal being, however, demanded, the judgment was respited. Pending the issue, Hart's friends devised a plan for bringing up the Recorder for trial before themselves, with a view of dismissing him from office. The ringleader in this project was one of the new Sheriffs, the third John Knight of this troublous reign, son of the respectable sugar-refiner, and surpassing even his titled namesake in intemperance and scurrility. This official, on November 15th, laid before the Common Council a series of “articles” against Sir Robert Atkyns, embodying the charges laid in the indictment, with others of a like character; and the Chamber summoned the Recorder to answer those charges within three months. Sir Robert, however, treated the proceeding with contempt, and it was found prudent to abandon the design. In Michaelmas Term, 1682, the Recorder appeared in the Court of King's Bench to defend his own case. The scene was a remarkable one. Atkyns had been deprived by the King of his judgeship in the Common Pleas for his uprightness and independence in the discharge of his functions, a proffered bribe for servility having been scornfully rejected. He now appeared at the bar “in his cloak”, discarding legal apparel, and was received by the bench with great respect, a chair being brought for him by order of the Chief Justice. After pointing out various legal defects in the indictment, he argued that the Mayor's assumed supremacy over the Aldermen, and the pretended illegality of an aldermanic election at which Hart wilfully refused to be present, could not be substantiated. He further showed that Hart was acting as a justice and an alderman in defiance of the


express words of the city charters. He had come up at the last gaol delivery, but not at the proper time, requesting to be sworn in, and his partisans made a hideous tumult in his support, but he (the Recorder) refused to let the oath be then tendered, and withdrew, and the ceremony of swearing, which was illegal in his absence, was a pure nullity. The venerable gentleman concluded with some striking remarks on the state of the civic body. He had held, he said, the Recordership for twenty-one years, the longest term ever known. Until the last electoral contest, which he had not sought, he had the good will of all parties, even of Hart, for he would never join any section, and strove to promote unity. But “ever since they grew rich and full of trade and Knighthood - too much sail and too little ballast - they have been miserably divided. And unless this Court will examine their disorders, and command peace and order to be observed, I cannot safely attend any more, or hold any gaol delivery”. The Court soon after determined that the indictment was vicious, and quashed the verdict. In the following December Atkyns resigned the office he had held so honourably. It was reported that he did so at the solicitation of his friends; Chief Justice North asserted that he was compelled to retire by the Governments threats of prosecution, but in a letter to Secretary Jenkins complaining of his unworthy treatment, Sir Robert states that he withdrew by the friendly advice of that minister. He lived to see the downfall of the dynasty, and to become Lord Chief Baron under William III.

The fierce agitation provoked by the election continued for many months. Reference has been already made to the presentment made by the factious grand jury at the April sessions, but there is a further paragraph in the document indicating the regimen that Hart and his school were desirous of imposing on public opinion. The jury strongly denounced the coffee-houses and tippling-houses in the city, which they alleged were constantly frequented by seditious sectaries and disloyal persons, where visitors were entertained with false news, scandalous libels, and pamphlets dishonouring the Church and the Government. It was therefore recommended that no news, printed or written, and no pamphlet, should be suffered to be read in any coffee-house, unless it had been first sanctioned |by the Mayor, or she Alderman of the ward.

The Councils quarrel with the Recorder was followed by


a dispute with another, and much less reputable, civic official, whose appearance in the House of Commons in the case of Sir Robert Cann had given great offence. A. minute dated May 31st, 1681, reads as follows:- “John Roe, Swordbearer, having in many respects misbehaved himself, ordered that he be immediately dismissed”. Doubts having arisen as to the legal validity of this decree, the following note was afterwards interpolated:- “At a Council the 20th June, the House having assigned no particular cause against the said John Roe, ordered that those might be assigned: for bearing false testimony against several persons of quality in this city; for refusing come (sic) from London with Mr. Mayor when thereto required; for speaking very opprobrious reproachful words of the magistracy and Government”. The post being declared vacant, one Daniel Pym was elected in the following August. Two months later it is recorded that Roe had applied for a mandamus for restitution to his office, and the Mayor, on instructions, retained three barristers to resist the claim. Nevertheless, in January, 1682, the Council, in doubt as to its proceedings, thought it advisable to begin de novo, and summoned Roe to show cause why he should not be dismissed. Roe accordingly produced a “humble answer” to the above charges, denying the alleged misdemeanours, but refusing, on legal advice, to answer further until his suit in the King's Bench was decided. He was thereupon again dismissed. Roe's proceedings for the following eighteen months are involved in mystery. He was, in fact, engaged in an extensive conspiracy, of which an account will be given in 1683, and saved his life only by a flight to Holland. The Corporation exulted over what appeared to be the extermination of its litigious official. His surprising resurrection and ultimate triumph will be narrated in 1691.

Two destructive fires, one upon the Quay and the other in Wine Street, occurred in the early months of 1681, and, as was always the case, the provision made against such calamities was found practically unserviceable. The Council, in June, ordered the parishes to procure fire- engines and an adequate supply of buckets. Old engravings show that the fire-engines of the time were little larger or more powerful than the garden engines of the present day, but the vestries were unwilling to incur expense, and nothing appears to have been done; for in September, 1685, after another alarming fire, the Council “revived” the above order, apparently with as little effect as before.


The Marquis of Worcester, Lord-Lieutenant, having given orders for a muster of the militia in September, the dominant party in the Council resolved to avail themselves of his visit to mark their adherence to his ultra-Royalist principles. An invitation to the Marquis and his two sons to accept the hospitality of the Corporation having been graciously accepted, it was resolved that the freedom should be presented to his lordship for his many favours, not only by his influence with the King, but by his “happy counsel and advice”, humbly trusting that the city might never want the favour and patronage of his family. The same compliment was also tendered to the Marquis's sons. The noble guests seem to have been lodged at the mansion of Sir Robert Cann, but one of the banquets given to them took place in Merchants' Hall, and was probably offered by the Society. The Corporation expended £186, of which £110 were received by Sir Robert Cann. Amongst the minor items of the account were 4s. for two pounds of tobacco - a vast reduction in the price of that article as compared with earlier records - and 1s. 10d. for a gross of pipes; which prove that smoking had become a post-prandial custom amongst the upper classes.

About the time when the members of the Corporation were hob-nobbing with nobility, humbler citizens were entertaining a visitor whose name will be ever associated with the progress and development of the English race. Soon after William Penn, whose Bristol extraction has been already noted, had obtained the charter constituting him proprietor of Pennsylvania (February 24th, 1681), he began preparations for the foundation of his colony. At his instigation, the Quakers of Bristol organized a company, styled the Free Society of Traders in Pennsylvania, and in the autumn Penn came down to confer with the leading members, amongst whom were men named Moore, Ford, and Claypole, the first-named, Nicholas Moore, a lawyer, being their chairman. On September 27th Penn granted the company 20,000 acres of land for a settlement. A vessel having been fitted out, in which several persons embarked as emigrants, Moore departed in charge of the expedition. Penn, with a London contingent, sailed shortly afterwards from the Thames.

Amongst the Tanner MSS. in the Bodleian Library is a letter from Bishop Goulston to the Primate, which throws some light on the corporate yearnings of the time. Writing on November 16th, the Bishop stated that the Mayor had


that day set off for London, previously begging the writer to appeal for the Archbishop's assistance in the application he was about to make to the King. In the first place, the Corporation desired the grant of a new charter; secondly they wished to have a lease, in reversion, of Kingswood Chase; and thirdly, they were anxious that Bristol might have a Lord Mayor. It is characteristic of the civic record that no hint of any of those proposals is to be found in the Council minutes, the Mayor's journey being ostensibly for the sole purpose of taking the oaths. It will presently be seen that the supplication for a new charter was granted in a manner little satisfactory to many of the applicants. The other requests were eluded, but to soften the Mayor's disappointment he was dubbed a knight, and reappeared in the civic chair as Sir Thomas Earle.

The closing months of the year were marked by the outbreak of a persecution of Dissenters surpassing the grosser of its forerunners. It began in November by the arrest under the Conventicles Acts, of all the Nonconformst ministers and about 100 laymen, all of whom were flung into Newgate. In December, the notorious attorney, Job Hellier, followed by a smith and fourteen labourers, broke into the Presbyterian chapel, and ordered his hirelings to pull down the “prattling box”, the pews, and the galleries, and to destroy all the windows, which was thoroughly accomplished. The Broadmead meeting-house, and that of the Quakers in the Friars, were next reduced to wrecks, and the timber and other materials of the latter were carried off, and appraised at £2 9s. 6d., though the damage was really more than a hundredfold greater. The outrages were perpetrated under pretence of distraining for a fine of £5 laid on each building by Sir Richard Hart and his clique for not sending a soldier in arms to the military muster; but they were doubtless instigated by party vindictiveness, many of the Dissenters having voted against Hart at the Parliamentary election. In the case of Broadmead chapel the fine had been actually paid, yet the havoc wrought there left it a mere ruin. On December 26th, the Mayor, with the Sheriffs and the Bishop's Secretary, took the field in person, and ordered all the men gathered in that chapel to be committed to prison. A few days later it was again entered by order of the justices, when the seats were torn up and burnt; and within a few weeks all the other chapels were wrecked the windows broken, the doors nailed up, and the minister


and many of the congregations sent to gaol. Children were not punishable under the Acts, but several boys, caught holding meetings for prayer whilst their fathers and mothers were in gaol, were put in the stocks and beaten with whalebone rods. Fifteen boys and girls were committed to Bridewell as alleged disturbers of the peace, and Hellier urged the justices to have them lashed with the cat. Some of their parents were meanwhile dying in the filthy prisons, and many were beggared by the seizure and sale of their goods. Such Dissenters as remained at liberty were now forced to betake themselves to the fields for worship, and in despite of the oppression their meetings were sometimes attended by from 1,000 to 1,500 people. At the sessions in March, 1682, upwards of 150 persons were fined £20 a month for not attending church. Hellier had then become under-sheriff of Somerset, and in concert with one Player, a magistrate at Kingswood, and with a son of the aldermanic publican, Olliffe, mercenaries were organized for preventing open-air services in every suburban district. On April 11th, whilst a minister named Knight, and a High Street mercer named Ford, were striving to escape from one of these gangs by crossing the Avon, near Conham, Mr. Ford was drowned, and Mr. Knight died subsequently from exhaustion. A coroner's jury found three of Olliffe's harpies guilty of manslaughter, but at the trial, at Gloucester, the judge, awed by the presence of Lord Worcester's eldest son, ordered the prisoners to be acquitted, and rebuked the coroner. Hellier, in the meanwhile, got six of Knight's congregation committed to Somerset assizes, where, on his false allegations of their disloyalty, they were each fined £80, and sent to gaol until the money was as paid; whilst in Bristol he applied for 500 writs against recusants, the fine being £20 a month. In July, the Mayor and his colleagues posted train-bands at the city gates on Sunday mornings, to prevent Dissenters from repairing to the fields, but this merely forced determined men to depart on Saturday nights. Large bodies of officers were, however, employed to capture such as gathered for worship, and imprisonments without any warrant were of constant occurrence. Newgate was in so vile a state that one of the aldermen publicly avowed that he would not send his dog to it, yet it was frequently so gorged with Dissenters that four were compelled to repose on each miserable pallet. On one occasion a surplus


glut of thirty-five Quakers had to sleep upon the ground. Not content with endangering the lives of his victims, Hellier levied exorbitant distraints on their goods, breaking into houses and shops for that purpose, and selling the spoil at a small fraction of its value. To give a single illustration of the numberless outrages, Mr. Richard Marsh, a merchant in Wine Street, was deprived of two butts of wine, which were sold for the derisory sum of £4, and then £6 in money were taken forcibly from him to make up a fine of £10. Only a few months later, a second distress was levied upon him for the same amount, when all his account-books were carried off, together with a quantity of goods, the officers even ransacking the chamber in which his wife was lying in child-bed. Many employers of labour were so impoverished as to be forced to discharge their workmen. A London news-letter of August 17th stated that above 1,500 Bristol Dissenters were then under prosecution. With the exception of Hellier, no one was so active and so cruel in this persecution as Hellier's prompter, Sheriff John Knight, who had learnt inhumanity whilst a factor in the West Indies. His exploits being gleefully reported to the Government, he was rewarded for his services with the honour of knighthood. (It is gratifying to learn that “old Sir John Knight” was disgusted with the brutality of his namesake, and was spoken of by a Quaker pamphleteer as “a worthy magistrate”.) The fines imposed on the Bristol Quakers alone in 1683 amounted to £16,440. One prominent Friend, Charles Harford, paid fines amounting to over £300, and spent several months in prison. An attempt was made by Knight and Hellier to put in operation an Act of Elizabeth, under which persons refusing to conform to the Church and not abjuring the realm were punishable with death. In fact, Richard Vickris, son of Alderman Vickris, deceased, had this sentence actually pronounced upon him by Sir John Churchill, the new Recorder, but a writ of error was procured through the intervention of the Duke of York, and the prisoner was discharged. One of the most melancholy facts connected with the persecution is the language in which the packed grand juries, at quarter sessions, express warm approval of the proceedings of the authorities, urge them to a still more vigorous execution of the laws, and insolently “present” those magistrates (old Sir John Knight, Alderman Crabb, and Alderman Creswick), who


discountenanced the outrages that were being constantly committed.

William Colston, father of the philanthropist, died on November 21st, 1681, in the house in Wine Street that had been his dwelling for nearly fifty years. He had resigned his aldermanic gown in 1664, but continued his mercantile enterprises with great vigour, and became probably the largest importer of Levant fruits, besides carrying on an extensive wine and oil trade with the Peninsula. Although five of his sons attained manhood, none of them remained to assist in the Bristol house, and most of them are supposed to have been long resident in Spain or Portugal. Near the end of his life he appears to have sent for his fourth son, Thomas, to conduct his business, and that gentleman soon afterwards was admitted a freeman, and elected a Common Councillor, and purchased from the son of Sir Henry Creswick the stately mansion of that family in Small Street. The second son, Sir Richard Colston, resigned the consulship of Marseilles soon after his father's death, but did not return to Bristol. The early life of Edward, the eldest child of the family, is as obscure as that of his brothers. According to a statement made by himself, he was educated in London. The books of the London Mercers' Company show that at Midsummer, 1664, he was apprenticed, being then within five months of completing his eighteenth year, for a term of eight years, to Humfray Aldington, mercer. At the end of his servitude he must have been absent from the capital, for though the privileges of a London freeman were indispensable to a resident merchant, he did not apply for admission into his Company for eleven years. He was at length enrolled on May 2nd, 1673, when he paid a small fine for his tardiness. Of his presence in Bristol there is no evidence until June 15th, 1682, when he was in his forty-sixth year, and when the Chamberlain records a loan made by him to the Corporation:- “Received of Mr. Edward Colston, of London, merchant, at 6 per cent., £1800”: a sum subsequently increased to £2,000. This transaction probably took place whilst the lender was on a visit to the city to wind up his late father's estate, of which he was executor. In December, 1683, he was again in Bristol, in consequence of the fatal illness of his brother Thomas, and took the opportunity to seek admission to the freedom, and also to the Merchants' Society. Thomas died in the following year,


bequeathing the house in Small Street, and apparently the mercantile business, to Edward; and from 1685 to 1688 the latter imported, in ships previously belonging to his father, yearly cargoes of oil and other goods. That he was not even then a resident is proved by the minute-books of the Merchants' Society, in which his presence at a Hall is only twice recorded; the words “at London”, or “lives at London”, being generally written against his name on the roll in explanation of his absence. During the same period, in fact, he was taking an active part in the management of Christ's Hospital. In 1687, when the policy of the Corporation had probably given him dissatisfaction, he demanded the repayment of his loan, and £600 were refunded early in the year. But he continued to press for the balance, and on October 13th the Mayor had the unpleasant duty of informing the Council that an “extent” had been levied on the city property to recover the amount due. A few days later, Colston's attorney, Mr. Thomas Edwards, came to the rescue of the impecunious Council, advancing the required amount on a mortgage, and the unpleasant affair was thus settled. About the same time Mr. Colston disposed of his Bristol ships, closed his local transactions, and in April, 1689, removed from London to Mortlake, where he resided almost uninterruptedly until his death. There is no trace of another visit to Bristol until 1700.

It is difficult to realize the conditions of English social life in an age destitute of newspapers. With the exception of the Government organ, the London Gazette, which twice a week produced proclamations and tidings of official appointments, with brief records of horse races, cock fights, startling highway robberies, and executions of criminals - all compressed into two small pages - no periodical touching on current events and topics was allowed to be printed. The only manner in which the provincial public could obtain a knowledge of passing occurrences was by means of London “news letters”, the writers of which skilfully collected facts and gossip from various sources. These weekly letters became about this time extremely popular amongst the class that could afford to purchase them. The Corporation audit book contains the following items under December, 1681:- “Paid the Town Clerk, for one year's Mr. Munday's letters, £6; postage, 39s.” The cost of each letter was thus a little over 3s.


The first party of French Huguenots driven out of their country by the persecution of Louis XIV. landed at Bristol in December, 1681. Amongst the State Papers of that month is a letter from the Mayor and the high-flying Aldermen to Secretary Jenkins, stating that the immigrants consisted of men, women and children, generally of the meaner sort, and needing relief, and that many more were understood to be coming. The writers were at a loss how to dispose of them, owing to their great number and poverty, the city having already more poor than it could keep at work, and directions were requested as to where the immigrants should be sent. The truth was that the Mayor and his allies were greatly annoyed by the influx of this new body of Dissenters, who received much sympathy from the citizens. Struck by a happy thought, the irritated justices, in the following month, again addressed Jenkins, begging that the fines levied on persons resorting to conventicles might by the King's grace be applied to the relief of the French; but there is no record of this proposal having been carried out. Another numerous party of Huguenots landed in the following August, and had a hospitable reception. On this occasion the Corporation disbursed £42 10s. for their relief. According to local tradition, many of the fugitives were mariners, and this class would be soon absorbed in the fast-increasing merchant service of the port. There was, however, a sprinkling of higher-class immigrants, a minute still in existence recording that ten merchants, a physician, three surgeons, and nine weavers took the oath of allegiance to the English crown.

The State Papers for 1682 and 1683 contain a considerable number of papers, hitherto unpublished, relating to the quarrels and intrigues then disturbing the Corporation. From the facts already narrated, one would scarcely suppose that Sir Thomas Earle's treatment of Dissenters could have merited disapproval on the ground of its leniency. The Mayor himself, in a letter sent to Secretary Jenkins, in June, 1682, took credit for his thoroughness. The King's affairs in the city, he said, “were in a good position, the conventicles being in a manner wholly suppressed. We deal in all tenderness with the Quakers, but such is their obstinacy that near 30 are in Newgate, and 60 women in Bridewell, where we put them for more air, and to prevent their clamours above” - that is,


to the Court. But this was far from satisfactory to the vindictive Sheriff, the second Sir John Knight, who in the same month forwarded to the Minister a furious indictment against Sir Thomas. It is highly characteristic of this unscrupulous man that the missive, and others that will shortly be mentioned, are not in his handwriting, and bear no signature, and are known to be concocted by him only from the endorsements of the recipients or other circumstances. The Mayor is charged with scandalous indulgence to all recusants and sectaries. He refuses to send Baptists to prison; those that are committed by other aldermen he induces the gaoler to liberate; he takes sureties from rich Quakers and discharges them at his own house; when Quakers are brought before the bench, and he finds himself outvoted by “honest” justices, he delays committing until he can get a majority of aldermen on his side, and then the offenders are let off; if sectaries are convicted by the “loyal” magistrates, he advises the prisoners to appeal, when he and his adherents outvote the honest justices; it is true he sends some poor fanatics to prison, but that is done to arouse clamour against prosecutions; and finally by these arts he has put a full stop to proceedings against conventicles. After expatiating on these scandalous practices, and detailing the case of the Recorder, the libeller comes to the real object he has at heart. He urges that the Corporation have forfeited their charter, and earnestly hopes that the King will commiserate the condition of his loyal subjects, over-ridden by disaffected magistrates, by issuing a Quo Warranto, and so put an end to the existing civic body.

That Sir John Knight II. had colleagues in the Council equally eager to welcome a drastic royal policy will speedily be shown. The Government, however, were not yet ready to move; and the intriguers found it necessary to take steps to secure a new Mayor, and new Sheriffs, on whom they could thoroughly rely. A difficulty was encountered in the fact that, in regard to both offices, several of those entitled to be elected by the usual course of rotation were men whose moderate principles rendered utterly objectionable. The obstacle was found to be so serious that it was resolved to apply for help to the Marquis of Worcester, and his lordship, cleverly disguising the real object of his visit, ordered a muster of the militia for the alleged purpose of imposing the test oaths on the troopers. During his stay, the customary corporate festivities took place, which gave the Marquis an opportunity of inculcating obedience and


fidelity to the good cause, and he apparently made several converts. He ended by ordering the election of Thomas Eston as Mayor, and that person, with George Hart and John Combes as Sheriffs, was duly elected. Sir Richard Hart jubilantly informed Secretary Jenkins that “the loyal party carried it without much struggling”. The Marquis, writing to the same Minister, frankly avowed that he had come to the city “to promote a good election”, adding, “I have so far proceeded [succeeded?] in it by strengthening some, and forcing others, that though the King's friends are not so thorough as I could wish, the result will be satisfactory. . . . We have been forced to leap over the heads of some that of course should go before” (those elected).

A local instance of the mutability of human institutions occurs in the Council minutes of September 15th. In the previous century the chapel of “St. Anne in the Wood” (Fillwood), near Brislington, was a highly popular place of pilgrimage, and had seen even royal visitors offering at its shrine. In 1682, a pottery had been erected amongst the ruins, and at the above meeting, Edward Ward, potter, St. Anne's, was admitted a freeman gratis. It is probable that this manufactory was the first in the district to produce articles superior to the coarse stoneware turned out by local potters. The use of crockery for domestic purposes was still far in the future, the dinners of the rich being served on pewter, while humble traders and working-men were content to dine on wooden platters.

The Council, in December, filled the office of Recorder by the election of Sir John Churchill, subsequently Master of the Rolls. This man's pompous entertainment in Bristol of a member of the King's harem is already known to the reader. But the Chamber, as if to emphasize its debasement, ordered that the hospitality it had refused to Sir Robert Atkyns at the gaol delivery should be tendered to his successor “with all respect”. The Mayor, with Yeamans, Olliffe, Crump, the second Sir John Knight, and others seized the opportunity to inform Secretary Jenkins of the appointment, trusting it would give the King satisfaction. The real aim of the letter, however, was to urge the adoption of the policy already prayed for by Knight. The city would never be well settled, said the writers, until (old) Sir John Knight and the Aldermen that followed him were displaced like Sir Robert Atkyns. This dispatch having been sent direct to Whitehall, the prime mover, Knight, drew up a much longer diatribe, which he forwarded to the


Recorder for communication to the Government. As in the former case, the letter bears no signature, but there can be no question as to its authorship. It describes the Court of Aldermen as consisting of the Mayor and four “good men”, - Yeamans, Olliffe, Crump and Hart - and seven “ill men”, who would be increased to eight next election if a Mayor were chosen by seniority, and two “ill” sheriffs would also come in by rotation. To get the aldermanic body in a “good” state the writer proposed that four of the “bad” men - the elder Knight, Lawford, Crabb and Creswick - should be tried for riot, convicted and ejected. Earle could be laid aside, “his election not being good”, a naive confession of the malpractices of the clique. Thus five “good” men could be chosen, and the succession of “bad” men would be destroyed. If this plan were not approved, Knight suggested that the King should send down a mandate to the aldermanic body for the displacement of the “bad” men, whose relatives would then not dare to support them, as they otherwise would. “All this”, he concludes, “is our judgment”, showing that he was acting with the assent of his partisans. The course taken by the Government will speedily appear.

The Dean and Chapter, in 1682, gave orders for the erection in the Cathedral of a “fair great organ”, still in existence. An organ built shortly before the Civil War was then in use, but was doubtless dilapidated. A capitular minute of December 10th reads:- “It appearing to the Dean and Chapter that Paul Heath, organist, and master of the choristers, hath had several admonitions for keeping a disorderly ale house, debauching the choir men, and other disorders there, and neglecting the service of the church: and being now credibly informed that he doth still keep ill order in his house, and hath suffered one Rouch, a barber, to trim in his house on the Lord's Day, . . . (and according to report hath allowed several town-dwellers to sit tippling in his house till they were drunk, or very much overgone with liquor, one of them being found there dead, and hath often suffered illegal games there”,) ... it is ordered that Heath be “removed, expelled, and dismissed”. The fixed capitular payments were then £544 a year; of which the Dean received £100, the six prebendaries £20 each, the four minor canons, £16 each, six singers £12 each, four choristers £4 each, and the organist and schoolmaster £20 each. The ordinary income was about £250 in excess of the outlay, and this surplus was raised to over £1,000


in years when valuable leases were renewed. Most of the balance was divided annually amongst the Chapter, the Dean receiving a fourth and each prebendary an eighth.

Amongst the freemen admitted this year was Onesiphorus Tyndall, grocer, a native of Stinchcombe, who had served as apprentice to Nathaniel Crowder, and who in the course of a long life became a wealthy and influential citizen. Mr. Tyndall was treasurer of Lewin's Mead Chapel in 1704. The name of Athelstane Tyndall, probably a brother or cousin, also occurs in the civic records.

A unique entry occurs in the Council minutes of February 6th, 1683. It records that Edward Young, Common Councillor, being then present, an excommunication was produced against him, whereupon he withdrew. In the following month, Sir John Knight II., in a letter to Secretary Jenkins, incidentally stated that another Councillor [Michael] Hunt, was also excommunicated. There is no further reference to either case, either in the civic minutes or elsewhere.

The idiom of the West of England is amusingly adopted by the Chamberlain in February, when he notes the payment of half a crown to some men “that brought out the engin from under the Guildhall to try him whether he was in order”. The masculine instrument did not give satisfaction, and a new engine was purchased in 1684 for £34 15s. According to Sir Richard Hart's account of his squabble with old Sir John Knight in the Tolzey, his angry antagonist's walking-stick was also of the male gender:- “He took up his cane and shook him at me”.

The subserviency of the Common Council to the new despotism having been so unreserved, it seems at first sight surprising that the King and his advisers were still dissatisfied with the situation. The charters of Bristol and other towns, however, implied the existence of popular self-government, and though men of the stamp of the second Sir John Knight and Sir Robert Yeamans were everywhere ready to obey royal dictation, there was always a possibility that those who succeeded them might refuse to be used as mere tools. By deft legal trickery the Corporation of London had been driven to surrender their charters, and the lives and property of any men daring to oppose the royal will in that city were soon at the mercy of subservient judges and juries packed with enemies. The Government now resolved to secure similar powers in every corporate town, and in March, 1683, the Court of King's Bench, on the motion of the


Attorney-General, granted a “rule”, requiring the Corporation of Bristol to show cause why a Quo Warranto should not issue for practically depriving the city of its ancient franchises. Even before this step was taken, Sir John Knight II. had sent one of his characteristic letters to the Secretary of State, urging the Government to proceed with vigour. He had now abandoned the plan he had previously suggested, and hypocritically pretends that he is the mouthpiece of others in recommending a sweeping revolution:- “I do not appear in the business on my own hand, but on the desire of the Mayor and several of the Council, who are agreed the city cannot be settled without a Quo Warranto; for a purge will be so far from settling us that it will divide us”. He forwarded the names of the members of the Council, showing 26 as ready to bend to the King's desire, and 22 (including seven Aldermen) as “doubtful”, but he thought that eight of these would prove “right” on a division. Five others were absentees, showing that the Council numbered 63 instead of 43. “If I have erred in one of the 26 men, I will never see his Majesty's face. They would despise any one who thought otherwise of them. Before I attempted this design of a surrender, I gained a confession from each of them, saying they would submit”. He then disclosed the manner in which grand jury presentments were manufactured:- “In the expectation that a writ would be sent, it was designed I should be foreman of a grand jury, that so their presentment might agree with the Council”. Anticipating an easy victory, the Attorney-General caused the writ to be sent down towards the end of March, and the Council assembled on the 29th, when, to the consternation of the schemers, a resolution that the charters should be at once surrendered was defeated on a division. There is no further information in the minute-book, but a letter of the newly created Duke of Beaufort to Secretary Jenkins, dated April 1st, gives some interesting details. His grace was surprised at the disappointment, seeing that Sir John Knight, the Bishop, the Mayor, the Town Clerk, and a “great number of the considerablest of the loyal party” had been to Badminton to inform him that they had a moral assurance of success. There had, however, been a defection amongst those that had promised. Sir Thomas Earle had not only gone astray, but had made a motion to “address the King, through me, to continue the present charter, which begot a doubt whether I might not favour such a design”. But the arch-traitor - of all unlikely men -


was Sir Richard Hart, “who as you will see by your list [clearly Knight's list] was depended on”, but who insinuated that the Quo Warranto was without the King's privity and approbation. The Duke concluded by suggesting that the Government should send down a threatening letter, when the Mayor would call another Council; adding that the present defeat was “partly due to jealousy of Sir John Knight having too great a sway if the surrender took place”. His grace's advice was probably followed, but on April 28th, when the Council re-assembled, it was resolved to put in an answer to the writ in defence of the city's rights. The step seems to have caused a little perplexity at Court, and a delay of some weeks followed; but in June the Attorney-General, in a letter to the Town Clerk, stated that he not been hasty in pursuing the business, but was now informed that his delay had become a matter of triumph in Bristol, where it was supposed he was afraid to proceed. “Deceive not yourselves. ... I entertain no other thought but of proceeding according to a strict course of law”. The Corporation, he added, would be called to account before the judges' next term. The chief charges to be answered were stated to be the excessive number of the Common Council and the neglect to hold gaol deliveries, “divers other miscarriages and forfeitures” being hinted at in terrorem. The Council directed the Town Clerk to deny the charge of “triumphing”, and to ask that the suit might not be hurried on, it being impossible to make a just defence in so short a time.

The threatened attack did not prevent the civic rulers from continuing their quarrels. The election of Sir Thomas Earle as an Alderman by the ultra-loyalists was recorded at page 402. His defection on the surrender question aroused the wrath of the party, and on August 23rd the Mayor and five Aldermen declared his election void, and chose the Mayor to fill the seat to which Day and Earle had been successively appointed! The matter, however, was not even yet settled (see August, 1689).

The record of corporate difficulties must be interrupted in order to give a brief account of a conspiracy already alluded to in dealing with Roe, the Swordbearer. After the King's triumph over the Whigs in 1681, a number of hot-headed men in London, Bristol and other towns began secretly to discuss schemes of an armed insurrection, with a view of excluding the Duke of York from the throne. From numerous documents in the State Papers, it appears


that upwards of a hundred Bristolians were known or supposed to be concerned in this project, amongst whom Colonel John Rumsey, or Romsey, who had been Collector of Customs, Roe, Nathaniel Wade, his brother William Wade, and his brother-in-law Joseph Whetham, James Holloway, draper (the “undertaker” of the weaving scheme), Joseph Jackson, merchant, Ichabod Chauncy, doctor, Thomas Tyley, mercer, and Thomas Scrope, merchant (son of Governor Scrope), were alleged to have been the most conspicuous. The confederates met nightly, sometimes to the number of seventy, first at the White Hart, and later at the Horse Shoe inns; while another party gathered at the Mermaid. Emissaries of the “Kings Head club” in London often came down to promote the design, and Roe was frequently sent to town for the same purpose. Risings were planned to take place in November, 1682, in nearly all the large towns in the country, and the local plotters believed that Bristol could be easily surprised and seized by 360 men, of whom 200 were residents and 150 were to be stealthily brought up from Taunton. Some of the more desperate and fanatical of the conspirators in London seem to have doubted the feasibility of projects of this character, and, unknown to the general confederacy, hatched a plot of their own in March, 1683, for the purpose of assassinating the King and the Duke of York at a place known as the Rye House, between London and Newmarket. This gang, like nearly all such gangs, soon produced a traitor. In May the detection of the miscreants led to the immediate disclosure of the original design, and the Government, with cruel ingenuity, confounded the schemes together, insisting that all who had joined in the first were accessories to the intended butchery. Colonel Rumsey, an unmitigated villain, to save himself, surrendered, and became an informer. Whetham, captured in London, was carried before the Privy Council, where he insisted that the Bristol club was simply formed to promote Sir Robert Atkyns' election as member of Parliament, and, though committed for trial, he was liberated on bail. Roe and others fled, including Holloway, whose sad fate has yet to be told. Sir Robert Cann, on June 2nd, wrote to the Duke of Beaufort alleging that Robert Henley, who was still unpardoned for his Parliamentary candidature, was Wade's “great correspondent”, evidently hoping that this would justify a prosecution, adding that Dr. Chauncy was “the bellwether of all the phanatickes here”. The Mayor informed Secretary


Jenkins that four members of the Council, named Hine, Watts, Corsley and Hale, had been committed to the sessions for their complicity in the plot, and asked how they should be disposed of. Helher, the attorney, denounced Dr. Chauncy to the same Minister as a pestilent incendiary, adding that all the seditious practices against the King were hatched in the meeting-house that the doctor had built in Castle Green. Chauncy, after being four months in gaol, was banished. Owing to the loss of the sessions book, the fate of the others arrested in Bristol is unknown.

The discovery of the Rye House plot afforded the Council an opportunity for beseeching the good graces of the King of which they did not fail to profit. On September 18th a congratulatory address to His Majesty was adopted, expressive of joy on his escape from a damnable conspiracy; but the compliments were out a shoeing horn to prayers on a more interesting subject. “We humbly hope that your Majesty has been pleased to accept our constant care of preserving the government of this city in loyal hands . . . not depending upon our own judgment . . . but electing the Mayor last year by the intimation of the Duke of Beaufort, and this year our Mayor and Sheriffs from your sacred Majesty's directions”. It was then humbly begged that the privileges of the city would be confirmed, a pledge being given to govern according to the King's directions. The address was forthwith presented by the retiring Mayor, who, a week later, “read the very words uttered by his Majesty” on the occasion. These gracious expressions were not recorded in the minutes, but the Duke of Beaufort professes to repeat them in a letter to Secretary Jenkins. His Majesty said he intended to demand no more than the Corporation had offered - namely, to have the governing power secured to himself. When that was done the charters should be confirmed as was desired. This, added the Duke, ought to force on a surrender; if the Council refuse, the Quo Warranto should be vigorously prosecuted.

The year was full of surprises. It will be seen that the King (who had rejected a whining suggestion for re-election sent up by Eston) had commanded the elevation to the civic chair of the innkeeper, Ralph Olliffe, whose only claims to such an honour lay in his servility to the Government and his cruel treatment of Dissenters, though Bishop Mew, of Wells, extolled him to the King as “an excellent subject and a serviceable man”. On September 29th, Olliffe, then ill, was carried to the Guildhall in a sedan, to be sworn in; but


he died a few hours afterwards, to the dismay of his partisans, who hurriedly despatched a messenger to Court to receive fresh instructions. In a letter of October 6th the King, regretting the death of the “worthy magistrate”, stated that, on the advice of the Duke of Beaufort (who had really recommended that the city should be left without a Mayor for a while, to keep the Council in awe), he thought fit to recommend William Clutterbuck for the vacant office, in order to avoid the heats of an open election, and significantly reminded the Council of their late promise to obey his instructions. The mandate elicited “hearty thanks”, and was of course complied with.

The new Mayor, assisted by a committee, now addressed the Attorney-General, as the King had suggested, begging that he would not proceed with the Quo Warranto, and promised him, with a just estimate of his character, “returns suitable to your quality and pains” on a favourable reply. Sir Robert Sawyer responded on October 25th, promising his good offices, but clearly intimating that the Council must surrender at discretion, “As you express readiness to comply with what may be necessary, I nave sent you an instrument, which must be executed by you before the King can proceed in regulating the government of the city”. The “instrument” contained a confession of the offences mentioned in Sawyer's previous letter, an offer to surrender all the liberties and franchises conceded by the charters, and a prayer that the King would grant such privileges as he might think conducive to good government. An appeal to the royal minions then acting as judges being obviously hopeless, the humiliating document was executed on October 31st, and the Town Clerk was sent with it to London to plead for favourable terms. He had scarcely arrived there before he discovered that much pecuniary lubrication would be needed “to make things pleasant”. The Lord Keeper and Secretary Jenkins had been already oiled, the first with wine costing £42, and the latter with “40 dozen mark quarts” of the same liquor, costing £50 13s. 11d. The Town Clerk had provided himself with a hamper of wine for the Secretary's secretary, but that worthy declined the gift, with a hint that a handier present would be quite acceptable. “Though wine will not go down with some”, wrote Mr. Romsey to the Mayor, “yet I perceive that money will with all, for the officers through which the patent has to pass have taken every occasion to speak of Bristol as the most opulent wealthy place in England, and that bounty


was expected. Nay, they made a sort of comparison of it to the East India Company”. (out of which they had extorted enormous gratuities.) The unhappy official, “sick of this place”, asks as to what shall be done with Jenkins, who, in spite of the wine, was causing things “to stick”, and concludes by requesting more money. Romsey, after many weeks' negotiations, obtained some slight concessions, the Corporation, for instance, being permitted to appoint Town Clerks, subject to the King's approval. A request for additional fairs was also granted, but a prayer for the Rangership of Kingswood was rejected. Doubtless for the purpose of extracting more money, no real progress was made until far into the following year, the King keeping the city in his own hands until June 2nd, 1684, when the new charter was executed. The instrument reserved to the Crown the right to annul the election of any civic official and to nominate his successor, the chief object being to secure Sheriffs who could be relied upon to pack juries, and to return members of Parliament of approved Court principles. The safeguards of absolute government seemed thus complete. Apparently at the request of the Corporation, the charter empowered the Council to impose a fine of £500 on any one refusing to serve as Mayor, Alderman, Sheriff or Councillor, and to imprison the recusant until the fine was paid. The affair entailed an outlay of £742 13s. 6d. exclusive of the wine presents.

The first mention of a local glass grinder occurs this year, when a man was admitted a freeman, on his undertaking to take a City schoolboy as an apprentice without the usual premium of £7. (The first glass maker does not appear upon the roll until 1690.) On the same day a vote of £20 was passed for the redemption of one Captain Johnson, who had rendered the Corporation services, but had been captured and enslaved by the Algerines.

An amusing account of Sir Robert Cann, a gentleman now well known to the reader, is given in the reminiscences of Roger North, and must refer to about this date. The cynical narrator states that soon after his brother Dudley, the eminent merchant, returned from Turkey, which was in 1680, he made the acquaintance of Sir Robert's daughter, the rich widow of a knight named Gunning (of Rood Ashton, a descendant of the Bristol Gonnings). The lady looked on him favourably, but her father was opposed to the match, and declined to entertain the suitor's proposals until he had acquired such an estate in land as would provide a fitting


jointure for the lady. Dudley, in reply, offered to settle £20,000 upon her, but Sir Robert curtly responded:- “My answer to your first letter is an answer to your second”. Dudley, equally laconic, retorted:- “I see you like neither me nor my business”. After some time, however, Cann yielded to the coaxing of his daughter; North settled his property on his intended wife; and the wedding took place, but not before the bride had thrown the marriage settlement into the fire. The old baronet eventually became proud of his son-in-law, who, when he came to Bristol, “to humour”, says the bitter storyteller, “the vanity of that city and people”, put himself into a splendid equipage; and the old man often said to him, “Come, son, let us go out and shine”, by which he meant a promenade in the streets, attended by six footmen in rich liveries.

The elder Sir John Knight, after a long and active career, died in December, 1683, aged 71, and the difficulty in distinguishing between him and his less reputable namesake henceforth disappears. The latter, as has been previously stated, spent several years in the West Indies, and he appears to have thought that his services to the Court in procuring the surrender of the city franchises entitled him to no less a reward than the governorship of the Leeward Islands, then held by Sir William Stapleton. That he applied to the King for this lucrative post is stated by himself in a letter amongst the State Papers, and he adds, what is by no means unlikely, that His Majesty had given him hopes of the appointment. The Ministry, however, effectually remonstrated, and the disappointed suitor returned to Bristol, and betook himself to bullying his colleagues in the Council. One of them, Edward Feilding, who styles himself an old Cavalier, appealed to Secretary Jenkins on January 31st, 1684. Observing that Knight had been more early “ dignified” than his actions or estate deserved, the writer continues:- “But his dignity would not satisfy his ambition without Sir William Stapleton's place to maintain it. He has magnified his actions to get a place of profit for himself, for which he has trampled upon many loyal subjects of good estate . . . and publicly preaches against the old suffering Cavaliers. In December last, when he missed his expectation of being generalissimo of the Caribbees, he hasted to this city to set himself up for a parliament man, promising some and threatening others, and putting the city in a ferment”. Mr. Feilding thinks it his duty to report this, “which has lost the King 100 for one”. On February


4th, the Secretary received another account of Knight's doings from one John Haris, who alleged that Sir John intended to get John Romsey re-appointed Town Clerk “that they might govern the city joyntly. . . . The way that things are now managed gives great discontent to the loyal, finding they are to be governed by these two proud hot-headed gentlemen, whose dependence is on the Duke of Beaufort”. Soon after, the authorities of the Leeward Islands, greatly disturbed by reports that Knight would be sent out to govern them, sent home urgent appeals against the nomination of a man “who is well known here”, and whose inexperience and self-interest would be injurious to both the King and the colonies. Finally, Sir William Stapleton must have forwarded a scathing account of Knight's conduct whilst at the islands, for Sir John petitioned the Privy Council to allow him “to vindicate his reputation from the scandalous libels”. A committee was appointed for that purpose, but there is no further mention of the subject in the minutes of the Government. But in the late Mr. Sholto Hare's collection is a graphic letter from Sir William Stapleton to Sir Robert Southwell, of Kingsweston, dated 7th March, 1684, in which he refers to the intrigues of the “Bristol heroe” whilst at Montserrat, and to his talent for noise and clamour. “There is nothing I abhor more than to speak behind any man's back, yet such is his rude behaviour and insolence that I cannot forbear to say somewhat of the man who is so much hated by all men here. ... I understand his grace the Duke of Beaufort is this heroe's patron, but I am confident if his grace knew him, he would never admit him in the commission of deputy-lieutenants or militia, unless it were purely against the quaquers, that he knows will not strike”.

In the first week of May, 1684, the civic authorities received a horrible consignment from London - the head and dismembered body of James Holloway, executed there on April 30th - accompanied by an order from the Government for the exhibition of the ghastly fragments over the principal city gates. The hapless “undertaker” of the corporate weaving scheme was treated with exceptional barbarity by the King's advisers. According to his confession, printed in the State Trials, he had conceived a project for wresting the linen trade from French hands by producing the fabrics at home, and had gone to Westminster to solicit the support of leading statesmen, in which he had met with some success, when, during the Popish Plot mania, he was induced to join


in the conspiracy for excluding the Duke of York from the throne. On the discovery of the Rye House Plot, in which he was not concerned, he absconded, and, as he did not surrender under the royal proclamation, through fear of arrest by some of his creditors, he was outlawed. After wandering about the country for some weeks, disguised as a seller of wood, he succeeded in hiring a boat of ten tons burden in Bristol, whence he sailed to France, and eventually to the West Indies, where he employed a factor to collect various debts due to him. This the scoundrel did, but appropriated the money himself, and betrayed his employer to the authorities. On being brought to London Holloway sued piteously for pardon, but his confession was unsatisfactory to the Government, since it contained no evidence against any of the men that the authorities sought to wreak vengeance upon. No trial took place, and the unhappy man was ordered to be executed on his outlawry.

During the nine months that elapsed between the surrender of the old charters and the coming into force of their debased substitute, the functions of the Common Council were totally suspended, the negotiations with the Court being left in the hands of the King's nominee, the Mayor. Before the Chamber was permitted to resume its duties, a body of royal Commissioners, consisting of the Marquis of Worcester, Sir John Smyth, and others, held a sitting on July 10th, 1684, to administer the oath of allegiance and other tests of devotion, and were entertained at the city's expense by Sir Robert Cann, the outlay being £138. The first meeting for business under the new dispensation took place on July 22nd, when the roll shows the changes that had been effected. Sir Thomas Earle had been removed from the aldermanic body, and William Hayman had been nominated in his room by the King, who also appointed the Mayor in the place of old Sir John Knight. Nineteen Councillors, including Thomas Day and Edward Feilding, had been displaced, and only sixteen of the old body retained their seats, new men being brought in to complete a Chamber numbering 43, as of old. Two new members, William Merrick and Richard Gibbons, prayed earnestly, but vainly, to be excused. Thanks were voted to the Lord Keeper, the Duke of Beaufort and Secretary Jenkins for the great favour they had conferred on the city in furthering the new charter; but even the well-manipulated Council showed a spark of independence. Lord Guildford had “thought fit to request” the Chamber to confer the two


city lectureship upon Mr. Gaskarth, lately appointed vicar of St Nicholas', on the ground of the small income of the living; but as a respected clergyman, Mr. Chetwyn, already held one lectureship, the Council tacitly refused to displace him, and conferred the other upon the Lord Keeper's nominee.

The harrying of Dissenters had gone on almost uninterruptedly from the period at which it was last mentioned, and was continued throughout 1684. The Sheriffs nominated by the King sought to outrival their predecessors in severity; and the Quakers, in a petition to His Majesty, made a piteous appeal for 120 of their sect immured in Newgate and Bridewell, many for “near two years”, while greater oppression was threatened. To give an instance of the treatment of others, the Mayor on August 23rd paid into Court £42 10s., money levied on Michael Pope and others, convicted of attending worship in Lewin's Mead Chapel, one-third of the total amount being due to the King. Distresses for the recovery of similar fines were of constant occurrence, three successive distraints being levied on the goods of Mr. Burges, draper, Wine Street. At this period, the ministers of two chapels had been eighteen months in Gloucester gaol, and there were numberless commitments of laymen. On the accession of James II., in 1685, about 1,600 Quakers were liberated from prisons, of whom about a hundred were Bristolians; but no lenity was shown to other Dissenters. In the following November, Mr. Fownes, minister of Broadmead Chapel, died in Gloucester gaol, where he had been incarcerated for nearly three years.

An example of the manner in which the purified Corporation dealt with their Church patronage occurred in September, 1684, when Richard Roberts was presented to Christ Church, vacant by the death of the venerable Mr. Standfast. In the following month Mr. Roberts petitioned the Chamber, alleging that his new parishioners were “litigious”, and it was resolved to defend him at the city's charge. The simple fact was, that Roberts was already incumbent of All Saints', and wished to enjoy the other living whilst evading the services due to the parish. The scandal continued for a year and a half, when the Christ Church vestry again threatened resistance, and the parson renewed his brazen request for corporate support, although he had been unable to get a dispensation to hold the two incumbencies. The Council, still anxious for his welfare,


then presented Emanuel Heath to Christ Church, “yet not to injure the right of Mr. Roberts if he can obtain a dispensation”. Heath - who was also incumbent of St. Augustine's - retained the vicarage until his death, in Jamaica, in 1693. He had obtained a royal warrant to absent himself from his livings for seven years!

Attempts to obtain the freedom by trickery were, when discovered, dealt with sharply. A publican named Newport, having, as he pretended, served an apprenticeship to a freeman, got his name placed on the roll, and set up in business. But the authorities, on discovering that his servitude had been a mere sham, disfranchised him, and his shop windows were nailed down. The offender petitioned for pardon in October, and was re-admitted on paying a fine of £40. Another victualler, though a “foreigner”, was granted the freedom about the same time, on payment of £8. Shortly afterwards, a new industry - the manufacture of tin plates - was introduced into the city by one John Combs, who became a freeman on paying £4.

Sir John Knight was in such dudgeon at the Government's refusal to reward him for his recent exertions that he resolved on retiring from the Corporation. He accordingly petitioned the Privy Council in July, praying for his discharge, “as the only expedient to secure him from envy and ruin”. The King's acquiescence was, after some delay, transmitted to the Duke of Beaufort, as the general controller of corporate affairs, and at a Common Council held on January 15th, 1685, a letter was read from his grace, stating that Knight had been dismissed, though the King was well satisfied with him, and exhorting the Council to elect a man equally zealous for the King, Church and State. The vacancy was filled by the election of Robert Brookhouse, who received a warning that his non-acceptance of the place would entail a fine of £200, and imprisonment till it was paid. Brookhouse, however, took his seat on the same day, but speedily tired of his dignity, which he was allowed to relinquish six months' later on payment of £100.

Henry Gough, a former Sheriff, but ejected from the Chamber by the new charter, was at the above meeting voted a pension of £20 a year, “considering his condition”. After his death, in 1694, his widow received a pension of £10 for life.

The death of Charles II. on February 6th, 1685, does not appear to have been known in Bristol until the morning of


the 8th. Although the day was a Sunday, it was resolved to make the customary proclamation of his successor in the afternoon, and the ceremony is said to have taken place “with the greatest joy and acclamation”. From respect for the Lord's Day, the expenses were limited to 12s. 6d. A few days later, the Council adopted a congratulatory address to the new sovereign, redolent of the servility due from courtly nominees. The death of a King of blessed memory would have been, it was alleged, insupportable, had not his successor's virtues, sagacity and affection alleviated grief. Entire confidence of happiness was placed in His Majesty's government, and pledges were given that the dutiful addressers would stand by him with their lives and fortunes. The Mayor (William Hayman), whose affection for the Crown and its ministers underwent some modification before he quitted office, presented the fulsome document at Whitehall, and received the honour of knighthood. The Council then felt unhappy at being without a portrait of a beneficent monarch, and one John Hoskins was paid £10 6s. for a work to supply the desideratum. (A few years later the face of this picture was covered with paint, and the figure converted into a portrait of Charles II.) The coronation of the new sovereigns, in April, was celebrated with great rejoicing. Salutes were fired from 114 great guns in the Marsh. Two hogsheads of claret (costing £11 5s.) “caused the four conduits to run with wine”. The corporate body proceeded in great pomp to “hear a sermon” in the cathedral, and afterwards dined at the Three Tuns tavern - each guest being required to pay for his dinner. In the evening an enormous bonfire blazed at the High Cross, and another before the Mayor's windows. An item of £6 16s., paid by the Chamberlain “for beer, ale and cider, for the Mayor and Aldermen”, may be charitably supposed to misrepresent the number of consumers of several hundred gallons.

A general election took place in the spring, the proceedings in Bristol occurring on March 30th. The Duke of Beaufort, whose watchful supervision of the Corporation never relaxed, forwarded a sort of peremptory recommendation of Sir John Churchill as a fitting member, and the obsequious Council, on the 27th, resolved, “every one of us called over by name, to improve their interest to elect” his grace's nominee, who was accordingly chosen, in company with another admirer of passive obedience, Sir Richard Crump. On the demand of the King to the House of


Commons for money to pay off his late brother's debts, Dudley North, Sir Robert Cann's son-in-law, and an able financier, was instructed to devise ways and means; and in due course proposed an increase, for eight years, of the duties on sugar and tobacco. The mercantile interest was incensed by the proposal, and nowhere was the wrath greater than in Bristol. The Corporation forwarded urgent appeals to the city members to resist a scheme so prejudicial to local commerce with Virginia and the West Indies; and a deputation of merchants was admitted to the bar of the Commons, to represent the injuries that the scheme would inflict upon the port. It was, however, adopted. Churchill died in the following November, necessitating elections both for the vacant seat and the Recordership. As regarded the former, the Duke of Beaufort, in his wonted style, requested the choice of Mr. Romsey, the Town Clerk, but, to his great irritation, the demand was not responded to; and Sir Richard Hart, who had sued for his grace's patronage and had met with a flat refusal, was elected without opposition. The Duke's anger was somewhat mitigated, however, by the obedience of the Council to another of his behests - the appointment of Roger North to the office of Recorder.

Owing to the penury of its income, the bishopric of Bristol was a dignity which few clergymen of the Stewart period were likely to accept save as a stepping-stone to a better position. In August, 1684, Dr. John Lake was consecrated in the place of Dr. Goulston, deceased; but before a twelvemonth had expired the new prelate was earnestly praying for Archbishop Sancroft's help in his suit for the vacant see of Chichester, promising gratitude if delivered from “the impertinences and insolences of our Dean” (the incendiary Thompson). Lake's prayers being heard, Sir Jonathan Trelawny was nominated to Bristol in September, 1685, whereupon the baronet (who had been greedily craving for a richer see, begging the King to have “compassion on his slave”) informed Bishop Turner, of Ely, that his preferment was too mean to give a man credit for the large sum needful to enter upon it (Tanner's MSS.). But, as will be shown hereafter, Trelawny was a man eager to win preferment by the ignoblest means. In spite of his cloth, he took the field as a soldier in the campaign about to be described. Lake and Trelawny were afterwards two of the historical seven Bishops.

A narrative of the Monmouth Rebellion, except so


far as it affected Bristol, is not within the scope of this work. It will suffice to say that the presumptuous youth landed at Lyme on June 11th, accompanied amongst others by Nathaniel Wade, a Bristol barrister, Thomas Tyley, a Bristol mercer, and John Roe, the ex-Swordbearer, all of whom had been charged with complicity in the Rye House Plot. The “Protestant Duke” was hailed with extraordinary enthusiasm by the peasantry, who flocked to his standard, armed with scythes and pitchforks; and a week after his arrival Monmouth made a triumphal entry into Taunton, where he was proclaimed King amidst the plaudits of the townspeople. Wade was at this time major of the forces, and Tyley was one of the captains. The Government were meanwhile on the alert. In order to secure Cornwall, the King sent the Rev. Sir Jonathan Trelawny down to that county to put it in a posture of defence; and that bellicose cleric boasted afterwards to Lord Sunderland that he raised the militia, travelled night and day through every district to review the regiments, gathered a store of arms, and disposed the troops where they were most likely to be useful; for all which martial deeds he was rewarded in September with the Bishopric of Bristol. By the King's orders, again, the Duke of Beaufort entered this city on the 16th June to secure it against attack, and the trained bands that mustered at his command were afterwards supplemented by some companies of regular troops. The Duke proceeded in his usual high-handed fashion, ordering the houses of Dissenters to be searched for arms, shipping off about sixty citizens suspected of disloyalty to Gloucester gaol, and crowding the city prisons with supposed malcontents, all the arrests being made without legal authority. To return to the Pretender, Monmouth marched from Taunton to Bridgwater, where he was welcomed by the Mayor and some members of the Corporation, and was again proclaimed King. The following days found him at Glastonbury, Wells, and Shepton Mallet, his so-called army being everywhere joined by zealous volunteers. It was now determined to attempt the capture of Bristol, where Wade and Roe assured him of thousands of sympathisers, whom the disaffected trained bands would neither be willing nor able to keep down. The southern walls of the city being still formidable, it was resolved to make the attack from Gloucestershire, and for this purpose a portion of the rebels was sent forward to Keynsham to repair the


bridge there (broken down by the King's troops), whilst the main body halted at Pensford on June 24th. The night of that day was long remembered in Bristol. The citizens had been informed of Monmouth's movements, and many doubtless hoped, and many feared, that the defences would be attacked before morning. The whole population was afoot, eagerly on the watch for events. Suddenly a ship lying at the Quay burst into flames, either from accident or design, though the cause was never discovered. The popular commotion then became intensified, and seditious cries were raised in the darkness. If, as was afterwards alleged, the fire was the work of Monmouth's partisans, in the hope that the trained bands would be employed in saving the fleet in the harbour from the flames, and that a way would thus be opened to the rebels, the scheme was a failure. The Duke of Beaufort, whose forces were drawn up outside Redcliff Gate, not only refused help to quench the fire, but openly declared that if any insurrection were attempted amongst the inhabitants he would burn the city about their ears. Monmouth, though informed of the favourable incident, adhered to a previous plan, and ordered an advance on Keynsham at sunrise. On arriving there the bridge was found practicable, but in spite of the shortness of the march the Pretender resolved to proceed no further until the evening. While his forces were idling about the village a small body of horse guards dashed into the place, scattered two troops of Monmouth's badly-mounted horsemen, and retired uninjured, after causing a general panic. This trivial skirmish led to the abandonment of the design on Bristol, and practically to the ruin of the enterprise. It is needless to follow Monmouth during his subsequent inglorious retreat, or to the combat on Sedgemoor, on July 6th, where his untrained followers fought bravely but hopelessly in his cause. The news of his defeat reached Bristol on the same day, and caused much rejoicing, though an annalist states that several more suspected persons were committed to prison. The Duke of Beaufort had by this time upwards of forty companies of militia and about seven troops of cavalry under his command, but most of the men were soon afterwards disbanded. His grace then departed for Court, where the King warmly thanked him for his services, and in December he was granted a pension of £600 a year for so long as he might hold a post in the royal household. During his stay in Bristol he was a


costly guest to the Corporation, for besides various entertainments, he ordered the construction of military works, costing about £500, and left the Council to discharge the outlay. The Chamber tried to recover the money by levying a rate, which the inhabitants refused to pay. Subscriptions were next appealed for without result. Eventually the liability was added to an already overwhelming burden of debt. Whilst the Corporation was struggling with its pecuniary embarrassments a brilliant thought occurred to Mr. Romsey, the Town Clerk, and was hailed with delight by the Council. Admission into that body could be gained only by taking the test oaths; but Quakers were forbidden by their consciences to take any oath at all. Nothing, therefore, was easier than to elect prosperous Quakers as Councillors, and then to fine them heavily for refusing to accept office. The first victim was Thomas Speed, a highly esteemed merchant, who while a young man had undertaken the burden of nurturing and bringing up the very numerous orphans of “the State Martyr”, Yeamans. A fine of £200 having been exacted from him, several other Quakers were successively elected in his place, and fined according to what was deemed the measure of their ability for refusing it. Thomas Callowhill paid £150; Thomas Jordan, £100; Charles Jones, £50; James Freeman, £50; and Thomas Goldney, £200. Richard Bickham was mulcted in £500, and subsequently in £300 more for refusing to be sworn as Sheriff; but these sums were not recovered. The Town Clerk complained, in June, 1686, that although his device had proved very profitable, the Council still owed him a large sum for his costs in obtaining the charter. As no further payment was made to him by the Chamber, though a vote of £200 was passed, it is probable that he was allowed to extract his debt out of the pockets of Bickham. Chief Justice Jeffreys' “Bloody Assize”, specially ordered by James II. to glut his vengeance on the miserable peasantry that had risen for “King Monmouth”, was fixed for September. Kirke's soldiery, quartered in Somerset, had already hanged or slaughtered a great number of captured rebels, but the Government complained, not of the Colonel's atrocities, but of his interested lenity towards delinquents able to bribe him, and Jeffreys was sent down with a commission both of a judge and a general in the army, to fall on all ranks without mercy. The assizes began at Winchester, where the proceedings thrilled the nation with


horror. Jeffreys then proceeded to Dorchester, where he shortened his labours by letting it be known that a prisoner's only chance of avoiding the gallows lay in pleading guilty. In the result, seventy-four men were sentenced to be hanged without delay. The rebellion had touched only a fringe of Devon, and the convictions at Exeter were comparatively few. But wide districts of Somerset had shown enthusiasm for the Pretender, and Jeffreys, whose ferocity was aggravated by a painful disease and by inordinate drinking to relieve his anguish, literally revelled in his sanguinary work. Altogether, 233 prisoners were hanged, quartered, and gibbeted in various parts of the county, cross-roads, market-places, and village-greens being rendered pestiferous by decomposing corpses. Twelve unhappy men were executed at Pensford, and eleven at Keynsham. In addition to those done to death in the various counties, about 860 persons were sentenced to a fate hardly less cruel, - transportation as slaves to the West Indies, - while a still greater number, for the utterance of mere idle words, were sentenced to repeated scourgings and long terms of imprisonment. On finishing business at Taunton, on September 19th, the judge reported progress to the King in a letter not hitherto published. His Majesty, it appears, had already sent instructions “about the rebels designed for transportation”, and Jeffreys ventured to recommend care in handing them over to private persons, - that is, to purchasers, - for there was a great demand for them. They were worth, he said, £10 if not £15 a head. (The King took the hint, and handed over the convicts to the Queen, the maids of honour, and favourite courtiers.) The writer concluded by declaring that he would rather die than omit any opportunity of showing his loyalty, and by making two remarks of local interest. He “purposed for Bristol on Monday and thence to Wells”. And he had “ordered Wade hence on Monday”. The person thus referred to was Nathaniel Wade, who had been captured after Sedgemoor, and who, it is only too probable, had compounded for his own crimes by offering evidence against men far less culpable. Immediately after his arrest, Wade had made a brief “confession”, which was sent to the King, and His Majesty, hoping for information that would inculpate peers as well as peasants, ordered him to be brought near the Court, where he was required to save his own neck by a full disclosure of the details of the rebellion and of those engaged in it. He accordingly disburdened himself in two


lengthy documents of all he knew, or said he knew, of the preparations made in Holland and of the events in England. But the papers, which are in the British Museum, contain nothing that the Government were not already acquainted with. As his statements were not made public, and as the King, through some caprice, took him into special favour in a way that will presently be described, the odious name of “Traitor Wade”, by which he was popularly known to the end of his life, is reasonably explained.

Jeffreys, boasting that he had already hanged more traitors than all his predecessors put together, arrived at Bristol on Monday, September 21st, and took up his quarters at the Town Clerk's mansion. After refreshing himself, he proceeded to the Guildhall, where a grand jury of forty-one gentlemen were duly empanelled, to whom he delivered a characteristic charge. Beginning with a scoff at the splendour of his reception, he declared that he had not come to make set speeches, but to do the business of a gracious King, and after jeering at the influence which women were reported to exercise in civic affairs, he burst into a denunciation of the murder of Charles I., “the most blessed martyr after Jesus”, by order of rebels numbering forty-one - an allusion to the jury before him. This was followed by an eulogium on the blessed and merciful prince, the God on earth, whom he represented. Rebellion, he swore, was like the sin of witchcraft, and Bristol had too many rebels who had added to the ship's loading. “There was your Tylys, your Roes, and your Wades, scoundrel fellows, mere sons of dunghills”, and there were still more of the same breed; but he had brought a brush in his pocket, and he would sweep every man's door, great or small, wherever the dirt was sticking. The rebels without must have had encouragement from the rebels within. A ship had been fired as a signal, “and yet you are willing to believe it was an accident”. He then poured a torrent of invective on the moderate politicians nicknamed Trimmers, who he said were only cowardly and base-spirited Whigs, and stank worse than the worst dirt in the city, and yet the place had many of them. Then, after referring to the sink of Conventicles, he roared: “Come, come, gentlemen, to be plain with you, I find the dirt of the ditch is in your nostrils. This city, it seems, claims the privilege of hanging amongst themselves. I find you have more need of a Commission once a month”. The very magistrates were quarrelling amongst themselves, while cunning men


set them together by the ears and knocked their loggerheads together. “Yet they can agree for their interest, or if there be a kid in the case; for I hear the trade of kidnapping is of much request. They can discharge a felon or a traitor, provided they will go to Mr. Alderman's plantation at the West Indies. Come, come, I find you stink for want of rubbing”. The Dissenters fared well amongst these magistrates. If a Dissenter, three parts a rebel, is brought up to be fined, an Alderman says, he is a good man, and he is fined but 5s. Then comes up another, worse than the first, and another goodman Alderman says, he is an honest man, and he is fined half a crown, each justice playing knave in turn. After a reference to unseemly dissensions amongst the city clergy, and directions to all the constables to bring in presentments, Jeffreys closed his tirade by adjourning the court.

Doubtless to the cruel judge's vexation, the prisoners for trial were few in number. Thanks to the Duke of Beaufort's summary seizure of over a hundred suspected citizens on the first tidings of the rebellion, and to the awe inspired by his forces, no overt act amounting to treason is recorded by the annalists, and Jeffreys was unable to sentence more than six men to death, and three of them were reprieved. (The three executions took place on Redcliff Hill. About the same time, three rebels condemned at Wells were hanged at Bedminster; one of them, a Bristolian, declaring to the last that he had merely gone to have a sight of the rebel army.) Several prisoners charged with idle talk, and others for rough horse-play on Shrove Tuesday, were ordered to be severely lashed at the tail of a cart. Disgusted with the meagreness of the calendar, the Chief Justice again fell upon the Aldermen, whom he unreasonably suspected of disloyalty; and by the help of information from some local source, he was enabled for once to pose as an upright judge. Roger North, then Recorder, explains in his reminiscences that it had been customary for the Aldermen to transport reprieved felons to the West Indies, where they were sold as slaves. But this supply failing to satisfy greed, the justices arranged that when persons charged with crime were brought before them, some underlings of the Court, whispering the probability of hanging if the cases went to trial, advised the culprits to pray for transportation, as their only chance of escaping the gallows, a course which was generally adopted. The game thus bagged was appropriated by the magistrates in rotation - a squabble sometimes


arising as to who had the first claim - and the poor wretches were incontinently shipped off as marketable merchandise. This practice, adds North, had gone on for some years, and though Sir Robert Cann and other wealthy Aldermen refused their share of the spoil, they connived in the guilt. To return to the Guildhall, Sir William Hayman, the Mayor, arrayed in his gorgeous robes, was seated on the bench, he being, by an old and cherished privilege, named in the Royal Commission before the judges, when Jeffreys, to use one of his favourite expressions, gave his worship a lick with the rough side of his tongue. “Sir, Mr. Mayor, you I mean, kidnapper! and that old justice on the bench (Alderman Lawford), an old knave; he goes to the tavern, and for a pint of sack he will bind people servants to the Indies. A kidnapping knave! I will have his ears off before I go forth of town”. The furious judge next threw a paper to the Town Clerk, ordering him to read it, which was done. It appears to have given precise details as to the above practices, and doubtless referred to the man-stealing villainies that have been mentioned in previous pages. In one case the Mayor was charged with having sought to transport to Jamaica a man alleged to have picked a pocket. On this statement being read, Jeffreys, who was suspected of being inflamed with liquor, flew into a transport of rage, and again addressed the Mayor. “Kidnapper! Do you see the keeper of Newgate? If it were not in respect of the sword which is over your head, I would send you to Newgate, you kidnapping knave! You are worse than the pickpocket who stands at the bar. I hope you are a man of worth. I will make you pay sufficiently for it”. And thereupon he fined Hayman £1,000 “for suffering a boy committed to Bridewell to go beyond the sea”. The ordinary business then proceeded, but shortly before an adjournment for dinner the Chief Justice ordered the Mayor to enter the prisoners' dock, like a common felon, in order to plead guilty or not guilty. Hayman, dumbfoundered by this treatment, showing some hesitation, the furious judge bawled at him, stamping with fury, and called for his soldiers, in virtue of his commission as a general. The Mayor then submissively pleaded not guilty, and he was made to give security for his appearance in the afternoon, when he was given into the custody of the Sheriffs, to the infinite amazement of a crowded Court. “Had it not been in respect of the city”, vociferated Jeffreys, “I would have arraigned him, and hanged him, before I went forth, and


would have seen it done myself; a kidnapping knave!” Charges of kidnapping were then laid against Sir Robert Cann, Alderman Lawford, William Swymmer, John Napper and Robert Kirk, and they, with the Mayor, were ordered to find two sureties in £5,000 each to answer indictments in the Court of King's Bench.

Jeffreys did not let the day pass over without recounting his doughty deeds to Lord Sunderland, the King's favourite Minister. His missive, hitherto unknown to local readers, is amongst the State Papers. After the usual rhodomontade about his affection for his royal master, he declares Bristol to be a most factious city, worse even than Taunton. “But my lord, though harrassed with this day's fatigue & now mortified with a fit of the stone, I must beg leave to acquaint your lordship that I this day committed Mr. Mayor & some of his brethren the aldermen for kidnapping, & have sent my tipstaff for others equally concerned in that villany. I therefore beg your lordship will acquaint his Majesty that I humbly apprehend it infinitely for his service that he be not surprised into a pardon to any man, tho' he pretend much to loyalty, till I have the honour & happiness of kissing his royal hand. . . . My dear lord I will pawn my life, & that which is dearer to me, my loyalty, that Taunton & Bristol & the County of Somerset too, shall know their duty to God & their Prince before I leave them. I purpose to-morrow for Wells & in a few days don't despair to perfect the work I was sent about”. He concludes by recommending that the convicts for transportation should not be “disposed of” hastily, the applicants for them being “too impetuous”.

The incriminated magistrates were never brought to trial for the offences laid against them, and only one explanation of the fact can be offered. During his bloody campaign in the West, Jeffreys acquired what was then considered a great fortune by selling pardons to wealthy persons suspected of complicity in the rebellion. From Mr. Edmund Prideaux, son of a former Recorder of Bristol, he is known to have extorted £15,000, though that gentleman had not been in arms; and this infamy was only one of many. The prosecution of the Bristol Aldermen was adjourned on trivial pretexts from time to time, but they doubtless paid dearly for the favour. The charges were still hanging over their heads at the Revolution, three years later, when they were quashed by a general amnesty. The affair, however, was fatal to Sir Robert Cann, whose dignity had been


irreparably outraged. The worthy old baronet went up to London in great fear, and through the intervention of his influential son-in-law the charge against him was withdrawn; but the relief did little to revive his spirits. He had been accustomed, says Roger North, to drink sherry, morning, noon and night; but he now took an exclusive fancy for Sir Dudley's small beer, of which he drank extravagantly, and with wonderful pleasure, and was much concerned he had not found it out before. But Nature would not bear so great a change, and he died soon after his return to Bristol.

The only payments for the entertainment of Jeffreys in the civic accounts are 17s. for fruit, and 2s. 6d. for a couple of ducks. The Town Clerk is not likely to have feasted the judge at his own expense, and it is probable that Bickham, in this case also, was made to compensate Romsey. The sum of £42 17s. 10d. was paid by the Chamberlain “for hay, oats and beans for the judge's horses”. As Jeffreys was not forty-eight hours in the city, and the ordinary charge for horsekeep was only one shilling a day, the judicial retinue must have been enormous.

At the outbreak of the rebellion, the city had been placed under martial law by the Duke of Beaufort, and a return to ordinary government was long delayed. In the autumn a regiment of the line, under the command of Colonel Trelawny, brother of the Bishop, was quartered upon the inhabitants, and the troopers seem to have attempted to rival “Kirke's lambs” in insolence, rapacity and debauchery. Loud complaints were raised by the citizens, but the magistrates were impotent without the help of the Duke of Beaufort. Efforts were made to recover his favour by sending the Mayor to Badminton (at an expense of £10 for coach hire) to offer a cordial vote of thanks for his eminent services, and by presenting the freedom to the young Earl of Ossory, son-in-law to the Duke, the latter being styled in the Council's resolution “the protector and father of this city”. But when the Chamber followed up these flatteries by beseeching his grace for relief from the outrages daily committed by the soldiery, and praying that the expenses caused by the rebellion should be repaid by the Government, and the keys of the city Gates restored to the Corporation, the Duke penned an angry reply, refusing to consider the conduct of the troopers, and expressing wonder that a body which had not complied with his “just desires” at the recent Parliamentary election should


presume to ask for his services. He had not, he added, checked them enough, and this encouraged them to make “such frivolous complaints”; while to ask for the keys of the town when the King had forces in it was an unexampled impertinence. The regiment probably left in the following year for the memorable camp at Hounslow.

The new charter having granted to the Corporation a market for the sale of imported corn, the erection of a market-house at the lower end of the then existing Quay (near the west end of Thunderbolt Street) was begun towards the end of the year. The building, which cost nearly £700, was let in 1686 at the large rent of £140. An ordinance had been previously passed forbidding the landing or sale of imported grain at any place except this market, under pain of prosecution. This regulation aroused the ire of the burgesses of Tewkesbury, who claimed the right of importing goods into Bristol toll free, by virtue of a charter of Gilbert, Earl of Gloucester, confirmed by Edward II. in 1314. They had asserted this right in 1534, when the Corporation were compelled to relieve them of all tolls except key age. On the present occasion the dispute was left to the arbitration of the Duke of Beaufort, whose decision cannot be found. The market-house had but a brief existence. In July, 1690, when the rapidly increasing trade of the port demanded an extension of the Quay southwards, the Merchants' Society undertook to carry out the improvement, and to erect more cranes, providing the Corporation granted them a new lease for eighty years of the wharfage dues. To this the Council assented, and further permitted the Society to take down the whole or part of the market and to make use of the materials for the new works.

Local annalists unfortunately bestowed little attention on the religious topics of their time. Not only are they silent respecting the treatment of Nonconformists, but even the intense popular repugnance to Romanists is passed over without remark, though nowhere was Protestant feeling more acute than in Bristol. In 1682, a sessions grand jury incidentally remarked in a presentment that during the previous seven years only two Papist families had lived in the city, and one of them had departed. The jury were probably misinformed, adherents of the persecuted faith being then in too great dread of popular fury to make a public avowal of their opinions. At all events, in April, 1686, the inveterate tormentor of dissidents, Sir John Knight, got


scent of a small Romanist congregation assembling to hear Mass. Having forthwith reported his discovery, the Mayor, Sheriffs and officers hurried to the place, and secured the offending priest with some of his hearers, and the former was committed to prison for what was then a capital crime. The intelligence gave intense umbrage at Whitehall, where Mass was being celebrated daily before the King and Court, and the matter gave rise to a voluminous correspondence, preserved amongst the State Papers. On April (really May) 6th the Duke of Beaufort, who had received orders to overawe the city justices, informed Lord Sunderland that he had acquainted the Mayor and Aldermen of the King's resentment at their late proceedings and at Sir John Knight's scandalous behaviour, and had made them “a proper exhortation” for himself, which he trusted would make them sensible of their errors. The priest was doubtless liberated by the King's dispensing power, but the populace had become excited, and the affair gave rise to a serious disturbance, of which Lord Macaulay found some details in the despatches of the Dutch and Papal envoys in London, dated May 18th and 19th:- “The rabble, countenanced, it was said, by the magistrates, exhibited a profane and indecent pageant, in which the Virgin Mary was represented by a buffoon, and in which a mock host was carried in procession. Soldiers were called out to disperse the mob. The mob, then and ever since one of the fiercest in the kingdom, resisted. Blows were exchanged, and serious hurts inflicted”. Sir John Knight appears to have taken part in this business also, to the exasperation of the King, for he was forthwith arrested, and appeared before the Privy Council on June 5th, together with the Mayor and five of the Aldermen. Knight was then charged with “several misdemeanours”, and especially with going about the streets of Bristol flourishing a sword, “to the terror of the public”. It would appear from the minutes that the informer against him was Mr. Romsey, the Town Clerk, once, as has been shown, his closest ally; for the Ministry requested Romsey to give “further information”, and in the meantime ordered Knight to be prosecuted. The Mayor and Aldermen had next to bear the brunt of the royal displeasure. The King, who took part in the proceedings, reprehended them for the recent disturbances, which he asserted were due to their default or connivance, and ordered Lord Chancellor Jeffreys to issue commissions of the peace to as many gentry around Bristol as he thought fit, who were to be associated with


the Aldermen for the better government of the city. In the following week His Majesty ordered the ejection from the Common Council of Alderman Sir Richard Hart, M.P., the chief of the ultra-Royalists, but a man towards whom the Duke of Beaufort had a bitter antipathy. As for Sir John Knight, he was not easily daunted. In a letter written on June 7th to the Prime Minister, he stated that he was not afraid of finding an opportunity of showing his innocency, and being as acceptable to the King as ever he was. He moreover hoped to detect the contrivances that had blasted his former fair “carrecter”, and, supported by an upright heart, he would “bare” his misfortunes. He then insinuated at great length that the seizure of the priest by the justices arose from the encouragement and persuasions of others much more than from his own action, the real truth, he says, being that Bishop Trelawny's charge to his clergy had forced the Mayor to take measures “to prevent Mass”, whilst Romsey, though “he now puts another face on it”, made a similar pressing charge to the grand jury, his zeal against Popery being so great that he had challenged several persons who had raised reports of his Popish inclinations. Lord Sunderland maliciously communicated Sir John's reflections on Bishop Trelawny to the new-fledged prelate, whose terror at the prospect of falling under the King's displeasure evoked an unconscious but striking picture of his own true character and worth. He is, he wrote, unalterably fixed in his duty to His Majesty. He has forcibly required all his clergy to observe the King's commands. He not only “disrespected” Sir John Knight, and forbade the cathedral clergy to converse with him, but had collected the dangerous things he had said and done, and sent them up to the King. Before going to Bristol he had inquired of Lord Jeffreys as to the character of leading men, and on being told that the most trustworthy was the Town Clerk, he had called on the latter before waiting on the Mayor, which incensed the town. He further pleaded that he had preached in Bristol only once, when he delivered an old sermon preached before the late King, enforcing passive obedience to the Government. As for Knight's statement respecting his charge, it was said he had turned Papist before he got to the city; and being told, the day after his arrival, that Mass was being said at a certain house, which he believed was done to try him, he advised the Mayor to look after it, but the story proved false. Had it been true he would have informed


the King, and asked his pleasure, and would have stopped everything till that was known. And Sir Winston Churchill would attest how he had protected the Catholics in Dorsetshire. On the latter subject he dwells at some length in another letter, couched in still more despicable terms. Sunderland, it appears, had given him formal commands as to the language he was to use at his visitation, and he now reports the result. When some Romanists were presented at Cerne for recusancy, he ordered their discharge. A “very impudent” sermon, alleging danger from Popery, having been preached, he reprehended the preacher, and threatened him with suspension, telling the clergy that such discourses cast an imputation on the King, and warning them that he should suspend and silence any who indulged in such excesses. He would reside in Dorsetshire to set the clergy a good example, but his episcopal income was so miserably small that he could not do so without ruin. “But whenever the King shall please to give me a dignity of larger value, I will engage to render a proportionable service”. Returning to Sir John Knight, that worthy was prosecuted by the Attorney-General, and the indictment appears to have charged him with parading the streets, not with a sword but with a blunderbuss, to the terror of the lieges. His trial took place in December. According to Luttrell's Diary, the jury were Bristolians, “who knew him well, and he was acquitted, to the great disappointment of some persons who appeared very fierce against him”.

The debt of the Corporation, which had been increasing for several years, had in April reached nearly £16,000, and threatened to bring about a financial collapse. Retrenchment, however, was not in favour, and the Council resolved to dispose of part of the property in the Castle Precincts. The sales brought in about £3,000. But in the autumn, the necessity of economy having become urgent through an outlay to be recorded presently, a number of charges were abolished or pruned down. The expenditure for scavenging, £60 yearly, was stopped, and cleansing transferred to the parishes. The salary of the waits was withdrawn, the musicians being dismissed. The quarter sessions' dinners were given up, and the Mayor's salary “defalked” £52 on that account. The salaries of the civic officers, increased at the Restoration, were reduced to the previous scale. No more money was to be laid out in repairing the prisons, and the pitcher was not to be paid for mending the road on


St. Michael's Hill. Finally, the robes of the petty officials were docked of their fur, embroidery and velvet, which not only added to their cost but made their wearers undistinguishable to the vulgar from the members of the Council. It will be found hereafter that these cheeseparings did not suffice to restore an equilibrium.

A case of some local interest came before the Privy Council in May, arising out of a petition of Viscount Grandison and one Henry Howard. Lord Grandison alleged that he and his partner, in 1676, were induced to adventure in lead smelting by one Samuel Hutchinson who had obtained a patent for a new process, and that, after buying the patent, they set up works near Bristol at a cost of £4,000. Hutchinson had now set up works of his own near the same place, to their great injury. The Privy Council summoned the intruder, whose claim to work the patent was annulled. Another claimant, however, afterwards arose in the person of one John Hodges, who denied Lord Grandison's rights, when the latter, in another petition, averred that he had spent £10,000 in establishing his works, and Hodges' claim was dismissed. From various references to “the Cupoloes” in documents of about this date, it is probable that Grandison's works were near Nightingale Valley.

The Corporation received intimation early in August that the King had resolved upon a visit to the West of England, for the purpose of inspecting the battlefield of Sedgemoor, and immediate preparations were made for his entertainment in a manner calculated, it was hoped, to mitigate his displeasure. His Majesty arrived on the 25th, and was humbly welcomed by the Mayor and Common Council at Lawford's Gate, the precedents of the previous reign being exactly followed. The house of Sir William Hayman, in Small Street, had been made ready for the reception of the royal guest, and a grand banquet wound up the day's proceedings. On the 26th the King held a review in the Marsh of some troops that had encamped there. He afterwards rode up St. Michael's Hill, to view the remains of the defences from Royal Fort to Prior's Hill Fort, and returned by way of Newgate to his lodgings, where he “graciously touched” several persons afflicted with scrofula. An early dinner having been disposed of, he made an inspection of the strong city walls extending from Redcliff to Temple Gate, and thence took a long ride to survey the fort at Portishead. In the evening his Majesty knighted


William Merrick, one of the Sheriffs, and Mr Winter, Sheriff of Gloucestershire, and early next morning departed for Sedgemoor. His visit cost the Corporation, who could ill afford the outlay, £573, of which £146 went for wine and £63 for confectionery. The Mayor received 10s. for a lost silver fork - a rare luxury at that period.

A renewed quarrel between the civic body and the Bakers' Company broke out in the autumn, but the details are not recorded. In October the Council took the unprecedented course of conferring the freedom, for a trivial fine, on one John Gibbs, apparently a “foreigner”, on his undertaking to make good bread, and to hold aloof from the incorporated Company. A few weeks later, a fine of £40 was demanded, and paid, on the admission of an intruding ironmonger.

Towards the close of the year, Thomas Gale, who had been appointed Postmaster of Bristol in 1678, petitioned his superiors in London for an increase of his salary, then amounting to £50 a year. The managing official thereupon reported to Lord Rochester, Postmaster General, that Gale's stipend was very small, considering the expenses to which he was put, and his extraordinary labours, Bristol being a great city. On the other hand, the allowances that Gale had applied for on account of his outlay for candles, string, sealing wax and stationery, were stated to be for necessary incidents of his office, borne by all the provincial postmasters; and as a reasonable compromise it was recommended that the salary should be increased to £60 per annum. An order carrying out this suggestion was signed by Lord Rochester on December 13th. The entire in-door work of the local office appears to have been performed at that period by the unassisted efforts of the postmaster.

On January 18th, 1687, the Council, by electing Mr John Bubb to fill a vacant seat in the Chamber, unwittingly fell under the King's displeasure. Bubb claimed exemption from civic service, by virtue of his office of “Remitter of the Customs”, and having applied for royal protection, his Majesty sent down an order that his officer should be excused. The Council offered some resistance, and pointed out, in a letter to Lord Sunderland, that as Bubb's employment did not disturb him in his trade of shopkeeping, which he followed very considerably, the duties of Councillor could be no hindrance to him in serving the King. His Majesty, however, forwarded a peremptory reply. Being informed that the real object of the Council was to thrust Bubb into the costly office of Sheriff, he reiterated his former command


and required instant obedience. The Council of course submitted, but Mr. Bubb will turn up again. About the same time the King in Council, on the petition of Alderman John Moore, who pleaded great age and infirmities, relieved that gentleman of his office.

The salary of the Lord High Steward, the venerable Duke of Ormond, being several years in arrear, he was presented in March with a butt and two dozen bottles of “sherrysack”, which cost, including carriage, £43 16s. The Duke's estimation of “your excellent sherry” has been already mentioned, and the Council were doubtless anxious to maintain their good fame; yet the cost of the fine old wine was only 15s. per dozen. A few days later, the Mayor and other skilled members spent 4s. “at the Virgin tavern in tasting of wine against the coming of the judges” - a period which, from the large sums laid out for entertainments, must have been marked with copious libations.

During the assizes, Bishop Trelawny had an interview with the Council, from the report of which it appears that the corporate body had been again deprived of their seats in the cathedral. The Bishop proposed, in order that the Mayor and Common Council might not be debarred from coming into the choir during service, “no place being hitherto assigned them”, that they should have the free use of “the sub-dean's seat, and all on the right-hand side of it to the archdeacon's seat”; the sword to be laid on a cushion according to usage. To this the Council assented, and resolved to attend service on the following Sunday.

The spring of 1687 was marked by an astounding revulsion in the royal policy. For a quarter of a century the Dissenting bodies had undergone almost ceaseless persecution, and many hundreds of both sexes were, for conscience sake, lying in noisome gaols, when James II., assuming absolute power to deal with any statute, suspended the penal laws against all classes of Nonconformists, ordered the prison doors to be thrown open, and authorised every sect to hold services publicly. It is somewhat strange that the Broadmead Records contain scarcely any information as to this unexpected relief. A brief entry states that the congregation, which had been worshipping in a private house, at length “had peace”. The reparation of their chapel, reduced to a mere ruin, was at once set about, and services were resumed. The joy of the Dissenters at their emancipation was damped by the fact that they were classed in the Indulgence with the real objects of the King's solicitude -


the adherents of the Roman Church. In July, a Papal Nuncio was received at Court with extraordinary pomp, and subsequently made a tour through the country for the propagation of his faith. The date of his visit to Bristol is not recorded, but an annalist notes that he dined at the Three Tuns tavern in Corn Street. Protestant feeling was greatly irritated, and Guy Fawkes' Day was celebrated, by way of protest, at unusual expense, and with great popular enthusiasm.

The impoverished state of the civic exchequer led the Council, in July, to deal with a very ancient custom - the payment of wages to the Members of Parliament for the city. It was resolved that no salary to the members should thenceforth be paid by the Chamber, “but that it be paid as the law directs” - a direction that it would have been difficult to discover. Sir Richard Crump had received £17 13s. 4d. for the brief session of the previous year, but nothing was given to Sir Richard Hart. It will be seen, later on, that the above resolution was temporarily rescinded.

The King, in August, started on a “progress” of an unusually magnificent character. After visiting the south coast, he travelled to Bath, where, after a short sojourn, he left the Queen, paid a visit to Badminton, where he was sumptuously entertained, and then proceeded by Gloucester and Worcester to Chester. During his journey northward, the Corporation sent a deputation to the “Queen Regent” to pray her to accept an entertainment in Bristol, but her Majesty declined the compliment. The stay of the Court at Bath furnishes us with the last notice of the royal deer that once roamed so plentifully in Kingswood. On August 27th, the Board of Green Cloth sent a mandate to Mr. Creswick, of Hanham, the Ranger of the Chase (who had purchased Throckmorton's interest in January, 1682), complaining that its demand for five brace of bucks for the royal table had produced only a single head, and ordering that three bucks be at once delivered. Mr. Creswick had great difficulty in finding the animals, but sent in five deer at intervals during the following month. (How hopeless was the task of maintaining game there may be judged by the fact that upwards of seventy coal pits were being worked in various parts of the chase.) On the return of the King to Bath, another deputation from Bristol again proffered the hospitality of the Corporation, and upon its acceptance the Council, little foreseeing their contemptuous degradation in the near future, and recklessly indifferent to the city debts, resolved on


receiving their imperious master with even greater display than in the previous year. The royal guests were received at Lawford's Gate on September 12th with the accustomed ceremony, and were conducted to Mr. Lane's Great House at St. Augustine's Back, where a luxurious banquet was prepared for them, and where the Queen was presented with 100 “broad pieces” of gold. Their Majesties returned to Bath the same evening. Their brief visit cost the Corporation no less than £703.

The shocking condition of the city gaol at length shamed the Corporation into action. It was resolved in December, to build a new prison on a different site, and the subject was delegated to a committee to take the necessary steps, with further instructions “to put Bridewell into some proper posture”. Without further communication with the Council, the committee framed and promoted a Bill, empowering the Corporation to construct a new building, and to charge the cost upon the ratepayers; another Bill, creating a Court of Conscience for the recovery of petty debts being carried through Parliament simultaneously. The only mention of the matter in the records is a payment of £92 to Sir Richard Hart, “charges of procuring the Acts”. The cost of rebuilding Newgate was about £1,600.

Another of the arbitrary edicts of James II. was in preparation at the opening of 1688. On this occasion the blow fell upon the English Corporations. The Bristol Council, carefully selected from zealous Tories less than four years previously, had always shown obedience to the royal will; they had proved their loyalty during the Monmouth rebellion; and had on two occasions displayed extravagant liberality in doing his Majesty honour. Their latest tribute of devotion - a joyful procession to the cathedral on January 29th, to take part in the thanksgiving service ordered by the Government, on the Queen having declared herself to be with child - had not yet reached the royal ear, but might have been anticipated. But they, like their brethren in other towns, were Churchmen, naturally displeased by the illegal favours conceded to Papists and sectaries, and could not be relied upon to carry out the latest scheme devised by the King - the packing of a Parliament to promote Roman Catholic supremacy. On January 13th, 1688, by an Order in Council, Richard Lane, Mayor; Aldermen Swymmer, Hicks, Clutterbuck, Saunders, Combe, and Eston; the Sheriffe, eighteen Councillors, and Romsey, the Town Clerk, all zealous Tories, were dismissed


from the Corporation. This was followed on the 14th by a royal Mandate, addressed to the relics of the Chamber, ordering them to admit Thomas Day as Mayor; Michael Pope, Walter Stephens, William Jackson, William Browne, Humphrey Corsley, and Thomas Scrope as Aldermen; Thomas Saunders and John Hine as Sheriffs; and eighteen gentlemen, including Henry Gibbs, Joseph Jackson, John Cary, John Duddelston, William Burges, Joseph Burges and Nathaniel Day, as Councillors. Many of the King's nominees were Dissenters, some were survivors of the Commonwealth regime, and Scrope was the son of a regicide; but even those appointments were not so astonishing as was the selection for Town Clerk of Nathaniel Wade, notorious as an accomplice in the Rye House plot, and as one of Monmouth's prompters and lieutenants in the western rebellion. To remove all difficulty in the way of the royal nominees, the Mandate further directed that they were not to be required, before taking their seats, to swear the oaths imposed by Acts of Parliament, “with which we are pleased to dispense”. His Majesty confided the above instruments to Wade, who arrived in Bristol on February 2nd, and forthwith informed the Mayor that he had “something to communicate” to the Council. A meeting of that body was accordingly convened for the 4th, when, if the members had been previously kept in the dark as to the fate hanging over them, their eyes must have been opened by the aspect of the Council House, already crowded by the royal protégés. Mr. Lane having taken the chair, Wade was called in to fulfil his commission; the Order in Council was read; the displaced Tory gentlemen, who appear to have maintained a silence more eloquent than words, withdrew; the King's Mandate was next presented to Alderman Lawford, the senior surviving Alderman; and the election and admission of the new members, in pursuance of the royal commands, brought the amazing revolution to a close. The “purge”, as it was called, was sufficiently severe. Nevertheless, some flickerings of dissent from the royal policy were apparent, and on March 25th, the King in Council issued an Order for the displacement of Walter Stephens, one of the new Aldermen, and of five of the old Councillors; and this was followed, on the 26th, by a Mandate, nominating Simon Hurle as Alderman, and five obscure persons - probably Dissenters - to the other vacancies. These changes were accordingly made at a Council held on April 11th, the statutory oaths being again dispensed with. By this time


some members of the highly purified Corporation thought it indispensable to return thanks to their gracious creator, and a committee was appointed to draw up a suitable address. This document, which may be safely attributed to Wade, was brought up at a meeting held in the following week. In brief, the address laid the Council at his Majesty's feet, rendered hearty thanks for the happiness enjoyed under his wise government, extolled his suspension of the penal laws, promised the utmost exertions to support his policy, beseeched God to prolong his benign reign, and prayed that the Crown, at his death, might fall to a successor descending from himself, and inheriting his princely virtues. Puppets as they were in the royal hands, and liable to be swept away by the pen that created them, the majority of the Council revolted against the adulation that it was proposed to put into their mouths, the allusion to the expected advent of an infant prince being especially distasteful. The adoption of the address was negatived by sixteen votes against eleven, and a motion that it should be adopted with amendments was rejected by fourteen votes against thirteen. Wade, though not entitled to vote, impudently took part in both divisions, and figured of course amongst the minority. The largeness of the number of absentees was doubtless due to disgust at the Town Clerk's servile manoeuvring.

The proceedings of the royal nominees during their brief existence as civic rulers may be briefly summarised. Their first act was to order the anniversary of the King's accession to be celebrated with unusual trumpetings, salutes and bonfires. A few days later, their Puritan principles were displayed in a resolution for the revival of the week-day lectures at St. Nicholas's and St. Werburgh's churches. In May, the Princess Anne, with her husband the Prince of Denmark, arrived at Bath to drink the waters, and as their Highnesses declined an invitation from Bristol, orders were given for the despatch to them of sixty dozen of sherry and French wines; a further gift of a hogshead of sherry being forwarded to London, whither the Princess had hurried on the birth of a Prince, soon better known as a Pretender. The latter incident evoked many demonstrations of joy from the King's partisans in the Council, in spite of the incredulity with which the intelligence was received by the public. The office of Lord High Steward became vacant during the summer, on the death of the Duke of Ormond, but owing to dissensions as to a successor, the election was


twice deferred. (Strangely enough, there is no further reference to the vacancy in the minute books; but the office was certainly conferred, before the end of October, on James, Duke of Ormond, grandson of the deceased Duke.) The civic debt causing much embarrassment, it was resolved in August to sell as much of the corporate estates as would clear off the burden. On September 15th, when William Jackson was elected Mayor, with Thomas Liston and Joseph Jackson, Sheriffs, Alderman Hurle produced an Order in Council declaring the King's pleasure that he, and also Councillor James Wallis, should be dismissed, which was accordingly done. Hurle then produced a Mandate requiring the election of Henry Gibbs as Alderman and of Peter Mugleworth as Councillor, and the order was obeyed. On October 11th another Mandate, dated so far back as April 29th was produced, setting forth that the King, having received a good character of the sixty-nine persons named in the document (many of whom were Quakers), commanded their admission as freemen, without their being required to take any oath whatever. By this time, resistance to James's daily violations of the law was developing in the chief municipal bodies throughout the country, although they had all been manipulated with the vigour exerted in Bristol. It was moreover known that the King, alarmed at his position, had restored the charters of the city of London; so the Council after a debate, shelved a motion to obey the order, and adjourned the matter until the next House (which quietly ignored it). Directions were however given for the royal salutes and musical fantasias that usually took place on the King's birthday (October 11th). On the 14th his Majesty was constrained to withdraw from his monstrous encroachments on municipal liberties. It appears from the proclamation, Order in Council, and Mandate issued on the 17th that, saving a few exceptions, the surrenders of corporate charters made in and after 1679 had never been enrolled, or the judgments on Quo warrantos entered on the records, so that no surrender in law had been made of the ancient franchises, and the old corporations were not in fact dissolved. Wherefore, to quote the “general proclamation”, the King, of his grace and favour, being resolved to place the civic bodies in their former position, was pleased to order that Mayors, Sheriffs, Aldermen and Councillors elected after the date of the surrenders should be at once displaced, and the previous Aldermen and Councillors reinstated, after which, new elections of Mayors


and Sheriffs were to take place, although the charter days for such elections might have passed. His Majesty finally promised to restore and confirm the charters that had been surrendered.

The dignitaries that had been so contumeliously treated for their loyalty cannot but have exulted on returning to the Council House. But their proceedings when again reunited, on October 23rd, when Wade had disappeared and Romsey had returned to his office, exhibit no rancour towards the King's late nominees. On the contrary, William Jackson, the Mayor, was reappointed, though he was not really entitled to sit until he was elected a Councillor. The lately appointed Sheriffs disappeared with the other royal dependents, and Thomas Cole and William Browne were chosen, but the latter had fled from the city to his house at Frenchay, to escape the office, and the fine of £400 imposed upon him was never recovered. (His place was filled by the election of George White.) The arrival of the Dutch fleet under the Prince of Orange being daily expected, orders were given for the enrolment of six soldiers to guard the city gates; but this was clearly a mere formality, as the troopers served only eleven days during the ensuing two months. On October 25th the Council assembled to appoint a Recorder, when William Powlett, an able lawyer, was elected in the place of Roger North, whose friends were in a minority, and who revenged himself in his reminiscences by many sneers and libels on Bristol and its citizens. A copious present of wine was ordered for the Duke of Beaufort, who had already arrived in the city, by order of the King, with directions to repeat his exploits of 1685. On November 26th, when the King's position had become desperate, the Council, in co-operation with the leading local clergy, headed by Bishop Trelawny, whose principles of passive obedience and non-resistance had become marvellously modified, adopted a petition to His Majesty, praying for the convocation of a Free Parliament; but there is no evidence that this appeal ever reached its destination. James's flight and the events that followed it plunged the Corporation into utter helplessness and confusion. From the date of the above meeting until August, 1689, six attempts were made to assemble a Council for the despatch of business, but it was in each case found impossible to collect a quorum.

The local calendar writers are provokingly reticent in reference to the events of this memorable year. It is known


that the news of the birth of a Prince of Wales, received on June 12th, two days after the event, was greeted, as it was everywhere, with mingled dismay and incredulity. “They rang the bells a little while”, says one annalist, “but made but very small demonstrations of joy”. On the other hand, public sympathy was cordially manifested in the following week for the seven Bishops, whose liberation from the Tower was hailed with great popular enthusiasm, and similar demonstrations followed their ultimate acquittal. But nothing is recorded as to the reception of the news of the Prince of Orange's arrival, and it is necessary to resort to a London news-letter for most of the details in connection with the occupation of Bristol by the Deliverer's partisans. As stated above, the Duke of Beaufort arrived in the city in October, resolved to secure it on behalf of the King; but he held aloof from the Corporation, notwithstanding its gift of a quantity of wine, and took up his abode with the Collector of Customs. Becoming sorrowfully convinced that public feeling amongst all classes was adverse to his cause, his Grace made no effort to assemble any considerable number of trained bands. Such a moment was favourable for an outbreak of fanaticism amongst the ignorant and disorderly. On the morning of December 1st, a rabble gathered in the streets, and sacked the house of a Romanist harness-maker in Castle Street, burning part of the contents and stealing the remainder. The mob next attacked two houses in King Street, also occupied by men of the obnoxious faith, and wrought great havoc. Fortunately, in the afternoon, says the news writer, the Earl of Shrewsbury, with 200 horse and 200 infantry, entered the city without opposition, and assumed the functions of Governor by direction of the Prince of Orange. His Lordship was joined on the same day by Sir John Guest, who had recently returned from exile for his opposition to the Duke of Beaufort's proceedings, and who, with the assistance of Lord Delamere, had already raised a large body of volunteers in Gloucestershire. The Duke of Beaufort, hearing of the approach of these unwelcome visitors (he had attempted to arrest Guise in October), departed in some haste, “not staying to dine”, adds a chuckling chronicler. Lord Shrewsbury was met at the Tolzey by the Mayor and Aldermen, to whom he handed a letter from the Prince of Orange, assuring them that he had come to England in defence of religion, liberty and property, and adding that, being unwilling to burden them, and desiring to have their friendship and concurrence,


he had sent only a small party of troops. Lord Shrewsbury had also a letter for Bishop Trelawny, who had probably joined the Mayor and Corporation. His Lordship's brother, the colonel of the regiment that had so recently run riot in Bristol, had already carried over his troops to the Prince of Orange, and the Bishop himself hastened to salute the rising sun. “Lord Shrewsbury, with whose conduct we are all extremely pleased, will give you a full account of what has been done here, which, if your Highness should approve it, will be greater satisfaction to me that I have bore some part in the work which your Highness has undertaken . . . Believe me very ready to promote so good a work”. The Mayor and Aldermen also sent the Prince assurances of their assistance, and thanked him for his considerate treatment of the city. The adhesion of Bristol was deemed so important an event by William's advisers, that the missive of the justices was hurriedly translated into Dutch and despatched to Rotterdam, where it was forthwith published, accompanied by a proclamation of the Mayor and Aldermen forbidding Jesuits, monks and Romish priests from abiding in Bristol, and threatening those who harboured them with heavy penalties. (A copy of this remarkable tract is in the collection of Mr. G.E. Weare.) The disposition of the citizens generally was so favourable that it was thought needless to maintain a garrison, and all the troops, save a small guard for the gates, departed about December 5th. The only expense incurred by the Corporation during their stay was 40s., presented to the dragoons by the Mayer, presumably for their good conduct. The soldiers being gone, the populace gathered again, intending to attack the houses in King Street, but a calendar writer says:- “Sir John Knight, Sir Richard Crump and Sir Thomas Earle, and some others, drew their swords, which so daunted the rabble that they fled”. Only a few days later, a panic, the cause of which was never explained, broke out in Bristol, London, and almost every town in the kingdom. A rumour spread with amazing rapidity that the Irish soldiers disbanded by James II. were approaching, massacring on their way Protestant men, women and children. Thousands of persons flew to arms to resist the barbarians, and it was not discovered in Bristol until after a night of awful terror that the soldiery were stationed more than a week's march from the city. The Chamberlain paid £5 9s. “for powder, when the report was that the Irish that was disbanded were coming near this city, and did great cruelties wherever they goeth”.


Interrupting for a moment the story of the Revolution, attention may be drawn to a curious deed, now in the Reference Library, dated August 11th, 1688, by which Susanna Veil, of Bristol, in consideration of £40, conveyed to an attorney, named Parmiter, a moiety of the tithes of the lordship of Tockington. On the back of the instrument is a memorandum, signed by Parmiter, acknowledging that he had acted in the matter merely as the agent of Richard Hawksworth [a Bristol merchant], to whom he transferred the estate. In another hand is the following note:- “Nota bene. Richard Hawksworth, herein mentioned, and his heir Walter, who sold his right to these tyths to St. D., were & are still Quakers, though they did, without scruple, receive and use these tyth fruits so many years”. St. D., doubtless the writer of the above, was the Rev. Staunton Degge, of Over, who purchased the manor of Tockington, which, in 1688, was the property of Alderman Lawford, of the representatives of that gentleman's heiress, Lady Dineley, widow of the murdered Sir John Dineley, alias Goodere.

In the closing days of December, the Prince of Orange resolved on summoning a Convention for the settlement of the kingdom, which James II. had deserted. The writs for what was in all but the name a Parliament were forthwith issued, and the election proceedings at Bristol began on January 11th, 1689, and concluded on the 15th, when Sir Richard Hart and Sir John Knight were returned, their Whig opponents, Thomas Day and Robert Yate, being defeated. Bristol was one of the few important towns that returned uncompromising Tories at this great crisis, and both its members opposed the dethronement of James. Both, however, took the oath of allegiance to the new King and Queen, as did the Duke of Beaufort after a short hesitation. At the close of the session, the Council, after passing a vote of thanks to the members for their good services to the city and the Church of England, repealed the resolution abolishing the payment of “wages” to representatives, who received the usual allowance of 6s. Scl. per day, amounting to a total sum of £193.

The proclamation of King William and Queen Mary took place at the High Cross on February 16th, 1689. The meagre ceremonies denoted the prevailing sentiments of the civic body. Not one bottle of wine was consumed by the Corporation, and the total expenditure for salutes,


trumpeters, and bonfires was only £2 7s. 5d. A fortnight later, however, the King sent instructions that the keys of the city gates, which the Duke of Beaufort had long held so tenaciously, should be delivered to the Mayor, and this concession to corporate susceptibilities produced a good effect. On the day fixed for the coronation, in April, the Council went in state to the cathedral (10s. being paid “to four women that strewed sweet herbs before Mr. Mayor”), and a modest potation took place afterwards at the Council House, whilst cannon fired salutes.

Bishop Trelawny's sudden abjuration of the principle of passive obedience was rewarded in the way he desired. In answer to his petition for preferment to the see of Exeter, and for two good livings in that diocese, to be held in commendam, a congé d'élire in his favour was issued on March 16th, and on the same day he was granted a well-endowed Cornish deanery and a rectory in Devon by royal warrant. His successor in Bristol was Gilbert Ironside, son of a former Bishop of the same name. This prelate's episcopate here was even shorter than Trelawny's, his translation to Hereford taking place two years later.

Ecclesiastics were far from being the only suitors for the favour of the new Government. On March 15th, John Dutton Colt was appointed Collector of Customs at Bristol, in conformity with his petition recounting his sufferings in the Protestant cause.

The long-standing dispute over the election of Sir Thomas Earle as Alderman (see pp.402, 417) was revived in August, when the Court of Aldermen re-assembled after a suspension of eight months. With the assent of the Court, and in contradiction to its last decision on the subject, Sir Thomas took the oaths and his seat. Sir William Clutterbuck and Thomas Day were then elected Aldermen. Thomas Eston, who had been placed in Earle's seat by the Court in 1683, being now an encumbrance, it was resolved, a few days later, that, as he had been long imprisoned for debt, and could not attend to his office, which he had held all along, “contrary to right”, his election was void. Sir William Hayman, one of the late King's nominees, was also ejected, and the Mayor, with Edward Feilding and William Donning, were appointed to vacant seats. These resolutions were not passed without much dissension. In fact, the Mayor was so embarrassed in the performance of his office that, on September 4th, he


addressed an appeal to the Government. His letter, which is amongst the State Papers, stated that he had, on the preceding day, called a House to make arrangements for the coming elections, but many members did not attend, while others came only to wrangle about precedency. “They are for the most part those who consented to the surrender of the charter, and I believe are least affected to their Majesties' interest. I desire directions, wishing to leave office in the hands of men entirely disposed to their Majesties' service, which I cannot promise if this party prevail”. In reply, Lord Shrewsbury said the King had noticed the Mayor's faithful service, and expected that those who had a right to choose officers should act as became them. If business were obstructed, the names of offenders should be sent up to the Privy Council, that they might be prosecuted. The result of the aldermanic proceedings came out on election day, when the civic scribe placed no less than seventeen Aldermen on the roll, declining the responsibility of omitting Eston and those whom the late King had nominated or displaced. Arthur Hart, an ultra-Tory, was placed in the chair. Ignoring King James's order for the exemption of John Bubb, that gentleman was not only elected a Councillor but appointed one of the Sheriffs.

At the period under review, the law made no provision for such persons condemned to death for felony as the judges thought fit to save from the gallows. Prisoners were hanged by scores every year for what would now be deemed trivial offences; but if, from extreme youth or other extenuating circumstances, the penalty of death were remitted, the culprit suffered no heavier punishment than that endured by poor people imprisoned for non- payment of a debt. The perplexity occasioned by this defect in the statute book is illustrated by a letter addressed by the Recorder of Bristol to the Attorney-General at the close of the gaol delivery in September. Three men, wrote Serjeant Powlett, had been sentenced to death: one for sheep stealing, one for personating a landed man, and a third for instigating the latter felony. The two first were notorious rogues, and the whole country would cry out if they were not hanged; but it might be well to transport the other, who was only twenty-four years old. The writer asked for advice, especially as to what power judges had to transport prisoners convicted of small felonies. “Here are two boys, the eldest not twelve, convicted of


stealing a purse with forty pence in it. I reprieved because so young, upon their friends promising to transport them”. What would have happened to the two children if they had been destitute of friends is left to conjecture.

Whatever might be the bickerings in the Council chamber over precedency and other trifles, the members were pretty unanimous in their hatred of Nonconformists. It was resolved in October, that, “the settlement of the militia being in some part in the hands of Dissenters and persons obnoxious to the Church of England”, the fact should be represented to the King, together with “other emergencies that may fall out”. A committee was also appointed to write to the city members, desiring their attention to these important matters.

On January 18th, 1690, a fire broke out in the White Lion inn, Broad Street, by which that long-famed hostelry, together with an adjoining house, was burned to the ground. The Chamberlain disbursed £7 8s. 9d. amongst those who strove to quench the flames.

A parliamentary election, consequent on the dissolution of the preceding House of Commons, began in Bristol on February 24th and continued for five days. The previous members, Sir Richard Hart and Sir John Knight, again offered themselves, and defeated their Whig opponents, the Recorder and Robert Yate. The unsuccessful candidates petitioned against the return, alleging that many of their supporters had been prevented from voting, whilst divers unqualified persons had been allowed to vote against them; but their claim seems to have been abandoned. The Tory majority in the Council were so enraged at the candidature of Serjeant Powlett that they refused to allow him to be present at meetings of the Chamber, although an Alderman by virtue of his office.

The repudiation by the Corporation of all responsibility in reference to the cleansing of the streets was noted in a previous page. As was to be expected, the parochial authorities were little disposed to bear the burden, and reduced their scavenging staff to derisory proportions. Though the narrow alleys inhabited by the poor were not merely lanes but sewers, the sum expended in the populous parish of St. Stephen in the summer of 1690, according to the records of the vestry, was only 4s. per week, whilst St. Leonard's vestry laid out only £6 a year; and there is no reason to suppose that those districts were more parsimonious than


their neighbours. The scandal continued until the last year of the century.

The Corporation, in fact, was overwhelmed with debt and menaced with insolvency. In July it was announced that two creditors threatened distraints, and orders were given for raising temporary loans. The crisis was finally overcome by the sale of lands at Hamp for £3,600. Instances of contemptible parsimony and of gross extravagance occur in the year's accounts. Thus, on July 22nd, the Chamberlain notes:- “Spent on several attorneys at the Nag's Head, 2s. 2d”. A few weeks before he had paid “Jonathan Blackwell, Esq., for wine, £102” - representing about 260 gallons.

In August, Mr. Edward Colston made a proposal to the Council to purchase three acres of land on St. Michael's Hill, known as the Turtles, or Jonas Leaze, intimating his intention to build thereon an almshouse, chapel, and other buildings. The Corporation, in view of his charitable purpose, demanded only £100 for the ground, and the conveyance was executed in November. There is no record of the opening of the almshouse, which was constructed for the reception of twelve men and twelve women, and cost about £2,500. In January, 1696, Mr. Colston conveyed the property, together with the endowment fund - consisting of a great number of fee-farm rents purchased from the Crown - to Sir Richard Hart and twenty-seven other citizens, chiefly members of the Merchants' Society, who were constituted managers of the charity, with power to appoint successors. The nomination of alms-people was reserved to the founder for life, with remainder to the Merchants' Society in perpetuity.

One of the calendar writers of this time records that “much heats and contentions degraded the Chamber, and engendered continual squabblings and heart-burnings”; and though the minutes of the Council are drawn up with great reserve and ambiguity, enough may be made out to corroborate the assertion. Quarrels as to precedence were of frequent occurrence, the ex-mayors and sheriffs elected after the return of the charters refusing to recognise the seniority of the officials designated by James II. or elected by his nominees. A few headstrong Jacobites refused to enter the Chamber at all, and attempts to coerce them by fines proved unavailing, as they had not taken the oath of allegiance to the new sovereigns, and were therefore disqualified. In supplying vacancies, Dissenters and others


were chosen against their will for the mere purpose of annoyance, and heavy fines were imposed for non- acceptance of office; but one James Whiting, being thus treated, and committed to gaol in default of payment, raised an action for illegal imprisonment, and the Council were glad to settle the matter by relieving him of his office. Other men, again, claimed to act as Councillors, though the dominant party contended that they had no right to sit, but this argument was raised only when the claimant's politics were antagonistic to those of the majority. Sir John Knight, for instance, had formally resigned his gown before being displaced by King James, but he returned and claimed his place as if nothing had happened, and was of course welcomed by his allies, who elected him Mayor in September. With the pretended object of securing good order, an ordinance was passed in the same month, under which any intruder claiming to take part in the business of the House was to forfeit £20, and be imprisoned in default of payment; whilst Mayors or Sheriffs neglecting to put this law in force were threatened with the same penalties. But the decree fell stillborn. The exasperation of the ruling faction was especially directed against Sir Thomas Earle, and reached its climax in October. So far as can be gathered from the vague records, it would appear that in the previous February the then Mayor (Hart) and some of the Tory Aldermen, on evidence of a hearsay character, had committed the mate of Earle's ship, the Eleanor, on a charge of having a French pass in his possession, with the object, as Hart insinuated, of landing a cargo of leaden bullets in an enemy's port. Sir Thomas Earle thereupon wrote to Secretary Lord Shrewsbury, setting forth what he said were the true facts. The ship's cargo, chiefly perishable goods, was consigned to his sons, factors at Bilbao, and he had not sent a ship to France for thirty years. Neither the captain nor himself knew that the mate had a pass; but as all other attempts to compromise him had failed, Sir John Knight had turned affidavit man, while the Mayor, of like principles, had “got a lewd fellow to swear to something that I believe was taught him”. If attention was paid to such stories, the Secretary would “find trouble enough whilst this man is Mayor, for their whole party, being known to be most zealous Jacobites”, would cover their designs by aspersing the men they mortally hated, namely, those faithful to the Government; the present project being mainly designed to defeat the election of


well-affected members of Parliament. A copy of this letter came into the hands of Earle's enemies about the end of September, either by dint of bribing a Government underling, or by the treachery of Lord Shrewsbury himself, who had secretly gone over to the Jacobites. Before calling Sir Thomas to account on this matter, a new charge was raised against him by his opponents. They alleged that on July 23rd, whilst Hart and some Aldermen were sitting in the Tolzey, Earle tumultuously broke in upon them with a crowd of people, and insolently menaced them for granting bail to one Moore, accused of sedition, which so alarmed the justices for their own safety that they committed Moore to Newgate against their judgment. Thirdly, it was asserted that Sir Thomas, with other deputy- lieutenants, had come into the Council House, and demanded that the corporate books should be shown to the Earl of Macclesfield (now Lord-Lieutenant of the city, vice the Duke of Beaufort, resigned), for the purpose of bringing an accusation against Hart, and prying into the civic secrets. These charges having been formulated, Earle produced an answer in writing, which the Council refused to accept, and he was ordered to give categorical replies to the accusations. On the first head he declined to say anything until his letter was produced, which of course could not be done. To the second, he contended that he had simply protested against an improper act, when Hart had contemptuously ordered him - a magistrate - to “go away aime”. As to the third, he stated that he and his official companions wished to inspect an order concerning them in the Council books. He was thereupon ordered to withdraw, and the Council, declaring all the charges proved, resolved by a large majority that he be expelled from the Corporation. (The only Whigs present were Aldermen Creswick, Day and Donning, and Robert Yate.) The Jacobite triumph was of brief duration. At the next meeting, November 12th, the Mayor announced that he had been served with a “rule” for a mandamus, requiring Earle's restoration, and it was resolved to put in an answer. The defence was unsatisfactory to the Court of King's Bench, which granted a mandamus in February, 1691, when the mortified majority were compelled to vote for Earle's restoration to his office.

Whilst the above squabble was raging, William III. reached Kingroad on September 6th on his return from the Battle of the Boyne. His Majesty landed at Kingsweston,


then recently acquired by Sir Robert Southwell, Irish Secretary of State, and on the following day he passed through Bristol on his way to the Duke of Beaufort's mansion at Badminton. The only available approach to the city from Kingsweston was down St. Michael's Hill, then narrow, precipitous and rugged, leading to a dangerous declivity called Steep Street, and the descent must have been trying to one who delighted in the level flats of his own land. At Froom Gate, Christmas Street, the King was received by the city dignitaries, who preceded him, bareheaded, to Lawford's Gate. Remembering the lavish outlay repeatedly incurred in doing honour to William's predecessors, the only items of civic expense on this occasion are worthy of a record:- “Paid six soldiers for going in the city's arms, 6s. Disbursed in the Council House, 10s.” In November, a day of Thanksgiving was appointed to celebrate the King's successes: but the ruling party in the Council were the reverse of jubilant, and only six shillings worth of sack was needed “to drink the King and Queen's health”, implying a very general abstention from a distasteful ceremony.

Soon after the King's return to England, the honour of knighthood was conferred upon John Duddleston, a Bristol merchant largely concerned in the West Indian and tobacco trades. A few weeks later, January, 1691, Sir John was created a baronet. The cause of these distinctions has never been explained, but it is not improbable that Duddleston, who appears to have been a Whig and a Dissenter, was sent to Kingsweston to offer the King the respectful homage of the citizens of similar sentiments - a tribute which the sullen reserve of the Jacobite Council would render the more gratifying. It is almost needless to add that the story of a knighthood being conferred on a humble staymaker by Queen Anne, more than ten years later, is one of the absurd fictions invented by a stupid imitator of Chatterton.

The Corporation were troubled, near the close of the year, by the arrival of Sir Edward Philipps, sent down by the Government to assume the office of Vice-Admiral, in repudiation of the city's chartered rights. The Members of Parliament were forthwith furnished with documentary evidence of the local privilege, and their exertions for its maintenance proved successful. In February, 1691, the Council were informed by the Mayor that Philipps's commission had been quashed, and that the Government had promised to conduct future Admiralty business through


the chief magistrate. So far as can be discovered, this was the last occasion on which the Council took the trouble to defend a right that had ceased to be of any real value, and had been often a source of expense. The local jurisdiction had been tacitly surrendered before 1741, when, on the committal of Sir John Dineley's murderers for trial in Bristol, the Government attempted to move the case into the Admiralty Court, alleging that the crime was committed at sea. Sir Michael Foster, the Recorder, founded a successful defence of the magistrates on the fact that Kingroad was within the boundaries of the city, which ousted a jurisdiction that he did not care to dispute.

At the above meeting in February, the Council were about to admit Charles Delamain, “lapidary” to the freedom, on payment of £15, when the goldsmiths of the city, who had heard of the intention, presented a petition complaining that the admission of Delamain, whom they styled a jeweller, would be grievously prejudicial to their trade. The Council thereupon raised the fine to £30, and that sum was paid.

Retrenchment in trifles was still pursued by the civic rulers. It was resolved on February 27th to abolish the salary of £2 paid to the Keeper of the Library, on the death of the existing librarian. A committee was also instructed to view the house, set apart a space sufficient to store up the books, and let the rest of the building as a dwelling! In spite of parsimonies of this kind, the Corporation could not meet their liabilities, and in the following month, when a distraint was threatened for a debt of £400, it was determined to abstract that sum from charity funds, to be refunded when money came in. By the ingenuity of the Mayor (Sir John Knight), these financial troubles were turned to account for political purposes. On July 22nd he dilated on the great expense incurred for the entertainment of the judges, and induced the Council to abolish the custom, and to limit the future outlay to a sum “not exceeding £5 for some small necessaries”. He then sent a messenger to the judges on circuit, averring that this step had been taken, not from disrespect but pure necessity. The well-informed diarist, Luttrell, notes the conclusion of the matter. On the envoy fulfilling his mission at Exeter, Mr. Justice Gregory replied that the Corporation “need not fright themselves with his being a burden to them (though he knew well enough how to construe their excuse). At his coming to the city he received great insolencies from some persons who


were very tumultuous about his coach, and threw dirt at him, for which, publicly noticing the affront, and resolving that their Majesties' Government should not be so wounded through him, he fined the city £100, and each Sheriff £20, but on their submission he remitted the fines”.

The hostility of Sir Richard Hart, M.P., to the Government of William III. was exemplified by a speech which he addressed to the Council in April. The recourse to impressment for reinforcing the land and sea forces was then of ordinary occurrence, and during the reigns of the Stewarts the Corporation had been frequently zealous in raising the contingents that were called for. But the impressment of three Kingswood labourers for service in the army was complained of by the Jacobite knight as a shameful abuse of the liberty of the subject. He drew, moreover, an alarming picture of the disorders to be dreaded from the irritation of the colliers, whose numbers he estimated at 500, and who, he said, might not only become riotous, but refuse to supply the city with fuel. As the result of his tirade, his political sympathisers resolved to address a complaint to the Government, who seem to have treated it with silent contempt.

A somewhat enigmatical minute was made at a Council meeting in July:- “Mr. Mayor observed that several shows and sights are setting up in the fair by the license of the Mayor, in the houses of private persons, to the prejudice of the fee farm. Ordered, that Mr. Mayor and all future Mayors be desired to grant no license to any but such that shall take ground of the city of the fee farm as usual”. The apparent complaint of the Mayor against his own conduct was probably directed against licenses granted by his predecessors. The profits derived from letting stands during the fairs amounted to about £60 per annum. A standing at the High Cross let for 30s. Three in the Corn Market, Wine Street, brought in £28 15s. A theatrical booth in the Horse Fair was set up almost every year, and produced £3. Subsequently, two companies of players made their appearance, increasing the receipts; but the old dislike of the drama was aroused by the innovation, and in 1699 the actors were banished, the Sheriffs being compensated for their loss by a vote of £5 yearly out of the civic purse.

The reappearance of John Roe, the rebellious swordbearer, was foreshadowed in page 404. On November 11th, the Mayor informed the Council that he had been summoned to show cause why a mandamus should not issue for the


reinstatement of Roe in his former position, whereupon it was resolved to put in an answer repelling the claim. No further mention of the case occurs for some time, but, according to Shower's King's Bench Reports, the dispute came before the Court for judgment in Michaelmas Term, 1691. (There is admitted confusion in the chronological order of these reports, and this cause is probably antedated.) The defence of the Corporation was based on Roe's absence from his duties, and especially on his outlawry after the Rye House plot. As to the latter plea, Roe rejoined that the outlawry had been reversed. The Court determined that mere absence was no forfeiture of the place, and that it had not been proved that Roe was absent when the Mayor was “in his progresses” officially. But outlawry was an undoubted disability, and Roe must sue out a new writ, reciting the outlawry and its reversal. “And afterwards”, adds the reporter, “he brought such a special writ, and we amended the return, etc”. Strange to say, the matter again drops out of sight until a meeting of the Council in January, 1695, when the following minute is recorded:- “Resolved that Mr. Lane, who is sued by Mr. John Row for not restoring him, be defended at the city's charge”. In the following April, Roe petitioned for restoration to his place, or compensation: and a committee then appointed to negotiate with him reported a few days later that they had offered him £40, but that he insisted on £150. Both parties being stubborn, Roe renewed legal proceedings, and on June 1st the Mayor announced that he had been subpoened by Roe to appear at the trial of the case. The rest of the minute offers a striking example of the frequent negligence of the city scribes:- “Upon debate of the matter” and there the writer stops! The truth appears to be that the Corporation had no valid defence to offer, and determined on a compromise. On June 5th, the Chamberlain paid Roe £100, “by order of the Common Council”, and brought the long dispute to an end.

The State Papers for 1691 contain an account of an affair that must have caused much excitement in the city, though no local writer condescended even to allude to it. In a report to the Treasury, dated November 12th, the Customs Commissioners commended the petition of John Dutton Colt, Collector at Bristol, who had succeeded, by the help of an informer on board the ship Bristol Merchant, in detecting certain Customs officers and local


merchants in a combination for defrauding the revenue. He had recovered £2,772 from the incriminated merchants, and £500, as a fine, from the officers, and the latter had moreover been convicted in the Court of King's Bench, and condemned to stand publicly upon the Back, placarded upon their breasts with a paper declaring their crime. (This punishment, according to a London news-letter, was remitted by the Government.) The Commissioners recommended that Colt should be generously recompensed, with what result does not appear. Subsequently, charges of misconduct against Colt himself were made by Bristolians, but the Government seem to have taken no steps against him.

An unexpected resolution was passed by the Council in December. Impressed, perhaps, by the pacification of Ireland, and by the increased security of commerce due to a reorganized Navy, the House had at length begun to manifest some respect for the new occupants of the throne; and the Chamberlain was directed to pay £13 5s. “for the King and Queen's pictures now set up in the Council Chamber”. The portraits had been evidently ordered by some previous resolution of which there is no record. The money was paid to “Mr. More”, probably the well-known Dutch painter, Karel de Moor.

The corporate Bargain Book, in March, 1692, contains an interesting reference to an ancient building then belonging to Edward Colston. The entry recites a lease granted, in 1682. to Captain Richard Ham, of the White Lodge and gardens, on St. Michael's Hill, part of the estate of the old Hospital of St. Bartholomew. This lease had become vested in Mr. Colston, and on its surrender by him, and the payment of £24, a new lease for forty-one years was granted, at his request, to John Price, mariner, at a rental of 56s. 8d. The White Lodge stood at the bottom of the Hill, nearly facing the King David inn. But there was another White Lodge, adjacent to the Red Lodge, and both are mentioned as being still in existence at the beginning of the nineteenth century.

Sir William Merrick, who had taken little part in civic affairs for some time, petitioned in August to be discharged from further service, and the Council consented to his retirement on payment of £100. The fine was paid in the following year, when an objection was raised to the dismissal. A civic bye-law was then in force requiring every member to record his vote, either in person or by proxy, on


the election of Mayor. On September 15th, the entire Council, with a single exception, assembled under these conditions, and the Chamberlain was elected a Councillor for the day to make the roll complete. By inadvertence, some one previously holding Merrick's proxy voted again in his name, and it was contended that the discharge had thus become invalid. After a solemn deliberation, Sir William was finally liberated.

The Council were again in financial trouble in November, 1693. A creditor holding bonds for £1,000 threatened to distrain for the amount, and a scandal was averted only by begging a loan of £350 from a lady, the balance being reluctantly contributed by three members of the House. The embarrassment brought about a reform in the manner of keeping the city accounts, which had undergone scarcely any alteration since the middle ages, and was extremely obscure and imperfect. It was resolved in December to provide the Chamberlain with a ledger, journal and cash book, which he was instructed to make up monthly.

Previous reference has been made to the French Protestants driven from their country by Louis XIV. A considerable number of the Huguenots settled in Bristol, and some attained a good position as merchants. In September, 1693, one of these, Stephen Peloquin, was admitted a free burgess, on the nomination of the Mayor. A member of this family, David Peloquin, was elected Sheriff in 1735, and Mayor in 1751, and another, Mary Ann Peloquin, bequeathed £19,000 to the Corporation for charitable purposes. Other Huguenot names, such as Daltera and Piquenet, are found in the lists of civic officers, whilst some families were lost in the general population by the Anglicising of their surnames, Levraut being changed to Hare, and Leroy to King. There is no record in the corporate minutes of the grant to the refugees of the use of the Mayor's Chapel as a place of worship; but they certainly were in possession of it soon after the Revolution, and were then a numerous congregation.

Wealthy Huguenots desirous of becoming English subjects could attain that end by obtaining a special Act of Parliament; but this process was beyond the means of the bulk of the refugees, who therefore suffered under the disabilities of aliens. Besides the French exiles, moreover, great numbers of industrious German Protestants, driven from their homes by the French devastation of the


Rhenish provinces, had sought shelter in this country. A feeling arose in Parliament that the rigour of the alien laws might be relaxed in favour of the sufferers for religion, and in December a Bill to sanction their naturalisation was read twice in the House of Commons without a division. The enemies of the Government, however, seized the opportunity to inflame the national hatred of foreigners, and on January 4th, 1694, when it was proposed to consider the Bill in committee, it was furiously denounced by the Opposition. It was, they alleged, a fraudulent device, under which the country would be flooded by Dutchmen, who would adopt any faith for money, and would soon be a greater curse than the plagues of Egypt. Amongst the most virulent of the speakers, according to the measure of his ability, was Sir John Knight, whose coarse ranting was afterwards dressed up into decent English by abler Jacobites in the background. After much irrelevant rigmarole about the liberties of England, the miseries of our troops in Flanders, and the cunning and meanness of our Dutch allies, Knight professed to speak on behalf of his constituents. He could not hope that his city would be saved from the general inundation that this Bill would bring upon the liberties and property of the nation. Supporters of the Bill were stigmatised as wanting in patriotism, and on the remark provoking protests, the orator alleged he had offended them by concluding that their religion was from the Bible. “If it be that which displeaseth, I beg pardon and promise not to offend again on that score, and conclude with this motion:- 'That the sergeant be commanded to open the doors, and let us first kick the Bill out of the House, and then kick the foreigners out of the kingdom'”. This diatribe, with its incoherence pruned and its offensiveness aggravated, was printed secretly at Jacobite presses, and circulated by tens of thousands, undoubtedly winning much approval and assent. But when a copy of the concocted ribaldry was laid before the House on March 1st (not fifty years later, as is strangely asserted by a local historian), it caused an outburst of disgust, and its pretended author, in dread of the consequences, lyingly disclaimed all knowledge of the publication. The House resolved that the libel was false, scandalous, and seditious, and ordered it to be burned by the hangman. The Bill was withdrawn. That Knight was incapable of making such a speech as was attributed to him is sufficiently


attested by a note he addressed to a brother alderman, a copy of which is given by a local annalist:- “Sir John Knight presents his compliments to Sir Richard Crumpe and have a hat which are not mine. If you has a hat which are not yourn, probably it are the missing one”.

Amongst the records of the Corporation is an interesting memorandum, showing the amount of a new tax collected from the property owners of the city in the last three months of 1693. Parliament in the previous year had ordered an accurate valuation of real estate to be made throughout the kingdom, and directed that a tax on the yearly value - which soon obtained the name of Land Tax - should be assessed for the support of the war. The valuation of parishes then made remains unaltered to the present day, so that the tax, which was originally four shillings in the pound, has fallen in some parishes to a fraction of a farthing. The total sum collected in Bristol for the last quarter of 1693 was £1,617 8s. 11d., representing the annual value of the city at £32,349. The yearly rental of St. Nicholas parish was fixed at £3,443; St. Stephen's, £3,266; St. Thomas's, £3,138; St. James's, £2,742; Christ Chuich, £2,000; St. Augustine's, £1,866; Temple, £1,804; St. Ewen's, £1,681; Castle Precincts, £1,681; Redcliff, £1,566; St. Peter's, £1,526; St. John's, £1,339; St. Philip's, £1,237; All Saints, £1,200; St. Michael's, £1,124; St. Mary-le-port, £1,019; St. Leonard's, £882; and St. Werburgh's, £840. The figures must roughly indicate the proportionate population of each parish.

Much distress prevailed during the winter of 1693-4 owing to the high price of bread. In January, the Corporation petitioned the Government to be permitted to import 5,000 bushels of grain from Ireland for the relief of the poor, free from the existing duty of 8s. per quarter; but the Ministry replied that it had not power to assent, the Customs duties having been mortgaged for the repayment of a loan.

At a meeting of the Council, on March 20th, 1694, a resolution was adopted, setting forth that the main streets and avenues within the precincts (alluding to Old Market Street, St. Michael's Hill, and similar thoroughfares) were out of repair, though they had been mended by the parishes to the utmost of their ability, and needed much more outlay to make them decent and safe; wherefore the House, considering that the city parishes had the


advantage and credit of these roads, ordered that all the parishes should contribute to their reparation, in proportions to be fixed by a committee, the Corporation undertaking to assist in mending the way to Lawford's Gate. As the Council had no legal power to assess rates for such a purpose, the resolution probably came to nothing.

A project of much importance was laid before the Council in August. The minute recorded is as follows:- “Mr. Mayor produced the proposals made by Mr. Goddard and others for the bringing in of water from some adjacent stream or river into the city, to serve the inhabitants, at rents between the undertakers and tenants or inhabitants, was read. A committee appointed to treat with the undertakers”. In January, 1695, the committee presented a report, stating that the undertakers had refused to assent to the terms demanded by the Corporation. What those terms were, and what the Council now determined upon, are points left in obscurity through the slovenly language used by the minute-writer. Apparently the committee had proposed to grant a lease for a fine of £200, renewable every seven years on payment of £266 13s. 4d. on each occasion; and it may be conjectured that the projectors had offered £100 for a lease, and £200 for each septennial renewal. On February 27th the committee brought up another report recommending that the fines should be fixed at £160 and £166 13s. 4d. respectively. It would seem that the undertakers assented to these terms, for in April the Council ordered that they should be prosecuted “with vigour, for breach of articles”. But by some means the contract was annulled by consent, and on August 1st the Town Clerk read the clauses of another agreement arranged by the committee on the same pecuniary terms. One clause, giving the undertakers liberty to make a cistern on the Markethouse in Wine Street, was struck out by the Council; the rest of the articles were approved, subject to the projectors paying all the costs incurred, and rewarding the Town Clerk “for his pains”. The fine of £160 was paid a few days later, when the lease was doubtless executed. The prospect of amicable relations, however, soon vanished, for in January, 1696, the Chamber directed the city members to oppose the Bill for carrying out the works, which was being “laboured at” in the House of Commons by Daniel Small and others. The policy of the Corporation on the subject is somewhat inexplicable. A clear desire was shown to extract as much money as possible out of the company,


while obstacles were repeatedly raised to the progress of the undertaking. The opposition to the Bill was unavailing, and it received the Royal Assent. The promoters, Daniel Small, of London, Richard Berry, silkman, Bristol, Samuel Sandford, wine cooper, Bristol, and two other Londoners, subscribed a capital of £6,175, divided into 95 shares of £65 each, and purchased, for £900, a lease of extensive flour mills at Hanham Weir, for which they paid a rent of £95 per annum. The water drawn from the Avon at that spot was conveyed to near Crews Hole, whence it was driven by “an ingenious machine” - possibly a primitive steam-engine - to a reservoir at Lawrence Hill, and thence flowed by gravitation into the city. The whole of the pipes were bored out of trunks of elms. The works were completed in 1698, and in 1700 the Water Company, in petitioning against an Avon Navigation Bill, alleging that the scheme would destroy their property at Hanham, informed the House of Commons that they supplied water to “many hundreds of tenants” - a statement that must be accepted with reserve. The water rent was a fixed charge of £2 per house, and “many hundreds” of customers would have produced substantial profits on the small capital, whereas in point of fact the concern was never prosperous, and was ultimately abandoned. In 1700, the Corporation deigned to patronise the Company by ordering a supply of water for the gaol, and by offering £50 towards the erection of a cistern over the Meal Market “to contain 40 tons of water to extinguish fires”.

The vestry of St. Stephen's parish resolved in December, 1694, that a vestry room “of a convenient bigness” should be constructed over the porch of the church. As churchwardendom had then reached almost the lowest depths of barbarism, the fate of the beautiful porch, had the project been carried out, may be safely surmised. But at the ensuing Easter gathering “it was found proper”, says the minute-book, to have the vestry built over the “Scull House” at the east end of the church. This building, which still deforms the fabric, was completed in 1696, at a cost of £100. “Bone houses”, necessitated by the overcrowded state of the burial grounds, were an ordinary feature of the parochial cemeteries. An unusually large one stood in the area before St. James's church. Hour-glasses, as admonitions to prolix preachers, were also common. St. Philip's vestry paid half a crown this year for “mending the hour-glass”.

An amusing illustration of the selfishness of the age


appears in the Journal of the House of Commons for December 17th. The members for Bristol presented a petition from the merchants and traders of the city trading to the plantations, complaining that, contrary to law, divers ships of British subjects were carrying goods from the American settlements direct to Scotland and Ireland, to the great prejudice of the petitioners, and praying that the evil should be remedied. The petition met with much approval, and a Bill dealing with the grievance passed both houses unopposed, and received the Royal Assent. It enacted that from December 1st, 1696, it should be unlawful, under pretence of stress of weather or any other pretext, to land any American products in Scotland or Ireland, unless they had been first imported into England and re-shipped, under penalty of forfeiture of both ship and cargo. It was further provided that if a ship through stranding or leakiness was driven into an Irish port, and could proceed no further, the Customs officers were to take possession of the cargo, and to ship it, at the expense of the owners, into another vessel bound for England. The members for Bristol displayed great energy and incurred some expense in carrying the Bill through Parliament, and received the hearty thanks of local merchants. The statute remained long in force.

The Christmas season of 1694 was saddened by the death of Queen Mary, who, as an Englishwoman, enjoyed much more popularity than was ever accorded to her husband. The Jacobites, however, displayed rancorous exultation at her demise. To the disgrace of the Bristol clergy, the bells of several of the city churches rang merry peals instead of funereal knells, whilst a drunken rabble danced about the streets, accompanied by musicians playing “The King shall enjoy his own again”. The Council, however, adopted an address of condolence to the King, and on the day of the funeral the High Cross was covered with black cloth.

The Chamberlain, in March, 1695, paid £6 5s. to a carpenter “for making a wooden cage to put rude people in”. This structure, sometimes styled it “the hutch”. appears to have stood near the Guildhall: but was removed after a few years' trial.

A momentous event, though unrecorded in all English histories until the time of Macaulay, recurred in the spring of 1695. Parliament, in passing a Bill for the continuance of several temporary Acts, omitted the statute which subjected printers and printing-presses to many annoying restrictions. No pamphlet or book could be published


unless it had received the approval of an official censor; and as printing-presses were practically interdicted in all provincial towns except Oxford, Cambridge, and York, the Stationers' Company in London enjoyed an almost complete monopoly of the trade. Anticipating the decision of the two Houses on the subject, one William Bonny, who had been carrying on a printing business in London, came down to Bristol, and presented a petition to the Council “for liberty to set up a printing press in this city”, and for admission as a free burgess to further his enterprise. On April 24th, the Chamber, after grave consideration, came to the conclusion that a printing-house might “be useful in several respects”, but was not disposed to allow a “foreigner” to compete with local booksellers in their especial business, and the freedom was conferred on Bonny on condition that he dwelt in the city and exercised no trade save that of a printer. It would seem that the liberty conferred on the press was forthwith abused by the Jacobites, for towards the close of the year a Bill was brought into the newly elected House of Commons to “regulate” printing - in other words, to revive some of the old restrictions. On December 2nd, when the measure had made some progress, Mr. John Cary, a Bristol merchant and Bonny's earliest patron, wrote in some alarm to the members for the city, urging them to get a clause introduced “to establish a press for printing here”, pointing out that Bonny had “lately settled amongst us, and it will be to the interest of the city that he should be encouraged”. Mr. Yate, replying on the 5th for himself and his colleague, stated that it was not intended that the Bill should debar York, Bristol, and other great places from the privilege of printing. Fortunately, however, the session closed before the Bill could be further considered. Cary's relations with Bonny will be dealt with presently.

The growing fame of the Hot Well for the curative properties of its water appears to have attracted many persons to Bristol during the later years of the century, in spite of the difficulties that had to be encountered in reaching the spring, which rose between high and low water mark on the muddy bank of the Avon, and was entirely unprotected. Anticipating profit by rendering assistance to visitors, two men, in 1687, rented the Well from the Merchants' Society, at 40s. per annum, and in 1691 a wall was built around the spring, at the expense, it is said, of Sir John Knight, with a view of barring out the


tidal water and facilitating access, but the results were disappointing. At length, in the early months of 1695, Sir Thomas Day, Mr. Robert Yate, and a few other public-spirited men, entered into negotiations with the Merchant Venturers' Society with a view to providing suitable accommodation for persons visiting the spa. In the result, the Society, on April 4th, 1695, granted to two of the above confederacy, Charles Jones, soap-boiler, and Thomas Callowhill, draper, a lease of the Well, and of some adjoining rocks and land, for a term of ninety years, at a rent of £6, the lessees covenanting that £500 should be expended in erecting a convenient pump-room and lodging-house, and in making walks to shelter and entertain visitors. The right of citizens and Cliftonians to consume the water without payment was reserved. It appears from the will of Mr. Yate, dated in 1734, that the undertaking was divided into forty shares, nine of which were held by that gentleman. The improvements at the spa effected under the lease soon became known in fashionable circles, and many persons sojourning at Bath were accustomed to make a short stay at the Hot Well, which was managed with great liberality, only a nominal charge being demanded from frequenters of the pump-room.

Influenced perhaps by the activity of the new Water Company, the Corporation resolved in August on extending the advantages of their spring at Jacob's Wells. This source had been previously made available to the corporate tenants in College Green by means of “ fountains”, but the supply was inadequate. It was now resolved to build a cistern near the old Gaunts' Hospital, from which pipes could be laid to the neighbouring dwellings. In October, 1696, another resolution was adopted, stating that the Chamber had incurred great expense [£60] in enlarging the supply, which was not only sufficient to provide for the city tenants, but for all the locality, and a committee was instructed to treat with other applicants. Those supplying water to non-paying neighbours were to be deprived of their pipes. The reservoir, afterwards rebuilt on a larger scale, still exists in the house at the corner of College Green and Unity Street.

The ancient law requiring constituencies to pay “wages” to their members of Parliament had now become virtually obsolete. The town of Hull, the only borough save Bristol that had clung to the usage, gave it up in 1678, and the example was attractive to a debt-ridden Corporation. The


Council, it is said, had demurred to Sir John Knight's claim in 1694, but had given way when that worthy threatened them with law proceedings. As a general election was approaching, the Chamber thought it advisable to bar further demands, and on August 26th it ordained that the sitting members should be paid as usual, but that no further salary should be allowed either to them or their successors. Sir John Knight received £95 13s. id. for 287 days' attendance, and Sir Richard Hart £101 13s. 4d. “in full”. In 1700, a gift of wine was made to the representatives, and presents of this kind soon became an annual civic charge.

The election just referred to took place on October 28th, when the annalists curtly record that Sir Thomas Day, then Mayor, and Robert Yate, whose mayoralty had ended at Michaelmas, were returned - no mention being made of rival candidates. The new members were zealous Whigs, and it seems unlikely that the hitherto dominant party would allow both seats to be wrested from them without a struggle. Possibly the retiring members were irritated by the abolition of “wages”, and refused to stand, but it is still improbable that the Whig candidates were permitted to “walk over”. It must be noted that the four Tory members for London were ousted by four Whigs, that sympathisers with the Jacobites lost many seats, and that devolution principles were steadily gaining ground in the Corporation of Bristol, which, though vehemently Tory at William's accession, was governed by Whigs before his death. Sir Thomas Day, one of the wealthiest merchants in the city, dwelt in the “Great House at the Bridge”, already frequently mentioned. He had also a handsome country mansion called Tilly's Court, at Barton Hill ( demolished 1894). Notwithstanding his riches and position, Sir Thomas carried on a retail business on the ground-floor of his house. By his will, dated in 1708, he directed his widow to retire from trade “and immediately to give over keeping shopp, and to lett my shopp, and to sell all my goods and wares”. His colleague in Parliament, Mr. Yate, resided in Wine Street, over the handsome archway built by a member of his family, and long known as Guard House Passage (removed 1880).

During the autumn, Mr. Edward Colston, from his retirement at Mortlake, announced his intention of conferring further benefactions on his native city. At a meeting of the Merchants' Society in October, it was announced by the Master that Mr. Colston had forwarded a proposal to


maintain six aged sailors as additional pensioners in the Society's almshouse, provided convenient rooms were built to receive them. The executors of a Mr. Richard Jones having determined to follow Colston's example by settling funds for the maintenance of six more almsmen, orders were given for the erection of the necessary buildings, and two wings, bearing the respective dates of 1696 and 1699, were joined to the original almshouse, the Corporation allowing part of the old town wall to be demolished to provide an adequate site. Another benefaction was announced to the Council in November, when thanks were voted to Mr. Colston for “having added six boys unto Queen Elizabeth's Hospital”. He had, in fact, promised to give £70 a year to the school for the maintenance of six lads until he had found a suitable estate in real property for a permanent endowment. In 1698 he conveyed to the trustees two farmhouses and 123 acres of land at Yatton and Congresbury for carrying out his proposal, expressly providing that if the number of scholars were reduced below the thirty-six to which his donation had augmented the roll, the premises conveyed by his deed should pass to the Merchants' Society. How disingenuously this injunction was evaded by the Corporation is narrated in the Annals of the Eighteenth Century.

The first volume printed at a permanently established press in Bristol was produced by William Bonny in November, 1695. It was entitled “An Essay on the State of England, in relation to its Trade, its Poor, and its Taxes. For carrying on the present War against France. By John Cary, Merchant in Bristoll. Bristoll: Printed by W. Bonny, for the Author, and are to be sold in London . . . also by Tho. Wall and Rich. Gravett, near the Tolzey, in Bristol. Novem. 1695”. The work extends over 188 pages, and as Bonny's establishment was of limited dimensions, its production must have been begun almost as soon as the printer had set up his press. His employer, John Cary, who was the son of a Bristol merchant named Shershaw Cary, and was admitted as a freeman in 1672, having served an apprenticeship to Walter Stephens, linen draper, was a man of great intelligence, some of his views on trade, finance, and pauperism being much in advance of his age. He advocated, for example, the stimulating of domestic manufactures by freeing raw materials from Customs duties, and by abolishing the Excise burdens laid on glass and other articles. He also strongly deprecated the trade


monopolies granted to the East India and Africa Companies, pleading for the concession of free trade to those regions. And he even urged the free admission of Irish food products into England, a policy then regarded as monstrous by the landed interest. On the other hand, he advocated the promotion of the English clothing trade by the suppression of the rising manufactories of Ireland, a course which unhappily met with the warm approval of Parliament. On another subject he also adopted the ideas of his contemporaries. The commerce with Africa, especially the traffic in human beings from that coast to America and the West Indies, was, he maintained, “a trade of the most advantage to this kingdom of any we drive, and as it were all profit; the first cost being little more than small matters of our own manufactures, for which we have in return gold, [elephants'] teeth, wax, and negroes, the last whereof is much better than the first, being indeed the best traffic the kingdom hath, as it doth occasionally give so vast an employment to our people both by sea and land”. Turning to other subjects, the author laments the growth of luxury and the increasing desire for idleness in the community generally, the “swarms of idle drones that fill the streets”, and the multitudinous beggars that refuse to work, prey upon the public, and bring up their families to lead a similar life. (Mr. Cary's sound ideas in reference to pauperism will be dealt with presently.) He further advises that maid-servants should be “restrained from excess of apparel”, and should not be engaged unless they bring testimonials, which “will make them more orderly and governable than they now are”; and suggests that no man-servant should be permitted to wear a sword, except when travelling, “and if all people of mean qualities were prohibited the same, 'twould be of good consequence”. The author's ideas on trade were stamped by John Locke as “the best I ever read on the subject”. The book passed through three editions, and the last, in 1745, was translated into French and Italian.

The founder of Pennsylvania paid another visit to Bristol in the closing weeks of 1695. On January 5th, 1695, he married, at the Quakers' meeting - house in the Friars, Hannah, daughter of Thomas Callowhill, recently mentioned in connection with the Hot Well. Miss Callowhill, whose mother was Hannah, daughter of Dennis Hollister, was the heiress of the latter gentleman, and as such possessed most of the estate once belonging to the Dominican Friars. Penn settled in Bristol in 1697, and resided for about two years,


during which period, it is supposed, the Friary gardens and land were laid out for building the streets still bearing the names of Penn, Pennsylvania, Hollister, and Callow hill. In 1698, William, one of Penn's sons by his first wife, was married in the above chapel to Mary, daughter of Charles Jones, the other lessee of the Hot Well. The union was an unfortunate one, as the husband, a few years later, deserted his wife, and by renouncing Quakerism rendered the marriage invalid. The founder of Pennsylvania left his American property to the children of his Bristol wife. (Amongst the many curious manuscripts in the collection of the late Mr. Sholto Hare is a letter of which the beginning and end have been lost, but which appears to have been written during the reign of James II. The writer asserts that, notwithstanding Penn's professions of piety, he long maintained an improper connection with the wife of a London haberdasher; that he afterwards pensioned her off, when she grew old, with £40 a year; and that he had then taken as a mistress the sister of a titled lady, whose name is given in the letter.)

In January, 1696, when the ordinance of 1666, forbidding “foreigners” to trade in the city, had become a dead letter, the Council, moved by Sir John Knight's invectives against intruders, solemnly revived the law issued thirty years before. A slight interpolation in the text is of interest, as denoting the march of improvement. It was ordered that after March 25th no stranger or foreigner should presume to open a shop, “either with or without glass windows”, which were evidently a novelty, on pain of forfeiting £6 for each such offence. It was much easier to pass such an ordinance than to carry it into execution. As no fines were received by the Chamberlain, it is clear that little vigour was shown in prosecuting offenders; and in October, 1699, the Chamber feebly desired the magistrates to “consider” the number of foreigners keeping shops and alehouses.

The history of the rise and progress of glass-making in Bristol seems to be entirely lost. From an official return amongst the State Papers, showing the produce of the duty on glass for the year 1695-6, it would appear that the city was one of the chief centres of the industry. The gross receipts of the duty were £17,642, but a “drawback” was allowed on the glass exported, and this deduction amounted to £2,976 at Bristol, £1,020 at Newcastle, and £840 at London.

For an adequate description of the paralysis of trade


and industry caused by the debased state of the currency at this time reference may be made to Macaulay's History. It must suffice to say here that through the clipping of the silver coinage by multitudes of knavish people, who profited largely by the roguery, the words pound and shilling had ceased to have any definite meaning. Twenty shillings of new coin weighed four ounces. But no person would pay wages or debts in new coin when old clipped shillings served his purpose; and clipped shillings were worth, on the average, less than sixpence each. As the result of a Government inquiry, it was found that £100 in silver, which when issued weighed 400 ounces, actually weighed 208 ounces in London, 240 ounces in Bristol, and only 116 ounces in Oxford. In a local test, recorded by a Bristol annalist, sixteen clipped shillings were found to be of less weight than a crown-piece of Charles II. As a natural consequence, the price of the necessaries of life greatly increased, and workmen, who had to accept their wages by tale, while their food had practically to be bought by weight, suffered lamentably under the double pillage. All classes, however, were afflicted, for as silver was the legal standard of value, business transactions of every kind fell into a state of bewilderment. Amongst the State Papers of February, 1696; is a statement of the Customs officials in Bristol to the head office in London, to the effect that they were unable to remit their receipts, as usual, by bills of exchange, business of that kind being stopped by the badness of the coin. The endeavours made to repress clipping by dealing ruthlessly with the criminals proved of little avail. In the summer of 1695, a widow named Scarlett, a shop-keeper in Thomas Street, was convicted of uttering a debased shilling, and of having instruments for clipping concealed in her house, for which offence, then called petty treason, she was sentenced to be burned in the street; but she succeeded in making her escape, and other criminals continued their practices undismayed. Urged by universal cries of distress, the Government at length resolved on an effectual reform, details of which must be sought elsewhere. Learning that the Ministry proposed to supplement the coinage at the Tower by the establishment of branch mints in some leading provincial towns, an application on behalf of Bristol was privately made to the Treasury by the members for the city, and in June, 1696, the Mayor informed the Council that works would


be set up here, providing a suitable house was furnished at the charge of the Corporation or the inhabitants. A committee was thereupon appointed “to make a bargain with Sir Thomas Day for the sugar house, and the House will find the way to pay the rent”. The “sugar house” was really the fine mansion near St. Peter's church, originally built by the Nortons and reconstructed by Robert Aldworth (see p.44). At the time under review it belonged to four co-partners, Edward Colston and Richard Beacham, of London, and Sir Thomas Day and Nathaniel Day, of Bristol. (The share of the house belonging to Nathaniel Day was soon afterwards bought by the Corporation for £230.) The coining apparatus arrived in August, amidst demonstrations of joy. In the British Museum is a unique placard, issued by the Mayor and Aldermen on August 15th, giving notice that the Government had sent down, for the benefit of the city, one thousand-weight of silver, valued at upwards of £3,000, to be coined at the new mint, and requesting the inhabitants to further the operations by furnishing old plate, for which a reward of sixpence per ounce would be paid in addition to the standard value of 5s. 2d. Holders of old hammered money were also promised a premium on the amount they sent in. How largely the invitation was responded to is attested by the fact that within about sixteen months the Bristol mint dealt with nearly two million ounces of silver, which were converted into £473,728 in coin. The produce of the other provincial mints - at York, Norwich, Chester and Exeter - reached a total of £1,340,000. Before the new coin could be put into circulation, the public, and especially the poor, were thrown into extreme distress through the want of currency to pay wages or to purchase the bare necessaries of life. In the Record Office are two petitions from Bristol to the Government: one from the Mayor and Aldermen, representing that the want of half-pence and farthings caused great clamour amongst the poor, and praying that some copper coin might be struck at the local mint; while the other, from Abraham Elton, a prosperous merchant concerned in copper-smelting, begs for permission to coin farthings and half-pence, offering £10 per ton for the privilege, 2d. per pound for making the blanks, and 3d. per pound for coinage. No response was made to either of these requests, and the suffering was protracted for several months. Near the close of 1697, when the great


work had been achieved, a Bill was brought into Parliament, providing that, after January 10th, 1698, hammered money should cease to be a legal tender, but on December 30th a petition from the Corporation of Bristol was presented to the House of Commons, setting forth that by computation there would be at least £150,000 worth of old coin brought in at the approaching fair from Wales and other places, and that great loss would be sustained if no provision were made for its re-coinage. A proviso was accordingly added to the Bill permitting old coin to be taken to the mint for re-coinage until March 1st. The estimate of the Corporation seems to have been fallacious, as no local pieces bear a later date than 1697. The mint officials, however, did not vacate the premises until June, 1698.

Early in 1696, Mr. John Cary followed up his Essay on Trade by printing at Bonny's press a folio sheet entitled:- “Proposals for the better Maintaining and Imploying the Poor of the City of Bristoll. Humbly offer'd to the consideration of the Mayor”. The copy of this broadside in the British Museum has the following note, signed by Cary:- “These were the Result of the Court or Meeting of the Citizens on the first proposalls, being as soe many Heads whereon to ground a bill to be offer'd in Parliament”. This is the only record of the meeting in question - the first public meeting known in local annals. In brief, the “proposals” offered by Cary suggested that the poor rates paid by the various city parishes should be “united into a common fund”, and that one central workhouse should take the place of the various parochial receptacles, by which arrangement the endless and costly litigation respecting “settlements” would be obviated; whilst able-bodied paupers would be compelled to work, the infirm would be properly maintained, and the young trained for honest employment. The project was discussed by the Council on February 3rd, when the magistrates were requested to sit daily, and to call for such information as they should think necessary. A Bill, “for the erecting of Hospitals and Workhouses, in the City of Bristol, for the better employing and maintaining of the Poor”, was laid before the House of Commons by Sir Thomas Day early in March, and became law during the Session; some amendments, the nature of which is unknown, being made in the Lower House. The Act ordained that on May 12th, 1696, a corporation should be established,


consisting of the Mayor and Aldermen for the time being, and of forty-eight persons to be chosen, in batches of four, by the eleven ancient wards and by the Castle Precincts (henceforth to become a ward), together with such other charitable persons as should be elected at a meeting in each ward of householders, paying one penny or more weekly of poor rates. The rate that the new corporation was empowered to levy annually was not to exceed the sum raised for the poor in 1695, save that £5,000 additional might be collected for building a workhouse. On May 19th, the date fixed by the Act, the newly elected members, amongst whom were John Cary, Sir William Daines, Thomas Callowhill, and Nathaniel Wade, assembled for the first time in St. George's Chapel, Guildhall, when Samuel Wallis, Mayor, was elected Governor; Alderman William Swymmer, Deputy-Governor; and James Harris, Treasurer. A week later a pattern for the common seal, bearing the device and motto still retained, was approved; and two committees were appointed, one to select houses in which to employ the poor, and the other to apply to the justices for the reparation and loan of “the workhouse called Whitehall”, adjoining Bridewell, for the same purpose. (The Council forthwith acceded to this application.) In June it was reported that the poor-rate assessments during the three previous years had averaged £2,230 per annum, which was about £180 less than the expenditure, and the assessment on the city was soon afterwards fixed at £44 8s. per week, or £2,308 per annum. The new body went on with its preliminary labours until September, when, to its own astonishment and that of the citizens, it was stricken with paralysis. No explanation of the collapse is to be found in the minute-books, but it appears from other sources that John Hine, who became Mayor at Michaelmas, was so bitterly hostile to the infant institution that he refused to sign the documents required to put the rating scheme in operation, and as the Act made his signature indispensable, affairs came to a deadlock for a twelvemonth. On the removal of the obstruction, the guardians resumed their labours. The furnishing of Whitehall entailed an outlay of £260, which was subscribed on loan, and 100 girls were soon lodged in the building, and taught the work of carding and spinning wool, the cost of their maintenance being fixed at 2s. per head, weekly. Dr. Thomas Dover, whose “fever powder” is still in medical repute, offered


his gratuitous services as physician to the workhouse. An economical arrangement was also made for the education of the children. A pauper widow in St. Thomas's parish was appointed to teach them to read at a salary of 6s. per week; her previous relief of 2s. 6d. a week being stopped. The house being inadequate to contain all the children needing help, a committee was appointed to select another, and this body reported, in December, that they found “none so fit or convenient for the purpose as the Mint”. Negotiations were soon after entered into with the owners of the fine old mansion, already described, and it was purchased for £800; but the Mint authorities were very unwilling to give up possession, and the Council generously voted £60, being a year's rental, pending the completion of the conveyance. The house, being at length acquired, it was resolved, in September, 1698, to fit up a chamber for the meetings of the board. The beautiful Jacobean sitting-room, erected by Aldworth, was selected for this purpose; and the members, on October 30th, began an occupation that was continued by their successors for almost exactly two hundred years. The guardians were soon plunged in fresh troubles. Under the old system of pauper relief the parochial overseers had control of the funds, and enjoyed the prestige of alms-givers. Annoyed at the loss of their influence, the officials of fifteen out of the eighteen parishes flatly refused to collect the rates, and the provisions of the Act were again found defective. But the obstacle was speedily overcome by legal ingenuity and the sympathy of Parliament. Two clauses were introduced (at a cost of £7 9s. 4d.) into a Tiverton Workhouse Bill, then before the House of Commons, under which the Bristol Corporation of the Poor were empowered to over-ride the obstructiveness of a stupid Mayor, and to levy distresses upon recalcitrant overseers. Vigorous measures were then taken for the training of 100 boys to weave “fustians and calimancoes”; the lads were dressed in blue coats and white leather breeches; the porter's wife was ordered to teach them to read; and a due provision was made of disciplinary apparatus, including a pair of stocks, a whipping-post, and a place of confinement, significantly styled Purgatory, garnished with chains and fetterlocks. Severe punishment was not reserved for juvenile delinquents alone. In January, 1698, a vagrant from the county of Durham was brought before the board, and having


admitted that he had long lived by begging, he was ordered to be committed to Bridewell, and there kept at work “for the space of three years, unless this Court doth otherwise order”. Several other tramps received a similar sentence, and the severity of the proceedings led to a general flight of roving mendicants; but the board probably discovered that they were exceeding their powers, or complaint was made as to the cost of maintaining the vagabonds, for the commitments were soon abandoned. The expenditure of the new institution considerably exceeded the amount collected from the ratepayers, and a subscription was started by its leading supporters to meet the deficit. The sum thus raised reached about £1,800, of which Sir John Duddleston, Sir William Daines, Samuel Wallis, Edward Tyson, M.D., Edward Martindale, Robert Yate, Thomas Edwards, George Mason, R. Bayly, Abraham Elton, Thomas Callowhill, William Swymmer, Peter Saunders, and Edward Colston contributed £100 each, and were elected honorary guardians. Out of these donations, £160 were paid for the purchase of a house adjoining the Mint, which was fitted up as a school. In 1700 a pamphlet, dedicated to both Houses of Parliament, was published in London, entitled “An Account of the Proceedings of the Corporation of Bristol in Execution of the Act of Parliament for the better Employing and Maintaining the Poor of that City”. The author, John Cary, narrated the story of the institution in moderate yet forcible terms. The boys, he said, were being trained to gain an honest livelihood, and their labours were bringing in £6 per week towards their maintenance; the girls were also doing well, and the aged poor and beggars were kept from idleness and mendicity. About 300 persons were under the care of the guardians. “The success hath answered our expectation. . . . The face of our city is changed already”; and the writer ventured to hope that the example of Bristol would be widely followed. A continuation of the history of the incorporation will be found in the Annals of the Eighteenth Century. All that need be added here is that the establishment of the first “Poor Law Union” in England Was creditable to the intelligence and public spirit of its promoters, and was, both socially and economically, a step far in advance of the narrow prejudices of the age.

In the last week of February, 1696, the country was startled by the discovery of a Jacobite plot for the


assassination of the King and the overthrow of the Government. As in the case of the Eye House affair, it was soon found that there were two plots, one within the other. The design of the original and greater confederacy was to promote an open insurrection, to be supported by a French army; and of this plot all the leading Jacobites had full knowledge, and many had promised their co-operation. The inner plot was carried on by about forty bravoes, and had for its main object the cold-blooded murder of King William. This project had the usual fate of English assassination schemes. Some of the villains betrayed the rest, and about half the gang were arrested a few hours before the time fixed for the tragedy, when much information as to the insurrection scheme was at once brought to light. The disclosures caused a national thrill of horror unprecedented since the time of Guy Fawkes. The magistrates of Bristol ordered the city gates to be closed, suspicious-looking strangers were arrested, and the zeal of the working classes, stimulated by the rewards offered for traitors, outran that of the authorities. The Government, in the meantime, were not idle, and the minutes of the Privy Council show that some Bristol Jacobites were suspected of as much complicity in the insurrection plot as was proved against Sir John Friend, the rich London brewer, who was afterwards executed. On February 28th their lordships issued a warrant for the arrest of Sir John Knight, Sir Richard Hart, and two men named Davis and Moor. Subsequently Sir William Clutterbuck was carried up to London in custody. No record is preserved of their examination, but it would appear that evidence against them was not forthcoming, and they were liberated after several weeks' detention. On May 13th, however, the Privy Council sent down a fresh warrant against Sir John Knight, who was immured in a London gaol until August 27th, when the Privy Council ordered his discharge, “he being dangerously ill”. In the British Museum is a broadsheet, printed by Bonny, headed “The Humble Presentment of the Grand Inquest at Midsummer Sessions, 1696”, in which thanks are tendered to the Mayor (Samuel Wallis) and the Aldermen for their “zealous and prudent administration of the city during a crisis of great danger”. The “Association” for defence of the Government - a movement common to the whole kingdom - met with enthusiastic support, and the Bristol printer was required to provide seventeen large sheets of parchment for the signatures of those who rushed to volunteer their


adherence to the royal cause. Although the matter for a time so completely monopolised public attention as to suspend commercial business, the local chroniclers refrained from even an allusion to it, and it is ignored by Barrett and other historians.

A Bill promoted by the Corporation of Bath, for powers to make the Avon navigable from Bristol to that city, was laid before Parliament in December; and a petition in its favour was presented from merchants and tradesmen of Bristol, who alleged that the scheme would be advantageous to trade. But a strong opposition was organized by the landowners around Bath, who contended that the markets would be glutted with cheap provisions from Bristol, causing a fall of rents, whilst carriers, innkeepers, and labourers would be utterly ruined. The justices and grand jury at Somerset Assizes re-echoed these predictions, averring that landowners were already suffering greatly from the glut of corn carried from Bristol on horseback to the markets at Warminster, Chippenham, and Devizes. The Bill was dropped, but was revived in the session of 1699-1700, the promoters avowing that their chief object was to reduce the excessive price of provisions in Bath. The Corporation of Bristol petitioned in favour of the scheme, but it was unpopular amongst the citizens, and a petition against it professed to represent the feelings of “many thousands”; while the bakers alleged that they would be unable to grind their corn if deprived of the mills on the Avon, and the innkeepers complained that they were threatened with ruin. The really formidable opposition, however, was that of the county gentry, who repeated their former lamentations with increased vigour; and as a Parliament of landlords naturally sympathised with the monopolists, the Bill was again withdrawn.

An attempt to maintain a monopoly in another branch of trade met with a very different reception in the city. Commerce with the west coast of Africa, which consisted largely in bartering metals, cotton goods, and spirits for negro slaves destined for the plantations, had been vested by Charles II. in the hands of a few London merchants, to whom he granted a patent of exclusive privileges under the style of the Royal African Company. As the trade of Bristol was rapidly developing with the West Indies, local merchants naturally felt aggrieved at being excluded from a share in what was the most lucrative traffic with the islands; and although positive evidence on the point


has perished, it is certain that they, and others, sent vessels to the Slave Coast, and carried on a large contraband business, in despite of the Company's denunciations of interlopers. The passing of the Act of 1689, known as the Declaration of Rights, put an end to all trade monopolies created by royal charters, and Bristol merchants lost no time in entering largely into slave enterprises. The Company nevertheless possessed great advantages in holding the forts and settlements on the coast, the protection of which was refused to outsiders, and sometimes set the law at defiance by driving off their competitors. These measures proving ineffectual, the Company, in 1696, applied to Parliament for a statutable revival of their former chartered rights, and forthwith met with a determined opposition. The Bristol merchants, in a petition to the Commons, alleged that the prosperity of the West India planters depended upon a plentiful supply of negroes (the annual shipment of the Company was limited to 3,000 slaves), and that the deficient import could be remedied only by the enterprise of English merchants generally. The clothiers and weavers of the city, in another petition, expatiated on the importance of their exports to the Slave Coast, and on the disastrous consequences that would arise if this market were closed. Similar appeals were made by other ports, and the West India planters were of course in favour of a free trade in slaves. After a struggle at Westminster, an Act was passed, in 1698, leaving the trade open to provincial ports, but requiring non-members of the Company to contribute a moderate sum towards the maintenance of the forts. The bitter controversy of the following century is narrated elsewhere.

Owing to great depression in the clothing trade, the Society of Friends established an independent “workhouse” in 1696. The chief object aimed at was to assist unemployed Quaker weavers, but in addition to the working inmates accommodation was provided for some aged and infirm members. The workhouse, still standing, was completed in 1698, at a cost of £1,300. Somewhat later, a number of boys were admitted, who received some education, and were taught to weave “cantaloons”; but the manufacture was abandoned about 1721, when the building was given up exclusively to the aged and impotent.

The civic accounts for December, 1696, contain the following item:- “Paid for a bull rope, 5s. 7d.”, which is followed a few months later by:- “Paid for a collar to bait bulls in


the Marsh, 6s.” Bull-baiting was then a fashionable sport in England, and continued long popular. A Bill to suppress the practice was rejected by the House of Commons in 1802, and in 1804 the Rev. Thomas Johnes, rector of St. John's, Bristol, and City Librarian, read a paper before a local literary club, in which he contended that bull-baiting “was not only legal but exceedingly correct and useful to society” (R. Smith's MSS.). After the laying out of Queen's Square, the city bull-ring was removed to some vacant ground in St. Philip's parish, now the site of St. Jude's Church.

The loss of the early Quarter Sessions records has deprived posterity of much curious information. The earliest surviving book begins in 1696, when, by order of the justices, a three months' contribution from St. Philip's parish towards the poor rates was ordered to be levied on five of the central parishes on account of the poverty of the eastern district. In August, 1697, the Sheriffs were fined five nobles (£1 13s. 4d.) for “not burning Isaac Tucker, according to sentence”. This really means that Tucker, a thief, had been sentenced to be branded on the cheek with a red-hot iron, and that the Sheriffs' officers, probably for a bribe, had applied the branding-iron in a cold state. Soon afterwards, the Sheriffs were fined 40s. “for not causing two Women to be well burnt”; and the increased fine being still ineffectual, it was on the next occasion raised to £5. Whipping, often carried out to an extent that threatened the life of the culprit, was much in the favour of the justices. In May, 1698, a man, whose offence is not stated, was ordered to stand in the pillory for three hours as a target for the malevolence of the rabble, and to be thrice whipped - once from Newgate to St. Mark's Lane, once from Newgate to the great sun-dial on the Broad Quay, and a third time from the gaol to Lawford's Gate, “and back again”. At the same session, a woman, for forging a marriage certificate, was ordered to be lashed on the naked back from the Council House to the bottom of the Quay. Householders were frequently fined for allowing their pigs to rove about the streets. In addition to their ordinary Junctions, the justices continued to fix the price of bread, and punished bakers who presumed to disobey the regulations.

One of the many ill-devised schemes of Parliament for the suppression of pauperism became law in the session of 1697. It enacted that all persons receiving parish relief, irrespective of age or sex, should wear, upon the right shoulder of their outer garment, a badge of red or blue cloth, bearing


the letter P. and the initial letter of their parish, on pain, in default, of forfeiting their relief, or of being committed to prison, whipped, and kept for three weeks to hard labour. Churchwardens relieving an unbadged person were to forfeit 20s. The St. Stephen's vestry, on August 31st, resolved that the poor of that parish should “ware bages” with the letters T.P./S.S; The orthography indicates the educational standard of the time, when it was not uncommon for a churchwarden to be unable to write his name.

The Peace of Eyswick, by which France acknowledged William III. as King of England, was proclaimed at Bristol on October 29th amidst great demonstrations of joy. The corporate body, with a long train of citizens, accompanied the Sheriffs to the High Cross, St. Peter's Cross, Temple Cross, St. Thomas's Conduit, and the conduit on the Quay, at each of which places the glad tidings were proclaimed amidst the roaring of cannon, the firing of salutes by the militia, the fantasias of musicians, and the pealing of bells. Flags were plentifully displayed (except upon the church towers); the conduits ran wine, and many leading citizens feasted their friends; while at night the city was ablaze with bonfires, fireworks and illuminations. The Jacobites were deeply mortified by the French King's desertion of their cause, and refused to join in the general display, but the populace were good-humoured, and the day passed over without disturbance.

On the petition of many Quakers, still debarred from the freedom owing to their objection to take the oath of a burgess, the Council, in November, allowed them to be admitted on making a solemn affirmation. The Society of Merchants were more conservative in sentiment. Quakers were for some years regarded as absolutely inadmissible to the Company, which even rejected the application of Stephen Peloquin, the wealthy Huguenot merchant.

From the establishment of posts in the reign of Charles II. down to this time, letters from Devon and Cornwall to Bristol were sent from Exeter, by way of Salisbury, to London, and thence forwarded to their address, involving extra postage and much delay. After repeated appeals to the Government, a “cross post” was established between Exeter and Bristol for inland letters in 1698, thus substituting a journey of under 80 miles for one of nearly 300. But the mails from the West Indies and America, landed at Falmouth, were excluded from the arrangement, to the great prejudice of local merchants, nor was any reform


conceded in this respect for nearly a century. The cross post was a financial success, as it captured the large correspondence previously conducted by carriers; and at Michaelmas, 1700, the postal authorities started a similar mail between this city and Worcester, Shrewsbury, and Chester, superseding the roundabout journey via London. In this case also, however, Bristol letters to and from Ireland were excluded from the scheme. Even so late as 1746, when strong expostulations were addressed to the Post Office, Ralph Allen, of Bath, who had the control of the western mails, refused to allow a direct communication, but offered, if the postage from Dublin to London were paid, to convey the letters to Bristol gratis!

Under the provisions of the Triennial Act, the writs for a new Parliament were issued in the summer of 1698. The election proceedings at Bristol began early in August, and concluded on the 10th. Five candidates entered the field - the retiring Whig members, Sir Thomas Day and Robert Yate, the two High Tories, Sir John Knight and Sir Richard Hart, and John Cary, who was probably brought forward by a section of the Whigs dissatisfied with Sir Thomas Day. The suspected complicity of Knight and Hart in the Jacobite conspiracy of 1696 seems to have lost them many supporters, and their former popularity did not save them from a crushing defeat. The final state of the poll was as follows:- Mr. Yate, 1,136; Sir Thomas Day, 976; Sir John Knight, 786; Sir Richard Hart, 421; Mr. Cary, 279.

The first local allusion to gin-drinking appears in the presentment of the grand jury at the autumn quarter sessions. The document set forth the great distress of the poor caused by the high price of grain, an evil alleged to be due to the large quantity of malt used for the distillation of spirits, telling the more heavily on the labouring man, inasmuch as his bread and his favourite drink were chiefly made from barley. The presentment was approved by the Council in November, when a petition to Parliament was resolved upon, and soon afterwards an Act was passed restraining distillation and prohibiting the export of beer. Gin- drinking nevertheless became a mania in the following century.

At the Council meeting just referred to, Mr. Yate, M.R T brought forward a serious indictment against the civic Chamberlain, John Cooke, whom he charged with injustice, negligence, and incapacity in fulfilling the duties of his office. The minute-book states that “Mr. Chamberlain was


present at the time, but gave no satisfactory answer”. A resolution that he should be “removed and displaced” seems to have been carried unanimously. He was succeeded on November 22nd by Edward Tocknell, a Councillor. (James Millerd, the author of the plans of the city, was a defeated candidate.) Cooke, whose delinquencies were not of a financial character, and who was Master of the Merchants' Society in 1691-2, has won a lasting fame by adding, in 1693, the tower known as his “Folly” to his country house at Sneyd. A few words as to this mansion, based on deeds in the Council House, may perhaps be of interest. In 1590, one of Cooke's ancestors, Bartholomew Cooke, obtained two separate leases of land for long terms, comprising Sneyd Park proper, Sea Mills, and the pastures on which the suburb now known as Sneyd Park was afterwards built. The entire estate had originally belonged to the bishopric of Worcester, but had been wrested from the see by that insatiable church plunderer, Sir Ralph Sadleir, in the reign of Henry VIII. The leases were at later periods succeeded by conveyances in fee; indeed, so early as 1615, John Cooke, son of Bartholomew, apparently dealt with part of the property as owner. From the outset, the mansion and park known as Old Sneyd were distinguished from a pasture of forty acres, together with some adjoining closes, described in a deed of 1619 as “lying in a corner of the park, on the top of the hill, adjoining Durdam Down, or the Spectacles, and the river of Avon”, where John Cooke had already built himself a house. (The Spectacles, called in other records the Giant's Spectacles, was a quarry, known in later times as the Black Rock.) Old Sneyd Park was not alienated until about the time of the Civil War by Sadleir's representative, the purchaser being Alderman Joseph Jackson, of Bristol, who rebuilt or greatly extended the “capital mansion” there, the present portal of which bears the Jackson arms. But that Mr. Chamberlain Cooke retained the house and lands “on the top of the hill” is proved by his erection of the “Folly”. Early in 1699, the High Cross was restored and elaborately decorated at the cost of the Corporation. The sum of £61 was paid for gold-leaf, oil and colours, a shop was hired in which to grind the paint, and £67 were disbursed for wages. These and other items indicate the revival of the old civic predilection for display. In April, John Cosley, goldsmith, received £8 5s. for “gilding the Sunday scabbard”, and in May, Richard Cosley was paid £6 3s. for “new making and gilding the Mourning scabbard”, whilst £29 were laid out


on new and gorgeous dresses for the two city trumpeters. In the summer the unprecedented outlay of £38 was incurred in a perambulation of the civic boundaries in the Severn, and in autumn the ancient pastime of fishing in the Froom was revived at a cost of £5 3s. 4d. In the result, the year's expenditure exceeded the income by nearly £450, and retrenchments were found necessary. The trumpeters' old trappings were ordered to be sold, and the gold lace with which they were bedizened, together with the silver trumpets, was disposed of for £24 16s. The musicians had to fall back on the old copper trumpets of earlier days, and doubtless met with many jeers on the diminution of their finery.

A new source of income, discovered towards the end of the year, soon helped to alleviate the civic embarrassment. On October 23rd the Mayor acquainted the Council that the Rev. John Reade, D.D., vicar of St. Nicholas, had made a proposal to build a house in the Marsh, and his worship added that, from reports he had received, several other citizens were desirous of following this example. A committee was therefore appointed to lay out the ground for building sites, and to treat for their disposal. Such was the origin of the stately pile of buildings, afterwards styled Queen Square, as it is recorded in the Council minutes. But it is clear that the design must have been carefully elaborated before the Mayor's statement was made, for on October 27th, only four days later, an agreement was executed, by which a plot of ground was demised on lease to Dr. Reade, “as it is now laid out and allotted by the city officers”. The site had a frontage of 40 feet with a depth of 105 feet. The house was to be of brick (the first authentic mention of that material for local building purposes), with stone quoins, was to be 40 feet in height, and was to form one corner of the eastern side of an intended square. The lease was for five lives, at a rent of 40s., being one shilling per foot of frontage. (At a later date the lease was converted into one for 53 years, and by another alteration, in 1732, all the leases were made renewable every 14 years in perpetuity, on payment at each renewal of one year's rack-rent.) The second applicant for ground was James Hollidge, one of the Sheriffs, and afterwards Mayor, who took three sites on the east side of the square. The Bowling Green covered part of this ground, and Hollidge paid £100 for the “house of entertainment” erected there for the players. He subsequently built several houses on the south side. Amongst the next lessees were


some leading merchants - John Day, Joseph Earle, Abraham Elton, Nathaniel Day and Woodes Rogers. The last-named became afterwards famous for his privateering voyage round the world.

Disabled by pecuniary difficulties from reconstructing the Council House, the Chamber, in October, 1699, ordered that the building should be “amended and repaired”. The resolution was never acted upon, and it must have been evident that nothing short of demolition would effectually remedy the discomforts so long endured. See Annals of the Eighteenth Century, p.59.

Mention has been made of the journey to London taken by each successive Mayor for the purpose of being sworn in, entailing a yearly outlay of £30. The Recorder, Serjeant Powlett, residing within easy distance in Monmouthshire, the Council from motives of economy invited him to Bristol to tender the oaths, which he was legally entitled to do; and in October, when he had thrice complied, he was voted £20 for his trouble.

The Jacobite principles cherished by the Duke of Ormond disabled him from rendering those services at Court which were always expected from a Lord High Steward, and his official connection with the city seems to have been ignored for some years. At Whitsuntide, 1697, however, the Corporation were lucky enough to obtain two butts of sherry as prisage, when three-fourths of this windfall appear to have been despatched to the Duke. And in December, 1699, the Council gave orders that a gross of the best sherry should be sent to his grace “in lieu of all arrears of salary”. A gift of wine was also made on that occasion to the members of Parliament for the city, the total outlay being £30.

In the Parliamentary session of 1699-1700, the Corporation made an apparent effort to fulfil their functions by seeking powers “for cleansing, paving and enlightening the streets” of the city. No information as to the framing of the scheme is to be found in the civic minute-books, but an examination of the clauses of the Act clearly demonstrates that the real object aimed at was to relieve the Corporation from all responsibility or expense in regard to street police. The statute required householders and churchwardens to cleanse the thoroughfares adjoining their dwellings and churches twice a week, and to maintain a scavenger to remove refuse. As regarded paving, occupiers and churchwardens were to pitch or pave one half of the


streets fronting their premises, but tenants were empowered to deduct the outlay from their rent. (No provision was made for thoroughfares that had houses only on one side. The Horse Fair, from this cause, soon became “very foundrous and ruinous”, and the Council were forced to vote £15 for its repair.) The civic rulers did not at first propose to interfere with the existing system of lighting, by which a few hundred candles were exhibited until nine o'clock at night; but on second thoughts additional clauses were introduced during the progress of the Bill, one of which enacted that householders paying twopence or more weekly as poor rate should, from Michaelmas to Lady Day, set out candles, in lanterns, nightly from dusk to midnight, on pain of forfeiting 2s. for each default. If the householders of any parish chose to carry out this lighting arrangement by means of a rate, they were empowered to do so, but the Council disclaimed all responsibility in the matter. It will be seen that the streets were to remain in utter darkness at night for six months in every year. The Bill received the Royal Assent in March, 1700, out its provisions did not come into operation until January, 1701. In the meantime, the Corporation made the customary grant of £1 4s. for two lights - at the Quay and Blind Gate - then its only effort to lessen the nightly perils of wayfarers, the lamp at the Council House having been discontinued. The new Act further empowered the civic body to levy fines on glass-makers, copper-smelters, and others, for throwing refuse into the two rivers, which, says the preamble of the statute, were the receptacles of most of the ashes and filth of the city. The cost of obtaining the Act was £121.

The Council, in January, 1700, resolved on relieving the treasurer of Queen Elizabeth's Hospital of the duty of supervising the maintenance and clothing of the boys, and made an agreement with Mr. Cobb, the schoolmaster, under which the thirty-six lads were “farmed” to the latter at £9 3s. 4d. per head yearly, for which they were to be fed, clothed, and educated. The master received no salary under this arrangement, and he had also to pay the wages of three female servants. As Mr. Colston provided £70 a year for the maintenance of six boys, Cobb's bargain was evidently a very good one for his employers. In compensation, the Council allowed the master a further sum of £8 per annum for collecting the rents of the charity, not merely in the city, but from numerous tenants at Congresbury and Yatton - an occupation somewhat incompatible with


attention to his proper duties. It is not surprising to find indications that the scale of education in the school had sunk below the original standard. A weekly visitation by members of the Council was ordered, to see that the boys were properly treated, and the Mayor and Aldermen made an annual inspection, when one of the lads sang an anthem, instead of delivering an oration, as in former times. The performer, with each of the eight senior boys, had a gift of a shilling; the others received threepence each, and there was a distribution of cake and fruit. The plentiful supply of wine sent in on each occasion was doubtless consumed by the visitors. In December, 1700, the Council increased the number of scholars to forty, and raised the masters allowance to £9 10s. per head.

Down to this period, letters forwarded by post to Bristol were dealt with at the Post House - namely, the house at which the postboys stabled their horses; and local letters for London, and elsewhere, were left at the same place for the next despatch. The Post House was for several years at the Dolphin inn, which long afterwards gave its name to Dolphin Street. In 1700 the Government found it desirable to establish an independent Post Office, and negotiations were entered into with the Corporation, the result of which appears in the civic Bargain Book, dated June 22nd:- “Then agreed by the surveyors of the city lands with Henry Pine, Deputy Postmaster, that he the said Henry Pine shall have hold and enjoy the ground whereon now stands a shedd having therein four severall shopps, scituate in All Saints Lane, and as much more ground at the lower end of the same shedd as that the whole ground shall contain in length twenty seven foot, and to contain in breadth from the outside of the churchyard wall five foot and a half outward into the lane, with liberty to build upon the same for the conveniency of a post office (viz.) the first story to come forth into the said lane to the extent of that ground and no farther, and the second story to have a truss of 18 inches over the lane, or more, as the said surveyors shall think fitt, that persons coming to the post office may have shelter from the rain and stand in the dry. To hold the same from Michaelmas next for 60 years absolute, under the yearly rent of 30s. clear of taxes”. The subsequent history of the office is given in the annals of the following century. The accommodation provided in the above bargain, limited as it was, doubtless met all the requirements of the time. Only three mail bags were


received from and despatched to London weekly, and the only other mails of which there is a record were those to Chester and Exeter, bi-weekly. With the exception of the intermediate towns on the three routes, Bristol letters from and to all parts of England, as well as Ireland and Scotland, were transmitted via London, often involving double postage rates and much delay. Cirencester, for example, was then an important centre of the wool trade, and was only about forty miles distant, yet correspondence had to travel upwards of two hundred miles, and ten days frequently elapsed between the despatch of a letter and the receipt of an answer.

The merciless severity of the criminal code, under which young children, if convicted of petty thefts, were necessarily sentenced to death, has been noticed in a previous page. As the carrying out of such sentences would have been revolting to public feeling, it became the practice after every assizes to draw up a memorial to the King, containing the names of those thought worthy of a reprieve, and praying for their pardon. The expense of such acts of grace was, however, considerable, owing to the fees demanded by legal and Court officials. In June, the Council ordered that £14 should be paid towards the charges of the local pardons for the previous two years, but that no further grant should be made on that account. The intention was obviously to lay the burden on the friends of the convicts, but many had no friends capable of meeting the charge, and the Corporation were frequently compelled to intervene. It is probable that many of the “pardoned” felons were ultimately transported as slaves to the plantations.

The Council, in August, voted £100 to Balliol College, Oxford, towards the charge of building chambers for the accommodation of exhibitioners sent up from Bristol Grammar School to the University. The College returned a cordial letter of thanks, and promised to take every care of the young men, many of whom were subsequently educated there.

An odd item occurs at this time in the Chamberlain's accounts:- “Paid Alderman Wallis for the scarlet cloth which is put on the Mayor's pew Sundays, £5”. The Mayor attended many churches in the course of his year of office, and presumably the emblazonment was carried about from one building to another, according to his directions.

In an age when business ordinarily began at six o'clock in the morning it is not surprising that the Corporation were promoters of early closing. In 1699 the Council had


ordained that butchers and greengrocers should remove from the streets at seven o'clock in the winter half-year and at eight in summer. These hours being considered demoralizing, it was now ordered that the dealers in the Broad Street market should depart one hour earlier in each half-year. Inns and alehouses were closed at nine o'clock in the winter and ten in the summer months. As nearly all the shop fronts were unprotected with glass windows, candles could not be kept lighted in windy weather, and thieves were offered such facility for stealing that many traders appear to have closed at dusk.

The Council, in the autumn, resolved on reviving the entertainment of the judges of assize, and £22 4s. were paid to Sir Thomas Day, whose “great house at the Bridge” was offered for the occasion to Mr. Justice Powell. The judge must have had an enormous retinue, for £5 15s. were paid for the stabling and food of his horses. Looking about for funds to meet these and other expenses, the city rulers laid for the last time a heavy hand on “foreigners”, apparently more numerous than ever. Having been given the option of taking up the freedom on payment of fines, or of having their places of business “shut down”, many of the intruders consented to the former alternative, and upwards of £160 was netted by the Chamberlain. A merchant paid a fine of £35, a chirurgeon £20, a cork-cutter and a saddler £15 each, a tailor, a bricklayer, and a stone-carver £10 each, and a milliner and two wigmakers £8 each. A few tradesmen were more liberally dealt with under exceptional circumstances. Thus a brushmaker was admitted gratis because there was no other in the city, and a similar grace accorded to a furrier and a patten-maker was probably due to the same cause. Then a watchmaker was permitted to open a shop, and was eventually voted the freedom, in consequence of his offering “a curious watch and dyall plate, to be set up in the Tolzey, and undertaking to keep same in repair during his life”. (This time-piece, still in excellent order, is now in the office of the city Treasurer.) In November a curious entry occurs in the minutes:- “There being a confederacy between the cooks now in the city, it is ordered, that in case any able cooks come from London, the Mayor and Aldermen have liberty to admit them into the freedom”. As there is no further reference to the matter, the “confederacy” was probably broken up; but the glaring inconsistency of the corporate decree with the general policy adopted towards strangers seems to have given a final blow to the long-cherished system of


persecution. In 1703, when all the civic bye-laws were revised by a committee for the purpose of cancelling such as were obsolete or prejudicial, the ordinance forbidding the intrusion of “foreigners” was significantly ordered “to be left out”.

A few remarks on the general condition and policy of the Corporation will bring the annals of the century to a close. It seems only too certain that the civic body had deteriorated during the period that has been under review. In the year ending Michaelmas, 1601, the corporate income amounted to only £928, which was about £300 below the average in the later years of Elizabeth; while the expenditure was £690, or about the normal amount of the period. As a general rule there was a considerable surplus, and by dint of continuous prudent management the Council were from time to time enabled to add largely by purchases to the civic estates. The Civil War necessarily entailed heavy burdens on the Corporation, but the liabilities thus incurred might have been cleared off if the large receipts flowing from the Castle Precincts and new King Street had been devoted to that purpose. At the Restoration, however, the economy of the Puritan age became as distasteful to the Royalist Council as its political sentiments, and chronic recklessness and extravagance brought about their customary results. In the ten years ending 1700, the average yearly income had increased to about £3,000, but although all the charges for police, paving, lighting, and other municipal services were repudiated, the expenditure was greater than the receipts. Property to the value of about £8,000 had been disposed of, yet the Corporation, at the end of the century, were burdened with a debt of over £10,000, and had moreover to pay about £190 yearly to various charities, the original capital represented by that sum - about £3,800 - having in some way disappeared. The effect of monetary troubles on civic morality is eloquently attested by one of the latest entries in the minute-book of the year. Pressed by clamorous creditors, the Council thought proper to make a raid on the funds of Queen Elizabeth's Hospital. The sum of £700 had been borrowed from the Hospital in 1682, and £630 had become due for eighteen years' interest on the loan. But the Chamber, reviving the old fiction of a debt due from the charity - of which nothing had been said for ninety-four years, and which, if a fact, would have justified the appropriation of the £700 as a repayment on account - repudiated payment of the interest, and coolly alleged that such repudiation was “done with very great equity and good conscience”.


With date of Consecration.

The see was vacant from 1598 to 1603.

1603August. John Thornborough, translated to Worcester, 1617.
1617December. Nicholas Pelton, translated to Ely, 1618.
1619May. Rowland Searchfield, died October 11, 1622.
1623March. Robert Wright, translated to Lichfield, 1633.
1633February. George Coke, translated to Hereford, 1636.
1637January. Robert Skinner, translated to Oxford, 1641.
1642June. Thomas Weatfield, died June 25, 1644.
1645April. Thomas Howell, died 1646.
1661January. Gilbert Ironside, died September 19, 1671.
1672February. Guy Carleton, translated to Chichester, 1679.
1679February. William Gulston, died April 4, 1684.
1684August. John Lake, translated to Chichester, 1685.
1685November. Sir Jonathan Trelawny, Bt., translated to Exeter, 1689.
1689October. Gilbert Ironside, translated to Hereford, 1691.
1691August. John Hall, died February 4, 1710.


1598March. Simon Robson, died June, 1617.
1617June. Edward Chetwynd, died May 18, 1639.
1639June. Matthew Nicholls, resigned, 1660.
1660July. Henry Glemham, appointed Bishop of St. Asaph, 1667.
1667May. Richard Towgood, died April 28, 1683.
1683May. Samuel Crossman, died February 4, 1684.
1684May. Richard Thompson, died November 29, 1685.
1686January. William Levett, died February 11, 1694.
1694March. George Royse, died April, 1708.


(The civic dignitaries, under the old charters, entered upon office on September 29th.)

1600John Hopkins, merchantJohn Boulton, Thomas Hopkins
1601William Vawer, cardmakerWilliam Hopkins, John Fowens
1602Ralph Horte, grocerJohn Aldworth, Thomas Farmer
1603John Whitson, merchantWilliam Barnes, George Richards
1604Christ. Kedgwin, grocerWilliam Cole, George Harrington
1605Thomas James, merchantJohn Rowberowe, John Guy
1606John Barker, merchant; Richard Smith,* tannerThomas Packer, John Doughty
1607Matthew Haviland, merchantRobert Rogers, Arthur Needes
1608John Butcher, draperThomas Moore, William Young
1609Robert Aldworth, merchantThomas Aldworth, Wm. Challoner
1610John Eaglesfield, mercerThomas Whitehead, William Pytte
1611William Cary, draperWilliam Burrus, Henry Gibbes
1612Abel Kitchen, merchantChristopher Cary, John Barker
1613Francis KnightChristopher Whitson, John Gonning
1614Thomas James, merchantJohn Langton, Humphrey Hooke
1615John Whitson, merchantWilliam Baldwyne, John Tomlinson
 * See page 88.
1616Thomas FarmerHenry Yate, Henry Hobson
1617George Harrington, brewerMatthew Warren, William Turner
1618John Guy, merchantThomas Cecill, Thomas Wright
1619Thomas PackerWm. Lyssett, Humphrey Browne
1620John Doughty, mercerAndrew Charlton, Peter Miller
1621Robert Rogers, soapmakerRichard Holworthy, Richard Long
1622William Young, draperEdward Coxe, William Jones
1623William Pitt, draperOliver Snell, Ezekiel Wallis
1624Henry Gibbes, brewerWm. Pitt, jun. (died), Nath. Butcher, Thos. Clements
1625John Barker, merchantGeorge Knight, John Taylor
1626Chris. Whitson, sugar refinerJohn Lock, Walter Ellis
1627John Gonning, merchantRichard Plea, Richard Aldworth
1628John Langton, merchantAlex. James, Francis Creswick
1629Humphrey Hooke, merchantGiles Elbridge, Thomas Colston
1630John Tomlinson, merchantDerrick Popley, Gabriel Sherman
1631Henry Yate, soapmakerJohn Gonning, jun., Miles Jackson
1632Henry Hobson, innkeeperThomas Jackson, Wm. Fitzherbert
1633Matthew Warren, clothierRobert Elliot, Thomas Lloyd
1634Andrew Charlton, merchantJohn Langton, Thomas Hooke
1635Rich. Holworthy, merchantWilliam Cann, William Hobson
1636Richard Long, merchantRichard Vickris, Thos. Woodward
1637William Jones, grocerEdw. Peters (died), Wm. Wyat, Ab. Edwards
1638Ezekiel Wallis, draperLuke Hodges, George Hellier
1639George Knight, draperMatthew Warren, Walter Deyos
1640John Taylor, merchantHenry Gibbes, Edward Pitt
1641John Lock, merchantRichard Balman, Robert Yeamans
1642Richard Aldworth, mercerJoseph Jackson, Hugh Browne
1643Humph. Hooke, merchantHenry Creswick, William Colston
1644Alex. James, merchantNathaniel Cale, William Be van
1645Francis Creswick, merchant; John Gonning,* merchantJohn Young, Walter Stevens
1646Richard Vickris, merchantWalter Sandy, Edward Tyson
1647Gabriel Sherman, merchantArthur Farmer, George White
1648William Cann, merchantRobert Challoner, Robert Yate
1649Miles Jackson, merchantWilliam Dale, William Yeamans
1650Hugh Browne, merchantJames Croft, George Hart
1651Jos. Jackson, merchantGeorge Lane, Robert Cann
1652Henry Gibbes, draperThos. Amory, Jonathan Blackwell
1653George Hellier, ironmongerJohn Pope, Thomas Bubb
1654John Gonning, merchantJohn Lawford, Christopher Griffith
1655Walter Deyos, merchantThomas Harris, John Bowen
1656Richard Balman, brewerRobert Vickris, John Harper
1657Arthur Farmer, brewerJohn Willoughby, Henry Appleton
1658Walter Sandy, ironmongerEdward Morgan, Nehemiah Collins
1659Edward Tyson, merchantFrancis Gleed, Timothy Parker
1660Henry Creswick, merchantRichard Gregson, Thomas Langton
1661Nathaniel Cale, chandlerThomas Stevens, John Hickes
1662Sir Robt. Cann, Bart., merchantJohn Wright, Robert Yeamans
1663Sir John Knight (I.), merchantJohn Bradway, Richard Streamer
1664John Lawford, grocerJohn Knight, jun., Ralph Olliffe
1665John Willoughby, merchantWilliam Crabb, Richard Crumpe
1666(Sir) Thos. Langton, merchantJohn Lloyd, Joseph Creswick
 * See page 294.
1667Edward Morgan, upholsterHy. Gough, John Aldworth (died), Wm. Willett
1668Thomas Stevens, grocerHum. Little, Rich. Hart
1669Sir Robt. Yeamans, Bt.Charles Powell, Edward Hume
1670John Knight (jun.), sugar bakerThomas Day, Thomas Eston
1671John Hickes, mercerRichard Stubbs, Thomas Earle
1672Chris. Griffithe, merchantEdward Young, John Cooke
1673Richard Streamer, merchantJohn Cecil, John Dymer (died), Wm. Hasell
1674Ralph Olliffe, innkeeperSamuel Wharton, Edward Feilding
1675Sir Robert Cann, Bart.Charles Williams, George Lane
1676William Crabb, merchantHenry Gleson, Henry Merret
1677(Sir) Richard Crumpe, chandlerWilliam Donning, John Moore
1678(Sir) John Lloyd, brewerWm. Jackson, Wm. Clutterbuck
1679Joseph Creswick, merchantWm. Hayman, Wm. Swymmer.
1680(Sir) Richard Hart, merchantAbraham Saunders, Arthur Hart
1681(Sir) Thos. Earle, merchantRichd. Lane, (Sir) John Knight (II.)
1682Thomas Eaton, merchantGeorge Hart, John Combes
1683Ralph Olliffe; (Sir) Wm. Clutterbuck*Nathaniel Driver, Edmond Arundell
1684(Sir) Will. Hayman, merchantGiles Merricke, James Twyford
1685Abraham Saunders, soapmakerWilliam Merricke, Robert Yate
1686Wm. Swymmer, merchantGeorge Morgan, Edward Tocknell
1687Richard Lane†, sugar bakerJohn Sandford, Samuel Wallis†
Thomas Day, merchantThomas Saunders, John Hine
1688William Jackson, merchant Thomas Liston, Joseph Jackson‡
William JacksonThomas Cole, George White
1689Arthur Hart, merchantJohn Bubb, John Blackwell
1690Sir John Knight (II.)Robert Dowding, John Yeamans
1691Richard LaneJohn Bradway, William Opie
1692Edmond Arundell, merchantJames Pope, Henry Combe
1693Robert Yate, merchantMarmaduke Bowdler, John Bacheler
1694(Sir) Thomas DayJohn Hawkins, (Sir) Wm. Daines
1695Samuel Wallis, ironmongerWilliam Lewis, William French
1696John Hine, sugar bakerPeter Saunders, Francis Whitchurch
1697John Bubb, draperNathaniel Day, John Day
1698John Blackwell, vintnerGeorge Stephens, John Swymmer
1699John Bacheler, draperWilliam Whithead, James Hollidge
1700(Sir) Wm. Dailies, merchantRobert Bownde, Isaac Davies
 * See page 419.† See page 446. ‡ See page 450.


(Compiled by Mr. G.H. Pope, Treasurer. “Ald.” are Aldermen; “C.”, Councillors.)

1605John Hopkins, Ald.1653Joseph Jackson, Ald.
1606John Whitson, M.P., Ald.1654Joseph Jackson, Ald.
1607Thomas James, M.P., Ald.1655Joseph Jackson, Ald.
1608Matthew Haviland, C, Ald.1656Robert Yate, C.
1609Robert Aldworth, Mayor 1657William Yeamans, C.
1610Abel Kitchen, C.1658Robert Cann, C.
1611John Whitson, Ald.1659John Bowen, C.
1612Robert Aldworth, C.1660Henry Creswick, Mayor, Ald.
1613Matthew Haviland, Ald.1661Henry Creswick, Ald.
1614John Aldworth, C.1662(Sir) Robert Yeamans, C.
1615Thomas James, Ald.1663Sir John Knight (I.), Mayor
1616Matthew Haviland, Ald.1664Thomas Langton, Ald.
1617John Barker, C.1665John Willoughby, Mayor
1618John Barker, C.1666John Knight (jun.), C.
1619John Gonning, C.1667Walter Tocknell
1620John Langton, C.1668Walter Tocknell
1621Humphrey Hooke, C.1669Robert Vickris, C.
1622John Guy, Ald.1670William Willett, C.
1623John Doughty, Ald.1671Shershaw Cary
1624William Pitt, Ald.1672Richard Streamer, Ald., Mayor
1625Robert Aldworth, Ald.1673Thomas Earle, C.
1626John Barker, C.1674William Lysons, C.
1627John Tomlinson, C.1675Richard Hart, C.
1628Thomas Wright, C.1676Richard Hart, C.
1629Humphrey Browne, C.1677George Lane, C.
1630Humphrey Hooke, C.1678G. Lane, C. (died), Wm. Hayman, C.
1631Humphrey Hooke, C.. Ald.1679William Hayman, Sheriff
1632Humphrey Hooke, Ald.1680William Jackson, C.
1633Humphrey Hooke, Ald.1681Thomas Eston, C, Mayor
1634Humphrey Hooke, Ald.1682William Merricke, C.
1635Richard Holworthy, Mayor 1683(Sir) Wm. Clutterbuck, Mayor, Ald.
1636Richard Long, Mayor1684Richard Lane, C.
1637Richard Long, Ald.1685Edward Tocknell, C.
1638Humphrey Hooke, Ald.1686Edward Tocknell, C.
1639Andrew Charlton, Ald.1687William Donning, C.
1640John Gonning, Ald.1688Arthur Hart, C, Mayor
1641William Jones, Ald.1689Giles Merricke, C.
1642Alexander James, C.1690William Swymmer, C.
1643Francis Creswick, C, Ald.1691John Cooke, Chamberlain
1644Thomas Colston, C, Ald.1692Robert Yate, C.
1645William Cann, C.1693Robert Yate, Mayor
1646Hugh Browne, Ald.1694Samuel Price
1647Joseph Jackson, Ald.1695Samuel Price
1648Richard Vickris, Ald.1696Peter Saunders, C.
1649Hugh Browne, Ald., Mayor 1697Peter Saunders, C.
1650Miles Jackson, Ald.1698Sir William Daines, C.
1651Hugh Browne, Ald.1699Sir Wm. Daines, C, Mayor
1652Hugh Browne, Ald.1700James Hollidge


Abbot's Leigh, Charles II. at, 234.

Admiralty Court, 138, 460.

African trade, monopoly, 121, 368, 475, 484.

Alderskey Lane, 88.

Aldworth, Robert, sugar refiner, 44, 481; his docks, 88; Richard, M.P., 185, 208, 211, 219, 226, 235; Robert, M.P., 250, 268, 281, 285, 289, 297, 299, 378.

Alehouses, 83; unlicensed, 287; qualification of tenants, 359. See Beer.

Ale tasters, 81.

Algerine corsairs, see Pirates.

Almshouses, Foster's, 46; White's, 47; Merchants', 148, 473; St. Nicholas', 237; Stevens', 393; Colston's, 457; Quakers', 485.

America, exploring and colonizing, 19, 27, 88, 67, 72, 147, 317, 405; emigration to, 146, 405; kidnapping for, 256; extensive trade with, 334, 470.

Anchorage dues, 17, 305.

Angel Gabriel, privateer, 99.

Anne of Denmark, Queen, visit of, 48; her Bristol players, 56.

Anne, Princess (Queen), 448.

Anne's, St., in the Wood, 413.

Apprentices, laws as to, 2, 46, 426; riotous, 290, 353.

Archery, 101, 289.

Arctic expedition, 116.

Arlington, Lord, gift to, 349.

Armour, civic, 16, 70.

Arundel, Earl of, gifts to, 70, 115; 79.

Ashburnham, Lord, 185.

Atkyns, Sir Robert, 312-13, 378, 385, 400; charged with rioting, 401-3.

Attorneys, local, 67, 275, 457.

Augustine's, St., see Great House.

Avon, perils of the, 43, 110; nuisances, 492. See Pill.

Avon navigation, plans, 71, 268, 484.

Baber, William, 119, 298.

Baize-making, 40.

Bakers' Company, 22; revolt of, 58; restrictions on, 59, 443.

Balliol College, grant to, 494.

Ballot, voting by, 234, 296.

Banker, early, 395.

Baptists, rise of the, 239. See Dissenters.

Baptist Mills, 239.

Barber Surgeons' Company, 239, 357.

Barge, corporation, 282.

Barker, John, Mayor, death of, 33; John, M.P., 85, 101; his protest against oppression, 130.

Barristers' fees, 124.

Bartholomew's, St., Hospital, 37, 227, 464.

Bath, Corporation of, 71, 341, 484.

Bathavon ferry, 233.

Baylie, Francis, shipbuilder, 247, 340, 349.

Bear-baiting, 5.

Beaufort, Duke of, see Worcester, Marquis of, and Carolina.

Beauty spots, ladies', 196.

Bedloe, William, infamy of, 386, 395.

Bedminster, manor of, 26; village burnt, 197, 244; road to, 269.

Beer, price of, 45, 83, 94. See Alehouses.

Bell-ringers, St. Stephen's, 74.

Bells, Royalist demand for city, 185; tolling, 138.

“Benevolences”, royal, 18, 54, 98, 189.

Berkeley, Sir Maurice, 216.

Berry, Richard, 469.

Bickham, Richard, 481, 487.

Bishop, Capt. Geo., 250, 260, 319, 349.

Bishops, list of, 497; J. Thornborough, 30; R. Searchfield, 75; R. Wright, 84, 110, 124; G. Coke, 124; R. Skinner, 145; T. Howell, 211; G. Ironside, 355, 361; G. Carleton, 360, 369, 378, 385, 389; W. Goulston, 390, 405; J. Lake, 428; Sir J. Trelawny. 428, 429, 440, 444, 450, 452, 454; G. Ironside, 454.

Bishopric, poverty of the, 361, 390, 441.

Bishops' Palace sold, 212; discomfort of, 390.

Blackwell, Jonathan, 264, 352.

Blake, General and Admiral, 178, 241.

Bloody Assize, the, 431-7.

Bone-houses, parish, 469.

Bonny, William, printer, 471, 474, 479, 483.

Books, chains for, 52.

Bookseller, first, 72. boundaries perambulated, 29, 214, 295, 490.

Bowcher, George, 52, 148, 171; executed, 175; Mrs., 54; Mrs., 175; John, 215; family, 298.

Bowling Greens, 42, 272, 396, 490.

Branding of felons, 486.

Brandon Hill, windmill on, 92; Fort, 162, 176.

Brass pillars, 56, 64, 126, 249.

Brayne, Henry, 350.

Bread of the poor, 3, 34, 486, 488; country, 22, 58, 59; price of, 230, 365, 486.

Brewers oppressed by Crown, 122.

Brick buildings, early, 490.

Bridewell, 72, 84, 326, 446.

Bridge, Bristol, 33, 216; Chapel on, 224; (see Great Houses); Needless, 276; Castle, 284, 375.

Bridges, Sir Thomas, 236, 323, 368.

Brislington Heath, 61.

Bristol, in 1601, 1; population, 2, 34; rateable value, 362, 467; the Queen's Chamber, 56, 90; eulogised by prelates, 112, 125; described by visitors, 129, 338, 348, 359; “Milk”, 129, 320, 348; sieges, 177-181, 197-208; under martial law, 429, 487; plans and view of, 248, 361; idiom, 415.

Bristol diamonds, 180, 250.

Bristol Drollery, 367.

Bristol Hope colony, 68.

Bristol, John, Earl of, 87.

Brushmaker, first, 495.

Bubb, John, 443, 455.

Bull-baiting, 485.

Butcher family, see Bowcher.

Butchers, country, 46; in Lent, 53, 86.

Butter, civic transactions in, 65, 76, 85, 94, 102, 149, 214, 300; monopoly, 76, 136, 149, 242, 246; price of, 41, 150, 221.

Cable, Matthew, 57.

Cage for vagrants, 13; for the unruly, 470; at Lawford's Gate, 218.

Cale, Nath., 152, 296, 297, 310, 328, 327-8.

Calf-skin leather monopoly, 14, 55, 150, 242.

Callowhill, Chris., 96; Thomas, 472, 475, 480, 482.

Canada trade monopoly, 121.

Cann, William, 155, 182, 225; (Sir) Robert, M.P., 222, 223, 310, 312. 319, 321, 350, 372, 373, 377, 384; his outbreak in Parliament, 391; 405, 421, 424, 486(2); Sir William, 319, 380.

Canons' Marsh, 49, 309; Little Marsh, 390.

Cardiff iron, 92.

Carleton, Bishop, 360, 369, 378, 385. 389.

Carolina, colony of, 317.

Carpenters' Company, 346.

Carpets for tables, 64.

Carr, John, see Queen Elizabeth's Hospital.

Carts prohibited, 58, 214, 230, 348.

Cary, Shershaw, 330; John, 447, 471; his Essay on Trade, 474; on pauperism, 479, 482, 488.

Casbeard, John, 318.

Castle, Bristol, in ruins, 43, 130; an Alsatia, 43, 90; civic efforts to purchase, 43; purchased, 113; precincts united to city, 90; Military House in, 114, 258, 267; refortified, 159, 161; plundered, 181; victualled, 195; rentals lost by war, 237; keep demolished, 257; chapel in, 267; property sold, 441.

Castle Gates, 284; bridges, 284, 375.

Castle Street laid out, 258, 276.

Cathedral, corporate seats in, 29, 84, 128, 221, 444; state of, 127; during Civil War, 207, 212, 221, 264; corporate pretensions in, 389; new organ, 414; a model organist, 414.

Catherine, Queen, visits of, 319, 380.

Catherine's, St., Hospital, 329.

Cecill, Thomas, bribed, 79; unruly, 82.

Census of city, 34.

Chairs introduced, 227.

Chapels: on the Bridge, 224; first Dissenting, 239; Quakers', 259, 346; Broadmead, 346, 372, 444; Castle Green, 370, 388, 419; Le win's Mead, 370, 406; all destroyed, 406.

Charities, obsolete, 78. See Almshouses.

Charles I., accession, 89; illegal exactions, 89, 94, 101, 107, 121, 122, 130, 134, 140, 142, 145, 148; shipmoney, 95, 132, 148; grants charters, 90, 96; forced loans, 98, 108, 189; rapacity of courtiers, 97, 102, 112, 113; grants the Hot Well, 106; exacts fines, 118, 131; demands troops, 144, 148; forbids admission of troops, 155; attempts to secure the city, 157; city petition to, 166; approves of Yeamans' plot, 171, 175; civic gift to, 181; visits Bristol, 183; “pardons” it, 184; demands more money, 193; his remarks on the siege, 204; loyalty to, 149, 154, 212; his statue and picture, 230, 295.

Charles II., birth of, 111; visits of, 194, 318; escape after Worcester, 233; Restoration, 294; petitions to for places, 298; grants charters, 324, 421; dictatorial policy, see Corporation; extorts the surrender of charters, 415, 420, 424; forced loans, 338, 343; rapacity of his Court, 420; his statue, 340; his picture, 345.

Charlton, Andrew, 117.

Charters, new royal, 22, 90, 96, 324, 421.

Chatterton family, 348.

Chauney, Ichabod, 388, 418.

Cheese, price of, 41.

Chester family, 60, 215, 300, 308.

Chewton Mendip fight, 158.

Christ Church, 237, 275(2), 425.

Christmas feasts forbidden, 254, 256.

Christmas Steps made, 352.

Churches, advowsons purchased, 97; ravaged by soldiers, 211; hour-glasses, 469.

Churchill, (Sir) John, M.P., 368, 375, 379, 413, 427, 428.

Cirencester, mails to, 494.

Civil War, opening of, 154-6, 160, 162; parties in the city, 165; burdens on citizens, 162, 169, 176, 181, 182, 187, 190, 192-5, 205, 209, 211, 218; panics, 220, 283.

Clarendon, Lord, see Hyde, Sir E.

Clark, Major, 236, 247.

Clergy, incomes of, 14, 75; during and after Civil War, 169, 208, 209, 227, 247, 273; civic chaplain, 262; curious petition, 384; passive obedience preached, 399, 440; Jacobitism, 470, 487.

Clifton, wine license for, 105; burnt by Rupert, 197; manors of, 374. See Hot Well.

Clothing trade, decline of, 2, 40, 393, 485.

Clubmen, the, 198.

Clutterbuck, (Sir) William, 420, 446, 454, 483.

Coach, first public, 302; private, 320, 366.

Coal, Kingswood, 29, 84, 94, 154.

Cock-pit, 42.

Cock-throwing, 260, 292.

Coffee houses, 336, 387, 403.

Coinage, debased, 477. See Mint.

Coke, Bishop, 124.

Cole, Alice, 256.

College Green, state of, 127; conduit, 290, 472.

Colston, Thos., 17; Thos., 152, 156, 165, 181, 190, 206, 207, 215; William, 39; William, 66, 183, 185, 207, 297, 298, 310, 316, 320, 321, 332, 342, 377, 379, 409; (Sir) Richard, 298, 320, 409; Robert, 372; William, murdered, 379; Thomas, 409; Edward, reappearance in Bristol, 409; his almshouse, 457; the White Lodge, 464; his benefactions, 473, 482; sugar house, 478.

Colston Fort, 190, 197.

Colt, John Dutton, 454, 463.

Commonwealth proclaimed, 225; corruption under, 276. See Civil War, Clergy.

Companies, trade, laws of, 4, 17, 25, 42, 46, 148, 217, 239.

Conduits, public, 252, 254, 267, 289, 396, 472.

Conscience, Court of, 446.

Constables' staves, 363.

Cooke, John, his Folly, 488.

Cooks' confederacy, 495.

Coopers' Company, 25.

Corn trade regulations, 230, 332.

Coroners, salary of, 81, 230.

Corporation: treatment of strangers, 4 (see Foreigners); treatment of Queen Elizabeth's Hospital, 8, 496; burdens on members, 16(2), and see Civil War; imposes new dues, 17, 28; penalty for taking bribes, 23, 79; poverty of minor officers, 26; fines for exemption from office, 33, 35, 223, 228, 262, 347, 426, 464; fines for refusing office, 136, 229, 269, 277, 289, 307, 431, 450, 458; economy, 35; presents of wine, plate, etc., 28, 35, 36, 41, 43, 52, 65, 79, 84, 91, 97, 115, 123, 124, 125, 135, 139, 182, 184, 194, 204, 208, 226, 281, 349, 385, 420, 448, 450, 491; treatment of Grammar School estates, 37; treatment of Owen's Charity, 46; insignia, 49; pensions to members, 51, 329, 426; absentees, 53, 116, 350; proxies, 56, 465; precedency quarrels, 63, 312, 457; royal and aristocratic dictation, 23, 78, 135, 145, 184, 296, 297, 299, 311, 330, 335, 356, 440, 443; disfranchises freemen, 93, 147, 148, 307; purchases advowsons, 97; corporate robes, 109; civic account-books, 146, 465; attitude at opening of the Civil War, 149, 154, 156; prepares against a siege, 158-9 (see Fortifications); loans to Parliament, 160, 166, 169; attempts reconciliation and neutrality, 161, 163; receives Parliament troops, 164; assessments, see Civil War; gift to the King, 181; Puritan members ejected, 185; gift to Queen, 191; gift to Prince of Wales, 194; Puritans reinstated and elected, 205, 214; Royalists ejected, 207, 265; purchases Chapter lands, 226, 279; voting by ballot, 284, 296; secrecy of debates, 244; defends city privileges, 247; anti-Cromwellian, 232, 249, 251; usurps private rights, 252, 253, 284; civic chaplain, 262; debts, 263; “Sabbath” laws, 267, 387; purchases wine licenses, 272; rules of debate, 277; unpopularity, 277; indebtedness, 279, 394, 441, 457, 461, 465, 496; last effort for Puritanism, 292; gifts to Charles II., 294-5; Royalists reinstated, 295-6; Puritans expelled, 296, 310; wharfage dues leased, 306, 438; charters attacked, 306; entertains the King, 319; obtains new charter, 324; excessive elections, 330, 416; inertia, 362, 367; costly litigation, 376, 381; disputes with Dean and Chapter, 378, 389; linen-weaving scheme, 394; political exasperation, 401, 412, 413, 416; Mr.

Colston's loan, 409; members excommunicated, 415; new attack on the charters, 415, 419; charters surrendered, 420; city in the King's hands, 424; new Council, 424; Church patronage, 425; officers' robes, 442; estates sold, 441, 457, 496; Council purged by James II., 446-8; the charters restored, 449; the Revolution, 450-2; Jacobite factiousness, 455, 457, 460, 462; admits a printing-press, 471; abolishes M.P.s' wages, 472; love of display, 489; the Marsh let for building, 490; state of the civic body in 1700, 496.

Corporation of the Poor, see Poor.

Corsley, R., banker, 395; Hum., 447.

Council House, 275, 342, 491.

Councillors excommunicated, 415.

Courts of law, local, 67, 275, 446.

Cranes, city, 125, 438.

Creswick, family mansion. 115, 183, 331, 409; Francis, 205, 207, 208, 263; (Sir) Henry, 296(2), 316, 319, 321, 342, 343(2), 349; Francis, 445; Joseph, 330.

Criminals, juvenile, fate of, 455, 494.

Cromwell, Oliver, in Bristol, 202, 225; letters of, 278; Protector, 249; death, 283; Richard, visit of, 280; proclaimed, 283.

Cross, see High Cross; St. Peter's, 487; Temple, 487.

Crossman, Prebendary, 389.

Crump, Sir Richard, 427, 445.

Cucking Stool, 79, 295, 311, 336.

Cupoloes, the, 442.

Currency, debased, 477.

Custom House, receipts, 80, 334, 345, 383; abuses of officers, 85, 122, 136, 139, 152; frauds on, 463.

Customs duties, illegal, 20, 36, 53, 82; and see Charles I.

Daines, Sir William, 480, 482.

Day, (Sir) Thomas, 310, 401, 424, 447, 453, 464, 472, 473, 478, 479,468, 495; Nathaniel, 447,478, 491; John, 491.

Dean and Chapter, absentees, 110, 127; abuses, 127, 309; estates sold, 226, 269; arrogant pretensions of, 378; revenues, 414; quarrel with Corporation, 389; treatment of Bishop Goulston, 390.

Dean, Forest of, 120, 128, 223.

Deans, list of, 407.

Dearth, see Distress.

Death, punishment of, 63, 91, 408, 455, 494.

Debt, imprisonment for, 45. “Delinquents” fined, 215.

Deodands, law of, 231.

Desbrowe, General, 261, 265, 280.

Disaffection in city, see Royalists, Anti-Royalists; 398.

Dissent, religious, rise of, 151, 209, 239-41, 274, 301.

Dissenters persecuted, 301, 323-4, 328, 351, 354; transported, 385; sentenced to death, 408; chapels wrecked, 355, 406; tolerated, 364; renewed persecutions, 369, 406, 425; “Indulgence”, 444, 449, 456; ministers die in prison, 370, 425.

Distilleries, 384, 488.

Distress of poor, 34, 41, 64, 85, 94, 102, 135, 214, 221, 285, 366, 467.

Docks, early, 88.

Doddridge, John, M.P., 261, 268.

Dorset, Earl of, High Steward, 8.

Doughty, John, M.P., 82, 94, 101.

Dover, Dr. Thomas, 480.

Drama, the, see Playactors.

Duck-hunting, civic, 159, 214.

Ducking of scolds, 79, 91, 295, 311, 336.

Duddleston, (Sir) John, 447, 460, 482.

Dutch in the Medway, 343.

Dutch prisoners of war, 337.

Earle, (Sir) Thomas, 388, 400, 402, 406, 411, 414, 416, 417, 424, 454, 158; Giles, 280; Joseph, 491.

Easter holidays, 101.

Elbridge, Giles, 100, 181, 207.

Elections, Parliamentary (1601), 15; (1604) 20; (1605) 22; (1614) 58; (1620) 76; (1624} 85; (1625) 89; (1626) 94; (1628) 101; (1640) 147, 149; (1642) 157; (1646) 210; (1658) 244; (1654) 250; (1656) 268; (1659) 285; (1660) 293; (1661) 305; (1677) 384: (1679) 391-3; (1681) 400; (1685) 427-8; (1689) 453; (1690) 456; (1695) 478; (1698) 488.

Elizabeth, Queen, her bears and actors, 5; intended visit, 18.

Ellsworth, (Sir) Richard, 290, 297, 299, 300. 328, 344, 347, 373, 384.

Elton, (Sir) Abraham, 478, 482, 491.

Emigration to America, 146, 405.

Essex, Colonel, Governor, 164, 166, 167, 168.

Essex, Earl of, 168.

Essex Fort, 178.

Eston, Thomas, 413, 419, 446, 454.

Evelyn, John, visit of, 250.

Ewens', St., Church, 278, 275.

Ewens, Thomas, 274.

Excommunicated councillors, 415.

Executions, 63, 91; of Yeamans and Bowcher, 175, 408; after Bloody Assize, 432, 434.

Exeter, shooting matches, 62; Customs at, 383.

Fairfax, Sir Thomas, captures city, 197, 200-3.

Fairs, the great, 61, 110, 187, 193, 341, 381, 462, 479.

Farley, Samuel, 298.

Farmer, Rev. Ralph, 262, 274, 282; Arthur, 266, 294, 310, 321, Farthings, Bristol, 11-13, 50, 128, 188, 235, 251, 358, 394; petitions to coin, 478.

Fee-farms, the Royal, 92, 231-2, 237, 276, 282, 360; for Castle, 113, 232; surrendered, 295; repurchased, 360.

Fee-farms, corporate, 360.

Feilding, Edwd., 422, 424, 454.

Fell, Margaret, 301, 351.

Felons, pardons for, 494.

Feltmakers' Company, 26, 376.

Ferry, Temple Back, 233, 254.

Fiennes, Nath., Governor, 168, 172, 174, 176. 177, 179; his surrender, 180, 205; trial, 186.

Fillwood Chase, 61, 302.

Fire on the Bridge, 216; others, 248, 342, 358, 363, 404, 430, 456.

Fires, provisions against, 216, 343, 358, 363, 404, 469; fire engine, 415.

Fish, a strange, 32.

Fishing sports, civic, 159, 214, 375, 490.

Fitzherbert, John, 298.

Flood, great, 32. “Foreigners”, treatment of, 4, 13, 96, 236, 259, 261, 280, 304, 341, 346, 353, 368, 397, 476, 495; persecution abandoned, 496.

Fortifications of city, 158, 161, 168, 176, 190, 197; destroyed, 217; repaired, 220, 225, 288.

Foster's Almshouse, 46.

Founder, first local, 261.

Fox, George, visits of, 259, 351.

Free burgesses, admission of, 34, 40, 55, 236, 280, 289, 315, 347, 365, 375, 384, 405, 418, 426, 437, 448, 449, 461, 471, 495; deprived of votes, 93, 147, 148; freedom refused, 375, 426; treatment of non-freemen, see Foreigners.

Froom, filthiness of the, 213, 492; obstructed, 362; fishing in, 159, 214, 375, 490.

Froom Gate, 165, 172, 179, 388, 460.

Funeral customs, 33, 71, 126, 138, 260, 349, 371.

Gale, Thomas, Postmaster, 443.

Gallows, the, 91.

Gambling licensed, 327.

Gerard, Sir Charles, 97.

Gibbs, Henry, 449.

Gin drinking, rise of, 232, 488.

Glanville, (Sir) John, M.P., 114, 145, 147, 157, 189, 210, 214.

Glass making, 421, 476.

Glass windows, 3, 476.

Glemham, Dean, 309, 337.

Gloucester, siege of, 184.

Gloucestershire during Civil War, 170, 176, 184, 190, 198, 206, 213.

Gloucestershire Society, 282, 319.

Glovers' Company, 26.

Goldney, Thomas, 267, 431.

Gonning, Ald. John, 156, 159, 181; John, jun., 169, 181, 207, 208, 262, 310.

Gorges, Sir F., 27, 72, 157.

Gough, Giles, 276, 277; Henry, 426.

Goulston, Bishop, 390, 405.

Governors of Bristol, see Essex, Fiennes, Hopton, Prince Rupert, Skippon, Scrope, Shrewsbury.

Grammar School, founded, 37; estate alienated, 38; endowments, 47, 48; master's salary, 80, 279; masters, 185, 279; regulations, 284; students at Oxford, 494.

Grandison, Lord, killed, 178; Viscount, 442.

Grand Juries, factious, 397, 401, 403, 408, 416. “Great Houses”: St. Peter's, 44, 478. 481; St. Augustine's, 48, 74, 157, 191, 194, 252, 446; at the Bridge, 107, 174, 282, 319, 478, 495; at the Castle, 258, 267; Small Street, 115. 188, 331, 380, 409, 442; Broad Street, 281; St. James', 350.

Grigge, Wm, 272.

Guard House Passage, 473.

Gunpowder, city store of, 71, 92, 367; monopoly, 92, 119.

Guy, John, M.P., 27, 39, 76, 80, 85.

Guy Fawkes' Day, 34, 445.

Haggett, Col. John, 225, 246, 250, 287(2), 311.

Hamburg trade monopoly, 352.

Hanham Mills, 469.

Harsnett, Archbishop, visit of, 112.

Hart, (Sir) Richard, M.P., 310, 330, 393, 400, 401, 417, 428, 440, 446, 453, 456, 462, 473, 483, 488; Arthur, 455, 458, 488.

Harvests, bad, see Distress.

Hatters, laws respecting, 26, 376.

Haven Master appointed, 354.

Haviland, Ald., his will, 71.

Hawks, Ald. Whitson's, 5.

Hawksworth, Richard, 453 Hawley, Sir F. (Lord), 192.

Hayman, Sir William, 427; indicted for kidnapping, 435; 454.

Haystacks in city, 260, 336.

Hazard, Rev. Mat., 148, 151, 170; Dorothy, 151, 179, 186.

Hearth Tax imposed, 336.

Hellier, John, 370-2, 406.

Henley Robert, 391, 418.

Henrietta, Queen, visit, 191.

Heroism, Bristol, 81, 99, 268.

Hertford, Marquis of, 157, 178, 183.

High Cross heightened, 125; statues, 230, 295, 470; redecorated, 489.

Hine, John, obstructive, 447, 480.

Hodges, Anthony, 92; Luke, M.P., 185, 208, 211; John, 442.

Holiday sports forbidden, 254; school holidays, 284.

Hollidge, James, 490.

Hollister, Denis, 151, 239, 241, 245, 251, 326, 346, 475.

Holloway, James, 394, 418; gibbeted, 423.

Holworthy, Ald. R., 118.

Hooke, Ald. Humphrey, 54, 105, 109, 117, 147, 149, 157, 181, 185, 202, 207, 215, 374; (Sir) Hum., M.P., 302, 305, 314, 321, 384.

Hopkins, John, 15.

Hopton, Sir Ralph (Lord), 183, 184, 193.

Horse Fair, state of, 492.

Horse-racing, 74.

Hot-water houses, 282.

Hot Well, early visitors, 105, 130, 381; road to, 306; pump-room built, 471.

Hour-glasses in churches, 469.

House construction, 3, 142.

House of Correction, see Bridewell.

Houses, see Great Houses.

Howell, Bishop, ill-treatment of, 211.

Hucksters, 135, 278.

Huguenots, arrival of, 411, 465; Mayor's Chapel granted to, 465.

Hurle, Simon, 447, 449.

Hutchinson, Samuel, 442.

Hvde, (Sir) Laurence, 28; Sir Nicholas, M.P., 57, 89, 114; Sir Edw. (Lord Clarendon), 185, 286, 296, 315.

Idiom, west country, 415, 459.

Incontinence, punishment of, 253, 312.

Independents, see Dissenters; petition of, 218.

Innholders' Company, 25, 124, 347; hall, 72.

Inns and taverns: Guilders, 32, 54, 129; Rose, 152, 172; White Lion, 270, 382, 456; George, 276; Star, 338; George, 347; Sun, 348; Three Tuns, 368, 369, 372, 375, 427, 445; Lamb, 388; Three Cranes, 397; Horse Shoe, 348, 418; White Hart, 418; Bell, 363; Mermaid, 418; Virgin, 444; Dolphin, 498; hours of closing, 268, 495.

Interest, rate of, 88, 162, 219.

Ireland, trade with, 1; troops for, 15, 102, 159; Royalist mercenaries from, 191; food sent to, 102; vagrants from, 18, 102; trade oppressed, 393, 467, 470, 475; distressed Protestants, 155, 176, 215; mails to and from, 488.

Iron, smelting works, 8; Cardiff, 92; price of, 129, 331.

Ironside, Bishop, and Dissenters, 355, 361; 454.

Jackson, Miles, M.P., 117, 120, 155, 181, 250, 268, 310; Joseph, M.P., 159, 285, 294, 297, 310, 489; William, 449, 450.

Jacobites, local, 455, 457, 460, 461; tumults, 462, 470; assassination plot, 482.

Jacob's Wells, 130, 290, 472.

James I., accession, 18; illegal exactions, 20, 29, 86, 58, 68, 78, 82, 85; grants a charter, 22; demands a gift, 54; his debts to the city, 63; rapacity of courtiers, 64, 82.

James II., accession, 427; lauded by clergy, 399, 428; by Jeffreys, 433; his visits, 442, 445; arbitrary acts, 439, 444, 449; his “Indulgence”, 444; purges the Corporation, 446-7; birth of the Pretender, 448; collapse of the reign, 449; picture of, 427.

James, Thomas, M.P., 20, 27, 29, 53, 63; Thomas, explorer, 116; Alexander, 118, 207, 215, 330.

James's, St., Priory estate, 97, 135, 350; Barton, 350.

James's, St., Church, 287, 385; dispute as to Churchyard, 381; bone house, 469.

Jeffreys, Chief Justice, 431-7.

Jessop, Rev. Constance, 212, 229.

John's, St., conduit, 252.

Joiners' Company, 25.

Jones, Charles, 472, 476; Richard, 474.

Judges, entertainment of, 107, 149, 444; withdrawn, 461; revived, 495; judge insulted, 462.

Kern, Major Sam., 209, 211.

Kersey making, 64.

Keynsham, 430, 432.

Kidnapping practices, 254, 344; Jeffreys on, 484-6.

King's Bench prison, 385.

King's Evil, “ touching ” for, 442.

Kingsweston, 54, 384, 459.

Kingswood Chase, lost to the Crown, 59, 224, 303, 357, 406; area and pretended owners, 61; cheminage, 61; grants by Charles II., 302-4; deer in, 304, 445; rioting, 357; civic petition for Rangership, 406, 421; the colliers, 29, 60, 84, 94, 154, 445, 462.

King Street, Marsh, 237, 317.

Knight, Ald. George, 265.

Knight, (Sir) John, I., M.P., 225, 252, 298, 296, 305, 309, 310, 319, 321, 328-6, 343, 344, 356, 357, 372, 385, 391, 394, 400, 408; death, 422.

Knight, John, sugar refiner, 252(2), 310, 321, 325, 330, 355.

Knight, (Sir) John, II., M.P., 402, 406, 412, 418, 416, 422, 426, 436, 440, 458, 456, 456, 461; his speech burned by hangman, 466; 467, 472, 473, 476, 488, 466.

Knighthood, fines for refusing, 118.

Knights, local, 302, 312, 318, 319-20, 343, 366, 406, 408, 427, 443, 460, 480; their claim to precedency, 312-15.

Knowles, Rev. John, 247, 267.

Lake, Bishop, 428.

Lamprey pies, gift of, 128.

Lancaster, claim of mayor, 39.

Land Tax imposed, 467.

Lane, Richard, 446.

Langton, (Sir) Thomas, 319, 321, 348(2).

Laud, Archbishop, visitation, 127.

Lawford, Ald. John, 372, 435, 447, 453.

Lawford's Gate, statues at, 41; Crown toll at, 61; fortified, 177, 197; stormed, 200; Cage at, 218; growth of district, 300, 307.

Lawrence Hill, reservoir, 469.

Leaden Walls, 388.

Lead-works, 81, 442.

Leigh Court, Charles II. at, 234.

Lent, observance of, 52, 86, 305.

Leonard's, St., church, 274.

Levant trade monopoly, 65, 332, 351.

Lewis, William, 15, 55; Hugh, 243.

Library, City , founded, 52; 273, 461.

Licenses, illegal, 102, 105; corporate wine, 272.

Lieutenancy, Lord, 364, 459.

Lighting Regulations, 31, 263, 301; Act, 491.

Limerick, abuses at, 54.

Linen-weaving scheme, 394.

Liverpool, 132, 383.

Lloyd, (Sir) John, 386, 388, 395, 401.

Loans, forced, 99, 108, 189, 338, 343.

Lock, Ald. John, 265, 295.

London, travelling to, 16, 56, 68, 94, 302, 491; rapacity of merchants, 105, 142, 152; and see Africa, Canada, Hamburg, and Levant Companies; grant to gaols, 385.

Long, Richard, M.P., 149, 157, 181, 207, 215; Sir Walter, M.P., 398.

Lottery swindles, 327.

Macclesfield, Earl of, Ld.-Lieut., 459.

Mansion House, proposed, 281.

Mansions, see Great Houses.

Markets: Corn, 83, 438; Butcher, 46; Vegetable, 72; St. Thomas, 341; Meal, 469; early closing, 46, 495; regulations, 365.

Marlborough, great fire at, 242.

Marriage laws, Puritan, 253.

Marsh, the, a popular resort, 41, 129, 359; bowling green, 42, 272, 396, 490; storm, 312; bull-ring, 486. See Queen Square.

Mary II., picture of, 464; Jacobite insults to, 470.

Mary of Modena, Queen, 445; visit, 446.

Maryleport, St., church, 284.

Matthew, Archbishop, his gift, 52.

Mayors, list of, 497; deaths of, 33, 419; insulting the, 41, 57, 82, 262; ejected, 207-8, 446; royal nominees, 419, 420, 447; robes and chain, 126; hat, 58; salary, 46, 153, 193, 223, 441; pew hangings, 494; the Father of Orphans, 5; arrested, 378; civic desire for a Lord Mayor, 406.

Maypoles, 101, 293.

Measurer, public, 280.

Measy, Michael, 243.

Meat, price of, 94.

Medical charity, 84.

Members of Parliament: see R.

Aldworth, John Barker, Sir R.

Cann, Sir J. Churchill, Sir R.

Crump, Sir T. Day, J. Doddridge, J. Doughty, Sir T. Earle, Sir J.

Glanville, J. Guy, Sir R. Hart, L. Hodges, D. Hollister. Sir H.

Hooke, J. Hopkins, Sir N. Hyde, M. Jackson, J. Jackson, T. James, Sir John Knight, I., Sir John Knight, II., R. Long, Sir W.

Long, Lord Ossory, Sir G. Snigge, J. Stephens, J. Taylor, J.

Whitson, Robt. Yate; members expelled, 157, 189, 392; wages of members, 22, 41, 94, 154, 189, 219, 227, 268, 445, 458, 472.

Men-of-war built, see Ships.

Mercers' Company, 218.

Merchants, local, oppressed by Crown, 180; see Monopolies; cherish monopolies, 151, 243, 246, 470; foster kidnapping, 254, 434. See Slave Trade, white and negro.

Merchant Venturers' Society: anchorage dues granted to, 16; reorganized, 24; attempted monopoly by, 44, 77, 148, 306, 308; Levant trade, 65, 332, 351; granted new charters, 143, 187, 308, 348; oppressed, see James I., Charles I.; losses, 187, 222; wharfage dues granted to, 306, 438; purchase manor of Clifton, 374; treatment of Quakers, 487; see Privateers; list of Masters, 500; Almshouse, 143, 473.

Mermaid's hand and rib, 109.

Merrick, (Sir) Wm., 424, 443, 464.

Metheglin maker, 384.

Michael's, St., Hill, 460, 467.

Millerd, James, his plans of city, 361, 489.

Ministers' stipends, see Clergy.

Mint established, 188, 477; appeal for silver, 478; quantity coined, 478.

Monmouth, Duke of, 319; rebellion, 428; Bristol victims, 434.

Monopolies, royal, 1, 58, 71, 72, 119, 121, 144.

Morgan family, of Pill, 111, 128, 141, 152, 286.

Naturalisation Bill, Protestants', 466.

Nayler, James, fanatic, 259, 269.

Netheway, Richard, knave, 210.

Newfoundland colonies, 38, 67, 73; trade to, 147, 345.

Newgate prison, 33, 45, 370, 381, 407; drinking in, 45; salary of Keeper, 264; rebuilt, 440.

News letters, cost of, 410.

Newton, Lady, funeral of, 260; Sir John, 308, 357.

Nicholas', St., church, 359; almshouse, 237; school, 359.

Nonconformists, see Dissent, Dissenters.

Norris, Sarah, petition of, 286.

North-west Passage, 116.

North, Roger, 312, 391, 392, 398, 421, 428, 434, 437; Chief Justice, 387, 390, 424; Sir Dudley, 421, 428.

Norton mansion, see Great Houses.

Noy, (Sir) William, 113, 114, 128, 124.

Okey, Col. John, 199, 288, 291.

Old Jewry, 221.

Old Market, state of, 267, 467.

Olliffe, Ald. Ralph, 310, 369-71, 407, 419.

Orange, Prince of, see William III.

Organs, church, 129; cathedral, 316.

Ormond, Duke of, High Steward, 309, 331, 374; his sherry, 364; 444, 491.

Orphans, treatment of, 4.

Ossory, Earl of, M.P., 305, 381; Earl of, 437.

Owen's charity abused, 46.

Pack Horses, corn carried by, 484.

Palatine, Prince, subscription for 78.

Panics, 233, 452, 483.

Paper making, 342.

Pardons granted to felons, 455.

Parliaments, see Elections, Members.

Parliament, Long, engages Bristol ships, 155; loans to, 156, 159, 160; ejects Bristol members, 157; occupies city, 162, 163, 165.

Paul's, St., cathedral, 125.

Paul, Rev. John, 274, 287.

Paving regulations, 11, 336; Act, 491. Peine forte et dure, 63.

Peloquin family, 465, 487.

Pembroke, Earls of, High Stewards, 52, 65, 97, 135.

Penarth, odd claim of vicar, 99.

Penn, Giles, 66, 137, 298; Sir William, 292, 293(2), 358; William, 400; visits of, 405, 475; marriage of, 475, and of his son, 476; his estate in Bristol, 476.

Pennington, Sir John, 185.

Pennsylvania, Bristol colony in, 405.

Pensford, Monmouth at, 430; executions, 432.

Pepys, Sam., visit of, 348, 385.

Pester, John, 309.

Peter's, St., Cross, 487.

Petitioners and Abhorrers, 397, 399.

Philip's, St., out parish, 300; bull-ring, 486; poverty of parish, 486.

Physicians, local, 125.

Pictures in the Council House: Lord Burghley, 8; Earl of Dorset, 8; benefactors, 86; Earl of Pembroke, 97; Charles I., 123; Lord Weston, 123; Charles II., 345; James II., 427; William III. and Mary, 464.

Piepowder Court, 120.

Pigs, wandering, 80, 486.

Pill, abuses at, 111, 123, 141, 152, 236.

Pilots, mutiny of, 191.

Pin making, 32, 85.

Pine, Henry, Postmaster, 493.

Pirates, 45, 78, 91, 105, 186, 368, 373; expeditions against, 68, 137; a capture by Bristol youths, 81.

Plague, visitations of, 18, 82, 40, 89, 137, 153, 195, 204, 228, 333, 341.

Plans of city, 248, 361.

Plate, corporate, 54, 261, 295, 365.

Playactors, 5, 37, 114, 336, 349, 462; Bristol company, 56.

Player family, 8, 84, 303, 407.

Plots, see Royalists, Anti-Royalists, Popish, Rye House, Jacobites.

Poll Tax levied, 388.

Poor, Corporation of the, 479; paralysed, 480, 481; purchase the Mint, 481; punishments ordered by, 481; subscriptions in aid of, 482; results, 482.

Poor Rates, 277, 282, 366; in 1696, 480; 486.

Poor, treatment of, 32, 64, 84, 100, 249, 394; pauper badges, 486.

Pope, John, 310, 322; Michael, 447.

Pope's Nuncio, visit of, 445.

Popham, Alexander, 158, 162, 236, 288.

Popish Plot, 386, 391, 395, 397.

Popley, D., engrosser, 115.

Population of city, 2, 34.

Portcullis at Gates, 58, 214.

Porter, Endymion, 139.

Portishead, manor of, 35, 86; rectory, 79; fort, 199, 442.

Post House and Office, 135, 316, 493.

Postboys, speed of, 340.

Postman, early, 56.

Postmasters salary, 443.

Posts to Exeter and Chester, 487.

Pottery, early, 413.

Powell, James, 289, 296, 311.

Powlett, Wm., Recorder, 450, 455, 456, 491.

Pownell, Nicholas, 378.

Poyntz, Sir Robert, 216, 219.

Presbyterians, intolerance of, 221, 229, 272. See Dissenters.

Prideaux, Edm., Recorder, 210, 436.

Pring, Martin, explorer, 19, 27, 94.

Printing Press in Bristol, 188; established, 471, 474, 479.

Prior's Hill Fort, 162, 177, 178, 197, 201.

Prisage of wines, 36, 87, 97, 135, 376, 491. See Purveyance.

Prisoners of war, 223, 337.

Privateers, Bristol, 45, 94, 98, 109, 137, 155, 187, 247; hostile, 222, 268.

Prizes captured at sea, 81, 94, 99, 109, 268.

Property, tax on, 362.

Protestants, foreign, 261, 411, 465; Irish, 155, 176, 215.

Prynn, William, 186.

Pugsley, Mrs., 202. “Purgatory”, 481.

Puritanism, rise of, 6; preachers, 145, 148, 151; emigration, 147; severe laws of, 221, 254; fall of, 293.

Purveyance, grievance of, 20, 29, 36, 48, 50, 57, 68, 82, 107, 134.

Quakers, rise of the, 239; eccentricities, 240, 256; suspected to be Papists, 259; imprisoned, 300; persecuted, 323-5, 328, 355, 368, 406-8, 411, 425; transported, 335; sentenced to death, 408; fleeced, 431; holding tithes, 453; chapels, 259(2), 346; workhouse, 485; admitted to freedom, 487.

Quay Pipe, 289, 396.

Quays, extension of, 305, 438.

Queen's Orchard, 375.

Queen Elizabeth's Hospital, founded, 8-10; benefaction, 17; boys required to work, 42; boys farmed to the master, 492; number increased, 242, 289, 474, 493; salary of master, 262, 492; Colston's gift, 474; defrauded by the Corporation, 496.

Queen Square designed, 358, 490.

Raglan Castle taken, 214, 217.

Rainsborough, Colonel, 137, 201.

Rainstorp, Walter and John, 279.

Ramsay, Lady Mary, 17.

Rawdon, M., tourist, 338.

Reade, Rev. John, 490.

Recorders: Thos. Cromwell, 7; T.

Hannam, 11; (Sir) G. Snigge, 15; (Sir) L. Hyde, 23; (Sir) N. Hyde, 57; (Sir) J. Glanville, 114; E.

Prideaux, 210; B. Whitelock, 235; J. Doddridge, 261; J.

Stephens, 286; Sir Robert Atkyns, K.B., 312; Sir J. Churchill, 413; R. North, 428; W. Powlett, 450 (and see under respective names); entertainment of, 107, 214, 401, 413.

Redcliff Gate fortified, 177, 178; 388.

Red Maids School, 104, 181, 262.

Redwood, Robert, 52, 126.

Restoration, the, 294.

Revolution, the, 450, 451.

Riots, 256; apprentice, 290, 353; anti-Popery, 439, 451-2.

Roads, state of, 10, 86, 180, 348, 467; citizens required to work on, 11.

Roe, Henry, 262, 298; John, Swordbearer, 391, 396, 399, 404, 417, 429, 433, 462.

Rogers family, 107, 118; Woodes, 491.

Roman Catholics, 359, 438, 440, 445, 452; riots, 489, 451-2.

Romsey, John, Town Clerk, 373, 423, 431, 435, 437, 439, 440, 446, 450.

Romsey, Colonel John, 418.

Royal Fort, 182, 190, 194, 195, 197, 203, 220; demolished, 257-8; 267.

Royalist plots, 170, 176, 260, 266, 278, 286, 287, 290; risings, 260, 288, 290; quarrels, 188, 185; fines on Rovalists, 215; Anti-Royalist plots, 195, 316, 318, 322, 342, 418.

Rupert, Prince, 170, 171; siege by, 177, 181; Governor, 183; presents to, 182, 193; his defence against Fairfax, 196, 200; surrender, 202, 204; visit, 319.

Rye House Plot, 418, 419.

Ryswick, Peace of, 487.

Sabbatarianism, rise of, 58, 68; absurd laws, 254; 267, 337, 396.

Sadleir, Sir Ralph, 374, 489.

Sailors, see Seamen.

Salisbury, Earl of, High Steward, 35.

Salt, price of, 115.

Saltpetre monopoly, 119.

Sandford, Samuel, 469.

Scarlett, Mrs., sentenced to be burned, 477.

Scavenging regulations, 11, 64, 108, 187, 213, 333, 380, 441, 456; Act, 491.

School, Red Maids, 104, 131, 262; first day, for poor, 256; first parochial, 359. See Grammar School, Queen Eliz. Hospital.

Scotch army at Worcester, 233.

Scrope, Adrian, Governor, 225, 251, 258, 271; Thomas, 418, 447.

Seal, Chamberlain's, 395.

Seamen impressed, 242, 331, 338; killed, 282.

Searchfield, Bishop, 75.

Sedgemoor, fight at, 430; 442.

Sermons, love of, 14, 23, 30, 48, 66, 128, 448.

Servants, complaints as to, 475.

Settlements, law of, 100.

Sham fight, grand, 49.

Shaving on Sundays, 337.

Sheriffs, election of, 46; nominated by James II., 447; a bribed sheriff, 79; list of, 497.

Sherman, Ald. G., 265, 295.

Shipbuilding, 98, 129.

Ships of war, 94, 101, 155, 161, 247, 330, 340, 349.

Ship Money imposed, 95, 132.

Shipping regulations, 42,218, 253; impressed, 100.

Shipping trade, depressed, 1; revival of, 98; during Civil War, 185, 187; in 1667, 345-6.

Shooting match, great, 62.

Shops, glass windows in, 476, 495; a knightly shopkeeper, 473.

Shrewsbury, Earl of, Governor, 451; 455, 458.

Shrovetide sports, 260, 292, 353, 434.

Sieges of city, (1643) 177, 180; conduct of victors, 181; cost of garrison, 182, 190, 192. (1645), 197-203; state of city after, 203, 206.

Skinner, Bishop, 145.

Skippon, General, Governor, 204, 209, 213, 225, 281.

Slave Trade, white, 223, 254, 432, 434, 436, 494; negro, 368; eulogised, 475, 485.

Slavery in Bristol, 344.

Smiths' Company, 26; hall, 40, 249(2).

Smyth, Sir Hugh, 26, 61, 74; Sir Hugh, 322; Sir John, 424.

Smoking, tobacco, 6, 72, 281, 360, 365, 405.

Sneyd Park, 489.

Snigge, (Sir) George, 15, 20, 22, 23, 36.

Soap-making, 67; monopoly, 121.

Social life in 1601, 4; (1669) 353.

Soldiers, unruly, 15, 102, 181, 288, 437; impressed, 91, 144, 148, 462; charges for, 249; maimed, 285; panic, 452.

Somerset Royalists, 158; loan to, 193; 195, 197, 235; Clubmen, 198.

Southwell, Sir Robert, 384, 423, 460.

Spain, trade with, 1, 51, 95, 345; children sent to, 51.

Spectacles quarry, 489.

Speed, Thomas, 175, 223, 247, 319, 431.

Sports of the people, 5; Book of, 68; sports forbidden, 254, 260, 292; bull-baiting, 485. See Shrovetide.

Stamford, Earl of, 165, 167.

Standfast, Rev. Rich., 156, 161, 209, 275, 299.

Stapleton, Sir Wm., 423.

Star Chamber, Court of, 41, 59, 120, 131, 134, 140.

Starch monopoly, 72, 144.

Steep Street, 460.

Stephen's, St., church, 469; ringers, 74; cemeteries, 375; scavenging, 456; poor, 487; bone house, 469.

Stephens, Walter, 224; John, M.P., 286, 293, 312; Walter, 395, 447.

Stevens, Thomas, his almshouses, 398.

Stewards, Lord High, early appointments, 8; Earl of Dorset, 8; Earl of Salisbury, 35; Earl of Pembroke, 52; Lord Weston, 114; Earl of Pembroke, 135; Sir Henry Vane, 232, 283; Dukes of Ormond, 309, 449.

Stocks, punishment by, 45, 254, 267, 347, 481.

Stoke House, Stapleton, 197, 216.

Stokes Croft, 66; combats at, 178, 201.

Strangers, see Foreigners.

Streamer, Richard, 310, 325, 372.

Streets, foulness of the, 11, 48, 64, 108, 187, 212, 333, 336, 456, 467.

Street improvement, 388.

Subsidies, royal, 320.

Sugar, price of, 2, 97; presents of, 44, 97, 124, 184, 281, 319; refineries, 41, 250, 252, 312, 351.

Sunday observance, 68, 347, 364, 396. See Sabbatarianism.

Surgeons and the Church, 357.

Swearing, profane, 254.

Swords, wearing of, 325, 452, 470.

Swords, civic, 389, 489.

Swordbearer, his hat, 57.

Swymmer, Ald. Wm., 436, 480, 482.

Tailors' Company, 17, 42, 148.

Taylor, John, M.P., 157, 158, 181, 189, 205.

Temple Gate fortified, 177, 178, 227.

Temple Hospital, 47; Almshouse, 393; Cross, 487.

Temple Street, old house in, 3.

Tennis courts, 72, 127.

Tewkesbury, burgesses of, 438.

Thatched houses, 3, 336.

Theatre, see Playactors.

Thompson, Rev. John, death in gaol, 370; Rev. Rich. (Dean), 398, 399, 428.

Thornborough, Bishop, 80.

Thorne family, 37, 86.

Throckmorton, Sir B., 304, 357.

Thruston, John, 299, 311.

Tilers' Company, 361.

Till Adams, Rev. - , 275.

Tilly's Court, 473.

Timber houses, 3, 142, 361.

Tin-plate making, 426.

Tobacco trade, 80, 116, 144, 152, 345; price of, 6, 80, 142, 405.

Tobacco, English, 116, 141, 245, 251, 266, 317, 339.

Tobacco pipes, 6; monopoly, 71; taxed, 72; Pipemakers' Company, 239. See Smoking.

Tobacconists (smokers), 83.

Tolzeys, the, 55, 64, 275; time-piece for, 495.

Tower Harritz, 161, 177, 219.

Towgood, Rev. Rich. (Dean), 156, 161, 170, 209, 299.

Town dues, exemptions from, 39, 438; See Anchorage, Wharfage dues.

Trade, decay of local, 1, 80; great revival, 98; development, 305, 334, 438.

Trained bands, 16, 49, 70, 115, 192, 196, 220, 261, 289, 364, 429, 451.

Tramps, punishment of, 481.

Translators, trade of, 304.

Transportation of felons, 432, 434, 455, 494.

Travelling, expenses, 16, 63, 80, 94, 302, 359; slow rate of, 302, 340, 426.

Trelawny, Bishop, 428, 429, 440, 441, 450, 452, 454; Colonel, 437, 452.

Trumpeters, city, 365, 490.

Turkey trade, see Levant Co.

Turkish pirates, 68, 81, 91, 105, 136, 368, 373, 421.

Tyley, Jos., 396; Thos., 418, 429, 433.

Tyndall, Onesiphorus, 415.

Vagrancy, treatment of, 13, 481; prevalence of, 475.

Vane, Sir H., High Steward, 232, 283, 285.

Vickris, Richard, 52, 184, 208, 231; Robert, 272, 310, 311, 321; Richard, condemned to death, 408.

Virginia Company, 27; trade, 334, 345-6, 428.

Visitors, distinguished: Charles I., 183; Charles II., 194, 234, 319; James II., 319, 442, 445; William III., 459; Queens - Anne, 48; Henrietta, 191; Catherine, 319, 330; Mary of Modena, 446. Oliver Cromwell, 225; Richard Cromwell, 280; Duke of Ormond, 331, 374; Marquis of Worcester, Duke of Beaufort, 366, 405, 412, 429, 451; Duchess of Monmouth, 349; Earl of Arundel, 70, 115; Archbishop Laud, 127; Archbishop Harsnett, 111; Earl of Denbigh, 98; Earl of Shrewsbury, 451; Countess of Castlemaine, 367; M.

Rawdon, 338; John Evelyn, 250; Sam. Pepys, 348; William Penn, 405, 475; George Fox, 259, 351; Papal Nuncio, 445; M. Jorevin, 359; Sir Henry Vane, 232; Sir John Guest, 451; Norwich tourists, 129.

Volunteers, Bristol, 98, 129, 383, 396.

Wade, Nathaniel, 398, 418, 429, 432, 433, 447-8, 450, 480.

Wages, rate of, 2, 125, 346.

Waits, the city, 35, 70, 219, 441.

Waller, Sir William, 177, 376.

Wallis, Ezekiel, 182, 207, 215; Oliver, 232; Sam., 480, 482, 483.

Walls, the old city, 237, 276, 359, 367, 474; see Fortifications.

War, with Spain, 94, 98, 109; France, 95, 98, 100, 109, 338; Holland, 241, 334, 337, 343; see Civil War; losses to commerce, 95, 101, 222, 334, 345(2). See Privateers.

Warner appointed, 218.

Warren, Matthew, 134.

Washing places, public, 386.

Washington's breach, 178, 199.

Watching regulations, 77, 248, 263, 344, 366, 384, 395.

Water Company formed, 468.

Water Fort, 162, 176, 201.

Water supply, see Conduits; foulness of, 289, 396.

Waterford, Corporation of, 71.

Weavers' Company, 17, 40.

Weeks, Rev. John, 364, 370.

Westbury burned by Rupert, 197.

West India trade, 334, 350, 428, 484; white slaves for, 223, 254, 432, 434, 436, 494; negroes, 475, 485; mails from, 487.

Weston, Lord (Earl of Portland), High Steward, 114, 116, 123, 131.

Weston, North, purchased, 35, 138.

Wharfage dues imposed, 28; leased, 306, 438.

Whipping, punishment by, 270-1, 365, 486.

White, Dr. Thomas, his almshouse and charities, 47, 219; George, 126; Sir Thomas, 220.

Whitehall workhouse, 480.

Whitelock, Bulstrode, 106, 235, 245.

White Lodges, 464.

Whitson, John, M.P., 5, 19, 20, 23, 58, 63, 76, 89, 94; his boldness in Parliament, 53; attempted murder, 96; death, funeral, and memoir, 102; his charity school, 104, 131, 262; Christopher, 118.

Whitsun Court, 351.

William III., letter to the Mayor, 451; proclaimed, 453; in Bristol, 459; picture of, 464; assassination plot, 482.

Willoughby, John, 310, 312, 335.

Windmill Fort, 162, 176. See Royal Fort.

Windmills, 92, 162, 264.

Wine, presents of, see Corporation; price of, 94, 123, 375, 444; prisage of, 36, 87, 97, 135, 376, 491; see Purveyance; illegal duties levied, 36, 85, 89, 107, 142, 152; licenses, 272.

Winter, Sir John, 187.

Witchcraft, executions for, 91.

Wood fuel, 29, 248.

Worcester, battle of, 233.

Worcester, Marquis of, 364, 373, 383, 387, 392, 396; splendour of his house, 398; entertained, 366, 405, 412; created Duke of Beaufort, 416; 419, 420, 426-9, 430, 437, 489, 450. 451, 459; his son entertained, 424.

Wright, Bishop, 84, 110, 124.

Wye, navigation of the, 264.

Yate, Robert, 223; Robert, M.P., 453, 456, 472, 478, 482, 488(2).

Yeamans, Robert, 149, 156, 165; his plot and execution, 170-5; (Sir) Robert, 247, 318, 320, 321, 354, 356, 372, 391; Richard, 298.

Butler & Tanner, The Selwood Printing Works, Frome, and London.

OCR/transcript by Rosemary Lockie in August & September 2013.

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