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of the propositions from the French king, any the said Address; and thereupon they gave negative words that he would not do it sooner; an account of the steps by them taken on this as intimated in this Article: and the said Earl subject, to the following effect; that, the day apprehends, that, in fact, he did it sooner; for, after the receipt of that letter, the French plewhen the sieur Mesnager came into England, nipotentiaries were told, that the deferring to the said Earl is informed, he brought with bim a make a formal agnition of the queen at first credential letter from the French king; where- having had all the effect intended, it would be in her majesty was stiled and acknowledged proper then to do it more formally, for reasons queen of Great Britain; and, in the very first with which it was needless to acquaint them; offers, and general conferences, at Utrecht, the otherwise it would be necessary to insert it in French ministers named her Britannic majesty the British demands; that they made no in such direct manner, that the ministers of the other difficulty in it but this, that, having reallies took it for a plain and sufficient agnition; ported to their court how that matter had pass and the French ministers understood it in the ed, they ought, in decency, to give account of same manner, who continued to name her ma- what was then desired; and said, they doubted jesty as queen, without reserve, in their dis not, in ten or twelve days, to give entire satiscourse and letters to her majesty's plenipoten- faction therein; but, being pressed to do sometiaries: and although the said specific expla- thing immediately, they agreed, that, if her nation may, in some part of it, seem to refer to majesty's plenipotentiaries would write to them, a future agnition, to prevent the imperial and they would give an answer, whereby the queen other ministers of the allies from insisting like should be directly acknowledged; which was wise on a present acknowledgment of the titles accordingly done; and the said Earl believes, of their masters, which might probably have that a copy thereof might be transmitted to put a stop to the negociation; yet the said earl England; but not the original; and denies, conceives the agnition of the queen was not that, to his knowledge, it was a collusive letter; thereby the less manifest; and is humbly of or that there was any agreement between the opinion, that her majesty was treated with dis- British and French ministers not to make use tinguishing marks of respect, inasmuch as of it at Utrecht; or not to have it taken as an those titles were given her throughout the acknowledgment by France of the queen's whole course of the negociation; which had title to the crown; or that the copy of it not been allowed, on the like occasions, to other was transmitted with design to deceive, or princes, till the conclusion of peace. It is well impose upon the queen, or parliament; nor known, the title of his late majesty king Wil-doth he know, or believe, it was made use of liam was not acknowledged at Ryswick till that for any such purpose; but he takes it to have peace was signed; nor was the emperor's, or been an actual acknowledgment of the queen's the king of Prussia's, owned during the late title by France, and a further evidence, that negociations, till the concluding their respec- such agnition was not deferred till the signing tive treaties of peace: when, therefore, the of the peace, though it was intended to be then said Earl had no instructions to insist upon a made in a more solemn manner: and the said more formal acknowledgment, he hopes he Earl believes, the honourable House of Peers, cannot be charged with any want of duty to for whose judgment he ever had the highest her majesty, or want of zeal for the Protestant veneration and regard, were satisfied in this Succession, in not advising her majesty against point; since, by their Address of the 10th of treating with France upon the terms on which June following, after they had been acquainted, she entered into the negociation at Utrecht: by her majesty's Speech from the throne, with the said Earl believes, the House of Lords, con- the terms on which a general peace might be ceiving the French king had proposed to ac- had, they thought fit to thank her majesty for knowledge her majesty's title to these realms her condescension therein; and did express no sooner than when the peace should be their reliance on her wisdom to finish that great signed, did by their Address of the 15th day of and good work; as the House of Commons February, 1711, with a commendable zeal, re- also did, by their Address to her majesty, about present to her late majesty their just indigna- the same time: and the said Earl is well astion at such dishonourable treatment, and ex- sured he was not wanting in his zeal and repress their resentment at such terms of peace gard for the security of the Protestant Succesoffered to her majesty, and her allies, by the sion; on which head, the British plenipotenplenipotentiaries of France; and it was agree. tiaries, at the very first general conference able to the duty and affection that august as- with the French ministers at Utrecht, pressed sembly always demonstrated towards that ex- their explanation; and they agreed thereunto: cellent princess, to be touched with the least and, when the allies delivered their respective appearance or apprehension of disrespect to demands, the queen's ministers, on their part, her sacred person; and her majesty, being insisted in such manner on what related to the sensible that their Address proceeded from those security of that Succession, that the princess motives, was pleased to return them her hearty Sophia was pleased to honour them with a letthanks for the zeal they expressed for her ho- ter of thanks, and to acknowledge their care of nour: and the said Earl admits, that, in a let-the interest of her family: nor were they less ter from the secretary of state to the then lord careful, at the conclusion of the Treaty, to setprivy seal and himself, mention was made of tle that important point, with the utmost exact


ness, to the satisfaction of the queen, the court | ceding, at a conference proposed, that all the of Hanover, and both Houses of Parliament; allies should mention Spain, and the Westand the Articles for that purpose were not only Indies, likewise, in their several demands: conceived in stronger terms than had been This caused a general surprize; and none but made use of at Ryswick for acknowledging the the ministers of Portugal concurred with them : then settlement of the crown; but, before they Those of the States, in particular, declared the were inserted in the Treaty, were communi- said dominions ought to be demanded by them cated to the minister of the elector, and had whom it did immediately concern; and that the his approbation; and the manner of that tran- method things had been put into could not suffer saction seems sufficiently justified from the it to be otherwise; but, the next morning, to happy effects: the said Earl absolutely denies, give content to the imperialists, they yielded to that he did ever concert or agree with the mi- make a verbal declaration among the allies, that nisters of France, that any proposals mentioned they were resolved to make good all their treain the said Article, or any other proposals what- ties on occasion of this war, as well those that soever, should be the conditions whereon France related to Spain, as those made with Portugal, should treat of peace with Great Britain; nor Prussia, Savoy, and others: The British pledoth he know, that the queen, the parliament, nipotentiaries, to give the like satisfaction, or the nation were in any respect abused, or declared publicly at the conferences the same drawn into destructive measures; or that any day, that as her majesty insisted for a just and step was taken on this occasion, whereby dis- reasonable satisfaction for all her allies, in conhonour could accrue to her majesty, or these formity to all her alliances, those that might kingdoms, or any danger to the Protestant Suc- concern Spain, and the Indies, were understood thereby, as well as others that concerned the In Answer to the Fourth Article; the said interest of the rest of the allies; wherewith the Earl saith, that the bishop of Bristol, and him- Austrian and Portugal ministers seemed satis self, being appointed her majesty's plenipoten-fied; nor did they request any thing further tiaries, did, soon after their arrival at Utrecht, from the said bishop and Earl on that head; pursuant to their instructions, begin, by con- and therefore he humbly apprehends, that in certing with the ministers of the allies, in what the negociation he neither declined to insist, manner it was most proper to open the con- that Spain, and the West-Indies, should not be ferences, and what method was to be observed allotted to the House of Bourbon, as far as his in the progress of the treaty; and, if it had instructions, directing him to act in concert been thought proper to begin with the dispo- with the rest of the allies, required; nor refused sition of the Spanish monarchy, the said Earl to join with the imperial and Portugal miwas ready to have insisted, as the said instruc-nisters, or either of them, to strengthen that tions directed him to do in that case; but, upon demand in such manner as was proper; but in such concert, it was thought most advisable, this, and all other matters, he pursued, with and so agreed, by all the ministers of the allies, constancy, the orders, he from time to time, that each of them should, by a separate instru- received from her majesty, as the nature and ment, make their respective demands; with a circumstances of things would give leave: general clause to support each other's just and And, in case her late majesty found it impracreasonable pretensions; and this was looked ticable to persist in her first designs of gaining upon as the most proper method, and necessary Spain, and the West-Indies, from the House of to avoid that confusion, which would otherwise Bourbon, and thought other expedients for preensue from the contrariety of the demands of venting the union of the two monarchies of the several allies; it being then known, that Spain and France might as well answer the many of them did and would insist to have the ends of her several alliances, and did thereupon same thing for themselves, in opposition to each enter into other measures for obtaining a geother: The imperial ministers, as well as the neral peace, in which her allies concurred; rest, acquiesced in that method; and, at a fol- the said Earl hopes, that his conforming himlowing conference, it was further desired, that self to the measures, not only prescribed by there should be added to such general clause her majesty, whose minister he was, and the words "in conformity to their alliances;" whom it was his duty to obey, but also apwith which the said bishop and Earl, as well as proved by both Houses of Parliament, will not the rest, most readily complied, and those be esteemed an acting in defiance of the treaties words were accordingly added to the general between her majesty and her allies; in conclause in each of the allies demands; which tempt of the advice, or opinion, of parliament, seemed to give a general satisfaction; and or in violation of his instructions: And he canthere was nothing further at that time insisted not entertain such diffidence of your lordships' on. In consequence of this agreement, it was justice and goodness, as to suspect, that his the general expectation, that the demand re- actions, which proceeded from a principle of lating to Spain, and the West-Indies, should obedience to his sovereign, and zeal for the be particularly inserted only in the instrument public service, should be condemned as perto be given in by the imperial ministers; but, fidious or unwarrantable: And the said Earl there having been a day long before fixed for denies, that by any of his practices, any jeadelivering in to the French all the demands of lousies or discords were created between her the allies, the imperialists, the very night pre-majesty and her allies: the mutual confidence

between them was dissolved; the just balance of power in Europe betrayed; or any advantage given to the common enemy to impose what terms of peace he should think fit upon her majesty, or any of the confederates.


counsel or advice given by him, any directions were sent to her majesty's general in Flanders to avoid engaging in any siege, or hazarding a battle; nor was he privy to the sending any such directions: And he denies, that he advised her late majesty to send any person, much less himself, from England to the army in Flanders, to cause a cessation of arms to be made, or proclaimed, between her majesty and the French army: But acknowledges, that, be being her majesty's ambassador, she was pleased to give him orders and instructions, under her sign manual, dated the 21st day of June, 1712; whereby he was commanded to make all possible dispatch to the army in the Low-Coun tries; and, upon his arrival there, to inform her general and commander in chief of the resoTutions taken in the then important conjuncture of affairs; and also to declare to the generals and commauders in chief of the foreign troops in her majesty's pay, and in the joint pay of her majesty and the States-General, with how much surprize her majesty heard there was the least doubt of their obeying such orders as they should receive from her said general; and likewise, commanding the said Earl to continue with the said army till the affair of the suspension of arms, and the surrender of Dunkirk, were determined one way or other; and that thereupon he resorted to the Hague, and there, in conjunction with his colleague, the then lord bishop of Bristol, acquainted the States General with her majesty's intentions for a short cessation of arms between the armies in the Netherlands, upon certain conditions to be performed by France; one of which was, the surrendery of Dunkirk into her majesty's pos session; inviting the States to join with her majesty therein: After this, the said Earl proceeded to the army, and acted conformably to his said instructions; and hopes, that what was the performance of his duty will not be imputed to him as a crime: But the said Earl denies, that any cessation, or separation of the troops, was executed, or performed, by his advice; nor was he otherwise concerned therein, than in signifying the orders he had in command from her majesty to her general: And he believes from the best judgment he can make upon the then situation of affairs, that, if the cessation that was made by her majesty bad been generally complied with by the rest of the army, it would have increased the confidence between her majesty and her allies, and have obliged the French king more speedily to comply with their demands in the negociations of peace; and that the most promising expectations from the operations of the campaign, during those two months for which the cessation was to continue, could not equal the advantage accruing to the confederates by the surrender of the important fortress of Dunkirk, which was put into her majesty's bands, as one of the conditions of it.

In Answer to the Fifth Article; the said Earl doth acknowledge, that her late majesty, in her Speech from the throne on the 7th day of Deceinber, 1711, having acquainted her parliament that both time and place were appointed for opening a Treaty of Peace, did, at the same time, remind them, that the best way to make the Treaty effectual would be to make early provision for the campaign; and believes, supplies were granted, and magazines provided, for that end: But the said Earl saith, that, at the time in the said Article for that purpose mentioned, he was not informed of any reasonable prospect the confederates then had of gaining new conquests over the army of France; nor doth he believe, that the confederate army, at that time, was the strongest that had been in the service during the whole course of the war; but, upon the informations he received at the Hague, about the 19-30th of April, 1712, he understood, that the French were better posted than the confederates, and their army stronger; and that the confederate forces could not march | to surprise the French in their lines till they had green forage, which would not be up in three weeks at soonest; and that the French had all their troops, and the confederates wanted great part of theirs; especially the imperialists, who, it was thought, could not, and in fact did not, join the army till about a month after: And the said Earl conceiving the Treaty of Peace in so great forwardness, that, by a constant applcation of the plenipotentiaries, it might probably be brought to a conclusion in a month's time, he did, upon these considerations, apprebend it would not have been any disservice to the common cause, if a cessation of arms for a month had been then agreed on; during which time, the negociation might have been ended one way or other: And be believes, that, according to his duty he might, about that time, in a letter to her majesty's secretary of state, send an account of the posture and condition of the two armies: But denies, that he took upon him to counsel or advise on that subject; but only proposed the matter for further deliberation in England, if, upon those, or other accounts, such a short cessation should be thought necessary; much less did he then, or at any other time, suggest, or advise, any cessation of arms to be made with France without, or against, the consent of the allies, or with design to disappoint any just expectation they might have, or to give success to any secret or wicked negociations whatsoever: And he is not yet sensible, that a cessation for a month, at that time, could have been any hindrance or prejudice to the cause of the allies, or have given the least advantage to the enemy: However, in fact, no cessation was made upon his said letter: The said Earl saith, he doth not know, or believe, that, in pusuance of any

In Answer to the 6th Article; the said Earl, not admitting that he did advise, or procure, a cessation of arms, or obtain for France any se

paration of the troops of Great Britain from the such passage or admittance: The said earl confederate army, or was otherwise concerned doth acknowledge, that, after this refusal of the therein than as in his Answer to the preceding Dutch commanders to receive any of the Article is set forth, denies, with a just abhor- queen's troops into, or permit them to pass rence, that he ever had any treacherous pur- through, the towns in their possession, they poses to advance or promote the interests of retired into Ghent and Bruges; the former France; or to render any future correspon- having been their usual quarters, and the citadence, or harmony, between her late majesty del thereof having been garrisoned by them and the States General, impracticable; or to from the beginning of the campaign: But the weaken or distress the said States, or bring said Earl does not know, or believe, there was them under any necessity of complying with, any treacherous or destructive design in the or submitting to, the measures of France; nor marching of those troops into, or taking pos did or doth he know, or believe, that the taking session of, those towns; nor doth he know, or possession of Ghent and Bruges by the British believe, it was done in concert with any of the troops was likely to produce any such conse- ministers of France, who, he is confident, were quence; on the contrary, he conceives, that not privy to, or knew any thing of it, till after it was very much for the advantage of the it was executed: Nor doth the said Earl disallies, especially the States-General, that the cern how it contributed to the prejudice of the English troops took possession of those towns, confederates, or advantage of the French army; which would otherwise, in all probability, have but, on the contrary, the said Earl is very well fallen into the hands of the French: the said assured, that it proved greatly to the advantage Earl doth acknowledge, that, when the British and security of the former, whose convoys troops were left by the other forces, who se. were thereby protected, and the communication parated from them, and were under a neces- between Holland and the confederate army sity of retiring to some place of security, and kept open; and the advantages thereby to the it was reported, that the Dutch had given orders common cause were so notorious and visible, to all the commanders of the towns in their that the allies frequently expressed their satispossession to refuse them admittance, or pas- faction, that those important places had been sage, he did not think the resolution improper, so well secured; by which means, the allies which was taken by her majesty's general, to had all the advantages of those towns, without send a party of the queen's troops to march being at the expence of garrisons, the furnishthrough some part of those towns, to make ex- ing of which would have obliged them to make periment whether they would refuse them such detachments from their army, as would passage; for, if passage should not be refused have rendered it difficult for them to have kept them, the Dutch would be vindicated from the the field: And, on the other hand, the French report which had been given out, so highly ministers frequently complained of the great reflecting on their honour, and so repugnant to disadvantages occasioned thereby to the arms the repeated professions and assurances of the of their master, whom they thought not well good-will and friendship they had so constantly treated by her majesty on that account: And declared for Great Britain; and, if such pas- the said Earl apprehends, that the British troops sage should be refused, it would demonstrate had equal right with those of the States to enter the necessity the English troops were under of into Ghent and Bruges, or any other place of resorting to Ghent and Bruges: However, the the Low Countries, which, by agreement, were said Earl doth not admit, that he did advise there- under the joint government of the queen and in; much less had he any such hopes, or treache- the States General; and this happened, at that rous designs, as in the said Article are men- time, to be of the greater importance, since the tioned; nor did he seek any pretence to put in queen's troops were thereby enabled to mainexecution any design, or resolution, concerted tain a communication with Dunkirk and Engwith the ministers of France; nor was any land, and was afterwards found likewise very such design, or resolution, to his knowledge, or useful towards obtaining the removal of the belief concerted: The said Earl doth believe, unjustifiable impositions laid by the Dutch that a party of the queen's troops, being sent upon the British merchandize in the new conwith intentions to obtain admittance into some of quests in the Netherlands; which they themthe towns in Flanders, where some of the Eng-selves had many months owned to be a griev lish magazines and hospitals were, or at least, ance; but had not before thought fit to reto obtain passage through them to some other dress. places of security, were refused by the Dutch commanders, although those towns had been conquered chiefly by British blood and treasure: But the States General disavowed their giving any orders for that purpose; and thereby rescued themselves from the reproach of an usage, that might have been thought inhuman to confederate troops, who had spent their blood for their service, and had done no act of hostility, nor given any just reason to the States to apprehend any ill consequences from VOL. XV.

The said Earl humbly hopes he has fully answered the several Articles exhibited against him; and he doubts not but your lordships will, in your great wisdom, maturely weigh the nature of the Charge, which is chiefly founded on his transactions abroad with the ministers of foreign princes and states; whose testimony, though never so material towards clearing his innocence, it will be impossible for him to produce: He assures himself, your lordships will have a due regard to the wide 3 X

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Proceedings against the Earl of Strafford. [1044 1945]

thoughts, that, on the contrary, he was truly zealous to make it general; and he had the happiness to succeed therein in as great a degree as was ever known, when so many confe derates were concerned: nor was the said Earl less zealous in supporting, to the utmost of his abilities, the honour and reputation of his late royal mistress; which was so far from being prostituted, or suffering any diminution, by his negociations, that her majesty did, through the whole course of those negociations, and to the very hour of her death, maintain as great and glorious a character as any of her royal predecessors, or as she herself had done in any for mer part of her reign.

said Articles contained, and not herein before And as to all other matters and things in the particularly answered, the said Earl saith, he is not guilty of them, or any of them, in the manner and form as the same are charged upon him in and by the said Articles; humbly submits himself to your lordships' STRAFFORD.


swer to the Commons, by whom, on the 28th,
On the 17th, the Lords sent down this An-
it was read, and the Committee of Secrecy or
dered to prepare a Replication to it.

crecy reported that they had prepared the fol
On the 12th of June, the Committee of Se
lowing Replication:

extent, the great length and intricacy, of the negociations, wherein he was engaged by his late sovereign's express commands; to which he did the more cheerfully submit, being joined in the most considerable parts thereof with a reverend prelate, whose long residence abroad, and experience in the methods of treating with foreign princes and states, had abundantly qualified him for the discharge of so important a trust: However, the said Earl, on his part, may, in any respect, have been unequal to the province assigned him; yet sure he is, that he always endeavoured to acquit himself therein with the utmost integrity; and cannot but express a just detestation of the many evil intentions wherewith he is loaded by the said Articles: And as he humbly apprehends, the several facts, mentioned in the Articles, if they could be proved, will not appear criminal, ab. stracted from the ill motives and designs from which they are supposed to proceed; so he is fully persuaded, your lordships will distinguish between the actions themselves, and the inten-judgment. tions wherewith they are charged to be done; and he assures himself, that your lordships will judge of the sincerity of his intentions by the tenor of all his letters and papers, and not by any particular passages selected from them; and is secure in your lordships' justice, that no strained construction of any such passages will be made by your lordships to his prejudice: he cannot but think himself extremely unfortunate in falling under the displeasure of the honourable House of Commons; nor could he receive the swer of Thomas earl of Strafford to the Articles "The Commons have considered the Anfirst intimation of it without the greatest surprise not being conscious to himself that he knights, citizens, and burgesses, in parliament of Impeachment exhibited against him by the had transgressed any known law, he was not assembled; and do aver their Charge against without hopes, having spent the best and the said Thomas earl of Strafford, for High greatest part of his life abroad in the army, and Crimes and Misdemeanors, to be true; and that in several embassies, always endeavouring to the said Earl is guilty of all and singular the promote the welfare of his country, that he Articles and Charges therein respectively conmight, at his return, have met with its appro-tained, in such manner as he stands impeached: bation, as a recompence for his long and faith- and that the Commons will be ready to prove ful services: however, he comforts himself with their charge against him, at such convenient this reflection, that every step of his proceed-time as shall be appointed for that purpose." ings in the late negociation was laid before her majesty and received her royal approbation : nor will it, he conceives, be judged improper, if was delivered to the Lords on the 14th of the To which the House agreed, and the same he observes to your lordships, that the States same month. General, in their letter to her majesty, a little before the signing the peace, acknowledged they could not enough commend her plenipotentiaries for the assistance they had given them in their Treaty with France; and that all the allies gave frequent marks of their esteem for the said Earl, and his colleague, on account of the many services they had received from them. The said Earl is confident it will appear to your lordships, that although he did, with the utmost application, pursue the good of his own country preferable to that of any other nation whatsoever; yet he was never wanting to promote the advantage of the allies, particularly of the States General, where it did not interfere with the interest of Great Britain. A separate Treaty of Peace was so far from his

mention of farther proceedings in the matter. After which, I find not in the Journal any But it is observable, that on Aug. 18th, 1715, lord Strafford protested against the rejection of the motion, to enquire whether lord Bolingbroke had been summoned, and in what manner, and against the passing of the Bills for the Attainder of Bolingbroke and Ormond. [See pp. 1003, 1013, of this Volume.] In the debates in the House of Lords, upon the Bill against Atterbury, [see the Proceedings against him, A. D. 1723], Strafford spoke on behalf of the bishop, and in opposition to the Bill.

against lord Strafford in Coxe's Memoirs of sir See something relative to the Proceedings Robert Walpole,

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