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or intend death or destruction, or any bodily harm tending to death or destruction, maim, or wounding, imprisonment or restraint of the rson of the same, our sovereign lord the king, §. heirs and successors—” Now, gentlemen, comes the part which forms the subject of one of the counts of the indictment: “–or to dese him or them from the style, honour, or É. name of the imperial Crown of this realm, or of any other of his majesty's dominions or countries, or to levy war against his majesty, his heirs or successors, within this realm, in order, by force or constraint, to compel him or them to change his or their measures or counsels,” which is another, “ or in order to put any force or constraint upon, or to intimidate or overawe both houses, or either house of parliament, or to remove or stir any for reigner or stranger, with force, to invade this realm, or any other of his majesty's dominions or countries, under the obeisance of his majesty, his heirs and successors; and such compassings, imaginations, inventions, devices or intentions, or any of them shall express, utter, or declare, by publishing any printing or writing, or by any overt act or deed, being legally convicted thereof, upon the oaths of two lawful and credible witnesses upon trial, or otherwise convicted or attainted by due course of law; then every such person and persons, so as aforesaid offending, shall be deemed declared and adjudged to be a traitor, and traitors, and shall suffer pains of death, and also lose and forfeit, as in cases of high treason.” If you require any further explanation I will give it to you; but it seemed, I thought, to be taken for granted by the counsel on one side and the other, that the project, if proved, was a treasonable conspiracy to depose the king, or to levy war against the king. If they had succeeded so far as to establish a provisional government, the royal functions would have ceased. Any attempt by numbers, and by force, to compel his majesty to alter his measures and counsels, is most undoubtedly a levying of war within this act. An actual
rising or insurrection for the redress of any supposed public grievance was always considered as an actual levying of war, under the old statute of Edward the 3rd,
The Jury again retired, and in a quarter of an hour returned into court, finding the prisoner Guilty on the third and fourth counts.
Clerk of Arraigns—Shall I call the prisoner for judgment, my lord *
Lord Chief Justice Abbott.—No, not now.
Mr. Attorney General,—It will be necessary that the jury should be summoned for Friday morning, as I fear there may have been some misunderstanding.
Lord Chief Justice Abbott.—Send notice to the jury to attend again on Friday morning: the officer shall go round as far as he can.
Foreman of the . your lordship have the goodness to discharge us from attending the ensuing trials
Lord Chief Justice Abbott.—On consulting with the other judges, we are of opinion, you may be excused from serving on the next trial; we cannot say your attendance shall be excused on future trials.
A Juryman (Mr. Goodchild).-We have had a very arduous duty to perform, and we shall hardly have time to recover ourselves.
Lord Chief Justice Abbott.—We hope something more will be done for you; but you will not be wanted before next Monday, at all events: further than that I cannot say.
Mr. Goodchild.—We do not press it further than that, my lord.
Mr. Justice Richardson.—Let it be announced that these trials will be resumed on Friday morning."
*See the following Cases,
703. The whole Proceedings on the Trial of JAMEs Ings, for High Treason, before the Court holden under a Special Commission, for the Trial of certain Offences therein mentioned, on the 21st and 22nd days of April : 1 Geo. IV. A. D. 1820.*
SESSIONS HOUSE, OLD BAILEY, FRIDAY, APRIL 21st, 1820. Present
The Right Hon. Lord Chief Justice Dallas.
JAMES INGs was set to the bar; and John Thomas Brunt, Richard Tidd, William Davidson, James William Wilson, John Harrison, Richard Bradburn, John Shaw Strange, James Gilchrist, and Charles Cooper, were placed at the barbehind.
The Jury panel was called over, commencing with No. 108.
-Charles Farmer, hardwareman, sworn. Christopher Dowson, ship-builder, challenged by the prisoner: William James Farmer, baker, challenged by the prisoner. David Newman, farmer, challenged by the Crown. George Smith, japanner, sworn. “George Thorp, clockcase-maker, challenged by the Crown. Henry Seaborn, cooper, excused on account of illness. Francis Sherborn, esq. and farmer, challenged by the prisoner. * Edward Simpson, shipwright, challenged by the risoner. William Davies, shopkeeper challenged by the Crown. Richard Franks, esq. and silk-mercer, challenged by the prisoner. Thomas Langley, ship-chandler, challenged by the Crown. *George Priest, esq. challenged by the prisoner. 'Samuel Wilson, gentleman and merchant, challenged by the prisoner. William Moore, bricklayer, sworn. Michael Atkins, esq. challenged by the Crown. James Ede, farmer, sworn.
ed by the Crown. *George Taylor, bricklayer, challenged by the risoner. John Woodward, gentleman, challenged by the prisoner.
* See the preceding and following Cases.
Edward Cherill, jeweller, challenged by the prisoner. John Mayne, gentleman, challenged by the prisoner. David Pain, esq. challenged by the prisoner. Richard Tucker, cheesemonger, challenged by the prisoner. Thomas Beachamp, farmer, sworn.
| Robert Ceeley, rigger, challenged by the pri
soner. Thomas Fagg, esq. and coachmaster, challenged by the Crown. Matthew Belcher, vintner, challenged by the Crown. Benjamin Watson, gentleman, challenged ‘by the prisoner. George Burrows, silversmith, fined for non-attendance, fine afterwards remitted on his appearance, and swearing he had been prevented being in time by indisposition. Edward Ellis, gentleman and stock-broker, challenged by the prisoner. Benjamin Blyth, organ-builder, sworn. William Clare, feather-dresser, challenged by the prisoner. John Jackson, glass-eutter, challenged by the prisoner. John Bock, gentleman and seedsman, sworn. Feliribooth, esq. and distiller, challenged by the prisoner. Charles Benham, market gardener, challenged by the Crown. To: Robins, silversmith, challenged by the rown. John Ray, gentleman, excused on account of the indisposition of a childing a dangerous state. Francis Dorrill, esq.challenged by the prisoner. William Percy, plasterer, sworn. John George Holmden, fuse-cutter, bhallenged by the prisoner. *Archibald Ritchey, stone-mason, challenged by the Crown. John King, gentleman, challenged by the Crown. Charles Elton Prescott, esq.challenged by the rprisoner.
- ; Rogers, farmer, sworn. “Alfred Batson, esq. and porter-dealer, challeng- || Ri
ard Laycock, esq., and cow-keeper, fined ofor non-attendance. George For, sawyer, challenged by the Crown. William Acock, plumber, challenged by the Crown. Edward Cuel, carpenter, challenged by the Crown
George Golding, surveyor, challenged...by the prisoner.
Mr. Solicitor General.—Gentlemen of the jury;-It is my duty to state this case on the art of the prosecution, and I am sure, knowing whom I now have the honour of addressing, that it is unnecessary for me to request your serious and patient attention to the particulars which I am about to detail; you must feel that you owe it to yourselves; you must feel that you owe it to the public justice of the country; you must feel in a particular manner that you owe it to the prisoner himself who now stands before you for his deliverance. Gentlemen, there is a circumstance to which in justice to the prisoner, it is my duty to advert. I should not have alluded to it if it must not of necessity have already come to your knowledge—I mean the conviction that has already taken place. I entreat and conjure you that you will not suffer that conviction at all to operate upon your minds, to the prejudice of the prisoner who now stands before you. You are to decide upon this case according to the impression which the evidence shall make upon your own minds; and you are not to be influenced by an impression which evidence that has already been heard may have made upon the minds of other men. You are to come to the consideration of this question totally divested of all previous prejudices and impressions, and you are to decide this case impartially, according to the evidence as it shall be given upon oath before you against the prisoner at the bar,
With respect to the law, as applicable to this subject, it will not be necessary for me to trouble you with a single observation. No doubt can be entertained upon it. No question has hitherto been raised in the course of these inquiries with respect to the law. The charge against the prisoner at the bar, divested of everything that is technical, is shortly and simply this; that he has conspired with other men, whose names will be mentioned in the course of these proceedings, to overturn by force and violence the laws and constitution of the country. This, though stated in technical language upon the record, is the substance of the charge against the prisoner at the bar. The object at which the parties aimed was to be effected by means of an extensive plan of assassination; it was to be effected also by other means to which I shall presently have occasion to direct your attention. In this stage of the prosecution, all that I have to do is, in a plain and simple manner, carefully abstaining from all exaggeration, to state to you the facts that will be detailed in evidence in support of this charge. I shall state them as I now know they will be proved, without distorting a single fact or circumstance to the prejudice of the prisoner at the bar. We are all interested in the fair and impartial administration of justice; no motives arising out of any particular circumstances can possibly operate upon the mind of a person standing in the situation in which I am now placed to lead him to forget his duty. The fair, imartial, and upright administration of justice is that upon which we justly pride ourselves; it is the best gift we enjoy under the laws and constitution of our country. The prisoner at the bar, with a person of the name of Thistlewood, a person of the name of Davidson, another of the name of Brunt, a person of the name of Wilson, and several others who will be mentioned in the course of this inquiry, held, in the early part of the year, secret meetings and consultations at a place known by the name or sign of the White Hart, in Brook's-market. Those consultations were held in a back room in a yard belonging to that public-house. I shall not trouble you by stating what took place at those meetings, because, after they had been held in that place for a short period of time, for some reason to which it is unnecessary that I should direct your attention, they left that place, and held their meetings in another situation to which I am now about to advert. One of the prisoners, a man of the name of Brunt, who is a shoemaker by trade, lived in a place called Fox-court, in Gray's-inn-lane; he occupied two apartments in the front of the house; there was in the back of the house, upon the same floor, another unfurnished room, and that room was hired for the purpose of continuing those meetings which had been formerly held at the White Hart. The prisoner at the bar and Brunt, in conjunction, hired the apartment. This took place about
the middle of the month of January, and from that period to Wednesday the 23rd of February, to which your attention will often be called in the course of this inquiry, those meetings were held always once, and frequently twice a day, by the persons whom I have mentioned, all of them, except Thistlewood, being in humble situations of life, journeymen mechanics—Thistlewood himself was in a more elevated situation, having formerly, I believe, held a commission in his majesty's service. The object of those meetings was, to form a plan for overturning the government of the country; and the plan which was formed, which will be proved to you in the most distinct manner by the evidence I shall lay before you, was of this nature. In the first place it was P.I.: that when an opportunity offered, all his majesty's ministers, being assembled at a cabinet dinner, which is usually held about once a week during the meeting of parliament, should be assassinated. It was proposed that arms should be provided for that purpose, which I will by and by describe. About thirty or forty persons were considered as sufficient for the accomplishment of this object, and it was arranged that on knocking at the door, under pretence of delivering a letter, a party armed with swords, pistols, and hand-grenades, should rush into the room where those persons were assembled at dinner, and that they should be all destroyed. Another party was to watch the stair-case, to prevent any assistance from the servants; a third, the area, and other persons were to take care that no interruption should occur to the execution of this project from persons without. This was a part of the general plan. It was thought the blow would create such an impression, in striking off all the first authorities in the country, that it would afford an opportunity for carrying into complete effect the other projects of the conspirators. One of these projects was, to set fire to various parts of the town, and a party to be headed by a person of the name of Palin (who was one of the association) was to execute that project. Another P. was, to take possession of some pieces of cannon stationed in the Artilleryground. The party to carry into effect that part of the plan was to be headed by a person of the name of Cook. A fourth party was to take possession of two pieces of artillery stationed in Gray's-inn-lane, It is necessary for me to inform you that all the persons whose assistance was to be collected on this occasion were not to be let into the whole history and contrivance of this plot. The secret was confined to those who were in the habit of assembling in Fox-court; but they had associates without, who understood that a plan was going ou; that something was in preparation to which they were to lend their assistance, when it was ripe for execution, and that when ripe for execution, the particulars were to be communicated to them. For the purpose of carrying this into execuWOL, XXXIII.
tion, arms of various description were procured. It is unnecessary for me to particularize the whole of them, but I shall direct your attention to one or two descriptions of weapons. Independently of swords and pistols and a great number of pikes, there were, collected, for this purpose, a number of hand-grenades. These were collected chief% by the prisoner Davidson : they were ormed, each of them, of a tin box filled with about a quarter of a pound of gunpowder; a fuse communicated with the interior; large pieces of iron were placed round the box, and the whole was secured with cord, and afterwards dipped into pitch and tar, and cemented strongly together. Those grenades were intended, in the first instance, to be thrown into the house where the ministers were assembled at dinner: and they were also to be made use of for the purpose of aiding in the further projects which the parties had in view. Another description of instrument, prepared for the occasion, were fire-balls, which were called by them illumination-balls, to be made use of by the party, under the direction of Palin, in setting fire to different buildings in the metropolis. These preparations went on for a considerable period of time. As the instruments of destruction which I have thus described were successively prepared, they were brought to the place in Fox-court for inspection, and they were afterwards transferred from that place to what was called the dépôt, the lodgings of one of the conspirators, a man of the name of Tidd, who lived in a place called Hole-in-the-wall-passage, near Brook's-market. The plan which had been thus formed, before it was completely matured and ready for execution, was suspended by the death of the king. In consequence of that event the cabinet dinners were discontinued, and it became therefore impossible to execute the project at the period when it was originally intended, and you will find these parties were continually expressing their disappointment at the delay. They became at last so impatient, that, on Saturday the 19th of February, they determined to consider whether some other plan, if not so effectual, at least to a degree effectual for the accomplishment of the purpose they had in view, might not be substituted for it; and accordingly they determined, that on the following day, Sunday, in the forenoon, a committee should be appointed for the purpose of considering what measures should be taken, it was then considered that there was no immediate prospect of all the ministers meeting together, so as to enable them to attempt the enterprise which had been contemplated. On the Sunday, they accordingly met together, and formed themselves into a committee; and Thistlewood, who undoubtedly was the leader and framer of the whole plan, proposed that as it was probable they might be able to collect about forty men for the purpose of executing what was denominated the west-endjob, forty determined persons calculated for 3 Q
an enterprise of that kind should divide themselves into four parties, for the purpose of putting to death, at the same time, four of those who were considered the leading members of the cabinet. This plan was agitated, proposed, considered, and at last resolved upon. It was determined that all the rest of the project should be carried into effect, as it had been originally intended; but that instead of striking the blow at all his majesty's ministers, as circumstances did not permit that to be carried into effect, they would confine themselves with the means they possessed to the taking off four of the leading members of the cabinet, whose names will be mentioned to you in the course of the evidence. The prisoner at the bar expressed a hope that he should be of the party destined to put to death my lord Castlereagh, and he exclaimed, “It will not be necessary to draw lots for the purpose of knowing who shall be the individual to put him to death, for I am ready to do that with my own hand.” After this resolution was adopted, the parties separated, and it was understood, that if on the following Wednesday (which was the day on which the cabinet dinners were usually given) there should be no opportunity of striking the great blow, then the plan should be carried into effect in the manner I have now stated. They met again on the Monday, and also on the Tuesday morning. In the mean time the king's funeral had taken place, and as a proper interval had elapsed, it was considered that those dinners might again be renewed; and in the latter end of the preceding week, either on the Friday or on the Saturday, cards of invitation had been issued by the desire of lord Harrowby, requesting the attendance of the cabinet ministers at a dinner to be given at his house, on Wednesday the 23rd. You are aware that these dinners are usually announced in the public papers, and particularly in the papers which are supposed to be in the interest of Government. The court reporter sent the account of the invitation to the New Times, and
it appeared in that paper on the morning of
Tuesday the 22nd instant. These conspirators were assembled on that morning, at their place of rendezvous, in Fox-court. It was mentioned that a dinner was to be held on the following day, and that it was advertised in the newspapers. A newspaper, was sent for, the paragraph was read, and the utmost exultation was expressed (in terms so gross that I do not choose to repeat them) by the risoner now on his trial. Every thing was ...} in a bustle, and they determined to go round to their different associates, to get them in readiness, to carry into effect the enterprise on the following night. I should state to you that they did not consider that the room in Fox-court would be a convenient spot, from whence to issue to the execution of their project. They were exposed there to a good deal of observation, and it was
at too remote a distance from the spot where the blow was to be struck. In order, therefore, to carry on their design with more facility, they had hired premises in an obscure street, called Cato-street, near the Edgwareroad; a street through which there is no passage for carriages. Premises consisting of a small stable, a cart-house, a loft, and two rooms communicating with the loft, were hired for the purpose of carrying the plot into effect, from a person of the name of Firth, by Harrison, one of the parties most active in the conspiracy; and it was determined that on the following evening, about six or seven o'clock, armed in the manner necessary for accomplishing their object, they should assemble at these premises in Cato-street. When this project was thus nearly ripe for execution, it was conceived that they might, with the less danger, communicate the particulars of it for the purpose of getting additional assistance; and accordingly a communication upon the subject was made by one of the conspirators, Wilson, to a person of the name of Iliden, a milkman, living in the neighbourhood of Manchester-square. Wilson told him that there was a design to overturn the government of the country: he told him that this was to be effected by means of assassinating his majesty's ministers, who were to dine on the following day at lord Harrowby's; and that there were parties who were to take possession of the artillery in Gray's-inn-lane, and in the city, and another party to set fire to the town, in different parts, for the purpose of producing general confusion and disorder; and as the labouring classes of the people were supposed to be disaffected to the government of the country, that it was hoped a general rising would take place, and that a force would be collected sufficient to set at defiance the remaining authorities of government. When this communication was made to
Hiden, he listened to it with astonishment; and
when required to join in it, he immediately
assented, because he felt that when such a proposition was made to him by persons capable of forming such a plan, if he should refuse his assent to it, his own personal security would be endangered. He promised, therefore, to meet the conspirators, said he would bring such accession of force as was in his power, and after this communication was made, returned to his own home. He then began to reflect seriously upon the nature of this diabolical project; he turned in his mind what course he should pursue, and he immediately sat down and wrote a letter to my lord Castlereagh, communicating the particulars of the
lan. With this letter he proceeded to St. James's-square, afraid to knock at the door of my lord Castlereagh, lesthe should be observed, but remaining in the neighbourhood for the purpose of seeing his lordship in the street, of delivering to him this letter, and of making the important disclosure. No opportunity of carrying this design into effect occurred, and he then