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Can you take upon yourself to swear that And, after he had read the book, it was put no such words were uttered by Mr. Briellat in his pocket without a single observation upon that occasion ?-No such thing. No.
Which went out of the shop first, Mr. Briel Not a single observation was made by any lat or the boy ?-The boy, one of his fellow- body? -No, not a word: away he went and servants called him.
said no more about it. At what period of the conversation, or the reading, did he go out?-While he was
James Fortescue sworn.--Examined by Mr. reading the book one of his fellow-servants
Vaughan. came and told him the supper was ready, or What business are you?-A coach and cart something of that sort, and he went away; wheelwright. Mr. Briellat went away with Mr. Fortescue. Where do you live?-In the Curtain road,
Do you know Mr. Briellat, the defendant? The boy, Woodbridge, was there?-Yes.
-Yes. And there was no conversation of any sort? Did you see him any time in October last -Yes.
in the shop of Mr. Davis, in Shoreditch ? What was it about?-He had a little book Yes. that he said he was going to read, and he Were you present when he came in ?-I seldom begins a book without reading it was, in about five or perhaps ten minutes bethrough.
fore he came in. Briellat read about the earthquake, and Will you relate, as well as you can recollect, then not a word more was said, but fortescue what passed during the time that you were and he walked out ?--I suppose he read on for there with him?— Yes; I was in Davis's shop a quarter of an hour or twenty minutes. when Briellat came up to the door, with some
Did he put the book in his pocket?-I don't irons upon his shoulder, and some fish in his know.
hand; he came in at the door and says, genHe did not say a word about the duke of tlemen, how do you all do? we made answer, York?--No.
we were very well. What news have you, There was no conversation at all but merely says Briellat? We said, we have no news at talking about this book and reading this book, all, you are likeliest to know as you have been and that was all that passed ?-No, when in the city ; says he, I know of none in parBriellat first came in, before he began read ticular. We said, why, is there none at all? ing, there were some words passed; he came Why, says he, there are two or three things in and said, how do you do, gentlemen all ? Aying; but I don't know what it is particuI believe that was the words, as nigh as I can larly, for I have almost forgot, says he, I must recollect.
recollect; he recollected a bit: why, says he, You won't be positive ?-No; I said, how I will tell you, the first paragraph is, that they do you do, Mr. Briellat? I hope you are very have tried the queen of France, and it is rewell. He said, he had been towards the city; ported that she is cast for death, and, says he, and I asked him, what news? and he said, they say that they have sent a proposition or nothing particular ; but I am almost tired. something of the kind to the emperor of GerO yes, there is news too, says he, they say many, it so be as he would wish to save her ; the queen of France has been tried and cast, the proposition was sent, and they demanded and they had sent to the emperor of Germany an answer at such a time, about fourteen concerning it, that if he would draw his troop's days, from them; that if so he he would draw from the frontiers, they would save the queen, his forces from the frontiers, that they would and would give him fourteen days to con save she and make a good provision for ber sider of it; and he said, that the French army and her fan:ily; that was all very good we and the Spanish army had had a battle, and thought Why, says he, the french and the French had got the better; and, says he, Spaniards have had an engagement, and the I have got a book that was lent me, concern- Spaniards are drove from the frontiers, I ing the times now in France, a prophecy, I understand. That is all that I know about believe he called it, and then he read it. that
He did not say any thing about the duke of That was the end of the news ?- It was the York's army being taken No.
end of the news; he said, he bad got an old Recollect yourself?-Oh! I recollect per- prophecy, or something of that kind, in a fectly.
painphlet which he had seen soinewhere and Nothing about the duke of York having borrowed, that related to the present state of like to have been taken ?-No.
affairs in France ; when the news was over It was a book written by an anonymous he pulled it out of bis pocket and opened it, writer ?-I do not know.
and began about the middle of it; the beginDid he not say so ?-No.
ning of it was in 1747 ; I took particular noNor any thing about the French attempting tice of the year, because it was the year I was to land here?-No.
born in. But all at once he pulled out the book? Do you mean to say, that was the beginNo; I said let us bave the news first, and the ning of the pamphlet?-No; the begipuing book afterwards.
where Mr. Briellat began reading, there was a He was an acquaintance of your's, was he date of 1747, and this history or this prophecy not?-Yes. was taken out of the Revelations, John the He lived by Kingsland ?-He lived in Kingsdivine's prophecy, and it went on concerning land-road. the revolution in France, as it signified this You have been acquainted with him some prophecy prophesied much like the troubles time, have not you?-No; but I have some in France at this present time, and it was sup- reason to know him. posed by the prophecy that this French na Upon your oath, were you not a witness in tion was the place where these troubles his behalf at the Old Bailey !-No. should begin.
I mean a man who was tried and convicted What part of the Revelations was it that of a highway robbery at the Old Bailey, when the prophecy supposed to have that mean- you appeared in his behalf?—No. ing? -The inth chapter, I think; there was You remember his being tried?-No; I to be a very great woc and a very great earth- remember hearing talking of his robbing the quake, and the tenth part of the city was to mail. fall.
Do you remember his being hanged in the Was this explained to relate entirely to the year 1778?-Sellons was not hanged. affairs of France ?-Yes; it was supposed that Which of them was then ?-I don't know, I the nation of France was the place fixed for suppose it was his accomplice. these troubles in that prophecy at this pre Then you have heard of it?--I heard he sent troublesome time.
had turned evidence. How long did the reading of this prophecy And you mean to say, you never were a last ?-He read about twenty minutes or witness for that man at the Old Bailey better, near half an hour.
No, nor any where else. Did you sce the butcher's, boy, Wood You never were examined upon that trial? bridge, there at that time?-I cannot say I -No; I speak the truth. did see him; there were some butcher's lads You had no concern at all in that trial?-at the door, but they were there a very little No. time.
Did you know any thing of this meeting at After the reading, what passed ? - Nothing Hackney?-No, I know nothing of it. was said, but he shut up his book, took bis Now, as to this book that was read, there fish in his hand and went away; I went with was nothing in it about kings ?-No. him part of the way; I staid till Mr. Briellat Nor kingly government?-No. went away; he wished the people a good Nor a word about monarchy ?-No. night, and I walked with him to the turning What was it that was to be overturned, for which goes to his house, and I went up Holy- 1 happen to know what book you are alluding well-lane.
to?-1 don't know. Did you hear any conversation about the Do you mean to say, there was nothing in abolition of kings from the face of the earth it about overturning monarchy? -Not a word. on the part of Briellat? - No.
And this book was read and put in his You were there before he came in, and pocket, without a single observation from him went away with him ?-Yes.
or any body else? Yes. During that time did you hear any thing And as to the butcher's boy, whether he about the French landing 100,000 men, or was there or not, you will not be positive ?about the duke of York ?-- Nothing at all. No; as to Sellons, I was obliged to summon
Can you positively recollect so as to be able him at Whitechapel-court. to swear that?-I stand here before God and Do you mean to deny that Sellons was man, and I would not tell a lie.
either a principal or accomplice in the robbery James Fortescue cross-examined by Mr. Sil- of the nail in 1778 ?– I know nothing about
it any farther than people say.
Mr. Silvester. Gentlemen of the jury, it How long have you lived there !--Near now becomes my turn to make a few obsertwenty years.
vations upon the defence set up for this man In the year 1778 you lived there?-Yes. at your bar. You have had a long declama.
You have been a witness here before? -No tion, of no less than an hour and a half, in never upon any thing of any kind.
which all ranks of men, from the highest to In no court whatever?-No, no more than the lowest, have been libelled; there is not a trifling thing before a justice.
a man, there is not a court but what has been Do you mean the jury should understand attacked, in my opinion, in a very improper that you were never examined as a witness in manner. In the first place, we are told (and a court of justice?- No.
the gentleman avows it himself), that his Never at the Old Bailey ?-No, never. I principles are, that a reform is necessary, and never was there in my life.
that the constitution can be altered and Do you remember a man of the name of ameliorated by a set of banditti assembling in Edward Sellons ? - Yes.
fields round this metropolis. VOL. XXII.
Mr. Vaughan. I said no such thing—that stone to you, who says, that juries are judges is your interpretation.
of the law as well as judges of the fact. So Xir. Silvester. It is my interpretation. they are, and you are the persons to deterGentlemen, he justifies at this moinent the mine the fact, having received your informameeting at Briellat's and says he had a tion from the court of what the law of the right to call any number of people be pleased case is. together, for the purpose of amending the Gentlemen, it is told you, that the best constitution. He says, the first charge is not evidence that the nature of the case will proved, because, though it states that this admit of ought always to be produced and an man has said, that “ a reformation could not author is quoted for it. But, gentlemen, its be effected without a revolution," he says, likewise, by the same author, said, that one the meaning of the word revolution is, to go witness, if believed, is fully sufficient. So it back to a former state Where are we to is; we all know, that in many transactions draw the line? Are we to go back to the late that pass one good credible witness is suffrevolution in this country, lo the state of the cient. But it is said, that it is necessary, that savages of America, or to the present state of every witness should be called. Why so? ü the people in France, who are without either the gentleman thought it was law that he law or religion; but we thank God we have was stating to the jury, and did not mean to both laws and religion.
mislead them, why did he not call all the perGentlemen, it has been told you, that the sons who were present? But as the gentlecourts of justice have in these times inflicted man perfectly well knows that some persons more severe punishments than have ever might hear the whole and others not tbc been done since the revolution. It does not whole of it, you are to impute perjury to that become us practisers at the bar to find fault boy, who can have no interest, who tells yon with those judgments, which have been given a plain fact, whose character they have det by men of the first character, by men who touched, because they knew they could not consider well and judge right what punish- affect it; he tells you a plain natural story, ments men deserve, nor is this or any other that they were conversing about the news, court to be intimidated, and told that these about the duke of York being taken and the punishments are too severe; it is with the army; and then he states, that there was a court to punish the offender according to the book, which Briellat had in his custody, and crime, and to hold him up as an example to which he read, wishing that all kings should deter others from committing the like of- be abolished from the face of the earth. fences.
Gentlemen, I don't know whether it has hapGentlemen, it is told you, and made a kind dened to you, but it strikes me, that it is a of triumph, that formerly the system of book purporting to be a discourse upon the seform was supported by our virtuous and Revelations, in which the fali of monarchy is immaculate prime minister, as if to be im- predicted to happen in the year 1792, anul as maculate and virtuous were in these times a people have supposed is applicable to France. subject of reproach. But, gentlemen, we are Gentlemen, it is said, that we ought to propow trying a plain fact, which, I think, is duce this book. Is it so? Who has the book? hrought home to your satisfaction. My Briellat himself, for he put it in his pocket: learned friend called upon you to consider he might therefore have produced it, but be your wives and children. I, in my turn, also has not produced it. claim your protection for your wives and Gentlemen, two witnesses are called to children; the only way to protect them is by contradict this boy, and upon whose testi. supporting the constitution and the govern- mony you are to impute perjury to him. One ment under which we all live ; for when this of them tells you, he does not recollect wheis overturned there is an end of all our pro- ther the boy was there, therefore bis testiperty, and every thing becomes anarchy and mony is not material. The first witness tells confusion.
you, that Briellat sellom read a book but Gentlemen, it has been told you, that I what he finished, and when he had finished personally, having practised a long time at the reading, without saying a single word, he put bar, am possessed of some art, some contriv- it in his pocket and went away. Is that pro. ance. I don't know that any man need to be bable? Is it likely? He takes out a book and ashamed of conducting this or any cause to reads about the tenth part of a city falling by the best of his ability. I don't know that it an earthquake, and not a single observation is a reproach to that gentleman for exerting follows it, not even that it was wonderful that his abilities in a bad cause, which his certainly in the year 1747 this should have been preis, neither is it a reproach to me that I have dicted, but not a single observation was made had the honour of practising in this court, and Gentlemen, it is possible that the witnesses before a man who understands law as well as may be speaking of different times; for the any of the judges. It is the pride of my last witness does not recollect whether the heart to attend before such a bench, from boy was there or not, and yet we are to be whence you will hear the law laid down as it told that we are a nation of informers, and ought to be laid down.
that we shall all become informers, which is The learned gentleman has quoted Black- a disgrace to us.
Gentlemen, the boy, in my mind, acted reformation took place, and that could not be wisely, he acted prudently in not talking of done without a revolution. this to any body, but going with an officer to Now, gentlemen, really I ought to make an a magistrate and telling the story, Some of apology to you for taking up so much of your my witnesses have bcen asked about being time upon so plain a question, after the long alarmed. Why, gentlemen, one is to be speech you have heard ; in which you have alarmed when seditious men are planting had ministers attacked, the bar attacked, the themselves from east to west in various whole nation attacked, in short every body, parts of the town. I say, gentlemen, when that could be lugged in, has been attacked in one sees that, it is high time for every honest this business. The gentleman has told you man to join to put a stop to it, wheni persons that if you give a verdict improperly you are are collected together thus in every part of the forsworn; Gentlemen, he does not know you, town. When you hear one man speaking if he supposes you could give a verdict impro seditious words in one part of the town, and perly; he does not know me, if he thinks I another in another, you have reason for fear could ask you so to do. I wish nothing but a and for alarm; and a great deal of praise is verdict consistent with your oaths, consistent due to those who stand forward as your de with your consciences. I know you well, you fenders. Then the only attack is upon this are respectable men in your situation, and boy, whose testimony, in my inind, remains you will give a just verdict; whatever that unshaken; but what do they say to the evi- verdict is, 1, for one, shall be satisfied. The dence of all the other witnesses? Here is law has made you the guardians of our liberty, Goodman, who tells you that he is a publican, our property and our lives from the highest to that he heard a conversation, in which this man the lowest;-the highest cannot do injustice, stated that there should be a revolution, and nor the lowest be oppressed with impunity, that nothing would do good but a revolution. and therefore you are to disregard every thing His fears are not alarmed till a meeting is to of that kind, on the one side as well as on the be held at this man's house, at which all the other; it is not because Briellat, as has been persons in that neighbourhood are called toge- stated to you, is a man of property, not bether. Is this a legal meeting? Have we no cause he is a man of fortune, or has had the other mode, or could they apply to none of honour to sit in that box, that shall screen him their law friends to know how they were to to day-I only wish that persons in higher be assembled ? Have we no sheriffs whose situations, who are guilty of like offences, business it is to call a meeting? Have we not were also brought to this bar. Here you have two worthy representatives who might have not a low man, it is acknowledged that he is assembled them? But Mr. Briellat is to a man of property, that he is in a good situaassemble, in the neighbourhood of Spital- tion in life, that he is your equal, and therefields, all the men who were out of work, and fore becomes the more an object of danger. harangue them upon a table. I don't impute It is said this is an improper prosecution. I what he said upon the table but to show the should be glad to know if you were in the disposition of that man's mind,
situation of the attorney-general, and a perGentlemen, it has been stated to you that son were to come to you, and lay information application was made to two magistrates that a man had been speaking seditious words, Have we any evidence of that? None at all; | for the purpose of exciting a disturbance in the fact is not true, and it is not their inter- this country; and that afterwards he was ruption now that will prove it. They knew about to hold a meeting at his house and in the fact would not bear them out, and they, his field, whether you would not think it your as lawyers, ought to know that that is not duty to bring forward such a man? He hears the way to call a meeting of the county, the what the witnesses have to say, and he says it only legal meeting of the county is called by ought to be inquired into; then let a jury of the sheriff,
the country inquire whether these facts are Gentlemen, have they attempted to show true, if true he incurs the punishment due to any animosity in this man, Goodman, or is it them; if they are not true the magistrate has any imputation upon him that he is a con- been imposed upon, but that is no disgrace to stable? 'many of you, I dare say, have served him; for it is the duty of every man concerned the office of constable with credit to your in the administration of justice to lay facts of selves; and whether a man is appointed by a heinous nature before a court and jury for the court leet or by the magistrates, does it fol- them to determine whether they are or are low that he is to be a subject of reproach, that not true, and that is the simple question for he has forgotten every thing that is just and you to try. I shall not go through the whole honourable, and that he is for a paltry expec- of the case ahout a reform in parliament, for tancy to perjure himself? But does it stand it has nothing to do with it, it is only made upon his evidence alone? No, a very respect use of as an argument on the part of the able tradesman, Mr. Alport, confirms his tes- counsel for the defendant to captivate your timony in every respect, and then Mr. Adams understanding, and if possible to prejudice does the same; he fixes it in the very words your minds; you are to suppose that all these of the indictment, he tells you that he said, notable reforiners are persons who are your no good would be done in this country till á friends, and who will ease you of taxes. It
may be so in France, which is now the most | short principles, in my opinion, it will carry unfortunate country in the world, without you through this business as fair, honest, laws, religion or government, and yet you are uprighit men, discharging that duty which told that taxation is a burthen which you you owe your country. Certainly we cannot ought not to bear. I can only say you hear it but admit that no man is punishable for the in common with the rest of your fellow citi: , discontent and dissatisfaction of his own zens; here the taxes are proportioned to your mind; men have a right to their own opi: property, it does not fall upon the person, but nions, and I should be sorry to see a man upon the property; it was not so in France, stand at this or any other bar in any criminal and yet that is made use of as an argument court of judicature, because he bad in an unto throw a prejudice upon a prosecution of guarded manner delivered sentiments not this kind. And then you are told that there strictly legal, or which, if construed too are some rotten boroughs which ought not to strictly, might be considered as seditious ; be represented in parliament; but whether but, gentlemen, no man in a discontented they ought or ought not is not for us to dis- state of mind is to infuse that discontent into cuss in a court of justice, nor is it for Briellat the minds of others, by which he disturbs to discuss at the head of his weavers near the public tranquillity, and becomes a very Spitalfields. I say, gentlemen, I ought to capital offender' against the laws of his make an apology for detaining you so long.- country; because, whatever disturbs the All you have heard has been a declamation tranquillity of the kingdom is a general detriand an attack upon the government, and
ment to us all: therefore it appears to me upon those who are administrators of the that the question here for your consideration government of this country, without giving is, whether this man comes within that an answer to a single observation; the only latter description; if he does not, I think point of evidence has been to discredit that you ought to acquit him; but it, upon the vitness, and instead of discrediting him, I am whole of this business, you think he is of that of opinion he is confirmed,
disposition, why then certainly you can have Gentlemen, having said so much, I shall no doubt in your minds, and you will find him sit down perfectly satisfied on which side your guilty. verdict will be, because I know you are men Gentlemen, in this case I would have you of sense, I know you are men of integrity. go rather farther than what you usually take
upon you, to be judges of the fact; but I SUMMING UP.
would have you in some degrce be judges of Mr. Mainwuring. Gentlemen of the Jury; the law also : you will take into your consiThis is an indictment against the defendant, deration, not merely whether he said the Thomas Briellat, charging him with certain words, but you will consider also the intent misdemeanors, in unlawtully and seditiously with which he uttered them. uttcring, publishing and declaring in a certain Gentlemen, it has been said by the learned conversation which he then and there held counsel for the defendant, that a reform is concerning the constitution, the words fol necessary, and that he thinks so; he has a lowing, ibat is to say, a reformation cannot right so to think; but the question is, what be etfected without a revolution; and then method is to be taken to obtain it: a man there is another count follows in this indict wishing to bring about a reform has no right ment, charging him with the same, that we, to entorce it by violence, by force of arms, meaning the people of this realm, have no that is no less an offence than high treason. occasion for any king; and then there is a Gentlemen, in observing upon one of the third charge in the indictment, stating him counts in this indictment, where it is stated, to have said, that there will never be any that the detendant said a reformation cannot peace or good times until all kings are abo be effected without a revolution, it is asked, lished from the face of the earth. Then what is a revolution ?-a revolution dues not there are other counts mentioning these mean a subversion of government, it means words, and then comes a seventh count, which a revolving of things. It may have that charges the defendant to have said, it is my meaning in some cases; but you must take wish that there were no kings at all; and the subject matter; if it is applied to the the ninth count, charges the defendant to government of this country, it is a subversion, have said, I wish the French would land a total change in the government of the coun100,000 men in England lo tight against all try; there cannot be two opinions about it. the government party.
Gentlemen, I need not trouble you with Gentlemen, these are the charges laid any farther observations before I state the against the defendant as words spoken by evidence that has been given to you upon him with a seditious and a malicious design. this occasion, and you will be to consider how
Gentlemen, it appears to me that upon far the defendant is guilty or not, according this occasion your duty and your province to the circumstances which I shall shortly lay lie in a very narrow compass indeed, that before you. you have no occasion to be perplexed or [Here Mr. Mainwaring summed up the entangled with history or politics; if you will evidence on both sides to the jury, and then only impress upon your minds one or two proceeded as follows. :