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head. Subsequently came an order that such of the gen-
tlemen of the 4th troop of Horse Guards (commanded
by the Earl of Dundonald) as followed trades, should
abandon such lay occupations within three months,
or dispose of their posts. This strange order becomes
easier to understand, when it is remembered that ' gen-
tlemen ' is the word still applied to the whole regiment ;
and that, in 171 8, Government did not like the practice
of the soldier being half the day a civilian. Some
solace was awarded to the army generally for various
restrictions. Pay was advanced to 55. a week ; and
clothes were to be furnished, as in the last Charles's
days, without deductions. This Stuart practice did not
satisfy the perverse soldier. Two or three times a week,
privates who had talked in too laudatory terms of King
James, or who had deserted King George, were to be
seen by thousands of spectators in the Park, under-
going the severe punishment — some of running, other
of walking, the gauntlet. In either case the flagellation
was severe. In October, when it was thought expe-


dient to reform several regiments, which were accord-
ingly ordered to be ' broke,' some men and, it is said,
a whole regiment at Nottingham, refused to lay down
their arms. Great discretion was required to tide
smoothly over these perils.

There was, however, no appearance of any sense of
peril at Court, where gaiety with a certain amount of
quaintness prevailed. The people who attended there
were of a mixed quality. On the little Duke of Glou-
cester's birthday. Lord Lovat was to be seen bearing
the sword of state before the king, to the Eoyal Chapel.
On a levee day, the pushing, preaching, loyal, reverend
Charles Lambe, with aU the sermons he had preached
against traitors, during the rebellion, printed in one
volume, laid them at the king's feet, kissed the king's
hand, and got nothing by his motion. On another
levee day, Colley Gibber was at Court, holding daintily
a printed copy of ' The Nonjuror,' opened at the dedica-
tion, which he presented, kneeling, to his Majesty, who
gave him his hand to kiss, and promised him a ' pm'se '
for his work. Colley got the purse with a couple of
hundred guineas in it. On a drawing-room day, a
stranger courtier stood in the royal presence, namely, a
woman who had journeyed from Lanark, under the
impulse of a ' longing ' to kiss the royal hand. This
inclination was gratified, and, imprudently, a gift was
added of twenty guineas, to take the lady home again —
a circumstance which greatly moved sundry other wives
in the same direction. When the Eev. Mr. Peploe,
of Preston, who had stuck to his Hanoverian principles,

A SCENE IN 'bedlam: . 315

while the Jacobites lorded it, in that town, made his
appearance at Court, Whig zeal described the king as
waxing merry, not to say witty. His Majesty is re-
ported to have remarked that, ' Peep low should look
high.' Loyal people laughed at the joke, but Mr.
Peploe laughed with better reason, on being appointed
Warden of Manchester College, He was afterwards
made Bishop of Carlisle. On a later occasion, Colonel
Oughton was to be seen, pulling a shy private of the
2nd Foot Guards, through the press, to the front of
the throne, where the man was duly presented to his
Majesty, with a copy of an ode which he had written on
'Liberty.' He was the first soldier who obtained pre-
ferment, not on professional, but on literary, grounds.

After receptions like the above, the king usually
honoured some Whig nobleman with his company, at
dinner or supper — fearless, though the air was full of
sinister reports. The Prince and Princess of Wales, on
their parts, did not want for mirth. They went to see
the mad folk in ' Bedlam,' and had especially good
sport with a demented creature who thought herself a
queen, and who solemnly married them to each other,
amid royal bursts of questionable laughter.

Throughout the year the Nonjurors continued to
be harassed by the Government. Their chapels were
pointed out by the Whig press to the mob, for destruc-
tion. Sometimes the pulj)it was protected by a burly
butcher or two. No man was admitted who did not
wear a black ribbon at his button-hole. Every woman
was suspected who came to divine service without a


black necklace. Loyal officials, notwithstanding, would
force their way in, tender the oath of allegiance to the
congregation, and arrest all those who declined to take
it, unless they could show they had been already sworn.
When a report was circulated that the Nonjurors had
' some design ' afoot, the Whig press piously hoped
they ' miglit all be blasted, like their departed brother,
Sheppard ! '

One at least of these pious loyalists came to grief
Mmself His name was Burridge. He was editor
(' writer ') or sub-editor (' corrector ') of one of the
three ' Weekly Journals ' — that one which had for its
second name ' The British Gazetteer.' Loyal and pious
Burridge got so drunk in a tavern as to lose all con-
trol over his tongue. He let it loose in the utterance
of inexpressibly horrible blasphemies, for which he was
indicted and found guilty. Loyal as he was, Burridge
did not escape. His own paper very coolly recorded
that he had, on such a morning, been whipt from the
New Church in the Strand to Charing Cross, and then
sent to prison for a month, there further to remain till
he had paid a fine of 20s. The ' Jacks ' were jubilant,
and cheered lustily when the hangman ' laced ' the poor
wretch's back with his whip, as Burridge passed at the
cart's tail slowly along the Strand. These ' Jacks ' who
gloried in seeing a blasphemous Whig thus mauled
were not very religious people themselves. There was
complaint being constantly made that Jacobites who
went through the formality of attending church — and
particularly the ladies — made a practice of laughing,


sneering, or otlierwise showing their contempt, when-
ever the king and royal family were prayed for.

One of the tumultuous Jacobite incidents of the
year was the passage of the Eev. Mr. Bisse, of Bristol,
from the Western Eoad to the house of the messenger
who had him in custody, at the cost of 65. 8(i. daily,
for his keep. Bisse, in the spring of the year, had
preached a sermon to an ultra-Jacobite congregation,
from this suggestive text. Psalm xciv. 20-23 : ' Shall
the throne of iniquity have fellowship with thee, which
frameth mischief by a law ? They gather themselves
together against the soul of the righteous, and con-
demn the innocent blood. But the Lord is my de-
fence, and my God is the rock of my refuge. And He
shall bring upon them their own iniquity, and shall cut
them off in their own wickedness : yea, the Lord our
God shall cut them off.' The sermon proved to be
more directly audacious than the text was suggestive.
Bisse impressed upon his hearers that God hated usur-
pations, although, as they knew, he permitted them.
God had allowed an usurpation of now thirty years'
duration in England, where, he said, there had been
neither laws nor parliament since James 11. 's days. He
is reported to have added : ' The present possessor is
obliged to unite with Turks, infidels, and heretics,
to save his bacon ! ' The treason was as malicious
as the expression of it was vulgar. Messengers
were sent down to arrest Bisse, on whom they laid
hands on the following Sunday, in church. But the
Jacobite congregation arose, they beat and repulsed


the messengers, and they triumphantly rescued their
pastor !

The offender, however, was in a short time ar-
rested. A crowd assembled, to cheer or hiss him, on
his way to the messenger's house, in Charles Street,
Westminster. Between Bisse's various examinations,
he seems to have been a prisoner at large — but bound to
return to custody, nightly. He abused the hberty, if
there be truth in the charge, that at this period he
preached in a Nonjuring chapel, to this text from Eze-
kiel xxi. 25-27 : ' And thou, profane wicked prince
of Israel, whose day is come, when iniquity shall
have an end, Thus saith the Lord God ; Eemove the
diadem, and take off the crown : this shall not be the
same : exalt him that is low, and abase him that is
high. I will overturn, overturn, overturn it : and it shall
be no more, until he come whose right it is ; and I will
give it him ! ' Such was the ring of the Jacobite metal ;
and Bisse, in his defence, asserted that he was only a
humble instrument in God's hands, giving forth the
sound which God impelled.

This Jacobite uttered those sounds in churches
in three separate counties. He was found guilty in
Somersetshire, Wiltshire, and Buckinghamshire ; and
the Court of King's Bench condemned him to stand
twice in the pillory ; to be imprisoned for four years,
to pay a fine of 500^., and to find sureties to the
amount of 2,000/. for his good behaviour during life.
Bisse stood in the pillory at the Eoyal Exchange and
at Charing Cross. The Whigs complained that he was


held SO loosely, he could withdraw his head when he
pleased. Favoured by the Jacobite hangman, Bisse was
protected by a Jacobite mob. A collection was made
for him on the spot ; and people in carriages who did
not contribute hberally were roughly handled. Women
flung flowers on to the scaffold. A single individual
who ventured to make an observation aloud, of a
Whiggish quality, was compelled to ask Bisse's pardon
on his knees. For the rudely, out-spoken priest, the
affair was an ovation, and Defoe remarked, in the
' Whitehall Evening Post,' that Mr. Bisse did not bear
himself too modestly.

Similar scenes took place when another Jacobite,
Harrison, stood in the pillory, at Whitechapel, for sedi-
tion. He stood at ease, he was protected from all
assault and insult, and, according to the Whig papers,
' Non-resisting ladies supphed him with money or
brandy.' Other offenders, felonious and political, were
summarily got rid of A Mr. Forward, a London mer-
chant, offered to transport all the convicts of England
to the Transatlantic Plantations, at U. a head. The
Government offered him 3Z. for each ; and, at that
price, whole ship-loads of ruffians, but with some honest
fellows among them, were cast into slavery, for inde-
finite periods.

The light penalty of the pillory had no deterring
effect on some ministers. On the 5th of November,
the Eev. Mr. Milborne preached at St. Ethelburg's,
London, and he traced all the present miseries of the
Church to that abominable anniversary, but whether


his conclusion was based on the fact that the gun-
powder plot had failed, or William's invasion of Eng-
land had succeeded, Mr. Milborne did not say.

Although London Jacobitism was not wanting in
malice and menace in this and the preceding year, the
king and roval family maintained a dignified indifier-
ence. George I. Avas the most exposed to peril, but he
met it like a man. He frequently went to the theatre,
not in a bullet-proof carriage densely surrounded by
cavalry, but in a sedan chair, some members of the
Court being conveyed in similar vehicles. Such
vehicles were easily assailed ; an ' ugly rush,' pet phrase
of the modern demagogue, might have overturned the
king, and put him ' out of the story,' as the Sagas say,
in a minute ; but he encountered nothing worse than a
distant word of chaff, which was perhaps not audible,
or, if so, not understood. In this way, he was carried,
in a November night, 1718, to see 'The Orphan,' un-
molested ; and he went in the same conveyance, and in
equal comfort and security, in the same perilous month,
to the ' Little Theatre in Lincoln's Inn Fields', where he
laughed over ' Le Maitre Etourdi,' and fairly ' roared '
at ' Les Fourberies d'Arlequin,' but he understood
those farces better than he did Otway's loftier tragedy.

There remains to be noted a most remarkable
illustration of these Jacobite times, in connection with
the celebrated Daniel Defoe, the Ministry, and the Lon-
don press. Five letters written by Defoe, in the first
half of this year, were discovered in the State Paper
Office, a few years ago. They are inserted, in ' Notes


and Queries, 3rd Series, vol. vi., p. 527-9.' Tiiey are
addressed to some official in the Secretary of State's
Office, for the information of his superiors. From these
stai'tling documents, sad truths are to be gathered.
They make the strange revelation that the author of
the ' True-Born Englishman ' was in the secret service
of the Government under whose resentment he was
supposed to be suffering. He was giving information
of ' traitorous pamphlets ' to Lord Sunderland. By
Lord Chief Justice Parker's recommendation to Lord
Townshend's Ministry, Defoe had been employed on
' a little piece of secret service,' which won for him the
subsequent favour of Lord Stanhope. Under Towns-
hend, Defoe, the once ultra- Whig, appeared in the
disguise of a Tory. He became chief proprietor of the
' News Letter,' a Jacobite paper very hostile to the
Ministry. He took out all its sting, to the satisfaction
of his secret employers, by writing mUd Toryisms in
it himself, and striking out all that was vigorous and
damaging to ministers, in articles sent in by contri-
butors. At a later period Lord Sunderland retained
Defoe in the same questionable employment and re-
warded him in the same manner as Lord Townshend
had done. ' With his Lordship's approbation,' says
Defoe, ' I introduced myself in the disguise of a trans-
lator of the " Foreign News," to be so far concerned in
this paper of Mist's, as to be able to keep it within the
circle of a secret management, also prevent the mis-
chievous part of it, and yet neither Mist nor any of
those concerned with him have the least guess or sus-


picion by whose direction I do it.' In this case, Defoe
was not a proprietor', therefore should matter offensive
to the Government slip in, despite his watchfulness.
Lord Sunderland is begged to consider whether he has
a servant (Defoe) to reprove, or a stranger to punish !
The extent of the dirty work done by Defoe is to be
seen by his remark that the ' News Letter,' the 'Mer-
curius Politicus,' and 'Mist's Journal' shall 'pass as
Tory papers, and yet be disabled and enervated, so as
to do no mischief or give any offence to the Govern-
ment.' Subsequently, poor Defoe writes, 'I am for
this service posted among Papists, Jacobites, and
enraged High Tories, — a generation who, I profess,
my very soul abhors. I am obliged to hear traitorous
expressions and outrageous words against his Majesty's
person and Government, and his most faithful servants,
and smile at it all as if I approved it. • I am obliged
to take all the scandalous and indeed villainous papers
that come, and keep them by me as if I would gather
materials from them, to put them into the news ; nay,
1 often venture to let things pass which are a little
shocking, that I may not render myself suspected.
Thus I bow in the house of Eimmon.'

This is pitiable in the extreme. So is Defoe's
occasional expression of fear lest a paragraph too
Jacobitish in flavour, inserted during his absence,
should be laid to his charge. He almost servilely
entreats to be remembered as the Government's slave
who could not help it, but who is yet worthy of his
reward. Besides, ' it is a hard matter to please the


Tory party, as their present temper operates, without
abusing, not only the Government, but the persons of
our Governors, in every thing they write.' JSTeverthe-
less, as all former ' mistakes ' of his were forgiven by
his former Ministerial Whig employers whom he
served as a Tory, he trusts for a continuation of favour,
which in his Tory disguise he will constantly endeavour
to merit !

Even Jacobite Mist himself came into an ' arrange-
ment ' into which he was frightened by Defoe, as a
cautious and prudent Tory. He was made to see safety
in rallying the Whig writers, and in admitting foolish
and trifling things only in favour of the Tories ! Mr.
Mist resolved that his paper should in future 'amuse
the Tories but not offend the Government ! ' But for
such resolution, Defoe assured him ruin and a prison
would speedily be his inheritance. Correspondents, in
their innocence and ignorance, wrote letters loaded
with treason to the ' Journal.' Mist submitted them
to Defoe, who put them aside as improper ; and then,
without Mist's knowledge, sent them to the Govern-
ment ! As for the ' Journal ' itself, Defoe writes : ' I
believe the time is come, when the " Journal," instead
of affronting and offending the Government, may in
many ways be made serviceable to the Government,
and I have Mr. Mist so absolutely resigned to proper
measures for it, that I am persuaded I may answer
for it.'

Such is a sample of the morality of ' honest Daniel
Defoe,' in matters regarding the London press and

Y 2


home politics in those Jacobite times. The full benefit
of what has been said in his defence he is. however,
entitled too : namely, that he was a Whig, that he
never ceased to be a Whig, and that he sincerely sup-
ported the Whig cause and Whig principles while (in
the pay of a Whig Government) he passed resignedly
for a Papist, a Jacobite, and a High Tory.

There was undoubtedly much active Jacobitism
going on in London, throughout this year, of wliich
the Government knew nothing, or despised ; probably
the latter. They ignored the Cardinal Dubois's Eng-
lish mistress who served him as his Intelligencer, and
they let the fashionable French dancing-master, Du-
buissou, carry about his kit to aristocratic houses with-
out molestation, though he was well known to be an
agent of Cardinal Alberoni, the friend of the Stuarts.
' How it was they did not hang him,' says Dubois, in
his ' Memoires,' ' I never could understand.'

Probably, Dubuisson served the Cabinet at St.
James's better than he did Alberoni, whose ambitious
projects had been checked by the death of his ally
Charles XII. Yet, at the end of the year the Jacobites
in London wore a radiant air. They toasted ' the
Queen ' that was to be, meaning the Princess Sobieska
whom ' James HE. ' was about to marry ; and again
drank ' High Church and Ormond ! ' on learning that
the duke was in Spain, preparing with Alberoni for
an invasion of England and the restoration of the right-
ful king.

Towards the close of the year, the popular admir-


ation was appealed to by the uncovering of the eques-
trian statue of George I., in the Eoyal Exchange.
Neither loyalty, disaffection, or criticism had much to
say to it. Indeed, criticism, such as it was, alone
raised a voice, and then only with a mild sort of utter-
ance : ' It was judged by the most eminent Masters of
that Art to be an excellent and accomplished piece of
Work.' Later in the year, December 15th, when Eo we
died, one might expect to find some Tory sarcasm
agauist that ultra- Whig Poet-Laureate, who furnished
the prologue to ' The Nonjuror,' and for whom Nahum
Tate had been displaced. The only expression in
reference to the bard who reverenced Hanover was
one of indifference for bards generally. ' Last Saturday,'
say all the papers, ' died Nicholas Eowe, Esq., Poet
Laureate to his Majesty, at his house in King Street,
Covent Garden, and is to be interred in Westminster
Abbey, where Cowley, Chaucer, Ben Jonson, and the
rest of those people lie ' ! !


HE year 1719 opened with hopes on the
part of the Jacobites which were doomed
to be disappointed. The Chevaher had
entered into the schemes of the Spanish
Minister, Cardinal Alberoni, for overturning the Eng-
lish settlement. A landing in Scotland and an inva-
sion of England were to be the means for re-establish-
ing the Stuarts. Early in March, groups of Londoners
were to be seen reading the proclamation which offered
a reward of b,000l. for the apprehension of the Duke
cf Ormond, the destined leader of the expedition that
was to invade England. For catching and delivering
attainted peers of less mark, 1,000/. was the sum
offered ; and rebel gentlemen beneath the dignity of a
peer, were valued at 500/. each. The fleet destined
to carry out the object of the invaders was so disabled
by tempests, that after strugghng from Cadiz to Cape
Einisterre, most of the vessels returned to the former
port, and no one in England enjoyed his anticipated
chance of getting 5,000/. by capturing Ormond, ' Cap-


tain-General of the King of Spain ; ' or smaller prize
for less important men. The Marquis of Tulhbardine
(the Jacobite son of the Whig Duke of Athol who
came to London) and the Earls Marischaland Seaforth,
did, however, land in Scotland in April, with about
400 followers, chiefly Spaniards. They were joined
by 1,000 Highlanders. On the 10th of June, the
Chevalier's birthday, the three leaders above named
were defeated by General Wightman, at Glenashiels,
but they contrived to escape. The Highlanders dis-
persed ; the Spaniards surrendered ;,and therewith the
first half of the year ended pleasantly for King George
and his friends.

London lit her bonfires and otherwise illuminated.
From Thomas's press behind the Eoyal Exchange was
issued a satirical ' Hymn to the Victory in Scotland,'
lines from which long hung on the popular tongue.
The Scots and Spaniards were described in doggerel as
being thoroughly beaten, yet escaping, ' Lost in a fog
in sunshine weather.' The battle lasted from five a.m.
till night, but when the field was won, there were
neither wounded nor slain upon it. ' Dead and Living
fied together, without the loss of man or gun ! '

Such mercy in this fight was shown,
We sav'd men's lives and lost our own.

After further doggerel and the usual infusion of coarse-
ness, the Grub Street bard concludes by singing : —

Three hours beaten and none die,
Yet no man knows the reason why,
'Tis very strange 'tween you and I !


London, generally, had contemplated this new
rebellion with indifference. The Government was by-
turns lenient and severe. It was thought expedient,
one day, to pardon mutinous dragoons ; on another, to
be savagely cruel to a soldier who had, in his cups,
sworn, sung, or said, hasty words in favour of King
James. Under the windows of King George's palace
men were thus punished. In Hyde Park, a soldier
named Devenish, was tied nearly naked to a tree, and
flogged by fourteen companies of his own regiment of
foot-guards. This torture he underwent four times, and
then he was flung into a hospital to die. A more
guilty offender. Captain Lennard, who had enhsted
men for the Chevalier's service, for which he might
have been hanged, was allowed to transport himself
out of the kingdom, on the promise never to return ;
and a too zealous Jacobite gentleman, who expressed
to the soldiers at the Tower his astonishment at their
serving an usurper, seems to have got off with a mere
nominal penalty. On the other hand, printers, pub-
lishers, and vendors of papers that exaggerated the
numbers of the rebels in Scotland, were sternly dealt

The Jacobites failed to keep their temper, even
before their hopes were disappointed. In their eyes
it was almost sacrilege for the Prince of Wales to
occupy, even by purchase, the Duke of Ormond's for-
feited White House at Eichmond. When the duke's
confiscated town house in St. James's Square was for
sale, they went to it like pilgrims to a shrine, and saw


it pass away, for 7,500/., to an Irish gentleman, named
Hackett, with nnconcealed regret. 'The Duke of
Ormond is in good health,' said the Jacobite papers
vauntingly. The ' Post ' scorned the idea that the
duke had died at sea of fear or fever, as was reported
by Whig writers of known veracity. The Jacobite
press exasperated the Jacobites themselves into dan-
gerous speech, and, in one instance, to dastardly
action. On an afternoon in April, the Princess of
Wales was being conveyed in her chair from Leicester
Fields to St. James's. She was unprotected. A chair-
man of one of the foreign ambassadors, named Moor,
took advantage of the o{)portunity, and, like the beast
that he was, he spat three times in the lady's face
before he could be seized. At his trial the rulEan
tried to justify the act for which he ultimately suffered.
Through a dense mass of people. Moor was whipt from
Somerset House to the Haymarket. The mob encour-

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Online LibraryDr. (John) DoranLondon in the Jacobite times → online text (page 21 of 28)