Category Archives: 1680’s

Item of the Day: A Copy of the Deposition of Francis Branson (1680)

A copy of the Deposition of Francis Branson.

Found In: Letters from the English Kings and Queens Charles II, James II, William and Mary, Anne, George II, &c. To the governors of the Colony of Connecticut, together with the Answers  thereto, from 1635 to 1749; and Other Original, Ancient, Literary and Curious Documents, Compiled from Files and Records in the Office of the Secretary of the State of Connecticut. By R. R. Hinman, A. M. Secretary of the State of Connecticut. Hartford: John D. Eldredge, Printer, 1836. [pp. 119-120]

 

Francis Branson, commander of the ship Anne and Hester, aged 30 years or thereabouts, in the behalf of his Majestie testifieth, that William Kelso, Chirurgeon, and John Bowland, mate of the said ship, being aboard, in the great cabbin at sea, the 16th day of April last, 1680, amongst other discourses that then passed between them, the said William Kelso in hearing of this Deponent, did declare in the great cabbin, that he was the Chirurgeon Generall, in the late rebellion in Scottland, and that after the Duke of Monmouth had been there and qualified them, Kelso cutt of his hair and wore a Perriwigg, and made his escape into the north of Ireland, and from thence transported himself to Dublin, and was there some small time, and from thence he made his excape to Bristol, and there he stayed a while, and after went up to London. He then at the same time did declare, that he knew those persons that murdered the Arch Bishop of St. Andrews, and that they had made their escape disguised, and could not be found; that there were sixe of them that sett upon him, when he was in his coach, going over a plain 3 miles from a village, that they hauled him out of his coach and told him that he had betrayed them, and therefore nothing should satisfie them but his blood. His Daughter being in the coach with him, opened her bosome, and desired them to spare her father and kill her, but they fell upon him with pistols, first pistolling him, and then hewed him in pieces with their swores ; all which words were spoken by the said Kelso, when we wee coming from England, being then bound for the Isle of May.

Sworn to in Court, the 4th January, 1680, in Boston, New England. That this is a true coppie taken and compared with the original, 4th January 1680.

Attest,

EDWARD RAWSON, Secr’y.

Advertisements

Leave a comment

Filed under 1680's, Crime and punishment, England, Great Britain, Ireland, Legal, New England, Posted by Caroline Fuchs, Trials

Item of the Day: Hobbes’s Tripos (1684), continued.

Full Title:

Hobbs’s Tripos, In Three Discourses: The first, Humane Nature, Or the Fundamental Elements of Policy. Being a Discovery of the Faculties, Acts and Passions of the Soul of Man, from their Original Causes, according to such Philosophical Principles as are not commonly known, or asserted. The second, De Corpore Politico, Or the Elements of Law, Moral and Politick, with Discourses upon several Heads, as of the Law of Nature, Oaths and Covenants; several kinds of Governments, with the Changes and revolution of them. The third, Of Liberty and Necessity; Wherein all Controversie, concerning Predestination, Election, Free-will, Grace, Merits, Reprobation, is fully decided and cleared. The Third Edition.

Written by Thomas Hobbes. Printed in London for Matt. Gilliflower, Henry Rogers, Booksellers in Westminster Hall, and Tho. Fox next the Fleece Tavern in Fleetstreet, and at the Angel in Westminster-Hall, 1684.

Chap. VI.

[Continued from post on Thurday, Feb 7.]

5. A Proposition is said to be supposed, when, being not evident, it is nevertheless admitted for a Time, to the End, that, joyning to it other Propositions, we may conclude something; and to proceed from Conclusion to Conclusion, for a Trial whether the same will lead us into any absurd or impossible Conclusion; which if it do, then we know such Supposition to have been false.  

6. But if, running thorow [sic] many Conclusions, we come to none that are absurd, then we think the Proposition probable: likewise we think probable whatever Proposition we admit for Truth by Errour or Reasoning, or from trusting to other Men: And all such Propositions as are sdmitted by Trust of error, we are not said to know, but think them to be true; and the Admittance of them is called Opinion

7. And particularly, when the Opinion is admitted out of Trust to other Man, they are said to believe it; and their Admittance of it is called Belief, and sometimes Faith

8. It is either Science or Opinion which we commonly mean by the Word Conscience: for Men say that such and such a thing is true in or upon their Conscience; which they never do, when they think it doubtful; and therefore they know, or think they know it to be ture.  But Men, when they say things uopn their Concience , are not therefore presumed certainly to know the Truth of what they say: It remaineth then, that the Word is used by them that have an Opinion, not only of the Truth of the Thing, but also of their Knowledge of it, to which the Truth of the Proposition is consequent.  Conscience I therefore define to be Opinion of Evidence.

9. Belief, which is the admitting of Propositions upon Trust, in many Cases is not less free from Doubt, than perfect and manifest Knowledge : for as there is nothing whereof there is not some Cause; so, when there is Doubt, there must be some Cause thereof conceived.  Now there be many Things which we receive from Report of others, of which it is impossible to imagine any Cause of Doubt: for what can be opposed against the Consent of all Men, in Things they can know, and have no Cause to report otherwise then they are, (such as is great Part of our Histories) unless a Man would say that all the World had conspired to deceive him.  And thus much of Sense, Imagination, Discursion, Ratiocination, and Knowledge, which are the Acts of our Power cognitive, or conceptive.  That Power of the Mind which we call motive, differeth from the Power motive of the Body: for the Power motive of the Body is that by which it moveth other Bodies and we call Strength; but the Power motive of the Mind, is that by which the Mind giveth animal Moion to that Body wherein it existeth: the Acts hereof are our Affections and Passions, of which I am to speak in general. 

Leave a comment

Filed under 1680's, Eighteenth century, Philosophy, Posted by Matthew Williams

Item of the Day: Hobbes Tripos (1684), part 1

Full Title:

Hobbs’s Tripos, In Three Discourses: The first, Humane Nature, Or the Fundamental Elements of Policy. Being a Discovery of the Faculties, Acts and Passions of the Soul of Man, from their Original Causes, according to such Philosophical Principles as are not commonly known, or asserted. The second, De Corpore Politico, Or the Elements of Law, Moral and Politick, with Discourses upon several Heads, as of the Law of Nature, Oaths and Covenants; several kinds of Governments, with the Changes and revolution of them. The third, Of Liberty and Necessity; Wherein all Controversie, concerning Predestination, Election, Free-will, Grace, Merits, Reprobation, is fully decided and cleared. The Third Edition.

Written by Thomas Hobbes. Printed in London for Matt. Gilliflower, Henry Rogers, Booksellers in Westminster Hall, and Tho. Fox next the Fleece Tavern in Fleetstreet, and at the Angel in Westminster-Hall, 1684.

Chap. VI.

1. Of the Two kinds of Knowledge

2. Truth and Evidence Necessary to Knowledge

3. Evidence Defined

4. Science Defined.

5. Supposition defined.

6. Opinion defined.

7. Belief Defined.

8. Conscience defined.

9. Belief, in some Cases, no less from Doubt than Knowledge.

1. There is a Story somewhere, of one that pretends to have been miraculously cured of Blindness (wherewith he was born) by St. Albane or other Saints, at the Town of St. Albans; and that the Duke of Glocester being there, to be satisfied of the Truth of the Miracle, asking the Man, What Colour is this?  Who, by answering, It was Green, discovered himself, and was punished for a Counterfeit: for though by his sight newly received he might distinguish between Green, and Red, and all other Colours, as well as any that should interrogate him, yet he could not possible know at first Sight which of them was called Green, or Red, or by any other Name.  By this we may understand, there be two Kinds of Knowledge, whereof the one is nothing else but Sense, or Knowledge original, as I have said in the Beginning of the second Chapter, and Remembrance of the same; the other is called Science or Knowledge of the Truth of Propositions, and how Things are called; and it derived from Understanding.  Both of these Sorts are but Experience; the former being the Experience of the Effects of Things that work upon us from without; and the latter Experience Men have from the proper Use of Namesin Language: and all Experience being, as I have said, but Remembrance, all Knowledge is Remembrance: and of the former, the Register we keep in Books, is called History; But the Registers of the latter are called the Sciences.

2. There are two Things necessarily implied in this Word Knowledge; the one is Truth, the other Evidence: for what is not Truth can never be known.  For, let a Man say he knoweth a Thing so well, if the same shall afterwards appear false, he is driven to Confession, that it was not Knowledge, but Opinion.  Likewise, if the Truth be not evident, though a man holdeth it, yet is his Knowledge thereof no more than theirs who hold the contrary: for it Truth were enough to make it Knowledge, all Truth were known; which is not so.

3. What Truth is, hath been defined in the precedent Chapter; what Evidence is, I nowset down: and it is the Concomitance of a Mans Conception with the Wordsthat signifie such Conception in the Act of Ratiocination; for when a Man reasoneth with his Lips only, to which the Mind suggesteth only the Beginning, and followeth not the Words of his Mouth with the Conceptions of his Mind, out of Custom of so speaking; though he begin his Ratiocination with true Propositions, and proceed with certain Syllogisms, and thereby make always true Conclusions; yet are not his Conclusions evidence to him, for want of Concomitance of Conceptionwith his Words: for if the Words alone were sufficient, a Parrot might be taught as well to know Truth as to speak it.  Evidence is to Truth, as the Sap to the Tree, which so far as it creepeth along with Body and Branches, keepeth them alive; where it forsaketh them, they die: for this Evidence, which is Meaning with our Words, is the Life of Truth.

4. Knowledge therefore which we call Science, I define to be Evidence of Truth, from some Beginning of Principle of Sense: for the Truth of a Proposition is never evident, until we conceive the Meaning of the Words or Terms whereof it consisteth, which are always Conceptions, without the Thing that produced the same by our Senses.  The first Principle of Knowledge is, that we have such and such Conceptions; the second, that we have thus and thus named the Things whereof they are Conceptions; the third is, that we have joyned those Names in such Manner as to make true Propositions; the fourth and last is, that we have joyned those Propositions in such Manner as they be concluding, and the Truth of the Conclusion said to be known.  And of these two Kinds of Knowledge, whereof the former is Experience of Fact, and the later [sic] of Evidence of Truth; as the former, if it be great, is called Prudence, so the latter, if it be much, hath usually been called, both by Ancient and Modern writers, Sapience or Wisdom: and of this latter, Man only is capable; of the former, brute Beasts also participate.  [To be continued in next Friday’s post] 

Leave a comment

Filed under 1680's, Philosophy, Posted by Matthew Williams

Item of the Day: Hume’s History of England (1757)

Full Title:  The History of Great Britain.  Vol. II. Containing the Commonwealth, and the Reigns of Charles II. and James II. By David Hume, Esq; London: Printed for A. Millar, opposite Catharine-Street, in the Strand.  M.DCC.LVII.

Chap. VI.

17th of November. 1680.

One of the most innocent artifices, practiced by party-men at this time, was the additional ceremony, pomp, and expence, with which a pope-burning was celebrated in London: This spectacle served to entertain, and amuse, and enflame the populace. The duke of Monmouth likewise came over without leave, and made a triumphant procession thro’ many parts of the kingdom, extremely caressed and admired by the people.  All these arts seemed requisite to support the general prejudices, during the long interval of Parliament.  Great endeavors were also used to obtain the King [Charles II]’s consent for the meeting of that assembly.  Seventeen peers presented a petition to that purpose.  Many of the corporations imitated this example. Notwithstanding several marks of displeasure, and even a menacing proclamation from the King, petitions came from all parts, earnestly insisting on a session of Parliament.  The danger of popery, the terrors of the plot, were never forgot in any of these addresses.

Tumultuous petitioning was one of the chief artifices, by which the malecontents in the last reign had attacked the Crown: And tho’ the manner of subscribing and delivering petitions was now somewhat limited by act of Parliament, the thing itself still remained; and was an admirable expedient for infecting the Court, for spreading discontent, and for uniting the nation in any popular clamor.  As the King found no law, by which he could punish those importunate, and as he esteemed them, undutiful sollicitations; he was obliged to encounter them by popular applications of a contrary tendency.  Wherever the church and court party prevailed, addresses were framed, containing expressions of the highest regard to his Majesty, the most entire acquiescence in his wisdom, the most dutiful submission to his prerogative, and the deepest abhorrence of those, who endeavored to encroach on it, by prescribing to him any time for assembling the Parliament.  Thus the nation came to be distinguished into Petitioners and Abhorrers.  Factions indeed were at this time extremely animated against each other.  The very names, by which each party denominated its antagonist, discover the virulence and rancor, which prevailed.  For besides Petitioner and Abhorrer, appellations which were soon forgot; this year is remarkable for being the epoch of the well-known epithets of WHIG and TORY, by which, and sometimes without any very material difference, this island has been so long divided.  The court party reproached their antagonists with their affinity to the fanatical conventiclers of Scotland, who were known by the name of Whigs: The country party found a resemblance between the courtiers and the popish banditti in Ireland, to whom the appellation of Tory was affixed.  And after this manner, these foolish terms of reproach came into public and general use; and even at present seem not nearer their end than when they were first invented. 

Leave a comment

Filed under 1680's, 1750's, History, Politics, Posted by Matthew Williams

Item of the Day: The Works of Richard Hooker (1682)

Full Title: The Works Of that Learned and Judicious Divine, Mr. Richard Hooker, in Eight Books of Ecclesiastical Polity, Compleated out of his own Manuscripts. With several other Treatises by the same Author, and an Account of his Life and Death. Dedicated to the King’s most Excellent Majesty, Charles II. By whose Royal Father (near His Martydom) the former Five Books (then only extant) were commended to His Dear Children, as an excellent means to satisfie Private Scruples, and settle the Publick Peace of this Church and Kingdom. London: Printed for Robert Scot, Thomas Basset, John Wright and Richard Chiswel, M.DC.LXXXII.

 A

PPREFACE

To them that seek (as they term it)

The Reformation of the Laws and

Orders Ecclesiastical,

in the

Church of England.

Though for no other cause, yet for this, That Posterity may know we have not loosly through silence, permitted things to pass away as in a Dream, There shall be for Mens infomration extant thus much concerning the present state of the Church of God, established amongst us, and their careful endeavour which would have upheld the same. At your hands, beloved in our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ, (for in him the love which we bear unto all that would but seem to be born of him, it is not the Sea of your Gall and bitterness that shall ever drown) I have no great cause to look for other, than the self-same portion and lot, which your manner hath been hitherto to lay on them that concur not in Opinion and Sentence with you. But our hope is that the God of Peace shall (notwithstanding mans nature, too impatient of contumelious malediction) enable us quietly, and even gladly to suffer all things for that work sake, which we covet to perform. The wonderful zeal and fervour wherewith ye have withstood the received Orders of this Church, was the first thing which caused me to enter into consideration, Whether (as all your published Books and Writings peremptorily maintain) every Christian man fearing God, stand bound to joyn with you for the furtherance of that which ye term The Lords Discipline. Wherein I must plainly confess unto you, that before I examined your sundry Declarations in that behalf, it could not settle in my head to think, but that undoubtedly such numbers of otherwise right well-affected and most religiously enclined minds, had some marvellous reasonable enducements which led them with so great earnestness that way. But when once, as near as my slender ability would serve, I had with travel and care performed that part of the Apostles advice and counsel in such cases, whereby he willeth to try all things, and was come at the length so far, that there remained only the other clause to be satisfied, wherein he concludeth, that what good is, must be held: There was in my poor understanding no remedy, but to set down this as my final resolute persuasion. Surely, the present Form of Church Government, which the Laws of the Land have established, is such, as no Law of God, nor Reason of Man hath hitherto been alledged of force, sufficient to prove they do ill, who to the uttermost of their power, withstand the alteration therof. Contrariwise, The other, which instead of it, we are required to accept, is only the Error and misconceipt, named the Ordinance of Jesus Christ, no one Proof as yet brought forth, whereby it may clearly appear to be so in very deed. The Explication of which two things, I have here thought good to offer into your hands; Heartily beseeching you, even by the Meekness of Jesus Christ, whom I trust ye love, That, as ye tender the Peace and Quietness of this Church, if there be in you that gracious Humility which hath ever been the Crown of Glory of a Christianly disposed mind: If your own souls, hearts, and consciences, (the sound integrity wherof can but hardly stand with the refusal of Truth in personal respects) be, as I doubt not but they are, things most dear and precious unto you: Let not the Faith which ye have in our Lord Jesus Christ, be blemished with partialities, regard not who it is which speaketh, but weigh only what is spoken. Think not that ye read the words of one who bendeth himself as an Adversary against the Truth, which ye have already embraced, but the words of one, who desireth even to embrace together with you the self-same Truth, if it be the Truth; and for that cause (for no other, God be knoweth) hath undertaken the burthensome labour of this painful kind of Conference. For the plainer access whereunto, let it be lawful for me to rip up the very bottom, how, and by whom your Discipline was planted, at such time as this age we live in, began to make first trial thereof. . . .

 

 

Leave a comment

Filed under 1680's, Church of England, Posted by Caroline Fuchs, Religion

Item of the Day: Hobbes’s Tripos (1684)

Full Title:

Hobbs’s Tripos, In Three Discourses: The first, Humane Nature, Or the Fundamental Elements of Policy. Being a Discovery of the Faculties, Acts and Passions of the Soul of Man, from their Original Causes, according to such Philosophical Principles as are not commonly known, or asserted. The second, De Corpore Politico, Or the Elements of Law, Moral and Politick, with Discourses upon several Heads, as of the Law of Nature, Oaths and Covenants; several kinds of Governments, with the Changes and revolution of them. The third, Of Liberty and Necessity; Wherein all Controversie, concerning Predestination, Election, Free-will, Grace, Merits, Reprobation, is fully decided and cleared. The Third Edition.

Written by Thomas Hobbes. Printed in London for Matt. Gilliflower, Henry Rogers, Booksellers in Westminster Hall, and Tho. Fox next the Fleece Tavern in Fleetstreet, and at the Angel in Westminster-Hall, 1684.

Chapter One of “Humane Nature: or the Fundamental Elements of Policy”:

The true and perspicuous Explication of the Elements of Laws Natural and Politick (which is my present Scope) dependeth upon the Knowledge of what is Humane Nature, what is Body Politick, and what it is we call a Law; concerning which Points, as the Writings of Men from Antiquity down wards have still increased, so also have the Doubts, and concerning the same: And seeing that true Knowledge begetteth not Doubt nor Controversie, but Knowledge, it is manifest from the present Controversies, That they which have heretofore written thereof, have not well understood their own Subject.

2. Harm I can do none, though I err no less than they; for I shall leave Men but as they are, in Doubt and Dispute: but, intending not to take any Principle upon Trust, but only to put Men in Mind of what they know already, or may know by their own Experience, I hope to erre the less; and when I do, it must proceed from too hasty Concluding, which I will endeavour as much as I can to avoid.

3. On the other side, if Reasoning aright win not Consent, which may very easily happen, from them that being confident of their own Knowledg weigh not what is said, the Fault is not mine but theirs; for as it is my Part to shew my Reasons, so it is theirs to bring Attention.

4. Mans Nature is the Summ of his natural Faculties and Powers, and the Faculties of Nutrition, Motion, Generation, Sense, Reason, &c. These Powers we do unanimously call Natural, and are contained in the Definition of Man, under these words Animal and Rational.

5. According to the two principal Parts of Man, I divide his Faculties into two forts, Faculties of the Body, and Faculties of the Mind.

6. Since the minute and distinct Anatomy of the Powers of the Body is nothing necessary to the present Purpose, I will only summ them up in these Three Heads, Power Nutritive, Power Motive, and Power Generative.

7. Of the Powers of the Mind there be two Sorts, Cognitive, Imaginative, or Conceptive and Motive; the first of Cognitive.

For the understanding of what I mean by the Power Cognitive, we must remember and acknowledge that there be in our Minds continually certain Images or Conceptions of the Things wihtout us, insomuch that if a Man could be alive, and all the rest of the World annihilated, he should nevertheless retain the Image thereof; and all those Things which he had before seen or perceived in it; every one by his own Experience knowing, that the Absense or Destruction of things once imagined doth not cause the Absence or Destruction of the Imagination it self; This Imagery and Representation of our Conception, Imagination, Ideas, Notice, or Knowledg of them; and the Faculty or Power by which we are capable of such Knowledge, is that I here call Cognitive Power, or Conceptive, the Power of Knowing or Conceiving.

Leave a comment

Filed under 1680's, Philosophy, Posted by Carrie Shanafelt