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shift for themselves elsewhere; and without this assignation, they must starve here, as many did daily die of famine."
“ In this deplorable condition, and under this consternation, they found themselves obliged to accept, or submit to, the hardest conditions of their conquerors; and so figned such conveyances and releases as were prepared for them, that they might enjoy those lands which belonged to other men. And by this means, the plantation of Connaught, as they called it, was finished, and all the Irish nation was encíosed with in that circuit;' the rest of Ireland being left to the English. Some few estates were left to the old lords and just proprietors, who being all protestants (for no Roman Catholics were admitted) had either never offended them, or had served them, or had made composition for their delinquencies, by the benefit of fome
3 Clarend. Life, vol. ii. p. 117
• Father Walsh, who was thoroughly acquainted with the affairs of these transplanted gentlemen, afferts, “ that he knew some of those who had not ten pounds lands per annum ássigned them in Connaught, whose proper estates at home, in their own countries, whence they had been removed, were worth a thousand a year." Reply to a Person of Quality, p. 147 “ Others were transplanted that got nothing at all.” Id. ib. p. 148.
This transplantation, grievous and shocking as it appears in this authentic description of it, has been represented by a late hiftorián, rather as a piece of necessary and ufeful policy, at that time, than as an act of severity and injustice to the Irish. “ Connaught, says that writer) was reserved entirely for the Irish, under the qualifications determined by parliament. Here they were to confine themselves, and to enjoy their several proportions of land'; that so the new English planters might proceed without interruption, and without that danger of degenerating, which former ages had experienced from an intercourse with the Irifh; and the natives, divided by the Shannon from the other provinces, and surrounded by English garrisons, might be restrained from their old barbarous incurfions.” Lel. Hift. of ' Ir. vol. iii. p. 396.
High courts of justice in Ireland. ABOUT this time, a new tribunal, under the title of an high court of justice, was erected, by the usurpers, in different parts of both kingdoms, for the trial of rebels and malignants, that is to say, of those who were still found faithful to the king. That which sat at Dublin, in 1652, was besides authorised,' “ to hear
i Borl. Irish Rebel.
“ These gentlemen (says an intelligent, contemporary, and impartial writer) were thus transplanted, without cattle to stock that land, without feed to sow, or plough to manure it; without fervants, without shelter, without house or cabbin to dwell in, or defend them from the wolves, or from robbers, or from heat or cold, or other injuries of the air. And the miserable Irish fo transplanted, must not even in those small tracts allotted for them, within the narrow precincts of some parks in three or four counties of Connaught, and Thomond, pitch in any place, or fix their dwelling houses, or take any lands within two miles of the Shannon, four of the sea, and four of Galway, the only city within their precinct: they must not enter this town, or any other corporate or garrisoned place, without particular orders, at their peril, even of being taken by the throat.” Walsh's Reply to a Person of Quality, p. 145.
a In Ireland, the first high court of justice sat at Kilkenny, where the confederates had usually held their general assembly and supreme council; they were attended, and fat in very great state, with twenty-four halberdiers in good apparel for their guard, and all other officers suitable. The president of this court was one justice Donellan, an Irish native, picked out (fays my author) for the greater terror of the delinquents; to whom, as assistants, were joined justice Cook, the infamous solicitor against the late king, and commissary-general Reynolds. These judges would have most wickedly, and by all abominable artifices, of soothing and threatening, tempted their prisoners to accuse the late king as a principal in the Irish insurrection, “ but found not, by all their fcelerate practices, what they fought for.” Brief Chronicle of the Civil Wars, &c. p. 616.
and determine, all massacres and murders, done or committed since the first day of October 1641 ; that is to fay, the actors, contrivers, promoters, abettors, aiders, and assisters of any of the said massacres or murders, or killing after quarter given.” From the iniquitous and bloody sentences frequently pronounced in these courts, they were commonly called Cromwell's slaughter-houses ; " " for no articles were pleadable in them: and against a charge of things said to be done twelve years before, little or no defence could be made ; and the cry that was made of blood, aggravated with expressions of so much horror, and the no less daunting aspect of the court, quite confounded the amazed prisoners, so that they came like sheep to the slaughter."
And indeed, what else could be expected at a time when all distinctions of right and wrong were confounded, and lost in those of power and impo. tence; “ when the noblest acts of loyalty (says the Marquis of Ormond himself) received the judgment due to the foulest treason, due to the unrighteous judges that pronounced it, without authority in the persons, or justice in the sentence; when the benches were crowded and oppressed, with the throng and wicked weight of those that ought rather to have stood manacled at the bar; when such was the bold contempt, not only of the essentials
, but also of the very formalities of justice, that they gave no reason for taking away men's estates, but that they were Irish papists; when all men were liable to the entanglements of two-edged oaths, from the conflicts raised by them in men's breasts, between conscience and conveniency ; between the prostitution of their consciences, and the ruin of their fortunes ; than which an harder and more tyrannical choice could not be obtruded on christians. For here the election was not, fwear thus against your conscience, or you shall have no part in the civil government, no office in the
2 Hift. of Independency.
army, or benefice in the church; but swear thus, or you shall have no house to put your head in, no bread to sustain yourselves, your wives, and your children.”
In the same year (1652) the parliament commissioners at Dublin, published a proclamation, signed Charles Fleetwood, Edmund Ludlow, and John Jones ; printed by William Bladen; wherein the act of the 27th of Elizabeth was made of force in Ireland, and ordered to be most strictly put in execution. By this act, “ every Romish priest, so found, was deemed guilty of rebellion, and sentenced to be hanged until he was half dead ; then to have his head taken off, and his body cut in quarters; his bowels to be drawn out and burnt; and his head fixed upon a pole in some public place.' The punishment of those who entertained a priest, was, by the same act, confiscation of their goods and chattels, and the ignominious death of the gallows. This edict was renewed the same year, with the additional cruelty of making even the private exercise of the Roman catholic religion, a capital crime. And again repeated in 1657, with the same penalty, of confiscation and death to all those who knowing where a priest was hid, did not make discovery to the government. Of the strict execution of these barbarous edicts, many shocking examples were daily seen among these unhappy people, insomuch, that to use the words of a contemporary writer and eye witness,“ neither the Israelites were more cruelly persecuted by Pharaoh, nor the innocent infants by Herod, nor the Christians by Nero, or any of the other pagan tyrants, than were the Roman catholics of Ireland, at that fatal juncture, by these savage commissioners." +
The same price (five pounds sterling) was set by these commiffioners on the head of a Romish priest, and on that of a wolf; the number of which latter
4 Morriffon. Thren. p. 14.
o Is not this the case, at this day, of the Irish catholics, with respect to the operations of the present popery-laws ?
was then very considerable in Ireland ; and although the profession or character of a Romiíh priest could not, one would think, be so clearly ascertained, as the species of a wolf, by the meer inspection of their heads thus severed from their bodies, yet he bare afseveration of the beheaders was, in both cases, equally credited and rewarded by these commissioners. So inveterate was their malice and hatred to that order of men!
Many instances might be produced of the barbarous iniquity of the courts of justice ;' but I shall mention only one, which was exhibited at the trial of Sir Phelim O'Nial, in February 1652, when an infamous attempt was made by his judges to blacken the memory of their deceased king, with the same mock-appearance of justice, though not with the same success with which their masters in England had lately murdered his royal person.
Sir Phelim O'Nial, one of the principal leaders in the insurrection of 1641, conscious that nothing would more effectually induce the Irish to join in his designs, than their belief that they were approved of and authorised by the king, counterfeited his majesty's commission for that purpose ; and having surprised the castle of Charlemount, he there found an old patent, the feal of which he ordered to be torn off, and affixed to that commission. The Irish insurgents believed the authority real, and, therefore, entered heartily into his measures. The English rebels, for a while, either believed, or pretended to believe, the fame; and from thence had taken occasion to heap infinite reproaches on the king, who thereby lost the affections of many of his otherwise well-disposed sub
• Such was the indiscriminate and glaring injustice of these courts, that, although in different parts of Ireland, they contrived to condemn about two hundred persons, as guilty of murder, on forged, corrupt, or no evidence; northern province, which had been the great scene of barbarity, not one was brought to justice but Sir Phelim O'Nial.” Lel. Hist. vol. ii. p. 394.
yet in the