VEry many are the Instances of this sort of Crime; yet sad it is to observe that nothing can deter, those who exercise themselves in this sort of Wickedness.
Yet, if rightly considered, it is one of the most abominable Practices. For it is not only a great dishonour to His Most Sacred Majesty and a perverse Abuse of his Mercy and Clemency, bestowed on some Offenders of this kind; but likewise the Community may suffer much prejudice by it, although the greatest Mischief Redounds to the persons themselves, who Diminish the full Weight of His Majesties Coin: This Crime exposing them to an Ignominous Death, through a covetous desire, to satisfie their Excess in a sinful Course of Life, whereupon, that Saying of Solomon is visited, That Gain gotten by Deceit, is a Vanity tossed too and fro, by them who seek Death: And that the Treasures of Wickedness profit nothings, though they bring not the fears of the Unjust presently upon them.
Thus hath it happened to this person, of whom we give you this Relation.
Alice Millikin, Condemned the last Sessions for High-Treason, she Confessed the Fact; she was about Forty Years of Age, she was Born in Herefordshire, and was brought up to make Gloves : She also Married a Glover in that Country; where they lived some time, but afterwards (as she told the Ordinary) her Husband growing very froward to her, and wholly neglectful of his Trade, she was forced to work hard, to get a Livelihood for self and her Children, of which, one Son is left, viz. David Millikin, who also was Condemned the last Sessions for the same Fact, but hath since received his Majesties most Gracious Reprieve: He was Bred up to the Trade of a Glover .
She said, That she often prayed to God to change her husbands heart, and to Reform his wicked Life: But good Counsel made him more Obstinate and Averse from his Duty to God and Man.
After a considerable waiting for his Amendment (but in vain) She left dwelling with him, and came to London, where she was frequently hired to Wash and Scoure , and sometimes to be a Nurse-keeping ; But Poverty grew upon her, and with it a Covetous mind, so falling into Bad Acquaintance, she lost her former Employment, and living idly, she met with one Mrs. Chaston, who used the wicked Art of Clipping, and is not yet Apprehended. She said she knew no more of the Gang; but the said Mrs. Chaston, inticed her to assist her in Clipping: At last she set up the Practice of it her self which she now Laments too late, but Begs God's and the King's Pardon of it.
She was much troubled, that she had been very neglective of God’s Law and breaking the Sabbath, and that she hath not at any time adheared to the motions of God's Spirit, nor improved the Opportunities she had tending toward Salvation.
That she is now truly sorry, that she hath mispent so much precious time and delay’d her Repentance, and that were it to be Redeemed, she would give all the World, were it in her Power.
On Sunday, the Ordinary observing how false, slight, and fickle, Criminals Vows are, of Repentance and Reformation, after they are spared, Preached upon the Sixth Chapter of Hosea and the Fourth Verse. O Ephraim, what shall I do to thee? O Judah, what shall I do with thee, for your Goodness is as the Morning Cloud and as the Early Dew, it puffs away
In Prosecution of which Text, he laid down many Remarks, whereby we may suspect Vows and Resolutions of Reformation, not to be sincere, and how it comes to pass, that they are so often broken, with Directions so to make them as to fix them, that they may become truly practicable. I mention this, because Alice Millikin the Clipper, was very much affected with that Discourse, and that Prayer made in her behalf. Indeed she appeared very penitent at any time when she was prayed withal: And since the few days respite she hath had, more than she expected; the Ordinary askt her, if that Favour did not make her secure as if she should not Dye.
She answered, No; She bless'd God, she had improved the Time, having been extraordinary earnest in Prayer, and doth extremely desire to Repent thorowly of all her Sins secret and known. The Ordinary was early with her on Wednesday, the day of her Execution, and exhorted her not to deceive her self with false hopes of a Blessed eternity.
He instructed her more fully in the Nature of True Faith and Repentance, and inquired, many things relating to her Soul, which were too long here to give an Account of.
She said, after I had prayed a considerable time with her; that she was much troubled about the manner of her Death; yet said, that she hoped the Lord would rowl away the Reproach of it, because she truely desired to be reconciled to him; And though she had not that Assurance of God's love, which she longed after, yet she bless'd the, Lord she had inward support of mind by cleaving to Christ in her Death. She hoped he had made satisfaction to Gods offended Justice for all her provocations of Him. She confess'd they had been many and great, and desired to Mourn that she could grieve no more for every sin, which she endeavoured to call to mind, and be rightly penitent for.
The Ordinary staid with her till the Sheriffs Officers came to demand her. Then about Ten of the Clock she went on foot, guarded to the place of Execution in Smithfield. I went along with her thither: She exhorted the People to take Warning by her, not to offend in the same, or any other way against the known Laws: she pray'd for her self, and the Ordinary after that pray'd for her, and endeavour'd to comfort her, for she seemed very penitent. Afterward she went to the Pedstall, and was fastned by a Rope to the
Stake, with an Iron Hoop about her middle, that she might sink through into the pile of Fire, after she was stifled.
She warned all to beware of a Covetous heart, and in poverty not to distrust God's Providence, but to fear and serve Him, and then the like fatal end will not attend them.
After this I took my Farewell of her, and left her to be executed according to Law.
This my be Printed, R.P. June the 2d. 1686.
LONDON, Printed by E.Mallet, next Door to Mr.Shipton's Coffee-house at Fleet-Bridge. 1686.