A True Account of the Behaviour, Confessions, and last Dying Speeches of the Condemn'd Criminals, that were Executed at Tyburn on Wednesday the 2d. of August, 1699.
On the Lord's-day, after the Condemnation of the Condemn'd Criminals, a Sermon was Preach'd on this Text,
Mat. 1. 21. For he shall save his People from their sins.
Part of the Discourse, was thus directed to the Condemn'd Criminals.
HATH Christ done and suffered so great things in order to become the Saviour of the World? How then shall we escape if we neglect so great Salvation? You see that the great end and Business for which he came into the World, was to turn Men from their Sins to the practice of Holiness; for the effecting whereof, he took the most effectual Methods for to engage Men to renounce their Sins; he acquaints them with the absolute necessity of Repentance, (as without which they must unavoidably perish) and for the Encouragement of the greatest Offenders, he shews how ready God is to be reconcil'd to them, provided they betake themselves to a better course of Life. This is the design of the Parable of the prodigal Son, whom upon his Sorrow for his lewd and riotous Life, and Promise of better Obedience for the future, the offended Father embraces with great kindness, and forgives him all his past Extravagancies. And to the same purpose, is another Parable concerning the lost Sheep, for the Recovery whereof the Owner greatly rejoyces: By the former, our blessed Saviour gives us to understand, that God is willing to Pardon the greatest of Sinners, upon their Return to him by true Repentance: And by the latter, that the Conversion of a Sinner is matter of great joy to the Inhabitants of Heaven; I say unto you, that likewise joy shall be in heaven over one sinner that repenteth, more than over ninety and nine just persons, which need no repentance. Than which, Sinners cannot possibly have greater Encouragement to Repentance and Amendment of Life.
Most passionately then I beseech you, for Christ Jesus his sake, for your own immortal Souls sake, be reconcil'd to God by a sincere Repentance. Your Glass is almost run, your Sun is set, and the Night approaches, wherein you cannot Work. Lay hold then by Faith on this Jesus, who offered up himself a Sacrifice to save Sinners: Make him your Jesus, your Saviour, else you will quickly find him a severe and terrible Judge.
The Confession of the Criminals were as follows.
I. George Norton, Esq ; 17 Years old, Condemn'd for the Murder of Mr. Harris; being examin'd gave this Account, which he confirmed with repeated and solemn Asseverations, when he receiv'd the blessed Sacrament, viz. That as he was going to his Lodgings, he accidentally met with the Deceased, whom he never saw before; who held a Woman in his Hand; he taking the Wall of her, she asked Mr. Harris, if he wou'd permit such a Puppy to affront her so: Upon which the Deceased pushed him, which made him demand who he was? Mr. Harris replied, he was a Man; this occasion'd several Words, which at length made them both draw, and as he protested, the Deceased drew first, and made several Passes, ten or twelve, before he receiv'd his fatal Wound. Being demanded how the Deceased's Sword came to be bloody and broke, and his bright and entire? He added farther; That as they were Pushing at one another, the Woman took away his Sword, which made him defend himself for some time with his Cane, but perceiving the Deceased to press hard upon him, he closed with him, and endeavoured with all his Force, to wrest the Sword out of his Hand, which breaking short, with the Point of his own Sword, the Hilt still remaining in his Hand, the Deceased receiv'd his mortal Wound; for which he seem'd very Penitent, earnestly beseeching God, to Wash him throughly from his Iniquity, and cleanse him from his Sin, in that Fountain opened for Sin and for Uncleanness, the precious Bloud of the Immaculate Lamb of God, Slain to take away the Sins of the World. I believe he is a true Penitent.
II. John Bird, 21 Years old, Condemn'd for Robbery on the High-way; being examin'd said, that he was a Waterman by Calling, but being addicted to evil Practices, and giving Reins to his Passions, and no bounds to his Lusts, he followed such a wicked Course of living, as brought him to the same unhappy Circumstances once before, being Condemn'd to Die; the terrors of Death extorted from him several Vows and Resolutions of living better; if his Life were spared; but having experienced his Majesties Clemency, and delivered from the Miseries of a Prison, all his good Purposes proved abortive, and never passed into Act; they were like the Vows of a Marriner in a great Tempest, which vanish away and are forgotten upon the clearing of the Skie, and altering of the Weather: For he presently associated himself to his lewd Acquaintance, and committed this, and six other Robberies in a short space. His Crime as well as Ingratitude was aggravated, and he was put in mind of the reasons he had to suspect the Sincerity of his present seeming Repentance; but indeed he was not so sensible of his State as could be wished.
III. William Fassel, Aged 32 Years convicted for Robbery on the High-way; a Sadler by Trade, but served as a Soldier during the War. Confessed that he was guilty of this Crime, the only one of that nature he ever committed, and Protested that he received but one Shilling for his Share, which his Comrades who are now Convicted for this and several other Robberies, did also affirm. He behaved himself very well, being attentive to good Advice, and seem'd Penitent.
IV. Erasmus Townsend, Born in Nottingham, 36 Years old; Convicted for the High-way: By Calling an Husbandman , but being reduc'd to a very low ebb of Adversity, he was the easier prevail'd upon to listen to bad Advice, and associate himself to evil Companions, with whom he committed five Robberies; he added, that his Wife dissuaded him very much from such evil Practices, and entreated him with Tears to forsake such unlawful ways; which as he said, had this good effect, that he bid adieu to his evil Company, and resolved upon a better course of Life, to be more Pious and Devout towards God, more Sober and Chast with regard to himself, more Just and Charitable towards others. He lamented his unhappy Condition with a flood of Tears, often reflecting on his ill-spent Life, calling his bad Actions to remembrance, and expressing a deep Sorrow for them.
V. William Cousins, Born in Southwark, 16 Years old; Condemned for Robbery on the High-way; He was a Waterman , and lived honestly, but meering with the Evidence, who made him drink excessively, he went along with him to commit this on a Robbery, and had four Shillings as his Share,
VI. John Maginny, 22 Years old, Convicted for Robbery on the High-way; he would not own that he was guilty of this, or any other Fellony or Robbery. He served his Majesty's Army in Flanders, and as he said, always behaved himself very Honestly: He added, that he was a Roman Catholick; and so gave no great Account of his Actions.
VII. William Saunders, Condemn'd for the same: He was a Servant , but falling into bad Company, who Robbed on the High-way, he resolv'd to be one of their Gang; as soon as he came into the Countrey, but was prevented by the Evidence: He denied that he ever was concern'd in any Robbery, and as far the Goods which were found upon him, he said they were given him, to defray his expences on the Road. He wept very much, and seemed Penitent.
VIII. William Bristow, Condemn'd for feloniously Stealing two Geldings, of the value of nine Pound, confest his Crime, but would not own that he was Guilty of any other laid to his Charge: He was a Labourer , and work'd hard for his Living, but growing idle and so reduc'd to want, to extricate himself out of these low and pressing Circumstances, he listened to bad Advice, and committed this Fact, for which he seem'd to be Penitent; desiring all young Persons to remember their Creator in the Days of their Youth, to be industrious and dilligent in their Calling; above all to take heed of trusting to a Death bed Repentance.
IX. William Webb, Convicted for the same. He was a Barge-man , and lived in good Repute, and had Goods of a very considerable Value committed to his Trust, particularly 700 Guineas, and a Silver Fountain, which was Sr. Henry Johnson's, which he honestly carried to his Country-Seat. But being in drink, Bristow, as he said, prevail'd with him, to go along with him to London, and he would let him Ride ou one of his Horses, which was worth but but three Pound; which he did, and was apprehended with the Horse here, which he would not own that he knew was Stolen. He behaved himself like a Christian sensible of his Condition, humbly beseeching God, to touch his Heart with true Remorse, that it might melt and bleed for his Sins, that the sad and miserable Circumstances which he was in, might be turn'd through the Riches of his Grace, into a happy occasion of converting his Soul, and perfecting his Repentance, and promoting his Salvation. He was very attentive to good Advice, and gave good Grounds of belief that he was a true Penitent.
X. John Trawford, 26 Years old, Condemn'd for Burglary in the Day time; was a Smith by Trade, and labour'd hard to maintain his poor Wife and Children, but getting Acquaintance with one Baily, who is Convicted for the same Crime, he went along with him, and staid at some distance from the House, while the other entred it, and brought away a Gold Ring, &c. He added it was the only Fact of that nature he ever was concern'd in, for which he exprest a deep and hearty Sorrow.
On Wednesday the 2 of August, 1699, these following Persons were convey'd from Newgate to Tyburn in Carts. William Fassel, John Bird, Erasmus Townsend, William Cousins, William Saunders, John Miganny, John Trawford, John Baily and William Williams. All of them being tied up, John Bird confest, That he had been guilty of several Robberies on the High way; but that he never barbarously treated any Man. He imputed his first extravagant course of Life to some of his nearest Relations, who would not supply his pressing Necessity, when he resolved to go to Sea, and live honestly; he added, that it was now a very great trouble to him that he made no better returns for Mercy formerly received, by being more obedient to the Laws of God and Man. Erasmus Townsend, acknowledged that he had been an old Offender; that he was guilty of several Robberies on the Highway; but that since the merits of Christ are infinite, he hoped that God would for the sake of them pardon him the greatest of Sinners. His behaviour seem'd devout, he earnestly begged God to grant, that having had all his Shame, Sorrow and evil Things in this Life, he may awake to Joy and Happiness in that which is to come. William Saunders confest that he was guilty of this and two other Robberies, which he would not tell any one; that he was seduc'd by bad Company, who used frequently to propose to him the Advantages of such desperate, wicked and dangerous undertakings, by telling him how bravely they liv'd; and if they were discover'd and condemn'd to be Executed, the punishment would be but short, and that then there was an end of them; which foolish Suggestions, through want of Consideration, had such powerful influence on him, that he willingly associated himself to their Company; for which he seem'd to be grieved, not so much that he could not escape suffering for his evil Deeds, as for offending so good and so gracious a God. John Trawford denied his Crime, protesting that he always labour'd hard to maintain his poor Wife and Children, being a Smith by Trade, and that to the best of his knowledge he never defrauded any Person of the value of Two-pence in his Life; as for the string which tied some Goods, which one said was his string, and belonged to his Apron, he utterly disowned it, and said that one string might be like another. His Behaviour was modest and devout, and he said, he thanked God he always liv'd a good Life. I hope he was a true penitent. William Williams, the Boy, said it was the first Crime of that nature he was ever Guilty of; but that heretofore he used to pick Pockets of Handkercheifs. John Miganny died a Roman-Catholick. The rest of the Criminals said but little; They had time allowed for private Prayer, and then the Cart drew away they were turn'd off. George Norton, Esq ; is Repriv'd till the ninth instant.
This is all the Account I can give of this Sessions.
Dated Aug. 2, 1699.
At the first House on the left Hand, in Darby-Court in Channel-Row in King's-street Westminster,
PErsons may have all sorts of Business depending in the Courts of Law and Equity, High Court of Parliament, Privy Councel, Treasury, Admiralty, Navy-Offices, &c. Speedily and Faithfully Sollicited. We Buy, Sell or Let, Houses, Estates, Ground-Rents, &c. We likewise make an Interest to invest Gentlemen and others, in Places; we have now these Places to dispose of, 6 in the Country, 2 valued at above 500l. a Year, valued at near 200l. a Year, 2 of 70l. a Year. We have also several Places in the City, one of 1000l. a Year, 3 valued at near 200l. a Year, some of 80l. 60l. 50l. 40l. a Year Sallaries. We have several very advantagious Employments, to propose to those who are good Clerks and Accomptants, that we have not room to insert, but for particulars refer to our Bills, which any Person may be furnished with at our Office.
Note, the unsuccessfulness of the late Office of Land-Credit, &c. and the detriment that has arisen to Persons employed by them by non Payment of their Sallaries, &c. has so much prejudiced us against all Projects, that those who are pleas'd to apply themselves to us may be assur'd, that they shall have no Place propos'd to them, but they shall be satisfied of the stability of their Foundation, the certainty of the Payment of Sallaries, &c.
These are to give notice
THat the Son of Dr. Tho. Kirleus, who was Sworn Physician in Ordinary , to King Charles II. many years since until his Death; but first a Collegate Physician of London , who, with the same Drink and Pill, (hindring no Business) undertakes to Cure all Ulcers, Sores, Scabs, Itch, Scurfs, Leprosies, and Venereal or French Diseases, at all times of the Year, in all Bodies (as his Father did) without Fluxing, which is known to be dangerous, and often deadly. Of the two last he hath Cured many Hundreds in this City, many of them after Fluxing with Mercury, which raises the malignity and all other Evils from the lower parts, and fixeth it in the Head, which is not easily carried off, and so destroys many. He deals with all Persons according to their Abilities. The Drink is 3 s. a Quart, the Pills 1 s. a Box, with Directions. Take heed whom you trust in these Cures, for there are but few that knows how to cure it. He gives his Opinion to all that Write or come to him for nothing as well to those afar off, as if present.
He lives in Grays-Inn-lane in Plough-yard at the Glass.
London, Printed for E. Mallet at the Hat and Hawk in Bride-lane near Fleet-bridge, 1699.