Ordinary's Account, 24th June 1709.
Reference Number: OA17090624

The ORDINARY of NEWGATE his Account of the Behaviour, Confession, and Last Speech of the Malefactor that was Executed at Tyburn, on Friday the 24th day of June, 1709.

AT the Sessions held at Justice-Hall in the Old-Baily, on Wednesday the 8th, and Thursday the 9th instant, Three Persons were try'd for, and found Guilty of Capital Crimes; for which they all received Sentence of Death accordingly. Two of them have obtain'd a gracious Reprieve; which I hope they will take care to improve to the Glory of God; and the third Person, viz. Richard Hughes, a notorious House-breaker, is now order'd for Execution; which I heartily wish may prove a Mean to deterr others from such or the like unjust and wicked Practices.

While they were under this Condemnation I visited them constantly, and had them twice every day brought up to the Chapel of Newgate, where I pray'd with them, and read and expounded the Scriptures to them; drawing from thence such Arguments as I thought might convince them of the absolute necessity of their turning to God by Faith and Repentance and Amendment of Life.

On the Lord's Day the 12th instant, I preach'd to them, both in the Morning and Afternoon, upon Acts 19. v. 4, the Words being part of the Second Evening-Lesson, and these. Then said Paul, John verily baptized with the Baptism of Repentance, saying unto the People, that they should believe on Him which should come after him, that is, on Christ Jesus.

Which Words having first explain'd in general, I then proceeded to treat distinctly,

I. Of Faith: Shewing,

1. What it is: And,

2. What are the excellent Effects of it.

II. Of Repentance. And,

1. What Repentance is, and the Importance of it.

2. What are the just Motives thereto, and the blessed Fruits thereof.

On the Lord's Day the 19th instant, I preach'd again to them, both in the Morning and Afternoon, upon part of the Gospel for the Day; viz. Joh. 3. 3. Jesus answer'd and said unto him, Verily, verily, I say unto thee, Except a Man born again he cannot see the Kingdom of God.

The Text I first explain'd at large, with the Context; and then endeavour'd to shew;

I. What the New, or Second, Birth is, which is here described by being born again; and how it is of absolute necessity to qualify us for the Kindom of God.

II. What is to be understood by the Kingdom of God; and how much it concerns every one to labour after the attainment of it.

Having inlarg'd upon these, I then laid before my Auditory these Considerations.

1. How an Habit of Sin, to which unthinking Men insensibly arrive by degrees, is directly opposite to this New Birth.

2. What Remedy there is for this; and how Men may be renew'd and born again, so as to be able to recover themselves out of those Sins into which they are fall'n, and avoid those Miseries which they thereby have deserv'd.

These two last Heads I treated of under several Particulars: And concluded both these, and my other Discourses, with pressing Exhortations to the Persons condemn'd; endeavouring to awaken them out of their Spiritual Lethargy, and make them sensible of the Misery which by their heinous Sins and repeated Provocations against God, they had brought upon themselves in this World, and the danger they were in of falling under much greater and most insupportable and endless Misery in the World to come; which could no other way be prevented, but by Faith and Repentance: Graces that are the free Gifts of God, and of whom alone they are to be ask'd through the Merits and Mediation of JESUS CHRIST.

Thus having acquainted them, both with their great Duty and everlasting Interest, by laying [before them] Precept upon Precept, and Line upon Line, I hope that did, or may hereafter make some impression upon them; and that they who are spar'd and suffer'd to live longer, will manifest it in their future Lives and Conversations, and thereby recommend themselves to farther Favour, so as to have their Reprieve turn'd into a gracious Pardon. And as for him that is now appointed to die, I leave it to others to judge of him, as they shall see cause, from the following Account, which in my private Conferences with him he gave me of himself. And it is this.

He said, he had been a great Sinner, and had many ways, and at sundry times, offended God and wrong'd his Neighbour; That about two years ago he broke open a publick House at Lambeth, taking thence only to the value of about 3 Shillings, because he could there find no more at hand; for which Fact he was try'd and condemned to die at the Assizes at Kingston upon Thames, but was then reprieved, and afterwards pardon'd, and pleaded his Pardon there in March last; and being to give Security for his good Behaviour, he was remanded to the Marshalsea in Southwark, where he was a Prisoner before his Trial, and continu'd under Confinement there after his Pardon, till Daniel Walter (who by his frequent resorting thither coming to be acquainted with him) bail'd him out. Then he was easily perswaded by him, who (he said) had been so kind to him as to procure him his liberty, to assist him in Robbing of Houses, as they did together at Tottenham Cross, Harrow on the Hill, &c. and last of all at Twittenham, where they broke open the House of Mr. George Clarke, and took diverse Goods from thence on the 27th of May last, for which Fact he stands now condemn'd; and own'd, that his Condemnation is just. He confess'd also, that he had committed several Facts of this nature, before he ever was discover'd; and that he did then act by himself, and had no body concerned with him in any such Facts before he came to be acquainted with the abovenamed Daniel Walter, who turned an Evidence against him in this Robbery for which he is to die. I found this Hughes ready enough to acknowledge the Justice of his Sentence, and that he had been also in other respects a great Offender; but he would not come to Particulars; saying, that he had forgotten a great many wicked things that he had been guilty of; neither could he make any Amends to the Persons he had injur'd, but begg'd GOD's Pardon and theirs for all that he had done contrary to the Laws of God and Man. I found him very ignorant in Matters of Religion, he not being able so much as to read. He told me, he was about 30 years of age, born at Bettus in the County of Denbigh in Wales; That while he liv'd there, he follow'd Husbandry , and would now and then be pilfering, as he found opportunity, but was never brought before any Justice for it: That when some few years since he came up to London, he turned a Labouring Man , and served as such, for a while, in the Queen's Yard at Deptford; and, That sometimes he resolv'd to live honestly by his Labour, but his idle Disposition, vicious Company, and more vicious Inclinations hindr'd him from it; so that he easily yielded to any Temptation he met with of doing ill: And for that, and the melancholy Con

sequences of it, he said, he blam'd none but himself; for he well knew when he did amiss, that he ought to have done, and could (if he would) have done otherwise. This is in substance what he declar'd to me concerning himself. I must say this of him, that I observed him to be very attentive to publick Exhortations, and seemingly devout at Prayer. But at the same time I discover'd something in him, which gave me great reason to think, that he more lean'd on the Hope of Life here, than made due and timely preparation for that which was to come; the time he had to fit himself for Eternity (which was longer than is usually allow'd in such Cases) making him entertain the deceitful and dangerous Thoughts of obtaining a Reprieve at last. So that he only began to think of Death in good earnest, when just come (as it were) upon the very brink of it.

At length he made this particular Confession to me; That since he came out of the Marshalsea, he robb'd a Gentlewoman's House at Hackney, and a Gentleman's at Hammersmith, a Minister's at a Place (the Name whereof he knew not) a little beyond Kingston upon Thames, where he had but a few months before (as is abovesaid) received his Pardon for the Burglary by him committed at Lambeth; and, That besides these, he had broke open and robb'd three other Ministers Houses, viz. one at Henley, and (as is before mention'd) one at Tottenham, and another at Harrow on the Hill. Which Robberies, together with that he is now to die for, he said, were all he remembred he had of late committed, and that he committed them all (that at Lambeth excepted) in the Company and by the Perswasion of the aforenamed D. W. Observing, that among these Robberies, there were no less than four by him and D. W. committed with in a little time in Ministers Houses, I ask'd him, Whether they had any particular Design to rob such Persons? To which he answer'd, No; and that it so fell out without any such Design. He said, he was heartily sorry, and begg'd Pardon for the wrongs he had done, which he could not repair; and protested, that he never had it in his heart to hurt (in their Person) any that he robb'd, and that he never carry'd Pistols or Weapons about him to do them mischief.

Notwithstanding his having come so far as to discover so many Robberies, which he had lately committed, I still suspected him not to be so free as he might and ought to have been, in giving me a full Account of his wicked Practices; wherefore I press'd him further to make a full and unreserv'd Confession of what he had done, and give Glory to God. Upon which he declar'd, That before he robb'd the House at Lambeth, he had committed four or five such Robberies, whereof he could remember but two particularly, viz. one at a Tobacconist's House in Redcross-street, London; the other, a House on Hounslow-Heath; adding to this, That what he had call'd before Small Pilferings, by him frequently us'd in his own Country, were (some of 'em) Facts of the same nature with those he had committed since in and about London. All this he told me but a very few hours before his Death; and at the same time own'd, that he had liv'd a debauch'd Life, which made his Condition so much the worse; and, that he should be undone for ever, unless GOD were merciful to him.

When at the Place of his Execution, whither he was this day carry'd from Newgate in a Cart, and where I attended him for the last time, I exhorted him to clear his Conscience, and not go out of this World with any Sin unrepented of; the burthen of which would certainly sink him into Hell. Upon this he told me, That he had clear'd his Conscience, and made (he hop'd) his Peace with GOD; and so desir'd the Spectators to pray for his Soul.

Then I pray'd and sung some Penitential Psalms with him; and after he had rehears'd the Apostles Creed, and declar'd he dy'd in that Faith, and I had pray'd again for him, and recommended him to the Divine Goodness, I retir'd from him: And after some little time had been allow'd him for his private Devotions, the Cart drew away, and he was turn'd off; he all the while calling on God in these and the like Ejaculations: Good God Almighty, look down upon me: Dear God, receive my precious Soul.

This is all the Account, which in this Haste (for so I am always upon these Occasions) can be given of this Malefactor, by me,

PAUL LORRAIN, Ordinary .

Friday, June 24, 1709.

At the Request of, and in Justice to one, who I suppose an honest Person, and also for the Vindication of Truth, which had lately been (as it is too often) abus'd by Mercenary People, who take the liberty to publish False Things under my Name; I think my self obliged to insert here a Certificate, which I lately gave under my Hand to Mrs. Kembrookes Hazelwood. And it is as follows.

THese are to certify all whom it may concern, That what is contain'd in a certain Paper lately publish'd under my Name, pretending to give an Account of Mark Harris's Confession, who was executed on the 18th Instant, is false, especially as to what relates to Mrs. Kembrookes Hazelwood; and, That the same Paper was never put out by me, neither did the said Harris mention one Word to me concerning the aforesaid Mrs. Hazelwood. Witness my Hand this 24th day of May, 1709. PAUL LORRAIN, Ordinary of Newgate .


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