THE ORDINARY of NEWGATE his ACCOUNT, Of the Behaviour, Confession, and dying Words of the Malefactors who were Executed on Friday the 11th of August, 1727, at Tyburn.
AT the King's Commission of Oyer and Terminer, and Jail Delivery of Newgate, held (before the Right Honourable Sir JOHN EYLES, Bart . Lord Mayor of the City of London. The Rt. Honourable Sir Thomas Pengelly, Knt . Lord Chief Baron of the Exchequer , the Honourable Mr. Justice Denton, the Honourable Mr. Justice Reynolds, the Honourable Mr. Baron Thompson, Recorder of the City of London, and John Raby, Esq ; Serjeant at Law ; and others his Majesty's Justices of Jail Delivery, and Oyer and Terminer aforesaid: Together with several of his Majesty's Justices of the Peace for the City of London, and County of Middlesex, at Justice-Hall, in the Old-Baily, on Wednesday, Thursday, Friday, and Saturday, being the 5th, 6th, 7th, and 8th of July, 1727, in the first Year of his Majesty's Reign.
Five Men, viz. Alex. Jones, J. Prat, Tho. Timms, Thomas Perry, and Edward Brown; and three Women, viz. Mary Reynolds, Sylvia Sherlock, and Anne Senior were by the Jury found guilty of Capital Offences, and receiv'd Sentence of Death. Richard Herbert, and Eliza. Wade, alias Boucher, having been found guilty and Sentenc'd to die, at the preceeding Sessions holden on the 17th, and 18th of May last, and kept from that Time to the last Sessions, on the 5th of July, &c. were in Company with them, while they were under Sentence.
They were Instructed in the Principles of Christianity, how that without Faith it is impossible to please God: For he that cometh to God, must believe that he is; and that he is a Rewarder of them who diligently seek him. Heb, xi. 6. From which and other Points of Scripture I shew'd them, that by the Laws and Dictates of Nature it was ingrafted in the Minds of all Men, that there is a God, or supream Being, who created and governs all Things; yet considering the laps'd State we are now plung'd into, in order to the perfecting our corrupt Nature, and preparing us for the enjoyment of God; it was necessary, that Revelation of the Divine Will should be added to the Light of Nature, which is now in a great Measure, if not totally, obscur'd by our Apostacy and Disobedience: This Defect is now made up to us sufficiently by the Gospel, wherein we are assur'd, that God so lov'd the World, that he gave his only beloved Son for us, that whosoever believth in him might not perish, but have everlasting Life; who hath brought Life and Immortality to Light thro' the Gospel. God having thus purchas'd for us a Right to eternal Life by the Death of his Son. I show'd 'em, that it was the Interest of all Men to endeavour, by the grace of God, to partake in the Benefits of Christ's purchas'd Redemption; and more especially of 'em who had forfeited their Lives to the Laws of the Country. Then I took occasion to exhort 'em in the most pressing Manner, to improve the short time allow'd them, in fearing, loving and serving God, and turning unto him with their whole Hearts, from whom they had so deeply revolted. I instructed them in the nature and design of the Christian Sacraments how we were early dedicated to God in our Baptism, and that we ought to Mourn for the many Breaches of our Baptismal Vows and Engagements; And that Christ having given us another Sacrament, as a Confirmation of our Baptismal Vows, as his last Legacy and Token of his Love, when he was leaving this World, it is our Duty to receive this Sacrament, for strengthening our Graces, confirming good Purposes in us, and disposing us for Eternity; That being Partakers of Christ's death, represented to us in this blessed Sacrament, we may likewise become Partakers of his Resurrection.
When these, and such like Exhortations were given them, they behav'd themselves gravely, but for all the Prayers and Exhortations which could be possibly said, they were all very far from appearing to have any due Concern upon their Spirits, in Consideration of the most miserable Circumstances they were then in. Anne Senior told a Romantick Story of an Angel appearing to her; and both she and Sylvia Sherlock frequently smil'd in time of Devotion, for which they were reprov'd and promis'd not to do the same again: The other Woman Reynolds appear'd always with abundance of Gravity and appearance of Devotion. Neither the Men nor Women could make regular Responses, only Richard Herbert and Alexander
Jones (at times when he thought fit) made such Responses in complying with the Worship, as they could. Timms and Brown were much afflicted with sickness, and although they could read, yet their Weakness and the bad Air of the Hold effected them so much, that they could hardly see. Elizabeth Wade, alias, Boucher, seldom attended in Chappel; but as I visited her frequently in the Hold, she pretended Penitence, but shew'd small Signs thereof. They were for the most part very ignorant in Religion, which made me take extraordinary Pains to cultivate the first Principles of Christianity into them, and press them to their Duty, by the threat'nings of Hell and Joys of Heaven; by the Rewards annexed to Virtue and Goodness, and the unavoidable Punishments following upon an irreligious and wicked Life.
Upon Saturday, the 5th of August, the Report of the abovemention'd ten Malefactors, under Sentence of Death, was made to his Majesty in Council; and seven of them, viz. Richard Herbert for breaking into the Dwelling-house of Richard Langford, with a design to steal and bear away Goods, &c. Eliz. Wade, alias, Boucher, for Shop-lifting; Alexander Jones for a Street-robbery, in assaulting Mr. Fawcet; Mary Reynolds for Shop lifting, and stealing 5 China Bowls, val. 4 l, John Prat, for breaking a Chest of Drawers, and taking thence a Canvas-bag, val. 1 d. 4 Guineas, and two Shillings in silver; Jane Senior, for privately stealing three Guineas in the House of Samuel Thresher; and Sylvia Sherlock, for privately stealing 7 l. from Charles Headman; receiv'd his Majesty's most gracious Reprive. The Remaining three, viz. Thomas Timms, Thomas Perry and Edward Brown were order'd for Execution.
What follows is an ingenuous Narrative of their Carriage under Sentence, to all concern'd or desirous to know the same.
The said Thomas Timms, Thomas Perry and Edward Brown, were indicted for assaulting Samuel Sells on the Highway, putting him in fear, and taking from him a Pen-knife, val. 4 d. and 20 l. in Money, on Tuesday the 4th of May last, about 5 in the Morning, near Hounslow-Heath.
Thomas Timms, about 28 Years of Age; had a mean Education suitable to his Parent's Circumstances. He did not appear to have been so extravagantly Wicked, as many who bring themselves into the like Misfortunes. When of Age, his Parents and Friends put him Apprentice to a Carver of Chairs , when his Apprentiship was out, he Married and liv'd in good Repute for some Years, his Honesty not being suspected, till wanting Business, he listed himself a Souldier in the first Regiment of Guards, he commonly follow'd his Employment, except when upon Duty, which he said was so often, that his Business could not Maintain his Family: And a few Months since falling Sick, he was put into St. Bartholomew's-Hospital, but then being reduc'd to great Straits, having had little or no Money allow'd him to supply his Necessities. Afterwards recovering his Health so as to go Abroad, and wanting Money, the first Enterprize he took in hand, was to go with his two Companions on the 3d of May last, towards Hounslow Heath, in order to to rob such People as they should Meet with that Night, they all three lay in the Fields, and next Morning they met with a poor Man, who telling them he had no Money, they let him go; soon after Samuel Sells from Windsor coming up in his Chaise, they stopt him; Brown held the Horse till Timms receiv'd 3 Half-Crowns, but Brown came up and said that was too little, and demanding more, Sells gave them about 10 or 11 s. more, which was all they got, amounting to about 17 s. as they all three constantly aver'd, although he swore much more against them; allegding that whilst the other robb'd him, Perry stood with a Truncheon over his Head, which Perry denied, saying that he was at a considerable Distance, and offer'd no such Violence to him, but confess'd that all of them had Truncheons, which they afterwards threw away, besides a Sword and a Cane which Brown had. Timms had been taught to read and write in his Youth, yet had so far forgot that he could now read but little. He said, that he had liv'd pretty regularly, till of late, when either Want or Despair seizing him, the Devil working upon his bad Inclinations induc'd him to take that desperate Resolution of robbing on the High-way. He confess'd that he had kept Company with lewd Women. And said that he never committed Theft or Robbery before, and that the Action for which he died, was the only capital Crime he ever was guilty of.
He confess'd himself to be among the chief of Sinners, begging Pardon of God and all the World, which he hop'd to obtain, as believing the Scriptures to be the Word of God, and Christ the Son of God to be the only Saviour of Sinners, and however great his Sins had been, yet that he always knew, and wanted not Inclinations to do that which is good, which he pleaded not as a Merit, but only relied and cast himself upon the Mercy of God, Merits of Jesus Christ, who died for our Sins, and rose again for our Justification, and who now sits at the Right-hand of God, pleading and interceeding for the Pardon of the Sins of poor Mortals. He always appear'd very Devout and Attentive at Prayers and Exhortations,
and when I spoke to him in private, express'd a deep Sense of Religion upon his Spirit, with a firm Hope of attaining eternal Life, through Jesus Christ our only Saviour. His Mother with many Tears, said, that he was her only Child, and that he had never Offended his Parents, neither had she ever heard of any Crime committed by him, excepting this one for which he died.
THOMAS PERRY, about forty Years of Age, born at Cardiff, in Wales, of honest but mean Parents, had no Education at Schools, and could not read nor write. His Parents died when he was young, and left him a poor Orphan, being cast upon the World to do for himself as he could: When he was of Age he came to London, and bound himself to a Glass-grinder in Shoe-Lane, with whom he serv'd out his Time; after which he listed himself in the First Regiment of Guards , where he serv'd for some time in Flanders, before the Peace of Utretch; after which he return'd to London with the Regiment, continuing in the same, till the unfortunate Adventure befell him for which he died. He own'd, (although at first all the Three denied it) that they had made an Appointment to go out in Company and rob upon the High-way, and that Timms was the first Proposer of it, tho' indeed he and Brown were too ready to comply with the Proposal. He said, that in the preceding course of his Life, he had behav'd himself with indifferent Circumspection, till about a Year ago, he gave himself to a more loose and irregular Life than formerly, never going to Church, as he had been formerly used to do. He said, that having been at Windsor some time ago, he met with the Misfortune of being dangerously bit in the Leg by a Dog, which confin'd him to his Quarters there for some Weeks, during which time he had no Body to look after him, and small allowance of Money to supply his Necessities; but when he recover'd, and was able to Travel, coming up to Town, and there falling into some Differences and Jars with certain Persons, who had Business with him, and not having constant but very uncertain Employ at his Trade of Glass grinding, and being short of Money; These and such like Misfortunes and Discontents made him prone to engage and ready to comply with the first Proposal of robbing on the Highway. Notwithstanding Mr. Sells swore that, while the other two robb'd him, he, viz. Perry, held a Truncheon over his Head, threatning to knock him down in case of the least Opposition; yet he said, that he did nothing but stood at a considerable distance 8 or 9 yards off; and Sells asking if he knew him? he answer'd, he did, for he had frequently drunk at his House, for it is a Publick one at Windsor, and he added, of a very indifferent Character. He confest that he had not liv'd conformable to the Gospel of Jesus Christ, having been too much guilty of accompanying lewd Women, altho' he had a Wife and several Children of his own; of drinking to Excess; Swearing and keeping idle Company. Although he was Illeterate, yet he had more Knowledge of Religion than a great many of these unfortunate Wretches. He declar'd himself very Penitent for all his Sins; having been always very grave and attentive at Prayers and Exhortations, that he believ'd to be saved through the Merits of Jesus Christ, who suffer'd and died for his Sins; that he was in Peace with all Mankind, forgiving all Men the Injuries done him, as he expected forgiveness at the Hands of God; and died in appearance of having a firm Hope of obtaining Mercy from God, and eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord.
EDWARD BROWN, about 24 Years of Age, born of honest Parents in the City of Oxford, who took care of his Education, when he was young, putting him to School, and instructing him in the Principles of Religion, which he understood indifferently well, according to his Station and Capacity. When of Age, they put him out Apprentice to a Glass-grinder , to which he serv'd out his time; after which he Married, and continu'd a good Husband for a Year, but then betook himself to idle Company, spending the Money he had gain'd in two or three Weeks, in one Day or two; about which time he contracted Acquaintance with strange Women, who with other bad Company prov'd his Ruin. He appear'd to be very Ingenuous in his last Confessions, owning that after they had taken their Cups liberally and spent all their Money, they agreed to walk out towards Hounslow-Heath, he having a Sword and a Cane, and all of 'em taking Truncheons in their Hands, to rob who they met upon the High-way, not extenuating his Crime, but frankly acknowledging that it was by Consent they went out, adding, that such a Thought never came into his Mind before, and that it was the Devil put it into their Herrts to commit so notorious an Offence; but who was the first Proposer of betaking themselves to such a wicked Course, he could not positively tell, but believed it was Timms. He was afflicted with Sickness most part of the time he was in the Hold, which render'd him the more incapable of performing his Duty, as he ought and desir'd to do. He seem'd to be a young Man naturally of a good and easy Temper, and own'd that he stopt and held Mr. Sells's Horse, till Timms robbed him, and oblig'd Sells to give him more Money, than at first he had given to Timms, till Mr. Sells begg'd they would let him go, having no more left him but Eighteen-pence. All the Three constantly affirm'd that they got only Seventeen Shillings; which was 5 s. 8 d. to each of 'em, for which they died, never having robb'd or stollen more in their Life, as they said, and
went to Death with it. I told 'em that it was not the greatness or smallness of the Sum, but the breach of the express Law of the Land, whereby they were forbid to attack, threaten or rob any Person upon pain of Death, on the Highway, which took away their Lives; and as to the small Sum they robb'd the Man off, if it had been 100 l. instead of 17 s. they would have taken it. The Truth of all which they acknowledg'd, and in consequence the Justice of their Sentence according to Law. I took occasion to represent to Brown, how ungrateful he had been to God and Man for the good Education he had got, in being guilty of so great Wickedness. He acknowledg'd, that he had had the Advantage of a good Education, but had been more heedless than he ought; and that in several Instances he had been disobedient to his Parents. I exhorted him to repent of all Sins in particular, and especially that of the capital Sin he had committed, and which had brought him to so much Shame and Sorrow, for which he justly forfeited his Life to the Laws of the Kingdom, and brought this Disgrace, not only upon himself, but upon his Family and Kindred who were to survive him. He confess'd himself to have been among the chief of Sinners, begging Pardon of God and Man for his manifold Offences, expressing a strong Confidence in the Mercy of God, thro' Jesus Christ our Lord, in whom he believed as his only Saviour, confessing the Justice of his Sentence, and that the Punishment of his Iniquity was infinitely less than what he had deserved, forgiving all Men the Injuries done him, as he expected forgiveness from a gracious and merciful God, and dying in Peace with all the World.
All the Prisoners who were under Sentence, were confident that they should get a gracious Reprieve from his Majesty, which I believe made them something more careless in their Duty, than otherwise they would have been. These three unfortunate Men having entertain'd the same Apprehensions: When the Account came of their being order'd for Execution, they were struck with Surprize; yet were of such Courage and Resolution, that one could scarce discern any visible change upon them; only that they were more sollicitous in their Preparation for Eternity, and indeed all of 'em went to suffer (as they said in firm Hopes of eternal Life, through the Mercy of God, in Jesus Christ our Lord.
At the Place of Execution,
THey all behav'd very gravely and devoutly, complying with the Prayers, and making what Responses they could. They desir'd, after the 23d Psalm of David was sung, to sing the Lamentation of a Sinner, which being comply'd with, they said, that they had made full Confessions before, and had no more to add, only, Brown said, that what farther Confessions he had, he would make the same to God.
This all the Account given by me,