NUMBER V. for the said YEAR.
Printed for, and sold by T. PARKER, in Jewin-street, and R. GRIFFITHS, at the Dunciad, in Pater-noster Row, the only authorised Printers of the ORDINARY'S Account M.DCC.LVI.
BY virtue of the King's commission of the peace, Oyer and Terminer, and jail-delivery of Newgate, held before the right honourable Slingsby Bethell, esq; lord mayor of the city of London, lord chief baron Parker, Mr. justice Birch, Mr. justice Wilmot, Sir William Moreton, knight, recorder , and other of his Majesty's justices of jail-delivery for the city of London, and county of Middlesex, held at Justice Hall in the Old-Bailey, on Wednesday the 14th, Thursday the 15th, Friday the 16th, and Saturday the 17th of July, in the 30th year of his Majesty's reign, John Girle was capitally convicted, and received sentence of death accordingly on Friday the 16th. He was indicted for the murder of Thomas Roberts, August the 16th, 1755.
John Girle was about 26 years of age, having been born in that part of the ward of Farringdon-within, which is called St. Faith's parish. His parents removed when he was young into the parish of St. Luke, in Old-Street , where he went to school, but profited little; nor did he make more advantage afterwards in the charity school of the ward where he was born.
When he left the school, his father using Leadenhall-Market, took his son with him to keep him out of harm's way, and in time the son took on to his father's business, which was dealing in poultry , which they went about town, and country to vend, and in winter imployed their time in catching of birds. The father dying, the son continued to get his bread in the same way of life 'till that unhappy affair happened, for which he suffered. Nor could we find any thing extraordinary, either good or bad, deserving of notice, till this time.
On the 16th of August, about seven o'clock in the evening, he said, that he and his partner having caught some birds, went to Roberts's cellar, near Ely-House, on Holborn-Hill, with intent to sell him what birds they had caught. His partner, he says, went down into the cellar to him to offer the birds to sale; Thomas Roberts refusing to buy, words arose between them two, which Girle heard, as he stood above in the street, at the cellar window. And, as he said, being in liquor, he began to call Roberts, and gave him abusive language; upon which he came up out of the cellar. And soon after, as they were talking to one another, Girle thrust the stick, which he had in his hand, into Roberts's left eye; having before made use of some bad expressions, and threatnings, that if he came up stairs, he would punch both his eyes out.
Having so done, Girle and his partner were both soon taken into custody, and being taken before a justice, he took the whole blame upon himself; so his partner was sent about his business, and he was committed to Clerkenwell New-Prison; from whence he found out some method to escape, but it was not a long time before he was retaken, and kept safe, till he came to be tried upon an indictment found against him at Hicks's-Hall, for a misdemeanor in this case. Of which he was found guilty, and sentenced to be imprisoned in Newgate, for a year, ten months of which confinement were passed, when he came to be tried in July last for murder.
Roberts lived after he received this hurt at Girle's hands about seven Months; and tho' he went about his business as formerly, yet it seems he always afterwards complained of pains and aches in his head, which the anguish of the hurt he received occasioned; and was attacked frequently by con
vulsion-fits afterwards, which he never was used to before.
Roberts received the hart August 16th, died the last day of March last. And an indictment being preferred against him in July last, upon trial he was found guilty, as all the maladdies, and complaints which befel him afterwards, seemed to have had their rise from that hurt, as Roberts declared a few hours before he died. Being found guilty, he received sentence of death immediately, and was agreeable to his sentence, executed on Monday the 9th of July.
He was a poor, ignorant, and weak young fellow; but behaved as well as could be expected from such an one, between the time of sentence being passed on him, and the time of his suffering. He acknowledged the justice of his fate, and hoped it might be a warning to others, to take care how they permitted their passions to run them headlong into inconsiderate, and unlawful acts, the consequence of which cost him his life. He died resigned, and hoped for a better state thro' God's mercy.
By virtue of the King's commission of the peace, Oyer and Terminer, and jail-delivery of Newgate, held before the right honourable Slingsby Bethell, esq; lord-mayor of the city of London, lord chief justice Willes, Mr. justice D Mr. Adams, Sir William Mor, knight recorder , and others His Majesty's justices of the peace, held at Justice-hall in the Old-Bailey, on Wednesday the 15th, Thursday, the 16th, Friday the 17th, Saturday the 18th, and Monday the 20th of September, in the 30th year of His Majesty's reign.
He was indicted for the wilful murder of his first and lawful wife, on Tuesday the 20th of July last.
William Cannicott says, he was about forty years of age, being born at a village called Staples, near Taunton in Sorsetshire. His parents gave him such education as their circumstances would admit; and having learned both to read and write, he was sent forth into the world in his youthful days; and the first employment he entered upon. When he left his parents, was a gentleman's service, and so he has gone from one
place to another, for upwards of twenty two years past, and says, he does not remember he was ever out of place six months at a time, during that revolution of years. He says, he was married to the poor murdered wife upwards of sixteen years, who was near twenty years elder than himself; and that he was married to the last woman within two years past, and not having lived with his first wife for five or six years past, she has kept house in East-street, near Red-lion-square, and behaved so as to gain a very good name among such as have lodged in her house; and the whole neighbourhood also speak well of her. But the new flame had extinguished the old, and nothing but reproaches followed the name of the first wife, while the highest praises were bestowed on the latter, who is near twenty years younger than himself.
In the course of our conversation since he came to Newgate (it is his own account) that he met accidentally with the murdered wife on Saturday evening, the 18th of July last, when, among other things that then passed between them, she asked him for some money. He says he told her he had none to spare, as the time of receiving his wages was not yet come. And as it was near the time (eight o'clock) that he usually returned home every evening, he staid not long with her, but, he says, before they parted, there was an agreement made between them, to have a meeting again on Tuesday evening following. On the Tuesday following, he says, his master going out of town, left him behind, on account that he had hurt his knee by a fall, and he was indulged in staying behind, in hopes that rest might soon recover him of that hurt. However, after dinner, he says, he thought with himself to take a walk in the fields; accordingly he did so, and met a boy, to whom he gave three half-pence, to go to his wife in East-street, and tell her, that a person wanted to speak with her in the fields, near the Adam and Eve, near Paddington road. The boy went, she came to him, and upon meeting, went into the Adam and Eve, and drank tea; at which place they had no discourse, but about indifferent matters. After this they walked together to the Harp near Kentish Town, where they had six pennyworth of rum and water, in a room up stairs. Then also she asked him for money, which request not being agreeable to his humour, his passions (which were
very strong) took fire, and he wanted to be gone. But as that evening was a very stormy one, and there fell a violent shower of rain, attended with thunder and lightning, he was obliged to stay longer than he desired. At the abating of the storm, he flung open the window, to see whether it was over; and he says, that fatal minute the evil spirit was so strong in him, that he resolved then upon this bloody deed. A fatal minute in deed! big with a catastrophe, which is most shocking but to relate. If this, vile as it is, was the only crime of the kind he was the perpetrator of, 'tis the better for him, the less he had to answer for; though indeed enough, if not too much. But though whispers of that kind have been spread abroad, we choose to pass it over without any farther notice, and hope 'twas only rumour; for even this act of barbarity, which he suffered for, is of such a nature, and is attended with such aggravated circumstances, (if not premeditated and intended before the time he allots it) as, had it not been actually done, 'twas scarce to be believed it could have been in the power of human nature to go through with, and perpetrate, viz. that a man should have a heart so steeled, as, in the most ard of manner, to destroy the life of a woman, whom he had (before God and man) solemnly promised to support and defend in all circumstances of life. And,
We shall go on to the account of the murder committed by Cannicott, with his confession of the whole affair to Mr. Barnes, high constable for Westminster, in New Prison, and the reasons which induced him to it, viz.
On Wednesday the 21st of July, in the morning, one Ann Wedgborough, who lived servant to a gentleman that had lodgings in Mrs. Cannicott's house in Eaststreet, near Red-lion-square, being told that a woman was found stripped and murdered, a pair of pointed scissars and a cord lying by her in the fields near Tottenham Court road, was greatly alarmed, lest it should prove to be the above Mrs. Cannicott, knowing she had not been at home all night. Mrs. Wedgborough went to a gentleman in the same street, told him what she had heard, together with her reasons for suspecting it to be the above person, and begged he would go with her to view the body. Accordingly they went, and found it to be the person suspected.
Having, seen the body, they went to Mr. in Bow-street, Covent-Garden, where Mr. Welch took Mrs. Wedgboroughs information upon oath, to the following purpo, viz. she deposed, That she met the deceased as she was going out of her house the preceding evening, dressed, who told her, that a boy had been there with a message from a gentleman in a gold laced hat and waistcoat, who she thought was her husband; and that she was going to him, in hopes he had brought her some money. These circumstances. occasioned the said Mrs. Wedgborough to inspect her husband was the murderer, knowing that a difference was between them. A warrant was then immediately granted to Mr. Barnes, high constable for Westminster, to apprehend William Cannicott; but he living butler to a person of quality, Mr. Welch thought it proper to wait upon that noble personage, to make him first acquainted with the case; but finding his I - was gone into the country, and Cannicott not at home, the person was told there was a suspicion of murder against Cannicott, and strict charge was given him to secure him, if he came in, till Mr.Barnes returned. When Mr. Barnes returned in company with Mr. Welch, Cannicot was come home, but was denied and after their staying, there till almost one in the morning, they were told, he was not expected home that night; tho' as he told me himself, he was all the while locked up in the parlour. It may perhaps be thought that this was strange dealing with these gentlemen, but the reason given for this answer and denial (which we hope and believe is true) was, that when he was let in (which was before nine o'clock, the murder being committed between seven and eight) the porter told him that Mr. Barnes had been there, acquainted him with what he was accused of, and said he was to call again; thinking by this declaration he might be able, from his behaviour, to judge of his guilt or innocence, and keep an eye over him accordingly. And instead of appearing the man he formerly did, his behaviour was quite the reverse; with all the solemn protestations tongue could utter, insisting upon his innocence, and assuring the porter, if he suffered him to be taken that night, and hurried to goal, for what he would acquit himself of next morning, he would endeavour to make him lose his place. But he promised at the
same time, he would surrender to Mr. Barnes the next morning. The porter then submitted to secrete him for that night; (Wednesday) but was determined every place about the house should be well fastened, and that he should be delivered up on the morrow.
Accordingly, on Thursday morning by six o'clock Mr. Barnes was called out of bed, who went with Cannicott and the porter to the Brown-Bear, in Bow-Street, where they breakfasted, and stayed till the justices were called. And Mr. Barnes has declared to me, that during that time, his behaviour was such as almost persuaded him in his own mind, that he was not the man. The justices being both ready, Cannicott underwent a very strict examination, and denied the fact. He said, he had been at Bloody-Bridge in his way to Chelsea, that fatal evening the murder was committed: but, as the evening turned out very bad, he returned, and he was wet through before he got home.
Upon being asked, whether the hat he then had on (which was a plain one) was the same he had on that dismal night of the murder, the Tuesday. He answered, Yes; though it appeared to be a new one, and not one drop of rain had ever come upon it. This was one strong circumstance, which caused the suspicion of his guilt to gain ground.
A pair of scissars, upon searching him, were found upon him; which, he said, he had in use for two years, which was another circumstance of his guilt. For, the scissars appeared new, the sheath old, and did not fit each other. But, on trying the bloody scissars, which were found laying not far from the dead body of his wife, they exactly fitted. And, on examining the bloody scissars minutely, there was found on the inside of the bow the letters L. D. which suggested an opinion, that they had been ground, and those letters were the distinguished marks of the grinder. The next person brought before the justices, was the second wife, who also underwent an examination; which being ended, he was commited to New-Prison, and she to Covent-Garden Round-house. The next step taken by the magistrates, was, to consult how to come at the bottom of this obscure affair. They resolved to send proper persons to drag all the ponds and ditches, near where the body was found. Orders were given to enquire of every body, and at every house in the neigh
bourhood, if any such persons (describing both their dresses) had been seen that day together. Enquiry was also made after the grinder of the bloody scissars, and the vender of the new ones; all which enquities had the desired effect For, part of her cloaths were found in a pond near where the body lay. A house was found where they drank tea in the afternoon; persons appeared, who saw them going into the fields after drinking tea (as he told me) at the Adam and Eve, near Paddington new road; and, a person appeared, who spoke to him, after they had drank six penny worth of ru and water at the Harp, during the first shower in the evening, and desired him not to go to London, as another heavy shower was coming on. His gold laced hat (which he had on the bloody Tuesday night) was found very wet in his trunk, and likewise his coat and waistcoat. And lastly, the grinder of the bloody scissars, and the vender of the new ones appeared. All these evidences being collected together, he was dressed in the cloaths and hat which he had on the night he committed this fact (which he put on without the least appearance of fear of terror) and thus dressed he was was brought again to Mr. Fielding's to be re-examined; and yet, was he so hardened as to deny the knowledge of the crime committed, and as yet persisted in his innocence. But, when the above evidences swore to the identity of his person, and proved his being at the Harp, near Paddington new road; when the foreman of an eminent cutler in Old-Bond-Street proved, he sold the new scissars to Cannicott the morning after the murder was committed, and that the bloody scissars were ground for him about six weeks before, he could not longer hold out, but confessed he had murdered her, but still positively denied stripping her.
Nothing appearing against his second wife, she was discharged, and he was sent back to New-Prison. When he desired Mr. Barnes, who had his keys, to send him some clean linnen. Mr. Barnes went himself, and talked with him some time about stripping the body, which he yet declared he was innocent of. But, upon Mr. Barnes's telling him, if he did not, some body else must be concerned, and in order to get it from him, saying, he would immediately take his wife upon suspicion; he was so worked upon,
that instantly clasping him in his arms, Cannicott beged he would not hurt her, for she was innocent, and he the only guilty person, Left his Delilah should be hurt, he did own, that he stripped her. Her shoes and hat he tore to pieces, and dispersed about the fields, her stays, &c. he said he had thrown into a pond near Marybone-workhouse, and on that side which was next the hedge, where they were found. Her ring, and silver buckles, he sold the next morning to a Silversmith, for nine shillings, in Bond-street, who acknowledged the purchase. After which he persuaded his second wife to take a walk with him to Chelsea, with whom he spent the major part of the purchase money, having, as he said, only eighteen-pence left, when he was delivered up. All these things he confessed to Mr. Barnes, while in New Prison; besides which, also the following particulars, viz. After exclaiming against the conduct and temper of the poor murdered wife, (who from every one else had a good name) and crying aloud the praises of the second wife, with he utmost pleasure; he declared, that he had no intent to murder the first wife, when he sent the boy for her, whom he met with by chance. When his wife came, they were together without words, or quarrelling, till they came to the Harp, where she asked him, if he had received his wages, and hoped he would give her some money. He told her, he had not. But she, thinking to the contrary, began to be a little warm. Upon which words arose, and he threw up the window in haste, to see if the rain was over, that he might be gone: when he told Mr. Barnes, that at that instant the bloody thought came into his head, and he resolved to be the death of her.
As they were going down the stairs, he saw an old cord of a bed hanging on the rails, which he thought would answer his purpose. He acknowledged also seeing the son who swore to him, and the person who cautioned him from going to town, because of the rain, and because it ightened very much.
The cord he had put into his pocket, and when he entered the field he thought the most convenient (which goes by by the Name of Thirty Acres) he stopt, and she passed him; and, as she pass'd, she said, My dear, flap your hat, lest the lightning should hurt your eyes. He, at the same time, was making a noose with
the cord, in order to hang or strangle her. He followed her, and threw it over her head, and pulled her backwards; but she struggling very much, broke the cord, when they both fell down, and she got it from about her neck. Then his cowardly and diabolical spirit fearing she might get the better of him before he could prepare the cord again, recollected his scissars, pulled them out, and stabb'd her with them on either side the neck, and in other places, as fast as he could, till she expired.
After a while, he said, his reason broke in upon him, and he began to reflect on what he had done; which shocked him so much, that he swooned away; and how long he lay so, he could not tell. But upon recovering, his thoughts were immediately turned upon how he might escape being discovered, which he imagined could not be effected without stripping her. He then takes up the scissars a second time, cuts off her cloaths, and disposed of them as before related.
He then went homewards, and calling at a publick-house the corner of Berkley-square, ordered a pot of porter to be sent home to him. When he came home, he went into the pantry, and washed his ruffles and sleeves in the place where he used to wash his glasses, and then he put the shirt in the foul linnen bag, where Mr. Barnes found it; after which he eat bread and cheese, drank his beer, and, as his fellow-servant said, appeared about the house as usual, and as if no harm had been done by him.
Thus was this most horrid act put in execution, whether premeditated or not, the reader may determine from this account of it given to Mr. Barnes, the abovementioned gentleman, without having recourse to his own account, as yesterday published.
I have taken the liberty to read it since I wrote the above, and declare, had he given it to me, it should not have appeared in my name. I shall only say of it, that there does not appear to me, to be any one expression throughout the whole, which might signify, that he was sorry for the most enormous crime he had committed. If he wrote it himself, I think the matter is clear, as the whole tends rather to vindicate the bigamy, and does not at all condemn the unlimited indulgence of unbridled passions, tho' the former is prohi
bited by human, and the latter by divine authority.
He was a man of very strong passions, had tears at will, and was skilled in fair speaking; and, since in Newgate, behaved as a penitent when I saw him.
He carried the same appearance along with him thro' every public scene introductory to, and at the time of his execution.
'Tis somewhat remarkable, tha this murder was committed by Cannicott on his wife, on the evening of the very next day that Girle was executed for the murder of Thomas Roberts. This shews how soon publick examples are forgot, when irregularity and self-will only direct the man.
At the Place of EXECUTION.
ON Monday the 19th of July, John Girle; and on Monday the 20th of September, William Cannicott, were drawn to Tyburn in a cart. Each had the appearance of penitence there; and execution being done upon them, their bodies were both brought to Surgeon's Hall in the Old Bailey, pursuant to the last act of parliament, intended to prevent murder.
This is all the Account given by me,
Written by Himself, while Confined in Newgate.
In Order to prevent the Publick from being imposed on by false and spurious Accounts, both of me and the unfortunate Occasion of my Suffering, as well as the Motives that urged me on to commit the atrocious Crime, I have delivered with my own Hand Writing, a just Account thereof; in which I have justly and truly informed the Publick of the whole Progress of that sad and wicked Transaction, from the Beginning to its final and fatal Catostrophe, which no other Person could do: And that, at my own Request, I desire it may be published the Morning succeeding my unhappy End, by Mrs. Judith Walker, the Publisher , at the Golden Key in Fleet-Lane, declaring most solemnly, as I must soon answer the contrary, at the great Judgment Seat of Almighty God, before whom I must soon appear, that I have delivered no other Account to any Person whatever to be published.
[Price Three Pence.]
AS I promised to write an Account of myself, from my Youth up, I am willing to attempt it, but fear it will be very imperfect; I can't properly call it my Life, for then my Birth and Parentage would be expected, and that is what I chse to conceal, because I would not have my Relations reflected upon when I am gone. Therefore I will only say, that I was born in Somersetshire; at seven Years old I went to a distant Relation of my Mother's, who indulged me very much, as a Child that he respected for my Parents Sake; and when he died, which was in three Years after I went to him, he left me ten Pounds, which I was to receive with the Interest when at Age.
I continued with Anthony Everet, who succeeded to the Estate, and in two Years Time he died also. Than I went to his Brother in Bridgwater, where I lived till I was thirteen; he would have learnt me to write, &c. and have made me his Clerk , but I being young and foolish, thought it a much finer Thing to be a Footman , so went and hired myself to Dr. Allen, with whom I came to London, and stay'd almost four Years, then left him because I would not go into the Country again. I then went to live with Mr. Blackstone, an Apothecary in Newgate Market, but did not stay long before I hired myself to Mrs. Harvey, in East Street, Red Lion Square. When I came of Age, I left her to go into the Country to receive the Legacy left me by my Relation; and after allowing myself a small Time for Pleasure there, I came to Town again, and hired myself to Mr. Cony, in Gloucester Street; while I was there I was married to Dorothy Tamlyn, who had lived fellow Servant with me at Mrs. Harvey's. 'Tis needless to say what induced me to marry her, for I was young, not Two-and-twenty, and perhaps fond of being thought Man enough to have a Wife; besides, that is a Time of Life when most Men fancy themselves in Love with any Person that is the least agreeable; but I have since found to my Cost another Person much more so. Well, let it be what it would that induced me; I can assure the Publick it was not her Money, for that did not amount to thirty Pounds, and that I never desired to see one Penny of, nor did I ever see it, but gave her all I had too, and never had any Account of it. Whoever says that I had Six Hundred Pounds with her, says what is false, for I here declare, that I believed her to have no more than what I before mentioned; however, I used her as well as tho' she had had ever so much; for altho' I say it, no Man ever could behave better to a Woman than I did to her for many Years, and when I began to slight her, it was not without some Reason; let all Wives take Care for her Sake not to give the first Provocation to their Husbands, especially to those that are so rash and passionate as she knew I was; for when a Flame is once kindled, it may perhaps be too soon out of the Power of a Wife to quench it, and out of a Husband's Power to recal his Reason when it is most wanting; but no more of this at present, till I have gone further with my Story.
As soon as we were married I set her up in a little Haberdasher's Shop in Boswell Court, where she lived ten or twelve Years; I soon left Mr. Cony, and went to live with Mr. Tuckfield in Red Lion Square: I was upper Servant to Mr. Tuckfield till he died, and then to his Son till after he was married, and in the Country; I left him and went to live with Captain Limeburner, in Ormond Street, and from thence to Mrs. Wood, Widow of Dr. Wood, in the Commons; from thence to Councellor Sewell, in Serjeant's Inn, Fleet Street; and then to Admiral Matthews. My Wife now gave up the Shop in Boswell Court, and I took a House in East Street for her, and furnished it for Lodgers, which took all the Money I had, and when Admiral Matthews died, I went to live a little while with Mr. Banks, and then with a Gentleman in Henrietta Street, Cavendish Square, where I must stop a while to shew what begun the Cause of my present Misfortunes: At this Time I was in a Manner parted from my Wife, not but I continued to give her my Money the same as usual, but as she had provoked me to a high Degree, in selling two Suits of my best Clothes, that fitted me, without my Knowledge, and when I wanted them, and found they were sold, I was in so great a Passion, that I swore I would never come Home to stay any more.
So when I was out of Place, before I went to this Place, I took a Room to lodge in, at a distant Part of the Town, which made me pass the better for a single Man, as I found the Gentleman would not hire a married one, if he knew it, which Scruple of the Gentlemen refusing a married Man to serve them, is in great Part the Cause of many Misfortunes that happen to People in that State of Life, and I look upon it as the sole Cause of their being unhappy, at least where the Man and his Wife are by that Means at a Distance from each other; for might a Man always freely own that he was married, it would certainly hinder the Growth of lawless Passion, before it came to such a Height as mine did; for I think a virtuous Woman would be ready to say to any Importunities of that Kind, You are married, but the poor Girl, that was the young Lady's Maid, in listening to my Addresses, was innocent, for she believed me single, and for that Reason cannot be blamed, nor did I at first design more than to pass an agreeable Hour or two in her Company, which is a common Thing amongst our Sex when we are single, to divert a leisure Hour or two in the Company of an agreeable Girl. But oh, let those Men think, whose Practice 'tis to do so, what a cruel Thing it is to engage the Affections of a young innocent Girl without designing a Return.
This was in Part my Case; I felt a secret Pleasure in conversing with and engaging her Regard to me; without Design to harm her, more than to see her Love me; but oh, how much and how soon did I smart for this; too soon I found that I loved her more than common; for I cou'd not bear to hear any one speak ill or slightly of her; for the Servants, being a very ignorant Set of People, envied her much, because she, in many Points of Learning, knew more than they. I with Pleasure saw her Knowledge superior to the rest, and always took her Part, and praised her, for which they hated both her and me, and used us ill on that Account; nor was she the less improved, with being freely conversant with her good and amiable Lady, whom I always heard her speak exceeding well of. At last our Master himself began to cast an Eye of Regard upon her; I soon perceived it, for Love has quick Eyes; not that I had any Thing to fear from him, for I knew she was Proof against him. But I really was afraid of a young Man, that I thought made Love to her; I cou'd not bear to see her in his Company, I quarrell'd with him, and set her against him, and made Love to her myself in good Earnest, resolved to gain her, let the Consequence be what it wou'd, for I thought I was not able to live without her. Such is the Force of Love, without Reason for its Guide. I never knew what Love was before,
in Comparison of what I now felt; and as I loved her to a great Degree, I cou'd not bear to see her uneasy. I carefully concealed every Thing from her, that I thought wou'd make her so; I seemed to let her know every Thing relating to my Affairs, and when any Rumour of my being married came to her Ears, I soothed and told her, how impossible it was that I shou'd be so: I left nothing unsaid to make her believe the contrary; let no one blame her for believing me, for the World may well think I spared no Pains to persuade her to believe me; and I well know it was the Goodness of her own Heart, that made her confide in my Words; it was a Rule with her to put the most favourable Construction on every Thing; and as she had no Design of deceiving herself, how cou'd she suspect another; especially the only Man she loved and wished to find true. Well, when our Marriage was concluded upon, I left that Service, and hired myself to the Earl of Darnley, and the third Day of June, 1754, we were married at Marybone, and the same Day I went to his Lordship's Place. I had the Satisfaction to find, that my dear Nanny was exceeding happy with me; she staid a Twelvemonth longer with her Lady after we were married, and might, perhaps, have been there yet, had not her Master took it in his Head to follow her more closely; tho' she told him she was married to me, yet that did not hinder him from still pursuing; so I desired her to give Warning; after which she staid five Months to oblige her Lady, to go with her to Bath, in which Time they suited themselves with a Maid, and when they came to London her Master was ready to turn her out of Doors, and wou'd hardly let the poor Soul stay to put her Clothes together. I took a Lodging for her as near me as I cou'd, that I might spend every Moment I cou'd spare with her, which I did, for I sincerely loved her, and was so happy in her Company, that at Times I scarce remembred that I had a Wife before; her excessive Fondness for me had rather encreased than diminished mine for her; in short, no two Persons that ever were married cou'd be happier than we were; the Reflection of which gives me so much Pleasure, that I cou'd dwell for ever on the Subject; but no more; a painful Thought darts quick through my Heart, and tells me, I have lost that Happiness for ever here; but oh, if there is such a Thing as being conversant in Heaven, with those we have loved here (as I hope there is) for I think, happy as that refined State is, our Happiness will have some Addition from the Company of a known Friend.
At the Time of the Family's going into the Country, I sent the beloved of my Heart into Kent to her Brother, where I knew she wou'd be safe, and was obliged to content myself with sending and receiving Letters from her, and out of the Way of hearing any Thing of my Wife; for before that Time Mrs. Gore's Maid had possessed herself, that I had a Mind to make Love to her, which, God knows my Heart, I had no Intention to do; therefore it was nothing but her own Fancy, for my Love was too well fixed in my dear Nanny's Breast ever to be removed. Some Acquaintance of Mrs. Morgan's, Mrs. Gore's Maid, happened to know my first Wife, and knew too that there was some Difference betwixt us, so contrived, unknown to me, to bring her into the House as a Friend of theirs; invited me to drink Tea, and, to my great Surprise, I found her there. You may think this Meeting was not very agreeable, for I was always very passionate, to my great Loss; and she, instead of soothing me, took Occasion to upbraid me, which was very aggravating: Bad as I had already acted, there was ten Times worse made of it, as my courting so many Girls, and wanting to marry them, and many more false Accusations, which to hear repeated did but enrage me more.
During the Time we were in the Country at Cobham-Hall, I asked Leave of my Lord for a few Days, to take a Tour in the Country and see some Friends, which he gave me Leave to do; now the Coachman to my Lord knew me at Councellor Sewell's, and knew my Wife too, and he being very busy, wrote her Word, that, instead of the Country, he
suspected that I was come to Town, and wanted to know if I had been to see her; which set her on writing to and teazing me, to know where I had been, which she nor the Coachman ever did know, nor need I now tell the Publick where I was, only I will say, that I was really in the Country, and not in Town.
When the Family came to Town again, I longed to see Nanny, and called her out of Kent from her Brother's; I wou'd have taken her a Lodging at Mrs. Williams's, where she lodged before, but I found that Mrs. Hobson, the Coachman's Wife, had either lodged or come acquainted there, and by that Means had come to the Knowledge of my second Marriage, and had taken Care to let my first Wife know it; so I took her a Lodging in Chapel-Street, and was afraid least any Thing shou'd come to her Ears, and make her uneasy. I desired her not to go near that House, and she did not; but the old canting Mrs. Williams saw her one Day, and followed her Home to see where she lodged, and by her Means Hobson and his Wife let my Wife know where to find her: so when she had been with her, and told her the Truth, besides a great many imaginary Things, then may I say that all my Happiness was ended. Oh, how shall I describe the first Interview with my dear, my tender Nanny. After she knew I had deceived her, she reproached me, 'tis true, but in the mildest Terms, and with so much Tenderness, as shewed more Love than Anger; her soft Complaints and excessive Grief cut me to the Heart; I knew not what to say, or how to sooth her; fly from her I cou'd not, as she wou'd have had me, nor cou'd I bear the Thoughts of her leaving me. I begged of her not to expose me to her Friends; she told me, she had no such Design; but wou'd leave me and go into Place; so at last I promised to enquire for one, which made her seem a little easier in her Mind. I was afraid she wou'd have left me, and not have told me where she was gone; therefore I begged of her every Day not to hide herself from me, for if she did, the Consequence wou'd be fatal, as I cou'd not live without seeing or hearing from her.
I believe the Fear of my doing myself a Mischief kept her from absconding; but I never saw her without her trying every Argument to persuade me not to come near her, telling me how great a Sin it was, and, if continued, wou'd involve us both in utter Ruin. Nor did she, in all she said, ever blame my first Wife, but took her Part, and kept my Hand back from distressing her. I can't help reflecting a little on the Conduct of my two Wives; the first had taken Care to spend every Farthing of Money that I had worked hard for, from my Youth up (till within these two Years last past, that I kept part of my Wages from her) without ever giving me any Account of what became of it; and I had several very good Places, and was very little out; I shou'd have been worth many Hundred Pounds, if I had had no Wife to have spent it; on the contrary, my Nanny chose to work or do any Thing, rather than spend too much of my Money. Again, the first Wife exposed me, and said the worst of Things of me, much worse than I deserved from her; she strove to set a bad Character on me every where; and Nanny's Study was, how to hide my Faults, when she knew them; for she loved me, and wanted every Body to think well of me. Again, in regard to themselves, the first Wife said very bitter Things of Nanny, which I knew very well she did not deserve; whereas Nanny said all she could to reconcile me to her, and would (I believe) have been glad if she could have done it. Oh, how happy should I have been had I staid without a Wife till I knew my dear Nanny: But why do I think on it? Is it not my own Folly that has worked my Destruction, and not the Good or Evil of either? I now see I ought to have behaved well to the one, how great soever the Provocation had been, and not have permitted my unbounded Love to overcome my Reason, to ruin the other.
In enquiring for a Place for my dear Nanny, I had bad Success; I can't say I was
sorry, for I did not want her to leave me, if I could possibly help it. Her Success was as bad as mine; for she could not get a Place, tho' she registered and advertized with the latter, and she would have had one, but her last Master hindered her by writing Word, that she was married, which he made an Excuse for his parting with her, for fear she should disclose the real Reason of her giving Warning; and his Pride wou'd not let him own, that any Servant had ever given him or his Daughter Warning. She offered to go Abroad, but I was greatly against it, and begged of her, with Tears, not to do it. At last she found it too late to go to Place, but was determined to go into the Country to her Friends, as soon as I could give her Money to carry her there. Mean while my first Wife sent her Threatening Letters, and teazed her very much, and made the poor Soul very uneasy. As she had moved from her first Lodgings in Chapel-Street to one in Poland Street, my first Wife would not have found her, had it not been for an ungenerous young Man, who pretended great Friendship for Nanny and me, who told her where she was; and at last she went in Person to the House where Nanny lodged, and told the whole Thing to all the People in the House. I could not prevail on my dear Nanny to leave that Lodging, because she said, that was the Time for us to part, except I was determined to make her for ever miserable. At last, with great Intreaties, I prevailed on her to meet me early in a Morning, but as our Meetings were chiefly in the Street, we had no great Pleasure in them; for the short Time we had the Conversation was nothing but Complaints on each Side, she wanting not to see me at all, and I wanting to see her oftner.
In all this Time the Coachman Hobson, and his Wife, were imployed in carying Stories backward and forwards to my Wife, telling her, that I had received my Wages and had Money; therefore she sent to me and teazed my Heart out for some; threatening, if I would not give her any, that she would expose me to all the World, and that she would get my Lord informed of my having two Wives, and in short, that she would hang me for it; and as she had got the Register of my Marriage with Nanny, I thought she could do it, without Nanny's appearing against me; these Things brought on the fatal Event; for, as I have said before, how passionate I always was, perhaps my Consciousness of having done such a wrong Thing made me much more so.
As my Affairs were known in the Neighbourhood, I did not care to go to my own House, which made me desire her to meet me, and the Saturday before the Tuesday I happened to meet her, with one or two more, and desired her to come on Tuesday Evening to the Red Lyon in Berkley Square. On Sunday I got a very bad Fall down the Steps at the Hall Door, which Fall hurt me so much, that my Lord did not take me with him on his three Days Pleasure, otherwise I should have been out, that fatal Day, along with him, and perhaps the Thing had never happened.
I met Nanny on Monday Morning, and she, seeing me so much hurt, desired me not to come to meet her again till I was well, but I desired her to meet me on Wednesday Morning. I remembered the Appointment with my first Wife on Tuesday, and as I went on some Errand to one of my Lord's Tradesmen, I made it in my Way to come on by Southampton Row, and sent a Boy, that I lighted on by Chance, to tell her to meet me there, which she did, and we took a Walk into the Fields; it was indifferent to me where, for, God knows my Heart, I had no Scheme in my Head, as Justice Fielding thinks I had, nor had I any Thought or Design to hurt her in any Shape; we walked along to Tottenham Court, and went into the Adam and Eve, where we had some Bread and Cheese and Home-brew'd Beer; then she proposed for us to go along the New Road almost to Maryle-bone Town, and to come round, and go into the Harp Alehouse to sit a little. When we had got a little past the House, we met
several Hay-makers, one of which said, if we did not turn back to the House, we shou'd be very wet, for it was going to rain very hard; so we run back, but before we reach'd the House it rain'd hard. When we got in, we went up Stairs, and call'd for Six-pennyworth of Rum and Water; all this Time we had been very sociable and good natured, but while we were drinking our Rum and Water, and waiting for the Weather to clear up, she begun to ask me for Money; I told her, I had none, which was the Truth; but she begun to threaten me, and tell me, she wou'd do me all the Ill in her Power, for she was informed that I had received my Bill and Wages of my Lord, and that my Lord knew that I had two Wives, and she hoped soon to do for me. I insisted upon knowing who it was that told her all these Stories; if she would not tell me, I would never give her any Money, nor never see her more. At last she told me, it was Hobson the Coachman, who had been with her the Day before, and that she wou'd believe him before me, for I was not to be believed. Now the Coachman had often taken Occasion to insult me, and tell me I was saucy and proud, now I was grown rich, but I had better pay where it was due; and he had actually told my Lord, that I had two Wives; but my Lord bid him hold his Tongue, and wou'd not hear him. In short, she said every Thing that she cou'd think of to vex and aggravate me, and I knowing that great Part of it was Stories, cou'd not bear it from a Woman which I no longer had any Regard for; but I looked on her as the Bane of all my Happiness, and that she had been so many Years, no wonder that I cou'd not curb my very unruly Passion, in the midst of which we left the House, and as we were going down Stairs I saw a Piece of Cord lie, I took it up, and put it in my Pocket, and as we went homewards it thundered and lightened much; she desired me to let down my Hat, to keep the Lightning from my Eyes; I refused it once, but the second Time I bid her be going on 'till I did it; in which Time I prepared the Cord, and going behind her put it over her Head; she struggled much, and I thought she wou'd get the better of me; but at last I thought of my Scissars, with which I finished what I had begun. As soon as it was done, my Passion abated; I was amazed to find myself such a Wretch; I could hardly believe my Eyes, nor think that my Hands had done it. Think, oh Reader, think if thou can'st, what I at that Instant felt; Fear, Grief, Rage and Despair, by Turns distracted me; I was unable to support the Thoughts which crowded in upon my Soul any longer, so fell down senseless, and there lay for some Time, nor can I tell how long. When I came to myself, I began to think how I might hide the horrid Deed, I went back to her and stript her, and took the Clothes along with me, and flung them some into one Place, and some into another; nor could I remember, when I came to be examined, where I had put them all; and no Wonder, for the Thunder and Lightening, added to my own distracted Mind, might well make me forget, for I scarce knew what I did; it was God's Mercy alone that preserved me from laying violent Hands on myself; surely I was preserved to clear the Innocent. I likewise see God's great Goodness to myself, in allowing me Time to repent; it makes me hope, that I have not sinned past all Forgiveness.
I got home to my Lord's about Ten o'Clock, very wet; I went to Bed, and composed myself pretty well before Morning to meet Nanny, which I did, and begged of her to meet me in the Afternoon to take a Walk; she met me in Brook-Street, and we walked to the White Hart beyond Bloody Bridge; in all this Time I told her nothing of what I had done the Day before; for I knew too well it was a Deed so contrary to her Inclination, that she would have hated me for it; and I loved her too well to tell her any Thing that I could help, to forfeit her Esteem for me. When I went home in the Evening, the Servants told me that Justice Fielding had sent there for me; and they persuaded me, if I was Guilty, not to come in; but I pleaded innocent, and went in; and they
denied me when Justice Welch came a second Time.
I slept but little that Night, and in the Morning took the Porter with me, and went to Mr. Barnes, the High Constable, in order, as I said, to clear myself.
They had a Direction to my Nanny, and I found were going to fetch her; so I desired Mr. Barnes to go for her, which he did; but little did I think they would have been so cruel as to confine her, for I was certain she was innocent. The first Day of Examination I confessed nothing, but when I heard that my dear Nanny was confined, I was ready to tear myself in Pieces, and soon resolved to confess every Thing, let what would be the Consequence, rather than my dear innocent Nanny should suffer on my Account. Accordingly, the next Day, when examined, I confessed and cleared her. We were ordered to take Leave there, and to see each other no more. Altho' she was set at Liberty, yet I can't help reflecting a little how cruel and uncharitable the Justices were, how loath to let Innocence escape; for after she was set at Liberty, they wanted to fetch her up again twice; the Stays that belonged to my Wife, I had flung in a different Place from the rest of her Clothes, and they were not found till I told where they were, for they suspected that Nanny had got them to wear, and were going to fetch her up again, only I overheard them Whisper it, and prevented them, by telling where they were. The next was the Ring and Buckles, which they thought I had given her, but I had sold them to a Silversmith in Bond Street, and threw the Money into the Vault at my Lord's. How lucky it was that I did not throw the Ring and Buckles there, instead of the Money; for if I had, my poor dear Nanny would have been punished for them. But I plainly see there is a Providence which preserves the Innocent, and punishes only the Guilty.
O Lord, teach me not to repine at thy Judgment upon me, for I well deserve it; but rather let me give thee hearty Thanks, O God, that thou art pleased to make me sensible of my Faults, while there is yet Time to repent, and the Gates of Mercy are not shut upon me for ever.
I now see, O Lord, what great Reason I have to be humble for my Sins, and thankful for thy great Mercies to me, who least of all deserve them.
I would give a few Words to the Publick, for a Caution against the like Crimes, which I have been guilty of; but I fear it will be to no Purpose; for how many Men are there at this Time who have two Wives, and may perhaps, like me, be led on to compleat the Sins which I have done; for tho' my Wife provoked me greatly, yet I don't think her Faults any Excuse for my taking away her Life, nor can my Passion excuse my Rashness. I am content to pay my Life down as a Forfeit due for taking away her's; but what Return can I make my second Wife for deceiving her in so gross a Manner; poor injured Girl, who must live to be censured by the uncharitable World, and hear their unjust Reproaches, when 'tis I only that deserve them; for had I followed her Advice, after she knew I had another Wife, I had not been the Wretch I am.
Her staying with me after she knew the Truth, was from a different Motive than what the World may think; it was to persuade me to be good, and to contrive a Way for us to be really parted, and not seem so, that her Friends might not come upon me. But I baffled all her Schemes, by not taking her Advice, for indeed I could take none that tended towards my never seeing her.
But, alas, I see my Error, now it is too late. I now can only pray for her, and wish her well; and expect my approaching End with Resignation and Patience.
And God grant that my Penitence may be equal to my Sins; it shall be my constant Endeavour to make it so, and recommend my Soul to the Mercy of God, through the Merits of my Saviour, on whom alone I depend for Salvation, for he is able, and I hope willing, to save the now unhappy
ON the unhappy Mr. Cannicott's pleading Guilty, and his being asked by the Court, why Judgment of Death should not be passed on him, he delivered the following Paper into Court, which was read.
I Am the unhappy Perpetrator of that most horrid and unparallel'd Crime of which I stand charged; and as I have nothing to sue for but the Mercy of God to my poor Soul, will not give this Honourable Court any farther Trouble; but as a Penitent, sensible of my horrid Guilt, I earnestly beg the Prayers of all good Christians, that God, thro' his infinite Mercy, and thro' the Intercession of our blessed Saviour and Redeemer Jesus Christ, may blot out this Stain of shedding innocent Blood: And as the Motives which induced me to do the wicked Act will not appear here, as I do now acknowledge my Guilt, in order that the Publick may be fully satisfyed of the same, I have delivered under my own Hand Writing, a just and full Account of the whole Progress of that sad and fatal Transaction, from the Beginning to its final and fatal End, to be published by Mrs. Walker, the Publisher, the Morning after I am no more in this transitory World, in Hopes the same will be a Warning to all others to avoid the Steps that led me to it. And God, of his infinite Mercy, I hope will have Mercy on me.
THE unfortunate Mr. Cannicott was in the 42d Year of his Age; and though he had been married near twenty Years to his first Wife, for whose Murder he died, and two Years to the unfortunate young Woman that survives, he never had any Children by either; and who, during the whole Time of his Confinement, behaved penitent, as one sensible of his wicked past Life. The Morning of his Execution he was brought out of Newgate about Eight o'Clock, from whence to the Tree he took on very much, wringing his Hands and shedding a great many Tears. At the Place of Execution the Minister prayed with him for some Time, when on his leaving him, he knelt down in the Cart, and continued in Prayer by himself for about a Quarter of an Hour, in a little Book, which he read in from Newgate to Tyburn; where he concluded with the following Prayer.
'O Lord I know that thou will not be 'mocked, nor accept of any Thing that is 'not perfectly sincere. O Lord when I consider this, Fearfulness and Trembling 'comes upon me, and an horrible Dread 'overwhelms me, my Flesh trembles for 'fear of thee, and my Heart is wounded 'within me; but, O Lord, one Deep calleth 'for another, the Depth of my Mercy upon 'the Depth of thy Mercy; Lord save me or 'I perish eternally. Deliver me, I beseech 'thee, from the Wages of my Sins, thy 'Wrath and everlasting Damnation, in the 'Time of my Tribulation, in the Hour of 'Death, and the Day of Judgment. Take 'away the Sting of Death, the Guilt of my 'Sins, and then, tho' I walk thro' the Valley of the Shadow of Death, I will fear no 'Evil. I will lay me down in Peace; and Lord, 'when I awake up, let me be satisfied with 'thy Presence in thy Glory. Grant this, 'merciful God, for his Sake, who is both 'the Redeemer and Mediator of Sinners, 'even Jesus Christ. Amen.
O God, make Haste to save me;
O Lord, make Haste to help me;
Glory be to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Ghost.
As it was in the Beginning, is now, and ever shall be, World without End. Amen.
After he had hung about three Quarters of an Hour, his Body was cut down, and put into a Coach, and carried to Surgeons Hall to be anatomised.
For the Good of the PUBLICK, Notice is hereby given
TO Persons of both Sexes afflicted with the Venereal Disease, or an obstinate and inveterate Gleet, or draining Weakness of Reins or Kidneys, whether occasioned by Venereal Complaints or other Causes; that on Friday the 31st of October last, his Majesty's Royal Letters Patent passed the great Seal of England to ROBERT WALKER, the Inventor and Proprietor of that most noble and compendious Medicine, called by him GENUINE JESUITS DROPS, which said PATENT JESUITS DROPS are the most certain, pleasant, safe, cheap, effectual, and immediate Cure in the World for the several Disorders abovementioned; is also a great Strengthner and Purifier of the Blood in all Scorbutic Humours, and, by its wounderful Efficacy, has rendered Health and Strength to a very great Number of Persons of both Saxes, who have been afflicted with decayed and broken Constitutions. It has no Mercurials in its Composition, and neither Purges nor Vomits, but carries the Disorders clean off by Urine, (the Dose only fifteen Drops in a little white Wine or Water, or on a Lump of Sugar) and is an excellent Remedy for Travellers and Persons going to Sea, as they may be taken so secret, that even a Bedfellow cannot make any Discovery, and at any Time, in any Season or Climate, without Alteration of Diet, or Hinderance of Business; and eradicates, Root and Branch, all the poisonous Symptoms of those loathsome Distempers, without the least Distaste to the Palate, Disorder of Body, or Confinement whatever, and absolutely answers all the Ends that can be expected by Salivation, without going through that dangerous Operation. Bottles proportionable, 2 s. 6 d.
To be had, by the Patentee's special Appointment, at his Warehouse the Bible and Crown in Fleet-Lane, near the Sessions-House-Gate, Old Baily; Mr. Mackinder's, Peruke Maker, in King's-Street, St. James's Square; Mrs. Printup, Broker in Ratcliff Highway, opposite Well-close Square; Mr. Sanders, a Chandler's Shop in Frying-Pan Alley, opposite St. Thomas's Hospital, Southwark; and Mr. Ozley, at the Green and Gold Cannister, between Nightingale Lane and Salt-Petre Bank, East Smithfield; and no where else in London.
His Majesty, in order that his Subjects in Scotland should likewise have the Benefit of so noble and efficacious a Medicine, according to its genuine Preparation, was graciously pleased on the 9th of July last, to grant his ROYAL LETTERS PATENT, under the Seal of that Kingdom, for fourteen Years, to the said ROBERT WALKER; not only to secure the Property of so valuable a RECIPE to the Patentee, but to prevent any further Imposition on the Publick, by any spurious Medicine, falsly pretending to the same Virtue and Qualities, to the Prejudice of the Healths and Constitutions, as well as endangering the Lives of his Subjects; and Prosecutions are commenced against some Persons for vending a Sort of Medicine, called True and Original Jesuits Drops, and substituting the same for this valuable Medicine; therefore that you may be sure you have the Right, and for your Healths Sake, as well as Certainty of the Cure, be careful to ask for WALKER's PATENT JESUITS DROPS.
They will be sent sealed up, so secret as not to be known what they are, to any Part of England (with full Instructions for the Patient to know his own Case, and to obtain a certain Cure) on Receipt of a Letter (allowing for Postage and Porterage) directed to R. WALKER, at the Bible and Crown, Fleet Lane.