General Books publication date: 2009 Original publication date: 1903 Original Publisher: Duckworth Subjects: Popish Plot, 1678 Great Britain Biography
Book may have numerous typos, missing text, images, or index. Purchasers can download a free scanned copy of the original book (without typos) from the publisher. 1903. Excerpt: ... CHAPTER III TRIALS FOR THE PLOT Such was the state of society and the procedure of the English courts when Edward Coleman was brought to the bar of the Court of King's Bench on November 27, 1678 to be tried on the charge of high treason. The trial was a test case. In point of importance it was chief among the series of trials for treason which arose from the Plot, for all the others which followed to some extent depended from this. If Coleman had been acquitted, there could have been no more to come. His letters formed, as they still form, the weightiest part of the evidence against the Roman Catholic intriguers,1 and had they not secured his conviction, the Jesuits, Mr. Langhorn, Lord Stafford, and Archbishop Plunket would have gone unconvicted also. By his condemnation the way was opened by which they were sent to the scaffold, the innocent and the guilty alike, without favour or discrimination. In the words of Sir George Jeffreys, Recorder of London, the indictment set forth "that the said Edward Coleman, endeavouring to subvert the Protestant religion and to change and alter the same, and likewise to stir up rebellion and sedition amongst the king's liege people and also to kill the king," did hold certain correspondence 1 That this was recognised at the time is evident from the attention which they received in the debates in the Commons on the Duke of York. That on the Lords' Provision in the Popery bill exempting the duke was carried on amid cries of "Coleman's letters Coleman's letters “ 4 Pari. Hist. 1044. And see the whole of the Debate on a Motion for Removing the Duke of York, where they had the greatest weight. Ibid. 1026-1034. with ”M. la Chaise, then servant and confessor to the French king." 1 In point of fact the indictment lays by far the greater stress on the form...
, an awardwinning biographer, is acclaimed as one of Britain's leading historical writers. A prestigious annual biography prize has recently been named after him in the U.S.A.