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fit,” he said, “ to be discoursed with by men.” Then I was put into a tower, where the smoke of the other prisoners came up so thick, that it stood as dew upon the walls, and sometimes it was so thick that I could hardly see the candle when it burned; and I being locked under three locks, the under-jailer, when the smoke was great, would hardly be persuaded to come up to unlock one of the uppermost doors, for fear of the smoke, so that I was almost smothered. Besides, it rained in upon my bed, and many times, when I went to stop out the rain in the cold winter season, my shirt was wet through with the rain that came in upon me, while I was labouring to stop it out. And the place being high and open to the wind, sometimes as fast as I stopped it, the wind blew it out again. In this manner did I lie, all that long cold winter, till the next assize; in which time I was so starved with cold and rain, that my body was greatly swelled, and my limbs much benumbed. • The assize began on the 16th day of the month called March, 1664--5. The same Judges, Twisden and Turner, coming that circuit again, Judge Twisden sat this time on the crown-bench, and before him I was brought. I had informed myself of the errors in this indictment also. For though at the assize before, Judge Turner had said to the officers in court, “Pray see that all the oath be in the indictment, and that the word, subject, be in, and that the day of the month and the year of the king be put in right; for it is a shame that so many errors should be seen and found in the faco of the country;" yet there were many errors, and those great ones, in this indictment, as well as in the former. Surely the hand of the Lord was in it, to confound their mischievous work against me, and to blind them therein; insomuch, that although after the indictment was drawn at the former assize, the judge examined it himself and tried it with the clerks, yet the word, subject, was left out of this indictment also, the day of the month was put in wrong, and several material words of the oath were left out; yet they went on confidently against me, thinking all was safe and well. When I was set to the bar, and the jury called over to be sworn, the clerk asked me, first, “whether I had any objection to make against any of the jury?” I told him, “I knew none of them.” Then, having sworn the jury, they swore three of the officers of the court to prove “that the oath was tendered to me at the last assizes, according to the indictment.” “Come, come," said the judge, “it was not done in a corner." Then he asked me, “what I had said to it, or whether I had taken the oath at the last assize?” I told him, what I had said, viz., “that the book they gave me to swear on, says, 'swear not at all;' » and I repeated more of what I had formerly said to them, as it now came to my remembrance. Whereupon the judge said, “I will not dispute with you, but in point of law." “Then,” said I, “I have something to speak to the jury concerning the indictment.” He told me, I must not speak to the jury, but if I had anything to say, I must speak to him. Then I asked him, "whether the oath was to be tendered to the king's subjects only, or to the subjects of foreign princes ?” He replied, “to the subjects of this realm; for I will speak nothing to you," said he," but in point of law.” “Then,” said I, “look in the indictment, and thou mayest see that the word, subject, is left out
of this indictment also. And therefore seeing the oath is not to be tendered to any but the subjects of this realm, and ye have not put me in as & subject, the court is to take no notice of this indictment.” I had no sooner spoken than the judge cried, “Take him away, jailer, take him away.” So I was presently hurried away. The jailer and people looked when I should be called for again; but I was never brought to the court any more, though I had many other great errors to assign in the indictment. After I was gone, the judge asked the jury, “if they were agreed?". They said, “yes," and found for the king against me, as I was told. But I was never called to hear sentence given, nor was any given against me, that I could hear of. I understood that when they had looked more narrowly into the indictment, they saw it was not good; and the judge having sworn the officers of the court, that the oath was tendered me at the assize before, such a day, according as was set in the indictment, and that being the wrong day, I should have proved the officers of the court forsworn men again, if the judge would have suffered me to plead to the indictment; which was thought to be the reason why he hurried me away So soon. The judge had passed sentence of premunire upon Margaret Fell, before I was brought in; and it seems, when I was hurried away, they recorded me as a premunired person, though I was never brought to hear the sentence, or knew of it; which was very illegal. For they ought not only to have had me present to hear the sentence given, but also to have asked me first, "what I could say why sentence should not be given against me?" But they knew I had so much to say, that they could not give sentence, if they heard it.
While I was prisoner in Lancaster castle, there was a great noise and talk of the Turks overspreading Christendom, and great fears entered many. But one day, as I was walking in my prison chamber, “I saw the Lord's power turn against him, and that he was turning back again.” And I declared to some what the Lord had let me see, when there were such fears of his over-running Christendom; and within a month after the news came, that they had given him a defeat.
Another time, as I was walking in my chamber, with my eye to the Lord, “I saw the angel of the Lord with a glittering drawn sword stretched southward, as though the court had been all on fire." Not long after the wars broke out with Holland, the sickness broke forth, and afterwards the fire of London; so the Lord's sword was drawn indeed.
By reason of my long and close imprisonment in so bad a place, I was become very weak in body; but the Lord's power was over all, supported me through all, and enabled me to do service for him, and for his truth and people, as the place would admit. For while I was in Lancaster prison, I answered several books, as the Mass, the Common-Prayer, the Directory, and the Church-Faith ; which are the four chief religions that are got up since the apostles' days. And there being several Friends in prison at Lancaster and other prisons for not paying tithes, I was moved to give forth the following lines concerning tithes :
“In the time of the law, they that did not bring their tithes into the store-house, robbed God; then there was not meat in their house;
therefore the Lord commanded to bring them into his house, that there might be meat in the store-house, which was to fill the fatherless, stranger, and widow. But these priests, who are counterfeits, who take people's tithes now by a law, are from the beast; and if any will not pay them, they imprison them, or make them pay treble. These rob the poor, rob the fatherless; and the stranger and the widow are not filled; so their cry is gone up to heaven against these. Many are made almost beggars by these oppressing priests, their cattle and corn being taken away, and they cast into prison. Others are sued at law by them, and have treble damage taken from them; yet such priests are cried up to be ministers of the gospel. Though when the unchangeable priest was come, the priesthood that was changeable, was denied, as we now deny these. But if any be moved now to cry against them, they are stocked, beat, or imprisoned. Many are now in prison at Lancaster, and in other places, by a national law; the like whereof was never done by the law of God, which was delivered to Moses. For we do not read, that under Moses's law any suffered imprisonment, or spoiling of their goods for not paying tithes, or had to pay treble damage. Surely, surely, the cry for vengeance will be heard, which arises from the oppressed souls that lie under the altar. There are many prisoners at Kendal, because they cannot pay tithes, as Captain Ward, Thomas Robertson,* and the widow Garland, who has many small children; these suffer because they cannot pay tithes. Others are in Kendal prison, who were moved of the Lord to speak to the priests, one to go in sackcloth, and with ashes upon her head. Others have been moved to go in sackcloth, as a lamentation for the miserable estate of this nation, seeing so much crying up of the preaching of the gospel, and yet so much strife, debate, and oaths, and dissension among people. But where the gospel is received indeed, strife and contention are ended, and oppression is taken off. O! the land mourns, because of the oppression of those called ministers! And though the cry of the oppressed hath not entered into the ears of the magistrates; yet is the cry of the poor, oppressed people of God, entered into the ears of the Lord of Sabaoth, who now will be avenged of all his adversaries. You unjust lawgivers, and unjust judges, to that in all your consciences I speak, to be cleared, when ye are judged by the just Judge of heaven and earth ; whose terror is gone forth against all the ungodly, and all the oppressors of God's people whatsoever, whether ye will hear or forbear.”
. After the assize, Colonel Kirby and some other justices were very uneasy with my being at Lancaster; for I had galled them sore at my trials there, and they laboured much to get me removed to some remote place. Colonel Kirby threatened I should be sent far enough, and sometimes said,
* Of Thomas Robertson not much is known, but he appears to have been a faithful labourer in his day. Ambrose Rigge, in the Account of his Life, states, “A fellowlabourer was prepared for me, which was Thomas Robertson of Westmorland; who was made willing to leave his dear wife and tender babes, to go with me into the Lord's harvest." In Letters, Sc., of Early Friends, p. 226, is a letter from Thomas Robertson to Margaret Fell, under date 1655.
I should be sent beyond sea. About six weeks after the assizes, they got an order from the king and council to remove me from Lancaster; and with it they brought a letter from the Earl of Anglesea, wherein was written, “that if those things were found true against me, which I was charged withal, I deserved no clemency or mercy;" yet the greatest matter they had against me was, because I could not disobey the command of Christ, and swear.
When they had prepared for my removal, the under-sheriff and the head-sheriff's man, with some bailiffs, came and fetched me out of the castle, when I was so weak with lying in that cold, wet, and smoky prison, that I could hardly go or stand. They had me into the jailer's house, where were William Kirby, a justice, and several others, and they called for wine to give me. I told them, “I would have none of their wine.” Then they cried, “Bring out the horses.” I desired them first to show me their order, or a copy of it, if they intended to remove me; but they would show me none but their swords. I told them, “there was no sentence passed upon me, nor was I premunired, that I knew of; and therefore I was not made the king's prisoner, but was the sheriff's; for they and all the coun. try knew, that I was not fully heard at the last assize, nor suffered to show the errors that were in the indictment, which were sufficient to quash it, though they had kept me from one assize to another, to the end they might try me. But they all knew, there was no sentence of premunire passed upon me; and therefore not being the king's prisoner but the sheriff's, I desired to see their order.” Instead of showing me their order, they haled me out, and lifted me upon one of the sheriff's horses. When I was on horseback in the street, the town's-people being gathered to gaze upon me, I told the officers, I had received neither Christianity, civility, nor humanity, from them. They hurried me away about fourteen miles to BENTHAM, though I was so very weak, I was hardly able to sit on horseback; and my clothes smelt so of smoke, that they were loathsome to myself. The wicked jailer, one Hunter, a young fellow, would come behind, and give the horse a lash with his whip, and make him skip and leap; so that I, being weak, had difficulty to sit him; and then he would come and look me in the face, and say, “How do you, Mr, Fox?" I told him, “it was not civil in him to do so.” The Lord cut him off soon after.
When we were come to Bentham, there met us many troopers, and a marshal; and many of the gentry of the country were come in, and abundance of people to stare at me. I being very weak and weary, desired them to let me lie down on a bed, which the soldiers permitted me; for they that brought me thither, gave their order to the marshal, and he set a guard of his soldiers upon me. When they had stayed a while, they pressed horses, and raised the bailiff of the hundred, and the constables, and others, and had me to GIGGLESWICK that night; but exceedingly weak I was. There they raised the constables with their clog-shoes, who sat drinking all the night in the room by me, so that I could not get much rest. Next day we came to a market-town, where several Friends called to see me; and Robert Widders and divers Friends came to me on the road. The next night I asked the soldiers, " whither they intended to carry me, and whither I was to be sent?” Some of them said, “beyond sea;" others said, “ to Tynemouth Castle." A great fear there was amongst them, lest some one should rescue me out of their hands; but that fear was needless. Next night we came to YORK, where the marshal put me into a great chamber, where most part of two troops came to see me. One of these troopers, an envious man, hearing that I was premunired, asked me, "what estate I had, and whether it was copyhold or free land ?” I took no notice of his question, but was moved to declare the word of life to the soldiers, and many of them were very loving. At night the Lord Frecheville (so called), who commanded these horse, came to me, and was very civil and loving. I gave him an account of my imprisonment, and declared many things to him relating to truth. They kept me at York two days, and then the marshal and four or five soldiers were sent to convey me to SCARBRO' CASTLE. Indeed these were very civil men, and carried themselves civilly and lovingly to me. On the way we baited at Malton, and they permitted Friends to come and visit me. When we were come to SCARBRO', they had me to an inn, and gave notice to the governor, who sent six soldiers to be my guard that night. Next day they conducted me into the castle, put me into a room, and set a sentry on me. Being very weak and subject to fainting, they let me go out sometimes into the air with the sentry. They soon removed me out of this room, and put me into an open one, where the rain came in; and smoked exceedingly, which was very offensive to me. One day the governor, Sir John Crossland, came to see me, and brought with him Sir Francis Cobb. I desired the governor to go into my room, and see what a place I had. I had got a little fire made in it, and it was so filled with smoke, that when they were in, they could hardly find their way out again ; and he being a Papist, I told him, that was his Purgatory which they had put me into. I was forced to lay out about fifty shillings to stop out the rain, and keep the room from smoking so much. When I had been at that charge, and made it somewhat tolerable, they removed me into a worse room, where I had neither chimney nor firehearth. This being to the sea-side and lying much open, the wind drove in the rain forcibly, so that the water came over my bed, and ran about the room, that I was fain to skim it up with a platter. And when my clothes were wet, I had no fire to dry them; so that my body was benumbed with cold, and my fingers swelled, that one was grown as big as two. Though I was at some charge in this room also, I could not keep out the wind and rain. Besides they would suffer few Friends to come to me, and many times not any, no, not so much as to bring me a little food; but I was forced for the first quarter to hire one of another society to bring me neces. saries. Sometimes the soldiers would take it from her, and she would scufile with them for it. Afterwards I hired a soldier to fetch me water and bread, and something to make a fire of, when I was in a room where a fire could be made. Commonly a threepenny loaf served me three weeks, and sometimes longer, and most of my drink was water with wormwood steeped or bruised in it. One time when the weather was very sharp, and I had taken great cold, I got a little elecampane beer, and I heard one of the soldiers say to the other, that they would play me a trick, for they