THE HUMBLE ADDRESSE AND Remonstrance OF RICHARD DAWSON Gentleman, now Prisoner in the FLEET.

To the Right Honourable the Lords & Commons in Parliament Assembled, With all possible Submission, Representing the sad Oppressures under which he groans, his Estate being pluckt away from him by Injustice, Perjury, and Subornation thereto, Forgery, Counterfeiting his Hand and Seal, and other Unjust, Illegal Unconscionable Grievances; By the [...] Confederacy of Roger Por­tington Gentleman, Philip Read Attorney of the Kings Bench, Edward, and Francis Luttrel, Sollicitor, and Counsellor of Law, Sir John Lenthall Knight Marshall of the Kings Bench, and others, set on, incouraged, and defended by them.

Because of the Cry of the Oppressed, and the Groans of Prisoners, I will Arise saith the Lord.

Let God Arise, and His Enemies will be Scattered.

London, Printed for the Author 1661.

Right Honorable Lords, and Worthy Gentlemen;

THE External happynesse of mankind, con­sisting in Society, of which the briole, or check, is the Law, which curbs and restrains the unruly exorbitances of unreasonable men; what can be fall more miserable in this life, than to have this remedy (by the Injustice of its Exe­cution) made worse than the disease? to find Judgement turn'd into Gall and Wormwood, as is evident in your poor Petitioners Case, who to the ruine of his Wife and Children, hath for several years found experimental proof thereof, which being his lot in those times, when our Sun of Earthly happyness was eclipsed, and only the Screetchowles of Horror and Di­straction were heard in our almost ruined Land; when Corrup­tion and Villany was the natural milk to feed our Infant Mon­ster the Commonwealth; His hope and assurance is, that the return of our Sun of Majesty, will be like unto that of him, who hath been, and is his true pattern, the Sun of Righteous­nesse, with healing under his wings, to poor, oppressed, and o­therwise despairing Prisoners, among whose number, your Petitioner humbly acknowledgeth himself.

Nor is he only prickt forward to this Addresse, by the sharpnesse and tediousnesse of his sufferings, and present distress brought upon him thereby; but is also incouraged (nay more) assured of successe, in confidence of your Honors true Gallantry, Justice and Wisdom, who your selves in these late overturning times▪ have tasted of the same cup of affliction, many of you drunk thereof deeply.

Yea, His Most Sacred Majesty, hath not escaped the same [Page 4] Lot; but (in imitation of our Saviour, his immediate Lord and pattern) hath suffered in the like kind, (though not in the same manner) and therefore my confident assurance is, that having in this Humble Addresse to deal with such a King, the like of whom England never saw, nor brought forth, experi­mentally (by Gods inscrutable providence) made sensible of the distresses and sufferings of his meanest Subjects, such Lords and Nobles, who themselves have been tryed in the same Fur­nace of Affliction, and for many years last past, have (not through their Princes displeasure; but for being Loyal to their Prince) by the meanest and worst of Plebeians been plundered, and stript of all, and afterwards imprisoned, with as much re­proa [...]h and contempt, as if they had been Chips of the same Block with the most Contemptible Commoner: Such Knights and Burgesses to Sit in Parliament, who if in these times of distraction, they lived in England, and are unacquainted with the miseries of Imprisonment, it argues in them little Cordial Fidelity to their Soveraign Lord, or his Father of Blessed me­mory, whose real friends mildest Lot was reiterated, and se­vere Imprisonments, others being Banished, not a few Mur­thered.

On which Considerations, your Humble Petitioner begs of, and Humbly beseecheth you, who by the good hand of our most Gracious God, have been dragged, many of you out of the Dungeon, some recalled from Exile, to injoy your Anti­ent Priviledges and Freedoms, and sit (according to your true desert and merits) at the Helm of State, to cast back your Gra­cious Eyes upon such who once were fellow Sufferers with you, and not (like Pharaohs Butler) being now your selves restored, to forget the languishing Estate of Joseph, (viz.) your once fellow Prisoner.

This my Lords and Honorable Gentlemen, I speak not as in the least doubting or fearing any such thing; but out of the meer sense of my long, and most unjust suffering; pardon my boldnesse that I am thus importunate (if possible) to find an effectual and speedy remedy.

And not to trouble your Honours with a long Preamble, whose very weighty occasions, cannot admit a tedious discourse, I shall come Humbly to represent my Grievances, so illegal, so [Page 5] many, and carryed on with a high hand, on purpose to ruine your Petitioner, whom several persons of note and power, have confederated to undoe and destroy, in so barbarous, and wickedly malicious a manner and way, as I question not, but in the following particulars to make so plainly evident to your Honors and Wisdoms, as will cause your hearts in reading of them to relent, and commiserate your poor Petitioners Case, yea so to pity him, as effectually to relieve him.

In the year of our Lord 1648 Octob. 21. Richard Dawson Gentleman, then residing in the County of Norfolk, and deal­ing in the Capacity of a Grasier, had at one time, forcibly ta­ken from him 267 Oxen, which were all driven into the Castle of Pomfret, by some who pretended themselves Souldiers of that place, and there came to the possession of one Roger Portington, the Governour denying, that he had any thing to do with them, when Dawson (owner of the Cattle,) demand­ed them of him; but sent him to Portington, to treat with him concerning them, being (as he affirmed) wholly in his power, and withall required Portington to rostore them to Dawson, but he refused to return them, or any part of them, using this ex­asperating expression, to the owners face, That would he give 100 l. for ten of the worst, he should not have them; with which most rugged answer, Dawson being justly provoked, (as well as exasperated by his great losse) in the year 1649, he brought his Action of Trover and Conversion against Portington, which being tryed by Nisi prius, at Guild Hall, in the year 1650. the Plantiff recovered against the Defendant Portington, (with costs of Suit) 1297l. 13s. 4d. according to which verdict, Judge­ment was entred, and Dawson had granted him a Writ of Exe­cution thereupon.

A man would now have thought that the Plantiff had not been far from his mony, having able bail for bringing forth the Body of the Defendant, and him a man of sufficient estate to satisfie a greater debt; But the sequel of this discourse will make it most evident, that as our Laws have been, and are in the Execution of them still abused, there is no Case, so notoriously corrupt and injust; but meeting with a suitable Conscience, joyned with ability of Purse, he may be provided with Lawyers, who for the sake of gain, will maintain and defend the same, in despight of Justice.

[Page 6] For this Portington to discharge his Bayl, rendred himself Prisoner to the Kings Bench, where Dawson charged him in Execution, upon the sore-recited Judgement, and there he to this time continues a Prisoner, although for many years he hath been, and still is at large, dwelling at his own house in York­shire, to the defrauding, and great dammage, of the injured Creditor, who can look upon such actions, no otherwise than Cheats, however seemingly backt with Colour of Law; But of this I shall have cause given to speak more fully hereafter in this discourse: I will now come to shew by what vexatious trou­bles, the Condemned Defendant, hath for ten years molested the greatly suffering Plantiff, by which he hath been put to so much cost, (besides molestation,) that he had better have been himself Condemned in as much more money, and clearly lost his debt, then recovered against the Defendant that Judge­ment, of 1297l. 13s. 4d. For to avoid payment thereof, the Defendant Portington hath not only himself endeavoured, but combined with others, to bring Dawson to ruine, and hath ef­fected it, so far as tedious Law-Suits, and Imprisonments could do the same, to the Expence and Dammage of him the fore­named Plantiff, more than 8000l. which he can make appear; and this by such monstrous courses of Villany, as can scarce be believed, but that the Plantiff can by many Records make out the same.

His first vexatious Dog-trick was, when that invention of Sal­ters-Hall was hatched, for the relief (as was pretended) of Cre­ditors and Debtors: To these Commissioners Portington Ad­dressed himself by Petition, which was granted, and Dawson Summoned thereupon, to have the Case heard by them, who instead of relieving the Creditor, ordered only a rehearng of the Cause before themselves, to which order (patience perforce) Dawson submitted; but the event proved neither relief to Cre­ditor, or Debtor; for that Court after hearing the Cause, and with mature deliberation weighing the merits thereof on both sides, dismist Portingtons Petition, which cooled his hopes and expectation of relief; and for the Creditor Dawson, all his re­lief was, that after the expence of 200l. in that second hearing and Tryal, (several of his Witnesses living 200 miles from Lon­don, besides other ways of great charge and cost) he had only [Page 7] his former Judgement confirmed, and yet as far from his mony as before.

This Dog-trick failing, Portington was soon provided with another, which was, to Petition the usurper Oliver for relief against so due a debt doubly now confirmed by two Tryals; in which Petition (being on Record, and the Copy of it in Dawsons hands, to be shewed any that desire satisfaction therein,) Porting­ton (to his praise be it spoken) who would by all means be thought a Cordial Royalist, did basely, and perfidiously acknow­ledge the Supreme Legislative Power to be in that bloody Re­bel; betraying both his Conscience, and the Cause he pretend­ed to maintain, with design only to cheat his Creditor Dawson of a just debt, so injuriously detained. The Usurper, in answer to his Petition, ordered several references: In attendance upon which, the Creditor was put to a new charge of 100l. or there­about, the Prisoner finding as little relief, as he before had at Salters-Hall (that is none at all) not do I believe he ever ex­pected relief from either, only used these delatory means, if not to defraud, at least to retard his Creditor from getting, what by Law he had recovered; and by multiplying expensive proceedings (although illegal) to weary him out, and tire his patience, seeing more monies dayly thrown away after the for­mer, of which he could now have but little hopes, to receive ei­ther Principal, Interest, or Costs of Suit.

Yet for all these disappointments, he is not weary; but since his Majesties happy Restauration, presented his Petition against Dawson in the Upper House of Parliament, where the Lords after several hearings, thought no relief fit to be granted in the Case, wherein the Law had no lesse than twice had its full, and due course; however, his restlesse spirit hath lately prompted to him another poor shift, and that is, to bring an Audita quere­la, in which he pretends an acquittance by the Act of Indemp­nity, although he hath been a Prisoner in Execution (there­fore) now above ten years since he was first charged there­with.

Howbeit, although I call him a Prisoner, yet (thanks to good Sir John Lenthall) he is one at large▪ this Gentleman when great Rogues come to be Cannonized, shall passe for a pretious Saint, the rules of whose Prison, where he meets with one like himself, [Page 8] that makes no more Conscience of giving, than he of taking a bribe, reach as far as Constantinople, some say to the East-India's, by which means, those who can dispense with their Conscien­ces, va [...]ue the Execution of the Law not a rush; as particularly appears in Portington, who being suffered (though in Executi­on) to live at home, and sometimes for nigh three years to­gether, not to come so much as to Town, hath taken up a re­solution, never to pay his Credit or Dawson a groat, yet boasts, that he can, and will have his Liberty in spight of him, although the hopes of Dawson are, that this Parliament will take such ef­fectual course against these kind of tricks, as may truly relieve the oppressed, and curb the insolencies o [...] unconscionable men.

And so at present I shall leave my first Customer of this kind, and proceed to new, and more prodigious Villanies, acted by o­thers, but countenanced and fomented by this Portington, who to secure himself in his unjust proceedings, hath not been back­ward, in the most hellish designs to act his part, to the shame of those who have abetted him, and his Associates, who were men of Rank and Repute.

In the year of our Lord 1656. Novemb. 11. Dawson being then in Norfolk, had occasion to make use of three hundred pounds for the manageing of his Trade, which he offered to repay in London by Exchange nine days after; which Sum, one Phillip Read, an Attorney in the Court of the Kings Bench, un­dertook to furnish him with all, in two dayes time, provided Dawson would give him a Warrant to an Attorney to confesse a Judgement to him for five hundred pounds, (with a Defeasance, for nine dayes) for his better security of the payment of the said 300l. which Dawson consented to, Signed and Sealed a Warrant, and Read also Signed and Sealed the foresaid Defea­sance annexed thereto, which being delivered mutually by both parties; Dawson came at the time appointed, (viz.) two dayes after, to receive the 300l. according to agreement, but could have no more paid him then 158l. which was repayed by Daw­son to Read, and his appointment in London by the time limi­ted and allowed in the Defeasance, (yea in truth two dayes be­fore) with 15 pounds more, which was lent by him to Read, to be repaid upon demand; upon which payment Dawson cal­led for his Warrant of Attorney, which Read at that time put [Page 9] off with this excuse, That he had forgot, and left it at his house in the Country, promising the delivery of it as soon as he retur­ned to Norfolk; but not performing his word, Dawson made several times other demands of the said Warrant, but had for answer, It was lost: Yet before several persons of Repute and Credit, Read acknowledged himself fully satisfied by Dawson, and nothing to remain due to him from the same. However, Sept. 12, 1657. Read having privately, without the least know­ledge or suspition of Dawson, entred that Judgement, took out Execution upon it, against the goods of Dawson, and by virtue thereof did levy in the County of Norfolk to the value of 700l. and after sent one Thomas Hide into Huntingtonshire, who by his order, without Writ of Execution, or any other Authori­ty but his direction, took away 47 fat Bullocks, worth 200l. and sold them; nor content with this, he in the same year and month, in the County of Norfolk, at a place called Wallpool in Marshland, did by Colour of the said Execution, seize of the proper goods of the said Dawson, viz. Hay (in Stacks and Reecks) to the value of 500l. which though he had no power to condemn and dispose of, yet he detained by colour of his own Execution, till he could, and did procure one Robert Dun by a pretended Execution to Levy the same, and sell it.

Upon which illegal abuse, Dawson made complaint to the then judges of the Kings Bench, (in those dayes called the Up­per Bench) by whose order, Read was committed Prisoner in the Custody of Sir John Lenthall; but by favour of some of his Fraternity, forthwith had his Liberty, which he imployed so well, that before the end of the same Term, he procured one Disney to commit wilful perjury, with intent to overthrow Dawson in his most just cause, he when Read first moved to him that he should make such an Oath, replyed, Master I know no such thing, who then swore by his Maker, that unlesse he would make that Oath, as he directed him, he was utterly un­done; so partly by importunity, partly by promises, he pro­cured the said Disney desperately to swear against his own knowledge,; Whereupon Dawson endicted Disney for this per­jury, and this Master for subornation thereto, since which Disney's Conscience accusing him, he hath confest to several persons of worth and repute, that his Master Read would ne­ver [Page 10] permit him to be at rest, till he had perswaded him, to make Oath of such things, of which he had not the least knowledge.

For which Cause in Easter Term 1658. Dawson filed a De­claration in the Kings Bench against Read, (who did, and still doth practise there as an Attorney) upon the Case, in a special Action, which the first of July he brought to a Tryal, and reco­vered 700l. dammage, besides costs of Suit, 18l. for which the following Michaelmas Term he had Judgement, and Executi­on granted thereupon, against the person of Read, which Writ being delivered to the Sheriff of Norfolk; the businesse was so jugled between them, that although Read was often in the She­riffs Company, yet he was not taken in Execution, nor would the Sheriff at the instance of Dawson return the Writ, for seve­ral Terms, and at last returned a non est inventus thereupon, when Read during the time of detaining this Writ, without Exe­cution or Return, had embroyled Dawson in a tedious and char­geable Chancery Suit, which because of its Exemplary Injustice, and Corruption, discovered in the manageing thereof, shall be particularly here set down.

Not long after, Dawson had got against Read this Judgement, and Execution; the Defendant sues for relief in Chancery, and serves Dawson with a Subpaena to that purpose, and proceeds the Vacation following to examine witnesses, and by favour with the Master of the Rolls (William Lenthall) procures the cause to be forthwith set down for a hearing in Easter Term (sudden­ly then following) 1659. which Term being adjourned, the Cause was again set down for hearing at the Rolls, the 9th. of June following, where as soon as it was opened by Reads Counsel, Lenthall (the Consciencious Master of the Rolls) cal­led for Dawson, and in seeming familiar friendship told him, he would make a bargain with him, (viz.) that Read should with­in two dayes pay him Four hundred pounds, and the differences between them made up, and fully ended thereupon, to whom Dawson replyed, his debt was 718l. in recovery of which it had cost him no lesse then 500l. When Lenthall saw that this bait would not allure Dawson to bite at it, who had sufficient for­mer experience of his corrupt basenesse, and dissembling villa­ny, (as before the Close of this discourse shall be discovered in another case,) he then demanded of Reads Counsel, if they could produce any Presidents, where relief in Equity, had been [Page 11] granted, in the like case after recovery, Judgement, and Writ for Execution, who replyed, there were several Presidents, upon which answer, Lenthall put off the hearing till the 18th. follow­ing, of the same month, against which time he willed them to have those presidents in readinesse, and then he would deter­mine the Cause; but in the mean time tyed up Dawson not to take Read in Execution: the appointed day for hearing being come, upon reading the first president, Lenthall told them plainly, it made not at all for, but against them; but he had since the last hearing, Considered of the Cause on his pillow, and so forthwith, without farther hearing Counsel on either side, ordered them to go to a new Tryal at Law, after which he would reserve the Equity to himself; but in the mean time Read should not be taken in Execution, with which orders Dawson being much agrieved, Petitioned the then Lords Com­missioners of the Great Seal (as they were called) complain­ing of the great injustice he suffred thereby; in answer to which Petition, they granted him a rehearing before them, upon which, Counsel having spoken on both sides, they dismist Reads Bill, and discharged the several orders made by the Master of the Rolls, with costs to be taxt by a Master of Chancery, which were accordingly taxed at an hundred marks; Whereupon Sir John Lenthall (one of the Rebel Olivers mock Knights) Son to the Master of the Rolls, being at that time a Member of that thing, then called a Parliament, seeing Read thus left to the Law, (notwithstanding his honest Fathers devices to obstruct the same) gives him his protection during the sitting of that Convention.

Read finding himself thus countenanced, by the Master of the Rolls and his Son, (for which as himself confesseth, it cost him three hundred pounds thinks he is now armed Capape, for any villany, and having a prodigiously villanous wit, goes thorow stitch to the purpose, and thus performs it. First he perswades and prevails with one Robert Dun, that he might make use of his name, (at his own charge and costs) to confesse, and enter a Judgement against Dawson, for the Sum of 350l. upon which grant. Read as representing the person, and taking upon him the name of Richard Dawson, forged the foresaid Warrant of Attorney, Subscribes and Seals it, as if himself had been the [Page 12] person of Dawson, and then delivers it to the use of Robert Dun, having witnesses in readinesse, (who upon examination affirm that they knew neither the persons of Read or Dawson) to sub­scribe to the delivery thereof as the Act and Deed of Dawson.

Upon which Warrant so given by himself, he procured a Judgement to be entred, and Execution taken out, and levyed on the Goods of Dawson in the County of Norfolk, where by a Combination between him and the Sheriff, with his under Offi­cers, (who knew very well the Judgement to be grounded upon a forged Warrant of Attorney before the Execution of the Writ,) 1000l. worth of Goods were seized and sold, yet valu­ed but at 150l. which Goods so under valued, were bought by one John Prat, whom Read procured to buy them upon a joynt account, between them both.

Which 1000l. being thus swallowed up between these two devourers, and the Execution still unsatisfied more than one half; in the next place, Read sues forth a Commission of Bankruptship against Dawson, in the name of Dun, for the un­conscionable remainder of the pretended Execution; to sit up­on which, he pickt up Commissioners of his own Confederates, who in a very short time after the Commission came to their hands, declared Dawson a Bankrupt, and discharged Read from payment of any monyes to him, no other pretence of Debt, be­ing brought before these Commissioners to prove this Statute a­gainst Dawson, but only the forged Warrant for Judgement, as is before at large recited, and testified by those very witnesses who were present at the Sealing and Delivering that Warrant of Attorney, who deposed that Read (whom then they had no per­sonal knowledge of) Subscribed, Sealed, and Delivered it, in the name and counterfeiting the Person of Dawson.

Things being thus corruptly and unjustly carryed, Dawson to prevent (if possible) the ruine, which he saw inevitably hanging over the heads of himself and Family, unlesse such villanies were redressed, in Michaelmas Term 1659. made his com­plaint before the Judges of the Kings Bench, of the fore-recited horrible Forgery of Read in his name, as also of false witnesses, which were suborned by him, and in readinesse to swear that Dawson was the very person, who Signed and Sealed the War­rant of Attorney, to the use of Dun; upon which complaint the [Page 13] Court, referred, the matter of fact in the Case to the examinati­on of Mr. Herne Secondary of the same Court, who upon exa­mination of Dun, and several other witnesses, found that no monyes were due from Dawson to him; but on the contrary, Dun was indebted to Dawson in the Sum of 400l. due upon Bond, who had a general release from him under Hand and Seal, before the forging that Warrant of Attorney, (by Read, in his name) nor did ever Dawson deal with him since, as he hath confessed in the hearing of several persons; To make which more evident, Dawson hath now from Dun a Judgement upon Record, acknow­ledged by himself, for that same debt of 400l. then due when this forgery was committed, Dun having moreover confessed on his Oath, that Read to acquit himself of the Judgement for 718l. and 100 Marks Costs, did Sollicite him to consent to, and own this forgery, and suing forth the Statute of Bankruptship against Dawson thereupon.

Mr, Herne having carefully sifted the whole truth of the Case, made thereof a just report to the Court, who thereupon order­ed a Tryal at Law, and the rule was, that this Tryal should be (according to the Election of Dawson) at the next Assizes in Norfolk, or Suffolk, upon a feigned Action, whether the Warrant of Attorney were the Act and Deed of Dawson or no, which if upon tryal, the Jurors should find in the affirmative, then the monyes in the Sheriffs hand (made of the goods levied in Execution) to be delivered to Dun, but if they should find in the Negative, then the Judgement to be vacated, and the moneys restored to Dawson; Dawson upon this order mo­ved, that the Tryal might be either in London or Middlesex, where the Forgery was committed, because at so great distance, Knights of the post might stand for substantial witnesses.

Yet in this he was overborne by the Court, and the Tryal ordered in one of those two Counties, who because he could have it no better, chose of two Evils the least, and had his Try­al at Bury St. Edmonds, at the Assizes holden Sept. 10. 1660. for the County of Suffolk.

Read making Cock-sure of the Tryal to goe on his side, being at such a distance, carries down the Record, and with it Wit­nesses that knew how to swear home; Dawson also knowing the justice of his Cause, fearing the other should neglect it, [Page 14] (though Defendant) he also carried the Record with him, to tryal, in case Read, and Dun should not; So two Juryes were Impannelled, one on the Plaintiffes, another on the De­fendants score; And although Dawson might have just cause to fear the packing of a Jury, on the behalf of Read and Dun, whom his former experience had taught him, to be notoriously villanous, yet trusting to the righteousnesse of his Cause, rather than contend, was content to lose the benefit of his own Re­cord, and proceed to tryal by their Jury.

Who being sworn upon the Case between Dun and Dawson, Read who was at the charge of that Tryal, and carrying the wit­nesses out of London, as hath been since confessed upon Oath, by the Plaintiff Dun, and several other witnesses, and may be concluded by this undenyable Circumstance, that Read gave Ten thousand pound security, to the Warden of the Fleet, to whom Dun was then a prisoner, to have him personally present at the Tryal to own the same, yet this Read appears as one wit­ness in the behalf of Dun, and swore that Warrant of Attorney was a true Warrant, and Signed and Sealed by Dawson to Dun, for 220l. which Dawson owed him, although in truth Read did himself Forge, Sign, and Seal that Warrant, as hath been al­ready said, and also made appear by Oath upon Record.

Having thus led the Dance, he next produceth another wit­ness like himself, to confirm his testimony, who went by the name of William Holmes (which name also, was so subscribed to the Warrant of Attorney) but that person being dead, this Counterfeit swears positively, that he was the same William Holmes, who subscribed his Hand to that Warrant of Attorney, which he upon Oath said, was Signed, Sealed, and Delivered by that same Richard Dawson, who was then Defendant in that Cause; But it was discovered in Court, that this pretended William Holmes, was indeed Isaack Harding a Scrivener, now, and for thirty years last past dwelling in Swan-Alley near Hol­born-Bridge, and was hired by Read for the Sum of 45s. paid him in hand by his appointment, besides what was promised him afterward, to make that desperate Oath, which he knew to be false in every Circumstance of it.

Now how God was pleased to discover the falshood and per­jury of these Villains, whose feared Consciences durst attest [Page 15] his Divine Majesty so solemnly, yet so falsely, it will not be a­miss to declare briefly.

In the time of the hatching, and prosecuting the afore-menti­oned Villany against Dawson, one Thomas Gunning, was by Ro­bert Dun perswaded to goe to a certain person, unknown (but only to the Procurers and Abbetters of the intended Cheat) to make demand of 220l. of him (as if he had been Richard Dawson) which sum he was to pay unto him upon Defeasance of a Warrant of Attorney, to confesse a Judgement for 350l. which Dun told Gunning, Richard Dawson had Signed and Seal­ed, and that Party to whom he sent him, was the same person; Gunning (at that time not knowing Dawson) made demand accordingly; That Counterfeit person owning the name of Richard Dawson, promised payment of the Sum demanded in a Weeks time; Of which demand, and an answer thereto returned, by the supposed Richard Dawson, Gunning (being perswaded by Dun) made Affidavit: The true Dawson hearing this news, so strange to him, testified upon Oath, was alarum'd thereby to look about, and being Authorized by an Order, to bring in this Deponent Gunning, to see if he would make good his Deposi­tion the whole Plot was in part discovered, for seeing the true Richard Dawson in presence, he not only upon his Oath denied him to be the same, of whom he made the aforesaid demand of 220l. (who then professed himself to be the same Party) but also Deposed, that Dun in the name of Read, had offered him 40l. to swear that Warrant of Atorney to be the Act and Deed of Dawson, and bringing him to Read's Chamber in Davids-Inne, there Read himself proffered him (in Case he would so make Oath) to maintain him at his Country-House, furnish him with a good Horse, and give him forty pounds in money, as is at large declared in the Deposition of Thomas Gunning, before the Right Honourable Justice Mallet, taken July 27. 1660.

This first light in short time (with Gods blessing) discove­red the whole design; For afterward, Richard Ramsey one of the witnesses to that Warrant of Attorney, being Subpaena'd by Read, four dayes before the Tryal at Bury Assizes, at his Cham­ber in Davids-Inne, to be witness in the Case between Dun and Dawson, there Read proffer'd him five pound in hand, to swear [Page 16] that the Defendant Dawson did Sign, Seal, and deliver that Warrant of Attorney, to the use of Dun, he when he came in Court ingeniously related the truth, viz. that he was present at signing, and sealing that Warrant of Attorney, and subscribed his Mark as a Witness thereto, but then knew not either Dun or Dawson, but since knowing both, he on his Oath affirmed, Dawson not to be present at that time, but Read was the very person who signed, sealed, and delivered it in the name of Daw­son; he also upon Oath declared the proffer of five pound in hand, made him by Read, in case he would swear as was before related; also, that then, and several other times, he saw Read give Dun money to prosecute the said Suit of Forgery, and that Jacob Wrag, Clerk to Read, told him after the Tryal, that had not he been at Bury Assizes, his Master Read and Dun, had o­verthrown Dawson, by the evidence of Isaac Harding, who there swore by the name of William Holmes.

Which William Holmes being then dead, on his death bed did declare, that he was sollicited, but was not witness to the War­rant of Attorney against Dawson, to Dun, yet his name was subscribed, his person and hand counterfeited; and though at the Tryal he were dead, yet Harding, who as a Scrivener had attested several Leases, and Deeds, (for above thirty years space) by the name of Isaac Harding, for the sum of forty five shillings, paid in hand, (besides what was afterward pro­mised) he desperately swore what he knew to be false, under the counterfeit name of William Holmes, whose name and hand, was at first only forged, as before was said.

Thus it pleased God to defeat the Devices of these two mali­cious desperate Villains, and to discover their forgeries, so that the old perjured Wretch, that swore by a disguised name, got nothing by his counterfeiting, and forswearing himself, not those who employed him, but a bare detection of their Villa­ny, to the confusion of themselves, and the amazement of the hearers.

Dawson having this ground to work upon, proceeds to the ex­amination of Dun whose Conscience beginning to relent, had compelled him to acknowledge what he had acted against him, to several of his acquaintance; which he hearing of, procured his examination before the Right Honourable Lord Chief Ju­stice [Page 17] Foster, Nov. 26, 1660. who there upon Oath confessed, that the Warrant for Judgement to an Atturney, and Commissi­on for Bankruptship, sued forth thereupon, were both carried on in his name, by the instant importunity of Read, and at his Costs and Charge, with design only to defraud Dawson of the 718l. Judgement recovered by him against Read and the Costs taxed in Chancery upon the dismission of his Bill, by the Lords Commissioners, and that he did verily believe, the Com­missioners, who sat upon the Statute taken out in his name, did declare Dawson a Bankrupt, under their hands and seals, only at the request, and importunate desire of Read. He also con­firmed upon his Oath, Reads suborning Isaack Harding, to swear at Bury Assizes, under the false borrowed name of Willi­am Holmes, that he saw the Warrant of Attorney, which was made to Dun, for 350l. signed, and sealed, by that very Daw­son who appeared Defendant in that Case in the Court, for which Oath so to be made, Read gave him forty five shillings in hand; Likewise, that by the Confession of Read, as well as the information of divers credible persons, he was assured, that Read was often in company with the Under-Sheriffe of Norfolk, du­ring that very time, he had a Writ of Execution against him, (at the Suit of Dawson) for a Judgement of 718l. recovered by law. And lastly, that one Jacob Wrag (Servant to Read) came to him (the Deponent) in his Masters name, to desire him not to discover any of these things before mentioned, and for so doing, he would be careful for him, and not suffer him to want.

Thus, at length was made a compleat discovery of all the windings and turnings of these Serpentine Monsters in Villany, one of them, in whose name, and by whose industry (in great measure) things were thus corruply (or rather hellishly) car­ried, upon his Oath discovering himself, and accusing, and so branding his wicked partner, with a black note of infamy, not to be wiped off by all the cunning he, or his accursed Tutor in these Forgeries, Perjuries, and subornation to perjury, can find out, or invent. To God the true Author of this discovery, be ascri­bed the sole praise, and glory thereof.

The several chief heads of the testimonies of these three De­ponents, I thought fit here to set down with what perspicuity [Page 18] and brevity I could, (not swerving in the least from the true in­tent and meaning of the Affidavits themselves) which are at large upon Record, taken before Honourable Persons, as was before touched in each of them; the name of the Right Honour­able the Judge, before whom taken, being particulary remem­bred, in giving their testimonies in brief, for the Readers fuller satisfaction, and further confirmation.

To which I might adde many more of the like Kind, thirty several at least, but that I here account needlesse, since in the mouth of two or three witnesses, each thing in controversy, is, and ought to be confirmed, and here we have not only witnes­ses, but (ipsos fatentes reos) the persons concerned in the for­gery, (either ignorantly or knowingly, drawn in thereto,) upon Oath confessing against both themselves, and one another, which is a testimony as firm as can be desired or expected.

I shall now speak a little more particularly to the Statute of Bankruptship, sued forth by Read in the name of Dun against Dawson, and firmed by Commissioners pickt, and packt for the same purpose, only to discharge Read from paying any monies to Dawson, whose just debt, upon a legal recovery was upward of 800l.

For taking forth, and granting, or affirming the same, Daw­son brought his action against Read, and those Commissioners, his Confederates; and upon Tryal in Jan. 1660. recovered a­gainst them 500l. notwithstanding which, upon an Affidavit of Reads, read openly in the Court, at the Kings Bench Bar, a moti­on was made to have a second hearing, which was had by the consent of both Plantiff and Defendants the Hillary Term fol­lowing; where Read (according to his old wont) procured in readinesse four several witnesses, to swear Dawson a real Bank­rupt, (viz.) Thomas Wigge, one of Honest Sir John Lenthalls Engineers, a villain so notorious in that kind, that if in any Case, (where he is well paid) his Evidence come short, (that is) be not sworn home enough, blame the Lawyer that gave him not better and larger instructions, and not him, who wants only to be informed, what manner of Oath will serve turn; then as for performance, let him alone for one. The second Ja­cob Wragge, servant to Read, one who had learned so much of his Masters qualities, that no wise man can trust his Word, or [Page 19] believe his Oath; the third Robert Coghill, a neighbour to Read, who by this hopeful beginning, gives great assurance, what a com­pleat Knight of the Post he may prove in time, if he continue the acquaintance, and follow the direction of Read; the last, Tho­mas Adamson formerly a Clerk to Read, who it seems still wants his help at a dead lift, (knowing his abilities) though at present he hath left his Service: These four, being pre-instruct­ed, could (if occasion had required) have sworn any man of dealing, in England a Bankrupt; for to give them their due, in their depositions, there wanted nothing but Truth, Malice enough, and Formality sufficient, with a home shot to reach the mark aimed at by Read, their Tutor, who put cruel words of falsehood into their mouths, and told them what manner of Oaths would serve his turn, and they accordingly swore as dan­gerously, desperately, and resolutely against the Credit and Re­putation of their innocent Neighbour, whom some of them knew not, others very little; all of them, knew certainly that what they swore against him, was absolutely false, and so God by his providence hath plainly since discover'd it to be, to the great shame of those poor perjured wretches; but most especi­ally of that Monster, who suborned them to doe it, as he had done others often before.

For which wilful perjury (palpably now detected) these four abovenamed, stand indicted at the Old Bayly in London, by Dawson, who doubts not, but to have them brought to Con­digne, and Exemplary punishment.

Thus have I in brief decyphred out to you, a great Monster in villany, as in a Landskip, given you a large volume of Rogue­ry contracted into an Epitome, a short narrative of what to his cost and trouble, Dawson (who hath still been the sufferer hi­therto) hath felt for these many years, to the ruine almost of his Wife, Children, and Family, and whose Case or Lot may it not be next? nay who can escape for future? if such Villa­nies be countenanced, as they will be if not prohibited, and severely punished to the terror of others? It is reported of a Bravoe, that he would vauntingly boast, how he had at his beck ready an hundred to swear for him, an hundred to fight for him, and an hundred more to supply him with money.

The thing, (though▪ I cannot affirm the number) is most true [Page 20] of this Read; who as for swearers, hath made his boasts, that he is so provided with a stock of them, as never to fail in any Case, and that his manner of dealing with such Knights of the Post, is suitable to that of the Dutch before a Sea-fight, with their Marriners, viz. to give them 20 or 30 glasses of Sack, just before they come upon their Oaths, then (quoth he) they are fit to serve my turn, and swear resolutely, bravely, and boldly, without making the least scruple of any thing that is told them makes absolutely for the good of the Cause depending, to have it sworn either thus, or otherwise.

And for fighting (or rather maintaining his quarrel,) 'twould make a man blesse himself to see prodigious Villains so favou­red, before one that mannageth a Cause as just as Justice it self, (having been so often determined just, by the reiterated Sen­tences of Common-Law, Commissioners for Equity; &c.) How did the honest Master of the Rolls (Speaker to the refor­ming Rump) endeavour to entrap Dawson in favour of Read? How was Read with great charge, brought into a Prison, where he deserved to lye till death, yet (Presto be gone Sir) dischar­ged forthwith? and Dawson brought in upon a large Scroll of Fob'd Actions, to keep the other, and such as he procured to commit Perjury wilfully and maliciously, from Condigne pu­nishment? How ready was the Sheriff of Norfolk to Execute a Writ upon a forged Warrant for Judgement, against Dawson, and yet knew it to be so, (using this expression, He would Exe­cute 1000 the like, if they were brought to him, and Goods of Dawsons to be found in his Balywick;) yet how loth, nay ab­solutely unwilling to Execute a true Writ, upon a Judgement, justly recovered, in Court, (after the discovery of a pack of Roguery) against Read; though oft in his Company, nor would be perswaded to make return of the same, till Reads Cockatrise Eggs of Villany were hatched? How have the Gaolers, and their fetting dogs, complyed with this perjured Monster and his Con­federates, to ruine one in defence of the other? Portington a Condemned Debtor to Dawson, and Prisoner to Sir John Len­thall in Execution, having liberty to choose whether he would live in restraint or no; and Read cast into Prison, for Perjury, and Subornation thereto, Forgery, personating other men, and taking upon him their names, not without great cost and [Page 21] charge to the Plaintiff, yet he in short time, let out, upon in­considerable Bayl, though Dawson wrongfully imprisoned upon feigned, false Actions, maliciously brought against him, to hinder his prosecuting these so abominable Villains, hath not liberty to remain in one prison; but is tost (like a Curr in a blanket) from Gaol to Gaol, to a vast expence of monyes, nor without danger to his person, being this present Term, removed from the Fleet (where he was so happy, as to be free from grosse incivilities,) to the Kings Bench, where the Keeper Sir John Lenthall, for a base bribe, hath injustly (yet much like himself, and his Brother, the Quondam Ravenous Master of the Rolls) suffered Portington, a Prisoner in Execution, at his Suit, to have free liberty, these many years, to the defrauding his greatly oppressed Creditor, and his extraordinary dammage; and is now become a deadly Enemy to Dawson, because he Sues him for an Escape.

I might be large here, but that I study and must affect brevi­ty; In a word then to close this sad discourse concerning this bad Subject, I wish only that the effect and tendency of such practises would be seriously weighed, which is no other than the total subversion of all our Laws, and destruction of civil po­licy; for if all that is recovered by legal processe, may be so e­vaded, and detained from the Plantiff, and Costs multiplyed by vexatious after hearings, his Estate pluckt away violently, by forged Judgements, and these proved true and real by wilfull perjury, till the party thus wronged hath not monyes left him to prosecute such injuries, or to make a motion in Court, yet when this is discovered, and openly made to appear, the par­ties doing the wrong, be not curbed, and discountenanced, what hopes can an honest man have for future in a just and righteous Cause, well then may we cry out with the Philosopher, fiat Justitia, aut ruet Coelum.

Willingly could I now throw aside my pen, but that more injuries compel me to a farther complaint: From relating the Villanies of an Attorney; I would next proceed to match him with a pair of as great Villains as himself, in his own profession, viz. a Sollicitor and a Counsellor, which three, if the Devi [...] had a Cause to be prosecuted, he could not be better fitted with a leash of Lawyers.

[Page 22] But before I come to a survey of their Villanous actings, I shall relate a short particular Case, which for ought I know hath no relation to any of the rest, but was carried on by the Conscien­tious Master of the Rolles, and a Kinsman of his (as very an ho­nest man as himself) to the Dammage of Dawson at the least 2000l.

About the year 1649. Dawson Commenced a Suit with Ma­thew Binkes a Grasier, for a great summe of money, which he injuriously detained from him, and by Law recovered 805l. and had Judgment entered for the same, Binkes brings his Bill for relief in Chancery, whereupon after a tedious Suit, and great Expences (the Commissioners for examination of wit­nesses, sitting above a hundred and eighty miles from London,) at last the cause came to hearing, before the honest Speaker William Lenthal, at the Rolls, who perswaded Dawson to re­ferre the matter to a person whom he should name, promising to name an honest indifferent man, a stranger to both their per­sons, and the Cause; but scorning to be as good as his word, nominated a Kinsman of his own, by name John Nabbs, whose Son was Sollicitor in that Cause against Dawson for Binks, and pleaded it before his Father so effectually, that Nabbs gave a­way the Judgment of 805l. from Dawson, and moreover, or­dered him to pay 44l. 4s. 6d. costs to Binks, a strange order, which could not be expected otherwise, considering how it was brought forth, for neither Dawson, or any friend of his for him, was present or heard, but only Binks and such who spake on his side, the chief of whom was Nabbs Son, a Sollicitor retained by Binks.

Nor was the Judgment only given away, but Dawson order­ed to acknowledge satisfaction for the same upon Record, which he refusing, appealed to the then Lords Commissioners, Lisle, &c. who without proofs or allegations, ordered Daw­son to be committed Prisoner to the Fleet, until he submitted to perform the order of Nabbs, whom the Master of the Rolls had impowered to hear, and finally determine that Cause with­out appeal.

Nabbs understanding that Dawson questioned his decretal or­der, in a most unjust revenge, further ordered 180l. more to be paid to Binks for costs, which payment Dawson refusing, a [Page 23] Serjeant at Armes was commanded to seize and imprison him, till he did acknowledge satisfaction on the Judgment for 805l. pay the first 44l. 4s. 6d. and the other 180l. a­warded for Costs, and give a general Release, never more to question Binks.

Now the injustice of Nabbs decree may easily be evinced, for that the Master of the Rolls, before Dawson consented to the reference, proffer'd to give him by decree, 380l. (taking the rule of those Consciencious Jurors, who at a venture hang half, and save half,) which Dawson refusing as unjust, and too much damnifying him, at last consented to a reference, where such a Referre was appointed by Lenthal, who gave not only the judgement away wholly, but above 200l. more, for imaginary costs, refusing to hear any testimony on Dawsons side, but per­remptorily binding him up to his determination, upon pain of imprisonment, to avoid which, Dawson was a long time hunt­ed from County to County, by the Officers of the Fleet, and at last finding such a fugitive life, to tend to his absolute ruine, he was enforced to submit to this monstrous piece of injustice, not seeing then any hopes of remedy. Lenthal being a man so powerful, and Nabbs supported by him, that not to yield to them then, signified nothing else but present ruine, they being able to crush at their pleasure whom they listed.

He that knows the manner of dealing of the Master of the Rolls, may give a shrewd guesse at what it cost Binkes to pur­chase this piece of injustice, who thriv'd so well upon it, that he who then was visibly responsible for such a debt trebled, is now as far from being master of a tithe of such a summe, as he was then from honesty; from whence may be concluded unde­niably, that at the long runne, honest dealing will prove the best policy.

And now I am at leisure to take notice of, and lay open the injuries wherewith I have been, and still am oppressed, by the procurement of two Lawyers, a Counsellour, and a Sollicitor, Brothers in Profession, Name, and Villainy, Francis Lutterel, and Edward Lutterel, who both write themselves of Grayes-Inne, but their practises have been so basely foul, and grosse­ly corrupt, as may justly be the shame of all the Innes of Court, which I hope will shortly spue out such, (I will not say Vil­lains, [Page 24] because they are Lawyers) but who are the scorn and shame of the long Robe.

Edward Lutterel, who prectiseth as a Sollicitor, was in that Capacity emp [...]oyed by Dawson for several years, who was in­deed the chief means o [...] his sustenance for that time, he having not bread for either himself or children, but what was bought with the money wherewith Dawson relieved him, who thought he had so engaged him by many kindnesses▪ that he might bold­ly commit his very life into his hands, as he unadvisedly be-trusted him with his means of live [...]yhood, almost to his utter undoing, as shall be particularly related with as much brevity as I can.

He as I said being employed by Dawson as a Sollicitor, was acquainted with the forgery, and unjust devices of Read and Dun, in tended for the ruine of Dawson, who, as soon as by his industry, and Gods blessing thereon, he could get together 500, or 1000l. worth of Goods, would immediately with Executions taken out upon forged Warrants sweep all a­way.

Dawson at that time having in the County of Norfolk at Wal­pool, Hay [...]o the value of about 1200l. being at least six hundred Load, which at that time might have been sold in the place for forty shillings the Load, or thereabout, and a short time of some months interest in the Land on which it grew, and then stood made up in Stacks, in which time the grass upon the Land, was (for feeding Cattle) worth at least threescore pound or upwards. Edward Luttrel perswaded Dawson for avoiding the malicious mischief intended against him by Read and Dun, to sell and make over those Goods and Leases to him, out of which he would discharge 402l. 10s. 2d. which Dawson was ingaged to several persons for, and bring him into his purse 500l. more, and himself defray all incident charges.

Dawson confiding in the honesty of Edward Luttrel, consents hereto, and gives him a Scedule particularly mentioning all his Debts, to whom due, and when payable,; summed up in the Total, as was above exprest, in Consideration of the payment of which, and the Sum of 500l. over and besides to be paid to Dawson by Luttrel, he consents to the making of an Indenture of Sale, which was accordingly made by his Brother Francis [Page 25] Luttrel the Counsellor, with the Scedule of Dawsons Debts annexed to the Deed, which Edward Luttrel upon receipt of this Deed, un­dertook to discharge, and for ever to acquit Dawson from, and every part of them, then and there assuming, and faithfully engaging his promise to pay to Dawson 500l. over and above the Debts; This Deed was made July 25. 1659. as by it and the Scedule doth more at large appear. Edward having gotten this Estate in his hands, began to slight Dawson, bidding him pay his Debts himself, nor did he ei­ther satisfie them as he had ingaged, nor pay to Dawson one penny, according to his Assumption, and faithful promise.

Dawson being thus deluded, and unworthily dealt with, addresseth himself to the Counsellor (Francis Luttrel) who had promised, and undertaken to him, that his Brother Edward should fully perform and make good his promise, or he in default of him would himself make it good, but he was so far from performing what he promised, that he threatned Dawson, that in case he sued or molested him upon the score of his promise, he would grind him to powder: his Bro­ther Edward boasting, that before he should pay to Dawson, or for him, one Groat, the Counsellor his Brother would furnish him with a 1000l. to spend in Law.

From which time both the Luttrels, have most maliciously com­bined with Read, the old implacable Enemy of Dawson, aud other of his associated Confederates, to avoid whom was the first pre­tence used, and urged by Edward Luttrel, to induce and perswade Dawson to make over the Estate unto him.

Which by his own words and Confession, as is testified upon Oath by one of his acquaintance, was worth more than 1000l. and made over to him upon that Consideration, that he should first of all pay Debts, to which he agreed, and promised the same, but said he would neither do it, nor give Dawson an account of his Estate, of which Intention, being demanded the reason, gave this, that he had got into his hands the whole by which Dawson intended, or was a­ble to pay his Debts, or live upon, and therefore was resolved if he would keep himself but honest, he would keep him poor enough; Which word of his he hath kept to his ability, For when ever Daw­son brought his Action against one or both of them, at Common Law, they would sue for relief in Chancery, as namely that the Goods were but only made over to Edward in trust, for the use of Richard, and so that Condition of payment of Debts, &c. to be only pro formâ, and not intended to be interpreted to the prejudice of Edward; upon [Page 24] [...] [Page 25] [...] [Page 26] which and the like false suggestions, Dawson was tied up by Injunction and Orders not to proceed at Common Law, till the Cause were heard in the Court of Chancery, where when Dawson preferred his Cross-bill of Complaint, expecting to have the merits of his Cause heard by the Right Honourable the Lord Chancellor; In stead of Answer, he had an old Outlawry, long before reversed, and superse­ded, pleaded in Bar to his Complaint, to disprove which, cost the said Richard much money, besides great trouble and delay of time; To adde to whose incumbrance, and if possible to make him for ever uncapable to prosecute those oppressing betrayers of his peace, Ed­ward hath caused to be sued against him most of those Debts which he had engaged to discharge and pay, yet keeps his Estate without satis­faction therefore, or account thereof given to Dawson, pretending it was formally made over to him only in trust, which trust he hath made good with a vengance; But in truth the Goods were absolutely sold▪ and the Deed of bargain and sale delivered to him (bonâ fide) upon which he received them, took them into his possession, sold as much of them as according to his own words would serve his turn, and then complied with Read to seize the rest (as Dawsons goods) which he upon absolute sale, aud delivery, had enjoyed and possessed for many months together, with the Land which Dawson made over to him, for the full time of his Leases therein, without molestation of Read, Dun, or any other, and had them also six months in possessi­on after the time was expired, which Dawson made over to him by vertue of his Leases.

Yea when Dawson after the Sale and Delivery (being with him in Norfolk) advised him to the selling of the Hay, in which he had more insight then Luttrell; he bad him meddle with his own business, for he had nothing to do there with either the Goods or Ground, which were sold and made over to him; And after that, when Dawson per­ceived that he did not pay those debts, he desired of him, that he would either sell the Goods, and make payment, or resign them to some other, who would give security, to indemnifie him, (the said Luttrell,) as to his ingagement of paying debts; but he replyed, the Goods were his own, which he would neither resign, nor sell, but when he saw his own time. Nor was he ashamed to boast, that he had met with such a bargain from Dawson, that he would put 500l. into his own purse thereby, which it were strange if he could do any other way, than by cheating him of the whole, and that was the course he took, in which he was incouraged and supported by his Bro­ther.

[Page 27] And suitable to the dealing of him, in this Case of Hay and Leases of Land, was another trick of knavery put upon Richard by Edward about the sale of a Coach, which costing Richard 40. l. he sold it to Luttrell for 30l. by a Deed of Sale, which 30l. he the said Richard ordred Edward to pay 5l. to his Brother Francis Luttrell, and 25l to Richard Norwich, which payments (so ordred) Edward Luttrell did assume and promise to make; upon which only consideration, the Bill of Sale for the Coach was by Richard delivered to Edward.

Francis Luttrell who ordered the Deed to be made, accepted of this payment from his Brother Edward, and did thereupon discharge Dawson of the Debt of five pounds, though since the Coach is sold by Edward, and the money for it received, and spent, Francis makes new demand of the money from Dawson, Edward refusing to pay either his Brother Francis, or Richard Norwich, but when sued for this Debt of thirty pounds by Dawson, he first by Levata querela, removed it into the Mayors Court, where by his Bill, he pretended himself only a Trustee for the Coach, as before he was for the Hay, though such trusts so discharged, will shortly bring him to be trusted by none.

For these have been his continual Subterfuges, first to pretend on­ly a trust in Dawsons Goods, that he might have colour to sue for re­lief in Chancery, and there in stead of making answer material to the Cause depending, to plead old reversed Outlawryes in Bar, so that at once Dawson is tied up from his legal course of proceeding (by In­junctions) and debarred in Chancery to prosecute those his Bills, till he hath with great cost and trouble disproved the pretended Out­lawryes to be in force, of which Luttrel hath made his brags to se­veral of his Companions, as is by some of them testified upon Oath, and also upon Record.

Nor is this all▪ though it argue a mind as bad as bad may be, but by compliance with the Clerks of Chancery, this Luttrel hath not sel­dome penned his own Orders, which have been entred down accord­ing to his own words (as can be proved against him undeniably) upon which advantage it is not to be wondred at, that Dawson is still the sufferer, when his Enemies profell, are in effect the Contrivers of their own Orders, which no doubt (having that liberty) they pen with the greatest advantage for themselves▪ To prove which Charge real, the last Order which was left for Richard at the Regist­ers Office, was every word thereof, the hand-writing of Edward Luttrel, which he hath in readinesse to shew, in case it be required of him.

[Page 28] Now how sad the Case of Dawson is, may be collected briefly, if we consider his present Condition, and compare it with what he was formerly, one who dealt for at least 20000 l. per annum. Rented in Land (for feeding of Cattle, and for Hay) 900 l. annually, and by Gods blessing upon his Endeavours, had by his Industry gotten such an Estate, by which He and his Family lived comfortably and plenti­fully, whose Credit would have past without scruple for 3. or 4. thousand pounds: now to find him a Prisoner, his Estate pluckt a­way from him by Knavery, Injustice, Perjury, and Subornation there­to, Forgery, and Counterfeiting his Name and Person, by which means he is damnified at the least 8000 l. besides what by his In­dustry in this time he might have got thereby, in his way of dealing, for want of which money (although he hath made legal recovery of the greatest part of it) he hath Contracted some Debts, which he is unable to satisfie, unless he might have his due from others, one of which Debts due to him upon Judgement (if paid) would dis­charge every real Creditor that could justly make demand of moneys from him.

But in stead of payment, these honest Debtors to Dawson, have all combined together in a mutual engagement never to discharge one Farthing, yet are men of able Estates, Portington a man responsible, detaining 1297 l. 13 s. 4 d. for above 12. years, and putting Daw­son to at least 1000 l. charge first and last, in recovering and defend­ing that Judgement against him: In Execution for which, although he hath been 10. years and upwards, one of Sr. John Lenthall [...] (fast and loose) prisoners, yet so he is resolved rather to dye, than to pay a Farthing of this Debt; Read also, against whom Dawson hath re­covered 718l. for his deceitful seizing his Goods by vertue of a Warrant of Attorney (which was satisfied) and 500 l. against him, and other his Confederates, for Dammages sustained by a Commis­sion of Bankruptship, sued out against Dawson, upon a forged War­rant to confesse a Judgement, as hath at large been declared, yet he boasts that (rather than pay a Groat) he will rot in prison, though he hath at command several thousand pounds to maintain him, which with his Land he will so make over to Feoffees in trust, that the Plaintiff shall never get penny, not know how to find his Estate: And although at another time he took away a thousand pounds worth of the Goods of Dawson, upon a forged Judgment; In disprove­ing of which, and discovering the Forgery, Perjury, and Subornation to Perjury, committed therein, it cost Dawson several hundred [Page 29] pounds, and though the order of Court were, that upon disproving that Warrant to be real, the Goods levied in Execution should be returned to the Owner of the same, yet he hath not yet received nor can get the least satisfaction therefore; Nor will the Sheriff of Norfolk make return of that Writ of Execution, upon which he took away the Goods of Dawson, and sold them almost two years since; To which oppressions may be added the giving away a Judgement of 805 l. recovered against Binks, by Nabbs, upon Commission granted him by Lenthal, then Master of the Rolles, to hear and determine that Cause without appeal, which he determined without hearing Dawson, or any Witnesse, Counsellor, or Sollicitor in his behalf, giving away moreover, besides the Debt, 200 l. and upwards for Costs.

And lastly Edward Luttrell upon pretence of securing Dawson from the like future plots of Read, and his complices, with promise (as hath been related) of paying Dawsons real Debts, and bringing an overplus into his purse, for the maintenance of him, his Wife, and Family, hath cheated him of all he had left, his Brother and he now comply­ing with Read and Portington not only to defraud, but to grind and squeeze Dawson, and bring him to utter ruine, (a bad requital of the many years kindnesses shewed by Richard to Edward, whom he kept from starving) who now if it lay in his power would starve him and his.

And that the falsehood and basenesse of these two Brothers in ini­quity may be made more evident, besides the ingratitude of Edward, which according to the Aphorism in Ethicks (Ingratum si dixeris om­nia dixisti▪) includes all that can be spoken evil concerning any person; it will not be amiss to hint in brief, the remarkable honesty of the Counsellor Francis, who being summoned by Richard at the Tryal between him and his Brother Edward, concerning the Debt of thirty pounds, due upon Sale of a Coach, at which Deed of Sale, Francis was present, and ordred the making thereof, and thereupon accepted 5 l. from his Brother Edward, which was due to him from Dawson, yet he against his own Conscience and Knowledge, swore that the Deed was there made fraudulently, for the defrauding of some Creditors, which Edward upon a former Deed of Sale (of Hay and Leases of pa­sture ground) made to him by Richard, had a year before, undertaken to discharge, yet Francis upon Oath declared, that to Evade those Debts, the Coach was only colourably made over to Edward in trust, and no otherwise, to be redelivered upon demand at the pleasure of [Page 30] Dawson; At the time of making which Oath, all of the Long Robe present in Court, blessed themselves to hear him so swear, the Judge telling him openly, that Oath could not be true, or if it were, it would argue himself to be a very Knave: not long after which Tryal the Coach was sold, and the mony shar'd, but not a penny paid either to Dawson or his Order. Now what Justice can be expected against such persons, that can, and dare so swear, let the World Judge▪

Nor was this only a failing at that present in the Counsellor Francis, but according to the relation of his Brother Edward, to Dawson (in the hearing of several persons,) Francis the Counsellor, made offer to him (the said Edward) of 300 l. sterling, conditional­ly, that he should make Oath against Sir Allein Appesly, that he was one in Sir George Booths design, in those times to have brought both the life of that worthy person into danger, and confiseated his Estate, which he in his conceit was just grasping, only wanted such a despe­rate swearer, fully to accomplish this intended Villany; from whom, and such as he is, God of his Mercy deliver each honest man.

For of late Edward Luttrell, hath gone from party to party, with whom Dawson had formerly any dealing, to procure them to enter Actions against him, and several with whom he never had to do, nor doth know the persons, have by his perswasion, and Reads, brought a­gainst Dawson great Actions, upon which (to the number of 30 and upwards amounting to the Sum of about 1600 l.) he is now deteined Prisoner, of which there is not an hundred pounds due; but some of the parties dead two years since, in whose names Actions are now brought, others satisfied as long time agoe, nor know of the entring any such Actions at their Suit; others never known to, or heard of by the Defendant Dawson, yet have Actions against him, (viz.) 560 l. pretended to be due upon Bond, unto William Marriot and Thomas Bre [...]tford, of whom he never had knowledge, much lesse dealing with them. Also 200 l. entred at the several Suits of Thomas Osborne, and John Bates, with whom likewise Dawson never had dealing, be­sides other Fob'd Actions, too tedious to name particularly.

The greater part of which were not charged upon Dawson at his first imprisonment, although then the Luttrels, Read, and their Confederates boasted, they had him fast for his life time. To ac­complish which design (to their power) Sir John Lenthal (with whom Dawson never had to do, more than to sue him for the wilfull escape of Portington, whereby he is damnified at least 1500 l.) this last Easter Term, 1661. by Habeas Corpus, fetch'd him over to his [Page 31] prison, where he was loaded with fob'd Actions, to hinder his pro­secution of that escape of Portington, and the several in [...]ictments of perjury, which are found against Read, and such as were suborned by him, and his procurement, among whom one is an Enginee [...] to, and Servant of Sir John Lenthal, that keeps many such Cattle, who it is to be feared, serve his turn in the like Cases, oftner, than I hope will hereafter be suffered, or else woe to those whom he and others of such Conscience design to ruine. From which prison with very great costs and charges (which were encreased by the number of feigned Actions) Dawson was compelled to remove himself back to the Fleet, not accounting his person safe, in the Kings Bench Prison, where the Keeper is so great a Confederate with his most malicious implacable Adversaries.

HAving thus, with as much brevity as I could, related my great grievances, under which I have long groaned, and for remedy whereof I have tryed many wayes (for divers years) both in Law and Equity; But by reason of the Corruption of former times, the power, and number of my Adversaries, and mine own inability (at length) to pro­secute them in a Legal Course, being reduced by these long oppressures, to great streights, and at present a Prisoner, loaded with many Malicious Forged Actions, to hinder my Liberty, upon reasonable security such as my present conditition will afford me to procure.

Some of my Creditors by the instigation of Read, Portington, and the Luttrells, having prosecuted me to Judgement, and charged me in Execution thereupon, only to hinder my going abroad without charge of an Habeas Corpus, or Day Writ, which (with the allowance for a keep­er, Chamber-rent and Outgoing Fees) amounting to at least 10 or 12 s. each day, is so great a burthen, that while I am so Confined, or have Liberty at such rates, I can expect nothing but utter ruine to my self, and all that are neerly related, and dear unto me.

Wherefore all other hopes failing me, the last remedy, left me, is to fly unto the shelter of the most Honourable, the Lords and Commons in Par­liament now Assembled, to spread (most Humbly) my Cause before them, and with all possible Submission to Beg and Implore their Gracious Help and Assistance.

My Case Right Honourable Lords, and Worthy Gentlemen, although private, is not of private Concernment, nor bounded within private limits, for as Read hath dealt by me, and mine, so hath he dealt by divers others, twenty Families at least I could name, whom by the like A [...]ts he hath [Page 32] ruined and destroyed, and several fellow-Prisoners I meet with daily, oppressed by the same courses of injustice, false Oaths, counterfeit War­rants for confessing Judgments, false Actions, under which they are de­tained, &c. by which wayes of unjust vexation, together with the ex­cessive, unreasonable charges which (through the corruption of times) now accompany imprisonment, many are reduced to that extremity that they want for the conveniences of life, much more unable are they, by any means of addresse to seek for relief.

My Lords and Gentlemen; You are your selves the fathers of Chil­dren, whom God long preserve and blesse; Howbeit none of you can pro­mise to them a future immunity from the like miseries, unlesse this Cockatrice-Egge of corruption and injustice be crushed, which no foot, but such a foot of Authority can do. These unjust vexatious, Law Suits, or rather Law Cheats, bringing sweet gain to very many, who though they will not openly defend, yet will connive at such practises, so lucrife­rous and beneficial to themselves, and their dependants.

But considering there is legal profit sufficient, allowed to all honest Mi­nisters of Justice, and what comes in this way, is squeezed out of the heart blood of his Majesties most faithful Subjects, thousands of whom have been ruined in their Estates, Credit, or both, by such illegal proceedings. My case also being so grossely and fouly exemplary, that it causeth a­mazement in all who hear it: I doubt not, but that your Honours and Wisdomes will think of a way of relief, as for all the like oppressures in general, so for your most humble Supplicant in particular, that we may have cause (from our hearts) to blesse God for the happy change of times, when our bowels shall be refreshed, our miseries considered, and out unjust vexatious oppressures relieved, by your power, prudence, and justice.

I shall not dare to prescribe any means to so grave, wise, and honour­able a Council, but with all humble submission expect and wait for such a remedy as shall appear meet to your judicious breasts, praying the great God (who sits in your Assembly,) so to assist you with his blessing from above, that you may your selves become a blessing to this Kingdome, a Sanctuary to the distressed, a defence against wrongs and injustice, and a refreshment in particular, to

Your poor ruined Petitioner, (if not by your Piety and justice relieved) RICHARD DAWSON▪

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