TO THE SUPREAME AVTHORITY The Parliament of the Common-wealth of England, The Humble Petition of many well afected People inhabitng the City of London, Westminster, Southwark and parts adjacent, in be­halfe of the just Liberties of the Common-wealth, highly concerned in the sentence against Lieutenant Col. JOHN LILBURN.


THat if the many sold Services, and extreame Sufferings, of Lieutenant Colonell John Lilburne, in oposition to Tyrany, and Oppression, and how instrumentall he hath been in the removall of divers sorts of oppressiors, his wonderfull Deliverances and clear acquitments by legall Tryalls, from all former accusations, without the least stayne to his reputation, if all these could be forgotten, and that he stood in our thoughts, but as the meanest of well affected persons, (and such at the least we must allow him, having in all times adhered to Parliaments) yet in your late proceedings towards him, and heavy censure upon him, wee aprehend our native rights so much concerned that wee never conceived a greater cause of speedy application to you, for re­dress then upon this sad occasion.

For certainly, it cannot be denied, but if he be really an offender, he is such by the breach of some law, made and published be­fore the fact, and ought by due processe of Law, and verdict of twelve men to be thereof convict, and found guilty of such Crime, unto which the Law also hath prescribed such a punishment agreeable to that our fundamentall Liberty, which enjoyneth, that no freeman of England, should be adjudged of Life, Limbe, Liberty, or Estate but by Juries; a fredome which Parliaments in all ages Contended to preserve from violation as the Birthright, and Chief inheritance of the People, as may appeare most remar­kably in the Petition of Right, which you have stiled that most excellent Law.

And therefore we trust upon second thoughts (being the Parliament of England,) you will be so far from bereaving us, (who have never forfeited our rights) of this our native right, and way of Tryalls by Juryes, (for what is done unto any one may be done unto every one) that you will preserve them entire to us, and to posterity, from the encroachments of any, that would inovate upon them.

And if the originall of the unhapy differences betweene Sir Arthur Haslerig, and Mr. Lilburne, be duly weighed (being as wee are informed) it will appear, that Sr. Arthurs stoppage of monies due to Mr. Lilburn without Legall process, was the first occasion thereof.

And it is believed, that if Mr. Primats cause, (wherein Sr. Arthur, and Mr. Lilburne have been ingaged: had at any time either at first or last been admitted to a Tryall at law, and had passed any way by verdict of twelve sworne men; all the trouble and incon­veniencs arising thereupon had been prevented: the way of determination by Major votes of Committees, being neither so certaine nor so satisfactory in any case as by way of Juries, the benefit of Challenges and Exceptiones, and unanimous Consent, being all essentiall Priveledges in the latter: whereas Committees' are tyed to noe such rules, but are at liberty to be present or absent at plea­sure; besides Juries being birthright, and the other but new and temporary, men doe not, nor as (wee humbly conceive ever will) acquiesse in the one as on the other from whence, it is not all together so much to be wondered at, if upon dissatisfactions, there have been such frequent printing of mens cases, and dealings of Committees, as there have been, and such harsh and inordinate heats, and expressions between partyes interested, such sudden and importunate appeales to your Authority, being indeed all alike out of the true English roade, and leading into nothing but trouble and perplexity, breeding hatred and enmityes betweene worthy families, affronts and disguste betweene persons of the same publique affection and interest, and to the rejoycing of none but pub­lique adversaryes, all which and many more inconveniencies can only be avoyded, by referring all such cases to the usuall tryalls and finall determination of law

And whereas you have consured Mr. Lilburne 7000 l. fine, and to perpetual Panishment, and to dye as a fellon if he return, we are excedingly afflicted in our spirits thereby, not onely because he hath not had the usuall way of tryall by Jury which yet weighs very much with us, nor for that we beleeve he hath followed Mr. Primats cause out of strong perswasion of the justnesse thereof, (the Cause in it selfe as we have been informed being very intricate and hard to be understood, & so did not willfully or intentionally car­ry it on against his Conscience some of the Commissioners wishing to God it had therefore never came before them, nor for that we believe him innocent of any wilfull breach of Parliament priviledge, in delivering printed Petitions, before the original was presented unto you, that being never before published, to be a breach, though all these adde to our grief, yet the main or our affliction ariseth from the destructivenesse of the Sentence, and as being therein contrary to that other our fundamentall native right, which injoyns that Fines should have regard to the qualities of the persons: a plowman saving his wainage, and a merchant his merchandise, whereas this if relating to his estate, we believe is so farre from preserving him in his quality, as that it leaves himself, his wife and children without su­stenance, if in relation to his person, his affection to Parliaments, and zeal to publick freedome, renders all forreign Nations so unsafe to him, as that in effect he is banished into a Wildernesse, and exposed naked to the fury of bears and lions.

The premises duly weighed, and for that (as we are informed) the parties accused and censured, have had no means to see what report hath been made by the Honorable Committee, nor have had the liberty of exceptions thereunto, in like Cases granted, and in that many well affected people that heard the Debates, and Evidences on both sides, are unsatisfied both in point of possession, and title to rhe Collary in question, that the honor of Parliament may stand immaculate, our native fundamentall rights inviolable, and all those Gentlemen concerned in this Cause left, without any the least grudging, or just complaint.

We have deemed our selves bound in Conscience in most humble manner to intreat

I. That you will be pleased to recall your forementioned grievous Sentence upon Lieutenant Col. John Lilburn, and the rest concerned therein.

II. To give free liberty to Mr Primate to prosecute his Cuase, both for Title, and possession at the Common Law, and therein to make use of what counsell he shall think fit.

III. That Sir Arthur Haslerig be referred to take his course at Law, for whatsoever injuries conceived to be done unto him by Lieutenant Col. John Lilburn or any others, as was granted in Mr. Musgraves Case with the said Sir Arthur, and that Mr. Lilburn or any others may have the same liberty against Sir Arthur, if they conceive any cause.

IV. That you will appoint some speedy course for the receiving and answering of Petitions, that so men through long atten­dance be not enforced unto wayes displeasing or inconvenient.

V. That you will very tenderly regain, and maintain every one of our fundamentall Native rights, as you would the very being and just constitution of Parliaments, that being a principall part of our Native rights.

Lastly, That you will be pleased to conceive rightly of this our humble application to you at this time upon this weighty occasi­on, and to admit no harsh construction, or sinister suggestion thereupon, but to believe that in the sincerity of our consciences, we have aimed onely herein at the glory of God, the honour, peace, and safety of Parliament and Common-wealth. And if by your favourable acceptance we shall be made any wayes instrumentall to those just ends, it shall dissolve us into true thankfulnesse, And is in duty bound,

shall ever pray, &c.

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