A PROCLAMATION, Against Conventicles.

CHARLES, by the grace of GOD King of great Britain, France and Ireland, defender of the Faith,
To [...] Macers, or Messengers at armes, our Sheriffs in that part, conjunctly and severallie, specially constitute Greiting,

Forasmuch as by severall Laws and Acts of Parliament, and special­ly by the fifth Act of the second Session of this current Parliament, all unwarrantable meetings and Con­venticles either in houses or in the fields, upon pretence of Religion and religious exercises, are prohibited and discharged, under certain great pains and penalties: which Act hitherto hath not received that obedience which was due thereunto; In regard the Lords of Our Privy Councill, the Sheriffes of Shires, and o­ther Judges to whom the execution thereof is committed, have not had that information from the Heri­tors, in whose bounds these Conventicles were keeped, and others; which was necessary, that the persons guilty might be proceeded against according to Law: And seing we are fully resolved to use all possible means for making the said Act effectuall, being of great concernment to Religion, and the peace of this Church and Kingdome: And it being the duty of all our good Subjects not only to give obedience to Our Laws, by their own peaceable and orderly deportment; But likewise in these places where they have power and interest, to use their endeavoures for preventing and suppressing such unwarrantable and disorderly practices, as Conventicles are, being so farr contrair to Law, and destructive of the publick peace: And in order thereto, to give timous notice of any such Meetings keeped within their bounds when the same comes to their knowledge. OUR Will is herefore, and We charge you straitly and command, that in continent these Our Let­ters seen, ye passe, and in Our Name and Authority command and charge all Heritors, Liferenters and propper Wodsetters of Lands in this Kingdome to be carefull, that no house or field Conventicle, upon pret [...]u [...]e of, or for Religious exercise or worship, be keeped within the bounds of the respective Lands belonging to them: and in case any shall be keeped in any part of their Lands, so soon as they shall have notice thereof, that they immediatly give information of the same, of the persons present thereat, and other circumstances thereof sua farr as consists in their knowledge, to one of Our Privy Councellors, or to the Sheriffe of the Shire, Stewart of the Stewartrie, Lord or Baillie of the Regality or Royalty, or their Deputes within whose jurisdiction the Lands or Houses, where the Conventicle was keeped, do ly certify­ing such Heritors, and others foresaids, who shall know of any Conventicles keeped upon any part of their Lands, or in any Houses there­intill, and shall not discover the same, and what they know thereof, to the Sheriffes and other Magistrates aforesaids, or their Deputes, with­in the space of three dayes after the same comes to their knowledge, that they shall be fyned for each Conventicle, not delated by them, in the fourt part of the yearly valued rent of the whole Lands belonging to them in Heritage, Liferent or propper Wodset, within the Shire where the Conventicle shall be keeped, and we do hereby strictly require the Sheriffes of Sheriffdomes, Stewarts of Stewartries, Lords and Baillies of Regalities or Royalties and their Deputes, upon delation made of Conventicles by the Heritors, or information given by any other persons thereanent, to proceed to the tryall thereof, and to put the foresaid Act of Parliament to due and vigorous execution. And We do hereby Authorize and require the Sheriffs and other Magistrates foresaids and their Deputes, to call before them such Heritors, Liferenters and propper Wodseters, who shall know of any Conventicles keeped in their Lands, and shall not discover the same, within the space foresaid, and (their knowledge thereof being proven, either by their own oaths, or other Legall probation,) to inflict upon them the foresaid fyne, whereof one third part, to be applyed for the use of the saids Judges; another third part to the person who shall give in­formation concerning these Heritors, and a third part thereof to be uplifted for Our use: And it is hereby declared, that if the saids Sheriffs and other Judges foresaids, and their Deputes shall be remiss and negligent in performance of their dutie in the premises, they shall be called before Our Privy Councill, and severely punished. And it is hereby declared, that as for any Conventicles that shall happen to be keeped within Burghs Royall, the Magistrates of the Burghs shall be lyable to such fynes for every such Conventicle as Our Councill shall think fit to impose, and that the Master or Mistris of the house where the Conventicle shall be keeped, and the persons present there­at, shall relieve the Magistrates, as Our Councill shall order the same, conform to the foresaid fifth Act of the second Session of this present Parliament, intituled, Act against Conventicles: And We ordain these presents to be Printed and published at the Market Cross of Edin­burgh, and at the Market Crosses of the head Burghs, of the severall Shires, and that likewise the Shireffs and other Magistrates foresaids, and their Deputes cause intimate the same at the severall Paroch Churches within their respective Jurisdictions, that none pretend ignorance: The which to do we commit to you conjunctly and severally Our full power, be thir Our letters, delivering them be you duely execute and indorsat again to the Bearer.

Al. Gibson, Cl. Sti Concilij.

GOD save the KING.

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