Wednesday, July 4, 2012

Execution of the Royalists

‘4th July, 1660. I heard Sir Samuel Tuke harangue to
the House of Lords, in behalf of the Roman Catholics,
and his account of the transaction at Colchester in mur-
dering Lord Capel, and the rest of those brave men, that
suffered in cold blood, after articles of rendition.’

Sir John Evelyn discusses Lord Capel  in his diary, on July 4th, 1660.  Sir Walter Scott published the following in “Tales of a Grandfather “  on this subject:

‘…The unfortunate Duke of Hamilton, a man of a gentle but indecisive character, was taken, as I have told you, in his attempt to invade England and deliver the King [Charles II], whom he seems to have served with fidelity, though he fell under his suspicion, and even suffered a long imprisonment by the royal order. While he was confined at Windsor, Charles, previous to his trial, was brought there by the soldiers. The dethroned King was permitted a momentary interview with the subject, who had lost fortune and liberty in his cause. Hamilton burst into tears, and flung himself at the King's feet, exclaiming, " My dear master!"—" I have been a dear master to you indeed," said Charles, kindly raising him. After the execution of the King, Hamilton, with the Earl of Holland, Lord Capel, and others, who had promoted the rising of the royalists on different points, were condemned to be beheaded. A stout old cavalier, Sir John Owen, was one of the number. When the sentence was pronounced, he exclaimed it was a great honour to a poor Welsh knight to be beheaded with so many nobles, adding, with an oath, "I thought they would have hanged me." This gallant old man's life was spared, when his companions in misfortune were executed…

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