April 1690

For background information about the diaries and their transcribers see Introduction

April ye 1st, 1690. A very fayr day. I walk’t to and din’d att Penwortham [Priory]. We went to see some men fishing a marlepond, but gott little fish. They found a Hellmett in ye sluch. Captaine Parker [possibly Thomas Parker of Browsholme who, according to one source was appointed a captain of foot in 1660] came to us. He went wth us to the ale house. Nabby is very ill of ye tooth ach.

Ye 2d. A fayr day. Mr. Hilton [see 27 October 1688] came hither. He sayes all matters goe on well between ye K and Parl. We din’d att Cousen Johnson’s.

Ye 3d. A very fayr day. I visited Mr Bostock, who lies dangerously ill. I view’d ye lodgings att Tophams, and got a bill of £10 from Mr. Chaddock to be payd in London by Mr. flavell, merchs [not identified].

Ye 4th. A gloomy day. I was wth Mr. Farrington [probably Henry Farington] and Swetnam not identified]. Wrote severall letters. Was wth ye Mayor of lerpoole [William, son of Capt Clayton of Fulwood]. Wm Bellingham came to town. I was some time wth him, and was late wth ye Sherriffe [Peter Bold]. R. Bostock dy’d.

Ye 5th. Windy weather, judge Ventris came in here this day, din’d att Mr. Pattens, and was treated wth a banquett by ye Mayor and town. Att night 2 Irish men, James Doran and Tho Bourke, were seiz’d as suspicious persons. They had letters about them to Sr James Poole, Sr Rowland Stanly, Sr Wm Creagh, and to young Mr. Mollineaux. They were examin’d aparte. They differ’ d in theyr examinations and produc’d a counterfeite certificate under Rich. Engolsbys hand. They are secur’d and confin’d.
The letters were addressed to leading Catholics in the region.
Sir James Poole and Sir Rowland Stanley are so described in footnotes in the diary of the Thomas Cartwright, Bishop of Chester:

Sir James Poole was the head of the Roman Catholic family of Poole, of Poole, in the hundred of Wirral. Sir Rowland Stanley was another Cheshire baronet, seated in the same parish of Eastham, at Hooton , and also a Roman Catholic. The Mr. Massey, at whose house the bishop dined, must have been the neighbour of the Pooles and the Stanleys, Massey of Podington, the head of another of the great Roman Catholic families of the hundred of Wirral …’[1]

Sir William Creagh was a Catholic Irishman who ‘enjoyed the doubtful favour of James II’, who made him mayor of Newcastle in 1687. [2] Young Mr Mollineaux was probably the son of Viscount Molyneux.
Engolsby would have been Richard Ingoldsby, who had been serving in Ireland where he had succeeded his uncle as colonel of a foot regiment. [3]

[1] Thomas Cartwright, The Diary of Dr. Thomas Cartwright, Bishop of Chester: Commencing at the Time of His Elevation to That See, August M.DC.LXXXVI, and Terminating with the Visitation of St. Mary Magdalene College, Oxford, October M.DC.LXXXVII, ed. Joseph Hunter (Camden Society, 1843), 23. https://books.google.co.uk/books?id=8fwUAAAAQAAJ
[2] John Crawford Hodgson, North Country Diaries (Second Series), vol. 124 (Durham: Surtees Society, 1915), 181, fn. 14, http://archive.org/details/northcountrydiar00hodgrich.
[3] H. M. Chichester and Kenneth Ferguson, ‘Ingoldsby, Richard (1664/5–1712), Army Officer’, Oxford Dictionary of National Biography, n.d., https://doi.org/10.1093/ref:odnb/14412; Charles Dalton, English Army Lists and Commission Registers, 1661-1714, vol. 3: 1689-1694 (London: Eyre & Spottiswoode, 1904), 78, http://archive.org/details/englisharmylists03dalt.

Ye 6th. High western wind. We had ye Kings letter [?] and the statutes and Homily read in ye Church against Drunkenness. R. Bostock was buryed.

Ye 7th. divers weathers. I walk’t wth Mr Green and Chaddoc. One Edwards, a 3d person who was in company of Bourke and Doran, came to town and was examin’d. He proves an honest man. All theyr Portmanteaus were open’d and some letters were found, but of little consequence.
Bellingham’s view that the letters were ‘of little consequence’ conflicts with his entry for 5 April.

Ye 8th. Very fayr. I saw Loxam’s horse heat att Penwortham marsh. I din’d there, and saw a battle ragad between 4 cocks. Capt Clayton had a letter that gave an account how ill a condition K. Ja. army was in Ireland, and of 4 Regiments of French being landed there.
Loxam could be the Mr John Loxam who appears frequently in the court leet records from about this time and was mayor in 1709. [1]

[1] David Berry, trans., ‘Preston Court Leet Records’, accessed 29 January 2017, http://c5110394.myzen.co.uk/mw/index.php?title=Main_Page.

Ye 9th. Very fayr. I walk’d to young Mr. Farringtons, and din’d there. After went to ye ale-house in Lealand, and came home early.

Ye 10th. High wind. I tooke Physick, wch wrought well. I was visited by severall friendes. Nabby walk’d wth Mrs. Gregson [probably the wife of the town clerk Josiah Gregson] to Walton.

Ye 11th. Storm and some showers. This being ye anniversary of ye coronation of K Wm and Q Ma was kept here by ringing of ye bells, bonefires, etc. Ye Mayor treated att Rattcliffes. I began my steele course [17th-century medication].
At this period, ‘Therapeutic remedies often called for phlebotomy, vomits, and purgers, followed by “a Steel Course” of chalybeate pills or medicines (i.e. infused with iron), along with moderate exercise’. [1]

[1] Wendy D. Churchill, Female Patients in Early Modern Britain: Gender, Diagnosis, and Treatment (Routledge, 2016), 108, https://books.google.co.uk/books?id=RPoFDAAAQBAJ.

Ye 12th. High winds. I walk’d to see cous Johnson mare foal. We were wth Mr. Hodgkinson att ye ale, and sup’t att my sister’s [Anne Bickerton].

Ye 13th. Windy, but fayr. Coll Rawstorne had a letter from my Ld Brandon to keep ye Irish men close prisoners [the two mentioned above]. Mr. Bland preach’t an excellent, incentive to courage. Mr. Greenfeild pay’d his way.

Ye 14th. Very fayr and warme. I was wth Major Noell. Mr. Greenfeild and Sudall [probably Roger Sudell] went to London.

Ye 15th. Very fayr. I saw ye horse heat – 9 minutes 4 mile. I walk’d to Walton wth Dr Lee, and after view’d Burkell’s engine [?] for great guns to approach wthout danger of ye engineers . Mr Chaddock came home and tell us that ye Dover and St. Albans came into Highlake and brought 2 prizes taken off Ireland wth some officers and soldiers.

Ye 16th. fyne wth some small showers. Ye monthly fast very solemnly observ’d. Mr Langton [probably Richard Langton] came from Lerpoole and brought a letter from Bell of Dublin to ald: Squire [neither identified]

Ye 17th. fayr but windy. I went to meete Mr. Fleetwood att ye marsh. Coll Matthews came to town. Cous Green had a quarrell wth one Attkinson [not identified] belonging to the navy. Words and blows happen’d and a great uproar was made. He tooke them before a magistrate. It is thought Sam Green was in drinke.

Ye 18th. Very fayr. I went wth Coll Matthewes to see Dore and Bourke. These Irishmen were taken att Lodge and att ye ashes and brought to town. I treated Collonell Matthewes att George Rattcliffes. Ye Sacramt adminstred.
The Ashes at Goosnargh was the home of the Threlfall family, Catholic gentry of whom the heir at this time, Edmund Threlfall, was a noted supporter of James II. He was killed at his home later in the year by a party of militia sent to arrest him. [1]

[1] Henry Fishwick, The History of the Parochial Chapelry of Goosnargh (Manchester: Charles Simms & Co, 1871), 163–65, https://books.google.co.uk/books?id=D-IHAAAAQAAJ&dq.

Ye 19th. Very fayr. A Dutch troop came to town. I was a little time wth Mr Farrington and others. I went to visit Dore, and found a Dutch trooper wth him, on whose toe he had trod when I came in.

Ye 20th. Very fayr. Very many Communicants (God be praysed). Mr. Bland made a very good sermon in ye afternoon. I walk’t wth Nabby a good while in Enam [Avenham] Garden. I sent a token to D. Bickerton [presumably some relation of his sister Anne, Hewitson suggests her nephew Daniel but gives no source].

Ye 21th. Still very fyne. One Dodsworth [not identified], a person who pretends to discover a plott of ye Papists, is come to this town. He insists much upon having money before he informes. I was wth Coll Matthewes, Major Longworth, etc., att Rattcliffes, and was in ye evening att Enam [Avenham], where my cousen W. B. [William Bellingham] treated ye women.

Ye 22th. Very fayr. Ye Dutch troop sent out a party to apprehend Papists, and brought in one Irish man, who had his wife wth him. In ye evening we had a bowl of Punch att ye mitre.

Ye 23th. Some showers towards evening. This day severall of ye gentlemen had a very good dinner att ye marsh, and bowld in ye afternoon. We had an account by one come from Chester that Sr Clouds Shovell [Sir Cloudesley Shovell] went into Dublin bay wth ye mounthmoth yatcht and his own pinnace, and brought thence a man of warr of 25 guns.

Ye 24th. Very fayr. In ye afternoon Cous W. B. [William Bellingham] and W. P. [William Patten] and I treated ye women att Walton.

Ye 25th. Very fayr. I went wth W. B. and W. P. to see Major Farrington, who lyes very ill of ye gout and stone. He tould us he had Beere of nine yeares old. We call’d on Mr. Dandy, and we came home, where W. B. and I saw a very comicall sight.

Ye 26th. Very fayr. I din’d wth Mr. Fleetwood and Coll Matthewes att Coll Rawstornes, where we were handsomely entertain’d, and after dinner were very merry att Rattliffs.

Ye 27th. Very hott weather. Mr. Gregory preach’t twice, and was att Church both times. Coll Matthewes in the evening. Nabby and I tooke a long walke. We had an acct by this dayes newes of great clashing in the house of Commons and it came to drawing of swords.

Ye 28th. Very fyn, but somewhat windy. Great cocking att Graystocks. I din’d wth Coll Matthewes att cous Johnsons. Mr. Luke King and Mr. Frankes came from London.
There are many references to persons named Graystock in the Preston Court Leet records, as well as to a Graystock Brook, which seems to have taken its name from one of those persons. Graystock, to judge from the court records, appears to have been the name given to the lower reaches of the Moor Brook. Several of the Graystocks lived in the vicinity. It is probable that the cock fight was held at the residence of one of those Graystocks.

Ye 29th. Very much raine about mid night and some showers in ye morning. I din’d wth Sr Edw Chisnall, who came here to stand for Burgess in the roome of ye Ld Willoughby, who is call’d to ye house of Lords. I went to ye marsh a cocking, and after was late wth Sr Edw Chisnall and Luke King.
The History of Parliament on line has the following, referring to the election the previous month in which Willoughby had been elected for Preston, beating Patten (see 13 March 1690):

[Thomas] Patten petitioned on 25 Mar., alleging partiality on behalf of the mayor and members of the corporation. Before any action could be taken, however, the matter was complicated by the elevation of Willoughby to the Lords, leaving open the question of whether a by-election could be ordered while Patten’s petition against Willoughby’s return was pending. No time was lost in making interest for what Willoughby’s supporters were sure would be a by-election, and by the end of April Willoughby, the 9th Earl of Derby, and the corporation had all indicated their support for local Tory Sir Edward Chisenhall, recently defeated at Wigan … Edward Rigby was persuaded by Derby to quit his interest to Chisenhall and by early May Chisenhall was treating in the borough. [1]

[1] ‘Preston | History of Parliament Online (1690-1715)’, n.d., http://www.historyofparliamentonline.org/volume/1690-1715/constituencies/preston.

Ye 30th. Very much raine most of this day. Sir Edw Chis went hence. I wrote by Campbell [not identified] to Ireland, and was in ye evening wth Cous B and Coll Rawstor.

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