Cavalier Ballad; Sir Francis Wortley, Knight and Baronet, Prisoner. (Sept. 16th, 1647)
God save the best of kings, King Charles!|
The best of queens, Queen Mary!
The ladies all, Gloster and Yorke,
Prince Charles, so like old harry! (1)
God send the King his own again,
His towre and all his coyners!
And blesse all kings who are to reigne,
From traytors and purloyners!
The King sent us poor traytors here
(But you may guesse the reason)
Two brace of bucks to mend the cheere,
Is't not to eat them treason?
2. Let Selden search Cotton's records,
3. But that you may these traytors know,
4. The first and chiefe a marquesse (2) is,
5. The next a worthy bishop (4) is,
6. The next to him is a Welsh Judge, (5)
7. Frank Wortley (6) hath a jovial soule,
8. Sir Edward Hayles (7) was wond'rous rich,
9. Old Sir George Strangways (8) he came in,
10. Honest Sir Berr's a reall man,
11. Sir Benefield, (9) Sir Walter Blunt,
12. Jack Hewet (11) will have wholesome meat,
13. Gallant Sir Thomas, (12) bold and stout
14. Sir Lewis (13) hath an able pen,|
Can cudgell a committee;
He makes them doe him reason, though
They others do not pitty.
Brave Cleaveland had a willing minde,
Frank Wortley was not able,
But Lewis got foure pound per weeke
For's children and his table.
15. Giles Strangwayes (14) has a gallant soul,
16. Sir John Marlow's (16) a loyall man
17. Will Morton's (18) of that Cardinal's race,
18. Tom Conisby (19) is stout and stern,
19. But I Win. Bodnam (20) had forgot,
20. Sir Henry Vaughan (21) looks as grave
21. John Lilburne (22) is a stirring blade,
22. Tom Violet (23) swears his injuries
23. Poore Hudson (24) of all was the last,
24. Else Hudson had gone to the pot,
25. We'll then conclude with hearty healths
26. This if you will rhyme dogrell call,
(1) Henry the Eighth. The comparison is made in other ballads of
the age. To play old Harry with any one is a phrase that seems to
have originated with those who suffered by the confiscation of
(2) The Marquis of Winchester, the brave defender of his house at Basing, had been made prisoner by Cromwell at the storming of that house in 1645. Waller had been foiled in his attempt on this place in the year preceding. - T. W.
(3) Sir John Ogle, one of the Royalist commanders, who was intrusted with the defence of Winchester Castle, which he surrendered on conditions just before the siege of Basing House. - T. W.
(4) Wren, bishop of Ely, was committed to the Tower in 1641, accused with high "misdemeanours" in his diocese.
(5) David Jenkins, a Welsh Judge, who had been made prisoner at the taking of Hereford, and committed first to Newgate and afterwards to the Tower. He refused to acknowledge the authority of the Parliament, and was the author of several tracts published during the year (while he was prisoner in the Tower), which made a great noise. - T. W.
(6) Sir Francis Wortley, Bart., was made a prisoner in 1644, at the taking of Walton House, near Wakefield, by Sir Thomas Fairfax.
(7) Sir Edward Hales, Bart., of Woodchurch, in Kent, had been member for Queenborough in the Isle of Sheppey. He was not a Royalist.
(8) Sir George Strangways, Bart., according to the marginal note in the original. Another of the name, Sir John Strangways, was taken at the surrender of Sherborne Castle.
(9) Sir Henry Bedingfield, Bart., of Norfolk; Sir Walter Blount, Bart., of Worcester; and Sir Francis Howard, Bart., of the North, were committed to the Tower on the 22nd of January, 1646.
(10) The horrible barbarities committed by the Irish rebels had made the Catholics so much abhorred in England, that every English member of that community was suspected of plotting the same massacres in England. - T. W.
(11) Sir John Hewet, of Huntingdonshire, was committed to the Tower on the 28th of January, 1645(-6).
(12) Sir Thomas Lunsford, Bart., the celebrated Royalist officer, was committed to the Tower on the 22nd of January, 1646. The violence and barbarities which he and his troop were said to have perpetrated led to the popular belief that he was in the habit of eating children.
From Fielding and from Vavasour,
Loyal Songs, ed. 1731, i. 38.
(13) Sir William Lewis, one of the eleven members who had been
impeached by the army.
(14) Col. Giles Strangwaies, of Dorsetshire, taken with Sir Lewis Dives, at the surrender of Sherborne, was committed to the Tower on the 28th August, 1645. He was member for Bridport in the Long Parliament, and was one of those who attended Charles's "Mongrel" Parliament at Oxford.
(15) Sir Lewis Dives, an active Royalist, was governor of Sherborne Castle for the King, and had been made a prisoner by Fairfax in August, 1645, when that fortress was taken by storm. He was brother-in-law to Lord Digby.
(16) Sir John Morley, of Newcastle, committed to the Tower on the 18th of July, 1645.
(17) King was a Royalist general, in the north, who was slain July, 1643.
(18) Sir William Morton, of Gloucestershire, committed to the Tower on the 17th August, 1644. Cardinal Morton, Archbishop of Canterbury, brought about the marriage between King Henry VII. and the daughter of Edward IV., and thus effected the unison of the rival houses of York and Lancaster.
(19) Thomas Coningsby, Esq., of Northmyus in Hertfordshire, committed to the Tower in November, 1642, for reading the King's commission of array in that county.
(20) Sir Wingfield Bodenham, of the county of Rutland, committed to the Tower on the 31st of July, 1643.
(21) Sir Henry Vaughan, a Welsh knight, committed to the Tower on the 18th July, 1645.
(22) Lilburn was, as has been observed, in the Tower for his practices against the present order of things, he being an advocate of extreme democratic principles; and he was there instructed in knotty points of law by Judge Jenkins, to enable him to torment and baffle the party in power. It was Jenkins who said of Lilburne that "If the world were emptied of all but John Lilburne, Lilburne would quarrel with John, and John with Lilburne." - T. W.
(23) Mr Thomas Violet, of London, goldsmith, committed to the Tower January 6th, 1643(-4), for carrying a letter from the King to the mayor and common council of London.
(24) Dr Hudson had been concerned in the King's transactions with the Scots, previous to his delivering himself up to them, and he and Ashburnham had been his sole attendants in his flight from Oxford for that purpose. - T. W.
A Loyall Song of the Royall Feast kept by the Prisoners in the Towre, August last, with the Names, Titles, and Characters of every Prisoner.
"In the negotiations between the King and the Parliament during the summer and autumn of this year," says Mr Thomas Wright in his Political Ballads of the Commonwealth, published for the Percy Society, "the case of the royalist prisoners in the Tower was frequently brought into question. The latter seized the occasion of complaining against the rigours (complaints apparently exaggerated) which were exerted against them, and on the 16th June, 1647, was published 'A True Relation of the cruell and unparallel'd Oppression which hath been illegally imposed upon the Gentlemen Prisoners in the Tower of London.'
The several petitions contained in this tract have the signatures of Francis Howard, Henry Bedingfield, Walter Blount, Giles Strangwaies, Francis Butler, Henry Vaughan, Thomas Lunsford, Richard Gibson, Tho. Violet, John Morley, Francis Wortley, Edw. Bishop, John Hewet, Wingfield Bodenham, Henry Warren, W. Morton, John Slaughter, Gilbert Swinhow."
On the 19th of August (according to the Moderate Intelligencer of that date) the King sent to the royal prisoners in the Tower two fat bucks for a feast. This circumstance was the origin of the present ballad.
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