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A Full ACCOUNT of a moſt Tragycal and Inhuman Murther, That was Committed lately in Holland, at Sevenbergen, 3 Hours Walk off the Brill, by One CLAES WELLS; Who murthered his Father, Henry Wells and his Mother; with 3 Brothers and one Siſter: And after ſat the Houſe on Fire, for which he was Executed, within 3 days after.

If ever there were a Subject that was capable of attracting the Wonder and infuting Amazement to all Mankind, I think this preſent Occaſion, will afford as large as ever happened in this World; and I am perſwaded, de­ſerves a moſt ſerious Conſideration both of too ſevere Parents, and too diſobedient and extravagant Sons. This diſmal Story being the effect of both thoſe ſad Errors, tho' indeed, even Nero's Cruelty is not comparable to that of this Monſter, nor the moſt exquiſite Torments, ſufficient to expiate ſuch a barbarous and unnatural Action, as will preſently appear.

THIS Claes Wells (by what I could learn) had received as large Education as his Father could poſſibly give him; and endowed him alſo with a ſufficient Wealth to live happily, and was for ſome time in a fair way of being a Comfort to his Aged Parents: But alas! Falling into bad Company and by its Temptations and Allurements, conſuming his Patrimony, he loſt the Favour of his Friends; and for 4 years paſt, would not re­ceive nor admit him in their Sight, till lately, when in Humility, ap­proaching and intreating his Mother, with Sighs and Tears, and a pretended Sorrow for his Offence, ſhe harboured him again; and uſed her utmoſt Efforts upon her Husband, but in vain, being by no Intreaties2 to be prevailed upon; His Brothers and Siſters Embraced him with a Joy not to be expreſſed, mingling with their Endearments a thouſand Kiſſes, and confirmed their Brotherly Affection by imploring on their Knees a Reconciliation with their Father; and that he would condeſcend an ad­miſſion to his preſence, but his Anger was too inveterate, and their Pray­ers proved ineffectual: So he was conveyed up Stairs, and being told of it, fell immediately into a Fit of Diſtraction. However, being qualifyed and Silence engaged, leſt his Father ſhould have known he was in the Houſe, and thereby incurred all their Ruin; when his Father went to Bed he came down, and Eat his Supper with a ſeeming Satisfaction; a­bout ten, going to reſt with his elder Brother, (they little thinking of his Deſign) at 12 a Clock, and being faſt aſleep, he cut his Throat firſt; and having a Dark Lanthorn; entred next unto the other Chamber, where 2 more of his Brothers lay, where he cut their Throats alſo; then he went into his Siſters, and cut her's; and laſtly come to his Father and Mo­ther, that received him, and cut her Throat, who ſtruggling, and awaking his Father, he Cryed out, Son, let me live, I'll give you all I have, but could not be prevailed upon; ſo ſtabbed him, and after, ſat Fire to the Houſe, which, allarming the Inhabitants, who ſecuring the Draw-Bridg­es of the Town, ſearch was made, and finding him; knowing the Grudge; charged him with it; which not having power to deny, was immediately conveyed to the Goal, where behaving himſelf with all the Outrages of a terrified Conſcience; as Curſing his whole Family, and crying out for Damnation; The whole Confeſſion in his moſt ſober Intervals were on­ly, That his Father was the Cauſe; When he came upon the Scaffold, and ſaw the Fate he was to ſuffer, he laughed at firſt, then Rav'd; the manner of his Execution being thus; It is the Cuſtom in Holland to exe­cute in the middle of the Town upon a Scaffold before the Stadthouſe; where was placed a large ſquare Hearth of Bricks, and a Fire being kind­led, this Malefactor was hanged up by his left Leg upon an Iron Gibbet, at ſome ſmall diſtance, and was waſted until he expired; The Spectators of this Tragedy, rather upbraided than pitied him, and the Tumult could hardly forbear tearing him Piece meal

This ſad Cataſtrophe may be a warning to Children, firſt to be Obedi­ent, and keep within bounds; but more particularly, to avoid bad Com­pany, which was the deſtruction of This, and is of many more Youths in England and elſewhere; And Secondly, to Parents, not too much by Severity to expoſe their Children to Want, and provoke them to Wrath; both being the Cauſes of ſuch direful Effects, 'tis hoped this Paper will be a Means to Cure the Licentiouſneſs of the former, and the Inveteracy of the latter.

Licens'd according to Order.

London, Printed by D. Edwards in Fetter-Lane. 1699.

About this transcription

TextA Full account of a most tragycal and inhuman murther that was committed lately in Holland, at Sevenbergen, 3 hours walk off the Brill, by one Claes Wells who murthered his father, Henry Wells and his mother, with 3 brothers and one sister, and after sat the house on fire, for which he was executed, within 3 days after.
Extent Approx. 5 KB of XML-encoded text transcribed from 2 1-bit group-IV TIFF page images.
SeriesEarly English books online.
Additional notes

(EEBO-TCP ; phase 2, no. A84950)

Transcribed from: (Early English Books Online ; image set 150056)

Images scanned from microfilm: (Early English books, 1641-1700 ; 2228:4)

About the source text

Bibliographic informationA Full account of a most tragycal and inhuman murther that was committed lately in Holland, at Sevenbergen, 3 hours walk off the Brill, by one Claes Wells who murthered his father, Henry Wells and his mother, with 3 brothers and one sister, and after sat the house on fire, for which he was executed, within 3 days after. 1 sheet (2 p.). Printed by D. Edwards in Fetter-Lane,London :1699.. (Caption title.) (Imprint from colophon.) (Reproduction of original in the Newberry Library.)
  • Wells, Claes, d. 1699?
  • Murder -- Netherlands -- Early works to 1800.
  • Broadsides -- London (England) -- 17th century.

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  • Text Creation Partnership,
ImprintAnn Arbor, MI ; Oxford (UK) : 2013-12 (EEBO-TCP Phase 2).
  • DLPS A84950
  • STC Wing F2262A
  • STC ESTC R42498
  • EEBO-CITATION 36282133
  • OCLC ocm 36282133
  • VID 150056

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