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A NOTABLE PLOT DISCOVERED IN A LETTER SENT By an AGENT here in LONDON, TO The Earl of CLEVELAND at the HAGUE: SHEWING, How the ſaid AGENT ſet the Committee of Mincing-lane on worke, to procure an Act to put out all the old Officers of the Cuſtom-houſe, by which means the Cuſtomes will be deſtroyed.

Printed (together with a Liſt of the Names of the ſaid Committee, and of the Officers Caſhiered, and to be Caſhiered) for the Information of the Commons of England; Eſpecially ſuch as hold any Offices in the Kingdome.


To the Right Honourable The Earle of CLEVELAND, at the Hague theſe preſent.

My Lord,

IN my laſt of the 15 of April, I gave your Lordſhip an Accompt how Affaires then ſtood in the Cuſtome-houſe at London, and what I conceived would be the Iſſue in relation to thoſe many Par­ticulars then ſignified unto your Lordſhip: ſince which time, things have fallen according to our owne hearts deſire, the Gentlemen at Weſtminſter having turn'd out all the cunning Knaves or old Officers at the Cuſtome-houſe for the Port of London, without ſo much as giving them any Charge of their Delinquency: Their Names are, Sir John Jacobs, Sir Thomas Dawes, Mr. Jo: Holloway, Mr. William Tonces, Richard Chambers Alderman, Mr. Edgar, Mr. Henry Kerſley, Mr. Edward Brewer, Mr. William Thornbury, Mr. Ratcliff, Mr. Richard Lane, Mr. Wilmor, Mr. Edward Watkins, Robert Wakeman, Mr. Leaver, Jo: Norwood, Jeford Baily, Mr. Euer, Mr. Edw: Pelling, Mr. Chriſto­pher Rotheram, Mr. Cheatwood, Mr. Broden, Mr. John Blunke, Ma­ſter John Davis, and Mr. Adam Edwards: theſe are the chiefe men-chaſhired in the Port of the City of London, beſides many ſcore more, whoſe Names at this preſent I cannot ſend unto your Lordſhip, in regard I have not yet had time and opporuunity to procure them, from my Friends the Committee in Mincing-lane, with whom I have the felicity to hold a ſtrict Correſpondence; eſpecially with Mr. Moyer, Mr. Shute, and Mr. Penoyer, three prime Saints: into whoſe Acquaintance I have ſo ſcrued my ſelf, that at any time they will unboſome themſelves, and entertaine me with as much confidence, as if I were a reall Member of the2 godly Fraternity. But we muſt uſe all Arts to bring things about underhand by ſleight, ſince we are not yet in a condition to act openly; and ſo I can effect the buſineſſe wherein I have the ho­nour to be ingaged, I ſhall make no ſcruple (as the Proverb ſaies) to light a Candle to the Devill, and Court his Creatures: For, I have ſo cajoled theſe three Wittals in the Courſes they have taken, that (I dare ſay) they have (though much againſt their wills, God wot) done more for 102. than all the Carpet-Knights of our Cavalry ever did with their Drinking of Healths.

But here (my Lord) before I proceed, be your Lordſhip plea­ſed (with me) to admire the wonderfull Juſtice of God, in the ſweet Juſtice done by the Gentlemen of Weſtminſter, toward theſe old Officers of the Cuſtome-houſe before-named; who ha­ving (for their owne private reſpects) made ſhipwrack of their Loyalty, and imbarqued Themſelves, their Lives, and Eſtates, in the Service of their good Maſters at Weſtminſter, to the deſtru­ction of the King, Nobility, and Gentry, receive no other reward but to be turn'd off (without any Cauſe ſhewne) like prophane Delinquents, with their Wives and Children, to ſhare in the com­mon Calamity: So that the good men at Weſtminſter have dealt (I may ſay) with theſe their good Servants, as the mercifull Turke did with an Italian whom he had in his power, promiſing him Life if he would renounce Chriſtianity and turn Mahometan; which the Italian had no ſooner done, but the Turke immediatly cut his Throat, reckoning it too ſmall a Revenge to deſtroy the Body, except he damned his Soule too: In like manner, the old Officers of the Custome-houſe having been drawne by the Sugge­ſtions of the two Houſes from that Allegiance they owed unto His Majeſty, meerly to preſerve Themſelves of Office, have now lived to ſee themſelves turn'd out of all: and ſo They may even go to the Devill for a Reward, ſince They are like to fare no better from thoſe their mercifull Maſters.

Now (my Lord) that which tickles me moſt, is, to ſee how finely I have managed the Intereſt I had with the Committee of Mincing-lane, in making Them the Inſtruments to deſtroy the Cuſtoms of the City of London, and let many Advantages ſlip by private Conveyances beyond-ſea to His Majeſty: For, wel-know­ing that little could paſſe a Diſcovery as long as the old Foxes3 were in office; therefore the principall worke was ſo to order the matter that they might be turn'd out to make roome for new ones; which falling out as ones heart would have wiſh'd, the Men of Weſtminſter have put in a Company of their owne Creatures, a ſort of crack'd Citizens, and ignorant Raſcals, Fel­lowes that have been frighted out of halfe a dozen Religions and Factions, that what with the ſharking of ſome, and the ignorance of others, the Cuſtoms will not amount to halfe ſo much as they did formerly: And this I humbly intreat your Lordſhip to aſſure 102. of, with my humbleſt Service to him, upon all Occaſions.

One thing (my Lord) I had almoſt forgot, which Moyer him­ſelf told me; how that now he had cried quittance with Watkins the Head-Searcher, for ſeizing on his Lead at Graves end, by cauſing M. Walton of the Houſe of Commons, and the Committee of Mincing-lane to report his Place to be unneceſſary. Potake them, that they did not make this Report a yeare agoe; For, then J. P. had received the two hundred pounds which that Fox Watkins ſeized on: But he being taken out of the way, we ſhall deale well enough with the new Novices, and ſend over G. freely to ſupply our Friends; For, no man but Watkins (with his Birds­eyes) can prie ſo narrowly, or know how to make a ſtop of tranſ­porting Money. Sometimes I have crack'd a Cup with him to ſooth him in his way; and when he is once in, he ſayes, he finds Gold in Moore-Fields, and Silver at the Cuſtome houſe: And though then the Fatling looks like the God of good Company, as if he minded little elſe, yet ſure I am he is a ſubtile Youth and hath notable intelligence, as if (like our new Saints) he drove a Trade in Viſion and Revelation, and tumbles like a Firkin in eve­ry corner: In earneſt, I know him to be a very crafty Fellow in his Place; and I thinke it none of my leaſt Services to 102. in breaking the neck of his Imployment; which I effected by the meanes of Maſter Walton, Maſter Moyer, and the Committee of Mincing-lane: I have likewiſe by ſetting Friends of mine upon Maſter Wilſon of the Councell of State, made him very active a­gainſt Watkins that he may never come to play againe: And this Maſter Wilſon may be the rather induced to, in regard himſelfe and the Guinny Company are reſolved to tranſport all their Gold which lately came home from Holland, and it amounts to4 about 30000 l. which I requeſt your Lordſhip to ſignifie to 102.

And that your Lordſhip may know who they are of the Com­mittee in Mincing-lene, with whom I correſpond, I ſhall give you their Names; and by the way I muſt tell you, I manage my Cor­reſpondence with each of them ſo warily, that not one of them knowes I deale at all with the other: they are the two Thomp­ſons, Maſter Shute, Maſter Ruſſell, the two Penoyers M. Hutchinſon, Maſter Moyer, and Maſter Bartlet; a refined Generation that count Gaine great Godlineſſe, and therefore lie at catch to ad­vance Themſelves and their Creatures upon the ruines of others, and put any Tricks (for their Profit) upon the Accompt of the Publique: And though they have all had a hand in undoing the old Officers; yet it is ſport to ſee, how they diſclaime the buſi­neſſe one after another, when any of thoſe Officers come to in­treat their Favour; which they grant them onely in faire words, confeſſing it is a ſad buſineſſe, and they are ſorry, whenas their Deſignes are to keep them out of their Offices for ever, and expoſe their Wives and Children to Beggery; which makes the poore caſhired Starvelings conſider now, that it is an ill way to gaine a Livelyhood by forfeiting their Loyalty: And it may con­vince the world of this Truth, that it is (and ever hath been) uſuall with all Maſter-Rebels and Uſurpers, when they have once gotten their ends, firſt to rid their hands of thoſe who have been moſt ſerviceable to them in their Uſurpation, and levell thoſe very Steps and Staires by which they aſcended to their height of Greatneſſe.

Therefore as they have given a Purge to all the old Officers at the Cuſtome-houſe of London, I aſſure your Lordſhip the Men of Weſtminſter intend likewiſe to proceed in the ſame Method to the caſhiring all the Officers of the Out-Ports, it being deſigned al­ready that they ſhall follow the Fate of their Brethren; And here I ſhall ſet downe a Liſt of their Names, as they were de­livered to me by one of my Friends in the Mincing Committee, Edward Nuttall, and Edward Man, of Ipſwich. John Burgis, Henry Shield, Barwick. Tho. Welby, George Sten, Boſton. William Bond, Hugh Nuttlebury, Bridgwater. Luke Hodges, Thomas Shewell, Will: Hill, Hugh Lewis, Briſtol. Hugh Lindſey, Will: Edwards, Che­ſter. Edward Herbert, Jo: Bird, Cardiff. Jo: Row, Mr. Cockeram,5 Chicheſter. Vincent de-la-bare, Richard Davis Bomkeeper. Dover. Richard Sanders, Walter Dibble, Exon. Robert Hill, Sam: Bruſton, Glouceſter. Matthew Aldred, Rob: Morton, Tho: Somerſcall, Hull. Henry Creamer, Tho: Tole, Lyn. John Bowen, Nicholas Squire, Mil­ford. George Fenwicke, George Blakiſton, Newcaſtle. Nich: Opie, Henry Hatſell, Plymouth. Henry Champant, Tho: Tulfſis, Mat­thew Lock, Southampton. Robert Fowler, Rocheſter. George Plea, Thomas Walton, Weymouth. Will: Greenwood, Will: Barret, Yar­mouth. John Robinſon, Graves-end: who are all deſigned to loſe their Places, as the Officers of the Cuſtome-houſe have done at London; And many of them are ſo poore, (their Livelyhood de­pending on their Places) that their Families muſt go a begging; yet they ſhall be put out without any cauſe ſhewne, ſave onely the will of the Gentlemen of the Committee of Mincing-lane; whereby they will be made as ſad Examples of diſloyalty as their Brethren of the Cuſtome-houſe at London.

I beſeech your Lordſhip faile not to let 102. ſee this Accompt, which I hope to bring to ſuch an Iſſue as may conduce much to his Service: For, when all the old Officers of the Ports are once caſhired, the new Ignoramuſes will contribute to our advantage beyond imagination, as well as the Ignorance and Covetouſneſſe of the Brethren of the Mincing Committee hath done at the Cuſtome-houſe of London pretty well already: For, beſides the benefit of privy Tranſportation (which the new Owles wil never eſpie) half the Cuſtoms muſt needs be loſt through their want of diſcretion; which wil no more diſpleaſe the Merchants, in having an opportunity to coſen that Thing call'd the State, than it will me to ſee Things at the ſame paſſe in the Out-Ports, as they are now at London: Concerning which, I ſhall labour and watch to give a farther Accompt unto you,

(My Lord)
Your Lordſhips moſt humble, and moſt faithfull Servant, J. M.

About this transcription

TextA notable plot discovered in a letter sent by an agent here in London, to the Earl of Cleveland at the Hague: shewing, how the said agent set the Committee of Mincing-lane on worke, to procure an Act to put out all the old officers of the Custom-house, by which means the Customes will be destroyed. Printed (together with a list of the names of the said committee, and of the officers cashiered, and to be cashiered) for the information of the Commons of England; especially such as hold any offices in the kingdome.
AuthorJ. M..
Extent Approx. 14 KB of XML-encoded text transcribed from 4 1-bit group-IV TIFF page images.
SeriesEarly English books online.
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(EEBO-TCP ; phase 2, no. A89479)

Transcribed from: (Early English Books Online ; image set 165118)

Images scanned from microfilm: (Thomason Tracts ; 86:E555[30])

About the source text

Bibliographic informationA notable plot discovered in a letter sent by an agent here in London, to the Earl of Cleveland at the Hague: shewing, how the said agent set the Committee of Mincing-lane on worke, to procure an Act to put out all the old officers of the Custom-house, by which means the Customes will be destroyed. Printed (together with a list of the names of the said committee, and of the officers cashiered, and to be cashiered) for the information of the Commons of England; especially such as hold any offices in the kingdome. J. M., Cleveland, Thomas Wentworth, Earl of, 1591-1667.. [2], 5, [1] p. s.n.,[London :1649]. (Signed at end: J.M.) (Probably a fabrication.) (Imprint from Wing.) (Annotation on Thomason copy: "May 19 1649".) (Reproduction of the original in the British Library.)
  • Customs administration -- England -- London -- Officials and employees -- Early works to 1800.

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ImprintAnn Arbor, MI ; Oxford (UK) : 2011-04 (EEBO-TCP Phase 2).
  • DLPS A89479
  • STC Wing M43
  • STC Thomason E555_30
  • STC ESTC R11029
  • EEBO-CITATION 99858926
  • PROQUEST 99858926
  • VID 165118

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