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lowest and most ill-informed of that description a member of the London Corresponding Society
when village. In stating these facts he did not mean he mec Weldon, Brady introduced him. Weldon, to over hep the strict line of duty, nor to exar- chen brought the witness to a public house - In perate the jury against the prisoner;- it was ne going to the house Weldon said nothing, but ceffary he should state these facts for understand. alked him how he was at the house a naggia ing the evidence.
of whiskey was called forBrady told Weldon The crime with which the prisoner stood he should go for Flood who promised to meet charged was of the most awful nature in its con- him Weldon desired Brady not to be longkequences both to him and to the public. It A boy came in and said his fupper was ready aimed at nothing less than the destruction of the Weldon said it was his son. --Weldon then went government we live under, the life and proper- out-Brady returned before Weldon with Clayton iy of every individual. But this crime, great witness and Kennedy were in the room togeindeed in its own nature, received aggravation, ther-Welden returned in a quarter of an hour. if fuch a crime could be aggravated, from the Weldon in drinking some punch laidWe had peculiar situation of the priloner ; he was a sol- better make thoje two-meaning Clayton and dier serving in his majesty's 7th regiment of witness.-Brady asked had Weldon a prayer-book, dragoons--as such he was sworn to defend his he said he had - Weldon cook the prayer-book king by an oath' which other men are not bound and desired Clayton and witness to take hold of to take. This circumstance certainly rendered it with the right hand--recollected nothing of it the less likely that he could be guilty of the conversation before he put the oath was told crime, but if the crime was proved, it added the purpose of the oath before-both of them greatly to its enormity. This man it would ap- held the book-had seen a paperhe called it pear from the evidence, administered an oach to a teft-had seen the paper lince [one was
Lwler, &c. [Here Mr. Attorney General presented to witness which he identified] was i gave a short recital of the evidence of Lawler, sworn to two papers by pritoner-[a paper was
which, as we give it at length, makes it unne- presented to witness which he allo identified) ceflary to repeat this part of the Attorney Gene. The court deüred thote papers to be read -- which rai's speech.)
were those that had been copied in the indictHe concluded by some observations on the oath ment.--Witness repeated his name in taking the and catechism..That clause which mentions al. path. After he was sworn Brady asked if Wel. legiance to the king, “ so long as he should live don knew any one who was to head the insurunder the same government," was an evident de gents when they thould rise. Weldon said he Ironfiration that it was meant to subvert the go- believed there was one in the North who would vernment as it narrowed the term or his allegi- head them. He told them that letters would be ance. That part of the catechism which named sent to the country to tell them when they were the national convention could mean no other than to rise. --Weldon was asked by Kennedy how the French aliembly, for there was at that time would every one be acquainted with it, and how no other national convention in the world; and would they (Clayton and witness) get to know it? the allufion to the " cock crowing in France He said that the committee-men would acquaint over all the world," could mean nothing but an them.- Nothing further happened. Weldon intent to subvert the government and kill the said he would tell Brady when there was to be a king, as had been done in France.
meeting of the Defenders, so as that witness and William Lawler was produced for the crown, the reit should know, and believed there would and examined by the Solicitor General. -He is a be a meeting of Defenders in the courle of next gilder – worked in England and Ireland served week-Had seen the papers he swore to with his apprenticeship here-went to England in 1791, Kennedy.-Weldon cold witness he would give remained about two years-while in England was
the two papers to Brady before he would leave get arms to allist the French when they would town, and said he was going to Cork with his come-Witness saw a small paper laid upon a regiment.--Did not say for what' purpose he book-Witness ceased to be a Defender, and was to give the papers to Brady.-Weldon told told Mr. Cowen of his having been fost wis tem che figns by which to know a Defender after there was a meeting at Nowland's in Drurywhich were these-pucting the hands joined on laneThere were at this meeting, Hart, Cooke, the top of the head-then bringing them both to Dry, Tottenham, Kennedy, and Flool. He the kaces. The answer to this was drawing told Cowen the Monday following, on account the palm of the right hand across the forehead of what Hart declared at that nieeting tart at and returning she back of that hand joco the that meeting alked him if Dry and Coffee were palm of the left. The reply to this was – by not Protestants ? Witness said he believed they doing the same thing with the left hand. Then wereHart said he was forry, for he would not came the pals word-Eliphizmatis.
fit in coinpany with one. Notice was given that When the oath was taken, he, Weldon, there would be a meeting on Sunday. -Coffee asked if they liked the oath he looked then at was then in the chair, and wanted to know how Brady who said they knew whai they have come many Defenders there were in Dublin, that here for.
officers might be set over them-heard noching at Weldon then said, laughing, “ We know Drury-lane about arms.At Stoney-batter, Hart that if the king's head was off to-morrow morn made the members swear they would on Monday ing, we would be no longer under his govern- night come there and bring arms as they were ment." Witness asked him if he was not afraid going out to get arms on that night. The dath of keeping the papers about him. He faid no, he conceived was the oath chat Defenders had because he was never searched ;-but at any taken to obey the committee man.--The notice rate, he cared not who saw the first (i. e. the of rifing in the North not mentioned. cath) but the imall paper was the principal one Cross ex imined by Counsellor Curran. He said the first paper was only a cioak for the Witness was a Protestant, and had been lo army on account of swearing to be true to the always but had denied his religion anong the king-He said he had sworn seveçal of the army Defenders in consequence of what Brady lead told -law the papers in Kennedy's hand after Weldon him-Was brought up as a Protestant, ani went out of town-he knew them and challenge taught there was a God, and the suffering of his ed them at a place in Drury-lane--Brady brought son for the redemption of man, considered the witness to the meeting in Plunket-streetof Defoundation of his oath in this belief. fenders-Kennedy was with him and many were “ Have you never denied your belief of a dsembled was asked for 6d. -- they were putting God," laid Mr. Currana down money as a collection for gun-powder He hesitated, and the question was objected to Brady desired bim to give 6d. -- borrowed the 6d. by the Attorney General, and the objection was from Kennedy-faw a person called Laughinton, allowed. who was said to be a captain of defenderscoun “ Then," said Mr. Curran, “ I won't press derstood from the company that they wanted pow. the questionince this protection is put about der
, and were going to get arms, but not at that you, I am sure it must be necesary for you." time Brady and Kennedy told him there was to He did not like the idea of malfacring all the be a meetingsaw some of this company after. Protestants and it was communicated by Hart. ward at Stoney-batter and corner of Arbour-bill The conversation of Hart, not the first time he Law Brady afterward, but he did not give no- had heard the idea of deftroying the Protestants, tice of this
latter meeting--this meeting was of but he did not think until then that they meant Defenders (this allowed by court to be no evi- to destroy all the Protestants.-Learned from dence, as no foundation was laid for it by shew. Brady they would rise.-Weldon had told him ing the connection between this meeting and there would be a meeting in Thomas-streei Weldon, or his agent Brady) – saw the oath in and that Brady would tell witness. - Weldon went Murphy's hand-law the sign used but never at out of town before the meeting in Plunket-treet a meeting, for there must be some present who Brady did not say that he asked witness to go in knew him to be a defender-One Wallh a taylor, consequence of Weldon's desire. At Stoneywent with him to Stoney-batter-he knew him batter the first mention was made of the by the signs to be a Defender --Parker a fhoç. French. ---Could not tell how long between the maker was also there, whom he knew by the fign meeting at Plunket-ftreet and that at Sconeyto be a Defender.-Cooke, a school-master, was batter.-Did not make a speech at Plunket. at the meeting at Stoney-batter. The meeting street-Saw no person as secretary- but law a was at Murphy's, corner of Stoney-batter.-One man putting down money he had collected. Leary was also there – Witness frequented these Neither Brady nor Kennedy were ac Stoneymeetings as a Defender was a Defender he be- batter.-Cooke was not at Barrack-fireet at the lieved about three months. On question by the first meeting when witness was there.- Weldon court, he said that the men, (Walth, Parker, had never mentioned Hart's name, nor Cooke and Cooke) whom he faw at Stoney,batterhad nor Walth to witness. Hart started mention all given the signs. This the court said, et a- about the French.- No man was appointed as blished the ground for making the proceeding of chairman.-Hart spoke of the French to the this meeting, evidence.
young man he was to swear.- Nobody elle faid Hart brought in a youug man and swore him.- any thing more on the subject of the French. The young man was not willing at firft.-Hart The only mention then of the French was at told him that the object of the meeting was to
Stoney-batter—and that only by Hart.-Did not a list the persons exercising the powers of govern. think it an enormous crime to attempt the king's mont in France 3 the day mentioned in che in. life when he was sworn by Weldois-He now di tment, and then at open war with his majesty thinks it an enormous crime.
-21, con'ulting with other triitors to a 'it the Mr. Oliver Carleton, sworn.
king's e se nies -3d, associating and consulting On viewing the copy of the oath - he said he with other tricors to fubvert the government had seen it on the 27th August - was sent for by 4th, associating ant confulting with other traitors alderman James-got warrants from him against to subvert the Protest int religion-5th, enli ting Kennedy, Brady, and Walth-had them executed a man of the name of Lawler to all the - went to Kennedy's, the glass-man in Stephen- French, &c.-ih, enliting him to adhere to ftreet, about five in the morning-knocked at the French, &c. if they louldinvade this counthe door, it was opened by Kennedy and Brady- try-7th, corrupring Lawler to fubvert the Pro. had been directed to search Kennedy's pocket and testant religion and Sth, enlifting him by ai. did so, and there found this oath and the cate- ministering an oath, &c. for those purposes. chism took them both into custody-Kennedy In order to support the indictment fome one of remains in Newgate.
those overt-acts must be proved the overt-act Cross-examined by Mr. M'Nally. must be such as shall support the charge, and Did not know or bear of Lawler nor of Wel. the evidence mult prove che overt-act. Had don--Alderman James had informed him where this trial been held on the other side of the water, to find the papers about Kennedy.
he believed such irrelevant evidence as that which Here the Attorney General closed the evidence had been given by Mr. Carleton would not have for the crown.
been admitted to patch up proof to support the Mr. Curran now entered on the prisoner's de- charge. In alluding to Mr. Carleton he meant fence, and did indeed discharge that task very only to say what he had said was inapplicable to ably. This, he observed, was one of those cases the charge-sorry would he be to compare for a in which the wisdom and humanity of the Engmoment the credibility of that gentleman with Jith law looked for the most clear and irresistible that of Lawler. Seriously indeed should the jury evidence in order to affix the crime, because the consider what credit was due to the evidence of crime was in its own nature the most atrocious such a man as Lawler a man of such morality, that man in society could commit, and its coníe- and so circumstanced.To him it appeared that quences to the man accused the mod fatal. - t he deserved but little credit--but granting that was to a laudable zeal for the preservaiion of pub- Lawler's evidence was as credible as Mr. Carlelic tranquility, and certainly not to a thirst for ton's was immaterial, every thing which he had the blood of the unhappy man at the bar, that sworn left the indi&tment unsupported. ---It he attributed the exaggerated Statement which would argue a very unworthy suppolition in him, had been made by Mr. Attorney General, and did he consider it neceffary to warn fuch a jury which he must infilt was in many infances un- against being led away by those phantoms which supported by the evidence which was produced. have been created by folly and adopted by ma. -This zeal, however necessary it was to caution lignity. Knew that such a jury, in a case of a jury against it, was such as might naturally such importance as the present would not suffer arise in a loyal and good mind, and perhaps their imagination to dupe their judgment;mhe would be found to be itrongest in the best men. knew that being Tworn io do justice, they would But it was not by the zeal of a loyal and not be governed by party prejudice or political warm prosecutor that the jury were to measure expediency, but would like honest and rational evidence it was not the fatement of counsel men discard their paffions, and hear only their but the full proof of facts which should regu- reason in judging of the evidence. What was late their verdict. - It was a principle of eternal the evidence in potnt of fact? That Lawler was justice, that the more enormous the crime brought to Weldon, and that Weldon adminis. charged, the greater should be the degree of cer- tered a nonsensical oath, which so far as it was tainty required to convict. In the present in. intelligible, was innocent and so far as it was ftance there could be no guilt more deep, no nonsense-could prove nothing - This was the wickedness more horrible than that with which sum of the evidence which bore against the pri. the prisoner was charged--no less than an attempt foner, for the words by Brady to Lawler, before on the sacred life of the sovereign-and the ine- he brought him to Weldon, could not be made yitable design of fubverting all government, and evidence against the prisoner who did not affent to annihilating all order : he must therefore again those words, and was not present when they repeat it that as the crime was thus horrible they were uttered. As little would the jury be in: should be the more cautious in their belief. clined to attach to the oath that meaning which
Mr. Curran then proceeded to compare the the creative power of fancy had formed in evidence with the charge. The indictment some men's minds, and which the enthusiastic accused the prisoner of the two fpecies of treason cant of loyalty had been se tulous to affix to it. described by the 25 of Edward III ; the one What was that meaning ? That it was to make a intending and compaffing of the king's death; Defender. He wished he could ask the learned the other an adherence to the king's enemies. Attorney General what that word meant He
In both these kinds of creason it was enacted wished he was permitted to appeal to any rober by this itatute that the intention should be evince understanding what' that tremendous word imed by proveable evidence of outward acts. ported. He was however entitled to call on the The outward acts stated in the indictment were court, and alk whether if the spirit of aeculacight : 1. affociering with sraitors unknown, to
tian affixed any definite idea to this cant, the The true rule to ascertain what evidence should title which marks the sovereign the DEFENDER, be deemed suficient againit the prisoner was, if of his people, will, ia the estimation of law, the evidence be such as that if false, its fairewhen applied to him be a mark of honour, but baod may be fo proved as to convia che witnefs when applied to a common man be a term of op- of perjury.- But whac evidence can prove or probrium and of guilt? Certainly it did not, disprove a thrug or a smile? In a word, there and therefore the term DEFENDER, when could be no safety to the honour, the property, attempted to be used in any other meaning or the life of man, in a country where fuch hould always be discarded by a sensible court.- evidence as that which had been now given, The witness, such as he is, such as he was, would be deemed sufficient to convict a prisoner. with all his zeal for the furtherance of public Weldon, he observed, was present at only one jutice, which he was once ready to violate by meeting with the witnesst was not even prethe massacre of his fellow subjects with all his tended by the prosecutors that the guilt did anziety for his sovereiga's safety, whom he was relt on the firit convertation. He had expected once ready to affaffinate, does not say that the therefore to hear that the witness would have meaning of this word Defender, had ever been sworn to his having been enlisted by Weldon to explained to him. It was, however, the pro- allitt the French.- Nothing like this had been vince of the jury, to consider whether this oath, sworn. - He had sworn to nothing in which wei. innocent or nonsensical as it might appear, was don was concerned, but the ligns (which were yet a cover and a bond of a treasonable associa- incapable of proving any thing) and the oth tion. What has been said to induce them to and before he would quit this part of the evidence, give it this inierpretation? The prisoner laughed he would again call on the jury maturely to when it was read! Was laughing a proof of weigh what proof they had received that the treason? But he had said, “ if the king's head terms of this oath were equivocal. was off to-morrow, we would be no longer un. The obvious way of interpreting any writing der his government.”—Could even this express was by the common meaning of the words.ale fion be a proof of the enormous crime of treaton? was true indeed, that words may be made to figniCertainly it could not though no doubt it was fy arbitrarily any ideas, and that cherefore trea. foch an expreifion as muit have a tendency to fonable meaning may be attached to words which bring the person who uttered it into disrepute. ia cbeir ordinary signification are innocent. But If it was asked why but to cover a treasonable that this was the case with respect to the oath purpose are all these suspicious circumitances ? in question what proof had been adduced ? It was not for him, nor was it the prisoner's duty If then the charge were fuffered to reit on the to account for them in defending himself against prisoner's own conduct there could not be a doubt this charge, because it is not circumitances that about bis acquittal.-But there was other matet render innocence doubtful, but full proof that. ter introduced. First it was proved that Brady makes guilt and creason indubitable, which the had given the witness notice of a meeting in law requires-He again said, therefore, that there Plunket-street, and that Weldon had referred was no proof to substantiate the indictment. Was witness to Brady for this information. He did there a word spoken by the prisoner about a de- fo, but he did not tell the witness that there was lign against the king ? Was there a word spoken on any scheme in contemplation which was to be that subject even at any of the subsequent meet matured in that or any subsequent ineetings. ings whole acts have been admitted as evidence Belides Weldon had left town before that meece against the prisoner? Was there even so much as a ing took place, and when it did take place, no design mentioned to correct the abuses of govern- treasonable matter occurred. ment? Was there a hint dropped of a public With respect to the sneeting at Sconey-batter, grievance? No such thing is proved by the folie in which the witness taid he tirit heard the design tary witness in all his accuracy of detail. of affiting the French mentioned, two observa
But was there any proposition made of affitting tions occurred, first, That where the law makes the French ? No! What then was there proved the act of coniulting criminal, it requires that on which to reft the charge? Why in one of the conlultation should be he.ween the members those papers it was asked “ Where did the cock of the body, and does not take the expre.lion of Crow over all the world ?" This appeared not to ONE man as an act of confultation in the affem. be very explicit evidence yet this cock was the bly. Secondly, That granting the meeting at only proof brought by Mr. Attorney General, Stoney-barter to have been criminal because one to thew a design to kill the king! The jury he min laid something to another about ailiiting the knew, were aware that the statute of Edward Freach, yet was Weldon to be affected by it, III. on which this indidment was founded, was affected even to the thedding of his blood, though framed to prevent vague and constructive trea. he was an hundred miles distant at the time? foas, to bring the crime within the strict letter A jury should be very cautious indeed how they of law, and to make full proof necessary to con established such a precedent !-- There was no docviction. All the dreadful and horrid uncertainty trine of English law fo plain or to well afcer. which had prevailed in cases of treason, before tained us that a man is to be criminally affected the palling of this act, and which had thed upon only by his own conduct, and there was no law, the scaffold, some of the belt blood of England there was no lecurity, there was no reafun where would again run in upon us if dubious words the life of a man was liable to forfeiture on aca hould be taken as full proof, or if a jury should count of the act of others, construirvely applied convict on the conftruction of a zealous witness. to him.-li a man were to be obnoxious to the Hib. Mag. Jan. 1796.
punishment of treason hatched and perpetrated in any individual of them ?-No.-Was he a leader his absence, every member of society became lia or conductor of any of those meetings ? -No. ble to be cut off by suspicion. Good God ! Did they meet at his instance, or act agreeably to Gentlemen, said Mr. Curran, only take afunder his mandate? No such thing. When he quit. the evidence upon which you are detired to take ted Dublin, the connection between him and the away the life of this unfortunate man." You societies ceased, and there is no evidence that he Weldon are chargeable and you fall answer with had any knowledge of any subsequent act of your blood for what you have done at Stoney. their's. batter." That is very hard gentlemen for 1 Hitherto he had reasoned to prove, that though was an hundred miles off that cime."-Yes, but the meetings at which Lawler had affifted were you were tbere in constru&ion of law."__"How, guilty, yet the guilt could not be brought home gentlemen, could I be there who knew not that to the prisoner who was absent.--He now prothere was any such meeting, or who were present ceeded to argue, that from what had appeared in at it?"-"You were at Stoney.batter in construco evidence, the meetings themselves could not in tion of law, because you told Lawler that Brady the estimation of law be guilty. If these affemwould inform him when there would be a meeting blies were not proveably guilty of creason, there in Plunket-ftreet, and because you told him so, could be no retroactive guilt on the prisoner even you shall be answerable with your life for what is if the communication between them and the pridone at any meeting, at any time, at any place foner was proved. Nothing he said could be by ftrangers whom you have never seen or heard more clear than the distinction which the law of !-The growing interest of your folly is ac- cftablished between intemperate language, and a Cumulating, it is rising against your blood and determined and deliberate act ;--and he cited two you shall discharge it on the gibbet."-Before cases froin the books, Hend's and lord Preston's, we shall have learned to the blood in sport, while to prove it. -Suppose said he, that the whole death and Naughter are not yet a paftime-Gen- allembly were indicted for consulting about give tlemen let us consider how we establish so horrid ing aid to the king's enemies and that the evia precedent. For my own part I have learned dence adduced was, that an individual in that from the religion and mercy of the English law meeting had said to some of the members, “we that o man's life should be sacrificed to the inge. must get arms, we must allift the French." nuity of a SCHOLIUM, and that even he who Would any reasonable man without further evihas inadvertently dropped the seed of guilt should dence say, that this proved the guilt of the meetnot answer for is with his blood when it has ing, though that expression was but that of one grown under the culcure ef osker hands from folly individual, and addressed only to another, and to crime, from crime to treason !-know indeed was not corroborated or approved by any other that there is a guilt from participation--but it is man in the assembly? Surely they would not. from ACTUAL participation. Ji I send an aslar. -If now in couri a lawyer should get up and fin to atpatch my enemy, he strikes the blow, say to his neighbour, " we must assist the French yet aniwer for the crime; but if in a play. if they invade Ireland," there is not a lacquey house or a club-room a crime be committed, about the hall, who would be absurd or ignorant there is no law which will bring the guilt to me, enough to believe from this expreifion of one even though I may be present in the play-house iodividual, that this affembly are consulting or a member of the club. Consider what will be about giving aid to the French. There must be the consequence of establishing the precedent, a reciprocation of sentiment on the fame subject that a man thall always be responsible for the act in order to constitute a consultation. If this of the fociety he has once belonged to.-Will you reasoning had force, how much thronger would it give it abroad that if a man once belongs to a appear with respect to the prisoner, when it was criminal confederacy his case is desperate, his considered that at the time those assemblies met retreat cut off, and he shall to the end of time be he was 100 miles off? Even had he been present aniwerable for whatever has been or ever shall and had the meeting been a guilty one had they be committed by them - What is the law in this been hatching the death of the sovereign and the instance? That in co-operation there is danger, subversion of the statę, still would he not be but that the moment of retreat is the moment of guilty of treason though he remained filent and safety. What is the prisoner's case? He quilted did not reveal the conspiracy, unless he had the country before the treasonable acts were per previous knowledge that creasonable matter was formed. Yes, but he was virtually 'prelent. to be discuited at the meeting. His guilt would What constitutes a man virtually present when he not be trearon-it would be guilt of a different is physically abfent? When by previoully fug- kind. How different was this doctrine from that gelting the crime he proves the concurrence of which the Attorney General withed to inculcate his will with that of the party committing the on the jury when he desired then to find the pricrime. That, in short, which makes a man ac- foner guilty; on what evidence? Why because ccssary before the fact in common felony, will the prisoner laughed when he had talked of the prove his concurrence in a treasonable act peró oath, and he had asked “ Where the cock crew formed in his absence, and will make him a prin. that every body heard ? To be sure it might have cipal in the treason, because in treason all are been very foolish and perhaps very indecent to principals.- What conftitutes an accessary before talk thus of a cock, bue if the jury found the fact ? Any act which induces or leads to the the prisoner guilty for doing so, they would act Commiflion of the crime. Did Weldon induce very like the inquest on a murder, who thought any of the treasonable doings which took place in a man guilty that was standing by, why? because his absence ? Did he wsite to the assemblies, or