1696 manuscript, details trial of Sir William Parkins London (High Treason)

$200.00 CAD

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Sir William Parkins was an English lawyer who was executed for his part in the first Jacobite Rebellion, which aimed to restore the exiled James II to the English throne after the Glorious Revolution of 1688. Parkins did not participate personally; he purchased military equipment and ammunition for the Jacobites, which he stored in his country house. Parkins defended himself in court, without success. He was found guilty and executed, on Tyburn Place.

                                 THE TRYAL
                       Sir William Parkins, Knt
                On Tuesday the 24th. Of March 1695/6
                                     At the
            Sessions-House in the Old-Bayly London
The COURT (according to their Adjournment in the preceeding day) met, and proceeded to the Tryal of Sir William Parkins, in this manner.
Clerk of the Crown. Set Sir William to the Bar……


Great detailing of the proceedings of the trial, with all of the text of questions asked and answers given.

On the last page, after conviction of conspiring the Death of the King, the gruesome sentence:

That You, and each of You, be carried to the Place from whence you came, and from thence be drawn on a Hurdle to the Place of Execution, and be there severally Hanged, but cut down while you are alive; that your Privy Members be cut off; that your Bowels be taken out, and burnt before your Faces; that your Heads be sever’d from your Bodies, and your Bodies be divided into four Quarters, and your Quarters to be at the King’s Dispose: And the Lord have Mercy on your Souls.

On back page, titled ‘A True Copy of the Papers delivered by Sir John Freind, and Sir William Parkins, to the Sherrifs of London and Middlesex, at Tyburn, the Place of Execution, April the Third, 1696'.

Superb detailing of the last words of the the two condemned.

Freind ends with “…And I do now lay down my Life with all Cheerfulness and Resignation, in Sure and Certain hope for the Pardon of my Sins, and the Salvation of my Soul. And so, O Lord, into thy hand I commend my Spirit….AMEN.”

Parkins ends with “…As for my Religion, I Dye in the Communion of the Church of England, in which I was Educated. And as I freely Forgive all the World, so whoever I may any ways have injured, I heartily ask them pardon”.

Pages numbered 5-40 (36 pages). Missing front main title page, but trial pages complete.

Printed on thin paper. Creases and folds. Toned on outside pages and inner edges. Folded horizontally. Rust spots.

36 x 22 cm.



Sir William Parkyns or Perkins (1649?–1696) was an English lawyer and Jacobite conspirator, executed for high treason.

The trial of Parkyns took place on 24 March. The new act for regulating the procedure in cases of high treason came into force on 25 March, and he pleaded hard that he ought to be tried under its provisions. But the counsel for the crown stood on their rights, and his request was denied. He defended himself, but the testimony of Captain George Porter, who had turned king's evidence, was explicit; he was found guilty and condemned to death. Efforts were made to induce Parkyns to confess what he knew, and a deputation of nine Members of Parliament visited him in Newgate. He confessed his complicity in the plot, but he would not name the five persons whom he was to send to assist in the assassination; he stated that he had seen James's commission, but refused to give the names of those whom he had nominated to commissions in his regiment. He gave some additional particulars to Simon Patrick, the Bishop of Ely, to whom he also confessed the irregularities of his life.

Parkyns was executed on Tower Hill, along with Sir John Friend, on 13 April 1696. His head was exposed on Temple Bar.


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