POPISH PLOT. A Collection of nine Irish Popish-Plot.


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1. [Bury, Captain and Alderman Brooks of Dublin] A True Narrative of the Late Design of the Papists to Charge their Horrid Plot upon the Protestants. By Endeavouring to Corrupt Captain Bury and Alderman Brooks of Dublin, and to take off the Evidence of Mr. Oats and Mr. Bedlow, &c. As appears by the Depositions taken before the Right Honourable Sir Joseph Williamson, Knight, One of His Majesties late Principal Secretaries of State; And the several Examinations before Sir William Waller, Knight, One of His Majesties Justices of the Peace. London: Printed for Dorman Newman at the King's Arm in the Poultrey, 1679. pp. [iv], 16. Wing B6215. ESTC R4408. Sweeney 771. Bound with:

2. Samson, Thomas. Bourk, Hubert & Others. A Narrative of the Late Popish Plot in Ireland, for the Subjugating thereof to the French King: Together with the proceedings against, and Tryal of the Earl of Tyrone, and others, who were accused of carrying on the same. Containing the several examinations of Hubbart Bourke, Edward Ivie, John Macnemarrah, and Thomas Samson, Gent. upon Information taken before the Lord Lieutenant and Council of Ireland. The large promises of Rewards and Favours made to the persons aforesaid, in case they would have been induced to desist from prosecuting the said Earl, and to affirm that they have been suborned by others to accuse him. The many Threats made to all, and Punishments inflicted upon one of the said witnesses after they had peremptorily declared their resolution to discover what they knew concerning the said plot. The manner of the Proceedings against the said Earl at Waterford-assizes, 1679. with the Names of the Jury, and the Discouragements the King's evidence met with before, at, and since the said Assizes / By Tho. Samson Gent. late Steward to the Earl of Tyrone. London: Printed for Sam. Lee, and Dan Major; at the Feathers in Lumbard-street, and Hand and Scepter in Fleet-street, 1680. pp. [viii], 32. Wing S 542. ESTC R202423. Sweeney 4613. The indictment was formulated at Waterford on March 11th, 1679, when an attempt was made to implicate Richard Power, 1st Earl of Tyrone, by his former steward. Like so much of the 'Popish Plot' literature, Hubert Bourk, son and heir apparent to Redmond Bourk, late of Poole-more in the county of Clare, gentleman, claims to have delivered this information in Ireland in March 1678, prior to the 'Plot' being brought to public notice in England, in the wake of the murder of Sir Edmund Berry Godfrey. Bound with:

  1. The Information of Eustace Comyne, Servant to Mr. Keadagh Magher Treasurer to the Papists in Ireland, of their Mony to carry out this Horrid Plot; who was Barbarously Murthered for Discovering the same, and turning Protestant, Given in Writing to the Honorable House of Commons, the 15th of this present November, 1680. London: Printed for Thomas Fox, and are to be Sold at his Shop, at the Sign of the Angel in Westminster-Hall, 1680. pp. [iv], 7, [1]. Wing C5680. ESTC R39381. Sweeney 1136. Bound with:
  2. Fitzgerald, David. A Narrative of the Irish Popish Plot, for the betraying that Kingdom Into the hands of the French, Massacring all English Protestants there, And utter Subversion of the Government and Protestant-Religion; As the same was successively carryed on from the Year 1662. Given in to both Houses of Parliament. London: Printed for Tho. Cockerill, at the Three-Legs in the Poultrey over-against the Stocks-Market, 1680. pp. [ii], 35, [1]. Wing F 1072. ESTC R7381. Sweeney 1903. Bound with:
  3. [Sheridan, Thomas] Mr. Sheridan's Speech after his Examination before the Late House of Commons, on Wednesday the 15th of December, 1680. pp. 4. Drop title. Wing S 3227. ESTC R37543. Sweeney 4688. A defence furnished by him against accusations of disloyalty during the "Popish Plot" frenzy.

Thomas Sheridan obtained a fellowship in Trinity College, Dublin, which he was obliged to resign on becoming a Catholic. In 1680 he was imprisoned in connection with "The Popish Plot" but on the accession of James II, became Chief Secretary for Ireland in 1687. After the defeat at the battle of the Boyne, he followed his master into exile and acted as private secretary to James in France. Bound with:

  1. A True and Perfect Narrative of the Manner and Circumstance of Apprehending that Notorious Irish Priest, Daniel Mac-Carte, And the Contents of some Papers found about him: By which is apparently Discovered, how Indefatigable and Courageous those Hellish Blood-Hounds are in their Endeavours and Practices, in Contriving and Executing of all manner of Wickedness, though to the hazard of their Lives and Fortunes, to bring to Perfection their most Horrid Machinations, and worse than Matchivilian Designs. London: S.n. 1679? pp. 2. Caption title. Wing T 2535. ESTC R12155. Sweeney 5206. Bound with:
  2. Murphy, Edmund. The Present State and Condition of Ireland, But more especially the Province of Ulster, Humbly represented to the Kingdom of England. By Edmund Murphy, Secular Priest and Titular Chanter of Armagh, and one of the First Discovers of the Irish Plot. London: Printed for R. Boulter at the Turks Head in Cornhil, and Benj. Alsop at the Angel and Bible in the Poultrey, 1681. pp. [iv], 32. Wing M3104. ESTC R10136. Sweeney 3136. Imprimatur on leaf [A]1v: I Do Appoint Robert Boulter and Benjamin Alsop to Print this my Narrative, entituled, The Present state and condition of Ireland, &c. January 17, 1680, Edmund Murphy. Bound with:
  3. Carrol, James. A Narrative of the Popish Plot in Ireland, for the Murdering of the Protestants There, and the Introducing of Popery, and the Assistance they depended upon from England. Discovered by me James Carrol, in the Year 1672. With An Account of my Suffering for discovering the same. London: Printed for Richard Jane Way, in Queens-Head-Alley, in Pater-noster-Row, 1681. pp. [iv], 12. Wing C 644. Sweeney 881. Bound with:
  4. The Examination of Edw. Fitzharris, Relating to the Popish Plot, Taken The Tenth day of March, 1681. London: Printed for Thomas Fox, at the Sign of the Angel in Westminster-hall, 1681. pp. 18, [2]. Title within double ruled border. Wing E 3717. ESTC R14804. Sweeney 1847. London: 1679 / 1681. Folio. All bound in modern crimson morocco, title in gilt on black morocco label on spine. Old unobtrusive ink stain to first tract, otherwise in excellent condition. Exceedingly rare as a collection.

Anti-Catholic hysteria and panic was reoccurring throughout Charles II's reign, and reached a particularly bad point in the 1670's. Events like plague and the Great Fire of London frequently led to Catholic scapegoats being posited, and Charles' attempts to offer greater religious toleration, usually only enforced haphazardly, brought fears of a too great Catholic say in the affairs of the realm.

Enter Titus Oates. An Anglican clergymen of suspect background, (numerous criminal charges defined his early life, as well as, bizarrely considering what followed, a brief dalliance with Catholicism) in 1678 he and a few other compatriots wrote a lengthy manuscript claiming the existence of a vast Catholic conspiracy against the King and his government, spearheaded by the Jesuit order.

In 1677 The Duke of Ormond was again appointed Viceroy of Ireland, and he held the office during the ensuing seven years, at an advanced age, and at a period of extraordinary political turmoil. The "Popish Treason" was the first and the most fearful of these troubles. Ormond was at Kilkenny when he received the first intimation of the conspiracy, October 3, 1678; but he had too much knowledge of the world to credit it for a moment. Like other politicians of that, and indeed other ages, he was obliged to keep up his reputation by appearing to believe it in public, while in private he treated the whole affair with the contempt it merited.


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