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Archive for the ‘Oxfordshire’ Category

Earl of Essex advances towards Gloucester

In Gloucestershire, Oxfordshire on September 4 at 1:36 am

4 Sep 1643 (Mon) || The last Weekes informations related how farre his Excellency the Parliaments Lord Generall was advanced to the reliefe of Glocester, viz. That on Thursday last¹ he was about Bicester in Oxfordshire, where we then left him. To proceed, on Friday last his Excellency drew up all his Army at Bayards Greene on the plaine of Biciter, from whence the Army marched towards Chipping-norton, and one of the Colonells of this City was with his Regiment about Banbury, where he was on Friday last. As for their farther Progresse, we shall make a daily relation of it, as we receive information. || William Ingler – Certaine Informations

¹ i.e., Thursday 31 August


Parliamentarian pressed men allegedly drown themselves

In Oxfordshire on August 28 at 11:30 pm

28 Aug 1643 (Mon) || It was advertised this day, that the Earle of Essex was advanced towards Beconsfield (a village in the way to Oxford) with his puissant Army, compounded of such excellent ingredience as before you heard of, and that his soldiers, especially the Pressed men, went unto the worke with so great a cheerfulnesse, that being sent downe by water to him, many of them rather chose to expose themselves unto the mercy of the Thames (some of which were drowned as they swam the River) then venture soule and body both in such a desperate and damnable quarrel; and that of those who did permit themselves to be set on shore, there was so great a jealousie, that they were attended to his Excellency by 3. Troops of Horse, the one going before them, and the other 2. after. The Committee were resolved, it seems, to conduct them thither, and bring them safe unto the Generall to make up his tale. Let them run afterwards when and to whom they please. || John Berkenhead/Peter Heylyn – Mercurius Aulicus (R)

Kent sends men to join Earl of Essex in Oxon

In Kent, Oxfordshire on June 23 at 9:02 pm

23 Jun 1643 (Fri) ||  The Inhabitants of the County of Kent, have raised 500 men more for the defence of the King and Parliament, and this day they were all to meete at Gravesend which is their Rendezvous, from whence they were to be conveyed in Barges to Brainford in the County of Middlesex, and from thence they are to march to Thame, to his Excellencie the Parliaments Lord Generall, to recreut his Army, and every man of them is furnished with money for some weekes pay, to defray their charges. || William Ingler – Certaine Informations (P)

Skirmish at Chalgrove

In Oxfordshire on June 20 at 9:13 pm

20 Jun 1643 (Tue) || Yesterday the Information came, that Colonell Urrey who ran from hence to Oxford the last week purported to shew his first Master peece upon the 25000.li that was carried from hence on Friday last, to his Excellency at Tame, and guarded onely with two of the City Troopes of Horse: wherefore out he comes of Oxford on Saturday last with above a thousand horse to intercept it, but the convoyers of the Money had the wisdom to leave the Common Road to Thame, and went thither by Alesbury an other way, whereby the Cavaliers were defeated of their purposes, which made them so mad, that they set upon one of his Excellencies quarters in the night at a little Towne called Chinner about four miles from Tame;¹ where our Souldiers defended themselves bravely, neither could they be forced out, untill the Cavaliers had fired the Towne, which gave them such advantage, that they both slew and tooke some few of our Souldiers; hereupon the Alarme being given to Tame and other Quarters, his Excellency sent out some Troopes of his Horse to relieve them, who pursued the Cavaliers so resolutely, that they forced them to leave many of their Prisoners, and killed divers of note amongst them, whereof the said Colonell Urrey and Captaine [William] Leg as the report […];² And they tooke one of the younger sonnes of the Earle of Berkeshire with some others; and of ours, Serjeant-Major Gunter was slaine by adventuring himselfe too far, and Colonell Hampden was shot into the shoulder, and Sir Samuel Luke who was taken prisoner by one of the Cavaliers, was rescued by his own man, who pistoled his guardian and so freed him. || William Ingler – Certaine Informations (P)

The Earle of Essex, who before had hovered about Tame, and the adjoyning Villages in Buckinghamshire, this day sent out a considerable party of his soldiers to looke towards Oford; who coming within sixe or seaven miles of it, caused an Alarme to be given to His Majesties forces. But this Afternoone Prince Rupert went that way with some Troopes of Horse and other forces. And this night he fell upon the Rebels Quarters at Chinner 3 miles beyond Tame, and scoured the Country all night long for many miles together, so as he provoked a large body of the Rebels Horse to come forth in the morning, which assone as his Highnesse had discovered, he drew off a little, on purpose to draw the Enemy into a large field, which done, he appointed Master Percies Regiment for a Reserve, & with Prince Charles his Regiment and his own charged the Enemy so bravely that he slew above an hundred dead in the place, and made the rest shew the justice of their cause that is, run away most shamefully; he tooke 6 colours and came the same day backe to His Majesty, having sent his prisoners (which were almost 200) to Oxford before him, whereof the cheifest was Captaine Sheffield sonne to the Earle of Moulsgrave; their Commander in cheife Sergeant Major Gunter had too honourable a death, for the was shot dead by a noble hand. In the meane while Master Percyes Regiment having put the Reserve of the Rebels to flight, fell on the flanke of the enemy, and did good execution. One lusty strong Rebel aymed directly at the Prince himselfe, but his Highnesse dispatched him into another world. All our noble Gentlemen did as bravely now as ever, and Colonell Urrey (backed with a good cause indeed) never fought better in his life, for which his Majesty knighted him the same day. We lost only six common souldiers, but no Officer nor any Colour, Onely the Reader may already collect by this, that the next London Diurnall for the occurrences of the two Houses (though one of their late Pamphlets doth expressely threaten it) is not likely to beare date at Oxford.

The Reader is therefore to be advertised further, that of the six Colours taken in the fight, some were of the Earle of Essex his owne Colours, and had painted in great Capitall letters, CAVE ADSUM, to let us see with what a fury his Excellency intended to have fallen upon us; yet Cave Adsum was an admirable Motto for one who never shewed his face in the battaile.³ Other Colours they had were set out gloriously with three faire Bibles, to make poore simple folke believe they fought in defence of the Word of God, whereas their doctrine and practice (which maintaines perjury, rebellion, and blasphemy) would have beene abominable to the very Heathens.4

This day some other of the Prisoners were brought to Towne, who had beene taken in the fight the day before: and with them certaine information, that the Victory was greater on his Majesties part then was thought at first, in that besides a great number of the common Souldiers which were killed or taken, the Rebels lost divers of their prime Commanders and most able Officers; Hampden himselfe (who did most eagerly perswade to give the on-set) being so sore wounded in two places, and his body so extreamely bruised, that it was verily conceived he could not live. And to such a height of imudence and impiety are those Rebels grown, that to hold up the hearts of their fainting Souldiers, and to keepe up their reputation amongst simple people, The Earle of Essex or some other by his appointmnt, caused publike thankesgiving to be made that afternoone in the Church in Tame, for the defeat which they had given that day unto His Majesties Forces. || John Berkenhead/Peter Heylyn – Mercurius Aulicus (R)

¹ Ingler has the sequence of events incorrect: Rupert raided Postcombe and Chinnor overnight, and just missed intercepting the the convoy the next morning; the skirmish at Chalgrove followed.
² This comes at the end of a page: it appears a line was omitted when the newsbook was typeset.
³ “Cave adsum” means “Watch out, I’m here!” Thomas Blount’s translated colour treatise of 1648, which has a list of ECW colours appended, states that this colour was in fact that of Major Gunter (who was killed during the skirmish).
4 The Royalist account of the skirmish states that the colours were dragoon cornets of Sir Samuel Luke; that 3 were taken, and they were set on a black field (background).

Parliamentarians deface “popish” property in Thame

In Oxfordshire, Uncategorized on June 19 at 9:10 pm

19 Jun 1643 (Mon) || From Tame in Oxfordshire by an expresse it is Informed, that his Excellency the Parliaments Lord Generall, came with his whole Army into the Towne on the 11. of this Instant, where they are to reside untill more forces come in to them: that the Cavaliers were there the same Morning, but fled from thence before they came thither. That on Tuesday last, some hundreds of men came out of the Counties of Buckingham and Hartford to them, and that they expect more forces out of Bedfordshire, which when they arrive, will make them a considerable Army. That some of the Souldiers as soone as they came into the Towne pulled the Crosse downe to the ground, defaced many Popish Images in the Church, brake downe the Organs, and cut down the May-pole; whereat the Townes-men were extreamely inraged, so well had the Cavaliers Instructed them in Popery before their flight from thence. That the Souldiers of his Excellencies owne Regiment are quartered in the Church and Churchyard, and kept out the Greene-Coats, so that they cannot doe what they would in it. That the Cavaliers are also fled from Brill 3. miles from thence, and that they left such an ill favour behind them, which hath so infected the Towne, that the Inhabitants thereof die very fast. And that there came two Trulls from the Cavaliers at Oxford to Tame, to view their Army, and to doe mischiefe in their Campe, but they were discovered, and both of them were tied to a Carts taile and whipt soundly by the Souldiers. || William Ingler – Certaine Informations (P)

The Earl of Essex summons Wallingford

In Oxfordshire on June 4 at 6:02 pm

Sunday 4 Jun 1643 || By letters from divers Captains of the army under Command of his Excellency neere Wallingford, it is certified that his Excellency hath sent a Herald to demand the surrendring up of that town to the use of the King and Parliament upon quarter, which if he refused hee intended God willing to recover the possession thereof by force, which would prove of greater disadvantage to the inhabitants then peaceably without blowed to yeeld up the same. To which Answer for the present was returned, they expected assistance from the Kings Army, but if none came, they were strong enough to defend themselves from his force; upon which Warrants [were] issued to the Colonels, Captains, and Officers in his Excellencies name for their present repaire from their Randevouz with their forces to the town for the present beleagring of the same: and two Alarums have been struck up for assault to be made against the same: the further relation of these proceeding you shall understand by the next Post from thence. ||  Richard Collings – The Kingdome’s Weekly Intelligencer

Northampton garrison falls for Royalist trick

In Northamptonshire, Oxfordshire on May 10 at 3:15 pm

11 May 1643 (Thu) || From Northampton they write, that a Gentleman came lately to their town with a Letter (which since hath proved forged) from the Parliaments Lord Generall, to require them to arme some horse and foot, and to send them to Banbury, where some of his forces should meet them, to drive the Cavaliers from thence; whereunto they simply giving credit, presently sent out thither 500. horse and foot, whither being come, they were presently surrounded with multitudes of horse from the towne, and miserably both cheated and defeated, insomuch that forty of them lost their lives, being slaine by the Cavaliers sixty of them were taken prisoners, and they lost also eighty Armes, one Drake and a  Carriage of Ammunition and other provision, which happened unto them by their incautelous¹ credulity, yet their enemies lost some of their men also, so that they have gotten no great bargaine by their treacherous stratagem.² || William Ingler – Certaine Informations (P)

¹ incautious
² Mercurius Civicus also reports this incident (issue 1, 4-11 May 1643), although Mercurius Aulicus (20 May, twentieth week pp.263-264) denies the Parliamentarian troops were there due to a counterfeit letter, alleging they went to the town in the hope of it being betrayed.

Earl of Northampton wins skirmish at Middleton Cheney

In Northamptonshire, Oxfordshire on May 6 at 8:21 pm

6 May 1643 (Sat) || This night late came a messenger with an Expresse from Banbury to Oxford, declaring what an absolute victory it pleased God to grant the Earle of Northampton over the Rebels at Middleton Cheney, not farre from Banbury; the particulars thus. About twelve of the clocke today my Lord had certaine notice of the Rebells being at Culworth, whereupon my Lord drew out his forces towards Bodicot within a miles of Banbury, where he saw the Enemy (being about 700 Foot and 4 or 5 Troopes of Horse) on the other side the River; his Lordship sent a party commanded by cap. Trist to face them, and keep them in action; which the Cap performed so well & souldierlike that he put the enemy into a posture of retreating; then my Lord drew up all his Horse, being about 10 or 12 troops (for his Regiment of Foot was at the Leaguer) & found the enemy in a close body in Middleton Cheney Towne field, where they made a stand & gave fire upon his Lordship with their brasse peece 3 severall times, & then gave him a very hot volley of musket shot: which done, His Lordship charged them on the front, Sergeant Major Daniel on the right wing, & Cap. Trist on the left: sone of my Lords horse pursued theirs, killed & tooke many of them, yet the rest were so fleet that they escaped in small companies into by-lanes and hedges and ranne to Northampton to tell the newes to their Brethren. But to avoid former errours of overhasty pursuing their fugitive horse, his Lordship charged their foote, & wholly routed them, killed 217 upon the place, and tooke above 300 prisoners, tooke their brasse peece, all their Ammunition, 416 muskets, 150 pikes, and almost 500 swords: his Lordship lost but 3 men and none of any note, nor any officer so much as hurt save onely Major Daniell had a slight hurt in the Legge, the prisoners that were taken say they were commanded to march towards Banbury by the Committee, which as farre as we can gather was upon some treachery to be practiced on Banbury Towne and Castle being my Lords quarters, for there were Banbury men amongst these Rebels, & many of them lay dead in the field; there were divers Captained and commanders taken, Captaine Martin, Captaine Melvin a Scottish man, with others whom we shall know better to morrow when they are examined. The Reader may here see His Majesties exceeding mercy, & clemency, that hath not burned to the ground this most wicked rebellious Towne of Banbury, which hath so often provoked Him, and will take no warning. || John Berkenhead/Peter Heylyn – Mercurius Aulicus (R)


Royalists allegedly burn houses at Banbury

In Oxfordshire on May 4 at 8:47 pm

4 May 1643 (Thu) || From Banbury in Oxfordshire it is certified that the Cavaliers there have burned about an 100. houses in that Towne downe to the ground, because as is Reported the Inhabitants thereof refused to pay the summes of money they are taxed at, for the maintenance of the Kings Army. || William Ingler – Certaine Informations (P)

Parliamentarian scoutmaster assassinated near Oxford

In Oxfordshire on May 3 at 2:32 pm

3 May 1643 (Wed) || This day came newes that Bulmore one of the Scoutmasters of the Rebels Army, (a fellow that had robbed more passengers, rifled more Carriers, and intercepted more letters, then all the villaines in the pack) was killed at Whateley [Wheatley] by a Gentleman in His Majesties service: who faining himself (being asked the question) to be for the King and Parliament, rid quietly with him and his associates being 16 in number; untill they came to Whateley Bridge. Bulmore and his companions having a designe to give an alarme to His Majesties quarters. But the Gentleman spying an handsome opportunity, shot him in the head, and strooke him stone dead (as they say) with a pocket-pistoll, and making speed into the Towne raised up His Majesties Horse which were quartered there, and pursued the Rebels, who made such hast to save themselves, that they cast downe the senselesse Carkasse of their Leader, by which His Majesties souldiers was conveied to Whateley, where it may open for a time a spectacle of contempt and scorne to the eies of all men. || John Berkenhead/Peter Heylyn – Mercurius Aulicus (R)