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Proof was made that she was married to Rowland, in the year 1713, at a house in the Mint, Southwark, and that six years afterwards, while her husband was abroad, she was again married, in the same house, to Conftantine Boone; but Rowland, foon returning to England, caused his wife to be indicted for this crime.
The prisoner did not hesitate to acknowledge the double marriage, but insisted that the latter was illegal, as Boone was an hermaphrodite, and had been shewn as such at Southwark and Bartholomew fairs, and at other places.
To prove this a person swore that he knew Boone when a child, that his (or ber) mother dressed it in girls apparel, and caused it to be instructed in needle-work, till it had attained the age
of twelve years, when it turned man, and went to sea.
These last words were those of the deposition ; and the fact was confirmed by Boone, who appeared in court, acknowledged being an hermaphrodite, and having been publicly shewn in that character.
Other witnesses deposed that the female sex prevailed over that of the male in the party in question : on which the jury acquitted the prifoner.
It is impossible to describe how much this affair was the subject of the public conversation at, and long after, the time that it happened: and it would be idle to make any serious remarks on it. We can only express our : astonishment that an hermaphrodite should think of such a glaring ab surdity as the taking a wife !
Narrative of the Trial and Execution of JOHN
MATTHEWS, a Printer, who was hanged for
ter in Aldersgate-Street, to whom he was apprenticed; but his father dying, he continued to ferve with his mother. Having made connections with fome persons of Jacobitical principles, he printed some papers against the government, for which he was once taken into custody ; but the evidence being incomplete, he was dismissed.
Encouraged by this escape, he was induced to print a pamphlet, entitled« Ex ore tuo te Ju«c dico : Vox populi, vox Dei *.” For this of fence he was brought to his trial, on the 30th of October, 1719, when it appeared that he had composed the pages of the pamphlet in question, but locked them up, left they sh uld be found, and made use of to his prejudice.
An elder brother of Matthews, apprehending that the youth might endanger himself by his propensity to the printing such pamphlets, directed a journeyman, named Lawrence Vezey, to lock up the door of the printing-house every night, and bring him the key: but Vezey, like a villain as he was, first suffered the young fellow to print the supposed treasonable matter, and then gave evidence against him.
A general warrant being granted by the secretary of state, for the search of Mrs. Matthews's
* That is, “Out of thy own mouth will I judge “thee :- The Voice of the People is the Voice of rc God.” Vol. I, No. 7.
house, the bloodhounds of government found a number of the supposed libel in a room which the prisoner acknowledged to belong to him; on which he was carried before the secretary of state, who committed him to Newgate, on his refusing to give up the author.
When Matthews was arraigned at the bar, Vezey swore that the prisoner brought the form, containing part of the book, to the press, and bid him pull a proof of it; which he did, and that the prisoner afterwards caine down to him, and said that the pages had been transposed, but he had now put them right; and he then pulled him another proof; he said that then the prisoner desired this evidence to come early in the morning to work off the sheets, saying that he himself would take care of the paper, and that every thing should be ready.
Accordingly Vezey went early one morning, intending to call up William Harper, the apprentice; but the prisoner came to the door, let him in, and called Harper, who affifted Vezey in working off the sheets, Matthews standing by, and taking them from the press, for the greater expedition: and when the work was done the prisoner paid Vezey for his trouble. This evidence was likewise confirmed by Harper, as far as he was concerned in the transaction, and he added that he saw the prisoner composing the matter * from the manuscript copy.
The council for the crown exerted their utmost
“Compofing the matter” is a term with printers, which signifies picking up the letters, and arranging them in proper order for their being worked off by the printing-press.
abilities to aggravate the crime of the prisoner, and the king's messengers swearing to as much as they knew of the affair, Matthews was found guilty, and sentence of death was passed on him.
After condemnation he was attended by the Reverend Mr. Skerrett, who also accompanied him to the place of execution. His whole behaviour after sentence was such as might be expected from one who had too mnch sense to expećt favour from the people then in power: for it was not customary with the ministers of George the first to extend mercy to persons convicted of treasonable offences: but perhaps their seeming want of humanity will appear the more excusable, if we reflect on the fatal consequences that might have ensued from the rebellion in 1715.
But nothing can excuse the method they took to obtain evidence in this case. It is but of late years that the issuing of general warrants has been legally condemned; and Englishmen are not a little obliged to a man, who (whatever his faults may be) has procured the condemnation of these warrants. Happily, we can now sit quietly, and write our sentiments in our own houses, without being liable to have our papers seized by the arbitrary mandates of a secratary of state. While we recollect that we are obliged for this favour in a great degree to the perseverance of Mr. Wilkes, we should not forget that the judicial determination of Lord Camden perfected the plan so happily begun, and so steadily pursued.
The above-mentioned John Matthews was executed at Tyburn on the 16th of November, 1719, before he had completed the 19th year of his age , and was pitied by every one who had not lost the cominon feelings of humanity, Ii2
From the fate of Matthews young gentlemen in the same line of business should be taught to be cautious how they engage in the printing of political pamphlets; for though, to the credit of the good sense and humanity of the present age, there. is now much less danger than there forinerly was, yet recent experience has taught us that great trouble and expence may ensue, where all risk of life is out of the question.
We should all pray that we may live to fee the time when the liberty of the press will be established in its fullest extent; and when no villain will dare to be guilty of an attrocious action; but some honest man shall dare to tell him of it in public. By this, however, we do not mean to encourage the licentiousness of the press-Detested be.'the heart that should dictate, and the hand that should write a line to destroy domestic happiness, or corrode the mind of one worthy individual : but the public villain should be ever held up an object of the public scorn and cenfure !
Account of the Life and Trial of THOMAS BUT
LER, Esq. who was executed for a Robbery on
army king James the second ; but king William having defeated that prince at the battle of the Boyne, young Butler and his father went with James to France : but when the rebellion broke out in Scotland the young gentleman was employed as a