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the custody of the mayor, and the other of the theriff; but their lands and goods were not feized.
Waller was still to immerse himself deeper in ignominy. The earl of Port-land and lord Conway denied the charge, and there was no evidence against them but the confession of Waller, of which undoubtedly many would be inclined to question the veracity. With these doubts he was so much terrified, that he endeavoured to persuade Portland to a declaration like his own, by a letter extant in Fenton's edition.“ But for me,” says he, “ you had ne6 ver known any thing of this business, “ which was prepared for another; and “ therefore I cannot imagine why you: “ should hide it so far as to contract “ your own ruin by concealing it, and “ persisting unreasonably to hide that “ truth, which, without you, already is, “ and will every day be made more, “ manifeft. Can you imagine yourself “ bound in honour to keep that secret, “ which is already revealed by another ; “ or possible it should still be a secret, « which is known to one of the other “ sex?_If you perfist to be cruel to “ yourself for their fakes who deserve “ it not, ii will nevertheless be made " appear, ere long, I fear, to your ruin. “ Surely, if I had the happiness to wait “ on you, I could move you to com“ passionate both yourself and me, who, “ desperate as my case is, am defirous
* to die with the honour of being 66 known to have declared the truth. “ You have no reason to contend to “ hide what is already revealed-incon“ fiderately to throw away yourself, for " the interest of others, to whom you " are less obliged than you are aware 66 of."
This persuasion seems to have had little effect. Portland sent (June 29) a letter to the Lords, to tell them, that he “ is in custody, as he conceives, with5.out any charge; and that, by what “ Mr. Waller hath threatened him with "" since he was imprisoned, he doth ap6 prehend a very cruel, long, and ruin« ous restraint :-He therefore prays, 66 that he may not find the effects of
“ Mr. Waller's threats, by a long and “ close imprisonment; but may be -“ speedily brought to a legal trial, and
“ then he is confident the vanity and -66 falsehood of those informations which
“ have been given against him will ap.6 pear.”
In consequence of this letter, the Lords ordered Portland and Waller to be confronted; when the one repeated his charge, and the other his denial. The examination of the plot being continued (July 1), Thinn, usher of the house of Lords, deposed, that Mr. Waller having had a conference with the lord Portland in an upper room, lord Portland said, when he came down,“ Do “ me the favour to tell my lord North« umberland, that Mr. Waller has ex“ tremely pressed me to save my own “ life and his, by throwing the blame “ upon the lord Conway and the earl 56 of Northumberland.”
66 umberland, reality,
Waller, in his letter to Portland, tells him of the reasons, which he could urge with refifless efficacy in a perfonal conference; but he over-rated his own oratóry : his vehemence, whether of persuafion or intreaty, was returned with contempt. "
One of his arguments with Portland is, that'the plot is already known to a woman. This woman was doubtless lady Aubigny, who, upon this occasion, was committed to custody; but who, in