From the Belfast News Letter of May 18 1739 (which is May 29 in the modern calendar):
TURKEY. Belgrade, April 22.
Advices from the frontiers not only confirm the disgrace of the late grand vizir, but also add, that he has been strangled, and all his effects confiscated; and that count Bonneval is recall’d from his exile.
The same letters add, that it has been resolv’d to carry the standard of Mahomet into the field the ensuing compaign, which is never done but in the greatest exigency, it being generally believed that standard came from heaven under the protection of the angel Gabriel, who gave it to Mahomet to use it to destroy the Christians.
It is to be remark’d, that this whole banner is not to be carried into the field, only a piece of it tied to another made after the same manner; which precaution is used for fear this valuable deposit should be run away with by the enemy.
[The Ottoman empire was at war with Russia and other Christian powers at this time. A horrifying February 1739 News Letter report had revealed how the Grand Vizir, the prime minister of the empire, had brutally and spontaneously beheaded a popular military commander who was asked why he was making insufficient progress in that war, but whose answer had failed to impress. This savage execution was said to have caused public dismay.
In this report, the Grand Vizir has himself been killed. He was junior to the Ottoman emperor, the Grand Seigneur.
The News Letter two editions previous to this one, of May 11 1739, had reported how the Kan — the ruler — of the Tartars, a people in an area that is now approximately Mongolia, had been in Constantinople pushing for peace with the Christian powers.
In a reference that has resonance today, the Kan was reported to have said that “the Crimea was in no condition to support themselves under another invasion from the Muscovites”. The Grand Vizir “and his creatures” were said to reject the Kan’s advice.
The Grand Vizir, after his overthrow as reported above, was replaced by a “prudent man and an experienced general”, which, the News Letter of May 15 had reported, were “two qualities his predecessor was not possess’d of”]
POLAND. Warsaw, April 29.
We hear from the Ukraine, that the veldt-marshal count Munich is arrived at Kiow, in order to take upon him the command of the Russian grand army. As that army is to remain chiefly upon the defensive, it has been resolved to assemble it on the banks of the river Ozel towards the lines of Czariczenska, to the end that the troops may be at hand to defend themselves as well against the Turks as the Tartars.
We hear that the cham of the Crim is preparing to second the Porte’s enterprize against Asoph.
ENGLAND. Bristol, May 5.
Yesterday about eleven o’clock, Mr. John Kimmerly, and John Philips the two persons who receiv’d sentence of death at the late general goal delivery for this city and county, were conveyed by a guard of constables from Newgate, in a mourning coach and four attended by a rev. divine to the usual place of execution on St. Michael’s Hill.
From the time Mr. Kimmerly entered upon the cart till his execution was finished, was about an hour and a half; and tho’ the rope broke three sundry times and his neck much hurt by the ropes, as it bruised by his falls, so that his shirt was stained with blood, yet, during all the time he behave with great Christian courage; but employed each interval, while other ropes were providing, in solemn addresses to Heaven; forgiving and begging forgiveness of all men.
The fourth time he got upon the cart, he again address’d himself to the people, and confess’d the killing of Mr James Burgess; but that he had no design so to do, nor any malice towards him; tho’ he attributed his misfortune to the common consequence of keeping bad company; which he hop’d all men would be warn’d against.
As to John Philips, he all along behav’d very stupid, and denied the fact for which he suffer’d.
Ipswich, April 26.
On Wednesday last our sessions ended, when one Sherman was set in the pillory for sodomitical practices: it is said that three other persons have left the town for the like facts.
FRANCE. Paris May 16.
Four prisoners detained for debt in Forr l’Eveque desired the goaler on Sunday to get a breakfast ready for them, while they went to hear mass; and upon their return made him stay with them; then one of them, as they began to eat, flung a sack full of dust over his head, and tied it under his chin; and the others in the mean while took the keys from him, and open’d the gates; by which means they all four escaped.
We hear from Liege, that there has ben an insurrection of the Populace there, caused by the dearness of bread.
LONDON, May 10.
[Yesterday] the right hon. the lord Walpole, eldest son to Sir Robert Walpole, was sworn auditor of the exchequer, in the room of the said deceased earl, a place worth 8000l. per annum.
[This is £1.8m in today’s money]
As was Edward Walpole, Esq;, also sworn a clerk of the pell-office in his Majesty’s exchequer, in the room of lord Walpole, his brother. And in the evening they kissed his Majesty’s hand for the same.
Leghorn, April 25.
Notwithstanding matters have been carried on with the utmost animosity and violence between the French and the Corsicans, giving no quarter on either side, the face of affairs begins to change in that island. The malecontents at present set at liberty the prisoners they take, as do the French on their part, nor are there any other ravages committed: It is not said whether this be done by vertue of any particular agreement, but all things continue quiet among the French; nor is there any further talk of attacking Monte-Maggiore. It is believ’d that there is a negociation on foot to put an end to the troubles in that island.
Private letters by the Bonnetta, Capt. Wheatly from Savannah in Jamaica, advise, that there had been a smart engagement in that island between the Negroes, commanded by Capt. Chagoa, and two parties of soldiers, under the command of Capt. Gutteridge and lieutenant Sadler; the latter was assisted by great numbers of the natives, call’d Shots: In which engagement several on both sides were kill’d and wounded, but the blacks at last were overpower’d, and drove by the English into a town situate on the mountains, and soon desired to capitulate upon the terms of being made a free people, and having liberty to form plantations.
If these were granted they promised that the English should not be molested but have free liberty to bring their goods to market; and that if that island should be invaded by any foreign enemies, Capt. Chagoa would, on notice given him by the governour, assist the said island with his forces.
Two councils were held on this affair and a peace on the conditions aforesaid concluded, so that this island not enjoys a perfect tranquility.