Reported 280 Years Ago (April 1739): Irish peer to face trial in Dublin for murder of man

The Belfast News Letter of March 23 1738 (which is April 3 1739 in the modern calendar)
The Belfast News Letter of March 23 1738 (which is April 3 1739 in the modern calendar)
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From the Belfast News Letter of March 23 1738, which was the ‘last’ News Letter of the year under the old calendar, in which the new year, 1739, began on March 25. The date is equivalent to April 3 1739 in the modern calendar, because we would consider all of March to be in 1739, and because of an 11-day time lag between the calendars:

DUBLIN, March 20.

Last Tuesday pass’d the Great Seal, a Commission, appointing his Excellency Thomas Wyndham, Lord Baron of Finglass, Lord High Steward of Ireland, for trying the Rt. Hon, Henry Barry, Lord Baron of Santry; and on Wednesday, the Right Hon. Thomas Carter, Serjeant at Arms, issued Summonses to the peers of the Kingdom to meet on Friday, the 27th of April, at the Parliament House, for trying his Lordship, pursuant to a Precept from the Lord High Steward.

[This refers to a highly controversial and long-running episode in which a young Irish peer who had a reputation for heavy drinking plunged a knife into a porter in a tavern outside Dublin in the summer of 1738, causing him to die weeks later of his injuries. There was a long running attempt to stop Baron Santry facing justice, on account of his aristocratic status, but he did duly face trial, as the above report confirms, and on which coming newspapers will report.

Lord Santry was entitled to be tried by his peers, fellow Lords, to be held in the Irish parliament]

LONDON March 10.

Letters from Amsterdam say, that the States General having learn’d that the Negociation begun between the Courts of Great Britain and France, for the Conclusion of a Treaty of Commerce, remain’d suspended, and that even a Coldness had happen’d between the two Courts, have judg’d this a favourable Opportunity for once more attempting to renew the Tarriff with France, as their High Mightiness are desirous that such a Renewal should be upon the Footing of the Treaty concluded in the Year 1697, to which his most Christian Majesty has hitherto refus’d to consent.

They have lately sent Instructions to their Ambassador at Paris, to use his utmost Efforts to engage the Ministers of the Court of France to draw up in Concert with him a Plan of Renewal, which by Means of certain Modifications should be conformable to the Treaty of 1697, and that of 1667; or that if his most Christian Majesty would consent that the Scheme of a new Tariff should be drawn up at the Hague, their High Mightiness Ministers of State should prepare the principal Articles, in Concert with the Marquis de Fenelon, Ambassador from France, to be afterwards approv’d of by the King.

[The States General was the legislature of the United Provinces, the predecessor of the Netherlands]

There is now much Talk of the Promotion of the Prince of Orange to the Degree of Lieutenant-General, which Post was offered him eight or ten Years ago, and which, if he had not then refus’d, would certainly have pav’d the Way for his being now created General. It is said the Reason of his Highness accepting of this Post is, that he apprehends the Province of Friesland will, thro’ the earnest Sollicitation of the other Provinces, desist from publickly requiring of his Highness to be made General of the Infantry, which that Province has not fail’d to do for eight Years. It’s likewise reported, that the General Officers that shall be comprehended in this Promotion, have determined to yield his Highness the Rank of Seniority.

[After the victor at the Battle of the Boyne, William of Orange (William III of England) died in 1702 without children, there was a dispute which led the Treaty of Partition 1732, after which William IV of the Dutch United Provinces and Frederick William I of Prussia shared the title Prince of Orange. This story seems to refer to the former, then aged 27.]


Since my last arrived the Elizabeth of Aaron, James Shaw, with Herrings. — The Jane of Combris, Thomas Fairy, with Coals. — The Betty, Mr. William Satherthweat; the Hopewell, James Mitchell; the Satisfaction, Samuel Gawith, all from Pelafoutre, with Oak Bark. — Also, the Diligence, Robert Dodson, from Pelafoutre, with Rungs for Hoops.


THAT on Wednesday the fourth Day of APRL next, at Dunseverick, in the Parish of Billy, and County of Antrim, will be exposed to Sale by publick Cant, all the Houshold Furniture of HECTOR McNEAL, Esq; deceased; consitsing of Beds, Bed-Cloaths, Feather-Beds, Chairs, Tables, Chest of Drawers, all Utensils for a Kitchen; together with Horses, Corn, and some choice Rye-Grass See. The Cant to begin at Ten o’Clock, and continue until all be sold.

N.B. All Purchasers must pay read Money.