Jane Lane and Charles II

Jane Lane and Charles II

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

October 10 and 11, 1651 - Another new plan - will this one succeed?

Charles spent October 10 and 11 as he had spent the days since October 6, hidden in the secret little chamber at Heale House, with Mrs. Hyde and her sister bringing him food, and waiting for further news.

On the morning of Friday, October 10, Colonel Gounter, once more having had very little sleep, set out from his house to Chichester to meet Francis Manรงel or Mansell, the French merchant who he hoped would be able to provide a ship to get the king out of England.  “The marchant being destitute of a horse,” Gounter lent him the horse that Mr. Hyde had lent him the previous night and borrowed one for himself from his cousin Captain Thomas Gounter, who he sent to Lord Wilmot to report on how plans were progressing.

Brighton in the late 18th century
Colonel Gounter and Mansell arrived at Brighthelmstone (now Brighton) at about two o’clock, but “the seaman [Mansell] chiefly depended on” had gone to Chichester, where he was to pick up some freight. Fortunately, “as Providence would have it,” Captain Tattersall was touching at Shoreham, only four miles from Brighthelmstone.  Gounter persuaded Mansell “to send to him immediately to come to him upon earnest business,” and asked Mansell to handle the negotiations, such matters “being his affaire and trade … promising the marchant to make good and pay him whate’re he should agree for, but withall desired to get it as low as he could.”
Brighton in the early 19th century

Tattersall insisted “he would knowe what he should carrie, or he would not treate,” so Mansell told Tattersall what Gounter had told him – that he would be carrying as passengers a couple of gentlemen who had to get out of England because they had been involved in a duel.  By two a.m. on Saturday, October 11, Gounter, Mansell, and Tattersall had “made a parfect agreement.”  Tattersall would get sixty pounds “in hand, before he tooke them into the boate,” and on Tuesday, October 13, he “was to bee in readiness upon an hower’s warning and … to stay there under pretence of fraughting his barke, to see all things in readiness against the Colonel and his twoe friends arrival.” 

Gounter had to go make arrangements to get the king to Shoreham, but “privatly promised the marchant to defray all his charges, and to give him fifty pounds as aforesaid for his peynes, which was afterwards accordingly done….

1583 map of southern coast of England
"Brighthelm" at right and "Shoram" to its left

“All things agreed upon, the Colonel tooke leave of the marchant about 3 of the clock, with all expedition to give my Lord Wilmot this account.”  He arrived at Hyde’s house, where Wilmot had been staying, between eight and nine that night, only to learn that Wilmot and Thomas Gounter had gone to the home of a Mr. Browne, a tenant of Hyde who had married Thomas Gounter’s sister.  But Hyde was home, as well as Colonel Phelipps, “in his chamber goeing to bed, who was very inquisitive to knowe how things stood.”

When Gounter told Phelipps the much-hoped for news that “all things were well and in a readines … the noble Colonel Philipps replyed, ‘Thou shalt bee a sainct in my almanack for ever.’”  Hyde urged Gounter to stay the night, but “he knew he was expected, and could not in honour but give his account without delay.”

Church of St. Mary de Haura, Shoreham
the name means St. Mary at the Harbor
It was falling into disrepair even in the 17th century
Phelipps insisted on accompanying Gounter to tell Lord Wilmot the good news.  When Gounter “had saluted him and given him a full account of all the proceedings, the noble Lord was infinitly pleased and satisfied.”  They agreed that Phelipps would go to fetch the king, “by reason that Colonel Gounter was much tyred, and would need rest for further imployement.”

It seemed that finally things were going as hoped.

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