STAC 5/A37/39r

From Waalt

Les reportes del cases in Camera Stellata, 1593 to 1609 from the original ms. of John Hawarde edited by William Paley Baildon Published 1894 Pages 29-30

In Camera Stellata, 30 Januarij 38 Elizabeth [1595-6], coram consilio predicto, excepto Johanne Fortescue. B. de Londres fuit present ore.

The former cause on the information of the Queens Attorney against Thomas Harwood was answered by [Page 30] Phillips and Serjeant Healle. And they endeavoured to disprove the evidence of Winter by divers circumstances, one as to accusing himself to a woman, which was incredible to the Lords that any man should accuse himself to a woman, and which was impossible to be believed. And finally they laboured to upset [destroyer] the bill as it lies, because the forgery is not applied to any estate certain, and the name of the lands is not certainly mentioned and [relying] on Diar, 12 Elizabeth, which was denied to be law. Moreover the forgery was read as forgery at Common Law, which was before any Statute; and it was found that the lands were certainly named in the bill; and so they proceeded to sentence, which was agreed upon by all the Lords with one consent. Anderson first: It is a forgery in Harward, and therefore he is to be fined £500, and to be imprisoned during the Queens pleasure, and to lose his two ears on the pillory. And they insist principally on this that as the said forged will follows in every respect the true will to the end, it proves that he had seen and read the true will before he published the forged one. Therefore it is well for every one to have good advice and very good witnesses if he wish to write or interpose any article in a will after the death of the testator; for it ought to be annexed as a codicil and not written in the will itself; and Ordinaries ought to have special care to receive special proof in the probate of wills. The Earl of Essex agreed with the sentence of the Court, and the rather, because a wise man, many hundred years before he sat in this place, complained of the injuriousness of the times (quedam homines magis anulis quam animis) that men, through their ill governance of themselves, give more credence and faith to mens writings than to their words, and so it is to this day. Therefore the intentions of an evil man should be here examined, and he should be judged accordingly, and all magistrates ought to examine the intentions of men in their offences, and the ignorance of fact and the feebleness of the party, and so to punish evil intentions.

See also STAC Harwood