London: For Benjamin Tooke, 1684. First Edition. Small Folio. Item #025638
The three tryals (trials) are bound together in a single volume since their lives were intertangled. Each with their own title page; 34pp, 78pp. and 56pp. In the development of English law, the Crown successfuly accused Sir Samuel Bardardiston of writing liberlous private letters. This case was one of the most celebrated in English law [see Stephens, History of Criminal Law, p. 313-314); In the letters, Bardardiston had questioned the existence of the "sham" popish plot and had criticized members of the government and the bench, including the judge, William Scroggs, who subsequently sat at Barnardiston's trial. Chief Justice Jeffreys was challenged by Bardardiston who in turn told the jury he had offered no proof of his allegations. It helps to understand that in the 1680's, judges and Crown lawyers disparagingly referred to questions of knowledge and malice as mere formalities. Having such knowledge not in the interest of the Crown was an indication in itself of complicity. Barnariston was fined £10,000 and remanded to prison. These three cases are among the most important in the turbulent period before the Glorious Revolution. Later that year, John Turner published the overall view of the conspirators in his work The History of the Whiggish-plot, or, a brief historical account of the charge and defence of Barnardiston, Braddon Speak, and John Hamden..(London, 1684). Bound in full panerled calf, earlier rebacking retaining the original gilt spine, a handfull of pages with contemporary lines in margins highlighting specifics of the Braddon and Speke trial. A very nice copy.