Extracts from a Jacobite Manifesto, dated at Lucca, Italy, 10 September 1722. This is a Jacobite call for George I, the Elector of Hanover to give up the throne of England and Scotland to its rightful king, James Francis Edward, the son of James VII and II and request for other countries to help. (SP 35/33 f.28).
…we declare that provided the Elector of Hanover will deliver quietly to us the possession of our own Kingdoms, we will make no inquisition [investigation] for anything that is past; we will acknowledge [give] him in the same dignity [respect] of King in his native [own] Dominions [country], inviting all other Princes and States to do the same, we will live in brotherly amity [friendship] with him, and contribute all our endeavours [efforts] to establish him, and his family in prosperity and Royal Grandeur, where an un-contested right will free him from the Crime and Reproach of Tyranny [criticize him as an absolute ruler] and Usurpation [stealing the throne], and a quiet conscience make a Crown fit easy upon his head: leaving at the same time his succession to our Dominions [lands] secure, [whenever] in due Course his natural right Shall take place.
Let him compare a calm undisturbed Reign over a willing and obedient people his natural born Subjects, with the restless unquiet possession of an Usurper in a strange Land, where authority forcing the inclinations [against the wishes] of the people, can only be supported by blood, violence, and rapine; eternally Subject to fears and allarms, even when no danger appears, for guilt can never rest. Let him consider a fixt and solid Establishment of Regal power in him-self and his posterity, exposed to no chance, with the frail and uncertain settlement of an usurped title, which must and Shall, whilst we have breath, or any Descendants in being, be for ever disputed. Let him reflect that the Divine Justice never fails sooner or later to chastise [punish those who do wrong] the oppressor, and to redress the innocent and injur’d. Instead of advising with an Imperious Ministry, as much his Tyrants as the Nations, Let him consult his reason, let him ask his conscience, let him examine his interest and his glory, nay his very ambition will advise him to descend [give up the throne] from a throne, which must be always Shaking, to mount another where his feat will be firm and secure.
We conjure [encourage] all Christian Princes and States to be aiding and assisting to us in this just and amicable [peaceful] proposal, whereby without effusion of blood [bloodshed], or any national or publick disturbance, justice may be done to an injur’d Prince, and an Equivalent [justice] provided sufficient to content an aspiring [hopeful] one.
As a further inducement [encouragement] to all Christian Powers to enter more furiously and deliberately into this important proposition, we offer our-self to make good on our part all such alliances as have been allready contracted with our Kingdoms, conducive [useful] to the peace and tranquillity of Europe, and to enter into any new ones, that may be judged necessary for the farther strengthening and securing thereof.
That there may likewise remain no objection from the fears and apprehensions [worries] of any one man in our own dominions, conscious of having offended against us, we promise a full, free, and universal pardon to all persons of whatever degree or condition within our Realms, without any exception, who Shall in an reasonable time return to their allegiance, or by any act and deed, advice or otherwise effectively contribute to Such a happy accommodation as may put a period to all our private and publick misfortunes: that every English man may hereafter live quietly under his own Shade, enjoy his conscience undisturbed, and rest upon his pillow in peace.
We protest [declare] solemnly before God, and man that nothing can be proposed to us to make our Kingdoms happy and flourishing, and to quiet the minds of all men, but we will Strive with the most zealous to promote.
Our desire is to embrace the whole body of our people without any distinction or reserve, to root up the very seeds of prejudice and division, That all notes of discord [troubled times], separation, or difference of partys [different political groups], and all reproachfull denominations [shameful groups of people or churches] may be for ever extinguished [got rid of], and that the King and his people may have but one mind, one heart and one interest.
That humanity, that love of our Country, and that good will to all men which we make the rule of our actions, prompt and incline us in the first place to the ways of mercy and peace. It is therefore that waving all present application to foreign powers, who considering how much in reality our cause is their own, might reasonably be induced to aid us in vindicating [defending] that majesty [king] which they behold [see] opprest [oppressed] and Affronted [insulted] in our person, and sacrificing all resentment, passion, or desire of Revenge, to the publick good, we now seek and condescend to shake hands, even with those who have most injur’d us.
Given at our Court at Lucca this present tenth of September 1722, and in the twenty first year of our Reign.
Since we first proposed to publish this our Declaration to the world, it is come to our knowledge that divers [several] of our Subjects continue dayly to be question’d and imprison’d upon pretence of intelligence with us: That informers, Spy’s, and false witnesses are become so numerous and are so openly caress’d and encourag’d, that no innocence is safe: That the terror of these arbitrary [unreasonable] and violent proceedings, is become dreadfull to all men, not excepting the very army, where without any regard to past services, the poor soldier is expos’d to cruell and unmercifull punishments upon the testimony [statements] of secret informers [spies] without any other crime pretended but bare suspicion of affection to us and our Cause [soldiers being punished because they are sympathetic to the Jacobite cause].
We think it therefore a farther duty incumbent upon us, as a Christian King, and the common father of our people to interpose on behalf of the innocent, and to forewarn all Judges, Justices, privy Councellors, or Councellors, Officers, and Commanders in chief, Magistrates of all degrees Sheriffs and persons Sworn upon Jury’s to take especial heed how they rashly involve themselves in the crime of persecuting the innocent, or dip their hands in the blood of the guilt-less: For we are resolv’d to keep a strict and exact account of the sufferings of the very meanest [poorest] of our people.