An Act for the speedy and effectuall reducing of the Rebells in his Majesties Kingdome of Ireland to theire due obedience to his Majesty & the Crowne of England aka “The Adventurers Act” – Charles I, 1640; proclaimed 9 March 1642
Reasons for passing this Act.
Many Millions of Acres of Land of the Rebels to be confiscate.
Whereas the Lords and Commons taking into theire serious consideration as well the necessity of a speedy reducing of the Rebells of Ireland to theire due obedience as alsoe the great su[m]ms of Money that the Commons of this Realme have of late paid for the publique and necessary affaires of this Kingdome whereof the Lords and Commons are very sensible and desirous to imbrace all good and honourable wayes tending to his Majesties greatnesse and profit the setling of that Realme and the ease of his Majesties Subjects of England And whereas diverse worthy and well affected persons perceiving that many millions of Acres of the Rebells Lands of that Kingdome which go under the name of profitable Lands will be confiscate and to be disposed of And that in case two millions and [an (fn. 1) ] halfe of those Acres to be equally taken out of the four Provinces of that Kingdome may be allotted for the satisfaction of such persons as shall disburse any su[m]ms of money for the reducing of the Rebells there would effectually accomplish the same have made these Propositions ensuing (viz.)
Two Millions and a Half of such Acres allotted to the Adventurers.
1. That two millions and an halfe of those Acres may be assigned allotted and divided amongst them after this proportion (viz) For each Adventure of two hundred pounds one thousand Acres in Ulster For three hundred pounds one thousand Acres in Conaght. For foure hundred and fifty pounds one thousand Acres in Munster For six hundred pounds one thousand Acres in Leinster All according to the English measure and consisting of Meadowe Arable and profitable Pasture the Bogs Woods and barren Mountains being cast in over and above these two millions and a halfe of Acres to be holden in free and common Soccage of the King as of his Castle of Dublin.
Rent reserved to the Crown.
2. That out of these two millions and a halfe of Acres a constant yearely Rent shall be reserved to the Crowne of England after this proportion (viz) out of each Acre thereof in Ulster one peny Out of each Acre in Conaght three halfe pence Out of each Acre in Munster two pence farthing And out of each Acre in Leinster three pence whereby His Majesties [Revenues (fn. 2) ] out of those Lands will be much improved besides the advantages that He will have by the coming to His hands of all other the Lands of the Rebells and theire personall Estates without any charge [unto (fn. 3) ] his Majestie.
Commissions for erecting of Manors, &c.
3. That for the erecting of Mannors setling of Wasts and Commons maintaining of preaching Ministers creating of Corporations and Regulating of the severall Plantations one or more Commissions be hereafter graunted by Authority of Parliament.
Undertakers to subscribe within limited Times.
4. That Moneys for this great occasion may bee the more speedily advanced All the Undertakers in the Citie of London and within twentie miles distant thereof shall underwrite theire severall su[m]ms before the twentieth day of March one thousand six hundred fortie one and all within sixtie miles of London before the first day of Aprill one thousand six hundred fourtie two and the rest of the Kingdome before the first day of May one thousand six hundred fourtie two.
Sums underwritten to be paid in Four Payments.
5. That the severall su[m]ms to be underwritten shall be paid in at four payments (viz) One fourth part within ten dayes after such underwriting and the other three parts at three Moneths ( (fn. 4) ) and three Monthes all to be paid into the Chamber of London.
A Twentieth Part to be paid down.
6. That for the better securing of the said severall su[m]ms accordingly every one that doth soe underwrite shall at the time of his Subscription pay down the twentieth part of the totall su[m]m that shall be by him then underwritten And in case that the residue of his first fourth part be not paid in to such person or persons as shall be appointed to receive the same within the ten dayes before limited then such party shall not onely forfeit the twentieth part of the su[m]m totall formerly deposited but so much more of his first fourth payment to be added thereunto as shall make up the one moyetie of the said first payment And if the same person shall faile [in (fn. 3) ] any other of the three payments he shall [then (fn. 3) ] forfeit his entire first fourth part and all the benefit of his Subscription which forfeiture shall accrue to the common benefit of the rest of the Underwriters.
And whereas aswell our Soveraigne Lord the King as the Lords and Commons have approved of the said Propositions and assented that the said Proposic[i]ons and all other things necessarily conducing thereunto shall be ratified and confirmed by Authoritie of Parliament. Be it therefore Enacted by our Soveraigne Lord the King with the assent of the Lords and Commons in this present Parliament assembled and by Authoritie of the same That all and every of the said Propositions and every clause therein contained are and shall be according to the tenour and purport thereof hereby ratified established and confirmed with such explanations alterations and additions as in this Act are exprest.
II. Forfeitures of all Persons in Rebellion, after the 23d Oct. 1641.
adjudged to be in the actual possession of the Crown.
And be it further enacted That all and every person and persons which upon the three and twentieth day of October in the yeare One thousand six hundred fourtie one or at any time after shall be in Rebellion or levie War against the Kings Majestie within his Realme of Ireland or shall willingly aid assist or countenance any person or persons in Rebellion against the Kings Majestie shall lose and forfeit unto the Kings Majestie His Heires and Successors all such right title interest use and possession which they [are (fn. 5) ] any of them or any other person or persons in trust for them or any of them on the said three and twentieth day of October or at any time after shall have of in or unto any Honours Castles Mannors Messuages Lands Tenements Rents Annuities Reversions Remainders Uses Possessions Offices Rights Conditions or any other Hereditaments of what name nature or qualitie soever they be and that all such right title interest use and possession which they or any of them or any other person or persons in trust for them or any of them on the said three and twentieth day of October or at any time after shall have or of right ought to have of in or to the same Honours Castles Mannors Messuages Lands Tenements Rents Annuities Reversions Remainders Uses Possessions Offices Rights Conditions or any other Hereditaments shall by the Authoritie aforesaid bee deemed vested adjudged and taken to be in the actuall and reall possession of Our Soveraigne Lord the King His Heires and Successors without any Office or Inquisition thereof hereafter to be found
III. The said Two Millions and a Half of Acres of Land forfeited shall be allotted for Satisfaction of Money subscribed.
And be it further Enacted by the Authority aforesaid That two Millions and a halfe of Acres of Meadowe Arable Land and profitable Pasture which are or shall be forfeited by the said Rebells or otherwise by vertue of this Act with Woods Boggs Loughs and barren Mountaines cast in over and above and with all the Buildings & Edifices thereupon are and shall be by vertue of this Act for the satisfaction of such person and persons as shall underwrite any su[m]m or su[m]ms of Money and pay the same according to the true intent and meaning of this present Act the same to be allotted & apportioned to each Underwriter according to the proportion of the su[m]ms to be underwritten and paid in and to be holden by such Rent and Tenure as in the said recited Propositions are expressed
IV. Persons nominated to receive Subscriptions in the Chamber of London.
And be it further enacted That John Warner John Towse and Thomas Andrewes Aldermen and Lawrence Halsted Esquire are and shalbe hereby appointed and authorised to give theire daily attendance at the said Chamber of London to receive all such Subscriptions and su[m]ms of Money and to give Receipts for the same under theire hands as shall be there tendred and paid according to this Act which said persons so appointed to receive the said su[m]ms of Money shall enter the names of the Underwriters togeather with the su[m]m and time of Subscription into one or more Bookes to be kept for that purpose and shall from time to time issue out the said su[m]ms of Money in such manner as both Houses of Parliament shall by Order direct.
V. Sheriffs to receive Subscriptions in their several Counties, and return the same with Names, &c. to the Chamber of London.
Account thereof to Parliament.
And be it further enacted That the Sheriffes of each Countie of England and Dominion of Wales shall receive all such Subscriptions and su[m]ms of Money as shall be by vertue of this Act tendred to them in theire respective Counties and shall appoint dayes and places for that Purpose and shall give Receipts for the su[m]ms soe received under theire hands and return the su[m]ms subscribed and received togeather with the Names of the Underwriters and the times of theire Subscriptions to the Chamber of London to the hands of the said John Warner John Towse Thomas Andrewes and Lawrence Halsted or to any two of them with all convenient speed to be by them entred into Bookes to [be (fn. 6) ] kept for that purpose And they the said John Warner John Towse Thomas Andrewes and Lawrence Halsted or any two of them are hereby likewise authorized and required to give Acquittances or Receipts for all su[m]ms received of the said Sheriffs And that the said John Warner John Towse Thomas Andrewes and Lawrence Halsted and the said Sheriffes theire Officers and Ministers theire Heires and Executors shall accompt for all su[m]ms of Money by them received according to this present Act to such persons as both Houses of Parliament shall direct
VI. Allowance to the Receivers.
And be it further Enacted by the Authority aforesaid That it shall and may be lawfull to and for the said John Warner John Towse Thomas Andrewes and Lawrence Halsted and the said Sheriffes respectively to deduct and retain to theire owne use one peny out of every pound of all such su[m]ms of money as they shall receive according to this Act towards theire charges and pains in attending and receiving the said Subscriptions and su[m]ms of money and in issuing out and returning up the same.
VII. Upon Declaration by the Lords and Commons that the Rebels are subdued,
Commissions to issue for the surveying the Lands forfeited, and setting forth the same.; Division to be made by Order of the Lords and Commons, and to be done by Lot; Commissioners to return Allotments into Chancery.
And be it further Enacted That when the Lords and Commons of this Realme of England shall in Parliament by Order declare that the said Rebells are subdued and that this present Rebellion in the said Kingdome of Ireland is appeased and ended that forthwith after such Declaration made and sent to the Lord Chancellor or Lord Keeper of the Great Seale of England for the time being the said Lord Chancellor or Lord Keeper is hereby authorised and required to issue forth Commissions into all the said four Provinces of that Kingdome of Ireland for the surveying and setting forth of the said two Millions and halfe of Acres which Commission shall be to such effect and directed to such persons as the said Lords and Commons in Parliament shall appoint Which said Commissioners shall have power by this Act to survey all the Lands of the said Rebells and all the Lands forfeited by vertue of this Act and to ascertain and measure forth of the same six hundred and five and twentie thousand Acres in every of the said foure Provinces of Meadowe Arable and profitable Pasture with Woods Bogs Loughes and barren Mountaines cast in over and above with the Houses and Edifices thereupon and after the same measured and set forth shall indifferently divide the same by Lot among the severall Underwriters and among the Heires of such Underwriters as shall die before the division and the assignee and assignees of such of the Underwriters as shall assigne theire shares or any part thereof before the said Division according to the proportions mentioned in the said recited Propositions and according to the respective su[m]ms paid in as aforesaid and according to the purport of this present Act which Division shall be made in such manner as the said Lords and Commons in Parliament shall by Order direct in which Division no manner of favour or advantage shall be given or allowed to any person whatsoever but all to be done and determined equally and by Lot and each Underwriters Land to be laid togeather or so neere togeather as conveniently may be And in case six hundred twenty five thousand Acres of the Rebells profitable Lands and of the profitable Lands forfeited by vertue of this Act shall not be found in each province then so much of the said six hundred twentie five thousand Acres as shall be wanting in any [one (fn. 6) ] Province shall be made up in value out of the said Rebells Lands and for want thereof out of the profitable Lands forfeited by this Act in the other Provinces at the discretion of the said Commissioners respect being had to the value of the Lands in each Province according to the said Propositions which said Commissioners shall returne the said allotments and all theire proceedings therein fairely ingrost in Parchment into his Majesties Court of Chancery of this Kingdome there to remaine of Record and into his Majesties Court of Chancery of the [said (fn. 7) ] Kingdome of Ireland to remaine there likewise of Record
VIII. The Persons adjudged to be in Possession after their Lots drawn.
Forfeiture of Lands and Goods.
And be it further enacted that immediately after every Underwriter Heire or Assignee of any Underwriter shall have drawne his respective Lot containing the Meadow Arable and profitable Pasture with all the Woods Bogs Loughs and barren Mountaines over and above togeather with the Houses and Edifices there upon which shall be appointed for his share such Underwriter Heir and Assignee shall be and so shalbe adjudged to be by vertue of this Act in the actuall possession and seisin of all the said Lands with all things thereunto belonging mentioned in his said Lot and that he shall and may forthwith after his Lot so drawn as aforesaid enter upon have and enjoye to him and his heires all and singuler the Meadowe Arable profitable Pasture Woods Bogs Loughs Waters Fishings and barren Mountaines togeather with the Houses and Edifices thereupon and in his said Lot contained with all Easements and Comodities thereunto belonging.
IX. Power after Allotment to create Manors, and hold Courts.
And be it further enacted by the Authority aforesaid That all and every person and persons which within three monthes after the allotment so to be made as aforesaid shall have one thousand Acres or more of the said two Millions & halfe of Acres lying togeather in the Province of Leinster or two thousand Acres or more lying togeather in the Province of Conaght or one thousand five hundred Acres or more lying togeather in the Province of Munster or three thousand Acres or more lying togeather in the Province of Ulster shall have power by vertue of this Act for every such thousand twoe thousand fifteene hundred and three thousand Acres to create a Mannor within the limits of the said Lands respectively and to reserve tenures to hold of himselfe and his heires as of his said Mannor or Mannors at his will and pleasure And that every such person shall have a Court Leet and Court Baron and shall have full power to hold a Court Leete and Court Baron within the Precincts of every such Mannor and to enjoye all such Royalties Franchises Fines and Amerciaments Suites Services and Immunities as to view of Franke pledge or Court Baron is usuall & belonging And alsoe within each respective Mannors to have and enjoye as aforesaid all [Deodans (fn. 8) ] Felons goods and goods of Felons of themselves togeather with all Wayfes and Strayes
X. The Money paid to be employed for reducing the Rebels only.
Overplus how disposed of.
And be it further Enacted by the Authority aforesaid That no part of the money which shall be paid in according to this Act shall be imployed to any other purpose then the reducing of the said Rebels untill the said Rebels shall be declared to be subdued by the said Lords and Commons as aforesaid And that the said moneys shall be imployed for the speedie and effectuall subduing of the said Rebells by sending over into the said Realm of Ireland and disposing there such Forces of Foot and Horse Monies Ammunition Victuall and all other things necessary to a Warre in such manner as the said Lords and Commons in Parliament shall from time to time direct and the overplus of the said money if any shall be to be disposed as the said Lords and Commons shall likewise direct
XI. Plantations regulated, Churches, &c. to be erected.
And be it likewise Enacted by the Authority aforesaid That Plantations shall be regulated Corporations created Churches erected and Preaching Ministers maintained within the Limits and p[re]cincts of the Lands so to be divided in such manner as by Commissioners to be nominated and directed by the said Lords and Commons in Parliament shall be ordered and provided
XII. Lord Chancellor to issue out Commissions.
And it is further Enacted That the Lord Chancellor or Lord Keeper of the great Seale of England for the time being shall upon direction to him given by the said Lords and Commons in Parliament issue out one or more Commissions for this purpose directed to such persons and in such manner as the said Lords and Commons in Parliament shall order and appoint
XIII. Patents granted of Rebels’ Lands, &c. without Consent of Lords and Commons, void, and all Pardons.
And for the further encouraging and securing of all such persons as shall pay any su[m]m of money towards the perfecting of this great Worke Be it likewise Enacted by the Authority aforesaid That all Patents which shall be granted of any of the said Rebels Goods or Lands or of any Goods or Lands forfeited by vertue of this Act and all Pardons which shall be granted to any of the said Rebells before attainder after the three and twentieth of October one thousand six hundred fortie and one (without the assent of the said Lords and Commons in Parliament) shall be adjudged void and of none effect
XIV. Proclamations to be made concerning Claims.
And be it further Enacted by the Authority aforesaid That the Commissioners authorised by this Act to set forth the Underwriters Lands as aforesaid shall fourtie dayes before they set forth the same or any part thereof cause Proclamations to be made by vertue of this Act in every Countie of the said Kingdome of Ireland to this effect (viz) That every person which had any right title or interest the three and twentieth of October one thousand six hundred fourtie one in or out of [any of (fn. 7) ] the said Rebels Lands or [the (fn. 7) ] Lands forfeited by this Act lying within the Countie where any such Proclamac[i]on shall be made shall enter his claim to the same upon record in His Majesties Court of Chancery in the said Kingdome of Ireland within twenty dayes after the said Proclamation so made in the said County
XV. Endeavouring to introduce the Authority of the See of Rome into Ireland.
And be it further Enacted by the Authority aforesaid That every person which after the first day of March one thousand six hundred and fourty shall make enter into or take any Compact Bond Covenant Oath Promise or Agreement to introduce or bring into the said Realm of Ireland the authority of the Sea ( (fn. 9) ) Rome in any case whatsoever or to maintain or defend the same shall by vertue of this Act forfeit to his Majestie his Heires and Successors all his Lands Tenements & Hereditaments entailed or not entailed Goods & Chattels which he had or shall have in his owne name or any other person or persons had or shall have in trust for him at the time of the making entring into or taking any such Compact Bond Covenant Oath Promise or Agreement other then such Lands Tenements Hereditaments Goods and Chattels as shall be bona fide and for valuable considerac[i]ons sold before the said three and twentieth of October one thousand six hundred fourtie one
XVI. Such Rebels as be dead, &c.
Lands and Goods forfeited.
And further be it Enacted by the Authority aforesaid That if any person since the three and twentieth day of October One thousand six hundred fourty one be or hereafter shall be in Rebellion within the said Kingdome of Ireland and be dead or shall die before attaindor or pardon for the same All the Lands Tenements and Hereditaments Estate or Estates Goods or Chattels which such person had or shall have or any other person had or shall have in trust for or to his use the said three and twentieth of October or at any time th ereafter shall be by vertue of this Act forfeited to his Majestie His Heires and Successors and shall be adjudged to be in the actuall seisin and possession of the King His Heires and Successors by vertue of this Act
XVII. All Forfeitures from the 23d Oct. 1641 adjudged to be in the actual Seisin of the Crown.
And further be it Enacted by the Authority aforesaid That all Lands Tenements and Hereditaments whereof any person in the said Kingdome of Ireland was seised the three and twentieth of October one thousand six hundred fourtie one or att any time after shall be seised of any Estate tail or whereof any other person or persons shall be seised in trust for him for any trust of inheritance who shall be attainted of High Treason in his life time or being in actuall Rebellion shall die before he be attainted or pardoned for the same or who shall make enter into or take any such Compact Bond Covenant Oath Promise or Agreement to such [person (fn. 10) ] as aforesaid shall by vertue of this Act be and adjudged to be in the actuall seisin and possession of the King His Heires and Successors
XVIII. Certain Conveyances, &c. made after 1st March 1640 by Rebels; the Uses, &c. to be adjudged in the actual Possession of the Crown.
And be it further Enacted by the Authority aforesaid That if any person or persons whatsoever that at any time hereafter shall be attainted for Treason or shall die in actuall Rebellion before attaindor or pardon of the same or hath or shall take enter into or make any such Compact Bond Covenant Oath Promise or Agreement as aforesaid shall after the first day of March one thousand six hundred and fourtie make or hath made any Conveyance or Assurance whatsoever of any Mannors Lands Tenements or Hereditaments in the Kingdome of Ireland unto or for his owne use or unto or for the use of his wife or any of his children or in trust for himselfe his wife or any of his children That then all the Uses Estates & Trusts so limited other then such as are or shall bona fide be made before his her or theire marriage or made in performance of any Convenant in writing made before marriage unto or for the use of his wife or children shall be forfeited unto His Majestie His Heires and Successors and shall be adjudged to be by vertue of this Act in the actuall possession of the King His Heires and Successors
XIX. The Time for Subscriptions; enlarged.
Subscriptions of £10. and upwards.; Subscriptions of £6. and upwards.
And be it further Enacted by the Authority aforesaid in regard a great part of the time p[re]fixed in the said Propositions for the Subscriptions of the said Underwriters is already elapsed that every one of the Kings Subjects of the Realms of England Scotland or Ireland that shall underwrite within this Kingdome the su[m]m of ten pounds or more for the purpose aforesaid before the first day of May one thousand six hundred fourty two and before the said million of money be underwritten and shall pay in one moiety thereof to the respective Receivers before nominated in this Act at the time of such Subscription and shall pay in the other moiety residue thereof to the said Receivers within six moneths after such Subscription and every one of the Kings Subjects of the Realmes of England Scotland and Ireland that shall underwrite the su[m]m of six pounds or more within the Realm of Ireland for the purpose aforesaid (in one or more Books to be kept for that purpose by the Treasurer of the Army there for the time being) who is authorized and required hereby to keepe such Booke or Books and to enter the names of such Underwriters and the time of such Subscriptions togeather with the su[m]ms subscribed before the first day of July one thousand six hundred fourty two and before the said million of money shall be underwritten and shall at the time of such Subscription pay one moietie of such sum so to be underwritten to the said Treasurer for the time being (who is hereby likewise authorised to receive all such su[m]ms of money and give Receipts for the same under his hand) and shall pay to the said Treasurer the other moietic residue within six moneths after such Subscription every person so underwriting in this Realme or in the Realm of Ireland as aforesaid shall have a proportionable share of the said Rebels Lands and of other Lands to be forfeited by this Act according to the su[m]m to be underwritten and paid in as aforesaid and as if such person had underwritten within the times mentioned in the said Propositions and had paid in his money accordingly
XX. Encouragement for a speedy Plantation.
Cattle may be exported for that Purpose for 2 Years Duty free.; General Saving.
And for the better advancing of a speedie Plantation within that Kingdome which will soone redound to the great increase of his Majesties Customes and Revenues there Be it further enacted by the Authority aforesaid That every person which shall have any part of the said Lands so to be divided and allotted as aforesaid shall and may export out of this Kingdome or Dominion of Wales any Horses Mares Cattell Sheep or other goods for the planting improving and stocking of the said Lands or any part thereof at any time during the space of two yeares to be accounted from such division and allotment to be made (as aforesaid) without paying any Custome Subsidy or Impost for the same Neverthelesse upon sufficient securitie given to the Farmers or Collectors of His Majesties Customes for the time being or to any one of them that the said Horses Mares Cattell Sheepe and goods so to be exported shall be bona fide imployed for the planting improving and stocking of the said Lands or of some part thereof and not to be imployed to any other purpose Saving to all and singular persons bodies Politique and Corporate theire Heires and Successors and the Heires and Successors of every of them (other then the said Rebels theire Aiders Abettors Comforters and Maintainers and other persons whose Lands are or shall be forfeited by this Act and every of them theire and every of theire Heires and Assignes and all and every person or persons clayming by from or under them or any of them or to theire or any of theire use or uses or in trust for them or any of them since the said three and twentieth day of October) all such Right Title Interest Possession Reversion Remainder Offices Annuities Rents and Commons which they or any of them had or ought to have had in to or out of any the said Houses Mannors Castles Lands Tenements Hereditaments or Premisses forfeited by this Act or any of them the three and twentieth day of October in the yeare of our Lord God one thousand six hundred fortie one so as every such person or persons bodies Politique or Corporate whose right or interest is saved by this Act theire Heires or Successors doe make or enter or cause to be entred his or theire claim to any such right title or interest in his Majesties Court of Chancerie in Ireland within twentie dayes after such Proclamation made as aforesaid.
1 a O.
2 Revenue O.
3 interlined on the Roll.
4 three Monethes O.
5 or O.
6 interlined on the Roll.
7 interlined on the Roll.
8 Deodands O.
9 of O.
10 purpose O.
Source: Statutes of the Realm: volume 5: 1628-80 (1819), pp. 168-172.