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try, upon which you put yourself for your trial, has found you guilty of the crime with which you stood charged. I am, and every one present, yourself, even, must be satisfied that the verdict is a just one. You stand convicted of the threefold crime of murder, rape, and robbery; and you must die. There is not a ray of hope for you on this side of the grave; your enormous crime has rendered you unfit to continue any longer among your fellowcreatures. I charge you to cherish not for an instant the slightest expectation of mercy; it cannot, it will not be extended to you. The interval between the present moment and your death, an interval which the law has lately mercifully extended, I implore of you to spend in constant prayer to Almighty God for His forgiveness, through repentance and faith in your Saviour Jesus Christ. His mercy you may obtain.

"I do not intend to harrow up your feelings by dwelling upon the details of your crime; they have horrified all who heard them, and you must know it. It is enough for me to discharge the awful duty which the law has imposed upon me-reminding you, unhappy man, once more, that your moments on earth are numbered, and very, very precious to you.

"The sentence of the Court upon you is, that you be taken from the place where you now are, to the prison whence you came; and thence, on some day to be hereafter appointed, to a place of execution, where you shall be hanged by the neck until you be dead; and that your body be buried within the precincts of the prison."

As these last words were uttered, the prisoner, whose face had become ghastly pale, and whose eyes had closed, leaned heavily against the officers who stood behind him, and who led him down, apparently stupified, as soon as the Judge had ceased speaking, out of the dock into the prison. He was executed about three weeks afterwards, and died with firmness and penitence, denying, however, that he had intended to cause, or was at the time aware of the death of his victim. I had never before seen sentence of death passed. It is a most solemn and painful scene. Mr Justice Pattison discharged his trying duty excellently well. His words were few and weighty; and his manner was

characterised by simplicity, firmness, and feeling.

There was, I am sorry to say, a countryman of yours tried some days afterwards for forgery on a grand scale-I mean the notorious Kinnear, whose name has made many a merchant's heart ache.

He came originally, I believe, from Glasgow, where, as well as at different periods of his career in London and Liverpool, he carried on an extensive business, and failed at the last-mentioned place, some seven or eight years ago, to an immense amount, leaving nothing whatever for his duped creditors. He had lived in great luxury and splendour, being a man of very expensive habits and ambitious tastes. Finding it impossible again to establish himself in business,-to obtain credit in an ordinary and open course of dealing, his fertile invention and determined spirit pointed out to him more secret and tortuous courses. He organized a skilful scheme-a compact confederacy (or alliance)! for the purpose of issuing fictitious bills, which soon made their appearance in all directions, especially in Birmingham, Liverpool, and Manchester, and took in even the most knowing. His own name, of course, never appeared; but suspicion was at length roused, and pointed at him; diligent enquiries were set on foot after the alleged parties to these bills-individuals and companies; and the result was that, one fine day in October last, he was seized, together with a portmanteau containing damning evidence of his doings, and committed to prison. One Jones, also, a hoary-headed scamp, his chief confederate, was arrested about the same time.

The Court was crowded with mercantile men. When Kinnear was put to the bar I was much struck with his appearance. One cannot help a transient feeling of sympathy towards a man in the garb, and with the bearing of a gentleman, dragged to the felons' bar, however one may believe him to be a scoundrel. He appeared upwards of fifty years of age; and his countenance bore a very strong resemblance to that of Mr Joseph Hume, the Member for Kilkenny, only that its features were more refined, and betokened intellect. His face and demeanour would have taken in any

one. "Should you have suspected," whispered a friend to me, as we were both scrutinizing the prisoner's countenance," that man to have been a villain ?" "Not I, indeed, nor would any one," I replied, and those lines of Medea's occurred to my mind, in which she laments that we have not equal facilities for detecting base coin and base men.

ὦ Ζεῦ, τί δὴ χρυσοῦ μὲν, ὃς κίβδηλος ᾖ, τεκμήρι' ἀνθρώποισιν ἔπασας σαφῆ ἀνδρῶν δ ̓, ὅτῳ χρὴ τὸν κακὸν ΔΙΕΙΔΕΝΑΙ οὐδεὶς χαρακτὴρ ἐμπέφυκε σώματι ;* His face was a little flushed as he was brought to the front of the dock, to stand where he knew that the murderer Hill had stood a short time before; and though he was evidently making a great effort to appear composed and attentive to what was going forward, and so grievously concerned him, yet the restless anxiety of his eyes, and momentary changes of his colour, showed that he was not insensible to the ignominy of his situation. He, who had lately been among the most active and eminent merchants of Liverpool, now stood charged with felony at the bar of the court, which was crowded, as he saw, by them with whom he had once been on terms of intimacy and equality, nay, superiority of them who felt, as they looked at him, a keen and just resentment towards him for the gross frauds and injuries he had committed upon them, whose only fault had been their too easy confidence in his integrity. While the jury were being sworn, he looked at each of them with a scrutinizing and anxious eye, but to my surprise-challenged none of them. He had a number of papers with him, which he arranged carefully before him while the usual formalities were going on; and it soon appeared that he had retained no counsel, but intend ed to defend himself. Never was there a more signal instance of the folly of such a procedure, of the truth of the saying, that he who is his own counsel has a fool for his client. A layman to conduct his own defence on a prosecution for forgery-one which is usually environed with technical difficulties, such as no one could reasonably be expected to comprehend

or deal with but a lawyer, and an experienced one! Quem Deus vult perdere prius dementat! At length he was called upon, in the usual manner, to plead to the indictment. "Not guilty," said he, firmly and readily, thereby unconsciously waving the preliminary objection to the indictment on which he had been mainly relying! Just before counsel rose to state the case to the jury, Kinnear, in a strong Scottish accent, and with an air of mingled anxiety and confidence, thus addressed the Judge.

"My Lord, I presume the time has now arrived at which I may take an exception to the form of the indictment?"

"The exception to the form of the indictment, do you say?" enquired the Judge.

"Exactly so, my lord."

"No, you are too late! If you considered the indictment defective, why did you plead to it ?" enquired the Judge, mildly. "By so doing you have admitted that you have no ground for objecting to the sufficiency of the form of it. Why did you plead to it? You should have demurred."

Kinnear seemed thunderstruck. "You might have been better advised," continued the Judge, kindly, “ if you had chosen; you should have consulted some one who would have apprised you of the consequences of the step you have taken of the proper time and mode of bringing forward and shaping your defence. Judging from your appearance, you must have had the means of doing so. Surely you have no one to blame but yourself." Kinnear, with earnest pertinacity, - pressed the Judge to entertain, at least to listen to, his "legal objection," and succeeded. "Well let us hear it; if it be really a substantial one, you may hereafter avail yourself of it in arrest of judgment. I have looked at the indictment, and cannot give you much hope. But go on."

"I am charged, my lord," he commenced, with deliberate emphasis, "with forging a bill of exchange; and if I can prove the instrument, as described in the indictment, not to be a bill of exchange, I must be acquitted. Is not that so, my lord ?" The Judge assented. "Now, my Lord, I have

* Medea, 516, 519.

always understood, in my experience as a mercantile man, and it is laid down in all the law-books, that to a bill of exchange three parties are necessarya drawer, a payee, and an acceptor; from which it follows that an acceptance is an essential part of a bill of exchange.'

"If that is your point, there is nothing in it at all; and you must know it yourself, if you are acquainted, as you say, with commercial matters," said the Judge; "hundreds and hundreds of bills are noted and protested daily for non-acceptance; how could that be if they were not bills ?”*

Kinnear, however, could not part with his "point" so easily but urged it again and again with a most provoking pertinacity, till the Judge at once put an end to it by saying, sternly, -even his patience being exhausted "Silence, prisoner! what do you mean by standing chattering there in this way? I have heard you again, and again, and again, repeating the same thing, and have tried till I am tired to satisfy you of its futility. I cannot permit the time of the public to be any longer wasted. Let the case go on; you will have every proper opportunity of defending yourself."

Kinnear, with an air at once dogged and chagrined, gave up the contest; and the counsel for the prosecutor proceeded to state as clear and strong a case against the prisoner as could well be made out. He had gone by several names, under all of which, however, he was most distinctly identified. He was arrested on one of the Manchester trains, the officer, at the same time, seizing, as already intimated, his portmanteau, which bore on it in conspicuous brass letters, "J. K. D." (i. e. John Kinnear Donaldson, the name by which he most frequently went, as was shown beyond all possibility of doubt.) This portmanteau

alas, for him!-contained numerous memoranda in his own handwriting; the stamps with which the printed parts of the bills in question had been effected; correspondence with his various confederates, disclosing a complete organization for swindling and forging; prospectuses of sham banks in his own handwriting. To what do you suppose his most vigorous fire of cross-examination was directed? To the demolition of all that abundant and impregnable evidence by which his portmanteau and its contents were connected with him, as they were, step by step, beyond all doubt, in defiance of all evasion or denial on his part. Never was any thing more hopelessly absurd ; he had clearly no notion of the true mode, especially the true object of crossexamination, either to break down his prosecutor's case, without, at the same time, prematurely disclosing his own; or to make out even by anticipation that which he intended to set up in opposition to it. His questions were all loose and miscellaneous; and yet, in form, they were neat and terse. It was plain that he had no clear notion of his position, no settled purpose in view. He produced no beneficial effect whatever, nor did he, in his speech to the jury, once allude to the matters which he had seemed desirous of extracting. In fact, his own questions had served only to strengthen the evidence against him where it was weak, and supply what was deficient in it. I found that the prisoner confidently calculated on the prosecutor's being unable to show the handwriting of the alleged drawer's name (John Watkins) to be his, the prisoner's; guess his consternation when there came into the box a Frenchman who gave the most direct and decisive evidence against him! a man whom Kinnear believed at that moment to be far away

*"A bill of exchange is a written order for the payment of a certain sum of money, unconditionally." Blackstone's definition is fuller, but to the same effect, pointing more to the origin of a bill of exchange, "an open letter of request, from one man to another, desiring him to pay a sum named therein to a third person, on his account;" either definition excluding the necessity of an acceptance, and consequently disposing of the prisoner's objection. The instrument in question was in this form :— "Three months after date, pay to my order (without acceptance), L.70. "JOHN WATKINS."

"To the Flintshire Banking Company."

In this form (as far as the words in italics are concerned) are all bills drawn by the Bank of Ireland on the Bank of England, So, at least, it was stated in Court, though the prisoner denied it.

in Prussia, and his name even unknown to the prosecutors!

Q. Do you know the handwriting of Mr Kinnear?"

A. "O yea, ver well indid; I ave mosh reason to know it."

Q. How do you know it?" A." How? Ave I not see him write ver many often times ?"

Q. "Have you received letters from him ?"

A. "Ver gret nomber indeed; too many."

Q."Look at that bill of exchange, and say in whose handwriting is the name, John Watkins.''

A." O, yea, it is Mister Kinnear's, there can be no doubt."

Q. Is it his natural and usual hand, or a feigned one ?"

A. "No, no, it is a disguise; Mr Kinnear write two or tree hand when he choose."

Q. "Have you ever seen him write this kind of hand?"

A. "Ver frequent. There can be not any de least doubt that it is Mr Kinnear's handwriting-no, none at all."

Kinnear gave him a withering look, but did not dare to put a question to him.

At length the case for the prosecution closed, and the prisoner was called upon for his defence. Again he started his point about the misdescription of the instrument, as if he expect ed that it would tell with the jury, where it had failed with the Judge. He then proceeded to the body of his defence, such as it was. His chief point now was to make out that the Flintshire Banking Company (shown clearly by the prosecutors to have been a pure piece of fraud and imposture) was being established bonâ fide, and had actually commenced doing business; that the bona fides of a newly established joint-stock bank was not to be judged of by the smallness of its capital at starting, and cited several instances to show the truth of his assertion, that "small beginnings often made large endings." Above all, he should be able to show, beyond all doubt, that the man who had sworn that the name "John Watkins was in his, Kinnear's, handwriting, had sworn falsely that it was written by John Watkins himself, whom he should put into the box to prove it; and then he should, he apprehended, be imme. diately entitled to an acquittal."

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"Indeed, but you are very much mistaken, prisoner," interposed the Judge, to whom Kinnear had looked, as if expecting what he had said to be corroborated from the bench. "You are not to suppose that if you address a bill of exchange to a person or a company that has no real existenceto a sham bank, for instance, which has been set up only for the purpose of giving currency to their fraudulent instruments, and then pass it off into the world that it will avail you, even if a person calling himself John Watkins should come and swear that these words were in his handwriting. I mention this, only because you seemed to appeal to me, and I do not wish to mislead you by my silence. Go on, and call your witnesses."

"Well," replied the baffled swindler, quite chop-fallen, "I will proceed to prove my case. Call John Jones."

Who do you suppose this "John Jones"-his sole witness-was? The confederate already spoken of, who had been put up at the bar with Kinnear that very morning, and who was to be tried immediately after him on a similar charge! Here was a credible witness for you! I could hardly help bursting into laughter when I saw him led out of the prison into the witnessbox in custody of the officer! by his sole testimony to neutralize all that had been already given, and secure his friend's acquittal! Kinnear proceeded to examine him in a novel manner-by putting the speech which he had addressed to the jury into palpable leading questions, which were all, of course, readily answered by the witness just in the manner which Kinnear wished, neither the Judge deigning, nor the counsel for the prosecution thinking it necessary to interpose at all! He got the man to swear that his name was "John Watkins Jones," but that he more frequently dropped the last name, and passed as "John Watkins;" why, he left to conjecture. At length he came to his grand point.

"Now, Mr Jones, take that bill"the one in question-" into your hands, and look at the name of the drawer."

"I have, sir," he replied, holding it in his hand, and looking at the prisoner, waiting for the next question.

"Now, tell us," continued Kinnear, confidently," in whose handwriting are the words, John Watkins?'"

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"IN YOURS, sir," replied the witness as confidently, not knowing the case which Kinnear had been presenting to the jury, but speaking, probably, in accordance with some former story concerted between them; Kinnear also forgetting, obviously-if such were the true state of things-his altered plot! He turned perfectly pale when this most unexpected and confounding answer was given; but, with a presence of mind and readiness worthy of a better cause, calmly continued,

"Now, Mr Jones, when I wrote that, did I, or did I not write it in your presence, and by your direction?" "You did, sir," replied the ready liar.

"By procuration?"
"Yes-by procuration."

"Can you write, Mr Jones?" enquired the Judge, half smiling at the farce that was being carried on by this pair of worthies, and was answered readily in the affirmative.

"Why did you sign by procuration if you could write, and were present?" "I don't know, sir."

He made a most absurd figure under cross-examination; disclosing such a scheme of villany between himself and the prisoner as even, in the absence of all other evidence, must have secured a conviction. The Judge summed up very shortly, and the jury almost immediately found him guilty. He heard the verdict with perfect composure. The Judge proceeded to pass sentence upon him; telling him that, but for the alteration in the law lately effected by the lenient legislature, his life would have been that day forfeited; that such was his the Judge's opinion of the prisoner's guilt, that, had death been then the punishment of forgery, he should certainly have left the prisoner for execution. As it was, he would find the punishment inflicted upon him to be dreadfully severe; which was, that he should be transported beyond the seas for the term of his natural life. Kinnear listened to the sentence with an air of deep anxiety, but with calmness. He deliberately gathered up his papers, which seemed to have been, however ostentatiously arranged, of no manner of use to him; the officer tapped him on the shoulder, motioning him away, and he followed. Many curious stories are told of this most


successful swindler. He once drew and got discounted, when he was in business at Liverpool, a bill for £80,000. It is now framed and glazed as a curiosity I was told by a banker who knew it as a fact, that Kinnear, on the occasion of one of his bankruptcies, audaciously came to a meeting of his creditors in a carriage-and-four; and, on their mildly intimating to him that, under circumstances, a chaise and pair might have sufficed, he replied, with smiling sang-froid," Gentlemen, my time, which is your time, is so very valuable, that I could not think of depriving you of a moment of it!"

He is now on his way to New South Wales, and I hope he may have health to enjoy his pleasant and novel situation and the many gratifying thoughts and recollections it will occasion. When I looked at him he brought to my recollection-not, however, from any personal resemblance the figure of the ill-fated Fauntleroy, as I saw him standing, some dozen years ago,-with a high-bred air, a most strikingly gentlemanly figure and handsome features, which were blanched with agony and terror,—at the bar of the Old Bailey in London, for a similar offence; and for which, as you may recollect, he was shortly afterwards hanged, a most miserable spectacle. I think he must have been already dead when he was brought out upon the scaffold; he was certainly insensible, and obliged to be supported to the very last moment of the brief and frightful preparations.

The last trial of interest that I witnessed in the Crown Court was one which took place on the next day, or the day after. It was that of a man for the murder of his wife. He seemed about thirty-five years old, and was dressed in respectable mourning. He stood at the bar with an air at once of firmness and depression. He was a little under the average height, and his countenance rather prepossessing than otherwise. From the evidence in chief of the first two witnesses it would have appeared clear that he had been guilty of a most barbarous murder.

On their depositions before the coroner a verdict of manslaughter only had been returned; but, in reading them, Mr Justice Pattison had felt it his duty to instruct the Grand Jury to bring in a bill for murder; a step which seemed most amply justified by


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