[The Artillery Comp.] The MILITARY GOVERNMENT. [Their first Officers, &c.]457

[The Artillery Comp.] The MILITARY GOVERNMENT. [Their first Officers, &c.]

Of the ARTILLERY COMPANY.

 

BESIDES the forementioned Trained Bands and Auxiliary Men, there is the Artillery Company, which is as a Nursery for Soldiers, and have been so about 80 Years. Their Place, or Field of Exercise, formerly was in the old Artillery Ground, now in Finsbury Fields, adjoyning to the upper Quarters of Moor Fields on the East, and Bun-Hill on the West: It is a large piece of Ground, containing about 10 Acres, inclosed with a high Brick Wall.

Artillery Company.

King Charles II. listed himself into this Company when he was Prince of Wales, about the Year 1636, and so did his Royal Brother James, Duke of York, at the same time: Who, (after the Restauration) took upon him the Command thereof, and owned it as his Company.

Under the Principal Commander, there is Leader, who Exercises this Company every Tuesday Fortnight; and the other Tuesdays the Exercise is performed by the several Members of the Company, who are to Command.

Many of the Nobility of the Land are of this Company, as also the Lord Maior, and most of the Aldermen. And all the Commanders and Commission Officers of the Trained Bands, and Auxiliaries before mentioned, do exercise Arms in this Ground, the whole Company consisting of 600 Men, or thereabouts.

The Government of this Company, and the Principal Members.
1. A Leader.
2. Two Lieutenants.
3. Two Ensigns.
4. Two Serjeants.
5. A Provost Marshal.
6. Three Gentlemen of Arms.

They have a Court Marshal, which consists of a President and Vice-President, a Treasurer, and twenty four Members of the Company.

Upon the second Tuesday in February, at a General Rendezvous every Year, the Officers are Elected.

April 27. 1708. a General Court of the Artillery Company met in the Artillery Garden, to choose a President, Vice-President, Treasurer, and twenty four Assistants, for the Year following; where the Election for the three former fell by a great Majority on Sir William Ashurst for President, Sir Owen Buckingham, Vice-President, and Sir Gilbert Heathcote Treasurer, in the room of Sir John Fleet, Sir Jeffrey Jeffreys, and Lieutenant Colonel Robert Child. And for Assitants, chiefly those in present Commission in the City.

Chief Officers of the Artillery Company, 1708.

J. S.

Of the Original of this Artilery Company, we have this Relation: That Anno 1585. the City having been greatly troubled and charged with continual Musters and Training of Soldiers, certain gallant, active and forward Citizens, having had Experience both at Home and Abroad, voluntarily exercised themselves, and trained up others, for the ready Use of War. So as within two Years there were almost three hundred Merchants, and others of like Quality, very sufficient and skilful to train and teach common Soldiers the Management of their Pieces, Pikes and Halbards, to March, Counter-march and Ring. Which said Merchants, for their own Perfecting in Military Affairs and Discipline, met every Thursday in the Year, practising all usual Points of War, and every Man by turns bare orderly Office, from the Corporal to the Captain. Some of them in the dangerous Year of 1588, had Charge of Men in the great Camp at Tilbury, and were generally called Captains of the Artillery Garden, the Place where they exercised. These took Precedent from the Merchants of Antwerp.

The Original of the Artillery Company.

E. Howes.

But this useful Artillery Exercise became afterwards discontinued for a great while; till the Year 1610. when by means of Philip Hudson, Lieutenant of the said Company, Tho. Laverock, Rob. Hughs, Sam. Arthois, Rob. Greenhurst, and divers other Gentlemen and Citizens of London, this brave Exercise was renewed and set on foot again. These Gentlemen associated in the said Garden, having sufficient Warrant and Toleration granted them by the Lords of King James's Privy Council, to whom they became humble Suitors in the beginning, for prevention of all future Misconstructions of their honest Intent and Actions there. And having duly considered the Necessity of the Knowledge of Arms in so populous a Place, and the Inconveniences that happened to Antwerp, and other their late populous and flourishing Neighbour Cities; principally by reason of their Neglect of that most noble Exercise of Arms, and Martial Discipline, in times of Wealth and Peace. These therefore now undertook, at their own private and particular Charge, a Weekly Exercise of Arms after the modern and best Fashion and Instruction then in Use. And moreover, for their better Ease and Conveniency, they erected a strong and well-furnished Armory in the said Ground, in which were Arms of several sorts, and of such extraordinary Beauty, Fashion and Goodness for Service, as were hardly to be matched elsewhere.

The Artillery Exercise discontinued; and revived.

An Armory here.

Captain Edward Panton was their first Captain, and Nicolas Spering, a Merchant of the City, their first elected Auntient, or Ensign-Bearer. And as those formerly of the Old Artillery Garden did good Service many ways in their own Persons, and in teaching others; so these last were likely to do more particular Service, being Men of more Skill, and their Practice greater.

Their first Officers.

The Company was now grown great, and in good Estimation. And unto the Artillery Garden, at the usual times of their Military Exercise, many Country Gentlemen of all Shires resorted, and diligently observed their Exercises, which they saw were excellent. And being returned home to their own Countries, they practised and used the same with their Trained Bands. Prince Charles came hither sometimes to see them.

Great Resort to their Exercises.

At this time young Scholars, and other Youth, from the Age of 9 or 10, unto 17, of their own Warlike Dispositions, voluntarily chose themselves Captains and Lieutenants out of their own Companies; and with sound of Drum, and other Ensigns spread, marched into the Field, upon Playdays and Holydays; and practised all Points of War which they had seen their Elders teach: having got themselves Pikes and Pieces fit for their handling.]

The Scholars Exercise Arms.

Note, Every County of England hath a Lord Lieutenant, but the City of London is a Lieutenancy of itself, not subject to any Lord Lieutenant, but the Office executed by the Lord Maior, Aldermen, and other principal Members of the City, authorized by a peculiar Commission from the King.]

London a Lieutenancy of itself.

R. B.

ALL this hitherto writ, respecteth for the most part the more modern Estate of LONDON; let me now, for a Conclusion of this Fifth Book, give one more remarkable Prospect of this City as it was in K. Henry VIII' Reign, and before; and that for the sake of such as love to look back upon former Things and Times. And that which makes what I am going to relate more worthy of

London, as it was in the Days of Henry VIII.

J. S.

Obser-