[Supplication of the commissioners of shires and burghs for exoneration of their carriage in the treaty negotiations]

To the king's most excellent majesty and the honourable estates of parliament, the humble supplication of Sir Patrick Hepburn of Waughton, Sir William Douglas of Cavers, William Drummond of Riccarton, John Smith, bailie of Edinburgh, Master Alexander Wedderburn, town clerk of Dundee and Hugh Kennedy, burgess of Ayr, humbly showing that where we, the said Sir Patrick Hepburn, Sir William Douglas, John Smith and Master Alexander Wedderburn were this last year bygone entrusted with a commission and employed in the treaty of peace begun at Ripon and still did continue under the same burden and charge until the treaty was transferred to London, at which time we your said whole six petitioners were authorised with a commission to proceed in the said negotiation, which we undertook and have undergone until the happy conclusion of the said treaty. After the which, having now returned to this honourable meeting of parliament the whole proceedings and articles of the treaty, we, and every one of us, do in all humility lay down that commission laid upon us at the seat of his majesty and this high court of parliament and do most willingly and humbly submit ourselves, our whole actions and deportment in that great and weighty charge to your examination and consideration, wherein we offer ourselves ready to give an account and make answer to the effect that if we or any of us have been remiss or negligent in the discharge of our duties and obedience to the commandments and instructions given to us, or if we have for fear of any hazard or upon hope of any benefit, preferment or anything else whatsoever done anything contrary to your instructions or prejudicial to the public, we or any of us who has been defective may undergo that censure which the wrongdoers of the country and abusers of such great trust deserve. And if your majesty and this honourable house shall find that we have acquitted ourselves faithfully of that charge and trust was laid upon us then do we all and every one of us most humbly crave (seeing our negotiation is now at an end, and that by God's assistance and blessing the treaty of peace is closed) that as our weak endeavours have been truly and sincerely contributed to the service of this kirk and kingdom, so we may be exonerated and discharged of that weighty burden we have so long lain under, and that our proceedings therein may be approved. And the answer of his majesty and this honourable house humbly we crave.2

  1. NAS, PA6/4, 'September 23 1641'.
  2. Followed by a series of clauses, dated 23, 24 and 25 September, signed by John Elphinstone, lord Balmerino, reporting different readings of this supplication before parliament.