[1] The Quakers, originally called “Friends of Truth” (John 15:15) were also known as the Religious Society of Friends. Blaugdone consistently uses the word “Friends” to address the Quaker community.


[2] Shoreditch was the site of the first Elizabethan theatre. It was located just outside the official city limits of London, and was therefore not under its jurisdiction, which allowed for a more relaxed censorship.


[3] Audland and Camm were a semi-famous and well-connected pair of Quaker preachers from northern England. They jointly published The Memory of the Righteous Revives in 1689.


[4] Conversion to Quakerism arose in individuals through the shared internal experience of the Light of Christ.


[5] Steeple-house is a pejorative Quaker term for a Catholic or Protestant church. Quakers believed that true religious experience comes from within and that ornate religious art was idolatry.


[6] The cross Jesus was crucified on.  Also a particularly cruel method used by the ancients to put criminals to death by nailing them to a wooden cross by their extremities.


[7] Re: 2:10 By staying faithful to God after a trial of ten days by the devil, one will be awarded the Crown of Life.


[8] Ex. 17:16 God commands the people of Israel, Led by Moses, to go to war and defeat the Amalekites.


[9] George Bishop was a Quaker in the 17th century who wrote several works on Quaker doctrines.


[10] Marlborough is a city in Buckinghamshire County; developed along a stagecoach path from London to Bath.


[11] Service: labors served to God.


[12] Devonshire (today’s Devon) is county that forms southwest peninsula of England. It is bounded on the west by Cornwall and on the East by Dorset and Somerset.


[13] Bastable (Barnstaple) is a city in Devonshire county; approximately 110 miles southwest of Marlborough; administrative, commercial and agricultural center for North Devonshire.


[14] Bediford (Bedford) is a city in Devonshire county; approximately 8 miles southwest of Barnstable; principal port for North Devonshire.


[15] The Earl of Bathes (Bath) was Sir John Granville (1628 – 1701); fought in English civil war on side of Monarchy; supporter of Restoration; appointed Earl of Bath on April 20th, 1661.


[16] In Vanity: in vain; unprofitably, without success.


[17] The Countess was Jane Wyche, Wife of the Earl of Bath (before 1637 – 1691/2).


[18]Great-Torrington, generally abbreviated to Torrington, is a small market town in the northern region of the county of Devon.  The town, situated on top of a cliff, overlooks the River Torridge.


[19] Vagrancy was a trend which worried late medieval and early modern society.  Early punishments for vagrancy consisted of enslavement, banishment, and even death after a third offense.  After the establishment of the Poor Laws in 1601 which remained in effect until 1834, men who were found to be vagrant could be banished, or most commonly branded with a V, which if continually caught could result in harsher punishments. Women, in contrast, were generally whipped.


[20] This accusation can be read as a reference to the Lord’s Day Act of 1657 which penalized any one who disrupted the course of a service.  While many Quaker ministers chose to speak after the service was over, thus not interfering with the service, many were imprisoned simply for open contempt for ministers and magistrates.


[21] Mittimus: a warrant of commitment to prison.


[22] Exeter is an administrative center in the county of Devon, on the River Exe, about 10 miles above the river’s entry into the English Channel.


[23] Assizes: court sessions held periodically in each county of England, for the purpose of administering civil and criminal justice, by judges acting under certain commissions.


[24] Gypsies appeared in England about the beginning of the 16th century and were believed to have come from Egypt.  They were usually held in suspicion due to their nomadic lifestyle and habits.


[25] A beadle was a legal officer, sometimes referred to as an under-bailiff, and was in charge of executing the mandates of the authority (such as the sheriff or mayor).


[26] Exeter Prison.


[27] Topsom (Topsham) is 3.9 miles southeast of Exeter.


[28] Bristoll (Bristol), 66 miles north of Topsham is the site of “The Friars,” a Quaker meeting house built in 1670.  Quakers have been active in Bristol since 1654, when John Camm and John Audland came to Bristol.


[29] Long Downs (Downs), an area of chalky treeless uplands in southeast England, used mostly for pasturage.


[30] I.e., ‘towards me’, God was sending his protection and guardianship over her.


[31] Bridgewater, 30 miles southwest of Bristol.


[32] Fain: glad, well-pleased.


[33] A reference to the story of Jesus’ birth in a manger with animals.  Joseph and Mary were traveling in Bethlehem, and Mary “brought forth her firstborn son, and wrapped him in swaddling clothes, and laid him in a manger; because there was no room for them in the inn:” (Luke 2:7).


[34] Bediford (Bedford) is 124 miles northeast of Bridgewater.


[35] I was made to kneel down and pray for him: Blaugdone was commanded by God to pray for the Mayor and, being a stout Quaker, obeyed.


[36] Basingstoke is 68 miles south of Bedford.


[37] Viz: Namely.


[38] Thomas Robertson and Ambrose Rigg: Quaker preachers who traveled together throughout the southern countries; Rigg was imprisoned at least five times, a few of those in the company of Thomas Robertson and is believed to have lived from 1635 to 1705.


[39] First Day: Sunday. The use of this term roots from the desire to abandon titles created on the premise of a false God.


[40] Cork (Cork) is a major city and port along the southern coast of Ireland.


[41] Dublin: a major city and port along the eastern coast of Ireland.  The ship must have gone anywhere from 80 to 120 miles off course.


[42] Sea-men said . . . over-board: Similar to the Biblical story of Jonah.  Jonah 1:7-15.


[43] Going.


[44] Howgill and Burrough were well know Friends who led the Quaker missions in Southern Ireland. They began their mission to Ireland in August 1655 and were banished from the country in late February 1656, just as Blaugdone was arriving.


[45] The Deputy: Henry Cromwell (1628-1674, fourth son of Oliver Cromwell) was commander of the Irish army at the time, a position titled Lord Deputy. He was subordinate to Ireland’s lord-deputy Charles Fleetwood but acted as lord-deputy in Fleetwood’s absence.  Cromwell officially became lord-deputy in 1657, roughly two years after the event Blaugdone details.


[46] The Nation of Ireland.  Possible allusion to the changed dynamic of power within the nation caused by the constant civil warring, which had recently placed Protestants in positions of authority.


[47] With-drawing Room (drawing room): a room where visitors are normally received and greeted.


[48] They all stood bare-headed: While this is seen in many circles as a sign of respect, Quakers did not remove their hats to anyone, as it was a sign of acknowledging someone other than God as one’s master. Blaugdone’s non-Quaker contemporaries, in turn, saw this image as a metaphor that when one takes off one’s hat, one is uncovered by the spirit of the Lord. She may have meant this reference to be a sign of the sinful nature of attempted deceit. 


[49] A Priest: most likely Cromwell’s Independent minister, Mr. Harrison.


[50] Gamaliel: a celebrated doctor of Law in the New Testament (Acts v.34). He advised that St. Peter and the Apostles not be put to death despite their continued preaching after a ban was put into place. Despite disagreements with his stance, his word was taken and they were saved.


[51] The radical religious and social reformations the Quakers offered scared many people in England and Ireland alike.  As a result, Cromwell ordered his army to begin arresting and banishing Quakers from the country.


[52] Thomas Harrison (1619 – 1682), a priest for the Church of England and longtime friend of the Cromwell family.  He preached against Puritans in America and was a Non-Conformist in England.


[53] Sympathetic to Friends, Captain Rich also previously lodged Howgill and Burroughs, in addition to letting the Friends hold meetings at his house.


[54] Bowls (lawn bowls), a popular game in Great Britain at the time; consisted of rolling ‘bowls’ or balls in order to reach a target ball, also called the “Jack.”


[55] Cork is approximately 160 miles southwest of Dublin.


[56] Words spoken by Jesus to the people of Nazareth, the town where he grew up. They refused to believe in his teaching because they considered him one of themselves and therefore without authority to preach to them. The expression is now used of anyone whose talents and accomplishments are highly regarded by everyone except those at home.


[57] Dungarvan is a town and harbor on the south coast of Ireland in the province of Munster. The town's Irish name means "Garbhan's fort", referring to the Saint Garbhan who founded a church there in the seventh century.


[58] Foundered (floundered): struggled violently and clumsily; plunged, rolled and tumbled about in or as in mire.


[59] There was no law that prohibited the Judge from speaking to Blaugdone, but many people of the time were terrified by the Quakers.  It is possible the Judge could not stand to speak to Blaugdone himself.


[60] Tradition was to leave inheritance (land) to the eldest son if there was more than one child over the age of twenty-one.  This land would then not be able to be claimed by another child until the original heir was dead having left no children behind.


[61] Smote: knocked.


[62] Gaoler: jailer, jail-keeper.


[63] “Have nothing to do with a false charge and do not put an innocent or honest person to death, for I will not acquit the guilty” (Exodus 23:7).


[64] Presumably the aforementioned Judge Pepes.


[65] Liberty: release from captivity.


[66] Used by the Quakers instead of the word ‘church’ on the grounds they thought that word ought not be applied to a building but rather the people who practice a religion.


[67] Cleared my self of him: freed myself from charge, or blame; Blaugdone is suggesting that she cleared her conscience by calling on the Judge to confess, so she would not be held accountable by God for failing to save his soul.


[68] Limrick: Limerick, Ireland.


[69] Mineyard: It is unclear where Blaugdone is referring to. It is most likely a mining port city in either Ireland or southwestern England.


[70] Piracy surged in the latter half of the 17th century as privateers found it harder to earn an honest living after the end of Britain’s war with Spain.