Nicolas Lawrence, 1753

22nd May 2015

28 May 1753 Nicolas Lawrence, probably Nicolas Laurens [Old Bailey].

Nicholas Lawrence, was about 38 Years of Age, born upon the Island of Guernsey, of poor Parents, who died before he was six Years old, when a Gentleman of that Island took care to get him a good Master, and sent him to Sea as a Cabbin-boy ; since which Time, he says, the general Part of his Life was spent at Sea, and he has been to most of the known Parts of the Globe. Tho' he could never read a Word in a Book, he has been so much Abroad as to be able to speak French, Spanish, Italian, Portuguese, &c. He was a poor ragged Wretch, having scarce a whole Piece in his Coat, Waistcoat, or Breeches; and after Conviction the Man appeared disordered in his Senses; insomuch, that tho' he would sometimes seem attentive when at Prayers, and would say he loved to hear the Word of God, yet there was scarce any such Thing as making him sensible of his miserable State, any farther than as he felt the Pressures of Hunger and Nakedness. This poor unhappy Wretch was very deservedly convicted of the Fact the Indictment was laid against him for; and another might have been proved by the same Evidence. But as he was found guilty of the first, the second was not try'd. He had just Sense enough to own both the Robberies, and said he robbed for Want. He died in a most miserable Condition, and could scarce be said to be in his Senses for some Days before he died. The Coroner sat upon his Body, and granted a Warrant for his Burial.

This was the famous Robber, who, it is generally believed, gave Rise to a certain pompous Advertisement, concerning an imaginary Robbery in the Neighbourhood of Enfield; which, as it is recent in most Peoples Minds, we have no Occasion to particularize.

This might be the Nicolas Laurens who was baptised on 2 June 1718, son of Jean Laurens and Marie Machon.