The Bloody Assize

The Tyrant King’s Bloody Revenge

These are the accounts of the Bloody Assize of 1685, presided over by Lord Chief Justice George Jeffreys. The assize was a travelling court of Judges, who over ruled on capital offences beyond the jurisdiction of local magistrates. Due to the nature and scale of the cases to be heard in 1685, the Assize court travelled with two executioners. The Judges should be neutral and offer advise to the defendant and jury. For the Assize of 1685, King James II and Judge Jeffreys had agreed the course of events before Jeffreys left Windsor. Unlike other Assize courts, the King himself selected those to die, those to be sold and those to live. This is the timeline of how 315 men and women are martyred and another 856 are sold into slavery.

When this timeline was started I had no idea that it would last so long or was so poorly covered by other historians. It has been written off as a foot note in the Monmouth Rebellion, yet directly impacts the lives of 1171 men and women across England. I have not been able to research those martyred in Scotland or during the summer Rebellion. So, this is still an incomplete journal of the Bloody Revenge of King James II in the year 1685.

Click here for the list of Towns where Executions took place.

Click here for the lists of those Transported.

Follow the Bloody Trail of Judge Jeffreys’ Western Campaign