This latter, indeed, appears to have been concocted by Gerald, an ardent champion of the English cause in Ireland, from genuine letters of Pope Alexander III., still preserved in the Black Book of the Exchequer, which do no more than commend King Henry for reducing the Irish to order and extirpating tantae abominationis spurcitiam, and exhort the Irish bishops and chiefs to be faithful to the king to whom they had sworn allegiance.'
To bolster up the case a fresh packet of five forged letters was concocted (31st August); but the forgery was transparent, and even Sir William Jones, the attorney-general, though a violent upholder of the plot, dared not produce them as evidence.
Claims of enormous aggregate value were thus considered and a large part of those dating from the last years of Mexican dominion (many probably artfully concocted and fraudulently antedated after the commission was at work) were finally rejected.
However, the court party soon after concocted a fresh plot for the duke's destruction; John boldly denounced his traducers, and the quarrel was appeased by the intervention of the king's mother.
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