the group entered the lobby, Bellingham stood up and approached
was said as Bellingham produced a pistol from the concealed pocket
of his coat. Now only a few feet from the Prime Minister, he aimed
Perceval staggered forward, grasped his chest and called out, "I
am murdered! I am murdered!" and he fell to the floor.
then followed a stunned silence, as MPs looked down at the Prime
Minister in disbelief. John Bellingham calmly walked back to his
seat and sat down.
Burgess, a solicitor of Curzon Street, Mayfair, was also in the
lobby at that time and saw what happened. He approached Bellingham
and grabbed the weapon, and searching him found a second small pistol
which was primed with ball and powder.
Perceval was carried to the nearby Speaker's drawing room and medical
help was summoned. Dr
William Lynn of Grear George Street, Westminster arrived around
5.30pm and examined the Prime Minister. He described what he found:
His body was partly off the table; his shirt and white
waistcoat were bloody; and on examining the body, I found
a wound of skin about over the fourth rib on the left side
near the breastbone.
wound had the appearance of a large pistol ball having entered.
On examining his pulse, I found he was quite dead.
then passed a probe to ascertain the direction of the ball,
and found it had passed obliquely downwards and inwards in
the direction of the heart.
wound was at least three inches deep, and I have no doubt
that it caused his death.
William Lynn on the death of the
was marched off to the prison room of the House to await the attendance
of police and magistrates.
Bow Street runners, Vickery and Adkins were soon on the scene and
took over the security of the prisoner. The Speaker called for any
MPs who were also magistrates to examine the evidence.
Michael Angelo Taylor, one such magistrate, was located and considering
there was no case to answer, committed Bellingham to Newgate prison
to await trial.
was lead, handcuffed, to a coach which had been brought to Irongates
in Lower Palace Yard. News of the assassination had spread quickly,
and a large crowd greeted Bellingham as he was taken from the commons.
Mr Perceval had not been the most popular of Prime Ministers
opinion in 1812
crowd swarmed around the coach - their intent not as one would imagine,
to do Bellingham harm, but to assist his escape.
Perceval had not been the most popular of Prime Ministers. The
coach doors were in the process of being opened by the crowd when
a party of Life Guards arrived, and forced the crowd back.
piled onto the coach and Bellingham was escorted to Newgate at a
11.00am on Tuesday 12th May, a coroner's court assembled in the
Rose and Crown public house.
court considered the evidence, and deemed that the Prime Minister
had been wilfully murdered.
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