206 Paschal Nelson’s Plea for Forgiveness

    [May 1720]

    To the Reverend President and Fellows of Harvard Coll[ege]

    Being conscious of the Abuses and Insults which I offered Mr. Sever about the Election by impudent and unmannerly Language, by denying to obey his commands, and by Saying to him when he punished me for playing in A place prohibited, I would play there again, and for my drinking immoderately, for all which crimes, I desire humbly to ask pardon of God, and of you the Rulers of this Society, professing my hearty Sence of and Sorrow for these my crimes, and promissing by the Divine Assistance I will better observe the Laws of God and of this Society, while I continue in it.

    P. N.

    A true copy

    These crimes were committed by N. a night or two before the Generall Election, in 1720. The President and Fellows ordered that his confession should be read in the Hall publickly and that he should receive an Admonition. And on Mar. the 11 following he was gently admonished in the Hall, his confession not read and his admonition in So generall terms that I beleive but few in the Hall knew what his crime was.

    College Papers, i. 55 (No. 123). For a sketch of Nelson (A.B. 1721) see Sibley, Sketches (Shipton), vi. 504, where the greater part of this document is printed. The comment is by Tutor Sever.