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While digressing significantly from the principal story line of this account, the sordid story of Nevers’ apparent 1675 rape of his master’s daughter presents some instructive parallels and contrasts. Here’s Nevers’ letter to the Court, in which he confesses to fornication, grovels with some conventional phrases that would fit more convincingly in a preacher’s mouth, and craves “marci,” much as our Mary had done, more romantically, in a somewhat similar document five years earlier.

Michael Bacon’s good buddy Richard Nevers seems to have been something of a kindred spirit. You’ll recall, perhaps, that Nevers joined with (the apparently estimable) John Johnson in going Michael’s bail, after his jailbreak occasioned a hue-and-cry recapture. Subsequently, Nevers stood alone as Bacon’s “surety” in promising child support for “Michael Billerica.”

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