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ation of abuses; or of the joining of practice with force in the disunion of the rebels. If your lordship doubt to put your sickle into another's harvest, yet consider you have these. advantages: first, time brings it to you in Mr. Secretary's absence: next, vis unita fortior: thirdly, the business being mixed with matters of war, it is fittest for you: and lastly, I know your lordship will carry it with that modesty and respect towards aged dignity, and that good correspondence towards my dear kinsman and your good friend now abroad, as no inconvenience may grow that way.
my conceit to your lordship touching Irish affairs,
For the points of apposing them, I am too much a stranger to the business to deduce them; but in a general topic, methinks the pertinent interrogations must be; either of the possibility and means of accord; or of the nature of the war; or of the reform
Thus have I played the ignorant statesman; which I do to nobody but your lordship; except I do it to the queen sometimes when she trains me on. But your lordship will accept my duty and good meaning, and secure me touching the privateness of that I write.
XLVII. A LETTER OF ADVICE TO THE EARL
MY VERY GOOD LORD,
CONCERNING the advertisements, which your lordship imparted to me, touching the state of Ireland, I hold them to be no more certain to make judgment upon, than a patient's water to a physician : therefore for me upon one water to make a judgment, were indeed like a foolish bold mountebank, or Dr. Birket: yet for willing duty's sake, I will set down to your lordship what opinion sprang in my mind upon that I read.
The letter from the council there, leaning to mistrust and dissuade the treaty, I do not much rely on, for three causes. First, because it is always the grace, and the safety from blame, of such a council, to err in caution: whereunto add, that it may be, they, or some of them, are not without envy towards the person who is used in treating the accord. Next, because the time of this treaty hath no show of dissimulation; for that Tyrone is now in no straits : but he is more like a gamester that will give over because he is a winner, than because he hath no more money in his purse. Lastly, I do not see but those articles, whereupon they ground their suspicion, may as well proceed out of fear, as out of falsehood. For the retaining the dependence of the Vraights, the protracting the admission of a sheriff, the refusing to give his son for an hostage, the holding off from present repair to Dublin, the refusing to go presently to accord, without including Odonnell, and other his associates, may very well come of an apprehension in case he should receive hard measure; and not out of treachery: so as if the great person you write of be faithful, and that you have not heard some present intelligence of present succours from Spain, for the expectation whereof Tyrone would win time, I see no deep cause of distrusting this course of treaty, if the main conditions Rawley's Resuscitatio.
may be good. For her Majesty seemeth to me to be a winner thereby three ways: first, her purse shall have some rest: next, it will divert the foreign designs upon the place: thirdly, though her Majesty be like for a time to govern but precario in the north, and be not, as to a true command, in better state there than before; yet, besides the two respects of ease of charge, and advantage of opinion abroad, before mentioned, she shall have time to use her princely policy in two points to weaken them: the one, by division and the disunion of the heads; the other, by recovering and winning the people from them by justice: which of all other courses is the best. Now for the Athenian question: you discourse well; "Quid igitur agendum est ?" I will shoot my fool's bolt, since you will have it so. The earl of Ormond to be encouraged and comforted. Above all things, the garrisons to be instantly provided for. For opportunity maketh a thief: and if he should mean never so well now, yet such an advantage as the breaking of her Majesty's garrisons might tempt
a true man.
And because he may as well waver upon his own inconstancy as upon occasion, and wanton variableness is never restrained but by fear, I hold it necessary to be menaced with a strong war: not by words, but by musters and preparations of forces here, in case the accord proceed not: but none to be sent over, lest it disturb the treaty, and make him look to be overrun as soon as he hath laid away arms. And, but that your lordship is too easy to pass in such cases from dissimulation to verity, I think if your lordship lent your reputation in this case; that is, to pretend, that if peace go not on, and the queen mean to make, not a defensive war as in times past, but a full re-conquest of those parts of the country, you would accept the charge; I think it would help to settle Tyrone in his seeking accord, and win you a great deal of honour gratis.
And that which most properly concerns this action, if it prove a peace, I think her Majesty shall do well to cure the root of the disease; and to profess, by a commission of peaceable men, chiefly of respect and countenance, reformation of abuses, extortions, and injustices there; and to plant a stronger and surer government than heretofore, for the ease and protection of the subject. For the removing of the sword or government in arms from the earl of Ormond, or the sending of the deputy, which will eclipse it, if peace follow, I think it unseasonable.
Lastly, I hold still my opinion, both for your better information, and the fuller declaration of your care, in meddling in this urgent and meriting service, that your lordship have a set conference with the persons I named in my former letter.
XLVIII. A LETTER OF ADVICE TO MY LORD OF ESSEX, IMMEDIATELY BEFORE HIS GOING INTO IRELAND. 1599.*
hath made me set down these few wandering lines, as one that would say somewhat, and can say nothing, touching your lordship's intended charge for Ireland: which my endeavour I know your lordship will accept graciously and well; whether your lordship take it by the handle of the occasion ministered from yourself, or of the affection from which it proceeds.
Your lordship is designed to a service of great merit and great peril; and as the greatness of the peril must needs include a like proportion of merit; so the greatness of the merit may include no small consequence of peril, if it be not temperately governed. For all immoderate success extinguisheth merit, and stirreth up distaste and envy; the assured forerunners of whole charges of peril. But I am at the last point first, some good spirit leading my pen to presage to your lordship success; wherein, it is true, I am not without my oracles and divinations; none of them superstitious, and yet not all natural. For first, looking into the course of God's providence in things now depending, and calling to consideration, how great things God hath done by her Majesty and for her; I collect he hath disposed of this great defection in Ireland, thereby to give an urgent occasion to the reduction of that whole kingdom; as upon the rebellion of Desmond there ensued the reduction of that whole province.
MY SINGULAR GOOD LORD,
† YOUR late note of my silence in your occasions Rawley's Resuscitatio. + Our author observes, "I was not called or advised with some year and a half before
Next, your lordship goeth against three of the unluckiest vices of all others, disloyalty, ingratitude, and insolency; which three offences, in all examples, have seldom their doom adjourned to the world to
Lastly, he that shall have had the honour to know your lordship inwardly, as I have had, shall find bona exta, whereby he may better ground a divination of good, than upon the dissection of a sacrifice. But that part I leave; for it is fit for others to be confident upon you, and you to be confident upon the cause the goodness and justice whereof is such as can hardly be matched in any example; it being no ambitious war against foreigners, but a recovery of subjects; and that after lenity of conditions often tried; and a recovery of them not only to obedience, but to humanity and policy, from more than Indian barbarism.
There is yet another kind of divination, familiar to matters of state; being that which Demosthenes so often relied upon in his time; when he said, That which for the time past is worst of all, is for the time to come the best: which is, that things go ill, not by accident, but by errors; wherein, if your lordship have been heretofore an awaking censor, yet you must look for no other now, but " Medice, cura teipsum :" and though you shall not be the happy physician that cometh in the declination of the disease; yet you embrace that condition which many noble spirits have accepted for advantage; which is, that you go upon the greater peril of your fortune, and the less of your reputation; and so the honour countervaileth the adventure; of which honour your lordship is in no small possession, when that her Majesty, known to be one of the most his lordship's [namely, the earl of Essex's] going into Ireland," which explains this passage. Apology, p. 435.
judicious princes in discerning of spirits that ever governed, hath made choice of you, merely out of her royal judgment; her affection inclining rather to continue your attendance, into whose hand, and trust, to put the command and conduct of so great forces; the gathering the fruit of so great charge; the execution of so many counsels; the redeeming of the defaults of so many former governors; the clearing of the glory of her so many happy years' reign, only in this part eclipsed. Nay farther, how far forth the peril of that state is interlaced with the peril of England; and therefore how great the honour is, to keep and defend the approaches or avenues of this kingdom, I hear many discourse; and there is a great difference, whether the tortoise gathereth herself within her shell hurt or unhurt.
And if any man be of opinion, that the nature of the enemy doth extenuate the honour of the service, being but a rebel and a savage, I differ from him; for I see the justest triumph that the Romans in their greatness did obtain, and that whereof the emperors in their styles took addition and denomination, were of such an enemy as this; that is, people barbarous, and not reduced to civility, magnifying a kind of lawless liberty, and prodigal of life, hardened in body, fortified in woods and bogs, and placing both justice and felicity in the sharpness of their swords; such were the Germans and ancient Britons, and divers others. Upon which kind of people, whether the victory were a conquest, or a reconquest upon a rebellion or a revolt, it made no difference, that ever I could find, in honour. And therefore it is not the enriching predatory war that hath the pre-eminence in honour, else should it be more honour to bring in a carrack of rich burden, than one of the twelve Spanish apostles. But then this nature of people doth yield a higher point of honour, considered in truth, and substance, than any war can yield which should be achieved against a civil enemy; if the end may be " pacisque imponere morem," to replant and refound the policy of that nation; to which nothing is wanting, but a just and civil government; which design, as it doth descend unto you from your noble father, who lost his life in that action, though he paid tribute to nature, and not to fortune; so I hope your lordship shall be as fatal a captain to this war, as Africanus was to the war of Carthage, after that both his uncle and father had lost their lives in Spain in the same war. Now although it be true, that these things which I write, being but representations unto your lordship of the honour and appearance of the success of the enterprise, be not much to the purpose of any advice; yet it is that which is left to me, being no man of war, and ignorant in the particulars of estate. For a man may, by the eye, set up the white in the midst of the butt, though he be no archer. Therefore I will only add this wish, according to the English phrase, which termeth a well-willing advice, a wish; that your lordship in this whole action, looking forward, would set down this position; That merit is worthier than fame; and looking back hither would remember this text, That obedience is better than sacrifice. For designing to fame and glory may make your lordship in y
the adventure of your person to be valiant as a private soldier, rather than as a general: it may make you in your commandments rather to be gracious than disciplinary: it may make you press action, in respect of the great expectation conceived, rather hastily than seasonably and safely: it may make you seek rather to achieve the war by force, than by intermixture of practice: it may make you, if God shall send prosperous beginnings, rather seek the fruition of that honour, than the perfection of the work in hand. And for the other point, that is, the proceeding, like a good protestant, upon express warrant, and not upon good intention, your lordship in your wisdom knoweth that as it is most fit for you to desire convenient liberty of instructions, so it is no less fit for you to observe the due limits of them; remembering that the exceeding of them may not only procure, in case of adverse accident, a dangerous disavow; but also, in case of prosperous success, be subject to interpretation, as if all were not referred to the right end.
Thus have I presumed to write these few lines to your lordship, in methodo ignorantiæ; which is, when a man speaketh of any subject, not according to the parts of the matter, but according to the model of his own knowledge; and most humbly desire your lordship that the weakness thereof may be supplied in your lordship by a benign acceptation, as it is in me by my best wishing.
XLIX. TO MY LORD OF ESSEX.*
CONCEIVING that your lordship came now up in the person of a good servant to see your sovereign mistress; which kind of compliments are many times "instar magnorum meritorum;" and therefore that it would be hard for me to find you: I have committed to this poor paper the humble salutations of him that is more yours than any man's; and more yours than any man. To these salutations I add a due and joyful gratulation, confessing that your lordship, in your last conference with me before your journey, spake not in vain, God making it good; that you trusted, we should say, "Quis putasset ?" Which, as it is found true in a happy sense, so I wish you do not find another " Quis putasset ?" in the manner of taking this so great a service. But I hope it is as he said, "Nubecula est, cito transibit:" and that your lordship's wisdom, and obsequious circumspection, and patience, will turn all to the best. So referring all to some time that I may attend you, I commit you to God's best preservation.
L. A LETTER TO THE EARL OF ESSEX, IN OFFER OF HIS SERVICE WHEN HE WAS FIRST ENLARGED TO ESSEX-HOUSE.+
No man can expound my doings better than your Rawley's Resuscitatio. + Ibid.
lordship, which makes me need to say the less; only I humbly pray you to believe, that I aspire to the conscience and commendation of "bonus civis," and "bonus vir;" and that though I love some things better, I confess, than I love your lordship, yet I love few persons better; both for gratitude's sake, and for your virtues, which cannot hurt but by accident; of which my good affection it may please your lordship to assure yourself; and of all the true effect and offices I can yield. For as I was ever sorry your lordship should fly with waxen wings, doubting Icarus's fortune, so for the growing up of your own feathers, be they ostrich's or other kind, no man shall be more glad. And this is the axletree whereon I have turned and shall turn. Which having already signified to you by some near mean, having so fit a messenger for mine own letter, I thought good also to redouble by writing. And so I commend you to God's protection.
From Gray's-Inn this *
9th day of July, 1600.
LI. AN ANSWER OF MY LORD OF ESSEX,
I CAN neither expound nor censure your late actions; being ignorant of all of them save one e; and having directed my sight inward only to examine myself. You do pray me to believe, that you only aspire to the conscience and commendation of "bonus civis," and "bonus vir;" and I do faithfully assure you, that while that is your ambition, though your course be active, and mind contemplative, yet we shall both "convenire in eodem tertio;" and "convenire inter nos ipsos." Your profession of affection, and offer of good offices, are welcome to me; for answer to them I will say but this; that you have believed I have been kind to you, and you may believe that I cannot be other, either upon humour or mine own election. I am a stranger to all poetical conceits, or else I should say somewhat of your poetical example. But this I must say, that I never flew with other wings than desire to merit, and confidence in my sovereign's favour; and when one of these wings failed me, I would light no where but at my sovereign's feet, though she suffered me to be bruised with my fall. And till her Majesty, that knows I was never bird of prey, finds it to agree with her will and her service that my wings should be imped again, I have committed myself to the mue. No power but my God's, and my sovereign's, can alter this resolution of Your retired friend,
LII. TO MY LORD OF ESSEX.
I AM glad your lordship hath plunged out of your own business: wherein I must commend your lordship, as Xenophon commended the state of his country, which was this, that having chosen the worst form of government of all others, they governed the best in that kind. "Hoc pace et venia tua," according to my charter. Now, as your lordship is my witness that I would not trouble you whilst your own cause was in hand, though that I know, that the farther from the term, the better the time was to deal for me, so that being concluded, I presume I shall be one of your next cares. And having communicated with my brother of some course, either to perfect the first, or to make me some other way; or rather, by seeming to make me some other way to perfect the first; wherewith he agreed to acquaint your lordship; I am desirous, for mine own better satisfaction, to speak with your lordship myself: which I had rather were somewhere else than at court; and as soon as your lordship will assign me to wait on you. And so in, &c.
LIII. TO MY LORD OF ESSEX.§
IT MAY PLEASE YOUR LORDSHIP,
THAT your lordship is in statu quo prius, no man taketh greater gladness than I do; the rather, because I assure myself that of your eclipses, as this hath been the longest, it shall be the least; as the comical poet saith "Neque illam tu satis noveras, neque te illa; hocque fit, ubi non vere vivitur." || For if I may be so bold as to say what I think, I believe neither your lordship looked to have found her Majesty in all points as you have done, neither her Majesty per case looked to have found your lordship as she hath done. And therefore I hope upon this experience may grow more perfect knowledge, and upon knowledge more true consent; which I, for my part, do infinitely wish, as accounting these accidents to be like the fish remora; which though it be not great, yet hath it a hidden property to hinder the sailing of the ship. And therefore, as bearing unto your lordship, after her Majesty, of all public persons, the second duty, I could not but signify unto you my affectionate gratulation. And so I commend your good lordship to the best preservation of the Divine Majesty. From Gray's-Inn.
LIV. TO SIR ROBERT CECIL.T
IT MAY PLEASE YOUR GOOD HONOUR,
I AM apt enough to contemn mendacia fame, yet it is with this distinction, as fame walks among inferiors, and not as it hath entrance into some ears. § Ibid. Terent. Heaut. 1. 1. Rawley's Resuscitatio.
And yet nevertheless, in that kind also I intend to avoid a suspicious silence, but not to make any base apology. It is blown about the town, that I should give opinion touching my lord of Essex's cause; first, that it was a præmunire; and now last, that it reached to high treason; and this opinion should be given in opposition to the opinion of the lord chief justice, and of Mr. Attorney-General. Sir, I thank God, whatsoever opinion my head serveth me to deliver to her Majesty, being asked, my heart serveth me to maintain, the same honest duty directing me and assisting me. But the utter untruth of this report God and the queen can witness; and the improbability of it, every man that hath wit, more or less, can conceive. The root of this I discern to be not so much a light and humourous envy at my accesses to her Majesty, which of her Majesty's grace being begun in my first years, I would be sorry she should estrange in my last years; for so I account them, reckoning by health not by age; as a deep malice to your honourable self; upon whom, by me, through nearness, they think to make some aspersion. But as I know no remedy against libels and lies; so I hope it shall make no manner of disseverance of your honourable good conceits and affection towards me; which is the thing I confess to fear. For as for any violence to be offered to me, wherewith my friends tell me, to no small terror, that I am threatened, I thank God I have the privy coat of a good conscience; and have a good while since put off any fearful care of life, or the accidents of life. So desiring to be preserved in your good opinion, I remain.
This last letter seems to be wrote 1600, in the interval between the return of the earl of Essex from Ireland, and his hearing before the lord chancellor, &c.
LV. TO MY LORD HENRY HOWARD.*
THERE be very few besides yourself, to whom I would perform this respect. For I contemn mendacia fame, as it walks among inferiors; though I neglect it not, as it may have entrance into some ears. For your lordship's love, rooted upon good opinion, I esteem it highly, because I have tasted the fruits of it; and we both have tasted of the best waters, in my account, to knit minds together. There is shaped a tale in London's forge, that beateth apace at this time, that I should deliver opinion to the queen in my lord of Essex's cause: first, that it was a præmunire; and now last, that it was high treason; and this opinion to be in opposition and encounter of the lord chief justice's opinion and the attorney-general's. My lord, I thank God, my wit serveth me not to deliver any opinion to the queen, which my stomach serveth me not to maintain; one and the same conscience of duty guiding me and fortifying me. But the untruth of this fable God and my sovereign can witness, and there I leave it; Rawley's Resuscitatio.
knowing no more remedy against lies, than others do against libels. The root, no question of it, is partly some light-headed envy at my accesses to her Majesty; which being begun and continued since my childhood, as long as her Majesty shall think me worthy of them, I scorn those that shall think the contrary: and another reason is the aspersion of this tale, and the envy thereof, upon some greater man, in regard of my nearness. And therefore, my lord, I pray you answer for me, to any person that you think worthy your own reply, and my defence. For my lord of Essex, I am not servile to him, having regard to my superior's duty. I have been much bound unto him. And on the other side, I have spent more time and more thoughts about his well doing, than ever I did about mine own. I pray God, you his friends, amongst you, be in the right. "Nulla remedia tam faciunt dolorem, quam quæ sunt salutaria." For my part, I have deserved better, than to have my name objected to envy, or my life to a ruffian's violence. But I have the privy coat of a good conscience. I am sure these courses and bruits hurt my lord more than all. So having written to your lordship, I desire exceedingly to be preferred in your good opinion and love: and so leave you to God's goodness. 3 December 1599.
LVI. TWO LETTERS, FRAMED, THE ONE AS FROM MR. ANTHONY BACON, TO THE EARL OF ESSEX; THE OTHER, AS THE EARL'S ANSWER THEREUNTO:+
Both written by Mr. Francis Bacon, at the instance of Mr Anthony Bacon his brother, and to be showed to the queen, upon some fit occasion; as a mean to work her Majesty to receive the earl again to favour and attendance at court. They were devised whilst my lord remained prisoner in his own house. See Sir Francis Bacon's Apology to the earl of Devonshire.
MY SINGULAR GOOD LORD,
THIS standing at a stay in your lordship's fortunes doth make me, in my love towards your lordship, jealous lest you do somewhat, or omit somewhat, that amounteth to a new error. For I suppose that of all former matters there is a full expiation; wherein, for any thing that your lordship doth, I for my part, who am remote, cannot cast nor devise wherein any error should be, except in one point, which I dare not censure nor dissuade; which is, that as the prophet saith, in this affliction you look up "ad manum percutientem," and so make your peace with God. And yet I have heard it noted, that my lord of Leicester, who could never get to be taken for a saint, nevertheless in the queen's disfavour waxed seeming religious: which may be thought by some, and used by others, as a case resembling yours, if men do not see, or will not see the difference between your two dispositions. But to be plain with your lordship, my fear rather is, because I hear how some of your good and wise friends, not unpractised in the court, and supposing them