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person; and shall ever be ready to do you, in all things, the best service that I can.
So wishing your lordship much happiness, I rest Your lordship's faithful friend and humble servant,
G. BUCKINGHAM. Madrid, this 29th of May, 1623, st. vet.
TO THE DUKE OF BUCKINGHAM, IN SPAIN. EXCELLENT LORD,
I HUMBLY thank your Grace for your letter of the 29th of May; and that your Grace doth believe, that no man is gladder of the increase of your honour and fortune, than I am; as, on the other part, no man should be more sorry, if it should in the least degree decline, nor more careful, if it should so much as labour. But of the first, I speak as a thing that is: but of the two latter, it is but a case put, which I hope I shall never see. And, to be plain with your Grace, I am not a little comforted to observe, that, although in common sense and experience, a man would have doubted, that some things might have sorted to your prejudice; yet in particulars we find nothing of it. For a man might reasonably have feared, that absence and discontinuance might have lessened his Majesty's favour: no such thing has followed. So likewise, that any, that might not wish you well, should have been bolder with you. But all is continued in good compass. Again, who might not have feared, that your Grace being there to manage, in great part, the most important business of Europe, so far from the king, and not strengthened with advice there, except that of the prince himself, and thus to deal with so politic a state as Spain, you should be able to go through as you do? and yet nothing, as we hear, but for your honour, and that you do your part. Surely, my lord, though your virtues be great, yet these things could not be, but that the blessing of God, which is over the king and the prince, doth likewise descend upon you as a faithful servant; and you are the more to be thankful to God for it.
I humbly thank your Grace, that you make me live in his highness's remembrance, whom I shall ever bear a heart to honour and serve. And I much joy to hear of the great and fair reputation, which at all hands are given him.
For Mr. Matthew, I hope by this time he hath gathered up his crumbs; which importeth much, I assure your Grace, if his cure must be, either by finding better reason on that side the line, or by discovering what is the motion that moveth the wheels, that, if reason do not, we must all pray for his being in good point. But in truth, my lord, I am glad he is there; for I know his virtues, and particularly his devotion to your lordship.
God return his highness and your Grace unto us safe and sound, and according to your heart's desires.
* N. S.
TO MR. TOBIE MATTHEW.
I HAVE received your letter of the 10th of June,* and am exceeding glad to hear you are in so good health. For that, which may concern myself, I neither doubt of your judgment in choosing the fittest time, nor of your affection in taking the first time you shall find it. For the public business, I will not turn my hopes into wishes yet, since you write as you do; and I am very glad you are there, and, as I guess, you went in good time to his lordship.
For your action of the case, it will fall to the ground; for I have not heard from the duke, neither by letter nor message, at this time. God keep you. I rest always
Your most affectionate and faithful servant,
Gray's-Inn, 17th of June, 1623. I do hear from Sir Robert Ker, and others, how much beholden I am to you.
TO MR. TOBIE MATTHEW.
GOOD MR. MATTHEW,
I THANK you for your letter of the 26th of June, and commend myself unto your friendship, knowing your word is good assurance, and thinking I cannot wish myself a better wish, than that your power may grow to your will.
Since you say the prince hath not forgot his co mandment, touching my History of Henry VIII. I may not forget my duty. But I find Sir Robert Cotton, who poured forth what he had, in my other work, somewhat dainty of his materials in this.
It is true, my labours are now most set to have those works, which I had formerly published, as that of "Advancement of Learning," that of " Henry VII." that of the " Essays," being retractate, and made more perfect, well translated into Latin by the help of some good pens, which forsake me not, for these modern languages will, at one time or other, play the bankrupts with books; and since I have lost much time with this age, I would be glad, as God shall give ine leave, to recover it with posterity.
For the essay of friendship, while I took your speech of it for a cursory request, I took my promise for a compliment. But since you call for it, I shall perform it.†
I am much beholden to Mr. Gage for many expressions of his love to me and his company, in itself very acceptable, is the more pleasing to me, because it retaineth the memory of yourself.
This letter of yours, of the 26th, lay not so long by you, but it hath been as speedily answered by me, so as with Sir Francis Cottington I have had no speech since the receipt of it. Your former let
Among his "Essays," published in quarto, and dedicated to the duke of Buckingham, is one upon "Friendship."
ters, which I received from Mr. Griesley, I had answered before, and put my letter into a good hand. For the great business, God conduct it well. Mine own fortune hath taught me expectation.
God keep you.
To Mr. Matthew, into Spain.
TO MR. TOBIE MATTHEW.
GOOD MR. MATTHEW,
I HAVE received your letter sent by my lord of Andover; and, as I acknowledged your care, so I cannot fit it with any thing, that I can think on for myself: for since Gondomar, who was my voluntary friend, is in no credit, neither with the prince, nor with the duke, I do not see what may be done for me there; except that which Gondomar hath lost, you have found; and then I am sure my case is amended; so, as with a great deal of confidence, I commend myself to you, hoping that you will do what in you lieth, to prepare the prince and duke to think of me upon their return. And if you have any relation to the infanta, I doubt not but it shall be also to my use.
God keep you.
TO THE DUKE OF BUCKINGHAM.
THOUGH I have formerly given your Grace thanks for your last letter, yet being much refreshed to hear things go so well, whereby we hope to see you here shortly, your errand done, and the prince within the vail; I could not contain, but congratulate with your lordship, seeing good fortune, that is God's blessing, still follow you. I hope I have still place in your love and favour; which if I have, for other place, it shall not trouble me. I ever rest Your Grace's most obliged and faithful servant. July, 22, 1623.
TO THE DUKE OF BUCKINGHAM.
UPON Mr. Clarke's despatch, in troth I was ill in health, as he might partly perceive. Therefore I wrote to my true friend, and your Grace's devoted servant, Mr. Matthew, to excuse me to your Grace for not writing. Since, I thank God, I am pretty well recovered; for I have lain at two wards, one against my disease, the other against my physicians, who are strange creatures.
My lord, it rejoiceth me much, that I understand from Mr. Matthew, that I live in your Grace's remembrance; and that I shall be the first man, that
you will think on upon your return: which if your Grace perform, I hope God Almighty, who hath hitherto extraordinarily blessed you in this rocky business, will bless you the more for my sake. For I have had extraordinary tokens of his divine favour towards me, both in sickness and in health, prosperity and adversity.
Vouchsafe to present my most humble duty to his highness, whose happy arrival will be a bright morning to all. I ever rest
Your Grace's most obliged and faithful servant,
Gray's-Inn, Aug. 29, 1623.
TO MR. TOBIE MATTHEW.
GOOD MR. MATTHEW,
I HAVE gotten a little health; I praise God for it. I have therefore now written to his Grace, that I formerly, upon Mr. Clarke's despatch, desired you to excuse me for not writing, and taken knowledge, that I have understood from you, that I live in his Grace's remembrance; and that I shall be his first man, that he will have care of upon his return. And although your absence be to me as uncomfortable to my mind, as God may make it helpful to my fortunes; yet it is somewhat supplied by the love,
Your most affectionate and assured friend, &c. freedom, and often visitations of Mr. Gage; so as when I have him, I think I want you not altogether.
Good keep you.
Your most affectionate and much obliged friend, &c,
Minutes of a Letter to the Duke of Buckingham.
THAT I am exceeding glad his Grace is come home with so fair a reputation of a sound protestant, and so constant for the king's honour and errand.
His Grace is now to consider, that his reputation will vanish like a dream, except now, upon his return, he do some remarkable act to fix it, and bind it in.
They have a good wise proverb in the country, whence he cometh, taken I think from a gentlewoman's sampler, "Qui en no da nudo, pierdo punto," "" He that tieth not a knot upon his thread,
loseth his stitch."
Any particular I, that live in darkness, cannot propound. Let his Grace, who seeth clear, make his choice: but let some such thing be done, and then this reputation will stick by him; and his Grace may afterwards be at the better liberty to take and leave off the future occasions, that shall present.
The prince and duke arrived from Spain in London, October 6, 1623.
TO THE KING.
IT MAY PLEASE, YOUR most excellent MAJESTY, I SEND, in all humbleness, to your Majesty, the poor fruits of my leisure. This book was the first thing that ever I presented to your Majesty; † and it may be, will be the last. For I had thought it should have been posthuma proles. But God hath otherwise disposed for a while. It is a translation, but almost enlarged to a new work. I had good helps for the language. I have been also mine own index expurgatorius, that it may read in all places. For since my end of putting it into Latin was to have it read every where, it had been an absurd contradiction to free it in the language, and to pen it up in the matter. Your Majesty will vouchsafe graciously to receive these poor sacrifices of him, that shall ever desire to do you honour while he breathes, and fulfilleth the rest in prayers.
Your Majesty's true beadsman, and most humble servant, &c.
Todos duelos con pan son buenos: itaque det vestra Majestas obolum Belisario.
TO THE PRINCE.
IT MAY PLEASE YOUR EXCELLENT HIGHNESS,
I SEND your highness, in all humbleness, my book of "Advancement of Learning," translated into Latin, but so enlarged as it may go for a new work. It is a book, I think, will live, and be a citizen of the world, as English books are not. For Henry the Eighth, to deal truly with your highness, I did so despair of my health this summer, as I was glad to choose some such work, as I might compass within days; so far was I from entering into a work of length. Your highness's return hath been my restorative. When I shall wait upon your highness, I shall give you a farther account. So I most humbly kiss your highness's hands, resting
Your highness's most devoted servant.
have passed some more visible demonstrations of your power with the king, and your constancy in the way you are in: before not.
There are considerable, in this state, three sorts of men: the party of the papists, which hate you; the party of the protestants, including those they call puritans, whose love is yet but green towards you; and particular great persons, which are most of them reconciled enemies, or discontented friends: and you must think there are a great many that will magnify you, and make use of you for the breaking of the match, or putting the realm into a war, which after will return to their old bias.
For particulars, it is good to carry yourself fair; but neither to trust too far, nor to apply too much, but keep a good distance, and to play your own game, showing yourself to have, as the bee hath, both of the honey and of the sting.
The speech now abroad is, My lord of Buckingham's head is full of thoughts: he hath a great task; either he must break, or the match must break. He was wont to go to the king's ways; but now he goeth cross his way, he will easily lose his way."
There is a point nice to be managed, yea, and tender to be spoken of, which is your carriage between the king and the prince; so that you may lose no manner of ground with the prince, and yet the king may not think himself the more solitary, nor that you adore too much the sun-rising. Though this you may set down, that the way to have the king sure unto you is to keep great with the prince.
Conf. with Buc. December 17, 1623.
You march bravely but methinks you do not draw up your troops. If we
You must beware of these your pardons. make men less in awe, and respect you, chiara fa fico al medico.'
The points of the general advice.
If a war be proceeded in; to treat a strait league with France, under name of a renovation of a match with France. Three secret articles, the liberty of the German nation, whereof there is a fresh precedent of Henry the second of France, that took it into protection prosperously, and to the arrest of the emperor Charles's greatness. 2. The conservation of the liberties of the Low-Countries for the United Provinces, and open trade into the East and West Indies.
The offer of my service to live a summer, as upon mine own delight, at Paris, to settle a fast intelligence between France and us.
I have somewhat of the French: I love birds, as the king doth, and have some childish-mindedness, wherein we shall consent.
Conf. Buc. qu. and old store, January 2, 1623.
One of these days I shall turn my lord Brooke,
THERE is not an honester man in court than and say to you, "O brave Buckingham." Montgomery.* I will commend you to all others, and censure
To have some opportunity by the D.'s means, to you only to yourself. speak with the prince in presence of the duke.
To think, whether it be fit for me to speak with the king, and to seek access before parliament; if then.
To think of Belfast's sending over into Ireland. Those, that find themselves obnoxious to parliament, will do all they can, that those things, which are likest to distaste the king, be first handled.
It is not to be forgotten, that as long as great men were in question, as in my case, all things went sweetly for the king. But the second meeting, when no such thing was, the pack went higher. Weeding time is not yet come. qu. of Car.
To be the author of some counsel to the prince, that tasteth of religion and virtue, lest it be imputed, that he entertains him only in pleasures, like a Pe. Ga.
The things remarkable for your Grace, to fix and bind in the reputation which you have gained, must be either persons, or matters.
The doubt the prince is mollis cera, and formed di ultima impression. Therefore good to have sure persons about him, or at least none dangerous.
For the pardons to proceed, it is a tender business. First, whatsoever useth to be done in parliament is thankless. Then it is not good for his Grace. It will make men bolder with him. “Urina chiara fa fico al medico." Lastly, remove the envy from others, it may beat upon my lord himself, or the king.
Montgomery is an honest man, and a good observer. Can you do nothing with Naunton ?|| Who would think now, that I name Naunton to my lord of Buckingham? But I speak to you point blank : no crooked end, either for myself, or for others' turn. The French treaty, besides alliance, is to have
The battery will be chiefly laid on the prince's three secret articles: the one, the protection of the part, if they find any entry. liberty of Germany, and to avoid from it all forces thence, like to that which was concluded between the princes of Germany and Henry II.,¶ the last king except Henry IV. of value in France; for the race of the Valois were faitneants; and, in the name of Germany, to conclude the Grisons and Valtoline. The second, the conserving the liberties of the LowCountries. The third, the free trade into all parts of both East and West Indies. All these import no invasive hostility, but only the uniting of the states of Europe against the growing ambition of Spain. Neither do any of these touch upon the cause of religion.
I am persuaded, the hinge of the king's affairs, for his safety and greatness, is now in Spain. I would the king had an abler instrument.
Above all, you must look to the safety of Ireland, both because it is most dangerous for this state, for the disease will ever fall to the weakest part; and besides, this early declaration against Spain, which the popish party call abrupt, and is your Grace's work, may be thought to be the danger of Ireland. It were good you called to you Belfast ** and Grandison,†† and ask their opinions, what is best to be done for the safety of Ireland, either by increasing the list of companies, and by contenting those that are in arrear, by paying; or by altering any governor there; or by having companies ready mustered and trained here, towards the coast of Ireland; or by having shipping in readiness, &c. For this gown commission, I like it well; but it is but papershot for defence.
Conf. B. January 2, 1623.
You have now tied a knot, as I wished you; "qui en no da nudo, pierdo punto;" a jolly one, the parliament. Although I could have wished, that before a parliament, some remarkable thing had been done, whereby the world might have taken notice, that you stand the same in grace and power with the king. But there is time enough for that between this and parliament.‡ And besides, the very prevailing for a parliament showeth your power with the king.
* Philip, earl of Montgomery, afterwards of Pembroke.
William, earl of Pembroke.
You march bravely. Do you draw up your troops so well?
Sir Robert Naunton, who had been secretary of state, and was now master of the court of wards.
You bowl well, if you do not horse the bowl a hand too much. You know the fine bowler is knee almost to ground in the delivery of the cast.
Nay, and the king will put a hook in the nostrils of Spain, and lay a foundation of greatness here to his children, in these west parts. The call for me,
it is book-learning. You know the king was wont to do me the honour, as to say of me, "de minimis non curat lex:" if good for any thing, for great volumes, I cannot thread needles so well.
The chamberlain : § for his person, not effectual; but some dependences he hath, which are drawn with him. Besides, he can take no reputation from
This league first arrested the greatness of the emperor, and cloistered him. Note of Lord Bacon.
** Arthur Chichester, baron of Belfast, who had been made lord deputy of Ireland in 1604.
tt Oliver St. John viscount Grandison, made lord deputy of Ireland in August. 1616.
TO THE DUKE OF BUCKINGHAM.
I DESIRE in this, which I now presume to write to your Grace, to be understood, that my bow carrieth not so high, as to aim to advise touching any of the great affairs now on foot, and so to pass it to his Majesty through your hands; though it be true, that my good affection towards his Majesty and the prince and the public is that which will last die in me; and though I think also his Majesty would take it but well, if having been that man I have been, my honest and loyal mind should sometimes feed upon those thoughts. But my level is no farther, but to do the part of a true friend, in advising yourself for your own greatness and safety; although, even in this also, I assure myself I perform a good duty to the public service, unto which I reckon your stand-❘ ing and power to be a firm and sound pillar of support.
First, therefore, my lord, call to mind oft, and consider duly, how infinitely your Grace is bound to God in this one point, which I find to be a most rare piece, and wherein, either of ancient or late times, there are few examples; that is, that you are beloved so dearly, both by the king and the prince. You are not as a Lerma, or an Olivares, and many others the like, who have insinuated themselves into the favours of young princes, during the kings, their fathers, time, against the bent and inclination of the kings: but contrariwise, the king himself hath knit the knot of trust and favour between the prince
and your Grace, wherein you are not so much to take comfort in that you may seem to have two lives in your own greatness, as in this, that hereby you are enabled to be a noble instrument for the service, contentment, and heart's-ease, both of father and For where there is so loving and indulgent a father, and so respective and obedient a son, and a faithful and worthy servant, interested in both their favours upon all occasions, it cannot be but a comfortable house. This point your Grace is principally to acknowledge and cherish.
Next, that, which I should have placed first, save that the laying open of God's benefits is a good preparation to religion and godliness, your Grace is to maintain yourself firm and constant in the way you have begun; which is, in being, and showing yourself to be, a true and sound protestant. This is your soul's health. This is that you owe to God above, for his singular favours; and this is that which hath brought you into the good opinion and good will of the realm in general. So that, as your case differeth, as I said, from the case of other favourites, in that you have both king and prince; so in this, that you have also now the hearts of the best subjects, for I do not love the word people, your case differeth from your own, as it stood before. And because I would have your reputation in this point complete, let me advise you, that the name of Puritans in a papist's mouth do not make you to withdraw your favour from such as are honest and religious men; so that they be not so turbulent and factious spirits, or adverse to the government of the church, though they be traduced by that name. For of this kind is the greatest part of the body of the subjects; and besides, which is not to be forgotten, it is safest for the king and his service, that such men have their dependence upon your Grace, who are entirely the king's, rather than upon any other subject.
For the papists, it is not unknown to your Grace, that you are not, at this time, much in their books. But be you like yourself; and far be it from you, under a king and prince of that clemency, to be inclined to rigour or persecution.
But three things must be looked unto; the first, that they be suppressed in any insolency, which may tend either to disquiet the civil estate, or scandalize our church in fact; for otherwise, all their doctrine doth it in opinion. The second, that there be an end, or limit, of those graces, which shall be thought fit for them, and that there be not every day new demands hearkened to. The third, that for those cases and graces, which they have received, or shall receive, of the state, the thanks go the right way; that is, to the king and prince, and not to any foreigner. For this is certain, that if they acknowledge them from the state, they may perhaps sit down when they are well. But if they have a dependence upon a foreigner, there will be no end of their growing desires and hopes. And in this point also, your lordship's wisdom and moderation may do much good.
For the match with Spain, it is too great and dark a business for me to judge of. But as it hath rela