« PreviousContinue »
heir, and that you are fortunate as well in your house, as in the state of the kingdom. These blessings come from God; as I do not doubt but your Grace doth, with all thankfulness, acknowledge, vowing to him your service. Myself, I praise his Divine Majesty, have gotten some step into health. My wants are great; but yet I want not a desire to to do your Grace service and I marvel, that your Grace should think to pull down the monarchy of Spain without my good help. Your Grace will give me leave to be merry, however the world goeth with me. I ever rest
Your Grace's most faithful and obliged servant, &c.
I wish your Grace a good new year.
The following letters, wanting both date and circumstances to determine such dates, are placed here together.
TO THE LORD TREASURER.†
IT MAY PLEASE YOUR HONOURABLE Lordship,
I ACCOUNT myself much bound to your lordship for your favour showed to Mr. Higgins upon my commendations about Pawlet's wardship; the effect of which your lordship's favour, though it hath been nification remains: and I must in all reason consent intercepted by my lord deputy's suit, yet the sigand acknowledge, that your lordship had as just and I did think it unlikely, that my lord would have good cause to satisfy my lord deputy's request, as
been suitor for so mean a matter.
So this being to none other end but to give your lordship humble thanks for your intended favour, I
move him in the particular petition. Only the pre-commend your lordship to the preservation of the
sent occasion doth invite me to desire, that his Grace
God keep you.
TO SIR HUMPHREY MAY, CHANCELLOR
GOOD MR. CHANCELLOR,
I DID wonder what was become of you, and was very glad to hear you were come to court; which, methinks, as the times go, should miss you as well as I.
I send you another letter, which I wrote to you of an old date, to avoid repetition; and I continue my request then to you, to sound the duke of Buckingham's good affection towards me, before you do
nostre tres-excellente Royne, & m'en faire recevoir quelque gracieuse demonstration. Vostre Excellence prendra aussi, s'il vous plaist, quelque occasion de prescher un peu à mon avantage en l'oreille du Duc de Buckingham en general. Dieu vous ayt en sa | saincte garde.
Vostre tres-affectionné et tres humble serviteur,
January 18, 1625.
TO SIR FRANCIS VERE.‡
I AM to recommend to your favour one Mr. John Ashe, as to serve under you, as agent of your comwhose desire how much I do affect, you may perceive if it be but in this, that myself being no farther interested in you, by acquaintance or deserving, yet have intruded myself into this commendation; which, if it shall take place, I shall by so much the more find cause to take it kindly, by how much I find less cause in myself to take upon me the part of a mover or commender towards you, whom nevertheless I will not so far estrange myself from, but that in a general or mutual respect, incident to persons of our qualities and service, and not without particular inducements of friendship, I might, without breaking decorum, offer to you a request of
TO THE MARQUIS D'EFFIAT, THE FRENCH this nature, the rather honouring you so much for
your virtues, I would gladly take occasion to be beholden to you; yet no more gladly than to have occasion to do you any good office. And so this being to no other end, I commend you to God's goodness.
From my chamber at the
MONS. L'AMBASSADEUR, MON FILS,
Vous scavez que le commencement est la moitié du fait. Voyla pourquoy je vous ay escrit ce petit mot de lettre, vous priant de vous souvenir de vostre noble promesse de me mettre en la bonne grace de Born November 17, 1625, and named Charles. Diary of the From the original draught in the library of Queen's colLife of Archbishop Laud, published by Mr. Wharton, p. 24. lege, Oxford, Arch. D. 2. This son of the duke died the 16th of March, 1626-7. Ibid. p. 40. Ibid.
TO MR. CAWFEILDE.*
I MADE full account to have seen you here this reading, but your neither coming nor sending the interr. as you undertook, I may perceive† of a wonder. And you know super mirari cœperunt philosophari. The redemption of both these consisteth in the vouchsafing of your coming up now, as soon as you conveniently can; for now is the time of conference and counsel. Besides, if the course of the court be held super interrogat. judicis, then must the interr. be ready ere the commission be sealed; and if the commission proceed not forthwith, then will it be caught hold of for farther delay. I will not, by way of admittance, desire you to send with all speed the interr. because I presume much of your coming, which I hold recessary; and accordingly, pro more amicitiæ, I desire you earnestly to have regard both of the matter itself, and my so conceiving. And so, &c.
Your friend particularly.
TO MY LORD MONTJOYE.‡
MY VERY GOOD LORD,
FINDING by my last going to my lodge at Twickenham and tossing over my papers, somewhat that I thought might like you, I had neither leisure to perfect them, nor the patience to expect leisure; so desirous I was to make demonstration of my honour and love towards you, and to increase your good love towards me. And I would not have your lordship conceive, though it be my manner and rule to keep state in contemplative matters, "si quis venerit nomine suo, eum recipietis," that I think so well of the collection as I seem to do: and yet I dare not take too much from it, because I have chosen to dedicate it to you. To be short, it is the honour I can do to you at this time. And so I commend me to your love and honourable friendship.
TO KING JAMES I.
MAY IT PLEASE YOUR MAJESTY,
THINKING often, as I ought, of your Majesty's virtue and fortune, I do observe, not without admiration, that those civil acts of sovereignty which are of the greatest merit, and therefore of truest glory, are by the providence of God manifestly put into your hands as a chosen vessel to receive from God, and an excellent instrument to work amongst men the best and noblest things. The highest degree of sovereign honour is to be founder of a kingdom or estate; for, as in the acts of God, the creation is
From the original draught in the library of Queen's college, Oxford, Arch. D. 2.
+ Query whether perceive.
TO THE KING.
IT MAY PLEASE YOUR MAJESTY,
A FULL heart is like a full pen: it can hardly make any distinguished work. The more I look upon my own weakness, the more I must magnify your favours; and the more I behold your favours, the more I must consider mine own weakness. This is my hope, that God, who hath moved your heart to favour me, will write your service in my heart. Two things I may promise; for, though they be not mine own, yet they are surer than mine own, because they are God's gifts; that is, integrity and industry. And therefore, whensoever I shall make my account to you, I shall do it in these words, ecce tibi lucrifeci, and not ecce mihi lucrifeci. And for industry, I shall take to me, in this procuration, not Martha's part, to be busied in many things, but Mary's part, which is to intend your service; for the less my abilities are, the more they ought to be contracted ad unum. For the present, I humbly pray your Majesty to accept my most humble thanks and vows as the forerunners of your service, which I shall always perform with a faithful heart.
Your Majesty's most obedient servant,
From the original draught in the library of Queen's College, Oxford, Arch. D. 2.
shut against him. Secondly, that the possession of his wife's lease may be restored to her; and this bit of arrear to your Majesty, that you will be pleased to remit it, according to your Majesty's gra
The humble petition of the Lord VERULAM, Viscount cious and pious promise, when you admitted him to
you in the night of his troubles, which was, that you would not meddle with his estate, but to mend it. In the restoring the possession, you shall remove your hand of arms; in the remitting of the rent, you shall extend your hand of grace: and if he be not worthy of so much favour, as to have it released yet, that it may be respited for some good time, that he may make somewhat of that his father left him, and keep himself out of want, in such sort, that your supplicant, that aspireth but to live to study, be not put to study to live. And he, according to his bounden duty, shall not intermit, as he ever hath done, to pray to God for your Majesty's health and happiness.
TO THE KING'S MOST EXCELLENT
THAT whereas your supplicant, for reward of full sixteen years' service in the painfullest places of your kingdom, how acceptable or useful, he appeal- | eth to your Majesty's gracious remembrance, had of your Majesty's gracious bounty two grants, both under the great seal of England; the one a pension of 1200. the other a farm of the petty writs, about 600l. per annum in value, which was long since assigned to your supplicant's wife's friends in trust for her maintenance: which two grants are now the substance of your supplicant's and his wife's means, and the only remains of your Majesty's former favours, except his dignities, which without means are but burdens to his fortunes :
So it is, most gracious sovereign, that both these are now taken from him; the pension stopped, the lease seized: the pension being, at this present, in arrear 5001. and at Michaelmas 800/. is stopped, as he conceiveth, upon the general stop of pensions; though he hopeth assuredly, that your Majesty, that looketh with the gracious eye of a king, and not the strict eye of an officer, will behold his case as especial, if not singular. The latter was first seized for satisfaction of a private gentleman, your supplicant unheard, and without any shadow of a legal course. Since it hath been continued, in respect of a debt to your Majesty for the arrear of rent upon the same farm, amounting to 15007. But whereas your Majesty's farmers debtors for their rents, and other your debtors, have usually favours, sometimes of stallment, sometimes upon equity, if their farms decay, or at least when they are called upon, have days given, put in security, or the like; your supplicant was never so much as sent to, no warnings to provide, no days given, but put out of possession suddenly by a private and peremptory warrant, without any spark of those favours used to the meanest subjects. So that now your supplicant having left little or no annual income, is in great extremity, having spread the remnant of his former fortunes in jewels and plate, and the like, upon his poor creditors, having scarce left bread to himself and family.
In tender consideration whereof, your supplicant, and overthrown servant, doth implore your Majesty's grace and goodness felt by so many, known to all, and whereof he cannot live to despair: first, in general, that your Majesty will not suffer him, upon whose arm your princely arm hath so often been, when you presided in council, so near he was, and who hath borne your image in metal, but more in his heart, utterly to perish; or, which is worse, to live in his last days in an abject and sordid condition. Next, in particular, that your Majesty would be graciously pleased to take present order to have the arrear of his pension paid, and likewise that for the future it may be settled, that he be not at courtesy, nor to beg at that door, which is like enough to be
TO THE MARQUIS OF BUCKINGHAM.
MY VERY GOOD LORD,
I HEAR yesterday was a day of very great honour to his Majesty, which I do congratulate. I hope also his Majesty may reap honour out of my adversity; as he hath done strength out of my prosperity. His Majesty knows best his own ways; and for me to despair of him, were a sin not to be forgiven. I thank God I have overcome the bitterness of this cup by christian resolution; so that worldly matters are but mint and cumin. God ever preserve you.
my Lord Buckingham after my troubles.
TO THE MARQUIS OF BUCKINGHAM.
I THOUGHT it my duty to take knowledge to his Majesty, from your lordship, by the enclosed, that, much to my comfort, I understand his Majesty doth not forget me nor forsake me, but hath a gracious inclination to me, and taketh care of me; and to thank his Majesty for the same. I perceive, by some speech, that passed between your lordship and Mr. Meautys, that some wretched detractor hath told you, that it were strange I should be in debt; for that I could not but have received a hundred thousand pounds gift since I had the seal; which is an abominable falsehood. Such tales as these made St. James say, that the "tongue is a fire," and "itself fired from hell," whither, when these tongues shall return, they will "beg a drop of water to cool them." I praise God for it, I never took penny for any benefice or ecclesiastical living; I never took penny for releasing any thing I stopped at the seal; I never took penny for any commission, or things of that nature; I never shared with any servant for any second or inferior profit. My offences have
myself recorded, wherein I studied, as a good confessant, guiltiness, and not excuse; and therefore I hope it leaves me fair to the king's grace, and will turn many men's hearts to me.
As for my debts, I showed them your lordship, when you saw the little house and the farm, besides a little wood or desert, which you saw not.
If these things were not true, although the joys of the penitent be sometimes more than the joys of the innocent, I could not be as I am.
TO THE MARQUIS OF BUCKINGHAM.
MY VERY GOOD LORD,
THIS extreme winter hath turned, with me, a weakness of body into a state that I cannot call health, but rather sickness, and that more dangerous than felt, as whereby I am not likely to be able to wait upon your lordship, as I desired, your lordship being the person of whom I promise myself more
God bless you, and reward you for your constant almost than of any other; and, again, to whom, in love to me. I rest, &c. all loving affection, I desire no less to approve myself a true friend and servant. My desire to your lordship is to admit this gentleman, my kinsman and approved friend, to explain to you my business,
Draught of a letter to the Marquis of Buckingham whereby to save farther length of letter, or the trouble of your lordship's writing back.
I SAY to myself, that your lordship hath forsaken me; and I think I am one of the last that findeth it, and in nothing more, than that twice at London your lordship would not vouchsafe to see me, though the latter time I begged it of you. If your lordship lack any justification about York-house, good my lord, think of it better; for I assure your lordship, that motion to me was to me as a second sentence; for I conceived it sentenced me to the loss of that, which I thought was saved from the former sentence, which is your love and favour. But sure it could not be that pelting matter, but the being out of sight, out of use, and the ill offices done me, perhaps, by such as have your ear. Thus I think, and thus I speak; for I am far enough from any baseness or detracting, but shall ever love and honour you, howsoever I be
Your forsaken friend and freed servant,
TO THE MARQUIS OF BUCKINGHAM.
It is in vain to cure the accidents of a disease, except the cause be found and removed. I know adversity is apprehensive; but I fear it is too true, that now I have lost honour, power, profit, and liberty, I have, in the end, lost that, which, to me, was more dear than all the rest, which is my friend. A change there is apparent and great; and nothing is more sure, than that nothing hath proceeded from and since my troubles, either towards your lordship or towards the world, which hath made me unworthy of your undeserved favours or undesired promises. Good my lord, deal so nobly with me, as to let me know, whether I stand upright in your favour, that either I may enjoy my wonted comfort, or see my griefs together, that I may the better order them; though, if your lordship should never think more of me, yet your former favours should bind me to be
Your lordship's most obliged and faithful servant, FR. ST. ALBAN. Among lord Bacon's printed letters, is one without a date, in which he complains, as in this, that he, "being
TO MR. TOBIE MATTHEW.
GOOD MR. MATTHEW,
THE event of the business, whereof you write, is, it may be, for the best; for seeing my lord, of himself, beginneth to come about, quorsum as yet? I could not in my heart suffer my lord Digby to go hence without my thanks and acknowledgments. I send my letter open, which I pray seal and deliver. Particulars I would not touch.
Your most affectionate and assured friend,
TO MR. TOBIE MATTHEW.
GOOD MR. MATTHEW,
WHEN you write by pieces, it showeth your continual care; for a flush of memory is not so much; and I shall be always, on my part, ready to watch for you, as you for me.
I will not fail, when I write to the lord marquis, to thank his lordship for the message, and to name the nuntius. And, to tell you plainly, this care, they speak of, concerning my estate, was more than I looked for at this time; and it is that, which pleaseth me best. For my desires reach but to a fat otium. That is truth; and so would I have all men think, except the greatest: for I know patents, absque aliquid inde reddendo, are not so easily granted.
I pray my service to the Spanish ambassador, and present him my humble thanks for his favour. I am much his servant; and ashes may be good for somewhat. I ever rest
Your most affectionate and assured friend,
I have sought for your little book, and cannot find it. I had it one day with me in my coach. But sure it is safe: for I seldom lose books or papers.
twice now in London," the marquis "did not vouchsafe to see him."
TO THE LORD VISCOUNT ST. ALBAN.
MOST HONOURED LORD,
I HAVE received your great and noble token and favour of the 9th of April, and can but return the humblest of my thanks for your lordship's vouchsafing so to visit this poorest and unworthiest of your servants. It doth me good at heart, that, although I be not where I was in place, yet I am in the fortune of your lordship's favour, if I may call that fortune, which I observe to be so unchangeable. pray hard that it may once come in my power to serve you for it; and who can tell, but that, as fortis imaginatio generat casum, so strange desires may do as much? Sure I am that mine are ever waiting on your lordship; and wishing as much happiness as is due to your incomparable virtue, I humbly do your lordship reverence.
POSTSC. The most prodigious wit, that ever knew of my nation, and of this side of the sea, is of your lordship's name, though he be known by an
IT MAY PLEASE YOUR MOST Excellent MAJESTY, ACCORDING to your Majesty's directions signified unto me by Mr. Solicitor, I called the lord chief justice before me on Thursday the 17th of this instant, in the presence of Mr. Attorney and others of your
Your lordship's most obliged and humble learned counsel. I did let him know your Majesty's servant, acceptance of the few animadversions, which, upon review of his own labours, he had sent, though fewer than you expected, and his excuses other than you expected, as namely, in the prince's case, the want of the original in French, as though, if the original had been primogenitus in Latin, then he had not in that committed any error. I told him farther, that because his books were many, and the cases therein, as he saith, 500, your Majesty, out of your gracious favour, was pleased, that his memory should be refreshed; and that he should be put in mind of some passages dispersed in his books, which your Majesty, being made acquainted with, doth as yet distaste, until you hear his explanation and judgment concerning the same. And that out of many
TO THE LORD ARCHBISHOP OF YORK.*
MY VERY GOOD LORD,
I MUST use a better style than mine own, ing, "Amor tuus undequaque se ostendit ex literis tuis proximis," for which I give your Grace many thanks, and so, with more confidence, continue my suit to your lordship for a lease absolute for twenty-some few should be selected, and that at this time one years of the house, being the number of years he should not be pressed with more, and these few which my father and my predecessors fulfilled in it. not to be the special and principal points of the A good fine requires certainty of term: and I am cases, which were judged, but things delivered by well assured, that the charge I have expended, in discourse, and, as it were, by expatiation, which reparations, amounting to 1000 marks at least al- might have been spared and forborne, without preready, is more than hath been laid out by the tenants judice to the judgment in the principal cases. that have been in it since my remembrance, answerable to my particular circumstance, that I was born there, and am like to end my days there. Neither can I hold my hand, but, upon this encouragement, am like to be doing still, which tendeth to the improvement, in great measure, of the inheritance of your see by superlapidations, if I may so call it, instead of dilapidations, wherewith otherwise it might be charged.
Of this sort Mr. Attorney and Mr. Solicitor made choice of five specially, which were read distinctly to the lord chief justice. He heard them with good attention, and took notes thereof in writing, and, lest there might be any mistaking either in the declaring thereof unto him, or in his misconceiving of the same, it was thought good to deliver unto him a true copy. Upon consideration whereof, and upon advised deliberation, he did yesterday in the afternoon return unto me, in the presence of all your learned counsel, a copy of the five points before mentioned, and his answer at large to the same, which I make bold to present herewith to your Majesty, who can best discern and judge both of this little which is done, and what may be expected of the multiplicity of other cases of the like sort, if they shall be brought to farther examination. All that I have done in this hath been by your Majesty's commandment and direction, in presence of all your learned counsel, and by the special assistance and advice of your attorney and solicitor.
From the originals.
And whereas a state for life is a certainty, and not so well seen how it wears, a term of years makes me more depending upon you and your succession.
For the providing of your lordship and your successors a house, it is part of the former covenant, wherein I desired not to be released.
The following Papers, containing Lord Chancellor ELLESMERE'S Exceptions to Sir EDWARD COKE'S Reports, and Sir Edward's Answers, having never been printed, though Mr. STEPHENS, who had copied them from the Originals, designed to have given them to the public, they are subjoined here in justice to the memory of that great lawyer and judge; especially as the offence taken at his Reports by King JAMES, is mentioned above in the Letter of the Lord Chancellor and Sir FRANCIS BACON, of October 16, 1616, to that King.
TO THE KING'S MOST EXCELLENT MAJESTY.†
So assuring myself of your grant and perfecting of this my suit; and assuring your Grace of my earnest desire and continual readiness to deserve well of you and yours chiefly, and likewise of the see in any of the causes or pre-eminences thereof, I commend your Grace to God's goodness, resting, &c.
* Dr. Tobie Matthew.