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king to forerun his coming, be it never so speedy,
THE WISE PROCEEDINGS OF KING JAMES
The use of this may be in two sorts: first, properly, LXXII. TO MR. TOBIE MATTHEW,§ SIGNIFYING
I WAS heartily glad to hear that you have passed so great a part of your journey ¶ in so good health. My aim was right in my address of letters to those persons in the court of Scotland, who are likeliest to be used for the affairs of England; but the pace they held was too swift, for the men were come away before my letters could reach them. With the first I have renewed acquaintance, and it was like a bill of revivor, by way of cross suits; for he was as ready to have begun with me. The second did this day arrive, and took acquaintance with me instantly in the council-chamber, and was willing to entertain me with farther demonstrations of confidence, than I was willing at that time to admit. But I have had no serious speech with him, nor do I yet know whether any of the doubles of my letter have been delivered to the king. It may perhaps have proved your luck to be the first. Things are here in good quiet.
The king acts excellently well; for he puts in clauses of reservation to every proviso. He saith, he would be sorry to have just cause to remove any. He saith, he will displace none who hath served the queen and state sincerely, &c. The truth is, here be two extremes; some few would have no change, no not reformation; some many would have much change, even with perturbation. God, I hope, will direct this wise king to hold a mean between reputation enough and no terrors.** In my particular I have many comforts and assurances; but in my own opidom in the year 1607. He continued roving from one country and prince's court to another till 1617, when applying himself with much earnestness to the earl of Buckingham, he obtained a permission to come into England, which he did in July that year, presenting himself in the first place to Sir Francis Bacon, then lord keeper of the great seal. But the king being afterwards displeased with him, did, notwithstanding his moving and pressing letters, command him again to depart in October, 1618. Yet in 1622, he was recalled to assist in the business of the Spanish match then in agitation, and knighted the year following. He is represented as a man of very good parts and literature, but of an active and restless temper. What opinion Sir Francis Bacon had of him when young, appears before in his letter to Sir Thomas Chaloner; and what esteem he had for Sir Francis may be seen in the preface to his collection of letters: at the beginning of which is printed his character of the lady Carlisle, whom I have mentioned No. LXX. He died at Gaunt in Flanders in 1655. Stephens. Sir Tobie Matthew's Collection of Letters, p. 18.
Viz. Into Scotland to meet the king. See No. LXIV.
LXXI. TO THE EARL OF SOUTHAMPTON,†
IT MAY PLEASE YOUR LORDSHIP,
I WOULD have been very glad to have presented my humble service to your lordship by my attendance, if I could have foreseen that it should not have been unpleasing unto you. And therefore, because I would be sure to commit no error, I chose to write; assuring your lordship, how little soever it may seem credible to you at first, yet it is as true as a thing that God knoweth; that this great change hath wrought in me no other change towards your lordship than this, that I may safely be that to you now, which I was truly before. And so craving no other pardon, than for troubling you
Instead of this declaration, Sir Francis Bacon tells us, that" at this time there came forth in print the king's book containing matter of instruction to the prince his son, touching the office of a king; which falling into every man's hand, filled the whole realm as with a good perfume or incense before the king's coming in; and far exceeded any formal or curious edict or declaration, which could have been devised of that nature, wherewith princes in the beginning of their reigns do use to grace themselves, or at least express themselves gracious in the eyes of their people." P. 797.
Henry Wriothesley earl of Southampton having been inlved in the guilt of the unfortunate earl of Essex, was condemned for the same crimes; but that earl, who seemed careless of his own life, interceded for the life of his friend, as did Southampton's own modest behaviour at his trial: from which time he suffered imprisonment in the Tower till the 10th of April, 1603. He was afterwards restored in blood, made knight of the garter, and one of his Majesty's privy council. Stephens.
Mr. Matthew was son to Dr. Toby Matthew, bishop of Durham, afterwards archbishop of York; an eminent divine, ensidered either in the schools, the pulpit, or the episcopal He was born in Oxford in 1578, whilst his father was Gean of Christ's-Church; but was, to the great grief of his parents, a few years after the king's accession, reconciled to the church of Rome, through the means, as is said, of Parsons the Jesuit; and became so industrious an agent for her, that his refusal of the oath of allegiance established by act of parlament, together with some imprudent carriage, gave the king such offence, that he was in a manner exiled the king
with my letter, I do not now begin to be, but con-
Your lordship's humble and much devoted
**Upon this occasion it may not be amiss to remember what cardinal d'Ossat writ from Rome to M. de Villeroy upon the accession of king James to the crown of England, part of which I wish no prince would ever forget.
"C'est l'ordinaire des hommes de regarder plus au soleil orient qu'à l'occident, & des Princes bien avisez qui sont appellez à un nouvel estat, d'y entrer doucement, sans irriter ni mécontenter personne ni dedans ni dehors. Si ce Prince continue guidé par la vertu & accompagné de bonheur, comme jusques icy, il sera très-grand, & fera bon l'avoir pour amy;
nion the chief is, that the canvassing world is gone, and the deserving world is come. And withal I find myself as one awaked out of sleep; which I have not been this long time, nor could, I think, have been now without such a great noise as this, which yet is in aura leni. I have written this to you in haste, my end being no more than to write, and thereby to make you know that I will ever continue the same, and still be sure to wish you as heartily well as to myself. 1603.
IT MAY PLEASE YOUR GOOD LORDSHIP,
I WOULD not have lost this journey, and yet I have not that I went for; for I have had no private conference to purpose with the king; no more hath almost any other English: for the speech his Majesty admitteth with some noblemen, is rather matter of grace, than matter of business. With the attorney he spake, urged by the treasurer of Scotland,
but no more than needs must. After I had received
his Majesty's first welcome, and was promised private access; yet not knowing what matter of service your lordship's letter carried, for I saw it not, and well knowing that primeness in advertisement is much; I chose rather to deliver it to Sir Thomas Erskine, than to cool it in my own hands, upon expectation of access. Your lordship shall find a prince the farthest from vain glory that may be; and rather like a prince of the ancient form, than of the latter time. His speech is swift and cursory, and in the full dialect of his country; and in speech of business, short; in speech of discourse, large. He affecteth popularity by gracing such as he hath heard to be popular, and not by any fashions of his own: he is thought somewhat general in his favours; and his virtue of access is rather, because he is much abroad and in press, than that he giveth easy audience. He hasteneth to a mixture of both kingdoms and occasions, faster perhaps than policy will well bear. I told your lordship once before, that, methought, his Majesty rather asked counsel of the time past, than of the time to come: but it is yet early to ground any settled opinion. For the particulars, I refer to conference, having in these generals gone farther in so tender an argument than I would have done, were not the bearer hereof so assured. So I continue, &c. 1603.
LXXIV. A LETTER TO MR. MURRAY,† OF THE KING'S BED-CHAMBER.
& nous, qui depuis quelques années en ça n'avions eu l'œil quasi qu'en un lieu, faudra que l'ayons cy-après en deux; comme faudra bien aussi que fassent encore d'autres. Et en fin de compte, Celui de tous qui regnera le mieux & le plus justement à l'honneur & gloire de Dieu, & au soulagement, profit & felicité de ses sujets; sera le plus asseuré, le plus fort, & le plus aimé, loué & beni de Dieu & des hommes; en quoy consiste la vraye & perdurable grandeur & puissance des Roys, & l'asseurance de leur posterité." Stephens.
It is very true, that his Majesty, most graciously at my humble request, knighted the last Sunday my brother-in-law, a towardly young gentleman;‡ for which favour I think myself more bound to his Majesty, than for the benefit of ten knights: and to tell you truly, my meaning was not, that the suit of this other gentleman, Mr. Temple,§ should have been moved in my name. For I should have been un
LXXIII. TO THE EARL OF NORTHUMBER- willing to have moved his Majesty for more than
one at once, though many times in his Majesty's an courts of justice, if we move once for our friends, we are allowed to move again for our fee.
But indeed my purpose was, that you might have t been pleased to have moved it as for myself.
Nevertheless, since it is so far gone, and that the gentleman's friends are in some expectation of success, I leave it to your kind regard what is farther to be done, as willing to give satisfaction to those which have put me in trust, and loth on the other side to press above good manners. And so with my
loving commendation I remain
LXXV. TO MR. PIERCE, SECRETARY TO THE LORD DEPUTY OF IRELAND.||
To this Sir John Constable, Sir Francis Bacon dedicated the second edition of his "Essays;" published at London in 1613, in octavo.
§ Probably Mr. William Temple, who had been educated in King's College, Cambridge, then master of the free-school at Lincoln, next successively secretary to Sir Philip Sidney, secretary Davison, and the earl of Essex, made provost of Dublin College in 1609, and at last knighted, and appointed one of the masters in chancery in Ireland. He died about 1626, at the age of 72.
I AM glad to hear of you, as I do; and for my part, you shall find me ready to take any occasion to further your credit and preferment. And I dare assure you, though I am no undertaker, to prepare your way with my lord of Salisbury, for any good fortune which may befall you. You teach me to complain of business, whereby I write the more briefly; and yet I am so unjust, as that which I allege for mine own excuse, I cannot admit for yours: for I must, by expecting, exact your letters, with this fruit of your sufficiency, as to understand how things pass in that kingdom. And therefore having begun, I pray you continue. This is not merely curiosity, for I have ever, I know not by what instinct, wished well to that impolished part of this crown. And so, with my very loving commendations, I remain.
more unfit by the pre-occupation of my mind. There-
LXXVI. TO THE EARL OF NORTHAMPTON,*
VANCEMENT OF LEARNING" TO THE
world partaker. My labours, if I may so term that
IT MAY PLEASE YOUR GOOD LORDSHIP,
HAVING finished a work touching the advancement of learning, and dedicated the same to his sacred Majesty, whom I dare avouch, if the records of time err not, to be the learnedest king that hath reigned; I was desirous, in a kind of congruity, to present it by the learnedest counsellor in this kingdom; to the end that so good an argument, lighting upon so bad an author, might receive some reputation by the hands into which, and by which, it shall be delivered. And therefore, I make it my humble suit to your lordship, to present this mean but well meant writing to his Majesty, and with it my humble and zealous duty; and also my like humble request of pardon, if I have too often taken his name in vain, not only in the dedication, but in the Voucher of the authority of his speeches and writings. And so I remain.
LXXVII. TO SIR THOMAS BODLEY, UPON
SENDING HIS BOOK OF "ADVANCEMENT
I THINK no man may more truly say with the psalm, "Multum incola fuit anima mea," than myself; for, I do confess, since I was of any understanding, my mind hath in effect been absent from that I have done; and in absence are many errors, which I do willingly acknowledge; and, amongst the rest, this great one that led the rest; that knowing myself by inward calling to be fitter to hold a book, than to play a part, I have led my life in civil causes; for which I was not very fit by nature, and
The earl of Northampton was the second son, and bore the name of that accomplished gentleman, Henry Howard, earl of Surrey, son and heir to the duke of Norfolk, who suffered under the severity of king Henry VIII's latter days; the one by death, the other by imprisonment. During great part of the reign of queen Elizabeth, while his family lay under the cloud, he applied himself to learning; and to what a degree he arrived, appears by a book he published in 1583, against the poison of supposed prophecies, dedicated to Sir Francis Walsingham; and from the eulogy that was generally given him, that he was the most learned among the noble, and the most noble among the learned. But in the king's reign his advancement was speedy both in honours and riches. The services he performed as a commissioner in making the peace between England and Spain, gave birth to a saying in those times, but with what truth I know not, that his house in the Strand, now called Northumberland house, was built by Spanish gold. He died in 1614, leaving behind him the memory of some real good works, and of some supposed ill ones; being suspected of concealing his religion for many years, and of being privy to the untimely death of Sir Thomas Overbury. -Stephens.
+ Rawley's Resuscitatio. Sir Thomas Bodley restored the public library at Oxford, begun in the times of king Henry VI. by Humphrey, duke of
LXXVIII. TO THE EARL OF SALISBURY, 
IT MAY PLEASE YOUR GOOD LORDSHIP,
I PRESENT your lordship with a work of my vacant time, which if it had been more, the work had been better. It appertaineth to your lordship, besides my particular respects, in some propriety, in regard you are a great governor in a province of learning.
And, that which is more, you have added to your place affection towards learning; and to your affection judgment: of which the last I could be content were, for the time, less, that you might the less exquisitely censure that which I offer unto you. But sure I am, the argument is good, if it had lighted upon a good author. But I shall content myself to awake better spirits, like a bell-ringer, which is first up to call others to church. So with my humble desire of your lordship's good acceptation, I remain.
Gloucester; or was rather the founder of a new one, which now bears his name, and which hath placed him among the chief benefactors to that university, and to the commonwealth of learning. He died in the entrance of the year 1613.— Stephens.
Sir Robert Cecil, created by king James lord Cecil, viscount Cranburne, and earl Salisbury, was not only son to one of the greatest statesmen of his age, the lord Burleigh, but succeeded him in his places and abilities, and was one of the great supports of the queen's declining years. Yet the ill offices he was thought to perform towards the noble and popular earl of Essex, together with his conduct in some particulars in her successor's reign, abated the lustre of his character, which otherwise from his parts and prudence would have appeared very conspicuous. After he had been long secretary of state, some years lord treasurer and chancellor of the university of Cambridge, he died in May 1612, at Marlborough, in his return from the Bath; as by a diary of his sickness and the account given by Sir Robert Naunton, one of his retinue, appears; which I should not mention, but that his enemies in their libels, which flew freely about, have suggested that he died on the Downs; which, if true, could be esteemed at most but his misfortune.-Stephens.
TO THE LORD TREASURER BUCKHURST, ON THE SAME SUBJECT.†
IT MAY PLEASE YOUR GOOD LORDSHIP,
I PERCEIVE you have some time when you can be content to think of your friends; from whom since you have borrowed yourself, you do well, not pay
I HAVE finished a work touching the advancement or setting forward of learning, which I have dedicated to his Majesty, the most learned of a sovereigning the principal, to send the interest at six months or temporal prince that time hath known and day. The relation which here I send you enclosed, upon reason not unlike I humbly present one of the carries the truth of that which is public: and though books to your lordship; not only as a chancellor of my little leisure might have required a briefer, yet an university, but as one that was excellently bred the matter would have endured and asked a larger. in all learning; which I have ever noted to shine in I have now at last taught that child to go, at the all your speeches and behaviours and therefore My work touching your lordship will yield a gracious aspect to your the proficiency and advancement of learning, I have first love, and take pleasure in the adorning of that put into two books; whereof the former which you wherewith yourself are so much adorned. And so saw, I can't but account as a page to the latter. ] humbly desiring your favourable acceptation thereof, have now published them both; whereof I thought with signification of humble duty, I remain. 1605. it a small adventure to send you a copy, who have more right to it than any man, except bishop An drews, who was my inquisitor.
swaddling whereof you were. :
The death of the late great judge concerned not me, because the other was not removed. I write this in answer to your good wishes; which I return not as flowers || of Florence, but as you mean them whom I conceive place can't alter, no more than time shall me, except it be for the better. 1605.
LXXX. TO THE LORD CHANCELLOR, SIR T.
MAY IT PLEASE YOUR GOOD LORDSHIP,
I HUMBLY present your lordship with a work, wherein as you have much commandment over the author, so your lordship hath great interest in the argument; for, to speak without flattery, few have like use of learning, or like judgment in learning, as I have observed in your lordship. And again, your lordship hath been a great planter of learning, not only in those places in the church, which have been in your own gift, but also in your commendatory vote, no man hath more constantly held "Detur digniori:" and therefore, both your lordship is beholding to learning, and learning beholding to you which maketh me presume with good assurance that your lordship will accept well of these my labours; the rather because your lordship in private speech hath often begun to me in expressing your admiration of his Majesty's learning, to whom I have dedicated this work; and whose virtue and perfection in that kind did chiefly move me to a work of this nature; and so with signification of my most humble duty and affection to your lordship, I remain. 1605.
LXXXI. TO MR. MATTHEW.§
I shall draw this noble lord's character from Sir Robert Naunton's observations of the favourites of queen Elizabeth; and much in his own words: " My lord of Buckhurst was of the noble house of the Sackvilles, and of the queen's consanguinity. He was a very fine gentleman of person and endowments both of art and nature, but without measure magnificent, till on the turn of his humour, and the allay that his years, and good counsels of the queen, &c. had wrought upon those immoderate courses of his youth, and that height of spirit inherent to his house; she began to assist him in the reparation of that vast patrimony he had much wasted. After the honour she had given him of lord Buckhurst, and knight of the garter, she procured him to be chosen chancellor of the university of Oxford, upon the death of Sir Christopher Hatton, and constituted him lord treasurer on the death of the lord Burleigh, which office he enjoyed till April, 1608, dying then suddenly at the council table; the king having some years before created him carl of Dorset. He is also much commended for his
LXXXII. TO DR. PLAYFERE,¶ DESIRING HIM
MR. DR. PLAYFERE,
A GREAT desire will take a small occasion to hope and put in trial that which is desired. It pleased you a good while since to express unto me the goo liking which you conceived of my book of the ad vancement of learning; and that more significantly as it seemed to me, than out of courtesy or civi respect. Myself, as I then took contentment in you approbation thereof, so I should esteem and acknow ledge not only my contentment increased, but my labours advanced, if I might obtain your help in tha nature which I desire: wherein, before I set dow in plain terms my request unto you, I will oper myself, what it was which I chiefly sought and propounded to myself in that work; that you may perceive that which I now desire, to be pursuan
thereupon. If I do not much err, for any judgment
• Vir. Eel, ii. 27.
Thought. Matthew's Collection of Letters.
The unworthiness of the history of England hath been long complained of by ingenious men, both of this and other nations. Sir Francis Bacon hath expressed himself much to the same effect, though more at large, in his second book of The Advancement of Learning, (p. 30,) where he carries this period of remarkable events somewhat higher than in this letter, beginning with the union of the roses under Henry VII. and ending with the union of the kingdoms under king James. A portion of time filled with so great and variable
LXXXIII. TO THE LORD CHANCELLOR
IT MAY PLEASE YOUR GOOD LORDSHIP,
SOME late act of his Majesty, referred to some former speech which I have heard from your lordship, bred in me a great desire, and the strength of desire a boldness to make an humble proposition to your lordship, such as in me can be no better than a wish; but if your lordship should apprehend it, it may take some good and worthy effect. The act I speak of, is the order given by his Majesty for the erection of a tomb or monument for our late sovereign queen Elizabeth: wherein I may note much, but only this at this time, that as her Majesty did always right to his Majesty's hopes, so his highness doth in all things right to her memory; a very just and princely retribution. But from this occasion, by a very easy ascent, I passed farther, being put in mind, by this representative of her person, of the more true and more vive representation, which is of her life and government: for as statues and pictures are dumb histories, so histories are speaking pictures; wherein if my affection be not too great, or my reading too small, I am of this opinion, that if Plutarch were alive to write lives by parallels, it would trouble him both for virtue and fortune, to find for her a parallel amongst women. And though she was of the passive sex, yet her government was so active, as, in my simple opinion, it made more impression upon the several states of Europe, than it received from thence. But I confess unto your lordship I could not stay here, but went a little farther into the consideration of the times which have passed since king Henry VIII.; wherein I find the strangest variety, that in so little number of successions of any hereditary monarchy hath ever been known. The reign of a child; the offer of an usurpation, though it was but as a diary ague; the reign of a lady married to a foreigner; and the reign of a lady solitary and unmarried; so that as it cometh to pass in massy bodies, that they have certain trepidations and wavering before they fix and settle; so it seemeth that by the providence of God this monarchy, before it was to settle in his Majesty, and his generations, in which I hope it is now established for ever, hath had these prelusive changes in these barren princes. Neither could I contain myself here, as it is easier for a man to multiply than to stay a wish, but calling to remembrance the unworthiness of the history of England,|| in the main continuance thereof; and the partiality and obliquity of that of Scotland, in the latest and largest accidents both in church and state, and since so well discovered to the view of the world, that had other parts the same performance, we should not longer lie under any reproach of this kind. The reign of king Henry VII. was written by our author soon after his retirement, with so great beauty of style, and wisdom of observation, that nothing can be more entertaining; the truth of history not being disguised with the false colours of romance. It was so acceptable a present to the P. of Wales, that when he became king, he commanded him to proceed with the reign of king Henry VIII. But my lord Bacon meditating the history of nature, which he hardly lived to publish; his ill state of health, and succeeding death, put an end to this and other noble designs;