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REIGN OF QUEEN ELIZABETH.
It may please your good Lordships, I AM sorry the joint masque from the four inns of court Harl.mss. faileth ; wherein I conceive there is no other ground of Vol. 7042. that event but impossibility. Nevertheless, because it falleth out that at this time Gray's Inn is well furnished of gallant young gentlemen, your lordship may be pleased to know, that rather than this occasion shall pass without some demonstration of affection from the inns of court, there are a dozen gentlemen of Gray's Inn, that out of the honour which they bear to your lordship and my lord chamberlain, to whom at their last masque they were so much bounden, will be ready to furnish a masque ; wishing it were in their power to perform it according to their mind. And so for the present I humbly take my leave, resting Your Lordship's very humble and much bounden,
II. A LETTER of ceremony to Queen ELIZA- Rawley's BETH, upon the sending of a new-year's gift. ties
It may please your sacred Majesty, ACCORDING to the ceremony of the time, I would not forget, in all humbleness, to present your Majesty with a small new-year's gift: nothing to my mind. And therefore to supply it, I cannot but pray to God to give your Majesty his new-year's gift; that is, a new
jesty's gracious disposition and royal word, that your Majesty will include me in any extraordinary course of your sovereign pleasure, which your Majesty shall like to take in this cause. The other man, I spoke to your Majesty of, may, within these two terms, be in the same straits, between your Majesty's justice and mercy, that this man now is, if your Majesty be so pleased. So most humbly craving pardon for my presuming to seek access for these few lines, I recommend your Majesty to the most precious custody and best preservation of the Divine Majesty.
Your Majesty's most humble,
and entirely obedient servant and subject.
V. To the Queen.
Rawley's It may please your excellent Majesty, I PRESUME according to the ceremony and good manner of the time and my accustomed duty, in all humbleness to present your Majesty with a simple gift; almost as far from answering my mind, as sorting with your greatness; and therewith wish, that we may continue to reckon on, and ever, your Majesty's happy years of reign : and they that reckon upon any other hopes, I would they might reckon short and to their cost. And so craving pardon most humbly, I commend your Majesty to the preservation of the divine goodness. VI. To the QUEEN.
Rawley's It may please your excellent Majesty, , I MOST humbly intreat your Majesty, not to im-pute my absence to any weakness of mind or unworthiness. But, I assure your Majesty, I do find envy beating so strongly upon me, standing as I do, if this be to stand, as it were not strength of mind, but stupidity, if I should not decline the occasions; except I could do your Majesty more service than I can any ways discern that I am able to do. My course towards your Majesty, God is my witness, hath been pure and unleavened: and never poor gentleman, as I am per
year, that shall be as no year to your body, and as a year with two harvests to your coffers; and every other way prosperous and gladsome. And so I remain,
Your Majesty's loyal and obedient subject.
Rawley's III. A LETTER of ceremony to Queen ElizaResuscita
BETH, upon the sending of a new-year's gift.
Most excellent sovereign Mistress, The only new-year's gift, which I can give your Majesty, is that, which God hath given to me; which is, a mind in all humbleness to wait upon your commandments and business : wherein I would to God, that I were hooded, that I saw less; or that I could perform more : for now I am like a hawk, that bates, when I see occasion of service, but cannot fly because I am tied to another's fist. But mean while, I continue my presumption of making to your Majesty my poor oblation of a garment; as unworthy the wearing, as his service, that sends it, but the approach to your excellent person may give worth to both; which is all the happiness I aspire unto.
IV. To the Queen. It may please your sacred Majesty, I WOULD not fail to give your Majesty my most humble and due thanks, for your royal choice of such commissioners in the great star-chamber cause; being persons, besides their honour, of such science and integrity : by whose report I doubt not but your Majesty will find that, which you have been heretofore informed, both by my lord keeper, and by some much meaner person, touching the nature of that cause, to be true. This preparatory hearing doth already assail me, with new and enlarged offers of composition; .which if I had born a mind to have hearkened unto, this matter had been quenched long ago, without any benefit to your Majesty. But your Majesty's benefit is to me in greater regard than mine own particular: trusting to your Ma