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SIR FRANCIS BACON TO THE KING, TOUCHING
THE SOLICITOR'S PLACE.
to add pledge, if not payment to my promise. Il lords, and towards the end of the last term, the send you, also, a memorial of Queen Elizabeth, manner, also, in particular, was spoken of ; that is, to requite your Eulogy of the late Duke of Flo- that Mr. Solicitor should be made your majesty's rence's felicity. Of this, when you were here, I sergeant, and I solicitor, for so it was thought showed you some model, though, at that time, best, to sort with both our gifts and faculties, for methought you were as willing to hear Julius the good of your service. And of this resolution Cæsar as Queen Elizabeth commended. But this both court and country took knowledge. Neither which I send is more full, and hath more of the was this any invention or project of mine own, narrative; and farther hath one part that I think but moved from my lords; and I think, first, from will not be disagreeable, either to you, or that my lord chancellor. Whereupon resting, your place, being the true tracts of her proceeding majesty well knoweth, I never opened my mouth towards the Catholics, which are infinitely mis- for the greater place, though I am sure I had two taken. And though I do not imagine they will circumstances, that Mr. Attorney now is, could pass allowance there, yet they will gain upon ex- not allege. The one, nine years' service of the
I find Mr. Lezure to use you well, (I mean crown; the other, being cousin-german to the Lord his tongue, of you,) which shows you either of Salisbury, whom your majesty seemeth and honest or wise. But this I speak merely; for, in trusteth so much. But for less place, I conceived, good faith, I conceive hope, that you will so it was meant me. But after that Mr. Attorney govern yourself, as we may take you as assuredly Hubbert was placed, I heard no more of my prefor a good subject, and patriot, as you take your- ferment, but it seemed to be at a stop, to my great self for a good Christian; and so we may enjoy disgrace and discouragement. For, (gracious your company, and you your conscience, if it may sovereign,) if still when the waters are stirred, no otherwise be. For my part, assure yourself another shall be put before me, your majesty had that, as we say in the law, - mutatis mutandis," need work a miracle, or else I shall be still a lame my love and good wishes to you are diminished. man to do your majesty service. And, therefore, And so I remain.
my most humble suit to your majesty is, that this which seemed to me was intended, may speedily be performed. And I hope my former service shall be but beginnings to better, when I am better strengthened. For sure I am, no man's heart is
fuller (I say not but many have greater hearts, How honestly ready I have been, most gracious but I say, not fuller) of love and duty towards sovereign, to do your majesty humble service to your majesty, and your children, as I hope time the best of my power, and in a manner beyond will manifest against envy and detraction, if any my power, (as I now stand,) I am not so unfor- be. To conclude, I most humbly crave pardon tunate but your majesty knoweth. For, both in for my boldness, and rest the commission of union, (the labour whereof, for men of my profession, rested most upon my hand,) and this last parliament in the bill of the subsidy, (both body and preamble,) in the bill of attain
SIR FRANCIS BACON TO THE KING, HIS SUIT TO ders of Tresham, and the rest, in the matter of purveyance, in the ecclesiastical petitions, in the grievances, and the like; as I was ever careful IT MAY PLEASE YOUR MAJESTY, (and not without good success) sometimes to put Your great and princely favours towards me in forward that which was good, sometimes to keep advancing me to place, and that which is to me back that which was not so good; so your majesty of no less comfort, your majesty's benign and was pleased to accept kindly of my services, and gracious acceptation from time to time of my poor to say to me, such conflicts were the wars of peace, services, much above the merit and value of them, and such victories, the victories of peace; and, hath almost brought me to an opinion, that I may therefore, such servants that obtained them were, sooner perchance be wanting to myself in not by kings that reign in peace, no less to be esteemed asking, than find your majesty's goodness wantthan services of commanders in the wars. In all ing to me, in any my reasonable and modest which, nevertheless, I can challenge to myself no desires. And, therefore, perceiving how at this sufficiency, but that I was diligent and reasonably time preferments of law fly about my ears, to some happy to execute those directions which I received above me, and to some below me, I did conceive either immediately from your royal mouth, or from your majesty may think it rather a kind of dulness, my Lord of Salisbury; at which time it pleased or want of faith, than modesty, if I should not your majesty to promise and assure me, that upon come with my pitcher to Jacob's Well, as others the reniove of the then attorney, I should not be do. Wherein I shall propound to your majesty, forgotten, but brought into ordinary place. And that which tendeth not so much to the raising my this was after confirmed to me by many of my fortune, as to the settling of my mind, being
SUCCEED IN THE ATTORNEY'S PLACE,
sometimes assailed with this cogitation, that by i book that endeavoured to verify, 6 Misera fæmina” reason of my slowness to sue and apprehend | (the addition of the pope's bull) upon Queen sudden occasions, keeping on one plain course of Elizabeth ; I did write a few lines in her memorial, painful service, I may (in fine dierum) be in danger which I thought you would be well pleased to to be neglected and forgotten. And if that should read, both for the argument, and because you be, then were it much better for me now while I were wont to bear affection to my pen.
66 Verum, stand in your majesty's good opinion, (though ut aliud ex alio,'' if it came handsomely to pass, I unworthy,) and have some reputation in the would be glad the President De Thou (who hath world, to give over the course I am in, and to written a history, as you know, of that fame and make proof to do you some honour by my pen; diligence) saw it; chiefly because I know not, either by writing some faithful narrative of your whether it may not serve him for some use in his happy (though not untraduced) times, or by re- story ; wherein I would be glad he did right to compiling your laws, which, I perceive, your the truth, and to the memory of that lady, as I majesty laboureth with, and hath in your head, perceive by that he hath already written, he is (as Jupiter had Pallas,) or some other the like well inclined to do; I would be glad also, it were work, (for without some endeavour to do you some occasion (such as absence may permit) of honour I would not live,) than to spend my wits some acquaintance or mutual notice between us. and time in this laborious place, wherein now I For though he hath many ways the precedence,
if it shall be deprived of those outward (chiefly in worth,) yet this is common to them ornaments, and inward comforts, which it was both, that we may serve our sovereigns in places wont to have in respect of an assured succession of law eminent, and not ourselves only, but that to some place of more dignity and rest, which our fathers did so before us; and, lastly, that both seemeth now to be a hope altogether casual, if of us love learning, and liberal sciences, which was not wholly intercepted. Wherefore, (not to hold ever a bond of friendship, in the greatest distances your inajesty long,) my suit (than the which I of places. But of this I make no farther request, think I cannot well go lower) is, that I may than your own occasions and respects (to me unobtain your royal promise to succeed (if I live) known) may further or limit, my principal purinto the attorney's place, whensoever it shall be pose being to salute you, and to send you this void, it being but the natural, and immediate step token, whereunto I will add my very kind comand rise, which the place I now hold hath ever mendations to my lady. And so commit you both (in sort) made claim to, and almost never failed to God's holy protection. of. In this suit I make no friends to your majesty, but rely upon no other motive than your grace, nor any other assurance but your word, whereof I had good experience when I came to the solicitor's place, that they were like to the two great lights, which in their motions are never retro- MAY IT PLEASE YOUR MOST EXCELLENT MAJESTY, grade. So, with my best prayer for your majesty's It is observed, upon a place in the Canticles by happiness, I rest
some, -. Ego sum Flos Campi, et Lilium Convallium;" that it is not said, “ Ego sum flos horti, et lilium montium:" because the majesty of that person is not enclosed for a few, nor appropriate
to the great. And yet, notwithstanding, this royal SIR FRANCIS BACON TO SIR GEORGE CARY IN FRANCE, UPON SENDING HIM HIS WRITING, " IN virtue of access, which nature and judgment hath FELICEM MEMORIAM ELIZABETHÆ."
placed in your majesty's mind, as the portal of
all the rest, could not of itself (my imperfections MY VERY GOOD LORD,
considered) have animated me to have made oblaBeing asked the question by this bearer, an old tion of myself immediately to your majesty, had servant of my brother Anthony Bacon, whether I it not been joined to a habit of like liberty which would command him any service into France, and I enjoyed with my late dear sovereign mistress, being at better leisure than I would, in regard of a princess happy in all things, but most happy in sickness, I began to remember, that neither your such a successor. And yet, farther, and more business nor mine (though great and continual) nearly, I was not a little encouraged, not only can be, upon an exact account, any just occa- upon a supposal, that unto your majesty's sacred sion why so much good-will as hath passed ears (open to the air of all virtues) there might between us should be so much discontinued as it have come some small breath of the good memory hath been. And, therefore, because one must of my father, so long a principal counsellor in begin, I thought to provoke your remembrance of your kingdom, but also, by the particular know me, by my letter. And thinking how to fit it with ledge of the infinite devotion, and incessant ensomewhat besides salutations, it came to my mind, deavours, beyond the strength of his body, and that this last summer, by occasion of a factious I the nature of the times, which appeared in my
SIR FRANCIS BACON TO THE KING.
THE KING'S ENTRY.
good brother towards your majesty's service, and the other side, I will not omit to desire humbly were on your majesty's part, through your singular your lordship’s favour, in furthering a good conbenignities, by many most gracious and lively ceit and impression of my most humble duty, and significations and favours accepted and acknow- true zeal towards the king, to whose majesty ledged, beyond the thought of any thing he could words cannot make me known, neither mine own effect: all which endeavours and duties, for the nor others, but time will, to no disadvantage of most part, were common to myself with him, any that shall forerun his majesty's experience, though my design between brethren dissembled. by their humanity and commendations. And so And, therefore, most high and mighty king, my I commend your lordship to God's protection. most dear and dread sovereign lord, since now
Your, etc. the corner-stone is laid of the mightiest monarchy
FR. BACON. in Europe, and that God above, who is noted to From Gray's Inn, etc. have a mighty hand in bridling the floods and fluctuations of the seas, and of people's hearts, hath by the miraculous and universal consent, (the more strange, because it proceedeth from SIR FRANCIS BACON TO THE EARL OF NORTUUM
BERLAND, CONCERNING A PROCLAMATION UPON such diversity of causes,) in your coming in, given a sign and token, what he intendeth in the continuance; I think there is no subject of your IT MAY PLEASE your LORDSHIP, majesty, who loveth this island, and is not hollow I do hold it a thing formal and necessary, for and unworthy, whose heart is not on fire, not only the king to forerun his coming, be it never so to bring you peace-offerings to make you propiti- speedy, with some gracious declaration for the ous; but to sacrifice himself as a burnt-offering cherishing, entertaining, and preparing of men's
your majesty's service: amongst which number, affections. For which purpose I have conceived no man's fire shall be more pure and fervent; but | a draught, it being a thing to me familiar, in my how far forth it shall blaze out, that resteth in mistress her times, to have used my pen in politic your majesty's employment: for, since your for- writings of satisfaction. The use of this may be tune, in the greatness thereof, hath for a time in two sorts: First, properly, if your lordship debarred your majesty of the fruitful virtue which think convenient to show the king any such one calleth the principal, “ Principis est virtus draught, because the veins and pulses of this maxima nôsse suos," because your majesty hath state cannot but be known here; which if your many of yours, which are unknown unto you, I lordship should, then I would desire your lordship must leave all to the trial of farther time; and, to withdraw my name, and only signify that you thirsting after the happiness of kissing your gave some heads of direction of such a matter to royal hand, continue ever
one of whose style and pen you had some opinion. Your, etc.
The other collateral, that though your lordship FR. BACON. make no other use of it, yet it is a kind of portrai
ture of that which I think worthy to be advised
by your lordship to the king, to express himself SIR FRANCIS BACON, TO THE LORD KINLOSS, ceived, and perhaps more compendious and signi
according to those points which are therein conficant than if I had set them down in articles. I
would have attended your lordship, but for some The present occasion awakeneth in me a remern- little physic I took. To morrow morning I will brance of the constant amity and mutual good wait on you. So I ever continue, etc. offices which passed between my brother deceased
FR. BACON. and your lordship, whereunto I was less strange, than in respect of the time I had reason to pretend; and withal I call to mind the great opinion my brother (who seldom failed in judgment of a person) would often express me of your lordship's great wisdom and soundness, both in head and MR. ATTORNEY, heart, towards the service and affairs of our sove- I thought best, once for all, to let you know in reign lord the king. The one of those hath bred plainness, what I find of you, and what you shall in me an election, and the other a confidence, to find of me. You take to yourself a liberty to disaddress my good will and sincere affection to grace and disable my law, experience, and disyour good lordship, not doubting, in regard my cretion; what it pleases you I pray think of me. course of life hath wrought me not to be alto- I am one that know both mine own wants and gether unseen in the matters of the kingdom, that other men's; and it may be, perchance, that mine I may be in some use, both in points of service to may mend when others stand at a stay: And, the king, and your lordship's particular: And, on surely, I may not in public place endure to be
UPON THE ENTRANCE OF KING JAMES.
SIR FRANCIS BACON TO SIR EDWARD COKE
wronged, without repelling the same to my best pleasure. But this I leave with this, that it is advantage, to right myself. You are great, and the first matter wherein I had occasion to discern therefore have the more enviers, which would be of your friendship, which I see to fall to this, glad to have you paid at another's cost. Since that whereas Mr. Chancellor, the last time in my the time I missed the solicitor's place, the rather, man's hearing, very honourably said, that he I think, by your means, I cannot expect that you would not discontent any man in my place, it and I shall ever serve as attorney and solicitor seems you have no such caution. But my writing together, but either to serve with another upon to you now, is to know of you, where now the your remove, or to step into some other course. stay is, without being any more beholden to you, So as I am more free than ever I was from any to whom indeed no man ought to be beholden in occasion of unworthy confirming myself to you, those cases in a right course.
And so I bid you more than general good manners, or your particu- farewell. lar good usage shall provoke; and if you had not
FR. BACON. been short-sighted in your own fortune, (as I think,) you might have had more use of me; but that tide is past. I write not this to show any friends what a brave letter I have writ to Mr. SIR FRANCIS BACON TO THE LORD CHANCELLOR, Attorney; I have none of those humours, but that IT MAY PLEASE YOUR LORDSHIP, I have written is to a good end, that is, to the As I conceived it to be a resolution, both with more decent carriage of my master's service, and his majesty, and among your lordships of his to our particular better understanding one another. council, that I should be placed solicitor, and the This letter, if it shall be answered by you in deed, solicitor to be removed to be the king's serjeant; and not in word, I suppose it will not be the worse so I most humbly thank your lordship's fartherfor us both; else it is but a few lines lost, which ness and forwardness therein, your lordship befor a much smaller matter I would adventure. So, ing the man that first devised the mean; wherethis being to yourself, I for my part rest,
fore my humble request unto your lordship is, Yours, etc.
that you would set in with some strength to FR. BACON.
finish this your work; which (I assure yourself) I desire the rather, because, being placed, I hope, for your many favours, to be able to do you some
better service: for as I am, your lordship cannot SIR FRANCIS BACON TO SIR VINCENT SKINNER,
use me, nor scarcely indeed know me; not that I
vainly think I shall be able to do any great matSIR VINCENT SKINNER,
ter, but certainly it will frame me to use a more I see by your needless delays, this matter is industrious observance and application to such as grown to a new question, wherein, for the matter I honour so much as I do your lordship, and not, itself, it had been stayed at the beginning by my I hope, without some good offices, which may lord treasurer, and Mr. Chancellor, I should deserve your thanks. And herewithal, good my not so much have stood upon it; for the great lord, I humbly pray your lordship to consider, and daily travails which I take in his majesty's that time groweth precious with
and that a service, either are rewarded in themselves, in married man is years seven older in his thoughts that they are but my duty, or else may deserve a the first day; and therefore what a discomfortamuch greater matter. Neither can I think amiss ble thing it is for me to be unsettled still. For, of any man, that in furtherance of the king's surely, were it not that I think myself born for benefit, moved the doubt, that I knew not what to do my sovereign service, and therefore in that warrant you had, but my wrong is, that you station I will live and die; otherwise, for mine havir.g had my lord treasurer's, and Mr. Chan- own private comfort, it were better for me that cellor's warrant for payment, above a month the king should blot me out of his book, or that since, you (I say) making your payments, be- I should turn my course to endeavour to serve Jike, upon such differences as are better known him in some other kind, than for me to stand to yourself, than agreeable to due respect of his thus at a stop, and to have that little reputation majesty's service, have delayed all this time, which by my industry I gather, to be scattered otherwise than I might have expected either from and taken away by continual disgraces, every our ancient acquaintance, or from that regard new man coming in before me; and sure I am, I that one in your place may owe to one in shall never have fairer promises and hope from mine. By occasion whereof there ensueth to me all your lordships, and I would believe you in a a greater inconvenience, that now my name, in far greater matter: and if it were nothing else, I sort, must be in question among you, as if I were hope the modesty of my suit deserveth somea man likely to demand that that were unreason- what; for I know well the solicitor's place is not able, or to be denied that that is reasonable; and as your lordship left it, time working alteration, this must be, because you can pleasure men at somewhat in the profession, much more in that
special place. And were it not to satisfy my diligent, and reasonably happy to execute those wife's friends, and to get myself out of being a directions which I have received, either immediatecommon gaze, and a speech, (I protest before ly from your royal mouth, or from my Lord of God, I would never speak word for it. But to Salisbury. At that time it pleased your majesty conclude, as my honourable lady was some mean also to assure me, that upon the remove of the to make me to change the name of another; so, then attorney, I should not be forgotten, but be if it please you to help me, as you said, to change brought into ordinary place; and this was conmine own name, I cannot be but more and more firmed unto me by many of my lords. And towards bounden to you; and I am much deceived, if the end of the last term, the manner also in particuyour lordship find not the king well inclined : as lar spoken of, that is, that Mr. Solicitor should be for my Lord of Salisbury, he is forward and affec- made your majesty's serjeant, and I solicitor; for tionate.
so it was thought best to sort with both our gifts Yours, etc.
and faculties for the good of our service, and of FR. BACON.
this resolution both court and country took notice. Neither was this any invention or project of mine
own, but moved from my lords, I think first from SIR FRANCIS BACON TO THE KING.*
my lord chancellor; whereupon resting, your IT MAY PLEASE YOUR MOST EXCELLENT MAJESTY,
majesty well knoweth, I never opened my mouth How honestly ready I have been, most gracious for the greater place, although, I am sure, I had sovereign, to do your majesty humble service to two circumstances that Mr. Attorney that now is the best of my power, and in a manner beyond could not allege; the one nine years’ service of the my power, as I now stand, I am not so unfortunate crown; the other, the being cousin-german to my but your majesty knows; both in the commission Lord of Salisbury; for of my father's service I will of union, the labour whereof, for men of my pro- not speak. But for the less place, I conceive, it fession, rested most upon my hands; and this last was never meant me: but after that Mr. Attorney parliament, for the bill of subsidy, both body and Hubbard was placed, I heard no more of any prepreamble: in the bill of attainders of Tresham, ferment, but it seemed to be at a stop, to my and the rest; in the matter of purveyance, in the great disgrace and discontentment. For, gracious ecclesiastical petitions, in the grievances, and the sovereign, if still, when the waters be stirred, anlike; as I was ever careful, not without good suc- other shall be put in before me, your majesty hath cess, sometimes to put forward that which was need work a miracle, or else I shall be a lame man good, sometimes to keep back that which was to do your services. And therefore my most worse ; so your majesty was pleased kindly to hunible suit unto your majesty is, that this, which accept of my services, and to say to me, such con- seemed to me intended, may speedily be performflicts were the wars of peace, and such victories ed; and I hope my former services shall be but the victories of peace; and therefore such servants as beginnings to better, when I am better strengthas obtained them were, by kings that reign in ened : for sure I am no man's heart is fuller, I say peace, no less to be esteemed than conquerors in not, but many may have greater hearts, but I say the wars. In all which, nevertheless, I can not fuller of love and duty towards your majesty challenge to myself no sufficiency, that I was and your children, as I hope time will manifest
against envy and detraction, if any be. To con* This is merely a copy of a letter, which will be found in clude, I humbly crave pardon for my boldness, page 32, but there are some variations, which have induced
Yours, etc. me to insert both of them: In the latter letter he refers to his