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9. When the said Lord lost his Treasurer's place, he came to my Lord St. Alban, and told him how they had used him; that though they had taken away the Lord Treasurer's place, yet they had made him Lord President of the Counsel: Why, saith my Lord St. Alban, the King hath made me an example and 'you a president.1
10. When Sergeant Heale who is known to be good in giving in evidence, but otherwise unlearned in the law, was made the Queen's sergeant, Mr. Bacon said; The Queen should have a sergeant de facto et non de jure.
11. At the King's Bench bar, Sergeant Heale, before he was the Queen's sergeant, contended with Mr. Bacon to be first heard; and said, Why I am your ancient: Mr. Bacon gently answered, Not in this place; for I staid here long, and you are come but right now.
12. There was a tall gentleman and a low gentleman were saying they would go to the Shrive's to dinner; Go, saith the one, and I will be your shadow. Nay, saith the other, I will be your shadow. Mr. Bacon standing by said, I'll tell you what you shall do: Go to dinner and supper both; and at dinner when [the shadows are] shorter than the bodies, you shall be the shadow; and at supper you shall be the other's shadow.2
1 So precedent was usually spelt in those days.
2 So the MS. It should be "the other shall be your shadow." But the thing is better told in a common-place book of Bacon's own (Harl. MSS. 7017.). "The two that went to a feast both at dinner and supper, neither known, the one a tall, the other a short man; and said they would be one another's shadows. It was replied, it fell out fit: for at noon the short man might be the long man's shadow and at night the contrary."
13. He thought Moses was the greatest sinner that was, for he never knew any break both tables at once but he.1
14. He said he had feeding swans and breeding swans; but for malice, he thanked God, he neither fed it nor bred it.2
15. At the Parliament, when King James spied Mr. Gorge, one of my Lord Chancellor's men, who was somewhat fantastical, and stood by there with one rose white and another black; the King called my Lord unto him, and said easily in his ear; My Lord Chancellor, why does your man yonder wear one rose white and another black? My Lord answered; In truth, Sir, I know not, unless it be that his mistress loves a colt with one white foot.
16. Sir Walter Coape and Sir Francis Bacon were competitors for the Mastership of the Wards. Francis Bacon certainly expecting the place had put most of his men into new cloaks. Afterward when Sir Walter Coape carried the place, one said merrily that Sir Walter was Master of the Wards, and Sir Francis Bacon of the Liveries.
17. My Lord St. Alban said, that wise nature did never put her precious jewels into a garret four stories high and therefore that exceeding tall men had ever very empty heads.
18. My Lord St. Alban invited Sir Ed. Skory to go with him to dinner to a Lord Mayor's feast. My Lord sate still and picked a little upon one dish only.
1 This is written in cipher.
2 This saying is alluded to by Rawley in his Life of Bacon.
3 I have seen this quoted somewhere as Bacon's answer to King James when pressed for his opinion as to the capacity of a French ambassador who was very tall.
After they returned to York-house, my Lord wished him to stay and sup with him and told him he should be witness of the large supper he would make: telling him withal: Faith, if I should sup for a wager, I would dine with a Lord Mayor.
19. Sir Robert Hitcham said, He cared not though men laughed at him: he would laugh at them again. My Lord St. Alban answered, If he did so he would be the merriest man in England.
20. My Lord St. Alban would never say of a Bishop the Lord that spake last, but the Prelate that spake last. King James chid him for it, and said he would have him know that the Bishops were not only Pares, as the other Lords were, but Prælati paribus.1
21. He was a wise man 2 that gave the reason why a man doth not confess his faults. It is, Quia etiam nunc in illis est.
22. Will you tell any man's mind before man's mind before you have '. conferred with him? So doth Aristotle in raising his axioms upon Nature's mind.
23. Old Lord Keeper Sir Nicholas Bacon had his barber rubbing and combing his head. Because it was very hot, the window was open to let in a fresh wind. The Lord Keeper fell asleep, and awaked all distempered and in great sweat. Said he to his barber, Why did you let me sleep? Why, my Lord, saith he, I durst not wake your Lordship. Why then, saith my
1 This I think must be misreported. It must have been Bacon who defended himself on this ground for preferring "Prelate" to "Peer:" for so Prelate would imply Peer, whereas Peer would not imply Prelate. 2 Seneca, Ep. 53.
8 "The 4 of February [21 Eliz. i. e. 1578-9]. . . . fell such abundance of snow, &c. . . . It snowed till the eight day and freezed till the tenth. Then followed a thaw, with continual rain a long time after. . . The 20 of February deceased Sir Nicholas Bacon."— Stowe's Chronicle.
Lord, you have killed me with kindness. So removed into his bed chamber and within a few days died.
24. Four things cause so many rheums in these days, as an old country fellow told my Lord St. Alban. Those were, drinking of beer instead of ale; using glass windows instead of lattice windows; wearing of silk stockings; missing of smoky chimneys.
25. King James and Gondomar were discoursing in Latin. The King spoke somewhat of Tully's Latin. Gondomar spoke very plain stuff. Gondomar laughed. The King asked him, Why he laughed? He answered, Because your Majesty speaks Latin like a scholar, and I speak Latin like a King.
26. Gondomar said, Compliment was too hot for summer, and too cold in winter. He meant it against the French.
27. King Henry the fourth of France having an oration offered him, and the orator beginning "Great Alexander," said the King, Come let's begone.
28. The beggar, that instructed his son, when he saw he would not be handsome, said, You a beggar! I'll make you a ploughman.
29. Marquis Fiatt's first compliment to my Lord St. Albans was, That he reverenced him as he did the angels, whom he read of in books, but never saw.1
1 Bacon being ill and confined to his bed, so that though admitted to his room he could not see him. Compare Rawley's Life of Bacon, Vol. I. p. 54. Tenison (Baconiana, p. 101.) makes Fiatt say, "Your Lordship hath been to me hitherto like the angels, of which I have often heard and read, but never saw them before:" (the words "hitherto " and "before" being his own interpolation, and entirely spoiling the story;) and proceeds, "To which piece of courtship he returned such answer as became a man in those circumstances, 'Sir, the charity of others does liken me to an angel, but my own infirmities tell me I am a man;'" of which reply there is no hint in Rawley, either in the common-place book or in the life: an addition, I suspect, by a later hand.
30. My Lord Chancellor Ellesmere's saying of a man newly married; God send him joy, and some sorrow too, as we say in Cheshire. The same my
Lord St. Alban said of the Master of the Rolls.
31. My Lord St. Alban said, when Dr. Williams, Dean of Westminster, was made Lord Keeper; I had thought I should have known my successor.
32. My Lord St. Alban having a dog which he loved sick, put him to a woman to keep. The dog died. My Lord met her next day and said, How doth my dog? She answered in a whining tone, and putting her handkerchief to her eye, The dog is well, I hope.
33. The physician that came to my Lord after his recovery, before he was perfectly well. The first time, he told him his pulse was broken-paced; the next time, it tripped; the third day, it jarred a little. My Lord said, he had nothing but good words for his money.
34. Mr. Anthony Bacon chid his man (Prentise) for calling him no sooner. He said, It was very early day. Nay, said Mr. Bacon, the rooks have been up these two hours. He replied, The rooks were but new up it was some sick rook that could not sleep.
35. [The following is not given in any of these collections, but comes from a letter of Mr. John Chamberlain to Sir Dudley Carleton, 11. Oct. 1617. See Court and Times of James I., ii. p. 38.]
The Queen lately asked the Lord Keeper [Sir F. Bacon], What occasion the Secretary [Sir R. Winwood] had given him to oppose himself so violently against him who answered prettily, "Madam, I can say no more, but he is proud, and I am proud."