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position of his royal power in any thing. He commanded the lords in state of judicature, to give life, by a careful execution, unto the law, which otherwise was but mortuum cadaver et bona peritura.
Thus much touching the legal part of my advertisement unto you. I will give your lordship an account in two lines of the complement of the country, time, and place.
The country affords more profit and better contentment, than I could ever promise myself, by my reading of it.
The king was never more chearful in body and mind, never so well pleased: and so are the English of all conditions.
The entertainment, very honourable, very general, and very full: every day feasts and invitations. I know not who paid for it. They strive, by direction, to give us all fair contentment, that we may know, that the country is not so contemptible, but that it is worth the cherishing.
The lord provost of this town, who in English is the mayor, did feast the king and all the lords this week; and another day all the gentlemen. And, I confess, it was performed with state, with abundance, and with a general content.
There is a general, and a bold expectation, that Mr. John Murray shall be created a baron of this country; and some do chat, that my lord of Buckingham's Mr. Wray shall be a groom of the bedchamber in his place.
There hath been yet no creation of lords, since his majesty did touch Scotland; but of knights many, yet not so many as we heard in England; but it is thought all the pensioners will be knights to-morrow. Neither are there any more English lords sworn of the privy council here, save my lord of Buckingham. The earl of Southampton, Montgomery, and Hay, are already gone for England.
I have made good profit of my journey hither; for I have gotten a transcript of the speech, which your lordship did deliver at your first and happy sitting in
chancery; which I could not gain in England. It hath been shewed to the king, and received due approbation. The God of heaven, all-wise and allsufficient, guard and assist your lordship in all your actions: for I can read here whatsoever your lordship doth act there; and your courses be such, as you need not to fear to give copies of them. But the king's ears be wide and long, and he seeth with many eyes. All this works for your honour and comfort. I pray God nothing be soiled, heated, or cooled in the carriage. Envy sometimes attends virtues, and not for good; and these bore certain proprieties and circumstances inherent to your lordship's mind; which men may admire, I cannot express. But I will wade no farther herein, lest I should seem eloquent. I have been too saucy with your lordship, and held you too long with my idleness. He that takes time from your lordship, robs the public. God give your body health, and your soul heaven.
My lord of Pembroke, my lord of Arundel, my lord Zouch, and Mr. Secretary Lake, were new sworn of the council here.
TO THE EARL OF BUCKINGHAM.
My very good Lord,
I HAVE sent inclosed a letter to his majesty concerning the strangers; in which business I had formerly written to your lordship a joint letter with my lord of Canterbury, and my lord Privy Seal, (a) and Mr. Secretary Winwood.
I am, I thank God, much relieved with my being in the country-air, and the order I keep; so that of late years I have not found my health better.
Your lordship writeth seldomer than you were wont; but when you are once gotten into England, you will be more at leisure. God bless and prosper you. Your Lordship's true and devoted
friend and servant,
Gorhambury, July 29, 1617.
(a) Edward, earl of Worcester.
TO THE LORD KEEPER. (a)
My honourable Lord,
I HAVE acquainted his majesty with your letter, who in this business of Sir John Bennet's, (b) hath altogether followed your lordship's direction.
His majesty hath at length been pleased to dispatch Mr. Lowder, (c) according to your lordship's desire, for the place in Ireland. What the cause of the stay was, I shall impart to your lordship, when I see you, being now too long to relate.
His majesty hath not yet had leisure to read the little book you sent me to present unto him; but, as soon as I see the fittest opportunity, I will offer it to him again.
His majesty, God be thanked, is very well; and I am exceeding glad to hear of your health, that you are of so good term-proof, which is the best of it, being you are in those businesses put most to the trial, which I wish may long continue in that strength, that you may still do his majesty and your country that good service, whereof we hear so general approbation, that it much rejoiceth me, who rest
Your Lordship's ever at command,
Falkland, the 5th of July, 1617.
(a) Harl. MSS. Vol. 7006.
(b) Of Godstow in Oxfordshire, who was sent to Brussels to the archduke, to expostulate with him concerning a libel on the king, imputed to Erycius Puteanus, and intitled, Isaaci Casauboni Corona Regia.
(c) He had been solicitor to the queen; but finding her dislike of him, he was willing to part with his place for that of one of the barons of the exchequer in Ireland; for which he was recommended by the lord keeper to the earl of Buckingham, in a letter dated at Whitehall, May 25, 1617.
TO THE KING. (a)
May it please your most excellent Majesty, I DO very much thank your majesty for your letter, and think myself much honoured by it. For though it contain some matter of dislike, in which respect it hath grieved me more than any event which hath fallen out in my life; yet because I know reprehensions from the best masters to the best servants are necessary; and that no chastisement is pleasant for the time, but yet worketh good effects; and for that I find intermixed some passages of trust and grace: and find also in myself inwardly sincerity of intention, and conformity of will, howsoever I may have erred; I do not a little comfort myself, resting upon your majesty's accustomed favour; and most humbly desiring, that any one of my particular notions may be expounded by the consent and direct course, which, your majesty knoweth, I have ever held in your service.
And because it hath pleased your majesty, of your singular grace and favour, to write fully and freely unto me; it is duty and decorum in me not to write shortly to your majesty again, but with some length; not so much by way of defence or answer, which yet, I know, your majesty would always graciously admit; as to shew, that I have, as I ought, weighed every word of your majesty's letter.
First, I do acknowledge, that this match of Sir John Villiers is magnum in parvo in both senses, that your majesty speaketh. But your majesty perceiveth well, that I took it to be in a farther degree, majus in parvo, in respect of your service. But since your majesty biddeth me to confide upon your act of empire, I have done. For, as the Scripture saith, to God all
(a) This letter appears, from the indorsement of the king's answer to it, to have been written at Gorhambury, July 25, 1617. That printed with this date in his Works, should be August 2, 1617, as I find by the original draught of it.
things are possible; so certainly to wise kings much is possible. But for that second sense, that your majesty speaketh of, magnum in parvo, in respect of the stir; albeit it being but a most lawful and ordinary thing, I most humbly pray your majesty to pardon me, if I signify to you, that we here take the loud and vocal, and as I may call it, streperous carriage to have been far more on the other side, which indeed is inconvenient, rather than the thing itself.
Now for the manner of my affection to my lord of Buckingham, for whom I would spend my life, and that which is to me more, the cares of my life; I must humbly confess, that it was in this a little parent-like, this being no other term, than his lordship hath heretofore vouchsafed to my counsels; but in truth, and it please your majesty, without any grain of disesteem for his lordship's discretion. For I know him to be naturally a wise man, of a sound and staid wit, as I ever said unto your majesty. And again, I know he hath the best tutor in Europe. But yet I was afraid, that the height of his fortune might make him too secure; and as the proverb is, a looker-on sometimes seeth more than a gamester.
For the particular part of a true friend, which your majesty witnesseth, that the earl hath lately performed towards me, in palliating some errors of mine; it is no new thing with me to be more and more bound to his lordship; and I am most humbly to thank, whatsoever it was, both your majesty and him: knowing well, that I may, and do commit many errors, and must depend upon your majesty's gracious countenance and favour for them, and shall have need of such a friend near your majesty. For I am not so ignorant of mine own case, but that I know I am come in with as strong an envy of some particulars, as with the love of the general.
For my opposition to this business, which, it seemeth, hath been informed your majesty, I think it was meant, if it be not a thing merely feigned, and without truth or ground, of one of these two things; for I will dissemble nothing with your majesty. It is