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towards me, there is much more in my present which your sacred hand hath been so oft for new misery than in my past services; save that the ornaments and additions. Unto this degree of same your majesty's goodness, that may give compassion, I hope God above (of whose mercy relief to the one, may give value to the other. towards me, both in my prosperity, and adversity,
And, indeed, if it may please your majesty, I have had great testimonies and pledges, though this theme of my misery is so plentiful, as it need mine own manifold and wretched unthankfulness not be coupled with any thing else. I have been might have averted them) will dispose your somebody, by your majesty's singular and unde- princely heart, already prepared to all piety. And served favour, even the prime officer of your king- why should I not think, but that thrice noble dom. Your majesty's arm hath been often over prince, who would have pulled me out of the fire mine in council, when you presided at the table, of a sentence, will help to pull me (if I may use so near I was. I have borne your majesty's image that homely phrase) out of the mire of an abject in metal, much more in heart. I was never, in and sordid condition in my last days? And that nineteen years' service, chidden by your majesty, excellent favourite of yours (the goodness of but, contrariwise, often overjoyed, when your whose nature contendeth with the greatness of his majesty would sometimes say; "I was a good fortune, and who counteth it a prize, a second husband for you, though none for myself;" some-prize, to be a good friend, after that prize which times, 6 That I had a way to deal in business, he carrieth to be a good servant) will kiss your 6 suavibus modis,' which was the way which was hands with joy, for any work of piety you shall most according to your own heart;" and other do for me? And as all commiserating persons most gracious speeches of affection and trust, (specially such as find their hearts void of malice) which I feed on till this day. But why should I are apt to think, that all men pity them; I assure speak of these things, which are now vanished, myself, that the lords of the council (who out of but only the better to express my downfall. their wisdom and nobleness cannot but be sensible
For now it is thus with me; I am a year and a of human events) will, in this way which I go half old in misery, though (I must ever acknow- for the relief of my estate, further and advance ledge) not without some mixture of your majesty's your majesty's goodness towards me. For there grace and mercy. For I do not think it possible, is a kind of fraternity between great men that are, that any you once loved should be totally mise- and those that have been, being but the several rable. My own means, through mine own impro- tenses of one verb; nay, I do farther presume, vidence, are poor and weak, little better than my that both Houses of Parliament will love their father left me.
The poor things which I have justice the better if it end not in my ruin. For I had from your majesty, are either in question, or have been often told by many of my lords, (as it at courtesy: my dignities remain marks of your were, in excusing the severity of the sentence,) past favour, but yet burdens withal of my present that they knew they left me in good hands. And fortune. The poor remnants which I had of my your majesty knoweth well, I have been all my former fortunes, in plate or jewels, I have spread life long acceptable to those assemblies, not by upon poor men, unto whom I owed, scarce leaving flattery, but by moderation, and by honest expressmyself bread. So as, to conclude, I must pour ing of a desire to have all things go fairly and out my misery before your majesty, so far as to well. say, “ Si deseris tu, perimus.”
But (if it may please your majesty) for saints, But as I can offer to your majesty's compas- I shall give them reverence, but no adoration. sion, little arising from myself to move you, My address is to your majesty, the fountain of except it be my extreme misery, which I have goodness: your majesty shall, by the grace of truly laid open; so looking up to your majesty God, not feel that in gift, which I shall extremely yourself, I should think I committed Cain's fault, feel in help; for my desires are moderate, and my if I should despair : your majesty is a king, whose courses measured to a life orderly and reserved ; heart is as unscrutable, for secret motions of hoping still to do your majesty honour in my way. goodness, as for depth of wisdom. You are cre- Only I most humbly beseech your majesty, to ator-like, factive, and not destructive; you are a give me leave to conclude with those words which prince in whom I have ever noted an aversion necessity speaketh ; help me, dear sovereign lord against any thing that savoured of a hard heart; and master, and pity me so far, as I, that have as, on the other side, your princely eye was wont borne a bag, be not now, in my age, forced in to meet with any motion that was made on the re- effect, to bear a wallet; nor I, that desire to live lieving part. Therefore, as one that hath had happi- to study, may not be driven to study to live. I ness to know your majesty near hand I have (most most humbly crave pardon of a long letter, after a gracious sovereign) faith enough for a miracle, long silence. God of heaven ever bless, preserve, much more for a grace: that your majesty will and prosper your majesty. not suffer your poor creature to be utterly defaced, Your majesty's poor ancient servan yand beadsnor blot that name quite out of your book, upon man,
FR. ST. ALBAN. VOL. III.--3
SIR FRANCIS BACON, THE KING'S ATTORNEY, RE
offenders did none of them TURNED WITH POSTILS, OF THE KING'S OWN
make a clear confession. HAND.
That the great downfall of so IT MAY PLEASE YOUR MOST EXCELLENT MAJESTY,
great persons carrieth, in itYour majesty hath put upon me a work of pro
self, a heavy punishment, vidence in this great cause, which is to break and
and a kind of civil death, distinguish future events into present cases, and
although their lives should
not be taken. so present them to your royal judgment, that in this action, which hath been carried with so great All which may satisfy honour, for sparing their prudence, justice, and clemency, there may be lives. (for that which remaineth) as little surprise as is But, if your majesty's mercy should extend to possible, but that things duly foreseen may have the first degree, which is the highest, of sparing their remedies and directions in readiness; where the stage and the trial; then three things are to in I cannot forget what the poet Martial saith ; be considered. "O! quantum est subitis cassibus ingenium!" REX. This ar- First, That they make such signifying, that accident is many times more
ticle cannot a submission or deprecation, subtle than foresight, and overreacheth expecta
be mended in as they prostrate themselves, tion: and, besides, I know very well the mean
and all that they have, at your ness of my own judgment, in comprehending or
majesty's feet, imploring your forecasting what may follow.
mercy: It was your majesty's pleasure also, that I
Secondly, That your mashould couple the suppositions with my opinion
jesty, in your own wisdom, do in every of them, which is a harder task; but
advise what course you will yet your majesty's commandment requireth my
take, for the utter extinguishobedience, and your trust giveth ine assurance.
ing of all hope of resuscitating
of their fortunes and favour; I will put the In this case, it seemeth your
whereof if there should be the which I majesty will have a new con
least conceit, it will leave in wish; that So- sult. The points whereof will
men a great deal of envy and should be (1) Whether your majesty
discontent. make a clear con- will stay the trial, and so save
And, lastly, Whether your fession of his of- them both from the stage, and
majesty will not suffer it to be fences, before he that public ignominy. Or (2)
thought abroad, that there is a be produced to Whether you will (or may
cause of farther examination of trial. fitly by law) have the trial
Somerset, concerning matters REX. I say with proceed, and stay or reprieve
of estate, after he shall begin Apollo, “Me- the judgment, which saveth
once to be a confessant; and dia tutius the lands from forfeiture, and
so make as well a politic itur," if it may the blood from corruption. Or
ground, as a ground of clestand with (3) Whether you will have
mency, for farther stay. law; and if it both trial and judgment pro
And for the second degree of proceeding to cannot, when ceed, and save the blood only, trial, and staying judgment, I must better inform I shall hear not from corrupting, but from
myself by precedents, and advise with my lord that he con- spilling.
chancellor. fesseth, I am
The second In this case, first, I suppose to make choice of the first, or
case is, if that your majesty will not think of the last.
fall out which is any stay of judgment, but that
likest (as things the public process of justice These be the depths of your majesty's mercy stand, and which pass on. which I may not enter into; but for honour and weexpect) which Secondly, for your mercy to reputation, they have these grounds:
is, that the lady be extended to both, for pardon
confess: and that of their execution, I have That the blood of Overbury is Somerset him- partly touched, in the consi
already revenged by divers self plead not derations applied to the foriner executions.
guilty, and be case; whereunto may be addThat confession and penitency found guilty. ed, that as there is ground of
are the footstools of mercy, REX. If stay of mercy for her, upon her peni adding this circumstance judgment can tency and free confession, and likewise, that the former stand with the will be much more upon his
law, I would finding guilty, because the be very sorry seen (as I conceive it) that even wish it malice on his part will be should happen; there should be any rejecting in this case; thought the deeper source of but, it is a future of the verdict, or any respiting in all the rest the offence; so there will be contingent, that of the judgment of the acquitthis article ground for mercy, on his part, is, if the peers tal; so, on the other side, this
be upon the nature of the proof, should acquit case requireth, that because mended. because it rests chiefly upon him, and find there be many high and heni
presumptions. For, certainly, him not guilty. ous offences (though not capithere may be an evidence so
tal,) for which he may be balanced, as it may have suffi
questioned in the Star Chamcient matter for the conscience REX. This is so ber, or otherwise, that there of the peers to convict him, also.
be some touch of that in geneand yet leave sufficient matter
ral, at the conclusion, by my in the conscience of a king,
Lord Steward of England. upon the same evidence, to
And, that, therefore, he be repardon his life; because the
manded to the Tower, as close peers are astringed by neces
prisoner. sity, either to acquit or condemn; but grace is free. And For matter of examination, or other proceedfor my part, I think the evi- ings, my lord chancellor, with my advice, hath dence in this present case will set down be of such a nature.
Tomorrow, being Monday, for the re-examinaThirdly, It shall be my care tion of the lady. so to moderate the manner of Wednesday next, for the meeting of the judges, charging him, as it might concerning the evidence. make him not odious beyond Thursday, for the examination of Somerset the extent of mercy.
himself, according to your majesty's instructions.
Which three parts, when they shall be perREX. That dan
Lastly, all these points of ger is well to mercy and favour, are to be formed, I will give your majesty advertisement be foreseen, understood with this limita- with speed, and in the mean time be glad to
receive from your majesty (whom it is my part lest he upon tion, if he do not, by his con
to inform truly) such directions, or significations the one part temptuous and insolent carcommit unpar- riage at the bar, make himself
of your pleasure, as this advertisement may donable errors, incapable and unworthy of induce, and that with speed, because the time
cometh on. and I on the them.
Well remembering who is the per
son, whom your majesty admitted to this secret; other part
I have sent this letter open unto him, that he nish him in
may take your majesty's times to report it, or the spirit of
show it unto you, assuring myself that nothing is
more firm than his trust, tried to your majesty's revenge.
commandments; The third case In this case, I should think
Your majesty's most humble and most is, if he should fit, that, as in public, both my
bounden subject and servant. stand mute, self and chiefly my lord chan
April 28, 1616. and will not cellor, (sitting then as Lord plead, whereof Steward of England) should your majesty dehort and deter him from that knoweth there desperation; so, nevertheless, hath been that as much should be done SIR FRANCIS BACON, THE KING'S ATTORNEY. secret for him, as was done for Wes
GENERAL, TO THE MASTER OF THE HORSE, UPON
THE SENDING OF HIS BILL FOR VISCOUNT, SC. question. ton, which was to adjourn the
court for some days, upon a Sir,
I send you the bill for his majesty's signature, REX. This ar- have time to turn from that reformed according to his majesty's amendments,
ticle cannot be mind of destroying himself; both in the two places (which I assure you, were amended.
during which time your ma- altered with great judgment) and in the third jesty's farther pleasure may be place, which his majesty termed a question only. known.
But he is an idle body, that thinketh his majesty The fourth
In this case, the lord stew- asketh an idle question; and therefore his majesty's is, that, ard must be provided what to questions are to be answered, by taking away the which I should do. For, as it hath been never cause of the question, and not by replying.
For the name, his majesty's will is a law in | but you may think your private fortunes establishthose things; and to speak the truth, it is a well-ed; and therefore it is now time, that you should sounding, and noble name, both here and abroad : refer your actions to the good of your sovereign, and being your proper name, I will take it for a and your country. It is the life of an ox or beast good sign, that you shall give honour to your always to eat, and never exercise ; but men are dignity, and not your dignity to you. Therefore borr (and especially Christian men) not to cram I have made it Viscount Villiers, and for your in their fortunes, but to exercise their virtues; and barony, I will keep it for an earldom : for though yet the other hath been unworthy, and (thanks be the other had been more orderly, yet that is as to God) sometimes unlucky hurnour of great perusual, and both alike good in law.
sons in our times. Neither will your future forFor Roper's place, I would have it by all tune be the farther off; for assure yourself, that means despatched; and therefore I marvel it fortune is of a woman's nature, and will sooner lingereth. It were no good manners, to take the follow by slighting, than by too much wooing. business out of my lord treasurer's hands, and And in this dedication of yourself to the public, I therefore I purpose to write to his lordship, if I recommend unto you principally, that which I hear not from him first, by Mr. Deckome; but if think, was never done since I was born; and I hear of any delay, you will give me leave which, because it is not done, hath bred almost a (especially since the king named me) to deal with wilderness and solitude in the king's service; Šir Joseph Roper myself; for neither I, nor my which is, that you countenance, and encourage, lord treasurers can deserve any great thanks in and advance able men, in all kinds, degrees, and this business of yours, considering the king hath professions. For in the time of the Cecils, the spoken to Sir Joseph Roper, and he hath promised; father and the son, able men were by design and and, besides, the thing itself is so reasonable, as it of purpose suppressed : and though, of late, choice ought to be as soon done as said. I am now gotten goeth better, both in church and commonwealth, into the country to my house, where I have some yet money and turn-serving, and cunning canlittle liberty, to think of that I would think of, and vasses and importunity, prevaileth too much. not of that which other men hourly break their And in places of moment, rather make able and head withal, as it was at London. Upon this honest inen yours, than advance those that are otheryou may conclude, that most of my thoughts are wise, because they are yours. As for cunning and to his majesty, and then you cannot be far off. corrupt men, you must (I know) sometimes use God ever keep you, and prosper you: I rest them, but keep them at a distance; and let it always,
appear rather, that you make use of them, than Your true and most dutiful servant. that they lead you. Above all depend wholly The 5th of August, one of the happiest days.
(next unto God) upon the king, and be ruled (as hitherto you have been) by his instructions, for that is best for yourself. For the king's care and
thoughts for you are according to the thoughts of SIR FRANCIS BACON TO SIR GEORGE VILLIERS, a great king; whereas your thoughts concerning UPON THIE SENDING HIS PATENT FOR VISCOUNT yourself are, and ought to be, according to the
thoughts of a modest man. But let me not weary SIR,
you: the sum is, that you think goodness the best I have sent you now your patent, creation of part of greatness, and that you remember whence Lord Bletchly of Bletchly, and of Viscount Villiers. your rising comes, and make return accordingly. Bletchly is your own, and I liked the sound of God keep you. the name better than whaddon; but the name
Aug. 12, 1616. will be hid, for you will be called Viscount Villiers. I have put them in a patent, after the manner of the patent for earls, where baronies are Joined; but the chief reason was, because I would SIR FRANCIS BACON TO THE KING, ABOUT A CERavoid double prefaces, which had not been fit; nevertheless, the ceremony of robing, and other- IT MAY PLEASE YOUR EXCELLENT MAJESTY, wise, must be double.
I send your majesty enclosed, my Lord Coke's And now, because I am in the country, I will answers, I will not call them rescripts, much less send you some of my country fruits, which with oracles. They are of his own hand, and offered me are good meditations; which, when I am in to me (as they are) in writing, not required by me the city, are choked with business.
to have them set down in writing, though I am After that the king shall have watered your glad of it, for my own discharge. I thought it new dignities, with the bounty of the lands which my duty, as soon as I received them, instantly to he intends you, and that some other things con- send them to your majesty, and forbear, for the cerning your means, which are now likewise in present, to speak farther of them. I, for my part, iotention, shall be settled upon you, I do not see, ! (though this Moscovia weather be a little too hara
VILLIERS TO BE SIGNED.
TIFICATE OF MY LORD COKE'S.
SIR FRANCIS BACON TO MR. TOBY MATTIIEWS.
for my constitution,) was ready to have waited | may say to your lordship, in the confidence of upon your majesty this day, all respects set aside; your poor kinsman, and a man by you advanced, but
my lord treasurer, in respect of the season, sin idem fer opem qui spem dedisti :" for I am and much other business, was willing to save me. sure, it was not possible for a man living to have I will only conclude, touching these papers, with received from another more significant and coma text divided; I cannot say. Oportuit hæc fieri,” fortable words of hope: your lordship being but I may say, “ Finis autern nondum." God pleased to tell me, during the course of my last preserve your majesty.
service, that you would raise me, and that, when Your majesty's most humble and you are resolved to raise a man, you were more care
devoted subject and servant. ful of him than himself, and that what you had done Feb. 14, at 12 o'clock.
for me in my carriage, was a benefit for me, but I humbly pray your majesty, to keep the papers of no use to your lordship; and, therefore, I might safe.
assure myself, you would not leave me there, with many like speeches; which I know too well my duty to take any other hold of, than the hold of a thankful remembrance: and I know, and all the
world knoweth, that your lordship is no dealer of MR. MATTHEWS,
holy water, but noble and real ; and on my part, Do not think me forgetful, or altered towards
on sure ground, that I have committed nothing you: but if I should say, I could do you any good,
that may deserve any alteration; and if I cannot I should make my power more than it is. I do observe you as I would, your lordship will impute fear that which I am right sorry for, that you better, when I am once settled.
it to my want of experience, which I shall gather grow more impatient and busy than at first, which
And therefore my hope is, your lordship will makes me exceedingly fear the issue of that which seemeth not to stand at a stay. I myself am out
finish a good work, and consider, that time of doubt, that you have been miserably abused, groweth precious, and that I am now - vergenti
bus annis :" and although I know your fortuine is when you were first seduced; and that which I
not to want a hundred such as I am, yet I shall be take in compassion, others may take in severity. I pray God, that understands us all better than we
ever ready to give you my best and first fruits, understand one another, continue you, as I hope
and to supply, as much as in me lieth, a worthi
ness by thankfulness. he will, at least, within the bounds of loyalty to
FR. BACON. his majesty, and natural piety to your country. And I entreat you much, to meditate sometimes upon the effect of superstition in this last powdertreason, fit to be tabled and pictured in the chambers of meditation, as another hell above the ground; and well justifying the censure of the IT MAY PLEASE YOUR MOST EXCELLENT MAJESTY, heathen, that “Superstition is far worse than
I dare not presume any more to reply upon your Atheism,” by how much it is less evil to have no majesty, but reserve my defence till I attend your good opinion of God at all, than such as are majesty at your happy retnrn, when I hope verily impious towards his divine majesty and goodness. to approve myself not only a true servant to your Good Mr. Matthews, receive yourself back from majesty, but a true friend to my Lord of Buckingthese courses of perdition. Willing to have written ham; and for the times also, I hope to give your a great deal more, I continue
majesty a good account, though distance of place Your, etc.
may obscure them. But there is one part of your FR. Bacon.
majesty's letter, that I could be sorry to take time to answer; which is, that your majesty conceives, that whereas I wrote that the height of my lord's fortune might make him secure, I mean, that he was turned proud, or unknowing of himself.
Surely, the opinion I have ever had of my lord IT MAY PLEASE YOUR GOOD LORDSHIP,
(whereof your majesty is best witness) is far from I am not ignorant how mean a thing I stand for, that. But my meaning was plain and simple, in desiring to come into the solicitor's place : for that his lordship might, through his great fortune, I know well, it is not the thing it hath been, time be the less apt to cast and foresee the unfaithfulhaving wrought an alteration, both in the profes-ness of friends, and the malignity of enemies, and sion, and in that special place. Yet, because I accidents of times. Which is a judgment (your think it will increase my practice, and that it may majesty knoweth better than I) that the best ausatisfy my friends, and because I have been voiced thors make of the best, and best tempered spirits to it, I would be glad it were done. Wherein Il- ut sunt res humanæ ;'' insomuch as Guicci.
LORD CHANCELLOR BACON TO THE KING.
SIR FRANCIS BACON TO THE EARL OF SALIS