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such like speeches, so strange, as I should lose myself in it, but that I have cast off the care of it. My conceit is, that I am the least part of mine own matter. But her majesty would have a delay, and yet would not bear it herself. Therefore she giveth no way to me, and she perceiveth her council giveth no way to others; and so it sticketh as she would have it. But what the secret of it is oculus aquila non penetravit. My lord* continueth on kindly and wisely a course, Essex, worthy to obtain a better effect than a delay, which to me is the most unwelcome condition.
Now to return to you the part of a brother, and to render you the like kindness, advise you, whether it were not a good time to set in strongly with the queen to draw her to honour your travels. For in the course I am like to take, it will be a great and necessary stay to me, besides the natural comfort I shall receive. And if you will have me deal with my lord of Essex, or otherwise break it by mean to the queen, as that, which shall give me full contentment, I will do it as effectually, and with as much good discretion, as I can. Wherein if you aid me with your direction, I shall observe it. This as I did ever account it sure and certain to be accomplished, in case myself had been placed, and therefore deferred it till then, as to the proper opportunity; so now that I see such delay in mine own placing, I wish ex animo it should not expect.
I pray you let me know what mine uncle Killigrew will do; (a) for I must be more careful of my credit than ever, since I receive so little thence where I deserved best. And, to be plain with you, I mean even to make the best of those small things I have, with as much expedition, as may be without loss; and so sing a mass of requiem, I hope, abroad. For I know her majesty's nature, that she neither careth though the whole surname of Bacons travelled, nor of the Cecils neither.
(a) Mr. Antony Bacon had written to Sir Henry Killigrew on the 14th of January, 159, to desire the loan of two hundred pounds for six months. Vol. IV. fol. 4.
I have here an idle pen or two, specially one, that
From my lodging at Twickenham-
Letter of Mr. FRANCIS BACON to Sir ROBERT CECIL,* a copy of which was sent with the preceding to Mr. ANTONY BACON.
YOUR honour may remember, that upon relation of
It may please your honour to deliver to her majesty, first, that it is an exceeding grief to me, that any not motion (for it was not a motion) but mention, that should come from me, should offend her majesty, whom for these one-and-twenty years (for so long it is, that I kissed her majesty's hands upon my journey into France) I have used the best of my wits to please.
Next, mine answer standing upon two points, the one, that this mention of travel to my lord of Essex was no present motion, suit, or request; but casting the worst of my fortune with an honourable friend, that had long used me privately, I told his lordship of this purpose of mine to travel, accompanying it with these very words, that upon her majesty's rejecting me with such circumstance, though my heart might be good, yet mine eyes would be sore, that I should take no pleasure to look upon my friends; for that I was not an impudent man, that could face out a disgrace; and that I hoped her majesty would not be offended, that, not able to endure the sun, I fled into the shade. The other, that it was more than this; for I did expressly and particularly (for so much wit God then lent me) by way of caveat restrain my lord's good affection, that he should in no wise utter or mention this matter till her majesty' had made a solicitor: wherewith (now since my looking upon your letter) I did in a dutiful manner challenge my lord, who very honourably acknowledged it, seeing he did it for the best: and therefore I leave his lordship to answer for himself. All this my lord of Essex can testify to be true; and I report me to yourself, whether at the first, when I desired deliberation to answer, yet nevertheless said, I would to you privately declare what had passed, I said not in effect so much. The conclusion shall be, that wheresoever God and her majesty shall appoint me to live, I shall truly pray for her majesty's preservation and felicity. And so I humbly commend me to
Your poor kinsman to do you service,
Indorsed, January, 1594.
(a) The Speeches drawn up by Mr. FRANCIS BACON for the Earl of ESSEX in a device (b) exhibited by his lordship before Queen ELIZABETH, on the anniversary of her accession to the throne, November 17, 1595.
THE SQUIRE'S SPEECH.
Most excellent and most glorious queen, give me leave, I beseech your majesty, to offer my master's complaint and petition; complaint, that coming hi
(a) Bishop Gibson's papers, vol. V. No. 118.
(b) An account of this device, which was much applauded, is given by Mr. Rowland Whyte to Sir Robert Sydney, in a letter dated at London, Saturday the 22d of November, 1595, and printed in the Letters and Memorials of State of the Sydney family, vol. I. p. 362. According to this letter, the earl of Essex, some considerable time before he came himself into the tilt-yard, sent his page with some speech to the queen, who returned with her majesty's glove; and when his lordship came himself, he was met by an old hermit, a secretary of state, a brave soldier, and an esquire. The first presented him with a book of meditations; the second with political discourses; the third with orations of bravely fought battles; the fourth was his own follower, to whom the other three imparted much of their purpose before the earl came in. "Another," adds Mr. Whyte, "devised with him, persuading him to this and that course of life,
according to their inclinations. Comes into the "tilt-yard, un"thought upon, the ordinary post-boy of London, a ragged villain, "all bemired, upon a poor lean jade, galloping and blowing for life, "and delivered the secretary a packet of letters, which he presently offered my lord of Essex. And with this dumb shew our (6 eyes were fed for that time. In the after-supper, before the queen, they first delivered a well-penned speech to move this "worthy knight to leave his following of love, and to betake him to "heavenly meditation; the secretary's all tending to have him fol"low matters of state; the soldier's persuading him to the war: but "the squire answered them all, and concluded with an excellent, "but too plain, English, that this knight would never forsake his "mistress's love; whose virtue made all his thoughts divine; whose "wisdom taught him all true policy; whose beauty and worth were 66 at all times able to make him fit to command armies. He shewed "all the defects and imperfections of all their times; and therefore "thought his course of life to be best in serving his mistress." Mr. Whyte then mentions, that the part of the old hermit was performed
ther to your majesty's most happy day, he is tormented with the importunity of a melancholy dreaming hermit, a mutinous brain-sick soldier, and a busy, tedious secretary. His petition is, that he may be as free as the rest; and, at least, whilst he is here, troubled with nothing but with care how to please and honour you.
THE HERMIT'S SPEECH IN THE PRESENCE.
THOUGH Our ends be diverse, and therefore may be one more just than another; yet the complaint of this Squire is general, and therefore alike unjust against us all. Albeit he is angry, that we offer ourselves to his master uncalled, and forgets we come not of ourselves, but as the messengers of self-love, from whom, all that comes should be well taken. He saith, when we come, we are importunate. If he mean, that we err in form, we have that of his master, who being a lover, useth no other form of soliciting. If he will charge us to err in matter, I for my part will presently prove, that I persuade him to nothing but for his own good. For I wish him to leave turning over the book of fortune, which is but a play for children; when there be so many books of truth and knowledge, better worthy the revolving; and not fix his view only upon a picture in a little table, when there be so many tables of histories, yea to life, excellent to behold and admire. Whether he believe me or no, there is no prison to the prison of the thoughts, which are free under the greatest tyrants. Shall any man make his conceit, as an anchorite, mured up with the compass of one beauty or
by him, who at Cambridge played that of Giraldi; that Morley acted the secretary, and that the soldier was represented by him who acted the pedant, and that Mr. Tobie Matthew was the squire. "The world," says Mr. Whyte, "makes many untrue constructions "of these speeches, comparing the hermit and the secretary to "two of the lords; and the soldier to Sir Roger Williams. But "the queen said, that if she had thought there had been so much "said of her, she would not have been there that night; and so went "to bed."