WILLIAM BOTONER TO JOHN PASTON[323.3]
_To my gode maister, John Paston, Escuier, in Norwich, and yn hys absence, to John Berney, at Caister, Squyer._
[Sidenote: 1454 / JULY 5]
Worshypfull Sirs, I recomaund me to yow. Lyke yow wete that as to the waraunts and copes that ye remembred to be gheten owt, it ys laboured for, &c.
And as to the assisse, it shall hald at Norwych, the Monday next com fortendayes.
The Duc of York, the Lord Cromewell, and othyr Lordys of the North that were wyth my seyd Lord York, comen hedre by Monday next, as it ys credybly seyd. The Lordys that be appoynted to kepe the see maken hem redye yn all haste; and the Tresourer also, the Lord Wyltshyre[324.1]
for the west coost. And a stately vessell, only for the warre, ys made new at Brystow by the Mayr, called Sturmyn[324.2]. And the seyd toune with the west coosts wolle do her part, and [i.e. _if_] they may be supported or favoured.[324.3]
Mastere Pownyngs[324.4] hath day tille the next terme by a remayner.
Manye a gode man ys hert he hath.[325.1] God comfort hym in ryght!
And justice ys don dayly uppon thevys and malefactours, and people be glad that justice may precede.
The Lord Bourchier hath a gode renomee of hys wyse demenyng at Calis, but he ys not yhyt comen.
The Soudeours be more temperat then they were. Not ell[es] for lak of leyser, but our Lord kepe you.
Wryt at L. [London], the v. day of Jullet.
Gressam qwyts hym well yn your erandys doyng to me.
[Footnote 323.3: [From Fenn, i. 140.] The year in which this letter was written must be that of the mayoralty of Robert Sturmy at Bristol, as shown in p. 324, Note 2. It certainly could not be 1457, Fenn's date, as Lord Cromwell died in January 1456.]
[Footnote 324.1: James Butler, Earl of Wiltshire and Ormond. He was appointed Lord Treasurer of England on the 15th March 1455 (Patent, 33 Henry VI., p. 2, m. 20), but on the 29th May following the office was taken from him, and given to Henry, Viscount Bourchier (_Ib._ m. 12). But this letter, which is dated in July, cannot be in 1455; indeed, we have positive evidence that it is in 1454. How, then, are we to explain the manner in which Wiltshire is referred to above? It is just possible--though not likely, as Wiltshire was a Lancastrian--that his appointment may have been enrolled in the wrong year, and that he was really made Lord Treasurer on the 15th March 1454. A difference in punctuation will perhaps solve the difficulty best:-- 'The Lords that be appointed to keep the see maken hem ready yn all haste, and the Treasourer also: the Lord Wyltshyre for the west coast.' John Tiptoft, Earl of Worcester, is mentioned as Lord Treasurer on the 11th February 1454.--See _Rolls of Parl._ v. 238.]
[Footnote 324.2: The name was printed by Fenn 'St'myn',' and in the modern version on the opposite page, 'St. Myn.' Robert Sturmy was Mayor of Bristol in the year 1453-4. It was probably this very ship that was captured by the Genoese in 1457, of which disaster there is the following notice in the MS.
Calendars of Bristol:-- 'Mr. Robert Sturney [_alias_ Sturmey], who was Mayor in 1453, had this year a ship spoiled in the Mediterranean Sea by the Genoese, which ship had gotten much wealth as having been long forth. She had spices fit to be planted here in England, as was reported, but the men of Genoa in envy spoiled her. Which wrong, when King Henry understood, he arrested the Genoa merchants in London, seized their goods, and imprisoned their persons, until they gave security to make good the loss; so that they were charged with 6000 indebted to Mr.
Sturney.' --Seyer's _Memoirs of Bristol_, ii. 189.]
[Footnote 324.3: 'The said town,' it would appear, did 'do her part' on the occasion; for besides this ship fitted out by the Mayor, Bristol subscribed 150 to a loan raised by the Duke of York from the seaports for the protection of trade. This sum may appear insignificant for a flourishing seaport; but London itself only subscribed 300, and Southampton, which was the next largest contributor, only 100, while Norwich and Yarmouth contributed the latter amount between them.--Seyer's _Bristol_, ii. 188; see also _Rolls of Parl._ v. 245. We must remember, however, that these sums probably represent about fifteen times their value in modern currency. At all events, by comparison with other places, Botoner had no cause to be ashamed of his native town.]
[Footnote 324.4: Robert Poynings. --_See_ p. 154, Note 3.]
[Footnote 325.1: 'Many a good man's heart he hath.' --We should have thought this explanation unnecessary, but that Fenn, in his modern version, gives the following most extraordinary rendering:-- 'Many a good man is hurt (_that_) he hath.']
EDMUND, LORD GREY OF HASTINGS TO JOHN PASTON[325.2]
_To my trusty and wele belovid John Paston, Squyer, be this lettre delivered._
[Sidenote: 1454 / JULY 11]
Trusty and welebelovid frend, I comaund me to zow, certifying zow that and zour sustyr be not zit maried, y trust to God y know that where she may be maried to a gentylman of iii. C.  marc of lyvelod, the which is a grete gentylman born, and of gode blode; and yf ze think that y shall labore ony ferder therynne, y pray zow send me word by the bringer of this lettre, for y have spoke with the parties, and they have granted me that they wolle precede no ferder therynne tyll y speke with hem azen; and therefore, y pray zow, send me word in hast how that ze wylle be desposed therynne; and God have zow in hys kepyng. W[r]ettin at Ampthill, the xj. day of July last past.
By EDMOND GREY, LORD OF HASTYNGES, WAIFFORD, AND OF RUTHYN.
[Footnote 325.2: [From Fenn, iii. 214.] This letter is dated by a memorandum at the bottom of the original, in the handwriting of John Paston-- 'Liberat. per Will. Aleyn, valetum dicti domini xiiij. die Julii anno xxxij. H. vi.']
SIR JOHN FASTOLF TO THOMAS HOWYS[326.1]
_To my ryght trusty frende Sir Thomas Howys, Parson of Castelcombe._
[Sidenote: 1454 / JULY 12]
Ryght trusty frende, I grete you well, and wolle ye wete that I thynk it to greete merveylle of your trouth and wysdom that ye shuld haf, that ye hafe noysed me, and seyd to John Andreus at Yeppyswych, in presence of dyvers men, that ye have suffisaunt waraunts undre my lettre and sele to safe you harmlese, in case ye be condempned yn the somme this Andreus sewyth you for. And know for certeyn, there passed no such warauntis undre my sele; nothyr I comaunded you not for to labour ne do thyng that shuld be ayenst the law, nether unlawfully ayenst ryght and trouth. And therfor y ought not ne wolle not pay for yow. Wherfor I charge you sende me your warauntis and lettres or acomp of them, and of whoos hand wrytyng they ben; and whate evidences, instruccions and informacions ye had and by whom, as well as of my lerned councell as of othyrs. And also that ye comyn with my cosyn John Paston, &c., and take his gode avice whate remedie ys best, whethyr to sew an atteynt ayenst th'enquest a _decies tantum_ in your oune name or by the parlement; for y wolle do seke all the remedies that may be had ayenst the seyd Andreus. And kepe ye close and sure from hym in all maner wyse, for your oune welfare; for know ye for certeyn that Andreus wolle ley all the wayt and aspies of such as ye wene to take for your true frendys to arrest you; and then be ye as it were be thout remedie, for ye not be tyme to sende me the materes abofe specyfied.
Item, Robert Inglose hath spoke wyth me and hath offred me to by lond to satisfye my dewtee that lyeth in Rakhyth, and y am avysed to by it, if ye can send thedre som trusty man that can telle whate it ys worth cleerly, and off whome it ys halde, and also yf it be sure lyvelode, and your avice wythall; but beware that ye com not owt, God kepe you. Wryt at London in haste the xij. day of Julle, A. xxxij^do. Regni Regis Henrici VJ.
JOHN FASTOLF, ch'l'r.
[Footnote 326.1: [Add. MS. 34,888, f. 102.]]
JOHN PASTON TO LORD GREY[327.1]
_Dominus de Grey._
[Sidenote: 1454 / JULY 15]
Right worshipfull and my ryght gode Lord, I recomand me to yowr gode Lordship. And where as it pleasyd yowr Lordship to dyrecte yowr letter to me for amaryage for my por suster to a jantylman of yowr knowleth of CCC. marc lyflod, in cas she wer not maryd; wherfor I am bownd to do your Lordship servyse; forsothe, my Lord, she is not maryd, ne insurid to noman; ther is and hath be, dyvers tymys and late, comunycacion of seche maryages wyth dyvers jantylmen not determynyd as yett, and whedder the jantylman that yowr Lordchip menith of be on of hem or nay I dowth.
And wher as your seyd letter specyfyith that I shall send yow word whedder I thowght ye shuld labour ferther in the mater or nay, in that, my Lord, I dare not preswme to wryte so to yow wythowte I knew the gentylmans name,--notwythstandyng, my Lord, I shall take uppe on me, wyth the avyse of other of here frendys, that she shall nother be maryd ner inswryd to no creatwr, ne forther prosede in no seche mater befor the fest of the Assumpcion of owr Lady next comyng, dwryng whyche tyme yowr Lordship may send me, if itt please yow, certeyn informacion of the seyd gentylmanys name, and of the place and contrey where hys lyfflod lyth, and whedder he hath any chylder, and, after, I shall demene me in the mater as yowr Lordship shall be pleasyd; for in gode feyth, my Lord, it were to me grette joy that my seyd pore suster were, according to hier pore degre, marijd be yowr avyse, trustyng thanne that ye wold be here gode Lord.
Ryght wurchipfull and my ryght gode Lord, I beseche Almyghty God to have yow in His kepyng. Wrete att Norwych, the xv. day of Jull.
[Footnote 327.1: [From Fenn, iii. 216.] This letter is the answer to No. 250, originally printed from a copy in Paston's own handwriting, without signature.]
THOMAS PLAYTER TO JOHN PASTON[328.1]
_To my ryght reverent and worshipfull maister, John Paston, be this dylyverd at London, and ellys sent to hym to Norwic._