'Many of the letters in this collection,' says Fenn (iii. 261, Note 1), 'mention the disputes between the Duke of Suffolk and Sir John Fastolf concerning different manors and estates.' This remark is made with reference to the complaints against Suffolk in No. 309 preceding. Only two of these letters have been seen by the present editor.
SIR JOHN FASTOLF TO JOHN PASTON.
Sends by his servant an instruction to be engrossed, corrected by Paston's advice, and a remembrance concerning Walsingham, which I hope by your help 'shall be corryged.' Certain friends of yours and mine have been here, and desire me to write to you 'for your friendship and good will, passing all other men's.'
[The date of this letter is quite uncertain, but it was probably written some time during those later years of his life when Sir John Fastolf resided at Caister. The signature, like some others during that period, is not in Fastolf's own hand.]
[Footnote 65.2: [From MS. Phillipps, 9735, No. 239.]]
LORD CROMWELL TO JOHN PASTON[66.1]
_To my right trusty ffrend, John Paston, Squier._
[Sidenote: Before 1456]
Trusty and welbeloved frend, I grete you wele. And for as much as hit is don me to understande that there is a greet straungenesse betwix my right trusty frend John Radcliff and you, withoute any matier or cause of substaunce, as I am lerned; wherfore, in as much as I love you wele bothe, I am not content hit shulde so be.
Praying you hertly to forbere the said straungenesse on your partie to suche tyme as I speke with you next my self, leting you wite I have wreten to him to do the same; and that ye faile not herof, as I may do any thing for you herafter. And our Lorde have you in His keping.
Wretin at London, the x. day of Fevrier.
[Footnote 66.1: [From Fenn, ii. 290.] This letter was attributed by Fenn to Humphrey Bourchier, who was created Lord Cromwell in the first year of Edward IV., and it was accordingly placed by him in that reign. The signature, however, of which Fenn gives a facsimile, is not that of Humphrey Bourchier, Lord Cromwell, but of Ralph, Lord Cromwell, who died on the 4th January 1456.]
BOTONER TO JOHN PASTON[66.2]
_To my maister, John Paston._
[Sidenote: 1456 / JAN. 6]
Please your maistershyp to wete that I had sent yow word of the god chiere that the persons ye wote off had here uppon New Yeer Day, and how well they toke it, but W. Barker coude playnly enforme yow. And John Sadler of Ocle told me how they avaunted of it when he of Lynne came by hym at nyzt lyeng, that he had neider better chier, &c.
My maister demaundyth me sondry tymes when ye shall be here. I coude not sey till thys day be passed. William Geney shall be here to morn, so wold Jesus ye were her then. I asked licence to ryde yn to my contree, and my maistr dyd not graunt it; he seyd hys wille was for to make, &c.
Y aunsuerd it fyt not me to know it. God gefe hym grace of holsom councell, and of a gode disposicion; _non est opus unius diei, nec unius septimanae_.
My Lord Bedford wylle was made yn so bryeff and generall termys, that yn to thys day by the space of xx. yeer can neider hafe ende, but all wey new to constrew and oppynable; so a generallte shall ne may be so gode as a particuler declaracion.
I wryte blontly. I had foryete to hafe told yow Maister Fylongley meoved me to enforme my maister to hafe a generalle pease, so it myzt be worshypfull. Y hafe seyd no word, for I can not medle yn hygh maters that passyth my wyt; and therfor yff ye and W. Geney mete to gheders, ye know and can devyne best what ys to be doon. Our Lord be with yow.
Wryt hastly, vj. day Januar.
W. BOTONER, H.R.
[Footnote 66.2: [From Fenn, iii. 256.] By the reference to the Duke of Bedford's will as having been in dispute for twenty years, it would appear that this letter was written in the beginning of the year 1456. Bedford died at Rouen on the 14th September 1435.]
BOTONER TO JOHN PASTON[67.1]
Please yow to wete that my maister[67.2] yn allwyse wille that I ryde to Dedham to speke with Broke as well as wyth the stuard, and to gefe aunsuer to Broke yn whate wyse he wille depart for the reuersyn; he was ryd or I came home. And my maister wille comyn with yow for the moyens of a chauntuarye to be founded of the place ye wote off; y seyd hym such chargeable maters wold be doo betyme to know the certeyntee. And a greter lak ys yn hym, he taryeth so long to put all thynges of charge yn a sure wey; hyt ys for lake of sad councell to moove hym. And I most be at Castre by Thursday next; and I pray yow let me not be lete of my voyage yn to my contree, and I shall kepe Yorkesshyre with Spyrlyng, or such as shall ryde. The parson[68.1] with yow shall do well sort my maister evidences, and that ys one the grettist thyng nedefull for the seurtee of hys lyfelode; and so it wold be remembred hym, for now all thyng ys sett at appoynt, how it standyth with hys debtys and officers, except that mater of grettist charge, and also to provyde for the approwement of hys lyfelode.
And, syr, yff ye thynke to done (_think it to be done_), to meofe Cler of the acre lond, but gefe hym no credence yn the contrarye, for I shall preffe it trewe yn my seyng for onye man lyvyng. He that wille dysseyve hys servaunt yn maryage for so litell a thyng, he wold disseyve another frende yn a gretter thyng. He sekyth occasyons and querell to colour hys brekyng off.
[Footnote 67.1: [From Paston MSS., B.M.] From the desire expressed by the writer in this letter to visit his own country, we may refer it to the same period as the last.]
[Footnote 67.2: Sir John Fastolf.]
[Footnote 68.1: Sir Thomas Howes.]
BOTONER TO JOHN PASTON[68.2]
[Sidenote: About 1456]
Please yow to wete that as for ease of my maisters[68.3] tenaunts in Dedham, yff a lettre were devysed by Maister Geney yn my maister name or youres to Thomas Hygham, one of the justices of pease in Suffolk that toke the veredyt, he myzt do grete ease, as yn disavowyng of it or yn wythdrawyng it owte of the bokes. Robert Dene, clerk of the pese, seyth that lete my maister councell avise that whych he may do undammaged hymsylf, and he wille with all hys hert. John Bokkyng ys well remembred that my maister caused the seyd Thomas Hygham, by Maister Geney mocion, to be one of the justice of pease, and one Jermyn of Suffolk also. Whych both Hygham and Jermyn hath suffred my maister hafe, savyng your reverence, tweyn shrewde tornys seth that they mizt hafe letted, as now the seyd Thomas Hygham myzt hafe letted the presentment or a moderated othyrwyse, &c.
At reverence of God, beyth as sone as ye may with my maister to ease hys spyryttes. He questioneth and desputyth with hys servauntes here, and wolle not be aunsuerd ne satisfyed som tyme but after hys wylfulnesse, for hyt suffysyth not our simple wyttes to appease hys soule; but when he spekyth wyth Maister Zelverton, yow, or wyth William Geney and suche othyrs as be auctorised yn the law, and wyth haboundance of godes, he ys content and haldeth hym pleased wyth your aunsuers and mocions, as reson ys that he be. So wold Jesus, one of yow iij., or som suche othyr yn your stede, myzt hang at hys gyrdyll dayly to aunsuer hys materes.
I had but litille thyng to done when I scrybled thys bille.
[Footnote 68.2: [From Paston MSS., B.M.] There is no address to this letter, but it seems to have been intended for John Paston.
The exact time when it was written is uncertain, but we have placed it after the last on account of the reference to Deddam.