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_To the rite worshipful esqwyr, John Paston, be this presentid._

_Jesus, Maria, Johannes Baptista. Franciscus, cum Sanctis omnibus, assistant vobis vestris in laboribus. Amen._

[Sidenote: 1460 / OCT. 24]

Worschipful and most interely bitrustid mayster and specyal frend, after dute of al lowly recomendacyon, ze schal conceyve that I certefye zow for trewthe. I comonyd late with a worschipful and a wele namyd, a good thrifty man of this cuntre, whiche told me in secrete wyse that he herd Doctor Aleyn seyn after the Parlement of Covintre[242.3] that yf the Lords that tyme reynyng and now discessid myte haf standyn in governans, that Fortesku the justise, Doctor Moreton, Jon Heydon, Thorp and he, schuld be made for evir; and yf it turnyd to contrary wyse, it schuld growe to her fynal confusyon and uttyr destruccyon; for why, the parlyows [_perilous_] writing and the myschevous inditing was ymaginid, contrivid, and utterly concludid by her most vengeable labour, &c., and her most malicyows conspiracye ayens the innocent lords, knytis, gentilis, and comonys, and alle her issu perpetuel, &c. And as I wrote last to zour maysterschip the text of Jeremias c 8 _Vere mendacium operatus est stilus mendax scribarum_; it folwith in the same place, _Confusi sunt sapientes, perterriti et capti sunt; verbum Domini projecerunt, et sapientia nulla est in eis. Propterea dabo mulieres eorum exteris; agros eorum haeredibus alienis, &c._ I wolde myn Lord Chaunceler and my specyal Lord Erl, utinam Duke, of Warwyk, with al her trewe affinyte, schuld remembre this text, which is Holy Scripture, &c., as I wold do by for the Kyng and hise Lords at the Cros;[243.1] for the principil of this text hath be contynued in dayly experiens sithe bifore the Parlement of Bury;[243.2] but the conclusyon of this text came never zet to experiens, and that is gret rewthe. Consideret discretio vestra singulorum annorum curricula, et percipietis tunc perplurima exempla de dominorum fidelium atque communium morte satis injuriosa multiformiter lamentanda discurrendo per singula. Ex paucis scit discretio vestra perpendere plura, &c. Et ubi ego semel in ecclesia Pauli palam praedicavi hunc textum, _Non credas inimico tuo in aeternum_ (Ecc. 12), et quidam hujus regni doctor et episcopus, utinam non indignus, asseruit eundem textum Scripturae Sacrae non incorporatum, quid doctor Nicholaus de Lira super eundem textum dicit, contra audietis, _Non credas, &c._, id est, Nunquam credas ei quem probasti inimicum, &c. Sequitur in textu:--_Sicut aeramentum aeruginat malicia illius_, id est, rubiginem odii servat interius, licet contrarium ostendatur exterius. Ideo in textu sequitur:--_Etsi humiliatus vadat corvus_ [_curvus_], tibi magnam reverenciam exhibendo, _affirma, abice_ [_abjice_] _animum tuum ab illo, nullo modo credendo ei, et custodi te ab illo. Non statuas illum penes te_ (id est, ipsum tibi familiarem exhibendo); _ne conversus stet in loco suo_ [should be _tuo_] te supplantando; _et in novissimo agnoscas verba mea esse vera_, sed nimis tarde. Sequitur: _Quis miserebitur incantatori a serpente percusso_, &c.; et qui comitatur cum viro iniquo et obvolutus est in peccatis ejus? _Una hora tecum permanebit; si autem declinaveris non supportabit. In labiis suis indulcat inimicus, et in corde suo insidiatur, ut subvertat te in foveam. In oculis suis lacrimatur inimicus, et si invenerit tempus non saciabitur sanguine. Si incurrerint tibi mala [invenies] eum illic priorem_, &c. In finem rogo, videte textum et postillatores super eodem, ex quibus potestis plane considerare episcopum modernum aliquando Scripturam Sacram ignorare, &c.

Utinam dominorum fidelium provida discrecio amicorum dileccionem sapienter sic pensaret quod inimicorum dileccionem nequaquam sic amaret, ut inimicis mortalibus confidenciam exhiberet; quare ut prius sic replico Jesu Sirach sanum et salubre consilium, _Non credas inimico tuo in aeternum_. Sapienti, non insipienti scribo. Plura habeo vestrae reverentiae scribere quae jam non expedit calamo commendare. Uxor Johannis Berney de Redham jam infra triduum peperit filium, &c. Magistra mea uxor vestra sana est cum filiis vestris et filiabus ac tota familia.

Conventus noster inter caeteros habet statum vestrum specialissime recommendatum in missis ac orationibus, consuetisque suffragiis; et cum jam sitis in parliamento praesenti pro milite electo, uti vobis consulo verbis Pauli Apostoli, _Labora sicut bonus miles Jesu Christi_;[244.1]

et alibi, Job utendo verbis, _Militia super terram est vita hominis_ (Job 7). _Viriliter igitur agite et confortetur cor vestrum quia speratis in Domino_ (in Psalmo).[244.2] _Quis_, inquit Sapiens, _speravit in Domino et confusus est, et permansit in mandatis Dei et derelictus est?_[244.3] quasi diceret, nullus.

Ex Norwico feria sexta post festum Sancti Lucae Evangelistae.

[_Not Signed._]

[Footnote 242.2: [From Fenn, iii. 386.] This letter was clearly written after the battle of Northampton in 1460, by which the state of parties at the Parliament of Coventry in 1459 was exactly reversed.

With regard to this and other letters of Dr. Brackley, the original editor, Sir John Fenn, has expressed a misgiving that he may in some instances have misread the contractions used in the Latin words. This was certainly the case in the present letter, in which misreadings have been corrected, and some passages supplied from the MS.]

[Footnote 242.3: Held in December 1459.]

[Footnote 243.1: Paul's Cross.]

[Footnote 243.2: In 1447.]

[Footnote 244.1: 2 Tim. ii. 3.]

[Footnote 244.2: Psalm xxx. (xxxi.) 24.]

[Footnote 244.3: Eccles. ii. 11, 12 (v. 10 of our English version).]



_To my ryth welbelovyd brodyr, Clement Paston, for to delyver to hys brodyr Jon, in haste._

[Sidenote: 1460 / OCT. 29]

Ryth w[urshepfu]ll husbonde, I recomande me to yow. Plesyth yow to weet that I receyvyd a lettyr on Seynt Symondys evyn and J[w]d, that came frome Jon Paston,[245.2] in the wyche lettyr he wrot that ye desyryd that I scholde do Jon Paston or Thomas P[layter] looke in the gret standyng chyste in on of the gret canvas baggys whyche standyth ageyns the lokk, for the copys of the fals inqwest of ofys that was fownde in Northefolk, and for the kopy of the comyssyon that came to Jon Andrewys and Fylpot and Heydon, and othyr thyngys towchynge the same mater, I have do. Jon Paston sowte all iij. grete baggys in the seyd kofyr at ryth good leyser, and he can non swhyche fynde. Plesyth it yow to remembre ye sent me word in the fyrste lettyr that ye sent me, that ye wolde that Playter scholde asent hem up to yow to London, and I schewyd hym yowyr wryttyng howe that ye wrote to me ther in. I suppose be cawse he purposyd to come up to London hym selve hastely, he sent yow none answer ther of. Rychard Calle tolde me that alle swhyche thyngys were lefte with Hery Barbore at the Tempyle Gate when the last terme was doo, and soo I sent yow worde in a lettyr whyche was wretyn on the Twesday next aftyr Seynt Looke,[245.3] and ther in was an answer of all the fyrst lettyr that ye sent me. I sent itt yow by yonge Thomas Elys.

I sent yow anothyr lettyr by Playter, the whyche was wretyn on Saterday[245.4] last past.

Item, I receyvyd a lettyr frome yow on Sonday,[245.5] of the wyche I sent yow an answher of ma lettyr on Seynt Symondes Evyn and Jwde by Edmunde Clere of Stokysby; and as sone as I hade the seyd lettyr on Sonday, I sent to Syr Thomas Howes for the mater that ye desyryd that he scholde inqwer of to Bokyng, and I sent a yene sethe to the seyd Syr Thomas for to have knowlage of the same mater yestyrdaye, and I have non answher of hym yet. He sent me worde he scholde do hys part there in, but othyr answer have I none yet of hym. I sende yow in a canvase bage, inselyd by Nycolas Colman, as many of Crystofyr Hansonys acomptys as Jon Paston can fynde ther as [_where_] ye sent worde that they were. Rychard Harbard recomawndyth hym to yow, and prayth yowe that ye wole wychesave to remembre the lettyr that scholde be sent fro my Lorde of Warwyk to a man of hys beyng at Lowystofete; and if it be not sent to hym, that it plese yow to do purvey that it may be sent to hym in haste, if it maye be, as to morow ther schall be keppyd a day at Bowunggey for Mastyr Fastolfys londys be for the exchetore, and there schall be Wylliam Barker and Rychard Call. Ye schall have knowlage in haste what schall be do ther. And the blyssyd Trinite have yow in Hys kepyng.

Wretyn in haste at Norwyche on the Wednysday next aftyr Seynt Symond and Jwde,

Be yowyr

M. P.

[Footnote 245.1: [From Paston MSS., B.M.] The date of this letter is ascertained by the statement at the end that, on the morrow, a 'day' was to be kept at Bungay for Fastolf's lands.

The inquisition on Fastolf's lands in the county of Suffolk was held at Bungay on Thursday before All Saints, 39 Henry VI., _i.e._ 30th October 1460.--(Inquisitions _post mortem_, 38 and 39 Hen. VI., No. 48.)]

[Footnote 245.2: The elder son of that name.]

[Footnote 245.3: _See_ No. 423.]

[Footnote 245.4: October 25th.]

[Footnote 245.5: October 26th.]



_To my ryght wurschypfull Ser, John Paston, Esquyer._

[Sidenote: 1460(?) / DEC. 5]

Ryght wurschypfull Ser, after ryzth hertely recomendacion, lyke it yow to wete that my Maister Fastolf, hoose sowle God asoyle, whan I bowth of hym the maner of Blyclyng, consideryng the gret payment that I payed therfor, and the yerly annuyte duryng his lyfe after his entent, was to me gret charge; and the same tyme, in his place at Southwerk, by his othe made on his primer ther, grauntted and promitted to me to have the maner of Guton, with all the apportenaunce for a resonable pris afor ony other man. And, Ser, as I understande ye be that person that my seid maister, consideryng your gret wysdom, most trosted to have rewle and dyreccion of his lyfelode and goodes,--and, Ser, trewly, yf I hed ben nere unto yow, I wold have spoken to yow herof be for this tyme; neverthelasse I wolde desyre and pray yow to schewe me yowr goode wyll and favour in this by halve, wher inne ye schall dyscharge my seid maistres sowle of his othe and promyse, and I schall do yow servyce in that I can or maye to my power. And of yowr goode wyll and favour herynne I pray yow to late me have wetyng, and I schall be redy to wayte on yow at ony tyme and place wher ye wull assyne. And owr blysyd Lord have yow in his kepyng.--Wret the v. day of Decembre.

Be youer owyn,


[Footnote 246.1: [From Paston MSS., B.M.] This letter was probably written in the year 1460. It is evident some time had elapsed since Sir John Fastolf's death, but as the subject was one which the writer wished to bring early before Paston's notice, it is not likely that he allowed much more than a twelvemonth to pass by.]

[Footnote 247.1: The subscription and signature only are in Boleyn's hand.]



[Sidenote: 1461(?) / JAN. (?)]

Jhesus help, Marye mercy, et Franciscus cum Sanctis subveniant defuncto et suis in tribulationibus. Amen.

Praecordialissime in Jhesu Christo praedilecte, et omissis pro praesenti singulis vestram amicabilem benevolentiam concernentibus, propter quasdam materias mihi a fidedignis personis nuper relatas, &c., equitetis quam cito potestis secure pro corporis vestri conservatione.

Scitote quod commissionarius J. Heydon, vester ac meus capitalis inimicus, Philippus Wentworth et J. Andrw malignantur maxime contra vos et M. T. H.[248.1] et me et alios vestros. Et magister Clemens et ego sequemur vos usque Colcestriam, ibidem expectando donec vos aliquem nuncium de London illuc miseritis, et tunc ad vos veniemus cum duobus vel tribus famulis nostro proposito necessariis, R. Botilere Matthaeo Gowh vel Johanne Lore. Sumus nempe equestres pessimi, nec ascensum equi seu descensum scientes, sed adjutorium ad minus duorum est nobis duobus necessarium, &c. Certe si non esset aura tam contraria, et pluvialis nimis, quare equitare est nobis omnino necessarium; aliter vere melius profecissem pro me in itinere per ambulare quam per equitare.

W. Y.[248.2] judex cum omni consilio Johanni Heidon faciet contra vos et me et M. T. H. quicquid potest; quare dicit Gregorius, 'Minus jacula feriunt quae praevidentur.' Si W. P., vester germanus, et T. Playtere, cum associatis antecederent, plura percipere possent quae jam non cognoscent, &c., utinam velletis hoc instancia cordiali considerare in effectu.

Notate q. .[248.3] literam a me primo vobis scriptam de pigricia, &c., quanta mala proveniunt ex illa, &c., W. Rokewode est rogatus a W. Y.

judice ut faveat sibi et Tendale contra Wyndham armigerum pro manerio de Felbrigge, cum pertinenciis, &c., et tunc scietur utrum J. H. favebit Wyndham vel Judici, &c., cum ejus flatus olim calidus, olimque frigidus existat, et aliquando nec calidus nec frigidus sed satis tepidus. Sed oretis cum propheta, 'Confundantur qui me persequuntur et non confundar ego, paveant illi et non paveam ego; induc super eos diem affliccionis et duplici contritione contere eos,'[248.4] domine Deus. Et Psalmista ait 'Averte mala inimicis meis et in veritate tua disperde illos'[248.5]

et sequentia. Et [super] inimicos meos despexit oculus meus. Valete in Christo Jhesu. Scriptum festinantissime, feria vj^{a}. Recommendetis me specialissime magistro T. H. et J. Berneye, &c.

Vester ad vota,

F. J. B.

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