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Be zow[r] bede man,

R. C. V. C.

[Footnote 82.1: [From Fenn, iv. 128.] In the preceding letter Sir John Paston seems to have been at home; in Letter 552, we find that he had left home without leave. It is very probable, therefore, that the present letter was written in the interval between them, seeing that the writer complains of Sir John being kept at home.]

[Footnote 82.2: This Lady Chamberlayne was Anne, daughter and sole heir of Sir Robert Herling, Knight, by Jane, daughter and heir of John Gonvile, Esq. Her first husband was Sir William Chamberlayne, Knight of the Garter, a renowned and valiant soldier, who died in 1462. She was at this time his widow, and inherited from her father a very considerable fortune.

She afterwards married Sir Robert Wingfield, and after his decease she became the wife of John, Lord Scroop of Bolton.

By the name of Lady Scroop she founded and endowed a Fellowship in the College of Gonville and Caius at Cambridge, originally founded by an ancestor of her Ladyship's.

She was born in 1426, and was alive in 1502.

At the time this letter was written she must have been nearly forty years old, when Sir John Paston could not have been much above twenty.--F.]

[[College of Gonville and Caius _editor's error for "Gonville" alone (John Caius was born in 1510)_]]



_To my ryght worchipfull hosbond, John Paston, be thys letter delyveryd in hast._

[Sidenote: 1463 / NOV. 13]

Riht worchepfull husbond, I recommand me to you. Please you to wete that I was at Norwic this wek to purvey suche thyngs as nedythe me ageyns thys wynter; and I was at my modder, and wille I was ther, ther cam in on Wrothe, a kynnysman of Elysabet Clers, and he sey your dowter, and preysyd hyr to my moder, and seyd that she was a goodly yong woman; and my moder prayd hym for to gett for hyr on good mariage yf he knewe any; and he seyd he knewe on shuld be of a CCC. mark be yer, the wyche is Sir John Cley son, that is Chamberleyn with my Lady of York,[83.2] and he ys of age of xviij. yer old. Zyf ye thynk it be for to be spok of, my moder thynkyth that it shuld be get for lesse mony nowe in thys world than it shuld be her after, owthyr that j. [_one_], or sum other good mariage.

Item, I spake with Master John Estgate for Pekerynes mater after your entent of the mater of the letter that ye sent home, and he seyd to me he shuld write to yow howe he had don ther in; and so he sent you a letter, the wyche was sent you be John Wodows[84.1] man with other letters.

As for answer [of] other mater, Daubeney tellythe me he wret to you.

I be seche Alle myghty God have you in Hys kepyng. Wretyn at Caster, the Sonday next after Seynt Marteyne.

Be your


[Footnote 83.1: [From Fenn, iv. 88.] I have found no letters of Margaret Paston dated from Caister before the year 1463; but I am inclined to think that this and the letter following both belong to that year. The latter, being addressed to Sir John Paston, at least cannot be earlier, and my reasons for believing it to be of that very year will be seen in the note to it (p. 84, Note 2). It is just possible that this letter may be of a different date, but considering that both were written in November, and both of them certainly between the 12th and the 19th, and that in both Margaret Paston not only dates from Caister, but speaks of Daubeney as being with her, the presumption, I think, is pretty strong that they are of the same year.]

[Footnote 83.2: Cecily, Duchess of York, widow of Richard Plantagenet, Duke of York, and mother of Edward IV. She died in an advanced age, at her castle of Berkhamstead, in May 1495, and was buried near her husband, in the Choir of the Collegiate Church of Fotheringhay, in Northamptonshire.--F.]

[Footnote 84.1: John Wodehouse, Esq. of Kimberley, son of the renowned John Wodehouse, Esq., who gained so much honour at the battle of Agincourt; he died in 1465, and lies buried in Kimberley Chancel.--F.]



_To my welbelovyd son, Sir John Paston, be this deliveryd in hast._

[Sidenote: 1463 / NOV. 15]

I gret yow welle, and send yow Godds blissyng and myn, latyng yow wet that I have receyved a letter from you, the wyche ye deliveryd to Master Roger at Lynne, wherby I conseyve that ye thynke ye ded not well that ye departyd hens withowt my knowlage. Wherfor I late yow wett I was ryght evyll payed with yow. Your fader thowght, and thynkyth yet, that I was asentyd to your departyng, and that hathe causyd me to have gret hevinesse. I hope he wolle be your good fader hereafter, yf ye demene you welle, and do as ye owe to do to hym; and I charge you upon my blyssyng that in any thyng towchyng your fader that shuld be hys worchep, profyte, or avayle, that ye do your devoyr and dylygent labor to the fortherans therin, as ye wulle have my good wille, and that shall cause your fader to be better fader to you.

It was told me ye sent hym a letter to London. What the entent therof was I wot not, but thowge he take it but lyghtly, I wold ye shuld not spar to write to hym ageyn as lowly as ye cane, besechyng hym to be your good fader; and send hym suche tydyngs as be in the contre thir ye bethe in, and that ye war [_beware_] of your expence bettyr and ye have be befor thys tyme, and be your owne purse berer, I trowe ye shall fyndyt most profytable to you.

I wold ye shuld send me word howghe ye doo, and howghe ye have schevyfte for yourself syn ye departyd hens, be som trosty man, and that your fader have no knowlage therof. I durste not late hym knowe of the laste letter that ye wrot to me, be cause he was so sor dyspleasyd with me at that tyme.

Item, I wold ye shuld speke with Wekis, and knowe hys dysposysion to Jane Walsham. She hathe seyd, syn he departyd hens, but [_unless_] she myght have hym, she wold never maryd, hyr hert ys sor set on hym; she told me that he seyd to hyr that ther was no woman in the world he lovyd so welle. I wold not he shuld jape hyr, for she menythe good feythe; and yf he wolle not have hyr, late me wete in hast, and I shall purvey for hyr in othyr wysse.

As for your harneys and ger that ye left here, it ys in Daubeneys kepyng; it was never remevyd syn your departyng, be cause that he had not the keyes. I trowe it shall apeyer [_get injured_], but if it be take hed hate [_unless it be taken heed at_, or _to_] be tymys. Your fader knowythe not wher it is.

I sent your grey hors to Ruston to the ferror, and he seythe he shull never be nowght to rood, nowthyr ryght good to plowe nor to carte; he seyth he was splayyd, and hys shulder rent from the body. I wot not what to do with hym.

Your grandam wold fayne here sum tydyngs from yow. It wer welle do that ye sent a letter to hyr howe ye do, as astely as ye may. And God have you in Hys kepyng, and make yow a good man, and zyf yow grace to do as well as I wold ye shuld do.

Wretyn at Caster, ye Tewisday next befor Seynt Edmund the Kynge.

Your moder,


I wold ye shuld make mech of the parson [of] Fylby, the berer herof, and make hym good cher yf ye may.

[Footnote 84.2: [From Fenn, iv. 168.] As Sir John Paston was knighted in the year 1463, and his father died in May 1466, the date of this letter must lie between the years 1463 and 1465.

I think the first of these years is probably the true date. Sir John Paston, it seems, had left home without letting his mother know of his intention. Whither had he gone? Not to London, because he addressed a letter to his father there; besides he had passed by Lynn. One would naturally suppose, therefore, that he had gone to wait upon the King, at a time when Edward was at a distance from the capital. And in this view we are confirmed by the passage in which Margaret desires her son to speak with Wykes, who, as we know by Letter 514, was an usher of the King's Chamber. Now Edward IV. was in Yorkshire, staying, for the most part, at Pomfret, during October and November 1463, while about the same time of year in 1464 he was at Reading, and in 1465 at Greenwich. Sir John would naturally have passed through Lynn on his road to the North.]

[[I conseyve that ye thynke _text has "thar": corrected from Fenn_]]



_To my ryth worchepfull husbond, Jon Paston, be thys lettyr delyveryd in haste._

[Sidenote: 1462-3 / DEC.]

Ryth worchepfull husbond, I recomand me to yow. Plesyth it yow to wet that Jon Jeney was here with me thys daye and told me that ye desyiryd that I shold do make a dyche at Heylysdon, and the seson is not for to do make no new dechys, nor to repare non old tyll it be aftyr Crystmas, as it is told me, and so I sent yow word in a lettyr more thane a monythe goo; I wot not whedyr ye had the lettyr or not, for I had non answer ther of fro yow. Jone Dyngayne recomandyth hyr to yow, and prayith yow for Goddys sake that ye wole be hyr good mastyr, and that ye wole wychesave to spek to Hwe of Fen for hyr, for it is so that serteyn lyvelod whyche hyr husbond had in Engham was cast in the kyngys hand in hyr husbandys lyve, and, as she undyrstandyth, it was do in hys fadyrys lyve; of the whyche hyr husband spok to Hwe of Fen ther of in hys lyve to helpe that he myth be dyschargyd ther of, and Hwe of Fen promysyd hym verily that he had mad an ende ther in and dyschargyd hym, and that he shold never be hurt nor trublyd ther for; and now the laste wek Barnard the undyr scheryfe sent downe a warant to sese the lond for the Kynge, and so, but [_unless_] he have xx_s._ for a fyne within shorte tyme he wol not suffyr her to have the avayle of the londys. Wher fore she prayith yow, for Goddys sak, that ye wole purvey a mene that Hwe of Fen may save hyr harmles, in as myche as he promysyd hyr husbond to purvey ther fore in hys lyve; and if it plese not yow to spek to hym ther of, that it plese yow to do John Paston or Thomas Playter or sume othyr, that ye thynk that cane undyrstande the mater, for to spek to the seyd Hwe of Fen ther of in hyr name, and to serge the kyngys bokys ther fore, if ye thynk that it be for to do, and sche woll ber the cost ther of. As for the mater that ze wold I schold spek to Wylliam Worcester of towchyng the false forgyd evydens, I can not spek with hym yet; hys wyfe seyth allwe that he is oute when that I send for hym. Yowyr fermore of Sweynysthorpe hathe fownde suerte for yowyr dute, as Rychard Calle tellyth me, so that ye scholl be plesyd when ye come home. And the blyssyd Trinite have yow in Hys kepyng. Wretyn in hast on the Monday next aftyr Seynt Andrew.

By yowyr,

M. P.

[Footnote 86.1: [Add. MS. 34,889, f. 198.] This letter must lie between the years 1459, when Sir John Fastolf died (as Hellesden belonged to him), and 1465, as John Paston died in May 1466. The most probable year is either 1462 or 1463, for it is mentioned here that Paston's farmer at Swainsthorpe had found security for the payment of his rent, and Richard Calle had levied four marks rent of him in February 1464. _See_ No. 558.]


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