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[Sidenote: 1468 / JULY 22]

Rythe it is so that I may not, as oft as I wold, be ther as [_i.e._ where] I might do my message myselff, myn owne fayir Mastresse Annes, I prey yow to accept thys byll for my messanger to recomand me to yow in my most feythfull wyse, as he that faynest of all other desyreth to knowe of yowr welfare, whyche I prey God encresse to your most plesure.

And, mastresse, thow so be that I as yet have govyn yow bot easy [_i.e._ little] cause to remembyr me for leke of aqweyntacion, yet I beseche yow, let me not be forgotyn when ye rekyn up all yowr servaunts, to be sett in the nombyr with other.

And I prey yow, Mastresse Annes, for that servyse that I owe yow, that in as short tyme as ye goodly may that I myght be assarteynyd of yowr entent and of your best frends in syche maters as I have brokyn to yow of, whyche bothe your and myn ryght trusty frends John Lee, or ellys my mastresse hys wyff, promysyd befor yow and me at our fyrst and last being togedyr, that as sone as they or eyther of theym knewe your entent and your frendys that they shold send me woord. And if they so do, I tryst sone aftyr to se yow.

And now farewell, myn owne fayir lady, and God geve yow good rest, for in feythe I trow ye be in bed.

Wretyn in my wey homward on Mary Maudeleyn Day at mydnyght.

Your owne,


Mastresse Annes, I am prowd that ye can reed Inglyshe; wherfor I prey yow aqweynt yow with thys my lewd [_uncouth_] hand, for my purpose is that ye shalbe more aqweyntyd with it, or ellys it shalbe ayenst my wyll; but yet, and when ye have red thys byll, I prey yow brenne it or kepe it secret to yoursylff, as my feythefull trust is in yow.

[Footnote 300.2: [From Fenn, ii. 294.] The Mrs. Anne to whom this letter was addressed seems to have been a Mrs. Anne Haute, to whom Sir John was for a long time engaged. That it was written before the year 1469 will appear probable on referring to Margaret Paston's letter written on Easter Monday (3rd April) in that year, in which she wishes to know for certain if he be engaged; and we have therefore little difficulty in referring it to the year 1468, when Sir John was over in Flanders at the marriage of the Princess Margaret to Charles of Burgundy. Mrs. Anne appears to have been a lady of English extraction, who was either born abroad or had passed most of her life on the Continent. She was, moreover, related to Lord Scales, and is therefore not unlikely to have been the daughter of one William Haute of Kent, who married at Calais, in 1429, the daughter of a certain Richard Wydeville. (See _Excerpta Historica_, p. 249.) But she could speak and even read English; and Sir John, who was now returning homewards to England, designed in this letter to open a correspondence with her. He appears, however, not to have despatched it, as the original remained among the papers of the Paston family; or else perhaps it was returned to him on the breaking off of the engagement.]



_To my moste honorabyl Lord Cadenall, and Archibushop of Caunterbury._

[Sidenote: 1468 / OCT. 10]

Moste reverent and my ryght good Lord, I recomaund me to your gracyous Lordshyp yn my moste humble wyse. Please your Lordshyp to wete that my Lord Norffolk councell hath now late mevyd Sir Wylliam Yelverton, Knyght, and me to be preferryd for to purchasse the maner of Castre, and certeyn other lordshypps that wer my Maystyr Fastolf, whom God pardon, owt excepted the maner of Gunton that yowr Lordshyp desyryth to purchasse, and othyr certeyn maners that my Mastyr Fastolf frendys hafe desyred to be preferryd. And be cause the pretens bargayn that John Paston yn hys lyffe surmytted, bye colour of which he entended to hafe all my Mastyr Fastolf londes in Norffolk and Suffolk for nought, savyng the hygh reverence of your astate, was not juste ne trew; and be cause that I wyth othyr of my Master Fastolf executors may have wher of to dyspospose yn cheryte full dedys to do for hys sowle; I have condescended the rather that my seide Lord of Norffolk shall be preferryd to the purchasse of the seyde maner of Castre, and othyr maners that may be sparyd to th'encresse of hys lyfelode yn thys land; and thys covenantys to be engroced upp wythynne shorth tyme, as by all Halowaunce, in case yowr Lordshyp be agreed and plesyd wyth all; wher uppon I wold beseche yowr nobyll Lordshyp to lete me wete your good plesur and avice yn thys behalfe.

And be cause my seyd Lord Norffolk ys so nere of blode to yowr hyghnesse knyghted, that meevyd me to be the more wyllyng to condescend to the forseyd purchasse, and so trustyng your Lordshyp wold be ryght well pleased wyth alle. Wretyn at Norwich the x. day of Octobyr, anno viij.

R. E. iiij^{ti}.

Yowr pore chapleyn,


[Footnote 302.1: [From Fenn, iv. 298.]]

[[anno viij. R. E. iiij^{ti}.

_text has "iiij^t" alone, without punctuation: corrected from Fenn_]]



[_Circa_ 1468.] Long declaration in English (on a paper roll) by Thomas Howes, 'for the discharge of his conscience,' impugning the authenticity of the will nuncupative, said to have been made by Sir J. Fastolf on the day of his death, and propounded by John Paston and the said Thomas in opposition to an earlier will propounded by Sir W. Yelverton and W. Worcetyr; containing details intended to prove that the alleged will was fabricated by Paston. Amongst other things, Howes says that at Paston's desire he did, a year before Fastolf's death, move Fastolf that Paston might buy three of his manors and live in his college, 'and the seyd Fastolf, mevyd and passyoned gretely in his soule, seyd and swar by Cryst ys sides, "And I knewe that Paston woolde by ony of my londes or my godes he shulde nevyr be my feffe, nother myn executor." Albeyt he seyde that he wolde suffer that the said Paston for terme of hys lyf shall have a loggyng yn a convenyent place yn the seyd maner of Castre withoute denyance of ony havyng intrest yn the seyd maner.

[Footnote 303.1: [From a MS. in Magdalen College, Oxford.] This Abstract is derived from Mr. Macray's Report on the Muniments of Magdalen College, printed in the Fourth Report of the Historical MSS. Commission.]



_To Maistyr Syr John Paston, Knyght, at London, with my Lorde the Archebisshop of Yorke, be this letter delyverid._

[Sidenote: 1468 / OCT. 28]

I recommand me unto you. It is tolde me that the man that ye wote of cam ridyng by my Lady Suthfolk and by Cotton, which is in gret decay; and Barnay tolde him that Edward Dale tolde hem he durst no lenger serve him of ale, for it was warnid hym that my Lady Suffolk[304.1] wolde entyr, and whan she shulde enter few men shulde knowe, it shulde be do so sodenly. She taryeth but of tythynges fro London. He spak nat with hyr.

I pray you speke to my Lorde of Zorke[304.2] for the subpena in the Chanceri ayen William Paston that he take noon hurte. He desyrith to write to yow for it. My Lorde of Northfolk men have warnid the tenantis to pay you no mony, and thai speke alle in the Kynges name. Ye may tell my Lorde of Yorke that it is open in every mannys mouth in this contre the language that my Lorde of Yorke and my Lord of Warwik had to my Lorde of Norfolk in the Kings chambre, and that my Lorde of Yorke saide, rathir than the londe shulde go so, he wolde com dwell ther hym sliff.

Ye wolde mervaile what harts my Lords hath goten, and how this language put peeple in comforte. My Lorde of Norffolk answerde that he wolde speke to my Lady his wiff, and entret hir. And your adversarys reherce that my Lorde shall never be Chanceleer til this mateer be spede,[304.3]

for ther bargans ar made condicionall, to holde and nat holde as afftir my Lorde be Chaunceler and nat. Sothwell is all the doar, and he hath saide that my Lorde of Zorke licensid hym to labour in the mateer. My Lorde of Norwich shuld by xl. marke of the same lond. Thai entende to have a man of my Lady of Suthfolks sheryve, and specially Harcort. My Lorde coude nat bileve it but if [_i.e._ unless] he harde it, how it is rejoysshid in som place that he is nat Chaunceleer. Ther cam oo man into the contre with a newe patent, saying that my Lorde was Chanceler, and at that was the first patent that was sealid sithen he was officeer. The tythandes did goode _pro tempore_. Ther are witnes labourid, as it is said, to witnes and swere ageyn you of men of c_li._ a yeer, and many oder men, som that knew never of the mateer nor never harde Sir John Faskolff speke; ye know what jure is in this contre in maters that ar favoured by them that ar now ageyn you. It is harde whan a mateer restid by jure in this contre, som of the same quest that founde you bondeman shall witnesse ayens you. Syr Thomas Howys comyth to London, and if my Lorde of Zorke wolde entret frendely my Lorde of Ely,[305.1] and get feithfully his promyse that my Lorde of Ely sende for Hawys, he shulde make Hawys to go home ageyn and leve all his fellowis post allon; and that my Lorde wolde entret my Lorde Tresaurer, my Lord Penbrok,[305.2]

my Lady Bedford,[305.3] and remembre the bargan is not yit made, it may be better lettid affor than afftyr; and if the mateer spede my Lorde getith gret worshipp and gret thanke. I doute not he undirstondyth it, for it is well undirstonde what he hath saide. And pray his Lordeshipp to remembre a shereve this yeer, for ther is mych to be undirstonde in the shereve. And sende me worde if my Lorde Penbrok be go, and if my Lorde be Chaunceler. Et memorandum, Sir William Terell your testimoniall. Et memorandum, my Lorde Cardynall to sende answer to Sir Thomas Howys; and though my Lorde Cardynall be nat ther now, yit lat Townysende make it redy ageyns my Lords commyng. If Sir Thomas Howys wer handelyd by Maister Tressam and made byleve and put in hope of the moone shone in the water and I wot nat what, that such labor wer made that eythir he shulde be a pope or els in dyspeyr to be depryved _de omni beneficio ecclesiastico_ for symony, lechory, perjory, and doubble variable pevyshnesse, and for admynystryng without auctoryte; and how he promisid bi his feith to my Lord t'obey his rewle and brak it, and what he hath saide to my lords in this mateer; and if ye recur in the courte, he shall be undo, and this mateer tolde hym by my Lorde of Ely and Maister Tresham, halff in game and halff in ernest, it shulde make hym to departe, for Yelvyrton and he ar halff at variance now. And entret my Lords servaunts to speke in your maters to all such persones as nede is.

And I shall be hastyly with you by the grace of God, whom have yow in kepyng. Writen on Seynt Simonde Day and Jude.

By your owne.

[Footnote 303.2: [From Paston MSS., B.M.] The reference to the Earl of Pembroke, who was only so created in 1468, and who was beheaded in July 1469, fixes the date of this letter to the former year.]

[Footnote 304.1: Alice, widow of William de la Pole, Duke of Suffolk.]

[Footnote 304.2: George Nevill, Archbishop of York.]

[Footnote 304.3: The Great Seal was taken from Archbishop Nevill on the 8th June 1467. Apparently in 1468 he was hoping to be made Chancellor again.]

[Footnote 305.1: William Grey, Bishop of Ely.]

[Footnote 305.2: William Herbert, Earl of Pembroke.]

[Footnote 305.3: _See_ page 188, Note 3.]

[[with my Lorde the Archebisshop of Yorke _text has "Lorae" (italic a for d)_]]



_To my ryght welbelovyd brother, John Paston, Esqer, beyng at Caster, or to John Dawbeney there, be this letter delyvered._

[Sidenote: 1468 / NOV. 9]

Ryght welbelovyd brother, I comand me to yow, letyng yow wete that I have wagyd for to helpe yow and Dawbeney to kepe the place at Castr, iiij. wel assuryd and trew men to do al maner of thyng what that they be desyryd to do, in save gard or enforcyng of the seyd place; and mor ovyr they be provyd men, and connyng in the werr, and in fetys of armys, and they kan wele schote bothe gonnys and crossebowes, and amende and strynge them, and devyse bolwerkys, or any thyngs that scholde be a strenkthe to the place; and they wol, as nede is, kepe wecche and warde.

They be sadde and wel advysed men, savyng on of them, whyche is ballyd, and callyd Wylliam Peny, whyche is as goode a man as gothe on the erthe, savyng a lytyll he wol, as I understand, be a lytel copschotyn [_high-crested_], but yit he is no brawler, but ful of cortesye, meche uppon James Halman; the other iij. be named Peryn Sale, John Chapman, Robert Jakys Son, savyng that as yit they have non harneyse comyn, but when it komyth it schall be sent to yow, and in the meane whyle I pray yow and Dawbeney to purvey them some.

Also a cople of beddys they most nedys have, whyche I pray yow by the help of my modre to purvey for them, tyl that I com home to yow. Ye schall fynde them gentylmanly, comfortable felawes, and that they wol and dare abyde be ther takelyng; and if ye undrestond that any assawte schold be towardys, I sende yow thes men, becawse that men of the contre ther about yow scholde be frayed for fer of losse of ther goods; wherfor if ther wer any suche thyng towards, I wolde ye take of men of the contre but few, and that they wer well assuryd men, for ellys they myght discorage alle the remenant.

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