JOHN PASTON, THE ELDER, TO HIS FATHER[34.1]
_To myn ryth reverent and worschypfull fader, John Paston, beyng in the Inder Temple._
[Sidenote: 1462 / MARCH 13]
Ryght reverent and wyrshypfull fader, I recomand me un to you, be sychyng you of your blessyng and gode faderhode. Pleasyt it you to understond the grete expens that I have dayly travelyng with the Kyng, as the berour here of can enfourme you; and howe long that I am lyke to tary here in thys country or I may speke with you a gayn, and howe I am chargyd to have myn hors and harnys redy, and in hasty wyse, besykyng you to consyder theys causes, and so to remembr me that I may have suche thynges as I may do my mayster servys with and pleasur, trusting in God it schall be to your wyrshyp and to myn and vayll [_avail_]. In especiall I besyche you, that I may be sur where to have mony somwhat be fore Estern, other of you, or by myn uncle Clement, when nede ys. Of othir causes the berour hereof can enfourme you. No more to you at thys tyme, but God have you in Hys kepyng.
Wryten at Stamford, the xiij. day of March.
Be yowr sone and servant,
JOHN PASTON, THE OLDER.
[Footnote 34.1: [From Fenn, iv. 126.] It appears by the dates of the Privy Seal writs that Edward IV. was at Stamford, from the 9th to the 17th March, in the second year of his reign, _i.e._ in 1462. This letter belongs therefore to that year.]
REPORT OF FRENCH PRISONERS[35.1]
_Memorandum. This is the confessyon of xvj. Frenshemen with the Mastyr, takyn at Sheryngam, the iij. wek of Lent._
[Sidenote: 1462 / MARCH]
Right worshipfull sir, I recomaund me to you, and lete you wytte, that I have be at Shiryngham, and examyned the Frenshmen to the nombre of xvj.
with the maister. And thei telle that the Duke of Somerset is in to Scotland; and thei sey the Lord Hungyrforthe was on Monday last passed afore Sheryngham in to Scotland ward, in a kervyle [_carvel_] of Depe, no gret power with hym, ne with the seid Duk neyther. And thei sey that the Duk of Burgoyn[35.2] is poysened, and not like to recovere. And as for powers to be gadered ayenst our weelfare; thei sey, there shulde come in to Seyne CC. gret forstages[35.3] owt of Spayne, from the Kyng there;[35.4] and CCC. shippes from the Duk of Bretayne[35.5] with the navy of Fraunce, but thei be not yet assembled, ne vitayll there purveyd, as thei sey, ne men. And the Kyng of Fraunce[35.6] is in to Spayne on pilgrymage with fewe hors as thei sey; what the purpose is thei can not telle certeyn, &c. In hast at Norwich.
The Kyng of Frauns hath comitted the rewle of Bordews on to the marchaunds of the toun, and the browd[35.7] tha[t] be therin to be at ther wages; and like as Caleys is a Stapole of wolle here in England, so is that made staple of wyne.
John Fermer, presoner, seyth, on [_one_] John Gylys, a clerk that was with the Erle of Oxforthe, wych was some tym in Kyng Herrys hows, was a prevy secretary with the Erle of Oxforthe; and if any wrytyng wer made by the seyd Erle, the seyd Gylys knew ther of in this gret matyeres.
[Footnote 35.1: [From Fenn, i. 250.] This letter evidently refers to the state of matters in the beginning of the year 1462, when Henry VI. and Margaret of Anjou were in Scotland, and when the Earl of Oxford had just been beheaded for conspiring against Edward IV. The date of Oxford's execution was the 20th of February. This confession of the Frenchmen is dated in the third week of Lent, that is to say, between the 14th and the 20th of March.]
[Footnote 35.2: Philip the Good.]
[Footnote 35.3: Large ships with forestages or forecastles.]
[Footnote 35.4: Henry IV., King of Castile.]
[Footnote 35.5: Francis II., the last Duke.]
[Footnote 35.6: Lewis XI.]
[Footnote 35.7: This word, says Fenn, is imperfect in the original.]
JAMES GRESHAM TO JOHN PASTON[36.1]
_To my right singler maister, J. Paston, Squyer, in hast, &c._
[Sidenote: 1462 / MARCH 24]
After due recomendacion, please it your maistership to wyte Maister Yelverton, justice, seid in the Sessions that the Kyng shulde kepe his Estern at Bury, and from thens come unto this cuntre and se suyche riottes as have be in this cuntre punyshed in suche fourme as happely summe shulde hange by the nekke. And he tolde what thank he had of the Kyng at Cambrigg for cause he declarid so well the charge of extorcions doon by Shirefs and other officers, &c., for the whiche declaracion the Kyng tooke hym by the hand, and seid he cowde hym grett thanke, and prayed hym so to do in this cuntre, &c.
In hast, at Norwich, the Wednesseday next tofore th'Annunciacion, &c.
[Footnote 36.1: [From Fenn, iv. 76.] It does not appear that Edward IV. ever did spend an Easter at Bury, as here projected. He was, however, at Cambridge in the beginning of March 1462; from which he proceeded to Peterborough, Stamford, Newark, and Lincoln, and at Easter (18th April) he seems to have been at Leicester.]
JOHN WYKES TO JOHN PASTON[36.2]
_To my right trusti and welbelovid frend, John Paston, Esquier._
[Sidenote: 1462 / MARCH 25]
Right worshipfull, and myn enterly welbelovyd frend, I recomaund me un to you, hertely thankyng you of your gret present of fisch, and of the felyshipp that my cosyn your sonne shewid unto me att Norwiche, purposyng be the grace of God to deserve it un to you in tyme to come, in such place as I may do for you.
Desiryng you specyally, wher as a tenaunt of myne of Lavenham, called John Fermour, is sesid and arestid with in the towne of Yermowth, be cause he dwellid with the Erle of Oxonfords son, and purposid to have passid the see withou[t] lycence, and stondyth out of the conceyte of much peple, I wold desyre you, that ye wold wryte to the Baylyffs of Yermouth to delyver the seid John Fermor to my servaunt John Brenerigg, brynger of this, with an officer of the seid Towne, to be caried unto the Kyngs Castell of Rysing at my cost; ther to be examynid of certeyne Artycules, which I may not disclose, til I have spoke with the Kyngs Highnes: praying you to wryte to the seid Bayliffs, that I shall be her suffisant discharge ayenst the Kynge. Desyryng yow to geve credence to the brynger herof, as my verray trust is in yow.
Wretyn at Lavenham, the xxv^th. day of Marche.
Your trew and feithfull frend, havyng no blame for my gode wylle.
Ussher of the Kyngs Chambre.
[Footnote 36.2: [From Fenn, i. 252.] As this letter relates to the arrest of a confederate of the Earl of Oxford and his son, who were executed in February 1462, for conspiring against Edward IV., the date must be referred to that year.]
JOHN RUSSE TO JOHN PASTON[37.1]
_To the rigth reverent and worshipfull sir, and my right honourable maystyr, John Paston._
[Sidenote: 1462 / APRIL (?)]