_'An other lettyr to me that I may shewe._
'I gret yow well, and send you Godes blessyng and myn, letyng yow wet that I undyrstand well by my cosyn, Dame Elyzabeth Brewsys lettyr, whyche I sende yow her with, wherby ye may undyrstand the same, that they intend not to performe thos proferys that ye told me they promysyd yow, trustyng that ye told me none other wyse then was promysed yow.
Wherfor I charge yow on my blyssyng that ye be well ware how ye bestow your mynd with ought ye have a substance wher upon to leve; for I wold be sory to wet yow myscary; for if ye do, in your defawt looke never aftyr helpe of me. And also I wold be as sory for hyr as for eny gentywoman leveing, in good feythe; wherfor I warne yow, be ware in eny wyse; and look ye be at Mawtby with me as hastyly as ye can, and then I shall tell yow more. And God kepe yow.
'Wretyn at Mawtby, on Seynt Petrys Day.
[Footnote 290-2: [From Paston MSS., B.M.] This letter, with the two subjoined, are drafts written on the same paper in John Paston's hand. They must belong to the year 1477, being on the same subject, already so often referred to, of the negotiations for John Paston's marriage. Fenn had added addresses to all these letters, and a signature to the first, which are not in the original MS.]
[Footnote 290-3: John Heydon of Baconsthorpe, who died on the 27th September 1479.--Inquisition p.m., 19 Edw. IV., No. 72.]
SIR JOHN PASTON TO MARGARET PASTON[293-1]
_To the ryght worshypfull Mestresse Margret Paston._
[Sidenote: 1477 / AUG. 7]
Please it yow to weete that I have receyvyd yowr letter, wretyn the Tywesdaye nexte afftre Seynt James Daye, wherin ye desyre me to remembre Kokett, and also to be helpyng to my brother Johnes mariage. As for Kokett, as God helpe me, I knowe nott yitt the meanes possible that I myght paye hym by thatt daye, ffor thoos materis that be off grettest wyght and charge, and that stonde nerrest my weell, that is to seye, the sywerte off the maner off Castre, and the mater betwen Anne Hault and me shall, with Goddes grace, thys terme be at a perffyght ende, whyche will charge me fferther than I have mony as yitt, or lyke to have byffor that tyme, off myne owne, and, as God helpe me, I wote nott where to borow.
Item, I most paye with in thys iij. yeer iiij^c.  marke to Towneshende, or ellis fforffett the maner off Sporle, and thus my charges be gretter than I maye a weye with, concidryd suche helpe as I have; and iff it ffortunyd that I fforffetyd the maner off Sporle, ye weer never lyke to se me myry afftre, so God helpe me. Ye gave me ones xx_li._ to it wardes, and ye promyttyd as moche, whyche I receyvyd, and synnys off my mony off seide maner growyng that come to yowr handys was receyvyd by yow ageyn the seyd xl_li._, whyche, when Kokett scholde be payed, was nott yowr ease to departe wyth. Neverthelesse ye may yitt, when yow lyketh, perfforme yowr sayde gyffte and promyse, and thys somme owyng to Kokett is nott so moche; neverthelesse I suppose that ye be nott so weell purveyed. Wherffor, iff it please yow at yowr ease her afftre to performe yowr seyde gyffte and promyse, so that I may have it with in a yer or ij. or yitt iij., I sholde per case gete yowr obligacion to yow ageyn ffrom Kokett, and he pleasyd. Wherffor I beseche yow that I maye have an assyngnement of suche dettes as been owyng yow, payeable at leyser off suche mony as is owyng ffor the woode at Basyngham or ellys wher; ffor, so God helpe me, I sholde ellys wylfully ondoo myselffe, wherin I beseche yow to sende me an answer in hast.
Item, as towchyng the mariage off my brother John, I have sente hym myn advyce, and tolde hym wherto he shall truste, and I have grauntyd hym as moche as I maye. I wolde that I weer at on communycacion atwyen them for hys sake, whyche I sholde if I myght. As for my comyng home, I ame nott yitt sertayn therof; I shalle hast me as faste as I canne, with the grace of God, Who have yow in Hys kepyng.
I beseche yow to remembre the premyssis, and to helpe me, and with Goddes grace, thes ij. materis above wretyn, bothe of Castre and Mestresse Anne Hault, shall be endyd to my profyth and rest, and moor ovyr, er awghte longe to, with Goddes grace, the maner of Sporle to be owte of danger; promyttyng yow that I shall doo in Kokettes mater as moche as is possible for me to doo to yower plesyr. It shall never neede to prykk nor threte a free horse. I shall do whatt I can.
Wretyn the Thorysdaye next byffore Seynt Lawrence, anno E. iiij^ti xvij.
By yowre sone,
JOHN PASTON, K.
[Footnote 293-1: [From Paston MSS., B.M.]]
MARGARET PASTON TO SIR JOHN PASTON[294-1]
[Sidenote: 1477 / AUG. 11]
Yt ys soo that I undyrstonde be yowyr letter wretyn the Thyrsday nexte be fore Seynt Lauerons, that ze wulde have knowlage how that I wuld be demenyd in Cokettes mater; qweche I send you here undyr wretyn. I putte yow in certeyn that I wull nevyr pay him peny of that duty that ys owyng to hym, thow he sue me for yt, not of myn owyn pursse; for I wul nat be compellyd to pay yowyr dettes azens my well, and thow I wuld, I may nat.
Where fore I a wyse yow to see me savyd harmelesse azens hym for yowyr owyn a wauntage in tyme cumyng, for yf I pay yt, at longe wey ze xall bere the losse.
And where as ze wryte to me that I gave yow xx_li._, and promysyd odyr xx_li._, that ys nat soo, for I wutte wele yf I had soo doon, ze wuld nat assynyd me be yowyr letterys of yowyr owyn hande wrytyng, the whech I have to schew, that I schuld resseyve a zen the same summe of Wylliam Pecok, and of yowyr fermores, and byars of yowyr wood of Sporle; and take this for a full conclusyon in thys mater, for yt xall be noon othyr wyse for me than I wryte here to yow.
I mervel meche that ze have delte azen soo symply wyth Sporle, consyderyng that ze and yowyr frendys had so meche to doo for to geetyt yow azen onys; and ye havyng noo gretter materes of charge than ze have had sythyn yt was laste pleggyt owte, yt causyth me to be in gret dowte of yow what yowyr dysposycion wul be here aftyr for swheche lyfelood as I have be dysposyd before this tyme to leve yow after my decesse. For I thynke veryly that ye wulde be dysposyd here aftyr to selle or sette to morgage the lond that ye xulde have after me yowyr modyr as gladdly and rathyr than that lyfe lood that ye have after yowyr fadyr. Yt grevyth me to thynke upon yowyr gydeyng after the greet good that ze have had in yowyr rewle sythyn yowyr fadyr deyyd, whom God assoyle, and soo symply spendyt as yt hath ben. God geve yow grace to be of sadde and good dysposyn here after to Hys plesans, and comforte to me, and to all yowyr frendys, and to yowyr wurchyp and profyte here after.
And as for yowyr brothyr Wylliam, I wuld ye xulde purvey for hys fyndyng, for as I told yow the laste tyme that ye ware at home, I wuld no lenger fynde hym at my cost and charge; hys boord and hys scole hyer ys owyng sythyn Seynt Thomas Day afore Cristmesse, and he hathe greet nede of gownys and odyr gere that whare necessary for hym to have in haste. I wulde ze xulde remembyrt and purvey them, for as for me, I wul nat. I thynke ze sette butte lytyl be myn blessyng, and yf ye dede, ye wulde a desyyrd yt in yowyr wrytyng to me. God make yow a good man to Hys plesans.
Wretyn at Mawteby, the day after Seynt Lauerons, the yere and the renge of Kyng E. the iiij^te the xvij. zere.
Be yowyr Modyr.
[Footnote 294-1: [From Paston MSS., B.M.] This letter is not addressed, the original being a corrected draft, but there is no doubt it was written to Sir John Paston in reply to the last. It is endorsed in a more modern hand: 'Copia literae Jo. Paston, mil., a matre sua.']
EDMUND BEDYNGFELD TO SIR JOHN PASTON[296-1]
_Un to the ryght wurschepful Sir John Paston, Knyght._
[Sidenote: 1477 / AUG. 17]
Master Paston, after all dew recomandacion, and herty dissire to here of your good hele, plese yt you to wete I have spoken with Sir John of Medilton as wel as I cowde, and yt had ben for myself, for his hoby that ye dissired, and tolde hym he myght wel forbere hym nowe in as moche as Mastres Jane was ded, and that yt is a great cost for hym to kepe moo hors than he nedyth; and he answered me, that he wold selle hym with good will, but ther shuld no man bie hym under x_li._ Flemesch;[296-2]
and I offered hym in your name, x. marke, for he wold not here of none other ambelyng horse, that ye myght geve hym therfore. And also my lord dissired to have bowte hym for the Lord Schauntrell that is cheff capteyn of Seynt Omers; and he wold no lesse lete my lord have hym than x_li._ and so my lord bowte another, and gave hym the seide lord, for he thoughte this to dere; neverthelesse he wol not selle hym to no man under that mony, that he sette hym on, and so ye may bye your plesur in hym and ye lest; for otherwyse he wol not doo for you, as I conseve.
And as for tydyngs in theyse partyes, the Frenche Keng leyzth at sege at Seynt Omers, on the one side of the town a myle of, but he hath no gret ordenaunce ther; and they of the town skyrmysh with them every day, and kepe a passage halff a myle with oute the town; and the French Keng hath brenned all the townys, and fayre abbeys, that were that way aboute Seynt Omers, and also the cornes weche ar there. And also, as yt ys seide for serteyn, the French Keng hath brenned Cassell, that ys myn hoold Lady of Burgeynys[297-1] joynttor, and all the countre there aboute, whereby she hath lost a gret part of her lyvelod; and that is a sherewed tokyn that he menyth wel to the Keng, howur suffereygn Lord, when he intendyth to distroye her.
Morover Sir Phylep de Crevekere hath takyn them that were in Fynys with inne this iiij. dayes to the noumbre of xiiij. personys, and the remnaunt where fled, and he had them to the French Keng, and he hath brentte all the place, and pulled down the towre, and a part of the wall, and disstroyed yt.
And as yt is seid, yf the French Keng can not gete Seynt Omers, that he intendyth to brenge his armye thorwe theyse marchys into Flaundres; wherefore my lord hath do brokyn all the passages excep Newham bryge, weche is wached, and the turne pyke shette every nyght. And the seide French Keng with inne these iij. dayes rayled gretely of my lord to Tygyr Pursevaunt, opynly byfore ij. hundred of his folks; wherefore yt ys thaught here that he wold feynde a quarell to sett upon thys town, yf he myght gete avantage. And as I understonde, the Emperorys sone[297-2]
ys maryed at Gaunte as this day; and ther cam with hym but iiij. hundred horse, and I can here of no moo that be comyng in serteyn; and in mony he brengyth with hym an hundred thowsand dokets, wheche is but a smalle thyng in regard for that he hath to doo. Wherefore, I fere me sore, that Flaundres will be lost; and yf Seynt Omers be whonnyn, all is gon, in my conceyt. Never the lesse they say there shuld come gret powere after the Emperorys son; but I be leve yt not, by cause they have ben so long of comyng.
And I pray you to recomaunde me unto Sir Tyrry Robsert, and that yt plese you to lete hym knowe of your tydyngs, and Hour Lord have you in His kepyng.
At Calais, the Sunday next after Hour Lady the Assumpsion.
[Footnote 296-1: [From Fenn, ii. 250.] The events referred to in this letter prove that it was written in the year 1477.]
[Footnote 296-2: Between 5 and 6 English, and equal in value to upwards of 20 at this present time, apparently a great price for a hobby.--F.]
[Footnote 297-1: Margaret, sister to Edward IV., widow of Charles the Bold, Duke of Burgundy.]