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NO. 46 




I I/ 
















[NO. XLVI.] 






THOMAS AMYOT, ESQ. F.R.S., F.S.A. Director. 














WILLIAM J. THOMS, ESQ. F.S.A., Secretary. 

The COUNCIL of the CAMDEN SOCIETY desire it to be under- 
stood that they are not answerable for any opinions or observa- 
tions that may appear in the Society's publications ; the Editors of 
the several works being alone responsible for the same. 


THE letters printed in the present volume have been derived 
from two sources. Forty-three of them have been communicated 
to the Camden Society by the rev. Edward Ryder, rector of 
Oaksey, in the county of Wilts : and the remaining fifty-two have 
been printed from a volume of transcripts formerly in the library of 
sir Peter Thompson, and now the property of the Camden Society 
by purchase from James Orchard Halliwell, esq. 

Of the letters for which we are indebted to Mr. Ryder, thirty-two 
are originals written wholly by the hand of queen Elizabeth ; six 
are originals of an official character written by a secretary but signed 
by queen Elizabeth ; two are contemporary copies of letters of king 
James, and two are drafts or copies in his majesty's handwriting. 

In what manner so large a collection of royal letters found their 
way into the possession of Mr. Ryder is partly accounted for as 
follows : 

At the period to which these letters relate it was the custom for 
royal secretaries, and also for many other public functionaries, to 
treat as their own all papers relating to that portion of the public 
business which they were officially called upon to transact A royal 
servant who advised the sovereign respecting a reply to a written 
communication generally retained afterwards, in his own possession, 
the communication which had been answered and the draft or copy 

CAMD. 8OC. b 


of the reply. And when he retired from office, he took away those 
papers with him. He looked upon them as his vouchers and 
evidences, the proofs and justifications of his public conduct. He 
deemed them as much his own as the title deeds of his private estate. 
It is in this way that so many collections of what are now more 
properly considered to be public documents came to be scattered 
over the country in the muniment rooms of noble families. In this 
way, also, and in consequence of the changes to which all families 
are subject, numbers beyond number of such papers have been 
totally lost. As soon as the persons who were primarily interested 
in these papers had passed away, the necessity for their preservation 
became less apparent. Damp and vermin laid siege to them ; fire 
destroyed masses incalculable ; and when changes of fortune or of 
residence rendered it imperative that such collections should be got 
rid of, they were either consigned to most ignoble uses, or divided 
and scattered, here and there, in foreign countries, or in the most 
unlikely nooks and corners of our own, and were thus again subjected 
to a multiplication of the same chances as before. Antiquaries soon 
became alive to the evils which necessarily resulted from such a 
state of things ; and it was by the purchase of such papers from care- 
less or needy possessors that sir Robert Cotton, the earl of Oxford, 
lord Shelburne, and other eminent persons of similar tastes, were 
enabled to get together the vast collections of state papers which 
exist in then* manuscript libraries. 

Many of the letters now communicated by Mr. Ryder bear 
obvious marks of having passed through the hands of official persons. 
Written on the backs of some of them are memoranda of what may 
be supposed to be the day either of date or receipt (pp. 39, 41, 49 
51). On others the indorsement states not only the day but also the 


mode of the receipt, as at p. 45, " Received 8th February, 1586, by a 
post ; " at p. 67, " 1591, 3 November. Delivered by Mr. Bowes ; " at 
p. 70, "Delivered by Roger Ashton, 28th January, 1591; " at p. 75, 
"K. Scotland. 1592, presented by Mr. Bowes, 3 Junij. ; " and 
p. 80, " Delivered by the lord Borough, the 16th of March, 1593." 
But the indorsements which are most to our purpose occur at p. 25, 
" Copy of the king his letter to [the] queen of England, 20 December, 
1685," and at p. 93, " Sent to me to be presented to his majestic at 
Tliirlestane, 19th October, 1593." 

These indorsements may be taken to indicate, in the case of the let- 
ters of queen Elizabeth, that, after they had been presented to king 
James, and, in the case of the copies of James's letters, that, after their 
tenor had been determined upon with his majesty, they were retained 
by some official person, or by some succession of official persons, 
according to the custom to which I have referred ; and the mention 
of " Thirlestane " directs our attention to a family in which such 
papers were very likely to be found. 

The house that " stands on Leader side " needs no introduction to 
our Scottish readers ; but it may not be superfluous to remind the 
English members of the Camden Society, that Thirlestane is a chief 
seat of the Maitlands, an ancient family eminently conspicuous in 
the history of Scotland during the period to which these papers 
relate, and not less so in the history of England as well as of Scot- 
land, during the subsequent Stewart reigns. 

Sir Richard Maitland, of Lethington and Thirlestane, was ap- 
pointed one of the extraordinary lords of session in 1554, and one of 
the ordinary lords in 1561. He also held the office of keeper of the 
privy seal from 1562 to 1567. In the latter year he became totally 
blind. In spite of that infirmity he continued to execute his office 


of judge the very representative of Justice herself for many years, 
but the privy seal was handed over to the keeping of John Maitland, 
his second son. 

Of that eminent man, the Burghley of Scotland, as he has been not 
unaptly termed, it is scarcely necessary to say a word. During a 
period of nearly thirty years, he devoted himself to the double duties of 
judge and statesman. In the successive appointments of keeper of the 
privy seal, lord of session, secretary of state, and ultimately of lord 
chancellor, much of the most important business of Scotland passed 
through his hands. In 1590, he was created baron Maitland of 
Thirlestane, and at that place he died on the 3rd October, 1595. 

The chancellor's only son, John second lord Maitland, was created 
viscount Lauderdale in 1616, and earl in 1624. One striking 
anecdote will be a sufficient evidence of his character. D urine: the 


civil wars the charter chest of the Maitlands was buried, for safety' 
sake, in the earth. On the return of more peaceful times, or on the hap- 
pening of some necessity for a recurrence to the chest, it was brought 
forth from its place of concealment. But its contents were found to 
have been destroyed by the very means taken for their preservation. 
Damp had rendered them illegible and altogether useless. It 
chanced, that, long before, the earl had made a calendar of all his 
charters and writs documents of peculiar importance in those days. 
Such was the universal estimation in which the integrity of the earl 
was held, that the parliament of Scotland directed, without scruple, 
that his calendar should be accepted as evidence in place of the 
documents destroyed, and ordered the clerk-register to authenticate 
it accordingly.* 

The first earl's eldest son, another John Maitland, was born on the 

* Crawford's Peerage of Scot. p. 253. 


24th May, 1616. His reputation presents in many respects a 
decided contrast to that of his father. In early life he was a 
covenanter. At the battle of Worcester he was taken prisoner 
fighting on the side of Charles II. He was released from a nine 
years' imprisonment in the Tower by general Monk. The Restora- 
tion placed liim in the foremost rank of public men. Pepys has 
registered that lord Lauderdale declared that he had rather hear a cat 
mew than listen to the best music in the world ; * and others may feel 
inclined to attribute to him all the consequences which Shakspere 
predicates of such a disposition. He figured in the Cabal ministry. 
He was created duke of Lauderdale. He continued for many years 
in the supreme direction of the affairs of Scotland, which he 
governed upon principles which were universally unpopular. He 
died, out of favour and neglected, on the 24th August, 1682. 

The many and long-continued public employments of this distin- 
guished family render it extremely likely that such letters as those 
now published may have found a way into their possession. 
The memorandum which has been quoted respecting Thirlestane 
points directly to the chancellor. And the supposition that these 
have been Maitland papers is rendered almost conclusive by tlus 
circumstance, that the only other papers of the same kind wliich are 
in the possession of Mr. Ryder are a considerable collection of 
original letters addressed to John duke of Lauderdale, with many 
copies of letters written by him in his capacity of secretary for 

On the authority of these facts, I will take it for granted that the 

* " Strange to hear my lord Lauderdale say himself that he had rather hear a cat mew 
than the best music in tin- world ; and the better the music the more sick it makes him; 
and that of all instruments he hates the lute most, and next to that the bagpipe." 
Pepys's Diary, iii. 246. 


Ryder MSS. now published have been handed down tlirough the 
Maitlands of Thirlestane. It remains that I should indicate in what 
manner papers which once belonged to that family have turned up, 
after the lapse of nearly three hundred years, in a secluded parson- 
age in North Wilts. 

With all his political faults which the present writer would be 
the last person in the world to defend the duke of Lauderdale 
proved himself to be a Maitland by his love and patronage of litera- 
ture. In that respect this family is singularly eminent. Sir Richard 
Maitland, himself a poet, is now principally known as the great pre- 
server of the ancient poetry of Scotland. The chancellor exhibited 
the family taste by poetical compositions of his own, not only 
in Latin but also in the vernacular language of his day. The first 
earl, as we have seen, had antiquarian knowledge enough to make 
calendars of ancient charters. Another Richard Maitland, to whom 
we shall allude hereafter, made a translation of Virgil which 
furnished many lines to Dryden, and collected a library which, in 
the judgment of Evelyn, was of exceeding value. And even the 
vindictive, furious duke, the reckless, unscrupulous politician, set 
great store upon a choice and splendid library of printed books, and 
added to that taste for ornamental decoration and the fine arts, of 
which the evidence still exists at Ham House and Helmingham, a 
love for old MSS., of which he possessed a most valuable col- 
lection, probably partly inherited and partly acquired. In such a 
family letters of queen Elizabeth and king James seemed safe. 

The duke's brother Charles, who was his successor in his earldom, 
was probably in needy circumstances. Evelyn writes to Pepys in 
August, 1689, that the duke's collection of books and MSS. still 
remained entire, but was for sale in the hands of a person who had 


advanced money upon it In May, 1690, the printed books were 
sold by auction in London in two sales. The first sale consisted of 
the French, Italian, and Spanish books, and began on the 14th May. 
The second sale comprised the English books, and began on the 27th 
of the same month. The books are described, both by Evelyn and 
in the sale catalogue, as choice and curious copies, bound with true 
bibliomaniacal sumptuousness. The collection of MSS. remained 
unsold for some time longer. 

In 1691 Charles earl of Lauderdale died. He was succeeded by 
his son Richard, who at the revolution of 1688 had taken the side of 
the exiled sovereign, and had followed him into France. Richard 
earl of Lauderdale was the translator of Virgil, and the collector of 
MSS. before mentioned ; a man likely to estimate, even beyond its value, 
such a library of MSS. as that which belonged to the duke. But when 
he succeeded to the earldom he was living at St. Germains in great 
poverty. Although an exile for the cause of James II., he was out of 
favour with his stubborn master, who despised and resented his concilia- 
tory advice. The whole fortunes of the family seemed to have suffered 
a total eclipse ; and one learns without surprise, that, at length, the 
duke's collection of MSS. was sold by auction in London in January, 
1691-2. A copy of the sale catalogue, purchased out of the Heber 
library by the right honourable J. G. Craig, was contributed by him 
to the Bannatyne Miscellany. It does not contain any notice of the 
letters now published, nor of the other MSS. in the possession of Mr. 
Ryder. They were of too recent interest to be made the subject of 
a sale ; but the same storm which scattered the other MSS. of this 
family, no doubt drove those in which we have an interest from their 
resting-place. It is a wonder that any of them were preserved. 

Mr. Ryder, formerly of the Charter House, father of the rev. 


Edward Ryder, was a man of high eminence as a solicitor in London 
during the latter half of the last century. He died in the year 1839 
at the age of 97. The papers now published, together with the 
others remaining in his son's possession, belonged to Mr. Ryder of the 
Charter House for a very long period. He set great store by them, 
and often exhibited to his friends the royal letters which are among 
them as very important and interesting curiosities. They were in 
his possession as long back as any person now living can remember. 
But how they came into his possession, or whether those which he 
acquired are all that were preserved, is not known. Mr. Ryder was 
professionally employed by many noble and eminent Scottish families, 
but whether he acquired these papers through any of his Scottish 
clients, or by purchase, or in what other manner, is utterly unknown. 
The high character which he is universally known to have maintained, 
during a life prolonged far beyond the ordinary average of mortality, 
is a sufficient guarantee for his having acquired them honourably. 
On the death of Mr. Ryder of the Charter House, they descended 
to his only son, the gentleman to whom the Camden Society is now 
indebted for the use of them. 

Respecting the Thompson MS. a comparatively few words will 
suffice. It is a quarto volume of transcripts written in a modern 
hand, and entitled " State Papers in the Time of Queen Elizabeth and 
King James the 1st; in the collection of Sir Peter Thompson, 
F.R.S." The volume contains transcripts of many other letters 
besides those now published, all of them connected with king James, 
and also eight papers respecting the execution of Mary queen of 
Scots. The title page must not be understood to mean that the 
original papers from which these transcripts were made were in the 
YK>ssession of sir Peter Thompson. Certainly that was not the case. 


The originals of several of the letters transcribed into this MS. are 
in the Cotton collection ; others are in the State Paper Office ; others, 
it is believed, are at Hatfield ; and others are in the possession of Mr. 
Ryder. The volume was no doubt made up by some transcriber 
employed by sir Peter Thompson from MSS., whether copies or 
originals, which chanced to be accessible to him. Sir Peter Thomp- 
son was a Dorsetshire antiquary in the eighteenth century. He 
was born at Poole in 1698 and died there in 1770. He acquired 
a fortune in London as a Hamburgh merchant, and, chancing to 
be high-sheriff of Surrey on the occurrence of the rebellion in 1745, 
carried up a loyal address to king George II. and was knighted. Sir 
Peter was a fellow of the Royal Society and of the Society of Anti- 
quaries, and was a collector of MSS. chiefly relating to Dorsetshire. 
But his valuable library and MSS. have all been scattered. He 
bequeathed them to his kinsman and heir, a captain Peter Thomp- 
son of the Surrey militia, by whom a portion was sold shortly after 
sir Peter's death. The remainder was dispersed by Evans of Pall 
Mall on the 29th April, 1815. The MS. from which we have 
printed was probably the second article in lot 953 in the sale at 
Evans's, described in the catalogue as " State Papers collected by 
Cole, manuscript ; and State Papers in Elizabeth and James I. MSS." 

The letters which have been brought together from these two 
sources extend from 1582 to 1603, and touch more or less upon 
every important public incident which occurred in Scotland during 
those twenty eventful years. Considerable difficulty has been found 
in arranging the letters in chronological order with any thing like abso- 
lute certainty, from two causes which apply to all queen Elizabeth's 
private letters ; one, that she seldom or never dated a letter ; 
the other, that she often wrote in a style so involved and intricate, 
and that her allusions to events and persons were covered with such 

CAMD. soc. c 


a cloud of words, that it is occasionally difficult to penetrate to the 
exact person or event alluded to. No letter has been placed in 
chronological order but for reasons which perfectly satisfied the 
editor. Those to which he was unable to assign a date which 
was satisfactory to himself, he determined to throw into an appendix. 
Farther consideration has enabled him to fix or approximate to the 
dates of two or three of the letters in the appendix, but this 
occurred too late for the letters to be inserted in their proper order. 
An accidental mistake, also, which happened after the book had gone 
to press, has thrown two or three letters into the appendix, which 
ought not to have been there. In order to obviate any incon- 
venience which may thus arise, and render the information in the 
book as accessible as possible to inquirers, it is thought good to 
give a sort of brief index to the liistorical subjects to which the 
letters relate. 

Letters i. ii. and iii. (October 1582 to April 1583) relate to the 
government of Scotland, under the lords who were concerned in the 
Raid of Ruthven. That was an endeavour, it will be remembered, 
to free the country from the domination of the king's favourites 
Lennox and Arran. Queen Elizabeth had learnt from Robert Gary, 
that the heart of the young king was still set upon his minions, 
although upon his tongue there was nothing but a determination to 
be guided by the advice of Elizabeth. She at once hits the nail upon the 
head, and shows what accurate acquaintance she had with James's 
character and position, by advising him to take measures which would 
" show himself," as she says, " not to incline to make himself a party 
of any faction within his own realm, an inconvenience most dan- 
gerous either for himself or for any other prince to fall into, but 
to have a care as prince and sovereign among his subjects, to 
minister justice indifferently unto them, and to punish those that 


shall be found to have forgotten themselves in duty towards him- 
self." (p. 3.) 

Nos. iv. and v. (July 1583 and May 1584) were written after Arran 
had regained his ascendancy in the manner mentioned in p. 7. The 
points worthy of note are the profuseness of James's expressions of 
attachment to queen Elizabeth, and the title which he applies to her, 
" la bonne femme avec le chapeau rouge." (p. 9.) Elizabeth had a 
fancy for giving nicknames or familiar titles to those about her. 
Burghley was her " spirit ;" Hatton her " eyelids ;" Whitgift 
her "black husband;" Francis Bacon her "young lord chancel- 
lor ; " Walsingham her " moon ; " and there exist copies of two letters 
in which she addressed lord Mountjoy, then her deputy in Ireland, as 
" mistress kitchen-maid." * James probably adopted a designation 
which she had bestowed upon herself in some message sent to 
him through his ambassador. 

In letters vi. and vii. (January or February 1584-5) the great 
queen makes her personal debut. Hitherto her letters had been 
formal official documents. Now a question occurs of personal inte- 
rest, and she herself steps forth upon the scene. For the first time, 
as it would seem, she writes a private autograph letter to the Scot- 
tish king. The master of Gray had dropped hints when in London 
respecting his knowledge of some conspiracy against Elizabeth. 
She is informed of what he had said. She sees him, but makes no 
allusion to the subject. No sooner has he left London than she posts 
off a messenger to James, who is charged to outstrip the Scottish am- 
bassador on his journey, and arrive in Edinburgh before lu'm. Her 
letter to James combines timidity, curiosity, and cunning. She 
intreats him to question the master secretly, as if she were not the 

* Cotton MS. Titus, C. VII. fo. 123. 


prompter, and to let her know the truth. The insignificant result 
appears in letter vii. 

Nos. viii. ix. and x. (June and July 1585) relate to the plot for 
the overthrow of Arran, carried on with the connivance of sir 
Edward Wotton. The first is a somewhat boyish letter of thanks 
from James for a gift of horses, and for the mission to him of such a 
pleasant companion as Wotton. In letter x. Elizabeth indicates her 
estimate of James's character by cautioning him, in her shrewd 
powerful way, against playing a double game with her. She 
reminds him of the proverb respecting two strings to a bow, and 
warns him that " princes' causes cannot be veiled so covertly that 
no intelligence may bewray them ; " " we old foxes," she says, " can 
find shifts to save ourselves by others' malice, and come by know- 
ledge of greatest secret, specially if it touch our freehold." (p. 17.) 

Nos. xi. xii. and xiii. (August 1585) relate to the death of lord 
Russell in a border fray. This nobleman was the sir Francis 
Russell who is mentioned in the ballad of The Raid of the Reidswire. 
See sir Walter Scott's Border Minstrelsy. (Poetical Works, ii. 15.) 
Nos. xiv. to xxi. and also Ixxxiv. (August 1585 to July 1586) 
relate to the league concluded between England and Scotland, and 
to a separate " instrument," by which Elizabeth was to bind herself 
to make James a certain annual allowance. The treaty for the 
league was interrupted by the overthrow of Arran's power, effected 
by the sudden return of the protestant lords who had taken refuge in 
England. Elizabeth's vindication of herself (No. xv.) against the 
possible charge of having given them any encouragement will be 
read with interest " Judge of me," she says, " as of a king that 
carries no abject nature, and think this of me, that rather than your 
danger, I will venture mine." (p. 23.) The discussion as to the 
"instrument" calls forth Elizabeth's scornful pleasantry : "Touch- 


ing an " instrument/' she says, " as your secretary terms it, that you 
desire to have me sign, I assure you though I can play of some, and 
have been brought up to know music, yet this discord would be so 
gross as were not fit for so well-tuned music." (p. 30.) 

No. xxii. (April 1586) is an official letter relating to the return to 
Scotland of Archibald Douglas, one of Darnley's murderers. 

Nos. xxiii. and xxiv. (October 1586) relate to Babington's conspi- 
racy, and Nos. xxv. to xxix. (Jan. 1587 to July 1588) to queen 
Mary's execution. Elizabeth rose to her full height in every time of 
difficulty or danger, and these letters, written in the very torrent and 
tempest of excitement, contain fervent impetuous passages, which 
could have fallen from few pens but hers. Before Mary's death 
we find her arguing strongly for its necessity. " By saving of her 
life, they would have mine. Do I not, trow ye, make myself a 
goodly prey for every wretch to devour ? Transfigure yourself into 
my state, and suppose what you ought to do, and thereafter weigh 
my life, and reject the care of murder, and shun all baits that may 
untie our amities, and let all men know that princes know best their 
own laws, and misjudge not that you know not" (p. 42.) " They 
will make," she writes in another letter, " that her life may be saved, 
and mine safe, which would God were true ! for when you make 
view my long danger indured these four well nigh five months 
you will grant with me, that if need were not more 
than my malice, she should not have her merit." (p. 44.) After 
the execution, she exclaims with the earnestness of a dreadful self- 
deception, " God, the searcher of all hearts, ever so have misericorde 
of my soul, as my innocency in that matter deserveth, and no other- 
wise ; which invocation were too dangerous for a guilty conscience." 
(p. 48.) 

Nos. xxx. xxxi. xxxii. and Ixxxv. (August to October 1588) relate 


to the Armada. No. xxxi. is, perhaps, the noblest letter of the whole. 
It has been printed before, from a copy in the Cotton Library, but 
very imperfectly. Mr. Ryder has the original, and we have not 
scrupled therefore to print it again (as we trust) with more accuracy. 

No. xxxiii. xxxiv. xxxv. and Ixxxix. relate to James's marriage 
and journey to Denmark for his bride, on which occasion, it may be 
worth noting, he was accompanied by chancellor Maitland. These 
letters abound in stirring and emphatic passages. At p. 59, writing 
in reference to a proposal for a peace with Spain, queen Elizabeth 
thus makes mention of her quarrel with Philip II. " My wrongs be 
such as nature of a king ought rather, for their particular, die than 
not revenge, yet the top of my courage shall never overstretch my 
heart from care of Christian blood, and for that alone no fear of 
him I protest before God from whom [proceed] both just quarrel 
[and] faithful subjects, and [who] valiant acts, I doubt not, will 
defend, yet, am I thus content that you shall follow the well-devised 
method ; and, if he will give plain grant without a guileful meaning, 
I will make known that in me the lack of so good a work shall never 
be found." 

With No. xxxvi. commences a series of letters relating to James's 
conduct towards the earl of Huntly and the other Roman Catholic 
lords who for many years were perpetually plotting to betray their 
country into the hands of Spain. The English ministers, more clear- 
sighted and more patriotic than James, watched these noble con- 
spirators with the eyes of hawks, and by intercepting letters and 
messengers, from time to time, unravelled enough of their dealings 
to have convinced any one but James. For a long time he believed 
that the notion of any such design was merely an English device to 
sow discord between himself and his friends. And when, at length, the 
truth became too apparent to admit of denial, his childish fondness 


for some of the very persons who were striving to ruin him involved 
his country in troubles and bloodshed, and called down upon him 
many an indignant remonstrance from his neighbour queen, who, 
" Cassandra-like, was never credited till the mishap had chanced." 
(p. 70.) Letters xxxvi. xli. xlii. xlv. 1. li. liii. Ivii. Iviii. 
Ixxxvii. Ixxxviii. xci. and xcv. (1589 to 1595), relate to this 
subject. Compelled, over and over again, to take the field against 
his " Spaniolised rebels," James did so ultimately with effect, to the 
great joy of the Scottish Protestants and of Elizabeth. Among 
these letters are some of the best both of Elizabeth and James. 
Nos. 1. and liii., James's defences of his own feeble policy, are certainly 
clever plausible letters. But for Elizabeth's replies, especially the 
one which we have taken the liberty to print in a note at p. 98, from 
Tytler's History of Scotland, they might have passed muster. Her 
majesty unravels king James's fallacies, and sets before him his true 
policy, in a very powerful way. 

Nos. xliv. xlix. liv. Iv. and Ivi. (1592 to 1594) relate partly to 
the subject last mentioned, but principally to BothwelFs mad freaks. 
The last three of them are enlivened by a little dispute between 
James and his awful correspondent, originating in his misappropriation 
of a passage in her letter printed in the note at p. 98, and his use of 
a quotation from Virgil which she construed into a threat. " That 
you may know," she tells him in her usual impressive way, " I am 
that prince that never can endure a menace at my enemy's hand 
much less of one so dearly treated I will give you this bond ; that 
affection and kind treatment shall ever prevail, but fear or doubt 
shall never procure aught from me." (p. 104.) 

Nos. Ix. Ixi. and Ixii. (1596), transfer us from the region of 
history to that of romance. The story of Kinmont Willie (Scott's 
Border Minstrelsy, Poetical Works, ii. 32) stands before us in a 


reality scarcely less interesting than the rude lines of the picturesque 
and exciting ballad. " Shall any castle or habitacle of mine," ex- 
claims Elizabeth, " be assailed by a night-larcyn, and shall not my 
confederate send the offender to his due punisher? Shall a friend 
stick at that demand that he ought rather to prevent ? The law of 
kingly love would have said c nay.'"(p. 115.) "Commissioners I 
will never grant for an act that he cannot deny that made : for what 
so the cause be made no cause should have done that" (p. 116.) 
She professes that she will not believe that James will " weigh so the 
balances awry as that a mean man's taking whether right or wrong 
should weigh down the poise that our treacherous castle's-break 
should have no redress." (ibid.) James ultimately found out that he 
had mistaken her majesty's meaning, and consented to her demand. 

Nos. Ixiv. and Ixv. (1598) relate to an appeal made by James to 
his parliament for money to enable him to send ambassadors to 
foreign countries in order to secure their friendship, and, if necessary, 
their support in his claim to the succession to the English throne. 
The subject was a peculiarly distasteful one to Elizabeth, and his 
speech was perhaps a little misreported. It called forth an angry 
letter, to which James made a successful because a temperate reply. 
Both will be found characteristic and interesting. 

Nos. IxvL to Ixix. and part of Ixxii. (1598 to 1600) relate to an 
accusation made against James by a miscreant named Valentine 
Thomas. He accused the Scottish king of being party to a design 
against the life of Elizabeth. James thought it of great moment to 
have from Elizabeth a formal public disclaimer of her giving any 
credit to the accusation. She charged James, " in God's name, to 
believe that she was not of so viperous a nature [as] to suppose, or 
have thereof a thought against him," but did not altogether satisfy him 
in reference to the formal instniment which he desired. 


During the last year or two of Elizabeth's life, the chief inter- 
course between the courts of England and Scotland had reference 
to the succession. James sent messengers to England upon mere 
simulated pretexts, their real object being, to make their master 
secure with the English nobility. The jealous queen was too con- 
scious of her own infirmities, and too quick-sighted, not to pierce 
through the alleged pretences, and every now and then the 
decaying embers of her glorious life blazed forth after their old fiery 
manner. At one time, James was called upon to defend himself 
against a charge of having prepared her funeral before the time 
(p. 132), and at another, he was shrewdly warned that a bird of the 
air would carry news of feigned practices to an honest king (p. 135J. 
In February 1601-2, when James apprises her of a rumour that a 
fresh armada was fitting out in the ports of Spain, and offers 
her with eager zeal the services of his subjects, she writes in ill 
health more calmly and quietly than was usual to her, although 
the mere allusion to a meditated invasion calls up the spirit of 
1588. " I nothing fear," she says, "though they came, as nothing 
doubting but their speed should be as shameful to them as the 
precedent hath been." (p. 143.) Another subject of correspondence 
at this time, was a scheme set on foot by James, for a league 
of England, France, and Scotland, against Spain, which was 
mixed up, oddly enough, with a proposal for friendship between 
James and the Pope, on condition that prince Henry were sent to 
Rome for education. Neither project was, probably, seriously 
intended, but both furnished pretences for constant communication 
with England, which was all that James desired. Letters Ixxvii. to 
Ixxxii. (1602) relate to these subjects, and they are appropriately 
followed, and the correspondence closed, by Ixxxiii. which is, perhaps, 

CAMD. soc. d 


the last letter of importance that queen Elizabeth wrote. It has been 
printed by Mr. Tytler from a copy in the State Paper Office, but as 
it occurs in our Thompson MS. and is strictly connected with the 
subject of the previous letters, we have not thought it worth while to 
omit it merely on that account. It is full of the wonted fire. It 
would be difficult, indeed, to find more vigorous English, 

Besides these larger subjects, there are letters which have reference 
to other not less important matters. No. xxxvii. relates to the 
puritan reformers of the church of England, and their treatment by 
Elizabeth ; No. xxxviii. to the delivery of O'Rourke, an Irish rebel ; 
Nos. xxxix. xliii. and lii. relate to the embassies of Bowes ; xlvi. to 
that of lord Borough; xl. to border matters; xlvii. to James's 
answer to an application from Neville, earl of Westmoreland, " the 
first traitor," says Elizabeth, " that ever my reign had ;" Ixiii. is a 
friendly mediation between James and the Scottish kirk ; and Ixxxvi. 
a similar mediation on behalf of the Low Countries; Ixxiii. and 
Ixxiv. refer to Lodowick duke of Lennox and his visit paid to 
England in 1601 ; Ixxv. and Ixxvi. relate to offers of assistance in 
Ireland made by James in 1601 ; Ixx. is James's reply to Elizabeth's 
congratulations on his escape from the Gowrie conspiracy ; and xcii. 
is one of those foolish, amorous letters which Elizabeth was weak 
enough to permit her correspondents occasionally to address to her. 
Its composition was evidently a heavy tax upon James's pedantry. 

Some notion may be formed of the historical value of these letters 
from our brief indication of the subjects to which they relate. But 
they contain a great deal that is valuable, which can be learnt only 
from themselves. Not more than eight or ten out of the ninety-five 
are what is properly called State Papers. The rest are private 
letters, genuine out-pourings from the minds of the writers, and 


impressed with the stamp of the most unmistakeable individuality. 
Elizabeth is portrayed by herself in what she termed her own 
audacious words. It is easy to discover glaring faults in the rough 
energy of her style. Her precise thought is too frequently rather 
obscurely indicated, than exactly expressed, and her sentences are often 
left imperfect. When excited, a mass of meaning is condensed into 
a few words, and even then the writer seems in a hurry to get 
through, as if anxious that mind and pen might be free to rush 
onwards to some new portion of her subject. Her letters contain 
none of the pretty flowing elegances of sentiment and expression 
which now-a-days fall so gracefully from ladies' pens, but they are 
terse, emphatic, animated; they teem with a native vigour; they 
abound in homely, natural illustration; and are forcible, con- 
sistent utterances of an independent individual will. 

James's letters are not less characteristic. Now obsequious and 
coaxing, now pedantic, now plausible, now pert; in one or two 
instances, aiming at something like courtly gallantry and refinement ; 
but never rising either to dignity of feeling, or nobility of expression. 
On the one side, we have letters such as no one but Elizabeth ever 
wrote, and which every one who is acquainted with the subject will 
know to be Elizabeth's at a glance. On the other, we have com- 
positions, which, save for a few peculiarities of expression, might have 
been judged to have proceeded each of them from a different person. 
I would except No. xxvii. which is James's acceptance of Elizabeth's 
apology for putting his mother to death ; that I would fain hope 
nobody could have written but king James. Throughout these letters 
Elizabeth is, according to her own motto, semper eadem ; unyielding 
even to obstinacy. What is James's state of mind or condition at any 
particular time, can never be foretold. In his reign the variableness 


of Scottish affairs became proverbial. Elizabeth is perpetually 
alluding to it " One while," she writes in 1593, " I receive a writ 
of oblivion and forgiveness, then a revocation with new additions of 
later consideration ; sometimes, some you call traitors with proclaim, 
and, anon, there must be no proof allowed though never so apparent" 
Numbers of her letters contain similar expressions of astonishment at 
the rapidity with which change succeeded change in the kingdom 
unhappily subjected to her correspondent's sway. 

And this distinction between the general character of their letters 
leads us to notice a point of considerable historical importance on 
which these letters directly bear, and with the mention of which we 
wih 1 bring our remarks to a close. The policy of Elizabeth and her 
ministers towards Scotland is ordinarily represented in a way which 
is almost incredible. We are desired to believe that the course of 
conduct adopted by those shrewd, far-seeing persons, towards their 
neighbour nation, was uncertain as the wind ; that, heedless of con- 
sequences, and careless of principles, they upheld first one faction 
and then another, and were constant in nothing, save in a desire to 
profit by the strifes and embarrassments of the Scottish people. 
Elizabeth has been set forth in this respect as the very demon of 
discord, ever occupied maliciously in blowing coals of strife, which 
seldom needed encouragement in poor misguided Scotland. This 
view has been adopted by writers of both countries. By Scottish 
writers, partly, perhaps, because it tended to magnify the import- 
ance of their country. By English writers, because Scottish affairs 
have seldom been sought to be accurately understood. Upon 
this point we desire to see an entire revision of the historical evidence. 
All the evidence that we have examined, and certainly all that is 
contained in tlu's book, points to two principles which consistently 


regulated the English policy towards Scotland during the time of 
Elizabeth. The one was, a determination that no continental power 
should interfere by force of arms in Scottish affairs; the other, a 
similar determination to uphold protestantism and the protestant party, 
in opposition to that party which befriended Mary, and to that religion 
which Elizabeth (smarting under the dangers to which she was ex- 
posed by the papal excommunication) termed " Christian treason " 
(p. 91). The variableness and uncertainty which have been attri- 
buted to Elizabeth's policy are to be found only in that of James. 
Political inconsistency was contrary to her character and to the 
genius of her reign. From the hour of her accession, she was the 
head of protestant Europe. Wherever protestantism needed succour, 
England under Elizabeth was ready to give aid. That aid was 
given in France and in the Low Countries. So was it in Scotland. 
James's fickleness might occasionally render it necessary to change 
the particular direction in which the assistance was bestowed; but, so 
far as regards the evidence in the book now sent forth, it is clear, and 
we believe it will be found equally clear in whatever other quarter 
the subject is investigated, that so long as Elizabeth was on the 
tin-one, the principles we have stated guided the English policy to- 
wards Scotland, and were ever consistently maintained. 

One point in reference to Elizabeth's orthography ought to be 
borne in mind wliilst perusing such of the following letters as are 
printed from her originals. Her majesty made no difference in spelling 
between " the," the article, and " they," the pronoun. As she wrote, 
both those words were " the." This peculiarity is not quite invari- 
able, but it occurs so frequently that it may be termed her general 
rule. For example, " I doubt so much, that I wot not whether I 
dream, slumber, or hear amiss, when news was brought me t/ie 
[they] were in your bosom whom I have heard from yourself your 


heart abhorred. I thought [it] so strange, that I did suppose the 
lengths of miles betwixt us might make way to untrue leasings 
enough, and scarce could afford my belief the grant to trust it" 
(p. 85). Her majesty's orthography is often very strange, but we 
are not aware of any other peculiarity that will render her letters 
difficult to be read. We have endeavoured, in accordance with the 
rule of the Camden Society, to present her exact spelling, which in a 
first publication is, in our judgment, the best course. It promotes 
accuracy, by fixing the editor's attention upon his MS.; it renders 
the publication almost in the nature of a fac-simile, and therefore, a 
better substitute for the original in case it should happen to be lost ; 
and it preserves personal peculiarities, which although minute are 
not altogether without interest. When Elizabeth writes " swarve," 
" desarve," " aduansing," " skars " (for scarse), " wacking" (for 
waking), and "vacabond;" or James "aither," " yow," "airt," and 
" uillaine ; " or Charles I. " Agust," pronounced " agust ; " we can 
scarcely doubt that we are informed of the very way in which those 
words ordinarily fell from the royal lips. 

The Camden Society is especially indebted to two gentlemen in 
connection with this publication : i. To sir Archer Denman Croft, 
baronet, a member of the Society, who, being on a visit to his 
relative Mr. Ryder at Oaksey rectory, made himself acquainted with 
the letters in Mr. Ryder's possession, and first suggested the idea of 
their publication ; and ii. to Mr. Ryder himself, who has facilitated 
the publication in the kindest possible manner, by permitting the 
editor to have the freest access to the original MSS. It is to be 
hoped that at some future time he will allow the Society to make 
known to the world the contents of his collection of Lauderdale 

J. B. 










No. I. 



Letter of advice to the Scottish king, written upon the return of sir 
George Cary, the special ambassador sent by Elizabeth into Scotland 
on the occurrence of the Raid of Ruthven. 

" The late accident" or " alteration" happened in Scotland, which is alluded to 
in the following letter, was the celebrated Raid of Ruthven. Scotland was at that 
time divided into two great parties. One of them believed that the welfare of the coun- 
try was to be promoted by close alliance with France, the partial restoration of queen 
Mary, and the reascendency of Roman Catholicism. The other party was equally strenu- 
ous for friendship with England, the maintenance of the youthful monarch on the throne 
in opposition to his mother, and the depression, or if possible the extirpation, of the an- 
cient faith. Each of these parties governed the country alternately through the medium 
of a succession of royal favourites. The king's present favourite was Esme Stewart, duke 
of Lennox, who threw all his influence into the scale of Roman Catholicism, and plotted to 
perpetuate his authority by the destruction of the earls of Gowrie, Mar, and other leaders 
of the protestants. Scorning to be tamely sacrificed, the protestant noblemen determined 
to save themselves, and to bring about the ruin of Lennox, and an alteration in the govern- 
ment, by obtaining possession of the person of the sovereign. An opportunity for effecting 
their purpose was afforded by James's acceptance of an invitation to visit Ruthven castle, 
the seat of the earl of Gowrie. When the visit had been paid, and James desired to 
quit the castle, his egress was refused. The master of Glammis interposed his burly per. 
son before the royal youth, and coarsely commented upon the tears which burst forth 
upon being treated with such indignity, in the well-known words, " Better bairns greet 
than bearded men." Of course Elizabeth favoured the party of the Ruthven conspirators* 



as that which was most friendly to England. She sent sir George Gary and Robert Bowes 
into Scotland to communicate with them upon their success, and to endeavour to wean 
James from his fondness for the now banished Lennox. Gary had an audience with the 
Scottish sovereign on the 12th of September, 1582. But, so far as James was concerned, he 
was unable to execute his commission with much effect. With more firmness than might 
have been anticipated, either from his general character or his age, the boy-sovereign 
warmly repelled Gary's accusations against his favourite, and indignantly declared his 
disbelief of the charges preferred against him. Bowes remained at Edinburgh as Eli- 
zabeth's ambassador in Scotland, but Gary returned to London very shortly after his inter- 
view with James. The following letter was addressed by Elizabeth to James upon re- 
ceiving Gary's report of his mission. The conclusion and signature are in Elizabeth's au- 

The return to Scotland of the earl of Angus, which is alluded to in the last paragraph of 
this letter, was a result of the interference of Gary and the success of the Ruthven conspi- 
rators. He had lived in England in banishment since the death of his uncle the regent 
Morton in June, 1581. In illustration of the circumstances alluded to in this letter, refe- 
rence may be made to Bowes's Correspondence, p. 179 ; Tytler's Scotland, viii. 128 ; Ro- 
bertson's Scotland, book vi. 

Right highe right excellent and mightie prince, and deerest bro- 
ther and cosin, We have nowe, uppon the returne to our presence of 
our servaunt sir George Gary, understood particularlie by his reporte 
in howe good parte youe acceptid our late sending him and our ser- 
vaunt Bowes unto youe, to use their best meanes and indevour in 
our name to staie that no dainger or preiudice might grow by the late 
altera9on happenid in your realme, ether to your owne person or to 
your state, interpreting the same to precede (as indeede youe have 
iust cause so to thinck y t) of our synceare well meaning towards youe, 
which doth geue us iust cause to thinck our good will and care had 
of your safety well bestowed ; and althoughe we haue already geuen 
expresse commandement unto our seruaunt Bowes, to signifie unto 
youe howe greatlie this your kind and frendlie requitall of our well 
wishing unto youe did lyke us, yet could we not rest satisfied unles 
we did also take knowledge therof, and yeld youe speciall thancks for 
the same by theis our letres. 

And for that our said servaunt hath also declared unto us, that in 
toeken of the great confidence you repose in our professed frendship 
and good will towards youe, youe meane hereafter to depend much 


uppon our good advice and counsell for the selling of your affaires 
and the ordering of such causes of importaunce as do neerest concerne 
youe, we cannot but most frendlie and willinglie accept to yeld unto 
you, in that sorte also, the best helpe and furtheraunce we can, to 
the satisfyeing of your expecta9on : wherein, for that the late acci- 
dent happenid in your realme doth nowe minester unto us fitt occa- 
sion to delyuer unto youe our best advice and counsell, what we 
thinck meete to be don by youe for the present staie of such further 
inconveniences as maie hereafter ensue therof, we would not omitt to 
let youe understand, that we thinck yt wil be a very good and suer 
coorse for youe in this case, to haue the matter brought to his due 
triall and examinacon in your intendid conven9on, to th'end that 
that partye that shal be found faultye, maye ether receaue his deseruid 
punishment, or tast of your clemencye, as by youe shalbe thought 
meete, and that the other maie, for their better satisfaction, be cleerid 
from any blame that otherwies shall perhappes hereafter be undeser- 
uedlie cast upon them, by thos that are unacquaintid with the 
state of the cause ; which manner of proceeding, besides that yt will 
faule out greatlie to the generall satisfaction of the world, in a matter 
subiect to so many dyverse iudgementes and construccions, youe shall 
also therebie shewe yourselfe not to inclyne to make yourself a partye 
of any faction witliin your owne realme (an inconvenience most daun- 
gerous ether for yourself or for any other prince to faule into), but to 
have a care, as prince and soueraigne among your subiects, to mi- 
nister iustice indifferentlye unto them, and to punishe thos that shal 
be found to have forgotten themselues in duty towardes you. In so 
doing, youe shall cleere and remove all daingers and inconveniences 
that maie hereafter followe by a kind of smothering of such dainger- 
ous sparks that of late have appeared witliin your realme, and maye 
in tyme breake out into a more daingerous flame, yf yt be not ad- 
visedlie preventid : wherein wee geue youe no other advice then we 
ourselves would put in execu9on, yf the state of our realme stood in 
lyke termes, of whos well doing we pray you to assure yourselfe we 
are no lesse carefull then of our owne. 


We maye not here forget to yeld youe also our speciall thanckes 
for your most frendlie yelding to gratefye us in our request for our 
cousin th'earle of Angus, in whom yf we had not found such zeale 
and constant dutyfull affection towards youe as gave us iust cause to 
thinck the poore gentleman worthy to be restored agayne to your 
good opinion and favor, we would neuer have taken uppon us to haue 
recommendid him unto youe, but would rather, insteede of well wesh- 
ing unto him, haue bent our selues to the uttermost against him. 

And so, right high right excellent and mighty prince, we leave 
you to the protection of Almighty God. Geuen under our signet, at 
our castell of Wyndsor, the xviij th of October, in the xxiiij th yere of 
our reigne. 

Your verey lovinge sistar and cousin, 
[Addressed,] ELIZABETH R. 

To the right highe right excellent and 

mightie prince, our deerest brother 

and cosin, the king of Scottes. 

No. II. 



William Davison is about to return to England James professes sin- 
cere good will towards Elizabeth is about to send colonel Stewart 
on an embassy to the English court. 

The party of France was stunned by the daring suddenness with which the Raid of 
Ruthven was accomplished. The failure of a too-early attempt at a counter-movement 
completed their overthrow, and for several months the revolution was acquiesced in 
throughout Scotland. The kirk was triumphant, and James was compelled to act 
and acted to admiration the part of cordial concurrence in all the measures of the 
English and protestant party. About Christmas 1582 La Mothe Fenelon, so long the 
French ambassador in England, was sent by his sovereign into Scotland to lay the foun- 
dation of a new attempt for James's recovery of freedom. His instructions directed 
him, 1 . To make inquiry into James's actual situation ; and, 2. To endeavour to 


bring about an arrangement for a junction of Mary and James in the government of 
the kingdom. Elizabeth could not with decency, as Robertson remarks, refuse La Mothe 
Fenelon liberty to execute his commission, but she sent Davison with him to watch and 
thwart his movements. The two ambassadors arrived together in Edinburgh in January 
1582-3, and at the end of the same month, Fenelon was joined by De Menainville, a man of 
a bolder spirit. The watchfulness of Davison and the influence of the church prevented 
the French ambassadors from being able to effect any immediate change, and, after a resi- 
dence of nearly three months in Edinburgh, Davison was recalled. The following letter 
was sent by James to Elizabeth on Davison's return. 

Madam and dearest sister, The bearer heirof, your servand,* re- 
commendit to us by youre letres brocht be him, lies scene the progres 
of materis heir sen his cumming, sa specially as we will forbear to re- 
pete thame, in all quhilkis we affirme he hes behaved himself very 
discreitlye, and to our gude lyking. For our self, in summe, we 
praye youe, dearest sister, to thinke and esteeme of us as of him that 
ye have assuretly power of in all thingis tending to youre honour, 
suirtie, and contentment as of ony levand ; and sa, leuing the further 
declaration of our mynde to the present bearar, and to oure nixt mes- 
senger, coronel Stewart, a man earnestly affected to the intertine- 
ment of our amytie, we commit you to God. At Halyrud house, 
the xxix. of March, 1583. 

Your maist loving and affectionat brother and cousing, 


No. III. 



The king has sent two ambassadors into England, but colonel Stewart, 
the bearer of this letter, is especially charged to communicate with 
Elizabeth in private on the king's behalf. 

Colonel Stewart, the" next messenger," promised to be sent to England at the end of the 

* Davison left Edinburgh, on his return to England, on the day following the date of 
this letter. Bowes Correspondence, p. 397. 


last letter, was William Stewart, a son of " the good" lord Ochiltree, and brother to James 
Stewart the newly created earl of Arran. He was also brother-in-law to John Knox, 
whose second wife, Margaret Stewart, was colonel Stewart's sister. He was colonel of the 
king's body-guard, and was probably the only person with whom at this time the king 
communicated confidentially. His embassy to England, to which the following letter re- 
lates, was now the turning point of James's conduct and policy. In the circumstances of 
his kingdom he could not stand alone. Help from one or other of the powers who alter- 
nately swayed the fortunes of unhappy Scotland was absolutely necessary for him. Not- 
withstanding he had managed to drop into Fenelon's ear a secret assurance that, " al- 
though he had two eyes, two ears, and two hands, he had but one heart, and that was 
French" (Tytler, viii. 154); and, notwithstanding also his anxiety to take advantage of the 
scheme for his liberation, which, in spite of Davison, De Menainville had concocted, James 
felt the infinite danger to his throne and hopes if French assistance were to be followed by 
even a partial restoration of his mother or of his mother's faith. He determined, before he 
gave further encouragement to France, to endeavour to come to a thorough understanding 
with Elizabeth. "With that view he despatched to Elizabeth colonel Stewart as his own 
ambassador, the Ruthven party joining with Stewart Mr. John Colville, who was an 
active partisan on their behalf. They are the " two gentlemen" mentioned in the following 

A madame ma sceur, la royne d'Angleterre. 
Madam ma soeur, Ayant despeche par deuerse uous ces deux gentilz 
homines, mes seruiteurs, pour traicter et negotier aueques vous une 
parfaicte et asseuree union et amitie entre nous et nos royaulmes, ie 
uous ay uoulu quant et quant adreser ce porteur en particulier, pour 
uous communiquer plus priuement mes bonnes et sinceres intentions 
en uostre endroit, uous priant de luy adiouster ferme foy comme feries 
a moy mesme, et d'y a porter de uostre part si bonne correspondence 
qui me puise rendre mutueellement asseure de uotre amiable et sin- 
cere disposition enuers mon bien et contentement, sur quoy me repo- 
sant, prieray Dieu, madame ma treschere soeur, de uous maintenir en 
sa sainte et digne garde. De mon palais d' Halyrud hous, ce 23 
d'Apuril, 1583. 

Uostre tres affectionnee frere et cousin, 



NO. IV. 


James thanks Elizabeth in terms of very ardent regard for her affec- 
tionate letters he reciprocates her affection, and ivishes there were a 
window in his breast that she might read his thoughts thanks her for 
offered advice in his very important affairs, and wishes he may be able 
to follow it he sent her a ring with the same intention with which she 
accepted it she has promised that she will believe nothing of him who 
sent the ring until she knows the truth from himself he assures her 
that he will do the same towards the good woman with tlie red bonnet. 

Colonel Stewart's embassy to England was not fruitless. He and his companion 
returned home with proposals for a league between the two countries, to be accom- 
panied by what James particularly stood in need of, a yearly pension of 10,000 crowns, to 
be paid to him by the English queen. They were also the bearers of a letter from Eliza- 
beth to James, full of flaming affection and excellent advice. But the Scottish court was 
in no humour, on Stewart's return, to enter upon the consideration of the proposed league. 
The French intrigue for James's recovery of his liberty had so far ripened that nothing was 
wanting for its completion but Stewart's presence and assistance. He reached Leith from 
England on the 7th June, 1583, just after the arrival of tidings that Lennox had died 
suddenly in France; an event which left Arran (Stewart's brother) without a rival in the 
favour of the king, and conspired with many other circumstances to hurry on the execution 
of the plot. On the 26th June the king rode from Falkland to St. Andrew's, on a visit to 
his grand-uncle the earl of March. On the day following his majesty was suddenly in- 
spired with a curiosity to view the castle, and took his way thither accompanied by some 
of his usual attendants. The king was no sooner within the castle walls than colonel 
Stewart shut the gates, and allowed no one to enter except those who were privy to the 
plot. The lords of the French party hastened to the assistance of the king ; Gowrie's prin- 
cipal supporters found it prudent to take to flight ; and the whole character of the govern- 
ment was at once altered without a blow being struck on either side. Bowes, the English 
ambassador, was as much taken by surprise as any one : he hurried to St. Andrew's, and 
found the king surrounded by the friends of his mother, and entirely governed by colonel 
Stewart. After a few days, the necessity for doing something to pacify Elizabeth was 
pressed upon the attention of the king's new advisers. The council replied with all courtesy 
to the English proposal for a national league, and James answered her majesty's affec- 
tionate letter, in terms equally affectionate, and no doubt equally sincere. The follow- 
ing is his letter. In a passage near the end there is a curious allusion to the queen by 
the title of la bonne femme avec le chapeau rouge. 

Madame ma soeur, Jay receu uostrc letre, par hi quclle F apercoy 


que, parmy uoztre doites* et sages propos, une si ardente bcneuolencc, 
et non feinte affection, se manifeste, tellement que ie suis tout inha- 
bile d' y faire responce par escript, beaucoupe moins le raquitter par 
mez faicts en effect ; mais le plaisir que i'y prens me contraint, puis 
que ie n'y puiz plus faire, de m'efforcer de uous de le repeter encore, 
que ie ne le puis faire si parfaictement comme uous Paues mez par 
escript, uous supleant, inadame, de uous monster aussi effectuell- 
ment moen droit comme uous 1'aues franchement promiz par escript ; 
mais estant assure qu'il n' y a person qui peult si amiablement metre 
para escript sans un ardent et interne affection qui y correspondast, 
beacoup moins un d'une si noble nature comme ie uous cognois 
d'estre, ie ne m'en ueux plus doubter ; mais, pour suiuray mon propos, 
ores la ou uous souhaitters au commencement de vostre letre, que 
vostre pensee peust estre aussi aisiment ueue que uostre uisage, et 
quatorsf (sans plus enuoier des embassadeurs) uous ne faudries point 
deuenir uous mesmes la ou ie uoiroye une ardante afection sans ma- 
cule, accompagnee demaint J autres signes de beneuolence et sincere 
amitie, tellement que ie suis du tout inhabile de uous raquitter tant ; 
seulement ie souphaitteray, comme fit un philosophe, qu'il yeust une 
fenestre en ma poietrine, par ou vous puissies aussi uoir ma pensee ; 
car la uous trouerries une acceptation entres bone part de uoz si gra- 
tieux et amiables ofres. Et quant a ce que uous ofrez de me donner 
uostre meilleur conseil en mes plus importantes afaires, en uous sou- 
haittant d'estre plus sage, pour cest effect, madame, uous naues point 
besoing de tellement souphaitter, mais iay bien besoign de me sou- 
phaitter abill d'effectter le conseil que [uous] me doneris, uous asseurant 
que ie suiurray plus volontiers le uostre que d'autruy qui soit au monde, 
non seulement pour vostre sagesse, qui uous rend apt a ce faire, mais 
aussi pour la fiddile affection qui 1'accompagnera. Et quant a ce que 
[vous] me mandezen si bone part, que uous receues labague que ie uous 
enuoyi, et subs quelles conditions, madame, la condition subs laquelle 

* So in the MS. perhaps for duites, in the sense of apt or skilful, 
f So in the MS perhaps for qu'alors. 
% So in the MS. perhaps for de tant. 


nous la prennet explique mieux mon intention que ie neuesse se en 
f'aire moy mesme, car ie uous 1'enuoye sus ceste mesme intention 
aueque laquelle uous 1'aues prise, uous supliant, aussi, madame, que 
quand quelques rapports uous uiendront de cesluy la qui uous a en- 
uoye la bague, uous resouuenies de la promese qu'il a faite par icelle, 
en ne les croyant point que uous n'en sachies la verite par luy mesme, 
en uous asseurant qu'il fera de mesme a la bone femme aueques Ie 
chapeau rouge. Ainsi, en priant Dieu de la conseruer en sa tres- 
sainte et digne garde, ie uous diz adieu. Du chasteau de Saint 
Andre ce neufieme de iullet, 1583. 

Uostre tres affectionne frere et cousin, 


No. V. 


18TH MAY, 1584. RYDER MSS. ELJZ. NO. 39. ORIG. 

Elizabeth will send an answer by a servant of her own to a request made 

by James. 

Within a few months after the Ruthven party were dispossessed of their ill-gotten au- 
thority, they entered into a conspiracy for its violent resumption. The new plot was dis- 
covered; Gowrie was beheaded for his share in it; the earls of Mar and Angus were 
compelled to seek refuge in England; and all the power of the state was confirmed more 
firmly than ever in the hands of the anti- English and anti-protestant earl of Arran. 
The defeat of the conspiracy was followed by a request from the king of Scotland to Eli- 
zabeth, that she would deliver into his hands the earls of Mar and Angus and the other 
rebel " lords of Scotland," who had found shelter in England. The following letter is 
Elizabeth's reply to that request. William Davison was " the servant" whom she sent to 
James in conformity with her promise in this letter, and Davison 's verbal answer to the Scottish 
king, refusing on Elizabeth's behalf to deliver up "the Scottish lords," may be seen in 
Tytler's Scotland, viii. 206. The words at the conclusion of this letter, " Your loving 
sister and cousin, if so well your merits shall require," together with the signature, are in 
the queen's autograph. 

Right excellent right highe and mightie prince, our deerest bro- 
ther and cousin, In our hartiest manner we commend us unto you. 
Uppon view of your late letter sent unto us by the bearer, your ser- 
vaunt, and uppon his reporte made unto us of the course of proceed- 

CAMD. soc. c 


ing there, we weare sorie to see the state of that realm reduced to so 
hard and perplexed termes ; and as towching the request conteynid 
in your said letter, after due considera9on had of the same, we meane 
to send a servaunt of our owne with our answer, which you shall 
fynd to be such as we in honnor maie give, and you in reason ought 
to be satisfyed withall; and so, right highe right excellent and 
mightie prince, our deerest brother and cousin, we commit you to 
the protection of Almightie God. Geven at our mannour of Gren- 
wich the xviij th of Maie, in the xxvj th yere of our raigne. 

Your lovinge sistar and cousin, if so wel your merites shal require, 



To the right highe and mightie prince 
our dearest brother and cousin the 
king of Scottes. 

No. VI. 



The queen wishes James privately to ask the master of Gray, upon his 
allegiance, whether he does not know the price of her blood^to be paid 
to her intended murderer by some of the king's " near-a-kin" and to 
send Jier an answer within three or four days after tlie master of 
Gray's return to Scotland. 

Arran's restoration to authority, confirmed as it was by the suppression of the Gowrie 
conspiracy, was followed by the most oppressive and palpable misgovernment. In opposi- 
tion to the opinions of the people, presbyterianism was made to yield to episcopacy ; the 
estates of the adverse party were confiscated and parcelled out among the earl's principal 
supporters; the king was kept immersed in the pleasures of the chase and of the table, 
and in other amusements in which his youthful majesty took delight; whilst the proud fa- 
vourite carried himself with almost regal state, and with a haughtiness most contemptuous 
and offensive. It was easy to foresee that such a state of things could not endure long. The 
person who led the way towards putting an end to it, was a youthful hypocrite who for some 
years after this time played a conspicuous part in the history of Scotland, the masterof Gray. 
Trusted by Mary, he betrayed her, as a means of securing favour with her son ; trusted by Ar- 
ran, he treacherously proposed to the English court subtle schemes for his patron's overthrow 


and the restoration of the banished lords. A mission to Elizabeth which was confided to 
Gray by Arran gave him a safe opportunity of secretly arranging his plot. His proposals 
were received favourably by the English ministers. The renewal of the league with England, 
which was one of the avowed objectsof Gray's mission, but which in all probability wasdecep. 
lively proposed by Arran , was eagerly caught at by the queen's government. Itwas determined 
that sir Edward Wotton, a man of varied talent, and especially likely to be acceptable to 
the king on account of his skill in all the sports of the field, should be sent into Scotland, 
publicly to settle the terms of the league, and privately to advance Gray's plot against 
Arran. To aid Wotton in the attainment of these double objects, many other means (some 
of which will appear hereafter) were devised for winning the heart of the king and 
undermining the power of his favourite. It would seem from the following letter, which 
was written after Gray had left the English court, and whilst he was on his way home to 
Scotland, that he mixed, when in London, in other plots than his own. Elizabeth was at this 
time exposed to many attempts upon her life, chiefly concocted amongst the persecuted 
Roman catholics. One had just come to light, in which the suggester was said to be Mor- 
gan, Mary's agent on the continent and a person deeply engaged in anti-protestant in- 
trigues, and the agent was Thomas Parry, who had been formerly in Elizabeth's household. 
The following letter may either refer to that conspiracy, or to the general belief amongst 
protestants that the Roman catholic powers were ready to give a reward to any person who 
would rid the world of the great upholder of protestantism. The letter is wholly in the 
queen's handwriting, but was omitted to be signed; perhaps purposely, on account of its 
secret character. 

I mynde not deale, my deare brother, as wise men commenly coun- 
sel, to try my trust with trifles first, and therby iuge of like event, 
but haue agried to make my first assay of your many promises and 
desires that you might knowe the way to please me most ; and therfor 
do require, that a question may, upon allegeance, be demanded by 
yourselfe of the mastar Gray, whether he knoweth not the prise of 
my bloude, wiche shuld be spild by bloudy hande of a murtherar, 
wiche some of your nere-a-kin did graunt. A sore question, you 
may suppose, but no other act than suche as I am assured he knowes, 
and therfor I hope he wyl not dare deny you a truthe ; but yet I be- 
seche you let it not seme to come from me, to whom I made no sem- 
blance but ignorance. Let him suppose that you receaued it elz- 
where. O most wicked treachere, to gusche the droppes of innocent 
bloud, yea, of suche as perhaps hath saued often thers ! As this 
toucheth me nearest, so use it with best commodity, and let the an- 
swer be s[)eded after a thre or foure dayes after his retournc. It 


may please you, aske it no sonar, lest he suspect it come of me, from 
whom, according to trust, let it be kept. 

Your most assured sistar and cousin, 

[ Unsigned]. 

God euer kepe you from al daungerous attempts, and graunt you 
many yeres to Hue and raigne. 

Au roy d'Escose, mon bon frere et cousin. 

No. VII. 



The queen has received the master of Gray's limping answer he 
does not say who bade him talk with Morgan, nor who was to have 
been the queerfs murderer Scottish persons should be forbidden to 
assemble in Ireland the banished lords have been directed to quit the 

The nature of Gray's answer to Elizabeth's question suggested in the last letter may be 
seen from the following. It may be inferred from it, that Gray had unquestionably held a 
conversation with Morgan upon the subject of Elizabeth's assassination. As Morgan was 
not, I believe, in England at this time, I rather incline to think these letters do not relate 
to Parry's plot, but to a presumed general intention to assassinate Elizabeth whenever a 
proper agent could be found . 

I haue, right deare brother, receaued your frendly and affectionat 
letters, in wiche I perceaue the mastar Grayes halfe, limping answer, 
wiche is lame in thes respectz : the one, for that I se not that he told 
you who bade him talke with Morgan of the price of my bloude, 
wiche he knowes, I am assured, right wel ; nor yet hathe named the 
man that shuld be the murtherar of my life. You wel perceaue that 
nothing may nearelar touche me than this cause, and therfor, accord- 
inge to the bond of nature and the promes of strikte frindeship, let 
me coniure you that this vilanye may be confest. I hope I may 


stand you in better sted than that you wyl shew you uncareful of 
suche a treason. 

And because I desiar that no cause be giuen of your part to make 
me, or the lokers on, to slandar your good wyl, I heare, out of my 
realme of Ireland, that Skotz assemble in great troupes. Giue you 
charge immediatly, I most hartely require you, that, upon paine of 
treason, the desist from suche action, and so shal you bind me to re- 
compence suche honorable traictment, 

And wher I perceaue that you expected the erles departur from the 
bordars, it is true, vpon my honor, that I dispached furthewith a 
charge unto them, wiche the answered, after a wekes leasur, that 
the wer so indetted to my subiectz that the could not, but I am sure 
by this time the ar departed. As for ther not banisment out of my 
realme, I haue, by my secretary, signified to the master Gray what 
reasons necessary to be considered moues me therunto, specially sins 
the offar to submit themselues to suffar as if the wer my subiectz of- 
fending me, and to take condigne pain if, while the bid in my gou- 
uernement, the disobay ther alegiance to you. And this, with the 
rest, I trust wyl content you, as one that I wyll take as great care of, 
for your honor and your surty, as whosoever may giue you more 
golden promes with leaden performance. 

I beseche you let your answer be retournid me with your best 
spede and most commoditye. Thus, not willing to molest you, I, 
with my humblest deuotion, intreat the Almighty to protect you from 
al inconveniens, and grant you many happy yeares. 

Your most assured sister and cousin, 

A monsieur mon bon frere et cousin le roy d'Escosse. 


No. VIII. 



The king thanks Elizabeth for her loving dispatch of his late ambassador 
the lord justice clerk, for sending to him so wise a gentleman as Ed- 
icard Wotton and so discreet a gentleman as Robert Alexander, as also 
for a present of horses and for loving letters; in return for all which 
he offers his person, and all that is his, to be used by her as a loving 
mother would use her natural and devoted child. 

We have seen that in pursuance of the determination of the English court to assist the 
master of Gray in his treacherous schemes for the overthrow of Arran, sir Edward Wotton 
was sent ambassador to James in April, 1585. The further to win the heart of the young mo- 
narch, Elizabeth wrote " loving letters" to him; treated sir Lewis Bellenden, the lord justice 
clerk, who visited England on a special embassy, with distinguished favour; and also for- 
warded to James, under the care of Robert Alexander, a present of eight couple of buck- 
hounds and some horses of peculiar beauty and value. No game could have been better 
played or have been more successful. Wotton made an easy conquest of the king's heart, 
the negotiation of the treaty went on merrily, and James poured forth his gratitude to Eli- 
zabeth in fervent expressions of devotion to her service. The following is one of his letters 
of thankfulness. 

Madame and dearest sister, I must most earnistly crave and be- 
seiche you to appardone me for my long delay of wry tting, in respect 
I thoclit youre ouin seruant Robert Alexander, the bearar heirof, 
fittest to be the carrier of it, for if I hadd als oft written thanks within 
this short space as ye furnishit subiect, than had I but importunatitt 
your eies with reading, and yit done nothing that had worthely re- 
quyted the great good will of such a prince as ye are ; quhomto I am, 
within their fiue dayes, in so manyfold wayes beholden. By no deidis 
(much less wryttes) I can worthely requyte your using of me. For, 
sett asyde youre louing dispatche, to my full contentement, of my 
lait ambassadoure, justice clerk, as also the directing towardis me of 
so honourable and so wyse a gentleman, so well affected to the amitie 
and so well thocht of by you, as Eduard Uotten, youre ambassa- 
doure, as also the directing since of so discreit a gentleman and so fitt 


for his ofice as your forsaid seruant Alexander, with a number of so 
faire and good horses as he brocht (the most acceptable present that 
euer came to me), as also your louing letters sent als uell by justice 
clerk as by youre ambassadure and Alexander ; sett asyde, I say, 
thise forsaid tokinnis and proofes of youre inuard freindship, your 
only memoriall tuching the horsis sent to me with youre forsaid am- 
bassadure hath more bound me unto you then any letteris, presentis, 
or deidis of amitie, that euer ye haue or coulde haue bestoued upon 
me ; for not only wayre the wordis thairof most louing, but also the 
purpois discouered such kinde cairfulness in you ouer me, as it 
seamid rather to haue proceidit from sum alter ego than from any 
strainge and forraine prince, quhich I can on no wayes requyte bot 
by ofring unto you my person, and all that is myne, to be used and 
imployed by you as a louing mother wold use hir naturall and 
deuoted chylde. Thus, praying you euer to use and imploy me so, 
I pray most humbly the creatoure, madame and dearest mother, to 
preserve you from all youre foes quhatsumeuir, to cast thaime in 
their ouin snayres, as he did Haman, and to increase your days in all 
honoure and happines, as they haue euer yet bene. From Dumferm- 
ling, the xx7. day of June, 1585. 

Your most louing and deuoted brother and sonn, 


Madame, I haue, according to my promeis in my last letter, bene 
trying out yone alledgit report of the lord Maxuellis concerning you, 
quhich, so farr as I can tray, uas indeid uanted of by him, as also 
that he had the lyke fauoure of me, both untreu, quhairof Houson on 
bouman, a servant of the lord Scroopis, gott moyen, by some that 
wayre about the sayd lord. He aduertissit Jonston of it. 


No. IX. 



TJie king reiterates his professions of good will, and prays the queen not 
to give attention to rumours to the contrary. 

This present shall seme, madame and mother, to assure you of 
the constancie of my professite good will in my letter with Alexan- 
der, and of the continuance of that promesit course in religion and 
league, as, also, it shall serue for a counterpoise to reportis maid, or 
to be maid, by any seditious fellows in the contrair of this preseding. 
Thus, praying you to contineu me in your good grace, and, notwith- 
standing of quhatsumeiur bruitis or reports, to keepe still one eare 
for me, I committ you, madame and dearest mother, to Goddis holie 
protection. From Faklande, the 19th of Julie, 1585. 

Your most loving and affectionate brother and sonne, 


No. X. 



The queen alludes to James's former " contrarious dealings" and cau- 
tions him against duplicity who seeketh two strings to one bow may 
shoot strong, but not straight princes' causes can never be conducted 
so covertly that they can be concealed, and " we old foxes " can find 
ways of taking advantage of others' malice it becomes kings, therefore, 
to deal sincerely -promises to suspend her judgment of any hearsay 
until sJie receives James's own answer. 

The following letter may be an answer to No. VIII. It was certainly written at the time 
I have assigned to it. It manifests very plainly Elizabeth's notion of James's character, 
and is, moreover, a good specimen of her customary dark but emphatic style. The allu- 
sion to Wotton and Alexander fixes the date to June or July, 1585. If not an answer 
to No. VIII. it may possibly have been written a few days before it. No. VIII., it will 
be remembered, was sent to the queen by James upon Alexander's return home. 

ELI / A in; J II AND JAMES VJ. 17 

Right deare brother, Your gladsome acceptance of my offred 
amitie, togither with the desiar you seem to have ingraven in your 
mynde to make merites correspondant, makes me in ful opinion that 
some ennemis to our good wyl shal loose muche travel, with making 
frustrat thar baiting stratagemes, wlu'che I knowe to be many and by 
sondry meanes to be explored. I cannot halt with you so muche 
as to denye that I haue seen suche euident shewes of your contra- 
rious dealings, that if I mad not my rekening the bettar of the 
moneths, I might condemne you as unworthy of suche as I mynd 
to shewe myselfe toward you, and therfor I am wel pleased to take 
any coulor to defend your honor, and hope that you wyl remember, 
that who seaketh two stringes to one bowe, the may shute strong, 
but neuer strait ; and if you suppose that princes causes be vailed so 
couvertly that no intelligence may bewraye them, deceave not your- 
selfe; we old foxes can find shiftes to saue ourselves by others 
malice, and come by knowledge of greattest secreat, spetiallye if it 
touche our freholde. It becometh, therfor, all our rencq to deale 
sincerely, lest, if we use it not, whan we do it, we be hardly beleaved. 
I write not this, my deare brother, for clout but for remembrances. 
My ambassador writes so muche of your honorable traitment of him 
and of Alexandar, that I belive the be convertid Scotes. You 
oblige me for them, for wiche I rendar you a milion of most intire 
thankes, as she that meaneth to desarue many a good thoght in your 
brest throwe good desart. And for that your request is so honor- 
able, retaining so muche reason, I wer out of [my] sences if I shuld 
not suspend of any hiresay til the answer of your owne action, wiche 
the actor ought best to knowe, and so assure yourselfe I meane and 
vowe to do ; with this request, that you wyl affourd me the reci- 
proque. And thus, with my many petitions to the Almighty for 
your long life and preservation, I ende thes skribled lines. 
Your verev assured lovinge sistar and cousin, 


A mon bon frere 
le roy d'Escose. 

CAMD. sue. D 


No. XL 



James assures the queen of his innocency in a late mischief 9 and wishes 
to know what is her mind and desire for its reparation he hopes 
she has kept one ear open for him in spite of malicious tongues. 

In the midst of the complicated deception in which the diplomatic relations of the 
courts of England and Scotland were involved, as partly explained in the introduction to 
the letter No. VI., an unfortunate event occurred which added still farther to the com- 
plexity. On the 28th July, 1585, Francis lord Russell, third but eldest surviving son of 
Francis second earl of Bedford, was mortally wounded in a quarrel between the English 
and Scotch, which arose suddenly on the borders, during a truce-day agreed upon be- 
tween sir John Forster (lord Russell's father-in-law) and sir Thomas Ker of Fernihurst, 
the English and Scottish wardens of the marches. 

The quarrel was probably unpremeditated, but Ker was an intimate friend of the earl 
of Arran, and advantage was taken of that circumstance, by the English government, to 
pick a quarrel with the favourite of the Scottish king. It was alleged that lord Russell's 
death was a premeditated result, plotted between Arran and Ker. Sir Edward Wotton 
distinctly charged Arran with the guilt of a foul murder, and demanded satisfaction, on 
his mistress's behalf, for treachery practised against one of her most distinguished sub- 
jects. James was mortified beyond measure at this unlooked-for interruption of his 
pleasant intercourse with Wotton, as well as at the delay which it interposed in the con- 
clusion of a treaty which was to be accompanied by a payment of ready money. He 
wept like a child ; declared he wished all the lords of the border dead provided lord 
Russell were alive again; committed Arran to custody to await inquiry, and wrote off 
to Elizabeth the following hasty protestation of his own innocence. The letter is 
dated " 3 day of Julie," which is an obvious mistake. Nothing occurred at the beginning 
of July to which it can possibly allude. After referring to the diplomatic correspondence 
of the time, I think the date should have been either the 31st July or the 3rd August; 
probably the latter. 

Madame and mother, since haist anger and extraordinar sorrou 
will not permitt any long lettir, this present shall only seme to 
assure you of my honest innocence in this lait mischief, and of my 
constancie in that course mentionatt in my last letter unto you, not 
doubting hot youre ambassadoure hath written to you at large, both 
of the one and the other. I have also directid expreslie the bearer 


heirof unto you, to know your mynd and desyre for the repairing of 
this forsaid mischief, quliom praying you firmlie to credit, and to 
steame * still of my treuth, I committ you, madame and mother, to 
Goddis holy protection. From Saint Andreuse, the 3 day of Julie, 

Your most louing and devotid brother and sonne, 


I doubt not, madame, but ye have kept one eare for me, notwith- 
standing of many malicios tongues that nou do boldlie spicke. 

No. XII. 



The queen's astonishment that any Scot should have dared to violate his 
hands in any of the noble blood of England her satisfaction that 
James has not spared his well-favoured Arran, to cause him to an- 
swer such a suspicion wishes Ker of Fernihurst, the Scottish warden 
of the marches, to be delivered up to her. 

Right deare brother, I find to true the Frenche adage, Qu?un 
mal ne vint jamais seul ; for as the horrible and soudain murdar of 
my most faithful subiect and most vaillant baron was unto me a 
heartsore and grivous tidinges, so was it tenfold redoubled with 
knowelege that a Skot shuld dare violate his handes on any of our 
noble bloude, in a peacable concord, whan our frendship shuld haue 
sent out his hotest beames to the kindeling of the entier affection of 
bothe realmes ; that any of that nation shuld ons dare haue had a 
thoght to maculate suche a contract of amitie. I perceive, by my 
ambassador, that your grief is litel les than suche a hap deserveth, 
and do perceaue that you haue not spared your wel-fauored, to cause 
him answer suche a suspicion. I thinke myselfe, therfor, greatly 

* So in MS. for esteem. 


obliged unto your care for my satisfaction, and therin I thanke you 
for being so considerast of your owne honor, wiche, I assure you, 
lieth a-bleding in the bowels of many an Inglas man, until fill rayson 
be made for suche a treacherye. God send us bettar luck after our 
league be finished than this bloudy beginninge may geue calendes of, 
elz many a red side wil folowe suche demerites. But I hope you 
wyl spare no man that may be douted of suche a meaning. I 
meane, not only of the murdar but of the breaking out upon our bor- 
derars, wiche commonly ar the beginnings of our quarelz. I dout 
nothinge of your curious care in this behalfe, and for that the warden 
of that marche hathe bine the open and commen fosterar and com- 
pagnion of the traitor Westmarland and his complices in France 
and Scotland, I hope you wil agrie to send him to my handes, wher 
he shal neuer receaue iniurie nor ivel measure. And thus, desiring 
[you] to credit my ambassador in certain particularites that he shal 
impart unto you as to myselfe, I recommend you to Gods safe tui- 
tion, who graunt you many gladsome yeres. 

Your most affectionat sistar and cousin, 


A mon bon frere et cousin, 

le roy d'Escose. 

No. XIII. 



TJie king protests his devotion to Elizabeth promises to sift out the 
trial of the circumstances respecting the death of lord Russell 
he has assented to the terms of the proposed league. 

Madame and dearest sister, the recept of your thre fauorable lettres, 
quhairof two be of youre ouen hand, hath moued me to give you, by 


this present, the most harty thankis thairfor of him quho is most 
deuoted to you of any prince in cristendom ; but specially I thinke 
myself more beholden unto you then I can euer aquyte, for the pro- 
meis and uou ye make in one of your letteris, not to trust any euill 
of me quhill ye heir my ouin declaration of may part Madame, 
since ye have so honorably delt with me in this case, I think it my 
pairt, as it was allways, to sifte out the try all of this last mishapp, 
with all posible speed, and, on the other pairt, I will earnestly re- 
quire you to suspend your judgement quhill ye heir from me quhat 
success my trauillis haue takin, quhairof ye shall be, with Goddis 
grace, aduertishit in very few dayes ; so shall my honest pairt be 
clearit, the guiltie knouin and ponishit, ye resoluit quhat to craue 
for your satisfaction and reparations of the fact, and the conclusion 
of the amitie and league go forduart, quhairunto I do allready fully 
assent, quhairof, since youre ambassadoure doth more largely writt, 
I will end heir, with promeis of my utter diligence in the forsaid 
tryall, and committing [you] to the holy protection of the Allmichtie. 
From Striuiling, the 13 day of August, 1585. 

Your most louing and deuotid brother and sonne, 


No. XIV. 



The king declares, that although it was proposed that the intended league 
between England and Scotland should only bind him to resist invasion 
of England on account of religion., his intention was, that it should be 
generally offensive and defensive, and he voluntarily binds himself to 
employ his crown and country to resist all invasions of England, upon 
whatsoever pretext. 

Madame and mother, in great haist, ready to ryd. Your ambas- 
sadouris present dispatche hath mouitt me to wryt this few wordis, 


to assure you that, althoch my articles that the ambassadoure sendis 
you desyris the league to concerne only religion, yit my plaine inten- 
tion is, that the league shall be offensive and defensive for all inua- 
sions upon quhatsumeuer pretexte. And theirfore I will pray you 
to keepe this present, in tokin and testimonil of my plaine assent 
thairunto, and that I will imploy my croune and cuntrie to resist to 
quhatsumeuer inuasionis uppon youris. Thus, praying [you] to appar- 
done this scribling in haist, and to continue still my loving mother as I 
shah 1 be your deuoted sonne, I committ you, madame and mother, 
to Goddis holy protection. The xix. day of August, from Striuiling, 

Your most louing and deuoted brother and sonn, 


No. XV. 



Offers of help on the recovery of power by the banished lords Eliza- 
beth's ignorance of their intended return to Scotland every mother's 
son of them shall smart if they do any personal violence to James. 

Angus, Mar, Glammis, and the other banished lords of Scotland remained in England, 
centres of intrigue and conspiracy, until the end of October, 1585. By that time Arran's 
misconduct and the cabals of his enemies had filled the cup of his unpopularity. The 
lords secretly gathered together their friends; crossed the border; made their appearance 
at Kelso; marshalled their host at Falkirk to the number of 8,000 men; and finally 
occupied Stirling, were admitted to the presence of the king, proclaimed Arran and his 
friends traitors, and took upon themselves the functions of government. This proceeding 
was no doubt privately connived at by Elizabeth's government, and probably by Elizabeth 
herself. At any event she had undertaken for the peaceable conduct of the banished lords 
so long as they were in her dominions. The following letter is her own personal vindication, 
in anticipation of a charge of having broken that engagement. It is written with great 
boldness and appearance of truth, but it may be doubted whether it actually negatives 
connivance, and is not in fact more subtle than honest. It is wholly in the queen's hand- 
writing, and contains many characteristic passages as well as an especially curious 


Right deare brother, the strangenes of harde accidens that ar 
arrived here, of unloked for, or unsuspected, attemps in Skotland, 
euen by some suche as lately issued out of our lande, constraineth 
me, as wel for the care we have of your person as of the discharge of 
our owne honor and consciense, to send you immediatly this gentleman, 
one that appartaineth to us in bloud,* bothc to offer you all assistance 
of helpe as al good indeuor of counceil, and to make hit plaine that 
we delt plainly. Thes lordes makeng great outcryes that I wold not 
or coulde helpe them to be restored ; I, by ther great importunitie, 
yelded, that if I might be fried of my assurance given unto you for 
ther safe kiping, I wold consent unto ther departure, and so, after 
your answer, as my thoght most honorable, that the might take ther 
way to Germany with your gracious graunt of some livelode, after 
a weekes space I gaue them my pasport and so dismissed them, with- 
out, I swere unto you, ons the sight of any one of them. Now, 
whan I way how suddenly, beyond my expectation, this suddan stur 
ariseth, and fering lest some ivel and wicked person might surmise 
that this was not without my forsight, I beseche you trust my actions 
accordinge the measure of my formar dealings for your safety, and 
ansuerable to the rule of reason, and you shal find, that few princes 
wyl agrye to constraint of ther equalz, muche les with compulsion of 
ther subiects. Juge of me, therfor, as of a kinge that caries no abiect 
nature, and thinke this of me, that, rather than your daungier, I 
wyl ventur myne ; and albeit I must confesse that it is daungerous 
for a prince to irritast to muche, through iuel aduise, the generalitie 
of great subiectz, so might you or now haue folowed my aduise, that 
wold neuer betray you with unsound counceil ; and now to conclude, 
making hast, I pray you be plain with this bearar, that I may knowe 

* William Knolles, eldest son of sir Francis Knolles, K.G. who married Katharine, 
daughter of William Gary esquire, by Mary Boleyne, Elizabeth's maternal aunt. Before 
the actual invasion of Scotland by the banished lords, sir Edward Wotton had found it 
necessary to desert his post of ambassador at James's court. James having given orders 
to seize Wotton in his house and hold him as an hostage for Arran, Wotton mounted a fleet 
horse, and crossed the borders during the night. 


what you wold that I should do, without excuse hireafter, that con- 
strained you did hit, for I dare assure you of his secresye, and 
therof be you bold. For the lord Russelz dethe, and other thinges, 
I referre me to this gentilman, who I dare promis is of no faction 
beside my wyl. God blesse you in al safety as I wysche myself. 

Your tru assured cousin and sistar, 


Feare not, for your life must be thers, or els the shal smart wel, 
euery mothers son of them. 


A mon trescher frere 

le roy d'Escose. 

No. XVI. 



James desires to revive certain matters of business which have dropped 
asleep through occasions of time has sent a messenger to inform the 
queen of his estate and intentions. 

The success of the returned lords was followed by the calling of a parliament, in which 
the king united with his people in expressions of friendliness towards England and affection 
for protestantism. The parliament urged the immediate settlement of the long meditated 
league with Elizabeth, and as soon as it had risen, the king despatched sir William 
Keith to the English queen to invite her to come to a conclusion upon the subject. He 
was the bearer of the following letter. 

You * madame and deirest sister, I have sent this gentilman bearar 
heirof, my familiar seruand (according to my promes in my last lettre), 
for thre speciall causes: first, to visit yow, in respect it is long ago since 
I visited yow with one of myne ; secondlye, that all those matters that 
war in dealing before, and thorow occasions of tyme left as it war 
asleep this whyll past, may of-new be walkened up and perfyted, as 
I did wryt in my last lettre ; thirdlye, I have directed him to informe 

* So in the orig. 


yow both amply and particularlye of the estate of all matters heir, for 
the which cause, to the end that ye myght the more fullye be 
informed, I stayed him until the parliament was past, and matters 
put to sum settlidnes, that he might carye the certaintye of those 
matters. Whom I have directed, not as in any public message but 
priuatlye, to informe yow of my secret intention in all thinges. Their- 
fore I pray yow to trust him firmlye, and to giue him a good andspedye 
dispetche. Thus praying yow euer to assure yourself that all my 
dedes shall correspond to my promises on your behalf, I commit you, 
madame and dairest sister, to God his holye protection. From 
Linlythquo the xx. day of December, 1585. 

Your trewest and assured brother and cousin, 
[Indorsed,'] JAMES R. 

Copye off the king his lettre 

to quene of England, xx. 

December, 1585.* 

* Among Mr. Ryder's papers are the following two copies of letters written by James 
to persons at the English court to further sir William Keith's embassy. They are not 
addressed, but the first was probably written to secretary Walsingham, and the second to 
the earl of Leycester. The latter had at that time just embarked for the low countries, 
but his departure had been long delayed and put off from time to time, and James, writing 
from Linlithgow on the 20th December, might well be ignorant that the earl actually 
sailed from Harwich on the 8th. 



Richt trustie freind, I haue directed the bearer heirof, my familiar seruand, to the 
quene your souuerane, for dyuers caussis, bot especially that the former dealing which hath 
bene this tyme past left of may be of-new walkened up and perfyted, wherein I pray you 
to assist him by all the good meanes ye can ; as also to procure his good and spedy dis- 
patche. I must also earnestly desyre you to give him your best advyse how he shall behaue 
himself in all his proceedinges, and to trust him firmely. Thus referring the whole par- 
ticularis of his message and direction to his owne discours, I committ you, richt trustie 
freind, to Goddis holy protection. From my palais of Lynlyfqw, the xx. day of 
December, 1585. 

Your most loving freind, 



No. XVII. 



TJie queen is pleased at James's good liking of the returned lords and 
their action she is about to send an ambassador to conclude the 
league with him there must be reparation for lord RusseWs death 
since God made kings, the clergy ought not to be allowed to unmake 
their authority professions of entire confidence in James's sincerity. 

This letter was written in reply to the one immediately preceding. All difficulty in the 
way of the conclusion of a league being removed by the change in the Scottish govern- 
ment, Elizabeth determined to send the veteran diplomatist Randolph to Scotland to bring 
about a final settlement. He is the " gentleman," and sir William Keith the " acceptable 
messenger " here alluded to. It is evident from the latter part of this letter that James 
had already acquired the character of being a profound dissembler. 

Right deare brother, I am not a. litel satisfaict of many a care- 
full thoght that my mynde tossed up and downe, with doutes what 
care might do to a kings brest, invirunned of a seubdain with so 
vnlooked for an accident; my thankes, therfor, may sca[r]se be 
contained in this paper for your most acceptable messanger, whom 
it pleased you to commaund [for] my satisfaction of your good estat, 
togither with your good liking of the lordes and ther action, whom I 



My lord and richt trusty cousing, Being latly aduertishit of your nondeparture as yet 
(quhairof I am most glaid), I haue thocht good to wryte this present unto you with the 
bearer heirof, my familiar seruant, to desyre yow to further his good and spedie dispatche 
by all good meanes, quhome I pray yow earnistly to direct and aduyse in all his pro- 
ceedingis, since I haue geuin charge to behaue himself fully according to your direction 
and aduyse. As to the causes of his message and particuleris thairof, I remitt thame to 
his particular declaratioun, who will informe you amply therein. Thus praying you to 
giue him firme trust, I commit you, my lord and right trustie cousing, to Goddis holy 
protectioun. From my palais of Linlifqw, the xx. day of December, 1585. 

Your most louing and assured freind, 


As ye wold do me any pleasure, remember uponn the sending of the bukkis with speid. 


beseche God no longar preserue in life, than the be ready for your 
preservation to spend all thers ; so far wer euer my intentz from 
any trechery towarde you. And wheras your desiar seameth great 
that the league in hand myght come to ende, I am addressing a 
gentilman vnto you for the same purpose, and wyl delay no time for 
so good a intent, trusting than, that no whispering treason shal haue 
credit in your eare to retarde or cut of so nideful an action. Suppose 
suche, I pray you, to resemble a golden houke that oft deceaues the 
vnwary fische, and makes him receaue his worst in lieu of bettar hope. 

Amiclz al thes kind dealings of yours, let me not forget how litel 
care the worlde shal thinke you prise me at, if in middest of 
greatest frindship, my los of honor be no whit repaired for the shamful 
murther of the baron RusselL Pondar it depely, I beseche you, for 
hit striketh nere me, so publik an iniurye to haue no redres, without 
we shewe the thoght, wiche God alone reserues his part. The like 
answer was neuer yet giuen, and [I] hope for bettar paiment. 

For your churche matters, I do bothe admire and reioise to see 
your wise paraphrase, wiche far excedeth ther texte. Since God 
hathe made kinges, let them not unmake ther authorite, and let 
brokes and smal rivers acknowledge ther springes, and flowe no 
furdar than ther bankes. I praise God that you uphold euer a 
regal rule. 

For all other matters wiche this gentilman hathe told me, I wil 
hope stil that your faithful profession of constantie in my behalfe 
shal far surmount the devellishe practises and suttel iniquitie of those 
wiche, undar pretence of your aduancement, wil skanten your best 
fortiune. And albeit I am aduertised, even from amonge themselves, 
that your assurance to them doth shewe, that al my faire offers from 
you be ad Etyesios and ridiculus, meaning wholy to folow them and 
temporise with me, yet I mynd to peccare in meliorem if I must nides 
be begiled, and mynd not to trust them til I see you faile me, and 
than deceptis* ad decipientem digne vertitur. Til than, I wyl trust your 
worde, and dare assure you shal neuer, on my behalfe, haue cause to 

* This is the reading of the MS. 


repent your woues, meaning you no les good than I pray God euer 
to afourde me, prayinge him longe to conserve you. And to ende 
this lettar, let me not forget to recommend this gentlemans good be- 
havor in this his charge, hauing used it to your honor and his great 
praise. Thus I finische to troble you, but do rest, 

Your most assuredzt louing sistar and cousin, 


To my deerest brother and 
cousin the king of Scotts. 




The queen has sent as ambassador to James a gentleman who laboured 
for the king's preservation in his childish years even to the peril of his 
own life she praises highly his long experience, his wit, discretion, 
and fidelity. 

The present letter was sent, as I take to be clear from its contents, by Randolph, who 
was commissioned to conclude the league. He arrived in Edinburgh on the 26th 
February, 1585-6. 

Right deare brother, Determining with myselfe to sende you some 
one of whose affection I had profe towarde your estat and parson, 
have resolved of this gentilman, who in your childesche yeres sought 
all menes of your preservation, and was the instrument to have you 
served by them that folowed no other rular than your raigne, and 
for that cause suffred hard assaultes, yea to the present peril of life, 
wiche was soght sondry wayes, and ons by bullet of pistol, as he had 
to shew. Suppose you that suche a one, so used, wold be hasty to 
go on this viage, wer it not my spetiall charge, wiche only I do 
for the longe experience that he hathe had of that country, and so 
the bettar able to serve us bothe, for I dare swere he hathe no other 
scope than to kipe us frendes, and increase that bond. And if he 


find any opposite against so good a worke, he wyl obviat it if he may, 
and wyl serve you in any thing that may advance your honor and 
quiat, according to his commission ; praying you to have regard unto 
him and his honorable traictment, that I may haue no cause to 
reuenge his wronge ; not douting but if you knew his nature and 
honesty, as I do, you wold not estime him menely. I assure you 
he is of muche valeur bothe for wit and discretion ; in whom ther 
was never found trechery. Thus I end, with my prayers to God 
for your long continuance. 

Your assured sistar and cousin, 

[Addressed,] ELIZABETH R. 

A mon bon frere 

le roy d'Escose. 

No. XIX. 



Caution against foreign intriguers Elizabeths care over James ab incu- 
nabulis thinks scorn to be asked to sign an " instrument " for James's 
security expects some persons to be delivered up to her on account of 
the death of lord Russell. 

Randolph was received by James with the most treacherous courtesy; but the official 
servants of the Scottish sovereign not less accomplished dissemblers than their master 
when it was their cue to play false gave Randolph alarming information as to golden offers 
with which the court of France was then tempting the needy Scottish monarch. Upon his 
report of these circumstances to Elizabeth, she addressed James in the following letter of 
indirect advice and warning. Her heavy wit in reference to an *' instrument " or guarantee 
for the payment of his annual pension or pecuniary allowance, which James desired her to 
sign, is amusing and characteristic. 

The expertist seamen, my deare brother, makes vant of ther best 
shippes whan the pas the liighest bellowes without yelding, and 
broke nimlest the roughest stormes. The like profe, I suppose, may 
best be made, and surest boste, of frindes, whan greatest persuasions 
and mightiest ennemis oppose themselues for parties. If than a con- 


stant irremouable good wyll appere, thar is best triall made. An; I 
for that I knowe ther is no worse orator for truthe than malice, nor 
shwredar invahar than envye, and that I am sure you haue wanted 
nether, to assaile your mynde to win it from our frindeship ; if not 
auailing all thes minars, you kipe the hold of your promised inward 
affection, as Randol at lengthe haue told me and your owne lettars 
assure me, I dare thus boldly affirme, that you shall haue the bettar 
part in this bargain. For when you way in equal balance, with no 
palsey hande, the very ground of ther desires that wold withdrawe 
you, it is but roote of mischif to peril your selfe, with hope to harme 
her who euer hathe preserued you ; and sins you may be sure that 
Skotland, nor yourself, be so potent, as for your greatnes the seake 
you, nor neuer did, but to iniure a thirde ; and if you rede the his- 
tories, ther is no great cause of bost for many conquests, thogh your 
contry sarued ther malice. This you see the beginning why euer 
Skotland hathe bine sought. Now, to come to my ground worke, 
only natural affection ab incunabulis sturrid me to saue you from the 
murderars of your father, and the peril that ther complices might 
brede you. Thus, as in no counterfait miroir, you may behold with- 
out maske the faces of bothe beginnars. It is for you to juge what ar 
like to be the best euent of bothe, and therafter I pray God you may 
use your best choise to your surest good, no semblant false to begile. 
And as I reioyse to haue had, iven in this hammering worlde, suche 
presant profe of your sincerite, so shal you be sure to imploye it 
upon no gileful person, nor suche as wil not take as muche regard of 
your good as of her owne. 

Tochinge an " instrument," as your secretarye terme it, that you 
desiar to haue me signe, I assure you, thogh I can play of some, and 
haue bine broght up to know musike, yet this disscord wold be so 
grose as wer not fit for so wel-tuned musicke. Must so great dout 
be made of fre good wyl, and gift be so mistrusted, that our signe 
Emanuel * must assure ? No, my deere brother. Teache your new rawe 

* So in the original. 


counselars bettar manner than to aduis you such a paringe of ample 
meninge. Who shuld doute performance* of kinges offer? What 
dishonor may that be denied? Folowe next your owne nature, for 
this neuer came out of your shoppe. But, for your ful satisfaction, 
and to plucke from the wicked the weapon the wold use to brede 
your doubt of meanings, thes the be. First, I wil, as longe as you 
with iuel desart alter not your course, take care for your safety, 
helpe your nide, and shun al actes that may damnific you in any 
sort, ether in present or future time ; and for the portion of relife, I 
minde neuer to lessen, thogh, as I see cause, I wil rather augment. 
And this I hope may stand you in as muche assuranse as my name 
in parchement, and no les for bothe our honors. 

I can not omit, also, to request you, of all amitie betwine us, to 
haue good regard of the longe-waiting expectation that all our sub- 
jectes lokes after, that some persons be deliuered in to my handes for 
some repaire of my honor thogh no redres for his dethe,* according 
as my ambassador Randol shal signifie, and that ther be no more 
delais, wiche haue bine ouer many already. And thus I end my 
trobling you. Comittinge you to the tuition of the living God, who 
graunt you many yeres of prosperous raigne. 

Your most assured louinge sistar and cousin, 


No. XX. 




Apologises for not writing pending the arrangement of the treaty it is 
now signed explanations as to the " instrument." 

The following letter is a reply to the last. In spite of all opposition Randolph suc- 
ceeded in procuring the king's signature to the terms of the treaty; but James could not 

* This alludes to the desired delivery to Elizabeth of Ker of Fernihurst, who was ac- 
cused of having plotted the death of lord Russell. 


be laughed out of his " instrument," one point in which, although the fact does not appear 
in this correspondence, was, that it was to bind Elizabeth not to permit any measures to be 
brought forward against James's title to the English crown. (Tytler's Hist, of Scotland, 
Yin. 279.) 

I doubt not, madame and dearest sister, but ye haue thir tymes 
past accused and condemned me in your ouen mynde of foryetfullness 
or great sleuth, in hauing bene so long unuisiting you with any letre, 
and yett I must most hartly craue your pardon in respect I did it 
upon goode intention, for, upon consideration of youre ambassadouris 
negotiating with me upon the accomplishing of the league, I thocht 
it much bettir, thoch I shulde have stayed the longer, to writt to 
you the performance then excuse the delay thairof, and, thairfore, I 
woulde not finish my letter quhill the same had also bene finished in 
lyke mainer : as indeed I haue nou at last (thoch not without cross- 
ing) subscryved and deliverit the same to your ambassadoure, quhom, 
according to youre recomendation, I haue louingly usid, as I will 
quhomsoeuer ye can send, for the sendaris saike. And as for the 
instrument, quhairunto I desyre youre seale to be affixit, think not, I 
pray you, that I desire it for any mistrust, for I protest before God that 
youre simple promeis uolde be more then sufficient to me, if it uaire 
not that I uoulde haue the quhole worlde to understand hou it 
pleacith you to honoure me aboue my demeritis, quhich fauoure and 
innumerable otheris, if my euill happ will not permitt [me] by action to 
acquyte, yett shall I contend by goode meaning to conteruayle the 
same at her handis, quhome, committing to the Almichties protection, 
I pray euer to esteeme me, 

Hir most beholden and louinge freind and cousin, 


Madame, I must earnistiy requeist you by youre fauorable and 
speadie dispetche of the treu seruande and faithftdl subiect to you and 
to me James Hudsone, to lett him knau that my mediation hes 
auailid at youre handis. 

I I.I/. \r, I. I II AM) -IAMKS VI. 33 

No. XX I. 



Reply to James's objections to her last letter she never promised more 
money has sent a letter in the terms of the desired " instrument." 

Elizabeth's reply to No. XX. was extremely unsatisfactory to James. It not only con- 
tained some very unpalatable admonition but still persisted in the rejection of the " instru- 
ment," and, above all things, made manifest a diminution in his promised pension from 
.5,000 per annum to 4,000. This letter was presented by Randolph, remarks Mr. 
Tytler, " in an interview which he had with James in the garden of the palace; and, as he 
read it, the young monarch, colouring with anger, swore ' by God' that had he known 
what little account the queen would make of him, she should have waited long enough be- 
fore he had signed any league, or disobliged his nobles, to reap nothing but disappointment 
and contempt." (Hist, of Scotland, viii. 282.) James vented his dissatisfaction in a letter 
to which the following is Elizabeth's reply. It is tame for her, and, in reference to the 
alleged mistake in the amount of the pension, leaves little doubt that sir Edward Wotton 
mentioned " twenty thousand crowns," as James asserted. 

I muse muche, right deare brother, how possiblie my wel-ment 
lettar, prociding from so fauteles a hart, could be ether misliked or 
misconstred ; and first, for my promis made of reciproke usage in all 
amicable maner, I trust I nether haue, nor neuer shall, make fraction 
of in the lest scruple; and as for doute of your perfourmance of 
your vowe made me, I assure you, if I did not trust your wordes, I 
shuld estime but at smale valew your writings, and if you please to 
reade againe my last lettar, you shall perceaue how muche I prise 
your tried constancy for all the many assaultes that, I am sure, your 
eares haue bin assailled with, and therfor I am far from dout, whan 
suche profe is made, and you might worthely forthinke you to haue 
bestowed so muche faithful dealinge upon one that ether had smal 
iugement or muche ingratitude, and therof I may clerely purge me 
from suche crime, for I haue more iust cause to acknowelege thanke- 
fulnis manifold, than, in any part, to ouerrun my owne wit to leue it 
beliind me. 

And for the some that you suppose my many affaires made me for- 
get, togither with the maner of the instrument, or lettar, quocunque 



nomine datur. For the first, I assure you I never gaue commission 
for more. Some other might mistake, as Randol wil tel you. And 
for the lettar, some wordes and fourme was suche as fitted not our 
two frindeships, as Randol also can shewe you, but I haue sent you 
a lettar that I am sure containes all you desired in spetiall wordes. 
I trust it shal content you ; although I must say for myselfe this 
muche, that the pithe and effect of all you receiued afore ; and be- 
seche you thinke, that I finde it my greatest fault that I remember 
but to well, yea, many times more than I wolde, but never aught 
that may be for your behoffe, ether in honor or contentation, shal euer 
slip out of my mind, but wil take so good regarde unto it as that it 
euer shal nerely touche myselfe ; as knoweth God, who euer preserue 
you from deceitful counseil, and graunt you true knowlege of your 
assured, with longe and many yeres to raigne. 

Your most affectionate and assured louing sistar and cousin, 

A mon bon frere et 
cousin le rov d'Escosse. 

No. XXII. 


Elizabeth intercedes on behalf of Archibald Douglas, accused of a parti- 
cipation in the murder of James's father, Henry Darnley. 

The following extract from Mr. Tytler's History of Scotland furnishes an admirable 
although rather over-drawn comment upon the present letter. " The happy conclusion of 
the league was a matter of sincere congratulation to the English queen ; but she had in- 
trusted to Randolph another somewhat difficult negotiation. This was to induce James to 
recall and pardon the noted Archibald Douglas, whom she had herself recently imprisoned, 
but who had purchased his freedom by betraying the secrets of the Scottish queen. This 
gentleman united the manners of a polished courtier to the knowledge of a scholar and a 
statesman. He was of an ancient and noble house; he had been for years the friend and 
correspondent of Burghley and Walsingham; and he was now in great credit with the 


English queen. But Douglas had a dark as well as a bright side; and exhibited a con- 
tradiction or anomaly in character by no means unfre^uent in those days; the ferocity of a 
feudal age gilded or lacquered over by a thin coating of civilization. Externally all was 
polish and amenity; truly and at heart the man was a sanguinary, fierce, crafty and un- 
scrupulous villain. He had been personally present at Darnley's murder, although he 
only admitted the foreknowledge of it; he had been bred as a retainer of the infamous 
Bothwell; he had afterwards been employed by the Scottish queen, whom he sold to her 
enemies; and Elizabeth's great purpose in now interceding for his return from her court 
to his own country was, to use his influence with the young king against his mother and 
her faction. . . . A mock trial was got up; a sentence of acquittal pronounced; and 
Douglas was not only restored to his estates and rank but admitted into the highest confi- 
dence with the sovereign, whose father he had murdered." (Tytler's Hist. Scotland, 
viii. 285.) 

This letter is not placed in strictly chronological order, it having been thought better to 
put all those letters relating to the league in regular succession. 

Right high right excellent and mighty prince, our deerest brother 
and cousin, in our hartiest maner we recommende us unto you. 
Understanding that this bearer, Mr. Archibald Duglas, by the 
travell and mediation of his good freendes, hath obteyned fauour at 
your handes, that it pleaseth you noue both to conceave a good 
opinion of him, and to license hym to retourne home to your pre- 
sence, we could not but accompany him with this our letter, to 
witnes unto you in his behalf, that, during the tyme of his abode 
here, he hath still caryed himself in such loyall and duetifull sort 
towarde you, as you haue just cause to think the restoring of him to 
your good opinion and fauour well bestowed; wherof we ar the 
rather moved to geve you knowledg, for that we understand that 
sum have don ill offices to work in you a hard conceit of the gen- 
tleman, whom for our part we woold by no meanes admitt to cum 
to our presence (although by our servant Randolph we were informed 
that he offered to abyde his triall according to the lawes of Scotland 
for any matter that could be layed to his chardge), vntil such tyme 
as, by his solemne othe, he had, in the presence of our priuie counsel, 
purged himself of any criminal] matter that might be proved against 
him touching the detestable murder of your late father. And yet, 
notwithstanding this kind of purgation, we did withall, at the tyme 


of his furst access unto us, let him plainly understand, that, if at anv 
tyme therafter it shuld appere unto us that he could be any further 
touched in that matter, then with the only conjectured or reported 
knowledge of others that such an horrible fact was intended to be 
committed, we woold not only make present deliuery of him, but also 
craue earnestly that exemplary punishment might be extended upon 
him, as gilty of the murther of our so nere cousin and kinsman. 
But now, since yourself, as we are informed, do rest so far furth 
satisfied with his actiones and behavoure past, as that you can be 
content to revoke such decrees as haue ben made against him in the 
tyme of his absence, by graunting vnto him the benifit of the act of 
pacification, and to allowe him the triall of the lawes of Scotland for 
any actuall dealing in that horrible murder, with a free remittall of 
any his foreknowledg or concealing of the same, we ar glad of such 
your manner of proceeding towards him (wherin there appereth both 
clemencye and equitye), and so much the more bycause it is agree- 
able to a request which otherwise we ment ourself to have made vnto 
you in his behalf, if we had ben persuaded that the same woold not 
haue ben offensive vnto you, whom we cannot therfor but thank 
greatly for this your honnorable arid indifferent course of proceeding 
with the gentleman, praying you, withall, that this triall may be had 
with all convenient expedition, which we do the rather desyre for 
that we ar almoost fully persuaded of his innocencie in the said mur- 
der, and moved [also] * with compassion, that the slaunder therof 
should so long hang upon him, in whom we have ever observed a 
loyall and constant disposition to do you acceptable and duetifull ser- 
uice : as, on the other syde, if by the said triall he should happen to 
be found gilty, we woold not only forbeare to make any intreatie or 
mediation for him, but also urge rather the inflicting of condigne 
punishement vpon him for the same, to the terrour and example of 
all others. And yet our request is, that if he be not found gilty of 
any criminal or actual medling in that detestable murder, it woold 

* The paper torn. 


please you to fauour him with the ratifiing by parlement of the be- 
nifit that yourself have alredy graunted vnto him, of the general 
I >: u- i Mention for the taking awaye of all other offences committed in 
the tyme of your minoritie, wherin his case is common with many 
other your subiects that have obteyned a remittall of the same. And 
so, right high right excellent and mighty prince, our^deerest brother 
and cousin, we pray God to haue you alwayes in his blessed keeping. 
Geuen at our castel of Grenewich the eight daye of Aprill, 1586, in 
the xxviij th yere of our reign. 

Your very assurid sistar and cousin, 


To the right high right excellent and 

mighty prince, our deerest brother and 

cousin, the king of Scotland. 




The queen returns thanks for " amicable offers" and for the joy ex- 
pressed by the king at her escape from the jaws of death Babingtorfs 
conspiracy originated with the Jesuits, whom James is therefore urged 
not to suffer to remain in Scotland Elizabeth's sorrow for those who 
were guilty, and her surprise that one accounted wise should have 
part in such a design. 

The league between England and Scotland was scarcely concluded when both countries 
were startled by the discovery of the well-known Babington conspiracy. Its objects were, 
the assassination of Elizabeth, the release of Mary, and her establishment on the vacant 
throne of that country in which she had now passed so many years of exile and imprison- 
ment. The conspiracy came to light about the 3rd August, 1586, and the chief conspira- 
tors were executed on the 20th and 21st of the following September. Within a few days 
afterwards it was determined to bring queen Mary to what was termed a trial for having 
had a guilty knowledge of this formidable plot. Without being acquainted with this 
last determination, James had written to Elizabeth, and had also sent a special ambassador 


to her, to congratulate her on her escape. The following was her reply. The " one ac- 
counted wise" was, no doubt, queen Mary; and probably there is an allusion to her in the 
previous passage, in which there is mention of "some that are guilty of this murther." 
This letter is wholly in the queen's handwriting. 

I hope, my deare brother, that my many waighty affayres in pre- 
sent may make my lawful excuse for the retardance of the answer to 
your ambassadeurs charge, but I doute not but you shal be honor- 
ably satisfaict in all the pointz of his commission, and next, after my 
owne errand done, I must rendar you my innumerable thankes for 
suche amicable offers as hit hathe pleased you make, making you as- 
sured that, with Gods grace, you shal neuer have cause to regrat 
your good thoghtz of my meaninge to deserue as muche good wil 
and affection as euer one prince owed another, wisching all meanes 
that may maintaine your faithful trust in me, that neuer wyl seake 
aught but the increase of your honor and safty. I was in mynd to 
haue sent you suche accidentz as this late monethe brought furthe,* 
but the sufficientie of mastar Archebal f made me retaine him, and 
do rendar you many loving thankes for the joy you take of my narow 
escape from the chawes of dethe, to wiche I might easely haue fallen 
but that the hand of the hiest saued me from that snare. 

And for that the curse of that desaing rose up from the wicked 
sucgestion of the Jesuites, wiche make hit an axceptable sacrifice to 
God, and meritorieus to themselfe, that a kinge not of ther profession 
shuld be murthered, therfor I could kipe my pen no longar from dis- 
charging my care of your person, that you suffer not suche vipars to 
inhabite your lande. The say you gaue leue undar your hand that 
the might safely come and go. For Gods loue regard your surety 
aboue all perswations, and account him no subiect that intertaines 
them. Make not edictz for skorne, but to be obserued. Let them 
be rebelles, and so pronunsed, that preserue them. 

For my part, I am sorier that the cast away so many goodly gen- 
tilmen than that the soght my ruine. I thanke God I haue taken 

* The discovery of Babington's conspiracy. 

f Archibald Douglas was at this time the Scottish ambassador at Elizabeth's court. 


more dolor for some that ar gilty of this murthcr than bcare them 
malice that the soght my dethe. I protest hit before God. But 
suche iniquitie will not be hide, be hit neuer so craftely handeled ; 
and yet, whan you shal here all, you wyl wondar that one accownted 
wise * wyl use suche matter so fondly. But no marvel, for whan 
the ar giuen to a reprobat sence the offen make suche slip. 

I haue bine so tedious that I take pitie of your paine, and so wyl 
ende this skribling, praying you beliue that you could neuer haue 
chosen a more sure trust that wil neuer begile than myself, who 
dayly prayes to God for your longe prosperitie. 

Your most assured louing sistar and cousin, 


A mounsieur mon bon frere et 
cousin le roy d'Escose. 

[Contemporary memorandum indorsed^ 
Of the 4 of October, 1586. 

No. XXIV. 



Tlianks for offers of service desires the Kers may be sent to her 
thanks God that James is alive to the dangerous practices of the 
Jesuits what was confessed by all the conspirators without torture 
Douglas tarries until matters of great importance are concluded upon. 

If the date indorsed in a contemporary hand upon this letter is to be relied upon, and 
there can be no reasonable doubt that it is either the date of the letter or of its 
receipt, it was written just at the time of the proceedings against queen Mary at 
Fotheringay. Those proceedings took place on the 14th and loth of October, and the 
court was then adjourned to the 25th of the same month at Westminster. The result of 

* i. e. Mary queen of Scots. 


proceedings, which ought to have been so deeply interesting to king James, both as a son 
and as a sovereign, was no doubt the " matter of weight " for the communication of which 
Archibald Douglas was detained in London. This letter is altogether in the queen's own 

My deare brother, Hit hathe sufficiently infourmed me of your 
singular care of my estat and brething * that you haue sent one, in 
suche diligence, to understand the circumstancis of the treasons wiche 
lately wer lewdly attempted and miraculously vttred. Of whiche I 
had made participant your embassador afor your lettars came. And 
now am I to shewe you, that, as I haue receaved many writings 
from you of great kindnis, yet this last was fraughted with so careful 
passion, and so effectuall utterance of all best wisches for my safety, and 
offer of as muche as I could haue desired, that I confes, if I shuld not 
seake to decerue it, and by merites tye you to continuance, I wer 
ivell-wordy suche a frind ; and, as the thankes my hart yeldes my 
pen may skant rendar you, so shal the ownar euer decerue to shewe hit 
not ivel imploied, but on suche a prince as shall requite your good 
wyl, and kipe a wacheful yee to all doings that may conserne you. 

And whereas you offer to send me any traitor of myne residing in 
your land, I shal not faille but expect th'accomplischement of the 
same in case any suche shal be, and require you, in the menetime, 
that spidy deliuerye may be maid of the Cars,f wiche toucheth bothe 
my conscience and honor. 

I thanke God that you beware so sone of Jesuites, that haue bine 
the source of al thes trecheries in this realme, and wyl sprede, like 
an iuel, wide, if at the first the be not wided out. I wold I had had 
Prometheus for companion, for Epimetheus had like have bine myne 
to sone. What religion is this, that the say the way to saluation is 
to kil the prince for a merit meritorious ? This is that the haue all 
confessed without tortur or menace. J I swere hit, on my worde. 

* So in the orig. 

f The Kers of Fernihuret, implicated in the death of lord Russell. 
: This must not be understood'to mean that they were none of them subjected to torture 
or menace, but that the confession in question was not made under torture or menace. 


Far be hit from Skotland to harbor any suche, and therfor I wische 
your good providence may be duly executed, for elz lawes resemble 
cobwebbes, whens great bees get out by breaking, and small flies stiks 
tiist for wekenis. 

As concerning the retarding of your answers to al pointz of your 
ambassadors charge, you had receved them or now but that matters 
of that weight that I am sure you wold willingly knowe can not as 
yet receaue a * conclusion, and til that mastar Douglas doth tarye ; 
and with his retourne I hope you shal receaue honorable requital of 
his amicable embassade, so as you shal have no cause to regret his 
arrival ; as knoweth the Lord, whom ever I beseche to send f you 
many joiful dayes of raigne and life. 

Your most assured louing and faithful sistar and cousin, 


I must giue you many thankes for this poore subject of inyne, for 
whom I wil not stik to do al pleasure for your request, and wold 
wische him undar the grond if he shuld not serue you with greatest 
faithe that any seruant may. I haue wylled him tel you some thinges 
from me ; I beseche you heare them fauorablie. 


A mon bon frere e cousin le roy d'Escose. 
[ Contemporary memorandwn 9 ~] 
Of the 15 of October, 1586. 

No. XXV. 



Since the arrival of the Scottish commissioners there has been discovered 
a fresh conspiracy against the queen's life the danger to Elizabeth 
from keeping the serpent that poisons her she appeals to James to 
iceigh her life and reject the care of murder. 

The Scottish sovereign saw his mother put upon what is called her trial, unde- 

* A >i in the orig. f Sene in the orig. 



fended, before a tribunal composed entirely of her enemies, without any very strenuous 
interference on her behalf. But his people had more feeling than himself. They were 
full of indignation that one who, with all her faults, was still remembered as their once 
beautiful queen, should be treated with such manifest injustice. They burned to vindi- 
cate in her behalf the honour of the nation and the claims of natural justice. The king 
could not stir abroad without being besieged by popular appeals for vengeance. Even in 
the innermost chambers of his palace his ears were assailed with the direst imprecations 
against the queen of England. Thus urged, he was obliged to act with more de- 
cision. He sent sir William Keith into England in November ] 586, and the master 
of Gray and sir Robert Melvil in January 1586-7, all of them upon missions of inter- 
cession for the unhappy Mary. But his efforts were equally wanting in spirit and in 
dignity. His representations were hampered by being mixed up with questions respect- 
ing his own right of succession to the English throne, which he deemed of more import- 
ance than the life of his mother, and were deprived of all weight by the universal belief, 
founded upon a knowledge of his general character, that he merely simulated an interest 
which he did not feel, and that if the act were once done, " in time" he might be moved to 
digest it. Whilst the Scottish ambassadors were in London, a new conspiracy was discovered, 
or pretended to be discovered, in which Chateauneuf, the French ambassador, was impli- 
cated. The ambassador was summoned to lord Burghley's residence, and there confronted 
with the informer, William Stafford, brother of sir Edward Stafford, the queen's ambassador 
in France. Each flatly contradicted the other, and the truth or falsehood of the charge re- 
mains in doubt between them. The following letter was written by Elizabeth to James 
purposely to apprise him of this transaction, which, by its effect upon the minds of the 
people, could not but exercise a very important influence upon the fate of his mother. 

I finde myselfe so trobled lest sinistar tales might delude you, my 
good brother, that I haue willingly found out this messanger, whom 
1 knowe most sincere to you and a true subiect to me, to carry unto 
you my most sincere meaning toward you, and to request this iust 
desiar, that you neuer dout my intiere good wyll in your behalfe ; 
and do protest, that, if you knewe, even sins the arrivall of your 
commissionars, (wiche if the list the may tell you,) the exstreme dan- 
gier my life was in, by an embassadors honest silence, if not inven- 
tion, and suche good complices as haue themselues, by Godz permis- 
sion, unfolded the hole conspiratie, and haue aduouched hit befor his 
face, thoght hit be the peril of ther owne lives, yet voluntaryly, one of 
them neuer beinge suspected brake hit with a councelar to make me 
acquainted therwith. You may see whither I kipe the serpent that 
poisons me, whan the confes to haue reward. By sauing of her life 
the wold haue had mine. Do I not make myself, trowe ye, a goodly 


pray for euery wretche to deuour? Transfigure yourself into my 
state, and suppose what you aught to do, and therafter way my life, 
and reiect the care of inurdar, and shun all baites that may untie our 
amities, and let all men knowe, that princes knowe best their owne 
lawes, and misiuge not that you knowe not For my part, I wyl 
not Hue to wronge the menest And so I conclude you with your 
owne wordes, you wyl prosecute or mislike as muche thos that seake 
my ruine as yf the sought your hart bloud, and wold I had none in 
myne if I wold not do the like ; as God knoweth, to whom I make 
my humble prayers to inspire you with best desiars. 

Your most affectionated sistar and cousin, 


I am sending you a gentilman fourwith, the other being fallen 
sick, who I trust shal yeld you good reason of my actions. 

To nay verey good brother and cousin, the king of Skotz. 

No. XXVI. 



The queen offers varieties arguments for the necessity of putting Mary 
queen of Scots to death. 

The Scottish commissioners proposed that Mary should be transferred into the custody of 
some neutral prince, her relations at the same time entering into an engagement on her 
behalf, that she would thenceforth abstain from all interference in the affairs of England. 
The following letter contains Elizabeth's reply. She ridicules the proposal, and vindicates 
her intention to sacrifice the life of her prisoner, upon the plea of necessity. 

Be not caried away, my deare brother, with the lewd perswations of 
suche, as insteade of infowrming you of my to nideful and helpeles 


cause of defending the brethe that God hath given me, to be better 
spent than spilt by the bloudy invention of traitors handz, may 
perhaps make you belive, that ether the offense was not so great, or 
if that cannot serue them, for the over-manifest triall wiche in 
publik and by the greatest and most in this land hathe bine mani- 
festly proved, yet the \vyl make that her life may be saved and myne 
safe, wiche wold God wer true, for whan you make vewe of my long 
danger indured thes fowre wel ny fiue moneths time to make a tast 
of, the greatest witz amongs my owne, and than of French, and last 
of you, wyl graunt with me, that if nide wer not mor than my 
malice she shuld not have her merite. 

And now for a good conclusion of my long-taried-for answer. 
Your commissionars telz me, that I may trust her in the hande of 
some indifferent prince, and have all her cousins and allies promis 
she wil no more seake my ruine. Deare brother and cousin, way in 
true and equal balance wither the lak not muche good ground whan 
suche stuf serves for ther bilding. Suppose you I am so mad to 
truste my life in anothers hand and send hit out of my owne? If 
the young master of Gray, for curring faueur with you, might 
fortune say hit, yet old master Mylvin hath yeres ynough to teache 
him more wisdome than tel a prince of any jugement suche a con- 
trarious frivolous maimed reason. Let your councelors, for your 
honour, discharge ther duty so muche to you as to declaire the ab- 
surditie of such an offer ; and, for my part, I do assure myselfe to 
muche of your wisdome, as, thogh like a most naturah 1 good son you 
charged them to seake all meanes the could deuis with wit or juge- 
ment to save her life, yet I can not, nor do not, allege any fault to 
you of thes persuations, for I take hit that you wil remember, that 
advis or desiars aught ever agree with the surtye of the party sent to 
and honor of the sendar, wiche whan bothe you way, I doute not but 
your wisdome wil excuse my nide, and waite my necessitie, and not 
accuse me ether of malice or of hate. 

And now to conclude. Make account, I pray you, of my finne 
frindeship loue and care, of which you may make sure accownt, as one 


that never inindz to faile from my worde, nor swarve from our league, 
but wyl increase, by all good meanes, any action that may make true 
shi'we of my stable amitie; from wiche, my deare brother, let no 
sinistar whisperars, nor busy troblars of princis states, persuade to 
leave your surest, and stike to vnstable stales. Suppose them to be 
but the ecchos to suche whos stipendaries the be, and wyl do more for 
ther gaine than your good. And so, God hold you ever in his blessed 
kiping, and make you see your tru frinds. Excuse my not writing 
sonar, for paine in one of my yees was only the cause. 

Your most assured lovinge sistar and cousin, 



To my deare brother and cousin, 
the kinge of Skotz. 

Resauit 8 Feb rij 1586, be post. 




The king accepts the queen's purgation of herself " of yon unhappy 
fact," he hopes her honourable beliaviour hereafter may persuade the 

whole world of her innocency, and that she will give him such satis- 
faction as will unite the whole island and establish it in the true 


A passage in Robert Gary's memoirs is almost a sufficient illustration of this letter. 
"The next year," he writes, " which was 1586, was the queen of Scots' beheading. I 
lived in court. ... At which time (few or none in the court being willing to undertake 
that journey) her majesty sent me to the king of Scots, to make known her innocence of 
her sister's death, with letters of credence from herself to assure all that I should affirm. 


I was waylaid in Scotland, if I had gone in, to have been murdered; but the king's 
majesty, knowing the disposition of his people, and the fury they were in, sent to me to 
Berwick, to let me know that no power of his could warrant my life at that time; there- 
fore, to prevent further mischief, he would send me no convoy, but would send two of his 
council to the bound road, to receive my letters, or what other message I had to deliver. 
... I was commanded to accept the king's offer. Sir George Hume and the master of 
Melven met me at the bound road, where I delivered my message in writing, and my let- 
ters from the queen to the king; and then came presently post to court, where I had 
thanks of her majesty for what I had done." (Memoirs, p. 12, edit. 1808.) The letter 
from Elizabeth to James, of which Cary was the bearer, and the contents of which are 
mentioned in the following letter, is stated to be in the possession of sir George Warrender. 
(Tytler's Hist. Scotland, ix. 5.) We are now to present James's answer, which is, in fact, 
his acceptance of Elizabeth's apology for having put his mother to death. It is printed 
from a fair draft or copy, altogether in James's handwriting. I know no reason to doubt 
that it was actually sent, but I am not aware of any evidence that it was so. 

Madame and dearest sister, Quhairas by your lettir and bearare, 
Robert Carey youre seruand and ambassadoure, ye purge youre self 
of yone unhappy fact. As, on the one pairt, considdering your rank 
and sex, consanguinitie and longe professed good will to the de- 
funct, together with youre many and solemne attestationis of youre 
innocentie, I darr not wronge you so farre as not to iudge honorablie 
of youre unspotted pairt thairin, so, on the other syde, I uishe that 
youre honorable behauioure in all tymes heirafter may fully per- 
suaide the quhole uorlde of the same. And, as for my pairt, I looke 
that ye will geue me at this tyme suche a full satisfaction, in all 
respectis, as sail be a meane to strenthin and unite this yle, es- 
tablish and maintaine the treu religion, and obleig me to be, as of 
befoire I war, youre most louing. 


This bearare hath sumquhat to informe you of in my name, 
quhom I neid not desyre you to credit, for ye knou I loue him. 





The queen is ready to drink of the river of Lethe and resume her friend- 
ship with James, to whom she makes a solemn imprecation in proof 
of her innocency as to the death of queen Mary professes deep 
anxiety to serve him thanks him for his communication to Cary of 
offers made to him by other powers warns him of their designs, and 
begs him either to persecute her as his foe, or, if he will accept her 
friendship, to use her like a prince who fears none but God. 

The kingdoms of England and Scotland continued partially estranged for some few 
months after the death of Mary, at first unwillingly so on the part of James, but he ultimately 
yielded to the indignation of his subjects, and, for a little while, felt as bitterly against Eli- 
zabeth as any one. In the meantime Elizabeth's difficulties increased. The probability was 
daily augmenting that the long threatened preparations of Spain would shortly issue in 
some attempt at an English invasion. The English queen knew that her enemies were 
endeavouring to secure the aid of Scotland, in which there was a large party ready to join 
them on the slightest summons, and she determined to thwart them. With that view she 
sent her relative, Henry Cary lord Hunsdon, to renew her old intimacy with James. Huns- 
don accomplished his embassy with as much success as could be hoped. James explained 
to the English ambassador what tempting offers he had received from Spain, but assured 
Elizabeth (I use the words of Mr. Tytler) " that she could not detest more deeply than 
himself the plots of the papists; that none of the messengers of Antichrist, their common 
enemy, should be encouraged ; and that his single reason for suspending their usual loving 
intelligence was a feeling that she had failed to vindicate herself from the guilt of his 
mother's blood." (Hist. Scotland, ix. 21.) The following letter was written by Eliza- 
beth to James upon Hunsdon's return to England. It is entirely in the queen's hand. 

My pen, my deare brother, hathe remained so long dry as I sup- 
pose hit hardly wold have taken ynke againe, but, mollefied by the 
good justice that with your owne person you have bine pleased to 
execute,* togither with the large assurance that your wordes have 

* " To prove his sincerity against the catholics, he [James] summoned his forces, at- 
tacked the castle of Lochmaben, . . . and, reinforced by an English battering train, beat 
the castle about the ears of its captain, whom he hanged, with six of his men." Tytler's 
Scotland, ix. 21. 


given to some of my ministars, wiche all dothe make me ready to 
drinke most willingly a large draught of the rivar of Lethe, never 
minding to thinke of unkindnes, but to turne my yees to the making 
vp of that sure amitie and stanche good wyll wiche may be pre- 
sently concluded in ending our league, that so unhappyly, to my 
harts grife, was delaied and differd, assuring you, on the faith of a 
Christian and worde of a king, that my hart cannot accuse my con- 
science of one thoght that might infringe our frindship, or let so good 
a worke. God the chersar of all harts euer so haue misericorde of 
my soule as my innocencye in that mattar deserveth, and no other- 
wise ; wiche invocation wer to dangerous for a gilty conscience ; as 
I have commanded this bearar more at large to tel you. And for 
your part, my deare brother, thinke, and that with most truith, that, 
if I find you willing to imbrase hit, you shal find of me the carefulst 
prince of your quiet gouuernment, ready to assist you with forse, 
with treasor, counsel, or any thing you shal haue nede of, as muche 
as in honor you can require, or upon cause you shal nede. You 
may the more soundly trust my vowes, for never yet wer the stained, 
nether wil I make you the first on whom I shal bestowe untruthe, 
wiche God wyl not suffer me live unto. 

I have millions of thankes to rendar you, that so frankely told to 
Gary suche offers as wer made you, wiche I doute not but you shall 
euer haue cause to reioyse that you refuse ; for wher the meane to 
weken your surest frind, so be you assured the intended to subiect you 
and yours. For you see how the deale euen with ther owne in al coun- 
tries lessar than ther one, and therfor God, for your best, I assure my- 
selfe, wil not let youfaule into suche an aperte daunger, undar the cloke, 
for al that, of harming other and aduansing you ; but I hope you wil 
take Ulisses wexe to saue you from suche sirenes. Hit wer most ho- 
norable for you, if so hit please you, to let them knowe that you neuer 
sent for ther horse, thogh some of your lords (to bold with you in many 
ther notions and over sawsy in this) made them beliue you con^ 
sented to ther message, wiche the themselues desired your pardon 
for. This wyl make them feare you more hereafter, and make them 


affraid to attempt you to weaken your assured frind. If I deserue 
not your amitie persecute me as your foe ; but being yours, use me 
like a prince who feareth none but God. 

Your most assured loving sistar and cousin, 

[A ddressedi] 
To our good brother and cousin, 

the king of Scotland. 
[Indorsed in another hand,] 
15 Maij, 1588. 

No. XXIX. 



The queen's satisfaction in James's belief that her truth in relation to 
queen Mary's death is so manifestly proved, and that he is determined 
to defend his own country against the Spaniards duplicity attributed 
to him by iJieir enemies she has sent an ambassador to conclude a 
league witii him what does he mean by " satisfaction " for queen 
Mary's death ? 

Whatever might be Elizabeth's expressed confidence in the sincerity of James's enmity 
against the Spaniards, it is not to be supposed that she really felt anything of the kind. 
Hunsdon's impression of the Scottish sovereign was, that the queen need not " look for 
amity or kind dealing at his hand. ... If there were any good inclination in him towards 
your highness," continued Hunsdon, " which I neither find nor believe to be, yet he hath 
such bad company about him, and so maliciously bent against your highness, they will not 
suffer him to remain in it two days together." (Murdin, p. 591.) Still, whatever might 
be James's dislike to Elizabeth, his interest in the succession to the English throne pre- 
vented his making any profession of friendliness to the crusading invaders of England. 
Elizabeth, as cunning as himself, played with him during the period of danger. Some 
further communication seems to have ensued after the return of Hunsdon, the result of 
which appears in the following letter. James professed himself determined to resist all 
foreign invasion either of England or Scotland, but left a door of quarrel open by harping 
upon " satisfaction " for the death of his mother. Elizabeth replied in the following auto- 
graph letter, which she sent by William Ashby as her ambassador. 



I am greatly satisfied, my deare brother, that I find, by your 
owne graunt, that you bilive the trothe of my actions so manifestly 
openly proved, and thanke you infinitely that you profes so constant 
defence of your country, togither [with] myne, from all Spaniardz 
or strangers ; a matter fur otherwise given out by bothe our enemies, 
withe blotting your fame with assurance of doble dealing, as thogh 
you assured them under-hand to betake you to ther course ; wiche, 
what a stain hit wer in a princis honor, you yourselfe in jugement 
can wel deme. For my part, I wyl ever trust your word, til I be 
so sure of the contrary. Right wel am I persuaded that your 
greatest daunger shuld chanche you by crossing your strait pathes, 
for he that hathe two stringes to his bowe may shoute stronger, but 
never strait ; and he that hathe no sure foundation cannot but ruine. 
God kipe you ever therfor in your wel-begone pathe. 

I have sent you this gentleman, as wel to declare my good agre- 
ment to send some finischars of our leage, as other matters wiche he 
hathe to communicate unto you, if hit please you to heare him ; as 
my desiar of answering your good frindeship and amitie in as ample 
sort as with honor I may, as one that never seakes more of you than 
that wiche shal be best for your selfe. Assure your selfe of me, 
therfor, and shewe by dides ever to mantaine hit, and never was 
ther in christendome betwine two princes surar amitie nor soundar 
dealing. I vowe hit, and wil performe hit 

And for that you speake oft of satisfaction, I haue much vrged, 
as now againe I do, to knowe what therby is ment, sins I bothe 
mynde, and also do, whatsoever may honorably be required of suche 
as I profes myselfe ; and therfor, I require you therin to answer 
me. And so, trusting that all your protestations lately made me 
by Gary shalbe readely performed, togither with your constant reso- 
lute cours of late professed, I end to molest you longar, but, with 
my thankes to God that any your offendars be entred to your hands, 
and not the les not having bine done without some of our helpe, 
whiche glads me no les than [if it had] happened to our selfe, whose 
forse shal never faile you in all leaful causes; as knoweth God, 


who euer bles you from all malignant spiritz, and increas your 
happy yeres. 

Your most assurest sistar and cousin, 


To our right deere brother, 
the king of Scotland. 

9 July, 1588. 

No. XXX. 



Profuse professions of anxiety on the part of the Scottish king to be em- 
ployed in the defence of England, not as a stranger but a compatriot. 

The history of the following letter may be gathered from the circumstances of the time 
and a paper printed in Murdin, p. 631. On the 17th July the armada was first descried 
off the Lizard. There immediately ensued that memorable succession of engagements 
which terminated in its entire defeat. On the 27th July, the very day on which the 
shattered fleet cast anchor " near to Calais road," the Scottish ambassador applied to secre- 
tary Walsingham to know " what course his master should be advised to take." Walsingham 
replied, that it would be agreeable alike to Elizabeth and the English people if he were to 
send " by some gentlemen of good sort to make offer to her majesty ... to be ready with 
his person and forces to do what he may for the advancement of the general cause." Wal- 
singham added, that if the ambassador would write " with expedition," and send his letters 
to him, he would cause them to be conveyed with all possible speed. Walsingham wrote 
at Richmond, at 11 o'clock in the night of the 27th July ; the following letter is dated at 
Edinburgh on the 1st August, and is in the very terms which Walsingham suggested. 
Within a few days after it was written the miserable relics of the invincible armada were 
off the coast of Scotland, scudding northward ; escaping in that way the patriotic fury of 
the English seamen, but only to encounter the equally deadly rage of the tempestuous 

Madame and dearest sister, In tymes of straitis trewe freindis are 
best tryit Now meritis he thankis of yow and your countray quho 
kythis himselfe a freind to your countray and estate ; and so this 
tyme must move me to utter my zele to the religioun, and how neir 
a kinsman and neighbour I finde myself to yow and your countrey. 


For this effect then have I sent yow this present, hereby to offer unto 
yow my forces, my personn, and all that I may command, to be im- 
ployd agains yone strangearis in quhatsumever facon, and by quhat- 
sumever meane, as may best serue for the defense of your countray. 
Wherein I promes to behave myselff, not as a strangear and foreyne 
prince, hot as your natural sonne and compatriot of your countrey in 
all respectis. Now, madame, to conclude, as, on the one pairt, I 
must hartlie thank you for your honorable begynning by your am- 
bassadour in offres for my satisfaction, so, on the other pairt, I pray 
yow to send presentlie doun commissioneris for the perfyting of the 
same ; quhilk I protest I desyre, not for that I wald have the rewaird 
to preceid the desertis, bot onelie that I with honour, and all my gude 
subiectis with a fervent guid will, may imbrace this your godlie and 
honest cause, quhaireby your adversaries may have ado not with 
England but with the whole ile of Bretayne. Thus, praying yow to 
dispeche all your materis with all possible speid, and wishing yow a 
successe convenient to those that are inuadit by Goddes professed 
enemies, I commit, madame and dearest sister, your persoun estate 
and countray to the blessed protection of the Almighty. From Edin- 
burgh, the first of August, 1588. 

Your most louing and affectionate brother and cousin, 

as tyme sail now trye, JAMES R. 

No. XXXI. 



T/ie armada having been " well-beaten in our narrow seas" has been 
carried to the coast of Scotland, ivhere the queen doubts not it will re- 
ceive small succour, unless the traitors who have been plotting with 
Spain have been left at liberty this tyrannical, proud, and brainsick 
attempt ivill be the beginning of the ruin of the king of Spain ; he has 
procured Elizabeth's greatest glory. 

This noble letter, written by Elizabeth in the very culminating moment of her " greatest 
glory," is full of that energy which more or less pervades every thing that fell from her 


pen. The persons whom she pretends to believe James cannot have left at liberty were, of 
course, Huntly and the other catholic earls who were continually intriguing with Spain 
through the Jesuits. Her ambassador whom she so highly praises was Sir Robert Sidney. 
This letter is printed in Rymer's Fcedera, together with the one immediately preceding, 
(vol. xvi. 18, 19,) but with such blanks and mistakes as fully justify their being reprinted. 
Rymer printed from transcripts in the Cotton MS. Caligula, D. I. Mr. Ryder possesses a 
contemporary copy of James's letter, and the original of Elizabeth's striking reply. 

Now may appeare, my deare brother, how malice conioined with 
might strivest * to make a shameful end to a vilanous beginning, for, 
by Godz singular fauor, having ther flete wel-beaten in our narow 
seas, and pressing, with all violence, to atcheue some watering place, 
to continue ther pretended invation, the windz have carried them to 
your costes, wher I dout not the shal receaue smal succor and les 
welcome ; vnles thos lordz that, so traitors like, wold belie ther owne 
prince, and promis another king reliefe in your name, be suffred to 
live at libertye, to dishonor you, peril you, and aduance some other 
(wiche God forbid you suffer them live to do). Therfor I send you 
this gentilman, a rare younge man and a wise, to declare unto yov 
my ful opinion in this greate cause, as one that neuer wyl abuse you 
to serve my owne turne ; nor wyl you do aught that myselfe wold 
not perfourme if I wer in your place. You may assure yourselfe 
that, for my part, I dout no whit but that all this tirannical prowd 
and brainsick attempt wil be the beginning, thogh not the end, of the 
ruine of that king, that, most unkingly, euen in midz of treating 
peace, begins this wrongful war. He hathe procured my greatest 
glory that ment my sorest wrack, and hathe so dimmed the light of 
his svnshine, that who hathe a wyl to obtaine shame let them kipe his 
forses companye. But for al this, for yourselfe sake, let not the 
frendz of Spain be suffred to yeld them forse ; for thogh I feare not 
in the end the sequele, yet if, by leaving them unhelped, you may 
increase the Englisch hartz unto you, you shal not do the worst dede 
for your behalfe ; for if aught shuld be done, your excuse wyl play 
the boiteu-v ; if you make not sure worke with the likely men to do 
hit. Looke wel unto hit, I besiche you. 

The necessity of this matter makes my skribling the more spidye, 

* So in the orig. 


hoping that you wyl mesure my good affection with the right balance 
of my actions, wiche to you shalbe euer suche as I haue professed, 
not douting of the reciproque of your behalfe, according as my last 
messengier unto you hathe at large signefied, for the wiche I rendar 
you a milion of grateful thankes togither, for the last general prohi- 
bition to your subiectz not to fostar nor ayde our general foe, of wiche 
I dout not the obseruation if the ringeleaders be safe in your handz ; 
as knoweth God, who euer haue you in his blessed kiping, with many 
happy yeres of raigne. 

Your most assured louing sistar and cousin, 

To my verey good brother the king of Scottz. 




The king writes on the sudden return of an English ambassador thanks 
the queen for money, which he will repay with forces when required 
the Spanish fleet never came within " a kenning " of tlie coasts of 

The ambassador who is referred to in the following letter was, as I suppose and have no 
doubt, sir Robert Sidney, brother of sir Philip, in which case, the uncle whose sudden 
death occasioned the ambassador's unexpected return to England was the celebrated 
Robert Dudley earl of Leycester. Camden mentions that sir Robert Sidney was in Scot- 
land in 1588, and returned in time to augment the general joy at the defeat of the armada 
with tidings of the constant amity of the Scottish king, but he does not mention the pay- 
ment of " the simmns of money" which are alluded to in this letter, and which were, no 
doubt, among the causes of James's constant amity. It will perhaps be thought that 
James refers very slightingly to the death of a person so distinguished in the court of Eli- 
zabeth as her favourite Leycester. 

Madame and dearest sister, The suddaine pairting of this honor- 
able gentleman, youre ambassadoure, upon thaise unfortunatt and 
displeasant neuis of his onkle, hes mouit me with the more haist to 
trace theis feu lynes unto you ; first, to thanke you, as uell for the 
sending so rare a gentleman unto me, to quhose brother I was so 


farrc beholden ; as also, for the tayce * sending me such summes of 
money, quhiche, according to the league, I sail thankfullie repaye 
with forces of men, quhensoeuer youre estait sail so requyre, accord- 
ing as my last letter hath maid you certified ; not doubting but, as 
ye haue honorable begunn, so ye uill follou foorth youre course to- 
uardis me, quhiche thairby f I shall so procure the concurrence of all 
my goode subjectis with me in tin's course as sail make my friend- 
shippe the more steadable unto you. The next is to pray you most 
hairtly, that in any thing concerning this gentleman fallin out by the 
death of his onkle, ye will haue a fauorable consideration of him for 
my sayke, that he may not haue occasion to repent him of his aV 
sence at suche a tyme. All other things I remitt to his credite, pray- 
ing you to thinke of me as of one qulio constantlie shall contineu his 
professed course, and remaine, 

Youre most louing and affectionat brother and cousin, 


Postcrip. I thocht goode, in kaice of sinistre reportis, madame, 
hereby to assure you that the Spanishe flete neuer entered uithin 
any roade or heauen within my dominion, nor neuer came uithin a 
kenning neere to any of my costis. 




The queen sends an ambassador with " some tokens" in sign of her con- 
gratulation upon James's approaching marriage but for her honour's 
sake, she would have hied post to be present at the marriage the affec- 
tion which she has borne from childhood to the parents of his bride. 

This letter, and several subsequent ones, have relation to the period of the marriage of 

* So in the orig. The word which the transcriber mistook was perhaps " layte." 
f Perhaps this ought to be, " quhiche- whairby." 


king James. The present one was written, as it seems to me, at the time when the espoused 
queen, having set sail from her native Denmark, was daily expected to arrive in Scotland. It 
is well known that she was obliged by long-continued contrary winds to take shelter in a 
port of Norway, and that James most chivalrously set sail from Scotland and fetched her 
from the obscure harbour in which she had found refuge. 

As no tidinges, my most deare brother, can euer come out of sea- 
son to me that may brede you honor or contentement, so this last 
newes, thogh soudaine, of the aproching neare of your coming quene, 
bids me so muche to bode you all the best blessings that the mighty 
God can send you, as in witnis therof to salute you bothe with an 
embassader, and some tokens, for signe of the happinis I wische that 
feast, and the gladnis my hart shuld haue receued if hit wer as law- 
full to honor hit with my presence as hit is sure that I bles hit with 
my orasonns. And for that the spide of suche a bargen was far 
greatar than the expectation of her arrivall, you wyll, I trust, blame 
yourselfe, and impute no neglect to me, that my messangers come 
after the solempnites : for I assure you, but for my honor sake, my 
wyl wold haue hied ther post with smaller company than fitz my 
place. And in meane while, let hit content you to giue me so 
muche right as to assure yourselfe no witnis ther of so princely a 
pact shall wische hit more succes, nor greatar lasting joy, than my- 
selfe, that wischeth sign king no longar while than to see the per- 
fourmance of suche alliance, hauinge besides yourself, wiche is the 
principall, an inward zele, wiche, sins my childhold, I haue borne to 
the parentes of your honorable quene, to whome I desiar all felicitie, 
and neuer shal skrape from my memorye the intire loue the bare me ; 
as knoweth God, who euer bles you and gide you. 

Your most assured loving sistar and cousin, 

To my deare brother the king of Skotes. 





The. queen's thankfulness that James 1 s untimely and evil-seasoned journey 
has so far prospered warns him of dangerous intrigues which are 
in progress during his absence and which are to be attributed to his 
own past foolish levity urges him to hie his return and to give needful 
directions in the mean time returns her thanks for a proposal for 
peace with Spain, which she supposes came through him her wrongs 
are such as a king ought rather to die than not avenge, but she will 
not oppose any proposal for stopping Christian blood. 

This letter was written to James during his absence in Denmark. The conspiracies 
alluded to were those of Huntly and his confederates, the great " catholic earls " of 

Althogh my faithe stands me, my deare brother, in so good stede, 
as, without assurance by any one [but] your owne hand-worke, I do 
beliue that God hathe, of his goodnes more than your hide, prosperd 
to good end your vntimely and, if I dare tel truthe, ivel-seasoned 
journey, yet I may no longar, thogh my courage could stay me til 
you first began, that best hathe cause to acknowelege thankfulnes, 
stay but let you knowe, what humble sacrifice of thankes I yeld to 
the Omnipotent for your safest stop for al your hard cours, and am 
so bold to chalenge some part of that seurty to my heartiest oraisons 
powred out of no fained lippes, wiche best is pleasing to his eares. 
And do beseche the same to send you, in this noble-raced linage, 
suche lasting joy as the continuance may yeld you bothe happy. 

And now to talke with you frely as paper may vttar conceit Ec- 
cept my howrely care for your broken countrey, to to muche infected 
with the maladie of strangers humors, and to receue no medecin so 
wel compounded as if the owner make the mixture appropriatted to 
the qualetye of the siknes. Knowe you, my deare brother, for certaine, 



that thos ulcers that wer to muche skined with the doulcenes of your 
applications wer but falsly shaded, and wer within filled with suche 
venom as hathe burst out sins your departure with most lewd 
offers to another king to enter your land, with declaration of ther as- 
sured perfourinance of ther by-passed helpes, and numbars great to 
take ether part If with my yees I had not vewed thes treasons, I 
would be aschamed to write them you. And shal I tel you my 
thoght herein ? I assure you, you ar wel worthy of suche traitors, 
that, whan you knewe them, and had them, you betraied your owne 
seurty in fauoring ther Hues. Good Lord! who but yourself wold 
haue left suche peple to be abel to do you wrong. Giue ordar with 
spide that suche skape not your correction, and hie your retourne, 
that is more your honor than a other mans land, without you mynde 
to make you seme innocent of your realmes ruine, whan absence wil 
sarue but for your bad excuse. Sild recouvers kings ther dominion 
whan greattar posses hit, yea, suche as ther owne skars may indure 
for ther tirany. 

My deare brother, you see how fur my intire care drawes me out 
of the limites that anothers affaires shuld plucke me to, but all suche 
error I hope you wyl impute to affection, not my curiositie, and beare 
with ouerplaine imputation, sins hit springs of so good a roote. I 
craue of you, for your owne best, to authorize, yea, animate, your 
faithfulst and giltles of this conspiratie, that the feare not to appre- 
hend in time (I pray God not to late), all suche as any way the may 
suspect or knowe to be pertakers of this faction. Beliue no more to 
dandel such babies, as may, or they come to honestie, shake your 
chaire, for you haue had to sowre experience what suche vane opinions 
hath bred you. I wyl not faile, from time to other, to warne suche 
as I may thinke most clere of this infection of all my knowelege in 
this dangerous season, daring so muche in your absence as to animat 
them not to lingar this great mattar til your retourne, for I knowe 
that wer to late ; the dayes that the haue giuen ar shortar than to 
expect so longe. If my prayers wer not more than my good [writing], 
I shuld be sory to retaine your yees on so rude skribling, wherfor I 


end, with my incessant prayers to God for your safe kiping and ioy- 
f ul retourne. 

Your most affectionat lovinge si star and cousin, 

To my deere brother and cousin the king of Scotland. 

After the finisching of my lettar, ther came to my handz an overtur 
that makes me suppose hit could not, nor durst not, haue bine offerd 
me without your consent, albeit for hit I nether saw your commis- 
sion nor receued from you one word therof, but for al that, hit 
makes me see that your sight serues you not alone for present vewe, 
but makes you to beholde the state of distant countries wiche do fele 
the smart of my vndeserued hate, and makes the innocent bloud cal 
for reuenge of euel-framed iniuries. And thogh my conscience cannot 
accuse my thoghts to haue by any cause procured suche an ennemy, 
and that he hathe to plainlye soght my life and kingdome, yet, I 
think myselfe obliged to you that wold make end of so uniust a war, 
and acknowelege the ded king of famous memorie * more happy in 
suche faithful councelars than I see many kings in ther liuing ser- 
uantz. And for that they offer me, I wyl euer cronicle them 
amonge the iust fulfillars of true trust. And albeit my wrongs be 
suche as nature of a king aught rather, for ther particular, dye than 
not reuenge, yet the' top of my courage shal neuer ouerstreche my 
hart from care of Christian bloud, and for that alone, no feare of him, 
I protest to God, from whom bothe iust quarel, faithful subjectz, and 
valiant acts I dout not wil defend : yet, am I thus content that you 
shal folowe the wel-deuised methode, and if he wyl giue playne 
grant without a gileful meaning, I wil make knowen that in me the 
lack of so good a worke shal neuer be found. 

* Frederick II. of Denmark died 4th April 1588. His ministers, then in the service 
of his son and successor, and James, during his stay in Denmark, set on foot a proposal for 
a peace between England and Spain, to which this postscript alludes. 


No. XXXV. 



Congratulations upon James's return to Scotland with his queen he is 
urged to punish those of his subjects ivho have been plotting in his 
absence, and is forewarned of danger in case he neglects the queen 
knows that " some had the view of her letters " if her admonitions 
vain she will counsel no more. 

James having returned home, the queen reiterates the advice contained in her last letter. 
Neglect of her forewarning soon produced the results which she anticipated. 

The strife is great, my deare brother, wiche shuld win, ether the 
care of your perilous journey or the joy of your safe retourne, but, 
leuing them in ther batail, I assure you I can scars giue a tru verdit 
who is the victorar, but only this I dare say, that no one that liveth 
thankes God more deuoutly for al your eskapes, nor is more joyful of 
your sure arrivall than myself, who could not stay but salute you, 
togither with your honorable espouse, and by this ambassade make 
you know how grateful suche newes wer to me, besichen God to bles 
you withe suche benedictions as he bestoith with largist giftes, and 
make your contentementz long and prosperous. 

And now that you bied wher yourself, I doubt not, wyl haue an 
accownt of what in your absence hathe bine ordred, I hope you wyl 
not be careles of suche practisis as hathe passed from any of yours 
without your commission, spetially suche attemptz as might ruin your 
realme and danger you. If any respect whatever make you neglect 
so expedient a worke, I am affraid your careles hide wil worke your 
unlocked danger. Thinke not but I knowe how some had the vewe 
of my lettars, in wiche you did your selfe les honor than to me 
harme, and yet you see hit warnes me not ynough from againe to 
ventur the like hap. But as no hate to any of them (God I cal to 
witnis) procured me hireto, so only care of your sure gouuernement 
hathe made me deale this far, and, if I see al admonition so uaine, I 
wil hireafter wische al wel, but counsel no more at all. I can not 


forget to reiterat my thankes for suche your offars as hit pleased you 
by justice-clarke to make me, and as I shal hire more therof from 
you I shal concur with you in so holy an action. And thus I end 
troubling you with my skribling, with my prayers to the Almighty 
for al prosperitie in your dayes. 

Your most affectionat sistar and cousin, 


To our deere and loving 
brother the king of Scotland. 




The king thanks Elizabeth for acquainting him with certain intercepted 
letters he has sent the laird of Wemyss to establish a solid friendship 
between England and Scotland, and to solicit the queerfs advice as to 
how the king may settle his state and person in such respects as may be 
required of one of his age and calling. 

The following extract from Tytler's Hist, of Scotland, ix. 27, sufficiently illustrates this 
letter. " Letters were intercepted by Burghley which proved in the clearest manner an 
intended rebellion [in Scotland], They were seized on the person of a Scotsman, who was 
detected carrying them to the prince of Parma, and expressed, on the part of Huntly, 
Morton, Errol, and the rest of the catholic noblemen and gentry of Scotland, their infinite 
regret at the discomfiture of the Armada . . they assured the Spanish king that six 
thousand Spaniards once landed there [in Scotland] would be joined by an infinite 
multitude of Scotsmen animated with the bitterest hatred to England, and who would serve 
him as faithfully as his own subjects . . Copies of these letters were instantly sent 
down to James." Mr. Tytler adds, what, but for our knowledge of James's habitual deceit- 
fulness, would appear very strange to the reader of the following letter, that James " at 
first disbelieved the whole story, and dealt so leniently with the principal conspirators, that 
the plot, instead of being crushed in its first growth, spread its ramifications throughout the 
country, especially the northern counties, and grew more dangerous than before. Huntly 
was indeed imprisoned, but his confinement was a mere farce. The king visited him in 


his chamber and dined there; permitted his wife and servants to communicate freely with 
him ; wrote him an affectionate remonstrance, and even kissed and caressed him." An open 
rebellion, which was easily put down, was the result. This letter has been unfortunately 
misplaced. It should have been No. XXXIII. 

Madame and dearest sister, I uaire to inexcusablie to blaime of 
inaqualitie, if I should prease by complements of wordis, to conter- 
uail your actionis touardis me at this time, in the cairfull, kynde, and 
freindlie acquenting me with such intercepted letteris, as micht con- 
cerne my persone and estait My thankfullness, then, must kythe 
in actionis, quliich ye may assure yourself shall at no tyme be 
spairid for the uellfair of your person, estait, and cuntrie. My dili- 
gence, in the mean tyme, for tryall of this practices, I remit to the 
daylie report of youre ambassadour heir,* and for the obuiating of 
those and the like assaultes of Sathan against this yle, I have heir- 
uith directed unto you my trustie and familiare seruant the lairde of 
Ueimis, alsueill by establishing a solid freindship amongst us to 
strenthen this yle against all the aueiud inuaideris thair of, as to 
craue youre aduyce for my particulare behauioure in preparing my- 
self and cuntrie as the necesitie of the time shall require ; and 
speciallye, hou to settle my stait and person in suche respectis as may 
be requiyred of one of my age and calling. But, remitting the par- 
ticulairis heirof to my ambassadoure, quhom I pray you firmlie to 
trust, 1 will, with my many and hairtiest thankes unto you for your 
so louing using of me at this tyme, committ you to the safe protec- 
tion of the Allmichtie. From my palleys of Holirud house, the 
xviij. daye of March 1588. 

Your most louing and affectionate brother and cousin, 


I pray you, madame, to cause hasten hir the commissioneris of the 
Lou Contreys for the reparation of thaise debtis craved by some of 
my subjects. 

* William Ashby was at this time resident English ambassador in Scotland. 





Elizabeth is well recompensed for all her trouble taken for James 
by the affection expressed on his behalf by the bearer rise of a 
dangerous sect who would have no kings but a presbytery James w 
requested to stop the mouths or make shorter the tongues of the minis- 
ters in Scotland who pray for those who are persecuted in England 
for the sake of the gospel and not to harbour English traitors. 

The following letter was sent to James by sir John Carmichael, whom the Scottish 
monarch had deputed to the English court upon a special embassy in relation to a proposal 
for a general peace. Mr. Tytler has printed it with a few variations (Hist. Scotland, ix. 
54) from a copy preserved in the state paper office, which gives the date under which I 
have placed it. The bitter passages respecting the English presbyterians shew in what 
way Elizabeth regarded the proceedings of Travers, Cartwright, and their coadjutors. 

Greatar promises, more affection, and grauntz of more acknowe- 
legings of receued good turnes, my deare brother, none can bettar 
remember than this gentilman by your charge hathe made me 
understand; wherby I thinke all my endeuors wel recompensed, 
that see them so wel acknoweleged ; and do trust that my counsel es, 
if the so muche content you, wil serue for memorialz to turne your 
actions to serue the turne of your safe gouernement, and make the 
lookars-on honor your worthe, and reuerence suche a rular. 

And lest fayre semblance, that easely may begile, do not brede 
your ignorance of suche persons as ether pretend religion or dis- 
semble deuotion, let me warne you that ther is risen, bothe in your 
realme and myne, a secte of perilous consequence, suche as wold 
haue no kings but a presbitrye, and take our place while the inioy 
our privilege, with a shade of Godes word, wiche non is juged to 
folow right without by ther censure the be so demed. Yea, looke 
we wel unto them. Whan the haue made in our peoples hartz a 
doubt of our religion, and that we erre if the say so, what perilous 


issue this may make I rather thinke than mynde to write. Sapienti 
pauca* I pray you stap the mouthes, or make shortar the toungz, 
of suche ministars as dare presume to make oraison in ther pulpitz 
for the persecuted in Ingland for the gospel. 

Suppose you, my deare brother, that I can tollerat suche scan- 
dalz of my sincere gouuernement ? No. I hope, howsoeuer you 
be pleased to beare with ther audacitie towards your selfe, yet you 
wil not suffar a strange king receaue that indignitie at suche cater- 
pilars hand, that, instede of fruit, I am affraid wil stuf your realme 
with venom. Of this I haue particularisd more to this bearar, to- 
gither with other answers to his charge, besiching you to heare them, 
and not to giue more harbor-rome to vacabond traitors and seditious 
inventors, but to returne them to me, or banische them your land. 
And thus, with my many thankes for your honorable intertaine- 
mentz of my late embassade,* I commit you to God. who euer 
preserue you from al iuel counsel, and send you grace to folow the 


Your most assured loving sistar and cousin, 
[Addressed^ ELIZABETH R. 

To my deere brother, 
the king of Scotland. 




Letter of thanks to James for delivering up to the queen her <e lewd 
rebel? ivith emphatic promises of similar conduct on her part, if the 
occasion should arise. 

The "lewd rebel," to whom the following letter relates, was Brien O'Rourke, a native 

* The earl of Worcester was sent to Edinburgh in June 1590 to invest the Scottish 
monarch with the order of the garter. 


Irish chieftain. He was arraigned at Westminster upon a charge of treason on the follow- 
ing 28th October. The indictment was explained to him by a sworn interpreter for 
O'Rourke was ignorant of English. He refused to be tried by a jury unless he had counsel 
assigned to defend him, and unless the queen would be one of the jurors. Sentence of 
death was passed upon him, and he was executed at Tyburn, with all the customary hor- 
rors, on the 3rd November, 1591. A particular account of this terrible act of barbarity 
is given by Stowe and Camden. The case is not printed in the collections of state 

My deare brother, As ther is naught that bredes more for-thinking 
repentance and agrived thoughtes than good turnes to harme the 
giuers ayde,* so hathe no bonde euer tied more honorable mynds, 
than the shewes of any acquital by grateful acknowelegement in 
plain actions ; for wordes be leues and dides the fruites. Wiche I 
may not forget to remember in your present fact, granted so frely, 
in deliuering up my lewde rebel, whose person and forse, thogh ne- 
ther be aught worthe, as who, for his greatnes, being a base varlet, 
drawes few for sequel, nor his birthe so great as a meanar than a 
prince nides feare, yet I wold haue bine agrived that so lewde a 
mynd shuld haue found fauor in so deare a brothers dominion, 
and do assure you, that I wil lay this part in the safest cornar of 
my memorye, to serue me for example of a like acquital, if suche 
ivel accident shuld happen you. And in meane while, thanke my- 
selfe, not you alone, that haue made so good a choise of so sounde 
an election upon whom to spend the chifest care of my endeuors, as 
I hope you haue hiretofore tried, and this may make increase. 

The two gentilmen, I trust, shal receaue your thanke for per- 
fourming so wel ther charge, wiche, I beseche you for my sake, the 
may receaue; not a litel wondring why your subiectz of Glasco 
shuld doute the stop of ther trafique for so poore a caytife, who was 
neuer of abilitie to make or giue trafique. The ar sorely misin- 
fourmed of his greatnes. A few sort of outlawes fils up his traine, 
and of the meanest sort. I trust you wyl make them knowe your 
faithful ministars must not be niknamed " the English feade men." 

* i. e. good turns made to conduce to the harm of the doer. 


I protest I haue no suche in your realme, for, if the principal faile 
me, I shal neuer care for adiacentia. 

I rendar for this my most loving and deare thankes, acknoweleg- 
ing the kinnes more than the act, and bothe so honorable as shal 
neuer be blotted out of my thankefulst mynde, adding therto the 
sincere ordar giuen for our bordars matters ; tokens sufficient to 
shewe your grateful hart and princely mynd, wiche I meane to re- 
quite and acknowlege, as knoweth the lining God, who I am sure 
wyl make your subiectz the surar that you abhor anothers traitors. 
Among wiche, I must not forget your most kind vsage in the answer 
that my arche-rebel, Westmarland, shal receue from you, wiche shal 
serue him, and all suche, to knowe that ther neuer shal remane 
with you ether helpe or hap for suche wicked members of a kingly 
rule. This shal retourne to you with triple fold of good regard 
amonge your owne, if the see your justice to anothers traitor, yea to 
suche a one as made me knowe a traitor in my land.* I wyl end to 
troble your yees wuth my skribling, but neuer end to care for you and 
yours as for my owne. God euer bles you, and make you kipe your 
regal authoritie, and make yours knowe you. 

Your most assured loving sistar and cousin, 


To my verey good brother, 
the king of Scotz. 


Resaued from Mr. Bowes, penult. April. 1591. 

* Westmorland is afterwards termed by Elizabeth " the first traitor that ever my reign 





The queen requests the Scottish king to concur with her in assenting to 
the temporary absence of Robert Bowes, Jier ambassador, to attend to 
his private a/airs in Yorkshire and Durham. 

Right high right excellent and mighty prince, our deerest brother 
and cousin, we greete you well. Our servant, Robert Bowes, hold- 
ing the place of our ambassadour with you, hath, upon vrgent cause 
concerning himself in his perticuler state, humbly signified his desier 
to haue som small tyme graunted vnto him for his repayre into 
Yorkshire and the bissoprike of Durham, the places where his landes 
and lyving doo laye, wherein he having receauid som hurt and de- 
triment since the time of his absence, through the charge he hath 
from us with you, is in danger of furder losse if he may not in tyme 
prevent the same ; we haue, therfore, bene pleased for our parte to 
condescend to his humble request herein, as a matter very reasonable 
to be graunted him, as we thinke yourself will also judge of it, and 
be pleased to gyve your good liking and assent thervnto, which we 
desier you to doo, not doubting but in six or eight weekes he shall 
settle and compound his causes in such good sorte as to return again 
well furnished to the place of his charge with you, to your good con- 
tentment. And so, right high right excellent and mighty prynce, 
and deerest brother and cousin, in our most affectionate manner we 
commend vs to you, and you to the protection of Almighty God. 
Given at our mannor of Richmond, the xviij th of October, 1591. 

Your loving sistar and cousin, 
[Addressed,'] ELIZABETH R. 

To the right high right excellent and 

mighty prince, our deerest brother and 

cousin, the king of Scotland. 
[Indorsed,] 1591. 3 Nouemb. Delyvered be Mr. Bowes. 


No. XL. 



The king has awaited Utters from Elizabeth has written thrice without 
reply wisJies to be informed, 1st, respecting BuccleucKs detention at 
Berwick for some border matter, and, 2nd, respecting the non-pay- 
ment of the pension allowed by Elizabeth to James, respecting which 
he writes with considerable indignation. 

Madame and derest sister, Your silence hathe bein so long, and I 
haue so long awaited upon your breaking thairof, that I am forced 
now at last to remember you again by this few lines. I haue written 
thrie letters unto you, and has never as yett recaued answer of any 
of them, aither by word or write, wich movis me to thinke that my 
lettres neuer came to youre hands, especially my last, quhairin I 
wrote als plainly, and als louingly, unto you as I could. Quhat can 
I thinke, except that aither ye haue bein by sume greatly abused, or 
els in other weghtie affaires greatly distracted ? Howsomever it be, 
I am sure ye could not haue taken a greatar tryall of my patience ; 
but presupposing that my lettres came neuer to youre hands, yet 
could you not be ignorant of the subject of thaime, alswell by Buk- 
leuche his deteaining in Barwick, as by Robert Tousies endles detean- 
ing thair. As for Bukleuche, I thought the greate care and pains 
that all this year I had takin in the bordor matters, togither with his 
delyuerie, had geuin als muche proofe of my good will as deserued 
at the least ane anser, if not thanks. For my part, I am ready to 
perfyte the entrie of the all pledges ; but if that course lyke you not, 
as it appearis by your long delays, I wold lykwais know it. And 
as for Robert Tousies earand, it is turned from one honorable an- 
nuitie to a volantarie uncertaintie almost after long begging, and 
now, at last, to als muche worse than nothing, as there is tyme spent 
in the seeking of it I pray you, madame, excuse my impatience in 
this ; it is no wonder I wearie to be so long time sutire, as one who 
was not borne to be a beggar, but to be beggit at. A short refusall 


had les displeasid me than any anserlesse and disdainfull delay. Re- 
member, that as I ame your kinsman, so am I a true prince. The 
disdaining of me can be noe honor to you. The use of tempting your 
freinds so sore cane turne you to no advantage. If you thinke my 
frendshipe worthie that annuitie, remember, qui cito dot bis dat. Let 
not the circumstances of the giver disgrace the gifte, for I wearie to 
be a suter, and for your pleasure I will promeis neuer to chalenge 
that debt any more if ye will not be contente als frielie to pay it as 
freelie ye promusit it I must, once again, pray you to excuse my 
impatience, for thaire cannot a greater greif cum to an honest hairt 
than to be slightied be thaime at quhose handis he hathe deseruid so 
well as my conscience bearis me upright recorde I have euer done 
at youris. My faulte is the lesse that I complaine of you to your 
selfe ; and I will yet hope that ye will giue furth a just sentence in 
my favour, and applaud my free speaking in pleading my just cause. 
And thus, madame and dearest sister, I committ you to the tuition of 
the Almightie. From Holyrud house, the 24 th December, 1591. 
Your most louing and affectionat brother and cousin, 


No. XLI. &$ 



The queen is grateful for James's escape from great danger which she 
foretold, although, Cassandra like, she was never credited the rebel- 
lion of the catholic lords was the calends of this last attempt she does 
not like to lose labour in giving advice which is of no avail prays 
that God may unseal his eyes. 

The danger alluded to in the following letter arose from one of those violent attempts 
upon the liberty of the sovereign to vrhich James was so often exposed. On the present 
occasion the notorious Bothwell was the actor. Its history is thus given by Mr. Tytler : 
"Attacking the palace of Holyrood at the head of his desperate followers, he [Bothwell] 
had nearly surprised and made prisoners both the king and the chancellor . . An alarm 
was given : the king took refuge in one of the turrets ; the chancellor barricaded his room, 


and bravely beat off the assailants ; whilst the citizens of Edinburgh, headed by their pro- 
vost, rushed into the outer court of the palace, and, cutting their way through the outer 
ranks of the borderers, compelled Bothwell to precipitate flight." Scotland, ix. 64. 

My deare brother, Thogh the heringe of your most daungerous 
peril be that thing that I most reuerently rendar my most lowly 
thankes to God that you, by his mighty hand, hath skaped, yet 
hathe hit bine no other hazard than suche as bothe hathe bine forsien 
and fortold ; but Cassandra was neuer credited til the mishap had 
rather chanched than was prevented. The poore man who, against 
his wyl, was intercepted with all suche epistelz as traitors sent and 
receved, was for reward put to the bootes ; so litel was any thing 
regarded that procided from your best frind, and yet the matter 
made to aparant, or many days after, throw the traiterous assembly 
of your euidant rebelz, that with banner displaied and again you in 
the fild. Thes wer the calendes of this late attempt. I knowe not 
what to write, so litel do I like to loose labor in vaine ; for if I saw 
counsel auaill, or aught pursued in due time or season, I shuld thinke 
my time fortunatly spent to make you reape the due fruit of right 
oportunitie ; but I see you haue no luk to helpe your state, nor to 
assure you from treasons leasur. You giue to muche respit to rid 
your harme and shorten others hast. Wei, I wyl pray for you, 
that God wyl unseal your yees, that to long haue bin shut, and do 
require you thinke that none shal more joy therat than myselfe, that 
most I am sure grives the contrary. Aston hathe told me some of 
your request, to wiche I haue made so reasonable answer as in reason 
may wel content. Praying God to defend you from all mishap or 

Your most assured loving sistar and cousin, 
[Addressed,] ELIZABETH R. 

To my right deare brother the king of Skotz. 

\_Indorsed 9 ~\ Delivered be Roger Ashton, xxviij. Ja ri J 1591. 




Although James had not answered the queen's late letters she cannot 
withhold writing in the midst of the wonders that meet her ears sJie 
reviews her past conduct towards the Scottish king from his childhood 
reminds him of his having disbelieved the discovery of the treason of the 
catholic lords, and put her messenger into the boots a lewd fellow has 
now been apprehended with letters and instructions she intreats that 
he may be well handled she has heard that James has granted a par- 
don to a person who conspired against her she requires that the con- 
spirators be intrapped before they are aware. 

The following letter, which must take a high place among the most vigorous compositions 
of the queen, was written to James upon the discovery of that conspiracy which is familiarly 
known by the name of the Spanish Blanks. Upon the person of George Ker, brother of lord 
Newbottle, who was arrested in one of the small islands at the mouth of the Clyde whilst en- 
deavouring to get away to Spain, were found various mysterious blank papers addressed to 
the king of Spain, and signed by Huntly, Errol, Angus, and the other chiefs of the 
catholic party. Being exposed to torture, the unfortunate messenger confessed that these 
blanks were a contrivance of certain Jesuits, and that they were to be filled up by him 
upon his arrival in Spain in certain forms agreed upon with the persons whose signatures 
they bore, and that they related to a meditated landing of thirty thousand Spanish troops 
in Scotland, who were to be joined by the subscribers with fifteen thousand of their own 
retainers. Upon the first discovery of this dangerous plot, but before its details were fully 
unravelled, Elizabeth addressed the following stimulating letter to the Scottish monarch, 
whose mode of treating the previous conspiracies of the same persons had very much dis- 
pleased her majesty. 

My most deare brother, Wondars and marvelles do so assaill my 
conceatz, as that the long expecting of your nideftil answer to matters 
of suche waight as my late lettars caried nides not seame strange. 
Thogh I knowe the aught be more regardid, and spidely per- 
formed, yet suche I see the emminent danger and wel-ny ready ap- 
proche of your states ruin, your Hues peril, and naighbors wrong, as 
I may not (to kipe you company) neglect what I shuld, thogh you 
forget that you aught. I am sory I am driuen from warninge to 
heed, and from to muche trust to seake a tru way how your dides, 
not your wordz, may make me assurance that you be no way gilty 


of your owne decay and other danger. Receue, therfor, in short, 
what cours I mynd to hold, and how you may make bold of my un- 
fained loue and euer constant regard. 

You knowe, my deare brother, that, sins you first brethed, I re- 
garded alwais to conserue hit as my womb hit had bine you bare. 
Yea, I withstode the handz and helps of a mighty king to make you 
safe, iven gained by the bloud of many my deare subiectz Hues. I 
made myself the bulwark bitwixt you and your harmes whan many 
a wyle was invented to stele you from your land, and making other 
posses your soile. Whan your best holdz wer in my handz, did I 
retaine them ? Nay, I bothe conserved them and rendred them to 
you. Could I indure (thogh to my great expence) that forennars 
shuld haue foteing in your kingdome, albeit ther was than some law- 
fall semblance to make other suppose (that cared not as I did) that 
ther was no danger ment ? No. I neuer left til all the Frenche that 
kept ther life parted from your soile, and so hit pleased the Hiest to 
bles me in that action, as you haue euer sins raigned void of other 
nation than your owne. Now, to preserue this, you haue overslipt 
so many soundry and dangerous attemps, in nether uniting with 
them whan you knewe them, nor cutting them of whan you had 
them, that if you hast no bettar now than hiretofor, hit wyl be to late 
to helpe whan non shal avale you. 

Let me remember you how wel I was thanked, or he rewarded, 
that ons broght all the lettars of all thos wicked conspirators of the 
Spanische faction, even the selfe same that yet stil you haue, to your 
eminent peril, conserued in ther estates. Was I not so muche douted 
as hit was thoght an Italian invention to make you holde me dearer, 
and contrived of malice, not don by cause ; and, in that respect, the 
poore man, that knewe no other of his taking but as if thiues had as- 
sailed him, he most cruelly soufert so giltles a marterdome as his tor- 
mentors douted his life ; so sore had he the bootes, whan the wer ivel- 
worthy life that bade hit. See what good incouragement I receved 
for many wacheful cares for your best safty ! Wel, did this so dis- 
comfort my good wyl as, for al this, did I not euer seme for your 
true espiall, iven whan you left your land and yours ready, wel-ny, 


to receaue suche foraine forsis as the required and wer promised ; 
wiche, if you had pleased to knowe, was and is to evident to be 
proved. But what of all this, if he who most aught, did naught to 
assure him, or to requite them ? 

Now, of late, by a fortunate good hap, a lewd felowe hathe bine ap- 
prehended with lettars and instructions. I pray God he be so wel 
handeled as he may confes all his knowlege in the Spanische conspi- 
racie, and that you use not this man as slightly as you don the ringe- 
leaders of this treason. I vowe, if you do not rake hit to the botome, 
you wyl verefie what many a wise man hathe (vewing your proci- 
dings) judged of your gilttines of your owne wrack ; with a wining, 
that the wyl you no harme in inabling you with so riche a protector, 
that wyl prove, in the ende, a destroiar. 

I haue beheld, of late, a strange, dishonorable, and dangerous par- 
don, wiche if hit be true, you haue not only neglected yourselfe but 
wronged me, that haue to muche procured your good to be so ivel- 
guerdoned with suche a wrong, as to haue a fre forgiuenes of aught 
conspired against my person and estat. Suppose you, my deare 
brother, that thes be not rather enseignes of an enemy than the tast 
of a frinde ? I require, therfor, to al this, a resolute answer, wiche 
I chalenge of right, that may be dides, bothe by spidy apprehension 
with bisy regard, and not in sort as publik rumor may precede 
present action, but rather that the be intrapped or the do looke ther- 
for ; for I may make deme you wold not haue [them] taken, and what 
wyl folowe than, you shal see whan lest you looke. Think me, I pray 
you, not ignorant what becometh a king to do, and that wyl I never 
omit ; praying you to trust Bowes in the rest as myselfe. I am 
ashamed that so disordard coursis makes my pen excide a lettar, and 
so drives me to molest your yees with my to long skribling, and 
therfor end, with my ernest prayers to God that he wyl inspire you 
to do, in best time, al for your best. 

Your loving affectionat sistar, 

[Addressed,] ELIZABETH R. 

For our deare brother the king of Scotland. 
[Indorsed, ] Deliuered be Mr. Bowes, ambassador, xxj. Januar. 1592. 




23RD MAY 1592. RYDER MSS. KLIZ. NO. 34. ORIG. 

Credentials for Robert Bowes returning to Scotland as the queen's 
resident ambassador. 

This letter has reference to letter XXXIX. Bowes appears to have been absent about 
five months. 

Right high right excellent and right mightie prince, our dearest 
brother and cousin, in our hardest manner we commend us unto you. 
Where we were contented, certain monthes paste, to license our ser- 
vant Robert Bowes, then our ambassadour resident with you, to 
come to his countrye for expeditinge of certaine his priuate affaires 
which could not be conueniently ordered but by his own presence ; 
and that, uppon signification thereof made to you by our letters, you 
were well contented therewith. Since whose comminge from thence 
we understand of many accidentes there happened to the troubling of 
your estate, and if wisdome and princely authority be not by you 
used to prevent perilles appearing, we have cause to doubt of greater 
danger to followe. Therefore, hauing care for your estate to con- 
tinew as peaceable as our owiie is, by Gods goodnes, and being 
desirous from tyme to tyme to heare of your direct proceadinges in 
overruling your disobedient subiectes, who are boldened, as we are 
well assured, by the faction and practises of such as are knowne 
sworne papists, both abroad and at home, and professed enemyes to 
the amitye betwixt vs and you and our countries, we doe therefore 
return our said seruant to reside with you as our ambassadour as 
heretofore he hath been, so as all former intelligences may continew 
betwixt you and us by his seruice there with you, both hoping and 
wishing, that now, in the intended parlement, which you, as we 
heare, have summoned, your nobillity and people that are most 
deuoted to your estate and to your honnour and person may fynde 
countenance and supportation, against others that shalbe found to 


contemne your authoritye, and to lyue vnruly, against God and your- 
selfe and to the diminution of your royall and princely estate and re- 
putation ; whereof we shall take most singular comfort, as knoweth 
the Almighty God ; who holde you in his protection. Gyuen under 
our signet, at our manor of Grenewich, the xxiij" 1 of May in the 
xxxiiij th yeare of our raign, 1592. 

Your most lovinge sistar and cousin, 
[Addressed,~\ ELIZABETH R. 

To the right high right mighty 
and right excellent prince, our 
dearest brother and cousen, the 
king of Scotlande. 

K. Scotland 1592, presented be Mr. Bowes, 3 Junij. 

No. XLIV. 



The queen vehemently urges James to punish those who disturb him 
with their reiterated traitorous attempts expresses her astonishment 
that he should submit to be " a clerk to such lessons," and strongly 
advises him never to pardon his factious rebels. 

The date given to this letter is added in the margin of our MS. It is not very clear 
that it is right, for the letter is one which might have been written at various periods of 
James's reign. During several months of the year 1592 the sovereign of Scotland was 
literally driven from place to place by the persevering, factious Both well; and, if the date 
assigned to this letter be correct, it is to that state of things that the indignant queen al- 
ludes. Whenever written, the letter is most characteristically Elizabethan. 

The deare care, my deare brother, that ever I carried, from your 
infancye, of your prosperous estate and quiet, could not permite here 
of so manye, yea so traiterous, attemptes, without unspeakeable do- 
lour and unexpressefull woe, of which to be [by] your owne messen- 


ger assertened, breeds my infinite thankes, with many a gratef'ull 
thoughte for so kynde a part. Too redouble crymes so oft, I say 
with your pardone, most to your charge, wich never durst have bene 
renewed if the first had receaved the condigne rewarde ; for slacking 
of due correction engenders the bolde mynds for newe crymes. And 
if my counseils had als well bene followed as they were truely meant, 
your subjects had nowe better knowen their king, and you no more 
neede of further justice. You finde by sowre experience what this 
neglect hath bredd you. 

I heare of so uncouth a way taken by some of your conventions, 
yea agreed to by your selfe, that I must [wonder] howe you will be 
clarke to suche lessons. Must a king be prescribed what counsayl- 
ours he shall take, as if you were there ward ? Shall you be obliged 
to tye or undoe what they lyst make or revoke ? O Lord, what 
strange dreames here I, that would God they were so, for then at 
my wacking I should find them fables. If you meane, therefore, to 
raigne, I exhorte you to shewe you worthy the please, wich never 
can be surely setled without a steadye course held to make you 
loved and feared. I assure myself many have escaped your hands 
more for dreade of your remissnes than for love of the escaped ; so 
ofte they see you cherishing some men for open crymes, and so they 
mistrust more their revenge than your assurance. My affection for 
your best lies on this, my playnesse ; whose patience is to much 
moved with these lyke everlasting faults. 

And since it so lykes you to demande my counsaile, I finde so 
many ways your state so unjoynted, that it needs a skilfuller bone- 
setter than I to joyne each part in his right place. But to fulfill 
your will, take, in shorte, theise few words : For all whoso you 
knowe the assaylers of your courts, the shamefull attempters of your 
sacred decree, if ever you pardon, I will never be the suter. Who 
to peril a king were inventores or actors, they should crake a halter 
if I were king. Such is my charitie. Who under pretence of bet- 
tering your estate, endangers the king, or needs wil be his schoole- 
masters, if I might appoint their universitie they should be assigns 1 


to learne first to obay ; so should they better teach you next I 
am not so unskylfull of a kinglye rule that I would wynke at noe 
faulte, yet would be open-eyed at publyke indignitie. Nether 
should all have the whippe though some were scourged. But if, 
lyke a toy, of a kinges liefe so oft indangered nought shall followe 
but a scorne, what sequele I may doubte of such contempt I dread 
to thinke and dare not name. The rest I bequeath to the trust of 
your faithfull sarvant, and pray the Almighty God to inspire you in 
time, afore to late, to cut their combes whose crest may danger 
you. I am void of malice, God is judge. I knowe them not For- 
give this to to long a writing. 

No. XLV. 



r rhe queen rejoices that the king has not been deceived by offers made by 
the Roman catholic earls the injury Spain has received from 
attempting the queen's guiltless wrack those who have designed to sell 
their country should never be trusted one of the confederates has 
offered to make a disclosure of their names and how the king might 
entrap them what would James have the queen do ? 

The date given to this letter is assigned to it in the Thompson MS. The general 
circumstances to which it relates are sufficiently obvious. Huntly and his friends, driven, 
from court by the universal indignation excited by their brutal murder of the bonny ear] 
of Murray, had been striving to make terms with James. The original of this letter is in 
the possession of Sir George Warrender. (Tytler's Scotland, ix. 423.) It was delivered 
to James by Bowes on the 4th December 1592. 

My deare brother, If the misfortune of the messengers had not 
protracted to long the receipt of my letters, I had sooner receaved the 
knowledge of such matter as would have had my sooner aunsweare to 
causes of suche importance ; but, at length, though long first, I per- 
ceave howe, to the privy snares of your seeming friends, you have so 


warely cast youre eyes, as that your mynd hathe not bene trapped 
with the false shewes of such a kindnesse, but have well remembred 
that proved cares and assured love ought of meere justice take the 
upper hand of begiling deceipts and colloured treasons. You forgett 
not, I perceave, howe you should have served once for pray to enter 
the hands of forreners rule, even by the intisement of liim that offers 
you that he cannot gett, wich if he should, [would] serve his trophe, 
not yours, whose land he seeks but to thrall bothe. 

It gladds me muche that you have more larger sight than they 
supposed that would have lymed you so. And, for my part, I ren- 
der my many thanks to yourselfe for your self, as she that scornes 
his malice, and envies not his intent. My enemye hathe never done 
himselfe more skare then to will my guiltless wrack, who ere now, 
himself knowes, hathe preserved hym his countryes who since hath 
sought myne. Such was his reward ! God ever shield you from so 
crooked a will as to hazard your owne in hope of gaininge anothers. 
You knowe right well there is a way to gett that doth preced the 
attempt. When he hath wonne the entry, you shall have least part 
of the victory, who seeks to make, as oft hath been, your subjects 
theirs. Suppose, I beseach you, how easely he will present you the 
best, and keep the worst for himself. This matter is so plaine it 
needes small advice. Preserve yourself in such state as you have. 
For others, beguile not yourselfe, that injuriously you may gett. 
There is more to doe in that, then wiles and wishes. Looke about 
with fixed eyes, and sure suche to you as seicke not more yours then 
you. Avance not suche as hang their hopes on other strings than 
you may tune. Them that gold can corrupt, think not your guiftes 
can assure. Who once have made shippwrack of their contrie 
let them not injoy it Weede out the weeds lest the best corne 
fester. Never arme with power suche whose betternes must follow 
after you, nor trust to their trust that under any cullour will thrall 
their owne soyle. 

I may not, nor will I, conceale overtures that of late have amply 
bene made me, how you may playnely knowe all the combyners 


against your state, and how you may intrapp them, and so assure 
your kingdome but to you, not permitting it a sport to strangers 
curtesye. One or more of their own companie is this actor, and 
therefore knows it best, in wiche he standeth to your honor. 
Whither, if this be so, he deserve suertie of lyef, not of land nor 
lyvelyhood, but suche as may preserve breath, to spend when best 
shall please you. My aunsweare was, when I see the way howe, I 
will impart it to whome it most appertaines. Now bethinke, my 
deare brother, what further you will have me do. In the meane 
while, beware to give the raygnes into the hands of any, lest it be 
to late to revoke such actions done. Let no one of the Spanishe 
faction in your absence, yea when you [are] neer present, receave 
strengthe or countenance. You knowe, but for you, all of them be 
alyke to me, for my particular, yet I may not denye but I abhorre 
such as sett their contry to sale. And thus, committing you to 
Gods tuition, I shall remain the faithfull holder of my vowed amytie 
without spott or wrinkle. 

Your affectionat sister, 


No. XLVI. 



Letter of credence for the lord Borough sent on special embassy to the 

king of Scots. 

The person to whose mission the following letter relates was Thomas lord Borough, who 
was afterwards successively governor of the Brill and lieutenant of Ireland. It was 
the object of his embassy to Scotland to give an answer to James respecting lord Bothwell, 
whom the Scottish sovereign accused Elizabeth of harbouring in England, and to incite the 
king against the Spanish conspirators. James was outwardly pursuing them with great 
severity ; but it was universally believed that it was his real intention to screen them from 
adequate punishment. 


Right high right excellent and mighty prince, our deerest brother 
and cousin; Whereas we haue at this present sent unto you in 
speciall ambassade tliis noble man, our right trusty and right welbe- 
louid the lord Burgh, with charge of certain matteres to be delt in 
and communicated unto you from us, we earnestly pray you, that, as 
the same be of no small importance, and concerne the weale of both us 
and our realmes, so you will accordingly consider of them as pro- 
ceeding from a princesse who having alwayes heertofore tendred your 
state, and bene desyrous of all good and prosperous succes in your 
affaires and gouuernement, doth still retayne the same ernest affec- 
tion and care towardes you ; and so we doubte not but in your owne 
good jugement you rest perswaded. Prayeng you, that in such 
thinges as the said lord Burgh shall imparte unto you in our name, 
you will give him full credit. Thus, we beseech Allmighty God, 
right high right excellent and mighty prince, our deerest cousin and 
brother, to assist and protecte you with his holy fauour in all your 
good actiones. Written at Westminster the tweluith of February 

Your most affectionate sistar and cousin, 

To the right high right 

excellent and mighty prince, 

our good brother and cousin, 

the king of Scotland. 

Deliuered by the lord Borrough the xvj. of Marche 1593. 




The queen returns a million of thanks to James for his answer sent to 
that wicked traitor Westmerland she hears that some nobleman has 
been accused of a design against James's life, and entreats him not to 
make small regard of such a crime. 

Charles Neville, the sixth and last Neville earl of Westmerland, to whom the following 
letter relates, dragged out a miserable life as an exile for 30 years after the discomfiture of 
his rebellion in 1569. He several times endeavoured to procure James to interest himself 
with Elizabeth on his behalf, but it was no part of her character to overlook such offences 
as his. The latter part of the letter probably relates to the incident mentioned in the fol- 
lowing passage in Calderwood's History of the Kirk of Scotland, v. 250, Wodrow edition : 
" Upon Wednisday, the second of May, Clunie Crichtoun was apprehended, and sharply 
examined before the king and counseill, for intentioun to have taken the king by the horse 
brydle, and to convoy him to Both well." 

No sample bettar triar of truthe, my deare beloued brother, than 
whan dides dothe give a right sequel to wordes precedant, the report 
of wiche profe sins your actions make me, iven in the last just 
handeling of that wicked traitor Westmerland, whom many benefitz 
of life and lande, besides all other kind and louinge traictmentz, 
could neuer let but he wold nides make his name the first traitor that 
euer my raigne had ; to whom, nether cause, nor iniury, nor pouerty, 
nor il vsage, gaue euer shadowe of mene to moue suche a thoght, but 
wer hit not that he liueth by my meanes (whom many wold, for the 
horror of his fact, or now haue dispached), securus propter contemptum 9 
els hit had not bine possible for him to haue liued to this howre ; but 
I dout not but your answer to his treasonable lettar wyl make him, 
and suche like, knowe that you not only hate the treason, but do owe 
as muche to the traitor ; and, I assure you, I wil neuer suffer that 
this fact of yours shal retourne void, but wil euer recompence you 
withe the like, with my million of thankes for suche kinglike part 

And, now, I heare that some nobleman hath bine accused of so 



horrible a crime as my hart rues to remember. For Goclz loue, look 
throw no spectacles to your owne safety. Your yees be younge, you 
iiideth not haue a clere sight in your so nye a cause, and let your 
counseil see that you wyl not easely be begiled in making to smal 
regard of that wiche toucheth life yea, of a king ! For overgreat 
audacitie wyl brede, to a mynde that may be sone perswaded that all 
is wel, to do the boldlar a wicked act. Hard is the skul that may 
serue in place of suche a danger, nay hit may bride hit to neglect 
hit. You haue had many treasons wiche to tendarly you haue 
wrapt vp. I pray God the cindars of suche a fire bride not one day 
your ruine. God is witnes I malice none, but for your seurty is 
only the care of my writing. I desiar no bloude, but God saue 
yours. Only this my long experience teacheth me ; whan a king 
neglectes himself, who wyl make them enemis for him ? Let this 
serve you for a caveat. You wil beare with the fault that affection 
commiteth, and use the profit to your best good. For wiche I wyl 
euer pray to God, who long defend you from al treachery. 

Your most assured loving sistar and cousin, 


While Bodewel is in this case, give ordar, I beseche you, that the 
ordars so wel begone may be perfourmed, and so continued, and that no 
man haue rule ther that taketh not to hart the quiet of bothe realrnes. 


To my deare brother the 
king of Skotz. 
Delyuered be Roger Aston xiiij. May 1593. 





The queen, having discussed the condition of Scotland with Jameses 
ambassador, the bearer of this letter, has sent her advice fully by him 
an example must be made to insure the safety of the better part 
Bothwell shall receive what he deserves the queen lias sent a small 
sum of money by the bearer. 

"On the 7th of June," says Calderwood (vol. v. p. 252), "sir Robert Melvill went in 
ambassage to the queen of England, with an answer in writt to the last ambassador's 
articles, and to receave the king's annuitie; to crave Bothwell to be delivered, and aide 
to persue the rebells," that is, the Roman catholic earls. The following answer was sent 
by Elizabeth to James on sir Robert Melvill's return. 

My deere brother, That my many preventions and your often 
warnynge have not served so fair fourth your towrne as my care 
and your neede would have requyred, I cannot but regreat, and you 
may make a patrone wherby such mischieves may hereafter be croste 
afore they creape to ripenes, for at the furst they are sooner shonned 
than after cured. 

I yelde you many thanks for the dy verse parts of naturall kynd- 
nes that by this gentleman I have understoode, and dare assure you, 
that no parte thereof shall fall to the ground without his just acqui- 
tall. At large I have discoursed for your estate, and have thereof 
adjoyned my advice and counsell, ever the very like as yf myne 
owen case that touched, without malice, voide of deceite, and clere 
from any faction, but only adheringe to your safetie, which being 
preserved, I have obtained the scope of my designes. A long roted 
malady, falling to many relapses, argues, by reason, that the body is 
so corrupt that yt may be patched but never sound. When great 
infections light on many yt almost poisoneth the whole countrey. 
Yt were better, therfore, that the greater parte were kept solide 
though some infected perish. Preserve the better part, and let ax- 
ample fear the follower. The paraphrase of this text yt may please 


yow here this gentleman to make, and after hearing, if this lecture 
please, yow could behold as in a glass the inside of my inward harte 
unto you, and there yow should view no hate to any, no bloody de- 
syre, no revengeful mynd, but all fraught with thought how safely 
to preserve yow from domestick and foraine guiles ; and should per- 
ceive no drifte for others raignes or rule but yours alone, to whom I 
wish all yours so bound as for no ambition they danger or perturbe 
you, nor for private malice or singular affection they bend to band 
for Scotlands baine. Let no man murmurre at your favours em- 
ployed as best you like. Your servants, let them voide first that so 
place away their duties. They should dislodge that so would rule. 
Yf a king will endure, he shall have indignities enough, but rarely 
will they venture ther losse yf they hooped not to boldly. You see 
how farr the trust you repose in me hath transported me, and made 
me over lavish in bablinge my conceils. I hope the cover of good 
will will quite me of oultrecuidance. 

As for Bodwell, I besech yow way well what this bearer can 
justly tell yow of me herein. I suppose his owne conscience will 
never accuse me of any over greate partiality that way. He hath seen 
to much to beleve yt. Yf my mynde have, more for their particular 
than my charge, forgotten what they should, they shall receave 
what they deserve, but yeld yow me my right, or els you should 
wronge your self to iniure me. 

The small token you shall receave from me I desire yt may serve 
to make you remember the tyme and my many weighty affaires, 
wich makes yt les than else I would, and I dowt nothing but when 
you heare all, yow will beare with this. And thus havinge to longe 
molested your eyes with my scrattinge, I bequeath yow to the safe 
protection of the Almighty, who longe and many yeres graunt you 
to live, with my best loving recommendations. 


No. XL1X. 



The queen expresses her amazement at James's being reconciled to a 
person whom he had professed that his heart abhorred he should 
make his subjects know his power, and not allow them to tell him what 
he ought, nor dare to presume upon what they may. 

This letter refers to one of those sudden coups d'etat by which the government of Scotland 
so frequently changed hands. James was not only unwilling to punish the Roman catho- 
lic earls, he was clearly friendly to them and their party, in spite of their obvious treason. 
This fact was so extraordinary, that the people could only account for it by supposing that 
the king had some secret intention to proclaim himself a convert to Roman Catholicism. 
The mere suspicion of such a thing gave power to Both well, who, with all his faults, was a 
protestant, and therefore popular. Assisted by his friends at court, Bothwell was enabled 
on the 24th July, 1593, to enter the palace unperceived, and make himself master of the 
royal person. Whilst in the power of the Bothwell party, James promised many things 
which he never dreamt of performing. These were the promises at which Elizabeth in the 
following letter professes her amazement. 

My deare brother, I doute so muche that 1 wot not wither I dreame, 
slombar, or heare amis, whan newes was broght that the wer in your 
bosome whom I haue hard from yourselfe your hart aborred. I 
thought [it] so strange, that I did suppose the lenghs of miles betwixts 
vs might make way to untru leasings inough, and skars could afourd 
my belife the graunt to trust hit. But, after a few days, perceauing 
that suche blastz wer verefied by your hand-writ, with an addition of 
the fact pardoned, and al attoned : than, what I thoght I leaue you to 
ges, after the rule that my ever care for your best deserues other ac- 
cidentz in sequele. What the wer, and how I could allowe, I refer 
to your iugement, according [to] the mesure of tru kingly ordar ; 
but this, in somme, take at my hand, as greatest pawne of my sincerite. 
If you wyl, thogh you haue not, or had, as you did not, kingly and 
resolutly, make your unsound subiectz knowe your power, and not 
to overslip suche as by strangers helpe may danger you and yours, 
nether shuld your subiectz nede tel you what you aught, nor the 
dare to muche presume of what the may. I have delated to my em- 


bassador sufficiently this, with more, to whom I pray you giue firme 
credit, as to myselfe. The long profe that his faithe hathe made you, 
may cause you trust him, without any addition. And wyl coinit 
you to Godz tuition, who saue you euer from seaming true. 

Your most affectionat sistar and cousin, 

To our good brother the king of Scotts. 


Deliuered at Sterveling be Mr. Bowes, 
September 1593. 

No. L. 



Thanks for kind treatment of ambassador, for payment of annuity, for 
offer of ships to repress rebels in the western isles, and for promise 
never to hurt James's title explanation of James's conduct towards 
Hie Roman catholic earls of the escape of two of the prisoners from 
custody of the treatment of Bothwell of a proposed agreement 
between him and Huntly and of the king's choice of councillors. 

The following letter was written in reply to the last communication of Elizabeth, and 
bears date on the very day when that last communication reached James's hand. It con- 
tains a plain statement of what James wished to be believed respecting his position, and of 
the circumstances upon which he himself relied, in defence of his conduct both towards 
the Roman catholic party and towards Bothwell. It is one of the clearest and least pedan- 
tic of the known letters of the Scottish sovereign, and will be found to be of great historical 
value as illustrating the important events which agitated Scotland during the eventful 
years 1592 and 1593. 

Madame and dearest sister, It uas no negligent unthankefulnes 
that maid me, euer since my lait ambassadouris returne, keip silence 


towardis you quhill nou, but only because that never quhill nou, I 
coulde, both witli honour and suirtie, advertishe you of the treuth 
of my estait since the falling out of this lait accident heir. I cannot 
eneuch thanke you of youre so kyndlie accepting of my late ambas- 
sadoure, and for the loving and friendlie dispatche ye gaue him, 
especiallie for that prive and most familiare dealing ye hadd with 
him, euen without the priuitie of any of your owin counsall, but, 
most of all, for your honorable promeis neuer to hurt my title not- 
withstanding of the main assaulties geuin you thairin. I also thanke 
you for that ayde ye haue sent me of the annuitie, quhairin I con- 
sider the great charges ye are presentlie at, and doubtis not but 
quhen it shall please Godd to lessen thame, ye will be myndfull of 
your promeis in that matter. I am also obleist unto you for your 
promeis to assiste me with tuo schipps, quhensoeuer I shall take 
occasion to prosecute the rebellis of the yles, quho are also assistains 
of your rebellis in Yreland. 

Nou, madame, as to the estaite of my effaires heir. I ressauid late- 
lie a letter of youris, togither with sum doubtis deliuerid by your 
ambassadoure, quhairin ye desyre to be fullie satisfeid, quhairunto, 
for escheuing of tedious long summes, I ansoure summarillie, and 
to the substance, thoch not point by point as it is proponid. And, 
first, concerning the papist rebellis. According to my promeis made 
to the lorde Burghe, I was fulley resolued to haue procedit to thaire 
forfaltoure at the last parliament, if tuo lettis hadd not interueind ; 
the one, that, taking the aduocatis oathe, quhither he thocht ue hadd 
sufficient lau for us, or not, to proceid against thame, ue found 
plainlie oure lau uolde not permitt it, quhairin if oure aduocate* 
hadd bene a flatterair, he had betrayed the cause, if that maitter, 
being putt to jugement, had gone against us, as suirlie it uolde haue 
done ; the other was, the sayde rebellis hadd so trauelled by indirect 
meanes with euerie nobleman, as, quhen I felt thair myndis, first 

* " Mr. David Makgill, the king's advocate, a man of extraordinary talent." (Tytler's 
Scotland, ix. 100.) 


apairt and then being conueind together, thay plainlie, and all in one 
uoyce, refusid to yeild to any forfaltoure, quhairupon I uas forcit to 
continue that maitter to the next parliament, and thay to remane re- 
laxit in the meane tyine, otheruayes thair summoundes behouit to 
haue deserted. And, althoch thair relaxation gaue full libertie to 
euerie man to intercommun and ressett thaime, yett thay neuer 
kythit thamselfis publictlie in any place, quhill this kit accident of 
Bothuellis surprysing of my person, and now of lait thay incessantlie 
make petitions unto me, not only offering but crauing a trayall, pro- 
meising faithfullie, humblie to confess quhateuer thay haue comitted, 
but denying the cheif point, quhiche they remitt to tryell, and offer- 
ing to giue quhat suirtie I please to deuyse, for goode ordoure in 
tymes cummyng, not only for this cuntrie but lykeuayes concerning 
your part, and the quhole yle. As for me, I haue euer yett refuisde 
to heare of thame, quhill first ye uaire maid acquainted thairuith, not 
onlie because that maitter concernis you als well as me, but also be- 
cause of your secreate and freindlie message with sir Robert,* that if 
I coulde not finde the meanis presentlie hou to pursue thaime with 
rigoure, ye wolde then, for the respect ye hadd to my uell and saue- 
tie, deale and giue youre aduyce, quhat conditions of suretie micht be 
takin of thaime thairfor. Madame, since I cast still a deafe eare to 
all thaire offers quhill I heare youre ansoure, I pray you hasten it 
als spedilie touardis me as goodlie ye may, and make me obleist in 
giuing me that aduyce quhiche ye haue obleist me in making so 
kindlie ane offer of allreaddie. 

And as to maister George Herris escaype, or Angusis ather, if 
thay hadd bene in the toure of London, and hadd als false knaves to 
thair keiparis, (quhom thay bribbit and maid to flee with thaime,) 
thay hadd playid the lyke, for since that tyme souir experience hath 
taucht to my self that the thickness of no wallis can hold out treason. 

And as for Bothuellis cumming about me, I cannot suirlie uonder 
eneuch that ye, being so wyse a prince, and of so great intelligence, 

* Sir Robert Melvill, the ambassador before alluded to. 


should have bene so euill and uncertainlie aduertishit thairof, for, as 
Bothucllis first in-cumming uas uiolent and alltogether without my 
preuitie or consent, so was his behauiour thairefter uiolent and irre- 
uerent, not respecting nor remembring in the end quhat he promeisid 
at the beginning, gairding me as I hadd bene his laufull prisoner, 
and aprehending dyuers of my most speciall domestike seruantis, 
quhose custodie he comittid to the greatest of the bordure theuis, 
quhill at last I was forcit, not onlie for my ouin safetie, but also for the 
safetie of my quhole cuntrey in me, for the quhich I ame borne more 
then for my self, to graunt him almost quhateuer he required. And 
now of laite, since I came out of his handis, after conueining of my 
estaitis, althoch I coulde not by any law or reason be obleist to ob- 
serve that quhich at so unlauchfull a tyme I had promeised, yett, 
partlie for that I uolde not incurr the shlander of the breaking of, it 
waire, but the shaddou of a promeis, and pairtlie at the humble suite 
of the saidis estaitis for quyeting of the cuntrey, that thair-throuch 
justice micht be aquallie ministrat hearafter upon all other enormi- 
ties, I uas content to graunt him in substance, thoche in a more 
honorable forme, that quhiche of lait he hadd unlauchfully purchest 
of me. These uaire the causes, madame, of my pardoning him, 
and not any change of my opinion touardis him, quhom indeid, in 
most thingis, I persaue to be the same man he uont to be. If he 
behaue himself well hearafter, the better will it be for him ; if other- 
wayes, ye and all the cristen princes in the world shall be uitnessis 
of my pairt. 

And quhairas ye uas informed that he and his complices hadd 
crauid of me the prosequting of the papistis, alledging that for ane 
excuse of thaire irruerend behauioure. Upon my honoure, it was 
neither intendit nor alledgit ; nor no other cause, but the bair seeking 
of his own releif and securitie. And by the contrarie, all his com- 
plices haue, euer sen his incumming, delt with me for agreing him 
and Huntlie, with promeis of conformitie on Bothuellis pairt, and 
Coluill has offerid himself to be the doare of it unto me, and uithin 
foure days before the wryting of this, Bothuell sent directlie to 



Huntlie to craue speaking of him quyetlie. Quhatt I uritt in 
this I uritt not upon reportis but upon certaintie, and as I ame 

And as for the choice of my councellouris, I intended to make no 
other choice but of those same quhose names I sent to you, for I 
trust ye shall uith tyme knou I have not bene chaingabill to my 
seruaunts, suppose so many of them haue chaingid upon me. And 
thus, thanking you hairtelie for the honorable disallouing of the dis- 
turbairs of my estait, and for youre motherlie caire in all my 
adoes, I committ you, madame and dearest sister, to Goddis most 
holy protection. From my pallis of Falklande, the xix. of Sep- 
tember, 1593. 

Your most loving and affectionat brother and cousin, 


No. LI. 



Astonishment at the variableness of James's conduct, and that he should 
be guided in the treatment of the catholic earls by one lewd advocate 
strenuous arguments to induce him to proceed with severity against 
them counsel also respecting the treatment of Bothwell and Jameses 
general conduct, especially in reference to offers of foreign aid. 

This letter is Elizabeth's reply to James's letter of the 19th September. Her comments 
upon the advice of the advocate seem founded upon the mistaken supposition that he was a 
hired pleader for the Roman catholic earls; but even the mistake is valuable, as calling forth 
the expression of an indignation very characteristic of the writer. In the after part of the let- 
ter, her majesty, in her rough, vigorous way, completely strips James of the plausible defence 
which he had put forth for his treacherous leniency to the enemies of protestantism. 

My deare brother, If the variablenis of Skottis affayres had not 
invred me with to olde a custom, I shuld neuer leue wondring at 
suche strange and vncought actions, but I haue so oft with careful 
yees foresine the ivel-comming harmes, and with my watche for-met 


with chifest attemptz, and see them ether not belived or not redrest, 
that I wex faint vndar suche burdain, and wery of fruictles labour. 
One while, I receue a wright* of obliuion and forgiuenes, than a revo- 
cation, with new additions of latelar consideration ; sometimes, some 
you cal traitors with proclame, and anone, ther must be no profe al- 
lowed, thogh neuer so apparent, against them. Yea, if one lewd ad- 
uocat, perchance hired for the nonest, dar pronounce a sentence for 
them, thogh one of like state denye the same, his word must not take 
place. Hit semes a paradoxe to me, that, if of two plaidars one be 
for the king, the equal number shal not serue for a king. I muse 
how any so lewd a man hathe bine chosen for suche a place, as durst 
come in open vew to pleade against his mastar. Ther office is, as to 
do right so do the soueraine no wronge. If he had douted, as no 
honest man could, he ought bine absent rather than ther to play so 
vnfitting a part, thogh secretly he had told hit you. He is happy he 
is no Englis man. You shuld haue hard other newes of him than. 

Old Meluin,f I perceaue, hathe told you a pece of a tale and left out 
the principal. My wordes wer thes : " I heare say the offending lordz 
hopes by ther frindz to skape ther paine ; I suppose your king to wise 
to be so unmindful of his peril to suffar vnprosecuted suche as wold 
tral ther country to strangers curtesy, hauing knowen hit so plain 
and so long, for this is not ther first offence. But if his powre 
serued not to apprehend, yet to condempne I douted not, for if euer 
he wold pardon them, wiche I could hardly counseil, yet I could not 
thinke without some obligation to some other prince, that, for ther re- 
quest, he wold do hit." 

Now to this great cause that toucheth us bothe so muche. First, 
considar of what profession the be ; next, to whom the haue made 
vowe for religion, the wiche I call Christian treason, under what cloke 
so neuer. I haue oft told you I was neuer horsleche for bloude, but 
rather than your ouer-trust shuld peril the creditor, I wold wische 
them ther worst desart. Than how to credit that so oft hathe de- 
ceued ? My braines be to shalow to fadom that botome. How hardly 

* writ. f Sir Robert Melvill. 


remedies be aplied to helpe inveteratid maladies ! I haue small skil 
of suche surgery. In fine, I see nether jugement, counseil, nor sure 
affection in so betrayinge advis as to giue your selfe suche a lasche 
that the shal be bothe vncondemned and saued. What thanke may 
the giue your marcy whan no crime is tried ? What bond shal tye 
ther profert loyalty if no precedent offencis past be acknoweleged by 
confession ? Shal the leue to adhere to that party wiche the neuer 
made ? Or what othe shal be sure to suche as ther profession skars 
thinkes lawful for a trust ? I vowe to the liuinge Lord, that no ma- 
lice to any, nor turbulent spirit, but your tru seurty and realmes 
fredom, inforseth my so plain discours, wiche cannot omit that ther 
be left so great a blot to your honor as the receuing them uncon- 
demned to your grace. 

And for Bodwel, Jesus ! did euer any muse more than I, that you 
could so quietly put up so temerous, indigne, a fact, and yet by your 
hand receving assurance that all was pardoned and finisched. I refer 
me to my owne lettar what dome I gaue therof. And now to heare 
al reuoked, and ether skanted or denied, and the wheele to turne to 
as il a spouke. I can say, bad is the best, but yet of iuelz the lest is 
[to] be taken. And if I wer in your place, I wold, or he departed, 
make him try himself no sutar for ther fauor whos persons let him 
persecute, so shal you best knowe him, for ther be liars if depely the 
have not sought him or now. 

But that I way most is the smal regard that your sure party may 
make [of] you, whan the see you adhere to your owne foes, habandon- 
ing the others seruise. I feare me the fame blowes to fur that you wyl 
not pursue the side of wiche you be, what so your wordes do sound. 
And this conceat may brede, if not already, more unsound hartz than 
al the paching of thes bad matters can worke you pleasure. You ar 
supposed (I must be plain, for dissemble I wyl not,) to haue receued 
this heretical opinion, that foreign forse shal strengthen you, not in- 
danger you, and that al thes lordes seake your greatnes not your 
decay. O, how wicked sirenes songes ! wiche, in first shewe, pleas ; 
in ende, ruines and destroies. Wax ynough of Godz raison befal 


you to resist so distroing aduis, and be so wel lightned as not so 
dark a clowde may dim you from the sight of your best good, wiche 
cannot be more shunned than by the not yelding to so betrainge 
deceat ; from the wiche I wil incessantly pray for your deliuerance. 
Wiscliing you many days of raigne, and long. 

Your most assured sistar, 

To my good brother the king of Scotland. 


Sent to me to be pnted to his ma tie at 
Thirlestane xix. Octob. 1593. 

No. LII. 



Special letter of credence for Bowes, the queen* s ambassador, slie being 
hindered from writing herself. 

The nature of Bowes's special message to which the following letter relates may be in- 
ferred from the allusions to it in the next letter from James. 

Right high right excellent and mighty prince, our deerest brother 
and cousin, Whereas we have at this present written at good length 
to our servant Robert Bowes, our ambassadour resident with you, of 
some important materes meet for you to haue knowledge of, which 
ourselfe wolde by our own hand-wryting haue imparted unto you, 
rather then otherwise, if at this instant other waighty occasiones wold 
have given me leasure, we have therefore thought good hereby to 
mak this request unto you, that ye will heare and give credence to 
our said ambassadour as much as if we had with our own hand written 
unto you, in such materes as we haue at this tyme given him charge 


to open and communicate unto you; which we doubte not but ye will 
please readily doo, both in respect of his honesty and good dealing 
well knowen vnto you, and whereof we assure ourself ye are well 
persuaded, and of this our request also, thus at this tyme made unto 
you. And so, right high right excellent and mighty prince, our 
dearest brother and cousin, we desire Allmighty God euer to haue 
you in his holy protection. Given at our castle of Windsor, the 
xxix th of October 1593, in the xxxv th yeare of our raigne. 

Your most affectionat sistar and cousin, 


Deare brother, Let this credit, I beseeche you, be so far belieued as 
whos answer may continue or breake our frindship. Thinke not 
wordes without effectz shall deceiue me. For your own best hit is 
that I demande, whoso shal otherwise thinke wyl bigile you. 


To the right high right excellent and mighty 
prince, our deerest brother and cousin, the 
king of Scotland. 


Deliuered be Mr. Bowes viij Nouember 1593. 
Ed r . [probably Edinburgh.] 




James replies to Elizabeths Utters Nos. LI. and LI1. the earls 
have acknowledged certain offences, but all deny that the Spanish 
blanks had the meaning attributed to them the estates of Scotland 
having been convened to consider the question had come to certain de- 
terminations which are submitted to the queen for her consideration and 
advice in reference to that part of her last letter which related to a 
border fracas, James has directed the principal offender to be delivered 
to her warden. 

James's lenient policy towards the catholic earls had now gone the length of procuring 
an arrangement by which they were to be pronounced free of the accusations brought 
against them respecting the Spanish blanks, provided they would renounce Roman 
Catholicism and submit to the kirk. If they refused to profess themselves converts to pres- 
byterianism, their estates and honours were to be forfeited, and they themselves were to be 
driven into exile. In the following letter, James announces this determination to Elizabeth. 
After her expressed opinions, there could be no doubt that such an arrangement would be ex- 
tremely offensive to her. One is curious therefore to see in what way the subject is presented 
to her by the plausible Scottish sovereign . No one will deny that he got through his task skil- 
fully. Mr. Tytler, without having seen this letter, which is now published for the first time, 
printed Elizabeth's answer to it from the original in the possession of sir George Warrender. 
(Hist. Scotland, ix. 141.) It is a remonstrance written in her boldest and most scornful 
manner. As it was the subject of a good deal of comment in subsequent letters, it shall 
be added, as printed by Mr. Tytler, in a note. 

Madame and dearest sister, since youre ressait of my last letter I 
have receaiut tuo from you ; one of your owne hand, another with 
a postscript onlie of your hande ; * .the former being an ansoure to 
my last, the other, a letter of creditt to youre ambassadour. 

As to the letter of your owin hande, it containis, specially, ane 
aduyce concerning yone three noblemen f dilaitid and suspected of 

* This refers to letter No. LII. " Your most affectionate sister and cousin, ELIZA- 
BETH R," with all that follows, is in the queen's handwriting. 
+ The earls of Huntly, Errol, and Angus. 


practising with Spaine ; and suirlie, madame, I cannot denye but 
youre counsall in that maitter is most wyse and honorable, and if I 
be richt rememberid, containis tuo speciall pointis ; the one, that if 
they should ressaue any fauoure or benefit, thair confession of a faulte 
in sum sorte most preceide, otherwayes it can naither be sure nor 
honorable for me to bestou any benefit upon thaim ; the other is, 
that suche a sure and substantiouse ordowre shoulde be takin with 
thaime, in kaice they should receaue any benefit, that not only I 
micht see a suretie for the estait and religion in this countrey, by 
thaire leauing and renouncing thair former profession and auouid 
seruice, but, also, that all other forraine princes professing this 
religion micht see a suretie for thaimselfis and thaire estaitis by 
thaire deutyftill bahauioure in all tymes cumming. Now, madame, 
I trust, if ye will consider quhat I haue done and ame to follou forth 
in this turne, ye shall finde it als conformable to your counsall as the 
state of this cace can permitt, for thay long since haue confessed tuo 
faultis. First, thay confesse all three hearing messe and ressaitt of 
jesuitts and seminarie preistis ; next, two of thaime, to witt, Angus 
and Erroll, confessed thair blankis to haue bene directed to sundrie 
forraine princes for crauing payment of suche debtis as thay alledge 
to haue advancit to sundrie of the jesuitis that uaire into this cuntrey 
and are gone bake againe, namelie, maister Williame Creichton, and 
that, sen thay are into thair dominions, they may make thayme to 
paye according to their promeis and deu debt I speake of thaise 
tuo lordis only, in this point, because Huntlie constantlie denyis to 
haue hadd any practising or dealing with any forrain nation since the 
bridge of Die ; * for, allthoch, as he sayes, he subscryuid thais blankis, 
yett nather waire thay directid to any suche end, as he alledgis, nor 
yett was any other subscription at thaim quhen he subscryued 
thaime, but that he ordained thaime to be directed to his oncle 
maister James f his superioures, to testifie that his said oncle ualde 
be compellid to depairt out of this cuntrey sooner than thay hadd 

* A rebellious assembly at that spot in April 1589. 
f James Gordon, a busy Scottish Jesuit. 


directid him to do, for fear of the straitness of my lauis, and that the 
minesteris hadd maide him so odious as he durst remaine no longer, 
and lykewayes recomending to them his said oncles pouertie, and 
hou he hadd bene at so great expensis heir ; and sayes, that he hes 
his oncles bakebande to shau, subscribed before honest witnessis of 
barronis, that these blankis shoulde be employed to no other use ; in 
the breake quhairof, he sayes, he was foullie abusid. But as to 
their practising for bring in of Spanyardis, ather in this cuntrey or 
in yours, that is the point quhiche thay all three utterlie deny, and 
for the quhiche thay offer thaimselfis to all kynde of tryall, so, as 
for that part of your counsall, thay offer to satisfie so fair furth as 
this thaire confession may auyle. 

The doubt, then, resting onlie upon their not confessing of the great 
cryme, I assemblit my estaitis to deliberat upon the suretie of the 
estait and religion, quhiche being at length reasoned upon, it was 
founde perrelouse to graunt thaim a tryall, in respect of thaire so 
constant denying, and that the last parliament uent so neir the 
clearing of thaim if it hadd bene putt to thaire votis, and thairfore, 
[I conformed] uento the next pairt of your counsall, to see a suretie for 
the estait and religion in tymes cumming, als uel by laying great and 
sure bondis upon thaime, as the acte bearis, as lykeuayes, dyuers strait 
conditiones, as, namelie, in kaice thay uiolat hearafter the least point 
that by that acte is inioined unto them, in that cace the penaltie of 
treason, and of that great cryme that they uaire delaitid of, shall 
with all rigoure be executed upon thaim ; and in kaice thay accept 
and observe the said acte, this great cryme and memorye thairof 
to be abolishit, because of the uncertaintie and perrell to trye the 
same. And thus are both the pairtis of your counsall, als farre as 
the nature of that cace will permitt, in my opinion follouid. 

For thaire acceptance of this acte, they haue to aduyse thaimselfis 
betuixt [the present time] and the first of Januare, and quhill then, it 
remainis as actum non actum, and having no strenth to work, and thair- 
fore haue I dispatchit this present unto you, that, before the said day, I 
may haue, als well your aduyce in this, quhiche is thocht meitest to be 



done for the suirtie of my estait, as also quhat suirtie ye wolde haue 
prouydit for the pairt of you and your cuntrey, quhairin ye may 
assure youreself I shall be als cairfull as for myself; praying you 
not thinke that quhat I writt in this turne of thaire confession, I do 
it as a thing that I will affirme to be certaine, but onlie as they 
geue it out, and quhairof I am not able to proue the contraire by a lau. 
And as to the contends of your last letter of creditt, I haue harde 
the creditt, containing tuo points ; the one this same purpose quhairof 
I haue bene wryting, the other concerning yone lait attemptat of 
Iddisdaille ; for the further satisfaction quhairof to both oure honouris, 
because the attemptat was so haynouse, I haue causit deliuer to 
youre uarden the principall offender himself, called Will Eliot, 
Thus, fearing to offend you with too long a letter, in ueareing you 
reid the same, and committing all other particularis to youre ambassa- 
douris letteris, I committ you, madame and dearest sister, to the pro- 
tection of the Allmichtie. From my palleis of Holyrudd house, the 
vii. of December 1593. 

Your most louing and affectionatt brother and cousin, 


I must once againe pray you, madame, to haisten youre ansoure 
before the first of Januarie, for the causis aboue specifeit, and, in the 
mene tyme, not to trust any false reportis, but to thinke of me in the 
olde manner, as I shall euer deserue at your hands.* 

* The queen's answer is printed by Mr. Tytler as follows : " My dear brother, To see 
so much, I rue my sight, that views the evident spectacle of a seduced king, abusing coun- 
cil, and wry-guided kingdom. My love to your good and hate of your ruin, breeds my 
heedful regard of your surest safety. If I neglected you, I could wink at your worst; and 
yet withstand my enemies' drifts. But be you persuaded by sisters[?]. I will advise you, 
void of all guile, and will not stick to tell you, that if you tread the path you chuse, I will 
pray for you, but leave you to your harms. 

" I doubt whether shame or sorrow have had the upper hand when I read your last lines 
to me. Who, of judgment that deemed me not simple, could suppose that any answers you 
have writ me should satisfy, nay, enter into the opinion of any one not void of four senses, 
leaving out the first. 




Astonishment of James at the support given to his avowed traitor in 
England strong appeal to the queen on the subject dissatisfaction 
with lord Zouche's conduct on his embassy has sent an answer by 
his own messengers. 

In April 1594, in the midst of the troubles respecting the Roman catholic earls, the rest- 
less and unscrupulous Bothwell made another attempt to regain his authority. Having 

" Those of whom you have had so evident proof by their actual rebellion in the field, you 
preserve, whose offers you knew then so large to foreign princes. And now, at last, when, 
plainest of all, was taken the carrier himself, confessing all before many commissioners 
and divers councellors; because you slacked the time till he was escaped, and now must 
seem deny it (though all men knew it,) therefore, forsooth, no jury can be found for them. 
May this blind me, that knows what a king's office were to do ? Abuse not yourself so 
far. Indeed, when a weak bowing and a slack seat in government shall appear, then bold 
spirits will stir the stern, and guide the ship to greatest wreck, and will take heart to 
supply the failure. 

" Assure yourself no greater peril can ever befal you, nor any king else, than to take for 
payment evil accounts; for they deride such, and make their prey of their neglect. 
There is no prince alive, but if he show fear or yielding, but he shall have tutors enough, 
though he be out of minority. And when I remember what sore punishment those so lewd 
traitors should have, then I read again, lest at first I mistook your mind ; but when the 
reviewing granted my lecture true, Lord ! what wonder grew in me, that you should cor- 
rect them with benefits, who deserve much severer correction. Could you please them 
more than save their lives and make them shun the place they hate, where they are sure 
that their just deserved haters dwell, and yet as much enjoy their honours and livelihoods 
as if for sporting travel they were licensed to visit other countries ? Call you this a banishment 
to be rid of whom they fear, and go to such they love ? Now, when my eyes read more, 
then smiled I to see how childish, foolish, and witless an excuse the best of either three 
made you, turning their treasons' bills to artificers' reckonings with items for many ex- 
penses, and lacked but one billet which they best deserved, an item for so much for the 
cord whose office they best merited. Is it possible that you can swallow the taste of so 
bitter a drug, more meet to purge you of them, than worthy for your kingly acceptance ? 
I never heard a more deriding scorn; and vow that, if but this alone, were I you, they 
should learn a short lesson. 


received considerable support on the English borders, not, as it is alleged, without the 
connivance of lord Zouche, the English ambassador in Scotland, and the sanction of the 
queen he finally marched upon Edinburgh at the head of several hundred men. The 
king, having early intelligence of the rebellious movement, gathered together a consider- 
able force, and advanced to meet his enemy. Some little skirmishing took place, but 
Bothwell, finding himself in the presence of a force too numerous to be withstood, 
despaired of success, dispersed his men, and retired within the English border. In the 
following letter the king indignantly calls upon the queen to account for the assistance 
and shelter which Bothwell had received from England; applying to her the epithet 
"seduced," which, in her last letter that printed from Tytler's Scotland she had used 
in reference to himself. He also reminds her of his conduct when O'llourke, the Irish 
rebel, took refuge in Scotland, and hopes she will not reject his application and thus 
drive him to say with Virgil, "flectere si nequeo superos, Acheronta movebo." This 
letter was sent by Colvill laird of Wemyss and Edward Bruce the titular abbot of Kinloss. 

So many unexpected wonders, madame and dearest sister, haue of 
lait so ouer-shaddouid my eyes and mynde, and dazilde so all my 
sensis, as in treuth I nather know quhat I shulde saye, nor quhair 
at first to beginne : but, thinking it best to take a paterne of youre- 
self, since I deale uith you, I must, repeatting the first uordis of your 
last letter, only the sexe chaingid, saye, " I rew my sicht that veuis 

" The best that I commend in your letter is, that I see your judgment too good to affirm 
a truth of their speech, but that alone they so say. Howbeit, I muse how you can want 
a law to such, as whose denial, if it were ever, could serve to save their lives whose treasons 
are so plain; as the messenger who would for his own sake not devise it, if for truth's cause 
he had it not in his charge : for who should ever be tried false, if his own denial might 
save his life ? In princes' 1 causes many circumstances yield a sufficient plea for such a 
king as will have it known : and ministers they shall lack none, that will not themselves 
gainsay it. Leave off such cloaks, therefore, I pray you; they will be found too thin to 
save you from wetting. For your own sake play the king, and let your subjects see you 
respect yourself, and neither to hide or to suffer danger and dishonour. And that you 
may know my opinion, judgment, and advice, I have chosen this nobleman," whom I 
know wise, religious, and honest; to whom I pray you give full credit, as if myself were 
with you : and bear with all my plainness, whose affection, if it were not more worthy 
than so oft not followed, I would not have gone so far. But blame my love if it exceed 
any [my ?] limits. Beseeching God to bless you from the advices of them that more prize 
themselves than care for you, to whom I wish many years of reign." (Tytler'a Scotland, 
ix. 141.) 

* Edward lord Zouche of Haryngworth. 


the euident spectacle of a seducit queue." * For quhen I enter be- 
tuixt tuo extremitis in iudgin of you, I hadd farr rathest intterprett 
it to the least dishonoure on your part, quhich is ignorant erroure. 
Appardone me, madame, for so long approued freindship requyris a 
rounde plainness. For qulien, first, I consider quhat strange effectis 
haue [of] laite appearid in your cuntrey ; hou my auouid traitour 
hath not only bene oppinlie resett in youre realme, but plainly maid 
his recidence in your proper houses, euer plainliest kythith himself 
quhaire greatest confluence of people uas ; and, quhiche is most of all, 
hou he hath receaued Englishe monney in a reasonnable quantitie, 
uaged both Englishe and Skottishe men thairwith, proclaimed his 
paye at dyuerse parishe churches in England, conuenid his forcis 
uithin England, in the sicht of all that border, and thairfrome con- 
temptouslie cummid and campit within a myle of my principal! citie 
and present abode, all his trumpettouris, and dyuerse wagid men, 
being English ; and being by myself in person repulsit from that 
place, returned bake in Englande with displayed banners, and since 
that tyme, with sound of trumpet, making his troupis to muster 
within Englishe ground : quhen, first, I saye, I consider this strainge 
effectis, and then again I call to mynd, upon the one part, quhat 
number of solemne promeises, not only by your ambassadouris but 
by many lettirs of your owin hand, ye haue both maid and reiterate unto 
me, that he sholde haue no harboure uithin your cuntrey, yea, rather 
stirring me further up against him then seaming to pittie him your- 
self, and, upon the other pairt, weying my desairtis [which] you knou, 
for being a freind to you, I haue euer ben an enemie to all youre en- 
nemies, and the onlie point I can be challengid in, that I take not 
suche forme of order, and at suche tyme, with sum particulare men 
of my subjectis as paraduenture ye could do if ye uaire in my roume ; 
quhen thus I enter in consideration with my self, I cannot suirlie sa- 
tisfie my self with uondring aneuch upon these aboue mentionatt 

* See p. 98. 


effectis ; for to affirm that these things are by your direction or pri- 
uitie, it is so farr against all princelie honoure, as I protest I abhorre 
the least thocht thairof. And againe, that so wyse and prouident a 
prince, hauing so long and happelie gouernid, shoulde be so sylid and 
contemnid by a great number of heir owin subjectis, it is hardly to 
be beleuid : if I kneu it not to be a maxime in the state of princes, 
that we see and heare all with the eyes and eares of others, and if 
thise be deceaueris, we cannot shunn deceat. Now, madame, I haue 
refuge to you at this tyme, as my only pilote to gyde me safelie 
betuixt thir Charibdis and Silla. Solue thir doubtis, and lett it 
be sene ye will not be abused by your owin subjectis, quho preferis 
the satisfeing of their base-myndit affections to youre princelie 

That I wrote not the ansoure of youre last lettirs with your laite 
ambassadoure, and that I returnit not a letter with him, blame onlie, 
I praye you, his owin behauioure ; quho, althocht it pleased you to 
terme him wyse, religiouse, and honest, had bene fitter, in my opi- 
nion, to carie the message [of] a heraut then any freindlie comission 
betuixt tuo neichboure princes ; for, as no reason could satisfie him, 
so skarcelie could he haue patience euer to heare it offerid. But if 
ye gaue him a lairge comission, I darr ansoure for it he tooke it als 
well upon him, and thairfore haue I rather choosid to send you my 
ansoure by my owin messingeris. Suffer me not, I praye you, to be 
abusid with your abusairis, nor graunt no ouersicht to ouersee your 
owin honoure. Remember quhat ye promeisid by youre letter of 
thankis for the deliuerie of O'Rorike. I trust ye will not putt me in 
balance with suche a traitrouse counterpois, nor willfully reject me, 
constraining me to saye with Uirgill, Fkctere si nequeo superos, Ache- 
ronta movebo. 

And to giue you a proofe of the continouance of my honest affec- 
tion, I haue directed these tuo gentlemen unto you, quhom I will 
hairtelie praye you to credit as myself, in all that thay haue in 
chairge to deliuer unto you ; and, because the principall of thaime 


goes to France, to returne the other bake with a good ansoure with 
all conuenient speede. And thus assuring you that friendship shall 
neuer faill upon my pairt, I committ you, madame and dearest sister, 
to the holy protection of the Allmichtie. From Edinburgh, the xiii. 
of Apryle, 1594. 

Your most louing and affectionatt brother and cousin, 


No. LV. 



T/ie queen notices James's allusion to her previous letter in his last 
replies to the imputation of having sheltered Bothwell is indignant 
at James's use of threats to her warns him against receiving aid 
from foreigners. 

The taunts and accusations in James's last letter aroused the " lion port " of his majes- 
tic neighbour. Our historians, in ignorance of the following letter and its successor, have 
supposed that Elizabeth took James's indignant appeal in good part, and was all smiles to 
his ambassadors. The following must have convinced James that it was rather dangerous 
to bandy words with her English majesty, or to make ambiguous quotations to her from 
well known classics. 

Thogh by the effectz, I slid see, my good brother, that euer my 
aduisis be folowed, yet you haue whitsafed to giue them the reding 
I wel understand, having made some of them the theme of your last, 
thogh, God knowes, applied fur awry from ther true sence or right 
desart ; for if I bin in abuse, I claime you the author of my deceat, 
in beliving more good than the sequele hathe told me. For I haue 
great wronge if you suppose that any perswation from whomsoeuer can 
make me haue one iuel opinion of your actions, if themselues be not 
the cause. I confes that diuers be the affections of many men, some 
to one, some to another, but my rule of trust shal neuer faile me, 


whan it is grounded, not on the sandes of euery mans humor, but on 
the stedy rock of approued fact. I shuld condemne my wicked dis- 
position to founde any amytie promised upon so tikel ground that 
others hate might breake the boundz of my loue, and upon others 
jugementz to bild my confidence. For Bodwelz bold and unruly 
entrance into my bordars, I am so fur from gilt of suche a faulte, as 
I protest if I had receaued an answer, in seuentene wekes space, of 
my lettar that contained his offer to reveale unto you the treason of 
the lordz with forennars, I could sone haue banished him from thens ; 
and next, he came with your owne hand to warant that no offence 
was imputed, wiche made the borderars readiar to receaue him ; but 
after I had not left unpunist some of his receatars, I could not haue 
beliued the durst haue procurid the pane due for suche desart, and 
minde to make them affraid to ventur suche a crime agane ; and if 
ordar giuen now to all the wardens do not suffice, I vowe ther bodies 
and pursis shal wel suffar therfor. 

I wil not troble you with recital of what this gentilman hathe hard 
in all the other pointz, but this toucheth me so nere as I must an- 
swer, that my desartz to you haue bine so sincere as shal neuer nide 
a threte of hel to her that hathe euer procured your blis. And, that 
you may knowe I am that prince that neuer can indure a menace at 
my ennemys hand, muche les of one so dearly traictid, I wyl giue 
you this bond, that affection and kind traictement shal euer preuaile, 
but feare or doute shal neuer procure aught from me; and do 
advowe, that if you do aught by forainers, wiche I knowe in ende 
worst for yourselfe and country, hit shal be the worst aide that euer 
king had, and I feare may make me do more than you wyl cal back 
in haste. Deare brother, use suche a frende, therfor, as she is worthe 
and giue her euer cause to remaine suche a one, as her affection 
hathe euer merited, whos raschenes is no suche as neglect ther owne 
so nere if the wil not forgo ther best and shun ther owne mishaps, 
whom non can at my hand procure but your owne factz. Thus, 
hoping that this bearar wyl tel you my faithful mening and sincere 


professions, with al the rest that I haue committed to him, I leue 
this skribling, besiching God euer more to preseme you. 

Your most affectionate sistar and cousin, 

To our good brother 
the king of Skotts. 

18 May, 1594. 

No. LVI. 



Reply to the queen's last Utter James explains his meaning in the use 
of the words " seduced queen," and in his quotation from Virgil 
if the queen still thinks him in fault he craves pardon hopes she will 
hasten the money she has promised him, and is delighted with a con- 
ference she had with one of his ambassadors respecting him. 

The following characteristic and amusing letter dispels all notion that Elizabeth 
was in any degree overcome in this controversy by her pedantic correspondent. His 
commentary upon the line of Virgil, and his supposition " suppose I am Juno" must 
have called up a smile upon the now thin and withered lips of the English queen. James 
had at last been driven into the determination to put down the Roman catholic earls by 
force, and the money to which he alludes was a sum which Elizabeth had promised him, 
provided he would rid the land of the leaders of the Spanish faction. 

Because I persaue by youre last letter, and the report of my am- 
bassadoure, madame and dearest sister, that ye haue farre mistaiken 
the meaning of my last letter, I am forcitt to lett this present serue 
for a short apologie thairof, for in two principall pointis I persaue ye 
haue mistakin me. And first, quhairas ye interprete my imitation 
of your uordes, in the beginning of my letter, to meane, that ye are 
seducid by trusting false reportis maid of me, if ye please to consider 
the follouing discourse of my letter, ye will finde I meanid, by sum 
of youre owin subiectis, quho in resetting and assisting my auouid 

CAMD. soc. p 


traitoure in dyuers pairts of your kingdome, without youre allouance 
or priuetie, seducit you, in abusing youre princelie honoure and will ; 
quhiche appearis to be butt ouer trew, since by youre owin letter ye 
graunte and auowis to make thaime to be deulie punished for the 
same. And suirlie, madame, it appearis your subjectis do not yett 
uearie to abuse you, since, notwithstanding your laite proclamations, 
he is still resett within your owin cuntrey. But in this I trust I 
neide not to moue you, since the hurting of youre princelie honoure 
by the contempt of your lawis, will, I doubt not, stirr you up to take 
ordoure thairwith. 

Nou the other point of mistaking is, of yone Latin uerse in the 
hinder end of my letter, quhich I perceaue ye interprett to be a 
threatning of you, but I doubt not ye uill conceaue farr otheruayes 
of my meaning thayrby, if ye will [be] pleased to wey first the meaning 
of the authore that first wrote it, and since consider quhat praceidis 
and follouis in my letter that alledges it. For Virgill faineth that 
Juno, being in a raage that the rest of the Goddis, throuch Uenus 
persuacion, uolde not consent to the uraikke of Aneas, quhom 
againis she baire ainveterate haitred, as against all Troye, she not 
onlie pronounceth these uordis of my letter, but immediatly goes to 
Alecto, one of the hellishe furies, and persuaidis her to stirre up Turnus 
in Italic to uarre against Aneas, thairby to hinder his conquests thair. 
Nou to make the allusion then. Suppose (omnis comparatio claudicat 
uno pede,) I am Juno ; ye are the rest of the Goddis ; Bothuell is 
Aneas ; and other forraine princes are Acheron. Junos seeking aide 
of Acheron, than, was only for the urakke of Aneas, and no uayes 
ather for the inuading or threatning of the rest of the Goddis. On 
the other pairt, quhire this uerse is sett downe in my letter, I say, 
not that I am of mynde so to do, butt, by the contraire, T saye I 
trust you will not constraine me so to doe, and the uerrie next uordis 
I subioine are, " and to giue you a proofe of my honest affection." 
And thus, madame, my intention uas, to complaine unto you, not to 
threattin you ; thairby seeking youre ayde, and nather seeking, nor 
leaning to, the ayde of others. So, in a word, my prayer uas to you, 


as ue all praye to Godd, Leade us not into temptation. But, as euer 
it be, suppose in this, I interprett my intention, yett I euer baire 
that reuerence to all uertuouse ladies, but aboue all to you, quhose 
bloode, long and trustie freindshipp, and manifolde uertues, requyres 
such louing and kynde reuerence of me, as I ame not so to stande in 
my defence, but, if ye thinke it a faulte, I will craue pardon for it, and 
onlie claime to my homelie rudeness, quhiche I hoape ye will accept 
in the better pairt, since quhat I wrote of you I wrote only to you. 
And thairfore, madame, I trust neuer to deserue the least thocht of 
youre suspicion of any dealing of myne with youre ennemies ; for, I 
protest before Godd, I neuer, to this houre, had dealing, directlie or 
indirectlie, with any of thaime, ather to the prejudice of you, or 
your state, or the state of religion, and ame content, besydis my 
many by-past promesis, that this letter remaine a pledge of my faith 
heirin, als uell for tymes to com as by-past, aye and quhill (as Godd 
forbidd) I discharge my self honestlie unto you, quhich shall neuer 
be, except ye constraine me unto it, but absit omen. 

I also trust, that, before this tyme, youre ambassadoure has in- 
formid you of sum of my proceidingis at this parliament, to your 
satisfaction. As to the dispatche geuen to my ambassadouris, 
quhairas ye are generall in tyme of payment and quantitie of the 
support craued by thaime, yett I doubt not ye will considder my 
present adoes, hauing nou begunn and entred in action ; quhairin I 
craue an ansoure according to the proverbe qui dto dat bis dat. 
That of one thing I will hairtlie pray you, that quhat heis done to 
me in this turne ye do it onlie of youre selfe, that my thankis maye 
onlie be fore you, for I desyre neuer to be in the common of any 
subiectis in such cases. 

And nou to end, I cannot omitt to shau you, that the only comfort 
I receaued of your ansouris at the returne of the one of my ambassa- 
douris, uas the prime conference ye hadd with Brus concerning me, 
quho hathe maid suche discourse thairof to me, as in my opinion he 
micht passe maister in the airt of chirurgie, for descryuing so well 
the anatomic of your kynde and constante affection touardis me ; but, 


assuring you that 1 shall neuer fbrgett to paye it with all thankefull- 
nes on mv pairt, I commit you, madame and dearest sister, to Goddis 
most holy protection. From my palleis of Hole rud house, the fyf't of 
June 1594. 

Your most louing and affectionate brother and cousin, 


No. LVII. 



The queen rejoices that James is at length about tc resist the catholic earls 
in person he may perceive wliat danger there is in glorifying too 
high and too suddenly a boy of years and conduct hopes he will give 
his nobility an example never to combine with foreigners praise of 
the laird of Wemyss intercession on behalf of the master of Gray 
sends money for " horse-meat" 

Having raised an army against the Roman catholic earls, James committed it to the 
command of his youthful favourite, the earl of Argyll, then only nineteen years of age. The 
battle of Glenlivat ensued, in which Argyll was totally defeated, but with a loss which was 
fatal to the conquerors. When the following letter was written, James was at the head of a 
fresh army, marching northward to avenge the losses of Argyll the " boy of years and 
conduct "who is alluded to by Elizabeth. The master of Gray, for whose pardon she 
intercedes, had passed the period which had elapsed since his disgrace in France. 

My most deare brother, Thogh I wold haue wisched that your 
sound counsels oft-giuen you, and my many lettars intercepted wiche 
made to plain a shewe of that hye treason that to late you beliued, 
might haue prevented your ouer great peril and to muche hazarde, 
yet 1 rejoys with who is most gladlist, that at lengh (thogh I confes 
almost to late) hit pleseth you so kingly and valiantly to resist with 
your parson ther oulter-cuidant malignant attempt, in wiche you 
haue honord your selfe, reioysed your frends, and confound, I 
hope, your proud rebelz. You may see, my deare brother, what 
danger it bredes a king to glorifie to hie and to soudanly a boy of 


yeres and counduict, whos untimely age for discretion bredes rasche 
consent to undesent actions. Suche speke or the way, and attempt 
or the considar. The waight of a kingly state is of more poix than 
the shalownis of a rasche yonge mans hed can waigh, therfor I trust 
that the causeles zele that you haue borne the hed of this presump- 
tion shal rather cary you to extirpe so ingratius a roote, in finding 
so sowre fruite to springe of your many fauors ivel-acquited, rather 
than to suffer your goodnis to be abused with his many skusis for 
coulors of his good menings. Though at the first your carire was 
not the best, yet I hope your stop will crowne all. If you now do 
not cut of clerely any future hope to your nobilitie, through this ex- 
ample, neuer to combine with forenars, or compact amonge them- 
selues to your danger, I wowe to God you wyl neuer posses your 
dignitie long. Wedes in fildes, if the be suffred, wil quickly ouer- 
growe the corne, but subiectz, being dandeled, wil make ther owne 
raignes, and for-let an other raigne. My affection to your surty 
bredes my plannes, wiche I dout not but by your sower experience 
you wil fully beliue hireafter, hauing so lately proued the sincerite 
of my dealings. God so prosper me in my affaires as I maligne none 
of your subiectz, nor euer wold exaggerat any matter but for your 
seurty, whom I mind to take euer as great a care of as if only the 
interest of my life and person consisted theron. 

This gentelman, the lord of Wemes, I find a most careful subiect 
of his prince, and one most curius to atcheue as muche as you com- 
mitted to him, in wiche I dout not but I haue satisfied you in honor, 
as time and comoditie serue, with wiche I wil not molest you more 
than refer me to his declaration, with this only, that no one answer 
to al but procideth from a most parfaict good affection toward you, 
and so I desire, with most affection, that you interprete hit. 

I must not omit, for concience sake, to speke a few wordz of the 
mastar of Gray, with whom I haue had long discours, in wiche I find 
him the most gridiest to do you acceptable seruise that I haue euer 
hard any, and dothe lay none of his disgracis, banismentz, nor los, in 
any part to you, but only to perswations of suche as ment his ruine, 


and hopes, with his good indeuors, to merite your formar grace ; and 
for my owne [part], I am nothing partiall to him for his particular, but 
this I must confes, being as honest as he is sufficient, I thinke your 
realme possesseth not his secound. I nowe speake upon my knowelege, 
therfor lose not so good an instrument for your affaires, if you knowe 
no more against him than I can lerne. You will pardon my auda- 
cious writing, as one whos yeres teacheth more than her wit, neuer 
ceasing to lift up my handes and hart with deuout [prayers] for 
your most prosperous safe and sure succes in this voiage, for which 
I haue sent you but to pay for hors-mete. 

Your most affectionat louing sistar and cousin, 

To my deere brother 
the king of Scotland. 



James, surprised at the queen's long silence, sends an ambassador to ex- 
plain his situation to her his Spaniolised rebels have only fled in 
order to return in greater strength solicits her assistance against their 
common enemy. 

James's success against the Roman catholic earls was complete. Their strongholds were 
destroyed, and themselves driven to seek safety in flight or in banishment. In the moment 
of his success, a coolness ensued between Elizabeth and the Scottish monarch, upon the 
subject of certain payments which he contended she had promised him. For nine months, 
during all which time James acted manfully upon the policy Elizabeth advised, she never 
wrote to him. James at length broke the long silence by the following application for 
assistance against a fresh attempt which it was rumoured was about to be made by the 
Spanish faction. 

Since the returne of my secretarie from you, madame and dearest 
sister, I haue patientlie abiddin the tryall of tyme to serue for a 
proofe of my course by my actions, that thairby all cause of doubt- 


ing being remoukl, a commoun [danger] micht by a commoun assist- 
ance be preuented. But, upon the one pairt, fynding you slower 
herin then ather youre uill or your uowis do require of you, and, on 
the other, imputting it to no lake of youre goode-will but of treu 
information, I haue now, at last, maid choice of the bearare heirof, 
my seruant, to informe you treulie of all these things ; as the fittest 
messenger to informe you of the quhole progresse of my actions in 
this great cause, since by him I did also aduertishe you of my first 
proceiding thairin by lau. Surelie, madame, if it shall please you 
to wey it, ye will finde that we both are but at a truce, and not at 
peax, with the Romishe and Spanishe practices. These Spaniolizde 
rebels of mine, that are fledd the cuntrey, are but retired to fetche 
a greatter fairde[?], if thay maye ; and, beleue me, if any wolde per- Stt 
suade you otheruayes, thay but abuse you for thaire owin gaine, or 
at least thinking it sufficient gaine to thaime to anoye quhome thay 
haite. Hou can I uonder aneuch that ye, quho uas so uachfull for 
my uell at the first breeding of thir practises, as ye neuer uearied 
from tyme to tyme to foruairne me of my perrell, resenting it als 
uiuelie as if it had bene your owin, should nou, in the uerrie heicht 
of rypenesse thairof, be fallen in so lethargique a sleip, as ye are so 
farr from ather aduertishing or aiding, that ye do not so much as 
once [write] to enquyre quhat hath bene heir a-doing these nyne 
monethis past ? But appardone me, I praye you, to complayne of 
you to yourself; for use me as ye list, ye shall neuer shake [me] of, 
by so many knottis ame I linkit unto you. Nather shall youre slow- 
nesse quhyle past be able to blott out of my thankfull memorie youre 
manyfolde proofes of kyndnesse shouin touardis me in all tymes past, 
onlie I craue that ye remember ue haue a commoun enemie, and 
that nou ue must ather concurre to holde thaime under our feet als 
long as we are treading upon thaime, or ellis, if they gett layser 
again, it will but learne thaime experience to wrestle the more cun- 
ninglie the next tyme. I trust my pairt be nou past fieri, I praye 
youe lett your assistance appeare nou in esse. But remitting the 
more large discourse of all things to the bearare, quhome I pray you 


fauourablie to heare and firmlie to trust, I comitt you, madame and 
dearest sister, to the protection of the Allinichtie. From my pallais 
of Falkelande, the viii. of Julie, 1595. 

Your most louing and affectionat brother and cousin, 


No. LIX. 



The queen's continual care for the common safety of both countries she 
does not mean to break her slumber on account of the malice of her 
enemies -praises James's efforts with pen and sword recommenda- 
tion of her ambassador. 

The folio wing letter alludes to preparations which were rumoured to be making in Spain, 
for a renewal of the attempt to invade England. It also contains a studied commendation 
of a charge to his subjects just published by king James. The charge thus alluded to 
was a proclamation calling upon the Scottish people to unite with England to resist the 
Spaniards the common enemy of both nations. It was dated the 2nd January 1595. 
See it in Calderwood, v. 389. 

My deare brother, If the wracked state, and wel-ny ruined, of this 
poore gentylman, through the faitheles trust of desceving servantz, 
in looking every wike of the ending of his troubles, [had not occa- 
sioned me to delay,] I could not haue left my pen so long dry, but 
wold haue fild hit to you with matter ful of truthe, and memorialz of 
my cares, wiche neuer ar at rest for your best avail, and ment to 
warne you of suche occurrance as other nations afourd me ; spetially, 
suche as might touche the safty of our countryes, and honors of 
ourselves. Althogh I do not dout, as now I do perceaue, that you 
shuld think them now overstale for newes, being by good espialz not 
made ignorant of our ennemis driftz, whos skope haue ther boundz 
while ether Hues in raigne, but the ever-guidar of best actions, and 
readiest ruinar of wicked actes, wyl, I doute not, coule ther heat, abate 
ther pride, and confounde ther forse. I am not suche a wekely, nor 


of so base a courage, that euer I mene breake one slombar for tber 
malice, nor ons clreame of ther victoiri, whos ground-worke is of so 
slippar foundation that the hold of siiche edefice wyl be overturnd 
with liis owne gilt. I may not deny but Epimetheus is no compa- 
nion for a king. With Prometheus, therfor, I mynd to folowe that 
after wische condemne not for iugement, and therafter prepare suche 
menes and power, that, I feare not, shal be so marshald as shal make 
us no skorne to the world, nor delite to our foes ; in some suche sort 
as I here you haue begone ; whos praise, if I shuld not lessene in 
praising, I could more delate, but this muche I must tel you, that I 
cannot imagin how you could by any more glorious menes set out your 
care for your land, your loue to your neigbors, your hate to suche 
wrongeful invadars, than with your pen and charge to your subiectz 
you haue utterd, in wordz of suche effect and matter, of suche 
waight, as, in honest dimars, hit may mar the faon of diuelische 
machines,* and erase the hartz of treason-mynding men. In me, 
hit hathe set a deape impression of a cousin-like zele, that myxith 
not his los with her decay, and joyeth not that she shuld perische 
first, in hope of bettar fare ; wiche, as hit is euer unsure, so sild is 
hit not a winde-shaked blast. But your so spedy care for thretes, 
that the may not arive to dedes, doth assure me that the shal haue no 
just cause that shuld make suche a skruple. Receve, therfor, deare 
brother, bothe my censare and my thankes therfor, as she that wyl 
not suffar you to go one fote beyond her in busy inquiring and narow 
serening what fitteth best for my counsel, or my warning for that 
may conserne your safety or estate, as I haue charged this my em- 
bassador to tel you more at length, as time and cause shal invite me, 
not omitting to beseche you, that as I knowe him most obsequious 
in aught that may conserne you, so hit wyl please you to shadow 
him with your grace against the spiritz of suche as may fortune 
envie him but shal never mache him. Thus I end my tedious 
skribling, wiche you wil the rather pardon for to recompence the 

* For " machinations." 


long space that my writing hathe not spoken with you, praying the 
euer-liuing God euer to preserue you from sinistar counsel, and al 
good elz may euer befal you may prosper. 

Your most affectionat sistar and cousin, 


Receaued from Mr. Bowes 
Feb. 1596. 

No. LX. 



The queen expresses astonishment that any difficulty should be made 
about doing her right shall a castle of hers be assailed by night and 
the offender not be delivered up to her ? she refuses to appoint com- 
missioners in so clear a case. 

This and the two following letters relate to an achievement which has always been 
regarded as one of the most daring and best managed of its kind. A well-known 
borderer, named William Armstrong of Kinmont, or, as he was termed in song and 
amongst the people, " Kinmont Willie," was unfairly made prisoner by the deputy of the 
English warden, and was lodged in triumph in the castle of Carlisle. The Scottish 
warden, sir Walter Scott of Buccleuch, enraged at this infringement of border law, took 
an oath that he would free the captive. With the aid of a few men as daring as himself, 
and under favour of a dark and stormy night, Buccleuch and his little band scaled the 
castle wall, surprised the sentries, forced their way with ploughshares and sledge hammers 
into the inner prison, and mounting the captive upon the broad shoulders of Red Rowan, 
" the starkest man in Teviotdale," bore him off in his irons. Elizabeth " stormed not 
a little," says Spottiswood, at such an outrage, and insisted that Buccleuch should be 
delivered into her hands. The Scotch people, mad with delight at an exploit which 
reminded them of the days and deeds of Wallace, would have defended Buccleuch and 
defied the queen,* but James after much ado procured the heroic culprit to be committed 
to custody, and after a while he was given up to Elizabeth. His distinguished modern 

Birch's Mem. Eliz. ii. 25, 43, 111. 


namesake has informed us that the queen desired to see the gallant chieftain. He was 
taken to court, and Elizabeth, darting upon him one of her most awful looks, asked 
him, as he knelt at her feet, how he dared to storm one of her castles. Nothing 
daunted, the gallant borderer replied, " What is there, madam, that a brave man dare not 
do ? " Ever ready to admire courage, even in her enemies, the queen instantly exclaimed 
to those who stood around her, " With a thousand such leaders, I could shake any throne 
in Christendom ! " 

My deare brother, I am to seake with what argument my letters 
should be fraught, since such themes be given me as I am loth to 
finde, and am slow to recite. Yet, since I needs must treate of, and 
unwillingly receave, I cannot omitte to sett before you a to rare 
example of a seduced king by a sinister councell. Was it ever seen 
that a prince from his cradle preserved from the slaughter, help up 
in royall dignitie, conserved from many treasons, maintained in all 
sortes of kindenes, should remunerate with so harde a measure such 
deare desarts ? With doubt to yealde a just treaties responce to a 
lawfull frendes demaunde ? Ought it be put to a question whither 
a king should doe another, his like, a right ? Or shoulde a councell 
be demaunded their pleasure what he himselfe shoulde do ? Were 
it in the nonage of the prince it might have some couler, but in a 
fathers age it seameth strange, and I dare say without example. 

I am sorry for the cause that constraines the speach, especially in 
so apert a matter, whose note growes so farre, and is of that nature, 
that it, I feare me, will more harme the wronger than the wronged. 
For how little regard soever be healde of me, yet I should grieve to 
much to see you neglect your selfe, whose honnor is touched in 
suche degree as the English, whose regard I dought not but you 
have in some esteame for ther good thoughts of you, will measure 
your love by your deedes, not your wordes in your paper. Where- 
fore, for fine, lett this suffice you, that I am as evill treated by 
named frend as I could be by my knowen foe. Shall anie castle or 
habitacle of myne be assailed by a night-larcyn, and shall not my 
confederate send the offender to his due punisher ? Shall a frend 
sticke at that demand that he ought rather to prevent ? The law of 
kingely love would have sayde nay, and not, for perswation of suche 


as never can nor will steed you, but dishonuor you, to keepe their 
owne rule. Lay behynde you the due regard of me, and in it of 
your selfe, who as long as you use this trade wil be thought not of 
your selfe ought, but with conventions what they will. 

For commissioners I will never graunt for an act that he cannot 
deny that made ; for what so the cause be made, no cause should 
have don that And when you, with a better waighed judgement, 
shall consider, I am sure my aunsweare shall be more honorable 
and just, which I expect with most speede, as well for you as for my 
self. For other doubtfull and littigious causes in our borders I uill 
be ready to apointe comissioners, if I shall finde them needfull, but 
for this matter, of so vilanous an usage, assure you I will never be 
so aunswered as hearers shall need. In this and many other mat- 
ters I require your trust in my ambassador, who faithfully will re- 
torne them to me. Praying God for your safe keepinge, 

Your loving sister and cousin, 


No. LXI. 



The queen reiterates her refusal to appoint commissioners to try ivhether 
any subject of Scotland might take a prisoner out of her castle, 
sJie requires the delivery of the offender for ilie reparation of her 

My deere brother, The more I see your letters, reede your 
answeare, and weye your resolutions, I ever rather impose the fault 
on our ambassadors neglect, in not touching the materiall ground- 
worke of this our unkindness, than can imagine that, for your owne 
honour, thoughe all respect of us were debard, you should not weye 
so the ballances awry as that a meane mans taking, whether right 
or wrong, shold weye downe the poyse, that our treacherous castells 


breake shold have no right redresse. Nether, if you understand it 
aright, can we beleeve, that if all the counsell of Scotland wold tell 
it you, they may cause you be persuaded, that commissioners should 
need or ought trye whether any subject of yours shold take out of 
any our holds a prisoner, however taken. And therefore, do not 
beguyle your selfe, nor let them make you believe, that ever I will 
put that to a tryall as a matter doubtfulL But for the truth to be 
knowen of the first taking of that silly man, and divers other pointes 
fallen out betuixt our wardens, I agree very willingly to such an 
order, but lett the matter of greatest moment, wich is the malefact 
of your Locrine, be first redrest. And if such a treachery had bene 
committed by a man that either ought for deere affection (won him 
by his demerites), nay if not by such as whose deeds in publick 
(whatsoever in private) hath well shewed his small regard of your 
commands, I might have borne with your partiality ; but if you re- 
member his former forgoing deeds, as well in your realme as with- 
out, I shall need lesse to solicite my honour and his right. Where 
you yeld that if such causes be not ever adjudged by such like man- 
ner of commissioners you'l yeld to what censure of yours I shold 
choose, I will lothely take such advantage. For yf you ever found 
that it were put to tryall whither such a violent entrye were laufull, 
or that the malefactor was not rendred, I will wage my credit of 
that wager. And uhen you playnely nowe do see my true meaning 
of repaire of honor, which so lately hath been blotted, and howe no 
desire of quarrelling for tryfles, nor backwardnes in faithfull affec- 
tion, wich you never shall finde to quayle but your owne desart, I 
hope at length you will postpose your newe advisers, and remember 
her who never yet omitted any part that might concerne a most 
faithfull frendshippes love. And for such one hold me still, that 
whatever she hears, yea by your owne, will never trust but you, as 
God best knowes ; whome I beseech inspyre you ever the best. 

Your most affectionate sister, 

E. R. 


No. LXII. 



The king understanding that the only thing the queen requires in 
reference to Buccleucfts attempt, is the reparation of her honour, 
wounded by the breach of her castle, has commanded Buccleuch into 
ward, and requests to be further informed of her mind herein. 

Madame and dearest sister, I perceaue by youre last letter that 
the onlie thing ye stikke at concerning Bukleuchis attempt is, that 
your honoure maye onlie be repaired thairin, and for all other quas- 
tionable matteris, ye are content that with all expedition they may 
be handeled by comissioneris. Suirlie, madame, my mistaking your 
meaning quhill nou in that matter hath bene the cause of my so long 
delaye to satisfie you thairin, for, in respect of your ambassadouris 
first complainte in that matter, craving first fyling* and then deliuerie, 
I coulde not but tliinke, that, according to the custome euer ob- 
serued in border causes, ane ordinarie forme of tryell behoued to 
preceide ane ordinarie punishement ; but since I do nou finde it is 
only your honoure ye respect heirin, hurt by the breache of your 
castell, suirlie, as I ualde be loathe to graunte to any iniquitie in the 
forme [of] aequall justice or mutuall redresse betuixt oure tuo realmes, 
so uill I be als loath, on the other pairt, to giue you cause to thinke 
that any prince in Europe uolde be so cairfull to preserue your ho- 
noure from all blemishe as I, without regarde to the appetit of 
quhatsumeuer the best subiect in my lande. Both nearness of 
bloode and thankefulnese bindes me so to do, and since I haue neuer 
bene ather actoure or consentaire to your harme or dishonoure in any 
sorte, I wolde be sorie to beginne so badlie at this tyme, and to giue 
you sum proofe thairof, I haue without, yea rather aganes the ad- 
uyce of any, comandit in uairde the partie quhomwith ye are 
offendit, that it may be sene I will not allou of any thing that ye 

* Accusation, indictment. 


micht interprets to be ane offence unto you, quhill I maye be farther 
informed of your mynde herein ; quhich I pray you to haiste, toge- 
ther with sum speedie and indelayed order for commissioneris, as I 
wrote to you in my last For I doubt not it greuis your conscience 
to heare the smarte that the poor ones daylie receaues of all handis, 
and this insolence of borderaris can neuer be stayed but by commis- 
sioneris, quhairfore I once againe praye you to hasten thame, with 
als few ceremonies as maye be, that all delaye may be escheuid. 
And thus, praying you to excuse and take in good pairt my long de- 
laye of satisfeing your honoure, quhiche I hartelie pray you to 
impute to my mistaking, as I haue allreaddie declairid, I comitt you, 
madame and dearest sister, to the protection of the Allmichtie, quho 
motte still continue to giue you a victorious successe ouer all youre 
enemies. From Dumfermling, the 17 of Auguste, 1596. 

Your most louing and affectionate brother and cousin, 





The queen mediates between the king and the members of the kirk, who 
had over-audaciously made an attempt to remedy some injurious acts 
tending, as tliey believed, to the overthrow of presbyterianism. 

This letter has reference to an uproar which took place in Edinburgh on the 17th 
December 1596. James had permitted the Roman catholic earls to return to Scotland, 
and was endeavouring to bring about an arrangement for their partial restoration to their 
estates and honours. The attempt excited the over-zealous leaders of the kirk beyond all 
bounds of reason. The people adopted the feelings of their ministers, and outran their indis- 
cretion. The king was alarmed by a seditious tumult which threatened danger to his 
person. He quitted Edinburgh in indignation, removed the courts of justice, interdicted 
his nobles from resorting to the rebellious city, and assembled at Falkland an army of 
Highlanders and Borderers, with whom he threatened to take summary vengeance. The 
citizens, startled and terrified at the unwonted vigour of their offended sovereign, armed 
themselves and barricaded their houses, against the expected attack; and the last news 


which Elizabeth could have received when she wrote the following letter was, that James 
had ordered the leading ministers to be arrested, and was himself advancing to take 
military possession of his capital. The additional rumour perhaps had reached her, that the 
ancient city was to be delivered up to the mercy of the southern thieves, under the com- 
mand of that very Kinmont Willie whose capture had occasioned the storming of the 
castle of Carlisle by Scott of Buccleuch. James entered Edinburgh with his military 
guard on the 1st January, 1596-7. The provost and leading citizens made a submission 
on their knees. James inflicted a long harangue upon them, and made use of the 
advantage which he had gained over the too-impetuous kirk, to effect the introduction of 
various important alterations in ecclesiastical government. 

My deare brother, Yf a rare accident and an ill welcome newes 
had not broken my long silence, I had not now used my penes- 
speach, being to careftill of your quiet, and myndfull of your safetie, 
to omitt the expressing of both, by letting you knowe howe un- 
tymely I take this new-begone frensie, that may urge you to take 
such a course as may bring into opinion the verefying of such 
sclaunder as you have vowed to me to be farre from your thought. 
In this sort I meane it. Some members of the church, with their 
companies, have over-audaciously imboldned themselves to redresse 
some injurious acts that they feared might overthrow their profession, 
wich though I graunt no king for the manner ought beare the same, 
yet at the instant, when the newe-come banished lords be returned, 
and they seen, wincked at, without restraint, and spring growing on, 
when promised succour was attended, together with many lettres 
from Rome and elsewhere sent abroad to tell the names of men 
authorised from you (as they say, though I hope falsely) to assure 
your conformitie, as tyme may serve you, to establish the dangerous 
partie and fayle your owne. I wayle in unfayned sort that any just 
cause should be given you to call in doubt so disguised an act, and 
hope that you will so trye out this cause as that it harme not to you, 
though it ruyne them. You may of this be sure, that if you make 
your strength of so sandy a foundation as to call to your ayd such 
ayders as be not of your flock, whenas the one syde be foolish, rash, 
headlong, and brainesick, yet such as most defend you for them- 
selves, having no sure anchorage if you fayle them, and the other 


who have other props to sustayne them though they lack you, yea 
such as thogh your private love to their persons may inveagle your 
eyes not to pierce to deep into their treason, yet it is well knowen 
what their many petitions for foreine ayd might have intended, to 
your perrill and countries wrack, for seldome comes a stronger to a 
weaker soyle that thralls not the possessor, or dangers at last. I trust 
you think no lesse, or else they must justify themselves to con- 
demme you, for without your displeasure not feared for such a fact, 
no answere can sheild them from blame. Now to utter you my 
folly in being busy in others affayres, I suppose you will not mislike, 
since the source of all is care of your good, with desyre that nought 
be done that may imbolden the enemy, decrease your love, and en- 
danger your surety. This is, in summe, the fyne whereto I tend, and 
God I beseech to direct your hart in such sort as you please not 
your worst subjects, but make all knowe in a measure what is fitt 
for them, and make difference betwene error and malice. So God 
blesse you with a true thought of 

Your most affectionat sister, that means your best, 

E. R. 

No. LXIV. 



The queen calls James to account, in the angriest and most passionate 
manner, for some words said to be spoken by him in his parliament, 
respecting her. She has sent Bowes to him for an explanation. 

The particular words which occasioned the following indignant letter have not been 
found. The parliament alluded to assembled at Edinburgh on the 13th December 
1597. The Bowes who is mentioned as the bearer of this letter was sir William. Robert 
Bowes, who passed so many years of his life in Scotland as the English ambassador 
resident in that country, died at Berwick, and was buried there on the 16th December pre- 
ceding the date of this letter. 

When the first blast of a strange vnvsed and sild hard-of sounde 

CAMD. 80C. R 


had pearsed my ears, I supposed that flyeing fame, who with swift 
quills ofte paseth with the worst, had brought report of some un- 
trothe ; but when to to many records in your open parliament were 
witnesses of such pronounced wordes, not more to my disgrace than 
to your dishonor, who did forgett that (above all other regarde) a 
princes word ought utter naught of any, much less of a king, than 
such as to which truthe might say, " Amen." But * your neglecting 
all care of yourself, (what danger of reproche, besydes somewhat els, 
might light uppon [you]), you have chosen so unseemly a theame to 
charge your only carefull friend withall, of such matter as (were yow 
not amased in all senses) could not have been expected at your hands ; of 
such imagined vntruthes as never were once thought of in our tyme. 
I doe wonder what evyll spiritts have possest you, to set forthe so 
infamous devyses, void of any shewe of trothe. I am sorry that you 
have so wilfully falen from your best stay, and will needs throwe 
your self into the hurlpole of bottomles discreditt. Was the hast soe 
great to hye to such oprobry, as that you would pronounce a never- 
thought-of action afore you had but asked the question of her that 
best could tell it ? I see well wee two be of very different natures, 
for I vowe to God I would not corrupt rny tonge with an vnknowen 
report of the greatest foe I have, muche lesse could I detract my 
best-deserving freinde with a spott so fowle as scarsly may ever be 
outraised. Could you roote the desire of giftes of your subjects 
vppon no better grounde than this quagmire, wich to passe you 
scarcely may, without the slyppe of your own disgrace ? Shall im- 
bassage be sent to forayne princes laden with instrucons of your 
raishe advised charge ? I assure you the travaile of your creased 
words shall passe the boundes of to many landes, with an imputation 
of suche levytie, as when the true sonnshine of my sincere dealing 
and extraordinary care ever for your safety and honor shall over- 
shade to farr the dymme and mystie clowdes of false invectyves. 
I never yet loved you so little as not to moane your infamous 

* In the sense of "besides." 


dealynges wich you are in mynde. We see that my self shall 
possesse more princes wytness of my causeless injuries, which I 
could have wished had passed no seas, to testefy such memorials of 
your wronges. Bethink you of suche dealinges, and set your labour 
uppon such mends as best may. Though not right, yet salve some 
peece of this over-sly pp. And be assured, that you deale with such 
a kinge as will beare no wronges and indure [no] infamy. The 
examples have ben so lately seen as they can hardly be forgotten, of 
a farr mightier and potenter prince than many Europe hathe. Looke 
you not therefore that without large amends I may or will slupper- 
up such indignities. We have sent this bearer, Bowes, whome you 
may safely credit, to signifie such particularities as fits not a leters 
talk. And so I recomend you to a better mynde and more advysed 
conclusions. Praying God to guide you for your best, and delyver 
you from synister advise, as descry eth* 

Your more redyer sister than your self 
hathe done, for that is fitt, 


No. LXV. 



James replies to Elizabeth's accusations against him contained in her last 
passionate letter, which he had already answered to sir William Bowes 
he sends to her the abbot of Kinloss. 

This letter is James's reply to No. LXIV. The following extract from Tytler's Scot- 
land affords a partial illustration of the subject which had excited the anger of the queen ; 
but the historian had not seen the letter we have just printed. " On the arrival of sir W. 
Bowes at the Scottish court he found the king's mind entirely occupied by one great sub- 
ject his title to the English throne after the death of the queen. . . . From his obser- 
vations the ambassador dreaded that the royal mind was beginning to be alienated from 
England ; and in his first interview James certainly expressed himself with some bitterness 

* This obscure conclusion is printed as it stands in our MS. 


against Elizabeth. The expostulations addressed to him by his good sister, he said, were 
unnecessarily sharp. She accused him of diminished friendliness, of foreign predilections, 
of credulity and forwardness ; but he must retort these epithets, for he had found her 
too ready to believe what was untrue, and to condemn him unheard. It was true that 
when he saw other competitors for the crown of England endeavouring, in every way, 
to advance their own titles, and even making personal applications to the queen, he had 
begun to think it time to look to his just claim, and to interest his friends in his behalf. 
It was with this view he had required assistance from his people to furnish ambassadors to 
various foreign powers. This surely he was entitled to do : but any thing which had been 
reported of him beyond this was false; and his desire to entertain all kindly offices with 
his good sister of England continued as strong as it had been during his whole life." 
(ix. 276-8.) Besides the verbal reply given to sir William Bowes, James sent Edward 
Bruce of Kinloss to Elizabeth with the following written answer. 

Madame and dearest sister, Althoch I hadd sufficientlie purged to 
youre laite ambassadoure, sir William Bowis, the calumniouse and 
untreu reportis that came to youre eares of me, yett I coulde not sa- 
tisfey myself without sending one of my owin unto you, als uell to 
informe you more amplie of the treuth thairof, as to turne ouer most 
justlie on youre selfe that ouer-hastie credulitie quhiche in your letter 
ye laye so sharpelie to my charge. No farther will I ansoure parti- 
cularlie to your letter, since it becommes me not to stryue with a 
ladie, especiallie in that airt quhairin thaire sexe moste excellis ; but, 
beleue me, I take not unkyndelie your passionate letter, both because 
it uas but preuelie written to my self, as lykeuayes because I per- 
ceaue sparkis of loue to shyne throuch the middest of the thiccest 
clouddis of passion that ar thaire sett doun. And, indeede, I must 
confesse, if I had any wayes bene guiltie of that quhairuith ye 
charged me, I hadd deserued uorse at your hande then so kynde and 
homelie a reproofe as it uas, althoch it was bitter ; but amantium 
irce amoris redintegratio, quhiche makes me to truste that the fruitis 
of our contesting shall be sweet, althoch the buddis thairof wairre 
soure. And, for my pairt, I am onlie to continue with you in that 
olde contention of honest amitie, for quhiche effect I haue sent unto 
you my ambassadour, the abbot of Kinlosse, quhom I hairtelie pray 
you fauourabli to heare and truste, as one for quhose honestie and 
plainnes I will be ansourable. And thus, with my earnest prayeris 


to the Allmichtie for your prosperitie, I hairtelie praye you, madame 
and dearest sister, euer to make full accompte of me, as of 
Youre most louing and affectionate brother and cousin, 





The queen assures James that she is not of so viperous a nature as to 
suppose, or have a thought, that he is guilty of an offence charged 
against him. 

This and the three following letters relate to an accusation brought against James by a 
person named Valentine Thomas. Being in custody for theft, this miscreant took upon him 
to charge James with a design against the life of Elizabeth. Very jealous of his fame in a 
matter in which he was clearly guiltless, and apprehensive lest political malice might revive 
the false charge against him during some future possible struggle for the throne of England, 
James was anxious that his innocency should be made apparent by some producible 
documentary evidence. Elizabeth on her part seems to have thought that James was 
rather unnecessarily sensitive upon the subject. The date of the present letter is derived 
from Tytler's Scotland, ix. 440. A copy of it exists in the State Paper Office. 

My deere brother, Suppose not that my silence hathe any other 
roote then hatinge to make an argument of my writing to you that 
should molest you or trouble me, being most desirous that no 
mention might once be made of so villanous an act, especially that 
might but in word touche a sacred persone. But nowe I see that 
so lavishly it hath ben used [by the] aucthor thereof, that I can 
refraine no longer to make you partaker thereof sincerely, from the 
beginning to this hower, of all that hath proceded. And for more 
speed have sent charge with Bowes, to utter all without fraud or 
guile, assuring you that fewe things have displeased me more since 
our first amities. And charge you in Gods name to belyve, that I 
am not of so viperous a nature to suppose or have thereof a thought 


against you, but shall make the deviser have his desert, more for 
that then ought els. Referring my self to the true trust of this 
gentleman, to whome I beseeche you giue full affiance in all he shall 
assure you on my behalf. And so God I beseech to prosper you 
with all his graces, as dothe desire, 

Your most afiectionat syster. 




The king has sent an ambassador to inform the queen what he wishes to 
be done for the clearing of his honour in reference to the slanders 
raised by a base villain wishes all his dealings respecting her were 
written in a book laid open before her. 

Madame and dearest sister, I haue nou, according to my promeise 
in my other letter, directted unto you the bearer heirof, my seruande, 
quhomby ye shall be informed, quhat I craue for clearing my 
honoure anent these sklanders quhiche that base uillaine hath raised 
upon me ; quhairin I doubte not but youre honoure and loue to- 
wardis me will moue you not to see me innocentlie wronged. The 
particulars heirof I will not trouble you with by longsume letter, but 
remittis thaime to his declaration, together with sindrie other things 
quhairwith I ame falselie charged, as God shall juge me. For, on 
my honoure, I wolde wishe that all the direct or indirect dealings 
that ever I hadde, that micht concerne your persone or state, waire 
in a booke laid oppen before you, and then you woulde see, that no 
subject of Englande hath kept himself cleerer of any guilty [thought] 
against you then I haue done, euer since I was borne. 

I haue lykewayes commandit him to dealle with you in dyuerse 
other things, quhairin I also praye you to giue him a fauorable eare 
and truste. As for this foule attempt upon the bordouris, quhairof 


I latelie wrote unto you, I doubte nothing of the equitie of your 
judgement in kaice ye be treulie informed, but I knou youre officers 
on that bordure will make the faulte to seeme unto you als small 
and licht as they can ; but consider thaye are pairties, and determine 
according to richt. And thus, madame and dearest sister, I recom- 
mende you to the tuition of the Allmichtie. 

Your most louing and affectionate brother and cousin, 





The queen has signed a patent respecting James's innocency of the accusa- 
tion of Valentine Thomas, which he might have asked of many kings in 
vain she sends him a new-year's gift of good advice. 

The argument of my letter, my deare brother, if it should have 
the theame that your messengers late embassade did cheeflye treate 
of, would yeld suche a terror to my hand that my pen should scarce 
afford a right ortographie to the words it wrote. Unnaming there- 
fore what it was, it may suffice that you nor other king ever mett 
with a better mynde nor a rarer intent, wich hath bene well as fulle 
uttered, by my signature to such a graunt as I suppose you might 
have asked of manie kings and lackt such a furniture. But I for- 
thinke it not, with a trust that in all other matters that may concerne 
my self or state we shall be rightlye aunswered with equal! care and 
unfayned kindness. In this you shall strengthen yourself and 
render me my dewe. The best newe years guifte that I can geve 
you for this cominge year shall be, that in your greatest causes you 
heede well from what spirits the counsells that you will followe do 
come, and God send you his grace to make a trewe scantlin betwix 
what is pretended and ment. And judge a-rightly twixt what 
seems may be your best, and that must needs be in deede. So shall 


you never do ought that may indanger yourself with thought to do 
you good, nor wrong your best friend that means you but good and 
yet will not abyde a wronge. And for your own dominions, I wish 
you guide them so as no innovators mar the fasshion of your old 
governmente. Diseases there be in showe not dangerous, but in con- 
tinuance perillous. Thus will I end, with this request, that you 
[consider] the mind of the giver, not the meanesse of the guifte, 
which proceedeth from her that desireth of God a good grant to 
these my wishes. 

Your most affectionate sister and cousin, 


This gentleman, I assure you, hathe acquitted himself very faith- 
fully [and] discreetlye in his charge. 

No. LXIX. 



The king states a variety of objections to a patent sent him by queen 
Elizabeth in vindication of his honour from the foul accusation of 
Valentine Thomas, and craves a further declaration of his innocence. 

Madame and dearest sister, Since the returne of my seruante 
Foulis, I faunde my self uncessantlie prikked by the lawe of that 
honest freindshippe quhiche I beare unto you, to haisten unto you, 
hou soone my laiser micht any wayes permitte me, the treu pour- 
traite of my thochtis upon that ansoure to my most juste petitiones 
quhiche it pleased you, by the handis of [my] saide seruante, to re- 
turne unto me. 

The ground of my requeste was, to be freed of that, as untreu as 
uyle, imputation and calumnie, layd against me by so infamouse a 
uillaine, seduced thairto ather by his owin self-loue, seeking thairby 
the farthest-of thoch most detestable death, or ellis by my malicious 


thoch undeseruid haitteres. Not that I mcnt, or ncid it, to craue to 
be made clear of any suche treacherouse attempts, quhairof indeed 
I euer was most cleare, but that my effectual innocencie micht be 
maid knouin, quhiche nou maye in sum measure be obscurid by 
murmuring surmyses flouing from this filthie spring. But, as for 
the meanis for attaining to the same, I remitte you to youre owin 
memorie quhat choice and diuersitie of thaime I maid to be proponed 
unto you, and in ende relayed my cheifest suretie thairin upon 
youre owin deuyce, quhiche out of youre owin uisdome, tempered 
with youre kyndest loue touardis me, I looked ye woulde fynde out. 
But nou, quhen I haue rypelie considerit and weyed, in the iuste 
ballances of a reasonable and unpassionate judgement, the true force 
and pith of youre ansoure, I must plainly confesse, except I wolde 
faine with you, quhiche is the foulest erroure that in a mutual freind- 
ship can be comitted, that I cannot finde, in any pointe thairof, any 
thing neir to my iuste satisfaction. For, first, in your patent, the 
narration thairin declaires it to be onlie obtained by importunitie, and 
the conclusion thairof to be rather ane allouance of your owin goode 
conceipte that it hath pleased you to take of me, then any ac- 
knouledgement of my many good and honorable deserts at youre 
hande. And quhairas ye declare thairin, that ye oucht to glue ac- 
counte of any of your actiones to no mortall creature, I knou very 
well that it becummis none that enjoies suche places as we both doe, 
ather to giue accompte or be judgit by any, and thairfore, as I neuer 
thocht to craue the one, so think I neuer to submitte myself in the 
other. So that, quhairas my expectation uas, that by your patent 
ye sholde haue declairid, that, as by the lawis of all nations, the 
bare and single alledgeance of so infamouse and base a uillaine, cold 
bring foorthe no bleamishe to the honoure and fame of one of my 
ranke and calling, so had youre experience of my kynde and honest 
behauioure touardis you at all tymes, justlie preserued you from 
harbouring in youre hairtc the least iotte of suspicion of me, in such 
a cace ; quhairwith, as ye restit fullie persuadit within youreself, so 
wished ye all to quhose knbuledge that patent uolde cum, to rest in 
CAMD. soc. s 


that full assurance of my honourable innocence quhiche the goode 
lawis of all nations, and the proofe of my by-paste behauioure, wolde 
in all reason obtaine of thaime. I can, by the contrarie, collecte 
nothing of your patent, but, as the graunte theirof seemis to be 
thrauin out by importunitie, and not uillinglie obteained by good 
uill, so by the delaiting of the uertuouse merites of your owin 
inclination, and of youre manifolde benefites bestowid upon me, the 
substance thairof seeming rather to tende to the agrauating of my 
ingratitud, in kace I uaire guiltie, then to the clearing of my inno- 
cence, since nather your uertuouse inclination in judging others by 
the measure of youre owin qualities, nor yet youre owin knouledge of 
your good deserts touardis me, can carie any forther proofe then 
quhat of reason I should doe, but not quhat indeid I haue done ; 
otheruayes all uertuouse and innocent personnis uolde euer be as 
free from the pen-ill of ressauing as deserving any causeles iniuries. 

And next, quhairas I craued, that by some acte or statute, order 
micht be geuin for the cancelling and razing of any thing in his 
indytement or deposition that micht concerne me, that, as I assure 
myself, ye putt no doubt in your owin hairte of my innocence, so ye 
micht thairby remoue all occasions quhairby I micht be calumniated 
at any time hearafter, I haue onlie ressaued a coppie of his indyte- 
ment and a generall summe of his depositions ; a fauour quhiche by 
no law coulde be refused to [the] caitife himself at his leding out to 
the execution. And as for the omission of my name out of the indyte- 
ment, quiche notuithstanding containes the specialities of the alleadgit 
practises, and place quhaire the same was deuysed, quhiche is fullie 
relatiue to his depositions quhairin my name is plainelie mentionated, 
I can thinke it no greater grace then that my name is (for the faon) 
skraiped out of the texte but well retained in the glosse or comen- 
tarie. He is indyted for practising according to his owin confesion, 
and in the same confession, by quhiche means only this practise is 
reuealed, I ame plainlie named and accusid. 

And for ansoure to my last petition, quhairin I craued, that if my 
satisfaction could not presentlie be agreed upon, the persone of the 


catife micht at least be detained unexecuted quhill sum more sure 
and honorable waye of his tryall and my clearing micht be found out, 
ye haue only, into the middest of a priui letter written to your agent, 
maid him a generall promeise thairin, as long as ye shall finde me 
contineu in my goode behauioure touardis you. 

Thus farr haue I thocht goode treulie and honestlie to communi- 
cate my mynde unto you concerning your laite ansoure, quhiche I 
proteste is no uayes done for building up groundis of miscontente^ 
ment thairby, but only least ye should deceaue yourself, in thinking 
me, if I had remained sylent, satisfeid with your ansoure ; for as a 
prince, it becummis me not to faine, and as youre freind, I uaire 
faultie if I should dissemble. My requeste, then, is onlie that ye 
wolde patiently and grauelie consider upon the pramissis, and lete 
me by youre directt ansoure be resolued, if, in your judgement, you 
thinke my petitions reasonable; and since the grounde of my requeste 
is only that ye uolde help, not to cleare me of this false and filthie 
calumnie, but only to declaire me to be the thing I ame indeid, 
vouchsafe then, by some honorable meanis, to giue me onlie that 
quhiche of myself I fullie doe possesse, persuading to the worlde to 
beleue that quhich in your owin concience and knouledge ye are 
surelie persuadit of. Considder, it is craued by him quho hath euer 
bene your most constant freinde, quho neuer at any time did so 
much as once conceale anithing that micht import the harme of your 
persone or state, and that the graunting my requeste will tende 
as well to the honoure of the graunter as the crauer. And thus, 
crauing pardon for my faschouse long samnes, and rude plainnes, as 
proceiding from a honeste and frindlie hairt, I comitt you, madame 
and dearest sister, to [the] tuition of the Allmichtie. 

Your most louing and affectionate brother and cousin, 



No. LXX. 



Thanks to the queen for congratulations upon James's escape from a late 
treacherous practise answer to the charge of having prepared the 
queen's funeral also to the accusation of intending to sell his son to 
the pope. 

On the 5th August 1600, occurred that memorable incident in the life of James and 
in the history of Scotland, the outbreak of the Gowrie conspiracy. Elizabeth sent sir Henry 
Bruncker to congratulate James upon his escape, but she was excited against the Scottish 
monarch at the time, by the discovery that he had been in correspondence with Essex, and 
united with her congratulation an accusation that he had been accessory to the preparation 
of her funeral, " long," she continued, " ere, I suppose, their laboure shall be needful." 
In the same letter, or in the instructions to her ambassador, she also taunted the Scottish 
sovereign with his reported intention to " sell his son to the pope " a strange accusation, 
which had its origin in a proposal, certainly made by an agent of James, that prince Henry 
should be brought up in the Roman catholic faith. (Tytler's Scotland, ix. 394.) The 
following letter contains James's answer to these manifold accusations. 

Madame and dearest sister, As by youre cairfull and most suddaine 
dispatche of this honorable gentleman, youre familiare and trustie 
seniand, for congratuling with me for my laite unexpected escape 
from so treacherouse a practise, ye haue geuen a most euident and 
honorable proofe of the continuance of your cairfull and sinceare loue 
towardis me, so can I do no more but by penn to assure you of my 
thankefulnes, quhill it please God to offer sum occasion that by 
effectis I maye more uifely expresse it unto you. In this I can saye 
no more, but, as in this office of kyndnes touardis me, ye haue farre 
praueined all other kings my confederatis, so haue ye justlie aquyred 
the first place of loue in my hairt before thaime all. And that ye 
may haue the more maitter to praise God for my saiftie, I haue 
particular-lie, out of my owin mouth, acquainted youre ambassadoure 
with the quhole circumstances of that odiouse facte. 

And quhairas ye appeare to charge me with the prepairing un- 


tymouslie of your ftmerallis, I cannot aneuch uonder, that, notwith- 
standing both of the uprichtnes of my meaning, and that long since I 
haue oftentymes geuen you full satisfaction in that point, youre earis 
shoulde yett be so oppen to such as goes about, by all the meanis 
they can, to burie and abolishe, by the force of lyes and calumnies, 
that happie amitie standing betuixt us ; as appearis well by suche 
uyle and false reportis quhairwith I perseaue they doe daylie fill 
your earis. But as for purging me of all these surmyses, I will 
onlie repeate my former attestations of my euer upricht and honest 
course in all that concernid your person or state, meriting more faith 
then all thair knauishe pratling ; so wold I, on the other pairt, wishe 
you to be that farr acquainted with my disposition, that I neuer har- 
boured suche base thochtis as, for any respectis that can be imagined, 
to sell the smallest pairt of my cuntrey, muche lesse my sonne, to 
any pope or prince in the worlde. No ! I neuer thocht so baselie, as 
that ather myself, or my sonnis person, or education, shoulde be in 
the reuerence of any pope, king, or queen liuing. For, althoch I 
thanke God I be in friendship with all the christiane princes in 
Europe, yett my dealing with any of thaime shall, uith Goddis 
grace, be so honorable, as I shall neuer neid to be ashamed thairof. 
But, hauing particularlie made ansoure to youre ambassadour upon 
euerie particulaire heade of this false imputations, I remitte me to his 
report thairin, wishing at God that ye waire as farre upon all the 
secreate counsayles of my hairt towardis you as myself is. And 
thus, fearing to uearie you with my raggit scribling, I comitte you, 
madame and dearest sister, to the tuition of the Almichtie. 

Your most louing brother and cousin, 






The queen's anxiety to know what were the griefs which occasioned him 
to send the bearers to her as ambassadors- they have all been 
answered two years ago warns him against underhand dealing 
with her subjects a bird of the air will utter the matter to an honest 

James's anxiety in reference to the succession to the English throne increased with 
every year's increase of Elizabeth's age and infirmities. He omitted no opportunity of 
sending some of his principal servants to the English court rather as spies than ambassa- 
dors, and when excuses for embassies were long in coming he invented or imagined them 
rather than lose the advantages to be derived from the maturing of his prospective plans. 
The present embassy was one of the latter kind. The earl of Mar and the abbot of Kin- 
loss were the messengers the " well-chosen couple," as they are termed by Elizabeth in 
the following letter. The avowed objects of their mission may be gathered from the next 
succeeding letter; their private instructions may be read in Hailes's Secret Correspond- 
ence of Cecil, p. 9. Mr. Tytler has also fully detailed the whole circumstances in his 
History of Scotland, ix. 373. 

My good brother, At the first readinge of your letter, albeit I 
wonclred muche what springs your grieves might have of any of my 
actions, who knowes my self most clear of any just cause to breed 
you any annoy, yet I was well lightned of my marvayle when you 
dealt so kinglye with me, not to let them harbour in your brest, but 
were contented to send me so well a chosen couple, that might utter 
and receave what you meane, and what I should relate. And when 
my greedy will to knowe dyd sturre me, at first accesse, to requyre 
an ease with speed of such matters, I found by them, that the 
pryncypall causes were the self same in part that the lord of 
Kynlosse had two yeares past and more imparted to me, to whome, 
and to others your mynisters, I am sure I have given so good 
satisfaction in honor and reasone, as, if your other greater matters 
have not made them forgotten, yow your selfe will not deny them. 

But not willing in my letters to molest you with that wich they 
will not but tell you (as I hope), together with such true and 


guylelesse profession of my sincere affection to you as you shall never 
have just reason to dobt my clearnesse in your behalfe, yet this I 
must tell you, that as I marvayle much to haue suche a subject that 
wolde impart so great a cause to yow afore ever making me pry vy 
thereof, so doth my affectionat amytie to you clayme at your hands 
that my ignorance of subjects boldness be not augmented by your 
silence ; by whom you may be sure you shall never obtaine so muche 
good as my good dealing can aford you. 

Let not shades deceave you, wich may take away best substance 
from you, when they can turne but to dust or smoake. An 
upright demeanor beares ever more poyse than all disguysed shewes 
of good can doe. Remember, that a byrd of the ayre, if no other 
instrument, to an honest king shall stand in stead of many fayned 
practyses, to utter aught may any wyse touche hym. And so I 
leave my scrybles, with my best wyshes that you skane what works 
becometh best a king, and what in end will best avayle Mm. 
Your most loving sister, that longs to see 
you deale as kyndly as I meane, 





Official answer to the matters treated of by the Scottish ambassadors 
Essex's rebellion Valentine Thomas Eurds case Ashfield lands 
claimed by James. 

This is the official answer sent to James on the return of the earl of Mar and the abbot 
of Kinloss. Of the matters mentioned in it, the first is the rebellion unius diei, that of 
the earl of Essex. Some historians have been of opinion that James was deeply impli- 
cated in Essex's foolish scheme, and was to have been raised to the throne by its success. 
Mr. Tytler supposes that the mission of these gentlemen to Elizabeth was one of interces- 
sion for Essex. If so they defeated their object by their tardiness. They left Scotland 
with a suite of nearly forty persons about the middle of February, 1600-1. They reached 
London on the 6th March. They were admitted to their first interview with the 


queen on the 22nd March. Essex was executed on the 25th February. Sir William 
Eure and sir Edmund Ashfield were both imprisoned for holding secret communication 
with the king of Scotland upon the subject of the succession. The lands alluded to 
were those of Margaret countess of Lennox, James's paternal grandmother, who died on 
the 10th March, 1577-8. 

Right highe, &c. Being it hath ben at all tymes a great content- 
ment to us to receave from you demonstration of the contynuance or 
increase of your good will, you need not doubt but your kind letters 
presented by this personages of honour and integryty are so much 
the more gratefull. 

And where they have congratulated us from you [on] our happy pre- 
vention of the late treasonable attemptats, the suppressyon whereof, 
praised be God, fell out to be only opus unius diei, wee do accept in 
very good part that kind office from you, and requytt you with this 
good wyshe, that the lyke may either never befall you or at least be 
as easely past over ; that being utterly extinguished in twelve hours 
wich was in hatching dyverse years. 

It is also very wellcome to us, and at [all] tymes shalbe, that you, 
invyted as you wryte by our example and by.the obligation of true 
kindnesse, do use playnesse in opening unto us any thing that lyeth 
in your hart. But why at this tyme the same is used as a meane to 
obtaine the curing of some wound (as your letter doth insynuat), wee 
do not well understande. For, in the examination of all our actions 
towards yow, wee do not find that any thing hath passed from us 
that may be construed for a wounde, except the same language of 
playnesse, which yourself do well affirme to be an undisseverable 
companyon of true freindshippe, do change habytt when it cometh 
from us and not from others ; with which contradiction if we may 
knowe your mind to be posessed, and that our franke and reall 
dealling hath (out of your owne apprehencyon) strooken deeper than 
we entended, or bredd any other conceipt in your mynde then in his 
own nature the syncere and mutuall expressing of each others 
thoughts should doe betwene true freinds, wee will from henceforth 
be more reserved ; as being one who, nether in deed nor in worde, 
either have or meane to vyolate our former just and affectionate 


profession. But now to come to other particulars of your embassa- 
dors negotiations. We have gyven them an attentyve and pacyent 
hearing, not only because all persons recommended to us from you 
shall styll receave such measure, but also because we knowe them 
to be of more constant affection towards the common freindshippe of 
our kingdomes then others, who have not spared often for pryvat 
respect to runn many courses, whereby they haue adventured your 
honour and given advantage to our common adversaries. And yet 
we must thus playnly tell you, that they have not fayled to use 
playne and seryous dealings with us and with our counsell, in things 
wich, in their owne nature, wee thinke doth not well sort with the 
outward parte of their embassay ; having been so often and so justly 
answered, as were it not to confirme that they have not omited any 
part of their charge, we would not have troubled either you or our- 
selfs at this tyme with any repeticyon. 

For first, to the matter of Valentine Thomas. We have often 
sayed the same wich we have nowe againe made playne to them, 
that whatsoever hath ben forborne to be done against him hath ben 
meerely done by us in your favour, because wee would not styre 
anewe that matter wich nowe lyeth deadd, and cannot be revyved 
without some scandall howe unjust soever. Next, we must styll say, 
that what your owne ministers wyshe nowe to be done therein, for 
your further satisfaction, hath ben done in effect allready to your 
servant Fowles at his last departure. 

For Euers case, for whome your embassadors have also dealt, 
wee fynd that you are as subject as others are to wry reports ; for 
when he was sent for his owne governor knowes it wee had other 
cause that moved us ; though true it is when he was but accidentally 
demaunded howe he found you dysposed in the matter of the 
pledges (for which he sayd he went to speake with the lord of Rox- 
buroughe) he made such an impudent denyall, or rather an abjura- 
tion, of his ever seeing or speaking with you, as theruppon we deny 
not but we grewe jalous that he might have had some ill designe in 
his goeing, thoughe no way incoraged by you whatsoever. So as in 



this case wee apeale to your self, howe you wold have preceded 
yf the case had ben your owne, as nowe it is meerly ours. 

And thirdly, touching Ayshfeld. As we have don nothing in his 
case but what the soveraigne authorytie of all princes doth justefye, 
and the lawes of our border specyally provyde, that there be no 
passing or repassing of the subjects of either realme without lycence 
of the wardens, so doe wee think it strange that you do not better 
dycern of the merytt of persons who seecke accesse to you, then to 
esteme yourselfe in that respect interested in their good or evyll 
usage, who, out of their owne humour and busy natures, going be- 
yond the duty of subjects, seeke to shelter themselves against the 
danger of their owne crimes by making you a cause, and so a party 
to their disgraces; wich, for example sake, though for no other 
respect, all prynces-soveraigne ought to be wary to take uppon 
them, least in favouring the undutyfull doings of others subjects 
they open evyll wayes to their owne. As for his taking out of your 
contry, it was utterly without our pry vity, and done only by our 
governor of Barwycke to redeeme his owne eror; but being don, and 
the partie fallen into our hands, wee hadd no reason to omytt the 
occasion to chastyse so lewd a caytyffe. 

Lastly, touching your desire to have some lands where the title 
remaines yet undecided, we will speak shortly to you, that wee 
found that of all things most strange, consyddering howe well ye 
have dycerned our disposition therein heretofore, that any such de- 
maund shoulde be renewed, since your selfe cannot be ignorant that 
some consequences wich depende therupon hath made us forbare to 
dispose of it one way or other. All which considered, seeing you 
professe so clear a desyre to remove all scruples, wee hope to heare 
no more of any of this matters, which are so unworthy of our dis- 
putte, who have and do resolve to nourishe and performe all 
princely correspondency, which can be by nothing more desgraced 
then when our comon adversaryes shall see, that when newe causes 
rise not, old and by-passed scruples are revyved. 





Letter of recommendation of the duke of Lennox, who was visiting the 
court of England on his return from France to Scotland. 

The bearer of the following letter was Lodowick Stewart, duke of Lennox, son of Esme 
Stewart duke of Lennox, first cousin of the king and one of his early favourites. His 
present visit to England, at the moment of a meeting of the parliament in which it was 
thought some steps would be taken respecting the succession, was in that respect not at 
all agreeable to Elizabeth. The principal object of his mission was no doubt to watch 
over James's interests, and especially to communicate with the Roman catholics, and 
endeavour to predispose them in favour of his master's succession. 

My dearest sister, I must by these few lynes presume, rather in a 
homelie than princelie maner and uithout all ceremonis, to recom- 
inende the bearare heirof unto you, and as I haue allreadie great 
cause to thanke you for your so louing and readie graunt of a most 
fauourable pasport unto him, so doe I most hartelie praye you to lett 
him finde youre goode countenance, since the greatest earands he 
hath to cum that uaye, is to haue the honoure to kise youre hande. 
And althouch I did not doubte of your owin curtesie in this pointe, 
yett I doe assure myself it will not be the less gratiouse for my 
requeste. And since ye haue nou occasion to speake with him, being 
upon his returne from the dischargin of his comission in France, I 
shall be uerrie well contentid that ye examine him, in a secreate and 
familiar forme, of his proceadings thair, and quhat uas his direction, 
that ye maye finde by proofe, according to my promeise, that I shall 
neuer haue dealing in any pairte of the worlde quhiche maye in any 
sorte tende to youre prejudice ; but, by the contraire, shall euer be 
cairfull to procure the prosperous continuance of your suretie, and 
will, as farre as shall lye in my poueir, as I hoape shortly to giue 
youe some proofe, in some particulaires that my cousin, the bearare 
heirof, uill informe you in, quhairby my honestie, I hoape, shall the 


better appeare. And thus, with my hairtelie prayeris to the Allmichtie 
for your tuition, I uill put an ende to these my raggit lynes scribledd 
in haste. 

Your most louing and affectionate brother, 





Thanks for letters received by Foulis and the duke of Lennox, and for 
offers of service against the Spaniards in Ireland great praise of 
the duke of Lennox. 

My dear brother, Never were there yet prince nor meaner wight 
to whose gratefull turnes I did not correspond, in keeping them in 
memory to their avayle and my owne honor. So trust I that you 
will not doupt but that your last letters by Fowles and the duke are 
so acceptably taken as my thanks cannot be lacking for the same, 
but yelds them you in thankfull sort And albeit I suppose I shall 
not neede to trouble any of your subjects in my service, yet, 
according to your request, I shall use the liberty of your noble offer, 
if it shall be requisite. 

And whereas your faithfull and deare duke hath at large dys- 
coursed with me, as of his owne knowledge, what faithfull affection 
you beare me, and hath aded the leave he hath receaved from you 
to proffer himself for the parformer of my service in Ireland, with 
any such as may best please me under his charge, I tliinke my selfe 
greatly indebted unto you for your so tender care of my prosperitie, 
and have told him that I wold be lothe to venture his person into 
perillous service, since I see he is such one that you make so great 
a reckoning of, but that some of meaner quality, of whom there were 
lesse losse, might in that case be ventured. And sure, dere brother, 
in my judgment, for this short acquaintance that I have had of him, 


you do not prise with better cause any nere unto you, for I protest, 
without fayning or doubling, I never give cares to greater lawde 
then such as I have heard him pronounce of you, with humble 
desyre that I wold banishe from mynde any evill opinion or doupt 
of your sincerity to me. And because, thoughe I knowe it was but 
duty, yet wher such shewe appeares in myndfulj place I hold it 
worthy regard, and am not so wycked to conceale it from you, that 
you may thanke your self for such a choyse. And thus much shall 
suffice, for feare to molest your eyes with my scrybling, committing 
you to the enjoying of best thoughts and good consideration of your 
carefull frend, wich I suppose to be 

Your most affectionate sister, 


No. LXXV. 



TJianks for offers of men for the service of the queen in Ireland, and 
also for punishing persons who supplied the rebels in that country with 
provisions tidings of the destruction of the invaders hourly expected. 

The following letter relates to the great rebellion of Tyrone, who, aided by a body of 
Spanish auxiliaries, was able for a time to set at defiance the power of Elizabeth and the 
military skill of her deputy lord Mountjoy. James offered to send to Elizabeth's aid a 
body of his Highlanders; but it was reserved for a more glorious occasion, and a more 
worthy cause, to give England, for the first time, the benefit and the protection which she 
has since so often derived from the daring valour of those hardy mountaineers. 

That it pleased you, my deer brother, to sturr up my memory to 
consyder howe needfull speed is in so greate a cause as requyres a 
present service of your subjectts if any wee will have, and that you 
already make choice of some captains and hedds of such troupes as 
if I like I may use, surely I fynd myselfe greatly indebted unto you 
for such heedfull care of what might concerne my service, and thinke 


many thankes very shorte to aunswere such desert But that paper 
cannot includde, that my thankfull hart shall ever acnowledge to you ; 
not omytting the readynes that now you shewe to the fynding and 
punishing of such, as, contrary to your often promyses and their often 
commands, have furnished our traytours with their foode and all such 
things as might .fortify their rebellion. And although nowe, when 
it is very late, for having done their worst already, yet never can it 
be out of season to have them smart that so dishonored you and 
wronged us, for which we will not oinitt our thankfull ness, and 
takes it in kynd manner. And thoughe wee doe howerly expect 
some favorable wynde that will blowe to our ears some such tydings 
of their ruyne, that contrary to honor, conscience, or cause, hath thus 
outragiously assayled us, yet in meane while we have communicatted 
to your good sarvant Mr. Fowles particularly our mynde herein, 
tyll we can send you more, which with all speed wee meane to doe, 
when wee shall heare from thence. And tyll then, wee leave to 
trouble you with more lynes, but do remayne 

Your very affectionate sister, 

E. R. 




Further thanks for offers of assistance in Ireland rumours of a Spanish 
army destined for England " / notfiing fear though they came" 

My very good brother, Though matter I have longe to lengthen 
my letter, yet you must beare with fewe lynes, dryven thereto by an 
evill accydent of my arme, and yet my memorie shall never be short 
to kepe in mynde your ready kindnesse, wliich the offer of your 
subjects servyce made me knowe, together with the care and spede 
that [you shewed] therein, as also the good warning you gave me 


of a supposed army from Spaine for England ; wich though I no- 
thing feare though they came, as nothing doupting but their speede 
should be as shamefull 'to them as the precedent hath been ; yet my 
thanks for your care, together with your good courisell, not to 
neglect such a malice, bynding me to conceave that you wold be 
loathe that any disaster should arryve to her that yet (God be 
praysed) never tasted of any. And thus I end to trouble you 
longer, with mynde to byde 

Your affectionate sister, 





Particulars of James's communication with the ambassador and king 
of France respecting a proposed league of France, England and 
Scotland against Spain, with request for the advice of Elizabeth. 

I am a little doubtful as to the order in which this and the following letter should be 
placed. Calderwood says that the French ambassador alluded to arrived in Scotland 
about the end of July 1602. (yi. 158, Wodrow edition.) 

Madame, my dearest sister, I hadde not so long delayed my 
hande-wryte to haue witnessit my tliankfullnes, as well for your 
louing and kynde letter, as for youre fauorable and speedie dispatche 
of my seruant Ashton, if I had not stayed till I had first soundit the 
Frenshe ambassadouris mynde in that purpose quhairof I urote to 
you in my last. Quhomby I haue in deid receaued a letter of his 
maisteris owin hande, affirming and ratifying thairby all these parti- 
culaire promeises, and offers of freindshippe, quhiche he had mouit 
my ambassadoure to acquainte me with before ; and to this effecte 
his ambassadoure had freely promeised his maisteris assistance, ather 
unto me in speciall against the Spaniarde, in case Spaine shall happen 
to make inuasion upon my kingdome, or otheruayes to assiste you, 
quhairin he nothing doubtis of my concurrance, in case the said 


Spaniarde shall follow forthe his inuasion upon Yrelande, or any 
other of youre dominions ; using these wordis in conclusion, that all- 
thoch the king his maister uolde not directlie querrell with the king of 
Spaine, upon the discovery of these laite practises, but use him in the 
lyke fashion as he did him, yett uolde he not spaire to giue him a 
grounde to querrell with him, for assisting any of his freinds and 
confaderatis against him. 

As yett I haue done nothing, but harde all, and ame to beginne 
nou to uork heirin, pracysely according to your most graue and 
uyse aduyce geuin in youre last letter, and, as it shall succede, ye 
shall from tyme to tyme be aduertished ; praying you to richte me 
so farre in your reposing upon my confidence unto you, that, as in this, 
so uill I deale with no frende of youris in any other matter that can 
concerne you, without your aduyce ; and as for youre ennemies, I 
shall neuer haue any dealing with thaim at all, quhairin ye shall not 
be acquainted with the least iotte thairof. For I trust God hath riot 
so skaircely bestowid his graces upon me, as that I shoulde not be 
able to discerne betuixt the only waye that leads to my uell-doing 
and safetie, and the ineuitable gulfe of my shippeurakke ; as I haue 
uerrie lately geuen you some proofe, by that aduertishement of 
Spanishe intentions quhiche I informed youre agent to make you 
acquainted with ; quhiche I durst not reserue to be inserted in this 
letter since modica mora maye be daingerouse in maitters of suche 
moment, and thairfore my earnist desyre is, that quheneuir ye shall 
heare reportis of any dealing of myne, in quhatsumeuer sorte, with 
any of youre ennemies, ye shall judge thaime to be falsely and 
maliciously contrayued, excepte ye heare thaime uarrandit from my 
self, quho shall constantly remaine 

Your most louing and assurit brother and cousin, 





Gratification received from the queen's last letter excuses of the French 
ambassador for delay of his 'master's answer communication made 
to James by Francis Mowbray from the archduke and the king of 
Spain the queen is James's only oracle his gratitude because she 
will not have any dealing with the sister of persons who are regarded 
by him with indignation. 

The letter from Elizabeth alluded to in the beginning of the following is clearly that 
which is mentioned by Tytler, ix. 396, and there said to have been dated on the 4th July 
1 602. The lady alluded to in the postscript was probably Beatrice Ruthven, sister of the.earl 
of Gowrie and of Alexander Ruthven. She was one of queen Anne's maids of honour, 
but was banished on the occurrence of the Gowrie conspiracy. 

Madame, my dearest sister, Immediatlie after the wrytting of my 
laste unto you, I ressaued your letter, quhiche hath so pauchtid * my 
hairte with contentment, as nather my tongue nor my penne is able 
to expresse. That ye accepte in so goode pairt my honest intention 
I thinke myself more happie than if I hadde wonne the golden flece. 
I doe not wonder that the Frenche resident thaire hath nothing 
touchid that string that I wrote of unto you, since he that is heir hes 
neuer as yett ressaued, as he sayes, any ansoure from his maister to 
my proposition ; excussing himself that it was long before he coulde 
gett his pacquette transported by sea, for laike of pansinger shippes. 
Alluayes he puttis me still in full hoape that my aduyce will be 
uillinglie embraced by his maister. As euer it be, the ansoure shall 
no sooner cum to me, but it shall rinne post unto you ; and as for 
your seacretie, your long happie gouuerment hath given tuo great a 
proofe thairof to the worlde that I shoulde neide to make any doubte 
thairof, and for your prayer in the end of your letter, it is indeid the 
greatest proofe ye can giue me of the integritie of your affection to- 

* exhilarated. 


uardis me. I pray God that I maye haue no occasion to studdie upon 
the paraphrase of that texte. 

And nou I must not conceale from you, that presently before the 
wrytting of this letter, Francie Moubraye, for quhose sending with 
his pairtie unto me I render you most ynfinite and hartie thankis,* he 
did seacreatly send me wurde, the Archduike comandit him, in most 
priuat mainer, to giue me full assurance both of the king of Spaines 
freindshippe and of his ; and for proofe thairof, it uas by thaime put 
in my choice, quhither I wolde haue a direct ambassadoure, or a 
priuate man indirectlie, presentlie to repaire unto me, quho shoulde 
more particularlie confirme this message of his unto me, and bring 
me full assurance of thaire affection. To this I will make no ansoure 
quhill I heare from you, quho, I proteste to God, shall euer be my 
only oracle in all such caces. And thairfore, since it is my good for- 
tune to be tyed in straite freindshippe with so uyse a prince and 
trustie a freinde, I will hearafter, at all occasions, wryte in this sorte, 
pryuatelie, unto you, without the knouledge of any of my counsaill ; 
no, not my owin secretarie. The ansoure quhairof maye euer be 
safelie and seacreatlie conuoyed by youre owin agent, in quhose 
paquette I will also sende my letters, as I doe this. For if euer I 
runne a course with any prince liuing, quhairin ye shall not be my 
only oracle, I pray God to punishe me as a parjuride parricide. But 
noue I doe infinitlie comfort myselfe that ye haue the contrarie 
proofe and assurance of 

Your most louing brother and cousin, 


Youre honorable integritie and princely disposion in trew loue to- 
uardis me, hath shyned so brichtly in making your agent aquente 
me with youre resolution, not to haue any dealing with her quhose 
brothers are justlie noted with infamie and with my indignation, as, I 

* Francis Mowbray, a son of the laird of Barniebougle, was accused of a design to 
assassinate the king of Scotland. He was arrested in London and sent into Scotland by 
order of Elizabeth. He died of a fall in attempting to make his escape out of Edinburgh 


protest in Goddis presents, the admirable recorde thairof shall neuer 
weare out of my graitftill hairte. And as I shall euer accounte it the 
trew patterne of a princelie and heroicall mynde, as lykewayes of a 
most faithfull freinde, so shall I neuer spaire to straine all the faculties 
of my soule to giue you profe at eurie occasion of a faithfull corre- 




The king requests that a Scotsman, an offender against the border laws, 
seized by the English warden within the Scottish territories, may be 
delivered up to him, in order that he may be duly tried and punished 
if found guilty by due process of border law. 

Richt excellent richt heich and mightie princesse, our dearest 
sister and cousine, In oure hartyest maner we recommend us unto 
you. We shoulde be sorrie to importune at this tyme your wechtye 
occupations with a subject so unworthy e, both of your care and of 
our pen, wer it not that such small begynings do bread eftsoons 
no small enormities betuixt the marches, and that your wardone, the 
lord Scroope, quho lies already acquented you with the circumstances 
of the fact, hath put that matter in your hands. It is, of treuth, the 
fellowe apprehendit is oure borne subject, tain be your officiaris 
direction within the ground of Scotland, albeit his opposite* did alwayes 
offer to make him answerable, at quhatsumeuer day of trewf he 
should appoint to that effect. His failzie, both in this and in the 
other two befoir, as it hath bene more in the forme nor in the sub- 
stance, (and thairin his zeale to the repeasing of fugitiues and lym- 
meries ouer-reuled his regard of the guide ordure prescrivit in sae 
casis by the treaties,) so hes it left sum sparkis of grudge and clashis 

* That is, the opposite warden of the Scottish marches. 

f Day of truce, in which border complaints were determined by the wardens. 


betuixt him and his opposite, to the encouragement of theves and 
male factors at that hand, to quhom thair former guide intelligence 
wes no small terrour. For the remouing quhairof we do requeist 
you most effectuusly, that be your warrand to your said officiare, the 
criminale deteanit be him may be put in our handis, to underly his 
tryell and dew punisment, as he prouis giltye ; quilk as it is, in 
treuth, oure ferme intention to do with him, so will we pray you to 
be persuadit that his delyuerie is craued be us for no releiff nor be- 
nefite to such a villane, bott only that justice may be ministrate upon 
him be our auctoritie, and thareby your said officiares intention may 
be effected, and he relevit of the grudge and rankor quhilk micht 
remaine in the hartis of his opposites affected to the partie, gif, being 
taiken in such a forme, he should be forcit to undergo the judgement 
of his lyfe before the author of his taking, and be execute by his 
auctoritie ; quilk we haue wellit your seruand, George Nicolsoun, to 
schaw you more amplie by his lettre. And for the eschewing of the 
lyke ocasion in tyme cuming, it will please you to giue command to 
your said warden, quhen any such cace shall ocure, to conforme him 
thairin to the ordour prescriuit be the treate, in sending his com- 
plaint to his opposite, quhom we haue willet to giue him upricht 
correspondence in all gude offices, to the furtherance of justice and 
redresse. Quhairin, gif thare be any failzie on his pairt, lett your 
warden be assuritt so soone as we shall know it be his letters, 
oure present officiar shall ay tlier do him reasson, or shall giue owir his 
charge to another that will more willinglie perforate it And thus, 
expecting heirin your fauorable resolution, richt excellent richt heich 
and michtie princesse, our dearest sister and cousine, we comit you 
in the protection of the Almightie God. From Dumfreis, the 12. of 
October, 1602. 

Your most louing and affectionatte brother and cousin, 



No. LXXX. 



The queen is informed of proposals made by James to the French am- 
bassador in reference to the suggested league of France, England, and 
Scotland against Spain and, also, of underhand proposals made to 
him by Spain for a marriage between prince Henry and the infanta. 

I presume the allusion in the postscript of this letter is to the one just printed, and there- 
fore assign it the place in which it is inserted. There is no doubt that it was written 
about the autumn of 1602. James, in anticipation of the speedy close of Elizabeth's 
reign, was endeavouring to strengthen himself by foreign alliances, the nature of which has 
been a little mistaken by our best historians. They are fully explained in the present and 
some subsequent letters. The French ambassador who is here alluded to was the baron 
de Tours. 

Madame my dearest sister, Hauing laitely enterid more deeply 
with the Frenche ambassadoure, in that porpose quhairof I wrote 
unto you in my last, I haue thocht goode, according to my promeise, 
to make you acquainted with the particulars thairof. Taking occa- 
sion of the franke offers of freindshippe, quhiche, in his maisteris 
name, at his first audience, he maid unto me, I prayed him to repre- 
sente to the king his maisters judgement, the boundles and insatiable 
ambition of Spaine, and hou it appeared that God, in his deuyne 
prouidence, had ordained us three I meane the princes of this yle 
joined with his maister to be a brasen wall, or bullwork, for resist- 
ing to his presumption. I wished him to consider, hou the Span- 
niarde did alyke greedily gaape for your dominions and the king his 
maisters ; and if so it came to passe, God knowis hou well I wolde 
be fitted with suche a neichboure. Finally, I did remember him of 
his owin wordis allreadye utterid in his maisteris name unto me, 
quhiche was, that althoch his maistter wolde not breake peace with 
Spaine for his owin particulaire, notwithstanding of his laite disco- 
uerie of the Spanishe practises, yett he wolde not spaire to doe it for 
assistance of his freindlie neibouris against his injuste inuasions ; and 


thairfore, I wished him to laye these things before his maisteris uyse 
consideration, showing him planly that I thocht the onlie sure reme- 
die for preuenting of these euills uolde be, that, as of olde thaire was 
a ligue offensiue and defensiue betuixt France and my croune 
against Englande, that so thaire shoulde one nou be maid betuixt us 
three against Spaine. And if the king his maister did lyke of this 
course, my opinion was, that by his ambassadoure it shoulde be pro- 
poned unto you, mouing you to take me in for a thridde marrow in 
that gham ; * otherwayes, for my part, I wolde no waye medle thairin. 
He faithfully promeised to aduertishe the king his maister fully heirof, 
and did generally assure me, that his maister wold willinglye em- 
brace that aduyce. And thairfore, if the Frenche ambassadour 
thaire breake any thing of that purpose unto you, I haue sufficiently 
foruarned you. I remitte it to youre wisdome hou to ansoure him, 
and to make me acquainted withe your mynde in quhat sorte you 
will haue me to proceede further herin. 

And now, hauing this occasion of uryting, I uill not also omitte 
to informe you, that I ame uerrie lately aduertished of great offers 
that are to be sent unto me from the king of Spaine, and in speciall, 
the marriage of his dauhter with my oldest sonn, and dyuerse other 
greate conditions ; joyned with this threatning, that, if I shall not 
accepte thaime, he is allreaddie sure of a peace with Englande, 
quhiche, upon my refusall, he will prosecute, hauing allready all the 
counsall of Englande at his deuotion. But, as I deeplie mistruste 
his sirene songs, so maye ye be sure that hou soone that message 
shall be brocht unto me, ye shall with all dilligence be faithfully ad- 
uertished thairof, praying you euer so to assure youreself of me, as 
of him quho, in all his actions, shall constantlie remaine, 

Youre most louing and assurit brother and cousin, 


I wolde be loathe to tronbbill your earis with so unworthye a 

* That is, a third companion, or partner, in that game. 


subject as my other leter dois containe, if it uaire not for the dis- 
quyetness that I know it will breede upon the borders ; my intention 
not being any wayes for spairing of suche villains, but only that 
euery goode turne maye be richtlie done, and by thaime quhome to 
it doth properlie belong. 




Substance of a communication received from the king of France, upon 
which James wished to have the queen's advice account also of sir 
James Lindsays mission from the pope to James to warn him of an 
English conspiracy against his life, and to request him to send prince 
Henry to Rome to be educated James's reception of Lindsay. 

Madame and dearest sister, Upon the returne of the ansoure to 
the Frenche ambassadoure from the king his maister, I haue taken 
occasion, for the performance of my promeises in my letter by Aston, 
to poste this present unto you. The substance of the said kings an- 
soure is, that he doth so uillingly embrace, and so fully lyke, that 
ouuerture quhiche I maid to his ambassadoure, as he is onlie sorrie 
that he was not the first propounder thairof to me ; that he shall 
presentlie employe his ambassadoure resident with you to propounde 
that maitter unto you ; that he also thinkes it expedient that the 
states of the Low Cuntreys be joyned with us three in tliis league ; 
and that, as I haue so prouidently putte the maitter it self in heade, 
so wolde he be glaidde to haue, as quicklie as micht be, my aduice, 
quhat particular articles and groundis shoulde be contained in the 
saide league. I am nou thairfore to expecte your ansoure, in quhat 
sorte I shall further proceide heirin, accounting myself infinitelie 
happie to haue so noble, so uyse, and so faithfull a freinde, by quhose 
counsail I maye and euer shall be directed in all my most importante 


I haue, lykeuayes, thocht goode heirby to informe you, that sir 
James Lindesaye is lately arriued heir, uith directions, as he sayeth, 
from the pope unto me. His quhole message consisteth of tuo 
pointes. The first is, to foreuarne me of a practise against my life 
intendit by England, these are his uerrie termes, quhiche he said he 
wolde not conceale from me, in regairde of the honorable report he 
hath made* of my goode inclination to pietie and justice, thoch I be 
not of his profession in religion. The other point is, a requeste, that 
I wolde sende my oldest sonne ather to Rome, or any other pairt be- 
yonde seas, quhaire he micht be catholikilie noorished, and that he 
uolde furnishe him a sufficient guarde to attende upon his person. 
He also told me, that he hade a letter from the pope unto me to the 
same effect, but, by the occasion of ane aduertishement that before 
his arryuall uas sent unto me by one of my owin subjectis out of 
Italy, discouering me the quhole contentis of his directions, I thocht 

goode to him, by calling him privelie unto me, and laying 

to his chairge, hou he durst prasume to carrie a letre and message 
from suche a persone unto me, that uas his souueraine, excepte that 
he had first acquainted me thairwith, and obtained my permission ; 
since I coulde not, without the manifest uounding both of my con- 
science and honoure, ather ressaue or ansoure his lettirs quhose tyttels 
and dignitie was directlie contrarie to my professions and resoluid 
knouledge. His ansoure uas, that he perceaued suche affection in 
the pope touardis me, and that the purpose was of suche things as 
concerned my safetie, as he was thairby mouid to accepte this mes- 
sage, and thairupon he told me all the praceiding purpose. My an- 
soure uas, that I uolde receaue no message nor letre from him, since 
he was my subject, and had undertaken it without my permission. 
And thus haue I left him, farre short of his expectation ; praying you 
hairtelie to excuse my being thus trubbilsum unto you, quhairunto 
I ame forced, for performance of my promeise that I wolde neuer 
conceale from you any message that should come to me from any of 

* ? he hath made to him. 


your ennemies, but shall euer so behaue myself, in any thing that 
maye concerne you, as becummis 

Your most louing and affectionate brother and cousin, 





James sends the bearer for his pension what communication he had 
received from the king of France the pope intends to send an am- 
bassador to James with an offer of friendship upon certain conditions. 

Madame, my dearest sister, Hauing the occasion to sende this 
bearare my seruant unto you, for that ordinarie receipte quhiche, out 
of your kyndest loue, it hath pleased you to bestowe upon me, I haue 
thocht goode not to omitt to continew in my happelie begunne course, 
by aduertishing you quhat is farther proceidit betuixt me and the 
Frenche ambassadoure, since the wryting of my last unto you. 
Within a shorte space after my returne from the bordouries, the said 
ambassadoure repaired unto me with new directions from the king 
his maister; the effecte of all consisting in two pointes. First, the 
sayde king did sende me his hartiest and kindest thankes for that 
louing message of congratulation that I sent him by the lorde Hoome, 
with full assurance of the continuance of his constant freindshipp 
unto me ; and next, for a proofe of his unfained loue unto me, he 
thocht goode to foruarne me that the pope uas of intention to send a 
commission unto me by the handis of the bishop of [Vaison],* thair- 
by to make offer unto me of his goode will upon tuo conditions; 
first, that I wolde graunt libertie of conscience to all the catholiques 
in my kingdome, and next, that I wolde sende my oldest sonne to 
Rome, thaire to be brocht up and instructed ; but the ambassadoure 
said, that, since his maister knew so well quhat it was to be a king, 

* " Drummond, a Scotsman by birth," Tytler'a Scotland, ix. 393. 


he nothing cloubtid of my refusall to suche propositions, and that 
thairfore his maister did aduyce me to giue as genttill refusall as 
micht be to that comission, and that he shoulde so worke as, notwith- 
standing my refusall, I shoulde incurre no prejudice. My ansoure 
was, that I most hartelie thanked his maister for his louing and plain 
dealing, and that I thocht myself most happie that had so greate a 
monarcke to be both a counselloure and ane agent for me. I haue 
also since the hearing of this messsage ressaued aduertishement from 
one of my subjectis in France, of the same comission intendit by the 
pope, and withall, he sent me the arguments quhiche in that comis- 
sion wolde be usid unto me, for persuading me to graunte the said 
libertie of concience, quhiche I doe lykewayes heirwithall send unto 
you. But, as I doe greatlie wonder of thaire uanitie that can thinke 
that I carrie so corrupted eares as can patientlie heare of so un- 
reasonable demandis, so doe I fullie comitte me in all this to youre 
wisdome, for upon youre aduyce only will I ground my behauioure, 
in kaice any suche message come unto me. And thus, not doubting 
but ye will fauourablie heare, and with conuenient speede dispatch, 
this bearare, I end with renewing the assurance of the unfained 
loue of 

Youre most louing and obleished brother and cousin, 





My very good brother, Hit pleaseth me not a little that my true 
intents without gloses or guiles are by you so gratefully taken, for I 
am nothing of the vile disposition of such as while their neighbours 
house is likely to be a-fyre, will not only not help but not affoord them 
water to quench the same. Yf any such you have hard of toward 
me, God grant he remember it not to well for them. For the arch- 


duke, alas ! poore mail he wisheth every body lyke himself except his 
bonds, wich, without his brothers help, he will soone repent his signory. 

I suppose that considering whose apert enemy the king of Spaine 
is, you will not neglect so much your own honor to the world 
(though you had no particular love to me) as to permitt his em- 
bassador in your land that so causelesly persecutes such a princess 
as never harmed him. Yea, such a one as, if his deceassid father had 
bene rightly informed, did better merite at his hand than any prince 
on erth ever did to other. For where hath there bene an example 
that any one king hath ever denyed so fair a present as the whole 
seventene provinces of the Lowe Countries ? Yea, who not only wold 
have denyed them, but sent a douzen gentlemen to warne him of 
their slyding from him, with offer of keeping them from the neere 
neighbors hands, and sent treasure to paye the shaking townes from 
laps. Deserved I such a recompence as many a complot both for 
my lyfe and kingdom ? Ought I not to defend and bereve him of 
such weapon as might inuaye myselfe ? He will say, I help Zeland 
and Holand from his hands. No. Yf eyther his father or himself 
wold observe such oth as the emperour Charles obliged himself, and 
so in sequele his sonne, I wold not [have] delt with others territoryes. 
But they holde those by such covenants, as not observing, by their owne 
grauntes they are no longer bound unto them. But though all this 
were not unknowen to me, yet I cast such right reasons over my 
shoulder, and regarded their good, and have never defended them in 
a wicked quarrell. And had he not mixt that goverment, contrary 
to his owne laws, with the rule of Spannyards, all this had not 

Now for the warning the French sent you of Vesons ambasade to 
you. Methinks the king, your good brother, hath given you a good 
caveat that, being a king, he supposeth by that measure that you 
wold deny such offers ; and, since needes you will have my councell, 
I can hardly beleeve that, being warned, your owne subjects shall be 
suffered to com into your relme from such a place to such intent 
Such a prelate, if he came, should be taught a better lesson than 


playe so presumptious and bolde a part afore he knew your good 
lyking thereof, wich, as I hope, is farr from your intent ; so will his 
coming verify to much good Mr. Simples asseverations at Rome, 
of wich you have ere now bene warned ynough. Thus you see how 
to fulfill your trust imposed in me (wich to infringe I never mynde), 
I have sincerely made patent my sinceritie, and, though not fraught 
with much wisdome, yet stuffed with greate good will. I hope yow 
will beare with my molestyng you to long with my skratching 
hand, as proceding from a hart that shall be ever filled with the 
sure aftection of 

Your loving and frendly sistar, 






Congratulations and thanks on the conclusion of a league between Eng- 
land and Scotland. 

The league to which this letter refers bears date 5th July 1586, and is printed in 
Rymer's Foedera, xv. 803. 

My triall of your syncere affection, my dear brother, hi the con- 
cluding of our league, hath ben both pleasing to my expectacion and 
necessary for your government ; for both you have linked such a 
one to you as but your self canne ever separate, and you have made 
a quintessence of sum humours, which, if they had lyen lurking, you 
woold parchance have nourished them as mete instruments to sever 
your kingdoms quiet and your good frends love. But since you 
have made so good a tast how sower liquor they hold, and how 
grosly they woold handle so fine a peice a work as kings amitye, 
and how they woold have wrested every string to their owne note, 
remembring sum other tune more, paraventure, than any song of 
yours, I trust it shall serve for a memorial that such do no harme if 
they help not 

I have no woords to expres the many thanks my brest yeldeth you, 
for your redy parforming of our covenant, wich by Gods grace shall 
ever remayn inviolated for my part, and doubt not of your just 


requitall. Also I must not forget the last kynd letter you writt me, 
putting to my choice of tyme and persons for our bordars mattars, of 
which I cannot presently make aunswer untill the return of my 
commissioners, after whose arryvall I shall not faile to signifie my 
further request and determination therein, thinking my self infinitely 
beholding to your frank dealing in this behalf, and do promise that 
my chief contention with you shall be, hearafter, who may convince 
other in all honorable kyndnes, as knoweth the Lord God, whome 
ever I besech preserve you with long reign and healthfull life. 
Your most assured and 

affectionate sister and cousin, 





Defeat of the armada reliance the Spaniards placed in Scottish help 
the queen's thankfulness to James for his intention to have resisted 
their landing she cautions him against being misled into making 
unreasonable demands upon her. 

Elizabeth's letters during the armada period partook of the universal excitement. In 
the following, as in all her other letters written at that time, she is more plain-spoken and 
direct than usual. The Roman catholic earls who had invited the Spaniards to land in 
Scotland were at this time admitted more and more to James's confidence. The master of 
Glammis was dismissed from his charge of captain of the king's guard, and the office was 
bestowed upon the earl of Huntly. These circumstances naturally excited in the mind of 
P>lizabeth the suspicion which is obvious in the latter part of the following letter. 

Albeit, my deer brother, the mighty malice and huge armyes of 
my hatefull enemyes and causeless foes hath apparently spitt out 
their venimous poison and mortall hate, yet, throgh Gods goodnes, 
our power so weakned their pride [and] cut of their nombers at the 
first, that they ran away to their further overthrowe. And so mightly 
hath our God wrought for our innocency, that places of their greatest 


trust hath tumid to prosecute them most, yea, every place hath 
servid the turne to ruine their hope, destroy themselves, and take 
them in the snare they laide for our feet. His bless id name be ever 
magnified therefore, and graunt me to be humbly thankfull, though 
never hable to requite the lest part of such unmeasurable goodness ! 

Among the rest of their succours, I suppose your realme to have 
bene supposid not to have bene least willing, nor the most unready, 
to aunswer their trust, wich I doubte not had answeryd their ex- 
pectation, if your naturall affection towarde me and regarde of our 
strayte amitie had not impeached their landing ; wich though they 
never profered, yet I have cause, by your promise, vow, and assu- 
rance, to acknowledge your full intent to have resisted such attempt, 
and doe take your readines in no less kinde parte than if the acte had 
bene put in execution; and if (wich God forbyd) any dangerous 
course should be attempted against your quyet estate, I will shew 
myself most ready, by all meanes and force, to resist and overthrow 
the same, so as my requitall shall ever acquite your kingly over- 

And if any shall (to increase your good favor towards them) instill 
in your eares to demand such unfitt and unseasonable demands at 
my hands as may not be fittly graunted, for som waighty reasons, and 
yet suppose, that for feare you fall to other course, I may be in- 
duced to yeld therto, lett me use you in this as right amitie requireth, 
wich consisteth chiefly in plaine and sincer dealing. Right deer brother, 
be assured, that you cannot, nor ever will, more speadily demand 
things honorable and secure than my entire good affection shall ever 
be most ready to corresponde you; but, if any shall be required that 
my present estate shall not permitt as sure for me, than abuse not 
your judgment with so contrarious thoughts, for never shall dread of 
any mans behaviour cause me doo ought that may esbrandill * the seat 
that so wel is settled. Thereof judge not, that I will not ever deserve 
your amitie as that you need seeke your owne ruine by following 
others wills, who seek your wrak if you leave your surest friend. 

* Shake or disquiet, elranler. 


And thus, with trust that my true good will shall be rightly skanned, 
I end to trouble you with this long skrybling, with my million of 
thanks for your most frendly and kynde offers, wich never shall out 
of my memory ; as knowith the Lord, who bless you with all felicity 
and many years of raigne. 




The queen intercedes with James on behalf of the Low Countries, whom 
he had threatened with Utters of mark for the recovery of debts due to 
his subjects. 

My deere care of your honor and good estate, my deer brother, 
permitts me not to overslip any cause wherein I supose any demi- 
nution to befall to eyther, and, driven by so good a ground, it will 
not dislike you (I make me sure) if I write you my mynd in such 
[a] case. And this it is. The states of the Lowe Countreys, whome 
you are not ignorant I have and doo ayde, to keep them in breth 
from the extreame ruine that is ment them, finde themselves sorely 
aggrevid, that, at this tyme of their greate neede, to releeve their 
own danger, their country es loss, and their continuall well-ny 
importable charges, you, that profess the true religion, and protest 
such inward affection to advance that cause, can find in your hart so 
great neglect of them and their wants, as at this season, so out of 
season for them, to make a clayme for debts owed to your subjects ; 
wich when I hard, I could no less doo than to make it knowen unto you, 
my dear brother, how sorry I was to heare of such a proposition, togi- 
ther with the manace of letters of mart if the spedelyer it were not 
answeryd. Consider, I beseech you, of your dealings in this sorte ; how 
you shall wound your frend, glad your foes, and wrong yourself. Who 
will belive that you pass of [that] religion, that suffers the professors 


to perish ? Yea, who will suppose that your amitie is sownde to me, 
whan you affect my party ? Nay, I pray God the enemy, who carith 
for neyther of us, make not a skorne of our frendship, as thinking it 
full faynte and feeble. I meane not herby that it is not reason for a 
king to right his subjects of wrong, and to procure, in tyme con- 
venyent, such seemly remedies as may fit his place and help his 
vassals loss. But the most* of this consiste in the tyme, and for the 
parsons. For, as you shall perceave, a great somme of this great 
value is not the debt but of other countryes and captains, whome 
they rule not, according as at length my servant hath charge to tell 
you, with my most effectuous desyre and earnest request that you 
more regarde the cause and tyme than any private subjects suite, 
and that it might please you, all these things well wayed, to surcease 
any preparation that might make shew to annoye them. Albeit I 
doubte no whitt but they might defend themselves against a greater 
force; yett, let no man saye that by your hand they be afflicted 
that have miserie ynough. And thus I end, with my most affec- 
tionate petition that these lynes be considered according to the hail; 
that wrytes them, who never ceasith to pray for your best, as God is 




The queen remonstrates with James for his conduct towards the Roman 

catholic earls. 

This letter will be found to be sufficiently illustrated by the remarks introductory to 

My deere brother, I am dryvin, through the greatness of my care 

* So in the MS. The sense seems to require " worst." The word " for " in the latter 
part of the sentence is probably an interpolation. 



for your sure estate, to complaine to your self of your self, wonder- 
ing not a little what injurious planet against my neerest neighbours 
raignith with such blindness as suffrith them not to forsee their hang- 
ing perill and most imminent danger. Shall I excuse them, [that] 
they know it not ? I am to true a witness that ignorance cannot ex- 
cuse, as having bene a most neer spy to finde out those trecheryes. 
Must I say they dare not ? Far be it from kingly magnanimity to 
harbrough in their breast so unseemely a gest. Have 1 no excuse 
to serve them for payment ? Well, than, most I wayle that I can- 
not mend, and if ther befall them mishap, I am not guilty of such 
disastre. Yet can I not desist, though I might be discouraged, to 
beseech you in Gods name not to overslip such happy occasions as it 
hath pleased God to revele unto you. For if, whan they be at your 
side, you will not make yourself a proffit of their wrack, how will 
you catch them whan they are aloose from you ? Let to late ex- 
amples serve you for patern, how dishonourable it is to prolong to 
doo by right, that [which] after they are driven to doo by extre- 
mity. Yea, and perchance, as being taught to take heede, they will 
shunn the place of danger, and so your danger worse than the others. 
It had bene for [your] honor and surety neuer to have touched, 
than so slightly to keep them, in a skorne, in durance ; to be ho- 
nored with your presence, with all kyndnes, and soone after to be 
extolid to your deerest chamber. Good Lord ! What uncouth and 
never-hard [-of] trade is this ? You must pardon my plaine dealing, for 
if my love ware not greater than my cause, as you treate it, I should 
content my self to see them wrackt with dishonor that contemns 
all loving warnings and sister-lyke counsell. I pray God there be 
left you time (you have delt so untimely) to be able to apprehend 
and touche such as dares boldly, throwgh your suffrance, attempte 
any thing they list, to bring you and your land to the slavery of 
such as neuer yet spared their own. I know not how gracious they 
will be to you and your realme. When they get footing they will 
suffer few feete but their owne. Awake, therfore, deer brother, - 
out of your long slomber, and deall like a king who will ever raigne 


alone in his owne. If they found you stoute, you should not lack 
that wold followe you, and leave rotten posts. 

I marvell at the store you make of the Spanyards, being the 
spoyles of my wrack. You writt me word not one should byde 
with you, and now they must attend for more company. I am sorry 
to see how small regard you have of so great a cause. I may 
clayme by treaty that should not be; but I hope, without such 
claiine, seeing your home practises, you will quickly ryd your relme 
of them with speede, wich I doe expect for your owne sake, not the 
least for myne, of whome you may make sur reckening, if you aban- 
don not yourself to be protected by [me] for ever. And thus I end by 
axing a right interpretation of my plaine and sincere meaning, and 
wish ever to you as to my self, as knowith the Lord, who ever 
I beseech to preserve you with long and happie days. 16 Mar. 



19lH MAY 1589. COPY IN THOMPSON MS. P. 80. 

The king, having been successful over the rebellious Roman catholic 
nobles, is warned not to trust them again, but to finish their treason 
with justice. 

This letter is assigned in the margin of our MS. to the 19th May 1589, and perhaps 
that is the correct date, although it seems equally applicable to the circumstances of 1594. 
In both years there was a rebellion of the Roman catholic earls. In the former year they 
mustered in great force at " the brig of Dee," but fled without striking a blow, on the 
approach of the king. In the latter, they defeated the king's forces in the battle of Glen- 
livat, but were suppressed by the king himself, their strongholds destroyed, and many of 
their followers executed. The king's immediate reconciliation with the leaders of the re- 
bellion, which is to be inferred from the following letter, points to 1589; but other 
passages, which dwell upon the repetition cf the offence, the king's personal danger, and 
his valour, seem more properly applicable to 1594. 

Since your late to true experyence, niy deer brother, hath, evin 


with the victoryes of your rebbels, made sufficient acquittance of the 
slaunder fowlly made of my most true and unfayned advertisments, 
so am I replenished with joy, that my deer eares have accomplished 
my behooffull desires for your most needfull warnings, and give my 
lowliest thanks to the hygh God, for his glorious goodness shynid 
upon you with his favorable eyes; hoping that you will shunne 
now, having this advantage, the future perrill that such attempts 
may breede you, and that you will feare, through such negligence, 
to tempt to farr the wrath of Him that gave you this upper hand. 
For if pitie of the parties that never remembred you, whose former 
offences were not so old that the memorie thereof needes be forgot- 
ten, nether yet the new falling, evin, to the same offence, wich 
promesith small hope of ever amends, may serve, I will not per- 
suade myself that a meaner than a king will ever tollerate so oft, so 
dangerous, and opprobrius contempts. Small honor, wisdome, or for- 
sight will the world throughout supose in that prince that will for 
fond lyking or armfull remors perill his owne bayne. God forbid 
you should lose the reputation of a king-like rule, that, so unlike a 
king, would work your 'own reproche. For they be actions, not 
words, wich paynts out kings truly in their coulours. And there 
be so many vewars of their facts that their disorders permitts no 
shades, nor will abide excuses. I beseech you, therefore, despise 
not the work that God hath fraimd, nor yet conteinne the counsell 
that your assured geve you, and neglect not the many warnings 
that those mens own demerites have layde before you, nor forgett 
the danger that your own parson hath narrowly escaped, but finish 
this treason with justice, wich no man may reproch, but every crea- 
ture laude. 

Take me, my deere brother, aright, as that creature that ever 
shunneth to take bloud, but of those that might and shold have be- 
trayed the innocent, and, in such cases, the less evill is to be chosen. 
Of malice I speake nothing, God is witness, but for your best is all 
my care, and so I hope you will rightly interprete all my textes, 
wich all shall ever tende to your most safety and true honor. Let 


me figurate afore your eyes what should be the danger if tliis princi- 
palls should be skantid of their right. They are the same men. 
They live and love you not, with whom they have practised. 
What should rule you to trust their curtesy so farr as to leave it 
ready in their hands to take you, as they ment, make you another 
princes prisoner and captive, subiect your realme, and translate it to 
the owner of another country ? If the hope of all these dangers 
might not lye upon the trust of so often and so late offenders, you 
might perhaps be seduced by dangerouse advice to more * them and 
ruine yourself. But when you behold this table, I feare not so 
perrillous an act. And thus I send my foolish but loving discourse, 
receaving much contentment that your valour amiddes most danger 
incouraged your faithfull, daunted your traytors, and joyed your 




The queen urges James to give attention to t/ie affairs of his kingdom 
reliance of the Spaniards upon Scottish help. 

The date assigned above to this letter is that given to it in the margin of our MS. If 
it be accurate, the letter was written to James before his return from Denmark. He and 
his queen sailed from Cronenburgh on the 21st April and landed at Leith on the 1st May 

My deere brother, I finde an old English proverb truly veryned, 
that " a feast long looked is good when it comith," by your late re- 
porte that this gentleman hath brought me. For, after many 
monithes no knowledge of your good estate, I perceave the finishing 
of your late nupciall feaste, and of your safe escape from eminent 
dangers, for wich I have bene so carefull, as a great burden of 
heavy thoughts are thereby unladen from my brest, and yelde to 

* Perhaps a mistake of the transcriber for " spare." 


God the thanks, and not to any your indevour, who tempted (I 
think) to much His goodness in adventuring his mercy. I cannot 
but render you a million of thanks, that, though it were long first, 
yet at length you right me so much as to suppose of my content to 
heare of your safety. And as to touching your home causes, I as- 
sure you they neede much a kings eye, and are to greate slenderly 
to be governid. Yf you wold trust true warnings, you would have 
kept your subjects, yea your greatest, in better awe and more feare 
than they be. For Gods sake, and your own surety, looke better to 
your kingdom than you have don. Boldnes will make to many 
rulars, if no kings ; nimia familiaritas general contemptum. You may 
belive me, for experience, though not to trust me for my witt. And 
judge rightly of me, that as I bare none of yours malice, so can I 
not endure that their bold attempts shall shake your state, or trouble 
your neighbours. Ther are not yet three days past, since I in- 
tercepted a note that was sent concerning the surety that the 
Spaniard had of frendes in your contry, and that your out iles were 
assured to have succour from your inlande lords, and both to joyne 
with the foreners ayde. Yf you suppose that these advertisments 
are inventions and no truthe, I vowe unto you, on my knowledge, 
you are in an extreme error, and am afrayd, if you shorten not such 
woork, they will spyne you such a thred as will marr the fashon of 
your dominion. I have imparted something of this matter to this 
gentleman, as allso aunswere to those twoo points that concerne both 
lege * and unity, and, as you see I have remembred more your affaires 
than myne owne, so I trust you will think that I yeld my self 
obliged unto you that have such a care for such things as doo 
concern us both. So I comitt you, my deere brother, to Gods 
sefe tuition, who ever guide you to doo that is best for your 

* League. 


No. XC. 



The queen explains to James what has passed between her and an am- 
bassador resident in London respecting a baron who is with James 
although of the feminine sex, the queen can never endure affronte if 
aught be in her of value, it is that she can keep her own counsel and 
that of her friends. 

Baron Borough was " with James," as we have seen, in 1593, and baron Zouche in 
1594, but I cannot fix this letter as having reference to either of them. 

My deer brother, I suppose you will not conceave an evill impression 
of my judgment, nor my affection to you so small, as that I shold so 
long have refrayned my hand from such gratefull acceptance of so kind 
a letter as your last did shewe me, were it not that I shold disfornish 
myne of answere of that wich you required to knowe. For, though 
I have well noted the sondry tymes that this resident ambassador 
hath had my audience, in wich many kindness [es] have pased in 
wonted sort, yet nothing more was said but that the baron with you 
hath not, nor ever shall, have other commission than to remember 
you, for your owne wele, to committ nothing that might displease 
me, but warne you to beleeve that it is your only surety to relye of 
mee ; and, of the other matter, not one word I heard. Nowe, for 
your good advice you gave him, I never heard more necessarie 
counsell for him, if he have grace to followe it ; but he hath to much 
about him to be capable of such advice. But, as I told his am- 
bassador, I sawe he wold make me to vaine glorious to have the fame 
alone of resisting his bold attempts. For I did vowe, that, though I 
were of the feminyne sexe, I cold never endure such affronts as of 
late he hath done many. For my shallow braine wold not fadome 
so deep as to consider so much of my people that I left my selfe out 
of the reckoning, but I shold thinke that I shold make both them 
and me contemned if my ennemyes should see I cold beare so much. 
The king is so used with my fond speeches that he will looke of the 


experience of my love, and lett my follyes go. Thus you see, my 
good brother, that I am of this religion, qui vadit plane, vadit sane. 
For your part, you have played it in this matter so wisely, and with 
such good caution, that not I alone, who findes my selfe indebted to 
you for your kindenes, but your selfe might by good reason can * your 
selfe thanke for using so good a methode with your well beloved. 
And remember that, for silence, you made not your worst choyce 
of mee, that never yet uttered worde that you desired might be 
reserved, and of that assure you, for, if ought be in mee of value, 
that is not the lest, that I can bothe keep mine owne counsell and 
my frends, and in recompence, if ought best worth, that I can paye 
you with, accompt this prayer in cheefest degree, that I desyr that 
all yours that best ought do carry a sound and unspotted faith unto 
you, not seeking more their owne than yours. 

This is my text, as for paraphrases I can make none, and ende this 
scribling with my hartie thankes and best wishes to you, from 
Your most affectionat sister and cousin. 

No. XCI. 



The queen defends her conduct towards James, and complains bitterly of 
his lethargic inattention to his kingdom aho of his misrepresenta- 
tions of her conduct made to foreign princes. 

I believe this letter to have been written in 1595, on the occasion of the coolness 
between Elizabeth and James alluded to in the introduction to letter No. LVIII., but 
not being quite certain I have preferred placing it in the appendix. The letter is a noble 
vendication of the queen's general line of policy towards James, and will be found well 
worthy of attention. 

My deer brother, May it agree with my deserts that what hath 
bene should either be so forgotten as hit be not acknowledged, or so 
neglected as if ought were forslowen that meete were for the season ? 

* So in the MS. The sense seems to require " claim " or " challenge," or some 
synonymous word. 


Was it my guilt, or your error, that your rebells, when I knewe 
they were such, had so stronge hold in your favoure as manie a 
monneth past yow were pleased to counte them but yours [in 
dearest] sort. Yea, when they were full neere you, they must not 
bee seen, but so dandle [d] as best merite could scarce crave more. 
What needed an armie to pursue such as might so soone be had ? 
Whie put you your person to suche a laborious voiage when many a 
day afore you might with less paynes and more honour have had 
them ? But who was then in deepe lethargic, that gave so long a 
breath to so ivell a cause, and brede a caused doubt, no suspected lack, 
but to plaine an oversight ? And must I, for all my warnings, for 
all my presents, for all my watchfull howerlie care, be so well re- 
warded as one that either brake vowe or overslipt matter ? For the 
first, I never knew you at other neede then that your will made you, 
and so that turne might easelie be borne w r ith lesse then that I sent 
you. I neglect your causes ! would God you cured as well your 
disseased state as I have narrowlie watched to see it preserved. 
That manie monneth hath past since my letters visited you not, lay 
not the burden on the shoulders that deserved it not, but remember 
what courage was given to proceed further, when yet the thanks are 
to be given for that was last bestowed. 

And well it were if that were all. I irke that my pen should 
write the rest. Suppose you that so long a raigne as mine hath so 
fewe frends, or want so narrowe intelligence, as that complaints and 
moans made to forraine estates, of straight dealings made by such as 
ought most have helped you, could be kept secret from my know- 
ledge ? But if you should be asked, what you would have done 
more then pursue them to their confines, I think you would have 
aunswered them at leasure, to make them suppose more than could 
be sayd. Nowe, deare brother, thinke with yourself. What 
meaneth this ? To get a newe, or keepe the olde ? I am more 
sorrie that by my example they may have cause to doubt your trewe 
measure to them, when better and firmer have had so evell requital!. 
There is no kinge, nor potentate, to whom, I thanke God, I neede 

CAMD. soc. z 


veld account of my actions, and yet so sincere they shall ever be as 
they shall ever passe current with honour amids all there censures, 
and will disdaine that any have the precedence of both my woords 
and actions, of wich even themselves have geven me so good testi- 
monie, that I beleave your perswations came too late to make them 
believe the contrarie. 

Judge nowe, with me, whether my silence have had just ground, 
and whether any of my ranke, if I had used them so, would have 
forgotten so unseeming a part. And yet, for all this, if I may per- 
ceave you to regreat such a traitment, and to assure to binde such 
one to me as you affirme you shall, be sure that if any your 
traitors with their combined faction shall any way assaile you, you 
shall finde me awake, as having no drowsie humor when your affairs 
neede speede assisstance. And wold not have you doubt, that I 
trust more at your ennemies hands but the worst they can, and most 
they may. If you had beleeved it as well, your lords had not bene 
in place for ayde, nor out of your hands to treate as you liste. 
With my assured affection to your person and for your good, I end, 
commiting you to God's safest tuition. 

Your affectionate sister, 





An anxious and amorous letter, expressing anxiety for an acknowledge- 
ment of a poem sent ly James to tlie queen, as " ab incerto auihore," 
and sending a sonnet inclosed begging also that the queen will trust 
the present messenger. 

I am unable to fix the date of this curious letter, nor have I been able to find a 
copy of the sonnet alluded to. I should conjecture the letter to have been written very 
late in the reign of Elizabeth. 

Madame and dearest sister, Notwithstanding of my instant writting 


ane letter unto you, yet could I not satisfie my unrestfull and longing 
spreit, except be writting of this feu lynes, quhilk, albeit thay do not 
satisfie it, yet thay do stay the unrest thairof, quhill the ansour is re- 
turning of this present. Madame, I did send you befoire* 
Sensine, dame Cinthia hes oft'reneuid hir hornis, and innumerable 
tymes soupit with hir sister Thetis, and the berare thairof returnit, and 
yet uoyde of ansoure. I doubt not ye haue red, hou Cupidis dart is 
fyry callid because of the suddaine insnairing and restles burning 
thairafter. Quhat can I ellis judge, but that ather ye had not re- 
ceaued it, except the bearare returned with the contrary report, or 
ellis that ye judge it not to be of me, because it is incerto authore ; 
for quhilk cause I haue insert my name to the end of this sonnet heir 
inclosit. Yet, one uay arn I glaid of the ansouris keiping up, be- 
cause I hoipe nou for ane maire full, after the reeding also of thir 
presentis, and heiring this bearar dilaite this purpose mair at large, 
according to my secreit thochtis ; for ye knau deid lettiris cannot 
ansoure na questionis ; thairfore, I most pray you, hou unappeirant 
so euer the purpois be, to trust him in it, as ueill as yif I myself spak 
it unto you, face be face, quhilk I uald wish I micht, sen it is 
specially in any maner only for that purpose that I haue send him. 
Thus, not doubting of your courtesie in this farr, I committ you, 
madame and dearest sister, to Goddis holy protection, the day and 
dait as in the uther letter. 

Your mair louing and aftectionatt 

brother and cousin then (I feir) yet ye beleue, 


* A blank in the MS. 





The queen is grieved that Janies has no one about him through whom lie 
can sound to the bottom the recent conspiracy against his life she 
holds no man so dear that he should not make his last gasp for such 
an intent the accused shall be attached if lie return into England 
slie cannot think the lords guilty of any treasonable design the 
wickedness of the time makes kings mad the queerfs cholerick humour 
she has sent a gentleman to the king who is very wise and faithful 
honest has never beguiled the poorest vassal with a broken word, 
and hopes she shall not live to use such iniquity with one of Jameses 

I am unable to fix the date of this letter to my own satisfaction. The French address was 
not used by Elizabeth in any of the previous letters after 1586. If written before that year, 
it may relate to circumstances connected with the Raid of Ruthven, or with some of the 
plots of the banished lords during the ascendancy of Arran. If written after 1586, it 
probably relates to one of Bothwell's mad attempts. 

My deare brother, It grives not a little my careful mynde of your 
safety, that you shuld want any one person wherby you might sound 
to the botome so great a peril as aperes by your ambassador was 
practised against your owrie life. For this assure yourselfe, that I 
hold no man so deare as he shuld not make his last gaspe that I 
knewe had euer suche intent, if it wer but that you appartaine [unto] 
me so nerely in bloud, besides the lieu of king you hold ; and of this 
doubt not, but al the menes shal be found that possible may attache 
him if he make his retourne into this land. And for the lords, I 
cannot see that the shal be found coulpable of so inorme a crime yf 
ether othes or reason may gouverne my iugement, sins more bound 
to any other succedar the cannot be ; and some of them, if the had 
had so treasoble thoght, might or now haue executed it, hauinge 
than in ther handes your person; but al I leue to furder trial, as 
she that mynds to kipe them under garde to answer furdar profe. 


I hope you wol lay to my charge no tbrgetftilnes that I haue re- 
tarded a spetial gentleman to visite you on my behalfe, but rather 
impute it to the wickednes of this time, that makes kinges this yere 
mad, some in hauinge to muche pacience, and myselfe, possessinge a 
cholerique humor, in expecting what might be the but of thes 
dessains ; and if I coulde haue found a sphinx to haue expounded 
ther ridel, I had not failed to send you this bearar long agone, for I 
haue not so smal a parspectiue in my neighbors actions, but I haue 
foresene some wicked euent to folowe a careles gouvernement. 
And now that thos bodings haue not begiled me, I haue thoght ex- 
pedient that youe shuld not be ignorant of my sincere and plain 
mening in thes causes ; bothe how I take them, and how I mynde to 
kipe my owne dores from my ennemis malice ; and so do wische 
that our solide amitie may overthawrt thes develische machines.* 
This gentilman is very wise and faithful honest. I beseche you 
fauor him with the hiring f of suche charge as from me he hathe re- 
ceaved, and make as sure accompt of me, as of whom you recken 
your surest trust. I never yet begiled the powrest vassal with a 
broken worde. I shal not Hue, I hope, to use suche iniquitie with 
one of your estat. And thus I leue to molest you longar, with my 
infinite prayers for your longe prosperitie to many a yere untold ; 
and so, right deare brother, I commit you to the living God. 
Your most assured loving sistar and cousin, 


A mounsieur mon bon frere et cousin 

le roy d'Escosse. 

* So in MS. for machinations. "f- i. e. hearing. 




The general faithlessness of the times causes the queen to rejoice the more 
at James's last dispatch these latter days of the world are too weak 
to retain bodies sound enough to carry good minds caution against 
the false advisers by whom James was surrounded praise of his 

This letter was written at a time when James was exposed to the false counsels of the 
Spanish party, but I have not been able to fix its date with any certainty. The original is 
very much defaced by time and rough usage. 

Right deare brother, I had thoght that this wreached faitheles time, 
in wiche the subiects haue license to depriue bothe life and land from 
princis rule, had yelded no cornar for my delyght, but by your last 
despeche, I find that therein my winning * hathe somewhat begiled my 
thoghtes, and makes me see that God meneth not to make you 
blind amonge some of your felowes, who willingly let slip the raines 
of ther reason to the wyl of ther sedicious rebelz ; but I perceiue 
that his grace, who I trust wyl neuer leaue you, hathe inclined your 
hart to hate the ground-work of suche mischifs, and bent you to 
take the better part, and so, that you be sure of my fast and firme 
good wyl, that haue made good profe thereof not many dayes past, 
and mind so to continue, with more increase than any litel diminu- 
tion. My pen may not with equal balance countervaile the thankes 
that my heart yeldes you, for your g[reat] and large offers of al the 
sendee you have to help me withal, as also, in particular, not regard- 
ing spotted bloud, in respect of myne untainted, wiche shal neuer haue 
any impurenis in your behalf. These lattar dayes of the world are 
to weke to retaine so sound bodies as may cary good minds, but 
rather al inclined to what may be worst thoght and wickedlest done. 
It is more than time that we that mean not to folowe a false banner, 
nor to make one in a wicked crowd, shuld so strengthen ourselfis and 
fast joining the knot of our frendeship, as they that haue wil may 

* whining. 


liaue no might to harm, and that the face of our enemies may turne 
the backe of ther attemps, and leaue to them no hope to receiue 
aught els than shame, as ther malice is witnes. You shall find 
in me al readenes to do al that may serue this tourn, and thogh I 
knowe ther lacketh no zizania amonge your corne, nor lurking 
intelligencers of your actions, nor wants no fine perswaders undar 
coulor of your greatnis to wrest you to imbrace the serpentz that 
shal sting you, yet I beleave your worde, a[nd] feare no others hate, 
with the opinion that being wise, and used to many humours, you 
wyl haue skil not to look what the be but what the say, and not 
to suppose that wicked folkes can be made true counselars, nor that 
they shal euer prospier that lean to rotten aides, whos marischals haue 
more mynding of hors-hokes than of company. The firmist ground, 
therefor, is fittest for your trust, and, in frindeship Ciceroes rule, 
that the have traitted and be assured measure. 

This is all for the present I meane to treble you with, saving to re- 
quest you accept my most affectionat thankes for the zeal your em- 
bassador shewed me, by your offers by captain Brewes that you 
would make me. I assure you this shal never fal to ground but be 
imploied upon a grateful prince. I mus[t not] leave out the praises 
that I think deue to your ambassadors merite. If you had bin present 
you could have wisched him to use your affayres in no earnestar, no 
more faithful sort. I assure you he hath desarued your fauor for 
the traic in your great trust the lords as mu hate as of 

yours his negotiating I of his spetiall a . I beseech 

you let him [have your] fauor therefore. [I commend] you, my dere 
[brother], to the fruition of the [Almyghty], who [ever have you in 
his keeping. 

Your assured loving systar and cousin, 


A mon tres bon frere et cousin 
le roy d'Escose. 




TJie queen has heard that some Scottish lords set up Roman Catholicism, 
and pretend that they have the king's leave it is said that James 
feigns with others, and lets these people proceed until they acquire such 
power that he may allege that they compel him to tolerate them. 

This letter refers to a period of James's reign when he was winking at the pro- 
ceedings of the catholic lords, but I have not been able to determine its exact date. The 
conjunction of Rome and Rheims seems to point to about the year 1580. The mention of 
the latter place limits the date between 1578, when the seminary priests were expelled 
from Douay, and 1593, when they returned thither. 

I here, even now, suche newes as for your sake, more than my 
none, I rue. Shal the enuious of our frendeship at Rome, Remes, and 
elz wher, vant of the veritie of ther long profesie so far furthe as 
at ani instant the audacitie of some of your lordz be so far advansed 
to infringe your late edictz with ther bold example, to set up an 
other religion than your owne in your realme, and say the haue your 
leue therfor ? I pray God you looke not through your fingars at 
suche attemps, or eles litel hold may be taken to your profession. 
Therfor I pray you let your correction with spede be sufficient ad- 
uocat for your clernis in this action, and stop the tongues of suche 
as say you ar surely thers, and do but fain with otKers, and letz al 
run to that scope that you might aleage that compelled you 
did it. Right deare brother, you see how [I] am sturred, whan 
ought I see that might appaule your honor, or bringe in question 
your constancy. I pray God assist you with his spirit, that no false 
perswations, undar coular of your good, do not take hold to peril 
your estat by suche as care more for others than you. Thus the 
Lord euer kepe you from al insouerentie. 

Your assured loving systar and cousin, 


To my deerest brother and cousin the king of Scotts. 


ALEXANDER, Robert, 14, 15, 16, 17. 
Angus, earl of, 2, 4, 9, 22, 71, 88, 95, 96. 
Argyll, earl of, 108. 
Armstrong, William, of Kinmont, 114, 

Arran, James Stewart, earl of, x. xii. 6, 

7, 10, 11, 14, 18, 19, 22, 23, 172. 
Ashby, William, 49, 62. 
Ashfield, sir Edmund, 135, 136, 138. 
Ashton, Roger, iii. 70, 82, 143, 151. 
Babington's conspiracy, xiii. 37, 38. 
Bedford, Francis earl of, 18. 
Bellenden, sir Lewis, 14. 
Berwick, 46, 68, 121. 

governor of, 138. 

Boleyn, Mary, 23. 

Borough, Thomas lord, iii. xviii. 79, 80, 

Bothwell, earl of, 35, 69, 75, 79, 8286, 

8890, 99, 100, 103, 104, 106, 172. 
Bowes, Robert, iii. xviii. 2, 7, 66, 67, 73, 

74, 75, 77, 86, 93, 94, 121. 
sir William, 121, 123, t&. 124, ib. 

Bruce, Edward, abbot of Kinloss, 100, 

107, 123, 124, 134, 135. 
Bruncker, sir Henry, 132. 
Burghley, lord, xi. 34, 42, 61. 
Carlisle, 114, 120. 
Carmichael, sir John, 63. 
Cary, sir George, 1, 2. 

Robert, x. 45, 46. 

Katharine, 23. 


Cary, William, 23. 

Cbateauneuf, 42. 

Colvill, laird of Wemyss, 100, 108, 109. 

Colville, John, 6, 89. 

Craig, right hon. J. G. vii. 

Crichton, William, 96. 

Clunie, 81. 

Croft, sir Archer Denman, xxii. 

Cronenburgh, 165. 

Darnley, Henry, 34, 35. 

Davison, William, 4, 5, 9. 

Douglas, Archibald, xiii. 34, 35, 38, 39, 
40, 41. 

Dumfries, 148. 

Dunfermline, 15, 119. 

Edinburgh, 28, 51, 52, 103. 

Elizabeth, sends sir George Cary to James 
on the occurrence of the Raid of Ruth- 
ven, 1 ; styled la bonne femme avec le 
chapeau rouge, 7 ; refuses to deliver up 
Mar and Angus, 9 ; requests James to 
ascertain privately what the master of 
Gray knows respecting a plot against 
her, 10 13; urges James to candid 
dealing with her, 17, 27; her anger at 
the death of lord Russell, 19, 26, 27; 
her care for James's personal safety, 23 ; 
wishes for a league with Scotland, 27, 
157; sends Randolph to conclude one, 
28 ; declines to sign an " instrument** 
to secure James an annuity, 29 33; 
intercedes for Archibald Douglas, 34 ; 
letters about Babington and queen 
2 A 



Mary, 37 51 ; about the armada, 52, 
158; about James's marriage, 55, 61, 
165; her wrongs against Spain, 57, 
155; requests James to look well to 
the puritans, 63; thanks James for 
delivering up O'Rourke, 64 ; urges him 
to activity against the catholic earls, 
and Bothwell, 7079, 8386, 90, 98, 
103, 108, 1615 ; her letter of 
credence for lord Borough, 79; thanks 
James for his answer to Westmorland, 
81; letters respecting Buccleuch, 68, 
114 117; mediates between James 
and the kirk, 119; her anger at James's 
appeal to foreign countries respecting 
the succession, 121; letters respecting 
Valentine Thomas, 123, 127, 134, 135; 
praises the duke of Lennox, 140; 
thanks James for offers of assistance in 
Ireland, 141143; her last letter, 154; 
defence of her Scottish policy, 168; 
letters of uncertain dates, 172, 174, 
176; her fondness for nicknames, xi. 

Elliot, William, 98. 

Errol, earl of, 61, 71, 95, 96. 

Essex, earl of, 135, 136. 

Eure, sir William, 135, 136, 137. 

Evelyn, John, vi. vii. 

Falkirk, 22. 

Falkland, 7, 16, 90, 112, 119. 

Fenelon, La Mothe, 4. 

Forster, sir John, 18. 

Foulis, David, 140, 142. 

Frederick II. of Denmark, death of, 59. 

Glammis, master of, 1, 22, 158. 

Glenlivat, battle of, 108, 163. 

Gordon, James, 96. 

Gowrie conspiracy, xviii. 132, 145. 

earl of, 1, 7, 9. 

Gray, master of, xi. 10, 11, 12, 13, 42, 
44, 108, 109. 

Greenwich, 10, 37, 75. 

Halliwell, J. O. i. 

Henry, prince, 132, 149, 151. 

Herries, George, 88. 

Holyrood house, 5, 6, 62, 69, 98, 108. 

Houson, 15. 

Hudson, James, 32. 

Hume, sir George, 46. 

Hunsdon, Henry Gary lord, 47, 48, 49, 

Huntly, earl of, xiv. 53, 57, 61, 71, 77, 
86, 89, 95, 96, 158. 

James VI. his interview with sir George 
Gary after the Raid of Ruthven, 2; his 
secret assurance to Fenelon, 6; his 
emancipation from the Ruthven lords, 
7; requests Mar and Angus may be 
delivered up to him, 9; his satisfaction 
with sir Edward Wotton, 14; regret 
for the death of lord Russell, 18, 20 ; 
his private addition to the league 
between England and Scotland, 21; 
his conduct after the recovery of power 
by the protestant lords, 22, 24; wishes 
Elizabeth to sign an " instrument, " 
guaranteeing the payment of an allow- 
ance to him, xii. 29 34 ; his reception 
of Archibald Douglas, 34 ; his conduct 
respecting Babington's conspiracy, and 
the death of his mother, xiii. xix. 37 
51; his letters respecting the armada, 
51 55; respecting his marriage, 55 
60; his conduct towards the catholic 
earls, 61; delivers up O'Rourke, 64; 
his annoyance by Bothwell, 75, 85; 
refuses aid to the earl of Westmorland, 
81 ; his defence of his lenient conduct 
towards the catholic earls, 86, 95; is 
compelled to take the field against 
them, 108,110; his conduct respecting 
the rescue of Kinmont Willie, xv. 114 ; 
applies to foreign courts to befriend 
him in reference to the succession to 
England, 121 125; his letters respect- 
ing the slander of Valentine Thomas, 



125131, 137; his thanks for con- 
gratulations on escape from the Gowrie 
conspiracy, 132; letter of recommend- 
ation of Duke of Lennox, 139; offers 
of assistance in Ireland, 140142; pro- 
poses a league against Spain, 143 
151; his dealing with the pope, 149 
156; sends sonnets to Elizabeth, 170. 
Jonston, 15. 

Keith, sir William, 24, 25, 26, 42. 
Kelso, 22, 
Ker, George, 71. 

sir Thomas, of Fernihurst, 18, 19, 

31, 39, 40. 

Kinmont Willie, xv. 114, 120. 
Knolles, sir Francis. 23. 

William, 23. 

Knox, John, 6. 
Lauderdale, see Maitland. 
Leith, 165. 

Lennox, Esme Stewart, duke of, x. 1, 2, 
7, 139. 

Lodowick Stewart, duke of, 

xviii. 139, 140. 

Margaret, countess of, 136. 

Leycester, earl of, 25, 26, 54. 
Lindsay, sir James, 151, 152. 
Linlithgow, 25, 26. 
Lochmaben, castle of, 47. 
Maitland, Charles, second earl of Lauder- 
dale, vi. vii. 

John, first lord, chancellor of 

Scotland, iv. vi. xiv. 

John, duke of Lauderdale, iv. v. 

John, first viscount Lauderdale, 

iv. v. vi. 

Richard, vi. vii. ; third earl of 

Lauderdale, vii. 

sir Richard, of Lethington and 

Thirlestane, iii. iv. vi. 
Makgill, David, 87. 
Mar, earl of, 1, 9, 22, 134, 135. 
March, earl of, 7. 

Mary, queen, xiii. xix. 37 49 

Maxwell, lord, 15. 

Melven, master of, 46. 

Melvill, sir Robert, 42, 44, 83, 88, 91. 

Menainville, De, 5, 6. 

Morgan, 11, 12. 

Morton, regent, 2, 61. 

Mountjoy, lord, 141. 

Mowbray, Francis, 145, 146. 

Murray, earl of, 77. 

Newbottle, lord, 71. 

Nicholson, George, 148. 

Oaksey, i. xxii. 

Ochiltree, the " good " lord, 6. 

CTRourke, Brien, xviii. 64,65, 100, 102, 

Parma, prince of, 61. 

Parry, Thomas, 11, 12. 

Pepys, Samuel, v. vi. 

Philip II. xiv. 

Poole, ix. 

Randolph, secretary, 26, 28, 29, 30, 31, 
33, 34, 35. 

Reidswire, Raid of the, xii. 

Richmond, 51, 67. 

Rowan, Red, 114. 

Russell, Francis lord, xii. 18, 20, 24, 26, 
27, 29, 31, 40. 

Ruthven, Beatrice, 145. 

Raid of, x 1, 4, 172. 

Ryder, Mr. vii. viii. 

rev. Edward, i. v. viii. xxii. 

St. Andrew's, 7, 9, 19. 

Scott, sir Walter, of Buccleuch, 68, 114, 
118, 120. 

Scroop, lord, 15. 

Sidney, sir Philip, 54. 

sir Robert, 53, 54. 

Simple, Mr. 156. 

Stafford, sir Edward, 42. 

William, 42. 

Stewart, Colonel William, 4, 5, 6, 7. 

Margaret, 6. 

Stirling, 21, 22, 86. 



Thirlestane, iii. 93. 

Thomas, Valentine, xvi. 125, 127, 128, 

135, 137. 
Thompson, captain Peter, ix. 

sir Peter, i. viii. ix. 

Tours, De, baron, 149. 

Tousie, Robert, 68. 

Tyrone's rebellion, 141. 

Tytler's History of Scotland, references 

to, xv. xviii. 2, 6, 9, 32, 33, 34, 35 

46, 47, 61, 63, 69, 77, 87, 95, 88, 100, 

123, 125, 132, 134, 153. 
Vaison, Drummond, bishop of, 153. 

Walsingham, secretary, xi. 25, 34, 51. 
Warrender, sir George, 46, 77. 
Wemyss, laird of, 61, 62. 
Westmorland, Charles Neville, earl of, 

xviii. 20, 66, 81. 
Westminster, 80. 
Windsor castle, 4, 94. 
Worcester, earl of, 64. 
Wotton, sir Edward, xi. 11, 14, 16, 18, 

23, 33. 
Zouche, Edward lord, of Haryngworth, 

100, 167. 

J. B. Nichols and Son, Printers, 25, Parliament Street, Westminster. 





AT a General Meeting of the Camden Society held at the Freemasons' 
Tavern, Great Queen Street, Lincoln's Inn Fields, on Wednesday the 
2nd of May, 1849, 


His Lordship having opened the business of the Meeting, 

The Secretary read the Report of the Council agreed upon at their 
meeting of the 18th April last, whereupon it was 

Resolved, That the said Report be received and adopted, and that 
the Thanks of the Society be given to the Director and Council for their 

The Thanks of the Society were also voted to the Editors of the 
Society's publications for the past year ; to Sir Charles Young, Garter 
King of Arms, to the Reverend Lambert B. Larking ; and to the Local 

The Secretary then read the Report of the Auditors agreed upon at 
their Meeting of the 28th April last, whereupon it was 

Resolved, That the said Report be received and adopted, and that the 
Thanks of the Society be given to the Auditors for their trouble. 

The Thanks of the Society having then been voted to the Treasurer, 


The Meeting proceeded to the election of Officers, when 

The Right Hon. Lord BRAYBROOKE, F.S.A. 
was elected PRESIDENT of the Society ; and 



JOHN BRUCE, Esq. Treas. S.A. 





Sir HENRY ELLIS, K.H., F.R.S., Sec. S.A. 







were elected as the COUNCIL ; and 


GEORGE L. CRAIK, Esq. and 

EDWARD Foss, Esq. F.S.A. 
were elected AUDITORS of the Society for the ensuing year. 

Thanks were then voted to the Secretary ; and to Lord BRAYBROOKE, 
for the interest he had always taken in the welfare of the Society, and for 
his able conduct in the Chair. 


AT a Meeting of the COUNCIL of the Camden Society held at No. 25, 
Parliament Street, Westminster, on Wednesday the 9th May, 1849, 

The Rt. Hon. Lord BRAYBROOKE, the President, in the Chair; 

THOMAS AMYOT, Esq. was elected Director ; JOHN PAYNE COLLIER, 
Esq. Treasurer; and WILLIAM J. THOMS, Esq. Secretary, for the Year 
next ensuing. 




ELECTED 2nd MAY, 1848. 

THE COUNCIL of the Camden Society, elected on the 2nd of May, 
1848, feel it necessary to repeat the announcement of their predecessors, 
that, "like every similar Institution, the Camden Society has suffered 
some diminution in its ranks from the operation of public causes." But 
they would express their confidence that those causes are now passing 
over, and that it will not be long before the Society shall have regained 
its early number of Members. Several Societies have been obliged to 
yield to the circumstances of the times, and others will probably follow, 
but the number of Members of the Camden Society is still (again to use 
the words of the last Report) " amply sufficient to maintain the Society 
in its course of usefulness, and to prove the wide interest still felt in the 
objects for which the Society was instituted." 

In full confidence of the stability of the Society the Treasurer has 
followed the precedent of former years, and invested a sum paid in lieu of 
annual payments, which has raised the Society's Stock from 900 14*. 9d, 
to 911 Us. 

The Council have added to the List of Local Secretaries the name of 
JOHN BAILEY LANGHORNE, Esq. who has kindly undertaken to dis- 
charge the duties of that office for Richmond, Yorkshire, and its neigh- 
bourhood ; and they avail themselves of this opportunity of again pressing 
upon Members resident in the country the great service they may render 
to the Society, by taking upon themselves that not very troublesome office, 
or at all events by enlisting as Members such of their friends and neigh- 
bours as are known to take an interest in the objects for which it has been 
instituted. The Society's sphere of usefulness, the benefits it may be 


able to confer on Historical Literature, must mainly depend on the amount 
of funds which may be at the disposal of the Council. 

The Council have to regret the deaths, during the past year, of 






Right Hon. the EARL OF CARLISLE. 








Mr. D. HAIG. 














The Council have, during the past year, added the following works to 
the List of those to be published by the Society : 

I The Chronicle of Queen Jane and of Two Years of Queen Mary. To be 
edited by JOHN GOUGH NICHOLS, Esq., F.S.A. 

II. A Selection from the Porkington MS. in the possession of W. Ormsby Gore, 
Esq. M.P. To be edited by JAMES ORCHARD HALLIWELL, Esq., F.R.S. 


III. Household Roll of John of Brabant, Son in Law of King Edward the 
First. To be edited from the original in the Chapter House, Westminster, with a 
Translation and Notes by T. HUDSON TURNER, Esq. 

The books issued during the past year have been 

I. The Diary of Henry Machyn, Citizen and Merchant-Taylor of London, 
extending from the year 1550 to 1,563, now the Cottonian MS. Vitellius F. v. 
Edited by JOHN GOUGH NICHOLS, Esq., F.S.A. 

which belongs to the Subscription of the preceding year. 

The Society is much indebted to Mr. John Gough Nichols, for the 
ability and pains with which he has edited this Diary, one of the most 
valuable records of the interesting period to which it relates, and which 
has been hitherto scarcely known except by the frequent references which 
showed how much Strype was indebted to it in his various publications. 

II. Camden's Visitation of Huntingdonshire, made by Nicholas Charles, his 
Deputy. Edited from the Original Visitation preserved among the Cottonian Manu- 
scripts, by Sir HENRY ELLIS, K.H., F.R.S., Sec. S.A.; and illustrated with nume- 
rous Wood Engravings of Arms, Seals, &c. 

This work, the editorship of which was kindly undertaken by Sir Henry 
Ellis, removes the objection frequently made that the Society had done 
nothing for the memory of Camden as a Herald. It is the first in which 
Illustrations have been introduced to any extent ; and the Council feel 
assured that the satisfaction which they have felt at the manner in which 
the artist, Mr. Cleghorn, has executed the task entrusted to him, will be 
participated in by the Members generally, and justify the Council for the 
expense they incurred for that purpose. 

III. Smith's Obituary, from 1628 to 1674. Edited by Sir HENRY ELLIS, K.H. 
F.R.S., Sec. S.A. 

This volume, edited by the same zealous Member to whom the Society 
is indebted for the preceding work, was undertaken by the Council at the 
suggestion of one well able to judge of its value, Sir Charles Young, 
Garter King of Arms, who, having had a transcript of the Sloane MS. 
made for his own use, kindly placed the same at the service of the Council, 
for the purpose of publication. The Council have expressed their acknow- 
ledgments to Sir Charles Young for this kindness ; and the Meeting will 
probably think fit to mark by a vote of thanks their sense of the good 
feeling which he has, on this as on many former occasions, exhibited 
towards the Society. 


IV. Certaine Considerations upon the Government of England. By Sir Iloger 
Twysden, Kt. and Bart. Edited from the unpublished Manuscript by JOHN MIT- 
CHELL KEMBLE, Esq. M.A. &c. 

This work was pointed out to the Council by Mr. Kemble as one of the 
most valuable treatises existing on the subject to which it relates. 

As the book is at present in the hands of but few of the Members, in 
consequence of its delivery having only just commenced, the Council trust 
they may be permitted to express their conviction that the volume highly 
important in itself, for its illustration of the history of the Constitution will 
derive additional value from the masterly Introduction, in which Mr. Kemble 
has furnished an outline of the life of the author, Roger Twysden, " one of 
the most laborious and judicious Antiquaries that the seventeenth century 
produced;" and in which will be found an animated sketch of that distin- 
guished and powerful class, the Country Gentlemen of England of 1640, 
the class that produced Cotton, Spelman, Twysden, and others. 

The Council cannot conclude this Report without alluding to a change 
which has gradually come over the character of the Society's publications, 
a change which, while it has been the result of causes over which they 
have had comparatively little control^ is one they believe to be generally 
agreeable to the Members ; it is the purely historical nature of the later 
Camden Publications. 

Since the establishment of the Camden Society, similar Societies have 
been instituted for the publication of works more immediately connected 
with our early national Poetry and Drama. Their success has been at 
once a matter of congratulation to the Council, who regard such success 
as evidence of the soundness of the principles on which the Camden 
Society was founded, and a warning to them to devote the means at 
their disposal to illustrate, not so much the Poetical and Literary, as the 
Political and Social History of the Empire. 

By Order of the Council, 

THOMAS AMYOT, Director. 
WILLIAM J. THOMS, Secretary. 


DATED APRIL 28, 1849. 

WE, the Auditors appointed to audit the Accounts of the Camden Society, report 
to the Society, that the Treasurer has exhibited to us an account of the Receipts and 
Expenditure of the Society, from the 29th of April, 1848, to the 28th of April, 1849, 
and that we have examined the said accounts, with the vouchers relating thereto, and 
find the same to be correct and satisfactory. 

And we further report that the following is an Abstract of the Receipts and 
Expenditure of the Society during the period we have mentioned. 


Balance of last year's account .... 185 18 3 

Received on account of Members 
whose Subscriptions were in ar- 
rear at the last Audit ........ 103 

The like on account of Subscrip- 

tions due 1st May, 1848 ...... 671 

One year's dividend on 900 14*. 9rf. 
3 per Cent. Consols, invested in 
the names of the Trustees of the 
Society, deducting property-tax 26 

Total receipts for the year 986 2 9 


9. d. 

Paid for the purchase of 10 16*. 3d. 3 per Cent. Con 

sols, invested for the benefit of the Society 10 

Paid for printing and paper of 1,250 copies of " Ma- 

chyn's Diary" 334 

The like for 1,000 copies of " Huntingdon Visitation " 115 

The like for 1 ,000 copies of " Smith's Obituary " 77 

Paid for Woodcuts for " Huntingdon Visitation " . . . . 80 
Paid for binding 1,000 copies of " Yonge's Diary ". . .. 42 

The like for 1 ,000 copies of " Machyn's Diary " 52 

Paid for delivery and transmission of " Machyn's Diary '* 

and " Visitation of the County of Huntingdon," with 

paper for wrappers, &c 27 18 

Paid for Miscellaneous Printing, Lists of Members, 

Reports, &c 17 5 

Paid for Transcripts connected with works published or 

in progress 35 19 

Paid for Account Books, Lithograph Circulars, &c. . . 55 
One year's payment for keeping Accounts and General 

Correspondence of the Society 5210 

Paid for the expenses of last General Meeting 2 7 

Paid for postages, carriage of parcels, stationery, and 

other petty cash expenses 13 

Balance of Subscriptions and other receipts 121 10 

986 2 9 

And we, the Auditors, further state, that the Treasurer has reported to us, that 
over and above the present balance of 1 21 Os. lOd. there are outstanding various sub- 
scriptions of Foreign Members, of Members resident in places distant from London, 
and of Members recently elected, which the Treasurer sees no reason to doubt will 
shortly be received. 

Given under our hands this 28th day of April, 1849, 





For the Year 1838-9. 

1. Restoration of King Edward IV. 

2. Kyng Johan, by Bishop Bale. 

3. Deposition of Richard II. 

4. Plumpton Correspondence. 

5. Anecdotes and Traditions. 

For 1839-40. 

6. Political Songs. 

7. Hay ward's Annals of Elizabeth . 

8. Ecclesiastical Documents. 

9. Norden's Description of Essex. 

10. Warkworth's Chronicle. 

11. Kemp's Nine Daies Wonder. 

For 1840-41. 

12. The Egerton Papers. 

13. Chronica Jocelini de Brakelonda. 

14. Irish Narratives, 1641 and 1690. 

15. Rishanger's Chronicle. 

For 1841-42. 

16. Poems of Walter Mapes. 

17. Travels of Nicander Nucius. 

18. Three Metrical Romances. 

19. Diary of Dr. John Dee. 

For 1842-3. 

20. Apology for the Lollards. 

21. Rutland Papers. 

22. Diary of Bishop Cartwright. 

23. Letters of Eminent Literary Men. 

24. Proceedings against Dame Alice 


For 1843-44. 

25. Promptorium Parvulorum : Tom. I. 

26. Suppression of the Monasteries. 

27. Leycester Correspondence. 

For 1844-45. 

28. French Chronicle of London. 

29. Polydore Vergil. 

30. The Thornton Romances. 

31. Verney's Notes of the Long Parlia- 

For 1845-46. 

32. Autobiography of Sir John Bramston. 

33. Correspondence of James Duke of 


34. Liber de Antiquis Legibus. 

35. The Chronicle of Calais. 

For 1846-47. 

36. Polydore Vergil's History, Vol. I. 

37. Italian Relation of England. 

38. Church of Middleham. 

39. The Camden Miscellany, Vol. I. 

For 1847-48. 

40. Life of Lord Grey of Wilton. 

41. Diary of Walter Yonge, Esq. 

42. Diary of Henry Machyn. 

For 1848-49. 

43. Visitation of Huntingdonshire. 

44. Obituary of Richard Smyth. 

45. Twysden on the Government of 



Camden Society, London 
20 c Publicatlons a 

no. 4-6