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standing, as to lose those abilities, and by my miscarriage to so noble a patron, cast myself headlong from the top of that honor to the very bottome of contempt and scorn ? Surely my lord cannot think so meanly of me.' The gentleman replied, I deliver you nothing from myself, but the words are put into my mouth by his lordship, to which I neither add nor diminish ; for had it been left to my discretion, surely, though I might have given you the substance, yet should I have apparelled it in a more modest attire ; but as I have faithfully delivered my lord's to you, so will I as faithfully return yours to his lordship.'
“ You must understand the reason of this message was his ungratefulness to Essex, which every one could remember ; for the earle saved him from starving, and he requited him so as his apology must witness ; were there not a great fault there needed no apology: nor could any age, but a worthless and corrupt, in men and manners, have thought him worthy such a place of honor.”
Such is a specimen of falsehoods at that time in circulation. It is thus noticed in the Life of Lord Bacon in the Biographia Britannica.
“ There is perhaps no country in the world in which exalted fortune does not beget envy, but at the same time, I believe, it may be truly said that kind of envy rises no where higher, or manifests itself with more violence and bitterness than with us in England. The Lord Keeper Bacon felt this very severely, for no sooner was he advanced to this high point of preferment in his profession, than all tongues were opened against him, that either from interest or inclination, wished to have seen some other person seated in that high post. However, very little evil was publicly divulged of him during his lifetime, when it might have afforded room for apology or defence, but has discovered itself in libels, penned indeed by such as lived in his days, but not such as were most likely to be well acquainted with him, or the points of which they so confidently
Sir Anthony Weldon, in his Court and Character of King James, asserts,” &c. as stated supra. The biographer in the Biographia Britannica adds, “ But this account contains two egregious falsities : for, in the first place, though, as we have seen in the text, Camden says, the Chancellor resigned to the King himself; other authors agree that it was the King sent for the seals, and not the Duke of Buckingham; and he sent for them, not by Sir Francis Bacon, but by Secretary Winwood, with this message, that himself would be his under-keeper, and not dispose of them while he lived to bear the name of Chancellor; nor did any person remove the seal out of the King's sight till the Lord Egerton died, which happened soon after. In the next place, the Lord Chancellor Egerton, as Dr. Tennison observes, was willing that the Attorney General, Bacon, should be his successor, and ready to promote it: so far was he from conceiving any hatred against him either upon that or any other account. In the same volume we have likewise his speech at the taking his place in Chancery, in performance of the charge his majesty had given him, when he received the seals in 1617. Sir Anthony Weldon has upon this occasion introduced another scandalous story with regard to Sir Francis Bacon, and tells us that this great favourite (Buckingham) sent a noble gentleman and of much worth to him with this message, That he knew him,” &c. ut supra. He then adds, “ Very hard language this of a man so eminent and well known, and this from a person of no character at all, or, which is worse, of a very bad one. At present it shall suffice that we observe there is not the least degree of probability in the story which he relates, at the same time that he pretends not to the least shadow of evidence; so that we are to take a fact, which would scarcely deserve credit, though supported by ever so good witnesses, without any witness at all, and this against the light of one's own reason, and of a multitude of facts which may be alleged to discredit it; for whereas this is made to have been a sudden promotion, in consequence of a bargain with Buckingham, we have seen that it was so far from being such a promotion, that it was long before in agitation with the King himself, upon whom it is evident enough Sir Francis Bacon chiefly depended. This story makes Buckingham, even before he had acquired that title, an insolent and overbearing favourite, which is directly contrary to what all the historians
of those times say, who commend him for his affability and generosity at the beginning, by which, as he rose in the King's favour, he grew likewise in esteem with his subjects, pursuing therein a conduct very different from that of his predecessor, Somerset, who really raised and disgraced, brought into credit or drove out of the court, without the least regard to decency, men of great merit or men of none, just as his interest required or his fancy dictated. It is not therefore at all probable, that the new favourite, who so well knew by what steps the old one became so very odious, should immediately pursue his path; more especially when he could not but very well know, that he was far enough from being absolutely master of the King's good graces, out of which he had very nearly thrown himself a very little after this, by most imprudently discovering his aversion to the King's intended journey inio Scotland.”
Saunderson says, speaking of Lord Ellesmere, “ This aged statesman leaves the seat of deciding, and sits down himself to his devotions, leaving the seal to be born by Bacon. But the manner of the dispose is mis-told by the pamphlet (who makes it the Chancellor's heart-break to be rid of the charge), when in truth the term come, and Ellesmere sick, the king sent for the seal, by Secre. tary Winwood, with a gracious message; that himself would be his deputy, and not dispose it whilst Ellesmere lived to bear the title of Chancellor, nor did any one receive it out of the Kiug's sight till he was dead, nor long after.” 1616.
NOTE FFF. His works abound with proofs of this. In a letter to Lord Burleigh in the year 1592, he says, “ My health, I thank God, I find confirmed ; and I do not fear that action shall impair it: because I account my ordinary course of study and meditation to be more painful than most parts of action are. I ever bear a mind, in some middle place that I could discharge, to serve her majesty ; not as a man born under Sol, that loveth honour; nor under Jupiter, that loveth business, for the contemplative planet carrieth me away wholly. The meanness of my estate doth somewhat move me : for though I cannot accuse myself, that I am either prodigal or slothful, yet my health is not to spend, nor my course to get. Lastly, I confess that I have as vast contemplative ends, as I have moderate civil ends : for I have taken all knowledge to be my province. And if your lordship will not carry me on, I will not do as Anaxagoras did, who reduced himself with contemplation unto voluntary poverty ; but this I will de : I will sell the inheritance that I have, and purchase some lease of quick revenue, or some office of gain, that shall be executed by deputy and so give over all care of service, and become some sorry book-maker, or a true pioneer in that mine of truth, which, he said, lay so deep. This which I have writ unto your lordship, is rather thoughts than words, being set down without all art, disguising, or reservation : wherein I have done honour both to your lordship’s wisdom, in judging that that will be best believed of your lordship which is truest; and to your lordship’s good nature, in retaining nothing from you."
In a letter to the Lord Treasurer of 21st March, 1594, he says, To speak plainly, though perhaps, vainly, I do not think that the ordinary practice of the law, not serving the Queen in place, will be admitted for a good account of the poor talent that God hath given me, so as I make reckoning I shall reap no great benefit to myself in that course.
In a letter to Essex, March 30, 1594, he says, “ I will, by God's assistance, with this disgrace of my fortune, and yet with that comfort of the good opinion of so many honourable and worthy persons, retire myself, with a couple of men, to Cambridge, and there spend my life in my studies and contemplations without looking back.
In à letter to the Earl of Northumberland, a few days before Queen Elizabeth's death, he says, “ And to be plain with your lordship, it is very true, and no winds or noises of civil matters can blow this out of my head or heart, that your great capacity and love towards studies and contemplations, of a higher and worthier nature than popular, a nature rare in the world, and in a
person of your lordship's quality almost singular, is to me a great and chief motive to draw my affection and admiration towards you: and therefore, good my lord, if I may be of any use to your lordship by my head, tongue, pen, means, or friends, I humbly pray you to hold me your own: and herewithal, not to do so much disadvantage to my good mind, nor partly to your own worth, as to conceive, that this commendation of my humble service produceth out of any straits of my occasions, but merely out of an election, and indeed the fulness of my heart. And so wishing your lordship all prosperity, I continue.”
In a letter to the Lord Treasurer (1594) he says, “ I am to give you humble thanks for your favourable opinion, which by Mr. Secretary's report I find you conceive of me for the obtaining of a good place, which some of my honourable friends have wished unto me ' nec opinanti.'. I will use no reason to persuade your lordship’s mediation but this, that your lordship and my other friends shall in this beg my life of the Queen ; for I see well the bar will be my bier, as I must and will use it rather than my poor estate or reputation shall decay: but I stand indifferent whether God call me or her majesty.”
The following is from the dedication to the first edition of his Essays to his brother, who was lame : " Dedicating them, such as they are, to our love, in the depth whereof (I assure you) I sometimes wish your infirmities translated upon myself, that her majesty might have the service of so active and able a mind, and I might be with excuse confined to these contemplations and studies for which I am fittest; so commend I you to the preservation of the Divine Majesty. From my chamber at Gray's Inn, this 30th of January, 1597." In a letter to Essex, 1594, he says:
Lord of Essex. It may please your good Lordship,- I pray God her majesty's weighing be not like the weight of a balance; gravia deorsum, levia sursum. But I am as far from being altered in devotion towards her, as I am from distrust that she will be altered in opinion towards me, when she knoweth me better. For myself, I have lost some opinion, some time, and some means; this is my account : but then for opinion, it is a blast that goeth and cometh ; for time, it is true, goeth and cometh not, but yet I have learned that it may be redeemed.
For means, I value that most; and the rather, because I am purposed not to follow the practice of the law, if her majesty command me in any particular, I shall be ready to do her willing service; and my reason is only because it drinketh too much time, which I have dedicated to better purposes. But even for that point of estate and means, I partly lean to Thales's opinion, That a philosopher may be rich if he will. Thus your lordship seeth how I comfort myself; to the increase whereof I would fain please myself to believe that to be true which my Lord Treasurer writeth; which is, that it is more than a philosopher can morally digest. But without any such high conceit, I esteem it like the pulling out of an aching tooth, which, I remember, when I was a child, and had little philosophy, I was glad of when it was done. For your lordship, I do think myself more beholden to you than to any man: and I say, I reckon myself as a common, not popular, but common; and as much as is lawful to be inclosed of a common, so much your lordship shall be sure to have. Your Lordship’s, to obey your honourable commands, more settled than ever. In a letter to the King, dated April 1, 1616, he says,
“ Were your majesty mounted, and seated without difficulties and distaste in your business, as I desire and hope to see
you, I should • ex animo' desire to spend the decline of my years
in In a letter to the Earl of Salisbury respecting the solicitor's place, written about the year 1607, he says, “ It is thought Mr. Attorney shall be chief justice of the Common-place; in case Mr. Solicitor rise, I would be glad now at last to be solicitor: chiefly because I think it will increase my practice, wherein God blessing me a few years, I may mend my state, and so after fall to my studies and ease ; whereof one is requisite for my body, and the other serveth for my mind.”
Upon taking his seat in Chancery, having explained his intention as to his mode of discharging his judicial duties, he says, “ The depth of the three long vacations I would reserve in some measure free from business of estate, and for studies, arts, and sciences, to which in my own nature I am most inclined.”
NOTE HHH. · Towards his rising years, not before, he entered into a married estate, and took to wife, Alice, one of the daughters and co-heirs of Benedict Barnham, Esq. and alderman of London, with whom he received a sufficiently ample and liberal portion in marriage. Children he had none : which, though they be the means to perpetuate our names after our deaths; yet he had other issues to perpetuate his name : the issues of his brain ; in which he was ever happy and admired; as Jupiter was in the production of Pallas. Neither did the want of children detrast from his good usage of his consort, during the intermarriage; whom he prosecuted with much conjugal love and respect, with many rich gifts and endow. ments, besides a robe of honour which he invested her withal, which she wore untjl her dying day, being twenty years and more after his death. Rawley.
Mallet's life, page xlix. He continued single till after forty, and then took to wife a daughter of Alderman Barnham of London, with whom he received a plentiful fortune, but had by her no children ; and she outlived him upwards of twenty years.
The following is from Lord Bacon's will : Devises and legacies to my wife, I give grant and confirm to my loving wife by this my last will, whatsoever hath been assured to her, or mentioned or intended to be assured to her by any former deed, be it either my lands in Hertfordshire, or the farm of the seal, or the gift of goods in accomplishment of my covenants of marriage; and I give her also the ordinary stuff at Gorhambury, as wainscot tables stools, bedding, and the like; always reserving and excepting the rich bangings with their covers, the table carpets, and the long cushions, and all other stuff which was or is used in the long gallery; and also a rich chair which was my neice Cæsar's gift, and also the armour, and also all tables of marble and towch : I give also to my wife my four coach geldings and my best caroache, and her own coach mares and caroache: I give also and grant to my wife the one half of the rent which was reserved upon Reades lease for her life; which rent although I in. tended to her merely for her better maintenance while she lived at her own charge, and not to continue after my death, yet because she has begun to receive it, I am content to continue it to her; and I conceive by this advancement, which first and last, I have left her, besides her own inheritance, I have made her of competent abilities to maintain the estate of a viscountesspand given sufficient tokens of my love and liberality towards her; for I do reckon (and that with the least) that Gorhambury and my lands in Hertfordshire, will be worth unto her seven hundred pounds per annum besides Woodfells and the leases of the houses, whereof five hundred pounds per annum only I was tied unto my covenants upon marriage; so as the two hundred pounds and better was mere benevolence; the six hundred pounds per annum upon the farm of the writs was likewise mere Lenevolence; her own inheritance also, with that she purchased with part of her portion, is two hundred pounds per annum and better, besides the wealth she has in jewels, plate or otherwise, wherein I was never straight handed. All which I here set down, not because I think it too much, but because others may not think it less than it is.
What was Bacon's motive for this bequest it seems difficult to discover, for in the very same will there is the following clause : “Whatsoever I have given, granted, confirmed, or appointed to my wife, in the former part of this my will, I do now for just and great causes utterly revoke and make void, and leave her to her right only." It was not, without some difficulty, that I discovered the place where
e Lady Verulam is buried.
Newcomb in his history of St. Albans, page 503, says, “ lle married Alice, a daughter of Benedict Baroham, alderman of London, who is interred (as a
marble tablet shews) in the cathedral of Chichester; and whose other daughter was the unfortunate wife of the Lord Castlehaven ; who for his ill-treatment of her was with his accomplice hanged."
In consequence of this statement, I applied to a friend at Chichester. The following is the answer : “ Our cathedral contains the ashes not of Lady Bacon, but of her grandmother, who, as well as her daughter and Lady Bacon bore the name of Alice, and hence I suppose whoever furnished the paper' referred to, was led into a very natural mistake. There is in the south aisle of the cathedral a mural tablet of brass, hideous enough and coarsely engraved. It represents two figures kneeling. The man in the robes of an alderman with six sons also kneeling behind him, the woman in the dress of the times with her eight daughters , ranged behind her, perhaps this goodly patriarchal train moved the sympathy of Cromwell's soldiers, who laid violent hands on monuments of this description, but to keep to the point, these figures as the inscription testifies, are those of William Bradbridge, thrice mayor of this city, and Alice his wife attended by their whole family. One of the eight daughters named Alice, married Francis Barnham, alderman and sheriff of London. She became a widow, and erected this monument which was finished in July 1592. In December 1598, Alice Barnham bequeathed 1201. to be freely lent to young tradesmen of this city. In this bequest she is mentioned as the mother of Stephen Barnham, then representative for Chichester. It appears to me, that the Alice who married Lord Bacon, must have been the sister of Stephen Barnham, and that the idea of interment here may have arisen from the name of their mother Alice Barnham, the erectress of the tablet, being inscribed on it. If this be correct would not the Bradbridge arms be quartered with those of Bacon? Dallaway gives them thus : • Arms, sable, a pheon argent, Bradbridge.' In Dallaway's Western Sussex, page 138, of the History and Antiquities of Chichester, may be found the inscription verbatim, of which I have given the substance. I shewed your letter to one of our clergyman, Holland, the brother-in-law of Murray the bookseller, the cathedral is his. Great Diana,' and I thought he would know as much about it as any one, also to others, they all agree with me in thinking the case to be probably as above supposed."
Lysons Magna Brittannia, Bedfordshire, page 83. Eyworth, on the borders of Cambridgeshire, about three miles from Potion, and five from Biggleswade.
In the reign of Elizabeth, Eyworth was the property and seat of Sir Edmund Anderson, Lord Chief Justice of the Common Pleas; a man of considerable eminence in his profession, and one of the judges who sat at the trial of Mary Queen of Scots. In the church are serera monuments of tħe Andersons. On the floor of the chancel is the tomb of Alice, Viscountess Verulam, and Baroness St. Alban's, widow of the great Lord Chancellor Bacon, who died in 1656, probably at the house of Mr. Anderson, to whom she was related.
My Dear Sir,- Probably the annexed may be new to you, and if so, cannot fail of being interesting as connected with an object dear to your feelings,
Yours very truly, J. BRITTON. To Basil Montagu, Esq. Close to the church at Eyworth was an ancient mansion, belonging to Sir Edmund Anderson, Lord Chief Justice of the Common Pleas, one of the Judges who sat on the trial of Mary Queen of Scots. The title became extinct in 1773. Was Lady Bacon related to the Andersons ? the house is levelled to the ground, but several terraces, moats, and garden walls, are evidences of its former consequence.
Here lieth interred the body of Dame Alice, Baroness Verulam,