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till the king's pleasure is known. This was against Notes of a Speech of the LORD Chancellor in the my opinion then declared plain enough ; but put to
Star-Chamber, in the cause of Sir HENRY YELVER. votes, and ruled by the major part, though some TON, Attorney-General..
concurred with me.
I do not like of this course, in respect that it puts Sorry for the person, being a gentleman that I the king in a strait; for either the note of severity lived with in Gray's-Inn; served with him when I must rest upon his Majesty, if he go on; or the was attorney ; joined with him in many services, thanks of clemency is in some part taken away, if and one, that ever gave me more attributes in public his Majesty go not on. than I deserved; and, besides, a man of very good I have cor unum et via una; and therefore did parts, which with me is friendship at first sight; my part as a judge and the king's chancellor. What much more joined with so ancient an acquaintance. is farther to be done, I will advise the king faithfully,
But, as a judge, I hold the offence very great, when I see his Majesty and your lordship. But and that without pressing measure; upon which I before I give advice, I must ask a question first. will only make a few observations, and so leave it. God ever preserve and prosper you.
1. First I observe the danger and consequence Your lordship's most obliged friend and faithof the offence: for if it be suffered, that the learned
ful servant, council shall practise the art of multiplication upon
FR, VERULAM, CANC. their warrants, the crown will be destroyed in small October 28, 1620. time. The great seal, the privy seal, signet, are solemn things; but they follow the king's hand. It is the bill drawn by the learned council and the docquet, that leads the king's hand.
LORD CHANCELLOR BACON TO THE 2. Next I note the nature of the defence. As
MARQUIS OF BUCKINGHAMI first, that it was error in judgment: for this surely,
MY VERY GOOD LORD, if the offence were small, though clear or great, but doubtful, I should hardly sentence it. For it is YESTERNIGHT we made an end of Sir Henry Yel. hard to draw a straight line by steadiness of hand; verton's cause. I have almost killed myself with but it could not be the swerving of the hand. And sitting almost eight hours. But I was resolved to herein I note the wisdom of the law of England, sit it through. He is sentenced to imprisonment which termeth the highest contempts and excesses in the Tower during the king's pleasure. The fine of authority, misprisions ; which if you take the of 40001, and discharge of his place, by way of sound and derivation of the words, is but mistaken : opinion of the court, referring it to the king's pleabut if you take the use and acceptation of the word, How I stirred the court, I leave it to others it is high and heinous contempts and usurpations to speak ; but things passed to his Majesty's great of authority; whereof the reason I take to be, and honour. I would not for any thing but he had the name excellently imposed; for that main mis- made his defence; for many chief points of the taking, it is ever joined with contempt; for he, that charge were deeper printed by the defence.
But reveres, will not easily mistake ; but he, that slights, yet I like it not in him; the less because he retained and thinks more of the greatness of his place than Holt, who is ever retained but to play the fool. God of the duty of his place, will soon commit mispri. ever prosper you. sions.
Your lordship’s most obliged friend and faithIndorsed,
ful servant, Star-chamber, October 24, 1620. Notes upon Mr.
FR. VERULAM, CANC. Altorney's cause.
11 Nov. 1620.
TO THE KING. TO THE MARQUIS OF BUCKINGHAM.
IT MAY PLEASE YOUR MOST EXCELLENT MAJESTY, MY VERY GOOD LORD,
In performance of your royal pleasure, signified It may be, your lordship will expect to hear from by Sir John Suckling, $ we have at several times me what passed yesterday in the star-chamber, considered of the petition of Mr. Christopher Viltouching Yelverton's cause, though we desired se- liers,|| and have heard, as well the registers and cretary Calvert to acquaint his Majesty therewith. ministers of the prerogative-court of Canterbury,
To make short, at the motion of the attorney, in and their council, as also the council of the lord person at the bar, and at the motion of my lord archbishop of Canterbury. And setting aside such steward † in court, the day of proceeding is deferred other points, as are desired by the petition, we do
He was prosecuted in the star-chamber, for having † The duke of Lenox. passed certain clauses in a charter, lately granted to the city | From the collections of the late Robert Stephens, Esq. of London, not agreeable to his Majesty's warrant, and dero He was afterwards comptroller of the household to king gatory to his honour. But the chief reason of the severity Charles I. and father of the poet of the same name. against him was thought to be the marquis of Buckingham's || Youngest brother to the marquis of Buckingham. He resentment against him, for having opposed, according to the was created, April 23, 1623, baron of Daventry and earl of duty of his office, some oppressive, if not illegal, patents, which | Anglesey. He died September 24, 1624. the projectors of those times were busy in preparing.
think, that your Majesty may by law, and without patents, which we have represented to his Majesty, inconvenience, appoint an officer, that shall have the as like to be stirred in by the lower house of parengrossing of the transcripts of all wills to be sealed liament, we have set down three, which may conwith the seal of either of the prerogative-courts, cern some of your lordship's special friends, which which shall be proved in communi forma ; and like I account as mine own friends, and so showed wise of all inventories, to be exhibited in the same myself, when they were in suit. The one, that to courts.
Sir Giles Mompesson, touching the inns; the second We see it necessary, that all wills, which are not to Mr. Christopher Villiers and Mr. Maule, touching judicially controverted, be engrossed before the pro- the recognizances for ale-houses; the third, to Mr. bate. Yet as the law now stands, no officer of Lieutenant of the Tower, touching the cask. These those courts can lawfully take any fee or reward in duty could not be omitted, for that specially the for engrossing the said wills and inventories, the two first of them are more rumoured, both by the statute of the 21st of king Henry VIIIth restrain- vulgar and by the gentlemen, yea, and by the judges ing them. Wherefore we hold it much more con- themselves, than any other patents at this day. Tenient, that it should be done by a lawful officer, Therefore I thought it appertained to the singular to be appointed by your Majesty, than in a cause love and affection, which I bear you upon so many not warrantable by law. Yet our humble opinion obligations, to wish and advise, that your lordship, and advice is, that good consideration be had in whom God hath made in all things so fit to be passing this book, as well touching a moderate pro- beloved, would put off the envy of these things, portion of fees to be allowed for the pains and tra- which I think in themselves bear no great fruit; vel of the officer, as for the expedition of the suitor, and rather take the thanks for ceasing them, than in such sort that, the subject may find himself in the note for maintaining them. But howsoever let better case than he is now, and not in worse. me know your mind, and your lordship shall find I
But however we conceive this may be convenient will go your way. in the two courts of prerogative, where there is I cannot express, how much comfort I take in the much business, yet in the ordinary course of the choice his Majesty hath made of my lord chief bishops diocesans, we hold the same will be incon- justice to be lord treasurer ; not for his sake, nor Tenient, in regard of the small employment.
for my sake, but for the king's sake ; hoping, that Your Majesty's most faithful and obedient
now a number of counsels, which I have given for servants,
the establishment of his Majesty's estate, and have FR. VERULAM, CANC. lain dead and deeper than this snow, may now spring ROBERT NAUNTON.
up and bear fruit; the rather, for that I persuade HENRY MONTAGU.* myself, he and I shall run one way. And yet I November 15, 1620.
know well, that in this doubling world cor unum et via una is rare in one man, but more rare between
two. And therefore, if it please his Majesty, acTO THE LORD CHANCELLOR."
cording to his prudent custom in such cases, to cast
out, now at his coming down, some words, which After my very hearty commendations, I have may the better knit us in conjunction to do him acquainted his Majesty with your letter, who com service, I suppose it will be to no idle purpose. manded me to tell you, that he had been thinking And as an old truant in the commission of the upon the same point, whereof you write, three or treasury, let me put his Majesty in remembrance of four days ago, being so far from making any ques three things now upon his entrance, which he is tion of it, that he every day expected when a writ presently to go in hand with : the first, to make Ireshould come down. For at the creation of prince land to bear the charge thereof; the second, to bring Henry, the lords of the council and judges assured all accounts to one purse in the exchequer; the third, bis Majesty of as much, as the precedents, mention by all possible means to endeavour the taking off of ed in your letter, speak of. And so I rest
the anticipations. There be a thousand things more ; Your lordship's very loving friend at command,
but these being his Majesty's last commands to the
commissioners of the treasury, with such as in his G. BUCKINGHAM.
Majesty's princely judgment shall occur, will do well Newmarket, the 24th of Novemb. 1620.
to season his place. Indorsed,
Your lordship's most obliged friend and faithful Showing his Majesty is satisfied with precedents,
servant, louching the prince's summons to parliament.
FR. VERULAM, CANC. November 29, 1620.
As soon as I had written this letter, I received TO THE MARQUIS OF BUCKINGHAM. your lordship's letter, touching my lord chief justice,
which redoubled my comfort, to see how his MaMY VERY GOOD LORD,
jesty's thoughts and mine, his poor servant's, and Your lordship may find that in the number of your lordship's meet. • Lord chief justice of the king's bench, who, on the 3d of De
+ Harl. MSS. Vol. 7000. cember following, was advanced to the post of high treasurer. VOL. II.
I send enclosed names for the speaker; and if his to take into consideration grievances of like nature, Majesty, or your lordship, demand our opinion, which which have sprung up since the said last session, of them, my lord chief justice will tell you. It were which are the more like to be called upon, by how well it were despatched; for else I will not dine with much they are the more fresh, signifying withal, the speaker ; for his drink will not be laid in time that they were of two kinds ; some proclamations enough.
and commissions, and many patents; which neverI beseech your lordship, care may be taken, that theless, we did not trouble his Majesty withal in our general letter may be kept secret, whereof my particular: partly, for that we were not then fully lord chief justice will tell you the reason.
prepared, as being a work of some length, and partly, for that we then desired and obtained leave of his Majesty to communicate them with the council-table.
But now since 1, the chancellor, received his MaTO THE KING.
jesty's pleasure by secretary Calvert, that we should
first present them to his Majesty with some advice IT MAY PLEASE Your Most EXCELLENT MAJESTY, thereupon provisionally, and as we are capable, and ACCORDING to your commandment, we have heard thereupon know his Majesty's pleasure before they once more the proctors of the prerogative-court, be brought to the table, which is the work of this what they could say; and find no reason to alter, despatch. in any part, our former certificate. Thus much And hereupon his Majesty may be likewise withal we think fit to note to your Majesty, that our pleased to call to mind, that we then said, and do former certificate, which we now ratify, is principally now also humbly make remonstrance to his Majesty, grounded upon a point in law, upon the statute of that in this we do not so much express the sense of 21 Henry VIII. wherein we the chancellor and our own minds or judgments upon the particulars, treasurer, for our own opinions, do conceive the law as we do personate the lower house, and cast with is clear; and your solicitor-general * concurs. ourselves what is like to be stirred there. And there
Now whether your Majesty will be pleased to rest | fore if there be any thing, either in respect of the matin our opinions, and so to pass the patents; or give ter or the persons, that stands not so well with his us leave to assist ourselves with the opinion of some Majesty's good liking, that his Majesty would be principal judges now in town, whereby the law may graciously pleased not to impute it unto us; and be the better resolved, to avoid farther question withal to consider, that it is to this good end, that hereafter ; we leave it to your Majesty's royal plea- his Majesty may either remove such of them, as in sure. This we represent the rather, because we dis- his own princely judgment, or with the advice of his cern such a confidence in the proctors, and those upon council, he shall think fit to be removed; or be the whom they depend, as, it is not unlike, they will better provided to carry through such of them, as he bring it to a legal question.
shall think fit to be maintained, in case they should And so we humbly kiss your Majesty's hands, be moved ; and so the less surprised. praying for your preservation.
First, therefore, to begin with the patents, we Your Majesty's most humble and obedient
find three sorts of patents, and those somewhat fre
quent, since the session of 7mo, which in genere we servants,
FR. VERULAM, CANC. conceive may be most subject to exception of griev-
ance; patents of old debts, patents of concealments,
and patents of monopolies, and forfeitures for disROBERT NAUNTON.
pensations of penal laws, together with some other York-house, December 12, 1620.
particulars, which fall not so properly under any one head.
In these three heads, we do humbly advise seve
ral courses to be taken : for the first two, of old THE LORD CHANCELLOR AND TWO CHIEF debts and concealments, for that they are in a sort
JUSTICES † TO THE MARQUIS OF BUCK- legal, though there may be found out some point in INGIAM.
law to overthrow them; yet it would be a long OUR VERY GOOD LORD,
business by course of law, and a matter unusual by
act of council, to call them in. But that, that It may please his Majesty to call to mind, that moves us chiefly to avoid the questioning them at when we gave his Majesty our last account of the council-table, is, because if they shall be taken parliament business in his presence, we went over away by the king's act, it may let in upon him a the grievances of the last parliament in 7mo,f with flood of suitors for recompence; whereas, if they our opinion by way of probable conjecture, which be taken away at the suit of the parliament, and a of them are likely to fall off, and which may per- law thereupon made, it frees the king, and leaves chance stick and be renewed. And we did also then him to give recompence only where he shall be acquaint his Majesty, that we thought it no less fit pleased to intend grace. Wherefore we conceive
* Sir Thomas Coventry, who was made attorney-general, Jan. 14, 1620-1.
† Sir Henry Montagu of the king's bench, and Sir Henry Hobart of the common pleas.
That which began February 9, 1609; and was prorogued July 23, 1610.
the most convenient way will be, if some grave and may be more liberal than of later times, a pardon discreet gentleman of the country, such as have lost being the ancient remuneration in parliament. relation to the court, make, at fit times, some modest Thus hoping his Majesty, out of his gracious and motion touching the same; and that his Majesty accustomed benignity, will accept of our faithful enwould be graciously pleased to permit some law to deavours, and supply the rest by his own princely pass, for the time past only, no ways touching his wisdom and direction ; and also humbly praying his Majesty's regal power, to free the subjects from the Majesty, that when he hath himself considered of same; and so his Majesty, after due consultation, to our humble propositions, he will give us leave to give way unto it.
impart them all, or as much as he shall think fit, For the third, we do humbly advise, that such of to the lords of his council, for the better strength of them, as his Majesty shall give way to have called his service, we conclude with our prayers for his in, may be questioned before the council-table, Majesty's happy preservation, and always rest, &c. either as granted contrary to his Majesty's book of
Indorsed, lounty, or found since to have been abused in the execution, or otherwise by experience discovered to
The lord chancellor and the two chief justices to the be burdensome to the country. But herein we king, concerning parliament business. shall add this farther humble advice, that it be not done as matter of preparation to a parliament; but that occasion be taken, partly upon revising of the book of bounty, and partly upon the fresh examples TO TILE LORD CHANCELLOR, AND THE LORD in Sir Henry Yelverton's case of abuse and surrep
MANDEVILLE, LORD TREASURER OF tion in obtaining of patents; and likewise, that it
ENGLAND.* be but a continuance in conformity of the council's
MY HONOURABLE LORDS, former diligence and vigilancy, which hath already stayed and revoked divers patents of like nature, His Majesty is pleased, according to your lord#hereof we are ready to show the examples. Thus, ships' certificate, to rely upon your judgments, and we conceive, his Majesty shall keep his greatness, hath made choice of Sir Robert Lloyd, knight, to and somewhat shall be done in parliament, and be patentee and master of the office of engrossing somewhat out of parliament, as the nature of the the transcripts of all wills and inventories in the subject and business require.
prerogative-courts, during his highness's pleasure, We have sent his Majesty herewith a schedule and to be accountable unto his Majesty for such of the particulars of these three kinds; wherein, for profits as shall arise out of the same office. And the first two, we have set down all that we could at his Majesty's farther pleasure is, that your lordship this time discover: but in the latter, we have chosen forthwith proportion and set down, as well a reasonout biit some, that are most in speech, and do most able rate of fees for the subject to pay for engrossing tend, either to the vexation of the common people, the said transcripts, as also such fees, as your lordof the discountenancing of our gentlemen and jus- ship shall conceive fit to be allowed to the said tices, the one being the original, the other the patentee for the charge of clerks and ministers for Representative of the commons.
execution of the said office. And to this effect his There being many more of like nature, but not of Majesty hath commanded me to signify his pleasure Lke weight, nor so much rumoured, which, to take to his solicitor-generalť to prepare a book for his away now in a blaze, will give more scandal, that | Majesty's signature. And so I bid your lordship such things were granted, than thanks, that they be heartily well to fare, and remain not revoked.
Your lordship's very loving friend, And because all things may appear to his Majesty
G. BUCKINGHAM. in the true light, we have set down, as well the sutors as the grants, and not only those in whose
Royston, December 17, 1620. Dames the patents were taken, but those whom they concern, as far as comes to our knowledge.
For proclamations and commissions, they are tender things; and we are willing to meddle with them TO THE MARQUIS OF BUCKINGHAM. sparingly. For as for such as do but wait upon
MY VERY GOOD LORD, fatents, wherein his Majesty, as we conceived, gave oome approbation to have them taken away, it is I was so full of cold, as I could not attend his better they fall away, by taking away the patent Majesty to-day. Yesterday I despatched the proitself, than otherwise; for a proclamation cannot be clamation with the council. There was a motion to revoked but by proclamation, which we avoid. have sharpened it; but better none, than over sharp
For those commonwealth bills, which his Majesty at first. I moved the council also for supplying the approved to be put in readiness, and some other committee for drawing of bills and some other mattings, there will be time enough hereafter to give ters, in regard of my lord Hobart's f sickness, who, His Majesty account, and amongst them, of the I think, will hardly escape; which, though it be extent of his Majesty's pardon, which, if his sub happiness for him, yet it is loss for us. jects do their part, as we hope they will, we do wish Meanwhile, as I propounded to the king, which • Harl. MSS. Vol. 7000. † Sir Thomas Coventry.
Lord chief justice of the common n-pleas.
he allowed well, I have broken the main of the parliament into questions and parts, which I send. It
TO THE LORD CHANCELLOR. may be, it is an over-diligence; but still methinks
MY HONOURABLE LORD, there is a middle thing between art and chance: I think they call it providence, or some such thing, His Majesty hath commanded me to signify his which good servants owe to their sovereign, espe. pleasure unto you, that you give present order to cially in cases of importance and straits of occasions. the clerk of the crown to draw a bill to be signed And those huffing elections, and general licence of by his Majesty for Robert Heath, late recorder of speech, ought to make us the better provided. The London, to be his Majesty's solicitor-general. So way will be, if his Majesty will be pleased to peruse I rest these questions advisedly, and give me leave to wait Your lordship's faithful friend and servant, on him; and then refer it to some few of the coun
G. BUCKINGHAM. cil, a little to advise upon it. I ever rest
Theobald's, 20th of January, 1620. Your lordship’s most obliged friend and faithful servant,
FR. VERULAM, CANC.
TO THE KING.Ş
I thank God I number days, both in thankfulness
to him, and in warning to myself. I should likeMY HONOURABLE LORD,
wise number your Majesty's benefits, which, as, to His Majesty hath commanded me to signify his take them in all kinds, they are without number; pleasure unto your lordship, that Sir Thomas Coven
so even in this kind of steps and degrees vf advancetry, now his solicitor-general, be forthwith made his ment, they are in greater number, than scarcely any attorney-general; and that your lordship give order
other of your subjects can say. For this is now the to the clerk of the crown to draw up a grant of the eighth time that your Majesty hath raised me. said place unto him accordingly. And so I rest
You formed me of the learned council extraorYour lordship's faithful friend and servant,
dinary, without patent or fee, a kind of individuum
vagum. You established me, and brought me into G. BUCKINGHAM.
ordinary. Soon after you placed me solicitor, where Whitehall, 9th of January, 1620.
I served seven years. Then your Majesty made me your attorney, or procurator-general; then privy
counsellor, while I was attorney; a kind of miracle TO THE LORD CHANCELLOR.+
of your favour, that had not been in many ages;
thence keeper of your seal; and, because that was MY HONOURABLE LORD,
a kind of planet, and not fixed, chancellor: and I have been entreated to recommend unto your when your Majesty could raise me no higher, it was lordship the distressed case of the lady Martin, your grace to illustrate me with beams of honour, widow of Sir Richard Martin, deceased, who hath first making me baron Verulam, and now viscount a cause to be heard before your lordship in the St. Alban. So this is the eighth rise or reach, a chancery, at your first sitting in the next term, be diapason in music, even a good number, and accord tween her and one Archer, and others, upon an for a close. And so I may, without superstition, be ancient statute, due long since unto her husband; buried in St. Alban's habit or vestment.
I am informed, hath received three Besides the number, the obligation is increased by verdicts for her in the common law, a decree in the three notes or marks: first, that they proceed from exchequer chamber, and a dismission before your such a king; for honours from some kings are but lordship: which I was the more willing to do, be great chancels, or counters, set high; but from your cause I have seen a letter of his Majesty to the said Majesty, they are indeed dignities, by the co-operaSir Richard Martin, acknowledging the good service tion of your grace. Secondly, in respect of the conthat he did him in this kingdom, at the time of his tinuance of your Majesty's favour, which proceedeth, Majesty's being in Scotland. And therefore I de as the Divine favour, from grace to grace. And, sire your lordship, that you would give her a full thirdly, these splendours of honour are like your and fair hearing of her cause, and a speedy despatch freest patents, absque aliquid inde reddendo. Offices thereof, her poverty being such, that having nothing have burden of cares and labours; but honours to live on but her husband's debts, if her suit long have no burden but thankfulness, which doth rather depend, she shall be enforced to lose her cause for raise men's spirits, than accuble them, or press them want of means to follow it: wherein I acknowledge down. your lordship's favour, and rest
Then I must say, quid retribunam? I have noYour lordship's faithful friend and servant, thing of mine own. That that God hath given me, 7
G. BUCKINGHAM. I shall present unto your Majesty ; which is care Whitehall, the 13th of January, 1620.
and diligence, and assiduous endeavour, and that, * Harl. MSS. Vol. 7000.
✓ This seems to have been written by lord St. Albans, just † Ibid.
after he was created a viscount by that title, January 27, 102).