Cecil Papers: January 1605

Page 197

Calendar of the Cecil Papers in Hatfield House: Volume 23, Addenda, 1562-1605. Originally published by Her Majesty's Stationery Office, London, 1973.

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January 1605

Ellen McCarthy to Viscount Cranborne.
1604–5, January 26. She is forced out of sheer necessity to submit her grievances to him, and to request a more liberal allowance from the King. She recently submitted a petition to Cranborne and the Privy Council, and received the answer that they could see no valid reason why she should importune the King any further. She proposes to present yet another petition to justify her request for a decent maintenance, if not for her father's lands, which although surrendered by him to the late Queen Elizabeth, ought to descend to her by a deed of entail made by her grandfather. When this deed was shown to the late Queen, she commanded the Earl of Essex, then Lord Lieutenant of Ireland, to grant an estate of inheritance to petitioner of the lands, but this was not performed because of the Earl's sudden return to England and the disturbances that followed in Munster, and also because of the misdemeanours of her late husband which should not be imputed to her nor serve to neutralize the late Queen's grant. She begs Cranborne to advise her as to the best means of obtaining relief for herself and her four children "although their father be degenerate, and indeed to my extreame greife I speake it, my dishonor and theirs". He has acted unnaturally towards her and them, and she has hitherto concealed the many injuries they have received from him. But now he is scheming to sell or mortgage the small house and the little land attached to it, which she was allowed to keep by the late Queen, and which belonged to her father. Her husband has no right to this property other than by her title, which is as valid as in the case of the rest of her father's lands granted by the King to Sir Nicholas Browne and Donnell McCarthy. She asks that her husband be prevented from executing this plan and that she be permitted to enjoy her possessions in peace.— This xxvith of January, 1604.
Seal. Endorsed: "1604. Lady Carty to my lord." 1 p. (P. 2413.)
[See H.M.C. Salisbury MSS, Vol. XVII, pp. 40 and 70.]