Border Papers volume 2: October 1598

Pages 563-573

Calendar of Border Papers: Volume 2, 1595-1603. Originally published by Her Majesty's Stationery Office, London, 1896.

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999. Sir R. Carey to Cecil. [Oct. 6.]

By your letter of 29th September received the 4th instant "late in the night," I understand her Majesty's pleasure to be informed "by whome, from whome, and in what manner, those wordes of obedyence and duty were spoken"? This was as follows:—After I had sent to the warden for assur ance, and that as accustomed I would meet him at the March "(which in that place was in the myddes of the water)" and then with him enter Scotland, he sent word by four of his company that I was to come over the water to the dry land of Scotland and he would there receive me. Some dispute arising between me and them, at last one of them "John Ker of Corbet house, sayd of himself, not from Sir Robert Ker, and he spoke yt to me, that yt was an obedyence England ought to Scotland, ever scynce a warden of theirs was slayne at a day of trew by us, one of Sir Robert Ker his ancestors; and at that instant, another of them called Androw Ker of Rocksbrough, sayd to Roger Woodryngton, Sandy Fenwyck and others of my companye, that scynce that tyme we have ought them that dutye." This was the manner of their uttering, and it made me more "kuryous" to yield. I have made inquiry of the best and oldest borderers as to the manner of the wardens' meeting, and they concur that we are to go into Scotland, and end our causes of meeting there. "But the manner of our meeting ys the thing in questyon: it ys for certen that Sir Wylliam Drurye when he was warden of the East Marche, never met but in the mydstreame; and after meeting there he went into Scotland. The gentleman Porter dyd avow there before the Scotes that he had seene his brother meete in the myd streame with Sir Robert Kers father; and so dyd a sonn of Sir John Selbyes lykewyse affyrme. Dyvers gentlemen of the Myddle Marche dyd there avowe that they had seene Sir John Foster do the lyke.

"The Scotes wold allow none of this, but brought in proofes of latter tyme how that Sir John Selby, Sir John Foster and my Lord Eure, in their tymes dyd contynually comme into Scotland a good peece before they weare mett with the wardens of Scotland: which I thinke to be trew, for the two Sir Johns being growne old men and loving their ease and quyet, knowing that they were to go into Scotland, of latter yeares respected not the meeting at the Marche, but went over into Scotland to them; and my lord Eurey after their example dyd the lyke." And the Scots are so good natured, that "yf we geve them an inche they wyll take an ell"! and would have us follow the later custom. But as the ancient borderers think the first meeting should be the very March, and the business determined in Scotland, I see no reason to yield more than is due: yet if her Majesty's pleasure be that I go over before we meet, I will obey, having discharged my duty. Signed: Ro. Carey.

pp. Addressed. Indorsed. Quartered wafer seal: indistinct.

1000. Willoughby to Cecil. [Oct. 8.]

On the 6th instant I received your packet, and on 7th the inclosed from Mr Nicholson, which I now send. "Upon the suden," I cannot digest those particulars whereof you write, as is meet: so I pray you excuse me, and so soon as I can put in order the things required (I trust by the next messenger) you shall hear. If any thing for you from Captain Boyer or any other, come to my hand, I shall not fail to send it with care and speed. Berwick. Signed: P. Wyllughby.

½ p. Addressed. Indorsed. Quartered wafer signet.

1001. Sir W. Bowes to Cecil. [Oct. 10.]

In answer to your letter of 29th September, for my opinion on the old controversy as to Border meetings, lately renewed between Sir Robert Carey and Sir Robert Kerr, I conceive it stands on these heads.—(1) The usual manner, and which prince sends first; (2) what grounds it has? (3) the best course for her Majesty and safety of her realm; and (4) what reasons may be insisted on with the present ambassador to effect this honourable course. My answer to these is from tradition and report, or what I have myself experienced.

Border meetings seem to me of two kinds—(1) ordinary, between the wardens or deputies for common justice; (2) the other more solemn, as between commissioners sent for leagues, treaties of peace, or misconduct of wardens. They differ in kind and observance, yet agree in others, viz., taking assurance: meeting at the place, and sitting in some church or town for business: also that assurance usually, by the English going in, is demanded and taken first, immediately after, the Scots demanding and receiving the like of ours. They differ more in other two points, viz., the most principal commissioners have kept their meetings on the "verie marche lyne," and for their session, mostly, not always, at Berwick or Carlisle. Ordinary meetings and sessions usually in Scottish ground, except when by the wardens' agreement, transferred for conveniency to a frontier town. I find from "auncient" men, this was the usage, drawn from the practice of the first Lord Wharton and Sir Robert Bowes, two of the most expert borderers within memory. "An auncient gentleman folower of Sir Robert Bowes, telleth me that he carried a great meetinge thus: both parties beinge drawne neare the Marche lyne, Sir Robert stepped forward unto the Scottish syde audiblie speakinge these wordes—'I will loose the Kinge my master no grounde,' cleanly coveringe the necessitie of his entry hereby. Touchinge my owne experience, I served vijon yeares deputie to my noble father in lawe Henrie lord Scroope, all which tyme wee made no question both to demaunde assuraunce first, and to sitt in the Scottishe grounde; except yt were of courtisie that the Scottishe officer came to Carlisle."

When I was one of the Queen's commissioners to try the tumult at Cocklawe where Lord Russell was slain, though I urged stricter standing, yet I could not prevail with Henry lord Scroope and Sir John Selby, for they first met on Scottish ground, and kept every session in Foulden church, a mile beyond the Bound road. But at the last commission we were so "warie," that the Bishop of Durham being not well at ease, sent me to meet the Scottish commissioners, which I did at the "verie rode" and stepped "my length" into Scotland, on condition they relinquished sitting at Fowlden and sat with us at Berwick, which they did. Then the King and Council trying to transfer the end of the treaty to Dumfries, we drew them to Carlisle, where at finishing, they urged the clause that next treaty should be kept in Scotland; which (with some show of "curiositie") yet we willingly agreed to, for a "president against them of record."

(2) For the ground of so yielding. It is held by tradition on the Borders, that when a war between the realms ended, the Scots must first demand peace. During peace, at ordinary meetings, the English must first demand assurance. Your honor may learn better on this from the heralds, than our report of tradition. Another ground is imputed to the slaughter of Sir Robert Kerr, great grandfather to this Cesford, slain within English ground by one Starrhead servant to Sir William Heron the English warden, who though not present that day was delivered into Scotland by "that noble and just prince" King Henry 7th, yet they say the Scots swore they would never after come on English ground for justice, and by the King's sufferance this course has grown. A third ground I have heard (if I forget not) from the late worthy Lord Treasurer, was an ancient privilege granted by both princes to a monastery "at or neare the Ladie Kirke," now a good distance within reputed Scottish ground, supposed to be builded upon the ground, of old and to this day called "Debateable grounde," where from its peaceable motions the princes were content to meet on all occasions of "interperlaunce" and treaty. This point about the debateable ground, carefully looked to in times past, and as I hear, "precisely boundered" by King Henry 8th, is now so neglected that continual mischief arises, for the English borders being more and more dispeopled, the Scots either plant houses, or keep their summer "sheildingis, or stafheard" their cattle, or cut wood, or hunt at pleasure, to her Majesty's dishonour: now as an instance is complained of, interrupting the good quiet begun and rejoiced at, but now fallen to nightly spoiling as before.

(3) For the best course—my opinion is that if no treaty or record is found to bind her Majesty, I see not why common error should prejudice her rights or safety of her people: especially when weighty occasions press for reform—as in these vain words reported by Sir Robert Carey, "too bigge for any Scottishe mowth," or in the treacherous tumults and slaughters at the Readswyer, Cocklawe, Westfourd, and the like, chiefly as this custom forces her officers and people to take Scottish trust; which I would reform by first fixing the very line dividing the two realms; and then one realm at one time, and the other at the next, may in turn demand assurance, and keep their sessions of justice interchangeably.

Lastly—for the reasons to move the opposites to yield to reformation—what I gather, is, that either their challenge is grounded on "covenant of record" between the princes, or on customary prescription: I doubt not, but either there is no such record, or if there be, it will justify the Queen's honor, as showing how the yielding grew. If they stand on prescription: there can be none against the right of an "absolute Kinge"; neither in a private person "by the civill lawe, by which their nation is governed (as I take it) can there be usucapio (fn. 1) where there is defect of bona fides (fn. 1) in the beginninge." If challenged of courtesy, I think it forfeited by the indignity of these words of persons sent by the warden who represented the King.

Lastly I have urged on sundry Scots "of best place" that this course is to their disadvantage; for (1) they fail in the confidence a valiant nation should show, to set foot (if allowed) on strange ground, as we do; (2) they have shown too many precedents, of bad faith, breach or weakness, in breaking their assurances; and (3) our entry being at their instance, if any violence fall out, we cannot be charged with invasion; while they if they pursue, it necessarily breaks all leagues and treaties. So I see not how honor or judgment can lead them to insist.

In your postscript you ask my opinion on delivery of the Scottish pledges, so earnestly urged, with greater promises by other means, and little hope of good by this. I have been earnestly solicited by Cesford and others to favour that suit: but I have answered that the cause which brought them in must be "counterpoized" with as good to get them out, and private reasons cannot bring it about. But I must defer this to my next, for it requires longer discourse, and I have been too tedious already. Bradley. Signed: Will'm Bowes.

pp. Addressed. Indorsed. Wafer signet (Bowes).

1002. William Selby on March Meetings. [Oct.]

The manner of meetings betwixt the English and Scottish wardens and their deputies, "ever since the peace taken in the end of the nyne yeares warres, as also betwixt ther commissioners."

The first meeting was at the Spielawe in Scotland, after the peace taken in the time of Sir William Ewrie great grandfather to this Lord Ewrie, and lord warden of the East March. Sir Nicholas Stirley was next warden, then Lord Ewrie this lord's father, next Lord Conyers, and then Lord Whartoun, in which lord's time "the two yeares warres began"; during which the Earl of Northumberland was lord warden, and after him Lord Gray. In these times the ordinary places of meeting was Reddanburne for the English East March, and Scottish Middle March, sometimes Etall and Carrham in England, and Kelsey and Reddan in Scotland. The English and Scottish deputy wardens have taken and given justice at these places respectively. And the wardens themselves have met at Reddanburne which parts the countries, and gone together into Scots ground and done justice on both sides. In the Earl of Bedford's time who succeeded Lord Gray, he met the Earl of Murray at the said burne both "in the verie strand," and so into Scots ground together. I have been "eye witnesse of these meatinges my self," attending my father who was deputy warden to all the above, except the Earl of Northumberland, whose brother Sir Henry Percie was deputy warden. Lastly, Lord Hunsdoun to whom my brother Sir John Selbie was deputy warden for 30 years, used the same form in meeting the Scots, "but never in Etall or Kelsey all that time."

For commissions betwixt the princes: I have seen the commissioners meet at "the Ladie churche in Scotland and Norrham churche in England; at Barrwick and Fowldoun, and the Scotes commissioners have comd unto Barrwick and staied all or most parte of ther commission"; as when Sir John Foster and Sir John Selbie, for the Queen, met Sir John Carmikell and Mr Alexander Hume and other Scots. And when the Earl of Rutland as principal for her Majesty, met the Earl of Bothwell for the King, Bothwell lay in Berwick during the commission; as did the Scots, in the last commission when the Bishop of Durham was principal for her Majesty, and the Bishop of Duukeld for Scotland.

"Your lordship desires to be resolved concerning the arrestes made oute of the Marche":

In my father's time as deputy, one Black was arrested by the warden sergeant in Durham, to answer the day trew and did so. Also one Thomas Clarke a man of great wealth, was arrested in Darnton in Bishopric, and appeared at the day trew. And when my brother Sir John was deputy, one Spaine at Gatesyde was arrested—which the then bishop and justices opposed and wrote to the Council against his answering out of the liberties—whose letter was sent to my brother, answered by him to the Council, and Spaine sent to answer at the day trew. One Brewhouse an Englishman, was arrested by the warden sergeant for stealing goods in Scotland, to answer at the day trew. Before it came, he was apprehended for felony, stealing cloth out of a shop in Berwick; Sir John Selbie sent to the mayor for him to answer at the day trew in discharge of the Queen and warden. "Yf he had bin executed, then hir Majesty was to paye the Scotes the whole valew which he had stollen: and so Sir John Selbie receaved the prisonner accordinglie." He sent him into Scotland, indented in writing with the Scots warden to keep him 40 days, and if he did not satisfy then, that he should hang him or else re-deliver him to Sir John—and if he did pay the goods, yet he was to be delivered to Sir John, and by him to the mayor. Signed: Will'm Selby.

pp. Indorsed by Cecil's clerk: "1598 Oct. Mr Selbyes opinion concerning the meetinges on the Borders."

1003. Sir John Forster on March Meetings. [Oct.]

The times of the meetings for 37 years between Sir John Forster then lord warden of the Middle March, and the opposite wardens.

"Somtime I went to him into Scotland, somtime hee to me as the conveniencie of the place served: in winter if the weather served not, somtime I sent my deputie to Yatam, somtime he sent to Kirkneuton, ther to determine of causes." When I was first a commissioner, the Scots came first to Carlisle, and after, we to Dumfries, and there set down our agreements in writing.

In divers other commissions, sometimes we went into Scotland, some times they into England, "as wee could agree of the fitnesse of the place." Signed: John Forster.

½ p. Indorsed by Cecil's clerk.

1004. Alexander King to Cecil. [Oct. 10.]

In answer to your honor's inquiries, who commands the Queen's tenants in Graistock and how he got it, what gentlemen are fit for the landsergeantcy of Gilsland, and what belongs to keeping Bewcastle? One Thomas Preston of Furnes in the county of Lancaster esquire, has the marshal government of the Queen's tenants in the barony of Graistock; to whom it was granted by Phillip, late Earl of Arundell, the Lord William Howard, and their wives in 21st Elizabeth, for the term of his life, with a fee of 6l. 13s. 4d. yearly. Preston made one William Hutton gentleman his deputy, who died about 2 years last past; and whether Mr Preston has since made one Dudley mentioned in your letter, his deputy, is altogether unknown to me. For the next point, I know no person fit for the office of Gilsland, craving pardon therein, as your honor may best be informed therein by the Lord Warden who has best knowledge. He ought to be one well affected to do loyal service to her Majesty without respect of any other, and see that her tenants are well furnished for service.

For Bewcastle: her Majesty in her 32d year, granted to Sir Simon Musgrave knight, and Thomas Musgrave his son for the term of their two lives, Plumpton park with all rents, &c., being 168l. 7s. per annum "absque compo[to] seu aliquo inde reddendo. And as I take it, they have moreover as incident and belonging to the said office of captain of Bewcastle, all the rentes, demeane landes and tithes of Bewcastle, which I have hard to be better worth than" 100l. a year. I know not that he is allowed or keeps any men in pay there. This is as much as I can certify your honor. Signed: Alexr. King.

pp. Indorsed: ". . . Mr Audytor King to my master. His second certificat concerning the lande sergeantshipp of Gillsland."

1005. Notes on the office of Gilsland. [Oct.]

[A copy of a former paper on the duties, fees, &c., of the land sergeant; with a memorandum as to Graistock as in the preceding letter.]

pp. Written and indorsed by Cecil's clerk.

1006. Scrope to Cecil. [Oct. 11.]

Though I doubt not but out of the objections and answers touching Mr Woodrington's service at the late hunting in Redesdale, you have discerned the truth "(be the informations never so diferent)"; yet I think it my part to say what I find, and speak it faithfully, that as it was done for the honor of her Majesty and defence of her long abused "royalties," worthily backed by him and his friends to their great charges and nightly toil, it is the chief cause of the peace and forbearance of spoil in the Middle March. So that if the lords have careful regard to these men and their service, that March will stand and not fall, to the people's comfort.

The Carletons still refuse possession to John Musgrave, of the house, demesne and mills. Their Scottish kindred made a road there lately, and though the land sergeant wants a house, yet he so followed the fray, that he rescued most part of the goods. But this state of things breeds confusion, 'which might be remedied by a worde under your hand to them." I write not to my lord of Essex till I have some special matter.

I know not what reports are given of the state of this March. I have no cause yet "to mourne"; but "rumors are swift messengers, and speake boldly though blindly afarr of; for within short waye of our owne home, if it be but in the nexte shire, or at Barwike, they will dilate the newes of thinges that never were." Rose Castle. Signed: Th. Scroope.

pp. Holograph; also address. Indorsed. Wax seal: fragment.

1007. Scrope to Cecil. [Oct. 16.]

"At the earnest request of the lord Baclugh" I met him this day at Rocklief, where though his pretence was to do justice, yet in the end it was only to procure some favour for the pledges. He will put in writing his offers, which I shall send to you shortly, viz., to be answerable for all spoils to be done by them and theirs, if he may have their sons accepted in their stead, and themselves set at large, yet always forthcoming upon call. This course would greatly "redounde" to our benefit here.

He came through the Grames who were all assembled, and to dishonour me more, "made as though they would have apprehended him," though they knew I had given him assurance. "I told him he had ventured farr, and wished him to beare with the Grames, for that they could not yet leave thire hypocrisie." He told me that the lord Johnstoun is to be banished from Scotland presently, and would refuge with me; I would be glad to hear how he stands with her Majesty's favor, and how I shall demean myself towards him? There is a bruit of "a Portugalois a coyner," lurking at a gentleman's house to whom one Arthur Grame carries Scottish news to and fro. I will apprehend him ere it be long.

I request you to take no notice of my meeting with Baclughe: because so soon as he has drawn and sent me his articles, I will write to the Council. Meantime you may do me a great favor by letting me know how her Majesty will accept of his offers: for unless she likes them, I would deal no further.

I have asked my lord Chamberlain to move at the Council table that the Carletons may be commanded to put up their complaints against the land sergeant of Gilsland "on Sunday come sevenight, where he shalbee to answere for himselfe." You shall then see how notoriously they have abused him. Rose Castle. Signed: Th. Scroope.

2 pp. Holograph; also address. Indorsed.

1008. Scrope to Cecil. [Oct. 17.]

"I receaved even nowe your lettre bearing date the 10th of this instant, wherby I understand her Majesties dislike of Jhon Musgrave by reason of such complaintes as have bene exeebited against him: for the answering wherof, he shall goe up shortly."

The Grames report here that Lancelot Carleton shall return land sergeant of Gilsland, and greatly boast thereof, offering "to laye greate oddes that it shalbe soe." But I repose too great trust in your favor, and cannot believe that such an adversary to the country and me shall have that place.

It is to be proved that the Carletons are guilty of the last spoil in Gilsland: therefore before he gets it, I will come up and prostrate myself before her Majesty to let her know what a miserable case that country will be in if the chief spoilers of it be ordained rulers.

Thus resting on your kindness to suspend any further grant of the office till John Musgrave have answered for himself. Rose Castle. Signed: Th. Scroope.

1 p. Holograph; also address. Indorsed.

1009. William Selby to Secretary Cecil. [Oct. 18. 1598.]

I sent the packet to George Nycholsoun, which came with your letter dated 29th of June, but as yet have had no answer from him as I expected. Berwick. Signed: Will'm Selby.

¼ p. Addressed. Indorsed.

1010. Willoughby to Cecil. [Oct. 18.]

I deferred these few days to answer your letter of 29th September, received 7th instant, that I might more fully satisfy you. First—as to meeting in English or Scottish ground, the difference has not arisen from the "curiositie or ceremonyes" of the Queen's officers, but from the "insolency" of the opposites, who have stood on these niceties in two respects, (1) as a kind of duty by prerogative of antiquity and custom; and (2) for the death of a Scottish gentleman, one of the Kerrs, wherefore ever since the days of truce should be held in Scotland. If so, it is like the first reason is not so ancient as they pretend, and it concludes that until that time the meeting was on our side. "For other antiquities and prerogatives, the Scottes histories do yeld sufficient testimony how far into England they have come to doe their homage to this crowne: besydes in the ancient and moderne treaties yt is concluded and subscribed by the commissioners of both partes, that prioritie is geven to our soveraine in the forefront of such treaties. And as yt hath been answered to some of them, this latter tyme maketh more difference then heeretofore, by as much more as the receiver is tyed to the bountie and liberalitie of the geiver, then the geiver to his necessetie that receives yt." I omit to answer of the place her Majesty's ambassadors hold in all foreign nations. If the death of Kerr is to draw us to that side, we may now urge for ours the deaths of Sir George Heron, Sir Francis Russell, "th'endangering" of Sir John Foster, and now this present year, the "unseemly" carrying away of Sir William Bowes the Queen's ambassador.

Lastly, to prove these meetings have not been always on their side, I have collected and send inclosed "these gentlemens observations and practises. (fn. 2) It may please you also to call Mr William Selby of Kent before you, who can say mutch in this as I am informed."

What I propounded as to damming up the fords of Norham, &c., if it please her Majesty, can be so performed; but I am loth to show the reasons in my absence, and shall give them if her Majesty permits my repair southwards, which I hope by your means may be towards Easter next, as it will be very requisite for her service.

I have no other news except that Sir Robert Kerr has twice "speered" out and delivered offenders (unknown to me) to be punished at my discretion, a thing unknown on these Marches for many years. Berwick. Signed: P. Wyllughly.

"Sir William Bowes is absent or els I had sent you his opinion also."

pp. Addressed. Indorsed.

1011. Scrope to Cecil. [Oct. 20.]

I received your letter mentioning the objections to John Musgrave preferred by me to her Majesty as a fit man for the office of Gilsland: which is not my judgment only, but of all the gentlemen, &c., of the country except the Lowthers and Carletons and their adherents. These informations proceed from no zeal for the state, but on displeasure to me, and malice to his getting the office they had, and seek to have "for thire owne lucre," which would be the undoing of the country. "But to the perticullers; first, Jhon Musgrave is not cosen germayne to Francis Dacre, but his grandmother was a base daughter of the lord Thomas Dacre which was grandfather to Francis Dacre, and so of no kindred to him in lawe. Neyther did the sayde Francis Dacre use him or his father in any frendship as his kinsmen, but contrariwise I know, and so it is of most men heere, that one Unfrey Musgrave a gentleman of good estimation in our countrey, uncle to this Jhon Musgrave, somtymes deputie warden to my lord my father, upon whom this Jhon Musgrave did depend, served, and therby was trayned up in service upon the Borders, had alwayes dislikinge of the sayd Francis Dacres dooinges from his begininge, and were in displeasure untill the death of the sayd Unfrey Musgrave: neyther have I hearde of any partakinge or favoringe of any of the Dacres by any of the Musgraves, but were allwayes most earnest against them, whensoever they attempted any thinge against thire loyaltie." And if I was not certain of his valour and honesty in the Queen's service, I would not have taken in hand what I have done for him. It is true he married Mr Dudley's daughter: but I know Mr Dudley "to be an honest and sound gentleman, zealous in religion, a man of good callinge, heire to Richard Dudley, and neveu both to Jhon and Thomas Dudley, gentlemen well knowen to her Majestie and the lordes of the Counsell; one whom Gerard Louther departed, did allwayes use against Francis Dacre and his actions: and very well knowen both to mee and the whole countrey, havinge a fatherly care to bringe up his ealdest sonne in learninge both at the Universitie, and afterwardes at the Innes of Courte for his good, where his sayd sonne was drawne to such courses as have tended to his owne overthrow and his fathers griefe. Wherupon the sayd Mr Dudley hath not only ever since refused him, but also disinherited him, assuringe the livinge to his yonger sonne by fyne and recoverie, whom he matched in mariage with Mr Jhon Middletons daughter, a gentleman knowen to have bene most zealous in religion." When Mr Dudley was made a justice of peace as he well deserves, and received his oath by the last judges, he told them the truth touching his said son "the Jesuite," and I have heard him protest that he has never seen him since, and will have no more dealing with him than "with a Jewe." And is as earnest against him as any man in our country.

For John Musgrave's ability: "He is proceeded of the house of Ednell, the best house of the Musgraves, of a younger brother: who is one of greate frendship in the countrey, his owne livinge being a customarie holde, of fortie pounds per anno—many in this our countrey do live well, maintayninge a gentlemans estate, of lesser livinge." Carleton, who had the office, had not an equal livinge of his own and dwelt farther from Gilsland than Musgrave. But after getting the office, they always removed to Askerton which belongs to it, and dwelt on their charge.

I commit these to your wise consideration. Rose Castle. Signed: Th. Scroope.

pp. Holograph; also address. Indorsed: ". . . Lord Scroope to my master. An aunswere to your honors lettre of her Majesties dislyke of John Musgrave to be lande sergeant of Gillesland."

1012. Scrope to Cecil. [Oct. 27.]

I already informed you how the lord Johnston is shortly to be banished, and desires "to refugiat" himself here, and would not to be troublesome to you, were it not his pressing me, as his inclosed letter will show. But I would grant him nothing till I hear from you of her Majesty's pleasure.

I send such news as "even now" I have. You may see thereby "the practises of the Grames who, as it seemeth, would set up a privat comonwelth by constituting lawes: which yet, so longe as they be good, may best "bee tollerated, howsoever they do it without my privitie. But so long as they please the Quene, I am therwith well content, howbeit I feare they make but a shew therof." Signed: Th. Scroope.

1 p. Holograph; also address. Indorsed.

Inclosed in the same:—(Johnston to Scrope.)

"Being at his Majestes command to remuif out of Scotland in England, I haif thocht guid to desyr of your lordschip be this my letter that I may haif your lordschipis freindschip indoring my remaning, as lykwayis in respect of the many courtesseis I haif ressavit at your lordschip heirtofor, I think I will charg your lordschip first of any: desyring your lordschip that be your procuirment I may haif the Quenis Majestes letter of protectioun purchessit to travell saif in the cuintre, and in respect your lordschip is the first, I dout nocht bot your lordschip will the mair willingle schaw me this courtessie. For albeit I may haif freindschip of wtheris, I wilbe oblisit rather to your lordschip nor any wther in Ingland; and will desyr be your lordschip ansuer with the berar, quhat I sall louk for, as lykwayis quhair I sall find your lordschip about this day aucht or ten dayis . . . Of the Lochwod the xxv of October." Signed: Johnestoune.

¾ p. Holograph; also address: "To the rycht honorable my rycht assurit frend lefullie me lord Skrup warden over the West Merche." Indorsed by Scrope.

1013. Lancelot Carleton on the West Border. [Oct.]

The state of the West March, standing at present dangerously affected, practised by Francis Dacre, "Dudlaye the Jessuwyt, ande a symmonarye preast": which may be prevented and assured strength brought to the state.

(1) Carlisle castle, the lord warden's seat, a place of great strength. (On margin)—Standing at present waste, without relief or countenance to the Queen's tenants.

(2) Bewcastle castle, the nearest strength to Scotland, ancient land of her Majesty's, the captain having above 200l. fee of her, and leading some 300 of her tenants.

(On margin)—It standeth at the King of Scots' pleasure, for Thomas Musgrave the captain has offered to deliver it to him.

(3) The tenants of her Majesty's barony of Gillesland, parcel of the late Lord Dacre's possessions, about 400 in number, dangerously affected to Francis Dacre.

(On margin)—Those tenants are under the leading of John Musgrave who is "cossinge gearmayn to Franssis Dacre and haythe marriede Dudlaye the Jessuwyt sister."

(4) The tenants of her Majesty's barony of Graistok parcel of the said Dacre possessions, and about 400, "at this present assuredly affectinge Franssis Dacre," are under the leading of Mr Edmund Dudley father of Dudley the Jesuit, and an old servant of the late Lord Dacre.

(On margin)—It is specially to be noted "how cuningly this geare is handlede:" Dudley the father has the leading of the Queen's tenants in Graistok, and Musgrave his son in law of those in Gilsland—all which tenants rose in arms with Leonard Dacre against her Majesty, and are at present deeply affected to Francis Dacre—as also the tenants of her barony af Brughe.

(5) These tenants of Brughe, also parcel of the Dacre possessions, about 300, are under leading of Mr Harrye Leaghe "a man I do feare is no ennymy to Dacre."

(6) The body of the West March gentlemen with their commands and attendants are mostly affected to Francis Dacre and have lately entered into a most dangerous combination by oath and league. It is credibly reported that the first part of their oath is to keep secret what shall be propounded among them: and second, "that whatsoever any of theas leagars shall tayk in hande, all the reste to joyn with thaym even to the deathe."

(On margin)—The principals of this league are Mr Edmund Dudley the Jesuit's father, Mr William Hutton and Mr Thomas Hutton cousins german to Dacres, Mr Christofer Pickeringe, Mr Richard Sandfurth, old servants and favourers of the house of Dacre, and all of them justices of peace, Androwe Hilton "a perillous reacusant, with divers others."

(7) These dangerous practices "weare put in usse" in the life of Garrarde Lowther the Queen's sworn servant, who looking deeply into them, and intending to come up and acquaint her Majesty thereof, rode to Carlisle thinking to have got a letter there lately come from Francis Dacre, and laid open their practices: but while at Carlisle he sickened and presently died—"by what means the Lorde knowyth! but it is vearaly to be suppossede he was poyssoned."

(On margin)—Mr Garrard Lowther getting some intelligence of the beginning of these plots, "did about Midsomer 97 drawe a noot of the saym ande gave a coppy thearof unto Lancillot Carleton whiche coppy by chansse came to the hands of Mr Secratory": and if examined, will open the intent of their enterprises.

(8) In support of the scheme, Francis Dacre is at present renewing the old alliance betwixt the Dacre's house and the Lord Maxwell's house of Scotland, in seeking to conclude a marriage betwixt his son and Lord Maxwell's sister. It is reported in Scotland that he has promised the King (fn. 3) . . .

Helps to prevent these dangers.

1. An assured man of worth and quality as lord warden, to live in and maintain Carlisle castle as it requires.

2. All inferior officers to be such as will be a strength to the Queen's subjects, and men known to be "clear without the compas" of the Scottish or Dacres' factions.

3. These dangerous "leagars" to be sought for without favour and deeply examined.

All which if duly executed, matters will be so changed that her Majesty may have 5000 strong to resist any sudden attempt of the Scot, and settle this part of England which is a harbour for Jesuits, who come and go at pleasure, through the insufficiency of Lord Scrope's government, from foreign countries and back without check or danger. Signed: Lancillot Carleton.

3 pp. Holograph. Indorsed by Cecil's clerk.


  • 1. The Latin written by Bowes.
  • 2. Next sentence added on margin by Willoughby.
  • 3. Paper torn away.