Border Papers volume 2: November 1598

Pages 573-578

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

This free content was digitised by double rekeying. All rights reserved.

Please subscribe to access the page scans

This volume has gold page scans.
Access these scans with a gold subscription.Key icon

In this section

1014. Sir John Carey to Secretary Cecil. [Nov. 2.]

Excusing himself for not writing sooner, since he came from Court, as he had been obliged to prolong his journey by business on the way, and had only now settled in Berwick. Giving thanks for the many favours received from the late Lord Treasurer, and offering service to the uttermost of his power to his son in return. Though he has given up intermeddling with all matters belonging to these northern parts or Scotland, leaving them to the Lord Governor, yet he will on notice from Mr Secretary, perform whatever he may command him: in other respects, not dealing in other men's offices, but endeavouring to discharge his own. Berwick. Signed: Jhon Carey.

1 p. Holograph. Indorsed: ". . . Mr John Carey to my master . . ." Wafer signet: damaged.

1015. Scrope to Secretary Cecil. [Nov. 4.]

I send you inclosed both Buccleuch's letter and his reasons for moving favour for the pledges: praying for her Majesty's pleasure therein and what answer I shall return? Though he keeps all quiet in his own office, "those that hurte this March are most at his comaundement."

I wish the Council would write such a letter to me as I might show him: that her Majesty is highly displeased at such outrages, which though small, toleration will make greater, and also intimate them to the King—for they are apt enough to complain to the Queen for the least matter.

If those mischievous reports by the Carletons had not made so deep an impression "above," calling in question those who should have helped to revenge them, these outrages had not been suffered so long. Thereby the honester men here are stricken with fear, also by the "brave ostentation" of such as I leave to the report of those who will give you knowledge of them. Meantime I most earnestly entreat you to procure me 50 soldiers from Berwick, and 6d. a day for 20 of them to serve on horseback, as I dare not commit the service "to this country-men"—directing warrant to the Lord Governor, or he will not send them. Rose. Signed: Th. Scroope.

pp. Holograph; also address. Indorsed.

Inclosed in the same:—

(1) (Buccleuch to Scrope.)

"Iff my desyr tuiching the pledges for Liddisdaell for their relaess and exchaindge, war nocht foundet mair upon good raesones, then the regaird off the persones, I vald nocht at all have entered or persisted in suche lyk; the consideratione quhairoff in myne auine opinione being most able to mak the conclusione for th'entrye off pledges in the last commissione most profitable and effectuall. I am the mor confident nocht to laeff off, thay being in particular thaess that I have set doune in this by noat, to escheue longsumnes, whice with a most syncer regaird unto the quyetnes off that part off the bordours, I doo recommend to generall censur, and your lordschip his furthering favour in particular. Quhairanent, expecting resolutione by your lordschip his good maenes with such conveniencye as may be, with most hartye and lafull commendationes, I tak my leeff. Braxhelm, the xxv off Octobre, 98." Signed: Baclughe.

½ p. Holograph; also address: "To the right honorable the Lord Scroope lord warden off the West Marches off England foranentes Scotland." Indorsed by Scrope. Wafer signet: a shield charged with a mullet and 2 crescents on a bend dexter, "W.S." at sides.

(2) Buccleuch's reasons (as in No. 956).

1 p. In a Scottish hand. Indorsed by Scrope.

1016. Sir R. Carey to Cecil. [Nov. 5.]

I have thought good to inform your honor of a design to take Lord Scrope's life, by some Englishmen, whose names I do not yet know. It was made known from two several quarters, and I think therefore more likely to be true. By the first, they mean to surprise him at Rose castle, "a place of no strength," and murder him: by the second, if they find him "weaklyest provyded," they will take his life either abroad or within doors. "Suerly Sir, yt ys the Greames and the Carltons that are thus malycyouslye bent agaynst my lord," and they can be but a small number, yet I cannot certainly learn the names of the chief workers. The parties who have told me dare not averr it openly, but I will do what I can to learn more, and if I can bring it to "a rype head," I will not fail to acquaint you. Meantime I have acquainted my lord Scrope, and given him my best advice how to beware of their villainy and look to his own person, but I fear he will be careless of himself: and I pray your honor in your next letter, to give him your good advice, and think it will make him more careful of his safety. Rose Castle. Signed: Ro. Carey.

1 p. Addressed. Indorsed. Quartered wafer signet: indistinct.

1017. Alexander King to Secretary Cecil. [Nov. 6.]

That you may be more fully satisfied touching the land sergeantship of Gilsland and of "the scite and demeanes of Askerton, heretofore graunted unto Thomas Carleton gentleman, deceased," I have here inclosed a true copy of the grant enrolled in my office, whereby it appears the said office was granted to him for his life, and the "scite" and demeane of Askerton for 21 years: "in which terme there was to come in June last past, 3 yeres." But whether the house and lands went always with the office, as it seems your honour is informed, I cannot say, for the last grant made was before the lands came to her Majesty's possession. This I know that Askerton house and castle is a house of good strength and defence, and the only house in Gilsland fit for the land sergeant to dwell in: and if "the present estate were determined," no man should have the house but the land sergeant.

My further opinion is that the officer should be a sufficient man to defend the country and the Queen's tenants, or they will be shortly undone, and neither able to serve under him, or pay her Majesty's rents. If not speedily cared for, it will breed discontentment among them, that though Queen's tenants, they are not now so well defended as in the Lord Dacre's time. Signed: Alexr. King.

pp. Addressed. Indorsed.

1018. Sir W. Bowes to Secretary Cecil. [Nov. 10.]

"By your lettres of 28 of the last, which came to my hands the 9 heerof, it is signified that her Majestie is not pleased, that I have been so small a while resident at Barwick: that your honor hath excused it by my long absence from my owne affayres in her Majesties employments: that now her highnes must use my service for some few months in Scotland as her ambassador, yett not so, butt that I may upon cause returne eyther to Barwick, or upon earnest occasion to my owne house: that your honor will therfore according to her Majesties pleasure, send me some instructions signed with her owne hand, and will procure me a privie seale for my diets and entertaignment, and cause the imprestes be made over to me if I send any person to receive direction: lastly, your honor conforteth me with her Majesties gracious conceipt of my discretion and integritie.

"Wherunto it may please your honor to receyve for answere: that beyond all exception I owe my soule to him that bought it dearly, and my hart with whatsoever it hath, unto her Majestie: resolving upon my uttermost endevour to pay these debts joynctly, so as both hope and happines shall concurre in one true poynct of dutie and right. Now bycause both the Author of goodnes, and her Majesties excelling clemencie, do usually admitt unto their vassals some place for deprecation," I humbly entreat you to present so much as you think fit of the following:—For my stay here a few weeks from Berwick, I find you conceived some part of the true reason, and seasonably notified it to her Majesty, and am bound to you in thanks. There was a further reason, springing out of her own service and my duty "to this my poore native cuntrie, namely—that I having commaundment and speciall charge over a great people inhabiting those mountainous parts, from the head to the half of the three rivers Tease, Weare, and Darwen, and finding the lamentable chaunge which hath lately hapned by Gods twoo sharp scourges of famine and pestilence, wherby verie many are falne from their wonted course of labour to stealing: I have been driven, aswell out of conscionable dutie, as out of respect to my owne estate, to bestowe some tyme heer amongst them; first attending the publique services at th'assyses, where appeared unto the judges the pitifull experience before mencioned, as upon conference with them, your honour may understand: being a matter (in my opinion) not unworthy high and gracious consideration of her Majestie and the State. Since that tyme, I have followed the courts, setting of watches, and more then necessary provision to withstand the theeves, who this other day, tooke three verie honest neighbours dwelling within 7 myles of me and 8 of Durham, and carrying them to their owne dwellings within the office of Bewcastle, laid them in irons to enforce them to ransome, untill by the Lord Scroops favour they were delivered. To the well-doing of this mountaine-people is joyned a good part of the livelyhood accrewing to my house, namely in matters of myning: wherin since my entrie, I and myne have so industriously laboured, that her Majesties port-records will wittnes we have profited her Majestie the realme and this people, with above 5000 fothers of lead, with small profit to our selves, by the too ordinarie cunning and straitnes of the merchant. Instantly I have in hand another triall, which beyond the profit to myself, conforteth me much with the publique good—namely making of steele, not inferiour (as I think) to the best of Christendome: a matter which the Kings of this realme have heertofore greatly priviledged to the forraine merchants of the steel-yard, as being indeed the principall instrument for arming of kingdomes. Heerin I have employed more money then were fitt for myne estate, yett doubt nothing to have it well recompenced, if it may please her Majestie to give lyfe to this beginning, which as it is hard in all good things, so is it verie hard in this, bycause no president affords skill by example, butt such as hath been, and must be beaten out by my owne travaile; for that of Wales is alltogether of another kynd, being made out of rawe-iron by art—butt myne is naturall out of the stone.

"Lett me entreate your honor pardon that I do tediously present these things unto you in zeale to that poore house which God hath given into my hands, which this 500 yeares hath stood in the same degree, and more then treble the revenue which it hath now—I having borne the heavie burthen of my fathers debts, with the disbursing (as I have often notified to my lord your father) of above 30,000li.: to the repaire of which my estate, seing her Majestie much burdened with sutes of manie better deservers then I am, I have sought only by my owne industrie, eyther by waie of marriage or by my earth-travells. For the former of these last mencioned, albeit I acknowledg the good grace of God, yett am I not therby enabled as the world conceyveth. Might I therfore, prostrate at her Majesties feet, appeale to that goodnes which I and all men taste of, so far foorth only, as my poore house graced by her owne mouth with that gracious word of (faithfull) might be pitied: I should the more cheerfully spend my self in her service such as I am, being indeed bound in dutie and truth to foresee that my weaknes prejudice not her highnes precious service. Heerin I must protest against my self, that my weak sight disableth me for writing: that my trayning up hath been altogether estraunged from high State-matters, or the presence of princes, accept this litle employment of late; that besides my naturall inclination, I have of religion cherished a rondeur and playnenes of that which I think true, "such as I know not how it will fitt the high place of an ambassador. Only by experience I know it fitteth not the humour of that people wherunto her Majestie allotteth my service."

But not to be troublesome, I will present to your honour in a few days such particulars on my own behalf, as I humbly refer to her Majesty's consideration, with the continuance of your favour therein. Bradley. Signed: Will'm Bowes.

pp. Holograph. Addressed. Indorsed.

1019. Scrope to Cecil. [Nov. 12.]

This day I received the Scottish King's letter and send a copy inclosed. I have already asked you for the Queen's pleasure how to demean myself to Johnston now banished, and having no answer yet, considering the difficulty of the premises, urgently beg for direction, as my father ever had in like cases. "As she is my loade starr," so will my actions be wholly directed by her. Rose. Signed: Th. Scroope.

1 p. Holograph; also address. Indorsed.

Inclosed in the same:—

(James vi. to Scrope.)

The bearer the Laird of Johnston, passing forth of our country within the realm of England by our special knowledge and licence, to remain there a certain time, we recommend him to your favourable regard, that he may under your protection and safeconduct repair, pass and repass within the bounds of your office, and where "utermost" your good means may extend to his safeguard. Palace of Holyrudhouse 28 October 1598. James R.

¾ p. Copy apparently by Scrope. Addressed at foot. Indorsed.

1020. Sir R. Carey to the Council. [Nov. 18.]

According to your directions I have sent Mr Woodrington and Mr Fenwyck to the Bishop of Durham, to remain during her Majesty's pleasure: hoping your honors will be a mean to her highness, that their imprisonment may be a very short time, for this poor country cannot be without them long. The policy of the Scottish borderers is to "anymate" their King against these two gentlemen, not so much for the late affair (a very small offence here abouts), but because they are the only men in this March under me, that oppose all evildoers, "and packes not neyther pawlters with Scots" as the country do, and thus they work with the King for their removal, which is the "marke they shoote at." God forbid it should be so, for "uppon my credyt, my lords," there are none such left, and they deserve thanks rather than discouragement—for the times are such that every gentleman in Northumberland seeks the Scots thief's favour and have long paid "blackmeale" as they call it; while the poor men that cannot, are continually spoiled. It is very true as your lordships write, that the Scots have been long used to hunt without licence: but so have they been used to rob and spoil, and think it their "inherytance," scorning all opposition. But now they see another course taken with them, and "that their kyngdome ys lyke to fall," they are glad to get this little occasion to work upon, knowing no other way to restore their practices, but to get me and my officers disgraced. If your honours had known the great hurt this country is like to receive by their imprisonment, you would have advised her Majesty to another course. For let me speak without ostentation, since my coming, this long broken country is in some better state: for the English thief, as bad or worse than the Scot, steals no more, and the Scot dare not do as before, and I expected great quietness shortly in my office if this imprisonment does not hinder it. Then I shall be a very unfit man to remain, for I cannot "temporyse" with the Scots or permit their liberty as hitherto. If it please your honours to give leave to myself or Mr Woodrington to come up and answer before you, I will prove that for every man they want, the Queen may call for 20 of her subjects slain in worse manner. Alnwick. Signed: Ro. Carey.

pp. Addressed. Indorsed. Swan wafer signet.

1021. Willoughby to Cecil. [Nov. 21.]

With the inclosed packet, I must advertise you that these packets "addressed by you to pass by mee, are often of very late date, som seven or eight dayes in cominge, sometymes torne and fowle." I take care to convey them as befits such matters of importance. I have no occurrence to report. Berwick. Signed: P. Wyllughby.

½ p. Addressed. Indorsed. Wax signet: the device broken.

1022. Sir W. Bowes to Cecil. [Nov. 21.]

While on the late commission, especially at the meeting near the West ford, I conferred with Sir John Carey then governor of Berwick and Mr Selby the gentleman porter, and had great assistance and advice there, especially from the latter, whom I repute the best experienced borderer in these parts. I committed "Baclugh" to his charge, and he showed great discretion in the tumult, providing for Bacluch's safety and government of the bands of Berwick. On our return, Mr Governor and I thought it best to commit Baclugh to the house and keeping of Mr Selby, promising to signify this to your honor, and to recommend to her Majesty, an allowance at her pleasure for Baclugh's diet, if he continued with him any time. I being required to signify the premises to your honor, and that Baclugh "remayned with him all the tyme of his abode in England, therby having putt him to great charges," I humbly recommend the gentleman and his cause for such allowance as her Majesty pleases. Berwick. Signed: Will'm Bowes.

1 p. Addressed. Indorsed.

1023. Sir W. Bowes to the three wardens. [Nov. 21.]

Informing them that in June last he attended before her Majesty and the Council to report his dealings on the Border commission and with the King of Scots—which he laid before them in writing, with sundry propositions how the treaty might be brought to good conclusion. Whereon their lordships after sundry sittings, set down their consultations on every head "written by the hand of th'Erle of Essex in the absence of Mr Secretary then in Fraunce." As the expected fruits however of the commission do not yet appear, he recommends the wardens so far as in their power, to arrange meetings with their opposites, at which the bills filed by the late commissioners may be sworn to and made fixed debts, which would be a step towards performance of her Majesty's service, and clear the question as to detention of the pledges, who he thinks her Majesty cannot in justice detain for unknown debts. Berwick.

pp. Copy by his clerk. Indorsed.