« PreviousContinue »
Also to sum up and contract, is a thing in action of very general use.
CX. Sir FRANCIS BACON to Mr. MATTHEW, Sir Tobie about his writings, and the death of a friend. Matthew's
THE reason of so much time taken before my answer to yours of the fourth of August, was chiefly by accompanying my letter with the paper which here I send you; and again, now lately, not to hold from you till the end of a letter, that which by grief may, for a time, efface all the former contents, the death of your good friend and mine A. B. to whom because I used to send my letters for conveyance to you, it made me so much the more unready in the dispatch of them. In the mean time I think myself, howsoever it hath pleased God otherwise to bless me, a most unfortunate man, to be deprived of two, a great number in true friendship, of those friends, whom I accounted as no stage-friends, but private friends, and such, as with whom I might both freely and safely communicate, him by death, and you by absence. As for the memorial of the late deceased queen, I will not question whether you be to pass for a disinterested man or no; I freely confess myself am not, and so I leave it. As for my other writings, you make me very glad of your approbation; the rather, because you add a concurrence in opinion with others; for else I might have conceived, that affection would, perhaps, have prevailed with you, beyond that, which, if your judgment had been neat and free, you could have esteemed. And as for your caution, touching the dignity of ecclesiastical persons, I shall not have cause to meet with them any otherwise, than in that some schoolmen have, with excess, advanced the authority of Aristotle. Other occasion I shall have none. But now I have sent you that only part of the whole writing, which may perhaps have a little harshness and provocation in it: although I may almost secure myself, that if the preface passed so well, this will not irritate more, being indeed, 6
Collection of Letters,
Sir David Dalrymple's Me
to the preface, but as palma ad pugnum. Your own love expressed to me, I heartily embrace; and hope that there will never be occasion of other, than intireness between us; which nothing but majores charitates shall ever be able to break off.
Interrogatories whereupon PEACHAM is to be examined.
Questions in general.
1. WHO procured you, moved you, or advised you, and Letters to put in writing these traiterous slanders which you relating to have set down against his majesty's person and government, or any of them?
of Great Britain in 2. Who gave you any advertisement or intelligence the reign of James the touching those particulars which are contained in First, p. 26. Edit, Glas- Writings; as touching the sale of the crown lands, the gow. 1762. deceit of the king's officers, the greatness of the king's
gifts, his keeping divided courts, and the rest; and who hath conferred with you, or discoursed with you, concerning those points?
3. Whom have you made privy and acquainted with the said writings, or any part of them? and who hath been your helpers or confederates therein?
4. What use mean you to make of the said writings? was it by preaching them in sermon, or by publishing them in treatise? if, in sermon, at what time, and in what place meant you to have preached them? if, by treatise, to whom did you intend to dedicate, or exhibit, or deliver such treatise?
5. What was the reason, and to what end did you first set down in scattered papers, and after knit up, in form of a treatise or sermon, such a mass of treasonable slanders against the king, his posterity, and the whole state?
6. What moved you to write, the king might be stricken with death on the sudden, or within eight days, as Ananias or Nabal; do you know of any conspiracy or danger to his person, or have you heard of any such attempt?
7. You have confessed that these things were applied
to the King; and that, after the example of preachers and chroniclers, Kings infirmities are to be laid open: this sheweth plainly your use must be to publish them, shew to whom and in what manner.
8. What was the true time when you wrote the said writings, or any part of them? and what was the last time you looked upon them, or perused them before they were found or taken?
9. What moved you to make doubt whether the people will rise against the King for taxes and oppressions? Do you know, or have you heard, of any likelihood or purpose of any tumults or commotion?
10. What moved you to write, That getting of the crown-land again would cost blood, and bring men to say, This is the heir, let us kill him? Do you know, or have you heard of any conspiracy or danger to the prince, for doubt of calling back the crown-land?
11. What moved you to prove, that all the King's officers mought be put to the sword? Do you know, or have you heard of any petition is intended to be made against the King's council and officers, or any rising of people against them?
12. What moved you to say in your writing, That our King, before his coming to the kingdom, promised mercy and judgment, but we find neither? What promise do you mean of, and wherein hath the King broke the same promise?
There follows in the hand-writing of Secretary Winwood,
Upon these interrogatories, Peacham this day was examined before torture, in torture, between torture, and after torture; notwithstanding, nothing could be drawn from him, he still persisting in his obstinate and insensible denials, and former answers.
January the 19th, 1614.
Rawley's CXI. To the KING, concerning PEACHAM'S
It may please your excellent Majesty,
IT grieveth me exceedingly that your majesty should be so much troubled with this matter of Peacham, whose raging devil seemeth to be turned into a dumb devil. But although we are driven to make our way through questions, which I wish were otherwise, yet, I hope well, the end will be good. But then every man must put to his helping hand; for else I may say to your majesty, in this and the like cases, as St. Paul said to the centurion, when some of the mariners had an eye to the cock-boat, Except these stay in the ship ye cannot be safe. I find in my lords great and worthy care of the business: And for my part, I hold my opinion and am strengthened in it by some records that I have found. God preserve your majesty.
Your majesty's most humble
Jan. 21, 1614.
and devoted subject and servant,
CXII. To the KING, touching Peacham's cause.
It may please your excellent Majesty,
THIS day in the afternoon was read your majesty's letters of direction touching Peacham; which because it concerneth properly the duty of my place, I thought it fit for me to give your majesty both a speedy and a private account thereof; that your majesty, knowing things clearly how they pass, may have the true fruit of your own wisdom and clear-seeing judgment in governing the business.
9 Peacham was accused of having inserted several treasonable passages in a sermon; but in a sermon never preached, nor intended to be made public: it had been taken out of his study. The King would have the judges give their opinion of this affair privately and apart; which my lord Coke refused to do, as a thing of dangerous tendency. Peacham was found guilty of high treason; as was Algernon Sidney for the like crime, in Charles the second's time.
First, for the regularity which your majesty, as a master in business of estate, doth prudently prescribe in examining and taking examinations, I subscribe to it; only I will say for myself, that I was not at this time the principal examiner.
For the course your majesty directeth and commandeth for the feeling of the judges of the King's Bench, their several opinions, by distributing ourselves and enjoining secrecy; we did first find an encounter in the opinion of my lord Coke, who seemed to affirm, that such particular and, as he called it, auricular taking of opinions was not according to the custom of this realm; and seemed to divine, that his brethren would never do it. But when I replied, that it was our duty to pursue your majesty's directions, and it were not amiss for his lordship to leave his brethren to their own answers; it was so concluded: and his lordship did desire that I might confer with himself; and Mr. Serjeant Montague was named to speak with Justice Crook; Mr. Serjeant Crew with Justice Houghton; and Mr. Solicitor with Justice 1 Dodderidge. This done, I took my fellows aside, and advised that they should presently speak with the three judges, before I could speak with my lord Coke, for doubt of infusion; and that they should not in any case make any doubt to the judges, as if they mistrusted they would not deliver any opinion apart, but speak resolutely to them, and only make their coming to be, to know what time they would appoint to be attended with the papers. This sorted not amiss; for Mr. Solicitor came to me this evening, and related to me that he had found Judge Dodderidge very ready
1 Sir John Dodderidge was born in Devonshire, and successively admitted in Exeter college, Oxford, and the Middle Temple, London: where having acquired the reputation of being a very great common and civil lawyer, as well as a general scholar, he was made serjeant at law 1 Jacobi, then the King's solicitor, and after that the King's serjeant, till he was advanced to be one of the judges of the King's Bench; where he sat many years. He died 13 Sept. 1628, in the 73d year of his age, and was succeeded by Sir George Crook, who tells us, Sir John Dodderidge was a man of great knowledge, as well in the common law, as in other sciences, and divinity. Stephens.