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to do in our names. Wherefore I humbly beseche your good lordship, in whome is my single trust under God and the kynges magestye, to be meane for us unto his grace, so that we may contynewe in our sayd monasterye to pray for his most noble grace and your good lordship, whiche we shall dayly doo, accordyng to our bounden duyties, duryng our lyves. I assure your lordshipe I am cumyng upwardes as fast as my sekenes will suffre me, to beseche your lordshipe of charite to be good to our pouer monastery. I sende unto your lordshipe the bill indented made by me and my brethren, whiche in presence of worshipfull men I proffered to M. Holcroft, whiche to take he refused. And thus our Lord God preserve your lordshipe in good helthe. Writen at Lychefyld, the ix. day of Septembre, by your pouer bedeman, Johan, abbot of Valerayall.
To the ryght honorable sir Thomas Cromewell, knyght, lord Cromewell, lord prevye seall, and chieff secretarye to the kynges highenes.
We have next another letter of the chancellor Audley, which relates to the two houses of St. Osith's (mentioned before) and St. John's at Colchester. The latter was founded by Eudo Dapifer at the beginning of the twelfth century. The last abbot was John Beche, who was executed Dec. 1, 1539, for his opposition to the king's commands. His predecessor had suffered the same fate.
After my right harty comendations to your good lordship, with my most harty thankes for your last gentill letters, I am required by the erle of Oxford and master chauncelour to desire your good lordshipp, in all our names, to make our moost humble recommendations to the kynges mageste, and to render ouer most
harty thankes to his highnes for our licens to visite and see my lord prynces grace,” whom, accordyng to our desires and duteez, we have seen, to our most rejoise and comfort, next the kynges mageste. And I assure your lordshipp I never sawe so goodly a childe of his age, so mery, so plesaunt, so good and lovyng countemans, and so ernest an ye, as it were a sage juggement towardes every person that repayreth to his grace; and, as it semyth to me, thankes be to our Lord, his grace encresith well in the ayer that he ys in. And albeyt a litell his graces flesche decayeth, yet he shotyth owt in length, and werith ferme and stiff, and can stedfastly stond, and wold avaunce hymself to move and go, if they wold suffir hym ; but as me semyth they do yet best, consideryng his grace is yet tendir, that he shuld not streyn hymself, as his owen corage wold serve hym, till he cum above a yere of age. I was right glad to understond there that the kynges mageste wil have his grace removyd from Haveryng now ageynst wynter tyme; for surely it semythe to me that the house wil be a cold howse for wynter, but for somer it ys a good and a goodly ayer. I can not comprehend nor describe the goodly towardly qualiteez that ys in my lord princes grace. He ys sent of almyty Good for al our comfortes. My dayly and contynual prayer ys and shalbe for his good and prosperus preservation, and to make his grace an olde prince, besechyng your good lordeshipp to rendir to the kynges mageste thankes in al our names as ys abovesayd. Suche brutes hath runne, sythen my last departyng from your good lordshipp, concernyng the dissolution of the abbeys of seynt Johns in Colchester and seynt Osyes, that I am bold to wryte to your good lordshipp after myn old sute for the contynuans of the said 2 places, not, as they bee, religeous, but that it mought plese the kynges mageste of his goodnes to translate them into collegys, after suche sort and ordynaunces as shall seme most charitable to his highnez; for the whiche, as I seyd to you afore, his grace may have of eythir of them a £1000, that ys for bothe £2000, and the gyft of the deanes and prebendaryes at his owen plesure. The cause I move this ys, fyrst, I consider that seynt Johns stondyth in his graces owen town at Colchester, wherin dwel many pour people, whiche have dayly relefe of the house; another cause, bothe these howses be in the ende of the shire of Essex, where litel hospitality shalbe kept, yf these be dissolved. For as for Seynt Jones lakkyth water, and seynt Osyes stondyth in the mersches, not very holsom, so that fewe of reputation, as I thymke, wil kepe contynual howses in eny of them, oonlez it be a congregation, as ther be nowe. There ys also 20 howses, gret and smal, dissolved, in the shire of Essex, all redy. These, and many other considerationz, movyth me to be a suter for ther traunslationz ; and yet I will not nor mynde in eny wise to move or speke in this mater othirwise than shal stond with the kynges plesure; nor, in good fayth, I entend not to have eny particler avauntage for ther standyng. Yt hath plesid the kynges mageste to giff me leve to exchange londes and thynges with eyther of the house, wher with I am satisfyed, and right hertely thanke his highnes for the same. I beseche you, my good lord, if your lordshipp shal thynke thys sute honest and resonable, to move this mater to the kynges mageste, and to sett it ernestly forward. Your lordshipp knowing bothe the howses, as ye do, can alegge more better considerations then I can imagyn or wryte. And thus I trobill you with my sutes oft tymes, and can not recompens your often gentilnesses and paynes taken for me but with my pour harty good will, whereof your lordeshipp shall be suer duryng my lyff. And besides that, if ye can or may opteyn this sute for the traunslation of these 2 howses, your lordeshipp shal have for your favour therin £200, besechyng you to travayle therin and to advertise me, as sone as ye shal se tyme, of the towardnes or ontowardnes therof. And thus, as a bolde sutour, puttyng your good lordshipp in remembrauns of al myn olde sutes, to use them at your owen leysur, I beseche our Lord to send your lordshipp as good helth, and as wel to fare as I wold myself. Wryten at Berechurch, the 8th day of September. Your assured, to all his power, THOMAS AUDELEY, k. chauncelour.
* Prince Edward, son of Queen Jane Seymour, born Oct. 12, 1537, afterwards King Edward VI.
Post scripta. Forasmoche as this day I ryde into Suffolk, to mete the duke of Norfolk at Framyngham, to kyll sum of his bukkes there, I thought good to advertise your lordeshipp therof. His grace desired to have had me to Kenynghale, to his howse there, but I besought hym to pardon me therof, it was so ferre from me; and so, to satisfy his desire, I promysed to mete hym at Framyngham, whiche ys but 24 miles from me; besechyng your lordeshipp to advertise me, by your next letters, of the kynges magestes retourne to London, or nere there abowt, with such other occurrauntes, as your lordshipp maye. And thus fare your good lordshipp hertely well.
The following letter relates to the abbey of Whitby, which has been already mentioned in the present volume.
CXXIII, THE PRIOR OF GISBURNE AND TRISTRAM TES HE TO CROMWELL.
Maye it please your good lordeshippe to be advertised, that accordinge to the kinges majestie commaundement we have byne at the monasterie of Whitbye, to have taken thelection of a newe abbott there. Aftre moch comunication hadd with the bretheren of the same howsse, we movid them according to your lordeship pleasure to compromitte the election into our handes, and therupon we to have nominate hym that your lordeshipp commaunded us in your lettres. And yet they nott therwith contentid, we moved them of newe to compromitt their saed election unto your lordeshipp, to thintent that your lordeshipp might have, nominat, and elect any at your pleasure; and utterly that also they have refused. And that forsomych as your lordeshipp hath send downe the congie d'eslier and free election from the kinges majestie, they woll not therfore go to any oodre election, but onlie per viam scrutinii. And forsomych as we can not induce them to compromitt their saed election neither to your lordeship nor to us, we have continued the said election tyll we be certified of the kinges and your lordeshipp further pleasure herin. And, that doon, syr Robert Woodhowsse, prior claustrall of the said monasterie, with the counsael of his adherentes which perversly resisted and withstode your lordeshippis pleasure and commaundment, we beyng their present, did departe withow;t our knowledg, and is commyng towarde your lordeshipp to make (as we doo thinke) sume sinistre and untrewe reporte and enformacion, to whome we humbly besech your lordeshipp geve no creadaunce, unto such tyme as we may further certifie your lordeshippe of his and their demeanors in the premisses, which we shall doo with as moche spede and diligence as we canne. And thus allmyghty God preserve your lordeshipp in honor. At Whitbye, the viljoh. day of Octobre, anno Domini 1538. Your lordshipps most humble bedman, Rob ERT SILVESTER, prior of Gysburne. Your lordeships moste bounden oratour, TRIsTRAM TEs H.E.