Page images
PDF
EPUB

time. Nobilissimi Worteri fratres do give him to find him writers 400 crowns a-year, for four years. Sturmius telleth Mr. Hales, that a better and more plentiful analysis might be made of the Greek tongue; and he would make it, if he had help towards the costs. Mr. Hales will write to many of the nobles in it, as he writes unto me; but I wrote unto him, that teipporal lords will rather win this praise, than bishops be brought to bear the charges. It were a shame if England lack this honour, and all learning this profit.

Ye must either content ye for news with Mr. Leaver's letters, or feed ye with the hope of my next to come.

I am sorry Mr. Langdale is gone from that college, although he did dissent from us in religion; yet we know that God calleth men at divers hours at his pleasure.

Commend me to good Mr. Pember, and tell him I trust he received my letter in Lent. Tell him also, that yesterday I saw a new coin, which I would he had, for all the old 'he hath. It was made in this house where we lie, at Inspruck. It is very like a great Suffolk cheese as any cometh to Stourbridge fair, but somewhat thicker. It is even so heavy as two men can bear. There was molten for it, of fine silver, '(for I saw the making of it) 6400 guilders: every guilder is worth 5s. English and more, except our money be well amended.

Noble Maximilian and his wife be come out of Spain, and be in Italy coming hitherward. This country of Tyrol, where we be, which is under Ferdinand, doth present this goodly coin to queen Mary, Maximilian's wife, which is the Emperor's daughter, because she was never in Germany afore. This rich gift is given for Maximilian's sake, whom all men love above measure. There is of one side of this coin all the arms belonging to Maximilian and his wife; on the other stands Queen Mary his wife's face, most lively printed, as the old antiquities be. Above her image be these words in Latin : Sereniss. Dnæ. Muriæ Reginæ Boemiæ, ex familia Regum Hisa paniæ, et Archiducum Austriæ progenitæ, jamprimum

in Germaniam venienti, Tyroliensium munus, 1551. And although I favour Maximilian, yet I would Mr. Pember had it in his chamber. Tell Mr. Pember also, I do not forget old coins. I have the fairest now that ever he saw in silver, and Domitian cum anchorá Aldi. Besides the Fuggeri, which have pecks of them, there is a worthy merchant called Mr. Rem, which had me into his house, and let me see a wonderful sight Greek and Latin. He gave me four at my coming from Augsburg : the first was Sulla Cos.; on the other side, C. Pompeius Rufus 2 F. Cos. : the second had on the one side, Fasces Imperii ; on the other side, an elephant, and under his feet Cæsar : the third had on the one side, Cæsar. Imp. Pont. Max. III. Vir.: the fourth, a goodly face, and about it M. Brutus Imp.; on the other side, two daggers, and in the midst a thing like a bell, having written underneath, Id Martis. I bought also at Augsburg, a strange old face, with long hair; on the other side, in Greek, OTPPOT BASIAEOS. Mr. Rem showed me also a coin, with a rude face in silver, thick, and about it, in Greek, ΦΙΛΙΠΠΟΥ.

Commend me to good Mr. Pember, and all my friends, because I will leave out none. Commend me to my

hostess Barnes, Dr. Maden, &c. to all at Wittam. I tell you once again, Mr. Stephen Hales at London can convey your

letters. Farewell. My lord calls.----From Inspruck, the 17th of November, 1551.

R. A. I am glad Vahan writes to you. By him you shall know

Gentle Raven and Ireland, look to my duties for the Greek tongue and my oratorship. I would be loth but to hear tell the scholars went forward therein.

more.

LETTERS TO SIR WILLIAM CECIL,

TRANSCRIBED FROM THL ORIGINALS PRESERVED AMONG THE LANS.

DOWNI MSS. NOW IN THE BRITISH MUSEUM,

VII.

Right Honourable Sir William Cecil, Your short letter, so full of good will every word toward me, hath brought me more comfort in this

my

far absence from my country (the tidings only of Mr. Cheke's recovery excepted) than any thing that hapt unto me these many years. Most glad I am that it pleaseth you I may be yours; and as sure I am I shall cease to be mine own, when I shalí cease to labor to be otherwise. And I pray God my ability may be so happy in doing somewhat, as my purpose is purely bent to mind all duty and service towards your mastership. And if ye shall find me hereafter no less ready to deserve good will than to desire profit, and as diligent to please you in duty as to trouble you with suits, then let your promise of gentleness and my wish of your favour be sealed up with that sign of good-will, which did well appear in every word written in your most gentle letter. These few words thus meant shall, I trust, for this time, do the message to your mastership of my willing duty, which hereafter shall be as ready, God willing, to do you long and loving service, as my letters are now, of purpose, short, for fear of troubling your most weighty affairs.

Mr. Leaver wrote unto me a joyful letter of Mr. Cheke's most happy recovery, praying to God in this letter, that England may be thankful to God, for restoring such a man

THE WORKS OF ROGER ASCHAM.

379

again to the king: and well prayed truly; but I am thus firmly persuaded that God wished and would that we would be thankful, and therefore bestowed this benefit upon us. God's wrath, I trust, is satisfied, in punishing divers orders of the realm for their misorder in taking away singular men from them. As learning by Mr. Bucer, counsel by Mr. Denny, nobility by the two young dukes, courtesy by gentle Blair, St. John's by good Claud. But if learning, counsel, nobility, courtesy, and Cambridge should have been all punished at once by taking away Mr. Cheke too, then I would have thought our mischief had been so much, as did cry to God for a general plague, in taking away such a general and only man as Mr. Cheke is.

Sir, if I might be bold, I doubt not but your mastership is well weary in seeing our letters fitly deciphered, lest the fallax of composition and division (as you know better than I) do sometimes so invert the sentence as in the self-same words thus joined or so separated, and thus other mind may appear in reading than was meant in writing; and because I perceive this in ciphering, I think others may perhaps light upon the same in deciphering.

And thus for this time I will take my leave of your mastership, purposing elsewhere to trouble you with the talk of longer letters, if I may learn that your gentleness will war. rant my boldness therein. The Lord keep you, my, good Lady Cecil, and all yours.--From Villach in Carinthia, the 12th of July 1552.

Yours and command me,

R. ASKHAM.* To the Right Honourable Sir

William Cecil, Knt. one of
the two principal Secreta-
ries to the King's Majesty.

* Sic in MS.

VIII.

TO THE SAME.

Sir, So great thanks for so little a token, must needs prove, both of more gentleness in you, and of great good will towards me.

There is a chart, purposely for Mirandula, yet so containing the confines about it, that ye may see the whole of Lombardy from Piedmont to Venice, easy as a man would wish. Rome is stamped so likewise with the best part of Tuscany about it. These charts I would I had to send them to your mastership, but Mr. George Throckmorton hath both these and other ones, as he told me, which I know ye may both see and use at your pleasure. And I am glad your inducement to have particular charts doth confirm mine opinion in the same.

Sir, I would be very glad to know of your mastership, if I, in place where I am abroad, may, without prosecuting at home, sometime as occasion serveth talk with the Pope's Nuncio's men, as I do with other agents and Italians here. Hitherto I have not, nor would not do it, for still I knew not whether I might do it or no, nor hereafter will not attempt it, except your wisdom would warrant me thereunto. I believe you have better advice from Rome of the whole state and stirs of Italy, than all the rest of ambassadors have, and I would trust so to observe my talk as I should get more of some of them, than any of those should win of me; and I would also do it so as neither any at home should have cause to mistrust, nor those here occasion to hope that I thereby should become papistical.

We were at Strasburg, and sorry I was that we saw not Joannes Sturmius there. Worteri fratres, to whom he wrote Nobilitas liberata, did very gently show unto me divers things of his writing, and amongst the rest, the two first contrariæ orationes excellently, as I think, translated and at large as I saw [expounded] by Sturmius. I had no leisure to peruse it much, but only then I did remember and wish that I had known the hard place in Demosthenes which your mastership once at Shene did show unto me, and I would the gladlier know the leaf and line thereof in som certain print, because when I read that part of Demosthenes

« PreviousContinue »