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So much Bacon, it seems, would have approved. But I do not find that anything was done either to provide for the garrisons, or to keep Tyrone in order by the mustering of forces in England, or to detach the people from him by the public manifestation of an intention to reform abuses in Ireland. At any rate, whatever was done was not enough, as things turned out; for before winter the whole country was in revolt.
The truth I suppose is, that the negotiation with France, which was going on at the same time and not going on at all successfully, distracted the Queen's attention from Ireland, and both the menace of war which was to awe Tyrone, and the commencement of reformation which was to detach the people, were put off too long.
With the French negotiation I have nothing to do, -Bacon having had no concern in it. Only two letters addressed by him to Sir Robert Cecil while he was in France,-letters merely of friendship and courtesy,--have been by some accident preserved, and must come in here.
To Sir Robert CECIL, AT HIS BEING IN FRANCE. It may please your honourable Lordship,
I know you will pardon this my observance in writing to you, empty of matter, but out of the fullness of my love. I am sorry that as your time of absence is prolonged above that was esteemed at your Lordship's setting forth, so now, upon this last advertisement received from you, there groweth an opinion amongst better than the vulgar that the difficulties also of your negotiation are increased. But because I know the gravity of your nature to be not to hope lightly, it maketh me to despair the less. For you are natus ad ardua : and the indisposition of the subject may honour the skill of the workman. Sure I am, judgment and diligence shall not want in your Lordship's self. But this was not my purpose; being only to signify unto your Lordship my continual and incessant love towards you, thirsting after your return for many respects. So I commend you ever to the good preservation of the Divine Majesty. Gray's Inn.
At your Honour's commandment ever and particularly.
1 Resuscitatio, Supplement, p. 92.
To SIR ROBERT CECIL.
My singular good Lord,
The argument of my letters to your Lordship rather increaseth than spendeth; it being only the desire I have to salute you, which by your absence is more augmented than abated. For me to write to your Lordship occurrences, either of Scottish brags, or Irish plaints, or Spanish ruffling, or Low Country states,” were (besides that it is alienum quiddam from mine own humour) to forget to whom I write; save that you that know true advertisements sometimes desire and delight to hear common reports, as we that know but common reports desire to hear the truth. But to leave such as write to your fortunes, I write to yourself, in regard of my love to you; you being as near to me in heart's blood as in blood of descent. This day I had the contentment to see your father upon occasion: and methought his Lordship’s countenance was not decayed, nor his cough vehement; but his voice was as faint all the while as at first. Thus wishing your Lordship a happy and speedy return, I commend you to the Divine Majesty,
Sir Robert Cecil returned at the end of April, unsuccessful. But though the King of France could not be dissuaded from making a separate treaty with Spain, he accompanied it with a stipulation that England should be invited to join, if she were so disposed. This led to warm debates at the English council-board between the peace-party, represented by Burghley, and the war-party, represented by Essex. Bacon's opinion on the particular question which was in agitation has not been recorded. It is probable however that he approved of peace, and certain that he must have disapproved of the temper and method in which Essex was proceeding; who was now once more on the brink of his favourite precipice, and would naturally be indisposed to seek counsel in a quarter from which he knew he could expect no encouragement. That he should take a leading part in the choice of an officer for Ireland, and should even make a point of securing, if he could, the employment of one of his own party, was natural, and in accordance with Bacon's former advice. But if the report be well founded-and it rests upon better authority than such reports usually
| Resuscitatio, Supplement, p. 93.
? Qy. staies.
do--that he quarrelled with the Queen for proposing to send his uncle, Sir William Knollys, and insisted on the appointment of Sir George Carew, only because being on bad terms with him he wished to remove him from the Court; still more, if it be true that worthier quarrel than that he turned his back upon ber in a manner so insulting that she was provoked to strike him; whereupon taking fire in his turn he laid his own hand on his sword, swearing that he neither could nor would swallow such an indignity, and would not have endured it from Henry VIII. himself, and so retired in dudgeon from the Court, refusing to make any submission :-if all this be true, it is clear that he was going headlong in a course the direct opposite of that which Bacon had always urged upon him. Such however is the story, as gravely and dispassionately told by Camden, who may have heard the scene described by those who saw it,-for it is stated to have taken place in the presence of Lord Nottingham, Sir Robert Cecil, and Windebank;—a story never I believe contradicted; and confirmed, in the earlier part of it, by one of the “brief notes and remembrances" found among the papers of Sir John Harington, who was one of Essex's friends. Nor is it to be denied that it is quite in the spirit of his former proceedings, only more reckless and intemperate. The exact date of this outbreak is not stated: and the cause and issue of the quarrel which followed is only to be gathered from scraps of Court news, which cannot be arranged into a consistent tale. It seems probable however that the scene at Court took place in June or July, 1598; and that four or five months passed in ineffectual endeavours on the Queen's part to extract from him some apology or submission which might open the door to reconciliation, and in moody discontent and wailings as of a much injured man on his; till, about the end of October, the absolute necessity of agreeing upon some course for the reduction of Ireland to obedience (the condition of which I shall have to treat more at large
I "De hoc pacis negotio et de eligendo aliquem idoneum ad res Hibernicas introspiciendas, acre inter Essexium et Reginam intervenit dissidium, non aliis quam Admirallo, Roberto Cecilio e secretis, et Windebanke a sigillulo, præsentibus. Quum enim illa Gulielmum Knolles, Essexii avunculum, præ cæteris omnibus in Hiberniam mittendum censeret ; ille Georgium Carew, ut ab aula amandaret, potius mittendum, pervicaciter suaderet, nec persuadere posset ; sui immemor et obsequii negligens, incivilius, quasi ex despicientia, tergum avertit et subsannavit: illa impatientior alapam impegit et in malam rem abire jussit. Ille gladii capulo manum admovit. Admirallo se interponente, dejuravit nec posse nec velle tantam indignitatem exsorbere, nec ab Henrico Octavo perferre voluisse, fremensque ex aula se proripuit.”Camd. Ann. iii. p. 771.
2 "Note here how much will a man even benefit his enemy, provided he doth put him out of his own way. My Lord of Essex did lately want Sir George Carew to be Lord Lieutenant of Ireland, rather than his own uncle, Sir William Knollys; because he had given him some cause of offence, and by thus thrusting him into high office he would remove him from Court."— Nugæ Antiquæ, p. 173.
in another chapter) overruled smaller matters, and so they made it up. Not however, as on former occasions, with satisfaction on both sides, and some substantial object gained on the Earl's; for this last offence was but imperfectly digested by either. The reconciliation, such as it was, cannot be dated earlier than the 18th of ctober, if that be the true date of Essex's well-known letter to the Lord Keeper ; but I suppose it took place not long after. And then it probably was that Bacon's next letter was written; though my only ground for assigning this date to it is that it suits so well with the circumstances.
To MY LORD OF Essex.1 It may please your Lordship,
That your Lordship is in statu quo prius, no man taketh greater gladness than I do; the rather, because I assure myself that of your eclipses, as this hath been the longest, it shall be the last. As the comical poet saith, Neque illam tu satis noveras, neque te illa ; hoc ubi fit, ibi non vivitur.3 For if I may be so bold as to say what I think, I believe neither your Lordship looked to have found her Majesty in all points as you have done, neither her Majesty percase looked to find your Lordship as she hath done. And therefore I hope upon this experience may grow more perfect knowledge, and upon knowledge more true consent; which I for my part do infinitely wish; as accounting these accidents to be like the fish Remora; which though it be not great, yet hath it a hidden property to hinder the sailing of the ship. And therefore as bearing unto your Lordship, after her Majesty, of all public persons the second duty, I could not but signify unto you my affectionate gratulation. And so I commend your good Lordship to the best preservation of the Divine Majesty.
From Gray's Inn.
That the circumstances of this last quarrel had altered the relation between Essex and the Queen was most true. But Bacon's hope that it would prove an alteration for the better—which was really perhaps an expression of his fear that it would prove otherwise—was
Rawley's 'Resuscitatio,' Supplement, p. 95. 2 least in original. 3 So in the original. The passage is in Terence's 'Heautontimorumenos,' i. 1, where the last clause stands thus, "hocque fit ubi non vere vivitur."
not destined to fulfil itself. The Queen indeed, though her affection had received another mortification and her judgment another warning, retained her affection still, and would have gladly taken him back upon any reasonable assurance of good behaviour. But in Essex the season of good behaviour was past. “ Ambitious men,” says Bacon, " if they rise not with their service, they will take order that their service fall with them." Prosperity had made him such as we have seen him hitherto: what effect adversity was to have upon
him-if such mortifications as he had now to endure can be dignified with the name of adversity-we shall see shortly. For the present we must leave him in a state of partial reconcilement, with the sound of Bacon's voice in his ear hoping that his better knowledge may guide him into a safer course,