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by the late King of worthy memory, King Henry the Eighth, our progenitor and great uncle, by his letters patents, under his great seal, or by his last will in writing, signed with his hand. And forasmuch as the said limitation of the imperial crown of this realm, being limited (as is aforesaid) to the Lady Mary and Lady Elisabeth, being illegitimate, and not lawfully begotten, for that the marriage had between the said late King, King Henry the Eighth, our progenitor and great uncle, and the Lady Catharine, mother to the said Lady Mary, and also the marriage had between the said late king, King Henry the Eighth, our progenitor and great uncle, and the Lady Anne, mother to the said Lady Elisabeth, were clearly and lawfully undone, by sentences of divorces, according to the word of God, and the ecclesiastical laws: And which said several divorcements have been severally ratified, and confirmed by authority of parliament, and especially in the twenty-eighth year of the reign of King Henry the Eighth, our said progenitor and great uncle, remaining in force, strength, and effect, whereby as well the said Lady Mary, as also the said Lady Elisabeth, to ail intents and purposes, are, and have been clearly disabled, to ask, claim, or challenge, the said imperial crown, or any other of the honours, castles, manors, lordships, lands, tenements, or other hereditaments, as heir, or heirs to our said late cousin, King Edward the Sixth, or as heir or heirs to any other person, or persons whatsoever, as well for the cause before rehearsed, as also, for ibat the said Lady Mary and Lady Elisabeth were unto our said late cousin but of the half blood, and therefore, by the ancient laws, statutes, and customs of this realm, be not inheritable unto our said late cousin, although they had been born in lawful matrimony, as indeed they were not, as by the said sentences of divorce, and the said statute of the twenty-eighth year of the reign of King Henry the Eighth, our said progenitor and great uncle, plainly appeareth.
And forasmuch also as it is to be thought, or, at the least, much to be doubted, that if the said Lady Mary, or Lady Elisabeth, should hereafter have, and enjoy the said imperial crown of this reahn and should then happen to marry a stranger, born out of this realm, that then the same stranger, having the government and the imperial crown in his hands, would adhere and practise, not only to bring this noble free realm into the tyranny and servitude of the Bishop of Rome, but also to have the laws and customs of his or their own native country or countries to be practised, and put in use within this realm, rather than the laws, statutes, and customs here of long time used; whereupon the title of inheritance of all and singular the subjects of this realm do depend, to the peril of conscience, and the utter subversion of the commonweal of this realm. Whereupon our said late dear cousin weighing and considering with himself, what ways and means were most convenient to be had for the stay of the said succession in the said imperial crown, if it should please God to call our said late cousin out of this transitory life, having no issue of his body, and calling to his remembrance, that we and the lady Catharine, and the lady Mary, our sisters, being the daughters of the lady Frances, our natural mother, and then and yet wife to our natural and most loving. Father, Henry, Duke of Suffolk, and the Lady Margaret, daughter of the Lady Eleanor, then deceased sister to the said Lady Frances, and the late wife of our cousin, Henry, Earl of Cumberland, were very nigh of his grace's blood, of the part of his father's side, our said progenitor and great uncle, and being naturally born here within the realm, and for the very good opinion our said late cousin had of our; and our said sisters and cousin Margaret's good education, did there fore, upon good deliberation and advice herein had and taken, by his said letters patents declare, order, assign, limit, and appoint, that if it should fortune himself our said late cousin, King Edward the Sixth, to decease, having no issue of his body lawfully begotten, that then the said imperial crown of England and Ireland, and the confines of the same, and his title to the crown of the realm of France, and all and singular honours, castles, prerogatives, privileges, pre-eminences, authorities, jurisdictions, dominions, possessions, and hereditaments, to our said late cousin, King Edward the Sixth, or to the said imperial crown belonging, or in any wise appertaining, should, for lack of such issue of his body, remain, come, and be unto the eldest son of the body of the said Lady Frances, lawfully begotten, being born into the world in his life-time, and to the heirs inale of the body of the same eldest son lawfully begotten, and so from son to son, as he should be of antienty in birth, of the body of the said Lady Frances, lawfully begotten, being born into the world in our said late cousin's lifetime, and to the heirs male of the body of every such son, lawfully begotten; and, for default of such son born into the world, in his life-time, of the body of the said lady Frances lawfully begotten, and, for lack of heirs male of every such son lawfully begotten, that then the said imperial crown, and all and singular other the premises, should remain, come, and be to us, by the name of the Lady Jane, eldest daughter of the said Lady Frances, and to the heirs male of our body lawfully begotten, and for lack of such heir male of our body lawfully begotten, that then the said imperial crown, and all other the premises, should remain, come, and be to the said Lady Catharine, our said second sister, and to the heirs male of the body of the said Lady Catharinc lawfully begotten, with divers other remainders, as by the same letters patents more plainly and at large it may and doth appear. Sithens the making of which letters patents, that is to say, on Thursday, which was the sixth day of this instant month of July, it hath pleased God to call to his infinite mercy our said most dear and intirely beloved cousin, Edward the Sixth, whose soul God pardon, and forasmuch as he is now deceased, having no heirs of his body begotten, and that also there remain, at this present time, no heirs lawfully begotten of the body of our said progenitor and great uncle, King Henry the Eighth, and forasmuch also as the said Lady Frances, our said mother, had no issue male begotten of her body, and born into the world, in the life-time of our said cousin, King Edward the Sixth, so as the said Imperial Crown, and other the premises to the same belonging, or in any wisc appertaining, now be, and remain to us in our actual and royal possession, by authority of the said letters patents: We do, therefore, by these presents, signify unto all our most loving, faithful, and obedient subjects, that like as we, for our part, shall, by God's Grace, shew ourselves a most gracious and benign sovereign Queen and lady to all our good subjects in all their just and lawful suits and causes, and to the uttermost of our power shall preserve and maintain God's most holy word, Christian policy, and the good laws, customs, and liberties of these our realms and dominions; so we mistrust not, but they, and every of them, will again, for their parts, at all times, and in all cases, shew themselves unto us, their natural liege Queen and lady, most faithful, loving, and obedient subjects, according to their bounden duties and allegiances, whereby they shall please God, and do the thing that shall tend to their own preservations and sureties; willing and commanding all men of all estates, degrees, and conditions, to see our peace and accord kept, and to be obedient to our laws, as they tender our favour, and will answer for the contrary, at their extreme perilş. In witness whereof, we have caused these our letters to be made patents. Witness ourself at the Tower of London, the tenth day of July, in the first year of our reign.
God save the Queen. Anno Domini
Londini in ædibus Richardi Graftoni Reginæ a
THE COPIE OF A PISTEL OR LETTER
GILBARD POTTER, In the tyme when he was in prison, for speakinge on our most true Queenes part, the Lady Mary, before he had his cares cut of,
THE XI. OF JULYE.
Si Deus nobiseum, quis contra nos ? Anno M.D.Lüij. the Firste of August. Duodecimo, containing sixteen Pages.
POORE PRATTE, VNTO HIS FREND GILBARD POTTER, The most faythful and trew louer of Quene Mary, doth him salute with
many salutasions. S.P.D.
W H EREAS thou haste of late showed thy selfe, most faithful Gil
bard, to be a true subiecte to Mary, Quene of England, not only by wordes but by deedes, and for the farther triall of thy true heart towardes her, did offer thy hodye to be slayne in her quarell, and offered vp thy selfe into the handes of the ragged beare most rancke, with whom is nether mercy, pitie, nor compassion, but bis indignation
present death. Thy promis, Gilbard, is faythfull, thy heart is true, thy loue is feruente towardes her Grace; and, wheras you did promis me faythfullye, when I last visited thee in prison, to be torne with wild horses, thou wouldest not denye Marye oure Quene, and to that whiche thou tofore dyd saye, No denial shalbe found in thee, so styll do thou continue in the same mynde, haue a respect of thy conscience. Feare not to saye the truth; if thou dye, thou shalt dye in the ryght; Pugna pro patria, Fighte for thy countrey, sayeth the philosopher. For, as it shalbe to thi great honour and prayse in this world, and in heauen, to dye in her Graces quarell, and in the defence of thy countrey; so wold it be to the viter destruction, both of thy body and soule, to do the contrarye. But, O thou true Gilbard, stand stifye in her cause, and do thou according to thy last promis made mc, (as I do not doubt but thou wilt) then wil God kepe thee and preserue thee. If thou shuld dye, thou shalt dye innocent ; so skal you be assured to possesse the euerlastyng kyngdom of heauen. If you fortune to lyue, then shal it be also accompted praise to thee; and fully perswade with thy selfe, that her Grace wil consider thy faythful and true heart, as she hath juste occasion. For, who could haue bene more faythfuller, then thou haste bene? What man coulde haue showed him selfe bolder in her Graces cause, than thou hast showed? Or who dyd so valiantlye in the proclamation tyme, when lane was published Quene, vnworthy as she was, and more to blame, I may say to thee, are some of the consenters therunto. Ther were thousands more then thy selfe, yet durst they not (suche is the fragility and weakenks of the flesh) once moue their lippes to speake that whichc thou did speake. Thou offeredst thy selfe amongst the multitude of people to fight agaynste them all in her quarell, and for her honour dyd not feare to runne vpon the poynt of the swordes. O faythful subiect, О true heart to Mary our Quene, I can not but wryte of the condign prayse that thou deseruest for thys thy boldnes. I may compare the to Sidrack, Misack, and Abdenago, whych, rather then they wold forsake their mayster, were contented to suffer the tormentes in the hoate burnyng ouen. And as young Daniel, when he was broughte before such a ruler, as that false Duke of Northumberland, rather then to denye his Lord, would suffer the paynes of imprysonment, and to be cast in the demne of lions : Even so, faythful Gilbard, rather than theu wouldest consente to their false and tray. terouse proclamation for lane, when thou dyd hear it, hauyng a clear conscience, wold not consent to the same most trayterous fact. And so little regarded thy life, boldly stode in thy mistres cause, and offered thy bodye to be imprisoned, and to suffer death, then to denyc onr vertuouse Mary to be Quone. And therfore, trust to it, my faythfull Gilbard, as the God of Sidrack, Misack, and Abdenago saued them from al hurt in the hoat burnyng vuon, that not so muche as one heare of their heade was perished : So shall the same God saue thee out of the handes of the cruell beare, and give hym no power of thy lyfe. Agayne as God preserved Daniel when he was cast in the denne amongest the lions, at the commaundement of the King Nabuchodonosor. And, when he was in the middeste of them, the lions playd with him, which was admirable. So do thou trust to, albeit thou art now in the denne amongest devourers (I meane vnder the power of the beare and ragged staf) yet the God of Daniel shall safely delyuer thee out of all their handes; and thee rather, if thou dost stil continue stedfast, and hold on Mary our Quene, and forsake thy mayster, no more then Daniel and the brethren did their God andm ayster. Dispayre not, but lyue in hope to se a good day, and the soner will it come, if we continue in praier. For my part, faithful Gilbard, I wyl never sease day nor nyght from praying for our good Mary, that her Grace might once obteyne the crowne, and that it wold please him of his omnipotent power to strengthen and helpe her Grace, Mary, thy Quene and mine, so say I to the death, and to conquere that beare. So here I shall desire thee also to offer vp to the Almighty Lord godly contemplations, that she maye ouercome hir enemies.
For, as the inhabitants of the great city of Niniue continued in praier, and clothed them selues in sackecloth, caste duste vpon their heades, repented, and bewailed their manifold sinnes and offences, at what tyme as the prophete Ionas had preached to them the destruction of their citye; knew that it was time to do al the same, els destruction wold folow : So shulde we now not sease praying to God to send vs quietnes, and that the Lady Mary might enioye the kingdom.
For we haue had manye prophetes and true preachers, wbiche did declare vnto vs, that oure Kinge shal be taken awaye from vs, and a tyrant shal reygne ; the gospel shall be plucked awaye, the right heyre shalbe dispossessed, and al for our vnthanckfulnes; And thinkest thou not, Gilbard, the world is now come? Yea, truely. And what shal folow, yf we repent not in tymes. The same God wil take from vs the vertuouse Lady Mary, oure lawfull Quene, and send such a cruel Pharao, as the ragged beare, to rule vs, which shal pul and pol vs, spoyle vs, and vtterly destroy vs, and bring vs in great calamities and miseries. And this God will send vs, and al for our iniquities. For, yf vnto oure Quene Mary any euell shuld happen, let vs fully perswade with our selues, that it is not for her small sinnes only, but for our euel liuinges. And this litle troubles, whiche be greuous to hir Grace, doth chaunse to her for thy sinnes and myne, let vs so thinke. For truely, faythful Gilbard, God is displeased with vs many wayes. And here, I dar be bold to say, that her Grace is more sorowful for the death of King Edwarde her brother, then she is glad that she is Quene. For her part, good vertuouse lady, she would haue bene as glad of her brothers life, as the ragged beare is of his death. Agamemnon, the Heathen King, was neuer more vnquieted with his highe estate, when he lamented for that he was King ouer so manye people, as her Grace is nowe troubled to rule and gouerne so many euell persons. Plato was neuer gladder, when he was exiled from the kinges courte, because his mind was more addict therby, and geuen to the study of philosophie, as she wold be, if she might once be exiled from the company of such traitours, wherby she might be more quieter, and possesse this bir kingdome peasablye. Euen so I dare aduouche, that her Grace was farre quieter, and better contented with her olde estate, then now she is Quenc, yf- it had pleased God. But now, praised be Almighti God, because he hath so prouided ys a right and lawful ayre, and so vertuous