Friday, October 1, 2010

A Letter to Their Father, from the Sons of Richard, Duke of York

Ludlow Castle in Shropshire.  Residence of the family of Richard, Duke of York [1411-1460].  The stairs in the foreground lead to the Great Hall.

Edward the Fourth when Earl of Marche, and his brother the Earl of Rutland, to their father, Richard, Duke of York, about the year 1454.  Edward would then have been in his 12th year, and Edmund in his 11th [ms. Cotton. Vksp. F. in. fol 9. Orig.]:

Ryght hiegh and ryght myghty Prince, oure ful redouted and ryght noble lorde and ffadur, as lowely with all oure herts as we youre trewe and naturell sonnes can or may, we recomaunde us un to your noble grace, humbly besechyng your nobley & worthy ffaderhode daily to yeve us your hertely blessyng: thrugh whiche we trust muche the rather to encrees and growe to vertu, and to spede the bettur in all matiers and things that we schall use, occupie, and exercise. Ryght high and ryght myghty Prince, our ful redouted lorde and ffadur, we thanke our blessed Lorde not oonly of your honourable conduite and good spede in all your matiers and besynesse, and of your gracious preuaile ayenst the ntent & malice of your evilwillers, but also of the knowelage that hit pleased your nobley to lete us nowe late have of the same by relacion of Syr Watier Deureux knyght, and John Milewatier squier, and John at Nokes yemon of your honorable chambur. 
Also we thonke your noblesse and good ffadurhod of our grene gownes nowe late sende unto us to our grete comfort; beseching your good lordeschip to remembre our porteux, and that we myght have summe fyne bonetts sende un to us by the next seure messig, for necessite so requireth. Overe this, ryght noble lord and ffadur, please hit your highnesse to witte that we have charged your servant William Smyth berer of thees for to declare un to your nobley certayne things on our behalf, namely coicernyng and touching the odieux reule and demenyng of Richard Crofte and of his brother. Wherefore we beseche your graciouse lordeschip and full noble ffadurhood to here him in exposicion of the same, and to his relacion to yeve ful feith and credence. Ryght hiegh and ryght myghty Prince, our ful redoubted and ryght noble lorde and ffadur, we beseche almyghty Jhu yeve yowe as good lyfe and long with as muche contenual perfite prosperite as your princely hert con best desir. Writen at your Castill of Lodelowe on Setursday in the Astur Woke.
Your humble sonnes

E. Marche and E. Rutlonde

Sir Henry Ellis: Original Letters, Illustrative of English History [London: 1824], 1:9-10.  


Melisende said...

How spooky!! I was only reading this one myself yesterday and considering posting it. Great monds, etc etc.

Kevin said...

Thanks for the comment, Melisende. I enjoy finding off-the-beaten path original source materials, anything that enlivens the day-to-day world of my medieval ancestors. Nothing does the job better than personal correspondence!