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LETTER XII.
The Earl's Anfwer.

MY very good Lord,-Though there is not that Man this day living whom I would fooner make Judge of any Queftion that might concern me, then yourself; yet you must give me Leave to tell you, that in fome Cafes I must appeal from. all earthly Judges: And if in any, then furely in this, when the highest Judge on Earth hath impofed upon me the heaviest Punishment, without Triall or Hearing. Since then I muft either answer your Lordship's Arguments, or elfe forfake mine own juft Defence, I will force mine aking Head to do me Service for an Hour. I muft firft deny my Difcontentment (which was forced) to be an humorous Discontent; and in that it was unseasonable, or is so long continuing, your Lordship fhould rather condole with me then expoftulate: naturall Seasons are expected here below, but violent and unreasonable Storms come from above: There is no Tempeft to the paffionate Indignation of a Prince, nor yet at any Time fo unfeafonable as when it lighteth on those that might expect an Harvest of their carefull and painfull Labours. He that is once wounded muft needs feel Smart till his Hurt be cured, or the Part hurt become fenflefs. But Cure I expect none, her Majefty's Heart being obdurate; and be without Sense I cannot, being of Flesh and Blood. But you may say, I aim at the End: I do more than aim, for I fee an End of all my Fortunes, I have fet an End to all my Defires. In this Courfe do I any Thing for mine Enemies? When I was prefent I found them abfo

lute,

lute, and therefore I had rather they should triumph alone, than have me attendant upon their Chariots. Or do I leave my Friends? When I was a Courtier I could fell them no Fruit of my Love and now that I am an Hermit, they fhall bear no Envie for their Love to me. Or do I forfake myself, because I do not enjoy myfelf? Or do I overthrow my Fortunes, because I build not a Fortune of Paper-Walls, which every Puff of Wind bloweth down? Or do I ruinate mine Honor, becaufe I leave following the Purfuit, or wearing the falfe Mark or the Shadow of honor? Do I give Courage or Comfort to the Enemies, because I neglect myself to encounter them, or because I keep my Heart from Bufinefs, though I cannot keep my Fortune from declining? No, no, I give every one of those Confiderations his due right, and the more I weigh them, the more I find myself justified from offending in any of them. As for the two laft Objections, that I forfake my Countrey when it hath moft Need of me, and fail in that Indiffoluble Duty which I owe to my Soveraign; I an fwer, That if my Countrey had at this Time any Heed of my Publick Service, her Majefty that governeth it, would not have driven me to a private Life. I am tied to my Countrey by two Bonds; one publick, to discharge carefully and industrioufly that Truft which is committed to me; the other private, to facrifice for it my Life and Carkaffe, which hath been nourifhed in it. Of the firft I am free, being dismissed by her Majefty: Of the other nothing can free me but Death, and therefore no Occafior. of Performance fhall fooner offer itself, but I will meet it halfe Way. The indiffoluble Duty 1 owe unto her Majefty, the Service of an Earle and of Marshall of England, and I have been con

tent

tent to do her the Service of a Clerk; but I can never serve her as a Villain or a Slave. But you fay I must give Way to Time. So I do; for now that I fee the Storm come, I have put myself into Harbour. Seneca faith, we must give Way to Fortune. I know that Fortune is both blind and ftrong, and therefore I go as far as I can out of the Way. You fay the Remedy is not to ftrive: I neither ftrive nor feek for Remedy. But you fay, I muft yield and fubmit: I can neither yield myself to be guilty, nor this my Imprisonment lately laid upon me, to be juft; I owe so much to the Author of Truth, as I can never yield Truth to be Falfhood, nor Falfhood to be Truth. Have I given Cause, you ask, and yet take a Scandall? No, I gave no Cause to take up fo much as Fimbria his Complaint: for I did totum telum corpore accipere; I patiently bear and fenfibly feel all that I then received when this Scandall was given me. Nay, when the vileft of all Indignities are done unto me, doth Religion enforce me to fue? Doth God require it? Is it Impiety not to do it? Why? Cannot Princes erre? Cannot Subjects receive Wrong? Is an earthly Power infinite? Pardon me, pardon me, my Lord, I can never subscribe to thefe Principles. Let Solomon's Fool laugh when he is ftricken; let thofe that mean to make their Profit of Princes, fhew to have no Senfe of Princes Injuries; let them acknowledge an infinite Abfoluteness on Earth, that do not believe an abfolute Infinitenefs in Heaven. As for me, I have received Wrong, I feel it; my Caufe is good, I know it; and whatsoever comes, all the Powers on Earth can never fhew more Strength or Conftancy in oppreffing, than I can fhew in fuffering whatfoever can or fhall be impofed upon me. Your Lordship in the Beginning

of

of your Letter makes me a Player, and yourself a Looker on; and me a Player of my own Game, so you may fee more then I; but give me Leave to tell you, that fince you do but fee, and I do fuffer, I muft of Neceffity feel more then you. I muft crave your Lordship's Patience to give him that hath a crabbed Fortune, leave to use a crooked Stile. But whatfoever my Stile is, there is no Heart more humble, nor more affected towards your Lordship, than that of

Your Lordship's poor friend,

LETTER XIII.

ESSEX.

Sir Philip Sidney to 2 Elizabeth.

MOST feared and beloved, most sweet and gracious Soveraign,-To feek out Excuses of this my Boldness, and to arm the Acknowledging of a Fault with Reasons for it, might better fhew, I know I did amifs, than any Way diminish the Attempt; especially in your Judgment, who being able to difcern lively into the Nature of the Thing done, it were Folly, to hope, by laying on better Colours, to make it more acceptable. Therefore carrying no other Olive-branch of Interceffion, than the laying of myself at your Feet; nor no other Infinuation, either for Attention or Pardon, but the true vowed Sacrifice of unfeigned Love, I will in fimple and direct, Terms (as hoping they fhall only come to your merciful Eyes) fet down the Overflowings of my Mind, in this most important Matter: Importing, as I think, the Continuance of

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your Safely; and (as I know) the Joys of my Life. And because my Words (I confefs, fhallow; but, coming from the deep Well-fpring of most loyal Affection) have delivered unto your moft gracious Ears, what is the general Sum of my travelling Thoughts therein; I will now but ononly declare, what be the Reasons that make me think that the Marriage with Mounfieur will be unprofitable to you: Then, will I answer the Objections of thofe Fears, which might procure fo violent a Refuge. The Good or Evils that will come to you by it, must be confidered, either according to your Eftate, or Perfon. To your Eftate: What can be added to the being an Abfolute born, and accordingly, Refpected Princess? But, as they fay, the Irishmen were wont to call over them that dye, They are Rich, they are Fair, what needed they to dye fo cruelly? Not unfitly to you, endowed with Felicity above all others, a Man might well ask, What makes you in fuch a Calm, to change Courfe? To fo healthful a Body, to apply fo unfavoury a Medicine? What can recompence fo hazardous an Adventure? Indeed, were it but the altering of a well maintained, and well approved Trade: For, as in Bodies Natural, every fudden Change is full of Peril: So, this Body politick, whereof you are the only Head, it is fo much the more dangerous, as there are more Humours, to receive a hurtful Impreffion. But Hazards are then most to be regarded, when the Nature of the Patient is fitly compofed to occafion them.

The Patient I account your Realm, the Agent Mounfieur, and his Defign; for neither outward Accidents do much prevail againft a true inward Strength, nor doth inward Weaknefs lightly fubvert

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