My Dutie to your Honor most humbly vsed, I delyuered the venison accordinge to your Ladyship’s lettre, to master Attorney, master Sackeford Master ffletewod master Solicetor master Osborne and master ffowler. many of the pies that were made longe wayes were both so moulded and so litle as they were not worth the gyvinge, yt were good that better order were taken herafter that suche as shuld be sent hether might be newe baked, and also might be made of some reasonable bignes and well handled/ the rounde pies were not moldye but muche better to see to then thothers./ Thei were very thanckefully taken of them all./ Master Sackeford telled me that he wished yat my Lord and your Ladyship wold see that the inhabitantes abowt the fforrest were well vsed, and said that he wold not haue geven his opynion in lawe against them (although he thought yt to be a clere case) but that he trusted your honors wold deale well with them, and when I answered hym that my Lord and your Ladyship meant bothe to deale so for them as thei shuld haue more comoditie then thei had or could haue if the forest shuld lye open to be vsed by them as thei desyred./ he said he wold speake to me more then to others. and telled me that he hard very evill speaches of my Lord in the courte so as yt was doubted he wold not deale well with any, and that he had put owte a greate nomber of tenantes lately to their vtter decaye, and demanded of me whether I knewe any suche matter, which when I denyed, he said yf yt were not true, he marvayled howe any durst rayse suche tales against a noble man of his callinge, but said the matter was made so playne in speche in court that yt was thought there was some greate cause of that brute./ And said that if he might advise my Lord & your Ladyship he wold wishe above all thinges that you wold refreyn to do any thinge that might be grevous to a multitide aswell for honor and conscience as to avoyde obloqie & clamorous complayntes./ with muche talke howe hatefull a thinge yt was bothe before god & men to distresse the poore/ and telled me he wold somethinge wryte to your Ladyship albeyt he might not vse that playnnes in as in wordes./ master Browne telleth me that master attorney of the duchie is perswaded to take agayn thoffice he had of my Lord if the same be offrede vnto hym in good soerte./ and consideringe his place and credite and his brvthers likewise who as yt is comenly reported ys like to be lord Keper very shortly me thincke yt were very necessary to kepe hym a frend./

as I wryt to your Ladyship last I haue reseyved from my Lord towardes paynge of my Ladies grace CCli which his Lordship sent by Tymperly, and he wryteth that he will take order by the next messenger howe I shall take vp so moche as to make vp CCCCli and that he wyll sende one Cli more after crystemas This is all that I yet hard from his Lordship therof./ Thus I humbly praye for the longe contynuance of your Ladyship’s health and prosperitie./ At Shrewesbury place this xxiijth of December 1579/

Your honors most bounden seruante

John Knyveton

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'Bess of Hardwick's Letters' was developed by The University of Glasgow with technical development provided by The Digital Humanities Institute at The University of Sheffield
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