The Folger Shakespeare Library

L.b.532: Letter from John Donne to Sir George More, 1601/1602 March 1: autograph manuscript signed

Catalog record:
Collection:Papers of the More family of Loseley Park, Surrey
Preferred Citation:Letter from John Donne to Sir George More, 1601/1602 March 1: autograph manuscript signed, Papers of the More family of Loseley Park, Surrey. Transcription by Early Modern Manuscripts Online (EMMO). MS L.b.532, Folger Shakespeare Library, Washington, DC.
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leaf 1 recto

If I could fear, yt in so much worthynes as ys in yow, there were no Mercy,
or yf these waights opprest onely my shoulders, and my fortunes, and not my
conscience, and hers, whose good ys dearer to me by much than my lyfe, I
should not thus troble yow wth my lrs. But when I see that this storme
hath shakd me at roote, in my lords fauor, wher I was well planted,
and haue iust reason to fear, that those yll reports wch Malice hath
raysd of me, may haue trobled her, I can leaue no honest way vntryed
to remedy these miseryes, nor find any way more honest then this, owt
of an humble and repentant hart, for the fault donne to yow, to beg
both yor pardon and assistance in my suite to my l. I should wrong yow
as much againe, as I did, if I should think yow sought to destroy me.
but though I be not hedlongly destroyd, I languish, and rust dan-
gerously. from seeking prfermts abrode, my loue and Conscience restrains
me. from hoping for them here, my lords disgracings cut me of. My Em-
prisonmts, and theyrs whose loue to me brought them to yt, hath already
cost me 40l. And the love of my frinds, though yt be not vtterly groun-
ded vpon my fortunes, yet I know suffers somewhat, in these long and
vncertain disgraces of myne. I therfore humbly beseech yow, to haue
so charitable a pitty, of what I haue, and do, and must suffer, as to take
to yor selfe the Comfort, of hauing saved from such destruction, as
yor iust Anger might haue layd upon him a sorowfull and honest man.
I was bold in my last letter to beg leaue of yow, that I might wright
to yor Daughter. Though I vnderstood therupon, that after the
Thursday yow were not displeasd that I should, yet I haue not nor
wyll not wthowt yr knowledge do yt. But now I beseech yow that
I may; since I protest before god, yt is the greatest of my afflic-
tions, not to do yt. In all the world ys not more true sorrow,
then in my hart, nor more und{er}standing of true repentance then
in yors; And therfore God, whose pardon in such cases ys never denyed,
gives me leaue to hope, that yow wyll fauorably consider my ne-
cessityes. To his mercifull guiding, and protection I commend yow,
and cease to troble yow. 1o Mart: i60i.

Yors in all humblenes
and dutifull obedience
I: Donne

leaf 1 verso || leaf 2 recto

leaf 2 verso

To the right worshipfull
Sr George More knight.