The Folger Shakespeare Library

L.b.537: Letter from John Donne, Covent Garden, to Sir Robert More, Loseley, 1614 July 28: autograph manuscript signed

Catalog record:
Collection:Papers of the More family of Loseley Park, Surrey
Preferred Citation:Letter from John Donne, Covent Garden, to Sir Robert More, Loseley, 1614 July 28: autograph manuscript signed, Papers of the More family of Loseley Park, Surrey. Transcription by Early Modern Manuscripts Online (EMMO). MS L.b.537, Folger Shakespeare Library, Washington, DC.
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leaf 1 recto

Our predecessors were neuer so conquered by the Danes
as I ame at thys tyme. for theyr comminge haue put
my litle Court busines out of the way, and dispossessed
me of so neer hopes, as lackd litle of possession.
I must confes my weaknes in thys behalfe; no man
attends court fortunes with more impatience then I
do. I esteeme nothinge more inexcusable, then to
attend them chargeably, nor any expence so chargeable,
as that of tyme. I ame so angry at theyr comminge,
that I haue not so much as inquir’d why they came.
But they are euen with mee; for, in truthe, they came
for nothinge. Statesmen, who can finde matter of
state, in any wrinckle in the kings socks, thinke that
he came for the busines of Cleue. but whether for
hys brother Saxon, or hys Cousin Brandenbourge, I
do not hear that he can tell. And the low-Country
men, thys last year, did hym such an affront, at hys
great Custome-place, the Sondt, that some thinke
he comes to vnderstand our kings disposition in that busi=
nes, if he ^shall go about to right himselfe vpon them. Others
thinke he came to correct our enormity of yellow bands,
by presentinge as many, as blew. For my particular opi-
nion, I thinke, he came to defeat mee, and retard my busines.
He came vpon fryday, and he goes vpon monday; and these two
termes limit are his history; for he doth nothinge between.
He hath brought with hym hys Chanceler, and hys Admirall; and
ys otherwise well attended. He ships 100 horse; but sent

leaf 1 verso

them back, after he had been a day at sea. He pretended
to go into Germany; but after he was at sea, he disco=
verd hys purpose; and accordingly left a Commission for the
gouerment, to be opened, after he had been certaine
dayes away. The rest of hys history, yow may finde, I
thinke, in some part of Amadis the Gaule, at your leysure.
I wyll not contribute so much to myne own ill fortune,
nor ioyne with her in a treason against myselfe, so much
as to be absent now, when my absence may give perchance
occasion, perchance excuse to others of slacknes in my busines.
therfore I have neglected my pleasure, and the litle circum=
stance of my health, (for in good faythe, my lyfe yt=
selfe ys no great Circumstance to mee) which I intended by
goinge into the Cuntry. Therfor, sir, I send backe your horse,
in as good case, as so longe rest in the Coven garden
can make hym. If I finde yt necessary to go, I wyll
be bold to aske yow, by an expresse Messenger againe,
whether yow can spare him then, or no. your poore sister
remembers her loue to your selfe and all your company. So do I,
sir, who ame euer

Yours to be commanded
Iohn Donne.
At my poore Hospitall
28 Iulii 1614

leaf 2 recto

This Mr. DonneDonne Married One of Sir George
Mores Daughters
against his Consent

leaf 2 verso

To the righte worshipful Sir
Robert More knight
At Lothesley.