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discerne what is truth in the matier. But if the Kinges Majesties directions be not obeyed there and by us dissembled howe shal we charge the rudenesse abrode that maye allege ther example for pretense of ther fault, This matier is gretter thenne wer expedient to be trewe and is more certaynly reported unto me thenne of lightlywode canne be totally false. It is not the faulte of us that be heedes to have in the numbre sum nought untyl we pass over ther faulte and suffer it unpunished. If I could have leysour to cumme myself I wolde not spare to cumme thether for this purpose being the specyal pointe of my charge. In myn absence I require the ayde of youe to knowe by your examination the truth of the matier. Wherein I praye youe use the assistence of the Masters presidentes and Doctors as aforesaid. And as wylde wanton libertie sumtyme bresteth oute in yought to ther reproch soo let sobreness and gravitie appere in us requisite for thexecution of our charge. Many hath of late repyned at the Kinges Majesties munificence in our priveleges and otherwise, and let not us geve cause that they shulde justly soo doo. Our obedience shulde be example to all other in publique directions withowte occasion of all slaunder. If lernynge shulde nowe be an instrument to sterre up dissension and trouble the common quietnesse, Ther opinion shulde be confermed which not many yeres past have laboured to prove in bokes prynted in englyshe that the universities be the corruption of the Realme. Oxford lyveth quietly with fewer priveleges thenne we have; ther be that wolde we had as fewe as theye. I entreate this offense oonly worldlye bycause the capacitie of thoffenders seemeth to stretche no farther, And he that regardeth not his obedience to his prince regardeth not moch his obedience to God and his truth which he hath offended in the other. Wherefor I pray youe let us by due examination finde the faulte where it is and soo purge ourself and what ye shall finde herein I praye youe advertise me with diligence. And so fare ye well.
At London the xxiii of Apryl
Your lovyng frend
To the right honorable and
Pleaseth it your honorable Lordship after my due commendations to knowe that according to your commandement in your laste letters I have used the wisdom of the Doctors and presidentes of all the colleges of thuniversity for the tryall of the truth concerning the tragedie, and thus was it agreed among us that every president shulde assemble ther companyes to knowe what they harde and wherwith they wer offended and so to declare so muche as they found, whereupon I might make answer to your Lordship, what was altered ther, The answer of them all after ther examinations at our next meting was that none of all ther companyes declared unto them that they were offended with any thing that nowe they remembre was then spoken, very many wether of purpose or of chance wer absent which can depose nothing. Morover to a furder tryall what was uttered I thought good to send to your Lordship a boke of thers noted and cancelled al that was onspoken, the rest uttered which boke was delivered me in presence of the Master and al the felows of Christes College, whom I convented personally for the searche of the truth, among whom I found by inquisition not above two that wer offended of the which Mr. Skot being one declared that he was neyther agreable to the playing at the first nor pleased with it when it was played, but offended in such poyntes as he shewed me he hath already declared to your Lordship. With the depositions of the which Mr. Skot to your Lordship (knowen to them before I conferred with them) I parceyved som of the company to be moche greved. Insomoche that ther is nowe rysen synes our examination an other mattier betwyxt them, whereof I have the hearyng with thassistence of Mr. Doctors Wigam Lokwode and Wendy.
Whereas of wordes of displeasure spoken betwyxt themself at home Mr. Skot feared unquietnes bi certen of them and cam to me for his aide, I called them together to knowe ther griefe and
purposed with thassistence aforesaid to have made a quietnes betwixt them and in ther chalenging one an other ther was uttered by Mr. Crane and Mr. Grenewall players of the forsaid tragedie and felows of the house that the said Mr. Skot shulde saie at such tyme as the Master and company consulted togither for the playeng of the said tragedie that the said tragedie was thorowe out poyson and therfor lyked not that it shulde be played where to shulde the said Crane answer that they entended not but to rebuke the popes usurped power wheronto shulde Skot answer that under that pretence they wolde destroy all godlynes which last wordes Mr. Skot affirmed he said but not the first, but said thus that the boke was thorough.owt poysoned. With thadvise of the foresaid assistence I caused ther very wordes to be wrytten bi ther owne handes which I send to your Lordship to be considered what weight is in them and in the meane tyme we have them all bownd with suretie to be forthe commyng til such tyme as we shall here agayne from your Lordship and knowe your pleasure, thus your Lordship see the unquietnes of som of that companye among themselves before the outward vexation nowe of late rysen of a townsman agaynst our priveleges of which it may please your Lordship to be enformed by these letters of thuniversity. And thus the holi gost preserve your Lordship in honorable estate to his pleasure. At Cambridge in benet college this viiith of Maye
Your orator at commandement there
BISHOP GARDINER'S THIRD LETTER ON THE SAME SUBJECT.
To my lovyng frend
Master Vicechauncelor after my harty commendations I perceyve by your lettres which I have receyved with the boke of the Tragedie that ye have assembled the sage of the university to knowe
by their inquisition severally in ther howses what was uttered that might and ought to offende godly eares in the playing of the same at Christes college. Wherein as appeareth by your letters reaport was made unto youe that no man is offended. And yet perusing the book of the tragedie which ye sent me I find moche matier not strycken out all which by the parties own confession was uttered very nought and on the other parte sum thing not well omitted where allowing and rejecting shulde procede of jugement and that to be taken for trewe which was uttered and that for untrewe which they note as untrewe to be omitted and left unspoken Soo as this boke declarith the parties to have double offended both in denying that is trew and also approving that is false as in sum parte by ther notes doth appere And indede in the tragedie untruth is so maliciously weved with truth as making the bishop of Rome with certain his abusers the foundation of the matier the auctors reproch whereof is true soo many abhominable and detestable lies be added and mingled with the other truth as noo Christen eares shuld paciently heare and cannot in the processe of the matier be withowt a marvelous alteration other thenne was nowe used to be dissevered a sondre. By meane whereof al other proufe fayleth there the boke maketh an undowted proufe of ther lewdnesse to me here and that which soo many of the university being present herde and offended them not soo depely but it is now worn owt and they be noo longer offended the same is by exhibition of the boke soo notified unto me and soo grevith me being absent as howe soever I forget thoffense upon ther reconciliation I shal hardly of a great while forget the matier. And if open and notorious faultes which thoffenders in pompe and triumphe soo utter as they wold have men knowe them and marke them shal from hence forth without all reformation be neglected and forgotten or soo by sylence hidden as they shal not appere to be corrected there is small hope of conservation of good ordre And a mervelous boldnesse geven to offenders the meanes of reformation thus taken awaye Wise men have noted truely that it is caput audaciæ impunitatis spes which must nedes growe where open faultes be thus neglected and pretermitted wherein they be chiefly to be blamed
that forbere to make reaporte of that they have harde whenne they be required I wold not be overy curious oonles the crime were notable to bring to light his faulte that himself hath used meanes to hide from the worlde But if the offender be soo destitute of al feare and shame as these players wer why shuld any man forbere whenne they walk in the streate naked to poynt them with his fynger and saye there they goo I here many thinges to be very far out of order both openly in the university and severally in the Colleges Whereof I am sory and amongst other in contempt of me the determination of the pronuntiation of certain grece letters agreed unto by thauctorite of the hol universite to be violate and broken without any correction therefor the matier is lowe and the contempt soo moche the more I was chosen chauncelor to be soo honoured (although above my desertes) of them and I have geven noo cause to be despised I wil do that I canne for the mayntenaunce of vertue and good ordre there and chalenge again of dutie to be regarded after the proportion not of my qualities but myn office Requiring youe Master Vicechancellor to communicate these my lettres with the Masters Presidentes and Doctours and on my behalf to desire them gravely to consider of what moment the good ordre of yough is and to withstand the lewde conduct of such as have neyther shame ne feare of punyshment and correction The lesson of obedience wold be wel taught and practised and I wylbe more diligent to knowe howe men proufite in it thenne I have been I have shewed the hol counsayl the wordes spoken by Master Scot from whom ye shal shortly receyve answer in that matier And as touching those that wer chief players in the tragedie I here very evil matier and I pray youc cal them unto youe and knowe whither they wyl acknowlege and confesse ther faulte or noo and to signifie the same unto me and soo fare ye wel At London the xiith of Maye
Your loving frend