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worde. ye yere of our lorde M.CCCCC. and xvii. The nynthe yere of ye reygne of our souerayne lorde kynge Henry ye viii. The xx. daye of June. Quarto. This translation is in prose, and the prologue contains the following paragraph,
Considering also, that the prose is more familiar unto every man than the ryhme, I Henry Watson, indygne and simple of understanding, have reduced the present book into our maternal tongue of English, out of French, at the request of my worshipful master Wynkyn de Worde, through the enticement and exhortation of the excellent Princess Margaret, Countess of Richmond and Derby, and Grandame unto our most natural sovereign King Henry the viii; whom Jesu preserve from all incumbrance.'
The parent English impression of the Ship of Fools is that of Pynson 1509, in metre, 'translated in the College of saynt mary Otery in the counte of Deounshyre, out of Laten, Frenche, and Doche into Englysshe tonge by Alexander Barclay Preste: and at that tyme Chaplen in the sayde College.' The author of the original work was Sebastian Brandt, who composed it in the German language. [Typog. Antiq.]
The seuen penytencyall Psalmes of Dauyd the kynge and prophete &c. by Johan fyssher doctoure of dyuynyte and bysshop of Rochester, &c. Enprinted &c. In the yere of our lorde MCCCCC ix.
This treatyse concernynge the fruytful saynges of Dauyd the kynge and prophete in the seuen penytencyall psalmes. Deuyded in seuen sermons was made and compyled by the ryght reuerente fader in God Johan Fyssher doctoure of dyvynyte and bysshop of Rochester at the exortacion and sterynge of the moost excellent princesse Margarete countesse of Rychemount and Derby, and moder to our souerayne lorde kynge Henry the VII.'
The Bishop says in the prologue-' for as moche as I of late, before the moost excellent pryncesse Margarete Countesse of Rychemount and Derby, publysshed the sayenges of the holy kynge and prophete Davyd of the vii penytencyall psalmes, in the whiche my sayd good and synguler lady moche delyted, at whose hygh commaundement and gracyous exhortacyon I have put the sayd sermons in wrytynge for to be impressed.' The Colophon is
'Here endeth the exposycyon of the vij psalmes. Enprynted at London in the fletestrete at the sygne of the sonne, by Wynkyn de Worde prynter vnto the moost excellent pryncesse my lady the kynges graundame. In the yere of our lorde god M.CCCCC and ix the xij daye of the moneth of Juyn.'
St John's College Library posseses two copies of the above, and also the Edition of 1525 by Wynk. de Worde. In the Library of King's College, there is the first Edition, printed by Wynkyn de Worde in 1508. Bishop Fisher's Funeral Sermon on Hen. VII. was, as we have seen, enprynted at the specyall request of the ryght excellent pryncesse Margarete, moder unto the sayd noble prynce.'
Documents relating to Bishop Fisher, several of which are referred to in the Preface. Ex Regr. Coll. Joh.
Many suites and greate troubles which the Bishop of Rochester did undergoe in the behalfe of the Colledge.
The Bishop off Ely.
The Licence of the Pope.
The Licence of Mortmayne.
The provyng off my Lady's will in the Chancery.
The besones of my Lady servaunts which wolde
have hadde all hir goods among them.
The taking awaie of mych off Lande.
The agreament with my Lady of Devonshire.
The stoppyng of that paiment.
The service for Ospring.
The service for Higham.
The service for Brommehall.
Ffirst, my Lorde of Ely wiche thene was, albeit that he hadde promysede my lady his assent for the dissolvyng of Saynte Johns housse, wiche then was a religious housse, into a College of students, yett because he hadde not sealide, he wolde not performe his promyse; and so delaide the mattere a long seasone, till at the last we were fayne to agree with hyme by the advyce of my Lord of Winchestre to our grete charge. This was the first sore brounte
that we hadde, and like to have quailede all the mattere, if it hadde not ben wiselie handelide; for upon this hong all the reste. Yff this hadde ben clerelie revoikede by hyme, we cudde not have done any thing for that College, according to my Ladys entente and wyll. And surelie this was a long tyme or that we cudde have the writyngis surelie maide, and sealide with his seale and his convent seale upon the same; for he purposlie delayde yt for causes wiche I will not here reherse.
Seconde, where we hadde sente for the pope's licence to extincte the religiouse housse, and to change it into a college of Students. When the graunte came home, it was found of no vailew; and all by the negligence off our counsell wiche devisede it. For the wiche we weare fayne to make anew writinge, and to have better counsell, and to sende agayne to the courte off Rome; wiche was a grete hinderance, and a greate tracte of tyme.
Thirde, where my lady in hir tyme hadde opteynede the kyngs licence for this change to be mayde; but she dyede or ever that it was sealyd; so that we were fayne to make anew suyte. And where allso she optenyde by the kyngs licence for mortassing off fyfty pounde lounde only and no more. Heare I hadde nott a littyll besones to opteyne a new graunte for licence of CC1i to be put in mortmayne; and coste me grete suyte and labor, both by myself, and by my frends, or that I cudde opteyne it. And iff this hadde not ben optenyde, heare wolde have beyne butt a poure college. Heare we ware so sore
ploungide in amaner in a dispayre to have brought the college in that condicione that, lovide be our lorde, it is now in.
Fforthe, it was thought expediente by the juges that for a suyrtye off the lands wiche my lady hadde putt in ffeoffament for the performance of hir will, and hadde thereof licence so to do by king Edwarde under his brode seale, and by the kyng hir son under his seale; likewise unto than all hir will and testament war performyde; I say, it was thought necessarie by the juges that my ladys will shulde be provyde in the Chauncery, over and beside the profe off ytt in my lorde of Canterbury's courte. And her was myche tyme and labore taken, more then I can tell in a few words, of attendance and ofte resortyng to the Chanceler of Englonde, often having our lernyde counsell together, often having the chef juges advises, so many writs, so many dedimus potestatem to them that war absente that shulde beare witnes in this mattere. So herde it was to gett them to bere this witnes, and to be sworne that were then present. So many suyts to the king Solicitor, the kings attorney, the king's sergeants, withouten whose assents my lorde chauncelore wolde nothing do; oonlie as thei war all presant at every act to beare recorde. This mattere, or it cudde be concludede, was a yere and a half; in doyng forsoth it was sore laboreos and paynfull unto me that many tymes I was right sory that ever I toke that besones upone me.
Ffyft, after this rose a grete storme, the wiche was sturryde by my lady servaunts; the occasion was