MEMOIRS OF LADY FANSHAWE
WIFE OF SIR RICHARD FANSHAWE, BT. AMBASSADOR FROM CHARLES II. TO THE COURTS OF PORTUGAL & MADRID WRITTEN BY HERSELF CONTAINING EXTRACTS FROM THE CORRESPONDENCE OF SIR RICHARD FANSHAWE EDITED WITH AN INTRODUCTION BY BEATRICE MARSHALL AND A NOTE UPON THE ILLUSTRATIONS BY ALLAN FEA
There is a deathless charm, despite the efforts of modern novelists and playwrights to render it stale and hackneyed, attaching to the middle of the seventeenth century—that period of upheaval and turmoil which saw a stately debonnaire Court swept away by the flames of Civil War, and the reign of an usurper succeeded by the Restoration of a discredited and fallen dynasty.
So long as the world lasts, events such as the trial and execution of Charles Stuart will not cease to appeal to the imagination and touch the hearts of those at least who bring sentiment to bear on the reading of history.
It is not to the dry-as-dust historian, however, that we go for illuminating side-lights on this ever-fascinating time, but rather to the pen-portraits of Clarendon, the noble canvases of Van Dyck, and above all to the records of individual experience contained in personal memoirs. Of these none is more charmingly and vivaciously narrated or of greater historic value and interest than the following memoir (first published in 1830) of Sir Richard Fanshawe, "Knight and Baronet, one of the Masters of the Requests, Secretary of the Latin Tongue, Burgess of the University of Cambridge, and one of His Majesty's Most Honourable Privy Council of England and Ireland, and His Majesty's Ambassador to Portugal and Spain." It was written by his widow in the evening of her days, after a life of storm and stress and many romantic adventures at home and abroad, for the benefit of the only son who survived to manhood of fourteen children, most of whom died in their chrisom robes and whose baby bones were laid to rest in foreign churchyards.
Two contemporaries of Lady Fanshawe, Mrs. Hutchinson and the Duchess of Newcastle, also wrote lives of their husbands, which continue to live as classics in our literature. But the Royalist Ambassador's wife is incomparably more sparkling and anecdotic than the Puritan Colonel's, and she does not adopt the somewhat tiresome "doormat" attitude of wifely adoration towards the subject of her memoir which "Mad Margaret" (as Pepys called her Grace of Newcastle) thought fitting when she took up her fatally facile pen to endow her idolised lord with all the virtues and all the graces and every talent under the sun.
Yet with less lavishly laid on colours, how vivid is the portrait Lady Fanshawe has painted for posterity of the gallant gentleman and scholar, one of those "very perfect gentle knights" which that age produced; loyal and religious, with the straightforward simple piety that held unwaveringly to the Anglican Church in which he had been born and brought up.
And of herself, too, she unconsciously presents a series of charming pictures. The description of her girlhood is a glimpse into the bringing up of a Cavalier maiden of quality, of the kind that is invaluable in a reconstruction of the past from the domestic side. In the town-house in Hart Street which her father, Sir John Harrison, rented for the winter months from "my Lord Dingwall," where she was born, her education was carried on "with all the advantages the time afforded." She learnt French, singing to the lute, the virginals, and the art of needlework, and confesses that though she was quick at learning she was very wild and loved "riding, running and all active pastimes."
One can picture the light-hearted "hoyting girl" breaking loose when she found herself at Balls in Hertfordshire, where the family spent the summer, and skipping and jumping for sheer joy at being alive. And then we see her at fifteen suddenly sobered by the death of her mother, a lady of "excellent beauty and good understanding," and taking upon her young shoulders the entire management of her father's household. With naive satisfaction she tells of how well she succeeded and how she won the esteem of her mother's relations and friends, being ever "ambitious to keep the best company," which she thanks God she did all the days of her life.
Her father, like other loyal gentlemen, cheerfully suffered beggary in the King's cause. His estates and property were confiscated and he himself arrested. He managed to escape to Oxford, whither his daughters followed him, to lodge over a baker's shop in a poor garret with scarcely any clothes or money, they who had till then lived in "great plenty and great order."
The seat of learning was strangely transformed by the presence there of the moribund Court indulging in its last fling of gaieties and gallantries on the eve of the debacle of Marston Moor. Soldiers swarmed in the streets and were billeted over the college gates, and gardens and groves were the trysting-place of courtiers and beautiful ladies in that fair spring-time. Oxford melted down its plate for the King and gave up its ancient halls to masques and plays for the amusement of the Queen.
Sir John Harrison and his young daughters played their part in this brilliant society. Mistress Anne's tender heart was moved to pity by the "sad spectacle of war," when starving, half-naked prisoners were marched past the windows of their lodging, but nothing could damp for long her high spirits and girlish gaiety. We are told (not by herself, but by the arch-gossip, old Aubrey) that in the company of Lady Isabella Thynne, brightest star of the Stuart Court, "fine Mistress Anne" played a practical joke on Dr. Kettle, the woman-hating President of Trinity, who resented the intrusion of petticoats into his garden, "dubbed Daphne by the wits." The lady in question aired herself there in a fantastic garment cut after the pattern of the angels, with her page and singing boy wafting perfumes and soft music before her, an apparition not likely to soothe the gigantic, choleric doctor. Lady Isabella and her friend Anne Harrison figure in one of the most graphic and remarkable chapters of "John Inglesant," in which the author has also drawn largely from these memoirs for a foundation to one of his imaginary episodes. The girl of eighteen, full of life and enthusiasm, was doubtless flattered at being taken up by the fashionable Court beauty, and may have allowed herself to be led into rather dangerous frolics, till Richard Fanshawe, a connection of her mother's family whom she had not met before, came to wait on the King at Christ Church. The two were thrown much together, and we may be sure Anne's time was now claimed by one she admired even more fervently than the eccentric Lady Isabella. Sir Richard wooed and won his fair young kinswoman amidst the alarums of war, and they were married at Wolvercot Church in May 1644, when the fritillaries were in bloom along the banks of Isis and Cavaliers still made merry in the last stronghold of a waning cause.
It must have been a picturesque group which assembled at the altar of the little quiet country church; the joyous bride with her fair young sister and handsome father of whom she was so proud, and the genial bridegroom who was of "more than the common height of men," and so popular that every one, even the King, called him Dick. Those troublous times had reduced the fortunes of both Harrisons and Fanshawes to the lowest ebb, and the young couple started their married life on 20 pounds and the forlorn hope of their Sovereign's promise of eventual compensation. When her husband went to Bristol with the Prince of Wales, we see the young wife left at Oxford, in delicate health, with scarcely a penny and a dying first-born. She relates how she was sitting in the garden of St. John's College breathing the air for the first time after her illness, when a letter came from Bristol, to her "unspeakable joy" containing fifty gold pieces and a summons to join Mr. Fanshawe, and how there was a sound of drums beating in the roadway under the garden wall, and she went up to the Mount to see Sir Charles Lee's company of soldiers march past, and as she stood leaning against a tree a volley of shot was fired to salute her, and she narrowly escaped being hit by a brace of bullets which struck the tree two inches above her head.
Thus began the long series of separations, reunions, hardships, and extraordinary adventures which this brave, fair Royalist passed through. Like Queen Henrietta Maria, she seems hardly ever to have gone to sea without being nearly "cast away." From Red Abbey in Ireland she and her babies and servants had to fly at the peril of their lives through "an unruly tumult with swords in their hands." On the Isles of Scilly she was put ashore more dead than alive, and plundered of all her possessions by the sailors. At Portsmouth she and her husband were fired upon by Dutch men-of-war, and another time they were shipwrecked in the Bay of Biscay. Yet her buoyant temperament was never crushed. She might have said with Shakespeare's Beatrice, "A star danced when I was born," so infinite was her capacity for keeping on the "windy side of care."
It was the old "hoyting girl" spirit still alive in her which prompted her to borrow the cabin boy's blue thrum-cap and tarred coat for half a crown to stand beside her husband on the deck when they were threatened by a Turkish galley on their way to Spain. But it was the true womanly spirit, tender, loving, devoted, which, after the Battle of Worcester, where Sir Richard was made a prisoner, took her every morning on foot when four boomed from the steeples, along the sleeping Strand to stand beneath his prison window on the bowling-green at Whitehall. This happened during the wettest autumn that ever was known, and "the rain went in at her neck and out at her heels."
Sir Richard was released on parole by Cromwell, and for seven years the Fanshawes lived in comparative retirement in London and at Tankersley, the seat of the Lord Strafford in Yorkshire. Here they planted fruit-trees, and Sir Richard completed most of his literary work. Even when he was walking out of doors he was seen generally with some book in his hand, "which oftentimes was poetry." He translated the "Lusiad" of de Camoens, Guarini's famous pastoral the "Pastor Fide," and various pieces from Horace and Virgil. In Yorkshire their favourite little daughter Nan, the "dear companion of her mother's travels and sorrows," died of small-pox, and they left it for Hertfordshire, where the news of the Protector's death reached them in 1658.
They were allowed now to join the Court in France, and the exiled King appointed his faithful servant Dick Fanshawe Master of the Requests and Latin Secretary. He and his wife came home with the King at the Restoration, and her account of that gala voyage is one of the brightest and most vivid that has survived. It seems literally to burst with the jubilation and new hopes born by this event in a long- distracted country.
Charles II. gave Sir Richard his portrait framed in diamonds, and sent him first on an embassy to Portugal to negotiate his marriage, and then appointed him to the still more important post of Ambassador to Spain. On June 26, 1666, he died at Madrid of fever at the age of fifty-eight.
The England to which his wife brought his body had not fulfilled the high hopes and dreams of the Restoration. The vice, and laxity of morals into which it was sinking, would certainly have been repugnant to the clean-living, high-souled statesman, and we can hardly think him unhappy in the time of his death.
He was buried with much pomp in the Church of St. Mary at Ware, and his monument stands in a side chapel near the chancel. There, thirteen years later, his loyal lady and sprightly biographer was laid beside him in the vault and beneath the monument which she says: "Cost me two hundred pounds; and here if God pleases I intend to lie myself."
An unfinished sentence gives a pathetic close to these pages, so full of touches of humour, keen observation and racy anecdote. It would seem as if the hand which wielded so descriptive and ready a pen had wearied of its task; as if, at last, the sunny nature was overcast and the merry heart saddened. But surely not another word is needed to make the narrative more perfect. Those who first become acquainted with it in this reprint will meet with many things less familiar than Lady Fanshawe's moving account of her leave-taking from Charles I. at Hampton Court, which has been quoted hundreds of times. They will be thrilled by at least three stories of the supernatural told with the elan and consummate simplicity that exceeds art, and they will be charmed with the ingenuousness of the writer when she writes about herself, and her masterly little sketches by the way of such characters of the time as Sir Kenelm Digby and Lord Goring, son of the Earl of Norwich. Indeed, we venture to think they cannot fail to find the whole book delightful, because, though relating to a long-vanished past, it is as livingly human and fresh as if written yesterday.
NOTES ON THE ILLUSTRATIONS
As will be seen from the rough pedigree appended, the Baronetcy became extinct in 1694 with Sir Richard, Lady Fanshawe's son; while the Viscountcy, which was given to this Sir Richard's uncle, Thomas, came to an end in 1716 with Simon, the fifth Viscount. The knightly and lordly branches having failed, the tail male was represented by the Fanshawes of Jenkins, of Parsloes, and of Great Singleton.
The first branch became extinct in 1705, Sir Thomas Fanshawe of Jenkins leaving no male issue, and thus the heirlooms have descended to the two latter branches. The representatives of both these families possess the portraits, manuscripts, &c., many of which came originally from Ware Park,[Footnote: By the will of Sir Henry Fanshawe, who dies in 1616, it appears that some of the older pictures came from the "gallery," and his house in Warwick Lane. He directed they should be brought to Ware Park and remain as heirlooms.] the parental house of Lady Fanshawe's Royalist husband, as well as from Jenkins and Parsloes.
But before speaking of the heirlooms it may not be out of place to say something of these old seats of the Fanshawes and one or two other places mentioned in the Memoirs.
Parsloes, which stands partly in the parish of Barking and partly in Dagenham (Essex), is now in a very forlorn and dilapidated condition. Alterations that have been made from time to time, particularly the embellishments of 1814, which have somewhat given the old mansion a Strawberry-Hill-Gothic appearance, have in a measure destroyed its original character. Yet some panelled rooms remain, and some fine carved stone fireplaces that were removed here many years ago from the adjacent Elizabethan mansion, Eastbury House. [Footnote: Vide "Picturesque Old Houses."]
Jenkins, the more important estate, which passed away from the family in the early part of the eighteenth century, was a large square-moated timber house with two towers. Remains of the old fishponds and terraces may still be traced (about a mile from Parsloes), but nothing remains of the house or of a later structure which followed it. Indeed, the very name is now forgotten.
The mansion Ware Park has also long since been pulled down and rebuilt. It was sold owing to Sir Henry Fanshawe's losses in the Royalist cause.
Of the Derbyshire seat, Fanshawe Gate, at Holmesfield near Dronfield, there are still some picturesque remains, and the Church of Dronfield contains some good sixteenth-century brasses to the early members of the family.
Lady Fanshawe's parental house, Balls Park, near Hertford, though much modernised of recent years, dates back from the reign of Charles I. By intermarriage the estate passed to the Townshends, and the late Marquis sold it a few years ago.
Among the Townshend heirlooms which were dispersed in March 1904, were many portraits of the Harrisons, including a fine full-length of Lady Anne's Cavalier brother, William, who died fighting for the King in 1643.[Footnote: As the present owner of Balls Park, Sir G. Faudel- Phillips, was a conspicuous purchaser at this sale, it may be presumed some of the Harrison portraits have found their way back to their original home.]
"Little Grove," East Barnet, another place mentioned in the Memoirs, was rebuilt in 1719, and renamed "New Place."
It would be interesting if the position of Lady Fanshawe's lodgings in Chancery Lane, "at my cousin Young's," could be located. The house there that her husband rented from Sir George Carey in 1655-6, in all probability was the same which is mentioned in the artist George Vertue's MS. Collections as the old timber house that was once the dwelling of Cardinal Wolsey. In a "great room above stairs," he said, were carved arms and supporters of the Carews [Careys], who had repaired the ceilings, &c. At the time he wrote the building was used as a tavern. [Footnote: Vide Notes and Queries. Second Series, vol. xii., pp. 1, 81; also Middlesex and Hertfordshire Notes and Querie., vol. iii., p. 30.] The house on the north side of Lincoln's Inn Fields known as "The Pine Apples," where Lady Fanshawe was living at the time of her husband's death, has disappeared with the other old residences on that side of the square. Nothing is said in the Memoirs to locate the building where she met her husband when he was brought to London a prisoner after Worcester fight. The room in Whitehall facing the Bowling-green of course perished in the fire which destroyed the Palace at the end of the seventeenth century. [Footnote: A description of Borstal Tower mentioned in the Memoirs will be found in "Picturesque Old Houses."]
In regard to the monument of Sir Richard in Ware Church, which was erected to his memory by Lady Fanshawe, it is strange that there is no record of the interment in the Register. In the Register of All Saints Church, Hertford,[Footnote: The old church, including a fine monument to the Harrisons, was completely destroyed by fire a few years ago.] however, it is stated that the body was first interred in Sir John Harrison's vault:—"1671, May 18. Sir Richard Fanshawe, Ambassador, was taken out of this vault and laid in his vault at Ware." The monument was formerly in the Chapel at the south side of Ware Church, and was afterwards removed to the east wall of the south transept. No memorial marks the last resting-place of Lady Fanshawe. She was interred in the new vault that had been prepared for her husband under St. Mary's Chapel.
As before stated, the family portraits are now in the possession of the descendants of the half-brothers William [Footnote: It was William who married Mary Sarsfield, nee Walter, the Duke of Monmouth's sister. Vide "King Monmouth."] and John Fanshawe, the sons of Lady Fanshawe's cousin, John Fanshawe.
The portraits of the Parsloes branch remained in the old Essex house until some thirty years ago, when they were removed to a town residence. They included Lady Fanshawe's portrait (reproduced here), the original of that engraved in her Memoirs in 1830 (by no means too faithfully); portraits of her husband Sir Richard, by Dobson [Footnote: An interesting portrait of Sir Richard in fancy dress by Dobson is at West Horsley Place.] and Lely; Sir Simon (the rake), with Naseby Field in the background: Sir Richard's grandfather, Thomas, Remembrancer to Queen Elizabeth; Alice, the second wife of Sir Richard's cousin, John of Parsloes (the daughter of his cousin Sir Thomas Fanshawe of Jenkins, and the mother-in-law of the Duke of Monmouth's half-sister, Mary Walter); Sir Richard's nephew, Thomas, the second Viscount (in breastplate and flowing wig), and his second wife, Lady Sarah, the daughter of Sir John Evelyn and widow of Sir John Wray. [Footnote: The ancient Lincolnshire family of Wray is mentioned in the Introduction of "King Monmouth" in connection with the remarkable portrait of the Duke after decapitation, which formerly was in the possession of Sir Cecil Wray. Since writing on this subject it occurs to me that it is very possible that the picture may have come originally to the Wrays through Lady Sarah Fanshawe, her husband being a cousin of the Duke's sister's second husband. Mary Fanshawe, nee Walter, it is very possible may have come into the possession of the portrait (perhaps after Henrietta, Lady Wentworth's death, for whom there is a tradition the picture was originally painted), and her straitened circumstances may have induced her to part with the work to the relatives of her kinswoman.]
The original MS. of the Memoirs (of which, thanks to the courtesy of the owner, Mr. E. J. Fanshawe, I am able to give an illustration) is bound in old red leather, and bears the Fanshawe arms. It was written in 1676 for Lady Fanshawe's "most dear and only" surviving son. This Sir Richard, the second Baronet, died in Clerkenwell in July 1694, having some years previously had the misfortune through illness to become deaf and dumb.
Comment at various times has been made upon the inaccuracy of the printed Memoirs, but judging from a personal inspection of the original, there appear to be but few serious errors. [Footnote: "Turning" for "Trimming instruments" (in Lady Anne's will), and such like slips. See p. 29.]
It must, however, be pointed out that the editor, Sir Harris Nicholas, only used a COPY of the Memoirs which was made from the original in 1766 by Charlotte Colman, Lady Fanshawe's great grand-daughter. The editor's transcript, though made ten years later, was not published until half a century afterwards. [Footnote: Vide Preface of 1830 Edition.] I draw attention to this fact as the Rev. T. L. Fanshawe, the grandfather of the present owner of the MS., was under the impression that his original Memoirs when lent to a friend had been copied and printed without permission, which in the face of the above statement could not have been the case. [Footnote: I have been indebted to Mr. Walter Crouch, Mr. R. T. Andrews, and to Mr. H. W. King's Notes on the Fanshawe Family, 1868-72, for some of the above information.]
NOTES ON THE ILLUSTRATIONS
MEMOIRS OF LADY FANSHAWE
EXTRACTS FROM THE CORRESPONDENCE OF SIR RICHARD FANSHAWE ILLUSTRATIVE OF MEMOIR
PEDIGREE SHOWING THE RELATIONSHIPS OF THE VARIOUS MEMBERS OF THE FANSHAWE FAMILY MENTIONED IN LADY FANSHAWE'S MEMOIRS
LIST OF ILLUSTRATIONS
Anne, Lady Fanshawe....Frontispiece From a painting formerly at Parsloes
The Original Manuscript of the Fanshawe Memoirs
Ware Park, Hertfordshire From an old print in the possession of R. T. Andrews, Esq.
Parsloes, Essex Present day
Sir Richard Fanshawe, Bart From a painting by Lely in the possession of Captain Stirling
Anne, Lady Fanshawe From a painting by Lely in the possession of Captain Stirling
The arrival of Catherine of Braganza at Portsmouth, on May 14, 1662 From a contemporary print
The Queen's arrival at Whitehall, August 23, 1662 (vide Pepys' Diary of that date) From a contemporary print
Anne, Lady Fanshawe From an old print in the possession of E. J. Fanshawe, Esq.
Sir Richard Fanshawe, Bart From an engraving by Farthorne in the possession of E. J. Fanshawe, Esq.
All Saints' Church, Hertford From an old print in the possession of R. T. Andrews, Esq.
Monument in Ware Church Erected to the Memory of her husband by Lady Fanshawe
It may, possibly, be thought unnecessary to prefix to this work a biographical sketch of the persons whose careers are faithfully related in it; and it may be considered an act of imprudence to place the cold and measured statements of an Editor in juxta-position with the nervous and glowing narrative of the amiable historian of the lives of her husband and herself. The latter objection, however true, ought not to prevent such remarks being made as may cause her labours to be better understood, and more highly appreciated; especially, as information can be supplied, and in a few instances, comments submitted, which may render that justice to the writer it was impossible for her to do to herself.
These pages will, however, contain a statement of the chief events of the lives of Sir Richard and Lady Fanshawe; and although most of them are mentioned in her Memoir, they are so frequently interrupted by anecdotes and reflections, as well as by accounts of places and ceremonies, that it is often difficult to follow her. This article may then be considered as the outline of a picture, which is filled up by a far abler and more pleasing artist; or, perhaps, it bears a nearer resemblance to the graphic references which generally accompany the descriptions of paintings, for the purpose of illustrating them.
The genealogy of the Fanshawe family is so fully stated in the Memoir, that it is not requisite to allude to the subject, farther than to observe, that Sir Richard was descended from an ancient and respectable house; that many of its members filled official situations under the Crown, and were honoured with Knighthood; that he was the fifth and youngest son of Sir Henry Fanshawe, of Ware Park, in Hertfordshire, Knight, by Elizabeth, daughter of Thomas Smythe, Esq., Farmer of the Customs to Queen Elizabeth, the younger son of an ancient Wiltshire family, and ancestor of the Viscounts Strangford; and that his eldest brother was raised to the peerage by the title of Viscount Fanshawe, of Dromore, in Ireland.
Sir Richard Fanshawe was born at Ware Park, in June 1608, and was baptized on the 12th of that month. His father having died in 1616, when he was little more than seven years old, the care of his education devolved upon his mother, who placed him under the celebrated schoolmaster, Thomas Farnaby; and in November 1623 he was admitted a Fellow-commoner of Jesus College, Cambridge, where he is said to have prosecuted his studies with success, and to have evinced a taste for classical literature. Being intended for the Bar, he was entered of the Inner Temple on the 22nd of January 1626; but that profession ill-accorded with his genius, and he appears to have selected it in obedience to the wishes of his mother, rather than from his own choice. It has been supposed that he continued his legal pursuits until her death left him free to follow his inclination to travel; but this is not the fact, as he had returned to England before her decease. At what period he abandoned the law is not known; but about 1627 he went abroad, with the view of acquiring foreign languages. Lady Fanshawe says that the whole stock of money with which he commenced his travels did not exceed eighty-five pounds; that he proceeded first to Paris, where he remained for twelve months, and thence went to Madrid; and that he did not return to England for some years. In 1630 he was appointed Secretary to Lord Aston's embassy to the Court of Spain, in consequence of the information which he possessed of the country; but in attaining that knowledge he spent great part of his patrimony, which amounted only to 50 pounds per annum, and 1500 pounds in money.
When Lord Aston was recalled, Mr. Fanshawe remained as the Charge d'Affaires until Sir Arthur Hopton was nominated Ambassador to Madrid; and he arrived in England in 1637 or 1638. For two years after his return, he seems to have been in constant expectation of some appointment, but his views were frustrated by Secretary Windebank. At the expiration of that time, his eldest brother resigned to him the situation of Remembrancer of the Court of Exchequer, but upon terms which prevented its being of any immediate pecuniary advantage. The Civil War, however, then broke out and being one of the King's sworn servants, he attended his Majesty to Oxford, where he met the fair author of these Memoirs.
Anne, the eldest daughter of Sir John Harrison, of Balls, in the county of Hertford, by Margaret, daughter of Robert Fanshawe, of Fanshawe Gate Esq., great uncle of Sir Richard Fanshawe, was born in St. Olave's, Hart Street, London, on the 25th of March 1625. Of her education and early life she has given a pleasing description, and, until the Civil War, her family lived in uninterrupted happiness. Her father having warmly espoused the Royal cause, he attended the Court to Oxford, and desired his daughters to come to him in that city, where they endured many privations, "living in a baker's house in an obscure street, and sleeping in a bad bed in a garret, with bad provisions, no money, and little clothes." The picture of Oxford at that moment is truly deplorable, and the sufferings of the royalists appear to have been very severe, but which she describes as having been borne "with a martyr-like cheerfulness." The offer of a Baronetcy to her father—the only return which it was then in the power of the Crown to bestow, for the heavy losses he had sustained—was gratefully declined on the ground of poverty. In 1644 important changes took place in her family, or, as she poetically expresses it, alluding to the state of public affairs, "as the turbulence of the waves disperses the splinters of the rock," so were they separated. Her brother William died in consequence of a fall from his horse, which was shot under him in a skirmish against a party of the Earl of Essex the year before; and on the 18th of May she became the wife of Mr. Fanshawe, in Wolvercot Church, two miles from Oxford, being then in her twentieth year, and her husband about thirty-six. He was at that time Secretary at War, and was promised promotion the first opportunity. The fortune of each was in expectation: they were, she says, "truly merchant adventurers," their whole capital being only twenty pounds; and, to preserve the simile, that capital was laid out in the articles of his trade—in pens, ink, and paper. What was wanting in money was amply supplied by prudence and affection; and there is no difficulty in believing her assurance, that they lived better than those whose prospects were much brighter.
Whilst at Oxford, in 1644, the University conferred upon Mr. Fanshawe the degree of Doctor of Laws. In the beginning of March 1645 he attended the Prince to Bristol, but in consequence of his wife's confinement, she did not accompany him; and the circumstances of their separation are affecting. She joined him in that city in May, at which time he was appointed Secretary to the Prince of Wales, but in consequence of the plague they quitted Bristol, in July 1645, and proceeded with his Royal Highness to Barnstaple, and thence to Launceston and Truro, in Cornwall. From Truro the Court removed to Pendennis Castle; and early in April 1646 the Prince and his suite embarked for the Scilly Islands. Great as their privations were at Oxford, they were much exceeded by their sufferings at Scilly; and no one can peruse the description of their voyage to and lodgings in that island with indifference. To illness were added cold and hunger: they were plundered by their friends in flying from their enemies; and to add to the misery of their situation, Mrs. Fanshawe was very near her confinement.
After passing three weeks in that desolate place, the Prince and his suite went to Jersey, where they were hospitably received; and where Mrs. Fanshawe gave birth to her second child. On the Prince's quitting Jersey in July, for Paris, Mr. Fanshawe's employment ceased; and he remained in that island with Lord Capell, Lord Hopton, and the Chancellor, for a fortnight after his Royal Highness's departure, when he and his wife went to Caen, to his brother Lord Fanshawe, who was ill, leaving their infant at Jersey, under the care of Lady Carteret, the wife of the Governor. From Caen, Mrs. Fanshawe was sent to England, by her husband, to raise money: she arrived in London early in September 1646, where she succeeded in obtaining permission for him to compound for his estates for the sum of 300 pounds, and to return.
They continued in England until October 1647, living in great seclusion; and in July in that year, whilst the unfortunate Charles was at Hampton Court, Mr. Fanshawe waited upon him, and received his instructions to proceed to Madrid. Mrs. Fanshawe states that she had three audiences of his Majesty at Hampton Court, and her description of the last interview with which she and her husband were honoured, exhibits the injured monarch as a husband, a father, a master, a sovereign, and a Christian, in the most pleasing light, and is ample evidence of the natural goodness of his heart. "The last time I ever saw him," she says, "was on taking my leave. I could not refrain from weeping, and when he saluted me, I prayed to God to preserve his Majesty with long life and happy years. He stroked me on the cheek, and said, 'Child, if God pleaseth it shall be so; but both you and I must submit to God's will, and you know in what hands I am.' Turning to Mr. Fanshawe, he said, 'Be sure, Dick, [Footnote: That the Royal family were accustomed to address Mr. Fanshawe in so familiar a manner, appears from a letter from the Duke of York, afterwards James the Second, dated at Paris, 18th November, 1651, to Sir Edward Nicholas: "I have received yours of the 8th of November from the Hague, and with it that from DICK FANSHAWE."—Evelyn's Correspondence, vol. v. p. 188.] to tell my son all that I have said, and deliver those letters to my wife. Pray God bless her! I hope I shall do well;' and taking him in his arms, observed, 'Thou hast ever been an honest man, and I hope God will bless thee, and make thee a happy servant to my son, whom I have charged in my letter to continue his love and trust to you;' adding, 'I do promise you, that if ever I am restored to my dignity, I will bountifully reward you both for your services and sufferings.'"
In the few days they passed at Portsmouth, previous to their quitting England in October 1647, they narrowly escaped being killed by a shot fired into the town by the Dutch fleet. From that place they embarked for France, but returned to England, in April 1648, by Jersey, whence they brought with them their daughter, whom they had left under the care of Lady Carteret. In September Mr. Fanshawe attended the Prince of Wales on board the fleet in the Downs, in which a division existed, part being for the King and part for the Parliament. The Prince resolved to reduce the latter to obedience by force, but a storm separated the ships, and prevented an engagement. Three months afterwards, Mr. Fanshawe went to Paris on the Prince's affairs, whither he was followed by his wife; and they passed six weeks there in the society of the Queen-Mother and the Princess Royal and their suite, amongst whom was the poet Waller and his wife. From Paris they went to Calais, where they met Sir Kenelm Digby, who related some of his extraordinary stories: from that town she again went to England with the hope of raising money for her husband's subsistence abroad and her own at home. Mr. Fanshawe was sent to Flanders; and thence, in the February following, into Ireland, to receive whatever money Prince Rupert could raise by the fleet under his command, but that effort proved unsuccessful. At her husband's desire, Mrs. Fanshawe proceeded with her family to join him, and landed at Youghal after a hazardous voyage. They took up their residence at Red Abbey, a house belonging to Dean Boyle, near Cork, and passed six months in comparative tranquillity, receiving great kindness from the nobility and gentry of the neighbourhood.
Their happiness, however, was but transitory. On the 2nd of September in that year Mr. Fanshawe was created a Baronet; and it is singular that no other allusion should occur to the circumstance in the Memoir than a notice of his having left the patent in Scotland before the battle of Worcester.
The Queen received them at Paris with great attention; and after many acts of favour, she despatched Sir Richard to the King, who was then on his way to Scotland. Lady Fanshawe and her husband proceeded to Calais, it being necessary that she should go to England to procure money for his journey, and in the mean time he intended to reside in Holland; but circumstances caused him to be immediately sent into Scotland, where he was received with marked kindness by the King and by the York party, who gave him the custody of the Great Seal and Privy Signet. No persuasions could induce him to take the Covenant; but he performed the duties of his office with a zeal and temper which, we are told, obtained for him the esteem of all parties.
Lady Fanshawe continued in London, in a state of great uneasiness about Sir Richard, having two young children to maintain, with very limited resources; and to add to her discomfort, she was again very near her confinement. She observes, that she seldom went out of her lodgings, and spent her time chiefly in prayer for the deliverance of the King and her husband. A daughter, Elizabeth, was born on the 24th of June, and on her recovery she went to her brother-in-law's, at Ware Park, where the news reached her of the battle of Worcester, on the 3rd of September; and after some days' suspense, she learned that Sir Richard was taken prisoner.
She then hastened to town, intending to seek him wherever he might be; but on her arrival she learned from him that he would shortly be brought to London, and he appointed a place near Charing Cross where she should meet him. Their interview lasted only a few hours; after which he was conveyed to Whitehall, and was closely confined there for ten weeks, expecting daily to be put to death. The manner in which she went secretly to his prison at four o'clock every morning, and her unwearied zeal to alleviate his sufferings, afford a beautiful example of female devotion; and it was owing to her exertions alone that he was ultimately released on bail.
Illness induced Sir Richard to go to Bath, in August 1652, the greater part of the winter of which year they passed at Benford, in Hertfordshire; but having occasion to wait on the Earl of Strafford, in Yorkshire, his Lordship offered him a house in Tankersley Park, which he accepted. His family removed thither in March 1652, and during his residence there he amused himself in literary pursuits, and translated Luis de Camoens. The death of their favourite daughter Anne, on the 23rd of July 1654, at the age of between nine and ten, made them quit Tankersley, and they proceeded to Homerton, in Huntingdonshire, the seat of Sir Richard Fanshawe's sister, Lady Bedell, where they resided six months; when he being sent for to London, and forbidden to go beyond five miles of it, his wife and children removed to the metropolis. Excepting a visit to Frog Pool, in Kent, the residence of Sir Philip Warwick, they remained in London until July 1656, during which time Lady Fanshawe had two children, and her husband suffered severely from illness.
Tired of living in town, Sir Richard obtained permission to go to Bengy, in Hertfordshire, where he and his wife were attacked with an ague, which confined her to her bed for many months, and did not finally leave her for nearly two years, when a visit to Bath perfectly restored them both. The news of Cromwell's death, in September 1658, which reached them whilst in that city, caused them to go to London, with the hope of Sir Richard's getting released from his bail; and under the pretence of becoming tutor to the son of the Earl of Pembroke, whilst on his travels, he was permitted to leave England. On his arrival at Paris, he wrote to Lord Clarendon, acquainting him with his escape, and desiring him to inform his Majesty of the circumstance. About April 1659, his Lordship replied that the King was then going into Spain, but that on his return, which would be in the beginning of the winter, he should come to his Majesty, who in the meantime gave him the situations of one of the Masters of Requests, and Latin Secretary.
Sir Richard Fanshawe then requested his wife to come to Paris with part of his children, but her application for a passport was refused; and she relates the ingenious manner in which she imposed upon the Government, by obtaining a pass in the name of Anne Harrison; the pretended wife of a young merchant, and altering the word to Fanshawe, by which means she escaped to Calais, and joined her husband at Paris.
Charles the Second came to Combes, near Paris, on a visit to his mother, in November 1659, where Sir Richard and Lady Fanshawe had an interview with him, and were received most graciously, with promises of future protection. Sir Richard being desired to follow his Majesty to Flanders, he went thither in December, having previously sent his wife to London for money, where she arrived with her children in January 1660. Soon afterwards she followed him to Newport, Bruges, Ghent, and Brussels, where the Royal family of England were residing, by all of whom they were treated with kindness. After staying three weeks at Brussels, Sir Richard and Lady Fanshawe went to Breda, where they heard of the Restoration, at which place, in April, his Majesty is said to have conferred on him the honour of Knighthood, [Footnote: Biographia Britannica.] though the fact is not mentioned in the Memoir.
On joining the King at the Hague, he promised to reward Sir Richard's fidelity and sufferings, by appointing him Secretary of State; but through the machinations of "that false man," as Lady Fanshawe calls Lord Clarendon, the royal word was not fulfilled. When his Majesty embarked for England, Sir Richard was ordered to attend him in his own ship; and a frigate was appointed to convey his family. The morning after Charles's arrival at Whitehall, Lady Fanshawe, with some other ladies, waited upon him to offer their congratulations, on which occasion he assured her of his favour, and presented Sir Richard with his portrait set in diamonds. To the Parliament summoned immediately after the restoration he was returned for the University of Cambridge; and "had the good fortune," his affectionate biographer says, "to be the first chosen, and the first returned member of the Commons House in Parliament, after the King came home; and this cost him no more than a letter of thanks, and two brace of bucks, and twenty broad pieces of gold to buy them wine." To the jealousy of Lord Clarendon, who was anxious to remove Sir Richard from about the King's person, Lady Fanshawe imputes the circumstance of his being sent to Portugal to negotiate the marriage with the Princess Katharine, to whom he was charged to present his Majesty's picture; but this appointment is strong proof of the confidence which was reposed in his discretion and abilities. He returned to England in December, and during his absence Lady Fanshawe remained in London, where she gave birth to a daughter in January 1662. On the arrival of the Queen at Portsmouth, Sir Richard Fanshawe was sent to receive her, and was present at her marriage, the description of which ceremony is historically valuable.
Early in 1662 he was nominated a Privy Counsellor of Ireland: in August he was again sent on an embassy to Lisbon, and was accompanied by his wife and children. Their journey to Plymouth, their voyage, their arrival at Lisbon, their reception at Court, and the city, are minutely described. After a year's residence in Portugal, Sir Richard was recalled: he returned to London in September 1663, and proceeded to wait on the King at Bath, who was pleased to raise him to the rank of a Privy Counsellor. In January 1664, he was appointed Ambassador to the Court of Madrid, and having embarked at Portsmouth, with a numerous retinue, on board a squadron on the 31st of that month, they arrived at Cadiz on the 23rd of February.
Nearly the whole of the remainder of the Memoir is filled with an account of their journey to Madrid, of their splendid reception, of the manners of the Spaniards, of various places, and of public events and ceremonies. These descriptions display considerable judgment and quickness of observation, and contain some valuable information. Many of the anecdotes which occur are interesting, and like every other part of the narrative, they are told with a simplicity which renders it impossible to doubt their accuracy.
At Madrid, Lady Fanshawe gave birth to her son Richard; and the prayer which she breathes for his prosperity exhibits her piety and affection in lively colours. Sir Richard Fanshawe went on a mission to Lisbon in January 1664, and returned to Madrid early in March following. On the 17th of December 1665, he signed a treaty with the Spanish minister, but the King refused to ratify it, and he was recalled, when the Earl of Sandwich was sent to replace him, who arrived at Corunna in March following. Previous to this circumstance, Lady Fanshawe intended to return to England to see her father, who was on the verge of the grave; but she then resolved to wait for Sir Richard's departure.
She was now, however, destined to experience the severest of all her trials, in the death of her husband, who, after introducing Lord Sandwich at Court on the 15th of June, was seized with an ague, and expired on the 26th of the same month. [Footnote: According to the inscription on his monument, he died on the SIXTEENTH of June; the discrepancy arose from the difference in the style.]
No other language could convey an adequate idea of Lady Fanshawe's feelings under her loss, than that in which she has expressed them; and her address to the Almighty on her sufferings merits every possible praise.
Some of Sir Richard Fanshawe's biographers have imputed his death to a broken heart, in consequence of his being recalled; but this is a gratuitous assertion, for nothing of the kind is hinted in the Memoir, though the conduct of Lord Clarendon and others towards him is severely commented upon. His letter to the King on the occasion is preserved, from which it is evident that he felt his recall deeply, but the gracious communication by which it was accompanied lessened the severity of the act, and he seems anxiously to have looked forward to his arrival in England to defend his conduct.
Lady Fanshawe resolved on accompanying her husband's corpse to England; but, previous to her quitting Madrid, the Queen-Regent of Spain offered her a pension, and promised to provide for her children, if she and they would embrace the Roman Catholic faith; an offer, which it would be an insult to her memory to attribute any merit to her for refusing. Having disposed of her plate, furniture, and horses, she left the Siete Chimeneas, in a private manner, on the 8th of July, and observes, "Never did any ambassador's family come into Spain so gloriously, or went out so sad." She reached Bilboa on the 21st of July, where Sir Richard's corpse awaited her arrival, and remained there until the 3rd of October. The mournful train then proceeded towards England, by Bayonne and Paris, where they arrived on the 30th of October. After an audience of the Queen-Mother, Lady Fanshawe set out for Calais; and on the 2nd of November was conveyed to the Tower Wharf in a French vessel-of-war. On the 26th, the body of Sir Richard, attended by seven of the gentlemen of his suite, was interred in Allhallows Church, in Hertford, whence it was removed, in May 1671, to a vault in St. Mary's Chapel in Ware Church, where his widow erected a handsome monument, with the following inscription to his memory:—
In Hypogeo, juxta hoc monumentum, jacet corpus nobilissimi viri RICARDI FANSHAWE, Equitis Aurati et Baronetti, ex antiqua illa familia de Ware Parke, in comitatu Hertfordiae, Henrici Fanshawe, Equitis Aurati, prolis decimae. Uxorem duxit Annam filiam natu maximam Johannis Harrison, Equitis Aurati, de Balls, in com. Hertfordiae; et ex ea suscepit sex filios et octo filias; e quibus supersunt Ricardus, Catherina, Margarita, Anna, et Elizabetha. Vir comitate morum, luce fidei, constantia, praestantissimus, qui olim (laetus exul) serenissimi regis Caroli Secundi calamitates fortiter amplexus est, in Rebus bellicis, ab eodem constitutus Secretarius, posteaque (Regno ei feliciter restaurato) libellorum supplicum Magister, a Latinis epistolis, a sanctioribus Regis consiliis tum Angliae, tum Hiberniae factus; pro Academia Cantabrigiensi Burgensis; Necnon ejusdem serenissimi Regis ad utrasque Aulas Portugal. et Hispan. Legatus, in quarum proxima, cum pulcherrime officio suo functus esset, splendidissimam quamdiu egerat Vitam cum luctuosa morte commutavit. Monumentum hoc, cum Hypogeo, moestissima conjux pie posuit, quas etiam corpus Mariti sui ab urbe Madrid huc per terras transtulit.
Obiit 16 de Junii, anno Dom MDCLXVI aetatis suae LIX. [Footnote: Clutterbuck's History of Hertfordshire, vol. iii. page 311. The following arms occur on the monument: Quarterly, 1st and 4th, Or, a chevron between three fleurs-de-lis Sable, Fanshawe ancient; 2nd and 3rd, cheeky Argent and Azure, a cross Gules, Fanshawe modern, being an honourable augmentation granted in 1650: on an escutcheon in the centre, the arms of Ulster. Impaling, Checky, a cross, thereon five pheons' heads, pointing upwards. Harrison. Crest, on a wreath, Or and Azure, a dragon's head erased Or, vomiting fire. On a label under the arms these mottos: "Dux vitae ratio." "In Christo victoria."]
Sir Richard Fanshawe was buried with much pomp; and a full account of the ceremony occurs in his funeral certificate in the College of Arms.
From the King, the Queen, the Court, and some of the ministers, Lady Fanshawe received much sympathy and kindness; but, in common with every other person who had pecuniary claims on the Government, she experienced great difficulty in procuring the arrears due to her husband, and it was not until nearly three years that the whole was paid; by which delay, she says, she sustained a loss of above two thousand pounds. At the instigation of Lord Shaftesbury, of whom she speaks with the utmost bitterness, she was obliged to pay the same amount for the plate furnished to the embassy.
Of the tardy manner in which Sir Richard Fanshawe's allowance was paid, and the embarrassment into which he was consequently thrown, he has left ample proof in his letter to his brother-in-law Sir Philip Warwick, dated a few weeks before his death; in which he tells him that he had been obliged to pawn his plate for his subsistence.
Lady Fanshawe states in a very feeling manner the situation in which she found herself after her husband's death; and it is scarcely possible to read her allusions to his long and faithful services, and the heavy sacrifices which he made, without admitting the justice of the charge so often brought against Charles, of being neglectful of his servants. It is, however, more than possible that the fault was not the monarch's alone. He was surrounded by greedy and selfish courtiers, each eager to advance his own interest, and possessed of similar claims on the ground of services; and as the spoils out of which they sought to enrich themselves were limited, it was an obvious point of policy to oppose the demands of others. The few years which succeeded the Restoration are among the most disgraceful in the annals of this country; and to the evidence which exists of the want of principle which characterised the Court of Charles the Second, these Memoirs are no slight addition. The monarch was heartless and profligate; his ministers, with very few exceptions, were intent alone on the promotion of their own interests; and services and sufferings were nothing in the balance against the influence of the royal mistresses. In such a state of things, merit availed but little; and with a host of other zealous adherents of the royal family, at a time when fidelity was attended with the fearful penalties attached to high treason, Sir Richard Fanshawe, after thirty years' devotion to his master, and spending a fortune in his cause, was sacrificed to the intrigues of his enemies, and probably was only spared by death from greater mortifications.
To this outline of the lives of Sir Richard and Lady Fanshawe little remains to be added. The Memoir, though continued to the year 1670, contains very few facts after her return to England which are deserving of notice. It is manifest that her hopes were destroyed, and that her only happiness consisted in reflecting on the past. Her first object was to reduce her establishment according to her altered fortune, and the second to educate her family. In 1670 she lost her excellent father, whose death added heavily to her misfortunes; but she possessed that resource against human woes which can only be inspired by a reliance upon Him who never deserts the widow and the fatherless. Her life had been marked by extreme vicissitudes; and at its conclusion—dark and cheerless as it was—she wisely looked for consolation where she had so frequently found it, and where, it may be confidently said, it is never sought in vain.
Of the conduct of Sir Richard Fanshawe, as a servant of the Crown, and as a husband and a father, sufficient is said in the Memoir; but it is desirable to notice his literary labours, which are stated in the Biographia Britannica to consist of—
1. An English translation, in rhyme, of the celebrated Italian pastoral, called "Il Pastor Fido, or, the Faithful Shepherd," written originally by Battista Guarini. Printed at London, 1646, 4to, and in 1664, 8vo.
2. Select parts of Horace translated into English, 1652, 8vo.
3. A translation from English into Latin verse, of "The Faithful Shepherdess," a pastoral, written originally by John Fletcher. London, 1658.
4. In the octavo edition of "The Faithful Shepherdess," anno 1664, are inserted the following poems by Sir Richard, viz.: 1. An Ode upon occasion of his Majesty's Proclamation in 1630, commanding the gentry to reside upon their estates in the country. 2. A summary Discourse on the Civil Wars of Rome, extracted from the best Latin writers in verse and prose. 3. An English translation of the fourth book of the AEneid of Virgil or the Loves of Dido and AEneas. 4. Two Odes out of Horace, relating to the civil wars of Rome, against covetous rich men. 5. He translated, from Portuguese, into English, "The Luciad, or Portugal's Historical Poem"; written originally by Luis de Camoens. London, 1655, fol. From the many corrections in the Translator's copy, in the possession of the late Edm. Turnor, Esq., it appears to have been very negligently printed, which may in some degree account for the remarks of Mr. Mickle on Sir Richard's translation. After his decease, namely in 1671, two of his posthumous pieces in 4to were published, Querer per solo querer: "To love only for love's sake," a dramatic piece, represented before the King and Queen of Spain; and Fiestas de Aranjuez: "Festivals at Aranjuez"; both written originally in Spanish, by Antonio de Mendoza; upon occasion of celebrating the birthday of King Philip IV. in 1621, at Aranjuez. They were translated by Sir Richard in 1654, during his confinement at Tankersley Park, in Yorkshire; which situation induced him to write the following stanzas:
"Time was, when I, a pilgrim of the seas, When I, 'midst noise of camps and court's disease, Purloin'd some hours, to charm rude cares with verse, Which flame of faithful shepherd did rehearse.
"But now, restrain'd from sea, from camp, from court, And by a tempest blown into a port, I raise my thoughts to muse of higher things, And echo arms and loves of queens and kings.
"Which queens (despising crowns and Hymen's band) Would neither man obey, nor man command; Great pleasure from rough seas to see the shore; Or, from firm land, to see the billows roar."
Sir Richard, to whom Mr. Campbell assigns the merit of having given "to our language some of its earliest and most important translations from modern literature," [Footnote: Specimens of the Poets.] wrote several other articles, which he had not leisure to complete; and it is said that "some of the before mentioned printed pieces have not all the perfection which our ingenious author could have given them, but that is not the case with his excellent translation of Pastor Fido." [Footnote: Biographia Britannica.]
That translation is highly complimented by Denham, who observes,
"Such is our pride, or folly, or our fate, That few but such as cannot write translate;"
and after censuring servile translators, he says—
"Secure of fame, thou justly dost esteem Less honour to create than to redeem; That servile path thou nobly dost decline, Of tracing word by word, and line by line."
"That master's hand, which to the life can trace The air, the line, the features, of the face, May with a free and bolder stroke express A varied posture, or a flatt'ring dress; He could have made those like, who made the rest, But that he knew his own design was best."
Part of Sir Richard Fanshawe's official correspondence, during his embassies in Spain and Portugal, was published in 1701, from which many extracts have been printed at the end of this volume; but the latest letter therein is dated 26th January 1665. The rough copies of his correspondence from that time until his death, are preserved in the Harleian MS. 7010, in the British Museum, the most interesting parts of which are added to the other extracts.
Lady Fanshawe wrote her Memoir in the year 1676, and died on the 20th January 1679-80, in her fifty-fifth year. Her will is dated on the 30th October, 31st Car. II., 1679, in which she desired that her body might be privately buried in the Chapel of St. Mary in Ware Church, close to her husband, in the vault which she had purchased of the Bishop of London. She ordered her house in Little Grove, in East Barnet, with all the jewels, plate, and pictures therein, to be sold. To her son, Sir Richard Fanshawe, she bequeathed the lease of the manor of Faunton Hall, in Essex, which she held of the Bishop of London, on condition that when he possessed his office in the Custom- House, or any other employment of the value of 500 pounds a year, he should pay to his eldest sister Katherine 1200 pounds, or deliver up the said lease to her. She also left him her own and her husband's picture set in gold, his father's picture by Lilly, and her own by Toniars, with all her seals, particularly a gold ring, with an onyx- stone, engraved, her purse of medals, all the gold she had by her at the time of her death, a Spanish towel, and comeing-cloth, together with all the books, MSS., writings, &c., sticks, guns, swords, and turning instruments, which belonged to her late husband. To her daughter, Katherine Fanshawe, she left 600 pounds of which sum 500 pounds were given her by her grandfather, Sir John Harrison, at his decease, a warrant for a Baronet, probably her husband's, and all her jewels. To her daughters Anne Fanshawe and Elizabeth Fanshawe 600 pounds each, of which sums 500 pounds were given to each of them by their said grandfather. To her daughter Katherine she bequeathed the Work written by herself, by her said daughter Katherine, or by her sisters. She requested that her son Richard and her three daughters would wear mourning for three years after her decease, namely, mourning with plain linen, excepting either of them married in the meantime; and she appointed her eldest daughter, Katherine, her sole executrix, who proved her will on the 6th February 1679-80.
Of her numerous children, the following particulars have been gleaned from her Memoir and other sources.
1. HARRISON, born in the parish of St. John's Oxford, 22nd February 1644-5, and was there buried in the same year.
2. HENRY, born in Portugal Row, Lincoln's Inn Fields, London, 30th July 1647, died on the 20th October 1650, and was buried in the Protestant burying-ground at Paris.
3. RICHARD, born 8th June 1648, died before October 1650.
4. HENRY, born in November 1657, and dying in the same year, was buried in Bengy Church, in Hertfordshire.
5. RICHARD, born at Lisbon, 26th June 1663; he lived a few hours only, and was there buried in the Esperanza.
6. RICHARD, born at Madrid, 6th August 1665, to whom the Memoir was addressed. He succeeded his father in 1666, and became the second Baronet. He is said to have been deprived of his hearing, and at length of his speech, in consequence of a fever, and to have died unmarried about 1695, [Footnote: Le Neve's MSS. in the College of Arms.] when the Baronetcy became extinct.
The daughters were:
1. ANNE, born at Jersey, 7th June 1646; died at Tankersley Park, in Yorkshire, 20th July 1654, and was buried in the Parish Church of Tankersley.
2. ELIZABETH, born at Madrid, 13th July 1649; died a few days afterwards, and was buried in the Chapel of the French Hospital at Madrid.
3. ELIZABETH, born 24th June 1650; died at Foot's Cray, in Kent, in July 1656, and was there buried.
4. KATHERINE, born 30th July 1652, and was living, and unmarried, in May 1705.
5. MARGARET, born at Tankersley Park, in Yorkshire, 8th October 1653, married, before 1676, Vincent Grantham, of Goltho, in Lincolnshire, Esq. It is remarkable that she is not mentioned in her mother's will. She was living, and the wife or widow of Mr. Grantham, in May 1705.
6. ANN, born at Frog Pool, in Kent, 22nd February 1654-5, unmarried October 1679; but afterwards married —— Ryder, by whom she had a daughter, Ann Lawrence, who, with her mother, were living in May 1705.
7. MARY, born in London, 12th July 1656; died in August 1660, and was buried in All Saints' Church, Hertford.
8. ELIZABETH, born 22nd February 1662, to whom her mother bequeathed 600 pounds in her will in 1679, after which year nothing more of her has been found.
Although some trouble has been taken to trace the descendants of Sir Richard and Lady Fanshawe, all which has been discovered is, that their daughters became their co-heirs about 1695; that Sir Edmund Turnor, the husband of Lady Fanshawe's sister, in his will, dated 15th May 1705, and proved in 1708, mentions his nieces Fanshawe, Grantham, and niece Ann Fanshawe, alias Ryder, and Anne Lawrence, daughter of his niece Ryder; and that the MS. from which this volume is printed is said to have been transcribed in 1766 by Lady Fanshawe's "great granddaughter, Charlotte Colman."
MEMOIRS OF LADY FANSHAWE
I have thought it good to discourse to you, my most dear and only son, the most remarkable actions and accidents of your family, as well as those more eminent ones of your father; and my life and necessity, not delight or revenge, hath made me insert some passages which will reflect on their owners, as the praises of others will be but just, which is my intent in this narrative. I would not have you be a stranger to it; because, by the example, you may imitate what is applicable to your condition in the world, and endeavour to avoid those misfortunes we have passed through, if God pleases.
Endeavour to be innocent as a dove, but as wise as a serpent; and let this lesson direct you most in the greatest extremes of fortune. Hate idleness, and curb all passions; be true in all words and actions; unnecessarily deliver not your opinion; but when you do, let it be just, well-considered, and plain. Be charitable in all thought, word and deed, and ever ready to forgive injuries done to yourself, and be more pleased to do good than to receive good.
Be civil and obliging to all, dutiful where God and nature command you; but friend to one, and that friendship keep sacred, as the greatest tie upon earth, and be sure to ground it upon virtue; for no other is either happy or lasting.
Endeavour always to be content in that estate of life which it hath pleased God to call you to, and think it a great fault not to employ your time, either for the good of your soul, or improvement of your understanding, health, or estate; and as these are the most pleasant pastimes, so it will make you a cheerful old age, which is as necessary for you to design, as to make provision to support the infirmities which decay of strength brings: and it was never seen that a vicious youth terminated in a contented, cheerful old age, but perished out of countenance. Ever keep the best qualified persons company, out of whom you will find advantage, and reserve some hours daily to examine yourself and fortune; for if you embark yourself in perpetual conversation or recreation, you will certainly shipwreck your mind and fortune. Remember the proverb—such as his company is, such is the man, and have glorious actions before your eyes, and think what shall be your portion in Heaven, as well as what you desire on earth.
Manage your fortune prudently, and forget not that you must give God an account hereafter, and upon all occasions.
Remember your father, whose true image, though I can never draw to the life, unless God will grant me that blessing in you; yet, because you were but ten months and ten days old when God took him out of this world, I will, for your advantage, show you him with all truth, and without partiality.
He was of the highest size of men, strong, and of the best proportion; his complexion sanguine, his skin exceedingly fair, his hair dark brown and very curling, but not very long; his eyes grey and penetrating, his nose high, his countenance gracious and wise, his motion good, his speech clear and distinct. He never used exercise but walking, and that generally with some book in his hand, which oftentimes was poetry, in which he spent his idle hours; sometimes he would ride out to take the air, but his most delight was, to go only with me in a coach some miles, and there discourse of those things which then most pleased him, of what nature soever.
He was very obliging to all, and forward to serve his master, his country, and friend; cheerful in his conversation; his discourse ever pleasant, mixed with the sayings of wise men, and their histories repeated as occasion offered, yet so reserved that he never showed the thought of his heart, in its greatest sense, but to myself only; and this I thank God with all my soul for, that he never discovered his trouble to me, but went from me with perfect cheerfulness and content; nor revealed he his joys and hopes but would say, that they were doubled by putting them in my breast. I never heard him hold a disputation in my life, but often he would speak against it, saying it was an uncharitable custom, which never turned to the advantage of either party. He would never be drawn to the fashion of any party, saying he found it sufficient honestly to perform that employment he was in: he loved and used cheerfulness in all his actions, and professed his religion in his life and conversation. He was a true Protestant of the Church of England, so born, so brought up, and so died; his conversation was so honest that I never heard him speak a word in my life that tended to God's dishonour, or encouragement of any kind of debauchery or sin. He was ever much esteemed by his two masters, Charles the First and Charles the Second, both for great parts and honesty, as for his conversation, in which they took great delight, he being so free from passion, that made him beloved of all that knew him, nor did I ever see him moved but with his master's concerns, in which he would hotly pursue his interest through the greatest difficulties.
He was the tenderest father imaginable, the carefullest and most generous master I ever knew; he loved hospitality, and would often say, it was wholly essential for the constitution of England: he loved and kept order with the greatest decency possible; and though he would say I managed his domestics wholly, yet I ever governed them and myself by his commands; in the managing of which, I thank God, I found his approbation and content.
Now you will expect that I should say something that may remain of us jointly, which I will do though it makes my eyes gush out with tears, and cuts me to the soul to remember, and in part express the joys I was blessed with in him. Glory be to God, we never had but one mind throughout our lives. Our souls were wrapped up in each other's; our aims and designs one, our loves one, and our resentments one. We so studied one the other, that we knew each other's mind by our looks. Whatever was real happiness, God gave it me in him; but to commend my better half, which I want sufficient expression for, methinks is to commend myself, and so may bear a censure; but, might it be permitted, I could dwell eternally on his praise most justly; but thus without offence I do, and so you may imitate him in his patience, his prudence, his chastity, his charity, his generosity, his perfect resignation to God's will, and praise God for him as long as you live here, and with him hereafter in the Kingdom of Heaven. Amen.
Your father was born in Ware Park, in the month of June, in the year of our Lord 1608, and was the tenth child of Sir Henry Fanshawe, whose father bought Ten, in Essex, and Ware Park, in Hertfordshire. This, your great-grandfather, came out of Derbyshire from a small estate, Fanshawe-Gate, being the principal part that then this family had, which exceeded not above two hundred pounds a year, and about so much more they had in the town and parish of Dronfield, within two miles of Fanshawe-Gate, where the family had been some hundreds of years, as appears by the church of Dronfield, in the chancel of which church I have seen several grave-stones with the names of that family, many of them very ancient; and the chancel, which is very old, was and is kept wholly for a burying-place for that family.
There is in the town a free school, with a very good house and noble endowment, founded by your great-grandfather, who was sent for to London in Henry the Eighth's time, by an uncle of his, and of his own name, to be brought up a clerk under his uncle Thomas Fanshawe, who procured your great-grandfather's life to be put with his in the patent of Remembrancers of his Majesty's Exchequer, which place he enjoyed after the death of his uncle, he having left no male issue, only two daughters, who had both great fortunes in land and money, and married into the best families in Essex in that time. This was the rise of your great-grandfather, who, with his office and his Derbyshire estate, raised the family to what it hath been and now is. He had one only brother, Robert Fanshawe, who had a good estate in Derbyshire, and lived in Fanshawe-Gate, which he hired of his eldest brother, your great-grandfather.
In this house my mother was born, Margaret, the eldest daughter of Robert, your great-great-uncle: he married one of the daughters of Rowland Eyes, of Bradway, in the same county of Derby, by whom he had twelve sons and two daughters: that family remains in Dronfield to this day.
Your great-grandfather married Alice Bourchier, of the last Earl of Bath's family,[Footnote: This was not the fact. She was the daughter of Anthony Bourchier, Esq., of the County of Gloucester, a family in no way connected with the noble house of Bath.] by whom he had only one son that lived, Henry, which was your grandfather; afterwards, when he had been two years a widower, he married one of the daughters of Customer Smythe, who had six sons and six daughters: his sons were Sir John Smythe, Sir Thomas Smythe, Sir Richard Smythe, Sir Robert Smythe, Mr. William Smythe, and Mr. Edward Smythe, who died young: two were knighted by Queen Elizabeth, and two by King James; the eldest was grandfather of the now Lord Strangford; the second had been several times ambassador, and all married into good families, and left great estates to their posterity, which remain to this day. The daughters were Mrs. Fanshawe, your great-grandmother-in-law; the second married Sir John Scott, of Kent; the third married Sir John Davies, of the same county; the fourth married Sir Robert Poynz, of Leicestershire; the fifth married Thomas Butler, of Herald, Esq.; and the sixth married Sir Henry Fanshawe, your grandfather: these all left a numerous posterity but Davies, and this day they are matched into very considerable families. [Footnote: Lady Fanshawe is not quite correct in her account of the Smythe family, and the statements in Peerages are equally erroneous. Thomas Smythe, Esq. of Ostenhanger, in Kent, Farmer of the Customs to Philip and Mary, and to Queen Elizabeth, was the second son of John Smythe, Esq., (whose ancestors were seated at Corsham, in Wiltshire, as early as the 15th century,) by Joan, daughter of Robert Brounker, ancestor of the celebrated Viscount Brounker. Customer Smythe died in 1591, and had by Alice, daughter and heiress of Sir Andrew Judde, Lord Mayor of London, and one of the representatives of Archbishop Chicheley, seven sons and six daughters, 1. Andrew, who died young. 2. Sir John, of Ostenhanger, father of Sir Thomas Smythe, K.B., who married Lady Barbara Sydney, daughter of Robert first Earl of Leicester, K.G., was created Viscount Strangford, in Ireland, in 1628, and was the ancestor of Percy Clinton Sydney Smythe, sixth and present Viscount Strangford and first Baron Penshurst, G.C.B. 3. Henry Smythe, of Corsham. 4. Sir Thomas Smythe, of Bidborough, in the county of Kent, ambassador to Russia in 1604, whose male descendants became extinct on the death of Sir Stafford Sydney Smythe, Chief Baron of the Exchequer, in 1778. 5. Sir Richard Smythe, of Leeds Castle, in Kent, whose son, Sir John, dying issueless, in 1632, his sisters became his co-heiresses. 6. Robert Smythe, of Highgate, who left issue. 7. Symon Smythe, killed at the siege of Cadiz in 1597. Of the daughters of Customer Smythe, Mary married Robert Davye, of London, Esq.; Ursula married, first, Simon Harding, of London, Esq., and secondly William Butler, of Bidenham, in Bedfordshire, Esq.; Johanna was the wife of Thomas Fanshawe, of Ware Park, Herts, Esq.; Katherine was first the wife of Sir Rowland Hayward, Lord Mayor of London, and secondly of Sir John Scott, of Scott's Hall, in Kent; Alice married Edward Harris, of Woodham, in Essex, Esq.; and Elizabeth, the sixth and youngest daughter, was the wife of Sir Henry Fanshawe, Remembrancer of the Exchequer, father of Sir Richard Fanshawe, the ambassador. Sir ROBERT Poyntz, of Leicestershire, is a mistake of Lady Fanshawe's for Sir JAMES Poyntz, of North Oxenden, in Essex, who married Mary, the sister and co- heiress of Sir John Smythe, son of Sir Richard, of Bidborough, before mentioned, and GRANDDAUGHTER of the Customer.]
Your great-grandfather had by his second wife, Sir Thomas Fanshawe, Clerk of the Crown, and Surveyor-General of King James; to him he gave his manor of Jenkins, in Essex, valued at near two thousand a year.
His second son by the same wife, William, he procured to be Auditor of the Duchy, whose posterity hath in Essex, at Parslowes, about seven or eight hundred pounds a year. His eldest daughter married Sir Christopher Hatton, heir to the Lord Chancellor Hatton; his second married Sir Benjamin Ayloffe, of Brackstead, in Essex; the third married Mr. Bullock Harding, in Derbyshire; all men of very great estates. As your grandfather inherited Ware Park and his office, the flower of his father's estate, so did he of his wisdom and parts; and both were happy in the favour of the princes of that time, for Queen Elizabeth said that your grandfather was the best officer of accounts she had, and a person of great integrity; and your grandfather was the favourite of Prince Henry, and had the Prince lived to be King, had been Secretary of State, as he would often tell him. Mr. Camden speaks much in praise, as you may see, of Sir Henry Fanshawe's garden of Ware Park, none excelling it in flowers, physic herbs, and fruit, in which things he did greatly delight; also he was a great lover of music, and kept many gentlemen that were perfectly well qualified both in that and the Italian tongue, in which he spent some time. He likewise kept several horses of manege, and rid them himself, which he delighted in, and the Prince would say none did it better; he had great honour and generosity in his nature, and to show you a little part of which I will tell you this of him. He had a horse that the then Earl of Exeter was much pleased with, and Sir Henry esteemed, because he deserved it. My Lord, after some apology, desired Sir Henry to let him have his horse and he would give him what he would; he replied, "My Lord, I have no thoughts of selling him but to serve you; I bought him of such a person, and gave so much for him, and that shall be my price to you as I paid, being sixty pieces"; my Lord Exeter said, "That's too much, but I will give you, Sir Henry, fifty," to which he made no answer; next day my Lord sent a gentleman with sixty pieces, Sir Henry made answer, "That was the price he paid and once had offered him, my Lord, at, but not being accepted, his price now was eighty"; at the receiving of this answer my Lord Exeter stormed, and sent his servant back with seventy pieces. Sir Henry said, that "since my Lord would not like him at eighty pieces, he would not sell him under a hundred pieces, and if he returned with less he would not sell him at all"; upon which my Lord Exeter sent one hundred pieces, and had the horse. His retinue was great, and that made him stretch his estate, which was near if not full four thousand pounds a year; yet when he died, he left no debt upon his estate. He departed this life at the age of forty-eight years, and lies buried in the chancel, in a vault with his father in the parish church of Ware; he was as handsome and as fine a gentleman as England then had, a most excellent husband, father, friend, and servant to his Prince. He left in the care of my lady his widow, five sons and five daughters. His eldest son succeeded him in his lands and office, and after the restoration of the King, he was made Lord Viscount of Dromore in Ireland; he did engage his person and estate for the crown, and fought in the battle of Edgehill, and this ruined his estate, and was the cause of his sons selling Ware Park; afterwards he tried, by the King's assistance, to be reimbursed, but could not prevail. He was a very worthy, valiant, honest, good-natured gentleman, charitable, and generous, and had excellent natural parts, yet choleric and rash, which was only incommode to his own family: he was a very pretty man, for he was but low, of a sanguine complexion, much a gentleman in his mien and language; he was sixty-nine years of age when he died, and is buried with his ancestors in Ware Church.
He married first the daughter of Sir Giles Allington, by whom he hath a daughter called Anne, who remains a maid to this day; his second wife was Elizabeth, daughter to Sir William Cockain, Lord Mayor of London. She was a very good wife, but not else qualified extraordinary in any thing. She brought him many children, whereof now remain three sons and five daughters.
Thomas, Lord Viscount Fanshawe, his eldest son, died in May 1674; he was a handsome gentleman, of an excellent understanding, and great honour and honesty. He married the daughter and sole heir of Knitton Ferrers, of Bedford-bury, in the county of Hertford, Esq., by whom he had no child. After his father's death he married the daughter of Sir John Evelyn, widow to Sir John Wrey, of Lincolnshire; by this wife he had several children, of which only two survived him, Thomas, now Lord Viscount Fanshawe, and Katherine. His widow is lately married unto my Lord Castleton, of Senbeck, in Yorkshire. He lies buried with his ancestors in the Parish Church of Ware. Your uncle Henry, that was the second, was killed in fighting gallantly in the Low Countries with the English colours in his hand. He was very handsome and a very brave man, beloved and lamented by all who knew him. The third died a bachelor; I knew him not. The fourth is Sir Simon Fanshawe, a gallant gentleman, but more a libertine than any of his family; he married a very fine and good woman, and of a great estate; she was daughter and coheir to Sir William Walter, and widow to Knitton Ferrers, son to Sir John Ferrers, of Hertfordshire.
Your father, Sir Richard Fanshawe, Knight and Baronet, one of the Masters of the Requests, Secretary of the Latin Tongue, Burgess for the University of Cambridge, and one of his Majesty's most honourable Privy Council of England and Ireland, and his Majesty's Ambassador to Portugal and Spain, was the fifth and youngest son. He married me, the eldest daughter of Sir John Harrison, Knight, of Balls, in the county of Hertford; he was married at thirty-five years of age, and lived with me twenty-three years and twenty-nine days; he lies buried in a new vault I purchased of Humphry, Lord Bishop of London, in St. Mary's Chapel in the Church of Ware, near his ancestors, over which I built him a monument.
My dear husband had six sons and eight daughters, born and christened, and I miscarried of six more, three at several times, and once of three sons when I was about half gone my time. Harrison, my eldest son, and Henry, my second son; Richard, my third; Henry, my fourth; and Richard, my fifth, are all dead; my second lies buried in the Protestant Church-yard in Paris, by the father of the Earl of Bristol; my eldest daughter Anne lies buried in the Parish Church of Tankersley, in Yorkshire, where she died; Elizabeth lies in the Chapel of the French Hospital at Madrid, where she died of a fever at ten days old; my next daughter of her name lies buried in the Parish of Foot's Cray, in Kent, near Frog-Pool, my brother Warwick's house, where she died; and my daughter Mary lies in my father's vault in Hertford, with my first son Henry; my eldest lies buried in the Parish Church of St. John's College in Oxford, where he was born; my second Henry lies in Bengy Church, in Hertfordshire; and my second Richard in the Esperanza in Lisbon in Portugal, he being born ten weeks before my time when I was in that Court. I praise God I have living yourself and four sisters, Katherine unmarried, Margaret married to Vincent Grantham, Esq., of Goltho, in the county of Lincoln, Anne, and Elizabeth.
Now I have shown you the most part of your family by the male line, except Sir Thomas Fanshawe, of Jenkins, who has but one child, and that a daughter, and two brothers, both unmarried. Their father as well as themselves was a worthy honest gentleman and a great sufferer for the Crown, wholly engaging his estate for the maintenance thereof; and so is my cousin John Fanshawe, of Parslowes, in Essex, who hath but two sons, one unmarried by his first wife, who was the daughter of Sir William Kingsmill; and the other is a child whom he had by his last wife, the daughter of my cousin, Thomas Fanshawe, of Jenkins.