« PreviousContinue »
The following instrument" is copied from the
criginal in the College of Heralds: It is marked
G. 13. p. 349. To all and finguler noble and gentlemen of all estats and degrees, bearing arms, to whom these presents shall come, William Dethick, Garter, Principall King of Arms of England, and William Camden, alias Clarencieulx, King of Arms for the fouth, east, and west parts of this realme, sendethe greeting. Know
that in all nations and kingdoms the record and remembraunce of the valeant facts and vertuous dispositions of worthie men have been made knowne and divulged by certeyne fhields of arms and tokens of chevalrie; the grant and testimonie whereof apperteyneth unto us, by vertu of our offices from the Quenes most Exc. Majestie, and her Highenes inoit noble and victorious progenitors: whereof being solicited, and by credible report informed, that John Shakspeare, now of Stratford-upon-Avon, in the counte of Warwick, gent. whose parent, great grandfather,
6 In the Herald's Office are the first draughts of John Shakspeare's grant or confirmation of arms, by William Dethick, Garter, Principal King at Arms, 1596. See Vincent's Press, Vol. 157, No. 23, and 24. STEEVENS.
In a Manuscript in the College of Heralds, marked W. . p. 276, is the following note: ** As for the speare in bend, it is a patible difference, and the perfon to whom it was granted hath borne magistracy, and was justice of peace at Stratford-upon-Avon. He married the daughter and heire of Arderne, and was able to maintain that eflate." MALONE.
and late antecessor, for his faithefull and approved service to the late most prudent prince, king Henry VII. of famous memorie, was advaunced and rewarded with lands and tenements, geven to him in those parts of Warwickshire, where they have continewed by some defcents in good reputacion and credit; and for that the said John Shakspeare having maryed the daughter and one of the heyrs of Robert Arden of Wellingcote, in the said countie, and also produced this his auncient cote of arms, heretofore assigned to him whileft he was her Majesties officer and baylefe of that towne ;' In confideration of the premisses, and for the encouragement of his pofteritie, unto whom fuche blazon of arms and achevements of inheritance from theyre said mother, by the auncyent custome and lawes of arms, maye lawfully defcend; We the said Garter and Clarencieulx have assigned, graunted, and by these presents exemplefied unto the said John Shakspeare, and to his posteritie, that shield and cote of arms. viz. In a field of gould upon a bend Jables a speare of the first, the point upward, hedded argent; and for his crest or cognisance, A falcon with his wings displayed, standing on a wrethe of his coullers, supporting a speare armed hedded, or steeled fylver, fyxed uppon a helmet with mantell and tasfells, as more playnely maye appeare depected on this margent; and we have likewise uppon on other escutcheon impaled the same with the auncyent
7 his auncient cote of arms, heretofore aligned to him whileft he was her Majesties oficer and bazlefe of that towne ;] This grant of arms was made by Cook, Clarencieux, 1569, but is not now extant in the Herald's-Office, MALONE.
arms of the said Arden of Wellingcote; fignifieng therby, that it maye and shalbe lawfull for the said John Shakspeare, gent. to beare and use the fame shield of arms, single or impaled, as aforesaid, during his naturall lyffe ; and that it shalbe lawfull for his children, yssue, and pofteryte, (lawfully begotten,) to beare, use, and quarter, and show forth the same, with theyre dewe differences, in all lawfull warlyke facts and civile use or exercises, according to the laws of arms, and custome that to gentlemen belongethe, without let or interraption of any person or persons, for use or bearing the same. In wyttnesse and testemonye whereof we have subscrebed our names, and fastened the seals of our offices, geven at the Office of Arms, London, the
in the xlii yere of the reigne of our most gratious Soveraigne lady Elizabeth, by the grace of God, quene of Ingland, France, and Ireland, defender of the faith, &c. 1599.
-and we have likewise -- impaled the fame with the auncyent arms of the said Arden --] It is said by Mr. Jacob, the modern editor of Arden of Feversham (firit published in 1592 and republished in 1077) that Shakspeare descended by the fe-male line from the gentleman whose unfortunate end is the subject of this tragedy. But the affertion appears to want fupport, the true name of the person who was murdered at Feversham being Ardern and not Arden. Ardern might be called Arden in the play for the sake of better found, or might be corrupted in the chronicle of Holinshed: yet it is unlikely that the true fpelling should be overlocked among the Heralds, whose interest it is to recommend by oftentatious aca curacy the trifles in which they deal. STEEVENS.
Ardern was the original name, but in Shakspeare's time it had been foftened to Arden. See p. 3. n. 2. MALONE.
THE following is a transcript of a deed executed by our author three years before his death. The original deed, which was found in the year 1968, among the title-deeds of the Rev. Mr. Fetherstonihaugh, of Oxted, in the cộunty of Surry, is now in the possession of Mrs. Garrick, by whom it was obligingly transmitted to me through the hands of the Hon. Mr. Horace Walpole. Much has lately been said in various publications relative to the proper mode of spelling Shakspeare's name. It is hoped we shall hear no more idle babble upon this subject. He spelt his name himself as I have just now written it, without the middle e. Let this therefore for ever decide the question.
It should be remembered that to all ancient deeds were appended labels of parchment, which were inserted at the bottom of the deed; on the upper part of which labels thus rising above the rest of the parchment, the executing parties wrote their names. Shakspeare, not finding room for the whole of his name on the label, attempted to write the remaining letters at the top, but having allowed himself only room enough to write the letter a, he gave the matter up. His hand-writing, is much neater than many others, which I have seen, of that age. VOL. I.
He neglected, however, to scrape the parchment, in sequence of which the letters appear imperfe&ly formed.
He purchased the estate here mortgaged, from Henry Walker, for 140l. as appears from the enrolment of the deed of bargain and sale now in the Rolls Chapel, dated the preceding day, March 10, 1612-13. The deed here printed shews that he paid down eighty pounds of the purchase-money, and mortgaged the premises for the remainder. This deed and the purchase deed were probably both executed on the same day, (March 10,) like our modern conveyance of Lease and Release. MALONE. THIS
HIS INDENTURE made the eleventh day of March, in the yeares of the reigne of our Sovereigne Lorde James, by the grace of God, king of England, Scotland, Fraunce, and Ireland, defender of the faith, &c. that is to say, of England, Fraunce and Ireland the tenth, and of Scotland the six-and-fortieth; Between William Shakespeare of Stratford-upon-Avon, in the Countie of Warwick, gentlemen, William Johnson, Citizen and Vintner of London, John Jackson, and John Hemyng of London, gentlemen, of thone partie, and Henry Walker, Citizen and Minstrell of London, of thother partie; Witnesseth, that the faid William Shakespeare, William Johnson, John Jackfon, and John Hemyng, have demised, graunted, and to ferme letten, and by theis presents do demise, graunt, and to ferme lett unto the said Henry Walker, all that dwelling house or tenement, with thappurtenaunts, situate and being within the precinét, circuit, and compasse of the late Black ffryers,