Letter from William Yelverton to Nathaniel Bacon, 1604 April 9, L.d.636

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This article features a transcription of a Folger Shakespeare Library manuscript, Letter from William Yelverton to Nathaniel Bacon, L.d.636, (April 9, 1604), featured in the Age of Lawyers Exhibition, September 13, 2015-January 3, 2016.

More manuscripts from this collection can be found in Guide to the Bacon-Townshend collection, 1550-1640

In this letter, William Yelverton suggests that Nathaniel Bacon might grant the stewardship of his manor jointly to the current steward, Mr. Spratt—now too ill to do the job—and an attorney, Edward Sybsey. This would let Spratt keep his position, while Sybsey "would gladly better his estate and advance his credit by leaving the place of an attorney to become a steward." Other practitioners combined both roles, serving as attorneys in London and stewards at the same time.


Below is a semi-diplomatic transcription of Folger manuscript L.d.636. The transcription below was created by the Early Modern Manuscripts Online (EMMO) project. To access an image of the original leaf, click on each transcription's heading.


Sir, Mr edward Sybsey, my brother in lawe; would so farr

be beholding vnto yow, as to have the deputation of

a stuardshipp (which is now soly exercised by Mr Spratt)

to be granted by yow to Mr Spratt and himselfe. / the

former of these is vnable in regard of sicknes; and

vnwilling besides in respect of other incumbrances, to

medle any more ther with. The other (Mr Sybsey I meane)

would gladly better his estate; and advance his creditt

by leaving the place of an Attorney, to become a Steward

This change maye happily be made, if yow be pleased

to grace him so much. / Besides the certenty of having

your accustomed Rent, I dare promis all thankefulnes

of his part,; and for myneself I will acknowledge

a beholdingnes for your vndeserved love; and tie mye

selfe to the requitall of so exceeding a ffavour; if the

small meanes I have maye any tyme herafter effect it

Thus hoping of your kyndest furtherance herin; with

my harty commendations. I committ yow to gods most

holy protection. / Sedgeford this 9th of Aprill 1604.

your loving ffrende William yeluerton


To the worshipfull, his

verie loving ffrend, Nathaniell

Bacon esquire at London

give thiese /