If the register of the privy council during its sittings in the Tower, under the authority of Queen Jane, had been preserved, it would have furnished the best index to the state proceedings of the time; but, as no traces of its existence are apparent in our historical collections, it is probable that the whole was cancelled, and the register of Queen Mary's council, [1] from its first sittings in Norfolk, adopted as the record of the legitimate rulers of the state.

Sir Harris Nicolas, in his Chronology of History, when treating of the reign of Jane, arrives at the conclusion that it was "most probably considered to have commenced on the 6th of Jul". He states that "the earliest public documents of the reign of Jane which have been discovered are dated on the 9th (alluding to the letter of the Council to the lady Mary), and the latest on the 18th." It will be perceived that these dates may be extended by one day at either end. By an act of parliament passed shortly after (1 Mar. cap. iv.) private instruments and writings bearing date in the reign of Queen Jane, "since the 6th of Jul last past, and before the 1st of Aug then next following", were made good and effectual in law; but only one such instrument is now known to exist: it is a deed relating to a messuage in the parish of St. Dunstan's in Kent, and is dated on the 15th of Jul. [2]



Jul 8. Letter of the council to Sir Phillip Hoby, Ambassador with the Emperor, announcing King Edward's death.

Transcripts in MS Harl. 523, f. 101. and in MS. Cotton. Galba, B. XII. f. 249 b.; printed in Strype's Memorials, 1721, ii. 430; in Howard's "Lady Jane Grey and her Times," 1822, 8vo. p. 233; and in Ellis's Orig. Letters, Third Series, iii. 309. The original draft is printed from the Cecill papers in Lodge's Illustrations of British History, 4to. vol. i. p. 182.

-------- A similar letter to the French King.

Draft copy printed in Lodge's Illustrations, i. 183.


Jul 9. Letter from the lady Mary, under her signet, to the lords of the council, asserting her title, dated "at our manor of Kenynghall the ninth of Jul."

Printed in Foxe's Actes and Monuments, in Holinshed's Chronicle, and in Heylyn's History of the Reformation.


Jul 10. The proclamation of Queen Jane's accession. Printed by Richard Grafton for publication, as a placard, in black letter.

An original printed copy of this proclamation is in the collection at the Society of Antiquaries It hag been reprinted in Burnet's History of the Reformation, vol ii Records to Book II. No. I.; in the Biographia Britannica, tit. Lady Jane Grey; in the Harleian Miscellany, (Park's edition,) vol. i. p. 405; in Cobbett's State Trials, i. 739; in Howard's Lady Jane Grey; and in Nicolas's Memoir and Literary Remains of Lady Jane Grey. A French translation is printed in the Ambassades of Noailles. [3]


Jul 11. Letter of the lords to the lady Mary, rejecting her claim to the crown, and asserting the actual investiture of "our sovereign lady queen Jane": signed by twenty-one councillors. It is dated "From the Tower of London, this ninth of Jul", but as that was the date of a lady Mary's letter written at Kenninghall in Norfolk, to which this was the reply, the latter must have been written two or three days later.

Printed in Foxe's Actes and Monuments, in Heylyn's History of the Reformation, and in Nicolas's Memoir of Lady Jane Grey, p. xlviii.

-------- A letter from the council to the commissioners at Brussels; desiring them to announce King Edward's death to the Emperor: sent by Mr. Richard Shelley.

Transcripts in MS. Harl. 523, and in MS. Cotton, Galba B. XII. very incorrectly printed in Howard's "Lady Jane Grey and her Times," p. 247, but correctly in Ellis's Orig. Letters, Third Series, iii. 310.


Jul 12. Letter under the Queen's signet to the Ambassadors at Brussels, directing Sir Phillip Hoby to remain resident with the Emperor, and the other commissioners to continue there for negociating a treaty of peace: sent by the same bearer.

Transcripts in MS,. Harl. 523, f. 43; and in MS Cotton. Galba, B. XII.; printed in Strype's Ecclesiastical Memorials, vol. iii. p. 5, Howard's Lady Jane Grey and her Times, p. 249 (the fac-simile of the Queen's sign-manual there prefixed does not properly belong to this manuscript).

-------- A letter from the council to the sheriff of Nottinghamshire and Derbyshire, and the justices of the peace of the same, desiring them to send forces to aid the Duke of Northumberland.

Printed in the Retrospective Review, Second Series, i. 504.


Jul 15. Letter from Sir Phillip Hoby and Sir Richard Morysine, commissioners at Brussels, to the council: in which lord Guildford Dudley is termed "King." [4]

Transcripts in MS. Harl. 523, f.11 b; and in MS. Cotton. Galba, B. XII. Printed in Howard's Lady Jane Grey and her Times, p. 258, and in Nicolas's Memoir, p. lxiii.

-------- A letter from the council to the sheriff and magistrates of Wiltshire, communicating the state of public affairs, that the lady Jane was in real and actual possession of the crown, and that the Duke of Northumberland, &c. were going forth to suppress rebellion.

Original in the archives of the corporation of Tailors of Salisbury; printed in Hatcher's History of that city (Hoare's Modern Wiltshire,) fol. 1843, p. 266.


Jul 16. A second letter, under the Queen's sign-manual, to the county of Surrey: addressed to the sheriff, justices, and gentlemen of the county, admonishing them not to credit the letters of the lady Mary.

Original at Loseley House, Surrey; printed in Ellis's Original Letters, First Series, Nicolas's Lady Jane Grey, and Kempe's Loseley Manuscripts. (The word left blank in the two former copies is "dominion.")

-------- A letter, under the Queen's sign-manual, to Sir John St. Lowe and Sir Anthony Kingston, knts. commissioning them to muster forces, and to repair to Buckinghamshire to repress rebellion.

Original in Petyt's MSS. at the Inner Temple: printed in Strype's Memorials, vol. iii. Appendix No. II.


Jul 17. Letter of Sir Phillip Hoby and Sir Richard Morysine, Ambassadors at Brussels, to the council, describing their audience the day before with the Emperor.

Transcripts in MS. Harl. 523, f. 13; and in MS. Cotton. Galba, B. XII; printed in Howard's Life, p. 230; Nicolas's Memoir, p. lx.


Jul 18. A letter under sign-manual addressed to Sir John Brydges and Sir Nicholas Poyntz, in the same terms as that to Sir John St. Lowe and Sir Anthony Kingston above mentioned.

Original in MS. Harl. 416, f. 30: printed in Strype's Life of Cranmer, Appendix, No. LXX.; in Nichols's History of Leicestershire, iii. 670; and in the memoirs of lady Jane Grey by Howard and Nicolas. The Queen's sign manual prefixed to this document has been engraved in Hist. of Leic. pl. XCI. in Nichols's Autographs, 1829, pl. 19, and underneath the portrait prefixed to Sir Harris Nicolas's Memoir.


Jul 19. Letter of the council to lord Rich the lord lieutenant of Essex, requiring him to remain steadfast to Queen Jane, notwithstanding the Earl of Oxford had departed to the lady Mary.

Original, with the signatures of the council, in MS. Lansdowne, 3, No. 25, endorsed by lord Burghley "fro[m] [th]ye Counsell named Q. Janes cou[n]sell. wrytte[n] by Sir Jho Cheke." Printed in Strype's Cranmer, Appendix, No. LXIX.


Jul 20. Charge of the council to Richard Rose pursuivant, sent to Cambridge to command the Duke of Northumberland to disarm.

MS. Harl. 6069, f. 43, and f. 102. Printed in Stowe's Chronicle, and in Heylyn's History of the Reformation.

Both the two last contradictory documents were signed by the Archbishop Cranmer, the Chancellor, the Lord treasurer, the Duke of Suffolk, the earls of Bedford, Shrewsbury, and Pembroke, the lord chamberlain Darcy, Sir Richard Cotton, Sir William Petre, Sir John Cheke, Sir John Baker, and Sir Robert Bowes. The Earl of Arundel and lord Paget only signed the first: they started to join Queen Mary immediately after her proclamation. Sir Thomas Cheney also only signed the first. Sir William Cecil and Sir John Mason signed the second, but not the first.

-------- Letter of the commissioners at Brussels to the council: reporting that the Emperor had refused to receive Sir Richard Shelley.

Transcript in MS. Harl. 523, f.1; printed (in abstract) in Nicolas's Memoir of Lady Jane Grey, p. lxvi. This letter does not occur, like the others of the series, in the MS. Cotton. Galba, B. XII and has an important piece torn out in the Harleian MS.


1. This will be found described in a subsequent Catalogue of State Papers of the reign of Queen Mary.

2. "Dat. decimo quinto die Julij anno regni d'ae Janae Dei gratia Angliae, Franciae et Hiberniae Reginae, Fidei Defensoris atque in terra ecclesiae Anglicanae supremi capitis, primo." See the Retrospective Review, Second Series, i. 505.

3. M. de Noailles au Roy, 13 Juillet 1553: "Le lendemain, qui fut un mardy unzieme, les proclamations de la dite royne, qui est vertueuse, sage, et belle, et qui promet beaucoup, furent attachez par les carrefours et lieux publics de cette ville, lesquels j'ay faict traduire et imprimer," &c. Ambassades, ii. 57.

4. The Commissioners relate that the day before they had been visited by don Diego( ?) who after congratulating them on the accession of "so noble and so toward a prince" made these further remarks: "Whether the two daughters be bastard or no, or why it is done, we that be strangers have nothing to do with the matter; you are bound to obey and serve her majesty, and therefore it is reason we take him for your King, whom the consent of the nobles of your country have declared for your King. I (saith he), for my part, of all others were bound to be glad that his majesty is set in this office; I was his godfather, and would as willingly spend my blood in his service as any subject that he hath, as long as I shall see the Emperor my master so willing to embrace his majesty's amity."

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