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long, though long enough to prevent him from proceeding on his mission. (L. & L. 1. 304, 5.) By the end of the month he was again in London, but probably not in good health, for in the following month his mother writes to him from Gor. hambury, “ Look very well to your health. Sup not nor sit not up late. Surely I think your drinking to bedwards hindreth your and your brother's digestion very much. I never know any but sickly that used it; besides ill for head and eyes. Obserye well yet in time. 20 Aug. Gorhā. In Christo,
A. Bacon." This drinking to bedwards” is explained by Aubrey, who says in his “ Letters and Lives of Eminent Men” 11, 225, “ His Lordship would often drink a good draught of strong beer (March beer) to bedwards, to lay his working fancy asleep: which otherwise would keep him from sleeping great part of the night.”
Still debt and disease beset him. Anthony's " correspondence during this autumn is full of urgent applications to varions friends for loans of money, and the following memorandum, shows that much of his own necessity arose from his anxiety to supply the necessities of his brother. Memorandum. That the fourth of October, '94, at my brother coming to me after a fit of the stone, and falling into talk of the money he ought me as principal debt, he acknowledged to be due to me £650; whereof £200 I borrowed of Mr. Mills," &c. (L. & L. I. 322.) and disappointment must again be added. In 1593 he had been candidate for the office of Attorney-General, but having found that this was to be given to Coke, the Solicitor-General he applied for the latter office, and was kept so long in suspense that he wrote to the Earl of Essex, “I must confess this very delay hath gone so near me, as it hath almost overthrown my health :" and in another letter, “I hope Her Majesty of her clemency, yea and justice, will .... not force me to pine here with melancholy.” To Burghley he calls himself “
a tired sea-sick suitor,” and to a friend he says “I have been like a piece of stuff bespoken in the shop; and if her Majesty will not take me, it may be the selling by parcels will be more gainful. For to be as I told you, like a child following a bird, which when he is nearest flieth away and lighteth a little before, and then the child after it again and so in infinitum, I am weary of it; and also of wearying my good friends :" but on the 25th of May 1595, he writes “It may be when her Majesty hath tried others, she will think of him that she hath cast aside. For I will take it (upon that which her Majesty hath often said) that she doth reserve me and not reject me;" and his mother, writing to Anthony on the 3rd of June, says "If her Majesty have resolved upon the negative for your brother, as I hear, truly, save for the brust a little, I am glad of it. God, in His time, hath better in store I trust. For, considering his kind of health, and what cumber pertains to that office, it is best for bim I hope.” (P. H. 325.
On the 11th of the same month he writes to the Lord Keeper Puckering, “Not able to attend your Lordship myself before your going to the Court, by reason of an ague, which offered me a fit on Wednesday morning, but since by absti. nence I thank God I have starved, yet so as now he hath turned his back I am chasing him away with a little physic ... but on the 30th Lady Bacon, writing to Anthony, says “Crosby told me he looked very ill, he thought.
He taketh still inward grief, I fear” ... and on the 5th of August she says, “I am sorry your brother with inward secret grief hindereth his health. Everybody saith he looketh thin and pale I had rather ye both, with God his blessed favour, had very good health and well out of debt than
On the 5th of November Serjeant Fleming was appointed Solicitor-General, and Bacon being thus relieved from suspense, his spirits, and therefore probably his health, at once revived ; as we may infer from a letter “ To my Lord of Essex" which begins, “I pray God her Majesty's weighing be not like the weight of a balance; gravia deorsum, levia sursum. But I as far from being altered in devotion towards her, as I am from distrust that she will be altered in opinion towards me, when she knoweth me better.” Afterwards, speaking of the late appointment, he says, “I esteem it like the pulling out of an aching tooth, which I remember, when I was a child and had little philosophy, I was glad of when it was done."
In the winter of 1595 Mr. Spedding "presumes that he betook himself to his studies, and about a year after he printed the little volume containing the Essays in their first shape, the Colours of Good and Evil, and the Meditationes Sacree." In the two latter there is little reference to medicine, but one of the ten essays then published is entitled 'Of Regiment of Health.' The number of Essays, in the last edition published in his lifetime, was increased to fifty eight, and that on Health was corrected and much enlarged.
In 1596 he was again a candidate for office, but was again unsuccessful. “I see well,” he said, “the Bar will be my Bier, and I must and will use it rather than my poor estate or reputation shall decay. But I stand indifferent whether God call me, or her Majesty."
In the summer or autumn of 1597—the letter has no datehe says “For my practice, it presupposeth my health, which if I should judge of as a man that judgeth of a fair morrow by a fair evening, I might have reason to value well.” Accordingly " in almost every measure of general policy discussed” in the Parliament of that year, he “appears to have been more or less engaged, for there is scarcely a committee list in which his name does not appear.” (L. & L. II. 79).
I find no account of his health in 1598, but his pecuniary difficulties were still increasing, and he was arrested for a debt of £300 as he came from the Tower on her Majesty's special service, “ by one Sympson, a goldsmith, a man" he says “noted much, as I have heard, for extremities and stoutness upon his purse .... a man I never provoked with a cross word, no nor with many delays." The case in which he had been engaged was an inquiry into an attempt to destroy the Queen by “the impoisonment of the pommel of her saddle at such times as she should ride abroad; her Majesty being like to rest her hand thereupon for a good time together, and not unlike for her hand to come often about her face, mouth and nostrils," but though this was done by means of a bladder containing the poison, and pricked fall of holes, and “in July in the heat of the year, when the pores and veins were openest to receive any malign vapour or tincture, if her Majesty by any acci. dent had laid her hand upon the place," no harm came of it. Mr. Spedding has "no doubt, judging by the style," that the letter from which these notes are taken was written by Bacon; hence they have an interest they would not otherwise possess.
In 1599 he speaks of being in his “last years, for so I account them reckoning by health not by age;" and poverty still besets him; for in March 1600 he earnestly solicits from the Queen the gift of three parcels of ordinary land "arising to the total of eighty and odd pounds," for the removal of " three thorns the compunction whereof instanted me to make this motion at this time ... First my love to my mother, whose health being worn, I do infinitely desire she mought carry this comfort to the grave, not to leave my estate troubled and engaged. Secondly, these perpetuities being now overthrown, I have just fear my brother will endeavour to put away Gorhambury, which if your Majesty enable me by this gift I know I shall be able to get into mine own hands, where I do figure to myself that one day I may have the honour and comfort to bid your Majesty welcome, and to trim and dress the grounds for your Majesty's solace. Thirdly, your Majesty may by this redemption (for so I may truly call it) free me from the contempt of the contemptible, that measure a man by his estate, which I daily find a weakening of me both in courage and means to do your Majesty service ... From my Tub not yet hallowed by your sacred Majesty."
Whether this application succeeded or not is unknown; but it is too well known that he never received from the Queen any of the high and lucrative offices to which he aspired, though she was charmed with his conversation, and frequently employed him; and though he took every method of gaining her favour, down to sending her “one petticote of white satten, embrothered all over” as a new year's gift. She said, as reported to him by Essex, that "she did acknowledge you had a great wit, and an excellent gift of speech, and much other good learning. Bnt in law she rather thought you could make show to the uttermost of your knowledge, than that you were deep.” Accordingly he said long after (May 31, 1612) “My good old mistress was wont to call me her watch candle, because it pleased her to say I did continually burn, and yet she suffered me to waste almost to nothing." (W. M. XII. 282). Nevertheless he seems to have always spoken of her in the loftiest terms of praise, and these doubtless expressed the genuine feelings of his heart, for he continued them after her death in a splendid eulogium, which was more likely to retard than promote his influence with her successor.