Margaret Paston to John Paston, 28th February 1449

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Ryt wurchypful hosbond, I recommawnd me to ȝou, desyryng hertyly to heryn of ȝowr wele-fare, be-seching ȝou þat ȝe be not displesyd þow I be com fro þat place þat ȝe left me in; for be my trawth þer were brawth me seche tydyngys be dyuerys þersonys qhiche ben ȝowre wele-willerys and myn þat I durst no lengere abyd there, of qhyche þersonys I xall late ȝou have wetyng qhan ȝe corn horn. It was done me to wete þat dyuerys of þe Lord Moleynys men saydyn jf þei myt gete me þey xuld stele me and keþe me wyth-jnne þe kastell, and þan þey seyd þei wold þat ȝe xuld feche me owth. An þei seydyn it xuld ben but a lytyll hert-brennymg to ȝou. And after þat I herd þese tydyngys I kowd no rest have in myn hert tyl I was here, nere I durst nowt owt of þe place þat I was jn tyll þat I was redy to ryden; nere þer was non in þe place wist þat I xul corn þens save þe godewyf not an owre be-fore þat I kam þens. And I told here þat I xuld corn hedder to don maken seche gere as I wold haue made for me and for þe childer, and seyd I sopposyd þat I xuld be here a fowrtennythe or iij wekys. I pray ȝou þat þe caws of my komyng away may ben kownsell tyl I sþeke wyth ȝou, for þei þat lete me haue warnyng þer-of wold not for no good þat it were diskuryd.

I spac wyth ȝowr modyr as I kam hidderwardys, and sche prafyrd me, if ȝe wold, þat I xuld abydyn in pis town. Sche wold wyth rytȝ a good will þat we xul abyde in here place, and delyueryn me seche gere as sche myt for-bere, to keþen wyth hwsold tyl ȝe mytȝ ben purvayd of a place and stuff of ȝowr owyn to keþe wyth howsold. I pray ȝou send me word be þe brynger of pis how ȝe wil þat I be demenyd. I wol hen rytȝ sory to dwel so nere Gressam as I dede tyl þe mater were fullys determynyd be-twix þe Lord Moleynis and ȝou

Barow told me that þer ware no better evydens in Inglond þan þe Lord Moleynys hathe of þe maner of Gressam. I told hym I sopposyd þat þei were seche evydens as Willyam Hasard seyd þat ȝowr were: he seyd þe sellys of hem were not ȝett kold. I seyd I sopposyd his lordys evydens were seche. I seyd I wost wele, as for ȝowr evydens, þer mytȝ no man haue non better þan ȝe have, and I seyd þe selys of hem were to hundred ȝere elder þan he is. þe seyd Barow sayd to me if he com to London qhil ȝe were there he wold drynk wyth ȝou, for any angyr þat was be-twyx ȝow. He seyd he dede but as a servawnt, and as he was commawndyd to don. Purry xall tell ȝou qhat langage was be-twyx Barow and me qhan I kam fro Walsyngham. I pray ȝou hertyly, at þe reverens of God, be ware of þe Lord Moleynys and his men, þow þei sþeke neuer so fayr to ȝou trost hem not, ne ete not nere drynk wyth hem, for þei ben so fals it is not for to trost in hem. And also I pray ȝou be ware qhat ȝe eten ar drynk wyth any othere felaschep, for þe þepyll is ful on-trosty.

I pray ȝou hertylye þat ȝe wil vowche-save to send me word how ȝe don and how ȝe sþeden in ȝowr materis be þe brynger of this. I merveyl meche þat ȝe send me nomore tydyngys pan ȝe haue sent.

Rogere Foke of Sparham sent to me and seythe þat he dare nott gon owt of his hows for be kawse of þe sewte þat Heydon and Wymdam haue aȝens hem, for he is thrett þat if he may be gette he xal be ladde to preson. Heydon sent Spendlove and oþer to wayte qhere he were, and to arest hym to þe kastell, and þe forseyd Roger is so aferd þat his drede makyth hym so seke þat but if he haue sokowr sone it is lyke to ben his dethe. Qhere-for I pray ȝou, and he bothyn, þat ȝe wil purvay a remedy for hym, þat he may gon at large, for it hurtit bothen ȝowr katel and hym. Ȝowr closys and ȝowr pastowr lythe all opyn be-kawse he may not gon abrodde to don hem amendyn, and ȝowr schep ar not lokyd at as þey xuld hen for þer is no schepeherd but Hodgis sonys, for oþer schepherd dare non abyd þer ner corn up-on þe comown be-kause þat Wichyngham men thretyn hem to bete if þei comen on here komon. And but if ȝowr bestys mown comown þer jt xall hen grette hurt to hem but if þe haue more pasture pan þei haue be-syd þatt.

Watkyn Schipdam recommawndyth hym to ȝou, and prayt ȝou þat ȝe woll sþeke to Sere Jon Fastolf for þe harneys þat ȝe hadden of hym, and tellyn hym how it is þat som þer-of is gon, and sþeke to hym þat þei þat am bownd þer-for nere þei þat delyueryd it hen no hurt.

I haue ȝove Purry a gown; I pray ȝou take heed qhat it is and send me word if ȝe wil þat I purway all ȝowr leuerés of þe same. þe pris of a ȝerd þer-of is xiij d. ob., and so me semyt it is wele worth.

The parson of Sparrammys dowter and oþer talkedyn largely, and seydyn þat ȝe haue hadde on schote and but if ȝe hen ware ȝe xall haue more or Estern - ȝe xall for-bere Sporyl and Sweynysthorp also but if ȝe bere ȝou wele, er ȝe haue do wyth þe mater of Gressam. It is told me as for Gressam þe Lord Moleynys xuld not cleym it now noþer be tayl nere be evydens, but be infefment of on of his anseteris qhiche dyid sesynnyd, and in þe same wise it is seyd þat Sweynysthorp xul be cleymyd. In qhat wyse Sporyl xuld hen cleymyd I wote not; but if þer be any seche thing to-ward I send ȝou word here-of þat ȝe may taken hede the .... Thomas Skipping seyd qhan he kam fro London to a man þat he wend xuld not a diskuryd it þat p....yke to for-gon þe maner of Sporyll wyth-in rytȝ schort tym. As for þe pleyntys in þehundred Purry xall tell ȝou qhat is don and of aþer thingys more.

The Holy Trynyté haue ȝou in his keping. Wretyn at Norwyche on þe Fryday nexst after Puver Weddenysday.

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