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Sir James Croft, 1518-1590 Wright, Patrick Dermot 1969

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SIR  JAMES  CROFT,  1518-1590  by PATRICK  DERMOT WRIGHT  B. A., U n i v e r s i t y o f B r i t i s h Columbia, 1963  THESIS  SUBMITTED  IN PARTIAL  THE  REQUIREMENTS  FULFILMENT  FOR THE DEGREE  MASTER  OF  OF ARTS  i n the Department of History  We accept t h i s thesis as conforming to the required standard  THE  UNIVERSITY  OF BRITISH COLUMBIA  A p r i l 16, 1969  In p r e s e n t i n g an  this  thesis  advanced degree at  the  Library  I further for  shall  the  his  of  this  agree that  written  of  be  April  g r a n t e d by  gain  History  16,  1969.  for  for extensive the  It i s understood  for financial  The U n i v e r s i t y o f B r i t i s h V a n c o u v e r 8, Canada  British  available  permission.  Department of  Date  University  permission  representatives. thesis  f u l f i l m e n t of  make i t f r e e l y  s c h o l a r l y p u r p o s e s may  by  in p a r t i a l  Columbia  shall  requirements  Columbia,  Head o f my  be  I agree  r e f e r e n c e and copying of  that  not  the  that  Study.  this  thesis  Department  copying or  for  or  publication  allowed without  my  ii  ABSTRACT  This t h e s i s i s b i o g r a p h i c a l i n form, and follows a c h r o n o l o g i c a l development.  James C r o f t ' s l i f e i l l u s t r a t e s many of the problems of an ambitious  of the period, and spans more than seventy years and four r e i g n s .  man  His e a r l y  career was as a s o l d i e r , and t h i s aspect, as w e l l as a survey of h i s family background, has been d e a l t w i t h i n Chapter One.  In 1551, Croft served i n I r e -  land, o r i g i n a l l y as leader of an expeditionary f o r c e , but l a t e r as Lord Deputy, the f i r s t post i n h i s career of major importance.  The accession of Mary to the  throne i n 1553 prompted Croft to take part i n the poorly-planned and i l l - f a t e d Wyatt's R e b e l l i o n , which led to Croft's imprisonment and subsequent loss of revenue.  Following Elizabeth's accession i n 1558, Croft was made Governor of  the town of Berwick, on the S c o t t i s h border, and took a major part i n the action against the French troops at L e i t h .  His eventual disgrace led to h i s  e x i l e from Court u n t i l 1570, i n which year he was created Comptroller of the Queen's Household, a p o s i t i o n he held for the remainder of h i s l i f e .  Chapter  Five deals not only w i t h h i s duties as Comptroller, but contains an examinat i o n of C r o f t ' s growing importance i n h i s home county of Herefordshire, and shows h i s i n c r e a s i n g influence and range of contacts at Court.  Croft's f i n a l  appearance two years before h i s death, was as a commissioner to negotiate w i t h the Spanish i n the Low Countries i n e a r l y 1588.  The f i n a l chapter of t h i s  thesis attempts to examine the s i g n i f i c a n c e of C r o f t as t y p i c a l of a s e c t i o n of Tudor s o c i e t y , and deals with some of the problems r a i s e d by modern h i s torians of the period. I n v e s t i g a t i o n has n e c e s s a r i l y been l i m i t e d by the shortage of records a v a i l a b l e for research.  In the absence of any c o l l e c t i o n of family papers,  the p r i n c i p a l sources have been various c o l l e c t i o n s of state papers and l e t t e r s , contemporary annals and d i a r i e s , and such sources as the Acts of the P r i v y Council and parliamentary records. involved, a s u r p r i s i n g amount of information extant.  In s p i t e of the d i f f i c u l t i e s concerning James Croft i s  A reasonably c l e a r o u t l i n e of h i s a c t i v i t i e s can be seen, and i t  has been possible to place him i n the larger context of sixteenth century society.  Iv  TABLE  OF  CONTENTS  CHAPTER I II III IV V VI VII  PAGE AN ARMY APPRENTICESHIP (1518-1551)  1  SERVICE IN IRELAND (1551-1553)  13  WYATT S REBELLION AND ITS AFTERMATH (1553-1558) . . . .  30  CROFT IN SCOTLAND (1558-1560)  52  EXILE, AND POLITICAL RESURRECTION (1560-1587)  73  NEGOTIATIONS WITH SPAIN (1587-1590)  91  1  CONCLUSION  105  FOOTNOTES  113  BIBLIOGRAPHY  136  1  CHAPTER I AN  ARMY APPRENTICESHIP  (1518-1551)  To obtain a p o s i t i o n of power and p r e s t i g e , and, therefore, of wealth, at any time during the sixteenth century, i t was not enough only to have talent.  The primary consideration making advancement possible was  not what you knew, but who you knew.  The Court was  definitely  the source f o r advance-  ment of any k i n d , and a p o s i t i o n at Court, or connection with somebody who had a p o s i t i o n at Court, was e s s e n t i a l i f one wished to obtain placement of any k i n d , be i t c i v i l , p o l i t i c a l , or e c c l e s i a s t i c a l .  Of course, i f one  was  born i n t o a noble family, advancement was made considerably e a s i e r , and p o s i tions of importance were frequently given to young men who recommend them than an i n h e r i t e d t i t l e . Cromwell,''" the son of a smith, who  had l i t t l e more to  The example of such men  as Thomas  entered r o y a l service under Wolsey, became  Chancellor, Treasurer, and eventually was  given the t i t l e of E a r l of Essex,  shows that a b i l i t y could be rewarded, but even Cromwell had needed influence to reach h i s p o s i t i o n , and that was not enough to save him from the block. In most other cases, r i s e to power was neither as spectacular nor as sudden as Cromwell's, but i t would be impossible to f i n d an example of anyone reaching a p o s i t i o n of importance without influence being used.  Talent was  recog-  nized during the Tudor era, but never i n e v i t a b l y and never e n t i r e l y for i t s own  sake. To one who was neither born i n t o a noble family nor was of  outstanding  n a t u r a l a b i l i t y , advancement i n any f i e l d was d i f f i c u l t , and often dependent to a large extent on good fortune.  And yet, by f a r the l a r g e s t number of  o f f i c i a l s , of the r e l a t i v e l y new c i v i l s e r v i c e , the army, or the church, came  2  from f a m i l i e s which were not among the foremost i n England, and power and wealth, even i f on a r e l a t i v e l y small s c a l e , were f o r them a question of hard work, luck, and a great deal of time.  I t i s easy to remember the Cromwells  and C e c i l s , whose importance dominates so much of the sixteenth century i n England, and to overlook the vast mass of administrators and o f f i c i a l s  who  were responsible for implementing the programmes and p o l i c i e s of the Tudor monarchs.  Cromwell and Burghley, because of t h e i r t a l e n t s and success, were  really atypical.  Much more r e a l i s t i c a p i c t u r e of the Tudor o f f i c i a l  can be  seen by studying the l i f e of one of those minor f i g u r e s who do not feature i n general studies of the age, and who have not merited f u l l - s c a l e biographies. One such o f f i c i a l ,  and one whose work for Tudor monarchs spans four reigns  and f i f t y years, and yet who has rated only passing mention i n accounts of 2 the period, was a Herefordshire gentleman named James C r o f t . I f events had followed a normal pattern, and i f C r o f t had not been ambit i o u s , h i s l i f e would have followed a d i f f e r e n t course.  Born into a Hereford-  s h i r e family of considerable l o c a l importance and with a background which 3 could be traced back to the time of W i l l i a m the Conqueror,  he could have been  expected to have a p o s i t i o n of power as a landlord and l o c a l administrator i n the area of north-west Herefordshire where he l i v e d .  As the eldest s u r v i v i n g  son of the f a m i l y , he would probably have become a J u s t i c e of the Peace, might be expected  to represent h i s county i n Parliament, and might even have taken  a part as a member of the Council of the Lords of the Welsh Marches, which met i n Ludlow, a few miles to the north, i n Shropshire.  As events occurred, he  held a l l these p o s i t i o n s at various times, but he also became Lord Deputy of I r e l a n d , Governor of Berwick, and spent the l a s t twenty years of h i s l i f e as Comptroller of Queen Elizabeth's household and as a member of the P r i v y C o u n c i l .  3  To understand how he reached these p o s i t i o n s and what part he had to play i n E n g l i s h a f f a i r s of the sixteenth century i s to understand a l i t t l e better the p i t f a l l s and the rewards which awaited .a f a i r l y t y p i c a l and ambitious  admini-  s t r a t o r of the period. The b i r t h - d a t e of James Croft has to remain s p e c u l a t i v e , as do the b i r t h dates of many Elizabethans, because of the absence of church or other records. However a probable date i s 1518, as i t was recorded upon the death of Richard C r o f t , h i s f a t h e r , on January 1, 1562,  that "...  the said James Croft i s son  4 and h e i r and 44 years of age."  James Croft's f a t h e r , Richard, l i v e d the  type of quiet l i f e that one might expect of a country gentleman, serving as a J u s t i c e of the Peace, and, no doubt, looking a f t e r h i s lands and At h i s death i n 1562,  tenants.  the estate l e f t to James, h i s h e i r , included more than  three thousand acres of land, together with cottages, water m i l l s , and ther income i n rent,"* which would have provided a comfortable did not have ambitions  further a f i e l d .  fur-  income i f one  I t would not be necessary to mention  James's grandfather, S i r Edward C r o f t , were i t not for the f a c t that, i n J u l y , 1625, he had been appointed one of the counsellors to Henry VIII's daughter, Mary,^ who was  to become Queen i n 1553.  Edward Croft had a d i s t i n g u i s h e d  career i n l o c a l a f f a i r s and i n the western counties of England, bordering Wales.  He died i n March, 1547, and i t i s quite possible that h i s long and  successful career had an influence upon h i s grandson. The family into which James Croft was born was not only a l i s h e d one, but also a large one containing a wide range of  long-estab-  connections.  James's great-grandfather, S i r Richard C r o f t , held a number of high p o s i tions under Edward V, i n c l u d i n g those of Treasurer of the Household and v i s e r to Arthur, Prince of Wales.  7  ad-  His w i f e , Eleanor, had previously been  4  married to S i r Hugh Mortimer, and her descendants included John Dudley, F i r s t  Q Duke of Northumberland, and h i s son, Robert Dudley, E a r l o f L e i c e s t e r .  The  eleven c h i l d r e n of S i r Edward C r o f t , James's grandfather, jmarried p r i n c i p a l l y into l o c a l Herefordshire and Shropshire f a m i l i e s , as d i d the seven brothers and s i s t e r s of James.  Thus, through marriage a l l i a n c e s , S i r James already  had very close connections throughout the Welsh border regions, and these were to be u s e f u l to h i s l a t e r career.  The r e l a t i o n s h i p with those men o f  n a t i o n a l importance, such as Northumberland and L e i c e s t e r , i s extremely tenuous, but i t i s possible that S i r James attached much s i g n i f i c a n c e to the connection.  A t l e a s t , i n 1561, Dudley, l a t e r to be E a r l of L e i c e s t e r , was acting  on Croft's behalf i n pressuring John Scudamore to allow a marriage between h i s 9 nephew and C r o f t ' s daughter, Eleanor, whom he referred to as "my kinswoman." S i r James married twice, the f i r s t time to A l i c e Warnecombe, widow of William Wigmore of Shobdon, near Croft C a s t l e , by whom he had three sons and four daughters, and the second time to Katherine Blount, by whom he had no issue. Katherine was a daughter of "Edward Blount, Esq.,"' '^ but whether she was con1  nected to the important family of the same name i s not c l e a r .  The most im-  portant connection Croft was to obtain through the marriages of h i s c h i l d r e n was the one above mentioned, that of h i s daughter Eleanor to John Scudamore. He was to become Gentleman Usher to Queen E l i z a b e t h , and h i s s i s t e r a ladyi n - w a i t i n g to the Queen, and there are frequent references made, p a r t i c u l a r l y i n the 1570's and 80's to influence which Lady Scudamore was able to wield at Court on her kinsman's behalf.  I n h i s book Two Tudor Conspiracies, D. M.  Loades notes that Croft was connected by marriage w i t h S i r Nicholas Throckmorton,' "' ' w i t h whom C r o f t c e r t a i n l y had many close contacts, but there 1  1  does not appear to be any evidence to support t h i s statement of a marriage relationship.  Nevertheless, influence obtained through kinsmen was to play  5  an important part i n Croft's career, and was one of which he was  to take f u l l  advantage. Except that he was  probably born i n 1518,  nothing i s known about the  e a r l y l i f e of James C r o f t u n t i l the f i r s t reference i s made to him i n As the eldest son of a well-to-do of action open to him.  1540.  gentleman, he would have several courses  I f he were not p a r t i c u l a r l y ambitious, he could  fol-  low the l e i s u r e l y country pursuits of h i s f a t h e r , l i v i n g at the family r e s i dence of Croft Castle and tending h i s estates. he may  I f he desired to get ahead,  have wished to attend u n i v e r s i t y , and from there obtain a p o s i t i o n ,  perhaps i n the Church, or possibly i n some f i e l d of the King's s e r v i c e .  How-  ever, the records of Oxford and Cambridge, the only u n i v e r s i t i e s i n England at the time, do not show his having attended e i t h e r u n i v e r s i t y , and, while i t i s possible that he could have studied i n Europe, no references i n d i c a t e that t h i s happened.  at l a t e r dates  The f i e l d of endeavour which Croft chose, and  which was not s u r p r i s i n g considering his family background and probable lack of a u n i v e r s i t y education, was  that of m i l i t a r y l i f e , and f i r s t references  to  him depict him as a s o l d i e r . Croft's i n t e r e s t i n m i l i t a r y a f f a i r s persisted throughout his l i f e , his  e a r l y career i n the army was  and  served i n r e l a t i v e l y unimportant p o s i t i o n s .  However, C r o f t i s not an uncommon name, and i t i s possible that the "Jas. Crofte" r e f e r r e d to i n December, 1540,  as a gunner serving at s i x pence a day  i n the King's f o r t r e s s at the "Castle next Sandwich" was 12 the same name.  a d i f f e r e n t man  with  The p o s s i b i l i t y increases with the next mention of Croft as 13  a knight of the s h i r e of Hereford i n 1541,  and with notice of his responsi-  b i l i t y , i n the f o l l o w i n g year, of mustering a force of thirty-seven men at 14 Shobdon, a v i l l a g e about four miles d i s t a n t from C r o f t C a s t l e . L i s t e d as a  6  "demilance", Croft's duties included not only making sure that t h i r t y - s e v e n men were a v a i l a b l e , but also that they were provided with "harness, a r t i l l e r y and other habiliments of w a r . "  15  Although h i s duties as a member of P a r l i a -  ment and as a l o c a l o f f i c i a l might suggest that C r o f t intended to s e t t l e into l o c a l a f f a i r s , the next references to him i n d i c a t e a d i f f e r e n t type of l i f e to be i n store for him. In 1544, with a grandiose show of f o r c e , Henry V I I I sent some f o r t y thousand men  to invade France from C a l a i s i n a move intended, as G. R. E l t o n  s t a t e s , "...  to combine with a Spanish thrust towards P a r i s ."^  s u l t of t h i s unnecessary attack was  The only r e -  the rapid conquest of Boulogne, which  England was permitted to keep u n t i l 1554, under the t r e a t y made between France and England i n June, 1546. man,  Henry, although i n f i r m and, at f i f t y - f o u r , an old  i n s i s t e d on accompanying h i s forces.  He was  joined by Edward Seymour,  l a t e r to become the f i r s t E a r l of Hertford, Duke of Somerset, and Lord Protector  i n the f i r s t h a l f of Edward VI's r e i g n .  Seymour was not i n charge of the  siege of Boulogne, which was under the command of the E a r l of Surrey, son of the Duke of Norfolk.  There was already b i t t e r n e s s between Surrey and Seymour,  because Seymour was known to favour e c c l e s i a s t i c a l reform, while Surrey ( a l though not a C a t h o l i c ) and h i s father were r e l i g i o u s l y conservative.  The  b i t t e r n e s s must have increased with the a d d i t i o n of personal jealousy when Seymour was c a l l e d i n to r e c t i f y the blunders of Surrey i n l a t e October of 1545.  17  The d e t a i l s of t h e i r r e l a t i o n s h i p would not be relevant to the topic  were i t not for the f a c t that i t was under the E a r l of Surrey that C r o f t f i r s t began h i s r i s e , and under Seymour (then Duke of Somerset) that he was l a t e r to be given a knighthood and h i s f i r s t major p o s i t i o n of a u t h o r i t y . At Boulogne, however, Croft was,  at f i r s t , i n no p o s i t i o n to be t h i n k i n g  7  of a knighthood, or of a c l a s h i n l o y a l t i e s between h i s immediate superior, the headstrong Surrey, and the more i n f l u e n t i a l Seymour.  F i r s t mention of  Croft i s as an u n d e r - o f f i c e r , where he i s described as a w a t e r b a i l i f f , w i t h 18 four men serving under him.  Although Boulogne was a port, and most sup-  p l i e s would have to be sent by ship from England, h i s duties could not have been heavy, as he was l a t e r discharged from h i s p o s i t i o n , which was described V  as "superfluous," i n a l e t t e r from the Council at Boulogne i n February, 1546. The C o u n c i l , headed by Surrey, recommended Croft as a lieutenant of "the Old Man,"  the ancient tower which had been f o r t i f i e d by the English and which 20 guarded the approach to the harbour of Boulogne. However, the p o s i t i o n had 21 already been f i l l e d , as Paget informed Surrey l a t e r that month.  The fact  that the same l e t t e r also contained the news that Seymour was being sent over to replace Surrey as lieutenant general at Boulogne would i n d i c a t e that favour shown by Surrey might not be advantageous to a s o l d i e r seeking advancement, but, i n any case, the post was no longer a v a i l a b l e .  A month l a t e r , however,  on March 21, Surrey was informed that, the p o s i t i o n of under-marshal  being  v o i d , "... the King has ordained Mr. C r o f t , whom you l a t e l y commended, to be 22 under-marshal."  Seymour was, at t h i s time, i n Boulogne, and Surrey t e c h n i -  c a l l y under h i s command. However, Surrey may w e l l have found i t easier to have h i s way w i t h the P r i v y Council i f Seymour was not present to veto h i s recommendations, and, f o r t h i s reason, he may not have objected to Seymour's presence i n Boulogne. I t i s not c l e a r what a u t h o r i t y C r o f t had as under-marshal, but the p o s i t i o n probably made him a member of the Council of Boulogne, which governed the town and adjacent t e r r i t o r i e s under d i r e c t i o n from the King and P r i v y Council. That t h i s i s l i k e l y i s indicated by the f a c t that Croft's name f i r s t turns up  8  as a member of the Council on August 21, 1546, year, he was "...  and, i n September of that  l i s t e d as being a vice-marshal, with a u t h o r i t y , with others,  to hear and determine according to the laws of the county of Guisnes a l l  causes c r i m i n a l and c i v i l a r i s i n g w i t h i n the towns of Upper and Lower Boulogne, and the c a s t l e s or f o r t i f i c a t i o n s c a l l e d l e Olde Man, C i t i d e l [ s i c ] ."  Bolenberge and l e  Mention of C r o f t as a C o u n c i l l o r continues u n t i l February,  25 1547,  although i t i s possible he may have served longer.  The C o u n c i l , by  the time C r o f t f i r s t appears as a member, was under the d i r e c t i o n of Lord Grey, Surrey having returned to England, where he was s h o r t l y to become r a s h l y i n volved i n a p l o t against Henry, and to lose h i s head.  The p r i n c i p a l purpose  of the C o u n c i l , as a l e t t e r of January 4, 1547 s t a t e s , was probably to keep the Council i n England informed about "...  the garrisons i n every piece, the  money i n the treasurer's hands, the f u r n i t u r e of v i c t u a l s , and a l l other 26 things meet to be advertised."  P o s i t i o n on the Council would have given  C r o f t an opportunity of being noticed by those who would be able to advance his career, and he would no doubt have attempted other than purely administrat i v e methods i n order to advance h i s cause. The three years Croft spent i n Boulogne would not e n t i r e l y be taken up w i t h h i s duties as an o f f i c e r and, l a t e r , a C o u n c i l l o r . In J u l y , 1546, Dudley,  l a t e r to become Duke of Northumberland, a r r i v e d i n Boulogne, from where  he t r a v e l l e d to Melun, near P a r i s , to meet with the French King. At t h i s time Dudley was Lord Admiral, and h i s entourage as ambassador included " d i v e r s 27 lords and gentlemen."  I t i s not u n l i k e l y to suppose that Croft was one of  these gentlemen, although t h i s i s e n t i r e l y conjecture.  As indicated by Dud-  ley's v i s i t , r e l a t i o n s with France at the time were c o r d i a l , although was only a temporary s i t u a t i o n .  this  As with the other o f f i c e r s at Boulogne, Croft  9  entertained, and was entertained by, h i s French counterparts, and evidence e x i s t s that he and "other E n g l i s h gentlemen" dined and hunted with C h a s t i l l o n , 28 the French commander.  At C r o f t ' s house i n Boulogne, the French were wined  and dined, and no doubt army l i f e could be made quite pleasurable i n such ways.  Celebrations were held on February 24 to 28, 1547, marking the corona-  t i o n of Edward VI, Henry having died on January 28, and at the ceremonies Croft took part as a "padrino,"  or leader, of the challengers i n the jousts 29  between the E n g l i s h and the French.  The four days of "honourable pastimes"  ended with a masquerade, at which Croft was a t t i r e d "... i n a very f a i r mask, a l l suited i n p i l g r i m s ' [sic] apparel of black v e l v e t ... ."^  I t is unlikely  that C r o f t would have got ahead i f he had not been a hard-working member of the C o u n c i l , but f r i v o l o u s a c t i v i t i e s , of the type mentioned, probably brought him a t t e n t i o n which was equally as important as that aroused by h i s administrative abilities . Between the l a s t mention of Croft i n Boulogne, i n February 1547, next recorded appearance, i n 1549, he was granted a knighthood. no evidence e x i s t s as to the exact circumstances surrounding  and h i s  Unfortunately,  h i s r e c e i p t of  t h i s honour, which c e r t a i n l y indicated that he was w e l l thought of by Somerset, the Lord P r o t e c t o r .  I t i s improbable that he received i t for service at  Boulogne, which was,  as i n d i c a t e d , peaceful at t h i s time, even though h o s t i l i -  t i e s were to break out again s h o r t l y afterwards.  As a f a i r l y junior o f f i c e r ,  i t i s not u n l i k e l y that Croft may have been transferred to serve i n Scotland, which was invaded e a r l y i n 1547 by troops under the leadership of Somerset. The campaign i n Scotland was remarkably successful for the E n g l i s h , and at the end of the year the Lord Protector r a i s e d a large number of gentlemen to the rank of knight.  Although Croft's name i s not included i n the l i s t  given  10  by Grafton i n h i s Chronicles,  t h i s does not preclude Croft from having r e -  ceived a knighthood at t h i s time, and, i n f a c t , t h i s i s most probably what occurred. In May,  1549 Croft was i n Haddington, a town on the S c o t t i s h border,  where he may have been since leaving Boulogne two years p r e v i o u s l y . In a l e t t e r from the Council to the E a r l of Rutland, who had been appointed L i e u tenant of the North, C r o f t , and a Mr. Cotton, are recommended as men  who  32 "...  serve the King very w e l l and i n places of c r e d i t  but the places  of c r e d i t are not mentioned, although the inference i s that they were both i n Haddington.  Henry Manners, second E a r l of Rutland, was apparently a f r i e n d  of Warwick's, and had made depositions e a r l y i n 1549 against Seymour, the Lord Admiral and brother of the P r o t e c t o r . L a t e r , he was to show himself an extreme member of the reformed church party, and was imprisoned, on Mary's 33 accession, f o r being an adherent of Lady Jane Grey.  These facts are i n -  t e r e s t i n g , as they e x p l a i n a good deal of Croft's actions during the next few years.  L i k e Rutland, Croft was to b e n e f i t from Lord Protector Northumberland,  and was also to spend some time i n imprisonment as a r e b e l against Mary Tudor. Rutland and Croft appear to have been q u i t e c l o s e f r i e n d s , and Croft's r i s e would not be hurt by the amity which e x i s t e d between Rutland and Northumberland . Even before Rutland a r r i v e d i n Haddington, he was apparently w e l l known 34 by C r o f t .  At l e a s t , C r o f t describes himself as "your poore frende"  and does  not h e s i t a t e i n g i v i n g Rutland a great deal of advice about h i s d u t i e s . Much of the advice appears l a r g e l y a matter of common sense—"doo noo ponishmente upon colour jjL.e., anger] ," "advise w e l l what you promese and kepe i t , " " d e a l l streyght"  35 --but C r o f t would hardly be l i k e l y to o f f e r such advice to a new  commander unless he already knew him w e l l .  Croft must have had himself i n  mind when he suggested that " I n matters of warr tacke thadvise of men of warr, 36 and soo i n a l l other matters use men of the s e l f s k i l l . "  Croft was trusted  s u f f i c i e n t l y by Rutland to be sent to report to the Council on the state of 37 a f f a i r s i n Scotland i n October, 1549,  but by t h i s time had reached a p o s i -  t i o n of some importance, having become general of Haddington. Croft's appointment as general appears to have come about almost by luck, as he was one of the best q u a l i f i e d men a v a i l a b l e when S i r James W i l f o r d , the appointed general, was taken prisoner by the French, who c o n t r o l l e d the g a r r i 38 son of Dumbarre.  Of course, the job could have been given to someone e l s e ,  but Croft was r e a d i l y a v a i l a b l e , had some knowledge of warfare, and was, to put the cap on i t , a f r i e n d of Rutland's. ... S i r James Crofts was thought a man most meet to supplie the place and therefore by the l o r d protector and others of the c o u n s e l l was ordeined g e n e r a l l of that towne of Hadington, and the garrison there, i n which room he bare himself so w o r t h i l i e , as i f I should not be suspected of f l a t t e r i e , for that he l i v e t h y e t , and i n such c r e d i t (as the world knoweth) I might moove myself matter to saie rather much than s u f f i c i e n t l i e inough i n h i s due and r i g h t deserved com39 mendation. Holinshed was over-complimentary, but he was no doubt correct i n assuming that Croft d i d h i s job w e l l .  Rutland was probably sorry to lose a gambling com-  p a n i o n ^ almost as much as he was to lose a general when, on November 12, 1549, 4 the Council decided to appoint Croft as "Generall of the Fotemen" at Boulogne. The conquest of Boulogne i n 1544 had never been an outstanding success. England c o n t r o l l e d the town, but against mounting French b i t t e r n e s s .  Tension  was increased when the French provided money, arms, and men to help the Scots, as evidenced by t h e i r capture of Croft's predecessor as general, S i r James Wilford.  The o r i g i n a l agreement was that France would repurchase Boulogne,  12  but neither side wished to l i v e up to the bargain.  Although both France and  England hesitated to commit themselves to war, on August 8, 1549, war was f i n a l l y declared by the E n g l i s h .  Mounting pressures both i n Scotland and i n  France, coupled w i t h several ignominious defeats, forced the Council to make peace, and on A p r i l 25, 1550, Boulogne was returned to France a f t e r less than 42 s i x years i n E n g l i s h possession.  As "Generall of the Fotemen," C r o f t would  have had an important p o s i t i o n , but i t i s u n l i k e l y that any blame would be attached to him for the E n g l i s h abdication of the c i t y , which was a p o l i t i c a l , rather than a m i l i t a r y , defeat.  In f a c t , Nicolas records that two of 43  Croft's brothers, John and Edward, were k i l l e d at the siege of Boulogne, and Croft's appointment less than a year l a t e r , as Lord Deputy of I r e l a n d , would hardly have been made i f Croft had not borne himself w e l l .  13  CHAPTER I I SERVICE  By 1551, tion.  Croft may  IN  IRELAND  (1551-1553)  w e l l have f e l t that he was due for further  recogni-  He had managed to hold i n c r e a s i n g l y important positions i n the army,  both as a s o l d i e r and administrator, and, most importantly, had not made any i n f l u e n t i a l enemies.  His f r i e n d s h i p with such men  as Rutland would be use-  f u l to him, and he had doubtless brought himself to the a t t e n t i o n of other i n f l u e n t i a l men  at Court.  The p o s i t i o n he was  land, and depended on h i s m i l i t a r y a b i l i t i e s .  eventually given was Considering the  unsettled conditions e x i s t i n g there, the task facing him was  in.Ire-  perpetually  one which would  tax h i s ingenuity to the utmost. Conditions i n Ireland i n the mid-sixteenth century could best be s c r i b e d , i n an understatement, as "tangled,"  and any attempt to cut  de-  the  Gordian knot of confusion and to sort out the problems i s d i f f i c u l t indeed.  1  What makes the task p a r t i c u l a r l y complicated i s that no i n t e r n a l u n i t y e x i s ted w i t h i n the country, with the exception of the u n i t y which England was able to impose on that small s t r i p of t e r r i t o r y , extending along the coast north and south of Dublin, known as the Pale.  Although England nominally  c o n t r o l l e d I r e l a n d , i t was not u n t i l the mid-1530's that England decided to r e - e s t a b l i s h c o n t r o l over Dublin, a d e c i s i o n which was  prompted p r i m a r i l y by  fears that, a f t e r the English Reformation, an I r i s h Catholic n o b i l i t y might combine with a foreign power, Spain, or, p o s s i b l y , France, to eject the English.  Re-establishment of c o n t r o l was  complicated by the f a c t that great  r u l i n g lords had carved out what amounted to small kingdoms of t h e i r own, objected to r e l i n q u i s h i n g any of t h e i r power.  and  Religious d i s u n i t y , although  14  i t had o r i g i n a t e d with Henry VIII's Reformation, d i d not become a v i t a l issue u n t i l 1547, with the a p p l i c a t i o n to Ireland of changes which had been brought 2 about i n England by Somerset, and, l a t e r , Northumberland. ing England by 1551,  therefore, was of a semi-barbaric  The s i t u a t i o n f a c -  and wholly d i s u n i t e d  country, c o n s i s t i n g of rebels f i g h t i n g both themselves and the E n g l i s h , with the added threat of possible i n t e r v e n t i o n by a foreign power.  England's  p o l i c y of f o r c i n g r e l i g i o u s changes onto<an already d i s s a t i s f i e d people f u r ther complicated  the i s s u e , and made the job of administrator both onerous  and extremely d i f f i c u l t . The Lord Deputy of I r e l a n d , through whom England governed the had been S i r Anthony St. Leger from 1540, with a hiatus i n 1548.  country, He  had  been responsible for Henry V I I I s programme of gradually subduing the I r i s h 1  3 and r e p l a c i n g the o l d t r i b a l system of land tenure with the English system. St. Leger's p o l i c y of "a j u d i c i a l admixture of force and c o n c i l i a t i o n " s u c c e s s f u l , although Henry thought that St. Leger was granting Irishmen t h e i r requests.  This complaint was,  was  somewhat too free i n i n f a c t , to lead to  S t . Leger's d i s m i s s a l , although t h i s did not occur u n t i l Edward's r e i g n and was  to prove to be only temporary. ' Although h i s methods had proved remark-  ably s u c c e s s f u l , S t . Leger had encountered jealousy and resentment, p a r t i c u l a r l y among c e r t a i n Anglican c l e r i c s , who were offended by h i s p o l i c y of enlightened tolerance.  I t was complaints from Archbishop Browne of Dublin i n  1551 which eventually led to h i s d i s m i s s a l i n A p r i l of that year, and to h i s replacement by S i r James C r o f t , who was already i n Ireland at the  time.  Croft had been summoned by the Council on February 3, 1551, to return immediately to London, presumably from Boulogne where he was General i n 5  charge of the Foot.  Apparently,  i t had previously been decided that an ex-  15  p e d i t i o n commanded by Lord Cobham would be sent into I r e l a n d .  Although t h i s  plan had been a l t e r e d , Croft was sent to make necessary preparations for such an expedition.  St. Leger was ordered to c r e d i t C r o f t , who was "... to view  Cork and Kinsale and the ports a d j o i n i n g ;  to appoint places to be f o r t i f i e d ;  to view Baltimore and Beare, and the havens between them and Kinsale ...."  7  The C o u n c i l , which included Lord Cobham, a devoted adherent of Northumberland and the man who had been chosen to lead the I r i s h expedition, ordered two g hundred pounds to be paid over to Croft for h i s duties i n I r e l a n d . By the end of March, the young King Edward was noting i n h i s c h r o n i c l e that Croft had a r r i v e d i n Waterford, where he was consulting with S t . Leger about f o r t i es f i c a t i o n s for that town. The o r i g i n a l purpose i n sending Croft to Ireland had been to prepare f o r an expedition to be led by Cobham.  The suspected threat from France, however,  had diminished, and Cobham s proposed expedition had been cancelled by the 1  Council.  Nevertheless,  i t was decided to keep Croft i n I r e l a n d , and even to  increase the number of foot and horsemen under h i s command.  This d e c i s i o n  suggests that Northumberland had decided that the c o n c i l i a t o r y e f f o r t s of S t . Leger were unsuccessful, and that a m i l i t a r y government, led by C r o f t , might succeed where the gentler methods of St. Leger had f a i l e d .  Croft was  q u a l i f i e d to serve as a m i l i t a r y governor, having had some ten years of army experience,  and, as t h i s was v i r t u a l l y h i s only recommendation, i t i s most  l i k e l y that he was chosen to replace St. Leger i n the hope that the problem of Ireland could be solved by a d i s p l a y of force.  On A p r i l 11 "... i t was  determyned S i r Anthony S e i n t l e g e r , now Deputie there, shulde be revoked and that the saied S i r James Crofte s h a l l supplie the p l a c e , b u t  St. Leger  was not n o t i f i e d of t h i s d e c i s i o n by the Council u n t i l A p r i l 15, when he was  16  ordered to leave the King's lands i n the same state as he had found them, and to see government turned over to C r o f t .  1 1  St. Leger can hardly have been  pleased at the news, even i f , as Strype suggests, the King had declared he 12  wished him close at hand, where he could be of more use to the kingdom.  At  any r a t e , S t . Leger could not have antagonized Northumberland i n any way, as he was to replace C r o f t i n the same p o s i t i o n only two years  later.  As Lord Deputy, C r o f t would be forced, because of the distance and time involved i n sending d i r e c t i o n s , to use h i s own i n i t i a t i v e , but, i n general, he had to f o l l o w the orders l a i d down for him by the C o u n c i l , which acted as a rubber stamp for Northumberland.  His p r i n c i p a l duties would be to increase  E n g l i s h sovereignty over the i s l a n d , to b u i l d up defences against a possible invasion, and to ensure that r e l i g i o u s a t t i t u d e s were s u i t a b l y Protestant, i n accordance w i t h Northumberland's p o l i c y .  Of more immediate concern, how-  ever, C r o f t was ordered to farm out lands, and to s e l l wardships and marriages, which were i n the King's holding.  A l s o , he was to hear complaints made against  English s o l d i e r s , and to punish offenders according to m a r t i a l law.  These i n -  s t r u c t i o n s , which included the statement that the Lord Deputy was to be paid one thousand pounds a year, are included i n the King's Warrant-Book, which mentions, i n a d d i t i o n , that a surveyor of mines and metals was to be appointed, who would also look into the matter of coinage.  13  Although C r o f t was now appointed Lord Deputy, h i s p o s i t i o n was already i n jeopardy.  According to Strype, the young King included i n a l i s t of things  to be deliberated upon the i n t e r e s t i n g consideration t h a t , f o r the good of I r e l a n d , i t might be b e t t e r i f three councils were set up there, each under a 14  d i f f e r e n t chairman', and each s i t t i n g i n a d i f f e r e n t part of the country. Although nothing came of t h i s idea i t showed a s u r p r i s i n g degree of maturity  17  and o r i g i n a l i t y on Edward's part.  No doubt, i f the idea was  ever broached to  Northumberland, he would be eager to suppress i t , p a r t l y because i t would lessen h i s c o n t r o l on the government of I r e l a n d , and also because i t would i n dicate a weakening of his personal r u l e . t i o n "... ...be  In a d d i t i o n , Edward made the sugges-  whether Croft should s t i l l remain deputy, or some person of n o b i l i t y  placed i n his room." ' 1  5  There i s no i n d i c a t i o n that t h i s thought had  anything to do with Croft's a b i l i t i e s , or lack of them, but i t probably suggests that Edward believed that someone of noble b i r t h i n the p o s i t i o n of Lord Deputy would i n d i c a t e the importance England placed upon I r i s h a f f a i r s . The change-over from St. Leger to Croft was out acrimony. l a t e as May  smooth and apparently  with-  Croft had been appointed Lord Deputy on A p r i l 11, but even as  20 o f f i c i a l n o t i f i c a t i o n of his appointment had not been received  i n I r e l a n d , and i t was recorded that " S i r Anthony Sentleger governs but by S i r 16 James Croft's advice t i l l the patent for Croft's deputation One  shall arrive."  thousand of the s o l d i e r s which the Council had decided should be sent to  Ireland had landed, but, as was  often the case, i n s i m i l a r s i t u a t i o n s , money  to pay the troops was not forthcoming.  Shortly before the s o l d i e r s a r r i v e d ,  Richard C r o f t , presumably a r e l a t i v e (but not l i k e l y Croft's f a t h e r ) , had been sent there by the C o u n c i l , and was  to be given "...  venient for him i n the consideracion of his service."''"  7  also  some rome there conI t was,  of course,  common for nepotism to f l o u r i s h at Court, but t h i s i s the f i r s t recorded time that James Croft had been able to reward h i s own r e l a t i v e s i n any way.  How-  ever, as an i l l u s t r a t i o n of t h i s facet of administrative l i f e , he also r e warded a nephew of St. Leger's, by g i v i n g him a p o s i t i o n i n the north of 18 Ireland because he had "...  honestly served h i s uncle i n those parts."  Re-  l a t i o n s h i p s between St. Leger and h i s successor could not have been too a c r i -  18  monious i f C r o f t would use h i s p o s i t i o n to reward St. Leger's r e l a t i v e s . The primary reason that Croft had been appointed Lord Deputy was  probably  because of Northumberland's desire to increase English c o n t r o l over I r e l a n d . To b r i n g t h i s p o l i c y into e f f e c t , Croft had to lead the large number of s o l d i e r s which had been sent and to e s t a b l i s h d i r e c t r u l e over parts of the country beyond the Pale.  Although he d i d not o f f i c i a l l y become Deputy u n t i l  19 June 1,  i t i s probable that before that date Croft had begun to subdue some  of the more r e b e l l i o u s parts of I r e l a n d .  Among h i s orders from the P r i v y  Council were those which would ensure "...  the f o r t i f i c a t i o n of c e r t a i n havens  i n the south and north," and the reducing of L e i n s t e r to order, "... wherein 20 the Cavernaghs, Tooles, and Byrnes doo inhabite." By June 10, the Council was noting that Croft was i n the remote parts of I r e l a n d , "... beginning to 21 set j u s t i c e and law i n good hand where they were unknown."  The same l e t t e r  from the Council mentions that many of the havens which had belonged to the enemy had been captured by C r o f t , and were being f o r t i f i e d by E n g l i s h troops. To begin w i t h , therefore, Croft seems to have been successful i n e f f e c t i n g Northumberland's prime o b j e c t i v e , that of tightening English c o n t r o l , and  the  Council must have been pleased that i t could j u s t l y a f f i r m that " I r e l a n d grows 22 towards good p o l i c y . " To someone of Croft's temperament, the act of subduing the r e b e l l i o u s I r i s h must have come a l o t easier than f i n d i n g a s o l u t i o n to some of the other problems to which the Council had r e f e r r e d . As mentioned above, Croft's predecessor, St. Leger, had been dismissed r a i s e d by Archbishop Browne, who be objectionable.  l a r g e l y on the strength of objections  believed St. Leger's p o l i c y of t o l e r a t i o n to  One of S t . Leger's suggestions had been that the l i t u r g y  used i n the service should be i n the I r i s h language, understood by a vast  19  majority of Irishmen, rather than i n E n g l i s h , which was spoken by only an edu23 cated few.  This suggestion had been turned down f l a t , by the Council as  w e l l as by Archbishop Browne, but would undoubtedly have made advancement of the Reformation easier among the Irish-speaking population. S t . Leger, however, had ordered to be printed an e d i t i o n of the r e c e n t l y established l i t u r g y ( i n E n g l i s h ) , and t h i s Book of Common Prayer, the f i r s t book ever to be p r i n ted  i n Dublin, ended w i t h a prayer f o r the Lord Deputy "... S i r James C r o f t ,  now governour over t h i s realm, under our most dread and sovereign Lord, 24 Edward the S i x t h . " Not a l l church leaders i n Ireland were as zealous Protestants as Browne, the Archbishop of D u b l i n . C r o f t ' s major opponent i n e f f e c t i n g changes w i t h i n the I r i s h church was the Archbishop of Armagh, George Dowdall.  Dowdall had  refused point-blank to accept any of the proposed changes i n the l i t u r g y "... by which, as he expressed i t , every i l l i t e r a t e f e l l o w might be enabled 25 to read Mass."  Dowdall"s f o r t h r i g h t disapproval made him extremely popular  among the m a j o r i t y of Irishmen, and t h e i r wish to keep the o l d form of service was strengthened by the conduct of many of the English troops, who had looted churches and sold what they had s t o l e n . Croft himself seemed to be i n favour of the new changes w i t h i n the church. At l e a s t , he must have given Northumberland  that impression, or he would never  have been chosen as the successor to S t . Leger.  Croft's p o s i t i o n , i n t h i s as  i n other matters i n v o l v i n g r e l i g i o u s changes, appears to be one of opportunism. At no time i n h i s l i f e d i d he evidence any p a r t i c u l a r preference or leaning e i t h e r towards protestantism or Catholicism, but there i s no doubt that he r e a l i z e d the necessity of supporting h i s superior's p o l i c y i f he did not want to be speedily replaced. Because Dowdall was such an i n f l u e n t i a l f i g u r e i n  20  the I r i s h church, one of Croft's f i r s t cares, as Leland suggests, "... was  to  labour by persuasion and address, to soften his o p p o s i t i o n , and r e c o n c i l e him 27 to the new regulations of public worship."  Of course, Croft could have  attempted a heavy-handed approach and thus have further angered Dowdall, who had r e t i r e d to an abbey outside Dublin and refused to have any contact with those, such as Browne, who  accepted the new l i t u r g y .  But i t i s to Croft's  c r e d i t that he attempted a c o n c i l i a t o r y approach and requested  a meeting with  Dowdall to discuss the changes i n worship, thus f l a t t e r i n g Dowdall and at l e a s t averting a confrontation before l e t t i n g each side of the question be heard.  Croft further reminded Dowdall that even the bishops of Rome acknow-  ledged that a subject must be obedient to h i s sovereign, and suggested that a public debate be c a r r i e d out between Dowdall and himself, supported by the 28 Bishop of Meath, who advocated reform of worship. Although Dowdall thought the meeting would be to no a v a i l "... as our judgments, opinions, and con29 sciences are d i f f e r e n t , "  he agreed to accept Croft's o f f e r , and the confer-  ence was held on June 17,  1551.  I t was v a i n to hope that e i t h e r side would be converted by the arguments of the other, but as a diplomatic gesture towards c o n c i l i a t i o n , the conference was a hopeful idea on Croft's part.  The meeting might also have helped  to d i s c r e d i t the r e l i g i o u s conservatives, although, considering the nature of the protagonists and the s i t u a t i o n chosen for the debate, t h i s hope would have been somewhat i n v a i n . .  I t was also diplomatic of C r o f t to agree that  the t a l k s should take place i n St. Mary's Abbey, where Dowdall had been i n s e c l u s i o n . "Croft himself had l i t t l e part i n the conference, which was  princi-  p a l l y a t h e o l o g i c a l dispute on such matters as the o r i g i n s of the Mass and  the  importance of the V i r g i n Mary, and l e f t the debate to Staples, Bishop of Meath.  21  However, at the beginning of the debate, i n answer to a question of Dowdall's, Croft explained that h i s reason f o r wanting Dowdall to comply w i t h the bishops favouring reform was that he "... would f a i n unite you and them, i f possible," a noble motive, but one pre-doomed to f a i l u r e .  31  As Dowdall noted at the end of  the meeting: ... I s i g n i f i e d to your honour, that a l l was i n v a i n , when two parties should meet of a contrary opinion; and that your l o r d ships pains therein would be l o s t . . . . ^ 1  However, the debate had been amicable, and i t i s doubtful that Leland i s correct when he w r i t e s of Croft and Dowdall that "... each r e t i r e d w i t h s t i l l 32 greater acrimony against the other."  Although nothing p r o f i t a b l e resulted  from the d i s c u s s i o n i t was a worthwhile attempt on Croft's part, and c e r t a i n l y nothing had been l o s t by i t . Needless to say, however, r e l i g i o u s controversy had not been s t i l l e d by t h i s debate, and was to remain a major problem.  I t was i n t e n s i f i e d by Browne's  i n s i s t e n c e on being named Primate of A l l I r e l a n d , a t i t l e which had previously been given to the Archbishop of Armagh, but which the King granted to Browne, 33 much to Dowdall's chagrin.  Dowdall, although at the height of h i s popular-  i t y , r e t i r e d to the continent, probably because he feared further sanctions being c a r r i e d out against him, and remained there u n t i l the beginning of Mary's r e i g n , when he resumed h i s former p o s i t i o n as Primate. Croft also had the r e 34 s p o n s i b i l i t y of recommending bishops to vacant sees. Although Leverous, whom 35 Croft suggested should be made Bishop of Ossory,  was known to be attached  to the o l d d o c t r i n e s , Croft probably put forward h i s name because Leverous was acknowledged  to be both learned and d i s c r e e t .  However, the see was eventually  given to John Bale, an Englishman who was eloquent and s i n c e r e , but had l i t t l e  22  f e e l i n g or sympathy f o r the problems of the I r i s h .  Croft's suggestion of  Basnet f o r the now-vacant see of Armagh was apparently prompted by the con36 s i d e r a t i o n that Basnet was "... experimented  i n the wars of the country,"  but Edward turned down t h i s appointment and named another Englishman, Hugh Goodacre, as bishop.  The f i n a l vacant see, that of Cashel, remained without  a bishop during the r e s t of Edward's r e i g n .  C r o f t ' s suggestions f o r the two  posts were unorthodox but imaginative, and although n e i t h e r man was appointed bishop, they might have been more h e l p f u l to Croft than the two men who were appointed, as w e l l as been more acceptable to the I r i s h . The other major problem which faced Croft during h i s period as Lord 37 Deputy was the new I r i s h coinage.  There had been no d i f f e r e n c e between  E n g l i s h and I r i s h coinage u n t i l 1460, when, with the i n t e n t i o n of loosening E n g l i s h t i e s , the coinage had been degraded.  By the time of Henry V I I I ,  I r i s h coinage was more than h a l f a l l o y , and trade was thrown into confusion, w i t h r e s u l t i n g discontent.  I r i s h coinage came to be used only w i t h i n I r e l a n d ,  and trade had to be c a r r i e d out w i t h a reputable currency, e i t h e r s t e r l i n g or foreign crowns.  Inhabitants of the major I r i s h c i t i e s had signed a p e t i t i o n  to the King, asking that coinage be i d e n t i c a l i n both kingdoms, but the Counc i l h e s i t a t e d to a c t . Although the King's advisers d i d not deny the f a c t s , they took no a c t i o n u n t i l e a r l y 1552, a f t e r a year of r i s i n g c r i s i s i n the coinage.  That C r o f t recognized the problem to be of primary importance i s 38  shown by a l e t t e r he wrote to the Council i n August 1531,  i n which he r e -  quested that I r i s h money be made of equal value w i t h E n g l i s h . To anyone with a f i x e d income, which C r o f t nominally had as Deputy, i n f l a t i o n would be part i c u l a r l y bad, as he pointed out: Neyther ys ther any man presentely h a b u l l to lyve apon h i s  23  entertaynemente, but as we force the country, the continuance whereof w o l l growe to a weryness.39 Although goods were p l e n t i f u l , prices were beginning to soar, and "... thing that was worth one penny i s now worth four . .. ."^  every  The Council was  be-  ginning to r e a l i z e that the s i t u a t i o n would have to be set r i g h t , as was shown when the C o u n c i l l o r s commented, on September 25, on the f a l l of the money, and added "...  that ordre may  Counselles  request."  be taken therein according to the sayd Deputie and  41  The year 1551 had been a good one for C r o f t . Deputy was  His appointment as Lord  a major achievement, and h i s f i r s t months i n o f f i c e had been reason-  ably s u c c e s s f u l , even i f the p r i n c i p a l problems s t i l l e x i s t e d .  He had  tried  to extend E n g l i s h power without being involved i n any major c o n f l i c t , and  had  secured and strengthened many of the ports against a possible f o r e i g n attack. Relationships w i t h the Church had been c o r d i a l , even i f Dowdall had not been convinced by any arguments to a l t e r h i s strong C a t h o l i c stance.  The problem  of the debased coinage had at l e a s t been noticed by the C o u n c i l , which appeared ready to act to make coinage of the two countries equal.  Although  Edward may have had doubts about Croft's e f f e c t i v e n e s s , i n November he s i g n i f i e d h i s pleasure at Croft's months i n o f f i c e by rewarding him with one thou42 sand pounds, and by making him a member of the P r i v y Chamber.  Unfortunately,  1552 was not to be as successful a year for the new Lord Deputy. I n f l a t i o n , which had been growing r a p i d l y , got completely out of hand i n the f i r s t few months of 1552.  The Council could no longer continue i t s p o l i c y  of mouthing p l a t i t u d e s and was  forced to take concrete action to prevent trade  from breaking down completely.  In January, a "common s u p p l i c a t i o n " had been  sent to the Council from C r o f t and the Council i n I r e l a n d , which included  24  signatures of members of the I r i s h n o b i l i t y , merchants, and "gentlemen." The lack of goods i n I r e l a n d , they asserted, was caused by the money c r i s i s "... without remedye thereof y t i s thought almost ympossible to s e t t a 44 staye."  On March 22, the s i t u a t ion had s t i l l not been remedied, and C r o f t  reported that corn which should be s e l l i n g for two or three s h i l l i n g s a measure, but which had been s i x s h i l l i n g s and eight pence when C r o f t f i r s t a r r i v e d i n I r e l a n d , was now s e l l i n g for t h i r t y s h i l l i n g s .  He added that the  s i t u a t i o n did not bother the average Irishman, who "carethe onely for h i s bealy and that not d e l i c a t e l y . ..," but was most grievous to those with f i x e d 45 incomes, such as himself.  While C r o f t was c o r r e c t i n assuming that those  w i t h f i x e d incomes suffered most during a period of i n f l a t i o n , i t was unr e a l i s t i c to include himself among these.  His pay as Deputy was f i x e d , but  i t would be naive to consider t h i s amount h i s t o t a l income. As J . E. Neale 46 has explained,  compensation was obtainable i n such forms as "fees" or "gra-  t u i t i e s , " which swelled an o f f i c i a l ' s income f a r beyond what i t would appear to be simply looking at h i s s a l a r y .  I t was true that a money c r i s i s had no  great e f f e c t on the average I r i s h peasant, who probably had l i t t l e chance to :  use money, and Croft was c o r r e c t , i f somewhat hard-hearted, when he ascribed the greatest s u f f e r i n g to gentlemen with f i x e d incomes. A l l things being r e l a t i v e , an I r i s h peasant probably suffered no more i n the Spring of 1552 than he had a year e a r l i e r , while pensioners, or "stypendaries" as Croft c a l l e d them, were beginning to f e e l the pinch.  F i n a l l y , on June 7, the P r i v y  Council took the long-overdue step of making I r i s h money of equal value with E n g l i s h money,^ but i t s d a l l y i n g had been quite unnecessary and had increased E n g l i s h unpopularity.  However, no blame for the s i t u a t i o n should be l a i d on  C r o f t , who had recognized the problem e a r l y and urged s o l u t i o n s many.times. The I r i s h coinage problem cannot be treated independently from the  25  E n g l i s h coinage problem, although conditions were undoubtedly worse i n Ireland than i n E n g l a n d . ^  The process of debasement had begun under the d i r e c t i o n of  Cardinal Wolsey, i n 1526, and had continued throughout Henry VIII's reign.  As  a r e s u l t of Wolsey s and l a t e r measures, a f t e r the contemporary gold coins and 1  good s i l v e r coins of an e a r l i e r date had been withdrawn by hoarders,, the baseness of coins l e f t i n c i r c u l a t i o n contributed to a sharp r i s e i n p r i c e s . Edward VI's c o u n c i l l o r s continued to s t r i k e base currency from Henry VIII's d i e s , but, by 1551, reform of the coinage, prompted by increasing evidences of discontent, had begun.  However, the e f f o r t s of Northumberland and Gresham,  his f i n a n c i a l adviser, were unsuccessful, p r i n c i p a l l y because bad money continued to drive out good, the proportion of improved coins i n c i r c u l a t i o n being very small compared to the mass of debased coins s t i l l current.  As J . D.  Mackie s t a t e s , "Only the complete demonetization of the base issues could e f f e c t a true r e h a b i l i t a t i o n of the coinage, and t h i s was not f i n a l l y achieved 49 u n t i l the r e i g n of E l i z a b e t h . "  However, Northumberland's attempts at mone-  tary reform had had some e f f e c t , and might have been even more s u c c e s s f u l , as A. E. Feavearyear suggests, i f he had had time to complete the plans he had begun.^  The problem of the coinage i n Ireland was i n e x t r i c a b l y linked with  that i n England, and any hopes of reform i n the I r i s h s i t u a t i o n were f u t i l e u n t i l the problem had been solved i n England. Although there had been few uprisings i n Ireland i n 1551, t h e i r absence was only r e l a t i v e and temporary.  51  Within the Pale i t was possible to keep  f a i r l y stable government, but throughout the r e s t of the i s l a n d t h i s was impossible.  I t would have required an enormous number of.troops stationed  throughout the country to have kept order by force, and t h i s the Council was neither w i l l i n g , nor able to a f f o r d , to do.  U l s t e r was the most turbulent  26  part of the country, and was kept sp, by constant incursions of Scots, who aided the native c h i e f t a i n s against E n g l i s h troops or I r i s h farmers who were under E n g l i s h p r o t e c t i o n . I r i s h hatred f o r the E n g l i s h was fanned by l o o t ing which p e r i o d i c a l l y broke out, even though i t had been forbidden by successive Lord Deputies.  At the beginning of 1552 the great church at Kieran  had been thoroughly looted, not as a r e p r i s a l , but presumably on.the i n i t i a t i v e of the c h r o n i c a l l y unpaid s o l d i e r s . There was not l e f t , moreover, a b e l l , small or large, an image, or an a l t a r , or a book, or a gem, or even glass i n a window, from the w a l l of the church out, which was not c a r r i e d o f f . The s o l d i e r s ' l o o t i n g , combined w i t h the attempted enforcement of unwanted r e l i g i o u s changes, and an unstable currency acted on a w i l d and n a t u r a l l y r e b e l l i o u s people to ensure that u p r i s i n g s would occur c o n s t a n t l y . In 1552 the t r o u b l e , as u s u a l , took place i n U l s t e r .  Croft himself led  the E n g l i s h troops into U l s t e r against the I r i s h , commanded by Hugh O ' N e i l l , and the Scots.  A preliminary party of E n g l i s h troops was defeated, and even  though C r o f t managed to reach B e l f a s t and to erect a f o r t i f i c a t i o n there, h i s v i c t o r y was hollow.  As the Chronicle s t a t e s , "... they gained no v i c t o r y ,  and obtained no hostages or s p o i l s ;  and t h e i r s p i r i t s , were g r e a t l y damped  53 on t h i s occasion."  Although O'Neill's son, i n a t y p i c a l l y complex man-  oeuvre, decided to help C r o f t , he was, i n t u r n , attacked by one of h i s k i n s men at night and thoroughly routed. accomplished nothing.  Croft was forced to r e t r e a t south, having  Although he made another foray into U l s t e r i n the Autumn,  the r e s u l t s of t h i s expedition were even more disheartening for him: ... he effected nothing, except that he destroyed c o r n - f i e l d s . A f t e r having l o s t a great part of h i s people, he returned w i t h out submission or peace.  27  I t i s d i f f i c u l t to decide how C r o f t could have managed any b e t t e r . The best course would probably have been to have l e f t w e l l enough alone, stopping i n cursions i n t o the Pale and against E n g l i s h troops wherever p o s s i b l e , and hoping that the s i t u a t i o n would gradually improve i n time.  This might have taken  many years, but conditions were already better i n most of Ireland than they had been f i f t y years p r e v i o u s l y , and might have changed for the better i n U l s t e r too, p a r t i c u l a r l y , when the S c o t t i s h problem was overcome. As i t was, Croft had to f i g h t against what amounted to g u e r i l l a warfare, often c a r r i e d on at n i g h t , and had to attempt to s e t t l e s o l d i e r s i n a c o m p l e t e l y a l i e n t e r r i t o r y , w i t h not enough money or troops to do a r e a l l y e f f e c t i v e job.  He can-  not be blamed f o r f a i l i n g to subdue U l s t e r , but h i s expedition into the north was i l l - a d v i s e d and demonstrated the need for a complete r e - t h i n k i n g of the I r i s h problem. Probably because of the f a i l u r e of Croft's expeditions into U l s t e r , on November 6, 1552, he was given leave to return to E n g l a n d ,  55  presumably so he  could report d i r e c t l y to the Council about the general state of a f f a i r s i n Ireland.  There had been other complaints raised against C r o f t , i n c l u d i n g one  made i n J u l y by the E a r l of Tyrone, who had been arrested by C r o f t , and who asked that a commission be sent from England to hear the accusations made against him. ^ 5  A l s o , the King's p r o f i t s accruing from mining leases granted  i n Ireland had been n e g l i g i b l e , t h i s on C r o f t .  5 7  and Northumberland may have l a i d blame for  Whatever the reason, h i s r e c a l l i n d i c a t e s d i s s a t i s f a c t i o n with  his s e r v i c e s and, even though he did not eventually leave h i s post i n Ireland u n t i l e a r l y i n 1553, the events of 1552 marked h i s downfall.  I n May of 1553,  the King wrote to Tyrone that he should make contact with S i r Anthony S t . Leger, "... whom he purposes to send presently into Ireland as Lord Deputy,"  58  28  and.on the t w e l f t h of the month, Croft received a payment of one thousand 59 pounds, probably to soften the blow of being deprived of h i s p o s i t i o n . Even i f C r o f t had not been able to solve a l l the problems i n I r e l a n d , he had made a good attempt at providing an e f f i c i e n t government, and  had  shown himself sympathetic to the I r i s h i n such matters as hardening the currency and l i s t e n i n g to t h e i r point-of-view  regarding Church reform.  Some  years l a t e r , Campion, w r i t i n g i n h i s H i s t o r y of I r e l a n d , b r i e f l y recorded of Croft's two years i n o f f i c e : Upon Saintleger came S i r James Croftes, of whose bounty and honourable dealing towards them, they yeald at t h i s day a generall good report.^0 In f a c t , i t i s possible that Northumberland f e l t Croft had been too and that h i s proposals had been too c o s t l y for England.  zealous,  Croft had made l i t t l e  headway i n subduing the U l s t e r c h i e f t a i n s , but neither had St. Leger, who ceded him and was named to succeed him.  pre-  The reappointment of St. Leger sug-  gests that the attempt to solve the problem of Ireland by m i l i t a r y means (which were expensive) had f a i l e d , and that a return to a " p o l i t i c a l " deputyship was  c a l l e d f o r . At any r a t e , C r o f t could s t i l l count on i n f l u e n t i a l  friends on the Council, among them C e c i l , who Croft b e f o r e , ^  1  and Northumberland.  had shown himself u s e f u l to  Although he had been responsible for  Croft's d i s m i s s a l from the post of Lord Deputy of I r e l a n d , Northumberland gave him another job, which, while not having the prestige o f - h i s former p o s i t i o n , would have given Croft a reasonable income. brother of Northumberland, were both attached  Croft and S i r Andrew Dudley,  to S i r Edward Warner, Captain of  the Tower i n London, positions which would have been p r i n c i p a l l y honorary, but which j u s t i f i e d the statement that Croft had "...  placed himself i n the service  29  of the Duke of Northumberland."  This statement, made by a Spaniard working  for the Emperor, was contained i n a l e t t e r which also foreshadowed, although unknowingly, Croft's f a l l from even t h i s p o s i t i o n .  The young King was already  extremely i l l and i n danger of death, and i t was to be only two months a f t e r t h i s l e t t e r was w r i t t e n , on J u l y 6, that Edward was to d i e . Although Croft had been chosen to replace S t . Leger because Northumberland intended to pursue a " m i l i t a r y " p o l i c y , h i s p o s i t i o n depended on h i s keeping i n Northumberland's good graces. Croft had accepted Northumberland's plans for church reform, which were part of h i s p o l i c y of c r e a t i n g a party which would be h o s t i l e to Mary when she came to the throne, but i t does not seem l i k e l y that C r o f t was a member of the inner group which surrounded Northumberland.  I t i s true that he had been granted a p r o f i t a b l e , but v i r t u -  a l l y meaningless, p o s i t i o n i n the Tower, but the events which followed the death of Edward VI were to show that Croft could not l e g i t i m a t e l y be termed a pawn of the Duke of Northumberland.  30  CHAPTER I I I WYATT S 1  REBELLION  AND  ITS AFTERMATH  (1553-1558)  By the beginning of 1553 rumours of Edward's extremely i l l health were c i r c u l a t i n g , and h i s death on J u l y 6, at the age o f f i f t e e n , caught nobody by surprise.  However, i t made an enormous d i f f e r e n c e to Northumberland, and to  a l l those who owed t h e i r positions e n t i r e l y to h i s patronage.  Northumber-  land's c h i e f adherent had probably been Edward, and i t i s not an exaggeration to s t a t e , as G. R. E l t o n does, that "... the whole English Reformation depended on the l i f e of Edward V I . "  1  Under the terms of Henry VIII's w i l l , Mary  would succeed to the throne, and her accession would bring a sudden h a l t to the Reformation i n England, and to the career of Northumberland, the c h i e f proponent of Protestantism.  R e a l i z a t i o n of these facts prompted Northumber-  land to attempt to place Lady Jane Grey on the throne, an abortive plan which, i n two weeks, was completely broken. Mary was l e f t triumphantly i n power with a completely mistaken impression o f the popularity of her Catholic p o s i t i o n rather than her l e g i t i m a t e p o s i t i o n as Queen by r i g h t of being the daughter of Henry V I I I . James Croft had, as i t were, backed the wrong horse.  There i s no doubt  that he had reached positions of power because he had been an adherent of Northumberland, and of Northumberland's protestant p o l i c i e s .  Whatever h i s  i n t r i n s i c value as a s o l d i e r or administrator, he was not important or b r i l l i a n t enough that Northumberland could not have done without him.  Even i f he  had not been an ardent protestant, and h i s c o n c i l i a t o r y attempts i n Ireland show that he was at l e a s t sympathetic to the C a t h o l i c s , he would have had no chances of advancement i f he had not accepted wholeheartedly the Reformation  31  p o l i c i e s l a i d down by Northumberland.  Therefore, Croft could not expect any  favours to be shown to him on the accession of an avowedly C a t h o l i c monarch. His best p o l i c y would probably have been to r e t i r e d i s c r e e t l y to the family estates i n Herefordshire, and wait to see j u s t how f a r Mary intended to take r e p r i s a l s against those, such as himself, who had helped to b r i n g about the r e l i g i o u s changes of the past few years.  This, however, Croft was u n w i l l i n g  to do, and the f i v e years of Mary's r e i g n were to see him involved i n a p l o t against the Queen, imprisoned, f i n e d , and relegated to f i n d i n g an income by accepting money from C a t h o l i c Spain. As a supporter of Northumberland, Croft was extremely fortunate that he was neither p a r t i c u l a r l y i n f l u e n t i a l nor, as events turned out, p a r t i c u l a r l y . favoured by the Regent.  The day a f t e r Edward's death, Northumberland, r e a l i z -  ing that immediate a c t i o n was necessary, r e t i r e d to the Tower w i t h his supporters and proceeded to barricade i t and to strengthen i t w i t h arms and ammunition.  C r o f t , as a constable of the Tower, and one placed there only a  few months e a r l i e r by Northumberland himself, might have been expected to stay as a member of Northumberland's r e b e l l i o u s band, but t h i s i s not what happened. As soon as Northumberland's men had taken the Tower, "...  they discharged s i r  James Croft of the constabullshype of the Towre, and ther thay put [ i n the -i  said l o r d j ( s i c ) Admerall, and toke ys othe and charge of the Towre  "  ...."  2  I t i s possible that Croft had requested the discharge himself, r e a l i z i n g the f o l l y of Northumberland's ambitions, or that Northumberland r e a l i z e d Croft could be of no use, and that a more confirmed adherent, namely C l i n t o n , the Lord Admiral, would make a more trustworthy Constable.  This l a t t e r course i s  more l i k e l y , because, as T y t l e r s t a t e s , Northumberland "... dreaded i n t r i g u e , 3 aware that he had heads as c r a f t y as h i s own to deal w i t h . "  Whether one r e -  32  gards Croft's d i s m i s s a l as of h i s own  i n i t i a t i v e or because Northumberland  did not consider him important or f a i t h f u l enough, he was  extremely fortunate  to be free from the Tower and Northumberland's patronage, and not to be i n volved i n any way with the preparations  to put Lady Jane Grey on the throne.  By the end of J u l y , the reign of the Nine Days Queen was over, Northumberland and h i s cohorts were imprisoned, and Mary was the throne and the country.  f i r m l y i n c o n t r o l of  S i r James was by no means out of suspicion, nor  was he l i k e l y to receive any favours from Queen Mary, having been a l l i e d with Northumberland for too long.  Nevertheless,  on J u l y 23, C r o f t , with several  other protestant noblemen and knights, was o f f i c i a l l y given a pardon by Mary: ... the l o r d a d m i r a l l , and the lords Greye, G a r r e t t , Wormon, and the l o r d Fitzwarren, s i r Henry Sidney, and s i r James C r o f f t s , with divers others, have already t h e i r pardon graunted them.^ Croft had not, apparently,  taken part i n the attempt to replace Mary, but  several of the lords named had been a c t i v e p a r t i c i p a n t s .  They had a l s o , how-  ever, been quick to desert Northumberland, whose fears of i n t r i g u e had been w e l l founded, when i t became obvious that his was  a l o s t cause.  As e a r l y as  J u l y 19, a delegation of some of Northumberland's leading supporters "...  had  been persuaded that the Lady Mary was r i g h t f u l Queen, and had decided to proclaim her as such t h i s very day  Their support was,  of course, a matter  of necessity, considering Northumberland's s t e a d i l y waning p o p u l a r i t y , and t h e i r d e c i s i o n to implore the Queen's foragiveness ture.  was  another prudent ges-  Mary r e a l i z e d that she could not, a f f o r d to a l i e n a t e the country by  im-  prisoning or decapitating a l l her erstwhile enemies, and she knew she needed t h e i r support, however h y p o c r i t i c a l , during the c r u c i a l early period of her  33  reign.  Her d e c i s i o n , therefore, to pardon such men as Grey i s understandable,  considering the circumstances, and. C r o f t , being only a minor and unimportant f i g u r e , featured i n the large number of pardons handed out on July 23. Mary's personal claim to the throne had been overwhelmingly endorsed, but i t was not apparent to Mary that popular support d i d not mean an eagerness to refute a l l that had taken place i n the English Reformation.  Protestants  would not w i l l i n g l y surrender the achievements of the previous twenty years, and yet i t appeared obvious, considering Mary's avowedly Catholic tendencies, that r e l i g i o u s s t r i f e was i n e v i t a b l e .  Both France and Spain feared the ambi-  tions of the other i n England, and Renard, the Spanish ambassador, urged the Emperor to consolidate h i s p o s i t i o n .  N o a i l l e s , Renard's French counterpart,  feared an a l l i a n c e of England and Spain, and had even offered a i d to Northumberland, although i t had never m a t e r i a l i z e d .  Although both Renard and  N o a i l l e s over-emphasized the precariousness of Mary's p o s i t i o n , there was a r e a l danger, as events were soon to show. Mary, who had been accustomed to look to her Spanish k i n f o l k f o r advice, began to do so again, and the fears which many i n England had of a marriage a l l i a n c e between England and Catholic Spain began to seem w e l l founded.  This background to the events which were  to occur i n e a r l y 1554 explains some of the reasons why a group of discontented Protestants, i n c l u d i n g James C r o f t , were to attempt an u p r i s i n g against a monarch who had been greeted with genuine f e e l i n g s of approval only a few months e a r l i e r .  7  The rumours which had been c i r c u l a t i n g were confirmed on January 15, 1554, when i t was o f f i c i a l l y announced that Mary was to marry P h i l i p of Spain. Although Mary indicated that she r e a l i z e d the match might be unpopular, she  34  t r i e d to a l l a y fears that England would be at a l l dominated by the Spanish by adding that "...  the s a i d Prince was not to meddle with the public a f f a i r s of  the s t a t e , but the Queen's great Council of the realm, as before was  accus-  9  tomed."  Although some of Mary's C o u n c i l , i n c l u d i n g Paget, approved of the  match, there were others, among them Gardiner, the Chancellor, who had  tried  to persuade Mary to marry Edward Courtenay, newly created E a r l of Devon. Courtenay had the primary advantage of being E n g l i s h , and he was also of r o y a l blood and had not made any important enemies. ^ 1  To many Englishmen,  who had a genuine and well-based fear of a union between the Spanish and English r o y a l houses, almost anyone other than P h i l i p would have been acceptable, and Courtenay was loudly championed throughout the country.  The  announcement of January 15, however, meant that a l l hopes of a v e r t i n g the dreaded Spanish marriage by arranging, a l i a i s o n between Mary and Courtenay were l o s t .  The only course which now seemed open to many was a show of f o r c e ,  and w i t h i n ten days of the announcement, reports of the beginnings of a r e b e l l i o n were being heard throughout London. The u p r i s i n g was not a spur-of-the-moment idea, and even though i t was u l t i m a t e l y to f a i l , plans had apparently been l a i d at l e a s t a month p r e v i o u s l y , i n the event, that the Spanish marriage should m a t e r i a l i z e .  The c o n s p i r a t o r s ,  according to Loades, who c i t e s a l a t e r indictment, included C r o f t , S i r Peter Carew, S i r Nicholas Arnold, S i r W i l l i a m P i c k e r i n g , W i l l i a m Winter, S i r Edward Rogers, S i r Thomas Wyatt, S i r George Harper, W i l l i a m Thomas, S i r Edward Warner, and S i r Nicholas Throckmorton.''"''" They were a l l men who had held reasonably important p o s i t i o n s under Edward, who stood to gain nothing by the accession of Mary, and who probably had a genuine fear of an E n g l i s h a l l i a n c e w i t h Spain. Although the connection i s tenuous, C r o f t and the other conspirators were  35  probably w e l l known to one another .. Several of them, i n c l u d i n g P i c k e r i n g , u  12 Wyatt, Throckmorton, and Carew, had served i n France during the 1540's,  and  Throckmorton had also accompanied Protector Somerset to Scotland i n 1547, and 13 had taken part i n the B a t t l e of Musselburgh, as had C r o f t .  Two of the con-  s p i r a t o r s , S i r Nicholas Arnold and W i l l i a m Thomas, were probably acquainted with C r o f t from t h e i r p o s i t i o n s i n the area of England and Wales near Herefordshire.  In 1551, Arnold was l i s t e d with Croft as being a member of the 14  Council i n the Marches of Wales. man,  Thomas, as h i s name suggests, was a Welsh-  and as Clerk of the P r i v y Council secured a number of valuable grants.  In December, 1551, he obtained a patent f o r l i f e "... of a t o l l of a l l c a t t l e , merchandise,  and other customs and subsidies, w i t h i n the towns of Prestend  [Presteigne] , Beelth [Builth] , and E l v e l [ ?] , i n the Marches of Wales: . . . and an annuity of 40 marks of the fee-farm of the c i t y of Hereford Presteigne and B u i l t h , though i n Wales, are very close to C r o f t C a s t l e , and contact between C r o f t and Thomas was quite l i k e l y .  In a d d i t i o n to these con-  t a c t s , C r o f t had served under S i r Edward Warner, Lord Cobham's son-in-law, who 16 was Lieutenant of the Tower from October, 1552, to J u l y 28, 1553,  during  much of which time C r o f t , together w i t h S i r Andrew Dudley, had been Deputy Lieutenant.  Loades states that C r o f t also knew the Duke of S u f f o l k , who  joined the conspirators l a t e i n December,''' by which time plans for the up7  r i s i n g must have been w e l l l a i d . The project of these men was given impetus by the i n t e r e s t shown by N o a i l l e s , the French ambassador, who feared the marriage plans almost as i n t e n t l y as the m a j o r i t y of Englishmen d i d . Obviously, a Spanish-English m i l i tary a l l i a n c e would pose a f a r greater threat to French i n t e r e s t s than Spain by h e r s e l f .  N o a i l l e s had already heard, i n December, about plans f o r an  36  uprising, and had been'informed on the 23rd. that Croft " . . . had plans for stirring up "infinite troubles" in England and Ireland and wished to enter 18 the French King's service."  Croft later admitted that there was an under 19  standing between the rebels and Noailles,  and Renard, whose figures should  be regarded with some suspicion even i f he is correct in the broad outlines, reported to Prince Philip that: The King of France had promised help in troops and money, and had already distributed some 10,000 to 12,000 crowns to p r i vate individuals.20 Henry II, however, apparently had doubts as to the effectiveness of the English conspirators, and the help which he offered eventually came too late. Success on the part of the conspirators would have been in the interests of. France, and Croft and his associates appear to have counted on French support. It is unlikely that they would have been as sure of themselves in January i f they had realized that unconditional aid from France would not necessarily be forthcoming. When the conspirators met at the beginning of December, they were faced with the immediate problem of deciding on an objective.  It was one thing to  begin a revolution which would force Mary off the throne, but a totally different problem to decide what would happen to her when they had succeeded, and who would replace her.  Several accounts indicate that plans had been con-  sidered to assassinate Mary, and Renard reported that the French had approached Croft with the suggestion " . . . to hinder the marriage of his Highness and the Queen, to raise Elizabeth to the crown, to marry her to Courtenay, and put the 22 Queen to death . . . ."  However, a contemporary account mentions that the idea  of assassinating Mary was broached by William Thomas, who was repulsed by both  37  Croft and Wyatt when he suggested the idea:. ... Nicholas Arnolde . . . t o l d yt to maister Croftes, who also tolde i t to maister Wyat; and they bothe detesting the horryblenes of the cryme, the said Wyate ware, under his long gowne, a great waster [cudgel] . . . t o beat the said William Thomas w i t h , that he wolde have l e f t e him for dedd.23 2, Loades mentions that leadership, at the end of December, had passed to C r o f t , but, while there are numerous i n d i c a t i o n s of h i s playing a leading r o l e , there i s no suggestion that he led the movement at any time. posed, as was  I f Mary was  to be  de-  the only a l t e r n a t i v e to assassination, then E l i z a b e t h would have  to be chosen to succeed her, and the suggestion which Renard indicated the French had put f o r t h - - t h a t E l i z a b e t h should marry Courtenay--was part of the plan adopted by the c o n s p i r a t o r s . As Mary was  to discover l a t e r , E l i z a b e t h was  extremely cautious  regarding  any w r i t t e n commitment, and there are no papers i n her w r i t i n g , or signed her, which i n d i c a t e that she was ever, i t was  How-  important that the French should be convinced that E l i z a b e t h was  i n the conspirators' confidence, beth was  i n any way associated w i t h the p l o t .  by  and Croft indicated to N o a i l l e s that E l i z a -  f u l l y aware of the plans being made. N o a i l l e s wrote i n January that: ... she sees the f i n e claim she has to the crown and the expect a t i o n she has of gaining i t , e s p e c i a l l y i f the matters undertaken f o r her come to a successful e n d . "  C r o f t may  have been indulging, as Harbison suggests, i n w i s h f u l t h i n k i n g , but  he apparently managed to persuade the French that the conspiracy was worthy of support, because N o a i l l e s l a t e r reported that " I s h a l l continue to encour26 age Croft and h i s companions i n t h i s good i n t e n t i o n . "  With the understand-  ing that France would support the r e b e l l i o n , and that E l i z a b e t h approved  38  t a c i t l y of t h e i r plans, the conspirators were prepared to act on t h e i r plans as soon as the announcement of the Spanish marriage was made on January 15. L i t t l e more than a week l a t e r , Wyatt's R e b e l l i o n was set i n motion. Attachment of Wyatt's name to the r e b e l l i o n i s somewhat misleading, cons i d e r i n g the f a c t s leading up to the actual outbreak of the r e b e l l i o n i n January.  There i s nothing to i n d i c a t e that, at t h i s time, Wyatt was any more  than merely a c o n s p i r a t o r , and although various people have been suggested as leader, i n c l u d i n g Thomas and C r o f t , Wyatt was probably simply one of many. The reason that h i s name has been attached to the r e b e l l i o n i s t h a t , of the four u p r i s i n g s which were planned, the one i n Kent under h i s leadership was the only one which served as a threat of any sort to the Queen, and the only one which appeared to have even the shadow of a chance of succeeding.  For  his comparative success, Wyatt was to f o r f e i t h i s l i f e , but the l i v e s of most of h i s c o - p l o t t e r s , who were equally as much to blame for the concept of the conspiracy as he was, were to be spared because of the last-minute thoughts they had and the d i l a t o r y way i n which they c a r r i e d out t h e i r part of the scheme. I t had been decided i n December that the projected u p r i s i n g would occur 27 simultaneously i n four areas, and would then converge on London.  Croft  would r a i s e a force i n Herefordshire, Wyatt would see to Kent, Carew and Courtenay to Devon, and the Duke of S u f f o l k to L e i c e s t e r s h i r e .  Although the  Council had urged the population to accept announcement of the marriage "with 28 a l l humblenes and r e j o y c i n g , " a contemporary c h r o n i c l e r records that " ... allmost eche man was abashed, l o k i n g d a y l i e for worse mattiers to growe 29 shortly after."  Expectations were confirmed when word came, on January 21, 30 that Carew and others i n Devon had captured the c i t y and c a s t l e of Exeter,  39  and, on January 25, when i t was  learned i n London that various c a s t l e s i n Kent 31  had been captured by the r e b e l s .  Croft had probably l e f t London a few days  e a r l i e r , and i t was rumoured that "...  about t h i s time s i r James Croftes de32  parted to Walles, as yt i s thought to rayse h i s powre there."  Soon a f t e r -  wards, probably on January 30, reports were c i r c u l a t i n g that "ther was a 33 panye upp i n Hervodeshire," than unsubstantiated such a f o r c e .  com-  but t h i s , as i t turned out, was nothing more  gossip, even though i t had been Croft's purpose to r a i s e  The r e b e l l i o n , which had begun with confidence and some success,  was, however, doomed to f a i l u r e , and a few weeks a f t e r the reports of c a s t l e s being captured i n Devon and Kent, and forces being r a i s e d i n Herefordshire, the conspirators were a l l to be securely immured w i t h i n the Tower. The end of the conspiracy occurred w i t h i n a remarkably short time. Carew, 34 i n Devon, had already f l e d to Normandy on January 25, having found that he was unable to whip up a n t i - C a t h o l i c f e e l i n g , and that he was hampered by the d i l i g e n c e of l o c a l a u t h o r i t i e s and the f a i l u r e of the E a r l of Devon to declare 35 himself.  On January 26, the Duke of S u f f o l k had been declared a t r a i t o r (as 36 had Carew, Wyatt, and others) a f t e r he had f l e d to L e i c e s t e r s h i r e , where he 37 was captured on February 6,  a f t e r putting up a weak opposition.  Suffolk's  attempted i n s u r r e c t i o n had been minimal, but at l e a s t had more e f f e c t than Croft's.  As Loades s t a t e s : With the exception of the projected Herefordshire r i s i n g , whichnever m a t e r i a l i z e d at a l l , t h i s was the weakest stroke of the 38 conspiracy.  Croft was apparently arrested at Ludlow, i n Shropshire, on February 13, or, i f not arrested, was at l e a s t examined on h i s connection with Lord Thomas Grey, 39 one of S u f f o l k ' s brothers, about whom Croft denied any knowledge.  In s p i t e  40  of h i s d e n i a l , Croft must have known about Grey, who had f l e d towards Wales w i t h the i n t e n t i o n of escaping from there into France, and who would probably have stayed w i t h C r o f t on h i s way to the Welsh c o a s t . ^  As f o r Wyatt, he had 41  succeeded i n leading h i s Kentishmen, numbering approximately into Southwark, across the Thames from the Tower.  two thousand,  Having crossed the r i v e r  upstream on February 8, Wyatt and h i s men marched up F l e e t Street to Ludgate, where they were repulsed by Lord W i l l i a m Howard and forced to r e t r e a t to Temple Bar.  Wyatt decided to give himself up, and was brought down the Thames  to the Tower as a prisoner.  Two days l a t e r , S u f f o l k was i n the Tower,  soon a f t e r t h a t , C r o f t , too, was  imprisoned.  and  With the exception of Carew, who  had f l e d to France, the leaders of the proposed u p r i s i n g were now immured i n the Tower, the r e b e l l i o n having been a complete f a i l u r e .  Shortly after their  imprisonment, E l i z a b e t h joined them, suspicions of her involvement i n the conspiracy being reasonably w e l l founded, i f unproveable. I t i s not d i f f i c u l t to f i n d reasons for the f a i l u r e .  What we would to-  day term " l a c k of communications" must have hindered the e f f o r t immensely, but even more would lack of confidence.  The idea of r a i s i n g opposition i n four  parts of the country may have seemed a good idea, but four such i s o l a t e d movements would have been easier to suppress than a more coordinated u p r i s i n g i n one area.  As w e l l , Wyatt could not know, while he was waging h i s reasonably  successful struggle i n Kent, that Carew, i n the south-west, had already given up the f i g h t , and that C r o f t , on the Welsh border, had never begun h i s part of the conspiracy.  Native cautiousness on Croft's part may account for h i s hav-  ing l e f t Wyatt and the others i n the l u r c h , or he may have f e l t that h i s i n f l u ence i n Herefordshire was not strong enough that he could act d e c i s i v e l y .  It  i s true that h i s was an old family and that the area was scattered w i t h r e l a -  41  t i v e s , but i t was be considered  to be several decades before the Crofts could by any means  the leading family i n the county.  only one of the rebels who  However, Croft was not  the  could be f a u l t e d for i n d e c i s i o n at the l a s t moment,  and only Wyatt, i n Kent, put up any sort of a f i g h t whatsoever. The attempted r e b e l l i o n against Mary was  symptomatic of the discontent  f e l t by many throughout England, but the fact that i t had been suppressed i n so short a time indicated that popular f e e l i n g was not so strong that the country wished to plunge i t s e l f i n t o c i v i l war.  Mary could f e e l w e l l s a t i s -  f i e d that the r e b e l l i o n had been so i n e f f e c t i v e and s h o r t - l i v e d , and, because i t had not posed any great threat to her, she was  probably more l e n i e n t to  the conspirators than she would have been had they been more s u c c e s s f u l .  If  Mary had taken harsh, recriminatory a c t i o n , i t i s l i k e l y that she would have antagonized i n f l u e n t i a l people whose support she needed, and severe punishment of the conspirators would.not have made t h i s p o s s i b i l i t y worth w h i l e . However, once the r e b e l l i o n was over and the ringleaders s a f e l y locked i n s i d e the Tower, judgment was c a r r i e d out w i t h great speed.  In f a c t , several of  the leading c o n s p i r a t o r s , i n c l u d i n g Wyatt and Lord John Grey, had been arraigned even before Croft a r r i v e d at the Tower.  Wyatt had been t r i e d , and  condemned to death, on February 19 and Grey on the 20th, but Croft was  not  brought to the Tower from Shropshire u n t i l the 21st, accompanied by Lord Thomas G r e y . ^  Numerous of Wyatt's followers had been executed, and Renard  reported to the Emperor as e a r l y as February 17 that "..:  i n London execu-  tions have taken place i n twenty or t h i r t y d i f f e r e n t places, and one sees nothing but gibbets and hanged men."^  However, Mary had also pardoned a  large number of Kentishmen, and Machyn t e l l s of a group of them who forgiven by the Queen:  had been  42  ... the powr presonars knelyd down i n the myre, and ther the Quen('s) [ s i c ] grace lokyd owt over the gatt and gayff them a l l pardon, and thay cryd owt 'God save quen Mare'. ^ I t was a simple enough matter to forgive the ignorant peasants of Kent, but quite another to be as generous to the knights and peers of the realm who  had  led the u p r i s i n g . On February 23, s h o r t l y a f t e r Wyatt had been condemned to 47 d i e , the Duke of S u f f o l k was beheaded i n the Tower. 48 on the 17th and convicted of treason,  S u f f o l k had been t r i e d  and, as the father of Lady Jane Grey  as w e l l as an outspoken protestant and leading c o n s p i r a t o r , had no hope of being spared the death penalty.  Neither, of course, had Wyatt, but with the  exception of these two, and of S u f f o l k ' s brothers, the r e s t of the conspirators were to be l e t o f f l i g h t l y . The p a r t i c i p a t i o n of E l i z a b e t h i n the conspiracy, i f any, i s impossible to prove, as she never committed h e r s e l f i n w r i t i n g . considered e s s e n t i a l i n the p l o t , as a reassurance the conspirators had hoped to get help.  However, she had been  to the French, from whom  E l i z a b e t h was  l i v i n g at Ashridge,  some twenty-seven miles from London, and i t i s probable that she had been v i s i t e d by C r o f t while he was on h i s way  to Herefordshire i n mid-January.  Croft had intimated that he had conferred w i t h E l i z a b e t h about the projected conspiracy l a t e i n December, when he wished to assure N o a i l l e s of her  support,  and E l i z a b e t h l a t e r showed that she was acquainted w i t h him, when they were both imprisoned i n the Tower. At that time, on being questioned whether or not there had been t a l k at Ashridge between her and Croft about moving from there to Donnington C a s t l e , she r e p l i e d : ... as member Acroft Lords,  concerning my going unto Dunnington Master Hobby and mine O f f i c e r s , and had such t a l k e , but what i s that to but that I may goe to my own houses  C a s t l e , I doe r e you s i r James the purpose, my at a l l t i m e s . ^  43  In s p i t e of her p r o t e s t a t i o n s , i t would appear l i k e l y that such a t a l k took place.  Mary had r e a l i z e d that any u p r i s i n g could w e l l be centred around her  s i s t e r , and had requested, as e a r l y as January 26, as soon as the  conspiracy  had been confirmed, that E l i z a b e t h leave Ashridge and come to the Court.  Mary  mentioned i n the l e t t e r that " c e r t a i n e v i l disposed persons" had r e c e n t l y "spread divers lewd and untrue rumours,"^ but made i t q u i t e c l e a r that E l i z a beth was  to come to London without delay.  Elizabeth's r e p l y , that she  was  s i c k and could not t r a v e l , seems a patent falsehood, and i t i s not s u r p r i s i n g on Mary's part that she had her s i s t e r f o r c i b l y c a r r i e d to Court, and from there to the Tower.  However, Elizabeth's imprisonment was only for a short  period, because, as Mary might have guessed, nothing d i r e c t l y i n c r i m i n a t i n g could be found to prove her involvement i n the r e b e l l i o n . Croft was that Wyatt was  p a r t i c u l a r l y fortunate i n escaping the axe, because i t appears i m p l i c a t i n g him deeply i n the conspiracy.  been condemned to death, he was  Although Wyatt had  probably being tortured to t e l l everything  he  knew. At l e a s t , i t i s recorded that the Chancellor and other C o u n c i l l o r s had "...  laboured  beth,"  5 1  to make S i r Thomas Wiat confess concerning the Lady E l i z a -  and that Wyatt had s a i d that " S i r James Croft knows more of the 52  matter."  As indicated above, Croft probably did know a good deal about the  negotiations which had taken place with E l i z a b e t h .  L a t e r , i n March, he  was  examined as a witness against E l i z a b e t h , and protested that: ... I take God to record before a l l your honors I doo not know anie thing of that crime that you have l a i d to my charge, and w i l l therupon take my death, i f I should be driven to so s t r i c t a triall. 5 5  His fervour may have convinced h i s examiners that he was speaking the t r u t h ;  44  at l e a s t , he d i d escape the death penalty.  His reluctance to speak at the  time may have been that he r e a l i z e d that a confession would be f a t a l not only to E l i z a b e t h but to himself, but perhaps one should grant him the b e n e f i t of the doubt and see h i s statement as one of p a r t i c u l a r l o y a l t y to E l i z a b e t h . At any r a t e , h i s s i l e n c e must have paid dividends when E l i z a b e t h came to the throne. Wyatt cannot be blamed for attempting to save h i s neck, but any such e f f o r t s were useless .  No amount of information he could give would help him,  nor would any e f f o r t s to get i n f l u e n t i a l people to intervene on h i s behalf. According to Renard, both Wyatt and Groft were making f r a n t i c e f f o r t s to speak to Gardiner, the Chancellor, whom Renard feared "...  out of s p i t e ,  may  54 behave i n a manner contrary to the Queen's hopes." opposed the Spanish match, i t was for  Even i f Gardiner  had  f u t i l e to hope that he would r i s k h i s neck  the sake of the r e b e l s , and Wyatt and Croft were simply c l u t c h i n g at  straws.  On A p r i l 11, a f t e r an imprisonment of t h i r t y - f o u r days, Wyatt was  beheaded on Tower H i l l and h i s body q u a r t e r e d . zens "...  55  As an example to the c i t i -  h i s quarters were set up i n divers places, and h i s head set upon 56  the gallowes on Hay H i l l . . .."  S i x days l a t e r , Croft and three other rebels  were taken to the Guild H a l l , but, of the four, only Throckmorton was arraigned, and he, a f t e r defending himself w i t h s p i r i t , was acquitted by the j u r y .  5 7  This a c q u i t t a l was an unexpected, and unwelcome, s u r p r i s e to  the Council, who ordered the jurors to the Star Chamber, where some were 58 fined and others sent to F l e e t p r i s o n . No doubt the next j u r y was given e x p l i c i t orders not to show any such o r i g i n a l i t y as had occurred at Throck59 morton's t r i a l , but when i t met, on A p r i l 29th,  four jurors apparently r e -  fused to convict C r o f t , and had to be replaced with four men more amenable.^ A f t e r these setbacks, the expected v e r d i c t was  passed:  45  ... S i r James C r o f t , knight, was arrayned i n the G u i l d h a l l of treason, and there by a j u r i e of the c i t i z e n s of London condemned and had judgment of death.61 Croft's t r i a l , although nothing i s recorded of i t except the bare f a c t s , i s i n t e r e s t i n g i n that i t shows how wish of the Council.  f a r jurors were w i l l i n g to oppose the stated  The fact that four men wished to acquit him, even though  they would be punished f o r t h e i r disobedience,  shows not that they believed  Croft innocent of being involved i n the conspiracy, but that he was not g u i l t y of treason.  They obviously sympathized with h i s fear of Spanish domination,  and believed that h i s involvement was  f o r the good of the nation.  Even though C r o f t had been sentenced to death, for some reason he not executed.  was  Obviously, h i s death would not increase Mary's p o p u l a r i t y , but  Mary could not a f f o r d to allow " t r a i t o r s " to go s c o t - f r e e .  An i n t e r e s t i n g  s i t u a t i o n had been reported by Renard on March 22, which might explain Croft's escape.  The Council, i n Gardiner's  absence, had met  to inform the Queen that  they believed the rebels to have been " c r u e l l y punished" already, and  that  they did not think i t good for the Queen to f o l l o w the opinion of "bloodt h i r s t y men,"  by whom they meant Gardiner.  Gardiner had c e r t a i n l y opposed  the Spanish match, and by t h i s had given the conspirators hope of a mild sentence, but he was  also a l o y a l servant of the Queen and would have taken  strong measures against Croft and the others had Mary desired i t .  The Coun-  c i l f u r t h e r urged Mary to pardon Suffolk's brothers, and stated that  "...  the Council would not allow the other prisoners i n the Tower to be executed."^ Renard i s a somewhat u n r e l i a b l e source of information, but i t i s true that there was  a s p l i t i n the C o u n c i l , that Gardiner was  absent at the time,  that 'the r e b e l s , excluding S u f f o l k ' s brothers, were.eventually  pardoned.  and  46  Mary might perhaps have agreed to the Council's suggestion, but i n s i s t e d on a form of t r i a l taking place.  Once Croft and the others had been sentenced to  death i t would appear that the Queen's w i l l had triumphed, and a d i s c r e e t pardon and release some years l a t e r would pass v i r t u a l l y unnoticed. Whether or not the conversation occurred as Renard reported i t , events did  f o l l o w the pattern indicated above.  A f t e r the t r i a l Croft was taken back  to the Tower, where he remained f o r the remainder of 1554, being there at the same time as E l i z a b e t h .  Then, on January 18, 1555, he and other prisoners,  i n c l u d i n g S i r Nicholas Throckmorton, who had apparently been imprisoned i n s p i t e of h i s a c q u i t t a l by the j u r y , were suddenly released, a f t e r spending less than a year i n the Tower.  63  Richard Baker, i n h i s c h r o n i c l e ,  6^t  suggested  that the release of the prisoners occurred i n January " i n hope of the Joy that was e x p e c t e d "  65  of Mary being delivered of a c h i l d .  Mary's pregnancy,' as i t  turned out, was a f a l s e one, but i t i s possible that she would wish to express her thankfulness i n January, at which time she believed h e r s e l f three months pregnant, by pardoning the conspirators.  I t would, at l e a s t , have been a con-  venient excuse, and a way of r i d d i n g h e r s e l f of an embarrassing reminder of the  rebellion. Croft's release on January 18 l e f t him f r e e , but hardly i n an enviable  position.  Never r i c h at the best.of times, the f i n e he incurred of two hun66  dred pounds  must have put a heavy s t r a i n on h i s finances, even though he  was fortunate not to have to pay the two thousand pounds demanded of S i r Nicholas Throckmorton.  Croft's pardon acquitted him of treason, and included  "... remission of a l l pains, e t c . , incurred t h e r e b y , "  67  but, i n s p i t e of t h i s ,  he appears to have suffered from loss of revenue during Mary's r e i g n .  On  47  August 6, 1554, for example, one John Wall was named keeper of a wood i n Heref o r d s h i r e and Shropshire, which p o s i t i o n had been f o r f e i t e d by C r o f t when he had been sentenced, together with "... a l l due and accustomed fees and 68 profits."  Having burned h i s fingers once, Croft would have had no wish to  be involved i n any more c o n s p i r a c i e s , as Throckmorton apparently was  the  f o l l o w i n g year, when one of h i s kinsmen attempted to rob the Exchequeur "to 69 maintain war against the Queene."  For the next few years, although there  i s no d i r e c t evidence, C r o f t probably s e t t l e d down i n Herefordshire, u n t i l he was next c a l l e d upon i n mid-1557. By 1557, the c h i e f disadvantage of the Spanish match became apparent when Mary f e l t i t her duty to provide m i l i t a r y assistance to Spain i n i t s conf l i c t with France.  Although the Council disapproved, war was declared against  France i n June, 1557, and dragged on into 1558, arousing nothing but v i o l e n t d i s l i k e against Mary throughout E n g l a n d . ^  Because, of the war i n France, and  because of incessant warfare on the S c o t t i s h borders at the same time, Mary needed a l l the m i l i t a r y experts she could muster.  In June, various captains  were appointed for duty i n France, among them S i r Peter Carew, an avowed protestant who had been involved i n the conspiracy three years p r e v i o u s l y .  The  captains a l s o included "... other nobles, knights, and gentlemen of r i g h t approved v a l i a n c i e : although diverse of them were supected [ s i c ] to be protestants ."^  England i t s e l f was remarkably free of r e b e l l i o n s , and f o r t h i s  reason i t was probably thought safe to make use of those who had been involved i n former r i s i n g s , and whose expertise the government could now use.  On J u l y  11, the C o u n c i l , i n a l e t t e r to the E a r l of Shrewesbury, Lord President of the North, ordered S i r James C r o f t to go to Berwick, "...  to thende he might  use h i s advise and s e r v i c e i n the governaunce and orderinge tharmie committed  48  to h i s charge i f nede s h a l l r e q u i r e . "  Croft was to give advice about the  f o r t i f i c a t i o n s of Berwick, and was also to a s s i s t the Governor, Lord Wharton, 73 xn t r a i n i n g and p o s i t i o n i n g the troops there. For the r e s t of Mary's r e i g n C r o f t was to remain on the S c o t t i s h borders, during which time he would have accumulated  the experience which caused him  to be placed i n a more responsible p o s i t i o n s h o r t l y a f t e r E l i z a b e t h ascended to the throne.  Because the border troubles were i n c r e a s i n g , and because the  E a r l of Shrewesbury d i d not have much experience i n m i l i t a r y a f f a i r s , the Council had decided to send to h i s assistance "some expert and wyse man of 74 credytt."  For t h i s stated reason, the Council sent C r o f t and, s h o r t l y  afterwards, Wharton, "... w i t h whome he may conferre and use t h e i r advise i n suche thinges as he s h a l l think convenyent . ,.." "' The Council had been hav7  ing some trouble w i t h Lord Wharton, who was suspected of not being as d i l i g e n t i n guarding against the Scots as he might, and at the beginning of August declared that the E a r l of Northumberland was to share the r e s p o n s i b i l i t y of 76 Warden of the East and Middle Marches with him. Croft was t o l d to break w i t h Wharton and support Northumberland, a d e c i s i o n which apparently annoyed 78 Shrewesbury, who wished Croft to attend him. Northumberland, aided by C r o f t , had more success against the Scots than had Lord Wharton, and was thanked by 77  the C o u n c i l , on August 25, for h i s "advertisementes of the Scottes d i s p e r s 79 ing."  The d e c i s i o n of the Council to b r i n g back former r e b e l s , such as C r o f t ,  appears to have been a wise one.  At l e a s t , C r o f t ' s a b i l i t i e s were widely i n  demand i f both the E a r l of Shrewesbury and the E a r l of Northumberland s p e c i a l l y requested h i s services i n the North, and the Council seems to have r e a l ized the value of h i s m i l i t a r y experience. Shrewesbury soon indicated that he valued Croft h i g h l y , and praised him  49  as equal w i t h Northumberland, Wharton, the E a r l of Westmoreland, and S i r Ralph Bulmer:  . ... they have shewed i n t h i s present s e r v i c e a great good w i l , much i n t e l l i g e n c e , and a patience i n doing and s u f f e r i n g the weather and the want of things.^0  Croft had also been one of the signers of l e t t e r s w r i t t e n to the P r i v y Council 81 from Scotland,  and had apparently been sent down to London to communicate at 82  f i r s t hand with the Council there. his  Part of Croft's value may have been i n  a b i l i t y to worm information out of the Scots, such information being  necessary because the Council was u n w i l l i n g to embark on a major expedition u n t i l i t knew i f Scotland was merely continuing i t s constant pressure on the border, or whether i t intended to send troops further south into England. Strype reports that C r o f t and Bulmer had managed to get together w i t h a Scot and a Frenchman, and "... where using free and open conversation together, (and perhaps that accompanied w i t h l i b e r a l drinking,) they learned divers 83 m a t e r i a l points r e l a t i n g to the Scots' present designed e n t e r p r i s e . . . . " If 84 Croft had managed t h i s , Mary's reported comment, that she " l i k e d i t w e l l , " was deserved, and augured w e l l f o r him. A responsible p o s i t i o n i n the army, although accompanied by effusions of gratitude from h i s commander and the Queen, d i d not, however, make up for the income C r o f t had l o s t .  There are no i n d i c a t i o n s that Mary intended to restore  the income he had received from lands he had formerly held i n Herefordshire, and the pay he would have made i n Scotland would not be close to h i s previous income..  Therefore, i t i s not s u r p r i s i n g to f i n d Croft l i s t e d as being a pen-  sioner of the King of Spain, from whom he had received two hundred crowns, 85 equivalent to f i f t y pounds, f o r the l a s t s i x months of 1557. I t i s not  50  apparent whether or not he had been a pensioner before mid-1557, but i t i s unl i k e l y , f o r the simple reason that he would have had no information of any importance to impart.  As a man of some importance i n the North, he might be ex-  pected to pass along an occasional t i d - b i t to the Spanish spy network, and, even i f he d i d not, i t was as w e l l to keep Spain i n C r o f t ' s good graces at a hundred pounds a year. was very small.  This amount, compared to what others were r e c e i v i n g ,  The E a r l of Derby was c o l l e c t i n g f i v e hundred pounds per  annum, as was C r o f t ' s commander, the E a r l of Shrewesbury, and the amount owed to "pensioners, chamberlains, gentlemen and other servants" i n A p r i l , was^£8,814. 2s. l d . ^ ^  Some men,  1558,  such as Shrewesbury, received money because  they were "good C h r i s t i a n s , " or, i n other words, good C a t h o l i c s , but i t i s 87 recorded of C r o f t simply that "He i s a serviceable man."  C r o f t continued  to be a pensioner of Spain f o r much of the r e s t of h i s l i f e , but, although i t was at various times reported by Spanish o f f i c i a l s that he was a C a t h o l i c , i t i s more l i k e l y that Croft was a. r e l i g i o u s opportunist. Knowing that he would receive an income from Spain i f he appeared C a t h o l i c , he would be u n w i l l i n g to cut o f f a p r o f i t a b l e source of income by denying what Spain b e l i e v e d , but neither would he want to damage the even more p r o f i t a b l e r e l a t i o n s h i p he held with Elizabeth.  Receiving an income from Spain was a penalty C r o f t i n c u r r e d ,  as d i d many others, because of t h e i r chronic need f o r money which was not forthcoming from a n o t o r i o u s l y grudging Court. For the remainder of 1557, and u n t i l E l i z a b e t h succeeded Mary i n November, 1558, C r o f t remained i n s e r v i c e on the S c o t t i s h border.  In January, 1558, he  88 was i n command of three hundred men at Berwick, 89 he was reported "sore disseased," i s conjecture.  where, at the end of A p r i l ,  most l i k e l y of the plague, although t h i s  To add to his d i s t r e s s e d f i n a n c i a l p o s i t i o n , he had apparently  51  not received any pay for over a month, a c o n d i t i o n which was not uncommon i n the army, and r e s t i t u t i o n of twenty s h i l l i n g s a day " f o r h i s dyettes" was 90 ordered to be paid him.  For t h e i r e x p l o i t s i n a border skirmish i n J u l y ,  Croft and others were thanked by the Council i n a l e t t e r of September 7, "... both that they were so redy and forwarde to serve and also that they kept 91 t h e i r men i n so good order...." F i n a l l y , on October 17, e x a c t l y one month before Mary was to d i e , the Council ordered Croft to return to London, and to delegate whom he thought most responsible to look a f t e r the Borders and the 92 town of Berwick,  which i n d i c a t e s that he had r i s e n even further up the s c a l e .  What the Council wished to consult with Croft about i s unclear, and, i n any event, the c o n s u l t a t i o n may not have occurred, because of the Queen's death. The accession of E l i z a b e t h , while Croft was i n London, must have pleased Croft g r e a t l y , and hopes for advancement, and for a return of h i s l o s t income, must have seemed a d e f i n i t e p o s s i b i l i t y .  52  CHAPTER IV CROFT IN. SCOTLAND  (1558-1560)  Elizabeth's accession to the throne was accompanied by great hopes on the part of those Englishmen who had suffered under Mary f o r t h e i r Protestantism or suspected  lack of f a i t h f u l n e s s to the Queen.  However, Mary had not been un-  popular only because of her r e l i g i o u s p o l i c i e s , but, as i n d i c a t e d above, her entanglement i n the Spanish wars w i t h France had antagonized  the whole country.  E l i z a b e t h , of course, had to tread w a r i l y , but her accession could hardly help but be the occasion f o r joy among many, and E l i z a b e t h soon i n d i c a t e d that her subjects' hopes were not to be i n v a i n .  Barely two months a f t e r Mary's death,  many of the Protestant c l e r g y who had been i n voluntary e x i l e on the Continent returned to England,''" and the f i r s t Parliament of Elizabeth's r e i g n , c a l l e d on 2 January 25, 1559, proved to c o n s i s t l a r g e l y of protestants.  Hayward records  that E l i z a b e t h was gaining the good w i l l of the country . . . by e r e c t i n g a ,r  m i l i t a r y d i s c i p l i n e i n every s h i r e , and by g i v i n g pensiones and preferments  3 to men of actione,"  and was having a l i s t drawn up of a l l those who had served  her f a t h e r , brother, or s i s t e r , to discover who were most s u i t a b l e f o r advancement.^  Such news must have been most welcome to C r o f t , who had not only served  Henry V I I I , Edward, and Mary, but knew E l i z a b e t h personally, having been imprisoned w i t h her. I f anyone were to b e n e f i t from the new monarch, C r o f t was one who stood an e x c e l l e n t chance. I n A p r i l , 1559, peace was concluded between England and France and, at the same time, between England and Scotland. With the signing of the peace t r e a t y , one of the major grievances of the people appeared to be at an end. However, the war w i t h Scotland was not to conclude for another year, and i t was i n t h i s war that C r o f t was to be given h i s f i r s t  53  important post under E l i z a b e t h , a post which was to end i n h i s disgrace and i n involuntary absence from Court f o r almost ten years. The f i r s t m i l i t a r y problem facing E l i z a b e t h a f t e r she came to the throne was that of a threatened invasion from the north.  Mary, Queen of Scots, was  also Queen of France and, i n her absence, the country was ruled by the Dowager Queen, Mary of Guise. the  There were French troops i n Scotland, and England faced  p o s s i b i l i t y of a combined attack of Catholic forces from both north and  south.  However, although Mary and the Dowager were f i r m C a t h o l i c s , not a l l  Scots wished to follow t h i s r e l i g i o n , nor d i d they r e l i s h French troops being stationed on S c o t t i s h s o i l .  Opposing Mary was the formidable John Knox, who  supported Maitland of Lethington, the leader of the f a c t i o n which sought to depose Mary of Guise and eject the French s o l d i e r s . the  England's defences i n  north had never been strong, as^could be seen by the periodic forays made  by Scots i n t o the northern counties, which frequently went unpunished.  Secu-  r i t y of the f r o n t i e r was under the d i r e c t i o n of the Wardens of the East, Middle, and West Marches, and of the commander of Berwick, the c h i e f town, located near Edinburgh on the east coast. Part of the problem l a y i n the d i f f i c u l t y of keeping Berwick supplied with food, a problem often referred to l a t e r by C r o f t , but another major d i f f i c u l t y occurred because the Council was n o t o r i o u s l y stingy w i t h money, and troops were often unpaid and unable to be clothed and armed properly.  Outside of Berwick, defence of the Marches l a y  i n the hands of the three Wardens, and these were o c c a s i o n a l l y incompetent and even d i s l o y a l , turning a b l i n d eye to i n f r a c t i o n s , and seemingly unable to i d e n t i f y the offenders. the  With a growing m i l i t a n c y on the part of the Lords of  Congregation, l e d by Maitland of Lethington and Knox;  w i t h an ever-in-  creasing number of French troops being shipped to Scotland; and w i t h a border  54  s i t u a t i o n that appeared to be growing as a problem, i t was obvious that E l i z a beth had to take steps to a l t e r the s i t u a t i o n , and that she needed competent and l o y a l men to c a r r y out the plan. Although a peace t r e a t y had been signed w i t h France i n A p r i l , 1559, which had o s t e n s i b l y ended E n g l i s h - S c o t t i s h d i f f i c u l t i e s , the s i t u a t i o n i n the north s t e a d i l y d e t e r i o r a t e d , and o u t r i g h t host i l i t i e s were again to occur e a r l y i n 1560. However, long before that time, there had been minor outbreaks of v i o l e n c e , and i t was obvious that the s i t u a t i o n would have to come to a head. Among those who had received experience on the border and i n combat was James Croft and, as a protestant who had been punished by Mary, h i s advancement was only a matter of time. For a year previous to Mary's death, C r o f t had been serving i n Berwick as an adviser to the E a r l of Westmoreland, and had s e v e r a l times been commended for  h i s good s e r v i c e .  lived.  His advancement was u n l i k e l y , however, as long as Mary  C r o f t was probably i n London at the time of Mary's death, but s h o r t l y  afterwards was sent back to Berwick w i t h a message from the Council to Westmoreland concerning the management of the Marches.^  A t the time, Berwick was  without a Captain, although one was needed immediately because the town was to be f o r t i f i e d and e x t r a troops sent there. of  The importance of the p o s i t i o n  Captain was indicated by the Council when i t declared that "... the most  s u f f i c i e n t man i n the realm should be placed there, i t being a place of so g  great moment."  The Council decided eventually to appoint Lord Thomas Evers  as Captain, presumably because he had served as a lieutenant on the borders for  s e v e r a l years,  9  and summoned him to London.  10  Evers indicated that he  wished to confer about h i s o f f i c e w i t h C e c i l , i n the presence of Croft and Sir  John Brende, two others who had had considerable experience i n the north.  Therefore, i n e a r l y January, 1559, Evers, C r o f t , and Brende went down to  55  London, where Croft was to receive a d d i t i o n a l orders from the C o u n c i l . Evers' appointment i s somewhat of a mystery.  I t may have been meant  purely as a stop-gap u n t i l a more s u i t a b l e candidate could be found, or i t may have been a deserved reward f o r services rendered.  At any r a t e , there  are several i n d i c a t i o n s that Evers accepted the post r e l u c t a n t l y , and h i s v i s i t w i t h C r o f t to London may have been to convince the Council that Croft would be a more s u i t a b l e man than himself as Captain of Berwick.  Earlier,  i n December, Evers had requested that he be allowed to leave Scotland for a time, but had been informed that "... h i s Lordshipp i s required to forbeare that matter u n t y l l a more convenyent tyme hereafter...."'''''' Berwick was not the most pleasant place at the best of times f o r a c o u r t i e r to while away the hours, and i t i s quite reasonable that Evers would prefer to be i n London rather than i n an i s o l a t e d and cold l i t t l e S c o t t i s h border town i n mid-winter. At any r a t e , whether or not h i s appointment was intended as being temporary or permanent, he served f o r only a few months before being o f f i c i a l l y replaced by C r o f t , and, even during that time, he was generally i n London, and l e f t Croft i n command at Berwick. Even though the war between England and Scotland had not been concluded at the beginning of 1559, both sides appeared to be continuing the f i g h t r e luctantly.  Nevertheless, while i n London Croft was ordered to confer w i t h  the E a r l of Northumberland  and w i t h the Bishop of Durham concerning the r a i s 12  ing of another thousand troops to serve i n Scotland, r e t u r n i n g to Berwick on January 23.  which he did before  On h i s a r r i v a l there, he passed on to  Evers a l e t t e r from the Council permitting him to go to London, and naming 13 C r o f t as deputy i n h i s absence. Although Evers d i d not leave immediately,  56  because of increased h o s t i l i t i e s on the border, from January 23 u n t i l he was formally named Captain i n March, Croft held a l l the r e s p o n s i b i l i t i e s that Evers would have had. In f a c t , although Evers was s t i l l at Berwick, Croft made decisions that cannot have pleased Evers, p a r t i c u l a r l y as the Council concurred w i t h C r o f t .  On January 4, Evers had complained about the insubor-  d i n a t i o n of a Captain Vaughan, whom he asked to be d i s m i s s e d , ^ but on the 30th, C r o f t was w r i t i n g to the C o u n c i l , p r a i s i n g Vaughan as " t r u s t y , " and asking that he be returned to B e r w i c k , ^ which he was. Croft; s p r i n c i p a l duty 1  i n the next few months was to take part, w i t h the E a r l of Northumberland and his brother, S i r Henry Percy, i n the peace negotiations w i t h the S c o t t i s h commissioners.  These included Lord Bothwell, a Frenchman named Sarlabos, and the 16  Secretary of Scotland, Maitland of Lethington,  the three representing a  rather odd combination of i n t e r e s t s , both n a t i o n a l and r e l i g i o u s .  As Croft  had reported e a r l i e r , "... a l l p a r t i e s are weary of the w a r s , " ^ and both England and Scotland must have been pleased by the signing of a preliminary peace t r e a t y on March 6, which provided for a cessation of f i g h t i n g for two 18 months. However, peace was not o f f i c i a l l y declared u n t i l A p r i l 2, at the same time the t r e a t y was signed between England and France, at which time the Scots agreed to tear down the f o r t r e s s e s b u i l t by them and the French along 19 the borders.  By March 28, C r o f t had been o f f i c i a l l y declared Captain of 20  the town and c a s t l e of Berwick.  His duties included that of supervising  the withdrawal of forces from the border area, but i t i s u n l i k e l y that e i t h e r he or the Council ever s e r i o u s l y considered c a r r y i n g out t h i s part o f the agreement. Money continued to be a major problem at Berwick, and a shortage of funds made d i s m i s s a l of the troops impossible.  With the peace t r e a t y signed, i t was  57  presumed i n England that a smaller body of men would be required i n the border area, and Croft was  t o l d to cut down on the number of troops there.  Elizabeth  21 had intimated that "she thinks he w i l l do w e l l "  i n c a s h i e r i n g two bands of  horsemen, which Croft had proposed i n order to "abridge the Queen's charges at 22 Berwick,"  but t h i s was easier s a i d than done.  On A p r i l 14 the s o l d i e r s were  s t i l l not dismissed, because they had not been paid, and Croft suggested that "... men  i t were b e t t e r f o r the Queen to borrow money on i n t e r e s t than that those 23 should remain i n wages...." On approximately the same date, however,  the Council i n London had decided to send "the Quenes Majesties  threasure"  24 northwards,  and presumably the troops at Berwick were paid and  s h o r t l y afterwards.  dismissed  However, the problem of c u t t i n g down expenses at Berwick  continued, and Croft was to w r i t e to the Council several times i n reference to 25 the necessity of paying the s o l d i e r s . Adding to the expense of maintaining the garrison at Berwick was f i c u l t y of procuring food.  the d i f -  The town could not be supplied from the surround-  ing countryside, p a r t i c u l a r l y during the winter months, and most supplies had to be shipped up from London. At t h i s date, e a r l y i n 1559, the problem was not as great as i t was  to become s i x months l a t e r , but was nevertheless  item often r a i s e d by Croft i n l e t t e r s to the Council.  an  There was also the pos-  s i b i l i t y that the Surveyor of V i c t u a l s , Abbingdon, was e i t h e r incompetent or crooked.  C r o f t r e f e r r e d to there being f i v e or s i x thousand pounds worth of  provisions at Berwick, but that he "...  remembers 13,0001. or 14,0001 being 26  delivered i n t o the hands of the surveyor of v i c t u a l s . "  On May  19, Croft  reported that Abbingdon would leave h i s post at the end of the summer, and requested  that the Council choose someone to replace him, because he could  f i n d "...  no one dwelling here about desirous to meddle with so great a bur-  58  then."  This i s of i n t e r e s t , because Croft was l a t e r to be accused by the 28  Duke of Norfolk of using h i s p o s i t i o n as Captain for h i s own b e n e f i t , mating that C r o f t had as good as s t o l e n money from the Treasury.  inti-  I f t h i s had  been the case, however, i t i s u n l i k e l y that C r o f t would have asked the Council to appoint a s u i t a b l e person to the p o s i t i o n of Surveyor of V i c t u a l s , a post which was extremely responsible and included the handling of large amounts of money.  Had C r o f t wished to s t e a l from t h i s o f f i c e , i t i s f a r more probable  that he would have at l e a s t suggested someone to f i l l the-post.  That he d i d  not suggests'his innocence of Norfolk's charges. Croft's concern with money was not, however, confined to h i s p o s i t i o n as Captain of Berwick.  The p o s i t i o n was a responsible one, and c a r r i e d a salary 29  of twenty s h i l l i n g s per day,  besides which Croft was e n t i t l e d to payment for  servants and for such expenses as food, accommodation, and arms.  However, he  was c h r o n i c a l l y short of money, and frequently requested that C e c i l grant him e x t r a sources of revenue.  At Elizabeth's f i r s t parliament, which met from  January 25 to May 8, 1559, C r o f t , and others who had been involved i n Wyatt's R e b e l l i o n , were given back the revenue of which they had been deprived by 30 Mary. T h i s , however, d i d not s a t i s f y C r o f t , who wrote to C e c i l on May 2, complaining p i t i f u l l y about h i s poor h e a l t h , and asking to-be allowed to w i t h 31 draw for a time and to appoint a deputy.  He added that he hoped "...  that  some greater man w i l l be appointed i n h i s behalf, one able to support himself of h i s revenues, whereof he i s u t t e r l y d e s t i t u t e , " and begged C e c i l " — 32 remember h i s small t i t h e s to help to f i n d h i s c h i l d r e n bread." C e c i l was not to take C r o f t ' s hand-wringing  to  Obviously,  at. surface value, such melodrama-  t i c utterances being part of the r h e t o r i c generally applied i n such cases, and i t i s most u n l i k e l y that C r o f t ever s e r i o u s l y considered leaving h i s hard-  59  earned and long hoped-for p o s i t i o n .  The piteous appeal did bear f r u i t , though,  and on August 3, Croft thanked C e c i l ... ,r  for h i s opinion of the tenths which  he f c r o f t ] sued f o r , and d e s i r e s that the Queen be thanked on h i s behalf. The grant he received was  11  that of a twenty-one year lease on lands i n Hereford-  s h i r e which had formerly belonged to Leominster p r i o r y , and which had a y e a r l y _r 34 rent of «t 40.16.0.  Previous to t h i s , i n January, he had been granted a s i m i 35  l a r lease of land i n the same area, with a y e a r l y value of/98.16.9%, bably at the time he had been restored i n blood.  pro-  His income from these two  leases of land, plus the land h i s father already owned at Croft C a s t l e , plus his s a l a r y and p e r q u i s i t e s from h i s p o s i t i o n at Berwick, plus a pension which 36 he may  s t i l l have been r e c e i v i n g from Spain,  would have given C r o f t a reason-  ably large income, and he had l i t t l e to fear of being unable "to f i n d his c h i l dren bread," as he had p l a i n t i v e l y stated to C e c i l . R e l i g i o u s dissension w i t h i n Scotland was becoming more pronounced throughout 1559, and i t was  i n c r e a s i n g l y d i f f i c u l t for England to avoid being  em-  b r o i l e d i n the c o n f l i c t between the Lords of the Congregation and the forces of Mary of Guise and France. In May, Croft reported that "the dissension of 37 r e l i g i o n continues," and clashes between the followers of Knox and those of the Dowager occurred frequently. Croft was approached s e c r e t l y by the protes38 tants, who  asked that assistance be given them by England,  and on J u l y 8  C e c i l had r e p l i e d to Croft that he should tread w a r i l y , but that he should "endeavour to k i n d l e the f i r e " : The Protestants there s h a l l be essayed with a l l f a i r promises f i r s t , next with money, and l a s t with arms. Wisdom i s to provide for the worst. Promises being of scanty comfort to the Scots, Croft reminded C e c i l that "  60  i n a l l p r a c t i c e s , money must be one part,"  but that the Queen should h e s i 41  tate to a i d the S c o t t i s h protestants u n t i l they were completely u n i f i e d . The problem of whether or not to o f f e r a i d to the Lords of the Congregation and, i f so, what form the assistance should take, continued Council f o r several months.  to bother the  I f money were proferred o s t e n t a t i o u s l y , i t could  w e l l by taken by the Dowager as a d e l i b e r a t e provocation, while support by E n g l i s h troops would be tantamount to an outright d e c l a r a t i o n of war. As the year progressed and i t seemed to England that increasing numbers of French troops were a r r i v i n g i n Scotland, and that m i l i t a r y i n s t a l l a t i o n s were being strengthened rather than destroyed, a i d to the protestant forces  increased  and became more b l a t a n t , u n t i l , i n the Spring of 1560, d i r e c t confrontation of E n g l i s h and S c o t t i s h forces was to occur. Reports from Berwick i n d i c a t e d not only a growing Catholic-Protestant antagonism, but, as suggested above, an increasing preparedness f o r war. Croft had i n d i c a t e d , on June 26, that he was u n w i l l i n g to discharge any more 42 s o l d i e r s , and that "... the loss of Calais should also be remembered," subtle h i n t that must have j o l t e d the Council.  a  Throckmorton wrote to C e c i l  that he had been t o l d that Croft's secretary was being entertained by the Dowager, a report that may have been c i r c u l a t e d to d i s c r e d i t Groft, as Throckmorton says, or which may have indicated treachery on the part of the secretary.  Throckmorton believed "... that S i r James Crofts himself i s u t t e r l y 43  v o i d of a l l s u s p i c i o n , but what h i s secretary may be, God knoweth."  Of  course, i t i s possible that C r o f t was g u i l t y , but as nothing else was s a i d of the matter, i t i s u n l i k e l y . Throckmorton was a f r i e n d of Croft's and, had been imprisoned w i t h him a f t e r Wyatt's R e b e l l i o n , so he would be u n l i k e l y to report that Croft was a t r a i t o r .  The Dowager had r e p l i e d several times to Croft that  61  f o r t i f i c a t i o n s , p a r t i c u l a r l y at Eyemouth, were being destroyed, promised under the t r e a t y , but there was  44  as had been  l i t t l e evidence that any serious work  was being undertaken to p u l l down the battlements.  The s i t u a t i o n i n Scotland  going from bad to worse, the Council decided to send to Berwick S i r Ralph Sadler "...  as w e l l to view the s t a t e of the f o r t i f i c a t i o n s there as also to 45  consider the reckoning of the Treasurer there."  Sadler's appointment, on  August 6, marks a turning point i n England's r a p i d l y d e t e r i o r a t i n g r e l a t i o n ship w i t h Scotland. Throughout the remainder of 1559, Croft and Sadler worked together i n n e g o t i a t i n g w i t h the S c o t t i s h protestants and i n looking a f t e r the f o r t i f i c a t i o n and government of the border area.  Sadler, described i n the D i c t i o n a r y 46  of N a t i o n a l Biography as a " d i p l o m a t i s t , "  had had considerable  experience  i n Scotland i n the reigns of Henry V I I I and Edward VI, but, as a keen protest a n t , had gone into voluntary retirement on the accession of Mary. 1559, together with C r o f t and the E a r l of Northumberland, Sadler was  In August, appointed  a commissioner to s e t t l e the border disputes with Scotland, and to meet with 47 t h e i r S c o t t i s h counterparts, Bothwell, Lord Hume, and the L a i r d of Cesford, to discuss the ransom of p r i s o n e r s . ^  However, i t was unknown to Sadler's  f e l l o w commissioners that he had been entrusted with secret i n s t r u c t i o n s by C e c i l "...  to c o n f e r r , t r e a t e , or p r a c t i s e , w i t h any manner of person of Scot-  land," and that he could reward any s u i t a b l e person he chose w i t h sums of up 49 to three thousand pounds.  As t h i s was what C r o f t had been urging the Coun-  c i l to do f o r several months, i t i s not s u r p r i s i n g that he. was very soon t o l d of the plan by Sadler, and that a l l negotiations from then on were c a r r i e d on by both men  together.  Sadler a r r i v e d i n Berwick on August 18 or 1 9 , a n d  the 29th wrote to C e c i l that he had taken Croft f u l l y into h i s confidence:  on  62  ... for besyds that he i s best acquaynted with the matier, so i s he a wise man, secret and d i l i g e n t , both i n t h i s and a l l other things tending to the advauncement of the quene's majesties service.->1 C e c i l had recommended that Sadler use the advice o f any he f e l t most competent, but Croft was apparently the only man he t r u s t e d .  Northumberland he  dismissed as "very unmete," and Percy, the E a r l ' s brother, he considered not "...  a man o f such i n t e g r y t e as i n any wise may be comparable to s i r James 52  Croft."  The f a c t that both Northumberland and h i s brother were Catholics  explains Sadler's d e c i s i o n , as i t would hardly be possible f o r these two men to be involved i n discussions with the a n t i - C a t h o l i c Lords of the Congregation.  Croft's r e l i g i o u s f e e l i n g s were i n no way an i n t e r f e r e n c e , and h i s  imprisonment i n 1554 a good recommendation, and he and Sadler worked together w e l l while they were i n Berwick. As the months passed, i t became more apparent to Croft and Sadler that a confrontation would be unavoidable, vinced.  although the Council was s t i l l not con-  Sadler had numerous v e r b a l clashes with Northumberland, whom he r e -  buked when he stated that he had never known the border area to be worse 53 governed,  and he and Croft intimated to C e c i l that Northumberland had been 54  r e c e i v i n g secret information from the Clerk o f the Council.  On September 9  C e c i l asked Sadler's opinion about changing the wardens o f the East and Middl Marches (Northumberland) and the West Marches (Lord Dacre), both of whom were Catholics and unable, or u n w i l l i n g , to stop the constant incursions there. Although Sadler had suggested Croft for warden of the East M a r c h e s , a n d had protested that he d i d not wish to bear the r e s p o n s i b i l i t y or expense himself, nevertheless, on October 30, E l i z a b e t h made him warden of both East and Middl Marches i n Northumberland's stead, "... as one whome we w i l l i n g l y can be con-  63  tente to burden with a charge of s p c i a l l t r u s t and a u c t o r i t i e . . . . " f l a t t e r y was  This  small comfort to Sadler, although his appointment would mean the  border area would be. better governed.  He s h i f t e d the r e s p o n s i b i l i t y somewhat  by c r e a t i n g deputies of Relph Grey, i n the East Marches, and S i r John Forster 58 i n the Middle Marches,  but the burden would s t i l l l a r g e l y be Sadler's.  Northumberland's d i s m i s s a l i n d i c a t e s that the Council was r e a l i z i n g at l a s t that i t could not continue government of the border area i n the o l d , lackad a i s i c a l manner, and that preparations were under way Scotland.  Further developments throughout 1559  for d e c i s i v e a c t i o n i n  showed that competent and  f a i t h f u l leadership was very necessary there, p a r t i c u l a r l y as a l l i n d i c a t i o n s were that England would soon be involved i n another war. 59 Rumours that French troops were being sent to Scotland, of Guise was confirmed.  and that Mary  preparing f o r war, continued to c i r c u l a t e , and were eventually Among Mary's preparations was that of f o r t i f y i n g the town of  L e i t h , a seaport j u s t outside Edinburgh, which the Lords of the Congregation wished to attack, and f o r which purpose they requested a i d , i n the form of money, from England. ^ 6  tants by E n g l a n d ,  61  Sadler and Croft favoured open support of the protes-  but, as C e c i l pointed out, such support could not be given 62  without b r i n g i n g about a t o t a l breach with Scotland, ready to do that.  and England was not yet  However, the Council was supplying money, and was  to prepare f o r b a t t l e , i f i t should eventually occur.  There was  beginning  l i t t l e chance  of keeping these measures s e c r e t , p a r t i c u l a r l y a f t e r Bothwell had captured  a  messenger, on November 3, who was c a r r y i n g one thousand pounds to the protes63 tants.  C e c i l was also beginning to fear that the skirmishes that had  occurred between the troops of the Lords of the Congregation and those of the Dowager were proving disastrous f o r the protestants, and that i f England  64  did not involve h e r s e l f d i r e c t l y , the protestants might w e l l be beaten e n t i r e ly.  In a l e t t e r to Sadler and Croft on November 12, he gave reasons why  the  c o n f l i c t should be stepped up, the c h i e f reason being that "... whensoever they [ i e . the French] s h a l l make an ende with Scotlande, they w i l l begin w i t h 64 Inglande. . . ."  Two days l a t e r , on November 14, the Duke of Norfolk was 65  appointed lieutenant-general of the n o r t h ,  a move which marked the beginning  of d e f i n i t e plans f o r the by-now inescapable c o n f r o n t a t i o n . Thomas Howard, fourth Duke of Norfolk, was, i n 1559, a young man of twenty-one, and h i s post as lieutenant-general was the f i r s t important one i n 66 his career.  As the head of one of the leading f a m i l i e s i n England, i t was  c r u c i a l f o r E l i z a b e t h , during the somewhat precarious e a r l y years of her r e i g n , to a t t r a c t h i s a l l e g i a n c e .  This she d i d by g i v i n g him the charge of  the f i r s t great undertaking of her r e i g n , the expulsion of French troops from Scotland. December.  Norfolk was not due to a r r i v e at Berwick u n t i l the end of  He was to be a s s i s t e d i n h i s f i r s t campaign by Lord Grey, a s o l -  d i e r of much experience i f l i t t l e imagination, who was made leader of the 67 foot.,  and S i r W i l l i a m Wynter, a s a i l o r who had taken part i n many sea  b a t t l e s , i n c l u d i n g the burning of L e i t h and Edinburgh i n 1544, and who  was 68  put i n charge of the navy to ensure that no more French troops were landed. As w e l l , Norfolk had been ordered by the Queen and the Council to take the advice of such men as Sadler and C r o f t , who were experienced i n warfare and 69 i n the a f f a i r s of Scotland.  To further ensure that Norfolk d i d not make  any f o o l i s h mistakes i n h i s f i r s t assignment, both C e c i l and E l i z a b e t h wrote numerous l e t t e r s to him, g i v i n g advice on matters both t r i v i a l and important. Norfolk could be expected to do h i s best, but, being very young, i n e x p e r i enced, and headstrong, h i s best might w e l l not have been good enough.  It is  65  possible that he resented the advice, and the advisors, that had been thrust upon him, f e e l i n g himself too confined, as he indeed was, to do much on h i s own i n i t i a t i v e .  However, he soon showed that he did not wish to accept a l l  the blame as w e l l as a l l the g l o r y , and when the major defeat of the campaign occurred, he q u i c k l y exonerated himself by blaming others.  I t so happened  that one of Norfolk's p r i n c i p a l scapegoats turned out to be S i r James C r o f t , but i t i s q u i t e l i k e l y that someone e l s e could have been chosen to shoulder the r e s p o n s i b i l i t y for f a i l u r e . Although Norfolk a r r i v e d at Berwick with no apparent animosity to C r o f t , a f t e r several weeks the f i r s t i n d i c a t i o n s of antagonism appeared.  Norfolk's  e a r l y i n d i c a t i o n s of f r i e n d s h i p might have been feigned, p a r t i c u l a r l y i f he had known that C r o f t was d i s t a n t l y r e l a t e d to Robert Dudley, whose a f f a i r w i t h the Queen was w e l l under way by the time Norfolk l e f t f o r Scotland.  As a d i s -  appointed r i v a l , Norfolk had reason to be jealous of Dudley, and may have vented h i s anger on one of Dudley's kinsmen, although there are.no signs during Norfolk's f i r s t month i n the north that C r o f t was i n disfavour. the war with Scotland was over, however, C r o f t was through the i n i t i a t i v e of Norfolk.  By the time  to be i n disgrace, e n t i r e l y  I t i s important, therefore, to understand  Norfolk's q u a l i f i c a t i o n s and experience before judging C r o f t ' s g u i l t , and events would appear to prove that Norfolk's charges were e n t i r e l y unfounded, and that C r o f t was  to be a s a c r i f i c e necessary  for Norfolk's self-esteem.  E l i z a b e t h could a f f o r d to r i d h e r s e l f of a minor o f f i c i a l i f i t meant keeping Norfolk f i r m l y attached to h e r s e l f and to the Crown. Disagreement between C r o f t and Norfolk began almost as soon as the Duke had a r r i v e d at Berwick i n mid-February.  As Captain of Berwick, C r o f t was i n  charge of f o r t i f i c a t i o n s f o r that c i t y , but on January 23, 1560, Norfolk was  66  complaining  to the Council that Berwick was "... marvelously unapt to be f o r -  t i f i e d without great pain, t r a v a i l , and i n d u s t r y , " ^ and requested one be sent from the Court who  that some-  had more s k i l l than Croft i n planning  fortifi-  cations . However, Norfolk had not yet broken with C r o f t , and he admitted  that  there were good reasons on both sides on the d i f f e r i n g plans for f o r t i f i c a tions . man,  I f i t should seem odd that Norfolk, a completely inexperienced young  should be d i f f e r i n g with C r o f t , who had almost twenty years of m i l i t a r y  experience under h i s b e l t , over what was a m i l i t a r y matter, h i s reasons should not be hard to uncover.  I t i s not unusual for someone taking over a new  to t r y to win favour with h i s superiors by uncovering  e r r o r s , r e a l or imagined,  i n a predecessor's or subordinate's work, and i t appears that such was strategy.  job  Norfolk's  Nevertheless, f o r the f i r s t month at h i s new assignment, Norfolk  attempted to m o l l i f y C r o f t , by p r a i s i n g him i n l e t t e r s , ^ w h i l e , at the same time, complaining  to C e c i l , the C o u n c i l , and the Queen about h i s conduct. 72  Even though Croft agreed with Norfolk that "men  of s k i l l and judgment"  should  be sent from London to consider the f o r t i f i c a t i o n s , animosity between the men  appears to have been i n c r e a s i n g .  two  The s i t u a t i o n must have been worsened by  a l e t t e r from the Council to Norfolk on February 20, i n which i t was  stated  that h i s l e t t e r containing h i s d i f f e r e n c e of opinion with C r o f t over Berwick had been discussed with E l i z a b e t h , "... who doth not d i s a l l o w the answer of 73 Crofts."  The s t a t e of a f f a i r s could not continue i n d e f i n i t e l y , and i t was  no doubt f e l t by the Council that the most s t r a t e g i c move would be to separate. Croft and Norfolk.  This was done, but instead of abating, animosity  continued  and became even more b i t t e r . I t was decided by the Council that Croft should be released from h i s p o s i t i o n as Captain of Berwick and put out of Norfolk's way by making him second-  67  in-command to Lord Grey, who was  i n charge of the foot s o l d i e r s .  obvious move to make, although rather unfortunate nothing wrong except to cross Norfolk.  This was  an  f o r C r o f t , who had done  Apparently, i t was r e a l i z e d i n London  that C r o f t might w e l l f e e l s l i g h t e d , and a f l u r r y of l e t t e r s passed from C e c i l , the C o u n c i l , and the Queen to both Norfolk and C r o f t , e x p l a i n i n g t h e i r reasons and u n d e r l i n i n g the f a c t that Croft was anything wrong.  i n no way  to f e e l he had done  The move had f i r s t been suggested by Lord Grey himself, on  February 19, when he asked that Croft accompany him with the army into Scotland: <• ... i t was r e q u i s i t e to have some d i s c r e e t man of good a u t h o r i t y and c r e d i t to go w i t h him i n that journey, that i n case any misfortune happen to himself, the other might be able to go forward w i t h the enterprise Croft learned of t h i s plan from Grey on the 23rd, and, comparing himself to "an overburdened h o r s e , " a man of small means.  75  s a i d he would be unable to take the p o s i t i o n , being  However, on the 28th, the Queen informed Norfolk that 76  Croft was  to receive payment "which s h a l l seme convenient f o r h i s Degree,"  and Croft was  promised by the Council that "...  the Lord Lieutenant w i l l have  due regard of your l a c k s , and t h e r a f t e r augment your intertaynment,"  77  Sadler  commended Croft to C e c i l upon the appointment and, presumably r e f e r r i n g to a complaint made by Norfolk, s a i d that Croft "... w i l l show himself a s e r v i c e able man,  being r i g h t honestly determined so to do, notwithstanding h i s l a t e 78  warning."  With Croft s a f e l y out of the way,  Norfolk could carry out h i s  plans unhindered and could probably f e e l that he had won a major v i c t o r y . f o r t u n a t e l y for C r o f t , however, i t was  Un-  i n e v i t a b l e that t h e i r paths would  s h o r t l y cross again. E l i z a b e t h had never been eager to invade Scotland, but had accepted the  68  majority d e c i s i o n of her C o u n c i l .  Although Norfolk had been sent north to  keep peace i n the border area, to organize defences, and to encourage the prot e s t a n t s , he soon r e a l i z e d that the s i t u a t i o n would never be resolved without a d i r e c t show of f o r c e . W r i t i n g to C e c i l on February 2, Norfolk declared: ... I beleve that i f any Thinge make them ["ie. the protestants] shewe themselfe open Ennemys to the Frenche, i t must be our open H o s t y l y t i e agenste the Frenche; wyth out the p l a i n Shewe and Manyfestacion whereof, and t i l l they s h a l l p e r f e c t l y see the Entrye of our A i d e , they w i l l s u e r l y sett s t i l l as they have donn hitherto.80 Recognizing the i n e v i t a b l e , E l i z a b e t h made preparations f o r war, but refused to give the word for invasion u n t i l she was convinced, by reports from Scotland and France, that open i n t e r v e n t i o n was the only a l t e r n a t i v e to a French occupation of Scotland.  F i n a l l y , on March 29, the E n g l i s h army, which had  been assembled on the border f o r almost four months, was given orders to cross into Scotland.  Lord Grey, leading s i x thousand i n f a n t r y , crossed the border  and headed towards Edinburgh.  The march was uneventful, and by A p r i l 6 the  troops had a r r i v e d at L e i t h , where some four thousand French troops were entrenched, and where the p r i n c i p a l a c t i o n of the S c o t t i s h campaign was to occur. Although the French s o l d i e r s were f i r m l y i n possession of L e i t h , Mary of Guise had r e t i r e d to Edinburgh C a s t l e , and i t was decided to negotiate with the Dowager before i n i t i a t i n g an attack. Accordingly, a safe-conduct pass was 81 provided f o r C r o f t , S i r George Howard, and s i x others,  and both sides pro-  mised not to begin h o s t i l i t i e s while the conference was going on.  Croft and  the other negotiators declared to the Dowager t h a t , i f she could persuade the French to depart, the E n g l i s h troops would also leave Scotland.  Mary r e p l i e d  that she would have to confer with the French before g i v i n g an answer, which apparently annoyed the E n g l i s h , although they agreed to her wish.82  I n  s p  i e t  69  of the agreement to h a l t h o s t i l i t i e s while the negotiations were being c a r r i e d out, some one thousand f i v e hundred French troops had issued f o r t h from L e i t h 83 and had begun a skirmish w i t h Lord Grey's troops.  The engagement was incon-  c l u s i v e , but was the opening round of the b a t t l e which was to occur soon a f t e r wards, and showed the r e l a t i v e strength of the two opposing forces. The E n g l i s h had two choices regarding the plans f o r L e i t h ;  they could  surround the c i t y and starve i t into submission, or they could mount a d i r e c t attack.  The f i r s t would be c o s t l y i n terms of time and money, the second  would e n t a i l a large loss of l i f e .  However, i t was decided to prepare f o r a  siege, l a r g e l y because the S c o t t i s h protestants were beginning to get the wrong impression of England's i n t e n t i o n s .  On A p r i l 14, E l i z a b e t h wrote to  Norfolk that: As she would not have the Scots m i s t r u s t her, she desires that the siege should be more earnestly prosecuted, and the treaty less regarded... .84 Accordingly, the E n g l i s h troops began to d i g trenches and to mount various attacks on the town throughout A p r i l , none of which were s u c c e s s f u l , because L e i t h was so strongly f o r t i f i e d and because the incursions were not thoroughly planned.  However, at the beginning of May a new campaign was drawn up, which  was to be a f u l l y coordinated and f u l l - s c a l e attempt to dislodge the French. This a t t a c k , while not s u c c e s s f u l , was to lead to conferences which would end the war, and, i n e f f e c t , was successful i n the long run i n removing the French from Scotland. The attack on L e i t h was scheduled for May 7, and on the evening before, Grey gathered the troops together to announce the plan of a c t i o n .  In the days  previous, a breach had been made i n the walls of the c i t y by the a r t i l l e r y ,  70  and i t was  intended that t h i s would be the f o c a l point of the attack.  How-  ever, on the evening of the 6th, C r o f t , Sadler, and Lord Grange had made an 86 inspection of the breach, which they decided to be " v e r i i n s u f f i c i e n t . " Sadler and Grange returned to the camp, agreeing that the plan was not ready to be put into operation, while C r o f t was delegated to Lord Grey.  to report t h e i r findings  He, however, a f t e r a cursory examination of the s i t u a t i o n , de-  cided to go ahead w i t h the attack as planned, and the order to advance was 87 given s h o r t l y a f t e r three i n the morning.  I f Grey had l i s t e n e d to Croft's  advice to delay the operation u n t i l a larger breach had been made i n the w a l l s , the attack would have stood a much better chance of success, and Croft may w e l l have evaded the ignominy that was heaped on him afterwards by Norfolk. As matters stood at the time, the operation appears, i n r e t r o s p e c t , to have been doomed from the s t a r t . The accuracy of Croft's information was proved as soon as the f i r s t reached the w a l l s of L e i t h .  The attack was  men  to be on three s i d e s , concentrat-  ing on the breach, with Vaughan and Randall leading two bands of s o l d i e r s , and 88 C r o f t the t h i r d .  Stow records that the attack f a i l e d because the French had  diverted the r i v e r flowing through the town and had f i l l e d up the moat surrounding i t , and adds that "... by reason of the unfitnesse of the ladders, 89 being too short, the a s s a i l a n t s were repulsed...."  A f t e r several hours of  f i g h t i n g , the E n g l i s h troops were forced to draw back, having l o s t , according 90 to Stow, seven or eight score, besides at l e a s t two or three hundred wounded. The actual t o t a l was undoubtedly higher than Stow's estimate, and the e n t i r e attack had been a major d i s a s t e r . Grey now a l t e r e d h i s t a c t i c s and  decided  to starve the French into submission, and an i n v e s t i g a t i o n began to decide whom to blame for the f i a s c o .  By the beginning of June, the inhabitants and  71  occupiers of L e i t h , no doubt s i c k of a d i e t of doggs, c a t t s , and vermine of ir  91 more v i l e nature,"  appeared ready to surrender, and the death of the Queen  Dowager on June 10 made the E n g l i s h s i t u a t i o n stronger. was  The French p o s i t i o n  immeasurably weakened by the death of Mary of Guise, and without her f o r -  midable presence, the French were f a r more ready to come to terms with the E n g l i s h than they would have been while she was a l i v e .  Peace was eventually  concluded on J u l y 7, under which a l l Frenchmen were to leave Scotland, and 92 Mary Stuart was to give up her claims to the E n g l i s h throne.  By the end of  J u l y the French forces had departed f o r France and the E n g l i s h forces back to England, and the f i r s t m i l i t a r y campaign of Elizabeth's r e i g n had come to a s u c c e s s f u l , i f ignominious,  conclusion.  While i t was a r e l a t i v e l y simple matter to starve the French i n t o submission, p a r t i c u l a r l y a f t e r the death of Mary of Guise, i t proved l e s s easy to a f f i x the blame for the defeat of May 7. Grey and Norfolk each blamed the other, but, considering t h e i r importance, they escaped r e l a t i v e l y unscathed, while a major p o r t i o n of Norfolk's denunciation f e l l on C r o f t .  Knox, who was  t r u l y a fair-weather f r i e n d , recorded that C r o f t "was blamit of mony for not doing h i s dewitie that day,"  and that "sum a s c r i b i t the schortnes of the  ledderis [ l a d d e r s ^ to h i m , " ^ but these observations do. not bear up under s c r u t i n y and were made a f t e r C r o f t had been i n d i c t e d . Norfolk wasted no time i n deciding where the blame l a y , and on May 28 wrote to C e c i l that he had sent 94 for Croft to answer charges.  These were presented on August 19, and i n c l u -  ded the charge that since C r o f t had gone i n t o Scotland he had done everything 95 possible to "discourage her Majesty's friends there," his  that he had neglected  duty during the siege of L e i t h , and that he had outrageously deceived the  Queen.  The f i r s t charge i s patently r i d i c u l o u s , the second unproveable, and  72  the  t h i r d so vague as to be meaningless, but a scapegoat had to be found, and,,  being no f r i e n d of N o r f o l k ' s , Croft had l i t t l e chance of a c q u i t t a l from an a l ready committed j u r y .  96 In s p i t e of protestations from Lethington and Randolph,  who wrote to C e c i l that "he never found man franker:-than he [ c r o f t ] was to set 97 f o r t h the purpose,"  C r o f t , whose t r i a l took place i n London, was duly found  g u i l t y of the charges l a i d against him by Norfolk, and f o r a short time was 98 confined i n F l e e t p r i s o n .  I t was hardly an auspicious ending to a hard-  fought campaign, and C r o f t must have f e l t u n j u s t l y punished.  However, i f one  could r i s e through the ranks of administrative or m i l i t a r y service by having important connections at Court, one could also f a l l through crossing someone as i n f l u e n t i a l as Norfolk, as Croft had discovered to h i s chagrin.  Once again,  Croft was i n disfavour and b e r e f t of a Court appointment, and, as he had done six years p r e v i o u s l y , he returned to Herefordshire to ruminate and to wait unt i l o f f i c i a l favour would again f a l l on him.  This time he had ten years to  wait u n t i l he was once more c a l l e d upon to serve the Queen i n London, but i t was the l a s t time that he was to go into involuntary e x i l e away from the favours of Court.  73  CHAPTER V EXILE,  AND  POLITICAL  RESURRECTION  (1560-1587)  As a p r i v a t e c i t i z e n once again, with few prospects i n s i g h t of changing h i s s i t u a t i o n , Croft returned to Herefordshire.  His term of imprisonment i n  the F l e e t was apparently a short one, and h i s c o n v i c t i o n had not been accompanied by any p e n a l t i e s , with the exception of the loss of revenue he had r e ceived as a Crown o f f i c i a l .  E l i z a b e t h did not penalize him f u r t h e r , and  he  continued to enjoy the income from lands that had been returned to him on her accession and others which had been granted him l a t e r .  The f a c t that Croft  did not s u f f e r unduly i n d i c a t e s that he had not incurred great disapproval by Norfolk's charges, and i t i s more than probable that E l i z a b e t h , C e c i l , and  the  Council r e a l i z e d that Norfolk's accusations were w i l d and unproveable. A l though C r o f t returned to Herefordshire, he did so u n w i l l i n g l y , and for the next ten years was favour.  to make repeated e f f o r t s to be restored to the Queen's  These attempts were only p a r t i a l l y s u c c e s s f u l , and u n t i l 1570 Croft  had to be s a t i s f i e d with l o c a l o f f i c e s w i t h i n h i s home county, and with minor appointments which he managed to secure outside Herefordshire. Being a b i g frog i n a small puddle i s seldom s a t i s f y i n g a f t e r one  has  occupied centre stage for even a short time, and Croft must have accepted his county r e s p o n s i b i l i t i e s with a f e e l i n g of a n t i - c l i m a x .  However, h i s duties i n  Herefordshire were of at l e a s t l o c a l importance, and Croft managed to c o n t r i bute to l o c a l administration i n a number of ways. he was  In 1562, and again i n  1564,  l i s t e d as being a member of the Commission of the Peace, c o n s i s t i n g of  t h i r t y - f i v e of the most prominent gentlemen i n the county.  These J u s t i c e s of  the Peace also included important Court personages such as the E a r l of Arundel  74  and the Marquis o f Winchester, who were members of a large number o f Commissions i n various c o u n t i e s ,  1  and they were given a prescribed l i s t of offences  2 on which to give judgment.  Later, i n 1569, Croft was one of the Commission3  ers of Musters for the county,  h i s duties p r i n c i p a l l y being to inform the  Council of the number o f horses, c o n d i t i o n of armour, and number o f men who would be a v a i l a b l e to f i g h t , i f necessary.  These duties could not have been  very onerous, nor were they t e r r i b l y d i s t i n g u i s h e d , but C r o f t also managed to keep i n touch through h i s e l e c t i o n to the House of Commons as the senior member f o r the county i n the second parliament of Elizabeth's r e i g n , which met i n 1562-1563.^ i n parliament  Croft had been elected previously, i n 1541, but had not sat from that date u n t i l 1562.  However, h i s e l e c t i o n was to be the  beginning o f a long and continuous record, and he sat i n every parliament 1562 u n t i l h i s death i n 1590.  from  Other than attending to h i s duties i n l o c a l  a f f a i r s , Croft must have spent some time looking a f t e r h i s estates i n the county, as he was the p r i n c i p a l b e n e f i c i a r y of h i s father's w i l l , Croft having died i n January, 1562. Finances continued  Richard  5  to be a major preoccupation  with C r o f t , even though  the opportunities or need to spend conspicuously had been c u r t a i l e d by h i s e x i t from Court c i r c l e s . was  One o f the best recognized ways to obtain an income  to procure the wardship of an orphan, the marriage o f whom could often be  extremely p r o f i t a b l e to the guardian.  The system led i n e v i t a b l y to abuses,  as i t s major purpose was to r a i s e money for the State, rather than to protect orphans.  I t has been c a l c u l a t e d that the Elizabethan government could c a l l 6  upon an income o f f i f t e e n thousand pounds a year from the Court of Wards. Besides providing revenue, wardships were handed as rewards to f a i t h f u l servants, thereby saving r o y a l expenditure.  The r e c e i v e r o f a wardship would  75  generally have to pay out a large sum of money, which he would hope to recoup upon the marriage of h i s ward. for  I t i s not recorded how much Croft had to pay  the two wardships he obtained i n the e a r l y 1560's, but on May 10, 1560,  he was granted the wardship and marriage of W i l l i a m Rudhale,^ and on J u l y 11, g 1561, that of John Scudamore.  The date of the f i r s t grant i s s i g n i f i c a n t , as  i t occurred at the time Croft was presumably i n disgrace, and i t would surely have been withheld had E l i z a b e t h wished to punish him severely.  Neither would  the second wardship have been granted i f C r o f t had not maintained i n f l u e n t i a l friendships.  In f a c t , the wardship of John Scudamore had been procured  through the i n t e r v e n t i o n of Robert Dudley, who, i n a l e t t e r to an uncle of Scudamore's i n December, 1561, said that "... at the request of my Lady C r o f t , I obteyned the wardship of your nephew f o r her husband, t r u s t i n g therby to 9 procure a mariage f o r my kinswoman S i r James Crofts daghter...."  Scudamore's  uncle had been demanding large sums of money from C r o f t , and Dudley requested him to be more reasonable, h i n t i n g that he might f i n d occasion to "Favor you from tyme to tyme." ^ 1  A family l i n k between Dudley and Croft does much to ex-  p l a i n the wardships C r o f t received, and was to be of considerable  importance  at a l a t e r stage i n h i s career. A f t e r f i v e years i n e x i l e from the Court, Croft must have believed t h a t , by 1566, time was r i p e f o r him to attempt to get back i n t o public l i f e . A l though England was at peace w i t h Scotland, there were s t i l l troops positioned on the border marches and at Berwick.  Croft may have wished to return there,  or could have had a s p i r a t i o n s i n I r e l a n d , which was s t i l l i n a state of constant t u r m o i l .  On A p r i l 13, 1566, the Spanish ambassador was reporting that  "warlike stores" were again being sent to Berwick, and that Croft was i n London, as he was u s u a l l y consulted on matters of t h i s s o r t .  1 1  The w r i t e r ' s  76  opinion of a f f a i r s i n Berwick may have been at f a u l t , as may h i s opinion that Croft was attached to the s e r v i c e of the King of Spain, but i t i s q u i t e reasonable to suppose that C r o f t would have l i k e d to r e t u r n to s e r v i c e , p r e f e r a b l y at h i s former p o s i t i o n of Governor of Berwick.  Nevertheless, Croft apparently  did not r e t u r n to Scotland but to I r e l a n d , where, i n December, 1566, the Spanish ambassador wrote that "...  they had only two good s o l d i e r s here who 12  understood war, and now that Randolph i s dead, the only one l e f t i s C r o f t s . " The Lord Deputy requested, on May 12, 1567, that "Mr. Vice-Chamberlain K n o l l y s or S i r James C r o f t . . . be sent to take the government, while Sydney [" i e . him•J 13 s e l f j i s absent i n the f i e l d , " but whether Croft d i d so or not i s unclear. However, h i s appointment to s e r v i c e i n I r e l a n d , and even more the considerat i o n that he would be s u i t a b l e to serve as temporary Deputy, i n d i c a t e s that he was again r e t u r n i n g to the good graces of the C o u n c i l . This was made s t a r t l i n g l y apparent by h i s sudden appointment to the o f f i c e of Comptroller 14 of the Queen's Household, on January 9, 1570,  the most important p o s i t i o n  he had yet occupied, and which he was to hold f o r the remainder of h i s l i f e time . The p o s i t i o n of Comptroller had apparently been vacant f o r several years, the previous holder of the o f f i c e , S i r Edward Rogers, having died i n 1567.  15  Croft's appointment i s somewhat of a mystery, as there had been no previous i n d i c a t i o n s that he might be given the o f f i c e , nor were there any  reasons  stated (as might be expected) for the p o s i t i o n being offered him.  He had  shown an i n t e r e s t i n the a f f a i r s of the Household when, as a Member of P a r l i a ment i n 1563, he had assisted the current Comptroller, Rogers, i n the making 16 of the Statute of A r t i f i c e r s .  At one point, i n March, 1563, the Statute had  been referred to a "committee," c o n s i s t i n g s o l e l y of C r o f t , which had the task  77  of examining c e r t a i n clauses r e l a t i n g to compulsory service and apprenticeship. '' 1  Even though C r o f t had had t h i s experience, t h i s alone would not have  been enough to determine h i s worth, though i t may have been an important consideration.  A possible reason can be seen i n the f a l l from grace of Norfolk,  Croft's foremost opponent, whose a s p i r a t i o n s were matched only by the overestimation of h i s l i m i t e d a b i l i t i e s .  Norfolk resented the f a c t that lesser  men, as he saw them, were being given positions he f e l t due to him as f i r s t peer i n the realm, and i t was probably Elizabeth's treatment of him which gave him the idea of marrying Mary, Queen of Scots.  From the end of 1568 un-  t i l h i s execution three years l a t e r , he became i n c r e a s i n g l y r e c k l e s s , and h i s 18 thorough i m p l i c a t i o n i n the R i d o l f i P l o t made his death a c e r t a i n t y .  As an  enemy of Norfolk, and one who might have been remembered by E l i z a b e t h as unj u s t l y treated, Croft benefited from Norfolk's sudden downfall.  A t h i r d pos-  s i b l e reason for Croft's s e l e c t i o n as Comptroller was, as Wallace MacCaffrey suggests, that C r o f t was thought to be f r i e n d l y to the Catholics and was proHabsburg, and his appointment would be a c o n c i l i a t o r y move towards Elizabeth's 19 C a t h o l i c subjects.  The s e l e c t i o n of Croft would make the Council more  evenly balanced, and would give a voice on the Council to those who favoured a conservative, pro-Habsburg p o l i c y , and were r e l a t i v e l y un-bellicose on the question of the Queen of Scots.  I t i s c e r t a i n l y true that C r o f t was a Spanish  pensioner, but there i s l i t t l e to suggest that h i s r e l i g i o u s f e e l i n g s were h e a r t f e l t , or anything more than o p p o r t u n i s t i c .  Nevertheless,  a f t e r ten years  of w a i t i n g , Croft suddenly found himself the possessor of one of the most i n f l u e n t i a l positions i n the country, and one he was to hold f o r the remaining twenty years of h i s l i f e . Unfortunately, as a previous w r i t e r has stated, "the duties of Comptrol-  78  l e r of the Household are not of a d e s c r i p t i o n to produce an o f f i c i a l corres20 pondence,"  and there are very few records that one can draw upon to deter-  mine what Croft was doing i n h i s p o s i t i o n as Comptroller.  The Royal Household 21  was the largest department i n the Elizabethan c i v i l s e r v i c e , elaborate and c o s t l y .  and was  both  The three c h i e f o f f i c e r s consisted of the Lord Steward,  who had complete c o n t r o l , although i t was seldom exercised, the Treasurer of the Household, and the Comptroller, who  j o i n t l y supervised the whole House22 hold i n the absence of the Lord Steward. As indicated above, Croft held the p o s i t i o n of Comptroller from 1570 to 1590, while that of Treasurer was 23 held even longer, from 1570 to 1596, by S i r Francis K n o l l y s ,  the two  men  thus having v i r t u a l l y complete c o n t r o l over a l l Household matters and f i n a n ces for two decades.  Under such circumstances, i t would not be s u r p r i s i n g i f  they should r e a l i z e the p o s s i b i l i t i e s f o r g r a f t , but whether they avoided the temptation or not i s open to question.  Most r o y a l servants were hopelessly  i l l - p a i d , p a r t i c u l a r l y as many of the tasks they were c a l l e d upon to perform f e l l outside the formal boundaries of t h e i r p o s i t i o n s .  As Wallace  MacCaffrey  states of the i n d e f i n i t e nature of the assignments of numerous r o y a l o f f i c i a l s : From the government's point of view t h i s arrangement provided a r e s e r v o i r of servants of many-sided competence, from the o f f i c i a l ' s i t meant burdensome, sometimes c o s t l y tasks to perform, but also opportunities f o r wider reaches of connection, of i n f l u e n c e , and perhaps of p r o f i t . ^ I f i t seems strange that a p r o f e s s i o n a l s o l d i e r should be appointed to a p o s i t i o n where he would be required to check costs and amounts of food, accommodat i o n for Court f i g u r e s , and entertainments for v i s i t i n g personages, Croft's appointment can probably be explained i n the l i g h t of the above quotation. Although nominally Comptroller, C r o f t served numerous other purposes, and  was  p a r t i c u l a r l y conscientious i n h i s attendance at meetings of the P r i v y C o u n c i l .  79  There i s l i t t l e doubt that he made use of h i s p o s i t i o n to widen h i s connections and i n f l u e n c e , and thereby p r o f i t himself, but i t i s doubtful whether one can s t a t e , as Miss Woodworth does, that he " p r a c t i c e d g r a f t and placed 25 his own i n t e r e s t s above those of the queen."  Throughout h i s period as Comp-  t r o l l e r he frequently r e f e r r e d to h i s poverty and need f o r further grants from E l i z a b e t h , and i f he was, i n f a c t , s t e a l i n g from the Household, i t cannot have been on a large enough scale to be p r o f i t a b l e or to incur the wrath of the Queen. Although Burghley attempted to keep a l i d on the ever-increasing expenses of the Household, he had l i t t l e success.  This was p a r t l y because the o f f i c e r s  of the Household held only loose c o n t r o l over the number of servants  that  abounded, but also because the Queen appeared to have small regard f o r l i m i t 26 ing her expenses i n any way.  One of the major causes of increased Household  charges was the large number of progresses made by E l i z a b e t h , which n e c e s s i t a ted e x t r a expense not only f o r t r a n s p o r t a t i o n but f o r food and s e r v i c e . accompanied the Queen on many of these progresses,  Croft  as when she v i s i t e d Worces-  ter i n August, 1575, escorted by a large retinue of noblemen, bishops, and l a d i e s - i n - w a i t i n g , plus t h e i r servants and members of the Household s t a f f gen27 e r a l l y employed at Court.  I t i s w e l l known that e n t e r t a i n i n g E l i z a b e t h on  her progresses could e a s i l y be c r i p p l i n g l y expensive, but not so obvious that expenses must have been correspondingly  high f o r the Queen. As Comptroller  of the Household, Croft would be i n charge of such expenses, together  with  K n o l l y s , but f i n a l a u t h o r i t y f o r providing expenses would have rested with Burghley.  As f o r d a i l y expenses at Court, a l i s t showing the amount provided  for members of the Household i n 1576, together with the sums of money a c t u a l l y 28 spent, i l l u s t r a t e s a wide discrepancy. For example, the Queen h e r s e l f was  80  e n t i t l e d to have a d i e t c o s t i n g X l , 2 8 8 . 8 . 9 ^ per year, when, i n f a c t , the ,  eventual cost was«L 2,509 .18 .4,  29  an increase o f almost one hundred per-cent.  C r o f t was allowed Z494.2.2. but s p e n t X 5 8 5 . 1 4 . 9 ^ and the rates of d i e t o f other members o f the Household show s i m i l a r increases.  As Comptroller, C r o f t  should probably have attempted to put a curb on spending, and there are i n d i cations that he at l e a s t made the e f f o r t , but there were l i m i t s to h i s powers, p a r t i c u l a r l y i f he d i d not wish to offend the Queen, and Household costs continued to r i s e throughout the century. Part of the correspondence which has survived i s a remembrance issued by C r o f t to Burghley, concerning Household expenses and w r i t t e n on December 7, 31  1583.  I t i s of i n t e r e s t as i t provides an example of some of the problems  f a c i n g C r o f t , and shows that he was concerned with r i s i n g expenses, although he d i d not know how he could deal with them. Among the reasons f o r increased c o s t s , Croft l i s t e d the keeping by o f f i c e r s and m i n i s t e r s of more servants and pages than necessary, many o f whom "hang upon the B u t t e r i e barre, wasting the fragments which should be geaven to the poore."  Because wages were so low,  servants were forced to s t e a l from the k i t c h e n , and also "everie o f f i c e that can help with bred Drinke F u e l l and lyghtes, are corrupted." that, to redress these d i s o r d e r s , wages and allowances reasonable  C r o f t suggested  should be r a i s e d to a  l e v e l , p a r t i c u l a r l y as he was already supplying extraordinary allow-  ances to some members of the Household.  Costs had also been r i s i n g because  "the pryces of v i c t u a l l s and incydents are encreased above ten or twelve  thou-  sand pownds by the yeare," and he suggested that a new book of allowances be drawn up, r e f l e c t i n g the increased c o s t s .  The remembrance i n d i c a t e s that  Croft knew what the problems were, but i t i s doubtful that he could have dealt w i t h any of them by himself, and c e r t a i n l y could not be held to blame because  81  of Elizabeth's extravagances or r i s i n g prices i n general. One of the f i r s t positions to which C r o f t was appointed a f t e r being made Comptroller  and a P r i v y C o u n c i l l o r was as a member of the Council i n the  Marches o f Wales.  As mentioned i n Chapter Three, Strype l i s t s Croft as being  3' a member of the Council, together with S i r Nicholas Arnold, as e a r l y as 1551, but even i f Strype i s c o r r e c t , Croft's appointment at t h i s e a r l y date would 33 have been of short duration.  His appointment, on May 27, 1570,  f i v e months a f t e r he had been made Comptroller,  less than  indicates that E l i z a b e t h  valued Croft as much for the advice he could give elsewhere as on the Council. The C o u n c i l , which sat i n Ludlow, i n Shropshire, was, as Penry Williams observes, "... part of the remarkable Tudor p o l i c y of c r e a t i n g regional admini34 s t r a t i o n s w i t h i n England and Wales." created to administer  Like the Council i n the North, i t was  a d i f f i c u l t and r e l a t i v e l y i s o l a t e d area, and had j u r i s -  d i c t i o n over a l l of Wales, as w e l l as the counties of Shropshire, Worcester, Gloucester, and Monmouth.  Hereford,  The Council had wide and somewhat vague  powers, both c r i m i n a l and c i v i l , and could enforce p a r t i c u l a r aspects of the 35 Crown s p o l i c y . Later, i n 1586, i t s a u t h o r i t y was to be r e s t r i c t e d , a move which pleased many of the C o u n c i l l o r s , i n c l u d i n g C r o f t , who favoured l i m i t a 36 t i o n of i t s powers.  Croft continued as a member of the Council through the  37 1570's and 80's his  and was a p a r t i c u l a r l y i n f l u e n t i a l f i g u r e , both because of  importance i n n a t i o n a l l i f e and as one of the leading gentlemen i n the  a f f a i r s of Herefordshire. Croft's importance i n the county can be determined not only by the o f f i c e s he enjoyed himself, but also by those which were held by h i s friends and r e l a t i v e s .  Not only did Croft s i t for every parliament as the senior mem-  ber f o r the county from 1562 onwards, but various r e l a t i v e s were also elected  82  as members.  These included h i s son, Edward, i n 1584 and 1586, as M.P. for  Leominster, h i s son-in-law, John Scudamore, i n 1572, 1584, 1586, and 1589, as junior member f o r the county, and a cousin, Fabian P h i l i p p e s i n 1572, as juni o r member f o r Leominster.  As w e l l , James Warnecombe, junior member f o r the  s h i r e i n 1562 and senior member of the C i t y of Hereford i n 1572, was r e l a t e d 38 to S i r James through h i s w i f e , and Thomas Wigmore, a close f r i e n d , was 39 twice member f o r Leominster, i n 1584 and 1586.  John Scudamore, the uncle  of Croft's son-in-law of the same name, had been S h e r i f f of the county i n 1553,^ and i n 1565 was Steward of Hereford C i t y .  He was a member of the 42  Council of Wales i n 1560 and probably i n 1570 and 1578,  although i t i s not  c l e a r whether i t i s the elder John Scudamore or h i s nephew who i s referred to i n the two l a t t e r years.  Fabian P h i l i p p e s was l i s t e d as "one of the j u s t i c e s  of North Wales" i n 1586, and a member of the Council of Wales i n the same 43 year.  Thus, through a widely spread network of r e l a t i o n s h i p s , Croft could  w e l l be said to be the most important man i n Herefordshire i n the 1570's and 80's, and h i s influence must have been strong throughout the area of the Welsh Marches . Although Croft sat i n the House of Commons f o r a span of almost t h i r t y years, the s c a r c i t y of records makes i t almost impossible to discover i n what ways he was involved i n parliamentary business.  However, i n 1572, he spoke  on the B i l l to reform the Book of Common Prayer, and supported C e c i l , who  de-  clared that matters of r e l i g i o n should be l e f t to the d i s c r e t i o n of princes. Croft added that "... since we acknowledge her [ i e . Elizabeth] to be supream head, we are not i n these petty matters to run before the b a l l , which to do, 44 and t h e r e i n to offend, were great f o l l y . "  I t i s quite l i k e l y that Croft had  received i n s t r u c t i o n s from the Queen to inform the Commons that she disapproved  83  of parliament meddling w i t h what she considered her prerogative, or the s t a t e ment may r e v e a l Croft's own views.  In the same parliament, Croft was also  named a member of a committee appointed to look into the s i t u a t i o n of the Queen of Scots, which r e s u l t e d i n a b i l l being passed by both Houses, but 45 quashed by E l i z a b e t h , who "would not s u f f e r i t to pass into a law."  Be-  sides these mentions of C r o f t , there i s l i t t l e to t e l l what part he played i n parliament.  His appointment to the committee i s s i g n i f i c a n t , though, be-  cause fourteen years l a t e r he was named one of the commissioners to t r y Mary Stuart at Fotheringay C a s t l e . Mary had been a constant embarrassment to E l i z a b e t h ever since she had f l e d to England i n 1568, a f t e r being forced to abdicate i n favour of her two year o l d son, James.  The discovery of Mary's i m p l i c a t i o n i n various plots  against E l i z a b e t h brought matters to a head, and the conspiracy of 1586--the s o - c a l l e d Babington P l o t - - was her f i n a l undoing.  The d i s c l o s u r e s of the  conspirators caused a commission to be appointed to t r y Mary, which assembled 46 at Fotheringay on October 12, 1586. ing  At f i r s t , Mary refused to appear, deny-  that the commissioners had any r i g h t to t r y her, and saying that she  "was 47  a free p r i n c e , borne a quene, and, t h e r f o r e , not subjecte to any but to God." Nevertheless, she eventually appeared and her t r i a l continued.  The outcome,  considering the mass of evidence against her, was a foregone conclusion, and when the commissioners reassembled  on October 25, the death sentence was given.  E l i z a b e t h had a h o r r o r , however, of ordering the death of a f e l l o w r u l e r , and delayed p u t t i n g the sentence i n t o e f f e c t for as long as p o s s i b l e . On November 14 she had r e p l i e d to parliament that she ... could be w e l l pleased to forbear taking of her blood; i f by any other means to be devised, by the Great Council of t h i s realm, the safety of her maj.'s person and govt, might be preserved, without danger of r u i n and d e s t r u c t i o n . ^  84  E l i z a b e t h could not temporize i n d e f i n i t e l y , however, and eventually, on February 7, Mary mounted the s c a f f o l d at Fotheringay  Castle.  Although she  had  signed the warrant for Mary's execution, E l i z a b e t h was distraught when i t was put i n t o e f f e c t , and vented her anger on W i l l i a m Davison, the second Secretary of State, whom she had t r i e d and, for a short time, imprisoned. Davison's t r i a l i n March, none of the Queen's ministers who  At  had sat i n judg-  ment on Mary and signed the l e t t e r s that had accompanied the warrant f o r her execution appeared, with the exception of C r o f t , who  had, as S i r Harris 49  Nicholas s t a t e s , "the modesty and good sense to say l i t t l e on the  occasion."  Elizabeth's anger d i d not l a s t for long and, w i t h the exception of Davison, none of her m i n i s t e r s suffered f o r t h e i r part i n the t r i a l and execution of Mary Stuart. Although the above account covers some of Croft's p r i n c i p a l a c t i v i t i e s of the 1570's and 80's, h i s duties were not confined to these.  The Acts of  the P r i v y Council show that he was a conscientious attender at meetings, and a large number of l e t t e r s sent from the Council bear h i s signature.  His ad-  v i c e was also apparently sought on a f f a i r s i n I r e l a n d , and the Spanish Ambassador wrote to h i s master i n November, 1582,  that C r o f t was appointed to a  commission to enquire i n t o I r i s h a f f a i r s , w h i l e , i n A p r i l , 1583, a servant of Croft's was  sent to Ireland to f i n d out whether the r e b e l , Desmond, was  w i l l i n g to submit to Ormond.^''" Although much of Croft's time must have been taken up with s i m i l a r d u t i e s , as w e l l as with h i s o f f i c i a l r e s p o n s i b i l i t i e s as Comptroller, there i s l i t t l e to show that h i s remuneration was  particularly  great, and by f a r the l a r g e s t amount of correspondence of the period concerning  Croft has to do with h i s e f f o r t s at g e t t i n g favours from the Queen, and  with the pension which he was r e c e i v i n g a l l the while from Spain.  85  As Comptroller  and a P r i v y C o u n c i l l o r , the opportunities open to Croft  were f a r greater than they had been previously, but the amount of money he needed f o r h i s p o s i t i o n at Court was good terms with Burghley, who  also n e c e s s a r i l y greater.  He kept on  had the power to reward those he saw most s u i -  ted, and several times asked favours of him.  On J u l y 14, 1578,  for example,  he requested that Burghley remember h i s s u i t for a grant of lands having an annual value of twenty-five pounds, and reminded Burghley of h i s long ser52 vices .  His p e t i t i o n to the Queen had probably been presented e a r l i e r by  Lady C r o f t , as there i s note taken i n the same year of "...  such debts and  bonds as S i r James C r o f t " [ s i c ] and his friends j o i n t l y stand i n danger o f . " ' 5  As was  the case w i t h a majority of the c o u r t i e r s , Croft maintained a good  r e l a t i o n s h i p with E l i z a b e t h by g i v i n g her a New Year's g i f t each year, which was o c c a s i o n a l l y reciprocated.  Thus, i n 1578,  the Queen was  given by Lady  Croft "a feyer cushyn embrawdered with s i l k e of sundry c o l l a r s , with t h i story of I c o r u s , " ^ while the f o l l o w i n g year, Croft's wife presented "a 5  peticote of carnation satten, enbrawderid with flowers of s i l k e of sondry collours."  5 5  In r e t u r n , Croft was 56  bowls from the Queen.  given a g i l t plate and, i n 1579,  two  gilt  The exchange of these g i f t s indicates that Croft  was  i n favour at Court and, while the presentation of g i f t s had become a formali t y , the f a i l u r e of a c o u r t i e r to remember the Queen with a c o s t l y present at the beginning of each new year would doubtless be a black mark against The Queen was  him.  p e t i t i o n e d again by Croft i n 1583, when he asked for a  grant of land "to r e l i e v e h i s present wante of n e c e s s i t e . " c l e a r whether or not h i s request was  57  While i t i s not  granted, he did receive a monopoly  l i c e n s e to export grain from Norfolk to I r e l a n d .  This must have been ex-  tremely p r o f i t a b l e , as there were several complaints made to Burghley about  86  the cost of grain i n Ireland having increased "by reason of exportation under 58 Mr. Comptroller's l i c e n s e . "  On December 14, 1585, S i r W i l l i a m Heydon wrote  to Walsingham from Norfolk of the "... hard dealings of Mr. Comptroller's subs t i t u t e f o r concealed lands, who had more regard for h i s own benefit than f o r 59 Her Majesty's s e r v i c e , "  and t h i s o f f i c e must have provided a handsome income  Besides these favours shown to C r o f t , he was also allowed, i n January, 1583, to share an award f o r the wardship and marriage of the daughters of Anthony 60 Bowrne (or Browne),  an arrangement s i m i l a r to the two wardships he had been  given i n the 1560's.  As i n the former instance, one of Croft's c h i l d r e n was  married to one of h i s wards;  i n t h i s case, Edward Croft wed Ann Browne, thus  bringing her fortune into the Croft f a m i l y . ^  1  I t i s apparent, therefore, that  S i r James remained i n good favour at Court, and that he was able to procure a healthy income by reason of h i s f r i e n d s h i p with important o f f i c i a l s and with the Queen.  However, h i s income cannot have been as high as he wished, because  he continued to receive a pension from Spain throughout the e n t i r e period he was Comptroller of the Household. Being a Spanish pensioner, Croft must have f e l t a c o n f l i c t of l o y a l t y on occasions, but the money he received from Spain was not of the order to make him a t r a i t o r ,  and numerous complaints from the Spanish Ambassador show that  he sometimes had a d i f f i c u l t time g e t t i n g any information out of C r o f t .  How-  ever, as soon as he had been made Comptroller, Croft indicated that " i n whatever thing he can honestly serve your Majesty [ i e . P h i l l i p I I ] he w i l l do 62 so."  Perhaps i t i s important to emphasize the word "honestly" here, as i t  q u a l i f i e s the opinion one might otherwise receive that Croft was e n t i r e l y a Spanish puppet.  There are numerous instances reported of Guerau de Spes, the  Spanish Ambassador, attempting to induce Croft and other pensioners to i n f l u -  87  ence events to the b e n e f i t of Spain. ted  I n March, 1570, for example, he attemp-  to persuade Croft to delay the opening of trade r e l a t i o n s between England 63  and Portugal,  and t h i s subject continued to be a major point of i s s u e .  C r o f t was not, of course, the only Council member r e c e i v i n g money from Spain, and others included such men of importance as Sussex, C e c i l , and the E a r l of 64 Leicester,  beside whom Croft would have appeared quite i n s i g n i f i c a n t .  Nevertheless, Croft's acceptance of Spanish money i s not admirable, from a twentieth century viewpoint, even i f h i s p o s i t i o n can be blamed on a penurious monarch, or a system which allowed men such as Croft l i t t l e choice but to accept money from Spain i f they wished to continue to hold o f f i c e .  In 1579,  Croft t o l d Bernadino de Mendoza, who had replaced de Spes, that "... i f h i s Majesty w i l l not help him i t w i l l not be possible f o r him to remain at Court, 65 he being at the end of h i s resources," which Mendoza assured the King was 66 r e a l l y the case, "and not mere vapouring."  While Mendoza's statements must  always be regarded w i t h a degree of s u s p i c i o n , i n t h i s instance he may not have been f a r from the t r u t h .  Croft's constant i t e r a t i o n s of penury may be  exaggerated, but i t i s quite probable that he was i n frequent need of money, even i f he was not i n quite such d i r e d i s t r e s s as he t r i e d to make Mendoza believe.  As the s i t u a t i o n deteriorated i n the 1580's between England and  Spain, Croft had to be more c a r e f u l , and Mendoza reported, on A p r i l 1, 1582, that Croft "... has been almost dumb w i t h me f o r some months past, and has 67 t o l d me nothing of importance." However, Croft apparently desperately needed the money he was g e t t i n g from Spain, and he may even have accepted a 68 further pension of two thousand crowns a year from France.  Under the c i r -  cumstances b r i e f l y described above, one must regard Croft's p o s i t i o n as a C o u n c i l l o r with some s u s p i c i o n , as i t i s i n e v i t a b l e that he would act occas i o n a l l y i n the i n t e r e s t s of Spain rather than England i f he wished to con-  88  tinue r e c e i v i n g h i s pension.  A l s o , i t i s possible that accusations which were  l a t e r to be l e v e l l e d at C r o f t , a f t e r he had taken part i n negotiations with the Spanish before the s a i l i n g of the Armada, had some basis i n f a c t , although i t i s u n l i k e l y h i s accusers r e a l i z e d how long Croft had depended on Spain f o r an income.  One can only say, c h a r i t a b l y , that Croft needed the money, which  he should have been able to get from the Queen, and that the information he gave Spain, i f not u s e l e s s , was seldom of great value. Although Croft was undoubtedly a Spanish pensioner, t h i s fact does not appear to have counted against him, and he continued to enjoy the friendship of i n f l u e n t i a l men.  I t i s possible that i t was not r e a l i z e d that Croft was  i n Spain's pay, although t h i s i s u n l i k e l y considering C e c i l ' s widespread information network.  However, i n June, 1574, a Roger Bodenham wrote to C e c i l  of "... a nest of Spaniards who do nothing else but spy what i s done and what i s intended to be done, and give advertisements thereof," but added the names "... of two men whom he may make h i s assured f r i e n d s , and who be worthy to be 69 embraced and made much of," Mr. Dyer.  one of them being S i r James C r o f t , the other a  This was probably S i r Edward Dyer, whose patrons included Leicester  and C e c i l , and who became the Queen's personal f a v o u r i t e a f t e r the f a l l of Hatton.^  I f there was a connection between Dyer and C r o f t , he could have  been a most i n f l u e n t i a l f r i e n d . Another of Croft's friends was S i r Thomas Smith, who had been made a member of the Council at about the same time as C r o f t , and who had been sent as an ambassador to France i n 1572 to discuss the marriage of Alencon and E l i z a beth.^  1  In that year he wrote a number of l e t t e r s to C r o f t , almost e n t i r e l y  of a personal nature, i n one of which he mentions h i s desire "... to be at home w i t h you to eat a good piece of court beef and mustard, a cowsheel, and  89  a piece of l i n g and sodden oysters."  72  Mary Dewar w r i t e s that Croft was,  at 73  the time, contemplating marrying o f f one of h i s daughters to Smith's son, and the f r i e n d s h i p between the two men a considerable period of time.  appears to have been one formed over  Smith's other intimates of longstanding were  Burghley and John Thynne, and i t i s surely carping of Miss Dewar to r e f e r to 74 them as "hardly a gay s p a r k l i n g t r i o , " even i f the d e s c r i p t i o n f i t s . Dr. Dee,  the astrologer and mathematician, and a man  frequently consul-  ted by the Queen, also was c l o s e l y connected with C r o f t . Although Dee  had  been born i n Mortlake, near London, h i s family t i e s were with Knighton, i n Radnorshire,  some f i f t e e n miles from Croft C a s t l e .  Deacon, w r i t e s that Dee "maintained life," shire.  7 5  His biographer,  Richard  h i s l i n k s with Wales throughout h i s  and i t would appear that the l i n k s extended from Wales i n t o HerefordIn October, 1574, Dee asked h i s patron, Lord Burghley, to obtain for  him the muniments of Wigmore C a s t l e , Croft's county residence.  7 6  which was even c l o s e r than Knighton to  In the same year, Mistress Scudamore had helped  by asking the Queen to grant him a p o s i t i o n at W i n c h e s t e r ,  77  Dee  and the close  t i e s which Dee had both with C r o f t and Mary Scudamore can be seen by the f o l l o w i n g entry i n h i s d i a r y for 1581: June 10th, b a p t i s a t a a meredie hor. 5% Katharina. Mr. Packington of the court, my Lady K a t a r i n C r o f t s , wife to S i r James C r o f t s , Mr. C o n t r o l l e r of the Quene's household, Mystres Mary Skydmor of the P r i v i e Chamber, and cosen to the Quene, by theyr deputies christened Katharin Dee.^8 Mary Scudamore was  a s i s t e r of the John Scudamore whose wardship Croft had  obtained i n 1561, and who  had become h i s son-in-law  the same year, and l a t e r  79 a Gentleman Usher to the Queen.  Both John and Mary Scudamore would thus .  have had c l o s e access to the Queen, and have been able to promote t h e i r k i n s -  90  man's cause. Croft's range of contacts i n d i c a t e a number of ways i n which he could have applied i n f l u e n c e at Court.  Although i t i s not possible to d i s c e r n a l l  of C r o f t ' s patrons and f r i e n d s , the number of i n f l u e n t i a l people he could c a l l upon for help appears to have been widening with time.  The E a r l of L e i c e s t e r  had been of assistance to Croft as e a r l y as 1561, but i t i s probable that he had given h i s kinsman help even before t h i s date.  In an u n o f f i c i a l , but very  important, c a p a c i t y , Mary and John Scudamore may have been as important contacts as any of the great C o u n c i l l o r s , such as Burghley.  So, a l s o , may John  Dee, who had great influence over the Queen at various times.  Croft himself  would have been a u s e f u l contact for such men as Dyer and Smith, and they would probably have counted on him for assistance as much as he counted them.  on  Throughout the 1570's and 80's, there i s l i t t l e doubt that Croft used  h i s connections whenever possible to attempt to b o l s t e r h i s apparently inadequate fortunes and to remain at E l i z a b e t h ' s Court, the centre of a l l power i n England.  91  CHAPTER VI NEGOTIATIONS  WITH SPAIN  (1587-1590)  The r e l a t i o n s h i p between England and .Spain, which had been a close one during the e a r l y h a l f of the century, began a steady d e t e r i o r a t i o n s h o r t l y a f t e r E l i z a b e t h came to the throne, and reached i t s nadir i n 1588 with the defeat of the Spanish Armada.  Reasons for t h i s are not hard to f i n d .  France,  which was kept divided by r e l i g i o u s and p o l i t i c a l f a c t i o n s , was no longer a threat to E n g l i s h s e c u r i t y , and Spain had become the champion of Catholicism i n Europe, and of Mary Stuart i n Scotland.  The imprisonment and eventual exe-  c u t i o n of Mary offered P h i l i p the opportunity f o r a r e l i g i o u s crusade against the h e r e t i c a l E n g l i s h , and E l i z a b e t h and her advisers thought i t p o l i t i c to prepare f o r the worst by seeking b e t t e r r e l a t i o n s w i t h France.  To t h i s  end,  E l i z a b e t h had appeared to consider an a l l i a n c e with France by suggesting marriage f i r s t with the Duke of Anjou, i n 1570, and l a t e r w i t h Catherine Medici's youngest son, the Duke of Alencon.  de  Although neither plan came to  anything, and were probably not intended t o , they had served the purpose of securing f r i e n d l i e r r e l a t i o n s between the two c o u n t r i e s .  Spain, on the other  hand, continued to foment p l o t s , and to ensure the support of some i n f l u e n t i a l men by providing them with pensions.  One of the most important causes of  antagonism was England's growing encroachment on Spain's e r s t w h i l e monopolist i c trade w i t h the New World, w i t h the e x p l o i t s of such men as Hawkins and Drake i n c r e a s i n g l y i n f u r i a t i n g the Spanish.  In the Netherlands, too, England  and Spain faced one another w i t h a sense of mounting tension, and from 1585 an expeditionary force had been maintained t r o l l e d i n the Low Countries.  i n the towns which England con-  Under such conditions i t appeared i n e v i t a b l e :  92  that a major c o n f l i c t between Spain and England was only a matter of time, and that l i t t l e could be done to h a l t the coming confrontation.  However, such a  war was not desired by a l l of Elizabeth's c o u n c i l l o r s , and e f f o r t s to keep the peace were attempted throughout the 1580's.  The most serious of these attempts  was made less than a year before Spain sent the Armada down the English Chann e l , when a group of commissioners were sent to the Netherlands to negotiate w i t h the Spanish to seek a settlement f o r peace. E l i z a b e t h h e r s e l f probably feared taking the f i n a l step which would lead to war, and hoped u n t i l the l a s t moment that i t could be evaded.  War w i t h  Spain would be c o s t l y not only i n terms of paying for troops and equipment, but would also mean the end of the B r i t i s h c l o t h trade w i t h the Netherlands, which provided England with an important source of revenue.  However, the suc-  cesses of the Duke of Parma i n 1584 and 1586 i n the Low Countries, w i t h the r e s u l t i n g loss of trade, caused E l i z a b e t h to send an army to the Netherlands under the leadership of the E a r l of L e i c e s t e r , her current f a v o u r i t e . L e i c e s t e r ' s incompetence, plus the heavy d r a i n on resources, explain why E l i z a b e t h was w i l l i n g to seek peace by 1587, and i n t h i s she was by Parma.  encouraged  I t appeared that he was spurring on E n g l i s h hopes f o r peace i n an  e f f o r t to gain time while P h i l i p b u i l t up the navy, i n which case the negotiations would have been nothing more than a f a r c e .  Nevertheless, E l i z a b e t h was  w i l l i n g to continue with the peace t a l k s , probably because she had been f a l s e l y persuaded that Parma had the power to conclude a t r e a t y .  As the end of 1587  approached, a commission was selected to be sent to the Low Countries to negot i a t e w i t h Parma, and f o r almost a year the t a l k s dragged on to t h e i r hopeless, and pre-ordained, conclusion.''' Although E l i z a b e t h probably favoured a peace p o l i c y , many of her P r i v y  93  Council were opposed to any form of peace-making.  CHief among these was  L e i c e s t e r , who was i n charge of m i l i t a r y operations i n the Netherlands, and who stood a better chance of making a reputation i f the war was continued than i f a peace were signed.  Walsingham, the Queen's p r i n c i p a l secretary,  c o n t i n u a l l y urged E l i z a b e t h to oppose Spain v i g o r o u s l y , but h i s warnings had 2 l i t t l e effect.  The c h i e f proponent of peace was probably Burghley, although  i t i s u n l i k e l y that he was any more ardent than C r o f t , even i f h i s influence was greater. Both Burghley and Croft had been j o i n t l y involved i n negotiations for peace since mid-1586. A l e t t e r from Parma to Burghley on June 23, 1586, mentioned  that Andrea de Loo, a merchant who acted as an intermediary  between the E n g l i s h and Spanish, had "... put before me what more he thought needful for me to understand of the continuation of the good i n c l i n a t i o n which 3 you show towards peace."  The Queen's i n c l i n a t i o n being towards peace, i t i s  not s u r p r i s i n g that she should seize the opportunity offered to deal d i r e c t l y with Parma i n 1587, and that some of the leading advocates of a peace p o l i c y should be put on the commission which was appointed.  Although a few of her  advisers, p a r t i c u l a r l y L e i c e s t e r and Walsingham, feared that E l i z a b e t h might pursue peace to the neglect of the defense of England, t h e i r advice was i g nored.  On September 12, 1587, Bernardino de Mendoza, the Spanish ambassador  i n England, wrote to P h i l i p that "the Commissioners the Queen was sending to Flanders were being hurried o f f , " and that they included the e a r l s of Derby and H e r t f o r d , Lord Cobham, Dr. Dale (Master of Requests), John Herbert (doc-  4  tor of the Court of A d m i r a l t y ) , as w e l l as the Comptroller, S i r James C r o f t . Croft's presence on the commission was an obvious one.  During a l l the  years he had been on the C o u n c i l , and even before 1570, he had been a Spanish pensioner, and had been the most ardent proponent of a peace p o l i c y .  His  94  appointment by E l i z a b e t h was no doubt made, as Conyers Read suggests, because she believed that Croft would do h i s utmost to achieve peace.  5  Not only had  he been involved w i t h Burghley i n preliminary n e g o t i a t i o n s , but a cousin of his,  named Bodenham, was i n the service of Parma,  and an Edward M o r r i s , de-  scribed as "Mr. C o n t r o l l e r ' s man," acted as an intermediary between Bodenham 7  8 and C r o f t .  Parma had "good l i k i n g of Mr. C o n t r o l l e r , "  and kept i n close con-  tact with him through de Loo, who had been persuaded by Croft to deal w i t h  9 Parma and to ensure him of the Queen's desire for peace.  The other commis-  sioners eventually included the E a r l of Derby, Lord Cobham, and Dr. Dale, as de Mendoza had l i s t e d e a r l i e r , but not the E a r l of Hertford or John Herbert. The f i f t h member was o r i g i n a l l y S i r Amias Paulet, but, f o r some reason, he was l a t e r replaced by Dr. John Rogers. ^ 1  Derby, appointed c h i e f commissioner, was  l i t t l e more than a figurehead, and Cobham was an o l d f r i e n d of Burghley's. Both of these men, as w e l l as C r o f t , were P r i v y C o u n c i l l o r s .  Dr. Dale was a  c i v i l i a n who had been ambassador i n France f o r some years and who had sat on a number of important r o y a l commissions, i n c l u d i n g that which had met to t r y Mary S t u a r t .  1 1  John Rogers was a brother of Daniel Rogers, Clerk of the Coun12  c i l , and had been employed previously on diplomatic missions abroad. of  None  the commissioners, with the exception of C r o f t , was noted as an enthusias-  t i c p a c i f i s t , and Croft was kept i n check by the two experienced men on the commission, Dale and Rogers, who had had s u f f i c i e n t experience previously to understand the problems they faced. Elizabeth's i n s t r u c t i o n s to the commissioners made i t c l e a r that they were to do l i t t l e on t h e i r own i n i t i a t i v e , but were to r e f e r back to England for  directions.  Although the Queen gave d i r e c t i o n s that the commissioners  were to use a l l d i s c r e t i o n "... as s h a l l , w i t h regard of her honour tend most  95  speedily . . .  to the conclusion of a good and sound peace,"  p a r t i c u l a r , i n s t r u c t i o n s were sent from England.  i n almost every  Croft was to discover l a t e r  that i t was f a t a l to attempt to act on one's own i n i t i a t i v e .  Above a l l , the  Commission was to make sure that i t s Spanish counterpart had f u l l a u t h o r i t y to conclude a peace. Although the commissioners had departed from England on February 26,  1588,  the negotiations d i d not get under way f o r another three months, the intervening period being occupied w i t h wranglings over where the conference should be held.  E l i z a b e t h wanted the meeting to take place i n Ostend, whe re the commis-  sioners had landed, but P h i l i p favoured Antwerp.  A f t e r much pointless argu-  ment, during which the names of Bruges and Ghent, among other c i t i e s , were suggested, e v e n t u a l l y the town of Bourbourg was chosen as a compromise, and 14 the Commission proceeded there on May 23. as i t may seem;  The delay was not as pointless  at l e a s t , not on the part of the Spanish.  In March, Parma  had w r i t t e n to P h i l i p that i t was the general f e e l i n g that i t might be a good idea to conclude a peace i n the Low Countries, i n which case "... we should not jeopardize the Armada which your Majesty has prepared." ^ 1  However, he  intended to delay the E n g l i s h commissioners as long as p o s s i b l e , and to confer with them u n t i l the Armada was ready to s a i l : ... I w i l l not, u n t i l I am obliged, d e s i s t from the negotiations, so that i n case the Armada does not come, or any other unforseen accident should prevent the p r i n c i p a l enterprise from being c a r r i e d out, your Majesty may be able to choose the course you think f i t . I g r e a t l y doubt, however, being able to e n t e r t a i n the E n g l i s h so long as w i l l be necessary f o r such a contingency as t h i s , as I am not able to produce for them a s p e c i a l power from your Majesty, which, as u s u a l , they appear to desire before they w i l l enter into the d i s c u s s i o n of the main points. I t i s quite p o s s i b l e , therefore, that they may break o f f the negotiations for t h i s reason....  96  In s p i t e of Parma's delaying t a c t i c s , however, and h i s i n a b i l i t y to produce the a u t h o r i t y which would permit him to conclude a peace, the English commissioners were prepared to s e t t l e down at the conference t a b l e . Before the Commission was ready to confer w i t h the Spanish--in f a c t , before i t had even a r r i v e d i n the Netherlands--a preliminary, and t o t a l l y unauthroized meeting had already occurred between the Spanish and S i r James Croft.  Writing to the Queen on February 16, C r o f t had intimated that he i n -  tended "to have t h i s colloquy hastened," because he was "throughly [ suaded that he [ i . e . Parma] g r e a t l y d e s i r e t h peace."'''  7  S L C  ]  per-  When the Commission  departed f o r Ostend on February 26, Croft was not present, having been, as 18he s a i d , "detained at Dover by an accident and then by the weather."  In  consequence of the wind, he had s a i l e d f o r the Spanish-held town of Dunkirk, where he had been received by the Governor, r o y a l l y entertained, and sent to 19 r e j o i n h i s colleagues two days l a t e r . While at Dunkirk, Croft had been feasted by the Spanish, "... w i t h manifest tokens of t h e i r d e s i r e to have a 20 peace,"  and had, no doubt, been convinced even further of h i s b e l i e f s i n  t h i s regard.  The rough weather, which necessitated a landing at Dunkirk,  appears most f o r t u i t o u s f o r C r o f t , p a r t i c u l a r l y considering h i s previously dec l a r e d i n t e n t i o n of meeting w i t h the Spanish to hasten the peace negotiations, and h i s actions must have angered h i s fellow commissioners. In f a c t , Croft's high-handed  behaviour continued to be a source of annoy-  ance to h i s colleagues, p a r t i c u l a r l y as he appeared to think of himself as the only one capable of producing a peace formula.  Robert C e c i l , w r i t i n g to h i s  father, noted of Croft's a r r i v a l i n Ostend from Dunkirk that "Mr. C o n t r o l l e r i s i n h i s h e a l t h but crazy, though not s i c k , t h i s having proved a cold journey 21 for h i s o l d years." I t i s important to remember that Croft was, i n 1588,  97  seventy years o l d , a fact which might e x p l a i n , i f not excuse, some of h i s unusual a c t i o n s .  Through March and A p r i l , reports continued  to be sent by other  of the commissioners to Burghley and to E l i z a b e t h , complaining cooperativeness  and h i s overbearing manner.  of Croft's un-  On A p r i l 17, E l i z a b e t h was  to w r i t e to Derby and Cobham to order them to l e t C r o f t "...  understand  forced how  g r e a t l y we are offended with t h i s h i s manner of d e a l i n g , " and to t e l l him "to forbear to use any singular courses;  but j o i n with you i n common concurrency  22 according to your i n s t r u c t i o n s . . . . "  Complaints made against Croft included  that he had termed the governor of Ostend, S i r John Conway, a f o o l , that he had licensed members of the garrison to meet w i t h the enemy, and that he had 23 meddled i n the government of the town. S i r James had managed to offend the other commissioners by threatening to charge h i s colleagues i f the peace did 24 not go forward,  and had boasted that "... 25  peace alone, i t had been concluded."  i f he had the dealing of t h i s  Elizabeth's admonitions to Croft leave  no doubt that h i s e f f o r t s were unappreciated i n England, and that he was sidered more of a hindrance than a help to the commissioners.  con-  However, h i s  i n c r e a s i n g l y common references to the advantages which would accrue i f he c a r r i e d on the negotiations by himself, and the i n c r e a s i n g l y b e l l i g e r e n t tone he was adopting towards h i s colleagues, make h i s subsequent a c t i o n easy to foretell.  On A p r i l 28, the commissioners, with the exception of C r o f t , signed  a l e t t e r to the P r i v y Council r e p o r t i n g that "Mr. C o n t r o l l e r i s t h i s day his own voluntary w i l l ) gone to the Duke of Parma," propound h i s own  where he intended  (of to  terms of peace to the Duke.  Considering the favours shown to Croft previously by the Spanish, Croft might w e l l have believed h i s plan had some chance of success, but i t was tremely naive not to r e a l i z e that Parma may  ex-  j u s t have been using him to s t r e t c h  98  out E n g l i s h hopes for an e a r l y peace.  C r o f t , of course, had no a u t h o r i t y to  conclude a peace t r e a t y with Parma, but that d i d not stop him from putting forward a l i s t of a r t i c l e s he considered necessary before t a l k s could begin w i t h himself and the other commissioners.  These included a s i g h t of Parma's com-  mission from the King to conclude a peace, a cessation of arms, a t o l e r a t i o n of protestantism w i t h i n Holland and Zeeland, and ten other points r e f e r r i n g 27 to such considerations as trade and hostages.  Ignoring h i s f e l l o w com28  missioners completely, and not even t e l l i n g them what he had been doing, Croft reported d i r e c t l y to Burghley that he had seen Parma's a u t h o r i t y to conclude a peace, signed by P h i l i p , and "...  g i v i n g ample a u t h o r i t y to do  everything as i f the King were there i n person, and to r a t i f y a l l that i s past [ s i c j  ."^  Parma had i n d i c a t e d that he was w i l l i n g to accept Croft's 30 proposals "as things to be considered of," but Champagney, one of the c h i e f Spanish n e g o t i a t o r s , wrote to Burghley of C r o f t r e q u i r i n g evidence that S i r 31 James had the Queen's approval of h i s a c t i o n s . On May 4, C r o f t , i n a l e t t e r to E l i z a b e t h , asked f o r her mercy "... for presuming to go to the Duke of 32 Parma without her d i r e c t i o n , "  but excused himself by saying that he had  feared the t r e a t y would be completely overthrown i f he had not acted speedily, and that he had gone to impress Parma w i t h the s i n c e r i t y of the Queen's i n t e n tions.  The Commission, s t i l l at Ostend, was understandably  s k e p t i c a l of  Spain's s i n c e r i t y , because, as Cobham wrote on May 4, "... t h e i r actions d i f 33 fer from t h e i r n e g o t i a t i o n s . " Nevertheless, they showed admirable r e s t r a i n t 34 i n w r i t i n g to Burghley, as both Derby and Dr. Dale d i d , excusing Croft and hoping that h i s dealings w i t h Parma would "... q u a l i f y H. M.'s displeasure for 35 h i s dealing alone which, for ought I can gather, was w e l l meant by E l i z a b e t h , however, was f u r i o u s :  him."  99  We cannot forbear to l e t you, Mr. C o n t r o l l e r , understand what cause of offence you d i d give to us, besides some discountenance to our commissioners and others i n that you took upon you alone without any warrant from us or any determination of the r e s t , to r e p a i r to the Duke of Parma to treat with him alone as you dare do i n sundry places and i n secret manner, assuring you that such an extraordinary attempt . . . may be drawn to a further reproof than can be e i t h e r answered or w e l l endured.36 On May 21, C r o f t was ordered to r e t u r n to England to e x p l a i n to the Queen why he had f e l t i t necessary to deal with Spain without any d i r e c t i o n from her, 37 and without l e t t i n g h i s colleagues know what he was doing. Elizabeth's anger was, however, s h o r t - l i v e d , and C r o f t ' s r e t u r n to England to answer her charges was delayed a few months.  Using a form of w r i t i n g to  which he was w e l l accustomed, Croft begged that "... he may be allowed by r e maining to r e p a i r h i s errors being so affected by her displeasure that h i s aged limbs have not force enough, without present death, to put i n p r a c t i c e 38 her cornmand."  His i l l n e s s may not have been feigned, but there i s l i t t l e  doubt that C r o f t r e a l i z e d into what bad graces he had f a l l e n , and that h i s reprieve was purely a temporary one.  Nevertheless, by the beginning of June, 39  he had again resumed his place i n the negotiations,  and, nothing daunted,  wasted no time i n continuing h i s complaints against the other  commissioners.  On June 7 he c r i t i c i z e d Dr. Dale f o r "not making him privy to any l e t t e r s 40 e i t h e r received or^sent, concerning t h i s cause,"  and on the 18th was  inti-  mating to Burghley that the proposals Croft had made p r i v a t e l y to Parma e a r l i e r were much more acceptable to the Spanish than the ones being proposed 41 by the commissioners.  I t was f a i r l y obvious by t h i s time that further  negotiations f o r peace were f u t i l e , notwithstanding C r o f t ' s c o n t i n u a l o p t i mism, and that Parma was f u l l y occupied w i t h preparations f o r war.  By the  end of June, the commissioners were prepared to r e t u r n to England, a f t e r f i v e  100  months of f r u i t l e s s e f f o r t , which had included scarcely a month of actual 42 negotiations.  On J u l y 18, i t was reported that they were leaving from  Ostend. The negotiations had proved a f a i l u r e , i n that the stated i n t e n t i o n of achieving a peace settlement had not come to pass, but E l i z a b e t h had gained much valuable information and p o s s i b l y some time.  F a i l u r e of the Bourbourg  peace t a l k s showed that war was i n e v i t a b l e , however l i t t l e the Queen r e l i s h e d the idea, and that preparations to meet the Armada would have to be made. However, the commissioners could not be blamed for f a i l u r e of the t a l k s , and E l i z a b e t h had no i n t e n t i o n of punishing them for t h e i r e f f o r t s .  C r o f t , how-  ever, was i n a d i f f e r e n t p o s i t i o n . He had d i r e c t l y contradicted the Queen's orders, had been uncooperative  with h i s colleagues, and had made a general  nuisance ojf himself while i n the Netherlands.  He obviously a n t i c i p a t e d the  trouble which lay i n store for him, when he wrote to Walsingham s h o r t l y before r e t u r n i n g to England, reminding Walsingham that he had "done h i s u t t e r most to f u r t h e r her [ i . e . Elizabeth's] s e r v i c e . A l t h o u g h  he continued as  a functioning member of the P r i v y Council for several weeks a f t e r h i s r e t u r n , on August 24th the Council recorded that "This daie S i r James C r o f t e , knight, Comptroller of her Majesties Household, was by t h e i r Lordships, uppon her Majesties commandement f[ committed]1 to the prison of the F l e e t e . " 44 The reasons for Croft's imprisonment were not s t a t e d , but c h i e f among them must have been his disobedience.  The punishment was not severe, however, and by the begin45  ning of 1589 Croft was once again f u l f i l l i n g h i s duties as a C o u n c i l l o r , having apparently experienced  no disgrace other than h i s short term i n p r i s o n .  Croft's conduct as a commissioner had been e c c e n t r i c , to say the l e a s t , and he was extremely fortunate that h i s punishment was such a minor one. Just  101  what i t was  that prompted him to revolve " i n an o r b i t of h i s own,"  as one  46 w r i t e r puts i t ,  i s d i f f i c u l t to decide.  Probably the most l i k e l y  explana-  t i o n i s that he suffered from an excess of z e a l , which, combined with an i n f l a t e d idea of h i s importance and a b i l i t y , and a desperate b e l i e f that peace should be secured under any event, caused him to act unwisely and extremely rashly. ing  His d e s i r e for peace was c e r t a i n l y s i n c e r e , but, i n s p i t e of h i s be-  i n Spain's pay, there was no suggestion made that he had been i n any  treacherous.  way  Indeed, i f he had, E l i z a b e t h would have taken f a r more d r a s t i c  measures against him than merely imprisoning him f o r a few months.  Although  there i s a p o s s i b i l i t y that Croft may have been a c t i n g i n secret under the Queen's orders, and that h i s dealings with Parma were therefore authorized, t h i s does not seem l i k e l y considering Elizabeth's obvious anger at h i s a c t i o n s , and the sentence handed out l a t e r by the C o u n c i l . Croft was  I t i s true that  a s o l d i e r and not a diplomat, but he had negotiated s u c c e s s f u l l y  before, with both the I r i s h and the Scots, and was not such a neophyte that he would o r d i n a r i l y be so uncautious.  One has to f a l l back, eventually, on  the explanation that C r o f t acted as he did because of h i s age and waning f a c ulties.  As mentioned p r e v i o u s l y , i n 1588 Croft was seventy years o l d , which,  i n an era when few l i v e d to that age, was considerable. c e r t a i n l y that of an o l d man, as Robert C e c i l , who  His signature i s  and he was considered past him prime by such  had termed him "crazy."  Parma, w r i t i n g to P h i l i p , had 47  described Croft as a "weak o l d man of seventy with very l i t t l e sagacity," and there are constant references i n l e t t e r s to h i s i l l health and poor constitution.  The above reason f o r Croft's actions do not excuse him, but do  provide an explanation.  They may  also have been the reason why E l i z a b e t h ,  r e a l i z i n g S i r James was a man who would probably not l i v e much longer, kept him i n prison such a short time, and why he maintained  h i s positions as  102  Comptroller  and P r i v y C o u n c i l l o r , i n which, i f he could not be of great  use,  at l e a s t he could do l i t t l e harm. With the exception of one b i z a r r e i n c i d e n t , Croft's connection with the peace commission was  over by the end of 1588.  In an unusual d i s p l a y of f i l i a l  devotion, Croft's eldest son, Edward, decided that h i s father's imprisonment could be blamed on the machinations of the E a r l of L e i c e s t e r , and, to revenge his  f a t h e r , he h i r e d a conjurer named Smith to accomplish L e i c e s t e r ' s d e a t h . ^  Why  Leicester should be selected i s d i f f i c u l t to imagine, p a r t i c u l a r l y as he  was  a kinsman who  had previously shown favours to S i r James, but  apparently  Edward Croft had given Smith a l i s t of the Council members, and Smith had  de-  49 cided that "the E a r l of L e i c e s t e r was S i r James Crofts great enemy."  Un-  f o r t u n a t e l y for Edward, on September 4, a f t e r a short i l l n e s s , L e i c e s t e r died."^  This event occurring so soon a f t e r Smith had declared that "he  had  muzzled the great bear,"^ Edward Croft was brought to t r i a l , but the r e s u l t s 1  are not known.  He indeed had reason to declare, upon h i s father's 52  ment, that "he and a l l his were undone except he had help,"  imprison-  as not only  he,  but also h i s brother James and a cousin named John, had been employed by S i r James while he was  commissioner i n the Low Countries .  The incident throws an  i n t e r e s t i n g l i g h t on the b e l i e f s of even the well-educated i n w i t c h c r a f t and sorcery, besides showing how  important i t was  for Croft's c h i l d r e n that t h e i r  father should hold a p o s i t i o n of influence i n which he might a i d them. For the remaining years l e f t to him, S i r James Croft continued to hold the positions he had obtained before going to the Netherlands.  He was  again  elected as senior member from Herefordshire i n the parliament which met from 53 November 12, 1588, to March 29, 1589, although t h i s was the l a s t session he  103  was  to attend.  On A p r i l 21, 1589,  i t was noted that "Her Majesty defers  the  pardon of the two C r o f t s , " ^ which would c e r t a i n l y r e f e r to Edward C r o f t , but 5  not n e c e s s a r i l y to h i s f a t h e r .  As noted above, S i r James had been readmitted  to the P r i v y Council at l e a s t as e a r l y as the beginning of January,  1589,  which i n d i c a t e s that he was already back i n the Queen's good graces by that time.  A l s o , on January 1 Croft had presented E l i z a b e t h with the customary  Year's g i f t , and had, i n r e t u r n , been given " g u i l t p l a t e " of equivalent to that given other knights who  attended the C o u r t .  55  New  value  P o s s i b l y the Queen's  c h a r i t y can be explained by sympathy for Croft's age and waning f a c u l t i e s , but no doubt her generosity and magnanimity were increased by the overwhelming success the English had achieved over the Spanish f l e e t some months previously. By September 10, 1590, S i r James C r o f t had died, and his l a s t recorded attendance at a meeting of the P r i v y Council had occurred on June 28th of the 56 same year.  Although the circumstances of h i s death are unknown, h i s age  and  i l l h e a l t h , which were frequently alluded to, cannot have made i t a s u r p r i s e . The e a r l i e s t mention of t h i s i s rather i r o n i c , as i t was r e f e r r e d to by S i r Thomas S h i r l e y i n a l e t t e r to Burghley, i n which he requested Croft's job: He has heard that Mr. Comptroller, S i r Jas. C r o f t s , i s dead. S o l i c i t s h i s [ i .e .] Burghley's] influence to obtain that o f f i c e for him, and h i s thankfulness s h a l l be 500 1. to Burghley. Hopes no e v i l opinion of ambition w i l l be cast upon him, as those who do not o f f e r themselves i n t h i s world are seldom advanced , ^ 5  The l a t t e r sentiment i s , no doubt, one i n which S i r James would have concurred, his  l i f e having been devoted to the " o f f e r i n g of himself" i n the hope of ob-  t a i n i n g p o s i t i o n s of influence and importance.  Although he had achieved con-  siderable success, one wonders i f the s t r a i n and worry were r e a l l y worth the small amount of g l o r y .  In a l i f e t i m e of hard work, he had been f a l s e l y accused  104  of treachery, imprisoned, castigated f o r the e f f o r t s he had made, forced to accept money from Spain because of the Queen's penuriousness, and had succeeded i n r u i n i n g h i s health to such an extent that h i s l a s t appearance oh the world's stage had caused him to be r e f e r r e d to as crazy' rr  man" of " l i t t l e sagacity."  r  and "a weak o l d  I t i s no wonder that h i s health was broken, and a  s u r p r i s e that he had succeeded i n staggering through to a r i p e o l d age. And yet, there i s l i t t l e doubt that Croft r e l i s h e d h i s p o s i t i o n , i n which he could be an intimate at Court of the great men of the country, could dispense favours to h i s friends and r e l a t i v e s , and could be considered f i g u r e i n h i s home county.  the leading  The causes of ambition are impossible to define,  but i n h i s d e s i r e to achieve success Croft had, i n h i s own small way, been s u c c e s s f u l , and had carved out f o r himself a niche i n the g a l l e r y of those remarkable administrators and servants of the Crown who helped to make the age of E l i z a b e t h remembered as one of the greatest i n the h i s t o r y of England.  105  CHAPTER  VII  CONCLUSION  Few readers would dispute the necessity of b i o g r a p h i c a l studies of such sixteenth century giants as Cardinal Wolsey, Protector Somerset, or Lord Burghley.  Obviously, i t can be considered  important to discover facts about  the major i n d i v i d u a l s i n h i s t o r y , whose backgrounds and p e r s o n a l i t i e s may have had d i r e c t bearing on actions which affected the course of events.  How-  ever, no such d i s t i n c t i o n s can be claimed f o r James C r o f t , and i t i s not an exaggeration  to state that the course of h i s t o r y i n sixteenth century B r i t a i n  would have been very l i t t l e changed i f Croft had never e x i s t e d .  However, the  same claim could not be made i f figures of a type s i m i l a r to Croft were not i n existence.  I t i s h i s importance as a type of i n d i v i d u a l , rather than as  a p a r t i c u l a r i n d i v i d u a l , that j u s t i f i e s a study of t h i s k i n d .  Seen against  a background of p a r t i c u l a r problems and trends which appeared i n Tudor England, and which have been r a i s e d by modern h i s t o r i a n s , an examination of the l i f e of Sir  James Croft helps put the century into a c l e a r e r perspective. Although there are aspects of Croft's career which do not f i t a c l e a r l y  definable pattern, in: the broad o u t l i n e s h i s l i f e was an a s p i r i n g Englishman.  t y p i c a l of that of many  To begin w i t h , h i s background and family connections  placed him as a member of a c e r t a i n c l a s s , and h i s career and intense e f f o r t s at r a i s i n g h i s p o s i t i o n are worth examining to see whether he q u a l i f i e d as a member of that much-examined and c o n t r o v e r s i a l group, the r i s i n g gentry. a l l aspects of Croft's l i f e i l l u s t r a t e , by f a r the most important way one's p o s i t i o n was  As  to r a i s e  to have important contacts at Court, the centre of a l l p o l i -  t i c a l and s o c i a l a c t i v i t y i n England.  Without patronage, Croft's chances of  106  becoming an important figure i n the nation were n i l , and without being important i n London, one's chances of becoming a leading f i g u r e i n one's county were s i g n i f i c a n t l y lessened.  Croft's career also i l l u s t r a t e s the precarious-  ness of Court l i f e , and i t s drawbacks as w e l l as i t s rewards.  In an age where  r e l i g i o n has been considered one of the most important problems, i t i s s i g n i f i c a n t that r e l i g i o n played a very minor r o l e i n Croft's l i f e , and t h a t , a l though he was attacked many times, i t was never o s t e n s i b l y for r e l i g i o u s r e a sons.  In t h i s , as i n other aspects, C r o f t was t y p i c a l not of the e n t i r e cen-  tury p a r t i c u l a r l y , but of a generation which came to power at the beginning of Elizabeth's r e i g n a f t e r serving under three monarchs before her.  Finally,  the n e c e s s i t y of using a b i o g r a p h i c a l approach to h i s t o r y at a l l should be considered;  f o r , i n an age when h i s t o r y i s generally examined i n i t s s o c i a l  or economic aspects, rather than as a study of p e r s o n a l i t y , a j u s t i f i c a t i o n of t h i s approach seems c a l l e d f o r . Exactly what c o n s t i t u t e d a member of the gentry has long been a matter of dispute. his  S i r Thomas Smith's d e f i n i t i o n of a gentleman as a man who spends  money l i k e a gentleman i s vague, but w i s e l y so.  to the c l a s s of gentry are almost impossible.  Attempts to give l i m i t s  Professor Tawney i d e n t i f i e d  i t s members as landed p r o p r i e t e r s above the yeomanry and below the peerage, together with well-to-do farmers, some p r o f e s s i o n a l men, merchants.  1  and the wealthier  Lawrence Stone has concurred with Tawney's d e f i n i t i o n , and iden-  t i f i e d i t more c l o s e l y .  Of the upper group of gentry, who were d i s t i n g u i s h e d 2  by "wealth, p o l i t i c a l i n f l u e n c e , and s t y l e of l i v i n g , "  Stone had t h i s to say:  They are the men who c o n t r o l l e d county p o l i t i c s under the patronage of the l o c a l nobleman, who provided the M.P.s and Deputy Lieutenants, and who dominated the bench of J u s t i c e s . In a large southern county they seemed to have comprised about 20 to 25 f a m i l i e s , the t o t a l being perhaps about 500 i n the whole country.^  107  This d e s c r i p t i o n could apply almost word-for-word to James C r o f t , and would seem to place him squarely i n the centre of the gentry.  In County p o l i t i c s  he obtained a wide v a r i e t y of p o s i t i o n s , ranging from membership on the Commission of Musters to a seat on the Council of the Welsh Marches.  He himself  was a Member of Parliament for over twenty-five years, and had caused numerous of h i s r e l a t i v e s to be e l e c t e d . In a d d i t i o n , he sat as a J u s t i c e of the Peace for the county, thus f u l f i l l i n g a l l of Stone's requirements but that of Deputy Lieutenant, and i t i s even possible that he held t h i s o f f i c e .  It is  u n l i k e l y that there would be twenty f a m i l i e s i n Herefordshire equal to C r o f t ' s , the county being i s o l a t e d and sparsely populated, and C r o f t would c e r t a i n l y q u a l i f y as a member of Stone's f i v e hundred leading E n g l i s h gentry, while not yet achieving a p o s i t i o n as member of the a r i s t o c r a c y . However, i t i s a problem whether Croft can be considered a " r i s i n g " member of the gentry.  I f one can include the gentry as members of the middle  c l a s s , i t can e a s i l y be questioned that C r o f t was a member of a " r i s i n g " middle c l a s s f a m i l y . I t i s true that he had had to work h i s way up through the army and minor a d m i n i s t r a t i v e posts before he eventually was given an important job, and that h i s father was a good example of the r u s t i c a t e d country land-owner, but examination of C r o f t ' s p r i o r antecedents t e l l a d i f f e r e n t story than that of the r i s i n g gentry.  Members of the Croft family had been  Members of Parliament and important figures i n county p o l i t i c s , had been granted lands for meritorious s e r v i c e to the Crown, and had held important positions at Court at various times over the preceding f i v e hundred years. Croft's great-grandfather, S i r Richard, for example, had been S h e r i f f of the county and a Member of Parliament, and, for a short time, had even been Treasurer of the King's Household.^  His grandfather, S i r Edward, had held p o s i -  108  tions of almost equal importance, t r a d i t i o n of s e r v i c e .  and only h i s father had broken the long  However, Richard Croft had not squandered the property  which had accumulated over the years, but was s a t i s f i e d with a q u i e t , country life.  James C r o f t , therefore, had simply returned to the pursuits which his  family had followed, as a r u l e , throughout the preceding c e n t u r i e s .  His  way  of l i f e q u a l i f i e s him as a member of the gentry, and even of the middle c l a s s , but i t i s d i f f i c u l t to see h i s l i f e as an example of the r i s e of such a c l a s s . Unless one were w i l l i n g to l i v e a purely r u r a l existence, ambition i n Tudor England could be s a t i s f i e d i n only one way, Court.  and that was  As Anthony E s l e r has stated, "The court was  through the  the l i v i n g heart of the  6 E n g l i s h government," modern times."'  and "the most important  p o l i t i c a l i n s t i t u t i o n of e a r l y  The monarch had i n h i s power an enormous amount of patronage  7  which was dispersed e i t h e r personally or through members of the inner c i r c l e of the Court.  Anyone who wanted to obtain a lease of land, for example, or a  wardship, monopoly, or charter, had to compete with other s u i t o r s at the Court. Obviously, the c l o s e r one could come to the p r i v i l e g e d inner c i r c l e , the more l i k e l y one would be to obtain r o y a l favours, and the greater one's influence would become. to "...  J . E. Neale defines membership of the inner r i n g of the Court  those o f f i c i a l s and c o u r t i e r s - - n o t excluding the l a d i e s of the  Court--  g  whose place or f r i e n d s h i p gave them the Queen's ear."  Considering the t e r r i -  f i c competition for Court p o s i t i o n , the chances of ever becoming a member of the inner c i r c l e were very s l i m .  The most ambitious, and talented, members  of the a r i s t o c r a c y had r e l a t i v e l y l i t t l e d i f f i c u l t y , and the opportunities given to such men  as the Duke of Norfolk i n 1560 would not have been a v a i l a b l e  to the majority of s u i t o r s f o r placement, who were generally ambitious members of the gentry.  E s l e r states that the basic q u a l i f i c a t i o n s f o r membership were  109  " b i r t h , education, and a considerable amount of wealth," far  the most important must have been b i r t h .  but, of these, by  R e l a t i o n s h i p , however tenuous,  w i t h somebody who already had a Court p o s i t i o n made admission there immeasurably more easy than i f one was merely w e l l educated and wealthy. The l i f e of James C r o f t i l l u s t r a t e s the importance of the Court i n s i x teenth century England, and shows not only the rewards but also the disadvantages and precariousness of Court l i f e .  Of E s l e r ' s three q u a l i f i c a t i o n s f o r  membership at Court, C r o f t was d e f i c i e n t i n two, being n e i t h e r w e l l educated nor p a r t i c u l a r l y wealthy.  However, the generation E s l e r i s d e s c r i b i n g i s the  one of 1560, while.the older generation, characterized by Lord Burghley, who was born i n 1520 and was thus a contemporary of C r o f t , d i d not n e c e s s a r i l y share the same q u a l i f i c a t i o n s f o r Court membership with members of the younger generation.  Education, f o r example, was much more important i n 1575 than i t  would have been i n 1535.  Wealth, however, was e s s e n t i a l at Court i n any era,  and the disadvantages of not having a s u f f i c i e n t income can be seen by C r o f t ' s many requests f o r favours, and by the n e c e s s i t y of h i s having to accept money from Spain.  His success i n becoming a member of the inner c i r c l e i s a t r i b u t e  i n part to h i s t e n a c i t y , but also i l l u s t r a t e s the importance of connections, p a r t i c u l a r l y family connections, i n obtaining Court p o s i t i o n . Exactly how much C r o f t r e l i e d on h i s friends and r e l a t i v e s f o r advancement i s impossible to prove, but there i s l i t t l e doubt that they were overwhelmingly important.  Robert Dudley, E a r l of L e i c e s t e r , q u i t e obviously gave  assistance to S i r James, and r e f e r r e d to him as "my kinsman" even though he was only a d i s t a n t cousin.  Neale mentions "the ladies of the Court" as being  members of the inner c i r c l e , and Lady Scudamore, lady-in-waiting to the Queen,  110  must have been of invaluable assistance.  Friendships, too, were important,,  and the most remarkable contact that Croft could have made was with E l i z a b e t h herself.  Among Croft's friends who were held i n high repute at Court were  William C e c i l , Lord Rutland, John Dee, and S i r Thomas Smith, and Croft probabl y c u l t i v a t e d t h e i r acquaintance as much for the assistance they could provide as for t h e i r i n t r i n s i c worth.  E s l e r estimates membership i n the inner group  as being confined t o , at most, one hundred men, who made up "the l i v i n g heart" of Elizabeth's government: I t was a f a i r l y homogeneous l i t t l e group, many of them r e l a t e d by t i e s of blood or marriage. Most of them knew each other personally or by r e p u t a t i o n ; almost a l l of them must have been known to one or another of the Queen's c h i e f ministers.^® As holder of the p o s i t i o n of Comptroller of the Household for twenty years, and as an ambitious seeker of placement on the fringes of Court l i f e for approximately twenty years before that, Croft must have known everyone of importance, and used whatever contacts he was able to take advantage of.  His  career i l l u s t r a t e s the importance of such contacts, and the i m p o s s i b i l i t y of carving a career for oneself at Court without them. In a century when one of the most s i g n i f i c a n t developments i n England, i f not the most s i g n i f i c a n t , was  the reformation of the Church, i t might be  considered impossible to have negotiated the r e l i g i o u s i n t r i g u e s and upheavals without taking a d e f i n i t e stand on r e l i g i o n .  However, r e l i g i o n appears  to have played a minor r o l e i n Croft's career, and there are no i n d i c a t i o n s that he p a r t i c u l a r l y favoured e i t h e r Catholicism or Anglicanism.  At various  times he was r e f e r r e d to as a C a t h o l i c , by the Spanish, and as a n t i - C a t h o l i c , by informants of C e c i l ' s .  In I r e l a n d , he followed the j u d i c i o u s p o l i c y of  attempting to m o l l i f y the C a t h o l i c bishops, and was unsuccessful only because  Ill  h i s recommendations were overturned  by Northumberland.  His p a r t i c i p a t i o n i n  Wyatt's r e b e l l i o n does not, however, appear to have been prompted by fears that Mary would attempt to impose Catholicism on the country, but because he genuinely feared Spanish domination of England.  I t i s true that C r o f t l a t e r  accepted money from Catholic Spain, but t h i s i n d i c a t e s h i s heed for money rather than any r e l i g i o u s f e e l i n g s . In h i s a t t i t u d e towards, r e l i g i o n , as i n temporal matters, Croft was  a realist.  He must have known that to become  a c t i v e l y involved i n r e l i g i o u s controversy might be p r o f i t a b l e for a short time, but that, considering the unsettled conditions of the time, an excess of r e l i g i o u s z e a l was more l i k e l y to lead to banishment or the block than to p o s i t i o n and favour at Court.  Croft's r e l i g i o u s a t t i t u d e s may not have been  a t y p i c a l , however, and many an a s p i r i n g c o u r t i e r and position-seeker must have followed a s i m i l a r , c i r c u i t o u s path to avoid becoming embroiled i n damaging r e l i g i o u s arguments. The study of a man  such as Croft does not, i n i t s e l f , answer any of the  important questions of the Tudor period, but, as I have t r i e d to i n d i c a t e , Croft i s important as a type of i n d i v i d u a l .  J. E. Neale has s a i d that "...  we  cannot f u l l y understand the nature and functioning of any human group without knowing about the i n d i v i d u a l s who  compose i t . "  can only come from a s e r i e s of biographies.  1 1  Such knowledge, he  continues,  Some of the problems which Neale  f e e l s might be solved by the b i o g r a p h i c a l approach include that of c l i e n t a g e - "the p o l i t i c a l and s o c i a l r e l a t i o n s h i p of patron and dependant, which prev a i l e d i n the s i x t e e n t h century"--and that of the connections of l o c a l a f f a i r s 12 with n a t i o n a l p o l i t i c s .  Although i t would be presumptuous to suggest that  t h i s study of Croft solves e i t h e r of Neale's problems, i t does throw some l i g h t on both of them.  Through a s e r i e s of biographies which showed s i m i l a r  112  r e l a t i o n s h i p s as those of Croft's to i n f l u e n t i a l Court f i g u r e s , or examined the l i n k s between important county personages and t h e i r r o l e s i n n a t i o n a l government, one might be able to postulate some conclusions about E n g l i s h a f f a i r s of the Tudor period.  I t i s d i f f i c u l t to imagine another approach  than the b i o g r a p h i c a l that would be able to answer Neale's questions.  Neale  explains that he has i n h e r i t e d , from A. F. P o l l a r d , a prejudice against b i o graphical w r i t i n g i n the conventional sense, but that b i o g r a p h i c a l w r i t i n g "... can be as exacting and searching a d i s c i p l i n e as most types of h i s 13 tory."  His major prejudice "... i s against young people w r i t i n g of l i f e 14  before they have gathered s u f f i c i e n t experience complaint  to i n t e r p r e t i t . "  To t h i s  the w r i t e r has no defence, except to say that an examination of  the l i f e of.James C r o f t , and of others s i m i l a r to him, i s overdue, and that the mature h i s t o r i a n s of our age, of whom S i r John Neale i s one, have not found the time, or the i n t e r e s t , to make studies of these neglected figures of the sixteenth century.  113  FOOTNOTES CHAPTER I  1 From G. R. E l t o n , The Tudor Revolution  i n Government (Cambridge, 1966) .  2 As with most names of the period, Croft's i s s p e l l e d i n various ways. I have used the s p e l l i n g " C r o f t " p a r t l y because i t was spelled i n t h i s way i n perhaps a majority of instances, and p a r t l y because i t i s the s p e l l i n g which has persisted i n the family to the present day. Other s p e l l i n g s which were used a great deal are Crofts and Croftes, but v a r i a t i o n s which occur include C r o f t e , C r o f f t s , A c r o f t , Cross, and even Grof. 3 For d e t a i l s on Croft's ancestry I have r e l i e d e n t i r e l y on 0. G. S. Croft The House of Croft of Croft Castle (Hereford, 1949), which, as the t i t l e suggests, i s a f a i r l y d e t a i l e d and complete account of the Croft family from c. 1100 to the e a r l y twentieth century. 4 Escheators I n q u i s i t i o n s Hereford 4. E l i z . 1562, No. 2, Public Record O f f i c e . Quoted i n C r o f t , House of C r o f t , p. 53. 5 C r o f t , House of C r o f t , pp. 52-53. 6 I b i d . , p. 48. 7 I b i d . , p. 40. 8 I b i d ., p. 44. 9 B r i t i s h Museum, A d d i t i o n a l MS 11,049, Scudamore Papers, IX (December 1, 1561). 10 C r o f t , House of C r o f t , p. 77. 11 D. M. Loades, Two Tudor Conspiracies  (Cambridge, 1965), p. 18.  12 Calendar of L e t t e r s and Papers, Foreign and Domestic, of the Reign of Henry V I I I , ed. James Gairdner and R. H. Brodie, 21 v o l s . (London, 1862-1932), XVI, 168. Hereafter t h i s i s r e f e r r e d to as L,P. 13 B r i t i s h Sessional Papers, House of Commons (London, 1878), L X I I , part 1, 372. 14 L.P., XVII, 500. 15 Loc. c i t . 16 G. R. E l t o n , England Under the Tudors (London, 1960), p. 197.  114  17 For d e t a i l s on the r i v a l r y between Seymour and Surrey, I have r e l i e d on A. F. P o l l a r d , England Under Protector Somerset (London, 1900), and on the accounts of the two men given i n The D i c t i o n a r y of National Biography (herea f t e r r e f e r r e d to as D.N.B.) . 18 L.P., XIX, 383. 19 L.P., XXI, 92. (The l e t t e r i s a c t u a l l y dated 1545 by the o l d calendar. However, to avoid confusion, i n quoting dates I have used the dating of the new calendar, which began the year on January 1 rather than mid-March.) 20 Charles Wriothesley, A Chronicle of England During the Reigns of the Tudors, from A .D. 1485 to 1559, ed. William Douglas Hamilton, Camden S o c , 2nd Ser., Nos. 11 and 20 (London, 1877), I I , 22, n. e. 21 L.P., XXI, 117-118. 22 I b i d . , pp. 203-204. 23 I b i d . , pp. 740-741. 24 I b i d . , pp. 89-90. 25 L.P., XXI, 741 (August 21), 748 (August 24), 754 (August 29), and 354 (January 4) . Also Calendar of State Papers, Foreign: Sterles, of the Reign of Edward VI, 1547-1553, ed. W i l l i a m B. Turnbull (London, 1861)', p ^'294. Herea f t e r t h i s i s r e f e r r e d to as C.S.P.F., Edward. 26 L.P., XXI, 353. 27 Wriothesley, Chronicle, I , 174. 28 C.S.P.F., Edward, pp. 344-345. 29 I b i d . , pp. 309-310. 30 I b i d . , p. 310. 31 Richard Grafton, The C r o n i c l e of B r i t e y n (London, 1568), pp. 1286-1287. 32 The Manuscripts of His Grace the Duke of Rutland, ed. H.C. Maxwell Lyte, 4 v o l s . (London: H i s t o r i c a l Manuscripts Commission, 1888-1905), I , 35. Hereafter t h i s i s referred to as Rutland MSS. 33 D.N.B., X I I , 935. 34 Rutland MSS, I , 35. 35 Loc. c i t . 36 Loc. c i t . 37 I b i d . , pp. 194 and 197.  115  38 Edward Ayscu, A H i s t o r i e Contayning the Warres, T r e a t i e s , Marriages, and Other Occurrents Betweene England and Scotland, from King W i l l i a m the Conqueror, U n t i l l the Happy Union of Them Both i n Our Gratious King James (London, 1607), p. 352. vols.  39 Raphael Holinshed, Chronicles of England, Scotland, and I r e l a n d , 6 (London, 1808), I I I , 907. 40 Rutland MSS, I , 362.  41 Acts of the P r i v y C o u n c i l , ed. John Roche Dasent, New S e r i e s , 32 v o l s . (London, 1890-1907), I I , 256. Hereafter t h i s i s r e f e r r e d to as A.P.C. 42 For an account of the wars i n Scotland and France, I have r e l i e d on the account given by P o l l a r d , England Under Protector Somerset, chs. 5 and 6. 43 N. H. N i c o l a s , " B i o g r a p h i c a l Memoirs. S i r James C r o f t , P r i v y Counsell o r and Comptroller of the Household of Queen E l i z a b e t h , " Retrospective Review, 2nd Ser., I (1827), 475. The only a r t i c l e extant dealing s o l e l y w i t h C r o f t .  116  FOOTNOTES CHAPTER I I  1 For accounts of conditions i n Ireland during the early part o f the s i x t e e n t h century, I have r e l i e d p r i n c i p a l l y on R. Dudley Edwards, " I r e l a n d , E l i z a b e t h I and the Counter Reformation," contained i n Elizabethan Government and Society, ed. John Neale (London, 1961); Richard Bagwell, Ireland ..Under the Tudors, 2 v o l s . , 1 (London, 1885); and Thomas Leland, H i s t o r y of Ireland from the Invasion of Henry I I , -3 v o l s . , I I (London, 1773) . 2 Edwards, " I r e l a n d , E l i z a b e t h I and the Counter Reformation," p. 319. 3 D.N.B., XVII, 653. (Biographical d e t a i l s on S t . Leger contained i n t h i s paragraph have been taken p r i m a r i l y from the above-mentioned a r t i c l e i n the D.N.B.) 4 Loc. c i t . 5 A.P.C., I I I , 206. 6 Calendar of the State Papers R e l a t i n g to I r e l a n d , of the Reigns of Henry V I I I , Edward VI, Mary, and E l i z a b e t h , 1509-1573, ed. Hans Claude Hamilton (London, 1860), p. 111. Hereafter t h i s i s r e f e r r e d to-as C.S.P., I r e l a n d . 7 I b i d . , p. 112. 8 A.P.C., I I I , 224. 9 W. K. Jordan, The Chronicle and P o l i t i c a l Papers of King Edward VI (Ithaca, New York, 1966), p. 57. 10 A.P.C., I I I , 256. 11 I b i d . , p. 261 12 John Strype, E c c l e s i a s t i c a l Memorials, R e l a t i n g C h i e f l y to R e l i g i o n , and the Reformation of I t , and the Emergencies of the Church of England, Under King Henry V I I I , King Edward VI, and Queen Mary I , 3 v o l s (Oxford, 1822), I I , part I , 470-471. 13 I b i d . , pp. 471-473. 14 I b i d . , p. 524. 15 I b i d . , pp. 523-524. 16 C.S.P., I r e l a n d , p. 113. 17 A.P.C., I I I , 271.  117  18 C.S.P., I r e l a n d , p. 113. 19 I b i d . , p. 114. 20 Loc. c i t . 21 C .S.P.F., Edward, p. 126. 22 Loc. c i t . 23 An H i s t o r i c a l Sketch of the Church i n Ireland (London, 1839), pp. 203-204. 24 I b i d . , p. 205. 25 Leland, H i s t o r y of I r e l a n d , p. 195. 26 John 0'Donovan, ed., Annals of the Kingdom of Ireland by the Four Masters, from the E a r l i e s t Period to the Year 1616, 5 vols ., V (Dublin, 1851), 1523-1525. 27 Leland, H i s t o r y of I r e l a n d , p. 197 28 H i s t o r i c a l Sketch of the Church i n I r e l a n d , pp. 206-207. 29 I b i d . , p. 207. 30 I b i d . , p. 208. 31 I b i d . , p. 211. 32 Leland, H i s t o r y of I r e l a n d , p. 198. 33 Bagwell, Ireland Under the Tudors, I , 367. 34 For an account of the recommendations made by C r o f t , and those eventua l l y made by the King, see Bagwell, Ireland Under the Tudors, I , 367. 35 C.S.P., I r e l a n d , p. 118. 36 Bagwell, Ireland Under the Tudors, I , 368. 37 For a general account of the problems caused i n Ireland by the debased coinage, I have r e l i e d on Bagwell, Ireland Under the Tudors, I , 335-336, 370372. 38 C.S.P., I r e l a n d , p. 116. 39 Loc. c i t . 40 Loc. c i t . 41 A.P.C., I I I , 363.  118  42 I b i d . , pp. 427-428. 43 C.S.P., I r e l a n d , p. 122. 44 Loc. c i t . 45 I b i d . 46 J . E. Neale, "The Elizabethan P o l i t i c a l Scene," Essays i n Elizabethan H i s t o r y (London, 1958), pp. 59-6.0. 47 C S .P., I r e l a n d , p. 127. 48 For accounts of the tangled monetary system which existed i n England i n the e a r l y s i x t e e n t h century, I have r e l i e d p r i n c i p a l l y on A. E. Feavearyear, The Pound S t e r l i n g : a.History of E n g l i s h Money (Oxford,.1931), and J . D. Mackie, The E a r l i e r Tudors, 1485-1558 (Oxford, 1962). 49 Mackie, The E a r l i e r Tudors, p. 607. 50 Feavearyear, The Pound S t e r l i n g , p. 70. 51 For an account of the state of Ireland i n 1552 I have r e l i e d p r i n c i p a l l y on the Introduction to the Calendar of the Carew Manuscripts, ed. J . S. Brewer and W i l l i a m B u l l e n , 3 v o l s . (London, 1869), I I I , v i i - x x v i i i . Also usef u l were Bagwell, Ireland Under the Tudors, I , 373-378, and John 0'Donovan, ed. Annals of the Kingdom of I r e l a n d , pp. 1521-1527. 52 0'Donovan, ed., Annals, pp. 1523 and 1525. 53 I b i d . , p. 1525. 54 I b i d . , p. 1527. 55 C.S.P., I r e l a n d , p. 128. 56 Loc. c i t . 57 Ibid ., p. 130. 58 Loc . c i t . 59 A.P.C., IV, 269. 60 Edmund Campion, H i s t o r i e of Ireland (Dublin, 1633), p. 124. 61 See C.S.P., I r e l a n d , December 21, 1551, p. 120, i n which Croft thanks C e c i l for h i s f r i e n d s h i p and asks him "to be good to h i s brother." 62 Calendar of L e t t e r s , Despatches, and State Papers, R e l a t i n g to the Negotiations Between England and Spain, Preserved i n the Archives at Vienna, Simancas, Besancon and B r u s s e l s , ed. R o y a l l Tyler (London, 1916), XI (Edward VI and Mary, 1553), 37. Hereafter t h i s i s r e f e r r e d to as C.S.P., Spanish.  119  FOOTNOTES CHAPTER I I I  1 E l t o n , England Under the Tudors, p. 212. 2 Henry Machyn, The Diary of Henry Machyn, C i t i z e n and Merchant-Taylor of London, from A.D. 1550 to A.D. 1563-, ed. John Gough N i c h o l s , Camden Soc., 1st Ser., No. 42 (London, 1848), p. 35. 3 P a t r i c k Fraser T y t l e r , England Under the Reigns of Edward VI and Mary, with the Contemporary H i s t o r y of Europe, I l l u s t r a t e d i n a Series of O r i g i n a l L e t t e r s Never Before P r i n t e d , 2 v o l s . (London, 1839), I I , 187. 4 John Gough N i c h o l s , ed., The Chronicle of Queen Jane, and of Two Years of Queen Mary, and E s p e c i a l l y of the R e b e l l i o n of S i r Thomas Wyat. Written by a Resident i n the Tower of London, Camden S o c , 1st Ser., No. 48 (London, 1850), p. 13. 5 C.S.P., Spanish, X I , 95-96. 6 I b i d . , p. 117. 7 The most complete modern account of Wyatt's R e b e l l i o n , and i t s background, i s D. M. Loades, Two Tudor Conspiracies (Cambridge, 1965), on which. I have r e l i e d e x t e n s i v e l y . Two contemporary accounts of great value are The Chronicle of Queen Jane, ed. J . G. N i c h o l s , and The Diary of Henry Machyn. 8 Machyn, Diary, p. 51 9 Strype, E c c l e s i a s t i c a l Memorials, I I I , part I , 92. 10 Loades, Two Tudor Conspiracies, pp. 12-13. 11 I b i d . , pp. 15-16. 12 D.N.B., XV, 1130; XXI, 1102; XIX, 811; I I I , 968. 13 I b i d . , XIX, 811. 14 Strype, E c c l e s i a s t i c a l Memorials, I I , part 2, 161-162. 15 I b i d . , I I , part 1, 522. 16 A.P.C, IV, 156, 422.  _  .  17 Loades, Two Tudor Conspiracies, pp. 17-18. 18 E. Harris Harbison, R i v a l Ambassadors at the Court of Queen Mary (London, 1940), p. 117—quoting Henry I I to Noailles,, 30 D e c , 1553, A f f . E t r . , IX, f o i . Ill.  120  19 C.S.P., Spanish, X I I , 119. 20 I b i d . , p. 130. 21 An account of the French p o s i t i o n i s given i n Harbison, R i v a l Ambassadors , Chs. IV and V. 22 Renard to the Emperor, Feb. 24, 1554. Cited i n T y t l e r , England Under the Reigns of Edward VI and Mary, p. 306. 23 N i c h o l s , ed., The Chronicle of Queen Jane, p. 69. 24 Loades, Two Tudor Conspiracies, p. 19. 25 Harbison, R i v a l Ambassadors, p. 122. 26 N o a i l l e s to Henry I I , Jan. 12, 1554. Cited i n Harbison, R i v a l Ambassadors , p. 122. 27 W i l l i a m Cobbett, A Complete C o l l e c t i o n of State T r i a l s (London, 1816-98), I , 883. Cited i n Loades, Two Tudor Conspiracies, p. 21. 28 N i c h o l s , ed., The Chronicle of Queen Jane, p. 35. 29 Loc. c i t . 30 Loc . c i t . 31 I b i d ., p. 36. 32 Loc. c i t . 33 I b i d ., p. 40. 34 Calendar of State Papers, Domestic S e r i e s , of the Reigns of Edward V I , Mary, E l i z a b e t h , ed. Robert Lemon and Mary Anne Everett Green, 7 v o l s . (London, 1856-1871), I (1547-1580), 59. Hereafter t h i s i s r e f e r r e d to as C.S.P., Domestic . 35 Loades, Two Tudor Conspiracies, pp. 45-46. 36 C.S.P., Domestic, I , 57. 37 N i c h o l s , ed., The Chronicle of Queen Jane, pp. 53-54, 38 Machyn, Diary, p. 54. 39 C.S.P., Domestic, I , 60. 40 Holinshed, Chronicles, IV, 14. 41 N i c h o l s , ed., The Chronicle of Queen Jane, p. 42.  121 42 I b i d . , pp. 48-51. 43 I b i d . , p. 54. 44 I b i d . , pp. 62-63. 45 C.S.P., Spanish, X I I , 106. 46 Machyn, Diary, p. 56. 47 N i c h o l s , ed., The Chronicle of Queen Jane, p. 63. 48 I b i d . , p. 60. 49 John Fox, Acts and Monuments, 3 v o l s . (London, 1632), I I I , 945. 50 Strype, E c c l e s i a s t i c a l Memorials, I I I , part 1, 126. 51 C.S.P., Domestic, I , 61. 52 Loc. c i t . 53 Holinshed, C h r o n i c l e s , IV, 126. 54 C.S.P., Spanish, X I I , 125. 55 Wriothesley, C h r o n i c l e , I I , 115. 56 Robert Fabyan, The New Chronicles of England and France (London, 1811), p. 714. 57 N i c h o l s , ed., The Chronicle of Queen Jane, p. 75. 58 Loc. c i t . 59 I b i d . , p. 76. The c h r o n i c l e r gives the date as A p r i l 28th., but as both Wriothesley and Machyn.give the 29th., I have used the l a t t e r date. 60 Loc. c i t . 61 Wriothesley, C h r o n i c l e , I I , 115. 62 C.S.P., Spanish, X I I , 167-168. 63 Machyn, D i a r y , p. 80. 64 Richard Baker, A Chronicle of the Kings of England, from the Time of the Romans Government, to the Death of King James the F i r s t (London, 1730) . 65 I b i d . , p. 322. 66 A.P.C, V, 90-91. 67 Calendar of the Patent R o l l s Preserved i n the Public Record O f f i c e , 15 v o l s . (London, 1901-1966) 14:2 (1554-1555), 124-125. Hereafter t h i s i s r e f e r r e d to as C a l . Patent R o l l s .  122  68 I b i d . , p. 191. 69 John Stow, Annales, o r , a Generall Chronicle of England (London, 1631), p. 628. 70 E l t o n , England Under the Tudors, pp. 221-222. 71 Holinshed, Chronicles, IV, 87. 72 A.P.C., V I , 99-100. 73 I b i d . , p. 100. 74 I b i d . , p. 120. 75 Loc. c i t . 76 Ibid"., p. 137. 77 I b i d . , p. 138. 78 I b i d . , p. 148. 79 Ibid.,.p. 159. 80 Strype, E c c l e s i a s t i c a l Memorials, I I I , part 2, 533. ( L e t t e r from Shrewesbury to the P r i v y C o u n c i l , undated.) 81 I b i d . , pp. 521-522. 82 I b i d . , pp. 522-524. 83 I b i d . , p. 89. 84 Loc. c i t . 85 C.S.P., Spanish, X I I I , 373-374. . 86 Loc. c i t . 87 I b i d . , pp. 455-456. 88 A.P.C., V I , 244. 89 I b i d . , p. 310. 90 I b i d . , pp. 334-335. 91 I b i d . , p. 396. 92 I b i d . , p. 415.  123  FOOTNOTES CHAPTER IV  1 John Hayward, Annals of the F i r s t Four Years of the Reign of Queen E l i z a b e t h , Camden Society, 1st. Ser., No. 7 (London, 1840), p. 19. 2 Loc. c i t . Also see J . E. Neale, "The Accession of Queen E l i z a b e t h I , " Essays i n Elizabethan H i s t o r y , (London, 1958), p. 55. 3 Hayward, Annals, p. 29. 4 Loc. c i t . 5 Ibid. 6 For a complete account of the S c o t t i s h campaign of 1559-1560, I have r e l i e d p r i n c i p a l l y on C. G. Cruickshank, Elizabeth's Army (Oxford, 1966), X I I I , 207-236. 7 Calendar of State Papers, Foreign S e r i e s , of the Reign of E l i z a b e t h , ed. J . Stephenson, A. J . Crosby, A. J . B u t l e r , S. C. Lomas, A. B. Hinds, and R. B. Wernham, 22 v o l s . (London, 1863-1936), I (1558-1559), 56. Hereafter t h i s i s r e f e r r e d to as C,.S.P., Foreign. 8 I b i d . , p. 57. 9 Strype , E c c l e s i a s t i c a l Memorials, 10 C.S.P. , Foreign, I , 72-73. 11 A.P.C. , V I I , 15. 12 C.S.P. , Foreign, I , 89-90. 13 I b i d . , p. 100. 14 I b i d . , p. 73. 15 I b i d . , p. 108. 16 I b i d . , p. 146. 17 I b i d . , p. 108. 18 I b i d . , p. 170. 19 Hayward, Annals, p. 35, and n. 2. 20 C.S.P. , Foreign, I , 189.  124  21 I b i d . , p. 207. 22 I b i d . , p. 200. 23 I b i d . , p. 214. 24 A.P.C., V I I , 86 ( A p r i l 15, 1559).  V  25 C.S.P., Foreign, I , 236-237 (May 3, 1559); 285 (May 27). 26 I b i d . , p. 238. 27 I b i d . , p. 263. 28 In a l e t t e r from Norfolk to the Queen on June 2, 1560, Norfolk states that "Her Majesty's garrison was f i r s t encouraged to robbery by the i n s a t i a b l e " p i l l i n g and p o l l i n g e " of her c a p t a i n , S i r James C r o f t s , who has used himself so s u s p i c i o u s l y i n t h i s Her Majesty's l a s t s e r v i c e . . . . " Calendar of the Manus c r i p t s of the Most Hon. the Marquis of S a l i s b u r y , K. C , 19 v o l s . (London: H i s t o r i c a l Manuscripts Commission, 1883-1965), I , 229. Hereafter t h i s i s r e ferred to as C e c i l MSS. 29 Arthur C l i f f o r d , ed., The State Papers and L e t t e r s of S i r Ralph Sadler, Knight-Banneret, 2 v o l s . (Edinburgh, 1809), I I , 3, 8-9. Hereafter this i s r e ferred to as Sadler Papers. 30 John Strype, Annals of the Reformation and Establishment of R e l i g i o n , and Other Various Occurrences i n the Church of England, During Queen E l i z a beth 's Happy Reign, 4 v o l s . (Oxford, 1824), I , part 1, 468. Strype, who does not give the source of h i s information, states that "some p r i v a t e acts were made f o r the r e s t o r i n g i n blood d i v e r s , who were concerned i n the business of the lady Jane and S i r Thomas Wyat." Although t h i s suggests that Croft had been a t t a i n t e d by Mary, there are no i n d i c a t i o n s given anywhere else of t h i s having occurred, and i t most l i k e l y that h i s punishment under Mary consisted of a f i n e and loss of revenue, but not a t t a i n d e r . 31 C.S.P., Foreign, I , 232-233. 32 I b i d . , p. 233. 33 I b i d . , - p .  446.  34 C a l . Patent R o l l s , XV:1,  40.  35 I b i d . , p. 113. 36 In 1556, the Spanish ambassador wrote to the King that Croft " i s said to be strongly attached to your Majesty's s e r v i c e . " C S .P., Spanish, I , 540. As Croft was known to be a Spanish pensioner during Mary's r e i g n , and was d e f i n i t e l y one l a t e r during E l i z a b e t h ' s , i t seems safe to assume that he was one i n 1559-1560, while he was at Berwick. 37 C.S.P., Foreign, I , 268.  125  38 I b i d . , p. 316. 39 I b i d . , p. 365. 40 I b i d . , p. 401. 41 I b i d . , pp. 403-404. 42 I b i d . , p. 320. 43 I b i d ., p. 330. 44.Ibid., p. 372 (July 11); p. 384 (July 17). 45 I b i d . , p. 450. 46 D.N.B., XVII, 598. 47 C S .P. , Foreign, I , 466. 48 Sadler Papers, I , 387-388. 49 I b i d . , pp. 391-392. 50 C.S.P., Foreign, I , 485. 51 Sadler Papers, I , 404. 52 I b i d . , pp. 404-405. 53 l b i d . , p. 441 (Sept. 9 ) . 54 I b i d . , p. 451 (Sept. 19). 55 I b i d . , p. 460. 56 I b i d . , p. 470. 57 I b i d . , p. 527. 58 I b i d . , p. 615 (Nov. 30). 59 I b i d . , p. 461 (Sept. 23). 60 I b i d . , p. 506 (Oct. 20); p. 509 (Oct. 22). 61 I b i d . , p. 522 (Oct. 27). 62 I b i d . , p. 533 (Nov. 3 ) . 63 I b i d . , p. 536.  126  64 I b i d . , p. 567. 65 I b i d . , p. 577. 66 N e v i l l e Williams, Thomas Howard, Fourth Duke of Norfolk (London, 1964). This i s an adulatory and u n c r i t i c a l biography, which tends to put the blame f o r Norfolk's mistakes and errors of judgment on h i s subordinates, wherever possible. 67 Sadler Papers, I , 639. 68 D.N.B., XXI, 692. 69 Sadler Papers, I , 668-669. 70 C.S.P., Foreign, I I (1559-1560), 323. 71 See C.S.P., Foreign, I I , 339 and 343. 72 I b i d . , p. 371. 73 I b i d . , p. 375. 74 I b i d . , p. 387. 75 I b i d . , p. 398. •  76 A C o l l e c t i o n of State Papers R e l a t i n g to A f f a i r s i n the Reigns of King Henry V I I I , King Edward VI, Queen Mary, and Queen E l i z a b e t h . . . L e f t by William C e c i l Lord Burghley, ed. Samuel Haynes, (London, 1740), p. 257. Herea f t e r t h i s i s r e f e r r e d to as Haynes, Burghley Papers. 77 I b i d ., p. 258. 78 C.S.P., Foreign, I I , 489. 79 For t h i s b r i e f account, I have r e l i e d on Cruickshank, Elizabeth's Army, pp. 211-218. 80 Haynes, Burghley Papers, p. 235. 81 Stow, Annales, p. 642. 82 Hayward,. Annals, p. 53. 83 Stow, Annales, p. 642. 84 C e c i l MSS, I , 208. 85 Hayward, Annals, p. 62. 86 Haynes, Burghley Papers, p. 346. 87 Loc. c i t .  88 Loc. c i t . 89 Stow, Annales, p. 644. 90 Loc. c i t . 91 Hayward, Annals, p. 67. 92 I b i d . , pp. 70-72. 93 David Laing, ed., The Works of John Knox, 6 v o l s . (Edinburgh Bannatyne Club, 1846-1864), I I , 66. 94 C.S.P., Foreign, I I I (1560-1561), 242-243. 95 C e c i l MSS, I , 229. 96 C.S.P., Foreign, I I I , 268 (Aug. 29, 1560). 97 Loc . c i t . 98 I b i d . , p. 350 (Oct. 10, 1560).  128  FOOTNOTES CHAPTER V  1 C a l . Patent R o l l s , 15:2 (1560-1563), 438; 15:3 (1563-1566), 23. 2 I b i d . , 15:2, 434. 3 C.S.P., Domestic, I , 338 ( J u l y 8, 1569); 343 (Aug. 18). 4 B r i t i s h Sessional Papers, House of Commons (London, 1878), L X I I , part 1, 404. 5 C r o f t , House of C r o f t , p. 53. 6 J o e l H u r s t f i e l d , The Queen's Wards (London, 1958), p. 339. 7 C a l . Patent R o l l s , 15:1, 294. 8 I b i d . , 15:2, 111. 9 Scudamore Papers, December 1, 1561. 10 Loc. c i t . 11 Calendar of L e t t e r s and State Papers R e l a t i n g to E n g l i s h A f f a i r s , Preserved P r i n c i p a l l y i n the Archives of Simancas, ed. Martin A. S. Hume, 4 v o l s . (London, 1892-1899), I (1558-1567), 540. Hereafter t h i s i s r e f e r r e d to as Simancas MSS. 12 I b i d . , 599. 13 C.S.P., I r e l a n d , p. 333. 14 Simancas MSS, I I (1568-1579), 227. 15 The D.N.B. (XVII, 118) queries Roger's death as being i n 1567 and states that Croft succeeded him i n 1565, which i s patently wrong but probably i n spired by the same misinformation given i n the A.P.C. 16 S. T. B i n d o f f , "The Making of the Statute of A r t i f i c e r s ,' Elizabethan Government and Society, ed. Bindoff, H u r s t f i e l d , and Williams (London, 1961), p. 70. r  17 I b i d . , pp. 76-77. 18 W i l l i a m s , Thomas Howard, Fourth Duke of Norfolk, pp. 255-257. 19 Wallace T. MacCaffrey, The Shaping of the Elizabethan Regime (Princeton, 1968), p. 445.  129;  20 N i c o l a s , "Biographical Memoirs of S i r James C r o f t , " p. 481. , 21 G. R. E l t o n , "The Elizabethan Exchequeur: War i n the Receipt," E l i z a bethan Government and Society, p. 213. 22 A l l e g r a Woodworth, "Purveyance f o r the Royal Household i n the Reign of Queen E l i z a b e t h , " Transactions of the American. P h i l o s o p h i c a l Society, New Ser., XXXV (1945), 8-9. 23 I b i d . , p. 9. 24 Wallace T. MacCaffrey, "Place and Patronage i n Elizabethan P o l i t i c s , " Elizabethan Government and S o c i e t y, p. 105. 25 Woodworth, "Purveyance f o r the Royal Household," p. 9. 26 I b i d . , pp. 12-15. 27 John N i c h o l s , The Progresses and Public Processions of Queen E l i z a b e t h , 3 v o l s . (London, 1823), I,. 544-545. 28 I b i d . , I I , 42-44. 29 I b i d . , I I , 42. 30 Loc. c i t . 31 B r i t i s h Museum, Lansdowne MS, 34, No. 35, "Remembrances to my Lord Treasurer concerning howsehould cawsts," Croft to Burghley, Dec. 7, 1583. 32 Strype, E c c l e s i a s t i c a l Memorials, I I , part 2, 162. 33 The Manuscripts of Lord de l ' I s l e and Dudley, ed. C. L. Kingsford, W. A. Shaw, and G. D. Owen, 6 v o l s . (London: H i s t o r i c a l Manuscripts Commission, 1925-1966), I , 333. 34 Penry Williams, The Council i n the Marches of Wales Under E l i z a b e t h ( C a r d i f f , 1958), p. 3. 35 I b i d . , p. 53. 36 I b i d ., p . 55 . 37 The Manuscripts of the Corporation of Rye, ed. W. J . Hardy and W. Page (London: H i s t o r i c a l Manuscripts Commission, 1892), p. 247. 38 W i l l i a m s , The Council i n the Marches of Wales, p. 236. 39 B r i t i s h Sessional Papers, LXII, part 1, 404, 409, 414, 418, 423, 428. • 40 The Manuscripts of the Corporation of Hereford, ed. W. D. Macray (London: H i s t o r i c a l Manuscripts Commission, 1892), p. 318.  130  41 I b i d . , p. 327. 4 2  M§S of Lord de l ' I s l e and Dudley, pp. 323, 333, 350.  43 A Manuscript Volume i n the Possession of John Dovaston, Esq., of West F e l t o n , Co. Salop., ed. R. L. Kenyon (London: H i s t o r i c a l Manuscripts Commission, 1892), p. 247. 44 The Parliamentary H i s t o r y of England, From the E a r l i e s t Period to the Year 1803 (London, 1806), I (1066-1625), 746. 45 I b i d ., p. 780. 46 The Manuscripts of Lord Kenyon, ed. W. J . Hardy (London: H i s t o r i c a l Manuscripts Commission, 1894), p. 621. 47 I b i d . , p. 623. 48 Parliamentary H i s t o r y of England, I , 843. 49 Harris Nicholas, ed., Memoirs of the L i f e and Times of S i r Christopher Hatton, K.G. (London, 1847), p. 462. 50 Simancas MSS, I I I (1580-1586), 413. 51 I b i d . , p. 461. 52 C S .P., Domestic , I , 595. 53 I b i d . , p. 613. 54 N i c h o l s , Progresses of Queen E l i z a b e t h , I I , 73. 55 I b i d . , p. 256. 56 I b i d . , pp. 86, 268-269. 57 B r i t i s h Museum, Lansdowne MS 37, Burghley Papers, No. 47, 1583. 58 C.S.P., Domestic, I I (1581-1590), 90 (Jan. 10, 1583). . See also p. 91 (Jan. 15). 59 I b i d . , p. 419. 60 I b i d . , p. 91 61 C r o f t , House of C r o f t , p. 81. 62 Simancas MSS, I I , 227. 63 I b i d . , I I , 241. 64 I b i d . , I I , 587.  131  65 I b i d . , I I , 674. 66 Loc. c i t . 67 I b i d . , I I I , 391 68 I b i d . , I I I , 424. 69 C.S.P., Foreign, X, 514. 70 D.N.B., V I , 283-284. 71 I b i d . , X V I I I , 532-535. 72 C.S.P., Foreign, XVII, 443. 73 Mary Dewar, S i r Thomas Smith (London, 1964), p. 133. 74 I b i d . , p. 181. 75 Richard Deacon, John Dee (London, 1968), p. 13. 76 Henry E l l i s , ed., O r i g i n a l L e t t e r s of Eminent L i t e r a r y Men of the Sixteenth, Seventeenth, and Eighteenth Centuries, Camden S o c , 1st Ser., No. 23 (London, 1843), p. 39. 77 Deacon, John Dee, p. 82. 78 Dee, John, The P r i v a t e Diary of Dr. John Dee, ed. James Orchard H a l l i w e l l , Camden S o c , 1st Ser., No. 19 (London, 1842), p. 11. 79 D.N.B., XVII, 1092.  132  FOOTNOTES CHAPTER VI  1 Introductory information has been obtained from the following four sources: G. R. E l t o n , England Under the Tudors, pp. 295-302, 357-364; Garrett Mattingley, The Armada (Boston, 1959), pp. 187-193; Conyers Read, Lord Burghley and Queen E l i z a b e t h (London, 1965), pp. 391-409; Conyers Read, Mr Secretary Walsingham and the P o l i c y o f Queen E l i z a b e t h , 3 v o l s . (Oxford, 1925), I I I , 216-301. 2 D.N.B., XX, 691-695. 3  C.S.P., Foreign, XXI:2, 45.  4 Simancas MSS, IV, 138. 5 Read, Lord Burghley and Queen E l i z a b e t h ,  p. 397.  6 C.S.P., Foreign, XXI:2, 143. 77 I b i d . , p. 59. 8 I b i d . , p. 143. 9 Loc. c i t . 10 C.S.P., Foreign, XXI:4, 43, 224. 11 D.N.B., V, 387-388. 12 D.N.B., XVII, 129. 13 C S .P., Foreign, XXI:4, 43. 14 I b i d . , pp. 130, 186, 418. 15 Simancas MSS, IV, 236. 16 I b i d . , p. 237. 17 C.S.P., Foreign, XXI:4, 96-98 (Croft to the Queen). 18 I b i d . , p. 129 (Croft to Burghley). 19 I b i d . , pp. 129-130 (Croft to Burghley). 20 I b i d . , p. 131 (Robert C e c i l to Burghley). 21 I b i d ., p. 145.  133  22 I b i d . , p. 299. 23 Loc. c i t . 24 I b i d . , p. 314 (Dale to Burghley). 25 I b i d . , p. 316 (Cobham to Walsingham). 26 I b i d . , p. 334. 27 B r i t i s h Museum, A d d i t i o n a l MSS 38,823, S i r B. Hoby: Commonplace Book." , r  28 C.S.P., Foreign, XXI:4, 347 (Dale to Burghley). 29 I b i d . , P- 348. 30 Loc. c i t . 31 Loc. c i t . 32 I b i d . , P- 351. 33 I b i d . , P- 352 (Cobham to Burghley). 34 I b i d . , P- 355. 35 Loc. c i t . 36 I b i d . , P- 363. 37 I b i d . , P- 413 (the Queen to the Commissioners) 38 I b i d . , P- 423 (Croft to the Queen). 39 I b i d . , P- 464. 40 I b i d . , P- 465. 41 I b i d . , P- 499 . 42 I b i d . , P- 515 (Cobham to Walsingham). 43 C.S.P. , Foreign, XXII, 46. 44 A.P.C. , XVI, 249-250. 45 A.P.C. , XVII, 11. 46 C.S.P., Foreign, XXI:4, x x v i i i (Preface, A l l e n B. Hinds, ed.). 47 Cited i n John L. Motley, H i s t o r y of the United Netherlands from the Death of W i l l i a m the S i l e n t to the Twelve Years' Truce, 1609, 6 v o l s . (New York, 1900), I I I , 222.  48 Strype, Annals of the Reformation, I I I , part 2, 615-617. 49 I b i d . , p. 616. 50 Stow, Annales, p. 750. 51 Strype, Annals of the Reformation, I I I , part 2, 616. 52 I b i d . , p. 125. 53 B r i t i s h Sessional Papers, L X I I , 423. 54 C.S.P., Domestic, I I (1581-1590), 592. 55 N i c h o l s , Progresses of Queen E l i z a b e t h , I I I , 9, 19. 56 A.P.C., XIX, 275. 57 C.S.P., Domestic, I I , 688 (Sept. 10, 1590).  135  FOOTNOTES CHAPTER VII  1 R. H. Tawney, "The Rise of the Gentry, 1558-1640," The Economic History Reveiw, XI (1941), 4. 2 Lawrence Stone, The C r i s i s of the A r i s t o c r a c y , 1558-1641 (Oxford, 1965), p. 52. 3 Loc. c i t . 4 C r o f t , House of C r o f t , pp. 40-47. 5 I b i d . , pp. 47-51. 6 Anthony E s l e r , The A s p i r i n g Mind of the Elizabethan Younger Generation (Durham, North C a r o l i n a , 1966), p. xx. 7 I b i d . , p. x i x . 8 J . E. Neale, "The Elizabethan P o l i t i c a l Scene," Essays i n Elizabethan H i s t o r y (London, 1958), pp. 61-62. 9 E s l e r , The A s p i r i n g Mind, p. x i x . 10 I b i d . , p. xx. 11 J . E. Neale, "The Biographical Approach to History," Essays i n E l i z a bethan H i s t o r y , p. 228. 12 I b i d . , p. 233. 13 I b i d . , p. 225. 14 Loc. c i t .  136  BIBLIOGRAPHY  A l l items i n the Bibliography are a v a i l a b l e i n the L i b r a r y of the Univers i t y of B r i t i s h Columbia, except those marked with an a s t e r i s k . 1. * A.  PRIMARY SOURCES  ORIGINAL MANUSCRIPTS IN THE COLLECTION OF THE BRITISH MUSEUM:  A d d i t i o n a l MSS, 4,160: C o l l e c t i o n of State L e t t e r s and Papers. A d d i t i o n a l MSS, 11,049: Scudamore Papers: V o l , IX. A d d i t i o n a l MSS, 14,027: Caesar Papers. A d d i t i o n a l MSS, 38,823: S i r B. Hoby: Commonplace Book. Cottonian MSS, C a l i g u l a B, IX: Transacta Inter Angliam et Scotiam, 1556-1570, Vol I I . 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