Privy Council Letter to the Lord Mayor

LMA: COL/RMD/PA/01/002

f 5v (3 February) (Hampton Court)

After our very hartie commendations to your Lordship Whearas certein infourmation is given that very great multitudes of all sorts of people do daylie frequent & resort to common playes lately again set vp in & about London. whearby it is vpon good cause feared that the dangerous infection of the plague, by Gods great mercy and goodnes well slaked, may again very dangerously encrease and break foorth to the great losse and preiudice of hir Maiestes Subiects in generall & especially to those of that Citie of whose safetie & well doing hir Highnes hath alwayes had an especiall regard as by the last ‸⸢years⸣ experience by lyke occasions & resort to playes it soddainly encreased from a very little number to that greatnes of mortallitie which ensued. Wee thearfore thought it very expedient to require your Lordship foorthwith to take strait order that thear bee no more publique playes or enterludes exercised by any Companie whatsoever within the compas of five miles distance from London till vpon better lykelyhood and assurance of health farther direction may bee given from vs to the contrary. So wee bid your Lordship very hartily farewell. ffrom the Court at Hampton. the 3. of February. 1593.

Your Lordships very loving friend.

Iohn Cantuar Iohn Puckering. Charles Howard
Thomas Buckhurst. Robert Cecyll. Iohn Fortescue

To our very good Lord Mr Alderman Buckle
Lord Maior of the Citie of London.

  • Marginalia
    • For restraint of playes.
  • Footnotes
    • After: A in display script
    • Hampton: in a more formal script
    • Iohn Cantuar: John Whitgift (1530 or 1531?–1604), archbishop of Canterbury, 1583–1604
    • Iohn Puckering: Sir John Puckering (1543 or 1544–96), Lord Keeper of the Seal, 1592–6
    • Charles Howard: Charles Howard (1536–1624), second Baron Howard of Effingham and tenth earl of Nottingham, Lord Admiral, 1585–1618/19
    • Thomas Buckhurst: Thomas Sackville (c 1536–1608), first Baron Buckhurst
    • Robert Cecyll: Sir Robert Cecil (1563–1612)
    • Iohn Fortescue: Sir John Fortescue (1533–1607), Chancellor of the Exchequer, 1589–1603
    • Iohn Cantuar … Fortesue: names of signatories in a more formal script
  • Endnote

    The privy council here revives the restraint of plays for fear of plague. Henslowe's diary shows that performances at the Rose had resumed, with Sussex's men in residence by 27 December 1593, but there was a break between 6 February, shortly after this order, until the queen's men in company with Sussex's men began another run on 1 April (DC: MS VII, ff 8v–9, see the Henslowe-Alleyn Digitisation Project, MS 7, 8v and 9r.

  • Document Description

    Record title: Privy Council Letter to the Lord Mayor
    Repository: LMA
    Shelfmark: COL/RMD/PA/01/002
    Repository location: London

    This letter from the Privy Council to Sir Cuthbert Buckle, Lord Mayor of London, is only preserved in the city's Remembrancia, f 5v.

    For an abstract of the document and details of its transcription history, see the related EMLoT event record.

    January 1593/4–October 1609; English; paper; 178 leaves; 330mm x 230mm; modern pencil foliation (used here) over ink foliation 1A, 1B–119 (with later entry numbers); some pages repaired; bound in white vellum on boards with tooled heraldic shield, title on spine in black ink (first word written sideways): 'Remembrancia. | II | 1593 | 35 Eliz. | 1609 | 7. Jacob.' Entries individually numbered in later pencil: the relevant entry is numbered 6.

  • Manuscript Images

    © London Metropolitan Archives (City of London), COL/RMD/PA/01/002

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