I Received yours of the 21. instant, even now in answer to mine of the 20th instant, and I must be necessitated to tell you, that no man so well knows where the shooe pi [...]cheth him, as he that weares it; and my ten yeares experi­ence of afflictions, (without to this day ever obtaining one penny-worth of Justice,) being a younger Brother, and having not one foot of land in all the world to support me, hath run me now at last in ma­ny straights, having wife and children to sustaine and provide for, as well as my selfe, so that I must ingenuously confesse unto you, if I had not a little credit now and then to borrow a summe of money, wee must have been forced ere now to have eate one another: and I must tell you, that I can not alwayes live upon that score, and debts must either be paid in some time, or else lenders will grow weary, [Page] especially when they have no other securitis but the bare word of a man in misery, and present poverty, and guilty of my owne death, I dare not be, but must doe the utmost that the best reason GOD hath given unto mee, will dictate unto mee to preserve my selfe, and truely and before God I speake it, I have left no meanes I could thinke of unassayed to prevaile with you, to make my report, or at least vigorously to endeavour it; for faine I would have been at the House to have paid them according to their deserts, but I could not come at them so fully as I would, but I must furiously smite you, (which I protest with ingenuitie I was exceeding loath to doe.) In regard you never by your selfe, or under your hand, or by any other way, that I could build upon for an avouched evidence, did ever give me, before now, to understand that you had faithfully en­deavoured to discharge vour dutie, whereunto you were often preft by mee. Now you tell mee you have offered my report twenty times, but could not be heard by your House. I am glad to heare from your selfe, you have so done, and shall give credit to it, and wish I had had the same information from you the sooner, that so I might not have falne so foule upon your selfe, who had not a small pro­portion of my affection; and to your framing an answer to my prin­ted Epistle to you of the 30th of May last, I desire with all my heart, you may goe on, and not spare me, nor any man else in your way. And I must informe you, that when your friend and mine, Mr W. W. tould me of it, I was very glad and earnestly entreated him to presse you to finish it, telling him what ever was in it against mee, if you could not get it printed, I would get it done for you, and pay for it my selfe. Sir, goe on I beseech you with vigor and strength without delay, to discharge your dutie about my report, and if up­on a hearing before indifferent men, chosen by us, I have done you any wrong, I will abide the award, and punctually performe it, what ever it be, if within my power, and I doubt not but fully to make it evident, that I have been, and am as really your friend and servant, to the utmost of my power, as you are or have been;

John Lilburne.

FOR LIEVT: COLONELL Iohn Lilbourne At his Lodgings in the Tower, PRESENT THESE.


BY yours of the 23th (outside and inside) I am earnesily invited to come abroad in print, for which I have not onely your advice and encou­ragement, offering to defray the charges thereof your selfe (notwithstanding your poverty;) but I have your example too, (the most taking way of perswasion;) for the same day wherein I received your last by my man, I met your former Letter printed: All which is but con­current with my own resolution, so expressed when I wrote unto you; and if I be not altogether so early at the Presse as you might expect, (because your selfe would haply have made more haste thither) you may be pleased to impute it, not to a want of knowing what to say in my own behalfe, nor to a loathnesse of being at the charge to publish it, but partly to a kinde of tendernesse as the first setting my foot upon that stage where I was never yet (otherwise then passively,) and partly to the multitude of other businesses, which were enough to distract a better brain [Page] then mine, and shake the penne out of a mans hand after he had sworn to write. In so much, as if every one of those whom I have wronged like you (that is, for whom I have not procured what they desired) should require the same satisfaction from mee that you doe, Martins Pamphlets bound up in a volume would fill a considerable roome in a Booksellers shop, though stuffed with nothing but what is most true for the matters overred therein, and very civill to the persons mentioned. Therefore when you shall finde your ungentle lan­guage answered with mildnesse, I doe freely disclaim the deserving of any thanks at your hands, as if I spared you, where in truth I spare my selfe, thinking it lesse credit for mee to out-run you in evill speaking, then to goe slowly on your arrands. Ʋpon this very ground I beseech you not to trouble your selfe, (much lesse any body els) about repairing of mee, till I feele my selfe dilapidated; for, be­sides that, (in my conscience) you never meant mee harme in any thing you said of mee, had your meaning been never so bad toward mee: I doe not take my selfe to be within the reach of a tongue: bitter words are indeed compared to arrowes, for so perhaps he fan­cies them that utters them, and some wise men, at whom they are well aimed, but I am such a foole as to conceive they are alwayes shot upright into the aire, and either vanish there, or (if ever you heare any more nowes of them) they are sure to light upon the head of him that shot them. Whether you have been mistaken or no in your censures of mee, no man shall be Judge but your selfe, nor should have been witnes, if there had not been more need of humouring you, then of clearing:

Your most affectionate friend and servant, H. M.

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