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1597 - Norreys, John - To Robert Cecil

Allusion
Date 10 Jun. 1597
Author Norreys, John
Title Letter from Sir John Norreys to Sir Robert Cecil
Mentions The Irish disposed still to have some Robin Hood to extirpate the English

By Henrik Thiil Nielsen, 2013-08-01. Revised by Henrik Thiil Nielsen, 2018-07-28.

Allusion

[...] His brother [Sir Thomas Norreys] has happily cut off, both by prosecution and justice, many of the most dangerous rebels in the province; and lately had the head of Rory M'Murrough, brother to Murrough Oge, brought to him. He doubts not to have the other's head very shortly, "but as fast as they are consumed, there springs up an ill in their places; there continuing a malicious disposition in most of this country to have still some Robin Hood to seek to weed out and extirpate the English; and the canker of this humour will not be cured but by a sharp corsey." [...][1]

Source notes

MS ref.: Vol. CXCIX, No. 94. Marginal note: "June 10. Waterford." The cited text is part calendar summary or paraphrase of the original, part quote.

IRHB comments

The writer of this letter, Lord General Sir John Norreys (c.1547-3 July 1597), was the foremost military leader during the reign of Elizabeth II, infamous for the massacre of women and children on the island of Rathlin (1575). He died less than a month after sending the letter. Its recipient, Robert Cecil, 1st Earl of Salisbury (1563?-1612) was Lord High Treasurer May 1598-24 May 1612, Lord Privy Seal 1598-1612, Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster 8 October 1597-1599, and Secretary of State 5 July 1590-24 May 1612. The allusion has not been noted in previous lists or studies.

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