Back to search results

Lord Edward Bruce, and Sir Edward Sackville 'Challenges (6 September 1613)'

British Library, Additional MS 44848, ff. 177r-179v


The Lord Bruse to Mr Mr Edward Sackuile (now Earle of Dorsett) his relation of the manner of the Combat & death of ye Lord Bruse Baron of Kinlosse sent to his Freinds in England 1613.

The Lord Bruses challenge to Mr Sackuile A monsr: monsr Sackuile I that am in France, heare how much Yow attribute to yor selfe in this tyme that I haue giuen the world leaue to sing your praises: and fame the truest Almanack to tell you how much I suffer And if you call to memory when I gaue you my hand last I told you I receiued the hast for a truer resolution ifconsiliation yow be the noble gentleman, my then { saw } speake, come, and doe him reason, that should recyte your trialls Yow owe Your birth & Country were I not confident your honnor giues you the same Courage to doe mee right, that it did to doe mee wronge, Bee Mr of yor owne weapon and tyme, the place wheresoeuer, I will waightte on you, by doeing this Yow shall shorten reuenge, and cleare ye iealous opinione the world hath of both our Worthies Ed: Bruse

Mr Edward Sackuiles answere

A Monsr monsr Le baron de Kinlosse As It shall be allwaies farr from mee to seeke a quarrell, soe will I allwayes bee ready to meete any that desire to make tryall of my vallour by soe faire a course as yow require, a wittness whereof you shalbe, who wthin this month shall receiue a strickt accompt of tyme place & weapon, by him that shall conduct You:177vEdward Sackvile you theither where Yow shall find mee disposed to giue You honerable sattifaccione In the meane tyme, bee as secrett of the appointment as it seemes you are desirous of it Edward Sackfill

Mr Sackueils second letter to my Lord. Bruse from Tergous

A monsir: monsr Le baron de Kinloss in Paris Sr I am ready at Tergous a towne in Zeland to giue You what satisfaction your sword can render yow; accompanied wth a worthy gent’ for my second, in degree a Knight, And for your conveniencies I will not lymitt You a peremptory day But desire yow to make it definite, and speedy; for your honor, & feare of preventione, utill w[hi]ch tyme you shall find mee there Ed: Sackueile Tergous 10. of August 1613

My Lord Bruses answeere

A monsr Monsr Sackueill

I haue receiued Yor letter by your man, and accknowledge you haue dealt nobly w[i]th mee, and now I come w[i]th all possible hast to see you. Edward Bruse

Mr. Edward Sackuiles Letter to A Freind of the manner of the combatt and death betwixt him and the Lord Bruse Baron of Kinlose 1613 Worthy Sr As I am not ignorant (soe ought I to be sensible) of the falce aspertions some authorless tongues haue laid upon mee, in the reports of the unfortunate passage late ly happen[n]ed betweene the Lord Bruse and my selfe, w[hi]ch as they are spreed here, soe may I iustly feare they raigne also where you are There are but 2 wayes to resolue doubt[es] of this nature by oath or sword, the first is due to Maiestraits, and Communicable to freind[es], the other to such as malitiously slaunder & impudently defend their assertion Your loue not my meritt assures mee you hold mee a freind, w[hi]ch esteeme I am soe desirous to retaine; doe mee the right to understand the truth of that and in my behalfe informe others, who either are or may be infected wth sinister rumors much preiudiciall to that faire opinione I desire to hold amongst all worthy persons And on ye faith of a gent’ ye relation I shall giue yow is neither more nor less the bare truth The178rMr Sackueill[es] relation of his Combate wth: the Lord Bruse The inclosed containes the first Citatione sent mee from Paris by a Scottish gent’ who deliuered it to mee in Darbisheire at my ffather in Lawes howse, After it followes my then answeere returned him by the same bearer; The next is ye accomplishmt of my first promise, being a p[ar]ticuler assignatione of place and weapons, w[hi]ch I sent by a seruant of myne by Post from Roterdam assoone as I landed there. The receipt of w[hi]ch ioyned w[i]th an accknowledgemt of my too faire Courage toward[es] the deceased Lord is testefied by ye last w[i]th period[es] that buisness till wee mett at Tergous in Zeland it being the place alotted for Randeuous {whoe} hee accompaned w[i]th one Mr Grayford an english gent’ for his second, a Chyrurgion and a man, arrived w[i]th all the speed he could and there haueing once rendred himselfe, I addressed my second Sr John Heydon to lett him understand, that now all followed should be done by consent As concerning the termes, whereon wee should fight as also ye place to our second[es] wee gaue power for theis appointment[es] who agreed wee should goe to {Antwerper} from thence to Bergenupzone where in the midway, but a village deuides the states territory from the Archduk[es] And there was the destined Stage; to the end that haueing ended hee that could might presently exempt himselfe from the iustice of the Countrey by retyering into the Dominione not offended, It was further concluded, that in case any should fall or slipp, that then the Combatt should cease & hee whose ill fortune had soe subiected him was to acknowlidge his life to haue ben in ye others hand[es], but in case one parties sword should breake (because that could only Chance by hazard) it was agreed that the other take noe aduantage, but either then be made friends, or els upon euen termes goe to it againe, Thus theis conclusions beinge by each of them realted to his partie; was by us both approued, & assented unto Accordingly wee imbarqued for Antwerpe, and by reason my Lord (as I conceiue because hee could not handsomely wthout dainger of discouery) had not paired the sword I sent him at Paris, bringing one of the same length but twice as broad, my second excepted against it, and aduised mee to match my owne, and send him the Choice; w[hi]ch I obeyed (it being as you know the challengers privelidge to elect his weapon) at the deliuvery of the sword[es], wch was performed by Sr John Heydon, it pleased the Lord Bruse to Chose myne owne, and Then (past expectatione) hee told him that hee found himselfe soe farr behind hand, as little of my blood would not serue his turne; and therefore he was now resolued to haue mee alone, because hee knewe (for I will use his owne word[es]) that soe worthy a gent’, and my friend could not indure to stand by, and sett him to doe that w[hi]ch hee must to sattisfie himselfe and his honnor. Here upon Sr John Heydon, replied such intentions were bloody178vMr Sackfieiles relation of his combatt wth. ye Lord Bruse bloody and butchery farr unfitting soe noble a personage who should desire to bleed for reputatione not for life wthall adding hee thought himselfe iniured (being come thus farr) now to be prohibited from executinge these honorable offices hee came for; The Lord for answeere only reitterated his former resolutione, whereupon Sr John leaueing him the sword hee had elected, deliuered mee the other, w[i]th his determinationes, the w[hi]ch (not for matter but mannor) soe moued mee, as though to my rememberance I had not of a long while eaten more liberally then at diner, & therefore unfitt for such an actione seing ye Chyrurgions hold a wound upon a full stomack much more daungerous then otherwise I requested my second to Cert efie him, I would presently decide the difference and that therefore hee should immediately meete mee on horsback at that gate of the Towne where the {lots} should direct us the names of the port[es] being put into a hatt, and hee draweing it hapened to be the gate that led to Lilles of this course hee accepted, & forth wth wee mett at the forenamed place where being searched by our second[es], wee were turned togeather on horseback only waighted on by our Chyrurgions they being unarmed, togeather we rodd (but one before the other some twelue score) about some two English myles, & then passion haueing soe weake an enemie to assaile, as my direction easely became victor, and useing his power made mee obedient to his Com[m]andemt; I being verily madd wth. anger, the Lord Bruse should thirst after my life w[i]th a kind of assuredness, seing I had come soe farr, and needlessly to giue him leaue to regaine his lost reputatione I badd him alight w[i]th all willingnes hee quickly grainted & there in a meadow (anckle deepe at least in water, bidding fare well to our doublets in our shirts, began to Charge each haueing a fore com[m]anded our Chyrurgions to wthdraw themselues a pretty distance from us coniuring them besides as they respected our fauours or their owne safty not to stirr, but suffer us to execute our pleasures wee being fully resolued, (God forgiue us) to dispatch each other by what meanes wee could I made A thrust at myne Enemie but was short & in draweing back my Arme I receaued a greate wound wth. a blow thereon which I interpreted as a reward for my short shooting but in reuenge I prest into him though I mist him also, and then receaued a wound in my right papp w[hi]ch past leauell through my body almost to my backe and grapeling togeather hee catcht hold on my sword I on his, & there wee wrasled for the too greatest and dearest prises wee could euer expect tryall for honor honor and279rMr Sackvills relation of hisHonor and life in which stragling my hande haueing but an ordinary Gloue on it loste one of her Seruants (though the meanest) which hunge by a skinne, and to sight yet remaines as before, and I am put in hope one day to haue the use also; But at last breathles yet keeping our holdes; there paste on both sides p[ro]posic[i]ons quittinge each other Swordes: But when Amity was dead, Confidence could not Liue, and who should quitt first was the Question which on nether parte either would p[er]forme, and restriuing, a, fresh, with a kicke, and a wrench togeather , I freed my long Captiued weapon which incontinently Leaueing at his Throate (being Mr still of his), I demaunded if hee would aske his life, or yeild his Sword (though in that emynent dainger) hee brauely denyed to doe, my selfe being wounded and feeling losse of blood haueing three Conduites run[n]ing on me, begann to make me fainte, and hee Couragiously p[er]sisting not to Accord to eyther of my p[ro]posic[i]ons, remembraunce of his former bloody desire, and feeling of my p[re]sente State, I struke at his harte, but with his auoydinge mist my ayme, yet paste through the body, and draweing through my Sword, repaste it through againe, through another place, when hee Cryed, Oh I am slayne, Seconding his speech with all the force hee had, desirous to caste me; but being too weake after I had defended his Assault, I easely became Mr of him, layinge him on his backe, when I being ouer him, I redemanded, if he woulde requeste his Life, but it seemed he prized it not at soe deare a Rate, to bee beholdinge for it, brauely replyed, hee scorned it, which Answere of his was soe noble and worthy, as I protest I could not finde in my harte to offer him any more Violence, onely keepinge him downe, till at length his Chirurgeon a farre of Cryed out imedyately he would dye if his wounds were not stopped whereupon I asked if hee desired his Chirur= gyon179vCombat wth. the Lord Bruse Chirurgion should come, which hee accepted of and soe being drawne away, I neuer offered to take his sword, accompting it unhumane to Robb a dead man, for soe I held him to bee, This thus ended I retyred to my Chirurgion; in whose Armes, after I had remayned a while for wante of blood I lost my sighte and with all this (as I then thought), my life also, but stronge water, and his diligence quickly reccouered me, when I escaped a great daunger, for my Lods: Surgeon when noe bodye dremed of it ranne full at me, with his Lords Sword, and had not myne with my Sword interposed himselfe, I had beene slayne by those Base handes, although the Lord Bruse then wolteringe in his blood, and past expectac[i]on of Life (Conformable to all his former Caryage which was undaunted and noble) cryed out, Rascall holde thy handes. Soe may I prosper as I haue dealte sincrly with you in this Relation, the which I pray with the inclosed deliuer to my Lord Chamberlaine:

Louayne this Sixte of September Ano: 1613

No image