Sir Henry Sidney retires

Margaret Anne Cusack
start of chapter | Chapter XXVI

Sir Henry Sidney retired from office finally on the 26th of May, 1578. He dates his Memoir from "Ludlow Castell, with more payne than harte, the 1st of March, 1582." In this document he complains bitterly of the neglect of his services by Government, and bemoans his losses in piteous strains. He describes himself as "fifty-four yeres of age, toothlesse and trembling, being five thousand pounds in debt." He says he shall leave his sons £20,000 worse off than his father left him. In one place he complains that he had not as much ground as would "feede a mutton," and he evidently considers his services were worth an ampler remuneration; for he declares: "I would to God the country was yet as well as I lefte it almost fyve yeres agoe." If he did not succeed in obtaining a large grant for his services, it certainly was not for want of asking it; and if he did not succeed in pacifying the country, it was not for lack of summary measures. Even in his postscript he mentions how he hanged a captain of Scots, and he thinks "very nere twenty of his men."