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Sir Richard Saltonstall and Giles Fletcher letter to Sir Francis Walsingham

 Digital Record
Identifier: VMSS457_I43_O1
Image of Sir Richard Saltonstall and Giles Fletcher letter to Sir Francis Walsingham
Image of Sir Richard Saltonstall and Giles Fletcher letter to Sir Francis Walsingham


  • 1587 August 13


Biographical / Historical

Sir Richard Saltonstall (approsimately 1521-1601) was a wealthy London merchant and politician in 16th Century England. He was a member of the city council by 1583, a Member of Parliament in 1586, and an alderman by 1588. He served as Sheriff of the City of London for 1589 and was elected Lord Mayor of London for 1597.

Biographical / Historical

Giles Fletcher (approximately 1549-1611) was an English poet, historian, diplomat, and member of the English Parliament. In 1586, Fletcher was appointed as the Remembrancer of the City of London, an office which he held until 1605. In 1588 he was an ambassador to Russia to reestablish the treaty with tsar Feodor I of Russia. Fletcher published a treatise, "Of the Russe Common Wealth" (1591). The treaty to be reestablished was primarily concerning the English trade, but before he departed Queen Elizabeth made him a Master of Requests. Fletcher's account gives a vivid description of the Russian world pre-1600. He is best known for his sonnet "Licia."

Biographical / Historical

Sir Francis Walsingham (1532-1590) was principal secretary to Queen Elizabeth I of England from 20 December 1573 until his death and is popularly remembered as her "spymaster".

Born to a well-connected family of gentry, Walsingham attended Cambridge University and travelled in continental Europe before embarking on a career in law at the age of twenty. He served as English ambassador to France in the early 1570s and witnessed the St. Bartholomew's Day massacre. As principal secretary to Elizabeth I, he supported exploration, colonization, the use of England's maritime strength and the plantation of Ireland. He worked to bring Scotland and England together. He oversaw operations that penetrated Spanish military preparation, gathered intelligence from across Europe, disrupted a range of plots against Elizabeth and secured the execution of Mary, Queen of Scots.

Francis Walsingham died on 6 April 1590, at his house in Seething Lane. He was buried privately in a simple ceremony in Old St Paul's Cathedral. The grave and monument were destroyed in the Great Fire of London in 1666. His name appears on a modern monument in the crypt listing the important graves lost.


1 sheet (1 page) ; 29 x 19 cm



General Note

Letter signed by Sir Richard Saltonstall and Giles Fletcher, to Walsingham. Written in English from Hamburg, Germany, 13 August 1587. Forwarding to Walsingham a complaint of certain German merchants that they had been plundered by Englishmen. Saltonstall and Fletcher say that it must first be determined whether the so-called German goods were really Spanish, which were seizable in reprisal for Philip's seizure of English ships.


Repository Details

Part of the L. Tom Perry Special Collections Repository

1130 HBLL
Brigham Young University
Provo Utah 84602 United States