ANNE OF DENMARK, Queen of James I. Autograph letter signed ("Anna R" at head) to the future Duke of Buckingham ("My king dog"), [1617]
Lot 9
ANNE OF DENMARK, Queen of James I. Autograph letter signed ("Anna R" at head) to the future Duke of Buckingham ("My king dog"), [1617]
Sold for £2,250 (US$ 3,779) inc. premium
Lot Details
ANNE OF DENMARK, Queen of James I
Autograph letter signed ("Anna R" at head) to the future Duke of Buckingham ("My king dog"), the letter addressed "To the Earle of Buckingham", thanking him for his letter but assuring him that she desires no such thanks ("...I have done anie thing for yow I think you worthie of it..."): "here is a report, that the King would have me meete him a [sic] Woodstock/ he writes nothing of it himself, the iourie [sic] is farre and incommodious/ his staie there but three daies/ I should be verie glad that would spare me yet if her please not I shalbe readie to performe his pleasure I pray yow, let me knowe it"; and ending: "So wishing yow much happiness, and Continuall faithfulnesses to your Maister, I rest"; with autograph address leaf, contemporary docket ("the Queen"), twin seals in red wax impressed with the royal AR cypher and ends of pink or red silk ties, one page, eighteenth- or nineteenth-century note on address leaf, some staining and strengthening on verso, address-panel dust-stained where exposed, but still nevertheless an attractive item, small 4to, [?Hampton Court, probably late summer 1617]


  • ANNE OF DENMARK TO "MY KING DOG", HER HUSBAND'S FAVOURITE, THE DUKE OF BUCKINGHAM, when Earl of Buckingham. Although undated, this letter must have been written at some time in 1617, between its recipient being created Earl of Buckingham on 6th January and being elevated to the marquessate on 1st January following. It was in the autumn of that same year that James made his famous declaration to the Privy Council that 'You may be sure that I love the Earl of Buckingham more than anyone else, and more than you who are here assembled. I wish to speak in my own behalf, and not to have it thought to be a defect, for Jesus Christ did the same, and therefore I cannot be blamed. Christ had his John, and I have my George'. Our letter may well refer to the King's proposed visit to Woodstock that September, news of which the Venetian Ambassador reported on 23 July 1617: 'His Majesty is going to Woodstock (Ustoch), a place in England seventy miles from London, where he is to arrive on the 16th September, and will be met by the queen, prince and councillors' (23 July 1617, Calendar of State Papers relating to English Affairs in the Archives of Venice, xiv, 1615-17, 1908). The Queen was at this time suffering from increasing ill-health and, as our letter shows, was unwilling to travel. From that September she was too ill to leave Hampton Court, and was to die on 2 March the following year.

    It had in fact been Anne, together with the George Abbot, Archbishop of Canterbury, who had first introduced the young George Villiers to the notice of the King and advanced his claims, not least in order to supplant the current favourite, Somerset, who was supported by the Howard family and the Catholic faction. Two other earlier letters by her to Buckingham, addressed as 'My kind dog', are in the British Library, Harl MS 6986, ff. 132 and 136.
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