WILLIAM PENN. Autograph letter signed ("WmPenn"), to Sir John Rodes,  York, "30th 9mo [November] [16]86"
Lot 359
WILLIAM PENN
Autograph letter signed ("WmPenn"), to Sir John Rodes, York, "30th 9mo [November] [16]86"
Sold for £3,625 (US$ 6,117) inc. premium
Auction Details
Lot Details
WILLIAM PENN
Autograph letter signed ("WmPenn"), to Sir John Rodes, offering advice on his spiritual welfare ("...I rejoice that god has drawn neer to thy heart with his blessed Spirit; and I beseech him to be good unto thee, & make thy passage easy & sweet through the holy death of the Cross to that life & Kingdom which shall never have end. o keep thyn eye to that holy truth that has visited thy Soul, & it will give thee strength to overcome all the difficultyes in the way. 'Twill be thy eternall Crown if thou art faithfull. be retired, few in words, especially about religion; hide the word in thy heart, by which the young man cleanses his way & it will make thee wise to Salvation...") and on his education ("...I intend some books for thee, & a short method or course of exercise, which may be for thy proffitting. Salute me to thy Sister. walke wisely. the lord be with thee & be the holy guide of thy youth, that thy age may be honorable in him in whom stands the honest nobility, & where all nations must have the blessing, if ever they will be blest..."); autograph address panel ("For my esteemed/ Friend Sr Jo: Rodes/ at/ Balbrugh Hall"); with note of provenance (see below), York, "30th 9mo [November] [16]86" 2 pages, old repairs and paper-strengthening at centre and at edges (especially at seal-tears), some dust and other staining, but nevertheless still in reasonably attractive and sound condition, 4to, York, "30th 9mo [November] [16]86"

Footnotes

  • 'BE RETIRED, FEW IN WORDS, ESPECIALLY ABOUT RELIGION': WILLIAM PENN'S LETTER OF ADMONITION TO A YOUNG QUAKER. The recipient of this letter, Sir John Rodes, fourth and last baronet of Barlborough Hall (1670-1743), was sixteen, or nearly sixteen, years old at the time. His mother and two married sisters were members of Pen's Quaker circle, and other letters to him by Penn are printed by S.F. Locker Lampson, A Quaker Post Bag: Letters to Sir John Rodes of Barlborough Hall..., 1910. Our letter is printed by Mrs Colquhoun Grant, Quaker and Courtier: The Life and Work of William Penn, 1907, p. 123. However, she misreads the Quaker style of dating ("9.mo" referring to November prior to the calendar change of 1752), and gives the year as 1680 as opposed to 1686. The earlier date seems unlikely as Penn is known to have been in London, rather than York, in late November 1680 busy negotiating the terms of the Pennsylvania charter (see William Penn and the Founding of Pennsylvania: A Documentary History, edited by Jean R. Soderlund, 1983, especially p. 32). The letter was presented to Penn's descendant Lord Ranfurly by Reginald Caulfield in 1900, having been purchased at the sale of the Chevalier de Chatelain, author and translator, at Sotheby's, 5 May 1900 (see the note of provenance).

    Penn at this time wielded considerable influence with James II, who had recently sent him on an unofficial mission to the Prince and Princess of Orange to sound them out on the possible repeal of the Penal Laws and Test Act. That same year saw the publication of his plea in favour of religious toleration, A Perswasive to Moderation to Church-Dissenters, in Prudence and Conscience. The following spring he was to help draft the Declaration of Indulgence.
Auction information

This auction is now finished. If you are interested in consigning in future auctions, please contact the specialist department. If you have queries about lots purchased in this auction, please contact customer services.

Buyers' Obligations

ALL BIDDERS MUST AGREE THAT THEY HAVE READ AND UNDERSTOOD BONHAMS' CONDITIONS OF SALE AND AGREE TO BE BOUND BY THEM, AND AGREE TO PAY THE BUYER'S PREMIUM AND ANY OTHER CHARGES MENTIONED IN THE NOTICE TO BIDDERS. THIS AFFECTS THE BIDDERS LEGAL RIGHTS.

If you have any complaints or questions about the Conditions of Sale, please contact your nearest customer services team.

Buyers' Premium and Charges

For all Sales categories excluding Wine, Coins & Medals and Motor Cars and Motorcycles:

Buyer's Premium Rates
25% on the first £50,000 of the Hammer Price
20% from £50,001 to £1,000,000 the Hammer Price
12% from £1,000,001 of the Hammer Price

VAT at the current rate of 20% will be added to the Buyer's Premium and charges excluding Artists Resale Right.

Payment Notices

Payment in advance: by cash, check with banker's card, credit card, bank draft or traveler's cheque.

Payment at collection: by credit or debit card.

Credit card charges: a surcharge of 2% is applicable when using Mastercard, Visa and overseas debit cards.

Shipping Notices

For information and estimates on domestic and international shipping as well as export licenses please contact Bonhams Shipping Department.

Contacts
  1. Lionel Willis
    Specialist - Scientific Instruments
    Bonhams
    Work
    Montpelier Street
    London, United Kingdom SW7 1HH
    Work +44 20 7393 3804
    FaxFax: +44 20 7393 3873
Similar items
Irving Penn (American, born 1917); Woman in Moroccan Palace (Lisa Fonssagrives-Penn), Marrakech; A George II carved mahogany and polychrome scagliola table, the top attributable to Petrus Antonius De Paulinus the base in the manner of Benjamin Goodison A George III sabicu, padouk and gilt-brass mounted serpentine commode attributed to John Cobb Arnold, London - Month duration mahogany longcase regulator A large George III carved giltwood picture frame in the manner of Thomas Chippendale Margaret Sarah Carpenter (British, 1793-1872) Portrait of Harriet, Countess Howe