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More about the Loseley Letters database

Letter from Queen Elizabeth to the sheriff of Surrey and the commissioners for the musters including Sir William More, to thank them for their efforts and for those of the officers and men of the trained bands. SHC ref 6729/13/41aThe correspondence of the More, (later More Molyneux), family of Loseley House is one of richest surviving sources for Tudor and Stuart Surrey. This database includes descriptions of the great majority of surviving letters written between c.1506 and 1689, that is from the time of the founder of the family's fortune, Sir Christopher More (d.1549) to the death of Robert More. The most significant portions of the correspondence are those from the time of Sir William More (1520-1600) and his son Sir George More (1553-1632), both of whom held many important local and national offices, but some of the later letters are also of great interest, for example throwing light on the experiences of south-west Surrey during the Civil War.

Detail of Cuckfield House, Sussex, childhood home of Lady Mary More, 1675. (SHC ref LM/1373/2)Alongside successive monarchs, bishops of Winchester and the leading gentry of Surrey (such as Carew, Howard, Slyfield, Browne, Weston, Bray and Stoughton) and neighbouring counties, correspondents include such luminaries of the Tudor state as William Cecil (1520-1598), Lord Burghley, Robert Dudley (1532-1588), Earl of Leicester, Charles Howard (c.1536-1624), Earl of Nottingham, Sir Francis Walsingham (1530-1590), Edward Clinton (d.1585), Earl of Lincoln and Anthony Browne (c.1528-1592), Viscount Montague.

The original letters are held in 13 volumes (ref 6729) and in several series of files of loose letters (ref LMCOR). Because the selection of letters for binding (which took place in the early 19th century) was somewhat arbitrary, letters relating to the same subject are often split between a number of the volumes and some of the files, making the correspondence difficult to follow. This database permits descriptions of the correspondence to be sorted chronologically, by author or recipient, by the office to which it relates, by subject or by place, thus allowing letters which are physically divided to be reunited. Free text searching allows every description to be scanned for an individual word or name.

More pedigree. (SHC Ref LM/1337/2)Users of this database should always bear in mind that the bulk of the surviving Loseley manuscripts are not held in the two correspondence series. Most, including further documents relating to the subjects covered by the letters, is held under the reference LM. Some manuscripts were sold in the last century to the Folger Shakespeare Library in Washington DC. Microfilm copies are held at Surrey History Centre under the reference Z407. All letters described in the database have been transcribed (see Zg/109).

Images:

Letter from Queen Elizabeth to the sheriff of Surrey and the commissioners for the musters including Sir William More, to thank them for their efforts and for those of the officers and men of the trained bands. (SHC ref 6729/13/41a)

Detail of Cuckfield House, Sussex, childhood home of Lady Mary More, 1675. (SHC ref LM/1373/2)

More pedigree. (SHC Ref LM/1337/2)

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