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TO THE RIGHT HO|norable sir Henrie Sidneie knight, lord deputie generall of Ireland, lord president of Wales, knight of the most noble order of the garter, and one of hir maiesties priuie councell within hir realme of England.

Compare 1577 edition: 1 2 _TAking in hand (right honorable) to gather the particular histories of diuerse countries and nations, to ioine with a cos|mographie, which one Reginald Wolfe late printer to the queenes maiestie meant to publish in our English toong: when I came to consider of the histories of Ireland, I found my self so vnprouided of helps, to set downe anie particular discourse therof, that I was in despaire to enterprise to write anie thing at all concerning that realme, otherwise than incidentlie as fell to purpose to touch the same in the historie of England. At length yet as maister Wolfes vse was, to impart to me all such helps as he might at anie hand procure for my furtherance, in the collections of the other histories, where|with I speciallie dealt; his hap was to light also vpon a copie of two bookes of the Irish histories, compiled by one Edmund Campion, fellow sometime of S. Iohn Baptists college in Oxford, verie well penned certeinlie, but so breefe, as it were to be wished, that occasion had serued him to haue vsed more leasure, and thereby to haue deliuered to vs a larger discourse of the same histories: for as he himselfe confesseth, he had not past ten weekes space to gather his matter: a verie short time doubtlesse for such a peece of worke. But how breefe so euer I found him, at the persuasion of maister Wolfe, vpon the hauing of that copie, I resolued to make shift to frame a speciall historie of Ireland, in like maner as I had doone of o|ther regions, following Campions order, and setting downe his owne words, ex|cept in places where I had matter to inlarge that (out of other authors) which he had written in breefe. And this I haue thought good to signifie, the rather for that I esteeme it good dealing in no wise to defraud him of his due deserued praise.

Compare 1577 edition: 1 2 But now after I had continued the historie, and inlarged it out of Giraldus Cam|brensis, Flatsburie, Henrie of Marleburgh, and other, till the yeare 1509, in which that famous prince Henrie the eight began his reigne; some of those that were to bestow the charges of the impression, procured a learned gentleman maister Ri|chard Stanihurst, to continue it from thense forward as he saw occasion, being fur|nished with matter to inlarge the worke, whereof for those latter times I found my selfe vtterlie void, more than that which Campion had deliuered. What I haue EEBO page image 3 doone heerein, your honors discretion shall easilie conceiue. For the imperfection sith it is the first that hath beene set foorth in print, I craue most humblie pardon of your good lordship, beseeching you rather to respect my good will than the per|fectnesse of the worke, which (the wants considered) for the orderlie furnishing thereof, is not to be looked for in the skilfull, much lesse in me the meanest of all, and least able to performe it. Hauing presented the right honourable the earle of Leicester with the historie of Scotland, to whom (as I haue heard) Campion made dedication of his booke, I could not remember me to whome I might more conue|nientlie offer this my trauell in this historie of Ireland, than to your lordship, be|ing hir maiesties lieutenant in that realme. And therefore in most humble wise I ex|hibit the booke to your honour, beseeching the same to beare with my bold at|tempt therein, and to receiue it in good part from him that wished to haue more amplie satisfied your good lordships expectation, if abilitie might haue answered good will. Thus I beseech the Lord to guide your heart in his holie waies, & to fur|nish you with politike prudence and skilfull knowledge to gouerne in your estate and office, so as your dooings may redound to his glorie, the suertie of hir ma|iesties dominion there, your owne aduancement in honour, and conse|quentlie to the sure support and peaceable quietnesse of the true and loiall subiects of that realme.

Your honours most humble to command, RAPHAEL HOLINSHED.

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¶ The authors out of whom this historie of Ireland hath beene gathered.

    Compare 1577 edition: 1
  • Giraldus Cambrensis.
  • Flatsburie.
  • Henricus Marleburgensis.
  • Saxo Grammaticus.
  • Albertus Crantz.
  • Rogerus Houeden.
  • Guilielm. Paruus Nouoburgensis.
  • Polychronicon, siue Ranulfus Higeden.
  • Iohannes Bale.
  • Edmund Campion.
  • Records and rolles diuers.

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