The Stoner Letters and Papers

In the always commendable spirit of making history more accessible, here’s a letter from June 21, 1483, in two versions: The Stonor Letters and Papers and The Stoner Letters and Papers.

As reproduced by Charles Kingsford in The Stonor Letters and Papers:


Worschipfull Sir, I commend me to you, and for tydynges I hold you happy that ye ar oute of the prese, for with huse is myche trobull, and every manne dowtes other. As on Fryday last was the lord Chamberleyn hedded sone apone noon. On Monday last was at Westm. gret plenty of harnest men : ther was the dylyveraunce of the Dewke of Yorke to my lord Cardenale, my lord Chaunceler, and other many lordes Temporale : and with hym mette my lord of Bukyngham in the myddes of the hall of Westm. : my lord protectour recevynge hyme at the Starre Chamber Dore with many lovynge wordys : and so departed with my lord Cardenale to the toure, wher he is, blessid be Jhesus, mery. . . . The lord Arsbyschop of Yorke, the Byshop of Ely ar yit in the toure with Master Olyver Kynge. . . . They ar not lyke to come oute off ward ytt. . . . Mastres Chore is in prisone : what schall happyne hyr I knowe nott. I pray you pardone me of mor wrytyng, I ame so seke that I may not wel holde my penne. And Jhesu preserve you.

From The Stoner Letters and Papers:

Bro. Glad you’re back at your crib, ’cause there is some weird sh*t going down here. Last Friday they offed the chamberlain dude. Then on Monday all of these army types showed up at Westminster, and then they like handed over the queen’s younger kid to all of these head honchos. The protector guy hooked up with him at the Star Chamber and told him, like, chill out, little dude, just keep it real, and the kid was cool with that. A couple of religious dudes are in the slammer with Oliver King. Looks like they’re f*cked. That Shore chick is locked up too; don’t know what’s going to go down with her. Sorry about the writing, man, I got really wasted last night. Later.

7 thoughts on “The Stoner Letters and Papers”

  1. Love it! There should be more of it, might get all those kids who are destroying the language interested in history.

  2. Michele at Reader's Respite

    That's the funniest thing I've read all week….you just made my whole day with this!

  3. Christy K Robinson

    That is EXACTLY what I'm doing for my novel set in 17th-century England and Massachusetts Bay Colony — changing all the dialog to suit stoner dudes, surfers, and Valley girls. Surely it will come off less stick-up-the-butt and more marketable to the hiphop crowd who want to spend every dime they can beg or steal on historical novels.

    Susan, I tremble to think that your spell checker must be smokin'.

  4. Susan Higginbotham

    RS and Michele, thanks!

    Christy, my poor spell checker gave up months ago.

    Hodgepodge, I know what you mean!

    Kathryn, thanks!

  5. Too bad I’m not still teaching undergrads. It would be a great intro to reading the 15th century letter collections.

    Thanks for letting me know about this post.

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