Lot 127 - Elizabeth I Signed Document
A document signed by Elizabeth I and dated 1563 stating the terms of a loan that Elizabeth is taking out through her financier Sir Thomas Gresham
Accompanying the document is a rare example of the Royal Great Seal, also known as The Great Seal of the Realm.
The Royal Great Seal was used to symbolise the Sovereign's approval of important state documents. This example is the first great seal 1558-1586, prior to the seal engraved by Nicholas Hilliard.
The wax seal depicts an image of Elizabeth I (1533-1603) on horseback. The reverse shows the Queen seated on her throne.
The document is signed on the reverse by the Privy Council; Councilor Robert Dudley (1532-1588), Lord Keeper of the Great Seal Sir William Cecil (1520-1598), Sir Nicholas Bacon (1510-1579), Lord Chamberlain William Howard of Effingham (1510-1573), and Member of Parliament and Governor of Portsmouth, Sir Francis Knollys (1514-1596).
The vellum document measures 15½" x 19½" the overall frame 21" x 25". It has been professionally silked and restored at vellum cuts, one passing through the "z" of the bold signature of the Queen.
It is very rare to find a seal like this one in such good condition. An exceptionally rare historical document.
Sir Thomas Gresham was a merchant and financier who worked for King Edward VI of England and for Edward's half-sisters, Queens Mary I and Elizabeth I. He used part of his wealth to build the Royal Exchange in the City of London.
Queen Elizabeth also found Gresham useful in a great variety of other ways, including acting as jailer to Lady Mary Grey (sister of Lady Jane Grey), who, as a punishment for marrying Thomas Keyes the sergeant porter, remained a prisoner in his house from June 1569 to the end of 1572.
Robert Dudley was Master of the Queen's Horse and a Privy Councilor. It is believed by most historians that Dudley and the Queen were in love and there was no doubt that he was her favourite.
End Date: 2012-05-24 19:30:00