De Vere Hogan Letter 1578

Edward de Vere, Earl of Oxford to Commissioners 
for voyage to Meta Incognita,
21 May 1578:

To my very loving friends Mr [Michael] Lok, Mr [Edmund] Hogan, & others the Commissioners for the  voyage to Meta incognita [‘Boundary Unknown’ – re Northwest Passage].
After my very hearty commendations, understanding of the wise proceeding & orderly dealing for the continuing of the voyage for the discovery of Cathay by the north-west which this bearer, my friend Mr Frobisher, hath already very honourably attempted, and is now eftsoons to be employed for the better achieving thereof, and the rather induced as well for the great liking her Majesty hath to have the same passage discovered as also for the special good favour I bear to Mr Frobisher, to offer unto you to be an adventurer therein for the sum of one thousand pounds or more, if you like to admit thereof, which sum or sums, upon your certificate of admittance, I will enter into bond shall be paid for that use unto you upon Michaelmas Day next coming.
Requesting your answers therein, I bid you heartily farewell from the court, the 21 of May, 1578.
Your loving friend,
Edward Oxenford

The National Archives SP 12/149/42(15) f.108v 1 – Nina Green

Oxford invested heavily in Martin Frobisher’s voyages to the CanadianArctic, known at the time as Meta Incognita
In the above letter Vere is offering to invest £1000 in Frobisher’s third voyage, to be secured by a bond due on 29 September 1578.
A useful source of information on the three Frobisher voyages is Inuit and Englishmen; The Nunavut Voyages of Martin Frobisher at
Also see Voyages Of Martin Frobisher, In Search Of A Passage To Cathay  by George Best 1578 availabe at the Internet Archive

…the final list of stockholders for the voyage numbered eight
eminent courtiers (Burghley, Walsingham, Leicester, Warwick,
Sussex, Philip Sidney, Thomas Randolph and Edmund Hogan)…

p. 169 Trade, Plunder and Settlement: Maritime Enterprise and the
Genesis of the British Empire, 1480-1630
Kenneth R. Andrews
[Cambridge Paperback Library]


He is now openly slandered by Capt. Frobisher,
thus to be, a false accountant to the Company,
a cozener of my Lord of Oxford*,
no venturer at all in the voyages,
a bankrupt knave

‘East Indies: November 1578’, Calendar of State Papers Colonial, East Indies, China and Japan,
Volume 2: 1513-1616 (1864), pp. 43-44.
British History Online

*this line is invariably left out by Stratfordian Historians; a cozener is a conartist – Lok conned Edward de Vere into taking his £2000 share thus bringing up Vere’s total exposure to £3000.
cf. Merchant of Venice’ Shylok 3000 ducats.


Charlton Ogburn considered this 1578 letter to be one of two (the other being his letter in French at just age 13) most significant surviving de Vere letters:



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