Page:Dictionary of National Biography volume 32.djvu/388

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Lee
Lee
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lord deputy, Sir W. Russell, against a party of Scots and Connaught rebels in O'Madden's country (ib. pp. 490-1). On 1 April he addressed a letter to Burghley on the situation of affairs in Ulster, urging a conciliatory policy in regard to the Earl of Tyrone, who he declared would go to England if he had a safe-conduct direct from the queen (ib. p. 506, and Sir R. Cecil's reply Cal. Carew MSS. iii. 180). In December the deputy reported that Lee had sent in the heads of seventeen traitors (Cal. Carew MSS. iii. 263), and in April 1597 he was created provost-marshal of Connaught (ib. p. 258 ; Cal. of Hants, Eliz. No. 6072). In the following month he commanded the party that killed Feagh MacHugh O'Byrne among the Wicklow mountains (Cal. Carew MSS. iii. 259). Apparently, however, about the time when when Tyrone defeated Bagenal at the battle of the Yellow Ford (August 1598), Lee was again imprisoned in Dublin Castle, this time on suspicion of holding treasonable communication with Tyrone. Lee denied the charge, and attributed his imprisonment to the malice of Thomas Jones (1550 ?-1619) [q. v.], bishop of Meath (Lee, Apology, Addit. MS. 33743). The situation of the kingdom was, however, so desperate that, after a detention of about twenty weeks, he was liberated, and by his own account did good service in revictualling the castle of Maryborough and in prosecuting Phelim MacFeagh O'Byrne and the rebels who invested the Pale. The allusions in his 'Apology' to his service against Tyrone and his relations with Robert, earl of Essex, are obscure, but it would appear that about the time of Sir Conyers Clifford's defeat (August 1599) he consented, at Tyrone's request and with the cognisance of Sir Christopher Blount, to visit Tyrone. He found the earl 'quite changed from his former disposition, and possessed with insolency ana arrogancy' (ib. f. 181) ; and having vainly endeavoured to induce him to submit, left him and cursed the day that ever he had known him. When Essex left Ireland in September 1599, Lee either accompanied him or followed shortly afterwards. During the interval that elapsed before his arrest he wrote his 'Discovery and Recovery of Ireland, with the Author's Apology.' He was arrested on 12 Feb. 1601 on a charge of attempting to procure the release of the Earls of Essex and Southampton by force. At his trial the following day he denied the construction put upon his words by the attorney-general, but spoke boldly in defence of Essex, who it appears had written to commend him to Lord-deputy Mountjoy. He admitted that 'it was ever my fault to be loose and lavish of my tongue,' but 'he had lived in misery and cared not to live, his enemies were so many and so great.' As a favour he begged that his son 'might have no wrong, and that he might have that little that he had got together and should leave behind him.' He was executed next day at Tyburn, dying 'very Christianly' (Cobbett, State Trials, i. 1403-10 ; Camden, Annales; Cal. Carew MSS. iv. 37).

Lee wrote : 1. 'A Brief Declaration of the Government of Ireland. Opening many Corruptions in the same. Discovering the Discontentments of the Irishry, and the Causes moving those expected Troubles, and shewing means how to establish Quietness in that Kingdom honourably, to your Majesty's profit, without any encrease of Charge. This tract was first published by Lodge in 'Desiderata Curiosa Hibernica,' i. 87-150, Dublin, 1772, from a manuscript in Trinity College, Dublin, and was subsequently reprinted in Curry's 'Review of the Civil Wars in Ireland, App. i. 2. 'The Discouerye and Recouerye of Ireland, witli the Author's Apologye.' written in 1599-1600. Several copies of this tract, which has never been printed, are known to be in existence. One is in the possession of Viscount Dillon at Dytchley in Oxfordshire, another in that of Lord Calthorpe, and a third in the British Museum, Additional MS. 33743. Lee professed to be a plain, outspoken soldier, and his writing reflects the character of the man. It is vigorous and often abusive, but there is a substantial substratum of useful matter in it for the historian of Ireland in the latter years of Queen Elizabeth's reign.

[State Papers, Eliz., Ireland, and Domestic; Hamilton's Cal. of Irish State Papers; Brewer's Cal. of Carew MSS.; Morrin's Cal. of Patent Rolls; Cal. of Fiants; Spedding's Letters and Life of Lord Bacon, vol. ii.; Camden's Annals; Cobbett's State Trials; Devereux's Earls of Essex; Hist. MSS. Comm. 2nd Rep. App. pp. 31, 40, and 8th Rep. App. p. 582; Lodge's Desiderata Curiosa Hibernica; Addit. MS. 33743.]

R. D.

LEE, WILLIAM (d. 1610?), inventor of the stocking-frame, a native in all probability of Calverton, Nottinghamshire, where he is said to have been heir to 'a pretty freehold,' was matriculated as a sizar of Christ's College, Cambridge, in May 1579. Subsequently he removed to St. John's College, and proceeded B.A. in 1582-3. It is probable that he commenced M.A. in 1086 (Cooper, Athenæ Cantabr. iii. 38). In 1589 he was either curate or incumbent of Calverton, and invented the stocking-frame there. One of the traditions is that he acquired an aversion to hand-knitting because a young woman to whom he was paying his addresses at or near Calverton seemed,