Character of Edward VI. by Burnet

Thus died Edward VI., in the sixteenth year of his age. He was counted the wonder of his time; he was not only learned in the tongues and the liberal sciences, but he knew well the state of his kingdom. He kept a table-book, in which he had written the characters of all the eminent men of the nation: he studied fortification, and understood the mint well. He knew the harbours in all his dominions, with the depth of the water, and way of coming into them. He understood foreign affairs so well, that the ambassadors who were sent into England, published very extraordinary things of him in all the courts of Europe. He had great quickness of apprehension, but being distrustful of his memory, he took notes of everything he heard that was considerable, in Greek characters, that those about him might not understand what he writ, which he afterwards copied out fair in the journal that he kept. His virtues were wonderful; when he was made to believe that his uncle was guilty of conspiring the death of the other councillors, he upon that abandoned him.

Barnaby Fitzpatrick was his favourite; and when he sent him to travel, he writ oft to him to keep good company, to avoid excess and luxury, and to improve himself in those things that might render him capable of employment at his return. He was afterwards made Lord of Upper Ossory, in Ireland, by Queen Elizabeth, and did answer the hopes this excellent King had of him. He was very merciful in his nature, which appeared in his unwillingness to sign the warrant for burning the Maid of Kent. He took great care to have his debts well paid, reckoning that a Prince who breaks his faith and loses his credit, has thrown up that which he can never recover, and made himself liable to perpetual distrust and extreme contempt. He took special care of the petitions that were given him by poor and opprest people. But his great zeal for religion crowned all the rest—it was a true tenderness of conscience, founded on the love of God and his neighbour. These extraordinary qualities, set off with great sweetness and affability, made him universally beloved by his people.