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the fortune to which he was exposed. The obstinacy and violence of the king's temper may alleviate much of the blame which some of his favourite's measures have undergone; and when we consider, that the subsequent part of Henry's reign was much more criminal than that which had been directed by Wolsey's counsels, we shall be inclined to suspect those historians of partiality, who have endeavoured to load the memory of this minister with such violent reproaches. Henry much regretted his death, when informed of it; and always spoke favourably of his memory: a proof that humour more than reason, or any discovery of treachery, had occasioned the last persecutions against him. Hume.


QUEEN Mary determined to bring Cranmer, whom she had long detained in prison, to punishment; and in order more fully to satiate her vengeance, she resolved to punish him for heresy, rather than for treason. He was cited by the Pope to stand his trial at Rome; and though he was known to be kept in close custody at Oxford, he was, upon his not appearing, condemned as contumacious. Bonner, bishop of London, and Thirleby, bishop of Ely, were sent to degrade him; and the former executed the melancholy ceremony, with all the joy and exultation which suited his savage nature. The implacable spirit of the queen, not satisfied with the future misery of Cranmer, which she believed inevitable, and with the execution of that

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dreadful sentence to which he was condemned, prompted her also to seek the ruin of his honour, and the infamy of his name. Persons were employed to attack him, not in the way of disputation, against which he was sufficiently armed; but by flattery, insinuation, and address; by representing the dignities to which his character still entitled him, if he would merit them by a recantation; by giving him hopes of long enjoying those powerful friends, whom his beneficent disposition had attached to him, during the course of his prosperity. Overcome by the fond love of life; terrified by the prospect of those tortures which awaited him; he allowed, in an unguarded hour, the sentiments of nature to prevail over his resolution, and agreed to subscribe the doctrines of the papal supremacy, and of the real presence. The court, equally perfidious and cruel, was determined that this recantation should avail him nothing; and sent orders that he should be required to acknowledge his errours in church before the whole people; and that he should thence be immediately carried to execution.

Cranmer, whether he had received a secret intimation of their design, or had repented of his weakness, surprised the audience by a contrary declaration. He said, that he was well apprised of the obedience which he owed to his sovereign and the laws; but that this duty extended no further than to submit patiently to their commands; and to bear, without resistance, whatever hardships they should impose upon him: that a supe1ior duty, the duty which he owed to his Maker, obliged him to speak truth on all occasions; and

not to relinquish, by a base denial, the holy doctrince which the Supreme Being had revealed to mankind that there was one miscarriage in his life, of which, above all others, he severely repented; the insincere declaration of faith to which he had the weakness to consent, and which the fear of death alone had extorted from him; that he took this opportunity of atoning for his errour, by a sincere and open recantation; and was willing to seal, with his blood, that doctrine which he firmly believed to be communicated from heaven: and that, as his hand had erred, by betraying his heart, it should first be punished, by a severe but just doom, and should first pay the forfeit of its offences.

He was then led to the stake, amidst the insults of his enemies; and having now summoned up all the force of his mind, he bore their scorn, as well as the torture of his punishment, with singular fortitude. He stretched out his hand, and, without betraying, either by his countenance or motions, the least sign of weakness, or even of feeling, he held it in the flames till it was entirely consumed. His thoughts seemed wholly occupied with reflections on his former fault, and he called aloud several times, This hand has offended.' Satisfied with that atonement, he theu discovered a serenity in his countenance; and when the fire attacked his body, he seemed to be quite insensible of his outward sufferings, and, by the force of hope and resolution, to have collected his mind, altogether within itself, and to repel the fury of the flames. He was undoubtedly a man of merit;

possessed of learning and capacity, and adorned with candour, sincerity, and beneficence, and all those virtues which were fitted to render him useful and amiable in society.



ELIZABETH being now become the public and avowed object of Mary's aversion, was openly treated with much disrespect and insult. The princess therefore thought it most prudent to leave the court: and before the beginning of 1554 retired to her house at Ashridge in Hertfordshire.

In the mean time sir Thomas Wyat's rebellion broke out, in opposition to the queen's match with Philip of Spain. It was immediately pretended, that the princess Elizabeth, together with lord Courteney, was privately concerned in this dangerous conspiracy, and that she had held a correspondence with the traitor Wyat. Accordingly sir Edward Hastings, afterwards lord Loughborough, sir Thomas Cornwallis, and sir Richard Southwell, attended by a troop of horse, were ordered to bring her to the court. They found the princess sick, and even confined to her bed, at Ashridge. Notwithstanding, under pretence of the strictness of their commission, they compelled her to rise: and, still continuing very weak and indisposed, she proceeded in the queen's litter by slow journeys to London. At the court they kept her confined

and without company, for a fortnight: after which, bishop Gardiner, who well knew her predominant disposition to cabal and intrigue, with nineteen others of the council, attended to examine her concerning the rebellion of which she was accused. She positively denied the accusation. However, they informed her, it was the queen's resolution she should be committed to the Tower, till further inquiries should be made. Her oaths, and her repeated protestations of innocence, were all ineffectual. She was conveyed to the Tower, "and ignominiously conducted through the Traitor's gate. No stranger, or visitor, was admitted into her presence.

After a close imprisonment of some days, by the generous intercession of lord Chandois, lieutenant of the Tower, it was granted that she might sometimes walk in the queen's lodgings, in the presence of the constable, the lieutenant, and three of the queen's ladies; yet on condition that the windows should be shut. She then was indulged with walking in a little garden, for the sake of fresh air: but all the shutters which looked towards the garden were ordered to be kept close.

Such were their jealousies, that a little boy of four years old, who had been accustomed every day to bring her flowers, was severely threatened if he came any more, and the child's father was summoned and rebuked by the constable. Lord Chandois being observed to treat the princess with too much respect, he was not any longer entrusted with the charge of her; and she was committed to the custody of sir Henry Bedingfield, of Oxburgh, in Norfolk, a person whom she had

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