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CHAP. been given four years before, but which had appeared fo XLIV. unusual, that they had voted it fhould never afterwards be regarded as a precedent. 1587.

THE Commons, this feffion, ventured to engage in two controverfies about forms with the houfe of peers; a prelude to thofe encroachments, which, as they affumed more courage, they afterwards made upon the preroga tives of the crown. They complained, that the lords failed in civility to them, by receiving their meffages fitting with their hats on; and that the keeper returned an anfwer in the fame negligent pofture. But the upper houfe proved, to their full fatisfaction, that they were not entitled, by cuftom, and the ufage of parliament, to any more refpe&t Y. Some amendments had been made by the lords, to a bill fent up by the commons; and these amendments were written on parchment, and returned with the bill to the commons. The lower house took umbrage at the novelty: They pretended, that these amendments ought to have been written on paper, not on parchment; and they complained of this innovation to the peers. The peers replied, that they expected not fuch a frivolous objection from the gravity of the house; and that it was not material, whether the amendments were written on parchment or on paper, nor whether the paper was white, black, or brown. The commons were offended with this reply, which feemed to contain a mockery of them; and they complained of it, though without obtaining any fatisfaction 2.

AN application was made, by way of petition to the queen, from the lower houfe, against monopolies; an abule which had rifen to an enormous height: and they received a gracious, though a general anfwer; for which they returned their thankful acknowledgments A. But not to give them too much encouragement in fuch applications, he told them, in the fpeech which the delivered at their diffolution, "That with regard to thefe patents, "the hoped, that her dutiful and loving fubjects would "not take away her prerogative, which is the chief "flower in her garden, and the principal and head pearl "in her crown and diadem; but that they would rather "leave these matters to her disposal B.: The commons


Y D'Ewes, p. 539, 540, 580, 585. Towfennd, p. 93, 94, 95. 2D'Ewes, p. 576, 577. A Ibid. p. 570, 573, Ibid. p. 547.

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alfo took notice, this feffion, of fome tranfactions in the CHAP.
court of high commiffion; but not till they had previ- XLIV.
oufly obtained permiffion from her majefty to that pur-
pose C.


ELIZABETH had reafon to foresee, that parliamentary
fupplies would now become more neceffary to her than
、ever; and that the chief burthen of the war with Spain
would thenceforth lie on England., Henry had received
an overture for peace with Philip; but before he would
proceed to a negociation, he gave intelligence of it to his
allies, the queen and the ftates; that, if poffible, a gene-
ral pacification might be made by common confent and
These two powers fent ambaffadors to
France, in order to remonftrate against peace; the queen,
fir Robert Cecil, and Henry Herbert; the States, Justin
Naffau, and John Barnevelt. Henry faid to thefe minif-
ters, that his most early education had been amidst war
and danger, and he had paffed the whole course of his
life either in arms of in military preparations: That after
the proofs, which he had given of his alacrity in the
field, no one could doubt, but he would willingly, for his
part, have continued in a courfe of life, to which he was
now habituated, till the common enemy was reduced to
fuch a condition as no longer to give umbrage either to
him or to his allies: That no private interests of his own,
not even those of his people, nothing but the most inevi-
table neceffity, could ever induce him to think of a sepa-
rate peace with Philip, or make him embrace measures
not entirely conformable to the wishes of all his confede-
rales: That his kingdom, torn with the convulfions and
civil wars of near half a century, required fome interval
of repofe, ere it could reach a condition, in which it
might fuftain itfelf, much more fupport its allies: That
after the minds of his fubjects were compofed to tranquil-
lity and accustomed to obedience, after his finances were
brought into order, and after agriculture and the arts
were restored, France, instead of being a burthen, as at
prefent, to her confederates, would be able to lend them
effectual fuccour, and amply to repay them all the affift-
ance, which he had received during her calamities:
And that, if the ambition of Spain would at present grant
them fuch terms as they fhould think reafonable, he
hoped, that, in a little time, he should attain fuch a fitu-


© Ibid. p. 557, 558.

CHAP. ation as would enable him to mediate more effectually, XLIV. and with more decifive authority, in their behalf.

THE ambaffadors were fenfible, that these reasons were 1598. not feigned; and they therefore remonftrated with the lefs yehemence against the meafures, which, they faw, Henry was determined to purfue. The States knew, that that monarch was interested never to permit their final ruin; and having received private affurances, that he would ftill, notwithstanding the peace, give them affiftance both of men and money, they were well pleased to remain on terms of amity with him. His greatest concern was to give fatisfaction to Elizabeth for this breach of treaty. He had a cordial esteem for that princefs, a fympathy of manners and a gratitude for the extraordinary favours, which he had received from her, during his greatest difficulties: And he ufed every expedient to apologize and atone for that measure, which neceffity extorted from him. But as Spain refused to treat with the Dutch as a free ftate, and Elizabeth would not negociate Peace of without her ally, Henry found himself obliged to conYervins. clude, at Vervins, a feparate peace, by which he recovered poffeffion of all the places feized by Spain during the course of the civil wars, and procured himself leifure to attend to the domeftic fettlement of his kingdom. His capacity for the arts of peace was not inferior to his military talents; and, in a little time, by his frugality, order, and wife government, he raised France, from the defolation and mifery, in which he was involved, to a more flourishing condition than fhe had ever before enjoyed.


THE queen knew, that he could also, whenever she pleafed, finish the war on equitable terms; and that Phiip, having no claims upon her, would be glad to free himfelf from an enemy, who had foiled him in every conteft, and who had it ftill fo much in her power to make him feel the weight of her arms. Some of her wifeft counsellors, particularly the treasurer, advised her to embrace pacific meafures; and fet before her the advantages of tranquillity, fecurity, and frugality, as more confiderable than any fuccefs, which could attend the greatest victories. But that high-fpirited princefs, though at first averfe to war, feemed now to have attained fuch an afcendant over the enemy, that he was unwilling to ftop the courfe of her profperous fortune.

She confidered

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dered, that her fituation and her paft victories had given CHA P.
her entire fecurity against any dangerous invafion; and XLIV.
the war must thenceforth be conducted by fudden enter-
prizes and naval expeditions, in which the poffeffed an
undoubted fuperiority: That the weak condition of Phi-
lip in the Indies opened to her the view of the most de-
firable advantages; and the yearly return of his treasure
by fea afforded a continual profpe&t of important, though
more temporary, fucceffes: That, after his peace with
France, if the alfo fhould confent to an accommodation,
he would be able to turn all his force against the revolted
provinces of the Netherlands, which, though they had
furprizingly increafed their power by commerce and good
government, were still unable, if not fupported by their
confederates, to maintain war against fo potent a monarch:
And that as her defence of that commonwealth was the
original ground of the quarrel, it was unfafe, as well as
difhonourable, to abandon their caufe, till fhe had
placed them in a state of greater fecurity.

THESE reafons were frequently inculcated on her by
the earl of Effex, whofe paffion for glory, as well as his
military talents, made him carneftly defire the continu-
ance of that war, from which he expected to reap fo
much advantage and diftinction. The rivalfhip between
this nobleman and lord Burleigh made each of them infift
the more strenuously on his own counfel; but as Effex's The earlof
perfon was agreeable to the queen, as well as his advice Essex.
conformable to her inclinations, the favourite feemed
daily to acquire an afcendant over the minifler. Had
he been endowed with caution and felf-command, equal
to his fhining qualities, he would have fo rivetted himself
in the queen's confidence, that none of his enemies had
ever been able to impeach his credit: But his lofty spirit
could ill fubmit to that implicit deference, which her
temper required, and which fhe had ever been accustomed
to receive from all her fubjects. Being once engaged in
a difpute with her about the choice of a governor for
Ireland, he was fo heated in the argument, that he en-
tirely forgot the rules both of duty and civility; and turned
his back upon her in a contemptuous manner. Her anger,
naturally prompt and violent, rofe at this provocation;
and the instantly gave him a box on the ear; adding a
paffionate expreffion, fuited to his impertinence. Instead
of recollecting himfelf, and making the fubmiffions due


CHAP. to her fex and flation, he clapped his hand to his fword, XLIV. and fwore he would not bear fuch ufage, were it from Henry the eighth himself; and, in a great paffion, he im1598. mediately withdrew from court. Egerton, the chancellor, who loved Effex, exhorted him to repair his indifcretion by proper acknowledgments; and entreated him not to give that triumph to his enemies, that affli&ion to his friends, which must enfue from his fupporting a conteft with his fovereign, and deferting the fervice of his country: But Effex was deeply ftung with the difhonour, which he had received; and feemed to think, that an infult, which might be pardoned in a woman, was become a mortal affront when it came from his fovereign. "If the "vileft of all indignities," faid he, " is done me, does religion enforce me to fue for pardon? Doth God require it? Is it impiety not to do it? Why? Cannot "princes err? Cannot fubjects receive wrong? Is an

earthly power infinite? Pardon me, my lord, I can "never fubfcribe to these principles. Let Solomon's "fool laugh when he is ftricken; let those that mean to "make their profit of princes, fhew no fenfe of princes' "injuries: Let them acknowledge an infinite absoluteness "" on earth, that do not believe an abfolute infiniteness in "Heaven." (Alluding, probably, to the character and conduct of Sir Walter Raleigh, who lay under the reproach of impiety.) "As for me," continued he, "I "have received wrong, I feel it: My caufe is good, I "know it; and whatsoever happens, all the powers on "earth can never exert more ftrength and conftancy in "oppreffing, than I car fhew in fuffering every thing "that can or fhall be impofed upon me. Your lordship,

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in the beginning of your letter, makes me a player, and yourself a looker on: And me a player of my own game, fo you may fee more than I: But give me leave to tell you, that fince you do but fee, and I do suffer, "I muft of necefity feel more than you."


THIS fpirited letter was fhewn by Effex to his friends; and they were fo imprudent as to difperfe copies of it: Yet notwithstanding that additional provocation, the queen's partiality was fo prevalent, that the reinstated him in his former favour; and her kindnefs to him appearedrather to have acquired new force from this fhort interval of anger and refentment. The death of Burleigh, his an


D See note at the end of the volume.


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