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during which time the queen bore three children, of whom two died in infancy, and the third Mary, succeeded to the throne of England. At this time the king pretended to have misgivings regarding the legality of his marriage with his brother's widow, and secret conferences were held with Wolsey and others of his court who were slaves of his will, with the view of bringing about a divorce. But cleverly as the true cause of the royal inquietude was at first concealed, it was not long before it became apparent that his heart was estranged from his now aged and ailing queen, by a romantic passion, which he had determined, at the sacrifice of every feeling of honour and humanity, to gratify. Anne Boleyn, the daughter of Sir Thomas Boleyn,one of Catherine's maids of honour, was soon discovered to be the object of the king's adoration. This young and beautiful second queen, whose usurpation of her husband's heart had hurried the divorced Catherine to the grave, lived but two years to enjoy her dearly bought dignity ere she was doomed to the block for crimes of which there is strong evidence to believe her innocent. Her daughter Elizabeth lived to be queen regnant of England by the right of succession. The next unfortunate third queen consort was Jane Seymour, daughter of Sir John Seymour, also a maid of honour, and a young lady of singular beauty and merit. Henry married her on the day after the execution of Anne Boleyn. This queen brought him a son, afterwards Edward VI. ; she died two days after her confinement, and left Henry to make a new choice. Having seen a flattering picture of Anne of Cleves, the royal widower determined to espouse that princess. Anne was sent over to England, but to his great disappointment Henry found she was utterly destitute of grace and beauty, and to heighten his disgust she could speak nothing but Dutch, a language of which he was entirely ignorant; he, however, was too gallant a knight to refuse her his hand, she therefore became his fourth queen; and he continued, notwithstanding his unconquerable aversion to her, to treat her with great kindness until he obtained a divorce; this was not long in being accomplished, and he married his fifth wife, Catherine Howard, niece of the Duke of Norfolk. In this marriage he considered himself perfectly blessed; the agreeable person and disposition of Catherine had entirely captivated his affections, and in the height of his transport he publicly in his chapel returned solemn thanks to heaven for the unspeakable felicity the conjugal state afforded him. His bliss was soon fated to terminate, and in the bitter disappointment he experienced in Catherine, Heaven seemed to revenge upon him the cruelty with which he had sacrificed his former wives - her transition from the throne to the scaffold occupied but eighteen months. Catherine Parr, the widow of Lord Latimer, was Henry's sixth and last queen, and she, like Anne Boleyn and Catherine Howard, would also have been brought to the block on a point of religious controversy, had not her ready wit appeased the king's anger, by pretending her opposition to his tenets was but to divert his attention from the

pain he was suffering from a wound in his leg. This last and comparatively fortunate queen survived the royal tyrant, whose death, in the fourth year of their marriage, released her from great fears and troubles, her committal to the Tower on the charge of high treason being constantly hanging over her; and the natural ferocity of the king being increased by the tortures of his wound, it required all her patience and fortitude to minister to his sufferings, and endure the savage outbursts of his rage.

Kings of England, p. 92.

ANNE BOLEYN. On the 19th of May, 1534, the queen (Anne Boleyn) was brought in marvellous splendour of state and rejoicing, by the mayor and aldermen, in a gilded barge, adorned with banners and devices, surrounded with wonderous pageants of the Bachelor's and City Companies, in their boats and barges of ceremony, from Greenwich, along the Thames, through a fleet of ships and wherries, which, together with the banks on either side, were crowded with spectators, all in their holiday clothes, anxious to behold and do honour to the young and beautiful new object of their monarch's adoration, to the Tower of London, where she was welcomed by the king, who kissed her, and led her with great show of joy and affection, amid noises of sweet music and peals of great guns, into the royal apartments, there to remain until the happy morning of the next day, which was appointed for her solemn coronation.

On the 1st May, 1536, the traitor's gate opened to receive 3 royal prisoner, and eighteen days afterwards, on the 19th of May, the headless body of the queen, who but two years before had been the occasion of so much rejoicing and happiness, was hastily thrown into a chest made to contain arrows, and buried without form or ceremony in the Tower chapel.

Such was the short-lived triumph and melancholy end of the beauteous Anne Boleyn. That Henry had grown tired of her there is little doubt, and that she was condemned on very questionable evidence by the influence of the Duke of Suffolk, who, by “ wholly applying himself to the king's humour” with regard to Jane Seymour, thought to secure for himself the royal favour, is also a fact most generally acknowledged. The marriage of Henry with the new idol of his affection on the morning after the axe had dissolved his last contract, speaks volumes to confirm the popular belief that Anne Boleyn was the victim of a foul conspiracy, and that her only crime was having outlived her husband's liking. *

Kings of England, p. 120.

* Henry was married to Anne Boleyn on the 25th January, 1533, in a garret, at the western end of the palace at Whitehall. She is described by a contemporary chronicler as “a fair young creature, so exquisitely moulded in form and feature, and gifted with wit so sparkling and pleasant, she enslaved alike the cyes and understanding of all whom she encountered.” And such is the interest with which her memory is still invested, that numbers daily visit her chamber at Hever Castle


CARDINAL WOLSEY. Thomas Wolsey was born at Ipswich, in March, 1471. There is some doubt among his biographers whether his father was butcher or grazier, or both. However this may be, the son received a learned education, and being endowed with an excellent capacity, he was admitted into the Marquis of Dorsct's family as tutor to his children. Having obtained the confidence of his patron, he was presented by that nobleman to the rectory of Lymington, in Somersetshire, Oct. 10, 1500. Being of a gay and sociable disposition, he accompanied some of his neighbours to a fair in the neighbourhood, where creating a disturbance, he was put in the stocks by Sir Amyas Powlet, a justice of the peace. This seems not to have been any obstacle to his advancement. By the recommendation of Sir John Naport, he was made one of the King's chaplains. While in this situation heinsinuated himself into the favour of Fox, Bishop of Winchester, who recommended him to Henry VII., as a fit person to negotiate a marriage betwixt that monarch and the Duchess of Savoy. He acquitted himself so well in this embassy, that on his return he was made Dean Lincoln, and Prebendary of Walton Brinhold.

Wolsey was in these circumstances when Henry VIII. became king. He soon insinuated himself into the confidence of that inonarch. He was admitted to Henry's parties of pleasure, he took the lead in every jovial conversation, and promoted all that frolic and fun which he found agreeable to the age and inclination of the king. He was then forty years of age, but neither that nor his character of a clergyman appears to have been any check upon his gaiety; and he laughed, danced, sung and rallied, and laid aside all the severity appertaining to his station. His power over the king became almost absolute. Henry made him a member of his council, and abandoned to him the entire direction of the administration. He was promoted to the archiepiscopal see of York, which he was allowed to hold in conjunction with the rich bishoprics of Winchester and Durham. He held in commendam the abbey of St. Albans, and many other church preferments. In short, the wealth and honours he possessed were almost without


(near Edenbridge, in Kent), and eagerly listen to the romantic traditions which point out the hill where Henry used to sound his bugle when he came to visit her, in their happy days of courtship, from his palace at Eltham; and the exact spot in the garden where, at the turn of a walk, she suddenly came upon the king, who was so struck with her wonderous beauty, which the confusion wrought by so unexpected a meeting greatly augmented, that from that moment he was inspired with the fatal passion which raised its unfortunate object to the throne but to transJate her to the block. The axe with which the "little neck” of the cruelly-sacrificed queen was severed is still preserved in the Tower, and shares with her grave in the chapel the melancholy interest which for more than three hundred years has buen associated with her name.

It is said that during the night which followed her execution, her body was secretly removed from its grave before the altar in the Tower chapel, and buried in the church of Salle, in Norfolk, where a black marble slab is shown as the cover ing of her remains.

bounds. His pride and ostentation kept pace with his prosperity. His train consisted of 800 servants, of whom many were knights and gentlemen. Some of the nobility put their children into his family, as a place of education, and to procure his favour allowed them to bear offices as his servants. Whoever was distinguished by any art or science paid court to the cardinal; and none paid court in vain. Literature found in him a liberal patron, and he gave encouragement to every branch of erudition. Not content with this munificence, which gained him the approbation of the wise, he strove to dazzle the eyes of the populace by the splendour of his equipage and furniture, the costly embroidery of his liveries, and the lustre of his apparel. He was the first ecclesiastic in England that wore silk and gold, not only on his habit, but also on his saddles and the trappings of his horses. He caused his cardinal's hat to be borne aloft by a person of rank : and when he came to the king's chapel would permit it to be laid on no place but the altar. A priest, the tallest and comeliest he could find, carried before him a pillar of silver, on whose top was placed a cross. Not satisfied with this parade, he provided another priest of equal stature and beauty, who marched along bearing the cross of York even in the diocese of Canterbury, contrary to ancient rule and agreement between the prelates of these rival sees.

His pride and ostentation were still further increased on being appointed the pope's legate in England. Having obtained this new dignity, he made a new display of state and parade. On solemn feast days he was not content with saying mass after the manner of the pope himself: not only had he bishops and abbots to serve him, he even engaged the first nobility to give him water and the towel. Warham the primate having written him a letter, in which he subscribed himself your loving brother, Wolsey complained of his presumption in thus challenging an equality with him. When Warham was told what offence he had given, he said,— Know ye not that this man is drunk with too much prosperity ?

Having thus attained the summit of greatness, he was doomed to experience a terrible reverse of fortune. Various causes have been assigned for his downfall, but no doubt the principal were the capricious, tyrannical and impetuous character of Henry VIII., joined to Wolsey's own indiscreet conduct, which had excited general envy and disgust. The king first deprived him of the great seal. He was next ordered to depart from York-place, a palace he had built in London. This was seized by Henry, and became afterwards the residence of the King of England, by the title of Whitehall. All his furniture and plate were seized. Their riches and splendour befitted rather a roy:1 than a private fortune. The walls of his palace were covered with cloth of gold, or cloth of silver. He had a cupboard of plate of massy gold, and there were found a thousand pieces of fine holland belonging to him. The cardinal himself was ordered to retire near Asher, a seat he possessed near Hampton Court. The world which had paid him such abject court now entirely deserted him. Wolsey

himself was extremely dejected with this fata, reverse of fortune. The smallest appearance of his return to favour threw him into transports of joy unbecoming a man. At one time the king seemed willing to intermit the blows which overwhelmed him. But the enemies of the cardinal were unceasing in their efforts to prejudice the king against his favourite. After remaining some time at Asher, he was allowed to remove to his palace at Richmond. Here the courtiers dreading his vicinity to the king, procured an order for him to remove to Cawood, in Yorkshire, where his affability and hospitality, rendered him extremely popular in the neighbourhood. But he was not allowed to remain long unmolested in this retreat. The Earl of Northumberland received orders to arrest him for high treason, and conduct him to London in order to his trial. The cardinal, partly from the fatigues of the journey, partly from the agitations of his anxious mind, was seized with a distemper, which enabled him, with some difficulty, to reach Leicester Abbey. When the abbot and monks advanced to meet him, with much respect and reverence, Shakspeare makes him address them

" O father abbot! An old man broken with the storms of state Is come to lay his weary bones among ye:

Give him a little earth for charity.” He immediately took to his bed, whence he never rose more. A little before he expired, he said to the king's officers, who stood near his bed: “If I had served God half so diligently as I have served the king, he would not have given me over in my grey hairs.

Thus died the famous Cardinal Wolsey. His greatest crime was his ambition, and it was to indulge this darling passion, and a love of magnificence, that he endeavoured to render his unbounded influence over the king alone subservient. His memory cannot be charged with flagrant offences. He rose into favour without any extraordinary virtues, and he fell without having committed any extraordinary crime. Hume. Rapin. Biographia. Britannica.

THE FIELD OF THE CLOTH OF GOLD. The joyous meeting of the two great monarchs of England and France, Henry VIII. and Francis I., in the renowned valley of Ardres, was an event which made all Europe ring with the history of its wonders. Henry, with his queen and whole court, passed the sea from Dover to Calais, and thence proceeded to Guisnes, a small town near the frontiers. Francis, attended in like manner, came to Ardres, a few miles distant, and the two monarchs met for the first time', on horseback, in the fieius, at a place situated between these two towns, but still within the English pale ; for Francis agreed to pay this compliment tu Henry, in consideration of that prince's passing the sea, that he might be present at the interview. Wolsey, to whom both kings had en.

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