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trusted the regulation of the ceremonial, contrived this circum. stance in order to do honour to his master. The nobility both of France and England here displayed their magnificence with such emulation, as procured to the place of interview the name of the Field of the Cloth of Gold.

Then the Kyng of Englande shewed himselfe some deale forward in bewty and personage, the most goodliest Prince pt. ever reigned over the realme of Englande: his grace was apparelled in a garment of cloth of siluer of Damaske, ribbed with cloth of golde, so thicke as might be, the garment was large, and pliteð verie thicke, and cantled of verye good entaile, of suche shape and making yt. was marucilous to behold. The courser which his grace roade bpo, was trapped in a marueillous vesture of a new deuised fassion, the trapper was of fine golde in bullion, curiously wrought, pounced, and set with antique worke of Romaine figures. Attending on the Kyng's grace of Englande was the maister of his horse, by name Sir Henry Guplford, leading the kyng's spare horse, the which horse was irapped in a mantellet bront and back place, all of fine golde in scifers of deuise with tasselles on cordel pendaunt, the saddell was of the same sute and worke, so was the headstall and raynes. After followed {X henxmen, ryding on coursers of Naples, the same young gentlemen were apparelled in riche cloth of tissue, the coursers in harnesse of maruaylous fassion, sealed in fine golde in bullion, and all the same horse harnesse were set full of trembling spangles that were large and fayre. The Lorde Marques Borset bare the kyng's sworde of estate before tbe kung's grace; the Lorde Cardinali dið his attendance. Then op blewe the trumpettes, sagbutts, clarions, and all other minstrels on both sides, and the kynge's descended downe towarde the bottom of the valey of An= dern, to sight of both the nations on horseback, met and embraced the two kynges each other. Then the two kynges alighted, and after embraced with benyng and courteous maner eche to other, with sweete and goodly wordes of greeting: and after fewe wordes, these two noble kynpes went together into a riche tent of cloth of golde, that there was set on the grounde for such purpose; thus arme in arme went the French Kyng, frannces, the first, of frannce, and Henry the epght, King of Englande, and of frannce together, passing with communication.

Henry here proposed to make some amendments on the articles of their former alliance; and he began to read the treaty, “I Henry, King.These were the first words; and he stopped a moment; he subjoined only the words of England, without adding France, the usual style of the English monarchs. Francis remrzed this delicacy, and exp' essed by a smile his approbation of it. He took an opportunity si on after of paying a compliment to Henrv of a more flattering na ure. That generous prince, full of honour himself, and incapable of distrusting others, was shocked at all the precautions which were observed whenever he had an interview with the English monarch. The number of their guards

and attendants was carefully reckoned on both sides. Every step was scrupulously measured and adjusted, and if the two king's intended to pay a visit to the queens, they departed from their respective quarters at the same instant, which was marked by the firing of a culverin; they passed each other in the middle point between the places, and the moment that Henry entered Ardres, Francis put himself into the hands of the English at Guisnes. In order to break off this tedious ceremonial, which contained so many dishonourable implications, Francis one day took with him two gentlemen and a page, and rode directly into Guisnes. The guards were surprised at the presence of the monarch, who called aloud to them, “ You are all my prisoners ; carry me to your master.” Henry was equally astonished at the appearance of Francis; and taking him in his arms, “My brother,” said he, “you have here played me the most agreeable trick in the world, and have shown me the full confidence I may place in you. I surrender myself your prisoner from this moment.” He took from his neck collar of pearls worth 15,000 angels (about £900 of our present money), and putting it about Francis's neck begged him to wear it for the sake of his prisoner. Francis agreed, but on condition that Henry should wear a bracelet, of which he made him a present, and which was worth double the value of the collar. The king went next day to Ardres, without guards or attendants; and confi. dence being now fully established between the monarchs, they employed the rest of the time equally in tournaments and festivals.

A defiance had been sent by the two kings to each other's courts, and through all the chief cities in Europe, importing that Henry and Francis, with fourteen aids, would be ready in the plains of Picardy to answer all comers, that were gentlemen, at tilt, tour. nament, and barriers. The monarchs, in order to fulfil this challenge, advanced into the field on horseback, Francis surrounded with Henry's guards, and Henry with those of Francis. They were gorgeously apparelled, and were both of them the most comely personages of their age, as well as the most expert in every military exercise. They carried away the prize at all trials in those rough and dangerous pastimes; and several horses and riders were overthrown by their vigour and dexterity. The ladies were the judges in these feats of chivalry, and put an end to the rencounter whenever they judged it expedient. Henry erected a spacious house of wood and canvas, which had been framed in London; and he there feasted the French monarch. He placed a moito on this fabric, under the figure of an English archer embroidered on it “ Cui adhæreo prreest"_" He prevails whom I suvour,' expressing his own situation as holding in his hands the balance of power among the potentates of Išurope. In these entertainments, more than in serious business, did the two kings pass their time till their departure.

Hume, vol. iv. p. 23.

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SUPPRESSION OF THE MONASTERIES. One of the most remarkable acts of Henry's reign was the suppression of all the monasteries throughout the kingdom, and the seizure of their revenues for the use of the crown.

Visitors were sent to inquire into their condition, and in many of them gross irregularities of life and morals were discovered. The pious frauds by which the monks and priors used to beguile the credulity of the people were also detected and exposed. Thus it was found that eleven different religious houses boasted of the possession of the Virgin Mary's girdle, and that eight others had some of her milk to show. The teeth of St. Apollonia, which were said to cure the tooth-ache, were so numerous that they filled a ton when collected. At Reading there was a wooden angel with only one wing, and yet it had flown to England as the bearer of the spearhead that pierced our Saviour's side. The monastery of Hales, in Gloucestershire, had in a vial a portion of our Saviour's blood, to see which pilgrims resorted from all parts; but when the vial was displayed to their view the sacred blood was often not to be

The reason, as they were told, was, that they had not purchased enough of masses, and when they had paid more money the blood became visible. It was found that the vial, which contained the blood of a duck, had one opaque side, which the priest used to turn to the pilgrims till they had given money enough. At Boxley, in Kent, was a crucifix, called the Rood of Grace, which by secret springs and wires was made to move its head, lips, &c., to the great amazement of the ignorant people. These were all brought to St. Paul's, and the impostures there exposed. Some of the lands of the monasteries were sold; but the greater part were given by the king to his rapacious courtiers; and hence at the present day the seats of so many noblemen and gentlemen are called abbeys and priories. Such, for example, are Woburn Abbey and Newstead Abbey. In many cases the magnificent churches and other buildings of the abbeys were stript of their roofs and let go to ruin. Many of these noble ruins, such as Fountain, Tintern and Netley, may still be seen. And they will in some bosoms awake a sigh at the barbarous rapacity which reduced them to such a condition. *

Keightley's History of England, p. 133.

seen,

* The religious houses were suppressed at two several times; the first suppression was in the year 1536, and extended only to the lesser monasteries whose revenues were below £200 a year. By this act three hundred and twenty-six monasteries were suppressed, and their revenues, amounting to £32,000 a year, were granted to the king, besides their goods, chattels, and plate, which were computed at £100,000 more. Hollinshe says, that 10,000 monks were turned out by the dissolution of the lesser monasteries. No great opposition was made to the measure, and two years after Henry laid his rapacious hands on the revenues of the greater monasteries. This completed the work of dissolution and the abolition of the monastic orders. The whole number of monasteries suppressed amounted to six hundred and forty-five; of these, twenty-eight had abbots, who enjoyed a scat in parliament. Ninety colleges were dissolved in several counties; two thousand three hundred and seventy-four churches and free chapels, and a hundred and ten hospitals. The

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THE REFORMATION. Thirteen years after the publication of his book against Martin Luther, for which he was compared by the pope to St. Jerome or St. Augustine, and rewarded with the title of “Defender of the Faith, Henry became so exasperated by the pontiff's refusal to annul his marriage with Catherine of Arragon, that he threw off all allegiance to the see of Rome, and commenced the great religigus revolution called the REFORMATION.

By the suppression of the monasteries, and the seizure of their 1 great revenues, he annihilated the power of the Catholic clergy, and to compel the general adoption of his new opinions he published a law, which from its horrid consequences was afterwards termed the Bloody Statute, by which it was ordained that “whoever, by, word or writing, denied transubstantiation, whoever maintained that the communion in both kinds was necessary, whoever asserted that it was lawful for priests to marry, whoever alleged that vows of chastity might be broken, whoever maintained that private masses were unprofitable, or that auricular confession was unnecessary, should be deemed guilty of heresy, and burned or hanged as the court should determine.” As the people were at that time chiefly composed of those who followed the opinions of Luther, and such as still adhered to the pope, this statute, with Henry's former decrees, in some measure excluded both, and opened a field for persecution, which soon after produced its dreadfül harvests. Bainham and Bilney were burned for their opposition to popery; Sir Thomas More and Bishop Fisher were beheaded for denying the king's supremasy. Those who had adhered to the pope, or those who followe, the doctrines of Luther, were equally the objects of royal vengeance and ecclesiastical persecution. From the multiplied alterations which were made in the national system of belief, mostly drawn up by Henry himself, few knew what to think, or what to profess; they were ready enough to follow his doctrines, how inconsistent or contradictory soever ; but as he was continually changing them himself, they could hardly pursue so fast as he advanced before them. Thomas Cromwell, raised by the king's caprice from being a blacksmith's son to be a royal favourite, together with Cranmer, now become

whole revenue of these establishments amounted to £161,100. The whole revenue of England, arising from lands and possessions, had been rated a little before this period at four millions a year ; so that the revenue of the monks did not exceed a twentieth part of the national income. Probably the revenues of the clergy at this day are a larger proportion of the industry of the community. It may also be remarked in favour of the Catholic clergy, that a very considerable proportion of their incomes was expended in hospitality, relieving and assisting the indigent, and in the education of the people.

Hume, vol. iv., p. 180. Of all the instruments of ancient superstition no one was so zealously destroyed as the shrine of Thomas à Becket, commonly called St. Thomas of Canterbury. Henry not only pillaged it of its riches, but he cited the saint to appear in court, and be tried and condemned as a traitor. He ordered his name to be struck out of the calendar, the olice of his festival to be expunged from all breviaries, his bones to be burnt, and the ashes to be thrown in the air.

Ibid.

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Archbishop of Canterbury, were both seen to favour the Reformation with all their endeavours. On the other hand, Gardiner, Bishop of Winchester, together with the Duke of Norfolk, were for leading the king back to his original superstition. In fact, Henry submitted to neither; his pride had been long inflamed by flattery, and he thought himself entitled to regulate, by his own single opinion, the religious fate of the whole nation. Soon after no less than five hundred persons were imprisoned for contradicting the opinions delivered in the Bloody Statute ; and received protection only from the lenity of Cromwell. Lambert, a schoolmaster, and Doctor Barnes, who had been instrumental in Lambert's execution, felt the severity of the persecuting spirit, and by a bill in parliment, without any trial, were condemned to the flames, discussing thcological questions at the very stake. With Barnes were executed one Gerrard, and Jerome, for the same opinions. Three Catholics, also, whose names were Abel, Featherstone, and Powel, were dragged upon the same hurdles to execution, and declared that the most grevious part of their punishment was being coupled with such heretical miscreants as were united in the same calamity.*

Goldsmith, p. 137. DEATH OF HENRY VIII. The king's health had long been in a declining state, but for several days all those near him plainly saw his end approaching. Ie was become so froward that no one durst inform him of his condition; and as some persons during this reign had suffered as traitors for foretelling the king's death, every one was afraid lest in the transports of his fury he might, on this pretence, punish capitally the author of such friendly intelligence. At last Sir Anthony Denny ventured to disclose to him the fatal secret, and exhorted him to prepare for the fate which was awaiting him. He expressed his resignation, and desired that Cranmer might be sent for; but before the prelate arrived he was speechless, though he seemed still to retain his senses. Cranmer desired him to give some sign of his dying in the faith of Christ; he squeezed the prelate's hand, and immediately expired, in the 56th year of his age.

Hume, vol. iv., p. 264. PERSON AND CHARACTER. Henry was in his eighteenth year when he came to the throne, and was conspicuous for his handsome person and manly accomplishments. Few could equal and none excelled him in the use of arms, sports of the field, wrestling, and every other athletic exercise, while his accomplishments in music and languages, added to his joyous affability, invested him with such powers of fascination, that all classes hailed his accession with tumultuous delight, and presaged a long and happy reign. Thirty-six years

* It is calculated that not fewer than seventy thousand persons laid down their lives as martyrs, to what on either side of the question they believed to be the cause of God and truth.

Glieg's Histor

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