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one shall be obliged to criminate himself, that it excited universal indignation; Lord Burleigh himself strongly remonstrated against it, and the kingdom resounded with the clamours of those who were suspended, or deprived of their benefices in consequence of such an inquisitorial proceeding. But the Queen was now under the influence of a new favourite, Sir Christopher Hatton, a decided enemy of the Puritans, and Whitgift abated not a jot in his persecutions. The primate, however, did not stand alone in this hard persecution. Several other bishops persecuted as rigorously as he, and especially Aylmer, of London, who has left a worse name in this respect, than any prelate of Elizabeth's reign. The dioceses of London and Norwich were the strongholds of the proscribed sect, and, according to Neal, their historian, 233 clergymen were suspended in only six counties; Norfolk, Essex, and Sussex being three of them. To replace them, illiterate men were selected; for the Puritans formed so much the more learned and diligent part of the clergy, that there were few others, and in Cornwall, e. g., out of 140 clergymen, not one was capable of preaching.*
III. THE REVOLT OF THE NETHERLANDS, AND THE
22. The circumstances which caused the revolt. The Condition Netherlands anciently formed part of the kingdom of Nether- Lorraine, from which they passed to the Dukes of Charles V. Burgundy, and thence to the house of Austria. Under Charles V. there were seventeen provinces, all of which were independent of the empire, except in the payment of taxes. Of these, Holland, Friesland, and Zealand were the most deeply imbued with the Lutheran doctrines, and with that spirit of liberty which, in the middle ages, had so remarkably distinguished the Flemish cities; but the Walloon, or southern provinces, retained their attachment to the ancient faith. The famous edict of Worms (1521), which spread persecution throughout the empire, also extended to the Low Countries; and, as the people were more daring and enterprising than the rest of the Emperor's subjects, the persecution against them was carried on more bitterly than elsewhere, and from fifty to one hundred thousand Protestants were hanged, beheaded, or burnt alive, in the Netherlands, in the course of the next thirty years. Such a prodigious slaughter as this, was, of itself, sufficient to render any people irreconcileable, whose spirit it had not extinguished; but Hallam's Const. Hist., I., 200, Note.
Philip II., as soon as he succeeded to the Spanish throne, Under added to it other causes of discontent, almost as Philip II. powerful. To extirpate the reformers he introduced the Inquisition, and established a foreign hierarchy in the country; and he violated the Belgian laws by stationing Spanish soldiers in the chief towns. These proceedings urged the nobility, both Protestant and Catholic, to form a conspiracy at Breda, called the Compromise, for the purpose of putting down the Inquisition; the leaders in which, headed by Count Louis, of Nassau, the brother of the Prince of Orange, laid their grievances before the Duchess of Parma, the regent. Their humble dress excited the ridicule of the Spaniards, who called them Guex, or Beggars, a name which they afterwards adopted as a title of honour. Several riots now ensued; and, in revenge, Philip sent the terrible Duke of Alva into the provinces with a large army. He at once established the " 'Council of Blood," under Alva's whose authority 18,000 persons are said to have been tyrannies. executed, and more than 30,000 entirely ruined by the confiscations which it decreed. Conspicuous among the former were the Counts Egmont and Horn; but, although their execution excited general indignation, no combined resistance was made till Alva began to levy taxes for the support of his troops, who were already living at free quarters upon the people. This arbitrary act filled up, in the estimation of the Flemings, the measure of their grievances; they gave up their trades, and betook themselves to war; the Beggars revived, and the Count de la Marcke, called the Boar of Ardennes, captured, with English aid, the town of Brille (April, 1572).*
This exploit led to a revolution; the Prince of Orange, who, with his brother Louis, had been carrying on the war in Friesland, was elected Stadtholder by the provinces of Holland, Zealand, and Utrecht, which formed themselves into a republic, and established the Calvinist form of worship. Elizabeth watched these events with satisfaction, and she allowed English volunteers to go over to assist in the defence of Flushing (1572).
23. Elizabeth makes an alliance with the insurgents. The Duke of Alva was now recalled; and in 1576, there being no governor, the Spanish troops broke out into open mutiny, and sacked Antwerp. This led the Belgian states to seek the assistance of the Prince of Orange, and the Pacification The of Ghent was agreed to, by which the confederates bound of Ghent. themselves to assist each other in expelling the foreign soldiers.
* Motley's Dutch Republic, I., 433; II., 177-302.
Don John, of Austria, the next governor, ratified this treaty, that he might conciliate the Flemings; but they discovered that his friendship was treacherous, and they intercepted his letters, which disclosed his project, not only for subduing the Netherlands, but for the conquest of England, and the marriage and liberation of the Scottish Queen. Elizabeth was already acquainted with these designs, but she now hesitated no longer to succour the insurgents openly; and an alliance, offensive and defensive, was concluded with the States-general at Brussels (January, 1578), in which besides guaranteeing to them men and money, she stipulated that they should conclude no peace without her consent, nor afford any asylum to her rebels within their territories. provinces. In spite, however, of English aid, the Prince of Orange did not succeed; and the Walloon provinces withdrew from the. confederacy, because their proposal that the Duke of Anjou, formerly the Duke of Alençon, should hold the supreme command, was rejected by Elizabeth and the Protestant states.
Secession of the Walloon
Assassination of the Prince of
24. Formation of the Dutch republic. This secession caused the northern states to form a union amongst themselves at Utrecht (January 23rd, 1579), known afterwards by the name of the Republic of the United Provinces. On this, Philip pronounced the Prince of Orange a traitor, and offered a price for him, dead or alive. The United Provinces then formally renounced their allegiance (1581), and to obtain the support of England and France, offered the government to the Duke of Anjou, who was then in England, negotiating a marriage with Elizabeth. But the negotiation came to nothing; the Prince of Orange was assassinated at Delft (July Orange. 10th, 1584); and Elizabeth, at the request of the states, sent the Earl of Leicester with an army, to undertake their government and the command of their forces. He landed at Flushing, of which his nephew and presumptive heir, the celebrated Sir Philip Sidney, was then governor. But he proved no Leicester in match for Farnese, Duke of Parma, who had succeeded Don John in the regency; he offended the Queen and the Dutch by his haughtiness and arrogance; he placed such restrictions upon trade as drove the merchants of Antwerp to the free cities of Germany; and his government, thus becoming intolerable, Elizabeth recalled him, to honour him still more, however, by appointing him lieutenant-general of the kingdom in the Armada year; in the greatest crisis which had visited England since the Norman conquest.
25. The Second and Third Huguenot Wars.
Medicis had won over the Huguenots to the late treaty by promising that Condé should be made lieutenant-general of the kingdom in the room of Navarre. But as soon as she had gained her object she instigated the Duke of Anjou, the King's next brother, to claim the post as his right. This treachery, together with the terrible rumours which were now everywhere circulated, of the designs of the Catholic monarchs to exterminate the heretics, (and which appeared to be confirmed at that time by the march of Alva's army through France, on its way to suppress the revolt of the Netherlands,) excited the Huguenots to a fresh insurrection, in which they met with a terrible defeat at the great Battle of battle of St. Denis (November 10th, 1567). But the St. Denis. loss of the Constable Montmorenci turned the victory of their opponents into a defeat; the Protestants roused themselves to fresh efforts, and the government again concluded a treaty of peace with them at Longjumeau (1568). As before, the treaty was not observed; the Protestants were still massacred by thousands; and a third civil war began, in which Condé sought the aid of Elizabeth and the Prince of Orange. The disgraceful termination of her former alliance with the Huguenots was not forgotten by Elizabeth; but the necessity of supporting Elizabeth the reformers overcame her repugnance, and a gallant the band of volunteers went over to France, the most noted Huguenots. among whom was Walter Raleigh.
But the Channel was also the scene of many naval engagements between English privateers and Spanish vessels bound Operations for the Netherlands. To escape these rovers, a fleet of Channel. five sail, carrying stores and money to Alva, took refuge on the English coast (December, 1568). Elizabeth seized the money, alleging that it belonged to some Italian bankers, who had exported it from England; on which Alva imprisoned the English merchants in Flanders, and seized their goods. The Queen retaliated; at the same time the French government seized all the English merchandise in Rouen; English privateers revenged this by attacking the French coasts, and the government by sending a fleet to Rochelle, the great stronghold of the Huguenots; and the Duke of Alva then encouraged the conspiracy of Norfolk. Thus hostilities spread; but the cause of the Huguenots did not prevail; Condé was defeated, and slain in cold blood at the battle of Jarnac (March 14th, 1569); the Duke of Anjou defeated Coligny at Montcontour (3rd October); and a third treaty was therefore concluded, in the same terms as before, at St. Germainen-laye (August 5th, 1570).
CHAP. V. Catherine and her
26. The massacre of St. Bartholomew.
Huguenot leaders invited to
marriage with the King's
son, Charles IX., how resolved on other plans for the destruction of the Huguenots. Coligny, with Henry of Bourbon, the young King of Navarre, now the ostensible leader of Paris. the Protestants; his brother, the Prince of Condé; their mother, the Queen of Navarre, and the chief Huguenot leaders, had retired to their stronghold, Rochelle. To lure them from thence, Charles proposed the hand of his sister, Margaret de Valois, to Navarre, and offered Coligny the command of an army which he said was about to march to the aid of the Prince of Orange. The bait took; and Coligny, Navarre, and his mother, came to Paris, where Charles received them with every demonstration of joy and affection. The Queen of Navarre died in a few days, of grief and vexation it is said-probably she foresaw Navarre's what was coming; but the marriage of Navarre was solemnised shortly afterwards, and numerous revels and sister. banquets kept the court merry for some days. During all this, however, there was sitting in the palace a secret conclave, deliberating upon the massacre of the Huguenots. Coligny was marked as the first victim. On the 22nd of August, as he was returning home, after playing at tennis with the King and the Duke of Guise, he was shot by an assasin, called "The Coligny. king's murderer." Charles, feigning anger and surprise, went to console the wounded man, and returned to the palace to give orders for the immediate massacre of the Protestants in Paris. The bloody work began at two o'clock next morning, under the direction of Guise, Anjou, and the King. For eight days and nights the massacre and pillage went on with unrelenting fury; Coligny was butchered as he lay on his dying bed, and his carcase was thrown out of the window, but his head was sent to Rome. Navarre and Condé saved themselves by confessing the Catholic faith. The massacre extended though all the chief towns of the provinces; and the number of victims is variously estimated at from 30,000 to 100,000. As more than 2,000,000 Huguenots still remained to execute vengeance for this diabolical deed, Charles issued an edict of pacification; he denied all participation in it, although it was well known that he had shot Huguenots in sport as they fled past the palace; and he sent excuses to the foreign courts. The court of Spain, and the Pope, celebrated the massacre with solemn masses and thanksgivings; medals were issued to commemorate it; and Alva's army, then besieging Mons, suspended their works, and spent a day in festivity and rejoicing on account of it.*
* Browning's Huguenots, ch. 26-30; Mackintosh, 227-238.
Papal rejoicings after the massacre.