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it was enacted in the bill which attainted Catherine, that it was high treason in any woman about to marry the King not to confess her unchastity to him, if she has been actually unchaste (31 Hen. VIII., c. 21); a clause which, making the concealment of vice a capital offence, was worthy of the reign of such a tyrant.*
V. AFFAIRS OF WALES AND IRELAND; SCOTLAND AND FRANCE.
64. Wales. It will be convenient for us here, to take a view of Henry's domestic policy regarding Wales and Ireland.
Ever since its conquest the principality had been unequally divided into two portions:
of Wales before the
Statute of 1586.
(a) That which was conquered by Edward and his successors. (b) And that which had been subdued by individual barons, the lords marchers.
The former was divided into shires, and governed by English laws; the latter formed so many lordships, or independent jurisdictions, from which the King's writs and King's officers were excluded, and in which the lords had their own courts and officers, their own laws and customs, enjoying, in fact, all the privileges of counts palatine. These petty and separate jurisdictions were places of refuge to which an offender could escape, and remain at large with impunity, if he could purchase the protection of the lord in whose jurisdiction he took shelter. Henry, therefore, determined to put an end to such a mischievous state of things, and in 1536 it was enacted, that the whole of Wales should be incorporated with England; that the natives should be admitted to all the rights and privileges which Englishmen enjoyed; that the lordships marchers should be annexed to the neighbouring counties; the separate jurisdictions abolished, and the whole country subjected to the laws and courts of the whole realm. The counties, with one borough in each, were to send members to parliament, twenty-seven in all; and the county of Monmouth, which had hitherto formed a part of Wales, was annexed to England. Most of these regulations were extended to the county palatine of Chester (27 Hen. VIII.).†
65. Condition of Ireland before the accession of the Tudors. The last King of England who had taken any interest in the affairs of Ireland was Richard II.; but after he left the island, the Irish returned to their former state of independence and hostility, and during the Wars of the Roses, they almost annihilated the English supremacy. They possessed all Ulster, and shared Connaught with the degenerate Burkes; independent tribes
* Mackintosh, II., 231. + Blackstone, I., 95.
occupied a considerable part of Leinster, while in the south the Earls of Desmond, lords of the counties of Kerry, Limerick, Cork, and Waterford, ruled independently, and more like Irish chieftains than English barons. The elder branch of their house, the Fitzgeralds, Earls of Kildare, and the Butlers, Earls of Ormond or Ossory, were the two chief families which still remained steady in their obedience to the crown; but they were rivals. and were engaged in continual feuds. Thus, in the reign of Henry VII. the English authority had reached its lowest point; it was confined to the seaports between Dublin and Dundalk, and to about one half of the counties of Louth, Westmeath, Dublin, Kildare, and Wexford; the rest of the island was unequally divided among 60 Irish and 30 English chieftains. From this time, however, English authority gradually recovered; the steady counsels and firm prerogative of the Tudors leaving little chance of escape from their authority.
66. Poyning's law. The first and most important measure by which this was effected, was the famous Statute of Drogheda, enacted in 1495, during the deputyship of Sir Edward Poyning, and better known by the name of Poyning's law. Its chief provision was, that no parliament should for the future be held in Ireland until the chief governor and council had first certified to the King, under the great seal, the causes and considerations, and all acts they designed to pass; and, till the same should be approved of by the King and his council, and his licence to hold the parliament obtained. This enactment placed a check on the lord deputies, often powerful Irish nobles, whom it was dangerous not to employ, but still more dangerous to trust; it prevented the evils which could not but arise from the existence of a separate legislature in Ireland, independent of that in England; and the recurrence of such a scene as had lately been witnessed, viz., the summoning of a parliament by the lord deputy to saction the claims of the impostor, Lambert Simnel.
67. Pacification of Ireland under Henry VIII. Under Henry VIII. the royal authority revived still more. The most powerful lords within the English pale at this time were, the Fitzgeralds, the Earls of Kildare; who, though they affected a submission to the crown, were in reality so independent of it, as to keep in their hands the chief authority of government. In times of weakness, the English court had balanced their influence by strengthening the rival family of the Butlers; but Wolsey perceived that this only undermined the royal authority; and, that he might extinguish the hereditary feuds between these two houses, he appointed the Earl
of Surrey, afterwards the Duke of Norfolk, to the office of lord deputy (1520). The earl's vigorous government overawed the turbulence of the Irish lords, but in two years he was recalled, and the Earl of Kildare compelled Butler, Earl of Ossory, who had been appointed to succeed Surrey, to resign the government to him. He retained it, however, only for a short time, but in 1532 he again assumed power. The self-confidence with which he was now inspired, and his affectation of the state of an independent prince, by surrounding himself with Irish lords, led to his ruin; on the complaints of the Butlers, Henry commanded him to repair to London, and he was imprisoned in the Tower. At his departure he had delegated the administration to his son, Lord Thomas Fitzgerald; who, believing a false report of the execution of his father, rashly declared war against Henry, and entered into a treasonable correspondence with the Emperor and the Pope (1534). The primate, who was supposed to have accused his father, was murdered by his wild followers; but the citizens of Dublin, and the reinforcements sent from England, suppressed this hasty rebellion. Its leader was sent a prisoner to London; his five uncles, some of whom were not concerned in his treason, were perfidiously captured, at a banquet, by Lord Gray, and all the six perished on the scaffold (February, 1537). The old earl had already died of a broken heart, and one sole surviving child, twelve years old, who escaped to Flanders, became afterwards the stock from which the great family of the Fitzgeralds was restored. Some years after the suppression of this rebellion, Ireland was raised from a lordship to the rank of a kingdom (1542), the native chiefs came in and submitted, and were rewarded with peerages of the new kingdom; the famous O'Neil was made Earl of Tyrone, and de Burgh was created Earl of Clanricarde; the Earl of Desmond, almost as independent as any of the natives, attended parliament, from which his ancestors, for some ages, claimed a dispensation; the English dress and language were established by fresh laws, so that never since the time of Henry II. did the English ascendancy in Ireland appear to rest on so firm a basis as during the last years of Henry VIII.* 68. Henry's relations with Scotland and France. When we last considered the affairs of Scotland, we left the Earl of Angus in possession of the young King, James V., and of the regency, after the final departure of the Duke of Albany his nephew (1522). Six years after this, James contrived to escape Scotland. from his keepers; he levied an army, and drove them
between Henry and
* Hallam's Const. Hist., II., 519-525; Lingard, VI., 321-27; Moore, chap. 45 and 46.
beyond the borders, and Angus remained in England, a pensioner upon the court. David Beaton, afterwards cardinal, the persecuting archbishop of St. Andrews, who had aided him in recovering his liberty, became James's chief adviser, and the ancient alliance with France was renewed. Some hostilities broke out on the borders in 1532, owing to the intrigues of Angus and the Douglases; but Henry was anxious to be on good terms with his nephew, especially after he had separated himself from Rome; he offered him his daughter Mary in marriage, and endeavoured to persuade him to follow his own example, and throw off the supremacy of the Pope, and further solicited a personal interview at York, 1535. But the more Henry attacked Rome, the more James appeared determined to defend it; and being completely under the control of Beaton, he declined to see his uncle, married the Princess Madeleine, of France, and upon her death married Mary of Guise (1538), who became a powerful instrument in confirming his devotion to the ancient church. To rivet him still more closely to the Romish communion, Pope Paul III. conferred the dignity of cardinal upon his chief minister, Archbishop Beaton. Still Henry did not give up all hopes of withdrawing James from his continental alliances; in 1539 he despatched Sir Ralph Sadleir as his ambassador to Edinburgh, and again invited James to meet him at York (1541), and he even proceeded thither with his Queen, Catherine Howard, for that purpose. But the Scottish King was deaf to all persuasion; the Scottish parliament, as if to stigmatize the proceedings of that of England, passed several laws in support of the old doctrines, and of the papal supremacy, and Cardinal Beaton was soon afterwards sent with secret instructions to the courts of France and Rome. In the following year Henry declared war, and the Duke of English Norfolk invaded Scotland with a large army, after the Invasion of English warden of the east marches had been defeated under the by the Scots at Haldenrig, in Teviotdale. After he had Norfolk. accomplished the usual destruction, Norfolk retreated to Berwick. The Scottish King having assembled an army on the Borough Muir, advanced as far as Fala to invade England; but there was division among his followers; the majority of the nobles were favourable to the Reformation, and therefore opposed to his policy, and he was under the necessity of disbanding his army. Another force, however, was got together under Lord Maxwell, who crossed the borders, but was defeated at Solway Moss, and hundreds of his followers taken prisoners. This disaster broke the heart of the Scottish King; he immured himself in Falkland Palace, and
The confusion of affairs on the death
died on the 14th of December, 1542, a week after his Queen had given birth to a daughter, the unfortunate Mary, Queen of Scots. These unexpected events opened out new prospects to Henry, and he determined to marry his son Edward to the infant Queen, and then demand the government of Scotland as her guardian. The Earl of Angus, and the lords who had of James. been captured at Solway Moss, agreed to these proposals, and they were released, in order that they might proceed to Scotland to carry out the plan. But Cardinal Beaton produced a will of the late King which appointed him guardian of the Queen and realm. The Earl of Arran, however, presumptive heir to the throne, and one of the reforming party, drove him from the regency, and imprisoned him, and a treaty was concluded with Henry, stipulating the marriage which he had proposed (July, 1542). But only two months afterwards, Arran went over to the church party. Cardinal Beaton, who had obtained his release in the meantime, obtained possession of the young Queen, and secured the Highlands.
Henry, therefore, again declared war, and in May, 1544, the Earl of Hereford, the brother of Jane Seymour, arrived invasion. in the Forth with a powerful fleet, and with the aid of an army from Berwick, burnt Edinburgh and Leith. For two years the war was continued with the usual terrible inflictions upon the peaceful cultivators of the soil, and Kelso and Jedburgh were burnt to the ground. At length, a treaty of peace between England and France, which included Scotland, put an end to this barbarous warfare, in the same year in which Cardinal Beaton was murdered in the Castle of St. Andrews, not without the previous knowledge, if not instigation, of Henry and the English cabinet (1546)..
The interference of Francis in the affairs of Scotland induced Henry and Henry, in 1543, to renew his friendship with the Emperor, the Empe and conclude an alliance with him against France. Their agnance alleged ground of war was the confederacy which Francis France. had made with the Great Turk, the common enemy of Christendom. The beginning of the war was unimportant; but in July, 1544, Henry crossed the channel with 30,000 men, and advanced to Boulogne, which the Duke of Suffolk was then besieging. The town surrendered September 14th, but on the 18th the Emperor made a separate treaty with Francis at Cressy, alleging Henry's attack upon Boulogne was a departure from the meral objects of the alliance, the chief of which was, that he