« ПредыдущаяПродолжить »
"with that which came not from Lincoln that "was, nor London that is, nor York that is to be, but from Troy. Whereupon the King "fmiled; and answered the Marquis, Truly, my Lord, I have heard that corn now grows where Troy town ftood; but I never thought that "there had grown any apricots before, Whereupon the Marquis replied, Any thing to please your Majefty. When my Lord Marquis departed the prefence, one told him that he would "make a very good Courtier. Remember well, replied the Marquis, that I faid one thing which may give you fome hopes of me: Any thing to pleafe your Majefty."
Apophthegmes of the EARL OF WORCESTER.
BLANCHE, LADY ARUNDELL,
BARONESS OF WARDOUR.
Fortes creantur fortibus & bonis.
The offspring of a noble race
The courfer of a gen'rous breed
fays Horace, and Lady Arundell confirms his affertion. The fame courage, the fame fpirit, which her father the Earl of Worcester exhibited in the defence of his Castle of Ragland, this excellent woman difplayed at the fiege of Wardour Caftle. The account of the noble defence the made against her favage and unprincipled befiegers, is told in the " Mercurius Rufticus," a kind of Newspaper of those times in which it was written; and which, in the narrative of the behaviour of the Parliamentary Generals, ferocious and infolent as it is, will recall, for the honour of the country where it happened, but imperfectly perhaps to the mind of the reader, the fcenes of ravage, desolation, and murder, that have taken place in a neighbouring Nation; which, not fatiffied with the destruction of its old corrupt Government, has raised upon the ruins of it a fyftem of tyranny and of rapine without example in the annals of the world.
EXTRACT FROM MERCURIUS RUSTICUS.
"On Tuesday the second of May 1643, Sir "Edward Hungerford, a Chief Commander of
"the rebels in Wiltshire, came with his forces before Wardour Caftle in the fame county, being the manfion-house of the Lord Arundell "of Wardour. But finding the castle strong, "and thofe that were in it refolute not to yield "it up unless by force, called Colonel Strode to
his help. Both these joined in one made a << body of 1300, or thereabout. Being come "before it, by a trumpet they fummon the caftle "to surrender: the reafon pretended was, be
cause the caftle being a receptacle of cavaliers "and malignants, both Houfes of Parliament
had ordered it to be fearched for men and "arms, and withal by the fame trumpeter declared, that if they found either money or plate, they would feize on it for the ufe of the Parliament. The Lady Arundell (her husband being then at Oxford, and fince that dead there) refused to deliver up the castle; and bravely replied, that fhe had a command from "her Lord to keep it, and fhe would obey his "command.
Being denied entrance, the next day, being "Wednesday the third of May, they bring up "the cannon within mufquet-fhot, and begin "the battery, and continue from the Wednesday "to the Monday following, never giving any "intermiffion to the beficged, who were but wenty-five fighting men, to make good the place
"place against an army of 1300 men. In this "time they spring two mines; the firft in a vault, through which beer and wood and other neceffaries were brought into the castle: this did not "much hurt, it being without the foundation of "the caftle. The fecond was conveyed in the "fmall vaults; which, by reafon of the intercourfe "between the feveral paffages to every office, and "almost every room in the castle, did much fhake "and endanger the whole fabrick.
"The rebels had often tendered fome unrcafonable conditions to the befieged to furrender; "as to give the ladies, both the mother and the
daughter-in-law, and the women and children, "quarter, but not the men. The ladies both
infinitely fcorning to facrifice the lives of their "friends and fervants to redeem their own from "the cruelty of the rebels, who had no other "crime of which they could count them guilty "but their fidelity and carneft endeavours to pre"ferve them from violence and robbery, choose bravely (according to the noblenefs of their "honourable families from which they were both "extracted) rather to die together than live on "fo difhonourable terms.
But now, the caftle
brought to this diftrefs, the defendants few, oppreffed with number, tired out with conti"nual watching and labour from Tuesday to Monday, fo diftracted between hunger and "want of reft, that when the hand endeavoured
"to administer food, furprised with fleep it for
got its employment, the morfels failing from "their hands while they were about to eat, deluding their appetite; now, when it might "have been a doubt which they would first have "laded their mufquets withal, either powder
before bullet, or bullet before powder, had not "the maid-servants (valiant beyond their sex) affifted them, and done that fervive for them; laftly, now, when the rebels had brought pe "tarrs, and applied them to the garden-doors, (which, if forced, opened a free paffage to the caftle,) and balls of wild-fire to throw in at "their broken windows, and all hopes of keep
ing the caftle was taken away; now, and not "till now, did the befieged found a parley. And
though in their Diurnals at London they have "told the world that they offered threefcore
thousand pounds to redeem themselves and the "castle, and that it was refused, yet few men take "themfelves to be bound anything the more to "believe it because they report it. I would "Mafter Cafe would leave preaching treafon, and inftruct his difciples to put away lying, and fpeak every man truth of his neighbour. Certainly the world would not be fo abused with "untruths as they now are; amongst which "number this report was one: for if they in the "caftle offered fo liberally, how came the rebels