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was beheaded, confessed intentions of destroying CHAP. her chief counsellors.55
As many marriages were planned for Mary in the commencement of 1563 as had been talked of for Elizabeth ; but the civil war had now began in all its evils and perturbations, in France, between the Catholic and Protestant parties; and on 19 December, the undeciding but calamitous battle, near
A promise was likewise made by the pope and cardinal Lorraine, of a supply of money, to enable her the better to execute her purposes; and that Murray and some of the greatest enemies of the Catholic faith were to be put to death. Keith,224. That there were communications in this August, between Mary and the Guises, we learn from a passage in Throckmorton's despatch to Elizabeth, from Paris, of 5 Aug. 1562. 'The 4th of this present, James Bethon, servant to the queen of Scotland, and son to the late cardinal Bethon, departed from this town towards Boulogne or Calais, to embark, and so to pass thro your realms into Scotland. He taketh upon him to do the good purposes he goeth about, being despatched from the cardinal of Lorraine without my knowledge. He is one of the worst affected to your nation that is of his nation. He carrieth with him as ill devices to be put in use against your majesty, as the papists here can devise. He returneth home, as I am informed, to procure that there may be some business upon the frontier of Scotland towards England.' Forbes' State Papers, v. 2. p. 14. On 15 Oct. 1562, his further report was: The house of Guise, with the advice of the cardinal of Ferrara, and the Spanish ambassador here, have lately despatched Villemort and La Crocque, servants to the queen of Scotland, to pass thro your majesty's realm; and there to make some trouble if they see opportunity, and to exasperate the queen of Scotland and her papistical council to make some trouble on the frontier, and to do what they can to deprive the earl [Murray,] Lethington and all others which favor the Protestant religion, of their credit and authority with her.' ib. 115.
55 So Randolph on 18th Nov. apprised Cecil. See his letter in Keith, 230. Maitland's language to Cecil, on 14th Nov. on Huntley, is also strong: 'Wicked enterprise; unnatural subject; his iniquity; no just occasion of grudge was ever offered to him.' Lett. in Keith, 232. What Knox mentions of his demeanor at their violent sermons were natural feelings: Have ye not seen him pick his nails, and pull down his bonnet over his eyes, when idolatry, witchcraft, murder,oppression,and such vices were rebuked? Was not this his common talk? When these knaves have railed their fill, then will they hold their peace.' p. 348.
56 On 17th Jan. sir Thomas Smith reported, that the cardinal of Lorraine was working for it, and offereth the emperor's son the marriage of the queen of Scotland. She serveth them for a good scale. She has been offered to the king of Spain's son; to the king of Navarre; the king of Sweden; and the cardinal of Bourbon, who is no priest.' Forbes, 287. Knox mentions that the duke of Nemours, as well as lord Darnley, was talked of. p. 347.
BOOK Dreux, took place between the connetable with the duke of Guise against the prince of Condé and the admiral." Yet altho little advantage resulted to the duke from the conflict, the honor of the day being attributed to his bravery and talent, greatly increased his personal reputation;58 but his popularity only enlarged his desire and power to extinguish his reformed opponents.
The papal spirit of her uncles was now in full activity in Mary's bosom: and she expressed her feelings and secret determinations in a private letter to the pope, 60 whom she referred to her uncle for
57 Throckmorton, who saw the conflict, describes it fully in his report. The admiral with the vanguard defeated Montmorency's battalions, and took him prisoner. Guise overthrew Condé's wing, and made him a captive, and kept the field of battle. Lett. 3 Jan. 1563. Forbes, 251. D'Andelot on 5th Jan. assured Elizabeth' que l'avantage n'a été ni d'un cotê, ni d'autre.' Lett. ib. 263. Eight hundred gentlemen fell in it (p. 276); and marshal St. André, duc de Nevers, and other nobles.
58 Throckmorton evinces the general feeling in his own impression: 'He behaved himself like a great and valiant captain; and such victory as remained to him; such victory I may say, because if all be well considered, it is very doubtful; the duke may challenge to himself.' ib. p. 252.
59 So Throckmorton indicated on 13th Jan. after many conversations with him: The duke of Guise, as far as I can perceive, will in no wise accord to peace, till the Protestants be utterly exterminated.' Lett. ib. 277.
60 I am not aware that these two letters of Mary have been noticed before. That to the pope is in Latin, dated 30th Jan. 1563. Most holy father! Our mind has always been so to bend our desire, thought and labor, that some means might be offered to us by heaven, by which we could bring back our wretched people, whom, with the greatest grief, we have found strayed from the good way, and every where subject to fugitive opinions and condemned errors. This extreme iniquity of the time has particularly displeased us, and has not yet suffered us to do our duty in what concerned the sacred council, tho we peculiarly desired it. We pray your holiness not to think that this has been omitted from our fault, for we have tried every thing in order to send prelates from our kingdom. We hoped that such a good and holy proceeding would serve to the edification of our subjects, that at length they might acknowlege in a worthy manner the holy Catholic Roman church, with that obedience in which we might live and die your most devoted daughter. Certainly we will spare no means in our power,nor even our life.' Lett. in Plat's Concil. Trident. v. 4. p. 661,
a fuller disclosure of her intentions." This seems to CHAP. have been written at the instigation of the Spanish prime minister, and was accompanied by another to her relative, the cardinal, declaring her determined adhesion to the Romish See; her fixed aversion to the reformed opinions; her resolution to lose her life, if she could benefit her church, rather than forsake it.65 She adds her desire to act conformably to his will.06 These letters indicate that she was carrying on an unknown intercourse with the mortal enemies of the great national improvement, which both England and Scotland had adopted; and which in her public government she was ostensibly supporting and lead us to infer, that from the opposition between her private sentiments and connexions, and her public situation and acts, a profound dissimulation was becoming a part of her political
61 We have asked our relation the cardinal Lorraine, that, kissing the feet of your holiness, he would more fully explain to you our mind.' ib. 661.
62 It is in her letter to the cardinal, dated the same 30th Jan, that she mentions this suggestion. I translate it from the Latin in which it has been printed: My kinsman! an opportunity offering, I would not be wanting in my duty to preserve your favour and friendship towards me. As cardinal Granvelo made me secure, he has caused me to add to yours, these letters to our most holy lord, which I wish to render to him with due reverence.' Plat. Mon. p. 660.
63 6 In these I profess and affirm that I will live and die in the ancient obedience to the Catholic and Roman church. I repute it to be the head, and its pontiff the supreme shepherd, whom I supplicate that he may acknowledge me his devoted daughter.' ib.
64 I pray you to testify of me as far as you can, that the many execrable errors in which the greatest part of this kingdom is immersed, particularly displease me, yet I must be a spectator of them.' ib.
65 Believe me that I should be most happy if I could meet with any remedy to these evils; even if that must be with the expenditure of my life; for I have determined rather to lose that than to change this my faith, or to give ear in any respect to these heresies.' ib. 661.
66 You may be certain that I will listen to you; and I earnestly beg, that if I have in any way been less intent on religion than was fit, that you will excuse me; for you know the purposes of my will more exactly than any other.' ib. 661.
MOD. HIST. VOL. IV.
BOOK habit or mental character. A few days after writing these letters, Mary showed that gaiety of temper and levity of manners were not incompatible with severe
The queen, who had a personal gratification in talking to Knox, when she made her spring excursion toward St. Andrew's, sent for him to Lochlevin. She exerted her eloquence upon him for two hours, to have the Catholics allowed the free use of their religion, till somewhat offended' at his impracticability, she passed to her supper. But next
67 In November preceding she had received letters from her French uncles by Chastelard, whose infatuation and presumption became fatal to him from her own previous imprudence and subsequent displeasure. In one of her dances, called 'The Purpose, in which the man and woman talketh secretly,' as Knox describes it, Mary chose the French gentleman for her partner, because he had the best dress.' 'All this winter he was so familiar with the queen, that the nobility being by this means stopped to have free access [to her] as they thought fit and due to them, were highly offended.' Knox, 351. Presuming on this, Chastelard on the evening of 12th Feb. concealed himself in her bedchamber as she was about to retire to it. Her female attendants observed and turned him out; and Mary being the next morning apprized of it, forbad him her presence. Two nights after, as she retired to her room, he followed her to clear himself, as he said, from the imputations which had been cast upon him. She cried out for help, and then sent for the earl of Murray. When he came, she ordered him to stab the Frenchman with his dagger; but the earl thought it better to put him under arrest. Rand. Lett. Chal. 157. Knox says, that Murray falling on his knees, desired her not to cause him to take the man's blood upon him. Your majesty hath used him so familiarly before, and now if he shall be secretly slain at your own commandment, what will the world judge of it?" O!' said the queen, you shall not let him speak.' He was tried for the offence, and in eight days was beheaded. As he suffered, looking up to the sky, he exclaimed, 'O cruel dame!' Knox, 351. Brantome mentions that he read over on the scaffold Ronsard's Hymn on Death, as his only preparation for the fatal stroke. His own account of his condemnation was, 'Pour être trouvé en lieu trop suspect.' Knox, ib.
68 John's statement is, 'She dealt with him earnestly two hours before supper, that he would be the instrument to persuade the people, and principally the gentlemen of the west, not to put hand to punish any man for the using of themselves in their religion as pleased them.' p. 352. A most laudable object, if it were not meant as a step to their power and means of persecuting afterwards.
morning, as she diverted herself with hawking, she CHAP. wished another colloquy with this important leader, in which she endeavored to incline his mind against a prelate she disliked, not without reason;" and to procure a reconciliation for her natural sister, lady Argyle, with her husband; then suddenly reverting to their conference on the preceding night, promised to be governed by his advice." Knox records these interviews, to let the world see how deeply Mary queen of Scotland can dissemble.' 72
Her pleasant journey and rural enjoyment73 was saddened by tidings of the assassination of the duke
69 She began by mentioning that a ring had been offered her by lord Ruthven, whom I cannot love, for I know him to use enchantment, and yet he is one of my privy council.'-'I understand that ye are appointed to go to Dumfries for the election of a superintendant to be established in these countries; but I hear that the bishop of Caithness would be such. If ye knew him as well as I do, ye would never promote him to that office; nor yet to any other within your kirk. Well, do as you will; but that man is a dangerous man.' p.354. Knox owns that the queen was not deceived in her conception of his character.
70 When the queen had long talked with John Knox, and he oft willing to take his leave, she said, 'I have one of the greatest matters that have touched me since I came into this realm to open to you, and I must have your help in it.' She began a long discourse of her sister, the lady Argyle; how that she was not so circumspect in all things as she wished her to be. And yet her husband, whom I love, useth her not in many things so honestly and so godlily, as I think ye yourself would require: well, it is worse than ye believe. But do this much for my sake, as once again to put them at unity, and if she behave not herself as she ought to do, she shall find no favor of me, but in any wise let my lord know that I have requested you in this matter, for I would be very sorry to offend him in that or in any other thing.' Knox, 354.
And now,' said she, 'as touching our reasoning yesternight, I promise to do as you required. I shall cause to summon all offenders, and ye shall know that I shall minister justice.' ib. It was on 19 April that she was at Lochlevin House. Chalm. 159.
72 Knox, p. 354. To effectuate the queen's request, John wrote to Argyle a letter that was neither very wise nor very successful. See ib. p. 355, 6. But he had only one style of thought and manner, and this was certainly not of the molliter fandi.'
73 The queen is not healthy and merry: most commonly riding in the fields as time will serve her.' Rand. 10 March. Chalm. 159.