The Project Gutenberg eBook of Agnes Strickland's Queens of England, Vol. 2. (of 3)

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Title: Agnes Strickland's Queens of England, Vol. 2. (of 3)

Author: Agnes Strickland

Adapter: Rosalie Kaufman

Author: Elisabeth Strickland

Release date: October 15, 2014 [eBook #47122]

Language: English

Credits: Produced by David Widger from page images generously
provided by the Internet Archive




Vol. II. of III, Abridged

By Rosalie Kaufman

Fully Illustrated

Boston: Estes & Lauriat






















Up to Queen Anne, this work is based upon Agnes Strickland's "Queens of England;" but subsequent to that period many authorities have been consulted, and only such matter used as would seem appropriate. My first care was to prepare a narrative which should interest young people, but I have endeavored also to produce a result that would prove a source, not only of pleasure, but of profit. The limits of the design make it evident that some eminent names and noteworthy events could receive slight mention, or none at all, and that politics could be introduced only when requisite for the comprehension of events that depended on them. It will be a satisfaction to hope that my readers may be prompted to independent inquiry.

R. K.


Park at Stowe............................................Frontispiece

Mary, First Queen-Regnant of England...............................014

Edward VI..........................................................025

Mary refuses to give up Mass.......................................028

Lady Jane Grey.....................................................033

Queen Mary plights her troth to Philip.............................049

Death of Latimer and Ridley........................................053

Queen Elizabeth....................................................057


London Street—Rainy Day in time of Elizabeth......................065

Old Palace at Hatfield.............................................070

St. James Park.....................................................079

Mary Stuart........................................................087

Sir Walter Raleigh.................................................095

Mary's Chamber.....................................................098

Destruction of the Armada..........................................103

Elizabeth boxing Essex on the Ear..................................107

Anne of Denmark....................................................111

Door to Holy rood..................................................115

Castle of Edinburgh................................................123

The Piscina........................................................131

Drawing-room at Winchester.........................................136

Execution of Sir Walter Raleigh....................................141

Henrietta Maria....................................................145

Château Fontainebleau..............................................149

The Plague.........................................................153

Maple-Durham Church and Mill.......................................163

Catharine of Braganza..............................................179

Cathedral of Guimaraês.............................................187

Queen's Bed........................................................199

The Oratory........................................................207

King's Apartment...................................................209

Great Fire in London...............................................215

Charles II.........................................................221

Chapel in the Tower................................................227

The Queen's Bower..................................................230

View of Oporto.....................................................233

Mary Beatrice......................................................239

Grande Monarque....................................................247


The Hôtel de Ville.................................................259


James II...........................................................273

Duke of Monmouth...................................................281

St. Germain........................................................297

James at the Battle of the Boyne...................................303

Louis XIV. in Old Age..............................................319


William and Mary...................................................341

Scene in Holland...................................................347

Monument of William at the Hague...................................351

The Retreat........................................................358

Entrance of William into London....................................369

Bentinck, Earl of Portland.........................................380

Gardens of William III.............................................382

Duke and Duchess of Marlborough....................................391

Anne of England....................................................401

Kensington Palace..................................................405

Hunting Lodge......................................................414

Chapel of Henry VII................................................427

William Thrown from his Horse......................................433

The Avon at Bristol................................................445

Windsor Forest.....................................................470

Anger of the Duchess of Marlborough................................481

Shrewsbury receiving the White Rod.................................495





(A.D. 1516-1558).

Mary was the only child of Henry VIII. and Katherine of Arragon who lived to maturity. She was born at Greenwich Palace in 1516, and was placed under the care of her mother's beloved friend, Margaret Plantagenet, Countess of Salisbury.

A.D. 1516. She was baptized the third day after her birth, and named for the king's favorite sister.

Mary's mother began her education as soon as she could speak, and when she was only three years old she sat up in state to receive some foreign visitors, and amused them by playing on the virginals, a musical instrument similar to a piano. It was in a box about four feet long, with an ivory key-board of two or three octaves, and was placed on a table when played upon.

At that time Mary was a bright, merry child, with rosy complexion and brown eyes, and such a pet with her parents that she remained with them at Greenwich until after her fourth birthday.

A.D. 1522. While Mary was yet in her cradle a marriage was spoken of for her with Francis I., but her mother [016]was anxious to see her united to her own nephew, the Emperor Charles V., who paid a visit to the English court when he was about twenty-three years old. He was there nearly five weeks, during which the little princess became very fond of him, and, young as she was, learned to consider herself his empress.

He signed a solemn treaty at Windsor to marry her when she was twelve years old, but was desirous that she should be sent to Spain for her education. Her parents would not consent to the separation, but engaged the best instructors for her, and had a plan of study drawn up by a Spaniard of deep learning. His rules were rigid; he required the young princess to read religious works night and morning, to translate English into Latin frequently, and to converse in that language with her teacher. He implored her never to read books of chivalry or romance, condemned a long list of light works as injurious to morals, and recommended instead Plato, Cicero, Seneca's Maxims, Plutarch, the works of Erasmus, Sir Thomas More's "Utopia," some of the classic poets, and the tragedies of Seneca. He deemed card-playing and fine dressing as injurious as romances, and gave rules for the pronunciation of Greek and Latin, requiring that lessons in those languages should be committed to memory every day, and read over two or three times before the pupil went to bed.

No wonder the poor child's health and spirits suffered, for she was only six years old when this system of education was enforced.

The Emperor Charles still continued to desire her to spend part of her time in Spain, but Henry VIII. promised instead that she should be brought up in England like a Spanish lady, and should even wear the national dress of that country. He added, that nobody in all Christendom [017]could be found to bring her up according to the customs of Spain better than her mother, who came of a noble house of that country, and, besides, that the princess was too young to undertake the voyage.

A.D. 1525. During the summer of 1525 a rumor reached England that Charles V. had engaged himself to Isabel of Portugal. This was little Mary's first sorrow, for her maids had persuaded her that she was really in love. But Charles had heard of the king's intention to divorce his wife and disinherit his daughter, and was excessively angry; in consequence, he thought best to revenge himself on Mary. He wrote a letter filled with reproaches to Henry, and married Isabel before the end of the year.

Then Mary, though only nine years of age, was established in a court of her own at Ludlow Castle, in Wales. She had not been called Princess of Wales, but received the same honors as though she had.

The Welsh were pleased to have the royal family represented in their country, and the officers and nobles of Mary's court superintended the newly-formed legislature.

Sir John Dudley, afterwards Earl of Warwick, was her chamberlain, and the Countess of Salisbury resided with her, as she had done from her birth, as head of her establishment. There were, besides, thirteen ladies of honor, and a large number of other officers.

Few children are so lovely, bright, and well-behaved as Mary was at that time, when she had her first lessons in playing the part of queen, which she was so soon to unlearn. Probably Henry placed her in the position of heir-apparent of England, hoping that she would make a grand match before he disinherited her, otherwise there could be no reason for it, considering the poverty and contempt she suffered later. [018]Her education went on steadily during the eighteen months she spent at Ludlow, and great care was taken of her exercise, diet, dress, and everything pertaining to her health and morals.

Her father made a desperate attempt to marry her to Francis I., but he was engaged to the widow of the King of Portugal, besides he was by no means anxious to marry a girl eleven years of age.

Spite of the methodical course of Mary's education she took part in the revelry at her father's court when she was not more than eleven years old, and danced a ballet with seven other ladies and eight lords. She also performed in one of Terence's comedies in the original Latin for the entertainment of the French ambassadors when they were at Hampton Court.

A.D. 1529. Her misfortunes dated from that period, for it was then that her mother's divorce began to be publicly discussed.

Katherine was anxious to marry her daughter to Reginald Pole, son of the Countess of Salisbury, but he had no desire to connect himself with the English court, though he was always fond of Mary, and gave as excuse that he had been educated for the church, though he never became either a priest or a monk. He did not hesitate to express to the king his entire disapproval of the pending divorce, and thus incurred the royal displeasure to such a degree that he was obliged to leave England.

For a long time Mary had been her mother's daily companion, but when she was about fifteen years of age she was separated from her, never to behold her again. This was such a source of grief to the young girl that she became seriously ill on account of it. Katherine wrote her daughter loving letters, and tried to console her for the loss of her instruction in Latin by assuring her that Dr. [019]Fetherstone was a much better teacher, but she never complained of the cause of their separation in any of her correspondence.

A.D. 1532. It was not until after the birth of Elizabeth that the king disinherited his daughter Mary, and declared her half-sister his heiress. Then orders were sent to her to lay aside the name and dignity of princess and remove to Hatfield, where the nursery of her infant sister was about to be established.

Mary was but seventeen at this time, but she showed a good deal of courage, when she told the messenger that she should not take the slightest notice of the order unless it were delivered to her in the king's own hand and bore his signature.

Then she wrote a private letter to her father, asking him whether he really meant to deprive her of her title. He did not condescend to reply, but a couple of months later her household, consisting of no less than three hundred and sixty persons, was suddenly broken up, and the poor girl was separated from the Countess of Salisbury and others, to whose society she had been accustomed during her whole life.

This was a blow far more bitter than being deprived of her title. Another trial it was to find herself no more than a dependent in her sister's household, which was fitted up with the magnificence she herself had just been robbed of. The comparison that she was daily forced to draw between the position of her infant sister and her own was enough to make her hate the child, but, strange to say, her affection for it was strong; and good Margaret Bryan, who had been her nurse, and was now performing the same service for Elizabeth, did all in her power to soothe the mind of her former charge, and encourage kindly feelings for her little sister. [020]Mary spent two years of sorrow and suffering at Hatfield Castle, where her stepmother treated her with extreme unkindness, and during that time several persons were sent to the Tower for calling her "Princess." This no doubt added greatly to her unhappiness. Besides, she was closely watched, and although allowed to read and study, writing was forbidden until after the death of Anne Boleyn, when in one of her letters she apologized for her bad penmanship on the ground that she had had no practice for two years.

A.D. 1535. Her position was so dreadful that most people pitied her, and the king was heard to mutter such harsh threats against her that it would not have occasioned much surprise if her head had been brought to the block. Her dying mother begged that she might have the satisfaction of knowing that Mary was near her, even though she were not permitted to see her, but the tyrant Henry refused, though the poor girl's health was suffering for want of her mother's tender care and affection. Even the sad satisfaction of a last farewell between the dying queen and her only child was forbidden, and Katherine of Arragon departed from this world without laying eyes on her daughter.

Mary wrote her father a congratulatory letter when he married Jane Seymour, but he took no notice of it, nor addressed her in any way until she was requested through his privy councillor to sign a paper renouncing all right to the throne. She could not have been induced to do this while her mother lived, but she was so broken down from sorrow and ill health that she no longer had the power to resist.

Then she was settled again in a household, with her little sister, at Hunsdon, which, though comfortable and peaceful, was poor and humble compared with what she had [021]enjoyed at Ludlow Castle. Mary was her own mistress there for three years, and spent most of the time in study, dividing off her day as she had been taught to do when under her mother's care. She studied astronomy, geography, natural philosophy, and mathematics, as well as Latin and Greek authors; read the church service daily with her chaplain, did a good deal of needle-work, and practised on three musical instruments. Latin was the universal language, so she spoke it with ease, and could read and write French, Spanish, and Italian besides.

A.D. 1537. She was not admitted to her father's presence until 1537, when, strange to say, although her tastes were refined, and her life a busy one, her journal contained items of high play at cards, and a fondness for betting and gambling, which was one of the vices of Henry's court, he himself being one of the greatest gamblers that ever wore a crown.

A.D. 1538 The year 1538 was filled with horrors on account of the serious insurrections of the Catholics, who in every case of disturbance demanded that the Princess Mary should be restored to her royal rank. This certainly placed her in a dangerous position, and it is rather surprising that she did not have her head chopped off in consequence, for the most dreadful executions took place; people were burnt alive or butchered in cold blood, and members of some of the noblest families in England perished on the scaffold.

The aged Countess of Salisbury, Mary's beloved friend, was locked up in the Tower, and all her property taken from her. She was not spared sufficient means to purchase warm clothing to shelter her infirm limbs, and the Marchioness of Exeter, with her little son, shared the same fate, though the boy was too young to have committed any offence. [022]The chief crime of these ladies was their friendship for Reginald Pole, who was accused of supporting the claims of Katherine of Arragon, Mary's mother. The existence of the young princess was rendered miserable by the wretched fate of those she loved, yet she was powerless to render them the slightest assistance.

Towards the close of the following year, Wriothesley, the privy-councillor, was sent to inform her that her father desired her to receive Duke Philip of Bavaria as a suitor. But Mary declined because she did not desire to marry at all, and would on no account ally herself to a Protestant.

A.D. 1539. The day after Anne of Cleves made her public entry into England, Henry appointed Philip Knight of the Garter on account of his defence of Vienna against the Turks, and he was the first Protestant who ever received that honor. Before he returned to Germany he presented Mary with a diamond cross, and expressed his intention of coming to claim her as his bride. She was spared the hardship of a struggle in opposing him because Henry's ill treatment of Anne of Cleves prevented the return of the brave German, who lived and died a bachelor.

A.D. 1540. In 1540 Mary was very ill at her brother's residence; the cause of it was probably the dreadful events that took place in England during that and the following year; for it was then that all her early friends, including Dr. Fetherstone and the Countess of Salisbury, were so shamefully butchered. It must be remembered that these were people whose lives were in every respect honorable and virtuous, but they were firmly attached to Queen Katherine and opposed to Henry in religious matters, and that was the head and front of their offending.

A.D. 1543. In 1543 Mary was present at the marriage of her father with Katherine Parr, and accompanied the royal couple when they made their summer trip through [023]several counties in England. But she was seized with an attack of her former illness, when she was sent to Ashbridge, where, with her brother and sister, she spent the autumn. While there she worked a chain as a New-year's gift for her father, and it had to be so large for that corpulent personage that the materials for it cost twenty pounds.

By the close of the year a delightful change took place in her life; she was restored to her rightful succession after Edward VI. by an act of parliament, and took up her residence at court.

A.D. 1547. Having made friends with her father once more, she continued in favor till the end of his life, and when he was dying he said to her: "I know well, my daughter, that fortune has been most adverse to you, that I have caused you infinite sorrow, and that I have not given you in marriage as I intended to do; this was, however, according to the will of God, or to the unhappy state of my affairs, or to your own ill-luck; but I pray you to take it all in good part, and promise me to be a kind and loving mother to your brother, whom I shall leave a little helpless child."

In his will he bequeathed to her the sum of ten thousand pounds towards her marriage portion, and an income of three thousand pounds a year so long as she remained unmarried.

He requested that his son should be brought up in the Catholic faith, which was a serious impediment to the Protestant church in England, and proved the cause of a great deal of strife among his subjects.

Before parliament met, after King Henry's death, the Protestant protector, Somerset, had, with Cranmer's assistance, taken decided steps for the establishment of the Reformed faith, and Bishop Gardiner was locked up in the Fleet Prison. [024]Mary was very anxious that her brother should be brought up a Catholic, and had a long controversy in writing with Somerset on that subject. It seems strange that her pen should have done any work for the Protestant church when she always opposed it, yet so it was, and her name appeared in the preface of the Gospel of St. John as translator.

A.D. 1548. Though Mary seldom attended her brother's court, she spent the following Christmas with him, and at that time they were on the most affectionate terms. She visited him again at St. James' Palace in 1548, and had a regular suite of reception rooms for her own use, where she entertained a number of friends in the most sumptuous style.

Two years later she was so ill that her death was generally expected. Had she died then how differently would her name have appeared in history! The hatred between Catholics and Protestants would have been less, and the horrible persecutions in Great Britain for religion's sake would never have taken place. But it was destined otherwise.

A.D. 1550. During this severe illness Mary had a long correspondence with Somerset, who urged her to join the Protestant faith, but she remained firm until, by a sudden turn of events, the protector was deposed by Dudley, Cranmer, and Northampton, who did not rest until they had brought about his execution. But she had further struggles to make for her religion; for when Dudley succeeded Somerset he had her chaplains arrested, and wanted to prevent her from having church service at all. She made an appeal to Charles V., whose ambassador espoused her cause, and demanded that the Princess Mary should have her mass. It was refused, whereupon the Emperor threatened war with England if Mary were not permitted



[027]to worship as she pleased. Several persons, women as well as men, were burned to death at this period for adhering to the Catholic faith, and the Emperor Charles V. had several ships off the east coast of England to receive Mary and convey her to his sister, the Queen of Hungary, for protection, if necessary. King Edward gave orders that his sister should be carefully watched lest she might be stolen away, then invited her to visit him, saying that the air of Essex was bad for her health, but she refused to leave.

Throughout the winter the controversy continued with regard to the form of worship in her chapel, the chief complaint against her being that she permitted all her neighbors to flock there in crowds, and that she had mass celebrated at the parish churches by her chaplains. At last she was so persecuted that she resolved to appeal, in person, to her brother for relief from the interruption his ministers were causing to her worship. She mounted her horse, and attended by a train of ladies and gentlemen, each wearing a black rosary and cross hanging at the side, rode through Fleet street to Westminster. This display was very irritating to the Protestant court, but Mary had a two hours' interview with her brother, with whom she dined, and with his permission returned to Newhall in Essex the next day, after taking a most affectionate leave of him. He treated her very kindly, and made no objection when she assured him "that her soul was God's, and her faith she would not change."

King Edward always felt somewhat hurt because she refused to make long visits at his court; but even had there been no difference in religious opinions, the forms and ceremonies imposed on everybody would have been irksome to one in Mary's poor health.

After the princess had seen her brother she was left [028]undisturbed for awhile, and then, without the slightest warning, Francis Mallet, her head chaplain, was seized and confined in the Tower, with a person in the same cell to watch what he said and did. Mallet was a learned man, and one whom Mary esteemed so highly that when he was dragged off to prison she wrote to her brother and his council, complaining of the injustice; but they took no notice of her whatever, and she continued to have her religious service celebrated by her remaining chaplains.


This went on for a few months, when the king and his council summoned the chief officers of Mary's household before them, among whom was Rochester, her comptroller, and charged them to inform their mistress that she must immediately stop having mass at her court. When they delivered their message, which they did most unwillingly, the princess forbade them to repeat it to her chaplains or to anybody else in her service, and told them that if they failed to obey her they must cease to consider her their mistress; moreover, she would leave the house at once. She was so much excited during this interview that the [029]messengers begged her to take a few days to consider the matter. She did so, but at the end of the specified time she was firm as ever, and wrote her brother humbly but decidedly that she would sacrifice her life rather than what she conceived to be her religious duties.

Edward VI. sent for her officers again, and bade them to use their influence with Mary's whole household in order that she might be prevented by them from continuing the Catholic service. They refused absolutely to interfere, saying that it was against their consciences, and were locked up in the Tower forthwith.

Having failed with Mary's officers, the king now decided to try what his own could accomplish. Accordingly three of them were sent to her, accompanied by a gentleman who was to perform the Protestant service for her, whether she consented or not.

When they informed Mary of their errand she said that her health was poor and she did not wish to be troubled with a long interview, particularly as she had already informed the king by letter of her intention.

They wanted to read her the list of councillors who had voted that she should not have private mass in her house, but she would not hear it, and replied, "Rather than use any other service than that ordained during the life of my father I will lay my head on the block; but I am unworthy to suffer death in so good a cause. And though the good, sweet king have more knowledge than others of his years, yet it is not possible for him to be a judge of all things; for instance, if ships were to be sent to sea, I am sure you would not think him able to decide what should be done, and much less can he, at his age, judge in questions of divinity. As for my priests, they may act as they choose, but none of your new service shall be said in any house of mine, and if any be said in it, I will not tarry in it an hour." [030]When they told her how her officers had refused to return to her with the second message, she was highly gratified, and said, "It was not the wisest of councils that sent her own servants to control her in her own house, for she was least likely to obey those who had always been used to obey her." Then she added, "If they refused to do your message, they are the honestest men I know."

These officers were kept in prison as long as Edward VI. reigned, but Mary remembered and rewarded their fidelity afterwards.

After some more useless urging on the part of the king's councillors, Mary gave them a ring to carry to her brother, kneeling as she did so, and saying, "that she would die his true subject and sister, and obey him in all things except matters of religion;" then she departed into her bedchamber.

But the messengers were not satisfied, so they summoned the chaplains of Mary's household and threatened them with condign punishment if they performed any service but that contained in the Common Prayer Book.

The chaplains objected at first, but afterwards promised to obey. Mary was not baffled yet, for she had hidden away one of them and he could not be found. While search was made for him high and low, the king's messengers waited in the courtyard; and the princess threw open her window, and laughingly called out to them, "I pray you ask the lords of the castle that Rochester may shortly return; for since his departing I keep the accounts myself, and lo, I have learned how many loaves of bread be made of a bushel of wheat! My father and mother never brought me up to brewing and baking! and to be plain with you, I am a-weary of mine office. If my lords will send my officer home again, they will do me a pleasure; otherwise, if they will send him to prison, beshrew me, if he go not to it merrily [031]and with a good will! And I pray God to send you well in your souls, and in your bodies too, for some of you have but weak ones."

The deputation did not care to hear anything more that Mary had to say, but departed without finding the missing chaplain, who, not having made any promise, performed the forbidden service as usual.

A.D. 1552. In 1552 King Edward had both the measles and small-pox, which left him in such a low state of health that he died the following year.

His true condition was kept secret, and while he was dangerously ill a splendid bridal festival was held at Durham House, on the occasion of a double marriage between Lady Jane Grey and Lord Guildford Dudley, and between Katherine Grey, sister to Jane, and the heir of the Earl of Pembroke.

Rather more than a month after this ceremony King Edward expired. He left a will that disinherited his Catholic sister, Mary, and his Protestant sister, Elizabeth, and bestowed the crown on Lady Jane Grey. Then the guard was doubled around the royal apartments, and the late king's council sent a message to Mary that her brother was very ill and desired to see her. She was highly pleased that his affection should have prompted him to send for her, and set out immediately. Before reaching the palace, however, she was met by a mysterious messenger in disguise, who informed her that the king was dead, and that if she fell into the hands of his council she would be imprisoned in the Tower.

Mary was sorely perplexed, for she asked herself:

"Might not this messenger have been sent by an enemy, to draw her into a snare, and induce her to proclaim herself queen while her brother was still alive?" Such an act would have been treason, and would, of course, have led [032]to her ruin. However, after mature reflection, she resolved not to despise the warning, but turned from the London road towards Suffolk. She spent that night at Sawston Hall, in the neighborhood of Cambridge. Mr. Huddleston, who was living there, was a zealous Roman Catholic, and received the princess and her train cheerfully, though he was well aware that he was taking a risk, for all his neighbors were opposed to Mary, and would not hesitate to attack him for extending hospitality to her.

His fears were not without foundation, for when the princess reached the top of the hill early next morning, as she proceeded on her way, she beheld the whole building in which she had passed the night in flames. A party from Cambridge, hearing of her arrival, had set the place on fire, but had they known of her departure they might have seized her bodily. "Let it blaze," said Mary, "I will build Huddleston a better."

She kept her word; for the present Sawston Hall was built entirely at her expense.

She travelled all day, and reached her seat of Kenninghall, in Norfolk, the same night. By that time Edward's death was known, and it was necessary for her to assert her title to the throne at once.

She wrote to the council, expressing her sorrow at her brother's death, and stating that she knew what their intention had been towards her, but assured them that if they would proclaim her in London as their sovereign they should be pardoned.

The following day, July 10, they proclaimed Lady Jane Grey Queen of England.

Mary was determined to maintain her right, and displayed both courage and prudence in the way she set to work.

She decided to leave Kenninghall, because the country



[035]was too open, and the house not strong enough to withstand a siege. Two Norfolk gentlemen brought all their tenantry to her aid, and, mounted on horseback, she proceeded towards Framlingham, in Suffolk, attended by her faithful knights and ladies. They arrived at the castle before night. It was situated on a hill, surrounded by three circles of moats, and everything was in thorough repair for defence, which the valiant knights and armed citizens prepared to undertake. Surrounded by the circling towers of Framlingham Castle, Mary felt herself a sovereign, indeed, and defied her enemies by displaying her standard over the gate tower. She assumed the title of Queen-regnant of England and Ireland.



A.D. 1553.

T The royal standard of England had not floated many hours over the towers of Framlingham Castle before the knights and gentlemen of Suffolk flocked around Queen Mary, bringing their tenants with them, all completely armed. About five days later six ships-of-war sailed along the Suffolk coast towards Yarmouth Roads, with the intention of besieging Mary's castle.

Sir Henry Jerningham, one of the gentlemen who had attended her from Norfolk, happened to be at Yarmouth when the fleet entered the harbor, pretending that they were forced to do so on account of stormy weather. Sir Henry boldly went out in a boat to hail them. The soldiers on board the ships asked him what he wanted. "Your captains," replied the courageous knight; "who are rebels to their lawful Queen Mary."

"If they are," said the men, "we will throw them into the sea, for we are her true subjects."

The captains surrendered themselves, and Sir Henry took possession of the ships.

At the same time Sir Edward Hastings was sent to two counties to raise four thousand men for Queen Jane. As soon as he had secured them, he proclaimed Mary as his rightful queen, and thus placed a large force at her disposal, close to London.

Jane Grey's council, headed by Northumberland, were terrified when they heard of these two events, and still more so when placards were posted on the churches a few [037]days later, stating that Mary had been proclaimed Queen of England and Ireland in every town and city excepting London. A revolution was the result, which ended in the arrest of Northumberland, who was sent to the Tower. Then several of his party hastened to Framlingham to excuse themselves to Mary. Among these were Dr. Sandys, Bishop Ridley, Northampton, and Lord Robert Dudley, all of whom were arrested.

On the last day of July Mary broke up her camp, and began her triumphant march towards London. Her sister Elizabeth, at the head of a cavalcade of nobility and gentry, amounting to a thousand persons, rode out to meet her.

Queen Mary travelled slowly and stopped many times, not arriving at her seat of Wanstead until August 3. From thence she proceeded with great pomp to London.

One of Mary's first acts after she ascended the throne was to forbid the lord mayor to allow any reading of the Scriptures or preaching by the curates unless licensed by her. This was the first blow aimed at the Protestant Church in England by her.

The trial of Northumberland, and others of his party, took place August 18, when eleven were condemned to die, though only the earl and two others were really executed. Then the ambassadors from Rome urged Mary to bring Lady Jane Grey to trial, but she replied that she could not find it in her heart to put her unfortunate kinswoman to death, for she had been merely a tool in the hands of others, and her existence could be no possible danger to herself.

Queen Mary continued to love her sister Elizabeth, took her with her wherever she went, and never dined in public without her. She was extremely kind to her Cousin Courtenay too, and appointed a nobleman to instruct and guide him. [038]About the middle of August she had an interview with the Pope's envoy, and told him that she had concluded a league with the Emperor, and had made up her mind to marry his heir, Prince Philip. She also expressed a wish that her kingdom might be reconciled to Rome, and that Cardinal Pole be sent to her.

Violent struggles were constantly taking place between the two church parties for possession of the various churches and pulpits, many of which were determined by hand-to-hand fights.

Mary was anxious to restore the supremacy of the pope, but Bishop Gardiner was opposed to it, and wanted her to retain her title as head of the English Church. She replied to him: "I have read in Scripture that women are forbidden to speak in the church. Is it then proper that your church should have a dumb head?"

Mary felt the full weight of the responsibility that her father had assumed for himself, and imposed upon his successors by separating the Church of England from the authority of Rome, and feared to undertake it. The party that sided with her was the weakest in numbers of the three that then existed in England. The other two consisted of the Catholics opposed to the pope, established by Henry VIII., which was the strongest, and the Protestant Church of England, established by the regency of Edward VI.

Mary's ministers belonged to the party of Henry VIII., and had aided him in his religious persecutions and his other acts of cruelty, but they had been long used to governing, and she had no other choice than to retain them.

It was Cranmer, aided by Somerset, who, after the death of Henry, established a church on Protestant principles, and then began the intense hatred between the leaders of the two parties. If Lady Jane Grey had succeeded to the [039]throne. Cranmer would have remained in power as Archbishop of Canterbury, and the Protestant religion would undoubtedly have gained the upper hand; but the Catholic Mary deprived him of his office, and put Gardiner in power instead. This bishop changed a prison for the seat of lord-chancellor in an astonishingly short space of time. Then Cranmer was requested to retire to his house at Lambeth and live there privately. The Protestants misunderstood this move, and accused him of joining the ranks of the enemy, whereupon he published an explanation of his creed. The queen's council regarded this as an attack on the government, and sent him to the Tower, where he remained for three years, only to suffer horrible martyrdom at last.

On one point all parties were agreed, and that was disapproval of the queen's engagement to the Prince of Spain. The Emperor Charles, knowing how strongly Cardinal Pole would oppose it, stopped him on his journey to England and detained him in a German convent until after the marriage had taken place.

Philip was only twenty-six years old, and would have preferred a younger wife, but his father thought political power of far greater importance than domestic happiness, so he made Mary a formal offer in writing of his son's hand on the 20th of September, which took place with a great deal of regal splendor, magnificent festivities, etc.

Meantime the queen occupied herself in forming her household, and rewarding the personal friends who had been faithful to her by placing them in high office. She also indulged her fondness for music by selecting the best singers and performers that could be found for her royal chapel.

Four days after the coronation Mary opened her first parliament in state, and Bishop Gardiner as lord-chancellor [040]made an oration showing causes "wherefore the virtuous and mighty Princess Mary, by the grace of God, Queen of England, France, and Ireland, defender of the faith, and head of the church, had summoned her parliament."

They found plenty of work to do in repealing old laws and establishing new ones. Mary retained her power as head of the church of Henry VIII. for a year and a half, but the cruelties of her reign did not begin until she ceased to have that control.

While parliament sat Lady Jane Grey was brought to trial and sentenced to death on a charge of high treason. The same sentence was passed on her husband and Cranmer.

Gardiner's influence over the queen was so powerful that he induced her to burn the Protestant translations of the gospels. Thus, one of Queen Mary's first acts as head of the church was the destruction of her own learned work.

Considerable pains were taken by Mary's enemies to create ill feeling between her and Elizabeth, but without success, and when the young princess went to live at her palace at Ashbridge the two sisters parted in the most friendly manner.

After Elizabeth left, the queen had a severe spell of illness that confined her to her bed for several weeks.

Early in January Count Egmont came to England as ambassador from Spain, to conclude the marriage treaty between Mary and Philip. He was almost torn to pieces when he landed in Kent, so opposed were all the British subjects to this union. But the queen was determined to marry whom she pleased, and after an interview with the count she told him that he might confer with her ministers. [041]On the 14th the articles of the queen's marriage were communicated to the lord-mayor and the city of London.

They agreed that each sovereign was to govern his kingdom separately. None but natives of England were to hold offices in the queen's court or even in the service of her husband. If the queen had a child it was to succeed to her dominions. Her majesty was never to be carried out of her dominions without her special request, and Philip was not to engage England in his father's French wars, nor to appropriate any of the revenue, ships, ammunition, or crown jewels of England.

A.D. 1554. The week after these articles became public three insurrections broke out in different parts of the realm. Two of them were soon suppressed, and their leaders, who had proclaimed Lady Jane Grey queen in every town, fled; but the third was headed by Sir Thomas Wyatt, a young man of twenty-three, who was not so easily managed. He was a Catholic, but when a boy he had accompanied his father on an embassy to Spain, and remembered how nearly that parent had become a victim to the inquisition. This made him fear and detest the Spanish government, and his motive of revolt was to prevent similar tyranny from being established in England, by the marriage of the Queen and Philip of Spain.

Wyatt's rebellion began in Kent, whither Mary sent the aged Duke of Norfolk with her guards and artillery, accompanied by five hundred of the London trained companies of soldiers, commanded by Captain Brett. This person was secretly in league with Wyatt, and actually went over to his side when they met at Rochester. This treasonable act caused the loss of the queen's artillery, and gave such encouragement to the rebels that Wyatt advanced to Deptford with fifteen thousand men. There he dictated his own terms, which were that the queen and [042]her council were to be surrendered into his hands. Mary had too much pluck and determination to listen to such an absurd demand, and prepared for open war.

The whole city was filled with consternation when the desertion of the Duke of Norfolk's forces was known, for every one was aware that the defences of the royal residence at Westminster were weak. All the queen's council, chaplains, and bishops went about with a complete suit of armor underneath their customary clothing, prepared to fight when the time came.

The queen remained calm and collected. She ordered her horse, and attended by her ladies and councillors, rode to London, where she made such an eloquent speech, encouraging the citizens to stand by her and put down the rebellion, that the crowd who filled Guildhall and its court shouted, "God save Queen Mary and the Prince of Spain!".

She was then rowed to Westminster, where she held a council, appointing the Earl of Pembroke general of her troops, then gathering to defend St. James's Palace and Whitehall.

In the meantime Wyatt, finding the city too strongly defended on the river side, decided to move his forces, but before doing so Winchester House was plundered, and Bishop Gardiner's books so torn to pieces as to leave not a single one in his whole library fit for use.

At two o'clock one morning a deserter from the rebels arrived at the palace of Whitehall with the information that the enemy would be at Hyde Park Corner within two hours. The bustle and alarm that ensued may be better imagined then described. Barricades were raised at the points liable to attack, guards were stationed at the queen's chamber-windows and private apartments, and the palace echoed with the sobs and cries of the ladies. But Mary [043]did not lose her presence of mind for a moment, and when her ministers and councillors crowded around her imploring her to take refuge in the Tower, she answered: "That she would set no example of cowardice; and if Pembroke and Clinton proved true to their posts she would not desert hers."

At four o'clock the drums beat to arms, but the rain was pouring in torrents on that cold winter's morning, and delayed the rebels until nine o'clock. Wyatt divided his army into three parts, and a desperate battle was the result of their attack. Queen Mary stood at a window, whence she not only saw the struggle, but spoke brave words to the soldiers who came near enough to hear her, and scouted at any one who approached her with a discouraging report.

Within the palace the utmost terror reigned, the women running from place to place shrieking, banging doors and windows, and keeping up an uproar dreadful to hear.

Just before Pembroke made the final charge, which decided the fortune of the day, the queen actually came out of the palace and stood between two armed men within range of the enemy's shot.

At last Wyatt sank down in the street exhausted and discouraged; he was taken prisoner and locked up in the Tower. Thus ended the rebellion; but the consequence of it was that the queen was beset from all sides with requests for the execution of Lady Jane Grey, who had been the innocent cause of it. Those who demanded this execution said that such scenes of fighting and bloodshed would occur again and again unless the unfortunate Lady Jane were put out of the way. Mary yielded at last, and signed the death warrant of "Guildford Dudley and his wife," to be executed on the 9th of February, two days later. To Dr. Feckenham, the queen's chaplain, fell the duty of preparing poor Lady Jane for this hurried [044]death. He did not succeed in turning her mind from the Protestant faith, but he won her friendship and gratitude, and her last words were of the kindness she had received from him.

When told that she was to die so soon, she said: "That she was prepared to receive her death in any manner it would please the queen to appoint. She shuddered at the thought, as was natural; but her spirit would spring rejoicingly into the eternal light, where she hoped the mercy of God would receive it."

The execution of this lovely, innocent young woman and her husband is a frightful stain on Mary's name, even though she was urged to it in order to prevent further civil wars.

The city presented a ghastly spectacle at that time; for the deserters under Brett were all hung, many of them at their own doors, so that dangling corpses met the eye at every turn of the street.

The prisoners of Wyatt's army, amounting to five hundred, were led to the tilt-yard at Whitehall, with ropes about their necks; then the queen appeared in the gallery above and pronounced the pardon of all. This is a proof that Mary was far more merciful than her ministers, who wanted them brought to trial. She was very lenient in her conduct towards her sister, Elizabeth, too, when Sir Thomas Wyatt's confession gave her notice that the princess was quite as much a competitor for her crown as Lady Jane Grey had been.

She sent her own litter for Elizabeth, who had been ill, and had her brought to Whitehall, where she was appointed a suite of apartments in a secure corner of the palace.

Elizabeth had deceived her sister, and had carried on a secret correspondence with Wyatt and the King of France. Mary knew this, but remained her friend, although she [045]would have no communication with her whatever until she could clear herself of having taken part in any act of treason.

Courtenay was in disgrace, also, because he had corresponded with Wyatt, and was locked up in the Tower. The Spanish ambassador informed Mary that the marriage treaty between her and Prince Philip could not be concluded until both Elizabeth and Courtenay were punished; but the laws of England required an open act of treason to be proved before a person could be sentenced, and Mary was determined to abide by them.

However, as no nobleman could be found willing to undertake the dangerous office of watching Elizabeth, she was imprisoned in the Tower also.

In March Count Egmont returned to England, bringing Mary an engagement ring from Philip, which he presented before her whole court. She received it with thanks, and sent a kind message to the prince, who, she said, had not yet written to her.

Renaud, the Spanish ambassador, kept continually calling her attention to the fact that Philip would not be safe in England until the rebels, especially Elizabeth and Courtenay, had been punished. But Mary put him off with some general remark each time, and thus dismissed the unwelcome subject. She had loved her sister from infancy, and was too constant in her affection to destroy her now. Gardiner was accused of protecting the princess; but it was only because of his friendship for Courtenay, with whom she was implicated in the rebellion, that he refrained from showing enmity towards her. He was really a friend to Courtenay, whose family had been martyrs to Catholicism, and for some time had been his fellow-prisoner in the Tower, where their attachment had been strengthened.

On the 5th of May the queen, having recovered from a [046]very severe spell of illness, dissolved parliament in person, and made such an eloquent address that she was interrupted five or six times by loud shouts of "Long live the queen!" and many persons wept.

A couple of weeks later Elizabeth was removed from the Tower to Woodstock, where she was closely watched by part of the queen's guard, and Courtenay was sent to Fotheringay Castle, also under guard.

The same week a Spanish grandee arrived in England to prepare for the reception of Prince Philip, to whom Queen Mary had written a letter announcing the consent of her parliament to their marriage.

The prince embarked for England July 13, and meantime Mary retired with her council to Richmond Palace to decide what station her husband was to occupy. She considered it her duty to yield implicit obedience; and this notion was the cause of many crimes of which she was guilty later in life.

When she asked whether her name or Philip's should be placed first in the legal documents, Renaud replied, indignantly, "that neither divine nor human laws would suffer his highness to be named last." She next wished to know whether he was to be crowned as king. Her council objected very decidedly, but agreed that the moment he touched English ground he should have a collar and mantle of the Garter worth two thousand pounds.

When the news arrived that the combined fleets of England and Spain, amounting to one hundred and sixty sails, had made the port of Southampton, the queen was at Windsor Castle. Next day she set out with her bridal retinue for Winchester, where she intended her marriage to be celebrated.

Don Philip landed July 20, 1554. A crowd of noblemen received the prince and presented him with the [047]Order of the Garter, which was buckled below the knee, and the blue velvet mantle, fringed with gold and pearls. He mounted a horse presented by his royal bride, and rode straight to church, where he returned thanks for his safe voyage. Then he was conducted to the palace prepared for him.

He was dressed simply in black velvet, his cap being trimmed with gold chains and a small feather. The shape of his head denoted ability; but his complexion was yellowish, his hair thin and sandy, and his eyes small, blue, and weak, which, added to a most disagreeably gloomy expression of countenance, rendered Philip of Spain anything but a handsome man.

The following day being Friday. Don Philip went to mass, and the English nobles who attended him were much pleased with his courteous manners.

On Sunday morning, Ruy Gomez de Silva, Philip's Grand Chamberlain, was sent to Queen Mary with a present of jewels valued at fifty thousand ducats. After mass the prince dined in public, and was waited upon by his newly-appointed English officers. He tried to make himself popular, told his attendants in Latin that he had come to live among them like an Englishman, and praised their ale, which he tasted for the first time in his life.

The bridegroom and his suite mounted their horses and set out in a drenching rain on Monday morning for Winchester. He was escorted by the Earl of Pembroke, with two hundred and fifty cavaliers, a hundred archers, and four thousand spectators, who formed a procession.

Don Philip was dressed as usual in black velvet, but on account of the rain he wore a large red-felt cloak, and a black hat. About a mile from Winchester two noblemen from the queen met the bridegroom, attended by six royal pages, dressed in cloth of gold, and mounted on large Flemish horses. [048]Between six and seven o'clock, the procession reached the city-gate, where the aldermen and mayor presented Don Philip with the keys of the city, which he returned. A volley of artillery greeted him, and twelve men, dressed in red and gold, conducted him to the Dean of Winchester's house, where he lived until after his marriage.

Having changed his dress for a superb black velvet robe bordered with diamonds, he went to the cathedral, and after prayers held his first interview with Queen Mary, who received him very lovingly.

The next afternoon at three o'clock the queen held a grand court, gave Don Philip a public audience, and kissed him in the presence of a large company. Then after they conversed for a while under the canopy of state, the prince was conducted to his residence by a torchlight procession.

The marriage was performed next day. One of the Spanish grandees delivered a solemn oration, in which he announced that the emperor had resigned the kingdom of Naples in favor of his son, so that Mary married a king, not a prince. Then the ceremony proceeded in Latin and English, after which the royal pair returned hand in hand from the high altar and seated themselves until the mass was concluded, when they walked together under the same canopy to the hall where the banquet was spread.

The seats for Queen Mary and her husband were on a dais under a canopy, where their table was laid. Below the dais were various tables for the queen's ladies, the Spanish grandees, their wives, and the English nobility. Bishop Gardiner dined at the royal table. A band of musicians played throughout the meal, and four heralds entered between the first and second courses and pronounced a Latin oration in praise of matrimony.

After the banquet King Philip returned thanks to the council and nobles, and the queen spoke very graciously [049]


[051]in Spanish. At six o'clock the tables were removed and dancing began, which lasted until nine.

The Spanish fleet sailed for Flanders next day, having first landed eighty of the most superb horses that ever were seen for Philip's use. Four of five hundred Spaniards, among whom were a number of fools and buffoons, were permitted to remain in England; but the queen's marriage articles forbade the presence of a large number, so the rest were obliged to return home.

Within a week of their marriage the royal couple gave a sumptuous festival of the Garter at Windsor Castle to celebrate King Philip's admission to that order. Later there was a grand hunt, and a large number of deer were slaughtered.

The usual pageantry attended the public entry into London, which was made with an imposing retinue of English nobles and Spanish grandees. Philip had brought over enough gold and silver to fill ninety-seven chests, each a yard and a quarter long. This treasure was piled on twenty carts and drawn through the city so that everybody might see it before it was taken to the Tower to be coined.

Festivities were kept up until the Duke of Norfolk died, when, as Mary had loved him very much, the whole court was ordered to go into mourning. The queen retired to Hampton Court, where, with her husband, she lived very quietly until the opening of her third parliament, in November. Then she rode in procession, King Philip at her side, to her palace at Whitehall. She was very anxious that the lands her father had taken from the church should be restored, but her council would not consent because they declared she could not support the splendor of her crown if she deprived herself of these sources of revenue. She replied, "that she preferred the peace of her conscience to ten such crowns as England." [052]Her reason for requesting the restoration of the church property was that Cardinal Pole was on his way to visit her, and she desired to be prepared for whatever instructions he might bear from the pope.

Every mark of honor was bestowed on Pole when he arrived. He was rowed up the Thames to Whitehall, Bishop Gardiner received him at the water-gate, King Philip at the principal entrance, and Queen Mary herself at the head of the grand staircase.

On the day appointed for Cardinal Pole's mission to be made known to parliament the queen was so ill that the proceedings took place in the audience chamber at Whitehall. Her majesty was carried to the throne, where King Philip sat at her left hand and Cardinal Pole at the right.

Lord Chancellor Gardiner made the opening address, introducing the cardinal, who spoke eloquently of his own sufferings and exile, and pleaded the cause of the Roman Catholics and of the queen with such good effect that a petition for a reconciliation with the pope was prepared on the spot, and duly signed by each of the peers.

This was presented to the royal couple next day, who, in the presence of parliament, delivered the document into the hands of the Roman ambassador, who thereupon solemnly pronounced absolution and benediction on all present.

During this ceremony Mary's illness returned; but she was better by Christmas, which was celebrated with unusual splendor on account of the royal marriage and of the recent reconciliation to Rome. The Princess Elizabeth was enjoying the most friendly relations with her sister at that period, and took part in the festivities. She sat beside the queen at the state supper which was given in the great hall of Westminster, and attended by an assembly of English, Flemish, and Spanish nobles. [053]The queen's illness had rendered her incapable of governing, so she can scarcely be held accountable for the cruel executions that took place, though she certainly took on measures to prevent them. Philip was the real sovereign, and viewed the burning of the two or three hundred martyrs of the Protestant Church with remarkable complacency.


Fortunately for Bishop Coverdale, the translator of the English Bible, the King of Denmark wrote Queen Mary a [054]letter claiming him for a subject, otherwise he too would have died at the stake.

A.D. 1555. The sudden and unexpected abdication of the Emperor Charles V. called King Philip to Spain to receive the sceptre, and before he left Queen Mary removed from Hampton Court to Greenwich Palace. But whether in England or out of it, Philip was certainly ruler so long as his wife lived, and minute accounts of all church and state affairs were submitted to him during his absence. No power was legally given to him by parliament, but he coolly took it, and gave important orders without so much as consulting the queen.

When not under her husband's bad influence Mary restored some wise laws, and the fact that insurrections ceased in her reign proves that the poor were not so destitute as they had been during the lives of her father and brother.

Queen Mary was so ill throughout the rest of the year 1555 that she remained quietly at Greenwich, sometimes making excursions to the country, when she would enter the cottages of the poor and relieve their wants without revealing her identity. This was during Philip's absence; he returned for a short time in 1557 for the purpose of trying to involve England in a war with France. But Mary's finances were at a low ebb, and she did not feel justified in involving her kingdom in the expenses of a war. Philip's army was mustering near Calais, and in order to gratify him with as little cost as possible, she pardoned all the rebels in her prisons on condition that they would join it also. She raised money by borrowing small sums from those of her citizens who had any to spare, and paying them an enormous interest. Philip left England in the summer and never saw his wife again. He succeeded in taking possession of Calais, but the French gained it back a few months later. [055]Queen Mary was in a most feeble condition when the Scotch made an invasion in the north of England, nevertheless she expressed her determination to head her army in person. She had all the energy required for such an exploit, but was soon convinced that her bodily health forbade it. Her troops, under Northumberland and Westmoreland, repulsed the Scotch and gained a decided victory over them.

The rest of Queen Mary's life was filled with schemes for the recovery of Calais, a town highly prized by the English, because it was such an excellent spot for them to land whenever they desired to invade France. So many disputes were the result that, in her perplexity, Mary declared, "that should she die Calais would be found written upon her heart if her breast were opened."

A.D. 1558. Her death was nearer than she suspected, for she contracted a malarial fever in the autumn of 1558, from which she did not recover. King Philip sent a message and a ring by Count de Feria when he heard of his wife's illness, and proposed that she should take measures for the recognition of her sister Elizabeth as her successor. Mary complied; and no sooner had she done so than her whole court flocked to Hatfield, anxious to prove their devotion to the princess who was soon to become their sovereign.

While the last services of the church were being performed for her, on the morning of November 17, Queen Mary raised her eyes to heaven and expired.

Her devoted and early friend, Cardinal Pole, died two days later.

The queen's body was embalmed, and, after lying in state for a month, was interred at Westminster Abbey, on the north side of Henry VIIth's Chapel. [056]


(A.D. 1533-1603.)

Elizabeth was one of the most learned and distinguished queens that ever lived, and there is no other about whom so many celebrated authors have written.

A.D. 1533. She was the daughter of Henry VIII. and Anne Boleyn, who were living at Greenwich Palace at the time of her birth. When she was four days old her christening was conducted with great pomp and ceremony,—the lord mayor, all the aldermen and council of the city of London, besides a great number of knights and lords, being present.

Cranmer, the Archbishop of Canterbury, stood godfather on that occasion, the Duchess of Norfolk and the Marchioness of Dorset being godmothers. The gifts to the little princess consisted of costly gold cups, bowls, and salvers.

Elizabeth did not remain with her parents; for the royal nursery was at Hunsdon, where, surrounded by every comfort and luxury that an infant could possibly need, she was lovingly tended by Lady Margaret Bryan. This lady had also taken charge of the Princess Mary, and had proved herself to be a woman of such rare sense and excellent qualities that she was eminently fitted for her post as superintendent of the household. While Anne Boleyn lived King Henry fondled and petted her little daughter; but after her head was cut off and her place supplied by another.[057]




She was just four years of age, and the Earl of Hertford carried her in his arms to the font; but when the procession left the chapel the two Princesses, Mary and Elizabeth, walked out hand in hand, their trains being supported by noble ladies, who followed close behind.

Fortunately for Elizabeth her early youth was passed in seclusion, which afforded opportunity for the cultivation of her mind, and thus prepared her for the exalted position she was to occupy later. [059]other wife, his petting was succeeded by neglect and even cruelty, that must have been a sore trial to the child as well as to faithful Lady Bryan.

A.D. 1537. Elizabeth was seen in public for the first time when her little brother, Edward VI., was christened. [060]She and Prince Edward were warmly attached to each other, and he, at least, was never happier than while they were permitted to live together. It was she who gave him his earliest instruction in walking and talking, and it was to her that he turned for comfort in all his childish sorrows.

A.D. 1539. When only six years of age Elizabeth presented her little brother with a shirt made entirely by her own hands; which proves that she must have learned to handle her needle at a very early age.

As they grew older these children played and studied together, and Edward relied for advice on "his sweetest sister," as he loved to call her, until he was separated from her. It was their custom to rise at daylight and devote a couple of hours to religious exercises and the reading of Scripture. After breakfast they studied languages, science, and the works of the best authors; then Edward would seek exercise in the open air, while his sister occupied herself with her music or needlework.

Edward's first real source of grief was his separation from this beloved sister when he ascended the throne. It was his desire to have her with him even then; but his selfish councillors, being jealous of any outside influence, interposed to prevent it.

His devotion to Elizabeth lasted until death: she had been his earliest playmate, and no difference in religious views had ever risen to interfere with the congeniality that marked their intercourse. It was different with Mary, who was a rigid Roman Catholic, and always opposed the Protestant tendencies of her brother and sister.

When Henry VIII. married Anne of Cleves, Elizabeth wrote her stepmother a most dutiful, affectionate letter, in which she expressed desire to make her acquaintance. An opportunity soon offered, when the queen was so charmed [061]with the wit and beauty of the young princess that at the time of her divorce she requested that they might be permitted the interchange of visits, which was granted.

The next stepmother, Katherine Howard, loved Elizabeth too, and treated her with marked tenderness and consideration, giving her the place of honor near the throne at all public entertainments.

With a view to strengthening the friendly relations between England and other countries, King Henry tried at various times to form an alliance for his daughter with several powerful princes; but fortunately for her all his plans fell through.

Under the guidance of her fourth stepmother, Katherine Parr, who was a very learned woman, Elizabeth pursued her studies uninterrupted by any thought of matrimony, which at so early an age, and planned for state purposes, must have proved a misfortune.

She lived in retirement with her father's widow for a year after his death; and though she set up an independent establishment of her own when she was fifteen years old, she and Katherine Parr continued to be fast friends as long as that lady lived.

A.D. 1545. Even at that early age, Elizabeth was well-informed in geography, architecture, mathematics, and astronomy, besides being an accomplished Latin and Greek scholar. She spoke and wrote French, Italian, Spanish, and Flemish; but her favorite study was history, to which she devoted three hours a day.

A.D. 1553. She displayed no small amount of shrewdness when her brother died, which was remarkable in so young a woman. Edward's illness had been concealed from his sisters by the wily statesmen who kept strict guard over him, and who had used every effort to foster the ill-feeling that existed between him and his relations. As [062]soon as his death occured they wrote Mary and Elizabeth that he was seriously ill, and desired their presence at his bedside. The object was to secure the two princesses, lock them up in prison, and proclaim Lady Jane Grey successor to the crown of England; but Elizabeth, suspecting some plot, took not the slightest notice of the letters. When the Duke of Northumberland offered her a liberal sum of money, besides a tract of land, providing she would resign her right of succession in favor of Lady Jane Grey, she replied, "that an agreement must first be made with her elder sister, during whose life she had no right nor title to resign."

It was not without a difficult struggle that Mary got possession of the crown, and while it was going on Elizabeth pretended to be desperately ill and remained quietly at home. No sooner was it assured than she recovered and went in state, at the head of a large retinue, to welcome the new queen. Then the two sisters rode side by side, in grand procession through London, and were, apparently, on the best of terms. Nobody who witnessed that procession could fail to observe the contrast between the two royal ladies. Poor Mary, whose life had thus far been one of sadness, anxiety, and ill-health, sat on her horse almost bent double, and looking like a woman of middle age, although she was only twenty. Elizabeth, on the other hand, whose fine, majestic form and gracious manners won every heart as she smilingly bowed to the right and left, looked every inch a queen, and Mary sank into insignificance by her side. Her face, though not handsome, was pleasing, and her dark eyes shone with gratification at the attention she attracted. Throughout her life Elizabeth's delicate, well-formed hands were a source of pride to her, and she never lost an opportunity of displaying them to the best advantage. [063]Within a month the affection that the two sisters entertained for each other was seriously impaired on account of their difference in religion, which created a great deal of ill-feeling. Elizabeth refused to attend mass, which, though gratifying to the Protestants, deeply grieved and offended Mary.

The state councillors regarded Elizabeth's conduct in this matter as a mark of disrespect, and wanted to have her arrested; but the queen refused at first to take any extreme measures, and contented herself by turns with threats and persuasion.

Elizabeth remained firm in her desire to appear as the heroine of the Reformers, though for the sake of policy she consented to read several religious books recommended by the queen, and even accompanied her once or twice to church. As a reward Mary bestowed many favors on the princess, and placed her in prominent positions on state occasions. This was just what Elizabeth sought; for she knew the importance of keeping herself before the nation, and never lost an opportunity of appearing as Mary's successor. Her manners were so gracious that she became a great favorite among the court ladies, and thus excited her sister's jealousy to such a degree that when a charge of treason was brought against her Mary lent a willing ear to it. Elizabeth was able to prove her innocence; but she felt so indignant at having been suspected that she requested permission to retire to the country and thus rid herself of court intrigue.

She took up her abode in her own house at Ashbridge; but even there she was not left in peace, for the queen was anxious to have her marry the Spanish Prince, Philibert of Savoy, and the King of France was constantly making her offers of protection and aid if she would only assert her claim to the throne. He even proceeded so far as to advise [064]her to go to France, which would have been a most unwise move on her part, and wrote her letters in a secret language. This had the effect of rendering her position extremely critical; but fortunately Elizabeth's judgment was so excellent that she knew how to save herself from the friends who would unintentionally have done her more harm, had she taken their advice, than her enemies.

A.D. 1554. She was recalled to court at the time of the insurrection under Wyatt, because she and Courtenay were accused of having urged it with a view to getting the Protestant party into power. She was quite ill when the summons reached her, but obeyed it as soon as possible, and chanced to arrive in London on the very day of the execution of Lady Jane Grey. No doubt she trembled for the safety of her own head while the queen was daily signing the death-warrants of those who really had turned against her or appeared to have done so. The public mind was in such a state of excitement on account of the numerous executions that were taking place, that many wept as the young princess rode through the streets attended by a guard of honor, consisting of a hundred gentlemen, for they supposed that she was being led to the block. Dressed in a robe of pure white, Elizabeth sat up in a litter and looked around with a proud, lofty air. Her youthful appearance touched many a heart; but not one arm or voice, in all the multitude that had assembled to gaze upon her, was raised in her defence.

With a retinue of six of her ladies, two gentlemen, and four servants, she was lodged in a wing of Westminster Palace; and although she knew that the privy council were debating as to whether she should be executed or no, she was unable to get sight of her sister or to plead her cause in any way.



[067]Many charges were brought against the princess, but Mary's conscience forbade the shedding of her sister's blood; so, after a few weeks' deliberation, she shut her up in the Tower.

Elizabeth's letters to the queen, asserting her innocence, were unnoticed. She was forbidden to use English prayer-books, and compelled to hear mass. Two of her ladies who objected to this were dismissed by the queen's orders and replaced by Catholics. At first she was kept in close confinement, but after a while her health began to suffer, and she was permitted to take exercise in a little enclosed garden.

The officers and servants about the prison were respectful and attentive to the royal lady, and their children would bring her flowers from time to time. Her love of children was great throughout her whole life, and their ready sympathy during her imprisonment was most pleasing to her.

One day a little four-year-old child picked up a bunch of keys and carried them to her in the garden, saying:

"I have brought you the keys now, so you need not always stay here. You can unlock the gates and go out whenever you please."

Another child, the son of one of the soldiers, received so many tokens of reward from the royal prisoner in return for the bouquets he carried her, that he was, before long, suspected of acting as messenger between her and her fellow-prisoners, Courtenay and Lord Robert Dudley. Such may not have been the case; but the boy was prevented from again seeing the princess, and his father was severely reprimanded.

Elizabeth could not have regarded Lord Robert Dudley in the light of a friend when she was sent to the Tower, because she knew that he had favored Lady Jane Grey's cause; therefore, the fact that he was in her good graces [068]immediately upon her accession to the throne, proves that he must, in the interval, have found some means of seeking and obtaining her pardon. Whether or no notes and messages passed between them within the walls of the gloomy Tower can only be conjectured.

At the expiration of a couple of months, Elizabeth was removed to Woodstock, where her life was less painful, though she was never allowed to forget that she was a prisoner under close surveillance. A band of armed men kept watch around the walls of the palace night and day, and she was allowed no visitors.

She passed many hours at her needlework, and composed several pieces of poetry, which are scarcely worthy of being repeated. But her time hung heavily on her hands, and she was tortured by constant dread of her life being in danger. One day when sitting in her garden she heard a milkmaid merrily singing at her work, and said with a weary sigh: "Ah! her case is better, and her life is happier than mine; would I were a milkmaid, too!"

With the hope of softening her sister's heart towards her, Elizabeth attended mass, went to confession, and, with the advice of Cardinal Pole, even proclaimed herself a Roman Catholic. She displayed a great deal of self-possession, when the queen, who still doubted her sincerity, notwithstanding her professions of religion, caused her to be questioned as to her opinion of a real Saviour in the sacrament of the Lord's Supper. She hesitated for only one moment, then replied in these extempore lines:—

"Christ was the word that spake it;

He took the bread and brake it,

And what his word did make it,

That I believe, and take it."

Elizabeth's policy had the desired effect, and to her inexpressible delight she was invited to Hampton Court [069]to spend the Christmas holidays with her sister, the queen. But a little disappointment awaited her on her arrival there; for much to her surprise she was still destined to be treated as a prisoner, and it was a whole fortnight before any notice was taken of her being at the palace, or before any one was admitted to visit her.

A.D. 1555. She kept constantly wondering what this could mean, but had no opportunity of finding out. Quite unexpectedly one night she was summoned to the presence of the queen. Trembling with fear, and as to her fate, she was conducted by torchlight to the royal apartments. On entering she threw herself at Mary's feet and declared that she was a most true and loyal subject. In fact, she conducted herself throughout the interview in so submissive a manner, that at its close she was dismissed with tokens of affection and a beautiful ring. After that she was relieved of the presence of the guards and keepers and treated with marked respect by the principal personages of the realm.

Although Philip, Mary's husband, could never quite forgive Elizabeth because she had refused to marry his friend, Philibert of Savoy, he was extremely kind to her, and did his part towards rendering the holidays a delightful season of enjoyment for her. At one of the grand pageants the young princess wore a rich white satin dress, embroidered all over in large pearls; and when she made her appearance in the hall, both Cardinal Pole and the king kneeled down and kissed her hand.

A.D. 1556. The following autumn she went to live at Hatfield, where, surrounded by her old, attached friends, she established her household to her own liking. Her learned instructor, Roger Ascham, was one of the inmates, and under his guidance Elizabeth resumed her study of classical literature.

A.D. 1557. [070]In February the queen made her a visit, and was entertained in a sumptuous manner. There were daily amusements consisting of performances on the virginals, chorus singing, acting, and sumptuous banquets, as well as hunting parties, in which both the royal ladies took part.


During the next summer the queen invited Elizabeth to an entertainment at Richmond. She was conveyed there in her majesty's own barge, which was richly decorated with garlands of artificial flowers, and covered with a green silk canopy embroidered in gold. Four ladies accompanied [071]her, and six boats, containing her retinue, followed. The queen received her in a magnificent pavilion in her garden. This pavilion was made in the form of a castle and covered with purple velvet and cloth of gold, on which appeared the Spanish coat of arms, in honor of King Philip. A fine feast was served to the royal ladies, after which a number of minstrels performed. The next day Elizabeth returned to Hatfield, where she remained quietly until the following November, when Queen Mary died, and she was proclaimed her successor.

A.D. 1558. Heralds, stationed at the grand door of Westminster Palace, as well as at other public places, announced the new sovereign with the sound of trumpets, while bells were rung, bonfires lighted, and ale and wine generously dealt out to the populace by the wealthy citizens.

All exhibitions of mourning for the dead queen were quickly replaced by celebrations in honor of the living one, whose accession was regarded with the keenest interest by the whole nation.

Elizabeth's first public act, after receiving the privy council, was to appoint her principal secretary of state. Her choice was Sir William Cecil, who not only proved himself a great statesman, but remained Elizabeth's staunch friend to the day of his death.

On the twenty-eighth day of November the new queen entered the city of London, attended by a train of about a thousand nobles, knights, gentlemen, and ladies, and proceeded to the Charter-house. Next, in accordance with an ancient custom, she proceeded to the Tower. On that occasion the streets through which she passed were spread with fine gravel. The public buildings were hung with rich tapestry, and guns were fired at regular intervals. The queen was mounted on her palfry, richly attired in purple [072]velvet: a vast concourse of people had gathered to greet her, and as she approached, preceded by her heralds and great officers, joyful shouts and acclamations filled the air, while she gracefully returned the salutations of even the humblest of her subjects.

At various points the procession halted while the queen was welcomed with music, speeches, or a chorus of children. She seemed pleased with everything, replied to the addresses, noticed everybody, and frankly expressed her gratification at the honors that were showered upon her. Her early misfortunes had taught her a wholesome lesson, and in adversity she had learned the worth of Wordsworth's immortal words:—

"Of friends, however humble, scorn not one."

Attended by Lord Robert Dudley, who had already been appointed to the lofty position of master of the house, Elizabeth entered the Tower, once her dungeon, now her palace, and proceeded straight to her former prison apartment, where falling on her knees she offered up a loud, fervent prayer of thanksgiving.

While passing through the court of the Tower she turned to those near her, and said: "Some have fallen from being princes in this land to be prisoners in this place; I am raised from being a prisoner in this place to be prince of this land, so I must bear myself thankful to God and merciful to men."

After a few days in the Tower the queen went to Somerset House for a fortnight, and then to the palace of Westminster, where she spent Christmas.

The next matter of importance that occupied Elizabeth's attention was her coronation, for which preparations were already going forward in London. It seems strange that so learned a woman as Queen Elizabeth should have been [073]superstitious, but such was indeed the case, and she scarcely ever took an important step without previously consulting Doctor Dee, the well-known conjuror.

Consequently Robert Dudley was sent to request this humbug to appoint a lucky day for the coronation. After consulting the stars and other heavenly bodies he decided upon Sunday, January 15.

All the favorite summer residences of the Tudor princes stood on the banks of the Thames. Therefore, as the streets of London were narrow and badly paved, it was the custom of the court to pass from one to the other by water. The nobility owned their own barges, and the rowers wore liveries distinguished by the crests and badges of their employers.

Three days before the solemn and imposing coronation ceremony was to take place, a grand procession of boats was arranged for the purpose of conducting her majesty from Westminster to the royal apartments in the Tower.

Rich tapestries, hangings of silk and velvet, gorgeously embroidered in gold and silver, hung from the balconies of the houses all along the route, while gay banners, pennons, and flags floated from the roofs. All the public and private barges were drawn forth in grand array, festooned with garlands of flowers and bright new flags. Bands of music accompanied the procession, and cannons were fired during its entire progress.

On the 14th the queen's passage through the city took place. She appeared in a superb chariot, preceded by trumpeters and heralds in armor, and drawn by richly caparisoned horses. A retinue of lords and ladies followed on horseback, the latter wearing crimson velvet habits. The gentlemen wore gowns of velvet or satin richly trimmed with fur or gold lace, costly gold chains, and caps or hoods [074]of material to match the gown, adorned with feathers and jewels.

Elizabeth did not sit quietly back in her chariot as other sovereigns did; she kept constantly acting—making speeches, smiling, pressing her hand to her heart, and raising her eyes to heaven as occasion seemed to demand. This peculiar behavior delighted the populace, who showered their sovereign with nosegays and rent the air with shouts and cheers. Several times she stopped the procession to say a few pleasant words to some particularly poor-looking individual, and a branch of rosemary presented by a shabbily-dressed old woman occupied a prominent place in the royal chariot until its arrival at Westminster.

By such trifling actions Elizabeth won the hearts of even the lowest of her subjects. It was her policy to please, and no woman was ever more perfect in the art. She listened with profound attention to the poems and speeches that accompanied the pageants arranged at different points along Cheapside, where every house was decorated and rich carpets covered the path. The pageants were similar to the triumphal arches of the present day. They were erected of wood, and had appropriate sentences in Latin and English inscribed upon them. At each one a child was stationed to explain to the queen in English verse the meaning of the device.

One pageant represented an allegory of Time and Truth. "Who is that old man with the scythe and hour-glass?" asked Elizabeth. "Time," was the reply. "Time has brought me here," she returned. Truth held a Bible which, at the recital of a particular part of the verse, was let down by a silken cord into the queen's chariot. She received the volume with both hands, and reverently pressed it to her heart and lips, declaring in a loud tone that she thanked the city more for that gift than any other, and [075]added that she would read it diligently. Equal attention was bestowed on the other pageants; and just as she passed through Temple Bar Elizabeth stood up, and, facing the crowd, exclaimed in farewell: "Be ye well assured, I will stand your good queen."

The shouts that arose in response sounded above the report of the guns.

Next morning the queen appeared at Westminster, attired in a mantle of crimson velvet, lined and trimmed with ermine and fastened with cords, tassels, and buttons of silk and gold. Her jacket and train were also of crimson velvet, and gold lace adorned her head-dress. She wore no jewels, and her coronation was remarkable for its simplicity. The Episcopal bishop, Oglethorpe, performed the ceremony, but he followed the Roman Catholic ritual without the slightest change. Though Elizabeth was a Protestant, she raised no objection to the Catholic service until the following Christmas, when just at the moment for making her offerings she arose abruptly, and, followed by her whole retinue, left the chapel. Had any objection been made to this proceeding she would have pleaded sudden illness, but finding it universally approved, she ordered the service to be for the future performed in English, which was never done in the Catholic church.

The learned Doctor Parker was appointed Archbishop of Canterbury, and it was through his influence that the Church of England was established nearly in its present state.

One of the queen's earliest acts was to send friendly messages to all the Protestant princes of Europe; at the same time she assured the pope that she would not interfere with the religious views of any of her subjects. Thus she hoped to conciliate both parties. As a rule, she was gracious to her former persecutors; but to one member of [076]Queen Mary's household who had been impertinent to her, and who hastened to throw himself at her feet as soon as she was raised to power, she said: "Fear not; we are of the nature of the lion, and cannot descend to the destruction of mice and such small beasts."

Queen Elizabeth made an enemy of Philip, her sister's widower, by refusing his hand when she was twenty-five years of age; but in doing so she announced her determination never to marry at all.

Her popularity increased to such an extent that the lower classes idolized her, and the nobles and gentlemen of her realm were thirsting for an opportunity to risk their lives in her service.

She appeared in public very frequently, and when her rowing parties took place crowds flocked to the river banks to welcome her with music and fireworks. When she went to Greenwich for the summer all sorts of exhibitions were planned to furnish an excuse for Londoners to flock there.

Much of Elizabeth's popularity was due to the fact that she spared no pains to render the national holidays enjoyable to every class of her subjects. Though she, too, enjoyed the festivities with all the zest of a young, sprightly, healthy woman, her pleasure was not by any means unalloyed.

One serious cause of anxiety was the knowledge that Henry II. of France was constantly trying to place his daughter-in-law, Mary Stuart, on the throne of England, and there was a powerful Catholic party who felt her claim to be a just one. But death soon put an end to the king's interference, and calmed Elizabeth's fears from that source.

Then Mary Stuart's husband, Francis II., threatened to assert her rights; but he was too sickly and insignificant a [077]person to take the stand his father had done, and death removed him also out of the way.

So many suitors sought the young queen's hand that we are reminded of what Shakspeare says of Portia in "The Merchant of Venice": "While we shut the gate on a wooer, another knocks at the door."

A.D 1559. Elizabeth coquetted with them, accepted their numerous and costly presents, made use of them to further her plans or carry some point with her council, but never with the slightest intention of marrying any one of them.

When at last Philip II. married she pretended to feel dreadfully mortified, and told the Spanish ambassador "that his king was very inconstant, since he could not wait four short months to see whether she would change her mind."

The person most favored by Queen Elizabeth at that time was Robert Dudley, who afterwards became Earl of Leicester, and much jealousy was aroused among the members of the council on account of it. Dudley was married to Amy Robsart, a beautiful and wealthy heiress, who never appeared at court. For some reason or other she resided in a solitary country mansion, where she died quite suddenly. It was given out that an accidental fall had caused it, but there were strong suspicions of murder, and Robert Dudley was not held entirely innocent of it. However, no inquiry was instituted, and the queen would hear no complaints of her favorite. She took occasion to remark publicly that as Dudley was at the palace when his wife died she was convinced of his innocence.

A.D. 1560. In 1560 Mistress Montague, her majesty's silk woman, presented her with a pair of knitted silk stockings, which pleased her so much that she laid aside forever the cloth kind she had always worn. [078]A decided change had taken place in the queen's wardrobe, for in her youth she was noted for the extreme simplicity of her attire; but no sooner did she ascend the throne than she gave full swing to her vanity, and purchased more finery than any Queen of England had ever done. She had three thousand dresses and eighty wigs of different styles and colors. She was positively loaded down with pearls, jewels, velvets, furs, and embroidery. Her costumes were neither pretty nor tasteful; for their object seemed to be nothing but a display of gaudy colors and showy jewelry.

Elizabeth's court was conducted with great magnificence, and those whose duty it was to supply the royal household were often guilty of robbing and imposing upon the farmers. Complaints were made to her majesty, who always lent a willing ear to her subjects, and invariably compensated them for their loss. One day, when she was walking in the fields with her lords and ladies, a sturdy countryman placed himself in her path, and as she approached called out in a rude, coarse tone: "Which is the queen?" She turned towards him with an encouraging smile; he repeated the question, looking from one lady to another, until Elizabeth stepped forward and said: "I am thy queen; what wouldst thou have with me?"

"You!" exclaimed the man with a look of surprise and admiration. "You are one of the rarest women I ever saw, and can eat no more than my daughter Madge, who is thought the finest lass in our parish, though short of you; but the Queen Elizabeth I look for devours so many of my hens, ducks, and capons that I am not able to live."

Now Elizabeth was always indulgent to any one who paid her compliments, but upon inquiry she found this man to be both unjust and dishonest, so she had him severely punished.



[081]Among the preparations for Easter it was the queen's custom to wash the feet of twenty poor women, to each of whom she gave a new gown and the white cup from which she had drank to them. The same afternoon she appeared in St. James's Park and distributed two thousand silver coins, valued at eight pence each, among as many poor men, women, and children. These public acts of charity endeared the sovereign to her people, for they were always the occasion of a holiday, and gave the humblest citizens an opportunity of speaking to her. The coins thus bestowed were worn by the recipients as precious amulets, and handed down in their families as heirlooms in memory of the gracious queen.

Nobody ever visited the palace on any errand whatsoever without being invited, according to his station in life, to partake of a meal at one of the tables. No wonder that Elizabeth was a popular sovereign, and that her's was called a "golden reign."

In 1560, at great loss to her treasury, she called in all the base coin that Henry VIII. had caused to be made, and returned to every person the full value in new sterling silver and gold.

A.D. 1561. Late in the summer of 1561 Elizabeth made a journey through her kingdom, and was received with public rejoicings and displays wherever she went. These progresses, as they were called, occurred several times during Elizabeth's reign, when she was magnificently entertained at the various mansions of the nobles whom she honored with her visit.

Queen Elizabeth was so skilled in the art of ruling that she knew a country was never so sure of enjoying the blessing of peace as when prepared for war, so she took pains to provide her's with ample means of defence. She gave orders for gunpowder that had been purchased in other [082]countries to be manufactured in England. Engineers and arsenals were furnished for all the fortified towns along the coast and the Scottish borders; forts were built, garrisons increased, and the wages of sailors and soldiers doubled. So many ships-of-war were built, and the navy was increased to such an extent, that after a reign of four years England could command a fleet with twenty thousand men at arms. Strangers called Elizabeth "Queen of the Sea;" her own subjects proudly styled her the restorer of naval glory. [083]


A.D. 1562.

Queen Elizabeth either forgot her promise to the pope, that she would not interfere with the religion of her subjects, or she was unmindful of it, for many were persecuted on account of their adherence to Catholicism. All emblems and pictures of the Catholic church were abolished; and as the English artists were not permitted to copy the sacred subjects selected by the Spanish, Italian, and Flemish masters, pictorial art came to a standstill in England.

It was not on account of religion that the Countess of Lenox, one of the queen's nearest relations, was arrested and thrown into prison. She was charged with treason and witchcraft: but the real offence was a secret correspondence with her niece, the Queen of Scots, whom Elizabeth hated. She made no secret of this hatred, and was heard to ask "how it was possible for her to love any one whose interest it was to see her dead." Nevertheless, she would never acknowledge Mary's right to the throne. The fact is, that each of these queens would lavish affectionate terms on the other if the interest or caprice of the moment demanded it; but each was jealous and suspicious of the other, and each hated the other in the inmost recesses of her heart. Elizabeth was often urged to appoint a successor in the event of her death, and if the name of Mary was mentioned on such an occasion it threw her into a transport of rage.

[084]At last a meeting was planned between the two queens, with the hope of establishing a better state of feeling; but the defeat of her army in France under Warwick gave Elizabeth an excuse for postponing the interview. This defeat was a sore trial to the queen, and besides the plague had killed off a great number of the soldiers. They brought the disease home with them, and during the following year twenty thousand people died of it in London alone.

A.D. 1563. Meanwhile Lady Lenox had been released from prison, and was secretly trying to make up a match between Mary Stuart and Lord Henry Darnley. It was Mary's desire to conciliate Queen Elizabeth just then, so she sent Sir James Melville to consult her about an offer of marriage to herself.

While this ambassador was at court Queen Elizabeth appeared in a different costume each day, and was pleased when he said that he preferred the Italian style for her because it displayed her yellow curls to advantage.

She asked him which was the more beautiful, she or Mary Stuart.

"You are the handsomest queen in England," he replied, "and ours the handsomest queen in Scotland."

"Which of us is the taller?" asked Elizabeth.

"Our queen," said Melville.

"Then she is over-tall," returned Elizabeth; "for I am neither too tall nor too short."

She next asked how Queen Mary passed her time.

"When I left Scotland, she had just come from a Highland hunt," answered the ambassador; "but when she has leisure, she reads, and sometimes plays on the lute and the virginals."

"Does she play well?" asked Elizabeth.

"Reasonably well for a queen," was the reply. [085]Elizabeth had a love for flattery that could never be satisfied; the most fulsome compliments were always acceptable, and those who desired favors at her hands knew the importance of tickling her vanity. It made her unhappy to suspect that any one could think Mary Stuart, of all women, in any particular superior to herself. So on the evening after the interview with Lord Melville she managed to perform on the virginals, when she knew that he was within hearing. It had the desired effect; for the ambassador raised the drawing-room curtains to see who the player was, and delighted the heart of Elizabeth by assuring her that she was a much better musician than his queen.

Fond as Elizabeth was of popularity she never permitted any one to interfere with her. Once when Leicester attempted to express an opinion contrary to her's regarding some state matter, she flew into a passion, and said: "I will have here but one mistress and no master."

This so humiliated the favorite, who had been treated like a spoiled child for several years, that he absented himself from court as much as possible, and finally requested that he might be sent on a diplomatic mission to France. But Elizabeth would not comply. She told him that it would be no great honor to the King of France, were she to send him her groom; then turning to the French ambassador, who was present, she laughingly added, "I cannot live without seeing him every day; he is like my lap-dog: so soon as he is seen any where they say I am near at hand, and wherever I am seen he is expected."

Elizabeth was generally kind and grateful to those who had treated her well in her youth; but her cruelty towards Doctor Heath, Archbishop of York, is an exception. The doctor had been of real service to her; but so determined was she to brook no opposition, that when he refused to [086]acknowledge her supremacy over the church, she had him shut up in the Tower, and even put to torture, although he was eighty years of age at the time.

Temper often got the better of this illustrious queen; and when such was the case she made coarse, rude speeches to her attendants as well as members of parliament, which she regretted in calmer moments.

A.D. 1564. When parliament urged her to marry she answered, "That if they would attend to their own business she would perform her's." Such discourteous speeches won for her a reprimand, which put her in such a rage that she refused to give satisfaction upon any question that was laid before her. Later she made a conciliatory speech and said: "That her successor might perhaps be more wise and learned than she, but one more careful of the country's weal they could not have." She bade them "beware how they again tried their sovereign's patience as they had done."

Dr. Dee, the conjuror, spent much time at court, and received many favors from the queen, who even condescended to visit him at his own house. He had a mirror in which he pretended to read the queen's destiny, and showed her his laboratory where he was concocting an elixir of life for her special use. Elizabeth believed in him, granted him her protection, and finally appointed him Chancellor of St. Paul's Cathedral. He spent many years at his foolish trickery, but it is certain that he produced no compound either for rejuvenating the queen or for prolonging her life.

A.D. 1567. In 1567 Lord Darnley, who had become Queen Mary's husband, was mysteriously murdered. Lord Bothwell, who was known to be in love with Mary, was accused of the crime, in which there was strong grounds for suspicion that Mary herself assisted. Elizabeth took



[089]pains to express no opinion about this matter; but she, no doubt, believed, as all Europe did, in Mary's guilt. She took it upon herself to announce to the Countess of Lenox the fearful catastrophe that had befallen her son, and did so in a considerate and sympathetic manner, which formed a contrast to her former cruelty.

Bothwell was tried, but his guilt could not be proved, and three months after Lord Darnley's death he and Mary Stuart were married. This shameful conduct horrified the Scottish people, and they rose in arms against their queen.

Within a month after the marriage Bothwell was obliged to fly for his life, and Mary was imprisoned in Lochleven Castle.

Elizabeth may not have regretted the downfall of Mary Stuart; but when she heard of her being a captive, subject to insults and abuse from her own people, her heart was touched, and she interposed with the Scottish nobles in behalf of the unfortunate queen. Her appeal had some weight, but Mary was compelled to sign a deed of abdication in favor of her son.

A.D. 1568. A year after Lord Darnley's death Mary made her escape to England, and sought Elizabeth's protection. She crossed the Frith of Solway in a fishing-boat, and was conducted to Carlisle, where, though treated with respect, she soon discovered that she was once more a prisoner.

Elizabeth's treacherous behavior towards the erring, dethroned queen who had placed herself in her power was a crime that has left a foul stain on her memory. But she had to pay the penalty; for as most of the Roman Catholics in the British Isles regarded Mary as the rightful Queen of England, the realm was filled with plots, revolts, and secret confederacies that kept her mind constantly on the rack. Mary begged for permission to seek protection in some [090]other country; but Elizabeth secretly enjoyed the humiliation of her enemy, and was too cautious to restore the liberty of one whom she had ill treated.

Consequently the royal prisoner was removed to Bolton Castle, a gloomy fortress, where she was subjected to most cruel indignities. She was closely watched; and Elizabeth's ministers, particularly Burleigh and Leicester, reported every action that could be distorted into the appearance of treason. Any partisan of Mary's that could be attacked was speedily brought to trial, and scaffolds streamed with the innocent blood of many a victim. Elizabeth's popularity was on the wane, and her numerous acts of injustice, that laid low the heads of some of the noblest men and women of her realm, rendered her an object of hatred for the time being.

A.D. 1570. She was thirty-seven years old when Catherine de Medicis proposed her marriage with Henry of Anjou, the French prince, who was twenty years younger than the English queen.

Catherine was one of the worst women that ever lived, and knew that such a union would be perfectly ridiculous; but she was so anxious to secure the crown of the Tudors and Plantagenets for her son that she pretended sincere affection for Elizabeth, and was capable of any deception, intrigue, or even crime to gain her point. Elizabeth, on the other hand, had such an exalted opinion of her own perfections that she would acknowledge no obstacle to the union but religion. In reality, she was too sensible not to be conscious of the absurdity of uniting herself to a youth of seventeen, but kept the matter pending for many months for the purpose of gaining the good-will of France, and of thus preventing that country from taking steps against her in the affairs of Scotland and towards the release of Mary. [091]Young Henry remained passive for a long time, counting on Elizabeth's caprice and insincerity for his own escape; but when the French ambassador informed him that she was disposed to consent to the alliance, he declared that he would not go to England unless he could be allowed the public profession of the Catholic religion. Of course, that could not be thought of; so, to spare herself the indignity of being jilted, Elizabeth announced her determination never to marry at all.

Meanwhile the Duke of Norfolk united with others in forming a plot for the liberation of Queen Mary and the assassination of Elizabeth. It was discovered, and led to the imprisonment and torture of a large number of people. The queen declared that she would never release Mary, and ordered the execution of the duke. But parliament assured her "that she must lay the axe to the root of the evil, for she would have neither rest nor security while the Queen of Scots was in existence."

"What!" she exclaimed, "Can I put to death the bird, that to escape the pursuit of the hawk, has fled to my feet for protection? Honor and conscience forbid!"

A.D. 1572. Queen Elizabeth was making a visit at Kenilworth Castle in the summer of 1572, and enjoying the festivities prepared by Leicester, when news arrived of that most horrible, most atrocious massacre of St. Bartholomew in France. The tales of horror, related by those Huguenots who were fortunate enough to escape from the hands of their pitiless persecutors and seek shelter in England, aroused the indignation of the Britons to such a degree that they thirsted to take up arms against the blood-stained Charles IX.,—that midnight assassin of his own subjects.

But the very people who most warmly condemned the treachery and cruelty of the French now clamored for the [092]blood of Mary Stuart, in revenge for the slaughtered Protestants. Burleigh and Leicester terrified the queen with rumors of plots which had their origin with the royal captive, until she became convinced that her life was in peril.

After leaving Kenilworth Castle, Elizabeth made her usual summer progress, and was sumptuously entertained in each county where she halted. She received presents ranging from the richest jewels to such useful articles as gloves, handkerchiefs, stockings, and even night-dresses, and night-caps. Sir Philip Sidney, the accomplished soldier and statesman, wrote a poem in honor of the queen, that he recited at one of the entertainments, and then presented her with a cambric frock, the sleeves and collar of which were worked in black silk, and edged with gold and silver lace, and an open worked ruff set with spangles.

One day when the queen was in her barge near Greenwich a gun was discharged from a neighboring boat, the bullet passing through both arms of a rower who stood near her. Every one was shocked, but Elizabeth did not lose her presence of mind for an instant. Throwing her scarf to the man she bade him "to be of good cheer, for he should never want, for the bullet was meant for her though it had hit him." When the owner of the gun was examined he persisted that it had gone off by accident. The queen pardoned him, and said openly: "That she would never believe anything against her subjects that loving parents would not believe of their children."

It was generally thought that Elizabeth was a woman of courage, but once; although she suffered agony from toothache for several days and nights, she would not submit to having the tooth extracted until the old Bishop of London consented to a similar operation in her presence.

A.D. 1580. In 1580 officials were stationed, by the queen's orders, at the corners of the streets with shears in [093]their hands to cut off any ruff that exceeded her's in size; they were, besides, to shorten the swords of all the gentlemen who wore longer ones than she had stipulated. The French ambassador protested, and insisted upon wearing his sword as long as he pleased. No doubt he thought his taste quite as good as the queen's,—particularly when he beheld her riding behind six light-gray Hungarian horses, with their manes and tails dyed deep-orange color.

The same year Francis Drake returned from his voyage of discovery around the world. Elizabeth honored him with a visit on board his vessel, and knighted him for the courage, skill, and perseverance he had displayed.

Much anxiety and alarm were felt in England about this time on account of political plots and rumors of conspiracies against the queen's life; and the Catholic subjects, most of whom were ready to raise the standard of revolt in the name of Mary Stuart, were treated with such severity that those who could escape sought homes in foreign lands. Many noblemen were executed or put to the torture. Ambassadors from France were entertained with all the splendor that the English court could produce, for the queen delighted in thus impressing foreign visitors; but whenever they ventured to intercede for the Queen of Scots, they were met with an uncontrollable outburst of rage.

Since Elizabeth had decided to remain single she would not give her consent to the marriage of any lady or gentleman connected with her court. But Leicester had married again in spite of her, and had thus placed himself under a cloud. He excited the royal displeasure still further when he was acting as military commander in the Low countries, on account of the regal airs he assumed. He even went so far as to express his intention to hold a court that should rival in display that of England. On hearing of [094]it, Elizabeth not only forbade Leicester's wife to join him, but cut off his supplies of money, saying: "I will let the upstart know how easily the hand that has exalted him can beat him down to the dust."

Sir Walter Raleigh had succeeded Leicester in Elizabeth's esteem, and of course excited the bitter jealousy of the deposed favorite. Raleigh was the younger son of a country gentleman of small fortune. He was a soldier, seaman, statesman, poet, philosopher, and wit. His grace and beauty rendered him particularly attractive to Elizabeth, who never could bear a homely person among her attendants. One day her majesty went out for a walk after a heavy rain; arriving at a muddy gutter she stopped to consider how to get across, when Sir-Walter, with courteous presence of mind, pulled off a handsome plush cloak that he wore for the first time, and spread it on the ground for the queen to walk over. She accepted the attention with pleasure, and rewarded the gentleman with several new cloaks in place of the one he had ruined for her sake.

It is to Sir Walter Raleigh that England is indebted for her first possession in America, which, in compliment to his queen's unmarried state, he named Virginia; and it was he who introduced tobacco into England from the newly discovered coast.

On one occasion he was enjoying the weed himself, when his servant entered with a tankard of ale. Seeing his master enveloped in smoke, that proceeded from his lips, the simple fellow supposed that some internal fire was destroying his vitals, so he dashed the contents of the tankard full into Sir Walter's face, and then ran down stairs to alarm the family before the smoker should be reduced to ashes.

It was Raleigh who first presented the poet Spenser to the queen, and she was so charmed with his poetic genius that she gave him a thousand pounds. In return, he made



[097]her the heroine of several poems, and personified her in three different characters in his celebrated work, entitled the "Faerie Queen."

A.D. 1586. Another plot to assassinate the queen was laid at Mary Stuart's door, and the councillors repeated their demands for her execution. But Elizabeth shrank from appearing directly to bring an anointed sovereign to the block, though she did not hesitate to subject her to every species of quiet cruelty. Mary was kept in damp, unhealthy apartments, deprived of exercise, and on several occasions compelled to rise from a sick-bed to travel, in the depth of winter, from one prison to another. Her health became seriously impaired, but that had no effect on Elizabeth; and an insulting letter addressed to her by the royal prisoner did not tend to soften her heart.

At last Mary was induced by spies, who pretended to-be her friends, to write to the French and Spanish ambassadors requesting aid from their governments. These letters were intercepted and shown to the queen. Many of Mary's partisans were arrested; and Walsingham, one of the ministers, published a full account of the preparations France and Spain were making to invade England—where, upon landing, their troops would be joined by all the papists of the realm.

This excited the indignation of the populace to the utmost degree, and both foreign and native Catholics were in danger in consequence; even the ambassadors were insulted in their houses. Every heart now warmed towards the queen; and when the conspirators were discovered and locked up in the Tower, the event was celebrated by the lighting of bonfires and ringing of bells.

At last it was decided that Mary Stuart should have a trial, if so perfect a farce merits that name. Elizabeth had said publicly that she considered the Scottish queen un- [098]worthy of counsel, and that was in itself enough to condemn her without a trial.

When the commissioners arrived at Fotheringay, and ordered Mary to appear before them, she refused to acknowledge their authority; but they were armed with a letter from Elizabeth, which she was compelled to obey.

Mary's deportment in this trying emergency was spirited and adroit. She told the commissioners "that she had endeavored to gain her liberty, and would continue to do so as long as she lived; but that she had never plotted against the life of the queen."


After pleading for herself for two days, Mary demanded to be heard before the parliament of England, or the queen herself and her council. The court was then adjourned, the whole proceeding reported to Elizabeth, and twelve days later sentence of death was pronounced on the Scottish [099]queen. At the next meeting of parliament it was urged that the sentence should be carried into effect.

At this period Elizabeth behaved with her characteristic selfishness. She was anxious for Mary's death, and felt no pity for the object of her fury; but she feared to appear before the world as the author of the revenge upon which she was bent, and sought to make parliament share the odium of her deed.

The Kings of France and Scotland interceded for Mary and increased Elizabeth's irresolution; but Leicester and Walsingham, well knowing what their fate would be should Elizabeth chance to die, and thus make way for Mary to the throne of England, kept urging their sovereign to sign the death-warrant. At last she yielded; but no sooner had she done so than she fell into a state of melancholy, and secretly urged one of the castellans of Fotheringay to murder his hapless charge. She was willing to resort to any means of getting Mary out of the way, providing she could preserve her own reputation by putting the blame on others. But she was not to be gratified, and on the 8th of February the execution took place in due form. Not one of the council had the courage to inform the queen that the bloody deed was accomplished. In the evening she asked "what meant the bonfires and the merry ringing of the bells?" The answer stunned her for a moment; then she burst into a passionate fit of weeping, sharply rebuked her council and bade them quit her sight at once, saying that she had never commanded nor intended the execution of Mary Stuart.

This may have been hypocrisy; but more likely it was remorse for a needless, outrageous, barbarous act.

Elizabeth wrote to James VI. of Scotland, professing her innocence of the "miserable accident," as she was pleased to term the murder of his mother, and assuring [100]him of her affection for himself. To the French ambassador she said that the death of her kinswoman was the greatest misfortune of her life, and that although she had signed the death-warrant to gratify her subjects, she had never meant to carry it into effect. She added that her council had played her a trick which would have cost them their heads, did she not believe that they had acted for the welfare of herself and the state. After Mary Stuart's death there seemed to be an end to conspiracies for a while, and no very important event occupied the queen's mind until she began to make preparations to defend herself against the invasion of the grand Spanish army, called the Invincible Armada. She showed herself on this occasion worthy to be the queen and heroine of a nation that were eager to prove their devotion and loyalty.

A.D. 1588. The despised, disgraced Earl of Leicester, who had by this time regained his place in the royal favor, was appointed commander-in-chief of the army at Tilbury. Lord Hunsdon commanded the queen's body-guard for the defence of London, and Sir Francis Drake was appointed vice-admiral.

Elizabeth took up her abode at Havering Bower, a place selected for her by Leicester, situated between the rear and van of her army. There she appeared as warrior and queen. Mounted on a noble charger, with a general's truncheon in her hand, a polished steel corselet over her magnificent apparel, and a page in attendance bearing her white plumed helmet, she rode bareheaded from rank to rank, addressing her soldiers with words of encouragement and hope. She was greeted with loud shouts of applause by her admiring subjects, who felt it an honor to fight for such a noble, courageous sovereign.

The Spaniards had flattered themselves that with an army equipped as their's was it would require only one [101]fight by sea and one on land to achieve the conquest of England; but they soon found their mistake, and not a single Spaniard set foot on English soil except as a prisoner.

The Spanish Armada was soon scattered, and victory was declared for England.

Immense crowds gathered to welcome the queen on her return to Westminster. She was then fifty-five years of age, at the height of her glory, and beloved by her subjects, whom she had ruled for thirty years, and who had united, one and all, Catholic and Protestant, to support her in vindicating the honor of England.

Her first act was to reward her brave commanders and provide for the wounded seamen. Upon Leicester she would have bestowed the highest office ever held by an English subject,—that of lord-lieutenant of England and Ireland; but, much to the satisfaction of the other statesmen, he died before the patent could be made out. A series of thanksgivings were observed in London to commemorate the victory, and the queen was presented with a number of rich and valuable gifts.

Queen Elizabeth was never an idle woman. Long before day, in winter, she transacted business with her Secretaries of state, heard public documents, and gave her orders concerning them. After breakfast she would promenade in her garden or the corridors of the palace, as the weather prompted, attended by some learned gentlemen of the court, with whom she discussed intellectual topics, and a portion of each day was devoted to study.

She observed strictly all the fast-days prescribed by the church. She was a moderate eater, and seldom drank anything but beer; when she dined in public the table was magnificently spread, with a profusion of costly plate, for she was fond of displaying her riches, particularly before [102]foreign ambassadors. Her cup-bearer always served her on his knees, and music and singing accompanied the banquet.

At supper, when the cares of the day were over, the queen would chat freely and pleasantly with her court, and the evenings were passed with chess-playing, music, or recitations and stories by the famous comedian, Tarleton, and others. She was fond of apes and dogs, but, beyond all, of children, with whom she loved to talk and amuse herself.

As a rule, Elizabeth treated her attendants well; but when her temper got the upper hand, which was not seldom, she descended to the level of a common virago, and more than once struck some maid of honor for a trifling offence. But these outbursts of rage were reserved for the people of the palace; her other subjects witnessed only sweetness and good humor.

Her impulses were good, as she proved in the case of Margaret Lambrun, a Scottish woman, whose husband was supposed to have died of grief because of the tragic fate of the Queen of Scots, in whose service he was. Margaret took the desperate resolution to avenge his death; so, disguised in male attire, she proceeded, with a concealed brace of pistols, to the English court, with the intention of killing the queen with one and herself with the other. One day, when her majesty was walking in the garden of the palace, Margaret made her way through the crowd so as to get near enough to make sure of her aim, but in her excitement she dropped one of the pistols. She was instantly seized, and would have been hurried away to prison but Elizabeth said "she would examine the young man herself."

A.D. 1589. When brought before her Margaret bravely acknowledged who she was, her intended action, and its cause. The queen heard her patiently; then not



[105]only granted her a full pardon, but provided her with an escort to France, as she had requested.

Many persecutions on the score of religion succeeded the victory over the Spanish Armada, and one of the greatest grievances of Elizabeth's reign was known as the privy seal loans. Whenever an individual was known to have amassed a sum of money her majesty's ministers would borrow for the royal treasury. To be sure, they paid a liberal interest; but there was no security for the principal, besides the sovereign's promise to pay, which, it is easy to see, would have been valueless in the event of death.

After the death of Leicester, Essex, who had been created Knight of the Garter, succeeded to the queen's favor; but while she was showing him the utmost consideration he excited her wrath by marrying the widow of Sir Philip Sidney, the illustrious soldier and statesman, who had been killed at the battle of Zutphen. He was at once replaced by Sir Robert Cecil, and when Henry III. sent to England for aid to defend himself against the Spanish invaders, he injured his cause by saying that Essex approved of his demand; for Elizabeth replied, "That the Earl of Essex would have it thought that he ruled the realm, but that nothing was more untrue; that she would make him the most pitiful fellow in the realm, and instead of sending the King of France more troops, she would recall all those she had already lent him." Having said this she haughtily swept out of the room, and would have nothing further to say to the ambassador.

A.D. 1592. Later, when Essex showed prompt obedience at the queen's command for his return to England, she was so pleased that she entertained him with feasts, and sent him back to France honored with the highest distinction. Every request he made was granted almost before [106]it was considered. Nevertheless, Elizabeth's capricious nature asserted itself when Ireland was in a state of revolt, and there was difficulty in finding some one to fill the post of lord-deputy over the distracted country. On that occasion Essex peremptorily insisted that Sir George Carew was the proper man for the office, whereupon, forgetting how by numerous indulgences she had encouraged him to speak freely, Elizabeth felt so offended at his positive tone that she lost her self-control, and giving him a sound box on the ear, bade him "go and be hanged."

Essex was so indignant that he swore a horrible oath, and impertinently adding something about "a king in petticoats."

Later the royal mind was changed again, and he was sent as lord-deputy to Ireland.

While there, he was so unmindful of the queen's orders that he was accused of treason, and on his return shut up in the Tower. He had many enemies, and Cecil so prejudiced the queen and her court against him that he was condemned to die.

A.D. 1601. Elizabeth hesitated as long as possible before signing his death-warrant. She had given Essex a ring when he was in favor, with the promise that if ever he offended her the sight of that token would insure forgiveness. The imprisoned statesman did send the ring by a boy who chanced to pass his prison window one morning; but by an unlucky accident it fell into the hands of the lord-admiral, a deadly foe of Essex, who said nothing about it. The queen concluding that her former favorite was too proud to sue for forgiveness, because the ring she had been expecting did not reach her, ordered the execution to proceed.

The English nation could not forgive the death of the generous and gallant nobleman, and the queen was no



[109]longer received with cheers when she appeared in public. She did not fail to notice the change in her subject's feelings towards her, and this made her excessively unhappy. A deep depression took possession of her, and though she tried to appear gay her heart was very heavy. Several attempts were made on her life from time to time as she advanced in years, but fortunately each was frustrated.

Literature made rapid strides during Queen Elizabeth's reign, particularly all that was written in Italian, which language her majesty understood well. Many dramatists rose to distinction at this period, the greatest being William Shakspeare. Spenser and Sir Philip Sidney added lustre to this reign also.

Elizabeth's last parliament was summoned in the autumn of 1601. She performed the ceremony with more than her customary display; but she was in such feeble health as to be unable to support the weight of the royal robes, and she was actually sinking to the ground when a nobleman, who stood near, caught her and supported her in his arms. She rallied and went through the fatiguing ceremony with her usual dignity and grace.

The science of medicine was in such a rude condition in the sixteenth century that the wealthy were treated with doses of pulverized jewels or gold. The poor had the best of it; for they were obliged to depend on herbs and ointments which certainly must have been more efficacious.

Queen Elizabeth had so little confidence in doctors or their prescriptions that she could not be induced to consult them even when she was very ill.

A.D. 1603. Her last sickness began in March, 1603, and when she was urged to seek medical aid, she angrily replied: "That she knew her own constitution better than anybody else, and that she was not in such danger as they imagined." She grew worse, however, and died two weeks [110]later, in the seventieth year of her age, and the forty-fourth of her reign.

She was buried in Westminster Abbey in the same grave with her sister. Mary Tudor. Her successor, James I., erected a monument to her memory. On a slab of pure white marble the effigy of this remarkable queen lies beneath a stately canopy. Her head rests on embroidered cushions, her feet on a couchant lion. Royal robes hang around her form in classic folds, and her closely curled hair is covered with a simple cap. She has no crown, the sceptre has been broken from one hand, also the cross from the imperial orb which she holds in the other.

That learned English philosopher, Lord Bacon, has written of Queen Elizabeth: "She was pious, moderate, constant, and an enemy to novelty. She hated vice, and studied to preserve an honorable name. No age has ever produced her like for the government of a kingdom."






(A.D. 1575-1618.)

Anne of Denmark was certainly less intellectual than some of her predecessors, and on many occasions showed herself wanting in judgment and common sense; but her political position was of immense importance, because she was the wife of the first monarch who ruled over the whole of the British isles. The Orkney and Shetland islands had fallen into the hands of the Danish King during the preceding century, and were yielded to James VI. of Scotland on condition of his marrying the Princess Anne.

These islands were of value because of their geographical position; for they had become the rendezvous of pirates, who found them convenient headquarters whence their raids could be made along the British coast.

Princess Anne's parents were Frederic II. of Denmark, one of the richest princes of Europe, and Sophia, a woman loved and admired for her domestic virtues. These royal parents had such luxurious ideas about the rearing of their children that although Anne was a strong, healthy child, well-formed in every respect, she was never permitted to walk until she was nine years of age.

A.D 1585. Negotiations for her marriage began when she was ten; and then it was thought proper to teach her to sew, read, and dance, before she could be regarded as an accomplished maid. [114]James VI. was born at Edinburgh Castle, but the poor little unfortunate was early deprived of parental care; for while he was yet a baby his father, Lord Darnley, was killed, and his luckless mother, Mary Stuart, was forced to seek refuge in England.

At the early age of fourteen months James was proclaimed King of Scotland. On that occasion the Earl of Marr, his guardian, carried the infant in procession and placed him on the throne; another peer held the crown above his head, while a third placed the globe and sceptre in his little hands, and Lord Marr repeated the necessary oath in the name of the little one, who was then carried back to his nursery.

Of course little James was only king in name, for many years would have to pass before he would be fit to undertake the reins of government. Meanwhile, his uncle, the Earl of Murray, was appointed to act as regent. Unfortunately for the young king, he had a nurse who was by no means capable of taking charge of him, for she drank to excess and never controlled him or his diet properly. The consequence was that he developed slowly, and was such a weakling that he was full five years old before he could walk, and throughout his life his limbs were never as strong as they ought to have been. This defect may have been partly due, however, to the absurd manner of dressing infants three centuries ago in Scotland; for as soon as they were born they were swathed in bandages, with their arms bound down to their side and their legs close together and straight out, precisely after the manner of an Egyptian mummy. Is it any wonder that they were long in discovering the use of their limbs? In some parts of Germany babies are subjected to this cruel swaddling to the present day, but the arms are left free, and fortunately the custom is gradually going out of favor.



[117]Though backward in the use of his legs, little James talked wonderfully well, and soon learned to ask questions that were difficult to answer, and to make remarks that often seemed most profound for one of his age

A.D. 1571. He was just four years when he was called upon to perform regal duty by convening parliament. The Earl of Marr carried him to the grand Gothic hall of Stirling Castle, and placed him on the throne. He seemed impressed at the numerous assemblage of lords and gentlemen, but looked around as though to familiarize himself with the scene, and when the proper time came recited the speech that had been drilled into him beforehand. But he added a little impromptu speech of his own, for his eyes rested on a hole in the canopy above the throne, and he exclaimed aloud in his childish voice: "There is ane hole in this parliament." In the present day such a remark from the lips of a little boy might excite a smile, but certainly no great importance would be attached to it, but in the year 1571 the Scotch were very superstitious, and so they gazed at the infant monarch with amazement. "What could he possibly mean?" asked the wise lords of one another; for they never for one moment doubted that the spirit of prophesy had prompted the remark, and that the king foresaw an awful decrease in their numbers to be made by death.

In the course of the year the Earl of Lenox, James's grandfather, was killed, and that justified the royal child's remark in the eyes of the superstitious. The old earl was on his way to visit James, when he was stabbed in the back by conspirators. The brave Earl of Marr, attracted by the dying man's groans, rushed out from Stirling Castle with his servants and carried him to a place of safety. "Is the babe attacked?" asked the old man, and on being assured that he alone was the sufferer, he replied, with a sigh of [118]relief, "Then all is well," and died soon after with perfect resignation.

The Earl of Marr was tutor to the king until he died, when he was succeeded by George Buchanan, a bad, morose, capricious man, who had such rigid ideas with regard to discipline that old Lady Marr, the earl's mother, often wept on account of his cruel treatment towards his pupil.

James had been removed to Stirling Castle during his infancy, and there he passed his youth. His favorite companion was Thomas Erskine, his foster-brother, who happened to be born on the same day as the young king, whose cradle and sports he shared. Another playmate was the young Earl of Marr, for whom James formed an attachment so warm and true that it lasted to the end of his life.

A.D. 1577. The civil and religious wars that were raging in Scotland had their effect on the young king, and, to some extent, appear to have injured his character; for he was, in consequence, under the control of some people whose influence was bad, and prompted him to authoritative manners that were out of place in one so young, and made him appear in a false light.

As he grew older he would at times pretend to be an imbecile, merely from a spirit of perversity; but he was neither a fool nor a coward, as he proved later.

He was only sixteen years of age when the Earl of Gowrie captured him, but he managed to make his escape and seek the protection of his great-uncle, the Earl of March. A revolution succeeded, and Gowrie was beheaded soon after.

A.D. 1580. Three years later, Frederic II. of Denmark sent ambassadors to Scotland to offer to the young king the hand of his second daughter in marriage. Queen [119]Elizabeth opposed this alliance so violently that the marriage-treaty was delayed several years. She ought to have been pleased at the prospect of a Protestant wife for the future King of England, but it was her peculiarity to break off every match that she could influence.

Meanwhile, Henry of Navarre offered his sister Catherine for a wife to James; but as she was many years older than the young king, and as Anne of Denmark was just sixteen, and a miniature that had been sent to Scotland represented her as being very beautiful, the decision was quickly made in her favor.

Before the necessary arrangements could be completed her father, King Frederic, died.

A.D. 1589. The Earl-marischal of Scotland, accompanied by other dignitaries, proceeded, as proxies for James, with a noble fleet, to claim the young princess and carry her to Scotland. They were received with great joy by Queen Sophia, who, with Princess Anne, met them at the fortress of Corenburg. There the bride embarked on board a ship commanded by the Danish admiral, Peter Munch, who, with a fleet of eleven other fine ships, set sail for Scotland. It was in the month of September, and the sea was so rough that although the squadron sighted land in due season contrary winds blew them to the coast of Norway. Instead of attributing this occurrence to natural causes, Peter Munch was in a dreadful state of perplexity, and began to consider what witches he had offended to such an extent as to induce them to raise the winds and waves so that he could not bring the young queen to Scotland. Suddenly it occurred to him that he had boxed the ears of an officer at Copenhagen, whose wife was a well-known witch. He felt satisfied then that in order to avenge the insult to her husband the witch-wife had tampered with the winds, and so the unfortunate creature was burnt alive when he got back home. [120]Having once determined that they were bewitched, nothing went well with the fleet, and a series of disasters reduced ten of the ships to such a deplorable condition that they returned to Denmark. The one in which the queen had sailed took refuge in a harbor on the coast of Norway, where, as the cold weather had already set in, there was every prospect that the bride would have to stay all the winter. She wrote an account of her sufferings to the King of Scotland, which a young Dane undertook to deliver in spite of witches and weather.

While expecting his wife King James had made grand preparations for her reception, and he was so disappointed at her delay that he resolved to go himself to fetch her. Now this was a brave undertaking, for the best ship that could be furnished was a miserable bark, scarcely fit to brave the wintry storms of the German ocean; however, a prosperous breeze favored the courageous king until he approached the Norwegian coast. He had enjoyed four days of fine weather, but on the fifth a furious tempest sprang up, and for twenty-four hours the royal bark was in danger of wreck. At last she ran into a little harbor, where King James landed.

After several days' travelling through snow and ice, he reached the village where Anne had established herself, and without waiting for the ceremonies of his rank and station, he left his attendants and marched straight to the presence of his bride. On the following Sunday they were married, and the king immediately, and very thoughtfully, sent a messenger over the mountains to Denmark to inform Queen Sophia of his arrival and marriage with the princess.

Her majesty then invited the newly-wedded pair to make her a visit. They consented, and set out upon a journey beset with so many hardships that they were obliged to [121]halt several times before they reached the Castle of Croenburg, where all the royal family of Denmark had assembled to meet them.

All was gayety and splendor at the rich court, where the marriage of James and Anne was celebrated over again according to the Lutheran rites. Nothing interfered with their pleasure, excepting the quarrelsome spirit of the Scottish nobles who had accompanied the king. They all drank too freely, his majesty included, and there were frequent brawls and strifes among them.

It was not until after the wedding of Queen Anne's sister Elizabeth to the Duke of Brunswick, which took place early in the spring, that the Scottish bride and groom thought of proceeding to their future home.

The royal family of Denmark entertained such a warm affection for one another that when the moment of parting arrived it was a sore trial for the young queen to bid farewell to her loving mother, as well as to the young king, her brother, who was so fond of her that in later years he paid several long visits at her court.

The royal fleet sailed from Croenburg in April, and when the bridal pair landed a large crowd of faithful subjects assembled to welcome them to Scotland.

Shortly after, preparations for the queen's coronation were begun. On the Tuesday preceding that ceremony her majesty made her state-entry into the city of Edinburgh, riding in a richly gilt car, lined with crimson velvet; on either side of her sat her favorite Danish maids of honor. The king rode on horseback just in front of the queen's carriage, and a train of robles escorted the royal couple to Holyrood. The coronation ceremony was performed on the following Sunday at the Abbey church of Holyrood.

On the following Tuesday, accompanied by the king and [122]all the lords and ladies who had assisted at her coronation, the queen passed through the streets of Edinburgh in an open coach.

At the end of a month passed in all sorts of festivities and rejoicings, the Danish visitors returned home, and Queen Anne went to live at Dunfermline Palace, which had been renovated and refurnished to suit her taste.

As the young queen's knowledge of household arrangements was necessarily limited, and as she was inexperienced concerning the customs of her new country, the king advised her always to consult his faithful friend and loyal subject, Sir James Melville, who held a high position in the royal household.

With the perversity that she showed on many occasions throughout her reign Queen Anne immediately took a decided aversion to Melville, and never in any emergency sought his advice.

There had been no queen at the Scottish court for a quarter of a century, consequently the men surrounding it had become so course and brutal in their manners that it was necessary to make many changes, and even to dismiss some of the most faithful officials before ladies could feel safe or comfortable.

A.D. 1590. Among the reformations that were taking place in Scotland, the destruction of all the works of art in the churches were deemed necessary; but no steps were taken to abolish the horrible superstition that led to the burning of hecatombs of witches. More than half the time of the judges was occupied with their absurd confessions. One of the most remarkable of these witches was Annis Simpson, called by her neighbors "the wise wife of Keith." She declared that she had a familiar spirit, who appeared in a visible form at her call, and informed her whether people who were ill or exposed to danger should



[125]live or die. The king asked her what words she used to summon the spirit. She replied: "That she merely called ''Holla, master!' and he came without fail." Then she proceeded to describe one of the witch meetings which, she said, was held at night in a church, where the devil in a long black gown, with a hat on his head, preached from the pulpit to an audience of witches. She added, furthermore, that one man got his ears boxed by the preacher because he thanked God that no harm had come to the king, though many had been injured. Thereupon the devil solemnly pronounced this sentence: "Il est un homme de Dieu." This was the more firmly credited because the woman did not understand what the words meant; therefore, it was argued, she could not have invented them. James was immensely flattered at being called a man of God by the evil spirit.

"The wise wife of Keith" was first strangled, and then burned in company with others whom she had accused.

A.D. 1592. One summer when Queen Anne was visiting at her palace of Falkland, Bothwell, a relation of the earl who was Mary Stuart's husband, made a furious attack on it. He was repulsed, but entered the stables and carried off all the horses. The queen was so annoyed at this rude adventure that she removed at once to Dalkeith. Margaret Twineslace, one of the Danish maids of honor, was engaged to be married to John Wemys, one of the king's gentlemen, who was known to be in constant communication with Bothwell. He was, therefore, suspected of knowing, at least, that the attack on Falkland was to take place, though there was no proof of his having participated. Still he was shut up in the guard-room of Dalkeith Castle, and every one thought his life was in danger.

One night, when it was Margaret's turn to sleep in the queen's bed-chamber, she waited until the royal pair were [126]in the land of Nod, then softly stole out and went to her lover's prison, where she told the guard that the king had sent her to command them to lead John Wemys forthwith to the queen's apartment, where his majesty wished to question him. Never, for a moment, suspecting that they were deceived, two sentinels led the prisoner to the queen's chamber door. Margaret then charged them to remain outside quietly, and taking her lover by the hand, led him boldly into the room and closed the door. Without speaking a word she softly opened the window, and, presenting John with a rope, helped him to let himself down and escape.

The guard waited patiently until morning dawned, then raised the alarm, which led to the discovery of the little trick. The queen laughed heartily when she heard how Wemys had escaped, and begged the king to pardon him.

James himself was amused at the adventure, and issued a proclamation offering pardon to the escaped prisoner if he would return to his duties. This he did within a few days, and soon after married the Danish maid-of-honor who had risked so much for his sake.

A.D. 1594. In 1594 Queen Anne had a little son born at Stirling Castle. He was baptized according to the Episcopal ritual of Scotland, and named Henry-Frederic. The ceremony was conducted with great pomp, and after it was over the queen received all the foreign ambassadors. They brought costly presents, and Queen Elizabeth sent a set of silver and several cups of massive gold, so heavy that Sir James Melville declared he could hardly lift them.

The young queen loved her little son so tenderly that when she found it was her husband's intention to leave him at Stirling Castle to be cared for by the Earl of Marr and the old countess, his mother, she was sorely grieved [127]and begged that she might keep the child with her. But the king refused, saying, "that he knew the infant was in safe keeping with Marr, and though he doubted nothing of her good intentions, yet if some faction got strong enough she could not hinder his boy from being used against him, as he himself had been against his unfortunate mother."

No doubt Anne ought to have been satisfied to make a virtue of necessity; but she could not understand any argument but that of her own heart, which prompted her to rebel against the Marrs because they had possession of her darling, A.D. 1595. She fretted and wept until the king was beside himself to know what was best to do. When little Henry was fifteen months old his mother requested that the question of his guardianship might be settled by council; but James was too shrewd to submit to that proceeding, so he urged the queen to satisfy the craving of her heart by going at once to Stirling Castle. But that was not what her majesty desired; therefore, she declared that she was not well, and refused to stir. James insisted, and obliged his wife to obey by superintending the arrangements for the journey and turning a deaf ear to all her objections. Finding that there was no help for it, Queen Anne set out on horseback with her train of attendants; but with her usual perversity she feigned illness, and stopped at a palace by the way. She was anxious to see her baby, no doubt, but could not bear that her husband should find her too yielding; so, on every occasion when he deemed it necessary to oppose her, she made him suffer for it. Yet James VI. was a devoted husband throughout his life, and never took a firm stand against his wife unless urgent reasons required it.

As soon as the Earl of Marr was informed of the queen's whereabouts he hastened to pay his respects to her; but [128]she absolutely refused to see him, and her people treated him so uncivilly that he was glad to return to Stirling Castle. It was foolish in Queen Anne to insult her husband's most faithful friend and the man who had charge of her infant, but that was not the extent of her folly.

During the king's absence on his summer travels she actually went so far as to plan an expedition, which she meant to head, for the purpose of carrying off the infant prince by force. Fortunately, James heard of it in time to reach the place where his wife was stopping and bring her back to her senses. He at once accompanied her to Stirling Castle, where she was permitted to fondle little Henry as much as she pleased.

It was not unnatural that Queen Anne should want to keep her child with her; but she showed decided want of character in insisting upon it after the king had explained to her that the safety of his own person, the child, and the kingdom required this sacrifice at her hands. Had she taken pains to inform herself she would have seen that all the misfortunes of the preceding kings of the line of Stuart had arisen on account of their having been minors at the time of their accession. The throne had in each case been claimed for the son, which necessitated the destruction of the father and the appointment of a regent. Thus the strongest party had ruled according to their own ideas of justice.

It was to prevent the recurrence of such a miserable state of affairs that King James fortified his son in a well-guarded castle, under the supervision of such tried friends and loyal subjects as the Earl of Marr and his mother.

A.D. 1596. Anne's outbursts of temper because of this arrangement were for a time appeased, when her second child was born. It was a girl, and received the name of Elizabeth for the Queen of England. The infant princess [129]was given in charge of Lord and Lady Livingstone, though the ministers of the Episcopal Church objected on the score of the latter's adherence to Catholicism. This child afterwards became Queen of Bohemia.

There were two people among Queen Anne's court who occupied a very prominent position, and were specially favored with her protection. These were Alexander and Beatrice Ruthven, members of a family in Scotland who claimed royal descent. The Ruthven family had attained the earldom of Gowry, and its members had aided in three separate assaults on the personal liberty of the sovereign; they were, therefore, the cause of a great deal of fighting and bloodshed.

A.D. 1597. Young Alexander became the object of King James's jealousy on one occasion. It occurred in this wise: "One day, when the queen was walking in the gardens of Falkland Palace with Beatrice Ruthven, they suddenly came upon the maid-of-honor's brother, Alexander, a youth of nineteen, who lay fast asleep beneath the shade of a large tree. For a bit of fun her majesty tied a silver ribbon around his neck, which had been given to her by the king, without arousing the sleeper. Presently King James himself came along. The silver ribbon caught his attention, he stooped to examine it, frowned, and looked angrily on the youth, who was, by the way, a gentleman-of-the-bed-chamber, then hurried on without waking young Ruthven. Beatrice, who had been anxiously watching this little scene from behind a neighboring bush, rushed forward, snatched the ribbon from her brother's neck, and hastened with it through a private entrance to the queen's room. Hurriedly opening a drawer, she deposited the ribbon therein, and had just time to inform her majesty 'that her reason for so doing would be presently explained,' when the king entered, and in a threatening tone demanded [130]the silver ribbon. Luckily Anne was able to produce it, and thus dispel the angry frown that had gathered on the brow of her lord, no doubt congratulating herself upon the possession of so sagacious a maid-of-honor."

For the time being King James's jealousy was appeased; but the Gowry conspiracy aroused it again three years later, and Alexander Ruthven was again the object of it.

A.D. 1600. The queen was awakened much earlier than usual one bright, warm morning in August by the king's preparations for a hunting expedition. She asked "why he started so early;" to which he replied, "that he wished to be astir betimes, as he expected to kill a prime buck before noon."

It was true that he was going hunting, but he had another object in view. He had been informed by Alexander Ruthven that a Jesuit with a large bag of gold had just been seized and shut up at Gowry House, in Perth, awaiting examination. It was no unusual occurrence at that era for any one besides a common robber to take possession of whatever gold might be found on the person of a traveller, and then spare no effort to prove said traveller Jesuitical. So King James set forth in high glee with the prospect of counting over a bag of gold, besides enjoying a morning hunt. Several hours were passed in the latter diversion; and at noon, accompanied by only one or two attendants, the king left the woods and entered Gowry House. He was received by the Earl of Gowry, young Ruthven's elder brother, who had just returned from the court of Queen Elizabeth. After dinner, at a sign from Alexander Ruthven, the king withdrew, expecting to be introduced to the Jesuit with the gold. Unsuspectingly he followed the young man up various winding stairs and through gloomy, intricate passages to a circular room, [131]used by the Go wry family as a prison. He was surprised, on entering, to behold a gigantic man in a complete suit of black armor, and still more so when Alexander closed the door and locked it, cutting off all retreat.


He then made an assault upon the king,—who, though unarmed, kept him at bay,—and reproached him with the death of his father, the Earl of Gowry. The man in armor took no part in the struggle. The king remonstrated with Alexander, and reminded him that he was a child when the late Earl of Gowry was beheaded, and had nothing whatever to do with it. He also spoke of the affection the queen bore to his sister Beatrice, and of the kindness and attention he himself had received at court. Young Ruthven paused [132]for a moment, then made a second attack upon the king, who would surely have been murdered but for the vigilance of his page, young Ramsay. This youth missed his royal master, and, suspecting some evil, sought him through the house. The king's voice, calling for help, guided the boy's steps to the circular chamber, which he entered through a private door, having forced it open. He flew at Alexander Ruthven and dragged him from the king's throat, shouting all the time for help. Some of the Gowry servants rushed upon the scene and assisted Ramsay, who was struggling with Alexander Ruthven. At this juncture the rest of the royal hunting party arrived, and broke open the door, but not until the Earl of Gowry, who proved to be the man in armor, and young Ruthven were slain.

A.D. 1601. This conspiracy created great consternation in Scotland. It was a dark, gloomy night when the king set out with his retinue to return to Falkland Palace; but all the people swarmed out of their houses with torches, and shouted with joy to behold their sovereign safe from the hands of traitors.

In 1601 a little prince was born at Dunfermline, who later became Charles I. of England.

A.D. 1603. A couple of years after this event Queen Elizabeth died, and King James was invited to come to London, and take possession of the crown under the title of James I.

Of course this was no surprise; it was an exaltation that had been eagerly anticipated by the royal family as well as the whole nation. Yet when the moment arrived for the king to bid farewell to his Scottish subjects, it was very like a father parting from a numerous family, and many tears were shed. On the Sunday before his departure from England a sermon was preached on the subject in church, to which King James responded, bidding his people a loving and tender farewell. [133]He went to England alone, having arranged that the queen should follow in twenty days, providing his reception was such as to assure him that his family would be safe and happy. On his arrival there he was greeted with such wild demonstrations of joy that he was perfectly astonished. "These people will spoil a good king," was his pithy remark to the Earl of Marr, who had accompanied him.

No sooner was Queen Anne convinced that her son's guardian was well out of the way, than she set off for Stirling Castle, accompanied by a strong body of nobles, never doubting that she could easily intimidate the Countess of Marr into the surrender of her son Henry. But the old lady proved herself equal to the emergency, and flatly refused to give up the boy unless ordered to do so by the king himself. Some fighting ensued, and the queen flew into such a tremendous passion that she became seriously ill, and had to be put to bed in the royal apartments of the castle.

Messengers were forthwith despatched to inform the king of the condition of his silly, spoiled wife, and of the action that had occasioned her illness. With his usual forbearance, James forgave his spouse, and thought only of her illness. He immediately sent the Duke of Lenox and the Earl of Marr to see what arrangements they could make to pacify her majesty.

The royal lady not only refused to see Marr, but would not receive her son from his hands, nor travel from Stirling to Edinburgh if he were of the company,—so thoroughly did she hate one of her husband's most loyal adherents.

When this whim was conveyed to James, he swore a great many oaths, and wrote a letter of remonstrance to his better half, which, however, did not mollify her in the least. Then the royal husband compromised by ordering Marr to deliver the young prince to the Duke of Lenox, [134]who would consign him with due ceremony to the queen, and then to hasten to England, where his presence was greatly needed.

This arrangement pacified Anne, and she removed at once to Holyrood to make preparations for leaving Scotland. These were completed in a couple of months.

Her majesty was met at Berwick by the ladies of Queen Elizabeth's court, who carried her the costumes and jewels of the defunct queen.

King James ordered that the queen's household should be settled before her entrance into London, so that she might be properly escorted on that occasion. But the royal pair could not agree as to the appointments, for Anne desired to retain her Scottish subjects in the principal posts of honor, and his majesty knew that the English would not submit to that arrangement.

He appointed Sir George Carew for the queen's chamberlain. Her majesty persisted in retaining Kennedy; whereupon James, whose patience had been sorely tried by the number of applicants who had presented themselves for confirmation, flew into a passion when Kennedy appeared before him. He bade him "Begone!" and added "that if he caught him carrying the chamberlain's staff before his wife he should take it out of his hand and break it over his pate."

The Scotchman very prudently made the best of his way back home, and then Queen Anne accepted the English chamberlain, but retained all her Scottish ladies, adding to their number only two of her new subjects.

Her two elder children accompanied her, and they were enthusiastically received everywhere. Among the presents that were generously bestowed on them were silver cups filled with gold-pieces. When they arrived at Althorpe an exquisite fête, prepared by Ben Jonson, awaited them. [135]It was called the Masque of the Fairies, and took place in a magnificent park, where, accompanied by joyful music, fairies and satyrs recited appropriate poems of welcome, and made presents to the royal family.

The queen was so delighted with Ben Jonson's genius that she afterwards employed him to prepare entertainments for the amusement of her court.

The first festival held at Windsor Castle after the arrival of the royal family was for the purpose of bestowing the title of Knight of the Garter on Prince Henry, the Duke of Lenox, and other nobles.

The queen openly expressed her pride and admiration of Prince Henry when he was presented to her in the robes of the Garter, which she pronounced exceedingly becoming.

In consequence of the plague, which was raging to an alarming extent in England, the coronation was postponed from time to time, and when it did take place the usual procession from the Tower through the city to Westminster was dispensed with, and the ceremony was performed almost in private. The people were so disappointed that a grand festival was promised to them as soon as the pestilence should abate. It took place with great splendor the following spring, when the king, queen, and Prince Henry participated.

In the household of Anne of Denmark there was an office filled by an old lady called "the mother-of-the-maids," whose duty it was to keep order among the ladies,—no doubt an exceedingly difficult one.

The belle of the court was Lady Arabella Stuart, whose descent made her the next heir to the crown of England after James I. and his family. Previous to the arrival of James there had been a plot, headed by Sir Walter Raleigh, formed for the purpose of asserting that lady's claim; but that fact did not make any impression on the [136]sovereign's mind that could affect her unfavorably; on the contrary, he distinguished her with marked favors, and allowed her, as she deserved, the rank of first lady at court after the queen.


The conspirators of this plot were brought to trial during the autumn while the court was sojourning at Winchester Palace, and many of them were pardoned just at the moment when they were being led to the scaffold. King James did this to make them appreciate the full extent of his mercy, though many of them were banished afterwards. Sir Walter Raleigh was shut up in the Tower, with his sentence hanging over his head, to be carried into effect at the royal pleasure. He was not, however, deprived of his income or his actual property, because the queen interested herself in his behalf, and felt very sorry on account [137]of the cruel treatment he had received from the attorney-general during his trial. It was supposed by some people that she, as well as Prince Henry, doubted his guilt, but there is no proof of that.

A.D. 1604. When Prince Charles was between three and four years of age his health was so bad that Sir Robert Carey and his wife, who had charge of the royal child, were ordered to bring him from Dunfermline to his parents. From that time he improved so rapidly that he soon became a robust boy; and as years went by, and he developed into manhood, he was distinguished for his graceful bearing and splendid constitution.

A.D. 1610. One of the proudest and happiest periods of Queen Anne's life was when her eldest son was created Prince of Wales. The event was celebrated with great splendor, and Ben Jonson wrote an address in verse, which was read, while a pantomime represented the prince as wakening and reviving the dying genius of chivalry.

The royal parents, the Princess and Prince Charles stood at the bridge by Westminster Palace to receive the prince when he arrived, escorted down the Thames in state by the lord-mayor and city authorities.

The gratified mother conducted him into the palace. A number of festivals succeeded, and the king introduced his son formally to the assembled houses of parliament during the following week.

A grand masque was given, in which all the ladies and gentlemen of the court took part, the music, painting, dancing, and decorations being guided and arranged by Inigo Jones, an architect of great talent. Even the queen and the princess-royal took part, and devoted several days to rehearsing the dances and situations and preparing costumes.

The object of this masque was to deliver presents to [138]the newly-created Prince of Wales. The court ladies personated nymphs of the principal rivers that belonged to the estates of their husbands or fathers, and eight of the handsomest nobleman attended these river nymphs as Tritons.

Prince Charles appeared with a dozen young ladies of his own age and size. They were daughters of lords or barons, and personated the naiads of springs and fountains.

The prince, as Zephyr, wore a short robe of green satin, embroidered in gold; silver wings were attached to his shoulders, and a garland of flowers encircled his brow; on his right arm, which was bare, the queen had clasped a valuable diamond bracelet.

The naiads wore pale blue-satin tunics, embroidered in silver; their hair hung in loose tresses, and water-lilies crowned their heads. These children danced a ballet,—Prince Charles always occupying the centre of a group,—which was enthusiastically applauded by the whole court.

Prince Charles's next duty was to offer to his brother, the Prince of Wales, the queen's present, which consisted of a jewelled sword, valued at four thousand pounds, attached to a scarf of her majesty's own work. He also presented a gold trident to the king as ruler of the ocean. This presentation was made during an address by one of the Tritons.

Her majesty was then invited to descend from the throne and dance her ballet with her water-nymphs. This was succeeded by another dance of the little naiads, and the entertainment concluded with the queen's quadrille. The summer morning had dawned when the gay party dispersed.

A.D. 1612. Two years later the Prince of Wales, that youth of eighteen, who was the joy of his parents and the [139]pride of the whole nation, was attacked with the worst and most malignant form of typhus fever, which resulted in his death on the 5th of November, 1612.

It was the anniversary of the Gunpowder Plot, and the procession of grotesque figures presented a strange contrast, as they swarmed around St. James's Palace, to the sad scene that was enacted within. When at last young Henry's death was announced, loud lamentations filled the air, and those who had left their homes to mingle with the festivities of the day returned bowed down with grief.

It was many months before the poor queen recovered from the shock produced by the death of her dearly-beloved boy, and she was still so depressed when the marriage of her daughter was solemnized that she was scarcely fit to be present. However, she aroused herself for that occasion; but the reaction was so great after the departure of the princess from England that she was ordered to Bath by her physicians. The change proved of great benefit, and by the end of the summer her majesty had regained her health and spirits.

Sometimes she shot at the deer from a stand. On one occasion she missed her aim, and hit the king's favorite hound. No one dared to announce the dreadful accident to his majesty, but he discovered the dead animal, and stormed so outrageously that it was many minutes before he could be informed whose hand had sent the deadly arrow. He was instantaneously mollified, and not only sent his beloved spouse a most affectionate message, but followed it with a jewel worth two thousand pounds, pretending it was a legacy to her from his dear, dead dog.

A.D. 1614. A visit from her brother, the King of Denmark, gave the queen a great deal of pleasure. His sole object in going to England was to see her, whom he [140]loved very dearly. He travelled incognito, and although one of the queen's attendants recognized him after his arrival at the palace, and told his sister of his presence, she would not believe it until he stole up behind her chair and gave her a kiss. The king, who was travelling through the country, was summoned home forthwith to receive his royal guest, and on his return there was a fortnight of hunting, bear-baiting, hawking, plays, and feasts. Just before his departure the King of Denmark entertained the English court at his own expense with the finest display of fireworks that had ever been witnessed in their country. After this visit Queen Anne never saw her brother again, though she corresponded with him until her death.

It was while King James was on a visit to his native land, where he went for the purpose of establishing parish schools, that his wife's health began to fail. Three years previously her physicians had treated her for dropsy, from which she had never entirely recovered, and now a dreadful cough was added to the other malady. She was hastily removed to Hampton Court, where she was tenderly cared for. After his return, the king went to visit his wife two or three times a week, when he was well enough to do so, but his health was by no means good, for he had gout in his knees.

A.D. 1618. About this time the poor sick queen received a most touching appeal from Sir Walter Raleigh, whose death-sentence was about to be carried into effect. It was written in verse, and ended thus:—

"Save him who would have died for your defence!

Save him whose thoughts no treason ever tainted."

Queen Anne interceded for Sir Walter in vain, though she asked as a personal favor that his life might be spared,



[143]for he was beheaded on the 29th of October, 1618. It is not reported how her majesty bore the news of Sir Walter's death; but her own was so near at hand that she probably viewed all affairs of this world with calmness and resignation, and turned her thoughts to the future state.

King James was not with his wife during her last moments, but Prince Charles kneeled at her bedside and received her dying blessing. She was conscious to the end, and when the Bishop of London prayed, he said: "Madame, make a sign that your majesty is one with your God, and long to be with him." She held up her hands, and when one failed she raised the other until both dropped, and she was no more.

The royal corpse was taken to Somerset House, where it lay in state for three days, and was then carried to the grave by ten knights, followed by most of the nobility then sojourning in London. The Countess of Arundel was chief lady mourner, and walked between the Duke of Lenox and the Marquis of Hamilton. All the ladies of the royal household came after, and as each one was enveloped in from twelve to sixteen yards of heavy black cloth, it was difficult for them to walk even at a funeral gait. Prince Charles preceded the funeral car, which was drawn by six horses, and the Archbishop of Canterbury walked by his side. The queen's riding horse was led by one of the officers of her household, and half a dozen heralds carried banners and flags bound with crepe just behind the pall.

Queen Anne of Denmark died in the forty-sixth year of her age, and was buried at Westminster Abbey. She left two children, one who became Charles I. of England, and the other was Elizabeth, Queen of Bohemia. [144]


(A.D 1609-1669.)

Henrietta Maria, wife of Charles I., was the youngest child of Henry IV. of France, and his second wife, Marie de Medicis.

A.D. 1609. She was born at Louvre in 1609, and Madame de Monglat, the royal governess, took charge of her, as she had done of all her brothers and sisters from the time of their births.

This princess had a grand baptism, no less a person than the pope's nuncio acting as sponsor. The name given to her was Henrietta Marie, but it became anglicized when she was so young that we must speak of her as she was known during the greater and more important part of her existence.

She was unfortunate in having a mother who was so weak-minded, petulant, and bigoted as to be quite incapable of instilling into her children the wise principles that they needed to fit them for the battle of life.

The little Henrietta was but six months old when her father was killed by Ravaillac; and her first appearance in public was made on the occasion of his funeral. She was carried in the arms of Madame de Monglat in the doleful procession, and her baby hands sprinkled the murdered



[147]corpse with holy water, according to the national custom in Normandy.

The coronation of Louis XIII. followed close upon his father's assassination; but in consequence of his extreme youth his mother was appointed queen-regent, and civil war never ceased to rage in France while she continued in power.

The royal children were kept at Fontainebleau, safe from the disturbances that were going on in Paris. It was the beautiful daughter of Madame de Monglat who superintended the toilet and daily life of little Henrietta, and the child loved her so dearly that she called her Mamanga, an Italian pet name, meaning mamma, and learned from the lips of Marie de Medicis, who was a native of Italy.

The religious education of the little princess was guided by a Carmelite nun, whom she visited at stated intervals during her childhood. She and her little brother, Duke Gaston, who studied together, were taught music, painting, and some of the lighter branches, but were never put to any solid work; and later in life Henrietta often lamented her slight knowledge of history, saying that all her lessons of human character were learned from her own sad experience. She was a beautiful child, very much spoiled and flattered, and frequently summoned from the nursery to appear at public entertainments. When she was but six years old her mother took her to Bordeaux to witness the departure of her eldest sister, Elizabeth, to become the wife of the King of Spain, and the arrival of Anne of Austria, the Spanish bride of Louis XIII.

About six years after her husband's death, France had become so desolated by the civil wars brought on by unwise government, that the queen-regent was imprisoned at the Castle of Blois, and the boy king of France assumed the power. [148]Princess Henrietta shared her mother's imprisonment for three years. At the expiration of that time she was present at the marriage of her sister Christine to the Duke of Savoy, and this event was succeeded by a reconciliation between Marie de Medicis and the young king. This was brought about by her almoner, who afterwards became Cardinal Richelieu, and thenceforward her influence in the government of France was greater than ever.

A.D. 1625. When the Princess Henrietta was sixteen years old James I. sent Lord Kensington to France on a secret mission to find out whether her hand could be obtained for his son Charles, who had by that time become the most elegant and accomplished prince in Europe.

The queen-mother was delighted with the prospects of such a match for her daughter, but would give no decided answer until the girl herself had been consulted.

It was not long before every one at the French court knew the object of Kensington's visit, and the ladies crowded around the handsome Englishman to question him about the Prince of Wales, and to examine the miniature of the royal gentleman, which the ambassador wore suspended from a ribbon around his neck.

Etiquette forbade the princess even to mention her royal suitor, much less to look at the picture she was dying to behold. But, remembering that the lady at whose house the ambassador sojourned had been in her service, Henrietta went to her and begged her to borrow the miniature, that she might feast her eyes on it as long as she pleased. This was done, and the young lady blushingly gazed upon the face of her future husband, and expressed her entire satisfaction with his appearance.

Kensington lost no time in reporting her little stratagem; it was his intention to promote the alliance between Prince Charles and Princess Henrietta, so he expatiated on the



[151]beauty, graces, and accomplishments of the former to the ladies of the French court, and wrote to England about the princess: "She is the sweetest creature in France and the loveliest thing in nature. Her growth is little short of her age, and her wisdom infinitely beyond it. She dances as well as I ever saw any one; she has a wonderful voice, and sings admirably."

When it was ascertained that the marriage would be agreeable to both royal families, the Earl of Carlisle joined Kensington for the purpose of preparing the treaty.

Then the pope raised an objection on the score of religion; for he did not believe the Catholic princess could be happy with a Protestant, husband in a country where her co-religionists had been persecuted.

However, the queen mother had set her heart on the marriage; so after a great deal of debate it was agreed that Henrietta and all her attendants should be made welcome, and should have liberty to observe their religion in England; that she should renounce all claim to the French throne, and that her children should be brought up under her care until their thirteenth year.

A.D. 1625. As soon as the treaty was signed King James ordered all persons imprisoned for religion to be released, fines levied against Catholics to be returned, and the execution of convicted papists to be stopped. This was the origin of all the opposition of the English parliament to the Stuart monarchs.

King James died before the marriage took place. The ceremony was performed at Notre Dame, a prince of the house of Guise representing the royal groom. The Duke of Buckingham, with a splendid train of English nobles, met the bridal party at the church door, in order to escort the young Queen of England home.

The whole court and royal family of France prepared to [152]accompany the bride to the coast in magnificent style; but at the last moment Louis XIII. was prevented by illness from travelling, and the entire retinue were detained for two weeks at Compeigne by a dangerous malady which attacked Marie de Medicis.

Charles I. was at Canterbury when his bride arrived in England, but he hastened to Dover to meet her as soon as the tidings were brought him. She was at breakfast when he was announced, but arose promptly and ran down stairs to meet him. She would have knelt and kissed his hand, but he drew her towards him and pressed her in his arms. Then the bride attempted to recite a little speech that she had prepared, but her courage failed, and she burst into tears. Charles treated her very kindly, drew her gently aside, and soothed her with loving and tender expressions.

The weeping girl was soon reassured, her dark eyes brightened, and she conversed freely with her royal lover. Then she presented all her French attendants by name,—"Mamanga," now Madame St. George, being the principal of her ladies.

The royal party left Dover the same day, and stopped at Canterbury, where all the English ladies of the queen's household were assembled to be presented to their royal mistress. It was in the open air on a June morning that Henrietta held her first court. The king assisted her to alight from her carriage, and after the presentation a magnificent feast was served.

The royal pair entered London by the river Thames, hundreds of beautiful barges forming a procession, which was greeted by thundering salutes from the navy. That evening the bells rang till midnight, bonfires blazed on every side, and rejoicing was kept up for several days.

King Charles opened his parliament with his bride seated beside him on the throne, and soon after retired for



[155]several weeks to Hampton Court, because the plague was raging so dreadfully in London.

The young queen was very attractive at this time. She was of medium height, but possessed a beautiful figure, her complexion was fine, face oval, eyes large, dark, and sparkling. Her hair was black, her teeth handsome, her forehead, nose, and mouth large, but well-formed.

The king loved his little wife devotedly, and gave her the pet name of Mary,—a very unpopular one to English lads; but Charles declared that his people would soon forget their prejudice against it for the sake of the blessings the present bearer of it would bring them.

Before many months the French attendants became objects of jealousy and dislike to the king, and notwithstanding the agreement that formed part of the marriage treaty he determined to get rid of them. Not only was it objectionable to the king that his wife should have mass celebrated in the palace, but his own attendants found fault with this arrangement, and Father Sancy, the queen's confessor, made himself obnoxious by insisting upon the establishment of a Roman Catholic chapel. Besides, Henrietta was so thoroughly under the influence of her French household that King Charles feared she would never become attached to him or his country. He thoroughly disliked Madame St. George, who was always thrusting herself forward, and interfering between him and his wife; but the most serious cause of displeasure that Charles I. had against the French attendants was that they influenced the queen in her refusal to share his coronation.

This was an unpardonable piece of ignorance and bigotry, injurious to the king and dangerous to herself; for it was charged against her in later years that she had never been recognized as the consort of Charles I.

A.D. 1626. The king was therefore crowned at West- [156]minster Abbey alone, his young and lovely wife refusing even to be present at the ceremony. This obstinacy was a death-blow to her popularity, and increased the difficulties that surrounded her husband. The Duke of Buckingham, who was in Paris, was notified that the French attendants would be sent home, and the king wrote a letter to his brother-in-law, Louis XIII., in justification of the proceedings.

One day King Charles entered his wife's apartment at Whitehall, and found her attendants dancing about, and behaving in a manner that he considered disrespectful to the queen, so taking her quietly by the hand, he led her into a side room and closed the door. Presently an order was received bidding her majesty's French servants, young and old, to repair at once to Somerset House, there to await the king's orders. The women wept and lamented as though they had been summoned to execution; but the guard cleared them all out of the queen's apartments and bolted the doors after them.

Meanwhile a stormy scene was being enacted between the royal couple. Henrietta flew into a rage when her husband told her what he had done, and rushed to the window to bid farewell to her train. The king drew her away, telling her "to be satisfied, for it must be so." Then she broke the panes with her fist, and his majesty was obliged to hold her wrists until her temper abated.

She was not permitted to see her country-people again, excepting her nurse, her dresser, and Madame de la Tremouille,—those three being retained in her service.

In a few days the king repaired to Somerset House, and in a set speech informed the French household of the necessity of dismissing them to their own country, and promised them their wages with gratuities to the amount of twenty-two thousand pounds. [157]These people had robbed the queen to such an extent that she was actually left without a change of linen, and had, besides, contracted debts in her name.

It was not until the following month, when the king sent a body of stout yeomen to turn the late attendants out of Somerset House by the shoulders, if they would not go otherwise, that they finally departed.

The royal couple had been married just one year when all the French attendants, including Father Sancy, returned to their native land.

The queen attributed her husband's turning off her household so summarily to the influence and advice of Buckingham, whom she disliked thoroughly.

She became so restless and unhappy that she wanted to go back to France, and wrote her mother to that effect, repeating the grievances of which the banished household had already given an exaggerated account.

The Duke de Bassompierre, a man of sense and spirit, and an old friend of Henry IV., was sent to England to inquire into the wrongs of which Henrietta complained. He found her dreadfully incensed against Buckingham, the prime minister, with whom she had had a violent quarrel, though she knew scarcely any English, and he very little French. Nevertheless he managed to make her comprehend him when he told her "to beware how she behaved, for in England queens had had their heads cut off before now."

Henrietta assured de Bassompierre that the prime minister was constantly making mischief between her and her husband, because he was jealous of her influence.

Bassompierre had several private interviews with the young queen, the king, and Buckingham, which resulted in a complete reconciliation. But her majesty was displeased because her father's old friend neither flattered nor spoiled [158]her, and so she fell out with him, and by the expiration of a fortnight the reconciled parties were more angry with each other than ever before.

The new subject of quarrel was the king's refusal to permit more than three chaplains for the performance of the Catholic service in the palace. Henrietta was too young to reason sensibly about her husband's affairs, and she was such a fervent Catholic that she could bear no opposition concerning her religion from her Protestant husband. Her position was an exceedingly difficult one, and all the errors she committed were the result of her youth and inexperience.

The French ambassador had to begin his work all over again; and so adroitly did he manage, that in the course of a few days he had arranged all the disputed points. It was agreed that the queen should have two chapels built for her, one at St. James's, the other at Somerset House.

A bishop, ten priests, a confessor, and ten musicians were to be furnished, as well as ladies of the bed-chamber, a clear-starcher, two physicians, an apothecary, a surgeon, a grand-chamberlain, a squire, a secretary, a gentleman-usher, a valet, and a baker, all from her majesty's native land.

Even then the queen was not satisfied. She continued to play the vixen to such an extent that, regardless of her rank, Bassoinpierre took it upon himself to administer a bit of plain language. She had been flattered into believing that all her little tyrannies were quite becoming to a pretty queen, but she was now told that she behaved unlike a true wife, and that her conduct should be reported to her family in France.

Henrietta was surprised at this honest dealing; but the effect was wholesome, and secured for her nearly eighteen years of happiness with her husband. [159]Instead of being received with honors on his return to France, de Bassompierre was frowned upon because he had avoided extreme measures in his capacity of mediator, and because he had spoken the truth too plainly.

Shortly after a war broke out between England and France; but it did not in the least disturb Queen Henrietta's tranquillity, for she and her husband were never on better terms.

But the French nation despised Charles I., and considered his wife a martyr and a victim. This led to the belief in an imposture of a crazy girl, who, calling herself the persecuted Queen of England, presented herself at a convent in Limoges, and claimed the protection of the nuns. She declared that she had escaped from England because she was persecuted on account of the true faith. She described the court and household of the queen so correctly that she was eagerly listened to by the whole neighborhood, who flocked to see her. Louis XIII., who knew how happily and peacefully his sister was then living, was so incensed at this imposition that he had the girl imprisoned, and she was heard of no more.

A.D. 1628. The sudden death of Buckingham occurred when Henrietta was just eighteen years old, and she was thus rid of a person who had never ceased to be an object of dislike to her.

Queen Henrietta had a great fancy for dwarfs; so, at an entertainment given to her once when she was making a progress through her kingdom, an immense venison pasty was placed in the centre of the table. The crust was removed and Geoffrey Hudson, a little man just eighteen inches high, stepped out, prostrated himself before her majesty, and asked to be taken into her service. His request was immediately complied with, and he was employed to carry state messages of slight importance. He was not [160]the only dwarf at courts for there was a married pair of these little monsters besides.

A.D. 1630. The queen had a son born at St. James's Palace in 1630, who succeeded to the throne as Charles II.

A Welsh nurse was provided for the royal infant, because it was the custom that the first words uttered by any Prince of Wales should be Welsh.

He could not have been a handsome child, for his mother wrote of him to her friend, Madame St. George: "He is so ugly that I am ashamed of him; but his size and fatness supply the want of beauty."

A.D. 1632. The royal family was increased by the birth of a daughter a couple of years later. She was named Mary, baptized, as her brother had been, according to the form prescribed in the Book of Common Prayer, and placed under the care of Catherine, Lady Stanhope.

Henrietta's unpopularity was increased to an alarming degree on account of her laying the corner-stone of a Capuchin chapel, in the courtyard of Somerset House. She had already commenced one at St. James's; and when the Roman Catholic service was celebrated in them, about two years later, it was most injurious to the prosperity of the king, although it had been agreed that these chapels should be built. Henrietta refused to take part in her husband's coronation in Scotland as she had done in England, consequently he went alone.

A.D. 1633 On his return another prince was added to the family, and baptized James. His title was the Duke of York. He was a handsome baby, and his father destined him for the navy. Henrietta was a fond mother, and devoted much of her time to the nursery. Etiquette prevented a queen from entertaining guests with her voice, but its magnificent strains often filled the galleries of the palace when she sang to her infants.

A.D. 1638. [161]In 1638 King Charles incurred the displeasure of Cardinal Richelieu by offering a home in England to Marie de Medicis. This cardinal owed much of his grandeur to the queen-mother of France, but when she was in distress he turned his back on her.

A.D. 1641. Marie de Medicis prolonged her stay in England nearly three years. During that period she witnessed the riots and disturbances that led to the execution of the Earl of Strafford,—an event that seriously grieved Charles I. and his wife, and that, in the end, was disastrous to both.

In the midst of these scenes of terror, Mary, the princess-royal, who was just ten years of age, was publicly espoused, at Whitehall chapel, to the son of the Prince of Orange, a boy of eleven.

The queen-mother had been so maligned by the rioters that she was terrified for her personal safety, and insisted on departing forthwith for Holland. She was escorted, by the king's orders, as far as Dover, and about the same time Charles I. set out on a journey to Scotland.

During his absence the queen's confessor, Father Phillips, was summoned several times by parliament, for examination, and ominous threats were made regarding the establishment of Capuchins at Somerset House. Signs of civil war were daily becoming more numerous and more marked, Sir Edward Nicholas, the king's private secretary, wrote a letter urging his majesty to dismiss the monks at the next session of parliament; but he would take no decided steps in opposition to his wife's religion without consulting her. The consequence was that an infuriated mob destroyed the Capuchin chapel a year later.

A.D. 1642. Among the queen's attendants was Lady Carlisle, who, while appearing loyal, was acting the part of [162]a spy, and reporting every incident of the royal household to the Roundhead leaders.

These Roundheads were Puritans, and it was Queen Henrietta herself who named them, because their hair was clipped so close and short that their heads looked like balls, and formed a marked contrast to the flowing locks of the courtiers.

When parliament informed the queen that she must surrender her children into their hands until her husband's return, lest she should make papists of them, she refused, but left them at Oatlands and went to live at Hampton Court, hoping thus to keep her five little ones together and remove all cause of complaint. Her youngest child, Henry, was then only a few months old.

Henrietta knew that she was closely watched, and had reason to fear that her children might at any moment be seized and taken away from her; so, like a true mother, she took every precaution to prevent it. She had a ship ready to receive them at Portsmouth, and a hundred cavaliers with a supply of five horses at her disposal; but no attack was made.

The Irish rebellion broke out that autumn, attended with all the horrors of civil strife and religious persecution. The Roundheads accused Queen Henrietta of having encouraged the massacre, although there is no evidence of her having done so.

When the king returned from Scotland he was received with every mark of loyalty. His family went to meet him, and the populace assembled to greet their sovereign. He entered the metropolis on horseback, the Prince of Wales rode by his side, and the queen, with her younger children, followed in an open carriage.

While in Scotland the king had ascertained that five members of the house of commons were traitors; so, taking [163]advantage of his popular reception on his return, he made up his mind to arrest them. He confided in no one but the queen. When he left her on the morning that he had fixed for the arrest, he said: "If you find one hour elapse without hearing ill news of me, you will see-me, when I return, the master of my kingdom."


Queen Henrietta watched the clock anxiously until the hour had passed, then turning to the treacherous Lady Carlisle she exultingly exclaimed: "Rejoice with me, for at this hour the king is, as I have reason to believe, master of his realm, for Pym and his confederates are arrested before now."

For this indiscretion King Charles paid dearly. He had been stopped at the entrance to the house of commons by a large number of persons, who presented petitions which he stood to read and discuss.

This delay afforded Lady Carlisle ample time to dispatch one of her agents to inform the persons marked for arrest. They fled just as Charles entered the house, and their party organized a plan of resistance on the spot. [164]Insurrections followed, and the king and queen retired to Hampton Court to watch the result. Parliament then warned all the nobility to arm, and prevent the king from going further. King Charles was surprised; for he had not the least idea that any restraint would be put upon his personal freedom.

The queen then proposed that she should go to Holland, under pretence of conveying the princess-royal to her young spouse, the Prince of Orange, but in reality for the purpose of selling her jewels to provide the king with means of defence. No opposition was made to her departure, and the Prince of Orange received her most cordially. Not so the Dutch burgomasters, who treated her with marked disrespect at first; but by the end of one year she had so won them over by her tact, diplomacy, and courteous manners that she had raised upwards of two million pounds sterling, all of which had been forwarded to her husband, who had raised his standard at Nottingham and commenced a warlike struggle.

Meanwhile the Princess of Orange pursued her studies in Holland, where she soon won the affections of the people, and her alliance proved a most happy one.

A.D. 1643. Queen Henrietta set out on her return to England just a year after she had left. She sailed in an English ship, accompanied by eleven smaller ones filled with stores and ammunition for the king. The fleet was commanded by the Dutch admiral Von Tromp.

A tremendous gale blew them about for nearly a fortnight, the travellers suffering all the torments of sea-sickness, and expecting every moment to go to the bottom.

The queen behaved bravely on this trying occasion, and cheerfully replied to the wailing and lamentations of her ladies: "Comfort yourselves, mes chères; queens of England are never drowned." The poor priests on board were as [165]sick as the rest, but they had to listen to the confessions of the terrified ladies and gentlemen, who bawled out their sins, regardless of the presence of others, in a way that must have been truly amusing.

At last the queen landed safely at a port near the Hague, having lost two of her ships. After two days' rest she again set sail, and made a quick voyage to Burlington, where, guarded by a thousand cavaliers on land, and Von Tromp at sea, she went ashore. The next morning, at dawn, five ships-of-war, that had entered the bay during the night, began a cannonade on the house where the queen was sleeping. She was obliged to rise in haste, put on her clothes, and seek shelter in a ditch some distance from the town of Burlington. Bullets fell thick about her as she hurried on foot to the place of shelter, and one of her servants was killed. Nevertheless, when Henrietta remembered that her favorite lap-dog had been left behind, she ran back, hastily climbed the stairs to her bed-chamber, caught up the animal, and carried it off in safety. One ball grazed the edge of the ditch where the royal party were concealed, and covered them with earth and stones. At night the attacking ships retreated, much to her majesty's relief, for she then remained quietly for ten days in the neighborhood of Burlington.

While there she distributed arms to those gentlemen who seemed loyally disposed, and thus gained many friends for the king.

A captain of one of the ships that had bombarded the queen's house on the morning after her arrival was caught on shore, tried by a military tribunal, and sentenced to be hung. The queen happened to meet the procession when the prisoner was being conducted to execution, and inquired what was the matter. She was told that King Charles's loyal subjects were about to punish a man who had aimed at her. [166]"Ah," replied the queen, "but he did not kill me, and he shall not be put to death on my account." The captain was then set at liberty, and so deeply was he touched by Henrietta's generosity that he came over to the royal cause, and persuaded several of his shipmates to do likewise.

A.D. 1644. Previous to the battle of Newbury, so fatal to his cause, Charles escorted his wife to Abington, and there this devoted couple parted never to meet again.

The queen was ill when the Earl of Essex advanced with his army to besiege the city in which she had taken refuge; but rising from her bed she escaped in disguise with one lady, one gentleman, and her confessor, leaving behind her an infant only a few weeks old.

She hid for two days in a hut by the roadside three miles from Exeter, and lay couched under a heap of rubbish when the parliamentary soldiers marched by. She heard them say "that they meant to carry the head of Henrietta to London, and receive for it a reward of fifty thousand crowns." As soon as they were gone she stole out of her hiding-place, and with her three companions travelled on to a wood, which became the rendezvous that night for all her faithful attendants. Geoffrey Hudson, the dwarf, was of the number, and everybody was in disguise.

The whole party pushed on to the coast and embarked on board a friendly Dutch vessel.

Meanwhile the king, by a series of victories, had fought his way to Exeter, where he hoped to see his dear Henrietta, but she had been gone several days when he arrived. He beheld his new baby—a princess—for the first time, and had her baptized under the name of Henrietta Anne, after her mother and her good aunt in France.

Queen Henrietta did not reach her native land without another trial; for her vessel was chased by a cruiser in the service of parliament, and several cannon balls fired at it. [167]The danger of being taken or sunk became so great that the queen took command of the vessel herself, had every sail set for speed, urged the pilot to keep straight on his course, and charged the captain to fire the powder magazine if escape were impossible. She was determined not to fall into the hands of her husband's enemies, and preferred death to the disgrace of being dragged captive to London.

However, she did not have to resort to such an extreme measure, for in a few hours she landed at Bretagne. Such a sorry spectacle did the queen and her attendants present that the natives took them for pirates and arose in arms against them; but no sooner were they convinced that it was the daughter of their beloved King Henry IV. who had sought refuge among them, than they speedily took measures to supply all her wants, and provided her with equipages to convey her to the baths of Bourbon, where she hoped to regain health and strength.

Anne of Austria, who was then queen-regent, sent her confidential lady-of-honor to Henrietta, with offers of all the assistance it was in the power of France to bestow, and supplied her with liberal sums of money; but Queen Henrietta stripped herself of every farthing she could command to send to her husband, over whose misfortunes she wept constantly.

Queen Henrietta was met on her return to Paris, and most affectionately welcomed by the queen-regent and the little King Louis IV., who escorted her to the Louvre, where a luxurious suite of apartments had been prepared for her. They treated her with the consideration due to a queen, and, as a daughter of France, she was supplied with the liberal income of twelve thousand crowns per month.

But she deprived herself even of necessary comforts in order that she might keep her suffering husband supplied. A few days after her arrival in her native land she removed [168]to St. Germains, a country-palace that the queen-regent had placed at her disposal. There she lived in retirement, and her wants being less, she was enabled to save larger sums to send to England.

The affairs of King Charles had grown from bad to worse; and with his usual thoughtfulness for his family, he instructed his sons to escape from a country where neither he nor they could hope for protection.

A.D. 1645. Accordingly both the Prince of Wales and the Duke of York made their way to Paris, where they spent some time with their mother, then joined the English fleet that had forsaken the Cromwell party, and was lying off the coast of Holland.

The same year Lady Morton, who had been left at Exeter with the infant Henrietta Anne, made her escape, disguised as a beggar, and, with the child in her arms, travelled on until she placed her in her mother's lap. The queen's heart was gladdened at the sight of her little one, whom she covered with kisses, and called "child of benediction."

She had made up her mind that this little princess should become a Catholic, and for that reason appointed Père Gamache to instruct her.

Now, so long as the royal family of France were rich, Queen Henrietta shared their prosperity, and was treated with the utmost respect and consideration, but when their own civil wars reduced them to a state of destitution she had poverty added to her other troubles.

She behaved nobly when her sister-in-law, Anne of Austria, was in danger from the fury of her own subjects, and left her quiet retreat at St. Germains to share her danger in Paris during the battles of the Fronde and the Barricades. It was she who acted as peacemaker between the queen-regent and her people, and she had become such [169]a favorite in France that after much trouble and many privations she finally succeeded in restoring order.

A.D. 1648. But the Christmas of 1648, before this was accomplished, Cardinal de Retz, who was one of the principal leaders of the Fronde, but a good friend to Queen Henrietta, found her shut up in an apartment of the Louvre with little Henrietta, without any fire, although it was a cold, snowy day. The sorrowing mother had kept the four-year old princess in bed lest she should suffer from the cold, but both were without food. The cardinal supplied the necessary comforts forthwith, and on the same day represented to the parliament of Paris the distress in which he had discovered the daughter of their former king. His eloquence was the outpouring of a kind heart, and met with an immediate response, for a subsidy of twenty thousand livres was instantly voted for the destitute queen.

Then she wrote to Lord Fairfax in England, asking his assistance, that she might see her husband once more. This letter was delivered to the house of commons, and contemptuously thrown aside, with the remark "that the writer had been voted guilty of high treason in 1643."

Thus ended all hope of being reunited to the husband whose afflictions she shared and for whose sake she would willingly have died. Added to this was the suspense the queen endured while the civil strife in Paris and its neighborhood rendered the passage of couriers impossible.

King Charles might well have escaped from England and joined his wife, but nothing could induce him to enter France as a supplicant sovereign. He preferred to suffer and struggle alone, through four long years of insult and abuse,—most shocking to us of the present day to read about.

The Roundheads grew so powerful that, with Oliver [170]Cromwell for their leader, they became a body of ruffians, who either thrust into a dungeon or expelled any of their band who evinced the least mark of favor towards the king.

Through treachery Charles I. had fallen a prisoner in their hands. They showed him no mercy; they granted him no justice. A handful of self-appointed judges went through the mockery of a trial, and condemned their unfortunate sovereign to the block.

On the day before the execution Princess Elizabeth and the Duke of Gloucester, the only royal children who remained in England, were admitted to their father's prison to bid him farewell. They both sobbed passionately. King Charles drew them to his bosom with words of consolation, and solemnly blessed them.

He told the princess not to grieve for him, for his was a glorious death,—for the laws and religion of the land; advised her what books to read; bade her to forgive his enemies, as he hoped God would, and charged her to be obedient to her mother, and to tell her that his love for her would be the same to the last.

Then taking little Gloucester on his knee, he said: "Sweetheart, now will they cut off thy father's head. Heed, my child, what I say: they will cut off my head, and perhaps make thee king; but, mark what I say, you must not be a king so long as your brothers Charles and James live; therefore, I charge you, do not be made a king by them."

Earnestly looking up into his father's face, the boy replied: "I will be torn in pieces first." This unexpected answer pleased his majesty, who with a few more words of advice fervently kissed his children, and ordered them to be taken away. They sobbed aloud, and the king turned away as they passed out, and leaned his head against the window trying to repress his tears. [171]While this painful interview was taking place Cromwell and his gang of ruffians sat in secret conclave to determine upon the hour of their victim's death; and some of them swore later that it was only violent threats on the part of their leader that forced them to place their signatures to the fatal warrant.

The noble and dignified bearing of the king as he ascended the scaffold was noticed by all who saw him, and the populace, who were kept at a distance by a dense mass of soldiers, wept amidst their blessings and prayers for the martyr king.

Charles made a short speech, saying that "if he had been a despot he might have remained their sovereign; but he died to preserve the liberties of the people of England." Some one touched the axe while he was speaking. "Have a care of the axe!" he exclaimed, "if the edge be spoiled it will be the worse for me."

Then his executioner kneeled before him and asked forgiveness. Charles drew himself up with proud dignity and replied;—"No! I forgive no subject of mine who comes deliberately to shed my blood."

He then said a short prayer, raised his eyes to heaven, then placed his head upon the block. It was severed with one blow, as a cry of agony arose from the horrified multitude.

Queen Henrietta did not hear of the dreadful fate that had overtaken her husband for several days; and when at last it was communicated to her, she stood motionless as a statue, without words or tears.

The visit of the Duchess de Vendôme, whom the queen tenderly loved, produced a change in the afflicted widow, who burst into a passionate fit of weeping at the tender words of sympathy expressed by her friend. She called [172]herself the most miserable woman on the face of the earth, and resolved to retire with a few of her ladies to the Carmelite Convent in Paris. She well knew that for the future life could contain nothing but bitterness for her, and said: "I have lost a crown, but that I had long ceased to regret; it is my husband for whom I grieve,—the good, just, wise, virtuous man, so worthy of my love and that of his subjects."

She named herself La malheureuse reine, and mourned for King Charles to the day of her death.

A.D. 1649. Queen Henrietta was not long permitted to enjoy the peaceful retirement of the convent; for her son, the Prince of Wales, determined to return to England, and desired to consult his mother about it. She therefore met him at St. Germains in the summer of 1649, and afterwards returned with him to her former apartments at the Louvre.

In the following autumn, accompanied by his brother James, Duke of York, Charles went to the Isle of Jersey, where he was proclaimed King of Great Britain. Scotland acknowledged him next, and then followed the scenes of blood in Ireland, under the leadership of Cromwell, more horrible than any that had ever been witnessed in the world before.

Charles was absent more than two years; and while he was contesting for his hereditary rights his young brother and sister, who were still prisoners in England, were treated very harshly by the republicans.

A.D. 1650. In the September of 1650 Princess Elizabeth died of a malignant fever.

Cromwell had established a strong military despotism in the British Islands; and when Queen Henrietta demanded of him the payment of her dower, he replied: "That she had never been recognized as Queen-Consort of Great [173]Britain by the people, consequently she had no right to a dower."

This was because she had refused, on account of her religious bigotry, to be crowned with the king.

But the usurper did her a great favor when he allowed the young Duke of Gloucester to return to her. The permit said: "That Henry Stuart, third son of the late Charles I., had leave to transport himself beyond seas."

Queen Henrietta treated her sons most harshly because they refused to become Catholics, and adhered to the Episcopal church; in consequence a great deal of ill-feeling and enmity had grown up between her and them, which at last drove them from her.

The young Duke of Gloucester went to Holland to live with his sister, the Princess of Orange, whose husband had died of small-pox a short time before she offered her brother an asylum.

Queen Henrietta remained at the Palais Royal with her youngest child as a guest of the queen-regent.

A.D. 1658. At last, in 1658, Cromwell died, and two years later Charles II. was restored to the throne of England, without the shedding of a single drop of blood. His brother, the young Duke of Gloucester, had accompanied Charles to England, where four months after the Restoration he died of small-pox.

A.D. 1660. In October of 1660 the Duke of York met Queen Henrietta and his youngest sister at Calais, where they embarked for England in grand state. The vessels were all decked with gay flags, and as each one discharged her cannon in regular order the noise was so great that it could be distinctly heard at Dover. The channel was so calm that its surface looked like a mirror. Not a breath of wind was stirring, and it was two days before the English fleet could accomplish the passage that [174]usually took three or four hours. Fortunately the Duke of York had provided a sumptuous banquet for his mother, sister, and their whole retinue, which passed a few hours pleasantly, and saved the travellers from hunger.

When the queen reached Dover, Charles II. went on board the vessel to welcome her, and conducted her to Dover Castle, where a pleasant surprise awaited her.

Not only was a magnificent supper spread, but every member of the royal family of Stuart had assembled to receive Queen Henrietta, who once more had the satisfaction of embracing each of her children in turn.

For the moment she was happy, surrounded by those she loved; but after she reached London she was overcome by the deepest sorrow. The sight of the apartments once occupied by her husband agonized her, and it wrung her heart to look upon the spot where he had suffered and died. She sank into the deepest melancholy, and would shut herself up for hours at a time, denying admittance to any of her ladies.

Life in England became insupportable to the afflicted queen, and she determined to return to France.

A.D. 1661. In the evening of New Year's Day she gave an audience to those who desired to bid her farewell, and then retired to Hampton Court.

As the Princess Henrietta was engaged to be married to Philippe, the Duke of Orleans, parliament settled on her a liberal marriage-portion, and by the middle of January she sailed, with her mother, for France.

Two months later the marriage between Princess Henrietta and the Duke of Orleans was solemnized at the Palais Royal; and when the young couple went to pass the summer at Fontainebleau, Queen Henrietta retired to her favorite château of Colombe, a few miles from Paris. The following year the Duke and Duchess of Orleans made her [175]a long visit, then accompanied her to Calais, where she embarked to return to England once more.

A.D. 1662. Charles II. had married Catharine of Braganza during his mother's absence, and the royal couple received Queen Henrietta affectionately, and welcomed her to Greenwich Palace. She remained with them until the summer, when Somerset House having been handsomely renovated, she set up her court there; but her health began to decline, and she sent for her son, the king, and told him that she could only regain strength in her native land. He urged her to repair to the Bourbon baths, though it grieved him sorely to part from his mother again.

A.D. 1665. She went first to her château of Colombe, where the King and Queen of France met and welcomed her, and after a short season of repose she proceeded to the baths of Bourbon.

A.D. 1669. But her health declined from year to year, and although her daughter and son-in-law were indefatigable in their loving attentions, and summoned the most celebrated physicians of Paris to her bedside, she expired suddenly and painlessly at midnight of August 31, 1669.

Charles II. and the Duke of York received the news with deep grief, and retired to Hampton Court, where they remained until all the mourning ceremonies were completed at Whitehall.

Louis XIV. ordered a general mourning to be observed throughout France for his aunt,—not because she was a queen of England so much as because she was the last child of Henry IV. of France. [176]


(A.D. 1638-1705.)

It was on St. Catharine's day that this princess was born, in the year 1638, and it was in honor of that saint that she was named. When she came into the world, Portugal was under the rule of Spain, and had been so for sixty years, not because the Portuguese were contented with the despotic laws that governed them, but because they did not feel strong enough to fight for liberty.

When a nation considers itself oppressed by tyrannical laws, secret organizations are sure to be formed for the purpose of shaking off the yoke in one way or another.

In all the principal towns of Portugal these patriotic associations were formed at the time we speak of, for the purpose of throwing off the Spanish yoke; and the period was rapidly approaching when their efforts were to be crowned with success.

It was to the Duke of Braganza, Catharine's father, the last of the old royal line, that the larger party looked with hope and confidence. Meanwhile, with a desire to keep clear of the watchful eye of his foes and the dangerous intrigues of his friends, the duke removed to his Palace of Villa Vicosa with his beloved wife, the Donna Luiza, and his two little sons. While living at that most charming spot, that has been justly named a terrestrial paradise, the [177]duchess added a daughter to her family circle,—the little Catharine, of whom we have spoken. She was baptized at the parish chapel during the following month, and her godfather was a Spanish grandee of high rank and enormous wealth. The ceremony was performed with great pomp, and gifts of considerable value were bestowed upon the little girl. She was such a pet in her family, that each birthday was the occasion of a sumptuous fête. On the second anniversary of her birth an incident occurred which connected the celebration of it with no less important a matter than the emancipation of Portugal from the Spanish yoke. On that day Don Gaspar Cortigno arrived at the Villa Vicosa, and requested an immediate interview with the duke. This being granted, he presented an appeal from his countrymen, urging the duke to declare himself their leader, and to accept the crown to which he was justly entitled.

A.D. 1640. The nobleman listened attentively to all that his visitor said; but he was at a loss for a reply, while, he thoughtfully considered his position. On the one hand was the Portuguese crown, which was his by inheritance, on the other the blessings of a happy home, with a charming, affectionate family, and the peaceful possession of estates, comprising not less than a third of the realm. Should he risk everything to embark upon an enterprise fraught with danger, perhaps ruin? He could not decide; but, like a dutiful husband, consulted Donna Luiza. Without a moment's hesitation, she replied: "This day our friends are assembled around us to celebrate the anniversary of the birth of our little Catharine; and who knows but this new guest may have been sent to certify to you that it is the will of Heaven, through especial grace, to invest you with that crown of which you have long been unjustly deprived by Spain. For my part I regard it as a happy [178]presage that he comes on such day." Then lifting up her daughter, and holding her before the duke, she added, "How can you find it in your heart to refuse to confer on this child the rank of a king's daughter?" That was enough; the father decided, though the statesman had faltered; ambition for his children won the Duke of Braganza's consent, and thenceforth he would devote his life to the welfare of his country.

A few days later he removed with his family to Lisbon, where he was proclaimed king, under the title of Juan IV. Then began a fierce struggle, in which many battles were fought and won by the Portuguese against their powerful enemy. They were fighting for freedom, and their desperate charges counterbalanced the superior numbers of Spain. In moments of discouragement and despondency Donna Luiza was always near to fill her husband's breast with courage and hope.

A.D. 1644. England immediately recognized Don Juan as sovereign of Portugal; but the pope refused to do so, and was imitated by all the Catholic courts of Europe, excepting France. Four years were spent in battling for the liberty which was won at last by a decisive overthrow of the Spanish forces in 1644.

Having accomplished this, Juan IV. sent Sabran as ambassador to England to negotiate a marriage between the Prince of Wales, who afterwards became Charles II., and his little daughter Catharine. The treasury of King Charles was so nearly empty at that time, that the liberal dower Juan was able to bestow upon the infanta would no doubt have been very acceptable, but there were other considerations. Catharine of Braganza was a Catholic; and as the difference of religion had created so much unhappiness between himself and his own wife, Charles I. hesitated to thrust the same domestic infelicity on his son, who was



[181]of course a Protestant. And so, for the time being, no decisive measures could be taken for the marriage.

A.D. 1656. Don Juan did not live long to enjoy the lofty position for which he had struggled so desperately; for he died towards the close of the year 1656, in the prime of life, but worn out with care and anxiety.

By her father's death Princess Catharine became an heiress of great wealth; for Don Juan left a will bequeathing to his daughter the island of Madeira, the city of Lanego, and the town of Moura, with all their territories and rents. She received other sources of income, besides, with the proviso that if she married in a foreign land, she was to relinquish all to the crown and receive the equivalent in money.

Donna Luiza carefully studied the aspect of affairs in other countries besides the one she ruled, and her penetration enabled her to foresee that the restoration of Charles II. to the throne of England was merely a matter of time. That being the case, she made up her mind to work for an alliance between that prince and her daughter, hoping thereby to strengthen the position of her own realm. All other proposals, therefore, for the hand of the infanta were regarded with disfavor.

The elder Princess Dowager of Orange was not so keen-sighted; for when Charles was sojourning at a village in Flanders, while he was still an exile, he fell in love with the Princess Henrietta, daughter of Frederick Henry, Prince of Orange, and would have married her, but the dowager declined the offer, saying, "that she saw no chance for the amendment of his fortunes."

A few months latter, when a deputation from parliament arrived with fifty thousand pounds for Prince Charles, and an invitation to return to England, the old lady could have bitten her tongue out for the blunder she had made, and endeavored to repair it. [182]But Charles was too indignant to listen to any of her overtures, or ever to forgive the insult she had offered him in his adversity.

A.D. 1660. Henrietta was extremely anxious to see her eldest son united in marriage with a princess of her own faith; so, once when she was on a visit to England, she manoeuvred until matters were brought to such a point that the Portuguese ambassador was authorized to interview the prince's lord chamberlain on the subject. The former important personage was no other than Don Francisco de Mello, the godfather of Catharine. He began by praising the virtues of the king, and added, "that it was time he should bestow himself in marriage, and that nothing ought to keep him single but the difficulty of finding a suitable consort."

The lord chamberlain, Earl of Manchester, assented. Thereupon Don Francisco continued: "There is in Portugal a princess, in her beauty, person, and age, very fit for the king, who would have a portion suitable to her birth and quality. She is a Catholic, to be sure, and would never depart from her religion; but she has none of that meddling activity which sometimes makes persons of any faith troublesome when they come into a country where another mode of worship than their own is practised. She has been bred under a wise mother, who has taught her not to interfere in state affairs, of which she is entirely ignorant." The ambassador concluded by informing the earl that he was authorized to propose the princess for a wife to the king, accompanied with offers such as no other power in Europe could make.

This conversation was duly reported to Charles, who sent to Don Francisco for further particulars. An early interview was granted the ambassador, who repeated what he had said to the lord chamberlain, and added, furthermore, [183]"that he was authorized to offer five hundred thousand pounds sterling in cash as a portion for the Infanta Catharine, besides the possession of Tangier, on the coast of Africa, which was to be made over to the crown of England forever. Free trade in the Brazil and the East Indies was to be granted to the English nation; and the island of Bombay, with its spacious bay, towns, and castles, was likewise to belong to them."

Charles was dazzled with such a brilliant offer, and hastened to consult Lord Clarendon, his prime minister, on the subject.

Clarendon refused to offer immediate advice, and asked, "whether his majesty had given up all thought of a Protestant wife."

Charles replied, "that he could not find one, except among his own subjects, and he had seen no one of their number, who had pleased him sufficiently for that purpose."

A secret meeting was then called of several members of his council, over which the king presided in person. He stated the business for which he had requested their presence, and pointed out the importance of Tangier for the benefit of trade on the Mediterranean sea.

One of the lords suggested the advisability of a Protestant queen. Charles asked "where he should find one?" Several German princesses were mentioned, whereupon he exclaimed, impatiently: "Odds fish! They are all dull and foggy; I cannot like one of them for a wife."

It was then unanimously agreed that a matrimonial treaty should be opened, with all possible secrecy, with Portugal.

Delighted with the success of his mission, Don Francisco de Mello offered to go back to his native land to complete the necessary arrangements. [184]The court of Lisbon was filled with rejoicing when the object of Don Francisco's return was announced. He was rewarded with the title of Count da Ponte, and sent back to England with full power to conclude the marriage.

A.D. 1661. It was late in January when the count again set foot in London. To his surprise, the whole aspect of affairs had changed, and he could not even obtain an interview with the king.

The reason for the change was this: The representatives of Spain knew well that it would redound to their disadvantage if an alliance between the royal houses of England and Portugal should be cemented; they therefore endeavored to prevent it. One of their number happened to be on terms of intimacy with Charles, and could, therefore, speak plainly on the subject of his prospective marriage.

His arguments made little impression until he dared to attack the princess herself; but when he affirmed that she was ugly, deformed, and delicate, the king began to fear that perhaps he had allowed himself to be too easily influenced. The Earl of Bristol was a particular enemy of Clarendon, and prided himself on throwing a wet blanket over every project that minister seemed to favor. The earl had just returned from a visit to Portugal, and corroborated every statement made by the Spanish envoy, merely for the sake of opposition. At the same time he drew a graphic picture of some of the Italian princesses he had met, and assured the king that if he would make his selection from their number, the Spanish government would agree to give the lady of his choice as large a portion as though she were of their royal blood.

As Charles was not in love with Catharine of Braganza, never having laid eyes on her, he was easily turned from his purpose, and broke off all negotiations with the Portuguese court. [185]But he did not abandon his intention to marry; and so despatched the Earl of Bristol to Parma to make minute inquiries as to the qualifications of the princesses of that court. The well-known fondness of Charles II. for handsome women obliged the earl to make his observations with great care; so when one glance at the ladies, on their way to church, convinced him that one was too fat, and both were too ugly, to please his royal master, he dared not present a favorable report.

Meanwhile the king had taken pains to inquire of other travellers who had been to Portugal, what sort of a woman the infanta really was; and the descriptions he got were so different from those presented by the Spaniards, that he altered his manner towards Don Francisco, and began to show him many marks of courtesy.

This enraged Vatteville, the Spanish ambassador, to such a degree, that he openly declared, "that he was directed by the king, his master, to let his majesty know, that, if he should proceed towards a marriage with the daughter of his rebel, the Duke of Braganza, he had orders to take his leave presently, and declare war against him."

This excited the king's indignation, and he manfully replied, "that the ambassador might be gone as soon as he liked."

Then Vatteville found that he had gone too far, and resorted to the most fulsome flattery in order to conciliate the irate king.

At last a special messenger arrived from France with a private communication from Louis XIV., expressing regret that any obstruction to the Portuguese match had arisen; and assuring King Charles that Catharine was a lady of rare beauty and accomplishments.

While Charles hesitated, he received a portrait of the dark-eyed infanta, which, after all, made a deeper impression [186]on his heart than diplomatists, promises of wealth, or the reasoning of his lord-chancellor, could ever have accomplished. In this portrait the princess was represented as a brilliant brunette, with large, dark eyes, and a profusion of brown hair arranged in short curls on each side of the head, and falling to the waist in ringlets at the back. "This person cannot be unhandsome," said the king, gazing attentively on the face of the woman he was so soon to marry.

The ambassador was summoned, and requested to repeat to his majesty all that England was to gain in the event of his marriage with the Portuguese princess. Don Francisco assured Charles that the money he had promised in the name of the queen-regent was all sealed up in bags awaiting transportation; and that the fleet which was to be sent for the princess might even go first and take possession of Tangiers.

It was further agreed that the marriage should take place in England, although it was not customary for any princess to join her husband in a foreign land until after the ceremony had been performed with a proxy acting as bridegroom.

Donna Luiza preferred this arrangement, because the pope had never acknowledged the independence of Portugal; and, as it would be necessary to apply for a dispensation before a marriage could be contracted between a Catholic and a Protestant, she feared that he would mention Catharine only as the daughter of the Duke of Braganza, and not as a princess. This would have been a serious affront to the royal house of Portugal, and most injurious to their cause.

On his part, Charles avoided anything disagreeable that might arise at the coronation of a Catholic queen in England, by having himself crowned before such a person ex-



isted. [189]Consequently, that ceremony was appointed for St. George's day, April 23, 1661, and was celebrated with great splendor and universal rejoicing.

The following month Charles II. opened parliament in person, and imparted the news that he intended to marry "the daughter of Portugal."

In June, the treaty which united England and Portugal was signed by King Charles at Whitehall; and the acquisition of Bombay, which it granted, gave England a foothold in India that she has retained ever since, as we know.

The contract secured for Catharine the free exercise of her religion and the privilege of fitting up a chapel in any palace she might occupy, besides a settled income of thirty thousand pounds a year, with full liberty to return to her native land, should she become a widow, without forfeiting her jointure.

Meanwhile, Vatteville was so enraged at being outdone, that, although a Catholic representative, he circulated papers among the populace, setting forth the ills that must necessarily arise in England from the introduction of a popish queen. He meant to do this secretly, but was caught in the act of distributing some of these documents from his own window among the soldiers. The king was so indignant that he sent his secretary of state to order the ambassador's immediate departure. Vatteville begged to be allowed to ask his majesty's pardon, but his request was not granted, and the troublesome busybody was obliged to go back to Spain without being permitted to speak to the king again.

There was great rejoicing in Lisbon when the Count da Ponte arrived with full power from the king to complete the arrangements for his marriage, and the streets rang with the cry of, "Long live the King of Great Britain, whom God hath raised to protect us from our implacable foes!" The count was the bearer of a letter from the king to [190]Donna Luiza, as well as one to the princess, whom he addressed as "The Queen of Great Britain, my wife, and lady, whom God preserve." Both were considered fine specimens of letter-writing in their day, and prove Charles II. to have been a clever correspondent. As soon as the marriage treaty was ratified, Catharine was addressed as queen, and treated with the utmost deference at her brother's court. A great change had suddenly come to the life of this young girl, and she was called upon to fill a position for which she was totally unprepared, and to become the wife of a merry monarch, whose views of life were entirely different from her own. We cannot help pitying her at the outset. She had been brought up under the most rigid laws, kept in seclusion, and only began to appear in public after she assumed the proud title of Queen of England. Ignorant of the trials that awaited her in the future, Catharine watched for the arrival of the Earl of Sandwich and the fleet that was to convey her to England with the utmost impatience. No anxiety as to her fate marred the bright hopes of the young girl whose path seemed strewn with roses; she beheld not the hidden thorns while listening to the flattering representations of those around her, and prepared herself to leave her family and her native land without a pang.

It was not until he had cleared the Mediterranean of pirates, taught Algiers and Tunis to respect the British flag, and taken possession of Tangiers in the name of his sovereign, that the Earl of Sandwich made his appearance in the Bay of Lisbon. Now it happened that the Spanish troops were marching to besiege a seaport town near Lisbon just when the English ships sailed into the harbor, and as the town was not prepared for resistance, it must certainly have fallen, and the consequences have been disastrous to Portugal. But alarmed at the assistance that had come, [191]just in the nick of time to their enemies, the Spaniards made a precipitate retreat, and Catharine congratulated herself upon being the means of saving her country from ruin.

Sir Richara Fanshawe was the bearer of a miniature of King Charles to his lady-love, accompanied by an affectionate letter. Catharine was delighted with it, and made numerous inquiries about her royal lover, whose romantic history had excited her admiration and wonder.

Charles passed the winter in making preparations for the reception of his bride; and while he was so engaged there were magnificent displays of fireworks, illuminations, and bull-fights at Lisbon for the amusement of the English guests; and the queen-regent was so well pleased with the Count da Ponte's good management, that she signified her approval of it by again promoting him. He was created Marquez de Sande.

The greatest formality was observed at the reception of the Earl of Sandwich, and no point of etiquette was omitted that might tend to add to the importance of the occasion.

The earl had the honor of being presented to the queen-regent and Queen Catharine, to whom he delivered letters from King Charles, written in Spanish.

Several English gentlemen of rank were presented to the Queen of Great Britain, who had been appointed officers of her household by the king, her husband, and she admitted them formally to their different posts.

Fêtes and rejoicings were the order of the day; and nothing else was thought of until the moment for handing over the money arrived. Then trouble began; and this is by no means the first instance of its arising from a similar cause.

In consequence of the late advance of the Spanish army, [192]Donna Luiza had been compelled to fall back on some of the gold she had reserved for her daughter's portion, to meet the expenses incurred for the defence of her realm. So she sent for the Earl of Sandwich, and after making profuse apologies, and explaining her difficulty, offered to pay down half the promised sum at once, and pledged herself to deliver the rest within the year.

The ambassador was perplexed. He had been ordered to receive the entire sum, and knew perfectly well how much his sovereign depended upon it. Besides, he had already taken possession of Tangier, and had stationed an English garrison there. He dared not incur the expense of removing the troops back home, nor would his gallantry permit him to insult the lady he was sent to convey to England by leaving her behind. His was an exceedingly delicate position, and he behaved like a kind-hearted gentleman by consenting to receive Catharine with half the sum of money originally offered. Then rose another difficulty, which proves that Donna Luiza was more diplomatic than honest; for when it came to the delivery of the bags, they were found to contain, not gold, but sugar, spices, and other merchandise, which had been valued by the Portuguese at a much higher rate than was fair.

This was an imposition against which the Earl of Sandwich violently protested, but that did him no good, for he could get nothing else unless he would accept jewels, which he positively refused. After a great deal of argument, it was at last arranged that Diego Silvas, a man of wealth and excellent character, should accompany the goods as supercargo, dispose of them in London, and pay the sum realized thereon to the king's exchequer. At the same time a bond was given by the government of Portugal for the payment of the residue within the space of a year. Thus everything was settled at last, and the royal bride [193]took her departure. Although she was leaving her mother and her native land, Catharine did not shed a tear. Everything seems to have been sacrificed for the formality of court etiquette—no sentiment being permissible.

The young queen, followed by the king and Don Pedro, her two brothers, the officers of the royal household, and a train of grandees, emerged from her apartments and descended the grand staircase to the main hall, where, at the entrance to the court chapel, she was met by her mother. This was the spot appointed for the leave-taking of the two queens. Catharine asked permission to kiss her mother's hand, whereupon Donna Luiza folded her in a fond embrace, and blessed her. Then they parted, and Catharine was led to her carriage between her two brothers. Before entering she turned and made a profound courtesy to the queen-mother, who forthwith retired. Perhaps in the privacy of her own chamber, this woman, who, though a queen, was still a mother, gave vent to the emotions she had schooled herself to conceal.

It was St. George's day, and that saint being the patron of Portugal as well as of England, the festival was celebrated with more than the customary splendor.

Amidst salvos of artillery the queen's barge approached the "Royal Charles," which carried eighty cannon and six hundred men, and Catharine was assisted to mount the ladder that had been built for her special use.

As soon as she got on board, a salute was fired by the British fleet, and answered by the Portuguese forts. Then, having been formally delivered over to the Earl of Sandwich, Queen Catharine was conducted to her cabin, where she bade farewell to her two brothers, who immediately returned to the city.

Everything was now ready for the fleet to set sail excepting the wind, which proved contrary, and prevented the [194]ships from leaving the bay. That night there was a general illumination and a magnificent display of fireworks, both on land and water. The wind continued unfavorable throughout the next day, and the queen-mother sent frequently to inquire how her daughter fared on shipboard. There was no complaint to make; for the royal cabin and state-room were most luxuriously fitted up with damask furniture and curtains, costly carpets, and soft downy cushions.

A little surprise was prepared for Queen Catharine that night by her brother, the king, who with Don Pedro and a chosen party of courtiers, embarked in several barges with their musical instruments, and serenaded the departing princess, performing the music and singing the sonnets and madrigals that had been composed in honor of her nuptials.

On the morning of the twenty-fifth the wind changed and the voyage began. The fleet consisted of fourteen men-of-war; but only three, the "Royal Charles," the "Gloucester," and the "Royal James," were occupied by Catharine of Braganza, her attendants, and officers of state. The others contained the queen's equipage and the merchandise that represented half her dowry. There were more than a hundred Portuguese in Catharine's suite, the principal ones being two ladies of the highest rank, Donna Maria de Portugal, Countess de Penalva, and sister to the Marquis de Sande, and Donna Elvira de Vilpena, Countess de Ponteval. These were appointed to chaperon the bride. Six noble young ladies formed part of the suite also, and an English count very discourteously described them as "six frights, calling themselves maids-of-honor, and a duenna, another monster, who took the title of governess to these extraordinary beauties." Besides these, there were six chaplains, four bakers, a perfumer, and a barber.

The voyage to England was so tempestuous that some of [195]the vessels had to put in at Mount's Bay for repairs. All the passengers suffered terribly from sea-sickness, and many of them from terror. The Duke of York's squadron awaited the fleet off the Isle of Wight, and as soon as it appeared in sight the royal brother-in-law sent his secretary in a boat to ask permission to kiss Queen Catharine's hand. Having obtained it, the duke, accompanied by Lord Chesterfield, the Duke of Ormond, Lord Carlingford, the Earl of Suffolk, and others, all in full dress, went in a barge to the admiral's ship. The Marquez de Sande received the party and conducted them to the royal cabin. Catharine, dressed in an English costume, was seated on a throne, under a richly embroidered canopy, when the duke was announced. She advanced to meet him; he knelt to kiss her hand, but she quickly raised him, and allowed him to salute her cheek. Then returning to her throne, Catharine conversed for a few minutes with his highness, her almoner, Russell, acting as interpreter. But the Duke of York spoke Spanish well; so in a few moments, after he had taken a seat by the queen's invitation on her left, he continued the conversation in that tongue.

When the royal brother-in-law retired, Catharine advanced beyond the canopy with him, but he tried to prevent it, telling her "she should recollect her rank," whereupon she sweetly replied, "that she wished to do that out of affection which she was not obliged to do." This answer pleased the duke so much that he called to see his sister-in-law every day, and a most friendly relation was established between them. On one occasion he expressed a desire to see her in her national dress; so the next day she received him attired as a Portuguese lady.

The fleet arrived at Portsmouth, May 13, the Duke of York's boat following the "Royal Charles," and the duke himself handed the queen to her barge, when she disembarked. [196]Countess de Pontevel attended Catharine, but Countess Benalva was too ill to leave the ship. The governor of Portsmouth, the city officials, and the leading persons of the neighborhood assembled on the beach to welcome the queen, who entered an open carriage and drove through the principal streets, to gratify the people's desire for a look at her. She had the good sense to appear in an English costume, so that she would not seem so much of a stranger among her new subjects. It was not until five days after his bride landed at Portsmouth that King Charles found time to leave home. He was accompanied by Prince Rupert, his cousin, and attended by a troop of his bodyguard. On reaching Portsmouth he went directly to visit the queen. The Marquez de Sande and other dignitaries awaited his approach, and after being graciously received by the king, conducted him to an apartment, where he made his toilet before presenting himself to her majesty.

Catharine had been ill for several days with sore throat and cold, and was still confined to her bed, which, by the physician's order, she was forbidden to leave. But now that he had come, Charles was so anxious to see her that he insisted on entering her chamber at once. The Earl of Sandwich had the honor of attending him; and the interview, which was conducted in Spanish, was entirely satisfactory to all parties. Charles expressed his pleasure at seeing his bride, and kindly assured her that he was delighted to hear from her physician that her indisposition was not serious. She answered with so much prudence and discretion all the king's questions that when he returned to his apartments he congratulated himself on the fortunate choice that had been made for him.

The following morning Catharine was so much better that it was decided to have the marriage ceremony performed without delay. This was accordingly done after the [197]manner of the Catholic ritual, no one being present but the Portuguese ambassador, a few nobles and ladies. After the queen's conscience was satisfied in this regard, it was necessary that the king's should be also; therefore a public Protestant ceremony took place in the afternoon, Sir Richard Fanshawe having the honor of being the king's groomsman.

The king was so delighted with his bride that he wrote his chancellor from Portsmouth: "I am so well satisfied that I cannot tell you how happy I am, and I must be the worst man living (which I hope I am not) if I be not a good husband, for I am confident that no two dispositions were ever better suited to each other than my wife's and mine."

The royal couple arrived at Hampton Court on the 29th, which, being the anniversary both of the king's birth and restoration, was observed as a national holiday. The usual rejoicings in honor of the queen's first appearance among her London subjects took place, and she was welcomed with every token of popular favor that could be devised. When their majesties alighted from their carriage they passed through a line of guards, and were closely followed by the two Portuguese countesses and other ladies and gentlemen of the royal household. The high officials were assembled at the palace to greet her majesty and kiss her hand, and the foreign ministers were also present to offer congratulations of their respective sovereigns. As her majesty passed through the long suites of rooms the nobility, gentry, and ladies of the court were presented to her according to their rank. Poor Queen Catharine was so fatigued by the time she had seen so many strange faces, made innumerable bows, and had her hand kissed ad nauseam, that she was obliged to retire to her bedroom for a short repose. The same evening the [198]Duchess of York arrived from London to pay her respects to her royal sister-in-law. She was met by the king at the garden gate, and led at once to the presence of the queen, who embraced her affectionately. Then the royal family seated themselves in the queen's bed-chamber and partook of a cup of tea, or "China drink," as it was called when introduced into England only a year or two before.

However, Catharine of Braganza was the first tea-drinking queen of England, and no doubt she and her sister-in-law of York became quite well acquainted over their social cup the first day they met.

A portrait in the historical gallery at Versailles, painted by Lely, represents Catharine as a very pretty little woman at the time of her marriage. Her eyes, complexion, and hair are dark and handsome, and unmistakably those of a Spanish lady.

The queen's bed at Hampton Court was covered with crimson velvet, embroidered in silver, at a cost of eight thousand pounds, and was presented to Charles on his departure from Holland to assume the crown. The large mirror and toilet were of beaten gold,—a present from the queen-mother, Henrietta,—and the hangings were all of silk and gold, with embroidered canopies. Valuable paintings adorned the walls, luxurious carpets covered the floors, and magnificent Indian cabinets, brought from Portugal, stood in various parts of the palace.

The new and brilliant scenes by which Catharine was surrounded were all so strange that, while they interested her, she found them very fatiguing. She had been bred in a convent, as we know, and felt more real gratification in her daily devotional exercises than in the gayety in which she was often compelled to take a leading part, even when her interest was not awakened. She heard mass daily, and was disposed to spend so much time in her chapel that the



[201]ambassador, her godfather, felt called upon to remind her of her duties as queen and wife.

King Charles was the most witty, fascinating prince in Europe, thoroughly good-natured, brave, reckless, devoted to pleasure, and devoid of religious and moral principles. The free and easy manners of his court shocked the innocent, virtuous little queen to such a degree that she would have preferred not to appear in public at all. But her naivete amused her husband, who devised all sorts of pleasures for her entertainment.

But Catharine's dream of happiness was soon to end in a rude awakening, when her tender, loving husband became unkind and unreasonable. There was a very bad woman at the English court, named Lady Castlemaine, whose husband was living in France This woman had managed by her wicked intrigues to gain great influence over the king, and she was universally despised by everybody excepting his majesty. The queen-mother in Portugal had heard of this creature, and warned her daughter to have no communication with her whatever. Therefore, when Charles, most unreasonably, presented her name, at the head of the list of ladies whom he recommended for appointments in the royal household, the queen crossed it off. Charles remonstrated, but Catharine was firm; thereupon Charles asserted his authority as king and husband. Catharine became excessively indignant, and passionately refused to have Lady Castlemaine among her ladies. The matter was dropped for the moment; but the king assumed an injured air, and made himself disagreeable for a few days after; without the slightest warning he introduced the objectionable party to the queen before her whole court. He knew that he was wrong, and, like many a man before and since, felt angry with his wife because such was the case. He reproached her with being stubborn and undutiful, and [202]used threats that he never meant to put into execution. She burst into tears, told him that he was tyrannical and unkind, and declared that she would go back to Portugal.

One would suppose that the sight of a young, pretty woman in distress would have moved the sympathies of the gay, light-hearted king; but he was not accustomed to being ruled in that way, so he merely replied: "That she would do well first to learn whether her mother would receive her, and he would soon give her an opportunity for knowing, for he would forthwith send home all her Portuguese servants, who had, he knew, encouraged her in her perverseness."

Everybody at court knew that the king and queen had quarrelled, for they scarcely looked at each other. If Catharine had known how to manage her husband she might have won him; but she was too honest to flatter him more than he deserved, and loved him too well to let him suppose she could justify his conduct when she knew how much he had been to blame. She spent hours at a time in her room weeping, while he amused himself with his friends and treated his wife with indifference. He was more deeply offended at her wishing to leave him than at any of her angry reproaches, and sent Lord Clarendon to talk to her in his behalf. She was very penitent, but insisted that she ought to have the privilege of selecting her own servants, and would on no account consent to the presence of an objectionable person.

After that King Charles brutally upbraided her with the non-performance of the marriage treaty with regard to her dowry,—though she was not to blame for it,—and insulted the Portuguese ambassador on her account. Diego Silvas was thrown into prison because he was unable to complete arrangements for paying the sum of money which was, in reality, not yet due. Catharine knew that these indignities [203]were aimed at herself, and felt very unhappy that others should be made to suffer on her account.

A temporary reconciliation was effected between the royal couple by the visit of Queen Henrietta, who declared that she had come to England with the express intention of offering her congratulations on their marriage. She set up her court at Greenwich Palace, and on the day after her arrival the young couple paid their first state visit together. Queen Henrietta awaited them at the first door of the palace after they ascended the stairs; and when she took the poor, neglected, almost heart-broken Catharine in her arms, and folded her in a motherly embrace, the young woman must have felt that she had found a friend at last. The queen-mother could speak no Spanish, and Catharine little English, but the king and the Duke of York acted as interpreters. It is probable that Queen Henrietta meant to intimate to her son, and to all the courtiers present, the respect due the young queen when she said: "That she should never have come to England again, except for the pleasure of seeing her, to love her as a daughter, and serve her as a queen." Catharine replied with gratified pleasure, "That in love and obedience, neither the king nor any of her children should exceed her." This visit lasted four hours, and seems to have had a good effect, for on their return to Hampton Court the king and queen supped in public, much to the delight of their court; and the next evening, when the king returned from a trip to London, her majesty went some distance on the road with her household to meet him.

Queen Henrietta returned the visit of the royal couple, and spent nearly a month at Hampton Court, going back to London on the 23d of August, the day appointed for Catharine to make her first public entrance into the metropolis. [204]This was done with great magnificence; crowds of people gathering to the banks of the Thames to view the array of boats that floated in attendance upon the royal barges. At six o'clock in the evening the king and queen, with their attendants, landed at Whitehall Bridge, where the queen-mother, with her whole court, all in rich attire, waited to receive them.

A series of entertainments succeeded; and King Charles, once having introduced Lady Castlemaine at court, insisted upon her presence always, though his conscience often pricked him for doing what he knew to be wrong. The fact was that he was surrounded by people who recognized no law but their own desires; and whenever they saw Charles disposed to yield to his wife's just opposition to the woman who entertained them, and who was one of them in dissipation, they jeered at him. He, on the other hand, had not the moral courage to do right in spite of his friends. It was not because he respected Catharine less, but that he loved pleasure more. We must not suppose that all his statesmen approved of his conduct; on the contrary, Lord Clarendon and others took him to task as much as they dared, and considered the queen an ill-used wife.

Charles had threatened to send all the Portuguese attendants back home, and at the expiration of four months after their arrival in England he determined to carry the threat into execution.

This was a sore trial to her, particularly as the king fixed upon a day for their departure without naming any reward for their services, or sending a letter to the Queen of Portugal to explain his reason for dismissing them. Catharine would have remunerated them herself, but she had no money, and so could not afford to be generous. She begged her husband to permit her to retain a few of them, and as a great favor he consented to the old Countess of Penalva, [205]two or three of the cooks, and the priests who officiated in her majesty's chapel.

Now, as we have said, the king's conduct was not approved by all the statesmen; there were some among the most faithful of them who were so pained at the course he was pursuing that they ventured to censure him for it. But he paid little heed to their wise counsel, and the party of which they were the representatives grew daily in numbers and power. Had Queen Catharine not been a most sensible and magnanimous woman, she might well have united herself to this party in opposition to her husband, and created no end of disturbance; but she loved King Charles devotedly, and was willing to make any sacrifice to obtain his affection in return. She was wrong; for, while she opposed him, he could not but respect her, because he knew that she was prompted by a sense of right, and it would have been better for her and for him if she had remained firm.

She yielded at last, perhaps under bad advice, and suddenly treated Lady Castlemaine with such courtesy as to surprise the whole court, King Charles included. It is barely possible that her principal reason for this concession was a desire to retain the king's support for her native land, which was just then greatly needed. Be this as it may, Charles misunderstood his wife, and attributed her former refusal to grant his request to perversity and hypocrisy, and congratulated himself upon his perseverence and decision. This, no doubt, colored his conduct later in life. [206]


A.D. 1662.

T he New Year opened with a series of balls, receptions, and feasts; but poor Catharine felt little pleasure in them, for her husband neglected her and spent his time in dissipation of the worst character. His associates in vice endeavored to justify his treatment of the queen by ridiculing and depreciating her in every possible way. They could not appreciate her honesty or her piety, so they termed the one lack of brains and the other bigotry. Even her personal appearance was caricatured; but although she smarted under the stings of these worthless creatures she bore them uncomplainingly; no wound rankled in her breast as those inflicted by her husband's indifference and undignified behavior.

One source of trouble to Catharine during the first year of her marriage was poverty. She did not receive half the amount that the marriage treaty allowed her, and was forced to practice the most rigid economy to avoid falling into debt. This she did so successfully that the financiers of the government could not help applauding her for it.

When she was ill one summer, her physician recommended the medicinal waters of Tunbridge Wells; but neither she nor her officers had any money to pay the expenses of such a trip, and it required at least two months before it could be raised.

A.D. 1663. [207]Previous to Catharine's departure for the wells, she received the good news from her native land that she had eagerly hoped for.


The combined troops of Portugal and England had defeated the Spanish army with great loss; and as the battle took place very near Lisbon, it had been desperately contested by the Portuguese, while the Queen of England awaited the result with breathless anxiety. Colonel Hunt commanded the English forces; and when he led them up a steep hill to attack the troops under [208]Don John of Austria, the Portuguese general exclaimed in ecstasy: "These heretics are better to us than all our saints!"

Queen Catharine was so ill the following autumn that it was universally believed she could not recover. The king repented of his unkindness when he thought she was going to die, and passed many hours at her bedside, bestowing the most loving attentions upon his sick wife, which had so good an effect that she recovered. Her convalescence was very slow, and almost before she was pronounced out of danger she was called upon to receive the French ambassador and another gentleman from the court of Louis XIV., who brought messages of condolence from that monarch on account of the royal lady's illness.

It seems cruel that Catharine should have been disturbed with such ceremonies before she was strong enough to endure them; but we must not forget that she lived in an age when privacy was a luxury unknown to royalty.

When she thought her death was at hand, she made her will, and gave orders for many domestic arrangements. Her only requests to the king were, "that her body might be sent to Portugal for interment in the tomb of her ancestors, and that he would remember the obligation into which he had entered, never to separate his interests from those of the king, her brother, and to continue his protection to her distressed people." Charles promised to obey; but by her recovery his wife spared him the test.

In the last reign we told all about the Roundheads, and the origin of their name. Of course theirs ceased to be the popular party when the Restoration took place; consequently, with a desire to avoid the sneers of the courtiers, they adopted wigs, which after awhile became so fashionable that even those whose long locks had been a subject of vanity to their possessors, had the folly to clip them off



[211]and replace them with wigs or periwigs, as they were called. King Charles fell in with the prevailing style when he found himself growing gray, likewise the Duke of York, whose hair was far too beautiful to be concealed.

The necessity for economy that forced itself upon the queen soon begot for her the reputation of stinginess, though it was rather a matter of prudence than otherwise. She was obliged to save because she seldom received her full income. Fortunately, her tastes were simple compared with those of her royal spouse; for while her bedroom furniture at Whitehall was of the plainest description, the only ornaments being sacred pictures and relics, the king's apartments were fitted up with all the extravagance and luxury of an Oriental nabob.

A.D. 1664. The summer after her recovery, Queen Catharine appeared in a silver lace gown, and walked through the park to St. James's Chapel, attended by her maids-of-honor, one bright, sunshiny morning, all in the same glittering material. Parasols had not then been introduced into England, so the courtly dames shaded their faces from the bright rays of the sun with gigantic green fans,—a Moorish fashion introduced by Catharine of Braganza at her court. Masks were often worn at that period to protect the complexion, but they were too warm in summer, and the shading fans were by far more comfortable. The trade with India, opened to the English by the queen's marriage treaty, filled the fancy shops with all sorts of gay and beautiful fans, which were put to another use besides that of sunshades. Ladies found them very convenient for screens when carrying on a little flirtation; for a whispered conversation with a courtier behind one, or a bit of court scandal thus imparted, seemed improved by this spicy addition to the secrecy. Addison gives a pretty playful description of the use of the fan in several copies of the "Spectator," [212]with which the belles of the present day are no doubt familiar.

Trade with other countries had increased in England, and her merchants were anxious to push it still further; but Holland proved such a formidable rival in this matter that, notwithstanding the friendly relations that had so long existed between the two countries, Charles saw the necessity for preparing his navy for hostilities.

Lord Sandwich was ordered to sea, and Queen Catharine was so anxious to see the departure of the fleet that she and Queen Henrietta accompanied the king to Chatham for that purpose.

Shortly after this the Spanish ambassador aroused the queen's indignation by demanding the return of Tangier to his government. Of course Charles peremptorily refused; and the queen, out of a feeling of spite, pretended that she could not speak any language but Portuguese and French when addressed by that dignitary. As he knew only his native tongue, she thus spared herself the necessity of a prolonged conversation with her enemy.

Once, on the occasion of a launch at Woolwich, Catharine played her husband a sly trick. She went down from Whitehall with her ladies in her barge; but the water was so rough that they were all dreadfully sea-sick, excepting herself. The king, the Duke of York, the French ambassador, and the attendants went down in carriages by land. After the two parties met on ship-board, a violent rain and hail-storm detained them for a long time. As soon as it abated, the queen stole ashore with her ladies, took possession of the carriages, in which they returned home; leaving all the gentlemen to make the best of a very rough trip by water.

A.D. 1665. The following year one of England's greatest naval victories was won by the fleet under the Duke of York's command. [213]The rejoicings occasioned thereby were cut short by the breaking out of the most terrible visitation of the plague ever known in England. Death, sorrow, and poverty spread from house to house, until the exceptions were those that did not bear a red cross in token of the existence of disease within. The queen-mother quitted the country, and, as the epidemic increased, the court was removed to Salisbury.

Many people attributed the plague to the appearance of a comet that had been observed a few months before. We of the present day laugh at such an absurd superstition; but in the seventeenth century a visit from one of those heavenly bodies was always contemplated with awe by the ignorant, who were unfortunately in the majority. King Charles was not of the number, for he had a taste for astronomy, and was delighted to have an opportunity of studying the comet in its different phases. For this purpose he spent several nights at the observatory at Greenwich, a building that he had founded, and Queen Catharine stayed with him twice until she saw the curiosity also. She was not gratified the first time, because astronomical calculations were not so accurate as they are at present.

The king opened parliament in the autumn, when they voted him supplies to carry on the Dutch war, which he greatly needed; for he was at that time paying a thousand pounds weekly out of his own private purse to relieve the sufferings caused by the plague.

A.Dr 1666. The following year opened sadly for Catharine, because it brought news of the death of her beloved mother, the Queen-regent of Portugal. All the court put on the deepest mourning, and were directed "to wear their hair plain, and to appear without spots on their faces." This referred to the patches of black plaster that disfigured the court ladies of that period. A few months later Catharine [214]removed with her ladies to Tunbridge Wells again for the summer. This was a favorite resort for the fashionables during the seventeenth century, Queen Catharine having made it so by her patronage. There, under the shadow of spreading trees, the gay company would promenade in the morning while drinking of the waters. On one side of the avenue, formed by the trees, were little shops filled with toys and all sorts of fancy articles; on the other was a market. Neat-looking cottages, built here and there over a mile and a half of ground that surrounded the wells, formed the dwelling-places of the visitors, who would assemble on the green in the evening just before sunset for a dance. After dark they would adjourn to the queen's palace, where all sorts of amusements were indulged in for several hours. Catharine dispensed with ceremony at this watering-place, and endeavored to enhance the enjoyment of everybody by so doing. As a surprise to the king she sent for some actors, who performed comedies for the entertainment of the court. One member of this company was the celebrated Nell Gwynne, a beautiful actress, who afterwards became a lady of the queen's bed-chamber.

While the king and queen, surrounded by their court, were thus engaged making pleasure the business of their lives, the aspect of public affairs was most gloomy. The poverty caused by the ravages of the plague had rendered it impossible to collect taxes, consequently the supplies voted by parliament for the carrying on of the war were not forthcoming. France had formed an alliance with Holland, and England was at war with both powers. Added to these troubles was this: the country was filled with hirelings of exiled Roundheads, who, while pretending to be patriots, were really spies, dishonorably intriguing to raise an insurrection in England.

On the second of September a fire broke out in a baker



[217]shop, at the corner of Thames street, and spread with frightful rapidity. It raged for four days, and the air was filled with the shrieks and lamentations of the men, women, and children, who rushed from one place to another after being obliged to desert their homes, knowing not whither to turn in order to save themselves from the devouring flames and the tottering churches and dwellings. The king and the Duke of York worked with the firemen, commanding, encouraging, and rewarding them; and it was the presence of mind of the latter that stopped the fire at last, by blowing up several houses. This precaution saved the old Temple Church, the Tower, and Westminster Abbey. It was in seasons of danger and disaster that King Charles II. always appeared to the greatest advantage, by displaying a paternal care for the welfare of his subjects. After the fire he caused tents and huts to be erected in the vicinity of London for those who were left homeless, and provided them with food and fuel. He was, besides, remarkably lenient to those who could not pay taxes, because of the poverty occasioned by the plague, though he was thereby deprived of the means to pay his seamen, and obliged to order the ships to lay-by.

If Charles had been as faithful to his wife as he was to his subjects she would have been a very happy woman; but about this time he was imitating Henry VIII. by contemplating a divorce, because he had fallen in love with Frances Stuart, a maid-of-honor, and one of the most beautiful women of her day. This was a cause of great anxiety to the queen, but fortunately not for a long time, because her rival married the Duke of Richmond and went to Denmark to live. That put an end to the divorce question; but Lord Clarendon brought down the king's vengeance on his head by favoring Frances Stuart's marriage, and even using his efforts to bring it about. Charles never forgave his chancellor for that offence.

[A.D. 1667.] [218]Shortly after this marriage there was a masked ball at court, at which the king and queen danced together. On St. George's Day Charles celebrated the festival of the Garter with all the ceremonies as they were originally observed when that order was founded. Offerings were made at the altar by the sovereign and his knights, after which they partook of a feast at the Palace of Whitehall. The king sat at a table on a dais alone, and part of the time the queen stood at his left hand as a spectator. The knights sat at a table ranged the whole length of the room to the right of the king, and at the middle of the feast they all arose and drank his health, whereupon the trumpets sounded and the Tower guns were fired. At the conclusion of the feast all the provisions that were left over were distributed among the crowd, that always assembled at the end of the hall, near the door, on such occasions. It was the custom in olden times, even to the end of the Stuart dynasty, for the kings and queens of England to dine in public; and any well-behaved, decent-looking person was free to take his stand in the dining-room to watch the proceedings. Charles II. was so good-natured that he would often hand a taste of some delicacy to one of the spectators on such an occasion, and won many hearts by his gracious manners. He would converse freely, too, with those who happened to stand near enough. A well-known wit told him one day while he was dining "that matters were in a bad state, but there was a way to mend all." The king looked at him inquiringly, and he continued: "There is an honest, able man I could name, that if your majesty would employ and command to see things well-executed, all things would soon be mended, and that is one Charles Stuart, who now spends his time as if he had no employment; but if you would give him employment, he were the fittest man in the world to perform it." [219]After Lord Clarendon fell into disfavor with the king, he was replaced by Buckingham, a very bad, witty man, who had great influence with Charles. He was an enemy to Catharine, and proposed to his sovereign several plans for ridding himself of her; but they were all too absurd and too revolting for even Charles II. to consider, unprincipled as he was.

A.D. 1668. Seven years had elapsed since the marriage of Catharine of Braganza, and still the promised half of her marriage-portion had not been paid. Civil wars in Portugal succeeded the death of the queen-regent and exhausted the treasury. At last news arrived in England that the king had been deposed, and his younger brother, Don Pedro, placed on the throne instead. Everything connected with her family and her native land interested Queen Catharine very much, and it distressed her to hear of the struggle that had been going on there for so many months.

A.D. 1669. The king sympathized with her and treated her with a great deal of consideration in her anxiety. She had an opportunity of reciprocating not very long after; for Henrietta, the Duchess of Orleans, made a short visit at the English court, and died three weeks after her return to France. She and Catharine then met for the first time, and formed a warm attachment for each other; so her death was a source of real sorrow to the queen. Charles gave vent to the most passionate grief when he heard the startling news, for he was warmly attached to his only sister, who had befriended him during his exile.

After the court took off mourning for the Duchess of Orleans, Queen Catharine indulged her fondness for dancing by giving balls and masquerades; the latter becoming so much the rage as to resemble in some respects a carnival.

Separate parties would be formed by the king and queen, [220]with the ladies and gentlemen of the court; and so disguised as not to be recognized by their most intimate friends, they would go about in search of adventure. On such occasions they would enter any house where a party was going on, mingle with the invited guests, and commit some of the wildest pranks imaginable, only taking care that their rank should not be suspected. Once the queen got separated from her party, and by some mistake was left quite alone. She was a long way from home, and did not dare to announce who she was. In great alarm she stood in the street until a hack came along, when she summoned it and was driven to Whitehall. Whether or no she took the driver into her confidence has not been recorded.

During such escapades, of course, both their majesties were subjected to liberties from their subjects, which they bore most good naturedly. The king, especially, seldom resented even the most caustic sarcasms from his courtiers, though he generally returned a spicy repartee.

The Earl of Rochester once wrote upon Charles's chamber door:—

"Here lies our sovereign lord the king,

Whose word no man relies on;

Who never said a foolish thing,

And never did a wise one."

"Very true," returned King Charles, after reading the lines. "My doings are those of my ministers, but my sayings are my own."

A.D. 1671. Once when Queen Catharine was at her palace in Suffolk, with her court, she determined to have a little frolic; and for that purpose took the Duchesses of Richmond and Buckingham into her confidence. This was her plan: A fair was being held at the neighboring town of Saffron Walden, and there her majesty meant to go in disguise. So the three ladies dressed themselves like



[223]country girls, in short, red petticoats, intending to mingle with the crowd, fondly hoping that they would not be recognized. Catharine was sensible enough to select for her cavalier Sir Bernard Gascoigne, a brave old gentleman, loved and respected by all who knew him; and a warm personal friend to the king. Mounted behind this cavalier, on an old cart-horse, and followed by the other ladies, each riding in the same primitive fashion with her escort, the party set out. But they had copied their costumes, not from those of the peasants, but from the representation of them at the theatres. So as soon as they arrived on the fair-grounds they were mistaken for a company of strolling players; and supposing that they would soon begin to perform, the rustics followed them in crowds. When the queen entered one of the booths to buy "a pair of yellow stockings for her beau," a man who had seen her at one of the public state dinners recognized her, and, proud of his superior knowledge, announced his sovereign's presence at once. The information spread like wildfire, and the court party returned home, followed by a motley crowd.

The same year the king and queen made a tour through several counties, and were sumptuously entertained. At its conclusion, Catharine remained quietly at Euston Hall, in Suffolk, with her ladies, while the king attended the Newmarket races, attended by his lively courtiers.

A.D. 1677. The marriage of the king's nephew, William, Prince of Orange, with Princess Mary, eldest daughter of the Duke of York, was celebrated at Whitehall in November; and as the anniversary of the queen's birth occurred the same month, there was occasion for double rejoicing. Catharine had known the young princess almost from the day of her birth, and felt a warm attachment for the motherless girl.

When the time came for her departure for Holland with [224]her husband, she fell on the queen's breast and burst into tears.

Catharine endeavored to soothe her by recounting her own experience in having come to England a perfect stranger, without even having seen the man she was to marry.

But Mary thought no sorrow could equal hers; and replied, between her sobs: "Yes; but, madam, you came into England, and I am leaving England."

If she could have looked into the aching heart of the woman who was offering words of comfort scarcely needed she would have been awed into silence. Poor Catharine's position at that period was worse than ever before. The Earl of Shaftesbury, an ambitious, revengeful, dishonorable man, was her avowed enemy, and bent upon her destruction; so he had influenced the king to absent himself from her in the hope that time and separation would at last induce him to consent to a divorce. He was not successful in this; but he was so in bringing about the popish plot, his intention being to destroy the queen and rob the Duke of York, whom he hated also, of his right of succession.

We do not intend to give all the details of this wicked plot; but it played such an important part of Queen Catharine's life that we will, in as few words as possible, explain the nature of it. We must go back to a year or two after her marriage, for it was then that Catharine made a serious mistake, which caused her name to be connected with this plot nearly fifteen years later. Catharine's anxiety to have the independence of Portugal acknowledged by the pope was so great that soon after she got to England she induced her husband to send Richard Bellings, one of the gentlemen of her household, on a mission to Rome. The object was to promise his holiness that if he [225]would extend his protection to her native land she would use her utmost endeavors to advance the Catholic cause in England; adding that her desire to accomplish this had been the sole cause of her marriage. Letters of the same purport were sent to several of the cardinals also. Her appeal had the desired effect; but Bellings let out the secret, and the vigilant enemies of Queen Catharine made a note of it, to be used against her when opportunity offered.

A.D. 1678. Titus Oates and Bedloe were the infamous characters selected to swear away the lives of a large number of innocent persons.

Oates was the son of a weaver and preacher, and a villain of the deepest dye. If he had not been so brainless as to swear to a tissue of falsehoods too palpable to gain credence, rivers of blood would have been shed, and the disgraceful scenes that attended the St. Bartholomew massacre in France would have been repeated in England. But when the king questioned him and Bedloe, their statements as to the place and manner that the queen had used for declaring her intention of poisoning his majesty were so absurd that they stood self-convicted.

King Charles never for a moment suspected his wife of any attempt on his life; and he knew, besides, that although the Duke of York, his brother, had become a member of the Catholic church, it had not been through her instrumentality.

But the public mind was aroused to such a pitch by the daily inventions of Oates and his adherents that the business of life was interrupted, and the wildest statements were eagerly accepted as indisputable facts.

Catharine was even accused of having caused the murder of Godfrey, a city magistrate, whose body was found on the highway, pierced with his own sword. [226]It was Shaftesbury who prompted Oates in all he said and did, though he was wily enough to keep himself in the background. It was he who secured from parliament, for the shameless perjurer, a pension of twelve hundred pounds a year for the information he had given, in consequence of which all the Roman Catholic peers were deprived of their seats in that body.

All this time Queen Catharine was surrounded by spies, ready to pounce upon any action of hers that might be perverted into an appearance of guilt; but her honesty and simplicity of character spoke so loudly in her favor that there was not a true-hearted man in the realm who was not assured of her entire innocence.

But she was aware of her danger, and expected nothing less than that she would be brought to the block, as Charles I. had been. She, therefore, sent a messenger, to her brother, Don Pedro, informing him of her situation, and asking his protection in case her life should be in jeopardy. Her adviser was Count Castelmelhor, a noble Portuguese exile, who proved of such service to Queen Catharine that she helped him to retrieve his lost fortune by purchasing a new estate for him, to which he gave the name of Santa Catarina, out of compliment to her.

King Charles offered five hundred pounds for the murderer of Godfrey. Tempted by so large a sum, Bedloe, Oates's colleague, and a discharged convict, swore that the deed had been done by the queen's popish servants; and that he had been offered two thousand guineas to assist in the removal of the body, which he saw lying on the queen's back stairs. When cross-examined, this rascal contradicted himself, and described the portion of the palace where he beheld the corpse so inaccurately as to prove conclusively that he had never been in it at all.

The members of the house of commons were paralyzed [227]with astonishment at their next session, when Oates advanced to the bar, and, raising his voice, exclaimed: "I, Titus Oates, accuse Catharine, Queen of England, of high treason."


His partners in villany, taking advantage of those present, who were so surprised as to remain speechless, voted an address to the king, requesting the removal of his wife to the Tower. But the lords refused to admit the testimony of such men as Oates and Bedloe, so appointed a committee to investigate the charges brought against her majesty. Shaftesbury protested, but he was overruled.

King Charles was perfectly conscious of a conspiracy against his wife, and vowed that he would not suffer her to be wronged. His indignation was so great that he began to treat her with such affection and respect as she had not known for many a day at his hands. He had Oates arrested, but was obliged to release him; and then the man [228]went beyond all bounds. Five Catholic lords were sent to the Tower on account of his accusations against them; thirty thousand Catholics were driven out of London from terror, and arrests and executions were of daily occurrence.

A.D. 1679. Some of the queen's servants were of the number, much to her horror and grief, and the Duke of York frequently assured her that his turn and hers would come next. Although the king feared the popular rage, he absolutely refused to permit the queen to stand a trial when his privy-council proposed it, because he knew it would not be a fair one. Shortly after he went to Newmarket with the queen, and while they were there Bedloe died. In his last confession he swore that so far as he knew both the queen and the Duke of York were innocent of any attempt on the king's life, or of any murder whatever, and that all the evidence he had formerly given was false.

A.D. 1680. The popish plot closed with the execution of Lord Stafford, a tragedy that ought not to have taken place. But we have one more circumstance to relate, an anti-climax to the popish plot. One Fitzharris appeared upon the scene, and accused the queen and the Duke of York of a design to poison the king.

Charles immediately summoned parliament to meet at Oxford, March 21. Escorted by a troop of horse-guards, and accompanied by the queen, he proceeded to the appointed place, where the royal couple were greeted with enthusiasm by the students of the university, who made addresses of welcome, while the authorities prepared a feast and other rejoicings. Shaftesbury arrived with his party and a crowd of armed retainers, who wore hatbands with the inscription, "No popery! No slavery!"

King Charles's first parliament sat for eighteen years, and was called the long parliament; this one was to sit for six [229]days, and ought therefore to have been styled the short parliament. Fitzharris was a member of the church of Rome, and great results were anticipated from his statements. The house of commons wanted the trial managed one way, the lords another, and a furious dispute arose. So, without mentioning his intention to a soul, the king had himself carried in a closely-curtained sedan chair to the house. He wore his robes of state and carried his crown concealed on his lap. He entered the house of lords unannounced, took his seat on the throne, placed the crown upon his head, and bade the usher summon the commons. The moment they entered he told them "that proceedings which began so ill could not end in good," and commanded the lord chancellor to declare parliament dissolved. Before they had time to recover from their astonishment, the king and queen were on the road to Windsor, escorted by their guard.

If Charles had displayed the same determination and courage at the beginning of the popish plot, how much innocent blood might have been spared, and what misery prevented! Fitzharris was tried for treason and executed.

A.D. 1683. About three years after the popish plot another was formed by some minor conspirators, their object being to kill both the king and the Duke of York, his brother; but Providence interposed to prevent such a foul murder before the plans of the conspirators had been completed. The Duke of Monmouth revealed the plot, which brought several prominent men to the block.

A.D. 1684. It was so cold the following winter that the Thames was frozen over, and an ox was roasted whole in a fire built on the ice. This was done while a fair was being held; the booths for the purpose were stationed along the banks of the river, and there was a great deal of merrymaking, though the winter was a hard one for poor people, because provisions were so high and fuel so scarce. [230]


The queen's birthday that year was celebrated with great splendor, and there was the finest display of fireworks in front of the palace ever seen in England. The same night there was a grand ball, at which all the court ladies and gentlemen danced in costumes that were unusually rich and elegant.

A.D. 1685. [231]This was the last entertainment that King Charles ever attended, for on the second of February of the following year he had an attack' of apoplexy that resulted in death four days later. He was bled until he was almost exhausted, and then his bedroom was so crowded with people, night and day, that he had little chance of recovery. Most of the time it contained five bishops, twenty-five lords, the councillors, foreign ambassadors, doctors, and attendants, besides the queen, and the Duke and Duchess of York.

The queen was overcome with grief, and once when the dying man sent for her she was too convulsed to attend, but sent a messenger to beg his pardon if ever she had offended him. "Alas, poor lady!" exclaimed Charles, "she begs my pardon! I beg hers with all my heart." After that she took her place at his bedside and stayed with him to the end.

Both the Duke of York and Catharine were exceedingly anxious that the king should receive the last rites of the Catholic church, because they knew it was what he would prefer if he were conscious of his danger, but they dared not propose it, as it was contrary to the laws of England for any one to influence another in that direction. At last the French ambassador consulted the Duke of York on the subject, and impressed upon him the necessity of having extreme unction administered before it was too late.

Returning to his brother's room, the duke knelt by the bed and asked in a low voice: "Sir, will you receive the sacrament of the Catholic church?"

"Ah! I would give anything in the world to have a priest," faintly replied the dying monarch. "I will bring you one," returned the duke. "For God's sake, brother, do!" exclaimed the king. Then he added: "But will you not expose yourself to danger by doing it?" [232]"Sir, though it cost me my life, I will bring you one," said the duke.

Father Huddleston was selected, because for many reasons he was the least objectionable of the Catholic priests in England, and had for many years been a personal friend to the king, whose life he had once saved. He arrived between seven and eight o'clock on the evening of the fifth. Now it became necessary to clear the sick-room of those who would have objected to the performance of the Catholic rites; the Duke of York managed the difficult matter in this way:—

Kneeling down by his dying brother he whispered "that all things were ready and Father Huddleston in attendance, and asked if he would see him?"

"Yes, with all my heart!" eagerly replied Charles, in a loud voice.

Turning to the room-full of people, the duke said:

"Gentlemen, his majesty wishes every one to withdraw but the Earls of Bath and Feversham."

Then Father Huddleston, disguised in a wig and cassock, such as the clergy of the Church of England always wore, was led up a secret staircase, through the queen's apartments, into the king's room.

As he entered the alcove in which stood the king's bed, the duke presented him, saying: "Sir, I bring you a man who once saved your life; he now comes to save your soul."

Charles replied, in a weak voice, "He is welcome."

At the conclusion of the Romish rites the company were readmitted; and Kean, an English minister, prayed with the king.

During the night the dying man spoke affectionately to his brother, and asked forgiveness of his wife. At six in the morning he asked the time, and said: "Draw the cur-



tain, [235]and open the window, that I may behold the light of the sun for the last time."

Before noon Charles II. expired, in the fifty-fourth year of his age. He was buried on the fourteenth of February, at Westminster Abbey, after lying in state for a week. He was deeply mourned by his subjects; for no sovereign ever had the attributes of popularity more fully developed than King Charles II.

Queen Catharine's grief on account of the death of her husband was great. The new king treated her with kindness and consideration. She was permitted to retain her rooms at Whitehall as long as she chose; but on the eighth of April, after two months of mourning, she removed to Somerset House, where she established her court as queen-dowager.

Catharine no longer danced or took part in gayety of any kind; but she indulged her love for music by giving regular concerts at Somerset House.

A.D. 1688-9. Several times she made up her mind to return to her native land, but fortunately did not do so; for if she had she would have lost every penny of her dower as queen-dowager during the Revolution, which terminated in the exile of James II. and his family, and the placing of the Prince of Orange on the throne of England. She wisely weathered the storm, although she was subjected to many mortifications and insults in consequence.

After William III. was on the throne he had occasion to go to Ireland; so before departing he sent Lord Nottingham to tell Catharine that he had heard of certain meetings, held at Somerset House, for the purpose of denouncing his government; he therefore desired her to remove either to Windsor or Audley End.

Astonished at such a message, but not in the least alarmed, she replied: "That it was her desire to quit his [236]territory for Portugal, if he would but have appointed ships for her voyage; but, as it was, she did not intend to go out of her own house."

The next day William sent profuse apologies, and bade the queen "not to think of removing."

A.D. 1692. A few months later the royal widow gave notice of her intention to leave England; but it was not until the spring of 1692 that she was able to carry it into effect. She had then been living in retirement for several years, and had saved a large sum of money to carry back to Portugal.

Several English ladies of rank attended her; and as soon as Louis XIV. heard of her arrival in France he sent an escort to conduct her through his dominion. But she was so anxious to get to her native land that she would not accept the invitation he extended her to visit his court.

Queen Catharine was met on the Spanish border by a train of Portuguese nobles of the highest rank; and on her arrival at Lisbon she was greeted with the most enthusiastic welcome.

Don Pedro met her on the road in grand state. He descended from his carriage and went to the door of hers; then, after an affectionate embrace, the queen alighted, entered her brother's coach, and was conducted in procession to one of the country palaces that had been prepared for her. The Queen of Portugal, Donna Maria Sophia, received her at the head of the grand staircase, and after the observance of all the regular court ceremonies, went home with her husband, to enable the tired traveller to rest.

[A.D. 1704.] When Don Pedro was obliged some years later, for the sake of policy, to withdraw from the cares of government, he left the charge of his dominions entirely [237]his sister Catharine, and when he was dangerously ill the following year, she was solemnly constituted Queen-regent of Portugal.

A.D. 1705. The country was then engaged in a war with the King of Spain, and "Donna Catharine" conducted the campaign with such skill that her popularity increased tenfold.

A sudden attack of colic [Likely Appendicitis. DW] put an end to her existence the very last day of the year that had been such a brilliant success to her. The king, her brother, hastened to her as soon as he heard of her illness, but arrived only an hour before she expired.

Queen Catharine left liberal legacies to all her relations, though Don Pedro was her heir. The poor were not forgotten, and various monasteries were provided for by her will. She had chosen the royal monastery of Belem for the place of her interment, and the funeral ceremony was performed with all the grandeur and solemnity that would have been observed if Catharine of Braganza had been a reigning sovereign. Her bier was carried by eight noblemen of the very highest rank to the litter, on which it was conveyed to Belem, attended by all her retinue, and by the whole court of the king, her brother.

As a testimony of respect all public buildings, business-houses, and places of amusement were closed for a week, and the court wore mourning for a year.

Catharine was greatly lamented in Portugal, where even to the present day her name is mentioned with the utmost veneration. She outlived Charles II. twenty-one years, and was devoted to his memory until she died. [238]


(A.D. 1659-1718.)

The city of Modena in Italy was the birthplace of some of the greatest poets and painters of that land of artists, and it was there that the heroine of this narrative was born. Her father, the Duke of Modena, was a learned man, and would probably have made his mark in the world if he had lived long enough; but he died young, and left his Duchess Laura to rule in his stead.

This lady had two little children, a boy, who later became Francis II. of Modena, and Mary Beatrice. Prince Rinaldo d'Esté, afterwards a cardinal, was appointed guardian of the children, and assisted their mother in educating them.

Francisco, as the boy was called during his minority, was two years younger than his sister, consequently when his father died the duchess ruled the state many years before he was fit to do so.

She was rather a stern mother,—her fear, lest overindulgence might spoil her little ones, making her notice trifling faults that in some instances it would have been wiser to have overlooked. She insisted upon hard study several hours every day, and never allowed any of the fasts imposed by the church to be omitted, though both the children were delicate. When Mary Beatrice was frightened at seeing a chimney-sweep descend into her nursery through the fireplace, her mother made the man remain until she had shown the child who he was, and explained



[241]Why he looked so black and dirty. On one occasion the attention of the duchess-regent was drawn to the fact that hard study was wearing upon the young duke's health. "Better that I should have no son, than a son without wit and merit," replied the parent.

A.D. 1666. Mary's first real sorrow was when her governess, of whom she was very fond, entered a convent, and she grieved so sorely that she was sent to the same institution to finish her education. There she spent several happy years; for the discipline was much less rigid than it had been at the palace, and she had the companionship of girls of her own age. The books that were placed in her hands, and the influence by which Mary was surrounded at the convent, filled her youthful mind with mystic romance, and gave her a desire to imitate the female saints whose lives had been devoted to the service of God. Besides, she had an aunt in the convent, scarcely fifteen years older than herself, who was preparing to take the veil, and Mary Beatrice loved her so much that she desired to follow her example. But she was not to lead a life of peace and repose: a different destiny awaited her, as we shall see.

James, Duke of York, was brother to Charles II., and the second son of Henrietta Maria and Charles I. of Great Britain. He was a gifted engineer, and for many years occupied the post of Lord Admiral of England, when he established colonies in different parts of the world, and advanced trade with foreign countries. After being a prisoner in his native land for many months, during the struggles of his father's reign, the duke made his escape to Holland and shared his brother's exile, never returning to England until the time of the restoration. While his mother was living in France he entered the army of that country as a volunteer, and fought so valiantly for the royalist cause that the French commander said: "If any man in [242]the world was born without fear it was the Duke of York."

There is a portrait of this prince in the royal gallery at Versailles, painted when he was about twenty-two years old, which represents him as one of the handsomest men of his time. His brown hair is brushed from his brow and falls in ringlets at the back; his eyes are large, dark, and expressive, lips full and red, complexion warm and healthful. This picture was painted before he had the small-pox, for that dreadful disease made a sad alteration in his appearance later in life.

The Duke of York distinguished himself on the battlefields of Spain after he was driven from France, where he had served in four campaigns, and was offered a very high position. He would not accept, because he was always expecting affairs to take such a shape in his native land as to permit his return..

A.D. 1660. Shortly after that important change did occur,—the restoration of Charles II.,—the duke fell in love with Anne Hyde, daughter of Clarendon, and married her in spite of a great deal of opposition on all sides.

A.D. 1667. By the time he was thirty-four years of age his wife and several of his children were dead. Two daughters were spared, who caused their father much bitter sorrow, as we shall see in the course of this biography. About seven years after the death of his wife the Duke of York fell in love with a lady of humble birth; but his brother, the king, put a stop to any thought of marriage with her, and sent the Earl of Peterborough to visit the different princesses of Europe and select for James a wife whose station in life would be equal to his own.

A.D. 1673. The ambassador's choice fell on Marv Beatrice of Modena, whom he was enabled to see through the convent grating by the good offices of a priest. The [243]duke had secretly charged Peterborough to be very careful in his selection, and to give him a faithful description of the lady he preferred before settling anything.

Now, it must not be supposed that the ambassador made his choice without a great many annoyances, for he had to visit several courts, and as the object of his trip was suspected, he was placed in very embarrassing positions when the particular princess he was considering did not possess the requirements he deemed indispensable. And even after he had decided that Mary Beatrice of Modena should have the honor of becoming Queen of England, his trouble was not at an end by any means; for the young lady had planned a different sort of life for herself, and objected very decidedly to the lofty position now offered to her.

The Earl of Peterborough intended to proceed very cautiously, and not to make known his errand until he was quite sure of success. He therefore lodged himself at an inn like an ordinary traveller; but the second morning after his arrival a man named Nardi presented himself with a letter from the duchess-regent. The earl's surprise at being so honored was increased when he read what the lady wrote. It was, that having heard the object of his journey to Italy, she deemed it her duty to inform him that her daughter had resolved to become a nun, but added that there were other princesses in her family, to one of whom, if the duke, his master, thought fit, he might be permitted to address himself. She sent also a cordial invitation for the ambassador to come to court "where she should deem it an honor to welcome him." The earl was not flattered at the anxiety displayed by the duchess to refuse him her daughter before he had made his offer, so he pretended that his visit had no special object, but that he was a private traveller, with no desire to interfere with anybody's plans. This was only a little stratagem on the part of the [244]duchess; for she was dazzled with the thought of her daughter becoming the wife of the heir presumptive to the throne of England, but thought it best not to appear overanxious. However, she took the precaution to speak to Mary Beatrice on the subject at a very early stage of the proceedings.

Mary Beatrice was less than fifteen, but she was tall, womanly, and very beautiful, with hair, eyes and eyebrows black as jet, and a clear olive complexion. She read and wrote Latin and French, painted well, and was an excellent musician, but of history and geography she was thoroughly ignorant. When her mother announced that the Duke of York desired to marry her, she asked: "Who is the Duke of York?" and upon being told that he was brother to the King of England, whom he would succeed to the crown, she replied: "That she had never heard of such a place as England, nor of such a person as the Duke of York." The duchess explained more fully, and casually mentioned that the duke was in his fortieth year; then Mary Beatrice burst into tears and implored her aunt to marry him instead, saying "that as she was thirty years of age she was more fit to become the wife of a man of forty than she herself was, being only fifteen." No amount of persuasion could reconcile her to the thought of marrying a man twenty-five years her senior, and she declared her determination to become a nun. So eloquently did she plead her own cause that her uncle and her mother's prime minister were won over, and encouraged the princess in her refusal to marry.

Meanwhile a messenger arrived from England to inform the earl that the Marquis of Dangeau had been despatched from France to assist in concluding the matrimonial alliance between England and Modena, adding that it was suspected that an aunt was to be substituted for the young princess, [245]but that she was quite unsuitable to the Duke of York, therefore no such exchange was to be permitted.

A week later the marquis arrived and had an interview with the duchess. He pointed out to her the advantages of such a powerful ally as England, and assured her that the King of France had requested him to use his utmost influence to forward the marriage. His eloquence prevailed with the duchess, the court, and council; but the prime minister, Father Garimbert, remained firm, and continued to espouse the side of the young princess.

The duchess then sent for the Earl of Peterborough, and informed him of the change in her determination. The next consideration was, to obtain a dispensation from the pope, because the Duke of York had not openly avowed himself a Catholic. The Abbé Dangeau, brother to the marquis, was sent to Rome for that purpose, and while he was gone the duchess sent for the Earl of Peterborough, and after making profuse apologies, explained why she had regarded the proposed alliance with so much disfavor at first, her principal reason being the desire of the princess to enter a convent. The earl expressed a wish to see Mary Beatrice that evening, and was conducted to the palace at the appointed hour for that purpose.

He approached the young girl with great formality, and told her that he must ask her pardon for desiring her to leave her peaceful retreat; but as soon as he saw her portrait he knew that she was the woman, of all others, to make his prince happy, and that since he had seen her he was more convinced of it than before. She answered crossly, "that she was obliged to the King of England and the Duke of York for their good opinion of her, but she had vowed herself for another sort of life than marriage;" then with tears in her eyes she desired his excellency, "if he had any influence with his master, to oblige [246]her by endeavoring to avert any further persecutions of a maid who did not wish to marry." She added: "That there were other princesses in Italy, even in her own family, who would not be unworthy of so great an honor, and who deserved it much better than she did."

She referred to her aunt, but the earl pretended not to understand, and continued to urge his suit. Mary Beatrice spoke her mind as a petulant girl of fifteen is apt to do, and then left the room with her mother.

The ambassador complained of her behavior to one of the ministers, who told him that the ladies of Italy had no will but that of their friends, therefore he need give himself no concern about the matter. Acting upon this hint, the earl reminded the minister that everything must be settled before the next meeting of parliament, because they would object to the marriage of the duke with a Catholic princess.

The dispensation had been refused at Rome, but in spite of that and of the tears and lamentations of Mary Beatrice the marriage treaty was soon completed. The Bishop of Modena refused to perform the ceremony; but White, a poor English minister, who had no fear of excommunication, undertook it.

The marriage portion amounted to eighty thousand pounds, to be paid at different periods, part of it being furnished by Louis IV., who had always treated Mary Beatrice as his adopted daughter.

A.D. 1674. The ceremony was performed on the thirtieth of September, the Earl of Peterborough, who acted as proxy for the Duke of York, placing a valuable diamond ring on the bride's finger. Afterwards there was a grand banquet, and the earl sat under a canopy at the head of the table with the bride, now called her royal highness the Duchess of York. In the evening there was



[249]dancing, and everybody seemed happy excepting the bride, whose heart was very heavy at the thought of so soon leaving the home and companions of her childhood. She had struggled with all her might against destiny, and had made the most determined efforts to preserve her freedom, all of no avail. She had been led to the altar like a lamb to the sacrifice, and her lips had pronounced the vows from which her soul had shrunken.

When the news reached the Duke of York that the ceremony had been performed, he was talking to a circle of friends in the drawing-room. "Then I am a married man!" he exclaimed, and that night sent word to his daughter, Mary "that he had provided a playfellow for her."

The duke had given his ambassador instructions to bring his bride to England with as little parade and as few foreign attendants as possible; but she screamed and cried in such a way when preparations for her journey were being made that her mother was obliged to promise to accompany her to England, and her brother to go part of the way. Three Italian ladies of the highest rank were permitted among her bed-chamber appointments. They were Madame Molza, Madame Montecuculi, and her daughter, Anna, a young girl of seventeen. A lady named Turenie, who had been governess to the princess from her infancy, was added to the list also. These four ladies proved devoted friends, and followed Mary Beatrice throughout her life.

It had been a trial for the young Duchess of York to bid farewell to her native place; but when, two days later, she had to part with the brother who shared her joys and sympathized with her sorrows almost from her cradle, her burden of grief seemed greater than she could bear. Forgetting the dignity that her station demanded, or the presence of the formidable array of English and Italian nobles, she remembered only that she was losing, perhaps forever, [250]the little brother whom she loved better than any one in the world. She pressed him to her heart again and again, and burst into an agony of tears when the youthful prince was led away. It was a consolation, at least, that her mother was to continue with her, and her mind was soon diverted by the welcome she received at the hands of the several princes of Italy, through whose dominions she passed with her attendants.

On arriving at the French border the bridal train was met by officers of Louis XIV., who defrayed all the expenses, and conducted them to Paris. They were lodged at the Arsenal, and magnificently entertained.

All that remains of this building shows what a splendid one it must have been, but the storms of revolution have passed over it and left it almost in ruins.

The Earl of Peterborough was anxious to get to England with his charge as quickly as possible, but Mary Beatrice became so ill that she was unfit to travel for several weeks. Her disease was a low fever, occasioned by the mental anxiety she had endured for so many weeks. After her recovery the young duchess visited Versailles, where she was received with the highest consideration, and entertained with all the splendor of that court. It was a dreadful ordeal for so young and inexperienced a girl to know just what degree of attention to accord each person without too much condescension on her own part, but particularly so for one who had no taste for the formalities of royalty, and greatly preferred the seclusion of a cloister. But Mary Beatrice excited admiration for her beauty and charming manners, of which the king showed his appreciation by making her some costly presents. She had already received jewels valued at twenty thousand pounds from her unknown husband, which she wore on state occasions while in France.



[253]Meanwhile a strong party in England had leagued itself, under the leadership of the Earl of Shaftesbury, for the purpose of destroying the Duke of York, and of getting the reins of the government in their own hands. This was no easy matter, because his services in his country's cause, his energy, and his high sense of honor, had rendered him one of the most popular of princes; but the party opposed to him were ready to resort to any measures, no matter how vile, to gain their end.

Knowing this, the duke had managed his marriage with the utmost secrecy and despatch, because the strongest avowed point of opposition was his adherence to Catholicism, which his alliance with a Catholic princess would naturally strengthen. So when parliament met, on the twentieth of October, they were perfectly astonished and highly indignant to hear from the king's lips that the duke was already married to the Princess of Modena, who was even then on her way to England. The infuriated Commons petitioned their sovereign "to appoint a day of general fasting, that God might avert the dangers with which the nation was threatened."

Charles told them that they might fast as much as they pleased, though he knew that by so doing they merely desired to show their contempt for what they called the "popish marriage," though the pope had positively withheld his consent to it. The members of the king's own cabinet became alarmed at the threatened storm, and urged his majesty either to forbid the princess to leave Paris or to dismiss his brother from court, and insist upon his leading the life of a country gentleman. Charles indignantly refused both propositions.

The day after parliament met Mary Beatrice landed at Dover, where her husband awaited her on the beach, and all the citizens had collected to get a sight of her. [254]The duke received her in his arms, and was charmed with her at the outset, as well he might have been; but she, poor child, was not so favorably impressed with a man old enough to be her father, and showed her aversion plainly. This did not discourage the groom, who treated her with courtly attention, feeling convinced that he should win her heart in time.

In the presence of his suite and the bride's, besides a large number of Dover people, the Duke of York was married to Mary Beatrice according to the church of England rites, and the little ruby ring placed on her finger that day was more highly valued to the end of her life than any jewel the princess possessed.

The second day after the marriage the bride and groom, attended by the Duchess of Modena, and her brother-inlaw, the Prince Rinaldo d'Esté, besides the members of their court, set out for London. King Charles went down the river with his court, in the royal barges, to meet the bridal suite, and received his new sister-in-law with every mark of affection; then he conducted the party to Whitehall, where his queen vied with him in her acts of loving attention to the bride.

Even her enemies were for the time being disarmed when they gazed on the lovely, innocent countenance of the young bride; and at King Charles's court she was much admired and esteemed.

The Duke and Duchess of York established themselves at St. James's Palace, where all the foreign ambassadors called to congratulate them, and where they held their courtly receptions as regularly as the king and queen did theirs at Whitehall, though on different days. King Charles was devoted to his brother, and soon became warmly attached to his wife, but a little coolness was early established between Queen Catharine and the Duchess of York in

[255]this way: It had been stipulated in the marriage treaty that the duchess was to have the use of the Catholic chapel at St. James's which had been fitted up by the queen-mother, Henrietta, for herself and her household. But King Charles, knowing how unpopular any display of her religion at that time would make his brother's wife, influenced Catharine to claim it as one of her chapels, and had a private apartment in the palace fitted up for the devotions of the young duchess and her suite. This was a piece of friendship on the part of the king that was not appreciated by his sister-in-law, who laid the blame on the queen, with whom she felt quite offended.

At the end of the year the Duchess of Modena was called home by some intrigues that had been begun during her absence; but although Mary Beatrice was sorry to part with her, she had by that time begun to love her husband so much that the parting was not so great a trial as it would otherwise have been, and the love that was implanted in her heart developed into a devotion that lasted to the day of her death.

The first years of her married life were passed by the young duchess in a succession of gayeties. She was often annoyed because her husband treated her like a child, but as she was little older than his daughter this is not surprising. In later years circumstances developed the force of her character, and won the respect and admiration that she truly merited.

She had the good sense to study English, and soon became a perfect mistress of the language.

A..D. 1675. Mary Beatrice had a little daughter born about a year after her marriage. This was a great pleasure, but it was soon marred by the duke's refusal to have the baby baptized a Catholic. He did not object himself, but explained to his wife that their children belonged to the [256]nation and would be taken from them if not brought up according to the established church, adding that is was besides the king's pleasure, to which they must submit. The youthful mother appeared to yield, but sent for her confessor, Father Gallis, and had the child baptized on her own bed according to the rites of the church of Rome.

When the king came a day or two later to make arrangements with her and the duke for the christening of their child, Mary Beatrice told him that "her daughter was already baptized." Without paying the slightest attention to this assertion, his majesty ordered the little princess to be borne to the royal chapel, where she was christened by a Protestant bishop, her half-sisters, Mary and Anne, acting as sponsors. The baby was named Catharine Laura after the queen and the Duchess of Modena, and the Catholic baptism was kept a profound secret, though it must have been a subject of annoyance to the king.

A fortnight later some very severe laws were made against the Catholics. One of them forbade any British subject from officiating as a Romish priest, either in the queen's chapel or elsewhere; another prohibited any adherent of the Catholic, church to set foot in Whitehall or St. James's Palace, the penalty for such an offence being imprisonment. This law of course kept the Duchess of York and the Catholic ladies of her household from the king's palace, but the young mother was so wrapt up in her baby that she was indifferent to almost anything besides. She was happy with her husband also, and lived on terms of close friendship with her step-daughters, who never accused her of the slightest unkindness to them, even in later years, when they would have been pleased to bring any unfavorable accusation against her. But the young mother was soon to be deprived of the infant she loved so fondly, for it died of a convulsion before it was ten months old.

[257]This was, of course, a great sorrow to Mary Beatrice, but she was not permitted to indulge it very long, for before the close of the year she had to attend a feast given by the lord mayor, and a ball at her own palace.

A.D. 1676. Another princess was born the next year, and this time there was no secret baptism. That ceremony was performed by Dr. North, Master of Trinity College, and the child was named Isabella. She lived to the age of five years.

A.D. 1677 The following year the marriage between the Princess Mary and the Prince of Orange was solemnized; and it was this union that proved so disastrous to the fortunes of the Duchess of York, her husband, her children.

There was much rejoicing in the household of the Duke when a little prince made his appearance. He was christened with great pomp by the Bishop of Durham, and no less a person than the king himself, assisted by the Prince of Orange, acted as sponsor. Charles bestowed his own name on his nephew, and created him Duke of Cambridge. The little fellow died the following month, and was interred, as his sister had been, in the vault of Mary Queen of Scots, at Westminster Abbey.

The duke grieved more for the death of this boy than he had for any of his children. The Prince of Orange wrote a letter of condolence; but, as he was then plotting against his royal father-in-law, and as the death of the little prince opened the way to the throne for his wife, it is not probable that he was sincere in his expressions of sympathy. But Mary Beatrice was ignorant of this, and when she heard that the Princess of Orange was ill she planned a visit to her, which, after obtaining the king's consent, she undertook, in company with Princess Anne and her lord chamberlain, the Earl of Ossory. As it was her desire [258]to ascertain the true state of Princess Mary's health, and to afford her comfort, the duchess travelled incognito, and sent a man on before to hire for her a small house not far from the palace. This was done to secure free intercourse among the three ladies without any of the formality required by court etiquette.

A.D. 1678. Although the visit was a flying one, the duchess found a storm gathering around her husband on her return which soon compelled him to give up his seat among the state councillors. His friends advised him to retire to the continent with his family; but his proud spirit revolted from any move that would have the appearance of guilt or cowardice. The king urged him to baffle his enemies by returning to the church of England, but he refused to act in opposition to his conscience. Then for the sake of peace, which the "merry monarch" would have purchased at any cost, Charles advised his brother to go abroad before the next session of parliament. James consented, providing the king would command it in writing, but he scorned the idea of running away. The order was given in the form of an affectionate letter, and on the fourth of March the Duke and Duchess of York embarked for Holland. They were not permitted to take their little daughter Isabella to share their exile, which was a great deprivation to both parents.

A.D. 1679. The king called on the day of their departure to bid farewell, and was much affected at parting with the brother whom he loved so well. The weather was very stormy, and wiping the tears from his eyes Charles said: "The wind is contrary; you cannot go on board at present."

Mary Beatrice, who considered that her husband was being sacrificed to secure his brother's peace of mind, replied with spirit, "What, sir, are you grieved?—you who



[261]send us into exile! Of course we must go, since you have ordained it." She regretted this speech later, because she knew that Charles had only yielded to the clamor of her enemies.

The duke and his wife arrived at the Hague a week later, and were received by the Prince of Orange with every demonstration of respect. Later they removed to Brussels, where they occupied the house Charles II. had lived in before the restoration.

In July the Duchess of Modena joined her daughter, from whom she had been separated for five years, and the two ladies were rejoiced to meet again. But the Duke and Duchess of York could not rest contented so long as their children were away from them, so they wrote to the king entreating him to send them to. Brussels. He consented, and Princess Anne, with the infant Princess Isabella, left England on the nineteenth of August. They had not been with their parents many days when a messenger, sent by the Earl of Sunderland, arrived in Brussels to inform the duke of the king's serious illness. James set out at once to visit his brother without mentioning his intention to any one but Mary Beatrice, and travelled so privately and so quickly that his presence in England was not suspected until he presented himself at Windsor at seven o'clock in the morning. Charles was so much better that he was up and partly dressed. Fearing that it might injure his brother if it were known that he had sent for him, the Duke of York knelt and begged his majesty's pardon for coming before he was recalled. Then all the courtiers flocked around the traveller and paid their compliments, for James was really a favorite, and his presence always commanded respect. The king was so delighted to see him that he declared "nothing should part them again." However, by the end of a fortnight Charles was convinced that his [262]brother could no longer remain with him in safety, but he gave permission for him to remove his family from Brussels to Scotland. Then the duke went back to the continent, and was making a farewell visit to the Prince and Princess of Orange, in company with his wife, his children, and the Duchess of Modena, when a message arrived from King Charles recalling them all, but directing the duke to embark for the Downs and remain there till further orders. Everybody was delighted but the Prince of Orange, who had his own reasons for objecting to the duke's return; however, he had no voice in the matter at that time. Two days later Mary Beatrice bade farewell to her mother, who had passed two months with her, and embarked with her family for England. The voyage was very stormy, and the duchess suffered excessively from seasickness. Party excitement ran so high, and the king's power was so diminished, that by the time the duke arrived at the Downs a messenger informed him that the king had changed his mind about his coming to London, and that two frigates were in readiness to convey him and his family to Leith, in Scotland, where the Duke of Lauderdale had been ordered to make arrangements for their reception.

The duchess was too ill to proceed further by sea, and her husband did not dare to take her ashore without a written permission from the king, so there she lay tossing about in the Downs while an express was sent to London. Charles was sorry to hear of her miserable condition, and ordered his brother to bring her to St. James's Palace forthwith. They were delighted to find themselves safe on terra firma after all they had suffered; but they were not yet at their journey's end, for the very night of their arrival the king assured his brother that he had no power to protect him if he persisted in remaining in England.

A week later two of his friends informed the duke that [263]his majesty desired him to withdraw to Scotland for a short period, but that his wife and children might remain under his care at St. James's Palace. But Mary Beatrice was too devoted a wife to permit her husband to go into exile alone; so, although it necessitated separation from her little daughter and a weary journey over roads that were almost impassable, she went with him.

Every action of the duke's had been so perverted that his great naval victories were attributed to cowardice, and every other, no matter how great a benefit it had proved to the nation, to a desire for the advancement of popery. This being the case, no marks of favor were shown him as he advanced towards the North, and the discourtesy of the towns that thirteen years before had lavished attentions on him pained him excessively.

No sooner did the royal couple reach the Scottish border than everything was changed, and they were met with every mark of affection and respect. Three miles from Berwick the Scotch guards, under the Marquis of Montrose, were drawn up to welcome them, and a little further on two thousand gentlemen on horseback awaited them. The duke alighted from his carriage to receive the compliments of the lord chancellor, who headed the procession; then several of the nobles kissed his hand, and paid the same respect to the duchess, who sat in her coach. With this numerous escort their royal, highnesses were attended to the house of Lauderdale at Lethington, where, with their whole retinue, they were splendidly entertained until they made their public entry into Edinburgh.

The people of Scotland were so pleased to have the royal family represented in their country that they were unwilling to believe any of the calumnies against the duke, and looked forward to great prosperity from the establishment of a court among them. But James desired to live [264]as privately as possible to avoid creating jealousy among his enemies in England.

The Countesses of Peterborough and Roscommon, as several other ladies of high rank who had been with Mary Beatrice since her marriage, attended her to Scotland. They found Holyrood Abbey, where they made their home, far less luxurious than any former palace they had inhabited; but the duchess made no complaint, and always tried to be cheerful for her husband's sake.

A.D. 1680. King Charles had promised his brother that he should not remain long in exile, and he was as good as his word. At the beginning of the new year his majesty entered the council chamber and made the astounding announcement that, as he had derived no benefit from the absence of his brother, whose lights he knew would be disputed at the next meeting of parliament, he had ordered him back to London to give him an opportunity of defending himself.

A great many people were much pleased at this action on the part of the king, and even offered thanks for it; but the powerful party who were opposed to everything he did, and objected to the Duke of York as successor to the crown, were very angry. Their leader, Shaftesbury, and several other members of the house of lords, resigned on the spot. Charles declared that "he accepted their resignation with all his heart."

The Duke and Duchess of York were rejoiced at their recall to England, but they had gained so many friends in Scotland that their departure from there caused a great deal of regret. The lords of the council wrote a letter of thanks to King Charles for the honor he had done them in sending the duke to their country, and praised his wise and prudent conduct with much warmth.

The royal couple returned by water, and were saluted by [265]the guns from the ships and tower as they ascended the river to Whitehall, where the king stood at the gate to receive them. They were immediately conducted to the queen's apartment, and then to their own, where they once more embraced the little daughter whom they had not seen for four months. That night the city was illuminated, and two days later the city officers called in a body to congratulate the duke and his wife on their return. A grand supper was given by the lord mayor in honor of the royal brothers, and the aldermen drank the king's health on their knees, and grew so loyal as the wine was swallowed that they "wished every one hanged and consigned to perdition who would not serve his majesty with his life and fortune."

The duke and duchess established their court at St. James's Palace, and gave a series of brilliant balls and feasts that increased their popularity considerably. Mary Beatrice was so highly respected that even her bitterest enemies could find no excuse for mixing her name with the popish plot, of which we gave an account in the last reign.

But Shaftesbury and his colleagues were not to be baffled; they had determined on the ruin of the Duke of York, and never rested until they had forced the king to agree to his banishment once more. They wanted the sea to separate him from England, but Charles compromised in his usual way, and notified his royal highness that he was to return to Scotland. The duke was sorely grieved, for he believed that even his brother had turned against him; and that his banishment to Scotland would be followed up by something worse. He was the more convinced of this when, in order to protect himself against the machinations of his powerful enemies, he demanded of the king a general pardon, under the great seal, for any offence that might be charged against him, and his majesty refused. He gave [266]as his reason that it would be injurious to a man of the duke's exalted rank to have such a document drawn up; but James became so enraged that he swore "that if he were pushed to extremity, and saw himself likely to be entirely ruined by his enemies, he would throw himself into the arms of Louis XIV. for protection." Of course such a threat was treasonable, and only to be excused on account of excessive indignation, for the duke was burning under the sense of wrong and ingratitude from a king and a country in whose service he had risked his life so often. Poor Mary Beatrice was called upon to part with her little Isabel again, and this separation was the last, for the mother never more beheld her only child.

The following beautiful lines by the poet Dryden were written to commemorate the embarkation of the Duke and Duchess of York, which occurred on the eighteenth of October:—

"Go, injured hero! while propitious gales,

Soft as thy consort's breath, inspire thy sails;

Well may she trust her beauties on a flood

Where thy triumphant fleets so oft have rode.

Safe on thy breast reclined, her rest be deep,

Rocked like a Nereid by the waves asleep;

While happiest dreams her fancy entertain,

And to Elysian fields convert the main.

Go, injured hero! while the shores of Tyre

At thy approach, so silent shall admire;

Who on thy thunder shall their thoughts employ,

And greet thy landing with a troubling joy."

After a stormy voyage of a week, the Duke and Duchess of York arrived on the shores of Scotland, and when they observed the joy manifested by every class of inhabitants at their return, their sad hearts warmed towards the nation that were so eager to prove their gratitude and loyalty.

They travelled through Scotland attended by an ever-increasing train of devoted followers, and received at every



[269]stopping place the most unbounded hospitality. At Leith they were met by a grand procession, headed by the Earl of Linlithgow, colonel of his majesty's guards, and a regiment of soldiers, besides nobility and gentry on horseback, and a long train of coaches filled with councillors and noble ladies and gentlemen. As they advanced guns fired, bells rang, bonfires were lighted, and crowds assembled with shouts of welcome. The city authorities of Edinburgh met their royal highnesses at the gate of Holy-rood Palace, and the lord provost on his knees presented the silver keys of the city to the duke, at the same time offering a welcome in the name of all the citizens.

Holyrood Palace had been repaired and the royal apartments refitted for the accommodation of the duke and duchess, with their retinue; so their home was by no means as comfortless as it had been on their former sojourn there.

The portrait of Mary Beatrice had been painted by Lely just before her departure from London; and it was the last work of that great artist, who died before the end of the year.

The duchess was not quite twenty, and at the height of her beauty. She is represented with her hair falling around her head in luxuriant curls; her dress is scarlet velvet, embroidered and fringed with gold, cut low at the neck and filled in with soft cambric, of which material the flowing sleeves are also made. A full rich scarf, of royal blue fringed with gold and pearls, crosses one shoulder, and falls in graceful folds over the lap to the ground. The lady is sitting in a garden, and a tree in the background is entwined with honey-suckles and roses; her left hand rests on the neck of a beautiful white Italian greyhound.

A brilliant court was established at Holyrood, and Mary Beatrice succeeded in winning all hearts by her kind and [270]gracious manners. Her religion was unpopular, but she intruded it upon no one, and her conduct was admirable.

Behind the Abbey of Holyrood there was along avenue shaded with stately oaks, where James was in the habit of taking his daily exercise. The green strip at the foot of the hill is called "the duke's walk" to this very day, though all the beautiful trees have been removed.

Mary Beatrice introduced tea-drinking among the Scotch ladies, and the fashion soon became general, for she was so much admired that it became a pleasure to imitate her. She was loved because she tried to please, and the duke was not behind-hand in this respect. His royal highness established a bond of good fellowship between the nobles and the mechanics which added greatly to his popularity. It was done in this way: Tennis and golf, both games played with clubs and balls, were the favorite amusements among the gentry of Scotland in those days. The duke enjoyed them also, and always selected a mechanic or tradesman for his partner. Of course this example was imitated by the courtiers, and thus high and low were brought into pleasant contact. His royal highness generally played against the Duke of Lauderdale, who was an excellent golfer as well as himself. One day they agreed to stake an unusually large sum of money on the game. James called a shoemaker named John Paterson to assist him, and after a very hard contest defeated his opponent. When Lauderdale paid the three or four hundred gold pieces that he had forfeited, his royal highness handed them to Paterson, saying: "Through your skill I have won the game, and you are, therefore, entitled to the reward of the victory." The bonnie Scot was more pleased with the delicate compliment than with the gold. It was many such acts that endeared James to the people amongst whom his lot was cast. When Lochiel, a brave Highlander, was [271]presented at court, the duke received him with marked courtesy, and questioned him about his adventures. During the conversation he asked to see the chieftain's sword, which was delivered into his hands without hesitation. The duke tried to draw it from the scabbard, but as it was merely a dress-sword, not meant for use, it had become rusty. After a second attempt he handed it back to the owner, saying: "That his sword was never so difficult to draw when the crown wanted its service." Lochiel was so embarrassed that he did not know what reply to make, but drew the sword and handed it to his royal highness, who turning to the courtiers present, said: "You see, my lords, Lochiel's sword gives obedience to no hand but his own!" and thereupon knighted the Highlander on the spot.

The duke arrived in Scotland just after an insurrection, when many people lost their lives and property; but he exerted such an excellent influence that peace was soon restored, and prisoners liberated whenever they promised to cry "God save the King!" He governed Scotland well for his brother, and won the love of the populace by always resorting to the mildest of punishments in opposition to the barbarities practiced by Lauderdale.

During the winter the duchess met with an accident that nearly cost her life. She was thrown from her horse, and her long riding-habit becoming entangled in the saddle, she was dragged some distance and received several kicks from the terrified animal before she could be rescued. Fortunately this occurred on a sandy plain, otherwise she must have been killed. As it was, she was taken up covered with blood and perfectly insensible. She recovered in time, having received no serious injury, but was obliged to give up her favorite amusement; for her husband, who always considered horseback riding dangerous for women, exacted a promise that she would never so imperil her life again.

[A.D. 1681.] [272]The spring brought bad news, for King Charles sent a messenger to inform his brother and sister that their little daughter, Isabel, had died at St. James's Palace. This cruel blow only made the banishment and persecution of the duke and duchess harder to bear, and James wrote to his brother for permission to take his wife to some watering-place in England, saying that she needed the change, and that the climate of Scotland did not agree with her.

Charles could not grant the request, because he feared that the duke's return would be the signal for rebellion; but after three or four months' deliberation the favor of Princess Anne's company was granted to her parents, and she went to Scotland to join them.

Shortly after her arrival the Duke of York rode in state from Holyrood, and opened parliament as lord high commissioner from his brother, the king. The duchess, Princess Anne, and all their ladies were present on that occasion, and this was such an unusual sight that some of the old fogies considered it highly indecorous. The Scottish lords and chieftains had always settled their debates with dagger and sword, and it was in order to avoid such stormy scenes that the Duke of York introduced the refining influence of women's presence, and the effect was highly satisfactory. After the meeting James gave a banquet to the whole parliament, separate tables being laid for the lords and commons.

The city of Edinburgh returned the compliment with an entertainment to the Court of Scotland that cost more than fourteen hundred pounds sterling.

After their royal highnesses recovered from the shock occasioned by the death of their little daughter, life at Holyrood became one long scene of gayety and brilliancy. There were balls, plays, and masquerades night after night,



[275]and musical dramas, similar to the opera of the present day, in which the Princess Anne and other ladies of quality took part. So long as the plays were moral, Mary Beatrice honored them with her presence; for she believed that the stage ought to be a medium for giving wholesome instruction to the public, but she would countenance nothing coarse or vulgar.

A.D. 1682. Affairs took such a favorable turn for James enuring the following year that he was recalled to England. He arrived with the Duchess and Princess Anne at Whitehall on the twenty-sixth of May, having been escorted up the river by a procession of barges, among which was the one containing the king and queen, who had gone to welcome them. In the evening the city of London was illuminated, and the rejoicing on account of the banished duke's return was universal.

A.D. 1684. St. James's Palace again became the home of the royal pair, where they had a little daughter born in August, but it died within a few weeks. Two years later, so firm had the duke's position become, that he was once more offered the post of lord admiral, which he eagerly accepted. During the period of peace and national prosperity that preceded the death of Charles II., Princess Anne married Prince George of Denmark, but remained with her parents for awhile.

A.D. 1685. A plan to banish the Duke of York once more had just been set on foot when King Charles died, and made way for him to mount the throne as James II. Mary Beatrice felt so grieved at the death of her brother-in-law that she could not rejoice at her own advancement; for Charles had been uniformly kind and amiable towards her, and she knew that she had lost a friend when he died.

Compliments and congratulations were showered upon [276]the new king from all sides, and on the first Sunday after his accession he was prayed for from every pulpit in the metropolis. King James began his reign with some very necessary reforms; he forbade drinking and swearing among others, and expressed his entire disapprobation of duelling, which he declared was no mark of courage.

The queen's health was not good at this time, and she became so pale that in spite of her religious scruples her husband advised her to rouge, as other court ladies did, and she complied. The first time Father Seraphin, a monk, saw her so disfigured he expressed his surprise, and she explained that she had resorted to paint to conceal her palor, whereupon the monk replied, bluntly: "Madame, I would rather see your majesty yellow or even green than rouged."

The twenty-third of April, St. George's day, was appointed for the coronation of the king and queen. The crown jewels had all been stolen by the Roundheads during the civil wars, so everything had to be supplied for the new queen, and the crown that was made specially for her was valued at one hundred and eleven thousand nine hundred pounds.

On the Thursday previous to the coronation, the king washed the feet of fifty-two poor men, that number corresponding with his age. On the appointed day the queen, who had slept at St. James's Palace, performed her devotions as usual, and was then attired by her women in a royal robe of purple velvet, bordered with ermine, and looped with cords and tassels of pearls. Her tight-fitting frock underneath was of rich white and silver brocade, ornamented with pearls and precious stones. On her head was a cap of purple velvet, turned up with ermine and edged with a band of gold, set with large diamonds. As soon as her toilet was completed, the queen was carried in her chair [277]to Westminster, where she rested in a private room until the king and all those who were to take part in the ceremony had assembled.

When everything was ready, her majesty entered Westminster Hall, attended by her lord chamberlain, her other officers and ladies; the king entered at the same time by another door with his attendants, and the royal pair took their seats under separate canopies at the upper end of the hall.

After the king's regalia had been delivered to him with the usual formalities, each article was placed on a table covered with rich tapestry. Then the queen received the crown, sceptre, and ivory rod with the dove, which were likewise deposited on the table, and subsequently distributed by the lord great chamberlain to the noblemen appointed to carry them. These noblemen walked first in the procession, then followed the queen, between the Bishops of London and Winchester, under a rich canopy, supported by sixteen barons. Four noble ladies carried her majesty's train, and eight bed-chamber women followed. The king's procession came next, and all proceeded in solemn state through a passage made by a double line of horse and foot guards to the abbey. The path was thickly strewn with fresh flowers by six young ladies, dressed in pointed bodices, with full brocaded skirts, looped back over rich petticoats. They wore hoods, gloves, and deep ruffles falling from the elbow. Trumpets were blown, drums beat a march, and the choir sang the well-known anthem, "O Lord, grant the king a long life!" etc., all the way to the church.

It required several hours for all the ceremonies of the coronation to be performed, and the devotion of the queen in following the prayers and making the responses was observed by all present. King James had bestowed a great [278]deal of pains on his wife's regalia, but none on his own, so the crown that had been made for Charles II. was used for him, though it did not fit at all. The heads of the two brothers were as different as their characters, and it was regarded as an ominous sign that the crown could not be made to stay on James's head.

The queen performed a noble deed of charity on that day that brought the blessings of thousands upon her head. She released all prisoners who were in jail for small debts, and herself paid every sum not exceeding five pounds. No wonder that the air rang with cries of "Long live Queen Mary!"

When the ceremonies at the abbey were concluded, the procession returned to Westminster Hall, and their majesties rested in private rooms until all the company had taken their places at seven long tables which were laid for the banquet. Then the king, preceded by his great state officers, entered with the crown on his head, and the sceptre and orb in either hand, and seated himself in his chair of state at the head of the royal table. The queen did the same, her place being at the king's left hand. Most of the ancient ceremonies of coronation banquets were revived that day, and some of them are so curious that they will bear recounting. Certain lords went to the kitchen to receive the dishes and present them to their majesties, which was done in this way: The master of the horse called for a dish of meat, wiped the cover and the dish carefully, tasted the contents, and then ordered it to be conveyed to the royal table, he preceding the first course on horseback the full length of the hall, followed by a train of the principal officers of the household. Thirty-two dishes were brought up by the Knights of the Bath, and a number of others by private gentlemen. When the dinner was placed on the table, the lord chamberlain, carvers, cupbearers, and [279]assistants went to the king's cupboard and washed; then the great basin was brought for the king to wash his hands. Before doing so he delivered his sceptre to a nobleman appointed to hold it, and the orb to the Bishop of Bath. The queen washed also, but she used only a wet napkin presented by the Earl of Devonshire on his knees. Grace was said, and their majesties sat down to the dinner, which consisted of a thousand dishes; among them were many Scotch dainties which reminded the king and queen of the hospitalities they had received in the North.

Before the second course Sir Charles Dymoke rode into the hall on a splendid white horse, preceded by trumpeters, and attended by two gentlemen, one bearing his lance, the other his target. He was dressed in white armor, and wore a red, white, and blue plume in his helmet. He was brought up to the royal table, where the herald proclaimed his challenge, and the champion threw down the gauntlet. This was repeated three times, when the king drank from a gold cup which he presented to his champion, who then rode out of the hall. Several lords presented wine to the king on their knees, each one receiving the silver or gold cup his majesty drank out of for a present.

When the dinner was ended grace was said, the washing of hands was repeated with the same ceremony as before, and their majesties withdrew. In the retiring-room they delivered their regalia to the Dean of Westminster, whose duty it was to keep such valuables under lock and key.

One of King James's first acts after he ascended the throne was to release several thousand Roman Catholics and members of other churches who had been imprisoned for refusing to worship according to the prescribed laws of England. He also put a stop to the practice that had been permitted for many years of people informing against one another about their religious beliefs. As this was often [280]resorted to merely to gratify some personal spite, and had been the means of bringing many an innocent person to the stake, King James did well to abolish it; but he was fighting the prejudices of the people, and could more easily have taken an impregnable fortress, as he soon found to his cost. Many of his subjects were offended at the display James made of his own religion, particularly when he opened a Catholic chapel at Whitehall, and insisted on going there in state with his wife, attended by the high officers of their household, to receive the sacrament. His lord treasurer, the Earl of Rochester, pretended to be ill as an excuse for absenting himself. The Dukes of Norfolk and Somerset openly refused to attend. It was the duty of Lord Godolphin, the queen's chamberlain, to lead her majesty by the hand to her place in the chapel, and to the altar when she chose to receive the sacrament. Although a Protestant, the chamberlain was so charmed with her majesty's beauty and graceful manners that he would not forego his privilege.

King James summoned parliament in June because the Duke of Argyle raised a rebellion in Scotland, while Monmouth did the same in England, and funds were required to suppress both. Monmouth had always been one of James's bitterest and most dangerous enemies, because he thought he had a claim to the throne; he therefore issued a proclamation, denouncing the king "as a usurper, a murderer, a traitor, and a tyrant." He accused James of burning the city of London, of murdering Godfrey,—both events are treated of in the last reign,—of cutting the throat of Essex, and of poisoning his brother, Charles II. He raised an army of ten thousand men, and received so much encouragement at Taunton that he proclaimed himself king, and set a price on the head of "the usurper, James, Duke of York."



[283]Such prompt and active measures were taken by the royal party that both Argyle and Monmouth were defeated and captured. The latter implored the king for mercy, and succeeded in obtaining a private interview. James had forgiven this bold man for many personal offences when he was Duke of York, but now his position was altered. He was King of England, and could not find it in his conscience to pardon an offender who had plunged his realm into civil war, and sacrificed the lives of three thousand of his subjects. Story, the orator, was taken prisoner for assisting Monmouth with his exciting speeches, that went far towards raising the popular indignation against the sovereign.

When summoned to appear before the council he looked so haggard, neglected, and dirty that King James exclaimed, "Is that a man, or what is it?" On being informed that it was the rebel Story, his majesty replied: "Oh, Story; I remember him—a rare fellow, indeed." Then turning towards him, the king asked: "Pray, Story, you were in Monmouth's army in the west, were you not?"

"Yes, an't please your majesty."

"Pray, you were a commissary there, were you not?" asked the king.

"Yes, an't please your majesty."

"And you made a speech before great crowds of people, did you not?" was the next question,

"Yes, an't please your majesty," answered Story.

"Pray, if you have not forgot what you said, let us have a taste of your fine speech, some specimen of the flowers of your rhetoric."

"I told them, an't please your majesty, that it was you who fired the city of London," boldly answered Story.

"A rare rogue, upon my word," exclaimed James; "and, pray, what else did you tell them?"

[284]"I told them, an't please your majesty, that you poisoned your brother."

"Impudence in the utmost height of it!" said the king. "Pray, let us have something further, if your memory serves you."

"I further told them," continued Story, "that your majesty appeared to be fully determined to make the nation both papists and slaves."

The king had heard enough, and no doubt wondered at the audacity of a man who dared to accuse him to his face of crimes that his very soul would have revolted at. But with remarkable clemency his majesty added: "To all this I doubt not but a thousand other villanous things were added. But what would you say, Story, if after all this I were to grant your life?"

He answered, "That he would pray for his majesty as long as he lived."

Thereupon he was freely pardoned, but Monmouth and Argyle were executed.

This victory of King James's would have increased his popularity and made him extremely powerful, had it not been for the cruel deeds that resulted from it. But Colonel Kirke and Chief-Justice Jeffreys were two barbarians, who caused the execution of thousands, whether innocent or guilty; going from one town to another whence Monmouth had gathered his forces, and committing most unheard-of cruelties.

Such deeds, added to the mistake James made in attempting to have everything his own way, regardless of the will of parliament, led to his ruin and downfall. Popular indignation was aroused against all Roman Catholics, King James included, when Louis XIV. revoked the edict of Nantes. This was a law that had been made by Henry IV., granting the free exercise of religion to all Protestants, and [285]when it was withdrawn, of course, persecutions followed. The result was that nearly fifty thousand Protestants sought refuge in England, and King James treated them with a great deal of consideration.

A.D. 1687. The queen spent part of the spring of 1687 at Richmond Palace, while James visited his camp at Hounslow; but her health was so poor that she was ordered by her physicians to take a course of treatment at Bath, and while there news of her mother's death reached her. This was a sad bereavement, and one from which Mary Beatrice did not soon recover. It opened a correspondence between her and the Prince of Orange, who, while expressing affectionate sympathy, was secretly plotting for the overthrow of his royal father-in-law. The king was very much under the influence of Sunderland, and of the Jesuit, Father Petre, both bad advisers; but he was also on terms of intimacy with William Penn, the founder of the State of Pennsylvania. This high-minded Quaker entered the king's presence one day, shortly after he ascended the throne, with his hat on his head. James immediately removed his, whereupon Penn said: "Friend James, why dost thou uncover thy head?" The king replied with a smile: "Because it is the fashion here for only one man to wear his hat.".

Penn was sent to Holland to persuade William, Prince of Orange, to concur with the king in trying to do away with those laws that interfered with religious privileges in England, but met with no success, either with him or his wife, Mary.

A.D. 1688. Queen Mary Beatrice had a little son born at St. James's Palace in 1688, and there was great rejoicing among the king's friends when the infant prince appeared, which was echoed in Edinburgh.

The royal father felt so happy at the birth of his son that, [286]in an evil hour, he granted forgiveness to Nathaniel Hook, who had been the Duke of Monmouth's chaplain. This man became one of the tools of William of Orange, and acted as a spy on the actions of the sovereign who had shown him such mercy.

A grand display of fireworks took place in honor of the prince's birth when he was a few weeks old, and the royal couple were present at the palace window to witness it. Mary Beatrice was gratified by a letter of congratulation sent by the pope on the birth of her son, because his holiness had never been friendly since she married without his consent, nor was he now, as we shall see.

The persons who were anything but pleased at the little fellow's appearance in the world were William of Orange and his wife, because both felt that he was in their way as heir to the crown.

One of William's agents was discovered at Rome in secret correspondence with the pope's secretary, Count Cassoni. He was disguised as a peddler of artificial fruit, which, on being opened, were found to contain slips of paper, written in cypher, that disclosed a plan for the destruction of the king and the little prince. William of Orange was at the bottom of the conspiracy, and intended to carry out his purpose in this way: The pope was to supply funds to be used by the Prince of Orange for the invasion of England, which coming from such a source would not be suspected. All this was disclosed by the slips of paper contained in the fruit, and reached the ears of King James himself.

The royal infant was so very ill when he was about two months old that it was thought each moment would be his last; however, he was provided with a good healthy nurse and got well, much to the delight of his parents, and the disgust of those whose interest it was to wish him out of the [287]way. Then the king and queen with their household removed to Whitehall, and soon after her majesty's birthday was observed with the usual ceremonies and rejoicings.

Mary Beatrice kept up a regular correspondence with the Prince of Orange, with whom she had always been on the most loving terms, and did not know what to make of the news that came to her about this time. It was that the Dutch fleet was hovering off the coast of England, ready at a moment's notice to make an attack. The queen could not believe such horrible tidings, and wrote her daughter: "That it was reported the Prince of Orange was coming over with an army, and that her highness would accompany him; but she never would believe her capable of turning against a good father, who, she believed, had always loved her the best of all his children." It was, nevertheless, true, and the storm that was to drive King James from the throne was gathering darkly and surely. James had committed some grave mistakes as a ruler, as a politician, as a theologian, and gladly would he have made amends, but it was too late. The King of France offered assistance, but with all his faults James loved his country too well to allow a foreign army to come to his rescue. He preferred other measures, whereby he hoped and fondly expected to avert the horrors of civil war. But his enemies were in his very household, and treachery surrounded him on all sides. The men who breakfasted with him in the morning, and pretended to be most loyal, deserted him before night. When he ought to have gone in person to repel the attacks of the Dutch fleet, he was persuaded by traitors to stay and defend the metropolis. When at last he did go he was so ill, so broken down, both in mind and body as to be utterly unfit for exertion of any kind. His confidential councillors went over to the enemy, and as the Prince of Orange advanced with his forces, James retreated towards London, [288]paralyzed by the treachery that was daily brought to light. But the most heartrending blow of all awaited him on his return to the metropolis, for the first news he heard was that Princess Anne had deserted him. "God help me!" he exclaimed, bursting into tears, "My own children have forsaken me in my distress." When he entered the palace he added in the bitterness of his grief, "Oh, if mine enemies only had cursed me, I could have borne it!"

Now, the unfortunate king's anxiety was for the faithful wife who had awaited his return in fear and trembling, and the innocent baby whose life the fond father feared was in danger. The valiant James Stuart of former years no longer existed; for he would not have submitted to the advance of a foe without offering desperate resistance, nor would he have abandoned his country at a moment when she needed his services.

The heart-broken King James summoned his council, asked their advice, and appealed to their loyalty. They told him "he had no one to blame but himself," but offered no comfort or assistance. Indignation at the base treatment of those who ought to have stood by him in his adversity and grief, at the thought of the strait to which his own bad management had brought himself and his dear ones, had turned poor King James's mind; he could no longer protect his realm, for he was not in a condition to decide clearly on any subject. His entire attention was now turned towards the only two beings who were left him in the world,—his wife and baby; and those he was determined to save though he should forfeit his own life.

It so happened that two Frenchmen, named Count de Lauzun and his friend St. Victor, had become so interested in King James and the state of affairs in England that they had offered their services to the distressed sovereign. To these two gentlemen James resolved to intrust the care of [289]his wife and child, and they eagerly consented to undertake the dangerous task of conveying them to France. They met the king and decided upon a plan so secretly that it was not suspected by any one. St. Victor went to Gravesend and hired two yachts,—one in the name of an Italian lady about to return to her own country, the other in that of Count Lauzun.

December 9 was the day appointed for the queen to leave London. It was Sunday, but some of the advanced troops of the prince's army, who had dispersed in different parts of the city, began the day by burning Catholic houses and chapels, and creating a tumult that terrified the peaceful citizens, while tidings of other dreadful occurrences came from all parts of the kingdom. When night approached the queen implored her husband to allow her to remain and share his peril, but he assured her that he would follow her within twenty-four hours, and that it was necessary for the safety of their child that she should precede him. At ten o'clock their majesties went to bed, and when all was dark and quiet in the palace they got up and began preparations for departure. Shortly after midnight St. Victor ascended a secret staircase to the king's apartment. He was dressed like a common sailor, though he was well-armed underneath his coarse attire, and brought a disguise for the queen. Lady Strickland was in waiting that night, and assisted her majesty until two o'clock, when all who were to share the journey met in the apartment of Madame Labadie, where the prince had been carried secretly some time before.

Turning to the count, King James said: "I confide my queen and son to your care; all must be hazarded to convey them with the utmost speed to France." Reserving a silence that was more eloquent than words, the queen gave her husband a parting look, then crossed the grand hall, [290]and stole softly down the back-stairs with St. Victor, who had possessed himself of the keys. The two nurses followed close behind with the sleeping infant. A coach that St. Victor had borrowed from an Italian friend, without telling him to what use it was to be employed, stood at the gate. The queen, Count de Lauzun, and the two nurses with the baby entered, while St. Victor took his seat beside the coachman, and Mary Beatrice left Whitehall never to return. The coach had to pass six sentinels, who called out, "Who goes there?" Each time St. Victor replied boldly, "A friend," and, showing the keys, was permitted to pass without opposition. At Westminster the fugitives entered a boat in which St. Victor had crossed on several previous nights with his gun and a basket of cold provisions to make believe that he was a sportsman and thus avoid suspicion. But this particular night was so stormy, and the rain poured in such torrents, that the boatman must have known no unimportant errand would tempt a woman with an infant six months old to make so dangerous a trip, for the river had swollen, and the wind was blowing violently. When the travellers reached the opposite bank, which was at last accomplished after a great deal of difficulty, St. Victor looked anxiously around for the carriage that ought to have stood in waiting as he had arranged; but Monsieur Dusions, one of her majesty's pages, appeared promptly at a call, and said that it was still at the inn. St. Victor ran to fetch it, leaving De Lauzun to protect the queen, who stood for shelter under the walls of the old church at Lambeth, with her infant clasped close to her breast, dreading lest he should wake and betray her presence by his cries. But the little prince behaved well throughout the journey, happily unconscious of the danger to which he was exposed. Meanwhile St. Victor, at the inn-yard had excited some curiosity by his agitated manner, and his foreign [291]accent, which prompted a man on watch to start out with his lantern to reconnoitre. Seeing that he directed his steps straight to where the queen was waiting, St. Victor hastened with all speed to the other side of the way, and then put himself in the man's path as though by accident, awkwardly pretended to be trying to clear the road, when the two came in contact and went rolling over in the mud together. The Frenchman was profuse in his apologies, which mollified the other man, who returned to the inn to relight his lantern and wash off the mud. This gave the queen and her party time to proceed, and before they had cleared three miles they were met by one of her majesty's equerries, who, by the king's thoughtfulness, had been sent with a fresh horse and a pair of boots for St. Victor, of which he was sorely in need by that time. When the queen reached Gravesend a little boat conveyed her to the yacht, that was filled with friends who had preceded her from London, and were determined to share her exile. Among them were Lord and Lady Powis, Anna Montecuculi, who had gone to England with Mary Beatrice when she married; Father Giverlai, the queen's confessor; William Walgrave, her physician; Marquis Montecuculi, Lord and Lady O'Brien Clare, Mesdames Labadie and Strickland, and two pages. These had gone down the Thames, consequently had made the passage in less time than the royal party had required.

The captain of the yacht had not the-slightest suspicion of the rank of the Italian washerwoman, so anxiously awaited, who embarked with a bundle of clothes under her arm, in which her little prince was safely ensconced. The queen was always ill at sea, but heretofore she had been provided with all the comforts her husband could devise, as well as the pleasure of his presence. It was very different now, when not daring to encounter the Dutch men-of-war, she was forced to cross the channel in an ordinary [292]packet, deprived of common necessaries; for none of the functionaries thought it necessary to pay attention to a poor washerwoman.

As soon as she boarded the vessel the queen went below to avoid observation, while Madame Labadie, who knew Grey, the captain, engaged him in conversation until the sails were hoisted and the yacht well under way. King James had ordered De Lauzun, in case the captain discovered the fugitives or betrayed any intention to put his wife and son into the hands of the Dutch, to shoot him dead. The count stationed himself in a position to keep strict watch over every motion of the captain's, determined to act promptly in case of need; but that officer steered his course safely through a fleet of fifty Dutch ships, and landed his passengers at Calais, as ignorant of the queen's presence as when he left the English coast.

Sixteen years before Mary of Modena had embarked on a royal yacht attended by her mother and a train of noblemen desirous of doing her honor; now she landed at the same port, a forlorn fugitive, disguised as a peasant, to seek refuge from the storm that had driven her from a throne. It would be hard to decide at which period' she was more an object of sympathy, if we recall the reluctance with which she left her convent home to unite her destinies with those of a man whom she had never seen, and behold her now, deprived of her regal state, it is true, but possessing a husband who has won her heart, and a dear little baby, who is her idol and his.

The governor of Calais wished to show Mary Beatrice the honors due a queen of Great Britain, but she declined, and took up her residence at a private house to await the arrival of her husband, whom she expected to follow her in a few hours. But the governor sent everything to her house that the queen needed for comfort, and fired a royal salute at her departure. [293]Soon after landing at Calais, Mary Beatrice wrote a pathetic letter to Louis XIV., asking his protection for herself and son. He replied by sending his first equerry with the royal carriages to attend the queen and her suite to Paris, and ordered that every honor due her rank should be shown the royal lady en route.

The king did not join his wife as he had promised, and she could receive no reliable intelligence as to his fate. Her heart was torn with conflicting rumors, and she spent her days in tears at a convent at Boulogne, to which place she had removed.

A.D. 1689. It was not until the nineteenth of January that the queen knew the sad truth. Then she heard from the vice-admiral of England, who had arrived at Calais, that the king had set out on his journey, when he was arrested by order of the Prince of Orange and taken back under strict guard. Overcome with despair, the queen decided to send her son on to Paris, and return to London to share her husband's peril. But her faithful attendants dissuaded her from a course that could only have increased the king's trouble without rendering him the least service, and urged her to be guided by the directions he had given her at parting. That very day King Louis's equerry arrived with letters and messages from his majesty and a noble escort to convey the queen, with her attendants, to the Castle of St. Germain, which had been put in readiness for their reception. So anxious were the faithful followers of Mary Beatrice to remove her from the coast, where she might at any moment be tempted by some favorable opportunity to return to England, that they entreated her to accept the invitation of the King of France at once.

She yielded, and left Boulogne the next day. On arriving at Montrieul a report reached the royal party that King James was still at Whitehall. [294]Now we must go back and see what really happened to James after his wife's departure. He wandered about in a state of nervous agitation until St. Victor returned from Gravesend with the announcement that the queen had embarked safely, and he had seen the yacht well on her course. Then his majesty brightened up, although there was not an hour but news reached him of the advance of his enemy's troops. Having summoned his council to meet at ten the next morning, the king went to bed as usual, without any intention of being present.

At midnight he arose, disguised himself in a black wig, and shabby, plain clothes, and attended by Sir Edward Hales, descended by a private staircase to the garden and proceeded as the queen had done two nights before. He crossed the Thames in a little row-boat to Vauxhall, and when in the middle of the river threw in the great seal that he had taken from Whitehall. This is an unaccountable proceeding, because he evidently meant to make use of the seal after he got to France, and he must have changed his mind very suddenly. On arriving at Fever-sham after travelling all night, Sir Edward Hales sent his servant to the post-office, and as his residence was in that neighborhood, his livery was immediately known. A gang of ruffians who had formed themselves into an association to prevent the flight of Roman Catholics to France, dogged the man's footsteps to the river side, where they discovered that Sir Edward had taken refuge on a custom-house boat. At eleven o'clock that night fifty of the gang, armed with swords and pistols, boarded the boat, rushed into the cabin? seized the king and his companion. Perceiving that his majesty was not recognized, Sir Edward took Ames, the leader of the ruffians aside, put fifty guineas in his hand and promised a hundred more if he would allow them to escape. The man took the money and said he would go [295]ashore to make arrangements for them, but advised them to hand over all their valuables to his keeping, because he could not answer for the conduct of his men while he was gone. The king gave him three hundred guineas and his watch, but contrived to conceal his coronation ring and three diamond pins that belonged to the queen. As soon as the tide rose in the morning the gang, who had mistaken James for Father Petre, rowed the boat to shore, and putting their two prisoners in a carriage, drove them to an inn amidst the shouts and yells of a mob that had assembled there. Suddenly a seaman in the crowd who had served under James recognized him, and bursting out into tears, knelt and begged to kiss his hand. The king was touched at this proof of devotion and wept, while the ruffians who had robbed and insulted him fell on their knees and sued for pardon. Then returning his majesty's sword and jewels, the seamen who were present declared "that not a hair of his head should be touched." Even then, had the king been in a proper state of mind, something might have been done for his cause, surrounded as he was at that instant by a band of loyal subjects; but he was mentally exhausted, and he began to talk in a wild, incoherent manner, until an alarming fit of nose-bleed left him in a helpless condition. For two whole days nobody in London knew of King James's whereabouts, until a Kentish peasant presented himself at the council chamber with a letter from his, majesty, stating his condition and demanding assistance. Some of the lords were for treating the letter with silent contempt, but they were overruled, and an escort was despatched to bring his majesty back to Whitehall. He was received with every demonstration of loyalty, and might have raised a powerful army to repel his foes, but his day had gone by; he could only weep and bemoan his sad fate, constantly repeating: "God help me, whom can I trust? My own children have forsaken me!" [296]The king had been in London less than a week when he was rudely awakened at two o'clock one cold, stormy morning by three lords, who had openly avowed themselves his enemies. They came with an order from the Prince of Orange for him to leave Whitehall before ten o'clock and proceed to Rochester. He made the journey attended by a Dutch guard, who had orders from their prince to give their prisoner a chance to escape.

Accordingly the back door of the house at Rochester was purposely left unguarded, and between twelve and one on the morning of December 23, the king attended by two faithful companions, made his way to the river and was rowed down to Sheerness, where, boarding a fishing-boat, he was landed on Christmas day at a village near Boulogne.

The queen was at Beauvais when she heard of her husband's arrival on French soil, and forgetting all her misfortunes in this welcome news she raised her eyes to Heaven and exclaimed: "Then I am happy," and prayed aloud in the fulness of her heart.

It was on the twenty-eighth of December that Mary Beatrice approached St. Germain. King Louis XIV. had advanced with his son and brother to a village at the foot of the hill on which stood the castle to await his royal guests. His cavalcade consisted of a hundred coaches, and all the noble ladies and gentlemen who attended him were dressed in magnificent attire. When the queen drew near with her party, Louis left his coach and went forward to greet her. His officers stopped the first carriage, supposing it to contain her majesty, but the occupants proved to be the little prince with his governess and his nurses. All alighted out of respect to the king, who took the baby in his arms, hugged and kissed him tenderly, and promised to cherish and protect the unconscious child.



[299]Meanwhile Mary Beatrice had left her carriage and walked towards his majesty, who saluted her affectionately. After a great many complimentary speeches on both sides, the king presented the dauphin, as his son was styled, and monsieur his brother, then the four royal personages got into his majesty's coach and were driven to the Palace of St. Germain, which was to be the future home of Mary Beatrice. They alighted at the inner court, where, after placing everything at the queen's command, Louis led her to the apartments that had been newly-fitted up for the Prince of Wales. Such an affectionate welcome brought tears to the eyes of Mary Beatrice, who began to feel that she now needed nothing but the arrival of her beloved husband to fill her heart with peace.

St. Germain Palace had been gorgeously fitted up for Queen Mary Beatrice, and contained every article of luxury that she could possibly desire. On her toilet table stood a casket of exquisite workmanship, of which Tourolle, the king's upholsterer presented her the key with rather a significent air. This she observed; but her mind was so occupied that she did not remember to open the casket until the next day, when she beheld six thousand bright, shining louis d'ors which the generous King Louis had placed there for her use.

In the morning Louis and the dauphin sent to make inquiries about their guests, and at six in the evening they paid her majesty a visit, attended by Monsieur and the Duc de Chartres. She was in bed, feeling ill from the anxiety and fatigue she had undergone, but that did not prevent her receiving the royal guests. Queens were not allowed any privacy in those days, sick or well, and her majesty's chamber was soon crowded with the courtiers who had followed their sovereign, while he and the dauphin sat on the bed and chatted quite merrily. In about half an hour King [300]James's arrival was announced, and Louis went out to meet him. James bowed low as his kinsman advanced, but Louis took him in his arms and embraced him warmly three our four times. Then the two kings conversed in a low tone for fifteen minutes, after which monsieur and the dauphin were presented to James, who was then conducted to his wife's room. As they entered, Louis said, playfully: "Madame, I bring a gentleman of your acquaintance, whom you will be very glad to see." The queen uttered a cry of joy, and the royal couple surprised the French courtiers by hugging and kissing each other right before them all. James was then led to the royal nursery, where it gladdened his heart to see the comforts that surrounded his darling boy. Louis was scrupulously mindful of every act of courtesy towards his unfortunate kinsman, and sent him a present of ten thousand pounds in such a delicate manner as not to wound his pride.

St. Germain was familiar to King James, for it was there that he lived with his mother and the royal family of France during the troublous times that preceded his father's death. After a lapse of twenty-eight years he returned, again a fugitive, the last survivor of those who had shared his first adversity. Mother, brothers, sisters, all were dead, his two daughters had deserted him; the son of his best beloved sister, who had become his son-in-law, had driven him from his throne, and his wife and little son were deprived of their rights because of his fall. An appalling list of calamities; yet James bore them with a calmness that astonished his French friends. Both he and his wife felt their dependence, and desired to live as much in private as possible; but it was not permitted. The court of St. Germain was formed on the model of King Louis's, but the French officers were soon replaced by those members of the queen's household who followed her, though their [301]property was confiscated and they forfeited the rights of citizenship by so doing. Mary Beatrice's old coachman, who had formerly served Oliver Cromwell, followed his royal mistress to St. Germain, and continued to drive her state coach until he died of old age.

A.D. 1689. At first the etiquette of the French court was very irksome to Mary Beatrice, for it was much more formidable than in England, and she would have made many mistakes had she not had the good sense to refer all matters of precedency to Louis XIV. himself, and in every case to abide by his decision. The wife of the dauphin refused to call because the size and position of the chair she was to occupy in the presence of the Queen of England was not according to her fancy, so Mary Beatrice waived ceremony and made the first call, and in course of time it was arranged who was to sit, who was to stand, which noble lady or gentleman was to be placed to the right or the left of one of the royal personages, who was to go first, the size, shape, and height of the chair, besides many other matters that appear trivial to us; then all went smoothly. Mary Beatrice became the fashion; Louis XIV., the Grande Monarque, had held her up as a model for his daughter-inlaw, and said: "See what a queen should be," and that was enough to bring the whole court to her feet. Every one admired her ready wit, her grace, her beauty, but above all, her charming manners and her devotion to her husband. One day when King Louis was caressing her baby she said: "I had envied the happiness of my son in being unconscious of his misfortunes, but now I regret the unconsciousness which prevents him from being sensible of your majesty's goodness to him."

The exiled king and queen were invited to St. Cyr to witness a new tragedy by Racine, and Mary Beatrice sat between her husband and Louis XIV. during the performance. [302]Next day Louis entertained them at his palace at the Trianon, where the two kings had a long private conference, while the queen played cards with some ladies and gentlemen.

Meanwhile affairs in England were going badly for the royal cause, and on the sixth of February a very small majority in parliament decided that the Prince and Princess of Orange should be proclaimed king and queen.

James was still undisputed King of Ireland, and his subjects there urged him to visit their country; so, with a force consisting of a hundred noble French gentlemen, Lauzun being of the number, besides twenty-five hundred English and Scotch emigrants, he decided to go. King Louis supplied him with vessels and money, and offered troops, but James replied: "I will recover my own dominions with my own subjects or perish in the attempt." After his departure the queen left St. Germain and went with her little son to the convent of Poissy, intending to pass her time in prayers for the safety of her lord. From Poissy she went for awhile to the convent of Chaillot, several of the nuns of that community being among her best friends.

A.D. 1690. King James was received with joy in Ireland, where his viceroy, Tyrconnel, met him with an army of forty thousand men, but they were composed of half-clad peasants, who were willing to fight, but had neither arms nor military discipline. With such forces little could be expected, and though the king met with a few trifling victories at first he really gained nothing. Mary Beatrice pawned or sold her jewels to keep him supplied with more money than she could manage to borrow from the French government, but all to no avail; one defeat came close upon the heels of another, until the battle of the Boyne convinced James that his cause was hopeless.

Fortunately the queen had not heard of this dreadful



[305]defeat until news reached her that her husband was safe in France, and all misfortunes sank into insignificance compared with the anxiety she had suffered on his account. In October the royal pair were invited to Fontainebleau, one of King Louis's most splendid palaces, to spend a few days, during which they were entertained with most generous magnificence. King Louis always sat at the queen's left hand, and showed her marked attention on every occasion. When it rained the guests remained indoors, and played a game of cards called loo in England, paume in France, that had been introduced by the Dutch. They were treated to a stag roast in the park by moonlight, and enjoyed seeing the animal that had been killed by the two kings in the morning roasted whole in the evening.

A.D. 1691. During all this time Mary Beatrice was in correspondence with a great many people in England, who were most anxious for King James's restoration, and never consented to an allegiance to William and Mary. Dryden was one of these; he was Poet Laureate during James's reign, and one of the queen's numerous admirers.

A.D. 1692. Assisted by King Louis XIV., James made another effort to regain his crown, but was defeated. The little prince was at that time a handsome bright boy, four years of age, and before the king departed on the expedition which terminated so disastrously he made his son a Knight of the Garter.

King James became very despondent when his bad luck continued, and wrote Louis XIV.: "My evil star has had an influence on the arms of your majesty, always victorious but when fighting for me. I entreat you, therefore, to interest yourself no more for a prince so unfortunate, but permit me to withdraw with my family to some corner of the world where I may cease to be an interruption to your majesty's wonted course of prosperity and glory."

[306]In the summer Queen Mary Beatrice had a daughter, and the king was so pleased when he beheld the child that he called it "his comforter," and said: "He had now one daughter who had never sinned against him." The princess was baptized with great pomp at St. Germain, and King Louis XIV., who acted as sponsor, gave her the name of Louisa Mary.

Mary Beatrice was now the mother of two fine healthy children, and both she and the king were happier than they had been in many a day.

Every year Mrs. Penn, the wife of the founder of Pennsylvania, paid a visit to the queen at St. Germain, and always brought a great many presents from friends in England to the royal exiles.

A.D. 1695. At the beginning of the next year very important news was brought to St. Germain. It was of the death of Mary II., then Queen of England. It was naturally believed that after such an event the Princess Anne would assert her claim to the throne; but she was too shrewd to risk anything by an open rupture with King William, whose health was so bad that she decided to await the natural course of events. Meanwhile, she played a twofold game by her friendliness towards the king, while she kept up a secret correspondence with her father.

A.D. 1696. The partisans of James urged him to make an attack on England after the death of Mary II., assuring him that a force of only ten thousand men would be sufficient to reinstate him on the throne; but he appeared strangely indifferent about that time, and could obtain no assistance from the French court. The next year, however, Louis XIV. did grant the required assistance; but so many circumstances prevailed against poor James that he was again unsuccessful, and returned to St. Germain. With a mistaken zeal for his cause, some of James's adherents had [307]made an attack on the person of King William, which did no benefit to the exiled king, and caused the execution of many in England.

King James was so poor that the allowance made him by King Louis was not large enough to enable him to pay the pensions of those who had lost all their worldly possessions because of their loyalty to him, so he was obliged from time to time to sell the queen's jewels. Mary Beatrice wrote on this subject to her friend, the Abbess of Chaillot: "In respect to our poor, I shall never consider that I have done my duty until I have given them all I have." By degrees she parted with all her valuables for the relief of her unfortunate British followers.

A.D. 1697. In course of time circumstances compelled King Louis XIV. to acknowledge William as King of England; but in so doing he stipulated that Mary Beatrice should receive her dower regularly. Then the queen arranged that every payment should be made through the French king, to whom she owed so much; but she need not have troubled herself on that score, for although William charged the British nation with fifty thousand pounds annually for Mary Beatrice, he pocketed the entire amount and appropriated it to his own use. The excuse he gave was that King James and his wife were permitted to remain at St. Germain, though he had peremptorily demanded their removal from France.

A.D. 1701. King James's health had been poor for several months, and the queen had felt much anxiety on his account, though he did not grow perceptibly worse. One Sunday he had an epileptic fit, which came on in church. He was carried out in a state of insensibility, and continued ill for several weeks, during which the queen remained constantly at his bedside, attending to his wants and watching every symptom as only a devoted wife can. [308]Later, the king was removed to the baths of Bourbon, and Louis XIV. sent Fagon, his chief physician, to attend him, and paid all the expenses of the journey for the entire party. James improved so much that in less than three months he returned to St. Germain, in time for the celebration of the birthday fêtes of his children, both of which occurred in the month of June. The prince was fourteen at that time, and the princess was ten years of age.


But King James was not long to enjoy the society of his family, for the return of his illness laid him on his deathbed before many months. The French council held a meeting to decide upon the English succession when James's death should occur, and the dauphin was one of the majority who decided in favor of the Prince of Wales. It was Louis himself who conveyed the satisfactory intelligence to [309]the dying king. As he entered the bedroom one of the attendants aroused the invalid, who had been in a drowsy stupor all day, and announced the presence of the King of France. "Where is he?" asked James, with a painful effort.

"Sir, I am here," replied Louis; "and am come to see how you do."

"I am going to pay that debt which must be paid by all kings as well as their meanest subjects," returned James, slowly. "I give your majesty thanks for all your kindness to me and my afflicted family, and do not doubt its continuance, having always found you good and generous."

Louis then informed the king that he had something of the greatest importance to communicate, whereupon the attendants began to withdraw; but Louis exclaimed, "Let no one retire!" Then turning to James again, he continued: "I am come, sir, to acquaint you that whenever it shall please God to call your majesty out of this world, I will take your family under my protection, and will recognize your son, the Prince of Wales, as heir of your three realms." At these words, all present, both English and French, threw themselves at the feet of the powerful sovereign, who mingled his tears with those that were shed around him.

The dying king extended his arms to embrace his royal friend, and said: "Thank God, I die with perfect resignation, and forgive all the world."

He then begged as a last favor that there might be no pomp at his funeral ceremonies. "That is the only favor I cannot grant," replied Louis. James begged that any money King Louis might feel disposed to spend for that purpose should be employed for the relief of his followers, whom he commended to that monarch's care.

The queen was so grieved that she was often obliged to [310]hide herself so that her husband might not witness her tears. His bed was situated in an alcove, and she would spend hours on the other side of the curtains, anxiously waiting for any sound from the dying king. While Louis XIV. was communicating his comforting news, Mary Beatrice sent for her son and bade him throw himself at the feet of the kind-hearted monarch, and express his gratitude. Louis raised the boy and embraced him tenderly; then leading him into an adjoining room, conversed with him a long while, gave him some excellent advice, and promised to act the part of a father towards him.

King James had already taken leave of his children, but they were permitted to see him several times before he died; and he always smiled lovingly, even though he could not speak to them. The day before he expired King James bade farewell to the queen, and requested her to write to his daughter, the Princess Anne, and assure her of his forgiveness; also to charge her to atone to her brother for the injury she had done him. Then he gave some advice about the prince; and when Mary Beatrice was overcome with emotion, he asked tenderly: "Why is this? Are you not flesh of my flesh, and bone of my bone—are you not a part of myself? How is it, then, that one part of me should feel so differently from the other? I in joy and you in despair. My joy is in the hope I feel that God in his mercy will forgive me my sins and receive me into his beatitude, and you are afflicted at it. I have long sighed for this happy moment, and you know it well: cease, then, to lament for me. I will pray for you,—farewell!"

This was the last interview the queen had with her husband, for he sank into a state of unconsciousness, and died the next afternoon at three o'clock. It was Father Ruga, the queen's confessor, who informed her when all was over. Although the blow was expected, it was hard to bear; for [311]Mary Beatrice had hoped to the last that her husband might still be spared to her. Her resignation to the will of God was perfect; but her sorrow was heartfelt and bitter.

Crowds of French and English of all degrees passed in and out to take a last look at the dead king, who had requested that his chamber door might be left open for that purpose. Then all the courtiers went to the prince and saluted him as king, and at the same time he was proclaimed at the gates of St. Germain by the title of James III., King of England, Scotland, Ireland, and France.

Court etiquette required that the queen also should offer the homage of a subject to her boy. She said to him: "Sir, I acknowledge you for my king; but I hope you will not forget that you are my son." She was so overcome by this ceremony that she retired at once, and was driven to the convent of Chaillot, where she desired to pass the first days of her widowhood in complete solitude, refusing to see any one whatsoever.

The chapel had all been hung in black by the nuns as soon as the king's death was announced, and when the tolling of the bell warned them of Mary Beatrice's approach, they went in procession to receive her at the convent gate. She descended from her coach in silence, followed by four noble ladies who had accompanied her. The nuns gathered around her without speaking, the abbess kissed the hem of her robe, some of the sisters embraced her knees, and others respectfully pressed their lips to her hand, but no one ventured to offer a word of comfort.

The queen passed straight into the chapel; she was bowed down with grief, though she did not shed a tear. That time was passed, and she seemed stupefied. One of the nuns approached and asked in the words of the psalmist, "My soul, will you not be subject to God?" [312]"His will be done," replied the queen, in a tremulous voice. Prostrating herself before the altar, she remained long in prayer. At last the nuns begged her to eat, for she had partaken of no food since the night before, and they feared she would faint. She was led to her bedroom, but insisted on hearing more prayers, and complained that she could not weep, saying "that even that solace was denied her."

Her attendants were sent to bed, but two of the nuns passed the night with the queen, who moaned and sighed and prayed by turns with scarcely a moment's repose. The next night the king's heart was conveyed to Chaillot and placed near that of his mother; but by King Louis's order it was received so quietly that Mary Beatrice was not excited by it. However, a few hours later she assured the abbess that she felt it was near her, and spoke a great deal about her dead husband. Among other things, she said: "That he had felt his humiliation, and above all the injustice he had experienced, very keenly; but that the love of God had changed all his calamities into blessings."

Mary Beatrice would have liked to pass the rest of her days at Chaillot, but she had other duties to perform and many more years to live.

In his will King James had directed that he should be buried with his ancestors at Westminster Abbey; therefore the queen ordered that the funeral service should be performed in France, but that the body should remain unburied until the restoration of her son, which she fondly hoped would soon take place.

It was therefore at the chapel of the Benedictine Monks that the corpse of King James remained covered with the pall for many years, until all hope for the Stuart family had vanished forever.

The queen remained at Chaillot only four days, for her [313]children needed her at St. Germain, and she returned to them on the nineteenth of September.

The next day King Louis called on her, and she received him in a darkened room hung with black. He tried very hard to console the widowed queen by kind offers of protection to her and her son, and insisted upon her receiving the same courtesy from his ministers as though she had been queen regent really and not only in name.

A.D. 1702. However King James's will had given her that title, and her first steps was to publish a manifesto in the name of her son, setting forth his claim to the crown of Great Britain. It made little impression in England, but those who were opposed to King William in Scotland were anxious to bring the young king forward. So Lord Belhaven was sent to consult the queen as to what was best to do, and told her that if only her young son would declare himself a Protestant he should be proclaimed King of Scotland without waiting either for the death of William or the consent of parliament. Her majesty replied: "That she would never be the means of persuading her son to barter his hopes of Heaven for a crown." Then Lord Belhaven was willing to compromise, and said, "That if the prince would not change his religion, would he not agree that only a limited number of Romish priest, should enter his kingdom, and that he would make no attempt to alter the established religion?" This the queen freely promised in the name of her son, and then the lord declared that he and his party would do all in their power to establish King James's heir on the throne.

Mary Beatrice would have resigned herself to fate if she had not felt convinced that her son's rights were denied him so long as any Stuart claimed the crown. At the time of the prince's birth, parliament had decided that he should succeed his father, James II., and a new interest was [314]awakened in him on account of the sympathy felt in England for him and his widowed mother. Alarmed that such would be the state of affairs, William hired a notorious fellow to prove that the Prince of Wales was not the son of James II. and Mary Beatrice at all, but that one Mrs. Mary Grey was his real mother, who had been murdered in Paris shortly after his birth. A copy of the book containing a full account of this matter was presented to the lords, the ministers of state, and the lord mayor. Of course this statement was utterly false and absurd, and raised the indignation of the House of Commons to such a degree that Fuller, the man who got out the book, underwent the disgrace of the pillory. But as he had often been employed by William III. as a spy and had been punished more than once for perjury, he did not sink under the disgrace as an honest man would have done.

As soon as the news of King James's death reached William III. he was prepared with a blow to aim at his orphan cousin that he was determined should not fail if he could help it. It was an accusation of high treason, in which Mary Beatrice was also included. The bill, as William presented it to his parliament, did not designate his uncle's widow as the queen dowager, because he had pocketed her dower, and he desired to deprive her even of the honors due a royal lady. So she is called "Mary, late wife of the late King James."

Without describing all the scenes enacted in parliament while this disgraceful bill was under consideration, it is only necessary for us to know that it passed the House of Lords; but when it was laid before the Commons, they pitched it under the table.

The very last act of William III. was to affix the royal seal to the bill that he had exerted every means to have executed against the young Prince of Wales. He was on [315]his death-bed when it was presented for his signature, but controlled his almost paralyzed fingers enough for the accomplishment of this last act of hatred.

He expired the next day.

Mary Beatrice was so ill when this event occurred that no one ventured to speak of it in her presence. Her life hung on a thread for many days and depended for its continuance on absolute repose. Therefore she could take no steps towards claiming the crown of England for her son at the proper moment; and by the time she was convalescent her step-daughter Anne was peacefully settled on the throne, and all hope for the young prince vanished forever. But Simon Fraser, generally called Lord Lovat, had proclaimed the prince King of Scotland, in the county of Inverness as soon as the death of William III. was known there. When Mary Beatrice was well enough to attend to business, this man presented himself at St. Germain as the representative of a large party in his native land, and urged the queen-mother to send her son to Scotland to fight for his rights. He said that an army of twelve thousand men could easily be raised in the Highlands, provided the King of France would assist with arms and money, and that the Scottish people would spare no efforts if they could only see the prince for whom they were to fight in their midst. But Mary Beatrice considered her boy too young to undertake such a perilous enterprise; and the very thought of the fate that awaited him, should he fall into the hands of his enemies, caused her to refuse to let him leave her. Ambition was not the leading trait of the fallen queen.

A.D. 1703. In the autumn Lord Lovat applied to Mary Beatrice again, and represented affairs in Scotland and Ireland as so favorable to the interest of the prince that she was thoroughly deceived, and without consulting any of her [316]friends, sold all the jewels she had left, and gave the money to this treacherous creature. It was afterwards proved that Lovat was the bribed instrument of Queen Anne's cabinet, by whom all his expenses had been paid, while he pretended to be serving the Prince of Wales. He did a great deal of mischief, but like many knaves, bribed and intrigued until he overstepped the mark, and was arrested the next time he appeared in France. He was shut up at the Castle of Angoulême, where he was kept a close prisoner for several years.

A.D. 1704. In August Mary Beatrice attended a grand fête at Marli, given by Louis XIV. to celebrate the birth of a great-grandson. The King and Princess Louisa were present also, and were given the places of honor after their mother, who always sat at the right hand of Louis XIV. Poor Mary Beatrice had little heart for festivities of any sort, for she was suffering from an incurable malady which often compelled her to keep her bed for several days at a time, and her son's health was so delicate as to render him a constant source of anxiety to her. He was just seventeen years of age, and the Princess Louisa was thirteen. The latter had inherited all her mother's grace and beauty, and was considered quite an ornament at the French court.

A.D. 1705. The young king opened a ball at Marli with his sister, and all the time they were dancing the King of France stood as a mark of respect. He would have done the same every time had not the queen-mother, who sat at his side, persuaded him to sit down.

At all the festivals Mary Beatrice was placed between Louis XIV. and her son, while Princess Louisa and the immediate members of the French royal family occupied seats at the same table. But King Louis was not willing to risk more money or men in an attempt to raise an insurrection [317]against Queen Anne's government in Scotland. Even had he consented to do so, his ministers would have opposed it. All this time Godolphin, who in former days had felt so proud at being permitted to hand the queen to her chair in the royal chapel, was in secret correspondence with Mary Beatrice, and constantly flattered her with false hopes. If he had possessed sufficient courage to make a demand of Queen Anne and her cabinet for the payment of the royal widow's dower and all the money due her that William III. had appropriated to his own use, no doubt the claim would have been allowed. But fear lest certain crooked acts of his life might be disclosed rendered him irresolute and anxious to publicly maintain a neutral ground.

A.D. 1706. When the young king completed his eighteenth year he was treated by every one at the court of St. Germain as their sovereign, though the queen-mother was really the leader there as long as she lived. At this period young James began to take some share in state affairs, and showed no ordinary ability. He was a great favorite with King Louis, who made frequent visits, both public and private at St. Germain, and invited the exiles to every fête he gave at Marli, Versailles, and Trianon.

A.D. 1707. Notwithstanding all her cares, ill health, and disappointment, Mary Beatrice lived very pleasantly at St. Germain, where on fine summer afternoons she would walk with Louis XIV. in the park, attended by the whole court. It was on such occasions that the queen-mother would ask any favor that she might require at the hands of the monarch, and she was seldom refused. It gratified her to see the enjoyment her children derived from the parties of pleasure they frequently formed for the purpose of gathering flowers and wild strawberries in the neighboring forests, [318]or of rowing on the Seine to Pontalie. It was at that place that the Countess de Grammont lived in a rural château. She was a wealthy lady, who had once been one of the celebrated beauties at the court of Charles II., and now felt pleased to contribute to the happiness of the exiled Stuarts, instead of turning her back on them as many had done. She had known the young king and his sister from infancy, and when they made excursions with their court to her house nothing gave her greater pleasure than to provide banquets and entertainments of every description for them.

A.D. 1708. The Grande Monarque suddenly changed his mind in the spring, and determined to fit out a fleet, headed by the young king, for the purpose of making a descent on the coast of Scotland. Not a word was said about this matter until all the arrangements were completed; but as soon as the exiled king was informed of the project, he took hasty leave of his mother and sister and set out for Dunkirk, the place of embarkation, ordering his luggage to be sent after him. No sooner had he reached the coast than he was attacked by measles, which detained him several days. Becoming impatient of delay, he was at last carried on board one of the vessels of his fleet; but not before the English had been warned of his approach, and were on the lookout for him.

Sir George Byng commanded the English fleet, and it is said that he captured the "Salisbury," with the prince on board; but this is not positively known. If he did, he saved Queen Anne a great deal of perplexity by permitting his royal prisoner to sail out of the Frith of Forth, where he encountered the French fleet, and return to France, for her majesty certainly would not have known what to do with him.

The prince returned to St. Germain, but several persons



[321]of high rank were captured and sent to the Tower to await their trial for treason. Mary Beatrice wrote to the French minister, begging him to do what he could for the prisoners, by representing them as officers in the service of King Louis. But meanwhile Queen Anne's cabinet set a price on the head of "the pretended Prince of Wales," as they designated the young man. Queen Anne herself went further, and gave him the title of "the Pretender" in her address to parliament, knowing that such a name would do more to injure his claim to the throne than anything else.

Shortly after his return from his unsuccessful attempt to invade Scotland, the young prince entered the French army, and served in the Low Countries as a volunteer, under the command of the Duke de Vendôme, who esteemed him very highly. As he had not the means to equip a camp in accordance with his rank, the prince called himself the Chevalier de St. George, that being the order with which his royal father had invested him when he was only four years old.

A.D. 1709. The French met with dreadful defeat at Malplaquet. The Chevalier de St. George fought manfully, and made twelve charges at the head of the French troops, under a continuous fire of six hours from the British. His right arm received a sabre cut, but he did not shrink from his duty; and when the general sent despatches containing an account of the battle, he added: "The Chevalier de St. George behaved himself during the whole action with the utmost valor and energy." Mary Beatrice felt very proud of her son, and returned to St. Germain with her daughter to meet him, after having passed several weeks in complete seclusion at Chaillot convent.

A.D. 1710. The chevalier made a third campaign with the French army, but returned in bad health and spirits, [322]and spent the following winter with his mother and sister, keeping up their separate courts at St. Germain, as well as their poverty would admit. In the spring he made a tour of France; and during his absence Mary Beatrice retired to Chaillot again, where she was really happier than when compelled to observe court ceremonies. While there the royal family of France did not desert her, for they made her frequent visits, which she returned with her daughter, though it cost her a struggle each time she went to court. She always appeared in her widow's weeds; but the princess went in full court costume.

A.D. 1711. Shortly after her son's return, Mary Beatrice received a letter from her old friend, de Lauzun, informing her that peace between France and England would probably soon be established, and, if so, Louis XIV. could no longer acknowledge the title or cause of her son. This was sad news indeed, but the poor queen bore it calmly; and upon the heels of this report came assurance from Marlborough that the recall of the prince seemed certain to take place soon. Thus between hope and despair Mary Beatrice was kept in a constant state of excitement.

When we recall the vicissitudes of the queen-mother's life, our admiration of her courage and resignation is changed to surprise that her strength did not succumb, when in her advanced years she was called upon to bear a cruel blow, caused by the death of the darling and pride of her heart, the Princess Louisa.

A.D. 1712. This beautiful, affectionate, devoted daughter died of small-pox in April, and her brother was ill of the same disease when she was taken. The English at St. Germain were not more disconsolate than were the French at Versailles on account of the death of this young girl, whose charming qualities had rendered her a general favorite. But what must have been the agony of the poor [323]mother, who, after being deprived of the chief solace of her old age, saw her son recover only to be separated from her by the stern decree of circumstances? The negotiations of peace between France and England required the prince to withdraw entirely from the French dominions, and this had only been delayed on account of his illness.

Well, the time came at last when the Chevalier de St. George was compelled to leave St. Germain, and his poor mother was so unhappy at parting with him that she went to Chaillot, where, in company of the nuns, she hoped to find comfort and resignation. She arrived at the convent at seven o'clock in the evening, and burst into tears as she passed through the gate, saying: "This is the first time that I feel no joy in coming to this holy spot; but, my God, I ask not consolation, but the accomplishment of thy divine will!"

She sat down to supper, but ate nothing; and when she retired to her chamber, attended by the three nuns who waited on her, she exclaimed: "At last I may give liberty to my heart and weep for my poor girl." The nuns could not speak, their tears flowed in sympathy with their royal visitor, who said several times between her sobs, "My God, thy will be done," and then added: "Thou hast not waited for my death to despoil me: thou hast done it during my life; but thy will be done."

The next day Mary Beatrice was so ill that her physicians had to be summoned; and as she continued to grow worse, it was feared that she would die at the convent; however, after a few days she recovered.

On the very day that the truce with England was proclaimed in Paris the Chevalier de St. George went over from Livry to bid farewell to his mother. He met her at the church door as she came out; and as he had just been bled in the foot,—a form of medical treatment very popular [324]in those days,—he was lame and leaned on his cane for support. Mary Beatrice was suffering from an attack of gout, which obliged her also to make use of a cane; and the mother and son laughed heartily at the coincidence. The abbess said to the chevalier, "Sire, we hope your majesty will do us the honor to dine with us, as your royal uncle, King Charles, breakfasted when setting out for England."

"That journey will not be yet for me," he replied, drily.

September 7 was fixed for the chevalier's departure from Paris, and he went again to the convent on the previous day to bid a long farewell to his mother, whom he commended to the care of the nuns and her confessor, Father Ruga. Three days later he arrived at the French border, where he was to stop until his future residence should be decided upon.

Mary Beatrice remained at the convent, where she was visited from time to time by the most distinguished people of France; and the king sent her presents of game, fruit, and flowers.

A.D 1713. A letter from the chevalier, written at the beginning of the following year, informed his mother that he had been most affectionately received at Bar-le-duc by the Duke and Duchess of Lorraine. The latter was a relation, being descended from James I., so it was very pleasing to the queen to hear that any one in whose veins ran Stuart blood should be kind to her son.

It was a sad day for the exiled queen when the peace of Utrecht was signed, for one of the articles stated: "That, to insure forever the peace and repose of Europe and of England, the King of France recognized for himself and his successors the Protestant line of Hanover, and agreed that he who had taken the title of King of Great Britain should remain no longer in France."

Mary Beatrice knew that it grieved King Louis to banish [325]her son, but he was forced by the turn political affairs had taken to do it.

The Jacobites, as the opponents of William and Mary were called in England, never gave up the hope of seeing "the king over the water"—a name they had given to the Chevalier de St. George—restored to the throne, and many of them went to France from time to time on purpose to pay their respects to the queen-mother.

At the close of the year a report reached Mary Beatrice that her son was about to renounce the Catholic faith and become a member of the Church of England; but a letter from him reassured her on that score, for he wrote: "I doubt not that the reports which are in circulation of my having changed my religion have reached you, but you know me too well to be alarmed; and I can assure you that, with the grace of God, you will sooner see me dead than out of the church."

There was a great deal of distress at St. Germain on account of poverty; and as it was the loyal and faithful followers of Mary Beatrice who actually suffered the pangs of hunger at times, she was sorely afflicted on their account.

A.D. 1714. At last a small part of the money due her in England was ordered to be paid by Queen Anne, which relieved the wants of many for the time; but it was all Mary Beatrice ever received from that quarter, and by no means freed her from debt.

Shortly after this beneficent act Queen Anne died, and the moment the Chevalier de St. George heard it he travelled post-haste, incognito, to Paris to consult with his mother and other friends, having made up his mind to proceed at once to England to assert his claim to the throne. The Duke de Lauzun had hired a small house at Chaillot in his own name for the reception of the royal adventurer, [326]and thither Mary Beatrice went to meet him. He did not dare to venture near St. Germain, because he was too well known there, and preferred to keep his presence in France secret until he could ascertain what Louis XIV. would decide to do. That monarch had already paid dearly for the sympathy he had shown the royal widow and her son; besides, France was in no condition to maintain another war, so his majesty sent his minister, De Torcy, to persuade the Chevalier de St. George to return at once to Lorraine, and ordered at the same time that in case of refusal the young claimant of the British crown was to be compelled to leave France immediately.

Utterly destitute of money, ships, or men, the prince was powerless to take any stand, and meanwhile George I. was proclaimed King of England.

Louis XIV. had yielded to the urgent entreaties of Mary Beatrice in behalf of her son in so far as to command arms to be furnished for ten thousand men, and ships to transport them to Scotland, but before these arrangements were completed his majesty died.

A.D. 1715. Then a formidable insurrection broke out in Scotland, and King James III., as well as Mary, the queen-mother, were prayed for in the churches. When Mary Beatrice heard this she was in an agony of suspense, because she had had no news of her son for nearly three weeks. She knew that he had left Lorraine, and vague reports had reached her of his being in different parts of France in disguise, when suddenly one day he appeared before her at Chaillot in the habit of a monk. The chevalier spent only twenty-four hours with his mother, and then bade her farewell to set out on a journey fraught with danger. Spies were everywhere, and the identity of the strange monk was soon made known to his enemies. He started from Chaillot in one of the post carriages belonging to the Baron de [327]Breteul, a warm partisan of the Stuarts. The chevalier was still disguised as a monk, and travelled attended by some horsemen who wore the livery of his friend, the baron. At the village of Nonancourt a shabbily dressed old woman stopped the carriage, and going close up to the door said to the disguised occupant: "If you are the King of England go not to the post-house or you are lost, for several villains are waiting there to murder you."

Knowing that a bribe of a hundred thousand pounds had been set on his head by the British government, the chevalier dared not disregard such a piece of intelligence, but he questioned the woman further. She told him that her name was L'Hopital, and added: "I am a lone woman, mistress of the post-house of Nonancourt; I warn you not to approach, because I overheard three Englishmen discussing with some desperate characters of this neighborhood a design to kill a traveller who was to change horses with me to-night on his way to Château Thierry. I drugged their wine, and now they are so intoxicated that I locked them in the house, and came to conduct you to the cottage of our curate, where you will be safe."

The chevalier was struck by the woman's earnestness and simplicity, and resigned himself to her guidance. Having conducted him and his attendants to the house of the village pastor, L'Hopital summoned the magistrate, who, after hearing her story, arrested the three men and shut them up in prison. Two of them proved to be Englishmen and the third a well known French spy.

The next morning the worthy post-mistress sent the chevalier forward in another disguise, with fresh horses that soon carried him to Nantes, where a vessel awaited him, in which he descended the Loire to St. Malo. Finding an English squadron on the watch for him, the royal adventurer, attended by six gentlemen, all dressed as French [328]naval officers, rode on horseback to Dunkirk, where they embarked on a small vessel and arrived at Perth, in Scotland, on the seventh of December.

Meanwhile Mary Beatrice had a severe attack of illness, occasioned by anxiety on her son's account, for she never heard of his arrival on British soil until he had been gone nearly two months.

Without entering into all the painful details of this expedition, it is only necessary for us to say that, although the Scotch rejoiced at the idea of having "the auld Stuarts back again," it resulted, as usual, in defeat.

A.D. 1716. The Chevalier de St. George returned to France in disguise as before, and spent several days with his mother, although his presence on French soil was interdicted, as we know. To have her son under the same roof with her once more was a satisfaction for which Mary Beatrice had scarcely dared to hope; but her pleasure was short-lived, for the very morning after she had embraced him Lord Bolingbroke, his private secretary, waited on the chevalier to advise his immediate return to Bar. Etiquette required him to ask permission of the Duke of Lorraine, and as it would require several days to receive an answer from that kinsman, the chevalier repaired to Châlons rather than risk a longer stay on forbidden ground. His unsuccessful enterprise in Scotland had rendered his position much worse than it had been before with regard to the European powers, for they dared not offer him an asylum. Even his former friend, the Duke of Lorraine, refused to receive him, and he was advised to go to Sweden, but the spot he fixed upon was the beautiful town of Avignon.

Although the Regent Orleans would neither grant assistance to the Chevalier de St. George nor permit him to remain in France, he treated the widowed queen with every mark of veneration. The British ambassador had remonstrated [329]against her being allowed to remain at St. Germain, but she was too much loved and pitied by all classes of people for the regent to consent to her removal, even had he desired it. Therefore, to her dying day Mary Beatrice maintained the state and title of queen dowager of England, and lived undisturbed at the royal château that King Louis XIV. had placed at her disposal when, as a fugitive, she had sought his protection many years ago.

A.D. 1718. But the weary pilgrimage of poor Mary Beatrice was drawing to a close. Her last illness attacked her in April, and by the beginning of the following month she knew that her end was near. She desired to receive the last sacraments of the church, and afterwards took leave of all her faithful friends and attendants, thanking them for their services, and desiring all present "to pray for her and for the king, her son, that he might serve God faithfully all his life." This she repeated in a louder tone, fearing that every one in the room, which was full of people, might not have heard.

The dying queen asked to see Marshal Villeroi, the governor of the young King of France, and when he appeared at her bedside sent an earnest appeal to the Regent Orleans and Louis XV., in behalf of her son, whom she was to see no more. She also recommended her dependants to their care, and begged that the regent would not let them perish for want in a foreign land when she was gone.

The next day the good queen expired, in the sixtieth year of her age and the thirtieth of her exile. She had borne her sorrows and misfortunes with true heroism to the last, and her death was worthy of her life.

When the mother of the Regent Orleans announced to her German relatives that Mary Beatrice was dead, she added: "She never in her life did wrong to any one; if [330]you were about to tell her a story about a person, she always said: 'If it be any ill, I beg you not to relate it to me; I do not like histories which attack the reputation.'" It would be well for us who live in a more civilized age to lay this lesson to heart, and emulate the pious example of Mary Beatrice.





(A.D. 1662-1695.)

Lady Mary of York, as this queen was styled in her youth, was a person of small importance, so far as any prospect of her ever occupying the throne was concerned, for this reason: She was the daughter of James, Duke of York, second son of Charles I. and Henrietta Maria, whose history we have related.

Charles II. succeeded his father and married Catharine of Braganza, just at the time when Lady Mary was born, and everybody supposed that his children would be next in the line of succession. So they would have been if he had ever been blessed with any, but as he was not, his brother James, the luckless king of whom the last reign contains an account, mounted the throne, and then his daughters attained an importance that would not otherwise have been theirs.

The Duke of York's first wife was Anne Hyde, daughter of Clarendon, the lord chancellor, and as she was not of royal birth, a great deal of discontent was occasioned on all sides. However, the marriage had been secretly solemnized before any engagement was suspected, so it would have been useless for any one to say much against it.

Lady Mary was born at St. James's Palace, only a couple of weeks before her uncle's marriage; so the public mind was occupied with preparations for the reception of the new bride; and the infant came into the world as quietly. [334]as though she had not been of royal blood. She was sent to her grandfather's house at Twickenham, where her nursery was established; and being a very beautiful, engaging child, she was no doubt indulged and fondled more than was good for her. She had a little brother born when she was not more than a year and a half old; but he died within a short time. Lady Anne of York, the subject of the next reign, was born when Mary was three years of age, and the elder sister stood sponsor at the baptism of the infant.

The Duke of York was so fond of Lady Mary that he kept her in his arms all the time when he was at Twickenham, or when she was taken on a visit at St. James's Palace. Pepys, a literary gentleman, who published a most interesting diary of his times! says: "I was on business with the Duke of York, and with great pleasure saw him play with his little girl just like an ordinary private father." So we can easily imagine the romping and merry sounds that must have enlivened the nursery when the duke made his visits.

Shortly after the birth of Anne, the royal father returned from his first grand naval victory, and found the Great Plague raging to such an extent that he at once removed his wife and children to York. That place had the double advantage of pure air, and of being in the neighborhood of the duke's fleet, that was cruising off the northeast coast to keep an eye on the Dutch ships.

The Duchess of York had everything about her very splendid in her northern home, and was so happy there that when her husband was summoned elsewhere she preferred not to accompany him. No doubt this lady had faults,—who has not?—but her most prominent one was an excessive love of eating. This would have harmed no one but herself; therefore we should not have recorded it, [335]if it had not been transmitted to her children. Both of the daughters carried this weakness even further than their mother did, and she was injudicious enough to indulge them. As a natural consequence the children accumulated an unhealthy quantity of fat, and, of course, became victims of indigestion. Anne was a regular rolly-poly as a child; but as there is a separate chapter devoted to her we must confine the present story, as much as possible, to the elder sister.

Ladies Mary and Anne pursued their education under the direction of Lady Frances Villiers, daughter of the Earl of Suffolk and wife of Sir Edward Villiers. This-lady had six daughters of her own, and must have had her hands full with the care of eight girls. She lived with them at the old palace at Richmond, where Queen Elizabeth died, and her daughters grew up with the princesses, and formed a connection that lasted through life. Being deprived of their mother when they were, respectively, six and nine years of age, Mary and Anne naturally clung to the companions who shared their education and to the lady who superintended it.

A.D. 1671. When the Duchess of York died she left four children, two of whom were sons; but they followed her to the grave within the year. By that time the succession of the Princess Mary to the throne of England began to assume an air of probability, because, as we have said, no children were born to Charles II. The duchess had become a convert to Catholicism, and not very long after her death the duke was suspected of having likewise joined that faith. This made him so unpopular that the services he had performed for his country were all forgotten, and his marriage, rather more than two years afterwards, with the Catholic Princess of Modena, only served to increase the censure he had drawn down on his own head. [336]Fearing that his nieces might be influenced by their father's faith, King Charles undertook the supervision of their education himself, and engaged Henry Compton, Bishop of London, for their preceptor. This man had been a soldier until he was thirty years old, when he became a clergyman, and was rapidly promoted on account of the loyalty of his family. Compton was good enough as a man, but by no means a well-informed one, consequently the princesses were not taught as they ought to have been. People who have not had advantages of education themselves often know its importance; but this does not seem to have been the case with Compton, for his pupils were allowed to study or not, just as their fancy dictated. The consequence was that the elder sister, having inherited the literary tastes of her parents, studied because it pleased her to do so; while Lady Anne grew up an ignoramus because she did not so please. If the governess, Lady Frances Villiers, had done her duty faithfully, this would not have been the case; but her tastes lay in a different direction.

Peter de Laine was the French professor of the princesses, and made Lady Mary so perfect a mistress of that language that she wrote it better than her native tongue. Mr. and Mrs. Gibson gave instruction in drawing. They were a pair of dwarfs, neither being more than three feet six inches in height, and were considered among the best English artists of the day. This little couple had nine full-grown children, and lived to a good old age.

The ladies Mary and Anne continued to live at Richmond with Lady Villiers and her daughters after their mother's death, and were very religiously trained according to the requirements of the Church of England. One day in the year the Duke of York's entire family always observed as one of deep sorrow, fasting, and prayer; it was [337]the thirtieth of January, memorable as having been the date of Charles I.'s execution. Each year all matters of business or pleasure were laid aside on that day, and the family appeared in deep mourning garments.

A.D. 1674. Mrs. Betterton, the principal actress at the King's Theatre, was engaged to teach the royal sisters a ballet, which they performed at court, and the lessons she also imparted in elocution proved of great service when, as queens, they had speeches to make. Both the princesses were attractive in personal appearance, though they did not resemble each other; for Lady Mary was a Stuart in looks, tall, graceful, slender, with a clear complexion, dark eyes and hair, while Anne had her mother's round face and plump figure. Her hair was dark brown, complexion ruddy, features clear cut and regular, and she had beautiful hands and arms. Being somewhat near-sighted, Princess Anne had a drawn look about the eyes that detracted from her beauty. Perhaps it was this defect that prevented her studying as much as she ought to have done; but certain it is that she never opened a book when she could avoid it; but she was a good musician and played well on the guitar. At a very early age Anne excelled in card-playing, and, I regret to add, gossip. But this was the fault of King Charles's court, at which both the princesses were introduced when they ought to have been still at school. Lady Mary played cards as well as her sister, and for very high stakes, but, what was worse, she employed Sunday evenings as well as those of the week in this frivolous manner. Nobody tried to correct this bad habit, because gambling was the chief pastime at the English court, and had been so since the time of Henry VIII.

A.D. 1677. When Lady Mary was fifteen years old King Charles and his councillors began to look about for a husband for her, and decided that her cousin, William [338]Henry, Prince of Orange, would be the best person for her to marry. Then that young man was first consulted on the subject; his mind was so filled with war and exploits on the battle-field that he appeared indifferent almost to rudeness; but later, when he thought that the influence of his uncles, Charles II. and the Duke of York, might be of advantage in a political point of view, he went to England to see what his chances then might be with the presumptive heiress, Mary. This prince was the son of King Charles's sister Mary, who died when her boy was nine years of age, and left him to the care of his grandmother, his father having been killed at sea before he was born. He was an undersized, delicate boy of nineteen the first time he went to England to claim the protection of his uncles, who made some plans by which he was secured the Stadt-holdership of Holland. That was in 1670; he was twenty-six when he returned on his matrimonial expedition, and not much improved either in health or appearance. Prince William had a little plan of his own which prevented his discussing his affairs in a straightforward manner at his first interview with King Charles. He was at war with France, and felt no desire to make peace unless forced to do so. Should he wed the Princess of England, he counted on assistance from her father to pursue hostilities, but he would not commit himself until he had seen the lady; for although he was by no means good-looking himself, he was determined to have a handsome wife.

He was so well pleased with the Princess Mary that after his introduction to her by King Charles, he immediately asked her hand in marriage. It was granted on condition that the terms of a peace with France should first be agreed upon. The prince excused himself, and declared "that he must end his marriage before he began his peace treaty;" then added "that his allies would be apt to believe [339]that he had made his match at their cost, and for his part, he would never sell his honor for a wife."

But the king remained obstinate for three or four days; then Sir William Temple sought his presence and repeated this message sent to his majesty by the Prince of Orange, who was in a very bad humor. It was: "That he repented ever coming to England, and that after two days he would go back home if the king continued in the mind he was of treating of the peace before his marriage, and that the king must choose whether they were to live afterwards as the greatest friends or the greatest enemies, for it must be one or the other."

The easy-going Charles, who was always for letting everybody have his own way, replied: "Well, I never yet was deceived in judging of a man's honesty by his looks; and if I am not deceived in the prince's face, he is the honestest man in the world. I will trust him—he shall have his wife. You go, Sir William Temple, and tell my brother that I have resolved it shall be so."

The Duke of York was surprised at the suddenness of the message, but replied: "The king shall be obeyed, and I would be glad if all his subjects would learn of me to obey him. I tell him my opinion very freely upon all things; but when I know his positive pleasure on a point I obey."

The Prince of Orange was delighted at his uncle Charles's decision, and that very evening the match was announced at the cabinet council. After having dined at Whitehall Palace, the Duke of York returned to St. James's, where he was then living with his family, and leading his daughter Mary into a private room, told her how it was arranged that she was to marry Prince William of Orange. The poor girl burst into tears and felt very unhappy, but no one cared anything about that; and although her heart was very heavy [340]she had to stand by her betrothed for several succeeding days to receive deputations from the city officials, law students, commercial companies, and others who came to offer congratulations. A grand banquet was given by the citizens of London to evince their pleasure at this Protestant marriage, and on the same day the Princess Mary, with her sister Anne, and her stepmother, Mary of Modena, sat under a canopy of state and witnessed a fine procession.

The marriage was solemnized on the fourth of November in the bride's bed-chamber at St. James's Palace, only the members of the royal family being present. King Charles tried to draw attention from his niece's excessive sadness by rollicking gayety, quite out of place on so solemn an occasion; and when the Prince of Orange endowed his bride with all his earthly goods, placing a handful of gold and silver coins on the open book, the king told his niece "to gather it up and put it in her pocket, for't was all clear gain." After the ceremony the court and foreign ambassadors were admitted to offer congratulations. Next morning Prince William gave his bride a present of jewels to the amount of forty thousand pounds.

This marriage was very popular in Scotland, where, as well as in England, all the festivities and rejoicings customary on such occasions were observed. The groom displayed great ill-humor when the duchess had a son born a couple of days later, because the little fellow would have had the precedency over his wife in the succession, but, as we know, he lived only a few weeks. It made Princess Mary no happier to find herself united to a surly man, and what added to her distress at this time was the illness of her sister Anne, who was suffering from small-pox, and could neither be present at her wedding nor take leave of her when, a week later, she departed for Holland. The



[343]prince wanted to get his wife away from St. James's as soon as possible lest she might catch the infection; but she would not leave her father until the dreaded moment of sailing arrived. This made the groom so angry that everybody spoke of how cross and ugly he was, and the maids-of-honor of the queen called him the "Dutch monster," and other horrid names. He was angry with the wind, too, because it would continue to blow in the wrong direction, and keep him in England longer than he desired. Several people were lying dangerously ill at St. James's Palace; two or three had died since the wedding; Anne continued too ill to see her sister, and all was gloom and sorrow around the bride. At last, on the nineteenth of November, the wind changed, and the two palaces of Whitehall and St. James were at once bustle and confusion with preparations for the departure of the Princess of Orange and her husband. At nine o'clock in the morning the bride bade farewell to her old home and went to Whitehall to embrace her royal aunt, Queen Catharine, whom she loved very dearly. It was then that the queen told her to consider how much better her case was than her own, for when she came from Portugal she had not even seen King Charles, and Mary replied between her sobs: "But, madame, remember you came into England, I am going out of England." The king and the Duke of York, with a large party of nobility and gentry, embarked-on the royal barges at Whitehall and accompanied the Prince and Princess of Orange down the river to Erith, where they were to dine. Then Mary parted with her father and uncle and set sail for Holland, several English and Dutch men-of-war being in attendance to conduct the royal yacht across the sea. If the Duke of York had known his son-in-law as well at that time as he did later, he would have set a watch on his movements until he was well out of the kingdom; but an [344]unfavorable shifting of the wind gave the ambitious prince a chance of playing a mean trick on the duke, who on hearing that the Dutch fleet was detained at Sheerness, sent a messenger to invite the bride and groom to pass the time at Whitehall. William declined, but went ashore with his wife and became the guest of Colonel Dorrell, the governor. Next day they proceeded to Canterbury, accompanied by Lady Inchiquin (one of the Villiers girls), a maid, and the prince's two favorites, Bentinck and Odyke. Arriving at the inn, the prince applied to the city authorities for a loan, saying that he had been sent away from London in haste without a penny, because King Charles and the Duke of York were so jealous of any favor shown him that they were afraid the lord mayor would give him a grand feast, and hurried him off to prevent it. As we know the entertainment was given, and the prince and princess, as well as the rest of the royal family were present, of course the statement was false, and by refusing the loan the corporation of Canterbury showed very plainly that they considered it so. But Doctor Tillotson, the Dean of Canterbury, gathered together all the plate and ready money he could command, and hastened with them to the inn, where he requested an interview with Mr. Bentinck, and not only placed all his wealth at the disposal of the prince, but offered him an asylum at the deanery, a more proper stopping-place for one of his rank than a common inn. The money and plate were accepted, but the offer of hospitality was declined. Now, it was perfectly useless for Prince William to demand money from any one but his uncles, who would have supplied him without hesitation. Besides, as the first instalment of Princess Mary's portion of forty thousand pounds had been paid, his credit was perfectly good in London, and the prime minister, Danby, would not have been applied to in vain. But the prince was so [345]angry on account of the birth of his little brother-in-law that he wanted to appear in the light of a very ill-used person, and this game was a bold political stroke to obtain partisans before leaving the country. And he succeeded, for Dr. Tillotson became a serviceable friend, who corresponded with the prince and Mr. Bentinck, and gave them some valuable information for which he was made an archbishop a few years later. Four days the Prince of Orange devoted to courting favor with the people of Kent, and then set sail on board the "Montague" at Margate.

The princess was accompanied by Lady Inchiquin and her two sisters, Elizabeth and Anne Villiers, whose mother had died just after they bade her adieu at Richmond Palace. These were ladies-of-honor, and there was still another, named Mary Worth. After a very stormy passage, during which everybody was sea-sick excepting Princess Mary, the royal fleet arrived at Tethudo, a town on the Holland coast, and their majesties proceeded to Hounslardyke Palace. The preparations for their reception went forward so slowly that they could not make their public entry into the Hague until the end of a fortnight, but everything was arranged with great magnificence. The bridge at the entrance of the town was festooned with garlands of flowers, surrounding appropriate Latin inscriptions, and twelve companies of soldiers were drawn up in line on either side. Twenty-four virgins, in gay costumes, walked two and two on either side of their highnesses' coach, strewing fresh flowers and evergreens in the path all the way. In front of the town hall was a triumphal arch hung with banners, ferns, and gay ribbons, displaying the crests of the prince and princess side by side, and over them two hands holding a Latin motto, which, rendered into English, read thus:—

"What Halcyon airs this royal Hymen sings,

The Olive branch of peace her dower she brings."

[346]The royal cortège passed beneath this arch on to Hoog-straet, where another bore this inscription:—

"To the Batavian court, with Heaven's best smile,

Approach fair guest, and bless this happy pile."

And so with a fine display of loyalty from their subjects, that greeted their eyes and ears at every turn,—for there was music, the beating of drums, and ringing of bells besides,—the royal pair passed through the principal streets to their palace.

That evening there were brilliant fireworks representing, in turn, St. George on horseback, fountains, pyramids, enormous castles, chariots containing the gods descending from the skies in a blaze of fire, flower-pots, animals, and a variety of novel devices. The following day all the "Herrs" of note called to pay their respects, but it is not necessary for us to recall the long unpronounceable names. The usual celebrations followed, and after that Princess Mary resorted to her old propensity for gambling, in which she was encouraged by her husband, who carried this vice further than she did.

Not long after the arrival of the Princess of Orange, as we must call her now, the Archbishop of Canterbury recommended Dr. Hooper for her almoner and chaplain. On his arrival in Holland he found the princess without a chapel or a room of any kind that could be put to that use, except the dining-room. This she willingly relinquished, because she and the prince never took their meals together, and for the sake of obliging Dr. Hooper she was willing to dine in a small, dark parlor, which, though not very comfortable, answered the purpose. Dr. Hooper was ordered to fit up the chapel; but so alarmed was the princess lest she might suffer from having incurred her lord's displeasure, that she insisted upon the almoner's being present on a certain afternoon, when his majesty was



[349]to inspect the arrangements, to bear part of the brunt of his ill-nature. The first thing he did on entering the chapel was to turn up his nose contemptuously, kick over the chair placed on the steps of the dias tor his wife, and ask roughly for whom it was intended. Then he inquired the use of each article that struck his notice, and with an emphatic "Hum!" left the chapel, which he entered only once or twice after that. The princess attended every day, taking great pains not to make the chaplain wait. The prince had given his wife certain religious books to read, which Dr. Hooper replaced with those he preferred for her. This excited the prince's displeasure, and one day on finding her deeply interested in a work not in accordance with his belief, he stormed furiously, and said: "What!—will you read such books? I suppose it is Dr. Hooper persuades you to do it."

While the Princess of Orange was under the good influence of Dr. Hooper, her sister Anne had established her little court at St. James's, and passed most of her time gambling and gossiping. Her most intimate friend was Sarah Jennings, who, at the age of fifteen, had secretly married the handsome Colonel Churchill, the Duke of York's favorite gentleman. This lady afterwards became the Duchess of Marlborough, a very important personage in the political world. Her tastes were similar to those of the Princess Anne, over whom she had a very baneful influence. Barbara Villiers, now Mrs. Berkley, third daughter of her late governess, was Anne's first lady-inwaiting; thus we see four of the ladies of this family in direct attendance upon the two princesses who later occupied the British throne.

But to return to Holland. At the Hague the Princess of Orange found three beautiful palaces. One was called "the Hague," a splendid Gothic structure, where all the [350]business of state was transacted. Mary never went there, excepting, on occasions of great ceremony. About a mile from this castle stood the palace in the wood, surrounded by stately oaks and one of the most beautiful gardens in the whole of Europe. That was the home of the Princess of Orange. A long avenue formed by two rows of wide-spreading trees, whose branches met and formed a canopy overhead, led to the main door of the palace, and clean, freshly gravelled walks wound in and out to the utmost limit of the well-kept grounds. Not far off was a dower palace, called the Old Court. A paved walk, also bordered with fine old trees, trimmed in the shape of pyramids, led from the Hague to the seaport of Scheveling; and, as this was open to the public, every passenger had to pay a small toll to keep it in good order.

But the English attendants who had accompanied the princess wanted something besides a beautiful residence; they were not pleased with their new home, and longed for England and the old scenes and old faces they had left behind them. The princess was fortunate in having her uncle, Lord Clarendon, with her. He was ambassador at the Hague when she first arrived; and, as her husband was called away shortly after, it was most agreeable to have her uncle's protection.

A.D. 1678. The Prince of Orange returned from hunting one day, and after reading a few letters announced his intention to proceed at once to France. The princess accompanied her husband as far as Rotterdam, and then bade him farewell.

During his absence the princess made a tour of her dominions, moving from place to place in her barge by canal. While travelling in this primitive manner, the ladies of the court amused themselves with needlework or card-playing; and when Princess Mary sewed, Dr. Hooper would read



[353]from some serious work. Although not seventeen years of age at that time, the princess managed her ladies remarkably well. She never showed more favor to one than another; insisted on the observance of every point of etiquette, and exercised so much authority that a look from her was sufficient to put a stop to any conversation that did not meet with her approval. Some years later Dr. Hooper paid her the compliment of saying, "that during the entire time of his sojourn in her household,—over a year and a half,—he never heard her say or saw her do one thing that he could have wished she had not said or done."

The climate of Holland did not agree with the princess, and she had a dangerous attack of malarial fever the following summer, from which she did not entirely recover for many weeks. With the hope of cheering her and accelerating her convalescence, the Duke of York sent his wife and his daughter Anne to visit her. Princess Mary was beside herself with joy, for she had not seen her sister since her marriage, and she had always been the best of friends with her stepmother. The Duchess of York called her "the Lemon," and her husband "the Orange": and most of her letters to Mary before the revolution began "My dear Lemon."

A.D. 1679. The following year the Duke of York was banished from England on account of his religion, and went to visit his daughter in Holland, who treated him with the most tender affection. Her health was not then entirely restored, for she still suffered from attacks of ague, and was ordered to try the climate of Dieren, where her husband owned a hunting palace. The change did her a great deal of good, and she returned to the Palace of the Wood in time to see Dr. Hooper go back to England to marry a lady to whom he had been engaged for many months. [354]Mary was very much alarmed lest she should lose the services of her almoner, and begged him to prevail upon his lady to come to Holland. He promised to do his best and succeeded; but it was very mortifying to the princess that she was unable to extend her hospitality to Mrs. Hooper. The doctor had always taken his meals with the ladies of the bed-chamber and the maids-of-honor of the princess, and his wife was invited to do the same.

But knowing, as everybody did, that Prince William was too stingy to be willing to feed one person more than he was actually obliged to, Dr. Hooper never allowed his wife to eat at the palace, but took his meals with her at their lodging-house, not far away. Fortunately he was a man of means, for as he received only a few pounds from Prince William for all his services at the Dutch court he could not otherwise have subsisted.

The Princess Mary had another visit from her sister Anne, when she was permitted by King Charles to join her father during his banishment; and the whole family of the Duke of York spent some time together in Holland on the most amicable terms. At that period Mary did not know how her husband was intriguing with such men as Sunderland, Oates, and Bedloe, who were mixed up in the popish plot, for the purpose of depriving her father of his succession, and bringing on her native land the curse of civil war. She would have been horrified at such an idea.

Princess Mary was not happily married, for her husband was so cross and disagreeable that it was impossible for her to love him. Her life was almost one of imprisonment, because, although she was condescension itself to the wives of the burgomasters and other ladies, she never lost sight of her own high birth sufficiently to permit of any intimacy or exchange of visits; consequently she was confined to the narrow circle of her own court, which was very tiresome [355]to a woman accustomed to all the pomp, grandeur, and gayety of royal life in England.

One thing that interested her was the building of a palace by her husband at Loo. She laid the corner-stone with all the ceremony that usually attends such a performance, and planned the decorations of the building as well as the laying out of the gardens and walks. After the palace was completed, Princess Mary occupied apartments that were called "the queen's suite" forever after, though when she became Queen of England she ceased to live in Holland, and never even visited there. Under the windows of this suite was "the queen's garden," in the centre of which was a splendid large fountain. This garden opened through a hedge into another adorned with a number of fine statues. Then the princess had a poultry-yard, where she raised a fine breed of fowls that she was fond of tending, feeding, and watching,—an amusement that served to pass away many a tedious hour.

A.D. 1680. Beyond the park was an immense aqueduct that supplied all the fountains and the fish-pond, as well as the means for irrigating; then there were further on long shady walks that terminated in a grove, where Mary often went to enjoy an hour's solitude, or perhaps to weep over her forlorn situation. She read, embroidered, and continued her drawing-lessons with Gibson, the dwarf master, who had followed her to Holland but had scarcely any society besides her maids-of-honor and her good nurse, Mrs. Langford, whose husband was one of her chaplains. All her English attendants were heartily detested by the prince, who managed to get rid of as many of them as possible and replace them with his Dutch subjects, who were, in most instances, by no means agreeable to Mary.

A.D. 1684. Year by year William of Orange imposed so many acts of cruelty on his wife that at last she was [356]almost afraid to express her opinion on any subject, and by the grossest misrepresentations he turned her heart from her own family, and in every possible way encouraged an intimacy between her and the Duke of Monmouth while he was an exile from England. This was before the Duke of York had ascended the throne. Charles II. had banished Monmouth from his realm; and William's object in being so friendly with him was, that in this enemy of the Duke of York he knew he should find a powerful ally who would further any plan of his, no matter how unscrupulous, by which he meant to prevent James from assuming the crown and usurp his place. The banished duke must have exerted a powerful influence over the mind of the princess in some mysterious way, otherwise it is hard to understand how she could consent to show marks of favor to a man who calumniated her own father. But she was sadly changed by this time, and all the affection she had once entertained for her parents had vanished. She went constantly to hear political sermons preached against her father, who was accused of dreadful crimes, that, whether true or false, should never have been pronounced within the hearing of his daughter. Her life that had been so monotonous became gay in the extreme after the appearance of Monmouth at the Hague; and she danced, flirted, and promenaded with him in a most undignified manner. Her father heard of this conduct, and remonstrated with the princess. She shed tears over his letter, but said, "that the prince was her master and would be obeyed." This was partly true, no doubt; but after being shut up as she had been for several years, she went to the other extreme, and enjoyed the gayety that her husband permitted her to indulge in while he was using her as a tool to further his intrigues with Monmouth. She is certainly to blame for her undignified behavior, but still more for the disrespect [357]she showed her father, who had always been most kind and indulgent to her. In one of his fault-finding letters he wrote his daughter to warn her husband against Monmouth, who, in the event of King Charles's death and his own, would, he assured her, give them a struggle before they could get possession of the throne of Great Britain. Thus we see that James knew Monmouth was not to be trusted, though suspicion with regard to his son-in-law had not yet entered his head.

It was not long after the marriage of Mary that King Charles began to think about a husband for his other niece, the Princess Anne. Several candidates for her hand were duly presented and considered, but at last the choice fell on Prince George of Denmark, brother to King Christian of that country. He was a valiant soldier, and had distinguished himself in several battles with the Swedes, during which he had rescued his brother, the king, from the enemy by his wonderful dash and presence of mind. He and the Princess Anne were married in 1683; and their nuptials, unlike those of Mary and the Prince of Orange, were conducted with great pomp, and succeeded by the usual celebrations. King Charles settled on the bride an income of twenty thousand pounds per annum, and presented her with a small palace adjoining Whitehall for her residence, for it was arranged that she was not to go to Denmark to live.

A.D. 1685. We have spoken of the gay doings at the Holland court, but they were not to continue long; for suddenly everything was changed to mourning on the announcement of the death of King Charles II. of England. Princess Mary was very much grieved on account of this sad event, for all her remembrances of her uncle were of the most agreeable nature. The Duke of Monmouth and Prince William were closeted together for several hours after the [358]news came, and that very night the duke started for England.


But so secretly were his preparations and departure made that he was supposed to be shut up in his own room until late on the following clay. It was the prince who furnished him with money for the rash invasion of England which resulted in his execution. The details of his bold exploit are given in the last reign.

After James was firmly seated on the throne, it would never do tor the Prince of Orange to appear in the light of [359]an enemy, so he had to change his tactics forthwith. He pretended that the affectionate letters to his wife from her father were addressed to himself, and read them aloud to the ambassadors. To the king he wrote in the most humble terms, promising fidelity till death, and explaining that Monmouth had received only common hospitality at his hands, and been sent away-from the Hague as soon as possible.

Certainly James II. regretted the necessity which compelled him to put Monmouth to death, but Princess Mary had formed such an attachment for him that she never forgave her father for causing that execution.

A.D. 1686. During the following spring a plot against the life of Prince William was revealed to the princess, and she became so alarmed that she obtained for him a bodyguard, which had not previously been considered at all necessary.

Then William Penn was sent by James II. to convince the prince that all laws tending to religious persecutions ought to be abolished; but his errand was a failure, because the prince declared "that he would lose all the revenues and prospects of the kingdom of Great Britain, to which his wife was heiress, before one should be abolished." And the princess indorsed this decision, adding: "That if ever she were Queen of England she should do more for the Protestants than even Queen Elizabeth had done."

Penn spoke so plainly to the princess, and expressed his opinion so freely, that she disliked him forever after.

A.D. 1688. The Prince and Princess of Orange had their spies in England, who kept them daily informed of every change in the political drama. Of these Lord and Lady Sunderland were the principal agents, and as this lord was prime minister he had special facilities for gaining knowledge. Another was the Princess Anne whose letters [360]were remarkable for coarseness, vulgarity, and bad spelling. As she did not know of the bond existing between Lady Sunderland and her sister Mary, she sometimes filled her letters with abuse of that person, on whom she did not hesitate to bestow some very hard epithets. Her remarks must often have amused both William and Mary, who were better aware of what was going on in Great Britain than she was, although they were not on the spot. One of Anne's letters closes with this sentence: "One thing I forgot to tell you about Lord Sunderland, which is that it is thought if everything does not go here as he would have it, that he will pick a quarrel with the court and so retire, and possibly make his court to you."

This shows that the princess little suspected Lord Sunderland of already being in the service of William. She had reasons of her own for trying to create ill-feeling between Mary and her father; and once when the princess had hinted at the possibility of her visiting England, Anne warned her in rather vague terms that her life might be in danger were she to present herself at her father's court.

If Mary had considered how kind and indulgent that father had always been to his children, she would have insisted on an explanation; but the correspondence between these two sisters was interrupted for awhile by Anne's illness. The king watched by her bedside until she was past danger, and nursed her with the most tender care. What would have been his feelings, could he have known the treachery of the invalid at whose side he sat hour after hour, anxiously awaiting the result of her disease?

Shortly after her recovery, Princess Anne asked permission of her father to spend a few weeks at the Hague. The Prince of Denmark, her husband, was going on a visit to his native land, and it was his wife's plan that she should be conducted by him to her sister's court, there to remain [361]until his return. Her confidential friend, Lady Churchill, was to accompany her. But King James had begun to see something of the part his children were playing against him, and peremptorily refused to allow Anne to leave England. In a fit of temper at being thus opposed she retired to Bath, where she remained until after the birth of her brother, whose appearance in the world was most unwelcome to both her and Mary of Orange.

Meanwhile affairs had taken such a turn that King James's downfall was rapidly approaching. His adherence to the Catholic cause deprived him of support from the Reformed church, and obliged some of the best and most loyal of his subjects to stand by and witness his ruin, though with intense pain, because they were unable to stir hand or foot in his behalf.

Lord Clarendon, who had by this time returned to London from the Hague, was one of these. It will be remembered that he was King James's brother-in law, and a warm friendship had always existed between the two men. It was most painful to him to observe the indifference of Anne towards her father, particularly when reports reached England that the Prince of Orange was coming over with an army to invade the country. Clarendon questioned the princess to find out how much she knew of the matter, but could get very little satisfaction, for she evaded him as much as possible, and pretended to have no information but that which her husband had received from the king himself. After several vain attempts to induce his niece to speak to her father and endeavor to console him,—for he had sunken into a most painful state of melancholy,—Lord Clarendon begged her at least to urge the king to consult with some of his old friends, each and all of whom were warmly attached to him. But this unnatural daughter put him off, and preferred to increase her father's anguish. [362]One day in October there was a royal levee at Whitehall. The king was in a painfully depressed state of mind, and told Lord Clarendon that the Prince of Orange had embarked with his Dutch troops, and only awaited a favorable wind to sail, adding, "I have nothing by this day's post from my daughter Mary; and it is the first time I have missed hearing from her for a long while."

The unfortunate father never heard from her again.

Lord Clarendon made another attempt to induce Anne to save her father, which she might have done if she had chosen; but she did not, and treated every proposition with disgusting levity.

Louis XIV. offered to intercept the Dutch fleet; but James declined his aid, because of the confidence he felt in his daughter Mary. Her last letter assured him that the prince's fleet was made ready to repel an attack of the French, which was hourly expected; and the fond, confiding father believed her.

It was Dr. Burnet, a well-known author and minister, who undertook to explain to the Princess of Orange all the details of the political situation; and after the prince decided to get possession of the throne of Great Britain, he asked her what would be her husband's position, she being the heir and not he.

She replied that she had not considered that point, but would be obliged to him if he would tell her. Burnet, who was evidently acting in the interest of the prince, replied, "That she must be contented as a wife to engage in her husband's interest and give him the real authority as soon as it came into her hands." Mary consented, and asked the doctor to bring the prince to her that she might assure him of her submission to his will. William was hunting that day; but on the morrow, after informing him of the conversation with the princess, Burnet conducted him to her presence. [363]Mary told him that she was surprised to hear from the doctor how, by the laws of England, a husband could be made subservient to his wife, providing the title of king came to him through her; and added a solemn promise that she should always be obedient to him, and that he should rule, not she. It seems surprising that so faithless a daughter should have been so dutiful a wife; but the prince had broken her spirit by his frequent acts of cruelty and neglect, and she was as submissive as a whipped cur.

Instead of thanking his wife, William treated her decision as a matter of course, and merely answered with a grunt of satisfaction, giving Dr. Burnet great credit for the persuasive eloquence that had brought about so favorable a result.

In October the Prince of Orange sailed with a fleet of fifty-two ships of war; and, after a very stormy voyage, landed at an English village on the anniversary of the Gunpowder Plot.

Meeting with no opposition, he marched four miles into Devonshire, followed by his entire force. The prince knew what a risk he was taking, and waited with breathless anxiety to see how many of the west of England people would flock to his standard.

He published a declaration that the Prince of Wales was not the real child of James II.; but that a strange baby had been adopted to impose on the British nation, who was to rule them as a Roman Catholic. This was done to prevent the country from educating the prince according to the doctrines of the Church of England, which would probably have established his succession. Of course a child upon whose birth any doubt was cast could never rule as a Catholic, nor be educated by the state for any purpose; therefore the daughters of James II. pretended to [364]believe the falsehood, knowing that in the event of the prince's accession they would stand no chance of ever wearing the crown.

News arrived in London that Lord Cornbury, eldest son of the Earl of Clarendon, had deserted the king's army with three regiments, and gone over to the enemy. Clarendon was overcome with grief and shame at such conduct on the part of one of his flesh and blood. When Princess Anne saw him she asked why he had not been to see her for several days. He replied, "that he was so much concerned for the villany his son had committed that he was ashamed of being seen anywhere."

"Oh," replied the princess, "people are so apprehensive of popery that you will find many more of the army will do the same."

And she was right; for desertions became of daily occurrence, and King James was surrounded by traitors on all sides. Anne knew of Lord Cornbury's intended desertion, and was anxiously awaiting news from her husband, who, with a display of affection and sincerity, had gone off with her father to assist in defending him against the Prince of Orange. Lord Churchill and Sir George Hewett were with the king also; and these two were concerned in a plot against the life of their sovereign, which the latter confessed on his deathbed some years later.

Every time the king heard that one of his officers had gone over to the enemy, Prince George of Denmark would raise his eyes and hands with affected surprise, and exclaim, "Is it possible!" At last, after supping with the king and speaking in terms of abhorrence of all deserters, the prince, Churchill, and Hewett, taking advantage of an attack of illness that had suddenly seized their sovereign, went off in the night to the hostile camp. When informed of it, James exclaimed: "How? Has 'Is It Possible' gone [365]off, too?" Yet this departure was a cruel blow to the father, who said: "After all, I only mind his conduct as connected with my child; otherwise the loss of a stout trooper would have been greater."

In expectation of her husband's desertion, Anne had made arrangements for her own flight; and no sooner did the news reach her that he had gone than she followed. It was Sunday night, and the princess retired to her room at the usual hour. Mrs. Danvers, the lady-in-waiting, was not in the secret, and went to bed as usual in the ante-chamber. Ladies Fitzharding and Churchill had entered Princess Anne's room early in the evening, and hidden themselves by agreement in her dressing-room. At midnight, accompanied by these two women, the princess stole out of the palace, and met Lord Dorset in St. James's Park. A coach stood in waiting a little distance off; but the rain poured in torrents, and the mud was so deep that Anne lost one of her shoes in a puddle, from which there was neither time nor inclination to extricate it. This little accident was treated as a joke by the adventurers, who laughed heartily, while Lord Dorset gallantly stuck the princess's foot into one of the kid gauntlets he had pulled off; and assisted her to hop forward to the carriage. The party drove to the Bishop of London's house, where they were refreshed and the princess supplied with shoes, and started by daybreak for Lord Dorset's castle in Waltham Forest.

After a few hours' rest they proceeded to Nottingham, where the Earl of Northampton, attired in military uniform, raised a purple standard in the name of the laws and liberties of England, and invited the people to gather around the Protestant heiress to the throne. Afterwards Anne went on to Warwick, where there was a project on foot for the extermination of all the papists in England. Although the princess knew that her father's head would be the first to [366]fall should such a plan be carried into effect, she was so unnatural as to favor it.

A tremendous uproar was raised when Anne's women-in-waiting entered her room the morning after her flight and found her bed undisturbed and the princess herself missing. Before many minutes the whole court was aroused with the lamentations of the people, who declared that the princess had been murdered by the queen's priests. The storm rose to such a height that a mob collected in the street and swore that the palace should be pulled down, and Mary Beatrice pulled to pieces if Anne were not forthcoming. No doubt the threat would have been put into execution had it not been for the discovery of a letter which the missing princess had left lying on her toilet-table, stating that she had gone off to avoid the king's displeasure on account of her husband's desertion; and that she should remain away until a reconciliation had been effected. "Never was any one," she wrote, "in such an unhappy condition, so divided between duty to a father and a husband; and therefore I know not what I must do but to follow one to preserve the other." This would be all very well if she had been dutiful to her father; but as she had only one week before informed Orange by letter that her husband would soon be with him, ready to serve his cause to the utmost, we can only feel intense disgust at such deception [367]


James II. arrived in London just after the excitement caused by Anne's escape had subsided. He had been obliged to leave his army on account of illness, and when he heard of his daughter's conduct, he struck his breast and exclaimed: "God help me! my own children have forsaken me in my distress." From that moment he lost heart and ceased to struggle to retain his crown; but he never censured Anne as he might have done, nor was he aware of the extent of her treachery.

Meanwhile, the Prince of Orange induced many of the most loyal subjects of the crown to join him by circulating the report that he had come to England for the sole purpose of establishing peace between James II. and his people. So he advanced as far as Henley, and while resting there heard, to his unspeakable joy, that the king had disbanded his army, and followed his wife, who, with the Prince of Wales, had escaped to France. They could not more completely have played into his hand.

Prince George of Denmark waited for his wife at Oxford, which place she entered with military state, escorted by several thousand mounted gentlemen, who, with their tenants, had joined her followers as she passed through the various counties. Bishop Compton, Anne's early tutor, rode before her in military dress, and carried a purple flag in token of his adherence to her cause. [368]James had been captured and taken back to Whitehall, so William of Orange stopped at Windsor and sent his Dutch guard forward to expel his uncle; for neither he nor his sister-in-law dared to face the father whom they had so basely injured. The next day the prince entered London quietly, went straight to St. James's Palace, and retired to his bedchamber. In the evening bells rang, guns fired, and there was general rejoicing among the Orange party. A few days later the Prince and Princess of Denmark returned, and took up their abode at the palace they had lived in ever since their marriage, called the Cockpit, because the site of it had once been used for that barbarous amusement.

A.D. 1689. Anne felt no regret at the fate that had overtaken her unfortunate father, but triumphantly appeared in public with Lady Churchill, both decked in orange ribbons, an emblem of the cause they had espoused. Her uncle, Lord Clarendon, took her severely to task for not showing some concern on account of her father's downfall, but she proved very plainly that she felt none; but it was not many weeks before she regretted having taken sides with William. This was not because of any qualms of conscience, or awakening of affection for her parent,—no, indeed! It was only that her interests were at stake, and her rights in danger of being forfeited. A convention had been called to arrange how the kingdom was to be governed, and as leader of a well-disciplined army of fourteen thousand foreign soldiers, quartered in and about London, the Prince of Orange was likely to have the matter settled just as he chose. The convention were perplexed, however; for though they decided to exclude the Prince of Wales and settle the succession on Mary of Orange, they were by no means willing, in the event of her death, to have the kingdom governed by a foreigner, particularly as his religion



[371]was as far removed from that of the Church of England as James's was.

While they were considering this matter William was so taciturn and glum that the English lords could not find out what he wanted, so they applied to some of his Dutch attendants to know what ailed their master, and were informed that if Princess Mary was to occupy the throne and take precedence of her husband he would go back to Holland; for he was not willing to be tied by apron strings, or to play the part of gentleman-usher to his own wife. The English nobles were more perplexed than ever; but at this juncture Dr. Burnet came to their relief, and said, that as Mary's spiritual adviser he was well aware of how she would decide if the matter were left to her, because she had told him that she preferred yielding precedence to her husband in every affair of life. Then word was sent to the Princess Mary, "that if she considered it proper to insist on her lineal rights the convention would persist in declaring her sole sovereign." Her answer was: "That she was the prince's wife, and never meant to be other than in subjection to him, and that she did not thank any one for setting up for her an interest divided from that of her husband." That settled the matter; for the national convention of lords and commons decided that the Prince of Orange was to be offered the crown, and that his wife was to have joint sovereignty. Their children, if they had any, were to succeed them, but if not the Princess Anne was next in the line.

Being satisfied at last, William permitted his wife to join him in England. The Princess of Orange had made herself beloved in Holland, and tears filled her eyes when she heard one of the common people say, as she was embarking, "that he hoped the English might love her as well as those had done whom she was leaving." [372]A swift, pleasant voyage soon brought Princess Mary to Gravesend, where she was met by her sister and Prince George of Denmark. The two sisters were so elated at their success that they embraced again and again, and went into perfect transports of joy. Amidst a chorus of shouts and welcomes they entered their exiled father's barge, and soon landed at Whitehall, where William met them. All those who witnessed Mary's conduct that day, even her best friends, were shocked. Gravity would have been becoming considering that she was taking possession of the home from which reverse of fortune had driven her father only a few days before; but she was excessively gay, and went all over the palace, looking into the cupboards, examining the furniture, and making remarks upon what had been removed, and what left for her use with revolting heartlessness. She took possession of the apartments Mary Beatrice had used, slept in her bed, made use of her toilet articles, and within a night or two sat down to a game of basset in the very spot her predecessor had occupied.

Next day the ceremony of recognition of William and Mary as sovereigns of England took place. They proceeded in state robes to the banqueting hall of the palace, and placed themselves in chairs of state under the royal canopy, their attendants taking their respective places near by. Then Lord Halifax made a short speech, desiring their majesties to accept the crown. The prince answered, and the princess curtsied, but showed no reluctance at assuming her father's crown. After affixing their names to the Bill of Rights, which promised enjoyment of religious liberty to every Protestant Englishman, William III. and Mary II. were proclaimed king and queen.

Lord Clarendon was so disgusted with the turn of affairs that he retired to his country seat, but he sent a letter to his niece, which must have contained some unflattering [373]remarks, for his wife, to whom he intrusted it, was afraid to deliver it. His brother Laurence had been civilly received by William; but Mary had refused to see him or his children, little girls of seven and eight years, respectively.

After a few weeks of London life King William hurried his wife away with him to Hampton Court, and only went to town on business. He pleaded ill-health as an excuse; but his conduct gave great dissatisfaction, because diversions that had attended previous courts disappeared, and the king was so surly that people feared to approach him. The queen was vivacious and affable, but as she took little or no interest in state affairs, nothing was to be gained by special attention to her, so few gathered about her.

There were many loyal citizens who positively refused to take an oath of allegiance to the new sovereigns. Among these were Lord Clarendon, four of the bishops who had been sent to the Tower by James II., and several hundred members of the English clergy, besides Archbishop San-croft, who it was fondly hoped would perform the coronation ceremony. That important event next occupied the attention of everybody at court. A new globe, sceptre, and sword of state were made for Mary II., but she was to wear the beautiful crown that her father had provided for his queen.

The eleventh of April was the day appointed; it was fraught with anxiety and care, for just as the king and queen were ready to set out for Westminster Hall news was brought to them of the successful landing of James II. in Ireland. Added to that, a letter was handed to Queen Mary by her lord chamberlain, which proved to be from her father,—the first he had written her since her arrival in England. He wrote: "That hitherto he had made all fatherly excuses for what had been done, and had attributed her part in the revolution to obedience to her husband; [374]but the act of being crowned was in her own power, and if she were crowned while he and the Prince of Wales were living, the curses of an outraged father would light upon her as well as of that God who has commanded duty to parents."

After reading this awful letter, William declared that he "had done nothing but by his wife's advice and approbation;" and she retorted, "That if her father regained his authority her husband might thank himself for letting him go as he did." When these words were reported to King James he felt convinced that his daughter Mary had desired some cruel act to be committed towards him.

Whether she had or no, she must have performed her part in the coronation ceremony with a heavy heart, for with a father's curse resting upon her how could it have been otherwise!

As the clock struck twelve the king descended the stairs of Whitehall, entered the royal barge, and was rowed to Westminster Palace, where, in a private chamber, he dressed himself in the parliamentary robes. An hour later the queen was carried in her sedan chair also to Westminster. She wore state robes of velvet, bordered with ermine; on her head was a diadem of gold, richly studded with precious stones. The procession was much smaller than that attending any previous coronation had been, because so many of the lords and ladies refused to be present.

As soon as the usual ceremonies were completed, Dr. Burnet, who had been created Bishop of Salisbury, preached the sermon; then the Bishop of London administered the oath, and anointed both sovereigns. The Archbishop of Canterbury had refused to crown either William or Mary, so that office also was performed by the Bishop of London.

The banquet was given at Westminster Hall; but every- [375]thing had gone so slowly that it was almost dark before the challenger entered. This was Dymoke, son of the champion of James II. As he flung his gauntlet upon the ground an old woman hobbled out from among the crowd that stood to witness the feast, and replaced it with a lady's glove, in which was an answer to the challenge, the time and place being appointed in Hyde Park. From two till four the next day a large man was seen to pace up and down the appointed spot; but Dymoke did not appear, and the champion of James II., whoever he was, went on his way unharmed.

King William attended parliament both before and after his coronation; but never did Queen Mary accompany him or have any voice in the government whatever.

After James II.'s defeat in Ireland, the Dutch ambassador arrived in England to congratulate the king and queen on their accession, when rewards and honors were distributed very freely, especially on those who held positions in the household of either Mary or Anne. Lord Churchill received the title of Earl of Marlborough, and henceforth Anne's confidential friend will be known by the name of Lady Marlborough.

Now Princess Anne's displeasure was aroused because she failed to see any gain that had accrued to her from the revolution. While others had attained wealth and station, she had heard a rumor that King William had expressed his astonishment at her having a revenue of thirty thousand pounds per annum, and wondered how she could possibly spend it. This alarmed her, particularly as she had been promised an additional sum by her brother-in-law, which she soon saw there was no probability of getting. King William carried economy to such an excess that he objected to Anne's having separate meals for her branch of the family; but his manners at table were so disagreeable [376]that no lady cared to be present when he ate. He was unpolished in every action, selfish, vulgar, and ill-natured in the extreme. One day a dish of early green peas was placed in front of Anne; they were the first of the season, and looked particularly inviting; but a look was all she got of them, for the king took possession of the dish and devoured the entire contents.

William was inhospitable, too, excepting to his own countrymen. When he dined at St. James's Palace, Marshal Schomberg, the general of the foreign troops, sat at his right hand, and some Dutch officers occupied other places at the table; but if any English nobleman came in William neither spoke to them nor invited them to sit down and eat, which common courtesy demanded. This was very galling, for it humbled the English and placed the Dutch in the position of their conquerors.

The Earl of Marlborough had an aid-de-camp named Dillon, who was intimate with Arnold von Keppel, a favorite page of King William. These boys were usually present at the royal dinners. One day Dillon said: "I have never heard your master utter a word to anybody; does he ever speak?"

"Oh, yes," replied von Keppel, "he talks fast enough at night over his bottle of Holland gin, when he has only his Dutch friends about him."

When Lady Marlborough questioned the young Dillon as to what he saw and heard at the king's table, he replied "That no man was ever treated with such neglect and contempt as Lord Marlborough was.

"It is just what he deserves," replied the gracious dame; "he should have considered how much better he was off some months ago." This shows that Anne's favorite was not very friendly to King William at that time.

Dillon told her besides that he heard the king say "that Lord Marlborough had the best talents for war of any one [377]in England; but he was a vile man, and though he had himself profited by his treason he abhorred the traitor."

This may have been merely a bit of gossip; but William placed the earl in command of English troops, which he sent to Holland to fill the place of the Dutch forces he thought fit to retain near him in case of need.

While Marlborough was absent his wife busied herself with Princess Anne to get possession of the best suite of apartments at Whitehall. The queen wanted them, and a regular dispute arose between the two sisters, which might have gone on indefinitely had not William settled the matter in favor of Anne, to whom he felt he must yield something for peace sake. She retained her palace of the Cockpit also, and demanded the one at Richmond; but that passed into the possession of Madame Puissars, one of the daughters of Lady Villiers, and she would not relinquish it.

From that hour the royal sisters were at enmity with each other, though for a time they kept up an appearance of cordiality

On the very evening that a report was brought to William and Mary of the death of James II. in Ireland they attended the theatre; but it happened the play contained so many allusions to various actions of their majesties relating to their accession and the treachery that preceded it, that they were both rendered excessively uncomfortable, particularly as each time the whole audience turned and looked straight at them. After that the master of the court amusements was ordered to be very careful what plays were produced.

Several of Shakespeare's were prohibited, but particularly King Lear, which is not surprising. Nevertheless, the whole country blamed Queen Mary for her indifference to her father's fate, and verses containing the most scathing [378]satire on her conduct were constantly distributed at the various coffee-houses.

Princess Anne had a son born during the summer, which was a very joyful event for all the royal family represented at Hampton Court. They were pleased, because as the child would be educated in the Reformed faith, there would be little probability of his being superseded by the Roman Catholic line of Stuart.

The king and queen stood sponsors for the infant, who was baptized William, and the same day proclaimed Duke of Gloucester. Mary fondled her little nephew a great deal, and paid more attention to her sister than she had done before. But she became dreadfully angry when she found out that through the instrumentality of Lady Marlborough Anne had applied to the House of Commons for an income to be settled on herself. It was perfectly natural that the princess should make this demand, and it was granted; but Mary accused her of deceit and ingratitude for acting in such an underhand manner, and asked her in an angry tone: "What was the meaning of the proceedings in the House of Commons?"

Anne replied: "That she heard her friends there wished she should have a settled income."

"Friends?" asked the queen, haughtily, "Pray what friends have you but the king and me?"

Perhaps Queen Mary might not have objected to a provision being made for her sister, had it not been the decision of parliament that the fifty thousand pounds they granted Anne should be deducted from King William's income. But she did not get it, for her brother-in-law managed to postpone the payment of the money throughout the summer, and Anne became deeply involved in debt. So much ill-feeling had grown up between her and her sister in consequence of this pecuniary difficulty that she resolved [379]to remove from Hampton Court. An excellent excuse offered itself in the illness of her baby, for he did not thrive for the first two or three months of his existence, and it was thought change of air would benefit him. Lord Craven offered his fine house at Kensington for the prince's nursery; and just before his removal a young Quakeress, named Mrs. Pack, was engaged to nurse him. Anne was soon gratified by seeing a decided improvement in her child, who was taken out every day to get the air in a little carriage drawn by a pair of ponies no larger than goodsized dogs. These animals were led by Dick Drury, the Prince of Denmark's coachman.

Meanwhile the Earl of Marlborough returned from Holland, when he and his wife put their heads together and took such decided steps in favor of Anne's income that before the end of the year the Commons intimated to the king the propriety of allowing her fifty thousand pounds.

The Protestant branch of the royal family firmly held the reins of government in England at last but they were no happier than the exiled Catholic portion, and dissatisfaction had grown steadily among the masses.

James II. had left his country free from debt. One year after his deposition the revenue was minus three millions of pounds. The king had not spent it all; but dishonesty was the order of the day, and whoever could obtain a government contract, whether for raising a regiment, provisioning, or clothing the army in Ireland, or providing ammunition for the navy, stole more than half the sum they received. They took advantage of the unsettled state of public affairs to enrich themselves.

Thus the English navy—the pride of the sailor-king, James—sustained a shameful defeat, and the seamen were perfectly well aware that it was not lack of skill and bravery on their part that caused it. The soldiers in Ire land [380]were supplied with bad food and damaged clothing, and many of them died of disease.


James had never permitted the merchant ships to be taxed for the protection they received from war-vessels; but now the convoy money reached such an enormous sum that the merchants sent an appeal to parliament to relieve them of such a dreadful tax. One of the worst offenders in exacting this extortion was Captain Churchill, brother to the Earl of Marlborough, and so serious was the charge brought against him that he [381]was expelled from the House of Commons, of which he was a member, and deprived of his vessel.

A.D. 1690. The Duke of Schomberg made serious complaints by letter to the king, to whom he wrote with regard to Mr. Harbord's regiment: "I do assure your majesty that the existence of this fine regiment is limited to its standard, which leans in a corner of his dressing-room, and that is all that he can show of it. Never, in all my life, did I see a nation so willing to steal."

William knew that his throne was tottering beneath so much corruption, and he deserved the misery such knowledge occasioned him. One day he was discussing his troubles with his favorite, Bentinck, whom he had created Earl of Portland, and expressed his surprise at the financial condition of the country..

Portland asked his royal friend, "Whether he believed that there was one honest man in the whole of Great Britain?"

"Yes, there are many," replied William, with a deep-drawn sigh, "there are many men of high honor in this country as well as in others,—perhaps more; but, my Lord Portland, they are not my friends."

The following spring King William meant to join his troops in Ireland, and purchased Lord Nottingham's estate at Kensington, in order that a palace might be completed thereon by the time he should return. The king was a martyr to asthma, and could scarcely breathe in the smoky atmosphere of London; therefore, he determined to have a home, not too far off, in a healthful district.

Queen Mary superintended the building of this palace, and displayed extraordinary taste in the planning of the grounds and the laying out of the gardens. This occupied a great deal of her time during the king's absence, but as he left the government in her hands she had other matters [382]to attend to besides. Nine councillors were appointed to advise and assist the queen; but Prince George was not of their number, because he had hired some Danish troops to fight against his father-in-law, and accompanied the king to Ireland.


Queen Mary acted with a great deal of decision, and wrote letters to her husband every day to keep him informed of everything that transpired. When a French fleet appeared in the channel she had a large number of noblemen who were not friendly to her cause arrested. Among these were her two uncles, who had viewed her conduct with shame and disgust. Her next step was to banish all Catholics from London and its vicinity. Her position was really dreadful, for she was surrounded by secret enemies and people who consulted their own interest above everything else. The defeat of the navy by the French at [383]Beachy Head was a great misfortune that would not have befallen the English if their ships had been kept in proper condition; but there was no one to look out for them as King James had done. Queen Mary had no confidence in several candidates who offered themselves for the command, and others whom she desired to take it had no confidence in themselves for naval service. This defeat was soon forgotten, however, when news arrived of the victory of William's army at the Boyne. Without any thought for the fate of her father, Mary gave herself up to rejoicing over the success of her husband,—the one subject that filled her mind. She at once began to urge his return, but William was too good a general not to know that the contest was not yet decided. Much misery had been caused in Ireland by the presence of his enormous army, and that wretched country was not yet to cease groaning under his despotism. When compelled to raise the siege of Waterford, William was asked how the sick and wounded prisoners were to be disposed of. "Burn them!" was his wicked command; and this was only one of the many cruel acts really perpetrated by his troops.

William was anxious to return to England; but, as the victorious French fleet occupied both the English channel and that of St. George, it was no safe matter for him to venture past their ships.

Meanwhile, the queen continued her daily letters, and made most humble apologies to her despotic lord, because his Kensington Palace was not quite ready for his reception, and still smelt of the fresh paint. She took all the blame on herself, and expressed her willingness to put herself to any inconvenience, no matter how great, if only she might advance his comfort and hasten his return. This wifely devotion would be all right if William had been a good husband, but he was not, and showed himself incapable of appreciating the sacrifices offered for his sake. [384]Queen Mary was sorely perplexed about the command of the navy. Her father had left it ruler of the seas, but two disastrous defeats that had overtaken it since her accession had so demoralized the sailors and destroyed the vessels that none of the old sea-captains could be induced to contend against the well-appointed fleet of Louis XIV. She proposed Churchill in one of her letters, but she ought to have recoiled from placing the man who had extorted convoy money from the merchant ships in such an important position of trust. At last the French fleet left the Irish coast, and gave the king a chance to slip over to England, which he gladly began to prepare for; but first he attempted to besiege Limerick. Twelve hundred of his soldiers were killed, but the governor made such a desperate resistance that William raised the siege, and embarked for England with Prince George of Denmark.

His return had been delayed so much longer than he intended that Kensington Palace was ready for his reception. After spending a couple of days at Hampton Court, he went with the queen to their new home, where they remained throughout the autumn.

Mary possessed unusual ability for governing, as she proved later, when her husband was carrying on his war in Flanders. As soon as he finished his Irish campaign, his whole time and attention were directed towards preparations for his war, which was a great drain on the wealth of Great Britain, and consequently a source of dissatisfaction to the people.

Lord Marlborough made his first military success in Ireland just after William had returned from that country, and was warmly thanked for it, when he presented himself at Kensington, by the king and queen, though they had not forgiven him for the interest he took in procuring Princess Anne's income for her.

[A.D. 1691.] [385]At the beginning of the following year the king embarked for the Hague, leaving the same nine lords to advise and assist the queen as before. A plot for the restoration of James II. had been discovered; but that did not detain William after his arrangements were perfected for the war he was anxious to continue.

The very day after his departure the trial of Lord Preston and Mr. Ashton began. Both were implicated in this plot, and both had occupied important positions in the household of King James. Ashton was executed, but Preston's life was spared in this way: Lady Catherine Graham, a little girl nine years of age, was his daughter, and loved him very dearly. During his trial she remained at Windsor Castle, where she had lived up to that period with her parents. The day after Lord Preston was condemned the queen found the child in St. George's gallery gazing earnestly up at a picture of James II. Her mournful expression attracted the attention of Mary, who asked little Catherine, "What she saw in that picture that made her look at it so steadily?"

"I was thinking," replied the child, "how hard it is that my father must die for loving yours."

The queen's conscience was pricked by this answer, and she signed Lord Preston's pardon.

But she may have had another reason for this good deed, for Preston could tell all the particulars of the plot, and did so. His evidence caused the punishment of many of the nobility and clergy, and led to the imprisonment of the queen's uncle, Lord Clarendon, who remained shut up in the Tower as long as Mary's regency lasted. Many people were put to the torture who either had conspired against their majesties or were suspected of doing so; and Sancroft, the Archbishop of Canterbury, besides other Church of England clergymen, were deprived of their positions, [386]because they refused to take the oath of allegiance to William and Mary.

During these dreadful proceedings King William's life had been in danger on the coast of Holland, where a dense fog prevented his making land as soon as he expected. Hearing from some fisherman that he was not more than a mile and a half from shore, the king resolved to be rowed in his barge. The Duke of Ormond and some other noblemen accompanied him. In a few moments the boat was lost in the fog, and could neither approach the shore nor return to the fleet. Night came on, and the waves dashed over the king, as he lay in the bottom of the boat covered up with his cloak. Some one expressed alarm at the situation when William asked sternly, "What, are you afraid to die with me?" At daybreak the fog had risen, and the party in the royal barge landed.

The king met with a grand reception at the Hague, for this was his first appearance there since he had mounted the British throne, and the Dutch considered that he had made the conquest of Great Britain. They hailed him "The Conqueror," which was not a pleasant sound to the Englishmen who had accompanied him.

After a stay of three months William returned to Eng-land for a supply of money and troops, and arrived just in time to see the Palace of Whitehall burned to the ground. Queen Mary barely escaped with her life, for she was a sound sleeper, and had not been aroused until the fire was well under way in the part of the palace she occupied.

The enmity between Mary and Anne was kept alive by several disagreeable circumstances, and encouraged by the partisans of each.

We have seen what influence Lord Marlborough and his wife exerted over the Princess Anne. Their ambition prompted them to prefer a request through her that the [387]Order of the Garter might be bestowed on the earl as a reward for his military merit. This was refused by Queen Mary, and Marlborough was so enraged that he at once set to work to conspire for the downfall of herself and the king. As he was one of the council of nine appointed to assist the queen in governing, her position became dangerous, particularly as Marlborough wrote James II., "That he regretted his crimes against him, and would bring the Princess Anne back to her duty at the least word of encouragement."

James's only reply was, "That his good intentions must be proved by deeds rather than words."

The result was a very dutiful letter written by Anne to her father; but as Lady Fitzharding acted as a spy for the king, both he and Queen Mary knew all about the letter long before it reached its destination. It was written near the end of the year, and shortly after William's return from Flanders, where some bloody battles had been fought, and a great number of lives had been lost among the English troops; so his majesty's temper was not sweetened in the least.

When it was Marlborough's turn to act as gentleman of the bed-chamber he began his duties, but was soon dismissed, and afterwards received a message, "that the king and queen desired Lord Marlborough to absent himself from their presence for the future."

This made Princess Anne very angry; but her anger was changed to alarm, when she was informed by an anonymous letter that the next step of the government would be to imprison Lord Marlborough, and added a warning as to the treachery of Lady Fitzharding. The king and queen brought no charge; because, if they had dared openly to accuse Marlborough of trying to effect a reconciliation between Anne and her father, many of their subjects would have followed his example.

[A.D. 1692.] [388]Shortly after her husband's dismissal, Lady Marlborough attended Princess Anne to a court reception. The next day Queen Mary wrote her sister that not only must the lady not appear again at court, but she must be at once dismissed from her service, because her presence at the Cockpit gave Lord Marlborough an excuse for appearing where he was forbidden to come.

Anne wrote her sister a letter full of remonstrance, praising the virtues of Lady Marlborough, and refusing to part with her. The only reply she got was an official message from Queen Mary, warning Lord and Lady Marlborough to remain no longer at the palace.

But Anne was determined not to part with her favorite, so politely informed the queen rather than do so she herself would depart. She then applied to the Duchess of Somerset for the loan of her Sion house for the summer, and received the reply, "that Sion house was entirely at her service."

King William had requested the Duke of Somerset not to grant the demand of Princess Anne; and finding that he had not been obeyed, he determined on a petty revenge, rather unusual with him. He ordered that Anne should be deprived of the guards that had attended her ever since her father had allowed her to set up an establishment of her own. This was a serious matter, because highwaymen infested all the roads in the vicinity of London, and the princess was really stopped once when driving out, and robbed of all the jewels and money she had with her. The king and queen were very much censured for allowing their sister to go about in such an unprotected state. This was done by means of placards and circulars; for there were no daily papers in those days for the expression of public opinion, and, as a rule, they were made out in rhyme. Sometimes they were set to music and sung about the streets or in the various coffee-houses. [389]William returned to his Flemish campaign again in March, and left his wife to govern alone for the third time. Previous to his departure he had signed the warrant which authorized the massacre of Glencove. A hundred men, women, and children were slaughtered in cold blood in this Highland glen; but William was probably ignorant of the details of this atrocious crime, which cast a dark shadow over his glory. He may have thought that the intention of his agents in Scotland was merely to extirpate a band of thieves, but such was not the case; theirs was an act of outrageous cruelty prompted by revenge, and William was too much interested in his campaign to pay much attention to it.

One of Mary's first public acts after her husband's departure was to review a band of ten thousand men in Hyde Park, who were destined to defend the capital in case of an invasion from France. Next she sent Russell, an arrogant, dishonest politician, in charge of the English navy, to combine with the Dutch fleet in opposition to the French. It was necessity that compelled the queen to choose Russell for her admiral: she would have preferred the more able Marlborough; but as he was now an open enemy, ready at a moment's notice to fly to the side of King James, that could not be.

Princess Anne was seriously ill a short time after, and the queen went to see her as soon as she heard of it; but instead of talking kindly to her sister, and expressing sympathy, she merely sat by her bedside for a few moments, and then said: "I have made the first step towards reconciliation by coming to you, and I now hope that you will make the next by dismissing Lady Marlborough." The remark was certainly ill-timed, and no doubt the queen regretted it later; but she never told her sister so, and they remained enemies to the end. Anne's reply, which [390]was made in a weak, trembling voice on account of her illness, was: "I have never in my life disobeyed your majesty but in this one particular, and I hope at some time or other it will appear as unreasonable to your majesty as it does now to me." Queen Mary immediately arose and took her departure, but repeated to Prince George, as he was leading her to her carriage, precisely what she had said to his wife. An attack of fever followed her sister's visit, and for several days Anne's life was despaired of, but she recovered at last. No sooner was her convalescence established, however, than she was thrown into a dreadful state of distress, because the queen had ordered Marlborough to be arrested and hurried off to the Tower. The charge brought against him was that he was in correspondence with the court at St. Germain; and while the French invasion threatened Mary thought best to secure herself against his treachery by putting him safely out of the way.

Princess Anne considered herself a very ill-used sister, and never lost an opportunity of appearing in the attitude of injured innocence, so she wrote to Stillingfleet, Bishop of Worcester, and requested him to come to her. He obeyed, and she showed him a letter she had written her sister, the queen, in which she requested permission to wait upon her majesty, but dared not do so without it, because of the displeasure she had incurred. At the conclusion of the letter the princess added, that she would not think of returning to the Cockpit to live unless it was agreeable to her majesty. Anne's reason for sending this submissive document through the Bishop of Worcester, was that she wanted everybody to know she had tried to act in a friendly manner towards her sister.

After reading the letter the bishop consented to be the bearer of it, and the reply he brought back was decided and formal.



[393]The queen stated that she had done all towards a reconciliation that she meant to do, and that if Princess Anne would not consent to the dismissal of Lady Marlborough she need not trouble herself to come to court; for she would not be received.

Knowing that in the circumstances a residence at the Cockpit would be anything but agreeable, Anne retained it only for those of her attendants who were not obnoxious to the government, and leased Berkeley House for herself. Then she wrote to Lady Marlborough, who was with her husband, and related all that had happened, closing her letter with assurances of undying devotion and a desire soon to be reunited.

The battle of La Hogue was so decided a success for the English navy that it restored some of its lost credit. Queen Mary was well pleased with the valor of her sailors, and sent thirty thousand pounds in gold to be distributed among them, and a gold medal to each of the officers. But she deserves credit for a still worthier deed; she ordered the unfinished palace of Greenwich to be fitted up for the wounded seamen, and every possible care to be taken of them.

After the victory of La Hogue the queen made an effort to keep alive the popular enthusiasm by receiving addresses of congratulation, dressed in her regal robes, and by reviewing the militia and artillery companies in person. But she was at the same time guilty of several acts of tyranny in causing the death of those whom the jury had failed to convict.

She kept Lord Marlborough shut up in the Tower as long as possible, and only released him at last on bail. Meanwhile, Princess Anne was deprived of the society of her favorites, but she frequently wrote to Lady Marlborough, and referred to the king as "Caliban," or "that Dutch [394]monster"; she sometimes mentioned her little son, the Duke of Gloucester, and said that she patiently awaited the bright day when he should arrive at man's estate, so that England might flourish again.

In order to rid the metropolis of burglars, and the neighboring roads of highwaymen, Queen Mary issued a proclamation offering forty pounds a head for such offenders. This led to the execution of an enormous number of people without remedying the evil, and the reward thus obtained was called "blood-money." Queen Mary's order was meant to benefit her subjects, but it proved a serious evil, for the prisons were soon filled to overflowing, and the jailers and thief-catchers played into each other's hands, and often punished innocent people for the sake of the "blood-money." They managed in this way: One of the villains would pretend to be a professional robber, and entice a couple of youths or dishonestly inclined men to join him in waylaying and robbing a certain party. That party would of course be a confederate, who would follow up the dupes, trace the stolen property with the assistance of the originator of the crime, and by that means cause two arrests and executions, for which the human fiends would receive eighty pounds. Then the chiefs engaged in the plot would meet and divide the spoils at an entertainment to which they gave the name of "the blood-feast."

The executions under this system amounted to as many as forty a month in the city of London alone. Another evil which exists to this very day is to be traced to William and Mary's reign; it is the establishment of gin-shops. William gave encouragement to the manufactories of spirituous liquors, the imbibing of which is the source of most of the crime and sorrow of the world, and any one who has noticed the number of gin-shops in London, and the drinking saloons in other cities, can scarcely be blind to the evil they tend to promote. [395]Before King William returned to England again much blood had been shed, and the wealth of both France and Great Britain was nearly exhausted. When Louis XIV. was discussing the probable termination of the war he said: "Ah, the last guinea will carry the victory." He was right, for the people of both countries were heavily taxed, and it was only a question who should hold out longer with their guineas.

Whenever the king was with her, Mary abandoned all government cares, and took to needlework, in which she was imitated by her ladies. Her favorite occupation in this line was the making of knotted fringe of white flax-thread, that no doubt closely resembled the macramé lace of the present day. The Dutch ladies knitted, and even took their work to church, and kept their fingers employed while listening to a sermon.

A.D. 1693. King William's return from Flanders was celebrated by a grand thanksgiving dinner at Guildhall, and another at the armory of the Tower, where their majesties dined in state, and were waited on by the master architects and workmen in masonic aprons and regalia. It was the king's policy to gain favor with his English subjects, because he had only come among them for more supplies, and was off again within four months, to remain until towards the end of the year.

During that interval Queen Mary's navy met with two disastrous defeats, and the king had lost the hard-fought, bloody battle of Landen in Flanders. The people of England were groaning under the weight of heavy taxation, and general dissatisfaction with the government was openly expressed. There had been several dishonest prime ministers; but previous to his departure the king appointed Charles Talbot, Earl of Shrewsbury, to that important position.

We have not said anything about the little Duke of [396]Gloucester for a long time; but it must not, therefore, be supposed that he was forgotten either by his mother or his royal aunt. He lived at Campden House, and was taken daily to visit the queen whenever she was at Kensington.

A.D. 1694. Princess Anne was very desirous that her son should be made a Knight of the Garter; but her relations with the queen were such that she dared not ask it. However, she sent the prince to visit her majesty one day with a broad blue ribbon passed over his shoulder and fastened down on the left side as a reminder. No notice was taken of it; but the child had evidently been taught that something was to be accorded him in connection with the ribbon, for when the queen offered him a brilliantly-colored bird, he looked very sober, and said, "He would not rob her majesty of it."

When he had attained his fifth year, the prince's mother thought it high time that he should be put into masculine attire, and consulted her husband about it, saying that the clothing he was wearing interfered with his military amusements. An order was accordingly given to Lady Fitzhard-ing, who procured for the child a suit of white cloth with silver loops and buttons, and a periwig. Under his waistcoat he wore a stiff corset that hurt him dreadfully. His tailor, Mr. Hughes, was sent for to remedy the trouble, and when he appeared at Campden House he was surprised to find himself surrounded by a score of mimic soldiers,—the little prince having summoned his regiment to punish the man who had caused him pain. There is no telling how far the little urchins would have gone, for they were beating and mauling Mr. Hughes at a great rate, when Lewis Jenkins, the usher, appeared to inquire into the cause of the racket. An explanation followed, and, upon the tailor's giving a faithful promise that he would alter the stays to fit his little highness, he was released. [397]One day the little regiment was busily drilling in Kensington Gardens, while the king and queen watched their movements with a great deal of interest. Suddenly the Duke of Gloucester approached his uncle, and gravely offered himself and his whole troop for the Flemish war. Then turning to Queen Mary, he added: "My mamma once had guards as well as you; why has she not now?" Her majesty colored and looked surprised, while the king offered the drummer of the regiment two guineas as a reward for the noise he could make; whereupon the little fellow drowned any further awkward questioning. Of course, Queen Mary knew very well that the prince could not remember when his mother's guard had been dismissed, therefore all the knowledge he had of it was what he had heard from his parents.

The Duke of Gloucester's soldiers were often a nuisance to the neighborhood; for on their way home after drill they would enter houses on the road to London, and help themselves to any dainty bit of food the larder happened to contain. This they did in imitation of the soldiers quartered in the vicinity of London, and felt especially privileged as "Gloucester's men." Like most people who ape others, it was the bad qualities these little boys selected.

Next time King William returned from Flanders he found the bribery and corruption in his government just as bad as ever, and the new prime minister worse than the old ones had been. Parliament was opened, and charges of the gravest character were brought even against the queen's immediate attendants, in some of whom she reposed the utmost confidence. This was a source of great trouble to Queen Mary, and in the midst of it Archbishop Tillotson fell dead in the pulpit one Sunday while performing the service.

Christmas was approaching, and the royal pair decided [398]to spend it quietly at Kensington Palace. By the twentieth of December the queen was so ill that she must have had some doubts as to her recovery, for she sat up at her secretary the whole night examining and burning papers that she desired nobody to see. Perhaps this occupation aggravated her illness, for she grew worse, and two days later was considered in danger. Princess Anne sent to ask permission to wait on her majesty. The message was delivered to the first lady-in-waiting, who went into the bed-chamber where the queen lay, and in a few moments returned with the message, "That the king would send an answer the next day."

But the only message received by the Princess Anne was a request to postpone her visit, because it was necessary to keep the queen as quiet as possible. The king was so distressed at his wife's danger that he had his camp-bed removed to her room, and remained with her night and day.

At last Archbishop Tennison, who had replaced Tillotson, informed the queen that her end was drawing near. She was not at all surprised, and said, "That she thanked God she had left nothing to the last hour; she had then nothing to do but to look up to God and submit to His will."

Then the last rites of the church were administered; but the queen did not die until the twenty-eighth of December, in the sixth year of her reign, and the thirty-third of her age. Not a word had the dead woman left for the sister with whom she had quarrelled; not an expression of sorrow or regret for the father whom she had injured.

All the members of the House of Commons marched in the funeral procession, and Queen Mary was interred at Westminster Abbey.

Queen Mary had desired to convert Greenwich Palace [399]into a retreat for seamen, which work she had begun after the battle of La Hogue, as we have seen. After her death King William reproached himself for having neglected her wishes in this respect. He lost no time in ordering a plan which was supplied by the well-known architect, Christopher Wren, and soon a magnificent building arose in place of the one that had been burned down. The king did not live to see the completion of this asylum, otherwise a statue of the real foundress would have graced the court. However, the building itself is a noble monument to the memory of Queen Mary II. [400]


(A.D. 1694-1714.)

We have already heard a great deal about Anne, because up to the death of her sister, Queen Mary, their lives are so closely connected that it is impossible to understand some of the incidents without mentioning both sisters. The death of Mary brought Princess Anne more into public notice as heir presumptive to the throne, though it was many years before she became Queen of England. Heretofore, as we have seen, she lived like a private person at Berkeley House, and had not even been permitted to appear at court, because of the ill-feeling that existed between her and her sister Mary. Lord and Lady Marlborough, whose devotion to Princess Anne had seriously offended the queen, still continued her warm friends, and the princess wrote letters to her father filled with professions of loyalty and affection as before. King James did not attach much importance to them; but how could he, poor man, after the sad experience he had had. He knew perfectly well that his daughter merely consulted her own interest whether she appeared in the light of his friend or his enemy; for never was a father worse treated than poor James had been by both his daughters.

The Duke of Gloucester was with his mother when Queen Mary's death was announced, and his attendants were surprised at the indifference he manifested. He had been fond of his royal aunt; but as he was only five years



[403]of age, he could not comprehend the full significance of death, and like most children, was more interested in those people and objects that immediately surrounded him. It was otherwise with his mother, for she and her sister had loved each other devotedly in early years; and when the grave closed over Queen Mary's body, all enmity was forgotten, and Princess Anne could only remember that a once fondly loved relative was irrevocably lost. The old affection returned, and she wept bitter tears. The memory of her sister made her heart warm towards King William, whom she had thoroughly detested for several years. Perhaps his desperate grief touched her, for he shut himself up in Kensington Palace and gave vent to the most agonizing sobs. Those who knew him best were surprised that a man of his disposition could take sorrow so to heart; but he had lost a devoted wife and friend,—one who had sought to place him in the foremost ranks on every occasion, and to gain for him the credit and praise that was really due to her own superior talent for ruling. William III. was well aware of this, and of the fact that henceforth his hold on the crown was by no means secure. His only right to his lofty position was through his wife, and now that she was removed might not a breath deprive him of it? While the war lasted he was compelled to absent himself from England nearly half the year. Hitherto Queen Mary had supplied his place, who was to do so now? His position seemed difficult and dangerous. One day, when he was sitting alone with his head bowed down in grief, Lord Somers entered the room. The king took no notice of him whatever. After waiting a few moments, Somers approached and stated the cause of his intrusion, which was a proposition he desired to make that the hostility of the court towards Princess Anne should terminate.

"My lord, do as you please; I can think of no business," was the reply of the sorrow-stricken king. [404]Lord Somers chose to construe this undecided answer into consent, and so set to work to negotiate a reconciliation through Lord Sunderland, by whose advice Princess Anne was induced to write the following letter to the king:—

Sir,—I beg your majesty's favorable acceptance of my sincere and hearty sorrow for your great affliction in the loss of the queen. And I do assure your majesty I am as sensibly touched with this sad misfortune as if I had never been so unhappy as to have fallen into her displeasure.

It is my earnest desire your majesty would give me leave to wait upon you as soon as it can be without inconvenience to yourself, and without danger of increasing your affliction, that I may have the opportunity myself, not only of repeating this, but assuring your majesty of my real intentions to omit no occasion of giving you constant proofs of my sincere respect and concern for your person and interest, as becomes, sir,

Your majesty's affectionate sister and servant, Anne.

The princess must have felt her welfare at stake as well as that of her son; otherwise she could not have been induced to write so dutiful a letter to the brother-in-law who had treated her so unkindly for many years. It was Archbishop Tennison who took it upon himself to deliver the letter, and at the same time to say all he could in praise of the disinterested conduct of the princess during the period when she was debarred from appearing at court. King William knew better, but gave the archbishop credit for honesty, and concluded that he might with safety trust to the fidelity of Anne now, because her interest was closely linked with his own. He therefore sent her some of the late queen's jewels, in token of reconciliation, and appointed an interview at Kensington Palace.

Anne was in such a dreadful state of health, and so puffed up with dropsy, that she had to be carried to the presence-chamber in a chair. Both she and the king were affected to tears when they met, and after a few remarks they retired to a private room, where they conversed for [405]nearly three-quarters of an hour. The details of that interview are not known; but it is certain that the royal brother and sister-in-law agreed to combine all their interests against James II. and his son, and William further consented to an amnesty with the Earl of Marlborough, for whom he felt supreme contempt.


When Bentinck was consulted as to his opinion of the reconciliation, he warned the king against putting any trust in the professions of either Marlborough or the princess; but he had withdrawn himself from the side of his once beloved master for some mysterious reason, and another was required to take his place, so in course of time we shall find the much-despised earl courted and honored by King William. [406]The reconciliation between Anne and the king had not been effected too soon, for the Jacobites began to agitate the question whether the princess was not the real Queen of Great Britain, and Ireland; and those provinces that were not kept in subjection by the dread of a standing army were prepared to rebel against a foreign king, who held his position merely by permission of parliament. These were all prepared to support Anne, with the hope that once placed upon the throne she would not hesitate to resign in favor of her father and brother, because her friendly correspondence with the former was known. Many important arrests were made, and many agitators escaped from the kingdom. Anne continued writing to her father, and made promises that she had no idea of fulfilling; but he was not deceived, though he deeply deplored the alliance she had formed for the second time with his enemy.

When William returned to Flanders he left no power in the hands of Anne whatever, but the council of nine took entire charge of government affairs, and the Archbishop of Canterbury was one of their number.

King William's reign, contrary to the expectation of all the statesmen of Europe, was decidedly more prosperous and more tranquil after Queen Mary's death than it had been during her life.

In course of time Princess Anne's health improved, and she became a great huntress. This exercise was begun for the cure of gout and dropsy, but was continued on account of the pleasure the princess derived from it. She was too fat to hunt on horseback, but went in a sort of sedan chair, hung between two very high wheels, and drawn by one horse. How the stag was ever brought down when hunted from such an equipage is a mystery that experienced sportsmen may be able to solve. [407]The young Duke of Gloucester still lived at Campden House, because it was considered a healthful spot, and his health was so delicate that it was feared he might die if not carefully watched. He had a disease called water on the brain, which made his head larger than it ought to have been, and often threatened to prostrate him. There were times when he could not bear to go up or down stairs without having a person to hold him on either side. This fancy was indulged for a time, but at last it was attributed to cowardice, for there was no one sufficiently well-informed as to the nature of his disease to suspect that he felt dizzy. His mother once shut herself up in a room with him for an hour to try and reason him out of being led about, as he was then past five years of age, but he obstinately refused to stir alone until he was whipped again and again. The fact of a child of his vivacity fearing to go up and down stairs without assistance ought to have been sufficient evidence that something was wrong with him; but after the whipping, which certainly ought not to have been administered to a person suffering from any disease of the brain, the young prince dispensed with support, though his head must often have ached and felt very confused. Prince George of Denmark was particularly anxious that no infirmity should be observed in his son, because he could not bear to have him held up to ridicule by the scribblers, who considered no calamity sacred from the merciless attacks of their pens. The brutal articles that appeared daily against the "the young pretender" prompted him to shield his son from similar ones by the opposite party. That was all very well; but disease cannot be whipped out of anybody, and so the prince was encouraged to fight against his malady until he became very ill. Doctor Radcliffe was summoned from Oxford, and did all he could for the little sufferer, who had a fever which kept him in bed [408]two whole weeks. But he was not permitted to be quiet, for his small soldiers were constantly at his bedside blowing their trumpets, beating drums, building toy fortifications, and making a great deal more noise most of the time than was good for the invalid. The old nurse of Princess Anne sent the sick boy a large doll dressed as a warrior by one of his attendants named Wetherby. This present occasioned much indignation among the young soldiers, because it was full six months since any of them had condescended to play with toys of so effeminate a nature, and sentence of destruction was immediately pronounced on the doll. No sooner was it carried into effect than it was decided that the messenger ought to receive punishment, too.

A.D. 1695. But Wetherby knew what a rough lot of boys surrounded the prince, and, taking warning by the treatment the doll had received at their hands, hastened down Campden-Hill and hid himself. In the afternoon the unfortunate fellow was discovered and captured,—four grown men having been pressed into the service,—and locked up all night. The next morning he was brought before the Duke of Gloucester, who pronounced his sentence. Wetherby was forthwith bound, hand and foot, mounted on a large hobby-horse and soused all over with water from large syringes. This was all done for the amusement of the duke; and as Wetherby had taken part on various occasions in playing similar jokes on the men who assisted the boys, they showed him no mercy now. When the poor prisoner was half-drowned, he was drawn into the presence of the invalid, who enjoyed immensely his woeful plight.

The following summer change of air was strongly recommended for the royal boy by Dr. Radcliffe, and, after seeking accommodation at several watering-places, the Princess [409]Anne decided to take him to Twickenham. There she was offered three adjoining houses which belonged to Mrs. Davies, a gentlewoman more than eighty years of age, who had belonged to the court of Charles I. This lady was bright, cheerful, healthy, and excessively pious. She was simple in her habits, and had lived on fruit and herbs nearly all her life. She was well-born and rich, and owned a large estate, on which were planted a number of fine fruit trees. Her cherries, which were just ripe when the princess went to Twickenham, were the finest in all the country around; and the old lady gave the people of the royal household full permission to gather as many as they chose, providing that they would not injure her trees, of which she was very proud.

At the end of a month Princess Anne ordered her treasurer to hand Mrs. Davies a hundred guineas for rent and the trouble her people had given; but the aged hostess positively refused to accept a farthing, and when pressed to receive the money, she indignantly arose, and, letting the gold-pieces that had been placed in her lap, roll all over the floor, quietly walked out of the room. The princess was astonished at such generosity, and declared that, although it would have been a pleasure to her to reward the old lady to the utmost of her power, her feelings must not be hurt by a further offer of money.

The little Duke of Gloucester formed such a warm attachment for Mrs. Davies that he loved to nestle in her lap and confide to her all his secret woes. His younger and fairer associates, who lavished flattery and attention on him, were not half so attractive as the honest dame, who, having nothing to gain or lose, always told him the truth. The royal boy's religious education had not been neglected; prayers had been read to him twice every day by his chaplain; but he never knew what they meant, [410]nobody had taken the trouble to explain them; and he had naturally paid little attention to what he had failed to understand. Mrs. Davies soon comprehended where the difficulty lay; and it was from her lips that the duke learned the Lord's Prayer, the Creed, the Ten Commandments, and several hymns, all of which were carefully and patiently explained until they were made clear to his infant mind.

One Sunday, when the princess was preparing to go to church, her son asked if he might accompany her. She was surprised, because he had never made such a request before, but gave permission. Then the little Duke of Gloucester ran to inform his governess, Lady Fitzharding, who asked him if he would say the psalms,—a performance to which he had always objected.

"I will sing them," proudly replied the boy; thus showing the effect of his aged friend's instruction.

One day, while the princess was making her toilet, the boy looked up into her face and asked: "Mamma, why have you two chaplains, and I but one?"

"Pray," returned the mother, with an amused smile, "what do you give your one chaplain?" She merely asked this question to hear what sort of a reply her son would make, and to find out whether he knew that the chaplains of the royal household received no pay.

The little duke looked at her earnestly for a moment, and then said: "Mamma, I give him his liberty!"

The princess laughed heartily at the little boy's unconscious repartee.

On his return to Campden House the Duke of Gloucester found his soldier company posted as sentinels on guard, and they received their commander with presented arms and all the honors of war. After that the daily drill took place regularly on an open plain, called Wormwood Common. [411]One morning the duke fell with a pistol in his hand, and hurt his forehead against it. The wound was still bleeding when he reached Campden House, and the ladies began to pity him; but he put on a bold air and told them "that a bullet had grazed his forehead, but that as a soldier he could not cry when wounded."

There was so much ceremony observed among the royal attendants all the time that Mr. Tratt, the tutor, considered it an infringement of his rights when Jenkins, the Welsh usher, undertook to give the Duke of Gloucester his first lessons in fencing and mathematics.

The child ran to his mother every time he learned anything new to make a display of his knowledge; but Jenkins was told to "mind his own business" by those who considered that he ought to be otherwise employed. Lady Fitz-harding, in particular, found great fault with his filling the duke's head with such "stuff" as mathematics, and seemed to regard the figures drawn in geometry some sort of magic-signs that savored of witchcraft. But her husband eased her mind by assuring her that Lewis Jenkins "was a good youth, who had read much, but meant no harm." The princess ordered Lord Fitzharding to hinder Jenkins from teaching her son anything, because he might get wrong ideas, that it would be hard to correct when he began to study according to the regular method.

Shortly after she saw the duke fencing with a wooden sword, and defending himself against the attack of an imaginary foe. "I thought I forbade your people to fence with you," observed her royal highness.

"Oh yes, mamma," replied the child; "but I hope you will give them leave to defend themselves when I attack them."

He never tired of hearing tales from ancient history, and could recite many exploits of the heroes, much to the disgust [412]of the tutor, who knew that the knowledge had not been imparted by him.

On the return of her brother-in-law in the autumn, Princess Anne wrote him a letter of congratulation on his conquest of Namur. The one she wrote after the death of the queen had resulted so favorably to herself that she expected equally pleasant effects from the present one; but she soon found her mistake, for the king had come home in a bad humor, and treated her letter with silent contempt. Perhaps congratulations seemed out of place when he remembered that the lives of twelve thousand men had paid the cost of his victory, besides an enormous sum of money.

A few weeks later he made a state visit to Campden House, when the duke received him with military honors. The king was very much amused, and asked the child "whether he had any horses yet."

"Oh yes," replied he, "I have one live horse and two dead ones."

"You keep dead horses, do you?" asked his majesty. "That is not the way with soldiers, for they always bury their dead horses."

The little duke was impressed by what his uncle had said, and determined to be as much like a real soldier as possible; so he summoned his regiment as soon as the king had departed, and buried his two hobby horses that he had designated as dead ones. A Shetland pony, no larger than a Newfoundland dog, was his riding animal.

During the king's absence Princess Anne had received all due honors, as first royal lady of the realm, and this gratified her ambition entirely; but when his majesty thought fit to confer upon his favorite, Bentinck, and his heirs forever, all the rights of the Princess of Wales, not only was Anne justly indignant at seeing her son deprived [413]of his privileges, but the whole country viewed the action with extreme disfavor, and the House of Commons contested it with great warmth. William III. was compelled to revoke the grant; but the hard feeling it had aroused in the mind of Princess Anne remained, and his majesty took no pains to conciliate her. On the contrary, as soon as he was convinced that the removal of his wife had not affected his position, he began to regret the alliance he had formed with his sister-in-law, and treated her with marked disrespect. He even forbade the members of the clergy to bow before her previous to beginning their sermons, according to the custom in the Church of England at that time. To be sure, the Dean of Canterbury and the rector of St. James's Church did not pay the slightest attention to the prohibition, and the princess always returned their salute with marked civility.

King William had become dreadfully irritable since the death of his wife. We know that he was naturally surly and ill-natured; but his fondness for Holland gin excited him to such a degree that he would cane his inferior servants if they chanced to neglect even the most trifling duty. The way they tried to dodge his majesty when he was in an unusually fractious mood was amusing, and the members of the royal household called those who were obliged to submit to the blows "King William's Knights of the Cane."

A French servant, who had charge of his majesty's guns, and who attended him in his shooting excursions in the Hampden Court park, forgot one day to provide himself with shot, although it was his duty to load the fowling-piece. He did not dare to acknowledge his neglect, but kept charging the gun with powder only, and every time the king fired would exclaim, "I did never,—no, never, see his majesty miss before." Thus are petty tyrants invariably deceived.

A.D. 1696.



As the anniversary of King William's birthday approached there was a flutter of excitement at court, and all the beaux and belles of the English nobility flocked to town to attend the grand reception that was to take place. This was no pleasure to William, for he had been aided in such matters by his wife, who had known better how to conduct herself on such occasions than he did; and now that he had to undertake a ceremony which he disliked, with no one one to guide him, he felt his bereavement more deeply than ever. If he had been friendly towards Anne he might have enlisted her services, and escaped from some of the etiquette that was so irksome to him. But instead of that, he actually treated her with no more consideration than he showed to the wives of the aldermen and common councilmen, and kept her waiting with them for nearly two hours in the ante-chamber. This insult was repeated on several similar occasions, until the [415]public began to murmur, and the English officials who had access to the king took the liberty of reminding him that her royal highness was his superior by birth, and that the nation would not submit to his showing contempt towards their princess. Then his majesty deemed it prudent to alter his arrangements, and at the future receptions the lord chamberlain was instructed to usher her royal highness into the presence chamber immediately on her arrival. After that, all her attendants were treated with respect, and the king showed himself enough of a diplomatist to extend favors that would redound to his own credit. He called at Campden House and requested Princess Anne and her husband to take possession of St. James's Palace as soon as they pleased, and further surprised them with the announcement that as a garter had fallen into his possession by the death of Lord Strafford, he intended to bestow it upon his nephew, the Duke of Gloucester. This visit was succeeded by one from Burnet, the Bishop of Salisbury, who came with the information that a meeting of the Order of the Garter would be held on the sixth of January, and asked the duke if the thought of becoming a knight did not please him. "I am more pleased at the king's favor," was the discreet reply.

It was King William himself who buckled on the little duke's garter and presented the star, both of which he was to wear daily forever after,—though that office was usually performed by one of the knights.

After resting for awhile in his mother's room on his return to Campden-House, the duke went to his play-room, where he met Harry Scull, his favorite drummer. "Your dream has come true, Harry," gladly announced the royal boy, displaying his star and garter to his companion, who had dreamed that he saw his commander so adorned.

At this period the duke's malady seems to have been [416]for a time arrested, for he looked well and was full of animal spirits. This rendered his mother happier than she had been in many a day, besides she was residing in the palace of her ancestors, her rank was recognized by the king and his government, and she regularly received a liberal income. Windsor Castle was granted to her for her summer residence, though it was occasionally shared by her royal brother-in-law, who had reserved for his exclusive use Hampton Court and Kensington Palace. There was only one flaw in the happiness of Princess Anne at this period, and that was a report that when the king returned from his summer campaign there was a probability that he would bring home a Dutch bride.

Meanwhile, the Duke of Gloucester was taken to Windsor, for the first time, in company with his parents. The princess ordered Mrs. Atkinson to show her son the royal apartments in the castle, and to give him a description of the pictures. The child was particularly pleased with St. George's Hall, and clapped his hands with delight as he declared that the noble apartment would be just the place for him to fight his battles in. Next day four boys were summoned from Eaton School to be the duke's companions. They were young Lord Churchill, a mild, good-natured boy, somewhat older than the duke, son of Lord and Lady Marlborough, the two Bathursts, and Peter Boscawen. As soon as they appeared, the duke proposed that a battle should be fought in St. George's Hall, and sent for all his pikes, swords, and muskets. The music gallery, and the stairs leading to it, were to represent the castle that he meant to besiege. Mrs. Atkinson and Lewis Jenkins were in attendance, and both were expected to take part in the battle. Young Boscawen and Peter Bathurst were the enemy, and had been secretly requested not to hurt the duke; but in the heat of the fray the latter lost the sheath [417]from his sword, and before he made the discovery had wounded the duke in the neck.

Jenkins stopped the battle to ascertain the nature of the wound; but, staunching the blood with his handkerchief, the youth rushed up the stairs into the enemy's garrison.

When the battle was over, the duke asked Mrs. Atkinson if she had a surgeon near by.

"Oh, yes," she replied, "bustling about to revive the soldiers who pretended to be dead or dying."

"Pray make no jest of it," urged the child, "for Peter Bathurst has really wounded me in the battle."

The hurt was bathed and plastered up, and no serious consequence resulted; but there are not, I fancy, many boys less than seven years of age who would have continued the game, as the duke did, with the blood trickling from a wound. The sight of blood terrifies some children. Not so with the Duke of Gloucester; for when he attended his first hunt at Windsor Park, the deer's throat was cut, after it had been shot, just at his feet. Then Mr. Massam, his page, dipped his hand in the blood and smeared it all over the duke's face. This excited great surprise; but on being informed that such was the custom at first seeing a deer slain, the mischievous little duke dipped his hands in the blood and besmeared the faces of Jenkins and all the boys.

Princess Anne shrieked with terror one day when walking in the park with her husband to see her son roll down the hill of one of the castle fortifications, but he reassured her by declaring that when he was engaged in battles and sieges he would have to get used to descending such places. Prince George laughed, and always encouraged the child to such exploits with the hope of thereby making him more hardy.

July 24, being the Duke of Gloucester's birthday, a [418]grand banquet was given at St. George's Hall, at the king's expense, to the Knights of the Garter. The princess was present, and had the proud satisfaction of seeing her son walk in procession with the other knights from St. George's Chapel to the hall. All the gentlemen wore their splendid robes of the order, and took their places at the long tables in accordance with their rank. The little duke appeared in his plumes and all the gorgeous regalia that had been provided for him, and comported himself among the full-grown knights with wonderful dignity.

In the evening the princess gave a splendid ball, and received all the nobility, many of whom came from different parts of the country to do honor to the occasion. The town of Windsor was illuminated, bells rang out merrily, and the bright blaze of bonfires lit up the surrounding scene for a great distance. There were besides fireworks on the terrace, which delighted the young duke beyond everything. The entertainment concluded with a musical drama, written expressly to celebrate the birthday.

A few days later another festival to celebrate the wedding anniversary of Princess Anne and Prince George of Denmark was held. In the morning the royal couple went to visit their son, and found him superintending the firing of his little cannon in honor of the day. Three rounds were fired, which almost deafened the royal mamma, and excited her fears because of the quantity of gunpowder the duke had at his command. After this salute the boy approached his parents of his own accord, and, making a profound bow, said: "Papa, I wish you and mamma unity, peace, and concord,—not for a time, but forever." Of course the parents were charmed with the courtesy and respect of their little pet, and embraced him warmly.

Some hours later, Jenkins said to him: "You made a fine compliment to their royal highnesses to-day, sir," [419]whereupon the child returned, with gravity, "It was no compliment; it was sincere." Thus the little fellow constantly made remarks far beyond his years, and excited the wonder and admiration of all who surrounded him.

A.D. 1697. At the beginning of the new year great excitement prevailed because of the discovery of a plot against the life of the king. Sir John Fenwick was discovered to be at the head of it, and was arrested on a charge of high treason. When he found that he was to suffer death without a regular trial, Sir John gave such extraordinary evidence against the majority of the nobility, including most of the king's ministers, whom he accused of corresponding with James II., that it was said if half of the number had been arrested for treason there would not have been enough left to hang or behead the rest. Marlborough was aimed at particularly; but that could have been no surprise to William, who knew that the earl not only wrote himself during Queen Mary's lifetime, but induced Princess Anne to do likewise. But his majesty winked at this accusation, because he was convinced that personal interest would now prompt the princess and her party to continue loyal to him. Fenwick was beheaded on Tower Hill, and all his revelations were quietly ignored, but the king took pains to possess himself of all Sir John's private papers. He also kept a remarkable sorrel shooting pony that had belonged to him; but of this animal we shall hear more in the future.

Twelve gentlemen were executed the same year for plotting to waylay William and kill him, in the midst of his guards, on his return from a hunting expedition. The public were on the alert for any bit of news they could glean, and excitement ran high during the trials and executions, which took place at intervals throughout the year. Associations were formed for the protection of the king, [420]and all sorts of addresses, containing assurances of loyalty, were sent to him from corporations and private individuals. The Duke of Gloucester was one of the latter. He caused one of his soldiers, older than himself, to write the following document, to which he affixed his signature, for he could read and write quite well for so young a person:—

I, your majesty's most dutiful subject, had rather lose my life in your majesty's cause than in any man's else, and I hope it will not be long ere you conquer France. Gloucester.

Another address from the same source, signed by all his boy-soldiers and the various members of the household, ran thus: "We, your majesty's subjects, will stand by you while we have a drop of blood." Such proceedings on the part of the little duke convinced William III. that the princess was bringing up her son as his partisan, and that at least was gratifying.

He honored the festival given on the anniversary of Princess Anne's birth with his presence, and witnessed the introduction at court of the young duke, who appeared in a rich blue velvet coat. All the button-holes were studded with diamonds, and each button was composed of a superb brilliant, some of which had belonged to Queen Mary, and were presented by the king to her sister after her death.

When the boy had been installed as Knight of the Garter, his majesty had presented him with a jewel worth seven hundred pounds, which he wore also on this occasion. His flowing white periwig did not detract from the beauty of his clear bright complexion and soft blue eyes; and the little duke was the centre of attraction, surrounded by a bevy of lords and ladies, who flocked to her royal highness' drawing-room.

The king was very fond of his little nephew, and, indeed, [421]of all children, as this anecdote goes to prove: He was waiting one day in a private room for one of his secretaries, who was rather later than usual, when a gentle tap was heard on the door. "Who is there?" asked the king. "Lord Buck," was the reply; whereupon the king arose, opened the door and beheld a little boy four years of age. It was young Lord Buckhurst, son of the Lord High Chamberlain.

"And what does Lord Buck want?" asked William.

"I want you to be my horse; I have waited for you a long time."

With an amiable smile, his majesty took hold of the wagon, and dragged the little noble up and down the long gallery until he was satisfied. From the matter-of-fact way in which this favor was received by the child, there was ample proof that King William was not on duty as horse for the first time.

A.D. 1698. Up to this year the education of the Duke of Gloucester had been left in his mother's charge, because he was by no means strong, and it was not considered advisable to push him too fast. He had now arrived at the age of eight, and like all other royal children he would probably be given in charge to some great noble or clergyman. His mother dreaded the idea of parting with the delicate child, whom she had reared with so much difficulty, and was willing to make any sacrifice rather than to do so. Parliament voted the enormous sum of fifty thousand pounds per annum for the education and establishment of the Duke of Gloucester, but the king had power to dispose of the child. This was what alarmed the fond mother, for she knew that if he chose to exercise this power his majesty could annoy her excessively. It was therefore happiness to find that he only insisted on two points: one was to manage to pay out as little of the fifty thousand pounds [422]per annum, as possible; the other was that Dr. Burnet, Bishop of Salisbury, should fill the post of preceptor. This appointment was by no means agreeable to the princess, but the king was inexorable, and she was forced to submit. The duke was to live at Windsor, and the bishop was to have ten weeks of each year to attend to duties that would oblige him to give his pupil a vacation. Strange to say, the Earl of Marlborough was appointed chief governor to the young duke notwithstanding the king's former hatred of him. But this is not so remarkable as it may at first appear, if we consider that the majority of the council of nine were Marlborough's friends, who knew his power and the influence he exercised over the mind of the heiress to the throne. The appointment was therefore popular with them, particularly as he was of their number. Then again, instead of believing for a moment that in the event of his death, Marlborough and Princess Anne would desire to recall King James or his son, the king calculated that they would renounce any claim but that of the Duke of Gloucester, over whose mind the earl would have established an empire, and in whose interest he would betray the distant heir. The appointment of Marlborough was eminently satisfactory to the princess, and there were few alterations made in the list she sent of other officers for her son's household.

Lady Marlborough continued in the Princess Anne's household, but after her husband's lofty appointment she became somewhat arrogant and overbearing. The princess could not help noticing this change, which extended even to herself, and sometimes she would let fall a word or two of complaint to Abigail Hill, an humble relation of Lady Marlborough, to whom she was indebted for her position at court.

A.D. 1699. During the next year or two Princess [423]Anne continued her court with unusual splendor, while the little duke studied so hard that all his vivacity disappeared, and when he was ten years of age his face had a worn look, old enough for a youth of seventeen at least, and pitiful to behold.

We have said very little about the duke's father, for the simple reason that he led an easy, luxurious sort of a life, inoffensive and void of ambition. Somebody said of him:

"That, though he was not quite dead, he had to breathe hard to prevent being buried, because nobody perceived any other sign of life in him." Perhaps it would be well for mankind if other princes were as quiet; certainly he spared himself a deal of trouble by not interfering with public affairs.

We have seen that Bishop Burnet was appointed preceptor to the Duke of Gloucester; he was at the same time almoner to her majesty, the princess, and one of the most conceited men that ever lived. He usually preached at St. James's, and although Queen Mary had declared that his were "thundering long sermons," he could not comprehend why the ladies at court failed to give him their undivided attention. It seems that the women of the seventeenth century would cast sly glances at the beaux in church, and examine the costumes of the belles just as they do in the present one; but Bishop Burnet would not submit to such disrespect towards his own sweet self. He wanted every eye fixed on him while he preached; so, after making several complaints to Princess Anne, he at last hit upon a remedy which met with her approval. It was to have the pews where the ladies sat so barricaded with high railings that the occupants could only see beyond them by raising their eyes, and as he was the only high object when in the pulpit, they must look at him or at no man. Of course this arrangement excited [424]indignation of the fair damsels no less than of the courtiers, one of whom vented his wrath by the composition of a ballad that he took good care should come under the notice of the intermeddling bishop. It ran thus:—

"When Burnet perceived that the beautiful dames.

Who flocked to the chapel of holy St. James.

On their lovers alone their kind looks did bestow.

And smiled not at him when he bellowed below,

To the Princess he went,

With a pious intent,

This dangerous ill in the church to prevent.

'Oh, madam,' he said, ' our religion is lost,

If the ladies thus ogle the knights of the toast.

"'Your highness observes how I labor and sweat,

Their affections to raise and attention to get;

And sure when I preach, all the world will agree,

That their eyes and their ears should be pointed at me

But now I can find

No beauty so kind,

My parts to regard or my person to mind;

Nay, I scarce have the sight of one feminine face

But those of Old Oxford and ugly Arglass.

"'These practices, madam, my preaching disgrace.

Shall laymen enjoy the just rights of my place?

Then all may lament my condition so hard,

Who thrash in the pulpit without a reward.

Therefore pray condescend

Such disorders to end,

And to the ripe vineyard the laborers send,

To build up the seats that the beauties may see

The face of no brawling pretender but me.'

"The Princess by the man's importunity prest,

Though she laugh'd at his reasons allowed his request.

And now Britain's nymphs in a Protestant reign

Are locked up at prayers like the virgins in Spain."

A.D. 1700. The eleventh birthday of the Duke of Gloucester was celebrated at Windsor with the usual rejoicings. The boy reviewed his soldiers, received and made presents, fired his cannon at intervals during the day, [425]and presided over a grand banquet in the evening. His system was very much run down by the strain of hard study, and this day of excitement proved too much for him. The following morning found him with a sick headache and sore throat, and towards night he became delirious. The family physician reduced the little duke's vitality still further by bleeding him according to the custom of the times. He grew worse, and there was great lamentation in the royal household because the princess's quarrel with Dr. Radcliffe prevented his being summoned, for everybody had confidence in his skill. At last a messenger was dispatched with a humble request to the doctor to visit the little sufferer. After a great deal of urging he consented, and pronounced the disease scarlet fever. He asked who bled the duke. The physician in attendance replied that he had done so. "Then you have destroyed him, and you may finish him," said Radcliffe, "for I will not prescribe."

Of course the learned man was much censured for wilfully refusing to save the child, but he knew only too well that all his efforts would have been of no avail. Five days after his birthday festival the little duke expired.

Lord Marlborough, who had gone to Althorpe, was summoned to the sick bed of his youthful master, but arrived too late.

The bereaved mother watched beside her dying boy to the end, hoping against hope; and when nothing remained but his lifeless body, she arose, and with an expression of sad resignation on her countenance, quietly left the room. Then her thoughts were directed towards the father she had wronged, and she wrote him a letter filled with the most penitent expressions, and telling him that she looked upon her cruel loss as a blow from Heaven in punishment of her cruelty towards him. Retribution had come at last! [426]At that moment, when the object in whom all her hopes were centered lay cold in death, Princess Anne yearned for the sympathy of the parent who had ever been most kind and indulgent to her, and she immediately sent her letter to St. Germain by express.

Lord Marlborough forwarded the sad news to King William, but his majesty made no reply for three whole months. The reason for this neglect was because Anne had written to her father, and the king found it out, although it was managed, as she thought, very secretly. William had always shown so much affection for his nephew that his failing to send any message of condolence or sorrow was the more remarkable.

The little duke's remains lay in state in the suite of apartments he had occupied, and afterwards they were removed to Westminster, to be interred in Henry VII.'s Chapel. The English ambassador at the court of France was placed in a very embarrassing position, because his sovereign did not order him how to proceed with regard to the Duke of Gloucester's death. The fact is William was in a fit of temper, possibly caused by the sad event, and so cared not how he perplexed others. Besides, although he had loved the dead boy, he despised the parents, and paid no more respect to their feelings than if they had lost a favorite dog. At last, after the expiration of two months, he ordered a fortnight's mourning, which was very little. Three months after the death of the little duke, King William condescended to write, not to the afflicted parents, but to Lord Marlborough, and this is a copy of the remarkable missive:—

"I do not think it necessary to employ many words in expressing my surprise and grief at the death of the Duke of Gloucester. It is so great a loss to me, as well as to all England, that it pierces my heart with affliction."



[429]The same post carried a peremptory order that all the salaries of the duke's servants should be cut off from the day of his death.

A.D. 1701. Thus we see that the king's heart was not so pierced with affliction as to prevent his having an eye to economy. It was even suspected that it was the approach of pay-day that prompted him to write at all; but the Princess Anne was so shocked at the king's meanness that she resolved to pay the salaries of her dead boy's servants out of her own purse rather than send them off at a moment's notice. She returned to St. James's Palace towards the end of the year, bowed down with desolation and sorrow.

The death of the Duke of Gloucester was not much lamented in the political world, for his existence had been rather an obstacle to the designs of the various parties; but to his mother, aside from her deep sorrow, it proved an event of the utmost importance; for even in her own household her position was altered, and she was not treated with the same deference as before.

Lady Marlborough was the first person by whom the change was made apparent, though she of all others had most reason to be grateful to Princess Anne. She had gone with her husband to Althorpe, just a short time before the little duke's death, to further a scheme that they had made between them. King William's health was so poor that they had reason to believe it would not be long before Anne would replace him on the throne. When that should occur, it was argued that she would be assisted in the government by certain statesmen, who would shrink from any cooperation with them, so they planned a strong family alliance that would greatly strengthen their influence. They were aided by the sly politician, Sunderland, and by Lord Godolphin, whose only son had, during the previous year, [430]married their eldest daughter. When this marriage took place Princess Anne presented the bride with five thousand pounds, and gave a similar sum to Lady Marlborough's younger daughter, Anne Churchill, when she married Sunderland's son.

These two marriages formed the principal features in the Marlborough scheme for their own advancement when the proper time should come. For the purpose of doing away with formality when writing to her favorite, it had been early agreed that the princess should merely be addressed as Mrs. Morley, and Lady Marlborough as Mrs. Freeman, which brought them to the same level. Since her bereavement Princess Anne had become more humble, and Lady Marlborough more imperious. When the latter was absent she received three or four notes a day, some of which were signed "your poor, unfortunate, faithful Morley." But the indulgence and kindness of the princess had only spoiled the woman, who was so puffed up by prosperity as to render herself positively ridiculous. She even went so far as to avert her face and turn up her nose when she had any slight office to perform for her benefactress, as though there was something about her person that produced disgust. In course of time the princess began to notice what others had seen for a long while; but accident revealed to her one day the extent to which the ungrateful creature could go with her insults.

One afternoon when Princess Anne was at her toilet, she requested Abigail Hill to fetch her a pair of gloves from the table in the adjoining room. Miss Hill passed into the room designated, leaving the door open behind her. There sat Lady Marlborough reading a letter. Miss Hill soon discovered that she had, by mistake, put on her royal highness' gloves, and gently called her attention to the fact. "My goodness!" exclaimed Lady Marlborough, [431]"have I on anything that has touched the odious hands of that disagreeable woman? Take them away quickly," and she pulled off the gloves, which she threw violently to the ground. Miss Hill picked them up without a word, and left the room closing the door behind her. Lady Marlborough thus remained in ignorance that her disgraceful speech had been overheard; but Abigail Hill saw plainly that not a word of it had been lost on the princess, who never forgot or forgave the disgust manifested by the woman on whom she had lavished affection and favors. Fortunately, the princess had no other attendant besides the one she had despatched for the gloves, so the incident remained a secret for the time being. Lady Marlborough was made to feel on several occasions that she had seriously offended the princess, but was at a loss to know how or when. She could not ready have felt the disgust she expressed, because Princess Anne was renowned all over Europe for the beauty and delicacy of her hands and arms; but perhaps it was envy.

Princess Anne had not taken off mourning for her son when news arrived of the death of her father. This event did not cause her a great deal of sorrow, nor did she think fit to take the slightest notice of the request he made in his farewell letter to her, that when William should die she would make way for her brother on the throne.

King William was at Loo, in Holland, when James II.'s message of forgiveness was delivered to him, and he was so impressed by it that he sat in moody silence the entire day. That was his way of showing that he was painfully affected; but it did not remove the ill-feeling he felt towards the dead king for refusing to permit him to adopt his son,—a request he had made after the death of the Duke of Gloucester. Neither did it prevent his issuing a [432]bill accusing the young Prince of Wales, a boy of twelve, of high treason. But he put on mourning for his uncle, and ordered his footmen and coaches to appear in black. All the nobles and the court of England imitated him, and mourning became the fashion.

His majesty returned to England, as usual, in the autumn, and left the Earl of Marlborough in command of his military forces in Holland, feeling certain, as he said, that the talents of that general would enable him to continue in his stead should his death occur. And it did not seem far off, for William had been seriously ill, the effects of which had so reduced his already enfeebled frame that all who saw him knew he was not long for this world. Nevertheless, he busied himself with preparations for involving England in a war with France, the object being to divide Spain into three parts, to be claimed by Austria, Holland, and England. This was to prevent Louis XIV. from becoming too powerful by his influence over his grandson, who was heir to the Spanish throne.

It was no other than John Fenwick's sorrel pony that brought William's warlike projects to a close. And this is how he did it: His majesty was fond of the pretty animal, and rode on him daily while superintending the excavation of a canal in Hampden Court grounds. It was on the twenty-first of January that he was riding about as usual, when suddenly the pony stuck one foot in a mole hill and fell, throwing his majesty over on his right shoulder, and breaking his collar bone. Some workmen assisted him to rise, and carried him to the palace, where the broken bone was soon set. The accident might not have proved serious had not William, with his usual obstinacy, insisted on driving to Kensington that night. The jolting of the carriage displaced the fractured bone, and he arrived in a state of exhaustion and suffering. The opera-



tion [435]had to be repeated, but it was several days before the patient could move. Even then his mind was filled with revenge, for he sent a message to parliament urging them to lose no time in passing the charge of high treason against little James Stuart, that had been under consideration since the preceding January. The very last act of this mighty monarch was the signing of this bill, to which he affixed his stamp a few hours before his death.

On the first of March the royal sufferer was seized with cramps, but improved sufficiently to be able to walk in the gallery of Kensington Palace a few days later. Feeling fatigued from the exercise, he threw himself on a lounge and fell asleep in front of an open window. Two hours later he awoke with a chill, the precursor of death. Both the Prince and Princess of Denmark made repeated efforts to see the dying king, but to the very end he framed his lips into an emphatic "no!" every time the request was made. No one was admitted to the sick-room besides physicians and nurses, excepting the old favorites Bentinck, and Keppel, Earl of Albemarle. The latter arrived from a mission to Holland just before the king lost his speech, and gave his royal master information of the progress of his preparations for the commencement of war in the Low Countries. For the first time the dying warrior listened to such details with cold indifference, and at their close merely said: "I draw towards my end." Then handing Keppel the keys of his writing-desk, he bade that favorite take possession of the twenty thousand guineas it contained, and directed him to destroy all the letters enclosed in a certain cabinet.

The next morning, when Bentinck entered the room, the king was speechless but conscious. He took his old friend's hand and pressed it to his heart for several minutes, [436]and then expired. After his death a bracelet of Queen Mary's hair, tied with black ribbon, was found on his left arm.

William III. was fifty-one years old, and had reigned thirteen years. [437]


Bishop Burnet had watched at Kensington with a host of other clergymen and lords for the king's last gasp, and then hastened to St. James's Palace to be the first to prostrate himself before the new queen. But he was disappointed; for the Earl of Essex, lord of the bedchamber, whose duty it really was to communicate the news, had forestalled him. Burnet had never been popular with Anne, and on her accession he was treated with marked indifference, and turned out of his lodgings at court.

A.D. 1702. All was business and bustle on that Sunday that witnessed the death of William III. The queen was receiving the crowd of politicians that filled her antechamber, anxious for a private audience before her recognition by the privy council took place.

Among others, the queen's old uncle, the Earl of Clarendon, sent in his name and requested "admittance to his niece."

Her majesty's reply was, "That if he was prepared to take the oath of allegiance to her as sovereign she was willing to receive him."

Queen Anne answered thus because she remembered the nature of her uncle's former conversations with her, and knew that he had come to urge her to make way for her brother, the Prince of Wales. His reply confirmed this, for he said:

"No, I come to talk to my niece; I shall take [438]no other oath than I have taken." He remained true to this decision to the day of his death.

But Queen Anne had another uncle, who was not quite so loyal to King James's son; this was Lord Rochester, who had been one of Queen Mary's ministers of state, and shared with Anne the government of her kingdom likewise.

Both houses of parliament met and made speeches suitable to the occasion, then presented addresses of congratulation to the queen on her accession. She received them with much grace and dignity; and although she did not say much, everybody was impressed by the remarkable sweetness of her voice, which possessed a magic charm.

A general mourning was ordered by the privy council for the deceased king; but as Queen Anne was already wearing black for her father, she chose purple to distinguish this occasion, and appeared in that color the day after William III. died.

On the eleventh of March Queen Anne went in solemn state, attended by Lady Marlborough and two other ladies, to the House of Lords. She ascended the throne in her royal robes, and made an address that had been prepared by her ministers, concluding with a promise to do all in her power for the happiness and prosperity of England. Lord Marlborough carried the sword of state before her royal highness, who, at the close of the session, returned with Prince George to St. James's Palace.

The Scotch council was summoned, and Anne was proclaimed by Lord Lyon, king-at-arms, as Anne I. Queen of Scotland. Then her majesty appointed April 23 for her coronation; and parliament voted her the same revenue that had been granted to King William.

There were those who were delighted at the accession of Queen Anne; but the Dutch colony at Kensington were [439]not of the number. The body of King William had been embalmed and removed to the prince's chamber at Westminster, where it lay in state; and the queen, with her husband, immediately took possession of the royal apartments at Kensington. There was something repulsive in this, though the room in which the king had breathed his last remained undisturbed for many years.

After a great deal of discussion it was decided that the interment of King William's body should take place privately, and April 12, at midnight, was the time appointed.

The procession started from Kensington, and was headed by an open chariot with the customary wax effigy seated as though the coffin had been beneath; but it was only placed there when the procession reached Westminster.

During the funeral service the body was deposited in Henry VIII.'s Chapel, and afterwards it was interred in the same vault with Queen Mary II.

Among her appointments, Queen Anne made the Duke of Devonshire lord-steward of her household; the Earl of Jersey, lord-chamberlain; Sir Edward Seymour, comptroller; and Peregrine Bertie, vice-chamberlain. Prince George was appointed to the high office of commander-in-chief of all the forces, both by sea and land. Lord Go-dolphin requested that her majesty would be pleased to reinstate Dr. Radcliffe; but she replied, "No! Radcliffe shall never send me word again when I am ill that my ailments are only vapors." Lady Marlborough used her influence to have Bentinck expelled from his office as keeper of the park at Windsor, with the least possible delay; for he had never been friendly to either herself or the queen, and such a chance for revenge could scarcely be overlooked.

The public mind was soon occupied with the approaching coronation. Prince George was to take no part in it as [440]sovereign, but in the previous reign he had been created Duke of Cumberland,—a title that placed him at the head of the list of peers, and gave him precedence of them all.

At eleven o'clock on coronation morning the queen was carried in her sedan chair from St. James's to Westminster Hall, where she rested in a private room while the heralds marshalled the several classes of nobility according to their rank. Prince George of Denmark was preceded by the Archbishop of Canterbury, and the lord keeper of the Great Seal. He walked just in front of the queen with her state attendants, garter-king-at-arms, the lord mayor, and the high steward of England. The queen wore on her head a gold band set with costly gems, and her train was borne by the Duchess of Somerset, assisted by four young ladies of the bed-chamber, and the lord chamberlain. But this train must in some way have been made to hang from her majesty's chair, for she was suffering so much from gout in her feet that she could not walk in the procession. These attendants and train-bearers conducted her from the waiting-room to the grand hall, where she was placed beneath the canopy near the table, on which were spread the regalia. Lord Carlisle, the Duke of Devonshire, and the lord high-constable stood in readiness to distribute the various articles on the table to the persons appointed to carry them whenever her majesty should give the order. As soon as this, part of the ceremony was performed, the procession moved on to the Abbey, the path all the way to the royal platform in the church being covered with blue cloth, and strewn with evergreens and flowers. A company of guards lined the walk, consequently the cloth was not tom to bits to be distributed among the rabble, as had been the case at previous coronations. From Westminster Hall to the Abbey the train-bearers were, as before, the Duchess of Somerset,—a personal friend to the queen, and wife of [441]the nearest relative of the blood royal then in England,—Lady Elizabeth Seymour, Lady Mary Hyde, and Lady Mary Pierrepoint, then a girl of thirteen, who later was known in the literary world as Lady Mary Wortley Montague. The queen was escorted by Lord Jersey, supported by the Bishops of Durham and Exeter, and guarded by the late king's favorite, Keppel, Earl of Albemarle, who was still retained as captain of the royal guard. He was the only member of King William's Dutch colony who had ever shown civility to the queen, and she showed her gratitude by continuing him in office. The coronation ceremony was conducted on the same plan as all the others we have recorded, therefore it is unnecessary to repeat the details. The ring used on this occasion was a superb ruby, on which was engraved the cross of St. George. It was placed on the fourth finger of her majesty's right hand. The ceremony concluded with the peers, archbishops, and prelates, headed by the Duke of Cumberland, paying homage to the queen. This was done by kissing her left cheek, and touching her crown while her pardon was read, and medals of silver and gold were distributed among the people. A grand anthem by the choir, accompanied by instrumental music, followed; then the trumpets sounded, and all the people shouted, "God save Queen Anne! Long live Queen Anne! May the queen live forever!"

At the banquet in the evening Prince George of Denmark sat at her majesty's left hand, and care was taken that tables should be provided for members of the house of commons, who had complained of being neglected at the coronation banquet of William and Mary. On the whole, the ceremony was eminently satisfactory from beginning to end, even to the thieves who stole all the plate used at her majesty's table in Westminster Hall, as well as the finest of the table linen. Shortly after her coronation Queen Anne [442]knighted Simon Harcourt, and appointed him solicitor-general; and her uncle, Lord Rochester, was chosen for her prime minister. It was with the assistance and advice of this uncle that Queen Anne performed an act of benevolence that has made her name venerated in the Church of England ever since. Certain sums of money that she had a right to claim for every office she conferred in the church, she applied, instead, towards a fund for increasing the salaries of some of the inferior members of the clergy who were so poorly paid that they were scarcely able to live. Originally, the money so claimed had been for the support of crusades, but later it went to the crown, and the clergy were taxed for their whole profit of the first year, and one-tenth of the annual gain forever after. So relieved of this tax, and with their salaries increased besides, the clergy of the Church of England had reason to be grateful to their sovereign. This fund received the name of "Queen Anne's bounty," which it has borne to the present day.

Throughout Queen Anne's reign there were so many contests that it will be necessary sometimes to mention the two parties between whom they occurred, though as little as possible will be said on the subject of politics, and none of the dry details and intricacies of the various projects shall be recounted. The two powerful parties to which we refer were called Whigs and Tories, and probably no one will object to knowing how they were distinguished.

In the reign of Queen Anne the policy of the Whigs was to keep up a perpetual war against France, in order to prevent the son of James II. from claiming his right to the throne of England. They were opposed to the Church of Rome and equally so to the reformed Catholic or "High Church" of England. Though the queen was the acknowledged head of the church, they desired that her power to fill vacancies should be bestowed on the prime minister.

[443]The Tories, on the other hand, supported the sovereign in her right to appoint church dignitaries, and were opposed to the so-called "Low Church" party. They were generally considered Jacobites, and would gladly have been such if the Prince of Wales had not been a Roman Catholic.

Now that we have shown the distinction between these two parties, any future reference to them will be clearly understood.

With Queen Anne fairly established on the throne, Lady Marlborough was at the very height of her glory, because she still retained unbounded influence over her majesty, and had a voice in every appointment. She even gave herself credit for many praiseworthy acts of the queen's, whether she deserved it or no. For example, she assured her friends that the command issued by the queen forbidding the sale of places in the royal household was really her own order, though it was probably no such thing. This was a French custom that had been introduced into England with the Restoration, whereby places were purchased of the former possessor without granting the sovereign any choice in the matter whatever. A man sold his position to the highest bidder, and felt not the slightest shame at pocketing the proceeds, nor was any privacy observed in the proceeding. It was a very injurious practice, and by no means insured good servants, so whether its abolition was due to the queen or Lady Marlborough, or both, it was certainly wise.

Shortly after Queen Anne's accession her husband, Prince George, was attacked with asthma, which had such a bad effect on him that change of air was recommended, and their majesties started on a tour through the west of England. Bristol was one of their stopping-places, and while there Prince George started out one morning, [444]incognito, with an officer for companion, to view the sights. After walking about for an hour or so, the prince went on the Exchange, and remained there until all the merchants had left excepting one John Duddlestone, a corset-maker. This good man stood off and stared at the prince, and then hesitatingly approached, and with a shy, awkward manner, asked: "Are you, sir, the husband of our Queen Anne, as folks say you are?"

"Such is, indeed, the fact," replied the prince. "Then," continued John Duddlestone, "I have seen with great concern that none of the chief merchants on 'Change have invited your highness home; but it is not for want of love or loyalty: it is merely because they are afraid to presume to address so great a man. But I think that the shame to Bristol would be great indeed if the husband of her majesty the queen were obliged, for want of hospitality, to dine at an inn; I therefore beg your royal highness, humble though I am, to accompany me home to dinner and bring your soldier-officer along. I can offer your highness a good piece of roast beef, a plum-pudding, and some ale of my wife's own brewing, if that be good enough."

Prince George was charmed with this original style of invitation, and accepted it with gratitude, though his dinner had been ordered at the White Lion. Arriving at his house in Corn street, worthy John Duddlestone called up from the foot of the stairs, "Wife, wife! put on a clean apron and come down, for the queen's husband and a soldier-gentleman have come to dine with us."

Dame Duddlestone soon appeared in a clean, blue check apron, neat calico frock, and snowy cap, curtseying and smiling as she entered the room, her full face all aglow with the excitement occasioned by the honor of such visitors. Her table was soon arranged, and the prince did ample justice to the meal, well knowing that he could not



[447]please his host and hostess better than by eating heartily of what they set before him.

"Do you ever go up to London?" he asked in the course of the dinner.

"Oh, yes," answered the host; "I sometimes go there to buy whalebones for the corsets I manufacture."

When the prince took his leave he gave John Duddlestone a card, and told him "the next time he went to London to take his wife along, and to be sure to bring her to court," adding "that if he would present that card at Windsor Castle it would insure his admission."

Sure enough, when, a few weeks later, a supply of whalebone was needed, John actually took his good wife behind him on a pack-horse, and journeyed to London. Armed with the prince's card, he presented himself at Windsor Castle, was received by Prince George, and with his wife clinging to his arm, introduced into the presence of Queen Anne. Only a few words were necessary to recall to her majesty the circumstance Prince George had related on his return from Bristol. She cordially thanked the good-hearted couple for their hospitality to her husband, and, in return, invited them to dine with her, adding that the court-dresses which were required for the occasion, would be furnished by the officers of her household; but the visitors were required to choose their own material. Both selected purple velvet. The suits were accordingly made, and worn at the royal dinner party, when the queen presented the Duddlestone pair "as the most loyal persons in the whole city of Bristol."

After dinner her majesty surprised John Duddlestone by requesting him to kneel down before her. He obeyed, when taking a sword and laying it gently on his head, she said: "Stand up, Sir John."

Having knighted him, Queen Anne offered him a government [448]position, or a sum of money, whichever he preferred, but he refused both, saying: "Wife and I want nothing, and we have fifty pounds of our savings out at interest, besides, judging from the number of people about your majesty's house, your expenses must be heavy enough." This honest reply pleased the queen so much that she presented the newly-constituted Lady Duddlestone with the gold watch that hung at her side. This mark of royal favor so delighted the good dame that whenever she appeared in the streets of her native town afterwards the watch was sure to be seen hanging from her blue apron-string.

Although Queen Anne could not forget nor forgive the insulting remarks about herself that she had heard from the lips of Lady Marlborough, she did not find it easy to steel her heart against a woman whom she had loved for thirty years. There is no doubt that she had fully determined to part with both her and her husband, but meanwhile intended that the favorite should observe no change. The dearly-beloved "Mrs. Freeman" should have all the advantages her ambition and avarice had sought, and after both she and her husband had obtained all they desired of wealth and title they should be dismissed.

The queen went to St. James's Palace in time to open parliament, leaving Lady Marlborough at Windsor, because she did not desire her attendance at the grand state visit to the city. But her majesty wrote "Dear Mrs. Freeman" in the most caressing terms, and in one of her letters she said: "It is very sad for your poor, unfortunate, faithful Morley to think that she has so very little in her power to show you how sensible she is of all Lord Marlborough's kindness, especially when he deserves all that a rich crown can give; but since there is nothing else at this time, I hope you will give me leave, as soon as he comes, to make him a duke." [449]Lady Marlborough was not so pleased at this proposition as Queen Anne supposed she would be; the dukedom was all very fine, but no provision for the support of the title was mentioned, and the Marlboroughs were by no means rich. The letter dropped from the lady's hand as though she had read news of a death, but the lord was more grateful; for the new distinction increased the respect that the German princes in Flanders entertained for him, and, as he was commander-in-chief of the allied forces, it was important that he should be esteemed. He had not yet achieved the military glory that has made him one of the heroes of history.

Some discussion had been going on between Lady Marlborough and the queen about the creating of four new peers, because the ministry had resolved that they should be Tories, and Lady Marlborough objected. At last, by way of compromise, the queen consented to add Mr. Hervey to the number; but, as he was a Whig, the newly-made nobles refused to have their names associated with his, and so the poor queen was in a dilemma. She wrote the haughty favorite a most humble letter, in which she said: "I cannot help being extremely concerned that you are so partial to the Whigs, because I would not have you and your poor, unfortunate, faithful Morley differ in opinion in the least thing."

There was to be a grand dinner on Lord Mayor's day, which the Queen and Prince George were to attend, so for the encouragement of her Tory partizans, her majesty preferred that her favorite should not appear at her side on that occasion; she therefore concluded the letter we have referred to above, with this sentence: "Since you have staid so long at Windsor, I wish now for your own sake that you would stay until after Lord Mayor's day; for if you are in town you can't avoid going to the show, and [450]being in the country is a just excuse, and, I think, one would be glad of any way to avoid so troublesome a business. I am at this time in great haste, and therefore can say no more to my dear, dear Mrs. Freeman, but that I am most passionately hers."

The queen had another reason for desiring Lady Marlborough's absence. It was this: The Duke of Ormond and Sir George Rooke had won a grand victory at Vigo, and so the Tory party were greatly elated. This enraged Lady Marlborough to such a degree that there was no telling how far she might go in giving expression to her displeasure, and she was safer at a little distance.

Lord Marlborough returned from the continent in November, after having gained several victories and captured some towns in Flanders. The queen was so pleased with his success that she showed herself a little too eager to reward him; therefore when her majesty sent a message to the house of commons declaring her intention to create Lord Marlborough a duke, and requesting that a pension of five thousand pounds per annum might be secured to him and his heirs, it was regarded with disfavor. After some warm debate, it was decided "that Lord Marlborough's services, although considerable, had been sufficiently rewarded;" so, although the title was granted, the revenue was refused. The consequence was that Lady Marlborough hated the Tories worse than ever, although ten years before she had belonged to their party.

With the hope of soothing the newly-made duchess, her majesty wrote: "I cannot be satisfied with myself without doing something towards making up what has been so maliciously hindered in parliament, and therefore, I desire, my dear Mrs. Freeman and her husband to be so kind as to accept of two thousand pounds a year out of my private purse instead of the five, and this can excite no envy, for nobody need know it." [451]The angry duchess refused to be pacified, and rejected the queen's offer with scorn. But this was her regular plan of action to avoid appearing under obligations to her majesty; she always refused an offer the first time it was made, but never failed to claim it later. So it was in this case, for she not only pocketed the two thousand pounds per annum when she had charge of the queen's privy purse, but demanded, besides, portions for her daughters to the amount of thirty thousand pounds. Queen Anne fell completely in the power of the designing duchess, who constantly abused the Tories to her majesty, and accused her of being their accomplice. More than half of "the crowned slave's" time was spent in the degrading occupation of soothing the domestic tyrant, who exacted the most servile attentions, and complained, like a spoiled child, if she did not get everything she wanted, though this she generally managed, by hook or by crook.

A.D. 1703. In the month of December the fleet of Charles of Austria, who was on his way to take possession of the throne of Spain, appeared off the west coast of England. The Duke of Somerset was immediately despatched to Portsmouth to receive the royal stranger, and conduct him to Windsor, where the queen had gone on purpose to entertain him. But he was first invited to rest while at the duke's residence on the coast of Petworth, and there he was met by the prince-consort, who had with great difficulty, and three or four upsets of his carriage, made the journey across the bad roads.

The whole party arrived at Windsor at night, and were received by torchlight. Three noblemen awaited the King of Spain as he alighted from his coach, and the Earl of Jersey led him up the stairs, at the head of which he was met by Queen Anne, and conducted to her bed-chamber according to the etiquette of the times. An hour later a [452]state supper was served, when the royal guest was placed at the queen's right hand, while Prince George sat on her left. At the conclusion of the feast a formal procession conducted King Charles to his sleeping apartment, where his own attendants awaited him.

The next day Queen Anne returned the call of her guest, who, having been previously informed of her intention, met her at his drawing-room door with a profusion of compliments, protesting against the trouble-she took in coming to him. However, she was not to be outdone in politeness, so persisted in entering his room, where she spent about fifteen minutes. Then, at a signal from one of the courtiers, King Charles rose and conducted her majesty to a grand state dinner. During the progress of the meal the court was entertained by a vocal and instrumental concert. Dinner was served at three, and at its conclusion everybody played cards, basset being the favorite game, until supper was announced, which closed the hospitalities of the day.

Her majesty had, during the interval between dinner and supper, presented several ladies of the highest rank to the king, and he had saluted each with a kiss, which was the privilege of his station. But a grand act of courtesy was reserved for the royal favorites, the Duke and the Duchess of Marlborough. To the former, King Charles presented his sword, saying at the same time, "that he had nothing worthier of his acceptance, for he was a poor prince, who had little more than his sword and his mantle." After supper he prevailed on the duchess to give him the napkin which it was her duty to present to the queen, and he held it while her majesty washed her hands. On returning it to the Duchess of Marlborough, the king placed a superb diamond ring on her finger. He then gave his hand to the queen, and led her to her bed- [453]chamber, where he took formal leave, and expressed his intention to depart early the next morning. Prince George meant to escort the royal guest back to his ship at Portsmouth, but as he was far from well the Duke of Somerset was appointed to perform that office in his stead; and the Admiral, Sir George Rooke, was ordered to provide the proper number of ships to escort him to Spain.

A.D. 1704. The queen's birthday this year fell on Sunday. She received the usual compliments, and held a splendid reception on the following day, after which Dry-den's play, entitled "All for Love, or Anthony and Cleopatra," was performed before her majesty and the whole court. This was succeeded on the next evening by the tragedy of Hamlet, Prince of Denmark, in honor of Prince George. There were various other entertainments during the week; and we must not omit to say that notices of them were given in the daily papers, of which there were several in this reign.

So much dissension arose in parliament, chiefly on account of church matters, that some of the Tories became disgusted and withdrew from office. The most important of these were the queen's uncle, Lord Rochester, the Duke of Buckingham, and Lord Dartmouth. This gave the Whig party the upper hand, and the Duchess of Marlborough thoroughly controlled and led them. Prince George was a Whig at heart, though he managed to keep this fact secret; however, the duchess knew it perfectly well, and rejoiced at it.

Now we must take a look at Queen Anne to see what sort of a ruler she made, for thus far we have touched lightly on this important matter, or given the Duchess of Marlborough the precedence. As far as personal affection goes, this queen was the most popular one who had occupied the English throne; the lower classes always [454]called her "our good Queen Anne," and do so to this very day.


It is to be accounted for in this way: In the first place, her parents were both English, and she herself was in every way like a middle-class Englishwoman, because of her very limited education. She was a comfortable sort of a matron, the last of the Stuarts, and by no means disposed to govern arbitrarily. Then she was, as we have seen, exceedingly generous to the church, and her reign witnessed a series-of continental victories. No wonder that the populace called her "good Queen Anne." Strange to say, although her majesty was never known to read a book, and passed a large part of her time at card-playing, poetry and science awakened into new life in her reign, and many of the writers delighted to sound her praises. She probably did not appreciate their work, but she patronized men of letters, it may be for love of approbation. [455]The number of learned men of Queer. Anne's reign exceeded that of Elizabeth, and represented every branch of art, science, and literature. It included no Shakespeare, it is true; but there were Newton, Wren, Locke, Hogarth, Congreve, Colley, Cibber, Pope, Swift, Gay, Addison, Steele, and a host of others. We must not omit to mention Defoe, because every child will connect his name with that delightful romance, "Robinson Crusoe." It was on account of the existence of such a bevy of luminaries that Queen Anne's reign was entitled the Augustan age of England.

That reign witnessed the beginning of periodical papers, for there were three, the "Tattler," "Spectator," and "Guardian," edited by Addison and Steele.

The "Tattler" contained accounts of the political events of the day, and was placed on her majesty's breakfast-table, with the hope that she would occasionally read it, but she is not supposed ever to have done so. The "Ladies' Diary, or Women's Almanack" was another of the periodicals published in Queen Anne's reign, that have since become so numerous. It began by containing articles that are of most interest to women in general, but is now a mathematical periodical, which women are not likely to care for.

We have mentioned the continental victories that distinguished this reign. The most splendid of them all was the battle of Blenheim, news of which was brought to Windsor Castle in August by Colonel Parkes, aid-de-camp to his grace, the Duke of Marlborough. This glorious victory was celebrated with unusual splendor.

What shall we say of the hero of the great victory thus celebrated? Perhaps Thackeray has given the best description. He says: "Before the greatest obstacle or the most trival ceremony; before a hundred thousand men [456]drawn in battalia, or a peasant slaughtered at the door of his burning hovel; before a carouse of German lords, or a monarch's court, or a cottage table where his plans were laid, or an enemy's battery vomiting flame and death, and strewing corpses round about him,—he was always cold, calm, resolute, like fate. He performed a treason or a court-bow; he told a falsehood as black as Styx as easily as he paid a compliment or spoke about the weather. He was as calm at the mouth of the cannon as at the door of a drawing-room. He would cringe to a shoe-black or he would flatter a minister or a monarch; be haughty, be humble, threaten, repent, weep, grasp your hand or stab you whenever he saw occasion. But yet those of the army who knew him best, and had suffered most from him, admired him most of all, and had perfect confidence in him as the first captain of the world."

After the Blenheim victory the enthusiasm for the duke was very great; even those who hated him and those whom he had cheated were ready to greet him with frantic cheers.

The queen informed the house of commons that she desired to present the palace and grounds of Woodstock to the great hero and his heirs forever, and the act was passed a few weeks later. Her majesty ordered a portrait in miniature to be painted of the duke, which was sur-rounded by brilliants valued at eight thousand pounds, and the picture itself was covered with a diamond instead of glass. This magnificent gift was presented to the Duchess of Marlborough as a souvenir of the victory of Blenheim.

It need scarcely be said that while her husband stood so high in the royal favor, the influence of the Duchess of Marlborough remained unabated, and she compelled the queen to appoint all her officers of government from the [457]Whig ranks. When her majesty hesitated, the upstart tyrant would vulgarly exclaim: "Lord, madam! it must be so!" Thus she secured for her friend, William Cowper, the high post of keeper of the Great Seal. The privilege of disposing of the church livings had belonged to the sovereign, but Lord Keeper Cowper now claimed it, and subsequently it was taken out of the hands of the crown entirely. The Church of England was never in greater danger of destruction than during Queen Anne's reign, because most of the dignitaries had been connected with some species of dissent. The prince consort was a Dissenter; but, worst of all, the violent duchess, her majesty's favorite and ruler, headed a strong band of free-thinkers, who hated the church.

A.D. 1705. In April her majesty, accompanied by her husband, made an excursion to Cambridge. She was received by the Duke of Somerset, who was then chancellor of the university, and attended an exhibition, where she distributed honorary degrees among the noblemen and gentlemen of her court. But the most memorable of Queen Anne's actions connected with this visit was the bestowing of knighthood on Dr. Isaac Newton at Trinity College. After holding a grand reception, dining at Trinity Hall, and attending divine service at the beautiful chapel of King's College, the royal party returned to Newmarket, where her majesty made a long sojourn.

A.D. 1706. Another great victory was won at Ramilies by the Duke of Marlborough, and another splendid thanksgiving procession took place at St. Paul's to celebrate it. At this period all the great offices of state were in the hands of the Marlborough family. The last of the appointments was the result of a serious contest between her majesty and the duchess, in which the latter came off victorious, as usual. This was the nomination of her son- [458]in-law, Lord Sunderland, to the important office of secretary of state. When the queen yielded this point, the commander-in-chief and the lord treasurer were, one a son-in-law, the other father of a son-in-law of this ambitious couple. Their connections filled lucrative posts, besides, their daughters were ladies of the bed-chamber, and the mother herself, as mistress of the robes and groom of the stole, governed all the officials and the queen into the bargain. Never was this creature more insolent than when such was the state of affairs. She had contrived, by fair means or by foul, to appropriate the enormous income of ninety thousand pounds of the public funds, and the poor queen was miserable on account of what she had been made to suffer at the hands of the woman who was indebted to her for all she had, and for all she was. When she could no longer fail to perceive that the affection of her royal mistress had become estranged, the duchess began to inquire what new favorite had interposed to create ill feeling; for it was not in the nature of this woman to blame herself for anything.

She could not fix upon any one until the regular season for the distribution of the queen's cast-off clothing came around; then Abigail Hill, her cousin, excited her suspicion. Although the duchess pretended to act with perfect justice in dividing the old gowns, mantles, and head-dresses among the bed-chamber women and dressers of her majesty, they all declared that she invariably kept the best of them for herself. Seeing that Abigail Hill fared badly in the distribution, the queen made her some liberal presents, as well as Mrs. Danvers, whose dismissal the jealous duchess had frequently urged. But this liberality only increased the squabble over the old clothes, and the duchess declared that they were all hers by right.

Once when this Mrs. Danvers, one of the bed-chamber [459]women, was so ill that she believed herself to be dying, she sent for the Duchess of Marlborough, and implored her to transfer her position with the queen to her daughter, who would be entirely unprotected after her death. The duchess declared her inability to do so, because of her being on bad terms with her majesty. Finding that to be the case, the sick woman told a long story about Abigail Hill's wickedness and general bad behavior, and wound up her narrative by informing her visitor that said Abigail had long been her secret enemy.

Queen Anne may have been desirous of dispensing charities, but the Duchess of Marlborough held the purse-strings so tightly that she was unable to do so. When she demanded a small sum of money, that tyrant would frequently tell her that "it was not fit to squander away money while so heavy a war lasted," though at that very time vast sums of the public funds were annually supplied for the building of the duke's house at Woodstock. A touching case of distress came under her majesty's notice in the sad fate of Sir Andrew Foster, a gentleman who had spent most of his life in the service of James II., and who had been ruined by his adherence to that sovereign. He died of starvation, in a miserable hut just outside of London, and Queen Anne was so shocked when she heard it that she determined, as it was too late to relieve the unfortunate Jacobite, he should at least be decently buried. For this object she was forced to borrow twenty guineas of Lady Fretchville, for she could not command so large a sum herself; and yet the Marlboroughs were then drawing sixty-four thousand pounds per annum from the public purse. Later the sum reached ninety-four thousand pounds.

A.D. 1707. The queen carried one extremely important point in violent opposition to the powerful duchess, and that was the union between Scotland and England. [460]This measure was passed in both countries, signed and ratified in great state in the presence of the Scottish commissioners, the English ministers, and both houses of parliament. When Queen Anne signed this important ratification she said, "The union with Scotland is the happiness of my reign."

On the same day, April 24, her majesty dissolved the English house of commons, and summoned the first united parliament of Great Britain to meet the following October. The signing of the union was then celebrated by a grand national festival, and a few days later her majesty went in solemn procession to St. Paul's Cathedral to return thanks for the successful completion of this matter.

But it must not be supposed that the union was brought into working order without a struggle, for in the course of a few weeks Scotland was almost in a state of open rebellion. It was the queen's policy to extend mildness and mercy to all offenders, which was a great deal more effective than shedding blood on the scaffold; for in a very little while she was universally acknowledged as sovereign of both England and Scotland.

Sixteen Scottish noblemen represented their country in parliament, and there was a good deal of jealousy aroused on account of favors shown them by her majesty. At her accession she had declared, "That her heart was entirely English," and this sentence was inscribed on some of her medals, so when she showed partiality to the Scotch an English satirist wrote:—

"The queen has lately lost a part

Of her 'entirely English heart,'

For want of which by way of botch

She pieced it up again with Scotch."

For some reason, not necessary for us to inquire into, the Duke of Hamilton was denied a seat in parliament; [461]and in order to console him for the injury, Queen Anne consented to stand godmother in person to his third son. She gave the child her own name, and from his infancy he was called "Lord Anne." Some years later Lord Anne Hamilton was celebrated as a valiant soldier.

To return to the palace dissensions. The Duchess of Marlborough became at last furiously jealous of Abigail Hill, and probably opposed her marriage, otherwise it would not have been managed so secretly as it was. She was engaged to Samuel Masham, a page to the queen, and it seems a very undignified proceeding for her majesty to have consented to witness a secret marriage, in a remote part of her palace, between two people who were not under obligations of duty to any one unless it was herself. But such was really the arrangement, and only proves that all parties stood in mortal terror of the duchess's wrath. How long this union would have remained secret it is impossible to tell, had not the queen thought proper to dower the bride from her own private purse, and as soon as she demanded the sum she chose to present, of course the watchful duchess set to work to find out to what purpose it was to be put. She had began to suspect that there was a mystery, and it did not take her more than a week to ferret it out. No sooner were her spies set on the right track than they made another discovery that was forthwith reported to the duchess with an accuracy and assiduity worthy of a better cause. It was this: "That Mrs. Masham spent about two hours every day with the queen in private, while the prince, who was a confirmed invalid, took his afternoon nap."

Now did the duchess see, at last, who had forestalled her in her devoted "Mrs. Morley's" good graces; she only awaited a favorable opportunity to unbottle the phials of her wrath, and pour them on the heads of both the offenders. [462]The enormity of the crime shocked her. "I was struck with astonishment at such an instance of ingratitude," she wrote her husband, "and should not have believed it had there been any room for doubt."

In reply to her very exaggerated statement of a trivial affair, the duke wrote some good advice. His letter was sent from Meldest, in South Germany, and he said: "The wisest thing is to have to do with as few people as possible. If you are sure Mrs. Masham speaks of business to the queen, I should think you might, with some caution, tell her of it, which would do good, for she certainly must be grateful, and will mind what you say."

The duchess did not heed this advice of her clear-headed husband, but kept herself up to a pitch of excitement at what she called the barbarity, ingratitude, and wickedness of the queen. She accused her, too, of intrigue, though why the conversations she held with one of her attendants at the bedside of her declining husband should be so called it is difficult to understand. Her majesty treated Abigail Masham with confidence and consideration, because she assisted in the care of the prince-consort, who suffered from fearful attacks of asthma, and it was this attendant's duty to sleep at night on a pallet in the ante-chamber of her majesty's bed-room, within call.

Not long after the duchess discovered the marriage, when she was alone with the queen one day, she took her to task for having kept it secret, and told her that it plainly showed a change in her majesty's feeling towards her. The queen replied, "That it was not she who was changed, but the duchess," and added, "I believe I have begged Masham a hundred times to tell you of her marriage, but she would not."

This confession convinced the angry duchess that she had been a subject of discussion, and she became more indignant [463]than ever to think that so humble a person as her cousin Abigail should presume to speak with her majesty about so high and mighty a creature as herself. She determined to give the young woman a sound rating, but changed her mind, and wrote her an angry, undignified letter instead. But Sarah of Marlborough was not particularly well educated, and made as grave blunders as did her majesty in her attempts at letter-writing. Mrs. Masham, on the other hand, was a woman of talent, and wrote so well in reply as not only to astonish her correspondent, but to convince her that with the pen, at least, she was far her superior, and a person who could ably defend herself against any attack made on paper. Perhaps it would have been well had she explained the accident that caused the queen to overhear the duchess express her loathing and hatred of herself the day when she had put on the gloves by mistake. Abigail Masham might have written, "It was your shameful ingratitude, your offensive remarks, that changed her majesty's heart towards you;" but the secret was not hers, and there is no evidence of her having betrayed her royal mistress all the while she served her.

The queen's unwise consent to witness the secret marriage between Abigail Hill and Samuel Masham was all the proof the Duchess of Marlborough needed that she had been supplanted in the royal favor, and from that moment whatever change she observed she laid at the door of her successor. Some one has very wisely said of Mrs. Masham's turning her back on the duchess: "She was her near relative, and the defect of base ingratitude seems to run in her family. The duchess should have chosen her watch-dog on the queen, when she became too grand or too indolent to perform that needful office, from a better breed." [464]Previous to her majesty's removal to Windsor for the summer, a very odd circumstance occurred, which we will leave the duchess and her wrangling for awhile to relate. It is about Prince Matveof, ambassador of Peter the Great of Russia. Having been recalled to Russia, the prince attended the queen's levee for the purpose of taking formal leave of her. No sooner had he left the palace than he was arrested for debt on a writ of Mr. Morton, lace dealer of Covent Garden, and locked up in the bailiff's house. The noble Russian had fought desperately, without seeming to understand why he was seized, and wounded several of the bailiff's men quite seriously. The next day the bill of fifty pounds was paid, and the matter explained; but, as the prince had not had the slightest intention of defrauding the tradesman, he was justly indignant, and left England thoroughly disgusted. When he got home the czar resented the indignity offered to his ambassador by putting a stop to intercourse of trade, adding a threat of declaration of war. Queen Anne entered into an elaborate explanation, and assured the czar that the insult did not originate from any wrong intended by her or her ministers, but arose from the rudeness of a tradesman. But his Russian highness was by no means satisfied, so he wrote a very formidable document requesting "the high and mighty Princess Anne, Queen of Great Britain and Ireland, to return him, by bearer, the head of Morton, the lace dealer of Covent Garden, together with the heads and hands of any of his aids and abettors in the assault upon Prince Matveof that her majesty might have incarcerated in her dungeons and prisons."

The queen was perfectly amazed at this demand for the heads and hands of her subjects, and requested her secretary "to assure the czar that she had not the disposal of [465]any heads in her kingdom excepting those forfeited by the infraction of certain laws, which Mr. Morton and his assistants had not trespassed." The czar either could not, or would not, understand that Englishmen did not have their heads and hands chopped off at the caprice of the crown, and an angry correspondence was continued between the Russian and English governments for two years. At last a happy idea struck the queen, and she sent Mr. Whitworth, a gentleman who understood Russian customs, to say, "that although nothing had been acted against Prince Matveof but what the English law allowed, yet those laws were very bad and inhospitable ones, and that her majesty had had them repealed, so that his imperial highness's ambassadors could never again be subjected to such an injury."

This was no compliment, but a fact; for from that incident laws were caused to be made that protected ambassadors and their suites from arrest, which are in force to the present day. Such laws were sadly needed during Queen Anne's reign to prevent scenes of violence; for ambassadors took precedence according to the supposed rank of the sovereigns they represented. This being the case, the representatives of France and Spain, the two countries that were always at war, had a regular fight, aided by their retinues, at all public processions; they even went so far as to cut the traces of each other's coaches, lest the line should be broken and one dash in before the other. It is needless to say that the London populace immensely enjoyed such contests, and the "roughs" invariably gathered where the "mounseers," as they called them, were most likely to begin the fight. Sometimes they were quite serious, and more than one man lost his life while combating for position.



When her majesty opened parliament in the autumn she made the usual speech containing entreaties that goodwill and friendship might continue among all ranks of her subjects, but particularly with regard to the newly-made union. King William III. had said, "That he did not desire the experiment of a union with Scotland to be made in his reign, because he had not the good fortune to know what would satisfy a Scotchman." This would seem to apply equally to Queen Anne, for the Scotch were excessively dissatisfied and were already getting up petitions for dissolving the newly-made union, while the English turned up their noses at their northern neighbors, with whom they had no desire to be associated in parliament.

Public affairs did not seem to occupy Queen Anne's attention more than private ones, for the duchess kept her in a constant state of worry with her threats and her ill-temper; and there was scarcely day when she did not feel the necessity for sending a letter of explanation and apology to the tyrant for some imaginary offence, or some omitted honor, either on her own part or that of Mrs. Masham. There was at this time a matter of private interest under consideration between her majesty and the duchess. The latter had long before asked for a part of St. James Park, on which to build a palace for herself, but as the demand was an unreasonable one, the queen was [467]less generous and compliant than she had been on previous occasions. But the duchess had set her heart on the very spot she had designated, and get it she would at any cost. So she importuned the poor queen, month after month, and made her displeasure so seriously felt on account of the refusal, that at last she gained her point, and the present Marlborough House marks the spot.

The indignation of the London populace was justly aroused, because, when digging the foundation for her palace, the duchess had caused the removal of a fine oak tree which had sprung from an acorn that Charles II. had brought from Boscobel, and planted with his own hands in this pleasure garden of his queen, Catharine of Braganza.

The Marlborough family were jealous of Robert Harley, ex-speaker of the house of commons; and when his secretary, William Gregg, was arrested because he was discovered in traitorous correspondence with the French, they tried very hard to implicate Harley, too, but did not succeed. The secretary was hanged, and there was a hue and cry, because it was said that Queen Anne had sent the prisoner some comforts by her physician, Arbuthnot; but when the matter came to be sifted, it was found that such was her majesty's custom, because she was always unwilling to sentence any one to death; and when obliged to do so tried to alleviate their sufferings while they were in prison as much as possible.

A.D. 1708. Angry debates in the queen's cabinet council were of daily occurrence, and her presence was never a check on the coarseness and brutality of the officers. A scene of this sort took place one day when her majesty made an attempt to free herself from the chains of Marlborough and Lord Godolphin. She told her resolution to Mr. St. John, and sent a letter through him to the Duke of Marlborough, having first read it to him, and requested [468]him to tell what she had done about town. This was obeyed without reserve; and at the next council meeting, when Harley delivered a paper to her majesty containing some accounts of the war, the duke and lord-treasurer, Godolphin, abruptly left the room, whereupon the Duke of Somerset rose and told the queen in a rude tone, "That if she suffered that fellow to treat of affairs of the war, without the advice of the general, he could not serve her."

Of course her majesty was obliged to succumb to the storm she had brought about her head, and forthwith dismissed Harley. Then she was requested to get rid of Mrs. Masham, though the councillors did not make a direct attack on the bed-chamber woman for fear of ridicule. The Duchess of Marlborough demanded a private interview; but did not succeed in having her cousin dismissed, because her aid in nursing the prince-consort was so valuable that the queen strenuously refused to part with her. But the duchess was so friendly in her manners at this interview that she succeeded in exacting a solemn promise from "her dear Mrs. Morley" that if at any time it should become necessary for her to quit her service her places should be transferred to her daughters.

Another singular scene was enacted in the council when the "Pretender" invaded Scotland, and Sir George Byng was sent to intercept his progress. It was urged that if the young prince should be taken, he should forfeit his life; thereupon the queen wept, and the council broke up in confusion.

Although the "Pretender" was really captured, her majesty was spared the embarrassment of deciding as to his fate, for he was landed on French soil. Not so the Jacobites who were taken at the same time, for they were charged with high treason; and old Lord Griffin was condemned [469]to execution. But he pined away, and at the expiration of eighteen months died in prison of old age; for the queen regularly respited him, until she was thus relieved of the pain of putting an end to the existence of one of her father's most faithful servants.

During the summer the queen quarrelled with the Duke of Marlborough, because she desired to appoint colonels in the army, and he justly believed that he was more capable than she could possibly be of judging what, men had deserved promotion. The prime reason for this dispute was that Prince George had some favorites for whom he desired places, and the queen was anxious to gratify him; but the Duke of Marlborough was so angry that he wrote a very severe letter of reproof to his brother, George Churchill, who forthwith showed it to her majesty, and excited a great deal of displeasure.

Meanwhile the duchess kept hammering at Abigail Ma-sham, until at last she got hold of a subject for attack. One of the court spies had taken pains to inform her that her cousin had grand apartments at Kensington Palace, where she received her friends in style whenever they called. After duly turning this piece of news over in her mind, the duchess came to the conclusion that the apartments referred to must be those that King William had fitted up for his favorite, Keppel, and that Queen Anne had subsequently allotted to her. To be sure, she had never occupied them, and probably never would do so; but she was determined that no one else should enjoy them, least of all Abigail Masham. So, in high dudgeon, she posted off to Kensington to inquire into the matter.

Prince George was so ill from gout and asthma, and had grown so excessively fat, that he could not get up or down stairs without a great deal of suffering; therefore he was lodged on the ground-floor of the palace, whence he could [470]walk out in the grounds and enjoy the air whenever he felt able. The queen shared his apartments, and as he often required care at night to prevent his suffocating during his paroxysms of coughing, the bed-chamber women were placed in the adjoining rooms, so they could be summoned in case of need.


On arriving at the palace, the duchess ordered the housemaid to open her suite of apartments, and moved towards those on the ground-floor, although part of them were situated on the one above. The maid replied that she could not do so, because they were divided between Mrs. Masham and the bed-chamber women in waiting. That was just what the irate duchess had come to find out; so she immediately [471]made an indignant complaint to the queen, which resulted, after too much absurd wrangling to be worthy of recital, in the removal of the royal household to a house in Windsor Forest, which her majesty had purchased in the days when she was forbidden by Queen Mary to appear at court. In this quiet retreat she watched over her sick husband and sought to relieve his sufferings; but the duchess declared that the reason Queen Anne spent the summer in that place, "which was as hot as an oven," was to enable Mrs. Masham to admit such persons as desired secret interviews with her majesty, and they could be let in from the park without anybody being the wiser.

While at this cottage, the victory of Oudenarde was announced to her majesty. When she heard that it had been won at the cost of two thousand lives, she exclaimed: "O Lord! when will all this dreadful bloodshed cease?" Nevertheless, etiquette required her to write a letter of congratulation and thanks to the victorious Duke of Marlborough, which she did at once.

Public thanksgiving for the victory took place in the usual way at St. Paul's Cathedral on the nineteenth of August. As her husband was the victor, the Duchess of Marlborough considered herself the heroine of the day, and bustled about to make herself as important as possible. Her office of mistress of the robes imposed upon her several duties, and among others, the arrangement of the queen's jewels as she chose to have them worn. When the royal cortège was approaching the cathedral, the duchess chanced to cast her eyes over the costume of her majesty, and observed that the jewels were absent. This was a mark of disrespect that she would not stand, so she began scolding in such way that the queen lost her temper, and the two ladies quarrelled and abused each other until they got inside the church, when the duchess angrily bade the [472]queen "to hold her tongue." This was too much. Her majesty had borne a great deal from her friend, but such an insult aroused her indignation. Perhaps the duchess repented of her hasty speech; for a day or two later she took occasion to send the following humble note with a letter from her husband:—

"I cannot help sending your majesty this letter to show how exactly Lord Marlborough agrees with me in opinion that he has now no interest with you, though when I said so in the church last Thursday you were pleased to say it was untrue."

"And yet, I think he will be surprised to hear that when I had taken so much pains to put your jewels in a way that I thought you would like, Mrs. Masham could make you refuse to wear them in so unkind a manner; because that was a power she had not thought fit to exercise before.

"I will make no reflections on it, only that I must needs observe that your majesty chose a very wrong day to mortify me when your were just going to return thanks for a victory obtained by my Lord Marlborough!"

No doubt the queen thought, as anybody might, that a great deal of fuss had been made about a trifling matter, for she sent the following reply:—

"After the commands you gave me on the thanksgiving day not to answer, I should not have troubled you with these lines; but, to return the Duke of Marlborough's letter safe into your hands, and for the same reason, I do not say anything to that or to yours which enclosed it."

What a pity it is that the queen did not always behave with the same dignity, when dealing with the haughty, domineering duchess! If she had, many a heartache and many an insult she might have spared herself. Another letter, still more meek in its tone, was sent in reply; but [473]open warfare had been declared between the friends of former years, and the duchess had no chance of ever regaining her sway over her sovereign's heart.

Her husband's ill health was a matter of greater concern to Queen Anne just then than anything else could be; and, within a week after the stormy scene at St. Paul's, she set out with him for the west of England, hoping that change of air might benefit him. They travelled by easy stages until they arrived at Bath, a favorite resort, where Anne often went for her own health.

That autumn a fine statue of the queen that had been modeled by Bird, the sculptor, was finished, and placed at the west door of St. Paul's, where it still stands. Although it is said to be a perfect likeness, it is considered by no means an excellent work of art, notwithstanding its having cost over five hundred pounds. Just when it was erected, there was a report current that the queen intended to free herself from the tyranny of the Duchess of Marlborough. That was enough to strike terror to the hearts of the Whigs; for with their ruler in disgrace, they could hope for no better fate than banishment,—at least from the public treasury, whence they were generously helping themselves. Their only chance then was to calumniate the queen and make her as unpopular as possible, so that when it came to the point their party would be too strong for her to resist. So they accused her of all sorts of vices in circulars that were daily distributed among the populace. One charge brought against her was that of intoxication, because one of her enemies had said "that she got drunk every day as a remedy to keep the gout from her stomach." Had this been a fact, the Duchess of Marlborough would certainly have been one of her first accusers, but even in her most malignant moods she never mentions such a fact. However, the Whig physician, Dr. Garth, wrote an epigram [474]which was found fastened to the statue the day after it appeared in front of St. Paul's Cathedral. It ran thus:—

"Here mighty Anne's statue placed we find,

Betwixt the daring passions of her mind;

A brandy-shop before, a church behind:

But why thy back turned to that sacred place,

As thy unhappy father's was to grace?

Why here, like Tantalus, in torments placed,

To view those waters which thou canst not taste?

Though, by thy proffer'd globe we may perceive,

That for a dram, thou the whole world would'st give."

It must be remembered that this was written by an enemy; very different is the poetry under an engraving of the queen and her consort at the British Museum, and forms a pleasing contrast to the above:—

"The only married queen that ne'er knew strife,

Controlling monarchs, but submissive wife,

Like angels' sighs her downy passions move,

Tenderly loving and attractive love.

Of every grace and virtue she's possessed—

Was mother, wife, and queen, and all the best"

On her return from Bath the queen congratulated herself on her husband's improvement; but he knew that it was only momentary, and when she was preparing for a hunting excursion at Newmarket he begged her not to leave him. He felt that he had not long to live, and he was right, for he died before the close of the month, at Kensington Palace. Queen Anne had been a happy wife for twenty years, and the death of the prince-consort was a dreadful blow, though she had witnessed his declining health for many months. Even at the moment of her greatest bereavement, the Duchess of Marlborough forced herself into the presence of the queen, and insisted upon leading her from the room after the prince was dead. Anne treated her with excessive coldness, merely submitting to [475]the arrangements she had made for her removal to St. James's Palace, because she was too miserable to oppose her.

The interment of the prince-consort took place on the thirteenth of November. The funeral was private, which only means that it was performed by torchlight at night, for it was attended by all the ministers and great officers of state. The court went into mourning, and all the theatres were closed for a month.

A.D. 1709. The duchess continued to watch Queen Anne very closely, and was shocked when fires were ordered to be made in the apartments occupied by the late prince-consort, also in those below, the two being connected by a private back staircase. They were for her majesty and Mrs. Masham, and strong suspicions were aroused in the mind of the active watch-dog that this arrangement was effected for the purpose of granting interviews with her political opponents. She, therefore, took the queen to task for such an irregular mode of proceeding, and raising her eyes and hands in holy horror, said: "I'm amazed!" But the queen made no reply, and probably no change in her plans just then, for she was so absorbed in grief that she took no interest in anything for many months. She was not sufficiently recovered in spirits to open parliament the following May, but she issued a general pardon, particularly to those who had been in correspondence with the Court of St. Germain, and it was confirmed. This was for the protection of Lord-treasurer Godolphin as well as herself, for she was always in mortal terror lest the Marlborough family should proclaim to the world the part she had played in the revolution. Therefore she dared not exasperate the duchess, nor could she remove her until the duke had accumulated wealth sufficient to render the stability of the government a matter of personal interest with him. The [476]duchess understood this perfectly, and made the queen feel her power, as we have seen.

Another victory won by the Duke of Marlborough forced her majesty to reappear in public. This was Malplaquet; but twenty thousand British subjects had lost their lives on the battle-field, and Queen Anne joined the thanksgiving procession with a heavy heart, and with eyes red and swollen from weeping. She could not rejoice over a victory at such a sacrifice. The details of the war filled her with horror, and she longed to put an end to the dreadful slaughter; but the victorious duke's return gave her little encouragement in that respect, for he demanded of the queen "her patent to make him captain-general for life, because the war would not only last through their lives, but probably forever." Anne was perfectly amazed at this extraordinary speech, but dismissed the subject by answering: "That she would take time to consider it," and afterwards asked Lord-chancellor Cowper: "In what words would you draw a commission which is to render the Duke of Marlborough captain-general of my armies for life?"

Lord Cowper stared as though he thought her majesty had taken leave of her senses, and then warmly expressed his disapproval of such a proceeding. "Well, talk to the Duke of Marlborough about it," replied the queen, without telling him that she had never intended to make the appointment. Cowper obeyed, and assured the duke "that he would never put the great seal of England to such a commission." The Duke of Argyle and several other noblemen were secretly brought to confer with the queen on this subject, and she asked what she should do if her refusal to appoint Marlborough captain-general for life should prompt him to make an attack on the crown. The Duke of Argyle replied: "Her majesty need not worry, for he would undertake, if ever she commanded it, to seize



[479]the Duke of Marlborough, at the head of his troops, and bring him before her, dead or alive!"

It was Harley who brought this secret council together, and the Marlboroughs hated him worse than ever when they discovered it. They had gone a step too far, and the division in their own party in consequence caused the duke to withdraw his request.

Her majesty having expressed her intention to lay aside her mourning at the Christmas festival, which was close at hand, intercourse became necessary between her and the duchess, who was mistress of the robes. This was a signal for the renewal of hostilities, beginning with lodgings and situations for chambermaids and other members of the royal household; for the tyrant duchess insisted on her right to make every appointment of that sort. Many severe letters passed between her and the queen on this subject, and it became necessary to inform her on one or two occasions that she had rather overstepped the mark when claiming "her rights." The storm was at its height when the duchess discovered that her majesty, without asking permission, had ordered a bottle of wine to be allowed daily to a sick laundress who had washed her laces for twenty years. Thereupon she raved like an angry fishwife, and her voice was raised to such a pitch that the footmen at the back-stairs heard every word she uttered. The queen, unable to contend with such a vixen, rose to leave the room; but the irate duchess whisked past her, slammed the door, posted her back against it, and informed her royal mistress "that she should hear her out, for that was the least favor she could do her for having set the crown on her head and kept it there." This tirade was kept up for nearly an hour; then Sarah of Marlborough finished by saying "that she did not care if she never saw her majesty again," and flounced out of the room as the queen calmly [480]replied, "that she thought, indeed, the more seldom the better."

It is hard to comprehend how a sovereign could submit to such humiliating scenes, but she knew that the chief cause of complaint with the duchess regarding the wine arose from the fact of the laundress having once served Mrs. Masham, who, it was supposed, was the instigator of the queen's beneficent act. Even then such petty jealousy, and such absurdly, undignified behavior give a poor opinion to the world of the lofty duchess's head and heart. She and the queen scarcely spoke after this; but a day or two before Christmas she wrote a letter to her majesty lecturing her on the necessity of entering on the religious services of the season with a spirit of meekness and forgiveness for injuries. Some passages were so insolent that the letter was not answered; but as the queen passed to the altar of St. James's Chapel, she bestowed a gracious smile on the writer.

A.D. 1710. The new year opened with the queen at Hampton Court, considering the best means for breaking loose from the trammels of the Whig party, headed by the Marlborough family. It was a difficult step, but she was determined to take it, and for that purpose summoned Harley to her presence in the most secret manner possible. His advice was to begin by filling the post of lieutenant of the Tower, just vacated by the death of the Earl of Essex, as her majesty chose, without consulting anybody. In consequence, the Earl of Rivers was appointed to this great office, whereupon the duchess flew into a rage, and declared that a man who had borne the nickname of "Tyburn Dick" in his youth, having barely escaped conviction at the criminal bar for robbing his own father, was no fit person for such an honor. But this is how he had managed to obtain it: No sooner did he hear of the death



[483]of Essex than he hastened to the presence of the Duke of Marlborough with the news, adding a request that the great man would interest himself with the queen to secure the vacant post for him. It was not the duke's way to give a decided refusal, nor did he hesitate to make promises that he had not the slightest intention of fulfilling; so, after complimenting "Tyburn Dick," and loading him with offers of kindness, the duke advised him to "think of something better than the lieutenancy of the Tower, as the place was not worthy of his talent." However, the man was determined, and said: "He was going to ask the queen for the appointment, and would tell her that his grace had no objection." Marlborough, who never dreamed that the queen would take an important step without consulting him, told Lord Rivers that "he might say so if he pleased;" whereupon the petitioner lost not a moment in seeking an audience of the queen, who, on hearing what Marlborough had said, with the adornments Lord Rivers chose to add, made the appointment at once. As the new lieutenant of the Tower passed out of the royal presence he made the duke, who was just entering, a most profound bow, and rubbed his hands with delight as he left the palace. But we know that the duke had not intended that Rivers should succeed Essex, and the object of his present visit to her majesty was to propose the Duke of Northumberland instead. He was amazed to find that he was too late, and made serious complaints to the queen, who asked him, "whether Earl Rivers had asserted what was not true." The duke could not say that he had, and so there was no redress; but, when her majesty followed up this appointment by one for colonel of a regiment, Lord Godolphin was as indignant as the duke himself, and she was forced to withdraw.

Before departing for his campaign the Duke of Marlborough [484]sought an interview with the queen, and requested that his wife might be permitted to remain in the country as much as possible, and that as soon as peace was made her resignation might be accepted in favor of her daughters. The queen granted the first part of the request with alacrity, delighted at the prospect of being relieved of the presence of her tyrant, but made no reply with regard to the daughter's, on whom she intended to bestow no favors whatever.

Now a most important trial took place this year, that created intense excitement, and occupied the court for three entire weeks. It was that of Dr. Sacheverel, a representative of an ancient Norman family, who had been impeached, chiefly on charges connected with the church; but, as this affair is excessively dry and uninteresting, it is only necessary to mention it because of its bearing on the position of Queen Anne. Dr. Sacheverel belonged to her party, and she was so much interested in his trial that she sat to witness it every day in a curtained box at Westminster Hall. At the end of the contest the doctor was sentenced to suspend his preaching for three years, which was almost equivalent to acquittal. The lower classes showed clearly that they were for their "good Queen Anne," and that they were ready to rise in her defence against the Whig ministry whenever she should say the word. This feeling, which was so clearly manifested, encouraged the queen to take measures to free herself from the Marlboroughs and their party. The duchess made several attempts at private interviews, but was always repulsed, until she became convinced at last that Queen Anne would see her only at public receptions, or when official duties required it. The Marlborough family conclave were convinced that their days were numbered when the Tory Duke of Shrewsbury was made lord-chamberlain [485]of the royal household in place of the Whig Marquis of Kent. This was followed up by the removal of Lord Sunderland from his office of secretary of state. This young man, as son-in-law of the Duchess of Marlborough, had heard her majesty spoken of with so much disrespect that he had on several occasions behaved most rudely, and he was removed for this reason, more than for any adherence to the Whig party.

The colonel whom her majesty had desired to appoint when she met with such violent opposition was Jack Hill, brother to Mrs. Masham, her favorite bed-chamber woman. She made another attempt, and positively declared that she would not sign a single one of the Duke of Marlborough's numerous commissions until her will was obeyed in this matter. This was alarming, for the duke received payment for these commissions; so he gave in at once and signed Jack Hill's appointment without further parley. Queen Anne forthwith sent the new officer to make an attack on Quebec, as the conquest of Canada was deemed an important measure for the security of the British possessions in America. Much to the delight of the Marlborough party, Jack Hill's attempt was a failure.

The duchess was so angry at the dismissal of her son-in-law that she sent a letter to her husband, which he was to copy and forward to her majesty as though it were expressive of his own wrath, but he tossed it into the fire. But the irrepressible duchess had it intimated to the queen through David Hamilton, one of the court physicians, "that if she persisted in ruining her party all her fond and friendly letters of former days should be published, and forwarded on lest 'dear Mrs. Morley' might have forgotten how high her opinion had been of Mrs. Freeman, at that date." The queen kept her own letter, and demanded all the rest,saying: "She was sure the duchess [486]did not now value them." Not another one found its way to the queen, for they were weapons too powerful to be lightly parted with.

The next dismissal was that of the queen's long-trusted lord-treasurer, Godolphin. Several of his friends expressed their concern at this move on the part of her majesty. She merely replied, "I am sorry for it, but could not help it," and then turned out Lord Rialton, another of the Marlborough sons-in-law. The office of lord-treasurer was placed in the hands of seven commissioners, with Mr. Harley at their head.

The Duke of Marlborough wrote his wife that he had heard of an assassin being on his way from Vienna to England with designs against the queen's life, and requested that the utmost care might be taken lest he should gain access to the royal presence. Here was a chance for the duchess to ingratiate herself once more in the queen's favor; so she drove post haste to court, and with a most important air demanded admittance, "on a matter of life and death." Her majesty refused to see her, whereupon the duchess sent her husband's letter by a messenger. One of Queen Anne's peculiarities was indifference to personal danger, so without heeding the warning, she merely returned the duke's letter with a line, saying: "Just as I was coming down stairs I received yours, so could not return enclosed until I got back." This was the last written sentence that ever passed between the queen and the duchess.

Many of the ancient nobility who had never approached the English court since the revolution paid their respects to Queen Anne as soon as she had rid herself of the Marl-boroughs. But the principal one of that party still remained, for nobody had the courage to approach the terrible creature with any but flattering news; so it was determined [487]to await the return of the only person in the world who could manage her, and that was the duke himself.

Meanwhile the daring woman, who retained her office in defiance of sovereign, prime minister, and all the other high officials, drove about town in her magnificent coach, and made visits to different members of her party for the purpose of calumniating the queen. She was not permitted to enter the royal presence, and kept the gold keys that really belonged to the new officials; but she boldly declared that her majesty would soon want new gowns, and then she would be compelled to come to her to give orders for them. But she was mistaken, for on the return of the duke in December there was to be an end of her influence with the queen in every particular. On his arrival in London the duke took a hack and drove direct to St. James's, where he had a private half hour's interview with the queen. In his peculiar plaintive tone of voice he lamented his connection with the Whigs, and told her majesty "that he was worn out with fatigue, age, and misfortunes," and added "that he was neither covetous nor ambitious,"—at which she could scarcely suppress a smile. At the close of the interview the queen requested him to tell his wife "that she wished back her gold keys as groom of the stole and mistress of the robes." The duke remonstrated, but the queen merely replied: "It was for her honor that the keys should be returned forthwith."

The duke entreated that this matter might be delayed until after the peace, which must take place the ensuing summer, when he and his wife would retire together. The queen would not delay the return of the keys one week. The duke fell on his knees and begged for a respite of ten days; the queen compromised, and named three as the utmost limit. Two days later the duke again presented [488]himself at St. James's on urgent business; but her majesty refused to speak with him, unless he had brought the gold keys. Thereupon he returned home to get them, when a stormy scene ensued, which ended by his wife throwing the key's at his head. When the queen received them from the duke's hands, she said, "she valued them more than if he had brought her the spoils of an enemy."

A.D. 1711. Early in the following year Queen Anne divided between the Duchess of Somerset and Mrs. Ma-sham the offices formerly held by the Duchess of Marlborough, the former being made mistress of the robes and groom of the stole; the latter, keeper of the privy-purse. On the second of May Queen Anne's uncle, the Earl of Rochester, died suddenly of apoplexy.

Although Anne was his own niece, the earl had never concealed from her his opinion that she had no right to the crown she wore; but he had consented to aid her in the government, and was, as we know, made president of the council. But he entertained to the last day of his life the hope that he should see the son of James II. restored to the throne, and was the means of causing several letters to pass between James Stuart, or the Chevalier de St. George, as he was then called, and the queen.

The Duke of Buckingham succeeded Rochester; and, being a relation of the queen's, a most friendly feeling existed between them. Once, after reading a long letter presented by him from her brother, the Chevalier de St. George, in which he set forth his claim to the throne, Queen Anne turned to Buckingham, and asked: "How can I serve him, my lord? You well know that a papist cannot enjoy this crown in peace. Why has the example of my father no weight with his son? He prefers his religious errors to the throne of a great kingdom. He must thank himself, therefore, for his own exclusion. All would be easy if he would [489]join the Church of England. Advise him to change his religion, my lord."

Although Queen Anne spoke thus, she knew that her brother would not renounce Catholicism, and she had no intention of aiding him to the throne unless he did. She favored the succession of the Protestant house of Hanover; but the Princess Sophia, who was the heiress of that line, had emphatically declared that if the young prince and princess of the house of Stuart would become members of the Church of England, their claim should never be disputed, nor would it have been, as future events proved.

Throughout the summer Queen Anne suffered so much from gout that she could scarcely stir from her bed, but she held her receptions all the same, and the crowd was often so great that only those nearest the bed could get sight of her. In the autumn she was better, and received ambassadors from France to negotiate for peace. One evening in October her majesty mentioned publicly at supper "that she had agreed to treat with France, and that she did not doubt but that in a little time she should be able to announce to her people that which she had long desired,—a general peace for Europe."

But she had not yet secured peace at home, for matters took such a turn that the new ministry insisted on the removal of the Duchess of Somerset, and when her majesty returned to the palace from the parliament meeting she asked for the Duchess of Marlborough. One of the latter's friends rushed to her, without a moment's delay, and told her that if she would go to the queen then she might, with a few flattering words, overthrow her enemies, but she indignantly refused. The queen had new ground for complaint against the duchess when she took possession of her new palace, just completed in St. James's Park; for the apartments she left in the queen's palace were bereft of locks, [490]bolts, mirrors, marble slabs, and pictures, and looked as though a destructive army had sacked them. The duke lamented the strange conduct of his wife when he got back, but declared "that there was no help for it, and a man must bear a good deal to lead a quiet life at home." But this confession did not prevent his dismissal from the army. He was succeeded by the Duke of Ormond, who was ordered not to gain victories, but to keep the British forces in a state of armed neutrality until peace was concluded.

It was at this time that Mr. Masham was made a peer, because her majesty was urged to it by some of her ministers, but she said that she had never any intention of making Abigail a great lady, and feared that by so doing she had lost a useful servant. But Lady Masham promised to continue in the office of dresser to her majesty even though she was a peeress.

A.D. 1712. Nothing had given the queen so much trouble since the death of the prince-consort as that of her beautiful sister, the Princess Louisa, which occurred suddenly at St. Germain. An account of this sad event is given in the story of Mary Beatrice of Modena.

Anne was ill herself in the autumn from intermittent fever, from which she never entirely recovered.

Dean Swift was anxious to become a bishop at this period, and applied for the see of Hereford, which Queen Anne was disposed to grant, because she had never heard of him as anything but a partisan of the church. But he and Lady Masham had been friends for a long time, and she had frequently warned him to destroy the witty, satirical, offensive articles he had shown her about her majesty, the Duchess of Somerset, and others. The queen knew nothing about these writings, but the Duchess of Somerset did, so she secured the aid of Dr. Sharpe, Arch- [491]bishop of York, to prevent the appointment. When her majesty consulted the archbishop on the subject, he startled her with this question: "Ought not your sacred majesty to be first certain whether Dr. Swift is a Christian before he becomes a bishop?" The queen asked him what he could possibly mean, whereupon, having armed himself with "The Tale of a Tub," and other works of Swift, he handed them to her. She was amazed at what she read, and ashamed of the slanderous puns addressed to herself, for she had not suspected their existence. It is needless to add that Swift was not raised to the bishopric of England, but the following year he was appointed Dean of St. Patrick's in Ireland.

A.D. 1713. The treaty of peace that Queen Anne had so long and so earnestly desired was at last signed at Utrecht, and the French ambassador, Duc d'Aumont, soon after arrived in London to confer with her majesty on this subject. He addressed the most flattering speeches to her, and presented her with the nine beautiful gray Flemish horses with which he had made his public entrance into the metropolis.

Parliament met soon after; and the queen's speech, announcing peace, after eleven years of warfare, was anxiously awaited. But she was too ill with gout, which had affected different parts of her body, to be able to appear in the house of lords until the ninth of April, and then her voice was painfully weak from her long suffering. Her majesty offered Louis IV. the Order of the Garter in honor of the signing of the peace; but the most interesting event to us of the present day connected with it is that the great composer, Handel, wrote his magnificent Jubilate to celebrate it.

As time went on the queen's health grew no better, and she was such an enormous eater that frequent attacks of [492]gout were the result,—particularly as she had grown so corpulent from her other disease, dropsy, that she could take no exercise, and had to be lowered and raised from one floor to another in the palace by means of a chair worked with pulleys and ropes. She was in constant dread lest her brother should land in England, or George of Hanover present himself at court to claim his place as her successor. She, therefore, wrote two letters, one to Princess Sophia, Dowager Electress of Brunswick, the other to George Augustus, Duke of Cambridge, setting forth the danger of such a proceeding, and appealing to their honor. As we know, her fears were groundless in that direction; for the house of Hanover made no attempt to approach the shores of England, though there has been some dispute among historians as to their real intentions in this matter.

A.D. 1714. Queen Anne paid the ballad writer, Tom D'Urfey, a fee of fifty pounds for a verse he repeated one day while she was at dessert, that happened to tickle her fancy. As it refers to the Hanover succession, it is worth repeating:—

"The crown's far too weighty

For shoulders of eighty;

She could not sustain such a trophy.

Her hand, too, already

Has grown so unsteady

She can't hold a sceptre;

So Providence kept her

Away—poor old Dowager Sophy!"

Certainly D'Urfey did not earn his fifty pounds for the literary merit of the verse, but perhaps it was because it possessed so little that it pleased the queen. The Electress Sophia of Hanover, about whom it was written, died before the end of the year, at the age of eighty-four.

Queen Anne witnessed several stormy scenes among [493]her ministers towards the end of July that caused her intense suffering. After each one she would sink into a swoon from exhaustion, and frequently said to her physician, Dr. Arbuthnot, "I shall never survive it." The councillors showed little consideration for her presence, and continued their quarrels, regardless of her ill health, though they must have seen the cruel effect. On the evening of July 29, there was to be another council meeting, which the sick queen dreaded more than all the others. When the hour drew near, Mrs. Danvers, one of the oldest ladies of the royal household, entered the presence chamber of Kensington Palace, and to her great surprise, beheld the queen standing before the clock with her eyes intently fixed on the dial plate. As her majesty had not for several months been able to move without assistance, Mrs. Danvers's surprise is early understood. She crossed the large room, the deep silence of which was only broken by the ticking of the clock, and approaching the queen, asked, "whether her majesty saw anything unusual there in the clock?" Without answering, Queen Anne turned slowly and looked at the speaker, who was so terrified at the ghastly, troubled expression on her face that she screamed for help. The queen was carried to bed by the people who had hastened to the summons, and raved in delirium for many hours about "the Pretender."

Doctor Arbuthnot passed the night at her bedside, with several other court physicians, and the invalid rallied; but the news of her condition spread like wild-fire all over London; and in the morning Dr. Mead, a Whig politician, was summoned. As soon as he had seen the royal invalid, he demanded that "those who were in favor of the Protestant succession should at once send a bulletin of her majesty's symptoms to the Elector of Hanover's physicians, who would soon say how long Queen Anne had to live: [494]but he staked his professional reputation that her majesty would be no more long before such intelligence should be received." It has always been supposed that the peaceable proclamation of George I. was due to this physician's boldness.

But Queen Anne did not die quite as soon as Dr. Mead had predicted, which was within an hour, for she recovered consciousness and speech enough, after being bled a second time, to appoint the Duke of Shrewsbury prime minister.

He approached her bed, and asked her, "if she knew to whom she gave the white wand?"—the insignia of office.

"Yes," replied the queen, "to the Duke of Shrewsbury; for God's sake, use it for the good of my people." Shortly after her mind began to wander again, and she frequently exclaimed in a piteous tone: "Oh, my brother!—oh, my poor brother!"

The privy council assembled at her bedside; but she never recovered consciousness sufficient to pray or to speak rationally, and they soon withdrew.

To prevent a disturbance in the city, the lord-mayor was ordered to be particularly watchful; trained troops were held in readiness to act at a moment's warning, and an extra guard was placed at the Tower. The Jacobite party held a meeting, but decided, after a great deal of consideration, that they could do nothing towards proclaiming the Chevalier de St. George.

Between seven and eight o'clock, on the morning of August 1, 1714, Queen Anne expired, in the fiftieth year of her age, and the thirteenth of her reign. She died as her predecessor, William III., had done, on Sunday, and George I. was proclaimed king the same day. It must have been a bitter trial to the Jacobites to behold the Duke of Marl-



borough, [497]who, after a voluntary exile, returned to London the Wednesday succeeding Queen Anne's death, and made a grand triumphal entry, attended by hundreds of gentlemen on horseback, some of the nobility in coaches, and the city militia; but they had the satisfaction of seeing his own splendid carriage break down by Temple-Bar.

Queen Anne had done much good for her people, and no evil; and there never was a sovereign more deeply regretted. The Duchess of Marlborough wrote a most unjust, abusive description of her benefactress; but it is to be hoped our young readers will be able to form an estimate of her character for themselves.

Her remains were deposited in the vault on the south side of Henry VIII.'s Chapel, in Westminster, where lie Charles II., William III., and Prince George of Denmark. There was only one place left in this vault, and as soon as it received the last of the Stuart sovereigns it was bricked up. No monument nor tablet marks the resting-place of "good Queen Anne," though it seems as though the fondness of "the Bounty" deserved at least this trifling distinction from the Church of England.