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translating the Bible into English (which the unreformed
religion never permitted to be done), was left in poverty
while the great families clutched the Church lands and
money. The people had been told that when the Crown
came into possession of these funds, it would not be neces-
sary to tax them ; but they were taxed afresh durecUy after-
wards. It was fortunate for them, indeed, that so many
nobles were so greedy for this wealth ; since, if it had re-
mained with the Crown, there might have been no end to
tyranny for hundreds of years. One of the most active
writers on the Church's side against the King was a member
of his own family -^ a sort of distant cousin, Rbqinald Polk



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HKNRY THE EIGHTU. 299

by name — who attacked him in the moat violent manner
(though he received a pension fix>m him all the time), and
fooght for the Church with his pen, day and night. As he
was be^'ond the King's reach — being in Italy — the King
politely invited him over to discuss the subject; but he,
knowing better than to come, and wisely staying where he
was, the King's rage fell n|x>n his brother Lord Montague,
the Marquis of Exeter, and some other gentlemen: who
were tried fbr high treason in corresponding ¥dth him and
aiding him — which they pix>bably did — and were all exe-
cated. The Pope made Reginald Pole a cardinal; but, so
much against his will, that it is thought he even aspired in
his own mind to the vacant throne of England, and had
hopes of marrj'ing the Princess Mary. His being made a
high priest, however, put an end to all that. His mother,
the venerable Countess of Salisbury — who was, unfortu-
nately for herself, within the tyrant's reach — was the last
of his relatives on whom his wrath fell. When she was told
to lay her gray head upon the block, she answei*ed the
executioner, '"No! My head never committed treason, and
if you want it, 3'ou shall seize it." So, she ran round and
round the scaffold with the executioner striking at her, and
her gray hair bedabbled with blood ; and even when they held
her down upon the block she moved her head about to the
last, resolved to be no party to her own barbarous murder.
All this the people bore, as they had borne everything else.

Indeed they bore much more ; for the slow fires of Smith-
field were continually burning, and people were constantly
being roasted to death — still to show what a good Christian
the King was. He defied the Pope and his Bull, which was
now issued, and had come into England; but he burned
innumerable people whose only offence was timt they differecl
from the Pope's religious opinions. Tliere was a wretched
man named Lambert, among others, who was tried for this
liefore the King, and with whom six bishops argued one
::fler. another. When he was quite exhausted (as w^U h^



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300 A CHILD'S HISTOfiY OF BNGLAND.

might be, after six bishops), he tha*ew himself Qn the King's
mercy; but the King blnstered out that he had do mercy;
for heretics. So, Jie too fed the fire.

All this the people bore, and more than all this yet. The
national spirit seems to have been banished from the kingdom
at this time. The very people who were executed for treason,
the verj' wives and friends of the *-* bluff" King, spoke of lum
on the scaflfbld as a good prince, and a gentle prinoe — Just as
serfs in similar circumstatiees have beedti known to do> under
the Sultans aud Bashaws of the East, or under the fierce old
tyrants of Russia, who poured boiling, aod fizzing water on
them alternately, until they died. The Parliament were as
bad as the i^est, and gave the King whatever he wanted ; among
other rile accommodations, they gave him new powers of
murdering, at his will and pleasure, any one whom he might
choose to call a traitor. But ^e wont ineasure they passed
was an Act of Six ArUoles, commonly called at the time
^^ the whip with six strings ; " which punished offeiioes
a^inst the Pope's opinions, without merqy, and eoforced the
verj' worst parts of the monklah rel^ion, Cranmer woukl
have modified it, if he could ; but, being. o\'erborn« by the
Romish party, had not tlie power. As one of the artielea
declared that priests should not marry, and as be was maiv
ried himself, he sent lus wife and ehiklrea into Gennany,
and began to tremble at his danger ; none the leas because
he was, and had long been, the King's Mend. This whip of
bIx strings was made under the King's own eye. It should
never be forgotten of him how ci^wUy be supported the worst
of tlie Popish doctrines when there was nothing to be got
by opposing them.

This amiable monarch now Uiought of taking another wife.
He proposed to the French King to liave some of the ladies
of tlie French Court exhibited before him, that he might make
his Royal clioiee ; but the French King aixswered that be
would rather not have lus ladies trottefl out to be shown like
horses i^a fisLir. He proposed to the Duchess Dowag)er of



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HENRY THE EIGHTH. 301

Milan, who replied that she might have thought of such a
match if she had had two heads ; but, that only owning one,
she must beg to keep it safe. At last Cromwell represented
that there was a Protestant Princess in Germany — those whb
held the reformed religion were called Protestants, because
their leaders had Protested against the abuses and impositions
of the unreformed Church — named Anne of Clevks, who
was beautiful, and would answer the puipose admirably.
The King said was she a large woman, because he must have
a fat wife? " O yes," said Cromwell, *' she was very large,
jast the thing." On hearing this, the King sent over his
famous painter, Hans Holbein, to take her portrait. Hans
made her oiit to be so good-looking that the King was satis-
fied, and the marriage was arranged. But, whether anybody-
had paid Hans to touch up the picture ; or whether Hans, like
one or two other painters, flattered a princess in the ordinary
way of business, I cannot say : all I know is, that wlum
Anne came over and the King went to Rochester to meet her,
and first saw her without her seeing him, he swore she was
'* a great Flanders mare," and said he would never marr}*
her. Being obliged to do it now matters had gone so far, he
wonld not give her the presents he had prepared, and would
never notice her. He never forgave Cromwell his part in the
affair. His doi^vnfall dates ft'om that time.

It was quickened by his enemies in the interests of the un-
reformed religion, putting in the King's way, at a state din-
ner, a niece of the Duke of Norfolk, Catharine Howard, a
young lady of fascinating manners, though small in stature
and not particularly beautiful. Falling in love with her on
th6 spot, the King soon divorced Anne of Clevos aflor
making her tlie subject of much brutal talk, on pretence that
she had been previously betrothed to some one else — which
would never do for one of his dignity — and married Catlie-
rine. It is probable that on his wedding-day, of all days in
the 5'ear, he sent his faithful Cromwell to tlie scaffold and had
his head struck oflT; He further celebrated the occasion by



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302 A CHILD'S HISTOUY OF ENGLAND.

burning at one time, and causing to be drawn to tbe fire on
tlie same hurdles, some Protestant prisoners for denjing tlie
Pope*s doctrines, and some Roman Catholic prisoners for
denying his own supremacj'. Still the people bore it, and
not a gentleman in England raised his hand.

But, by a just retribution, it soon came out that Catherine
Howard, before her marriage, had been really guilty of such
crimes as the King had falsely attributed to his second wife
Anne Boleyn ; so, again the dreadfbl axe made the King a
widower, and this Queen passed away as so many in that
reign had passed away before her. As an appropriate pur-
suit under the circumstances, Henry then applied himself to
superintending the composition of a religious bode called ^^ A
necessary doctrine for any Christian Man." He must have been
a little confused in his mmd, I think, at about this period ;
for he was so false to himself as to be true to some one : that
some one being Cranmer, whom t&e Duke of Norfolk and
otliers of his enemies tried to ruin ; but to whom the King
was steadfast, and to whom he one night gave his ring,
charging him when he should find himself, next da}', accused
of treason, to show it to the council board. This Cranmer
did to tlie confusion of his enemies. I sup|>ose the King
thought he might want him a little longer.

He married yet once more. Yes, strange to say, he found
in England anotlier woman who would become his wife, and
she was Catherine Parr, widow of Lord Latimer. SIkj
leaned towards the reformed religion ; and it is some corafhrt
to know, that she tormented the King considerably by argu-
ing a variet}' of doctrinal points with him on all |>06sible
occasions. She had very nearly done tliis to her pwn de-
struction. After one of these ]c;pnversations the King in a
yery black mood actually instructed Gardiner, one of his
Bishops who favored the Popish opinions, to draw a bill of
accusation against her, whicl| would have inevitably brought
her to the scaffold where her predecessors had died, but that
one of her friends pickeil up the paper of instructions wliicl)



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HENBY THE EIGHTH. 803

had been dropped in the palace, and gave her timely notice.
She fell ill with terror ; but managed the King so well when
he came to entrap her into further statements — r by saying
that she had only spoken on such points to diveil; his. mind
and to get some information from his extraordinary wisdom —
that he gave her a kiss and called her his ST^eetheart. And,
when the Chancellor came next day actually to take her to
the Tower, the King sent him about his business, and honoi'ed
bxMk with the epithets of a beast, a knave, and a fool. So
near was Catherine Farr to the block, and so narrow was lier
escape!

There was war with Scotland in this reign, and a shoit
clumsy war with France for favoring Scotland; but, the
events at home were so dreadful, and leave such an enduring
stain on the country, that I need say no more of what hap-
pened abroad.

A few more horrors, and this raign is over. There was a
lady, Anke Askew* in Lincolnshire, who indined to tlie
Protestant opinions, and whose husband being a fierce Catho-
lic, turned her out of his house. She came to London, and
was considered as offending against the six ailicles, and was
taken to the Tower, and put upon the rack — probably be-
cause it was hoped that she might, in her agony, criminate
some obnoxious persons ; if falsely, so much the better. She
was tortured without uttering a cry, until the Lieutenant of
tlie Tower would suffer his men to torture her no more ; and
then two priests who were present actuallj^ pulled off their
robes, and turned the wheels of the rack with their own hands,
so rending and twisting and breaking her that she was after-
wanls carried to the fii*e in a chair. She was burned with
three others, a gentleman, a clerg}*man, and a tailor ; and so
the world went on.

Eitlier the King became afraid of the ix)wer of the Duke of
Norfolk, and his son the Earl of Surrey, or they gave him
some offence, but he resolved to pull them down, to follow all
the rest who were gone. The son was tried fii*st — of course



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304 A CHILD'S HIBTORY OP ENGLAND.

for nothing — and defended himself bravely ; Imt of eocne
lie was found guiit}*, and of course he was executed. Tbci
his fatlier was laid hold of, and left for death too.

But the King himself was lefb fbt death by a Gi>Bater King,
and the earth was to be i-id of him at last. He was now t
swollen, hideous spectacle, with a great hole in his leg, and
so odious to ever}' sense that it was dreadftil to approach him.
When he was found to be djing, Cranmer was sent !br from
his palace at Cro}'don, and eame with all speed, but fomd
him speechlessr. Happily, in that hour be perislied. He wsb
in the fifty-sixth 3'ear of his age, and the thu-t}'-eighth of hit
reign.

Henry the Eighth has been favored by some Protestant
writers, because the Reformation was achieved in bis tfane.
But the mighty merit of H lies with other men and not with
him ; and it can be i*endered none the worse bj' this monstei's
crimes, and none tlie better by any defence of them. The
plain truth is, that he was a most intolerable ruffian, a dis-
grace to human nature, and a blot of blood and grease opos
the history of England.



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BDWABD TAB SaXH. 305



CHAPTER XXIX.

BNGLAMD UNDER EDWARD THE SIXTH.

HsNRT THE EiOHTH bad luade a will, appointing a council
of sixteen to govern tke kingdom for bis son while he was
under age (he was now only ten yemra old), and another
couneil of twelve to help them. The most powerful of the
first council was the Earl, or UEwrFOftu, the yoiuig King's
UDcle, who lost no time in bringing hi» nephew with great
state up to Enfield, and thence to tb^ Tower. It was con*
sidered at the time a striking proof of virtue in tlie young
King that he was soiry for his father's death ; but, as com-
mon subject have that virtue too sometimes, we will say no
inore about it.

There was a carious part of the late King's will, requiring
his executors to fblfil whatever promises he bad made. Some
of the court wondering what these might be, the Earl of
Hertford and the other noblemen interested, said that they
were promises to advance and enrich them. So, the Earl of
Hertford nmde himself Duke or Somerset, and made his
brother Edward Seymour a baron ; and there were various
similar promotions, all very agreeable to tl^ parties con-
cerned, and very dutilbl, no doubt, to tlie late King's memory.
To be more duttibl still, they made themselves rich out of
Uic Church lands, and were very comfoilable. The new
Duke of Somerset caused himself to be declared Protector
of the kingdom, and was, indeed, the King.

As .young Edward the Sixth had been brought up in the
principles of the Protestant religion, everybody knew that
they would be maintained. But Cranmer, to whom they were

20



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306 A CHILD»S HISTOHY OP ENGLAND.

chiefly entrusted, advanced them steadily and temperatel}-.
Many sui^ei^stitious and ridiculous practices were stopped;
but practices which were harmless were not interfered
with.

The Duke of Somerset, the Protector, was anxious to have
the young King engaged In marriage to the young Queen of
Scotland, in order to prevent that princess from making an
alliance with any foreign power; but, as a large party in
Scotland were unfavorable to this plan, he invaded that conn-
try. His excuse for doing so was, that the Border men —
that is, the Scotch who lived in that part of the country where
England and Scotland joined — trouWeil the English very
much. But there were two sides to this question ; for the
English Border men troubled the Scotch too ; and, throng
many long years, there were perpetual border quarrels which
gave rise to numbers of old tales and songs. However, the
Protector invaded Scotland ; and Arran, the Scottish Regent,
with an army twice as large as his, advanced to n^eet him.
Thej' encountered on the banks of the river Esk, within a few
miles of Edinburgh ; and there, after a little skirmish, the
Protector made such moderate proposals, in offering to retire
if the Scotch would only engage not to marry their princess
to any foreign prince, that the Regent Uiouglit tlie English
were afraid. But in this he made a horrible mistake ; for tlie
English soldiers on land, and the English sailors on the
water, so set upon the Scotdi, that they broke and lied, and
more than ten thousand of them were killed. It was a dread-
ftil battle, for the ftigitives were slain without mere}-. The
ground for four miles, all the way to Edinburgh, was strewn
with dead men, and with arms, and legs, and heads. Some
hid themselves in streams and were dix>wned; some threw
away tlieir armor and were killed running, almost naked;
but in this battle of Rnkey the English lost only two or three
hundred men. They were much better dotted than the
Scotch ; at the poverty of whose appearance «nd eountiy they
were exceedingly astonished.



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EDWARD THE SIXTH. 307

A Paiiiament was called when Somerset came back, and it
repealed the whip with six strings, and did one or two other
good things ; though it unhappily retained the punishment of
homing for those people who did not make believe to believe,
in all religious matters, what the Government had declared
that they must and should believe. It also made a foolish
law (meant to put down beggars) , that any man who lived
idly and loitered about for three days together, should be
bamed with a hot iron, made a slave, and wear an iron fetter.
But this savage absurdit}' soon came to an end, and went the
way of a great man}' other foolish laws.

The Protector was now so pi-oud that he sat in Parliament
before all the nobles, on the right hand of the throne. Many
other noblemen, who only wanted to be as proud if they coukl
get a chance, became his enemies of course ; and it is su^)-
poeed that he came back suddenly from Scotland because he
had received news that his brother, Lord Seymour, was be*
coming dangerous to him. This lord was now High Admiral
of Ei^hind ; a very handsome man, and a great favorite with
the Court ladies — even with the j'oung Princess Elizabeth,
who rom|)ed with him a little more than young princesses in
these times do with any one. He had married Catherine
Parr, the late King's widow, who was now dead ; and, to
strengthen his power, he secretly supplied the young King
with money. He may even have engaged with some of his
brother's enemies in a plot to earry the boy off. On these
and other accusations, at any rate, he was confined in the
Tower, impeached, and found guiltj' ; his own brother's name
being — unnatural and sad to tell — the first signed to the
warrant for his execution. He was executed on Tower Hill,
and died denying his treason. One of his last proceedings in
this world was to write two letters, one to the Princess Eliz-
abeth, and one to tbe Princess Mary, which a servant of his
took charge of, and concealed in his shoe. These letters are
sup^iosed to have urged them against his brother, and to re-
venge his death. What they tmly contained is not known ;



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o08 A CHILD'S HISTORY OF ENGLAND.

but there is no doubt that be bad, at one time, obtained ^reat
influence over the Princess Elizabeth.

All tills while, tlie Protestant religion was making progress.
The images which the people had gradually come to worship
wei-e removed from the churches ; the |>eople were informed
that they need not confess themselves to piiests unless tbey
chose ; a common prayer-book was di*awn up in the English
language, which all could understand ; and many other im-
provements were made ; still moderately. For Cranmer was
a very moderate man, and even restrained the Protestaat
clergj' from violently abusing the unreformed religion — as
they ver>' often did, and which was not a good exana|>le.
But the people were at this time in gix^at distress. The ra-
pacious nobility who had come into [)ossession of the Church
lands, were very bad landlords. They enclosed great quan-
tities of ground for the feeding of sheep, wb^ch was then iikm^
pix>fitable than the growing of crops ; and this iocreased the
general distress. So the people, who still understood liUie
of wliat was going on about them, and still readily believed
what the homeless monks told them — many of whom had
been their good friends in their better days — took it into
their heads that all this was owing to the reformed religCoD,
and thei-efore rose in many pmts of tlie country-.

Tlie most powerful risings were in Devont^hire and Norfolk.
In Devonshire, the rebellion was so strong tliat ten tlioiiBsnd
men united within a few days, and even laid si^e to Eseler.
But Lord Russell, coming to the assistance of the eitizoBs
who defended that town, defeated the rebels ; and, not cwily
hanged the Mayor of one place, but hanged the vicar of
another from his own church steeple. What with hanglDg
and killing b3' the sword, four thousand of the rebels are
supposed to have fallen in that one count}'. In Norfolk
(whei-e the rising was more against the enclosure of open
lands tlian against tlie reformed religion) , the popular leader
was a man named Robebt Ket, a tanner of Wymondiiam.
The mob were, in the first instance, excited against the tan-



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EDWARD THE SIXTH. 309

iicr by one John Flowbrdew, a gentlemaa who owed htm a
grudge : bqt the tanner was more than a match for the gentle*
man, since he soon got the people on his side, and established
iMiDself near Norwich with quite an ani^\ There was a large
oak4ree in that place, on a spot called Household Hill, which
Ket named tbB Tree of Reformation ) and under its green
boughs, he and his men sat, in the midsummer weather, hold-
ing courts of justice, and debating aQfhirs of ^te* They
were even impartial enou^ to allow ^ome rather tiresome
public speakers to gel up into this Tree of Reformation, and
point out their enrors to them, in long discourses, while they
ky likening (not always without some grumbling and growl-
ing), in the shade below. At last, one sunny July day, a
herald appeared below the tree, and proclaimed Ket and all
his men traitovs, unleas from that moment they dispersed and
weot home: in which case they were to receive a pardon.
But, Ket and his men made light of the herald and became
stronger than e^'er, until the Earl of Wai'wiek went after
tbem with a sttflSeient force, and cut them all to pieces. A
few were hanged, drawn, and qumtered, as traitors, and their
lio^ were sent into various country (^aces to be a terror to
the people. Nine of them Were hanged upon nine green
braacbes of the Oak of Reformation ; and so, for the time,
that tree may be said to have withered away.

The Protector, though a bmighty man, had compassion for
the real distresses of the common people, and a sincere desire
to help them. But he was too proud and too high in degree
to hokl even their favor steadily ; and many of the nobles
always en\ied and hated hm^ because tliey were as proud
snd not as high as be. He was at this time huildUig a great
Palace m the Strand : to get the stone for which he blew up
ehorch steeples with gunpowder, and pulled down bishops'
houses : thus making himself stUl more disliked. At length,
his pcincipal enemy, the Earl of Warwick — Dudley by name,
sod the son of that Dudley who had made himself so odious
with Empaoa) in tb^ rs^n of Henry the Seventh — jomed



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310 A CHILD'S HISTORY OF ENGLAND.

with seven other members of the Council against him, formed
a separate Council ; and, becoming stronger in a few days,
sent him to the Tower under twenty-ntne articles <^ aocoaa-
tion. After being sentenced by the Council to the forfeitnre
of all his offices and lands, he was liberated and pardoned,
on making a rery humble submission. He was even taken
back into the Council again, after having suffered this fUl,
and married his daughter. Lady Aioce Seymocb, to Warwick's
eldest son. But such a reconciliation was little likely to last,
and did not outlive a year. Warwick, ha%ing got himself
made Duke of Northumberland, and having advanced the
more important of his fHends, then finished the histoiy by
causing the Duke of Somerset and his fHend Lord Gket, and
others, to be arrested for treason, in having conspired to seiae
and dethrone the King. They were also accused of having
intended to seize the new-Duke of Northumberland, with his
friends Lord Northamptok and Lord Pembroke ; to murder
them if they found need ; and to raise the City to revolt.
All this the fallen Protector positively denied ; exeept that
he confessed to having spoken of the murder of thoee three
noblemen, but having never designed it. He was acqoitted
of the chat^e of treason, and found guilty of the other dbarges ;
BO when the people — who remembered his having been their
friend, now that he was disgraced and in danger, saw htm come
out fh>m his trial with the axe turned fVom him' — they thought
he was altogether acquitted, and set up a loud shout of joy.

But the Duke of Somerset was ordered to be beheaded on
Tower Hill, at eight o'clock in the morning, and prodamatioDs



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