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CHARLES II AND HIS COURT




CHARLES II ABOUT 1651

KROM AN ENGRAVING BY FAITHORNE



CHARLES II AND
HIS COURT



BY

A. C. A. BRETT



WITH SEVENTEEN ILLUSTRATIONS



NEW YORK: G. P. PUTNAM S SONS

LONDON: METHUEN & GO. LTD.

1910



^\



y




TO
MY FATHER AND MOTHER



257047



PREFACE

I WISH to thank heartily and sincerely foi: help, the
following persons : — In the compilation of the text : my
Wife; the Rev. F. A. Hibbert, M.A., Headmaster of
Denstone College ; Messrs. A. C. Wentworth Lewis, O.
Nicholas, A. H. Montagu, and G. A. T. Davies ; for
reading through the MS., etc., and making many useful
suggestions : my Mother, and Professor and Mrs. Herbert
Bruce, of Cardiff.

C. B.

Alton, Staffordshire,
14 September, 19 10.



CONTENTS



PAGE
PREFACE Vii



CHAPTER I

EARLY DAYS, 1630-49

Birth and christening of Charles — Stories of his chiJShood —
Lord Newcastle and Brian Duppa, his tutors — Succeeded
by Lord Hertford, he by Lord Berkshire — The Civil War —
Charles and James at Edgehill — The Prince of Wales at
Reading — Oxford — Cropredy Bridge — Newbury — Oxford
again — He is made General of the Western Association —
Travels by Devizes and Bath to Bristol — Mrs. Wyndham —
The Prince in Devonshire and Cornwall — Goes to the
Scilly Isles — Debates as to Charles' ultimate destination —
Lady Fanshavve's Account of the Scilly Isles and of Jersey
— The Prince in Jersey — His household and occupations —
He goes to France — His cool reception — His personal
appearance — Mile, de Montpensier — Escape of James of
York from England — Attempted sea "fight between the
Prince and Lord Warwick's fleet — Paris in the Fronde —
Poverty of Henrietta Maria — Gilles de Retz — Prince
Charles stays with the Prince of Orange—Murder of King
Charles— Effect upon the Cavaliers and upon Charles II. .



CHAPTER II

1649-51

Charles proclaimed in Scotland — Montrose— Sophia, Princess
Palatine — Embassy to Spain — Death of Dorislaus — Mile,
de Montpensier — Her opinion of Charles and James —
Charles goes to Jersey — Privations of the Court — Return to
France— The King at Ghent— The " Pomme d'Or»— At
Breda — Treaty of Breda — Death of Montrose — Charles goes
to Scotland — His treatment — Secret interview of the King
and Dean King — Battle of Dunbar — Charles' good manage-
ment in Scotland — The King marches to England — Arrives
at Worcester — Battle of Worcester and defeat of the King
— Traditions of his escape 29



X CHARLES II AND HIS COURT

CHAPTER III

"after WORCESTER FIGHT"

PAGE

Sidbury Gate — St. Martin's Gate — Barboume Bridge — Kinver
Edge — Whiteladies — Hobbal Grange — A night walk — At
Mr. Woolfe's— Back at Boscobel— Royal Oak— Mr. Whit-
greave of Moseley and Mr. Huddleston — At Bentley with
Colonel Lane — The ride to Bristol — The blacksmith be-
fooled — Charles and the Meat-Jack — The King discovered
at Bristol — He goes to Colonel Wyndham's at Trent — Jane
Lane — Charmouth — Bridport — Broadwindsor — Heale
House, Salisbury — The ride to Brighton — The " George "
at Brighton — Mine host — The skipper — Charles lands at
Fecamp — Rouen — Paris 50



CHAPTER IV

1651-60 — THE SECOND EXILE

Charles arrives at Paris ; his treatment there — Mile, de Mont-
pensier — Duchesse de Chastillon — Privations of English
Court in Paris — Factions and quarrels — Charles goes to
Germany — Cromwell's spies — The King at Coin — Attempted
conversion of Duke of Gloucester — The '^Sealed Knot" —
Charles and Spain — He fights at Dunkirk-^Goes to Bruges
— Death of Cromwell — The King goes to Spain — Charles
and his sister — Declaration of Breda and proclamation of
Charles in England— He leaves Holland, and lands at Dover
— Journey to London 109



XTHAPTER V

THE RESTORATION— AND AFTER

The King's personal appearance and qualities — His accomplish-
ments and learning — Charles as author — His dogs — New-
castle's advice to the restored King — Monk — Charles at the
Council-table— The Regicides' fate— Act of Indemnity— The
Convention Parhament — The Cavalier Parliament and
religion — The Army — Finance — Charles and his divines —
Growth of scientific spirit-fCharles as scientistJ^-Touching
for the King's Evil — Superstitions — The King's Marriage —
Katherine of Bragan5a-4Court amusementSlHTunbridge
Wells—" Flatfoot, the Gudgeon-taker "—Second Dutch War
-The Plague— The Fire 14 T



CONTENTS xi



* CHAPTER VI

LONDON

PAGE

London under Charles II — Streets, taverns, shopping, travelling,
holidays, amusements — Dress and fashions — Games —
Furniture I94



CHAPTER VII

LA HAUTE POLITIQUE

Fall of Clarendon— Temple and the Triple Alliance— Ambassa-
dors — Henrietta, Duchess of Orleans — Treaty of Dover —
Marriage of William of Orange and Mar>' of York — Begin-
nings of Popish Plot— Marvell's " King's Speech ". . . 203



CHAPTER VIII

THE POPISH PLOT

Titus Gates — Shaftesbury, the Whigs, and the Green Ribbon
Club — Pope-burnings — The question of the succession —
Fall of Danby — Charles and the plot — Temple's Privy
Council — " King Monmouth " — Illness of Charles — Peti-
tioners and Abhorrers — King at Oxford — Dissolution of
Parliament, fall of Shaftesbury, and Whig plots — Charles
absolute — Bruce's account of the King's last illness and
death 221



CHAPTER IX
THE COURT

A week in a courtier's life— The great men at Court— James,
Duke of York— Henry, Duke of Gloucester— The Duke of
Buckingham — The Duke of Lauderdale — The Earl of
Rochester and Sir Charles Sedley— Earl of Dorset—" Mob
of Gentlemen "—Prince Rupert— Duke and Duchess of
Newcastle — Two Duchesses of York — Barbara Palmer —
Anne Fitzroy — Duchess Mazarin — Louise de Keroiialle —
Nell Gwyn— Character of Charles II 252

LIST OF WORKS CONSULTED 289

APPENDIX 295

INDEX 305



LIST OF ILLUSTRATIONS



Charles II Frontispiece

From the Painting by John Greenhill in the National Portrait
Gallery

*. PACING PAGE

Henrietta Maria of France, Queen of England . 3

From the Painting by Vandyck in the National Portrait Gallery
(Photo, Mansell)

Charles I 27

After the Painting by Vandyck at Windsor

James Graham, Marquis of Montrose .... 30

After the Painting by Houbraken

Charles II, about 165 i 65

From an Engraving by Faithorne, fornierly in the possession
of F. Roe, Esq.

Prince William II of Orange and his Bride, Princess

Mary Henrietta Stuart n6

From the Painting by Vandyck at Anasterdam

Charles II .146

From the Painting by Mary Beale in the National Portrait
Gallery

John Dryden 151

From the Painting by Sir Godfrey Kneller in the National
Portrait Gallery

Barbara Villiers, Countess of Castlemaine . . .177

From the Painting by Lely at Althorp, (Photo, Hanfstaengl)
ziii



xiv CHARLES II AND HIS COURT

FACING PAGE

Edward Hyde, Earl of Clarendon 202

After the Picture by SiR Peter Lely

Henrietta, Duchess of Orleans 208

From a Painting at Hardwick Hall. (Photo, Hanfstaengl)

James II 226

From the Painting by Kneller in the National Portrait Gallery

Charles II 251

From the Miniature by Samuel Cooper in the Wallace
Collection. (Photo, Hanfstaengl)

The Duke of Gloucester .

From a Miniature by Samuel Cooper

King Charles II

From a Miniature by Samuel Cooper -'

George Villiers, Duke of Buckingham . . . .262

From the Painting by Sir Peter Lely in the National Portrait
Gallery

John Wilmot, Earl of Rochester ..... 269

From the Painting by William Wissing in the National
Portrait Gallery



261



CHARLES II AND HIS
COURT

CHAPTER I
EARLY DAYS, 1630-49

" And that bis birth should be more singular, ••
At noon of day was seen a silver star,"

Herrick, Pastoral Upon the Birth of Prince Charles,

Birth and christening of Charles — Stories of his childhood — Lord
Newcastle and Brian Duppa, his tutors — Succeeded by Lord Hertford,
he by Lord Berkshire — The Civil War — Charles and James at Edgehill
— The Prince of Wales at Reading — Oxford — Cropredy Bridge —
Newbury^ — Oxford again — He is made General of the Western Associa-
tion — Travels by Devizes and Bath to Bristol — Mrs. Wyndham — The
Prince in Devonshire and Cornwall — Goes to the Scilly Isles — Debates
as to Charles' ultimate destination — Lady Fanshawe's Account of
the Scilly Isles and of Jersey — The Prince in Jersey — His household
and occupations — He goes to France — His cool reception — His per-
sonal appearance — Mile, de Montpensier — Escape of James of York
from England — Attempted Sea fight between the Prince and Lord
Warwick's fleet — Paris in the Fronde — Poverty of Henrietta Maria —
Gilles de Retz — Prince Charles stays with the Prince of Orange —
Murder of King Charles — Effect upon the Cavaliers and upon
Charles II.

THE husband of my son's nurse going to France
about some business of his wife, I write you this
letter by him, believing that you will be very
glad to ask him news of my son, of whom, I think, you
have seen the portrait that I sent the queen, my mother.
He is so ugly that I am ashamed of him ; but his size and
features supply the want of beauty. I wish you could see



2 , CHARLES II AND HIS COURT

the gentlernan, for he has no ordinary mien ; he is so
serious in all that he does that I cannot help deeming
him far wiser than myself. ... He is so fat that he is taken
for a year old, and he is only four months. His teeth are
already beginning to come. I will send you his portrait
as soon as he is a little fairer, for at present he is so dark
that I am ashamed of him." ^

This baby was Charles, Prince of Wales, born 29 May,
1630 ; his mother is describing him in a letter to her old
governess, Mme. de Motteville. His birth was greeted by
innumerable poems, most of them containing some allusion
to the star which had been visible as Charles I rode to
St. Paul's to give thanks for the Queen's delivery.^ From
this omen " most men presaged that that prince should be
of high undertakings and of no common glory among
kings." If he had spoken of this later in life, Charles II
might well have anticipated the words of Pope's Achilles,
" Portents and prodigies are lost on me ! " If, however,
the star was, as Lilly the astrologer declared, the planet
Venus, its appearance was certainly appropriate enough.

" The star-led birth of Charles the Prince," so auspicious
for European politics, was the prelude to one of the most
troubled and stormy youths ever spent by a royal child.
Charles' earliest years, however, were comparatively happy
and normal. At his birth he was declared Prince of Wales
and Earl of Chester ; and he received the Garter at Windsor
when he was eight. His christening was a sufficiently
splendid ceremony, even though certain hopes of prefer-
ment appear to have been disappointed. He was baptized
on Sunday " about four in the afternoon, at St. James', in
the King's little chapel (not in the Queen's), by my Lord
of London,^ Dean of the Chapel, assisted by the Bishop of

1 Strickland, viij. 60 ; Clayton, i. ; and Airy, pp. 4, 5.

2 Cf. Cowley's Ode on His Majesty's Restauration and Return^ st. i. ;
Dryden, Astrcca ReduXy 11. 288 sqg. ; and Annus Mirabilis, st. 18 j and
Waller's poem on St. James^ Park^ etc.

» Laud.



2 , CHARLES II AND HIS COURT

the gentlernan, for he has no ordinary mien; he is so
serious in all that he does that I cannot help deeming
him far wiser than myself. . . . He is so fat that he is taken
for a year old, and he is only four months. His teeth are
already beginning to come. I will send you his portrait
as soon as he is a little fairer, for at present he is so dark
that I am ashamed of him." ^

This baby was Charles, Prince of Wales, born 29 May,
1630 ; his mother is describing him in a letter to her old
governess, Mme. de Motteville. His birth was greeted by
innumerable poems, most of them containing some allusion
to the star which had been visible as Charles I rode to
St. Paul's to give thanks for the Queen's delivery .^ From
this omen " most men presaged that that prince should be
of high undertakings and of no common glory among
kings." If he had spoken of this later in life, Charles II
might well have anticipated the words of Pope's Achilles,
" Portents and prodigies are lost on me ! " If, however,
the star was, as Lilly the astrologer declared, the planet
Venus, its appearance was certainly appropriate enough.

" The star-led birth of Charles the Prince," so auspicious
for European politics, was the prelude to one of the most
troubled and stormy youths ever spent by a royal child.
Charles' earliest years, however, were comparatively happy
and normal. At his birth he was declared Prince of Wales
and Earl of Chester ; and he received the Garter at Windsor
when he was eight. His christening was a sufficiently
splendid ceremony, even though certain hopes of prefer-
ment appear to have been disappointed. He was baptized
on Sunday " about four in the afternoon, at St. James', in
the King's little chapel (not in the Queen's), by my Lord
of London,^ Dean of the Chapel, assisted by the Bishop of



1 Strickland, viij. 60 ; Clayton, i. ; and Airy, pp. 4, 5.

2 Cf. Cowley's Ode on His Majesty's Restauration and Return^ st. i. ;
Dryden, Astnca ReduXy 11. 288 sqq. ; and Annm Mirabilis^ st. 18 ; and
Waller's poem on St. James' Parky etc.

» Laud.




HENRIETTA MARIA OF FRANCE, QUEEN OF ENGLAND

FROM THE PAINTING BY VANDYCK IN THE NATIONAL PORTRAIT GALLERY



CHRISTENING 3

Norwich, almoner. The gossips were the French King,
the Palsgrave, and the Queen-Mother of France ; the
deputies, the Duke of Lennox, Marquis Hamilton, and
the Duchess of Richmond, which last was exceedingly
bountiful. The ordnance and chambers of the Tower were
discharged, the bells did ring, and at night were in the
streets plenty of flaming bonfires. The Duchess was sent
for by 3 lords, divers knights and gentlemen, 6 footmen,
and a coach with 6 horses plumed (all the Queen's), and
alighted not without the gate, but within the court.
Her retinue were 6 women, and gentlemen I know not
how many. But all, of both sexes, were clad in white
satin, garnished with crimson, and crimson silk-stockings.
I hear not of any presents from the gossips ; but the
Duchesse for her own particular, presented to the Queen
for the Prince, a jewel estimated at seven or 8000 ;^ ; to the
Welch^ nurse a chain of rubies estimated at 200 ;^ ; to the
midwife and dry nurse, store of massy plate ; to the 6
rockers, each a fair cup, a salt, and a dozen of spoons.
All the Lords also gave plate to the nurse. Besides, the
Duchess gave to every knight and gentleman of the
Queen's who came for her, and brought her back to her
house in the Strand, 50 pieces ; to the coachman 20, and
to every of the 6 footmen, 10 pieces. There were neither
lords nor knights made that I hear of, as there was said
there would be." ^

In spite of the obvious reasons for such a description,
we need not distrust Eglesfield's glowing account of
Charles' good temper and genius as a child, since it is so
well confirmed by the Prince's later life. Certain incidents
of his childhood are all that remain to us, and not un-
naturally, they are all interesting. "When he was but
very young, he had a very strange and unaccountable

^ Qy. Melch = milch ? Or more probably Welsh, as the usual custom
was for the Prince of Wales to have a Welsh nurse.

2 Mr. Sam.' Meddus to Mr. Jos. Meade, 2 July, 1630; ap. Peck,
Desiderata Curiosa, ed. 1736 ; ij. 36, and quoted in Captain Clayton's Personal
History of Charles II, ed. 1859, vol. i. p. 41.



4 CHARLES II AND HIS COURT

fondness to a wooden billet, without which in his arms he
would never go abroad or lie down in his bed ; from which
the more observing sort of people gathered that when he
came to years of maturity either oppressors or blockheads
would be his greatest favourites ; or else that when he
came to reign he would either be like Jupiter's log for
everybody to deride and condemn ; or that he would rather
choose to command his people with a club than rule them
by the sword." Though afterwards so fine an athlete,
Charles as a little child was forced to wear iron supports
for his legs, which at length so oppressed his spirits, that
an old rocker took it upon herself to remove and hide the
irons, telling the Countess of Dorset, the head nurse, that
she would take the responsibility for the action. The
King was at first angry, but on being reminded that Lady
Cary had done the same with him in his childhood, with
good results, allowed the Prince to leave the irons off. In
spite of this early weakness, and a broken arm, fever, and
jaundice, in his tenth year, Charles grew gradually stronger,
and at ten " he would ride leaping horses, and such as
would overthrow others and manage them with the greatest
skill and dexterity, to the admiration of all that beheld
him."i

His advance in health and strength he owed to the
Earl of Newcastle, who, together with Brian Duppa,^ was
appointed his tutor in April, 1637. These two early
guides, unlike their successors, Hertford and Berkshire,
were, perhaps, the best that could have been chosen for
the young Prince. Clarendon says of Newcastle that he
was " a very fine gentleman, active and full of courage, and
most accomplished in those qualities of horsemanship,
dancing, and fencing, which accompany a good breeding.
Besides that he was amorous of poetry and music, in

* Memoirs of the Duke of Newcastle, by his wife.

' Then Bishop of Salisbury, and afterwards Bishop of Winchester. Charles
always retained an affection for the Bishop, and visited him on his death-bed,
and received his blessing.



NEWCASTLE'S INSTRUCTIONS 5

which he indulged the greatest part of his time. He loved
monarchy, as it was the foundation and support of his own
greatness ; and the Church, as it was well constituted for
the splendour and security of the Crown ; and religion, as
it cherished and maintained that order and obedience that
was necessary to both." ^ Newcastle was a little worldly,
a little too stiff and ceremonious, a little too conscious of
his own magnificence and worth, but one of the most faith-
ful and efficient servants of Charles I. He left England
after his defeat at Marston Moor, where his " white-coats "
died in their ranks, and we shall meet him again, enter-
taining Charles II at Antwerp. His instructions to his
royal pupil have been preserved and are extremely
interesting, not only from the light they throw on New-
castle's opinions, but also from the comparison which they
inevitably suggest between their advice and Charles'
subsequent actions and course of life. The letter is as
follows :^ "May it please your Highness — since it pleased
your most gracious father, his sacred Majesty, to think me
worthy to be your governor, I will justify his Majesty's
choice ; for, what I may want in abilities I will make up
with fidelity and duty to his Majesty, in diligence and
service to you. Then for your education, sir, it is fit you
should have some languages, though I confess I would
rather have you study things than words, matter than
language ; for seldom a critic in many languages hath
time to study sense, for words ; and best he is, or can be,
but a living dictionary. Besides, I would not have you
too studious, for too much contemplation spoils action,
and virtue consists in that. What you read, I would have
it history, and the best chosen histories, that so you might
compare the dead with the living ; for the same humours

^ History of Rebellion.

' From a copy preserved with the Royal Letters in Harl. MS. 6988,
Art. 62. Printed by Ellis, Original Letters^ ser. i. vol. iij. p. 288, and by
C. H. Firth, in his edition of the Life of Duke of Newcastle^ pp. 184-187.
Quoted by Airy, Charles 11^ pp. 9-11.



6 CHARLES II AND HIS COURT

is now as was then ; there is no alteration but in names,
and though you meet not with a Caesar for the Emperor of
the whole world, yet he may have the same passions in
him ; and you are not to compare fortunes so much as
humours, wit, and judgment ; and thus you shall see the
excellency and errors both of Kings and subjects ; and
though you are young in years, yet living by your wading
in all those times, be older in wisdom and judgment than
Nature can afford any man to be without this help. For
the arts, I would have you know them so far as they are
of use, and especially those that are most proper for war
and use ; but whensoever you are too studious your con-
templation will spoil your government, for you cannot be
a good contemplative man and a good commonwealth's
man ; therefore, take heed of too much book. Beware of
too much devotion for a King, for one may be a good man,
but a bad King ; and how many will history represent to
you that in seeming to gain the kingdom of heaven have
lost their own ; and the old saying is, that short prayers
pierce heaven's gates ; but if you be not religious (and not
only seem so, but be so), God will not prosper you ; and if
you have no reverence to Him, why should your subjects
have any to you. At the best, you are accounted, for
your greatest honour. His servant. His deputy. His
anointed, and you owe as much reverence and duty to
Him as we owe to you ; and why, nay justly, may He not
punish you for want of reverence and service to Him, if
you fail in it, as well as you to punish us ; but this subject
I leave to the right reverend Father in God, Lord Bishop
of Chichester, your worthy tutor : your tutor, sir, wherein
you are most happy, since he hath no pedantry in him ;
his learning he makes right use of, neither to trouble him-
self with it nor his friends ; reads men as well as books ;
and goes the next way to everything that he should, and
that is what he would, for his will is governed by that law ;
the purity of his wit doth not spoil the serenity of his
judgment; travelled, which you shall perceive by his



RELIGION IN A PRINCE 7

wisdom and fashion more than by his relations ; and in a
word strives as much discreetly to hide the scholar in him,
as other men's follies to shew it ; and is a right gentleman,
such a one as a man should be. But, sir, to fall back
again to your reverence at prayers, so far as concerns
reason and your advantage is my duty to tell you ; then I
say, sir, were there no heaven or hell, you shall see the
disadvantage for your government ; if you have no rever-
ence at prayers, what will the people have, think you ?
They go according to the example of the Princes ; if
they have none, then they have no obedience to God ;
there they will easily have none to your Highness ; no
obedience, no subjects ; no subjects — then youi^ power is
off that side, and whether it be in one or more then that's
King, and thus they will turn tables with you.^ Of the
other side, if any be Bible mad, overmuch burned with
fiery zeal, they may think it a service to God to destroy
you and say the Spirit moved them and bring some example
of a king with a hard name in the Old Testament. Thus
one way you may have a civil war, the other a private
treason ; and he that cares not for his own life is master of
another man's. For books thus much more ; the greatest
clerks are not the wisest men ; and the great troublers
of the world, the greatest captains, were not the greatest
scholars ; neither have I known bookworms great states-
men ; some have heretofore and some are now, but they
study men more now than books, or else they would prove
but silly statesmen. For a mere scholar,^ there is nothing
so simple for this world. The reason is plain, for divinity
teaches what we should be, not what we are ; so doth
moral philosophy, and many philosophical worlds* and

^ Newcastle may seem here to be too much a follower of Machiavelli or
the Bacon of the essays, but he is deliberately confining himself to the worldly
point of view.

"^ Cf. Bishop Earle's Microcosmographie (1628-33), inuch read at this time,
ed, Arber, 1895, p. 40. "A downe right Scholler." This same Earle was
afterwards Prince Charles' tutor in Paris, 1646,



10 CHAK;.ES II AND HIS COURT

before you, or to cry every morning that you are mortal,
for I would not have you fall into a divine melancholy, to
be an anchorite or a capuchin, or with a philosophical



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