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Reign of Henry the Eighth - (Continued)


The War with France - The Earl of Surrey Invades that Country - State of France - The gallant Conduct of Francis I. - Revolt of the Duke of Bourbon - Pope Adrian VI. dies - Clement VII. elected - Appearance of Luther - Henry writes against him - Is styled by the Pope "Defender of the Faith " - Progress of the War - Francis I. taken . Prisoner at the Battle of Pavia - Change of Feeling at the English. Court - Treaty with France - Wolsey grows unpopular - Francis I. regains his Liberty - Italian League, inch .ding France and England, against the Emperor - Fall of the Duke of Bourbon at the Siege of Rome - Sacking of Rome, and Capture of the Pope - The Pope escapes - Henry applies to his Holiness for a Divorce from the Queen - Anno Boleyn - War declared against Spain - Cardinal Campeggio arrives in England to decide the Legality of Henry's Marriage with Catherine - The Queen refuses all Negotiation on the Subject - Henry's growing Intimacy with Anne Boleyn, and Discontent with Wolsey - Cranmer's Advice regarding the Divorce - Fall of Wolsey - His Banishment from Court, and Death - The Queen's Divorce agitated in Parliament - Opposed by the Clergy - The Queen Inflexible - Sir Thomas More resigns - Treaty with France - The King's Marriage with Anne Boleyn - Cranmer made Archbishop - The Pope Reverses the Divorce - Separation of England from Rome.
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On the departure of the emperor, Henry commanded the Earl of Surrey to scour the Channel before him; and Charles, out of compliment to Henry, named Surrey, who was Lord Admiral of England, also admiral of his own fleet of one hundred and eighty sail. Surrey, haying seen Charles safely landed in Spain, returned along the coast of France, ravaging it on all accessible points. He landed at Cherbourg, in Normandy, burnt the town of Morlaix, in Brittany, and many other maritime villages, houses of the people, and castles of the aristocracy. This was preparatory to the great invasion which Henry contemplated. For this purpose 'he had recalled Surrey from. Ireland, where he had conducted himself with great ability, repressed the disorders of the natives, and won the esteem of the chief population. Henry now gave him the command of the army destined to invade France. That army, Henry boasted, should consist of forty thousand men; but the question was, whence the money was to come for its assembly and payment. The Field of the Cloth of Gold, and the entertainment of the emperor, following on many other extravagances, had entirely dissipated the treasures which his father had left him; and, as he was now endeavouring to rule without a parliament, he was compelled to resort to those unconstitutional measures of forced loans, which had always covered with odium the monarchs who applied to them.

In this unpopular attempt Wolsey was his instrument, and the work he had now to do ensured him a plentiful growth of dislike. In the first place, he exacted a loan of 20,000 from the merchants of London, and scarcely had he obtained possession of it, when he summoned the leading citizens before him, and demanded fresh advances. On the 20th of August, 1522, the lord mayor, aldermen, and the most substantial merchants of London appeared before him, to whom he announced that the king had sent commissioners into the whole realm, to inquire into the actual rents of the lands in each township, what were the names of the owners and occupiers, and what the value of each man's movable property. According to his account, a new Doomsday Book was in preparation ; and ho, moreover, informed them that his majesty had ordered a muster in the maritime counties of all the men betwixt the ages of sixteen and sixty, to enrol their names, and the names of the lords of whom they held their lands. "For," said the cardinal, "the King of France is preparing to invade these realms" - a most gratuitous falsehood - "wherefore," continued Wolsey, after making this parade of the universal order, " certify to me the number of all such amongst you as be worth 100 and upwards, to the intent I may swear them of their values; for first, the king asketh of you your loving hearts and due obedience; and when the value is taken, he desireth only the tenth part of goods and lands, which is the least reasonable thing yon can aid your prince with. I think every one of yon will offer lie less. As for the spirituality, every man is in the shires sworn, and shall gladly pay the fourth part to the king and live on the three parts. Now to your part, I am sure you will not grudge; therefore name me the men of substance, and for the meaner sort meaner commissioners shall be appointed." "Oh, my lord," said the aldermen, "it is not two months since the king had of the City 20.000 in ready money, whereby the City is very bad of money." "Well," replied the cardinal, "the thing must be done, and therefore go about it," The deputation returned to the City in deep dejection, and made out their lists of such as were merchants and dealers, and reputed men of substance. These men, then, themselves waited on the cardinal, and besought him not to put them to their oath as to their real amount of property, for that It was difficult for themselves to make a correct estimate of it, and that, in fact, many an honest man's credit was more than his substance. Wolsey replied that he "dare swear that the substance of London was no less than two millions of gold." From this it was obvious that the cardinal expected from them at least 200,000. But the citizens replied, "Would to God the City were so rich, but it is sore afflicted by the occupying of strangers." The cardinal promised to see that rectified, and, moreover, that their loans should be repaid them out of the first subsidy voted by Parliament, which it was intended to call. But the victims did not appear much cheered by these assurances: they knew that Henry was not fond of calling parliaments. If lie 'meant it, why borrow money, when it could be voted? And they went away, saying that for the last loan some lent a fifth, and now to ask a tenth again was too much.

By these means, however, money enough was raised to put an army in motion. About the middle of August the Earl of Surrey landed at Calais with 12,000 men, paid by the king, and 3,600 volunteers. There he was joined by a body of German, Flemish, and Spanish horse, making a total force of 16,000. At the-head of these he advanced through Picardy and Artois, desolating the country as he went, burning the defenceless towns, the castles of the nobles, and the huts of the peasants, and destroying whatever they could not carry off as spoil. They left the fortified cities, making no attempt except against Hesdin, which they soon quitted,, finding their artillery not of weight enough. The French, under the Duke de Vendoine, avoided a general engagement, but they harassed the outskirts of the army, cut off the supplies, and occasionally a number of stragglers. The weather was the great ally of the French, for it was extremely rainy and cold, and occasioned dysentery to break out in the camp. On the appearance of this fatal foe, the foreign troops hastily retired into Bethune, and Surrey soon after led back his main body to Calais, having done the French much mischief, but obtained no single advantage except the seizure of a quantity of booty.

Francis, meantime, had not only kept his army hovering' in front of the invaders, but he had sent active emissaries to rouse the Irish and Scotch, and thus to distract the attention of the English. In Ireland he turned his attention to the Earl of Desmond, who still maintained in a great measure his independence of the English crown. Francis offered Mm an annual pension, on condition that he should take up arms in Ireland against the English power, and the earl, moreover, seduced by the promise that a French army should be sent over, engaged to join it, and never to lay down his arms till he had won for himself a strong dominion in the island, and the remainder for Pilchard do la Pole, the heir of the house of York. But Francis having obtained his object by the very alarm created by this negotiation, never sent any troops, never paid the Earl of Desmond any annuity, and the unfortunate chieftain was left to pay the penalty of his rash credulity in the vengeance of the English Government.

In Scotland affairs assumed a more formidable aspect, After the return of Margaret the queen-mother front. England, she quarrelled with her weak but headstrong husband the Earl of Angus, and in 1521 sent and invited her old antagonist the Duke of Albany to return to Scotland from France, promising to support him at the head of the Government. Nothing could suit the views of France better than this, for it was already menaced by Henry of England. Albany landed at Gairloch on the 19th of November, and thence hastened to the Queen at Stirling. This strange, bold, and dissimulating woman, who had all the imperiousness and the sensuality of a Tudor, received him with open arms, and entered at once on such terms of familiarity with him as scandalised all Scotland.

Her husband and Ms relatives, the Douglases, being summoned by the regent before Parliament, fled towards the borders, and took refuge in the kirk of Steyle, and by means of the celebrated Gawain Douglas, the Bishop of Dunkeld, and one of Scotland's finest poets, who was the uncle of Angus, the fugitives opened a communication with Henry of England. The bishop represented the conduct of Margaret of the most flagitious kind, attributing to her the design of marrying Albany, and setting aside her own son. It was even asserted, and Lord Dacre, warden of the Western Marches, joined in the assertion, that the life of the young king was in danger, and as much from his own mother as from Albany. There is 110 question that the conduct of Margaret was most disgraceful, and though Albany was anxious to establish quietness and order in Scotland, and to obtain peace with England, the emissaries of Henry took care to foment strife betwixt the nobles and the Government. Lord Dacre was - according to the system introduced by Henry VII., and continued so long as there was a Tudor on the throne of England - plentifully supplied with money to bribe the most powerful nobles, especially the Homes, to harass the Government by their factions. The state papers which have been published give the most unquestionable testimony to this fact. Wolsey, writing to Henry, says he has instructed Dacre "to entertain the Homes and other rebels after his accustomable manner, so that they may continue the divisions and seditions in Scotland, whereby the said Duke of Albany may be put in danger; and though some money be employed for the entertainment of the said Homes and rebels, it will quit the cost at length, wherein I have amply instructed the said Lord Dacre."

It was in vain, therefore, that Queen Margaret wrote to her brother, the King of England, protesting that the accusations against her were base and abominable calumnies, that the Duke of Albany ruled by the choice and advice of Parliament., and that without him there would be no peace in Scotland, nor safety for the king or herself. Henry only replied by upbraiding her with living in shameful adultery, and insisting that Albany should quit Scotland,, or that he would make war upon it. He did not stop there - he made the same demand of Parliament, and hearing that Margaret was applying to the Pope for a divorce from Angus, in order to marry Albany, he exerted all his influence with the Church to prevent it. The Scottish Parliament, notwithstanding it contained many traitors, made such by Henry's gold, yet rejected his proposition for the dismissal of Albany: whereupon Henry ordered all Scottish subjects found in England to be driven with insult across the borders, having a white cross marked upon their backs; and at the same time that he sent Surrey across to France, in the spring of 1522, he also bade the Earl of Shrewsbury march across the Tweed to punish the Scots. Shrewsbury obeyed the order with great celerity, and speedily laid waste the fine pastoral country round Kelso, but was met by a superior force and driven back.

Instead, therefore, of an invasion of Scotland by the English, Henry was threatened with a descent of the Scots on his own kingdom, whilst the gallant Surrey was absent in France. The Duke of Albany, incensed at the reproaches of Henry regarding his connection with Queen Margaret, at his demands for his extradition, and at the ferocious inroad of the Earl of Shrewsbury, declared war against England, with the consent of Parliament. He called for the muster of all the feudal force of the kingdom, and the call was answered with such promptness that he beheld himself at the head of 80,000 men. With such a force, nothing would have been easier to all appearance than to have overrun the north of England, left almost wholly destitute of defence. But though the Scottish people were in earnest, there was treason not only in the camp, but in the very tent of Albany. The money of Dacre was in the pockets of the most powerful nobles, who silently but actively spread disunion through his host; and worst of all, Margaret, who, like her brother, was continually roving in her affections from one person to another, was already weary of Albany, and was in covert communication with Lora Dacre, and betraying all the secrets and plans of Albany to him. It is said that Henry, through Lord Dacre, had completely corrupted the queen, probably by assisting her with money, but still more by offering to receive her again to his favour, and to secure her interests by marrying Mary, the Princess of England, to her son, the young King of Scots. Influenced by these hopes, the unprincipled queen exerted herself to weaken the measures of Albany, and to diminish the influence of France in the country as much as possible.

Albany, therefore, though he advanced to the banks of the Tweed, and even reached within a few miles of Carlisle, found the spirit of his host continually on the decline. On the other hand, Lord Dacre had expended his money in extensive bribery, and was almost destitute of soldiers; yet he pretended that a great army was on the march to him, which would show the Scots another Flodden Field, and so imposed on Albany, that he was willing to treat, instead of being ready to fight. He engaged to disband his forces, if Dacre would engage to keep back the imaginary advancing troops of England. Wolsey, who was watching in the northern counties with deep anxiety the result of this contest between military multitudes and political cunning, could not sufficiently express his astonishment, as he saw the stupendous armament of Scotland melt away before the empty bugbears of Lord Dacre's creation. "By the great wisdom and policy of my Lord Dacre, and by means of the safe-conduct lately sent at the desire and contemplation of the Queen of Scots, the said Duke of Albany hath, our Lord be praised, not only forborne his invasion-, but also dissolved his army; which, being dispersed} neither shall nor can, for this year, be gathered or assembled again," And the cardinal proceeds to give us a specimen of the easy nature of his political morality, in saying, "And yet the said abstinence (armistice) concluded by my Lord Dacre, he not having your authority for the same, nothing bindeth your grace; but, at your liberty, ye may pursue your wars against the said Scots, if it shall be thought to your highness convenable." On the 11th of September, 1522, the treaty betwixt Albany and Dacre was concluded, and Albany went over to France for fresh supplies of men and money, leaving the Earls of Huntly, Arran, and Argyle to administer affairs during his absence. Thus, about the same time, Henry saw his French and his Scotch campaign for that year terminated.

His great and difficult business was now to raise the necessary funds for prosecuting his further designs against France. For eight years he had forborne to call a Parliament, but to postpone a summons of this engine of supply further was not possible. He had pushed to the extreme point all the modes of extracting funds from his subjects, legal and illegal; and the reluctance with which his last forced loan had been conceded, and the solemn promises which he had made to call a Parliament, left him no alternate. No king who ever reigned had a higher notion of the kingly prerogative, and the hearty commendation he afterwards bestowed on Charles Y. for destroying the last vestiges of free institutions in Spain, showed plainly what he would fain have carried out in this country. But sturdy as was his Tudor soul, he found that the people of England had an equally stubborn will, and on the loth of April, 1523, he summoned a Parliament at Blackfriars, London, where Wolsey sat at his feet as chancellor.

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Pictures for Reign of Henry the Eighth - (Continued)

Old Greenwich
Old Greenwich >>>>
King Henry and his Council
King Henry and his Council >>>>
Francis I
Francis I >>>>
Louise reading of the Capture of the King
Louise reading of the Capture of the King >>>>
Rhodes in the Sixteenth Century
Rhodes in the Sixteenth Century >>>>
Boudoir of Anne Boleyn
Boudoir of Anne Boleyn >>>>
Residence of Anne Boleyn
Residence of Anne Boleyn >>>>
Entrance to Wolsey's College
Entrance to Wolsey's College >>>>
Queen Anne Boleyn
Queen Anne Boleyn >>>>
Entry of Anne Boleyn into London
Entry of Anne Boleyn into London >>>>
Henry VIII. dancing with Anne Boleyn.
Henry VIII. dancing with Anne Boleyn. >>>>
Antechamber in Hever Castle
Antechamber in Hever Castle >>>>
The Trial of Queen Catherine
The Trial of Queen Catherine >>>>
The Dismissal of Cardinal Wolsey
The Dismissal of Cardinal Wolsey >>>>
Wolsey at Leicester
Wolsey at Leicester >>>>
Ruins of Leicester Abbey
Ruins of Leicester Abbey >>>>
Thomas Cranmer
Thomas Cranmer >>>>
Private Marriage of Anne Boleyn to Henry VIII
Private Marriage of Anne Boleyn to Henry VIII >>>>
Cardinal Pole
Cardinal Pole >>>>
Place of Execution within the Tower of London
Place of Execution within the Tower of London >>>>

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