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upon a truce for some months following. But the King of Scotland, though he would not formally retract his judgment of Perkin, wherein he had engaged himself so far; yet in his private opinion, upon often speech with the Englishmen, and divers other advertisements, began to 5 suspect him for a counterfeit. Wherefore in a noble fashion he called him unto him, and recounted the benefits and favours that he had done him in making him his ally, and in provoking a mighty and opulent King by an offensive war in his quarrel, for the space of two years to- 10 gether; nay more, that he had refused an honourable
peace, whereof he had a fair offer, if he would have delivered him ; and that, to keep his promise with him, he had deeply offended both his nobles and people, whom he might not hold in any long discontent: and therefore re- 15 quired him to think of his own fortunes, and to choose out some fitter place for his exile : Telling him withal, that he could not say, but the English had forsaken him before the Scottish, for that, upon two several trials, none had declared themselves on his side ; but nevertheless he 20 would make good what he said to him at his first receiving, which was that he should not repent him for putting himself into his hands ; for that he would not cast him. off, but help him with shipping and means to transport him where he should desire. Perkin, not descending at 25 all from his stage-like greatness, answered the King in few words, that he saw his time was not yet come; but: whatsoever his fortunes were, he should both think and speak honour of the King. Taking his leave, he would not think on Flanders, doubting it was but hollow ground 30 for him since the treaty of the archduke, concluded the year before ;
but took his lady, and such followers as would, not leave him, and sailed over into Ireland.
This twelfth year of the King, a little before this time, Pope Alexander, who loved best those Princes that were furthest off, and with whom he had least to do, taking very
thankfully the King's late entrance into league for the 5 defence of Italy, did remunerate him with an hallowed
sword and cap of maintenance, sent by his nuncio. Pope Innocent had done the like, but it was not received in that glory: for the King appointed the mayor and his
brethren to meet the Pope's orator at London-bridge, and 10 all the streets between the bridge-foot and the palace of
Paul's, where the King then lay, were garnished with the citizens, standing in their liveries. And the morrow after, being Allhallows day, the King, attended with many of his
prelates, nobles, and principal courtiers, went in procession 15 to Paul's, and the cap and sword were borne before him.
And after the procession, the King himself remaining seated in the quire, the lord archbishop, upon the greece of the quire, made a long oration : setting forth the great
ness and eminency of that honour which the Pope, in 20 these ornaments and ensigns of benediction, had done the
King; and how rarely, and upon what high deserts, they used to be bestowed : And then recited the King's principal acts and merits, which had made him appear worthy, in the eyes of his Holiness, of this great honour.
All this while the rebellion of Cornwall, whereof we have spoken, seemed to have no relation to Perkin; save that perhaps Perkin's proclamation had stricken upon the right vein, in promising to lay down exactions and pay
ments, and so had made them now and then have a kind 30 thought on Perkin.
But now these bubbles by much stirring began to meet, as they use to do upon the top of water. The King's lenity by that time the Cornish rebels, who were taken and pardoned, and, as it was said,
many of them sold by them that had taken them, for twelve pence and two shillings apiece, were come down into their country, had rather emboldened them, than reclaimed them; insomuch as they stuck not to say to their neighbours and countrymen, that the King did well to 5 pardon them, for that he knew he should leave few subjects in England, if he hanged all that were of their mind: and began whetting and inciting one another to renew the commotion. Some of the subtilest of them, hearing of Perkin's being in Ireland, found means to send to him to 10 let him know, that if he would come over to them, they would serve him.
When Perkin heard this news, he began to take heart again, and advised upon it with his council, which were principally three; Herne a mercer, that had fled for debt; 15 Skelton a tailor, and Astley a scrivener ; for secretary Frion was gone.
These told him, that he was mightily overseen, both when he went into Kent, and when he went into Scotland; the one being a place so near London, and under the King's nose; and the other a nation so dis- 20 tasted with the people of England, that if they had loved him never so well, yet they would never have taken his part in that company. But if he had been so happy as to have been in Cornwall at the first, when the people began to take arms there, he had been crowned at West- 25 minster before this time. For, these Kings, as he had now experience, would sell poor Princes for shoes. But he must rely wholly upon people ; and therefore advised him to sail over with all possible speed into Cornwall : which accordingly he did ; having in his company four 30 small barks, with some sixscore or sevenscore fighting men. He arrived in September at Whitsand Bay, and forthwith came to Bodmin, the blacksmith's town; where there
assembled unto him to the number of three thousand men of the rude people. There he set forth a new proclamation, stroking the people with fair promises, and humouring them
with invectives against the King and his government. And 5 as it fareth with smoke, that never loseth itself till it be at
the highest; he did now before his end raise his style, entitling himself no more Richard duke of York, but Richard the fourth, King of England. His council advised him by
all means to make himself master of some good walled 10 town; as well to make his men find the sweetness of rich
spoils, and to allure to him all loose and lost people, by like hopes of booty; as to be a sure retreat to his forces, in case they should have any ill day, or unlucky chance
in the field. Wherefore they took heart to them, and went 15 on, and besieged the city of Exeter, the principal town for strength and wealth in those parts.
When they were come before Exeter, they forbare to use any force at the first, but made continual shouts and outcries
to terrify the inhabitants. They did likewise in divers places 20 call and talk to them from under the walls, to join with
them, and be of their party; telling them, that the King would make them another London, if they would be the first town that should acknowledge him. But they had not
the wit to send to them, in any orderly fashion, agents or 25 chosen men, to tempt them and to treat with them. The
citizens on their part shewed themselves stout and loyal subjects : neither was there so much as any tumult or division amongst them, but all prepared themselves for a
valiant defence, and making good the town. For well they 30 saw, that the rebels were of no such number or power, that
they needed to fear them as yet; and well they hoped, that before their numbers increased, the King's succours would come in. And, howsoever, they thought it the extremest of evils, to put themselves at the mercy of those hungry and disorderly people. Wherefore setting all things in good order within the town, they nevertheless let down with cords, from several parts of the walls privily, several mes sengers, that if one came to nischance, another might pass 5 on, which should advertise the King of the state of the town, and implore his aid. Perkin also doubted, that succours would come ere long; and therefore resolved to use his utmost force to assault the town. And for that purpose having mounted scaling-ladders in divers places upon the 10 walls, made at the same instant an attempt to force one of the gates. But having no artillery nor engines, and finding that he could do no good by ramming with logs of timber, nor by the use of iron bars, and iron crows, and such other means at hand, he had no way left him but to set one of 15 the gates on fire, which he did. But the citizens well perceiving the danger, before the gate could be fully consumed, blocked the gate, and some space about it on the inside, with faggots and other fuel, which they likewise set on fire, and so repulsed fire with fire; and in the meantime raised 20 up rampiers of earth, and cast up deep trenches, to serve instead of wall and gate. And for the scaladoes, they had so bad success, as the rebels were driven from the walls with the loss of two hundred men.
The King when he heard of Perkin's siege of Exeter, 25 made sport with it, and said to them that were about him, that the King of rake-hells was landed in the west, and that he hoped now to have the honour to see him, which he could never yet do. And it appeared plainly to those that were about the King, that he was indeed much joyed with 30 the news of Perkin's being in English ground, where he could have no retreat by land; thinking now, that he should be cured of those privy stitches, which he had long had