Page images

ner was the only one subjected to impri- | things would lead to further abuses ; they sonment: he remained in the Marshal- remonstrated with Elizabeth, who unwillsea till his death, in 1569, indulging in ingly consented to their removal. She licentious expressions, and gross disor- was afterwards more fully aware of the derly conduct. When the pictures were necessity for showing her departure from shown to him, in the early editions of Fox's Popery; and Nowel, dean of St. Paul's, Acts and Monuments, which represented having caused a prayer-book adorned him inflicting tortures upon the Protestants with pictures of the Virgin and saints to with his own hands, the callous wretch be laid in her seat, as a new year's gift, viewed them with a laugh, and asked she openly reproved him in the vestry how the artist could depict him so well ? after service, declaring truly, that such He openly gloried in what he had done. ornaments were hinderances to devotion. His imprisonment, indeed, was necessary Matters of a secular nature now claim to screen him from popular indignation; attention. One of the proceedings in but the immediate cause was an intempe- parliament was to address the queen, rate memorial presented to the queen by urging her to select a husband, accomhimself and other bigoted Romanists, panying this request with strong exprescondemning the Reformation even as sions of loyalty and personal regard. The begun by Henry VIII., and stigmatizing queen replied in courteous terms, but the martyrs these prelates condemned said that she considered herself married to the flames, as malefactors suffering to her kingdom, and that at present her justly the Divine wrath. When the Po- desire was to have it inscribed on her pish prelates were summoned to declare tomb, “Here lies a queen who lived and whether they would obey the laws lately died a virgin." passed, archbishop Heath had the effron- One of the affairs most pressing was tery to tell the queen that she could not to make peace with France. Philip, desist from the suppression of heresy- finding that he could not rely on support meaning thereby the persecution of the from England, had already done this, Protestants--without exposing herself to but felt his honour concerned to extri-. a curse ! Elizabeth at once replied, in cate his ally from a war undertaken on the words of Joshua, “ As for me and his account. The main difficulty was my house, we will serve the Lord;" and respecting Calais. The French would declared her determination, together not relinquish this place, while to give with that of her parliament, to resist up the claim would annoy the national Popery.

feelings of the English. A treaty was at The vacant sees were filled up. Parker last made, by which Calais was to be was appointed archbishop of Canterbury, restored by France in eight years, under and others, his associates in taking refuge heavy pecuniary forfeitures. The Engon the continent, were nominated to va- lish government wisely resolved not to rious bishoprics. These excellent men forego the advantages to result from exerted themselves to promote the truth : peace to their exhausted kingdom, in they effected much, though far less than the vain endeavour to procure again a they desired ; for the general proceedings place, the possession of which was rather of government limited rather than en- an empty honour than a real benefit, and couraged them.

which increased the feeling of dissatisThe queen had suffered much from faction between the two countries. the principles of Popery, but she showed In this summer, the first of her reign, a desire to retain some of the ornaments, we find Elizabeth enjoying the country: ceremonials, and superstitious observ- For this purpose, she visited her palace, ances adopted mostly from heathenism in at Nonsuch, in Surrey, and other places, the early ages of the church, which made The annexed engraving represents Nonway for the grossest errors of Romanism. such, an edifice erected by Henry viii. Among them were the crucifix, and lights It is from an old picture, which also reburning on the communion-table, which presents the queen in her chariot, or Elizabeth for a time retained in her chapel: car. the former was a gross superstition con- The state of affairs in Scotland required nected with image worship; the latter the especial attention of Elizabeth. Mary was of less importance, but it was a prac- Queen of Scots had been affianced to tice of ancient pagan worship, and there- | the dauphin, and removed to France fore ought to be discarded by all Chris- when very young. Her marriage was tians. The bishops feared that these completed in 1557, when she was induced secretly to sign a deed, by which | alone the designs of France against Engshe conveyed to the King of France her land could be efficiently promoted. claims to the throne of England as well as The French commander caused Leith Scotland, in case she died without leaving to be fortified, which excited the public children. This document has been lately displeasure. The populace destroyed published. Her union with France could some monastic establishments, while the only be supported by discouraging the lords assembled at Stirling, and took Reformation in Scotland, and persecut- measures that the kingdom should not ing the reformers in that country. At be reduced to a mere province of France, this juncture, Elizabeth succeeded to the in which the Reformation could be rithrone of England, when an intention gidly suppressed. directly to interfere with her, was mani- The lords then called a parliament, fested by the assumption of her regal which met at Edinburgh, and deposed the title and arms by Mary and her husband, regent; but Knox urged that her misas already mentioned. They had not conduct should not operate against the albeen assumed during the preceding reign, legiance they owed to Mary as their sotherefore it was plain that the insignia vereign. They also denounced the French were not merely borne as indicating a as enemies to their country. Thus hosdistant claim to the succession, but be- tilities were decidedly begun in Scotland, ing taken immediately upon the death of and it was evident that the result would Mary of England, they evidently were affect England. If the French were meant to imply that the bearers had a successful, England would be attacked, better right than that possessed by Eliza- the pretensions of Mary and Francis to beth. All who acknowledged the papal the English throne having been distinctly supremacy necessarily took this view. avowed. Under these circumstances, It is worse than idle to speak of the con- Elizabeth was obliged to take a part. test between Mary Stuart and Elizabeth, She assisted the Scottish Protestants as many do, assigning the cause to be with some supplies, but not till the petty female jealousies.

French were on the point of prevailing. The English armorial bearings were At this juncture, the English fleet enopenly displayed at a festival in Paris, tered the Firth of Forth, and stopped when the king, having engaged in a the advance of the French army. It was tilting-match, was mortally wounded by plain that Elizabeth had delayed this inthe shivers of a lance, by Montgome- terposition till the last moment; no dery, the captain of the Scotch guard. He sire but that of preserving her own kingdied July 10, and was succeeded by dom influenced her. She expressly stithe husband of Mary, Francis II. The pulated with the Scottish lords that they deceased, Henry 11., who was thus un- should maintain their allegiance to Mary, expectedly called to his account, had lately only seeking to be freed from French engaged with Philip and the Pope in ex- counsellors. There is no doubt that Elitensive designs to suppress the Reforma- zabeth interfered constantly with the aftion, and had just passed a decree, or- fairs of Scotland. This is represented dering all the Lutherans in his own domi- by Popish historians as unwarrantable, nions to be put to death. A few days and designed to foment civil wars in that before the death of Henry, he had or- kingdom : it was defended by Cecil, on dered a body of troops to be sent to the ground that such interference was Scotland, where the queen regent was necessary to avert danger from his counalready at issue with the chief nobility. try and his sovereign. He declared that She required absolute submission to the he thought it lawful to use the same measures directed by France, and the means of defence which the adversary English ambassador had learned it was used in offence. Here, as in many other intended to put the leading nobles to instances, we must regret that the state death. It was evident that the Scottish policy even of the most upright rulers, nobility and gentry would not be left to departs from the plain and simple declarthemselves to settle the differences which ations of Christianity. But it must be had arisen among them about religion; allowed that France was making great for these troops were despatched imme- use of Scotland to forward political dediately after the accession of Francis. signs against England, before the latter The Reformation in Scotland was to be took part in the Scottish civil dissencrushed by foreign interference ; thereby sions, as the only effectual way to meet those seasons of interest and gratification | ments! Leaning on a staff for support, which have fung a sunbeam in my path and walking.“ softly,” the breeze blowin days gone by. The more we remem- ing about their thin grey locks, they ber what we have enjoyed, the louder is dwell on the youth, the strength, and the call upon our thankfulness. Oh that activity of their by-gone days. Bear my heart were filled with praise, and my with them! Bear with them! mouth with thanksgiving !

It was at Christmas time that I set out There is another enjoyment, too, that on foot with two friends for Llantony I love to indulge ; and that is, the recrea- Abbey. We had twenty-one miles of untion of sketching a character with my pen. known ground to tramp over, at least Scores of such sketches I have by me, unknown to me, and my friends had but that no eyes but my own have ever seen. a very general knowledge of it; a heavy They will be found, perhaps, among a fall of snow which had taken place added mass of unconnected manuscripts when greatly to the fatigue of our journey, but the mortal part of Old Humphrey is laid we entered on our enterprise with light in the dust. It would have been a good hearts and cheerful spirits. True it is, thing for me through life if I had devoted that our feet were sadly clogged with half as much time to correcting my own snow, so that we lifted up our heavy character, as I have spent in observing heels like labouring men walking across the characters of others; but that has not a fresh-ploughed field; and then, again, been the case, and the consequence is, a the descending flakes driven in myriads frequent exhibition on my part of those full in our faces, somewhat impeded our infirmities that I so quickly detect in my progress, to say nothing of the kneeneighbours.

deep snow-drifts we had to encounter in Think not, however, that I delight to our occasional wanderings from the banquet on the failings of my friends : proper path; but these things are trifles this would be but an unlovely and un- when buoyant hearts are filled with the christian employment. It is the oddity, spirit of adventure. On we went, findthe peculiarity, rather than the infirmity ing amusement in our toil, and laughing of human nature that I love to portray. at each other's mishaps and difficulties. At times, indeed, a strong dash of shadow My friends were well educated. The mingles with my sketches; but if this be elder of the two had a sobriety mingled in the original, no marvel that it should with his cheerfulness that made him very appear in the copy. I will give you one companionable, and the younger added of my sketches now.

to his general buoyancy of heart, that I am about to describe humanity in a ready wit, which, when under the influnovel form; at least, in a shape that it ence of judgment and good nature, is does not commonly assume. When we always agreeable. An interesting entersee a miser clutching his money bags, prize is not the less pleasant when shared and looking around him suspiciously, we by agreeable companions. My Llantony are certain of his selfishness; when a trip is vividly impressed on my memory. dealer in any article unduly praises what I should be sorry to think that it was he would sell, we suspect him of the blotted from the memory of my comsame evil; but when a man, under the panions. guise of hospitality, offers us the best his As we trudged onwards, little incidents house affords, no wonder that we should occurred that gave an interest and variety be somewhat thrown off our guard. to our journey. A friendly discussion,

Many a wintry wind has blown over an anecdote, or an apt quotation from the Black Mountains, and many a fall of some favourite author; an allusion to the snow has fringed their rugged eminences past, or a speculation relating to the since I visited Llantony Abbey. It may future, by turns, called forth our conversbe that the Abbey of Llantony is known ational powers. How much of interest to you; but if not, it may be a treat to and pleasure is at times crowded into the you, on some future day, to visit its time- brief space of a single hour ! worn and desolated walls.

In a state of society, our every day In my time, I have been a capital pe- duties and occupations often mould us destrian; twenty miles have I tramped into positions foreign to our natures and before breakfast, and once I walked with inclinations, so that we appear other than a friend forty-seven miles on the last day we really are. In a friendly ramble, we of a lengthy excursion. Thus it is that are ourselves; restrictions vanish, and old men prate about their past achieve- we feel at liberty, a social feeling gathers around our hearts, and we think, speak, | ing with the dreary situation of his abode, and act in our natural character. There and the bleak mountains that rose around are in such seasons, buoyant emotions, his habitation. happy turns of thought, a disinterested- Up the stone steps of the residence of ness, and a baring of the bosom, if I may Mr. Hollowblast we climbed with some so speak, that are delightful to share and difficulty; for they were slippery and pleasant to reflect upon,

heaped with snow, and we were much In one place, we came to the very fatigued. My younger companion, who edge of a precipice, whose perpendicular had rolled up his trowsers to the tops of his depth must have been more than a hun- boots, cut a comical figure, lifting up his dred feet. A tree leaned over from the legs, as he did one after the other with his bank, and up this tree I foolishly climbed, hands, being unequal in any other way to to drop, from amid its branches, a stone win the postern gate or doorway of Mr. to the ground beneath. There are reck- Hollowblast's habitation. less moods wherein peril operates as a It was certainly an untimely hour, to charm on the youthful mind, alluring the say the least of it, for three weary pedesbounding heart to danger: no doubt you trians, with boots and stockings saturated have found it so as well as myself. with snow water, unexpectedly to apply

In a village through which we passed, for an asylum in so lonely a place; no we were treated in a very abrupt and dis- wonder that the old gentleman received courteous way by a respectable-looking us, at first, rather ungraciously. personage, whom we had civilly asked to Since the time of which I am now direct us the road to Llantony. Now I speaking, the brow of Old Humphrey hate churlishness in man or woman! has been graven by the hand of time, and A hog setting up his bristles and grunt- his feet have travelled far toward the ing in a menacing manner, without pro- grave; but how has it been with his vocation, is scarcely more forbidding heart and his affections ? Are they than a churlish man. As we pursued nearer heaven than they were ? are they our course, guided rather by a sight of yearning for the mansions of the blest? the distant hills, than by our knowledge Let me heave a sigh, and go on with of the roads, we were every now and my narrative. then pent up by the enclosures of the There sat the redoubted Mr. Hollowdifferent homesteads, or by the high blast in his arm-chair by the fire, with a hedges of the fields we had entered. worsted night-cap on his head, a pair of Many a swollen brook had we to cross, blue, broad-ribbed, worsted stockings, of and many a snow-drift to struggle through. ample dimensions, drawn over his legs

At last we came to Llantony Abbey, and thighs. a romantic ruin situated in the


heart While standing near the door, we of the mountains. A spot can scarcely made known to the old gentleman the be conceived more solitary and shut out object of our call. Attracted by the fame from the world; the broad-breasted ever- of Llantony Abbey, we had visited the lasting hills surrounding it on every side. place, but found no house where shelter Save the gorge at which we had entered, for the night could be afforded us.

We we looked in vain for any inlet to the were wet, we were weary, and as stranvalley.

gers we trusted he would render us all We had been told that a bed might be the assistance in his power. got at the neighbouring village pothouse ; “Why, gentlemen,” said he, eyeing but this was a mistake. The clergyman us with that scrutinizing glance with of the parish had taken up his residence which a shrewd landlord is wont to reat the pothouse, there being no parson- gard customers of a doubtful appearance, age house near. The dormitory where this is an awkward time of night to we intended to sleep was thus occupied, come upon one unexpectedly, and an and, as a last resource, we were fain to awkward time of the year too. Had it seek a shelter for the night, wet and been in the summer, now, we could have weary as we were, in the inhabited end managed the matter; for then we keep a of the old Abbey.

bed or two always ready: but in winter it A part of the ruin had been built up is altogether another affair. If you had into some appearance of a mansion or only sent me word of your coming, there dwelling-house, and this was inhabited would have been no difficulty.” by an old man of the name of Hollow- These observations were all very natublast; a name most admirably in keep-'ral; but seeing that we could neither

you can find

alter the season of the year, nor the hour good deal, and know what it is to come of the night, they sounded rather dis- in wet and tired after a journey. Be cordantly in our ears. As a kind of handy, girl! let us make the gentlemen compromise, however,

between the com- as comfortable as we can ; for I can feel forts we stood in need of, and the diffi- for them.” culties that existed in the way of pro- It is a common observation that“Every curing them, we proposed, with per- man has his weak point,” but if the mission, to sit all night by the fire. word point were put in the plural, the

For a few moments we appeared to be remark would be quite as correct. Now hung up in the balances by our pruden- one of the weak points of old Mr. Holtial host, and it seemed equally uncertain lowblast was a disposition to talk about whether we should be considered of full lord Anglesea, whom, in days gone by, tale and weight, or whether we should he had served in the capacity of steward, kick the beam. A feather would have or something of that kind. We were turned the scale. Happily the decision patient listeners, and thus secured the was in our favour.

good will of our garrulous host. “Well, walk in, gentlemen," said Mr. The tea was excellent, the toast capiHollowblast, “and draw up to the fire. tal, and we did justice to them both ; for We will see what can be done for you; I of all recreations to those who are half know what it is to come in wet and tired famished, eating and drinking is the most after a journey: Mary, put some wood agreeable. on the fire; these gentlemen must be Let me see,” said Mr. Hollowblast, sadly starved, and a good fire is a com- soon after the tea made its appearance, fortable thing such a night as this. Be “ haven't we a bit of the goose left ? we handy, girl ; bring some wood as soon as had a goose for dinner, and a good one you can.

Let me see! If we have got too, and if there is any of it left, gentlenothing else, we can make a cup of tea, men, you shall have it and welcome. and a good cup too. Our bread is not to Mary, see what you can find: may be be found fault with, and there is no better the gentlemen would like to pick a little butter any where. A pot of good tea of the goose,



I know and a plate of good toast and butter will what it is to be weary and hungry: bring be just the thing. Nothing so refreshing what there is of it, Mary, much or little, as tea after a journey. I have seen a they shall have it and welcome.” good deal of life; I know what it is to Mary, after a little rummaging in the come in wet and tired after a journey, and larder, produced a couple of drumsticks can feel for the gentlemen. Let them of the dinner goose, and sundry other have a cup of tea as good as you can fragments, which added considerably to make it for them.”

the pleasure of our repast. Nor did the Before our sympathizing host had half old gentleman forget, while we were finished these open-hearted observations, burnishing the bones, again and again to my younger companion, putting it down refresh our memory with the often reas a settled thing that in his weary state peated information that he “had seen a no possible contingency could compel good deal of life,” that he knew what it him to move more than a stone's cast or to be tired and hungry, and that two from the place where he then was, he could feel for us.' had begun to pull off his wet boots and In sketching this portrait from the stockings. This was an undertaking of life, I am dealing as gently as I can with some little difficulty, and soon attracted the original. Human sympathy is a the attention of old Mr. Hollowblast, costly thing. Oh that it were always whose kindly feelings in our behalf disinterested! Oh that we were more again overflowed from his lips.

interested in each other's eternal, as well “ Hark ye! Mary,” said he, as soon

as temporal welfare ! as he heard her bring in the wood he had By the time we had taken our tea, ordered her to fetch, " these gentlemen Mr. Hollowblast appeared to take a still are wet in the feet, for they have walked stronger interest in our welfare. “Mary," a long way in the snow, see if you can said he, “haven't we a little brandy, find some of my warm woollen stockings; and an odd bottle of sherry in the house? or worsted will do. 'Tis a sad thing to I have some remembrance of such a thing; sit in wet clothes, and especially with wet and if we have, let the gentlemen have it: feet, and bring a pair or two of my old where is the use of hoarding up comforts shoes and slippers. I have travelled a when people stand in need of them ? See


« PreviousContinue »