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masks, to shew it afar off; and therefore sailed with his scholar into Ireland, where the affection to the house of York was most in height. The King had been a little improvident in the matters of Ireland, and had not removed officers and counsellors, and put in their places, or at least intermingled, persons of whom he stood assured, as he should have done, since he knew the strong bent of that country towards the house of York; and that it was a
ticklish and unsettled state, more easy to receive distempers io and mutations than England was. But trusting to the repu
tation of his victories and successes in England, he thought he should have time enough to extend his cares afterwards to that second kingdom.
Wherefore through this neglect, upon the coming of 15 Simon with his pretended Plantagenet into Ireland, all
things were prepared for revolt and sedition, almost as if they had been set and plotted beforehand. Simon's first address was to the lord Thomas Fitz-Gerard, earl of Kildare
and deputy of Ireland; before whose eyes he did cast such 20 a mist, by his own insinuation, and by the carriage of his
youth, that expressed a natural princely behaviour, as joined perhaps with some inward vapours of ambition and affection in the earl's own mind, left him fully possessed, that it was
the true Plantagenet. The earl presently communicated the 25 matter with some of the nobles, and others there, at the first
secretly; but finding them of like affection to himself, he suffered it of purpose to vent and pass abroad; because they thought it not safe to resolve, till they had a taste of
the people's inclination. But if the great ones were in for30 wardness, the people were in fury, entertaining this airy
body or phantasm with incredible affection; partly, out of their great devotion to the house of York; partly out of a proud humour in the nation, to give a King to the realm of
England. Neither did the party, in this heat of affection, much trouble themselves with the attainder of George duke of Clarence; having newly learned by the King's example, that attainders do not interrupt the conveying of title to the
And as for the daughters of King Edward the 5 fourth, they thought King Richard had said enough for them; and took them to be but as of the King's party, because they were in his power and at his disposing. So that with marvellous consent and applause, this counterfeit Plantagenet was brought with great solemnity to the castle 10 of Dublin, and there saluted, served, and honoured as King; the boy becoming it well, and doing nothing that did bewray. the baseness of his condition. And within a few days after he was proclaimed King in Dublin, by the name of King Edward the sixth ; there being not a sword drawn in 15 King Henry his quarrel.
The King was much moved with this unexpected accident when it came to his ears, both because it struck upon ihat string which ever he most feared, as also because it was stirred in such a place, where he could not with safety 20 transfer his own person to suppress it. For partly through natural valour, and partly through an universal suspicion, not knowing whom to trust, he was ever ready to wait upon all his achievements in person. The King therefore first called his council together at the charter-house at 25 Shene; which council was held with great secrecy, but the open decrees thereof, which presently came abroad, were three.
The first was, that the Queen dowager, for that she, contrary to her pact and agreement with those that had 30 concluded with her concerning the marriage of her daughter Elizabeth with King Henry, had nevertheless delivered her daughters out of sanctuary into King Richard's hands,
should be cloistered in the nunnery of Bermondsey, and forfeit all her lands and goods.
The next was, that Edward Plantagenet, then close prisoner in the Tower, should be, in the most public and 5 notorious manner that could be devised, shewed unto the
people: in part to discharge the King of the envy of that opinion and bruit, how he had been put to death privily in the Tower; but chiefly to make the people see the levity
and imposture of the proceedings of Ireland, and that their 10 Plantagenet was indeed but a puppet or a counterfeit.
The third was that there should be again proclaimed a general pardon to all that would reveal their offences, and submit themselves by a day. And that this pardon should
be conceived in so ample and liberal a manner, as no high15 treason, no not against the King's own person, should be
excepted. Which though it might seem strange, yet was it not so to a wise King, that knew his greatest dangers were not from the least treasons, but from the greatest.
These resolutions of the King and his council were immediately 20 put in execution. And first, the Queen dowager was put
into the monastery of Bermondsey, and all her estates seized into the King's hands: whereat there was much wondering; that a weak woman, for the yielding to the menaces and
promises of a tyrant, after such a distance of time, wherein 25 the King had shewed no displeasure nor alteration, but
much more after so happy a marriage between the King and her daughter, blessed with issue male, should, upon a sudden mutability or disclosure of the King's mind, be so severely
handled. 30 This lady was amongst the examples of great variety of
fortune. She had first from a distressed suitor, and desolate widow, been taken to the marriage bed of a bachelor King, the goodliest personage of his time, and even in his reign she
had endured a strange eclipse by the King's flight, and temporary depriving from the crown. She was also very happy, in that she had by him fair issue; and continued his nuptial love, helping herself by some obsequious bearing and dissembling of his pleasures, to the very end. She was much 5 affectionate to her own kindred, even unto faction ; which did stir great envy in the lords of the King's side, who counted her blood a disparagement to be mingled with the King's. With which lords of the King's blood joined also the King's favourite, the lord Hastings; who, notwithstand- 10 ing the King's great affection to him, was thought at times, through her malice and spleen, not to be out of danger of falling. After her husband's death she was matter of tragedy, having lived to see her brother beheaded, and her two sons deposed from the crown, bastarded in their blood, and 15 cruelly murdered. All this while nevertheless she enjoyed her liberty, state, and fortunes: but afterwards again, upon the rise of the wheel, when she had a King to her son-inlaw, and was made grandmother to a grandchild of the best sex; yet was she, upon dark and unknown reasons, and no 20 less strange pretences, precipitated and banished the world into a nunnery; where it was almost thought dangerous to visit her, or see her; and where not long after she ended her life : but was by the king's commandment buried with the King her husband at Windsor. She was foundress of 25 Queen's college in Cambridge. For this act the King sustained great obloquy, which nevertheless, besides the reason of state, was somewhat sweetened to him by a great confiscation.
About this time also, Edward Plantagenet was upon 30 a Sunday brought, throughout all the principal streets of London, to be seen of the people. And having passed the view of the streets, was conducted to Paul's church in
solemn procession, where great store of people were assembled. And it was provided also in good fashion, that divers of the nobility, and others of quality, especially of those
that the King most suspected, and knew the person of 5 Plantagenet best, had communication with the young
gentleman by the way, and entertained him with speech and discourse; which did in effect mar the pageant in Ireland with the subjects here, at least with so many, as out of error,
and not out of malice, might be misled. Nevertheless in 10 Ireland, where it was too late to go back, it wrought little
or nó effect. But contrariwise, they turned the imposture upon the King; and gave out, that the King, to defeat the true inheritor, and to mock the world, and blind the eyes of
simple men, had tricked up a boy in the likeness of Edward 15 Plantagenet, and shewed him to the people; not sparing to
profane the ceremony of a procession, the more to countenance the fable.
The general pardon likewise near the same time came forth; and the King therewithal omitted no diligence, in 20 giving strait order for the keeping of the ports, that fugitives,
malcontents, or suspected persons, might not pass over into Ireland and Flanders.
Mean while the rebels in Ireland had sent privy messengers both into England and into Flanders, who in both 25 places had wrought effects of no small importance. For in
England they won to their party John earl of Lincoln, son of John de la Pole duke of Suffolk, and of Elizabeth, King Edward the fourth's eldest sister. This earl was a man of
great wit and courage, and had his thoughts highly raised 30 by hopes and expectations for a time: for Richard the third
had a resolution, out of his hatred to both his brethren, King Edward and the duke of Clarence, and their lines, having had his hand in both their bloods, to disable their