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Some Observations by way of Parallel, in the Time
of their Estates of Favour.
MONGST those historical employments, whereunto I have devoted my latter years, (for I read, that old men live more by memory than by hope), we thought it would be a little time not ill spent, to confer the fortunes and the natures of these two great personages of so late knowledge. Wherein I intend to do them right with the truth thereof, and myself with the freedom.|
The beginning of the Earl of Essex I must attribute wholly, or in great part, to my Lord of Leicester; but yet as an introducer or supporter, not as a teacher: for as I go along, it will easily appear that he neither lived nor died by his discipline.
Always certain it is, that he drew him first into the fatal circle, from a kind of resolved privateness at his house at Lampsie in South Wales; where, after the Academical life, he had taken such a taste of the rural, as I have heard him say, (and not upon any flashes or fumes of melancholy, or traverses of discontent, but in a serene and quiet mood), that he could well have bent his mind to a retired course. About which time, the said Earl of Leicester bewrayed a meaning to plant him in the Queen's favour; which was diversely interpreted by such as thought that great artizan of court to do nothing by chance, nor much by affection. Some, therefore, were of opinion, that feeling more and more in himself the weight of time, and being almost tired (if there be a satiety in power) with that assiduous attendance, and intensive circumspection, which a long indulgent fortune did require, he was grown not unwilling, for his own ease, to bestow handsomely upon another some part of the pains, and perhaps of the envy.|
Others conceived rather, that having
before, for the same ends, brought in, or let in Sir Walter Raleigh, and having found him such an apprentice as knew well enough how to set up for himself, he now meant to ally him with this young Earl, who had yet taken no strong impressions. For though the said Sir Walter Raleigh was a little before this, whereof I now speak by occasion, much fallen from his former splendour in court, yet he still continued in in [lit.] some lustre of a favoured man, like billows, that sink by degrees even when the wind is down that first stirred them.|
Thus runs the discourse of that time at pleasure. Yet I am not ignorant, that there was some good while a very stiff aversation in my Lord of Essex from applying himself to the Earl of Leicester; for what secret conceit I know not; but, howsoever, that humour was mollified by time, and by his mother; and to the court he came under his lee.
The Duke of Buckingham had another kind of Germination; and surely had he been a plant, he would have been reckoned among the sponte nascentes, for
|he sprung without any help, by a kind of congenial composure (as we may term it) to the likeness of our late Sovereign and Master of ever blessed memory; who, taking him into his regard, taught him more and more to please himself, and moulded him, (as it were) Platonically, to his own idea; delighting first in the choice of the materials, because he found him susceptible of good form; and afterward, by degrees, as great architects use to do, in the workmanship of his regal hand: nor staying here, after he had hardened and polished him about ten years in the school of observance, (for so a Court is,) and in the furnace of trial about himself, (for he was a king could peruse men as well as books,) he made him the associate of his Heir Apparent, together with the now Lord Cottington (as an adjunct of singular experience and trust) in foreign travels, and in a business of love, and of no equal hazard (if the tenderness of our zeal did not then deceive us;) enough, the world must confess, to kindle affection even betwixt the distantest conditions; so as by the various and inward|
conversation abroad (besides that before and after at home) with the most constant and best natured Prince, bona si sua nôrint, as ever England enjoyed, this Duke becomes now secondly seized of favour, as it were by descent (though the condition of that estate be commonly no more than a tenancy at will, or at most for the life of the first lord) and rarely transmitted; which I have briefly set down, without looking beyond the veil of the temple, I mean, into the secret of high inclinations; since even satyrical poets, (who are otherwise of so licentious fancy) are in this point modest enough to confess their ignorance.|
And these were both their springings and imprimings, as I may call them.
In the profluence or proceedings of their fortunes, I observe likewise not only much difference between them; but in the Earl, not a little from himself. First, all his hopes of advancement had like to be strangled almost in the very cradle, by throwing himself into the Portugal voyage
|without the Queen's consent, or so much as her knowledge; whereby he left his friends and dependents near six months in desperate suspence what would become of him. And to speak truth, not without good reason: for, first, they might well consider, that he was himself not well plumed in favour for such a flight: besides, that now he wanted a Lord of Leicester at home (for he was dead the year before) to smooth his absence, and to quench the practices at Court. But, above all, it lay open to every man's discourse, that though the bare offence to his Sovereign and Mistress was too great an adventure, yet much more, when she might (as in this case) have fairly discharged her displeasure upon her laws. Notwithstanding, a noble report coming home before him, at his return all was clear, and this excursion was esteemed but a sally of youth. Nay, he grew every day more and more in her gracious conceit: whether such intermissions as these do sometimes foment affection ; or that, having committed a fault, he became the more obsequious and pliant to redeem it: or that|
she yet had not received into her royal breast any shadows of his popularity.|
There was another time long after, when Sir Fulke Grevile (late Lord Brook) a man in appearance intrinsical with him, or at least admitted to his melancholy hours, either belike espying some weariness in the Queen, or perhaps (with little change of the word, though more in the danger) some weariness towards him; and working upon the present matter (as he was dexterous and close) had almost superinduced into favour the Earl of Southampton; which yet being timely discovered, my Lord of Essex chose to evaporate his thoughts in a Sonnet (being his common way) to be sung before the Queen, (as it was) by one Hales, in whose voice she took some pleasure; whereof the complot, methinks, had as much of the Hermit as of the Poet,
As if he had been casting one eye back at the least to his former retiredness.
But all this likewise quickly vanished, and there was a good while after fair weather over-head. Yet still, I know not how, like a gathering of clouds, till towards his latter time, when his humours grew tart, as being now in the lees of favour, it brake forth into certain sudden recesses; sometimes from the Court to Wansted; otherwhiles unto Greenwich; often to his own chamber; doors shut, visits forbidden, and which was worse, diverse contestations (between) even with the Queen herself, (all preambles of ruin;) wherewith, though now and then he did wring out of her Majesty some petty contentments, (as a man would press sour grapes) yet in the mean time was forgotten the counsel of a wise, and then a prophetical friend, who told him, that such courses as those were like hot waters, which help at a pang, but if they be too often used will spoil the stomach.|
On the Duke's part, we have no such abrupt strains and precipices as these, but a fair fluent and uniform course under both kings: and surely, as there was in his natural constitution a marvelous equality,
whereof I shall speak more afterwards; so there was an image of it in his fortune, running (if I may borrow an ancient comparison) as smoothly as a numerous verse, till it met with certain rubs in Parliament, whereof I am induced by the very subject which I handle, to say somewhat, so far as shall concern the difference between their times.|
When my Lord of Essex stood in favour, the Parliaments were calm: nay, I find it a true observation, that there was no impeachment of any nobleman by the Commons from the reign of King Henry the Sixth, until the eighteenth of King James, nor any intervenient precedent of that nature; not that something or other could be wanting to be said, while men are men: for not to go higher, we are taught easily so much by the very ballads and libels of the Leicestrian time.
But, about the aforesaid year, many young ones being chosen into the House of Commons, more than had been usual in great councils, (who though of the weakest wings, yet are the highest flyers,) there
arose a certain unfortunate and unfruitful spirit in some places; not sowing, but picking at every stone in the field, rather than tending to the general harvest. And thus far the consideration of the nature of the time hath transported me, and the occasion of the subject.|
Now, on the other side, I must with the like liberty observe two weighty and watchful solicitudes, (as I may call them) which kept the Earl in extreme and continual caution, like a bow still bent; whereof the Duke's thoughts were absolutely free.
First, he was to wrestle with a Queen's declining, or rather with her very setting age, (as we may term it,) which, besides other respects, is commonly even of itself the more umbratious and apprehensive, as for the most part all horizons are charged with certain vapours towards their evening.
The other was a matter of more circumstance, standing thus, viz.
All princes, especially those whom God hath not blessed with natural issue, are (by wisdom of state) somewhat shy of their
successors; and to speak with due reverence, there may be reasonably supposed in Queens regnant, a little proportion of tenderness that way, more than in Kings. Now there were in Court two names of power, and almost of faction; the Essexian and the Cecilian, with their adherents; both well enough enjoying the present, and yet both looking to the future, and therefore both holding correspondence with some of the principal in Scotland; and had received advertisements and instructions either from them, or immediately from the King, as indubiate Heir of this Imperial Crown.|
But, lest they might detect one another, this was mysteriously carried by several instruments and conducts, and on the Essexian side, in truth, with infinite hazard: for Sir Robert Cecil, who (as Secretary of State) did dispose the public addresses, had prompter and safer conveyance; whereupon I cannot but relate a memorable passage on either part, as the story following shall declare.
The Earl of Essex had accommodated Master Anthony Bacon in partition of his
|house, and had assigned him a noble entertainment. This was a gentleman of impotent feet, but a nimble head, and through his hand ran all the intelligences with Scotland; who being of a provident nature (contrary to his brother the Lord Viscount St. Albans) and well knowing the advantage of a dangerous secret, would many times cunningly let fall some words, as if he could much amend his fortunes under the Cecilians, (to whom he was near of alliance and in blood also,) and who had made (as he was not unwilling should be believed) some great proffers to win him away; which once or twice he pressed so far, and with such tokens and signs of apparent discontent to my Lord Henry Howard, afterwards Earl of Northampton, (who was of the party, and stood himself in much umbrage with the Queen) that he flies presently to my Lord of Essex, (with whom he was commonly primæ admissionis, by his bed-side in the morning,) and tells him, that unless that gentleman were presently satisfied with some round sum, all would be vented.|
This took the Earl at that time ill provided, (as indeed oftentimes his coffers were low,) whereupon he was fain suddenly to give him Essex-house; which the good old Lady Walsingham did afterwards disengage out of her own store with 2500 pounds: and before, he had distilled 1500 pounds at another time by the same skill. So as we may rate this one secret, as it was finely carried, at 4000 pounds in present money; besides, at the least, 1000 pounds of annual pension to a private and bed-rid gentleman. What would he have gotten if he could have gone about his own business?|
There was another accident of the same nature on the Cecilian side, much more pleasant, but less chargeable, for it cost nothing but wit. The Queen having for a good while not heard any thing from Scotland, and being thirsty of news, it fell out that her Majesty going to take the air towards the Heath, (the Court being then at Greenwich) and Master Secretary Cecil then attending her, a post came crossing by, and blew his horn; the Queen, out of curiosity, asked him from
whence the dispatch came, and being answered, from Scotland; she stops the coach, and calleth for the packet. The Secretary, though he knew there were in it some letters from his correspondents, which to discover were as so many serpents, yet made more shew of diligence, than of doubt to obey; and asks some that stood by (forsooth in great haste) for a knife to cut up the packet, (for otherwise he might perhaps have awaked a little apprehension;) but in the mean time approaching with the packet in his hand, at a pretty distance from the Queen, he telleth her it looked and smelt ill-savouredly, coming out of a filthy budget, and that it should be fit first to open and air it, because he knew she was averse from ill scents. And so being dismissed home, he got leisure by this seasonable shift, to sever what he would not have seen.|
These two accidents, precisely true, and known to few, I have reported as not altogether extravagant from my purpose, to shew how the Earl stood in certain perplexities, wherewith the Duke's days were
not distracted. And this hath been the historical part (as it were) touching the difference between them in the rising and flowing of their fortunes.|
I will now consider their several endowments of person and mind, and then a little of their actions and ends.
The Earl was a pretty deal the taller, and much the stronger, and of the abler body: but the Duke had the neater limbs and freeer delivery; he was also the uprighter, and of the more comely motions; for the Earl did bend a little in the neck, though rather forwards than downwards; and he was so far from being a good dancer, that he was no graceful goer. If we touch particulars, the Duke exceeded in the daintiness of his leg and foot, and the Earl in the incomparable fairness and fine shape of his hands; which (though it be but feminine praise) he took from his father. For the general air, the Earl had the closer and more reserved countenance, being by nature somewhat more cogitive, and (which was strange) never more than at meals, when others are least: insomuch,
as he was wont to make his observation of himself, that to solve any knotty business which cumbered his mind, his ablest hours were when he had checked his first appetite with two or three morsels, after which he sate usually for a good while silent; yet he would play well and willingly at some games of greatest attention, which shewed that when he listed, he could licence his thoughts.|
The Duke, on the other side, even in the midst of so many diversions, had continually a very pleasant and vacant face, (as I may well call it) proceeding, no doubt, from a singular assurance in his temper. And yet I must here give him a rarer eulogy, which the malignest eye cannot deny him; that certainly, never man in his place and power did entertain greatness more familiarly, nor whose looks were less tainted with his felicity; wherein I insist the rather, because this, in my judgment, was one of his greatest virtues and victories of himself.
But to proceed, in the attiring and ornament of their bodies, the Duke had a
fine and unaffected politeness, and upon occasion costly, as in his legations.|
The Earl, as he grew more and more attentive to business and matters, so less and less curious of clothing: insomuch, as I do remember, those about him had a conceit, that possibly sometimes when he went up to the Queen, he might scant know what he had on; for this was his manner; his chamber being commonly stived with friends or suitors of one kind or other, when he was up, he gave his legs, arms, and breast to his ordinary servants to button and dress him, with little heed; his head and face to his barber, his eyes to his letters, and ears to petitioners, and many times all at once; then the gentleman of his robes throwing a cloak over his shoulders, he would make a step into his closet, and after a short prayer he was gone; only in his baths he was somewhat delicate. For point of diet and luxury, they were both very inordinate in their appetites, especially the Earl, who was by nature of so indifferent a taste, that I must tell a rare thing of him (though it be of a homely note) that he would stop
in the midst of any physical potion, and after he had licked his lips, he would drink off the rest; but I am weary of such slight animadversions.|
To come, therefore, to the inward furniture of their minds, I will thus much declare:
The Earl was of good erudition, having been placed at study in Cambridge, very young, by the Lord Burleigh, his guardian, with affectionate and deliberate care, under the oversight of Doctor Whitgift, then master of Trinity College, and after Archbishop of Canterbury: a man (by the way) surely of most reverend and sacred memory, and (as I may well say) even of the primitive temper; when the Church by lowness of spirit, did flourish in high examples; which I have inserted as a due recordation of his virtues, having been much obliged to him for many favours in my younger time.
About sixteen years of his age, (for thither he came at twelve) he took the formality of Master of Arts, and kept his public acts. And here I must not smother
what I have received by constant information, that his own father died with a very cold conceit of him; some say, through the affection to his second son, Walter Devereux, who was indeed a diamond of the time, and both of an hardy and delicate temper and mixture: but it seems this Earl, like certain vegetables, did bud and open slowly; Nature sometimes delighting to play an after-game as well as Fortune, which had both their turns and tides in course.|
The Duke was illiterate, yet had learned at court, first to sift and question well, and to supply his own defects, by the drawing or flowing unto him of the best instruments of experience and knowledge, from whom he had a sweet and attractive manner, to suck what might be for the public or his own proper use; so as the less he was favoured by the Muses, he was the more by the Graces.
To consider them in their pure naturals, I conceive the Earl's intellectual faculties to have been his stronger part, and in the Duke his practical.
Yet all know, that he likewise at the first was much under the expectation of his after-proof; such a solar influence there is in the sovereign aspect. For their abilities of discourse or pen, the Earl was a very acute and sound speaker when he would intend it; and for his writings, they are beyond example, especially in his familiar letters and things of delight at court, when he would admit his serious habits, as may be yet seen in his impresses and inventions of entertainment, and above all in his darling piece of love, and self-love. His style was an elegant perspicuity, rich of phrase, but seldom any bold metaphors; and so far from tumour, that it rather wanted a little elevation.|
The Duke's delivery of his mind, I conceive not to be so sharp, as solid and grave; not so solid and deep, as pertinent, and apposite to the times and occasions.
The Earl I account the more liberal, and the Duke the more magnificent; for I do not remember that my Lord of Essex in all his life-time did build or adorn any house, the Queen perchance spending his
time, and himself his means; or otherwise inclining to popular ways; for we know the people are apter to applaud house-keepers, than house-raisers. They were both great cherishers of scholars and divines; but it seems the Earl had obtained of himself one singular point, that he could depart his affection between two extremes; for though he bare always a kind of filial reverence towards Dr. Whitgift, both before and after he was Archbishop; yet on the other side, he did not a little love and tender Mr. Cartwright, though I think truly, with large distinction between the persons and the causes, however he was taxed with other ends in respecting that party.|
They were both fair-spoken gentlemen, not prone and eager to detract openly from any man; and in this the Earl hath been most falsely blemished in our vulgar story; only against one man he had forsworn all patience, namely, Henry, Lord Cobham, and would call him (par Excellentiam) the Sycophant (as if it had been an emblem of his name) even to the Queen herself, though of no small insinuation with
her; and one lady likewise (that I may civilly spare to nominate, for her sex sake) whom he used to term the Spider of the Court: yet generally in the sensitive part of their natures, the Earl was the worst philosopher, being a resenter, and a weak dissembler of the least disgrace: and herein likewise, as in the rest, no good pupil to my Lord of Leicester, who was wont to put all his passions in his pocket.|
In the growth of their fortunes, the Duke was a little the swifter, and much the greater; for from a younger brother's mean estate, he rose to the highest degree whereof a subject was capable, either in title or trust. Therein I must confess, much more consortable to Charles Brandon, under Henry the Eighth, who was equal to him in both.
For matter of donative and addition of substance, I do not believe the Duke did much exceed him, all considered, under both kings.
For that which the Earl of Essex had received from her Majesty, besides the fees of his offices, and the disposition of great
sums of money in her armies, was (about the time of his arraignment, when faults use to be aggravated with precedent benefits,) valued at three hundred thousand pounds sterling in pure gift for his only use, by the Earl of Dorset, then Lord Treasurer; who was a wise man, and a strict computist, and not well affected towards him. And yet it is worthy of note in the margent of both times, that the one was prosecuted with silence, and the other with murmur; so undoing a measure is popular judgment!|
I cannot here omit between them a great difference in establishing of both their fortunes and fames.
For the first: the Duke had a care to introduce into near place at the Court divers of his confident servants, and into high places very sound and grave personages. Whereas, except a pensioner or two, we can scant name any one man advanced of the Earl's breeding, but Sir Thomas Smith, having been his Secretary; who yet came never further (though married into
a noblea house) than to the Clerk of the Council, and Register of the Parliament: not that the Earl meant to stand alone like a substantive (for he was not so ill a grammarian in Court;) but the truth is, in this point, the Cecilians kept him back, as very well knowing that upon every little absence or disassiduity, he should be subject to take cold at his back.|
For the other, in the managing of their fames, I note between them a direct contrary wisdom; for the Earl proceeded by way of apology, which he wrote and dispersed with his own hands at large, though till his going to Ireland they were but airy objections. But of the Duke this I know, that one having offered for his ease to do him that kind of service, he refused it with a pretty kind of thankful scorn; saying, that he would trust his own good intentions which God knew, and leave to him the pardoning of his errors; and that he saw no fruit of apologies, but the multiplying
a He married Frances, daughter of William Brydges, 4th Lord Chandos. She remarried the Earl of Exeter. There is a celebrated and most rare print of her by Faithorne.
|of discourse; which surely was a well settled maxim. And for my own particular, (though I am not obnoxious to his memory, in the expression of Tacitus, Neque injuriâ, neque beneficio, saving that he shewed me an ordinary good countenance: and if I were, yet I would distinguish between gratitude and truth,) I must bear him this testimony, that in a commission laid upon me by sovereign command, to examine a lady about a certain filthy accusation, grounded upon nothing but a few single names taken up by a footman in a kennel, and straight baptized, A list of such as the Duke had appointed to be poisoned at home, himself being then in Spain: I found it to be the most malicious and frantic surmise, and the most contrary to his nature, that I think had ever been brewed from the beginning of the world, howsoever countenanced by a libellous pamphlet of a fugitive physician even in print; and yet of this would not the Duke suffer any answer to be made on his behalf, so constant he was to his own principles.|
In their military services, the characters of the Earl's employments were these, viz.|
His forwardest, was that of Portugal, before mentioned.
The saddest, that of Roan, where he lost his brave brother.
His fortunatest piece I esteem the taking of Cadiz Malez, and no less modest; for there he wrote with his own hands a censure of his omissions.
His jealousest employment was to the relief of Calais, besieged by the Cardinal Archduke; about which, there passed then between the Queen and the French King much art.
His voyage to the Azores was the best, for the discovery of the Spanish weakness, and otherwise almost saving a voyage.
His blackest was that to Ireland, ordained to be the sepulchre of his father, and the gulf of his own fortunes.
But the first, in eighty-eight, at Tilbury Camp, was in my judgment, the very poison of all that followed; for there, whilst the Queen stood in some doubt of a Spanish
invasion, (though it proved but a morrice-dance upon our waves,) she made him in field Commander of the Cavalry (as he was before in Court,) and much graced him openly in view of the soldiers and people, even above my Lord of Leicester. The truth is, from thenceforth he fed too fast.|
The Duke's employment abroad in this nature, was only in the action of the Isle of Rees, of which I must note somewhat for the honour of our country, and of his Majesty's times, and of them that perished and survived, and to redeem it generally from misunderstanding. Therefore, after inquiry amongst the wisest and most indifferent men, of that action, I dare pronounce, that all circumstances pondered, a tumultuary landing on our part, with about 1000 in the whole: on their's, ready to receive us, some 200 horse, with near 2000 foot, and watching their best time of advantage; none of their foot discovered by us before, nor so much as suspected, and only some of their horse descried straggling, but not in any bulk or body; their
cavalry not a troop of Biscoigners, mounted in haste, but the greater part gentlemen of family, and of pickt resolution, and such as charged home both in front and on both flanks into the very sea; about sixcore of their 200 horse strewed upon the sand, and none of them but one killed with a great shot; and after this, their foot likewise coming on to charge, till not liking the business, they fell to flinging of stones, and so walked away: I say, these things considered and laid together, we have great reason to repute it a great impression upon an unknown place, and a noble argument, that upon occasion, we have not lost our ancient vigour.|
Only I could wish that the Duke, who then in the animating of the soldiers shewed them very eminent assurance of his valour, had afterwards remembered that rule of Apelles, Manum de tabula. But he was greedy of honour, and hot upon the public ends, and too confident in the prosperity of beginnings, as somewhere Polybius, that great critic of war, observeth of young lea-
ders, whom Fortune hath not before deceived.|
In this their military care and dispensation of reward and punishment, there was very few remarkable occasions under the Duke, saving his continual vigilancy and voluntary hazard of his person, and kindness to the soldiers, both from his own table and purse; for there could be few disorders within an island where the troops had no scope to disband, and the inferior commanders were still in sight.
In the Earl we have two examples of his severity, the one in the Island Voyage, where he threw a soldier with his own hand out of a ship; the other in Ireland, where he decimated certain troops that ran away, renewing a piece of the Roman discipline.
On the other side, we have many of his lenity, and one of his facility, when he did connive at the bold trespass of Sir Walter Raleigh, who before his own arrival at Fayall, had landed there against his precise commandment; at which time he let fall a noble word, being pressed by one, (whose name I need not remember) that
at the least he would put him upon a martial court: "That I would do," said he, "if he were my friend."|
And now I am drawing towards the last act, which was written in the Book of Necessity.
At the Earl's end I was abroad, but when I came home (though little was left for writers to glean after judges,) yet, I spent some curiosity to search what it might be that could precipitate him into such a prodigious catastrophe; and I must, according to my professed freedom, deliver a circumstance or two of some weight in the truth of that story, which was neither discovered at his arraignment, nor after in any of his private confessions.
There was amongst his nearest attendants, one Henry Cuffe, a man of secret ambitious ends of his own, and of proportionate counsels smothered under the habit of a scholar, and slobbered over with a certain rude and clownish fashion, that had the semblance of integrity.
This person, not above five or six weeks before my Lord's fatal irruption into the
city, was by the Earl's special command suddenly discharged from all further attendance, or access unto him, out of an inward displeasure then taken against his sharp and importune infusions, and out of a glimmering oversight, that he would prove the very instrument of his ruin.|
I must add hereunto, that about the same time my Lord had received from the Countess of Warwick (a lady powerful in the Court, and indeed a virtuous user of her power) the best advice that I think was ever given from either sex; that when he was free from restraint, he should closely take any out-lodging at Greenwich, and sometimes when the Queen went abroad in a good humour, (whereof she would give him notice) he should come forth, and humble himself before her in the field.
This counsel sunk much into him, and for some days he resolved it: but in the mean time, through the intercession of the Earl of Southampton, whom Cuffe had gained, he was restored to my Lord's ear; and so working advantage upon his disgraces, and upon the vain foundation of
vulgar breath, which hurts many good men, spun out the final destruction of his master and himself, and almost of his restorer, if his pardon had not been won by inches.|
True it is, that the Earl in Westminster-hall did in general disclose the evil persuasions of this man; but the particulars which I have related of his dismission and restitution, he buried in his own breast for some reasons apparent enough; indeed, (as I conjecture) not to exasperate the case of my Lord of Southampton, though he might therewith a little per-adventure have mollified his own. The whole and true report I had by infallible means, from the person himself that both brought the advice from the aforesaid excellent lady, and carried the discharge to Cuffe, who in a private chamber was strucken therewith into a swoon almost dead to the earth, as if he had fallen from some high steeple: such turrets of hope he had built in his own fancy.
Touching the Duke's sudden period, how others have represented it unto their fancies, I cannot determine: for my part, I must confess from my soul, that I never
recall it to mind without a deep and double astonishment of my discourse and reason:|
First of the very horror and atrocity of the fact in a Christian Court, under so moderate a government; but much more at the impudency of the pretence, whereby a desperate discontented assassinate would after the perpetration have honested a mere private revenge (as by precedent circumstances is evident enough) with I know not what public respects, and would fain have given it a parliamentary cover. Howsoever, thus these two great peers were disrobed of their glory, the one by judgment, the other by violence, which was the small distinction.
Now after this short contemplation of their diversities, (for much more might have been spoken, but that I was fitter for Rhapsody than Commentary) I am lastly desirous to take a summary view of their conformities, which I verily believe will be found as many, though perchance heeded by few, as are extant in any of the ancient parallel.
They both slept long in the arms of
Fortune: they were both of ancient blood, and of foreign extraction: they were both of straight and goodly stature, and of able and active bodies: they were both industrious and assiduous, and attentive to their ends: they were both early Privy Counsellors, and imployed at home in the secretest and weightiest affairs in the Court and State: they were both likewise Commanders abroad in chief, as well by sea as by land: both Masters of the Horse at home, both chosen Chancellors of the same University, namely, Cambridge: they were both indubitable strong, and high-minded men; yet of sweet and accostable nature, almost equally delighting in the press and affluence of dependants and suitors, which are always the berries, and sometimes the briars of favourites. They were both married to very virtuous ladies, and sole heirs, and left issue of their sex, and both their wives converted to contrary religions. They were both in themselves rare and excellent examples of temperance and sobriety; but neither of them of continency.|
Lastly, after they had been both sub-
ject (as all greatness and splendour is) to certain obliquies of their actions; they both concluded their earthly felicity in unnatural ends, and with no great distance of time in the space either of life or favour.|
And so having discharged this poor exercise of my pen according to my knowledge and reality, let us commit those two noble peers to their eternal rest, with their memorable abilities remaining in few, and their compassionate infirmities common to all.
Printed by Johnson and Warwick,
At the private Press of LEE PRIORY, Kent.