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28.-SAINT SIMON AND SAINT JUDE, Apostles.
The Simon here meant is Simon the Canaanite, or Simon Zelotes. He and Jude both suffered martyrdom together in Persia, about the year 74.
Queen Elizabeth. 'The Second Series of Mr. Ellis's Original Letters affords some highly interesting illustrations of the eventful reign of Elizabeth; among these, not the least curious and valuable, are the “ Observations' on the Life and Reign of this Queen, confessedly written by a person acquainted with her court, who held office under, and lived in the household of Lord Burghley : the narrative is copied from the Sloane MSS. in the British Museum, and, though long, we shall give it to our readers in the same words as Mr. Ellis has done, in his invaluable "LETTERS'': we cannot think of abridging it, for this would at once destroy its interest and its value to the readers of English history.
I will now proceed, says the writer, with the particular description of the Queen's disposition and natural gifts of mind and body, wherein she either matched or exceeded all the princes of her time; as being of a great spirit, yet tempered with moderation; in adversity never dejected, in prosperity rather joyful than proud; affable to her subjects, but always with due regard of the greatness of her estate, by reason whereof she was both loved and feared.
In her later time, when she shewed herself in public, she was always magnificient in apparel; supposing haply thereby that the eyes of her people (being dazzled by the glittering aspect of those
1 We know not what apology to make to Mr. Ellis for having selected so many specimens of pure ore from the vast mine of intelli. gence which he has opened to our view: if their variety and beauty have tempted us to overstep the bounds of modesty in this particular, we trust we shall stand excused at the tribunal of the learned author. To our readers we would say, that the extracts we have given are but échantillons of the information they may expect to receive from the perusal of Mr. Ellis's four volumes: they will serve to excite, rather than to gratify curiosity; and will, we hope, tend greatly to increase the number of those who devote a portion of their time to the study of English History.
her outward ornaments) would not so easily discern the marks of age, and decay of natural beauty; and she caine abroad the more seldom, to make her presence the more grateful and applauded by the multitude, to whom things rarely seen are in manner as new..
She suffered not, at any time, any suitor to depart discontented from her, and though oft times be obtained not that be desired, yet he held himself satisfied with her manner of speech, which gave hope of success in a second attempt. And it was noted in her, that she seldom or never denied any suite that was moved unto her, how unfit soever to be granted; but the suitor received the answer of denial from some other.
In granting offices sbe used many delays, but, after long suite, she gave them voluntarily. The one perhaps she did, for that she loved to be sued unto, and to be gratified with rewards; and the other that she might not seem to yield by importunity, and so loose the thanks that a good turn freely bestowed deserveth.
She was accounted in her latter time to be very near and oversparing of expense; and yet, if the rewards which she gave of meer motion and grace had been bestowed of merit with due respect, they had doubtless purchased her the name of a very liberal prince. Howbeit (notwithstanding the subsidies levied in many Parliaments, and the diverse sums of money lent her by her subjects), she was enforced to sell some of her owne lands and jewels to support the charge of the Irish war. · Certain it is that some persons attending near about her would now and then abuse her favour, and make sale of it, by taking bribes for such suites as she bestowed freely ; likewise purveyors, and other officers of her household, under pretence of her service, would ofttimes, for their own, vex and burtben, with many impositions, the poorer sort of the inhabitants near the usual place of her residence; and although it be accounted, in a manner, as great a fault for a prince to be ill bimself, as to have ill officers about him, yet, the consideration of her sex (sbe being a woman, and wanting convenicnt means to understand the grievances of her people, but by report of others), may seem to carry some colour of excuse.
She was very rich in jewells, which had been given her by her subjects; for in times of progress there was no person that entertained her in his house, but (besides his extraordinary charge in feasting her and her train) be bestowed a jewel upon her: a custom in former times began by some of her special favourites that (having in great measure iasted of her bounty) did give her only of ber own; though, otherwise, that kind of giving was not so pleasing to gentlemen of meaner quality.
During the long continuance of her government, many secret treasons were practised against her life, both by strangers, and also by some of her own unnatural subjects; but God, that bad ordained her to die (as she had lived) in peace, would not suffer them to
prevail in their bad intentions; and Doctor Parry, that had vowed to kill her (being alone with her in the garden at Richmond, and then resolved to act that tragedy), was so daunted with the majesty of her presence in which he then saw the image of her grandfather, King Henry the Seventh, as himself confessed), that his heart would not suffer his hand to execute that which he had resolved. And the self same day that the late Earl of Essex, being then in disgrace, entered the city with diverse noblemen and gentlemen of quality in a confused troop, when report was made unto her of the manner thereof, she (being then at dinner) seerned nothing moved therewith, but onely said that' He that had placed her in that seat would preserve her in it;' and so she continued at her dinner, not shewing any sign of fear or distraction of mind; nor omitting any thing that day that she had been accustomed to do at other times: an argument of a religious resolution and great constancy in a woman (as I think) but rarely to be found in men of more than ordinary spirit.
Touching those commendable qualities whereto, partly by nature and partly by education and industry, she had attained, there were few men, that (when time and occasion served) could make better use or more show of them than herself. The Latin, French, and Italian she could speak very elegantly, and she was able in all those languages to answer embassadors on the sudden. Her manner of writing was somewhat obscure, and the stile not vulgar, as being either learned by imitation of some author whom she delighted to read, or else affected for difference sake, that she might not write in such phrases as were commonly used. Of the Greek tongue also she was not altogether 'ignorant. She took pleasure in reading of the best and wisest histories, and some part of Tacitus's Annals she herself turned into Englisb for her private exercise. She also translated Boethius de Consolatione Philosopbiæ, and a Treatise of Plutarch de Curiositate, with divers others.
For her private pleasures, she used them moderately and warily, without touch to her reputation, or offence to her people, She was, in her diet, very temperate, as eating but of few kinds of meat, and those not compounded: the wine she drank was mingled with water, containing three parts more in quantity than the wine itself. Precise howers of refection she observed not, as never eating but when her appetite required it.
In matters of recreation, as singing, dancing, and playing upon instruments, she was not ignorant nor excellent: a measure which, in things indifferent, best beseems a prince. . She was of nature somewhat hasty, but quickly appeased: ready there to show most kindnes, where a little before she had been most sharp in reproving. Her greatest grief of mind and body she either patiently endured, or politicly dissembled. I have heard it credibly reported, that, not long before her death, she was divers times troubled with the gout in her fingers, whereof she would never complain; as seeming better pleased to be thought insensible of the pain, than to acknowledge the disease. And she would often show herself abroad at public spectacles (even against her own likeing) to no other end but that the people might the better perceive her ability of body and good disposition, which otherwise, in respect of her years, they might perhaps have doubted; so jealous was she to have her natural defects discovered, for diminishing her reputation.
As for flatterers, it is certain that she had many too near her, and was well contented to have them.
After the Earl of Essex his death, the Queen imagined that the people's affection towards her waxed more cold than had been accustomed, and from that time forward entering into a more serious consideration of her years and natural infirmities, she fell at length into a sickness, proceeding first from some distemper of body, which, concurring with the indisposition of her mind, brought her to her end. It is credibly reported, that not long before her death she had a great apprehension of her own age and declination by seeing her face (then lean and full of wrinkles), truly represented to her in a glass, wbich she a good wbile very earnestly beheld: perceiving thereby how often she had been abused by flatterers (whom she held in too great estimation), that had informed her the contrary.
But now to return where I left, namely with the death of the Queen, for that divers rumours have been spread concerning the manner of it, I think it not amiss to note some particular circumstances which I received by information of such persons as had good means to understand the truth of things, and no reason at all to misreport them.
About three weeks before her death (her sleep decaying) she began to fall into a melancholy passion; and being persuaded to use the help of pbysic, she utterly refused it; either for that she thought her body being not thereto accustomed it would not do her good, or else that (having satiety of the world) she desired rather to die than live. For she would divers times say in the time of her sickness, “I am not sick; I feel no pain; and yet I pine away. She was wholly addicted to silence and solitariness, which gave occasion of suspicion that she was afllicted in mind : but being moved by some of her Council to impart such griefs as they doubted might trouble her, she answered that she knew nothing in the world worthy to trouble her;' and it is a constant opinion of such as were most inward with her, that she was then free from any such impression, as it is not altogether unlikely, considering that melancholy diseases (as physicians tell us) proceed not always from the indisposition of the mind, but sometimes from the distemperature of humor in the body, causing a kind of numbness and stupidity of the senses. The Bishops (who then attended at the court) seeing that she would not hearken to advice for the recovery of her bodily health, desired her to provide
for her spiritual safety, and to recommend her soul to God, whereto she mildly answered, “That I have done long ago.' She sate up six days together without any sleep, and yet was she not bereaved of understanding, but had the use thereof (even after her speech failed) as appeared by divers motions of her eyes and hands lifted up, when she was required by the Bishops to give tes. timony of the hope and comfort she had in God. It is reported, that when she was demanded whom she would bave to sit in her seat after her death, she made answer, No base person, but a King. Afterwards (when she could not speak) being moved a second time to express her meaning touching that matter, and that (if she would have the King of Scots to succeed her) she should hold up her hand in token of assent, she forthwith lifted up her hand to her head, and turned it round in the form of a circle, discovering thereby (as it was said) what she had long before concealed. These reports, whether they were true indeed, or given out of purpose by such as would have them so to be believed, it is hard to say. Sure I am they did no hurt.
During the time of her sickness, the people began more boldly to discover their affections, and variable rumors were spread in the city. The wealthier sort feared sudden uproars and tumults; and the needy and loose persons desired them. Such as inhabited the suburbs carried their plate and treasure into the city, as a place of most safety, by reason of continual strong watches kept there. Then some spared not to say openly that the Queen was past recovery: others affirmed that she was already dead, and (to procure more credit to their reports), would name the very bour of her death; adding further, that it was only concealed in policy, till some things were settled for the security of the state.
Toward the close of these Observations, says Mr. Ellis, the writer has recorded the remarks and censures of the populace as they stood to see the Queen's funeral. Whatever may be the real value of these remarks, they form a picture, and are worth preserving. They were uttered without restraint, at a moment of national interest, when every man saw change before him, and when every one's judgment prompted some reflection. Having described the open chariot, drawn by four horses, wherein lay the body of the dead Queen, embalmed and inclosed in lead; over it, he says, was her image in her Parlia'ment robes, with a crown on her head, and a sceptre in her hand, all exquisitely framed to resemble the life.
* Alluding to the Lady Arabella Seyinour.