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WILLIAM CAXTON-JOHN FISHER.

WILLIAM CAXTON, have withdraw him fro to do well. . . . He celebrated as the first who introduced print- was ennobled in his life by many miracles. ing into England, was born in Kent about men horrible and hateful, he admonished

... And the very death, which is to all 1412, and died in 1492. “ Exclusively of the labours attached to the and admonished death to come to him, and

them to praise it. And, also, he warned working of his press as a new art, our typographer said, “ Death, my sister, welcome be to you." contrived, though well stricken in years, to translate not fewer than five thousand closely-printed And when he came at the last hour, he slept folio pages.

As a translator, therefore, he ranks in our Lord, of whom the friar saw the soul, among the most laborious, and, I would hope, not in manner of a star, like to the moon in the least successful, of his tribe.

quantity, and the sun in clearness. * The foregoing conclusion is the resnlt of a careful enumeration of all the books translated as well as printed by him; which [the translated books), it published in the modern fashion, would

JOHN FISHER, extend to nearly twenty-five octavo volumes.”— DIBDIN : Typographical Antiquitics.

born 1459, Margaret Professor of Divinity " Caxton, Mr. Warton (History of English | 1502, Bishop of Rochester 1504, was inhuPoetry] observes, by translating, or procuring manly executed by order of the tyrant to be translated, a great number of books from the Henry VIII. in 1535. French, greatly contributed to promote the state of literature in England. It was only in this way

“ The fame of his learning and virtues reaching that he could introduce his countrymen to the

the ears of Margaret, Countess of Richmond, knowledge of many valuable publications at a time mother of Henry VII., she chose him her chap. when an acquaintance with the learned languages lain and confessor; in which high station be bewas confined to a few ecclesiastics. Ancient learn- haved himself with so much wisdom and goodness ing had as yet made too little progress among us

that she committed herself entirely to his governto encourage him to publish the Roman authors in

ment and direction. It was by his counsel that their original tongue. Indeed, had not the French she undertook those magnificent foundations of furnished Caxton with materials, it is not probable St. John's and Christ's Colleges at Cambridge; that Virgil, Ovid, Cicero, and many other good established the divinity professorships in both writers, would, by the means of his press, have universities; and did many other acts of generbeen circulated in the English language as early osity for the propagation of learning and pietv. as the close of the fifteenth century."-CHALMERS:

The issue was a declaration from Fisher that Biog. Dict., viii. 512. See, also, The Life and

he would .gwear to the succession of Elizabeth); Typography of William Caxton, England's “ First

never dispute more about the marriage (to Anne Printer," etc., by William Blades, Lond., 1861-63,2 Boleyn); and promise allegiance to the king; but vols. 4to; and How to Tell a Caxton, by W. Blades, his conscience could not be convinced that the 1870, fp. 8vo.

marriage was not against the law of God. These

concessions did not satisfy the king; who was reFrom CAXTON'S TRANSLATION OF THE GOLDEN solved to let all his subjects see that there was no LEGEND, 1483, FOL.

mercy to be expected by any one who opposed his

will. ... He was beheaded about ten o'clock, Francis, servant and friend of Almighty aged almost 77: and his bead was fixed orer LonGod, was born in the city of Assyse, and don bridge the next day. was made a merchant until the 25th

year

of “Such was the tragical end of Fisher, 'which his age, and wasted his time by living vainly, left one of the greatest blots upon this kingdom's whom our Lord corrected by the scourge of proceedings.' as Burnet says in bis History of the sickness, and suddenly changed him into Reformation.' : : : Erasınus represents him as a

man of integrity, deep learning, sweetness of tem. another man ; so that he began to shine by per, and greatness of soul." -Chalmers's Bing. the spirit of prophecy. For on a time he, | Dict., xiv. 323, 326, 328. with other men of Peruse, was taken prisoner, and were put in a cruel prison, where From Bishop Fisher's Account OF THE all the other wailed and sorrowed, and he

CHARACTER OF MARGARET, COUNTESS OF only was glad and enjoyed. And when they

RICHMOND, IN HIS SERMON EXTITLED A had reproved him thereof, he answered,

MORNYNGE REMEMBRAUNCE HAD AT THE “Know ye,” said he, “that I am joyful, for

Moneth MYNDE OF MARGARETE, COCNTI shall be worshipped as a saint throughout

ESSE OF RYCHEMONDE AND DARBYE, Lond., all the world." .:. On a time, as this holy

by W. DE WORDE, 4to, sine anno (1509). man was in prayer, the devil called him Albeit she of her lineage were right thrice by his own name. And when the noble, yet nevertheless by marriage adjoinholy man had answered him, he said none ing of other blood, it took some increasein ihis world is so great a sinner, but if he ment. For in her tender age, she being convert him, our Lord would pardon him; endued with so great towardness of nature but who that sleeth himself with hard pen- and likelihood of inheritance, many suedi to ance, shall never find mercy. And anon bave had her to marriage. The Duke of this holy man knew by revelation the fal. Suffolk, which was then a man of great exlacy and deceit of the fiend, how he would perience, most diligently procured to have

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had her for his son and heir. Of the con- and three aves, and at every ave to make a trary part, King Henry VI. did make means kneeling. As for meditation, she had divers for Edmund his brother, then the Earl of books in French, wherewith she would ocRichmond. She, which as then was not cupy herself when she was weary of prayer. fully nine years old, doubtful in her mind Wherefore divers she did translate out of the what she were best to do, asked counsel of French into English. Her marvellous weepan old gentlewoman, whom she much loved ing they can bear witness of which hereand trusted, which did advise her to com- before have heard her confession, which be mend herself to St. Nicholas, the patron and divers and many, and at many seasons in helper of all true maidens, and to beseech the year, lightly every third day. Can also hiin to put in her mind what she were best record the same that were present at any to do! This counsel she followed, and made time she was houshilde (received the comher praver so full often, but specially that munion), which was full nigh a dozen times night, when she should the morrow after every year, what floods of tears there issued make answer of her mind determinately. A forth of her eyes ! marvellous thiny !—the same night, as I have heard her tell many a time, as she lay in prayer, calling upon St. Nicholas, whether

NICCOLO DI BERNARDO sleeping or waking she could not assure, but about four of the clock in the morning,

MACCHIAVELLI, one appeared unto her, arrayed like a bishop, a famous Italian, diplomatist, statesman, and naming unto her Edmund, bade take and author, was born at Florence, 1469, and him unto her husband. And so by this died there, 1527. means she did incline her mind unto Ed- “We doubt whether any name in literary hismund the king's brother, and Earl of Rich- tory be so generally odious as that of the man mond, by whom she was made mother of the whose character and writings we now propose to king that dead is (whose soul God pardon), consider. The terms in which he is cominonly and grand-dame to our sovereign lørd King described would seem to import that he was tho Henry VIII., which now, by the grace of Tompter, the Evil Principle, the discoverer of

ambition and revenge, the original inventor of God, governeth the realm. So what by perjury, and that before the publication of his lineage, what by affinity, she had thirty fatal Prince, there had never been a hypocrite, a kings and queens within the four degree of tyrant, or a traitor, a simulated virtue, or a conmarriage unto her, besides earls, marquisses, venient crime. . , Tho Church of Rome has produkes, and princes. And thus much we

nounced his works accursed things. Nor have have spoken of her nobleness. In

our own countrymen been backward in testifying

their opinion of his merits. Out of his surname prayer, every day at her uprising, which they have coined an epithet for a knave, and out commonly was not long after five of the of his Christian name a synonyme for the Devil. clock, she began certain devotions; and so ... To & modern statesman the form of the Dis. after them, with one of her gentlewomen, courses may appear to be puerile. In truth Livy the matins of our lady, which kept her to

is not an historian on whom implicit reliance can then she came into her closet, where then

be placed, even in cases where he must bave pos

sessed considerable means of information. And with her chaplain, she said also matins of the

the first decade, to which Macchiavelli has conday; and after that daily heard four or five fined himself, is scarcely entitled to more credit masses upon her knees; so continuing in than our Chronicle of British Kings who reigned her prayers and devotions unto the hour of before the Roman invasion. dinner, which of the eating day was ten of tor is indebted to Livy for little more than a few the clock, and upon the fasting day eleven. texts which he might as onsily bave extracted After dinner full truly she would go to her

from the Vulgate or the Decameron. The whole stations to three altars daily ; daily herdirges Edinburgh Perier, March, 1827, and in his works,

train of thought is original.”—LORD MACAULAY: and commendations she would say, and her complete, 1866, 8 vols. 8vo, v. 46, 75. even songs before supper, both of the day and of our lady, beside many other prayers

MACCHIAVELLI's DiscourSE,“ HOW HE THAT and psalters of David throughout the year;

WOULD SUCCEED MUST ACCOMMODATE TO and at night before she went to bed, she THE Times." failed not to resort unto her chapel, and there I have many times considered with mya large quarter of an hour to occupy her self that the occasion of every man's good derotions. No marvel, though all this long or bad fortune consists in his correspondtime her kneeling was to her painful, and so ence and accommodation with the times. painful that many times it caused in her We see some people acting furiously, and back pain and disease. And yet neverthe- with an impetus; others with more slowness less, daily when she was in health she failed and caution; and because both in the one not to say the crown of our lady, which and the other they are immoderate, and do after the manner of Rome containeth sixty not observe their just terms, therefore both

But the commenta

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of them do err; but his error and misfortune loss, and he and his country were both is least, whose customs suit and correspond ruined. with the times; and who comports himself Pope Julius XI., during the whole time in his designs according to the impulse of of his papacy, carried himself with great his own nature. Every one can tell how vigour and vehemence; and because the Fabius Maximus conducted his army, and times were agreeable, he prospered in everywith what carefulness and caution he pro- thing; but had the times altered, and receeded, contrary to the ancient heat and quired other counsels, he had certainly been boldness of the Romans, and it happened ruined, because he could never have comthat grave way was more conformable to plied. And the reason why we cannot those times; for Hannibal, coming young change so easily with the times, is twofold: and brisk into Italy, and being elated with first, because we cannot readily oppose ourhis good fortune, as having twice defeated selves against what we naturally desire; the armies of the Romans, that common- and next, because when we have often tried wealth having lost most of her best soldiers, one way, and have always been prosperous, and remaining in great fear and confusion, we can never persuade ourselves we could nothing could have happened more season- do so well any other; and this is the true ably to them than to have such a general cause why a prince's fortune varies so who, by his caution and cunctation, could strangely, because he varies the times, but keep the enemy at bay. Nor could any he does not alter the way of his administratimes have been more fortunate to his way tion. And it is the same in a commonof proceeding; for that that slow and delib- wealth: if the variation of the times be not erate way was natural in Fabius, and not observed, and their laws and customs altered affected, appeared afterwards, when Scipio, accordingly, many mischiefs must follow, being desirous to pass his army into Africa and the government be ruined, as we have to give the finishing blow to the war, Fabius largely demonstrated before; but those opposed it most earnestly, as one who could alterations of their laws are more slow in a not force or dissemble his nature, which commonwealth, because they are not so was rather to support wisely against the easily changed, and there is a necessity of difficulties that were upon him, than to such times as may shake the whole state, to search out for new. So that had Fabius which one man will not be sufficient, let directed, Hannibal had continued in Italy, him change his proceedings, and take new and the reason was because he did not con- measures, as he will. sider the times were altered, and the method From Knight's Half-Hours with the Best of the war was to be changed with them. Authors. New edit., ii. 274. And if Fabius at that time had been king of Rome, he might well have been worsted in the war, as not knowing how to frame his counsels according to the variation of

HUGH LATIMER, the times. But there being in that com

born in Leicestershire, about 1472, became monwealth so many brave men, and excel, Bishop of Worcester in 1535, and was burnt lent commanders, of all sorts of tempers and

at the stake, in Oxford, with Bishop Ridley, humours, fortune would have it, that, as

Oct. 16, 1555. Fabius was ready, in hard and difficult times, to sustain the enemy, and continue

“« On the lamented death of Edward he was imthe war, so, afterwards, when affairs were prisoned, first in the Tower, and then nt Oxford, in a better posture, Scipio was presented to along with Cranmer and Ridley. After various finish and conclude it. And hence it is that Fox gives a pitiful and touching account of his

delays he was tried and condemned to the stake. an aristocracy or free state is longer lived, appearance before his persecutors, wearing an old and generally more fortunate than a princi- thread bare Bristol frieze gown girded to bis body pality, because in the first they are more with a penny leather girdle, his Testament sus. fexible, and can frame themselves better to pended from his girdle by a leathern sling, and his the diversity of the times: for a prince, spectacles without a case hung from his neck upon being accustomed to one way, is hardly to of October, 1555, without Bocardo gate, on a

his breast.' He suffered along with Ridley, 16th be got out of it, though perhaps the varia- spot opposite Balliol College, now marked by a tion of the times requires it very much. splendid martyr's monument. Latimer's charac. Piero Soderino (whom I have mentioned ter excites our admiration by its mixture of simbefore) proceeded with great gentleness and plicity and heroism. He is simple as a child, and humanity in all his actions; and he and his yet daring for the truth, without shrinking or

ostentation. He is more consistent than Cranmer, country prospered whilst the times were

more tolerant than Ridley, if less learned and according; but when the times changed, polished than either. His sermons are rare speci. and there was a necessity of laying aside mens of vigorous eloquence, which read fresh and that meekness and humility, Piero was at vivid and powerful now, after three centuries.

SIR THOMAS MORE.

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The humorous Saxon scorn and invective with the king. But I pray you where are those which he lashes the vices of the times are, perhaps, servants nowadays? Indeed I fear me their most noted characteristics; but they are also

there be but very few of such faithful servremarkable for their clear and homely statements

ants. Now these shepherds, I say, they of Christian doctrine, and the faithfulness with which they exhibit the simple ideal of the Chris- watch the whole night, they attend upon tian life, in contrast to all hypocrisies and preten- their vocation, they do according to their sions of religion. In all things,—in his sermons, calling, they keep their sheep, they run not in his reforms, in his character,---Latimer was hither and thither, spending the time in eminently practical." —Rev. Joux Tulloch, D.D., vain, and neglecting their office and calling. Principal of St. Mary's College, St. Andrews. No, they did not so. Ilere, by these shepImperial Dict. of Univ. Biog., v. 115.

herds, men may learn to attend upon their Tue SHEPHERDS OF BETHLEHEM.

offices and callings. I would wish that cler

gymen, the curates, parsons, and vicars, the I pray you to whom was the nativity of bishops, and all other spiritual persons, Christ first opened? To the bishops or great would learn this lesson by these poor sher lords which were at that time at Bethlehem ? | herds, which is this,-to abide by their Or to those jolly damsels with their far- flocks and by their sheep, to tarry amongst dingales, with their round-abouts, or with them, to be careful over them; not to run their bracelets ? No, no: they had too many hither and thither after their own pleasure, lets to trim and dress themselves, so that but to tarry by their benefices and feed their they could have no time to hear of the na- sheep with the food of God's word, and to tivity of Christ; their minds were so occu; keep hospitality, and so to feed them, both pied otherwise that they were not allowed soul and body. For I tell you, these poor, to hear of him. But his nativity was re- unlearned shepherds shall condemn many a vealed first to the shepherds, and it was re- stout and great-learned clerk: for these shepvealed unto them in the night-time, when herds had but the care and charge over brute every body was at rest; then they heard this beasts, and yet were diligent to keep them, joyful tidings of the Saviour of the world; and to feed them, and the other have the for these shepherds were keeping their sheep care over God's lambs, which he bought in the night season from the wolf and other with the death of his son; and yet they are beasts, and from the fox; for the sheep in so careless, so negligent, so slothful over that country do lamb two times in the year, them; yea, and the most part intendeth not and therefore it was needful for the sheep to to feed the sheep, but they long to be fed of have a shepherd to keep them. And here the sheep; they seek only their own pasnote the diligence of these shepherds; for times, they care for no more. But what whether their sheep were their own, or said Christ to Peter? What said he? Petre, whether they were servants, I cannot tell, amas me? (Peter, lovest thou me?) Peter for it is not expressed in the book; but it is made answer, Yes. Then feed my sheep. most like they were servants, and their mas- And so the third time he commanded Peter ters had put them in trust to keep their to feed his sheep. But our clergymen do sheep.

declare plainly that they love not Christ, beNow, if these shepherds had been deceit- cause they feed not his fock. If they had ful fellows, that when their masters had put earnest love to Christ, no doubt they would them in trust to keep their sheep they had show their love, they would feed his sheep. been drinking in the alehouse all night, as

Latimer's Sermons. some of our servants do nowadays, surely the angel had not appeared unto them to have told them this great joy and good tid. ings. And here all servants may learn hy

SIR THOMAS MORE, these shepherds to serve truly and diligently born 1480, executed under Henry VIII., unto their masters; in what business soever 1535. His works were published in Latin, they are set to do, let them be painful and Lovanii, 1565 et 1566, fol. ; in English, diligent, like as Jacob was unto his master Lond., 1557, fol. ; best Latin edit., Francf., Laban. Oh what a painful, faithful, and 1689, fol. trusty man was he! He was day and night “ The indictment was then read by the attorneyat his work, keeping his sheep truly, as he general. It set forth that Sir Thomas More, traiwas put in trust to do; and when any chance torously imagining and attempting to deprive the happened that any thing was lost he made king of his title as Supreme Head of the Church,” it good and restored it again of his own. So

" The usual punishment for treason was comlikewise was Eleazarus a painful man, a

muted, as it had been with Fisher, to death upon

the scaffold; and this last favour was communi. faithful and trusty servant. Such a servant cated as a special instance of the royal clemency. was Joseph, in Egypt, to his master Potiphar. More's wit was always ready. "God forbid,' he

So likewise was Daniel unto his master I answered, that the king should show any more

etc.

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SIR THOMAS MORE.

:

such mercy unto any of my friends; and God mind, in which nature teaches us to delight, bless all my posterity from such pardons. a pleasure. And thus they cautiously limit The scaffold had been awkwardly erected, and

pleasure only to those appetites to which sbook as he placed his foot upon the ladder. See me safe up,' he said to Kingston; 'for my

nature leads us; for they reckon that nature coming down I can shift for myself.' He began

leads us only to those delights to which to speak to the people, but the sheriff begged him reason as well as sense carries us, and by not to proceed, and he contented himself with ask- which we neither injure any other person ing for their prayers, and desiring them to bear

nor let go greater pleasures for it, and which witness for him that he died in the faith of the do not draw troubles on us after them: but holy Catholic Church, and a faithful servant of they look upon those delights which men, God and the king. He then repeated the Miserere psalm on his knees; and when he had ended, and by a foolish though common mistake, call had risen, the executioner, with an emotion which pleasure, as if they could change the nature promised'ill for the manner in which his part in of things, as well as the use of words, as the matter would be accomplished, begged his things that not only do not advance our hapforgiveness. More kissed him. “Thou art to do piness, but do rather obstruct it very much, me the greatest benefit that I can receive,' he said. • Pluck up thy spirit, man, and be not afraid to do minds of those that once go into them with

because they do so entirely possess the thine office. My neck is very short. Take heed therefore that thou strike not awry for saving of

a false notion of pleasure, that there is no thine honesty. The executioner offered to tie his room left for truer and purer pleasures. eyes. 'I will cover them myself,' he said; and There are many things that in themselves binding them in a cloth, which he had brought have nothing that is truly delighting: on the with him, he knelt and laid his head upon the

contrary, they have a good deal of bitterness block. The fatal stroke was about to fall, when

in them; and yet by our perverse appetites he signed for a moment's delay, while he moved aside his beard. Pity that should be cut,' he

after forbidden objects, are not only ranked murmured, that has not committed treason. among the pleasures, but are made even the With which strange words, the strangest perhaps greatest designs of life. Among those who ever uttered at such a time, the lips most famous pursue these sophisticated pleasures they through Europe for eloquence and wisdom closed reckon those whom I mentioned before, who forever."-FROUDE: History of Europe, ii., chap. think themselves really the better for having ix.

fine clothes, in which they think they are The UTOPIAN IDEA OF PLEASURE; FROM

doubly mistaken, both in the opinion that Bishop Burnet's TRANSLATION OF More's

they have of their clothes, and in the opin

ion that they have of themselves; for if you Utopia, Lond., 1684, 8vo.

consider the use of clothes, why should a They think it is an evidence of true wis- tine thread be thought better than a coarse dom for a man to pursue his own advantages one? And yet that sort of men, as if they as far as the laws allow it. They account had some real advantages beyond others, it piety to prefer the public good to one's and did not owe it wholly to their mistakes, private concerns. But they think it unjust look big, and seem to fancy themselves to for a man to seek for his own pleasure by be the more valuable on that account, and snatching another man's pleasures from him. imagine that a respect is due to them for the And, on the contrary, they think it a sign sake of a rich garment, to which they would of a gentle and good soul for a man to dis- not have pretended if they had been more pense with his own advantage for the good meanly clothed; and they resent it as an of others; and that by so doing a good man atfront if that respect is not paid them.... finds as much pleasure one way as he parts Another sort of bodily pleasure is that which with another: for, as he may expect the like consists in a quiet and good constitution of from others when he may come to need it, body, by which there is an entire healthiso, if that should fail him, yet the sense of ness spread over all the parts of the body a good action, and the reflections that one not allayed with any disease. This, when makes on the love and gratitude of those it is free from all mixture of pain, gives an whom he has obliged, gives the mind more inward pleasure of itself, even though it pleasure than the body could have found in should not be excited by any external and that from which it had restrained itself. delighting object; and although this pleasure They are also persuaded that God will make does not so vigorously affect the sense, nor up the loss of those small pleasures with a act so strongly upon it, yet as it is the vast and endless joy, of which religion does greatest of all pleasures, so almost all the easily convince a good soul. Thus, upon Utopians reckon it the foundation and basis an inquiry into the whole matter, they of all the other joys of life; since this alono reckon that all our actions, and even all our makes one's state of life to be easy and dee virtues, terminate in pleasure, as in our sirable; and when this is wanting, a man is chief end and greatest happiness; and they really capable of no other pleasure. They call every motion or state, either of body or look upon indolence and freedom from pain,

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