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1387 [1387]

K. Henry. 8. The storye and life of the Lorde Cromwell.

MarginaliaCromwell commended to the kyng by Syr Christopher Hales Maister of the Rolles.uour and good lykyng to Cromwell, that hee commended hym to the kyng, as a man most fitte for hys purpose, hauyng then to do agaynst the Pope. MarginaliaCromwell cōplayned of to the kyng.But here before is to bee vnderstand, that Cromwell had greatly bene complayned of, and diffamed by certeine of authoritie about þe kyng, for his rude maner and homely dealyng in defacyng the Monkes houses, and in handlyng of their aultars. &c. Wherfore the kyng hearyng of the name of Cromwell, began to deteste þe mētion of him: neither lacked there some standers by, who with reuylyng woordes ceased not to encrease and inflame the kynges hatred agaynst hym. What their names were, it shall not nede here to recite. MarginaliaThe Lorde Rußell Earle of Bedford, through the policie of Cromwell, escaped at Bononie.Among other there present at the same hearyng, was þe Lord Russell Earle of Bedford, whose life Cromwel before had preserued at Bononie, through politicke conueyance, at what time, the sayd Earle cōmyng secretly in the kynges affaires, was there espied, and therfore beyng in great daunger to be taken, through the meanes and policie of Cromwell escaped.

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MarginaliaThe L. Russell commendeth Cromwell to the kyng.This Lord Russell therfore not forgettyng the olde benefites past, and with like gratuitie willyng agayne to requite that he had receaued, in a vehement boldenes stoode forth, to take vppon hym the defense of Thomas Cromwell, vtteryng before the kyng many commendable woordes in the behalfe of hym, and declaring withall howe by hys singular deuise and policie, he had done for him at Bononie, being there in the kynges affaires, in extreme perill. And for asmuch as now his Maiestie had to do with the pope, his great enemie, there was (he thought) in all England, none so apt for þe kinges purpose, which could say or do more in that matter then could Thomas Cromwell, and partly gaue the kyng to vnderstand wherein. The kyng hearyng this, and specialy marking the latter ende of this talke, was contented and willing to talke with hym, to heare and know what he could say.

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Thys was not so priuely done, but Cromwell had knowledge incontinent, that the kyng would talke with him, and wherupon: and therefore prouiding beforehand for the matter, had in readynes the copie of the Byshops othe, whiche they vse commonly to make to the Pope at their consecration, MarginaliaCromwell brought to talke with the kyng.and so beyng called for, was brought to the kyng in hys garden at Westminster, which was about þe yeare of our Lord. 1530.

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MarginaliaCromwells wordes to the kyng, concerning the premunire of the Clergie.Cromwell after most loyall obeysaunce 

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It is extremely unlikely that Cromwell unveiled this master plan in his first interview with the King. Cromwell's first services for Henry were in dealing with the lands that Wolsey had confiscated from monastic houses for his colleges and Cromwell may well have advised Henry regarding those.

, doyng his duetie to the kyng, accordyng as he was demaunded, made hys declaration in all pointes, this especially makyng manifest vnto his highnes, how his princely authoritie was abused within his owne realme, by the Pope and hys Clergie, who beyng sworne vnto hym, were afterward dispensed from the same, and sworne a new vnto þe Pope, so that he was but as halfe a king, & they but halfe his subiectes in his owne land: which (sayd he) was derogatorye to his crowne, & vtterly preiudiciall to the common lawes of this Realme: Declaryng therupon how his Maiestie might accumulate to him selfe great riches, so much as al the Clergie in this Realme was worth, if it so pleased hym to take the occasion now offered. The king giuing good eare to this, and liking right well his aduise, required, if hee could auouch that whiche he spake. All this he could (said he) auouch to be certeine, so well, as that he had the copie of their owne othe to the Pope there present to shewe, and that no lesse also hee could manifestly proue, if hys highnes would giue him leaue: and therewith shewed the Byshops othe vnto the kyng.

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MarginaliaCromwell sent by the kyng to the conuocation house.The kyng folowyng the veyne of his counsell, tooke his ryng of his finger, and first admittyng him into his seruice, sent him therewith to the conuocation house among the Byshops. Cromwell commyng with the kynges signet boldly into the Clergie house, and there placyng hym selfe among the Byshops (W. Warrham beyng then Archbishop) began to make his Oration, declaryng to them the authoritie of a kyng, and the of-fice of subiectes, and especially the obedience of Byshops, and Churche men vnder publicke lawes, necessarely prouided for the profite and quiet of the commō wealth. Whiche lawes notwithstandyng, they had all transgressed, and highly offended in derogation of the kynges royall estate, fallyng in the law of premunire, in that not onely they had consented to the power Legatiue of the Cardinall, but also in that they had all sworne to the Pope, contrary to the fealtie of their soueraigne Lord þe kyng, and therfore had forfaited to the kyng all their goodes, catelles, landes, possessions, and what soeuer liuynges they had. The Byshops hearyng this, were not a litle amased, and first began to excuse and denye the facte. But after that Cromwell had shewed thē þe very copie of their oth made to þe Pope at their cōsecration, MarginaliaFor the copie of the Byshops othe to the pope, read before pag. 1197. & the matter was so plaine that they could not denye it, they began to shrinke, & to fall to entreatie, desiryng respite to pause vpon the matter. MarginaliaThe Clergie cōdemned in the Premunire.Notwithstāding the end therof so fell out, that to be quitte of that premunire, by Acte of Parlament, it coste them to the kyng for both the Prouinces, Caunterbury and Yorke, no lesse then. 118840. poundes, whiche was about the yeare of our Lord. 1530. whereof before you may read more at large 

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See 1570, p. 1125; 1576, p. 1027 and 1583, p. 1056.

pag. 1195.

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MarginaliaSyr Thomas Cromwell made knight, and maister of the kings Iewel house.After this an. 1522. Syr Thomas Cromwell growyng in great fauour with the kyng, was made Knyght, & Master of the kinges Iewell house 

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Cromwell was, in fact, made master of the jewels on 14 April 1532.

, and shortly after was admitted also into the kynges Counsell, whiche was about the commyng in of Queene Anne Bullen. MarginaliaCromwell made maister of the Rolles.Furthermore, within ij. yeares after þe same, an. 1524 hee was made maister of the Rolles, Doct. Taylour being discharged.

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MarginaliaCromwell made Knight of the Garter.Thus Cromwell springing vp in fauour and honor after this, in the yeare. 1527. a litle before the byrth of kyng Edward, was made knyght of the Garter, MarginaliaL. Cromwell made Earle of Essex, great Chamberlaine of England, and Vicegerent to the kyng.and not long after 

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Cromwell was not made earl of Essex and lord great chamberlain until 18 April 1540.

, was aduaūced to the Earledome of Essex, and made great Chamberlayn of England. Ouer and besides all whiche honours, he was constitute also Vicegerent to þe kyng, representing his person. Which office although it standeth well by the law, yet seldome hath there bene sene any besides this Cromwel alone, either to haue susteined it, or els to haue so furnished the same with counsell and wisedome, as Cromwell dyd. And thus much hetherto concernyng the steppes and degrees of the Lord Cromwels rising vp to dignitie, and high estate.

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Now somewhat would be sayd likewise of the noble actes, the memorable exāples, and worthy vertues not drowned by ease of honour in hym, but encreased rather and quickened by aduauncemēt of authoritie and place, to worke more abundantly in þe cōmon wealth. MarginaliaThe actes & doinges of the Lord Cromwell, described.Among the whiche his woorthy Actes and other manifold vertues, in this one chiefly aboue all other ryseth his commendation, for hys singulare zeale, and laborious trauaile bestowed in restoryng the true Churche of Christ, and subuertyng the Synagoge of Antichrist, the Abbayes I meane, and religious houses of Friers and Monkes. For so it pleased almighty God, by the meanes of the sayd Lord Cromwell, to induce þe kyng, to suppresse first the Chauntreis, thē the Frier houses, and small Monasteries, till at length all the Abbayes, in England, both great and lesse, were vtterly ouerthrowen, and pluckte vp by the rootes. The which Acte and enterprise of him, as it may giue a president of singular zeale to all realmes Christened, which no Prince yet to this day scarse dare folow: so to this Realme of England it wrought such benefite and commoditie, as the fruite therof yet remaineth, and wil remaine still in the Realme of Englād, though we seme litle to feele it. Rudely and simplye I speake what I suppose, without preiudice of other whiche can inferre any better reason. MarginaliaThe Lord Cromwell a profitable instrument in suppressing Abbayes.In the meane tyme my reason is this: that if God had not raised vp this Cromwell as he dyd, to be the instrumēt of rootyng out these Abbayes and Celles of straunge Religion, what other men see, I know not:

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