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1238 [1237]

K. Hen. 8. The trouble of Queene Catherine Parre.

feare thereof, MarginaliaThe Queene in an agony. fell incontinent into a great melancholy and agony, bewayling and takyng on in such sorte, as was lamentable to see: as certayne of her Ladies and gentlewomen beyng yet alyue, which were then present about her, can testifie.

The Kyng hearyng what perplexitie she was in, almost to the perill and danger of her lyfe, sent hys Phisitions vnto her. Who traueling about her, and seyng what extremitie she was in, did what they could for her recouery. MarginaliaD. Wendy the kinges Phisition sent to the Q. Thē Wendy, who knew the case better then the other, and perceiuing by her wordes what the matter was, accordyng to that the kyng before had tolde hym: for the comforting of her heauy mynde, began to breake with her in secret maner, touchyng the sayd Articles deuised against her, which he hymselfe (he sayd ) knew right well to be true: although he stode in daunger of his lyfe, if euer he were knowen to vtter the same to any liuing creature. Neuertheles, partly for the safety of her lyfe, and partly for the discharge of hys owne conscience, hauyng remorse to consent to the shedyng of innocent bloud, MarginaliaThe exhortation of D. Wendy to the Queene. he could not but geue her warning of that mischiefe that hāged ouer her head, besechyng her most instantly to vse all secrecie in that behalfe, and exhorted her somewhat to frame and conforme her selfe vnto the kings mynde, saying he dyd not doubt, but if she would so do, and shew her humble submission vnto hym, she should finde him gracious and fauourable vnto her.

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MarginaliaThe kinges comming to the Q. to comfort her. It was not long after this, but the king hearing of the daungerous state wherin she yet still remayned: came vnto her himselfe. Vnto whome, after that she had vttered her griefe, fearing lest his maiestie (she sayd) had taken displeasure with her, and had vtterly forsaken her: he like a louing husband with swete and comfortable wordes so refreshed & appeased her carefull mynd, that she vpon the same beganne somewhat to recouer, and so the kyng after he had taried there about the space of an houre, departed.

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After this the Queene remembring with her selfe the wordes that M. Wendy had said vnto her, deuised how by some good oportunitie she might repayre to the kinges presence. And so first commaundyng her ladies to conuey away their bookes, which were agaynst the law, the next night followyng after supper, she (wayted vpon only by the lady Harbert her sister and the Lady Lane, who caried the candle before her) went vnto the kinges bed chamber, whome she found sittyng and talking with certaine Gentlemen of hys chamber. Whom when the kyng did behold, very curteously he welcomed her, and breaking of the talke, which before her commyng he had wyth the Gentlemen aforesayde, began of himselfe, contrary to his maner before accustomed, to enter into talke of religion: seemyng as it were, desirous to be resolued by the Queene of certeine doubtes which he propounded.

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The Queene perceiuyng to what purpose thys talke did tende, not being vnprouided in what sort to behaue her selfe towardes the kyng, wyth such aunsweres resolued his questions as the tyme and oportunitie present did require, myldly and with a reuerent countenaunce aunsweryng agayne after this maner.

MarginaliaThe Queenes politick submission to the king. Your Maiestie (quoth shee) doth right well know, neither I my selfe am ignoraunt, what great imperfection and weakenes by our first creation, is alotted vnto vs womē, to be ordeyned and appointed as inferiour and subiect vnto man as our head, from which head all our direction ought to proceede: and that, as God made man to his owne shape and lykenes, whereby he beyng indued with more speciall giftes of perfection, myght rather be styrred to the contemplation of heauenly thinges, and to the earnest endeuour to obey hys commaundementes: euen so also made he woman of man, of whom and by whom shee is to be gouerned, commaunded and directed. Whose womanly weakenes and naturall imperfection, ought to be tolerated, ayded and borne withall, so that by his wisedome such thynges as be lacking in her, ought to be supplyed.

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Sithens therfore that God hath appoynted such a naturall difference betwene man and woman, and your Maiestie beyng so excellent in giftes and ornamentes of wisedome, and I a seely poore woman so much inferiour in all respects of nature vnto you: how then commeth it now to passe that your Maiestie in such diffuse causes of Religion, will seme to require my iudgement? Which when I haue vttered and sayd what I can, yet must I, & will I referre my iudgement in this and all other cases to your Maiesties wisedome, as my onely anker, supreme head and gouerner here in earth next vnder God, to leane vnto.

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Not so by Saint Mary, quoth the kyng. You are become a Doctor, Kate, to instruct vs, (as we take it) and not to be instructed, or directed by vs.

If your Maiestie take it so (quoth the Queene) then hath your Maiestie very much mistaken me, who haue euer bene of the opinion, to thinke it very vnseemely and preposterous for the woman to take vpon her the office of an instructer or teacher to her Lord and husband, but rather to learne of her husband, & to be taught by hym. And where I haue with your Maiesties leaue heretofore bene bolde to holde talke wyth your Maiestie, wherein sometimes in opinions there hath seemed some difference, I haue not done it so much to maintayne opinion, as I did it rather to minister talke, not onely to the end that your Maiestie myght with lesse griefe passe ouer this painefull time of your infirmitie, being intētiue to our talke and hoping that your maiestie should reape some ease therby: but also that I hearing you maiesties learned discourse, might receaue to my selfe some profite therof. Wherin I assure your maiestie I haue not missed any part of my desire in that behalfe, alwayes referring my selfe in all such matters vnto your maiestie, as by ordinaunce of nature it is conuenient for me to do.

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MarginaliaPerfect agrement betweene the K. & the Q. And is it euen so sweete hart, quoth the kyng? And tended your argumentes to no worse an end? Then perfect friendes we are now agayne, as euer at any time heretofore: and as he satte in his chayre embracing her in his armes & kyssing her, he added this saying: that it did him more good at that tyme to heare those wordes of her owne mouth, then if he had heard present newes of an hūdreth thousand pounds in money fallen vnto him. And with great signes and tokens of marueilous ioy and liking, with promises and assurances, neuer agayne in any sort more to mistake her, entering into other very pleasaunt discourses with the Queene and the Lordes, & Gentlemen standing by, in the end (being very far on the night) he gaue her leaue to depart. Whom in her absence to the stāders by, he gaue as singular and as affectuous commendations, as before tyme to the Byshop & the Chauncelor (who then were neither of them present) he seemed to mislike of her.

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MarginaliaThe K. abhorred the malicious workeings of the bloudy Papistes. Now then (God be thanked) the kinges mynde was cleane altered, and he detested in his hart (as afterwards he plainely shewed) this tragicall practise of those cruell Cayphases: who nothing vnderstanding of the kinges well reformed mynde, and good disposition towarde the Queene, were busily occupied about thinking and prouiding for their next dayes labour, which was the day determined to haue caried the Queene to the Tower.

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MarginaliaThis purpose being altered that the ladies should be first taken it was then appoynted that they with the Q. should altogether be apprehended in maner as is here declared. The day and almost the houre appointed beyng come, the king being disposed in the after noone to take the ayre (waited vpon with two Gentlemen onely of his bed chamber) went into the Garden, whether the queene also came, being sent for by the kyng hymselfe, the three Ladies aboue named, alone waiting vppon her. Wyth whom the king at that time disposed himselfe to be as pleasant as euer he was in all his life before: When sodainly in the middest of theyr myrth, the houre determined being come, in commeth the Lord Chauncellour into the Garden, wyth a fourtye of the kynges garde at his heeles, with purpose in deede to haue taken the queene together with the three Ladies aforesayd, whom they had before purposed to apprehend alone, euen then vnto the Tower. Whom the king sternely beholdyng, breaking of his myrth with the Queene, stepping a litle a side, called the Chauncellour vnto hym. Who vppon hys knees spake certaine wordes vnto the kyng, but what they were (for that they were softly spoken, and the king a good pretye distance from the Queene) it is not well knowne: but it is most certayne that the kinges replying vnto hym was, MarginaliaThe K. reuyleth Wrisley L. Chauncelour. knaue, for his aunswere: yea, arrant knaue, beast, and foole, MarginaliaThe L. Chāncelour commaunded to auaunte out of the K. sight. and with that the kyng commaunded him presently to auaunt out of presence. Whiche wordes although they were vttered somewhat low, yet were they so vehemently whispered out by the king, that the Queene did easely with her Ladyes aforesayd ouer heare them: which had been not a litle to her comfort, if she had knowen at that time þe wholl cause of his cōming so perfectly, as after she knew it. MarginaliaWrisleis deuises & Winchesters platforme lye in the duste. Thus departed the L. Chauncelor out of the Kings presence as he came, with all his trayne, the whole mould of all his deuise being vtterly broken.

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The King after his departure immediatly returned to þe Queene. Whom she perceiuing to be very much chafed (albeit comming towardes her he inforced himselfe to put on a mery countenaunce) with as sweete wordes as shee coulde vtter, endeuoured to qualyfie the Kinge his displeasure wt request vnto his maiestye in the behalfe of the L.Chauncelor, whom hee seemed to be offended with all: MarginaliaThe Q. maketh excuse for her enemy. saying for hys excuse, that albeit she knew not what iust cause his maiesty had at that time to be offended with him, yet she thought þt ignorance not will, was the cause of his erroure: and so besought his Maiestie (if the cause were not very haynous,) at her humble suite to take it.

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Ah poore soule (quoth hee) thou litle knowest how euill

hee
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