Page:The house of Cecil.djvu/253

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ON the death of Salisbury the political talent of the family fell into abeyance, not to be revived for two hundred and fifty years. His only son, William, inherited his title, but little of his intelli- gence, and none of his practical capacity for affairs. He was born in 1591, Queen Elizabeth acting as his godmother, and was educated at Sherborne School, and St. John's College, Cam- bridge. A weakly youth, of " lean, spare body," his studies were interrupted by his ill-health, and still more by his too indulgent father, who kept him at home on the slightest pretext. He was created a Knight of the Bath in January, 1605, and in the following August, on the occasion of the King's visit to Cambridge, both Lord Cranborne, as he was now styled, and his father, were granted the degree of M.A. On December ist, 1608, he was married very privately to Catherine, youngest daughter of Thomas Howard, Earl of Suffolk, and sister of the notorious Countess of Essex, and immediately after the wedding, went for a tour in France. 1 He was again travelling in France and Italy two

��1 He was between Montreuil and AbbeVille on December Chamberlain to Carleton, December 23rd, 1608 (Court and Times of James I., I. 83).

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