The Divorce of Catherine of Aragon/Chapter 7

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Call of Parliament—Wolsey to be called to account—Anxiety of the Emperor to prevent a quarrel—Mission of Eustace Chapuys—Long interview with the King—Alarm of Catherine—Growth of Lutheranism—The English clergy—Lord Darcy's Articles against Wolsey—Wolsey's fall—Departure of Campeggio—Letter of Henry to the Pope—Action of Parliament—Intended reform of the Church—Alienation of English feeling from the Papacy.

On the collapse of the commission it was at once announced that the King would summon a Parliament. For many years Wolsey had governed England as he pleased. The King was now to take the reins in his own hands. The long-suffering laity were to make their voices heard, and the great Cardinal understood too well that he was to be called to account for his stewardship. The Queen, who could think of nothing but her own wrongs, conceived that the object must be some fresh violence to herself. She had requested the Pope to issue a minatory brief forbidding Parliament to meddle with her. She had mistaken the purpose of its meeting, and she had mistaken the King's character. Important as the divorce question might be, a great nation had other things to think of which had waited too long. It had originated in an ambitious scheme of Wolsey to alter the balance of power in Europe, and to form a new combination which the English generally disliked. Had his policy been successful he would have been continued in office, with various consequences which might or might not have been of advantage to the country. But he had failed miserably. He had drawn the King into a quarrel with his hereditary ally. He had entangled him, by ungrounded assurances, in a network of embarrassments, which had been made worse by the premature and indecent advancement of the Queen's intended successor. For this the Cardinal was not responsible. It was the King's own doing, and he had bitterly to pay for it. But Wolsey had misled his master into believing that there would be no difficulty. In the last critical moment he had not stood by him as the King had a right to expect; and, in the result, Henry found himself summoned to appear as a party before the Pope, the Pope himself being openly and confessedly a creature in the hands of the Emperor. No English sovereign had ever before been placed in a situation so degrading.

Parliament was to meet for other objects—objects which could not be attained while Wolsey was in power and were themselves of incalculable consequence. But Anne Boleyn was an embarrassment, and Henry did for the moment hesitate whether it might not be better to abandon her. He had no desire to break the unity of Christendom or to disturb the peace of his own kingdom for the sake of a pretty woman. The Duke of Norfolk, though he was Anne's uncle, if he did not oppose her intended elevation, did nothing to encourage it. Her father, Lord Wiltshire, had been against it from the first. The Peers and the people would be the sufferers from a disputed succession, but they seemed willing to encounter the risk, or at least they showed no eagerness for the King's marriage with this particular person. If Reginald Pole is to be believed, the King did once inform the Council that he would go no further with it. The Emperor, to make retreat easy to him, had allowed nothing to be said on the subject at Cambray, and had instructed the Pope to hold his hand and make no further movement. He sent a new Ambassador to England, on a mission of doulceur et amytié. Eustace Chapuys, the Minister whom he selected, was not perhaps the best selection which he could have made, and Lord Paget, who knew him well, has left an account of him not very favourable. "For Chapuys," he said, "I never took him for a wise man, but for one that used to speak cum summâ licentiâ whatsoever came in buccam, without respect of honesty or truth, so it might serve his turn, and of that fashion it is small mastery to be a wise man. He is a great practicer, with which honest term we cover tale-telling, lying, dissimuling, and flattering."[1] Chapuys being the authority for many of the scandals about Henry, this description of him by a competent observer may be borne in remembrance; but there can be no question that Charles sent him to England on an embassy of peace, and one diplomatist is not always perhaps the fairest judge of another of the same trade. The King's hesitation, if he ever did hesitate, was not of long duration. He had been treated like a child, tricked, played with, trifled with, and he was a dangerous person to deal with in so light a fashion. Chapuys reached London in the beginning of September. On landing he found the citation to Rome had not been officially notified to the King, as a morsel too big for him to swallow.[2] The King received him politely, invited him to dine in the palace, and allowed him afterwards to be introduced to Catherine, who was still residing at the court. Three days after he had a long interview with Henry. His commission, he said, was to smooth all differences between the King and his master. The King responded with equal graciousness, but turned the conversation upon those differences themselves. The Emperor, he said, had not used him well. The advocation to Rome was absurd. He had written himself to the Pope with his own hand, telling him it was not only expedient but absolutely necessary that the cause should be tried in England. The Roman territories were still in the occupation of the Imperial troops. The Pope had committed it to two of his Cardinals, had solemnly promised that it should not be revoked, and that he would confirm any sentence which the Legates should pronounce. These engagements the Emperor had obliged the Pope to break. He himself had not proceeded upon light grounds. He was a conscientious prince, he said, who preferred his own salvation to all worldly advantages, as appeared sufficiently from his conduct in the affair. Had he been differently situated and not attentive to his conscience, he might have adopted other measures, which he had not taken and never would take.[3] Chapuys attempted to defend Clement. "Enough of that pope," Henry sharply interrupted. "This is not the first time that he has changed his mind. I have long known his versatile and fickle nature."[4] The Pope, he went on, "would never dare pronounce sentence, unless it favoured the Emperor."

Catherine was eagerly communicative. Chapuys learned from her that the King had offered that the case should be heard at Cambray—which she had, of course, refused. She was much alarmed about the Parliament, "the King having played his cards so well that he would have a majority of votes in his favour." It was quite certain that he meant to persevere. She professed outwardly that she was personally attached to the King; yet she desired Chapuys expressly to caution the Emperor against believing that his conduct had anything to do with conscience. The idea of separation, she said, had originated entirely in his own iniquity and malice, and when the treaty of Cambray was completed, he had announced it to her with the words: "My peace with the Emperor is made: it will last as long as you choose."[5]

Chapuys had been charged to ascertain the feeling of the English people. He found them generally well affected to the Queen. But the Lutheran heresy was creeping in. The Duke of Suffolk had spoken bitterly of Papal legates, and Chapuys believed if they had nothing to fear but the Pope's malediction, there were great numbers who would follow the Duke's advice and make Popes of the King and Bishops, all to have the divorce case tried in England.[6] The Queen was afraid of pressing her appeal, fearing that if the Commons in Parliament heard that the King had been summoned to Rome, measures injurious to her might easily be proposed and carried.[7] Even the Duke of Norfolk was not satisfactory. He professed to be devoted to the Emperor; he said he would willingly have lost a hand so that the divorce question should never have been raised; but it was an affair of theology and canon law, and he had not meddled with it. If the Emperor had remained neutral, instead of interfering, it would have been sooner settled.[8]

But, for the instant, the interests of the people of England were fixed on a subject more immediately close to them. The sins of the clergy had at last found them out. They pretended to be a supernatural order, to hold the keys of heaven and hell, to be persons too sacred for ordinary authority to touch. Their vices and their tyranny had made them and their fantastic assumptions no longer bearable, and all Europe was in revolt against the scandals of the Church and Churchmen. The ecclesiastical courts, as the pretended guardians of morality, had the laity at their mercy; and every offence, real or imaginary, was converted into an occasion of extortion. The courts were themselves nests of corruption; while the lives and habits of the order which they represented made ridiculous their affectations of superiority to common men. Clement's conduct of the divorce case was only a supreme instance of the methods in which the clerical tribunals administered what they called justice. An authority equally oblivious of the common principles of right and wrong was extended over the private lives and language of every family in Catholic Christendom. In England the cup was full and the day of reckoning had arrived. I have related in the first volume of my history of the period the meeting of the Parliament of 1529, and I have printed there the Petition of the Commons to the Crown, with the Bishops' reply to it.[9] I need not repeat what has been written already. A few more words are needed, however, to explain the animosity which broke out against Wolsey. The great Cardinal was the living embodiment of the detested ecclesiastical domination, and a representation in his own person of the worst abuses complained of. He had been a vigorous Minister, full of large schemes and high ambitions. He had been conscious of much that was wrong. He had checked the eagerness of the bench of Bishops to interfere with opinion, had suppressed many of the most disorderly smaller monasteries, and had founded colleges out of their revenues. But he had left his own life unreformed, as an example of avarice and pride. As Legate he had absorbed the control of the entire ecclesiastical organisation. He had trampled on the Peers. On himself he had piled benefice upon benefice. He held three great bishoprics, and, in addition to them, the wealthiest of the abbeys. York or Durham he had never entered; Winchester he may have visited in intervals of business; and he resided occasionally at the Manor of the More, which belonged to St. Albans: but this was all his personal connection with offices to which duties were attached which he would have admitted to be sacred, if, perhaps, with a smile. As Legate and Lord Chancellor he disposed of the whole patronage of the realm. Every priest or abbot who needed a license had to pay Wolsey for it. His officials were busy in every diocese. Every will that was to be proved, every marriage within the forbidden degrees, had to pass under their eyes, and from their courts streams richer than Pactolus flowed into Wolsey' s coffers. Foreign princes, as we have seen, were eager to pile pensions upon him. His wealth was known to be enormous. How enormous was now to be revealed. Even his own son—for a son he had—was charged upon the commonwealth. The worst iniquity of the times was the appointing children to the cure of souls. Wolsey's boy was educated at Paris, and held benefices worth 1,500 crowns a year, or 3,000 pounds of modern English money. A political mistake had now destroyed his credit. His enemies were encouraged to speak, and the storm burst upon him.

A list of detailed complaints against him survives which is curious alike from its contents, the time at which it was drawn in, and the person by whom it was composed—the old Lord Darcy of Templehurst, the leader afterwards in the Pilgrimage of Grace. Darcy was an earnest Catholic. He had fought in his youth under Ferdinand at the conquest of Granada. He was a dear friend of Ferdinand's daughter, and an earnest supporter, against Wolsey, of the Imperial alliance. His paper is long and the charges are thrown together without order. The date is the 1st of July, when the Legates' court had begun its sittings and was to end, as he might well suppose, in Catherine's ruin. They express the bitterness of Darcy's feelings. The briefest epitome is all that can be attempted of an indictment which extended over the whole of Wolsey's public career. It commences thus:—

"Hereafter followeth, by protestation, articles against the Cardinal of York, shewed by me, Thomas Darcy, only to discharge my oath and bounden duty to God and the King, and of no malice.

"1. All articles that touches God and his Church and his acts against the same.

"2. All that touches the King's estate, honour and prerogative, and against his laws.

"3. Lack of justice, and using himself by his authority as Chancellor faculties legatine and cardinal; what wrongs, exactions he hath used.

"4. All his authorities, legatine and other, purchased of the Pope, and offices and grants that he hath of the King's grace, special commissions and instructions sent into every shire; he, and the Cardinal's servants, to be straitly examined of his unlawful acts."

Following vaguely this distribution, Darcy proceeds with his catalogue of wrongs. Half the list is of reforms commenced and unfinished, everything disturbed and nothing set right, to "the ruffling of the good order of the realm." Of direct offences we find Wolsey unexpectedly accused of having broken the Præmunire statute by introducing faculties from Rome and allowing the Pope to levy money in the realm contrary to the King's prerogative royal, while for himself, by "colour of his powers as Cardinal legate a latere and faculties spiritual and temporal, he had assembled marvellous and mighty sums of money." Of bishops, abbots, priors, deans, &c., he had received (other sums) for promotion spiritual since his entry. He had appropriated the plate and jewels of the suppressed abbeys. He had raised the "probate duty " all over the realm, the duty going into his own coffers. He had laid importable charges on the nobles of the realm. He had Towered, Fleeted, and put to the walls of Calais a number of the noblemen of England, and many of them for light causes. He had promoted none but such as served about the King to bring to pass his purposes, or were of his council in such things as an honest man would not vouchsafe to be acquainted with. He had hanged, pressed, and banished more men since he was in authority than had suffered death by way of justice in all Christendom besides. He had wasted the King's treasure, &c. He had levied mighty sums of other houses of religion, some for dread to be pulled down, and others by his feigned visitations under colour of virtuous reformation. As Chancellor "he had taken up all the great matters depending in suit to determine after his discretion, and would suffer no way to take effect that had been devised by other men." In other times "the best prelate in the realm was contented with one bishoprick." Darcy demanded that the duties of bishops should be looked into. They should hold no temporal offices, nor meddle with temporal affairs. They should seek no dispensation from the Pope. The tenure of land in England should be looked into, to find what temporal lands were in spiritual men's hands, by what titles, for what purposes, and whether it was followed or no. The King's grace should proceed to determine all reformations, of spiritual and temporal, within his realm. Never more Legate nor Cardinal should be in England: these legacies and faculties should be clearly annulled and made frustrate, and search and enquiry be made what had been levied thereby. He recommended that at once and without notice Wolsey's papers and accounts should be seized. "Then matters much unknown would come forth surely concerning his affairs with Pope, Emperor, the French King, other Princes, and within the realm."[10]

Many of Darcy's charges are really creditable to Wolsey, many more are exaggerated; but of the oppressive character of his courts, and of the immense revenue which he drew from them, no denial was possible. The special interest of the composition, however, is that it expresses precisely the temper of the Parliament of 1529. It enables us to understand how the Chancellorship came to be accepted by Sir Thomas More. It contains the views of conservative Catholic English statesmen who, while they had no sympathy with changes o£ doctrine, were weary of ecclesiastical domination, who desired to restrict the rights of the Pope in England within the limits fixed by the laws of the Plantagenets, to relieve the clergy of their temporal powers and employments, and reduce them to their spiritual functions. Micer Mai and De Soria had said the same thing; Charles V., likely enough, shared their opinion, though he could not see his way towards acting upon it. In England it could be acted upon, and it was.

There is no occasion to repeat the well-known tale of the fall of Wolsey. He resigned the seals on the 18th of October; his property was seized and examined into. The Venetian Ambassador reported that his ordinary income was found to have been 150,000 crowns, besides pensions, gifts from foreign princes, and irregular contributions from home. His personal effects were worth half a million more. He said that it had been all gathered for the King; if the King was pleased to take it before his end, the King was welcome to it.

The King was thenceforward his own first minister; the Duke of Norfolk became President of the Council; Suffolk was Vice-President, and Sir Thomas More Lord Chancellor. But the King intended to rule with Parliament to advise and to help him. Catherine told Chapuys, in fear for herself, that the elections to the Lower House had been influenced to her own injury. She was mistaken, for the elections had not turned on the divorce. The object of the meeting of the Legislature was to reform the clergy, and upon this all parties among the laity were agreed. It may be (though the Queen could not know it) that exertions were made to counteract or control the local influences of individual nobles or prelates. If the object was to secure a real representation of popular feeling, it was right and necessary to protect the electors against the power of particular persons. But it is at least clear that this Parliament came up charged with the grievances of which Darcy's indictment was the epitome.

The Houses met on the 3rd of November, and went at once to business. I can add nothing to what I have written elsewhere on the acts of the first session. Wolsey was impeached; the Peers would have attainted him or sent him to trial for high treason; the Commons were more moderate, listening to Cromwell, who faced unpopularity by defending gallantly his old patron. But the King himself did not wish the fallen Cardinal to be pressed too hard; and it was said that, determined to protect him, he forbade the attainder. He had determined to pardon him, and an attainder would have made pardon more difficult. Very interesting accounts of Wolsey's own behaviour in his calamity are found in the letters of the foreign Ambassadors. Du Bellay saw him on the 17th of October, the day before he surrendered the Great Seal, and found him entirely broken. He wept; he "hoped the French King and Madam would have pity on him." His face had lost its fire; "he did not desire legateship, seal of office, or power; he was ready to give up everything, to his shirt, and live in a hermitage, if the King would not keep him in his displeasure." He wished Francis to write to Henry in his favour. He had been the chief instrument of the present amity with France; and such a service ought not to have given a bad impression of him. Suspicions were abroad that he had received large presents from the French Court; they were probably true, for he said "he hoped Madam would not do him an injury if it were spoken of."[11]

Nothing could be more piteous. The poor old man was like a hunted animal; lately lord of the world, and now "none so poor to do him reverence." Darcy had raised the question of the Præmunire. The ancient Statute of Provisors had forbidden the introduction of Bulls from Rome, and the statute was awake again. He was made to confess that the penalties of Præmunire—confiscation of goods and imprisonment—had been incurred by him when he published the Bull which made him Legate, and by the use of which he had unlawfully vexed the greater number of the prelates of the realm, and the King's other subjects.

His brother Legate, Campeggio, had remained for some weeks in London after the dissolution of the court. But England was no place for him in the hurly-burly which had broken loose. He went, and had to submit to the indignity of having his luggage searched at Dover. The cause alleged was a fear that he might be taking with him some of Wolsey's jewels. Tradition said that he had obtained possession of the letters of the King to Anne Boleyn, and that it was through him that they reached the Vatican. At any rate, the locks were forced, the trunks inspected, and nothing of importance was found in them.[12] Campeggio complained to the King of the violation of his privilege as ambassador. Henry told him ironically that he had suffered no wrong: his legateship was gone when the cause was revoked; he had no other commission: he was an English bishop, and so far, therefore, an English subject. But a courteous apology was made for the unnecessary violence which had been used;[13] Campeggio's ruffled plumes were smoothed, and he wrote to Salviati from Paris with the latest news of Wolsey, telling him "that the King would not go to extremes, but would act considerately in the matter, as he was accustomed to do in all his actions."[14]

Although no mention was made in Parliament of the divorce, the subject, of course, could not sleep. The question of the succession to the crown having been made so prominent, it would, and must, sooner or later, come before the Legislature to be settled, and had already become a topic of general consideration and anxiety. Mary's legitimacy had been impugned. Falieri, writing from London and reporting what he heard in society, said that "by English law females were excluded from the throne." Custom might say so, for no female had, in fact, ever sat on the throne; but enacted law or rule there was none: it was only one uncertainty the more. At any rate, Falieri said that the King had determined to go on with the divorce, that he might have a legitimate male heir.

Henry's experience of Clement had taught him that he need not fear any further immediate steps. The advocation of the cause implied of itself a desire for longer delay, and, with more patience than might have been looked for in such a disappointment, he had resolved to wait for what the Pope would do. That an English sovereign should plead before the Rota at Rome was, of course, preposterous. The suggestion of it was an insult. But other means might be found. He had himself proposed Cambray as a neutral spot for a first commission; he really believed that the Pope was at heart on his side, and therefore did not wish to quarrel with him. When Campeggio was leaving England the King wrote to Clement more politely than might have been expected. He did not insist that the English commission should be renewed.

"We could have wished," he said, "not less for your sake than our own, that all things had been so expedited as corresponded to our expectation, not rashly conceived, but according to your promises. As it is, we have to regard with grief and wonder the incredible confusion which has arisen. If a Pope can relax Divine laws at his pleasure, surely he has as much power over human laws. We have been so often deceived by your Holiness 's promises that no dependence can be placed on them. Our dignity has not been consulted in the treatment which we have met with. If your Holiness will keep the cause now advoked to Rome in your own hands, until it can be decided by impartial judges, and in an indifferent place, in a manner satisfactory to our scruples, we will forget what is past, and repay kindness by kindness."[15]

As the Pope had professed to be ignorant of the extent of his dispensing power, the King proposed to submit this part of the question to the canon lawyers of Europe. The Nuncios, meanwhile, in Paris and London advised that the Pope and the Emperor should write in a friendly way to the King. Charles was believed in England to have said "that the King should stick to his wife in spite of his beard." He had not used such words, and ought to disclaim them, but he might endeavour to persuade the King to let the divorce drop.

The Parliament meanwhile had been fiercely busy in cutting down the Church courts—abolishing or limiting the various forms of extortion by which the laity had been plundered. The clergy were required to reside upon their benefices. "Pluralities" were restricted. The business of the session had been a series of Clergy Discipline Acts. The Bishop of Rochester especially clamoured over the "want of faith" which such Acts exhibited, but nothing had been done of which the Pope could complain, nothing of which, perhaps, he did not secretly approve. Catherine, through her agents at Rome, demanded instant sentence in her cause. The Pope's inclination seemed again on Henry's side. He described an interview with the Emperor, who had urged Catherine's case. He professed to have replied that he must be cautious when the case was not clear. Many things, he said, made for the King. All the divines were against the power of the Pope to dispense. Of the canon lawyers, some were against it; and those who were not against it considered that the dispensing powers could only be used for a very urgent cause, as, to prevent the ruin of a kingdom. The Pope's function was to judge whether such a cause had arisen; but no such inquiry was made when the dispensation of Julius was granted. The Emperor must not be surprised if he could do no more for the Queen.[16]

The Emperor himself thought of nothing less than taking his uncle "by the beard." He wished to be reconciled to him if he could find a way to it. For one thing, he was in sore need of help against the Turks, and Chapuys was directed to ascertain if Henry would give him money. Henry's reply was not encouraging, and sounded ominously, as if his mind was making perilous progress on the great questions of the day. He said it would be a foolish thing for him to remit money to the Emperor and help him to maintain three armies in Italy, which ought to be elsewhere. He had consulted his Parliament, and had found he could not grant it. The said money might be turned to other use, and be employed to promote dissension among Christian princes.[17] At a subsequent interview the conversation was renewed and took a more general turn. The King spoke of the Court of Rome—the ambitious magnificence of which, he said, "had been the cause of so many wars, discords, and heresies." Had the Pope and Cardinals, he said, observed the precepts of the Gospel and attended to the example of the Fathers of the Church [several of whom the King mentioned, to Chapuys' surprise], they would have led a different life, and not have scandalised Christendom by their acts and manners. So far, Luther had told nothing but the truth; and had Luther limited himself to inveighing against the vices, abuses, and errors of the clergy, instead of attacking the Sacraments of the Church, everyone would have gone with him; he would himself have written in his favour, and taken pen in hand in his defence. Into the Church in his own dominions he hoped, little by little, to introduce reforms and end the scandal.[18]

These expressions were dangerous enough, but there was worse to follow. "Henry maintained that the only power which Churchmen had over laymen was absolution from sin"; Chapuys found that he had told the Queen that he was now waiting for the opinions of the foreign doctors; when he had obtained these he would forward them to Rome; and should not the Pope, in conformity with the opinions so expressed, declare the marriage null and void, he would denounce the Pope as a heretic and marry whom he pleased.[19]

"The Lady Anne," Chapuys said, "was growing impatient, complaining that she was wasting her time and youth to no purpose." The House of Commons had already "clipped the claws" of the clergy, and it was not impossible that, on the plea of the various and contradictory judgments on the matter, they and the people might consent to the divorce.

The hope that the King might be held back by national disapproval was thus seen to be waning. The national pride had been touched by the citation of an English sovereign to plead before a foreign court. Charles V. feared that the Pope, alarmed at the prospect of losing England, would "commit some new folly " which might lead to war.[20] The English Nuncio in fact informed Chapuys, much to the latter's astonishment, that the Pope had ordered him to find means to reconcile the King and the Emperor. Chapuys thought the story most unlikely. The Emperor would never have trusted the Pope with such a commission, nor was the Pope a promising mediator, seeing that he was more hated in England than might have been supposed.

There were evident signs now that the country meant to support the King. The Duke of Norfolk told the Ambassador that unless the Emperor would permit his master to divorce the Queen and take another wife, there was no remedy left. The King's scruples of conscience, instead of abating, were on the increase, owing to the opinions of others who thought as he did, and no one in the world could turn him.[21] Chapuys thought it more likely than not that the question would be introduced at once into Parliament, where he had heard that a majority had been bribed or gained over to the King's side. With the consent of the Commons he would consider himself secure all round. Should the Pope pronounce in favour of the Queen, the English would say that the sentence was unjust, for, besides the suspicion and ill-will they had towards the Pope and other ecclesiastical judges, they would allege that in confirming the Bull of Pope Julius, the Pope and Cardinals would be only influenced by their own interest "to increase the authority of the Pope, and procure him money by such dispensations."[22]

At this moment Chapuys feared some precipitate step on Henry's part. Norfolk, whom he saw frequently, told him that "there was nothing which the King would not grant the Emperor to obtain his consent, even to becoming his slave for ever."[23] "The reform of the clergy was partly owing to the anger of the people at the advocation of the cause to Rome." "Nearly all the people hated the priests," Chapuys said—an important testimony from an unwilling witness. Peers and Commons might be brought to agree that Popes could grant no dispensations in marriages or anything else, and so save their money. If there was nothing to restrain them but respect for the Pope, they would not care much for him, and the Holy See would have no more obedience in England than in Germany. The Duke of Norfolk talked as menacingly as the rest. He said publicly to the Ambassador "that the Pope himself had been the first to perceive the invalidity of the marriage, had written to say that it could not stand, and would so declare himself, or have it legally declared … and now, being in the Emperor's power, the same Pope would have the case tried and determined only as the Emperor wished."[24]

Under these circumstances Chapuys could only advise that means should be taken to weaken or defer the action of Parliament. The Cambray proposal might be revived, or a suggestion made that the cause should be argued before the Sorbonne at Paris. The Duke of Norfolk could perhaps be gained over; but, unfortunately, he and Queen Catherine were not on good terms. The Duke was afraid also—the words show how complicated were the threads which ruled the situation—that, should the King dismiss the Lady Anne, the Cardinal would in all probability regain his influence, owing to his uncommon ability and the King's readiness to restore him to favour. Everyone perceived the King bore the Cardinal no real ill-will, and should the King's affection for the lady abate in the least, the Cardinal would soon find means of settling the divorce in a manner which would cost the opposite party their lives.[25] In this letter of Chapuys is the first allusion which I have found to the Mary Boleyn scandal, then beginning to be heard of in circles opposed to the divorce: "People say," he wrote, "that it is the King's evil destiny that impels him; for had he, as he asserts, only attended to the voice of conscience, there would have been still greater affinity to contend with in this intended marriage than in that of the Queen his wife."[26] The story is referred to as a fresh feature of the case, which had not before been heard of.

  1. Paget to Petre.—State Papers, Henry VIII., vol. x. p. 406.
  2. Chapuys to the Regent Margaret, Sept. 18, 1529.—Spanish Calendar, vol. iv. part 1, p. 214.
  3. Chapuys to Charles V., Sapt. 2.—Spanish Calendar, vol. v. part 2, p. 225.
  4. Ibid. p. 229.
  5. Chapuys to Charles V., Sept. 2, 1529.—Spanish Calendar, vol. vi, part 1, pp. 236–7.
  6. Ibid. p. 236.
  7. Ibid. p. 274.
  8. Chapuys to Charles V., Sept. 2, 1529.—Spanish Calendar, vol. vi. part 1, p. 294.
  9. The transcripts of these documents were furnished to me by the late Sir Francis Palgrave, who was then Keeper of the Records.
  10. Cardinal Wolsey and Lord Darcy, July 1, 1529.—Calendar, Foreign and Domestic, vol. iv. pp. 2548–62.
  11. Du Bellay to Montmorency, Oct. 17, 1529.—Calendar, Foreign and Domestic, vol. iv. pt. 3, p. 2675.
  12. Chapuys to the Emperor, Oct. 25, 1529.—Spanish Calendar, vol. iv. pt. 1, p. 304.
  13. Hen. VIII. to Campeggio, Oct. 22, 1529.—Calendar, Foreign and Domestic, vol. iv. p. 2677.
  14. To Salviati, Nov. 5.—Ibid. p. 2702.
  15. Hen. VIII. to Clement VII.—Calendar, Foreign and Domestic, vol. iv. p. 2660.
  16. Casalis to Henry VIII., Dec. 26, 1529.—Calendar, Foreign and Domestic, vol. iv. p. 2722.
  17. Chapuys to Charles V., Dec. 6, 1529.—Spanish Calendar, vol. iv. part 1, p. 344.
  18. Ibid.
  19. Chapuys to Charles V., Dec. 6, 1529.—Spanish Calendar, vol. iv. part 1, p. 351.
  20. Charles V. to Ferdinand, Jan. 11, 1530.—Calendar, Foreign and Domestic, vol. iv. p. 2742.
  21. Chapuys to Charles V., Dec. 9, 1529.—Spanish Calendar, vol. iv. part 1, p. 359.
  22. Ibid. p. 361.
  23. Ibid. p. 366.
  24. Chapuys to Charles V., Dec. 9, 1529.—Spanish Calendar, vol. iv. part 1, p. 367.
  25. Ibid. p. 368.
  26. Chapuys to Charles V., Dec. 9, 1529.—Spanish Calendar, vol. iv. part 1, p. 369.