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I haste now to my setting: I shall fall
Like a bright exhalation in the evening,
And no man see me more.
THE VICISSITUDES OF LIFE.
So farewell to the little good you bear me,
Farewell, a long farewell,
to all my greatness!
This is the state of man; To-day he puts forth
The tender leaves of hope, to-morrow blossoms,
And bears his blushing honours thick upon him:
T'he third day, comes a frost, a killing frost;
And,—when he thinks, good easy man, full surely
His greatness is a ripening,-nips his root,
And then he falls, as I do. I have ventur'd,
Like little wanton boys that swim on bladders
This many summers in a sea of glory;
But far beyond my depth: my high-blown pride
At length broke under me; and now hast lest me,
Weary, and old with service, to the mercy
Of a rude stream, that must forever hide me.
Vain pomp, and glory of this world, I hate ye:
I feel my heart new open'd; 0, how wretched
Is that poor man, that hangs on princes' favours!
There is, betwixt that smile we would aspire to,
That sweet aspect of princes, and their ruin,
More pangs and fears than wars or women have;
And when he falls, he falls like Lucifer,
Nerer to hope again.
CARDINAL WOLSEY'S SPEECH TO CROMWELL Cromwell, I did not think to shed a tear In all my miseries; But thou hast forc'd me Out of thy honest truth to play the woman. Let's dry our eyes: and thus far hear me, Cromwell; And,--when I am forgotten, as I shall be; And sleep in dull cold marble, where no mention Of me more must be heard of,--say, I taught thee, Say, Wolsey,—that once trod the ways of glory, And sounded all the depths and shoals of honour,Found thee a way, out of his wreck, to rise in; A sure and safe one, though thy master miss'd it. Mark but my fall, and that that ruin'd me. Cromwell, I charge thee fling away ambition;
By that sin fell the angels, how can man then,
The image of his Maker hope to win by't?
Love thyself last: cherish those hearts that hate thee,
Corruption wins not more than honesty.
Still in thy right hand carry gentle peace,
To silence envious tongues. Be just, and fear not:
Let all the ends thou aim’st at, be thy country's,
Thy God's and truth’s; then if thou fall’st, O Crom-
Thou fall'st a blessed martyr. Serve the king; (well,
And,-Pr’ythee, lead me in:
There take an inventory of all I have,
To the last penny: 'tis the king's: my robe,
And my integrity to heaven, is all
I dare now call mine own. O Cromwell, Cromwell,
Had I but serv'd my God with half the zeal
I serv'd my king, he would not in mine age
Have left me naked to mine enemies.
Such a noise arose
As the shrouds make at sea in a stiff tempest,
As loud, and to as many tunes: hats, cloaks,
(Doublets, I think,) flew up; and had their faces
Been loose, this day they had been lost. Such joy
I never saw before. Great-bellied women,
That had not half a week to go, like rams
In the old time of war, would shake the press,
And make them reel before them. No man living
Could say, This is my wife, there; all were woven
So strangely in one piece.
CARDINAL WOLSEY'S DEATH.
At last, with easy roads,* he came to Leicester,
Lodg’d in the abbey; where the reverend abbot,
With all his convent, honourably receiv'd him;
To whom he gave these words,-0, farier abbot,
An old nan, broken with the storms of tate,
Is come to lay his weary bones among ye;
Give him a little earth for charity!
By short stages
So went to bed. where eagerly his sickness
Pursu'd him still; and, three nights after this,
About the hour of eight, (which he himself
Foretold, should be his last,) full of repentance,
Continual meditations, tears, and sorrows,
He gave his honours to the world again,',
His blessed part to heaven, and slept in peace.
WOLSEY'S VICES AND VIRTUES.
So may he rest: his faults lay gently on him!
Yet thus far, Griffith, give me leave to speak him,
And yet with charity,--He was a man
Of an unbounded stomach,* ever ranking
Himself with princes; one, that by suggestion
Try'd all the kingdom: simony was fair play;
His own opinion was his law: l' the presencet
He would say untruths; and he ever double,
Both in his words and meaning: He was never,
But where he meant to ruin, pitiful:
His promises were, as he then was, mighty;
But his performance, as he is now, nothing.
Of his own body he was ill, and gave.
The clergy ill example.
Noble madam, Men’s evil manners live in brass; their virtues We write in water,
This cardinal, Though from an humble stock, undoubtedly Was fashion'd tot much honour. From his cradle, He was a scholar, and a ripe, and good one; Exceeding wise, fair spoken and persuading; Lofty, and sour, to them that lov'd him not; But, to those men that sought him, sweet as summer. And though he were unsatisfied in getting, (Which was á sin,) yet in bestowing, madam, He was most princely: Ever witness for him. Those twins of learning, that he rais'd in you, Jpswich, and Oxford! one of which fell with him, Unwilling to outlive the good that did it;
• Price. + Of the king. Formed for. $ Ipswich.
The other, though unfinish’d, yet so famous,
So excellent in art, and still so rising,
That Christendom shall ever speak his virtue.
His overthrow heap'd happiness upon him;
For then, and not till then, he felt himself,
And found the blessedness of being little;
And, to add greater honours to his age
Than man could give him, he died, fearing God.
Men, that make
Envy, and crooked malice, nourishment,
Dare bite the best.
Love, and meekness, lord,
Become a churchman, better than ambition;
Win straying souls with modesty again,
Cast none away.
Tis a cruelty,
To load a falling man.
ARCHBISHOP CRANMER'S PROPHECY.
Let me speak, sir,
For heaven now bids me; and the words I utter
Let none think flattery, for they'll find them truth.'
This royal infant, (heaven still move about her!)
Though in her cradle, yet now promises
Upon this land a thousand thousand blessings,
Which time shall bring to ripeness: She shall be
(But few now living can behold that goodness,)
À pattern to all princes living with her,
And all that shall succeed: Sheba was never
More covetous of wisdom, and fair virtue,
Than this pure soul shall be: all princely graces,
up such a mighty piece as this is, With all the virtues that attend the good, Shall still be doubled on her: truth shall nurse her, Holy and heavenly thoughts still counsel her:
She shall be lov'd, and fear'd; Her own shall bless
her: Her foes shake like a field of beaten corn, And hang their heads with sorrow:
with her: In her days, every man shall eat in safety Under his own vine, what he plants; and sing The merry songs of peace to all his. neighbours: God shall be truly known; and those about her From her shall read the perfect ways of honour, And by those claim their greatness, not by blood. Nor shall this peace sleep with her: But as when The bird of wonder dies, the maiden phenix, Her ashes new create another heir As great in admiration as herself; So shall she leave her blessedness to one, (When heaven shall call her from this cloud of dark
ness,) Who, from the sacred ashes of her honour, Shall star-like rise, as great in fame as she was, And so stand fix'd: Peace, plenty, love, truth, terror, That were the servants to this chosen infant, Shall then be his, and like a vine grow to him; Wherever the bright sun of heaven shall shine, His honour, and the greatness of his name Shall be, and make new nations: He shall flourish, And, like a mountain cedar, reach his branches To all the plains about him: -Our children's
children Shall see this, and bless heaven.