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have been given to the characters of the Scotch and English monarchs ; but still the wary, politic, and far-sighted Henry is not a little in contrast with the chivalrous and romantic James ; and the incidents which distinguish the courts of the two monarchs are in fair keeping with the complexion of those who sway them. In the one we have solemn councils of state ; detected conspiracies and defections; secret embassies, wisely conceived and dexterously managed ; preparations for war vigorously adopted and steadily pursued : in the other are exhibited snatches of court-delights and bridal gayeties; a princely sympathy with unfortunate greatness; that brilliant personal courage which to many minds forms an excuse for every other defect, and which was here wanted, not only to cover weak and vacillating councils, and enterprises hastily assumed and as hastily dropped, but to atone for errors which do not lie so immediately upon the surface. Mr. Gifford has characterized the Henry of our author as cold, calculating, stern, shrewd, and avaricious. These are harsh epithets, for which some qualification might surely have been found in the burst of feeling and emotion which breaks from him when the name of Stanley is found in the band of conspirators against his ‘royal power and person,-in his princely munificence to the wife of his vanquished rival,-in his sympathy with the fallen fortunes of Dalyell,-in the indignation which breaks from him at the bare supposition that his interests have been served at the expense of religious propriety,—and even in the liberal treatment which Warbeck and his followers receive when the chances of war first throw them into his hands. That these redeeming traits in Henry's character should have escaped Mr. Gifford's acute observation is not less remarkable than that he should overlook the flaw in James's generosity, of which the outward credit is allowed to rest with himself, but of which the real cost is paid by one of the noblest and most loyal of his subjects,--the poor broken-hearted Earl of Huntley.
But it is not on the characters of either James or Henry that the reader's attention will soon learn to rest. Huntley, Dalyell, the Lady Katherine Gordon, and Jane Douglas are four such creations as we might almost imagine the modern magician of the north to have shadowed forth, but which, under his hands, would have expanded into a breadth and
depth of effect which it is no derogation to say that the genius of Ford, powerful and mighty as it is, was incapable of giving. The very first speech of Huntley-his fluctuation between a sense of real and artificial greatness, and the honest heart which finally throws the casting weight into the right scale-wins for him a regard which his strong parental feelings, his blunt, bluff language, and that strong sense of right, which, even in scenes most trying to a father's heart, is sure to gain a final victory over his feelings and prejudices, maintain undiminished, or rather continue to increase, till the very close of the drama. The personal charms of his daughter, the Lady Katherine Gordon, have been consecrated even in the page of history; "the name of the White Rose,” as Bacon prettily observes, “which had been given to her husband's false title, having been continued to her true beauty." But outward beauty was the least recommendation of Huntley's daughter. With such filial feelings as the Lady Katherine possessed, the honeyed accents of Warbeck's tongue and the princely fascinations of his language may be supposed to have gained a readier conquest than strict consistency admitted ; but if she sinks at all in her character as a daughter, it is only to rise in her character as a wife. A more perfect specimen of conjugal tenderness and constancy than the Lady Katherine exhibits will not easily be found; and that Ford should have disfigured this fine picture by a debasing trait for which there was no occasion, and which he must have known to be at variance with historical facts,' is one of those pieces of gratuitous folly for which the mind is at a loss to account. His judgment did not thus betray him in delineating her wedded lord. The character of Warbeck is maintained with admirable consistency throughout. He utters on all occasions the language of a prince and a Plantagenet. “No colloquies, no side-speeches," as Mr. Gifford justly observes, “are allowed to compromise his public assertions.” When the Scottish king grows “frosty and wayward," when the treacherous Frion's tongue is leaning to the weak part of his story,-in the utmost wreck of his fortunes and his hopes,
--in imprisonment, and at the axe's edge-his identity with the Duke of York is never suffered to betray itself in a single thought or expression.
1 Seo notes I p. 307, 322.
Ith. With a friendship
Org. I am unfitting
Ith. We'll distinguish
Org. The bed?
ment To show this was the king, and this the subject
[Soft sad music. List, what sad sounds are these ? extremely sad
Ith. Sure from Penthea's lodgings.
A SONG within.
Sighs are spent; the burning tapers
Pure as are unwritten papers,
Lock'd in endless dreams,
Th’ extremes of all extremes,
Love's martyrs must be ever, ever dying.
Org. A horrid stillness Succeeds this deathful air ; let's know the reason: Tread softly; there is mystery in mourning.
THE RIGHT HONOURABLE
EARL OF NEWCASTLE, VISCOUNT MANSFIELD, LORD
BOLSOVER AND OGLE.
My LORD, Out of the darkness of a former age (enlightened by a late both learned and an honourable pen),? I have endeavoured to personate a great attempt, and, in it, a greater danger. In other labours you may read actions of antiquity discoursed ; in this abridgment find the actors themselves
1 "William Cavendish (nephew to the first Earl of Devonshire), Jord Ogle,” Collins says, "jure materno, was born in the year 1992, and was early in favour with James I., by whom he was made a knight of the Bath in 1610, and created a peer, by the title of Viscount Mansfiel 1, in 1623. He continued in favour with Charles I., who created him Earl of Newcastle-upon-Tyne in 1628, and Marquis six years afterward. In 1638, the king assigned him the office of governor to the Prince of Wales." For more than half a century the house of this distinguished noblernan was open to every man of genius and learning. He was more particularly the friend and munificent patron of Ben Jonson, whos e connexion with the family appears to have been of long and close continuance, and whose assistance was called for by them on all occasions of mirth or melancholy, whether in the supply of monumental inscriptions, or in furnishing interludes for those splendid entertainments wrdich his patron was accustomed to give, and which appear to have been the astonishment of the times. “God be thanked," says the Earl of Clarendon, emphatically, when mentioning that which the earl gave tu Charles I. on his journey into Scotland; “God be thanked, that though this stupendous entertainment might too much whet the appetite or others to excess, no man ever after in those days imitated it.” For an 8.ccount of the public services of the Earl of Newcastle, for proofs of his devotion and unshaken fidelity to his royal and unfortunate master, th's reader is referred to the pages of the saine excellent historian. A long and elaborate character of the earl will be found in the second volume, from which we extract such passages as serve to show his attachment to literature and the fine arts.
“He was a very fine gentleman, active, and full of coura ge, and most
2 Learned and honourable pen.) That of the great Lordi Bacon. Ho. alludes to his “ History of King Henry VII."-GIFTORD.
discoursing; in some kind practised as well what to speak as speaking why to do. Your lordship is a most competent judge in expressions of such credit, commissioned by your known ability in examining, and enabled by your knowledge in determining, the monuments of Time. Eminent titles may, indeed, inform who their owners are, not often what. To yours, the addition of that information in both cannot in any application be observed flattery, the authority being established by truth. I can only acknowledge the errors in writing mine own; the worthiness of the subject written being a perfection in the story and of it. The custom of your lordship's entertainments (even to strangers) is rather an example than a fashion; in which consideration I dare not profess a curiosity : but am only studious that your. lordship will please, among such as best honour your goodness, to admit into your noble construction,
accomplished in those qualities of horsemanship, dancing, and fencing which accompany a good breeding, in which his delight was. Besides that, he was amorous in poetry and music, to which he indulged the greatest part of his time; and nothing could have tempted him out of those paths of pleasure, which he enjoyed in a full and ample fortune, but honour, ambition to serve the king when he saw him in distress, and abandoned by most of those who were in the nighest degree obliged to him and by him."
“In all actions of the field he was still present, and never absent in any battle ; iu all which he gave instances of an invincible con rage and fearlessness in danger, in which the exposing himself notoriously did sometimes change the fortune of the day when his troops began to give ground. Such articles of action were no sooner over than he retired to his delightful company, music, or his softer pleasures; to all which he was so indulgent, and to his ease, that he would not be interrupted upon what occasion soever, insomuch as he sometimes denied admission to the chiefest officers of the army, even to General King himself, for two days together, from whence many inconveniences fell out."— History of the Rebellion, vol. ii. b. 8.
i The monuments of Time, i. e. such as are destined to live to future ages; a compliment somewhat too high even for this great and good man, whose judgment in matters of mere literature never possessed that commanding influence which the grateful poet seems inclined to endow bim with.-GIFFORD.