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FRANCIS LANCELOTT, ESQ. Queens of England. Vol.1.

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FRANCIS LANCELOTT, ESQ.
Queens of England. Vol.1.
page 319



ELIZABETH "WO OD VILLE, shouts of the insulting spectators, to ! Leicester, where, after being exposed for two days, it was interred m the Grey Friars' church of that place. Kichard's crown being found by one of the soldiers in the field of battle, was immediately placed by Stanley upon the head of the conqueror, who was instantly greeted with loud and prolonged shouts of " Long live King Henry !" Thus ended the bloody reign of Richard the Third, the race of the Plantagenet kings, and also the contests between the Houses of York and Lancaster, which had for thirty years been a pestilence to the kingdom, and in which about one hundred thousand men lost their lives, cither on the scaffold, by the hand of the assassin, or on the field of battle. These dissensions had reduced the kingdom to a state of almost savage barbarity ; laws, arts, and commerce, were entirely neglected, for the practice of arms. The people had no idea of pacific government, and except only in their gallantry to the fair sex, they little differed, from the ancient painted inhabitants of the island. The clergy were entirely distinct from the laity, both in customs, constitutions, and learning. They were governed by the civil law, understood and wrote Latin tolerably well, and as a hody, but little interested themselves in the civil polity ; whereas, the laity regarded the clergy with blind veneration, were governed by the common law, which was traditionally delivered to them from their ancestors, understood no Latin, and the few who aspired to politeness, applied themselves wholly to French. William Oaxton, him who, in 1473, set up the first printing - press ever worked in England, thus feelingly laments the decline of chivalry, one of the most remarkable peculiarities in the manners of the middle ages, and which, greatly as it had flourished in England in the fourteenth century, had by the sanguine wars of the Roses been well nigh banished from the land : " Oh, ye Knyghtes of England, where is the custome and usage of noble chyvalry, that was used in tho days ? What do ye now but go to the baynes and play atdysc? And some,not well advysed, use not honest and good rule again all ordre of knygthode. Leve this, leve it, and rede the noble volumes of St. Graal of Lancelot^ and many mo ; thcr shall ye see manhode, cui'toyse, and gentylness. X wold it plcasyd our soverayne lord, that twyse or thryse a-ycre, or, at least, once, he wold do cry justis of pies to thende that every knyght shold have hors and harneys, and also the use and craft of a knyghte, and also to tomoye one agaynste one, or two agaynste two, and the best to have aprys, a diamond or jewel, such as shold please the prynce." CHAPTER IV, Elizabeth restored to freedom and affluence—Henry the Seventh marries her daughter, the Princess royal—She retires from court—Stands godmother to Prince Arthur—-Receives the French ambassador—Is about to be married to the King of Scots, when that King dies—Enters the convent of Bcrmondsey—Her death—Will—Burial— Children. -^fl^? , JJE victory of IJos ]fïS&$ÉÈtë&f& worth, whilst it terminated the wars of the Roses, and elevatcdRlchmoudjWho took the name of Henry the Seventh, to the throne, re leased Elizabeth from the grasp of her hunchback persecutor, and restored her to freedom and affluence. The act which deprived her of her dower and title as Queen Dowager, was repealed, and burnt by the hands of the common hangman ; and although Henry the Seventh entertained little or no personal regard towards her, policy commanded him to treat her with all outward respect, and to restore to her several of her dower places,


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