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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 357



Meanwhile Katherine, who had witnessed with a jealous eye her husband'a partiality for Anne Boleye, at last discovered his real intentions towards herself. In a fit of passion, she reproached him to his face with the baseness of his conduct, declaring- that, as she had come a virgin to his bed, she would never admit that she had been living ever since in incest; and moreover, she would have, what injustice could not be denied her, the aid of foreign as well as English counsel to defend her right. Henry replied, that his only object in instituting an inquiry as to the validity of their marriage, was to satisfy the scruples of his own conscience, and secure their daughter from the brand of illegitimacy ; and thus, by hypocritical dissimulation, he, after a "short tragedie," appeased the Queen. It must be remarked, however, that at this period the interior of the Court of England presented a perpetual system of disguises and deceptions ; and Katharine, whilst affecting to be the dupe of her husband's hypocritical professions, was secretly exerting her utmost energies to thwart his purpose. Although all her proceedings were narrowly watched, she contrived to send information to her nephew in Spain, and also to the archduchess in Flanders ; and, to disarm the suspicion of the King and his advisers, she treated Anne Boleyn with unusual complacency ; and Anne, with equal hypocrisy, testified profound respect for her mistress. During this period of mistrust, the citizens, displeased by_ the interruption of their commerce with Flanders, and alarmed with threats of hostility from Austria, openly exclaimed against the divorce ; and the women, to their honour, were notoriously the warm and disinterested advocates of Katherine's cause. Without entering into theological quibbles, or political speculation, they condemned, as cruel, a measure which, however disguised by sophistry and hypocrisy, was in reality only brought forward to gratify one party at the expense of the other ; and for a time, such was the enthusiasm inspired by their influence, that the people protested who ever married the Princess Mary, should be their lawful sovereign. Meanwhile, Henry's ill-hureour exploded in fury against Wolscy, who was intimidated into writing to the Pope, urging him to instantly dispatch a legate, to inquire into the legality of the marriage. Put before tho legate, Cardinal Campeggio, arrived, that pestilence, the sweatingsickness, became epidemic ; and such was the panic created by this awful malady, that alike the physician, the confessor, and the lawyer, were in constant requisition. Henry, who saw the contagion spread amongst his own household, became seriously alarmed. Ilo sent Anne Boleyn home to her parents, returned to the company of the Queen, with whom he fastedand daily prayed; and whilst in this devout, penitent mood, made no less than thirty wills. When the pestilence subsided, the King's mistress again returned to court ; but when the legate from Rome was expected, a sense of decency induced the King to send her away again, and live with the Queen on the same terms as if there had been no controversy between them. On the seventh of October, 1528. Campeggio arrived in London ; and Katharine, to utterly discountenance the idea entertained at liome, that she would consent to retire to a convent, adopted a gayer style of dress, encouraged music and dancing, and joined with alacrity in those pleasures she had formerly censured or rejected. As Campeggio had been privately enjoined by the Pope, to delay giving sentence ol divorce till he received fresh orders, he, on his arrival in England, began his legation by advising the King to quiet the pretended compunctions of conscience, and live in harmony with his consort. But this advice proving ineffectual, he urged the Queen to agree to the separation. Katherine, however, being as resolute in the right as her lord was m the wrong, peremptorily rejected his counsel, alleging that she was the King's lawful wife, and would remain such till declared otherwise by the Pope's sentence ; besides, said she, " I have in Spain two bulles, the one being of later dayte than the other, but both of such


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