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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 381



that you yourself desired it, I would do no other than complain of my ill fortune, and, by degrees, abate my great folly. And so, for want of time,"l make an end of my rude letter, desiring you to give credit to tbe bearer of it in' all that he will tell you from me. " Written by the hand of your entire servant, "II. K." The next letter shows that the replies Df Anne to the royal wooer were then far from satisfactory. "By turning over in my thoughts the contents of your last letters, I have put myself into a great agony, not knowing to understand tbom whether to my disadvantage, as I understood some others, or not. I beseech you now, with the greatest earnestness, to let me know your whole intention as to the love between us two ; for I must of necessity obtain this answer of you, having been above a whole year struck with the dart of love, and not yet sure whether I shall fail or find a place in your heart and affection. This uncertainty has hindered me of late from naming you my mistress, since you only love me with an ordinary affection ; but if you please to do the duty of a true and loyal mistress, and to give up yourself, body and heart, to me, who will be, as I have been, your most loyal servant (if your rigour does not forbid me), I promise that, not only the name shall be given you, but also that I will take you for my mistress, casting off all others that are in competition with you out of my thoughts and affection, and serving you orìy. I beg you to give an entire answer to this my rude letter, that I may know on what and how far I may depend. But if it does not please you to answer me in writing, let me know some place where I may have it by word of mouth, and I will go thither with all my heart. NO more, for fear of tiring you. " Written by the hand of him who would willingly remain yours, "II. REX." That Anne sent a favourable answer to the above epistle, is rendered pro bable by the next letter, which we shall quote. " For a present so valuable, that nothing could be more (considering the whole of it), I return you my most hearty thanks, not only on account of the costly diamond, and the ship in which the solitary damsel is tossed about, but chiefly for the fine interpretation and too humble submission wdiich your goodness hath made to me. For I think it would he very difficult for me to find an occasion to deserve it, if it was not assisted by your great humanity and favour which I have sought, do seek, and will always seek, to preserve by alL the services in my power ; and this is my firm intention and hope, according to the motto, mit illic out nullibi (either here or nowhere). The demonstrations of your affections are such, the fine thoughts of your letters so cordially expressed, that they oblige me for ever to honour, love, and serve you sincerely, beseeching you to continue in the same firm and constant purpose ; and assuring you that, on my part, I will not only make you a suitable return, but outdo you in loyalty of heart, if it be possible. I desire you also, if at any time before this I have in any sort offended you, you would give me the same absolution that you ask, assuring you that hereafter my heart shall he dedicated to you alone. I wish my body was so too. God can do it, if he pleases, to whom I pray once aday for that end, hoping that at length my prayers will be heard. I wish the time may be short, but I shall think it long till we sec one another. " Writ ten by the hand of the secretary, who, in heart, .body, and will, is " Your loyal " And most assured servant, "H. K." It is evident that neither the royal writer nor the fair receiver of these flattering love letters possessed even an ordinary sense of moral rectitude or religious duty. True it is that one of Anne's encomiasts says that her father, to whom Henry bad disclosed his intentions, urged her to freely accept the proffered hand


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