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state of general and burning hostility to any thing of the kind.
But in glancing over all that we have witnessed, and before entering upon a new era, with regard to the Bible itself, who can forbear looking back, for a moment, to the dining-hall in the mansion-house of Little Sodbury, in Gloucestershire ? To the eager conversation or discussions there held, below a roof still standing? And to the deep-seated feeling of one man at the table, when the mitred Abbots of Winchcombe and Tewksbury were near at hand? And the Chancellor of Worcester “ reviled him, as though he had been a dog ?" And the hierarchy reigned triumphant, and Wolsey was in all his glory? And not one such printed page of inspiration was to be found in all England over? The unbending resolution, however, had been formed, and the memorable words in which, on one occasion, it was expressed, will bear to be repeated at such a time as this—“ If God spare my life, ere many years, I will cause a boy that drives the plough to know more of the Scriptures than you do."
Thus, before ever this Sacred Volume entire came to be printed upon English ground, Tyndale’s energetic efforts had been signally crowned with success. His “ labour in the Lord” had not been in vain. That labour, indeed, once involved nothing more than the solitary purpose of a single Christian ; and viewed only in its bud, or budding, it has had little else than a bitter taste; but whether the flower has been sweet, millions can testify.
It becomes, therefore, not unworthy of remark, that without straining, this cause actually admits of a survey on the widest scale. The three great monarchs of the day, were Henry VIII., Francis I., and Charles V.; never forgetting the Pontiff at Rome; but certainly they have not played their several parts, beyond the verge of God's providence, in his determined purpose towards this favoured Island. The licentious and indomitable monarch, for whom Tyndale prayed with his dying breath, though still wilfully blind, has been overruled. His Vicegerent or Vicar-General, guided only by expediency, and clothed with more power than Wolsey ever possessed, must lend all bis constitutional energy, and go along with the stream of the Divine purpose. Cranmer, however timid and cautious, though too long silent, must
speak out at last. On the other hand, we have Cuthbert Tunstal, after denouncing the translation at Paul's cross, and tormenting all who possessed it, as far as he could reach them, who being constitutionally silent, must be silent now. As for Stokesly, the Bishop of London, the lion was bearded in his own den; for they have finished one Bible, and are preparing to print many more in London itself, nay, in London alone. And last, though not least, we have Stephen Gardiner, perhaps the ablest politician of the age, completely outwitted, but now come home, and just in time to see the final triumph; though, as Foxe says, he “ mightily did stomach and malign the printing of this Bible.” But then Scotland, as well as England, had been invaded, and from the beginning; nor was the triumph confined to the shores of Britain. Even Charles V., by the way, had met with his greatest personal humiliation; and as for the King of France, that inveterate enemy, and ally of Rome, he has been overruled in his own capital, and the Inquisition itself is thwarted; for now, when the Bible is about to be printed in the English metropolis, we have printing presses from Paris, beside types in store from the same city, nay, and Frenchmen, who “ became printers in London, which before,” says John Foxe truly, “they never intended.”
In England, indeed, they may tamper injuriously, to a limited degree, with the first translation imported; and there are battles still, which remain to be fought upon English ground; though after Henry VIII. has left the stage, the version will be reprinted again and again, many times, and precisely as Tyndale gave it to his country.
But at present, that is to say, in 1538, if the Emperor Charles, and the French King, and the Pontiff himself, with Cardinal Pole in his train, were all grouped together at Nice, intending, among other business, to alarm or overreach the King of England; then it was fit, that all the while, certain men from London should be busy in printing the English Bible in the capital of France; and after bringing over the materials and Parisian workmen to England, proceed on their way, and in far better style, than they could otherwise have
Such was the crowning achievement, in a series of conquests, in favour of all that Tyndale had accomplished ! A man, in regard to whose character and exertions, the British Christian especially may now well exclaim
18 At Nice, in June, “the Pontiff embraced the favourable opportunity to sound the disposition of the two monarchs relatively to the conduct of Henry. From both he received the same answer, that if he would publish his Bull, they would send ambassadors to England to protest against the schism ; would refuse to entertain the relations of amity with a prince who had separated himself from the Catholic Church; and would strictly forbid all commercial intercourse between their subjects and English merchants."– Lingard. What was doing in Paris at the moment, was below this historian's notice, but the Pontiff's day was past. His awful Bull proved nothing more than a bellou; and the reader will not forget that this was the selfsame Paul III., who had so basely cringed to Henry VIII. in 1536 ; but all the powers, in turn, were grossly given to mendacity, and in this case the Pontiff was deluded by both monarchs. Neither of them would afterwards even receive Cardinal Pole into their dominions. It was only Crumucell, who was neither to be deluled or overreached by the King of France, or cren the Inquisition, as to the Bible.
MITRED ABBOTS-DISSOLUTION OF MONASTERIES-NEW ARTICLES-BILLS
OF ATTAINDER-THE SIX ARTICLES APPLIED-FRUSTRATED-CRANMER
SAFE-LATIMER IMPRISONED-ALES ESCAPES-CONSTANTYNE IN DANGER -THE TIDE TURNING—EXECUTION OF ABBOTS—CRUMWELL'S POLICY
MONASTIC SPOILS. THE SCRIPTURES PRINTING IN VARIOUS EDITIONS-CRUMWELL'S REMARK
ABLE ENERGY IN THIS DEPARTMENT-THE KING SWAYED ONCE MORE
THE CAUSE IN PROGRESS-CRANMER BUSY IN PROSPECT OF HIS FIRST
EDITION, NEXT SPRING-IT IS DISTINCTLY SANCTIONED BY HENRYSINGULAR PROCLAMATION-HENRY NOW COMMANDING ALL HIS SUBJECTS
TO USE THE SCRIPTURES IN ENGLISH.
As if it had been to render the triumph of last year still more conspicuous, the present stands distinguished in Henry's reign, for the number of editions of the Sacred Volume entire. Not fewer than four editions of the Bible issued from the press, and a fifth was almost ready ; besides three editions of the New Testament separately. The compositors and printers in London had never before been so engaged, nor so
hard at work in any department, since the invention of printing had been introduced into England.
All this too is the more worthy of notice, as Cranmer, however busy with his first edition, did not make his appearance before the public till next spring, or April 1540. Before proceeding, however, to any detail, the state of England, and in its connexion with foreign parts, must first be understood, as the account will then be read with that interest which belongs to it.
Of this eventful year, we can scarcely fail to have one luminous view, however painful; if we now place Crumwell, Cranmer, and Latimer, on the one side; the Duke of Norfolk, Gardiner, and Tunstal, on the other; with Henry standing between them, to hold the balance. Troubled about many things, the wayward monarch was but ill at ease, and we shall see him make either scale preponderate, just as his fear or his fancy suggested at the moment. Crumwell, it has been affirmed, had some presentiment of his downfall, for nearly two years before his death, and made provision for his dependents, which Wolsey had not. If this be correct, the time harmonises with the return of Gardiner from France. But, at all events, the last and deadly struggle for pre-eminence and power, on the part of Crumwell, has now menced, though he had still a year and a half to live. We shall see him trembling for the ground on which he stood, as well as for all his honours. At his outset, he had said to Cavendish, his neighbour servant in Wolsey's household, that, in going to Henry, he would either make or mar all ; and the truth is, that, in one sense, he did both ; first the one, and then the other. In many points, Wolsey and Crumwell were extremely different characters, but in both may be seen, as a warning to posterity, the rise and fall of political expediency. With regard to Hugh Latimer, the only man who ever dared to speak out before the King and his courtiers, he is about to retire from the tempestuous scene ; and to say nothing of cruelty, Henry, acting in the meanest style imaginable, to the very end of his reign, will accommodate him—with a prison ! Like Festus of old, willing to show his courtiers a pleasure, he will leave Latimer bound. Cranmer will this year, in one instance, discover more fortitude than perhaps he ever did in the course of his whole life. And as for the
able triumvirate in opposition, we shall see how dexterously they wrought to each other's hands against their three opponents.
To commence, however, more particularly, and with the Monarch himself. At the end of last year, we left him murmuring at the coldness and delay of Charles V. ; (at which period the Pontiff had at last issued his long suspended Bull ;) and now, on the 19th of January, he repeats his complaint to Sir Thomas Wyatt. In “this weighty matter of his marriage” with the Duchess of Milan, he requires a positive answer ; and that “ some barking preachers who had slandered him in their pulpits might be punished.” On the 13th of February, he commands Wyatt to advertise the Emperor that Cardinal Pole is coming to him as Legate from Rome, (in connexion with the Bull now issued) requiring that, in conformity with the treaty of Cambray, he suffer him not to enter his dominions, or expel him if he does. He then chooses to add, that Pole “ has conspired to murder him and his children, and to take upon himself the whole rule.'2
Presently, however, other adverse policy had transpired, as on the 9th of March we find Wriothsley, the English ambassador at Brussels, addressing Crumwell. He had asked leave to return, but neither the Queen-Regent nor her Council would consent: they had even intreated him to remain, the Queen herself adding—“the Emperor's ambassador tarrieth against my commandment in England, at your master's instance, and I am not angry that he so doth, to gratify him." To the royal suitor, such procedure had been sufficiently provoking : it had roused him, and opened his eyes ; for before the arrival of this letter, he had got previous information. On the 10th, therefore, he had written to Wyatt, desiring that he would thank the Emperor for refusing to receive Cardinal Pole into his kingdom, and for his not sanctioning the Pontiff's Bull. At the same time, his Majesty complains that" a sudden rumour spread throughout Germany, Spain, and other parts, that the Emperor, the French King, and other princes, by the instigation of the Bishop of Rome, were forth with to invade England”—“ that the Emperor's ambassador, (Eustace Chapuis, just referred to,) in the height of these rumours, bad suddenly desired leave to depart, showing no letters, but merely saying, that it was by commandment of Mary, the Princess Regent of the Low Countries—that for the indemnity of his English merchants, whose ships had already been detained, and in return for incivilities shown to the English ambassador at Brussels, he had arrested all ships belonging to the Low Countries, or to Spain, wishing now to know what the Emperor's intentions were. That since he, the Emperor,
| Harl. MS., No. 282, fol. 43.
° Idem, fol. 47.
3 Gov. State Papers, i., p. 595.