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THE LIBRARY OF THE UNIVERSITY OF CALIFORNIA LOS ANGELES

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MEMOIRS
OF

SIR

THOMAS MORE,
wmi

NEW TRANSLATION
HIS

OF HIS UTOPIA,

HISTORY OF KING RICHARD


AND

III,

HIS LATIN POEMS.

% ARTHUR CAYLEY,
Like Cafo firm, like Aristides just. Like rigid Cincinnatus nobly poor,

the Younger, Esq.

A tlauDtless

soul, erect,

who

smil'd on death.

thojsok

IN

TWO VOLUMES.

Vol. I.

LONDON
PUBLISHED BY CADELL AND DAVIS, STBAND.
1808.

I'rintidtj lUwiJlll, D><gt aixi SlniiuoH, EJinturgb,

..

2>A

CONTENTS.
CHAP.
Biograpliers of Sir
I.

Thomas More.
Sir

Mr. Roper.
.
.

Mr. More. ...

The knighfs
.... His

ancestry
,
, .

John More.
his infancy..

Sir

Thomas* mother.

birth.

Anecdote of
. .
.

His school-education.
.
.
.

.... Cardinal Morton.

More's early
.

talents.

Specimen of
.

his

early wit and rejection.

He
.

is

sent to Oxford,
.
. .

His first acthe law.


. .

quaintance with Erasmus.

JVolsey.

More studieth
F"!/.

He

is

made

reader at Furnival' s-inn,


to
.

and

reads a public lecture.


.
.

His verses on Elizabeth, queen

Henry
. .

He

discovers

some

inclination for the monastic state.

Erasmus' early high opinion of

him

Dean
.

Colet.
. .

More's

letter to

him
.

Colet's Iiigh opi. .

nion of More.
.

More marries Jane

Colte.
.

His family by
.
.
.

her.

...

He

renews his application to the law.

Henry VII.

More't
. .

early patriotism.

...He

offends
.
.

the king
.

Henry's revenge.
in retirement.

More

escapes Dr. Fo.t'x xnarp.

His application

... .

Four juvenile poems by him

CHAP.
Accession of

IL
his

Henry PUT.

Consummation of

marriage with

Catharine of Arragon
verses on the coronation.
.

More
.

re-appears in the world

and

writes

Anecdote of Emson and Dudley


. .
.

More's attucltment
sheriff's.
.

to

Erasmus.

He

is

made one of
. . .

the under-

His high estimation as a


wife.
.

laivyer.

He

replies to

Dor-

pius
vice:
. .
.

His second

Henry

desires to

engage him

in his ser-

He

accompanies Tonstall to Flanders


Buslciden and JEgidms
cause for the pope.
.
. .

His

letter to

Eras-

mus on

hti

embassy

More's
Is knighted,

letter to

Jt^arham

He pleads a

&c

12fA)571

Ti

CONTENTS.
His account of hhjirst advancement.
T/ie /ling's intimacy tvilh More.
.
.
.

Henry\s earlier court.


.
.

Luther.
.
. .

Erasmus persecuted.

....
mus.

More
. . .

expected the reformation.


defends him.
.
'. .'

Edivard Lee attacks ErasMore.


.
.

More
.
.

Brixitis attacks

Erasmus
,
. .

defe'uls him.

Morels

letter

to the university
.
.

of Oxford.

He
.

is

made

speaker of the commons:

'.

His speech on the


. .

occasion.

Anecdotes of IVolsey and More.


Spain.
.
.

IVolscy wishes to send,

him

to

Progress of Luther.
.
,

Henry

writes agaiiisL him,


.
.

and

More
mus

is

suspected.

Luther's reply and Ross' rejoinder^


. .

^ Eras.
. .

writes against Luther.


in

More
.

is

exhorted to
is

ivrite.

His

character

the

Ciceronianus.
. . .

He

made

chancellor
.

of the
.

duchy of Lancaster.
is

Anecdote of the king and More,


.

More
loss

sent on foreign e7nbassies.

His success at Camlray.

His

hyfire,

and

letter to his

wife

59

CHAP. m.
Cardinal IVolsey.
Charles.
. . .

His advancement, and quarrel with the emperor

Anecdotes of
marriage.
.
.

More and Wolsey.


. .

The kings
.

scruples

regarding
tlie

his
.

His inconsistency.
. . .

More's conduct in
. . .

matter.

fVolseys fall.

More made

chancellor.
.

The

duke of Norfolk's speech and Mores on the occasion.

More's imimpartiali.

provement

in the office.
.

His respect

to his father,

aud
. .

ty to his family.

Anecdotes of his chancellorship.


.
.

He

clears

the chancery of causes.


his writings.
. . .

He

is

offered

money by

the bishops for


. .

Is

again importuned by Henry on the divorce.


.
.

He

determines to resign the seal.


to

JVhich he at

last

effects.

Henry' s promise

him.

More's contempt of worldly grandeur.


. .

.... His wife

is

more concerned.

Anecdotes of her.

More

provides situations for his attendants,

and

calls

together his family.


.
.

.... His poverty.

His
tion.

letters to
.

Death of hvs father, and his filial affection. His monumental inscripErasmus on his resignation.
.
.

His buildings and charity at Chelsea.

The remarks of

, .

CONTENTS.
Fox and
Unies.
. .

Tu

otJieis

on More's persecution of heterodoxij.


rafutation of his calumniators

State of the

Mon's own

g5

CHAP.
Morf:^s anticipation

IV.
public business.
to

of his fate.

..He withdraws from


bishops.
.

.... His remark on Henry's second marriage, and advice


nell.
. . .

Cromhis

His behaviour io the


. .

Malignant scrutiny on
letter to Cromivell,
.

conduct.

The nun of Kent.


.
.

More's

and a
.

curious anecdote.

More

accused of misprision of treason.


. . .

Cou'
. .

duct of the committee for examining him.

More's firmness.
. ,
.

His
ply.

letter to the king.,


.
.
.

<

He

is

accused of ingratitude.

His re.

Anecdote on

his return
bill.

home.
.

The

king's

conduct.
.

More's name erased from the


Henry's triumph in his new

Acts passed in parliament.

titles.
.

Opinions of the Romish party,


.

and of

their adversaries.

More

refuseth the oath of succession.


.

He
Jiis

is

cited to appear at
.
.

Lambeth,

His foreboding, and


his

letter to
.

daughter.

Cranmer's arguTnent, and

curious letter.
.

More and

Fisher committed to the Tower, and attainted.

More's 141

sentiments on the king's marriage, and the pope's primacy

CHAP.
Henry

V.
.
.

FHI
.

atid

Constantius

More' s firmness.
His pains

Anecdotes. ..."

Mrs. Roper
manner.
.
.

visiteth

to meet his fate in a becoming His rejection on the execution of Reynolds, &c. His
. .
.

him

verses on Cromwell's promise

Lady More visiteth him, and some


letters

of

the

privy -council.

His two
.

to

his

daughter
.

His
. .

books taken from him.


arraigned.
. .

Rich's conversation with More.

More
to the

The commissioners and jury


His answer
to

More's answer

indictment

Rich

The jury find him


of the indictment

guilty

His arguments as
cellor's

to the insufficiency

The chan-

answer, and More's reply

Sentence passed upon him


. .

Farther proceedings

More's courage and constancy.

His meet-

. .

viii

CONTENTS.
ing with
ter.
. . .

his

children.

Anecdote.
sent to

His
.

last

letter to his

daugh-

Sir
.

Thomas Pope
last jokes,

him.
.

More's preparation for

death.

His

and

execution.

His burial

19 r>

CHAP.
Anecdote.
.
.

VI.
in

Queen Ann and Cranmer indolent


.
.

More's cause.

Effects of More's execution.

Sentiments of the Emperor Charlei^


. .

Cardinal Pole, and Paulus Jovius.

More's religion, bigotry, &c.

.... Not so extravagant as some, in his notions of the papal power.

.... His propens it 1/


at his death

to jesting,
. . .

and

witty sayings.

His behaviour

natural.

His

disinterestedness,
. ,

and
.

integrity while

chancellor,

and

virtue as
.

a patriot minister.

Queen Catharine's

opinion of More.

His greatness of mind, excellent temper, and


his

good management of

family.

Other

traits
.

of

his

character.

.... His learning, modesty, and benevolence.


of

His Utopia, History


.

Richard Ul, epigrams,

letteis,

and
.

controversial writings.
.
.

Jiumet's character of him as a writer.

The

editions
.
.

of More's
.

English and Latin works.


mily,
.
.

His pergonal

peculiarities.
.
.

His fa.
.

Erasmus' encomium on More's house.


to

Mrs. Roper.
Basset.

Her

letter

her father in prison.


.
.

Her daughter

More's

letter to Gonellus.
.
. .

The death of Erasmus and view of Mi


.

character.

More's remonstrances with him misrepresented.

25f

APPENDIX.
Erasmus R(4.
Vlrtco Hulteno

2^7

Erasmus Rot. Gulielmo Budico


Gulielmus Covrinus Nucerinus Philippo Montano

306
310
in

Clarorum

et

Doctorum Virorum vnria Epigrammata

laudem Thomct

Mori

328

MEMOIRS
OF

SIR

THOMAS MORE.

Vol.

I.

MEMOIRS
OF

SIR

THOMAS MORE.

CHAR
Biographers of SirThomas More
knight's ancestry.
birth.
.
.

I.

Mr. Roper.
.
.

Mr. More
.
. .

Tht
His

Sir

John More.
. .

Sir Thomas' mother.


school- education.
.

Anecdote of
.

his irfancy.

His
. . .

. .

Car-

dinal Morton.

More's

earli/ talents.

Specimen of

his early wit

and

reflection.
. . .

He is sent to
.

Oxford.

Hisfirst acquaintance with


the
law.
. .
.

Erasmus.

JVolsey.

More

studieth

He
His

is

made

reader at FurnivaP s-inn, and reads a public lecture.


Elizabeth, queen to

verses on

Henry VH.
. .

He
.

discovers

some inclination
.
.

for

the monastic state,


Colet.
. . . .

Erasmus^ early high opinion of him.


letter
to

Dean
More.

More's

him.
.
.

Colet^s

high opinion
her.
.
.

of

More marries Jane


to

Colte.

His family by
. . .

He

renews his application


patriotism.
, .
.

the

law.

Henry VII.
. .

More's early
.

He

offends the

king.

Henry's revenge.
in retirement.

More
Four

escapes

Dr. Fox's

snare.

His application

. . .

Juvenile

poems by him,

MJ'MOIRS OF

J.F examples of the

most

rigid integrity,

with the sacrifiee

of

life itself in

the cause of supposed truth, deserve the at-

tention of mankind, few characters op record can have a

higher claim to this attention than our celebrated country-

man

Sir

Tliomas IMore.

Our most
him

authentic sources of information

respecting

are, his Lite written

by William Roper, Esq. who marMargaret


;
;

ried his favourite daughter

that written

by Thotwo by

mas

]\Iorc,

Escj. his

great-grandson

and a

letter or

Erasmus

relative to his friend's

domestic
arc

histor}'.

The other
on
his

extant accounts of Sir

Thomas

little

else

than copies
light

from one or other of these, and throw no new


histor}'.

Mr. Roper,

naturally the

more

likely

of the two bio-

graphers tp be well-inl'ormed upon the subject, hath been

accused of allowing

his affection

to prevail in

some mea-

sure over his judgment on this occasion, and of writing a

panegyric rather than a history.

Habits of long intimacy


it is

with a character of great domestic worth,

true, attach

us to

it

in a degree of enthusiasm,

and one so long enjoy-

ing the intimacy and esteem of such a character as the


knight, had,

we must allow, peculiar difficulties to encounter in this way, when he afterward became his biographer. As to his qualification in point of information, however, we may allow his own words to be imanswerable, knowing hi? doings and mind no man living so well, by reason I zc-as con-

SIR T.
ibiually resident in Ids house

MORE.
hij

the space of sixteen years

and

more.

And

for the respectability of his character,


let his

though

tombstones too often exaggerate,

epitaph, as pre-

served by Mr. Somner, be allowed to speak.

Hie jacet
Vencrabilis vir Gulielmus
Filius ct hasies

Roper armiger,
armigcri;

quondam Johannis Roperi


Et Margareta,

Uxor ejusdcm
Filia

Gulielmi,
militis

quondam Tlioma; Mori

Siimmi olim Angliae

cancellarii

Graecis Latinisque Uteris doctissima.

Qui quidera Gulielmus


Rcgii successit

patri suo in officio

Prothonotarialus suprema; curias bauci


;

in

quo cum annis liv


idem officium

Fideliter ministrasset,

Filio suo priraogenito Thoraae reliquit.

Fuit

is

Gulielmus domi forisque munificens,


;

Mitis, raisericors

incarceratorum,
baculus.

Oppressorum

et

paupcrum

Genuit px Mnrg.irpla nxore, quam unicara


Habuit,
filios

duos

et filias tres

ex

iis

Vidit in vita sua nepotes et pronepotes.

Uxorem

in virili a!tatc amisit

viduatus uxore,

Castissime vixit annis xxxiii.

Tandem

completis in pace diebus, decessit

In senectute bona ab omnibus desideratus

Die IV mensis Jan. ann. Chr. Salv. m.dlxxvii


iEtatis vero suae lxxxii.

Mr. More, whose account of the knight


that of his predecessor,

is

fuller

than

may

be presumed from

his direct

relationship,
to

ME.MOIRS OF
have made
his additions with authenticity.

He

is

said to have been a person of respectability,

and to

liave

been employed by the English clergy as their agent in Spain and at the court of Rome. On his death, the English
catholic clergy erected a

Roman

monument

to his

memory,
had of

as a testimony of their respect and the sense they


his services.

A
;

celebrated protestant divine of our country

pronounces him, however, a narroK-m'indtd zealot and a


very fanatic

while
it is

Anthony Wood says of

his

Life of Sir

Thomas, that

incomparably well written, a judgment to


"\^'ood

be expected from

similes hahent labra lactucas.

His

bigotted attachment to the religion of his celebrated ancestor


is

indeed too apparent in his work

and

his biogra-

phical follower hath moreover frequent cause to regret his

neglect of chronological order, he having pretty imi)licitly

followed the indiflerent arrangement of Staplcton.

^\'e will

add

his

epitaph as preserved by AVood.

D. O. M. S.
Tlioma'
-Alagni
L't
illiiis

Moro

(Hoc. cbor. anglo


IVIori

Tlioma
ris

Anglic

canccllarii

martj

proucpoti alque liarcdi


et pictatc insigiii

Viro probitatc
Qjii,

In

admodum apud Britanuos exempio, fratrein natu minorein amplum transcripsit


raro

Patriinoiiium, et presbyler

Romae

factus,

Inde jusiu scdis apostolica; in patriam


Projcctus, plu!^cuios arinos strenuam fidei

Propagaiidap iiavavit operam.

Postca

cleri

angUcani negotia tii annos RonicE

Et

in Hiipaiiia P. P. Paulo v et Gregorio

iv

SIR T.
Surama

MORE.

'

integritate et industria

Suisque sumptibus procuravit-

Tandem de subrogando

anglis episcopo
felicitei

Ad

Urban, vni missus, negotio eo

Coufecto, laborura mercedem recepturus,

XI

Ex hac vita Apr Ann


;

migravit
:

m.dcxxv

^tatis

suae Lix.

Clems anglicanus msestus P.

The modem biographer of


his intermediate biographers

Sir

Thomas More,

as all

of

have done, must rely on these

two
ceed

writers as his safest guides.

We

shall find

their ac-

counts to admit of considerable amplification as


;

we

pro-

and should

either

of our conductors occasionally

make what appears


to use

to us a false step,

we must endeavour

what circumspection we can

at this distant period in

avoiding his error.

Respecting the knight's early ancestry, both of our guides

have
ever,
Sir

left

n*; ill

infunued.

From
John

the great-grandson,

howquar-

we

learn that Sir

INIore, knight,

the father of
his coat

Thomas, bare arms from

his birth,

having

tered.

By reason

of Henry VIII.'s seizure of their evidences,


their ancestry
;

he adds, the family could not make out


land, or the latter from them.

but

he had heard that they proceeded from the Mores of IreSir

Thomas himself informs

us in his epitaph, that he sprang fi'om no noble family but of an honest stock.

Sir

John More appears

to

have been born about the year


MEMOIRS OF
lie
is

1440.*
talents

said to have been a lawyer of disUiigiiished

and

integrity,

and was one of the


of Henry VIII. f

justices of the

King's

Bench

in the reign

He

is

described

by

Sir

Thomas

in the epitaph

already alluded

to,

homo
;

ci-

vilis,

suavis, innocens, niitis, miscricors, cquus et integer

an-

nis

quidem gravis, sed corpore plusqtiam pro atatc

vivido.

He

lived to a eieat ao-e,


liis

and had the singular fortune of seeing

son Chancellor of England, as will appear by an anec-

dote hereafter to be related.

Camden,
which
will

in his

Remains,

relates
fair

a bon-mot of Sir John

not preposses the

sex in his favour.

He comhis

pared a
into a

man

choosing a wife, to one

who dipped

hand
it

bag which contained twenty snakes and one


one
t/iat

eel

was

tzienttj to

he caught the

eel.

After this,

we
was

are surprised at finding that the old gen-

tleman had the resolution to take three dips himself; for


learn that he
thrice married.

we

The maiden name


Tliomas, was
shire.

of his

first

wiic, the

mother of
in
;

Sir

Ilandcombe, of Holywell

Bedford-

The age

of portents was not yet gone by

and Dr.

Clement, a famous physician of the time, and the intimate


friend of

More, reported of

her, that,

on the night

after her

marriage, she saw, in a dream, engraven on her wedding


ring, the

number and

characters of her children, the face

of one shining uith superior brightness.


* Erasmus to Budteus.

She had Jane, marf More>

SIR T.
ried to

MORE.

S
calls

Richard Stafferton, Esq.


;

whom Mr. More


John

noble gentleman
the father of

Elizabeth,
Rastell
;

wife of

Rastell, Esq.

Judge

and Thomas, the celebrated

subject of these memoirs.

only know, that the

Of Sir John's other wives we christian name of the last was Alice.
in Hertfordshire,

She

lived

on her jointure

at a

messuage
Being debefore her

then called jNIoreplace, but since Gubbons, in the parish

of Northmimes, and outlived her son-in-law.


prived of her possessions in Henry's fury, a
little

death, she died at Northal, about a mile distant,

and was

buried in that church.*

Thomas, the only son of


father's usual residence

Sir

John More, was born


London,

at his
i46o.

in

Milk-street,

in 1480,

the twentieth year of the reign of our fourth Edward.

An-

other presage of the child's future eminence, related by his


nurse,
is,

that one

day

as she

was riding with him


slipt

in her
in-

arms over a piece of water, the horse


to a deep
for his

by accident

and dangerous hole. To give the infant, a chance life, she threw him over a hedge into a field, and

having afterward, with

much difficult}-, made

her

own escape,

she found him, to her no small surprise, not only unhurt,

but sAveetly smiling upon her. f

The
in

school of

S'.

Anthony

in the parish of Bennet-fink,

Thread needle-street, belonging

to

an hospital of the same


time of

name, which had been

in high reputation since the

Henry VI, and, beside other eminent


* More.

persons, numbereth

t More.

Vol.

I:

10

WE.MOIHS OF

archbishops Heath and AVhitgift

among
his

its

scholars, aflord-

cd More hkewise ihc rudiments of


a learned

education.*

Here

man named
INIr.

Nicholas Holt was his master, under

whom,
passed

to use

More's expression, he rather greedily de-

voured than lehuvcly chezved his grannnar rules, and far surall his

schoolfellows in understanding

and

diligence.

By

the interest of his father, iVIore afterward

became an

inmate of the house of Cardinal Morton, f of whom he hath transmitted us a high character, as well in his Utopia
as in his History of Richard
saith

HI. His authority

in the state,
his

More, was not more weighty than were


virtue
;

wisdom
his
his-

and
skill

his

eloquence was polished and convincing,

great as a lawyer, his understanding incomparable,

memory
on

very extraordinary.
it

The king and

state relied up-

his counsel, for

was

his policy

which placed the crown

of the usuipcr Richard upon the head of Henry, and unit-

ed the houses of York and Lancaster.

Henry VIII made

him archbishop of Canterbury and chancellor of England, to which the pope added the honour of cardinal. Mr. Roper informs
dinal's house,

us, that

while

More was
among

in the car-

though he were young of years, yet would he


the players,
ore n

at Christmas suddenly sometimes step-in

and, never studying for the matter, make apart of his


there presently
apart

among them,

zchich

made

the lookers-on more

than

all

the players beside.


his wit

The

cardinal, he adds,

took sreat

deliirht in

and towardness, and would


+ Utopia and Ropfr.

* Roper and Newcourt*

SIR T. MORE.
often say of

11

More

to the nobility

who happened

to

be din-

ing witli him, this child, here waiting at the table, zvhosoever
shall live to see
it,

will

prove a marvellous man.

The

following curious specimen of More's early wit


is

and

reflection,

extracted from his English works.

'

2^, 'CiomaSi S^xt in his youth devised in his father's house

in

London, a goodly hanging of

fine

painted cloth with

nine pageants and verses over every one of those pageants,

which verses expressed and declared what the images in


those pageants represented.

And

also in those pageants


in

were painted the things that the verses over them did
effect declare.

Which

verses here follow.

In the

first

pageant was painted a boy playing at the


this

top and scourge, and over


loweth.

pageant was written

as fol-

CHILDHOOD.
I

am

called Cliildhood, in play

is all

ray

miud

To

cast a quoit, a cokstcle


set

and a

ball,
;

top can I

and drive
to

it

in his kind

But would

God

these hateful bookes all

Were

in a fire burnt to
I lead

powder small

Then might

my

life

always in play.

Which

life

God

send

me

to

mine ending day

JS>

MEiMOIRS Of
In the second pageant was painted a goodly fresh young

man,
fist

riding

upon a goodly

horse, having a

hawk on

hiu

and a brace of greyhounds following him.

And under
in the first

the horse's feet

was painted the same boy that

pageant was playing at the top and scourge.


this

And

over

second pageant the writing was


IVIANIIOOD.

this.

Manhood

am,

therefore I

me

delight

To

hunt and hawk,

to nourish-up

and

feed,

The greyhound

to the course, the

hawk

to the flight,

And
Yet

to bestride a

good and

liisfy

steed
indeed.
sweeter,

These things become a very


thinketh this boy his peevish
force, his reason is

man
no

game

But what, no

better.

In the third pageant was painted the goodly young man.


(in the

second pageant) lying on the ground.


love,

And upon

him stood Lady Venus, goddess of


this

and by her upon


over this third

man

stood the
this

little

God

Cupid.

And

pageant

was the writing that followcth.


VExNUS

AND

CUPID.
might

Whoso na knoweth the strength, power, and Of Venus and me her little son Cupid
;

Thou Manhowl

shalt a

mirrour be aright

By

us subdued
fiery

for all tliy great pride,

My
Now
Shall

dart pierccth thy tender side.


erst dispisedst children

thou

who

small

wax

a child again and be

my

thrall.

SIR T.

MORE.

14

In the fourth pageant was painted an old sage father,


sitting in a chair.

And

lying under his feet

was painted

the image of
geant.

Venus and Cupid that

Avere in the third pathis.

And

over this fourth pageant the scripture was

AGE.
Old age

am

I,

with lockes thin and hoar,


life
}

Of

our short
discreet

the last and best part,

Wise and

the public weal therefore

I help to rule, to

my

labour and smart.

Therefore Cupid withdraw thy fiery dart.

Chargeable matters shall of love oppress

Thy

childish

game and

idle business.

In the

fifth

pageant was painted an image of Death, and

under
above

his feet lay the old


this fifth

man

in the fourth pageant.

And,

pageant, this Avas the saying.

DEATH.
Though T he foul, iigl>, lean, and jiilshape, Yet there is none in all this world wide,
That may

my power

withstand or escape

Therefore sage father, greatly magnified,

Descend from your chair,


Vouchsafe to lend, the'
it

set

apart your pride.

be to your pain,

To me,

a fool, some of your wise brain.

In the sixth pageant was painted Lady Fame, and under her feet was the picture of Death that was in the fifth

a
pageant.
followetli.

MEMOIRS OF

And

over this sixth pageant the writing was as

FAME.
Fame
For
I

am

called,

marvel jou nothing,

Though

with (ongucs
is

am compassed
chief living,
I

all

round,

in voice of people

my

O cruel
When
Maugre thy

Death, thy power

confound.

thou a noble
teeth, to live

man

hast brought to ground,


I

cause him shall

Of

people in perpetual memory.

In the seventh pageant was painted the image of Time,

and under

his feet Avas lying the picture

of

Fame

that was

in the sixth pageant.

And

this Avas

the scripture over this

seventh pageant.

TIME.
I

whom

thou

sees

with liorologe in hand,


tho laid of pvery bour,

Am

named Time,

I shall in space destroy both sea

and

land.

O
Who

simple Fame,
of his

bow

darest thou

man

honour,
;

Promising

name an

endless flower

may

in the world

have a name eternal


all.

W^hen

I shall in

process destroy the world and

In the eighth pageant wa pictured the image of

Lady
her

Eternity, sitting in a chair, under a sumptuous cloth of


state,

crowned with

aji

imperial croAvn.

And under

SIR T.

MORE.
was
it

15

feet lay the picture of Time, tliat

in the seventh pageant,

and above

this eighth

pageant was

written as foUoweth.

ETERNITY.
He
*
needeth not to boast, I

am

Eternity,

The very name

signifieth well.

And mine empire


Art nothing
else

infinite shall be.


tell,

Thou, mortal Time, every man can


but the mobility

Of sun and moon, changing

in every degree

When
For
all

they shall leave their course, thou shalt be brought,

thy pride and boasting, into nought.

In the ninth pageant was painted a poet


chair;

sitting in

and over

this

pageant were there written, these verses

in Latin following.

THE POET.
Has
fictas

quemcunque.juvat spectare figuras

Sed mira veros qui putat arte homines,


Ille potest veris

animura

sic

pascere rebus,

Ut

pictis oculos pascit imaginibus.


uti fragilis

Namque videbil

bona lubrica mundi,


cito pretereunt.

Tam

cito

non veniunt, quam

Gaudia, laus

et

honor, celeri pede omnia cedunt,^


?

Quid manet excepto semper amore Dei


Ergo homines, levibus jam jam

diffidite rebus,

Nulla reccssuro spes adiiibenda bono.

Qui

dabit icternam nobis pro

munere vitam

In pcrmansuro ponite vota Deo.'

f ;
;

16

MEMOIRS OF
About
the age of seventeen, Cardinal

Morton commit;

ted his charge to the university of Oxford


'^^'ood to St.

according to

Maryhall, but other writers agree to Canter-

bury (subsequently Christchurch) college.


of opinion that he had a chamber at
St.

Mr. Hearn was


Maryhall and

studied there, but that he belonged to Christchurch.*

He

remained two years at the university, and profited exceedingly, saith

Mr. Roper,

in rhetoric, logic,

and philosophy

proving, addcth the great-grandson, what wonders wit and


diligence can
in

accomphsh, when united, as they seldom

arc,

one painful student.

That auspicious event


about
It

in More's history, his

intimacy
its

with the good and learned Erasmus, probably had


149;.

origin

this

time; the great scholar being at Oxford in 1407his

was probably by

advice and that of other learned

friends, assisted

by

his

own

taste, that

More was

led not

to neglect the
for
it

Greek language

in his

classical education,

was not commonly studied then


it,

in

our country.

He

acquired

we

are told, t under the auspices of "William

Grocyn, at that time professor or public teacher of Greek


at Oxford,

and Thomas Linacer the celebrated physician


to be a

and he continued

that noble language, as

warm friend to the cultivation of we shall find by his letter on the

subject to the university of Oxford.

AVolsey also, was at this time bursar of IMagdalen college, and, as well as Colet
* Edit. Roper. f

and Pace, probably enjoyed the


Jortin.

t Erasmus, ep. 511.

SIR T.

MORE,

17

intimacy of

More and Erasmus.


to liave
;

He was
More

as yet too

young

and humble
the cardinal

materially manifested the character of

and

it is

probable that

in early life con-

ceived too favourable an opinion of Wolsey, which


that his friend

we know

Erasmus

certainly

had done.

At

the age of eighteen INIore

is

said to

have written some

1498.

of his epigrams, and to have continued to utter, in the

manner we have already


nity of this
life,

not

many reflections on the vacommonly made at his age. By way


seen,
\\\s

of exercise he translated the Tyrannicida of Lucian into


Latin, Avhich he called
first fruit of the

Greek

languao-e.

He

also wrote a declamation in answer to this piece, with

such force of argument, saith his partial great-grandson,


that
it

seemeth not

to give

place to Lucian either in inven-

tion or eloquence.

From

the university, which,


in 14.99,

accordmg

to the

same

writer, i45.

he must have quitted


study law
his time,
;

he removed to New-inn to
rsell

where, saith Roper, he very


Avas

prospered for

and

soon afterward admitted of LincolnVinn.


little

At

this

age his father allowed him so

money

that he

could not dress with decency, and exacted from him a most
particular account of his expences.

Yet

this

conduct was

apjilauded by

More

in his riper years, as

having preserved

him from
neral.

idleness,

gaming, bad company, and vice in ge-

Having been reader at


Vox.

Furnival's-inn,

by Roper's

ac-

18

MEMoms or
must have obtained that
also read a i)ublic

count, above three years, ]\Iore


1-500.

situation about I.jOO.

For some time he


in

lecture

on

S'.

Austin de civitate Dei,

the church

of

S.

Lawrence

in the

Old Jewry; ivhcrcunto there


excellent

resorted, saith

his son-in-law,
all the

Dr. Groci/n an

cunning man, and

chief learned of the city of London.

We

also learn

from Erasmus that More had a numerous auditory at this lecture, and that neither priests nor old men were ashamed
or repented of having derived sacred

wisdom from

the

young

layman.*

1503.

The death of Elizabeth, queen to Henry VII, in 1503, afforded More another occasion for the exercise of his juvenile muse. The following curious specimen of the poetry
and language of that age,
works.
is

extracted from his English

SI

rueful

Hamcntattou written

by Mr. Thomas

jNIore in his

youth, of the death of queen Elizabeth, mother to king

Henry VIII, Avife to king Henry VII, and eldest daughter which queen Elizabeth died in childto kino- Edward IV bed, in February in the year of our Lord 1503, and in the
;

1^* year of the reign of king Henry VII.


* Epist. to Hutten.

SIR T.

MORE.

]fi

je that put your

truat

and confidence

In worldly joy and

frail prosperity,

That

so live here as

ye should never hence.


look here upon

Remember death and


Ensample
i'^ourself
I

me

think there

may
now

no better be.

wot well that


late,

in this realm
lo

was

Your queen but

and

here I

lie

Was

I not

born of old worthy lineage,

Was

not

my

mother queen,

my

father king,

Was I

not a king's fare in marriage,


I

Had

not plenty of every pleasant thing


is

Merciful God, this

a strange reckoning

Riches, honour, wealth, and ancestry,


Ilath

me

forsaken,

and

lo

now

here I

lie.

If worship might have kept me, I

had not gone.

If wit might have


If

me

saved, I needed not fear,

money might have


But

holpe, I lacked none,


vaileth all this gear
?

good God, what


Death
is

When
]\Ie

come thy mighty messenger,


no
rptTiBdy,

Obey we must,

thr-rp is

hath he summoned, and lo

now

here I

lie.

Yet was

I late promised otherwise,

This year to live in wealth and delice

Lo whereto cometh thy

blandishing promise,

O
How

false astrology

and devinatrice,
thyself so wise

Of

God's
is

secrets

making

true

for this

year thy prophecy,

The year

yet lastetb, and lo

now

here I

lie-

MEMOIRS OF

O brittle
Thj
Account

wealth, aye full of bitterness,


single pleasure doubled
is

with pain

my

sorrow

first

and

my

distress

In sundrywise, and reckon thereagain

The joy
For
all

that I have had,

and

dare saync,
I
lie.

my

honour, endured yet have


wealth,

More woe than

and

lo

now

here I

AVhere are our

castles

now, where are our tewers


art

Goodly Richmond soon

thou gone from

me

At Westminster, that costly work of yours,

Mine own dear

lord,

now

shall I never see.

Almighty God vouchsafe to grant that ye


For you and your children well

My

palace builded

is,

and

lo

may edify now here I lie!

Adieu mine own dear spouse,

my

worthy

lord,

The

faithful love that did us

both combine,

In marriage and peaceable concord


Into your handes here
I

dean

resign,

To
The

be bestowed upon your children and mine.

Erst were

you

father,

and now must you supply

mother's part also, for lo

now

here I

lie.

Farewell

my

daugtitcr,
full

Lady Margaret,
grieved hath

God wot

oR

it

my

mind.

That you should go where we should seldom meet,

Now am

gone and have

left

you behind.
!

mortal folk that

we

be, very blind

That we

least fear, full oft it is


I first,

most nigh,

From you depart

and

lo

now

here I

lie.

SIR T.
Farewell

MORE.

21

Madam, my
a worth, for

lord's

worthy mother,

Comfort your son and be you of good cheer,

Take

all

it

will

be none other.

Farewell

my daughter
me
to

Catharine, late the fare

To prince
Pray
for

Arthur, mine

own
here

child so dear.

It booteth not for

weep

or cry,
I lie.

my soul,

for lo

now

Adieu Lord Henry,

my loving

son adieu,
estate.

Our Lord
Adieu

increase

your honour and

my daughter Mary, bright of hue, God make you virtuous, wise and fortunate.
Adieu sweet
heart,

my

little

daughter Kate,
thy destiny,

Thou

shalt, sweet

babe, such

is

Thy

mother never know, for

lo

now

here I

lie.

Lady

Cicyly, Anne, and Catharine,

Farewell
!

my

well-beloved

sisters three.

Lady

Bridget, other sister mine,

Lo
And

here the end of worldly vanity


well are

Now

ye that earthly

folly flee,

heavenly thinges love and magnify.

Farewell and pray for me, for lo

now

here I

lie.

Adieu

my
my

lords, adieu

my ladies all,
chone.
I

Adieu

my faithful servants every


commons,

Adieu

whom
;

never shall

See in this world

wherefore to the alone

Immortal God, verily three and one,


1

me commend

thy

infinite

mercy
here I
lie.'

Shew

to thy servant, for lo

now

52

MEMOIRS OF
Tiic religion which then reigned
in oui

counli7 hud

al-

ready

made a
some

very powerful impression on the


his present

mind of
lie
lived
fre-

More, and he discovered about


three,

age of twenty

inchiuition for the monastic state.

four years near the Charter-house,

and without a vow

quented

thiiiy

the spiritual

exercises

of the Carthusians.
friar,

Once he

inclined to

become a Franciscan

and

is

said

to have been deterred from his purpose only

by observing

that the siricfncss formerly prevalent in this country had

been considerably abated.

After this he had an intention

of becoming a priest in association with his faithful com-

panion
son,

\\ illiam

Lilly

but God, exclaims his great-grandto another estate not to live in soin

had

allotted

him

litude,

but to be a pattern to the married

bringing-up

their children, in loving their wives,

and devoting every en;

deavour

to the

good of

their

country

yet excelling withal

in piety, charity, liumility,

obedience, and chastity.

ij06.

In 1506, Erasmus Avas in England and dedicated the Tyrannicida of Lucian, as well as a declamation of his
in

own

answer

to

it,

to

Richard Whitford, chaplain to bishop

Fox.

llie high opinion he

had already formed of More,

whose declamation on the same subject hath been before


noticed, "we

fmd thus strongly expressed


capi, idque

in that dedication.

Latine declamare
itti sets

impuhore Thoma Moro, cujus

tanta est J'acmidia, ut nihil non possit persuadere vel


tanta autem Jiominem caritate compkctor, ut etiam
si

hosti

saltare me, rest-imque ductaiejubeat, si7n non gravatim oh-

sni T. MOIIE.

23

temperaturus.

iSeque enbn

arhltror, niai inc

vehemcns

in

il-

ium falllt amor, unquam natuvam fuixisse ingenium hoc una


prccsentius, proinptiua, oculatiiis, argutius, breviterquc dotibus

omnigenis absolutius.

Accedit lingua ingenio par, turn inon/m

mira

festivitas, salis

plurimum sed candidi duntaxat,

ut nihil

in CO desideres

quod ad absolutwn pertineat patronum.

PVom

the

same

sreat scholar

we

leani that

More

cou](i

not shake-off"

his inclination for marriage,

and he therefore

preferred being a chaste husband to an impure priest.*

He
life,

held in view at this time,

it

is

said, as

a pattern of

the virtuous and learned Johannes

Picus of Mirandula,

whose

life,

letters,

and precepts he translated into English,


For
his ghostly-father,

and published them, f


celebrated foundation of
in

adds
;

his

great-grandson, he chose Colet,


S'.

Dean

of

S.

Pauls

Avhose

Paul's school

More compares
barbarity.

one of his

letters to the horse

of Troy, from which many,

issued to subvert

and overthrow ignorance and

Stapleton hath preserved a letter from

More

to Colet,

which confirms the respect in which he held the dean, and


is

a good picture of the state of his


is

own mind

at this time.

It

here translated.

THOMAS MORE TO DEAN COLET.


As I was w'alking lately in Westminster-hall, and musing upon other people's affairs, I encountered your boy. When I first saw him I rejoiced, for he was alway a favourite of
'

* Epist. to Hutten.

f Eng. Works.

24

MEMOIRS OF
I
I

mine, but more especially because

thought he could not


learnt

be here without you.

But when

from him that


for

you were not returned, and would be absent


time,
1

long

cannot express to you from what joy into what


I

sadness

was

cast.

'

For what can be more grievous to

me

than to be deprivI

ed of your sweet intercourse, whose most wise advice

was

accustomed to enjoy, with whose most delightful familiarity


to be recreated,

by whose impressive discourses


life

have been have been

roused to goodness, by whose

and example

amended,
tion I

lastly, in

whose very countenance and approba-

have found contentment.

Having under such auand unsup-

spices once felt strength


I naturally feel as
it

and confidence, deprived of them


in

were

the wide world

ported.

And

as lately, treading in your footsteps, I


hell,

had

escaped almost from the jaws of


ridice,

now

again like Eu-

but by a contrary law (she, because Orpheus look-

ed back upon
I relapse, I

you look not back upon me), know not by what impulse or necessit3% into
her, I, because

my
'

former obscurity.

For what
?

is

there in this
is

town

to incite

any one

to a

good

life

Or

rather, Avhat

there which doth not, by a thou-

sand devices and allurements, draw him from the arduous path of virtue, Avould
well in
it ?

his

disposition guide

him never so
in

"N^'hcrever

you go what do you hear but,

one

})lacc, the

hum

of feigned attachment or the honied poison


fierce hatreds, quarrels, strife,

of flattery, in another,

and

SIR T.
litigation?

MORE.
eyes,

25

Wherever you cast your

what can you see

but victualling-houses, fishmongers, butchers, cooks, puddingmakers,


fishers or fowlers,
its

who

administer to the belly,

the world, and

prince the devil.

The very houses

seize

a good part of our light and suffer us not to

behold the

sky

and

it is

the altitiule of our buildings, not the extent

of our horizon, which boundeth our view.

'

From

these causes I can the


still

more

readily foigive your


sifn-

loving to abide
plicity, free

in the country.
craft.

There you have

from city

Wherever you turn your eye

the face of earth cheereth your view, the grateful temper-

ature of the air refresheth, the very aspect of heaven delighteth you.

Nothing occurs there

to

your view save the

bounteous

gifts

of uature and tokens of sacred innocence.

Yet would

not have you so enamoured of these delights

as not to return to us as soon as

you can.

If the city disto

please you, yet Stepney (of which


so solicitous)

you are bound

be

al-

now
in

enjoy.

may afford 3'ou comforts equal to those you And thence you can occasionally visit the city,
for the exercise

which you have so great opportunities

of

your goodness,

'

For since those in the country are harmless


less

in

them-

selves, or at least liable to


will

wickedness, any physician

answer

there.

But from the height and inveteracy of


It
true, there

the disorder in town, any but the most skilful shall attempt the cure in vain.
the pulpit of
A'

is

sometimes come into


cure.

S.

Paul's those

who promise a

But

af-

OL.

I.

26
ler

MEMOIRS OF
having appeared to preach with phiusibiliiy,
tlicir

hfe

is

so

much

at variance with their precepts, that tliey heighten


alleviate the complaint,
Bi'l'iJ'

more than they

themselves
they are

sickest of any, they


fit

cannot persuaile others


;

tiiat

persons to cure thern

tbr io i)e l>andled

by the diseased,

fills

the diseased only with C<!:,tempt

and aversion.
health

But

if (as \\ic

wise affirm) he

is

littest to restore

whop*, the sick liath most confidence, wlio can doubt


is

^^at no one

so

fit

to cure the whole

town

as yourself?
their

By
to

whom,

with what satisfaction they

sutt'er

wounds

be handled, what confidence and obedience they shew you,

you have already


farther manifested

sufficiently experienced

and

it is

now

by the love of

all

toward you, and the


for

certain incredible anxiety which

prevails

your return.

Come

then at length

my

dear Colet, either for your Step-

ney's sake, which bewaileth your absence

day by day as
be

doth a child

its

mother, or for your country's sake which


a parent
!

you ought

to regard as

Lastly, though

this

the least motive for your return,

come

for

my

sake,

who

have devoted myself to you, and await your coming with


impatience.

Meanwhile

pass
as

my

time with Grocyn,


is

Linacer, and Lilly.

The

first,
;

you know,

sole

master

of

my

life

in
;

your absence
the thud,

the second, the preceptor of

my

studies

my

dearest

companion

in all I un-

dertake.

Farewell, and continue to love

me

as

you have done/

SIR T.

MORE.

27

Colet in his turn admired his disciple, and would sometimes say, England had but one wit, and that was

young

Thomas More.*
In a
letter to

Jodocus Jonas, Erasmus hath made


it

Colet's

eulogium, and with


can.

the panegyric of Vitriarius, a francis-

The

characters of these eminent men,


;

great a master, deserve perusal

and

if

drawn by so Erasmus hath not

given the reins a


his subject, it is

little

to his

imagination and embellished

no wonder that he so sincerely loved and

admired them.

They were

excellent ecclesiastics, with a

largeness of mind, a solidity of judgment,

and a freedom
no small

of thought and speech, far beyond their contemporaries,


very few excepted.
In

many
ijimself.

things they bore

re-

semblance to Erasmus

Colet

it

seems advised More to marry. ^


j\lore' friends

In the number of

was John Colte, Esq. of

Newhall

in Essex,

a gentleman of good family, and

who
Colte

had frequently
it

invited

More

to visit him.
it

The

invitation,
Jvlr.

seems, was at last accepted, and

proved that

had three daughters whose


education, if

honest conversation

and virtuous

we

believe

Mr. Roper, or perhaps we

may
More

suggest some other attractions

more current with youth,

fixed his afiections in that family.

On
life.

this

occasion

gave a remarkable instance of that peculiarity of character

which distinguished him through


* More.

His natural predi-

Jortin.

J More.

2S
lection

.MEMOIRS OF

was

in favour of tlic second


it

daughter

yet when he

considered, saith Roper, that

would he both great grief


see

and some shame

to the eldest,

to

her younger

sister

pre-

ferred hefore her in marriage, he then of a certain pity fram-

ed his fancy

to her,

and soon after married


that Mr.

her.

It

is

to be wished

Roper had made use of


pity, in
this passage.

al-

most any other expression than

It

appears to be perfectly within the compass of More's very


peculiarcharactcr, that feeling for the disappointment which

the elder sister might experience in finding her younger


sister

preferred to her in marriage, he might, before he

suftcred his

heait to

become

too deeply engaged by the

second, endeavour at least to appreciate with candour and


aft'ection

every excellence which he could discover

in

the

elder.

Upon

such a closer view of the merit which she


in

proved herself
that he

the end to have possessed,

it

is

possible

may have

seen sufficient reason to satisfy his inclin-

ation of acting with

what he
it is

in this case

judged

j;ro/?/7e/?/,

though the occasion,


exercise of a

true, Avas a

singular one for the

lukewarm

principle.

Erasnuis informs us that she was a very young

girl,

who
he

had never quitted her parents and


This, he adds,
liad

sisters

in

the country.

was the more agreeable

to his friend, as

better prospect of forming her to his

own manners

and he even took much pains


'

in her education.*

pist. to

Hut ten.

SIR T.

MORE.

no

As More

lived

may

date this

years of age.

among the Carthusians, we marriage 1507, when he was twenty-seven By this wife Jane, who survived their union
four 3'ears
in virtue

1507.

only about six years, he had issue, Margaret, Elizabeth,


Cecilia,

and John

and

learning, saith

Mr. Roper,

hrought-icp

from
his

their

youth

whom

he would often exhort to


their

take virtue and learning for their meat, and play for
sauce.

Upon

marriage he appears to have taken a house

in Bucklersbury,

and

to

have renewed with assiduity

his

application to the law.*

The year after More's marriage, Erasmus dedicated him his celebrated Praise of iolly, on which occasion,
before to
friend.

to as
his

isoa.

Whitford, the scholar highly

compliments

Bayle, and after him Jortin and others, appears to

be

riiistaken in dating this in saying


it

admired piece two years


as

later'

and

was written under More's roof;

may be

seen by the dedication itsclf.f

Edward IV died in More's infancy the short reigns of Edward V and Richard III folloAved, and aftbrded him in
;

more advanced years a subject

for historical

composition

Henry VII had now


and
his

filled

the throne for twenty-three years,


It requires

death approached.
to

no great sagacity

to discover, that

keep the crown which singular good

fortune had given him, and to accumulate riches, were the


darling objects of this monarch's reign.
'^
* Roper.

The

love of ac-

Jortin, Life Eras. 4'".

i,

35. and

ii,

169, contradicts himself.

30

MEMOIRS OF
in
liis

cumulation appears indeed to have been instinctive


character,

and time discovered that thouiih Cardinal Morendeavours

ton and Bray could not extinguish this propensity, they

were not without

their

in

tempering

it.

P^nip-

son antl Dudley, their ibllowers, whose reputation had no


better basis than their servility, on the contrary, not only

seconded but inflamed

this

humour

in

Henry, and they led

the king to those extremities, which clouded his death with

remorse, and found sutHcient


in assuaging

employment

ior his successor

them.

On
sJelf

wise considerations

Henry had

resolved to unite him-

closely with

Ferdinand and Isabella of Castile and Ar-

ragon, and with the house of the constant and dangerous

Burgundy against France,

enemy of England.
whose eldest

match
Males

was

therefore agreed to, between Arthur ])rince of


;

and Catharine the infanta of Spain


ing married to Philip
ders,

sister be-

duke of Burgundy and


'J'wo

earl of FlanSjiain,

triple alliance

was formed between England,

and Burgimdy, against France.

hundred thousand
ages with any

ducats, the largest portion given for


princess,

many

made

her no

less

acceptable to Henry

VH.

Five months, however, had only claj)scd since the marriage,

when

prince Arthur died


in

and

it

proved, that his

widow was not


and Henry

a state of pregnancy.

The

reasons of
existing,
it

state for preserving the alliance against

France

still

feeling

no inclination

to

ye/////</

the jointure,

was proposed that Arthur's brother -Henry, now prince of

S[R

T.

MORE.

?1

Welles and about tuelve years of age, should be contraet-

ed to Catharine.
terbury,

The good Warham, archbishop of Canto the

acknowledged

king that he thought the step


in the sight of
it,

ndther honourable nor pleasing

God.

l>ut
dis-

Fox, bishop of ^\^inchestcr, urged

and the pope's

pensation surmounted every objection.

It

was no great wonder that the pope readily granted


so

what was

much

for the interest of the


it.

papacy, though
Julius II was an

some

cardinals
to

and divines opposed

enemy

Lewis XII, and wished

to strengthen alliances

against him. Moreover, his consent on this occasion obliged,


as he thought, the succeeding kings of
tain the papal authority, since
title

England

to

main-

from

it

they derived their

to the crown.

But

it is

remarkable that by a mio-htier

decree than that of any temporal power, this act of Julius,


instead of strengthening, occasioned the very extirpation of

the papal dominion in this country.

Upon
But
ed
it

this
is

bull

Henry and Catharine were

contracted.

there

reason to believe, that though he had approv-

as a politician,

Henry VII repented of

this

step be-

fore

he died.

More

incurred

Henry

VII.'s displeasure,

who wanted

to

ruin him.

He had been

elected a burgess (by


tlie

what means

doth not appear) and sat in

parliament in Avhich Henry,

yielding to his ruling passion,

demanded a subsidy

for the

marriage of

his

eldest daughter to the king of Scotland,

32

MEMOIRS OF

rather in a view to his

own cmohinient than

to the rcpayhis ehiUl.

nuMit of
this

tlic

dower whieh he had given with

On

oceasion

More gave an admirable

instance of his in-

tegrity, patriotism,

and courage, by the strength with which Mr.

he ariiued against the demand at that early aoe, undis-

mayed by
at
tiie

the servile senate which surrounded him.

Tyler, a gentleman of the pri\'3'-chamber

who was present

debate, hastened to inform the king that a beardhis

less

boy had frustrated

purpose, and Henry, incensed by

such an opposition to the darling propensity of his mind,

determined to lose no opportunity of revenge.

The means

he employed were worthy of

his avarice

and rapacity, and

unworthy of
ing

his

princely station.

More's poverty exclud-

him from a reasonable prospect of gratiticaiion, the king devised a groundless quarrel with his father, and Sir John

More was imprisoned

in the

Tower

until

he had paid a

fine

of one hundred pounds.

More, shortly
sellor,

after this,

met bishop Fox, a privy-counliis

who

called

him
if

aside, and, pretending great kind-

ness,

promised that

More would be guided by

advice
it

he should soon be restored to the king's favour. terward appeared, that the prelate's design was

But
to

af-

inveigle

More

into a confession of his offence, that a


inflicted

punishment
justice.

might be

upon him with the semblance of


the prudence or good fortune
bishop's chaplain,

More had, however,


this snare.

to,

escape

AMiitford, the

was More's

intimate friend.

On

consulting him, he advised

More by

no means

to follow Fox's counsel,

for

my Lord,

to sei've the

SIR T.

MORE.
own

3S
father'' s death.

king's turn, will not stick to agree to his

More, of course, returned not

to the bishop.*

His abode in England was indeed rendered so unpleasant to

him by the

king's anger, that he meditated

a voyage

abroad, a design which was prevented by the death of

Henry VII
yet, as

in 1509.f

In the interval he lived

in retirement,

might be expected from a mind

like More's,

not

without profiting of the occasion by the cultivation of his


intellectual talents.

We are told
arithmetic,

that he studied the French

language,

history,

geometry, astronomy, and


violin,
ij:

music, and became a practical proficient on the

His chief assistant in these pursuits was, probably,


traordinary
that his wit

his ex-

memory,

to which,

he once expresscth a wish

and learning were equal.

In

his

English woi'ks are preserved four more things which


in his

Mayster Thomas More wrote

youth for

his pastime,

and
first

which therefore belong

to the present chapter.

The

of them hath been supposed to "iiave suggested to the cele-

brated Cowper the idea of his popular tale John Gilpin

but Mr. Hayley, the poet's biographer, disavo\\s the claim,

on grounds which perhaps many readers


ciently satisfactory.

will

deem

suffi-

This piece proves, what an attentive

reader

will, in

perusing our old writers, frequently remark,

that the familiar and colloquial part of our language, be-

ing disused
* Roper

among

those classes which had no ambition of


f Roper.
t More.
J Epist. pref. to Utopia.

and More.
I.

Vol.

^iJiMOIRS
ol'

OF
little

idhieuient or atYectatioii
cliaiiiro.*

novel Ly, Imtii suffered very


in

Our lan^uaoe was then


;

a great degree formed

and

settled

and

it

appears from Ben Jonsoii that More's


his

poems, as well as

prose,

were considered by

his con-

temporaries as models of elegance and purity in language,

though

in general, like all the

compositions of his age, they

are censurable on the score of languor and difi'useness.


three last of these pieces
culiarly

The

recommend themselves more pe-

to our notice

on the present occasion, from the

picture they afford us of the early impressions of More's

mind.

'

9 mcrrg

3iC0t, hon'

a Serjeant uould learn

to

play the Friar

Wise men
Adirm and
Tbat
best
'tis

.ilway

say,

for

a man,

Diligently

For
'J'Lc

to

apply

*
;

business that he can

And

in

no wise

To enterprise
Another faculty.

For he that

will
skill

And

can no

Is never like to theeh.t

Johneon.

} Thrive.

SIR T.

MORE.

35

He
And

that hath

left

The

hosier's craft,

falleth to

making shone.
that shall
fall,

The smith

To
His

painting

thrift is

well-nigh done.

A
To go

black draper

With

white paper,

to writing school,

An
I

old butler
cutler,
fool.

Become a
ween
shall

prove a

And

an old

trot,

That can God wot


Nothing but
kiss the

cup,

With
Till she

her physic
sick

Will keep one

have soused him up.

A man
The ways
to

of law,

That never saw

buy and

sell,

Weening

to rise

1 pray

By merchandise, God speed him well.

A
By
all

merchant eke
will

That

go

seek,

the means he

may,

To

fall in suit

Till he dispute

His money clean away j

56

MEMOIRS OF
Pleading the law

For every straw,


Shall prove a thrifty

man
strife,

With
I cannot

'bate

and
life

But by
tell

my

you whan.

When

an hatter

Will go smatter
la philosophy,

Or

a jjedlar

W^crc a meddler
In theology.

All that ensue

Such

craftes

new,

They

drive so far a cast,

That evermore

They do

therefore
at last.

Beshrew themselves

This thing was tried

And
Here by a

verified

serjeant late
thriftly was,

That

Ere he could pass,

Rapped about

the pate,

While
See

that he would

how he

could
frere
;.

Tn God's name play the

Now

if

you

will

Know how

it fell

Take heed and vou

shall hear.

SIR T.
It

MORE.

37

happed

so

Not long ago

A thrifty man

there died,

An hundred pound Of nobles round.


That had he
laid aside.

His son he would


Should have
this

gold

For

to begin withal

But

to suffice

This child, well thrice

That money was too

small.

Yet
I

ere this

day

have heard say,


certes

That many a man


Been rich

Hath with good


at last

cast

That hath begun with

less.

But
So
His money

this

young man

well

began

to employ,
certainly

That

His policy.

To

see

it

was a joy.

For

lest

some

blast

Might

overcast

His ship, or by mischance,

Men
And

with some wUe

Might him beguile


'minisU his substance,

3S
For
All
to

MEIVroIttS
put out

OF

manner doubt,

He made

a good purvey

For ev'ry whit

By
And

bis

own

wit

took auotber way.

First fair

and well

Thereof

much

deal

He

digg'd

it

iu a pot,

But then he thought


That way was nought

And

there he

left it

not.

So was be

fain

From

thence again

To put

it

in a

cup

And by and by
Covetously

He supped

it

fairly-up.

In his

own

breast
it

He

thought

best

His money to

inclose,

Then

wist

lie

well

Whatever

fell

He

could

it

never lose.

He Of

borrow 'd then


otlur

men

INIoney and merchandi^,

Kcver paid
I'p he laid

it,
it

In

like

manner

wise.

SIR T.
Yet on
tlie

MORE.

39

gear

That Ue would wear

He

rought not what he spent,

So

it

were nice,

As

for the price

Could him not miscontent.

With lusty sport And with resort

Of joly com[)any
In mirtli and play
Full

many

a day

He

lived merrily.

And men bad sworn Some man is born

To have a lucky hour, And so was he,


For such degree

He

gat and such honour.

That without doubt

When

he went out,

A Serjeant well and fair Was ready strait


On him
As soon
as
to wait

on the may'r;

But he doubtless

Of his meekness Hated such pomp and pride And would not go
Companied
so

But drew

lumsell aside.

40

MEMOIRS OF
To
He
gat
Saint Cath'rine

Strait as

a line

him

at a tide,

For devotion

Or promotion
There would he needs abide.

There spent he
Till all

fast

was past
there

And

to

him came

many

To
The

ask their debt

But none could get


value of a penny.

With visage stout He bare it out


Even unto the hard hedge, A month or twain.
Till

he was fain
to pledge.

To

lay his

gown

Then was he

there

In greater fear

Than

ere that

he came thither,
as fain

And would
But that he

Depart again
wist not whither

Then

after this

To

a friend of his
there abode,

He went, and

Whereas he lay
So sick alway

He might

not

come abroadc

SIR T.
It

MORE.

4gt

happed than
merchant

maa
to

That he ow'd money

Of an

officer

Then 'gan enquire

What him

was best to do;

And he
Take an action
I

ans'red
afraid

" Be not

therefore

you

behest,

I shall

him

'rest

And

then care for no more."

I fear

quoth he
not be

It will

For he

will not

come

out.

The

sergeant said

" Be not afraid


It shall

be brought about.

In

many

game
same

Like

to the

Have

I been well in ure,

And
But
if I

for

your sake

Let me be bake

do

this cure."

Thus

part they both,


forth then go'th

And
Apace

this officer

And

tor a

day

AU

his array

He changed

with a

frere.

Vol.

I.

4f
So was he

MEMOIRS OF
ilight

That no

man might
and dook'd

Him

for
I

a frerc deny
le tlopp'd

He

spake and look'd

So religiously.

Yet

in a glass

Ere he would pass

He

toted

and he peer'd
for pride

His heart

Lept

in his side

To

see

how

well he frer'd.

Then
Unto

forth apace

the place

He goelh in God's name To do this deed ;


But now take heed,
For here begins the game.

He drew him And softily


And
a damsel

nigh

Straight at the door he knocL'd

That heard him well


There came and
it

unlock'd.

The

friar said

God
Here

speed

fair

maid

lotlgcth
It
is

such a

man

told
Sir,

me
quoth she,
?

Well

And

if

he do what than

SIR T.
Quoth
he, mistress
doubtless,

MORE.

43

No barm
It 'longeth for

our order

To
But

hurt no man,
as

we can

Every wight

to farther.

With him
Sir,

truly
I.

Fain speak would


quoth she, by

my fai

He is so sick You be not like


To
speak with

him

to-day.

Quoth

he, fair

mai

Yet
This

you pray

much

at

my

de>ire

Vouchsafe to do,

As go him

to
friar

And

say an Austin

Would
And
For

with him speak

matters break

his avail certain.

Quoth

she, I will
still

Stand you here


Till I

come down again.

Up did
And
As she was bid

she

go
so

told

him

to say.

He mistrusting No manner thing


Said, maiden go thy

way

11

MEMOIRS OF
And
fetcli

liim liithcr

That we together

May talk. Adown she go'th. Up she him brought No Lami slie thought
But
it

made some

folk wroth.

This ofBccr This feigned


frcre

When

he was come

aloft

He dopped than And greet this man


Religiously and
ofl.

And
Took him

he again

Riffht fflad

and

fain

there

by the hand,

Tlie friar then said

You
With

be dism.iy'd

trouble I understand.

Indeed, quoth he,


It

hath wiih aie


it is.

Been

better than
Sir,

quoth the

frerc.

Be of good

cheer,

Yet

shall

it

after this.

For Christ

his sake

Look

that

you take

No

thought within your breast

God may turn all. And so he shall


I trust, unto the best.

SIR T.
But
I

MORE.

45

would now
with you,
please,

Commune
la counsel
if

you

Or

elles not,

Of

matters that

Shall set your heart at ease.

Down

went the maid,


said

The merchant

Now say-on gentle


Of
I

frere,

this tiding

That you me bring


long
full sore to hear.

When there
The
friar

was none

But they alone


with
evil

grace

Said, I

'rest thee,

Come on

with me,

And

out he took his mace>

Thou shalt obey Come on thy way


I

have thee in

my

clutch

Thou
For

go'st not hence

all

the pence

The may'r hath

m his pouch.
there,

This merchant

For wrath and

fear

He

waxing-well nigh wood,


Said, whoreson thief,

With

a mischief,

Who hath taught thee thy good

46

MEMOIRS
And with Upon the
lie gave
liis fist

01'

list

him such a blow

That backward down


Abnost in swoon

The

friar

did overthrow.

Yet was

this

man
slain

Well
Lest he the

feardcr than

fri'r

bad

Till with

good raps

And

licavy claps

He duwdc him up

again.

The
A nd
well
lie

friar

took heart
start

And up he
And
Many a

laid about

so tlierc go'th

Between tlicm both


lusty clout.

They
Each

rent and tear


others hair
fast

Vnd clave together

Till with lugging

And with tugging They fell down both at last.


Then on
the ground

Togctlier round

With many a sad stroke They roll and rumble, They


As pigs do
turn and tumble
in a poke.

SIR T.
So long above

MORE.

47

They heave and shove


Together, that at
last

The maid and wife

To

break the

strife

Hied thetn upward

fast.

And
The

v?hen they
captains
lie

spy

Both weltring on the place

The friar's hood They pull'd agood

Adown

about his face.

While he was
Lent him
laid

blind

The wench behind


on the
a joll
the noul
floor

Many
About

With

a great battledoor.

The wife came yet And with her feet


She holpe to keep him down

And with her rock Many a knock


She gave him on the crown.

They

laid his

mace

About

his face for

That he was wood

pain

The
he was

friar frap

Gat many a swap


Till
full

nigh

slain.

48

MEMOIRS OF
Up they bim
And
witli
ill

lift

thrift

Headlong along

tlie stair

Down
And
Commatd

Ihcy liim threw

said adieu,

us to the mat/r.

The
But

friar arose I

suppose
his

Amazed was

head
his ears

He shook
And from
lie

great fears
afled.

thought iiim well

Quoth

he,

now
near,

lost

Is all this cost

Wc be never the
111

must he thceh

That caused me

To make

myself a

frcrc.

Now
End
there

masters

all

Here now
as I

I shall

began,

In anywise
1

would advise

And

counsel ev'ry man,

His own
All

craft use

new

refuse

And

lightly let

them gone
frere
;

Play not the

Now

make good

cheei

And welcome

ev'ry chone.

SIR T.

MORE

49

'

8c

tt)Oct0

of i?ortune to the People.

Mi.VE liigh

estate,

power, and authority


shall

If ye ne

know, eascarch and ye

spy

That

riches, worship, wealth,

and
all

di<,'nity

Joy,

rest,

and peace, and


profit

things finally

That any pleasure or

may come by

To man
Is all at

his confort, aid,

and sustenance,

my

devise

and ordinance.

AYithout

my

favour there

is

nothing won,

Many

a matter have

brought at

last

To good conclude that fondly wixs begun, And many a purpose, bounden sure and With wise provision, I have overcast. Without good hap there may no wit suffice,
Better
'tis

fast

to be fortunate

than wise

And

therefore

have there some


foes,

My
To my
But

deadly

and

written

men been ere this many a book


them
look.

dispraise.
for

And
list

other cause there n'is

me

not friendly on

Thus

like the

fox they fare, that once forsook

The

pleasant grapes, and 'gan for to defy

them

Because he lept and yet could not come by them.

But

let

them

write, their labour

is

in vain

For well ye wot, mirth, honour, and riches

Much

better

is

than penury and pain.


that ling'reth in distress
is

The needy wretch

W ithout my help,
A very
To
all

ever comfortless,

burden, odious and loath


the world,

and eke

to himself both.

Vol.

I.

JM

MEMOIRS OF
Uut he
tliat

by

my
to

favour

may

asccnil

To

njiglity

pow'r and excellent degree,

A commonweal

govern and defend,

O
And

in

how
in

bless'd condition slandeth he,

Himself

honour

au<l felicily,

over that,

may

farther

and cncreasc
and peace.

region whole in joyful

rebt

Now

in this point there

is

no more

to say,
;

Each man hath of himself

the governance

Let every wii^ht then follow his own way.

And

he that out of poverty and luLschancc

List for to live, and will himself eniiance

In wealth and riches, come-forth and wail on

mc

And

he that will be a beggar,

let

him

be.'

'

Cgomnss
art

i^orc to

them who trust in Fortune.

Tiiou (hat

proud of honour, shape, or kin.


this

That hcapest-up

wretched world

its

treasure,

Thy

fingers shriii'd with gold,

thy tawny skin

AV'ith fresh apparel garnish'd out of measure,

And

weenest to have Fortune at thy pleasure

Cast-up thine eye, and look how slipp'ry chance


Illudeth her

men with change and

variance.

Sometime she

look'th as lovely, fair,

and bright

As goodly Venus, mother of Cupid,


She beckcth and she smil'lh on every wight

But

this

chear feigned

may

not long abide,


all

There com'th a cloud, and farewell


Like any serpent she beginn'lh to swell

our pride.

And

look'th as fierce as

any fury of

hellt

SIR T.
Yet
for all that,

MORE.
are fain,

51

we
is

brittle

men

So wretched

our nature and so blind.

As soon

as fortune list to
fair

laugh again

With
Not one

countenance and deceitful mind,


kneel and gape after the wind
;

To crouch and

or twain, but thousami> in a rout.

Like swarming bees, come flickermg her about.

Then

as a bait she bringeth forth her ware,

Silver

and gold, rich pearl and precious


stare

stone,

On

which the amazed people gaze and

And gape
Fortune

therefore as dogs

do

for a bone.

at thenr laugheth,

and

in her throne

Amid

her treasure and wavering riches

Proudly she heaveth as lady and empress.

Fast by her side doth weary Labour stand


Pale Fear
also,

and sorrow

all

bewept,

Disdain and. Hatred on that other hand

Eke

restless

watch, from sleep with travail kept.


as he slept.

His eyes drowsj and looking

Before her standeth Danger and Envy,


Flatt'ry, Deceit, Mischief,

and Tyranny.

About her cometh

all
;

the world to beg

He

asketh land

and He
all

to pass

would bring
;

This toy and that, and

not worth an egg

He would in love prosper above all thing He kneeleth down and would b made a king He forcetli not so he may money have,
;

Tho'

all

the world account

him

for

a knave.

52

MEMOIRS OF
Lo
thus ye sec, divers heads divers wits,

Fortune, alone as divers as they


Unstable, here and there

all,
ilits,

among

tiiem

And
Not
But
to all

at a venture

down

her gifts tliey

fall

Catch whoso

rnnj',

she throweth great and small,

men

as

comcth sun or dew,


all

for the

most part,

among a

few.

And

yet, her brittle gifts long

may

not

last.

He

that she gave

them

looketli

proud and high,


as fast

She whirl'th about and pluck'th away

And And
She

giv'th

them

to another
to

by and by.
continually
slily toss
loss.

thus from

man

man

iis'th to

give and take, and

One man

to

winning of another's

And when siic robbclh one, down go'th his pride. He wecp'th and wail'th and curscth her lull sore. But he who receiv'th it on t'other side
Is glad

and

bless'th her oftentimes therefore.

But

in

a while,

when

she lov'th
gifts

him no more.
they too,

She glideth from him, and her

And he

her curseth as other fools do.

Alas

the foolish people cannot


'void her train
till

cease',

Nor

the}' the
;

harm do

feel.

About her alway


But Lord
!

busily they press

how hcdolh
set
;

think himself

full

well

That may
Tie holdcth fast

once hts haiKi upon her wheel.

but upward as he sty'th.


li'th

She whipp'th her wheel about, and there he

SIR T.
Thus
fell

MORE.

53

Julius from his miglity power,


fell

Thus
Thus
fell

Darius, the worthy king of Perse,

Alexander, the great conqueror.


I

Thus many more than


Her
She

may

well rehearse.
list

Thus double Fortune, when she


slipp'ry
fli'th

reverse

favour from them

that in her trust.


in the dust.

her

way and

li'th

them

She suddenly enhanceth them

aloft
all

And suddenly
The head

mischieveth

the flock,

that late lay easily

and

full toft

Instead of pillows

li'th after

on the block.

And

yet, alas the

most cruel proud mock

The dainty

moutli that ladies kissed have


kiss

She bringeth in the case to

a knave.

In changing of her course the change shcw'th

this,

Up

start'th

a knave and

down

there fall'th a knight,


is,

The beggar
Hatred
This
is

rich
is

and the rich man poor

turned to love, love to dcspight

her sport, thus proveth she her might.


if

Great boast she niak'th

one be by her pow'r


hour.

Wealthy and wretched both within an

Poverty, that of her

gifts will

nothing take,

With merry

cheer looketh ujjon the press

And

seeth

how

Fortune's household go'th to wreck.

Fast by her standeth the wise Socrates,


Aristippus, Pytliagoras, and

many

a leash

Of

old philosophers.

And

eke against the son


in his tun.

Baketh him poor Diogenes

54

JIEMOIRS OF
With her is Bias, whose country lack 'J defence And whilom of their foes stood so in doubt That each man hastily 'gan to carry thence
And asked him, why he nought carried out / bear, quoth he, uU nmc zcilh vie about. Wisdom he meant, not Fortune's brittle tecs,
For nought he counted
his
?

which he might

lecsc.

lleraclitus eke

list

fellowship to keep

With

glad poverty.

Democritus also.

Of which the first can nevtT cease but weep To see how thick the bUnded people go, With labour great, to purcliase cure and
That
other laugh'th to see the loolisli apes
earnestly they

woe.

How

walk about

their japs.*

Of

this

poor sect

it

is

Only

to take that nature


all

common usage, may sustain,

Banishing clean

other surplusage

They be

content and of nothing complain.


is

No
The

niggard eke

of his good so fhin


fold

But they more pleasure have a thousand


secret draughls of nature to bi'hold.

Set Fortune's servants

by them an ye

wull.

That one

is free,

that other ever thrall,


full.
fall.

That one

content, that other never

That one

in surety, t'other like to


to advise

Who
As great

list

them both, perceive he

shall

diff'rence between them, as


felicity.

we

sec

Betwixt wretchedness and

Jt.

SIR T.

MORE.
list,

53

Now
That

have I shew'd ye botb, choose which ye


Stately Fortune or
is

humble poverty
your
fist

to say,

now

li'th it in

To
But

take here bondage or free liberty.


in this point

an ye do

after

me,

Draw ye

to Fortune, labour her to please

f that ye think yourselves too well at ease.

And

first

upon

thee lovely shall she smile

And
Embrace

friendly on thee cast her

wandering eyes,
a while
;

thee in her arms,

and

for

Put thee and keep thee

in fool's paradise
list

And
She

forthwith

all,
it

whatso thou

devise,

will thee grant

liberally perhaps,

But

for all that,

beware of afterclaps.

Reckon you never of her favour

sure.

You may
Or

in clouds as eas'ly trace

an hare,

in dry land cause fishes to endure,

And make
And
As her
to

the burning

fire

his heat to spare,


forfare.

all this

world in compass to

make by

craft or engine stable


is

That of her nature

ever variable.

Serve her day and night, as reverently

Upon
And

thy knees as any servant may,

in conclusion, that

thou shall win thereby

Shall not be worth thy service I dare say.

And

look yet, what she giveth thee to-day

With
Pluck

labour won, she shall haply to-morrow


it

again out of thine hand

wth

sorrow.

56
WLereforc,

MEMOIRS OF
if tliou in surety list to stand,
let

Take

Pov'rty's part and


tiling that

proud Fortune go,


licr

Receive no

cometh from

hand.

Love manner and

virtue, they be only tlio'

Which
Then mayst
Siie

double Fortune
tliou IjoUlly

may
lier

not take thee fro.

defy

turning chance,

can

tliee

neither kinder nor advance.

But an thou

wilt needs

meddle with her

treasure.

Trust not therein and spend

it lib'rally,

Bear thcc not proud, nor take not out of


Build not thine house on high up
IS'one fallctli far but lie

m'.'asurc,

in tlie sky.

who

climbeth high.

Remember The
gifts

nature sent thee hither bare,

of Fortune, count them borrowed ware.'

'

'2DSoma0 i^cit to than


delighteth to proven

nho

seek Fortune.

Wiioso

and assay
lot,

Of

wavering Fortune the uncertain

If that the answer please

you not alway


for I

Blame you not me,


Fortune to trust
I
;

command you
full

not

and ckc
in

well

you wot

have of her no bridle

my

fist, list.

She runneth loose and turneth where she

The

rolling dice in

which your luck doth stand.


be so wroth.

With whose unhappy chance you

You know 3 ourself came never in my hand. Lo in this pond be fish and frogs they both,
Cast in your net, but be you
lief or loath,

Hold you content


For
it is

as Fortune
fishing

list

assign

your own

and not mioe.

SIR T.

MORE.

9f

And though
In

in

one chance Fortune you offend,


thereat but bear a
it

Grudge not

merry

face,

many
But

another she shall


is

amend.

There

no

man

so far out of her grace

lie

sometime hath comfort and solace


so farforth in her favour

Nor none again


That

is full satisfied

with her behaviour.

Fortune

is

stately, solemn,

proud, and high,

And

riches giv'th to have ser\'ice therefore.

The needy beggar


But

catch'th an halfpenny,
less,

Some man a thousand pounds, some


for all that she

some more.

keepeth ever in store

From

ev'ry

man some

parcel of his will,

That he may pray

therefore

and ser^e her

still.

Some man hath good but Some hath

children hath he none,


get none healthy

Some man hath both but he can


all three,

but up to honour's throne

Can be not creep by no manner of stealth. To some she sendeth children, riches, wealth,
Honour, worship, and rev'rence
all his life.

But yet she pincheth him with a shrew 'd

wife.

Then forasmuch

as

it is

Fortune's guise
things that he will aksj

To

grant no

man

all

But, as herself

list

order and devise.


his part divide

Doth ev'ry man

and tax

I counsel ye, each one truss-up

your packs

And take nothing at all, or be content With such reward as Fortune hath you

sent.

Vol.

I.

58

MEMOIRS OF
AU
things which in
tliis

book

that

you

bhiill

read.

Do as jou list, there shall no man you Them to believe as surely as your creed,
But notwilhslandiiig
J durst well swear,

bind

certcs in
s true

my mind
shall

you

them

find

In every point cacli answer by and by

As

are the judgments of astronomy.'

SIR T. MORE.

59

CHAP.
Accession of

II.

Henry VIII.
. .

Consummation of

his

marriage with

Catharine of Arragon.

More
.

re-appears in the world

and

writes
.
.

verses on the coronation.

Anecdote of Emson and Dudley.


. .

Morels attachment
sheriffs.
. . .

to

Erasmus.

He

is

made one of
.
.

the underto

His high estimation as a lawyer.


wife.
.
.

He

replies

Dor-

pins.
vice.

His second

Henry

desires to

engage him
.

in his ser-

He accompanies
.
. .

Tonstall to Flanders.

His
.

letter to

Eras-

mus on

his embassy.
. .

Busleiden and ^gidius.


t)ope.
. . . . .

Mare's

letter to

Jf'arham.

He pleads a causefor the


his first

nighted,

&c
.
. .

His account of

advancement.
. .
.

Henry's earlier
.
.

court.

The
....
mus.

king's intimacy with More.

Luther.
. .
.

Erasmus

persecuted.

More
. . .

expected the reformation.


defends him.
.
.
.

Edtvard Lee attacks Eras. . .

More
. .

Brixius attacks More.


university

Erasmus
,

defends him.

More's
the

letter to the
.

of Oxford.

He
.
.

is
.

made speaker of
Spain.

commons.

His speech on the occasion.


.

Anecdotes of JFolsey and More.


. .

JVolsey wishes to send him to


writes against him,
.
.

Progress of Luther.
.
.

Henry

and

More
mus

is

suspected.

Luther's reply and Boss' rejoinder.


.
.

Eras. .

writes

against Luther.
the

More
.
.

is

exhorted to
is

zvrite.

His

character in

Ciceronianus.
.
. .

He

made

chancellor of the
.
.

duchy of Lancaster.
is

Anecdote of the king and More.


.
. .

More
loss

sent on foreign embassies.

His

sicccess at

Cambray.

. .

His

iyfre, and

letter to his wife,

; ^

60

MEMOIRS OF

r EW

princes have ascended a throne with the

more de-

cided satisfaction of their subjects than did Henry VIII.

In the place of a monarch sinking deeper

in jealousy, avarice,

and
who,

severity, as he

advanced

in years,

men

beheld a prince

young, handsome, accomplished, wealthy, and prodigal


in the

eye of experience, gave flattering promises of

future conduct,

much more
and

in that of popular cnthusiasmi


his father,

The

nobility,

humbled by the policy of

crowded
His

to gain his favour

to share his profusion. Tlie pleasures


his court.

and gallantry of the age were assembled at


father, to

remove him from the knowledge of business, had


in literature.

engaged him

The

proficiency he
lie

made was

no bad prognostic of
learning

his parts,

and the learned.


of youth.

became a lover of His vehemence and ardour


and
were interpreted
titles

(wliich in time degenerated into tyranny)

as the

failings

The contending
in

of

York

and Lancaster were united


our country.

him, and that impartiahty of

administration was expected which had long been


in

unknown
his

In a word, the English rejoiced in the

death of Henry VII, and had great expectations from


son
;

but alas

he lived to disappoint these hopes and prov-

ed a tyrant.

One of
attention,

the

first

measures which engaged the new king's


his

was the celebration of


his

marriage with the

widow of

brother.

Lord Herbert informs us that the

king's graver counsellors told him, the

same reasons which


first

induced Henry VII to the match with Spain,

in tlie

SIR T. MORE.

61

person of Arthur, and after his premature death in young

Henry's
sions

own

person, were

still

in

force

that his preten-

on France made an alliance with that power unne-

cessary, while they rendered the united opposition of Spain

desirable ;

and that there were natural causes of good neighsufficient

bourhood

to

maintain him in friendship with

Maximilian the emperor.

Catharine, moreover, declared herself to be

still

a virgin,

and had given many proofs of her virtuous and amiable


character.

Ferdinand, her father, had given ample com-

mission to his ambassador here, and the lady's presence

would save time as

well as

expence

but should she depart

the kingdom, a large dower must be yearly remitted iiom the country.
ing, this

That

scriptural authority
;

might not be want-

passage was quoted


die

If brethren dwell together


child,

and one of them


shall not
shall

and have no

the wife of the

dead

marry without imto a stranger, her husband's brother go in unto her and take her to him to wife, and perform
an husband's brother unto her
:

the duty of

and

it

shall be

that the frst-born which she beareth shall succeed in the

name

of

his brother

Israel.*

put out of The dispensation formerly obtained from the pope


is

which

dead, that his

name

be not

was

also urged

and

in fine,

about

six

weeks, after

his fa-

ther's death, the

consummation of Henry's marriage took

place with Catharine of Arragon, his brother's widow.

More, now about

thirty years of age, re-appeared in the


* Deuter. xxv.
5.

MEMOIRS OF

general reanimation at the

commencement of

the reign in
;

which he was destined to be so great and so unfortunate

and probabl}'

to greater

advantage than before, from the

cultivation of his character

and

his

acfjuircments in

soli-

tude under the royal displeasure.


called-forth

His classical pen Avas


in

on the coronation, and the poem * he wrote


to

Latin

is

an elegant compliment
satire

Henry and
his

his

queen,

and a severe

on the reign of

rapacious father.

The dedication concludes with


princeps illustriasime,
est,
et,

the cmphatical words vale varus rcgum titulus

qui nevus ac

amatissiine.

When Emson and

Dudley, those

vile ministers

of Henry

VII.'s rapacity, were leading to execution, in consequence

of their attainder by the young king


ty,

in his infant

populari\vith

though at the expence of

his father's

fame. More,

his usual
nit}',
is

archness, though without his accustomed

humaI
doixe

said to have interrogated Dudley, Iiaie not

better than

you ? Dudley

is

said to

have congratulated More

in reply, that

he did not ask forgiveness of Henry VII as

he had been advised to do.f

The character of
yet but
little

the good Erasmus, though


it

it

was as

celebrated, had,

seems,

its

due influence

on the discernment of More.

The acquaintance they had


this

formed at college, cherished by the similarity of their minds

and

their studies,

appears by

time to have lipencd

inlet-

to a strong attachment,
Vol.
ii.

and they now corresponded by


t More.

of

this.

SIR T. .MORE.

63

tcr

whenever they were apart from each other.

When
is saiil,

tlic

great scholar agaui visited


his arrival,

Enghmd

in

1510, he

on

ijio.

to have lodged

with More.

Dr. Jortin and


this

others are, however, mistaken in ascribing to

meeting

the composition of the celebrated Praise of Folly by Eras-

mus

in a week, to divert himself in the

and

his friend, as

we have

akeady seen

preceding chapter.

Soon

after Henry's accession ]\Iore

was appointed one of


office

the under-sheriffs of the city of

London, by which

and was

his profession

he was heard to say that he now gained,

without scruple of conscience, above


at this time

^400

per annum. There


in

no cause of importance

which he washis learning,

not retained on one side or the other; and ybr

wisdom, knozvledge, ^and experience, men had such estimation,

continues Mr. Koper, that bejore he came into the service of


king Henry VIII, at the suit and instance of the English
merchants, he was, by the king's consent, made twice ambassador in certain great causes betwixt them and the Jiierchants

of the Stilyard.

Erasmus,

in his letter to Hutten, also gives

us a high character of the request in which the talents of


his friend
tion.

were held, as well as of

his integrity

and modera-

Thus More, persevered

for the present with assiduity


1512. ^^^^'

in his profession,

and he was twice appointed reader at


in the third

Lincolns-inn,

viz.

and

sixth years of

Henry

VIIL*
But
his heart

was too

disinterested,

and

his

mind too

ex-

* Roper and Dugdale.

M
pansivc, to confine
fession.

MEMOIRS OF
him
rigidly to tlie
in the hitter

duties of his

pro-

Thus

Ave

find

him

of these years en-

listing in the

cause of fiiendship and replying to Dorpius,

a divine of Louvain, who had written against the Praise of


Folly.

While others contented themselves with reviling the


their

good scholar over


first

cups or

in private,

Dorpius was the

ria?

who wrote against Erasmus. He condemned the MoEncomium, as a satirical work in which the author riall

diculed

orders and professions

not excepting even the


that
their

ecclesiastics,

who have commonly pretended


to dissuade

function should serve them for a passport.

He moreover

endeavoured

Erasmus from imdertaking the

New
S*.

Testament, but graciously permitted him to publish

Jerom.

Knowing
inveigled

his

youth and

ductility,

and that he had been

by others

into this attack,

Erasmus

replied with

his usual mildness.

He

clcared-up some points to Dorpius,


his

continued in the true charity of

heart to live on good

terms with him, and even lamented his death.

His friend
epistle,

More
which

also replied to
is

Dorpius
his

in

a long and laboured

preserved

among

Latin works.

In this letter

More proves
poses in

the necessity of studying the Greek language,


;

of which Dorpius had spoken with contempt


civil

and he ex-

language the ignorance, impertinence, and

malevolence of the attack upon Erasmus.


tive influenced Dorpius,

Whatever motreat-

he was highly culpable for

ing of subjects which he understood not, and for being the


first

in such

an attack.

nuilignant

mind and a mean

SIR T.
spirit

MORE.
to

M
condemn
writings which

must have prompted him

he could not imitate, and to endeavour to make the


odious
tion.*

man

who was

affording the

pubhc important

instruc-

More's
their

we have already remarked, survived union only about six years and two or three years
first

wife, as

after her death,f

which brings us to our present period, he

mai'ried Mrs. Alice Middleton, a


ter,

this

widow with one daughby whom he had no children. More used to say of lady, that she was nee bella, iiec puella, and the great-

grandson's account of her and of her mairiage with


are curious.

More

This (he writes) he did not of any concupiscence, for


is

he would often affirm that chastity


wedlock than
in a single hfe
;

more hardly kept

in

but because she might have

care of his children, which were very young, from

whom

of necessity he must be very often absent.

She was of
have heard

good years, of no good favour nor complexion, nor very


rich
it
;

by

disposition very near

and worldly.
his,

reported, he

wooed her

for

a friend of

not once think-

ing to have her himself


that he might speed if

But she wisely answering him, he would speak in his own behalf, tellsaid unto him, with his

ing

liis

friend

what she had

good

liking he

married her, and did that Avhich otherwise he

would perhaps never have thought to have done.


deed her favour, as
*
Jortin.

And

in-

I think,

could not have bewitched, or


+ More.

Vol.

I.

86

MEMOIRS OF
moved any man
to love her.

scarce ever

But yet

she prov-

ed a kind and careful mother-in-law to

his children, as
;

he
to

was alway a most loving father unto them


his

and not only


to

own, but to her daughter

also,

who was married

Mr.

Alin^ton and mother to Sir Giles Alington.'

The same

writer informs us that

More taught

this wife

music with a view to render her

less worldly.

"NVoIsey

was already high


this

in dignity

and More's fame


service.

having by

time attracted Henry's attention, the king

desired the cardinal to engage

him

also

in

his

Wolsey, we are
sion,

told,

acted honestly at least on this occato

and endeavoured

accomplish the king's wish.

He
as-

represented to

More

the importance of his services,

and

sured him (for perhaps then he understood not Henry's


character) that royal bounty could not but repay
liberality.

them with
sta-

More was

not, however, to be prevailed upon,

for the present at least, to

exchange the independent

tion

which

his ability as
;

of a courtier
admitted.*

and the

now gave him, for that excuses he made were for this time
a lawyer

No man

ever strove harder, says Erasmus, to

gain admittance at court, than


it.t

More

strove to

keep out of

He
1516.

accepted, hmvever, a diplomatic appointment in as-

sociation with Cuthbert Tonslall in the year 1516;

and pro-

ceeded with him to Flanders, to meet the ambassadors of


Roper and More.
-f

Epist. to Hutten.

SIR

T.

MORE.
affairs,

m
as

Charles prince of CastUe, on

he informs *

us, of

no small importance. Yet even


though
sion.

this service

appears to have

been protracted longer than was perfectly agreeable to More,


it

produced him, on
this
offer,

his return, the offer of

a pen-

To

perhaps, the king's desire to retain


materially contributed.
after his return,

More

in his service

may have

In a

letter written to

Erasmus soon

and pre-

served in his Latin works,

More

gives a very agreeable ac-

count of

this expedition.

'

Our

embass}' (he writes) for this too, as


interests

all else

which

concerneth me,

you,

hath

proceeded

happily

enough, save that the

affair

was drawn into greater length


For, on leaving

than I either expected or wished.


I looked for

home,

an absence of hardly two months, but consix

sumed above

on that embassy.
was the

Yet a conclusion

suf-

ficiently agreeable

result of this long delay.

But
and

seeing the business on which I went brought to an end,

other matters arising one out of the other which appeared

the

initials

of

still

greater delay (a circumstance never want-

ing on diplomatic occasions), I wrote to the cardinal for

leave to return, and used,

among
I

other friends, the assist3^et left

ance of Pace chiefly on the occasion, who had not


England.

On my way home

met him unexpectedly

at

Gravehnes, and in such a hurry that he could hardly stop to


greet me.

'

This office of ambassador never pleased me.


Utopia.

Neithei*

G8
is it

MEMOIRS OF
likely to suit us

laymen

so well as

it

doth you eccle-

siastics,

who

either

have no wives and children at home, or

find
Jittie

them Avherever you come.


while absent, long to
again,

We, when we have been a be home again on their accounts.


he

And

when an

ecclesiastic sets-out,
will,

may
it

take his

whole family whither he

and maintain them abroad at


at

the expence of kings, wlicn he must have done


at his own.

home
made

But when

am

absent

have two families to

support, one at

home and one

abroad.

The

provision

by the king for those I took with me was sufficiently liyet no regard was had to tliose who must be left at beral
;

home, none of whom, you


feel

will conceive, I

could desire to
hus-

any want during

my

absence, as you

know what a

band, father, and master I wish to be.

Lastly, princes can repay such as


;

you without any


us, this
is

cost to themselves
easy.
,

but with regard to

not so

Nevertheless, on

my

return, a pension

would have

been given
profit,

me by

the king (an offer, in point of honour or


it,

not to be despised), but I have hitherto dechned


I shall

and think

continue to do

so.

For

if I

accept

it,

my

present situation in this city, which I prefer to a higher


one, must either be relinquished, or, which I should be

very

much
;

against, be held with

some

dissatisfaction to our

citizens

with

whom and

their prince, should

any question

arise as to their privileges

(which sometimes occurs), they


cause because I was in-

would think

me

less true to their

debted to the king

for

my

pension.


SIR T.
'

MORE.
in

ay

For the

rest,

some occurrences

my

embassy gave

me

peculiar delight.

And
;

first,

course with Tonstall

than

my long and constant interwhom no man is better informman more


correct in his
I

ed in every elegant attainment, no

conduct or agreeable

in his conversation.

Then

formed a
to treat

friendship with Busleiden,

whose fortune gave him

me

magnificently,

and

his goodness, courteously.

The

ele-

gance of

his house, his excellent

domestic economy, the

monuments of
I take
his
still

antiquity he possesses (in which you

know
and
me.

peculiar delight), lastly, his exquisite library,

more eloquent

breast, completely astonished

But

in the whole of

my

peregrination, nothing

was more

agreeable to

me
;

than the company of your friend ^gidius

of Antwerp

friendly, that

man so learned, merry, modest, and tmly may I perish if I would not freely give a
property only to enjoy constantly his in-

good part of
tercourse."

my

Hieronymus
of the

Buslidius, here alluded to,

an

ecclesiastic

Low

countries, died very soon after this period,


his

and

bequeathed

property to the academy of Louvain, to

erect a college where Latin, Greek,

and Hebrew, should be


illiterate

taught.
divines
in the

This noble institution gave offence to the

who harboured

there, while

Erasmus, a living water


liberality.

desert, extolled

Busleiden's

They

are

vexed, he writes, that three tongues should be in request,

and had rather remain as they


there
is

are, double-tongued

indeed

no teaching a new language


Epirt. 338.

to such old parrots,*

7a

jMEMOiRs or
this letter,

To iEgidius of Antwerp, also commended in More addressed his Utopia, which celebrated
written about this time.
Avill

piece was

In the prefixed epistle the reader

find

an agreeable picture of More's present avocations;

but, he complains, they left


suits.

him no

leisure for literary pur-

The good Warham, choosing rather to retire from public employment than to maintain an unequal contest with
AVolsey, resigned his office of chancellor.

Stapleton hath
this occasion,
is

preserved a letter written to him by

More on

and accompanied by a copy of Utopia, which


More.

interest-

ing on account of the subsequent similar resignation of


It
is

here translated.

Thomas More
*

to

Archbishop Wai^iam.

have ever, good

father,

reckoned yours a happy

lot.

'irst,

while you discharged with so

much

celebrity the of-

fice

of chancellor, and
office,

now

still

hapj)ier,

when, having

re-

signed that

you have betaken yourself

to a desirable

repose in which you

may

live

to

God and

yourself- a re-

pose, I say, not only

more agreeable than were those ocopinion more honourable than were
the worst of men,

cupations, but in
all

my

your honours.
be
in office
;

Many, and sometimes

may
ries

you held the highest, and one which caris


it.

great authority in the execution, and which

obnoxi-

ous to sufficient calumny on the resignation of


it

To

lay

down

then, as

you

did, of

your own accord (the permis-

SIR T.
sion for which I

MORE.
trouble),

7i

know

cost

you much

none but a

modest man would have wished, none but an innocent one


have dared.

You have many duct, and myself am


'

to appreciate

and admire your con-

not

occasion.

Indeed, I

among the least strenuous on this know not, whether most to applaud

your modesty in voluntarily relinquishing so high and splendid an


office,

your greatness in dispising dignity, or the infearless

nocence of your administration in being


sequence.
wise
;

of the con-

Your conduct was


felicity,

certainly

most exxellent and

nor can I express

your singular

how strongly I congratulate this how much I rejoice for you, when I

see you, good father, remote from secular employment, re-

ceding from forensic tumult, enjoying the honourable fame,


the rare glory, of your well administered
office
;

and

Avell-resigned
life,

and, joyful in the consciousness of your past


letters

calmly devoting your remaining time to


sophy.

and philo-

'

My

own comparative misery makes me


this

think daily

more and more of


I
is

your happy condition. For, although

have no occupations worth the naming, yet, as weakness


easily

overcome,

I ara so busy, that I

have neither time

to

pay

letter

my respects to you in for my omission. Thus

person, nor to apologize by


I

have hardly time to write


this

you

this,

with a view of recommending to your favour

ill-finished httle

book, which a too partial friend of Antit

werp, precipitated as

was rather than polished, thought

73

MEMOIRS OF
it

worthy of the press and printed


Although
I

without

my

knowledge.

think

it

unworthy of your

dignity, experience,

and

learning, yet, satisfied as I

am

of your kindness

and
and

candour toward every endeavour, and having individually


felt

your goodness,

have the boldness to send


little

it

you
its

hope, tiiough the work prove of


shall find

worth,

author

some favour with you.

'

Farewell most worthy prelate.'

An
More

incident not long afterward occurred, which drove


into the distinction he

had

so studiously avoided.

A
and

valuable ship of the pope's coming into Southampton,

being claimed as prize by Henry Vlil, the legate applied


to the king, that his master

might have counsel assigned


kingdom, to defend
his
it

him learned
cause
;

in the laws of this

and, as his majesty was himself a great civilian,

was requested that the cause might be tried publicly, and More had the honour of being chosen, as in his presence.
the propcrest lawyer of the time, to be counsel for the

pope, and to report the arguments in Latin to the legate,

hearing of the cause was appointed before the chancellor


in the

and the judges


ed with so

star-chamber.

Our advocate pleadwas

much

learning

and

success, that not only

the ship restored to the pope, but himself, adds Mr. Roper,

among

all the hearers,

for

his upright

and commendable de-

meanour therein

so greatly

renowned, that for no entreaty


to

would the king from henceforth he induced any longer


bear his service.

for-

SJR T.

MORE.

73

Having no
first

better place at that time vacant,

Henry

at
af-

made More Master of

the Requests,

and a month

terward knighted him and

made him a

privy-counsellor.

The precise date of these honours is not very certain, but we may safely limit them to the year 1517* Weston, treasurer of the exchequer, dying some time afterward, the
king without sollicitation gave that place also to More.-f-

1517.

Of

his first

advancement the knight afterward wrote


is

this

curious account in a letter to bishop Fisher, which


translated from Stapleton.

here

'

came most
to this

unwillingly to court, as every one


in

knowme.
one

eth,

and as the king himself sometimes

joke

tells

And

day

seem

to sit as

awkwardly

there, as

who never rode


though
fable
I

before sitteth in a saddle.

But our

prince,

am

far

from being
all,

in his especial favour,

is

so afso

and kind

to

that every one, let

him be ever

diffident, findeth

some reason

or other for imagining he

loveth

him

selves that

London matrons persuade them_ our Lady's image smileth upon them as they
just as our
it.

pray before

am

neither so fortunate as in reality to

perceive such favourable tokens, nor of so sanguine a tem-

perament

as even to flatter myself that I

do so

yet such

are his majesty's virtue

and

learning,

and such

his daily in-

creasing industry, that seeing

him the more and more adhang heavily upon me.'


f Roper.

vance

in

good and

truly royal accomplishments, I the less


life

and

less feel this

court

to

* Lord Herbert.

Vol.

74.

MEMOIRS OF

Nor was More

singular in this his favourable opinion of

Henry's earlier court, although royal favour

may

be sup-

posed to have had some influence upon

his

judgment.

The

fragrance of her honourable fame, saith Erasmus, smellcth

sweetly everywhere

for she

hath a king possessing every

worthy, princely attribute, a queen his fellow, and a

num-

ber of worthy, learned, sedate, and discreet subjects.*

Wc
find

arc

now

therefore to behold

More

in

a very dilferent

situation from those in

which

Ave lately

viewed him.

We

him taken from

his practice as

a lawyer, and from the

condition of a private gentleman, to


state
for

become an

officer of

and the favourite of a king

taken

we may

truly say,

he certainly acquiesced

in the royal favour, rather in

obedience to the king than to gratify any passion of his

own

for

power and grandeur.


and

His simplicit}' of heart proof princes and their


already sur-

babh' gave him a


intrigues,
it

disrelish for the courts


is

possible that he

may have

mised from Henry's character the j)robable inconstancy of


his favour.

Under every advancement, we


life.

shall find that

he

still

preserved the plainness and integrity which distin-

tinguishcd him in private

superior station served


;

but for a time to

call-forth his superior talents

and

in the

end

it

displayed his superiority of character under the se-

veiest of

human
first

trials.

In the

years of his promotion, ^ve are told

Henry

was

in the habit of frequently sending for Sir


* Epist. to Guilford.

Thomas and

SIR T.

MORE,
his closet

75

confening with him in private in

on astronomy,
af-

geometry, divinity, and other subjects, as well as on


fairs

of state.

They sometimes even ascended


the heavenly bodies
3'ears

together in

the night to the top of the house to observe, as well as

converse
early

of,

* a trait worthy of the


strik-

and more innocent

of Henry VIII, and a

ing contrast to his subsequent character.

The

kino- holds

More
fereth
ters,

in

such intimacy, saith Erasmus, that he never sufto leave

him

him

if

he wanteth him in serious mat;

he hath not a better adviser


festive

if to

relax his mind, he

knoweth not a more

companion.f

The company of
in the evening

Sir

Thomas was
to he

indeed,

it

seems, so
for

agreeable, that the king and

queen frequently sent

him

about

this time,
far,

merry with them, saith

Mr. Roper.
ciple

This went so

that the affectionate prinin his

which the knight retained


}nij

advancement, I must

chat ziith

wife

and

prattle with

my

children, %

was ia

danger of usurpation.
taining to the king

His conversation became so enterin

and queen, that he could not once


to

month obtain permission


mily
;

spend an evening with

his fa-

nor could he be absent from the court two days in


for.

succession without being called

More, however,

just-

ly considered the claims of his family in this particular as

superior to those of his sovereign.

Restraining, therefore,

the natural vivacity of his disposition, he caused his conversation in the roj'al presence to
* Roper.

become by degrees
% Utopia.

less

f Epist. to Hutten.

76

iAlEMOIRS
less attractive
;

OF
M'as, that his

and

and

tlie

consequence

time

became more
Leo

his

own.*
time everywhere pubUshing his imlulpretence, of waging war with
S'.

was at

this

gciiccs, to raise

money under

the Turks say some, of bui ding

Peter's church say others.

The dominicans being employed by him in Germany on this occasion, the augustinians, who pretended that the office

belonged to them, were

irritated.

Martin Luther, pro-

fessor of divinity at AVittenberg,


others,

and an augustinian, among


Finding
it,

examined
full

this doctrine

of indulgences.
gifted

as he thought,

of

error,

and being

by nature with

an independence and intrepidity of character which would


not allow him on such an occasion to remain a
active spectator, he publicly refuted
it

silent or in-

in 1517.

From

this

time,

Erasmus began

to

be most maliciously

persecuted by the ecclesiastics.


that his bold

They loudly complained


monks,
their pious

and

free censures of the

grimaces and superstitious devotions, had opened the


for Luther.

way

Erasmus, they

said, laid the egg,

and Luther

hatched

it.

The

religious disputes

which opened the scene

produced

religious

wars and cruel persecutions, a state of


More's mild and gentle friend,

affairs sufficiently afflicting to

who

often complained that his endeavours to reconcile the

opposite parties, only drew


both.-j'

upon him

the resentment of
to

The minorite
* Roper.

brethren, he said, deserved


t
Jortin.

be

SIR T.

MORE.

77

complimented

as wits for their joke, but he laid. a hen's


different bii'd.*

egg

and Luther hatched a yery

With

his strong

attachment to the church of Rome,

it

-<

seems from the following anecdote that Sir Tliomas expected one day the success of the reformation
in this country,

and perhaps

his

knowledge of Henry's temper contributed


Mr. Roper
says,

to the surmise.

when he commended

to

More

the

happy

estate of this realm,

which had so catholic


his face, so virtuous

a prince that no heretic dared to shew

and learned a

clergy, so grave

and sound a
in

nobility,

and

so loving, obedient subjects,


replied, truth
it
is

all

one

faith

the

knight

indeed son
;

Roper, and even exceeded

him

in

commendation

and yet son Roper, he continued,


we seem
to sit

J pray God

that some of us, as high as

upon

the mountains, treading heretics under our feet like ants, live

not the day that we would gladly he at league and composition with them, to let
selves, so

them have their churches quietly


let

to themr-

that they would be contented to

us have ours

quietly to ourselves.

Edward Lee began


mus, and to

also

about

this

time to attack Eras-

stir-up the divines against him.


little

He

not only

treated the good scholar as one of

erudition

and no
;.

judgment, but as an heretic and an enemy to the church

and did

all

he could to run him

down and

ruin him.

Eras-

mus

in return

hath often said, the earth never produced an


foolish,

animal more vain, arrogant, scurrilous, ignorant,


* Zpitt. 719-

7S

MEMOIRS OF
tl)au

and malicious,
court,

Lee.

Yet

this

man was advanced


to

at

lie was chaplain

and ahnoner

Henry VIII, was

afterward employed by the king on several embassies, and


lastly,

was made archbishop of York.


though a constant friend to Lee, was much

IVIore,
1^19-

dis-

pleased at his quarrelling with Erasmus.

In 1519, and
Lee, which arc
his life

subsequent years, he wrote three


reprintetl

letters to

by Dr. Jortin

in the

appendix to

of Eras-

mus.

They inform

us that he would have dissuaded

Lee

from publishing
sorry

his censures

of his friend, that he was very


that
lie

when they were published,


Erasmus
interest

thought him far


ability as in

inferior to

as well in

knowledge and

credit

and

with the learned world, and that he

judged

this exploit

would draw infamy and contempt upon

the writer, and even an

odium upon the English.

Thus

our Lee (adds the Doctor), who, had he kept the fool within doors,

might have passed

for a tolerable divine, chose


it

rather to purchase renown, such as

was, by heading the


all re-

clamorous half-learned censurers of Erasmus and of


formations.

Among

those indeed he might hope to


persons,

make
it is

a figure though not

among more eminent


sect,

and

no wonder that an ambitious man should choose rather


be the leader of a paltry
than to be
lost

to

among scholars

of the second or third class.

Lee was ever an enemy


tolled, as

to the reformation,

and

is

ex-

might have been expected, by Wood, Stapleton,

SIR T.

MORE.

79

More's great-grandson, and others.


a juster account of him.

Bishop Burnet gives us

Soon

after this vindication of his friend, Sir

Thomas was
Rabe-

himself attacked.
lais calls

Brixius, or, as his contemporary

him, de Brie, had written a

poem

in

1513, intituled

Chordigera, describing an action of that year between the

English ship Regent and the French ship

la Cordeliere.

As
in-

he had given a

false

account of the engagement, and

sulted and calumniated the English,

More wrote

several

epigrams in derision of the poem.


aftront,

Brixius, picqued at the

revenged himself by an elegy which he intituled


all

Antimoi-us, in which he severely censured

the faults
;

which he thought he had found


this

in the

poems of More
*^

but

1520.

piece was not published

till

1520, and then at Paris in

compliance with the wishes of the author s friends.

Erasmus,
to

in

a very good

letter to Brixius, civil]}^

though
English

freely, insinuated to

him that he was a very


first

child

compared

More, and launched out as usual

in praise of his

friend.f-

More
that, to
it,

at

despised the poem, and wrote to


in wliich

Erasmus
he held

prove to the world the contempt


it
it

he had a design of reprinting

himself. J
;

He,

however, afterward wrote an answer to

Avhich

was no

sooner puljlished, than he received a letter from Erasmus,


wisely exhorting him to pass the matter in silent contempt,
for that alone Sir
*

was the conduct which the attack deserved.


his error, and, following his friend's
115
>

Thomas soon saw


La
Moiinoye, Menagi^n
iii.

+ Epist. 511.

% Latin works.

80

MEMOIRS or

advice, he immediately recalled the publication, so that

very few copies of

it

escaped into the world.*

Yet Erasgood

mus, although he was capable of giving


advice, had certainly himself too
lii-lity

his friend this

nmch

of this very sensi-

^.

'

when attacked by malicious and inconsiderable adSuch characters require a friend to advise them, versaries.
leave these

men

to

themselves, they cannot live in their


live

own
all,

jp*

writings,

why should they


terrible

in

yours ? and

it is,

after

no such

matter to be misrepresented as a dunce,

when time and

truth

must put

folly to tlight.-f-

To

this

period also.

Wood

ascribes the proof which

More

gave of

his zeal for learning,

by

his letter to the university i\fter

of Oxford on the study of Greek.

Grocyn came
was manifest-

thither to teach Greek, a serious opposition

ed to

his progress.

faction of the students, denominat-

ing themselves Trojans, and


Paris,
(Sec.

who had

their

Priam, Hector,

declared themselves enemies to what they called

the

new

learning,

and one of them had the impudence

to

attack the Greeks trom the university pulpit.

More wrote
a seminary,
chancellor

a well-timed

letter

;{:

in

Latin to the universit3> and observinferior as

ed that even Cambridge, ever her

promoted the study of Greek

that her

own

Warham, Cardinal Wolsey, nay


encourage
it;

the king himself, wished to


it

and that therefore

was probable these

ri-

diculous Trojans, the enemies of useful learning, would in

the end have the old proverb applied to themselves, sero sa-

inunt Phryges.
* More.

t See

Jortin.

J Printed

at

Oxford

in 4'.

l633.

sm

T.

MORE.

81
1^23.

In the parliament holden at Blackfriars in the year 1523,


Sir

Thomas More was chosen

speaker.
office,

He was

very desir-

ous of being excused from

this

and addressed the

king to that effect in a speecli which hath not been preserved.*

His remonstrance, however, proving ineffectual,

he was obliged to comply, and he made the following speech

upon the occasion, preserved by Mr. Roper, which


the knight, and of the

is

here

presented to the reader as a specimen of the eloquence of

manner of the

age.

Sir Thomas Mare's Speech on being appointed Speaker.

'

Since I perceive, most redoubted sovereign, that

it

standeth not with your pleasure to reform this election and

cause

it

to

be changed, but have by the mouth of the most

reverend father in
cellor,

God my

lord legate,

your highness' chan-

thereunto given your royal assent, and have of your

benignity' determined, far

above

thai I

may
;

bear, to enable

me, and

for this office to repute

me, meet

rather than

you

should seem unto your


unfit choice, I

commons

that they
shall

had made an
be ready, obe-

am

therefore

and alway

diently to conform myself to the accomplishment of your


highness' pleasure

and commandment.
beseeching your most noble magrace's favour, before 1 far-

'

In most humble

Avise

jesty, that I

may, with your

ther enter thereinto,

make my humble
* Roper.

petition for

two low-

Vol.

I.

^a
Iv petitions; the

MEMOIRS OF
one
piiviitely

concerning myself, the other

the whole asscniljjy of your conunon-housc.

'

For myself, gracious sovereign, that


is

if it

mishap me,

in

anything hereafter that

on

liie

behalf of your com-

xnons in your high presence to be declared, to mistake

my
misit

message, and,

in

tiie

lack of good

utterance, by

my

rehearsal to pervert or impair their prudent instructions,

may

then like your most noble

m^ijest}',

of your aliundant

grace, with the eye of your

wonted

pity, to

pardon

my

simpleness; giving

me

leave to repair again to the

commonon
their
in-

house, and there to confer with them, and to take their substantial advice,

what things and

in

whatwise

I shall

behalf utter and speak before your noble grace, to the


tent their prudent devices and affairs be not, by

my
me

simpleit

ness and folly, hindered or impaired.

Which

thing, if
if

should so happen, as

it

were

like to

mishappen
oversight,
it

your

gracious benignity relieved not


fail

my

could not

to be, during
heart.

my

life,

a perpetual grudge and heaviness


whereof, in

to

my

The help and remedy


is,

manner
first

afore

remembered,

my

gracious sovereign,

my

low-

ly suit

and humble

petition unto

your noble grace.

'

My

other humble request, most excellent prince,


as

is

this.

Forsomuch

there be of your connnons, here


for

by

your high commandment assembled


great number,

your parliament, a

who

are, after

your accustomed manner, apto entreat

pointed

in the

common-house

and advise of the

common

ati'airs

among

tliemselves apart;

and

albeit,

most

SIR T.

MORE.

83

dear leige lord, that according to your prudent advice by

your honourable writs everywhere declared, there hath been


as

due diligence used

in sending-up to

your highness' court

of parliament the most discreet persons out of every quarter that


it is

men

could esteem most meet thereunto, whereby


is

not to be doubted that there


right wise, meet,

a very substantial as;

sembly of

and

politic persons

yet,

most

virtuous prince, since

every

every

man man

wise alike,

among so many wise men neither is nor among so many alike well witty
and
it

alike well spoken,

often

happeneth that
polished
see

likewise as

speech, so

much folly is uttered with painted many boisterous and rude in language
;

deep
also

indeed and give right substantial counsel


in matters of great

and since

importance the mind

is

so often occu-

pied in the matter that a

man

rather studieth

what

to say

than how, by reason whereof the wisest

man and
is

best
fer-

spoken

in

a whole country fortuneth, while his mind

vent in the matter, somewhat to speak in suchwise, as he

would afterward wish to have been uttered otherwise, and yet no worse will had he when he spake it, than he had

when he would
liament

so gladly change

it

therefore,

most

graci-

ous sovereign, considering that in your high court of paris

nothing treated but matter of weight and imit

portance concerning your realm and your royal estate,


could not
fail

to let

and put

to silence

from the

givino-

of

their advice

and counsel many of

3'our discreet
affairs,

commons,

to ihe great hinderance of the

common

except that

exeiy one of your

commons were

utterly discharged of all

81

MEMOIRS OF
and
fears,

cloubts
to

how anything

that

it

should happen them


'

speak should happen of your higlniess to be taken.

'

And

in this point,

though your well-known

an<l

proved
is thtr

benignity putteth every

man

in

good hope, yet such

weight of the matter, such

is

the reverend dread that the

timorous hearts of 3'our natural subjects conceive toward-

your

iiigh nrajesty,

our most redoubted king and undoubted

sovereign, that they cannot in this point


tisHed, exce])t

fmd themselves

stv-

your gracious bounty, therein declared, put

away

the scruple of their timorous minds, and animate and

encourage them and put them out of doubt.

'

It

may

therefore, like

your most abundant grace, our


to give
all

most benign and godly king,

your conmions

here assembled your most gracious licence and pardon, freely,

without doubt of your dreadful displeasure, every

man

to discharge his conscience,

and boldly,

in

every thing in-

cident

among

us, to declare his advice.

And, whatsoever
your majesty of

liaj)i)en

any man to

say, that

it

may
all

like
in

your inestimable goodness to take


preting every man's words,

good part;

inter-

how cunningly

soever they be
profit

couched, to proceed yet of good zeal toward the

of

your realm and honour of your royal person

the prosper-

ous estate and preservation whereof, most excellent sovereign,


is

the thing which


to our

we

all,

your loving subjects, acallegi-

cordmg

most bounden duty, of our natural


for.'

ance, most highly desire and pray

SIR
It
is

T.

MORE.

85

probable that

tlie

design of the knight in this speech

was

to

remonstrate against the


his

known haughtiness
;

Avilh

which Henry VIII treated


Jour of the profoundest

parhaments

and, under co-

awe and

veneration, to reprove the

sovereign for his arbitrary restraint on debate.

In this point
first

of view, the speaker manifesteth more dexterity than at


sight

may appear

a compUance with his haughty humour'


being the only manner in which

in this submissive language,

the king could be reproved or thwarted with a hope of success.*

Of this
ed

parliament the following anecdote

is

related.

Wol-

sey, at this time in the zenith of his greatness,


his displeasure,

had expresssaid or
in

that no sooner

was anything
it

done

in the

house of commons than

was blown abroad

every alehouse.

When
to

the large subsidy was afterward detiie

manded, the

cardinal; fearing opposition fi'om

com-

mons, determined

be present in their house at the time

the motion should be made.


in that house, Avhether
his lords only, or

A debate in

consequence arose

he should be received with a fbw of

with the whole number.


;

The majority of

the house were of the former opinion served


"\ntii

but the speaker ob-

his usual archness,

forasmuch as my lord car-

dinal lately laid to our charges the lightness of our tongues

for things uttered out of

this house, it shall not

in

my mind
seal too

be amiss to receive him with all his pomp, with his maces, his
pillarSf pollaxes, his crosses, his hat,

and the great

the intent that if he find the like fault with us hereafter,


* Warner.

86

MEMOIRS OF
he the bolder from ourselves to lay the blame, on those

we may

whom

his

grace bringeth hither with him.

Wolsey was received accordingly, and spoke


nity
to

witli

solem-

on the necessity of the grant. The commons heard him


in silence,

an end

and then made no

reply.

lie address-

ed himself to some of the members in particular, but received

no answer,

for

they had resolved to communicate

with him through their speaker only.

At

last

he demanded
Jirst

an answer of the speaker, who, continues Kopcr,

re-

verently on his knees excusing the silence of the house, abash-

ed at the presence of so noble a personage able to amaze the


wisest in a realm,

and afterward by many probable arguments


to

proving that Jor them

make answer

it

was

neit^ier expedient,

nor agreeable with the ancient liberty of the house, in conclusion

for himself shewed, that though they had

all

with their

voices trusted him, yet except every one


to his

of them could put in^


weighty a mat-

head of their several


to

wits, he alone in so

ter

was unft

make

his

grace answer.

ISIore

seconded the subsidy from the beginning,* and

this

farce

was played only upon the insolence of the cardinal who, adds Mr. Rojier, displeased with Sir Thomas More who
had not
in
this

parliament in

all

things satisfied his desire,

suddenly arose and departed.

A
lery

few days aftei-ward, Sir

Thomas being
to

in

Wolsey's gal-

at ^^ hitehall, the Utter said


* Lord Herbert.

him, would

God you

SIR T.

MORE.
I made
replied
ijoii

87

had been

at

Home Mr. More


so

zi-hen too,

speaker.
;

Your

grace not offended,


gallen/ mij lord,
court.^

would I

More

like this

much

better than

your gallery at Hampton-

This perhaps broke-ofi" a quarrel for the time, but

the fact was, as Erasmus Justly observes in one of his letters,

that the cardinal feared the knight

more than he loved

him.

He
dor.

gave a proof of

this

afterward,

by

his

endeavour

to

persuade the king to send Sir Thomas to Spain as ambassa-

When Henry

proposed

it

to

More, the knight, pre-

possessed, says Mr.


thither

Roper, that the king by sending him


his grave,

would send him to

represented to his

ma-

jesty

how

unlikely he was to render him acceptable service

there, yet

was ready as

in

duty bound to
his
life.

fulfil his

pleasure,

though at the ex pence of

It

is

not our pleasure

Mr. More
we

to

do you hurt, but

to

do you good would we be

glad, replied IJenry, in

the better language of his heart

will therefore for this purpose devise

upon some other, and

employ your service otherwise.

In the meantime the intrepid Luther, jiursuing the career


which, as

we have

seen, he

had commenced

in 1517,

had

detected the corruption of the court ol Rome, her obstinacy


in

adiiering to established error,

and her inditJerence

to

truth,

and tiom uttering some doubts


last

as to the divine oiiginal

of the papal authority, he at


tions

shook the firmest founda-

upon which

the wealth and


Roper.

power of the church were

88

MEMOIRS OF
Henry
treatise

established.

\'lll, in addition to his rigorous acts


tioni invading his
J.utiier
title

lor preventing lutheranism

rcahii, liad

pul)hshcil a

against

wiiich obtained

him

Irom

tlic

pope the well-known

Defender of the faith.

From More's supposed instrunjentality in this publication, wc shall iind that he was afterward accused as the cause of Henry putting a sword into the pope's hand to fight against himself. But the knight, we shall also find from his own
letters,

pleaded

?iot

guilty

to

this

accusation.

He owns

that,

by the

king's aj)iK)intnent,

and by consent of the

writers,

he was a sorter-out and placer of the principal con;

tents of the tract

but

it

seems that More

in fact advised

Henry

to insist less strenuously than he did on the pope's

authority, from a foresight perhaps of the inconstancy of

the monarch's character.

Luther replied to Henr}^ and, Mith


treated his majesty as a
liar

his usual bluntness,

and a blasphemer.

rejoinder

appeared

in the

year 1523, under the

name

A\ illiam

Ross,
is

which hath been generally ascribed

to Sir

ThonMS, and

reprinted as his production in his Latin works.

The

writer,

whoever he ma^' have been, not only endeavoured

to refute

the arguments, but also followed in a blameablc degree the


too prevailing custom of the time in aiming to ctjual the abuse, of his adversary.
est

The soundest

sense

and the

strong-

argument, Avhen thus disfigured by the rancour of party

spirit,

and even

scurrility,

not only lose the weight they


Avill

naturally possess, but their tendency

generally be found

SIR T.

MORE.

89

to be, that they chiefly disgust the reader

by the deformity

of the picture with which they present him.

The good Erasmus, not


of a martyr, probably

gifted

by nature with the courage

felt his

worldly interests too

much

at

stake to allow him to enter early and with freedom into


these controversies.

The importunate

solicitations of the
last,

Roman
field

party induced him, however, at


his dissertation

to take the

by the publication of
yet

on

freewill.

This

piece was written with the good scholar's usutd moderation

and candour

it

produced a reply from Luther

in

se-

vere strain of ridicule and invective, in his treatise


arbitrio.

De

servo

Erasmus was, with

sufficient reason,

much

pro-

voked at a treatment so rude and unmerited, which drew


from him in rejoinder the
first

part of his Hyperaspistes.

More's strong attachment to the church of Rome, ren- dered him of course no tiiend to the great cause.
a letter* of his to Erasmus in 1525, containing

We

have
spite
1525.

much

and acrimony against the reformers, with pressing exhortations to

him

to publish the last-mentioned work.

And two
for read-

1597

years later,

we have bishop Tonstal's


king,

licence to

him

ing heretical books, and an exhortation to him to imitate


the great example of his

by employing

his leisure in

answering them.

That

this

advice was not in vain,

we have

pretty voluminous testimonies in IMore's published works

but

we

will

advert more fully to the subject of his writino-s

in our last chapter.


* Erasm. Epist. 334.

Vol.

I.

90

MEMOIRS OF
The
celebrated Ciceronianus of Erasmus, one
ot"

the

most

ingenious and lively of his productions, in Avhich he agree-

ably
1523.

rallies

certain Italian purists


to be

who

scrupled to use any


in 1528.
is

word or phrase not


'J'he

Ibund in Cicero, came out

author's account of his friend

More

at this time

in-

terestinfT.

'

Fateor ingeniuni fclicissimc natum, et quod


si

nihil

nou
Civ-

potuisset efticerc

totum

his studiis

vacare

licuisset.

terum,

iilo

pucro, vix tenuis odor literaturae mclioris denii-

grarat in Angliam.

Deindc parentum auctoritas ad


;

leges

ejus gentis discendas, quibus nihil illiteratius, adcgit


in causis agendis exercitatus, hinc

mox

ad reipublicie numia vo-

catus,
stu(ha.

vix succisivis horis respicere potuit ad eloquentiae

Tandem

in regiam pertractus, et regni

regiorumque
(juam

negotiorum undis immcrsus, magis aniare


colere.
gis vergit

j)otcst studia

Et tamen dicendi genus quod assecjuutus

est,

ma-

ad Isocraticam structuram ac dialecticam

subtilij

tatem,

quam ad

I'usum illud Ciceronianaj dictionis tlumcn


]\I.

quanK|uani urbanitatc nihilo

TuUio

inlierior est.

Quo-

niam autem adolescens


bendis,

tliu

versatus est in poematibus scri-

poetam agnoscas

et in oratione prosa.'

About

this

time died Sir Richard Wingfield, in whose


solicitation, the

room, without

king

made

Sir

Thomas More
he was somehis

chancellor of the duchy of Lancaster.*

The knight indeed

grew into such favour

Avith

his majesty, that

times honoured with a


*'

visit

from the king at Chelsea,

Roper and Eratmui.

SIR T.

MORE.

91

present residence, without previous notice.

One day Henry


walk-

came
ed in

thither to dinner unexpectedly,


iVlore's

and

after dinner

garden

for

an hour, with one arm round the

knight's neck.

'

As soon

as his grace

was gone,

relates

Mr. Roper,

I re-

joicing thereat, said

to Sir

Thomas

Alore,

how happy he
Wolsey,

was

whom
I

the king had so familiarly entertained as I never


to

had seen him do

any

other, except cardinal

whom
indeed,

saw

his

grace walk once with arm in arm.

I thank
as

our Lord, son, quoth he, IJind his grace

my

very good lord

and I

believe he doth as singularly favour


this

me

any
tell

subject within
thee,

realm.

Ilowbeit son. Roper,

I may

I have no

cause to be proud thereof ; for, if


castle in

my head

would win him a


twixt us)
it

France
to go.'

(for

then was there war be-

should not fail

This anecdote proves that

More

already understood Henry's character well.

While

Sir

Thomas was

chancellor of the duchy, he Avas

twice employed in foreign embassies in commission with

Wolsey, once to the emperor


in France.*

Cliarles in Flanders,

and again
I029.

In 1529 he was appointed to accompany Cuth-

bert Tonstall to

Cambray, where he

assisted in tlie tieaty

called after that place .-f*

Here, Mr. Roper informs us, the knight worthily haiidled


himself, procuring in our league far

more

benefits

unto this

realm, than at that time by the king or his council, zvas thought
Roper. t Lord Herbert.

N2

92
possible to be compassed.
in
lliis

MEMOIRS OF

And

it

was

for

liis

good

services

exj^cditiou, tlie son-in-law

proceeds to inform us,

that the king,


cellor,

when he

afterwiird

made

Sir

Tliomas chan-

caused the duke of Norfolk to declare publicly, how


indebted to him.

much Endand was

On

his

return from Can\bray, Sir

Thomas rode

directly

to the king at the court at \\'oodstock.

Here information

was brought him that a part of


sea,

his

dwelling-house at Chelfire,

and

all

his barns, full

of com, were ccjnsumed by


his

and that the barns of some of


stro3-ed also.

near neighbours were dehis

The

letter

he wrote to

lady on this occait

sion

is

preserved in his English works, and with

we

will

conclude the present chapter.

The former

part of

it is

per-

haps addressed to her covetous disposition, while the


part affords a most worthy instance of his
lence.

latter

own benevo-

Sir

Thomas

to

Lady More.
I

'

Mistress Alice, in
to you.
loss

my
I

most heartywise

recommend
son Heron
with
all
it

me

And

whereas

am

informed by

my

of the

of our barns and our neighbours'

also,

the corn that was therein, albeit (saving God's pleasure)


is

great pity of so

much good

corn

lost,

yet since

it

hath

liked

him

to send us such a chance,

we must and
lost

are bound-

en, not only to be content, but also to be glad of his visitation.

He

sent us

all

that
it

we have
away

and since he hath

by such a chance taken

again, his pleasure be tul-

SIR T.
filled
!

MORE.
it

93
in

Let us never grudge thereat, but take

good

worth, and heartily thank him, as well for adversity as for


prosperity.

'

And

peradventure

we have more cause


;

to thank liim

for our loss than for our winning

for his

wisdom better
Therefore
the household

seeth what
I pray

is

good

for us than

we do

ourselves.
all

you be of good cheer, and take and

with you to church, and there thank God, both for that

he hath given
for that

us,

for that he hath taken

from

us,

and

he hath

left us,

which,
if it

if it

please him, he can in-

crease
less,

when he

will

and
it

please him to leave us yet

at his pleasure be

pray you to

make some good ensearch what

mj'^

poor

neighbours have
fore
;

lost.

And

bid

them take no thought

there-

for if I should not leave

myself a spoon, there shall

no poor neighbour of mine bear no loss by any chance, happened in my house. I pray you be, with my children and
3'our

household,

merry

in

God

and

devise

somewhat

with your friends, what


sion to be
this

way were
it

best to take, for provi-

made
in

for corn for


if

our household, and for seed

year coming,
still

ye think

good that we keep the


it

ground
that

our hands.

And

whether ye think
it

good

we

so shall do, or not, yet I think


it all

were not best

suddenly thus to leave of our farm,


till

up, and to put

away our

folk

Howbeit,

if

we have somewhat advised us thereon. we have more now than ye shall need, and

which can get them other masters, ye may then discharge

94

MEMOIRS OF
tlieui.

us of

But

would not that any man were sudden-

ly sent

away, he wot not whither.

At

my coming
still

hither, I perceived

none

other, but that


1 shall,

should tarry

with the king's grace.

But now

I think, because of this chance, get leave this next


to

week

come home and


upon

see
all

you

and then

shall

we

farther de-

vise together

things,

what order

shall

be best to

take.

And

thus as heartily fare you well, with


!

all

our child-

ren, as

ye can wish

At Woodstock,

the third day of Sep-

tember, by the hand of

Your

loving husband,

THOMAS more/

SIR T.

MORE.

93'

CHAP.

III.

Cardinal Wohey,
Charles.
.
,

His advancement, and quarrel

tvith

the emperor

Anecdotes of
.
.

More and
.

Wol^ey.

The
.

hing\s-

scruples

regardins; his marriage.


the matter.
. . .

His inconsistency
. . .

Morels conduct in
.

ff. heij's fall.

More made

ch-incellor
.
.

The duke

of Norfolk s speech and More's on the occasion.

More's improve'

ment

in the office.
.
. .

His respect to his father, and impartiality to his


.
.

family.

Anecdotes of his chancellorship.


. .

He clears

the chancery

of causes.
Is

He

is

offered

money by

the bishops Jor his writings. ...


,

again importuned by Henry on the dinorce.


.
.

He
.

determines ta
to

resigji the seal.

IVIvch he at

last

ejffects.

Henry* x promise
.

him.

A/ore's contempt
.

of

ivorldly
. .
.

grandeur.

His wife

is

more

concerned.

./Anecdotes

of

her.

More
.

provides situations for his


. .

attendants,

and

calls together his family.

His poverty.

Death
his

of his father, and


resignation.
. . .

his

fHal

ciffection.

His

letters to
.
. .

Erasmus on

His monumental inscription.

His buildings and


others on
.

charity at Chelsea. ...

The remarks of Fox and


.
. .

More's
re-

persecution of heterodoxy

State of the times.

More's own

futation of his calumniators.

It

is

now

time to contemplate the lofty elevation of the


fall

powerful cardinal, whose

made

the
3

way

for Sir

Thomar

More's highest advancement.

96

ME.MOIRS OF

Wolsey was the son of a butcher of Ipswich.


which obtained him a recommendation as tutor

lie re-

ceived a good education, and discovered an early capacity,


in the

mar-

quis of Dorset's family, to wliich his assiduity soon the friendship of his patron.

added

In time

lie

Avas

promoted as

chaplain to Henry VII, and was employed by his majesty


in a secret negociation regarding his intended marriage with

Margaret of Savoy.

His diligence and dexterity gained


king's

him

his master's

good opinion, but the

death, for a

time, retarded his advancement.

Fox, bishop of Winchester, having discovered that the


earl of

Surrey had supplanted him in young Henry's favour,

he hoped, by introducing Wolsey, upon

whom

he cast

his

eye as a
rival to

rising

man,

to the king's familiarit}', to oppose a


;

Surrey

in his insinuating arts

while Wolsey, the sly

churchman

likewise hoped, should be content to act a part


his

in the cabinet subordinate to

promoter.

But the

fact
fa-

proved, that Wolsey soon supplanted Surrey in Henry's


vour, and

Fox
and

in his confidence.

In the young monarch's


lead,

parties of pleasure
his years
his

Wolsey took the


profession, he

and forgetting
all

promoted

the gaiety

which suited Henry's inclination.


he represented, were indeed

His father's counsellors,


of experience, but they

men
by
his

owed not

their

promotion to the young king's favour, and


affairs

they obstructed his

their jealousies.

better
Avas

system would be, to entrust


the creature of his
liis

authority to one
othei-

who

will,

could have no

view than to

service,

and having the same

taste for pleasure with

him-

SIR T. 3I0RE,
self,

97

could acquaint him with business in the midst of gaiety.

Wolsey, in short, soon became the too absolute minister of


his sovereion.

The

choice which he had made,


;

Henry was by nature

proud of maintaining
public councils,
ter's

and Wolsey, while he directed the pretended a blind submission to his mas-

authority.

Of
list

his acquisitions

there

seemed

to

be no

end, and a bare


dious.

of his church preferments would be tehis

The pope observed


it

influence over Henry, and


in his interest, his

deeming

politic to

engage him

hohness

created him a cardinal.

Eight hundred servants, of Avhom

many were
train,

knights and gentlemen, immediately swelled his

and the churchman's ostentation obtained a kind of proverbial fame. The good Warham, as we have seen,
chose rather to
retire,

than to maintain an unequal contest


his resignation of the office

with the cardinal.

On

of chanretire-

cellor, the great seal

was given

to

Wolsey

and the

ment of

the dukes of Norfolk

and

Suffolk,

and of bishop

Fox, consigned into the cardinal's hands every authority in


the kingdom. 'o"

On
pope

the recal of

Campcggio by Leo X, from

his fruitless

errand to procure a tithe from our clergy, for enabling the


to oppose the Turks, Wolsey, his partner in the

com-

mission, Avas,

by the

king's desire, alone invested with the


all

legantine power, together with the right of visiting


clergy and monasteries,

the

and even of suspending


This

all

the laws

of the church for a year.

new

dignity not only af

Vol.

I.

f)8

MEMOIRS OF
tlie

forded

cardinal a

favourite state,

new opportunity of displaying Ins but being now by the pope's commission
all

and

liie

king's favour invested with


civil,

power, ecclesiastical

as well as

he erected what he called the Icgantinc


to the authority of which,

court, a tribunal,

no

man knew

the boundaries.

He gave
laity

it

an inquisitorial and censorial

power even over the


monks, were obliged

and the
judge.

clergy, especially the

to purchase indemnities,
his

by large sums

paid to the legate or to

By

virtue of his

comthe

mission, he pretended to

assume the Jurisdiction of

all

bishop's courts, particularly that of judging of wills

and

testaments

and he presented

to

whatever benefices he

pleased, without regard to right of election or of patronage.

When

Maximilian died, the kings of France and Spain


for the

became candidates
his

imperial crown, and the success

of Charles enabled Henry, by the power and situation of

kingdom, to hold the balance between those powers,


for

which seemed to contend

the

dominion of Europe.

Francis solicited an interview with Henry near Calais, in


the hope of being able to gain
confidence.

upon

his friendship

and

But

Charles, hearing of the intended inter-

view, determined to take the opportunity' in his passage

from Spain to the

Low

countries, of paying

Henry a
;

still

higher compliment, by visiting him at Dover

and

it

Avas

here that that politic prince instilled into the aspiring cardinal the

hope of attaining the papacy.

Yet Adrian VI,

who had been

tutor to the emperor, succeeded

Leo

in the

SIR T.
pa]nil chair,

MORE.
visit

9Sr

and Charles on paying another

to

Eng-

land renewed to Wolsey his former promises.

As Adrian's

age and infirmities promised a speedy vacancy, the cardinal

when Adrian died and Clement VII succeeded, Wolsey became fully
for that time dissembled his

resentment

but

sensible of the emperor's insincerity,

and began

to estrange

himself from the imperial court.*

More had

the courage to oppose

Wolsey
he

in the council,

as well as in parliament.

To

the former meeting Sir Thotells

mas no doubt
letterSj-f-

referreth, in the story

in

one of

his

of the cardinal's project that England should sup-

port the emperor in his Avar with France.

'

Some, he writes, thought

it

wise, that

we should

sit

still

and leave them alone.

But evermore

my

lord used the

fable of the wise

men
rain

who, because they would not be


fool,

washed with the

which should make everyone a

hid themselves in caves.


rest fools,

But when

the rain had

made

the
ut-

and these came out of


fools

their caves

and would

ter their

wisdom, the

agreed together against them,


so, said his grace, if

and overcame them.


be so wise as to

And

we
us.

Avould

sit in

peace while the


all

fools fought, the}''

would afterward make head, and


fable helped the king

fall

upon

This
a fair

and the realm

to

spend

many

penny.'

More's great-grandson informs


Cavendish,

us, that the

knight alludes

Hume, &c.

f Eng. works.

100

MEMOIRS OF
Wolsey
book of comfort in tribulation^ wlicii speaks of a great prelate in Germany, who, when he
also in his
f)liintil'r'

to
lie

had made an oration before a large assembly, woidd


ly

ask those
tie

who

sat at table with him, hoxv they alt liked

and

wlio brought forth a tnean

commendation of

it,

tcaa

xure to have no thanks for his labour.

'

On

a time,' adds the same writer,

'

the cardinal had

drawn a draft of

certain conditions of peace

between Eng-

land and France, and he asked Sir

Thomas Mure's counsel


he would
;

therein, beseeching hiin earnestly that

tell hin), if

there were anything therein to be misliked


this so

and he spoke
verily

heartily, saith Sir

Thomas, that he believed

that he was willing to hear his advice indeed.


Sir

But when
in

Thomas had

dealt

reall3' therein,

and shewed wherein

that draft might have been

amended, he suddenly rose


Sir 'J'homas

a rage and
all
Ijc

said, by the
!

mass thou art the veriest fool


smiling, said,

of

the

council

At which

God
in all

thanked that the king our master hath but oncjool

his council*

This incident perhaps led to the former allusion by More,

and

will

remind the reader of the story of Gil Bias and the


It
is

archbishop.

certainly disagreeable

to

be placed in

the situation of Gil Bias, and connected with one

take

it

in

dudgeon, iiyou do not smoke him with

who will as much

incense, as

would

satisfy three or thrice three goddesses.*

Jortin.

SIR T.

MORE.
historians,

101

Mr. Roper agrees with those


Wolsey's
spirit

who

ascribe to

of revenge against the emperor, the inflamAvith

mation of Henry's scruples regarding the marriage


Catharine, his aunt.
'

And

for the better achiving thereof,'

continues Roper,

'

he requested Longland the bishop, be-

ing ghostly-father to the king, to put a scruple into his


grace's head, that
ther's wife.
it first

it

was not lawful for him

to viarry his bro-

Which

the king not sorry to hear

of,

opened

unto Sir Thumas More, whose counsel he requested

therein,

shewing him certain places of scripture that seemhis appetite.'

ed somewiiat to serve

This happened previously to More's departure for


bray.

Cam-

Now
ly

Henry's case,

if
;

we beheve himseF,

Avas complete--

a case of conscience

and he was greatly disquieted on

account of

his incestuous intercourse with his brother's wiis

dow.

But

his majesty's
if

word

in his

own cause

to be al-

Avay relied

upon? and

there were dithculties in such a

marriage which might occasion scruples, how came they


not to have arisen earlier in the course of eighteen years
If,
?

again,

Henry was convinced


was
it

that his marriage

was con-

trary to God's holy law,

not strange that one pope


it,

could grant a dispensation for


declare
it

and then another pope and


his

void

Did not

his pleasure

cause require

a limit to the papal power, while his principles and his application to the
will it

pope declared that power unlimited

and

be too severe to conclude, that

when Henry found he

102

-AIEMOIIIS

OF
liis

coiiUl nut

cany

his point

and preserve

principles, lie dc-

terniined that his passions should not at

any

rate prove the

ivcak part to give


first

way

and that Avhat he attempted at


see,

from resentment, in forsaking the holy


believe

he might

in time brino; himself to

was indeed the cause of

God and
The
pence

of rclis;ion?

fact

is,

that Catharine was six years older

than

Henry, and the purity of her character was a poor recomin his estimation for the
all

loss

of her beauty.

Her
and

children, save

one daughter,

died in early infancy,

the king was very desirous of having male issue. the beauty of

Lastly,

Ann

Boleyn, maid of honour to the queen


this

had probably the chief influence on


virtue left llcnr}'

occasion

and her
except
di-

no hope of gratifying
the throne.

his passion,

by

raising her to

No

wonder then that a

vorce from Catharine was absolutely necessary.

More perused

the passages of scripture pointed-out by

the king, but excused himself from giving an opinion, because he had 7Wt professed dhhiifi/.

Henry, however, urged


the time recjuisite for
told

him

so strongly, that

More besought
;

a deliberation of

such importance

and the king

him

that Tonstall and Clark,

bishops of

Durham and

Bath,

with others of his privy council, should confer with him on


the subject.*

'

Now

would

to our

Lord son Roper, exclaimed


Roper.

Sir

Tho-

SIR T.

MORE.

103-

mas one day


put
in

at Chelsea water-side,

upon condition that

three things were well established in Christendom, I were

a sack and here presently cast into the Thames.'

Mr. Roper was naturally curious


things were,

and the knight continued


first is,

to

know what
'

these three

in faith son they

be these.

The

that whereas the most part of chris-

tian princes be at mortal wars, they

were

all

at universal
is

peace.

The second,

that whereas the church of Christ

at this present sore afflicted with


it

many

errors

and

heresies,
third,

were settled

in perfect

uniformity of religion.
is

The

that whereas the matter of the kinsj's marriao;e


in question,
all
it

now come

were, to the glory of

God and

quietness of

parties, brought to a

good conclusion.'

When
'

Sir

Thomas came next to

court he said to the


ni}-

kino-,

to

be plain with your grace, neither

lord of

Durham,
rest

nor

my

lord of Bath, though I

know them both

to be wise,,

virtuous,

and learned

prelates, nor
3'our grace's

myself with the

of

your council, being

all

own

servants, for
us, so

your

manifold benefits, being daily bestowed on

much

bounden unto you, be


your grace herein.

in
if

my mind meet

counsellors for

But

your grace mean to understand

the truth, such counsellors


for respect of their

may you have devised, as

neither

own

worldly commodity, nor for fear of


will

your princely authority,

be inclined to deceive you.'


to be Je-

AVhen he named these counsellors, they proved

rome, Austin, &c., and he produced the authorities which

he had collected out of them.


continues Mr. Roper,
'

'

M'hich, although the

king,',

as disagreeable to his desire, did not

104

MEMOIRS OF
like-of,

very well
in all his

yet were they by Sir

Thomas More, who


that matter had

coinmunication with the

kinc; in

alway most discreetly behaved himself, so wisely tempered,


that he both presently took thcra in good part,

and often-

time had thereof conference with him again/

After More's return from Cambray, Henry again opened


with him the question of his divorce
;

and declared

to

him,

that although at his departure he despaired of success, yet


since that time he
to accomplish
it.

had conceived great hopes of being able


For, though his marriage, being origin-

ally against the positive

laws of the church and the writ-

ten law of God, was rectified by the dispensation from

Rome, yet was


by
it

there another thing found out of late, whereto

appeared

be so directly against the law of nature


it.

that the church could in nowise dispense


referred liim to Dr. Stokesly,

Henry then

newly created bishop of Lon-

don, and in that case chief i/ credited, says Air. Roper.

y But

it

was

IMorc's great characteristic that

no hope of
from

wain or fear of disgrace could induce

him

to swerve

the dictates of his conscience

and, notwithstanding his

conference with the bishop, he saw no reason to change his

former opinion.

Stokesly, however, reported favourably of

More

to the king, saying, the knight

was truly desirous of

seeing something in the case in his majesty's favour.


i'dct is,

The

Wolsey had offended Stokesly, and the bishop wish-

ed to shew himself more solicitous than the cardinal as to


the king's favourite object.*
Roper.

SIR T. MORE.
CleiDent,
this
slill

105

smarting from the sack of Rome, was at

time anxious for his personal safety, and well

knew

that

the emperor could alone restore the Medici to their domi-

nion in Florence.

The cause of

Charles was naturally that

of queen Catharine, and a powerful one with the pope

compared

to

that of Henry.

No

wonder then that the

commission, which on Henry's application he granted to

Wolsey and Campeggio,


conclusive,

to try the

matter here, proved


to

in-

and that the cause was soon evoked

Rome.
fore-

Wolsey well knew that


runner of
nisters to
ings.
his fall, for

this

measure was the certain

he knew that Henry expected

his

mi-

be answerable for the success of their undertakthe cardinal's ruin


his

The motion of

became now

as ac-

celerated, as

had before been that of

advancement; and

in fine, the great seal

was demanded from him and given

by the king

to Sir

Thomas More.

Thus the
to

fall

of Wolsey

made way
is

for Sir
it

Thomas More

become chancellor of England, and

hath been sup-

posed by some, in which number

Mr. Roper, that one had so much at

reason with Henry for giving him the seal, was to render

him more favourable


heart.

to the cause the kins


is

Wolsey himself

reported to have said, that he

thought no

man

in

England worthier of the appointment

than More.*

The knight
Vol.

Avas

attended through Westminster-hall to


Morct

his

I.

106

MKMOIRS OF
by
his
tlic

seat in the cliancciT


'I'lic

dukes of Norlblk and

.Sullblk.

spt'cvli

made bv

grace of Noifolk on the occasion,


Sir 'J'honias, are here translated

and the subsequent one by


IVom Stapleton.

TItc

Duke of
liis

Noi'fo/h^s Speech.

'

it hatli [)leased

majesty (and
!)

may

it

prove happy

tor the

whole realm of England

to raise to the high dig-

nity

of chancellor, Sir Thonias More, a


to himself

man

suHiciently

known
done

and

to his

kingdom.

His majest}' hath

this,

from no

otlicr

motive or respect whatever, than

because he perceived in
his

this

man

all

the

endowments which
inte-

people could desire or himself could wish, for the due


office.

discharge of the high


grit}',

His understanding,

liis

tiie

innocence of

his life,

and

his

happy

genius, have

among his countrymen from his early youth, but known for many years past to the king Of this his majesty hath had very ample exhimself also. perience in many and great concerns at home and abroad,
not only been celebrated
in various offices

which he hath

filled,

in foreign embassies
affairs

of great importance, and in his daily counsels in


state.

of

He

hath thought

his

wisdom

in

deliberation, his
his elo(juence in

truth in uttering his real sentiments,

and

adorning what he uttered, surpassed by none.


a

I'rom such

man

every thing

is

to be

expected

and

since his majesty

vvisheth his people to be governed with equity


integrity

and

justice,
;

and wisdom, he hath appointed him chancellor

that his people

may

enjoy peace and justice, and the king-

dom honour and

fame.

SIR T.
'

MORE.
this

107

It

may seem
it

a novelty that

dignity

is

conferred
birtli,

upon a layman, a married man, and one of no high


Avhen heretofore
nobility
:

hath been given to highest prelates and


deficient in these
vir-

But what any one may think


is

respects,

abundantly compensated by the admirable

tues of this

man, and

his

incomparable

gifts

of genius and

of nature.

The king

liath therefore regarded,


is
;

not how great,


;

but what a
his station,

man he
but
of Sir

not his

titles,

but

his merits

not

his ability.

Lastly, his majesty would

shew
are

by

his choice

Thomas More,
his

that excellent
laity, to
;

men

not wanting
fices

among

gentry and the

fill

the of-

occupied by ecclesiastics and nobles

which being a
his

blessing

more
it

rarely afforded

by the Deity,

majesty

esteemeth
ceive then
spices,
his

the greater
for

and more dear

to his people.

Re-

More

your chancellor under these happy au-

and expect every prosperity from the choice which

majesty hath made.'

Sir

Thomas Mores Speech.

'

Most noble duke, and ye


Although
I

my honourable lords
on
this occasion,

and gen-

tlemen.

know

that what his majesty hath been

pleased should be said of

me

and which
is

your grace hath amplified in most elegant terms,

as un-

worthy of me, as I wish


ticularly requires
;

it

were

true,

and

as this otKce par-

and although your speech hath agitated


;

me more

than I can well express

yet this incomparable

favour of his majesty cannot but be most grattlul to mc,


that he thinks so favourably of me,

and commends

my

me-

J08
(liocrity to

MEMOIRS OF
you so lionourably.
^Aiid
I

cannol hut return


auipli-

yoiu" grace
fied tlie

my

most hearty thanks, who have thus

commands

of his majesty in an elegant and elo(|uent


his

oration.

For the matchless favour alone of


his generosity

majesty

to-

Mixrd

me,

and the incredible propension of

his royal

mind

to

me, by which

my

small merits have

now

for

many
this
1,

years been distinguished, and

no desert of mine, For who


majesty

cause
aiu

new honour and

these commendations.

or

what the house of

my

father, that

his

should accumulate so
Inferior to the least

many and

so great honours

upon me?
to the dis-

of his favours, of this station and ho-

nour

am
of

certainly unworthy,
its

and hardly equal

eliaro-e

duties.

'

Unwillingly

came, as
;

his

majesty hath often allowed,


this dignity
is

to court and to his service

but
is

most of

all

against

my

will.

Yet such
and

the goodness, such the be-

nignity of his majesty, that he magnifieth the smallest duties

of his subjects

richly

remunerates

his servants,

though they have


pleasing him.

little

merit, if they be but desirous of

In

this

number

have ever wished to be,

though

could not reckon myself

among
all

the meritorious.

This being the case, you


is

will

easily perceive with

me, how great a burden


ligence

imposed upon me, that

my

di-

and duty may correspond with the

king's great fa-

vour, and that I

may answer

his high expectation of


less

me.

These praises were therefore the

grateful to

me, the
aids I

more

knew

the difficulty of

my

duty,

and how few

SIR T.

MORE.
unwortiiy
ol'

109

had

to

make myself appear not


is

thcin.

Tlic

burden

greater than

my
;

shoulders will bear, the honour


is

greater than

my

merits

it

a care, not a glory


it

soli-

citude, not a dignity.


tions,

must bear

Avith

my

best exer-

and

fulfil

the duty as dexterously as 1 can.

But a
I ac-

great stimulus to

my

success will be, the strong desire which


in

hath through

life

been highest

my

mind, and w'hich


satisfying his

knowledge now
jesty's

chietiy to actuate

me, of

ma-

high claims upon me.


to

xVnd I rely upon this beinoI find


all

more easy

me, the more

your good

wills to

correspond with the king's favour.


right, united

For

my

desire of doinowill certainly

with your favourable acceptance,

establish the success of

my

endeavours, and

though small, seem great and praise- worthy. about cheerfully, we achieve happily
received appears best executed.
best possible of me, so, though I
;

make them, What we setis

and Avhat

kindly

As

therefore ye

hope the

cannot promise ye the

best possible, yet promise 1 the best I can perform.

But when
gi'cat

look upon this seat,


filled it

when

I recollect

who

and how
template
of what

persons have
sat in
it last,

before me,

when

I con-

who
skill

man

of what singular wisdom,

in business,

of what splendid and lono-.prosfall

perous fortune, with a high and inglorious


the difficulty of

at last, I see

my

situation

before me, and

mv new

hoit

nour

is

rendered
to

less grateful

and pleasant

to

me, than

may seem

many.

For

it is difficult

to succeed with ap-

probation to one of such genius, wisdom, authority, and


splendour, or to trace his footsteps with an equal pace.
It

110

MEMOIRS OF
burning a candle after
lall

s like

tlie

setting sun.

And
is

the un-

expected and sudtlen

of so great a

man

a terrible adplease

monition to me, not to

much, or

its

splendour

my new honour dazzle my eyes.


let

me

too

'

I therefore

ascend

this seat, as
it is

one which

is full

of

la-

bour and hazard, while

empty of true and

solid

honour.

The

higher

it

is,

the greater the precipice I

must guard

against, as not only the nature of the thing, but the recent

example

sufficiently

warn me. And


of you

unless,
his

under these

cir-

cumstances, the incredible propension of

majesty toward

me, and the good

will

all,

which

I gather

from your
I

agreeable countenances, recreated and refreshed me,

might

stumble at

this

very entrance, and perhaps faint

this seat

woidd not seem pleasantcr to me, than did the sword which

hung by a

horse-hair over the head of

Damocles while he
in the

occupied the state-chair of Dionysius


nours and delicacies.
this

midst of ho-

This then

Avill

ever keep in mind,

have alway before

my

eyes, that this seat will in such


full

degree be honourable to me,

of dignity and splendour,


I

a new and renowned preferment, as

continue with

all

care

and vigilance

to administer
I

my

high office with fidelity and


that

wisdom, and as

keep

in

mind

my

enjoyment of
ni}-

it

may

be but short and precarious.


;

The

one,

diligence

ought to accomplish
cessor teach me.

the other, the example of

ni}^

prede-

'

This being the case, you will

all

the

more

easily ap-

preciate

what pleasure

this

high

office, this effusion

of the

.SIR T.

MORE.

Ill

noble duke, or

this

matchless favour of his majesi}', afford

me/

'

And

as they

had before charged

him,' adds

Mr. Roper,

'

on the king's behalf, uprightly

to administer inditierent
;

justice to the people, without corruption or affection

so

did he likewise charge them again, that

if

they saw him at


his

any time

in

anything to digress from any part of

duty

in that honourable office,


their

even as they Avould discharge

own duty and


fail

fidelity to
it

God and

the king, so should

they not

to disclose

to his grace,

who

otherwise might

have just occasion to lay

his fault

wholly to their charge/

The reader
ficult subject,

will recollect, that this

speech was delivered


dif-

extempore, nearly three hundred years ago, upon that

a man's

self.

The speaker seems


suit his

sufficiently

to evince his acquaintance with his sovereign's character,

and that he foresaw


and inclination long

it

would not

own

conscience

to enjoy his dignity.

Having now traced


his profession,

Sir

Thomas More

to the

summit of

and

to the highest dignit\' which, as a layin this country,


it,

man, he could possess

we
and

are next to view


his incorruptible

the integrity of his administration in

mind

in the midst of worldly greatness.

Speedily was a remarkable alteration to be perceived in


the discharge of the office.

i53o.

The

pride of Wolsey rendered

112

MEMOIRS OF
to persons of

bim inaccessible
to his

conmion rank, and bribery


poorer and meaner a

attendants was rcqnisitc for reaching his presence


]Uit the

only.

new
more

chancellor, the
aftably

suiter was, the

would he address him, the more

attentively hear his


jiatch
it.*

business,

and the more speedily


(says

dis-

He

used

commonly every afternoon


hall,

Mr.

Roper) to

sit in his

open

to the intent that if

any per-

son had any suit unto iiim, they might the more boldly

come to his presence and open their complaints before him. Ilis manner was also, to read every bill himself before he
would award any subpoena
;

which being matter worthy of


it
;

subpoena, he would set his hand to


celled
it.

if

otherwise, he can-

His father, Sir John More,


age,

now

nearly ninety years of

was

still

a judge of the king's-bench wlien

More

be-

came

chancellor.

^Vhenever he passed through A\'estminchancery by the court of king'sfather

ster-hall to his place in the

1)ench (says Mr. Roper)

if his

had seated

liimself ere
re-

he came, he would go into the same court, and there


verently kneeling

down
in

in the sight of
if it

them

all,

duly ask

his father's blessing.

And

fortuned that his father and

he,

at readings

Lincoln's-inn,

met

together,
office

as

they

sometimes did, notwithstanding


offer in

his high

he would
;

argument the pre-eminence


would refuse

to his
to take

father
it.

though

he, for his office sake,

No

one who understands More's character,


More.

will

be sur-

SIRT. MORE.
prized at finding, that
tiie

113

claims of friendship or relation-

ship had not the smallest influence over


tial

him

in the

impar-

administration of justice.

One

of his sons-in-law said to him one day, while he was

chancellor, that in "Wolsey's time not only they of his privy-

chamber, but

his

very door-keeper,

made

great profits

whereas Sir Thomas Avas so easy of access to every degree


of persons, that
if,

in his

attendance upon him, he took


parties,
for

any
for

fee,

he should injure the

by making them pay

what they could obtain


in Sir

themselves, and which,


profitable to
'

though commendable
him.
*

Thomas, was not

You

say well son/ replied the knight,


3'^ou

do not

mislike that

are of conscience so scrupulous.

many
by

other wa3's be there, son, that I


also.

But may both do you

good and pleasure your friend

For sometimes
stead
if
;

may

my
I

word stand your friend


by

in

and sometimes
hear him before

may

my

letter

help him

or

he have a cause de-

pending before me, at your request


another ; or
if his
fall

may

cause be not
to

all

the best, yet

may

move
if

the parties to
this

some end

or arbitrament.

Howbcit,
the

one thing, son,

I assure thee
call

on ray

faith, that

parties will at

my

hands

for justice,

then were
his

it

my

father stood on one side

and the

devil

on the other,

cause

being good, the devil should have

right.'

Another of his sons-in-law, Mr. Heron, had a cause pending in chancery, and presumed so

much upon

the favour

of Sir Thomas, that he would not be persuaded to agree

Vol.

I.

ni
to

MEMOIRS OF
any compromise.

The

result was, that the chancellor,

ou licaring the cause, made a decision directly against

His talent

for drollery

could not forsake More, even in

his liighest elevation.


it is

An

attorney of the

name

of Tul),

said,

once brought him a cause

for subscription,

which

the knight, finding the matter frivolous, signed

Tale of a

Tub

and Tub bore away the cause

in

triumph, without

at that time discovering the joke.f-

While he was
to

sitting in his hall

one day, a beggar came


detained a
little

him

to complain, that Lad}'


her.

More

dog

which belonged to

The

chancellor sent for his lady^


her.

and ordered her


his hands,

to brins; the

dog with

He

took

it

into

and placing Lady More at the upper end of the


beggar to stand at the lower end.
every one justice
;

hall, desired the

sit

here,

he

said, to do
call

and he desired each


favourite immediately
;

of them to
forsook his

the dog-.
mistress

The

little

new

and ran to the beggar

upon which
by pur-

Lady More was compelled


chasing the animal. ^

to indulge her partiality

The duke of Norfolk came

to dine with Sir

Thomas one
'

day at Chelsea while he was chancellor, and found him at


church singing in the quire with a surplice on.
God's body,

God's body,

my

lord chancellor,
clerk,
t More.

said

his

grace as they
?

went home, what a parish


Roper.

a parish clerk
%

you

dis-

Ibid.

SIR T.
lionour the king

MORE.
'

115

and

his office.'

Nay/ rephed
for serving

Sir

Tho-

mas, smiUng,

'

your grace
will

may
with

not think that the king,

your master and mine,

me

God,

his

master, be offended, or thereby account his office dishonoured.' *

Few

injunctions as he granted while he

was chancellor
of

to stop proceedings at

common

law, he

had yet gone too


all

far in this particular to obtain the approbation

the

judges

whereof he received information from Mr. Roper.

Sir

to

Thomas hereupon caused the chief of the six clerks make a docket containing the whole number and causes
all

of

such injunctions as had already passed in


all

his time,

or were then pending before him, and invited


to dine with

the judges

him

in the

council-chamber at Westminster.

After dinner, he hinted at the complaints he had heard,

and then displayed so

clearly the

motives of his conduct,

that they were compelled to confess tliey would have acted


similarly

under similar circumstances.

that if the justices of every court (unto

He then observed whom the reformown


conscience bound,

ing the rigour of the law appertained) would, in their


discretion, as

he thought they were

in

reform that rigour themselves, he would grant no more injunctions.


selves,

Mhich, when they refused, forasmuch as yourlords,

my

he

said, drive

me

to that necessiiij

of award-

ing-out injunctions to relieve the people^s injury, you cannot

hereafter any more justly blame me.


Roper.

I perceive,

son,

he add-

Q2

IIG

MEMOIRS OF
k'^i/

cd to Mr. Roper,

ihcy like not so to do.

For they

see

that they may, by the verdict of the jury, cast-off all quarrels from

themselves on those; which they do account their

chief defence.

And
all

therefore

am I

compelled to abide the

adventure of

such reports.*

So indefatigable was More


and so expert and
his presidency in the

in his application to business,


it,

in the dispatch of

that

it is

said,

during

chancery, having one day ended a

cause,

calling for the

next which was to be heard, he


was not another cause depend-

received for answer that


ing. -f
it

the7'e

This fact he ordered to be entered upon record, and


rise,

gave

probably at a later day, to the following epi-

gram.

When More sometime had chanc'Uor No more suits did remain


;

been

The same

shall never

more be seen

Till Alore be there again.

More, while he was chancellor, cannot be supposed to


have had
abilities

much
in

leisure

for religious controversy.

Yet

his

were

request to oppose the reformers, and his

English works abundantly prove what his son-in-law asserts,


that he set-forth divers
trtie

profitable

works in defence of the


sown-abroad

christian religion against

heresies secretly

in the realm.

The

bishops, considering that notwithstanding the favour


Roper.

t More.

SIR T.

MORE.

117

f the king, he was not a rich man, agreed at a convocation,

with others of the


of

clerg}-^,

to

recompence him with a


five

sum

money (supposed

to

have been four or

thou-

sand pounds), to be raised


Batli,

among them.

The bishops of
in conse-

Durham, and Exeter, waited upon him


him the money
in the

quence, and acknowledging the obhgation of their body to


his labours, presented

name of

the

convocation.
thanks, that
it

More

refused the present,

and

said with his

was no small comfort to him, that men so

wise and learned so well accepted his simple doings, for

which he never intended to receive reward but at the hands


of God, to

whom

their

thanks were due.

When

no importunity would prevail with him, the bishops


his

besought More that they might present the money to


wife and children.
*
'

Not

so

my

lords,' said

the knight.
that either I

had rather see

it

cast in the

Thames than

or any of

mine should have thereof the worth of a penny.


oft'er,

For although your

my

lords,

be indeed very friendly

and honourable, yet

set I so little

by

my

profit

and so much
have
lost

by

my

pleasure, that I

would not

in

good

faith

the watching of so
liberal offer.

many

nights for

much more
that,
all

than 3'our

And

yet wish would

I, for all

upon con-

dition that all heresies

were suppressed, that


lost.'*

my

books

were burnt and

my

labour

The
that

reformers circulated a report from this circumstance,

More was

bribed by the clergy, the greater part


Roper.

ot-

il8

MEMOIRS OF
he certainly
far surpassed in

whom

knowledge, to wrile

against tlieni.*

In

bis writings, Sir


'

Thomas hath

the following jiassage

on

this subject.

I will not

say nay, but that

some good
have

and honourable men of them


of

(the clergy) would, in reward


heretics,

my
I

good

will

and luy labour against these

given

But

could

me much more than ever I dare take God and them also never fee me with one penny
it.

did or could deseri-e.


to record, that all they

thereof; but, as I plain-

ly told

them, I would rather have cast their money into

the

Thames than take


thank of

Tor albeit they were, as indeed


honourable, yet look I for

there were, both good

men and
is

my
I

God

that

their better,
theirs.

and
1

for

whose sake

take the labour and not for

am

not yet fully

so virtueless, but that of

mine own natural

disposition, withI

out any special peculiar help of grace thereto,


over-proud and over-slothful
also, to

am
1

both

be hired /or

moiici/, to

take half the labour and business in writing, that

have

taken in

this

gear (matter) since

1 began.'

-f-

Soon

after his entry

upon

his office of chancellor,

Henry

again importuned

More upon
Mr. Roper,

the subject of the divorce.


fell

The

knight, saith
his

on

his

knees and be-

sought

majesty to remain the gracious sovereign he had

ever found him.

Nothing had been so grievous

to

him

as

his inability to serve his

majesty in that matter with a safe

conscience, having ever borne in


More.

mind
)-

his majesty's
p. ^6/,

words

Eng. worki,

SIR T.

MORC.

119

on

his entry into his service, the

most virtuous lesson which


to

prince ever taught his servant, first


after

look unto

God, and

God

unto him.

Henry answered, continues Roper,

tliat

if j\Iore

could

not conscientiously serve him in that matter, he was content to accept the knight's services in other ways,

and

to

take the advice


did not revolt at

of"
it
;

others of his council

whose consciences

that he would continue his favour tohis

ward the knight, and never more molest


that matter.

conscience with

But

this

langiiage proceeded from Henry's


shall find,,

heart as

it

alway should have been, and not, as we


it

fiom what

alway was.

Dr.

Cranmer, fellow of Jesus-college, Cambridge, had


in the

remarked by accident

company of Gardiner,

secre-

tary of state, and Fox, the king's almoner, that the readiest

way, either to quiet Henry's conscience or to extort the


all

pope's consent to his divorce, would be to consult


universities of

the

Europe on the question, whose decree the


it

pope must

find

very

difficult

to resist

and Henrj-, dethe right sow by

lighted at the idea, swore


the ear,

Cranmer had got

and immediately took him into


gave

his favour.

Several

universities

their verdict according; to the king's

wish

without hesitation, and Oxford and Cambridge in

time

complied

also.

Clement, however, lying

still

under the

influence of thu emperor, persevered in


either in person or

summoning Henry,
But
of

by proxy,
citation as

to

appear at Rome.
insult
;

Henry regarded the

an

and the

earl

120

JfEMOIRS OF

Wiltshire, father of

Ann

Boleyn, wlio bore to the pope his

mairsty's reasons for not aj)pcaring, gave his hohncss the

aHiont of refusing the customary salute to his profl'ered


toe.

In a word, ^iore plainly perceived the king's determination to

marry

Ann Boleyn
his

at all events,

and that

all

his

measures and those of

parliament pointed to a breach

with the church of Rome, and to an alteration of religion.

His

office

occasioned him to be sent by the king, in comcertain nobles


to inform

pany with

and bishops, from the

lords to the
universities
af-

commons,

them the opinions of the


to recite
in

and he was compelled


forded him
little

tale,

which certainly

satisfaction

the lelhng.

But

Alore's

contempt of worldly greatness was too strong


conscience, and

to allow

him

to hold the highest of stations subject to the violation of his


it

was certainly not improbable, as matters


Irccjuently

now
the

stood, that he might

undergo similar

trials.

Thoutrh he mio-ht concur with those


illegal jurisdiction

who would
this

abbreviate

of the pope in

country, he saw

now by

the king's designs that a total rupture would Ibllow;


to

and he was not inclined

go to that length which the court

intended against the catholic cause, not to mention the objections he appeared to have to the di\orce.

We shall

not wonder then, that

particular friend, the

More soon applied to his duke of Norlolk, M' intercede with


to resign tiic sial.

Henry, that he might be permitted


complaint in
his breast arising

trom too streuuous an appU-

SIR T.

MORE.

ISI

cation to business, was the reason assigned

by the knight

to the duke, as well as in his letters to his friends, for this

resignation

and perhaps those only who are unacquainted

with the character of Henry, will blame


dissimulation on the occasion.

More

for so

much

But Norfolk knew too


to his majesty without

well the value of


filled, to

More

to

the

king in the station which he

make

such a proposal
fi-om the knight;
it

much importunity
well,

and Henry knew

his

worth too

to listen to

without

repeated solicitation.
last obtained,

The

king's consent was, however, at


his

and More waited upon


seal.

majesty by ap1532.

pointment, to deliver-up the

'

Which,'

continues

Mr. Roper,

'

as

his

grace, with
office,

thanks and praise for his worthy service in that


his

at

hands courteously received, so

it

pleased his highness

farther to say unto him, that for the service


fore

which he behonour

had done him,

in

any

suit

which he should afterward


his
(for

have unto him which should either concern


that word
it

pleased his highness to use unto him), or which


profit,

should appertain unto his

he should find

his highness

a good and gracious lord unto him.*

More's great-grandson adds, perhaps somewhat /<?e////o7?/,


*

how

true these words proved, let others be judges,

when
he

the king not only bestowed not

upon him the value of one


his posterity all that ever

penny, but took from him and

Vol.

I.

122

MEMOIRS OF
left

had, either given by himself, or

him by

his father, or

purchased by himself

It

hath been justly remarked of More, that he descendhis high station


it.

ed from

with more joy and alacrity than

he had ascended to
his fortune,

He

sported with the varieties of


station, nor the

and neither the pride of high


his

melancholy of retreat could disturb


his Inends discovered soitow

serenity.

When

on

his

descent from grandeur,

he laughed at
losing a

their distress,

and made them ashamed of


trivial

moment's chearfulness from such

misfor-

tunes.*

His second wife appears from the following anecdote to

have been
sion.

less

of a philosopher than himself on this occa-

During
been

his chancellorship,

one of

INIore's

attendants had
over, of go-

in the habit, after the church-service

was

ing to his lady's

pew

to inform her

when

the chancellor was


office.

gone.
Sir

The
said,

first

holiday after the resignation of his

Tliomas came to the pew himself, and, making a low

bow,
gined
it
;

madam,

ini/

lord

is

gone.

His lady at
little

first

ima-

this to

be one of

his jests,

and took

notice of

but when he informed her seriously that he had resignseal,

ed the

she was in a passion.

The

facetious knight

called his daughters,


in their mother's

and asked
?

if

they could espy no fault

appearance

Being answered in the ne-

* Hume.

SIR T.
gative,

MORE.

la

he replied, do ye not perceive that her nose stand-

eth

somewhat awry ? *
reported to have exclaimed with her
Tilli vally,

The good lady


you do Mr. More

is

usual worldly feeling on this occasion,


? will yoit sit

what

will

and make

gosli?igs in the ash-

es ? it is better to rule

than

to be ruled, f.

More's

first

care after the resignation of his office, was,

to provide situations for his late attendants.


his influence to place these

He

used

all
;

among

the nobility

and bishops

and next

called together his children,


their families in his

whom
own

hitherto he

had maintained with

house, in the

manner of an ancient
ly

patriarch.

Declaring to them that


still

he could not now, as he had done formerly, and

glad-

would have done, bear

all

their

expences himself, he

asked their advice, what they should do that they might


continue to
live together,

which he much desired

.'*

AVhen he saw us

silent,'

continues Mr. Roper, and in


'

that case not read}' to shew our opinions unto him,


will 1,' said he,
'

then

shew

my
'

poor mind to ye.

have been

brought-up,' quoth he,


cery, at Lincoln's-inn,

at Oxford, at an inn of the chanalso in

and

the king's court,


;

and

so

from the
j'early

least degree to
this

the highest

and yet have


little

I in

revenues at

present left
:

me

above a hunhereafter

dred pounds by the year


if

so that

now must we
f More.

we

like to live together,


Roper.

be contented to become contri-

124

MEMOIRS OF
But by

butors together.
for us to
fall

my

counsel,
first.

it

shall
will

not be best

to the lowest fare


fare,

We

not therefore
;

descend to Oxford

nor to the fare of New-inn

but
right

we

will

begin with Lincoln's-inn diet, where


full

many

worshipfuls and of good years do live

well together
first

AVhich

if

we

find not ourselves able

to

maintain the

year, then will

we

the next year go one step

down

to

New-

inn fare, wherewith


Jf

many an
fare,

honest

man
we

is

well-contented.
the next year

that exceed our ability too, then

will

after

descend to Oxibrd

where many grave, learned,


:

and ancient

fathers be continually conversant

Which

if

our power stretch not to maintain neither, then ma}' Ave yet
Avith

bags and wallets go a begging together, and hoping

that for pity

some good

folks

Avill

give us their charity, at


still

every man's door to sing salve regiiia, and so

keep com-

pany and be merry

together.'

'

And
he

whereas,' adds
"was

Mr. Roper,

'

you have heard beliving,

fore,

by the king, from a very worshipful

taken into his service, with

whom,

in all

the great

and and

weighty causes that concerned his highness or the realm,

he consumed and spent, with painful


troubles, as well
effect the

cares, travails

beyond the

seas as within the realm, in


his
life
;

whole substance of

yet, with all tha

gain he got thereby (being never wasteful spender thereof)

he was not

able, after the resignation of his office of the

lord chancellor, for the

maintenance of himself and such

as necessarily belonged unto him, sufficiently to find meat,

drink, fuel,

and apparel, and such other necessary charges.

SIR T.

MORE.

126

All the land that ever he purchased (which also he pur-

chased before he was lord chancellor) was not, I


assured, above the value of twenty

am

well

marks by the year.


I

And

after his debts paid,

he had not
left

know

(his

chain ex-

cepted) in gold and silver

him, the worth of one hun-

dred pounds/

When
was not

More's house was afterward searched upon


it

his

couniiitment to the Tower, because


really so

was thought that he


his

poor as he appeared to be, he told


this

daughter Margaret that


those

would prove but a sport

to

who knew

the truth of his poverty, unless indeed they

should Jind his wife^s gay girdle and her golden heads^'

It

was about

this

time that More's father, Sir John


;

INlore,

died, in extreme old age

having lived to see the summit


in

of

his son's prosperity,

and departing

time not to wit-

ness his severe end.

Sir

Thomas
on

is

said to have displayed

the strong-est

filial

affection
last,

this

occasion

and the old

man

breathed his

comforted by the prayers and em-

braces of his dear

son.-j^

Little, if

any, increase of fortune accrued to


Sir John's last wife,

More by
Sir

his father's death.

who

outlived

Thomas about

ten years, enjoyed her husband's chief house


in

and lands at Gubbins

Hertfordshire.

:j:

And

in

More's

Apology, written about


lands

this time,
in all

he

asserts, as for all the

and fees that I have


* More. t

England, beside such lands


% More.

Ibid, and

Roper.

126

MEMOIRS OF
fees as

and
is

I have of

the gift of the king's most noble grace,

not at this day, nor shall be zrhilc


life

(whose
tin uv)

and good health


to

my I pray God
his

mother-in-law liveth
long keep and con-

worth yearly

my

Ining, the stim offull jij'ty pounds*

Such was More's


In

charitj',

and

contempt of wealth

his

Latin works are preserved two letters which

More
office,

wrote to Erasmus soon after the rcsisrnation of his


lliey contain
lated.

some

interesting passages

which are here trans-

'

The thing which


I

have wished

for

from a boj, dear

Desiderius, which

rejoice in

your having ever enjoyed,


that being
free

and

myself occasionally,

namely,

from

public business, I might have

some time

to devote to

God
last

and myself,

that,

by the grace of a great and good God,


I

and by the favour of an indulgent prince,


obtained.

have at

have not, liowever, obtained


last stage

it

as I wished.

For

wished to reach that

of

my

life in

a state,

Avhicli,

though suitable to

my

age, might yet enable

me

to enjoy
dis-

my

remaining years healthy and unbroken, free from

ease and pain.

But

it

remaineth

in

the

hand of God,

whether
plished.

this

wish, perhaps unreasonable, shall be accom-

Meantime a

disorder of 1

know not what nature


I sutFer less in

hath attacked
pain than

my

breast,

by which

present
it

in fear

of the consequence.
* Eng. Tforks, p. 867-

For when

had

SIR T.

MORE.

127

plagued
cians

me without abatement some months, the physiwhom I consulted gave their opinion, that the long
it

continuance of
possible
;

was dangerous, and the speedy cure imit

but that

must be cured by the gradual


proper diet and medicine.

altera-

tive effects of time,

Neither

could they

fix

the period of
last.

my

recovery, or ensure

me

complete cure at

Considering
office, or

this,

saw that

must
it

either lay

down

my
of

discharge

my

duty in

incompletely.

And
office,

since I could not discharge that duty without the hazard

my

life,

and by so doing should

lose

both

life

and

I determined to lose one of


fore, that I

them rather than

both.

Where-

might consult the public good as well as

my

own

welfare, I entreated of the kindness of

my

good and

great prince, that from the high office with which (as you

know) he honoured me by

his

incredible favour, far above

my
of

pretensions,

above

my

hopes, above
I

my

wishes,

he

should
it.

now

release

me, sinking as

was under the weight

'

I therefore

pray heaven, that God,


his

who

alone

is
;

able,

may

repay these favours of

majesty toward

me

that

the remaining time which he allottcth


in inglorious

and

slothful repose, but

me may not be spent that he may give me


to

inclination and
ably.

strength of

body

also,

employ

it profit-

For, under

bad

health, I

am

not equal to anything;

nor,

my

good

friend, are

we

all like

Erasmus, that that


his

might be expected from us which

God in

kindness seems

128

MEMOIRS OF
For who but yourself

to have granted exclusively to you.

could dare to promise Avhat you accomplish?


arc not hindered

you,

who

by the inconvenicncies of growing age,

and, though you be constantly atHicted with such maladies


as might sicken

and overcome youth and strength, yet

cease you not yearly to instruct


writings, as if age
thin <i'.

mankind by your

excellent

and

ill

health had robljcd

you of no-

'

Certain praters had begun to give


1

it

out here, that

though

dissembled
;

lu}'

sentiments, I gave-up

my
I

otlice

unwilhngly

but, having set-about

my monument,
it

have

not failed to represent the matter as


epitaph, that,
if

really was, in

my

anybody could,

n)ight myself confute

such insinuations.
could not tax

In appreciating this act, though they


with falsehood, they acquitted

me

me

not of

some degree of
Avho think very

ai'rogance.
;

But

I preferred this, to letting

the other gain credit


little

certainly not

on

my own
God

account,

of what

men

say

wliile

approveth,
in the

but since 1 had written some books in our language

cause of the faith against certain of our advocates for the

most disputed

tenets, I

conceived that

defend the integrity of

my

character.

know how
these

arrogantly 1 have written,

me to And that you may I send you my epiit

behoved

taph, by which

you

will

see with

what assurance

I leave

men

uncomplinicnted, that they


please.

may

the

less

say of

nie

what they
I

have now waited a due time for suffrages on

my

SIR
official

T.

MORE.

lyc)

conduct, but no one hath jet stepped ibrward to

challenge

my

integrity.

must thus have


if

bcci very in-

nocent or very cautious, and


give

my

adversaries will not


for the other.

me

credit for the

one they must

The
suc-

king himself hath declared his sentiments on the subject


often in private, and twice in public.
cessor,
J*'or
liis

when

my

a very

first-rate

personage, took

scat, his

ma-

jesty

commanded

England, to

duke of Norfolk, high-treasurer of bear most honourable testimony of me, yea


the

more than

my

modesty w ill allow

me

to repeat,

and

to say
;

that he dismissed

me most

unwillingly at

my

entreaty

and
be

not content with so great a favour, he caused


repeated long afterward in
of peers and
in his first
iiis

this to

presence, in our assembly

commons called parliament, by my successor, speech, made as is customary on that occasion.'

The monumental scribed by More on The remams of


viously.*
his

inscription

above alluded

to,

was

in-

the south side of the choir of his parish


his office.

church at Chelsea, soon after the resignation of


first

wife being

removed

thither,

he

subjoined the verses, which he had written

many

years pre-

The

original

and a

translation here follow.

Thomas Morus,
Urbe Londinensi
familia non celebri sed Iiouesta natus,

In Uteris ufctinque versatus,

Quum

et causas aliquot

aunos juvenis egisset in

foro,

Et

in urbe sua pro shyrevo jus dixisset,


'*

English work>.

Vol.

I.

130

xAIEMOIRS

OF

All inviclissimo rci^c Ilcniico Vfll

(Cui uni rcgtim oiuiiiuin gloria prius

iiuiulilu coiiligil

Ut FIDEI DEFENSOR,

Qualcm

el

gladio sc ct culaino vcrc

praDslitit,

Mcrito vocaretur)
Adscitus in aiilam est

Delcctusque
ProqujEstor

in

consilium ct crcatus cqiics,

primum, post

caiiccUarius Lancasliiaj,
factus est.

tandem

Angliie,

Miro principis favore

Sed interim in publico rcgni scnatu lectus est orator populi


Praetcrea legatus regis nonuunqiiara fnil, alias alibi,

Postrenio vero Camcr.,(;i,

Comes ct

collcga junctus priricipi IcgaUouLs (Juthberto Tonstallo,

Turn Londinensi mox Dnmlemenii cpiscopo;

Quo

viro vix babet orbis hodie quicquara eruditius, prudcntius, melius.

Ibi inter suramos orbis cliristiani monarclias rur.sus refecta foedcra,

RtdditamqiiP

mundo

diu desideiniam pucem

El

lietissiiims vidit ct legatus interfuit.

Quam
Ut

sui^ri

pacem

(irment faxiutquc pcrennem

la hoc ofliciorum vel hononiin cursu

quum

ita versarctur

neque princeps optimus operam ejus improbaret


nobilibus essct invisus, nee iujucundus populo,

Ncquc

Furibus autera, hoiuicidis, hicrcticisque molestus,


Pater ejus landem, Johannes JNIorus, eques,

Etin cum judicumordinema piincipc cooplatus qui regius consessus vocatur,

Homo

civilis, suavis,

innocens, mitis, miscricors, .-cquus ct integer,

Annis quidam

gravis sed corpore

plusquam pro
sibi

ajtate vivido,

Postqnam eo productain

vitam vidit

Lt

iilium videret Angli;e canccllarium,

Satis in terra

jam se moratum

ratus

Libens raigravit in coelum.

At

filius,

defuncto patre,
et

Cui, quamdiu supererat, comparatus

juvenis vocari consucverat

Et

ipse

quoque

sibi

vidcbatur,

Amissura jam patrcju requirens

sill T.

MORE.

131

Et editos ex

se libeios

quatuor ac nepotes undecim lespicicus,

Apud

aiiiraum

suum

ca-pit pcrscnesccrt.

Auxit liunc

afl&^^ctum aiiimi

Siibsecuta slatim, velut appetentis senii signum,


Pectoris valctuc^? deterior.

Itaquc morlalium haruiTi rerum


Qu;i.in

sattir,

rem a puero

peiie st-mper optaverat,

Ut

ultimos aliquot

vitaj suaj

annos obtincret

liberos,

Quibus hujus

vitae negotiis

paulatim

se

subdacens

Futura? possit immortalitatem meditari,

Earn rem (aadcm

(si cccptis

annuat D'us)

Indulgentissinii piincipis incomparabili beneficio


Resigiiatis bouoribus impetravit

Atque hoc sepulcbrum

sibi

Qaod

mortis

cum nunquam
Translatis

cessantis adrcpere quotidie commoncfaccret,

Luc

prioris uxoris ossibus,

Extrucndum

curavit.

Quod
Neve

ne

supors^tc's IVustra sibi tecerit

ingruentiim trepidus mortem horreat,

Sed desiderio Christi libcns oppetat,

Mortemque

ut sibi non

omniao mortem

Sed jaimara

vi(a3 fciir ioris invcniat,

Precibus eiim

piis, lector optirae,

Spirantem precor defanctumque prosequere.

Chara Tboma;

jacct hie

Joanna hunc

iixorcula Mori,

Qv't tuniiilum Alicia;

destine,

quique

milii.

Una

mihi dedit hoc conjuncta vircntibus annis


vocet nt pucr et trina puella patrem.

Me

Altera privignis (qu;e gloria rara noverca; est)

Tani pia quam gnatis vix


Altera
sic

tuit

uUa

suis.

niccum

vixit, sic altera vivit,


est

Charior inccrtum

hc

sit

an hc

fuerit.

S 2

132

MEMOIRS OF

O
At

simul

juncti potcramus viverc nos trcs


si

Quam
socict

bene,

fatum

rcligiocjuc siiiaiit
!

tumulus, societ nos obsccro ccelum

Sic mors,

non potuit quod dare

vita, dabit.

Tbomas More,
Bora
in the city of

London, of no distinguished but of an honest family,


in literature,

Somewiiat of a proficient

When, in iiis youtli he luid pleaded at the bar some years And discharged the olhce of under-slieriff in that city He, by the redoubted king Henry VIH
(To

whom

alone of kings accrued the glory, before unknown,

Of
As indeed he

being deservedly entitled


Ol'

nEFENDEn
provetl himself

THE FAITH,
as well as the pen,)

by the sword
to court

Was ciilied

Chosen a privy-counsellor, knighted, and made


Sub-treasurer, chancellor of Lancaster, and chancellor of

England

In succession, by his king's great kindness.

]Mcantimc he was chosen speaker of the commons

And

appointed ambas-sador to various courts


Last of
all

to

Cambray,

Being associated with Cuthbert Tonstall, the chief of that embassy.

Then bishop of London and

since of

Durham,
learned, wiser, or better.

A man

than

whom

the world can scarcely boast one


to see

more

There he had the pleasure

and

to negociate

The

renewal of the leagues bitwcen the chief princes of Christendom

And the restoration to the world of long, wished- for peace. Which jxace may heaven confirm and long preserve!

When

he had so acquitted himself in these duties and Iionours,


his

That neither could

good king arraign

his

conduct

Nor

the peers or

commons

disapprove,

Though

he had been severe to thieves, murderers, and heretics,

SIR T.
At length
Appointed by

xMORE.
John More,

ISS

his father, Sir

his majesty

a judge of the king's-beiich,

A man of courtcousand pleasant manners, harmless, gentle, full of compassion, just and uncorrupT,
Old indeed
in years, yet fresh for his

age in bodily strength,

After living to see his son chancellor of England,

Thinking he had
'

tarried long

enough on

earth,

Passed willingly to heaven.

The
Compared
to

son,

on the death of his

father,

whom,

while he lived, he was called a

young man,

And
And beholding

indeed seemed so to himself,


his best parent

Wanting now
Began

four children of his

own and

eleven grandchildren,
old.

to fancy himself
this

growing

And

fancy was strengthened

By

the immediate succession of a disorder in his breast,

A
The

symptom

as

it

were of approaching age.

Having then

tasted plentifully of this world's pursuits,

thing which he had wished for from a boy.


his last years free,
tliis life's

That he might enjoy some of

And

withdrawing himself by degrees from


leisure to meditate

business

Might have

on

his future immortality.

That thing

at last (if

God

approve)

By

the incomparable kindness of his most indulgent king,

Having

resigned his honours, he hatii obtained.

And

he hath erected

this

monument,
first

Having removed

hither the remains of his


his

wife,
deatli.

As a constant memorial of
That he may not have done

ever-approaching

this in

vain while yet he lived,

That he dread not


But meet
it

the approach of death.

cheerfully from the love of Christ,

And

that he find death not his extinction

But the entrance of a happier

existence.

Do

thou good reader

assist

him with thy pious prayers

As

well

now while he

liveth as after his decea:>e.

I'M

MEMOIRS OF
Here
lies

ray Jane, dear wife of


here

Thomas More,

And
Tlucc

my

Alice and myself oulJ Ue

girls,

a boy,

my

Jane her pailuer bore,

M'ith

rarest !>tep.laiues

may my

Alic vie.
.

Sj bless'd the Oral

my

jouthful ycius

ith love,

So sooths the sccoud

my

matiuer day,

Each seems

in viun superior \vortb to

prove

For each divides

my

heart with equal sway.


lu,tc,

Religion's laws had they allow'd, or

Here brac'd

in triple concord could

we

live

('rant grave, grant lieavcn that bless'd united stale,

And

death

all'ord wUiit

lilt;

couJkl uever give

To

the elegant
is

pen of

tlie

Reverend Francis AVrangham

the reader

indebted lor the following additional translation

of the verses.
Within
This,
this

tomb Jane,
for Alice

wife of More, reclines

More

and himself designs.

The first, dear object of my youthful vow, Gave me three daughters and a son to know The next, ah virtue in a stepdamc rare

Nursed

my

sweet infants with a mother's care.

With both my years so happily have past. Which most my love, I know not first, or

last.

had

religion, destiny allow'd.

How

smoothly, raix'd, had our three fortunes flowed!


in the

But be we

tomb,

in

heaven

allietl
life

So kinder death

shall grant,

what

denied.

More had now


of his abode.

for

some years made Chelsea the place


than four houses in that parish have

No

less

SIR T.
laid

MORE.
liis

135

claim to the honour of

residence

of whicli, that
re-

subsequently belonging to Sir Robert Cecil, and more

cently called Beaufort House, appears to have the best


pretension.
Rojicr,
in
Vv^as
' *

good distance from

his house,' says

Mr.

builded he a place called the New-building, where-

a chapel, a library, and a gallery.'

Mr. More adds,


in

that Sir

Thomas
it

built

a chapel or chancel

Chelsea-church

and furnished
give
it

liberally with
it

plate, &c. saying,


arcay.

good men

and bad men take


;

This

is

said to

have
his

been the south chancel arms remained


ago.
until
it

in the east

Avindow of which,

was repaired about eighty years

lie also hired a house for the aged, in this parish,


;

and supported them


Margaret, the
plied.*
office

delegating to his favourite daughter,

of seeing that their wants were sup-

Before
will

we

leave this period of More's chancellorship,

it

be proper to advert to the allegation made, of

his fu-

rious zeal while in office in persecuting heterodoxy.

Of our

martyrologist Fox,

it

hath been justly said, that


His

neither his facts nor his temper are to be relied upon.


relations of

More

are,

however, followed by Burnet and


in a later day, following these au-

Strype

and Mr. Hume,

thorities,

hath told us that Sir Thomas, though adorned

with the gentlest manners and the purest integrit}^ carried


to the

utmost height

his aversion to

heterodoxy.

Tiiis

man,

saith the historian,

whose elegant genhis and familiar ac* More,

1S6

MEMOIRS OF
tlie

quuintance with
vei ;v

noble

spirit

of antiquity liad given him


in

enJargcd .sailinicnts, anil

who had

his early years


\)C

advanced principles wlucli even at


I'd

i)resent

would

deeni-

somewhat

too free, had in the course

ot"

events been so

irritated

by polemics, and thrown into such a supersitious

aitaciunent to the ancient faith, that few inquisitors have

been guilty of greater violence in their persecution of heresy.

Zeal lor religion hath,

it is

true,

been able in

many

in-

stances to render the sweetest dispositions ferocious, nay,


to inake

man

worse by grace than he was by nature

and

the religion in which

More had been educated,


witli

the ignoot"

rance and superstition,

the

usual progress

men's

sentiments, during the age in which he lived, might, had


lie

not himself given the


this

lie

to

these calumnies, have been

adduced at
\\ere

day

in extenuation of his

conduct.

There

moreover so many of corrupt minds and

evil prin-

ciples,

who abused
it is

the reformation to serve their

own

vilest

purposes, that

not to be wondered at

if

More, as well
it.

as others, entertained strong prejudices against

Germany
was

was a scene of uproar, the commonalty acting


their

as if all

own, and plundering whoever they pleased.

Who
light

l<nows not, exclaims the good Erasmus,

how many

and

seditious ones are ready,

on

this

pretence of reforma-

tion, to

break loose in every kind of crime, had not the

severity of
this

power

restrained their temerity

Were

it

not for

check,

the pseudo-gospellers had long since broken

into the cellars

and cabinets of the

rich,

and every one


lose.

would have proved a papist who had any thing to

SIR T.

MORE.

137

But what

Avill

a candid reader require from a

man

of

Mere's acknowledged integrity, stronger tlian the following


curious assertions in his
36^^ chapter of his

own

behalf, to

be found in the

Apology, printed

in his English

works

with which

we

will

conclude the present chapter, for they

seem

to

need no comment.

'

The

lies

are neither few nor small, which

blessed brethren have

made, and daily yet

many of the make by me.

Divers of

them

liave said, that, of

such as were in

my

house
tor-

while I was chancellor, I used to examine

them with

ments, causing them to be bounden to a tree in

my

garden

and there piteously beaten.


right-worshipful friend of
this fortnight, tell

And

this tale

had some of

those good brethren so caused to be blown about, that a

mine did of

late,

within less than

unto another near friend of mine, that

he had of late heard

much speaking

thereof.

'

AVhat cannot these brethren say who can be so shamesay thus? For, of very truth, albeit that for a great

less to

robbery, or an heinous murder, or sacrilege in a church,

with carrying away the pix with the blessed sacrament, or


villanously casting
to be
it

out, I caused sometimes such things

done by some

officers

of the Marshalsea, or of some

other prisons
well deserved pain,

with which ordering of them, by their

and without any great hurt that


by them,
I

after-

ward should

stick

found-out and repressed

many

such desperate wretches as else had not failed to have


to

gone farther abroad, and

have done to

many good

folk

Vol.

I.

133

MEMOIRS OF

a great deal

much more

liarm

vet thousli

so did in

thieves, nmrderers,

and robbers of churches, and notwith-

standing also that heretics be yet

much worse than


all,

all

they,

yet, saving only their sure keeping, I never did else cause

any such thing


life,

to be
tvpain.

done to any of them

in aJl

my

except only

Of which the one was a mine own house whom his


*
;

child,

and a servant of mine

in

father had, ere ever he

came

with me, nursed-up in such matters, and had set him to


attend upon George Jay
this child his

This George Jay did teach

ungracious heresy against the blessed sacra-

ment of
house,

the altar.

Which

heresy, this child afterward, be-

ing in service with me, began to teach another child in

my

who

uttered his counsel.


I

And, upon

that point per-

ceived and known,

caused a servant of mine to stripe

him, like a child, before mine household, for


of himself and example of such other.

amendment

'

Another was one, who


fell

after that

he had

fallen into

those fiantic heresies,


beside.

soon after into plain open frenzy

And

albeit that

he had therefore been put-up in


correction, gatherto

Bedlam, and afterward, by beating and


ed
his

remembrance

to

him and began

come again

to

himself, being thereupon set at liberty,

and walking about

abroad, his old fancies began to


I

fall

again in his head.

And

was from divers good holy places advertised, that he used,


wandering about, to come into the church, and there
toys and
tritles,

in his

make many mad

to the trouble of

good

SIR T.

MORE.

139

people

in

the divine service.


in the

And And

specially

would he be

most busy

time of most silence, while the priest was


if

at the secrets

of the mass.
if

he spied any

woman
he were

kneeling at a form,

her head hung anything low in her

meditations, then would he steal lx;hind her,

and

if

not letted, would labour to

lift-up all

her clothes and cast

them quite over her head. Whereupon,


being advertised of these pageants, and

being sent unto and required by very devout, religious folk,


to take

some other order with him, caused him,

as he

came
and
town

wandering by

my

door, to be taken by the constables

bounden

to a tree in the street, before the whole


therefore,
it
till

and there they striped him with rods


ed weary, and somewhat longer.
that his

he Avax-

And

appeared well
it

remembrance was good enough, save that


till

went

about in grazing

it

Avas

beaten home.

For he could

then very well rehearse his faults himself, and speak and
treat very well,
verily,

and promise
!

to

do afterward as

well.

And

God

be thanked

I hear

none harm of him now.

And of all who ever came in my hand for heresy, as help me God saving, as I said, the sure keeping of them
'
!

(and yet not so sure neither, but that George Constantine


could steal away), else had never any of them any stripe
or stroke given them, so

much

as a

fillip

on the forehead.

T2

140
*

MEarOIRS OF

And now
known

dare I say, that

if tliis

pacifier

had by expe-

rience

the truth of that kind of people, he avouUI

not have given so


plainings

much
own

credence to their lamentable comfaith

Howbeit, what

my

^vords will have with

him, in these mine

causes, 1 can not very surely say

nor yet very greatly care.

iVnd yet stand


I

not in so

doubt of myself, but that

trust well, that

much among many


I trust I

good and honest men (among which

sort of folk

may

reckon him), mine

own word would

alone, even in

mine own cause, be somewhat


of another

better believed, than

would
mat-

the oaths ot some twain of this


ter

new brotherhood

in a

man/

SIR T.

MORE.

141

CHAP.

IV.

More*s anticipation of

his fate.

He

tvithdraws

from

public business.
to

.... His remark on Henry's second marriage, and advice


tvell.
, .

Cromhis

His behaviour
.
.

to the bishops.

Malignant scrutiny on
letter to

conduct.

The nun of
.

Kent.

More's

Cromwell, and a
.

curious anecdote.

More

accused of misprision of treason.


.
.

Con.
.

duct of the committee for examining him.

More's firmness.
.

His
ply.

letter to the king.


. . .

He

is

accused of ingratitude.
.
.

His
,

re.

Anecdote on

his

return home.
bill.
.

The

king's conduct.
in parliament.

More's name erased from the

Acts passed

Henry's triumph

in his

new
. . .

titles.

Opinions of the Romish party,


.

and of their

adversaries.

More

refuselh the oath of succession.


. . .

He

is

cited to

appear at Lambeth.
. . .

His foreboding, and


his curious
.

letter
.
.

to
.

his daughter.

Cranmer's argument, and

letter.
.

More and

Fisher committed to the Tower, ajid attainted.

More's

sentiments on the king's marriage, and the pope's primacy.

XI IS

voluntary resignation of

this

world's dignity

was the

signal for More's rapid

declension from his high elevation,


;

to the lowest point of this world's miserj^

and, his ac-

quaintance with Henry's character enabled him to anticipate


the troubles of his latter days long before their event.

112
'

MEMOIRS OF

He would

talk,'

sijys

Mr. Kopcr,

'

unto

his wife
hell,

and

children of the joys of heaven


lires

and pains of

of the

of holy martyrs, of their grievous martyrdoms, of their of their


passions

marvellous patience, and

and deaths

which they sutiered rather than they would offend God.

And what a happy and blessed thing it was, for the love of God to sutler the loss of goods, imprisonment, loss of lands,
and
life also.

Wherewith,
fell

and the

like

virtuous talk, he

had

so long before his trouble encouraged them, that

when

he afterward

into trouble indeed,


less/

liis

trouble was to

them a great deal the

When
and to

he resigned

his office,

More withdrew

his attention

entirely from public affairs,


his writings.

and devoted himself

to prayer

He

lessened his establishment, sold a

part of his effects, and sent his children to their

own

houses.

He

is

said to have passed

many
to

sleepless nights in

the anfor

ticipation of his fate,

and

have prayed with fervour


he
said, could not

courage under
Jillip.

it,

for his flesh,

endure a

He

once went so

far as to hire his

a pursuivant to come
house, and, knocking

on a sudden at dinner-tinie to
hastily at the door, to

summon him

before the council the

next day.

This was to prepare his family for what they

had

to expect.*'

AVhen the king married


said Sir
zihile be

Ann

Boleyn,

Cod

give grace son,

Thomas

to

Mr. Roper,

that these matters within a

not conjinned with oaths.


* More.

SIR T.

MORE.

143

One day when Thomas Cromwell came to him at Chelsea with a message from the king. More said to him, Mr. Cromwell you are now entered into the service of a most
'

noble, wise, and liberal prince.


advice,
tell

If

you

will follow

my

poor

you

shall in

your counsel-giving to
to do, but never

his grace, ever


is

him what he ought


;

what he

able to

do

so shall

you shew yourself a

true, faithful servant,

and

a right Avorthy counsellor.


strength, hard were
it

For, if a lion

knew

his

own
les-

for

any man

to rule him.'*

More's

great-grandson adds, that Cromwell never learned this


son, for he advised

Henry

as he thought

would please him.

Shortly before the

new
him

queen's coronation,

More

receiv-

ed a

letter

from the bishops of Durham, Bath, and Winto

chester, requesting

keep them company from the

Tower

to the coronation at Westminster,

and

to accept of

20

which they sent at the same time to buy him a gown.


received the

More

their lordships

money but remained at home, and told when he saw them, that as he had complied

with one of their requests, he was the bolder in refusing the


other.

Their conduct, he added, put him in mind of an emperor

who made a
it

law, that whoever committed a certain

offence, unless the offender

was a
first

virgin, should suffer death.

Now

happened that the

offender was a virgin,

and

the emperor was in some perplexity

how

to act, for he wish-

ed to enforce

his law.

When

his council

had debated the

* Roper.

144

MEMOIRS OF
for sonic time,

matter
Avhy
ter?

a good, plain
lords

man

arose

and

said,

make ye
let
'

so

much ado my
first

about so small a mat-

her be

deflowered and thereafter

may

she be

devoured.
knight,
'

And
in

so though your lordships,' continued the

have

the matter of the


virgins, yet
still.

matrimony hitherto

kept yourselves pure

take good heed

my

lords

that ye keep your virginity

For some there be who,


at the coronation to
it,

by procuring your lordships


present,

first

be

and next

to preach. for the setting-forth of


all
;

and

finally to write

books to

the world in defence thereof,

are desirous to deflower ye

and when they have deflowersoon after to devour ye.

ed ye, then

will

they not

fail

my

lords,

it

lieth

vour me, but,

my power but that they God being my good Lord, I will so


not in

Now, may deprovide

* that they shall never deflower me.'

It

hath been conjectured that these words were reported

to the queen,

and that she incensed her consort against


perhaps more probable, that considering

More.

But

it is

his great

weight and influence in the .kingdom, and per-

ceiving that no persuasions were likely to


to favour the divorce, the

move

the knight

bad part of Henry's disposition


to

began now to

prevail,

and that he determined

adopt

harsher measures against More, which led in the end to one

of the deepest stains in his reign.

At

least

malignant

sciiitiny

appears from
in

this

time to

have been exercised with diligence,


Roper*

discovering

some

SIR T. RIORE.

145

ground of accusation against him.


preserved a letter from

In his English works

is

More

to

Thomas Cromwell,

vindi-

cating himself against a false report which had been circulated, that

he had written an answer to the king's

justifica-

tion of his appeal from the pope.

But Elizabeth Barton,


fairer oc-

commonly

called the

Holy maid of Kent, her ravings and


enemies of More a

revelations, soon atibrded the

casion for the exercise of their malignity.

curious letter
lio-ht

from More to Cromwell, which throws the strongest

upon

this subject,

and which was probably written

for the

king's eye, hath been preserved,

and

is

here presented to

the reader as aflbrding an authentic history of the transaction.

Sir Thomas

More

to

Mr. Thomas Cromwell.

Righ t Worsli i p ful

After m}' most hearty recommendation, with like thanks

for

your goodness

in

accepting of

my

rude long

letter,

perceive that of your farther goodness and favour toward

me,

it

liked

your mastership

to break with

my

son Roper,

of that that I had had communication, not only with divers

who were

of ac(iuaintance with the lewd nun of Canterbury,

but also with herself; aud had over that, by

my

writing

declaring favour toward her, given her advice and counsel.

Of

which

my

demeanor, that

it

liketh

you

to be content to

take the labour and the pain to hear, by mine

own

writing,

the truth, I very heartily thank you, and reckon myself


therein right deeply beholden to you.

Vol.

I.

14(5

ME^rOIRS OF
It
is,

'

suppose, about eight or nine years ago since I


first.

heard of that housewife

Canterbury that then


the king's grace a
tain
roll

^\as

At which time the bishop of (God absolve his soul !) sent unto
had, as report was then made,
it

of paper, in whicii were wiitten cerslie

words of

hei*s,

which
in

at sundry times

spoken

her trances. Whcreu])on

pleased
to

the king's grace to deliver

me

the

roll,

commanding me
1

look thereon and afterward shew him what


in.

thought

tiiere-

AVhereunto at another time, when his highness asked


I told

me,

him, that
I

in

good

faith I

found nothing in those


For, seeing
full

Words that
that
also

could anything regard or esteem.


fell in

some part
!

rhythm, and that


!

God
saw

wots

rude

for

any reason God wots


might, in

that I

therein, a right
it

smiple

woman

my

mind, speak

of her
it

own
was

wit well enough.

Ilowbcit, I said, that because

constantly reported ibr a truth that

God wrought
And
tlie

in hcr^

and that a miracle was shewed upon


would not be bold
grace, as
ter
in

her, I durst not, nor

judging the matter.

king's

melhought esteemed the matter as

light, as it al-

proved lewd.
about christmas was twelvemonth,

'

From

that time

till

albeit that continually there

was much talking of her and of


I

her holiness, yet never heard


revelation of hers or miracle
times, in
;

any talk rehearsed either of


I

saving that

heard say, divers

my

lord cardinal's days, that she

had been both

with his lordship and with the king's grace.


said, either to the

But what she

one or to the other, upon

my

faith I

had

never heard any one word.

Sm
'

T.

MORE.
tell

MI

Now,

as I

wa3 about

to

you, about Christmas was


observant, then of Can-

twelvemonth, father Risby,


terbur}',

friar

lodged one night at

my

house.

Where,

after supin

per, a little before

he went to

his

chamber, he

fell

com-

munication with
tion of holiness,

me

of the nun; giving her high


it

commendathino",

and that

was wonderful to see and unher.


it,

dersand the works which


I answered, that I

God wrought in

Which

was very glad to hear


told

and thanked

God

thereof.

Then he
life,

me

that she had been with


king's grace too.

lord legate in his

and with the


lord

my And
;

that she had told

my

legate a revelation

of hers, of

three swords which

God had

put in

my

lord legate's

hand

which

if

he ordered not well,

God would

lay

it

sore to his

charge.

The

first,

she said, was the ordering the spirituality


;

under the pope as legate

the second, the rule that he bore

in order of the temporality

under the king as

his chancellor;

and the

third, she

said,

was the meddling he was put

in

trust with

by the king, concerning the great matter of

his
re-

marriage.

And

therewithal I said unto him, that

any

velation of the king's matters I

would not hear of;

doubt-

ed not but the goodness of

God

should direct his hiohness

with his grace and wisdom, that the thing should take such

end as

God

should be pleased with, to the king's honour

and surety of the realm.


words or the
like,

When

he heard

me

say these

he said unto me, that


to pray for the king.

conmianded her

God had specially And forthwith he

brake again into her revelations concerning the cardinal,


that his soul

he

was saved by her mediation

and without any

other communication, went unto his chamber.

And

148

MEMOIRS OF
I

and
ter.

never talked any more of any such manner of mat-

Nor, since
after, to

his

departing on the morrow,


till

never saw
at

him

my

remembrance,

saw him

Paul's

cross.

After

this,

about shrovetide, there came unto me, a

little

before supper, father ivich, friar observant of Rich-

mond.

And

as

we
.''

fell

in

talking, I

asked him of father

Risby how he did

And upon
1 said yea,

that occasion he asked

me,

whether father Risby had any thing shewed

me

of the holy

nun of Kent.

And

and that

was very glad to


tell

hear of her virtue.

/ would

not,

quoth he,
;

you again

that you have heard of him already

but

I have heard and


in her^

known many great graces which God hath wrought


and
in other folk

by her, which

zeould gladly tell

you if I

And therewith he asked me, whether father Risby had told me any thing of her being with my lord cardinal? And I said j/ea. Then
thought you had not heard them already.
he
told
I.

you, quoth he, of the three

swords.

Yea

verilyy

quoth
she

Did

he

tell

yon, quoth he, of the revelations which

had concerning

the king's

grace?

Nay forsooth, quoth

I,,

nor if he would have done, I would not have given him the
hearing; nor verily no more

I would indeed ; for


to
tell

since she

hath been with the king*s grace herself and told him, methought
it

a thing needless
father

me
1

or

to

any man

else.

And when

Rich perceived that

would not hear her


little

revelations concerning the king's grace, he talked on a

of her virtue, and let her revelations alone.

And

thercAvith

my

supper was set upon the board, where

I required liim

SIR T.
to
to
sit

MORE.

U9

with

me

but he would in nowise tarry, but departed

London.
After that night I talked with him twice
house, another time in his

once in mine
at the friars.

own

own garden

At every time a great

space, but not of any revelations


;

touching the king's grace

but only of other

mean

folk I

know not whom,


had seen her
lie

of which things some were very strange


childish.

and some were very

But

albeit that he said he

in her trance in great pains,

and that he

had

at other times taken great spiritual comfort in her


tell

com-

munication, yet did he never


those tales herself.

me
I

that she

had

told

him

For

if

he had,
told

would

for the talc o.

Mary Magdalen which he


at the king's

me, and

for the tale of the

host with which, as I have heard, she said she was houseled

mass

at Calais, if I

had heard

it

of him as told
I

unto himself by her mouth for a revelation,

would have
I

both liked him and her the worse. But whether ever

heard

the same tale of Rich or of Risby, or of neither of them


both, but of
faith I

some other man


tell.

since she

was

in hold, in

good
I

cannot
it,

But
it

wot well when or wheresoever


tale too

heard

methought

marvellous to be true

and very
told
it

likely that she

had

told

some man her dream who


in
effect I little

out for a revelation.

And

doubted,

but that some of these tales which were told of her Avere
untrue.

But

yet, since

I
I

never heard them reported as

spoken by her own mouth,

thought nevertheless that

of them might be true, and she a very virtuous

many woman too.

As some

lies

be peradventure written of some who be saints

150
in heaven,
all that.

MEMOIRS OF
and yet many nuracles indeed done by them
for

After

this,

being upon a day at Sion, and talking

with divers of the fathers together at the grate, they shewed

me

that she had been with them,

and

slieweti

thing's

which some of them mishkcd

in her.

me divers And in this


and said

talking, they wished that 1 had

spoken with

her,

they would fain see


afterward

how
to

should like her.

Whereupon,
I

when

heard that she was there again,

came

thither to see her

and

speak with her myself


little

At which

communication, had
sent but

in

chapel, there were none preI

we two.
to her

In the be^innins: whereof

OCT
But

shewed, that
'

my
to

coming

was not of any curious mind anything


folk talked that
it

know, of such things as

pleased

God

to reveal
I

and shew unto

her.

for the great virtue

which

had heard so many years, every day more and more,


her, I therefore

spoken and reported of


to sec her

had a great mind

and be accjuaintcd with


to

her, that she

nnght have
in

somewhat the more occasion


devotion and prayers,
virtuous answer
ter
;

remember me to God

her

M heieunto she gave me a very


God

good,

that, as

did of his goodness far betfearfa-

by her than she a poor wretch was worthy, so she

ed that

many

Iblk yet beside

that spoke, of their

own

vourable minds,

many

things for her lar above the

trutii.

And
ly

that of

me

she had

many

such things heard, that

al-

ready she jjrayed for

me and

ever would. ^V hereof

I hearti-

thanked

lier.

SIR T. MORE.
f

151

I said

unto her, Madam, one Hellen, a maiden dusdling

about Tottenham, of lohose trances and revelations there hath


been

much

talking, she hath been with

me of late, and shewed


of such
reto

me

that she zaas with you;

and

that, after the rehearsal

xnsions as she

had

seeti,

you shewed her that they were no of the


devil,

velations, but plain illusions

and advised her

cast

them out of her mind.

And
Ji

verily she

gave therein good

credence zinto you, and thereupon hath left to lean any longer

unto such visions of her own.


eth your words true
visited with such
this she
;

hereupon she

saith,

shefndless

for ever

since, she

hath been the


to be before.
is

things as she

was wont
sir,

To
point

answered me,

Forsooth

there

in
it

this

no praise unto me, but the goodness of


hath wrought much meekness in her

God
to

as

appeareth

soul,

which hath taken


hear her spirit
laith better

my

rude warning

so well

and not grudged


I

and her

visions reproved.

liked her in

good

for this answer, than for

many

of these things that 1 heard

reported by her.
sion,

Afterward she told

me upon

that occa-

how
of.

great need folk have

who

are visited with such


spirit

visions, to take

heed and prove well of what


in that

they

come

And

communication she

told

me,

that of
flutter-

late the devil, in likeness of a bird,

was

flying

and

ing about her in a chamber, and suffered himself to be


taken.
sight

And being in who were present,


were
all

hands, suddenly changed in their


into such a strange ugly-fashioned
afraid

bird, that they

and threw him out at a win-

dow.

'

For conclusion

we

talked no word of the king's

159

MEMOIRS OF
else,

grace or any great personage


or

nor

in effect

of any

man
to

woman

but of herself anil myself".


(for ere

Jkit after

no long

connnunication had

ever

we met

my

time

came

go home),

gave her a double-ckicat, and prayed her to


mine, and so departed from her and never
Ilowbcit, of a truth,
I

pray

for

me and
her

spake

witli

after.

had a great

good opinion of her and had her

in great estimation, as

you

shall

perceive by the letter which 1 wrote unto her.

For afterward

because

had often heard that many


as

n^i^ht

woishipful folks, as well

men
;

women, used
folk are

to

have

much

communication with her


quisitive

and many

of nature in-

and

curious,

whereby they
it

fall

sometimes into such


which thing
I

talking, that better were

to forbear, of

no-

thing thought while

talked with her of charity

thereit

fore I wrote her a letter thereof.

Wliich, since

may

be

peradventure thai she brake or

lost,

I shall insert

the very

copy

tiiereof in

this

present

letter.

These were the very

-words

Good Madam and my


lister in our
'

right dearhj-hdoved
!

Lord God

i\fter

most hearty commendation, good mind


in

I shall beseech

you
that

to take
I

my

good worth

and pardon

me

am

so homely, as of myself, unrequired,


,

and

also with-

out necessity

to give

counsel to you

of whon), for the

good inspirations and great revelations, which it liketh Almighty God of his goodness to give and shew (as many wise,
well-learned,

and very virtuous

folk testify), 1 myself

have

need, for the comfort of

my

soul, to

require and ask ad-

SIR T.
vice.

MORE.
it

153

For

surely,

good madam, since

pleaseth
little

God

some-

times to suffer such as are far under, and of


to give yet fruitful advertisement to

estimation,

such others as are in

the light of the spirit so far above them, that there were

between them no comparison


phet Moses to be
in

(as

he suffered

his

high pro-

some

things advised

and counselled by

Jethro), I cannot, for the love which in our


3'ou, refrain to

Lord

I bear

put you in remembrance of one thing, which

in

my

poor mind I think highly necessary to be by your


referring the

wisdom considered,
to

end and the order thereof

God and

his holy spirit to

direct you.

Good madam

doubt not but that vou remember, that

in the begfinnino; of
I neither

my

communication with you,


curious, of

shewed you that

was nor would be


matters.

any knowledge of other men's


any matter of princes or of

And

least of all of
it

the realm.

In case

so were that

God

had, as to

many
not

good

folks beforetime

he hath, any time revealed unto


unto your ludyship that
of,

you such
them.

things, I said

I Avas

only not desirous to hear

but also mould not hear of

'

Now madam

I consider well, that


are not
all

many

folk desire to

speak with you,


in this point.

who
little

peradventure of

my mind
and some

But some hap

to

be curious and inquisitive


;

of things which

pertain unto their parts

might peradventure hap to talk of such things as might


peradventure afterward turn to

much harm.

As
for

I think Avas

you have heard how the

late

duke of Buckiuiiham

moved with
Vol.
I.

the fame of one

who was reported

an holy

154

MEMOIRS OF
as attcrward was
liis
it

monk, and had such talking with hun


great
piirt

of

liis

destruction and disheriting of


religion.
It

bloody

and great slander and infamy of good madam,


to

sulUceth me,
things.

put you

in

rememhrance of such
spirit

As

nothing doubt, your wisdom and the

of

God
with

shall

keep you from talking with any person

(s[x;cially

high persons), of any such manner of things as pertain to


prince's aflairs, or the state of the realm.

But only

to

com-

mune and

talk with

any person, high and low, of such manto the soul be profitiible for

ner of things, as

may

you to

shew, and for them to know.

And

thus,
I

my
:

good lady and dearly-beloved

sister in

make an end of this my needless advertisement unto you AVhom the blessed Trinity preserve and
our Lord,
increase in grace
;

and put
in

in

your mind, to recommend

me and mine
sea, this

unto him

your devout prayers.

At Chel-

Tuesday, by the hand of

Your

heart3'-loving brother

and bedesman,
K'.

THOMAS MORE,
'

At

the receipt of this

letter,

she answered

my
at

servant,

that she heartily thanked me.


to

Soon

after this, there

came

mine house, the

prior of the charterhouse

Shene,

and one Brother Williams with him.


to

Who

nothing talked

me, but of her and of the great joy that they took in
;

her virtue

but of any of her revelations they had no com-

munication

But

at another time Brother AVilliams

came

SIR T.
to

MORE.

155

me and

told

me

a long

tale,

of her being at the house

of a knight in Kent
to destroy himself.

who was

sore-troubled with temptations

we talked of, nor should have done of likelihood though we had tarried together much longer, he took so great pleasure, good man

And none

other thing

to

tell

the tale with

all

the circumstances at length.

'

"When

which there

came again another day was a profession, some of


nun ? And
1

to Sion,

on a day

in

the fathers asked

mc
is

how

I liked the

answered, that in good faith I


;

liked her very well in her talking

howbeit,

quoth

I,

she

never the nearer tried by that


likely to he very bad, if she

For I assure ye, she

zvere

seemed good, ere I should think


to

her other,

till

she
is

happened

he proved naught.
I

And

in

good

faith that

my manner

mdeed, except

were

set to

search and examine the truth

upon

likelihood of

some cloak-

ed

evil.

For

in

that case, although I nothing suspected


if I

the person myself, yet, no less than


I would, as far as

suspected him sore,

my

wit would serve me, search to find

out the truth

as yourself hath

done very prudently


in

in this

matter. Wherein

you have done,


ver}"^

my mind

to your great

laud and praise, a

meritorious deed, in briuging-forth

to light such detestable hypocrisy.

Whereby every

other

wretch

may

take warning, and be feared to set-forth their

own

devilish-dissembled falsehood, under the

manner and
woin-

colour of the wonderful work of

God.

For

verily this

man

so handled herself with help of that evil spirit

who

spired her, that, after her


cross,

own

confession declared at Paul's-

when

I sent

word by

my

servant unto the prior of

156

A^EMOJRS OF
cliaiterhousc that
slic

tlie

Avas

undoubtedly proved a

false,
opi-r

deceiving hypocrite, the good

man had had


first

so

good

uion of her so long, that he could at the

scantly believe

me

therein.

Ilowbeit,

it

was not he alone wiio thouo;ht


another right good
till

her so very good, but


as little

many

man

beside;

marvel was, upon so good report,

she was prov-

ed naught/

A
letter
it

curious anecdote attends this letter.

When
It

INIore's

English works were printed by order of queen Mar\',

this

was concealed, though not destroyed.

was resolved,

seems, to raise the credit of the nun's story, who, being


as well as a prophetess,
;

acknowledged a martyr

might per-

haps have obtained canonization

and

it

was judged imthis

prudent, no doubt, to leave so high a tcstiiuony as

from

More
1534.

in her

way.

The

session of parliament holden early in 1534, passed


this

an act of attainder against some who were engaged in


imposture.

Elizabeth herself, and several others, suffered

for their crime; while Fisher

and others were condemned


had not discovered

for misprision of treason, because they

what they heard from Elizabeth.


More's

name was

at

first

included in the latter

bill,

and

t Burnet

ex M-S.S. Norfolc.

SIR T.

MORE.

]57

Mr. Roper informs us that the knight soHcited to be himself

heard by the king in

his

own

defence.

Henry, how-

ever, appointed
cellor, the

the archbishop of Canterbury, the chanto

duke of Norfolk and Cromwell

examine him

and when Mr. Roper advised More with anxiety


interest with these commissioners

to use his

to obtain

his

discharge

from the

bill,

he answered he would.

The committee, however, soon

threw-off the mask,

and

proved plainly enough by their proceedings, that the


of the nun was merely a hand/e on
this occasion.

atfair

For

in-

stead of insisting on that point, the chancellor began by


recapitulating to

More

the king's favours, adding, that he

could ask no worldly promotion which Avould be denied

him, and hoping, in conclusion, that


jesty's affection

this

view of his mare-

toward him, would induce the knight to

compence

the king in his turn, and to


bishops,

add

his

consent to

what the parliament, the


ready passed.

and

the universities

had

al-

More, continues Mr. Roper, mildly


living
is

replied,

'

No man

there

my

lords,

who would

with better will do the

thing which should be acceptable to the king's highness,

than

who must needs


benefits,
I verily
;

confess, his manifold goodness


.

and bountiful

most
I

liberally

bestowed on me.
this

Howbeit

hoped,

should never have heard of

matter more

considering that I have from time to time,

alway from the beginning, so plainly and truly declared

my

mind unto

his grace,

which

iiis

highness ever seemed to me.

IflS

MEMOIRS OF
a most gracious prince, very well to accept, never mind-

like

ing, as he said, to molest

me more
And

therewith.

Since which
to
is

time, any farther thing which was able to

move me

any

change could
in all the

never

find.

if I

could, there
it

none

world

who would have been gladder of

than 1/

The knight had

likewise addressed to his majesty the folatfair

lowing letter relative to the

of the nun

in

which

it

seemeth that he thought

it

advisable to hold his king in re-

membrance of what

his majest}'

had formerly promised as

honour. to the knight's o


Sir Thomas

More

to

King Henri/ VIII.


call to

It

may

like

your highness to

your gracious

re-

membrance, that

at such time as,

of the great weighty

room and

office

of your clianccUor (with which, so far above

my

merits or qualities able and meet therefore, your high-

ness had of your incomparable goodness honoured and exalted me),

you were

so

good and gracious unto me, as at


and disburden me, giving

my
me
of

poor humble

suit to discharge

licence with your gracious favour, to bestow the residue

my

life

to

come about

the provision for

my

soul in the
for

service of

God, and
it

to be your

bedesman and pray

you

pleased your highness farther to say unto me,

that for the service which 1 before had done

you (which

it

then liked your goodness far above

my

deserving to com-

mend), that in any

suit

which

should after have to your

grace, which either should concern

mine honour

(the

word

SIR T.
it

MORE.
tluit

IbO

liked

your highness to use unto mc), or

sliould per-

tain unto

my

profit, I

should find your highness a good and

gracious lord unto me.

So

is it

now, gracious sovereign, that worldly honour

is

the thing whereof I have resigned both the possession

and

the desire, in the resignation of your most honourable office.

And

worldly

profit, I trust

experience proveth, and

daily

more and more

shall prove, that I

never was very

greedy thereof.

'

But now

is

my

most humble

suit

unto your excellent


to tender

highness, to beseech the

same somewhat

my

poor

honesty.

Howbeit

principally,

that of your

accustomed
grace,

goodness, no sinister information


to

move your noble

have any more distmst of

my

truth

and devotion toward


life

you, than I have or shall during


in this matter of the

my

give cause.
I

For

nun of Canterbury,

have unto your

trusty counsellor

Mr. Thomas Cromwell,

b}'

my

writing, as

plainly declared the truth as I possibly can.


claration, of his

Which my
his

de-

duty toward your grace and


I

goodness

toward me, he hath,


In any part of
all

understand, declared unto your grace.

which

my

dealing, whether

any other

man may
hand
of
to

peradventure put any doubt or move any scruple


tell,

of suspicion, that can I neither


let.

nor

lieth

it

in

my

But unto myself


demeanour
to

it is

not possible any part


the very clearness of

my

said

seem

evil,

mine own conscience knoweth


and intent so good.

in all that matter

my mind

160
*

MEMOIRS or
Wherefore, most gracious sovereign,
it

neither will, nor


to reason

yet can

well

become mo, with your highness

or argue that matter; but in

my

most humble manner,

prostrate at your gracious feet, I only beseech your grace,


with

your own high prudence and 3'our accustomed good-

ness, consider

and weigh the matter.

And

if

that in your

so doing, your osvi virtuous

mind

shall

give you, that not-

withstanding the manifold and excellent goodness that your


gracious highness hath by so

many manner
or

of ways used

imto me,

were a wretch of such a monstrous ingratitude,

as could with
digress

any of them

all,

any other person

living,

from

my bounden
I
loss

duty of allegiance toward 3'our

good grace, then desire


hand, than the
liberty,

no farther favour at your gracious


that ever
withal,
I

of

all

may

lose,

goods, lands,

and fmally

my

life

^\'he^eof the keeping

of any part unto myself could never do

me

a pennyworth

of pleasure
short
life

but only should

my

comfort be, that after

my

and

3'our long (which, with continual

prosperity
!),

to God's pleasure, our

Lord of his mercy send you


in

should

once meet your grace again


with you.
yet be one
;

heaven, and there be merr^'


other pleasures, this should

Where among mine

that your grace should surely see there then,

that howsoever you take me, I

am

your true bedeman now,


I die,

and ever have been, and


pleasure be to do by me.

will

be

till

howsoever your

Howbeit,

if in

the considering of

my

cause, your high

wisdom and gracious goodness perceive

(as I verily trust in

God you

shall),

that I none otherwise have

demeaned my-

SIR T. 3IORE.
self

IGl

than well

may

stand with

fulness toward your royal

my bounden duty of faithmajesty; then in my most humble


may
relieve

wise I beseech 3'our most noble grace, that the .knowledge

of your true gracious persuasion in that behalf


the torment of

my present heaviness (conceived


I

of the dread

and

fear,

by that

hear such a grievous

bill

put by your

learned counsel into your high court of parliament against

me)

lest

your grace might, by some

sinister information,

be moved any thing to think the contrary.

'

Which

if

your highness do not, as I trust in

God and

your great goodness, the matter by your own high prudence

examined and considered, you

will

not

then in

my

most
albeit

humble manner
very

beseech your highness farther

that in respect of
slight
;

my

former request

this other

thing

is

yet since your highness hath herebefore, of

your more abundant goodness, heaped and accumulated

upon me, though


left all

was thereto far unworthy, from time to

time, both worship

and great honour too

since I

now have
life

such things, and nothing seek or desire but the


for

to
'

come, and pray

your grace the while

it

may like

your highness of your accustomed benignity, somewhat to


tender

my
bill

poor honesty

and never

suffer,

by the mean of
to take occasion

such a

put-forth against me,

any man

hereafter against the truth to slander me.

Who

should yet,

by the

peril

of their
shall,

own
I

souls,

do themselves more hurt


ray
heart, with

than me;

who

trust, settle

your
truth

gracious favour, to depend

upon the comfort of the

Vol.

I.

162

MEMOIRS OF
of heaven, and not

aiul liojie

upon the

fallible

opinion, or

soon-spokon words, of light and soon-changeable people.

'

And

thus,

most dread and most dear sovereign

lord, I

beseech the blessed 'IVinity preserve your most noble grace

both body and soul, and

all

who

arc your Avell-willers,


if

and

amend

all

the contrary.

Among whom,

ever

be, or

ever have been one, then pray I

God, that he may with


it.'

mine open shame and destruction declare

When

the committee found that no persuasions would


in the

move More
if

determination he had made, they had re-

course to threats, and told him that the king had ordered,
gentleness would not win him, that in his

name they
there

should charge him with ingratitude,

that never was

servant to his sovereign so villanous, nor subject to his prince


so traiterous, as he.

For

he, by subtle, sinister slights, ?nost


to set-forth

unnaturally procuring and provoking him

a book

of the assertion of the seven sacraments and maintenance of


the pope^s authority,

had caused him,


to

to his

dishonour through-

out all Christendom,

put a sword

in the pope's

hand

to

fight against himself. -f

My

lords,' replied

More,
me.

'

these terrors be arguments


to

for children

and not

for

But

answer to

that,

where-

with ye do chiefly burden me,

believe the king's high-

ness, of his honour, will never lay that to


ng. works.

my

charge

for

f Roper.

SIR T.

MORE.

1G3

none

is

there

who can

in that point say in

my

excuse more

than his highness himself.

Who
by

right well knoweth, that I


his

was never procurer nor counsellor of


but after
it

majesty thereunto,

was

finished,

his grace's

appointment, and

consent of the maker's of the same, I was only a sorter-out

and placer of the principal


Wherein when
I

matters therein contained.

found the pope^s authority highly advanced,


miglitily defended, I said

and with strong arguments


his grace,

unto

I must put your


is

highuess in remembrance of one


is

thing,

and that
i/ou

this.

The pope, as your grace knoweth,


in league xvith
alt

a prince as
princes.

are,

and

other christian

It

may

so hereafter fall-out, that

your grace and he

may vary upon some

points of leagues, whereupon

may

gro'ssi)

breach of amity and war between ye both.


therefore that that place be amended,
slenderly touched.

think

it best

and

his authority more,

'

Nay,' quoth his grace,


to the see

'

that shall

it

not.

We

are so

much bounden
honour
to it.

of Rome, that we cannot do too much

'

Then did

tute

remembrance of the staof premunire, Avhereby a good part of the pope's pasI

farther put

him

in

toral cure here

was pared away. To that answered


we we

his high-

ness, whatsoever impediment be to the contrary,

will set-

forth that authority


see our
his

to the uttermost, for


I

receive from that


till

crown imperial; which


it

never heard-of before

grace told
his
4

me

with his

own mouth.

-So that I trust,


this,

when

grace shall be once truly informed of

and

Y2

jGI

MEMOIRS OF
gracious rcincinbruncc

call to his

my

doings

in

that bciialf,

his highness will never


in

speak of

it

more, but clear

me

there-

thoroughly himself.'

And

thus displeasantly departed

t/iey,

adds Mr. Roper.


Chelsea and was very merry by

More now took boat


the way,

for

Mr. Roper

rejoicing to see

him

so,

hoped he was

discharged from the

bill.

When

they reached Chelsea, they

walked together
inint sir that all

in the garden,
is

and Mr. Roper observed, I


you
be so merry.

well, because that

It

is

so

indeed son Roper, I thank

God I answered

the

knight.

Jire

you then put-out of

the parliament bill ?

Bj/

my

truth, son Roper,

I never remembered

it.

Never remembered
near,

it !

a cause that toucheth yourself so


!

and

us all for

your sake

I am

sorry to hear
all

it ;

for I

verily trusted
uell.

when I saw you

so merry, that

had been

Wilt thou know, son Roper,

why I was

so

merry

That would I gladly,


In good faith I

sir.

rejoiced, son, that

1 had given the devil a

SIR T. MOilE.

1&3

foul fail

and fhal with

those

lords

I had gone

so far,

as

without great shame

could never go hack again.

Henry, as might be expected, was highly offended with

More

for

what was

little less

than charging him with a de-

liberate falsehood,

and

in his unjust revenge he said the bill

regarding the nun should proceed against the kniglit.


chancellor and other lords replied, the

The upper-house was so


it

bent on hearing him


rescind his

in his

own
bill.

defence, that

were best to

name from
to

the

Henry was, however, too

much bent on

carrying his point, not to reject this proposal.

He

was too haughty

submit to a subject with


to

had entered the

lists,

and too revengeful

whom he forgive a man

who had been


him.

his

favourite

and yet had dared to offend

After a good deal of bouncing, he said he would

himself be present in the house

when

the

bill

should pass

imagining, no doubt, that the parliament stood so

much

in

awe of him,
to reject
it.

that the lords would not dare in his presence

The committee of council, however, were of a different opinion. They feared, or pretended to fear, the talents
and eloquence of
Sir

Thomas,

Avhich were superior

and

deem it prudent to hazard his appearance to plead in his own defence, whose virtues and amiable conduct had prejudiced so many in his favour be-;

commanding

nor did they

fore

he spoke.*
* Roper and Warner.

JOG

MEMOIRS OF
to

But the moic they pressed Henry


haughtier he grew in insisting on
really
liis

give

way, the

point,

^\'hether they

appreliended a defeat, or whether they contended

with the king in this manner from the personal friendship


they had for Sir Thomas,
collect the tyranny Avith
it is

difHcult to say.

If his

we

re-

which Henry treated

jiarlia-

ments we

shall

perhaps ascribe their arguments to the

lat-

ter cause, or to
if

the apprehension of the people's clamour

he was attainted as the accomplice of so weak an im-

postor.

Audley and the

rest

(says

Mr. Roper)

at last besought

Henry on

their

knees, to forbear; adding, they mistvusted

not, in time, against

him

to

find some meet matter

to serve

the king's turn better.

For

in this cause

of the nun he was

accounted
in,

so

innocent and clear, that for his dealings there-

men reckoned him far

worthier of praise than of reproof

Henry

at length complied

and Cromwell meeting Mr.

Roper on the morrow,

desired

him
\\

to

tell

More, that

his

name was
this

erased irom the

bill.

hen the knight heard


said,

from

ISlrs.

Roper,

in

faith

Megg, he

quod

differtur

non aufertur.^

The

confidence

which Henry's ministers expressed of

finding meet matter to serve their master's turn, as well as

More's last-mentioned prediction, proved but too correct.

AYhen the nun of Kent afforded not a substantial ground


Roper.

SIR T.

MORE.

167

for his persecution, other subjects

were not wanting which

soon led to the tragedy of

his cruel death.

In

this

year were passed,

I.

The important law


;

Avhich regvilated the succession to

the crown

* by Avhich the marriage of


;

Henry with Cara-

tharine was declared void


riage,
tified
;

the sentence annulling the mar-

which Cranmer, now primate, had passed, was

and the

king's marriage with

Ann was

confirmed.

The crown was appointed

to descend to the issue of this

marriage, and failing such, to the king's heirs for ever.

An

oath was moreover required in favour of

this succession,

under penalty of imprisonment during the king's pleasure,

and of

forfeiture of

goods and

chattels.

II.

The parliament

conferred on

Henry the

title

of the

only supreme head on earth of the church of England .-j-

By
and

Avhich,

exclaimed the Romish party, the king and those


sole judges in matters of faith,

he commissioned were made


all

ecclesiastical discipline

was entrusted

to

them

the

commission which our Saviour had granted


their successors

his apostles

and

was

set aside

by a human law, and the auon the


power,
of the

thority they derived

from heaven transferred to the state

the care of souls was

made

to devolve

civil

and the being of


magistrate.

Christianity to

depend on the

will

25 Hen. VIII. 22.

f 26 Hen. VIII.

c. l.

168

MEMOIRS OF

III.

An

act was passed,* by

uhich

it

was

iiuidc

high

treason for any person to maliciously wish,

will,

or desire,

by words or

writing, to deprive the king's

most royal per-

son, the queen, or their heirs apparent, or

any of them,

of the dignity,

title

or

name of

their royal estates.

Soon

after the

second of these acts, a Latin bible was he thus

published, and in his majesty's general preface

triumphed in

his

new

title.

'

Nos

itaquc considerantes id erga

Deum

otVicii

nostri,

quo

suscepisse cognoscimur, ut in regno simus sicut

anima
exer-

in corpore ct sol in

mundo, utque loco Dei judicium


vice

ceamus

in

regno nostro, et omnia in potestate habcntes,

quoad jurisdictionem, ipsam etiam ecclesiam


regamus ac tueamur,
soh atur, nos
didit, ct in
ci

Dei sedulo

et disciplinae ejus, sive augeatur aut

rationem reddituri simus qui nobis earn cre-

eo Dei vicem agentes Deique habcntes imaginem

quid aliud vel cogitare vel in

animam

inducere potuimus,

quam
ne

ut

eodem confugeremus, ubi

certo discendum esset,

(juid aliud

vel ipsi faccremus, vel

faciendum

aliis

prae-

scriberemus,

quam quod ab hac

ipsa

Dei lege ne

vel trans-

versum quidem digitum aberrare convinci queat.'

We have

also

another instance of Henry's triumph, in


justly calls his remarkable medalion
;

what Mr. Evelyn


the remark, that

the

legend of which, in Latin, Hebrew, and Greek, provoked

Henry

crucified the church as Pilate


* Ibid.
c. 13.

had

SIR T.

MORE.

169

done her Saviour, with the solemnity of three

inscriptions.

A representation
lyn's

of this medal

may

be seen in Mr. Eve-

Numismata.
those days

The Romish party


had power
for all

in

it

seems understood by
king

head of the church, chief

spiritual shepherd, as if the


priests,

to administer sacraments, ordain

&c.

which they considered a layman as unqualified.

But

their adversaries

contended that the term was only intend-

ed to declare the prince superior to the prelates who ex-

empted themselves from


ject to the pope,

his authority
;

by

their immunities,

as well as superior to the laity

and that he was not subjurisdiction over


all

who claimed

princes

and
title

countries.

challenge

The king, said power to debate,


religion,
all

the latter, did not by this


or determine
less to

any point of

faith or

matter of

much

be supreme judge

or governor of

doctrine and discipline.

But would the

subject in his realm have the assistance of the magistrate,


to establish truth

and prohibit
but

error,

and by wholesome
laid neither

punishments to prevent disorder, that authority


in prelate nor in pope,
in the prince
;

and

in his

domi-

nions neither doctrine nor discipline could be estabhshed by


public law, but by his consent.

The oath of succession was generall}' taken, and bishop Fisher and More were the only persons of note who entertained scruples as to
for virtue
its legality.

More's high reputation


his authority

and

integrity
others,

made

it

supposed that

would influence

and great pains were taken

to con-

VOL.

I.

170

ME>[OIRS OF
tliis

vince him on

point.

But

the kniglit was immoveable,

probably because the preamble of the oath implietl, that


the marriage with Catharine was unlawi'ul
;

and whatever

we

think of his persuasion on this head, the integrity of his

conscience

we must

admire.

Mr. Roper
to

More,

relates that the


b}'

duke of Norfolk
it is

said

one day

'

the mass

Mr. More,
would wish

perilous striving

Avith princes

therefore I

j'ou

somewhat

to in-

cline to the king's pleasure, for,

by God's body! Mr. More,


'

indignaiio principis ?nors


plied i\Iore
; '

est.'

Is that all

my

lord

?"

re-

then

in
is

good
this

faith the difference


;

between

your grace and

me

but

that I shall die to-day

and

you to-morrow.'

About a month after the law for the oath was passed, certain clergy of London and ^Westminster, and More, were
cited to

appear at Lambeth before Cranmer, Audley, and

CroniAvell,

who were appointed


his

to tender tlie oath unto

them.
Avent to

More, as was

custom on important occasions,


;

mass that morning

a7id zchereas, continues

Mr.
his

Roper, he evermore used


wife and children,

before, at his departure

from
all

whom

he tenderly loved, to have them bring


to kiss

him

to his boat

and there
suffer

them and bid them

fare-

well, then

woidd he

none of them forth the gate

to fol-

low him, but pulled the wicket after him and shut them all

from

him.

His countenance, adds Mr. Roper, who accom-

panied him in the boat to Lambeth, bespoke a heavy heart

SIR T.

MORE.

17i

and

sitting still sadly azvbile, at last

he suddenly whispered
!

to him, son Roper,

I thank our Lord


to

the field

is

won.

As

his

mind appears

have predicted, More was not


this

permitted to return
his favourite

home from

summons and he wrote


;

daughter an account of the proceedings at

Lambeth,

whicli here followeth.

Sir Thomas

More

to

Mrs. Margaret Roper.

'

When

was before the Lords at Lambeth,


called
in
;

was the

first

who was

albeit that

]\Ir.

Dr. the vicar of


After the

Croydon was come before mc, and


Avhat marvelled in

divers others.

cause of my sending-for declared unto me, whereof I some-

my

mind, considering that they sent for


I desired the sight of the
seal.
;

no more temporal men but me,


oath
;

which they shewed

me
roll.

under the great

Then

desired I the sight of the act of the succession


delivered

which was

me

in

a printed

'

After which read secretly by myself, and the oath con-

sidered with the act, I shewed unto them, that

my

purpose

was not

to put

any

fault either in

the act or

any man who


it,

made it, or in the oath condemn the conscience


self,

or

any man who sware

nor to

of any other

man

but as for myin the

in

good

faith

my

conscience so

moved me

mat-

ter,

that though I would not

deny

to swear to the succes-

sion, yet

unto that oath which there was offered

mc

could

not swear, Avithout the jeoparding of

my

soul to perpetual

172

.AIEMOIRS

OF
I

damnation.

And

that

if

they doubted, whether

did re-

fuse the oath only for the grudge of

my

conscience, or for
satisf)-

any other fantasy,

was ready therein to

them by

mine oath

Which

if

they trusted not, what should they

be the better to give


that I

mc any

oath

And

if
I,

they trusted
that of their

would therein swear

true, then trusted

goodness they would not move

me

to swear the oath


it

which

they offered me, perceiving that for to swear

was against

my
*

conscience.

Unto

this

my

lord chancellor said, that they

all

were

very sorry to hear


oath.
first

me

say thus, and see


all, it

me

thus refuse the


I

And

they said

that on their faith


;

was the very


king's

Avho ever refused

which would cause the

highness to conceive great suspicion of me, and great indignation toward me.

And

therewith they shewed


lords

me

the

roll,

and

let

me

see the

names of the

and the commons,

who had sworn and subscribed their names already. AVhich, notwithstanding, when they saw that I refused to swear the same myself, not blaming an}' other man who bad sworn, I was in conclusion commanded to go down into the garden.

'

And

thereupon

tarried in the old

burned chamber
Dr. Latimer
divers

which looketh into the garden, and would not go down because of the heat.

In that time saw

INIr.

come

into the garden,

and there walked he with

other doctors and chaplains of

my

lord of Canterbury.

And

very merry I saw him

for

he laughed, and took one

SIR T.
or twain about the

MORE.
if

173

neck so handsomely, that

they had

been

women

would have weened he had been waxen

wanton.
lords,

After that

came Mr. Dr. Wilson

forth

from the

and was with two gentlemen brought by me, and


AVhat time

gentlemanly sent straight unto the Tower.


lord of Rochester

my

was

calicd-in before

them, that can I

not

tell.
;

But

at nio-ht I heard that he

had been before


till

them

but where he remained that night, and so forth


I

he was sent hither, I never heard.


vicar of Croydon, and.
all

heard also that Mr.

the remnant of the priests of

London who were


had such favour
lingered, nor
travail

sent for, Avere sworn.

And

that they

at the council's hand, that they to

were not
their

made

dance any long attendance to


are sometimes

and

cost, as suitors

wont
So

to be, but

were sped apace to

their great comfort.

far forth, that

Mr. vicar of Croydon,


or else that
it

either for gladness or tor dryness,


ille

might be seen quod


lord's

notus erat pontijici,


for drink,

went to

my

butter3'-bar

and called

and

drank vakle fomiltariter.

When
it

they had played their pageant and were gone

out of the place, then was I called-in again.


Avas

And

then

declared unto me, what a

number had sworn even


any
sticking.

since I
I laid

went

aside, gladly, without in

Wherein
answer^
-

no blame

no man

but for mine

own

self,

ed as before.

'

Now

as well before
;

as then, they

somewhat

laid

unto

me

for obstinacy

that whereas before, since I refused to

174

MEMOIRS OF
I

swear,

would not declare any special part of that oath

vhicli grudged

my

conscience, and open the cause whereI

fore.

Tor thereunto

had

said

unto them, that

leared

lest the king's

highness would, as they said, take disj)lcafor the

sure

enough toward me
tiiat if 1

only refusal of the oath.

And
I

should open and disclose the causes wlvj, I


his highness.
I

should therewith but farther exasperate

Which
all

would

in

nowise do

but rather would

abide

the

danger and harm which might come toward me, than give
his highness

any occasion of farther displeasure, than the


unto me, of pure necessity constrained
this

offering of the oath

me.

liowbeit when they divers times imputed

to

me

for stubbornness

and obstinacy, that

would neither swear

the oath nor yet declare the causes why, I declined thus far

toward them, that rather than


stinate, I

I avouUI

be accounted for ob-

would ui)on the king's gracious licence, or rather

his

such commandnient had, as might be

my

sufficient war-

rant that

my

declaration should not oflend his highness nor

put

me

in

the danger of any of his statutes, I would be

content to declare the causes in writing.


give an oath in the beginning, that if
I

And

over that, to

might find those


might think

causes by any

man

in suchwise answered, as 1
satisfied, I

mine own conscience


mine

would

after that, with all

heart, swear the principal oath too.

'

To

this I

was answered, that though the king would give


it

me
I

licence under his letters patent, yet would

not serve

against the statute.

Whereto

I said,
liis

that yet

if I

had them,
peril for

would stand unto the

trust of

honour, at

my

SIR T.

MORE.
lo
!

175

the remnant.

But yet thinketh me

that if I

may

not

declare the causes without peril, then to leave


clared
is

them unde-

no

ohstinacy.

'

My

lord of Canterbury, taking hold

upon

that that

said, that

I condeynned not
me, that
it

the consciences of
^ve\\

them who swear,


it

said unto
for

appeared

that I did not take

a very sure thing and a certain, that I might not lawswear


it
;

fully
ful.

but rather as a thing uncertain and doubt-

Hut

then,' said

my

lord,

'

you knoxv for a certainty,


you he hounden
to

and a thing

zvithout doubt, that

obey your

sovereign lord your king.

And

therefore are you hounden to

leave-of the doubt of your unsure conscience in refusing the


oath,

and take
it.

the sure

zeay in obeying of

your prince, and

swear

'

Now

all

was

it

so that in
this

mine own mind mcthought


argument seemed

myself not concluded, yet

me

sud-

denly so subtle, and namely, with such authority coming


out of so noble a prelate's mouth, that I could again an-

swer nothing thereto, but

onl}^

that I thought myself I

might not well do so

because that in

my

conscience
I

this

was one of the


not obey

cases, in

which
Since

was bounden that

should

my

prince.

that whatsoever other folk


I

thought in the matter, Avhose conscience or learning not condemn nor take upon
science the truth

would
con-

me

to judge, yet in
side.

my
I

seemed on the other

Wherein

had

not informed

my

conscience neither suddenly nor slightly,


for

but by long leisure and diligent search

the

matter^

176

MEMOIRS OF
of
trutli if that

And

reason
all

may

concliule, then

have we a

ready way to avoid

perplexities.

For

in

whatsoever mat-

ter the doetors stand in great doubt, the king's

commandall

ment, given upon whether side he


doubts.

list,

solvcth

the

'

Then

said

my

lord of

Westminster to me, that howsoever

the matter seemed unto that

mine own mind,

had cause

to fear

mine OAvn mind was erroneous, when I see the great council of the realm determine of my mind the contrary
;

and that therefore


on

ought to change
if

my

conscience.

To

that I answered, that

there were no

more but myself upother, I

my

side,

and the whole parliament upon the


afraid to lean to

would be sore
so

mine own mind only, against


if it I

many.

But on

the other side,

so be that in
I

some
have,

things for which I refuse the oath,

have, as

think

upon

my

part as great a council and a greater too, I

am

not then bounden to change


.it

my

conscience, and conform

to the council of

one realm against the general council of

Christendom.

Upon

this j\Ir. Secretary, as

he

who

tenderly favoureth

me, said and swear a great oath, that he had leaver that his own only son (who is of truth a goodly young gentleman,

and

shall,

trust,
1

come

to

nmch

worship) had lost his

head, than that

should thus have refused the oath.

For
sus-

surely the king's highness

would now conceive a great

picion against me,

and think that the matter of the nun of


contiived by

Canterbury was

all

my

drift.

To which

I said,

SIR T.
that the contrary was true

MORE.
well

177

and

known; and whatsoever


to help
it,

should mishap nie,

it

lay not in

my power

with-

out the peril of

my

soul.

'

Then

did

my

lord

chancellor repeat before

me my

re-

fusal

unto Mr. Secretary, as to him who was going unto

the king's grace.

And
I

in the rehearsing, his lordship

re-

peated again, that

denied not, but was content to swear

unto, the succession.


point,

Whereunto

said, that as for that

/ would be content,
conscience.
that
too,

so that I might see

my

oath in

that point so framed, in such a

manner

as mi;^ht stand

with
tary

my

I'hen said
that
lie

ni}' lord,

mary Mr. Secre-

mark

will

not sxaear that neither

but under some certain manner. hut that

Verily no

my

lord,

quoth

I;

will see

it

made

in suchzeise first, as

shall myself

see that 1 shall 7ieither be forstcorne, nor

swear against

my

conscience.

'

Surely as to swear to the succession, I see no


I thought,

peril.

But

and think

it

reason, that to

mine own oath


;

I look well

myself and be of counsel also in the fashion


to swear for a piece,

and never intended


to the whole oath.

and

set
!

my

hand

IJowbeit, as help

ing the whole

oatli, I

never withdrew
it
;

me God as touchany man from it nor


;

never advised any to refuse

nor never put, nor


;

will put,

any scruple

in

any man's head

but leave every

man

to his

own

And methinketh in good faith, that so were it good reason, that every man should leave me to mine.'*
conscience.
* English works.

Vol.

I.

Aa

F7b

MEMOIllS OF

^Vc scarcely know whetlicr to be most surprised, that


such an argument of mere sound as
liave

wc have heard should proceeded from Cranmer, should for a moment have
Every man, saith
S'.

influenced More, or should have had any weight with Burnet.


in his

own mind,

and

Paul, should be fully persuaded

though nothing be unclean of itself


it
is

yet to him zoho esteemeth anything unclean, to him


clean
;

un"

a)id he

who doubtcth

is

damned

if he

eat.

Thus, a
thins:

though obedience to the king and the laws


right in itself,

Avas

and the duty of eveiy subject

yet

if it

ap-

jieared to

More

that the oath Avas contrary to the laAV of


laAV

God

(to

which another
he was so

had restrained the power of the


in
his

legislature),

far

from being obliged

conscience

to take this oath, that he Avould

have violated
it.

conscience

and been self-condemned had he taken


of God, Avere not blamed by ISIore,
for they

Others

who saw
it,

nothing in the oath Avhich they thought contrary to the law


it is

true, for taking

had only done

their

duty

but Cranmer's conclu-

sion, that

More

Avas

only doubtful in this matter, by no


Avas,

means
Ihat
it

folloAved.

He

on the contrary, well persuaded,


to take the oath, Avho

it

Avould be sinful in

him

thought

contrary to the laAv of God.*

On
fit

tlie

abbot of "Westminster's reasonino-

there needeth

no other reflection than Burnet hath made,


for so lich

it

Avas

very
his

an abbot, and discovered the temper of

oAvn conscience.

Srt Warner.

SIR T.

MORE.
to

179

For four days, More was committed


this

the custody of

abbot

during which time, saith Mr. Roper, the king


to

consulted with his council what order were meet


with him.

be taken

Cranmer, foreseeing the

ill

effect

of contending

with persons so highly esteemed over the world as

More
letter

and

Fisher,

and who were of such a temper that

severity

would have no influence with them, wrote a curious


to

Cromwell on the occasion, which


library,

is

preserved in the
in too

Cotton
a
light,

and places More's estimation

strong

not to

demand a

place in the present work.

Archbishop Cramner

to

Secretary Cromwell.

Right Worshipful Mr. Cromwell,


After most hearty commendations, &c.
;

doubt not but

you do

right well

remember, that
to

my

lord of Rochester

and

Mr. More were contented

be sworn to the act of the


the preamble of the same.

king's succession, but not to

What was
less it

the cause of their refusal thereof I

am

uncertain,

and they Avould by no means express the same.


must needs
be, either the diminution
rity of the

Neverthe-

of the autho-

bishop of

Rome,

or else the reprobation of the

king's

first

pretenced matrimony.

But
they

if

they do obstinately persist in their opinions of

the preamble, yet


will

meseemeth

it

should not be refused,

if

be sworn to the very act of succession, so that


all

they will be sworn to maintain the same against

powers

a 2

180

MEMOIRS OF
For hereby
shall

and potentates.
satisfy the

be a great occasion to

princess dowager,

and the lady Mary, who do


their souls
if

think that they should

damn

they should
not only
it

abandon and relinquish


and other

their estates.

And
much

should stop the mouths of them, but also of the emperor,


their friends, if they give as

credence to
or doing

my
all

lord of Rochester

and

ISIr.

More speaking

against them, as they hitherto have done and thought that


others should have done

when they spake and


if

did with

them.

And

peradventure
this

it

should be a good quietation to

man}' others within

realm,

such

men
I

should say,
is

that the succession comprised within the said act

good
is

and according
not one within
it.

to

God's laws.
realm

For then

think there

this

who would once

reclahn against

And
alter

whereas divers persons, either of a wilfulness

will

not, or of

an indurate and invertible conscience cannot,

from their opinions of the king's fnst pretenced mar-

riage (wherein they

have once said

their minds,
if

and per-

ease have a persuasion in their lieads, that

they should

now vary

therefrom, their fame and estimation were dis-

tained for ever), or else of the authority of the bishop of

Rome

yet

if all

the realm with one accord would appre-

hend the

said

succession, in

my judgment
Which
shall

it is

a thing to

be amplccted and embraced.


trust surely in

thing,

although I

God

that

it

be brought to pass, yet

hereunto miaht not a

little

avail the consent

and oaths of
j\Iore,

these two persons, the bishop of Rochester

and Mr.

SIR T.

MORE.

181

with their adherents or rather confederates.


king's pleasure so were, their said oaths

And

if

the

might be suppress-

ed, but

when and

Avhere his highness might take

some com-

modity by the pubUshing of the same. Thus our Lord have

you ever

in his conservation.

From my manor

at Cro^'don,

the 17'* day of April,

Your own assured

ever,

THOMAS CAXTUAR.
But
this wise

advice was not taken.


if Ave

The king (exasperMr. Roper), was


indicted on the
It being-

ated by queen Ann,

may

credit

much

irritated against

them, and resolved to proceed Mith

them according
statute

to law.

They were both


to

and committed prisoners


if

the Tower.

apprehended that

they were allowed the use of pen and

paper they would write against the marriage or supremacy,


these were after a certain time denied them.

AVhen

the.

king sent a general pardon, More and Fisher were not only

excluded by general clauses, but by two particular acts


they were attainted of misprision of treason.
ticular, was,

More

in .par-

by an invidious preamble, charged with inhad received from the

gratitude, for the great favours he


kin2:?

and

for stud vino-

to

sow

sedition

among

the kino's
;

subjects,

and refusing

to take the oath of succession

the

king's grants to

him were

therefore declared void,


related.*

and ho

was attainted as already

Roper and Burnet.

192

MEMOIRS OF
this

Severe and revengeful as was


it

treatment,
;

some thought

necessary in so important a

crisis

lest

indulgence to him

who had enjojed


to revolt

so great authority, might encourage others


in their

and be corrupted

affection

to the king.

IMore was certainly not wanting in loyalty, and was willing


to take the oath of succession

however he disapproved the

second marriage.
science,

His treason consisted in a point of con-

and

if

the severity

shewn him was not unjust,

it

was probably

impolitic.

If his reputation

was high before,

his present persecution for a

mere opinion, and an opinion


had so
lately favoured,

which the king and


likely only to raise

his suljjects
it

was

higher.

"VVe

have

in his

English works another letter from

More

to

Cromwell, written probably while he was in the custody

of the abbot of ^^'estminste^, from which

we

will

extract

what he
primac}',

writes concerning the king's marriage

and the pope's

and therewith conclude the present chapter.

'

Upon

a time at

my

coming from be3'ond the

sea,

where
duty

had been on the

king's business, I repaired, as

my

was, unto the king's grace, being at that time at


court.

Hamptonand shew-

At which

time, suddenly his liighness, walking in

the

gallcr}',

brake with
it

me

of his great matter


his

ed me, that

was now perceived, that

marriage was

not only against the positive laws of the church and the
Avrittcn

law of God, but


it

also, in

suchwise against the law

of nature, that

could in nowise by the church be dispens-

sill T.

MOKE.

1S3

able.

Now

so

was

it,

before

my

going over the sea I had

heard certain things moved against the bull of the dispensation,

concerning the words

iii

the law Levitical and the law

Deutronomical, to prove the prohibition to be dejure div'mo.

But yet perceived


found in the bull
not be
sutficient.

not at that time, but that the greater


in

hope of the matter stood,


;

certain faults
bull should

which were

whereby

tlie

by the law

And

such comfort was there in that point


a good season, that the counsel on

(as far as I perceived),

the other part were fain to bring-forth a brief, by which

they pretended those defaults to be supplied.

The

truth of

which

brief

was by the

king's counsel suspected,


for the
trial

and much

diligence

was thereafter done


finally

of that point.

Wheiein what was


else I

found, either 1 never knew, or

not remember.

'

But

I rehearse
first

you

this

to the intent

you

shall

know,

that the
it

time that ever I heard that point moved, that-

should be in such high degree against the law of nature,


in which, as 1

was the time


shewed
it

began
laid

tell

you, the king's grace

me

himself,

and

the Bible open before

me
and
far-

and there read

me

the words which

moved

his highness

divers other erudite pei'sons so to think,

and asked

me

ther

what myself thought thereon. At which time, not preto look that his highness should

suming

any thing take that

point for the more proved or improved for


in so great a matter, I

my

poor mind

shewed nevertheless, as

my

duty

was at

his

commandment, what

thing I thought upon the


liis

words which I there read.

AVhereupon

highness, ac-

184

MEMOIRS OF

ccpting benignly

my sudden

unadvised answer, command-

ed

me

to

comnmnc'

farther witli

Mr.

J'ox,

now

his grace's

ahnoner, and to read with him a book which then was in

making

for that matter.

'

After which book read, and

my

poor opinion eftsoons

tleclared unto his highness tliereupon, his highness,

hkc a
men.
was

prudent and a virtuous prince, assembled at another time


at

Hampton-court a good number of very


time, as far as ever 1

v^^ell-learned

At which
them.

iieard, there were, as

in so great a matter

most

likely to be, divers opinions

among

IJowbeit, 1 never heard but that they agreed at that

time upon a certain form, in which the book should be

made

which was afterward, at York-place

in

my

lord

cardinal's

chamber

read, in the presence of divers bishops

and many learned men.

And

they

all

thought, that there

ajjpearcd in the book good and reasonable causes, which

might well move the king's highness, being so virtuous a


prince, to conceive in his
riage.
A\ Inch, while

mind a scruple against

his

mar-

he could not otherwise avoid, he did

well

and virtuously,

for the acquieting of his conscience, to

sue

and procure

to

have

his

doubt decided by judgment

of the church.

'

After this the suit began, and the legates sat upon the

matter.

During

all

which time,

never meddled there, nor

was a man meet

to

do

for the

matter was in hand by an


little

ordinary process of the spiritual law, whereof I could


skill.

And. yet while the

legates were sitting

upon the

SIR T.

MORE.

185

matter,

it

pleased the king's highness, to send me, in the


lord of

company of my

London, noAv of Durham,

in

em-

bassy, about the peace which, at our being there, Avas con-

cluded at Cambra}^ between his highness and the emperor

and the French

king.

And
well

after

my coming home,
unworthy
as I

his high-

ness, of his only goodness, as far


to,

was there-

made me,
after

as

you

know,

his chancellor of this realm.

Soon

which time,

his grace

moved me
;

again, yet eft-

soons to look and consider his great matter


indifferently to

and

Avell

and

ponder such things as I should find therein.


it

And

if it

so were, that thereupon

should hap me, to see


to that part,

such things as should persuade


gladly use

me

he would

me among

other of his counsellors in the matter.

And

nevertheless he graciously declared unto


in

me, that he
conscience

would

nowise that
I

should other thing do or say therein,

than upon that that


should serve
;

should perceive mine

own

and
the

after
first

me and that I should first look God unto him which most gi-acious
;

unto God.
words, was

lesson also that ever his grace gave me, at


into his noble service.

my

first

coming

'

This motion was to

me

very comfortable

and much

longed, beside anything that myself either had seen, or by


farther search should
other, yet specially to

hap

to find for the

one part or the


in the

have some conference

matter

with some such of his grace's learned council, as most for


his part

had laboured and most had found


his

in the matter.

Whereupon
Vol.
I.

highness assigned unto

me

the noAV most

reverend fathers, archbishops of Canterbury and York, with

ISG

5IEM0IRS OF
his grace's

Mr. Dr. Fox now


the Italian
friar.

almoner, and Mr. Dr. Nicholas


1

Whereupon

not only sought and read,

and, as far forth as


well weighed

my

poor wit and learning served me,

and considered, every such thing as I could find myself, or read in any other man's labour which 1 could get who anvthino; had written thereon, but had also diligent
conference with his grace's counsellors aforesaid.
\\

hose
but

honours and worships I nothing mistrust


that they both have

in this point,

and

will

report unto his highness, that

they never found obstinate manner or fashion in

me

but a a

mind

as toward

and

as conformable, as reason could in

matter disputable require.

"Whereupon, the king's highness being farther advertised,

both by them and by myself, of


matter,

my

poor opinion in the


to

wherein,

to

have been able or meet


his highness,

do him

service, I

would, as I then shewed


all

have been
I

more glad than of

such worldly commodities as

then had or ever should come to


ously taking agreeabl}^

either

his

highness, graci-

my

good mind

in

that behalf, used,

of his blessed disposition,


ter,

in the

prosecuting of his great mat-

only those (of

whom

his grace

had good numbei-), whose

conscience his grace perceived well and fully persuaded up-

on that

part.

And

as well

me, as any other

to

whom

his

highness thought the thing to seem otherwise, he used in


his

other

business.

Abiding, of his abundant goodness,

nevertheless gracious lord unto every


willing to put
science.

man

nor never was


liis

any man

in

rufHc,

or trouble of

con-

SIR T. MOIIE.
'

187

After this did I never nothino- more therein.


1 tlierein to the
Ijiit

Nor never
in quiet to

any word wrote

impairing of his grace's part,


setthng
ni}'

neither before nor after.

mind

serve his grace in other things, I

would not so much as look

nor

let lie

by

me any book
I

of the other part, albeit that 1

gladly read afterward divers books ^vhich were


part.

made on

his

Nor never would


made
in

read the book which Mr. Abel

made on
heard say

the other side, nor other books which were as I


in

Latin beyond the sea, nor never gave ear

to the pope's proceeding in the matter.

Moreover, where I

had found
of

my study a

book which

id

before borrowed

my lord

of Bath (uhich book he had

made of the
and that
;

matter,

at such tinie as the legates sat here thereupon) which book

had been by me negligently cast aside


him,
I

I shcAved

would send him


fiiith

home

his

book again

he told me,

that in good

he had long time before discharged his

mind of
remain

that matter, and, having forgotten that copy to

in

my
at

hand, had burned his

own copy which he

had thereof

home.

And

because he no more minded to

me<ldle anything in the matter, he desired


sarhe

me

to burn the

book too

and, upon

my

faith, so

did I

'

Beside

this,

divers other

ways have
it

so used myself*

that if I rehearsed

them
his

all

should well appear, that I

never have had against

his grace's

marriage any manner of

demeanour, whereby

highness might have any

manner

of cause or occasion of displeasure toward me. wise as 1

For, likeit

am

not he

who

either can, or

whom

could be-

come

to take

upon nie the determination

or decision of

Bb2

18S

MEMOIRS OF
a weighty matter (whereof divers points a grerft

sucli

way

pass

my

learning)

so

am

I lie

who, among other

his grace's

tUithful

sul^jeets, his

highness being in

possession

of

liis

marriage, will most heartily j)ray for that prosperous estate

of his grace long to continue, to the pleasure of God.

As touching
1 nothinti

the

third

point, the

primacy of the pope,


it
is,

meddle

in that mailer.

Truth

that, as

told

you Avhen you desired me to shew you what I thought therein, I was myself sometime not of the mind, that the
b\'

primacy of that see should be begun

the institution of

God

until that I read in

that matter those things which

the king's highness had written, in his most famous book


against the heresies of Martin Luther.

'

At

tlie first

reading whereof, I

moved

the king's highit

ness, either to leave-out that point, or else to touch

more
to

slenderly

for

doubt of such things as

after

might hap

fall in (juestion,

between

his highness

and some pope, as


^\ here-

between princes and popes divers times have done.


unto
his highness

answered me, Ihat he


;

zcould in nowise any-

ihivg minish of that matter

of which thing, his highness


I

shewed

me

a secret cause, whereof

never had anything

lieard before.

But

surely, after that I

had read
I

his grace's

book thereon, and so many other things as

have seen on

that point by this continuance of these seven years since

and more,

have found in
S'.

effect, the

substance of

all

the
the

holy doctors, from

Ignatius,

disciple of S'.

John

Evangelist, unto our

own

days, both Latins

and Greeks,

SIR T.
so consonant

MORE.

189

and agreeing

in that point,

and the thing by


good
faith

such general councils so confirmed

also, that in

I never neither read nor heard anything of such effect

on

the other side, which ever could lead

me

to think
iii

that

my

conscience were well discharged, but rather


peril, if I

right great

should follow the other side and deny the primacy

to be provided

by God.
did, yet can I nothing, as I

Which

if

we

shewed you,
that

perceive any
denial
;

commodity which ever could come by


primacy
is

for that the

at the leastwise instituted

by

the corps of Christendom, and for a great, urgent cause, in

avoiding of schisms
sion,

and corroborated by continual succesj'cars at the least;

more than the space of a thousand


Gregory,
I

for there are passed almost a

thousand years since the time


is

of holy

S',

And

therefore, since all Christendom

one corps,

cannot perceive how any member thereof may,


assent of the body, depart from the

without the

common common head. And


by
ourselves, I

then,

if

we may not
if

lawfully leave

it

cannot perceive but,

the thing were a


avail,

treating in a general council,

what the question could

whether the primacy were instituted immediately by


or ordained by the church.

God

As
to

for the general councils

assembled lawfully, I never


it

could perceive but that, in the declaration of the truth,


is

be believed and to be standen-to.


for

The
Or

authority
else,

whereof ought to be taken

undoubtable.

were

there in nothing no certainty but, through Christendom, up-

90

MEMOIRS OF

on every man's art'ectionate reason, all things might be brought liom day to day into continual ruflle and confusion, i'roni A\ hich, by the general councils, the spirit of God, assisting
every such council well assembled, keepeth, and ever shall keep, the corps of his catholic church.

And

verily, since

the king's highness hath, as by the book of his honourable


council appeareth, appealed to the general council from the
jiope (in which council I beseech our

Lord send

his
it

grace

comfortable speed!), methinketh in

my

poor mind,

could

be no fartherance there unto


ness should in his

his grace's

cause, if his high-

own realm
seem

before, either
to derogate

by laws making

or books putting-forth,
ly the

and deny not on-

primacy of the see apostolic, but also the authority

of the general councils too.


ness intcMidcth not
;

Which

I verily trust his


it

high-*

for,

in the

next general council,

may may

well happen, that this

pope may be deposed, and another

substituted in his room, with Avliom the king's highness

be very well content.

For, albeit that

have

for
I

mine own part such opinion


nor never
the
king's

of the pope's primacy as

have shewed you, yet never


;

thought

the

pope above the general council

have, in any book of mine, put-iorth


subjects in our vulgar tongue,
authority.

among

advanced greatly the pope's

For, albeit that a


after the

therein, that,

man may peradventure find common manner of all christian


;

realms,

speak of him as j)rimate

yet never do 1 stick


point.

thereon, with reasoning


in

and proving of that


jNlasker, 1

And

my

book against the

wrote not

1 wot-Aveil live

SIR T.
times,

MORE.
S'-

191

and yet of no more but only


none of
printed,

Peter himself; from

whose person many take not the primacy, even of those

who
that

grant

it

his

successors.

And

yet was that


truth, before

book made,
spoken-of.
in

and put-forth of very

any of the books of the council were

either printed or

But, whereas I had written thereof at length

my

Confutation before, and for the proof thereof had


all

compiled together
time as
I little

that I could find therefore, at such


fall

looked that there should

Ijetween the
as
is

king's highness

and the pope such a breach


after that

fallen
to-

since

when

saw the thing

likely to

draw
it

ward such displeasure between them,


ly,

I suppressed

utter-

and never put Avord thereof


it.

into

my

book, but put-out

the remnant without


I

Which

thing well declareth, that


in that

never intended anything to meddle

matter against

the king's gracious pleasure, Avhatsoever

mine own opinion

were

therein.

'

And

thus have
Avith

I,

good Mr. Cromwell, long troubled


;

your mistership

a long process of these matters


it

Avith

Avhich I neither durst, nor

could become me, to encum-

ber the king's noble grace.

But

beseech you, for our

Lord's love, that you be not so Aveary of my most cumbrous


suit,

but that

it

may

like you, at

such opportune time or


help that his highness

times as your Avisdom

may

find, to

may, by your goodness, be


ful

fully

informed of

my

true, faith-

mind.

That he may the

rather,

by the means of your

Avisdom and dexterity, consider, that in the matter of the

nun, there Avas never on

my

part any other

mind than

1P2

ME^!OIRS OP

good.

Nor yet
I

in

any other thing

else,

never was there

nor never shall there be, any farther fault found in me, than that

cannot in every thing think the same way that


learning, do;

some other men, of more wisdom and deeper

nor can find in mine heart otherwise to say, than as mine

own conscience
groAvn, in

giveth me.

^Vhich condition hath never


his gracious

any thing which ever might touch


haply

pleasure, of

any obstinate mind or mis-affectionate appetite,


;

but of a timorous conscience


ter perceiving,

rising

for lack

of bet-

and yet not without tender respect unto


his

my

most bounden duty toward


favour
in
all

Whose only I so much esteem, that I nothing have of mine own this world, except only my soul, but that I will with
noble grace.
it,

better will forego

than abide of his highness one heavy,

displeasant look.'

Sm

T.

MORE.

193

CHAP.

V.

Henry Fill and


Mrs. Roper
manner.
,

Constantius.
. . .

More' s Jirmness.
to

Anecdotes.

visiteth him.

His pains

meet his fate in a becoming

His

reflection on the execution


. .

of Reynolds, &c.
visiteth
his

His

verses on Cromwell's promise.

Lady More
letters

him, and some


. . .

of

the

privy-council.

His two
.

to

daughter.
.

His

hooks taken from him. arraigned,


indictment.
.
.

Rich's conversation with More.


.

More
to the
. . .

The commissioners and jury.


.

More's answer

His answer

to

Rich.

The jury find him


.

guilty.
.

His arguments as
cellor's anstoer,

to the insufficiency

of the indictment.
.

The

cha7i. .

and More's
.
.

reply.

Sentence passed upon him.


.

Farther proceedings.

More's courage and constancy,


.

. .

His meet-

ing with his children.


ter.
.

Anecdote.

His
. . .

last letter to his

daugh-

Sir
. ,

Thomas Pope
last jokes,

sent to him.

More's preparation for


burial.

death.

His

and

execution.

His

J.

HE

later times of

Henry VIII have been

well

enough

compared
tmly or
tion,

to those of Constantius.

Of

this

emperor x\mall

mianus Marcellinus observes, he was cruel toward


falsely

who

were charged

Avith

treason.

Any
;

accusahis sub-

how
I.

slight soever, served to ruin

man

and

jects

were so

far

from daring to

tell

their dreams, lest they

Vol.

191
>iioul{l

IMOIOIRS OF
have
o.

treasonable interpretation put


to

upon them,
If

that

fliey

dared not

oxen

they ever slept.

we except

the history of Henry's own. family, perhaps no stronger


instance occurs in his reign of the justice of the comparison, than
liis

sacrifice of Sir

Thomas More.

Neither irritated by persecution, nor dismayed in the


least degree

by kingly power,
maintained

in

a mild though firm


;

man-

ner, the knight

his resolution

and the accus-

tomed facetionsness of
in his

his disposition forsook

him not even

way

to prison.

It

was

IMore's

custom to wear a golden chain around


it

his neck,

and he now had

on as usual.
this

His conductor
to

to the his

Tower advised him to send wife, or to some of his children.


I
not
;

ornament home
sir,

Nay

replied

More,
ene-

that will
mies,

for if I were taken in the

feld

by

my

I would
tl^e

they should somewhat fare the better for me.

At

Tower-gate, the porter demanded of

More

his

upper garment.
was very sorry
it

The knight presented him


was no
better.

his cap,

and

"Wit was, however, not

current with Cerberus,

who soon

disrobed the knight of his

gown.

"When !More was conducted

to his

appartment by the

lieutenant of the Tower, he called his servant

John Wood,

who was appointed

to attend him,

and who could neither

read nor write, and brought him to his oath before th

Sm
lieirtenant, that if

T.

MORE.

195

he should witness that the knight spoke

or wrote against the king, the council or the state, he should

immediately declare

it

to

the lieutenant, that


to the council.

it

might be

communicated without delay

The

lieutenant, adds

]\Ir.

Roper, soon afterward acknow-

ledged his former obligations to More, and his wish


to afford

now

him good

cheer

but since by so doing he should

hazard the king's displeasure, he trusted More would accept his good will and such poor cheer as he dared to
ford him.
lieve, as
'

af-

Mr. Lieutenant,' replied More,

'

verily be-

you may, so are you

my

good friend indeed, and

would, as you say, with your best cheer entertain


the which I most heartily thank you
self
:

me

for

And
cheer

assure your;

Mr. Lieutenant,
I so do,

do not mislike

my

but when-

soever

then thrust me out of your

doors.'

Such indeed was More's mind, that

his

punishments, as

they were called, only afforded him opportunities for the


display of that superior patience and constancv, which the
ordinary occurrences of
preciate.
life

were hardly

sufficient

to

aj)-

^Vhen he had been


her father.

in the

Tower about a month, Mrs.

Roper by earnest entreaty


visit

at length obtained permission to

After some time spent with her in prayer,


'

according to his usual custom,

I believe

among

other things), that the}'

who have

Meg (said More, put me here ween


But
I assure thee

they have done

me

a high displeasure.

Cc

]9G

MEMOIRS OF
faith
a\

on m}'
for

mine own good daughter,


and ye who be

if it
I

had not been

my

ifc

my

children,

would not have


in as

failed long ere this, to

have closed myself


But, since I

straight

room and

straighter too.

without mine
will

own

desert, I trust that

am come hither God of his goodness


his gracious iielp
I

discharge

me

of

my
in

care,

and with

supply

my

lack

among

ye.

I find

no cause,

thank

God

INIeg, to

reckon myself

worse case here than at home.


Avanton, and setteth

For methinketh,

God maketh me a

me on

his lap

and dandleth me.' *

In the course of his imprisonment, INIore seems never


for a

moment

to

have

lost

sight of the
to.

end which
that he

it

was

probable he should
irritable habit

come

He owns

was of an

by nature, and weak against bodily suftering. Yet the whole force of his mind appears to have been exerted at this time, in preparation to meet his fate with
constancv and composure.
gi-ees

He

withdrew himself by de-

from every Avorldly

interest,

and dwelt with daily

in-

creasing delight on his hope of a better state.

Tliough few

men have
in iheir

ever had

more

substantial ground for confidence

own

merits, he looked forward to the great judghis

ment with trembling, but with every hope from


mercy and the merits of
effects of his

Maker's

Christ.

We

shall find that the

endeavours, even to

human

eyes, were

won-

derful

that no

man

ever overcame worldly suffering in the


fate with less

end more completely, or met so severe a


of the stroke.
Roper.

dread

SIR T.

MORE.
in
tiie

197

Looking out of

his

window
affair

Tower one

da}'

when

Reynolds, a father of Sion, and three monks, were leading


to execution,

on the

of the kind's marria2;e and su]\Ieg,'

premacy,

'

Lo
'

dost thou not see

he exclaimed to

his daughter,

that these blessed fathers be

now

as cheer-

fully

going to their deaths as bridegrooms to their marriage.


sec,
is

Wherefore thereby mayst thou


ter,

mine own good daughbetween such as have

what a great difference there

in effect spent all their

days in a straight, and penitential,

and painful

life

religiously,

and such

as

have

in the world,

like worldly wretches, as thy

poor father hath done, con-

sumed

all their

time in pleasure and ease licentiously.


their long-continued life in

For

God, considering

most sore and

grievous pennance, will no longer suffer them to remain

here in this vale of misery, but speedily hence taketh them


to the fruition of his everlasting deity.
father,

Whereas thy
most

silly

Meg, who

like a

wicked

caitiff
life

hath passed forth


sinfiilly,

the whole course of his miserable

God,
>

thinking him not worthy so soon to


felicity,

come

to that eternal

leaveth

him here yet

still

in

this world, farther to

be plagued and turmoiled with misery/ *

Secretary Cromwell

came

to

More one day


us,

in the

Tower-

from the king, as Mr. Roper informs


great friendship for the knight, told

and pretending
his

him that

majesty
his

would be good and gracious to him, and not trouble


have cause for scruple.

conscience in future with any matter wherein he should

But More understood Henry and


* Roper i

19S

MEMOIRS OF
court too well, to
;

liis

fix

the smallest reliance on such a prolittle

mise

and

to

prove what

credit he attached to

it,

he

wrote these verses so soon as Cromwell was gone, Avhich ard


])reberved in his English woiks.

Ey

fluttering Fortune, look tliou ne'er so fair

Or

ne'er so pleasantly begin to smile,

As though thou wouldst


During

my

ruin all rep.tir

my

iifi'lliou sliult
I

me

not iK-guile.

Trust shall
"Ilis

Gocl, to enter in a while

haven of heaven sure and uniform.


I for

Ever, alter thy calm, look

a storm.

Lady More
'

at length

procured permission to
in her usual worldly

visit

her

husband, and soon exclaimed


I

manner.

marvel that you, Avho hitherto have been taken for a


Avill

wise man,
filthy

now

so play the fool to


tluis

lie

here in this close

prison,
rats

and be content
;

to

be shut-up

among
his

mice and

when you might be abroad

at your libert}',

and with the favour and good-will both of the king and
council, if

you would but do

as all the bishops

and

best-

learned of this realm have done.

And

seeing

you have

at

Chelsea a right

i'air

house, your library, your galler}^ garall

den, orchard, and

other necessaries so

handsome about

you, where you might in the couipany of

me

your wife,

your children and household be merry,

muse what a God's

name you mean


ed her
liis

here

still

thus fondly to tuny.'

More

ask-

if his

present habitation was not as near heaven as


?

own

iiouse

And

since, if he

were buried seven years,


house, he should not
fail

and then rose and came

to his

own

SIR T.
to find

MORE.

199

some
him

therein
it

and

tell

who would bid him get out of doors was none of his, why he should love a house
its

which would so soon forget


ed, do yoii think we mai/

master ?
enjoy
it

How
?

long,

he addyears,

live to

Some twenty

she replied.
it

If you had said some thousand, answered More,


;

had been somezvhat

and yet he were a very bad merchant


in

who would put himself


sand years.
joy
it

danger
*

to

lose

eternity for a thouto en-

IIozo
to

much

the rather, if
!

we be not sure

one day

an end

It is possible

that the

good

lad}^

may have been an

in-

strument employed by the court, to endeavour at prevailing on her husband to meet the wishes of the kino.
least,

At

no attempt appears

to

have been spared, toward the

completion of an object which was evidently deemed of

no small importance.
Suffolk, Cromwell,

For, not long after the meeting al-

ready described, the chancellor, the dukes of Norfolk and

and others of the privy council, came


to confess the

to

More

at

two

distinct times, by all pollicies possible pro-

cto'ing him, saith

Mr. Roper, either precisely


it.

supremacy, or precisely to deny


times.

At

either of these

More wrote

confidentially to his daughter ISIargaret,


letters are preo-ive

describing to her

what had passed, and the

served in his Endish works.


best account

As

these letters

us the

we have of

the proceedings, they

are here,

presented to the reader.

Roper and More.

200

MEMOIRS OF

Our Lord

bless

you

nvj dearhf beloved

daughter

'

doubt not but, by the reason of the king's counsellors

resorting hither in this time, in which (our

Lord be

their

comfort!) these fathers of the Charterhouse and Mr. Rey-

nolds of Sion be

matters
trouble

now judged to death for and causes I know not), may hap
fear of

treason (whose
to

put you in

and

mind concerning
it
is

nie,

being here pri-

soner

specially for that

not unlikely that you have

heard, that I was brought also before the council here


self.

my-

have thought
;

it

necessary to advertise you of the


that,

very truth

to the

end

you should neither conceive

more hope than the matter

giveth, lest
;

upon another turn

it

might agrieve your heaviness

nor more grief and fear than

the matter giveth on the other side.

Wherefore shortly you

shall

understand, that on Friday

the last
in here

day of April
unto

in the afternoon,

Mr. Lieutenant came

me and

shewed me, that Mr. Secretary would

speak with me.

AA'hereupon I shifted

my

gown, and went


;

out with Mr. Lieutenant into the gallery to him

where I

met many, some known and some unknown, in the way. And in conclusion, coming into the chamber where his mistership sat with

Mr. Attorney,
I

INIr.

Solicitor,

Mr. Bedyll,

and them

i\Ir.
;

Dr. Tregonwell,
in

was

offered

to sit-down with

which

nowise

would.

'

Whereupon Mr. Secretary

sliewed unto me, that he

SIR T.

MORE.
by such
friends as hither

501

doubted not but that

I had,

had

resorted to me, seen the


ting of the parhament.

new statutes made at tJie last sitWhereunto I answered yea verily;


I

howbeit forasmuchas, being here,


with any people, I thought
it

have no conversation

little

need
I

for rae to

bestow

much
book

time upon them


shortly,

and therefore

re-delivered the

and the
in

effect of the statutes I never

marked,

nor studied to put

remembrance.
first
?

Then he asked me,


I

whether

had not read the

statute of them, of the

king being head of the church

whereunto

answered
it

yes.

Then

his mistership

declared unto me, that since

was

now by

act of parhament ordained, that his highness and

his heirs be,

and ever of

right

have been and perpetuall}'

should be, supreme head on earth of the church of Eng-

land imder Christ, the king's pleasure was, that those of


his council there

assembled, should
therein.

demand mine

opinion,

and what

my

mind was

'

Whereunto

answered, that
king's

in

good

faith I

had well

trusted, that the

highness would never have com-

manded any such

question to be

demanded of me, conand


truly,
;

sidering that I ever from the beginning well

from

time to time, declared

my mind

unto his highness

and
good

since that time, I said, unto


also, both

your mistership, Mr. Secretary,

by mouth and by writing.

And now I have


matters,

in

faith discharged

my mind of
titles

all such

and

neither
true,

will dispute kings'

nor popes'.
will be
;

But

the king^s

faithful subject

I am, and

and daily I pray for him


council.

and

all his,
I.

and for you

all

who are of his honourable

Vol.

505

MKMOIIIS OF
nil the realm.

ami for
tend
to

And

otherwise

than thh I never in-

meddle.

'

^Vliercunto Mr. Secretary answered, that he thought

this

manner of answer should not


;

satisfy

nor content the


full

kind's hiijrhness

but that his grace would exact a more


mistership

answer.

And

his

added thereunto, that the


rigour, but of

king's highness

was a prince, not of


tliough that he
his sul)jects,

mercy

and

]jity.

And
in

had found obstinacy at


yet

some time them


his grace
self,

any of

when he should
that,

find

at another time conformable

and submit themselves,


concerning mytake such conthe world again

would shew mercy.

And

his highness

would be glad to see


I

me
in

formable wa3's, as

might be abroad

among
'

other men, as 1 have been before.

Whereunto

shortly, after the


for
to

inward affection of

my

mind, answered,
in the

a very truth, that I would never meddle


have the world given me.
I

world again

And

to the

renmant of the matter


ing that
I

answered in

effect as before;

shew-

had

fully

determined with myself, neither to study


this

nor meddle with any matter of

world

but that

my

whole study should be, upon the passion of Christ and

mine own passage out of

this world.

'

Upon

this I

was commanded
a<2;ain.

to

go forth

for

a while,

and afterward called-in

At

"which time

Mr. Secre-

tary said unto me, that though I were a prisoner

condemn-

ed to perpetual prison, yet

was not thereby discharged

SIR T.

MORE.

203

of luine obedience and allegiance unto the kind's hishncss.

And

thereupon demanded me, ^vhether that

thought, that

the king's grace might not exact of

me

such things as are

contained in the statutes, and upon like pains as he might

upon other men


say the contrary.
king's highness

Whereto

answered, that I would not


said, tJiat likewise as the

Whereunto he

would be gracious

to

them whom he found

conformable, so his grace would follow the course of his

laws toward such as he shall find obstinate.


tership said farther, that

And
stiff

his

mis-

my demeanour
made

in that matter, Avas

a thing which of likelihood

others so

therein as

they be.

'

Whereto

answered, that I gave no


;

man

occasion to

hold any point, one or other


vice or counsel therein, one
clusion,
I

nor never gave any


or other.

man
for

ad-

way
I,

And

con-

could no farther go, whatsoever pain should

come
ject
Ins,

thereof.

lam, quoth
;

the king's true faithful suhhis

and daily bedesman

and pray for

highness and all


say none harm,

and

all the rcabn.

I do nobody harm, I

think none harm, but zcish everybody good.

And

if this

be not
to live.

enough

to

keep a

man

alive,

in

good faith I long not

And I am

dying already y and have, since I came


the
case,

here, been divers times in

that
!

I thought

to

die

within one hour.


for
it ;

And, I thank our Lord


when I saw
body

but rather sorry

the

I was never sorry pang past. And


;

therefore,

my

poor,

is

at the king's pleasure


I

would (Jod

my

death might do him good

d 2

504
'

Ml'MOIIlS

OF
in ?
to

After this Mr. Secretary aid, rccU, youjind no fault

that statute, Jind

you any

in

any of the other statutes af/cr

W'liercto I answered,

sir,

zchatsoever thing should seem

me

other than good in any of the other statutes, or in that

statute either,

ivould not declare

what fault I found, nor


liis

speak thereof.

AVhereunto

finally

niisterslii|)

said

full

gently, that of anything which 1 had spoken

there should

none advantage be taken.


tliat

And whether
taken, I

he said farther

there

was none

to be

am

not well rememberthe king's

ed

but he said, that report should be

made unto

highness,

and

his gracious pleasure

known.

'

^Vhereupon

was delivered again


;

to

Mr. Lieutenant,

-who was then called-in

and

so

was

I,

by Mr. Lieutenant,
here

brought again into


such case as
1

my

chamber.

And

am
I

I yet, in

was, neither better nor worse.


in the

That that
beseech,

shall follow, lieth

hand of God.

"\\

honi

to put in the king's grace's to his high pleasure; and

mind
in

that thing which

may be

mine, to mind only the weal

of
all

my

soul, Avith little regard of

my body
children,

and you, with


and
all

yours and

my

wife

and

all

my

our other

friends both bodily


I

and ghostly,
all,

heartily well to fare.

And
the

pray you and them


shall

pray for me, and take no thought

whatsoever

happen me.
it

For

verily

trust in

goodness of God, seem


shall

never so evil to

this world, it

indeed in another world be for the best.

Your

loving father,

THOMAS MORE,

KX^.

SIR

'J'.

MORK.

205

'

Our Lord

bless

you and

all ijours !

'

Forasmuch, dearly beloved daughter, as

it

is

likely,

that

you

either

have heard, or shortly

shall hear, that the

council were here this day

and that

was before them,

have thought
ter standeth.

it

necessary to send you word


verily, to

how

the matlittle dif-

And

be short, I perceive
the last.

ference between this time and

For, as far as I

can

see, the

whole purpose

is,

either to drive

me

to say

precisely the one way, or else precisely the other.

'

Here

sat

my

lord of Canterbury,

my

lord chancellor,

my
in

lord of Sutlolk,

my

lord of Wiltshire,

and Mr. Secre-

tary.

And

after

my

coming, Mr. Secretary made rehearsal,

whatwise he had reported unto the king's highness what


said

had been

by

his grace's council to

me, and what had

been answered by

me

to them, at
his

mine other being before


mistership rehearsed, in

them here
good
faith,

last

which thing
Avell,

very

as I

acknowledged, and confessed,


A\

and

heartily

thanked him therefore.

hereupon he added

thereunto, that the king's highness was nothing content nor


satisfied

with mine answer


1

but thought, that by

my

de-

meanour

had been occasion of much grudge and harm


and that
1

in the realm,

had an obstinate mind and an


duty was, being
in
his

evil

toward him, and that

my

his subject
al-

and so he had sent them now,


legiance, to

name, upon mine

command me
1

to

make

a plain and a ter,

minate answer, whether

thought the statute lawful or not;

206

MEMOIRS OF
I

and that

should cither acknowledge and confess

it

lawful

that his highness should

be supreme head of the church of

England, or

else utXer plainly n)y malignity.

'

Whereto

answered, that
utter.

had no

malignit\',

and

there-

fore I ct)uld

none

And
I

as to the matter, 1 could


;

none

other answer
his mistcrship

make than

had before made

which answer

had there rehearsed.

A'erv heavy I was, that

the king's highness should have an}' such opinion of me.

liowbeit

if

there were one

who had inlbrmed


unti'ue,

his highness

many
that

evil things

of

me

which were

to

which

his

highness for the time gave credence,

would be very sorry

he should have that opinion of mc the space of one


if I

day; howbeil
the

Mere sure, that other should come on


his

morrow

l^y

Avhom

giace should

know

the truth of

mine innocency,
Avith
it

1 should in the

meanwhile comfort myself


in

consideration of that.

And

likewise now, though

be great heaviness to

me

that his highness hath such opiI

nion of

me

for the

m hile, yet have

no remedy

to help

it

but only to comfort myself with

this consideration, that I

know
world.

very well that the time shall come, when

Cod

shall

declare

my

truth toward his grace before

him and

all

the

And

whereas

it

might haply seem to be but small


first

cause of comfort, Ijccause 1 might take harm here


the meanwhile,
in
this
I

in

thanked

Cod

that

my

case was such here

u)atter,

through the clearness of mhie own conI

science, that tht)ugh

might have pain,

could not have

liarm

for a

man

njay in such a case lose his head, and

have none harm.

For

was very sure that

had no cor-

SIR T.

MORE.

20r

rupt

afllection,

but that

hud alway from the beginning


first

truly used myself, looking

upon God and next upon

the king; according to the lesson which his highness taudit

me

at

my

first

coming

to his noble service, the

most

virtu-

ous lesson which ever prince taught his servant.


highness to have of

Whose
great
it.

me now

such opinion,
I said,

is

my

heaviness

but

have no mean, as

to help

But

only comfort myself in the meantime with the hope of the


joyful day, in which

my

truth toward
I

him

shall

well be

known.

And

in

this

matter farther

could not so, nor

other answer thereto I could not make.

'

To

this it

was

said,

by

my

lord chancellor

and Mr. Se-

cretary both, that the king might


to

by

his

laws compel

me

make

a plain

answer thereto, cither the one wa}^ or the


I answered, that I
his highness

other.

Whereto

would not dispute the


in

king's authority

what
For

might do
it

such a case
to

but

I said,

that verily, under correction,


if it

seemed

me

somewhat hard.

so were

me me
to

against the statute (wherein


I

my conscience save how my conscience giveth


tliat

make no

declaration), then

I
it

nothina; doino- nor no-

thing saying against the statute,

were a very hard thing


it

compel

mo

to say, either

precisely with

against m}^
-

conscience to the loss of


the destruction of

my

soul, or precisely against it to

my

body.

'

To

this

Mr. Secretary

said, that I

had ere
thieves,

this,

when

I Avas chancellor,

examined

heretics

and

and other
deserv-

malefactors

and gave

me

a great praise above

my

908

MEMOIRS OF

ing in that behalf.

And

he said that

I then, as

he thought,

and

at the leastwise bishops, did use

to

examine heretics

whether they believed the pope to be head of the church,

and used

to

compel them

to

make a

precise answer thereto.


it is

And
to

Avhv should not then the kins;, since


is

here that his grace

head of the church

here,

made compel men


a law

answer precisely to the law here, as they did then con?

cerning the pope

'

answered, and said that I protested that

intended

not to defend

my

part or stand in contention

but, I said

there was a difference between those two cases.

Because

that at that time, as well here as elsewhere through the

corps of Christendom, the pope's power was recognised for

an undoubted thing; which seemeth not


in this realm,

like

a thing agreed
truth in other

and the contrary taken

for

realms.

'

Whereto Mr. Secretary answered,


denying of
to

that they were as

well burned for the denying of that, as they be beheaded


for the
this
;

and therefore

as

good reason

to

compel them
other.
is

make

precise answer to the one as to the


in this case

"Whereto I answered, that since

man

not by a law of one realm so bound


is

in his

conscience,

where there

a law of the whole corps of Christendom to


is

the contrary, in a matter touching belief, as he

by a law
in

of the whole corps, though there Jiap to be

made

some

place a law local to the contrary,

the
man

reasonableness or
to precise

the unreasonableness in binding a

answer,

SIR T. :\IORE.
stantleth not in the respect or difFerenee

209

between heading
in

and burning; but, because of the ditFerence

charge of

conscience, the difference standeth between heading:


hell.

aud

'

Much was
in

there answered unto


lord

this,

both by Mr. Seto


rehearse.
1

cretary

and ray

chancellor,

overlong
me

And

conclusion, they offered

an oath, by which
tliiniis

should be sworn to

make

true answer to such

as

should be asked me, on the king's behalf concerning the


king's

own

person,

\yhereto I answered,

that

veiily
I

never purposed to swear any book-oath more,

wliile

lived.

Then they
that
;

said, tliat I

was very obstinate


it

if I

would refuse

for every
I said,

man
I

doth

in the star-chamber,

and everylittle fore-

where.
sight,

that was true.

But

had not so

but that

might well conjecture what should be part


;

of mine interrogatories
at the
first,

and

as

good

it

was

to refuse

them

as afterward.

'

Whereto

my

lord chancellor answered, that he thouo-ht


for I should see

guessed truth,

them.

And
I

so they were

shewn

me

and they were but twain,


statute
;

the

first,

whether

had seen the

the other, whether


not.

believed
I

tliat it

were a lawful-made statute or


the oath
;

\Vhercupon

refused
I

and

said farther

by mouth, that the


I

first

had

before confessed, and to the second


swer.

would make none anI

end of our communication, and was thereupon sent away.


the

Which was

Vol.

I.

'IW
'

SIE^rOIRS
In the

OF
it

communication betbre,
tliat I
I

was

said, that

it

was

marvelled,

stack so

much

in

my

conscience while at
I said,

the uttermost
I

was not sure

therein.

Whereto

that

was very sure that mine own conscience, so inlbrmed as

it is

by such diligence

as I have so long taken therein,

may

stand with mine


science of thcni
stat aut cadit, I

own salvation. I meddle not with the conwho think otherwise ; every man suo damno

am

no man's judge.

Tt

was

also said
in

unto me, that


it,

if I

had as

lief

be out
I

of the world as

as I

had there

said,

why
It

did

not

then speak even plain out against the statute?


well
I
I

appeared
AVhcreto

was not content to

die,
is,

though
I

said so.

answered, as the truth


living, as I

that

have not been a


ofl'er

man
;

of

such holy
lest

might be bold to

myself to death,

God

for
I

my

presumption

n)iglit sufter

me

to

fall

and

therefore
bcit if

put not myself forward, but draw back.


to
it

How-

God draw me
shall

himself, then trust I in his great


to give

mercy, that he

not

fail

me

grace and strength.

'

In conclusion, Mr. Secretary said, that he liked

me

this

day much worse than he did the


;

last time,

lor then,

he said, he pitied
not well.

and so

me much and now, he thought, I meant But God and I know both, that I mean well pray God do by me I pray you, be you and
!

mine other good

friends of

good cheer, whatsoever


me, but pray
for

fall

of

me

and take no thought


shall for

for

me, as

do

and

you and

all

them.
tender, loving father,

Your

THOMAS MORE,

KK^.

Sm
It xvas

T.

MORE.
Rich, then newlj

11

soon after

this that

made

the

king's sohcilor, Sir

Richard Soutliwell, and one Palmer,

servant to Cromwell, were sent to

More

to take his

books

from him.*

Tlie knight had

sometime previously,

saith his

great-grandson, begun a divine treatise of the passion of


Christ; but

when he came

to

expound the words

they laid

hands upon him and held him, these gentlemen took from

him

all

his

books, ink, and paper.

More hereupon

de-

voted himself wholly to meditation, and closed his chamber

windows.

And when

the lieutenant of the

Tower inquired

of him his reason for so doing,


the wares are gone the

More answered, xislien all He still, shop-windows may be shut.


and one of these scraps,
a pre-

however, contrived to procure scraps of paper, on which

he now wrote with a coal


cious jezoel, as

he

calls

it,

his great-grandson inherited.

It hath
this

been supposed by some,

tliat

Rich was sent on


if possible in

occasion with a view to entangle


;

More

dispute

and

if

nothing could

fairly

be deduced from their

conversation to the knight's prejudice, that the solicitor was


at

any rate

to have accused
it

More

falsely.

But a design of
upon our con-

this kind,

although

be by no means inconsistent with the

character of Henry's court, must

now

rest

jectures only, antl cannot be expected at this distant day to admit of tresh proof.

Certain

it is,

that while Southwell and

Palmer were pack-

ing the books, Rich, pretending familiar conversation with


* Roper.

Ee

21

'J

MEMOIRS OP
said to him, since he

More,

was learned

in tlie

law and

otherwise, uiight he put the (juestion to iiim, // there xvas

an act of parliament that the realm should take me for


zioiild

Icing,

not you take

mc for king
More,

Yes

sir,

replied

that zvould I.

I put
not

the case farther, said Rich.


all the

TVcre there

an act of

parliament that

realm should take me for pope, would


?

you then take me for pope

ISlore replied, the

parliament might well meddle with the

state of

temporal princes, but to answer the other case, he


this case.

would put
law that
say that

Suppose the parliament would make a

God
God

should not be God, would you then

Mr. Rich

were not

God

No

sir,

replied Rich, that would

not

since no parlia-

ment may make any such law.

Here, according to Mr. Roper, the conversation ended.

But Rich when

called

upon

at INIore's trial falsely reported,

that the knight rejoined

to this answer, no

more could the

parliament make the king supreme head of the church.

When More
had been
for

was arraigned at the King's-bench


in prison.

bar,

he

above a year

His bodily strength

had been materially impaired, having experienced returns


of the complaint in his breast, and

new

attacks of the

SIR T.
gravel and stone.*

MORE.

213

Weak
He was

and emaciated, he leaned on a


yet his couiiieadiice was

crutch Avhen he went to


firm

this trial,

and

cheerful.

tried,

probably by special com-

mission, before

Cliancellor Aiidlcy,
Chief-justice Fitzjanaes,
Sir

John Bildwin,
Richard
Leister,

Sir

Sir Jolia Port, Sir


Sir

John

Spilraan,

Walter Luke,

Sir

Anthony

Fitzherbert.

His jury, for their names too deserve to be recorded to


their infamy,

were
Thomas Palmer, Thomas
Peirt,

Sir
Sir

George Lovell,

Thomas Burbage,
Geoffrey Chamber,

Esqrs.

Edward Stockmore,
William Browne,
Jasper Leake,

Thomas
John

Billington,

^Gentlemen;

Parnel,

Richard Bellame,

George Stoakes.t

The indictment was


* Eng. works,

so long, that
p. 1434.

More

declared he could
^ More.

tH
scarcely

Mr.MOIRS OF

vemcmbcr
Ilis chief"

a tliml part of

what was objected against

him.*

crime was, his refusal of the oath as we


;

have already seen

wliich

was termed

ma/iciotis,
in

trriito7-ous,

ond diabolkal.

IJis

two examinations

the Towit, with

the declarations he then made, were adduced in proof of

the charge.

And

it

was

allesjjeil,

that he had written letters


;

to bishop Fisher, to bias

tliat

prelate likewise

for his anit

swers resembled those

made

l>y

More.

Upon

the whole,

was concluded, that the knight was a and


to the irahn, for

traitor to his

j^rince

denying the king's supreme

juristlic-

tion in ecclesiastical

government.

The reader who hath marked


reign, will already

the character of Henry's


result of this trial.

have anticipated the

For he needeth not


will

to be told, that this prince


;

made

his

a rule forjudges and even juries


aiul

that he sported with


;

law

common-sense on
his caprices

all

occasions
;

that

his

parlia-

ments followed
of Sir Tiiomas

with servility
all

and that they as

well as himself were lost to

sense of shame.

The

fate

More

is

a striking,

among many
truths.

other la-

mentable cxemplihcations of these horrid

After the indictment had been read to him, the duke of

Norfolk said to More, you


offended his
tjiajesty.

iee
is

now how

grievously you have

Yet he

so merciful, that if

you

will

lay aside your obstinacy

and change your


his highness.
* Pole.

opinion,

we hope

you may obtaiu pardon of

SIR T. IVrORE.

215

To

this,

continues the great-grandson, the stout champion


lords,

of Christ repUed, most noble thank your honours for


this

I have great But I mind I am

cause

to

your courtesy.

beseech Alin,

mighty God, that I may continue in the


his grace, unto death.

through

For the former part of More's defence we are indebted


to Stapleton,

from whose Latin we

will translate the knight's

words.

'

When

I recollect the length


is

of

my

accusation, and the


1

weight of what
that

objected against nie,

my
I

understanding,

my memory,
bodilj^

and

am apprehensive my power ot utto

terance, so

may
still

fail

me

in

making due answer

the w

Ik;!.-

am

affected

by the

weakness which

I iiave

suffered from

my

imprisonment.'

Here a

seat

was ordered

to

be brought the knight.

Ii

ing seated himself, he thus proceeded.

'

There be four
;

divisions, if I

mistake not, of

my

indict-

ment

which

I will

answer in order.

'

To

the FIRST, that I was averse to his majesty's second

marriage, I candidly own, I ever disapproved this marriage


to the king.

Nor am
I

I noAV inclined to say or think other-

wise of
science

it

than

have done, for the dictate of

my

con-

is still

the same.

This dictate I was neither inchned


bis majesty,

of

my own

accord to conceal frgm

nor ought

19
I to

MrMOmS OF
have clone so wlicn the
triilli

was domandecl of
this

me
it-

and no suspicion of treason can on


self to ine.

occasion attach

Mich

On tlie moment by jny

contrary. IxMn"- asked a (iue>li(jn of


prince, on which his lionour
hail
1

and the

tranquility of his

kingdom de|)endcd,

spoken with
I

more regard

to comj)liance Aviih

his wislies

than to truth,
I

should then with justice have been accused of what

am

now accused, of malevolence, wickedness,


*

treachery.

But even

for this fault of

mine,

if it

be a

fault in
it,

man
al-

to

speak the truth to


surt'ered se\ere

his prince

when he asks
I

have

ready

punishment.

have been proscribed

from
cci in

all

intercourse with mankind,

and continually innnur-

prison lor nearly hlteen months.

'

A SECOND
lor,

head of

my

indictment

is,

that

am amen-

able to punishuicit tor the violation of an act of parlianietit.

when
I

in

jnison, of n)y malevolence, Avicked-

ness, treachery,

sought to detract Irom the honour due to

his majesty as recognised


j)iij)!t

by that act

in

his

new

title,

szf-

htad

oil

earih of the church oj E/ighuuL

'

AVhat opinion did


in

utter regarding this act,

when

twice
his

questioned

piibon

by Mr. Secretary and others of


I

majesty's council, that

hould be said to have detracted

frou), or to lia\e denied, this

new authority?
in

would give

no

otlier

answer ihun, that the


nie,

act, just or unjust, pertain-

ed not to

who was dead

law, and was no longer

bomid

to

answer to statutes

A\liich 1

should never more use;

SIR T.

MORE,

217

yet that neither by word or deed had I ever done anything

derogatory to the act, and therefore I could not with justice

be condemned
jected to

for

a Jaw against which

it

could not be ob;

me

that I had either acted or spoken

that, re-

jecting every other care, I wished to turn

the time to
to

come

to the bitter passion of


this life.

my thoughts for my Saviour, and

my own
'

passage from

own

made

this ansAver.

But

maintain that

this

law or act was by no means violated by such answer, nor

any

capital offence

committed by

it.

Neither your laws,

nor those of the whole world, can criminate mere silence.

They

are

made for words and

actions;

God

alone can judge

of secret thoughts.'

Here the

king's counsel remarked, that More's silence


evil disposition

was a sure
ward

sign of his
;

of his malice

for

no man

in

and a certain proof the kingdom well-affected tothis act,

his majesty,

being interrogated as to

would

refuse to declare his opinion categorically.

'

My

silence,' replied

More,

'

is

neither a sign of any

evil

disposition in

me,
it

as his majesty

may know

b}-

many

proofs, neither doth

bear any conviction of a breach of

your law.

It is to

be taken for assent rather than dissent,


is

witness the lawyers' phrase, who

silent

seemeth

to consent.

As

your inference respecting the duty of a good subject from the example of all England, I am of opinion, that it
to

is

the duty of such a one, uliless he would be a bad chris-

VoL.

I.

218
tian at thf^

MEMOIRS OF
same time
tliat
;

he

is

a good

suliject,

to ol)cy

God

rather thafi

man

to

have more care of

his

conscience

and the preservation of


wliatever.
his

his soul,

than of any other thing


is

Especially when, which


is

certainly

my
1

case,

conscience

such, as to produce not the smallest of-

fence, no scandal,
ly athrni, that I

no sedition

to his 'prince.
this

For

solemn-

never opened

conscience of mine to

any mortal

living/

'

come now
1

to

the

third head

of

my

indictment.

By

Avhich

am

accused, against the constitution of


;

my

my

country, to have violated an act of parliament

having

maliciously endeavoured, wickedly contrived, and treacher-

ously practised, so saith the

indictment,

to

interchange

eight letters in prison with the bishop of Rochester, wherein I

persuaded him against


it.

this

law and incited him to op-

pose

earnestly desire that these letters


for they will either

may

be produced

and read,
since

condemn

or acquit me.
I will

But

you say

that the bishop burnt then),

not hesiof them

tate to repeat to

you what they contained.


aft'airs

Some

Avere full of our private

and related to our old and

intimate friendship.
ter of inquiry,

One
this
I

contained
I

my

answer to
in

his let-

what reply
on

had made
subject.

prison to the

king's counsellors

new

'Jo this I

made no

other answer, than that

he might
soul as 1

my own mind, and make-up his. So God love me and preserve my wrote him nothing else, and as God is my witness
had made-up

sill T.

MORE.
!

afS
is

this

and nothing

else

is

the truth
I

Thus

there nothing in
to

this instance neither

which

have conimittcd, contrary

law and worthy of death.

The FOURTH and last allegation against me is, when I was examined concerning this law in prison, I
'

that
said,

it

was

like

a two-edged sword
it,

who opposed

it

destroyed

his

body, who consented to

confounded

his soul.

From

which kind of answer, because the bishop of Rochester


likewise

made

it, it

was asserted that we had evidently con-

spired in the matter.

'

answer that

this expression

was more

qualified

on

my

part.

Namely, that
I

I said, in either case there

was danger,

whether
it

approved or disapproved the law, and therefore


a two-edged sword, which wielded cutteth both
in ex-

was
;

like

ways
deed.

and the condition seemed peculiarly severe

tending to myself,

who
7ny

contradicted

it

neither by word nor

These were
not.

words

how

the bishop answered I


it

know

If his reasoning agreed with mine,

hath arisen

from no collusion, but rather from our similar thouo-hts and


studies.

In short, ye ma}'
to

rest satisfied, that I

have never

spoken
though

any mortal

living against this constitution, al-

perhfijis

some

false reports

may have been made on

the subject to the king's most merciful majesty.'

Though no
word malice,

farther

answer was now made

to

More, the

saiih Ins great-grandson, Avas in the

mouth of

the whole court.

And

as a final proot of the knight's "uiit,

Ff

220

MEMOIRS OF
called, lo relate

Rich was now


the answer of
as reported to

upon oath the conversation


Mr, Roper hath preserved
occasion in his very words,

which we have already noticed.

More upon
him by

this

credible eye witnesses.

'

If I was a

man my
I

lords,' said the knight,

'

who

did

not regard an oath,


in this place,

needed

not, as

it is

well

known, stand
an ac-

and at

this time,
it"

nor in

this

case, as

cused person.

And
it

this

oath of yours Mr. Rich be true

then I pray that I never see

God

in the face,

which

would

not say were

otherwise, to win the whole world.'

Here More gave the court the true account of


versation with Rich in the
thus.

his con-

Tower

and then he proceeded,

'

In good faith, Mr. Rich,

am

sorrier for
shall

your perjury,

than for mine


ntither
to be a
I,

own

peril.

And you

understand, that

nor no

man

else to

my

knowledge, ever took you

man

of such credit, as, in any matter of import-

ance,

I,

or any other, would at any time vouchsafe to

com-

you know, of no small while have been acquainted with you and your conversation, who have known you from your youth hitherto, for
municate with you.
I,

And

as

we
can

long dwelt together in one parish.


tell (I

Where, as yourself
to say)

am

sorry

you compel me so

you were

esteemed very light of your tongue, a great dicer, and of

no commendable fame.

And

so,

in

your house at the

SIR T.

MORE.

221

Temple, where hath been your chief bringing-up, were you


hkewise accounted.

Can

it

therefore

seem
in so

likely

to

your honourable lord-

ships, that I

would

weighty a cause so unadvisedly

overshoot myself, as to trust Mr. Rich, a

man

of

me alway

reputed of

little

truth as your lordships have heard, so far

above
sellors,

my

sovereign lord the king or any of his noble coun-

that I

would unto him

utter the secrets of ray con-

science touching the king's supremacy, the special point

and only mark


which
I

at

my

hands so long sought-for, a thing

never did nor never would, after the statute there-

of made, reveal unto the king's highness himself, or to any


of his honourable counsellors, as
it

is

not

unknown unto

your honours, at sundry several times sent from his


person to the
this, in

owa
?

Tower

to

me,

for

none other purpose ? Can

your judgment ray lords, seem likely to be true

And

yet, if I

had so done indeed,


it

my

lords, as

Mr.

Rich hath sworn, seeing


liar talk,

was spoken but

in secret fami-

nothing affirming, and only in putting of cases,


it

without other displeasant circumstances,


be taken to be spoken inalidously
.

cannot justly

malice, there can be no otlence.

And where there is no And over this, I can

never think

my

lords, that

so

many
ful,

honourable personages,

many worthy bishops, so and so many other worshipas at the

virtuous, wise,

and learned men,

making of

that

law were

in that parliament assembled, ever

meant

to

have any

man

punished by death in

whom

there could be

222

MEMOIRS OF
;

found no malice
vialitia

taking malitia for malcvoleiiiia.


siu,
si

I'or if

be generally taken for


qiihi

no

man

is

there then

who
est.

can excuse himself;


ipsos
this

dixcrimus quod pcccatum


et

7wn hubemus, nosmct

scducemus

Veritas in nobis non


is

And moreover
By which

word

maliviously

in this

statute

material; as the term


cnir^sse.

/o/t/Tj/c is in

the statute o^ forcible

statute, if a

man

enter peaceably and

put not
lie

his adversaries out


^"oj-c/Y/y,

/b;"c/7>///,

it is

no

oti'ence
it

but

if

put them out

then by the statute


this

is

an

of-

fence,

and so

shall

he be punished by

term forcibh/.

'

Beside

this,

the manifold goodness of the king's high-

ness himself,

who
very

hath been so

many ways my

singular

good

lord,

and who hath so dearly loved and trusted me;


first

oven at

my

coming

into his honourable service,

to the dignity of his honourable to

privy council Vouchsafing

admit -me, and


liberally

to oflices of great credit

and worship

most

advancing

me

and

finally,

with the weighty

room of

his grace's

high chancellor (the like whereof he

never did to temporal

man

before), next to his

own

royal

person the highest

officer in this

noble realm, so far above


therefore, of his
;

my

qualities or merits able

and meet

own
the

incomparable benignity honouring and exalting


space of twenty years and more shewing

me by

his continual fa-

vour toward me; and


his highness, giving

(until at

mine own poor

suit it pleasdd

me

licence with his majesty's favour

to

bestow the lesiduc of


in

my

life

for the provision of

my
to

soul

the

service

of Cod, of his special goodness

discharge and disburthcn me), most benignly heaping ho-

SIR T.

MORE.

223
all this his

nours continually more and more upon me,


highness' goodness
I

say, so long thus continually

extended

toward me, were

in

my

mind,

my

lords,

matter sufficient

to convince this slanderous surmise,


fully

by

this

man

so wrong-

imagined ag

linst

me.'

Rich now desired that

his

companions, Southwell and'


his

Palmer, should be examined relative to


with More.

conversation
o'f

When

they had been sworn they either


in

them deposed, that being employed


knight's books as they

conveying away the


at-

had been ordered, they paid no

tention to the conversation which was passing.

The

jury, however, speedily found

More guilty
less'

and

the chancellor, More's immediate successor,


ing, as chief

was 'proceed^

commissioner, with no

hasty servility to

pronounce judgment upon him, when the knight observed,


that in his time
it

was customary

in

such a case, to ask the

prisoner before judgment,

what he could say why judgment

should not be given against him.

The

chancellor hereupon
to say
to

demanded of More
thus replied to him.

wiiat he
?

was able

this

in-

stance to the contrary

and More, according

Mr. lloper,

'

Forasmuch,

my

lords, as

this

indictment

is

grounded

upon an act of
of

parliainent directly repugnant to the laws

God and

his

holy church,

the

supreme government
temporal prince pre-

whereof, or any part thereof,

may no

sume by any law

to take

upon him,

as rightfully belonging

'

224

MEMOIRS OF
Rome, a
spiritual pre-eminence,

to the see of

by the mouth
earth,

of our Saviour
only to
see,
S'.

liimsclf,

persoually present

upon the

Peter and his successors, bishops of the same


preroj^ative granted
it is

by special

therefore, in

law,

among

christian

men,

insufficient to charge

any

chris-

tian man.'

The knight added, that as the city of London could make a law against an act of parliament which bound
whole realm, neither could
catholic church
statutes
this

not
the

realm

make a

particular

.law incompatible with the general law of Christ's universal


;

that

it

was contrary
for,

to the unrepealed
ecclcsia
et
il-

of the country,
sit,

by Magna Charta,

Anglicana, lila
l(csa
:

et liabeat

omnia sua jura integra

that

it

was contrary

also to tlie oath taken

by Henry
;

and every other


ziiorc

christian prince at his coronation

that

no

might England retuse obedience


its

to the see of
'

Rome,

than a child to
to the

natural father

for, as S'.

Paul said

Coiintliians,

I have regenerated ye
Gregory, pojie of

mij children in

Christ, so

might

S'.

Rome
my

(suice

by

S'.

Augustin, his messenger,


faith),

we

first

received

the

christian

of us Englishmen tiuly say, ye are

children, be-

cause

have, under Christ, given to ye everlasting salvation,


better inheritance than

afar higher and


can leave

any carnal father

to his children,

and by regeneration have made ye

spiritual children in Christ

The

chancellor here repeated the old remark, that since

the bisliops, universities, and best learned had subscribed

SIR T.
to the act,
it

MORE.

225

was

wonclcit'ul

that he alone would oppose


it.

them

all

and argue

so strongly against

'

If the

number of bishops and


More,
'

universities be so

mateit,

rial/ replied

as

your lordship seemeth to take


lord,

then see

I little

cause,

my

why

that thing in

my

con-

science should

make any

change.
this

For

nothing doubt,

but

that,

though not in

realm,

yet in

Christendom

about, of those well-learned bishops and virtuous

men who
of your

be yet

alive,

they be not the fourth part

who be

opinion therein.

But

if I

should speak of those

who be
I

dead, of
very sure

whom many
it is

be

now

holy saints in heaven,

am
the

the far greater part of them, who,

all

while they lived thought in this case that


think.

way which

now

And

therefore

am

not bound,

my

lord, to con-

form

my

conscience to the counsel of our realm, against'

the general counsel of Christendom.'

The
justice,

chancellor at length asked the opinion of the chiefif

the indictment were sufficient.

Fitz-james re-

plied with his usual oath,

my

lords all, by S'. Julian, J

must

needs confess, that if the act of parliament be not unlawful^


then
is

the indictment in

my

conscience good.

An
that
;

answer
it

upon which More's great-grandson remarketh,

re-

sembled that of the Scribes and Pharisees to Pilate

if this

man

were not a malefactor^ we would never have delivered

him unto you.

The
Vol.

chancellor
I.

now proceeded

to

pronounce the usuiU^

S26

MEMOIRS OF
of" liani;ing, lialli

sentence

chawing-,

and

(luarU-riui;

loi-

wliicli

llcniy VI 11

been pronounce<l by Paulus Jovins, a se-

cond
fices

Plialaris.

In consideration, however, of the high offilled,


;

which More had


/W/t'flf//i>-

this

sentence was afterwaid


still

mitigated to

a sul>iect which

afforded
G.td

the

undismayed knight an opportunity of


he
said, that the h'nts; slionld use
ant/
all

jesting.
siicfi

forlr'id,

more

inero/ unto

unt/

of mji fiunuh^ and

God

/dess

nnj posferifi/

from such

yardons.*'

If

we may

credit

Stapleton, ^Joic said after his judg-

ment was
ly

passed, that since he stood


to disburthen
his

condemned, how jnstlie

God knew,

conscience

would now

freely

speak what he thought of the late proceedings.


state

When
was

he perceived that the

of

this

kingdonj retpiired the

investigation "v^hence the

power of the

Roman

pontiff

derived, he directed

his'

attention and study for seven whole


to this

years to the subject.

But

day could he never

dis-

cover in any learned writer approved by the church, that

a layman ever had been, or ever could


church.

l)e,

head of the

Tiie chancellor

is

said here again to have remarked, that

the knight arrogated to liimself

more wisdom and

integrity

than the whole realm beside


plied, that against

and More again

to have reijun-

one bishop he could name him an


all

dred, and against one realm the consent of


for

Christendom

more than a thousand

years.
More.

]>ioro

Sir Thomas, exclaini-

SIR T.

MORE/

227

ed the duke of Norfolk, you shew your malice; to which

More answered,

that he only discharged his conscience.*

The commissioners now


ing, if

offered ]\Iore a favourable hearoffer in his defence.

he had anything farther to

'

More have

not to say

my

lords,' replied
S'.

the knight,

'

but that, like as the blessed apostle

Paul, as

we read

in the

Acts of the Apostles, was present and consented to


S'.

the death of

Stephen, and kept their clothes who stoned


saints

him
in

to death,

and yet be they now both twain holy


tlierc

heaven, and shall continue


so
I verily trust,

friends

together for

ever

and

shall therelbre right hearti-

ly pray, that

though your lordships have now here on earth

been judges to

my

condemnation, we may yet hereafter


to everlasting salvation.j-

in

heaven

all

meet together,

Tlius did the knidit receive the sentence of


tion with that equal

condemna-

temper of mind
o[' life
;

v.hicli

he had discover-.

ed in either condition wholly to prepare


little terrible

and

lor death,

now devoted himself which we shall find proved


Jie

to him.

Sir "William Kingston,


(as

tall,

strong,

and comely knight


friend, athis re-,

Mr. Roper

calls him),

and Mora's very dear

tended the knight, as constable of the Tower, on


turn thither.

At

the Old

Swan, with a heavy

heart, tears

running down his cheeks, he wished


More.

More

farewell.

t Roper.

g 2

^ifS

]\[t:.MOIRS

OF
'

'

Sir

Thomas More,'

continues Mr. Roper,

seeing him
as he could,

so sorrowiiil, comforted
saying, good

him with

as

good words

Mr. Kingston,
For I
will

trouble not yourself, but be of

good cheer.
ZiiJ'e,

pray for you and

my good

lady your
zmc

thai we

may meet

in heaven together, zchere


ever.

shall

be

merry for ever and

Soon afterward.
ashamed of myself,

Sir

AVilham
said, in

Kingston, talking with rae of Sir


goodfaihli

Thomas More,

Mr. Roper I

zcas

that, at

my

departing from your father, I found


his so .strong,

my

heart so feeble, and.

that he was fain

to

comfort me, who should

rather have comforted him.'

A
the

scene 3ct more tender occurred before the knight

reached the Tower, and which a])|)earcth not unworthy of


artist's

jiencil.

IJis

affectionate daughter Margaret,

fearing that this would be her last opportunity of seeing

her dear father in this world, awaited his coming, at the

Tower-wharf, and on

his

approach, pressed forward to him

with an ardour nearly frantic, which neither the crowd nor


his

guards could restrain.


his

Having reached him, she clung


pleased with her manner, and

round
filial

neck and kissed him, with the utmost ardour of

affection.

More seemed

blessed and comforted her.

After she had gone from him,


re-

she was again seized with the same enthusiasm, and

lumed once more


the tears of

to rc-act the

same tender

scene,

amid
it

many

of the spectators.

'Jhe knight's son,

appears, also prrsentrd hinreelf to his father and asked his


blrssing.*
Roper an

More.

SIR T.

MORE,

229
his

Between Mores condemnation and the execution of


sentence, about a
prayer,

week intervened
to his

which he passed

in

and

in

such disciphne as

his

persuasion induced

him

to beheve
his usual

would tend

acceptance with his Maker.*

Yet

facetiousness in worldly affairs forsook


crisis/

him

not even at this awful

A
ters

light-headed courtier, as More's great-grandson calls

him, having come to the knight, not to talk of serious matbut to urge him
to

change

his

mind. Sir Thomas, wearied


last replied

by

his

impertinence and importunity, at


it.

I have

The report of this soon reached the king, and More was commanded to explain himself. The knight now
changed

rebuked the courtier


spoke
in jest
;

for troubling his

majesty with what he

his

meaning he

said was, that whereas he

purposed to have been shaved, that he might appear as


usual at his execution, he had
his

now changed

his

mind, and

beard should share the fate of his head.

Two

of More's

last letters, written

with a coal, are pre-

served in the volume of his English works.


in Latin, to

The former

is

Mr. Anthony Bonvyse, a

rich merchant,

who

appears to have been an old and constant friend of the


knight,

and of whose kindness


;

this

is

his last grateful ac-

knowledgment
friistra fecero

adding after his signature Thomas Morus,


adjiciam tuus,

si

nam

hoc jam nescirc non potes


talis

qutim

tot benejiciis emeris,

nee ego nunc

sum

tit

rcferat

cujus sim.

The

latter, to his

daughter IMargaret, was writ-

* See More.

'230

.MK.MOIRS
o''>

Of

1335.

ten on July
anil
is

1535, Ihc very day before his execution,

here presented to the reader.

Sir

Thomas More

to ^[rs. lioper.

Our Lord

bless yovi
little

good daughter, and your good husall

band, and your


ren,

boy, and

yours
all

and

all

n)y ehdd-

and^U my

god-eliildren

and

our jiiends.

'

Recommend me when you may

to

my

good daughter
!

Cicily,

whom

beseech our Lord to conil'ort

and

send

hei

my my

blessing,
1

and

to

all

her children, and


;

pray her to
coni-

pray lor me.


tbrt

send her an handkerchiel


!

and God

good son her husband

'

]\Iy

good daughter Daunce hath the picture

in

parch;

ment which you delivered me Irom my Lady Coniers her name is on the back side. Shew her that 1 heartily pray her, that you may send it in niy name to her again, for a
token from

me

to pray for

me.

'

like special well


1

Dorothy Coly.
this

pray you be good

unto her

would wit whether


I

be she

whom you

wrote

me

of? If not, yet


in

pray you be good to the other, as

you may
Aleyn
.

her atHiction, and to

my

god-daughter Joan

too.

Give

her,

pray you, some kind answer; lor


day, to pray you be good to her.

she sued hither to

me

this

'

cumber you, good Margaret, much

but

v.ould be

SIR T. MOKiJ.

r^I

sorry
S'.

if it

should

lie

any longer than lo-niorrow.

For

it

i.^

Thomas even, and the Utas morrow long I to go to God,


convenient for me.
better than
terly love
I

of S'. Peter; and therefore toit

were a day very meet and

never liked your manner toward


kissed

me

when you

me

last; for I love

when daugh-

and dear charity hath no


Farewell
all

leisure to look to world-

ly courtesy. I shall for

my

dear child and pray for me; and


friends, that
for

you and
I

your

we may
cost.

merrily

meet

in

heaven.

thank you

your great

'

send
;

now
I

to

my
I

god-daughter Clement her algorism

stone

and

send her, and

my

god-son, and

all hers,

God's
re-

blessing

and mine.
to

pray you, at time convenient,

commend me

my
!

goodson,

John More.
him and
I

I liked well his

natural fashion.

Our Lord
to

bless

his

good wife

my
his

loving daughter

whom
if

pray him be good, as he

hath great cause; and that

the land of mine


sister
all

come

to

hand, he break not

my will concerning his


:.'
'

Daunce.
that they

And
shall

our Lord bless Thomas and Austin* and

have/

'

'

For the reasons which he


was that fixed upon
iiig

gives in this letter,

it

was pro-

bably at More's particular request, that the following day


for his execution.
6'^

Early in the morn-

of Tuesday July
to

1535, his friend Sir

Thomas Pope

came

him

Avith

a message Irom the king and council,

* John More's children.

293
that he sliould
suflfcr

MEMOIRS OF
death on that mornnig before nine of

4he clock, and

tluit

he might prepare himself accordingly.

Mr. Pope,'

saitl Sir

Thomas,

'

for

your good tidings

lieartily

thank you.

have been alway

much bounden

to

the king's highness for the benefits and honours which he

hath

stilj,

from time to time, most bountifully heaped upyet more bounden

on me.
ting

And

am

1 to his grace, for

put-

me

into this place,

where

have had convenient time

and space to have remembrance of


help

me

niost
it

highness, that

my end. And, so God of all, Mr. Pope, am I lx)vinden to his pleaseth him so shortly to rid me from the
And
therefore will
I

miseries of this wretched world.


fail,

not

eainestly to pray for his grace, both here

and

also in

the world to come.'

'

The

king's pleasure

is

farther,'

added Pope,
words.'

'

that at

your execution you

shall not

use

many

'

Mr. Pope,' replied More,


his grace's pleasure
;

you do

well to give

me

warning of

for otherwise, at that time,

had

purposed somewhat to have spoken, but of no matter


his grace, or any, should

wherewith
ofi'ended.

have had cause to be

Nevertheless, whatsoever I intended, 1

am

ready

obediently to conform myself to his grace's

commandment;

and

beseech you, good Mr. Pope, to be a

mean
at

to his
burial.'

highness, that

my
is

daughter Margaret

may be

my

'

The king

content already,' said Pope, that your wife

SIR T.

MORE.
friends, shall

233

and children, and other your be present


thereat.'

have hberty to

'

O how much
!

beholden

then,' said

More,

'

am

unto

his grace,

who unto my poor

burial vouchsafeth to

have so

gracious consideration.' *

It Avas not without reason that Henry's

command,

he

should not use

many

words,

accompanied the message of

death.

He was

not ignorant of More's ability as a public


great his authority was

speaker, and

how

among

the people.

He was

sensible too of the provocation


;

which he had given

his prisoner

and, judging the knight's temper by his own,

he feared that he should be treated with the most vindictive

and

offensive freedom.

But the subject on


;

this

occasion

proved too good


serves to

for his prince

and the circumstance only

add

to our

contempt of Henry's conduct.


leave of More,

Pope now took


from
tears.

and could not

retiain

Quiet yourself good Mr. Pope,' said More,


;

'

and be not
and

discomforted

for 1 trust that

each other

full merrily,

we where we

shall shall

once in heaven see be sure to


live

love together in joyful

bliss eternally.'

More now put-on


lieutenant of the

his

best clothes

which,

when

the

Tower saw, he advised him


Roper.

to take

them

Vol.

I.

554

MEMOIRS

(3F

off again, saying he was but a rascal

who

sliould

have

Ihcm.

AVhat. Mr. Lieutenant,' said the knight,


rascal
1

'

shall I

account
bene-

him a
fit?
it

who

shall

do

me
it

this da}' so singular a

Nay,

assure you, were

cloth of gold I should think

well

bestowed on him, as

S'.

Cyprian did, who gave

his

executioner thirty pieces of gold/

'J'he

lieutenant, however, persuaded

him

to re-change his
left to hinj,

<]ress.

Yet, of the

little

money which was

the

knight sent his executioner an angel.*

At the appointed
by

time, he

was conducted from


tlie

his prison
;

the lieutenant of the Towei' to

place of execution

his

beard bting long, ?ays his great-grandson, his face paie


lean, carrytng in his

and

hands a red

cross,

casting his eyes

often toward heaien.


last,

Yet

his facetiousness

remained to the

of which three instances are related to have passed,

even uj)on the scaftold.

On
Avas

ascending

this structure,
;

be

Ibund

it

so

weak

that

it

ready to
see

fall

upon which he
and for my
so pru-

said to the lieutenant,

I pray

tm

tip

safe,

coming donn
tJently

let

me

shift

for myself

As Henry had
time,

imposed

silence

upon him

at this

More only

desired of his spectators that they would pray for him, and

bear witness that he there suflered death in and for the


faith of the catholic church.-f-

Roper.

Roper.

SIR T.

MO [IE.

233

This said, he knelt, and repeated a psahn with grcatdevotion


;

perhaps the 51", the

56"",

or the

57'^.

lie then

rose cheerfully,

and the executioner asking


said, thou wilt do

his forgiveness.

More

kissed

him and

me

this

day a greatto

er benefit, than ever

any mortal man can be able


man, and be not afraid
;

give me.
office.

Pluck-up thy

spirit,

to

do thy

My

neck

is

very short

take heed therefore that thou strike


\A

not awry, for saving thy honesty.

hen he

laid his

head
he

upon the

block, he desired the executioner to wait


his hedixd, for that

till

had removed
'

had never committed


adds

treason.

So with great
'

alacrity

and

spiritual joy,'
fatal

his great;

grandson,

he received the

blow of the axe

which

no sooner had severed the head from the body, but

his soul

was carried by angels


decay/

into everlasting glory,

where a crown

of martyrdom was put upon him which can never fade nor

More's behaviour in

this

last

scene hath been censured

by some
stoic

as hght

and indecent, and partaking more of the

than of the christian.

have allowed that that

him on

all

occasions,

it

The more candid, however, manner having been so natural to was not peculiar upon this but
;

proved that death by no means discomposed him, and could


not even put him out of his ordinary humour.

His head remained for some time fixed upon a pole on


London-bridge, until the piety of his daughter Margaret

found an opportunity of purchasing


preserved
it

it.

She

is

said to
its

have
inter-

in a leaden box,

and

to

have ordered

Hh

256

MEMOIRS OF
o-wn bod} in
tlie

meut with her


adjoining
in the
8'.

Roper-vault, under a chapel


Ilislx)dY

Dunstan's, Canterbury.*
S'.

was buried a tomb

chapel of

Peter

in the

'J

ower, probably near bishop


himselt"

Fisher,

who,

like

More, had appointed

in

his lifetime, Avhich his

body never occupied.

Some

of our

antiquaries have asserted that More's

body was afterward


;

removed

to Chelsea

by

his

daughter Maigaret

but this

is

by no means
jirobable for

satisfactorily

made

out,

and appeals

to be im-

more reasons than one.


More and Wood-

SIE T.

MORE.

237

CHAR
jinecdote.
. . .

VI.

Queen Ann and Cranmer indolent


.
.

in

More's

caitse.

Effects of More's execution.

Sentiments of the Emperor Charles,


.
. .

Cardinal Pole, and Paulus Jovius.

Morels

religion, bigotry, i^c,

.... Not so extravagant as some, in his notions of the papal power.

.... His propensity

to jesting,
. .

and

witty sayings.

His behaviour
ivhile

at his death natural.

His

disinterestedness,
. . .

and

integrity

chancellor,

and

virtue as a patriot minister.


.
.

Queen Catharine's

opinion of More.

His greatness of mind,


his family.
.
.

excellent temper,

and

good management of

Other

traits
. .
.

of

his

character.

.... His learning, modesty, and benevolence.


of Richard

His Utopia, History


. . .

HI, epigrams,

letters,

and
.

controversial writings.
.

urnet's character of him as a

zvriter.

The

editions
.
.

of More's
.

English and Latin works.


mily.
.

His personal

peculiarities.
. . .

His fa.
,

. .

Erasmus' encomium on More's house,


to

Mrs. Roper.
Basset.

Her

letter

her father in prison.


.
. .

Her daughter

More's

letter to GonelliLS.
.
.

character.

The death of Erasmus and view of More's remonstrances with him misrepresented.

his

1T

is

said that

when Henry

received the report of More's

execution he was playing at draughts, and


looking~on.

Queen Ann was


said ihou art the

Casting his eyes upon her,

lie

238

IIEMOIRS OF
;

cause of this maii^s death

ami soon afterward he


it is

left

the

game.
fell

He

betook himself,

added, to

his

chamber, and

into a

fit

of melancholy.*

^Vhatever credit
ers

who

assert

may be due to this anecdote, those writthat Ann was instrumental to More's execuit.

tion,

have probably been guided by

Yet she was

per-

haps rather an approver of the execution than an instigator


to
it
;

for

it is

certain that the


it

temper of her consort,

irrit-

able and impetuous as


stigation to lead
it

was, seldom stood in need of in-

to extremities.

After having opposed the divorce and second marriage,


INIore

became an opponent of what was then termed heof which

resy

Ann was

a patron.

If then only to

remove
to

an enemy

to herself

and her cause, we have no reason

doubt that the queen's voice was


tion,

in favour of the execu-

^ay,

if

she found the king at any time wavering in

his resolution, she


ill it,

may have endeavoured


to

to confirm
in the first

him

and thus have given ground


his uneasiness, to

Henry,

mo-

ments of

charge her with having caused

the knight's death. O'

Cranmer, as well as Ann, had, we know, very considerable influence on Henry's purposes
erted
all
;

and had they now ex-

this

influence,

they might perhaps have saved

More's

life.

But

it

is

pretty clear that the queen never

made such an

attempt, or Henry could not have reproach* More.

SIR

T.

MORE.
is

259

ed her

in this

manner; and

it

too probable that neither

her majesty nor the bishop used every endeavour in their

power

to

prevent an execution, Avhich fixes an indehble


all

odium upon

the reformers

who consented

to

it.

We have

at least very

ample testimonies remaining

to us,

that the sacrifice of


the limits of his

More made an impression, far be3'ond own country, and of deeper stamp than it
chiefly

hath often been in the power of an individual to leave,

who,

like

More, hath been conspicuous


life.

by

his vir-

tues in civil

]Many learned of Christendom, protest-

ants as well as catholics,


tyrant, nor hated

who

neither feared

Henry

as their

him from

private motives of animosity,

have animadverted strongly on the cruelty of the knight's


execution.

Upon
sea,

his friend

Dr. Lark, at that time rector of Chelis

More's death

said to have

had so much

influence,

that he soon afterward suffered death also, for denying the


king's supremacy.*

Mr. Roper

relates, that

when the emperor CharJes

re-

ceived intelligence of More's execution, he sent for Sir

Thomas
put

Ehott, the English ambassador at his court, and

said to him,

we understand that
and

the

king your master hath


Eliott re-

his faithful

gi-ave counsellor to death.


JVell,

plied,

he knew nothing of the matter.


it is

said the

em-

peror,

too

true.

And

this

uill u'e

say; that had ue

* More and Stow.

940

MEMOIRS OF

been master of such a servant (of whose doings ourselves havt

had
have

these
lost

many years no

small experience),

zse

would rather
lost

the best city of our dominions, than have

such a

worthy counsellor. This anecdote, Mr. Roper adds, Sir Tho-

mas

Eliott reported to himself, to his wife,

and

to other

friends.

CarcUnal Pole, to

whom

Italy,

notwithstanding his rela-

tionship to Henry, was the seat of safety, in his


unitate ecclesiastica, written
justification,

book pro

in

answer to Dr. Sampson's

by royal authority, of Henry's proceedings,


death to that of Socrates.

compares

^Slore's

I have

seen,

saith Pole, even the greatest strangers,

who never knew him,

never shared his favour, so much affected by his death, that

when they read


tears;

the history of

it,

they could not withhold their

and they wept at

the fatne only

of

his fate.

And I
I was
his

at this distance,

when writing
and

oj his death, although


ties,

not bound to him by any private

but loved and esteemed

him j-ather for

his virtue

probity,
is

and because I knew


that
blot

service to his country, yet

voluntary tears, which so


that

my witness impede my pen and


God

I shed

in-

my

letters,

I proceed

with

difficulty."^

Erasmus, without naming Henry, remarks on the occasion, Plato


lip

went unhurt by the iEginans, Diogenes by Phi;

of Macedon
for the

Antony

is

hated for the murder of Cicero

Nero

death of

Socrates.-f*

* Lib.

iii.

Ep'st- Nucer.

SIR T.

MORE.

2H

We

uill

add one, among many more similar testimonies,


in his

by Paulus Jovius,

own

words.

'

Fortuna impotens, et suo more

instabilis,

infaustaque

virtuti, si

unquam superbe

et

truculenter jocata est, sub

Henrico VIII nuper in Britannia immanissime desa^viit;


prostrate ante oculos Th. Moro,

quem

rex,

paulo ante,

praeclarus, eximine virtutis admirator,

ad summos honores

extulerat, ut inde

cum,

fatali

oborta insania mulatus in

feram, crudeli

mox impetu

praicipitem daret,

quod

ipsius

furcntis tyranni nefariaj libidini, vir

omnibus

religionis at-

que

justitiae

numeris longe optimus atque sanctissimus, adu-

lari noluisset.

Dum

enim

ille

uxorem repudiarc, pellicem

inducere, filiamque (Mariam)


peraret,
reus,

magno probro

abdicare pro-

Morus,

scrinii

maglster, pietatis ac innocentiaj suae

causam ad

tribunal dicere coactus, impio judicio ita

damnatus

est, uti
;

latronum more, teterrimo supplicii ge-

nere, necaretur

nee fas esset dilacerata membra, propin-

quorum
piternam

pietate, sepelire.

Sed Henricus,

vel

hoc uno

fa-

cinore Phalaridis tiemulus, eripere


inusitati sceleris

non

potuit, quin

ad semin

memoriam Mori nomeu

Uto-

pia perenni constantia? laude frueretur/ *

The

features of More's character are too strongly


to permit us to
life,

mark-

ed and prominent,
the memoirs of his

have gone thus

far into

without being pretty fully acquaint-

ed with

it.

In a general view, however, of the biography


this,

of even so peculiar a character as


* Elog. doct.

some

traits will

be

tiror.

Vol.

I.

li

am
found to have
less

MEMOIRS OF
strongly impressed our attention as \vc

proceeded, than
closer view

tiic

weight and worth of them

may on

appear

to

demand
is

and we may here be

aliow^-

ed to devote a few pages to a n)ore particular review of


certain points in that which
tion.

under our present considera-

More's icligion naturally presents


feature on this occasion
;

itself as

a prominent

in reference to

which he hath
his faculties

been pronounced a \CTy

priest,

and that here

were so enveloped, as to render

him a weak and credulous

enthusiast.

The
little

assertion

may

perhaps, however, be allowed to be


]\I

hazardous, that

ore's

bigotry hath proved a


it,

foil

to

his character,
less interesting

and that without


on the whole

he might have appeared

in the

eye of posterity.

Born,

as

he had the misfortune to be,

in

an age of ignorance and

superstition, at the very


his ideas

dawn

of learning in our island,

of religion, as
|

Avell

as those of his contemporaries,


in

naturally

artock of the times

which he

lived.

And

to

those limes, and to the genius of the superstition in wliich

he had been educated,

Ave

may

very clearly attribute this

part ot the knight's chaiacter.

Erasmus

saith of

More

in

one place, that he was rather

superstitious than irrelgious,

and

in

another place, that he

was extremely remote Irom

all

superbtiuon.

SIR T.
It hath
tliat in his

MORE.

2^3

frequently been remarked of the knight also,

youth he was

free

from that degree of bigotry,


in years.

which grew upon him as he advanced

Yet we know
monkish

that such

was

his addiction early in life to

discipline, that

he wore secretly a

hair-shirt

next

his skin, frequently fasted, slept

on a bare plank, and some-

times even scourged himself.

These practices he continued


in-

even when he was chancellor, though, as Mr. Roper


forms us, he
zooiild

appear

like

other

men

in his apparel
his

and
sole

oiitzmi-d behaviour.

His daughter Margaret was

confidant in these peculiarities.

She was

in the habit

of

washing with her own hands

this

hair-shirt for her father,


his execution.*

and he sent

it

to her the

day before

'

His accustomed manner alway was,' saith Mr. Roper,

ere he entered into

any matter of importance,

as

when he

was

first

chosen of the privy-council, when he was sent am-

bassador, appointed speaker of the parliament-house,


chancellor, or

made

when he took any other


go
to

like

weighty matter

upon him,

to

church to be confessed, to hear mass

and be houseled.'

The great-grandson
fused to
stir till it

adds, that being once sent for by the

king upon urgent business while he was at mass,

More

re-

was over, saying he

inust Jirst serve

God

and then

the king.

^Vith which conduct, Ave are farthe;- in-

formed, that Henry had the merit to be pleased.


* Roper and More.

li 2

eu
The

MEMOius
private devotions of

or
as well at lionic as in his

More,
with

chapel, were

also observed

the

strictest

regularity.

His family and servants were re(|uired to participate in them


daily,
sions.

and with peculiar attention upon particular occaThese oliservances appear


to

have brought those

blessings

upon

his

household, to which the true piety of

them was

entitled.

marked good

forttine, saith

Erasmus,

attends the servants of that house.

And

his

biographers

have gone so

far as to assert, that the pra^'ere of the knight,

when

his favourite

daughter was at the point of death in

the sweating sickness, produced the liappy effect of suggesting to his miud a remedy, which very unexpectedly led
to the re-establishment of her health.

Although a part of More's piety may have been


pliance with the manners of the age,
it
is

in

com-

sufficiently eviTliis,

dent that he had a natural propensity to devotion.


with
all

the virtues of Christianity in

liis

deportment, gave
life.

a pleasing uniformity to his public and private


before
ligion,

And

we decide

that his austerity, under the notion of relet

derogated from his general good sense,


in

ns advert

once more to the times


surrection of letters,

which he

lived,

soon after the rescripture

when ignorance of

and

bi-

gotry

to

the catholic church had overspread the world.

More
tions
is,

inflicted not his

penances upon hiniself with the ablor wilful


all

surd view of

commuting them

vices

his

inten-

were certainly good, and

that

we have

to excuse
It
is

his

manner of complying

Avith

his religion.

true

that he appears to have had dilierent sentiments in his

SIR T.

MORE.

245
in-

youth when he wrote

his

Utopia, and we are nowhere

formed why he thought more superstitiously afterward


but we must remember that were there no shades
great character,
it

in this

would no longer be that of man.


it

Bur-

net observes of this conduct in More, that

can only be

accounted-for by ascribing

it

to the intoxicating

charms of

that relio-ion, Avhich can darken the clearest understandings

and corrupt the best natures.

Notwithstanding More's strong


king's

prejudice

against

the

supremacy, he was certainly not so extravagant as


in his notions of the

some were,
pope

papal power.

In

his

Con-

futation of Tindal he writes, that he never considered the


as a part of the definition of the church, but that he

defined the church to be the


all christian nations,

common known congregation of under one head the pope. Nay, he afis

terward atiirmeth that a general council

above the pope,

and that

there are orders in Chrises church by which a pope

may

he both admonished

and ametided, and hath been for


amendment
finally deposed

in-

corrigible

mind and
This
is

lack of

and

changed*
lif,

the very conclusion maintained by Wic-

and which was condemned by the council of Constance.


to have thought that a

More seemeth

pope was not of the

essence of the visible church, but that that church mio-ht


subsist without a pope,

under the government of provincial

patriarchs or archbishops.

* Eng. works, p. 615, 621.

246

MEMOIRS OF

The maxim of Horace


ridcntem diccre vcruni

Quid

vetat

was SO

stedfastly

embraced by More, that

his propensity to

jesting hath frequently been censured

by those, who had

evidently a very small portion of his wit.


niclers, Hall,

One

of our chro-

with more ill-nature than wit, hath even gone

so far as to call him on this account a wise foolish man, or a


foolish wise

man

which severe sentence occasioned the


in vindication

i'ol-

Jowing epigrams

of the knight.

Halle, tibi

Morus

stultus sapicnsque vidctur

Stultus crat

mundo ncmpc, Ueo


foolish
zcise.

sapiens.

Wise foolish,

To More
Lei earth

be

(illcs

given

(lie fool

despise
liini

His wisdom found

Jjeaven.

We

have the satisfaction

to learn

from a

letter

of his friend
jest

Erasmus, that More did not love an ill-natured


gave another person pain. he never lauglicd at
casions with so
his look his

w hich

It

is

also related of him, that


;

own jokes

but spoke on

tl)ese oc-

much

gravity, that lew could discover by


serious.

whether he was jesting or

The

witty sayings attributed to

More

Avould form an ex-

SIR
tensive collection, if

T.

MOIIK.
to

217

we attempted

embrace

all

of them

which are now extant.

An

instance or two, in addition to

those which have already occurred to our notice,

may

here

amuse the

reader.

When
that
ners.
it

one of the family of Manners said

nores mutant Mores,' the knight readily

More Jioretorted upon him,


to
'

was true

in English

lor

then

it

applied to Man-^

When
and the
ously,
arts.

a debtor to the knight, upon being asked to disthis life,

charge his claim, expatiated on the uncertamty of


inutility of

money in the grave, concluding pompmemento morieris, More answered him, memento Mori

When
tion, the

one of

his
his

friends brought

More an

ill-written
its

work, to receive

opinion of

it

previously to
it

publicaverse.
it

knight told hun gravely


his

would be better in
it,

The man took home


again to More.
what, for now
reason.
it is

book, versified

and brought

Yea marry,
rhyme
;

said the knight,


bejore,
it zc/as

now

it is

some-

neither rhyme nor

When
him
in

an arrogant fellow

at

Bruges had given

it

out that

he would aivswer whatever question could be proposed to

any

art whatever,
in

More caused

to be put-up
;

utrum

averia ca[jta

Withernamia sunt irreplegiabilia

adding,

that there was a person in the retinue of the English

am-


248
Mi:.M(>n{.s

or

bassador

who wouUl

dispute with him on the ijucslion.


to

These hiw terms were worse than Coptie


docio
;

the bragga-

who knew not what

reply to

make, and was laugh-

ed

at.

As

to the following anecdote

related

by

ISIore's great-

grandson, sitjidcs penes auctores.

of the early

From what wc have seen acquaintance of More and Erasmus, the cir-

cumstances do not appear to be very proijable.

It

is

reported that he

land, contrived that

who conducted Erasmus to EngMore and he should first meet in Lonfell

don, at the lord mayor's Udjle, neither of them knowing


the other.

At diimcr-time they
so shar])ly
aiit

into

argument, and
last

Erasmus was

opposed by More, that at


tu

he

exclaimed with some choler,

Morns

es

ant nidlus.

More

readily replied, ant tu es

Erasmus aut Diabolus.

This story hath also been related thus.


the lord mayor's table, word was brought
reigner inquired for liim.
lord

More being
him that a

at
fo-

As

dinner was nearly over, the

mayor ordered one of his officers to take care of the gentleman and give him what he liked best. The officer
took Erasnms into the lord mayor's
to eat oysters
cellar,

where he chose

and drink wine (drawn,

as the
to

custom then
saluted

was, into leathern jacks).

On coming

More he

him

in Latin;

More,

U7ide venis ?

y--

SUl T. MOllB.

-ij^

Erasmus,

Ex

inferis.

More,

Quid

ibi

agitur ?

Eras.

Vivis vescuiitur et hibunt ex ocreis.

More,
,

An
Aut

tu

me

noscis ?

X'-

'

.Eras.
More,

tu es

Morus aut

nullus.

Et tu

es

aut Deus aut Dcmo7i, aut incus Erasmus.

One

of More's ludicrous actions was, to employ a cut-

purse to rob a justice while he sat on the bench,

who had

expressed an opinion that none except careless fools could

be served

so.

More was
with

also delighted

whenever he found wit


Strype, who, as

in those

whom

he conversed.

we have

seen,

hath repeated more than he could have proved of the


knight's cruelty to the reformers, tells us, in his memorials,

he had read in an old manuscript, that More, examining


a protestant whose

name was
it.

Silver, told

him

in his jesting

way

silver

must be tried in thejire.

But
this

quicksilver, replied

the culprit, will not abide

With

ready answer, adds

Strype, the knight was so delighted, that he dismissed him.

And

the anecdote certainly proves, against Strype's

own

hypothesis, that More's cruelty was at least not such, as to

be propitiated with

difficulty.

Vol.

I.

Kk

250

MEMOIRS OF
last

More's behaviour in the

scene of

this lite,

hath been

censured by some as too hght and ludicrous lor the occasion.

But the

fact probably

is,

that

tliis

behaviour was so

natural to him, and the consciousness of his integrity gave

him such
less
tors.

satisfaction

and courage, that the scene was

even-

mournful to the criminal than to

many

of his specta-

M. de

S'.

Evremont dwells on the courage and conresolution, than in

stancy of Pctronius Arbiter in his last monjcnts, and thinks

he discovers

in

them more firmness and

the deaths of Seneca, Cato, or even Socrates.

Our own
so pleased

Addison hath observed on


with gaiety of

this,

that tf he

was

humour

in

a dying man, he might have found,


it

much

nobler instance of

in Sir

Thomas More.

This gi-eat and learned man,' observes that chaste and'


'

correct writer,

was famous

for enlivening his ordinary dis;

courses with wit and pleasantry


in

and, as Erasmus of
life

tells

him
and

an epistle dedicatory, acted


lie died

in all parts

like a se-

cond Democritus.
is

upon a point of

religion,

respected as a martyr by that side for which he suffered.


so conspicuous in his Pie maintained the

That innocent mirth which had been


life,

did not forsake

him

to the last.

same cheerfulness of heart upon the


to

scaffold,

which he used

shew at

his

table

and, upon laying his head on the

block, gave instances of that good

humour with which he


most ordinary ochis life,

had alway entertained


currences.

his friends in the

His death was of a piece with


in
it

there

was nothing

new, forced or affected.


liis

He

did not look

upon the severing

head from

his

body

as a circumstance

SIR T.

MORE.

251
in the disposition of

which ought
his

to

produce any change


as he died

mind

and

under a fixed and

settled

hope

of immortality, he thought any unusual degree of sorrow

and concern improper on such an occasion


thing in
it

as

had nois

which could deject or

terrify

him.

There

no
na-

great danger of imitation fi-om this example,


tural fears will

men's

be a

sufficient

guard against

it.

I shall on-

ly observe, that

what was philosophy


in

in this extraordinary

man, would be frenzy


of

one who

dotli not

resemble him

as Avell in the cheerfulness of his temper as in the sanctity


his life

and manners.'*

More was
up
did

charitable to the poor, he despised riches,

and
lay-

though he had opportunities, he had no inclination, to


for himself treasures

on

earth.

On

his

disinterested'

ness Mr.
it,

Roper

in this

manner expresseth

himself.

Thus
life,

by

his doings
all

throughout the whole course of his


travail

appear, that

his

and pains, without respect of any of


his,

earthly commodities either to himself or

were

only upon the service of God, the prince and the realm

wholly bestowed and employed.


ter

Whom

heard in his

lat-

time to say, that he never asked of the king for himself

the value of a penny.'

Of

his integrity

when

chancellor

we can have no
to

strong-

er proof, that that

Henry had nothing

allege

against
kino-

him; and we can hardlv entertain a doubt that the

would have embraced such an opportunity with alacrity


* Spectator, N. 349.

in

Kk2

iJi32

ME^fOlRS OF

.^lore's adversity,

had the knight aftoided him one.

Mi.

JRopcr rchites an instance or two of attempts to criminate

him

in this
fix

particuhir,

all

of which,

we

sluill

find, Scl'vctl

only to

more strongly the character of

his integrity.

He had made
as

a decree against Parnell at the suit of


gilt

Vaughan, and was accused of having received a


a bribe, of Vauohan's
wife.

cup,

Beino;

summoned

before

the council,

More

gravely confessed, forasmuch as that cup

was, long after the aforesaid decree, brought him for a new~
year's gift, he,
of,

upon the importunate pressing upon him thereto take


it.

of courtesy refused not

Here Lord Wiltshire,

i\nn Boleyn's father, exclaimed in triumph, Lo, did t not


teU ye

my

lords that

ye should find

this

matter true

More

desired their lordships, as they had heard him courteously


tell

one part of his tale, they


to

nould vouchsafe, of their ho-

nours indifferently

hear the other.

He

then declared, that


received the

although he had indeed with


cup, yet
fill

much

difficulty

imnicdiatcly thereupon he caused his butler to

it

with wine and he drank to the lady.

When

she had

pledged him, he gave her the cup again, that she migl)t
gi\e
it

to her

husband as a new-year's
though

gift

from him

and,

at his urgent request,


at last received
it.

much
wife,

against her will, she

Vaughan's

and other witnesses

present, confirmed his statement.

l\!rs.

Croker, a widow, for

whom
gift

with

much

difficulty

he

ii.id

made a

decree in chancery against Lord Arundel,

brought him for a new-year's

a pair of gloves coutain^v

SIR T.
tng forty pounds in angels.
zvere against

MORE.
Mistress, said

53

More,

since

it

good manyiers

to forsake

a gentlewoman's
;

nezi)-

year's

gift',

oni content to take


it.

your gloves

but as for your

money, I utterly refuse

Mr. Gi'esham

also,

having a cause depending in


cup, the fashion of which the
therefore ordered

chancer}^ sent

More a

gilt

linight greatly admired.

He

one of

his

own

cups, Avhich was inferior in beauty, yet superior in

value, to be brought to him,

and desired the messenger

to

present

it

to his master

on which condition alone he would

receive the other.

Of
*

More's confidence in his integrity, and his contempt'

of slander in his prosperity, Mr. Roper relates this instance.

The water

bailif

of London (sometime his servant) hearliberal--

ing,

where he had been at dinner, certain merchants


against his old master,

ly to rail

therewith, that he hastily

came

to

waxed so discontented, him and told him what

he had heard.

and authority

And zcerc I, sir, quoth he, in such favour uith my prince as you are, suc?i men surely
Wherefore I would
to their

should not be suffered so villainously and falsely to misreport

and slander me.


before you,

zvish

you io

call

them,

and

shatnefor their letvd malice to punish,

them.

More
by you

replied, with a smile,

rt/??/,

Mr. Watcrbailif
in God's

xvould

you have me punish them by whom I receive more


all

benefit

than

who

be

my jricnds? Let them

name

speak-

954
as lewdly as they
list

MEMOIRS OF
of mCy and shoot never
zc;hat

so

many

o/rozk^^,

at

me

as long as they do not hit me,

am I
it

the worse ?
little

But

if they should once hit me, then would

indeed a

trouble me.

Howbeit I
to

trust,

by God's help, there shall none

of them once be able


sure you

touch me,

I have

more cause, I

as-

Mr.

Waterbailif, to pity them, than to be angry with

them.

More appears
have attained

in fact, either

by nature or

religion, to

to so correct a conduct, that neither the


loss or

hope

pf profit or popularity, nor the fear of

of evil tongues,
all his

could allure or deter him in his duty.

In

fortunes,

good and bad, he seems

still

to

have enjoyed one and the

same

equabilitj'.

In

his

mind, no minister who was inno-

cent of a charge alleged against him, would treat his accusers with insolence or persecute

them

Avith

power.
it,

In-

stead of exercising his authority,

when he had

in crush-

ing or even silencing those

who opposed

or slandered hini,
re-

he thought, that when


ceived

their arrows did

not hit him he

more

benefit

from them than from the caresses of

his friends.

And

here let us pay the tribute of respect so justly due

to More's early

and disinterested pubhc virtue

as a patriot

minister.
abilities in

In him

we have an

instance of a

man

of the

first

the kingdom, who, without patrimony or any

other subsistence than that derived from his profession, had


the courage and integrity to oppose the measures of the

king and his ministers, when he deemed those measures

SIR T.
prejudicial to his country.

MORE.
this in

2S5

And

a reign,

in

which

such opposition, so
to

far

from being customary or conducive

advancement,

Avas

seldom seen, and almost as seldom

went unpunished.

His motive loo, -was solely to prevent oppression and


justice
;

in-

and no bribe or advancement could bring him


his

to

change

conduct, as

is

too often done,, and promote the

measures which he had before condemned.

When

places
stiU

were conferred upon him without

his solicitation,

he

retained his integrity to his country, though his prince was

one of the most impatient of contradiction that ever


our throne.

filled

The

idea, as well as

name, of

patriot,
;

sunk

uot in him so soon as he had attained to affluence

nor did

he crowd the posts of public service with

his

relatives.

Neither wavering between the measures of the king and


people, nor, under colour of serving his country, intending

only to acquire power and promote private interest, patriotism shone in

him with a

real lustre, not, as it too

com-

monly doth, with a temporary and uncertain

blaze.

Queen Catharine used


sound counsellor
rest either
ferior to

in his

Henry had only one kingdom, and that was More the
to say, that
;

spoke as the king would have them, or were inin.

More
first

judgment; and as

for

Wolsey, who was

then the

subject in the realm, to answer his

own ends

he cared not what counsel he gave the king.*


f More,

256

JIEMOIIIS
dignity which

OF
so mucli temper,

The

More had borne with


jo}'.

he resigned with unfeigned

Although he might not


illegal Jtnisdiclion in

have objected to have seen the pope's

England cut

off,

and therefore might go cheerfully along

with the suit of Praemunire, yet


far the king's designs went, likely to follow,

when he perceived how


total

and that a
office

rupture was

he retired from

with a greatness of

mind hardly

inferior to

what the ancient philosophers have

pretended on similar occasions.

The

cause too of the king's


it

divorce he might think just, and therefore favour


it

while

was agitated at

Rome

but when he saw a breach with

that court likely to follow, he at once relinquished his lofty


station.

His retirement to private


fall

life

might have been

deemed a

great enough

and

t\^e

extent to which Henry


is

cairied his resentment on this occasion,

certainly

one of

the foulest leproaclies of

liis

reign.*

But More's sentiments were


above
all

those of a

mind sublimed
life,

i'cehngs of sense.
his

Liberty, riches, nay, even

were dross in

esteem, compared with peace of conChristian and philosopher,

science and eternal salvation.

he viewed the

ol>jects

of sense with supreme indifference,

and having

set his affections

most

stedfastlj'

on the things
His

above, he ardently desired his translation to them.

great example affords us a very superior lesson of fortitude

vmder suffering for conscience sake, of contempt of a

life

of flesh in itself short and transitory, and of resignation to


See Burnet.

SIR T.

MORE.

257

the will of heaven under the most trying afflictions of hu-

manity.

Mr. Roper informs us that


which he was an inhabitant of
(lid

in

the sixteen

years cluriuf^
lie

his father-in-law's house,

not once see

More

in

a fume.

Margaret Gigs, who


said

was brought-up with More's children,

that she some-

times committed a fault for the purpose of hearing Sir Tho-

mas chide
in so

her,

he did

it

in so grave,

and at the same time

moderate, so loving, and so compassionate a manner.


likewise informs us of his intimate friend, comi-

Erasmus

tate toiam
rixa.

familimn moderatur, in qua nulla tragcedia, nulla

And

though More was obliged to maintain many


is

servants, he

said never to have suffered

any of them

to

be

idle.

He

ever invented and assigned

some avocation or

other to each of them when they were not attendant upon

him, that they might avoid


tlio;ate

sloth,

gaming, and those prois

habits in general of which idleness

the source.*

Should any incline to infer that More at any period of


his life

became

austere and splenetic, given wholly to de-

votion and philosophy,


for pleasure, they
will
is

and without amusement or a


greatly misconceive his

taste

character.

His pleasures,

it

true,

were innocent and


;

rational, be-

coming a

christian

and a philosopher
conviviality,

yet he had a heart

for friendship

and
'

and

for every social feeling


let-

of our nature.
ters to

Some,' Erasmus writes in one of his

More,
I.

'

take great care not to be cheated by coun* More,

Vol.

LI

258
teifeit

:mi:-moii{s

of
trifles,

jewels

but you, despising such

account your-

self rich inclecd if

you can

find

u true friend.

No man

taketh so uuich delight in cards, dice, diess, hunting, or

music, as you do

in

conversing with a well-infornied and

pleasant companion.' *

From
would

IMorc's great-grandson

we

learn, that

he seldom
;

feasted the great, but his poor neighbours often


visit in their

nlioin he
li-

houses and bcstoio

upon
;

t/uiii

his large

beraliti/,

not groats, but erouns of gold

and

zv/ien

he zcas a

private lazcyer, he zcould take no fees of poor folks, zcidows,

nor pupils.
est stations,

The ignorant and


were those to

the proud, even in the high-

whom

he was observed to shew

the least respect.

patron to every

On the other hand, he was a friend and man of letters, and he maintained epistomost of the leained
in Christen-

lary correspondence with

dom

of his day.

His chief
gularity
;

foible

is is

said to have

been an affectation of
his

sin-

and he

even accused of having worn

gown
of

awry, that one shoulder might appear higher than the other.

Cranmer
deviate

also intimateth, that

More was

so

desirous

esteem, that having once spoken his mind, he would never


therefrom, for fear of injuring the
credit

of his

judgment.

But these alleged weaknesses sound too nmch


which ever attend u})on
distinc-

like the invidious censures

tion

and

if

they be with truth attributable to More, they

must

after all

be pronounced to be of too
* Farrag. pi$t.
p. 536.

trivial

a nature

SIR T. IMOUr.
for

259

our serious atiimaclvcrsioii, when opposed to the nobler

features of his sterUng character.

To what study

soever Sir

Thomas applied

himself, saith his

great-grandson, he grew in short time most famous therein.

He

then coniplimenteth the knight's talent for poetry even


rhetoric, the

in his youth, his skill in


style,

purity of his Latin

and

his patience for

such a wit in stud3'ing the law.

Yet the same


world like

characteristic

which distinguished

]\lore in

other respects, and which induced


his

him

to

appear to the

neighbours whatever his private habits and

opinions might be,

marked

his talents also.


;

Arrogance or

overbearance were strangers to him

and he ever seemed


was humble

more desirous of concealing, than of ostentatiously displaying, his talents.


in the

His own opinion of

his writings

extreme. Praise, vain glory, lucre, or worldly advancecertainly


asserted.

ment had
and others

no influence on

his

pen, whatever Tindal

So that envenomed hooks might be once

suppressed and abolished, he wished his


fair Jire.

own

on a light and
it

Of

his

Utopia he wrote, that he judged

no

better worth, than to remain hidden in his


to

own

island, or

be consecrated to Vulcan

and of

his

epigrams, you well

know, dear Erasmus, they never pleased me, and if others

had not

liked

them better than I

do,

they should never have

been published.

Powerful as he was
lated of him, that

in

arguing upon any subject,

it is re-

when he found a young opponent who

was unable

to

maintain his ground against him, rather than

LI

2oO

MK.MOIRS OF

to discourage rising merit, he

would with ingenuity divert

the conversation into a difl'ercnt channel. Vet was this


freciucntly appointed
talents, to

man
his

by the king, on account of


to
his

his

ready
to

make answer
visited

the compliments paid


universities
;

majesty

when he

and whenever
or abroad, he

More
to

visited a university in his

own country

not only attended their public disputations, but entered in-

them

himself.

When Henry went

over to meet the French


in

king,

and when Charles V. landed

England, More was

appointed to

make

the gratulatory addresses.*

His celebrated

political

romance, Utopia, he wrote


It

in

Latin about the year 1516.

speedily gained

him great

applause over Europe, was translated into French, Italian,

Dutch, and English, and hath now stood the


however, ex])erienced somewhat of a severe
better
thor's

test

of nearly
It hath,

three centuries as a masterpiece of wit and fancy.

fate, in

being

known and more admired abroad, than by the auown countrymen a circumstance which may in some
;

measure sanction
the day, though
living

its

re-appearance in an English dress of


is

its

merit

greater than to allow of

its

de-

any advantage by

translation.

It

can hardly be questioned, that under


of a commonwealth,
all his

this

ingenious

fiction

own ment were promulgated by More. He


in a

notions of governcreates a

kingdom

new world, and obliquely ccnsureth


in the old one.

the detects which


this

he had observed

More probably wrote

* Roper and More.

SIR T.

MORE.
;

261

piece before he had heard of Luther

and the Wicklevites


then
in" it,

and Lollards were the only


country.

heretics
full

known

in

our

He
It
i->

gave

his

mind

scope

and considerj)hilo-

ed mankind and religion with the freedom of a true


sophcr.

easy to collect from

it,

what

his

thoughts

then were of religion, the constitutions of the church, and


of the clergy at that time.

Had
the

he died then, he would

probably have been numbered with those,


lived in the

communion of

who though they church of Rome, yet saw


fit

her errors and corruptions, and only wanted


ties

opportuni-

of declaring themselves more openly for a reformation.


farther knowledge,

Upon

and more experience of men and

things, he appears to

have materially changed


very easy, as

many

of his

sentiments

and

remarked, to
ed in him.*

now not account how so


it is

we have

already

great an alteration was etfect-

More

appears, by this piece, to have been an

enemy

to

the severity of our laws, and to have thought in this particular in the

same

charitable

and reasonable way with

his

mild and gentle friend Erasmus,-j' and with

many

others

even of our own da}^

The History of King Richard III was written about the year 1513, More being then one of the under sheriff's
of London.

He

wrote

it

in

Latin as well as in Enahsh,


liim.

but

it

was never
it is

finished

by

In the volume of
to

his

English works

printed from a copy said


f Tom.

have been

See Burnet.

v. c. 167.

962
in
liis

Mi:.>rOIR.S

OF
tluit

own
in
is

liaiulwriting

and

iVoni

vohune

it

is

re-

printed

the incseut work, as a record of our history

which
ly

httlc

known,

aiul

which

is

certainly vahiablc if on-

on account of the

writer.

More's great-grandson observes of

this history, ii

is

so

well penned, that if oi/r chronicles of Ensiland uerc half so


xvell set-out,

fhci/

noitld entice all

Englishmen

to

read them

over often, adding

somewhat extravagantly,
unfinished.

that iio one

over adventured to finish the work, for the


the

same reason that

Venus of Apelles remained


after More's

Above a century
More's opponent

death, George

Buck

took-

up the cudgels tor Richard, which of course


in this

made him
later,

work

and above a century

came a noble
cfjual

speculator in our histor}-,

who seconded

this

advocate for a monster, and proved himself at least Buck's


in

the love of paradox.


his

The

tbrmer's

censure of

More's learning, and

other remarks, smell so strongly


little

of party, and he hath found so he cannot


latter

credit as

writer, that

now be deemed

worth}-^

of a serious

repl}'.

The

opponent, after allowing More's composition to be a

beautiful one,
est

and the writer of

it

to be

one of the honest-

statesmen and brightest names in our annals, supposes


tract, as

he wrote the
sure

he did

his

Utopia, to amuse his

lei-

and exercise
it

his fancy.

He

took-up a paltry canvas

and embroidered

with a jiowing design, as his imagination


;

suggested the colours


is

and

in the

end, the honest statesman

found gmlty, not only of invention and romance, but of

SIR T.

MORE.

203

palpable, material, nay, wilful falsehood.


the great knight speaks truth the most abominable
lies.
;

At one moment,

in

the next, he propagates

All writers, of whatever credit,


the.

are respected or condemned, as tkey confirm or oppose


doubter's hypothesis
;

and throughout the

piece, the

same

author from
tion,

whom

he produces exhibits to prove one asser-

he challenges as foresworn to

make

M'ay for another.

Yet

these conceits, however ingenious, have

had

little

or no effect in shaking the authority of More.

The most
;

popular historian of our dixy pays him every respect

our

judgments have not been convinced by flippancies


Richard
still

and

remains the monster he was.

By

a passage

in

this tract, it

appears that

More once

thought also of

Avriting the
;

history of

Henry VII and of


that

Perkin Warbeck

but

it

is

probable that he either never


felt

found

leisure for

accomplishing such a design, or

the freedom of his pen might be in

some measure

fettered,

by the favour which he experienced from Henry


Sir

\'11I.

Thomas, although not

to

be numbered with Sanazhis

zaro, Fracastoro, Vida,

and othere of
;

time,

is

allowed

to have

and a more assiduous application to the muses would probably have made lum a superior one. His epigrams are highly commended by
been no indifferent poet

Rhenanus,

as will

be seen by the

epistle prefixed to

them

and many authors beside Rhenanus have borne testimony


to their merit.

Our own

coiTcct

and

classical Jortin pro-

2(54

MEMOIRS OF
;i

nouncos the porni on


ly enaiiiourccl

lady

ol"

whom Move
is

liad

been deejv

in

his

youth, to be the most pathetic and


obvious, his hand

elegant in the collection; the reason

was secretary
the choice
ol"

to his heart.

The

short lines to Candidus,

on
For

a wile, have also been greatly admired.

the following translations of these poems, which cannot but

be acceptable to the reader,

am
and

indebted to the same

distinguished hand which favoured


translation of More's epitaph
;

me
I

with the additional

have added a version


stile

or

two of the knight's epigrammatic


reader.

for

the amuse-

ment of the merely English

To Candidus.
EiNOUGu by vagrant
Dear
j otitli

love.
:

you've been misled

rise (licac

joys above,

And
Some

quit the lawless bed.

consort in your arms,


lieart,

Heart link'd to

embrace

Wbo with
Your
So did
for

transmitted charms

lengthening line

may

grace.

yoayour
with

sire

The

ilebt,

interest

due,

Postcrily require,

My
Nor be
it

Candidus, from you.

chief your aim,

p'ortune or tace to seek


Slight love attenils the

dune,

Sought

lor her yursc or cheek.

; : :

SIR T.

MORE.

265

No

purer love can bear


Tlic flame, which fortune
fires
;

It vanishes in air,

And
Nay,

ere

it lives,

expires.

fortune's courted

charms

Fade

in the miser's grasp.

When

doom'd within

his

arms

An
And
Or

unloved spouse to clasp.

beauty's vaunted power

By

fever's tooth

decays

time-struck, like a flower

Beneath the solar blaze.

Then vows

are urged in vain

With
Bound

beauty's passing hue,

singly

by

that chain,

Affection passes too.

But genuine

is

the love

Which

reason, virtue rears

All fever's force above,

Above the

assault of years.

First scrutinize her birth

Be

sure her mother's mild

Oft with her milk her worth

The mother

gives her child.

Next

in herself be seen

Good
Still

temper's gentlest tone

placid be her mien.

Unruffled by a frown

Vol.

I.

Mm

;;

SOS

AIEMOIIIS

OF

And

still,

ber check's best charm,

Be

hcr's sweet

modesty

No lover-clasping

arm,
eye.

No love-provoking
Far from her
lips' soft

door
;

Be

noise,

be silence stern

And

ber's be learning's store,

Or

her's the

power

to learn.

With books she'll time Ijeguile, And make true bliss her own
Unbuoycd by
fortune's smile,

Unbroken by her frown.

So

still,

thy heart's delight


partner of thy way,

And
She'll

guide thy children right.


astray.

Where myriads go

So,

left all

meaner things,

Thou'lt on her breast recline

While

to her lyre she sings

Strains, Philomel, like thine:

While
Is

still

thy raptured gaze

on her accents hung,

As words of honied graaj


Steal

from her honied tonguo-

Words

they, of

power

to soothe

All idle joy or

woe

With With

learning's varied truth,

eloquence's flow.

: ;

SIR T.
Such Orpheus'
wife,

MORE,
fate

2QT

whose

With Or
Have

tears old fables tell

never would her mate


fetched her back from hell.

Such Naso's daughter, she

Whose muse
And
Her

with Naso's vied

such might Tullia be,


learned father's pride.

The

Gracchi's mother such.

Who train 'd

the sons she bore

Famed as their mother raucli, And as their tut'ress more.


But what

to distant

days

My
One
girl,

lingering glance confines

of equal grace,
this

E'en in

rude age shines

Single, worth

all,

she stands

By
Hail'd

fame through Britain flown,

gaze of other lands,

Cassandra of her own.

Say, would a maid so rare

Within thy arms

repose

Were

she, nor rich, nor fair,


i

Could'st thou decline her tows

Enough of beauty

her's.

With whom
Enough of

a husband's

blest

wealth she shares,

To whom

enough's a

feast.

Mm2

968
So

.MKMOIRS 0^
lov'd, were she (I swear)

Than Than

soot of darker die

I'd think her far, more fair,


e'er

met mortal eye

So

lov'il,

were she

(I

swear)

Than
I'd think

poverty more [xmc


richer far,

lier

Than

kinsrs

with

all their store.*

2o

Eliza,

whom

he loved in youth.

Thou

livest, Eliza, to these

eyes restored,
!

more

tlian lite in life's

gay bloom adored


first

Many a
1

long year, since


1

then was boyibli, and


1

we met, now am old.

has roU'd

Scarce had

bid

my

sixteenth

summer

hail,
;

And two

in thine

were wanting to the

taJe

When thy soft mien ah mien for ever fled On my tranc'd heart its guiltless influence shed. When on my mind thy mucli-Ioved image steals.
!

And

thy swett long-lost former

self reveals

Time's envious gripe appears but half unkind

Torn from

thyself, to

me

thou'rt

left

behind.

The

grace, that held

my

doting glance, thougli flown,

Has flown thy cheek

to

make

my
is

breast
fed,

its

throne

And And

as by gentle blasts the flame

'mid cold ashes rears

its

languid head
!

So thou, though changed (ah changed indeed) Kindlest the love, that once was thine, anew.

to vie

Now on my memory breaks that happy day. When first I saw thee with thy mates at play
See vol
ii,

p. 308.

SIR T. .AIORE.

269

On

thy white neck the flaxen ringlet

lies,

With snow
Thine

thy cheek, thy lip with roses

vies.

eyes, twin stars, with

arrowy radiance

shine,

And
I

pierce and sink into

my

heart through mine.


bolt, I stand, I

Struck as with heaven's

own

gaze

hang upon thy look


as I

in tix'd

amaze

And

writhe beneath the new-felt spear,


jeer.

My artless pangs our young companions


So charm'd me thy
fair

form

Or from
Lit in

it's

ripen'd grace as

or woman grown, woman known.


;

AVhether the glow, that

thrills

our early frame,


;

my

breast the

undecaying flame

Or some

kind planet at our natal hour,


it's

Deign'd on our hearts

common beam

to

pour

For one, who knew with what chaste warmth you burn'd,

Had

blabb'd the secret of

my

love return'd.

Then the duenna and


Baffled the stars,

the guarded door

and bade us meet no more.

Sever'd, ourdiiferent fates


Till this late

we thence pursued,
:

day

my

raptures has renewed


felicity I prize.

This day, whose rare

Has given
Crimeless,

thee safe to

my

delighted eyes.

my

Iieart

you

stole in life's soft

prime

And

stQl possess that heart without a crime.

Pure was the

love,

w hich

in

my
long

youth prevail'd
fail'd.

And age would keep it O may the gods, who,


Have brought
Grant that
Healtliful

pure, if lionour
five

lustres past,
last,

us to each other well at


five

when number'd
may

long lustres more


!

1 still

hail thee, heahhful as before

* See ToL

i,

p. 350.

270

MEMOIRS OF
Epigratns.

A squall arose The sailors fear


;

the vessel's toss'd


their lives arc lost.

Our

sins,

our

sins,

dismayed they cry,

Have wrought

this fatal destiny.

A monk it chanc'd
And round him,
Yet
still still

was of the crew

fo confess, they drew.


is

the rcsllcss ship

fossM

And
One

they fear their

lives are lost.

sailor,

keener than the

rest,

Cries, with our sins she's

still

oppressM

Heave out that monk, who bears them

all.

And
So

then full well

she'll ride the squall.

said so

done

with one accord

They throw

the caitilF overboard-

And now

the bark before the gale


sail.

Scuds with light liuU and easy


Learn hence the weight of

sin to

know,

With which

a ship could hardly go.*

While Brag was

out, his wife, so

frail,

To Hodge,
Retum'd

(he rustic yields.

the cuckold hears the tale,

And

storms into the


finds,

iields.

Poor Hodge he

and draws

his

sword

stone

Hodge

singles out

Wretch, with ray

dearest wife you've wbot'd

I have, replies the lout.

See

vol.

ii,

p, 321.

SIR T. M01{E

271

You own
By
Jove,
I'd

it

do you

then,

Brag

cries,
;

'Tis well
if

you speak

the truth

you had

told rae lies,

hewn you limb from

tooth !*

When the sun shines,


Of
And
teeth, with all

but ope those rows

your power.

then with that enormous nose

You'll gnomon-out the hour.+

In the Leyden edition of the works of Erasmus, in the

appendix to Dr.

Joitin's Life of

Erasmus, and

in

the edi-

tions of More's Latin works, are to be

found several of the

knight's

Latin

letters.

It hath

been justly remarked of

them, that though they be valuable on several accounts,


they have one small blemish,

they are

more

in the style

of orations than of

epistles,

and the peiiods are too

long^

and too embarrassed.

Of

all

More's writings, the controversial are indisputably

the most reprehensible.

But

in those days, as

we have

al-

ready had occasion to remark, the object was, not only to

endeavour to refute the arguments of the adversary, but


likewise to equal
to disadvantage,

him
it is

in

abuse.

If ever

upon these

More appeareth occasions. The fact is,


he was no longof good
j)rinciple

when

religion

was the subject

in agitation,

er himself.
sense, of

His bigotry overcame every


his
f

decorum, of humanity. Like


vQj.ii, p.

adversary Luther,
Ibid. p. 339.

* See

314.

272
his

MEMOIRS OF
zeal

and impetuosity were too hard-mouthed

horses,

M'hich ran

away with

the chariot and the charioteer,

Fruslra rclinacula tendons

Fertur equis auriga, neque audit currus habenas.

Thus

it is

remarked by bishop Atterbury,

that, in his an-

swer to Luther,

ISIorc forgot liimselt' so far, as to

throw out

the greatest heap of nasty language which ever was put to-

gether

that the

book throughout

is

nothing

l)ut
it,

downright

ribald r}', without a grain of reason to support

and gave

the author no other reputation, than


best

that of having the

knack of any man

in

Europe

at calling

bad names

in

good Latin.

More's English

tracts against Tindai, Barns,

^c. deserve a similar censure, though he certainly wrote with


as
Lis

much

wit and eloquence as any writer of that age.


in
this

lu

Apology, printed

his

English works,

More endeabut,

Youreth to extenuate

conduct, by the bluntness of his

nature, and the example given

him by

his adversaries

one of

his

understanding doth not stand vindicated by such

arguments.

Burnet

sailh

of

More

that he was no divine at

all,

nor

conversant with the

critical

learning

upon the

scriptures

that his peculiar excellence in writing was, a natural, easy


expression, and he presented
Avith their fair side
all

the opinions of popery

to the reader, disguising or concealing

the darker side with great art.

He was

also

no

less

dexter-

ous

in

exposing

all

the

ill

consequences Avhich Avould follow

SIR T.

MORE.

f78
tales

on the doctrine of the reformers, and had pleasant


ready on
pose.
all

occasions, which he applied wittily to his purratiier for the

He

wrote

rabble than for the learned

adds the bishop.

More's English works were published at London in a


thick folio volume in the year 1557, by order of queen

Mary

in

whose reign

it

was given-out as an extraordinary

circumstance, that king

Edward died and she succeeded

to

the crown on the anniversary of the knight's suffering on


the scaffold.

More's nephew, William Rastell, then

Ser-

jeant at law and afterward a judge, was patronised by her

majesty as editor of the work

and had he written a Life


it

of the knight (as hath been supposed),

would surely have


is

been prefixed
very scarce
tents of
it
it

to the volume.

As

this

book

now become

may

not be improper to recapitulate the con-

in this place.

Four

short tbings written in his youth for his pastime.

The The

life

of John Picus earl of Mirandula, translated out of Latin.

history of king Richard III, unfinished.

A
sima,

treatise (unfinished)
et in

upon

these

words of holy Scripture, memorare no-dsm

eternum non peccabis.

dialogue concerning heresies and laatters of religion.


supplication of souls.
confutation of Tindal.

The

The

Vol.

Nn

i74

AinMoms or
Icfter impu!!;nin; tlic
tlie iiltar.

erroneous writing of

John Frith

against the blessed

srjcramcnt ol

The

apolo^'y of .Sir

Thomas More,
tlie office

kniijht,

made by him Anno 1533,

after

That he had given over

of lord chancellor of

EiyUnd.

The

Dcbellacion of Salem and Bizancc.

treatise

upon the

blessed sacrament of the altar.

A A

dialogue of comfort against tribulalion.


treatise to receive the blessed

body of our Lord sacranicntally and

virlual-

]y both.

treatise

upon the passion of Christ, unfinished.

An

exposition of a part of the passion of our Saviour Jesus Christ.

Certain devout and virtuous instructions, meditations, and

prayers,

made

and

collected while he

was prisoner in the Tower. &c.

Letters, his epitaph,

Of More's Latin works, three editions have passed The first was printed at Basle in 8'", in 1563; press.
second at Louvain in foho in 1566
published by C. Gensch in
folio at
;

the

the

the last and best was

Frankfort on the INIaine


last edition are
its

and Leipsic

in

1689.

So few copies of the

to be found in this country, that a recapitulation of


tents

con-

may

be acceptable to the reader


Thomae

also.

Vita et obitns T. Mori e

Stapletoni Tribus Thomis..

Doctorum virorum varia epigrammata

in

laudem

et

mortem T. Mori.

Historia Richardi Anglia; ejus noniinis IlL

SIR T.

MORE.

S75

T. Mori responsio ad convitia M. Lutlieri conpesta in Henricum regem Auglix


ejus uumiiiiii V'lli,

sub Gulieliui
Cliristi.

Itossci

numinc edua.

T. Mori ex posit io passionis

Quod pro

fide

mors fugienda

iioii sit.

Pncalio tx Psalmis.

T. Mori Utopia.
T. IMori Poemata, quibus praemissa sunt quaedam ipsius
progj mnaimata.
et

Guiielmi

Lilii

T. Mori dialogi Lucianei e Grsecis

in

Latinum sermonem

conversi, adjecta

declaniatione qu;i Luciain TyrauniciiiaB rci'pondetur.

T. Mori

et

Erasmi episiote.

Of

More's personal pecularities we are told, that though

his table

was ever well supplied, he eal only of one dhh

himself, which

was coninKjnlj

salted meat.

He used

coarse

brown bread, and was toud of


fruit.

milk, cheese,
sc

eggs,

and

\\

hatever

disli
is

he hrst tasted

rved liim for his meal.

In

his

youth he

said to have abstained wholly


it

from wine

but he w(juld taste


water, or

in

his later

years

when

diluted with

mind
more

at

when he pledged his friends. To recreate the the same time with the body, or perhaps to allow
and digestion
to his meals,

leisure

he employed a

person to read aloud while he sat at table, and he


occasional remarks on the subjects which occurred.*

made

His dress never occupied

his

thought.

M hen

his secre-

More.

Nn


MHMOIRS OF
once tokl him that
his shoes

876
tary, Harris,

were torn, Moie

desired

him

to tell his servant,

who

bouglit and ordered all

his apparel at his tutor, to

own

discretion,

and

whom

he called his

buy him nexc ones.

In matters of the utmost imconsult his trusty Harris,


to
iiis

portance

and that

we arc told he would More olten submitted


led

opinion, though his

own judgment might have

him

to vary from it.*

More's great-grandson adds, that though low in statuic,


the knight's person was well-proportioned,
his

complexion

tending

to

phlegmatic, his colour xchite and pale, his hair


-j- ;

neither black nor yellow but between both


his

Ids

eyes grey,

countenance amiable and cheerful, his voice neither big


shrill,

nor

but speaking plainly and distinctly,

it
;

was not
his

very tuneable, though he delighted

much

in 7nusic

body

reasonably healthful, only that toward his latter end, by us-

ing much writing, he complained mucli of the ache of his


breast.

Holbein painted several family pieces

for Sir

Thomas,

most of which appear


friends abroad.

to

have been presented to the knight's


is,

One

of the best of them

however, at

present in this country, an heirloom in the family of Sir

Rowland Winn, which


bably
still

is

allied

to the Ropers.

It

is

pro-

preserved at the family residence, Nostal, in

Yorkshire.

More's family, as
* More.

we have

seen, consisted of three


t Probably
chesnut.

daugh-

SIR T.
ters

MORE.

277

and a son

with

whom

he brought-up Margaret Gigs,

afterward married to Dr. Clement.*

Margaret, his eldest daughter, married William Roper,

Esq. of Well-hall, Eltham, Kent, and had

issue,

Thomas,

manied
of

to

Lucy, daughter of

Sir

of the horse, and privy-counsellor

Anthony Brown, master to Henry Vlll Anthony,


;

whom we

have no farther informatitjn

Khzabeth, mar-

ried to

Stevenson, Esq. and afterward to Sir Ed-

ward Bray, Knight; Margaret, married to William Dawtry, Esq. and Mary, married to Stephen Clarke, Esq. and af;

terward to James Basset,

Esq.-f-

Elizabeth, the second daughter, married John, son and


heir of Sir

John Dancy, and had

issue John, I'homas, Bar-

tholomew, William, German, Alice, and Elizabeth.^

Cecilia, the third daughter, married Giles

Heron, Esq.

of Shacklewell, Middlesex, and had issue John, Thomas,

and Ann.
John, the only son, married Ann, daughter and heiress
of Edward Cresacre, Esq. of Baronborough, Yorkshire, and

had

issue

Thomas, Austin, Edward, Bartholomew, another


||

Thomas, and Ann.

It

is

said that the

first

wife of Sir

Thomas, having had


This son
||

three daughters, prayed most earnestly for a son.


* More.

f Ropet by Lewis,

J More.

j Ibid.

Ibid.

97

MEMOIRS OF
their
loiig

proved one of the heroiim jUii who are seldom equal to


fathers,

and

tlie

kniglit

wunkl say, she

iiad

prayed so

for a boy, tiiat she

produced one at
I.

last

who would be a
less

boy as lung as he

live.

lie

was certainly
;

ornamental

to Flore's family than his sister Margaret

advanta<ie which a uood education could


Lis natural parts

or?
'J'he

but he had every


afVortl

him, and
'

appear

to

have been considerably advanis

ced.

Among
in

the letters of Erasmus,

one addressed to
him, a youth of

him,

which the good scholar

stileth

great hope.

works of Aristotle

also, printed in

Creek

by Forben's

heirs in 1J31, are dedicated

to

him by Eras-

mus; and

those ot Plato, and other works, by Grynaeus.

Erasmus, ^^ho had frequently been an eye witness,


eth More's house, a
othei
little

stil-

habitation of the muses and anlie injures


it,

academy

ot

lato.

however, he adds,

h)
ot

ti.e

comparison

lor

in Plato's

academy they disputed

numbers and geometry, and only occasionally of moral


;

virtues

but

this

house was appropriately a school of chris-

tian duty.
it,

Neither

man

nor

woman was unemployed


;

in

in

hberal occupation or useful study


objeit.

though religion

was the chief

Discord was a stranger; not a peevish

-word was heard, no one


ciq^ation, all

was seen

idle.

Each had
excellent

his oc-

were cheerful, sober mirth prevailed; and the


this

master of the house maintained

economy,

not by severity and chiding, but by gentleness and kindness.*


V\

hen the same gcat scholar,

in his colloquy yii-

Farrag. Epist.

lib.

27.

SIR T.
baiis et Eruclitce ladies,

MORE.

279

nameth

tlie

Morica among certain learned

he evidently alludes to More's daughters.

The
ture

knight's favourite, ^Margaret, appears to have en-

joyed every advantage of an undeistanding strong by na-

and cultivated with peculiar attention.


which

Costerius, in

his notes

on Vincentius Lirinensis,* gives us an emendais

tion by her of a passage in Cyprian,

not unworthy

of the ablest

critic.

Slie also

wrote two declamations in

English, which she and her father translated into Latin,

both with so

much

eloquence, that

it

was

ditficult to pro-

nounce which of them deserved the preference.


to be better than one which he

She wrote

a treatise of the Four Last Tilings, which Moi'e declared

had written
letter,

himself.

Erisstill

mus complimenteth
more than
Pole read one of her

her in a

for her
;

learning,

for her virtue

or mannei's

and when cardinal


it

letters,

he could not believe that

was written by a woman.-j-

One
works.

of the effusions of her affection, addressed to her


is

father in prison,

here extracted from More's

English

Mrs. Roper

to

Sir

Thomas More.

Mine own good Father


It
is

to

me no

little

comfort, since I cannot talk w/th


delio-,.';

you by such means


P. 47.

as I would, at the leastvvay to


-

t More.

290

RIEMOms OF
ot"

myself, in this bitter time


as

your absence by such menns


sliall

tnatj

by as often writing to you as

be expefruitful

diiMit, ajid

by reading again and again your most


letter,

and delectable

the

faitlilul
riti

messenger of your very


from
all

virtuous and ghostly mind,

corrupt

it)ve

of

worldly things, and lasi knit only in the love of


desire of heaven, as

God and
fatner,

becometh a very true worshipper and

laithful servant of

God.

Who,
stJid,

doubt not, good

boldeth his holy hand over you, and shall (as he


serve

hatli) pre-

you both body and

\it

sit

mens sana

in
all

covpwe
earth-

sano

and namely now, when you have abjected

ly consolations,
luily,

and resigned yourself

willingly, gladly,

and

tor his love, to his lioly protection.

Father, what think you hath been our comfort since your

departing from usf Surely the experience we have had of

your
sel,

life

past,

and godly conversation, and wholesome counsuret}',

and virtuous example, and a

not only of the

continuance of that same, but also a great increase, by the

goodness of our Lord, to the great

rest

and gladness of

your

lieart,

devoid of

all

earthly dregs

and garnished with

the noble vesture of heavenly virtues,


for the holy spirit of
1

pleasant palace

God

to rest in.

W ho

defend you (as


will)

doubt not, good


trouble of

father, but of his

goodness he

from

all

mind and of body, and give me your most


all

loving obedient daughter and handmaid, and


children and friends, to follow that
that

us your

we praise in you, and to our only comfort remember and commune together of you that vve may m conclusion meet with you, mine
;

SIR T. MORE.

281

own dear

futUcr, in the bliss of henven, to


liis

which our most

merciful Lord hath brought us with

precious blood

Your owu most

loving, obedient dauglitcr

and bedeswoman,

MARGARRT HO PER,
who
that
ly

desireth above all worldly things


stead, to

to

be

in

Jolm a
hope
hearti-

Wood's

do you some

service.

But we

live in

we shall shortly receive you again, we may, if it be his holy will.

pray

God

Mrs. Roper appears to have been no

less attentive to

the

education of her children, than her parents had been to


the cultivation of her

own mind.

The

celebrated Roger

Ascham
him

informs us, that she was very desirous of having


;

for their instructor

but he could not be prevailed upuniversity.

on at that time to leave the

Her daughter Mrs.

Basset, was one of the ladies of queen Mary's privy-chamber.

This lady translated into English a part of her grand-

father's

Exposition of our Saviour's passion


it

and she imito liave

tated his style so well, that

was thought

been

translated by the knight himself.

While we are upon

this subject, it

may

not be uninterest-

ing to the reader to peruse a translation of one of More's


letters relative to the

education of his children, as preserved

by Stapleton.

Vol.

282

MEMOIRS OF
More

Sir Thomas

to

Goncllus.

'

have received,

my

dear Gonellus, your


affection.

letters, as

usual, liiU of elegance

and

Your
I

love of

my

children
their

I
;

see
for
I

by

3^our letters,

your diligence

gather from

own
was

each of their

letters pleased

me.

But espe-

cially

delighted, that Elizabeth behaved herself with

a decenc}' of demeanour in

my

absence which iew children

observe in the presence of their parents.

Give her to un-

derstand that that circumstance delighted

me

more, than

could

all

the learning in the world.


is

Tor

prefer the learn-

ing which

united Avith virtue, to


it

all

the treasures of kings;

and

if

we

separate from

propriety of conduct, what else

doth the fame of


in notoriety
?

letters

bring us, than a kind of infamy

This applieth peculiarly to the female sex.


in literature

Their proficiency

being something new, and a

certain reproach to the sluggishness of

men, most men

will

be ready to attack them, and to expend their natural malice

upon

their learning.

Nay, they

will call their

own

ig-

norance a virtue, when compared


learned.

Avith the faults


if

of these

But, on the other hand,


the case with
all

woman
in

(which I
I

wish

may be

my

girls,

and

which

have

the greatest coniidence under your auspices), to great excellence of character unite even a moderate portion of learning, I

deem her

possessed of more real good, than

if sIkj

had the wealth of Croesus and the beauty of Helen.

'

And

this

not for the sake of fame, althougli she pur--

SIR T.

MORE.

S8J

sueth worth as doth the shadow the body.


tlie

But because
be borne
;

reward of wisdom
the wings of
its

is

more

substantial than to

away on
it

riclies,

or to fade with beauty

since

placeth

dependence on rectitude of conscience, not


others,

on the tongues of

which abound
is

in folly

and

evil.

For

as the avoiding- of infamy

the duty of a good


is

man,
since

so the laying himself out for fame,

the part not onlv of


;

a proud, but of a ridiculous and contemptible one


that

mind must of necessity be

ill

at ease, which ever tluc-

tuateth between joy and sadness from the opinions of others.

But of the
I reall\f

great benefits which learning conferreth on

man,

deem none

preferable to the instruction vhich let-

ters afford us, that in the

attainment of them we regard


us,

not the reputation they bring


precept, although

but their

utility.

Which
like

some have abused

their

learning,

other good possessions, by hunting only for vain glory

and

popular fame, yet hath

it

been delivered by

ail

the most

learned, and especially by the philosophers, those moderators of

human

life.

I have enlarged the

more on
cast of
I I

this subject

of vain

glorj',

my

Gonellus, because of the expression in your

letter,

that

you think the elevated


nion.

my

daughter Margaret's
this opi-

mind should not be lowered.


But
in

agree with you in

my

mind, and

doubt not

in yours also,

he
ac-

seems to lower the noble disposition of


custometh himself to admire what
he, on the other hand, to elevate
is
it,

his

njind,

who

vain and base.

And
virtue

who esteemeth

and

ti'ue

good; who, by contemplating sub'ime objects, look-

Oo

884

MEMOIIIS Of
liit;l),with
all,

eth clown as from on

disregard,

on

tliose

shadows
at,

of good, which almost


for the

in ignorance, greedily

catch

substance.

'

As

this

seemed

to

me
1

the best way, I have not only


all

rccjuested

you

my

dear Gonellus, whose strong love to


led

mme
own
piety
I

would have

you

know
1

to

have done so

ot

your

accord, not only


is

my

wile, to

whom
ail

her true maternal

a sufHcient unpulse as

have ollen witnessed, but


of
also,

have frequently besought almost


they
niisiht

that

after ^ard

my triends admonish my children,


tliey

that,

avoiding the precipices of pride,

valk

the pleasant

meads of modesty
not
;

that the sight of riches overcome

them

that they sigh not for the want of that in


is

themselves

ivhich

erroucoublv admiied b^

others; that tlicy think

lio better

of themselves lor bt ing well dressed, nor worse they


s})oil

for being otherwise, that

not the beauty which


it

nature gave them by neglect, noi endeavour to mcrease

by

vile arts; that


;

they esteem \irtue the hrst, letters the


ot these they

second good

and that

esteem those the best,

which can best teach them piety

to

God,

chaiit}

to

man,

modesty and

christian humility in their

own deportment.

'

Thus
shall

shall

they receive fnnn the Almighty the reward


lile
;

of an innocent

in the

certain expectation of which,


in
this life,

the^

not fear death, and feeling true joy

be neither pufl"ed-up with the vain


broken-down by
true
their malice.
fruits
'J'hcse

praises of
1

men, nor

esteem to be the

and genuine

of learning; Avhich, though they be

SIR T. MOklT.

283

not put-forth by
this view, 1

all

the learned, yet, whoever studicth with

maintain

may produce them

in the highest per-

fection.

It mattereth not to
it
;

the crop, whether

man

or

Avoman

sowed

and

if

the

name

MA>f, whose

reason distm-

guisheth his nature from the brute, api)lieth to either sex,


I say science,

by which that reason

is

cultivated,

and

like

field

beareth good corn under due


liut it the soil in
in

tillage,

equally becom-

eth either,

woman

be bad by nature, and

more productive

weeds than corn (by which opinion


I,

many

deter that sex from letters),

on the other hand,

think the female genius ought on that account to be the

more dihgently cultivated by


that

letters

and good discipline

the evil of nature

ma}',

by industry, be corrected.
fathers,

Those wise and holy men, the

thought thus.

Of

whom,

to omit the rest,

horted ladies

Jerom and Augustin not only exof the highest rank and worth to the acquimight the more
easily ac-

sition of letters, but, that they

complish

it,

they diligently expounded to them abstruse

passages in scripture, and wrote long letters to young maidens with so

much

erudition, that old

men

of our day,

and

professors of divinity, can scarcely read, so far are they

from understanding them.

Which works of holy men,


best

my
the

learned Gonellus, you will of your goodness take care that

my

(laughters read.

From them they may

know
Avill

scope their learning ought to embrace, and they

teach

them

to

esteem the consent of God, and a good conthe best fruit of their labours.
So, placid

.science,

mid

esc

RiEMoms of
tlie

tranquil in themselves, they will neither be set-up with


praise of the tlatterer, nor
scufl'er.
I'cel

any

bite

iVom the unlearned

'

But

hear you long ago cxchiiniing, that these precepts,

tliough true, are too hard for the tender age of

my

child-

ren
is

for

who

is

there,

however old or learned, whose mind


not the smallest

so strong

and

well-poised, that he hath


?

inclination for glory

But,

my

friend, the

more

diiKcult

1 see it to shake-off this pest

of pride, the more endeavour

do

deem
is

necessary, even from infancy.


this

Nor do
evil

think

there

any other cause why

unavoidable

sticketh

so fast in our breasts, than because almost as soon as

we

are born

it is

sown

in

our minds by our nurses, next che-

rished by our masters, and lastly, fed


fection by our parents.

and brought

to per-

For no one teacheth us any good,

without the expectation of praise as the reward of merit

whence, being long accustomed to

tiie

love of praise,

it

cometh

to that

at last, that while

we study

to please the

majority,

and

therefore the inferiority,

wc grow ashamed

of being good.

'

That

this

plague

may be

driven the farther from


all

children,

do you

my

Gonellus, their mother, and


in

my my
tliat

friends, chant, inculcate, na}', bellow

their

ears,

vain glory

is

abject and disgustful

and that there

is

no-

thing more excellent than the humble modesty recommend-

ed by Christ. This your prudent kindness


teacliing

will

inculcate by
;

them good

ratiicr

than blaming their faults

and

Sm
you

T.

MORE,

287

will conciliate their love,

not hatred, by your admonithis

tions.

And

nothing can conduce more to

end, than

the reading to

them the precepts of the

fathers.

These,

they knoAv, are not angry with them; and, from their venerable sanctity, their authority must have great weight.

'

"Wherefore, if

you

will

read some such things, beside

their lesson in Sallust, to


their understandings

my

Margaret and Ehzabeth

(for

appear to be riper than those of John


increase

and

Cecilia),

you

will

my own

as well as their ob-

ligations to you,

which are aheady great.

And my
their

child\,y

ren, first dear to


their
letters

me by
virtue,

nature, then
shall

more endeared

and

become by

superior

growth in learning and good manners under your auspices,


superlatively dear indeed to me.

'

Farewell.

At Court, Whitsuneve.'

^Vhen

INIore resigned
his

his

office

of chancellor, he
;

made

a disposition of

landed property
his life,

reserving to himself
after his

his estates for the

term of

and

death as-

suring a part to his wife, a part to his son's wife as a jomture,

and a part to Mr. Roper and

his wife,

with divers re-

mainders over.

Though

this

was

settled long before the

l^night's attainder, the

conveyance was then made void

and the inheritances


wife were claimed
that two days after

allotted to his wife

and

to his son's

by the crown.

But

it

had so happened,
he altered

More had

settled his deed,

288
his first inlcntiou
iitid

MliMOIRS
;

01"

instead of reserving that portion to


rest,

himsch' tor his


his witc their

ht'c,

hkc the

he gave Mr. Ropi-r and


l.i

share in possession immediately,

c(iiisefirst

queuce of

this, as
tlie

the statute went only to annul the


their share

conveyance,
Icstiition.

Ropers jeserved

without mo-

Lady More was

driven from the liouse at Chelher,

sea, her effects

were taken from

and Henry, of

his

mercy, allowed her twenty pounds a-year.

John More and


in the

Mrs. Ixoper were


they obtained

for

some time imprisoned, but

end

tlieir

liberty.*

Erasmus survived
and concluded,
in

his friend

]\Iore

only about a year;


life,

July

1.536, his

long and laborious

devoted to the opposition of barbarous ignorance and blind


superstition, ;ind to the

promotion of useful literature and

true piety.

These glorious objects he endeavoured to ac-

complish in a mild and gentle manner, attacking not the


persons of men, but the faults of the age
;

till

necessity

compelled him to reply to those who assaulted him with the


^utmost disingenuity and malice.

Early

in life

he perceived, and disclosed to the world,

that the religion of the ecclesiastics of his day consisted in

minute observances and formal grimaces, with which ~the

wicked could comply as well as the good. He, on the other


hand,

made
;

religion

to consist in

what the worthy alone


virtues,

observe

in the

exercise of those christian

which

are formed in the mind from a knowledge of our duty and


* Roper and More.

SIR T.

MORE.

289

a conviction of

its

importance.

In vain he afterward act-

ed the

pacifier

exhorting on one hand the court of

Rome
The
re-

to proceed with

more mildness, and the Lutherans, on the more submission and modesty.

other, to behave with

pretensions of the former were so exorbitant, that nothing

but capital punishments could support them

and the

formers were so shocked and provoked, so convinced that

no compliance would be made with any of


that they accounted
it

their requests,

betraying the cause of truth to speak

submissively to such incorrigible rulers.

Erasmus hath been


flattering

justly censured

for his

weakness

in

a party, whose sentiments and conduct he in


;

many points disapproved and in finding fault with those whom, on the whole, he resembled much more than he But they who compelled him to this did their adversaries. conduct, Avho hated the name of reformation, and treated as vile heretics all who dared even to wish for amendment,
were
far

more blameable.

If he wanted courage by na-

ture, they

who took advantage

of his infirmity, far more

"wanted honesty and piety.

certain pious craft


so

and an innocent

time-serving, which
reli-

however we must
gion, ^-c.

use as not to

betray the cause of


to

was the gospel which Erasmus preached


;

the

Lutherans

for

he imagined that they and their cause would

go to ruin, and that a worse condition of things would ensue.

Had

they
all

met

his

wishes, Ave might

still

have been

involved in

the darkness which overspread the christian

Vol. L

PP

590

MFMOIKS OF
in tlic fifteenth

world
far

century, and for previous ages.


ecclesiastics

So

would the popes and


their beloved

have been from aban-

doning

interests,

founded on ignorance and


luive

superstition, that

a bloody inquisition would


Spain,

been

established

in

Italy,

and

all

christian

countries,

which Avould have extinguished


ginning to shine.

for ever the lights

then testability

Lutheranism, by gaining more

than he expected, prevented the tyranny of an inquisition


in

Germany

and the reformation of Calvin secured the

hberty of other countries.

Had

all

(Jermany submitted

to

Leo and

Charles, in compliance with his timorous counsels,

Erasmus himself would undoubtedly have been one of the The court of Rome, no longer apprehensive first sufferers.
he should
crifice

join the heretics,

would have otFered him, a

sa-

of a sW'eet-smelling savour, to the monks,

who

did

a thousand times

more

service to tliat court, than a thousand

such scholars as Erasmus.

Had

he lived sixteen years longer

than he did, he would have seen an amazing change in the


affairs

of Charles, as well as in the religious state of Ger-

many.

The apprehension of
he
still

losing his revenues, the reputation

enjoyed in the court of Rome, and was loath to re-

linquish,

and possibly the

fear of being

excommunicated

and proscribed, nay poisoned or assasssinated, might work


together
strain

upon one of more courage than Erasmus, and rehim from speaking freely of the controversies then

agitated.

He

still,

however, maintained the truth, though I'hough he frecpiently censured

cautiously and obliquely.

Sm
Lutlier,

T.

MORE.
his point,

291

he heartily wished he might carry

and

extort from his enemies

some

rcfoi-niation

of doctrine and

manners

but, as he could not imagine that

Luther would

succeed, he adhered outwardly to the stronger party.


fear of

The

want cannot have intiuenced him


;

to say

and do

what he thought unlawful


best friends, as

but the fear of disobliging his

Henry VIII, Charles V, the popes, George of Saxony, Wolsc}', W'arham, More, Campegius, Bembus,
Sadolet,

and

others,

might influence
it.

his

judgment though
to suppose,

he was not aware of

There

is

no necessity

that he acted ao-ainst his conscience in adhcrino; to the

church of

Rome

no, he persuaded himself that he did as


in freely

much

as piety

and prudence required,

censuring

her defects.

The bold and


;

resolute will greatly prefer the

conduct of Luther

who, as the apologists of the good

scholar must allow, acted far

more

like

an apostle or

pri-

mitive christian, than did Erasmus.

Concord
to

is

undoubtedly a valuable blessing

yet

it is

not

be purchased at the price of truth and

liberty.

These

are infinitely

more estimable than a sordid


arbitrar}-

trancpiillity be-

neath the yoke of falsehood and

dominion, under
faction, soli-

which the christian republic becomes a base


citous only of enjoying the present,

and neglecting every

thing laudable, under the pretext of preserving peace. And,

had the

pacific

schemes of Erasmus been pursued, such


state of Christianity.
thej'

would probably have been the present

Though
least

divisions in general
this

do much harm,

have at

produced

good

the truth of the gospel, and a

Pp

S92.

ME^rOIRS OP

christian liberty wliich acquicscetli onl}' in the decisions


Christ, arc

of

not entirely banished trom the earth, as they

would

liave

been -without the struggles

ol'

our ancestors^

I'hey jModuced no snudl benefit to the uien)ory of

Erasmus

himself;
cabals,

who having

his

works condemned by theological


inquisitions,

and mangled by

which struck out the


stig-

most valuable part of

his

writings,
if

would have been

matised through succeeding ages,


in

a party had not arisen


his

Europe, Avhich willingly forgives him

weakness and

irresolution, for the sake of his iisetul philological


looical labours
;

and theo-

and gave him a second

lile,

and recomfaith-

mended him
ful edition

to the christian world,

by an elegant and

of his works.

Erasmus,

it

hath been said, was not rewarded


Yet,
if

in i)ropor-

tion to his merit.


invitations,

we
lie

consider

and favours he received,


inclination

how many presents, how many he refused,

and how

little

had

for ecclesiastical prefer-

ments (more of Avhich he might have obtained), we cannot In him we have a class him with the inj dices literati.
Tery remarkable instance of a man,
avIio,

with numerous
j)oor,

disadvantages of birth and education, friendless and

overcame every obstacle, and, by dint of


dustry,

talent

and

in^

became one of the


names

first

scholars of his age, ac-

quiring the patronage of princes, nobles, and prelates, of

the greatest

in church as well as state.*

It

is

a pleasing circumstance in the history of two great


* See
Jortiu's Life of

Erasmus.

SIR T.

MORE.

293

men

like

More and

Erasnuis, that the bond of fiiendship


Vit'c,

into which thej entered in early

appears never to have

been broken

though,

if

we
to

contrast the freedom of spirit

disphiyed by the one, and the prejudices of the other, such

an infraction
ed.

may appear
life

have been

sufficiently hazard^
still

As

lte in his
his

as he

could, the knight

corre-

sponded with

friend,

and shewed him

to the last the


for him.

same esteem which he had ever entertained


one of
tl;ese letters

In

he gently admonisheth the great scholar,


;

not to recant or retract anything

but merely to conde-

scend as far as he could to the infirmities of some honest

and weak brethren.

'J'hus

the bigotted advice which ]More


his friend
is

hath been said to have given


tion,

a misrepresenta-

though the use made by the reformers of the theoloworks of Erasmus might perhajis not unreasonably
for

gical

have contributed to diminish the knight's affection

him

since he could not be well pleased to find himself pressed

by such arguments.*

We

will

add, by Avay of appendix to these jMemoirs,

three letters by

Erasmus

relative

to

More.

The

first,

to

Ilutten, in drawing a portrait of the knight, will be found to describe

minute

particularities

of his mind and bod}-.


his

That

to

Budaeus contains a farther account of

manner

of living and managing his family, and of the excellent dispositions


last,

and uncommon erudition of

his daughters.

The
ele-

published under the

name

IS ucerinus, gives us

an

gant and pathetic account of the deaths of


*
Jortin.

More and

294
Fisher,

MEMOIRS OF
and
tliougli

SIR T.

MORE.

not acknowltdged by him, hath been

commonly,

antl with

some probabdity, ascribed

to

Erasmus-

As much
will

ot"

the spirit of tlicse letters would be lost by

translation, they are given in the original language;

and we
day, re-

add a lew Testimonies, by the learned of

his

lative to ]\lore

and

his writings, Avhich

appear to demand

a place on an occasion

like the present.

APPENDIX
TO THE

MEMOIRS,

APPENDIX.

Erasmus Rot.

Ulrica Hutteno S,

D.

QaoD Thomx
rum

Mori ingenium

sic

deamas, ac pene dixeritn deperis, nimiscribis nihil esse potest

scriptis illius iniiammatus,

quibus ut vere

neque
multis

doctius neque festivius, istuc mihi crede clarissime Huttene tibi

cum

commune
tuorum
est ilia

est,

cum Moro mutuum


omnium maxime
raortales,
ilia

etiam.

Nam

is

vicissim adeo scriptorum

genio delectatur, ut ipse tibi


Platonis

propemodum

invideam.

Haec videlicet

amabilis sapientia, quae longe flagrantiores

amores excitat inter


formae.

quam uUs

quamlibet admirabiles corporum

Non
fit

cernitur

quidem

oculis corporeis, sed et

animo

sui sunt oculi,

ut hie quoque verum comperiatur illud

Grxcorum

15 i^Hf yMict iti^diTron l^iv.

Per bos

aliquoties, ut ardcntissima charitate conglutineutur, inter


intercessit.
;

quos nee
fit,

colloquium nee mutuus conspectus

t quemadmodum vulgo
ita

ut incertis de causis alia forma alios rapiat


tacita
teris

videtur et ingeniorum esse

qusedam cognatio, qu5e


item.

facit ut certis ingcniis

impense delectemur,

cae-

non

Cseterum, quod a

me

flagitas,

ut

tibi

totum

Morum

velut in tabula depin>


cupis.

gam, utinam

tarn absolute pneslare

queam quam tu vehementer

Nam

-mihi quoque non injucundum fuerit interim in amici multo

omnium

suavisfimi

Voir.

I.

208
conlcmplationc vcrsari.
spexisse.

APPENDIX.
Scd priinum
illi-

i T]i5 i>}(it i/ur


sit,

omncs Mori dotes

pcr-

DeinJc Iiuud scio an


arbltror Icvioris esse
Arliiileiii,

luturus

a qtiolibct artifice depingi scsc.


eflingere,

Sec cnim

opcrK

Monim

quain Alexandrum

Magniiin aut

nee

illi

quam

hie iiostcr iinmortalitate digniores crant.


;

Tale argumentijin prorsus Apcllis cujuspiam inanum dcsiderat


ipse Fulvii Rutiibaeque similior sini

at vcreor, iie
tibi totius

quam

Ajjellis.

Expcriar taincn

hominis simulacrum dtlineare verius

quam

exprimcre, quantum ex diutiua


licnit

domcsticaque consuctudine vol animadvertcre

wl

mcminissc.
intelligcs

Quoil

si

quando

fiet

ut vos aliqua Icgatio committat, turn

demuin

quam non
aut invi-

probum arlificem ad hoc negotii delegeris, vercorque plane nc


commemorarc voluerim

me

dcntix incuses aut cxcutientiae, qui ex tarn multis bonis tarn pauca vel vidcrim
lippus vel
invidiis.

Atque ut ab ca parte cxordiar qua

tibi

Worus

est ignolissiraus, statura

modcsi-

deque corporis est infra proceritalem, supra taracn notabilem humilitatcm.


V'erum
deres
;

omnium membrorum

tanla est symmctria, ut nihil hie

omnino

cute corporis Candida, facies magis ad candorem vergit

rcm, quanquam
subllicct, capilli

a rubore procul abest

nisi

quod

tennis

quam ad palloadmodum rubor ubique


ingenium arguere
nostri nigrore

subnigro flavore, sive

mavb

sufllavo nigrore, barba rarior,


spix;ics

oculi subcaesii maculis


solct fclicissimum,

quibusdam

inferspersi, quse

apud Britannos etiam amabilis habetur, cum


Ncgant ullum oculorum genus minus

magis capianlur.

infcstari vitiis.

Vul-

tus ingenio respondet, gratam et

amicam
;

fcstivitatem

semper prse

se ferens,

ac

nonnihil ad ridenlis habitum compositus

atque, ut ingenue dicam, appositior

ad jucunditatem quam ad gravilatcm aut dignitatem, etiamsi longissime abest

ab ineptia
prcscrtim

sciirrilitatcque.

Dexter humerns paulo vidctur eminentior

Isevo,

cum

incedit, id

quod

illi

non accidit natura sod assuetudine, qualia

permulta nobis Solent adharrers.

In reliquo corpore nihil est quod offendat,


ita

manus tantum
conferantur.

subrusticae sunt

duntaxat,

si

ad reliquam corporis

specieni'

Ipse

omnium qus ad
adeo ut nee

corporis cultum attincnt semper a puero negligentissi-

mus

fuit,

ilia

magnopere curare

sit solitus,

quae sola viris esse cu-

randa docet Ovidius.

|Fonnx venustas qux

fuerit adolescenti,

nee otiam

APPEiVDIX.
licet atlSf
Kit^dfiiii

209
non majorem annis

conjiccrc;

quanquam

ipse novi liominera

viginti tribus,

prospera

nam nunc non multum excessit quadragesimum. Valetudo magis quam robusta, sed tamcn quse qnantislibet laboribus sufSciat
Spes
est vi-

honesfo cive dignis, nullis aut certe paucissirais morbis obnoxia.

vacem

fore,

quando patrem

liabet

admodum
villi

natu grandem sed mire virenti vein delectu

gelaque senectufe.

Niminem adbuc

minus morosum
est,

ciborum.
fuit.

Ad juvenilem

usque setatem aquae potu delectatus


essef,

id

illi

patrium

Vc-

rutn hac in re ne cui raolestus

fallebat

convivas e stanneo poculo cervi-

siam bibens, camque aquse proximam, frequenter aquam meram.

Vinum,
ore

quoniam

illic

mos

est

ad idem poculum

vicissira

invitare sese,

summo

nonnunquara

libabat, ne prorsus abhorrere videretur, simul ut ipse

communi-

bus rebus assuesceret.

Carnibus bubulis, salsamentis, pane secundario ac ve-

hementer fernientato libentius vescebatur,


deliciis.

quam

lib cibis

quos vulgus habet in

Alioqui ncutiquara abhorrens

aJj

omnibus qux voluptatem innoxiara

adferunt etiam corpori.

Lactariorum,
;

et

eorum foeluum qui nascuntur


in deliciis

in ar-

boribus, semper fuit appetentior

esum ovorum

habet.

Vox neque
a natura
Linn-ua

grandis

est

nee

admodum

exilis,

sed quae facile penetret aures, nihil habens


;

canorum ac molle sed plane


non videtur
esse

loquentis est

nam ad musicam vocalem

compositus, etiamsi delcclatur omni musices gencrc.


nihil

mire explanata

art iculataque,

habens nee prseceps nee htesitans.

Cuitu

simplici delectatur, nee sericis purpurave aut catenis aurcis utitur, nisi

cum

integrum non

est ponere.

Dictu mirum

quam

negligens
;

sit

ceremoniarum

quibus hominum vulgus aestimat


ita aliis
sit

morum

civilitatem

has ut a nomine exigit,

non anxie prxsfat ncc


si

in congressibus nee in conviviis, licet

harum non

Sed niuliebre putat viroque indignum, cjusmodi ineptiis bonam temporis partem absumerc.
lubcat uti.

ignarus,

Ab

aula princifnimque familiaritate olim fuit alieuior, quod

illi

semper pe-

culiantcr inrisa fuerit tjrannis

quemadmodum
multum

squalitas gratissima.

Vix au-

tcm rcperies

ullani

aulam

fcim niodestam quas


luci,

non

muKum

habeat strepitus at-

que ambifionis, multum


specie tyrannidis.
negotio,

luxus, quaeque prorsus absit ab

omni

Qiiin nee in lienrici VJil. aulam pertiahi poluit nisi multo


civilius

cum

hoc pcincipe nee optari quicquam possit


aiqne
otii est

ac modcstius.
datur lu-

Natura

libertatis
ita

avidior, sed

quemadmodum

otio

cum

bens utitur,

quoties poscit res,

nemo

vigilantior aut patieutior.

Ad

ami-

Qq

300

APPENDIX.
est cultor, ct

citiam natus factusque videtur, cujiis et sincerissiraiis


cisbimus
est.

longc

ten;i-

Nee

ille

mctuit tai/?a/> ab Hcsiotla * paruru laudalain.

Nulli

non patct ad
modissimus

iieccssitudinis foediis.

Ncqiinqiiain moiosui iu dcligcudo, coiuSi foris incidit in quenidiiniltiU dissucns

in alcudo, constatitissiinus in rctinendo.

piani, cujus vitiis mcderi

non

possit,

hunc per occasioncin

araicitiam^ non abrumpciis.


positos,

Quos

sinceros repcrit, et

ad inyeniuiu suum ap-

horum

consuetudiiic fabulisque sic delectatur, ut in Lis rebus prseci-

puani

vitse

voluptatcni ponere videatur.

Nam a

pila, alca, cliaitis, cxU-iisqiic


solct
fullere,

lusibus, quibus viilgus proccruni


horret.

tenipom txdiiim
est

prorsiis

ah-

Porro ut propriaruni reruni

negligciitior, ita

nemo

diligentior iu

curandis amicorum ncgoliis.

Quid

multiij ? si qu'is

absolutum vene amicitise rcqnirat exemplar, a neIn convictu tarn rara comifas ac

Hiine recfius pctierit

quam a Moro.
tristi
sit

morum
tam

snavitas, ut

nemo

tain

ingcnio

qucm non

cxbilaref, nulla rc>

atrox cujus (sedium non disculiat.


ut ad bos natus videri possit
est,
;

Jam

indc a pucro sic jocis est ddcctatus,

sed in his nee ad scurrili(a(cm usque progrcssus


araavit.

nee mordacitatcm
Si

unquam
csset

Adolescciis comoediolas et scripsit et

e^it.

quod dictum

salsius]

etiam in ipsum tortuni, tainen amabat

usque

adco gaudet salibus argutis, ct

ingcnium
primis

rcdolentibiis
est

mule

ct

cpigram-

niatis lusit juveiiis, et

Luciano

cum
est,

delectatus, quin et milii, ut


fuit auctor.

Morias Encomium scriberem, hoc

ut canielus saltarcm,
ille

Nihil

autcm

in

rebus humanis obvium

est

unde

non venetur voluptatera, etiam


;

in rebus
si

maxime

seriis.

Si

cum

eruditis ct cordatis res est, delectatur ingcnio


stultilia.

cum

indoclis ac stuKis, fruitur illorum

Ncc

offenditur morionibus,

niira dextcrilate ad

omnium

aiiectus sese

accommodans.

Cum

mulieribus

fere,

atque etiam

cum

uxore, non nisi lusus jocosque tractat.

Diceres altcrum quen-

dam

esse Democritum, aut potius Pylhagoricum ilium philosophum, qui va-

cuus anirao per raercatum ol)ambulans, contemplatur tumultus vendentium


atque ementium.
abest a sensu
affectus

Nemo

minus ducitur vulgi judicio, sed


Prxcipua
;

riirsus

nemo minus
avium quod

communi.

illi

voluptas

est si)ectare

formas, ingenia ct
est

diversorum animantium
alat, si

proinde nullum fere genus

domi non

quod

aliud animal vulgo rarum, veluti simia, vuipes, vi-

E?Y. 715.

APPENDIX.
Terra, mustcla, et bis consirailia.

301

Ad hsc si
solet,
sit

quid exoticum, aut alioqai spscafque


liis

tanduin occurrat, avidissime mercari


habct itibtructam, ut nusquani non

rebus uadique dooiuin

obvimii quod oculus ingredientium de-

morclur

ac

totics silii

reiiovat

voluptatem, quoties alios conspicit oblectari.


puellaruin. amoribus, sed citra iufainiain, et
ct aniino

Cum
quam

astas ferret,

noa abhorruit a

sic ut oblatis

magis fuerctur quani captatis,

mutuo caperetur potius

coitu.

Bonas

litcras

a priinis statim annis hauserat.

Juvenis ad Giaecas

liieras

ac

philosophise sfudium sese applicuit, adeo uon opitulaate patre, viro alioqui

prudenti proboque, ut ca conantem

omni

subsidio destitucret

ac pene pro
is

abdicato haberet, quod a patriis studiis desciscere videretur, nana

Britanni-

carum Icgum peritiam


simn, ita

profitetur.

Quse

protessio, ut est a veris Uteris alienis-

apud Britannos cum primis babentur inagai

clarique, qui in hoc

generc

sibi

pararuut auc(ori(atem, ncc tcmere apud iUos alia via ad rem ac

gloriam paraiidam magis idonea.


sulae peperit lioc

Siquidem pleramque nobililateia

illius iu-

sludiorum genus.

In eo negant quenquam absolvi posse,

nisi

plurimos annos insudarit.


scentis

Ab

hoc igitur

cum

ijn

injuria abhorreret adole*

ingenium, melioribus rebus natum, tamen post degustatas scholasticas

disciplinas, sic in hoc vcrsatus est, ut


litigatores,

ncque consulerent quenquam libentius


feceret

neqne qusestnm uberiorem

quisquam eorum qui

nihil aliud

agebant

tanta erat vis ac celeritas ingenii.

Quin

ct

evolvendis ortbodoxorum-

voluminibus non segncm oix?ram impendk.

Augustiiii Jibros

De

Civitate Dei

publice professus est adhuc pene adolescens autlitorio frequent!, nee puduit nee
pcenituit sacerdofes ac senes a juvene profano sacra discerc.
pietatis

Interim et ad
aliis-

studium totum animum appuiit,

vigiiiis, jejuniis,

prccatienibus

que consimilibus progymnasmatis sacerdotium mcditans.

Qua quidem

in re

uon paulo plus

ille

sapiebat,

quam

pleriquc

isti

qui temere ad tam arduara pro-

&ssiouem ingciuut

sese, nutlo prius sui pcriculo facto.

Neque quicquam
quod

obstabat'

quo minus

sese

huic

vitse

generi addiceret, nisi

uxoris desiderium non posset excutere.

Maluit igitur raaritus esse castus,

quam

sacerdos impurus.

Tamen

virgincm duxit

admodum
Hanc

puellam, daro ge-

nere natam,

rudem adhuc, utpote

ruri inter parentes ac sorores


fingerc.

semper habitam,
instruendam

quo magis

ilU liccret illam

ad suos mores

et literis

50?
curavit et omiii Musiccs gcncrc

APPENDIX.
dodam

reddidit, planequc falein pene finxcrat


siis-

quicum

lubuissct iiniversam

xtafem cxigere, ni mors prematura puellam

tulissct c
Ires,

medio

scd cnixara liberos aliquot,


Cecilia,

quorum adhuc

supcrsunt pucllx
viI'u-

Margarda, Alojsia,

puer unus Joannes.

Neque diu codebs


;

vere sustinuit, licet alio Tocantibus


iiere uxoris

amicorum

consiliis

paucis mensibus a
voluplati,

viduam duxit magis curandae familix quam


ut ipse jocari sold, sed

quippe nee

bcUam admoduin ncc puoUam,


matrcm
faniili.is,

acrcm ac vigilantcm
vivit,

quicum tamcn perinde comiler suavi(erque

ac

si

pucUa

ford forma quautumlibet amabili.

Vix ulhis raaritus a sua tantum obsequii

impetrat imperio atque severitudine, quantum hie blandltiis jocisquc.

Quid

cnim non impetret, posteaquam


hoc animi minimc
mollis,

eflecit,

ut mulicr

jam

ail

senium vcrgens, ad

postremo ad rem attcnlLssima,

cilliara, tcstudine,

mo-

nochordo, tibiisque canere disceret,


pensuni exigenti marito redderet
tur, ia
tur,
?

et in liisce rebus quotidic praescriptnm ojK'rx

Consiniili comitate totani familiam


Si

modera-

qua

nulla tragxdia, nulla rixa.

quid

exstitcrit,

protinus aut

mede-

autcomponit.

Neque quen quam unquam


fatalis

dimisit ut inimicum, aut ut


felicitas, in

inimicus.
vixit qui

Quin hujus domus


non provectus
sit

qua'daiu videtur

qua nemo
fiunae

ad raeliorem fortunam, nuUus unquam ullam


ullos rcperias,

labem conlraxit.
ut buic

Quin vix

quibus

sic

convenerit

cum

matre,

cum

noverca,

nam

pater jam alteram induxerat; utramque non minus


induxit tertiam, hac

adamavit ac matrem.

Nuper

Morus

sancte dejerat se nihil


sic affcctus
est

unquam
est,

vidisse melius.

Porro crga parentes ac liberos sororesquc

ut nee amet moleste, nee


alienissiraus.

usquam

desit oflicio pidatis.

Animus
quod

a soresse

dido lucro
putat,

Liberis suis semovit e I'acultatibus

illis satis

quod

supercst laigiter efl'uudit.

Cum
silium,

advocationlbus adhuc alerdur, nnlli non dedit aniicum vcrufnquc con-

magb

illorum

commodis prospiciens quam

suis

plerisque solitus per-

suaderc uti litem coniponereiit, minus enim hie fore dispendii.

Id

si

minus
li(i-

impdrabat, turn rationcm indicabat qua possent


garc,

quam

uiininio dispendio

quando quibusdani

liic

animus

est ut

litilwis etiani

ddectentur.

In urbc

Londouiensi, in qua natus


id

est,

annos aliquot judicem egit in causis civilibus


oneris

munus, ut minimum habet


ita

(nam nou

sedetur nisi die Jovis usque

ad

prandium)

cum

primis lionoriticum babdur.

Nemo

plures cansas absolvit,


praescriplo dcbent

nemo

se gessit iutegrius, remissa plerisque jwcuaia,

quam ex

..

APPx\DIX,
qui
litigant.

303
Ires

Siqiiidcm ante

litis

contestationcm actor depoiiit


fas cbt exigcre.

drachmas,
cffecit,

totidem reus, nee amplius qiiicquani


fivitati suae longe cliarissinius
cssct.

His moribus

ut

Dfcreverat autem bac fortuna esse con-

tentus, qua; ct satis babcret auctorilatis, iiec tanieu cssct giavibus obnoxia periculis.

Semel atque iterum extrusus


gessissct,

est

in legationem, in

qua cum

se

cordatissime

non conquievit serenissimus rex Henricus, ejus

iioininis octavus,

do?

nee honiineni in aulam suam pertraberef.

Cur enim non dieam

pcrtrabcret

NuUus unquam
gere.

vcbeaientius ambiit in
esset

aulam

admitti, quiui bic sluduit cffu-

Verum cum

optinio regi in aninio fumiliam suam eruditis, gravibus,

cordatis et integris viris diifertam reddere,


prirais accivit
;

cum

alios permullos, turn

Morum

in

quern sic in intimis babet, ut a se


est,

nunquam
visum

patiatur disccdere.

Sive

seriis

utendum

nibil illo eonsultius

sive

est regi fabulis

amas-

nioribus laxare

animum,

nullus

comes
sic

festivior.

Sxpe

res

arduae judiccm gra-

vem

ct

cordatum postulant, bas

Morus

discutit ut utraque pars babcat gra-

tiam.

Nee tamen ab

eo quisquam impetravit, ut

munus a quoquara

acciperet.

Felices res publicas, si

Mori

similes raagistratus ubique praeficeret princeps

Nee

interim ullura accessit suparcilium.


et

Inter tantas negotiorum raolcs, et ve-

terum araiculorum meminit,


dignate valet, quicquid

ad

literas

adamatas subindc

redit.

Quicquid

apud amplissimum regem

gratia pollet, id

omne juanimus
;

vandx

reipublicse, juvandis araicis impendit.

Semper quidem

adfuit

de cunctis benemerendi cupidissimus, mireque pronus ad misericordiam

eum

nunc magis

excrit,

quando

potest plus prodesse;

Alios pecunia sublevat, alios

auctoritate tuetur, alios


test, his consilio

commcndatione provehit
;

quos alioqui juvare non po-

succurit

nullum unquam a

se tristcm dimisit. Diceres


sibi

Morum
aliena-

esse
si

publicum omnium inopum patronum. Ingens lucrum


sublevavit,
si

putat accessisse,
si

quem oppressum

perplexum

et

impeditum

explicuit,

tum

redegit in gratiam.

Nemo

lubentius collocat beneficium,


sit

nemo minus
comes

ex-

probrat.

Jam cum

tot

nominibus

felicissimus, et felicitatis

fere soleat

esse jactantia,
set

nullum adiiuc mortalium mihi videre contigit qui longius abes.

ab hoc vitio^

Sed ad studiorum commemorationera redco, quae


potissimum conciliaruut.

Primam

aetatcm

me Moro, mihiqne Morum carmine potissimum exercuit, moz

J04
diu luctatus
est ut

APPENDIX.
prosam orationcm reddcrct moUiorem, per omne
sit

scripli
?

go

nus stylum exerccns, qui cujusmodi

quid

attinct

commemorare

lib! prae-

sertim qui libros ejus semper habeas in manibus.


dclcctatus est, ct in his, materiis adoxis,
cxercitatio.

Declamationibus prsecipuc

quod

in his acrior sit

ingeniorum
Piatonis

Unde

adolcscens

ctiamnum dialogum moliebatur, quo


defendit.

communitatem ad uxores usque


in

Luciani Tyrannicida: respondit, quo


;

nrgumenlo

me
fiat,

vohjit aiitagonistam habere

quo wrtius pcriculum

faceret,

ccquid profccisset in hoc genere.


quibus rebus
potissiinum
ut minus

Utopiam hoc

consilio edidit, ut indicaret


;

commode habeant
mox
yter

respublica?

scd

Brilannicam

eilinxit,

quam

habct peiiitus perspectam cognitamque.

Secundum

librum prius scripserat per otium,

occasionem primum adjecit extem-

pore; atque hinc nonnuUa dictionis

inaequalittis.

Vix alium reperias qui

felicius dicat
et

extempore, adco

fclici

ingcnio

felix lin-

gua

subservit.

Ingenium prxscus

ubique prxvolans, memoria parata, quae

cum omnia
lempus aut

liabeat velut in numerate,


res postulat.

promte

et iiicontanter suggerit

quicquid

In disputationibus nihil fingi potest acatius, adeo ut

summis

ctiam theologis ssepe negotium facessat, in ipsorum arena vcrsans.

Joannes Coletus, vir acris exactique judicii, in familiaribus coloquiis subindc


dicere solet Brilannu non
giis ingeniis floreat.
tiisi

unicum

esse int^cniuni,

cum

hiec insula tot egrc-

Verx

pietatis

non

indiligcns cultor est, etiamsi

ab omni

superstitione alienissimus.

Habet suas

lioras

quibus Deo

litet

prccibus, non ex

more sed

e pectore depromtis.

Cum

amicis sic fabulatur de vita futuri secuh",

ut agnoscas ilium ex animo loqui, neque sine optima spe.

Ac

talis

Morus

est

ctiam

in aula.

Et postea sunt qui putcnt christianos non

iiiveniri nisi in

mo-

nasteriis.

Talcs viros cordatisslmus rex in familiam


admittit,

suam atque adeo

in cubi-

culum non solum


pertrahit.
siliis,

vcrum etiam

invitat,

ncc invitat

modo verum

etiam

Hos habet

arbitros ac testes perpetuos vitae suae, hos habet in con-

hos habet ilinerum comitcs.

Ab

his stlpari gaudet, potius

quam luxu

perditis jnvcnibus aut mulierculis, aut ctiam torquatis Midis, aut Insinceris ofiiciis
;

quorum

alius

ad volupfatcs incptas avocet,

alius

ad tyrannidem in-

flammct, alius ad expilaudum populura novas technas suggerat.

In hac aula

si vixisses

Hultche, sat scio Tursnm aliam aulara describeres, et


tii

?7rfjoKfos esse desincrcs,

quanqnam

quoque cum eo principe

vi^is ut

irite-

APPENDIX.
griorem nee optare possis. Stromerus ac Coppus.

305
rebus optimis faveant, veluti
1

Neque desunt qui


ista

SeJ quid

paucitas a

(aiitma

examea

insigtiiuna

virorum, Monfjoii, Linacri, Pacsei, Coleti, Stocschleii, Latimeri, Mori, Tonstalli, Clcrici,

atque aliorum his adsimilium

quorum queincumque

norainaris,
est

mundum omnium
haudquaquam

virttitum ac disciplinarum semel dixeris.

Mihi vero spes

vulgaris, fore ut Albertus,

unicum

his

temporibus nostrx Ger-

manise ornamotitum, et plures sui similes in suam allegat familiam, et ceteris


principibus gravi
ant.
sit

exempio, ut idem

et

ipsi suae

quisque domi faccre studeartifice

Flabes

imaginem ad optimum exemplar a pessimo

non optime
Sed

delineatam.
illud

Ea

tibi

minus placebit,

si

continget JVIorum nosse propius.

tamen interim cavi, ne mihi

possis impitigere

quod

tibi

minus paruerim,
scri-

neve semper opprobres niraium breves epistolas.

Etiamsi hacc nee mihi

benti visa est longior nee tibi legenti, sat scio prolixa videbitur;

id faciei

Mori

nostri suavitas.

Verum, ne

nihil

ad postremam tuam epistolam respon(Epist. 447).

deam, &c.

Antwerpiae,

X.

Cal.

Aug. Anno 1519.

Vol.

I.

APPENDIX.

JErasmiis Rot,

GuUclmo Budteo,

S.

D.

Est quoil JMoro gratuleris.

Niim rex

Iiunc, ncc aiu-

bientem nc(? flagitantem, munerc magiiifico honeslavit, atldito salario ncqiia-

quam posnUendo

est cniin priacipi

suo a thesauris.

Ea

functio apuil

Briest

tannos, ut est splcndida

cum

priinis atf]ue honoriflca, ita

non adinudum

obnoxia nee iiividix


Tis,

riec

molestis nej^otiis.

Erat competitor, lioino

sat gralios-

qui sic ambiebat Iioc muiieris, ut non gravarelur suo victu ciboque gcrerc.
rex optiinus hie ccrtissininm in

At

Moruni

favoris

argumentiim dedit, qui non


gratuitiim magistratuni ad-

ambienti snlariimi ctiam addere malucrit,


inittcre.

quam
sit

Ncc hoc

contentiis princeps benignissiinus, equitis aurati digni(atcni


est qiiin
illiim

adjecit.

Ncqiic dubitandum

amplioribus ornnmentis

ali-

quando cumulaturus, quum


longe procllvius
est

scsc oiFerct occasio.

Siquidcnx caclibes cveherc

principibus.
sit

At Morus

sic est

admixtus ordini conjugum,

ut nee uxoris obitu


erat,

emancipandus.

Priorcm enim,

quam

virginera

dux-

extubt

et

banc viduus viduam duxit.

Sed hunc principis

animum hoc
pares cssent

magis gratulor IMoro, quod quicquid huic


id existiraem bonis sludiis accc<)ere
;

accesserit vel autoritatis vel gratias,


illc

quibus

sic favet,

ut

si

animo

I'acultates,

non decsscl apud Britannos

feiicibus ingeniis

candidus ac

beiiignus Maecenas.

Solent aulie principum idem facere

quod mcdici, qui cor-

pus

sibi

(raditum primura inaniunt, niox implent ac vegctant.

Nee

diibito

quin Moro noslro simile quippiam acciderit hactenus.


tute melius ncsti.

Quid

libi venerit

usu,

Ef tamen

illius bciiignitatem scnsenmt ingcnia,

quum

adeo

non abuiidaret

illi

quod

largiretur, ut sere gravaretur alieno.

Nee hac
studiis

parte solum

ornat studia,

quod

ipso doctissiraus candide favet

doctis omnibus,

verum eliam quod universam familiam


;

honestissimis literarum

excolendam curat

novo quidem hactenus exemplo,


Habet

sed

quod

brevi

plures ni fallor sint imitaluri, adeo felicitcr succedit.

filias Ires,

quarum

maxima

natu Wargareta

jam nupta

est juveni,

primum

beafo, deindc mori-

bus integerrimis ac modest issim is, postremo non alieno a


nee a teneris annis curavit imbuendas,
politioribus Uteris.
I'iliabus tribus

nostris stndiis.

Om-

primum

castis

ac Sanctis moribus, deinde

quartam adjuuxit puellam, quam benig-

APPENDIX.
n/tatis gratia alit, ut
illis sit

30T

soJalis.

Habct privig^am mira forma raroque

ingenio pudlam, annos

j;iin

aliquot

nuptam juveni

iioa indocto, sed

cujus

moribus

nihil sit niagis

aureum.

llnbet filium ex uxore priore, natura annos

plus minus Iredecira, ex libcris natu ininimii:Ti.


milii

An(c annum visum

est i\loro

specimen aliquod exhibere, quantum


scriberent, et

in lileris profecissent.

Jussit ut
est
illi

omnes ad me

quidem suo

quisqiie Marte.
est

Nee argumentum
;

suppedilatum,

nee in sermone quicquam


ille

correclum

eteuim

cum

schedas obtulissent patri castigandas,


jussit ut

velut offensus

incommoda

scriptura,

eadem accuratius ac purius

describerent.

Id ubi factum
misit.

est,

ne syl-

laba

quidem mutata,

literas oljsignatas

ad me

Credc mihi, Budae,

nihil asque
talis,

sum admiratus.

In sensibus nihil erat ineptum aut puellare; sermo

ut sentires esse quotidie proticientium.

Hunc chorum amabilem una cum


in

sponsis

duobus domi habet.


lliis

NuTlam

illic

videbis otiosam, nullam ineptiis muliebribus occupatam.

T. Livius

est

manibus.

Nam

eo progressa; sunt, ut auctores hujusmodi legant ct intellinisi si

gant citra interpretem,

quod

incidat verbum,

quod me quoque

fortassis

aut mci similem fuerat remoraturum.

Uxor, ingenio magis ac return usu

quam

eruditione valcns, mira dexteritate moderatur

omne

collegium,

l^yoJiaVlK

cujuspiam vicibus fungcns, pcnsum cuique prasscribens aique exigens, neque


sinens ccssare

qucnquam nee

frivolis

occupari.

Soles in Uteris tuis subindc

queri,

quod tua causa male audiret

philologia, quae tibi

duo mala
agit, ut

conciliasset.

Valetudinis ac rei familiaris dispendium.

At Moiiis noc
hoc

omnibus no-

minibus,

et

apud
sit

oniiJcS l)ene audiat

Uteris debere se prasdicans,

quod

prosperiorc
gratiosus,

valetudine,

quod optimo quod


sibi

principi,

quod

suis et extcris charus et


patriae

quod
et

re lautiore,

quod amicis jucundior, quod


aula;

quod cognatis

affinibus utiUor,

quod ad
vitae

commcrcium quod ad pro-

cerum convictum quod ad omnem


que quod superis
gratior.

consuetudinem accommodalior, deniaudicbant studia, quod sensum comest profeclio,

Primum male
cultori.

munem

adimerent addicto

Nulla

nulla negotia tarn


;

mulla tam ardua, qux


reperies qui
ciltor,

libellos

Moro de manibus

exculiant

et

tamen vix alium


fa-

magis

sit

omnibus omnium horarum homo, qui ad obscquium


in

ad congressus magis obvius,

coUoquio magis alaccr, quique tantum

verae prudentiae
est,

cum

tanta

morum

suavitate conjunxerit.

Quibus rebus factum


vitae vel

ut

quum

ante paucos dies litera^m

amor ad omne

praesidium vel

n03

APPENDIX.
iiiutilis",

ornamcnlmn liaberdur
majorum imasiiuibus
iiarciiis ipsis

nunc nemo pcnc

sit

magmlum,

qui

lii)cro5

ul

ilignos agiioscat, nisi bonis lilcris criulitos.


viJotiir,

Quiii ct

mo-

b )na rcgalium di-conim pais abcssc

in quibus litcrarum

leritia ilesulcretur.

Jam nemincm
litcras ct

fere niorlaliiim
ct

non liabebat

luce pcrsuasio, scxui fueminino

ad caslitatom

ad fainaiu

esse inulilcs.
luilii

Nee

ipse

quondam

prorsus

ab

iiac

abliorrui scntciilia; vcruiu lianc

Moms

peaitus excussit aiiimo.

Etcniin quuni duabus rebus potissiniuni pei iclitetur puellaium castitas, olio ac
lascivis lusibus,

ab horum utroque litcrarum arcet amor.

Nee

alia res melius

tuctur
sunt,

famam

iutegram,

quam mores

incontamiiuUi.

Nee

ulla:

firmius casta

quam

qua; judicio casta2 sunt.

Nequc

vero improbo consilium corum,

qui manuariis opcris prospiciunt pudicitia- (iliarum.

Verum

nulla res sic <oI'ructus,

tum pucUx
animus ab

pectus occupat, ut studium.

Alque

liinc pruiter

hoc

quod

otio pernicioso proliibetur, liauriuntur


.et

optima praecepta, qua; raeniMultis simpiicilas ct

lem ad virlutcm
inscitia pudicitiae

instituaiit

et inllamment.

rerum

jacturam

attulit,

priusquam

scirent
sit

quibus rebus tantus

thesaurus pcriclitaretur.
liabeant morigcras
si

Nequc video cur

maritis

ractucndum,
siiit,

iic

minus

doctas habeant,

nisi si

qui

tales

ut ea velint cxi-

gerc ab uxoribus qua^ non sunt cxigciida a probis matronis.


Icntia nihil est intractabilius inscitia.

Irao

mea

sen-

Cerle hoc proestat animus cultura stu-

diorum

exercit<itus, ut intelligat aequas

probasque rationes, vidcatque quid dcpersuasit, qui

ceat quid expediat.

Atque projicmodum

rem docuit.

Ad hxc

quum

jucuiiditas (irmita.sque coiijugii

magis ab animorum bcuevolentia, quam


(enacioribus vinculis junguntur quos in-

corporum amorc prodeiscatur, mullo


geniorum quoque charitas copulat
agnoscit ct prcccptorcni.
supcrstitionis.
;

magisque vcretur maritum uxor, qucra


pietatis,

Nee ideo minus habebit


nialo talenlum

quia minus habct


tria

Equidcm
viliata.

auri puri,
alias

quam

talenta

multo

plumbo scoriaque

Audimus passim

mulicrcuias sic a coiicioric

rcdcuutcs, ut prxdicent mirifice fuissc coucionatum qui dixit, ac

vuUum
sit

ho-

minis grapliicc depingunt


dixit rcccnscrc possunt.
bine dclcctu
;

ccterum nequc quid dixerit, nequc quale


tibi

quod

Hx

totam pene concioncm ordinc rcferunt non


si

si

quid

stulte, si

quid impie,
fieri

quid extra rem


id

eflutiit ecclesiastes

(qucmadmodum
vel dclcatiui.

liodie iion raio

videmus)

norunt vol ridcre vcl nrgligcrc

Atque hoc

dcmum

c^t

audire sacras conciones;

cum hujusmodi

APPENDIX.
demum
vere

309
islis

jucundum
in

est conviverc.

Plurimum enim ab

dissenlio,

qui

coHJiigcs

non

alium usum babent

quam ad

obscqiiiiim vohiptatis,

quam ad
faniiliam

rem magis

apposiffe sunt semifatux.

Pectus habcat oporfcf,

qux

contineat in officio,

qus

liberorum mores fingat ac formct,

qux

marito per

omnia

satisfaciat.

Caetcrum

cum proximo coUoquio

illud objccissem

Moro, quod

si

quid huin-

manitus accidcret, fore ut gravius discruciaretur earum desiderio in quibus


stituendis taiitum

insumsisset operse, respondit incontanter,


potest,

si

quid accidcrit

quod

viliari

non

malim

eas mori doctas

quam

indoctas.

Moxque

milii

venit in

mcntem

Pliocionis, ni fallor, apoplithegma, cui bibituro cicutam


vir innocens morieris ; quid, inquit, ais
ilia

cum

uxor ncchimartt mi

uxor,

anme

vialles

nocentem mori ? Interim


duces qnosdam cximios

cogitatio subiit

animum meum,
ct pluribus

ut vos duos ceu


si

in

boc laudis genere componam, veluti

quis Camil-

lum commiUat cum Scipionc Africano.


culo

Tu

annis et iniquiore sc-

cum

lilerarum hoslibus es contiiclatus, lioc carte calculo iloro superior.


in
filiis

Cseterum quod tu
bitat et in

tantum ac fratribus ausus

es moliri,

hoc

ille

non du-

uxoribus

et in filiabus facere, fortiter


ille te

confempla novi exempli invidia;


libris edilis

quo nomine vicissim

prxcellif.

Tu

rursum

ulriusquc litera-

ture proventum magis auxisti


in

pobtcrum aucturus,
cUirgiri.

pulum
quod

quam ille, copiosius eliam, uti nobis pollicemur, modo coeperis opes tuas a scriuiis dcpromlas.in poQuanquam ct a Moro magnum aliquid cxspcclat juventus,
si

ille

mullum adbuc

absit a scnectulc, ct

patrem

liabct

non minorcm annis

octoginta mire vircnti senectutc, ut vix alium reperias qui bcllius gcstct seta-

lem

uncle licet et

Moro

lougacvitatem ominari. &c.

Ex

rure Anderlacensi,

Anno

152! (Epist. 603.)

,310

APPENDIX.

Qulidmus Covrinus Nucerinus Fhilippo Montaiio,

S.

D.

QuoNiAM

juxia Pjlliagorac scnteutiam oportet

omnia

esse

commuiiia, reckesse.

coUogit Jiiiripidcs, et tlolorcs inUr amicos oporterc


ii^itur,

communes
omiii

Accipics
gciierc

vir amicissimc, ab amicu minime


:

laeta, seil

lacrymarum

bonis omnibus ticplorauda


pcrtulissc

quanquam

arbitror

iamam

istuc

jamdudum omnia
baronis inciyti,

priusquam ad nos, dc morte quorundam npud Anglos insignium

vjrorum, sed prxcipue Tbomae Mori,


ac supremi
judici:>,

dum
;

viveret ejus rcgai

qucm

illi

cancc4Lrium appellant.

apud cam

gcntem alia major, cxcepto rege

coque

Qua dignitatc non est qunm proiiil, aurcum sccp-

trum imposila corona cxsarea gcslalur ad unum lams, ad alterum hbcr.


vero
tur,

Qux

sum

narraturus, parlim e scbedis Galbce scriplis, quae


;

Jiic

circumfcrun-

desumpsi, partim c rumoribus

nam

nihil

burum

vidi.

ISed priust^uura

aggrcdiar, paucis dcscribam L/ondoniciisis urbis situni.

Civitas in latum angusfa, ad

Thamysim flumcn
nomcn

sic

in

longnm porrccta

est,

ut videatur non posse desinere, mide et

videtur inditum; siquidim

apud

Flandros loca mari vicina Dinien appellant.

Indidem dictum videtur Gal-

iiarum

Lugdunum,

quasi dicas fo/igas ripas.

Ad

orienfem in extremo habet

arccm bene munitam, qua regcs interdum utuntur, vulgus Turrim appellat.
Sed in cadem servari solent
yiri

nobdi

s,

auf alias dignitatc

quapiam prxmiIn allero

nentcs, qui videntur aliquid adversus rcgiam majeslatem deliquisse.

extremo ad occasum insignc monastermni

est

Benedictinorum, vulgus appellat


vcteris, sed

Wcstmonastcrium quo nunc


regcs

ct

buic proximiim regis palatium structune


delectantur.

parum

Palatio adjuncta est


judiccs.

domus

spaciosissima,

nullis fulta columnis, in

qua sedent

L'trumque xdUicium ilumini im-

minet, ut bine

illinc

cymba

vebi possint.

In hac arce Thomas IVIorus posteaquam


calend. Jul. ann.
pitis

raultis

mensibus

fuisset captivus,

Dom. m.d.xxxv productus


tribunal

est

ad modo diclam curiam, caIbat reus

causam dicturus apud

judicum a rcgc delegatorum.

baculo innixus tarn longam viam, corporc gravi aegrotationc in carcere dcbili-

APPENDIX.
tato, nihil
ticuli

311

tamen perturbationis vuUu


illi

prse sc ferens.

Primum
qui

reciUiti sunt ar-

criminum quae
-Nortfolciij

objicicbantur.
in

ISIox cancellarius

Moro

successit,

acdux

hunc

modutn

rciitn

appcUarunt.

En

vides Magister

More

(sic appellant

mediocri dignilate proeditos) to


tc,
si

graviter deliquisse in regiam majcslatem.


sipiscas, et abjures istam
|)erstitisti,

Atlamen spcraraus

niodo rc-

obstinatam opinioncin, in qua liactcnus tarn procacitcr

veniam a

regis

dementia consequuturum.'

Ad
tias

hsec

Moras

'

Domini mei, ego summo

cordis afFectu

ago vobis gra-

pro

ista vestra

arnica erga

me

voluntate
in

tantum

illud oro

Deum

orani-

potentem, conftrmare dignefur

mc

hac qua nunc sum sententia, ut in ea

perseverem usque ad mortem.

Cseterum

quum

reputo

quam

prolixi

quamque

graves arliculi sunt quibus oneror, vereor ne mihi nee ingenium suppetat, nee

memoria, ncc oratio qux

sufficiat

ad respondendum omnibus

praesertim

quum

in carcerc

tam diu fuerim

detentus, in

quo gravi xgrolatione contraxi

corporis debilitatem,

qus me nunc

ctiara babet.'

Turn jussu judicum


quotus
est institutum

allata est sella, in

qua

sederet.

Ubi

consedisset, prosc-

sermoueni hunc in

modum.

Quod ad primum

attinet articulum, qui

conafur osteiidere

meam

in re-

gem
gotio

malevolentiam in ncgotio posterioris matrimonii, contiteor ingenue,


restitissc
illius

me
-

Semper

serenissimx majcstati.
dicere,

Nee

est

animus super hoc nc-

quicquam aliud
:

quam quod

hactenus semper dixi, ad hoc urgente


ita

me

conscientia

per

quam

ut

non debebam,
ulla proJitio

nee volcbam princiiM;m

meum
prin'

celare veritatcm.

Nee

liic est

qnx

infenditur; quin potius, ni id


et

fecissem, prxsertim in re tanti momcnti,

untie

pendebat mea sententia,

cipis houos, et regni tranquillitas, turn vere fui.sscm,

quod nunc

objicitur,

ma-

levolus, perfidus ac proditor.

Ob

hoe delictum

(si

modo

delictum appellan-

dum

est)

gravissimas dedi pa.>nas, exufus omnibus facultatibus meis, ac pcrfui detentus.

petuo addictus carccri, in quo menses jam quindecem totos


his omissis
objicitur,

Sed

tantum ad ca respondebo quse sunt

liujus ncgotii prsecipua.

Quod
con

mc

incurrissc in poeoara violatas constitutionis,

qu proximo

312
silio proillla os(,

APPRNDIX.
mc jam
in carcere

agonto

quasi malitioso anioio,

]iorfitliose,

ac proJitoric rcgix majestati dctraxerim famam, honorcm ac dignitatem qux


illi

per diclam constiditioncm erat (ributa, videlicet quoJ ibi declaratnr

snb^

Jesu Ciiristo

supremnm caput

ecclesiw

Anglicanx

inprimis res|iondel)o ad

hoc quod
tis illiiis

milii ol)jicitiir,

quod Domino

Secretario llcgis ac veneral)iii raajesta-

consil

oiftu^

qux mea
tantum

esset

do hoc edicto sententia,


esse,

nihil aliud

voluerim rcspondcre,

quam me jam mundo mortuum


metlitari
in

nee istiusmodi n&!

godisnmplius
ChrisH.

^olicitari, sod

passione domini nostri Jesu

Dico

me

per islam vestram constitutionem ob hoc silcntium non posse

(1 .;5in;iri ca|>itis,

co quod nee vestrum cdictum, nee

uUx

leges

mnndi

possuiit

qtieiiqnam ob silenfium a.lilicere morti, sed tantum ob dictum aut perpetratuni


faciuus.

Dc

occullis

enim

solus judical Deus.'

Ad

haec respondit procurator regius interpellans

at tale silentium, inquit,


ilicta constitutione.

cvidcns

argumentum

est

animi male

senticntis

de jam
si

Nam

omnis subditus sinccrus ac fidWIs regix majestati,


terrogetur, tenclur ct obligatur citra

de dicta constitutione in-

omnem

dissimul itionem respondere cate-

goric

cgium cdicium

esse

bonum, justum ac sanctum.

Ad qux
quam

IVIorus

'

Si

verum

est

quod habetur

in legibus,

eum

qni tacct

videri consentire,

improbavit.

meum silentium confirmavit potius Jam quod dicis, omnem subditum


si

vestram constitutionem
fidelem obligari ut re-

spondeat caterorice

inlerrogclur,

&c.
et

rcspondeo,

bonx

fidci
ulli

subditum
alii

magis obligatum

esse

Deo, conscientix,
si talis
<

animx sux, quam


mea,

rci in

boc mundo, maxime


scditionis pariat

onscicntia, qualis est

nihil ofi'cndiculi, nihil

(i.minosuo.

Nam

illud

pro certo vobis aflirmo, quod nuUi

raortalium

unquam detexerim hac

in re conscieutiam

meam.

'

Vcnio nunc ad secundum accusationis caput, quo arguor contra dictam

constitutionem molitus ac machinatus fuisse, eo quod ad Kofii-nsem scripserim

octo pariaepislolarum, quibus ilium animarim adversus istud cdicium.

Kqui-

dcm vehementer optarim


vincerent vel liberarent.

epistolas hie proferri ac recitarri,

qux me

vel con-

Cxierum quando

illx,

quemadmodum

prxdicatis,

per episcopum exustx sunt, ipse non gravabor recitarc sententiam earum.

In

earum quibusdam agebatur de

uostris privatis negotiis,

pro vctcre nostra ami-

APPENDIX.
cida ac familiarUato.
(eras
tioiic.

313
li-

la ua;i qu:ulam conliticbatur responsum atl cpiscopi


et

quibus scire cupicliat, quLl

quo pacto

rcspon.lissL-in

do

ista coastitu-

Ad
i.>sc
nii)il

id iiilul aliud

lescripsi, nisi
Aiiiiiia;

me jam meam

composuLssu conscicrtteste

tiain,

compoiiertt suam.
aliud
ill

mese periculo, ac
!

Deo

vobls asse-

vcro,

illls

Uteris a

me

scriptiim luisse

Haniin

igitur caiissa noii

possum iKf vestram

coiisiifutioiicni

addici

mi)rti.

'

Superest

tcrtiiis

arficulus,

qm

intendif, nno.I quiiin


iitrii.qiie

de vpstra constitutiono

examinarcr, dixeriiu earn esse similcm gladio


si

secanti, proptcrea

quod

quis vdlet

cam

scrvare,

[x-rderet aiii.uain

si

contradicere, pcrderet corpus.

Idem q.ioniam,

ut dicilis, re.poi.dit cpiscopiis

Iluftbiisis,

perspicunm
fuisse
est

esse infer

nos fuisse conspiratio.iem.


nisi coiiditionaliter
:

Ad Uxc

respondeo,

me uu.iquam

loquutum,

sic videlicet, si (ale asset

cdictum, quaiis

ghidius utrin-

que incidcns, quo pacto


lura.
If.ec

posset quis evitare, quiri in allerum incideret pericu-

mea

fuit oratio.

Qiiomodo rcsponderit episcopus,

ncscio

si

il-

lius oratio

congruebat, id ncquaquam accidit ex conspirationc, sed potius ex ini^eniorum ac doctrinaz similitudine. Brevitcr: illud pro certo ha-

cum mea

betotc,

menunquam qnicquam
:

raalifiosc fuisse

loquutum advcrsus vestram conciementiam aliquid malitiose

stitutionem

at fieri potuit, ut

ad benignam

regis

fuerit deiatura.'

Post hsEc vocati sunt per


illius

quondam ex

ostiariis

duodccim
super

viri,

juxfa gentis

consuetudinem, quibus

traditi sunt articuli, ut

illis

consultarent, ac

post consultationcm judicarcnt, ac pronunciarent,


tiose
obstitisset

utrum Tliomas Morus mali-

prjcdictx constitution! regis, an non.


secessissenf, reversi sunt
est,

Qui quum per horx


per Dn. Caucella-

quartam partem

ad principcs ac judiccs delegatos, ac


est raorte.

pronunciarunt guilty, hoc

dignus

Ac mox

rium

lata est sententia

juxta tenorem novas constitution is.

His ita peractis Thomas Morus hunc in modum orsusest loqui: ' Age, quando sum conderanatus, quo jure Deus novit, ad exonerandam conscientiam
liberius eloqui

volo

quod

sentio

de vestra constitutione.

Primum
in

illud dico,

me
lai-

septem annis intendisse

animum studiumque meum

istam causam, verum

hactenus in nuUo doctorum ab ecclciia probatorum repcri scriptum, quod

VOL.

I.

514

APPENDIX.

cu, aut ut vocant, sccularis, possit aut dcljcat esse caput status spiritualis aut
ecclesiastici.'

Hie

canc;llarius

intcrrumpens Mori sermouem, Dominc More,

inquit, itanc tu vis haberi sapicntior, nieliorisquc conscicntia:


pis, tota

omnibus episcoDominc,
ct

nobilitate, toto

denique regno

Ail

qnx Morus

inquit,

Cancellarie, pro

uno episcopo qucni


centum,

iiabcs

tux opiniouis, ego sanctos


sentientes, et

ortbo-

(loxos viros liabeo plurcs


cilio,

mecum

pro unico vestro con-

quod

tale sit

Deus novit, pro nie habeo omnia concilia generalia annis


:

;ibbinc luiilc celebrata


cbristiani regna

et

pro uno regno, babeo Franciam cseteraquc orbis


interpelians
:

omnia.

Hie Dux Nortfokii

Nunc More,

inquit>

pcrspicuc liquet tua malevolcntia.

Ad qu2 Morus
stantes) ut

Mii/ Lord, (sic Angli compellant insigni dignilate


incitat nialevolentia, sed
teste

prx-

hoc loquar non

cogit necessitas ad exoner-

andam

conscientiam

meam,

Deo, qui

solus scrutatur corda


esse,

hominum.

Prxtcrea dico
V()>

et illud,

constitutionem vestram

pcrpcram factam, eo quod

professi estis, ct jurcjurando vosmetipsos obstrinxistis, nihil

unquam

moli-

turos adversus sanctum ccclesiam,

qux

per universam ditionem christianam

unica

est,

Integra et individua, neque vos soli ullam habctis anctoritalera citra

aliorum christianorum consensum condendi legem, aut instiluendi concilium


adversus unionem
et

concordiam

christianitatis.

IVec rae fugit,

qnamobrcm

vobis condcmnatus sim, videlicet ob id,

quod nunquara voluerim

assent ire in
niiseri-

negotio novi matrimonii regis.


cordia, fore ut

Confido autem de divina bonitale ac


olim Paulus Steplianum pcrsecutus
in
est

quemadmodum
iidera

usque ad

mortem,

et

tamen

nunc unaninies sunt

coelo, ita nos qui

nunc
et

dis-

cordes sunius in hoc

mundo,

iu future seculo paritcr simus Concordes,

per-

fecta charitate unanimes.

Hac

spc frctus precor Deuiu ut vos scrvet una


!

cum

rege, cique dare dignetur bouos cousultores

His

ita pcractis,

Thomas Morus

reductus est in Turrim.

Hie

obiter accidit

spectaculum ipsa condemnatione

miserabilius.

Margareta filiarum Mori natu


dignitate cou-

maxima, mulier prxter cximiam formae venustatem cum surama


junctam, judiclp, ingenio, moribus

et eruditione patris simillinia, per


injecit, ct

mediam

populi turbam, pcrque satclUluin n.rma semet

ad parentcra peuctravit.

Quuui

et

mulier

esset, et

natura cumprimis verccuuda, tamen et

metum

et

pvidorera

omtiem excusscrat

impoicns animi dolor,

cum

audisset patrem in

APPEND
curia morti addictum esse.
gredcretur.

X.
arcis

51b
portam inali-

Hoc

accidit

priusquam Morus

Ibi in carissimi parentis collurn irrucns, arctissimo


Cseteruin ne verbuni

complexu

quandiu tcnuit eum.

quidem

ijiterim

potuit proloqui.

Cur^e, inquit tragicus, Icves loquuntui, ingentes stupent.

Movit

stipatores,

tameisi duros, boo spectaculum.

Horum
nosti

i(aque permissu

Morus

his verbis

consolatus est filiam


sic

Margareta, patienter feras, nee


secreta cordis

te discrucies

amplius

est

voluntas

Dei; jampridem
gentis,
si

mei
ilia

simulque dedit
digressa esset
in-

osculum ex consuetudine

quern dimittunt.
rccurrit, et

At

cum

ad decern

vel

duodecim passus, denuo

amplexa parentcm rursus

lixsit collo illius, sed

elinguis prse doloris

magnitudine.

Cui pater

nihil lo-

quutus
moto.

est,

tantuni erumpebant lacrjmae, vultu taraen a constantia nihil di-

Ncc

aliud supremis verbis raandavit,

quam

ut

Deum

pro aiiima patris

deprecaretur.
excidere.

Ad

hoc

pietatis

certamen plurimis e popular! turba lacrynijc


ferura et

Erant

et inter satellites,

immite genus hominuni, qui


pietatis afFectus

la-

crymas
res
sit,

tenere

non potuerunt.

Nee mirum, quum

adeo valida

ut immitissimas etiam feras raoveat.


sit

Hie apud
pectus.

se quisque rcputet

quam

valido ariete turn pulsatum


(piAoVo^fos,

Thorns Mori
magis
:

Erat cnim erga

suos omnes adeo

ut

non

alius

sed earn filiam ut erat eximiis


fortiter cxccpisse

praedita dotibus, ita diligebat impcnsius.

Morum

sententiam

mortis, aut etiam carnificis securim,

minus admirandum existimo, quam pij-

tatcm erga suos potuisse vincere.

Nihil enim addubito, quin hie doloris gla-

dius crudelius vulneravit Mori prseordia,

quam

ilia carnificis securis,

quw

collum amputavit<

Die Mcrcurli scquente, hoc

est

septimo die Julii, productus

est in

planiciem,

qu^

est

ante arccm.

Mos

est illic ut afficicndi supplicio,

de ponte plebem al-

loquantur.
ut pro ipso

At Morus paucissimis

verbis est usus,

tantum orans qui aderant,

Deum

orarent in hoc

mundo, se

vicissim in altero

pro
ut

ipsis.

Mox

hortabatur atquc instanter rogabat, orarent

mundo precaturum Deum pro rage,

illi

dignaretur impertire
regis

bonum

consilium, contestans se mori fidelem ac

bonum

ministrum, ac Dei inprimis.

Uxc

loquutus prompte constanti-

que vultu

flexis

genibus cervicem posuit securim exeepturus, non sine gravi

multorum gemitu.

Erat enim bonis omnibus carissiraus.

Quae hactenus narravi,

fere continebantur in

scbeda apud Parisios jactata,

Ss

.516

Ari'KNDlX.
Quisqtiis

:tc

yxr inanus honiiaum vuUtaiUe.

au(om

sciipsil,

videtur ac(u>

iii-

(crfuissc.

Qux

deinccps refeiam,

pardm
li.

ex amicoriiiu Uteris, partini e riiino-

libus arco]ii.
cpiscoptis
iiistraiulLs

I'aucis ante ilicbus,

c.

XV.

t'al.

Julias Joatiiu's Fi>c)icrus,


au:>(ci'ilali*,

liulloiisiii,

qui tuin vitx

sancliiiiuiiia

alque

(uni aiimi-

sacramcntis, turn assiJuitato docciuii voce siinul et sciiplis, deniqiic


bciiignitate in studiuiius,

mira

libcralilatc in egcnos,

vcruQi a^cbat cpi'icu]mni,

ex urcc dicia

in

qua

captivo:} (enebatur, pruductus est, ct


est,
fre(|uciili

ad curiam, qua: ut
arinntorum
sti-

ante dixi, Wcstmonastcrio proxima

sati-llituin

patu jierduclus

est,

partiin navigio, parliiii cqiio,

ob corjjusculi dcbilitatcm,
;

quam

prxter xtalem auxerat carccris iricommodilas


ct jejuniis ct vigiliis ct studiis et

licet

ipse valetudincin

suam semper
altenuasset.

laburibus ac lacryinis vebemcntcr

Jllc

vero taroetsi non igiioraret ejus co^iiitiunis cuitum, nihil ta<


est,

men

porturbatus

sed

i^acido, ac prope ctiam ad

bilaritatcm composito

vultu ad tribunal evocantil)US paruit.

Ibi juxfa niorem ejus rogionis qui-ni antea

descripsi, sentcnlia capitali daranatus est, sujjplicium daturas, simulatque rcgi

visum

csset.

Hoc adjectum
deduci.

suspicor,

si

forte

spc veniae ac supplicii nielu

j)osset a sententia

Mortis genus oral ct

fxdnm

et Lorribile,
:

quo tamen
ut crc-

fuerant

aflTecti

Cartnsiani aliquot, quos aiunt fuisse quindecim

quod

(lim vix possum adduci.

Carlusianis adjunctus est Keginaldus monaclius Bri-

gitlcnsis, vir aiigelico vnllu ct

anselico spiritu, sanique judicii

quod ex

illius

coUuquio comperi,

quum

in

comitatu Cardinalis Campegii versarer in Anglia.

Nam

Cartusianorum novi neminem.


suspensos laqueo, ac
igni,

Aiunt ex his quosdam


spirantibus

fuisse jjer

viam

tractos, dein

eliamnum

exsccta iiitcstina-s
fuisse
et,

quosdam eliam exusfos


Solet

sed

omnium

incrcilihilcm

constantiam.
vidctur Jioc

rumor rebus

tristibus

aliquid addere.

At

si

liic

vcrus

esse consilium

eorum qui

rcgio obsecundant aainio, ut immanitate suppliciorum


facile divinabant, instituluin

cxteros absterrcant.
iri,

Nam

plurimis improbatum

prxsertim

ccclesiaslicis, ct rcligioiiis studio deditis.

Sed ad Roffensem epis-

copura rcdco.

Is

accepta tam horrendac mortis scntcntia,

quum

satcllilibus stipatus rcducc-

relur in

arcem, ut ad ostium ventum

est,

versus ad satellites hilari placidoquc

vultu, Plurimam, inquit, optimi viri, vobis babco gratiam ))ro officio,

quo

me euntcm

et

redeuntem deduxistis.

Dixisses homiiicm ex Lilari suavique rc-

dire convivio, adco

et color crat jticuiidior, ct ipse toto corporis gostu, quatenus

APPENDIX.
]jcr

317
se furebat, ut
neoiiiii

gravitatein licuit, Ixtitiam quaiidara

prx

non

essct

pcrspicuum, sarictissimum virum, ecu j.im portui vicinum, toto pectore ad


illara

bcatam (ranquillitatem aspirate.

Ncc

din dilata

est

mors.

Ad decimum
furris coUera,

Cal. Julii producfus in

planicieni, quani Angli

vulgo dicunt

vultu non solum conslanti,

verum

uliara alacri, paucis alloquutus est


est.

populum.
prolixa

Primum

regi

regnoque bene precatus

Mox

ardcnti magis
:

quam

precatione seipsum Dei misericordiae commendavit

simuJque procurabens ia

genua, gracili

et

exliausta ccrvice securim excepit.

Ntquc enim apud Anglos


truncum ad
id

carnifices gladio cervicem inciduut, sed


inclinaiiti, securi

damnato

in

apparatum
iioc

caput amputant.

Quaiito

cum

animi dolore viderint

sjjectaculiun quibus religio pietasque cordi est, et qui Ciirisli spiritura

in pas-

tore operantem expcrti fucrant, facile quivis ex scse potcrit aestimare.

Cxte-

rum quod
qui
si

mitiore poena affectus est,

quam minabatur judicum


tic

sententia, sunt

in

causa fuisse putent, quod nietucrint,

scncx ct exhausto corpusculo,


fuisset,

per viam tarn longam rlicda Iralieavc tractus

sponte cxpirareU

Ego

suspicor,
Jerritus

ob hoc mortis genus atrocius denuntiatum, ut iumianitate supplicii


JVec desunt qui praedicant, ob hoc ipsum accetertius

mufaret scntentiani.

leratam mortem,

quod Romanus pontifex Paulus

episcopura Koflcusera

ob

iiisignem doctrinam ac pirtatem in cardinaliilm ordincm allegissct.literis

Ex ami-

corum

cognovi, in Germania inferiore sparsum rumorcin, quura cpiscopi

Koffenhis caput csset in pontc Londoniensi de

more exposilum, non solum non

cmarcuisse,

verum ctiam magis

effloruisse,
:

vivoque factum similius, ut multi


in

crederent fore, ut etiam loqui inci[)cret

quod

quibusdam niartyribus
est

facatin-

tum legimtR.
qne abditum.
gentcs excitat.
letur,

iJa res, seu fama,

quum

vulgo increbuisset, sublatuni


icvi

Populus enim credulus txpe

quupiam occasione turbas

At

veriti

ne idem cvcnirct
est,

in oapitc IMori,

pnusquam exponcUsee aliaque


penes alios
acta
sit

aqua

fervenli

decoctum

quo plus habcret

horroris.
:

multa his similia pcxscribuntur e Flaiidria


fides.

liritannis viciriiore

Utinam hue

jjervu'nissent

acta Hoffensis,

qucniadmodum

Mori

pcrvenerunl.

E\ Mori

responsis facile liquet, ilium ikstmasse mori citius,

quam
ante

sua; seutentix canere

palinodiam.

Quo animo

videntur omucs fuisse qui

Morum

cxtincti sunt.

Morum

ac Rofiensem ct ilhid movit, opinor, quod qui bene natos, laute

cducatos, in honore babitos, in carecre dednct, non dat vitam, sed longiorem

SIS-

APPENDIX.
Ego
si

ct

accrbiorcm mortem.
illi

regi ftiisscm in consilio, pro

mca

stultitia

cona-

tus fuisscm

pcrsuadcrc, ut pro sua solita cIcmciUia cx(crisquc virtutibiis, per


o;ratio!>um et amabile,

quas nomcii ipsius linctcnus erat apud omncs nationos


iliis

ab

Oritannise luminibus, (otiqiic orbi notis abstiiicrd, aut ccrte pa?na mi(iore

coiileiitus cssi-t.

Rursus,

si

qui pcrieruiit

me

adiiibuissciit in

consilium, sua-

sisscm, nc se irruenti procella; paiain opponerent.


si

Violenta res ira regum, cui

incommode

resistas,

graviorcs cxcitat lumultus.


scd popysmate Icniuntur.
vel

Equi

feroces,

quemadmo-

dum

ct tonitrua, iion vi

t nautse non pugnant ad-

versus impotentem temjx'statcm, sed

quictc vcl obliquis cursibus utentes

expectant coilum commodius.


possis eniendare.

Multis rebus medetur tempus, quas nulla vi


fluctuant, sed quoties incidit

Res

humans semper quidem

insignis aut fatalis

rerum mutatio, midti pcriclitantur qui non cedunt turbini.

Veluti

quum

Julius Caesar aperiret januam tyrannidi, et triumviri junctis copiis


viri

imperiurn orbis occiiparent, laudatissimi qniquc


I't

jierierunt,

quorum

erat
si

JVI.

TuUius.

Qui monarchis

serviunl,

iis

quxdam

dissimulanda sunt, ut

jion

qneant obtinere quod judicaverunt optimum,

saltern aliqua

ex parte mo-

derentur principum aflectus.

Dixerit aliquis, pro veritate


Si

mortem oppeten-

dam.

At non pro quavis


:

veritate.

tyrannusjubeat, aut abjura Christum,

aut pone cervicem


fas est tc

ponenda

cervix.

Sed aliud

est

silere,

aliud abjurarc.

Si

dissimularc chiistianum cifra grave scandalum, raulto magis

licuisset

hie esse taciturn.

.Sed ineple

facio,

qui de rebus tam arduis disputem, qui

nunquam

inter-

fucrim monarcbarum consiliis.


Illud satis constat, eos viros
si

Itaque de tola causa judicium

aliis relinquo.

quid

eccarint, nulla in

regem malevolentia
sibi jicnitus per-

pcccasse, sed simplici sinccraquc conscientia ernisse.

Hoc

suascrant, hoc mcduUis intixum habebnnt, sanctum, pium, regi honoriticum,


ren-no salutare esse
fectarit

quod tuebantur.
alteri asserere

Arguinonto
sit,

est,

quod

nullus illorum afsit

regnum, aut

conatus

nee

uUam

molitus

seditionem,

aut ullas conlraxcrit copias,

ac nc vcrbum quidem
si licuiss< t,

excidit

odium conspira-

tionemve rcsipiens.

Silen-

cupiebant

sed jiatienter ac placide mor-

tem exceperunt,

nihil aliud

cibus etiam criminlbus


scientia,

quam regi regnoque bene prtcantes. At in atromagnam cuipx partem excusat simplex ac pura conTurn apud

animusque non Ledendi, sed bene raerendi cupidus.

efleras etiam nationcs frequenter cximix virtuti prxstantiquc doctrinae honos

APPENDIX.
est habitus.

Sl

Plafoni

apud

Aci^inelas juxta civKatis conslitutioncm capite plec-

tendo, profuit philosoplii cognomen.

Diogenes impune penetravit

in castra

Philippi regis

Macedonum, ad quein pro

expioratorc adductus, libera exproconjiceret in peri-

bravit regi insaniam,

quod non contentus suo regno, semet

culum ne perderet omnia.


missus
est,

Non impune
nisi

tanfura, scd cliam

non ob aliud

quod

esset

philosophus.

cum muncrc diQucmadmodum raoiilis

narcharum

in eruditos benignitas

pluritnum honcsti nomiiiis


illis.

conciiiat, i(a

durius tractati plurimum invidiae eonflant


scriptis inclaruerunt

De

liis

pra^cipue loquor, qui


videtur

apud omnes

nationes, et

quorum memoria

apnd

postcros futura gratiosa.


ferro peremit
?

Quis nunc non execralur Antonium, qui Ciceroneni


?

Quis non detcstatur Ncronem, qui Scnecam occiderit

Ncc
re-

minimum
iegarit.

gratis decessit Oclavii Cajsaris nomirii,

quod Ovidium ad Getas

Uxc nequaquam
quod
etiamsi

eo milii dicuntur, ut regera cliristianum

cum

impiis prin-

cipibus confcram, aut de negotio cujus circumstantias non novi pronuntiem,

periculum abcsset, temcrariuin

csset

sed

ut

ostendam quibus

rationibns fuerim conaturus persuadere, ut rex parceudo viris pietatis et eruditionis

commendationejam
Plausibilis

immortalitati cotisecratis, suo


est

quoque nomini con:

suleret.
fort

semper

praepotentum dementia

sed turn clarissimos

applausus, qiioties viris illustribus ac dc rrpublica bene meritis impeudifur.

Omne

solum

forti

patria est: et exilium fortibus ac pfaclaris viris ssepe cessit


est.

feiiciter.

Mortis invidia gravis

Quum

rex Galiiarum
regis

Ludovicus Xlf,
filia,

regnum adcptus
fallor,

pararet divortium
res displicuit

cum Lodovici

XJ,

Maria, ni

nomine,

quibusdam bonis; ex quibus Johannes Slandocli,


nisi

et

hujus discipulus Thomas, in concione nihil aliud dixerant,


esse ut regi inspirarct
spectaiit
:

Deum

oran-

dum

boniim
lii

coiisiliutn.

Qnx apud populum

dicuntur,

ad seditionem
nihil aliud

et

deliqucrant advcrsus regis cdictum.


jussit,

Rex tamen
:

quam

vertere

solum

nee qiiicquam aderait faculta(um


eos.
irric

at
ille

idem negotio quod agcbat confccto, revocabat


et

moderatione rex

suo consuiuit

institute, et

gravem invidiam

cvilavit,

quod uterque

csset

theologus, uterqu&saiictilatis opinione commcndatus.

At Thomac Mori mortem dcplorant


versabatur;
tantus
erat

et ii, quorum institufo pro viribus adhominis in cranes candor, lauta comitas, tanlaquc

3^0.
beiiignilas.

.\PPi:\DlX.

Qumi
Jam

illc

\\\

mc(li<>criler eni.Iiluin
iidii

ab

se

diiuiait
?

iiulonaliim

."

Ant

qiiis fiiit

alicnus, ilc q<io

stiiduoiit

bcno lUTcri
;

MaUI n.m
ille in

tUvcnt

nisi siiis, Cialli Giillis,

G "rmaiii

Gerni;jtiis, .Sco(i Scolis

at

Ilibcrnos,

\n Cicrmanos, in CJiUos, in Soytlias cl (ados


bniiijiiitas sic

aiuico fuil aiiimo.

li.ec naliirx

IMoriim dinniuin

aiiirais ijcnitiis iiifixif, lit iioii Iq'sc vidi

sfcus ac paiviitcm
iicc vidcraiit

nut fratrcm plorcnt cxtincliini.

inuUoriim lacryinuK, qui


:

Moriim, nee ullo


iiolcnli

oflicio

ab co

fucratit alll-cli
prosiliuiit.

ac mllii qiioquc tlinn lixc sciibo,


afl'cctura cro'liiiius

ac rcpiignarili iacrynia;
ciii

Quamodo nunc
iuit aaiicilia,

Eiasmii.n nostrum,

cum Moro
Cb.sc

(:im .arcia

ut prorsus, jiixtu

I'jthagoram, in diiobus e:idem


no bonus
illo

vidcri'tiir aiiiina?
si

lAjiiidciu iiiiscre mcliia,

sencx suo Moro commoruitur,

lamcii udliuc in vivis est.


lioii

Sunt
sed

qui nos consolantur boc argumciito, quod dicuiil,

dcplorandos

esse,

gratiilauibim potius
love doloris Ion imen

lis,
:

qui

tali

mortc vitam /inicrunt.

Est istud, fateor, noa

at

ego i\lorum optarim intolumcm,


taniilia?

diosorum

gratiu,

fiiin

vcro pi.tcipiie
:

causa,

quum omnium stuquam ct numerosam et


libero-

plane philosopliicam rcliquit

(Ilium natu miniuiurn

jam maritum ac

rum parentcm,
rcm
fidelcm,

filias (res,

et lias

nuptas ac libcroruni matres, cruditas omnes,


institutas,

ac sub paterna disciplina ad chrLstianain pbilosopliiam pulclirc

uxo-

ac jam anum, ex qua lamen nullam prolem

sustulit.

ITas

omncs

cum

spoMsis, nepolibus ac nrptibus in unis a'dibusakbaf, tanta rcligionc, lau-

(aq'.ie

concordia, quan(am uou (cmcre repcrias in collegiis monacboruni ac vir-

ginum.

Hie

niibi cogita,

vir op(ime, qui luc(us, quae lacrymae, qui gcmi(us,

qui dolorcs totam ilLam (limiliam confidant.


ilia

Quot

egregias animas vulneravit

securis, quae Mori caput amputavit

mulli demirantes rogant, quid tanli


?

sccleris

commiserit vir semper habitus innoceiitissimis moribus


nisi

Quibus vix

liabco

quod pro comperto respondeam,

quod

parliin conjicere licet ex arli-

culis "Moro objectis et ill ius rcsponsionc, partira ex

amicorum

Uteris

ac fama

vulgata discere datur.

Rex, ut omnibus notissimum


regina Caroli Cxsaris matcrlcra,

est,

aliquot annis moliebatur

rcpudium cum
cvasura, ultro
ejus negotii
religiosae,

Morus prxsagicns quo

res cssct

deposuit canccliarii

munus,

alia

quxdain causatus, ne cogeretur

exequutor

esse,

quod apnd

sese

non probabat. Erat enim mentis tam


Sic cogitabat
;

ut propior esset superstitioni quara impietati.


quiescere
:

privato licebit
fore, ut cogcrc-

canccUario, qui os est regis, non licebit.

Videbat

APPENDIX.
tur multos coiidemnare morte, quos judicabat oplimos
:

321
ad hxc exitum
tanti

ncgotii incertuni esse, ob ccclesiasticoruin poteiitiam ac gentis ilUus solitam in

reges ferociam.

Tale

si

quid natum

fuisset,

prima victima
asset tarn

fuisset cancellarius.

At me

si

Morus

in consilium adhibuisset,

quum

anxie religiosa con-

scieiitia,
test,

dehortatus fuissem

eum ne

susciperet dignitatem.

Vix cnim
magnis

fieri

po-

ut qui in arduis principiim functionibus versantur, in

pariter ac

parvis jiistitiam ad

unguem

observent.
fastigio

Proinde milii gratulantibus quod talem

haberem amicum ia tanto rcrum


prius
illi

coUocatum, respondete

soleo,

de ejus dignitatis accessione gratulaturum quam juberet

me non ipse. Jam


quod

turn enim nescio quid sinistri praesagiebat animus.

Nee regem

arbitror latuisse,
:

quam ob
Homerus

causiim
indicat,

Morus dcponeret magistratum, itcunque dissimulavit


monarchis
esse

proprium, offcnsionem in aaimo tegere, donee

multo post tempore detur ulciscendi opportuuitas.

Interim rex minis ac fulminibus Clementis VII factus

irritatior,

adjecit ani-

mum
quum

ad vetus

illius

regionis

excmplum,

ut

regnum a jure

pontificis

Romani

assereret, et utriusque status


senfiret,

suprcmam potestatem

sibi viiidicaret.

Caiterum

plurimorum aninios ab hoc


est

instituto abhorere,

ue qua coorirc-

tur seditio,
pontificis

promulgatum

edictum, ut quicuiiqiie non abjuraret

Romani

autoritatem, aut improbaret


est

novum matrimonium,
nisi

capitalis tssef.

Verum hoc edictum non


custodiam.
Roll'ensis

promulgatum,

Roifcnse ct

Moro jam

ductis in

semper plurimum

tribuit sedi iiomauae, et ail versus re-

pudium

libris

etiam conscriptis pugnarat, sed turn


scripsit nihil, sid

quum adhuc
et

integrum

esset

consulere.

Morus

pro oHicio quod gcrebat, conabatur

regis

animum
tutam,

in earn inflectere sentcntiam,

quam

putabat

Deo gratam,

et regi

et

regno salutarem.

Erat

illi

magna

familiarifas

cum

episcopo Roffense

turn praediuni

quod ha-

bebat Morus non procul abtrat a Richemonda.

Ibi regio palatio vicina sunt


esl,

duo monasteria vehementer opulcnta,

ct

quod majus

bona: disciphnie, al-

terum Cartusianorum, alterum Brigittensiura.


citatum Mori animum, ut
ecclesiai

Ab

his facile credidcrim solli:

causam

tueretur

at

ipsum aliquid

efFutisse

quod rebellionem

saperet, nuiiqiiam

sum

credilurus, ut qui ex crebris colloquiis

perspexerim admirabilcm quaudam hominis cautionem.

Ecquidcm vix alium

Vol.

I.

322

APPENDIX.
comperj, qui fam racduUitus amarit priiicipem suum, aut
vcllcf,

Anglum

magU

ex

animo bene

qtiam

iUc.

Unde
vir

igitur Lie

tumultus? Violenta res


Forte

est, conscicntia
fcfcllit

magis mctucns

Deum
Maluit

offciKlcre,
si ille

quiuu mortem oppetcre.

eum

pcrsuasio.

At demiror

levibus argumentis adductus

e^t,

ut sic

obfirmaret
si

animum.

ipse perpeli,

quam
id,

in alios facere,
et

quod

necesse fuisset,

in suscepto

munerc

perse verassct.

Quin

rcgins

veteris, singulari pietate foemince

multos miseret,
in

non lantum ob
ledacta
Icri est,

quod dudum tanta dignitate


frui possit
:

florens,

nunc

eum

statum
ncc
al-

ut

ob divortium nee eo

quicum lam diu

vixit,

nubere ob Clemenlis sentcntiam

verum ctiam

quotl vidct, non

dubium

quin

cum summo animi

dolore, ipsius causa tales viros trucidari.

IIuJus porro

tragocdiai quis sit futurus exitus,

Deus

novit.

Jllud in confesso est, per

necem

beali

Tbomx

Acrensis,

plurimum

ct auctoritatis et

opum

accessisse statui cccle-

siastico

apud Anglos.

Qui

res

mortalium suo imperscrutabili consilio mo-

deratur, pro sua bonitatc dignabitur brcc

omnia

vcrtere in

snam gloriam.

Tantum
si

e scheda,

rumoribus

et

amicorum

Uteris,

hacfcnus licuit cognoscerc


fac vicissim ut per te sciaretincto,

comperliora fuero nactus,


agat rex Sion

tibi

coramunicabo.

Tu

mus quid

cum

suis prophclis,

populoquc

dc quibus

hie mira Ibruntur, an vera nescio.


susti

Apud

Lutetiam Parisiorum X. Cal. Au-

Ann. m.u.xxxv.

::

APPENDIX.

323

CLARORUM ET DOCTORUM VIRORUM VARIA EPIGRAMMATA IN LAUDEM THOMiE MORI.

MORI VIRTUTES DESCRIPT^ PER


Est
Sunt
virtutis

T.

STAPLETONUM.
est

amans, cui nulla scieatia cordi

Uteris clari,

quos virtus nan tamea ornat

Est qui ulrumque tenet, tractare at publica nescit

Munera
Sed

sunt haec qui

feliciter

omnia possunt.

quibus infauste res tota domestica currit

Invenias alium, cui sint

hxc omnia,

at

idem
:

est

Moribus insuavb,

severus, durus, agrestis

Hie

sectatur opes, alius conquirit honores,

Et maculat multas hoc uno crimine Et qui


haec cuncta tenet, vitio
latet,

laudes:

quoque purus ab omni,

Sed moriens

atque obscura morte quiescit.


pietate secundus,

Unus

erat

Morus, nuUi (1)


literis

Ingenio, (2)

clarus

qui (3) munera gessit

Maxima
(6)

qui (4) contemtor opum, (5) contemtor honorum,


et proles rara virtute

Familiam

gubemat.

(7) Candidus (8) Martyrio

et suavis, regi
illustris

populoque jucundus.

concludit cuncta beatus.

Virtutum

I'uit

haec encjclopaedia Mori.

VARIA EJUS ERUDITIO PER EUNDEM.


:

Vis scire in

literis,

quis, et quid esset


?

Thomas

ille

Morus, decus suorum

Tt2

324
Orator

APPENDIX.
fuit clogans, discrtus
:

Festi/iis fuit ct pocta suavLs.

Non Gra;cum
Nee
callct

sccus ac Latiiia callens.


;

moJo

sed tuetur

ilia,

Liiigiiartim liaud sccus advocatus accr,

Quam

legum lucrat Bntaiinicarum.

Scribendae historix arlifex pcritus.

Res gests

satis

hoc docent Ricliardi


feri

Aiiglorum gravis et

tjranni.

Quantus

philoboplius, doccre possunt

Leges Utopia? rcccns rcpcrlx. In


sacris lilcris,

patrumque

libris

Quid Morus
Quos contra
Scribcndo
(Sunt

valuit,

probant labores,

hercticos
:

domi forisque
libris

tulit

hos

Latinis

testes

Pomeranus

et

Lutherus)

lllos vernaculis pie rct'ulans.

Ingens e quibus edidit volumen,


Anglis fructiferum
;

clegans volumen.

Nee

vult dogmatibus vocare solis


pietas, salusque mentis

Sed per quos

Augmentnm

capiat, dedit libellos


libellos,

Angli quos avide legunt

Nee quicquam

utilius legi fatcntur.

Qui pro dogmatibus legenda


Dat pro dogmatibus caput
Ilic

scripsit

securi.
:

major calamus, liberquc major

Ilunc, liunc postcritas librum revolvat.

NOMINIS AITIOAoriA
More, nee

PER EUNDEM.

es ISIaurus,

quod vox sonat Anglica


attica, ftt^fUy habef.

IVIori,

Nee

fatuus,

quod vox

Scilicet infausti eorrexil


lit

nominis omen

vigor et candor

maximus

in:nii.

APPENDIX.

325

DE REGE HENRICO
Cur bonus
in

VIII,

ROFFENSI ET MORO
Henn'ce, juventa,

EJUSDEM.

prima

florens,

Impius

in (enebris

uisima fata trahis?

Nempe
Prsefuit

quia extinxti duo luuxima lumiaa regni:

Roffeusis Phoebus, Cynthia


ille

Morus

erat.

sacris

terrennis prsefuit iste.

Extinctis pereunt sacra, profana simul.

JANI VITALIS, ITALI.

Dum
Imo

Morus immeritx
flent

submittit colla securi,

Et
ait,

occasum pignora cara suuiu

infandi vitam deflete tyranni

Non

moritur, facinus qui grave morte fugit.

JOHANNIS SECUNDI, HAGIENSIS.


Quis jacet hie truncus Quae natat in
?

cujus caput ense recisum est

tetro

sanguine canicies

Hie

est ille

Thomas Morus.

Sic facta rependunt

Tristia raulta bonis, et

bona multa malis.


?

Qu3e circumsistunt divx lugubre cadaver

Diva tenax

veri
fuit

sancta fides

Nemesis.
mortis

Quarum prima

causa et

fuit altera
erit.

Ultrix iojustse tertia caedis

ALIUD, EJUSDEM.
State viri.

Forte hos cineres novisse juvabit.


colla resectus

Hunc tumulum Morus


Ille

habet

decus regni

quondam

et

nunc dedeeus AngU,


sustulerit
"[

Quod

tulerat talem,

quod modo

3?G
llli lit

APPENDIX.
salva foret pictas,
lit

pridcm aula

rclicla est.
est.

Salvo
Fide

perdcret vila relicta

modo

Thoma.

Quantam
tiiis

noUcs, vindicta paraliir.


inferix.

Rcgalcsquc

manibus

ALIUD, EJUSDEM.
Ad
Styga

cum Mori

venisset flebilis

umbra,

Pallidulum largo sparsa cruore caput


Portilor ingemuit, (rux Cerberus ora reprcssit,
Pcrseplioric falsis

immaduit lacrymis.
damuarat adulter,

Et, quern rex

letlio iiifami

Absolvit St^gii judicis urna rcum.

Ilium rex Ercbi, pro constanti probitatc,

Addidit

infernis judicibus
;

socium

Ca:dis ut authorem

fuerit

cum

morfe peremptus,

Addicat

diris suppliciis
infestet

meritum.

Virentem intcrea

lorva

umbra tyrannum
coUa colubris,

Semper,

et

ante oculos sanguinolenta volet.


sparsis per

Et vos Eumcnides

Illius ultrices tcndite in ora faces.

EJUSDEM SECUNDI NiENIA,

IN

MORTEM THOMiE
Morum

MORI.

Extinctum flemus crudeli funere

Et regem immanem, veneremque cruore madcntcm,


Fortunaeque vices,
ct laesae pellicis iram.

Vos mihi

pierides feralia carraina

mus

Dictate, et

mecum vatcm
;

lugete peremtum,

Insignem cythara

qui vos persxpe solebat

Vertice ab Aonio molli deducere versu.

Tuque adeo mihi,

Calliope, quse regia facta,


perita cs,

Et casus raiseronim hominum cantare

Nee

coedcs exhorrescis

memorare

cruentas.

APPENDIX.
Dextera ades,

327

Tu

vero crato, tu blanda Tlialia,

Trimcatnm

inlerea tuimilo

componite corpus,

Exequias celebrate, aspcrgite floribus urnam,

Et tumulo
Sacrum

castos aspiret laurus odores,

laurigeri vatis

complexa sepulcbrum,

Te quoque

deflerem divuni venerandc sacerdos,


populi, qui dura subisti
:

Roffensis praesiil

Fata prior, sancta pro reUigione tu,enda


Sed vatem canimus vates
;

tua

maxima

liicta

Vulgabunt

alii, et

praeclara

volumina condent,

Attolientque tuura super aurea sidera nomen.

Tempus

erat,

mundi cum jam adventante

ruina,

Occideret senio justum, et labefacfa deorum


Relligio caderet, tot sustentata per annos.

Mortalesque fidem tota de mente fugassent

At

dolus, et fastus, curaque impietate libidoet livor edax, fulvi et sitis auri,

Ambitioque,
Grassantes

late,

qua

sol subllmis

utrumque

Aspicit oceanum, geminas quaquc aspicit arctosj

Miscebantque profana

sacris, et sacra profanis.

Turn

furiae

ex imis erebi emersere

tenebris,
cristas,

Sanguineas capitum quatientes undiquc

Armatx
Fatorum

facibus, phlegetonteoque veneno.

Nee mora,

coeruleos subito pctiere Britannos,

gnarae,

tempus namque adfore norant,

Cum

rex Hcnricus despreto conjugis usu.

In vetitos rueret thalamos famosus adulter,

Atque

alias taedas, alios celebrans

Hymcnxos,

Mentis inops, regni indotatam

in parte locaret,
:

Vilem animam,

et nullo

majorum sfemmate fulfam

At regina

prior, tbalamis ejecta maritis,


;

Ingratura in lachr mis et luctu duceret sevum


Ilia

quidem magni de sanguine Ferdinandi,

32S

APPIiNDIX.
Primus qui Alauros rcgnis cxcgit
avitis,

Quo nuiiquam
Ni sua Mundi

Hcspcria rrgnasset major in era,

progenies majori nuniine, Caesar,


sccptru teiiens, titulos superasset avorum.

At postquam dirx subierunt regia


Eumenides, tremuit
Ilorruit,
(alius, sic

tccta

conscius jelher

Occanus

paler, et circumflua

Tethys

Imis delitucre vadis.

Rex

ipse,

maritus

Jam
lUx

novus, inprimis et adhuc coniplexibus hscrens,


facti poeuas,

Exfimuit
aut<

iramquc deorum.

ut videre novos celebrari

Hymcnacos,

Gaudebant

pariter Dirac, pariterque dolebaat


ipsis.

Criminc gaudebant, sed non authoribus

Patratura doluere nefas, niniiumque potcntem

Et vencrem,

et

voluc

is (ela

indignaiitur Amoris.

Ergo

aliud meditanlur opus,

dirumquc frementcs,

Pellicis insinuant

atrum

in praecordia virus,

Et

stolido rcgi eripiunt

raentemque animumque.

Ele scelus firmare

suum majoribus

ausis

Enitens, scelcri scelus adjicil, et conlemptis


Pontificis

summi

monitis, (quibus
in

ille

jubebat,

Ejiceret

moecham, (iuilamique

jura vocaret

Legitimam uxorem,
Ipse
sibi

solitoque ornaret honore)

jus pontificis,

nomenque sacratum,
et

Quara

late sua

regna patent, usurpat,

omnem

Sacrilegus veterem convellit relligionem

Et gravius peccat, ut non peccassc puletur.

Egregia interea pcllex


In

qux gaudia

sentit ?
.'

quorum jugulos miserum non armat amautem


si
;

Prsecipue,

quos probitas suspecta,

et houcsti

Prodit amor

More

inlelix, sic te

tua virtus

APPENDIX.
Perdidit
?

335
nostri.

Bvi scelus

atquc infaraia

Tu

regui decus, et regi carissimus

idem

Consultor fueras, nee judex aequior alter

Jura dabat, qua pensant hcu mcrcede laborem


Fata
tibi
?

poteras illxsaiti ducere vitam,


esse probus.

Sed minus
Coaditio

Vi(x

quam dura

rclf-fa

fait insonti ? si

vera professiis,
:

Fatalena exciperet cana cervice securim

Sin vitam falsa vellet ratione tueri,

Applaudens

stupris,

infandxque ambitioni,

Pollueret morcsque suos, vitamque priorcm,

Otfen&araque hominis, mutaret numinis

in;.

Ille

autem justique (enax,

cultorqiie
et

deorum,

Sponte sua ferro caput obtulit,

procumbens

Purpureum

sacro fudit de pcctore rivum.

Fortunate sencx animi,

tibl regia cojli

Tota patct,

tibi rex

supeium

victricia serta

Porrigit ipse raanu,

magno applaudente
omnes

senatu

Coelicolum,

et volucres

reciimnt poeana ministri.

Omnes

intonsi, niveis in vest ibus

Quales ad vitreum mceandri flunien olores


Mille volant, plauduntque
alis,

el

dulce cancnles

Ca3ruleum

nitidis prartexunt aitbera pennis.

Quis

tibi turn sensus,


?

mcestissima Margarelta,
fletu

Nata

patris miseri
!

quanto tua lumina

Unclabanl

quanfos, eheu, de p<'ctore anhclo


flebile patris
?

Ducebas gemitus, corpus cum

Exaniniuni aspiceres indigna csdc peremti

Nam
Non

te credibile
tibi

efit,

quanquam

patris inclyla facta

jT:U'rnam

conciliant

femamqne decnsque,
illo,

potuisse oculos compesccre tempore in

Vol.

I.

11

330
Quill

APPENDIX.
durum
Acres

casum, patrisque cruorein

Ablueres lacrymis, et circunifusa cadaver

Osculu pallidulo

ferres

moribunda

paieiiti.

Tu (amen
Nee

has aufcr tenero de pectorc curas,

lacrymis corriimpc tuos, pulclicrriin;i, vultus.

Sic tc Plicebus amet, sic, 6 doctissima virgo,

Adjiciat iiumcro te Calliopcia sororum.

Interea truncutn jacet et sine

nomine corpus,

Spectaculum populo dirum

at polluta cruore

Canicics, ne quid sceleris restaret inausuni,

Ncu

tantos xtas ncscirct sera furores,


:

Pra?(ixa infanii spectanda exponitur Iiasta

Deformata tameu primum ferventibus undis,


Duceret informcs donee cutis aspera rugas,

Labraque

in horrendos tralierentur luridu rictus

Nc, quod Roflensi

acciderat, sufl'usa ruborc


:

Mortua vilaiem

prceferrent ora calorem

Turbarentque pium rursus miracula vulgus.

Hocne
?

tuse veneri, rex

6 inceste, tropxum

Erigis

et

mollem placari sanguine divam


?

Posse pufas

iras in te convertet

acerbas

Ipsa Venus, vindexque tuos subvertet amores

Atque

aliis iteruni,

atque

aliis

tua pectora flammis

Uret, ut infamis veniant

tibi tietlia vilae.

Tunc,

raeraor indignx caedis, tua noxia facta

Flebis, et invisa

sumcs de

pcllice poenas.

Peliseus juvcnis furiisagitatus, et ira

Incandens, multoquc

animum infiammatus

iaccho,

Dilectum ante alios inter convivia Ciitum


Transfodit ferro, et resparsit sanguine mensas
:

At postquam furor

ille

animi discussus,

et oranis

Consumptus

vini vapor est,

mcutemque

rcccpit,

APPENDIX.
Ipse

33J

manus

inferre sibi,

sociumque per umbras

Vellc sequi, et miseros incassuin fundere qucstus.

Trcsque adeo moeslus

soles,

totidem quoqiie nocles

Exegit lacrymans, luctu confiisus acerbo

Ne quicquam

ncque criim lucfu revocanfur acerbo

Pullentes aniraae, quns per vada laiiguida vexit

PortUor, atqiie avido trajectos tradidit orco.

Tu quoque dilectum frus(ra plorabis amicum, Cum tibi discusso mens pura redibit amorc.
Iiitcrca boirifica

rurapet tua somnia forma

Umbra viri, muKoque caput foedata cruore^ Quo te cunque feres dira occursabit imago,
Supplicium
ssevis

exposcens horrida

faclis.

Namque
j\Iorus

tuis

donee regnis exutus,

et exul,

Extrcmam implorabis opcm rcrum omnium egenus,


inuUus
erit.

Nulla

est violentia

longa

indictaeque

moram

poena graviore rependunt


effugerit ulius-

Numina,

justitiara

quorum baud

At nos sternum tua


Insolabiliter deflebimus
;

tristia

funera, More,^

6 bone vates,

Tu mortem
Crudelem.

sancta pro relligione subisti

Tibi divinos pro talibus ausis


(ibi

Mortales debent cuitus,

templa,

(ibi aras.

yEternnm, venerande senex, salvcque, valeque,

Seu

colis El^-sium, seu coeli lucida


et

templa

Accipe

bunc nostrum non dura

fronte laborcm.

JACOBI EXERICHI, HISPANL


Henricus

Morum
ille

gladio jugulavit iniquo


vita,

Tam dignum
Mortuus
Post

quam

fuit ipse nece.

tamen vivet per secula cuncta,


virtus vivcrc sola facif.

mortem

Uu

332

APPENDIX.

JACOBI LATOMI, BELG-S:.


Quid

tibi

cum Moro,
?

<ali

irulignissima cive
dict-rc iiiepta

Anglia

quid pergis

tuum

Tu

ferro insontem, iiec simplicc inorte,

Catonem

Persequeris

tuto nee licet esse

pium.

Proinde

sile.

Nam

quo maculam

tibi deraeret istara,

Ipse sibi patriam condidit Utopiam.

GENTIANI HERVETI, AURELIANENSIS.


Quod capiti quondam Ciceronis rostra fuerc, Hoc est pons capiti, More diserte, tuo.
Oucentes Angli suspiria pcctore dicunt
Doctior et melior nullus in
orljc fuit.

JO.

VULTEI, RHEMENSIS. EX LIB.


Hie

II.

EPIGRAMMATUM.

situs est

Thomas Morus,

tuus, Anglia, vatcs>

Turba Poetarum quern

cecidisse gemit.
enses,

Dum

regum docte metuendos aduionet

ilium caruificis rex jubet ense mori.


Ilium amor et cbaritcs
dcfleiit,

dcflentque

Camoenx

Nee damnum
Italia, et

credit, qui sapit, esse leve.


;

Gallia quid possit, testisque Britannia

testis

semper Grscia

testis erit.

MAXIMILIAN: WIGNACURTII, ATREBATIS.


Quae
fuit integritas,

qux

vis,

qux copia

fandi,

Quae mens,

JNlore, tibi, sat

tua scripta docent.

^ui

Cbristi fuerit transAxum pectus amore,

Tradita tcstantur sat tua

membra necu

APPENDIX,
Scilicet ut rairis vixisti dofibus auctus,

333

Te
Vita

decuit miro pectore, More, mori.


;

tibi fucrat feiix

feiicior at

mors,
peperit.
:

^tcrno vitam munere quae

Ordo

tuus per

te

micat uno lumine

sed sunt

Instar

multorum luraina multa virum.

lOANNIS WHITE, EPISC. VINTONIENSIS, IN DIACOSIO MAHs TYRION.


Quin etiam
partes vulgato codice nostras

Propugnat scripfor maximus Utopix.


Fcssus ad authoris melius te scripta remitto

Rarus in orbe
lUius similes,

liber

nee tamea Utopiae


meliores
;

est.

imo multo

Invenies libros, lector

at Utopis.

Et Mori

similes,

imo multo meliores

Scriptores vidcas, lector; at Utopiae.

ALANI
Quis vivente
velit

COPI, LONDINENSIS.

Thoma non

vivere

Moro
?

Quis Moro

nolit sic moxiente

mori

ALIUD, EJUSDEM.
Mortuus an Morus, qui
Vixerat, ut mors
sit

sic in

mortis agone
?

victa coacta mori

Imo

piis

morum

meritis

nunc

vivit et orbi.

t pura mentis

relligione

Deo.

JOANNIS FOULERI, BRISTOLIENSIS, IN MORI EFFIGIEM.


EfEgiem quamcunque
tui sic

fingimus

at

non

Tam

facile est

mores

fingcrc,

More,

tuos.

331

APPENDIX.
Quam
vcllem pictor milii tain pcrfcctus adcsset,

Pingere qui vcrc posset utramqiic simul.

Turn quoqiic qui


Ille

vilain totam mori-squc rcferrct,


foret.

magis inulto doctus Appellc

'

f-ii:-

HENRICI HOLLANDI, VIGORNIENSIS.


Ergo quid
ad nostros
siculi venere tyranni
?

^<.

An

terris nostris

Africa monstra dedit

Nam

furit Lie

Gotthus,

dum Symmaclius

afque Joannes

Aniiltiint

carum

luortc fureiitc caput

Dum jacct
Sjevit

Albinus,

dumque

urbc Hoetius alma

Expulsus Ticini

tristia fata
?

gemit

Alexander Magnus
?

Clitumquc

fidcloin
?

Enecat

et

vitam Parmcnionis bahet

An Nero
Hoc

sanguineus nostris dominatur in


tibi

oris,

At que

vitam, Senncca docle, rapit?

facit Ilcnricus

quod tunc Nero pcssimus

cgif,

Dum Dum

te,

More, nccat,

dum

tua colla sccat.


;

Senneca niorte perit, quia vult

Nero

tu

qnoque More,

vult Hcnricus, spicula mortis habes.


fuit,
te,

Arbitrium pro lege

quod Senneca
More, perire

luxit
facit.

Arbitrium, quod

Ut non

est

mirum,

si sic

Nero

tollat

amicum,
;

Qui matrem
Qui

fato sustulit ante


si

suam

Sic non est mirum,


Icrus in
est,

rex te. More, nccarct,


saeviit

matrem
aliis si

ante suam.

Non mirum

vipera sxva nocerct,

Cum

propria malri vipera sreva nocet.

Ilenrici mater sancta est cccle&ia Christi,

Hanc

prius

afllixit,

quam

tibi.

More, nocet.

Et quia communem

nolles

pessundare matrem,

Fata sub innniti rcgc cruenta subis.

Quod genus hoc

monstri

cur

sic rex barbare, frendis

An, quia vult matri parccre, Morus

obit

APPENDIX.
Non
licet iiigenuis nalis

335
r

dcfcndcre raatrcm
violare lidem
:

Aa
Scilicet

scelus est

veram non

Henrico placuit proportio prava


parcit

Non
Et

membro,
non

dum
illc

premit

illc

caput.

Qui graviora

patrat,

minora

tinicbit,
facit.
:

scelus audaces

ad mala plura

Culpa

trahit

culpam

comitatur abyssus abjssum

Poena

est peccati

pessima culpa sequens.

Cum
Cum
Cum

rex legitimse fecit divortia sponsse,


et

Venit
rex

ad thalamos Anna Bolena suos

Volssum rerum de cardine movit,


;

Fecit et afflicta sorte perire virum

rex schisma

novum deformi

crimine
;

fecit,

Sedis apostolicse debita jura negans

Cum
Cum

rex pontificem prsescripsit,

usque papalc,
;

Non

passus libros

nomen habere papx

rex in sacris voluit caput esse supreraum,

Assumsitque

sibi pontificale

decus

Cum

rex lege nova sacratas diruit sedes,


Solvit et c claustris quos pia vota ligant

Cum
Cum Cum

rex divorum spolians opulenta sepulcbra,


;

Lusit imaginibus, diva Maria, tuis

rex damnavit clerum de crimine falso,


Presbyteros mulctans pontificesque suos
;

rex

omne malum

fecit

tunc, More, necaris

Horrebas oculis tanta videre mala.


Virtus sic
Si

Moro

placuit,

quod

vivere nollct.

non

virtuti vivere posse detur.

Dum

pietas floret, floret

quoque Morus

at ilia

Quam primum
Rex plus
in sumniis

coepit spreta jacere, jacet.

bunc pro

pictate locavit,

Impius afflictum pro

pietate necat.

Moro
Vita

vita fides.

Nam dum
: :

manet

ilia,

manebat,

Stante fide stabat


sibi pietas

qua percunte

perit.

pictate cadcute cadebat,

33G

APPENDIX.
Quam
pius
est

Morus pro

pietate codens

O rex (lebucras insiijni


llara avis est

parcere IMoro,
sic

Moms

super aslra volans.


regebaiit,
regujit.

O rex

si

niultos

homines tua sceptra

At mnltos Moros non tua sceptra


Millibus e muitis vis

Morus

ccrtiitiir

unus,

Tarn ductus, prudens, tani bouus atque pius.

Quanta

labc

tuum regnum popuiuniquc

notasti,

Quum
Quis

ferit

insoatcm barbara pla<;a Moruia ^

tibi jjeisuasit tarn

clarum

tollere fidus,
i

Qiix mens, qux

ratio, consiliiunquc luit

Qua; tua

relligio parili sic jure

nccare
?

Igne Lulheranos, Catliolicosquc cruce

Hoc

liber ille

tuus promiserat ante Lconi

?
?

Hoc

tituhis,

regno quern dedit

ille

tuo

Defenilisiie tiiicm veros

tolkndo

(itleles ?
?

Cubtodem legum legibus

ipse necas
?

Justitianine colis justos feriendo securi

Judiciumne
Consilium curas,

facis judicis

ora premens

et consiliarius iste,

Maximiis absque uUo criraine morte


Incidis ncrvos, ut corpus
fortius csset
?

perit ?

Exlinguis lumen, clarius ut videas

Ut

sit

perfectuni,

scititlis

de corpore membrura
?
?

Evulsis oculis cernere f'rontem cupis

Ecquis arare

solct

(erram non usus aratro


s<d

Aut

sulcare fcrura,
ista facis,

sine nave, fVetum ?

Et tamen

dun

Morum

funcre toUis,

Quem

nidlus sana tollere mente Telit.

Scd frustra aspeias tenebras offunderc Moro.

Morus ubique

volat docia per ora virum.


:

Fortior Henrico Staplelonus


Ilia

penna securi

mori

fecit

vivere

penna facit

APPENDIX.

'S37

ALIUD, EJUSDENf.
Quseiis, Arislidcs cur pulsus

ab urbe fugatur

Altera non causa

est,

quam

quia Justus erat.


?

Qusris, cur Socrates truculenta venenii bibebat


Id
fiiit

in causa, vir fuit

illc

bonus.
cxul
?

Qujcris, cur

magnus
ille

fuit ille IJueiius

Nempe quod
Qujeris, cur

bonus, veriloquusqire
?

fuit.

Morus

submittit coUa securi


est
:

In promtu ratio

optimus

ille fuit.

ALIUD, EJUSDEM.
Quando tuam mortem
recolo, celeberrime
ille

More,

Tunc
Ille fori

venit in

mentem TuUius

meam.

lumen, facundo clarus ab ore


fori

Tuque
Ille

lumen, tuque disertus

eras.
;

pator patriae, patrum dccus atque senatus

Tuque

pater patrise, tuque corona patnim.


fetis

Dum

furit

Antonius,

occiditur

ille

Dum furit Henricus, tu quoque fata subis. Dum cadit ille, sua cum lingua Fulvia ludit Dum cadis ipse, tua morte Bolenacanit. Dum pcrit ille, caput rostris affigitur illis,
In quibus
liic

casus dixerat ante suos

Dum

peris ipse, tui capitis

damnaris in aula,
soles.

In qua pro regno dicere jura

In muUis

ambo

similes, p,;r laus

manet ambos

Dispar at in muitis gloria, dispar honor.


Dicitur ut Cicero Roraanos vincerc scripto,

Moras

sic

Angios puriloquente
sic

stjlo.

Plurima scribebat Cicero,


Plura tamea Mori

plurima Morus,
Ciceronis erunt.

quam

Vol.

I.

S38

APPExXDIX.
In niultis vicit Ciceronem Morus
Vicit subjecto malcriaque Vicit iQ ingenio
: :

in ipso

libri.

quis par in acurainc

Moro ?

Vicit iloctrina, jiidicioque gravi. Vicit honorc loci


;

nam

cancellarius istc

Uiio anni

uniiis consule

major

erat.
:

Vicit in ardenti verae pietatis

amorc

Vicit et in mortis nobilitate suae.

Morus
Morus

erat vates festivo

carmine ludens,
fuif.
:

Insigniquc potens arte poeta


erat jurisprudens, vL\

major in orbe

Piiilosophus

summus,

si

quis in orbe fuif.

Morus

erat custos

Icgum, princepsque scuatus,


consiliique caput.

Supremus judex,

Nee

latuit

Morum

divini pagina verbi,


:

Sic ferit haerelicos

sic legit ille fidem.

Morus

erat

speculum
:

vitse,

fideiquc patronus,
erat.

Insignis

martyr dciiique Morus

Tindallus, Trithns, Barnosius atque Lutherus

A
Non

Mori calamo vulnera magna

ferunt.

sat liabct scriptis tales coiifundcre pestes,

Sed pia confirmant sanguine scripta suo.


Plura quid hie dicara
?

vix haec bene singula dixi,


diserte, tuo.
luisti

Vincor ab ingenio, More

Londinense decus, decus Oxoniense

Urbs

fuit ilia

parens, ista niagistra fuit.


aulas,

Tu

decus Angligenfim, rcgalis tu decus

Tu

decus Europse, tu decus orbis


ingcnii
:

eras.

Tu monstrum
Obruor

miracula sunt tua dicta,

Delicise juvenuni, dclicixque

senum
rerum

ingeiili ni;igiMriini poiiclere

Laus Mori nostro carmine major

erit.

Qui nunor
IJoc
si

est

Moro, non novit pingere

Morum

quis pot^iit, tu Staplctone, facii.

APPENDIX.

339

T.

STAPLETONI EPIGRAMMA AD EFFIGIEM MORITalis erat

Morus quum causas

dixit in urbe

Talis quutn populi jura tuetur, erat.


Talis erat pleno

quum

fecit

verba

s.-natu,
sai.

Orator populi lingua decusqu<>


Talis erat ludens epigraramata,
sei ia

scribens,

Talis
Talis in

quum doctam scriberel Utopiam. liaereticos quum docta volumina format,


sacra defendit dogmata, talis erat.

Dum

Talis erat Gallis et Belgis foedera pangens,

Legati fungcns munere

talis erat.

Talis erat torquatus eques, prudensque senator,

Pertracfans regni scrinia,


Talis erat tibi

talis erat.

quum

factus Lancaslria judex


tui.

Ducatus tenuit jura suprema

Quum

cancellarius Britannica sceptra tencret,

Primo post

rcgera munere, talis erat.

Talis erat Morus,

quum

tctro carcere clausus


tulit.

Dogmate pro

sacro vincula longa

Talis erat dirx submittens coUa sccuri.

At nunc non talem regna beata

vident.

N.

GRUDII EPIGRAMMA.
MORUS LOQUITUR.

iSe lugetc

meo

confusae funere natae

Ipse ego mutari non

mea

fata velim.

Truncum

terra tcget, si rex


tcrris

non abnuat urnam

Et mea jam

noraina nota volant.

Libera mens supcros repetet, ncque serviet unquam,


In partem hanc

quod agat

nulla securis habet.

X x2

340

APPENDIX.
Tu quoquc sjiectalor,
Qui
tibi

tranquillum

si

cupis

xvum
pone

Exigere, ct lelho fur(ior esse tuo,

membm cadant nullo in discrimine Quum sint natural lege caduca sux.

J.

PALUDANI RHETORIS LOVANIENSIS IN INSULA M UTOPIANAM EPIGRAMMA.


Fortes

Roma

dedit, dedit ct iaudata discrtos

Gnecia, frugales inclyta Sparta dedit


Massilla integros dedit, at Gerniania duros.

Comes ac

lepidos Attica terra dedit

Gallia clara pios,

quondam

dedit Africa cautos,


:

IMuniiicos olim terra Britanna dedit

Virtutum ex

aliis

aliarum exempla petuulur

Gentibus,

et

quod huic

dcsit Luic superat.

Una

semel totam

summam

totius houesti

Insula tcrrigenis Utopiana dedit.

GERARD! NOVIOMAGI EPIGRAMMA.


Dulcia, lector, amas
Utile
si
?

sunt

iiic

dulcissima quseque

querisj nil legis utilius.

Sive utrumque voles, utroquc

hxc

insula abundat,

Quo
Hie

linguam cxornes, quo doceas aniraum.

fontes apcrit, recti pravique disertus

Morus, Londini gloria prima

suse.

CORN. GRAPHiEUS

AD LECTOREM.

\ is

nova monstra, novodudum nunc orbc rcperto?Vivendi varia


vis ralioiie

modos

APPENDIX.
Vis qui virtntum fontcs
Principia
? ?

341

vis

imde malorum
in rebus inane latct
?

et

quantum
Morus

Hsec lege, quae vario

dcdit

ille

colore,

Morus, Fiondinae

iiobilitalib

honos.

HEXASTICHON ANEMOLII POETJE LAUREATI, HYTHLOD^I EX SORORE NEPOTIS, IN INSULAM UTOPIANAM.


Utopia
priscis dicta,

ob infrequentiam.
Platonicse,
ilia litteris

Nunc

civitatis

xmula

Fortasse victris,

(nam quod
una

Delineavit, hoc ego

praestiti

Viris et opibus, optimisque legibus)

Eutopia merito sum vocanda nomine.

EJUSDEM TETRASTICHON.

Utopus me dux ex non

insula fecit insulara,

Una

ego terrarura

omnium absque

pbilosophia

Civitatcm philosopliicam express! mortalibus.

Libenter impcrlio mea, non gravatim accipio raeliora.

C.

GOURADI DISTICHON.
araator

Morus amoris amor, morura quoquc Morus

Utopiam

scribens tradidit

Eufopiam.

JO.

LELANDI MORIADES.

Desine facundas nimium laudare discrti

Natas Ilortcnsi maxima

Roma

tui,

Cuiidicla trcs cliaiitcs

nam

iMori cura pcliti

Obfcurant mullis nomina vc&lra modis.

Non
Fed

illis

stiulium Jlilcsia vcllera dcxtra


facili

Carpcrc, non

duccrc

fila

niaiiu

jiiv:U cluquii crcbro

monumcnla Lalini

A'crsarc, ct doclis pingerc vt'rl)a uatis,

Ncc

miiiiLs aiilliorcs

G'rxcos cvolvcrc,

Homcrum
libros
dex'.

Et quem dicendi gloria prima manet.

Ul nee

Aristotclis

dicam quo pcctore

Scruleiitur, so[)liiie m^'stica

dona

Tiirpc viris postbac


Ar(cs, grcx

crit

ignorare Mincrvx
niulicbris amct.

adco quas

EXD OF THE FIRST VOLUME.

^lufideU, Doig,

and Stevtnton, printtrtt

Rd'tuhurgh^

UNIVERSITY OF CALIFORNIA LIHRARY


3

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