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Title: Henrietta Maria
Author: Haynes, Henrietta
Language: English
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Copyright Status: Not copyrighted in the United States. If you live elsewhere check the laws of your country before downloading this ebook. See comments about copyright issues at end of book.

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[Illustration: HENRIETTA MARIA

FROM THE PAINTING BY VAN DYCK AT WINDSOR]



HENRIETTA MARIA

by

HENRIETTA HAYNES

With Twelve Illustrations



New York: G. P. Putnam's Sons
London: Methuen & Co. Ltd.
1912



PREFACE


A bibliography of the sources from which this book has been written would
extend to many pages: much information has been derived from the
collections of MSS. preserved in Paris in the Bibliothèque Nationale, in
the Archives Nationales, and in the Bibliothèque Mazarine; from the
valuable series of Roman Transcripts in the Public Record Office, London;
from the curious and interesting documents in the archives of the See of
Westminster, and from the newspapers and pamphlets which form a branch of
the literature of the Civil War.

I have to express my thanks to His Eminence Cardinal Bourne, who kindly
permitted me to consult the archives of the See of Westminster and to print
three of the documents in the Appendix; to Mr. Edward Armstrong, Provost of
Queen's College, Oxford, and to the Rev. H. Thurston, S.J., who have given
me much help and advice; to the nuns of the Convent of the Visitation,
Harrow-on-the-Hill, who lent me the rare _Vie de la Ven. Mère Louise
Eugénie de la Fontaine_; and, finally, to my friend, Miss H. M. Morris, who
with unwearied kindness read through nearly the entire MS. of the book, and
helped me much by her criticisms and suggestions.



ERRATA


  Page 65, line  7. For "complimentary" read "complementary."
    "  66,   "  24. For "neither of whom" read "who, neither of them."
    "  69,   "  14. For "were" read "was."
    "  72,   "  16. For "new" read "own."
    "  77,   "   7. Omit "to" between "turns" and "a street."
    "  77,   "  32. For "imaginares" read "imaginaires."
    " 110, note  1. For "Anglicans" read "Anglicanus."
    " 138,   "   1. For "Anglians" read "Anglicanus."
    " 155, line 28. For "In" read "For."
    " 155, note  2. For "Corznet" read "Coignet."
    " 155,   "   2. For "Bahn" read "Baker."
    " 227,   "   1. For "Magasin" read "Mazarine."
    " 244,   "   2. For "trois" read  "train."
    " 275,   "   2. For "Lovel" read "Loret."



CONTENTS


  CHAPTER                                      PAGE

        Introduction                             xi

     I. The Daughter of France                    1

    II. The Bride of England                     28

   III. The Queen of the Courtiers               61

    IV. The Queen of the Catholics               92

     V. The Queen's Converts                    130

    VI. The Eve of the War. I                   141

   VII. The Eve of the War. II                  167

  VIII. The Queen and the War. I                193

    IX. The Queen and the War. II               217

     X. The Queen of the Exiles                 252

    XI. The Foundress of Chaillot               276

   XII. The End                                 302

        Appendix                                321

        Index                                   331



LIST OF ILLUSTRATIONS


  HENRIETTA MARIA                                          _Frontispiece._
       From the painting by Van Dyck at Windsor
                          (From a photo by F. Hanfstaengl)

                                                              FACING PAGE

  HENRY IV                                                             18
        From an engraving after the picture by Francis Pourbus

  CARDINAL PIERRE DE BÉRULLE                                           32
        From an engraving

  OLD SOMERSET HOUSE                                                   68
        From an engraving after an ancient painting in Dulwich College

  CHARLES I AND HENRIETTA MARIA                                        90
        From the painting by Van Dyck in the Gallerìa Pitti, Florence
                           (From a photo by G. Brogi)

  THE DUCHESS OF CHEVREUSE                                            146
        After the picture by Moreelse, once in the possession of Charles I

  CARDINAL DE RICHELIEU                                               168
        From a portrait by Phillippe de Champaigne
                            (From a photo by Neurdein)

  THE QUEEN'S DEPARTURE FROM HOLLAND                                  200
        From an engraving

  SIR KENELM DIGBY                                                    232
        From an engraving after the painting by Van Dyck

  HENRY JERMYN, EARL OF ST. ALBANS                                    260
        From an engraving

  HENRIETTA MARIA                                                     278
        From an engraving

  THE RUE ST. ANTOINE, PARIS (SHOWING THE CHAPEL OF THE VISITANDINES) 304
        From an engraving by Ivan Merlen



INTRODUCTION


The woman to whose life and environment the following pages are dedicated
was called upon to play her part in one of the most difficult and
perplexing periods of our history: she lived just on the edge of the modern
world, when the Middle Ages, with their splendid simplicity of
all-embracing ideals, had passed away, and when even the ideals of
nationality and religious freedom which the Renaissance and the Reformation
had brought were becoming modified by the stirring of a new spirit of
liberty. The two countries which Henrietta Maria knew were throughout her
lifetime making their future destiny: the France which cherished her youth
and sheltered her age was becoming the greedy France of Louis XIV, with its
splendid Court, its attempts at territorial growth, its downtrodden,
suffering people; the England of her happy married life was growing in
political self-consciousness and in a stern and repellent godliness which
was to mould the character of the nation, and to educate it to become in
the next century the builder-up of the greatest empire which the world has
ever seen.

Henrietta's life touches both England and France: by race, by education she
was a Frenchwoman; by marriage she was an Englishwoman, and it is on
English history that she has left the impress of her vivid personality; but
the France which she never forgot coloured her thoughts throughout, and
taught her in all probability those maxims of statecraft which she
attempted to apply when the troubles of her life came upon her.

She was the daughter of Henry IV, the great restorer of the French
monarchy, the champion of an unified France, embracing in wide toleration
Catholic and Protestant alike: her youth witnessed the beginning of
Richelieu's continuance of her father's work; under the auspices of the
great Cardinal she was married, and though later her regard for him turned
to hatred, yet the impress which his genius had left upon her mind was not
thereby destroyed.

But her marriage transported her to a very different scene. England, under
the iron heel of the Tudor despotism, had been worn out by no wasting civil
wars; even the Reformation had brought little disturbance, for Henry VIII,
by his amazing force of character, had been able to carry through a
religious revolution almost without the people being aware of it; but the
long peace was teaching men to forget the horrors of war and division. By
the time the crown of the great Elizabeth passed to her Scotch cousin,
Englishmen had ceased to look to the monarchy as the centre of unity. There
was no need of a Henry of Navarre to bind up the wounds of the country. The
old factious nobility had for the most part been slain in the War of the
Roses, and the peaceful generations which followed had allowed of the
growth of a powerful upper and middle class, which, originally fostered by
the Crown as a counterpoise to the decayed feudal nobility, was now
aspiring to a large share in the ruling of the people.

Henrietta wished to see her husband great and powerful, and she could not
appreciate that the day of despotism which in France was beginning, in
England was ending. Charles had not in him the stuff of greatness, but it
is doubtful if even a Henry IV or a Richelieu could have put back the hands
of the clock and realized her ambition. The despotism which was building up
on the other side of the Channel in this country was tottering to its fall
by the development of the intellect and character of the people. Henrietta
clung to the ideals of the past instead of stretching out to meet the
ideals of the future, and so her work failed even as did that of Strafford,
in spite of his greatness.

And this national development was connected with perhaps the most important
aspect of the matter. The Civil War was, more fundamentally than anything
else, a war of religion, another act in the great drama which had been
played in France half a century earlier, and which was still being played
in Germany. Henry VIII and Elizabeth seemed to have saved England from the
common fate of Europe; but it was not so: they only delayed the strife and
gave it a turn unknown elsewhere, adding to the disadvantages of the
champion of tradition this last, that he was a renegade in the eyes of the
party to which by the logic of history he belonged. To many of their
enemies, perhaps to most of them in certain moods, Charles and Henrietta
were not so much the hinderers of political freedom as the supporters of an
alien and blasphemous system of religion. It was the peculiar fortune of
England that it gained liberty by the lever of religion. But for the fear
of Popery it is far from improbable that the nation would not have arisen
to strike down thus violently the despotism of the Tudors. Rather, the
monarchy might have been gradually transformed, and with a very different
and more tardy result, by the character of the people. But Puritan England
could not leave irresponsible power in the hands of a sovereign whose very
Protestantism was not unimpeachable, and thus the victories which were won
by sectarian enthusiasm resulted not in the advancement of a barren
fanaticism, but in the sure laying of the foundations of the liberty of the
people. In France, where, among many differences from England, there was
this great one, that the people and the monarch were substantially agreed
on religious matters, there was discontent, even rebellion, but there was
no revolution, and the people was left for another century and a half to
bear the accumulating load of its misery, until the burden became
unbearable and was cast off with a shock from which Europe still trembles.

Henrietta Maria's life was a failure. She failed to commend either her
person, her religion, or her political ideals, and she brought her husband
a degree of unpopularity which without her he might have escaped. Her
circumstances were hard. She could not help being a Catholic, nor the fact
that under her womanly softness lay the absolutism which was in the Bourbon
blood. Like Charles, she was called upon to weather a storm which she had
not raised, and she had not inherited with her father's temperament and
charm his unrivalled political sagacity. Moreover, she had to win her
private happiness by humouring a despotic and difficult-tempered man, and
she could hardly be expected to recognize that that man, in marrying her,
had made, on public grounds, the greatest mistake of his life. James I,
whose ideas were always too large for his circumstances, had dreamed of
securing England's place in the comity of nations by marrying his son to
the daughter of one of the great Catholic houses. The result was not
increased honour abroad, but hatred at home, such hatred as Henrietta in
her early life was unable even to suspect. Accustomed in her own land to
see Catholic and Protestant dwelling at least outwardly in peace together,
knowing that the Catholic faith was professed at most of the Courts and
among most of the peoples of Europe, she could not appreciate the
insularity of the English mind which saw in every Catholic a political
assassin wearing the colours of the Pope and the King of Spain; nor was she
aware of the historical facts, which if they did not justify, at least
explained this point of view. And as she failed to understand England, so
she failed to understand Europe. The outstanding fact of continental
politics was the long duel which was going on between France and the House
of Austria. France was eventually to be the victor, but it was to be a hard
struggle, and few were sharp-sighted enough to see in the splendid Spain of
Philip IV the signs of a decadence which had already set in. But
Henrietta's blindness was more than a dimness of sight, which she shared
with Cromwell and others of the great ones of her age. It hid from her that
which it was essential to her to know, namely, that this struggle underlay
the whole policy of her native land. Thus she failed to understand the real
causes of the enmity with which Richelieu came to regard her and her
husband, and thus in later days she was unable to grasp the attitude of
Mazarin, or to appreciate why it was impossible that he should give her the
fullness of succour for which she asked.

Had she been a Protestant and a woman of profound sagacity, she might have
saved her husband. As it was, by her reckless defiance of forces whose
strength she was unable to appreciate, she hurried him to his doom. She
lived at a great moment, and she had no greatness to meet it. Herein alone
is her condemnation. She has received more than her fair share of blame,
for she has been made the scapegoat of Charles' faults. The tragedy of her
fate rivals that of Mary Stuart or of Marie Antoinette, but she missed the
historical felicity of a violent death, so that she has failed to touch the
popular imagination. Had she done so, the most charming queen who ever sat
upon the English throne, the daughter of the man whom France still adores,
would have been saved from a verdict at the tribunal of posterity which, if
not altogether unjust, is totally inadequate.



HENRIETTA MARIA



CHAPTER I

THE DAUGHTER OF FRANCE

  In this more than kingly state
  Love himself shall on me wait.
  Fill to me, Love, nay, fill it up;
  And mingled cast into the cup
  Wit and mirth and noble fires,
  Vigorous health and gay desires.

                               ABRAHAM COWLEY


On a May morning in the year of grace 1625, a young girl, watching in the
Château of the Louvre in the city of Paris, was awaiting the greatest event
which had yet come to disturb the tenor of her life; for, before the sun
had set, she, Henrietta Maria of France, would be the betrothed wife of
Charles, King of England.

It was a brilliant match for the little Princess, the youngest child of
Henry IV, King of France, and of his wife Mary de' Medici of the great
Florentine House: she owed it in part to the far-reaching policy of the
father she had never known, and in part to the exertions of her mother and
of a new favourite of that lady, M. de Richelieu. As she was only fifteen
years old[1] she was, perhaps, too young to enter into the political aspect
of the matter, but she was fully alive to the social and ceremonial
advantages to which it would entitle her: a few years before she had gazed
with envy at the honours prepared for her elder sister, Christine, the
bride of Savoy: now she could afford to think of them almost with contempt,
for, to her, the bride of proud England, far more splendid homage was about
to be offered. Nor, though the bridegroom was absent and both betrothal and
wedding would have to be by proxy, was he unknown. Henrietta had seen him
when he was in Paris on the return journey of his romantic expedition to
Spain, and she knew that he was a tall and proper man, handsome in face and
royal in bearing, with a certain melancholy persuasiveness of address which
not even a slight stammer could spoil. "I do not think he need have gone
quite so far as Spain for a bride," she had said then, with the freedom of
her tender years; even now, nearly a year later, she felt such an interest
in her prospective bridegroom, that by the help of an old servant she
borrowed his portrait from one of the English envoys who was accustomed to
wear it round his neck, and, having carried it off to her private
apartments, she gazed at it for the space of an hour, blushing the while at
her own audacity.

Of Henrietta's childhood there is little to record; as one of her
biographers sadly remarks, her troubles began before she could know them,
for she was not a year old when her noble-hearted father perished by the
knife of Ravaillac. Her early years were passed under the care of her
mother, who, though she was solicitous for the child's health and
education, and reared her with the state due to a daughter of France,[2] is
said to have cared much less for her than for her elder sister Christine: a
sister still older, the beautiful and high-minded Elizabeth, left her
native country to become the unhappy wife of Philip IV of Spain, while
Henrietta was still too young a child to retain much personal memory of
her; but touching letters remain written from the desolate grandeur of
Madrid to show how fondly Elizabeth's heart clung to the pretty child she
had left in Paris, for whose portrait she begs, and to whom she sends
little gifts such as some toys for the toilet of her dolls, "so that when
you play you may remember me."[3] The two sisters never met again, and
the Spanish princess who came to France in Elizabeth's stead was a poor
exchange for her, even if Henrietta, who was possessed of a sparkling and
somewhat biting wit, had not been fond of exercising it upon her brother's
demure wife, with whom her mother was never on good terms.

That Henrietta's childhood was, in the main, healthy and happy, cannot be
doubted. In person she resembled her father more than did either of her
sisters, and she had inherited also his gay disposition. Her days were
passed in one beautiful château or another, either the Louvre or the
Luxembourg, or S. Germain-en-Laye, with its beautiful forest and its
terrace overlooking the Seine. Her governess was the kind and faithful
Madame de Montglas, who had tended not only her, but her brothers and
sisters from their earliest years; and if she failed in some degree to win
her mother's heart, with others she was more fortunate. Christine left her
when her years numbered but ten, but so strong was the tie of the common
childhood of the sisters, that they corresponded warmly to the end of their
lives. Her relations with her brothers were very affectionate, and the
King, in particular, cherished her as his favourite sister, probably on
account of her ready wit, a quality which, like many people who are dull
themselves, he greatly admired. Finally, her charms invited a suitor while
she was still almost a child, in the person of the Count of Soissons, a
scion of the royal house, who may well have been as much enamoured of the
dark, sparkling eyes which were the little Princess's chief beauty, as of
her position as a daughter of France.

There is, however, one sentence in an old biography of Henrietta which
shows her youth in another and a sadder aspect. Young as she was at the
time of her marriage, it appears that already she had had to learn the
difficult art of adjusting her conduct to the requirements of Court
factions and family dissensions.[4] Her childhood was cast in the stormy
times which followed the removal of the strong hand of Henry IV. Her
mother, whose lead she followed in the main, was a foolish woman under the
domination of unworthy favourites, until by good fortune she fell in with
Richelieu. It would be impossible to give here even an outline of the
history of the events which in 1617 drove Mary de Medici in disgrace from
her son's Court. It must suffice to point out that until her return in
triumph in 1621 her little daughter had some difficulty in reconciling the
respective claims of her mother and her brother, and in preserving the
favour of both.

It was not long after this return that negotiations for a matrimonial
alliance with England were opened, and thereupon Henrietta became for the
first time a person of political importance. Her mother learned to
appreciate her wit and beauty, and Richelieu, whose reign was just
beginning, looked upon her with interest as a co-operator in his schemes
for the humiliation of the House of Austria and of the French Protestants,
objects which he thought would be considerably furthered by the union of
Henrietta with the heir of England.

In due time two envoys-extraordinary arrived from England to carry out the
negotiations for the marriage. They were both very fine gentlemen, but the
elder, the Earl of Carlisle, who was a Scotchman and an able diplomatist,
on whom most of the real work of the mission fell, was in social matters
quite outshone by his junior, the Lord Kensington, shortly to become Earl
of Holland,[5] who was the handsomest man of his time and accounted so
fascinating that he was the despair of jealous husbands. He was a great
connoisseur in female beauty, and was smiled upon by Madame de Chevreuse,
the most brilliant woman of the French Court; but he was kind enough to
approve of Henrietta, and he sent home to the bridegroom-elect such glowing
accounts of her beauty as roused that rather cold person to a fever of
expectation. She was, he wrote, "the sweetest creature in France. Her
growth is very little short of her age, and her wisdom infinitely beyond
it. I heard her discourse with her mother and the ladies about her with
extraordinary discretion and quickness. She dances (the which I am a
witness of) as well as ever I saw any creature. They say she sings very
sweetly. I am sure she looks so."[6] To the Duke of Buckingham, who at this
time entirely governed Charles' mind, he wrote an equally enthusiastic
account, praising the Princess as a "lovely sweet young creature," who, if
she was not tall in stature, was "perfect in shape."[7]

Marriage negotiations between royal persons are always lengthy, and in this
case there was the additional difficulty of the difference of religion
between the contracting parties, which necessitated a dispensation from the
Pope. But James of England eagerly desired the alliance, seeing in it a
means of winning back the Palatinate for his daughter's husband, a hope
which was encouraged by the diplomacy of Richelieu, who probably also
worked upon the mind of Mary de' Medici, so that, in spite of her bigoted
attachment to the Roman Catholic Church, the whole weight of her now
powerful influence was thrown on the side of the marriage. Father Bérulle,
the founder of the French Oratory, who was a great friend of hers, was sent
to Rome to procure a dispensation from Urban VIII. Arrangements were made
to secure Henrietta's religion and morals in the heretic country to which
she was going, and it was provided that she should have the bringing up of
her children until they reached the age of twelve years. Finally, secret
articles[8] were inserted in the marriage treaty, in which James of England
and his son promised that toleration should be granted to the English
Catholics. Everything seemed settled, and all was rejoicing both in England
and France, except for two malcontents: the Spanish Ambassador in Paris
stood sullenly aloof, "who, without question, doth not well like that
England and France should bee joyned together with such a firme
alliance,"[9] and the Count of Soissons was so angry and disappointed at
the loss of his bride that he refused to treat Lord Kensington with common
courtesy, savagely declaring that the negotiations went so near his heart
that were the Englishman not the ambassador of so great a King, he would
cut his throat.

Henrietta herself was well pleased, and her cheerful countenance reflected
her content. She exchanged a number of quaint and rather formal
love-letters with her future husband, who sometimes employed as his
intermediary a young protégé of Buckingham, by name Walter Montagu, who was
destined to a singular career and to a lifelong friendship with the
Princess, whom he now saw for the first time. In March, 1625, he left Paris
and returned to England carrying the good news that all was forward, and
that the lady should be delivered in thirty days. He was able to supplement
Holland's description of the charms of the Princess, for, like that
nobleman, he was something of a connoisseur in such matters. "I have made
the Prince in love with every hair on Madame's head,"[10] he wrote
cheerfully to Carlisle. So eager was the bridegroom that he would not allow
the match to be stayed for the final settlement of the details of the
dispensation.

But just as everything was ready an event of another character occurred to
retard matters again. On March 27th, 1625, King James died, and the
question arose as to whether the wedding could be celebrated during the
period of mourning. However, as Henrietta could hardly be expected to feel
acutely the death of an unknown father-in-law which made her a queen, and
as Charles' impatience for his bride overcame any scruples with regard to
decorum, it was settled that the great event should take place in the
ensuing May. The decision that the bridegroom should not be present in
person at the ceremony was probably a disappointment to Henrietta. It had
been suggested that he should come over to France, but the proposal had not
met with approval on either side of the Channel, the English thinking it
beneath their King's dignity to seek his bride in a foreign land, and the
French fearing, with good reason, the expense of such a guest. The
selection of a proxy caused some difficulty. Charles wished that his great
friend, the Duke of Buckingham, should impersonate him on this interesting
occasion, but that nobleman, for private reasons which will be explained
below, was not agreeable to the French Court. The choice finally fell upon
the Duke of Chevreuse,[11] who was at once a high-born Frenchman and a
relative of the King of England, being a prince of the House of Lorraine,
and thus connected with Charles' great-grandmother, Mary of Guise. In spite
of his high rank he was a person of sufficient obscurity, and chiefly
remarkable as the husband of his brilliant wife.

The betrothal was solemnized on May 8th, which happened to be the Feast of
the Ascension. The ceremony took place in the Louvre in the King's own
room, which was elaborately fitted up for the occasion, and where, in the
late afternoon, he appeared as (we are told) "a beautiful sun which shines
above all others."[12] Lesser lights were present in the persons of his
wife, his only brother Gaston, Duke of Orleans, and a crowd of noblemen,
all of whom waited impatiently for the bride-elect, who at last appeared,
attended by her mother and by Madame de Chevreuse. Henrietta entered the
room with a dignity worthy of the occasion and of the great race from which
she was sprung. Her magnificent dress, which perhaps a little eclipsed her
girlish beauty, consisted of a robe of cloth of gold and silver thickly
sprinkled with golden fleurs-de-lis and enriched by diamonds and other
precious stones. This wonderful garment was further adorned by a long train
carried by the little Mademoiselle de Bourbon, the Madame de Longueville of
later days, who at this time was so young that she could only nominally
fulfil her office, while the long, heavy folds were really supported by
Madame de Montglas' daughter, Madame S. Georges, who was to accompany the
young Queen to England.

Henrietta's entry was followed by that of the two English Ambassadors and
the proxy bridegroom. Then, after the signing and countersigning of the
articles of marriage, the betrothal ceremony was solemnized according to
the rites of the Church by Cardinal de Rochefoucault, Grand Almoner of the
King of France. In the evening a ball was held in the Louvre, while outside
the firing of cannon and the letting off of fireworks testified to the
public rejoicing.

It was not until three days later, on May 11th, that the actual wedding
took place.[13] The church chosen for the religious ceremony was the
Cathedral of Notre-Dame, which was adorned with hangings of silk and
tapestry and of cloth of gold, to hide as far as possible the lines of the
Gothic architecture which was condemned by the taste of the day. Every
detail of the ceremony[14] was arranged when an unfortunate difficulty
arose which caused much ill-feeling and considerable trouble.

Jean François de Gondi, a member of one of those Italian families which had
found fortune in France in the wake of a foreign Queen, now occupied the
See of Paris. He was the first of the long line of bishops of the capital
to receive the honours of archiepiscopal rank, and, as his character, which
has been sketched for us by his candid nephew, Cardinal de Retz, was at
once feeble and vainglorious, it is probable that his head was a little
turned. His anger, therefore, may be imagined when he discovered that he
was not to officiate at a wedding which took place at his own cathedral,
but was to be set aside for the Cardinal de Rochefoucault. Mingled with
personal pique was the bitter feeling of the infringement of the rights of
the episcopate. He summoned all the prelates who were then in Paris to a
meeting, and they joined with him in presenting a petition on the subject
to the King. But Louis and the Cardinal (who had provided himself with a
brief from the Pope which, however, was not produced) stood firm; and the
upshot of the affair was that the Archbishop, though he was forced to give
way and was much blamed by his clergy for doing so, was nevertheless so
angry that he went off to the country, refusing to have anything to do with
the wedding, and leaving the nuptial mass to be said by his senior
suffragan, the Bishop of Chartres.

But this was not the worst. The absence of the Archbishop might have been
supported with philosophy, but the strike extended not only to the Chapter,
but even to such indispensable people as the singing-men, who, at the last
moment, had to be hurriedly replaced by singers from the King's cabinet and
chapel.

The English alliance was very popular in Paris. It was remembered that if
the bridegroom was King of England and a heretic, he was also a Scotchman
born and the grandson of the much-loved Mary of Scotland, who, it was
said, was doubtless praying in heaven for his conversion. Another side of
the general satisfaction was expressed by poetic references to the union of
the sister of Mars with Neptune, the King of the Waves, which, it was
hoped, would bring about a happy state of things when

                            "toute la Terre
                     Soit aux François et Anglois."[15]

It is not surprising, therefore, that the early hours of the great day saw
the _parvis_ of Notre-Dame crowded with spectators waiting patiently under
the rain of an inclement May morning. The concourse was so great that the
neighbouring streets had to be secured by barriers and patrolled by the
Swiss Guard to make free passage for the coaches of the nobility which were
perpetually arriving at the doors of the cathedral to deposit their loads
of gaily dressed ladies.

Meanwhile, what of the bride for whom all this was prepared? She had spent
the previous day at her mother's favourite convent, that of the Carmelite
nuns whom Bérulle had "fetched out of Spain" to place in a house of the
Faubourg S. Jacques. There her mother's friend, Mother Magdeleine of S.
Joseph, gave her a great deal of advice, seasoned with much piety and some
judgment. Thence she returned to pass the night at the Louvre, and to spend
a quiet morning, until at about two o'clock on the afternoon of her
wedding-day she set out for the Archbishop's palace, which that dignitary,
in spite of his chagrin, had placed at the disposal of the wedding-party.
There in the fine old house overlooking the Seine, which two hundred years
later was to fall a victim to the fury of the Parisian mob,[16] Henrietta
spent several hours in putting on the same magnificent dress which she had
worn at her betrothal, so that five o'clock had already struck when her
brother the King came to fetch her that he might conduct her to the
cathedral.

The procession was drawn up. First came an officer known as the captain of
the gate, behind whom walked a hundred men of the King's Swiss Guard, drums
beating and banners flying. They were followed by the band, which was so
effective that while the hautbois ravished the ears of those who heard
them, the drums would have stirred the most faint-hearted to courage. As to
the trumpets, they made the hearts of the listeners leap for joy within
their bodies.

At last, after heralds, marshals, peers, and dukes, after the proxy
bridegroom and the Ambassadors from England, came the central figure of the
procession, the bride herself, supported by her two brothers, one of whom
was also her King.

The sickly, depressed Louis XIII, notwithstanding his magnificent dress of
_cramoisi_ velvet, so thickly covered with cloth of gold that the
foundation hardly appeared, afforded a sad contrast to the splendid
vitality of his little sister, whose dark curls were adorned by a crown of
gold set with diamonds, and bearing in front an enormous pearl of
inestimable value. The train of her royal mantle, which was of velvet and
cloth of gold, embroidered with fleurs-de-lis, was carried by the
Princesses of Condé and Conti and by the Countess of Soissons, the mother
of the rejected lover, who had asked and obtained leave to absent himself
from the ceremony. So heavy was it that to give the bride greater comfort
an officer walked under it and supported it with his head and hands. Gaston
of Orleans, who was at his sister's left hand, was not allowed to rival his
sovereign in apparel, for a rule had been made that the King, the Duke of
Chevreuse, and the Earls of Carlisle and Holland should be the only
gentlemen to appear in cloth of gold. He had to content himself with silk.
The rear was brought up by the two Queens, the elder plainly dressed in
black, relieved by splendid jewels; the younger magnificent in cloth of
gold and silver. A crowd of highly born ladies followed, among whom may be
mentioned Mademoiselle de Montpensier, the rich heiress whom Gaston of
Orleans was to wed reluctantly a year later, and Madame de Chevreuse, who,
no doubt, cast admiring glances at the handsome face and figure of her
lover, the Earl of Holland.

The wedding ceremony was not to take place in the church but, in accordance
with the old ritual of matrimony, on a platform erected outside the west
door,[17] which was connected with the archiepiscopal palace by a long
wooden gallery upholstered in beautiful tapestry. On this platform, under a
canopy of cloth of gold, Cardinal de Rochefoucault was waiting to receive
the bride, while from the stands which had been put up round the _parvis_,
and from the windows of the tall neighbouring houses, eager heads were
thrust forward to catch a glimpse of the procession as it wound along in
the sunshine which had succeeded the rainy morning. Henrietta, the Duke of
Chevreuse, and the royal party ascended the platform. The short marriage
ceremony was gone through, and immediately on its conclusion an English
gentleman who was present, by name George Goring,[18] set off to carry to
the King of England, as quickly as relays of the swiftest horses would
allow, the tidings of his own marriage.

The new Queen only lingered at the church door to receive the kneeling
homage of the English Ambassadors. Then, accompanied by her mother, her
brothers, and the rest of the wedding-party, she entered the great
church.[19] There awaited her not only the nobility of France, but also
such dignitaries as the provost of the merchants, the aldermen of the city
of Paris, and the rector of the university, while "Messieurs du Parlement"
had, with some difficulty, made good their claim to be present in a body.
All eyes were turned upon the bride as she moved along another richly
decorated gallery, which conducted her to a dais in the chancel from which
she was to hear the nuptial Mass. It was past seven o'clock before the
offertory was reached, an almost unprecedented hour at which to say Mass,
and many may have envied the heretic Ambassadors who were able to retire
for a brief rest, owing to their unwillingness to be present at a popish
service. The only consideration shown for Henrietta was that she was not
required to communicate, as it was thought that to fast until that late
hour and to undergo at the same time so much fatigue and excitement might
prove injurious to her health.

But even when the Mass was over there was no rest to be had. That evening
saw the Archbishop's palace turned into a scene of royal festivity. In the
hall the banquet was spread. At the middle of the table sat the King, with
his mother on his right hand and his sister, the queen of a day, on his
left. The Duke of Chevreuse and the English Ambassadors were privileged to
sit down with the royal party, which was waited on by "our lords the
princes, dukes, peers, and marshals of France," who did not disdain to
bring in the meats for the feast. Outside in the May darkness all Paris was
_en fête_. Bonfires and fireworks were to be seen in every street, so that
it seemed that never had there been such rejoicings as at the marriage of
Princess Henrietta.

It might have been expected that the newly married Queen would have set off
at once for her adopted country, but, on the contrary, there were
considerable delays caused, it was believed, by the Pope's agents, who were
annoyed that the marriage had taken place before the details of the
dispensation had been settled.[20] When these difficulties had been
overcome the King fell ill, and it seems probable that the departure would
have been postponed even longer than was the case had not an event occurred
to hasten it, namely, the arrival in Paris of an unexpected and most
unwelcome guest, George, Duke of Buckingham.

This extraordinary person, whose career reads like a fairy story, was at
this time at the height of his fame. His handsome face and a certain
careless magnificence of manner, which might almost have passed for
magnanimity, were greatly admired, and if he showed at times the insolence
of the parvenu, much was condoned, at least outwardly, in the man who was
the acknowledged favourite of the King of England, and who was able to
appear in almost regal splendour, decked out, it was even said, by the
jewels of England. He was already well known in Paris, and in the few days
he had spent there in 1624, between Madrid and London, he had made an
ineffaceable impression upon at least one heart.

Few royal stories are sadder than that of Anne of Austria, the queen of
Louis XIII. Married as a mere child to an apathetic boy, she neither knew
how to win his love nor how to adapt herself to the requirements of her
position. Neglected by her husband, bullied by her mother-in-law, and later
by Richelieu, she may almost be forgiven for her treasonable correspondence
with the enemies of France. Still less can she be blamed that her heart
clung too fondly to the relatives she had left in Madrid. To the end of her
days she remained a Spaniard, _dévote_ and fanatical beyond the liking of
the lively Parisians; a Spaniard also in her unconquerable coquetry. The
ladies of her mother's Court, shut up in almost monastical seclusion, were
accustomed to amuse themselves during the long hours which intervened
between the various religious exercises by dwelling on and recounting in
every detail their conquests of the men whom they seldom saw except in the
silence of a church or among the crowds of a Court ceremony. Anne, coming
from such a life, was unable to understand at once the greater liberty and
the greater decorum of French manners. She was beautiful, and she was
gifted with a pair of soft, white, exquisitely modelled hands, so that she
was able to command the flattery which she loved. Many a gallant worshipped
at a distance, but none dared to pay her attentions which seriously
compromised her until the English favourite crossed her path.

The true story of the loves of these two is not fully known. It died with
them and with those in whom they confided; but it is probable that during
Buckingham's first visit to Paris something was suspected, and that this
was the real reason of the refusal to receive him as the proxy of the King
of England. When it was known that he had arrived, uninvited, the wrath of
his unwilling hosts was so great that it was only through the intervention
of Madame de Chevreuse, the devoted friend of Queen Anne, and the
representations of the English Ambassadors that he obtained a reception
befitting his rank.

The Duke urged strongly the immediate departure of the bride; and though it
was felt that such a desire for haste was indelicate, yet the French royal
family, with one exception, was so anxious to see the last of him, that
they were fain to comply. Henrietta, probably, was not consulted. She was a
pawn in the political game, and she was still too young to assert herself.

Perhaps she was in no hurry to be gone. She clung to her home and her
country, and the waiting time was made very pleasant by festivities in
which, for the first time, she tasted the pleasures of her queenly rank.
All were splendid; but probably the most magnificent was an entertainment
offered by Richelieu to the three queens during the indisposition of the
King. It took place at the Luxembourg, that monument of the Italian
renaissance within Paris, which was built for Mary de' Medici in her
widowhood to remind her of her own Florentine palace, whose beautiful
gardens, unchanged since her day, remain to witness to the taste of
gardeners before Le Nôtre.[21] On this occasion the spacious rooms were
magnificently decorated. The most skilful musicians which Paris could
furnish had been procured, and the ears of the guests were delighted by
choice music, both vocal and instrumental, while the courtly host employed
all the grace and charm which he had ever at command to fascinate the three
royal ladies, and particularly the young Queen of England, who was inclined
to look upon him with favour as in some sort the author of her marriage.
Finally, at the close of the entertainment all went out into the gardens to
witness a display of fireworks, "the most superb and the most beautiful
invention which had been seen for a long time."[22] The Cardinal, who had
given the fête to mark his satisfaction at the issue of his diplomacy, had
cause to congratulate himself upon its success. As Queen Henrietta said
good-bye to him with grateful cordiality, he bent his keen glance upon her
and saw in her another subservient tool of his ambition, as she saw in him
her protector and her friend. Neither the statesman nor the Queen could
read the secrets of the future, nor know that each would come to regard the
other as an enemy.

At last, when May had passed into June, the day came which witnessed the
Queen of England's departure from Paris. The King, who was still far from
well, determined, nevertheless, to see his sister on her way as far as
Compiègne, and apart from his royal presence she had goodly attendance. It
included the Queen-Mother and her second son Gaston, both of whom intended
to accompany the bride to the coast; the Queen Consort, who, against the
advice of her best friends, could not tear herself from the fascinating
company of Buckingham; the Duke of Chevreuse, and M. de Ville-aux-Clercs,
who were commissioned by the King of France to deliver over his sister to
her royal husband. Finally, Madame de Chevreuse, who had asked and obtained
permission to accompany the bride to her new home for a reason similar to
that which actuated her friend Queen Anne--namely, the love which she bore
to the Earl of Holland.

It was three o'clock in the afternoon when Henrietta left the Louvre to set
out on her journey to England. Her brother, who, perhaps to dazzle the more
homely English, had spared no expense on her trousseau and equipment, had
provided for her personal use a magnificent litter upholstered within and
without in red _cramoisi_ velvet, which was relieved by the gold embroidery
of the cushions and curtains. It was drawn by two fine mules, gorgeous in
their red velvet cloths, and with white aigrettes nodding merrily on their
heads. They were led by a muleteer who was handsomely dressed, and who rode
another richly caparisoned mule. The trappings of the rest of the party
were also splendid in proportion to their rank. A brave escort saw on her
way the daughter of Henry IV. Archers and guards turned out to do her
honour, and by her side rode that great civic dignitary, "M. le prevost des
Marchands." To the sound of martial music went the gay cavalcade, through
the narrow streets of old Paris up to the Porte S. Denys, and so beyond the
wall, which still guarded the city, into the suburbs. Working men and
women, leaving their toil, lined the road, many of whom looking on the fair
child who was leaving them, and having no expectation of seeing her again,
could not restrain their weeping.

[Illustration: FROM AN ENGRAVING AFTER THE PICTURE BY FRANCIS POURBUS]

Half-way to S. Denys the party halted. The provost of the merchants
delivered a weary discourse, "full of matter," and then bidding Henrietta
farewell he turned back to Paris with his escort. The rest pushed on. There
was no time to wait at S. Denys, where the dust of Henrietta's father lay,
and whither her own dead body was to be carried nearly half a century
later. The summer evening was drawing in, and it was thought wiser to go on
to Stains, where a night's rest awaited the bride, who may well have been
fatigued by the toils of this exciting day.

The first considerable town through which the royal party passed was
Amiens. This great city, "the metropolis and key of all Picardy," was
determined, notwithstanding its depressed financial position, to give the
three Queens, no one of whom had ever before been within its walls, a
splendid reception. This resolve was all the more loyal as the
consideration of the King had only indicated a few simple tokens of
respect, such as a reception by the aldermen, as obligatory on the
occasion. It was late in the afternoon before the royal ladies and their
train approached the city, for they were much delayed by the concourse of
people who came out to see them. Not far from the city gates they were met
by the Governor, the Duke of Chaulnes, who brought with him three hundred
horsemen whose steeds, we are told, were of the same race as those sung by
the poets--whose eyes and nostrils emitted flames and fire. Of the
cavaliers each might have been taken for chief and leader, so splendid were
they all. Accompanied by this dashing cavalcade the cortège swept on, to be
met on its way by a troop of archers bearing an ensign with the device of a
cupid, by the youth of the city drawn up in companies, and finally by six
thousand of the mature citizens, whose martial discipline was the
admiration of all. By a wise precaution no salvos were fired until the
royal party was safely passed, for experience had shown that, though only
two or three horses might be frightened, yet they were sufficient to cause
unseemly disturbance.

After the formal greeting had been given to the guests at the gate of the
city by the mayor and aldermen, a ceremony took place specially designed in
compliment to the bride of the island King. Fifty young girls, all pretty
and some very beautiful, dressed up to represent the demi-goddesses of the
sea, came to hail Henrietta as Thetis, queen of the waves, sitting upon the
throne of her litter which had brought her from the banks of the Seine, and
to whom, in token of humble submission, they presented the keys of the
city. So great was the crush to see this sight that the gentleman to whom
we owe the story of the details of the day[23] was unable to get near
enough to hear the speeches of the marine goddesses. The crowds in the
streets were great, and as there were neither archers nor Swiss, as at
Paris, to range the people against the houses and to keep a clear passage,
the confusion was considerable; but it was not allowed to interfere with
the programme drawn up by the loyal people of Amiens. Henrietta saw not
only triumphal arches and columns in abundance, but also curious
allegorical ceremonies in the taste of the times. She beheld Jason, who,
after fighting with fire-breathing bulls, bore off triumphant the golden
fleece, and in whom she was to recognize an impersonation of her husband,
Charles of England. She listened to the hymeneal god, who, attended by
nymphs, stepped forward and, to the accompaniment of sweet music, sang a
wedding-song specially composed for the occasion. The last three verses,
notwithstanding their extravagance of compliment, are so fresh and charming
as to be worthy of the pretty bride to whom they were addressed.

  "Mais que fais je par ces carmes
   Vous arrestant en ces lieux
   C'est que je suis pris aux charmes
   Que vous avez dans les yeux.

  "Allez, j'ay peur que vous-mesme
   Nous emportiez votre coeur;
   Vous portez un diademe
   Soubs un front toujours vainquer.

  "Ne demeurez, ie vieux suyvre
   Mon coeur ne sera rétif,
   C'est glorieusement vivre
   Que d'estre en vos mains captif."[24]

Henrietta looked and smiled and listened. She was new to such honours, and
it was pleasant to be for the moment a greater person than her stern mother
or her stately sister-in-law. But the rejoicings were long-drawn-out, and
she must have been very weary before they culminated in a joyous _Te Deum_
sung in the cathedral, which, like Notre-Dame in Paris, had been disfigured
as much as possible with pictures and hangings. Nor even then were her
toils over. Long and dreary speeches awaited her, to which she had to
listen with some show of interest, before at last she could lie down to
rest.

Henrietta's innocent dreams were perhaps of Jason and the goddesses of the
sea; but there were those about her whose pillows were haunted by visions
of a very different character.

Had all France been searched through it would have been difficult to find a
more undesirable friend and adviser for a young married woman than Marie de
Rohan, once Duchess of Luynes, and now by her second marriage Duchess of
Chevreuse. Beautiful, unscrupulous, and gifted with a remarkable talent for
diplomacy, which enabled her to give effect to her audacious schemes, she
had little difficulty in recommending herself to Henrietta, into whose
young mind she dropped seeds of distrust and of a love of crooked ways
which were to bear fruit in the future. It was not her fault if other seeds
failed to ripen there, and if the purity of the little bride's mind was
proof against the evil example of certain events which occurred during the
few days of the halt at Amiens.

The city had no house large enough to accommodate the three Queens. The
Queen-Mother, as befitted her age and dignity, was lodged in the episcopal
palace, while Henrietta and her sister-in-law had to find apartments
elsewhere. The bride's domicile is not known, but to Queen Anne and her
attendants was allotted a fine house with gardens sloping down to the River
Somme. In these gardens took place a famous scene destined to influence
several lives, and among them that of Henrietta Maria.

Already at a ball given by the Duchess of Chaulnes the animation and
brilliant looks of the Queen of France had been remarked, and ill-natured
people were not lacking who saw in the English duke, who had danced on that
evening with infinite grace, the magician able to rouse her from the
listlessness which usually spoiled her undoubted beauty. Such public
meetings were safe enough, but Buckingham was constantly at the Queen's
lodgings. One evening, in company with Madame de Chevreuse and the Earl of
Holland, he was paying his respects when Anne, who, remembering the soft,
scented nights of her native land, loved to wander abroad after dusk,
invited him to enjoy with her the cool beauty of the June twilight. Their
companions, who were carrying on their own flirtation under the cloak of
another's, followed, but, perhaps intentionally, they lagged behind, so
that the royal lady found herself alone with her bold admirer in a dark,
winding walk. Suddenly the silence of the evening was broken by a shrill
cry. The Queen's equerry, who was in attendance at a discreet distance,
rushed up to find his mistress in a state of trembling agitation, and the
duke so red and confused that he was glad to make his escape as quickly as
possible. There were, of course, explanations and excuses. The matter came
to the ears of the Queen-Mother, who, worn out by her exertions, was lying
seriously ill; she helped to hush up the scandal, and both Anne and
Buckingham seemed, for the moment, to escape easily; but it was felt that
they must part at once, and the duke, with a tact which he sometimes
displayed, began to talk of the King of England's impatience to see his
bride, and to hint that it was not necessary to wait for the Queen-Mother's
recovery.

Henrietta, the sport of others less innocent than herself, knelt to receive
her mother's last blessing. That lady, touched by some real maternal
feeling, bade her a tender farewell, pressing into her hand a letter which
the girl found, when she came to read it, to be full of the most admirable
sentiments of piety and virtue and of excellent advice as to her conduct in
the married state. She probably knew Mary de' Medici too well to attribute
this composition to her, and perhaps no one attempted to disguise the fact
that its author was the pious Father Bérulle who was going with her to
England in the capacity of confessor.[25]

Through Abbeville, with its soaring cathedral, through picturesque
Montreuil, Henrietta came to Boulogne, whence she was to cross to England,
as the plague was reigning at Calais. Though it was June, the weather was
wild and stormy, and a further delay was inevitable. Buckingham, forgetful
of all propriety, careless of the trust confided to him by his friend and
King, took advantage of this delay to steal back, on a frivolous pretext,
to Amiens, and to Anne. His audacity little availed him. After one brief
agitated interview he had to tear himself from his idol, whom he never saw
again.

During the waiting time at Boulogne, Henrietta made acquaintance with some
of her new subjects who had crossed the Channel to meet her, and who were
greatly disappointed when they found her without her mother and
sister-in-law, for, as one of them wrote, they had looked forward to seeing
beauty not only in the future tense, but in the present and the
preterperfect as well.[26] Buckingham, who up till now had been too
occupied with Anne to pay much attention to the bride, and who was too much
of a man of the world to care for the "future tense" of beauty, now, it
seems, bethought him of winning the favour of the Queen of England.
Certainly he secured a flattering reception for his mother, the Countess of
Buckingham, who improved the occasion of her visit to France by reconciling
herself to the Church of Rome. In later days Henrietta did not like the
lady, but at this first introduction she received her "with strange
courtesy and favour."[27] Nor was she alone in her kindness. Gaston of
Orleans, who, in his mother's enforced detention at Amiens, had adhered to
his plan of escorting his sister to the coast, paid the English lady the
unusual compliment of visiting her, and the haughty and high-born Madame de
Chevreuse actually waived her right of precedence in favour of the
Buckinghams, whose family was of yesterday. It need hardly be said that
such courtesy was greatly relished by the English visitors, who found no
drawback to the happy intercourse with their new friends except in the
Countess' ignorance of the French tongue. But even this difficulty was got
over by the presence at Boulogne of Sir Tobie Matthew, who, though the son
of a Protestant archbishop, was a Catholic and a citizen of the world whose
linguistic talents, which were much admired in continental circles, were
joined to a refined culture which rendered him a fitting intermediary
between these distinguished persons. Fortunately all his time was not taken
up by such duties, and he employed his leisure very profitably in writing a
long letter to a lady acquaintance, which contains the fullest account we
possess of Henrietta in her early youth before the cares of married life
had come upon her.

Sir Tobie's ready and subtle pen drew such a sketch of the young Queen as,
interpreted by the future, shows him to have been a keen analyst of
character. Henrietta had grown a good deal during the past year; and though
she was still small, "she sits," he wrote, "upon the very skirts of
womanhood." Her mind and character were as yet undeveloped; but in the
mingled gentleness and wit of her conversation, in the sweet courtesy shown
to her inferiors, in the faithful affection which clung to the mother she
had left, finally, in the courage and enterprise which, to the despair of
her attendants, tempted her to a sea-trip in an open boat with her brother
Gaston, we recognize the woman of later days, as in the girl of fifteen we
see the beautiful queen of Van Dyck's portraits. "Upon my faith," wrote the
worthy knight, giving utterance to a prophecy which unfortunately was not
completely fulfilled, "she is a most sweet, lively nature, and hath a
countenance which opens a window into her heart, where a man may see all
nobleness and goodness; and I dare venture my head (upon the little skill I
have in physiognomy) that she will be extraordinarily beloved by our nation
and deserve to be so, and that the actions of her life which are to be her
owne will be excellent."[28]

At length, after nearly three weeks of waiting, during which Henrietta's
health and spirits flagged a little, the twenty-second day of June dawned
calm and fair, and it was decided that the voyage should be made.
Heretofore the Queen of England had been her brother's guest, but now, on
the eve of embarking, she was delivered over to the care of the Duke of
Buckingham, and the deed of consignation was signed by that nobleman and by
the two French Ambassadors, to witness that the responsibility of the
latter was ended. After the little ceremony the Queen was escorted to the
quay by her brother. She went on board the beautiful ship, _The Prince_,
which her husband had sent for her. The preparations for departure were
quickly made. The moment came when she clung in a last embrace to Gaston.
Then the sails were unfurled, and _The Prince_ rode proudly out of Boulogne
harbour. As Henrietta stood gazing upon the rapidly receding cliffs of
France, did any foreboding of the future come over her, any presage of
coming grief such as weighed upon the heart of her husband's grandmother,
Mary of Scotland, on a similar occasion? Did any shadow of that day nearly
twenty years later, when, a fugitive pursued by unrelenting foes, she would
see again her native land, darken her spirit? We cannot tell. We only know
that she had a moment's _serrement de coeur_, such as any girl might feel
on leaving home, and that she was a little afraid of sea-sickness.

No inconvenience, however, arose. Charles' care had caused his bride's
cabin to be so beautified that she might have imagined herself in her own
Louvre rather than on the sea; and to complete the illusion a choice
concert of delicate instruments and sweet voices was in readiness to amuse
her. Moreover, no precaution was omitted which might ensure the safety of
so precious a freight. _The Prince_ and the vessels which formed her escort
carried the most experienced pilots that could be obtained, whose work was
so well done (though unfortunately it was never paid for) that in
four-and-twenty hours the Channel was crossed. Dover harbour was safely
made, and amidst a throng of interested spectators Henrietta Maria touched
the soil of her new kingdom. It was noticed that immediately on her arrival
the wind rose again with its former violence, and that the sea was again
troubled as if for her alone they had stilled their raging. It was now
evening, and as the Queen, in spite of the pleasures of the little voyage
which seemed to have restored her health and spirits, confessed to great
fatigue, she was allowed to retire at once and to postpone until the next
day the meeting with her husband. M. de Chevreuse and M. de
Ville-aux-Clercs wrote a formal letter to their master, informing him of
his sister's happy arrival, while the King of England awaited, with as much
patience as he could command, the morrow which was to give to his arms the
bride who had tarried so long.

[Footnote 1: She was born on November 25th, 1609 (November 15th, O.S.).]

[Footnote 2: The elaborate ceremonies of her baptism are described in a
pamphlet entitled _Discours sur le baptême de Monsieur frère du Roy et de
la petite Madame_. 1614.]

[Footnote 3: Bib. Nat., Paris. MS. Français, 3818.]

[Footnote 4: After this marriage (of Christine) Her Majesty durst not
follow her mother, to the displeasure of her brother, lest she might hinder
her own, until June 21st, 1620, when the Queen-Mother and her son were
reconciled.

_The Life and Death of that matchless mirror of Magnanimity and Heroick
Vertue, Henrietta Maria de Bourbon_ (1669), p. 5.]

[Footnote 5: He was created Earl of Holland September 15th, 1624.]

[Footnote 6: _Cabala_ (1691), Pt. II, p. 287.]

[Footnote 7: _Ibid._, p. 290. The following descriptions of Henrietta
shortly after her marriage show the impression she made upon Englishmen:
"We have now a most Noble new Queen of England who in true beuty is beyond
the Long-Wood Infanta; for she was of a fading Flaxen-Hair, Big-Lipp'd and
somewhat heavy Ey'd, but this Daughter of France, this youngest Branch of
Bourbon ... is of a more lovely and lasting Complexion, a dark Brown, she
hath Eyes that sparkle like stars and on her Physiognomy she may be said
to be a mirrour of perfection."--J. Howell: _Epistolæ Ho-Eliamæ_ (1645),
sec. IV, p. 30. " ... I went to Whitehall purposlie to see the queene,
which I did fullie all the time shee sate at dinner and perceived her to
bee a most absolute delicate ladie, after I had exactly surveied all the
features of her face, much enlivened by her radiant and sparkling black
eye. Besides her deportment amongst her women was so sweete and humble,
and her speech and lookes to her other servants soe milde and gracious,
as I could not abstaine from divers deep-fetched sighes that she wanted
the knowledge of the true religion."--_D'Ewes' Diary_: printed in
_Bibliotheca Typographica Britannica_ (1790), Vol. VI, p. 33.]

[Footnote 8: These articles were signed at Cambridge in December, 1624; see
MS. Français, 3692: also the _Mémoirs du Comte de Brienne_ (M. de
Ville-aux-Clercs) (Petitot), 1824, p. 389, who was in England at the time
negotiating the matter.]

[Footnote 9: _Continuation of Weekly News_, No. 43, 1624.]

[Footnote 10: Egerton MS., 2596, f. 49.]

[Footnote 11: The procuration of the King of England authorizing the Duke
of Chevreuse to marry the Princess Henrietta in his name is dated April
11th, 1625.]

[Footnote 12: L'Ordre des cérémonies observés au mariage du roy de la
Grande Britagne et de Madame soeur du roy. Paris, 1625.]

[Footnote 13: Many of the details of the marriage, departure from Paris,
etc., are taken from the official account, MS. Français, 23,600.]

[Footnote 14: The ceremonies followed the precedent of those used at the
marriage of Henrietta's father, Henry of Navarre, with Margaret of Valois.]

[Footnote 15: Part of the song with which Henrietta was greeted at Amiens
on her wedding journey. See pp. 20, 21.]

[Footnote 16: Destroyed in February, 1831.]

[Footnote 17: Cf. Chaucer, _Canterbury Tales_: Prologue.

  A good Wif was ther of byside Bath

       *       *       *       *       *

  Sche was a worthy womman al hire lyfe
  Housbondes atte chirche dore hadde sche fyfe.]

[Footnote 18: George Goring, Baron Goring, 1628, Earl of Norwich, 1644; d.
1663.]

[Footnote 19: At some point in the ceremony Henrietta Maria renounced all
her rights to the throne and dominions of France, as had been stipulated in
the marriage treaty.]

[Footnote 20: The dispensation is dated December, 1625.]

[Footnote 21: They are smaller, part of them having been built over.]

[Footnote 22: MS. Français, 23,600.]

[Footnote 23: L'Entrée superbe magnifique faite à la Royne de la grande
Bretagne dans la Ville d'Amiens, le Samedy septisme de Juin, 1625. Sur les
fideles relations d'un seigneur de qualité. A. Paris, MDCXXV.]

[Footnote 24: _Ibid._]

[Footnote 25: On the question of the authorship of this letter see Avenal:
_Lettres de Richelieu_, VIII., p. 27. There seems no doubt that it was
written by Bérulle. Among the Bérulle papers (Archives Nationales, M. 232)
is an authenticated copy, whose note of authentication states that "ce
discours à este composé par nostre très révérend père" (i.e. Bérulle), as
the copyist was informed in 1660. Bérulle in 1627 wrote another letter for
Mary de' Medici to send to her daughter. See chap. IV.]

[Footnote 26: Sir Tobie Matthew. Tanner MS., LXXII.]

[Footnote 27: _Ibid._]

[Footnote 28: Tanner MS., LXXII, 40.]



CHAPTER II

THE BRIDE OF ENGLAND

  Parents lawes must beare no weight
  When they happinesse prevent.
  And our sea is not so streight,
  But it room hath for content.

                             WILLIAM HABINGTON


Long years after the events occurred, when many happy years had softened
the memory of their bitterness, Henrietta Maria confessed to her friend
Madame de Motteville that her early married life had not been free from
disappointment and vexation. Charles Stuart was not an easy man to live
with, as all those who had much to do with him found out. He was moral,
conscientious, in many respects admirable; but he was oppressed by a sense
of his own importance, he was entirely without humour, and he was convinced
that he was always, on all occasions, in the right. He did not, as many
royal husbands, break his marriage vow, but he treated his girl-wife with a
harshness which fell little short of unkindness, and that though she was
ever anxious to do her duty and he was always sincerely a lover.

It is probable that the difficulties began almost immediately. Charles, on
his arrival at Dover, did, indeed, greet his beautiful bride with delight,
and when she would have knelt at his feet he prevented her by clasping her
in his arms instead. But the French visitors soon showed that they were
dissatisfied with the Queen's reception. They were ignorant of the more
homely character of the English people and Court; and, contrasting the
poverty of the festivities and welcome offered by the King of England to
his queen with the splendour which the King of France had freely displayed
to do honour to his sister, they concluded a lack of respect and affection
on the part of Charles which had no foundation in fact. Some of the
difficulty was indeed wholly due to national misunderstanding, as, for
instance, the ill-feeling caused by the gloomy splendours of Dover Castle,
where the young Queen spent her first night in England, and, later, by an
antique bed, dating from the reign of Elizabeth, in which she was invited
to repose in London. How could the English know that these relics of a
glorious past were in the eyes of these visitors, accustomed to the
new-fashioned luxuries of the French Court, nothing but relics of
barbarism? "None of us, however old, could remember ever having seen such a
bed," wrote Tillières,[29] in deep indignation. Nor was the public welcome
to London more successful, though the marriage was fairly popular, and
there was much kindly feeling towards the bride. The plague was raging in
the city, so that, for prudence'sake, festivities had to be curtailed;
while, to make matters worse, the entry into the capital took place on one
of those drenching summer days which are not of infrequent occurrence in
these islands. To the French visitors used to Paris, which, if one of the
dirtiest of cities, was, then as now, one of the most beautiful and
magnificent, London, at the best, would have looked rather shabby,[30] in
these circumstances it appeared ugly and squalid. The English were little
more pleased with their guests. "A poor lot, hardly worth looking at," was
the comment of one Englishman on the brilliant train of French ladies who
accompanied the Queen; and if he made an exception in favour of Madame de
Chevreuse, who could hardly have been called plain, it was only to find
fault with her for painting her face. It was perhaps not to be expected
that this remarkable lady should find favour in Puritan eyes, for during
her stay in England, where she remained over the birth of her daughter, the
Mademoiselle de Chevreuse of later French history, she exhibited more than
her usual eccentricity, indulging in such freaks as swimming across the
Thames, an exploit which was celebrated in half-mocking verse by a Court
poet.[31] But such petty national jealousies were annoyances of a trivial
character. The more serious disagreements which arose between the royal
pair may be traced, almost entirely, to two sources: the influence over the
Queen of her French attendants, and the influence over the King of the Duke
of Buckingham.

Among the articles of the marriage treaty was a stipulation that the
Queen's household should be composed of those who were of her own faith and
nation. This body consisted of more than a hundred persons, civil and
religious, chosen by Mary de' Medici and Richelieu, ranging from such great
nobles and ladies as Madame S. Georges, the principal lady-in-waiting, and
the Count de Tillières, the lord chamberlain, to the humble servants of the
royal kitchen and laundry. Certainly the presence of so many of her own
countrymen about the person of the young Queen tended to prevent that
assimilation of English ideas and habits which was so desirable. It is not
surprising that Charles disliked his wife's French servants as standing
between him and his bride, particularly when it is remembered that they
looked upon themselves as the servants of the King of France, who provided
many of them with pensions.

The object of his special dislike was Madame S. Georges, who, as the
daughter of Madame de Montglas, had great influence with Henrietta, and
who, though she had had long experience in Courts,[32] was foolish enough
to show herself aggrieved at not being permitted to ride in the same coach
with the King of England and his bride. Madame de Tillières, who ranked
next to her, was more discreet in her conduct, probably owing to her
husband's intimate knowledge of England, where he had resided a while as
ambassador.

But if the secular part of the Queen's household was objectionable, still
more so was the ecclesiastical establishment, of which the leading spirits
were her confessor, Father Bérulle, who had brought over with him twelve
fathers of the French Oratory,[33] whose long habit, worn on all occasions,
startled the eyes of sober Londoners, and her Grand Almoner, Daniel de la
Motte du Plessis Houdancourt, who had under him four sub-almoners, one of
whom was said to have openly defended at Court the doctrine of tyrannicide
which Ravaillac put into practice. Bérulle, who lived to wear the
Cardinal's purple, left behind him when he died a few years later the
reputation almost of a saint.[34] He was also a very intellectual man,
being one of the early admirers of the genius of Descartes; but he was not
suited either in mind or character for the position which the partiality of
Mary de' Medici had called him to fill; a man of stern and narrow piety,
neither a Fénelon nor even a Bossuet, he knew not how to deal
sympathetically with those whose religion and manners differed from his
own; and the scorn which, as a Catholic ecclesiastic, he felt for "the
ministers," at whom, in his letters, he loses no opportunity of sneering,
as an abstemious Frenchman he felt no less for the gluttonous English. He
recognized Charles' affection for his bride; but when the artistic King
thought to please her by giving her a beautiful picture of the Nativity,
all that the priest found to say on seeing it was that it was older than
the religion of its donor. His very virtues were unfortunate. Though
practised in Courts, he was too sincere to be a successful diplomat, and he
showed a singular lack of enlightened self-interest, both in the just
reproaches with which he overwhelmed Buckingham on the subject of the
Catholics, and also in the friendship which he extended to Bishop Williams,
whose sun was setting before that of the younger favourite. Nor was he
altogether successful in his dealings with the Queen. He did indeed win
Henrietta's respect, and to his teaching may be attributed, in some degree,
the lifelong conduct which distinguishes her so honourably from others of
her rank and day. But a Catholic Puritan himself--it is significant that
the French Oratory a few years later was believed to be infected with
Jansenism--and looking upon all Courts, specially Protestant ones, as
chosen haunts of the devil, he was wont to rebuke his royal penitent for
such natural sentiments as pleasure in her pretty dresses and jewels, and,
forgetting that she was not a Carmelite nun in the Faubourg S. Jacques, he
attempted to force upon her a strictness of manners and observance suited
neither to her nature nor to her position. Charles' complaints of the cold
and unloving conduct of the wife with whom, even by the testimony of his
enemies, he was deeply in love; Buckingham's gibes at a queen who lived "en
petite Mademoiselle," had their foundation in facts, facts for which
Bérulle was largely responsible.

[Illustration: CARDINAL PIERRE DE BÉRULLE

FROM AN ENGRAVING]

The Bishop of Mende was a very different person from the austere Oratorian.
A member of one of the noblest houses in France, high-spirited, cultured,
and fascinating, he owed a position to which his twenty and odd years would
not have entitled him to the fact that he was a relative and intimate
friend of Richelieu. He knew how to win the affection of the Queen, who on
one occasion warmly recommended him to the Pope,[35] and who, when he left
her to pay a visit of a few weeks to his native land, wrote requesting his
return, as she could not get on without him; but the King frankly detested
him, and years later, when the Bishop was in his grave, remembered angrily
the arrogance with which the latter was wont to enter his wife's private
apartments at any hour that pleased him. That the charges of indiscretion
brought against him by the English were not unfounded may be gathered not
only from the amazing audacity of his proposal to place the crown on the
Queen's head in Westminster Abbey--a proposal which led to her never being
crowned at all[36]--but also from the reluctant admission of his friend
Tillières that he was too young for his post, and from an admonitory letter
addressed to him by his masters in Paris, urging him to moderate his zeal
and to bridle his fiery tongue.

But there were reasons other than personal, of which Charles and his
subjects were certainly in some degree aware, for disliking and distrusting
Henrietta's household.

One of the causes of the extraordinary success of Richelieu's policy is no
doubt to be sought in the accuracy and range of the information at his
command, which was furnished by persons in every country, who, though a
prettier name might be given to them, were, to speak plainly, his spies.
Some of them were French subjects abroad, others were subjects and often
even servants of the King in whose land they lived, who were persuaded by
the powerful argument of a pension to engage in this traffic in news.[37]
By this means the Cardinal found out most things that it was to his
interest to know, and often, while he was professing goodwill and affection
to some hapless wight who was in his power, he was, at the same time,
collecting information to be used against him.

Richelieu's content at the English alliance has already been referred to.
He was, at this time, at the height of his influence over the Queen-Mother,
and he was rapidly building up the power which was to make him the
strongest and most irresponsible minister that France has ever seen.
Judging perhaps from the precedent of Queen Anne of Austria, he believed
that Henrietta would be the instrument of France and consequently of
himself in England. He was determined that she should have those about her
in whom he could feel confidence; in other words, that the choice and
highly born body of men and women who served the person of the Queen of
England should be also the servants of an alien power. They played their
part well. Even Bérulle, who was too good an ecclesiastic not to know the
duties of the married state, summed up, in a letter to a private friend,
the objects of his mission to England as being "to initiate the spirit of
the Queen of England into the dispositions necessary," not only "for her
soul," but also "for this country,"[38] i.e. France. The Bishop of Mende,
by the testimony of Tillières, detailed everything that occurred to
Richelieu, and abundance of letters written by his hand remain to prove the
truth of this statement. As for Tillières himself, his attitude both to
England and France may be gathered from his own Memoirs, and from the
reputation he earned in this island, where he was considered very
"jesuited."

Such being the state of things, it would not perhaps be difficult, without
seeking for further cause, to account for the irritation of a young and
high-spirited King; but there is another factor to be taken into
consideration.

If we are to believe the testimony of those who on the Queen's behalf
watched the course of events, the real author of the King's harshness to
his wife and of his dislike to her servants was his favourite, the Duke of
Buckingham, whose power over his royal master was so unbounded that he had
but to indicate a line of action for Charles to follow it. This, indeed,
was the deliberate opinion of Henrietta, who years later told Madame de
Motteville that the Duke had announced to her his intention of sowing
dissension between her and her husband, and though it is probable, from
letters of Charles which are still extant, that the French underrated his
independent dislike of them, and consequently exaggerated the guilt of the
favourite, yet the substantial truth of the accusation can hardly be
doubted. Buckingham was acute enough to perceive the naturally uxorious
bent of the King's mind, and also the rare gifts and graces of the young
Queen; and as soon as he discovered that it was impossible to make a slave
of the wife as he had of the husband, he began to regard her as an enemy.
He may well have trembled for an influence which was threatened on another
side by the rising indignation of the people, whose voice did not scruple
to point him out as a public enemy, and even to accuse him of the death of
the late King.

But there was another reason, equally in keeping with his haughty
character, which the gossips of the time freely alleged for his persistent
persecution of the Queen of England. Over in Paris the Queen of France,
with Madame de Chevreuse whispering temptation in her ear, was waiting for
the man to whom she owed the brightest hours of her shadowed life. Unless,
in this case, history lies in no ordinary manner, Henrietta's married
happiness was put in jeopardy as much by the soft glances of Anne of
Austria, as by the austerity of Bérulle or by the audacity of the Bishop of
Mende. Was it not for the sake of this fair charmer that Buckingham,
wishing to discredit her enemies, Mary de' Medici and Richelieu, tried to
nullify the political effects of the match they had made? Was it not that
he might return to France and to her that he stirred up strife between two
great Kings? Was it not, finally, to revenge the smarts of his hindered
love for her that he first persecuted and then expelled those who in the
Court of England were living under the protection of that Court which
refused to receive him as ambassador? To all these questions contemporaries
have replied, and their answer comes with no uncertain sound.

Buckingham hated all the French, but his chief enemy was the Bishop of
Mende. This young ecclesiastic possessed a stingingly sarcastic tongue,
which the favourite, who, like most vain people, detested ridicule, both
hated and feared. The former had, besides, a malicious habit of insisting
with the most courtly grace upon long conversations in the French tongue,
by which means the Englishman, who was not a perfect linguist, appeared, to
his infinite chagrin, to disadvantage by the side of his nimble-tongued
adversary. Nor did the Bishop confine himself to words. Secure in the
favour of Richelieu he dared to oppose the Duke when that nobleman induced
the King to appoint his wife, his sister,[39] and his niece _dames du lit_
to the Queen. Henrietta, though she pointed out that already she had three
ladies in place of the two who had served her mother-in-law, yet weary of
opposition, would have given in, and perhaps the French Ambassadors, who
were still in England and to whom the matter was referred, might also have
been won over by the soft speeches of Buckingham. But the watchful Bishop
was not thus to be tricked. He represented so strongly the danger of
placing "Huguenot" ladies near the person of the young Queen, and spoke so
earnestly of the scandal which such a proceeding would occasion among the
Catholics both of England and the Continent, that the favourite's ambitious
intrigues were defeated. He was unused to such checks, and Tillières was
probably right in seeing in this incident the cause of his hatred to the
man who had thus foiled him.

Nevertheless, there was a moment when the Bishop of Mende hoped to win over
the Duke to France and to Henrietta. In August, 1625, the first Parliament
of Charles I met. It was in no amiable mood, for it was known that the King
had lent ships to be used against the Protestants of Rochelle, and the
concessions to the Catholics, though nominally secret, were more than
suspected. Charles found himself embarrassed by a request to put in force
the recusancy laws, while at the same time he was angered by an open attack
upon his favourite. Now, in the opinion of the Bishop, was the moment to
offer to Buckingham the French alliance, and in a long cipher dispatch to
Richelieu he detailed his hopes. Spain had turned against the Duke, the
English detested him. What course was open to him but to fling himself into
the arms of the most Christian King? But Buckingham had other and opposite
views. He believed that his best chance of political salvation lay in
counselling his master to grant the petition of Parliament. Without abiding
principle, careless which religious or political party he favoured so that
it furthered his own ends, he thought only of his personal safety. He had
not overrated his hold on Charles' heart. The King of England, to save his
unworthy favourite, bowed to the storm. He put in force the recusancy laws,
thus breaking the solemn promise which he had made only a few months before
to a brother-sovereign, and inflicting an almost unbearable insult upon his
young wife.

It was little she could do. Earnestly as she strove to do her duty, Charles
was never satisfied with her, and he not only resented unduly the small
errors of taste and tact inevitable in a girl of her age, left without
proper guidance in a land of which she did not even know the language, but
he exposed her to the almost incredible rudeness of Buckingham, to whom he
commented on her conduct[40] and who chided her like a child, and once even
dared to tell her that if she did not behave better her husband would see
order to her. It is not surprising that her temper sometimes failed her.
Once, even in the opinion of Tillières, she spoke unbecomingly about Madame
S. Georges' exclusion from the royal coach; and another time, in a fit of
girlish anger, she marked her displeasure at the reading of Anglican
prayers in the house where she was staying by attempting to drown the voice
of the minister in loud and ostentatious talk with her ladies outside the
room in which he was officiating. Thus her spirit sometimes rose, but in
the main she was quite submissive, answering sadly and meekly the
reproaches of her husband.

But this last insult was no private matter, and, urged by Bérulle and the
Bishop, Henrietta pleaded for her co-religionists. Her prayers were
unavailing, and only served to anger Charles further. "You are rather the
ambassador of your brother the King of France than Queen of England,"[41]
he said coldly, in reply to her entreaties. Even the diplomatic
representations of Tillières only procured a slight delay in the
publication of the Proclamation putting in force the laws against the
recusants.

The wrath of the French on both sides of the Channel knew no bounds. Not
only was the breach of promise an insult to the Crown of France, which was
thus set at naught to "pleasure the views of Parliament," but political
interests were also at stake.[42] In the opinion of Tillières and the
Bishop, what was needed was a vigorous ambassador to teach Charles his
duty, and to cajole or threaten him into keeping his share of the marriage
contract, "for," wrote the Grand Almoner, with his usual candour, to
Ville-aux-clercs, "you know so well the humour of our English that it would
be superfluous to tell you that one can expect nothing from them unless one
acts with force and vigour." Such attributes were never wanting to
Richelieu's government. Ville-aux-clercs, whom the exiles would gladly have
welcomed, "if we were worthy that God should work for us the miracle of
enabling you to be in two places at once,"[43] could not indeed be spared,
but a substitute was found in the person of "M. le Marquis de Blainville,"
who before he left Paris had a long conversation with Bérulle; for that
ecclesiastic, whose position had been of a temporary nature, had now
returned to his native land, leaving to fill his office one of his trusted
Oratorians, Father Sancy, a priest who, during a previous embassy to
Constantinople, had acquired a profound knowledge of the world which it was
supposed would enable him to advise judiciously the Queen of England.

She, meanwhile, worn by chagrin and unkindness, was losing the bloom and
the high spirits she had brought with her from her native land. The
England, which had been represented to her as a paradise, was a poor
exchange for the home she had lost; and when she looked across the Channel
for help, all that came to her was the advice, in conformity with the
intrigues of the Bishop of Mende, to make friends with Buckingham, whose
overbearing rudeness was hateful to her, and on whom it is probable she
never looked with favour, except perhaps at the very beginning of her
married life, when she thought he might help her to revisit, in the midst
of her miseries, her home and her mother. Now she showed herself restive,
and Richelieu, who was much set on the conciliation of the Duke, discussed
her conduct in a note which contains some of the earliest evidence as to
Henrietta's personal character. The Queen of England, he said, was a little
firm in her opinions, and those about her thought that her mother, whose
displeasure she feared, should write a letter to her, pointing out her duty
in this matter. The trouble might have been spared, for Buckingham at the
time seems to have been as little anxious as herself for a friendly
understanding.

Blainville arrived in the late autumn of 1625. He was received with the
courtesy due to his position as Ambassador-Extraordinary--a title which he
had been given at the instance of Richelieu to overawe the King of
England--but from the first he had little hope of accomplishing the objects
of his mission. The Queen, stung by the harshness of her husband, who
sometimes did not speak to her for days, goaded by the insolence of
Buckingham, and surrounded by those who taught her to despise the language,
the manners, and the religion of her adopted country, seemed to be at the
beginning of the unhappy married life which so many princesses have had to
endure. She was, moreover, more melancholy than usual, owing to the recent
departure of Bérulle, which she regretted so deeply that her attendants
were able to count more than twenty sighs as she sat at the table on the
day he left her. The members of her ecclesiastical household were
correspondingly depressed, for the loss of the distinguished Oratorian
exposed them to even worse treatment than they had experienced before. The
Bishop of Mende himself, on whose young shoulders the burden of
responsibility had descended, could not keep up his spirits. He retired to
his room, where he sat alone brooding upon the hard fate which had brought
him to a barbarous and heretical isle, and whence he refused to move except
to perform his religious duties and to wait upon the Queen.

The King of England was hardly in a happier mood. That he had legitimate
cause of complaint cannot be denied, and a letter which about this time he
wrote to Buckingham proves that he had almost made up his mind to the only
real cure for his troubles. The extraordinarily violent tone of this
epistle suggests that his dislike to his wife's foreign attendants required
by this time no fostering from the Duke. It even seems as if the favourite
were less hostile to them than his master.[44]

With such a state of feeling prevailing at Court, Blainville's position was
not a comfortable one; but he remained there until an incident occurred
which is believed to have occasioned his withdrawal and which deserves a
detailed description, as it illustrates admirably the petty persecution to
which the high-spirited Henrietta, the daughter of a hundred kings, was
subjected.[45]

The second Parliament of the reign, whose short existence was to be ended
by the impeachment of Buckingham, met in the early spring of 1626.
Henrietta, who was anxious to see the opening procession, had made
arrangements to witness it from a gallery situated in the Palace at
Whitehall, and she was annoyed when on the very day of the ceremony her
husband told her that he wished her to go to the house of the Countess of
Buckingham, whence a particularly fine view of the proceedings could be
obtained. Still, she was always compliant in trifles, and at this time she
desired to conciliate Charles by prompt obedience in such commands as her
sensitive conscience could approve. She therefore signified her assent
without, however, considering the matter of grave consequence.

It happened that just before the hour of the procession, when Henrietta was
about to set out for the Countess' apartments, a heavy shower of rain came
on. The young Queen, looking out on the unsheltered court which she would
have to cross to reach her goal, shrank back, fearing for her elaborately
dressed hair, which she did not wish to have done again for the evening
festivities. She told her husband, who was with her, that she thought the
weather too bad to go, and asked him to conduct her to the gallery which
had been her first choice. To her great surprise he was much displeased,
and it was only after a somewhat bitter altercation that he complied with
her request, leading her to her place and taking leave of her with cold
politeness.

Henrietta was sitting quietly, overcoming her vexation, when, to her
surprise, the Duke of Buckingham, from whose bold eye and arrogant bearing
she instinctively shrank, appeared. Rude he always was in his dealings with
her, but on this occasion he surpassed himself, telling her roughly that
the King was exceedingly displeased with her, and that it was surprising
that for a little rain she should have refused to obey the commands of her
husband. The proud young French Princess could not brook such language from
one of her own subjects. Haughtily she made answer that in the Court of
France she had been accustomed to see the Queen her mother and the Queen
her sister use their own judgment in such trifles. Nevertheless (and in
this her real sweetness and desire to please appeared), she mastered
herself sufficiently to plead a woman's dread of bad weather, and to
request Blainville, who was at her side, to lead her again to her husband.

Charles was found to be in a less implacable mood than Buckingham had
represented, and Henrietta went off to the Countess' apartments, hoping
that the storm had blown over. She was soon undeceived. The Duke sought her
again at his mother's house, and with unpardonable insolence again assured
her that her husband was very angry with her, and that he did not wish her
to remain in her present quarters. It was too much. Henrietta's wrath
blazed forth. "I have sufficiently shown my obedience," she cried; "but
unhappy me! obedience in England seems to be a crime." Buckingham, who was
bent on making himself disagreeable all round, disregarding the Queen's
protest, now turned to Blainville and remarked in a meaning way that he
believed there were those who from motives of superstition had hindered her
presence at a ceremony of the Knights of the Bath, and that he was
surprised that her friends should be so injudicious. The French Ambassador,
who knew well what was in the Duke's mind, and who had no wish to disclaim
responsibility, replied with spirit that he would rather advise the Queen
of England to absent herself from fifty ceremonies than counsel her to take
part in one which was of doubtful permission for a Catholic. On receiving
this answer the unwelcome visitor withdrew.

Henrietta had a brave spirit, but the conduct of Buckingham had cut her to
the quick, since it humiliated her in sight of the Court. That night, in
the privacy of her own apartments, she appealed to her husband, whose cold
looks and manners informed her that she was not forgiven. She was, she
said, the most unhappy creature in the world, seeing him thus keep up his
anger against her for so long. She would die rather than give him just
cause for offence, and anyhow, whatever his feelings, could he not treat
her in public with more respect, as otherwise it would be thought that he
did not care for her. Pleadingly the young wife looked at her husband, for
even at the worst she had some faith in the goodness and kindness of his
natural character apart from the influence of Buckingham.

But Charles, with a heavy pomposity, which in happier circumstances would
certainly have made Henrietta laugh, replied that he had grave cause of
offence. The Queen had said that it was raining, and that if she went out
in the rain she would soil her dress and disarrange her hair. "I did not
know that such remarks were faults in England," was her sarcastic answer.

The King left his wife's apartments unappeased, and not all her entreaties,
nor those of Madame de Tillières, whom he regarded with less disfavour than
any other Frenchwoman, could induce him to return. He only sent a most
unwelcome emissary, in the person of the Duke of Buckingham, who reiterated
his assurances of the King's wrath, and informed Henrietta that if within
two days she did not ask pardon her husband would treat her as a person
unworthy to be his wife, and would drive away all the French, Madame S.
Georges included, he thoughtfully added, knowing well that that lady held
the first place in his auditor's affections.

Such words no woman of spirit, much less a Princess of one of the greatest
houses of Europe, could tamely suffer; but the young Queen, though in a
white heat of passion, seems to have kept her temper admirably. Calmly and
contemptuously she wondered that the Duke undertook such a commission as he
was fulfilling. As for her position, only one thing could make her unworthy
of it, and that she was too well-born to think of doing. Nor was she to be
frightened by his threat with regard to her servants. They would be
retained, she felt sure, not for love of her, but on account of the pledge
given to her brother the King of France. As for asking pardon, she could
not do so for a fault she had never committed. Her conduct had been open
and public, and all around her had praised rather than blamed her. No, she
added, she would not ask pardon, unless at the express command of the King.
Buckingham, whose loquacity for once found nothing to reply, returned to
the King, who, it appears, must, on reflection, have appreciated in some
degree the sorry part he had played, for no apology was exacted, and the
matter was quietly allowed to drop. As for the poor young Queen, she was so
overcome by chagrin and misery that she kept her bed, where she was visited
by Blainville, who thought to cheer her by lending her some letters which
he had recently received from Father Bérulle.

The Ambassador felt that it was time to be gone. He had borne annoyances,
such as the interception of his letters, and insults, such as the continued
persecution of the Catholics, but this treatment offered to the sister of
his royal master was the last straw. The English, on their side, were only
too glad to get rid of him, for they considered that he meddled unduly in
private matters between the King and Queen. It is even said that he was
forbidden the Court. But still, he was not to depart without a final brush
with the enemy, for on Sunday, February 26th, a number of English Catholics
who, following their usual but quite illegal practice, had come to hear
Mass at the French Ambassador's chapel in Durham House in the Strand, were
unpleasantly surprised as they came out after the service to find waiting
for them at the door the officers of the King. A free fight followed, which
was only stopped by the appearance and authority of the Bishop of Durham.
Blainville, who in his irritated condition was not likely to reflect that
Charles, after all, was within his legal rights, was roused to fury at what
he considered a violation of the majesty of France. "I wish," he said
vindictively, "I wish that my servants had killed the King's officer."

Thus angrily he departed from the country to bear to France the tidings of
his ill-success.

After this matters went from bad to worse. Henrietta tried to please her
husband, but she always found herself in the wrong, as when, for instance,
she attempted to conciliate him by appointing to the offices created by a
grant to her of houses and lands a preponderance of English Protestants.
She found that her submission was entirely thrown away, because,
injudiciously indeed, she had appointed to the office of Controller, which
was only honorary, the Bishop of Mende. She was curtly informed that the
post was required for the Earl of Carlisle, who was particularly odious to
her on account of the indecent zeal which had prompted him within a few
months of signing her marriage contract to urge the persecution of the
Catholics. Goaded by such treatment, she claimed, with some warmth, the
right to appoint her servants, and thus another cause of dispute arose
between her and her husband, whose unkindness even extended to keeping her
so short of money that she was reduced to borrowing from her own
servants.[46]

So the summer of 1626 wore on amid misunderstandings and recriminations
until, in the month of June,[47] an event occurred which probably
precipitated the inevitable crisis.

One afternoon the Queen and her principal attendants, among whom the
courtly figure of her Grand Almoner was conspicuous, were walking in that
which even then was known as Hyde Park. In their walk they turned aside,
and, to the astonishment of those of the public who observed their
movements, were seen directing their steps towards Tyburn, the place of
public execution, which was near the present site of the Marble Arch.
Arrived at this ill-omened spot, the royal lady and her suite fell upon
their knees as upon holy ground, and so, indeed, in their eyes it was, for
was not this spot, wet with the blood of malefactors, watered also by the
blood of those whom a tyrannical and heretical Government had slain for the
crime of confessing the true faith? The airing of the Court had become a
pilgrimage to the unsightly shrine of the English martyrs.

It was an act of amazing imprudence such as would only have suggested
itself to a man who, like the Bishop of Mende, never summoned discretion to
his council but to eject it ignominiously. It is impossible to say how far
the deed was of premeditation, but it is not unlikely that it was arranged
by the Grand Almoner to give a demonstration to Protestants and to
pro-Spanish Catholics of the devotion of a French Princess. It was even
reported that the stern ecclesiastic had required the pilgrims--Henrietta
included--to walk barefoot; but this, no doubt, was a sectarian
exaggeration. Apart from such extravagances, that which had been done was
in the eyes of the King--and not without justice--unpardonable. Not only
had his wife, the Queen of England, been placed in an undignified position
by those who had permitted her to appear among the memorials of misery and
crime, but a direct and most bitter insult had been offered to him, to his
father, and to the great Queen on whose throne he sat. The Catholics who
laid down their lives at Tyburn with a courage which forced the reluctant
admiration even of their enemies, were indeed, from one point of view,
martyrs of the purest type. From another, and that Charles', they were
traitors executed for the crime of treason in the highest degree. "Neither
Queen Elizabeth nor I ever put a man to death for religion," James had said
on one occasion. This doctrine was one which, in its nice distinctions, a
foreigner and a Catholic could hardly be expected to grasp, yet the hard
fact remained that these victims of Tyburn, however innocent, suffered
under the laws of the land and under the authority of the Crown.

Charles was wounded in his most sensitive feelings, and it speaks something
for his forbearance that, as far as is known, he recognized the innocence
of his girl-wife, and reserved his wrath for her advisers, particularly for
the Bishop of Mende. "This action," he is reputed to have said, "can have
no greater invective made against it than the bare relation. Were there
nothing more than this I would presently remove these French from about my
wife."

Their removal was indeed, as Charles had perceived eight months earlier,
the only solution of the difficulty, and to it events were now rapidly
tending. It was necessary to cajole the French Court. Buckingham, even
before the departure of Blainville, had made fresh overtures to Henrietta,
which the astute Ambassador had advised her to reject. After the failure of
this ruse the adroit Walter Montagu was dispatched to Paris to speak fair
words to Mary de' Medici, and so well did he succeed that cordial letters
were interchanged between the Duke and the Queen-Mother, even while, at the
same time, the young diplomatist was able to carry out the more secret task
which had been confided to him, which was nothing less than to discover
whether the state of French domestic politics was such as to make it safe
for the King of England to offer to the King of France so grave an insult
as the expulsion of his sister's household. Montagu's report was
encouraging. Owing to the great favour with which both Queen Anne and
Madame de Chevreuse regarded him, he was able to pick up a good deal of
information which would have escaped an ordinary envoy; he was thus, no
doubt, able to trace in the ramifications of Chalais' plot, which at this
time was agitating the French Court, and in which both the above-named
ladies, as well as Henrietta's younger brother Gaston, were implicated, not
only the general hatred of Richelieu, but even a positive desire on the
part of some to see the Cardinal humiliated by such an affront to his
policy as would be involved in the violation of the Queen of England's
marriage treaty. And with such discontent at home, what vengeance could be
taken? "The cards here," wrote Montagu in great glee, "are all mixed up,
and Monsieur [Gaston of Orleans] is on the point of leaving the Court."

Charles' decision was taken, and when his mind was made up it was not easy
to turn him from his purpose. He knew, also, that he had the feeling of the
Court and the people with him. English insularity could not brook the
permanent presence of a large body of foreigners in so prominent a
position, and English Protestantism took alarm at a royal establishment
avowedly Catholic, which was considered "a rendezvous for Jesuits and
fugitives,"[48] and whose ecclesiastical head was believed to hold special
powers from the Pope, and to be "a most dangerous instrument to work his
ends here."[49] At the Court feeling ran equally high. Buckingham's
intentions and hopes have been sufficiently indicated, and there were
others who, in a measure, shared them. Carlisle, whose anti-Catholic
bitterness had been conspicuous throughout, and who had cynically remarked
that the religious concessions made at the time of the marriage were only a
blind to satisfy the Pope, and that the King of France had never expected
them to be kept, was statesman enough to appreciate the real objections to
the position in which he had helped to place Charles. There were endless
broils at Court between the two nations, particularly among the ladies.
Altogether Charles, taking into consideration the satisfactory disturbances
across the Channel, was well justified, from the point of view of
expediency, in choosing this moment to carry out that which had
become--even setting aside the desires and influence of Buckingham--the
wish of his heart. He was a man of monopolies, and he believed--and
believed with justice--that the French stood between him and his bride.

He laid his plans with skill. Carleton, a diplomatist of great experience,
was sent over to Paris, not only to assist in the stirring up of strife
there, but also to complain of the conduct of the Queen's servants, and, if
possible, to obtain Louis' consent to their dismission. In case of refusal
he was to intimate, with such tact as he could, that they would be
dismissed all the same. The vigilant Bishop of Mende, who probably knew a
good deal of what was going on, himself proposed to hasten to the French
Court, where his influence with Richelieu rendered him so effective, to
represent matters in their true light. He was told, to his great wrath,
that the King of England would not allow him to cross the sea, and he was
exclaiming that such threats were the very way to confirm him in his
purpose, and that he would start the next day, when the Duke of Buckingham
sought him, and the two enemies had their last passage-of-arms.

"Do not run the risk of this journey," said the Duke with elaborate
friendliness. "I am sorry for the bad impression that you have made on the
King. I myself have tried to remove it without effect." "I thank you for
your kindness," replied the Bishop satirically. "It is indeed unfortunate
that your credit, which stands so high with the King in all other matters,
fails in this. But I am not surprised, as I have noticed that it always
falls short in anything which concerns the Queen of England and her
household."

In the end Tillières went to France, though Buckingham, stung by the
Bishop's biting words, really asked the King to grant him leave of absence.
But the Grand Almoner now thought that his place was at his mistress' side,
and he knew that it would be difficult to detain the Count, however much
Buckingham and the rest might desire to do so, as there was an unanswerable
pretext for his journey in the approaching wedding of Gaston of Orleans,
who was to expiate his share in Chalais' plot by marrying Mademoiselle de
Montpensier.

The danger, indeed, drew on apace. A few days after Tillières' departure
Charles announced his intention to his Council, and any lingering
hesitation he may have felt was swept away by the encouragement given by
Buckingham and Carlisle, both of whom spoke in favour of the project. "The
French," said the latter, "are too busy with their own affairs to make war
on such a pretext."

The die was now cast, and it was necessary to inform the Queen. The Council
had been held in the Palace of Whitehall, and the King, with Buckingham at
his heels, had only to go to another part of the house to find his wife,
who was sitting in her own room with two of her ladies. The King rather
rudely desired her to come to his apartments, but she, not altogether
ignorant of the state of affairs, replied coldly that she begged him to say
his pleasure in the place in which they found themselves. "Then send your
women out of the room," said the King. Henrietta complied with his request,
and her heart sank as she saw her husband carefully lock the door behind
them.

Then, without further preface, he curtly announced to his young wife the
sentence of banishment. He could endure her French people and their
meddling no longer, he said. He was going to send them all back to France,
and she would have in their place those who would teach her to behave as
the Queen of England.

Henrietta first of all looked incredulously at her husband, for she had
never believed, protected as she was by her marriage treaty and by the
Crown of France, that, however dissatisfied he might be, he would push
matters to an extremity. Then, as she saw no relenting on his cold,
handsome face, she burst into tears and wept unrestrainedly. It was long
before she found voice to plead that if Madame S. Georges, whom she knew he
disliked, was too obnoxious, yet that she might keep Madame de Tillières,
against whom no complaints had been brought. But Charles was inflexible.
All were to go. More piteous sobbing followed, until the poor girl--she was
only sixteen--appreciated that her misery was making no impression upon her
husband. Then she stayed her weeping to make a final request. Might she not
see her friends once more, to bid them good-bye, for it had been intimated
to her that sentence would take effect without a moment's unnecessary
delay.

No, was the curt reply. She must see her friends no more.[50]

At this final outrage to her wounded feelings Henrietta's spirit--the
spirit of the Bourbons--rose in revolt. Forgetful of her husband, forgetful
of her queenly dignity, remembering only that those whom she loved were
leaving her for ever, she rushed to the window, that thence she might
obtain a farewell glimpse of her banished compatriots. Such was her
eagerness that she broke the intercepting panes of glass. But even this
poor comfort was denied her. The King pursued her and dragged her back with
such ungentle force that her dress was torn, and her hands with which she
clung to the bars of the windows were galled and grazed.

Elsewhere dismay and consternation reigned. Conway, the Secretary of State,
announced their doom to the assembled French ladies, informing them that
the King wished to have his wife to himself, and that he found it
impossible to do so while she had so many of her own countrywomen about
her. They were begged to retire to Somerset House, whence they would be
sent to France. Madame S. Georges, acting as spokeswoman for the rest, said
that they were the servants of the King of France, they could not leave
their royal mistress without the orders of the Bishop of Mende, who was
their superior. That gentleman arriving, in obedience to a hasty summons,
did indeed at first assert with his usual hauteur that neither he nor any
of the household would depart without the commands of their own sovereign.
But he was soon made to understand, by arguments which not even his spirit
could resist, that no choice was left to him. That evening saw the French
at Somerset House and Henrietta desolate at Whitehall. It was probably
during the few days that had to elapse before her friends were deported to
France that the Queen wrote the following note to the Bishop, which vividly
reflects her loneliness and sorrow:--

  "M. DE MANDES,

  "I hide myself as much as I can in order to write to you. I am treated as
  a prisoner, so that I cannot speak to any one, nor have I time to write
  my miseries nor to complain. Only, in the name of God, have pity on a
  poor prisoner in despair, and do something to relieve my sorrow. I am the
  most afflicted creature in the world. Speak to the Queen my mother about
  my miseries, and tell her my troubles. I say good-bye to you and to all
  my poor officers, and I charge my friend S. Georges, the Countess, and
  all my women and girls, that they do not forget me, and I will never
  forget them, and bring some remedy to my sorrow, or I die.... Adieu,
  cruel adieu, which will kill me if God does not have pity on me.

  "[Ask] Father Sancy to pray for me still, and tell Mamie that I shall
  love her always."[51]

Such a letter was not calculated to soothe the excitable Bishop of Mende,
whose spirit had already been roused to fury by hearing the cries and
protestations of the poor young mistress whom he was not permitted to see.
But it was little he could do. His captivity at Somerset House was broken
in upon by the King of England himself, who, with the unfortunate desire
for explanation which was always his, was anxious to point out with his own
mouth to those whom it most concerned the reasons of his action. According
to the Bishop, who occupied his leisure in writing angry letters to the
King of France and the Queen-Mother, Charles acknowledged that he had no
personal fault to find with his wife's servants, but said that it was
necessary, to content his people and for the good of his affairs, that they
should be expelled. This admission, which, if it ever existed outside the
mind of the Bishop, was intended as a courteous softening of unpleasant
truths, did not prevent the King from adding a command (which was obeyed)
that all the French were to be gone within four-and-twenty hours.[52] It
was perhaps some solace to them that before their departure a considerable
sum of money and costly jewels were distributed among them.

It remained to bring Henrietta, who was still weeping angrily in her
apartments, to a state of calm more befitting the Queen of England. Charles
was not cruel, and when the first flush of anger was over he could feel for
his wife's grief. At first he had determined that all the French, whether
lay or ecclesiastic, should go. "The Queen has been left neither confessor
nor doctor, and I believe that her life and her religion are in very grave
peril,"[53] wrote the Bishop. But Charles, though he was not to be moved by
such innuendoes, relented in some degree. In the end one of Henrietta's
ladies, Madame de Vantelet, was permitted to remain with her, and two of
the priests of the Oratory were granted like indulgence; one of whom was
the pious and sagacious Scotchman, Father Robert Philip, who continued the
Queen's confessor until his death, years later, in the days of the
exile.[54]

The French were gone, and on the whole, in spite of the Bishop's protest,
quietly; but Charles and Buckingham knew well that they had to face the
wrath of France for this the audacious violation of the Queen's marriage
treaty. Henrietta naturally looked to her own family to right her wrongs,
and she wrote piteous letters to her brother asking for his help, which
show the sad condition to which sorrow and unkindness had reduced the
bright Princess who had left France little more than a year earlier. "I
have no hope but in you. Have pity on me.... No creature in the world can
be more miserable than I."[55] Mary de' Medici could not turn a deaf ear to
such appeals nor to the complaints of the exiles who were pursued into
France by aspersions on their characters not calculated to soothe their
feelings, such as a charge of taking bribes, which charge their royal
mistress, with characteristic justice and generosity, was at pains, even in
the midst of her misery, to confute.[56] The Queen-Mother's remonstrances
to her son-in-law were, indeed, quite unavailing, but they were dignified
and expressed a surprise at his conduct which probably she did not feel,
since, as the English took care to point out, it was not long since similar
measure had been meted out to the Spanish attendants of Queen Anne. With
her daughter she felt the warmest sympathy. "If your grief could be
assuaged by that which I feel at the news of the expulsion of your servants
and of the ill-treatment to which you are subjected, it would soon be
diminished,"[57] she wrote, and she added, perhaps sincerely, that never
had she felt such grief since the assassination of her husband, Henrietta's
father. As for her son, his indignation was such that he would leave
nothing undone that might procure for his sister redress and contentment.
It is probable that Richelieu, with the Bishop of Mende at his elbow,
shared these sentiments. Nevertheless, Carlisle was right. France had too
much on her hands to pick a quarrel with England, even though her daughter
had been insulted and her authority set at naught. All that could be done
was to send another embassy, and this, it seems, was only decided upon at
the instance of the Pope.

Two persons were joined in the embassy, the Count of Tillières, whom the
English were believed greatly to fear, and his brother-in-law, the Marshal
de Bassompierre, an elderly diplomat of great experience, whose
old-fashioned elegance of manner was already making him a little ridiculous
in the eyes of younger men who despised the Italian grace of the days of
Catherine de' Medici. In the end this exquisite person had to go alone, for
it was intimated that the King of England would not receive his colleague;
he was rather unwilling to undertake the embassy, and his dissatisfaction
was not decreased by the coolness of his reception in London, which
coolness, as he reminded himself, it was clearly a duty to resent as an
insult to the Crown of France.

He found matters in bad case. The King was inflexible in his refusal to
come to terms, and the Queen, though she was still depressed and bitterly
angry with Buckingham, showed herself, since the cession which permitted
her to retain Madame de Vantelet and her old nurse, more reconciled to the
change. About her spiritual welfare the Ambassador expressed himself much
concerned, for she was surrounded by heretics, and in place of the
irreproachable ecclesiastics appointed by her brother she had been forced
to receive two English priests, by name Godfrey and Potter, who belonged to
a school of thought which in his eyes, and in those of the Bishop of Mende,
was little less than heretical, for they had both taken the oath of
allegiance, and they had both assured the Earl of Carlisle that they did
not belong to the Church of Rome, but to that which was Catholic, Gallican,
and "Sorbonique," an assertion which particularly enraged Bassompierre, who
saw in it an insult to the French Church and nation. He was probably little
more moved by the accusation brought against one of them by the Bishop of
bracketing together "the three Impostors, Mahomet, Jesus Christ, and
Moses."[58] Only one person showed any cordiality to the unfortunate
Ambassador. Buckingham, thinking on the Queen of France in Paris, felt that
he had gone too far, and decided that it would be well to conciliate
Henrietta. With this purpose he came secretly, through the darkness of the
night and attended only by his young friend Montagu, to wait on
Bassompierre. He complained bitterly of the hatred of which he was the
victim, and inquired plaintively whether M. de Mende were saying as many
disagreeable things about him on the other side of the Channel as he had
been wont to do in England. To the last question the polite Frenchman must
have found it difficult to frame an answer at once courteous and true, but
he promised to use his influence as intermediary with Henrietta, and he was
so far successful that the young Queen was induced to regard the Duke, at
any rate outwardly, with greater favour.

But the situation, as regarded its real objects, was foredoomed to failure.
Madame S. Georges, the Bishop of Mende, and the Fathers of the Oratory had
so prejudiced Charles' mind that he refused to receive Frenchmen, bishop or
religious, at the Court of his Queen. There was a deadlock, and
Bassompierre, who had made matters worse by his grave indiscretion in
bringing as his chaplain the Queen's late confessor, Father Sancy, with all
his diplomacy could do no more. He was indeed anxious to be gone. The
account of his embassy in England, which he included in his memoirs, is
penned in no flattering spirit towards this island, but the full irritation
of his feelings can only be gathered from the private letters which, during
his sojourn in London, he dispatched to the Bishop of Mende, who was with
Richelieu at Pontoise, watching the course of events.

"I have found," wrote the enraged diplomatist in one of these epistles,
"humility among the Spaniards and courtesy among the Swiss during the
embassies which I have carried on there on behalf of the King, but the
English have abated nothing of their natural pride and arrogance."[59]

The Bishop sent a sympathetic answer, commenting on our national character
in a manner which is worth quoting, as it serves to explain the
unpopularity of that fascinating person in English society.

"I am not surprised," so ran the letter, "that you have found more courtesy
and satisfaction among the Spaniards and the Swiss than in the island on
the shores of which the tempest has thrown you. I myself have always
considered the English less reasonable than the Swiss, and at the same time
less faithful, while I think they are just as vainglorious as the
Spaniards, without possessing anything of their real merit."

This was not all. A report was about that the Bishop wished to return to
England, and he thoughtfully seized the opportunity to set everybody's mind
at rest on the subject. The English were to have no uneasiness, he was only
too willing to fall in with their wishes. "They will not have much
difficulty in carrying into effect the resolution which they have taken to
prevent my return," he wrote, "for both parties are quite of one opinion on
that matter, my humour (setting aside the interests of my mistress) being
rather to fly from than to invite another sojourn in England. It would need
a very definite command to induce me to live there again, while to persuade
myself to remain here I have only to consult my own inclination."[60]

So Bassompierre departed, taking with him, as a slight compensation for his
trouble, some English priests who had been released from prison in
compliment to the King of France. And thus ended the last stage of this
sordid struggle which came near to wrecking the happiness of what was to
prove one of the most loving of royal marriages.

It is hard in such a matter to apportion blame. Charles cannot be acquitted
of harshness and of a certain degree of subservience to Buckingham, while
the act of expulsion was a flagrant breach of the faith plighted only a
year before to a brother-sovereign. But it must be remembered that most of
the information comes from French, and consequently hostile, sources. After
all, the King of England's real fault was that, by his marriage contract,
he had allowed himself to be placed in an impossible position, from which
only violence could extricate him. On their own showing it is difficult to
see how any self-respecting husband, let alone a great king, could have
endured the Bishop of Mende, Madame S. Georges, or even Father Bérulle.
They, for their part, had much to complain of, and they saw in every
approximation of their mistress to English customs and ways of thought a
menace, not only to the interests of France, but to the immortal soul
placed in their charge. As for Henrietta herself, she can hardly be blamed.
She was but a child, and it is not surprising that she followed the counsel
of those whom her mother had set over her. The severest thing that can
justly be said of her is that, at the age of sixteen, she had not
completely learned the lesson of a wife, and, above all, of a royal wife,
"to forget her own people and her father's house."

[Footnote 29: The _Mémoires inédits du Comte Leveneur de Tillières_,
published in 1862, are one of the principal authorities for Henrietta
Maria's early married life: they are very full and vivid, but are coloured
by the writer's dislike to the English, and especially to Buckingham.]

[Footnote 30: Cf. the following description of Paris in a humorous poem of
the day:

  "We came to Paris, on the Seyn,
   'Tis wondrous faire but nothing clean,
       'Tis Europes greatest Town.
   How strong it is, I need not tell it,
   For any man may easily smell it,
       That walkes it up and down."

_Musarum Deliciæ_, by Sir J. M. and Ja. S. (1655), p. 19.]

[Footnote 31: _Musarum Deliciæ_, by Sir J. M. and Ja. S. (1655), p. 49.]

[Footnote 32: She had been in Turin with Henrietta's sister, Christine.]

[Footnote 33: The French Oratory was quite distinct from the better known
Roman Oratory founded by S. Philip Neri.]

[Footnote 34: See the list of miracles attributed to his intercession in
_La Vie du Cardinal Bérulle_. Par Germain Habert, Abbé de Cerisy (1646).
Liv. III, chaps. XIV., XV.]

[Footnote 35: P.R.O. Roman Transcripts.]

[Footnote 36: The English Catholics were anxious lest she should allow
herself to be crowned by a heretic: Fr. Leander de S. Martino, an English
Benedictine, wrote a long letter to Bérulle on the subject in June, 1625,
expressing his anxiety. Archives Nationales, M. 232.]

[Footnote 37: As, for instance, Sir Lewis Lewknor, an official charged with
the reception of ambassadors: he received £2000 per annum from Richelieu,
and he was particularly useful to the French, whom he did not openly
favour, because, being a Catholic, he received the confidences of the
Spaniards and the Flemings.]

[Footnote 38: Bérulle to P. Bertin, Superior of French Oratory at Rome.
Arch. Nat., M. 232.]

[Footnote 39: La Hermana y Mujer [of Buckingham] son Eresas muy
perniciosas. Spanish news-letter, P.R.O. Roman Transcripts.]

[Footnote 40: "My Wyfe beginnes to mend her maners."--Harleian MS., 6988,
f. 5.]

[Footnote 41: _Verissima relacion en que se da cuenta en el estado en que
estan los Catholicos de Inglaterra, ete Sevilla_ (1626).]

[Footnote 42: See chapter IV.]

[Footnote 43: Bishop of Mende to Ville-aux-clercs. MS. Français, 3693.]

[Footnote 44: "Seeing daylie the malitiusness of the Monsers by making and
fomenting discontentments in my Wyfe I could tarie no longer from
adverticing of you that I meane to seeke for no other grounds to casier my
Monsers,"--Harleian MS., 6988, f. I.]

[Footnote 45: Arch. Nat., M. 232, from which the account in the text is
taken: perhaps an account written by Charles or Buckingham would have been
somewhat different: it is printed in an article entitled "L'Ambassade de M.
de Blainville," published in _Revue des Questions Historiques_, 1878, t.
23.]

[Footnote 46: Bishop of Mende to (apparently) Richelieu, June 24th, 1626.
"La Royne ma maitresse est reduite de fouiller dans nos bourses, si ces
choses dureront sa maison durera fort peu."--Affaires Etrangères Ang., t.
41, f. 133.]

[Footnote 47: The date is not certain, it was probably at the time of the
Jubilee, June, 1626: in February Henrietta had written to the Pope asking
that she, her household, and the Catholics of England might share in the
privileges of the Jubilee.--P.R.O. Roman Transcripts.]

[Footnote 48: Archives of See of Westminster. See Appendix, Doc. I.]

[Footnote 49: _Court and Times of Charles I_, I, 119.]

[Footnote 50: Such petty malice was part of Charles' character: cf. his
refusal to allow Sir John Eliot to be buried at his home in Cornwall.]

[Footnote 51: Aff. Etran. Ang., t. 41: it is endorsed "copie," and is
perhaps a rough draft; it is apparently in Henrietta's handwriting. "Mamie"
is Madame S. Georges.]

[Footnote 52: Charles wrote a violent note to Buckingham, commanding him to
see to the departure of the French. "If you can by faire meanes (but stike
not longe in disputing) otherways force them away, dryving away so manie
wild beasts untill you have shipped them and so the Devill go with them."
The French landed at Calais, August 3/13, 1626.]

[Footnote 53: Bishop of Mende to Mary de' Medici. Aff. Etran. Ang., t. 41.]

[Footnote 54: The second Oratorian who remained was Father Viette, who
became the Queen's confessor on Father Philip's death. She was allowed to
keep also a few inferior French servants, and Maurice Aubert, who appears
in a list of her servants made at the time of her marriage, continued with
her; he was the companion of Windbank's flight to France in 1641.]

[Footnote 55: Baillon: _Henriette Marie de France, reine d'Angleterre_
(1877), p. 348.]

[Footnote 56: She said, probably with truth, that the money they had
received was in part payment of the debts incurred by her to them: her
statement is confirmed by the fact that Charles requested the French
Government to pay the debts owing to his wife's servants out of the half of
her _dot_, which had not yet been paid.--Aff. Etran. Ang., t. 41.]

[Footnote 57: Mary de' Medici to Henrietta Maria, August 22nd, 1626. MS.
Français, 3692. She wrote on the same day to Charles.]

[Footnote 58: Bishop of Mende to King of France, August 12th, 1626. Aff.
Etran. Ang., t. 41.]

[Footnote 59: Bassompierre to Bishop of Mende, October 17th. MS. Français,
3692.]

[Footnote 60: Bishop of Mende to Bassompierre, October 29th, 1626. MS.
Français, 3692.]



CHAPTER III

THE QUEEN OF THE COURTIERS

  Let's now take our time
  While w'are in our prime,
  And old, old Age is a-farre off:
  For the evill, evill dayes
  Will come on apace
  Before we can be aware of.

                           ROBERT HERRICK


"I was," Henrietta Maria[61] was accustomed to say in the days of her
sorrow, "I was the happiest and most fortunate of Queens. Not only had I
every pleasure which heart could desire, but, above all, I had the love of
my husband, who adored me." The expulsion of her French attendants was the
foundation of the Queen's married happiness. Away from the insinuations of
Madame S. Georges and the gibes of the Bishop of Mende, she began, in an
amazingly short time, to appreciate the good qualities of her husband, to
which indeed she had never been totally blind; and, in the words of Madame
de Motteville, to "make her pleasure of her duty." "The incomparable
virtues of the King," wrote Holland at this time, "are working upon the
generosity and goodness of the Queen, so that his Majesty should soon have
the best wife in the world."[62] And somewhat later an exceptionally
well-qualified witness[63] was able to say that the royal couple lived
together with the satisfaction which all their loyal subjects ought to
desire.

But still one thing was lacking to her full content. Her husband's nature
was such that his full confidence and affection could only be bestowed upon
one person at the time, and she knew well who held the first place in his
heart and counsels. But she had not long to wait. On August 23rd, 1628, the
knife of Felton ended, in a few moments, the dazzling career of the Duke of
Buckingham. Charles' grief was deep and lasting. He had loved his favourite
like a brother, and he never had another personal friend. But to Henrietta
the news, though shocking in its suddenness, cannot have been unwelcome.
She showed all due respect to his memory, but, as one of her friends wrote
to Carlisle, her lamentations were rather "out of discretion than out of a
true sensation of his death. I need not tell you she is glad of it, for you
must imagine as much."[64]

Thenceforward there was nothing to check the growth of an affection which
became the admiration of Europe. Charles' artistic eye had always dwelt
with pleasure upon his wife's beautiful face, and her wit and readiness
relieved his sombre nature much as Buckingham's bright audacity had, and
now that the latter's hostile influence was removed, he was so completely
captivated that the watchful courtiers soon perceived that the advent of
another favourite was not to be feared, "for the King has made over all his
affection to his wife."[65] The tokens of his love were innumerable. He
delighted in making her gifts of jewels, of religious pictures, of anything
which he thought would please her. He caused her portrait, painted by the
hand of Van Dyck, to be hung in his bedroom, and as early as 1629 it was
remarked that he wished always to be in her company. Nor was she behindhand
in affection. It is pleasant to read that when the King was away for a few
days his wife lay awake at night sighing for his return, and that, on
another occasion when she was at Tunbridge Wells drinking the waters which
were just coming into fashion, she was so home-sick for her husband after a
few days' separation that she cut short her visit and went home to him,
arriving after a long journey quite unexpectedly. Such little incidents
show that Charles was not exaggerating when, in 1630, he wrote to his
mother-in-law that "the only dispute that now exists between us is that of
conquering each other by affection, both esteeming ourselves victorious in
following the will of the other";[66] and that the virtuous Habington, the
poet of wedded love, was not paying one of the empty compliments of a
courtier when he appealed to the example of his sovereign to enforce the
lessons of virtue:

  "Princes' example is a law: then we
  If loyalle subjects must true lovers be."[67]

Of course the Queen's great wish was to give the King, her husband, an heir
to his throne. But for several years no children appeared, and it was not
until the early spring of 1629 that Henrietta retired to Greenwich for her
first confinement, and even then her hopes were disappointed, for the boy
who was born only lived long enough to receive his father's name. She
herself was very ill; but she showed the brave spirit which never deserted
her in suffering, and her physician was able to report that she was "full
of strength and courage."[68]

But the next year she was more fortunate, perhaps because, owing to her
mother's representations, she had been induced to take great care of
herself and to avoid exertion. This time she chose to remain at St. James's
Palace, which was considered a very suitable place as being near London,
and yet quiet and retired; and there, on May 29th, 1630, the boy was born
who was afterwards Charles II. The delight of the parents and of the Court
may be imagined, while the people at large, who had not been very anxious
for the birth of an heir to the Popish Queen, now remembering that the baby
was the first native-born prince since the children of Henry VIII, entered
with zest into the public rejoicings, which took the usual form of
bell-ringing, bonfires, and fireworks, and which were increased by a
general pardon and release of prisoners. The christening, though it was a
private ceremony, was worthy of the rank of the child who was the first
prince to be born heir, not only of England, but of Scotland also. It took
place in the chapel of St. James's Palace, in the middle of which a dais
was erected bearing the silver font which the loyalty of the Lord Mayor of
London had provided. The chapel and every room through which the
christening procession had to pass were hung with choice tapestry, while
the greatness of the occasion was marked by the munificent gift of £1000
which was offered to the nurse.

It was a happy day for Henrietta, but marred by one disappointment, and
that a great one. It was the King of England's wish that, against the
spirit of the stipulations of his marriage treaty,[69] his heir's
christening should follow the rites of the Established Church.
Nevertheless, two of the baby's sponsors, the King of France and the
Queen-Mother, were Catholics. These and the second godfather, the Prince
Palatine, were represented by three noble Scots, the Duke of Lennox--a
member of a family that the Queen particularly disliked--the Duke of
Hamilton, and the Duchess of Richmond; and the King, with characteristic
unwisdom, desired to pay yet another compliment to his native land by
appointing another Scotchwoman, Lady Roxburgh, to the office of governess
to his infant son. But this lady, who was a Catholic and who, as lady of
the bedchamber to the consort of James, was supposed to have exercised a
baleful religious influence over her mistress, discreetly refused the
offered dignity, which was passed on to the Countess of Dorset, whose
husband was to fill the complimentary position of governor to the royal
child.

The baby inherited neither the stately beauty of his father nor the
vivacious prettiness of his mother, though he was rather like his
grandfather, Henry IV, whom Henrietta so greatly resembled. But his size
and forwardness atoned for his lack of beauty. "He is so fat and so tall,"
wrote the happy mother to her old friend Madame S. Georges, "that he is
taken for a year old, and he is only four months. His teeth are already
beginning to come. I will send you his portrait as soon as he is a little
fairer, for at present he is so dark that I am quite ashamed of him."[70]
And again, somewhat later, her humorous delight in her baby comes out in
another letter to the same correspondent. "I wish you could see the
gentleman, for he has no ordinary mien. He is so serious in all he does,
that I cannot help fancying him far wiser than myself."[71]

Henrietta's happiness was crowned by the birth of her son, which was
followed as the years went on by that of other sons and daughters.[72] But
apart from these domestic joys, in which she delighted with all the
strength of her healthy nature, her life was a very happy one. To the
pleasures of love she added those of friendship, and she had the art, all
too rare among the great, of treating her friends with openness and
confidence without losing her royal dignity. No sooner were her French
ladies gone than she turned to those of her new country to fill their
place, and perhaps her principal choice was not altogether a happy one.

No woman of that time was more brilliant than Lucy, Countess of Carlisle,
whose romantic friendship with the great Strafford, which the imagination
of a modern poet has immortalized, is only one of her claims to
remembrance. A member of the border House of Percy, she incurred, by her
marriage with a Scotch nobleman, the serious displeasure of her father,
who, as he said, could not bear that his daughter should dance Scotch jigs.
But her union with the distinguished Lord Carlisle, whom Henrietta speedily
forgave for his share in her early troubles, was to her advantage at Court,
where, in virtue of her ten years' seniority over the young Queen, she
wielded the influence which often belongs to a married woman, who, though
still in the bloom of her beauty, has had time to acquire a knowledge of
life. That she was beautiful her portraits remain to testify; that in the
mingled arts of coquetry and diplomacy she was so proficient as to
challenge comparison with Madame de Chevreuse herself there is ample
evidence in the fascination which she exercised, first over Strafford and
then over Pym, neither of whom were men to be caught by mediocre ability or
charm; that she was cowardly, false, treacherous to her heart's core
Henrietta's simple and affectionate nature had as yet no means of
discovering.[73]

There was another man of less intellectual distinction whom she had once
been able to lead captive by her charms, but who had deserted her for a
royal mistress across the Channel. The story of her frustrated revenge,
though it rests upon the authority of gossiping memoirs,[74] is so
characteristic of the lady herself and of others who played a part in
Henrietta's life, that it carries with it some degree of conviction, and
moreover has an illustrative value apart from its literal truth.

Lady Carlisle was not a woman to forgive a faithless lover, even though
that lover were the favourite of her King and had left her for the smiles
of a foreign Queen. She determined to take a delicate revenge which should
punish both the Duke of Buckingham and the Queen of France; and to compass
this end she became one of the earliest of the English spies of Richelieu,
who would be only too glad to welcome any proof of the levity of Anne of
Austria.

The Countess laid her plans well. She noticed that Buckingham, after his
return from France, was accustomed to wear some diamond studs which she had
never seen before, and which she conjectured correctly to have been given
to him by the Queen of France. She determined to gain possession of one of
these jewels, that she might send it to Richelieu, who would be at no loss
to draw his own conclusions. A Court ball gave her an opportunity, and
before the evening was out she held in her hand the compromising ornament.

But she was to be outwitted after all by Buckingham, who, whatever his
failings, was neither a tepid nor a dull-witted lover, and who was able to
gauge, pretty correctly, the spite of the woman he knew so well. Taking
advantage of his unbounded power with the King, he obtained the closure of
all the ports of England for a certain time, during which interval he
caused an exact replica of the stolen stud to be made, which, together with
the remaining studs, he dispatched to Anne. The Queen of France was thus
able to produce the jewels when her husband, their original donor, asked
for them, and the accusing stud which the malice of her enemies sent to
Paris was deprived of power to injure her.

It is not surprising that there were people at the Court of England who
disliked the young Queen's intimacy with Lady Carlisle. That lady, whose
talk with those of her own sex was ever of dress and fashion, had already,
it was rumoured, taught Henrietta to paint, and she would, no doubt, lead
her on to other "debaucheries"; but her influence seemed established. By
the royal favour she enjoyed a pension of £2000 a year, and Henrietta's
affection was so great that even when the Countess had the smallpox she
could hardly be kept from her side. The Queen was the convalescent's first
visitor, and a little later she permitted her favourite to appear at Court
in a black velvet mask, so that she might enjoy her society at an earlier
date than otherwise would have been possible, for it was not to be expected
that Lady Carlisle would show her face in the circles of which she was one
of the brightest ornaments until its beauty was fully restored. Such a
woman could not fail to arouse jealousy. Buckingham's relatives, who served
the Queen, feared and distrusted her, and perhaps her most formidable rival
in Henrietta's affection was the Duke's sister, the pious and cultured Lady
Denbigh, who, distasteful at first, had won her mistress' heart, and whose
long fidelity, which neither years nor exile could diminish, contrasts
favourably with the self-seeking of the more brilliant Lady Carlisle.

[Illustration: OLD SOMERSET HOUSE

FROM AN ENGRAVING AFTER AN ANCIENT PAINTING IN DULWICH COLLEGE]

But the society of friends of her own sex was only one among the many joys
which were Henrietta's during the happy years which elapsed between the
troubles of her youth and the storm of the Civil War. For a few months
after the departure of the French her husband seems to have kept her short
of money,[75] but in 1627 she enjoyed the income of £18,000, which was
guaranteed to her by the terms of her marriage contract. Moreover, large
grants of manors and lands were made to her. Thus came into her possession
the park of East Greenwich, whither she was wont to retire when she wished
for country air and quiet, and yet could not be far from town; thus she
acquired Oatlands in Surrey, the pleasant country-house of which nothing
now remains, where she spent many happy days with her friends and children;
thus she was able to call her own Somerset or Denmark House, her much-loved
and beautiful London home which stood with other noblemen's houses facing
the Strand, while behind lovely pleasure gardens sloped down to the still
silver Thames. None of her other houses, probably, were as dear to her as
this, where she kept an establishment befitting her rank as Queen-Consort,
and where she frequently gave entertainments which reflected the taste and
grace of their hostess, and to which she had the pleasure of inviting her
husband, the King.

Henrietta was not a lady of literary tastes, and in spite of the fact that
the Scotch poet, Sir Robert Ayton, was her private secretary, her patronage
of general literature was confined to smiling on poets, such as Edmund
Waller, who presented her with copies of complimentary verses, and to
receiving the dedication of devotional works, usually translated from
foreign originals. But to the drama she was devoted, and she specially
liked the pretty and fashionable plays known as masques, of which the
veteran laureate, Ben Jonson, wrote a number, and of which a younger poet,
John Milton, produced in _Comus_, the most famous example. Henrietta was
delighted with the great pageant and masque offered to their Majesties by
the Inns of Court in 1633,[76] and even the grave Laud, when he entertained
royalty at Oxford in 1638, provided a play, Cartwright's _Royal Slave_, for
the amusement of his guests. But the Queen's pleasure was not only as a
spectator. As a child she had been accustomed to take her part in private
theatricals acted in the spacious _salons_ of the Luxembourg, where Rubens'
voluptuous women looked down upon the royal actresses. She brought the
taste for these amusements with her to England. The first Christmas after
her marriage she and her ladies acted a French pastoral at Somerset House,
in which she took the leading part. "It would have been thought a strange
sight once,"[77] commented sourly her new subjects.

But she was not to be deterred from her pleasures. She was always too
careless of public opinion, and, as an acute and sympathetic observer
remarked somewhat later, she was a true Bourbon in her love of amusement.
To a lady whose dancing was something quite unusual, and whose sweet voice
and skill in touching the lute testified to real musical taste, dramatic
representations were naturally attractive. Her second English Christmas was
enlivened by a masque, in which, as her French attendants were gone by this
time, she had the assistance of her English friends. Her own band of
players was always ready, and played for her amusement, now at Hampton
Court, now at Somerset House, and it was owing to her influence and
patronage that theatres increased to such an extent in the capital that the
Puritan feeling of the City was aroused, which produced an order in Council
"for the restraint of the inordinate use and company of playhouse and
players." The playgoers were to content themselves with two theatres, of
which one was to be in Middlesex and the other across the river in Surrey,
while no plays were to be acted on Sunday, in Lent, or in times of common
infection.

But the merrymakings of the Court became more instead of less as the years
went on. In 1631 the Queen was so taken up with her Shrovetide play that
she had no thoughts to spare for important news which came from France, and
the next year she took the principal part in an elaborate play, _The
Shepherd's Paradise_, which was written for her by Walter Montagu, who
added to his fine manners and diplomatic skill some pretensions (if nothing
more) to literature. This play, which is of the allegorical type so dear to
the heart of the seventeenth century, is indeed a very poor one, and hardly
contains a line which rises above the level of an indifferent verse-maker.
It is, moreover, fatiguingly long, and the Queen must have found her part a
great labour to learn, specially as, notwithstanding her seven years'
residence in England, she was not yet perfect in the English tongue, and
indeed was acting partly in order to improve herself in this necessary
accomplishment.[78] Her companions in the play were her ladies, for not a
man was admitted even to take the male parts. But in spite of difficulties,
when the night of the representation came, everything went off merrily at
Somerset House; all acted with great spirit, and the Queen was able to
speak with playful conviction the oath of the new queendom to which she had
been elected:--

  "By beauty, Innocence, and all that's faire
  I, Bellesa, as a Queen do sweare,
  To keep the honour and the regall due
  Without exacting anything that's new,
  And to assume no more to me than must
  Give me the meanes and power to be just,
  And but for charity and mercies cause
  Reserve no power to suspend the Lawes.
  This do I vow even as I hope to rise
  From this into another Paradise."[79]

The author of these lines was in high favour, not only with the Queen, but
with the King, who went out of his way to congratulate his father, the Earl
of Manchester, on such a son. This approval more than compensated for the
castigation of the pastoral by another poet, whose verses, unlike
Montagu's, still retain power to charm:--

  "Wat Montague now stood forth to his trial,
  And did not so much as suspect a denial;
  But witty Apollo ask'd him first of all
  If he understood his new Pastoral.

  "For if he could do it, 'twould plainly appear
  He understood more than any man there,
  And did merit the bayes above all the rest;
  But the mounsieur was modest, and silence confest."[80]

There was another slight annoyance connected with the play which was,
perhaps, even less felt than Suckling's wit, for what did it matter to
Henrietta, to Montagu, or to any of the brilliant company, if a
cross-grained puritanical lawyer such as William Prynne chose to insult the
Queen by base and indiscriminate charges against actresses, thereby
bringing upon himself the just punishment of the loss of his ears?

All disagreeable matters were, indeed, shut out from the brilliant
drawing-rooms of Henrietta Maria, where the hostess set an example of free
amiability at which strict persons looked a little askance. Those were most
welcome who could most contribute by beauty, wit, or conversation to the
entertainment of all. Lord Holland,[81] the most elegant dandy of the day,
was often to be seen there chatting with the Queen about France or Madame
de Chevreuse, to whom he was known to be devoted. Walter Montagu's ready
wit and charming conversation always availed to win him a few smiles from
his royal hostess. Henry Percy was welcomed as much, perhaps, for the sake
of his sister, Lady Carlisle, as for any shining qualities of his own.
Above all, Henry Jermyn, the Queen's greatest friend--and she was a woman
of many men friends--was constantly to be seen at her side, building up a
friendship which only death was to end.

It is hard to account for Henrietta's affection for this man--an affection
so great that from that day to this scandal has been busy with their names.
Henry Jermyn was not particularly well born, and he was neither radiantly
handsome like Holland, nor clever and witty like Montagu. His abilities,
which were severely tested in the course of his life, did not rise above
mediocrity; his religion, such of it as existed, was of a very nebulous
character, and his morals were of a distinctly commonplace type; indeed,
one of his early achievements at Court was to run off with a maid of
honour. To set against all this we only know that he was a man of very soft
and gentle manners, such as made him a fitting agent in delicate
negotiations, and that when the day of trouble came he showed considerable
fidelity to the interests of a losing cause. That Henrietta should have
lavished on such a man an affection and a confidence which some of her best
friends, both now and later, thought exaggerated, is surprising; but she
was never a good judge of character, and it must be remembered that
personal charm is one of the most evanescent of qualities which cannot be
bottled for the use of the historian.

That in these happy days Henrietta was one of the brightest ornaments of
her own Court cannot be doubted. Old men, who remembered the later years of
Elizabeth, must have contrasted the forced compliments offered to her faded
charms with the free devotion laid at the feet of this young and beautiful
woman,

  "In whom th' extremes of power and beauty move,
  The Queen of Britain and the Queen of Love."[82]

Her beauty soon reached its prime and soon faded a little, so that in later
days she used to say with a touch of pique that no woman was handsome after
two-and-twenty. Though she was not tall, her figure was good, and her sweet
face with its animated expression attracted all beholders. Fastidious
critics did, indeed, find fault with her mouth, which was rather large, but
they had nothing but praise for her well-formed nose, her pretty
complexion, and, above all, for her sparkling black eyes which, as in the
days of her girlhood, were her most striking beauty; so lovely were they
that the Puritan Sir Simonds d'Ewes was fain to lament that their owner
should be in the thraldom of Popery.[83]

With such beauty to adorn, no woman, much less a Frenchwoman and a queen,
could be indifferent to dress. Henrietta took a great interest in the
subject, and loved to deck herself in the beautiful robes which were then
in fashion and which we know so well from the portraits of Van Dyck. The
trousseau which she had brought with her to England bore witness to her
brother's generosity, and was so ample and magnificent[84] that it may well
have lasted her life, as trousseaux did in those days. Four dozen
embroidered nightgowns with a dozen night-caps to match, four dozen
chemises with another "fort belle, toute pointe coupe" thrown in for
special occasions, and five dozen handkerchiefs seem an ample allowance of
linen even for a queen, while the five petticoats which were provided made
up in splendour what they lacked in number. The dozen pairs of English silk
stockings, to which was added a dainty pair of red velvet boots lined with
fur, were a luxury to which few could have aspired. But it was in the
matter of gowns that Henrietta was most fortunate. No less than thirteen
did she possess, apart from her "royal robe," and all were very
magnificent, four being of gold and silver cloth on a satin foundation,
whether of black, crimson, green, or "jus de lin," those of the two
last-named colours being provided with a court train and long hanging
sleeves. As for the robe of state, which perhaps is the same as that which
had already done duty at the wedding, it surpassed the rest in splendour,
being of red velvet covered with fleur-de-lis. A heavy mantle of the same
material and colour lined up with ermine was evidently intended to be worn
with it on ceremonial occasions.

Such toilettes would have been incomplete without magnificent jewels, of
which the taste of the time allowed great display. With Mary de' Medici
they were a passion, and her daughter, though she had no avarice in her
nature and was to show herself capable of sacrificing jewels or any other
material good for those she loved, yet was far from indifferent to the
sparkle and colour of these beautiful ornaments. Many and valuable were the
jewels which on her departure from France were handed over to the care of
her _dame d'atours_, who must have found them an anxious charge. Fillets of
pearls, chains of precious stones, diamond ear-rings, a magnificent diamond
ring, all these were provided for the young Queen, besides such fine jewels
as a cross of diamonds and pearls, an anchor studded with four diamonds,
and a "bouquet" of five petals made of diamonds, together with a quantity
of lesser trinkets, including several dozen diamond buttons to be used as
trimmings for dresses. It may be safely conjectured that the Queen found
plenty of use for a "grand mirror, silver-backed," which she brought over
with her from Paris, and it is not surprising to learn that Father Bérulle
thought her rather too fond of dress.

A very girl Henrietta remained for several years after her marriage.
Politics did not greatly interest her, and her trust in her husband was
such that she turned aside from serious matters to employ herself in bright
trifles, for, to the _joye de vivre_, which came to her from her father,
she added a delight in all that was pretty, which recalls her descent from
Florence and the Medici. She had, also, a taste for the grotesque which was
common in her day, and she long kept at her Court a pugnacious dwarf, by
name Geoffrey Hudson, who, later on, during the exile, caused her
considerable embarrassment by killing a gentleman in a duel. There is ample
evidence of her interest in dainty possessions and amusements. Now she is
writing to Madame S. Georges for velvet petticoats from her Paris tailor,
or "a dozen pairs of sweet chamois gloves and ... one of doe skin." Now she
is receiving "rare and outlandish flowers," or asking her mother to send
her fruit trees and plants for her gardens, whose "faire flowers" she so
cherished as to merit the dedication by Parkinson the herbalist of his
Paradisus Terrestris. Or, again, she is setting out with her lords and
ladies to celebrate in good old English fashion the festival of May Day,
and to witness all those pretty rights of country festivity over which the
withering wind of the Civil War had not yet passed.

                                       "Marke
  How each field turns to a street: each street a Parke
  Made green and trimm'd with trees: see how
  Devotion gives each house a Bough
  Or Branch: each Porch, each doore, ere this
  An Arke a Tabernacle is
  Made up of white thorn neatly enterwove
  As if here were those cooler shades of love."[85]

Nor was the Queen merely an idle spectator. No sooner did the first snowy
May bush catch her eye than, with all the zest of a village maiden, she
leaped from her fine coach, and breaking off a bough placed it merrily in
her hat.

In all the revels of the Court Henrietta's was the moving spirit, but her
sweetness of temper prevented her energy from degenerating into
domineering. She was never really popular with the people at large, on
account of her race and her religion, and there were murmurs now and then
at Court about her undue preference for the Scotch. But that in her own
circle she was tenderly loved there can be no doubt. Innocent,[86] yet so
sprightly that she sometimes gave scandal without suspecting it; gay, yet
with moments of sadness which only solitude could relieve; open and
talkative, yet faithful to conceal secrets, "for a queen should be as a
confessor, hearing all yet telling nothing"; sympathetic with sorrow, yet
chaffing unmercifully the _malades imaginares_ of a luxurious Court;
delicate in consideration for the feelings of the meanest of her servants,
yet gifted with a caustic tongue used at times rather unsparingly. Such was
Henrietta Maria, Queen of England.

But it is time to turn from the merely social and decorative aspect of
Henrietta's married life to consider the interests and intrigues which,
behind the brilliant show, were working and struggling.

One of the first questions which came up for settlement on the conclusion
of peace between England and France in 1629 was that of the Queen's
household, and the ambassador sent to London to arrange this matter turned
out to be one of those fascinating but factious persons whom ill-fortune
threw so often in Henrietta's path. To make things worse he found already
in England another Frenchman more fascinating and more factious than
himself, with whom he formed a close friendship. The Chevalier de Jars,[87]
whose exile was the result of Anne of Austria's affection and of
Richelieu's dislike, added to all his other charms a skill in the game of
tennis, which commended him to the King of England, himself a proficient in
the game.

Charles de l'Aubépine, Marquis of Chateauneuf, arrived in London in 1629.
He was a finished gentleman, and he was able quickly to win the confidence
of the Queen whose heart always turned kindly to those of her own nation.
But the ambassador was not slow in discovering that instead of having to
defend an ill-used and discontented wife, as perhaps he had expected, he
must adapt his diplomacy to the requirements of a happy married couple. "I
am not only the happiest princess, but the happiest woman in the
world,"[88] said Henrietta to him triumphantly, while Charles was careful
to show his affection for his beautiful wife by kissing her a hundred times
in the course of an hour as Chateauneuf looked on. "You have not seen that
in Piedmont," said the King, turning to his foreign guest, "nor," he added,
sinking his voice to a discreet whisper, "in France either."

Such news was gratifying to Mary de' Medici's maternal affection, and
Chateauneuf dwelt in his dispatches upon the kindness of the King, on the
pretty gifts of jewellery which he gave to his wife, and on the general
happiness of the royal marriage. But the real objects of his mission,
despite the personal favour with which he was regarded, were not advanced,
for Henrietta had now no wish to receive a French establishment such as she
had wept for so bitterly three years earlier.[89] She was now an English
queen, and she was well content with the attendance which her husband
provided for her. She confessed, however, that she should like to have a
lady of the bedchamber to whom she could talk in her own language and who
could come to church with her, "for the Countess of Buckingham and Madame
Savage are often away, and the rest of my ladies are Protestants," she
said.

She took a favourable opportunity of expressing her views to her brother's
ambassador with the frankness she was accustomed to show towards those she
liked. She invited him to stay with her at Nonsuch "as a private person
serving the Queen," and one evening there, after supper, when Charles had
ridden away to hunt, she requested her guest to walk with her in the park,
to enjoy the coolness of the July evening. A long conversation followed.
Chateauneuf spoke to the Queen of the great affection which her mother had
for her, the daughter whom she had kept longest at her side, and whose
marriage was her own work. Henrietta assented, and confessed that the
jealousy she had once felt of her sister Christine was unfounded, but she
quickly went on to speak of the happiness of her married life and of the
religious freedom which she enjoyed. "I do not want another governess," she
declared at last. "I am no longer a child to allow myself to be ruled."[90]

There were indeed many difficulties to be smoothed if Mary de' Medici was
to realize her hope of bringing her young daughter again into tutelage.
Both Charles and Henrietta saw what the aim of the French Government was,
and they quietly defeated it. The ecclesiastical question, which will be
discussed elsewhere, was, indeed, settled by a compromise favourable to
Catholic interests, but no _gouvernante_ arrived to oust the Countess of
Buckingham, who held the position formerly occupied by Madame S. Georges;
and the doctor, "a Frenchman and a Catholic," who came to supplant the
excellent Mayerne, a learned French Protestant who served Henrietta
faithfully for many years, found his position at the English Court so
intolerable that he begged to be recalled.

But there is another aspect of Chateauneuf's brief stay in England which
requires careful consideration. The French ambassador was believed to be
devoted to the interests of Richelieu, or else, assuredly, he had never set
foot in the English Court; but even Richelieu was sometimes mistaken, and
the man whom he had chosen to represent him was probably already jealous of
his patron, and already falling under the influence of the bright eyes of
Madame de Chevreuse, the friend of Queen Anne, the ally of Spain.

It is probable also that Henrietta was beginning to look coldly upon
Richelieu even before she met Chateauneuf, for other influences were
working against him in her mind. The day of Dupes was fast approaching,
when her mother would leave for ever the Court of France. Gaston of
Orleans' persistent hostility to the Cardinal was not without its weight
with his sister. Bérulle, whose memory she deeply revered, had died in
1628, summing up the experience of a lifetime in his dying words, "As for
the Court it is but vanity"; it was well known that he was at enmity with
the man who had raised him from the simple priesthood to the dignity of the
cardinal's purple. Taking all these things into account, it is not
surprising that the young Queen of England turned no unwilling ear to the
insinuation of Chateauneuf and the hints of Jars, and the result was an
intrigue which only became apparent when the ambassador had returned to
France, leaving the fascinating Chevalier to carry on the work which he had
begun.

The interaction of French and English politics now becomes of great
importance. Charles never allowed another to occupy the place of
Buckingham, either in his heart or in his counsels; but at this time his
chief dependence was upon the Treasurer, Richard Weston, who became Earl of
Portland in 1633; a dull, safe man, who could be trusted to prevent the
disagreeable necessity of calling a Parliament. He was, certainly at the
beginning of his career, rather pro-Spanish in his sympathies, and he died
a Catholic; but his aversion from war so recommended him to Richelieu, who
knew that while he held the reins of power England would not interfere in
his continental designs, that an understanding and almost a friendship
gradually grew up between them.

Henrietta never liked Weston. Perhaps she was jealous of her husband's
regard, and saw in him a potential Buckingham; certainly she disliked his
close-fisted ways, which curbed her extravagance, always considerable, in
money matters. She allowed a cabal of discontented spirits to gather round
her, whose double aim was the overthrow of the powerful minister in England
and of the far greater statesman across the Channel. That cabal, founded in
French opinion by Chateauneuf,[91] included most of the Queen's personal
friends. Holland,[92] who was jealous of Weston, and whose devotion to
Madame de Chevreuse accounted for his attitude to Richelieu, without taking
into account a warm friendship with Chateauneuf; Montagu, who laid such
portion of his homage as he could spare from Queen Anne at the feet of the
same seductive lady, and who had been and was "very well" with Monsieur the
factious Duke of Orleans; Jermyn and Henry Percy--these are some of
those[93] implicated in Henrietta's first attempt at the fascinating game
of diplomatic chicanery. To them must be added Madame de Vantelet, whom
Chateauneuf thought a little neglected, but who, as the only French lady of
the royal household, had considerable influence over her mistress, and
whose partisanship became so marked that the pension assigned to her by the
King of France was taken away.

The difficulties began with the arrival of Chateauneuf's successor, the
Marquis of Fontenay-Mareuil, who threw himself on the side of Weston, and
who soon found that he had to reckon with a foe in the person of the
Chevalier de Jars. He met with little less opposition from Madame de
Vantelet and from Father Philip, who disliked the ecclesiastical policy of
the ambassador, and who was himself disliked by the party of Richelieu,
because as a subject of King Charles he was quite independent of France and
could not be persuaded to use the great influence over the Queen which his
position gave him in the interests of a foreign Government.[94] The Queen
proved even more intractable. She refused to dismiss Father Philip at her
eldest brother's request, and it was an ominous sign that in 1631 an agent
of Monsieur was in England, even though Charles took care that his presence
should be reported to the French authorities. When the news arrived of the
execution of the gallant Montmorency, Henrietta spoke with pity of his
fate, while her husband, who had many of the instincts of absolutism,
readily allowed that it was a painful necessity.

Her friendship for Jars continued unabated in spite of the open enmity
which that worthy showed to Fontenay-Mareuil, whose position was only
rendered tolerable by the kindness of the King, who had not yet fallen
under the domination of his wife in affairs, however much he might kiss and
caress her. As for Henrietta, she was openly rude to the hapless
ambassador. She frankly told him that though she was obliged to receive him
in his official capacity, out of respect for her brother, she would not
discuss her private affairs with him, and wished to have as little to do
with him personally as possible. It is not surprising that he was anxious
to return to his own country.

Nor is it surprising that he took steps to clear himself from the name
freely bestowed upon him. Apart from the clique of Chateauneuf's personal
friends, of whom the chief perhaps were Holland and Montagu, he was fairly
liked at Court, and he believed that, could he but unmask the intrigues of
the Chevalier and of his patron Chateauneuf, he might yet triumph over his
enemies. With this object in view he descended to a trick hardly in keeping
either with his rank or with his office. One evening when he knew that the
Chevalier would be away from home, he caused two of his servants to enter
the rooms of his rival, where they carried on a burglarious search, which
ended in a small cabinet containing letters finding its way into the hands
of the ambassador.

Jars, as was only to be expected, was exceedingly angry, but he believed
that his influence with the King and the Queen would ensure his redress.
They did indeed take up the matter with great zeal, and, for a few days,
nothing else was talked of at Court. But when Charles came to question
Fontenay-Mareuil, the affair assumed a different complexion. The ambassador
did not attempt to deny the theft. He only said coolly that since Jars was
a subject of the King of France, and since he had reason to believe that he
was compromising his sovereign's interests, he was at liberty to take any
steps which seemed good to him to discover the truth. The King of England
was much struck by this reply, which fitted in well with his own theory and
practice of statecraft. Moreover, much as he personally liked Jars, he
distrusted the political party to which he belonged. He therefore
determined to take no steps in the matter. He showed marked cordiality to
Fontenay-Mareuil, and the Chevalier, to his infinite chagrin, had to submit
to the loss of his papers, which were probably sent to Richelieu to help
forward the disgrace of Chateauneuf.

For in the early spring of 1633 the Court of England was startled by the
news of the arrest of that nobleman and of the Chevalier de Jars, who had
returned to France after the above incident. In a moment the power of those
who were the Queen of England's friends in her native land seemed
destroyed. Chateauneuf was sent into captivity at Angoulême. His fair
charmer, Madame de Chevreuse, was forced into uncongenial retirement, which
ended in her dramatic escape, dressed up as a man, across the Pyrenees into
Spain. While for Jars was reserved a still harder lot. Two years of
rigorous imprisonment in the Bastille were followed by a sentence of death,
pronounced by one who was known as the "bourreau du Cardinal." It was only
as the victim kneeled upon the scaffold awaiting the stroke of the
executioner that he received, by the tardy mercy of Richelieu, a reprieve
from death, a reprieve so sudden and startling that for many minutes he was
too stunned to appreciate his good fortune, which, however, was none too
great, for he was reconducted to his prison, whence all the efforts of his
friends, headed by the Queen of England, were long unavailing to drag him.

It was not indeed likely that Richelieu would look favourably on a request
proferred by Henrietta, for he was beginning to feel that distrust of her
which never left him to the end of his life. Among the letters which the
_affaire_ Chateauneuf placed in his power were many written by English
hands, those of Holland, of Montagu, of the Queen herself. He knew also
that the royal lady had spoken slighting words of him, saying that
Chateauneuf was no participant of the evil counsels of the Cardinal, and
that after the death of the latter he would be able to fill his place much
more worthily. This information, moreover, came from an unimpeachable
source, none other than the Treasurer of England. Weston indeed watched
with no ordinary interest the course of events in France, and it is not
surprising that he did not scruple to report to the Cardinal the
uncomplimentary remarks of the Queen of England. The enemies of Richelieu
were his own, and their overthrow prepared the way for his victory, which,
though on a smaller scale and of less dramatic quality, was equally
decisive.

In the spring of 1633, not long after the fall of Chateauneuf, Jerome
Weston, the son of the Treasurer, was on his way home from Paris, whither
he had been as ambassador. On the journey he happened to fall in with a
letter which he thought to be written by the Earl of Holland, and
remembering the hostility of that nobleman to his father, he took
possession of it. On opening the packet he found within a letter addressed
in the Queen's handwriting, which he did not presume to unfold; but on his
arrival in London laid it, just as he had found it, in the hands of the
King.

It appears that the letter was of trifling importance, being nothing more
than one of the many which, at different times, Henrietta Maria wrote on
behalf of the Chevalier de Jars to Cardinal Richelieu. But Holland, not
unnaturally perhaps, felt that he had been insulted, and he probably
thought that the King would see in Jerome Weston's conduct an affront to
his wife. In a moment of imprudence he sent a challenge by the hands of
Henry Jermyn to the Treasurer's son, asking for satisfaction. The latter,
instead of sending an answer in the way usual in such cases, informed his
father of what had occurred, and Portland without delay laid the matter
before the King. This trifling incident thus became the touchstone of the
respective influence of the Treasurer and of the cabal which was trying to
ruin him. It was the former who came off victorious. Charles' trust in his
minister was not to be shaken, while he was exceedingly angry with Holland.
To his punctilious mind it seemed intolerable that a nobleman of his own
council should send a challenge to one of his servants on account of an act
performed in his official capacity. His orders were sharp and stern.
Jermyn, as an accessory, was to be confined in a private house, while
Holland was ordered to retire to the beautiful mansion at Kensington, which
he had acquired with his wealthy wife Isabel Cope, and there to remain
during His Majesty's pleasure. All believed that the day of the brilliant
Earl was over, and that his friends, particularly Montagu and Madame de
Vantelet, would share in his fall. Holland House was indeed a gilded
prison, but the prisoner was made to feel that the sentence had not been
pronounced in play, for when he showed a disposition to amuse himself with
his friends, Charles sent a stern rebuke, forbidding him to receive
company. Everything pointed to a complete withdrawal of royal favour.

But Henrietta, as she proved in the case of Jars and of many others, was a
good friend. She was truly attached to Holland, who was not only possessed
of unrivalled grace of person and manner, but was connected in her mind
with the happy memory of her marriage. Exerting all the strength of her
growing influence over her husband--an influence which was increased by the
fact that she was about again to become a mother[95]--she succeeded in
winning the pardon of the now repentant Earl. Handsome and brilliant as
ever, Holland reappeared in the drawing-rooms of the Queen, and his
accomplices, Jermyn, Montagu, and Madame de Vantelet, seemed to be in as
high favour at Court as before the occurrence of this untoward event.

But, nevertheless, Portland was the victor. Charles' eyes had been opened
to see the machinations of the enemies of his minister who, notwithstanding
the smothered hostility of the Queen and her circle, preserved his
confidence until his death. Henrietta's first attempt to play the game of
politics--an attempt into which she had been drawn by her friends with
probably little volition or comprehension of her own--had ended on both
sides of the Channel in sorry failure. In France her friends were scattered
and exiled, and the great Cardinal was stronger than ever; in England she
had proved her power to touch her husband's heart, but not to rule his
counsels.

But other days were coming. In March, 1635, Portland died. As Charles grew
older his disposition to keep the direction of affairs in his own hands
grew also, and as Buckingham had had no real successor so Portland had
none. Instead, his heritage of influence and power was divided among
several heirs, one of whom was the Queen of England. Hardly was the
Treasurer in his grave when Henrietta Maria began to show an interest in
political concerns which she had not previously displayed.

She was now twenty-five years of age, and her early marriage had brought
with it an early development of character. She had outgrown the levity of
extreme youth, and her acute and energetic mind was beginning to feel and
respond to the stimulus of affairs. She had not lived for ten years with
her husband without being aware of the difficulties of his sombre and
obstinate character,[96] but she knew also his great love for her, and she
was encouraged by the fact that her devoted servant the Earl of Holland had
been restored to more than his former place in Charles' confidence. Perhaps
the hostile influence which she most feared was that of Laud, for whom the
King had a regard not only as an ecclesiastic after his own heart, but as a
friend and protégé of Buckingham. There was also another and a stronger
mind from which she instinctively shrank, but Wentworth was far away in
Ireland, and, at the time, seldom came into personal relation with her. But
though it is unquestionable that the disappearance of Portland marks a
change which came over the spirit of the Queen, yet that change may easily
be exaggerated. It was, moreover, very gradual, and only became complete in
the dark days which preceded the Civil War. For the present, though the
instincts of intrigue inherent in the Medici blood were aroused, yet her
chief interests remained those of the normal young married woman, her
husband, her babies, her home. If she entered into political matters, as
she had not done in earlier years, yet her efforts were intermittent, and
two independent witnesses attest with regret the indifference of her
attempts to win over the Ministers of State, and the slightness of the part
which she played in public life.[97] Nevertheless, as the death of
Buckingham gave her ascendancy over her husband's heart, so that of
Portland paved the way for the ascendancy which she gradually acquired over
his mind.

It was not to be expected that Henrietta's development of character, slight
and gradual though it might be, would escape the vigilant eyes fixed upon
her from across the Channel. Portland's death was a blow to Richelieu, who,
with a European war about to begin, could not afford the hostility of
England. He did not like Henrietta, but he was too acute not to appreciate
that her character was of the feminine type, which is largely dependent
upon personal influence, and he hoped that the removal of Chateauneuf and
Jars would lead to a return on her part to such sentiments as he conceived
to be fitting towards her native land, in other words, towards himself, for
to the Cardinal even more than to Louis XIV "l'Etat c'est moi." When he
heard how all the courtiers of England, and even the Archbishop of
Canterbury himself, were trying to win her favour, he felt that he must
take some pains to recapture her. His schemes--the details of which may be
read in the dispatches which he wrote and received--were not quite
unsuccessful. Henrietta, for a few years, did show a certain friendliness
towards him, and perhaps, had he complied at once with her wishes in
releasing Jars, he might have won her real friendship.[98] Her friends in
England were not neglected. The unstable Montagu, who at this time had
great influence over her, and who was attempting, quite unsuccessfully, to
make Richelieu forget the part he had played in Chateauneuf's schemes, was
rewarded for his shuffling by the offer of a pension, which, however, the
Queen thought it prudent he should refuse.[99] Certainly grievances of her
French servants were removed. Madame de Vantelet's pension was restored,
while in 1637 Francis Windbank, one of the Secretaries of State, who was
becoming involved in her schemes, was delicately asked to accept a present
in lieu of the less respectable pension.[100]

[Illustration: CHARLES I AND HENRIETTA MARIA

FROM THE PAINTING BY VAN DYCK IN THE GALLERIA PITTI, FLORENCE]

But Richelieu, in spite of all his schemes, was by now aware of one fact,
which redounds greatly to Henrietta's credit: he recognized that she would
never be an Anne of Austria, an alien and spy in the Court of her husband,
and that all he could hope for was to win her as a friendly ally who should
counteract in some degree the pro-Spanish tendencies of the King. "The
Queen of England," ran the instructions given to an ambassador who was
starting for London, "shows herself always very well disposed towards
France. But care must be taken, and she must not be required to act beyond
that which she considers may contribute to the common good of the two
crowns."[101]

For as the years rolled on the union between Charles and Henrietta proved
to be no passing affection born of youth and beauty, but the deep and
increasing love of true marriage. It was as impossible for Henrietta as for
any other good wife, whether princess or peasant, to consider a course of
action apart from the interests of her husband, and those who had dealings
with her had to learn, sometimes painfully, that her first consideration
must always be he of whom she was accustomed to write, with pretty
formality, as "le roi Monseigneur."

She is considered, and rightly, to be a Queen of Tragedy. But in any
estimate of her life it must be remembered that she had at least twelve
years of such happiness as seldom falls to the lot of a royal woman. If
later she was to find out that

  "There is no worldly pleasure here below
  Which by experience doth not folly prove,"

now she was learning

  "But among all the follies that I know
  The sweetest folly in the world is love";[102]

and thus rank and riches, which to the unhappy are but an aggravation of
their misery, could yield to her their truest pleasure. Moreover, she never
had to learn, like poor Anne of Austria, how

  "Rich discontent's a glorious Hell."[103]

Sorrow, when it came, stripped her bare of the mocking accessories of joy.

[Footnote 61: In England Henrietta Maria was known as Queen Mary, but she
always used the signature "Henriette Marie."]

[Footnote 62: _Cal. S.P. Dom._, 1625-6, p. 415.]

[Footnote 63: Sir Theodore Mayerne.]

[Footnote 64: Henry Percy to Earl of Carlisle. _Cal. S.P. Dom._, 1625-49,
p. 292.]

[Footnote 65: _Cal. S.P. Dom._, 1628-9, p. 412. (Dec., 1628.)]

[Footnote 66: Green: _Letters of Queen Henrietta Maria_, p. 15.]

[Footnote 67: William Habington: "Castara."]

[Footnote 68: Sir Theodore Mayerne: _Cal. S.P. Dom._, 1628-9, p. 548.]

[Footnote 69: See chapter IV.]

[Footnote 70: Green: _Letters of Queen Henrietta Maria_, p. 17.]

[Footnote 71: _Ibid._, p. 18.]

[Footnote 72: Mary, who married the Prince of Orange; James, afterwards
King of England; Elizabeth; Henry, Duke of Gloucester; Henrietta Anne,
Duchess of Orleans; Anne, who died as an infant, and another daughter, who
also died in infancy.]

[Footnote 73: Her character is described at length in "The Character of the
Most Excellent Lady Lucy of Carlisle," by Sir Tobie Matthews, prefixed to
_A Collection of Letters made by Sir Tobie Matthews, K.C._ (1660).]

[Footnote 74: Those of Rochefoucault.]

[Footnote 75: In 1626 she was in debt to the amount of £6662 16s. 9d. to
various tradesmen; it was her custom, as that of former Queen-Consorts, to
employ chiefly foreign tradesmen and workmen.]

[Footnote 76: The Queen saw it twice; the music was written by Simon Ivy
and Henry Lawes.]

[Footnote 77: _Cal. S.P. Dom._, 1625-6, p. 273.]

[Footnote 78: In later days Henrietta Maria could say with Katharine of
Aragon,

  "I am not such a truant since my coming
  As not to know the language I have liv'd in."

for her children grew up unable to speak French, and Mme de Motteville says
that she had spoilt her French by talking English. Perhaps even now it was
only the accent which was at fault. Probably she never wrote English with
ease. Her first letter written in that language is to Lord Finch; the date
is about 1641. Green: _Letters of Queen Henrietta Maria_, p. 28.]

[Footnote 79: _The Shepherd's Paradise: a comedy_ (1659).]

[Footnote 80: Sir John Suckling: "A Session of the Poets."]

[Footnote 81: He was the Queen's Lord Steward.]

[Footnote 82: Edmund Waller.]

[Footnote 83: The following description of the Queen is written by a
Catholic hand: "Seremissima Maria Regina quinque ac viginti circiter
annorum, figurâ corporis parvâ, sed venustissimâ, crine cum suo Rege
consimili [dark chestnut] constitutione corporis primâ, de qua hac virtutum
Epitome quod formosissima, quod in ætatis vere, quod Regina, in Aula
deliciis, et voluptatibus affluente, atque etiam Religionibus dispari, nec
vel lerissimam offensionem dederit."--Archives of the See of Westminster:
Status Angliæ, 1635.]

[Footnote 84: The official list of the clothes, jewels, furniture, etc.,
which the Queen brought to England and from which the above account is
taken, forms part of MS. Français, 23,600. Among the furniture are
mentioned "trois tapis de velours" and "deux grands tapis de Turquie."]

[Footnote 85: Robert Herrick: "Corinna's going a-Maying."]

[Footnote 86: The evidence of Father Philip on this point is conclusive.
See Con to Barberini: Add. MS., 15,389, f. 196.]

[Footnote 87: He was in England at the time of Bassompierre's mission.]

[Footnote 88: Aff. Etran. Ang., t. 43.]

[Footnote 89: In a secret article of the treaty between France and England,
made in 1629, it was recognized by the King of France that it was
inadvisable that Henrietta should have a large French household. Aff.
Etran. Ang., t. 43.]

[Footnote 90: Aff. Etran. Ang., t. 43.]

[Footnote 91: Fontenay-Mareuil to Richelieu (apparently). "Vos actions sont
en telle veneration par tout le monde que le Roy de la Grande Bretagne
animé d'un si bon exemple s'est enfin resolu de ruiner la Cabale qui estoit
en sa Cour dont il estime que le Roy ni vous Monsieur ne serez pas marris
puis-qu'elle avoit esté fondée par M. de Chasteauneuf et sur les mesmes
desseins que celle de France très préjudiciables aux deux royaumes.... 14
April, 1633."--Aff. Etran, Ang., t. 45.]

[Footnote 92: Richelieu thought that Mme. de Chevreuse, swayed by her love
for Holland, induced Chateauneuf to act against Weston, whom Holland hoped
to supplant.]

[Footnote 93: This clique was considered "Puritan" as against the
"Protestantism" of Portland. See chap. IV.]

[Footnote 94: "Père Philippe qui possêde la conscience de la Reyne de la
Grande Bretagne est subject du roy son Mary et establi par luy de sorte
qu'il est impossible d'y prendre aucune confiance pour les interests de
France à laquelle il ne se tient point oblige."--Letters of
Fontenay-Mareuil, French Transcripts P.R.O.]

[Footnote 95: Her son James was born October 14th, 1633.]

[Footnote 96: "La Reyne de la Grande Bretagne ne fait que commencer aussy a
se mesler des affaires laquelle bienque son Mary layme extremement il fault
de l'humeur qu'il est quelle use de grandes maniers avec luy et quelle y
aille très doucement."--Letters of French Ambassador (Senneterre). May
24th, 1635. MS. Français, 15,993.]

[Footnote 97: "J'ay beaucoup loué et remercié la Reyne de la Grande
Bretagne de son election qui est un esprit qu'elle doive conserver à elle
pour prendre plus de part dans les affaires quelle n'a fait iusques
ici."--Letter of Senneterre, February, 1636. MS. Français, 15,993.

"Al futuro applica poco confidata tutta nel Re. Bisogna che prema più di
guadagnare li ministri dello Stato de quali può essere Padrona
volendo."--Con to Barberini, Aug. 25, 1636. Add. MS., 15,389, f. 196.]

[Footnote 98: "... La reyne d'Angletera qul prendra entierement
Vostre party sy vous luy donnez la liberté du chevalier de
Jars."--Fontenay-Mareuil to Richelieu. Aff. Etran. Ang., t. 45.]

[Footnote 99: MS. Français, 15,993.]

[Footnote 100: The Queen's Grand Almoner, Du Perron, was the intermediary
in this matter. Windbank's name is not mentioned in Du Perron's letters,
but there is little doubt he is intended. Aff. Etran. Ang., t. 46.]

[Footnote 101: Aff. Etran. Ang., t. 46]

[Footnote 102: Sir Robert Ayton]

[Footnote 103: William Habington.]



CHAPTER IV

THE QUEEN OF THE CATHOLICS

                        They knew not
  That what I motioned was of God; I knew
  From intimate impulse and therefore urged
  The Marriage on, that by occasions hence,
  I might begin Israel's deliverance,
  The work to which I was divinely called.

                                         JOHN MILTON


Among all the activities of Queen Henrietta Maria's life none deserves more
careful study than those connected with her work for her co-religionists in
England.

The French marriage of Charles I represented, in a measure, a compromise
between the hopes of the English Catholics and the fears of the English
Puritans. From the point of view of the latter an alliance with any
Catholic Princess was a misfortune; but, nevertheless, Henrietta was
regarded as a modified evil by those who had feared a Spanish Infanta.
Spain was the old enemy, the land which had sent out the Great Armada, and
which in every way had fostered the most militant and uncompromising
elements of English Catholicism; France, if unfortunately it had not
fulfilled the promise it had once given of becoming a Protestant country,
was Catholic in another and a far less rigid sense, and it was remembered
that Henrietta was the daughter of the man who had been at one time the
hope of the Reformers, and who, if he had deserted his faith with a
light-hearted cynicism not often to be paralleled, had found at the end
that the Mass which gained Paris for him could not save him from the knife
of the man who was believed to be the pupil of the Jesuits. The qualified
satisfaction which was general in England is well reflected in the
following paragraph which appeared in a newsletter when it was known that
the negotiations for the marriage were approaching completion:--

"The first tidings of this joyfull newes were welcome unto all except
Jezuited English who have not so much hope to accomplish their ambitious
projects, allwayes hurtfull to the good and tranquillity of this Kingdome
by this Marriage of France, as they had by that of Spaine, since all men
know who know any thing at all, how all true-hearted Frenchmen detest and
hate this cruell king-killing Ignatian order since the death and murther of
two Burbonian Henries kild by them and their accomplices."[104]

But, on the other hand, the substitution of a French for a Spanish Queen
was a severe blow to the English Catholics. These heroic men who, hiding
their heads "mid ignomy, death and tombs," had kept alive through years of
persecution the faith of their fathers, had acquired something of the
harshness and narrowness which belongs to a persecuted remnant. The more
liberal type of Catholicism prevalent in France was not congenial to
them,[105] and they had, moreover, good reason to be grateful to the House
of Austria. The King of Spain not only permitted English seminaries and
religious houses to be established in Spain and in the Low Countries, but
he even supported some of them with pensions, and during the negotiations
with James I for a matrimonial alliance he showed both his will and his
power to protect the English Catholics at home, where a peace of the Church
was then enjoyed which was long remembered in less happy times. All
persecution ceased, and at St. James's Palace a Catholic Chapel was seen in
course of building, designed for the use of the Spanish Queen who never
came.

It was not likely that the eyes of Richelieu,[106] which saw everything,
should fail to observe the unfortunate predilection of the English
Catholics for the enemies of France, and there is no doubt that one of the
reasons for which Henrietta was sent into England was to detach them from
this alliance. During the period of negotiations Richelieu wrote a friendly
letter to the Catholic body in England,[107] and the French ambassadors
were charged to do all in their power to win the confidence of its
principal members, and to combat the wiles of the Spaniards, who tried to
persuade them that the French had no true regard for religion.
Ville-aux-clercs, when he was in London, was on one occasion obliged to
attend a service at Westminster Abbey. He was careful to behave with the
utmost rudeness, in order to show the uncompromising character of a
Frenchman's Catholicism.[108] Tillières took great pains to conciliate the
chiefs of the English Catholics, and to persuade them that his master was
as good a Catholic as the King of Spain. But it was no easy task, and it
was not until Louis XIII had stayed the passage of an anti-Catholic law in
the English Parliament that they began to feel some confidence in him. Then
a letter of thanks was sent to Paris,[109] and even the Jesuits, who were
considered peculiarly pro-Spanish, wrote to express their desire for the
coming alliance. Matters were the more satisfactory inasmuch as William
Smith, who had recently been consecrated Bishop of Chalcedon, and who, in
the teeth of the Jesuits, claimed the jurisdiction of an ordinary in
England, was well known in France, where he had resided for many years in
the household of Richelieu. It was, moreover, with the same object that the
French Government insisted upon the promise to suspend the execution of the
recusancy laws as a _sine qua non_ of the marriage, "otherwise," wrote
Tillières frankly, "the English Catholics will be lost to France and
assured to Spain."[110] Thus Richelieu's action in this particular fits
into his general scheme of anti-Austrian policy, and he is cleared from any
suspicion that he was actuated by weak religious scruples in thus setting
himself against the Protestant prejudice of England.

Henrietta was probably not unconscious of the dubious reception which would
be afforded to her by her co-religionists, and her advisers were still more
alive to the necessity of her making a good impression upon the English
Catholics. At first all went well. Those who were unaware of the religious
revival which was taking place in France were surprised at the piety of
Bérulle (who was one of the leaders of the revival), and at the zeal of the
Bishop of Mende,[111] who, with great diplomacy, took care to interest
himself in the general affairs of his co-religionists in England. The young
Queen herself, who in Paris had not been remarkable for devotion, seemed on
entering the heretic country to be dowered with a new piety and zeal. She
showed great compassion for her Catholic subjects, and such devotion to her
religious duties that she heard Mass every day, even when she was on one of
the frequent progresses of the English Court, and on Sundays listened to a
sermon and attended Vespers, which was usually enlivened by instrumental
music. "Can such good things come out of Galilee?" was the wondering
question of the pro-Spanish English Catholic; and if he suspended his
ultimate judgment, he at least rejoiced for the time in the edifying
conduct of those whose presence was the guarantee of his peace.

Even some of the Protestants seemed softened. Henrietta, in her earlier
days, before sorrow deepened and hardened her character, was far from a
bigot, and indeed the daughter of Henry IV never had in her the true stuff
of fanaticism. When just after her marriage some one was rude enough to ask
her if she disliked Huguenots, she answered gently, "Why should I? My
father was one"; and some of Bérulle's enemies, "the ministers," presuming
on such girlish kindliness, boasted that in six months she would be at
their preachings. Others, less sanguine, contented themselves with admiring
the decorum of the services to which curiosity led them, and with praising
the outward regularity of the lives of the Oratorian Fathers. Thus the
Catholics had ground for hope, but not for exultation. "These are flowers
of hopes," wrote the cautious Bérulle, "but nothing but flowers and,
moreover, flowers surrounded by thorns. These are hopes, but they have need
of a greater maturity in the Queen and more persevering conduct on the part
of France."[112]

It was therefore the greater disappointment when the persecution of 1625
fell. Nor was it a slight and passing storm. Never, even in the days of
Edward VI or Elizabeth, had the Catholics been in such evil case, except
that the death penalty, to which the King had an invincible repugnance, was
not exacted.[113] But the most loyal of laymen, such as the Marquis of
Winchester, suffered in their goods, while the prisons became veritable
cloisters of religious. It is not surprising that the persecuted contrasted
the peace and security of the days of mere negotiations with Spain with the
misery brought about by a consummated marriage with France, or that
Richelieu and his emissaries in England ground their teeth with rage to see
those whom they had hoped to capture flung back again into the arms of His
Catholic Majesty.

Henrietta herself, though much distressed, did not despair. She had already
discovered that her husband was naturally inclined to mercy, and she knew
that persecution was to a great extent a financial expedient to fill the
empty coffers of the State. Young as she was, she understood the task to
which, religiously speaking, her marriage had called her,[114] for the
performance of which the papal dispensation had been granted, and of which
the importance had been impressed upon her by her mother, by Bérulle, and
by the Bishop of Mende, all of whom saw in her another Bertha who was to
effect a new conversion of England. Even in the dark days of April, 1626,
she did not falter. She was praying, she wrote to the Pope, who had
honoured her with a Brief, not only that she might stand firm in the true
religion, but that also she might "procure all the peace and comfort which
I can for the Catholics of the Kingdoms, hoping that the natural goodness
of the King my Lord, touched by a holy inspiration and by my ardent
prayers, will produce some sweet and favourable effect for their comfort.
And although up to now there has been little fruit of my endeavours, yet I
promise myself that my persevering constancy, aided by divine assistance,
will not always be useless to them."[115]

The first step towards a better state of things was the reconstruction of
the Queen's religious establishment which had been so abruptly broken up.
Charles was at first quite obdurate to the requests of the French
Government, and refused not only to receive a Bishop as Grand Almoner,[116]
but even to entertain the idea of the establishment of a religious Order in
England. But in this case, as in many others, he was talked over. Years
before, in Spain, he had been acquainted with some Capuchin Fathers who had
impressed him by their good sense and piety. The Order was a humble one,
not likely to mix in politics, and eventually he intimated that he would be
willing to receive some of its members in the capacity of chaplains to his
wife.

But difficulties arose. The two Fathers of the Oratory, who were still in
England, had been drawn into the intrigues of Chateauneuf, and Father
Philip was considered almost an enemy of France. The Capuchins, on the
other hand, were under the protection of Fontenay-Mareuil, and they quite
expected to see the members of the rival congregation expelled and the path
left clear for themselves.

It was, therefore, a grave disappointment, when, on their arrival in
England, they found that the Queen had no intention of changing her
confessor, of whose long-headed Scotch prudence she had a just
appreciation. The poor Capuchins, with a certain Father Leonard at their
head, were subjected to considerable annoyances from the Chateauneuf clique
and the Fathers of the Oratory,[117] who were more men of the world than
they, did not scruple to show a refined contempt for them. So uncomfortable
were they that but for the support of Fontenay-Mareuil they would almost
have returned to France.

But they were cheered by the courtesy of the Queen. Henrietta, in spite of
her refusal to submit to their direction, received them with all kindness,
and settled them in her own establishment at Somerset House, where, to
their great satisfaction, they were permitted to wear the religious habit.
They were indeed simple men, so simple that she showed her wisdom in
seeking a confessor elsewhere than among them; but they were zealous and
disinterested, and, if at times they attempted to impose upon the ungodly
Protestant by a profession of greater austerity than that actually
practised, there was no sham in their labours among the sick and poor of
plague-stricken London, or in their devotion to their religious
duties.[118] They, on their side, became much attached to Henrietta, and it
is to the pen of one of them, Father Cyprien de Gamache, who in his old age
wrote his memoirs of the English mission, that we owe many curious
particulars of the Queen's life.[119]

With the Capuchins came a more distinguished person, who shared with them
for a while the dislike of Chateauneuf's friends.

Jacques de Nowell du Perron, a nephew of the famous Cardinal of that name,
who had had much to do with the conversion of the Queen's father, came to
London as the successor of the Bishop of Mende, but no two men could have
been less alike, and perhaps du Perron was selected because Richelieu had
learned by experience that "surtout point de zèle" was a sound maxim in
dealing with heretics. Certainly the second Grand Almoner of Henrietta
Maria was as much liked as the first had been detested. A man of the
softest manners, "neutral in every question whatsoever,"[120] as a stronger
spirit said of him with a touch of contempt, he knew not only how to keep
the favour of the French authorities who had sent him to England, but how
to win that of Charles, whom he charmed by his flow of interesting talk,
and of the Protestant public, who so respected the regularity of his life
and the moderation of his conduct, that even on the eve of the Civil War he
was regarded "as among the hated the least so."[121] There were moments
when his task of serving many masters was difficult, as when his courtier's
soul was vexed because, by obeying Henrietta's commands to officiate at a
service of welcome to her mother,[122] he offended his patrons in Paris;
but in the main his conduct met with its due reward. It was no small
tribute to his tact and prudence that he so far obliterated from the mind
of Charles the memory of the Bishop of Mende that he permitted him, in
1637, to accept the Bishopric of Angoulême without forfeiting his position
as Grand Almoner of the Queen. He went off to France to be consecrated, and
returned to England with all the dignity of episcopal rank.

It fell to the lot of this courtly ecclesiastic to officiate at one of the
most picturesque ceremonies of Henrietta's London life. Among the unkept
stipulations of the marriage contract was a provision for the building of a
chapel for the Queen's use. Henrietta, at her first coming, had been
obliged to content herself with a small and mean room in which her
chaplains, as best they might, celebrated divine service. It was not until
1632[123] that she had so won her husband's heart as to wring from him by
prayers and caresses, and sometimes even by tears, permission to build a
church for her Capuchins, which should be at once a memorial of her
religious zeal and a thank-offering for her married happiness, which now
had been crowned by the birth of her little son.

On September the 14th the foundation-stone was laid. The site of the new
building, which was the tennis courtyard of Somerset House, was fitted up
as a temporary church with tapestries for walls and stuffs of great price
for roof. A large and brilliant company, numbering at least two thousand
persons, was present, while at the beautifully decked altar stood M. du
Perron to sing a Mass, which was accompanied by rare voices and choice
instrumental music, and at which the attendant ceremonies were so
magnificent that a Frenchman who happened to be present confessed[124] that
nothing more splendid could be seen at Notre-Dame de Paris, even when a
King of France honoured that cathedral with his presence. The Mass ended,
Henrietta stepped forward, handed by her brother's ambassador, M. de
Fontenay-Mareuil, to whom the establishment of the Capuchins was so largely
due. A trowel delicately fringed with velvet was offered to her, together
with mortar served in a silver-gilt bowl. Thrice she threw the mortar on to
the stone of foundation, which was then lowered into its place, bearing on
a plate an inscription telling how she, the Queen of England and the
daughter of France, had founded this temple for the honour of Catholicism
and for the use of her servants the Capuchin Fathers.

This was one of Henrietta's brightest days, in which she tasted the joy her
disappointed life knew so seldom, of seeing a happy result of her works and
prayers. It began by a devout confession and reception of the Eucharist. It
ended with cannon and fireworks and every sign of public rejoicing. So
cordial seemed the attitude of the London populace that the rosiest hopes
for the future were entertained, specially by the French,[125] who would
have welcomed the conversion of England by a French Queen as a delicate
triumph, not only over the heretic, but over the Spaniard.[126] These
sanguine persons did not go about in the streets and taverns of the city to
hear, under the official rejoicings, the curses, "not loud but deep," of
the Puritan citizens.

The Queen's workmen, whom she encouraged by kind words and good pay, must
have worked with energy, for by the middle of December in the same year the
church was ready for use. It was modelled on that begun for the Spanish
Infanta at St. James's, though, perhaps in view of possible developments,
it was of a larger size than the original. The opening ceremonies were
comparable in splendour to those of the foundation. Many Protestants were
attracted thither by curiosity to admire its beautiful furnishings, among
which perhaps was already to be seen the splendid specimen of the art of
Rubens, which is known to have adorned the high altar in later days. Even
the King came in to see the great attraction, a construction about forty
feet high, which the ingenuity of a young Roman architect who happened to
be in London had fashioned into a representation of Paradise, wherein,
guarded by sculptured angels and prophets, and blazing with innumerable
lights, reposed the Sacred Host. Taking into account these splendours, it
is not perhaps surprising that those who on this happy day turned their
eyes toward the kneeling figure of the royal foundress saw stealing down
her cheeks the happy tears of an emotion she could not restrain. She had
indeed cause for self-congratulation, for already the hopes which had
cheered her in her dark days were beginning to be realized.

Henrietta never laid aside the devout habits which Bérulle had taught her,
and which--no doubt with much anxiety in his mind--he again inculcated in
1627 in a pious letter which he wrote and to which the Queen-Mother put her
name.[127] She was indeed sometimes inclined to lie in bed in the morning
so late that Mass could not be said till midday, but her excellent husband,
who desired her to be as precise in her religious duties as he was in his
own, was not slow to chide gently this laxity, so that her regularity of
attendance became the admiration of all. At each festival she received the
Sacrament of Penance, and communicated with such devotion that her fervour
astonished not only her fellow-worshippers, but her spiritual advisers. In
matters of fasting she was very strict, only asking for a dispensation when
there was real need, in spite of the specious advice of her heretic
physician Mayerne, who urged her to take meat on Fridays and Saturdays, "an
indulgence," as a Frenchman justly remarked, "which would be of little
account in France, but in England, and in the person of the Queen,
appearances must be kept up."[128]

To all these virtues she added a zeal for her faith which, if still checked
by the girlish levity which easily turned from religious as from political
matters, was sufficiently urgent both to champion her faith in Protestant
circles and to plead for her oppressed co-religionists, so that with the
growth of her influence over her husband grew their peace and prosperity.
It is true that for a year or two after the expulsion of the French the
persecution continued, and was, particularly in Scotland, at one time very
fierce,[129] so that it was noted with malicious satisfaction that the
Queen fell into her premature travail on the very day that her husband had
signed a decree against the Catholics of his northern kingdom; but it so
quickly and thoroughly abated that in 1633 a Roman correspondent in London
was able to declare that never before had Catholics been less
molested.[130] Not only were priests permitted to live undisturbed in the
capital, but English Catholics were allowed to attend the chapels of the
Queen and the ambassadors, a privilege which Richelieu had vainly
endeavoured to win for them at the time of the royal marriage, and which
the King had angrily refused to the Queen's entreaties only a year or two
before. "I permit you your religion," he had said to her on that occasion,
"with your Capuchins and others. I permit ambassadors and their retinue,
but the rest of my subjects I will have them live that I profess and my
father before me." The Catholics were so encouraged by the lenity now shown
that in the course of this same year, on the occasion of Charles'
coronation in Scotland, they presented to him a petition pleading for
toleration and urging him to follow the example of his father-in-law, Henry
the Great, who, by granting religious liberty, had won for himself the
title of Pater Patriæ et Pacis Restitutor.[131]

That the softening of Charles' heart was due to his wife is indisputable,
though her unfortunate hostility to Portland prevented her from utilizing
the influence of that statesman, who was a Catholic at heart.[132] "The
Queen is not unmindful to press the Catholic cause with the King as often
as opportunity permits," writes a Catholic reporter[133] as early as 1632.
The mere turning over of the State papers of these years reveals ample
evidence of her activity. A priest who had languished seven years in the
Clink prison, Catholic prisoners at York, another priest who for five years
had lain in Newgate, these are some of the recipients of her mercy, taken
from the records of little more than a year. "A great Princess," wrote Du
Perron of her in a letter which he dispatched to Rome in 1635, "by whom
religion exists in this Kingdom, and who is the refuge of the poor
Catholics, who, thanks to God and by the clemency of the King, whom this
virtuous Princess has inclined in our favour, have enjoyed during the four
years I have been here a greater liberty than has ever been seen since the
change of religion, and which we hope will continually increase, provided
that it please God to preserve the King and to favour the good designs of
our Mistress."[134]

In London Catholicism became almost fashionable. The Queen's new chapel at
Somerset House,[135] where an urbane sermon by the eloquent du Perron might
sometimes be heard, was often visited by Protestants, of whom some, like
the astrologer Lilly, were drawn by curiosity, while others came from more
mixed motives. The Capuchin Fathers and their rivals the Oratorians
received many visitors who came to discuss religious matters, not a few of
whom were inclined by the engaging arguments of their hosts to abjure the
heresy of their birth, so that little by little an imposing list of
converts was compiled.[136] Sometimes the good Capuchins would open their
monastery to the Protestant public, and, arranging it a little more
ascetically[137] than usual, to impress the heretics, would thus help on
the cause of the faith among those who flocked to see them as if, says
Father Cyprien pathetically, they had been Indians, Malays, or savages. At
the chapels of the ambassadors and at Somerset House English sermons were
preached for the edification of the English Catholics and of the more
interesting Protestant visitors. Dispensations from the action of the
recusancy laws were given by the Crown in such numbers as to alarm the
Puritans.[138] The recusants were relieved of part[139] of the financial
burden which the law bound upon them, and, above all, it began to be
whispered that the King, whose devotion to his wife was well known, was
beginning to look with favour upon the Catholics. His objection to them had
always been political rather than religious, and was based upon his
suspicion of their loyalty and upon his dread of the deposing power claimed
by the Pope. Henrietta's constant endeavour was to disabuse her husband's
mind of this, perhaps not unreasonable, prejudice. She met with fair
success, so that a Catholic writer felt able to describe Charles as a
"Prince of most milde and sweet disposition," who suffered the partial
execution of the recusancy laws rather from political and financial than
from religious reasons, and whose "great ornaments of God and Nature doe in
a manner foretell that one day he shall restore this country to its former
happiness, and himself become the most glorious and most renowned Monarch
that ever did governe among us."[140] There was, of course, only one way by
which this happy consummation could be attained, and already some sanguine
spirits were beginning to think of another and happier Pole reconciling
England anew to the Holy See.

And there were other and perhaps more solid grounds for hopes in the
changing character of the Anglican Church, which about this time was
attracting great attention among a certain school of Catholics. The results
of the Elizabethan settlement were becoming apparent, and the two great
parties, known then as Protestant and Puritan, now as High Church and Low
Church, were beginning to stand out clearly. Liberal-minded Catholics, some
of them converts from the English Universities, were learning, what the
narrower type of Seminarist refused to recognize, the wide gulf which
yawned between an Anglican "Protestant" and a continental Sectary. Already
in the days of James a French priest[141] of Ville-aux-clercs' train was
surprised by the decorum of the liturgy at Westminster Abbey, and roundly
abused as liars the English Catholics of the Continent who had drawn fancy
pictures of Anglican services. The religious revival, with which the name
of Laud is associated, emphasized every Catholic element yet remaining in
the Church of England. It was barely a century since the schism. Bérulle,
living in London or at the Court, regarding all with unfriendly and
prejudiced eyes, might be surprised at the total absence of all sign or
memory of the old religion. But had a man of sympathy gone about among the
people, or sought the lonely valleys of Yorkshire and the remote villages
of Devon and Cornwall, he would have told another tale of lingering
superstitions, of ancient customs which had their root in Catholic
practices. Such a man as Bishop Andrewes, who died in old age in 1626, and
who was the master of Laud, is a witness that the Church revival of the
seventeenth century was no more a complete innovation than that of the
nineteenth century, which is associated with the names of the Tractarians,
to which, in many respects, it bears so close a resemblance. But under the
patronage of the King and the Archbishop the movement developed rapidly.
Altars were set up, decked in Catholic fashion, in most of the cathedrals
and in many parish churches; Latin services were read at Oxford and
Cambridge; books were published, such as Anthony Stafford's _Female Glory_,
which might have been written by Catholic pens; a desire for a return to
Catholic discipline, of which perhaps the most interesting manifestation
was the Protestant nunnery at Little Gidding, was apparent in earnest
Churchmen; and, above all, not only did a considerable number of
conversions take place, but some of those who remained in the Anglican
fold, like Bishop Goodman of Gloucester and Bishop Montague of Chichester,
became enamoured of the haunting dream of corporate reunion. It is not
surprising that Catholics and Puritans alike should have seen in the whole
movement a tendency to a reversal of the Reformation settlement, and should
equally have failed to distinguish between the staunch Anglicans, of whom
Laud was the leader, and the advance-guard which really was looking to
Rome. The Queen herself believed that Laud[142] was a good Catholic at
heart, and there is no doubt that overtures were made to him by Catholics,
while the more liberal-minded of that communion, recalling to the Pope the
example of his great predecessor St. Gregory, who "did yeeld somewhat to
the Britans before he could work their conversion," urged upon him the
expediency of meeting half-way those erring children who already believed
"the Pope of Rome to be cheefe and supreame Pastor," and of a little
condescending "unto their weakness, whome unhappy errors have made
infirme."[143]

Urban VIII, to whom this appeal was addressed, was one of those decorous
ecclesiastics whom the counter-reformation had substituted for the more
picturesque figures of Renaissance Rome. He had a kindness for Henrietta,
whom he had seen when she was a baby and he was Nuncio in the French
capital, on which occasion the Queen-Mother had replied to his courteous
augury that the little Princess would one day be a great Queen in the
prophetic words, "That will be when you are Pope." He felt a real interest
in England, which he had shown in a somewhat equivocal way when, incited by
Bérulle, he had urged France and Spain in 1628 to unite in attacking the
faithless King of England. Circumstances, however, were now changed, and he
was anxious to commend himself to Charles and Henrietta. His nephew
Francesco Barberini, the Cardinal Protector of England, who shared with him
the considerable, if misdirected, artistic taste of the family,[144] was
equally alive to the opportunities of the hour, and he showed the King of
England from time to time such attentions as were most acceptable to a
monarch who was not only the patron of Rubens and Van Dyck, but was himself
one of the best judges of art in Europe. Barberini allowed a large number
of statues and pictures to be exported from Rome to England, while he sent
over as gifts choice pictures painted by Leonardo and Correggio and other
masters of the Renaissance, together with a Bacchus by the hand of the
still living Guido Reni, "understanding that His Majesty was a great
admirer of such curiosities."[145] Finally, he induced the haughty Bernini
to sculpture the busts of the King of England and of his Queen, in which
task the great sculptor is said to have read a tragic fate in the long,
melancholy lines of the countenance of Charles Stuart.

But the more serious results of the intercourse between Rome and
England--results which had no small influence on future events--touched
another side of Henrietta's dealings with the English Catholics.

The history of the Catholic Church in England, from the Reformation
onwards, is a curious mixture of heroic endurance and of sordid squabbles
among those who, in the face of a common enemy, should have shown above all
an united front. The disputes which raged between the secular clergy and
the religious Orders on the subject of Episcopal jurisdiction were at an
acute stage when Henrietta came into England, and in the course of the next
few years the feeling became so bitter on both sides that the seculars did
not scruple to accuse the Jesuits, the protagonists of the regulars, of
heinous crimes, such as the instigation of the Powder Plot,[146] while
these latter, in their turn, are said to have taken their revenge by
disseminating information important to the Government which led to the
banishment of the Bishop of Chalcedon.[147]

It was only natural that each party should desire the favour of the young
Queen. The Jesuits, who commanded the larger following among the English
Catholics, were the more objectionable to the Government and the nation,
who considered them meddlers in matters of State, and who remembered, with
a vividness not decreased by the Powder Plot, the career and the writings
of Father Robert Parsons. Charles' dislike of them[148] was inherited from
his father, who on one occasion broke off a conversation most favourable to
the Catholics to assert that never should a daughter-in-law of his be under
Jesuit direction. Another person whose opinion was likely to weigh with
Henrietta, Father Bérulle, had so Protestant a hatred of the Society that
in 1628 he used his powerful influence to prevent the dispatch to England
of a Grand Almoner[149] who was believed to regard it with favour. The
daughter of Henry IV must surely have felt an antipathy as strong as that
of any Stuart for those whom many held responsible for her father's murder.
In short, the secular clergy had some reason for hope, even setting aside
the fact that the Jesuits were the soul of the pro-Spanish party which
dominated English Catholicism, while they, under their pro-French Bishop,
had a certain leaning to France, of which they were prepared to make the
most now that a French Queen sat upon the throne of England.

It was a blow to these worthy men that they were not permitted to serve the
Queen's chapel, for which office they possessed, certainly in their own
eyes, every qualification.[150] It was a greater blow when, owing doubtless
to the machinations of the Jesuits, the Bishop of Chalcedon was
banished.[151] But, after all, this untoward event took place while the
Queen's influence was still small. As it grew, and with it the general
prosperity of the Catholics, the secular clergy took heart again.

Henrietta cared little or nothing for Bishop Smith personally, and his
connection with Richelieu was by this time small recommendation to her. But
it galled her pride that whereas there had been a Bishop in England on her
arrival now there was none, and she probably believed, what even the
cautious Du Perron on one occasion admitted, that the regulars were jealous
of her as a Frenchwoman, and unwilling that she should have too great
honour as a mother in Israel. It was whispered among the secular clergy
that the Queen was "all for the Bishop and his jurisdiction" in spite of
the efforts of the Jesuits to win over not only her, but Father Philip.
Their hopes were not unfounded. Henrietta was so far roused as to write a
strongly worded letter to the Pope on behalf of the Bishop, who was out of
favour not only with the English Government, but with the authorities at
Rome. She begged the Holy Father to restore "this good father to his
children,"[152] and she entreated him, in words that are no obscure hit at
the Jesuits and their friends the English Catholics, not to allow so good a
prelate to be oppressed by those who regarded their own interest rather
than the good of religion and the union of Catholics. To strengthen her
appeal she dispatched a letter at the same time to her brother's ambassador
in Rome, asking him[153] to use his influence in the matter. She knew that
the Bishop was a _persona grata_ at the French Court, where his
elevation to the Cardinalate was at one time desired.

Henrietta's intervention effected nothing, and Richard Smith lived and died
in an exile which was due at least as much to his fellow-Catholics as to
his Protestant oppressors. But in the year following she was engaged in
negotiations with the Papacy as fruitful as these had been abortive.

In 1633 a Scotch gentleman, by name Sir Robert Douglas,[154] appeared in
Rome. He was a cousin of the Earl of Angus, a noted Scotch Catholic, and he
was the bearer of letters from that nobleman to the Pope. But there were
other and greater people responsible for his presence. Behind Angus stood
the Queen of England, and behind the Queen stood her husband the King,
though, as the emissary carefully explained, the latter could not openly
appear in the affair, as he was not yet reconciled to the Catholic Church.

Douglas was one of those sanguine Catholics who believed Charles'
conversion to be a matter of a short delay, and that then the whole nation,
weary of heresy, would be only too glad to walk contentedly in the path to
heaven in obedience to the Holy See. He drew a rosy picture of these
prospects and of the Queen's virtues and piety as he proceeded to unfold
the object of his mission, which was to induce the Pope to bestow a
Cardinal's hat upon a subject of the King of England. He was even kind
enough to spare the Holy Father the trouble of selection by indicating a
certain George Con, a Scotch gentleman in the service of Barberini, as a
worthy recipient of the honour. The nationality of this person, he hastened
to point out, was all in his favour. Not only was the King's partiality for
his own countrymen well known, but the English Catholics were so torn
asunder by their internal feuds that they would welcome the elevation of a
Scotchman which would not give rise to the jealousies which would
inevitably attend the promotion of a member of either of the rival parties.
Such at least was the view of the Scotch envoy. It would be interesting to
hear the comments of the English Catholics, who a few years earlier had
described their northern brethren as almost barbarians, unable to speak the
English tongue, and in every way inferior to themselves.[155]

There is no doubt that Henrietta's heart was much set upon this project,
nor did she ever relax her efforts in Con's behalf until his death. It is
possible that she felt the danger, which Douglas pointed out to the Pope,
of her position as an uncrowned Queen in case of her husband's death, and
that she thought that a Cardinal devoted to her service would be a support
in such a strait. It is improbable that at this time she had ever set eyes
on her candidate, though she had heard accounts which were not unfounded of
his goodness and learning, and she, as well as her husband, no doubt was
aware that he had given a pleasing proof of judiciously mingled loyalty and
piety by writing a sympathetic biography of Charles' grandmother, Mary of
Scotland.[156] But beyond any personal feeling, Henrietta always believed,
though why it is a little difficult to say, that the creation of a Cardinal
who was a native of Great Britain would help forward in the highest degree
the cause of the Catholic Church in England. Thus she wrote to Cardinal
Barberini at this time and thus she wrote several years later to the Pope,
expressing herself on the latter occasion very strongly and assuring the
Holy Father that by complying with her wishes in the matter he would not
only oblige her personally, but would give the greatest possible impetus to
the cause of religion in England.[157]

The King's attitude is more difficult to determine, but there seems no
reason to distrust Douglas' assertion that the project had his royal
support and concurrence. Such intrigues were indeed only too congenial to
his tortuous mind. Nor is the knight's statement without corroboration.
Another Scot, the Earl of Stirling, who as Sir William Alexander had won a
considerable reputation both as poet and statesman, and who had formerly
been concerned in certain cryptic negotiations between James I and the Holy
See, wrote to Rome[158] expressing his pleasure that the son was following
in his father's footsteps, and urging Con's candidature on the ground that
his elevation would be a matter of great satisfaction to the King.

It might be thought that the Roman authorities would welcome with
_empressement_ an emissary who came under such distinguished patronage.
But, as a matter of fact, the reception accorded to Sir Robert Douglas was
distinctly cool. The King of England's conduct had not been such as to
inspire confidence, and the Jesuits in Rome and elsewhere were still busily
representing him "as the greatest persecutor that ever was."[159] It was
suggested that his friendly attitude to the Papacy was only a ruse to
secure the restoration of the Palatinate to his sister's husband. Even the
Queen was not regarded with great favour. It was believed in certain
quarters that she was rather indifferent to Catholic interests, an
impression which may have arisen partly from the favour which she showed to
a Puritan clique, of which the Earl of Holland was the principal
member,[160] and partly from her acquiescence in her husband's wish that
their children should receive Anglican baptism.[161] Perhaps the Pope and
Cardinal Barberini did not share this view, as they had read with great
interest an account of the laying of the foundation-stone of the new chapel
at Somerset House, which the judicious Du Perron had written to a
compatriot in Rome, who with equal tact passed it on to the Holy
Father.[162]

But there is no doubt that the Queen's insistent requests for the creation
of a Cardinal did her no service, either now or later, with Urban VIII and
his nephews. Many surmises were rife in Rome as to Douglas and his mission.
He might be an agent of the secular clergy. The whole thing might be a
deep-laid plan of Richelieu to secure the Cardinalate for his creature the
Bishop of Chalcedon, who was certainly an English subject, and on whose
behalf the Queen of England had written only a year earlier. There seems to
have been no intention of granting Henrietta's request, and the kind
letters which the Pope wrote to her and to Father Philip, saying how
pleased he was to hear of their piety and virtue, were more lavish of
compliments than of promises.

Nevertheless Douglas' mission was not unsuccessful. The Pope talked over
English affairs with him freely, and the result was that in the spring of
1634 Gregorio Panzani set out for England.

Panzani was a priest of the Italian Oratory, and his ostensible mission in
England was to heal the long-standing feud between the secular clergy and
the religious Orders, and to remedy certain irregularities of morals and
discipline which specially affected the younger religious and the London
clergy who were unable to resist the seductions of heretical society. It is
probable that the Pope and Cardinal Barberini desired these ends. It is
certain that they saw in the state of affairs a convenient cloak to cover
different and more important designs.

For Panzani was not in London without the connivance of the King and the
express desire of the Queen, who had arranged the matter with her husband.
"I have no objection," said Charles, "as long as things are done quietly
and matters of State are not meddled with; but I do not wish it said that
the Pope has sent an agent to the King of England."[163]

This was said, of course, and perhaps not altogether to the dissatisfaction
of Panzani and those who sent him. Nevertheless he behaved with great
discretion, and was liked by everybody, except the Jesuits, to whose
pretensions he was greatly opposed, and whose ill opinion was an advantage
to him rather than otherwise in dealing with the King and the people. On
the advice of the sage Father Philip he refused to express any opinion on
the thorny question of the lawfulness of taking the oath of allegiance[164]
to the King, thus following the example of the Capuchin Fathers, who were
wont to tell inquirers that they knew nothing of the matter, and that it
would be well to seek other advisers; altogether so judicious was his
conduct that he was described as "a person greatly to be esteemed for his
many vertues and religious life and great zeale and industry for the
advancem^t of the Catholick cause in this Country."[165] He was able,
towards the end of his stay, to do the Catholics a notable service by
persuading the King to dismiss the pursuivants, the most odious instruments
of the recusancy laws, comparable to the familiars of the Spanish
Inquisition, and to leave the prosecution of recusants in the hands of the
justices of the peace.

About this time the hopes of the Catholics were rising high, both at home
and in the Eternal City. They believed, with touching simplicity, that the
wise policy of the King had almost destroyed the hated sect of the
Puritans, "which formerly was stronger."[166] The centenary of the schism
was not allowed to pass without meaning allusions. From the pulpit of the
Queen's chapel at Somerset House, Du Perron commented on the occasion with
even more than his wonted suavity. Continual accounts were sent to Rome of
the mildness of the King, of the changing character of the Church of
England, and, above all, of the piety and zeal of the Queen. She was
described as "a Princess on whom God and nature have bestowed most rare
gifts," whose "sweete and vertuous carriage, her religious zeale and
constant devotions have purchased unto herselfe love and admiration from
all the Court and Kingdome, and unto the Catholique Religion (which she
piously pfesseth) great respect and honor. She is," added the writer in a
glow of enthusiasm, "Una beata de Casa, for whose sake Heaven, I hope, doth
intend many blessings towards our Country."[167] Cardinal Barberini
rewarded these shining qualities by writing flattering letters to
Henrietta, and by sending to her some relics of an obscure Roman lady named
Martina, whose martyred body had recently been dug up in an ancient church
dedicated to her memory.

Nor were Panzani's accounts less satisfactory; the King received him with
great kindness, and openly expressed his regret for the schism between the
Churches. "I would rather have lost my hand than it had happened," he said
on one occasion. He showed an unexpected reverence for relics, and much
interest in a remarkable book[168] written by a liberal-minded Catholic,
Father Santa Clara, of the Order of S. Francis, which foreshadowed the
famous "Tract 90" of later days. "The book pleases the King and some of the
nobles of this Kingdom very much,"[169] wrote the envoy, and he begged on
this ground that it might not be condemned at Rome, where (as well as in
certain Catholic circles in England) its liberality had given offence. Nor
were others more backward than the King. These were the days of the hopes
of reunion, at which Santa Clara's book had not obscurely glanced; the days
in which the appeal to the Pope, described above, was drawn up. Panzani was
less sanguine than some of the English Catholics, and, in particular, seems
to have appreciated Laud's real attitude towards the Church of Rome.[170]
But he had much to tell of interesting conversations on religious subjects
with Windbank, who assured him that the Jesuits and the Puritans were the
only real obstacle in the path of unity, and with Anglican clergy of
advanced views such as Bishop Montagu, who appeared a little surprised that
the Roman ecclesiastic did not agree very warmly to his assertion that
there could be no doubt of the validity of his Orders.

And the Holy See was to have another proof of Henrietta's zeal and of her
husband's compliance. It was not enough that an agent of the Pope should
dwell in London; an agent of the Queen of England was to go to Rome, and in
dispatching him she was to realize a long-cherished wish.

The first person selected for this delicate post was a gentleman named
Brett, who died on his journey to Italy. He was succeeded by a Scotchman,
Sir William Hamilton, brother of the Earl of Abercorn, who arrived in Rome
in the early summer of 1636. The Queen had given him a letter of
introduction to Barberini, which ensured him a good reception at the Papal
Court, thus described in a private letter:--

"Last Monday Sir William Hamilton had his first audience of his Holiness
who receaved him with very greate signes of joy, he is exceeding well liked
of here by all and indeed I think he will give as good satisfaction as any
that could have been sent from England. Cardl. Barberini hath presented him
with tow very faire horses for his coache. He keeps correspondence with the
Secretarye of State Winebanck ... and useth F. Jhon the Benedictine his
meanes to conveye these letters, but this must be kept secrett to yourself
only."[171]

It appears that the Queen was obliged to exercise a good deal of pressure
before her husband would consent to the establishment of this agency. Blind
as Charles was to the dangers surrounding him on all sides, he may well
have been aware of some of the difficulties attendant on a course of action
which led to such communication between an English Secretary of State and
an agent accredited to the Court of Rome.

The success which attended these first bold attempts to establish relations
between the Holy See and the Court of England encouraged further efforts.
It was felt that Panzani, after all, had obvious disadvantages for the post
which, nevertheless, he had filled with such promising results. He was an
Italian, and foreigners were not liked in the British Isles. He could talk
no English, and this was a drawback to one whose work was, in a sense,
missionary. He had done his part in spying out the land. He must now yield
his place to a successor, who, not handicapped by race and language, would
be able to reap the fields already ripe to harvest.

That successor was none other than the candidate of the King and the Queen
for the Cardinalate, George Con, the Scot, Canon of S. John Lateran in
Rome, who arrived in England in the early part of 1636.

In a sense, no better appointment could have been made. The new envoy was a
singularly fascinating person, whose long residence in the country which
was still the intellectual and artistic centre of Europe had added an
urbane culture to the prudence and moderation which were the gifts of his
Scottish birth. Less opposed to the Jesuits than Panzani, he was better
able to deal with the pro-Spanish English Catholics, who still had a
lurking distrust of the Queen, while he was too wise to be drawn into their
schemes. A scholar and a courtier, he knew how to commend himself to the
Protestants of the Court, and, above all, to the King, who evinced a real
liking for him. "I hope," said the envoy to him upon one occasion, "that my
being a good servant to the Pope and to Cardinal Barberini will not
prejudice me with your Majesty." Charles quickly gave him his hand, and
said earnestly, "No, Giorgio, no, always be assured of this."[172] The
Queen's feeling to him was even warmer. Indeed, it may be said that George
Con took his place among the little group of her personal friends. His
Scotch birth was no less a recommendation to her than to Charles himself,
for she so well remembered the ancient tie between her own land and the
northern kingdom that she was wont to show an injudicious partiality, which
did not tend to her popularity in England, for those who came from beyond
the Tweed. She was prejudiced in his favour before his arrival, and she
found him even more pious and charming than she had anticipated, so that
both she and the King gradually received him to such intimacy and
confidence that he seemed almost like one of the royal household.

It is not surprising that, under the spell of this fascinating personality,
Henrietta's Catholic zeal should have attained to a fervour unknown before,
which annoyed and alarmed even her own Protestant servants, such as Sir
Theodore Mayerne, who expressed his views on the matter to Con himself. The
envoy, indeed, had come at a fortunate moment. Already Portland was dead,
and the Queen was beginning to tread the path of influence and intrigue.
She found in him not only a friend who warmly encouraged her efforts, but
an efficient helper in her schemes, for what had become, in her own words,
her "strongest passion, the advancement of the Catholic religion in this
country."[173] Moreover, he showed himself a true friend by attempting to
correct the opinion which was rife in Rome as well as in France, that the
quiet enjoyed by the Catholics was due rather to political reasons than to
her influence.[174] Perhaps he had some success; certainly prayers were
offered for her in Rome, and a beautiful golden heart studded with gems,
which she sent by the hands of one of her Capuchin Fathers to the Holy
House of Loretto, was looked upon in papal circles "as the pledge of the
greatness of the devout and pious heart"[175] that was doing so much for
the Catholics of England.

Con's dispatches are written in much the same strain as those of Panzani.
They tell of kindness, of religious sympathy, of even greater royal favour,
of the King's evident sympathy with Catholicism--how on one occasion he
said, "I, too, am a Catholic," how on another his talk with the Queen on
religious subjects was such that it would hardly be credited at Rome; of
the success which attended the distribution among the ladies of the Court
of the pretty religious trifles such as rosaries and pictures, which the
care of Cardinal Barberini had sent over; of the Queen's delight in a cross
sent to her by the Pope--how she always wore it, and how she said that it
was the most precious thing she possessed; of the favour shown to Father
Sancta Clara at Court, and by Windbank--how it had even been proposed that
he should preach a sermon in the Queen's chapel about the anniversary of
the Powder Plot, "to exculpate the Catholics from treason against Princes";
how even the Jesuits acknowledged that never since the days of the
negotiation for the Spanish match had the Catholics enjoyed such peace.
Nevertheless, Con was too sagacious not to be able to read in some measure
the signs of the times. "God only knows how long this calm will last," he
wrote.[176]

It was unfortunate that a person who seemed so admirably fitted for his
post should have been obliged to relinquish his task half done. But the
rigours of the northern climate told so severely on a constitution long
accustomed to the suns of Italy that in 1639 Con was obliged to think of
turning his steps southward, for not even the distinguished attentions he
received in his sickness from the King, the Queen, and the nobility availed
to cure him. He reached Rome, but he only recrossed the Alps to die before
he could place on his head the Cardinal's hat, which had been so much
striven for. On his death-bed he thought of Henrietta, and begged Cardinal
Barberini, who was by his side, to send her a little picture of the Virgin
as a recognition of his gratitude for her kindness, and as a memorial of
their friendship.

But already the shadows of the Civil War were beginning to close about the
Queen. The bright hopes which had marked the days of Con's sojourn in
England were becoming haunting fears, which, in their turn, were to give
place to feelings as like despair as such natures as Henrietta's can know.

It was probably a sad surprise to the Queen when, on the eve of the war,
she discovered the intensity of the hatred with which her faith was
regarded by a large section of her husband's subjects. Sagacious foreigners
knew something of it. "The Puritans hate the Catholics as much as the
Devil,"[177] wrote Tillières frankly as early as 1624. But in the Queen's
Court all mention of such ill-bred persons and factions was avoided, unless
some wit cracked a joke at their expense. It is true that a few of the
great nobles were Puritans, but during the years of Charles' triumph their
opinions were expressed with moderation, and most of the courtiers appeared
rather inclined to the fashionable Protestant variety of faith which the
King, the Ministers, and the higher clergy professed. The real strength of
Puritanism was in the lower middle-class, a section of the community with
which the Queen was not likely to come in personal contact, and which,
partly perhaps for this very reason, she was never able to conquer. Her
refusal to be crowned with her husband gave bitter offence, and was to cost
her dear in the future. Discontented spirits muttered to themselves that
the King might be murdered as Henry IV had been, "and then the Queen might
mar all."[178] When in 1629 prayers were offered in the Church for the
birth of an heir to the throne, scarcely a man could be found to answer
Amen; and even after the birth of a Prince there were mutterings that God
had already provided for the nation in the hopeful issue of the Queen of
Bohemia. Ill-bred Puritan ministers, in the outspoken theological language
of the day, prayed for the conversion of the Popish Queen; and as the
Catholic revival developed, to dislike and disapproval was added the more
potent force of fear.

The language of the _Grand Remonstrance_ and of many other contemporary
documents leaves no doubt that there was a widespread belief in the
existence of a plot managed by the "engineers and factors of Rome," of whom
the Queen was one of the chief,[179] to capture the country and the Church
of England. The signs in the national establishment which raised the hopes
of the Catholics became a terror to the Puritans. It was no wonder. As Du
Perron said from the other point of view, it was but a century since the
schism, and the Anglican Church had not yet the stability which comes from
time, so that the idea of its reconciliation to Rome was less chimerical
than in later times. Nor had the attempts to make Protestantism
co-extensive with the nation been altogether successful. It is probable
that Richelieu overrated the importance of the English Catholics, but,
nevertheless, the trouble he took to conciliate them bears witness to the
light in which they were regarded in the best-informed circles on the
Continent. Not a few of them were men of position and wealth, and their
number was certainly considerable; it probably reached at least
150,000,[180] or three in every hundred,[181] and one Catholic reporter
says that in Lancashire and Yorkshire as many as a third of the population
adhered to the old faith.[182] The Archbishop of Embrun, who was in England
in the latter days of James, is said to have confirmed in London as many as
10,000 persons. Another witness,[183] who had some opportunities for
forming a judgment, believed that a third of the nation was either openly
or secretly Catholic, and that another third, the Protestant part of the
Church of England, only remained in schism from fear of the recusancy laws,
and though this estimate is of course grossly exaggerated, it is
significant as showing the opinions which were prevalent. The loudly
expressed hopes of the Catholics reacted upon the fears of the Puritans,
who saw in them not only the proof of the power of their open foes, but a
confirmation of their worst suspicions regarding their more secret enemies
in the Church of England. Laud, the most loyal of Anglican Churchmen, did
not recognize his mistake until it was too late. Charles, who was always a
good Protestant, or in modern parlance a High Churchman, perhaps never
recognized his even when it led him to the scaffold.

The recklessness with which the King gave colour to the suspicions of the
Puritans is indeed remarkable. The husband of a Catholic Queen, the son of
a lady whose Protestantism was far from unimpeachable, he had recognized in
early life the necessity of caution; he had no belief in the claims of the
Church of Rome, and probably felt its attraction less strongly than his
father, whose grandiose imagination was struck by its great claims and long
history. Yet he showed marked favour to Roman ecclesiastics such as Du
Perron, he allowed the triumphant ceremonies of Somerset House, and he
sanctioned the almost open exercise of Catholic worship, only from time to
time showing a feeble concession to the feeling of the country by such
measures as forbidding the English Catholics to frequent the chapels of the
ambassadors, and by issuing a proclamation which at the Queen's prayers he
deprived of most of its force. There is, of course, only one sufficient
explanation of his conduct. He was, it is true, like others of his family,
a believer in a certain kind of toleration. He thought it a base thing for
a man to change his religion, and he considered that any Christian might be
saved. He was also, except when actuated by feelings of revenge, a merciful
man to whom persecution was distasteful, and there were probably moods in
which he imagined himself a second Henry IV, under whose paternal sway the
rival religions could live at peace; but the real reason of his tenderness
to the Catholics was his love for his wife. As in the old days Buckingham
could make him do anything, so in later times could Henrietta Maria. Her
tears, her smiles, her caresses won boon after boon for her
co-religionists, until she wrung from him the last, the most disastrous
concession of all. No single act was more fatal to his throne or more
prejudicial to the ultimate interests of the Catholics than the
establishment of the agency which brought into England Panzani, Con, and
later Rosetti; as these worthy men rolled about London in their fine
carriages, secure in the royal favour, and none daring to make them afraid,
they believed that they were helping forward the conversion of England. In
reality, they were riveting for more than a century longer the chains of
the English Catholics.

As for Henrietta herself, she was unfortunate in religious as in other
matters. It is hardly too much to say that she pulled down her husband's
throne to help her co-religionists, and yet in the light of future events
it must be gravely questioned whether the progress of Catholicism under her
protection was not too dearly bought by the terror and hatred which it
inspired in the English mind, and whether in the end the Church was
advanced by her coming into England. On the other hand, she had just
sufficient moderation (which showed itself particularly in her recognition
of the impossibility of bringing up her children in her own faith) to
render her slightly suspect to the more fanatical Catholics in Rome and
elsewhere. When the hour of need came the English Catholics, recalling her
benefits and dreading above all things the domination of the Puritans, did
indeed for the most part rally loyally round her; but on the Continent it
was chiefly remembered that she was the devoted wife of a heretic King,
whose qualified mercy so prized at home seemed abroad but a mockery of the
hopes of the royal marriage.[184]

[Footnote 104: _Continuation of Weekly Newes_, No. 43, 1624.]

[Footnote 105: The following extract from J. Evelyn's _State of France_
(1652) shows the opinion which cultivated Protestants held of French
Catholics:--

"The Roman Catholicks of France are nothing so precise, secret and bigotish
as are either the Recusants of England, Spain and Italy, but are for the
most part an indifferent sort of Christian, naturally not so superstitious
and devout, nor in such Vassallage to his Holinesse as in other parts of
Europe where the same opinions are professed: which indifferency, whether I
may approve of or condemn, I need not declare here."]

[Footnote 106: See Avenel: _Lettres de Richelieu, passim._ The importance
of winning over the English Catholics is dwelt upon in the instructions
given to ambassadors; see also the memorial on the state of England drawn
up by Fontenay-Mareuil, in 1634, which dwells upon the pro-Spanish
tendencies of the English Catholics and the means of overcoming them: those
English Catholics who desired benefits from France were wont to consider,
"that whereas the Catholics of England have been traduced to be all of the
Spanish faction, that is a mere calumny."--Archives of the See of
Westminster.]

[Footnote 107: The original of this letter is preserved among the Archives
of the See of Westminster.]

[Footnote 108: During the singing of the hymns and psalms he knelt down,
and during the prayers he said his rosary: "Cela édifia fort les
Catholiques Anglais qui ne manquoient pas d'épier les actions des ministres
de France, pour les rapporter aux Espagnols avec lesquels ils étoient fort
unis."--_Mémoires de Brienne (Ville-aux-clercs), Petitot_ (1824), p. 391.]

[Footnote 109: Bib. Nat., MS. Dupuy, 144.]

[Footnote 110: Bib. Ste Geneviève, Paris, MS. 820. Tillières to Puisieux,
January 9th, 1624.]

[Footnote 111: He seems to have been much liked by the English Catholics;
he is said to have held a special commission to advance their interests.
P.R.O. Roman Transcripts.]

[Footnote 112: Arch. Nat., M. 232.]

[Footnote 113: Aff. Etran. Ang., t. 44. This document goes on to say that
the request of the Parliament for the execution of the recusancy laws was
founded "sur la crainte des Espagnols desquels les Catholiques sont tenus
pour fauteurs et pensionnaires," and also in the fear that the liberty
promised at the time of the marriage would enable the Catholics "de faire
quelque entreprise contre le bien de l'Estat." Dod, in his _Church
History_, gives the names of only two priests who suffered the death
penalty during the years of Charles' power.]

[Footnote 114: See the letters which, just before her marriage, she wrote
to her brother the King of France and to the Pope on this subject. Green:
_Letters of Queen Henrietta Maria_, pp. 8, 9.]

[Footnote 115: P.R.O. Roman Transcripts.]

[Footnote 116: Charles wished Father Philip to be consecrated Bishop, but
this suggestion did not meet with the approval of the French Government.
Aff. Etran. Ang., t. 43.]

[Footnote 117: P.R.O. French Transcripts.]

[Footnote 118: "Je ne dis rien de l'assiduite de ces pères a ouir les
confessions depuis six heures du matin iusques a midi et demy, l'assistance
qu'ils rendoyent aux malades et aux prisonniers. . . ."--Henrietta Maria to
Card. Barberini, 1658. P.R.O. Roman Transcripts.]

[Footnote 119: A translation of these memoirs is published at the end of
the _Court and Times of Charles I_; they are inaccurate in detail, and
though amusing reading, do not give a high opinion of the intellect of the
writer.]

[Footnote 120: Panzani: P.R.O. Roman Transcripts.]

[Footnote 121: Salvetti: Add. MS., 27,962, I, f. 263.]

[Footnote 122: Aff. Etran. Ang., t. 47.]

[Footnote 123: A chapel had been built at St. James's at an earlier date;
the "new chapel at St. James's" is mentioned in 1630.]

[Footnote 124: "Les royales ceremonies faites en l'edification d'une
chapelle de Capucins a Londres en Angleterre dans le Palais de la Roine;
faite par son commandement et par la permission du Roy; en laquelle
chapelle elle a posé la premiere pierre."--Paris, 1632.]

[Footnote 125: "Si cette genereuse Princesse, soeur du plus juste et du
plus vaillant de tous les roys . . . s'est ainsi acquise ceste liberté de
conscience chez elle, pensez-vous qu'elle en demeure la? et qu'elle ne
l'acquiere pas bien tost en faveur de tous les Catholiques qui sont en
Angleterre."--_Ibid._]

[Footnote 126: The French were inclined from experience in their own land
to believe that Protestants and Catholics could live peaceably together.
See _Remonstrance au roy d'Angleterre sur la miserable condition des
Catholiques ses subjects en comparaison du favorable traictement que
Huguenots recoivent en France_. MDCXXVIII.]

[Footnote 127: Arch. Nat., M. 232. The letter is endorsed "coppie d'une
lettre dressée par le R. P. Général pour la Reyne Mère à la Reyne
d'Angleterre."]

[Footnote 128: Aff. Etran. Ang., t. 44.]

[Footnote 129: The Queen's attempts to soften her husband's heart towards
the Scotch Catholics are mentioned in _Memoirs of Scottish Catholics during
Seventeenth and Eighteenth Centuries_, by W. Forbes Leith, S.J.]

[Footnote 130: P.R.O. Roman Transcripts.]

[Footnote 131: The French translation of this petition is entitled:
"Remonstrance et Declaration des Catholiques Anglais faites au roi
d'Angleterre à son Couronnement du royaume d'Escosse."

"Pour obtenir de sa Majesté la Liberté de la Religion Catholique dans
l'estendue de ses royaumes" (1633).]

[Footnote 132: Tillières (see his _Mémoires_) believed that the Queen,
during the years of Weston's power, could have obtained much more liberty
for the Catholics than she did had she been willing to work with him: he
dwells, as do Salvetti (Add. MS., 27,962) and Fontenay-Mareuil
(_Mémoires_), upon the favour she showed to Puritans; the latter says that
the peace of the Catholics came from their insignificance between the
nearly equal parties of the Protestants and the Puritans, but his personal
hostility to Henrietta may have made him unwilling to give her the credit
which in this matter she certainly deserved.]

[Footnote 133: Archives of See of Westminster: _Summarium de rebus
religionis in Anglia_, 1632.]

[Footnote 134: P.R.O. Roman Transcripts. As early as 1629 a letter from
London speaks of the confidence of the Catholics in the protection of the
Queen--"gia piu volte isperimentata" (_ibid_).]

[Footnote 135: "Elle [Henrietta Maria] edifia ce Temple magnifique dans son
Palais de Somerset ou les Pères Capucins qu'elle y logea chanterent en
toute liberté les louanges de Dieu. La s'assembloient comme dans le Temple
de Jerusalem, tous les fidèles d'Angleterre: là Jésus-Christ étoit offert à
Dieu son père dans le très auguste Sacrifice: la se préschoient hautement
les veritez Catholiques: là les Sacrémens s'administroient: là se
vendroient à la porte les livres saints: là tous les jours le pavé s'étoit
baigne de larmes de joye et de douleur des justes et pécheurs penitents: là
les enfans venoient adorer le Dieu de leurs Pères: là s'abjuroit
publiquement le schisme et le heresie: là le Pape étoit honore comme le
Vicaire de Jésus-Christ: là les Images, les Huiles saintes, les prières
pour les Morts estoient en usage et en respect: la en un mot l'Arche
Vivante renversoit Dagon sur terre: là elle exercoit ses jugements sur les
Philistines: là elle triomphoit des faux Dieux de Samarie."--François
Faure, Oraison Funèbre de Henriette Marie de France, Reyne de la Grande
Bretagne (1670).]

[Footnote 136: Henrietta Maria speaks of nine hundred persons converted by
the Capuchins, besides some ministers. P.R.O. Roman Transcripts. Henrietta
Maria to Cardinal Barberini, 1658. Du Perron says that every year between
two and three hundred persons were converted by means of the Capuchins and
the Oratorians, and that besides a large number were converted by English
priests working under the protection of the toleration.]

[Footnote 137: See Memoirs of Père Cyprien de Gamache.]

[Footnote 138: Prynne, _Popish Royal Favourite_.]

[Footnote 139: The King contented himself with taking one-third instead of
two-thirds of the property of recusants.]

[Footnote 140: Archives of See of Westminster.]

[Footnote 141: Bishop Hacket: _Memoirs of the Life of Archbishop Williams_
(1715), p. 87.]

[Footnote 142: Madame de Motteville, in the account of the troubles of
England, which she heard from Henrietta Maria, says, "l'Archevêque de
Cantorberi qui dans son coeur étant très bon Catholique...."--_Mémoires
de Mme. de Motteville_ (1783), t. 1, p. 242.

Heylin, who knew a good deal of Laud's mind, says: "I hold it probable
enough that the better to oblige the Queen unto him (of whose prevailing in
the King's affections he [Laud] could not be ignorant), he might consent to
Con's coming hither over from the Pope."--_Cyprianus Anglicans_, IV, p.
411.]

[Footnote 143: Archives of See of Westminster.]

[Footnote 144: Quod non fecerunt barbari, fecerunt Barberini.]

[Footnote 145: Panzani: _Memoirs_, ed. Berington (1793), p. 191.]

[Footnote 146: Archives of See of Westminster.]

[Footnote 147: This statement rests on the authority of Panzani, who had a
considerable prejudice against the Jesuits.]

[Footnote 148: Père Suffren, the confessor of Mary de' Medici, seems to
have been the only Jesuit whom he ever regarded with favour.]

[Footnote 149: Jean Jaubert de Barrault, Bishop of Bazas.]

[Footnote 150: "Les religieux et particulierement les Jesuites sont estimes
en Angleterre broullons, aux affaires destat et les Prestres seculiers
n'ont iammais estés soubsonés de ceste faulte."--Archives of See of
Westminster.]

[Footnote 151: The Proclamation against the Bishop dates from 1628, but it
seems only to have been intended to frighten him; he did not leave England
until 1631.]

[Footnote 152: P.R.O. Roman Transcripts.]

[Footnote 153: Archives of See of Westminster. Bishop Smith had compromised
his position at Rome by expressing himself willing to resign his See and
afterwards refusing to do so.]

[Footnote 154: The details of Douglas' mission are to be found in papers
among the Roman Transcripts P.R.O.]

[Footnote 155: Archives of See of Westminster. This unfavourable
description occurs in a curious paper, drawn up in 1625, headed: "Que les
ecclesiastiques qui seront aupres de la Royne d'Angleterre doivent etre
natives d'Angleterre mesme." A later section of the same paper is headed:
"Que les ecclesiastiques qui seront aupres de la Royne d'Angleterre doivent
plustost estre Prestres seculiers que Religieux." See note 1 on p. 113,
which contains an extract from the same paper.]

[Footnote 156: _Vita Mariæ Stuartæ Scotiæ Reginæ Dotariæ Galliæ,
Angliæ et Hibernis Heredis, scriptore Georgia Conæo._ MDCXXIV.]

[Footnote 157: P.R.O. Roman Transcripts. Henrietta Maria to Urban VIII,
163-8/9.]

[Footnote 158: P.R.O. Roman Transcripts.]

[Footnote 159: Archives of See of Westminster.]

[Footnote 160: See chapter III.]

[Footnote 161: She never made any great effort to bring up her children as
Catholics. She took Prince Charles to Mass sometimes, but desisted at her
husband's request. In the marriage contract all that was said about the
religion of the children of the marriage was, that they were to have free
exercise of the Catholic religion, but it was provided that they were to be
brought up by their mother until they reached the age of thirteen years.]

[Footnote 162: Bib. Nat., Paris, MS. Cinq Cents de Colbert, 356. Greffier
to Du Perron, December 9th, 1632.]

[Footnote 163: P.R.O. Roman Transcripts.]

[Footnote 164: There were two oaths which troubled the Catholics, that of
supremacy and that of allegiance; the first declared the King "supremo Capo
della Chiesa Anglicana," the second was aimed at the deposing power of the
Pope, and was drawn up in 1606. A good many Catholics, particularly the
Benedictines, believed that the second, or oath of allegiance, could
lawfully be taken by Catholics (who suffered commercially from their
refusal) notwithstanding its condemnation by Paul V. Panzani's Relazione,
Add. MS., 15,389.]

[Footnote 165: Archives of See of Westminster.]

[Footnote 166: _Ibid._]

[Footnote 167: _Ibid._]

[Footnote 168: _Deus, Natura, Gratia_ (1635). The real name of the author
was Christopher Davenport; he died in 1680.]

[Footnote 169: Archives of See of Westminster.]

[Footnote 170: "Il Laboru sacerdote secolare m'ha detto che pochi giorni
sono il Cantuarieuse diose alia Duchessa di Buchingam che presto questo
Regno sarà reconciliata alia Chiesa Romana. Io non volevo credere questo ma
detto Laboru me l'ha giurato. Io manco lo credo e se l'ha detto havrà
burlato."--Panzani to Barberini, April 9th, 1636. Add. MS., 15,389.]

[Footnote 171: Archives of See of Westminster. Letter of Peter Fitton,
agent of English secular clergy in Rome, July, 1636.]

[Footnote 172: Add. MS., 15,389.]

[Footnote 173: P.R.O. Roman Transcripts. Henrietta Maria to Cardinal
Barberini, October, 1637.]

[Footnote 174: "Da questo e da altri motivi puotiamo vedere che la quiete
che godiamo per la gratia di Dio non e per ragione del Stato come alcuni
politici a Roma discorrono, perche tal quiete non e giudicata a proposito
da questi ministri di Stato ma piu presto il contrario accio che tanto piu
apparisca il zelo constante della Regina alla quale sola in terra si deve
tutto."--June, 1639. Add. MS., 15,392, f. 64.]

[Footnote 175: P.R.O. Roman Transcripts. In 1629 she had accepted the
dedication of the English translation of Richeome's _Pilgrime of Loretto_.]

[Footnote 176: Add. MS., 15,389.]

[Footnote 177: MS. Français, 23,597.]

[Footnote 178: Rous: _Diary_, Camden Soc. (1856), p. 12.]

[Footnote 179: Cf. Prynne: _Popish Royal Favourite_ (1643). "By all these
our whole 3 Kingdomes ... must of necessity now see and acknowledge that
there is and hath bin all his Majesties Reigne till this instant a most
strong cunning desperate confederacie prosecuted (wherein the Queens
Majestie hath been chiefe) to set up Popery in perfection and extirpate the
Protestant party and religion in all his Majesties dominions" (p. 35).]

[Footnote 180: 150,000 is the number given by a Catholic reporter in 1635
(Westminster Archives), and Panzani gives the same number. Add. MS.,
15,389.]

[Footnote 181: The population of England and Wales was probably about
5,000,000.]

[Footnote 182: Archives of See of Westminster.]

[Footnote 183: Du Perron: _Proces Verbal de l'assemblée du clerge_, 1645.]

[Footnote 184: It can hardly be doubted that when the marriage dispensation
was given it was hoped that Charles' successor would be a Catholic. The
English Catholics resident abroad shared to some extent the continental
opinion of the King and Queen of England.]



CHAPTER V

THE QUEEN'S CONVERTS

  Now for my converts who, you say, unfed,
  Have follow'd me for miracles of bread,
  Judge not by hearsay, but observe at least,
  If since their change their loaves have been increas'd.

                                                      J. DRYDEN


Considering the activity of the Catholics at the Court of Charles I and his
Queen, it is not surprising that from time to time some one, man or woman,
abjured the national faith to enter what it was so confidently asserted was
the one true fold. When this occurred Protestant feeling was apt to run
high, and the King, to whose indulgence the trouble was certainly in some
measure due, usually expressed himself greatly shocked and indignant, and
for a time, at least, withdrew his favour from the offender.

Perhaps the most remarkable of these cases was that of the Queen's friend,
Walter Montagu. This gentleman, who had improved his natural talents by
travels which led him to Madrid, to Paris and to Rome, was also much
noticed by the King, to whom he was recommended by the fact that he had
been a friend of Buckingham, and had actually been with the Duke when he
was assassinated at Portsmouth. He was employed a good deal on secret
service, and once he was able to render an important service, destined to
influence both their lives, to Queen Anne of Austria. He had been sent by
his own sovereign to stir up Savoy and Lorraine against France, and not
even his position as envoy of England could save him or his dispatches from
the emissaries of Richelieu or from the Bastille. Anne was implicated in
these intrigues against her husband's country, and in an agony of terror,
haunted by visions of the ignominious return to Spain with which she had
several times been threatened, she sent to Montagu to learn the extent of
her danger. The young Englishman, who had long worshipped the beautiful
Queen,[185] gladly seized the opportunity of proving his devotion. Let the
Queen have no fear, came back his chivalrous answer; she was not mentioned
in the dispatches, and rather than that she should come to harm he would
lay down his life. This sacrifice was not required, but Anne escaped
detection and Montagu earned her lifelong gratitude. On his return to
England after his enlargement, he made rapid progress in the favour of
Henrietta Maria in spite of the connection with Buckingham, which can
hardly have been a recommendation to her. So great was the kindness with
which she regarded him, that no courtier seemed to have before him a more
prosperous career, when towards the end of 1635 the Court was startled by
the news that he had joined the Church of Rome. "Sure the Devil rides
him,"[186] was the pithy comment of one of his acquaintance, John
Ashburnham.

Walter, who at this time was living in Paris, defended his action in a
highly argumentative letter which he addressed to his father, but which he
took care to have distributed among his friends in many copies. The Earl of
Manchester, who was said to be the best-tempered man in England, does not
seem to have been able to support this vexation with equanimity, and he
sent a somewhat acrid reply to his son, whose apologetics were also refuted
by Lucius, Lord Falkland. Montagu had often enjoyed the intellectual
hospitality of Great Tew, where men of wit and learning were accustomed to
gather round this accomplished young nobleman, who was the more fitted for
his task of controversy, inasmuch as his mother, his brothers and his
sisters were among the "revolters to Rome," while his own fidelity to the
Church of England had been for a while gravely in question.

But before Montagu received the remonstrances and arguments of his friends
(which, as usually happens in such cases, proved quite unavailing), he had
met with an adventure which connects his change of faith with one of the
most curious episodes in the religious history of the period.

At this time all France was talking of the terrible fate of the Ursuline
nuns at Loudun, who were manifestly possessed by the devil, and of the
wonderful exorcisms whereby certain holy men were able to overcome his
wiles and machinations. It was quite a fashionable amusement to ride out to
Loudun, visit the "possessed," and witness the ceremonies of exorcism; and
one day at the end of November, 1635, Montagu, accompanied by Thomas
Killigrew, a literary friend whom he had met in Paris, set off and arrived
in due course at the convent of which Satan had made his stronghold. There
the two Englishmen, who were provided with a letter of introduction from
the Archbishop of Tours, saw some of the marvels which are recorded in the
_Histoire des Diables de Loudun_. The poor possessed nuns crawled about
before them gnawing and bellowing like wild beasts and uttering fearful
blasphemies, until the devil was forced to relinquish his prey by the
application of various relics and the recitation of appropriate prayers.
Strangers were always welcome at these spectacles, though sometimes they
came away calling the poor nuns "impostorious," an epithet applied to them
by honest John Evelyn, who knew them but by repute; but Montagu, as an
Englishman of noble birth high in the favour of the Queen of France, was
treated with special distinction, Father Surin, the exorcist, who had been
told by the Archbishop of Tours "so to manage matters that the English lord
might receive edification,"[187] even permitting him to hold the hand of
one of the most distinguished of the patients, Mother des Anges, from whom
eventually four demons were chased. On this occasion she was possessed by
an evil spirit named Balaam, who had boasted that on his exit he would
print his name upon his victim's hand. But the good Father, "judging it
more proper that a religious person should bear on her hand the name of a
saint than that of a devil,"[188] forced him to another course of action.
As Montagu gazed upon the poor struggling woman, who required several
persons to hold her in her paroxysm, he beheld, as he had been led to
expect, the name of Joseph write itself on the back of her hand in small
red dots. This strange occurrence, which seemed to him explicable on no
natural ground, impressed his mind as much as it was intended that it
should,[189] and he convert returned to Paris with an increased
appreciation of the advantages of belonging to a Church which held in her
hand the power of such marvels. He hastened to communicate his impressions
to Richelieu, who took an interest in the nuns, and who was wont to extend
a condescending patronage to the Englishman, whom in his heart he despised
and distrusted. "I have seen at Loudun," wrote the new convert after
relating his experiences, "proofs so miraculous of the power of the Church
that above my belief I owe to God perpetual gratitude"; nor, he added, was
he alone in his admiration. Several Englishmen "who were possessed by a
spirit of falsehood and contradiction"[190] had come away confessing with
him that the matter was miraculous. His friend Killigrew was not, it seems,
one of these convicted gainsayers. The poet left Loudun quite unconvinced
and rather sceptical about the whole affair, though he confessed that he
could not account for the print on the nun's hand.[191]

Montagu's prospects of a great career in the service of the King were over.
He loudly asserted his loyalty, but probably he hardly needed his father's
stern reminder that though "the King's benignitie and goodnesse is always
to interpret the best," yet "his Majestie hath a better opinion of those
that are bred such [i.e. Catholics] than of those who become such by
relapse."[192]

In effect, the King from that moment turned his back upon his servant,
whom, it seems, he had never personally much liked. Not even the memory of
Buckingham could cover such a failure of loyalty and patriotism.

But Walter was not to suffer by a change of faith, which some people, and
among them Cardinal Richelieu (whom the convert's account of his
experiences left untouched), were not slow to attribute to self-interest
rather than to religious feeling. The Queen had always been fond of him on
account of his singular charm of manner, which often fascinated even his
enemies, and after his conversion she admitted him to a degree of intimacy
and confidence which more than made up for the coldness of the King. It was
felt, indeed, that for a while he had better remain upon the Continent, and
he spent a pleasant time in Paris, where he showed his zeal for his
new-found faith by professing himself ready to die for it, and by
accompanying the King of France to Mass with a rosary hung round his neck.
Thence he passed on to Turin, where he met with a warm reception from
Henrietta's sister Christine, whose acquaintance he had made some years
earlier when he was in Savoy as secret agent for the King of England. Now
he was able to present to the Duchess a warm letter of introduction from
her sister, and it appears that he did her some trifling service which led
to a pleasant correspondence between the Courts of England and Savoy.

"Pardon me," wrote Henrietta, "that I have not written to you earlier ...
to thank you ... for the favours which you have shown to Wat Montague. I
know that you have done it for my sake, though truly he merits them for his
own. He does nothing but praise the honours which you have done him, and I
believe that he for his part would gladly lose his life for your
service.... I am very glad that Wat has been able to do you some service. I
am sure that he has done it with all his heart. As for his melancholy
humour, that is perhaps some scruple of conscience which he will lose at
Rome. Besides, he is not naturally very gay."[193]

He went to Rome, and whether he lost his scruples there or not he enjoyed
himself very much, keeping a household of seven servants, dining at the
English College with the prestige of a recent convert, and cultivating the
further acquaintance of the Barberini who, when he was in the city before,
had shown him distinguished attentions, which they now felt had not been
thrown away. The Pope, who "was as much a pretender to be oecumenical
patron of poets as Head of the Church,"[194] liked a convert who was also a
wit, while Cardinal Francesco honoured his visitor with so warm a
friendship that henceforth the two men carried on a frequent
correspondence.[195] Still, despite these distractions, Montagu's eyes all
the time were fixed upon England. His return thither was much desired by
the papal party, and particularly by Con, who was aware of his influence
over the Queen. She, for her part, used all her power with her husband to
win his recall; but Charles, who never got over an affront, was not easily
to be persuaded, and it was not until 1636 that the offender was allowed to
return to take his place among Henrietta's servants and friends.

At the Court of the Queen he found plenty to occupy him. He was, above all
things, a ladies' man--_un petit fou_, only fit to amuse ladies[196]--as
Richelieu rudely wrote of him; and it was to be expected that in the
religious struggles of the Court women should take a considerable part.
Such a war always appeals to feminine feelings and logic, and in this case
the leader of the army was a woman, and one who, though clever and
energetic, was essentially feminine both in heart and mind. The agents of
the Papacy were far too acute to neglect so obvious a source of influence.
Not only was the Queen flattered in every way, but skilful efforts were
made to win the noble ladies who surrounded her. The Anglicans were not
blind to the danger, as appears from the fact that John Cosin, who spent
most of his life in fighting the Catholics and in being accused of Popery
by the Puritans, published a little book of Hours of Prayer, which the
latter called by the pretty name of "Mr. Cozens his cozening devotions," to
counteract the influence of the _Horæ_, used by Henrietta's Catholic
ladies. But the attacking party had certain advantages to which those of
the defence could not aspire. The pictures, the relics, the medals, which
Panzani and Con took care to distribute, were greatly valued by their
recipients, and pleased even such great ladies as the Marchioness of
Hamilton and the Countess of Denbigh. The latter of these ladies had long
been unsettled in the established religion. It was indeed for her guidance
and at her request that Cosin had written his _Book of Hours_. Many years
were to elapse before she finally abandoned the Church of England, but no
doubt these fascinating trifles played their part in preparing her spirit
for the eventual change.

But there were women at the Court who were not to be won by such methods,
but who entered into the thorny path of controversy. Such an one was Lady
Newport, a relative of the late Duke of Buckingham. She had Catholic
relatives, and, thinking perhaps to reclaim them, she attempted argument
with no less a person than Con himself. The result was not very surprising.
Lady Newport was no match for the subtle and insinuating envoy, and the
upshot of her discussions with him was that one night, as she was returning
home from the play in Drury Lane, she turned aside to Somerset House, where
one of the Capuchin Fathers quietly reconciled her to the Church of Rome.
Her feet were caught in the snare from which she had hoped to rescue
others.

A storm of indignation arose. The irate husband hurried off to Lambeth to
enlist the sympathy of Laud, who, nothing loath, laid the matter before the
King and the Council. "I did my duty to the King and State openly in
Council,"[197] wrote the Archbishop complacently to Wentworth. The names of
Sir Toby Matthew and of Walter Montagu were freely mentioned in connection
with the conversion, and though well-informed persons believed that Con
alone was to blame, these two gentlemen did not escape a considerable
measure of unpopularity. Laud, who, though he was anxious not to offend the
Queen, was becoming alarmed at the boldness of the Catholics, went down on
his knees to the King, praying for the banishment of Montagu, and for leave
to proceed against Sir Toby in the High Commission Court. As for Con, he
said bitterly, he knew neither how he came to Court nor what he was doing
there, and therefore he would say nothing of him.

The King did not grant the Archbishop's modest request, but at the Council
table he spoke so bitterly of both the culprits that "the fright made Wat
keep his chamber longer than his sickness would have detained him, and Don
Tobiah was in such perplexity that I find he will make a very ill man to be
a martyr, by now the dog doth again wag his tail."[198]

The storm, indeed, quickly blew over. Lord Newport forgave his wife, who
discreetly retired to France for a time. Even the Queen, who had been
greatly angered at the treatment of the Catholics, particularly of Montagu,
forgave the Archbishop and received him with the modified favour which was
all she ever had to bestow upon him. Everything seemed to be as before,
only perhaps Laud kept a more watchful eye upon the recusants, and two
years later he was able to take a revenge at once upon the Queen and upon
her priests by causing "two great Trusses of Popish books,"[199] coming
from France for the use of the Capuchins, to be seized by the officers of
the Court of High Commission.

But unfortunately the troubles which had been occasioned by the conversion
of the Countess of Newport did not deter other susceptible ladies from
following in her steps. "The great women fall away every day,"[200] sighed
a good Protestant, writing to a friend in May, 1638. That his plaint was
not without cause is evident from the following portion of a letter which
was written by a foreigner who was then resident in England:--

"The Queen's Majesty has frequented her chapel of Somerset House all Holy
Week with great concourse and rejoicing of these Catholics, to the great
chagrin of the Puritans. Besides the accustomed ceremonies and devotions of
this week, on Holy Saturday a score of ladies of the Court, of whom the
chief was the Duchess of Buckingham, were seen to receive all the
ceremonies of baptism (except the water) at the hands of a Capuchin Father,
and afterwards the sacrament of confirmation at those of the Bishop of
Angoulême, the Grand Almoner of the Queen. All was done within the chapel
in the tribune of Her Majesty ... and in her presence. These ladies desired
this kind of second baptism because they received the first at the hands of
Protestant ministers, which they hold to be valid in a certain sense, and
yet nevertheless mutilated."

The narrator goes on to speak of the anger of the Puritans, who complained
bitterly of such proceedings and of the indifference of Charles to their
clamour. "They will have to calm themselves," he adds, for "to-day the
Queen has greater authority with the King than any one else."[201]

This was in the spring of the year 1638, a few months after the beginning
of the Scotch troubles and two years and a half before the meeting of the
Long Parliament.

[Footnote 185: "My sute is that if ever you have occasion to speak to the
Blessed Queene (Anne) of any ill thing that you express it by naming me,
for that's the only way I can hope she should ever heare of me
againe."--Walter Montagu to Earl of Carlisle. Egerton MS., 2596.]

[Footnote 186: _Cal. S.P. Dom._, 1635, p. 512.]

[Footnote 187: "Le Père Surin de la compagnie de Jésus aiant recu une
lettre de Mgr. l'archeveque de Tours par laquelle il lui reccommandoit de
faire en sorte que le Sieur de Montagu reçût edification aux
exorcisms."--_Procès-verbal_ of exorcisms printed in _Histoire des Diables
de Loudun_, 1693.]

[Footnote 188: _Ibid._]

[Footnote 189: The following is Montagu's own account: "Nous estions ...
presents au sortir du diable qui avoit commandment de tracer le nom de
Joseph sur la main pour marque de la sortie. Je tenois la fille par la main
quand elle fit le grand cris [sic] et quand le prestre nous nous dit qu'il
falloit chercher le signe et ie vis escrire peu a peu les lettres de Joseph
sur le dos de la main en petites pointes de sang ou elles demeurent
gravees."--Montagu to Richelieu, November 30th, 1635. Aff. Etran. Ang., t.
45.

The case of the nuns of Loudun has never been satisfactorily explained; the
"possessions" and exorcisms were witnessed by a large number of persons,
none of whom were able to convict the nuns of fraud. Urbain Grandier, the
priest who was believed to have bewitched them, was burned in 1634. The
following account of Mother des Anges is taken from a biography, written
towards the end of the seventeenth century, of Mother Louise Eugénie de la
Fontaine of the Order of the Visitation: "Mère des Anges etoit une âme dont
les conduites extraordinaires de Dieu sur elle donnoient beaucoup
d'admiration. Chacun scait que dans les fameuses possessions de Loudun ces
saintes filles eprouvèrent cet effroyable fléau. La mère des Anges (que le
feu Père Surin conduisit et admiroit) en etoit une; il chassa de son corps
quatre demons dont le premier écrivit en sortant en gros ses lettres sur la
main droite Jésus, le second en moindre caractère Marie, et le troisième
Joseph en plus petit, et le quatrième encore moindre François de Sales; ces
noms etoient gravez sous le peau, ils paroissoient comme de coleur de rose
sèches mais ils prenoient un vermeil miraculeux au moment de la sainte
communion."]

[Footnote 190: Montagu to Richelieu, November 30th, 1635. Aff. Etran. Ang.,
t. 45.]

[Footnote 191: See Killigrew's own account of the _affaire_ printed in
_European Magazine_, 1803, Vol. 43, p. 102.]

[Footnote 192: "The coppy of a letter sent from France by Mr. Walter
Montagu to his father the Lord Privie Seale with his answere thereunto.
Also a second answer to the same letter by the Lord Falkland" (1641), p.
20.]

[Footnote 193: Ferrero: _Lettres de Henriette Marie de France reine
d'Angleterre à sa soeur Christine duchesse de Savoie_ (1881), p. 45.]

[Footnote 194: _Lignea Ligenda_ (1653), p. 169.]

[Footnote 195: Copies of Montagu's letters to Barberini, extending over
many years, are among the Roman Transcripts in the P.R.O.]

[Footnote 196: P.R.O. Roman Transcripts.]

[Footnote 197: Laud wrote to Wentworth November 1st, 1637. Laud's Works,
Vol. VII, p. 379. See the account of the matter from Laud's point of view
in Heylin: _Cyprians Anglians_, Bk. IV, p. 359 (1668).]

[Footnote 198: Conway to Strafford. _The Earl of Stafford's Letters and
Dispatches_, II, 125.]

[Footnote 199: Turner MS., LXVII.]

[Footnote 200: _The Earl of Stafford's Letters and Dispatches_, II, 165.]

[Footnote 201: Salvetti. Add. MS., 27,962, H., f. 125.]



CHAPTER VI

THE EVE OF THE WAR

I

  Some happy wind over the ocean blow
  This tempest yet, which frights our island so.

                                        EDMUND WALLER


On July 23rd, 1637, the new liturgy, which the care of Archbishop Laud had
provided for the Scottish Church, was to be read for the first time in the
Church of St. Giles in Edinburgh. The clergyman entered the reading-desk
and the service began. But before he had read many words a tumult, in which
a crowd of women of the lower class took a prominent part, arose. National
feeling and religious feeling were alike outraged by the introduction of
the new Mass-book from England,[202] and the assembly, which had been
called together for public worship, broke up in wild confusion. That local
riot, which seemed but an ebullition of temporary fanaticism and
discontent, was in reality the symptom of a grave disease in the body
politic. It meant for Scotland the beginning of a civil war, which soon was
to cross the border and to break up in the sister kingdom the long internal
peace which had made her the envied of Europe. It meant for Henrietta Maria
and her husband the end of their happy, careless years, and the entering
upon a series of misfortunes, the number and bitterness of which are almost
unparalleled even in the annals of the House of Stuart.

After the riot events moved quickly, for behind the rioters was the virile
force of the Scottish nation. Charles was unwilling to give way, and by
November his northern subjects were almost in open revolt.

It was an unfortunate moment. The English Puritans, who were irritated by
their own grievances, showed an indecorous satisfaction in the Scottish
events, as shrewd observers, such as Salvetti, the Florentine envoy in
London, were not slow to observe. The King had no money to meet expenses,
and no means of getting any, except the objectionable one of calling a
Parliament. Abroad the outlook was no better, and Charles and Henrietta
ought to have known, if they did not, that they had no friend upon whom
they could rely in such a strait.

They were to find that it was not for nothing that they had scouted the
threats and warnings of Richelieu. That old man, sitting in his study in
the Palais Cardinal in Paris, held in his frail hands the threads of all
the diplomacy of Europe. He had long looked with no favourable eye upon
England, for the alliance which he had himself brought about had proved one
of his greatest disappointments. The union of the crowns of England and
Scotland had deprived France of a warm and constant ally,[203] and it was
to counterbalance this loss that Henry IV had planned, and Richelieu had
carried out, Henrietta's marriage. The Cardinal had not reckoned upon the
indeed somewhat unlikely contingency that a royal marriage should also
become a marriage of affection and community of interest. The first step in
his defeat was the dismission of the French in 1626, and this insult, which
circumstances did not permit him to avenge at once, was never forgiven to
its author the King of England, whom he also hated, because, in the words
of Madame de Motteville, he believed him to have a Spanish heart, and
because Queen Anne was allowed to carry on her Spanish correspondence by
way of England. Of Henrietta he had hardly a better opinion. She had
fulfilled none of the purposes for which he had sent her into England, and
though originally she had unwillingly submitted to her husband's will in
the matter of her servants, in later days she had made no great effort to
recall them. She had done little to cement an alliance between the two
kingdoms, and the English Catholics, whom she had been specially
commissioned to win over, remained, for the most part, obstinately attached
to the interests of Spain. Their relations had been, moreover, severely
strained by the Chateauneuf episode, and they were further embittered by
the disgrace and exile of Mary de' Medici, which her daughter rightly
attributed to Richelieu, whose conduct in the matter she considered an act
of the blackest ingratitude towards the woman who had made his fortune.

Nevertheless, about this time Richelieu made a final attempt to win the
personal favour of the Queen of England. He dispatched the Count of
Estrades on a special mission to England, of which no inconsiderable part
was to discover the sentiments of the Queen, and he told Bellièvre, the
French ambassador in London, that he believed her to be friendly towards
France, and requested him to treat her with kindness and sympathy. Neither
of the envoys met with much success. Estrades found Henrietta so forbidding
that he did not dare to deliver the letter which Richelieu had confided to
him, and which he had charged him to give or retain, according to the
disposition of the royal lady to whom it was addressed.[204] Bellièvre was
rather better received, but though the Queen showed herself willing to talk
with him and expressed general goodwill towards the Cardinal, the
diplomatist soon discovered that all she desired was help in a private
matter which he waived aside, but in which Richelieu determined to gratify
her, as he saw in it a means of ingratiating himself with her at small
cost.

The Chevalier de Jars, since his dramatic reprieve on the scaffold, had
languished in the Bastille. He had good friends both in England and in
France, but none more persevering and faithful than the Queen of England,
who never forgot a friend in trouble. Over and over again she pleaded with
Richelieu on his behalf, but for a long while he turned a deaf ear to her
appeals, answering her letters on the subject almost rudely. But in the
beginning of 1638 his attitude changed, and he intimated that a little more
persuasion on the part of Henrietta would result in the fulfilment of her
desire.

The matter was conducted with a studied picturesqueness of detail which was
carefully arranged by Richelieu to gratify the vanity of the woman he
wished to please. It was taken out of the hands of the English ambassador,
the Earl of Leicester, and arranged by Walter Montagu, who was at the
Queen's side in London, and by his personal friend Sir Kenelm Digby, who
was staying in Paris, in a private capacity, enjoying the society of his
many learned and scientific friends who resided there. Montagu and Digby
exchanged many letters, and the latter had several interviews with
Richelieu. During one of these he presented to the Cardinal a letter which
the Queen had requested him to deliver. The old man read it with great
satisfaction, though he had to request Sir Kenelm to help him in
deciphering several words, for Henrietta's writing was always very
illegible. When he had finished he laid it down, and looking hard at his
visitor, said in a meaning tone, "I am much pleased with the Queen's
letter, and you may assure her that she shall soon have cause to be pleased
with me."[205]

A few days later, about eight o'clock in the morning, a coach stopped at
the door of Sir Kenelm's lodgings, from which descended Chavigny, the
Secretary of State, and the Chevalier de Jars. Chavigny, after he had
greeted the astonished knight, waved his hand towards his charge and said,
in the courtly accents of a French diplomatist, "Monsieur, I have the
orders of the King and of M. le Cardinal to place this gentleman in your
hands. He is no longer the prisoner of the King of France, but of the Queen
of England."[206]

"It is to be hoped," Montagu had written a few weeks earlier to a member of
the French Government, "that the end of this affair will be the beginning
of that end to which we have always looked, namely, a good understanding
between the Queen and M. le Cardinal."[207] This hope was not fulfilled.
Henrietta was indeed greatly pleased at her friend's release, and she
cannot have failed to admire the graceful manner in which the great man had
granted his favour, but a single act of kindness on the one hand and a
single sentiment of gratitude on the other could not overcome the mutual
distrust of years. Moreover, events were even then occurring which were
destroying any good feeling of which the incident may have been productive.

For some years Mary de' Medici had been casting her eyes upon England as a
possible refuge. She disliked the Low Countries, where she was living, and
as she felt no desire to return to her native Florence, which was the place
of retirement selected for her by Louis XIII, or rather by Richelieu, she
thought that it might be wise to take advantage of the kindness which her
son-in-law, the King of England, had always felt for her. Her presence was
not desired in England; she was considered, with some justice, a
quarrelsome and mischief-making old lady, and her bigoted religious
attitude, joined with the favours which she showed to Spain, were
sufficient to make her unpopular among the people. Charles, however much he
might pity her as the victim of Richelieu, dreaded, short of money as he
was, so expensive and inconvenient a guest. Even Henrietta, with the
thought of her childhood in her mind, was afraid of her mother's arbitrary
interference. "_Adieu ma liberté_," she sighed. Perhaps the Queen-Mother
gathered that she would not be welcome, for the project seems to have been
in abeyance when England was startled by the arrival of another exiled lady
whose character and career presented even more of excitement and variety.

[Illustration: THE DUCHESS OF CHEVREUSE

AFTER THE PICTURE BY MOREELSE ONCE IN THE POSSESSION OF CHARLES I]

Madame de Chevreuse, on arriving in Madrid, had been received with great
kindness, as was only to be expected, for she had been a good friend to
Spain. But after some years of residence in the Spanish capital she found
that, owing to the war between the two countries, communication with France
was extremely difficult. She also began to think of England, where she had
spent some happy days of her earlier life. She felt sure of a good
reception, for she was united to the King by their common political
sympathy with the Spanish, and the Queen, in the past, had regarded her
with much affection. Her intention was quickly acted upon. She set sail
from Corunna in May, 1638, and after a successful voyage landed in England.
She had not deceived herself. The reception given to her by her royal hosts
was worthy of her rank as the wife of a kinsman of the King of England and
of her position as a personal friend of his Queen. Charles and Henrietta,
who were never wanting in hospitality, bade her heartily welcome, and even
invited her to be present at Windsor on the occasion of the little Prince
of Wales' investiture with the insignia of the Order of the Garter, an
attention which was due to the fact that her husband was himself a knight
of that noble order.[208] Nevertheless, the arrival of this factious lady
at so critical a moment was part of that tragic ill-luck of the King and
Queen of England on which their contemporaries remarked.

In London Madame de Chevreuse found many friends, among whom were her
former lover, the Earl of Holland, and Walter Montagu, whose early devotion
to her time had not destroyed. With the latter she at once began to scheme
for the coming of Mary de' Medici, and though for a while it seemed
unlikely that her plans would succeed, owing to the opposition of the King
and the whole nation, yet such was the effect of her skill and persistency
that, a few months after her own arrival, she witnessed the entry into
London of that unfortunate royal lady, in whose sojourn in England must be
sought one of the immediate contributory causes of the Civil War. Well
might Richelieu write on this occasion, with even more truth than he knew,
that "there is nothing so capable of destroying a state as evil minds
protected by their sex."[209]

Mary de' Medici arrived in the end unexpectedly. One Sunday afternoon a
gentleman of her suite arrived at the Court and announced that she had
already put to sea, and would land at Harwich that same evening if she were
assured of a welcome. Neither the King nor the Queen was pleased, but
Charles was too true a gentleman and Henrietta too affectionate a daughter
not to receive her with all honour. The King rode out into the country to
meet her, and escorted her through London amid official rejoicings,
described by a French gentleman in an elaborate account which reflects his
satisfaction.[210] Henrietta awaited her mother at St. James's Palace,
where she received her affectionately, settling her in the pleasant rooms
which had been there prepared, whence the old lady could look out upon the
deer park, and upon the beautiful terrace, which formed the favourite
promenade of the Court.

Meanwhile, Scottish affairs were going from bad to worse. "They growl, but
I hope they will not bite,"[211] wrote a courtier. They were to bite only
too soon. In February, 1638, thousands of Scots were signing the National
Covenant. A few months later the General Assembly of the Kirk sitting at
Glasgow abolished episcopacy, and followed up this act of defiance by
refusing to dissolve at the command of the King's commissioner. Charles
began to appreciate that his northern subjects were in open rebellion,
whose due chastisement was the sword.

But then, as ever, he was crippled by lack of money, and one of the means
which was taken to procure it was another of those acts by which he and his
wife set themselves against the will and sentiment of their people, and
thus prepared the way for their own final ruin, though, in this case, the
blame fell chiefly upon Henrietta, and it is doubtful whether Charles'
share in the transaction was known to the Puritans.[212]

The English Catholics had enjoyed for many years an unprecedented peace and
liberty, which now, owing to the kindness of the King and the Court for the
fascinating Con, had reached such a pitch that England appeared to
foreigners almost like a Catholic country. The recusancy fines, which were
still exacted in a modified form, kept up a certain feeling of irritation,
but on the whole the Catholics were loyal. They felt much gratitude towards
the Queen, on whom their prosperity depended, and when the Scotch rebellion
broke out they would have liked to bear arms in the King's service. Con,
who believed that Charles would willingly have employed them, assured him
that few of his subjects would fight for him as loyally as those of the
ancient faith. The King possibly believed him, but true to his cautious
nature he preferred to ask for a present of money, which the envoy, who,
notwithstanding his short sojourn in England, had a minute acquaintance
with the persons and circumstances of the English Catholics, set himself to
procure. As a first step he called together representatives both of the
clergy and of the laity, and laid before them the royal request.

He had undertaken no easy task. Some of the Catholics, to whom sad
experience had taught prudence, were alarmed at the idea of helping the
King to rule without the need of calling Parliament. Others, going to the
opposite extreme, offered their contributions separately, hoping thus to
gain the royal favour. Worst of all, the ill-feeling between the secular
and regular clergy made any cooperation between the two bodies a matter of
great difficulty. From meetings lasting many hours, at which he had
attempted to weld together these discordant elements, and from still more
fatiguing private audiences, Con, ill and suffering as he then was, came
away weary and dispirited, complaining bitterly of the "obstinate prudence"
of the Jesuits and of the self-seeking of all. "This kingdom," he wrote on
one of these occasions to Cardinal Barberini, "has no men who are moved by
the common good, but each one thinks only of his private interest."[213]

At first the Queen's name appears little, but she watched the negotiations
carefully, and in their latter stages she sent Montagu and Father Philip to
attend the meetings on her behalf, and to bring her news of an undertaking
in whose success she was deeply interested, and in which, for
constitutional reasons, she was now actively to intervene.

The fears of the more timid Catholics were not idle, but showed a truer
political insight than either Charles or Henrietta possessed. It was
necessary to reassure them without allowing the King's name to appear. The
best expedient which could be devised was to make the contribution appear
as a gift, which at the Queen's instigation was offered to her by her
co-religionists. Henrietta had at her side the ingenious Montagu and the
fantastic Sir Kenelm Digby, who was always pleased to adventure himself in
any new enterprise. These two gentlemen now issued a joint appeal to the
Catholics of England, asking, in the Queen's name, for liberal
contributions, and to this appeal she herself prefixed a dignified letter
urging her co-religionists to contribute liberally to the King's expenses
in the northern expedition, "for we believed that it became us who have
been so often interested in the solicitation of their benefits, to show
ourselves now in the persuasion of their gratitudes."[214] These letters,
together with one from the ecclesiastical authorities, were circulated
throughout the land; for each shire of England and Wales one or more
collectors was appointed from among the Catholic gentry.[215]

The Queen had already asked the Catholics to fast every Saturday "for the
King's happy progression in his designs, and for his safe return," and
special services were held in her chapel for the same intention. This was
very well, but it was a different matter when money was asked for from
those who for years had borne more than their share of taxation. In spite
of the zeal of the promoters of the scheme, the money came in but slowly.
The difficulties of collection were great, and though individuals, such as
the Dowager Countess of Rutland, who cheerfully gave £500, were generous,
the general response was not hearty. The Queen, whose sanguine disposition
often caused her to be disappointed, was distressed at the smallness of the
sum which she would be able to offer to the King, and her fertile brain
devised another expedient by which she hoped to increase the £30,000[216]
she had received from the Catholics to £50,000; £10,000 she laid aside out
of her own revenue, and the remainder she hoped to raise among the ladies
of England, "as well widows as wives." Her own friends, the great ladies of
the Court, offered each her £100 with due _empressement_, but outside that
circle the project was not a success, and Henrietta and her advisers were
left to lament once more the lack of loyalty in those whose pleasure they
considered it should have been to contribute to their sovereign's need.

In April Charles set out for Scotland. He left his wife almost regent in
his absence, for he had ordered the Council to defer to her advice.
Henrietta was thus in a position of greater importance and authority than
ever before, and she had the satisfaction of feeling that her influence
over her husband was steadily increasing. The difficult circumstances, now
beginning to entangle her as in a net, were developing that love of
intrigue which had already shown itself in happier times. She had,
moreover, no mean instructors in the art of diplomatic chicanery in two
women who at this time were together at her side exercising a considerable
influence over her. Madame de Chevreuse and Lady Carlisle, since the
arrival of the former in England, had joined hands in a friendship which
had its origin, perhaps, in a common hatred of Richelieu, but which might
be easily accounted for by similarity of character and aims. Madame de
Chevreuse could, indeed, boast a wider experience, for she had taken all
Europe for her stage, while Lady Carlisle was content to play her part in
the comparative obscurity of the British Isles; but a restless love of
power and domination, which expressed itself in a determined effort to
influence by womanly charms those who by force of intellect or by accident
of birth were making the history of the time, was common to both, as also
was a real talent for intrigue, which enabled these society ladies so far
to conquer the disadvantages of their sex as to become of considerable
importance in affairs. Of such teachers Henrietta was a willing learner and
in some sense an apt pupil. She, too, learned to plot and to scheme, to
play off enemy against enemy, and to attempt to win over a chivalrous foe
by honeyed words. But she never became in any real sense a diplomatist. Her
brain, quick to seize a point of detail and sometimes sagacious in weighing
the claims of alternate courses of action, had not sufficient grasp to take
in the broad outlines of a complicated situation, nor the judicial faculty
which can calmly appraise even values which are personal. It is the
misfortune of the great that they breathe an atmosphere of fictitious
importance which induces a mental malady, whose taint infects all but the
strongest intellects and the largest hearts. From the worst forms of this
disease, as it appears, for instance, in Louis XIV, who at the end of his
life believed himself to be almost superhuman, Henrietta escaped, by the
strong sense of humour which was her father's best legacy to her. However
obsequious her attendance and however regal her robes, she knew at heart
that she was but a woman of flesh and blood as the rest; but the more
subtle workings of the poison of flattery she could not escape, and the
great weakness of her diplomacy--a weakness which that of her husband
shared to the full--was her inability to appreciate that things precious to
her were not necessarily so to other people, and that her friends and her
foes were likely to be influenced by self-interest not largely coloured by
a romantic sympathy with her misfortunes.

Henrietta's regency came to an end before she had much opportunity for
action, for by July her husband was back in London. This is not the place
to tell the story of the disastrous Scotch expedition; it suffices to say
that Charles returned nominally a conqueror,[217] but in reality defeated,
and with the bitter knowledge that he could only overcome his rebellious
subjects in Scotland by asking the help of his discontented people in
England.

Nevertheless, there was an interval of a few months before the next act of
the tragedy was played, and during it were celebrated some of the last of
those splendid festivities for which the Court of the Queen of England was
renowned. A particularly splendid masque, which was played at Whitehall on
January 21st, 16-39/40, deserves mention on account of the tragic
discrepancy between the spirit of triumphant rejoicing and secure
prosperity breathed by it, and on the one hand the discontent which,
outside the brilliantly lighted rooms, was surging through the winter
darkness of the city, and on the other the anxiety which was gnawing at the
heart of some of those who appeared among the gayest and most careless of
the revellers. The masque was got up by the Queen, whose fondness for such
amusements did not decrease with age, and who found in the hard work which
such a task involved a welcome diversion from her anxieties. It bore the
name of _Salmacida Spolia_,[218] and was written by Sir William D'Avenant,
the reputed son of Shakespeare, who had succeeded Ben Jonson as laureate,
and who was specially devoted to Henrietta's service. The scenery and
decorations, so important to the success of a masque, were supplied by
Inigo Jones, who had before now co-operated with D'Avenant, while for the
musical part of the entertainment Lewis Richard, Master of His Majesty's
Musick, was responsible. Henrietta had considerable difficulty with her
troupe,[219] which included not only the King but a number of ladies and
gentlemen of the Court, and great annoyance was caused by Lady Carnarvon,
who showed symptoms of the invading Puritan spirit in refusing to take part
in the masque unless she were assured that the representation would not
take place on a Sunday. However, all difficulties were smoothed over by the
Queen, who was usually compliant in small matters, and the play was a
notable success, though the Earl of Northumberland, who was not acting,
wrote to his sister that "a company of worse faces was never assembled than
the Queen had got together."[220] The royal pair alone might have given the
lie to the Earl's ungallant words. King Charles, whose splendid looks have
entered, through the genius of Van Dyck, into the heritage of the nation,
played his part with the external dignity in which he was never lacking;
while his wife displayed her still abundant charms to great advantage in an
"Amazonian habit of carnation, embroidered with silver, with a plumed Helme
and a Bandricke with an antique Sword hanging by her side, all as rich as
might be." Her attendant ladies were similarly dressed, and it is perhaps
not surprising that the strangeness of these habits was even more admired
than their beauty.

The theme was designed, in reference to recent public events, to flatter
the King, who played the part of Philogenes triumphing over Discord, which,
"a malicious Fury, appears in a storme, and by the Invocation of malignant
spirits proper to her evill use, having already put most of the world into
discord, endeavours to disturb these parts, envying the blessings and
Tranquillity we have long enjoyed."

  "How am I griev'd,"

she cries out,

  "The world should everywhere
  Be vext into a storme save only here,
  Thou over-lucky, too much happy Ile!
  Grow more desirous of this flatt'ring style
  In thy long health can never alter'd be
  But by thy surfets on Felicitie."[221]

After these words, which surely might have been spoken by the lying spirit
in the mouth of the prophets of Ahab, the Queen came forward to be greeted
by an outburst of triumphant loyalty:--

  "But what is she that rules the night
  That kindles Ladies with her light
  And gives to Men the power of sight?
  All those that can her Virtue doubt
  Her mind will in her face advise,
  For through the Casements of her Eyes
    Her Soule is ever looking out.

  "And with its beames, she doth survay
  Our growth in Virtue or decay,
  Still lighting us in Honours way!
  All that are good she did inspire!
  Lovers are chaste, because they know
  It is her will they should be so,
    The valiant take from her their Fire!"

The masque "was generally approved of, specially by all strangers that were
present, to be the noblest and most ingenious that hath been done heere in
that kind." When, in future days, some of the company looked back upon that
evening, its festivities must have seemed to them as one of the jests of
him whom Heine called the Aristophanes of Heaven.

But these revels were only an interlude; Charles was not a man to fiddle
while Rome was burning, and he turned to grapple as best he could with the
problem before him. The country was rushing on to meet its fate: the topic
of the hour was that of the Parliament, to the holding of which the King
was finally persuaded by a new counsellor; Strafford[222] had crossed St.
George's Channel and had entered on the last and most remarkable stage of
his career.

It is thought that when years later Milton drew his portrait of the great
apostate of heaven, he had in his mind this man who was to many the great
apostate of earth: that character of inevitable greatness which is in the
Miltonic Satan is also in the royalist statesman, who scorned the weaker
spirits of his time, much as the fiend despised the weaker spirits of
heaven and hell. Neither Charles nor Henrietta had ever truly loved him.
Greatness disturbs and frightens smaller minds, and the Queen had other
reasons to regard him coldly. He was not handsome (though she noted and
remembered years after his death that he had the most beautiful hands in
the world), he was unversed in the courtier-like arts which she loved, he
was the friend of Spain rather than of France, and above all his policy in
Ireland was strongly anti-Catholic. Nevertheless, experience and trouble
were opening her eyes. Lady Carlisle, Strafford's close friend, had done
something to prepare his way with the Queen, and the sense of common danger
was coming to complete her work.

On April 13th, 1640, the Short Parliament met. Charles, for the first time
for eleven years, stood face to face with the representatives of his
people, representatives for the most part hostile, for the elections had
gone badly, and few of his or the Queen's friends had been returned.
Nevertheless, he was hopeful, for he held what he and perhaps what his
advisers believed to be a trump card. He had probably throughout his reign
been aware that France had not forgotten her ancient alliance with
Scotland. He had recently been reminded in a sufficiently startling manner
that Scotland on her side had an equally long memory. He possessed evidence
of a letter written by the rebellious Scots to the King of France, evidence
on which he acted while Parliament was sitting by sending Lord Loudon and
others of the Scotch Commissioners to the Tower. It was not yet forty years
since the union of the two Crowns. The Scotch were unpopular in England,
and the favour shown to them by the King and Queen was resented. Scotland
and France, whose alliance had more than once embarrassed England, were
both old enemies. It argues no special lack of insight in either Charles or
his wife that they thought the discovery of these practices would lead to a
great revulsion of feeling against the Scots in the minds of the English
Puritans. That it did not do so is a remarkable proof of the enlightened
self-interest of the latter, and of their power of setting a religious and
political bond of union above an antiquated national prejudice.

Meanwhile, in this moment of crisis, what were the special interests and
influences surrounding the Queen? It is hardly too much to say that not one
of them did not contribute in some measure to the final catastrophe.
Henrietta had not desired the presence of Mary de' Medici, but when the
poor old lady arrived, wearied by troubles and journeyings, her filial
heart could not refuse her a warm welcome, and, little by little, the sense
of home and kindred, to which she had been a stranger for so many years,
overcame the reluctancy of independence and expediency. Some of her
happiest hours in these troubled days were spent in her mother's pleasant
rooms at St. James's, chatting about her children and her domestic
concerns. It would have been well had this been all, but the exiled Queen
was not a lady to content herself with the rôle of a devoted grandmother.
She felt that she had an opportunity of recapturing the daughter who had
escaped from her influence, and she used it to the full. Henrietta came to
her for advice in many matters, specially those which concerned religion,
and she even allowed herself to be weaned from the fascinating Madame de
Chevreuse.

That restless lady began to feel herself less comfortable in England soon
after the arrival of the Queen-Mother, for whose coming she had wished, but
who, indeed, had never liked the confidante of Anne of Austria. She tried
her hand first at one scheme then at another, now intriguing for Montagu at
Rome, now aiming higher and attempting to render a striking service to
Spain by bringing about an alliance between Strafford and the Marquis of
Velada; but all the while she had an uncomfortable conviction that her
power over the Queen of England, which at the beginning of her visit had
been considerable, was decreasing. Perhaps Henrietta discovered the
duplicity of the woman "who said much good of Spain, and yet to the Queen
called herself a good Frenchwoman."[223] Certainly she was not very sorry
when, in May, 1640, a rumour that the Duke of Chevreuse was coming to
England frightened his wife, who had no wish to meet him, across the
Channel to Flanders. The Duchess, at her departure, still boasted of the
favour of the English Court, and assured her friends that the Queen had
pressed her to return whenever she felt inclined to do so, an invitation
which Henrietta, who had marked her attitude by giving her a costly jewel
as the pledge of a long farewell, somewhat warmly denied. With more truth
she might have boasted of the brilliancy of the escort which set out with
her from London. At her side were the Marquis of Velada, the Duke of
Valette, another victim of Richelieu, whom Charles, against his better
judgment, had been persuaded to receive at his Court, and, as might have
been expected, the faithful Montagu. These gentlemen left her when eight
miles of the road was traversed, but, by the orders of the King himself,
she was accompanied to the shores of Flanders by the Earl of Newport to
ensure her against any annoyance.

Madame de Chevreuse was gone, and at an opportune moment; but the evil
effects of her sojourn remained, and manifested themselves specially in a
matter to which the Queen gave considerable attention, and which, like
everything else she touched at this moment, turned to her misfortune.

When death had settled the question of Con's candidature she was not
diverted from her attempt to procure a cardinal's hat for one of her
husband's subjects. Her choice was not a happy one. Walter Montagu, since
his conversion to the Catholic Church, may, as Henrietta claimed, have
lived an exemplary life; but he could hardly be considered suitable for
high ecclesiastical preferment. He was, moreover, a man of many enemies.
Charles disliked him so much that, when Sir Robert Ayton died in 1638, he
told his wife that she might have a Catholic for her secretary provided she
did not choose Walter Montagu.[224] Richelieu's opinion of him was such
that he made him the text of his sweeping generalization: "all Englishmen
are untrustworthy." The Cardinal, indeed, wished to see no subject of the
King of England attain to the coveted honour, and he suggested that the
Bishop of Angoulême, who had the supreme merit of being a subject of the
King of France, was the only suitable candidate; but he would have
preferred almost any one to Montagu, for did he not know that that shifty
person, through the mouth of Madame Chevreuse, was promising complete
devotion to the King of Spain in return for support at Rome? The Queen's
persistence in this matter annoyed the Roman authorities. Cardinal
Barberini, in spite of his personal liking for Montagu, never entertained
for a moment the idea of acceding to her request; indeed, he instructed
Rosetti, who had replaced Con as envoy in England, to tell her frankly that
the thing was impossible. It was an unfortunate moment for the question to
have arisen, for not only was it of great importance to avoid friction with
Richelieu, but the time was coming when Henrietta would have other and more
important requests to make to Cardinal Barberini. That observant politician
had his eyes attentively fixed upon the English troubles, as to whose
progress he was kept well informed by Rosetti. The courtly young envoy--he
was barely thirty and of a noble Ferrarese family--had been charmed on his
arrival not only by the kindness of the King and Queen, but by the liberty
which the Catholics enjoyed. It seemed that permanent communications
between the Court of Rome and the Court of England had been established,
"the King approving and the heretics themselves not objecting";[225] but
stern facts soon forced him to correct his first impressions. The feeling
of the nation was rising against the Catholics, and the flame was fanned by
the injudicious conduct of the Queen-Mother, who greatly patronized Rosetti
as she had Con before him. When, in the Short Parliament, Pym voiced the
religious indignation of the people, the "divinity which hedges a King" was
still strong enough to restrain him in some measure when referring to the
Queen of England. No such scruple deterred him in speaking of a foreign
ecclesiastic and of a foreign Queen, the latter of whom was hated, not only
on religious grounds, but as the recipient of large sums of money--as much
£100 per day--which the country could ill afford.

Henrietta was becoming more and more busy with matters of high politics. It
was evident that the Parliament was a failure, but one gleam of brightness
cheered the darkness of its last days. Strafford, exerting to the utmost
his unrivalled powers, was able to win over in some degree the Upper House,
and the Lords by a considerable majority voted that the relief of the
King's necessities should have precedence of the redress of grievances. It
seemed a great victory, and Henrietta, dazzled by this unexpected success,
recognized at last what the man was whom she had slighted. "My Lord
Strafford is the most faithful and capable of my husband's servants,"[226]
she said publicly, with the generosity of praise from which she never
shrank. Nevertheless, there were those, justified by the event, who doubted
the real value of such a service; the spirit of the Commons was not thus to
be broken, and on May 5th the King dissolved the assembly which is known,
from its twenty-three days of existence, as the Short Parliament.

After the breaking of Parliament the deep discontent of the nation burst
forth in riots and in a flood of scandalous pamphlets directed against
unpopular characters. Henrietta, who was believed to have counselled the
dissolution, lost much of the limited popularity she had hitherto enjoyed,
and behind her again the populace saw the sinister figure of her mother
stirring up strife in England as she had in France. Rosetti, who, as the
symbol of the dreaded approximation to popery, was particularly odious, was
thought to be in such danger of personal violence that Mary de' Medici
offered him the shelter of her apartments. He refused, perhaps wisely; for
a few days later a letter was brought to the King threatening to "chase the
Pope and the Devil from St. James, where is lodged the Queene, Mother of
the Queene." Mary, when she heard of this letter, was so frightened that
she refused to go to bed at all the following night, though she was
protected by a guard, captained by the Earl of Holland and Lord Goring,
which had nothing to do, as the threat proved to be one of those empty
insults of which the times were prolific.

Henrietta, who was not by nature easily alarmed, began to appreciate the
seriousness of the pass to which her husband's affairs had come. She was in
bad health, and she seems already to have thought of retiring to her native
land for her confinement, which was imminent;[227] but weakness of body
could not impair the activity of her brain, and at this time she definitely
entered upon that course of action which, perhaps more than any other, has
brought upon her the adverse judgment of posterity, and which, though its
details were unknown to her enemies, injured the very cause which it was
designed to aid. In an evil hour she opened negotiations with the Papacy,
with a view to obtaining money to be used against her husband's subjects.

Since her marriage she had carried on a somewhat frequent correspondence
with the Pope and with Cardinal Barberini, whose kind letters led her to
believe that she was an object of greater importance in their eyes than was
actually the case. She was further drawn to them by the kindness they had
shown to Montagu, who himself was a little led astray by flattering words.
It is significant that he appears at this time as the Queen's chief
adviser. He executed many of the duties of the secretaryship he was not
allowed to hold, and he was delaying a long-meditated journey to Rome,
where he intended to become a Father of the Oratory, to help his royal
mistress in her troubles and perplexities. Even the fidelity of her
servants turned to the Queen's destruction, for a more injudicious adviser
than Montagu could hardly have been found.

There is another actor whose part is more remarkable: Francis Windbank, who
began his career as a disciple of Laud and was to end it a few years later
in the bosom of the Catholic Church, was no free-lance like Montagu, but a
responsible Secretary of State. His personal relations with the Queen do
not seem to have been very close, but he was in constant communication with
her agent in Rome, Sir William Hamilton. As early as the end of 1638 the
latter wrote to one of the Secretaries of State, who may almost certainly
be identified with Windbank, assuring him that the Pope had expressed
himself anxious to contribute money for the Scotch war if there were need
of it. Charles, to whose knowledge this letter came, was exceedingly angry,
as well he may have been, and threatened to remove Hamilton from his post
if he ever lent ear again to such discourse.[228] But Windbank was no whit
abashed. A few months later he held a remarkable conversation with Con,
who, of course, at once reported it to his superiors in Rome. The
level-headed Scotchman, hardly able to believe his ears, listened to the
Secretary of State propounding his views as to the help which the Pope
ought to send to the King of England. "And what is the smallest sum which
would be accepted?" he asked jokingly, wishing to pass the matter off
lightly. "Well," replied Windbank in deadly earnest, "one hundred thousand
pounds is the least that I should call handsome."[229]

It was not until the spring of 1640, when Con had been replaced by Rosetti,
that a further appeal was made to the Pope for assistance. Windbank again
was the intermediary, but the reply of Cardinal Barberini, which was sent
to Rosetti, was communicated not only to him but to the Queen. Henrietta
was a little out of favour in Rome. Not only had her persistence in the
matter of Montagu's promotion caused annoyance, but her intention of
sending Sir Kenelm Digby, who (not unjustly in the light of future events)
was considered an indifferent Catholic, to take the place of Sir William
Hamilton, was a further disservice both to her and to Montagu, who
supported Digby's candidature, and who had written warmly in his favour to
the Roman authorities; but of the Cardinal's feeling towards her Henrietta
was probably quite unaware. It is not known what part, if any, she took in
Windbank's application, but it is likely that she was both grieved and
surprised when she was informed that Cardinal Barberini, in spite of the
sympathy which he felt with the King and Queen of England in their
troubles, could not hold out the hope of any substantial assistance from
the Holy Father unless Charles became a Catholic. None knew better than she
the improbability of such an event. Nevertheless, she only laid aside for a
while the scheme of papal aid, to take it up again at what she considered a
more favourable moment.[230]

She had much to occupy her mind. The summer of 1640 witnessed the
futilities of the second war against the Scots, to which, in foreboding of
spirit, she saw her husband depart. The state of public feeling was growing
worse and worse, and the King's own servants were not faithful to him, so
that one of the most acute observers then in England wrote that affairs had
come to such a pass that "if God does not lend His help we shall see great
confusion and distraction in this kingdom."[231]

When even the captaincy of Strafford had failed to give victory to the
royal armies, there was a general conviction that another Parliament would
be necessary. Charles, following an archaic precedent, summoned a council
of peers to meet him at York, and some of these noblemen, before setting
out from London, paid a visit to Henrietta. They knew well her power, and
they begged that her influence with her husband might be used for the
calling together of the estates of the realm. Mary de' Medici was present
at this interview, and it is said that she put into her daughter's mouth
the words of conciliation which the latter used. The noble visitors
departed, and then the Queen of England went out and selecting a messenger
to whose fidelity she could trust, she bade him bear to the King her
persuasions for the holding of a Parliament.

Her motive for what is in some respects a strange act is clear. Even now
she did not gauge the depths of the discontent of the nation, and with that
hopefulness which was part of her nature she believed that a Parliament,
without imposing intolerable conditions, would vote sufficient money to
enable the King to deal with the menacing Scots. She was mistaken, as she
so often was. If the English Puritans had not called the ancient enemy into
the land, they had at any rate no desire to see the Scotch army go thence
until it had done its part in putting pressure on a King whom they regarded
with a distrust which was becoming hatred.

But there were those to whom Henrietta's act must have seemed, if they were
aware of it, almost an act of desertion. The Catholics, to whom her love
and honour were pledged, dreaded, and with good cause, nothing so much as a
Parliament. Already their condition was deplorable. They suffered not only
from the hatred of the Puritans, but from the terror of the Protestants,
who attempted to propitiate the people by persecution of the common enemy.
Several priests were thrown into prison, and even the courtier Sir Tobie
Matthew, who, though he posed as a layman, was generally believed to be in
holy orders,[232] was arrested on suspicion. The houses of Catholics were
searched, and on one occasion three cart-loads of Catholic books were
publicly burned. "Nevertheless," wrote Montreuil, the French agent in
London, with an acumen revealed by the event, "it is thought that all the
advantage which the Archbishop will get from this is to set the Catholics
against him without improving his position with the Puritans."[233]

In October Charles returned to London, leaving the Scotch army still in the
land, and with a pledge that its expenses should be paid. On November 3rd
he opened at Westminster that historic assembly which is known as the Long
Parliament.

[Footnote 202: Mme de Motteville records how Henrietta told her that
Charles brought the new Scotch liturgy to her, asking her to read it, that
she might see how similar were their religious beliefs.]

[Footnote 203: Among the archives of the Ministère des Affaires Etrangères
is a document dated 1629 enumerating the reasons why it was desirable to
have an agent in Scotland; one reason given is "to keep the Scotch nobility
in their devotion towards the cause of France."--Aff. Etran. Ang., t. 43.
The great importance the French attached to preserving the good-will of the
Scotch is apparent in the French diplomatic literature concerning the Civil
War.]

[Footnote 204: "L'année ne se passera pas que le roi et la reine
d'Angleterre ne se repentent d'avoir refusé les offres que vous leur aves
faites de la part du roy."--Richelieu to Estrades, December, 1637.
Estrades: _Ambassades et Negotiations_ (1718), p. 13.]

[Footnote 205: Digby to Montagu, March 5th, 1638. Aff. Etran. Ang., t. 47.]

[Footnote 206: _Ibid._, March 19th, 1638.]

[Footnote 207: Montagu to Chavigny, February 14th, 1638. Aff. Etran. Ang.,
t. 4.]

[Footnote 208: The Duke of Chevreuse had been made a Knight of the Garter
at the time of the marriage of Charles and Henrietta.]

[Footnote 209: Avenel: _Lettres de Richelieu_, VI, p. 122.]

[Footnote 210: _Histoire de l'entrée de la reyne mere du roy très-chrestien
dans la Grande Bretaigne._ Par le S^r de la Serre, Historiographe de France
(1639).]

[Footnote 211: Montagu to Digby, June, 1638. Aff. Etran. Ang., t. 47.]

[Footnote 212: Con gives the details, Add. MS., 15,391: Salvetti (Add. MS.,
27,962) says that the King asked for the money, but did not formally
authorize the contribution.]

[Footnote 213: Add. MS., 15,392, f. 75.]

[Footnote 214: Green: _Letters of Queen Henrietta Maria_, p. 25.]

[Footnote 215: Except for Herefordshire, the Isle of Wight, Anglesea, and
Merionethshire, among the collectors' names appear those of members of such
well-known Catholic families as the Englefields, the Howards, and the
Chichesters.]

[Footnote 216: The sum is given as £40,000 in _The Life and Death of that
matchless mirror of Magnanimity and Heroick Vertue, Henrietta Maria de
Bourbon_ (1669).]

[Footnote 217: Mme de Motteville says that Henrietta was averse from making
peace with the Scotch, but whether now or after the second Bishops' War
does not appear.]

[Footnote 218: "Salmacida Spolia, a Masque, Presented by the King and
Queenes Majesties, at Whitehall, on Tuesday, January 21st, 1639."]

[Footnote 219: The names of the masquers:--

  The King's Majesty
  Duke of Lennox
  Earle of Carlisle
  Earle of Newport
  Earle of Leimricke
  Lord Russell
  Lord Herbert
  Lord Paget
  Lord Feilding
  Master Russell
  Master Thomas Howard
  The Queenes Majesty
  Dutchesse of Lennox
  Countesse of Carnarvon
  Countesse of Newport
  Countesse of Portland
  Lady Andrew
  Lady Margaret Howard
  Lady Kellymekin
  Lady Francis Howard
  Mistress Carig
  Mistress Nevill]

[Footnote 220: Hist. MSS. Con. Rep. III, p. 79.]

[Footnote 221: Cf. an extract from a letter of M. de Balzac to "M. de
Corznet, gentleman-in-ordinary to the most illustrious Queen of Great
Britain": "If the tempests which threaten the frontiers of Bayou arrive at
us we must think of another way of safetie and resolve (in any case) to
passe the sea and go and dwell in that region of peace and that happie
climate where your divine Princesse reigns."--September 20th, 1636.
_Letters of M. de Balzac_, translated into English by Sir Richard Bahn and
others (1654): a collection of some modern epistles of M. de Balzac, p.
16.]

[Footnote 222: He was made Earl of Strafford January 12th, 1640.]

[Footnote 223: Aff. Etran. Ang., t. 47.]

[Footnote 224: The name of Sir Kenelm Digby was mentioned in connection
with the post, but the Queen's choice fell upon Sir John Winter, a Catholic
gentleman, who was cousin to the Marquis of Worcester.]

[Footnote 225: Father Philip to Barberini: P.R.O. Roman Transcripts.]

[Footnote 226: MS. Français, 15,995, f. 85.]

[Footnote 227: Her son Henry was born July 6th, 1640.]

[Footnote 228: Salvetti. October 22nd, 1638. Add. MS., 27,962.]

[Footnote 229: Add. MS., 15,392, f. 162.]

[Footnote 230: See Rosetti correspondence, P.R.O. Roman Transcripts,
specially Barberini to Rosetti, June 30th, 1640, and Rosetti's answer,
August l0th, 1640. "... de peró quando S. M^{ta} dichiaresse tale
[Catholic] di qua non si guaderebbe a mandarli denari."--Barberini to
Rosetti, June 30th 1640.]

[Footnote 231: Salvetti. September, 1640. Add. MS., 27,962, I, f. 109.]

[Footnote 232: Perhaps justly; among the archives of the See of Westminster
is a certificate of his saying Mass 1630-1; he was thought to be a Jesuit.]

[Footnote 233: Bib. Nat., MS. Français, 15,995.]



CHAPTER VII

THE EVE OF THE WAR

II

  My eyes with tears did uncommanded flow,
  And on my soul hung the dull weight
  Of some intolerable fate.

                              ABRAHAM COWLEY


When the Long Parliament met the eyes of Europe were fixed upon England;
the foreign agents who were resident in London had recognized, almost
before the English themselves, the gravity of the crisis.[234] Such a
crisis could not fail to be of European consequence, for though England had
decayed from the great glory of Elizabeth's reign, and during the last few
years particularly had lost much esteem, yet she was of great importance in
the struggle between France and Spain, each party of which had striven for
so long, and neither quite successfully, to win her as an ally.

It was confidently believed at the time, and on both sides of the Channel,
that the troubles of England and Scotland were fomented by Richelieu. "The
Cardinal de Richelieu," wrote Madame de Motteville, whose account, no
doubt, owed something to Henrietta herself, "had great fear of a
neighbouring King who was powerful and at peace in his dominions, and
following the maxims of a policy which consults self-interest rather than
justice and charity to one's neighbour, he thought it necessary that this
Prince [the King of England] should have trouble in his kingdom."[235]

It is now known that if Richelieu stirred up Charles' rebellious subjects,
it was only in the most secret and indirect way; but certainly he was not
sorry for the Scotch troubles, and his attitude both now and later was a
serious addition to the difficulties of the King of England and his wife,
who were reaping the results of their long and reckless defiance of the
all-powerful Cardinal. As early as 1638 Windbank believed that French
influence was working in Scotland, where, on account of the old alliance
between the two countries, it would have a specially favourable field; but
when he wrote for information to the Earl of Leicester, at that time
ambassador in Paris, he received an indecisive and somewhat petulant reply.
"It would be very difficult to give you my opinion about the Scotch
affair," so ran the letter; "for I am as ignorant about it as if I lived in
Tartary. If it is fomented by France it is by means so secret that it will
only be discovered, with difficulty, by the results."[236]

[Illustration: CARDINAL DE RICHELIEU

FROM A PORTRAIT BY PHILLIPPE DE CHAMPAIGNE]

As time went on, and the troubles developed, these suspicions became more
widespread and vivid, until just before the opening of the Long Parliament
there were imaginative people who believed that an army of thirty thousand
Frenchmen was ready to land in England in favour of the Scotch, while the
more sober-minded contented themselves with the old story of help secretly
given to the rebels. Montreuil saw in all this only machinations of the
Spaniards industriously sowing false reports, that thereby they might
render their enemy odious in the eyes of the English Court.[237]

Henrietta's own relations with Richelieu had not improved,[238] though she
still continued to talk of a journey to France, as, after the birth of
Prince Henry, her health continued very delicate. The residence of the
Queen-Mother in England annoyed the Cardinal as much as had that of Madame
de Chevreuse, and Mary de' Medici's conduct was not such as to propitiate
him. Once, for instance, she allowed a priest connected with the Spanish
Embassy to preach before her, and he improved the occasion by comparing her
sufferings to those of Christ, and by eulogizing Cardinal Bérulle, whose
praise was not likely to be agreeable to Richelieu. Moreover, at this time
Charles was more than usually inclined to the Spanish alliance. He had
thoughts of a Spanish marriage both for his son and his daughter, and
rumours were abroad that if France was supplying money to the rebels, Spain
was doing the same by the Court. It was remarked that when the news came of
the taking of Arras by the armies of France, the King could not bring
himself to receive it warmly, though his wife, who was always a good
Frenchwoman, in spite of Richelieu, expressed lively joy.

She had little in England to cheer her. Not only were her husband's affairs
becoming a nightmare to her, but the looks of hatred which she encountered
as she went abroad in her capital, and the vile calumnies which her enemies
were not ashamed to publish and to scatter broadcast among her people were
the beginning of a martyrdom such as only a woman can know. Added to all
this was the growing conviction that her power was insufficient to protect
those who had no other protection. It must have wrung her heart (though she
knew it to be necessary) to see her mother, who had come to England to be
at peace, deprived of half her allowance, and later reduced to such poverty
as forced her to lessen her establishment and to sell her jewels. She
feared increasingly that she would be obliged to send Rosetti away, and she
felt bitterly the scant respect shown to him when, in the cold of the small
hours of a November morning, he was roused to witness the searching of his
house for proofs of his diplomatic status. It did not make it easier to her
that the leading spirit in this matter, as in a general search of the
houses of Catholics which took place about this time, was Sir Henry Vane,
who owed to her favour his promotion to the position of Secretary of State.
She was learning some early lessons in the world's ingratitude. She knew
that even her personal servants, such as the Capuchin Fathers, were
threatened, and that the English Catholics, who had long looked to her "as
the eyes of a handmaiden look to her mistress," were finding her help of no
avail. Most poignant of all was the knowledge that the strong arm which had
upheld her for so long was failing, and that her husband, with all his
love, was obliged to leave her naked to her enemies. She was yet
unpractised in suffering, and it is no wonder that, despite her high
spirit, her misery was apparent to all.

Parliament had hardly met before Windbank was called up before the House of
Commons, and questioned as to the number of priests and Jesuits in London.
That assembly further brought pressure to bear upon the King, which
resulted in a proclamation banishing Catholics to a certain distance from
London. It was even suggested that new and stricter laws should be made
against the recusants, and thorough-going people recommended that all
Catholics found in a chapel, either that of the Queen or anybody else,
should be immediately seized and hanged. The hatred of the country, and
particularly of the city of London, for anything savouring of Popery was
further shown by the presentation of the Root and Branch petition, which
asked for nothing less than the abolition of Episcopacy in the National
Church. But these vexations, distressing as they were, sank into
insignificance before the new blow which threatened the royal power. On
November 11th Strafford was impeached by Pym of high treason and committed
to the Tower, whence he was only to come out to his death. It was a poor
consolation to the Queen that her old enemy, Laud, the persecutor of the
Catholics, was also thrown into prison, for she had learned to see in him,
if not a friend, at least a political ally.

No blow could have been more crushing than that which at this critical
moment deprived the King and Queen of the services and counsels of their
best friend; but Henrietta was to find herself attacked in more personal
matters, matters which a few months earlier would have seemed to her of
more consequence than any misfortune which could happen to the Viceroy of
Ireland. Experience, however, was teaching her to measure men and things by
another standard than that of personal feeling, though to the end the
lesson would be imperfectly learned. Indeed, in the very next trial she
failed again.

The contribution of the Catholics in 1639 was a matter of common knowledge.
Parliament, which was already exasperated by the Queen's intervention on
behalf of a priest named Goodman who had been condemned to die, and who was
particularly odious to the Puritans as the brother of the Romanizing Bishop
of Gloucester, determined to strike at those through whom it knew that it
could wound Henrietta. No one at this time was nearer to the Queen than
Walter Montagu, who was her confidant and helper in the correspondence
which she was carrying on with the Court of Rome on the subject of
communications between herself and the Pope. Closely associated with him
was Sir Kenelm Digby, whose departure for Rome was rendered impossible
owing to the rancour of the Puritans. Sir John Winter was the Queen's own
private secretary. These three gentlemen were called to the bar of the
House of Commons to answer for their share in the contribution of 1639, and
it was significantly remarked that the two latter were the sons of "Powder
Plotters," who had lost their lives for complicity in that famous treason.

On Montagu and Digby fell the brunt of the attack;[239] the former appeared
rather frightened and said little, but Sir Kenelm, who was gifted with an
amazing flow of speech on every occasion, answered copiously and apparently
candidly. The scene, though in one respect it was tragical enough, was not
without humour. The eloquent knight began by eulogizing his audience, with
some irony, perhaps, as "the gravest and wisest assembly in the whole
world, whose Majesty is so great that it might well disorder his thoughts
and impede his expressions"; nothing of this awe appears, however, in his
speech. He assured the House that the contribution had a very simple
origin, namely, the wish of the Catholics to follow the example of other
loyal subjects who were helping the King in his necessity, that Con was the
chief agent in the matter, on account of his unrivalled acquaintance among
the English Catholics, persons of whom it was a mistake to suppose that he,
Sir Kenelm, had any particular knowledge, and that the chief motive
appealed to was that of gratitude for the partial suspension of the penal
laws. As to the amount collected, he had no precise information. Sir Basil
Brook was the treasurer, and £10,000 had been paid in at one time and £2000
at another.

Sir Kenelm had played his part well. He had said a very little in a great
many words, and he had kept the real originator of the scheme, the King
himself (who must have been a little nervous of the possible revelations of
the garrulous knight), well hidden. Indeed, the principal point upon which
the Commons fixed was the status of Con, as to whom they may well have been
curious, since their imagination had endowed him with alarming powers, and
with three wives all living at the same time. Montagu was closely
cross-questioned on the matter, but all that he would say was that he
believed Con to be a private envoy to the Queen, in spite of the fact that
he was sometimes called a nuncio. Digby airily asserted that he had no
accurate knowledge of the question under discussion, as he had taken pains
to remain ignorant of these dangerous matters. He added, almost as an
afterthought, that once at Whitehall he had heard Rosetti say that he
renounced any jurisdiction of which he might be possessed.

The Queen was in great anxiety. Not only had her name been brought forward
in this affair, but she was being attacked in other ways. It was suggested
that her beautiful chapel at Somerset House should be closed, and that she
should only be permitted the little chapel at Whitehall, which was more
like a private oratory. Wild stories were abroad as to a great design among
the Roman Catholics of the three kingdoms to subvert the Protestant
religion by force, and the terror was so great that some fanatical spirits
proposed that Catholics should be forced to wear a distinctive badge
whenever they left their houses. This absurd proposition was rejected by
the good sense of the many, but even so it was an ominous token of hatred.

The Queen was new to danger, either for herself or for her friends. She
cared a great deal more to avert the wrath of the House of Commons from
herself and from Montagu than for the welfare of the English Catholics, or
even of Rosetti, who, at this time, was not on good terms with Montagu. She
could think of nothing better to do than to send a message to her enemies,
humble in tone and dwelling on the great desire which she had "to employ
her own power to unite the King and the people"; she apologized for the
"great resort to her Chappell at Denmark House," and promised that in the
future she would "be carefull not to exceed that which is convenient and
necessary for the exercise of her religion." She took upon herself the
responsibility of the Catholic contribution, justifying and explaining it
by "her dear and tender affection to the King and the example of other of
His Majesty's subjects," and pleading her ignorance of the law if
inadvertently anything illegal had been done. She completed her submission
by promising to remove Rosetti out of the kingdom "within convenient
time."[240]

The wrath of the English Catholics, who already looked upon the Queen's
proposed journey to France as a threat of desertion, blazed forth at this
surrender. They remembered, no doubt, that their mistress was a princess of
France, the daughter of the heretic Henry of Navarre. Had she merely
permitted the Parliament to wreak its evil will upon the Church of God, it
would have been bad enough; but had she not gone far beyond this, showing
herself ready to execute its persecuting edicts even before they were
promulgated? The House of Commons, on the other hand, was greatly pleased
at the Queen's submission, and her gracious message was "very well taken."
But had that assembly known the hopes with which the discomfited lady was
consoling herself, its satisfaction would hardly have been greater than
that of the Catholics.

One day some weeks earlier Henrietta, in the quiet of her own apartments,
had taken up her pen and, without the knowledge of husband or friend, had
written one of the most remarkable letters ever indited by a Queen of
England.

It was addressed to Cardinal Barberini, and it bore neither date nor name
of the place whence it was written. In it Henrietta poured out her whole
heart. She dwelt upon the sad state of the Catholics, their banishment, the
peril of the priests, the fear lest the harshness of the penal laws, "which
reach even to blood," should be put in force against them. She emphasized
the desperate condition of her husband, which obliged him, who since his
accession had shown his goodwill to the Catholics, and who, indeed, was now
suffering on account of his tenderness to them, to consent to persecution.
After this introduction she came to the gist of her letter, which was
nothing less than a request for a sum of 500,000 crowns, to be used in
winning over the chiefs of the Puritan faction. It was, she said, the only
hope of salvation, "for when the Catholics have once escaped from the
present Parliament, there is everything to hope and nothing to fear in the
future, and the only means to bring this about is that which I
propose."[241] But the greatest secrecy and the greatest promptitude were
necessary. "I ask you very humbly to communicate this to His Holiness, whom
I entreat to consult with you alone; for if the matter became known I
should be lost. I pray him also to send me a reply as quickly as
possible."[242] She did not doubt, she added, that if the response were
favourable the King, her husband, would show his gratitude by favouring the
Catholics even more than he had done in the past. At any rate, whatever the
upshot of the affair, she would have shown her zeal for the good of her
religion.

The letter was finished; but Henrietta, who knew to some extent with what
edged tools she was playing, took up her pen again to add a brief
postscript. "There is no one knows of this yet but His Holiness, you, and
I." After writing this final warning she sealed up the missive and sent it
to the Papal Nuncio in Paris, through whom it reached Rome.

Cardinal Barberini was surprised and somewhat annoyed when he received this
letter. He was already a little displeased with Henrietta, and the simple
arguments which she used had not the influence which she imagined over the
mind of the Protector of England. Moreover, the method of her request was
unfortunate. The Cardinal thought it strange that she should have written
on her own responsibility, without consulting either the accredited agent
of the Papacy, who was at her side, or her own confessor. At first he was
almost inclined to consider the letter a forgery, but he dismissed this
idea in favour of the supposition that the Queen had been persuaded to this
action by some person who sought perhaps to deceive her. He seems to have
suspected that Richelieu had some hand in the matter,[243] and he remarked
significantly in writing to Rosetti that the Queen's letter had been
carried to Paris "by one Forster," an English Catholic believed to be in
the pay of the French Government, who, he doubted not, had given his
employers an opportunity of reading it. Henrietta meanwhile was awaiting in
great anxiety the reply of Barberini, which, when it came at last, was a
disappointment. Again it was intimated that only the conversion of the King
of England would loosen the purse-strings of the Pope and justify the Holy
Father in breaking in on the treasure of the Church stored up in the Castle
of S. Angelo. The promise of toleration for the Catholics which would, it
seems, have been given,[244] was not enough, for, as the Cardinal justly
remarked to Rosetti, that promise had already been made in the secret
articles of the Queen's marriage treaty. Moreover, what security could be
offered that toleration, even if granted, would be permanent in the face of
Parliamentary opposition? Barberini, however, did not wish to be unkind,
and he hoped to soften the hard refusal by instructing Rosetti to tell the
Queen of England that if matters came to the worst he would be willing to
help her to the extent of 15,000 crowns.[245] But neither this promise nor
the many pleasing words which accompanied it availed to save Henrietta from
bitter disappointment, only less bitter, perhaps, than that which she would
have felt had she received the money for which she asked, and had attempted
therewith to bribe John Pym.

But this was not the only negotiation which she was carrying on with the
Holy See. It will be remembered that in her message to the Commons she
promised to remove Rosetti, understanding that his presence was
"distasteful to the kingdom." She was afraid that most unwillingly she
would be obliged to keep her promise. "I cannot sufficiently lament the
pass to which we are come," she wrote to Cardinal Barberini. "I have long
hoped to be able to keep Count Rosetti here, and I have used all sorts of
artifice to do so ... but, at last, there was such an outburst of violence
that there was no means of keeping up our communications except by
promising to remove him."[246] She referred her correspondent to an
accompanying letter written by Montagu to learn the details of a scheme by
which she hoped to make of no effect her promises of submission, and in
spite of her enemies to keep open the communications between England and
Rome.[247] Montagu's letter, which is long and interesting, is less
melancholy in tone than that of the Queen, and shows less of the gnawing
anxiety which was invading her spirit. He even explained cheerfully that
the anti-Catholic promises of the King and Queen had had so good an effect
that affairs seemed in train for "an accommodation to get rid of the Scots,
which is the principal thing that the King ought to regard."[248] As to the
method to be employed for assuring communications, it was similar to that
already practised in Rome, where, in place of Sir Kenelm Digby, a private
Scotchman, by name Robert Pendrick, formerly Hamilton's secretary and a
friend of Con, had been installed as agent. Montagu, however, hoped that,
pending the arrival of an humble substitute, the Queen might be able to
keep Rosetti in England, and, indeed, that the Count might stay "until the
time of her journey to France."

For on this journey she was at last resolved. Her health had not improved,
and it was thought that she was suffering from the common English
complaint, and was going into a decline. Probably she did not fear a rebuff
from France, but she knew that she would have to fight for her departure
with the House of Commons. Another, and perhaps an unexpected, obstacle
presented itself. Mayerne vindicated his Puritanism by certifying that his
royal patient was in no need of change of air, and that her malady was as
much of the mind as of the body--a diagnosis which was probably correct but
highly inconvenient. In this moment of almost universal reprobation, when
even her co-religionists for whom she had done so much looked coldly on
her, Henrietta may have found some consolation in the kindness of a number
of women of London and Westminster, who, in a petition to Parliament
against the proposed journey, not only dwelt upon the loss to commerce
which would follow the removal of the Queen's Court, but added kind words
of her, praising the encouragement she had given to the calling of
Parliament, and saying, with much truth, that since her coming to England
"she hath been an instrument of many acts of mercy and grace to multitudes
of distressed people."

Richelieu's answer to Henrietta's request for the hospitality of France was
another grave disappointment. Never for one moment had the French
Cardinal's vigilant eye been turned from England or its Queen. Madame de
Chevreuse, Mary de' Medici, the Duke of Valette, the inclinations towards a
Spanish alliance, all he had noted, and now was the day of reckoning. Not
even in these closing years of triumph would he admit into France one who
might scheme against his interests. The refusal was absolute, and in vain
did Henrietta send a special agent to press her claims. The Cardinal was
inexorable, and the excellent reasons which he gave for his decision--such
as the certain ruin of the Catholics by the Queen's absence, and the danger
in such desperate circumstances of leaving the country--failed to convince
his correspondent that her request was refused solely for her own sake. So
great was her mortification that she was unable to hide from her servants
the chagrin which she felt that she, a daughter of France, the child of the
great Henry, was refused in her sickness and sorrow the shelter of her
native land.

But there was no time to grieve long over any single annoyance, for trouble
succeeded trouble, one treading fast on the heels of another. Moreover, as
the spring wore on lesser sorrows tended to become swallowed up in the
terrible anxiety as to Strafford's fate. On March 16th it was decided that
he should be tried for high treason; and it struck like an evil omen on the
Queen's heart that on that very day the Lords and Commons agreed to
petition the King for the removal from Court of all Papists, and
particularly of her four chief friends, Sir Kenelm Digby, Sir Tobie
Matthew, Walter Montagu, and Sir John Winter. A few days later the trial
began. It dragged along while, day after day, its course was watched by the
King and Queen of England, who sat in a gallery, closely screened from
curious eyes, looking down on the stern faces below them, and on the
majestic figure of the man who was there to answer for his life. Not all
the persuasions of the Commons could keep the royal couple away. It was the
only thing they could do to encourage their faithful servant. With them sat
their eldest son, the boy of whom it was said that he had been found
weeping because the father who had received three kingdoms as his heritage
would leave him never an one.

It is needless to repeat the story of Strafford's trial: how all turned
upon an alleged plot to bring over Irish troops to subdue England; how it
was found to be impossible to convict him of conduct which could be brought
within the scope of the Treason Act; how his enemies, determined that he
should not escape, turned the impeachment into an attainder. All that is
necessary is to indicate the Queen's action through these weeks of terror
and struggle.

Everything that she could she did to save the man whom once she had
regarded almost as an enemy. Day after day she found opportunity for secret
interviews with the Puritan leaders, in which she offered all (and perhaps
more than all) that it was in her power to give in exchange for Strafford's
life. Evening after evening, when the dusk had fallen, she sallied forth
alone, lighting her steps with a single taper, to seek her foes in their
own quarters.[249] Such efforts deserved success, and she at least believed
that to them was due the remarkable conversion of Lord Denbigh, the husband
of her dear and faithful lady-in-waiting, who, after being one of
Strafford's bitterest opponents, turned round and defended him with all his
ability in the House of Lords.

Nor were these exertions the sum of Henrietta's activities. The marriage
between little Princess Mary and the Prince of Orange, which took place in
the middle of May, bringing as it did the hope of help in money and perhaps
in soldiers, cheered her spirits and roused her to fresh efforts. It was
now that the army plot was formed, the main object of which was to bring up
to London the army which had been raised against the Scots, and by means of
it to overpower Parliament and to release Strafford.

The plot seems to have originated with two soldiers, the younger Goring and
an officer named Wilmot. These two separately conceived the idea of turning
the discontent of the army, whose wages had not been paid, to the profit of
the King. Charles and Henrietta, who were consulted, thought that the best
plan would be to endeavour to bring about an understanding between the two
officers, each of whom wished to be commander-in-chief. The difficult task
was assigned to Henry Jermyn, whose gentle manners made him specially
suited to such a mission. But then the Queen's heart began to fail her. She
knew only too well the danger of meddling with such matters, and she was
greatly attached to Jermyn, who was, besides, one of the last of her
faithful servants left to her; for Windbank, Montagu, and many another had
been forced to find safety in flight. "If Jermyn too is lost, we shall be
left without friends," she said piteously to her husband. Charles
considered deeply for some time, for he was struck by this argument; but in
the end he said that he thought the risk worth running, and Jermyn, whose
fidelity was unimpeachable, was asked to undertake the dangerous mission.

Henrietta's courage was indeed giving way. The insults of the mob, the
undisguised hatred of the Puritans whom she believed about to impeach her
of high treason, the wild rumours afloat which culminated in the report of
an imminent French invasion (this time in the royal interest), terrified
her so much that, in spite of her proud boasts of a few days earlier that
she was the daughter of a father who had never learned to run away, she
determined to leave London for Portsmouth. She was only stayed by the
entreaties of the French agent in London, of the Bishop of Angoulême, and
of Father Philip. At Portsmouth was not only the governor, the younger
Goring, but Henry Jermyn, and the Queen's precipitate flight would have
given colour to the scandals which her enemies were industriously
spreading, and to gain evidence for which they did not scruple to
cross-question even her ladies of the bedchamber.

In London, therefore, Henrietta remained to hear that same day that the
army plot, which was already suspected by Pym, had been betrayed by Goring,
whom she trusted almost beyond any of her servants.[250] Neither he nor
Wilmot could reconcile himself to giving up the first place, and the
former, goaded by ambition, opened the whole matter to Parliament. Henry
Percy, who was also concerned in the affair, fled, leaving a letter for his
brother, the Earl of Northumberland, which was read before Parliament. In
spite of the closure of the ports, he managed, after considerable
difficulty, to reach France, while others of the conspirators, among whom
were two poets, D'Avenant and Suckling, made good their escape. Henry
Jermyn ran perhaps the greatest risk. He had set off for Portsmouth at the
Queen's request, knowing that the plot was betrayed, but unwitting that
Goring was the traitor. When he reached his destination he was asked
wonderingly why he had come.

"In obedience to His Majesty's commands," he replied. Goring looked sadly
at his friend. "You have nothing to fear," he said at last, "either for
yourself or for me, for I have sufficient credit to save you. I am sorry to
have done wrong, but I will atone for it with regard to you, and I will die
rather than fail you."

Jermyn perhaps distrusted the man who had already betrayed so grave a
trust; but in this case Goring was as good as his word. He put the orders
sent down by Parliament into his pocket, and helped his friend to escape in
a small boat which took him to join the other exiles in France.

That which the Queen had feared had come upon her, and she was left almost
without friends. Besides, she winced as at the lash of a whip when she
heard the vile attacks upon her honour.[251] But again bad griefs were to
be swallowed up by worse.

For the army plot sealed Strafford's fate. The misgivings of the Puritans
were becoming terror as they appreciated that the King of England would
shrink from no means which might make him supreme. The more well-informed
among them knew that Richelieu wished them well, but there were those who
saw in the welcome which the Cardinal extended to the English exiles an
indication that the influence of France would be thrown on the side of the
King, and there were rumours abroad that Strafford, once rescued from
prison, would find a refuge across the Channel. The Earl's position was
rendered still worse when the Lieutenant of the Tower declared that he had
been offered a large bribe to favour his prisoner's escape. There was now
no room for compromise. Strafford had to pay the penalty of the greatness
which made him feared, and on May 8th, the very day on which the army plot
became known, the Bill of Attainder passed both Houses of Parliament.

Then followed four agonizing days. The King, who had given Strafford a
solemn promise that he should not be harmed, became more and more terrified
(not so much for himself as for those whom he loved, for he was no coward)
as he realized the implacability of those who sought his faithful servant's
life. On the other hand, he felt the shame of the descendant of a long line
of kings at the very thought of breaking his royal pledge. In his struggle
he knew not where to turn for help or comfort. Strafford himself, imitating
the heroic conduct of the simple priest John Goodman, wrote to Charles,
begging to die rather than that his safety should prejudice the King's
interests. As for Henrietta, at this crisis she had no strength to
supplement her husband's weakness. She sat shivering at Whitehall, feeling
around her the atmosphere of hatred, and hearing at last that most terrible
of all sounds, the howling of an infuriated mob. Long Charles hesitated,
but at last he dared do so no longer, for he believed that his wife and his
children would pay the ransom of Strafford. Impelled by fear, justified by
subtle counsellors, he seized his pen and signed the fatal death-warrant;
"and in signing it he signed his own,"[252] commented a Frenchman many
years later.

Strafford did not fear death. His state of health was such that probably in
any case his remaining days would have been few. With one bitter comment,
"Put not your trust in princes," he turned resolutely to the regulation of
his temporal affairs and to preparation for death. His last day on earth
was troubled by the well-meant solicitude of certain Catholics who, by some
means, gained access to him, but when they found their efforts unavailing
they departed, and he was left in peace. The fatal twelfth of May dawned.
He was led out to meet first the blessing of his fellow-prisoner,
Archbishop Laud, and then the angry faces of the populace, which he
despised to the end, but to which was passing the power he was unable to
hold. There were a few moments of tension, of waiting for death; then the
axe fell, and the one man who might have saved Charles' throne was for ever
beyond the reach of warring factions. "They have committed murder with the
sword of justice,"[253] cried out one Englishman, expressing the silent
thoughts of others less courageous than himself.

"The people," commented Salvetti, who was not unworthy to be the countryman
of Machiavelli, "now that it knows its own strength, and that nothing is
denied to it, will not stop here, but will claim more."[254] Indeed, the
revolution came on apace. The power was in the hands of Pym and his
friends, and behind them were the London mob and the Scotch army. The
abolition of the Star Chamber and High Commission Courts was only one among
the many blows which were shattering Charles' throne.

These were some of the darkest days of Henrietta's life. She was fully
aroused from the levity of her youth, but at this first touch of adversity
she had not learned the courage and resignation of later times. Strafford
had no truer mourner than she, unless, indeed, it were her husband. Then
there were griefs more personal to herself. Some of those whom she had most
trusted, such as Lady Carlisle and the Earl of Holland, turned against her,
and she still believed that her enemies meant to humiliate her by an
impeachment. She had to see the Catholics hated and persecuted as they had
not been since the days of the Powder Plot, finding only a sorry
consolation in the heroism which kept most of the priests at their post of
danger. It added to her misery that she had to bear it alone. Even the
Bishop of Angoulême left his royal mistress, for somewhat
characteristically he discovered the urgent need of his presence in Paris.
One of a braver spirit remained as ever faithful, but Father Philip, who
was specially obnoxious to the Puritans, because being a subject of the
King of England he came within the scope of the recusancy laws, found his
constancy rewarded by a severe interrogation before the House of Commons
and a short sojourn in the Tower. It was, however, no doubt a satisfaction,
both to him and to the Queen, that Richelieu, whose name had been freely
mentioned in the examination, expressed himself much annoyed at the liberty
which the leaders of Parliament had taken.[255]

And in July Henrietta lost another friend. Rosetti had stayed, with
admirable courage and almost beyond the limit of safety, but now the
condition of affairs was such that the Queen would not even permit
Piombini, the humble agent who had been sent to replace him, to remain in
England. She and her husband, with desperation in their hearts, held a last
interview with the papal envoy. Charles, who in Rosetti's words spoke of
the injuries which religion was receiving, "not as a heretic king, but as a
Catholic,"[256] was by this time ready to promise, in return for help from
the Pope, even liberty of conscience in the three kingdoms, together with
the extirpation of Puritanism, thus leaving the field to the Catholics and
the Protestants. He was, moreover, willing to forgo any help from Rome
until the free exercise of the Catholic religion had been granted in
Ireland. These terms, countersigned by his own royal hand, were to be
carried across the sea by Mary de' Medici, who was on the point of leaving
England, and delivered to Rosetti, who, by that time, would be on the way
to Rome.

But the King of England humiliated himself in vain. Rosetti and those who
directed him were aware of both the circumstances and the character of the
man with whom they had to deal. They knew that only one thing could
irrevocably bind Charles to the Catholic cause, and to the performance of
his difficult promise. "The true way of getting help from the Holy See,"
said Rosetti severely, "is the conversion of the King." It was of no avail
that Henrietta hastily asserted that such a step was impossible, not from
any dislike on her husband's part to their holy religion, but because it
would cost him his crown. The King's acts, and not his motives, were the
envoy's concern, and he offered no comment on this wifely explanation, but
hastened to bid the Queen farewell. He left England immediately, and
Henrietta never saw him again.

A month later, in the August of this sad summer, Henrietta wrote a letter
to her sister Christine, which is the best description of the despair which
was taking possession of her. "I swear to you," so it runs, "that I am
almost mad with the sudden change in my fortunes. From the highest pitch of
contentment I am fallen into every kind of misery which affects not only me
but others. The sufferings of the poor Catholics and of others who are the
servants of my lord the King touch me as sensibly as can any personal
sorrow. Imagine what I feel to see the King's power taken from him, the
Catholics persecuted, the priests hanged, the persons devoted to us removed
and pursued for their lives because they served the King. As for myself, I
am kept as a prisoner, so that they will not even permit me to follow the
King, who is going to Scotland." She goes on to speak of one of the chief
aggravations of her misery, the utter helplessness which she felt. "You
have had troubles enough," she exclaims to her sister, "but at least you
were able to do something to escape them; while we, we have to sit with our
arms folded, quite unable to help ourselves. I know well," she adds sadly,
commenting on her little daughter's marriage, which might have seemed
rather beneath the dignity of the eldest daughter of England, "I know well
that it is not kingdoms that give contentment, and that kings are as
unhappy and sometimes more so than other people."[257]

During the King's absence in Scotland Henrietta retired to her country
house at Oatlands, to find what consolation she could in the society of her
children. Even there she was not at peace. The leaders of the Parliamentary
party, wishing to gain possession of the young Princes, requested that they
might be placed in their hands, for the benefit of their education, and
because they feared that the Queen, their mother, would make them Papists.
"You are mistaken," replied Henrietta proudly. "The Princes have their
tutors and governors to teach them all that is proper, and I shall not make
them Papists, for I know that that is not the wish of the King."
Nevertheless she was so alarmed at this request that she sent the children
to another country house, whence they came to visit her but occasionally.
She believed that she herself was in some danger of being carried off by
her enemies; at least, that they wished her to think so, in order to drive
her from the kingdom. After a while she left Oatlands and went to Hampton
Court, where she was in greater safety, and where she was able to work for
her husband by winning over some doubtful spirits, of whom the chief was
the Lord Mayor of London.

Thus the summer wore on, and with the autumn came another blow. In the
early days of November, while Charles was still in Scotland, London was
startled by the news of the sudden and horrible rebellion of the
long-oppressed Irish Catholics, who rose to avenge upon their Protestant
neighbours the wrongs of generations. Stories, not unfounded, of the
reckless barbarity of the rebels were in the mouth of every Englishman, and
the victorious Puritans found in them an easy means of fanning the popular
hatred of the Catholics, which was already at white heat. "This is what
they have done in Ireland, this is what they would do, if they had the
chance, in England," was a ready and convincing argument. This rebellion
added another difficulty to those which were overwhelming the King and
Queen; for not only did it thus give a handle to their enemies, but there
were those who did not scruple to insinuate that the Queen was concerned in
it.

Later in the same month Charles came home, and he had one day of pleasure
and triumph, for the city of London, partly through the exertions of the
Queen, gave him a royal welcome, which seemed like the beginning of better
things. It was, however, but a passing gleam of hope. The presentation on
December 1st of the Grand Remonstrance, with its sombre catalogue of
grievances, with its acrid religious and political tone, marked another act
of the tragedy. Then at the beginning of the New Year (1642) came the
King's fatal attempt to arrest five members[258] of the House of Commons
and one member of the House of Lords, whom he knew to have been in
communication with the Scots, and whom on this ground he wished to impeach
for the crime of high treason.

The House of Commons showed a disposition to resist, and on January 4th
Charles went down himself to seize the offending members. He had concerted
his plan overnight with his wife and with George Digby,[259] a cousin of
Sir Kenelm, one of those who had rallied to the royal cause at the time of
Strafford's trial, and who henceforward appears among the Queen's special
friends. With morning the King's spirit quailed before the task he had
undertaken, but Henrietta, whose anger was roused because she believed that
these ringleaders of the Commons intended to impeach her, would allow no
shrinking. "Go, poltroon, pull the ears of these rogues, or never see me
again," she cried, with that touch of insolent scorn into which her
husband's weakness or scruples sometimes betrayed her. As ever, Charles was
unable to stand against her stronger will. He took her in his arms,
assuring her that in an hour's time he would come back master of his foes;
and so he left her and went to his destruction. She awaited his return in
the highest spirits, thinking that now, at last, by one brilliant _coup_
her troubles would be ended. She continually consulted her watch, as she
listened eagerly for the footsteps of a messenger. At last she could
contain herself no longer. Lady Carlisle, who probably gathered that some
great matter was stirring, came into the Queen's private room to be greeted
with an excited exclamation, "Rejoice, for now I hope the King is master in
his kingdom," and to be told the very names of the intended victims. Lady
Carlisle showed no surprise or annoyance. She quietly left the room and
wrote a note to Pym, with the consequence that Charles, who had been
delayed, entered the House of Commons to find, in his own words, "the birds
flown." Henrietta, when she discovered the Countess' treachery, reproached
herself most bitterly for her failure to keep silence, and confessed her
fault freely to her husband, who as freely forgave it. But, culpable as she
was, it is probable that her indiscretion did little harm. Her real fault
she could not appreciate. It was Charles' attempt to seize the leaders of
Parliament, not his failure in so doing, which precipitated the revolution.

Henceforward there was no hope of averting the revolution. Charles and
Henrietta had to face the wrath of their people, and they knew that they
were alone. The Pope, from whom they had hoped so much, left them to their
fate, and Richelieu, though his attitude had been sometimes a little
ambiguous, was the friend of their foes, and felt towards them an hostility
the result of the history of the last fifteen years, which was a continual
encouragement to those who were arrayed against them. It is true that many
Englishmen, terrified at the extremes to which the Puritans were rushing,
rallied round the King,[260] seeing in him, as he ever saw in himself, the
defender of the ancient constitution; but even so the horizon was dark, and
it was to grow darker to the end. "A northern King shall reign," ran the
prophecy of Paul Grebner, who was in England in the great days of
Elizabeth, "Charles by name, who shall take to wife Mary of the Popish
religion, whereupon he shall be a most unfortunate Prince."[261]

[Footnote 234: See particularly the dispatches of Montreuil (MS. Français,
15,995) and Salvetti (Add. MS., 27,962), and Rosetti's remark in a letter
to Cardinal Barberini (August 10th, 1640) that if something were not done
the Puritans would so increase "che metteranno un giorno in pericolo di
distruggere la monarchia di Inghilterra!"--Roman Transcripts P.R.O.]

[Footnote 235: Mme de Motteville: _Mémoires_ (1783), I, 244. Cf. Montglas:
_Mémoires_ (1727), t. II, p. 67. "Il [Richelieu] avoit toujours des sommes
d'argent entre les mains pour distribuer à l'insu de tout le monde à gens
inconnus qui faisoient ensuite des effets mervellieux qui surprenoient tout
le monde: comme depuis par la guerre civile d'Angleterre dont il étoit
auteur et qu'il fomentoit pour empêcher les Anglois jaloux de la prosperité
de la France de traverser ses desseins."]

[Footnote 236: Aff. Etran. Ang., t. 47.]

[Footnote 237: MS. Français, 15,995.]

[Footnote 238: Bellièvre, the French ambassador in England, wrote, in
August, 1639, of a _femme de chambre_ of the Queen who was going to France,
that she was "très bien sans l'esprit de la Reine sa maitresse."--Aff.
Etran. Ang., t. 47.]

[Footnote 239: The following account is from a private letter written by a
Catholic: "Mr. Montague and Sir Kenelme appeared, the former said little
but what was barely necessary to answer their interrogations which were
about superiours of orders engaged in that business and his answers were
soe sparing and wary that they told him he squiborated with them and
co[~m]anded him next day to attend again. The latter spake soe home and soe
frankly as he left them little to saye against him but to co[~m]and his
attendance the next daye: the su[~m]e of what he said was being the Scotts
were declared rebells by the Kinge and Counsell his Ma^{tie} actively in
the field against them, that all the Nobility, Counsell, Bishops, Judges
and Innes of Court having contributed voluntarily to the warre, he could
make noe doubt but hee and all Catholickes were obliged to followe their
examples, and this the rather because her Ma^{tie} was pleased to aske
parte of all that his Ma^{tie} might have taken without askinge such being
the condition of Catholickes in England whereof he confessed himselfe to be
one."--Archives of See of Westminster.]

[Footnote 240: The Queen's message to the House of Commons is printed in
Green: _Letters of Queen Henrietta Maria_, p. 36.]

[Footnote 241: P.R.O. Roman Transcripts. See Appendix, No. II.]

[Footnote 242: P.R.O. Roman Transcripts. See Appendix No. II.]

[Footnote 243: Barberini also refers to the reports which were about
concerning the complicity of France in the Scotch rebellion.]

[Footnote 244: It is probable that the offer was made by the Queen alone at
this time, as Barberini says that security from the Parliament or in some
other way would be necessary. "Non parendo bastante la promessa della
Regina."--Barberini to Rosetti, February l6th, 1641. P.R.O. Roman
Transcripts.]

[Footnote 245: The tenor of the Cardinal's answer is gathered from his
letter to Rosetti. P.R.O. Roman Transcripts.]

[Footnote 246: P.R.O. Roman Transcripts. Henrietta Maria to Barberini,
February 6th, 1641.]

[Footnote 247: "Je vous remest à Montagu pour faire savoir le particulier
de tout et les moyens que je propose pour continuer l'intelligence ce que
je desire passionement."--Henrietta Maria to Barberini, February 6th, 1641.
P.R.O. Roman Transcripts.]

[Footnote 248: P.R.O. Roman Transcripts. Walter Montagu to Barberini,
February 6th, 1641.]

[Footnote 249: This statement rests on the authority of Mme de Motteville.
It seems incredible that the Queen went out alone into the street; it is
probable that she went to the apartments of noblemen living in the palace.]

[Footnote 250: "Cette princesse dict à plusieurs personnes qu'elle n'avoit
que Mr. Goring et son fils en qui elle se pût asseurer si les Escossais
continuent leur manche en Angleterre." April 18th, 1641. MS. Français,
15,995, f. 226.]

[Footnote 251: "Che la ferisce al vivo."--Salvetti. Add. MS., 27,962, I, f.
232.]

[Footnote 252: François Faure, in his funeral sermon on Henrietta Maria.
Mme de Motteville in her memoirs makes almost the same remark (ed. 1783).
I, 261.]

[Footnote 253: Diurnall Occurrences, May, 1641.]

[Footnote 254: Add. MS., 27,962, I, f. 233. Cf. the remark of Giustiani,
May 24th, 1641: "Li piu savii pero pronosticano a piena bocca che l'habbi
ben tosto a reduirsi questa monarchia a governo interamente
democratica."--P.R.O. Venetian Transcripts.]

[Footnote 255: A little later (October 30th, 1641) the French ambassador in
England, remembering that Father Philip belonged to the anti-Richelieu
party, wrote asking if he should work for his "l'esloignement." Aff. Etran.
Ang., t. 48.]

[Footnote 256: Charles left the room after a few words with Rosetti,
leaving his wife to make the offers described above, but there is no reason
to doubt that she had his authority.]

[Footnote 257: _Lettres de Henriette Marie à sa soeur Christine_, August
8th, 1641, pp. 57-9.]

[Footnote 258: Pym, Hampden, Haselrig, Holles, Strode, in the Commons; in
the Lords, Lord Kimbolton, the brother of Walter Montagu, who had been the
King's personal friend and had accompanied him to Spain in 1624.]

[Footnote 259: George Lord Digby, eldest son of the Earl of Bristol.]

[Footnote 260: The narrow majority by which the Grand Remonstrance passed
the House of Commons marked the formation of the constitutional Royalist
party.]

[Footnote 261: This version is a corruption of the real prophecy of
Grebner, which was contained in a book given by him to Elizabeth and by
Elizabeth to Trinity College, Cambridge. See "Monarchy or no Monarchy in
England: Grebner his prophecy by William Lilly, student in Astrology"
(1651).]



CHAPTER VIII

THE QUEEN AND THE WAR

I

  'Tis time to leave the books in dust,
  And oil the unused armour's rust,
      Removing from the wall
      The corselet of the hall.

                               ANDREW MARVELL


It would be impossible, within the limits of these studies, to give even a
brief outline of the events of that momentous period of our history known
as the Civil War. All that can be attempted is to indicate the various
activities of Henrietta Maria in connection with it.

With the knowledge that a struggle was inevitable a change came over the
Queen's spirit. As long as an accommodation seemed possible she had shown,
certainly from time to time, some moderation and some desire to propitiate
her enemies, but it seemed to her that the demands of Parliament were
unreasonable, and that, in fact, when she spoke of peace her foes made them
ready for battle. There was no way through the impasse, for they, on their
side, were of just the same opinion. Thenceforward her tactics were
different. As she had opposed an ignominious peace with the Scotch rebels,
so now she was an advocate of no compromise. Throwing herself with all the
energy of her nature--she could never do anything by halves, said one who
knew her well[262]--into her husband's cause, she took her place among the
most active members of the royalist party. Gone was the Queen of love and
beauty, the gentle lady whose interests were those of the drawing-room, the
nursery, and the chapel. Gone even was the Queen of tears, who sat cowering
in London on the eve of the war. Instead is seen a woman stern and
determined, brushing aside concessions and half-measures with undisguised
scorn, leaving without a sigh the luxuries in which from her cradle she had
been lapped, and in which she had shown an artistic and sensuous delight,
posting over land and sea, regardless of comfort, of health, of life
itself, to bring succour to her husband. The daughter of Henry IV had risen
to the measure of her likeness to her great father.

Henrietta set out for Holland in February, 1642. The ostensible reason of
her journey was to escort her daughter Mary, who was only ten years old, to
her husband, the Prince of Orange. The real reason was to raise such sums
of money and to collect such quantities of arms and ammunition as she could
obtain on the security of the treasures which she took with her, her own
jewels and those of the Crown of England.

After a stormy crossing, which resulted in the loss of the chapel vessels
and of the servants' clothes, Henrietta was able to gather round her on the
soil of Holland her small household. It included Lord Goring, Lady Denbigh,
Lady Roxburgh, who had been the little princesses' governess, and Father
Philip, who was accompanied by one of his old rivals of the Capuchin Order.
The storm-tossed exiles were met at the coast by Henry, Prince of Orange,
who, anxious to give due honour to his son's bride and mother-in-law,
welcomed the sorrowful Queen with a "brief and succinct speech," running to
a length of three and a half closely printed quarto pages, and couched in a
style of inflated flattery[263] which, sad as she was, must have taxed
Henrietta's gravity to listen to. She replied, however, with great decorum
that the Prince appeared to her "the god of eloquence," after which she and
her little daughter were royally feasted in the palace at The Hague.

Nevertheless, a welcome which savoured of absurdity was better than
"greetings where no kindness is." In the Dutch capital Henrietta found her
husband's sister, Elizabeth, Queen of Bohemia, who was living there in
exile. This lady, who had taken an accurate measure of her sister-in-law's
influence over her brother, held her in the cool esteem with which
relatives by marriage are frequently regarded, and had no real cordiality
to show to the woman who was beginning to tread the Via Dolorosa her own
feet had trodden so long. It happened, besides, that just at this time
parties in Holland reproduced in miniature those of England. The House of
Orange clung to the alliance with the House of Stuart, but the wealthy
burgesses of Amsterdam and The Hague, who were democratic and republican in
their views, had more sympathy with those who were fighting the battle of
liberty across the waters of the North Sea. They showed Henrietta little
kindness and scant courtesy. They gave her hints, which she refused to
take, that they would be glad to see the last of her. They treated her with
none of the deference due to her rank. A sturdy Dutch burgher would stride
into her presence without removing his hat, sit down beside her and enter
into conversation with her as if she were a fellow-townsman whom he had met
in the street; or, perhaps, if he could not think of anything to say, would
turn on his heel and go away without stopping to salute the Queen of
England, all which amazing manners Henrietta, whose sense of humour never
deserted her, carefully noted and described years afterward to Madame de
Motteville.[264]

But in spite of hostility the Queen's work prospered. She kept her daughter
with her, while the boy-husband pursued the studies suitable to his age and
rank; but she devoted her chief energies to raising money, a task in which
she experienced some difficulty, as reports were circulated that she had
carried off the crown jewels without the King's consent. She was, moreover,
carefully watched, both by her unwilling hosts and by spies of the
Parliament; but, nevertheless, she managed to sell or pawn some of her
store, though at exorbitant rates, for, as she wrote to her husband, no
sooner was it known that the King of England was in need of money than the
usurers and merchants "keep their foot on our throat." Parliament issued a
proclamation forbidding any of the "traitors" to approach the person of the
Queen; but, nevertheless, her friends came not without the connivance of
the Prince of Orange, who allowed two of them to lie at his own lodgings.
George Digby and Henry Jermyn hastened to her side, and she was cheered by
the arrival from France of another old friend from whom she had parted the
year before in fear and distress.

Walter Montagu, after his hasty flight from England, had been received with
rather unexpected kindness by Richelieu. He spent, however, most of his
exile at Pontoise, where he made friends with Mother Jeanne Séguier,[265] a
lady who combined the professions of a Carmelite nun and of a political
intriguer, and to whom he probably owed an acquaintance with the rising
Mazarin, which was rapidly ripening into friendship. But, in spite of the
seduction of French affairs, he did not forget the lady to whom his
allegiance was pledged; and in the late spring of 1642 he hurried to
Holland to give advice in matters where his intimate knowledge of the
French Court was invaluable.

For Henrietta's eyes were turning to her native land as a possible refuge
in case of the worst. She had wished to go to Cologne, where her poor old
mother lay sick to death; but her masters in Holland forbade her. Ireland,
which had been suggested, seemed "a strange place"; so sometimes she
thought she would go to her beloved nuns in the Faubourg S. Jacques, and
there, where she had been so happy, hide her humiliated head in case of her
husband's discomfiture. She knew that Richelieu hated her, and she deeply
resented the attitude taken up by the French ambassador in London; but she
thought, and thought justly, that Louis XIII, or rather the Cardinal, would
not, for very shame, refuse her, a daughter of France, an asylum in the
extremity to which her affairs had come. Her Grand Almoner, Du Perron, who
had not felt it necessary to risk himself in England again, wrote from
Paris that she would be given entertainment in France in case of need. He
also gave the welcome news that he was coming to see her on behalf of her
brother the King, on receiving which intelligence her elastic spirits rose
high with hope, so that she wrote friendly letters both to the great
Cardinal himself and to Mazarin, with whom Montagu had smoothed her way.

It was a comfort to feel that she had an assured retreat, for the news from
England became more and more exciting. The setting up of the King's
standard at Nottingham on August 22nd, 1642, made the war a reality. The
first blood shed in civil strife since the battle of Bosworth was drawn at
Powick Bridge on September 23rd, 1642. On October 23rd the first regular
engagement between the rival armies took place at Edgehill.

The Queen watched the course of events with painful and unremitting
anxiety. Nor was she a mere spectator. There yet exists the remarkable
series of letters[266] which she addressed from Holland, some written by
her own hand, some by that of a secretary, probably Henry Jermyn, to her
husband. In them, more clearly than anywhere else, we see the working of
Henrietta's fierce and determined mind at this crisis. How she urged
Charles on, against the advice of more moderate counsellors, to take Hull
by force, though Parliament had not begun hostilities. "Is it not beginning
to put persons into it against your will?"[267] How she wished she were in
the place of her son James, who was in that town. "I would have flung the
rascal over the walls, or he should have done the same thing to me."[268]
How she entreated and almost commanded the King to make no accommodation
which would abate by one jot or tittle his royal power,[269] and how she
threatened, in case he did not take her advice, to go to France instead of
returning to England, "for to die of consumption of royalty is a death
which I cannot endure, having found by experience the malady to be too
insupportable."[270] How she exhorted him to take good heed that their
children did not fall into the hands of the enemy, and to be faithful to
the few friends whom she really trusted. It is evident that she was no wise
guide for her unhappy husband, whose vacillations, born of a glimmering
perception of the position of a constitutional King, roused her to scorn
and almost to fury. She cannot be acquitted of having done all that lay in
her power (which was much) to widen the breach between the King and his
subjects in these early and critical days. Hers was the stronger spirit,
and she knew it. The tone of her letters to "le roy monseigneur," if always
loving is often peremptory, and sometimes even dictatorial, while she does
not hesitate to show her contempt for his lack of decision and promptitude.
She is ever exhorting him to courage, to energy, to vengeance. The day of
mercy is gone, and it is time to give place to justice. Even her
benedictions end in curses such as the Puritans excelled in heaping on the
heads of their enemies and those of the Lord.[271] She had not for nothing
sat at the feet of Richelieu. "Charles, be a King," is the burden of all
her advice.

In these letters to her struggling husband Henrietta seldom allows herself
to give way; but the softer side of her nature, though often obscured by
sterner elements, never wholly disappeared. "Pray to God for me," she wrote
in her pain to Madame S. Georges; "for be assured there is not a more
wretched creature in this world than I, separated from the King my lord,
from my children, out of my country, and without hope of returning thence,
except at imminent peril, abandoned by all the world, unless God assist me,
and the good prayers of my friends, among whom I number you."[272]

But such temporary despondency was drowned in work. Henrietta had too much
to do, raising money, not only in Holland but in Denmark, sending arms and
accoutrements into England, and keeping the Prince of Orange in a good
temper, to have much time for low spirits. Towards the end of 1642 she had
raised such sums of money as the amount of her resources and the caution of
her customers permitted.[273] The state of affairs in England was not very
promising, but nothing could keep her from her husband when she could be at
his side with honour to herself and advantage to him. For danger she cared
little, but various delays occurred, and it was not until the end of the
following January, when she had been almost a year in the land where she
had intended but a short stay, that she set sail for England.

[Illustration: THE QUEEN'S DEPARTURE FROM HOLLAND

FROM AN ENGRAVING]

This attempted journey was one of the stormiest incidents of Henrietta's
stormy career. Hardly had she set sail, accompanied by eleven vessels, when
(by the agency of the devil, as some thought)[274] "the wind turned
contrary, and the greatest storme that hath been seene this many a
yeere"[275] arose. Nine days the Queen tossed upon the waves of the North
Sea, lashed, as were all her ladies, into a narrow berth. The misery of the
small, stuffy cabin was indescribable, and worse than bodily discomfort was
the continual fear of death, which was so menacing that the Queen and the
other Catholics on board, throwing aside their natural reticence on such
matters, confessed their sins in a loud voice, which, perhaps, in the din
of the storm, was necessary to the priest's hearing. It is said that the
horror of the scene was so great that some of the sailors threw themselves
into the sea. Henrietta believed that her last hour was come, and, as she
confessed later, "a storm of nine days is a very frightful thing."[276] But
the first alarm over, she reflected that after all there was little at
present to make her cling to life, and she rallied her courage so
effectually as to be able to derive amusement from the ridiculous incidents
which never fail to occur on a storm-tossed vessel, while she reassured her
terrified ladies by telling them that queens were never drowned.

At last, after getting tantalizingly near to Newcastle-on-Tyne, the boat
was tossed back on to the shores of Holland, where Montagu was waiting in
great anxiety. The weary voyagers landed from a small fishing-smack in a
state of filth and exhaustion, for which their delicate lives had little
prepared them, and which shocked the Prince of Orange, who, together with
his son and daughter-in-law, came down to the seashore to meet the Queen.
Henrietta and her ladies were so feeble that they could hardly stand, while
one of the Capuchin Fathers required the support of two men to help him to
say Mass. The Queen lost in this tempest a precious ship laden with the
stuff of war, but "she gained in the opinion of all the witnesses what she
can never lose,"[277] for indeed her courage, which seemed above that of
her sex, won an admiration which was still further increased when it was
found that she meant, against the advice of her friends, to put to sea
again as soon as the weather permitted and her several ships which had been
dispersed in the storm came up. "They that are delivered from shipwrack,
bid an eternall adieu to the sea, and to the shipps; nay, they are not able
to endure the sight thereof. These are Tertullian's words. Yet within
eleauen days after, O admirable resolution! the Queen, being scarce yet
escaped from a dreadfull storme, spurred on by the desire of seeing the
King and of coming in to his ayde, adventures againe to trust herself to
the furie of the ocean and to the winters rigour."[278] So, recalling this
incident, cried her eloquent panegyrist at her funeral service a quarter of
a century later. Perhaps Henrietta felt that she feared the dangers of the
deep less than the tongues and the acts of the enemies she was leaving
behind. The Hollanders dared to detain a ship which she had caused to be
loaded with ammunition, so that she was obliged to address to them an angry
protest, while the preachers in their pulpits began to rail against the
Prince of Orange and his son's English match, affirming that he wished to
make himself King, and saying that if they must have a tyrant they would
prefer their old master the Spaniard.

Thus Henrietta, bidding a long farewell to Montagu, who set out almost
immediately for France, embarked once more. This time the sea was kinder to
her, but the land proved her enemy. She intended landing at
Newcastle-on-Tyne, but a change in the wind, which until the English coast
was near had been very light, drove the vessel into Burlington Bay in
Yorkshire. The Queen at once sent to inform the Earl of Newcastle, who was
commanding the royalist forces in the neighbourhood. She had not long to
wait before she received his answer in the shape of a body of cavalry,
whose arrival enabled her to land. But, weary as she was, there was no rest
for her. She brought with her a thousand old soldiers from the Low
Countries, for she had heard rumours of a plot to seize her on landing.
They, as well as the escort sent by her husband, were needed, for at four
o'clock on the dark February morning she was roused by the sound of firing.
Four of the Parliament ships had arrived in the bay, and they were shelling
the village, with special attention, it appeared, to the Queen's
lodgings.[279] In a few moments Jermyn appeared and told her to flee for
her life. She jumped up, and having hastily flung on some clothing was
hurrying to a place of refuge when suddenly she stopped, remembering that
lying asleep on her bed was her pet dog, Mitte--an ugly beast, says Madame
de Motteville, who was evidently no lover of the canine race, in recounting
the story. Henrietta could not bear to leave her pet to death, or possibly
to ill-treatment;[280] so, notwithstanding the entreaties of her friends
and the rain of bullets that was falling, she insisted on retracing her
steps to the house she had just left. It was the work of a few minutes to
rush to her room and pick up Mitte. Then with all speed she sought an
uncomfortable safety in a ditch outside the village, where for two hours
the balls played over the heads of the Queen and her suite, until at last
the Admiral of Holland sent to tell the rebels that unless they desisted he
would fire on them in return. "That was done a little late,"[281] was
Henrietta's caustic and characteristic comment.

No less characteristic was her high-spirited return to the village the next
morning, "not choosing that they should have the vanity to say they made me
quit."[282] In spite of all her spirits rose at finding herself again in
England, and she had the satisfaction of knowing that she brought with her
substantial help in the way of arms, ammunition, and money, which her
gallant soldiers had guarded through that night of battle. Her great wish
was to rejoin her husband as soon as possible, and setting herself at the
head of her army she started to march towards Oxford, where Charles was
keeping his Court.

But five months were to elapse before the royal pair were united, and this
five months forms one of the most curious episodes of Henrietta's career.
She became for the time being a military captain, "her she majesty
generalissima," as she calls herself. She played her part right well, as if
she remembered that in her veins flowed not only the blood of her father,
but of her heroic Medici ancestor, Giovanni delle Bande Nere.[283] This
delicately nurtured woman, who was, moreover, in bad health, lived among
her soldiers, says the admiring Madame de Motteville, almost as imagination
may picture Alexander living among his. Forgetting feebleness and fatigue,
she was constantly in the saddle; setting aside all etiquette, she dined in
the open air with her followers, each of whom she treated as a brother. It
was no wonder that the Popish army of the Queen, as it was angrily called
by its enemies, adored its royal mistress. Few probably thought of
Alexander, but some--old soldiers from the Continent, perhaps--may have
remembered the stories of Henry of Navarre among his companions-in-arms.

The military details of the campaign cannot be entered into here. The Queen
was much in the hands of military specialists, a position she did not love,
and which elicited some complaints that she could not rule the army which
bore her name. There were jealousies and differences of opinion, such as on
the question of attacking Leeds, in which matter both she and the Earl of
Newcastle, her general, followed a course which drew upon them a mild
censure from the King. Perhaps the most notable success was the gain of
Scarborough, which was delivered up by its Parliamentary governor, Sir Hugh
Cholmondley, who came to kiss the Queen's hand at York. In that ancient
city she made a considerable stay, which was further enlivened by the
reception of some of the northern loyalist nobility, among whom was the
Marquis of Montrose.

In July Henrietta at last reached her husband. They met in Kineton Vale,
below Edgehill, and at the same time she was able to embrace her two eldest
sons, who were with their father. A few days later she entered Oxford, and
for a moment the welcome of the faithful city diverted her from her woes.
Crowds of spectators lined the streets or peeped out from the
house-windows, and as the procession went by they cheered and blessed the
Queen as the pledge and harbinger of peace.[284] At Carfax "the Major[285]
and his brethren entertained Her Majesty with an English speech, delivered
by Master Carter, the Town Clerk, in the name of the city, and presented
her with a purse of gold."[286] She went on to Christ Church, where she was
received by the Vice-Chancellor and the Heads of Houses, and thence to the
Warden's lodgings[287] at Merton, which had been prepared for her
reception, and where on her arrival she was offered by the University
authorities books of verses and pairs of gloves. This college, which was
probably chosen on account of its proximity to Christ Church, where the
King kept his Court, possessed a secret passage which led into the gardens
of the neighbouring foundation of Corpus Christi, so that Charles could
visit his wife without going into the public street.

There was, indeed, much for the royal pair to discuss, for since their
parting neither had been idle for a moment, and each had to recount to the
other the results of their labours, while the changing circumstances of the
Continent called for careful consideration.

In December, 1642, before Henrietta left Holland, Cardinal Richelieu died
in Paris. The passing away of this great man, who, knowing how to bend men
and circumstances to his will, had built up France as two hundred years
later Bismarck was to build up Germany, was a severe blow to the
Parliamentary party, which knew him to be their friend;[288] but to the
Queen it appeared the removal of the chief obstacle in the way of obtaining
that help from her native country of which she was already beginning to
think. It was believed that now her enemy was gone she would hasten to
Paris herself, but she judged otherwise, and contented herself with
carrying on negotiations by means of Walter Montagu, on whose friendship
with Mazarin she counted. That gentleman supplied the French Government
with a curious paper on English affairs,[289] which he probably drew up at
The Hague under the Queen's direction. It set forth the miserable plight of
Catholicism in that country, and urged the King of France to give help,
which, in the event of his brother of England's success, would be well
repaid, while his failure could bring no prejudice to an ally. These cogent
reasonings were not disregarded, but they did not make as much impression
on the minds of those to whom they were addressed as Henrietta and Montagu
perhaps expected.

All France hoped that the death of the Cardinal would mean a reversal of
his policy, for the nobles were discontented, while the people were
overtaxed and miserable. Already the faint grumblings of discontent could
be heard, which became articulate a few years later in the rebellions of
the Fronde. Such hopes were strengthened by the fact that Louis XIII was
evidently following to the grave the minister who had made him, almost
against his will, a great and victorious monarch. But France was not to
escape so easily the influence of the mighty personality which had
dominated her for so long.

Louis XIII died in May, 1643, and Anne of Austria, after a lifetime of
neglect, found herself at the head of affairs as regent for her little son
Louis XIV. The past career of this lady, her affection for Spain, her not
uncalled for hatred of Richelieu, pointed to a complete reversal of the
Cardinal's policy. His enemies began to come back to Court, and Madame de
Chevreuse herself left her retreat in Flanders, and was seen at the side of
the Queen-Regent.

But Anne soon found out the difficulties of her position. She was an idle
woman who had never been accustomed to use her mind, and she craved
instinctively for a stronger arm and brain on which to lean. She found them
in the low-born Italian adventurer Jules Mazarin, whom Richelieu had
trained to be his successor. Mazarin had not his master's dislike to the
English nation or its Queen. Moreover, he owed much to Walter Montagu,
whose influence with Queen Anne was greater than ever, and who had been
instrumental in introducing the Cardinal to her favour. It is probable that
when Henrietta heard the turn which affairs had taken in France she
rejoiced. She had some cause to do so, but yet in the years that were
coming she was to learn that Mazarin, like Richelieu, only cared, in his
heart, for the interests of France, and that his desire was so to hold the
balance of power between her and her enemies that he might be able to
pursue unmolested the task of humbling the House of Austria, which had been
bequeathed to him by his great predecessor.

In the autumn of 1643 an event occurred which caused much annoyance to
Henrietta, and resulted in the removal from the French Court of the man
most able and willing to advance her interests there.

It is probable that the Queen-Regent was really anxious to succour the King
and Queen of England. She was grateful to them for the kindness which they
had shown to Madame de Chevreuse, and she remembered their common hatred of
Richelieu. Mazarin did not fail in polite condolences, and he thought that
it would be a good thing to send over an ambassador to England, to see at
least that Henrietta was properly treated, and that the interests of France
were duly considered. To this post the Count of Harcourt was appointed,
whose way was to be prepared by an agent of inferior rank, M. de Gressy.

Under cover of this embassy Walter Montagu thought that he would be able to
reach Oxford unobserved. He did not travel with the ambassador, but joined
himself to Gressy's company in England in a disguised dress and a large
wig, which he hoped would be sufficient to conceal the identity of a person
better known in France than in England; but either he overdid his disguise,
or else he went about with injudicious openness in search of amusement, for
at Rochester he was recognized. The sharp eyes of a Parliamentary officer
spied him out, took him in charge and carried him off to London, where he
was put in the Tower and there kept, in spite of the remonstrances of the
French ambassador, the entreaties of the Queen-Regent of France, and the
somewhat lukewarm representations of Mazarin, who perhaps saw in him a
possible rival.[290] All that the two Houses of Parliament would do was to
deliver up to Harcourt the letters of Queen Anne, which were found on the
prisoner. They regarded him as a "grand Jesuiticall English Papist," and
they urged "that he hath been a great incendiary of this unnatural war
against the Parliament, was formerly banished by Act of Parliament, and no
letter from a foreign Prince can defend him."[291]

Henrietta was deeply chagrined, the more so as this vexation came upon the
top of others.

She was not unaware of the feelings with which her husband's enemies
regarded her. The comments and slanders with which she had been pursued in
Holland would have been sufficient to enlighten her, without the reception
which met her at Burlington Bay. The proposal of her enemies, couched in
specious language, to escort her to London, where she should be "lovingly
entertained," roused her to fury, for she who did not fear the bullets or
the waves shrank with a feeling of almost physical repulsion from falling
into the hands of her foes. But a further insult was to come. In May, 1643,
she was impeached of high treason as the greatest papist in the land, and
that her cup of humiliation might be full she was not allowed the title of
Queen of England, on the pretext that, as she had never been crowned, she
had no legal right to it. Truly the mistakes of her youth were returning
upon her head. "You will give a share of all these news to all our friends,
if any dare own themselves such after the House of Commons hath declared me
traitor, and carried up their charge against me to the Lords,"[292] she
wrote sadly to the Duke of Hamilton. It was indeed no advantage to be known
as her friend, specially in London, where the Puritan hatred, of which she
was the chief object, was beginning to attack the priceless memorials of
the past. Stained-glass windows were smashed in the churches, and
"Cheapside Crosse, which at her Majestie's first coming into England was
beautified in a glorious and splendid manner ... as it dazzlled a many eyes
to behold the gods, Popes, and saints thereon,"[293] and which was boasted
of by the Catholics even in Rome as one of the chief relics of the ancient
religion, was torn down, and it was decided that "the Lead about the
Crosse" should "be cast into Bullets, and bestowed on the Papists in
armes."[294] This was bad enough, but even more trying to the Queen's
feelings were the piteous accounts which came of the sufferings of her poor
Capuchins, who, after more than a year of terrified waiting, saw themselves
and their property in the hands of a ruthless mob, which was none the
better because it acted in the name of the House of Commons, and which was
led by Henry Martin, a man of unusually violent character, who was
afterwards one of the regicides. All the remonstrances of the French agent
and the House of Lords, "whose members have learned by their travels that
there are other countries besides England,"[295] were brushed aside.
Hideous orgies and blasphemous revels were witnessed, testifying to the
anti-Catholic hatred of the populace. The beautiful chapel which had been
built with such high hopes only a few years earlier was sacked, and the
ornaments, pictures, and vestments destroyed, except such of the latter as
Martin carried off for his mistress. The picture by the brush of Rubens
which adorned the High Altar was wantonly spoiled; the seat of the Queen
was broken up with peculiar violence. Outside in the garden some of the
rough soldiers played at ball with the heads of a Christ and of a St.
Francis, while others indoors trod underfoot the escutcheons of Henry IV
and his wife, which were kept for use on their anniversaries. Only one
consolation had the unhappy Fathers. Such a scene would not have been
complete without its miracle, and they had the satisfaction of tracing the
hand of Providence in the blindness of their spoilers to a small box of
consecrated hosts hidden away in a cupboard, whose contents were turned
upside down by rough hands of the mob.

Henrietta's wrath may be imagined when she heard of this fresh insult
offered, not only to her but to her parents and to her country under whose
protection the Capuchins lived. It probably outweighed the grief she felt
for the destruction of her beautiful chapel. As for her husband, he was so
incensed that he is said to have specially excluded from pardon all those
concerned in the riot. Again, just as the Queen entered Oxford, another
trouble fell upon her, which was another proof of the remorseless hatred of
the Puritans. Edmund Waller, who in happier days had made verses to her
charms, raised a plot in London in the King's interest. It was discovered,
and among its victims was a faithful servant of Henrietta, Master Tomkins,
who, condemned by "a new counsell of war (consisting of Kimbolton,
Mainwaring, Venn, the Devill, and a few others),"[296] was executed outside
his own door in Holborn by the common hangman.

Nor even within the walls of Oxford was there freedom from jealousy and
strife. Henrietta could not bring herself to look cordially upon
Holland[297] when he came to ask pardon of the King for his rebellion, even
though he used Jermyn as his intermediary, and there were others who,
though faithful to the cause, stood between her and that complete
ascendancy over her husband at which she aimed. Perhaps it was hardly to be
expected that she should like Rupert of the Rhine, the son of the Queen of
Bohemia, who had great influence over his uncle in military matters. Never
at any time during the war did the affairs of the King promise better than
during Henrietta's stay at Oxford. She and her advisers, among whom were
prominent the Earl of Bristol and his son, that same George Digby who had
been with her in Holland, with their usual leaning to the bold and
enterprising course, wished Charles to march on London, and end the war by
a grand _coup_. It was a sore disappointment to her when, on the advice of
Rupert, he turned aside to the siege of Gloucester. She believed (and she
kept the belief to the end of her days[298]) that had he pushed on to the
capital at this favourable moment, he would have been able to overcome his
enemies.

But, in spite of all these accumulated worries, Henrietta's stay in Oxford
was probably the happiest time she had known since the opening of the Long
Parliament. After her long absence she was restored to "the dearest thing
in the world to her, after God, the presence of the King her husband and
the Princes her children."[299] After the troubles and dangers of her
sojourn in Holland and her campaign in the north she was in peace and
safety, though the city was strongly fortified and cannon were to be seen
both at "Newparkes and S. Giles his fields." Nor, in spite of these warlike
preparations, was the mimic Court without its diversions, for each college
and hall was turned into a dwelling for gay royalist ladies and gentlemen,
so that as Henrietta took her airing in Trinity Grove, the Hyde Park of
Oxford, she saw many of the faces she had been accustomed to see in the
real Hyde Park in London.

Absurd reports were rife among the enemy of the condition of the city; how
it swarmed with Irish rebels, how Mass was said in every street; while the
more sober-minded descanted upon the condition of the colleges, which "look
as they did in Queen Elizabeth's daies on the street side, but if you go in
you will find Henry the 8 his reformation in the Chappell."[300] It is
probable that the Queen paid little attention to the flights of the Puritan
fancy, but she took some pains to conciliate her husband's Protestant
friends; and when a sermon which was used to be preached in Merton College
chapel on Sundays was discontinued as a compliment to her, she was much
annoyed, and gave orders that it should be resumed.

But even Oxford could be no permanent resting-place for the Queen. Her foes
were gathering round it, and unless she wished to run the risk of seeing
the horrors of a siege, it was time to be gone. She had, moreover, to care
for another life, for she was about again to become a mother. The King
could not, of course, leave his headquarters, and the husband and wife
prepared to part once more, and this time for ever.

Henrietta left Oxford on April 17th, 1644. The parting between her and her
husband, which took place at Abingdon, was sufficiently sad, even though
the knowledge that it was final was hidden from her. Then, escorted by
Jermyn, whose loyalty had been rewarded by a barony, and whose presence at
her side excited scurrilous comments which she scornfully ignored, she
turned to the south-west. By the 21st of April she was in Bath. She pushed
on by the great city of Bristol, which formed part of her dowry, and thence
to Exeter, where she arrived in a condition so serious that it seemed
likely her troubles would soon find their surest consolation. "Mayerne, for
the love of me, go to my wife,"[301] wrote Charles, and Henrietta herself
penned a short, piteous note to her old physician. "My disease will invite
you more strongly, I hope, than many lines would do."[302] The faithful
Swiss needed no further summons. He was at the Queen's side when, on June
16th, the child, whose short life and tragic death were to be in keeping
with the circumstances of her birth, was born at Bedford House, in the city
of Exeter. The little princess was an unusually pretty baby, and the father
she was never to see wrote expressing great pleasure at the reports of her
beauty, and requesting that she might be christened in the cathedral of her
birthplace, an injunction which aroused the wrath of the Puritans all the
more because Charles had just attempted to silence the unpleasant rumours
current on the subject of his religion by issuing a declaration of his
unalterable attachment to the Protestant faith.[303]

Henrietta, who was always brave in illness, had hoped that the physical
miseries from which she suffered would disappear with her confinement.
Instead, she found herself rather worse than better. "The most miserable
creature in the world, who can write no more"[304]--thus she describes
herself in a letter to her husband written from her bed, and containing an
account of her ailments. To crown all, she found that it was impossible for
her to remain at Exeter. Essex was on her track, and to all the entreaties
for a safe conduct to Bath, which she addressed to him by means of a French
agent named Sabran who happened to be with her, he returned answers which
in the circumstances were brutal. The Queen was no concern of his, he said.
Henrietta, fearing above all things in her weak state the noise of firing
which a siege would involve, dragged herself from her bed a few days after
the birth of her baby, whose helpless life she confided to one of her
attendants, the Countess of Morton. Accompanied by Jermyn and by her
devoted confessor, Father Philip, she fled still farther into the western
peninsula, down to that strange land beyond Truro which was then hardly
considered a part of England, and where still lingered the accents of the
Cornish tongue. There in the castle of Pendennis, which guarded the village
of Penycomequick,[305] she found a refuge. She was indeed in a sad plight.
Mayerne himself believed "that her days would not be many," and a
compassionate Cornish gentleman wrote to his wife that "here is the
woefullest spectacle my eyes yet ever looked on, the most worne and weake
pitifull creature in ye world, the poore Queen shifting for an hour's liffe
longer."[306]

From Pendennis Henrietta found means to put to sea; but not even when she
left English soil did the hatred of her enemies leave her. Ships of the
Parliament were on the watch, and the boat which she was aboard was not
only chased, but pursued by rounds of shot, as the Roundheads wished her to
have "no other courtesy from England, but cannon balls to convey her into
France."[307] Then at last the Queen's brave spirit, which had not faltered
in sorrow, danger, or pain, gave way. She did not fear death, but she
shuddered at the idea of falling into the hands of her foes, and it seemed
as if capture were to be her fate. In her agony she called upon the captain
to fire the powder on board, and to let her die with her friends, rather
than that those impious hands should touch her. When the danger was passed
she reproached herself for having thought of suicide, and happily so
desperate a remedy was not needed. She escaped her enemies once more, and
after a long tossing on the Channel the travellers saw with joy the rocky
coast of Brittany. At the little village of Conquest, near Brest, the
landing was effected, and the daughter of France, returning to her native
land, retired to a whitewashed cottage to rest from her fatigues. But the
news soon spread that the daughter of Henry IV had arrived, and the
nobility of the country-side, who, like all good Frenchmen, honoured the
memory of the great King, flocked to do her service, and to make up by
their generosity the deficiencies of her poverty. Her first care was to
dispatch Jermyn to announce her arrival to the Court of France and to
Mazarin, and to beg the medical assistance which her condition so urgently
required. Meanwhile she was content. The country in which she found herself
was indeed wild and rough as the Cornwall she had left, but at least she
was safe and among friends. In later days she retained no unpleasant memory
of the rocky coast, the desolate moorland, and the brave, simple-hearted
folk of La Basse Bretagne.

[Footnote 262: Walter Montagu. Aff. Etran. Ang., t. 47.]

[Footnote 263: The following is a specimen of it: "You are the abstracted
Quintessence of artificiall Nature: your glorious countenance is crowned
with Majestie, your brow interwoven with occasionall Lenity and discreet
austerity, your eye (like mounted Phoebus in his meridian pride) shoots
such reflective beams of radiant brightnesse that it captivates the dazled
beholder; your Cupidinean cheeks are clothed with intermixed Lillies and
Roses; your purpureous lips (like a Nectarean current) do redound with
expressed Oratory; your Murcurian tongue is gilded with such admirable
Rhetorick that the Muses themselves seem to inhabit there and make it their
Helicon: your Aromatick smelling-breath is so oderiferous that it exceeds
the Arabian Odours, and seems rather celestial than breathed from a mortal
creature, your melodious voice is so harmonious that Apollo may lay down
his Harpe, and the Sphears themselves become astonished."--_The Prince of
Orange, his Royall Entertainment to the Queen of England_ (1641).]

[Footnote 264: Mme de Motteville: _Mémoires_ (1783), I, 270.]

[Footnote 265: Sister of Séguier the Chancellor: she was a great friend of
Mazarin.]

[Footnote 266: Printed in Green: _Letters of Queen Henrietta Maria._]

[Footnote 267: Green: _Letters of Queen Henrietta Maria_, p. 60.]

[Footnote 268: _Ibid._, p. 70.]

[Footnote 269: "I send you this man express, hoping that you will not have
passed the militia bill. If you have, I must think about retiring for the
present, into a convent, for you are no longer capable of protecting any
one, not even yourself."--_Ibid._, p. 69.]

[Footnote 270: _Ibid._, p. 117.]

[Footnote 271: "May Heaven load you with as many benedictions as you have
had afflictions, and may those who are the cause of your misfortunes, and
those of your Kingdom, perish under the load of their damnable
intentions."--Henrietta Maria to Charles. _Ibid._, p. 71.]

[Footnote 272: Green: _Letters of Queen Henrietta Maria_, p. 72.]

[Footnote 273: "The Puritan imagination saw the Queen gathering in
contributions from the religious houses of the Low Countries, many of which
were English. The pamphlet which describes these contributions is marked by
just the slight inaccuracies of a forgery, and if any money came from this
source it was probably a very small sum."--_Queen's Proceedings in Holland_
(1642). See Appendix III.]

[Footnote 274: "... others thought that some witches were made use of to
raise these winds. But all saw that if any such villainy came from Hell it
was curb'd by Heaven in the merciful preservation of the Quene, and that
when God will help the Devill cannot hurt us."--_A true relation of the
Queens Maiesties returne out of Holland, etc. Written by me in the same
storme and ship with her Majesty._ Printed at York and reprinted at Oxford
(1643).]

[Footnote 275: Letter of Lady Denbigh. Hist. MSS. Cam. Ap. to 4th Rep.]

[Footnote 276: Green: _Letters of Queen Henrietta Maria_, p. 161.]

[Footnote 277: Montagu to Mazarin (apparently), February 9th, 1642. Aff.
Etran. Ang., t. 49. See Appendix IV.]

[Footnote 278: _The Funerall Sermon of the Queen of Great Britain_
(Bossuet), translated by Thomas Carre. Paris, 1670.]

[Footnote 279: It is said that Charles did not believe this.]

[Footnote 280: Henrietta was always fond of animals. Evelyn records how in
August, 1662, he went to visit her, and she told him "many observable
stories of the sagacity of some dogs she formerly had."--Evelyn: _Diary_.
Under date August 22nd, 1662.]

[Footnote 281: Green: _Letters of Henrietta Maria_, p. 167.]

[Footnote 282: Green: _Letters of Henrietta Maria_, p. 167.]

[Footnote 283: He was her great-great-grandfather.]

[Footnote 284: See _l'Angleterre Paisible_ (1644).]

[Footnote 285: A man named Dennys. See Anthony Wood's account in his Life.]

[Footnote 286: _Mercurius Aulicus_, July 14th, 1643.]

[Footnote 287: Now part of the general college buildings.]

[Footnote 288: Salvetti says the Parliamentary party regretted him "come
quello che aveva sempre assicurato detto Parlamento per bocca dell'
Ambasciatore di Francia che era qui, che da quella banda haverebbe havuto
ogni assistenza per mantenimento della sua libertà e privilegii: certo è
che l'Ambasciatore fece la parte sua et causò in buona parte la divisione
et cattiva intelligenza che passa fra il re e il Parlamento!"--Add. MS.,
27,962, K., f. 32_b._]

[Footnote 289: This document, which is among the Archives of the Ministère
des Affaires Etrangères Ang., t. 48, is unsigned and without date, but it
is in the handwriting of Montagu, and is among the documents of 1641; it
speaks of "la rebellion presente d'Angleterre," which points to its having
been drawn up after the final rupture in 1642.]

[Footnote 290: Montagu had a good many enemies in France among the
Importants, who disliked him as a friend of Mazarin and as a foreigner who
had great influence with the Queen-Regent.]

[Footnote 291: _Perfect Diurnall_, October, 1643.]

[Footnote 292: Green: _Letters of Queen Henrietta Maria_, p. 215.]

[Footnote 293: Kingdom's _Weekly Intelligencer_, May, 1643.]

[Footnote 294: _Ibid._]

[Footnote 295: Sieur de Marsys: _Histoire de la Persecution Presente des
Catholiques en Angleterre_ (1646), from which the above account is chiefly
taken. The Capuchins were sent back to France by Parliament, April, 1643.]

[Footnote 296: _Mercurius Aulicus_, July, 1643.]

[Footnote 297: "De l'entretient que j'ay eu avec le Reyne d'Angleterre j'ay
bien compris qu'elle mésprise autant qu'elle peut hayr le Comte de
Hollande."--Brienne to Sabran, December 21st, 1644. Add. MS., 5460.]

[Footnote 298: The opinion of Bossuet was probably derived from the Queen
through Mme de Motteville: "... si la reine en eût été crue, si au lieu de
diviser les armées royales et de les amener contre son avis aux siéges
infortunés de Hull et de Gloucester, on eût marché à Londres, l'affaire
était décidée, et cette campagne eût fini la guerre."--_Oraison funèbra de
la reine d'Angleterre._]

[Footnote 299: Du Perron: _Proces verbal de l'assemblie du Clergé_, 1645.]

[Footnote 300: _The Spie_ (1643).]

[Footnote 301: Green: _Letters of Queen Henrietta Maria_, p. 243.]

[Footnote 302: _Ibid._]

[Footnote 303: "Declaratio servenissimi potentissimique principis Caroli
magnae Britanniae, etc., regis Ultramarinis Protestantium Ecclesiis
transmissa."--Dupuy MS., 642.]

[Footnote 304: _Letters of Queen Henrietta Maria_, p. 243.]

[Footnote 305: Now Falmouth.]

[Footnote 306: Francis Basset to his wife. Polwhele: _Traditions and
Recollections_, Vol. I, p. 17.]

[Footnote 307: _Mercurius Pragmaticus_, October, 1644.]



CHAPTER IX

THE QUEEN AND THE WAR

II

  The darksome statesman, hung with weights and woe
  Like a thick midnight fog mov'd there so slow
      He did not stay, nor go;
  Condemning thoughts--like sad eclipses--scowl
          Upon his soul,
  And clouds of crying witnesses without
      Pursued him with one shout.
  Yet digg'd the mole, and lest his ways be found
      Work'd underground
  Where he did clutch his prey.

                                HENRY VAUGHAN


If, at the time of her departure from England, Queen Henrietta Maria had
been able to make choice of a book for her private reading and meditation,
and if in that choice she had been guided by the most enlightened
self-interest, she would perhaps have chosen a little pamphlet published in
London in 1642. It was entitled _A collection of Records of the great
Misfortunes that hath hapned unto Kings that hath joyned themselves in a
near allyance with forrein Princes with the happy successe of those that
have only held correspondency at home_.

Henrietta landed in France in the spring of 1644, and from that time until
her husband's death her life was a continuation of that which she had led
in Holland, namely, a perpetual struggle to gather together men and
money--particularly the latter--to help on the cause of the King of
England. For this she intrigued now with one foreign Prince, now with
another, with the King of Denmark, with the Prince of Orange, with the Duke
of Lorraine, the admirer of Madame de Chevreuse, the old enemy of
Richelieu, with the Pope himself. The result was the undying hatred of a
large section of the English people towards both her and her husband, and a
growing distrust which had much to do with the King's final overthrow.

It is idle to blame her overmuch. It cannot be denied that hers were the
mind and the will which impelled her husband along this fatal road; but he
fell in gladly with her suggestions, and he was almost as eager as she for
help from any quarter. She believed, moreover, that the Scotch rebels had
set the example by intriguing with Richelieu, and she knew that the English
Puritans had made it possible for an army of Scots, who at that time were
looked upon almost as foreigners, to enter into England and to remain upon
its soil. It would have required the brain of an Elizabeth to perceive that
a king, by following such precedents, was courting disaster. Henrietta's
brain, acute, lively, but never profound, was incapable of perceiving this.
Besides, she was a Bourbon, and her simple political creed was identical
with that of her husband: a King should be no tyrant, he should rule his
people with justice and mercy; but it was his to command and theirs to
obey, without asking questions as to matters with which they had no
concern.

The exiled Queen spent some weeks at

              "ces admirables Fontaines
  Où par douzaines et centaines
  Pluzieurs gens vont pour être sain
  Et qu'on nomme Bourbon-les-Bains."[308]

Their healing influence, together with the care of some of the most
distinguished physicians of France,[309] restored her to such a small
measure of health as enabled her to turn her steps towards Paris. The
kindness she had received since her arrival in her native land was a
preparation for the magnificent reception which awaited her at the capital.
Her brother, the Duke of Orleans, came out as far as Bourg la Reine to meet
her, and was quickly followed by his daughter, Mademoiselle de Montpensier,
the richly dowered girl of whom Henrietta was already beginning to think as
a possible bride for her eldest son. At Montrouge, on the southern
outskirts of the city, the Queen of England received an even more
distinguished attention, for there the Queen of France, accompanied by her
two little sons, met her. Anne's kind heart was touched when she saw the
sister-in-law from whom she had parted nearly twenty years earlier as a
bride returning sad, sick almost to death, and bereft by ill-health and
sorrow of the brilliant beauty which had then been hers. Forgetting the
girlish unkindness which Henrietta had shown her in the past, remembering
nothing but their common friends and enemies--Richelieu, Madame de
Chevreuse, Jars, Montagu--the Queen of France took the Queen of England
into her arms, and the two women clung together weeping and embracing. Then
they climbed up into the royal coach, and Henrietta made the acquaintance
of the little King, whose unexpected appearance in the world six years
earlier had caused so much excitement, and of the still younger Duke of
Anjou, "the real Monsieur" (as he was called in contradistinction to his
uncle), who was one day to be her son-in-law. In such company there can
have been no tedium in the long drive through the Rue S. Jacques, over the
Pont Neuf, and through the Rue S. Honoré to the Louvre, where the kindness
of Queen Anne had caused apartments to be prepared for the royal guest.
That afternoon deputations from the city of Paris and from the various
sovereign bodies waited upon Henrietta, and the ceremonies of reception
were concluded a few days later by a State visit to Notre-Dame, where the
Queen of England gave thanks to Heaven for her safe return to France
through the ministry of the young Coadjutor Bishop of Paris, the witty and
dissolute churchman who afterwards became famous as Cardinal de Retz, and
who always retained a kindness for the exiled royal family of England.

Nothing could exceed the kindness and sympathy which were shown to the
Queen, kindness all the more welcome because she was aware of the annoyance
it would cause to her enemies. "I am so well treated everywhere that if my
lords of London saw it, I think it would make them uneasy,"[310] she had
written to her husband shortly after her landing in France. She was
assigned a pension of 10,000 crowns a month, which enabled her to keep up a
fitting establishment, and in addition to her lodgings at the Louvre she
was given the Château of S. Germain-en-Laye, where she had played as a
child, and where, half a century later, her son was to wear out a more
desolate exile. Her own affairs prospered. Her health improved surely if
slowly. She had the comfort of the presence of faithful servants--Jermyn,
who acted as her secretary, Henry Percy and Lady Denbigh, who herself had
tasted the full bitterness of civil strife in the death of her husband, who
fell fighting for the King, and in the defection of her eldest son to the
rebels, which sorrows bound her all the more closely to the Queen, who had
shown the tenderest sympathy with her bereavement. Moreover, in Paris
Henrietta found many friends. Familiar faces, indeed, were missed. The
Bishop of Mende had not been given time to learn wisdom by experience, but
had "made an angelical end" at the siege of Rochelle, dying in the same
year as his enemy Buckingham. Madame S. Georges, who had found an
honourable position as governess to the heiress of Montpensier, had passed
away in 1643, and Louis XIII was gone, so that all his sister could do for
him was to journey to S. Denys and to sprinkle his tomb with holy water.
But old servants, such as the Bishop of Angoulême, were there to welcome
her; and in the brilliant Paris of the day she came across not only friends
of the past--M. de Chateauneuf, the Chevalier de Jars, and others--but new
acquaintances, who soon became friends, of whom perhaps the most
interesting was the accomplished Madame de Motteville, herself one of the
band of exiles whom the death of Richelieu had brought back in triumph to
the Court of France.

Nor did she fail to attract the exiles of England to her own Court, where
she gathered round her some of the men of wit and learning whom the evil
times had forced to quit their native land. Thither came "Master Richard
Crashaw, Master of Arts of Peterhouse, Cambridge, well known for his
excellent poems,"[311] who was introduced to the Queen's notice by a
brother poet, Abraham Cowley, at this time Jermyn's secretary. It can
hardly be supposed that Henrietta understood the highly difficult poems of
the Cambridge mystic, but perhaps she talked with him of S. Teresa,[312]
whose praise inspired some of his choicest work, and whom she herself had
learned to love as a child among the Carmelites in Paris. Moreover, Crashaw
was interesting as a recent convert to Catholicism. "Being a meer scholar
and very shiftless,"[313] he was quite destitute in the French capital when
he was found by Cowley, and he was delighted to accept Henrietta's
hospitality. He dwelt nearly a year at her Court, making many friends by
his talents and virtues, of whom the chief was Lady Denbigh. Her he
exhorted, not without success, to follow his religious example, and to her
he dedicated his book of poems, _Carmen Deo Nostro_, which was published
after he had passed on to the Court of Rome, bearing a letter of
introduction written to Innocent X by the Queen's own hand.[314] To the
exiled Court of England came also another poet, Sir William D'Avenant,
whose welcome was the warmer because he had been concerned in the army
plot. At the Louvre he wrote the dreary verses of _Gondibert_, and
dedicated them to Thomas Hobbes, that daring philosopher who had likewise
found a refuge in Paris, where, apart from the turmoils of England, he was
able to reflect upon those principles of government wherewith he startled
the world a few years later on the publication of _The Leviathan_. To these
literary refugees must be added English Catholic nobles, such as Lord
Montagu, and ladies of the same persuasion, among whom was prominent the
Dowager Countess of Banbury, a lady who, after a not irreproachable career
in England, had settled down in Paris to enjoy the reputation of a rich
_dévote_.

But no social pleasures and attentions could satisfy Henrietta, whose heart
was with her struggling husband. "There is nothing so certain as that I do
take all pains I can imaginable to procure you assistance, and am as
incapable of taking any delight or being pleased with my being here, though
I have all kinds of contentments, but as I hope it may enable me to send
you help."[315] These words, written to the King on November 18th, 1644,
were no idle sentiment; they are the truest epitome of her life in Paris.

The royal cause was balancing between hope and fear. The defeat of Marston
Moor, on July 2nd, 1644, had been indeed a terrible blow, but new hope was
infused into the party by the surrender of Essex in Cornwall, a victory
peculiarly grateful to the Queen, who could not forget the Earl's ungallant
conduct to her. The great need was men and money, and to procure these was
the end of Henrietta's unremitting efforts. For this she carried on
negotiations with the Prince of Orange, by means of an English Catholic
named Stephen Goffe, for the marriage of Prince Charles with his daughter;
for this she attempted to mortgage the tin mines of Cornwall; for this,
above all, she carried on personally and through Jermyn long and weary
negotiations with the Court of France.

France had not been unmindful of the difficulties of the King of England,
or of the troubles which threatened the Queen; but great caution was used,
and Gressy, who had shown too openly his partiality for the royal cause,
was replaced by Sabran, who knew better how to trim between the two
parties. It is probable that at the beginning of the struggle Mazarin
desired the victory of the King, and it is said that up to 1644 the French
Government gave as much as 300,000 crowns in money and munitions to aid
him.[316] A letter of Goring,[317] Henrietta's agent in France, dated at
the beginning of that year, which unfortunately fell into the hands of her
enemies, spoke of the dispatch of a considerable quantity of arms, and gave
a cheerful account of the kind words of the Queen-Regent and of Mazarin.
Charles himself thought that a little French money and a little French
influence would settle everything. His enemies were manifestly cast down,
not only by the death of Richelieu, but by the accounts which reached
London of the kind reception which had been given to the Queen. But,
nevertheless, Henrietta was to find disappointment here as elsewhere.
France was in no condition to give such help as would have sufficed for her
needs. The country was overtaxed, and though the new reign was brightened
by the éclat of the victory of Recroy, at which the young Duke of Enghien,
afterwards the great Condé, won his reputation, yet the war with Spain was
a terrible burden. Moreover, in spite of the assertions of the Queen-Regent
and her advisers that it was the means and not the will that was lacking,
there is little doubt that the French Government was beginning to see in
the English troubles a state of affairs highly satisfactory to itself.
Besides, Mazarin certainly inherited from Richelieu a distrust of Charles
and Henrietta. The Queen was specially distrusted. The English Catholics
had not quite forgotten her French birth, but it was believed in France
that they had inclined her to Spain, an opinion which was strengthened by
the fact that up to the time of her leaving England two of her principal
advisers were the Digbys, father and son,[318] who were well known to be
pro-Spanish in their sympathies. Mazarin was quite aware of Henrietta's
influence over her husband, and he hoped that her removal from his side
would help to turn Charles' eyes from Spain.

And there were other and more personal reasons for Mazarin's distrust of
the Queen of England. Henrietta, who was always too prone to believe that
good diplomacy consisted in cultivating relations with all parties at once,
allowed her ambassador Goring to meddle in the intrigues which grew up
round Mazarin as they had round Richelieu, a fact of which the Cardinal,
who had inherited a perfect system of espionage, was quite aware. By the
time Henrietta reached France the power of the Importants was broken, and
Madame de Chevreuse had again left the Court. The exiled Queen desired
greatly to see her old friend, and without pausing to consider how
imprudent was the appearance of any connection between herself and that
factious lady, she asked her sister-in-law's permission to have an
interview with the Duchess, permission which with all courtesy was refused,
at the instance of Mazarin. The Cardinal, moreover, caused the Queen of
England to be warned against others of her old friends, among whom may be
mentioned M. de Chateauneuf, who had indeed escaped public disgrace, but
who was known to be as inimical to Mazarin as ever he had been to
Richelieu.[319]

Thus it came about that, in spite of the kind words and occasional
assistance of the Queen-Regent and of Cardinal Mazarin,[320] Henrietta was
less successful than she had hoped to be, and could by no means persuade
Mazarin to an open breach with the Parliamentary party, whose strength he
was beginning to appreciate. "I have not found the means of engaging France
as forwardly in your interest as I expected," she wrote sadly to Charles.
In 1645 she was informed that all the French Government could do for her
was to permit her to make levies in the country (and she was so poor that
it was thought she would not take advantage of the permission), and to make
an appeal to the clergy of France on behalf of the necessities of the King
of England.

Of this last grace Henrietta availed herself eagerly; but of all the many
injudicious acts which she committed at this period of her life, this
appeal to the clergy of a race and of a faith alien to those of her
subjects was one of the most injudicious. The outburst of anti-Catholic
rage which she had witnessed in England ought to have taught her prudence;
but hers was not a mind to learn by experience. Moreover, she seems from
the outbreak of the war to have looked upon the Puritans as irreconcilables
who could only be subdued by force, and whom it was useless to attempt to
propitiate. She thought also, and most erroneously, that they were but a
small minority of the nation.

The Queen had recovered her spirits. Not only had Mazarin, in spite of his
official refusals, sent her secretly a sum of money sufficient to raise her
ever-ready hopes, but she expected great things from a growing friendship
with Emery, the Deputy Treasurer and one of the richest men in France. To
complete her satisfaction the clergy showed great sympathy with her, and
sent her, on their first assembling, a sum of money as an earnest of more
to come[321]; which money was immediately laid out in raising levies for
England.

The assembly of the French clergy, which was presided over by the
Cardinal-Archbishop of Lyons, the brother of the great Richelieu, met in
May, 1645, but it was not until the February of the following year that the
case of the Queen of England was seriously considered. Henrietta's advocate
on this occasion was probably the best that could have been chosen. The
Bishop of Angoulême during his sojourn in England had resisted in a really
praiseworthy manner those foreign influences which had corrupted some of
his fellow-countrymen who resided there, and he was perhaps regarded in
Paris with greater favour than any other of the Queen's servants. He was,
moreover, a speaker and preacher of repute, and the oration which he
delivered before the Fathers of the Church was not only a fine piece of
oratory, but was skilfully constructed to work as much as possible upon the
feelings of his audience.[322]

He dwelt upon the miserable condition of the Catholic Church in England,
which, before these troubles, had begun, after a century of persecution, to
raise its head under the protection of the Queen. He asserted (what was
true) that were the King forced to make terms with his foes, the Catholics
would be the scapegoat. He drew lurid word-pictures of the terrible
consequences to the Church throughout Europe should the impious rebels
succeed in their object of setting up a Puritan republic in England. Then
he turned to the even more powerful argument of self-interest. The
Huguenots, he said, who were beaten down but not destroyed, were looking
across the Channel to the Puritans of England, whose real design was the
destruction of the Catholic Church as well in France as in their own land.
To help forward this project of the Evil One large sums of money were being
dispatched by the French Protestants to aid the armies of rebellion in
England.[323]

  "Res tua tunc agitur, paries cum proximus ardet,"

cried the good Bishop, hoping, not without reason, to arouse the fears of
his audience; for it was only twenty years since the fall of Rochelle, and
the revival of the power of the Huguenots, which it had required the strong
hand of Richelieu to repress, was an ever-present terror to the French
Catholics. But Du Perron was not content with such arguments. He was able
to make a statement which he hoped would tell much in favour of the cause
he was advocating. He declared that the King of England had promised in
writing to his wife that if he were restored by Catholic help he would
repeal every law against the Catholics on the statute book,[324] and the
Bishop added that he was at liberty to make this statement, as its purport
was already known to the Puritans through the interception of the King's
letter. That Charles made this promise there is no reason to doubt; that
had cause arisen he would have broken it, as he broke others, is in the
highest degree probable.[325] Perhaps the French bishops knew the man with
whom they had to deal, perhaps they were instructed by Mazarin, whom they
were too well trained not to consult. Be this as it may, the results of the
eloquence of the Bishop of Angoulême were disappointing, even though he
enforced his arguments by descriptions of the piteous condition of
Henrietta and of her children, "the grandsons, the nephews, and the cousins
of three of our Kings." The clergy of France did not feel able to offer to
the Queen of England more than a few thousand crowns, "a somme fitter to
buy hangings for a chamber than prosecute a war,"[326] as a newswriter of
the day said.

But disappointed as the Queen was, she quickly turned to other hopes and
schemes.

Ever since the Irish rebellion of 1641 Puritan scandal had linked
Henrietta's name with that of the rebels. The accusation as it stood was
ridiculous, but the Confederate Catholics,[327] as the Irish in arms called
themselves, certainly hoped something from the Catholic Queen, and in 1642
they presented to her a petition, in which they begged her "Hester-like
intercession to our most gracious Prince." They heard with sympathy of her
arrival in Paris, and again dispatched a letter to congratulate her on that
event.

She, on her side, regarded the Confederate Catholics as rebels in arms
against their lawful King; but she had a certain sympathy with them as the
victims of Puritan intolerance, and she thought, like her husband, that it
might be possible to turn their arms against worse enemies. With this end
in view she carried on negotiations with a certain Colonel FitzWilliams,
whom she found in Paris, and for the same purpose she cultivated the
acquaintance of the agent of the Confederate Catholics in that city, Father
O'Hartegan, the Jesuit.

This patriot, who was of a type not uncommon in his native land, was
greatly pleased at the notice of the Queen of England, whom he believed to
be on the point of starting for Ireland. He also thought, on account of
some slight attention shown to him by Mazarin,[328] that France, which up
till now had shown herself very cool to the necessities of the persecuted
Irish Catholics, and had even, by the mouth of the Cardinal, lectured them
on their lack of loyalty to their sovereign, was about to do her duty by
them. "What is needed," remarked the Jesuit modestly, "is 200,000 crowns
out of hand, with a good store of arms and ammunition, and promise of
yearly favour."

O'Hartegan had reason for his good spirits. His glib tongue recommended him
where he was not too well known, and he was caressed by the English
Catholics in Paris and by Jermyn, who was the more entirely satisfactory to
deal with, inasmuch as he had no religious scruples of any kind. Moreover,
the affairs of the Confederate Catholics were going very well in Rome.

When Henrietta had been but a short time in France, the news of two deaths
arrived, that of Elizabeth, Queen of Spain, and that of Maffeo Barberini,
Pope Urban VIII.

The Queen of England had long ceased to be in close touch with her
sister,[329] but it was thought that she would be greatly distressed at the
death of the Pope, for the Barberini had always been considered her
friends. But it may be that she was not altogether displeased. Any change
in the personnel of the European Courts meant a fresh chance for her
schemes; and though Urban had been kind enough to send her 25,000 crowns,
which she, or perhaps her husband, acknowledged from Oxford in 1643,[330]
yet he had shown himself somewhat callous to her larger claims, and it was
perhaps not unknown to her that Cardinal Francesco, in spite of his
often-repeated professions of friendship, had been the first foreign prince
to contribute to the necessities of the rebellious Confederate Catholics.
The new Pope, Innocent X, was believed to favour Spain as his predecessor
had favoured France, but Henrietta had not lived for nearly twenty years
among the English Catholics without having learned to consider this an
advantage rather than otherwise in religious negotiations. She determined
to send an envoy to Rome, ostensibly to congratulate the Pope upon his
accession, and O'Hartegan learned that her choice had fallen upon her old
friend Sir Kenelm Digby.

There are few more picturesque figures in the history of the time than that
of this gentleman: a scholar who was welcome among the learned of all
nations, a chemist who was half scientist, half charlatan, a naval
commander who had brought home stories even more remarkable than the
majority of travellers' tales, it is not surprising that he should have
attracted the attention of the Queen, who liked brilliant people. She may
perhaps also have been touched by the strange story of his love, which had
bound him in affectionate marriage to a woman who had been the acknowledged
mistress of another man. But she ought to have known better than to send
him to Rome. Not only was he a vain and undependable person--a teller of
strange tales, as even the courteous Evelyn described him--but the
religious vacillations and experiments which had made him unwelcome a few
years earlier to Urban VIII were not likely to commend him to Innocent X,
who would be less attracted by his learning and accomplishments than his
scholarly predecessor. The English Catholics in Paris who opposed the
appointment were wiser than could be understood by Henrietta; she added to
her mistake by permitting the envoy who was going to Rome on an
international mission, and who above all should have shown himself strictly
impartial between the rival factions of English Catholicism, to take upon
him before leaving Paris the charge of advancing at the Papal Court the
interests of the Chapter, which, after the banishment of the Bishop of
Chalcedon, claimed ecclesiastical authority in England, whose pretensions
were resolutely opposed by the regular and some even of the secular
clergy.[331]

And Sir Kenelm had hardly reached Rome when the need for help became more
pressing than ever, for the 14th of June of that same year was the day of
Naseby.

It was a crushing defeat, and after it the royal party never really
rallied. Henrietta, in her unconquerable hopefulness, thought that now, at
her extremity, France would come effectually to her aid; but Mazarin feared
to offend the Puritans more than he feared their dominance, and the old
weary round of intrigue was pursued with the same lack of result. Even an
offer from which the Queen hoped much, made to her by the Duke of Bouillon,
of raising troops for England round Cologne, came to nothing, because the
Cardinal believed that the real intention of Bouillon was to use these men
in the interests of Spain.

[Illustration: SIR KENELM DIGBY

FROM AN ENGRAVING AFTER THE PAINTING BY VAN DYCK]

And Naseby was more than a military defeat. On that fatal field, through
some misfortune or negligence, fell into the enemy's hand the papers of the
King.[332] Nothing more unfortunate could have occurred. The secrecy of
these letters, which were shortly published in London with choice comments,
was worth more to Charles and Henrietta than men or money. Their
publication betrayed the schemes in which the Queen had been spending her
strength for winning back England by foreign troops or by foreign gold. It
revealed how greatly the King was under the influence of his wife, and how
deeply she was compromised with the hated Irish. Most disastrous of all, it
showed how at the very time that he was promising to support the Protestant
religion and never to permit Catholicism, he was secretly giving her
authority to pledge his word for the complete toleration of the hated
religion. He stood revealed as what he was, a shifty and untrustworthy man.
After Naseby Charles was never trusted again.

Henrietta probably did not appreciate the magnitude of the disaster, and
she turned again cheerfully to the tortuous intrigues from which she hoped
so much.

At first it seemed as if Sir Kenelm Digby's mission would be successful.
The smaller Italian princes to whom he appealed he found indeed "a frugal
generation," but the Pope received him with great kindness, and appeared
charmed by his flow of persuasive eloquence and by the piety and
fascination of his manners. He even gave him an order for 20,000 crowns, to
be used in arms and munitions of war, which the Queen of England gratefully
acknowledged from S. Germain in September, 1645.[333] So far so good, but
neither she nor her agent knew the odds against which they were fighting.
Henrietta always believed that her husband's leniency to the Catholics
during his years of power had given him a claim upon the gratitude of the
whole Catholic world. She also knew better than any one else what the
hatred of the Puritans to her co-religionists really was, and what their
domination might mean. But at Rome matters were looked at in another light.
A certain interest was taken in Charles, and considerable sympathy was felt
for his unhappy wife; but neither were trusted. Henrietta was believed to
be guided by heretics, and even, through their influence, to have been in
the past "a powerful instrument for the destruction of the Catholics and of
the Catholic religion";[334] while Charles was disliked as a heretic, and
his failures to keep his word--his persecution of the Catholics in 1626,
his desertion of Strafford and the like--were reckoned up against him with
pitiless accuracy. As he had been in the past so no doubt would he be in
the future. It cannot be said that it was a misreading of Charles'
character which led the Pope and his advisers to think that he would have
taken the money of the Church and then thrown over the Catholics, if by
doing so he could further his own interests. And there were other and
better claimants in the case. Hopes at Rome were rising high with regard to
Ireland. Urban VIII, in 1628, had thought it would be a nice arrangement
for all concerned if that island were handed over to the Holy See. Innocent
X's designs were not quite so far-reaching, and he recommended loyalty to
the King of England; but he thought that it might be possible to coerce a
faithless and heretic Prince by means of the Confederate Catholics.
Moreover, that body, which had agents all over Europe, was fortunate enough
to have in Rome a representative as able and effective as Sir Kenelm Digby
was the reverse, in the person of Father Luke Wadding, of the Order of St.
Francis. This friar left Ireland when he was a boy of fifteen, and he never
saw again his native land; but throughout a long life which he spent
roaming about the Continent he preserved a fervid Hibernian patriotism, of
which the effects are felt to the present day.[335] At this time he was
living in Rome, and any slight feeling of loyalty to the King of England
which he may have once possessed had long ago been lost in the desire to
see his faith and his race triumph over the hated oppressor. It was he who
had prevailed upon Cardinal Francesco Barberini to send money to Ireland,
and though he had not been able to rouse the cautious Urban VIII to any
considerable effort,[336] he prepared with undiminished hope to use all his
influence to win over Innocent X, from whose Spanish sympathies he augured
the happiest results.

And indeed it was largely owing to the representations of this Irish friar
that, in the summer of 1645, while Sir Kenelm Digby was still fêted in
Rome, an envoy on his way from the Pope to the Confederate Catholics
appeared in Paris bearing a large sum of money, which the indefatigable
Wadding had amassed for the use of the faithful in his native land.

Giovanni Battista Rinuccini, Archbishop of Fermo, was a worthy ecclesiastic
of middle age. It is said that he was appointed to this delicate mission to
pleasure the Grand Duke of Tuscany, whose subject he was. He had, however,
a certain interest in the British Isles, because as a young man he had been
associated with a Scotch Capuchin, by name George Leslie, of whom he wrote
an edifying biography, which may be considered an early example of
religious romance.[337] Clarendon stigmatizes him as a "light-headed
envoy," but the epithet is hardly happy as applied to this stern, unbending
Churchman, whose unalterable determination it was that the money of the
Church should not be squandered to further the interests of a heretic
sovereign. In this respect, indeed, he followed with fidelity the
instructions given to him which dwelt upon the necessity of the strongest
guarantees of real benefit to the Catholics before money was advanced to
the King of England, and which altogether would have been instructive, if
not pleasant, reading for Charles and Henrietta.

The Queen was indeed already beginning to repent of her overtures to the
Confederate Catholics,[338] for in the early part of the year some letters
of O'Hartegan had fallen into the hands of the Roundheads, who caused them
to be printed. These letters spoke disrespectfully of her, and showed how
cheaply the Jesuit held the advantage of the King, so that Charles, who was
wont to feel great indignation at every one's self-seeking and shiftiness
except his own, wrote to his wife that the agent was "an arrant
knave."[339] Rinuccini's arrival in Paris made matters worse. Henrietta was
a Catholic, but she was a queen also, and it was an insult to which she
could not tamely submit that the Pope should send an envoy to those who,
after all, were rebels in arms against her husband. She wrote a dignified
letter of remonstrance to Innocent, and she refused to receive Rinuccini
except as a private person, a condition which the ambassador, one of whose
strongest characteristics was his personal vanity, declined to accept.

The poor Queen was indeed in a mesh from which there was no escape, and she
knew not how to carry out the task of so settling the affairs of Ireland
that the King might be able to draw troops therefrom. She desired to make
peace between Ormonde, her husband's Viceroy, and the Catholics, and her
difficulties were such as attend all persons who, being in authority, are
obliged to seek at one and the same time the help of representatives of
opposing interests. Rinuccini, seeing her under the influence of
Protestants, concluded, not unjustly on his own premises, that the duty of
the Holy Father was to turn a deaf ear to her entreaties for aid, and to
send such moneys as he could afford to the Confederate Catholics, whose
loyalty to the Holy See was not compromised by any inconvenient devotion to
a heretic Prince. Out in Rome Sir Kenelm was begging and praying for help,
unconscious of the fact that the envoy was warning the Pope against him,
and asserting, probably with some truth, that the rosy pictures which he
drew of the intentions of the King of England with regard to the Catholics
were greatly over-coloured. The Confederate Catholics in Ireland were
waiting eagerly for the coming of Rinuccini, and had little desire to help
the King of England, except in so far as such help would conduce to the
realization of their chief object, the emancipation of Ireland from the
hated foreigner.

Rinuccini, after a considerable delay in Paris, whence he wrote many
letters to Rome expressing his views with great frankness upon the Queen of
England and her advisers, pushed on to Ireland, where, far from making
peace with Ormonde or with any one else, he set everybody by the ears--not
a difficult task, it is true, in that island--and ended by excommunicating
most of the Confederate Catholics themselves. Steps were taken by some of
the victims to find out the opinion of the Sorbonne as to the validity of
this sweeping ecclesiastical censure.

Meanwhile, in Paris, Henrietta was dragging on her old life of intrigue and
disappointment. The presence at her side of Jermyn, whose great influence
over her was generally remarked,[340] was not in her favour, either with
the extreme Catholics, who disliked him as a heretic, or with the French,
who considered him, with justice, to be a man of mediocre ability, and who
were pleased to see that the Queen, in spite of her subservience, could
sometimes assert her will against his. The French Government was becoming
more and more afraid to provoke the Puritans, whom Mazarin feared to throw
into the arms of Spain. The defeat of Naseby, whose importance the Queen
and her friends vainly endeavoured to minimize, was followed by the hardly
less disastrous day of Philiphaugh, when Montrose was overwhelmed by an
army of the Covenant. Thus the year 1646 broke in gloom and despondency,
which were not lightened when a scheme of the Queen's for the invasion of
England by French troops was discovered by the interception of her
letters.[341] In the spring affairs had so far advanced that Charles, with
a confidence rendered pathetic by the event, gave himself up into the hands
of the Scots, the true compatriots of a Stuart King.

For a moment there seemed to be hope, and it is possible that Charles might
have recovered his crown had he been able to accept unreservedly the
Covenant. His refusal to give up the Church of England, which was one of
the most respectable acts of his life, brought upon him remonstrances,
entreaties, and almost anger from his wife, to whom all Protestants were
heretics alike. She even sent D'Avenant to him to represent her wishes on
the subject; but Charles, with a violence he did not often show, drove the
hapless poet from his presence with an intimation that he was never to
enter it again. Mazarin at this time seems to have desired the King's
restoration by means of an accommodation, though, owing to the ever-present
fear of Spain, he would not openly assist him. He could not repress his
scorn for the man who could throw away his crown for such a bagatelle as
the Church of England. In fact, he frankly owned that he could not
understand Charles. The latter had granted concessions which compromised
his kingly dignity; why make a fuss about a trifle which, nevertheless, if
conceded, might restore him to power? The Cardinal urged the French
ambassador in England to do all he could to bring the King to reason; but
the latter, who was becoming very sceptical as to the friendship of the
French,[342] was not likely to listen. The chance was lost, and Charles
soon found himself a prisoner in the hands of the English Presbyterians.
His countrymen, to whom in the days of his power he had shown favour not
always in accordance with his own interests, had sold him to his enemies.

Once again, a year later, there was a lifting of the clouds. In 1647 it
became evident that the Puritan party was growing weary of the Presbyterian
tyranny. As is commonly the case in revolutions, wilder and stronger
spirits were crowding out the more moderate reformers who had begun the
battle. The Independents, to whom in large measure the victories of Marston
Moor and Naseby were due, had control of the army, and the great figure of
Cromwell, which soon was to bestride England like a Colossus, was coming to
the front. In the late spring it seemed as if Charles and the Presbyterians
might come to terms. On June 4th a deputation from the army waited on the
King at Holmby House, where he was imprisoned, took possession of his
person, and carried him off to Newmarket.

The Independents showed great respect for their royal prisoner, and it
seemed as if they would be willing to make an accommodation with him.
Henrietta, in Paris, whither all news was quickly carried, thought with her
usual hopefulness that at last, at the darkest hour, the day was dawning.
There happened to be at her Court two gentlemen who seemed well fitted to
act as intermediaries between Charles and the Independents; one of them,
Sir John Denham, the bearer of a name which is still remembered in English
literature, had improved a sojourn in prison by making friends with that
worthy army chaplain Hugh Peters, who was closely connected with the
Independent leaders; the other, Sir Edward Ford, was Ireton's
brother-in-law. These two slipped across the Channel, and they were
permitted to see the King; but whether the Queen did not feel much
confidence in her envoys (and, indeed, Denham was a rash and headstrong man
who died insane), or whether her restlessness would not permit her to cease
from fresh attempts to improve her husband's position, she determined to
send another emissary of higher standing to intermeddle in this delicate
negotiation.

Just at this time Sir John Berkeley, who had distinguished himself during
the war as Governor of Exeter, was returning from Holland, whither he had
been to express the Queen's condolences on the death of the Prince of
Orange. He was almost unknown to Henrietta personally, but she was aware of
his reputation for loyalty and good sense, and she knew also perhaps that
he was regarded with respect by the enemy; he had hardly arrived at S.
Germain-en-Laye, where she was keeping her Court, when he accidentally fell
in with one of her servants, Lord Culpepper.

"You must prepare for another journey, Sir John," said the latter; "the
Queen designs to send you into England."

Berkeley, as is not surprising, was rather taken aback. England was the
last place to which he desired to go; he knew none of the Independent
leaders, and, as he justly remarked, it was a pity to send over too many of
the King's servants to share in the places and preferments which those
worthies hoped to keep for themselves; but Culpepper waived these
objections aside. "If you are afraid, Sir John," he said contemptuously,
"the Queen can easily find some one else to do her business."

No man of spirit could bear such an imputation. Berkeley, against his
better judgment, set off to add another to the long list of the Queen's
diplomatic failures.[343]

Another failure more personal and even more bitter was awaiting her.

In the first days of 1646 Sir Kenelm Digby appeared in Paris; he was
immediately received by the Queen, and "he got three hours' conference with
her and in end she seemed to be verie well pleased."[344] It appears that
he brought with him for the Queen's consideration and the King's
confirmation a document which he had drawn up in Rome and which had been
provisionally accepted by the Pope, though a copy had been sent to
Rinuccini for such emendations as he might think fit. By these articles
Innocent agreed, in return for the abolition of the Penal Laws in England
and the public establishment of Catholicism in Ireland, to make a grant,
100,000 crowns; but in his distrust of Charles he provided that the money
should not be paid to the Queen until the King had carried out the
provisions with regard to Ireland. It was further agreed that Irish troops
under Catholic leaders should be taken into the King's service in
England.[345]

It is hardly likely that either Charles or Henrietta relished these
articles, which showed plainly enough how deeply they were distrusted at
Rome, and which required so much before they could touch a penny of the
coveted money. Perhaps the King was indignant with Sir Kenelm for
suggesting such terms, for it was probably against his wishes that the
knight, after the failure of his negotiations, was again dispatched to Rome
in the autumn. He carried with him, however, the undiminished confidence of
the Queen,[346] and by October he was fixed at the Papal Court waiting for
the help which never came.

And, indeed, his chances of success were even slighter than before; he was,
it is true, the most accomplished cavalier of his time--"the Magazine of
all arts," as he was called. Distinguished foreigners who visited the
Eternal City came to see him, and went away quite fascinated by his stores
of learning and by his agreeable conversation; had he been dropped from the
clouds on to any part of the world he would have made himself respected,
said his admirers. Yes, retorted the Jesuits, who did not love him, but
then he must not remain above six weeks; the trouble was that he had been
in Rome a good deal more than six weeks. The Pope was tired of his endless
talk and was beginning to think that he was mad, which perhaps was not far
from the truth; his folly in mixing up matters of high policy concerning
the King and Queen of England with an affair of purely ecclesiastical
interest, such as the recognition of the Chapter, was commented on, and the
extraordinary bitterness which both he and his friends displayed towards
their opponents, among whom were the powerful religious Orders, was not in
his favour; his position was further injured by his intimacy with Thomas
White, a learned but eccentric priest then in Rome, who, afterward the
elaborator of a theory of government which, like that of Hobbes, was
believed to be a bid for the favour of Cromwell,[347] was already regarded
with suspicion by the orthodox as unsound both in theology and philosophy;
finally, the envoy suffered by the absence of Francesco Barberini, who had
withdrawn from Rome. The Cardinal had not, it is true, been a very faithful
friend[348] to the Queen of England, but in spite of occasional lapses he
felt a certain interest in English affairs which might have counteracted in
some measure the Irish influence brought to bear upon the Pope. Nor was it
only Sir Kenelm who was out of favour; his cousin George Digby, through
whose hands passed the negotiations of the King and Queen with the Irish,
was industriously misrepresented by Rinuccini, while there were those who
did not scruple to insinuate that the Queen required money for her private
purposes, and that Jermyn, the heretic Jermyn, would have the spending of
it. So greatly was the Pope influenced by these scandals that even those
who favoured Henrietta and who would gladly have seen the Holy See unite
with France to restore the King of England thought that Digby's best policy
would be to plead for a grant of money for Ireland; but this course was
prevented by the extraordinary conduct of Rinuccini, which has been already
referred to, and which caused great wrath in the school of Catholics to
which Digby belonged. It would be well, wrote White bitterly to Sir Kenelm,
if the Pope could send into Ireland "such orders, or rather such a man,
that may conserve the peace and seek more after the substance than after
the outside of religion."[349]

Thus affairs stood in Rome at the crisis of 1647.

As early as 1645 it was believed that the Queen was inclined towards the
Independents through the influence of Henry Percy and of Father Philip, who
were suspected of communication with the leaders of that party;[350] in
matters of religion they were less rigid than the Presbyterians; they
possessed some glimmering of the idea of toleration, and they even showed
some disposition to favour the Catholics. When in 1647 they gained the
upper hand, Henrietta believed that the moment had come at last when the
Catholics would be able to hold the balance between the King, the
Presbyterians, and the Independents, and with the favour of the latter to
win the long-hoped-for liberty of conscience, carrying with it the repeal
of the penal laws. Never, it was thought, had the Catholics had such a
chance since the days of Mary. Charles, characteristically, wished to keep
out of sight in the negotiations. "You must know," wrote an English
Catholic to Sir Kenelm Digby in August, 1647, "at last not only the
Independents, but the King himself do give us solid hopes of a liberty of
conscience for Catholics in England in case we can but gain security that
our subjection to the Pope shall bring no prejudice to our allegiance
towards his Majesty or that state; it is true the King will not appear in
it, but would have the army make it their request unto him; and so I
understand he hath advised the Catholics to treat with the army about it,
and the business will be to frame an oath of allegiance."[351]

The Catholics carried on negotiations with Sir Thomas Fairfax;[352] the
rationale of the penal laws had always been the suspicion that the
recusants held opinions subversive of the State and indeed of all social
life, and it was to overcome this difficulty that Three Propositions were
drawn up by the Catholics "importing that the Pope and Church had no power
to absolve from obedience to civil government or dispense with word or oath
made to heretics or authorize to injure other men upon pretence of them
being excommunicated."[353] It was intimated that if the Catholics, by
subscribing these opinions, could "vindicate these principles from
inconsistency with civil government,"[354] the penal laws would be repealed
and liberty of conscience granted.[355]

It is no wonder that the English Catholics were in high spirits. The more
moderate of them who were weary of being considered bad subjects for
principles which they did not hold were glad to testify their loyalty not
only to the Independents, but to the King, who had always been suspicious
of it; a large number of Catholics came forward to sign the negative of the
Three Propositions,[356] among whom were members of the religious Orders,
even of the Society of Jesus, and well-known laymen, such as the Marquis of
Winchester, whose defence of Basing House had won the admiration of the
whole Royalist party, and Walter Montagu, who, though he was still in
prison, was allowed to intermix in the negotiation.

Out in Paris the Queen, who had spent her life trying to persuade her
husband of the unimpeachable loyalty of her co-religionists, was doing her
part. In July, even before the Three Propositions were drawn up, she put
further pressure upon Rome for aid; there were men, there were munitions,
all that was needed was money; surely in such a crisis to gain all that was
at stake the Holy Father would supply it. She sent her instructions to
Digby and waited in hope.

Sir Kenelm pressed with all his eloquence the needs of the Catholics and
their great opportunity. Perhaps the Pope was a little overwhelmed by his
flow of words, for he requested him to put his arguments on paper; Digby,
nothing loath, drew up memorials, of which the burden was always the need
of money to enable the Catholics to take an influential part in the
settlement which was believed to be pending. He descanted upon the hopes
raised by the unexpected revolt of the Independents, who wished to destroy
the Presbyterians and to favour the Catholics. The latter were exhausted by
years of war and persecution, but if the Holy Father would only show a
timely liberality they could so intervene as to bring about not only their
own salvation, but that of their co-religionists in Ireland, thus saving
the Pope the great expenses he was incurring on behalf of the Confederate
Catholics. Moreover, by such conduct he would give proof that by sending
Rinuccini to Ireland he had had no desire but the good of religion; if he
refused the Queen's request, added Digby impressively, it would mean the
ruin of religion, both in England and Ireland.

Innocent may have given some attention to Digby's arguments, but probably
at no time did he think of acting upon them. The reputation of the envoy,
which was not improved by his disrespectful, if just, criticisms of the
methods of the Papal Court, told heavily against his requests. Moreover,
the Queen herself was little trusted, particularly in Irish affairs, for
she was believed to put the interests of her husband above those of
religion, and to favour unduly Lord Ormonde, to whom (in the vain hope of
bringing about an accommodation between him and the Confederates) she had
recently sent an agent, by name George Leybourn,[357] who, though a
Catholic priest, belonged to a very different school of thought from that
of the fierce Rinuccini. Besides, the recent events in England were
prejudicial to Henrietta's interests in Rome.

The negotiation of the Three Propositions was considered a private matter,
but it came to the ears of the Pope. Innocent probably was aware that it
was to a great extent managed by a section of the secular clergy, who,
perhaps from their close connection with the intellectual society of Paris,
held Gallican views of so extreme a type that they would gladly have
settled the matter without reference to Rome, and who saw in the whole
affair a nice opportunity of getting rid of their enemies the Jesuits, whom
they thoughtfully suggested should be excluded from the general toleration;
indeed, one of the chief supporters of the scheme was a priest named
Holden, who was a great friend of Sir Kenelm Digby and Thomas White, and
who had long been noted for the extravagance of his opinions.[358] This
gentleman, now resident in Paris, wrote encouraging letters to his
co-religionists in England, assuring them that their attitude on the
questions raised by the Three Propositions was that of all the learned and
judicious men of France. It is true that some of the more timid English
Catholics, notwithstanding such encouragement, became alarmed, and wrote an
exculpatory letter to the Holy Father, in which they informed him that the
denial they had given to the Three Propositions was "in, the negative to
theyr affirmative who presented them unto us, not absolutely in theyr
negative, for that had indeed intruded further upon the Pope's authority
than the subscribers were willing to doe."[359] But even such refinements
could not save the conduct of the English Catholics from condemnation at
Rome, where the deposing power was not so lightly to be parted with. Thus
it is not surprising that Henrietta waited for a reply from the Pope with
the heart-sickness of hope deferred. She did not know, what had long been
confessed among the initiated, that the Holy Father's chief object was the
success of the Confederate Catholics,[360] to whom in the spring of that
same year he had sent, together with his paternal benediction, the sum of
50,000 crowns. In September she took up her ever-ready pen and wrote
herself to Innocent, a sad letter, in which she speaks of her devotion to
the Catholic faith, and of the good intentions which had not been seconded
as they should have been. It is not known whether the Pope replied to these
reproaches, but a month later he received Sir Kenelm Digby once again,
though he was probably aware of the fact that that gentleman was
hand-in-glove with those whom he had censured in England.

That gentleman's temper had not been improved by his long trials; the last
memorial[361] which he drew up, which was to a great length, is extremely
acrid in tone. It dwells with justice upon the services which the Queen had
rendered to the Catholic Church, upon the fair hopes which had been
blighted by the war. It speaks of the ill reception accorded to her
friends--among whom are mentioned Richard Crashaw and Patrick Cary, the
brother of Lord Falkland--at the Papal Court. Finally, it dwells with
particular and not unmerited bitterness upon the conduct of Rinuccini, who,
it was believed, had a secret commission to separate Ireland from England.
It happened that just about the time of the presentation of this memorial
the hopes of toleration for the Catholics in England disappeared as
suddenly as they had arisen, for the two Houses of Parliament voted that
religious liberty should not extend to the toleration of Papists;[362] but
even had this untoward incident not occurred, Digby can hardly have
expected much from the Pope. The answer came at last in March, 1648, and it
was cold and decisive. The Holy Father would have liked to help the Queen
of England, but seeing no hope of the success of the Catholics, he felt
that he could not indulge his inclination.[363] Sir Kenelm shook the dust
of Rome off his feet and left it more convinced than ever of what he had
written a year previously, that no one could succeed at the Papal Court
without money and influence, and that "piety, honour, generosity, devotion,
zeal for the Catholic faith and for the service of God, with all other
vertues, heroic and theological,"[364] were banished thence. Henrietta
would perhaps hardly have endorsed this comprehensive indictment; but she
was bitterly disappointed, and she was incapable of perceiving that from
his own point of view Innocent was right in refusing money, of which such
Catholics as Sir Kenelm Digby[365] and his friends would have had the
spending. On larger principles also the papal policy was justified. The
idea of founding a solid toleration for Catholics upon the basis of a union
of the King and the Independents was chimerical, for those among the
Puritans who favoured the scheme were but a small minority of advanced
views, and even they, it seems, soon repented of their liberality. Even had
Charles been trustworthy (and in this, as in other cases, he paid the
penalty of his incurable shiftiness), the anti-Catholic feeling of the
nation, which had been one of the chief causes of the war, would never have
permitted the antedating by more than a century of the repeal of the penal
laws, and had the guarantees been given they would assuredly have been
broken. With regard to Ireland, the Queen is perhaps less to be blamed. She
knew that the Confederate Catholics hoped much from her, and she could not
know that Rinuccini, the envoy of the Holy Father, was using all his
influence against her, or fathom the depth of the malice which led him to
write that "from the Queen of England we must hope nothing except
propositions hurtful to religion, since she is entirely in the hands of
Jermyn, Digby, and other heretics."[366]

       *       *       *       *       *

"He perished for lack of knowing the truth," said Henrietta once of her
husband, with a flash of insight not often given to her. That which was
true of Charles was true of her also; she was her father's daughter, and
she desired to know the truth, and she was accustomed to say that the chief
need of princes was faithful counsellors who would declare it to them; but
to such knowledge she could not reach. Her schemes, with all their
ingenuity, failed one after another because she was unable to grasp the
conditions in which she worked, or to read the motives and characters of
the people with whom she had to deal. She lived in a world of unreality
built up of the love which she bore to her husband, which made her as
unable to understand that the restoration of Charles Stuart to the throne
he had lost was not the main object of the diplomacy of Europe, as she was
to appreciate the fact that such negotiations as those which she, the Queen
of a Protestant country, carried on with the Pope and the Catholics of
Europe were more fatal to him than the swords or the malice of his enemies.

[Footnote 308: Loret: _La Muse Historique_ (1859), t. II, p. 393.]

[Footnote 309: One of them was René Chartier, an elderly man, who had
attended several members of the royal family; he was the translator of
Galen and Hippocrates. G. Patin: _Lettres._]

[Footnote 310: Green: _Letters of Queen Henrietta Maria_, p. 253.]

[Footnote 311: Birchley: _Christian Moderator_ (1652), p. 20.]

[Footnote 312: In 1642 the Queen accepted the dedication of _The Flaming
Heart, or the Life of the Glorious S. Teresa_, published at Antwerp; it is
a translation of the saint's autobiography.]

[Footnote 313: A. à Wood: _Fasti Oxonienses_ (1691), II, p. 688.]

[Footnote 314: See Appendix VII.]

[Footnote 315: Green: _Letters of Queen Henrietta Maria_, p. 264.]

[Footnote 316: Sabran Negotiations, Add. MS., 5460.]

[Footnote 317: This letter is found _in extenso_. MS. Dupuy, 642.]

[Footnote 318: The Earl of Bristol and George, Lord Digby.]

[Footnote 319: The relations between Henrietta and Goring, on the one hand,
and the discontented French on the other, are mentioned in the _Carnets de
Mazarin_, published in V. Cousin: _Mme de Chevreuse._]

[Footnote 320: Mazarin, in a letter of 1651, speaks of "plus de trois mille
livres prestées à la reyne d'Angleterre des occasions où elle étoit reduite
en grandes necessitez."--Chéruel: _Lettres de Mazarin_, IV, p. 221.]

[Footnote 321: 1,500,000 francs is the sum named in the letter from Paris
read in the English Parliament in January, 1646 (Tanner MS., LX); this
present is not mentioned in the official account of the assembly of clergy,
and it is possible that the writer of the above letter listened to a
baseless rumour and that no such gift was made at the time.]

[Footnote 322: The official report of this speech is in the "Proces Verbal
de l'assemblée du clergé, 1645"; the only copy which the present writer has
seen is in the _Bibliothèque Magasin_ in Paris. The Roundheads printed a
translation of the speech (with comments) in pamphlet form, entitled: "A
warning to the Parliament of England. A discovery of the ends and designs
of the Popish party both abroad and at home in the raising and fomenting
our late war and still continuing troubles. In an oration made to the
general assembly of the French clergy in Paris by Mons. Jacques du Perron,
Bishop of Angoulesme and Grand Almoner to the Queen of England. Translated
out of an MS. copy obtained from a good hand in France. 1647."]

[Footnote 323: This was denied by the Roundheads. See "A warning to the
Parliament of England," etc.; but it was apparently generally believed in
France. See Sabran Neg., Add. MS., 5460.]

[Footnote 324: Document VI in the Appendix seems to refer to the
negotiations between the King and the Catholics at this time.]

[Footnote 325: The King's letter to the Queen was one of those taken at
Naseby and published in _The King's Cabinet Opened_. The passage runs thus:
"I have thought of one means more to furnish thee with for my assistance
than hitherto thou hast had. It is that I give thee power to promise in my
name to whom thou thinkest most fit that I will take away all the penal
laws against the Roman Catholics in England as soon as God shall enable me
to do it, so as by their means, or in their favours, I may have so powerful
assistance as may deserve so great a favour and enable me to do it." Du
Perron's reference to this letter proves that it was not a forgery of the
Puritans.

In a letter from Paris "presented by Mr. Speaker," January 29th, 164-5/6,
is the following passage: "For these causes and further help (iff need
shall be) the queene has obliged herselff solemnlie that the King shall
establishe frie liberty of conscience in all his three kingdomes, and shall
abolishe utterlie all penal statutes made by Queene Elizabeth and King
James of glorious memorie against Poperie and papists."--Tanner MS., LX.]

[Footnote 326: _Moderate Intelligencer_, July, 1646. "The clergy conveaned
in favour of her Majesty of England's designs finding that there was little
hopes to bring about at present either the recovery or increase of the
Catholic religion and so to no end to advance monies unless to exasperate
and bring ruin upon those of the Roman religion there, have agreed to give
and directed to be presented unto her some few thousands of crowns, a somme
fitter to buy hangings for a chamber than prosecute a war: are risen and
have dismissed this assembly."]

[Footnote 327: The Confederate Catholics were a body formed after the Irish
rebellion of 1641; there were at this time (1645) three parties in Ireland,
the Confederate Catholics, the Protestants--whose army was commanded by
Ormonde, the King's Viceroy--and the Puritans: the two former, though
nominally enemies, had a common ground in their hatred of the latter.]

[Footnote 328: O'Hartegan records with great glee that while he was
received in audience by Mazarin and even invited to dine in his palace,
Jermyn, "His Holiness, His Nuntius," and other ambassadors, were unable to
obtain an audience even after many days' solicitation. Mazarin's real
object was to prevent the Confederate Catholics from "casting themselves
wholly into the armes of the King of Spain." Tanner MS., LX.]

[Footnote 329: As early as 1635 she said that she had not corresponded with
Elizabeth for ten years, as the latter said she could not write freely.
Aff. Etran. Ang., t. 45.]

[Footnote 330: See Appendix V.]

[Footnote 331: It is said that Bishop Smith, who was still alive, was
opposed to Sir Kenelm Digby's undertaking this mission, but was overborne.]

[Footnote 332: The same misfortune occurred a few months later when George
Digby was defeated at Sherborne (October, 1645) and his correspondence,
much of which concerned the intrigues of the King and Queen, fell into the
hands of the enemy, and was afterwards read in Parliament; and again at
Sligo (October, 1645), when the Glamorgan Treaty was found in the coach of
the Archbishop of Tuam.]

[Footnote 333: In this letter the Queen thanks the Pope for "des armes et
munitions de guerre qu'elle a fourni, de la promesse qu'elle m'a donné
d'une nouvelle assistance d'argent et de la restitution des pensions à ceux
de la nation écossaise tant à Rome qu'à Avignon."--P.R.O. Roman
Transcripts.]

[Footnote 334: Rinuccini: _Embassy in Ireland_, p. lviii.]

[Footnote 335: He was the founder of S. Isidore's College in Rome.]

[Footnote 336: Nevertheless in 1642 Urban sent an agent by name Scarampi to
Ireland at the request of Cardinal Francesco Barberini.]

[Footnote 337: _Il Cappuccino Scozzese_ (1644). Before the end of the
seventeenth century it was translated into French, Spanish, and Portuguese,
during the eighteenth century into English.]

[Footnote 338: Her husband warned her in January, 1645, not to give "much
countenance to the Irish agents in Paris."--_King's Cabinet Opened_. She
replied, "That troubles me much, for I fear that you have no intention of
making a peace with them [the Irish] which is ruinous for you and for
me."--Green: _Letters of Queen Henrietta Maria_, p. 290. February 28th,
164-4/5.]

[Footnote 339: _King's Cabinet Opened._]

[Footnote 340: "... D. Baro Germanus qui in maxima apud Reginam Angliae
gratia nec minore quam Cardinalis Mazarinus apud Reginam
Galliae."--Grotius: _Epistolae ineditae_ (1806), p. 71.]

[Footnote 341: There is little doubt that Henrietta would have been willing
to cede to France the Channel Islands, the last remains of the great
heritage of the Conqueror, in return for help.]

[Footnote 342: See _Letters of Charles I to Henrietta Maria in 1646_, ed.
Bruce. Camden Society.]

[Footnote 343: This is Berkeley's own account taken from his memoirs.
Clarendon's is very different, and says that Berkeley was a vain man who
was delighted to undertake the mission.]

[Footnote 344: Tanner MS., LX.]

[Footnote 345: These articles are published among the documents at the end
of Rinuccini's _Embassy in Ireland_, p. 573; among the Roman Transcripts
P.R.O. are very similar articles endorsed "in the handwriting of Sir Kenelm
Digby." They are among the papers of 1647, and very possibly belong to the
later date.]

[Footnote 346: In May, 1647, the Queen wrote to the Pope asking him not to
receive communications from unauthorized persons who approached him in her
name, but only from Digby. P.R.O. Roman Transcripts.]

[Footnote 347: "The grounds of obedience and government by Thomas White,
gentleman (1635), dedicated 'to my most honoured and best friend Sir Kenelm
Digby.'" White knew Hobbes, but his political theory is rather an
anticipation of that of Locke and the eighteenth-century Whigs.]

[Footnote 348: Later it was even believed that he was favourable to the
Roundheads. An English gentleman who was in Rome in 1650 complained of his
discourtesy, "who was the English (I say rebels') Protector."--John
Bargrave: _Pope Alexander VII and the College of Cardinals_.]

[Footnote 349: _Blacklo's Cabal Discovered_, p. 6. This curious book, which
was published in 1679, consists of a collection of letters which throws
much light upon Sir Kenelm Digby's mission and the events of 1647.]

[Footnote 350: The writer of an unsigned letter in the Bibliothèque
Nationale in Paris says that he was charged "de representer à la serieuse
consideration de la Reyne et de Mgr. le Cardinal le trois que prennent les
Independants qui va à la ruine totale du Roy et des siens et directement à
charger le gouvernement et combien cela regarde la France; que les chefs de
cette faction sont le Comte de Northumberland My lord Saye et les deux
Vaines qui font agir auprès de notre Roy et au dela auprès de notre Reyne
par My lord Percy et autres qui ont toutes leurs confidence au Père
Philipes; ceux la ont contre eux tous les Escossais et les meuilleurs
Anglois si bien que si notre Reyne ne veut recevoir et assister ces bons
Anglois et les Escossais il se trouvera quelle fera bien de ne penser plus
a repasser en Angleterre."--MS. Français, 15,994.]

[Footnote 351: _Blacklo's Cabal Discovered_, p. 21; the suggested oath is
printed, p. 49.]

[Footnote 352: These negotiations were of the nature of a private
understanding based on the twelfth article of the Heads of the Proposals
offered by the army, which provided for "the repeal of all Acts or clauses
in any Act enjoining the use of the Book of Common Prayer, and imposing any
penalties for neglect thereof; as also of all Acts or clauses of any Act
imposing any penalty for not coming to Church or for meetings elsewhere for
prayer or other religious duties, exercises or ordinances and some other
provision to be made for discovery of Papists and Popish recusants and for
disabling of them and of all Jesuits or Priests found disturbing the
State."--Gardiner: _Constitutional Documents of the Puritan Revolution_, p.
321.]

[Footnote 353: "The controversial Letter on the great controversie
concerning the pretended temporal authority of Popes over the whole earth.
1673."]

[Footnote 354: _Ibid._]

[Footnote 355: The Three Propositions were printed several times in the
latter half of the seventeenth century, among other places (together with
the suggested oath of allegiance) in _Blacklo's Cabal Discovered_. There
are several MS. copies among the archives of the See of Westminster, at the
end of one of which it is said that it was signed by fifty Catholic nobles,
but was condemned by the Congregation at Rome. See Appendix VIII.]

[Footnote 356: The Three Propositions are statements of the opinions
objected to, and which the Catholics were required to subscribe in the
negative.]

[Footnote 357: He travelled under the pseudonym of Winter Grant. He was an
old friend of the Queen, having been her chaplain before the war; he had
been a friend of Father Philip. His own memoirs give the best account of
his unsuccessful mission.]

[Footnote 358: Con, years earlier, in one of his letters from England,
writes of Holden's extravagant opinions.]

[Footnote 359: Archives of the See of Westminster. It seems that the
censure was of a private nature; it is printed in Jouvency: "Receuil de
pièces touchant l'histoire de la Compagnie de Jésus" (1713), where it is
ascribed to the influence of the Jesuits.]

[Footnote 360: Those less sanguine than Henrietta had long known this; "the
Pope cannot doe much, all he can is promised for Ireland," occurs in a
letter of the beginning of 1646 from Robert Wright to "Mr. Jones of the
Commons." Tanner MS., LX.]

[Footnote 361: Among the Roman Transcripts in the P.R.O. are five memorials
drawn up by Sir Kenelm Digby, dated respectively July 14th, July 26th,
August 3rd, August 12th, and October 20th, 1647. Of the latter there is a
duplicate dated 1648 among the Chigi Transcripts (P.R.O.), and there is an
old English translation among the archives of the See of Westminster.]

[Footnote 362: Whitelocke: _Memorials of English Affairs_, p. 274.]

[Footnote 363: P.R.O. Roman Transcripts.]

[Footnote 364: Digby to Barberini, April 28th, 1647. P.R.O. Roman
Transcripts.]

[Footnote 365: Sir Kenelm Digby somewhat later entered into negotiations
with Cromwell in the hope of obtaining toleration for the Catholics.
Henrietta Maria (if a story, which on the authority of Cosin found its way
into a letter written from Paris, may be believed) grew suspicious at last
of the man she had trusted so long; one of his friends was telling her of
his arrival in Paris, "but she suddenly interrupted him as he was
commending the knight and said openly in the hall, 'Mr. K. Digby, c'est un
grand cochin [knave].'" Tanner MS., 149. George Davenport to W. Sancroft,
Paris, January 15th, 165-6/7. Sir Kenelm died in 1665.]

[Footnote 366: Rinuccini: _Embassy in Ireland_, p. 367. Digby is George
Digby, afterwards the second Earl of Bristol; he became a Catholic in later
days, but Rinuccini seems to have disliked him rather more after his
conversion than before.]



CHAPTER X

THE QUEEN OF THE EXILES

  Rememberance sat as portress of this gate.

                                     WILLIAM BROWNE


It was the beginning of the year 1649. France, which four years earlier had
seemed so secure a refuge, was itself torn by civil war. The day of
Barricades had come and gone; Paris was in the hands of the Frondeurs,
deserted by Queen Anne and by the little King who had retired for safety to
S. Germain-en-Laye: Mazarin seemed to the full as unpopular as even
Strafford had been.

Within the city, in the palace of the Louvre, the Queen of England yet
lingered; she would gladly have escaped to her relatives at S. Germain, but
when she attempted to do so she was stopped at the end of the Tuileries
Gardens. However, she had little fear; she knew that she was popular with
the people, who preferred her sprightly ways to those of the _dévote_
Spanish Queen, who thought of nothing but convents and monks, and she was
content to wait upon events. It is true she was exceedingly uncomfortable;
little by little the seemly establishment she had kept up in the early days
of the exile had dwindled as she strained every nerve to send supplies to
her husband, but she had never known need until now, when for six months
her allowance from the King of France had not been paid. However, one day,
when in the bitter cold of January she could not even afford a fire, she
received a visit from the Coadjutor Bishop, who was a man of great
importance among the Frondeurs. Little Princess Henrietta, who had been
smuggled over to France in 1646 and who was now about four years old, was
lying in bed. "You see," said the Queen, indicating the little girl and
speaking with her usual cheerfulness, "the poor child cannot get up, as I
have no means of keeping her warm." De Retz, in spite of his leanings to
liberalism, was so shocked that a daughter of England and still more a
granddaughter of Henry the Great should be in such a plight, that he
prevailed upon the Parliament to send a considerable sum of money to the
Queen of England.

It was never the physical accidents of life that weighed upon
Henrietta--these she could bear so lightly as to shame her attendants into
a like courage; but there was worse than cold or privation, worse even than
the fear lest her native land might be rushing to the same fate as had
overwhelmed the land of her adoption.[367] The real misery was the anxiety
which was gnawing at her heart for her children, and above all for her
husband. During the day she was able in some degree to divert her mind from
it, but in the silent watches of the night it overwhelmed her.

She had begged and entreated the French Government to intervene between
Charles and the foes in whose hands he was; but after her long experience
of Mazarin she was not surprised at the ineffectual character of such
intervention as the French ambassador gave. In Paris people were too much
taken up with their own troubles "to take much notice" or to "care much of
what may happen to the King of England."[368] Lower and lower sank the
Queen's hopes, until at last all that she desired was to be at her
husband's side to uphold him in his trouble. Laying aside in her great love
the pride which prompted her to ask nothing from her enemies, she wrote to
both Houses of Parliament asking for a safe conduct to England. Even this
sorry comfort was denied her: her letters, the purport of which was known,
were left unopened, to be found in that condition more than thirty years
later among the State Papers.

In Paris the days dragged on. The city was so blockaded it was almost
impossible for letters to enter it. There was great uncertainty as to the
fate of the King of England, but sinister rumours, which probably came by
way of Holland, began to be rife. One day Lord Jermyn presented himself
before Henrietta and told her that her husband had been condemned to death
and taken out to execution, but that the people had risen and saved him.
Thus did the faithful servant attempt to prepare the Queen; and even over
this shadow of the merciless truth she wept in recounting it to her
friends.

But at last concealment was impossible. Father Cyprien was at this time in
attendance on the Queen, and one evening as he was leaving her dining-room
at the supper hour he was stopped at the door and asked to remain, as she
would have need of his consolation and support. His wondering looks were
answered by a brief statement of the fate of the King of England, at which
the old man shuddered all over as the messenger passed on. Henrietta was
talking cheerfully with such friends as the state of Paris permitted to
gather round her, but she was awaiting anxiously the return of a gentleman
whom she had sent to S. Germain-en-Laye. Jermyn (for it was he who had
taken upon himself the task of breaking the hard news) said a few words
intended to prepare her; she, with her usual quickness of perception, soon
saw that something was wrong, and preferring certainty to suspense begged
him to tell her plainly what had happened. With many circumlocutions he
replied, until at last the fatal news was told.

"Curae leves loquuntur, graves stupent," is the comment of Father Cyprien,
the spectator of this scene. Henrietta was utterly crushed by so awful a
blow, which deprived her, by no ordinary visitation, but in so unheard-of
and terrible manner, of him who had been at once "a husband, a friend, and
a king"; she sank down in what was not so much a faint as a paralysis of
all power and of all sensation except that of grief; she neither moved nor
spoke nor wept, and so long did this unnatural state continue that her
attendants became alarmed, and, in their fear, sent for the Duchess of
Vendôme,[369] a sweet and charitable lady whose whole life was devoted to
doing good and of whom the Queen was particularly fond; she, by her tears
and her gentle sympathy, was able to bring Henrietta to a more normal
condition in which tears relieved her overcharged heart. All the next day
she remained invisible, weeping over the horror which to her at least was
unexpected, for she had never believed until the last that the English
people would permit such an outrage, and recalling, with bursts of
uncontrollable grief, the happy days she had spent with the husband who had
been her lover to the end. "I wonder I did not die of grief," she said
afterwards, and indeed, at first, death seemed the only thing left to be
desired, but

  "Jamas muere un triste
  Quando convienne que muera."[370]

On the following day, however, she was sufficiently recovered to receive
Madame de Motteville, who was setting out for S. Germain-en-Laye. The Queen
asked her friend to come and kneel beside the bed on which she was lying,
and then taking her hand she begged of her to carry a message to the
Queen-Regent. "Tell my sister," said Henrietta, "to beware of irritating
her people, unless" (with a flash of the Bourbon spirit) "she has the means
of crushing them utterly." Then she turned her face to the wall and gave
way once more to her uncontrollable sorrow. Only one thing could have
increased her grief, and that was the knowledge, mercifully hidden from
her, of the part which she had played in bringing her husband to his
terrible doom.

It was but a few days later that she roused herself to go for a short visit
to her friends, the Carmelite nuns in the Faubourg S. Jacques;[371] but
there fresh agitation awaited her, for thither was brought the last tender
letter which her husband had written for her consolation when he knew that
he must die. As she read it grief once more overcame her and she sank
fainting into the arms of two of the nuns who stood near; but she was
stronger now than when she had met the first shock. Flinging herself on her
knees before the crucifix which hung on the wall and raising her eyes and
hands to heaven, she cried, "Lord, I will not complain, for it is Thou who
hast permitted it." A similar courage upheld her in receiving indifferent
acquaintance and uncongenial relatives who came to pay visits of
condolence. Mademoiselle de Montpensier, indeed, considered that her aunt
was less affected by her husband's death than she should have been, though
she had the grace to add that it was probably self-respect and pride which
forbade the widow to show the depth of her sorrow; this was undoubtedly the
case. Henrietta might open her heart to dear friends such as Madame de
Motteville or the Duchess of Vendôme, but she could not expose the
sacredness of grief to the curious eyes of her niece, who not only had
shown herself very indifferent to the charms of the Prince of Wales, on
which, perhaps, Henrietta had descanted rather too frequently, but was
inclined to regard the Queen of England's tales of the happiness and
prosperity of her married life as somewhat highly coloured.

The execution of Charles I caused an unparalleled sensation throughout
Europe, and indeed the world. Kings shivered on their thrones and despotic
governments trembled. Sovereigns had indeed been murdered with a frequency
which made such tragedies almost commonplace, but it was without precedent
that a king should be put to death after a judicial trial by the hands of
his own subjects. Even in far-away India a king who heard the news from the
crew of an English ship replied that "if any man mentioned such a thing he
should be put to death, or if he could not be found out, they should all dy
for it."[372] In France the horror was specially felt, both on account of
the close ties which bound together the two royal houses and because, owing
to the unforgotten murder of Henry IV, regicide was a crime particularly
odious to all good Frenchmen, who abhorred the views held on this subject
by an advanced school of Catholicism. Moreover, the state of the country
was such as to cause apprehension of a civil war similar to that which had
caused the tragedy. "It is a blow which should make all kings tremble,"
said Queen Anne. Even the rebellious Frondeurs were shocked at the news.
Many a gallant Frenchman would gladly have unsheathed the sword to avenge
the murder of Charles Stuart, and many did take up the pen to exhort
Christian princes to lay aside their differences and to turn their arms
against the English murderers, which, of course, those potentates were not
prepared to do, though they had a just appreciation of the offence offered
to all kingship in this audacious act. Even the name of the much-loved
Pucelle d'Orléans[373] was invoked in the cause, while a living lady, Dame
Isabeau Bernard de Laynes, was so overcome by her feelings that she broke
into verse, beginning--

  "Hereux celui qui sur la terre
  Vengera du roi d'Angleterre
  La mort donnée injustement
  Par ses subjects, chose inouye,
  De lui avoir osté la vie
  Quel horrible dérèglement."[374]

Zealous Catholics shook their heads and said that now the real tendencies
of the impious Reformation were appearing, which theme Bossuet developed
with great effect when he came to preach Henrietta's funeral sermon;[375]
others, more liberal-minded, contended that the two great religions of Rome
and Geneva could live together very well, as was proved in France, but that
the King of England had allowed all kinds of sects and sectaries, a course
which clearly could only lead to disaster; the Sieur de Marsys, the French
tutor of the young Princes of England, translated the story of the trial
into French that all Frenchmen might read and ponder the monstrous
document.[376] It was even said that the little Louis XIV, who was not yet
eleven years old, took to heart in a way hardly to be expected the murder
of his uncle, as if the child saw through the mists of the future another
royal scaffold and the horrors of 1793.

Henrietta received plenty of sympathetic words and visits of condolence,
but she received little else. It was believed that the condition to which
Mazarin was reduced by the Frondeurs had emboldened the rebels in England
to commit their last desperate act, but the instructions which the Cardinal
penned to the French ambassador in London, before the fatal January 30th,
show that his fear of the Spanish was a good deal stronger than his desire
to help the King of England, and after the tragedy he only expressed polite
regrets that France had not been able to follow the good example of
Holland, which had protested against the regicide, and made a great favour
of recalling the ambassador and refusing to recognize the republican agents
in Paris. It was reserved for an old servant of Henrietta to show sympathy
in a more practical manner. Du Perron, who at the request of the Queen of
England had been translated to the See of Evreux, found himself detained by
the Frondeurs, sorely against his will, in his own cathedral city. Ill, and
wounded in his tenderest feelings by a compulsory semblance of disloyalty,
he so took to heart the news of the terrible death of King Charles, to whom
he was greatly attached, that he became rapidly worse and died in a few
days.

The story of the heroic manner in which Charles met his terrible death
wrung tears from many an eye in Paris. Henrietta, who had lived with him
for twenty years, must have known that he would not fail in personal
courage. After all, misfortune was no novelty to the House of Stuart.
Charles' own grandmother had mounted the scaffold of Elizabeth, and of his
remoter ancestors who sat upon the throne of Scotland few had escaped a
violent death; when the moment came he was ready to fulfil the tragic
destiny of his race. To his widow his royal courage was so much a matter of
course that it brought her little consolation; but some real comfort she
might have known could she have foreseen that such ready acceptance of his
fate would not only blot out in the mind of his people the memory of his
many failings, but would throw a glory over his name and career which has
not completely faded even to the present day.

[Illustration: HENRY JERMYN, EARL OF ST. ALBANS

FROM AN ENGRAVING]

No one felt more than Henrietta that the King of England's fate was a
warning to those in authority. She watched with painful interest the course
of rebellion in France, and when at last she was able to see the
Queen-Regent,[377] she gave that obstinate lady some excellent advice,
dwelling particularly on the goodwill of the Parisians to their little
King, and the general dislike which was felt for Cardinal Mazarin. In 1649
the rebellion was repressed, but only that it might break out anew two
years later. During the second war of the Fronde, Henrietta, who thought
that English history was repeating itself in France,[378] sought Queen Anne
at S. Germain-en-Laye. There in an assembly, composed of both Frenchmen and
Englishmen, she pressed upon her sister-in-law counsels of wisdom and
moderation which it had been well had she herself followed in the past. "My
sister," said the haughty Spanish lady, who was weary of advice, specially
perhaps from one who had known so little how to manage her own concerns,
"do you wish to be Queen of France as well as of England?"

Henrietta's reply came promptly, but with a world of sadness in it, "I am
nothing, do you be something!"[379]

       *       *       *       *       *

Queen Henrietta Maria's position was considerably altered by her husband's
death; on the one hand she became a person of greater importance as the
adviser of her young son, who was hardly of an age to manage his own
affairs; on the other, she was deprived of Charles' powerful support, and
laid more open to the attacks of her opponents, whose fear it was to see
her two sons, Charles and James, who arrived in Paris shortly after their
father's death, fall under her influence.

Party feeling ran high at the exiled Court, which, with the suppression of
the first rebellion of the Fronde, took shape again. Henrietta was
respected by all--"our good Queen," she was affectionately called--but her
religion and her politics were disliked by the Church of England
constitutional party, which was strongly represented in Paris. Sir Edward
Hyde, Sir Edward Nicholas, and their friends, considered with some justice
that her counsels had been fatal to the master whose death had placed him
on a pinnacle, where assuredly he had never been in his lifetime. They
particularly disliked Jermyn, whose great influence with the Queen exposed
him to jealousy, and Lord Culpepper[380] and Henry Percy, his intimate
friends, were little less obnoxious to them. "I may tell you freely," wrote
Ormonde, the late Viceroy of Ireland, who arrived in Paris at the end of
1651, "I believe all these lords go upon as ill principles as may be; for I
doubt there is few of them that would not do anything almost, or advise the
King to do anything, that may probably recover his or their estates."[381]

Shortly after the King's death the Queen's party (or that of the Louvre, as
its enemies called it) was strengthened by the arrival of a recruit of
great importance, Henrietta's old friend Walter Montagu, whom she had never
seen since they parted in Holland in 1643. This gentleman, since his
apprehension at Rochester, had been in the hands of the Roundheads; he had
spent most of his time in the Tower of London, where he varied the monotony
of prison life by a spirited controversy with a fellow-prisoner, Dr. John
Bastwick, of pillory fame, who expressed himself greatly pleased with his
nimble-witted adversary. He also became very devout, and in proof thereof
wrote a volume of spiritual essays, which he published in 1647 with a
charming dedication to the Queen of England, wherein piety and flattery
were delicately blended. In spite of the dislike with which he was
regarded,[382] he was treated with consideration, partly no doubt through
the influence of his brother, the Earl of Manchester, with whom he was
always on good terms and who even supplied him with money, but partly also,
probably, because it was felt that the Queen of France, who pleaded over
and over again for his enlargement, must not be irritated beyond measure.
He was permitted to go to Tunbridge Wells on account of his health, which
suffered from his long confinement, and he was finally released on the
ground that he had never borne arms against the Parliament, which was true
enough, as he had been in prison almost since the beginning of the war.
Nevertheless, together with his friend Sir Kenelm Digby, who had reappeared
in England, he was banished the country under pain of death.[383] He
quickly repaired to Spa to drink the waters there, and thence passed to
Paris, where he was warmly welcomed by the Queens, both of England and
France.

The appearance of Walter Montagu--a frail worldling, as he calls
himself--in the rôle of a spiritual writer probably caused much the same
sort of amusement in Parisian circles as was caused in later days in those
of London by the publication of Richard Steel's _Christian Hero_. But it
was soon found that the long years of prison and danger had wrought a real
change in the whilom courtier, who now became a _dévot_ of the fashionable
Parisian type. He lost no time in putting into execution his former project
of embracing the ecclesiastical state. "Your old friend, Wat Montagu,"
wrote Lord Hatton in February, 1650-1, "hath already taken upon him the
_robe longue_ and received the first orders and intends before Easter (as I
am credibly assured) to take the order of Priesthood."[384] He sang his
first Mass at Pontoise in the following April, and in the autumn of the
same year received by the favour of Queen Anne the Abbey of Nanteuil, which
gave him the title of Abbé and a sufficient income. A few years later the
same royal patroness bestowed upon him the richer and more important Abbey
of S. Martin at Pontoise,[385] whose ample revenues he expended with such
liberality and tact as to win the gratitude of his less fortunate
compatriots, Catholics and Protestants alike.

One of the earliest questions which the Queen had to settle after her
husband's execution was that of her eldest son's plans. At first a journey
to Ireland was contemplated, but finally it was decided that the young King
should go to Scotland and try his fortune among those who had betrayed his
father. Henrietta herself was inclined to the Presbyterian alliance, in
which opinion she was encouraged by the Louvre party. English and French
Catholics alike believed that the silly Anglican compromise had met with
the fate it deserved, and that henceforward the spoils would be divided
between themselves and the Presbyterians. The remnant of Anglicans who
showed a gallant faith in their position which later events justified
distrusted these latter so deeply that they would almost have preferred the
King to remain an exile for ever to seeing him restored by their means, who
had sold the Blessed Martyr. As for the Presbyterian alliance with the
Catholics, that they considered the most natural thing in the world;[386]
for in their opinion both schools of thought aimed at an undue
subordination of the civil to the religious power, or as a Royalist
rhymester put it:--

  "A Scot and Jesuit, join'd in hand,
  First taught the world to say
  That subjects ought to have command
  And princes to obey."[387]

Nevertheless, in spite of opposition, Charles went off to Scotland, and
there, to the deep disgust of his Anglican friends, who had to learn that
he was a very different man from his father, he was persuaded to take the
Covenant, a step which they believed would not only alienate his best
friends, but prejudice his chances with Providence.[388] Even the Queen was
annoyed, unless, as her opponents hinted, she feigned her chagrin. But
annoyance soon gave place to anxiety. First came the news of the defeat of
Dunbar, then of the "crowning mercy" of Worcester; at last, after weeks of
suspense, Henrietta was able to welcome her son once more, safe indeed, but
worn out by almost incredible adventures and escapes, and cured for life by
his sojourn among them of any liking for the Presbyterians. It was no
wonder that the lad was depressed and irritable and unwilling to talk to
his mother or any one else, though she had still considerable influence
over him, so that it was complained that the King's secret council were his
mother, "Lord Jermyn, and Watt. Montagu, for that of greatest business he
consults with them only, without the knowledge of Marquis of Ormonde or Sir
Ed. Hyde."[389] She was able to persuade him (the more easily, no doubt,
from his Scotch experiences) to refrain from attending the Huguenot worship
at Charenton, which she thought might compromise him with his relatives of
France.

And, indeed, under the pressure of her many misfortunes, Henrietta was
becoming more of a bigot than she had ever been before.[390] In 1647 Father
Philip died.[391] The loss of this worthy old man, who was well aware of
the caution necessary to a Catholic queen living among heretics, exposed
her to the influence of other and less judicious counsellors, specially
after the death of her Grand Almoner,[392] which deprived her of another
moderating influence. When in 1650 the Anglican service, which had been
held at the Louvre since the first days of the exile, was suppressed,
Protestant gossip pointed out Walter Montagu as the author of this deed;
but that gentleman would reply nothing, even to so weighty an interrogator
as Sir Edward Hyde, except that the Queen of France was at liberty to give
what orders she pleased in her own house. Henrietta may have regretted this
sudden outburst of zeal on the part of her sister-in-law, but she found no
answer to make when that lady came to visit her and told her, with the
solemnity of a Spaniard and a _dévote_, that she thought the recent
troubles of her son the King of France must have been due to his mother's
weak toleration of heretical worship at the Louvre. History does not record
whether she changed her mind when this act of reparation was not followed
by an abatement of the rebellion; but henceforth the Anglican service was
held nowhere but in the chapel of Sir Richard Browne, the father-in-law of
John Evelyn, whose house was protected by his position as resident of the
King of England. There John Cosin, the exiled Dean of Durham, who still
kept up his impartial warfare against Rome on the one side and Geneva on
the other, struck heavy blows in the cause of the Church of England, not,
it was reported, without success. Religious feeling ran as high as ever it
had years before in London,[393] and the good Dean's controversial acerbity
was not sweetened when his only son went over to the enemy, by the
instrumentality, it was said, of Walter Montagu. Nor did the alert Abbé's
victories end there. Thomas Hobbes was still living among his learned
friends in the French capital. His religion, or lack of it, made him
suspect to Catholics and Protestants alike, and the Anglicans were
considerably chagrined when they heard that this dangerous person, on the
recommendation of Montagu, had been removed from the English Court, where
the young King had shown an unfortunate liking for his company. They would
fain have had the credit themselves of this judicious act, though perhaps
in later days, when they saw the "father of atheists" a welcome guest at
Whitehall, some of them may have been glad to be able to say that they had
had nothing to do with the odious persecution which he had suffered from
the bigots in Paris.

Three years after the suppression of the Anglican service at the Louvre,
other events occurred which did not tend to Henrietta's popularity with
some of her son's best friends. Henry, Duke of Gloucester, the youngest son
of Charles I, is now chiefly remembered as an actor in that most pathetic
of all farewell scenes, when he and his sister Elizabeth took leave of
their dying father. The little girl never recovered the shock of her
father's death, and died without seeing again the mother who longed for
her. Henry was too young to suffer thus, and at one time a rumour was about
which reached the ears of Sir Edward Nicholas that Cromwell intended to
make the child king; but in 1653 the authorities in England, touched by
compassion for his youth, or perhaps finding him more trouble than he was
worth, sent him over to his sister in Holland, whence, much against that
lady's will, he was fetched to Paris to his mother's side. Henrietta was
charmed with the little fellow, whom she had not seen since he was quite a
child. Though small and thin he was "beautiful as a little angel" and,
while resembling his aunt Christine in face, possessed the fascinating
manners of his father's family and was remarkably forward in book-learning.
The boy was made much of, not only by his mother, but by the whole French
Court. "You know they always like anything new,"[394] wrote the Queen of
England to her sister, and she goes on to relate with some amusement the
innumerable visits she received on account of this _petit chevalier_. She
was, no doubt, glad that he had made so good an impression upon his French
relatives, for she had schemes for his advancement which depended largely
on their favour.

The only one of her children whom Henrietta had been able to bring up in
her own faith was the dearest of all, the youngest little daughter, whom
she was wont to call her child of benediction. It is probable that during
her husband's lifetime she felt a scruple in trying to turn his children
from the religion which their father professed, particularly as he showed a
generous confidence in her in the matter; but now that he was gone she felt
her obligation to be over, and she gave much time and attention to
influencing the minds of her two elder sons, of whom she had good hopes.
She even, unmindful of the lessons of the past, entered anew into
negotiations with the Pope and, by means of the Duchess of Aiguillon, a
niece of Richelieu, held out, in the name of her son, hopes of untold
benefits to the Catholics of the British Isles if the Holy Father would
only assist the young and importunate monarch, who would certainly repay
his paternal kindness with interest.[395] But, nevertheless, the Queen knew
well enough the grave difficulties in the way of Charles' profession of the
Catholic faith, and she turned with relief to the little Henry in whose
youth she saw an easy prey. She had other arguments than those of religion
to bring forward. All sensible people, she told the boy, were now agreed
that the King, his brother, would not regain his throne. He knew the
extreme poverty to which the revolution had reduced his family; how as a
Protestant did he propose to live in a manner suitable to his rank as a
Prince of England? Whereas, if he would become a Catholic and take orders,
his aunt, the Queen of France, would make everything easy by procuring for
him a cardinal's hat, and by bestowing upon him such rich benefices as
would afford him a fitting provision.

Henry was a boy, little more than a child, but the circumstances of his
life had been such as early to teach him the necessity of self-interest.
His father's last counsels, given at a supreme moment, may have weighed
with him, for his well-known answer, "I will be torn to pieces ere they
make me a king while my brothers live," prove him to have been, at that
time, an unusually precocious child. Be this as it may, he showed an
unexpected reluctance to follow his mother's advice and an unaccountable
dislike of the Abbé Montagu, whom she appointed to be his governor. Perhaps
he remembered his father's distrust of that fascinating person; certainly
he knew that by following his teaching he would offend irrevocably the
brother on whom, in case of a restoration to their native land, his future
must depend. Henrietta herself was not blind to this aspect of the case,
and she tried to propitiate her eldest son, to whom she had given a promise
that she would not tamper with his brother's religion. "Henry has too many
acquaintances among the idle little boys of Paris," she wrote to Charles,
who was away from the city, "so I am sending him to Pontoise with the Abbé
Montagu, where he will have more quiet to mind his book."

To Pontoise accordingly Henry went, where Montagu attempted in vain to win
his confidence. After a while the boy was allowed to return to Paris, but
he showed himself so obstinately indocile that at night-time he and his
page (a lad who had been in the service of the Earl of Manchester, and who
doubtless enjoyed thwarting the renegade Abbé), "like Penelope's web ...
unspun" (as well as they two little young things, some few years above
thirty between them) whatever had passed in public.[396] The poor little
Prince owned, indeed, that he was called upon to deal with matters above
his years. His relatives at the French Court assured him that his first
duty was to his mother now that his father was dead. His Anglican friends
told him that a sovereign came before a mother, and that his obedience was
due to his eldest brother. That brother, moreover, took this view strongly
and wrote to him, saying in brief and pithy terms that, should he become a
Catholic, he would never see him again. It is not surprising that between
all these conflicting opinions Henry's young head was a little confused. He
was further perplexed when to other arguments in his mother's favour was
added the curious one that his conversion would make amends to her for the
breach of her marriage contract, by which she should have had control of
her children up to the age of twelve.

Henrietta was, indeed, steeling her heart to greater sternness than she had
ever used to any of her children, to whom she had always shown herself an
indulgent mother. It may be that, as men said, she was under the influence
of Montagu, who, however, was not wont to be very severe, and who did his
best to win over his pupil by kindness and by pointing out to him the
worldly advantages which a change of faith would bring--a lesson which the
luxuries of Pontoise, contrasting as they did with the poverty in which
many of Henry's Anglican friends were obliged to live, illustrated in a
practical manner. It may be that the Queen thought that a boy of her son's
age could not resist severity, and that she was determined to hold out
until she conquered the child for what she believed to be his good in this
world and the next; but she was to be defeated. While reports were being
industriously circulated through the city that Henry was on the point of
coming to a better mind, while in some churches thanksgivings were even
being offered for his conversion, his continued obstinacy was in reality
wearing out his mother's patience. She sent for her son, and after
receiving him with her usual affection she said that she required him to
hear the Abbé Montagu once again, and that then he must give her his final
answer. Montagu pleaded for an hour, expending upon this lad of fourteen
all those powers of persuasion and eloquence which enabled him to excel as
a popular preacher. But Henry's mind was made up, he was determined to cast
in his lot with his brother and England rather than with his mother and
France. He communicated his decision to the Queen, and at the fatal words
she turned away, saying that she wished to see his face no more. She left
the room without any sign of relenting, and her son discovered a little
later that her anger even cast his horses out of her stable. He was sobered
by the depth of her displeasure, but he reserved his chief wrath for
Montagu, to whom he attributed a harshness very far indeed from his
mother's natural character. Turning on his late tutor, he upbraided him
angrily: "Such as it is I may thank you for it, sir; and 'tis but reason
what my mother sayes to me I say to you: I pray be sure I see you no
more."[397] Then, turning on his heel, he showed his independence by
marching on to the English chapel at Sir Richard Browne's house (for it was
a Sunday morning), where he was received with such rejoicings as befitted
so signal a triumph over the rival religion. He could not, of course,
return to the Palais Royal, and he asked the hospitality of Lord Hatton,
who, both as Royalist and Anglican, was delighted to welcome his "little
great guest." His satisfaction was the greater because of the piquant
circumstance that he was himself a relative by marriage of the discomfited
Abbé. Henry, who was considered to have "most heroically runne through this
great worke beyond his yeres,"[398] made further proof of his unflinching
Protestantism by receiving a distinguished minister of Charenton, to whom
he gravely discoursed of his father's religious views. But he did not
remain long in Paris. Lord Ormonde arrived with letters and messages from
the King of England and bore the lad off to Cologne, where his eldest
brother was at that time keeping his Court.

       *       *       *       *       *

The years of the exile wore on not too cheerfully. Little by little
Henrietta lost the influence she had had over her eldest son, who came to
distrust Jermyn, perhaps because he saw the favourite rich and prosperous,
while others of his faithful servants were almost in need. Probably the
Queen was annoyed at the ill success of Charles in her own country, for it
is remarkable that the young man who possessed the French temperament, and
who was, in many respects, like his grandfather Henry IV, was never popular
in Paris, while James was greatly liked and admired. It is true that the
latter was a singularly gallant youth, and that he spoke the French
language much better than his brother, which accomplishment was in itself
enough to win Parisian hearts. "There is nothing, in my opinion, that
disfigures a person so much as not being able to speak," said that true
Frenchwoman Mademoiselle de Montpensier. As for Princess Henrietta, she was
looked upon quite as a French girl, and she was admired, not only for her
beauty, but for her exquisite dancing, a talent which she inherited from
her mother. It was on account of this beloved child that the widowed Queen
of England, in the last years of the exile, came out again a little into
the world and held receptions at the Palais Royal, which proved so
fascinating as to be serious rivals to those of the grave Spanish Queen of
France. At them she was always pleased to welcome Englishmen, for she loved
the land of her happy married life in spite of the treatment she had
received there. "The English were led away by fanatics," she was wont to
say; "the real genius of the nation is very different." So jealous was she
of the good name of her son's subjects in critical Paris that once when an
English gentleman came to her Court in a smart dress, tied up with red and
yellow ribbons, she begged the friend who had introduced him to advise him
"to mend his fancy," lest he should be ridiculed by the French.

But ere this another blow had fallen upon Henrietta, and this time she was
wounded, indeed, in the house of her friends. As early as 1652 France
recognized the Government of the Commonwealth, but in 1657 the Queen
learned that her nephew, acting under the advice of Cardinal Mazarin, who
was impelled by his usual dread of Spain, had even made a treaty with
Cromwell, "_ce scélérat_," as she was accustomed to call him. By the terms
of this treaty her three sons were banished from France, and she herself
was only permitted to remain with her young daughter because public opinion
would not have tolerated the expulsion of a daughter of Henry IV. The
Princes went off to Bruges, where Charles fixed his Court, and to mark
their displeasure they took service under the Spaniard. Henrietta had to
bear the insults as best she could. She had nowhere to go; for when a year
earlier she had thought of a journey to Spain, it had been intimated to her
that his Catholic Majesty would prefer her to remain on the French side of
the Pyrenees.

The only satisfactory aspect of the matter was that now the Queen felt it
possible to press for the payment of her dowry. Her relatives of France,
particularly Queen Anne, were liberal, but Henrietta was made to feel now
and then

              "how salt his food who fares
  Upon another's bread--how steep his path
  Who treadeth up and down another's stairs,"[399]

and, besides, hers was too proud a nature to relish dependence. She knew
that any scheme likely to spare the coffers of France would be grateful to
Mazarin, whose immense riches, splendid palace, and magnificent collection
of pictures and curios, the fruit of an unbounded avarice, were the talk of
Paris. The request was proffered. The reply came, and Mazarin carried it
himself to the Queen. Speaking with the Italian accent, which his long
years of residence in France had not been able to eradicate, he explained
to her that the Protector refused to give her that for which she asked,
because, as he alleged, she had never been recognized as Queen of England.
The refusal was bad enough, but the gross insult with which it was
accompanied could not fail to cut Henrietta to the heart, but she did not
love Mazarin and she had too much spirit to betray her chagrin. "This
outrage does not reflect on me," she said proudly, "but on the King, my
nephew, who ought not to permit a daughter of France to be treated _de
concubine_. I was abundantly satisfied with the late King, my lord, and
with all England; these affronts are more shameful to France than to me."

This episode did not decrease Henrietta's hatred for Cromwell. It was even
said by one of her women, who played the part of spy, that she was
overheard plotting his murder with Lord Jermyn. But she had not long to
endure his usurpation of the seat of her husband, whose regal title she
believed him to have refused solely from fear of the army. On September
3rd, 1658, the anniversary of Dunbar and Worcester, Oliver Cromwell died
amid a tumult of storm, sympathetic with the passing of that mighty spirit.
"It is the Devil come to carry old Noll off to Hell" was the comment of the
Royalists, who kept high revel in Paris and elsewhere at the news of his
death, though the Queen, whom long sorrow was at last making slow to hope,
did not join in the jubilation. "Whether it be because my heart is so
wrapped up in melancholy as to be incapable of receiving any [joy]," she
wrote to Madame de Motteville, "or that I do not as yet perceive any good
advantages likely to accrue to us from it, I will confess to you that I
have not felt myself any very great rejoicing, my greatest being to witness
that of my friends."[400]

It was not, indeed, until the Treaty of the Pyrenees in 1659 that there
seemed to be solid hope for the King of England. Then Charles left his
Court at Bruges, and traversing all France, had an interview with Don Louis
de Haro, the powerful minister of Spain, who received him with all ceremony
as a sovereign prince. Mazarin still obstinately refused to receive him,
but he had an interview with his uncle, the Duke of Orleans, at Blois, and
afterwards passed a few days with his mother at Colombes, on the outskirts
of Paris, where she had a small country house. Both mother and son may have
been to some extent hopeful, but neither knew how near the day was when the
prophecy of a French rhymester after Worcester would be fulfilled, and

          "la fortune
  N'ayant plus pour luy de rancune
  Le mettra plus haut qu'il n'est bas."[401]

[Footnote 367: "Amyd the Arrests lately made one is for the seazure of the
King's revenue to the use of the Parliament and in other things they doe
soe imitate the late proceedings of England that it plainly appears in what
schoole some of their members have been bred who make them believe they are
able to instruct them how to make a rebellion w^{th} out breaking their
allegiance."--Dispatch of Sir R. Browne, January 22nd, 1649. Add. MS.,
12,186, f. 9.]

[Footnote 368: "Letters from Paris received January 15th, 1648," p. 6.]

[Footnote 369: "Une sainte et la mère des pauvres."--Mme de Motteville.]

[Footnote 370: Quoted by Mme. de Motteville with reference to this
occasion.]

[Footnote 371: The Chaillot tradition, which is found in the MS. _Histoire
chronologique de tout l'ordre de la Visitation_, 1693 (Bib. Mazarine, MS.
2436), and in _La Vie de la très haute et très puissante Princesse
Henrietta Marie de France, reine de la Grande Bretagne_, of Cotolendi, who
derived much of his information from the Chaillot nuns, places the scene of
Henrietta's reception of the news of her husband's death in the Carmelite
convent, and Cotolendi represents the King's letter as delivered on that
occasion; but, Father Cyprien, in his account, says that the Queen was at
the Louvre when she heard of her husband's fate, and though he is not
always accurate, it seems probable that the scene of such an event would
remain in his mind. Moreover, Madame de Motteville says no word of the
Carmelite convent in this connection. It seems likely that the nuns of
Chaillot confused the Queen's account of the reception of the news of her
husband's death with that of his last letter. The above account has been
written on this hypothesis; the letter which Cotolendi quotes was no doubt
preserved with other memorials of the Queen among the Chaillot archives.]

[Footnote 372: John Ward: _Diary_, 1648-79 (1839), p. 161.]

[Footnote 373: "Exhortation de la Pucelle d'Orléans à tous les princes de
la terre de faire une Paix générale tous ensemble pour venger la mort du
roy d'Angleterre par une guerre toute particulière. A Paris. MDCXLIX."]

[Footnote 374: Fonds Français MS., 12,159. _Remonstrances aux
Parlementaires de la mort ignominieuse de leur roy dédiées a la Reyne
d'Angleterre._]

[Footnote 375: The same argument is developed in a curious tract, which
shows the rather cool attitude of some of the English Catholics to Charles,
entitled, _Nuntius a Mortuis, hoc est, stupendum ... ac tremendum
colloquium inter Manes Henrici VIII et Caroli I Angliae Regum_ (1649).]

[Footnote 376: MS. Français, 12,159.]

[Footnote 377: Henrietta, even before the lesson of her husband's death,
urged the Queen-Regent to show moderation. She prevailed upon her to
receive the members of the rebellious Parliament on the day of Barricades.]

[Footnote 378: "Vous diriés que Dieu veut humilier les Roys et les princes.
Il a commencé par nous en Engleterre; je le prie que la France ne nous
suive pas, les affairs ysy alant tout le mesme chemin que les
nostres."--_Lettres de Henriette Marie à sa soeur Christine_, p. 100.]

[Footnote 379: "Le veritable entretien de la Reyne d'Angleterre avec le roy
et la Reyne à S. Germain-en-Laye en presence de plusieurs Seigneurs de la
Cour et autres personnes de consideration (1652)."]

[Footnote 380: It was this nobleman of whom Charles I said that he had no
religion at all.]

[Footnote 381: _Nicholas Papers_, I, 293.]

[Footnote 382: To which the following extract from a Roundhead newspaper
bears witness: "Onely one thing we have notice of that she [the Queen] hath
begged of his Holiness a Cardinalls Hat for Wat Montaue. Then (boyes) for
sixpence a peece you may see a fine sight in the Tower if the Axe prevent
not and send him after the Cardinall (would have been) of Canterbury, who
went before to take up lodging for the rest of the Queen's favourites in
Purgatory."--_Mercurius Britannicus_, February, 1645.]

[Footnote 383: In March, 1649, he was given permission to go abroad. The
sentence of banishment is dated August 31st, 1649; he was on the Continent
considerably before the latter date.]

[Footnote 384: _Nicholas Papers_, I, 220.]

[Footnote 385: He was appointed Abbot Commendatory in 1654, succeeding
Gondi, the first Archbishop of Paris, but "sur certaines difficultes
survenues sur ses Bulles en leur fulmination," he did not take possession
of the Abbey until 1657. See _Histoire de l'Abbaye de S. Martin de Pontoise
Bibliothèque Mazarine_. MS. 3368. Pontoise ... Auttore, D. Roberto Racine
(1769).]

[Footnote 386: "I do not at all marvel that any man who can side with the
Presbyterians, or that is Presbyterian cloth, turn Papist, I would as soon
be the one as the other."--Sir E. Nicholas to Lord Hatton, _Nicholas
Papers_, I, 297.]

[Footnote 387: _Mercurius Pragmaticus_, October 12-20, 1647. This newspaper
(a feature of which was four topical verses prefixed to each number) was
written by Nedham, a journalist who had formerly written the parliamentary
newspaper _Mercurius Britannicus_, and who afterwards returned to the
Roundheads. He was pardoned after the Restoration. In 1661 he collected and
published the verses of _Mercurius Pragmaticus_ under the title of _A Short
History of the English Rebellion_.]

[Footnote 388: "If the King ... take the covenant, God will never prosper
him nor the world value him."--_Nicholas Papers_, I, 165.]

[Footnote 389: _Nicholas Papers_, I, p. 298.]

[Footnote 390: In 1651 she dismissed her servants "that will not turn
papists, or cannot live of themselves without wages."--_Nicholas Papers_,
I, p. 237.]

[Footnote 391: Henrietta was so much attached to him that she went to see
him in his sickness at the Oratorians' House in the Rue S. Honoré. See
_Histoire des troubles de la Grande Bretagne_, by Robert Monteith
(Salmonet), 1659.]

[Footnote 392: Walter Montagu became Henrietta's Grand Almoner about this
time; probably he succeeded Du Perron.]

[Footnote 393: The Church of England party was extremely annoyed at the
publication of a book entitled _La Chaine du Hercule Gaulois_, in which it
was asserted that Charles I died a Catholic. Add. MS., 12,186.]

[Footnote 394: _Lettres de Henriette Marie à sa soeur Christine_, p. 104.]

[Footnote 395: The letter of the Duchess is among the Roman Transcripts
P.R.O.]

[Footnote 396: _An exact narrative of the attempts made upon the Duke of
Gloucester_ (1654), p. 15.]

[Footnote 397: _An exact narrative of the attempts made upon the Duke of
Gloucester_ (1654), p. 13.]

[Footnote 398: Lord Hatton. _Nicholas Papers_, II, p. 143.]

[Footnote 399: Dante: _Paradiso_, XVII.]

[Footnote 400: Green: _Letters of Queen Henrietta Maria_, p. 388. Madame de
Motteville: _Mémoires_ (1783), V, p. 276.]

[Footnote 401: Lovel: _La Muse Historique_ (1857), t. I, p. 174.]



CHAPTER XI

THE FOUNDRESS OF CHAILLOT

  No cruell guard of diligent cares, that keep
  Crown'd woes awake; as things too wise for sleep.
  But reverent discipline, and religious fear,
  And soft obedience, find sweet biding here;
  Silence, and sacred rest; peace and pure joyes;
  Kind loves keep house, ly close, make no noise,
  And room enough for Monarchs, where none swells
  Beyond the kingdomes of contentfull Cells.

                            R. CRASHAW (out of Barclay)


There is a portion of Henrietta's life which stands apart from its general
current, which seems, indeed, rather an acted commentary on her career than
an integral portion of it: when she retires from the schemes, the passions,
the loves, and the hates of the world, and, laying aside the trappings of
her rank, appears as a humble and sorrowful woman, striving to read, by the
light of prayer and meditation, the lesson of her stormy days. The Queen of
England is gone, and in her stead is seen the foundress of Chaillot.

The temper which produced this fruit must long have been growing up, but it
became active and apparent when the great blow of her life came upon her.
While she was a wife, even a wife separated by evil fortune from her
husband, she continued to live, as far as her straitened means permitted,
in a manner suitable to her rank, and she did not refuse to take part in
the splendid amusements of Paris, which were congenial to her gay
disposition. She was seen at lotteries and dances; she accepted the feasts
and dinners which the French royal family offered in her honour. Her
attendance was as brilliant as her fallen fortunes would allow of, and her
faded beauty was set off to the best advantage by the beautiful dress which
was then worn by ladies of rank.

But with the death of Charles all this was changed. She ceased to accept
invitations, and she rarely went abroad into the streets of Paris, except
to visit some religious house. In her own house the strictest simplicity
was used. Most of the maids of honour were dismissed, and the Queen
exchanged her silks and jewels for a mourning robe, which she wore to the
end of her life.

Her love of dress had been as great as might have been expected of a woman
of her beauty, her rank, and, above all, her nationality. Once in her early
married life she expressed great pleasure in a magnificent gown studded
with jewels which she was wearing. Her confessor, the stern Bérulle, who
was present, reproved her somewhat sharply for her vanity and frivolity.
"Ah, mon père, do not be angry with me," pleaded the young Queen, half
laughing and half penitent. "I am young now, but when I am forty I will
change all this, and become quite good and serious." Her light words were
prophetic, for she was in her fortieth year when she became a widow.

Contemporary prints show of what fashion was her widow's dress. It was of
some black stuff made quite plainly, except that the bodice was shaped to a
point in front, and it was almost high at the neck; the only relief was a
white linen collar, falling down over the shoulders, and matching the
cuffs, which turned back over the wide sleeves. From the head fell a long,
heavy black veil.

This sorrowful garb was the outward expression of a grief which, like most
deep grief, craved the consolation of quiet and retirement. And where, in
the Paris of that day, could quiet be found, except within the protecting
walls of a religious house?

Henrietta, since her return to Paris in 1644, had frequented the Carmelite
convent which her childhood loved, and in her first sorrow she would gladly
have forsaken the world altogether, and remained there among the nuns;[402]
but her duties were incompatible with this step. Her young sons required
her help to restore their shattered fortunes, and, above all, her youngest
daughter needed a mother's care; after her husband's death her worldly
occupations increased rather than diminished, and it was these occupations
which cost her the loss of her calm retreat among the Carmelite nuns.

The daughters of S. Teresa are vowed to an austere separation from all
things worldly, and their rule could not brook the constant coming and
going, the noise and the disturbance which waited upon a Queen who was also
a politician. They were obliged to request the Queen of England to forgo
her visits, and she, however sorrowfully, recognized the justice of their
desire and withdrew, to seek another retirement more suited to the
conditions of her case.

A hasty glance at a map of seventeenth-century Paris will show the great
number of religious houses which then existed, and it might be surmised
that to make a choice among them would be no easy matter; but Henrietta's
circumstances were peculiar, and she had little difficulty in selecting the
one most fitted to them.

[Illustration: HENRIETTA MARIA

FROM AN ENGRAVING]

Some forty years earlier the wise and gentle spirit of S. Francis de Sales
had conceived the idea of a religious foundation in which women, delicately
nurtured and well educated, might live in greater freedom of spirit and
less austerity of body than in the older Orders. He was fortunate enough to
find a woman[403] capable of translating his ideas into fact, and the Order
of the Visitation flourished exceedingly, and by the middle of the
seventeenth century had spread all over France.

Paris was naturally one of the first places to which the new Order came.
The community, which boasted that it had once been ruled over by Mother
Chantal herself, after some wanderings finally settled down in the Rue S.
Antoine, within a stone's-throw of the grim fortress of the Bastille.
Though the tide of fashion had set definitely westward since the final
abandonment of the Place Royal by Louis XIII, the position was still a good
one. Next door was the fine Hôtel de Mayence, which still stands as a
witness of departed glories, but of the convent nothing remains except the
church, which, though but small, was considered in the seventeenth century
"one of the neatest in all Paris."[404] Madame de Motteville was the means
of introducing this convent to Henrietta's notice. Her own young sister, to
whom she was tenderly attached, had lately entered the house as a novice,
greatly against her wishes; but in her visits to the girl she had been so
won by the piety and kindness of the nuns that she begged the Queen of
England to make their acquaintance.

Henrietta was not without solicitation to go elsewhere. "Messieurs de Port
Royal," those remarkable men whose doings were causing such a stir in the
religious world of France, were anxious that she should come to Port Royal,
thinking perhaps to strengthen their position by so direct a connection
with royalty. They offered her apartments, and, what must have been more
tempting, some much-needed money. But the invitation was not accepted,
though the reasons for its refusal are unknown. They may, however, be
conjectured, for it is difficult to imagine Henrietta, the true daughter of
Henry IV, in the repressive atmosphere of Jansenism, and it may be surmised
that had she entered Port Royal she would not have remained there long.

The Rue S. Antoine was more attractive.[405] Henrietta retained a childish
and pleasing memory of S. Francis himself, who, at the marriage of
Christine of France, had come up to the little Princess, then aged about
ten, and, according to his wont, "blending piety and politeness," had
assured her that one day she should receive even greater honours than those
now offered to her sister, honours which perhaps his experienced eye could
see from her expression she was envying with all her childish heart. She
recalled his words when she became Queen of England, and later still she
read into them a deeper meaning when she felt herself to be the recipient
of the honours of unusual suffering. But this link with the remote past was
probably of less interest to her than the presence in the convent of a
lady, destined to become her dearest personal friend, whose romantic story
must be told if one of the strongest influences on Henrietta's later years
is to be appreciated.

Louise de la Fayette was the daughter of one of the noblest houses of
Auvergne, and she bore a name which was to be renowned in the history of
France. She had a childish taste for the cloister, but when she was about
fourteen years of age, her uncle, who was then Bishop of Limoges, presented
her to Queen Anne, who received her as one of her maids of honour.

Louise was a beautiful girl, and she possessed besides many charms and
accomplishments, of which a sweet singing voice was not the least. She
quickly made her mark at Court; but, if her biographers are to be believed,
she retained her simple, pious spirit, and preferred remaining quietly in
her room to direct attendance upon her royal mistress, whose jealousy,
indeed, was soon aroused by the unusual interest shown in the girl by her
husband.

The relations between Louis XIII and his wife were, as is well known, most
unsatisfactory; but at the same time the King was a man of slow passions
and of a certain dull virtue. He liked the society of pretty women, but
while he loaded his favourites with honours and confidences, which must
have cut Anne's proud spirit to the quick, he was usually strictly Platonic
in his intercourse with them. To this position he elected Louise de la
Fayette. She danced for him, sang for him, talked to him, and every day
seemed to increase the spell which her vivacity cast over his slow spirit.
But other eyes were watching her. In the French Court of that time all
depended upon the frown or smile of Richelieu, who himself was ever on the
watch to gain valuable allies. He marked Louise de la Fayette, and
determined to enlist her in his army of spies.

But in this case the Cardinal had reckoned without his host. Louise was
only a young girl, but she had a spirit capable even of resisting
Richelieu. "She had more courage than all the men of the Court,"[406] wrote
Madame de Motteville. She refused to pass on the secrets of the King, or to
play in any way into the hands of his minister, whose jealous anger was
aroused and who determined to part her from her royal friend.

It is not surprising that in these circumstances the girl's mind should
have reverted to her old wishes for a conventual life, but there was
another reason, which, long after, in the safe retreat of Chaillot, she
confessed to her friend Madame de Motteville. Louis was a virtuous man, but
he was an unloved and unloving husband, and she was young and beautiful.
There were signs that the Platonic friendship was ripening into something
stronger and warmer. Louise became alarmed. That which to many women was an
honour, to her pure and upright soul was disgrace unspeakable, and she
determined to fly to the only refuge which the times and the circumstances
permitted her, and to bury her sorrows and her temptations within the walls
of the cloister.

It was hard to persuade the King to part with her, but she had a powerful
ally. Richelieu sent for the royal confessor, Father Caussin, the Jesuit,
and in the bland tones which he knew so well how to use, he gravely
discussed with him the moral dangers of such a friendship as that which
existed between Louis and his wife's maid of honour. Not, he hastened to
add, that he believed that any harm was done, but such things were always
dangerous. The Cardinal thought that he was exactly adapting his remarks to
his audience; but Caussin, who hated and distrusted him, was too acute to
be taken in, and had events gone no farther Louise de la Fayette might have
remained in the world for Father Caussin. But the girl herself, who had
better reason than any one to know the truth of Richelieu's words, and
whose own heart was beginning to betray her, sought the Jesuit's advice. At
first he was a little rough with her. He did not believe that a girl of
seventeen, luxuriously brought up and petted like "a bird of the Indies,"
could really desire to embrace the austerities and abnegations of a
conventual life. He hinted that she was piqued by the refusal of the King
to grant her some request, or that her self-love had been wounded in one of
the little contretemps of Court life. Louise answered gently and quietly.
Nothing had occurred to distress or alarm her in any way. The King's
kindness was unchanged, and so great that at any time he would enable her
to make a splendid marriage; but she had only one desire, and that was to
leave the world. Caussin then pointed out to her the hardness of the
cloister for a girl brought up as she had been, but her answer again was
ready. She was not thinking of a stern Order, for which she knew her health
to be unequal; she wished to enter among the Visitandines, or Filles de
Sainte Marie, as they were more commonly called, whose rule was expressly
framed for gently nurtured and delicate women. The only regret she would
carry away with her, she added, with an irresistible touch of human nature,
was the knowledge that her retirement from the Court would give pleasure to
Cardinal Richelieu.

By these arguments Caussin was won over, but the King still had to be
reckoned with. Louis, however, was superstitiously religious, and pressed
at the same time by his confessor, by the Cardinal, and by Louise, he was
unable to resist. The day of departure arrived; the girl went off gay and
smiling, though her heart was sinking, so that when she thought no one was
looking she crept aside to catch a last glimpse of the man she loved; but
many of the bystanders were in tears, and even Queen Anne was grave and
sympathetic. As for the King, his voice was so broken by grief that he
could scarcely whisper the words of farewell, and afterwards his misery was
so excessive and so prolonged as to give colour to the suspicions that had
been abroad. He could not bear to remain in the place which had witnessed
his idol's departure, and he fled to Versailles, at that time a small
hunting-box, where he remained for some time plunged in the deepest
melancholy.[407]

Louise de la Fayette's retirement from the world caused a great sensation
in Paris, and the convent in the Rue S. Antoine became a place of
fashionable resort, so that Richelieu began to fear that the nun's
influence might be as dangerous as that of the maid of honour. He remarked
with great unction that he thought it a pity that the religious life should
be thus broken in upon; and as the nuns and the young novice were of the
same opinion, the number of visitors decreased. But the King could not be
refused. He was anxious to see Louise once more before her bright beauty
was shrouded by the religious habit; and in this wish he was supported by
Caussin, who still hoped to use her as a political ally. One day Louis
arrived quite unexpectedly in the Rue S. Antoine and knocked at the door of
the convent. He refused to avail himself of an invitation to enter the
enclosure, but across the dividing grill he held a long and eager
conversation with the young girl, feasting his eyes the while upon the face
which there is reason to think he never saw again. Meanwhile, the Mother
Superior, with commendable discretion, retired to as great a distance as
conventual propriety would permit, and the King's attendants on the other
side did the like. Shortly after this visit Louise put on the religious
habit, and when the necessary interval had elapsed the irrevocable vows
were taken. The King refused to be present at the profession, but a large
company of the Court attended the ceremony, including Queen Anne, who
witnessed, doubtless with triumph in her heart, the self-immolation of her
innocent rival.

Louise de la Fayette had spent many quiet years in her convent when
Henrietta first visited it in 1651.[408] She had won the respect of all the
community, and she had been honoured by the special notice of Mother
Chantal. "This girl will be one of the great superiors of our Order," said
the aged saint. It is not probable that she and the Queen of England had
met in the past, but her story cannot have been unknown to the sister of
Louis XIII, and when the introduction was made by Madame de Motteville,
acquaintance ripened at once into friendship. There was much in the nun's
story to arouse the Queen's sympathy, for was not Louise de la Fayette one
more of the victims of Richelieu?

Henrietta was received in the Rue S. Antoine with the respect due to the
blood of Henry IV, and with the affectionate sympathy which her sorrows
called forth, particularly from the superior,[409] a wide-minded woman who
had been educated as a Protestant, and who perhaps in consequence had
followed with special interest the course of events in England. But though
such difficulties as had arisen among the Carmelites were not likely to
occur in a convent of the Visitation, yet, from the scantiness of the
accommodation, it was difficult to receive a royal lady for more than very
short visits, and the position of the house in the centre of Paris rendered
it rather unsuitable for such retirement as the Queen sought. Besides, her
heart yearned for something that would be more truly her own. Other royal
ladies had made religious foundations. Her mother had had her Carmelites,
her sister-in-law had her beautiful Val de Grace. Might not she also become
the foundress of a house which should shelter her while living, and cherish
her memory and pray for her soul after her death? It happened that just at
this time one of the principal nuns had the similar desire to extend the
Order by the foundation of a daughter house. Helène Angélique Lhulier was
no ordinary woman. In the heyday of her youth and beauty, "when she was the
most attached to the world, and the most sought by several persons of the
first quality," she left all at the bidding of S. Francis de Sales, who
wrote her the following short and pithy note: "My daughter, enter religion
immediately, notwithstanding all the oppositions of nature." Her force of
character was remarkable, and particularly her strength of will, which, it
was said, enabled her to do things which appeared impossible. All her
courage and tenacity were called forth by this new enterprise, to which,
learning of Henrietta's desire, she determined to devote herself. Indeed,
the obstacles in the way seemed insurmountable. The house in the Rue S.
Antoine was far from rich, and it had recently made a settlement in the
Faubourg S. Jacques, which had exhausted its resources. The Queen of
England was known to be in no position to give monetary help, and to
complete the difficulties the Archbishop of Paris looked very coldly upon
the scheme.

But Henrietta's friends were determined that she should have the interest
and consolation on which she had set her heart. Mother Lhulier and Mother
de la Fayette, whom the Queen hoped to see the true foundation-stones of
the new edifice, were untiring in their efforts, and Queen Anne showed
herself on this, as on many other occasions, a real friend to her widowed
sister-in-law. The decision was so far made that Henrietta, though she had
no money, and no prospect of money, set about the agreeable task of finding
a home for the new community.

The Queen went hither and thither looking at properties which were in the
market, but none pleased her so much as that which had belonged to her old
friend the Marshal de Bassompierre, who was recently dead. This beautiful
mansion, which had been built by Catherine de' Medici and honoured more
than once by the presence of Richelieu, stood in one of the best positions
in the immediate environs of the city, on rising ground overlooking the
Seine, and commanding magnificent views of the surrounding country. It was
approached by the leafy Cours la Reine, the most fashionable promenade in
Paris, where on summer evenings as many as eight hundred coaches might be
counted, and though the house and grounds were in the village of Chaillot,
the Faubourg de la Conférence had crept up so that the two almost joined.
To the charms of nature were added those of art. Bassompierre was one of
the most accomplished men of his time, and he so lavished the resources of
his ample means and of his refined taste upon his favourite residence, that
it became one of the sights of Paris, and as such was visited by John
Evelyn, who came away delighted with the "gardens, terraces, and rare
prospects,"[410] which he beheld there. Since the death of the owner the
house had fallen on evil days. Bassompierre's heir, the Count de Tillières,
was unable to take possession of the property, and it became a place of
very evil fame, the resort of lewd persons, who defiled its stately halls
and fair walks with scenes of shameless revelry.

Henrietta was always rapid in her decisions, and she speedily made up her
mind that here and nowhere else was the dwelling-place which would at once
furnish an ideal convent for the religious and a pleasant retirement for
herself. She hurried back to the Rue S. Antoine and carried off two of the
nuns to inspect the house. They found it indeed most beautiful, and their
only scruple was that it was too fine and inconsistent with their vow of
poverty; but they waived this objection, not quite unwillingly perhaps,
when they saw how the Queen's heart was set upon Chaillot, and how she was
diverted from her sorrows by the pleasure which she took in her plans for
installing her friends and herself in this charming retreat.

Mother Lhulier took legal steps to gain possession of the property, but
grave difficulties, which perhaps had not been foreseen, arose. Tillières
and the other heirs of Bassompierre claimed the property, but they had
never been in possession of it, and their rights seem to have been ignored
in the transaction with the nuns, whose purchase-money was to be applied to
the liquidation of the late owner's debts. The Count, though he saved his
reputation as a courtier by behaving with great civility to Henrietta, and
assuring her that she was welcome to live in the house as long as she
pleased, provided she did not turn it into a convent, determined to fight
the matter in the law courts. He was supported by the magistrates of
Chaillot, who probably did not wish to see a profitable place of pleasure
closed, and by a large number of persons, some of high quality, who were in
the habit of frequenting it. The pious chronicler of the Order of the
Visitation[411] sees behind these human figures that of the arch-fiend
himself, who was interested in preventing a piece of territory which was
specially his from lapsing to the service of God. But good, as we know, is
stronger than evil. The judges of the case, almost against their will, and
certainly under the direct inspiration of Providence, gave the decision in
favour of the nuns, whose joy was only dashed by the hard condition that a
large sum of money must be forthcoming in twenty-four hours.

The case appeared hopeless. Neither Henrietta nor the nuns had a tenth of
the sum required, and money was just then very scarce; but Mother Lhulier
was a woman to whom seeming impossibilities were only opportunities. She
made the need known to all whom she knew, and then waited in quiet
assurance for the result of her appeal. Her faith was rewarded. Just before
the close of the specified time of grace, a rich gentleman, who was a great
friend of hers, came to say that he was willing to guarantee the whole
amount.

But even now the troubles were not at an end. Tillières was determined to
fight to the last, and he enlisted on his side the ecclesiastical
authorities, who from the first had not looked very kindly upon the project
of the new foundation. The Archbishop of Paris was still that same Jean
François de Gondi who had been so deeply affronted by the refusal to allow
him to officiate at Henrietta's wedding. He was now a very old man, but he
was none the less willing to avenge an ancient slight. He pointed out
petulantly that there were already two houses of the Visitation in Paris
and another in the neighbourhood of S. Denys. That the charge of the new
convent would certainly come upon the public, and that a household of
fifteen persons, however pious, could not be supported for nothing. He
ended up by remarking with great acerbity that exiled queens with political
business in their hands should not choose religious houses as their place
of retirement.

"However," we are told, "God who holds the hearts of the great in His hand,
soon changed that of the Prelate," and the instrument of this happy
conversion was Queen Anne. Attempts were made to play on her cupidity and
that of her young son by pointing out that Chaillot had originally been a
royal residence, and would make again another nice country house for the
King; but she refused to listen, and devoted herself to winning over the
Archbishop, who was far too good a courtier not to yield quickly to such
persuasion. His views changed with a wonderful rapidity, and very soon
Henrietta had the happiness of knowing that the last obstacle was removed,
and that nothing stood in the way of the realization of her wish.

She herself undertook the work of preparing the house for the reception of
the nuns. Hers was a busy, active nature, and she was never happier than
when spending herself for those she loved. Some of the furniture she
supplied herself and some was sent from the Rue S. Antoine, where the
little band of women under the guidance of Mother Lhulier and Mother de la
Fayette was ready to set out. The removal took place upon the 21st of June,
1651. The nuns were seen off from their old home by Vincent de Paul,[412]
that strange figure of seventeenth-century Paris, whose shabby _soutane_
was found in the _salon_ of the noble as in the hovel of the poor, and
whose advice was sought at the council table of the King as in the home of
the meanest of his subjects. He was at this time director of the mother
house, and though he is not known ever to have set foot within the convent
of Chaillot, his memory is linked with it by the blessing which he bestowed
upon its beginning.

At Chaillot Henrietta was waiting, radiant and expectant. She greeted her
guests with delight, giving perhaps a specially warm welcome to two of the
younger members of the little band of nine or ten--one, the only novice of
the house, Eugénie Madeline Berthaud, the sister of her dear friend Madame
de Motteville; the other a Scotch girl, Mary Hamilton[413] by name, whom in
earlier days she had welcomed at her Court in London, but whose desire for
a conventual life was such that leaving home and country she had set out
for Paris, where she entered the convent in the Rue S. Antoine, without
knowing a single word of the French tongue.

Henrietta led the nuns all over the house, discoursing upon its charms and
conveniences, and dwelling specially upon the beauties of the situation.
She had arranged that her own rooms should be in the front, overlooking the
public road, while the nuns were to take the quieter apartments which faced
the garden. She was surprised and disconcerted when these ladies, who were
less used to palaces than she was, objected to the splendour of the lodging
provided for them, and insisted upon retiring to the garrets, which they
said were more suitable to their vow of poverty, and whence they were only
induced to descend some days later, at the Queen's special request, and
when she had carefully removed from the downstairs rooms all that
savoured of worldly vanity; but neither this little difficulty nor the more
serious trouble that, owing to the continued opposition of Tillières, it
was necessary to defend the house with a guard of archers, could damp
Henrietta's joy on such a day. She spent several hours with the nuns in
happy talk and plans, and then drove back to the Palais Royal, where she
was living at this time, happier perhaps than she had ever been since her
husband's death.

Chaillot was honoured by letters patent from the Crown of France, which
gave it the status of a royal foundation and Henrietta the title of
foundress. When the enclosure was set up about a week after the arrival of
the nuns, a number of distinguished persons assisted at the ceremony,
though it had to be done quickly for fear of disturbance from those who had
struggled so hard to keep this fair property out of the hands of the
Church. Henrietta heard the first Mass which was sung in the chapel with a
triumph which was all the sweeter to her bold and enterprising nature from
the many difficulties which had beset the undertaking.

Congratulations were not lacking. Among the most graceful were those which
Walter Montagu made public two years later in a dedication to the Queen of
a volume of religious essays. "Under that notion, Madam," he wrote, "of an
aspirer to a more transcendent Majestie I present your Religious Mind these
entertainments: which will be the less unmannerly the greater privacie and
retreat they intrude themselves upon; and truly, as your life stands now
dispos'd the greater part of your time is favourable for such admissions.
Since you pass the most of it in that holy retirement, whither you have
carry'd up the Cross in triumph; having set That over your Head and the
most tempting part (perhaps) of the whole world, as it were, under your
feet.

"And, methinks, Madam, this remark may not a little indear to you the seat
of your pious retirement; viz. That you, who have been dispossess'd of so
many noble houses and pleasant scituations, by the worlds violence and
injustice, and have had many religious receptacles (by your means
consecrated) taken from you by the Prince of this world, transferring them
to his profane uses: That your vertue yet should have made so eminent a
reprizal upon the world's possessions in your retreat out of it. And what a
comfort may it be to you to think that God has made use of you, to take
from this Prince one of the chiefest holds; and convert it, as it were,
into a Religious Citadel, furnish'd with such a Garrison as professing
irreconcileable enmitie to him and all his partie, bears away as many
conquests as it has combatants, daily singing Te Deum for their continual
victories."[414]

Henrietta, as is hinted in the above passage, was not slow to take
advantage of the retreat which she had won with so much difficulty. "Our
good Queen," wrote Sir Richard Browne in August, 1651, "spends much of her
time of late in a new monastery ... of which she is the titular
foundress."[415] The more she saw of her new friends the more she loved
them, and her affection was warmly returned. It became an understood thing
that year by year she should pass at Chaillot the seasons of the great
festivals of the Church, and her visits, which were usually for ten days or
a fortnight, sometimes extended to several months. She came to look upon
the convent as the best substitute for the home she had lost. There she
passed the happiest days of her latter years, and there, had not a sudden
death surprised her, she would have died.

Nor was her retirement without agreeable society from outside, for Chaillot
was the resort of some who were among the ornaments of the Parisian world.
There might often have been seen the Queen-Regent, whose visits at the time
of the foundation were continued to the day when, on her dying journey to
S. Germain-en-Laye, she was carried "to see this poor convent once
more,"[416] and who in that holy retreat was able at last to forget the
jealousies of bygone days, and to hold out the hand of cordial friendship
to Louise de la Fayette. Sometimes an even greater honour was bestowed on
the religious when the lad who was afterwards "le grand Monarque" appeared
at the door, to be welcomed with all the ceremony due to the God-given hope
of France. Not infrequently the bright and gifted Madame de la Fayette, who
was winning a literary reputation, to be crowned later by the publication
of _La Princesse de Clèves_, came to chat with her husband's sister, or to
lay the foundation of that intimacy with Henrietta of England which fitted
her to be the biographer of her short life. Most constant visitor of all,
Madame de Motteville brought her wit, her accomplishments, and her long
experience of Court life to enliven the dullness of the cloister. When the
death of Queen Anne released her from the faithful attendance of years she
spent a great part of her time at Chaillot, where she was the frequent
companion of the Queen of England, who beguiled the long, quiet hours by
recounting her past experiences, particularly her adventures during the
Civil War, all of which her listener carefully wrote down and finally
incorporated in the charming memoirs which were the principal occupation of
her later days, and which contain many details of Henrietta's character and
career lost but for her in the silence of time.

But perhaps the most romantic visitor who ever appeared at Chaillot was a
runaway Princess, who found there an asylum after her conversion from the
Protestant to the Catholic religion. Louise of the Palatine was a
connection of the Queen of England, for she was the daughter of Elizabeth
of Bohemia, the Winter Queen, whose beauty had turned so many men's heads
and hearts. Louise lived with her unfortunate family at The Hague, and she
solaced the weary days of an exiled Princess by the study of
accomplishments, especially of painting, for which she had real talent. The
attractions of the Church of Rome were represented to her by a priest, who
gained her ear and her confidence as an instructor in her favourite art.
She determined to abandon the religion of her family; and, as she knew that
her position in her mother's house would be intolerable, she sought refuge
in flight, and threw herself upon the protection of her aunt by marriage,
whose devotion to the Church of Rome was a matter of common knowledge.
Louise was not disappointed. Henrietta, to whom the conversion of any
Protestant was a matter of real interest, and who must have felt a certain
satisfaction in the secession to the enemy's camp of one of the children of
the Queen of Bohemia, whose Protestantism had often in the past been
unfavourably compared with her Catholicism, received the girl with motherly
kindness, and bestowed her at Chaillot under the care of Mother de la
Fayette. Louise soon expressed a desire to enter the religious life, and it
was thought that she would take the veil in the convent which sheltered
her; but Mother de la Fayette, with the good sense which distinguished her,
objected to the profession of a Princess, whose birth would necessitate her
election to a high office, to which perhaps her personal qualities would
not entitle her. So the royal lady went on to the Cistercians, who had no
such scruples, and who made her Abbess of Maubuisson, near Pontoise, where
she lived in much repute to a green old age, and famed perhaps as well as
her younger sister Sophia, whose steadfast Protestantism was rewarded by
the reversion of the crown of the Three Kingdoms, and whose descendants sit
to this day upon the throne which she missed by a few weeks.

In 1654 Mother Lhulier died. She was succeeded[417] in the office of
Superior, as might have been expected, by Mother de la Fayette, whose
election was much desired by the Queens of both England and France. These
royal ladies considerately abstained, from expressing any opinion on the
subject that the nuns' choice might be free, but their wishes must have
been well known, and they no doubt fell in with those of the religious.
Louise de la Fayette fully justified the prophecy of Mother Chantal, and if
Chaillot owed much to the force of character and strength of will of the
first Superior, it owed even more to the sagacious rule of the second, who
endeared herself to all, whether religious or visitors. The house was
already sufficiently established, but the financial condition gave great
cause for anxiety, and almost justified the ungracious forebodings of the
Archbishop of Paris, though kind friends, among whom Madame de Motteville
was one of the most generous, gave considerable gifts, and some of the
religious, such as her sister, the first professed nun of the house, were
able to bring dowries. Queen Henrietta, who had no money to give, exerted
herself to procure high-born little pupils for the convent school, whose
liberal pensions were indeed for some time the chief support of the house.
She set the example by placing her own little daughter, Princess Henrietta,
under the care of Mother de la Fayette, and, as was hoped, her presence
attracted other children of equal rank, among whom was the daughter of the
Duchess of Nemours, who was afterwards Queen of Portugal. No children could
have had a more beautiful home or a more apt instructress; for the nun, in
her long years of conventual life, had lost no whit of the graces and
accomplishments of her courtly youth or of her natural kindliness of heart.
Her charity, indeed, rose superior even to the acerbities of theological
passion. To her care was confided one of the exiled nuns of Port Royal, and
it is recorded that, in honourable contrast to the Superiors of other
religious houses charged with a like burden, she treated her unwelcome
guest with constant courtesy and kindness.

Chaillot was to Henrietta a peaceful retreat after all her sorrows, for the
world was strictly excluded, and the convent never became, like Val de
Grace, a centre of political intrigue. There, removed from the troubles of
dangerous schemes, of jarring religions, and of perpetual disappointments,
the Queen regained something of the brightness and more than the
tranquillity of her earlier years. The quiet days, passed in a round of
prayer, of conversation, and of reading, flowed on undisturbed; and as she
grew older she pleased herself by talking of the time when she should take
up her abode permanently with her dear nuns, only, she said, she feared the
damp of the river-side house a little. The kindness of the nuns, who saw in
her not only a royal foundress, but a much-tried and suffering woman, was
very great. At one time they even permitted her to join them at their
recreation; and when this was found to be undesirable, her particular
friends among the community were still ready to cheer and amuse her by
their agreeable conversation, while they in their turn were often much
diverted by her witty talk and stories of the surprising adventures which
had befallen her, and which assuredly lost nothing in the telling. She was
too clear-sighted and humorous not to appreciate that a queen was of
necessity a troublesome member of a religious household, and she set
herself to mitigate the annoyance as far as possible. She kept a very small
household, only one lady-in-waiting, two or three other attendants, and as
many girls to do the cooking, and she was careful to select only such women
as would conduct themselves with quietness and decorum. One of her chief
objects in choosing a situation on the outskirts of Paris had been to avoid
the flow of idle visitors who in the city itself were a real annoyance to
religious houses, and she refused to receive those who came on idle and
frivolous pretexts. No one, however high his rank or pressing his business,
was permitted to enter the enclosure without the leave of the Superior; and
once, when Henrietta herself was unable to walk and was carried out from
Paris in a chair, she insisted upon waiting at the gate of the convent
until permission for her bearers to enter had been obtained. On all
ordinary occasions she came down to the parlour and interviewed her
visitors through the grill, even when the matter in hand was so intimate as
that of trying on new clothes. She was equally considerate in any question
which might disturb the religious routine of the house; and this delicate
woman of over fifty, a princess by birth and a queen by marriage, whose
health had been ruined by her troubles and privations, dragged herself from
her bed at an early hour in the cold winter mornings that the community
Mass, at which she liked to assist, might not be delayed.

Perhaps the greatest pleasure of Henrietta's life at Chaillot was the long
conversations which she held with Mother de la Fayette, whose attraction
was as great for her as years before it had been for her brother. Into the
nun's sympathizing ear she poured the tale of her sorrows, her fears, and
her aspirations, and from her she received those instructions and counsels
which made her in her latter years, in the words of Madame de Motteville, a
_dévote_ without the pretensions of one. Mother de la Fayette taught her
the art of meditation, an art which must have been difficult to the Queen's
vivacious and easily distracted mind, and it was probably under her advice,
as well as that of her confessor, that she refused to interest herself in
the various theories of grace which the controversies of Port Royal were
making a fashionable subject of conversation, and confined her spiritual
reading to a perusal and reperusal of a book which has brought consolation
to thousands of weary spirits, the _De Imitatione Christi_. Her confidence
in Mother de la Fayette, which probably was due in some measure to the
isolation and independence which her position as a nun gave her, was very
great. It extended even to her worldly affairs, which she would hardly have
discussed with an ordinary friend. It was still more marked with regard to
those inner matters of the spirit in which heart speaks to heart. It was to
this chosen friend that Henrietta made the touching confession, which
Bossuet, through Madame de Motteville, was able to proclaim to the world
after her death, that every day on her knees she thanked God that He had
made her two things, a Christian and an unhappy Queen (_une reine
malheureuse_). But the pleasure of this friendship was not to be
Henrietta's to the end. In 1664 the Queen was in England. She kept up a
constant communication with the nuns at Chaillot, and she was much
gratified to receive a letter telling her of the return of Mother de la
Fayette to the convent, from which she had been absent on a reforming
mission to another religious house, and of her re-election as Superior.
Very shortly another letter followed telling of the nun's sudden and
serious illness, and hardly had the Queen grasped this intelligence when
the news came that Louise de la Fayette was dead. Though she had spent
twenty-seven years in religion she was even now only forty-six years old,
and the community mourned her as one who had been taken away in the midst
of her age. It is not likely that she ever regretted her early decision,
for the position of a highly born nun in those days, particularly if she
resided in the capital, was dignified and important, and compared
favourably with that of the worldly woman in all but variety and
excitement. A convent parlour might be, and often was, the scene of
conversations as interesting and influential as any held in a _salon_ or
boudoir; and if Louise de la Fayette did not wield a distinctly political
influence, it was rather from choice than from inability. Her early and
tragic experience had taught her a real contempt for the fleeting glitter
of Court life, and she never lost the spirit which, in her early convent
days, led her, when one of her former friends reproached her for the change
which had come over her, and hinted that she was mad, to reply gently: "No,
I think I have left you the madness in leaving you the world."

She had no truer mourner than the Queen of England, who hastened to
associate herself with the sorrowing community. "One day you tell me," she
wrote, "of the serious condition of Mother de la Fayette, and the next you
announce to me her death, which grieves me deeply. It is a loss for the
whole Order, and particularly for our house. I cannot express to you the
grief which I feel; it is too great. I pray you to tell all our daughters
that I sympathize with their sorrow, and to assure them that they will
always find me ready to make proof of the friendship which I have for them,
and which I had for the Mother they are mourning."[418]

The picture which is presented of Henrietta through the medium of the
Chaillot Papers, though in no sense false, is necessarily one-sided. All
persons are influenced by the surroundings in which they find themselves,
and if the Queen of England appeared to the nuns as a woman of almost
saintly piety, whose every thought was given to heaven, and whose sorrows
had completely detached her from the world, it is because thus she really
was in their gentle society within the charmed walls of their convent. They
did not see her in the outside world, where thorny problems again beset
her, and where her old faults of temper and judgment tended to reappear.
She had ever been not only a woman of strong religious and moral principle,
but one whose qualities of heart and head had gained her more affection
than often falls to the lot of a royal lady, and the effect of Chaillot was
to emphasize and develop every virtue and charm she possessed, and to throw
completely into the background all that was harsh and discordant and
unlovely. Among the many portraits which remain to show her "in her habit
as she lived" is one which represents her as the recluse of Chaillot, and
which brings strong corroboration to the loving pen-and-ink sketches of the
good nuns. A woman, still comely and showing the remains of great beauty,
looks out upon us from the canvas; the heavy mourning dress corresponds
with the deep melancholy of the face, and if there are no tears in the
eyes, it is only because the painter has caught that saddest of all
moments, when

  "The eyes are weary and give o'er,
  But still the soul weeps as before."[419]

Thus she must often have appeared as she sat in her quiet room at Chaillot,
or knelt in the convent chapel; and if in later years she was able to take
up life again with something of her old courage and cheerfulness, it was
because her wounded spirit had met healing and peace in this beloved home,
which had been founded, as the archives of the Order recorded, for the
consolation of a suffering woman, and which, after sheltering the sorrows
of one exiled Queen of England, was to extend a like welcome to another
hardly less unfortunate, Mary Beatrice d'Este, the wife of Henrietta's
second son, James II.[420]

[Footnote 402: "Mon inclination est de me retirir dans les Carmelites ...
car après ma perte je ne puis avoir un moment de aucune joye."--_Lettres de
Henriette Marie à sa soeur Christine_, p. 71.]

[Footnote 403: Jeanne Chantal.]

[Footnote 404: _A New Description of Paris_ (1887), p. 121. The chapel is
now a church of the _église réformée_.]

[Footnote 405: Queen Anne of Austria was very fond of this convent.
Mazarin, in the early days of his power, believed that the nuns tried to
influence her against him.]

[Footnote 406: Mme de Motteville: _Mémoires_ (1783), I, 72.]

[Footnote 407: This account is taken from that written by Caussin, an old
copy of which is preserved in the Bibliothèque S. Geneviève, in Paris.
Caussin's manuscript was only seen by Mother de la Fayette shortly before
her death.]

[Footnote 408: Her profession took place in July, 1637.]

[Footnote 409: Louise Eugénie de la Fontaine. During the second war of the
Fronde this lady received into the convent a number of religious (among
them the Chaillot nuns) who were afraid to remain outside Paris. "Il
sembloit que cette maison étoit un petit Paradis Terrestre ou une arche qui
vaguoit en assurance dans un repos admirable pendant que tout étoit dans
une confusion épouvantable et qu'on entendoit de tous cotez les canons et
les mosquets qui se tiroient à la batail de la porte S. Antoine."--_Vie de
la Ven. Mère Louise Eugénie de la Fontaine._]

[Footnote 410: Evelyn: _Diary_. December 5th, 1643.]

[Footnote 411: MS. 2436, Bibliothèque Mazarine, Paris. From this history
many of the details of this chapter are taken.]

[Footnote 412: He was an old friend and disciple of Bérulle.]

[Footnote 413: She was apparently a sister of Sir William Hamilton, the
Queen's late agent in Rome.]

[Footnote 414: _Miscellanea Spiritualia_, Pt. II (1653).]

[Footnote 415: _Diary and Correspondence of John Evelyn_ (1859), Vol. IV,
p. 352.]

[Footnote 416: Madame de Motteville: _Mémoires_, VI, p. 212 (1783).]

[Footnote 417: The Superiors of the Order of the Visitation are chosen for
three years. Mother de la Fayette held office three times, from 1654-7,
from 1657-60, and from 1663 until her death in the following year.]

[Footnote 418: C[arlo] C[otolendi]: _Vie de la très haute et très puissante
Princesse Henriette Marie de France Reyne de la Grande Bretagne_, p. 311.]

[Footnote 419: D. G. Rossetti.]

[Footnote 420: Of Chaillot literally not one stone remains upon another.
The convent was destroyed in the Revolution, and its site is occupied by
the Trocadero.]



CHAPTER XII

THE END

  La mort a des rigueurs à nulle autre pareilles;
      Ou a beau la prier,
  La cruelle qu'elle est, se bouche les oreilles,
      Et nous laisse crier.

  Le pauvre en sa cabine, où le chaume le couvre,
      Est sujet à ses lois;
  Et la garde qui veille aux barrières du Louvre,
      N'en défend point nos rois.

                                FRANÇOIS DE MALHERBE


In the end the Restoration came as a joyful surprise to Queen Henrietta and
her sons. After all the struggles, after all the intrigues, after all the
schemes, Charles Stuart returned to the throne of his father by the free
choice of a people afraid of a military despotism, weary of the disorders
which had followed the death of Cromwell, and remembering that, after all,
the exiled King had had little or no complicity in the deeds which brought
his father to the scaffold. England was tired of Puritanism, and was
preparing with all eagerness to welcome the Merry Monarch.

France, which had shown herself decidedly tepid in helping the King of
England in his adversities, and had, even at the nod of the usurper, driven
him beyond her borders, was quite ready to rejoice at his good luck. Even
Mazarin offered the most gratifying sympathy, while Queen Anne and the
common people manifested a more real gladness. The English colony in Paris
was naturally almost beside itself with joy and triumph, which burst forth
in noisy rejoicings, wherein music, drinking, and fireworks played about
equal parts.

As for Henrietta, her joy was too deep for words. The small but pretty
house at Colombes, where she now spent much of her time, was the scene of
suitable festivity, but she was probably glad when she could retire to
Chaillot to receive the sympathy of Mother de la Fayette, and to assist at
a solemn Te Deum of thanksgiving, which was sung in the chapel of the
convent. When the news came that her son, on his landing in England, had
almost been torn to pieces in the delight of his subjects, her joy was
complete. "At last," she wrote in a happy letter to her sister Christine,
"at last the good God has looked upon us in His mercy, and has worked, so
to speak, a miracle in this re-establishment, having in an instant changed
the hearts of a people which has passed from the greatest hatred to
expressions of the greatest possible kindness and submission, marked,
moreover, by expressions of unparalleled joy."[421] The King, her son, she
added, would, she believed, be more powerful than any of his predecessors,
a forecast in which she showed her usual lack of political penetration, for
the English people, even in the delirium of loyalty of the Restoration, did
not throw away the fruits of the long struggle.

Charles wrote most kindly to his mother, begging her to come to England to
share his triumph, and she confessed, in a letter to her sister Christine,
that she should like before she died to see her family reunited after their
long wanderings, and "vagabonds no more." But she delayed several months,
during the course of which her nephew, Louis XIV, whom she had once hoped
to see her son-in-law, married the bride of his mother's choosing, the
Infanta of Spain. The Queen of England, in company with her sister of
France, repaired to the house of Madame de Beauvais,[422] whence, from a
balcony overlooking the Rue S. Antoine, the royal ladies witnessed the
entry into Paris of the King of France and his wife, Louis riding on
horseback, and the bride sitting in a car drawn by six splendid horses.
Only a few weeks after this day of rejoicing Henrietta's joy was turned to
grief, and even her pleasure in her son's restoration was dashed by the sad
news of the death of her youngest son Henry, who had grown into a tall,
fine young man, whose gallant bearing was much admired when he rode into
London at the left hand of his brother the King, on the happy 29th of May.
The poor lad was smitten by the scourge of smallpox, and in a few days he
was laid in the grave.

It was not until October that the Queen turned her steps towards England,
accompanied by her youngest daughter, who was now a girl of sixteen, the
beautiful

  "Princesse blanche comme albâtre,"[423]

who was soon to be the bride of her cousin Philip, the brother of Louis
XIV. In spite of the happy occasion, it was sad to Henrietta to retrace the
wedding journey of her youth, and to have to take part in festivities which
recalled those of that long-passed time. On this occasion she set sail from
Calais, but it was again at Dover that she set foot upon the soil of her
adopted country, which she had not seen for sixteen years, and which her
daughter had left as a child too young for memory.

[Illustration: THE RUE ST. ANTOINE, PARIS (SHOWING THE CHAPEL OF THE

VISITANDINES)

FROM AN ENGRAVING BY IVAN MERLEN]

Nor were the sad associations of the past the Queen's only cause for
sorrow. Her grief was still fresh for her dead son, and for her two living
ones her mind was full of anxiety. "I am going to England to marry one and
to unmarry the other," she had said on leaving Paris. She was revolving
schemes in her head for a marriage between the King and a niece of Cardinal
Mazarin, whose large dowry, it was thought, would be useful in paying off
the army of Cromwell and in settling the discontent which surely must be
still lurking in the newly converted country. But more painful thoughts
were given to her second son. This young man, whose exploits, together with
those of his younger brother, at the battle of the Dunes, had won the
admiration of the French against whom they were fighting, and whose fame
was so great that his praises were sung in the coffee-houses of distant
Constantinople, had so far forgotten his high lineage as to contract an
alliance with a young woman of low rank, of no compensating beauty and of
somewhat doubtful character. It was small consolation to Henrietta that the
lady she was called upon to welcome as Duchess of York was the daughter of
Sir Edward Hyde. At first she sternly refused to recognize the marriage,
and it was only the entreaties of her two most intimate friends and
counsellors, Lord Jermyn and the Abbé Montagu, that induced her to be
reconciled to her son and to receive his wife. Perhaps she was also
influenced by the knowledge that her eldest son, who at this time was much
under the power of Hyde, wished her to show mercy. Still, it was with an
aching heart that she saw her gallant young son mated with a woman in every
way inferior to him; and her chagrin would not have been decreased could
she have looked into the future and seen the two daughters of Anne Hyde
sitting, in succession, upon the throne from which they had thrust their
father.

Queen Henrietta Maria was received with all kindness in England, which she
found in such a fever of loyalty as to make it quite needless to think of
the dowry of Mazarin's niece. The ever-fickle populace welcomed her with
joy which made it difficult to believe that she had even been unpopular.
Her dowry was restored to her, and her son rewarded his mother's faithful
servants. Jermyn, whose advocacy of the Duchess of York had not perhaps
been quite disinterested, received the title of Earl of St. Albans; and
Montagu no doubt might also have obtained the recompense of his fidelity
had he not by now regarded France and the Church as a truer _patria_ than
his own country. As Grand Almoner to the Queen he presided over her
ecclesiastical establishment, which was again settled at Somerset House,
whither the Capuchin Fathers had returned to carry on a vigorous religious
campaign, in which their superior, Father Cyprien,[424] who preached
sermons "to touch the heart of demons," took an active part. The palace had
been much knocked about during the war, and it was one of Henrietta's
pleasures to restore it to its former beauty, an achievement which her old
admirer, Sir William Waller, celebrated in smooth, polished verses of the
type which was rapidly ousting the literary fashions of an earlier day. The
Queen showed a surprising memory for the persons and things of the past,
and delighted her son's courtiers by the graceful tact with which she
recalled their circumstances and asked after their wives and families. But
she was not very happy. Probably she felt the loss of her former political
influence. Certainly she felt all the bitterness of returning a lonely and
widowed old woman to the scenes of her happy married life. Sometimes, when
all was bright around her, she would be found in some retired corner,
where, with eyes full of tears, she was dwelling in thought upon the happy
days of the past, and thinking of him to whom her will had been law.

Thus by December, 1660, she had made up her mind to return to France; and
after a parting saddened by the recent death of her eldest daughter, the
Princess of Orange, who died of smallpox in London, she set out. Her
journey was delayed by the serious illness of Princess Henrietta at
Portsmouth, so that she did not reach Paris until the February of the next
year. She was welcomed with much affection by her many friends, but perhaps
the marriage of her daughter Henrietta, the daily companion of fifteen
years, which took place with great éclat at the Palais Royal, made her life
too lonely; for after the birth of the young wife's first child, a little
girl to whom she was godmother, she determined to set out again for
England, and report had it that there she meant to live and die. Her eldest
son had just married a princess of Portugal, whose acquaintance she was
anxious to make, and royal tact led her to add that she also wished to see
the little daughter who had recently been born to the Duke and Duchess of
York.

There was no lack of heartiness in the welcome of her sons. Both Charles
and James put to sea to meet her; but, owing to stormy weather, their boat
was driven back, and the Queen's first welcome was the joyous salvos of
Dover which answered the thunder of the guns of Calais.

None but the most formal accounts remain to tell of Henrietta's impressions
of her daughter-in-law, Catherine of Braganza. She can hardly have been
pleased with the insipid girl whose bigoted piety and dull precision of
character were not calculated to win the heart of an intellectual roué such
as Charles II, who in women preferred a sparkling wit even to beauty. His
mother, whose happy married life had made her shudder at the very name of
illicit love, was no doubt judiciously blind where her sons were concerned;
but she must have felt for this poor child whose chances of happiness were
from the beginning very small. The two queens found a common interest in
religion. Catherine was indeed _dévote_ as Henrietta had never been; but
the elder woman had throughout her life given sufficient proof of zeal, and
she had recently written a letter to the Pope, informing him that the chief
reason of her return to England was her desire to advance the Catholic
religion in that land. The Court of Rome was getting weary of the
ungrateful island on which "missioners, seminaires, regulars, seculars,
archpriests, interposition of Princes, and what not,"[425] had all been
thrown away. But Henrietta, true to her sanguine nature, still hoped to be
the saviour of the English Catholics. Her chapel at Somerset House was once
more the resort of the faithful, where hundreds abjured the heresy of their
birth, some of which conversions were so amazing as to merit a place in the
memoirs of Father Cyprien. Above all, the Queen knew that her eldest son,
whose private opinions varied between the tenets of Hobbes and those of the
Church of Rome, would have liked to be tolerant. What she failed to
appreciate was that his wandering exiled life had taught him to sacrifice
any private fancy or liking rather than go on his travels again.

Somerset House was not only a religious centre. Wherever Henrietta was
there were laughter, wit, and cheerfulness. Even in the darkest days of the
past she would dry her tears to laugh at anything which struck her as
droll, and now, in her old age, though sorrow and self-discipline had
softened the sharpness of her tongue, her conversation had the charm of
that of a witty woman who had mixed with famous people, and who had borne a
principal part in the events of the age which was just passing away. Life
had been to her what books are to more studious people; for, like the
father whose wit she had inherited, she did not care for reading, and this,
in her later life, she frankly regretted. She was now a "little, plain old
woman,"[426] always quietly dressed, and worn out by trouble and
ill-health; but the charm which was her cradle gift had not left her, and
her Court proved much more attractive than that of her daughter-in-law, to
whom nature had been less bountiful, and whose prim youth was no match for
the sprightly age of the daughter of Henry IV.

But the rivalry was not to be a long one. It seems that the air of England
had not agreed with Henrietta, even when she was young and happy; and now
her health daily became worse, until at last her physicians told her
plainly that if she remained in England she would die. Perhaps she was not
altogether sorry for this decision. She loved her sunny native land, and
her heart yearned for her youngest and dearest child and for her nuns at
Chaillot. Moreover, the troubles of her previous visit had not passed away.
She bade a loving farewell to the two sons whose faces she knew she would
never see again, and then made for the last time the familiar journey to
Paris, where she was received with the customary kindness of the French
royal family.

       *       *       *       *       *

The last years of Henrietta Maria's life were calm and peaceful, except for
her ill-health. "I have never had a day free from pain for twenty years,"
she said shortly before her death to her friends at Chaillot. She had
little to trouble her beyond the gentle sorrow of seeing those with whom
she had been associated pass, one by one, to the silence of the grave. Her
brother, the Duke of Orleans, ended his restless life in the year of the
Restoration, leaving his title to his nephew, Henrietta's son-in-law.
Cardinal Mazarin passed away in 1661, avaricious to the last, and counting
with dying fingers the treasures to which his heart still clung. Four years
later Queen Anne of Austria followed him, after an illness the infinitely
pathetic record of which is to be found in the pages of Madame de
Motteville. She was a great loss to her sister-in-law, the more so as
Henrietta's faithful friend, the Abbé Montagu, was so high in her favour
that it was feared he would succeed to the influence and position of
Mazarin, and thus France be under a foreigner once more. The tie between
these two was of no ordinary strength. Not only had Montagu been a friend
and companion of the unforgotten Buckingham, but Anne never ceased to
remember the service which he had rendered to her in the past. When he
returned to France, after his long imprisonment, sobered by trouble, and so
far from desiring the ecclesiastical honours on which his heart had once
been set that he turned from them when offered, he became in some measure
her spiritual adviser, a rôle for which he was well suited, as he knew
probably better than any one else the secrets of the past. From his lips,
at her own request, the dying Queen received the solemn intimation of the
approach of death, and almost her last conscious words were addressed to
him. "M. de Montagu knows how much I have to thank God for," she said,
fixing her eyes on the Abbé as he knelt weeping beside her, words which
both Madame de Motteville, who was present, and Montagu himself interpreted
as bearing witness to Anne's innocence in the days when she compromised her
reputation by vanity and coquetting.[427]

Henrietta's health, which had never recovered from the strain of the Civil
War and the terrible experiences of her last confinement, became worse and
worse; so that in December, 1668, she wrote to her son Charles that her
remaining days would not be many. She suffered much from sleeplessness and
fainting fits, and even the waters of Bourbon, which she had long been
accustomed to drink every year, afforded her little relief. The thought of
death had ever been to her, as to her accomplished friend Madame de
Motteville, one of terror. She did not like even to speak of it. "It is
better," she was wont to say, "to give one's attention to living well, and
to hope for God's mercy in the last hour." But now that death was drawing
near it lost something of its terror, and she said quite openly that she
was going to Chaillot to die. "I shall think no more of doctors or
medicine," she added, "but only of my soul." In this spirit she went out to
her house at Colombes to spend there the golden days of a French autumn,
until the feast of All Saints should call her to her convent. "The
Queen-Mother is extreme ill, and seems to apprehend herself
extremely,"[428] wrote Ralph Montagu, the English ambassador in Paris, on
September 7th, 1669.

A few days later the end came. To the Queen's sleeplessness was added an
aversion from all food, and at the request of the King of France, who was
much attached to his aunt, a consultation of doctors was held, among whom
the principal place was taken by Vallot, a man of great experience, who was
first physician to the Crown of France, but who, nevertheless, was believed
by some to have been negligent in his care of Queen Anne. He, thinking that
Henrietta's great weakness came from her distressing insomnia, advised that
she should take a grain of some sedative at night. The Queen, who had
explained her symptoms with great clearness, objected the opinion of Sir
Theodore Mayerne that such remedies were dangerous to her constitution,
adding, laughing, that an old gipsy woman in England had once told her that
she would never die except of a grain. Vallot listened respectfully, but he
was unconvinced, so that his patient, feeling her reluctance to be foolish,
agreed to follow his advice. The day wore on, and after a quiet evening
with her ladies, Henrietta retired to bed as usual; but she did not feel
very well, and it was suggested that she should not take the opiate.
However, she could not sleep, and when her physician was called to her
bedside she asked with some eagerness for the drug. He administered it in
an egg, after which the Queen lay down again, to fall into a sleep which
became deeper and deeper, until it passed into the last sleep of
death.[429]

       *       *       *       *       *

With daybreak all was confusion at Colombes. Messengers hurried off to
Paris to acquaint the King of France with the news of his aunt's death, and
to S. Cloud to break the sad tidings to the Duchess of Orleans, who would
be her mother's truest mourner. By some strange oversight or malice the
English ambassador was left to hear the intelligence by chance. Ralph
Montagu, who had a very poor opinion of the Earl of St. Albans, whose
position as Lord Chamberlain to the late Queen gave him considerable power,
believed that that nobleman had purposely kept him in ignorance, so that
there should not be "left a silver spoon in the house."[430] In the
interests of the King of England he hurried off to the King of France, who,
in spite of the protests of the Earl, caused seals to be placed upon his
aunt's property until it could be properly disposed of.

There was great mourning for Henrietta in France, not only because she was
personally beloved, but because the King and the people saw in her not so
much the widow of the King of England as the last surviving child of the
much-loved Henry the Great. High and low vied with each other in their
desire to do her honour, and Louis XIV expressed his wish that she should
lie by her father in the royal Abbey of S. Denys, where he ordered that a
splendid funeral service, following the precedent of that of his mother,
should be celebrated at his expense. He immediately dispatched a _lettre de
cachet_[431] to the Prior and monks of the house, ordering them to receive
with all honour the body of the Queen of England.

Meanwhile at Colombes on a bed of state lay the corpse.[432] But that same
evening, following the custom of the times, the heart was taken out,
enclosed in a silver casket, and carried to its last resting-place at
Chaillot. A sorrowful company escorted the precious relic, which was met at
the door of the convent by the religious, each of whom held in her hand a
lighted taper. Then in a set little speech the Abbé Montagu, as Grand
Almoner to the late Queen, delivered it over to the Superior, commending it
to the pious care of the community.

Two days after this mournful little ceremony the body was carried through
the Porte S. Denys, along the road which Henrietta had traversed as a
bride, to the royal abbey, where it was to rest. There, watched by faithful
guardians, it lay in a chapel behind the choir for more than a month, until
the 20th of November, when the funeral service was celebrated. The
obsequies were a magnificent affair, comparable with the splendours of the
long-ago wedding. In the great church hung with black, on a magnificent
mausoleum supported by eight marble pillars and blazing with a quantity of
lighted tapers, Henrietta, who, living, had known what it was to lack the
necessaries of life, lay as a King's daughter in her death, and that the
contrast might be the more complete, her body, which had long laid aside
the trappings of royalty, was covered by a gorgeous pall "of gold brocade
covered by silver brocade and edged with ermine." By the will of the King
representatives of the sovereign bodies were present, while the mourners
included princes and princesses and even one of higher rank, for Casimir,
the ex-King of Poland, who had exchanged his crown for a monk's frock, had
journeyed to do honour to the Queen of England from the great Abbey of S.
Germain des Prés, where he was spending a peaceful old age, and where his
tomb may be seen to this day. The attendance of clergy indeed was not
large, but that was only because orders had been issued that the sovereign
bodies should be saluted before the prelates, an insult which the pride of
the Church could not stomach.

After a new and delightful rendering by the choir of the _Dies Iræ_, the
Bishop of Amiens ascended the pulpit. Francis Faure was probably selected
for this office partly because he had been a servant of the dead Queen in
her early married life, and partly because she had taken pleasure in
hearing him deliver the panegyric of S. Francis de Sales in the chapel of
the convent of Chaillot on the occasion of the saint's canonization. It
seems, however, that this "_cordelier mitré_", as Gui Patin calls him, was
not very popular with Parisian audiences, for the discourse which he
delivered at the funeral of Queen Anne was severely criticized, and his
sermon on the Queen of England had no better reception. Nevertheless, it
reads as the work of an honest and affectionate man earnestly striving, not
always indeed with success, to avoid that flattery of the great of which
the times were so tolerant, but which is peculiarly vain in connection with
death, the great leveller. His text was, "Watch and pray"; and he dwelt
with some sternness upon the awful suddenness of the Queen's end, of which
the Chaillot nuns said sweetly that it was the mercy of God to save her
from the apprehension of the death which she feared so much. The
discourse[433] was long, and it was nearly four o'clock in the afternoon
before the body of Henrietta Maria was lowered into the royal vault, to lie
beside that of her father.

But the pious care of Louis did not end at S. Denys. Nearly a week later
(November 25th) another service was celebrated in Paris itself, at the
Cathedral of Notre-Dame, as an additional mark of the King's respect for
his aunt. The Duke and Duchess of Orleans were again the chief mourners,
while this time the preacher was Father Senault, Superior of that
Congregation of the Oratory from which the Queen, ever since her marriage,
had chosen her confessors.[434] He was a preacher of repute, as well as a
writer of distinction, and his discourse on this occasion met with the
"marvellous success which attends all his actions."[435]

But before this, before even the service at S. Denys, the most famous of
Henrietta Maria's funeral sermons had been preached. The filial piety of
the Duchess of Orleans could not permit that her cousin the King of France
should be the only person to do honour to her mother's memory. Her thoughts
naturally turned to the convent at Chaillot, which her mother had loved so
dearly, and where so much of her own youth had been spent. There the Queen
had already been mourned by the good nuns; there Masses were offered for
her soul. It was but fitting that there also should be celebrated the
solemn service offered by her daughter's devotion.

On November 12th the chapel of the convent, which the care of the religious
had caused to be hung with mourning, was crowded by those who had come at
the invitation of the Duchess of Orleans to do honour to her mother's
memory. These were no royal obsequies due to Henrietta's quality as a
daughter of France, but an offering of domestic love, and, as was
befitting, the celebrant of the Mass was the late Queen's faithful,
lifelong friend, Walter Montagu. But for the preacher was found one who has
caused this simple service to be remembered while S. Denys and Notre-Dame
are forgotten. The Abbé Bossuet was already Bishop-elect of Condom, but
when he stood in the pulpit of Chaillot he still wore the dress of a simple
priest. The discourse was pronounced "with much applause of the
audience,"[436] wrote dryly the official chronicler of these events. It
will be remembered as long as the French tongue. To one heart it spoke with
something more than the charms of oratory, for from this day Henrietta of
Orleans dated her friendship with the good Bishop. She did not know that in
less than a year the same eloquent voice would be raised over her own dead
body, and that her young life would have become, like her mother's, nothing
but a text for a sermon.[437]

       *       *       *       *       *

There was some difficulty about the Queen's property, as she died
intestate. By the law of England everything she died possessed of passed to
her eldest son; by the law of France her property would be equally divided
among her children or their representatives. The property was not large,
and Ralph Montagu believed that when the debts were paid there would be
little left "but her two houses at Colombes, which would sell for ten or
twelve thousand pistols, and were always, if she had made a will, intended
to be given Madame." The person most inclined to dispute the claim of the
King of England was the Duke of Orleans, who, perhaps knowing his
mother-in-law's intentions, proposed that his wife should take the property
in France as her share, leaving to her two brothers their mother's
jointure, which had been granted for two further years. But another
claimant appeared in the person of Henrietta's grandson, the Prince of
Orange, who said that if Monsieur took a share he should advance a claim,
otherwise he would submit to the pleasure of the King of England. Madame
finally persuaded her husband to desist, which was esteemed a great service
to her brother, as by the terms of the late Queen's marriage contract it
would have been very difficult to parry his claims. Thus the whole of
Henrietta's slender fortune fell to her son Charles II of England. But
since he had always had a kindness for the nuns of Chaillot, he gave to
them the furniture of his mother's apartments there. Some of it was too
fine for them, and this portion they sold for the benefit of the house.
They had no use for Flanders tapestry, for state beds or arm-chairs; but
they kept, among other things, two feather beds, all the linen and pottery,
and three very beautiful pictures. The proceeds of the sale enabled the
nuns to build ten new cells, as well as to lay aside a sum of money for the
expenses of the yearly commemoration of their royal foundress.[438]

       *       *       *       *       *

Of those who mourned for Henrietta Maria it remains to say a few words. The
future history of her two sons and of her nephew, Louis XIV, is too well
known to need remark, except that it may be mentioned that James, in the
tardy repentance of exile, found much comfort and edification among the
nuns of Chaillot. The tragic fate of her daughter has already been referred
to. Henrietta of Orleans, in the bloom of a beauty which recalled that of
her mother, died at S. Cloud in the autumn of 1670, not without suspicion
of poison. The Earl of St. Albans[439] returned to London, where he spent a
drinking and card-playing old age, of which the most notable achievement
was the foundation of St. James's Square, by which means he may almost
claim the title of founder of modern West London, where Jermyn Street yet
preserves his name. Walter Montagu, his friend of many years, had a very
different fate. After the death of his three patronesses, the Queen of
France, the Queen of England, and the Duchess of Orleans, he was made to
resign the Abbey of S. Martin's, Pontoise. He returned to Paris and entered
the Hospital of the Incurables in the Rue de Sève.[440] "My lord," said an
English priest[441] of remarkable piety, who was waiting there for death,
as he saw the Abbé enter, "you are come to teach me how to die." "No, Mr.
Clifford," replied Montagu, "I have come to learn from you how to live."

In this calm retreat his last years flowed quietly away. He "only occupied
himself with the eternal years and with the practice of all the
vertues,"[442] said the chronicler of S. Martin's; but incidentally he was
able to render many services to the English colony in Paris, though his
cousin Ralph complained that he had grown "very ignorant and out of
fashion."[443] He died peacefully at the Incurables in February, 1677, and
his body was carried to S. Martin's, at Pontoise, of which he had been a
princely benefactor, to be buried in the chapel[444] of S. Walter, the
first Abbot of the house and his patron saint, which he had beautified at
great expense. Mother Jeanne, who still ruled over the Carmelites of
Pontoise, caused a Mass to be sung for his soul, and equal honour was paid
to his memory by the English Benedictine nuns of the same town. In Paris
another old friend was doubtless thinking of him, for in a retirement
almost monastical Madame de Chevreuse yet lived, one of the last of those
who had gathered at the brilliant Court of Charles I and Henrietta Maria.

       *       *       *       *       *

Thus Henrietta Maria, Queen of England,

  "Left love and life and slept in endless rest."[445]

As she was unfortunate in life, so she has been unfortunate in death; for a
people whose historical judgments were stereotyped by the revolution of
1688 has remembered her failings and forgotten her charms. It is only
within recent years that the justice of history, working on the materials
which are slowly unfolding the secrets of time, has been able to redress
the balance and to reveal the personality of the woman who, amid all her
misfortunes and all her faults, never lacked while living the devotion of
love and friendship.

[Footnote 421: _Lettres de Henriette Marie à sa soeur Christine_, p. 121.]

[Footnote 422: This fine old house is still standing in the Rue François
Mirron.]

[Footnote 423: Loret: _La Muse Historique_, t. 3, p. 252.]

[Footnote 424: This friar seems to have been more highly esteemed than, to
judge by his memoirs, he quite deserved. _La Muse Historique_ has a long
panegyric of him beginning--

  Ce père a beaucoup de science
  De vertue d'esprit d'eloquence
  Faizans quelque fois des Sermons
  A pouvoir toucher des Demons.--T. IV, p. 116.]

[Footnote 425: Archives of See of Westminster.]

[Footnote 426: Pepys: _Diary_, November 22nd, 1660.]

[Footnote 427: Mme de Motteville: _Mémoires_ (1783), VI, pp. 307, 308.]

[Footnote 428: Hist. MSS. Com. MSS. of Duke of Buccleuch at Montagu House.
Vol. I, p. 438.]

[Footnote 429: There are several accounts of Henrietta's death differing
considerably in detail, especially as to the time when the opiate was
given. Vallot was much blamed for the advice he had given.]

[Footnote 430: Hist. MSS. Com. MSS. of Duke of Buccleuch at Montagu House.
Vol. I, p. 440.]

[Footnote 431: "A nos chers et bien aimez le grand Prieur et Religieux de
l'Abbaye Royalle de S. Denis en France" (September 12th, 1669).--Arch.
Nat., K. 119, No. 7.]

[Footnote 432: The official account of the Queen's death and of the three
funeral services is contained in MS. Cinqants de Colbert, p. 142.]

[Footnote 433: "Oraison funèbre de Henriette Marie de France Reyne de la
Grande Bretagne prononcée dans l'Eglise de Saint Denys en France par
Monseigneur l'Evesque d'Amiens" (1670).]

[Footnote 434: Her confessor at the time of her death was Father Lambert,
who succeeded Father Viette.]

[Footnote 435: MS. Cinq cents de Colbert, p. 142.]

[Footnote 436: Cinq cents de Colbert, p. 142.]

[Footnote 437: On the first day of the year 1670 Walter Montagu "Voulant
temoyner sa reconnaissance envers la Reine d'Angleterre ... indiqua dans
son église [S. Martin's, Pontoise] un service solemnel par le repos de son
âme."--Histoire de l'Abbaye de S. Martin de Pontoise, 1769. Bibliothèque
Mazarine, MS. 3368.]

[Footnote 438: Arch. Nat., K. 1303, No. 6. The portion sold realized
£4143.]

[Footnote 439: It is necessary to say a few words as to the alleged
marriage between Henrietta Maria and Jermyn. It was believed by some
contemporaries (e.g. Pepys and Reresby) that they were married, but it is
very unlikely that this was the case. In a note to Smeaton's reprint (1820)
to _The Life and Death of that matchless mirror of Magnanimity and Heroick
Vertue Henrietta Maria de Bourbon_, it is asserted that a document was in
existence in which Jermyn settled property on Henrietta Maria at the time
of his marriage with her. This statement is absolutely unsupported, and
even if the document ever existed it may have been a forgery. Henrietta as
a Catholic could not have married Jermyn, a Protestant, without a
dispensation from the Pope, which it would have been very difficult to
obtain without the transaction becoming known. No trace of a dispensation
has ever been found. The Queen's closest friends, Mme de Motteville and the
Chaillot nuns, give no hint of such marriage, of which, had it existed,
they must have been aware.]

[Footnote 440: Now the Hôpital Laënnec in the Rue de Sèvres.]

[Footnote 441: William Clifford, whom Henrietta Maria recommended to the
Pope in 1656 as a suitable bishop for England. P.R.O. Roman Transcripts.]

[Footnote 442: Bib. Mazarin, MS. 3368.]

[Footnote 443: Hist. MSS. Com. MSS. of Duke of Buccleuch at Montagu House.
Vol. I, p. 423.]

[Footnote 444: It is usually said that he was buried at the Incurables, but
both the contemporary Gazette and Abbess Neville's Annals (of the English
Benedictines at Pontoise) say that he was buried at S. Martin's, and the
latter authority, which gives many details of his later life, adds that the
interment took place in the chapel of S. Walter, and there is no doubt that
their statement is correct. How the mistake arose is seen from a document
preserved in the Archives de l'Assistance Publique, fonds des Incurables,
carton 22, which speaks of a monument "posée, sur les entrailles de M. de
Montagu en la nef de l'èglise dud" hospital [des Incurables].]

[Footnote 445: William Browne.]



APPENDIX

I

ARCHIVES OF THE SEE OF WESTMINSTER

_The answer given by the Commissioners of the Counsell to the French
Embassadour Mareshall Bassompiere_


The French were sent away as delinquents, having by their ill-carriage
troubled the affaires of the kingdome, the domesticall government of his
Ma:ties house, and the sacred union betwixt his Ma:tie and the Queene. The
French Bishop and Blainvill endeavoured to make factione betwyeen the
subiectes and the King stirring up men of ill affections in the Parliament
against that which was for the service of the King and the tranquillity of
the State. Some French officers suffered others to take houses in their
names, where priestes might retire and there they brought up young weemen
and children to be sent to the Spanish seminaries. They made the Queene's
house a Rande-vous for Jesuits and fugitives. They subtly discovered what
passed in privat betweene the K. and the Queene. They obliged her to take
their opinion and allowance upon everything wh. the K. propounded and
required of her. They endeavoured to frame a repugnance in the Queene to
all wh. the King desired and ordained and they professed to foment discord
betweene their Ma:ties as a thing importing the good of the Churche. They
endeavoured to imprint in our Queene contempt of our nation, customes, and
language. They had wrought the Qu.'s person, as it were to a kinde of rule
of monasticall obedience, so farr as to make her doe things base and
servil. They led her a foote a long waye to make her goe in devotion to the
place where they are wont to execute infamous malefactours; which acte did
turne not only to the shame of the Queene, but to the infamie of the K's
predecessours for having put innocent persons to death, whom these fellows
count martyrs, whereas not one was executed for Religion, but for crime of
treason in the highest degree....


II

P.R.O. ROMAN TRANSCRIPTS

(_To Cardinal Barberini_)

Le grand zele qui a tourjours paru en sa Saintete pour procurer ladvantage
de la religion catolique en ce peis et la passion que jay par tout les
moyens possibles de contribuer, moblige a communi que a sa saintete a quoy
la conjonction presante menase de la reduire; et de proposer a Sa Satete
les melieurs expedients que je puis trouuer pour y remidier a fin de voir
sette descharge de mestre aquitee de tout ce qui despandoit de moy tout le
monde a ases de congnoisance de v[~re] piete et moy ases de preuues de
v[~re] affection pour massurer que vous contribures de bon coeur a se
deseing: en quoy le secret est sy important que je nay pas trouue apropos
de vous envoyer une personne expres de peur de donner ombrage ysy qui
pouroit fort nuir aux affaires du Roy Monseigneur et des catoliques: la
Violence avec quoy le parlement a commance contre les catoliques a oblige
le Roy Monseigneur a leur accorder la demande quils ont faite de banir les
catoliques a dix milles de Londre, ils commansent a faire une riguoreuse
recherche contre touts les prestres et menasent de mestre toute les loix
les plus severes en execution contre eux qui vont jusques au sang, et moy
mesme suis menacee de avoir mon contract de marriage rompu: et
particulierement en se qui est des prestres; et la misere est que les
affaires du Roy Monseigneur ne luy permette pas de soposer a toute sette
violance a quoy il a bien paru depuis son avenemant a la couronne que son
naturel ne a pas estte porte car au contaire il soufre maintenant pour sa
bonte envers seux de [~nr]e religion; jay songe a un moyen et le seull que
se tamps sy permet pour prevenir une grande partie de ses violances qui est
pour employer de largent pour gagner les principaux de sette faction
puritaine, et je croye avoir tellemant dispoise mon deseing quil ne me
manquera que argent pour en venir about: les desordres de se peis sy
randent impossible de trouuer ysy une telle somme dargent quil faudroit a
cause _de lesclat que sela feroit_, se qui pouroit aussy frustrer le
sucses: sest pour quoy jay cru en premier lieu estre obligee davoir recours
a sa Saintete pour luy demander son assistance en une occasion sy presante
et le danger sy ineuitable sans se remede a fin quil voye quil nia rien que
je ne desire exposer en sette cause je mofre a donner telle caution qui
sera valable pour la somme de cinc cent mil escus; car les catoliques
estant une fois eschapes de se parlement present il ne oroit que a esperer
et rien a craindre dhors en avant et le seul moyent est seluy que je
propose: sest pourquoy je vous prie de communiquer sesy a Sa Saintete, a
qui je suplie tres humblement de ne le consulter quavec vous car sy sela
venoit a estre seu je serois perduee; et de me faire responce la plus
prompte que sera possible, et selon v[~re] resolution, vous pouues envoyer
les lettres de change a Paris pour me les faire tenir ysy et le plus
secretement que faire se peut. Je ne doute pas que si il plaist a sa Stete
de masister en ce deseing de remestre les catoliques en repos et de porter
le Roy Monseigneur a leur faire plus de grases que jamais. En tout cas
joray le temognage de sa Stete et le v[~re] davoir fait de mon coste tout
mon possible pour faire reusir se deseing sy bon et utille a la religion;
je nay que faire a vous presser de contribuer a sesy v[~re] piete vous
porte ases a le faire seullemant une prompte responce la queue jatans par
le mesme porteur le quel jay envoye a Paris pour vous faire tenir selle sy
par Mr. le nonce la faire demandant rien plus que la diligence et le secret
je me remest a la prudence de Sa Stete. et a la vostre et demeureray.

  Mon cousin,
             V[~re] bien affectionne cousine,

                HENRIETTE MARIE R.

  Il nia personne que sa Stete.
       vous et moy qui sache se sy encore.


III

THOMASOM TRACTS

The Queene's Proceedings in Holland. Being the copie of a letter from the
Staple at Middleborough to Mr. Vanrode a Dutch Marchant in London. (19 Dec.
1642.).... Colonel Goring is travelled into Ortoys and Flanders to raise
forces of Men and Armour, he having a Commission from the King of France to
take a certaine number from each Garrison, for the Queene and present
supply for England. Colonel Gage who is Colonell over the English in
Flanders, gave Colonel Goring a Challenge for presuming to beat up his
Drums to flock away his Officers and Souldiers, nevertheless the souldiers
being poore and long behind of their contribution mony agreed, and five or
600 English followed Colonel Goring to Dunkirke, Newport, Ostend, and
Graveling, where they now remaine till they be Shipt for England, there
hath bin great meanes to the States that these Souldiers might bee
permitted to passe through their Country and so take shipping for England,
but the Queene nor the Ambassador can prevaile with the States for their
consents therein. I have also here set you downe the summes of money raised
amongst the Priests, Jesuites, Seminaries, Friers, Nuns, and holy Sisters
through the land, and paid in to the Jesuites of St. Omers his Colledge
towards the maintenance of his Majesties warres. And first as in order the
English Cloyster at St. Omers,[446] the Jesuits have raised 3000 pounds,
besides the Taxes they have imposed upon every Scholler 5_l._ a man being
about 400, and that if any shall refuse the payment thereof to lose their
Degrees in the House, and be for ever discharged for having any future
benefit therein: in which Colledge the sum collected amounts about 3500_l_,
Secondly at Ayres, the summe collected amounts unto 500_l_, Thirdly, at
Beteone, the summe collected amounts unto 500_l_, Fourthly at Arras, the
some of 2000_l_, Fifthly at the University of Doway 1000_l_, Sixtly at
Gaunt, betweene the Colledge of English and Irish Priests, and the Matron
of the Nunnes there, was Collected 500_l_, Seventhly at Durmount, 50_l_,
eightly at Bruzels, from the Countesse of Westmoreland, and the Lady
Babthorpe, Matrons of the holy Nuns, and the three Cloysters English,
Irish, and Walloons, 3000_l_, Ninthly at Lovain, 1000_l_, Tenthly at
Bridges, 300_l_, Eleventhly at Casteele, 200_l_, Twelfely at Newport
200_l_, Thirteenth at Ostend 100_l_, Fourteenth at Graveling, 100_l_,
Fifteenth at Dunkerke, 500_l_, all which summes amounteth about 15000_l_,
have bin Collected and in the hands of Father Browne the Head of St. Omers
Colledges, besides 5000_l_ more gathered from the Governours of every Towne
Village or petty Dorpe, which makes the sum of 20 thousand pounds, all
which is intended to be transported to his Majesty from Dunkirke, besides
the weekely allowance the Colledges will disburse towards the maintenance
of the five hundred Souldiers under the command of Colonell Goring during
his Majesties warres with the Parliament....

[Footnote 446: The inaccuracies with regard to St. Omers are probably
typical of those with regard to the other places. St. Omers was at this
time very poor. The pupils numbered 60, not 400; the Superior's name was
Port, not Browne.

There is no trace of such a collection in the records of Les Dames
Anglaises at Bruges.]


IV

AFFAIRES ETRANGÈRES ANG., T. 49

_Walter Montague to Cardinal Mazarin_ (_apparently_)

La Haye 9 February 1642 [O.S.].

Les mesmes tempestes qu'ont rejette la Reyne en Hollande m'ont retenu icy
car d'abord quelle fut partye le mauvais temps ne nous pouvoit rien
promestre de meilleur sur son renvoy icy ce qua este le 9 iour apres son
embarquement ayant endure le peril sept iours de tempeste continuelle
n'ayant ramene que trois de ses vaisslaux en ayant perdu un avec tout son
equipage descuyrie et les autres encore sont demeures en doute de leur
salut: le peril ou elle a este, a este si grand quelle eut bien pu
iustifier sa mort de peur mais Dieu luy a donne un soutien par sa grace:
... elle na iamais tesmoigne aprehension dans les preparatifs de la mort
que pour les affaires de Dieu et du Roy son mary: les relations que les
peres en font sont si extraordinaires quelle ont besoin dune telle
authorité pour les faire croyables. Le iour apres quelle debarqua (ce
quelle fit dans un petit bateau de pescheur trouve a la mer) elle receut
nouvelle dune trahison decouverte dans son armee pour la livrer entre les
mains des rebelles mais aussi beaucoup des instances de la part du Roy et
du pays pour sa venue avec grand apparence de surete pour sa persone et
grande aprehension de confusion dans les affaires sans l'assistance de sa
presence tellement quelle se resoult contre tous les sentiments de son sexe
et de sa sante mesme de se rambarquer au plus tost ... elle a fait grande
perte dans ce naufrage mais elle a gagne dans l'opinion de tous les temoins
ce quelle ne scauroit iamais perdre....


V

P.R.O. ROMAN TRANSCRIPTS

(_To Cardinal Barberini_)

  Mon cousin,

Les bons effets que vous m'aues rendu de v[~re] amitie et particulierement
en les vingt et cinque mille escus, que vous m'auez fourny par le Baron
Herbert filtz du Marquis Wostre ont bien fait voyr le sentiment que vous
auez des nos souffrances et de l'estat de nos affayres icy. Je vous supplye
de croyre que comme j'embrasse auec une singuliere affection cette v[~re]
bonne volonte envers nous, aussy vous fairray je paroystre la gratitude que
j'en ay en toute occasion qui se presentera a ce fayre estant.

                        Mon cousin,
                            vostre affectionnee cousine,

                                    HENRIETTE MARIE R.

  D'Oxford ce 20^{me} de Septembre 1643.

(The transcriber notes that the hand is like that of the King and that the
signature is "Vostre affectionnee cousine," instead of the Queen's usual
"Vostre tres affectionnee cousine"; he also notes the use of the pronoun
"nous.")


VI

ARCHIVES OF THE SEE OF WESTMINSTER

_Endorsed_ Securitus in jurando. 1645.

Si ex una parte dignabitur regia Maiestus liberare Catholicus suos subditos
à timore legum poenalium edictarum contra Recusantes ob causam Reliquiis
eis qué certo et constanter concedere liberum usum Catholicae Religionis
intra privatos parietes.

Dicti Subditi ex altera parte exhibent se parotos ex hac hora ad fidem et
obedientiam suae maiestati perpetuò ac firmiter servandam sub solemni
juramento; quantum libet augeatur Catholicorum numerus in posterum vel
conspirent ullo tempore inter se quincunque Principes esterii ad
restituendum, sen stabiliendum vi et armis publicum usum Catholicae
religionis in hoc Regno.

Ad maius robur (si expedire videbitur) addi potest Breve pontificum, quod
sine dubio sua S^{tas} facile concedet, pro ratificatione seu confirmatione
dicti juramenti.


VII

P.R.O. ROMAN TRANSCRIPTS

(_To Innocent X_)

  Tressaint Pere,

Le sieur Crashau ayant esté Ministre en Angleterre et nourri dans les
Universités de ce pais parmy des gens tres esloignes des sentiments de
nostre Sainte Religion sest toutes fois par sa lecture et son estude rendu
Catholique et pour en jouïr plus paisiblement l'exercise, s'est transporté
en decà et vescu prés d'un an aupres de moy, ou par le bon example de sa
vie il a beaucoup edifié tous ceux qui ont, conversé avec luy. Ce qui m'a
convié s'en allant presentem á Rome d'escrire ce mot á vostre Ste pour la
prier de le considerer comme une personne de qui les Catholique Anglois ont
conceu de grandes esperances, et que j'estime beaucoup, et de luy departir
ses graces, et faveurs aux occasions qui se presenteront. Ce que
j'estim[~ea]y parmy les autres obligations particulieres que jay a V.S. Et
sur ce je prie Dieu Tressaint Père quil conserve V.S. longues années pour
le bien et utilité de son Esglise.

De S. Germain-en-Laye ce 7 Septembre 1646.

                   V[~re] tres devotte fille

                                 HENRIETTE MARIE R.


VIII

ARCHIVES OF THE SEE OF WESTMINSTER

Upon the Ground given in the 12th Proposall, printed August the first 1647,
by authoritie from his Excellence Sir Thomas Fayrfax, that All the Penall
statutes in force against Roman Catholickes shall be repealed.

And further that they shall enjoy the liberty of theyr consciencés, by
Grant from the Parliament; It may bee enacted that it shall not be lawfull
for any person or persons beeinge subiects to the Crowne of England to
professe or acknowledge for truth, or perswade others to beeleive these
ensuinge Propositions.

1

That the Pope or church, hath powre to absolve any person or persons
whatsoeuer, from his or theyr obedience to the Civill Government
established in this Nation.

2

That it is lawfull in it selfe or by the Popes dispensation to break eyther
word or oath with any Heretickes.

3

That it is lawfull by the Pope, or churches command or dispensation to
kill, destroy, or otherwise to iniure or offende any person or persons
whatsoever because hee or they are accused, or condemned, censured, or
exco[~m]unicated for Error, Schisme or Heresy.

The premises considered wee on the other side sett our hands that every one
of these three propositions may bee lawfully answered unto in the Negative.



INDEX


  Abercorn, James Hamilton, Earl of, 121

  Aiguillon, Duchess of, 268

  Alexander, Sir William, Earl of Stirling, 116

  Andrewes, Lancelot, Bishop of Winchester, 109

  Angus, William Douglas, Earl of, 114

  Anne of Austria, Queen of France--
    Wife of Louis XIII, 3;
    disliked by Richelieu, 15;
    relations with Buckingham, 15, 16, 22-4, 66-8;
    intrigues against France, 131;
    falls under Mazarin's influence, 207;
    receives Henrietta in Paris, 219;
    death of, 309, 310;
    mentioned, 12, 34, 49, 208, 220, 225, 252, 260, 266, 273, 280, 283,
    284, 286, 289, 293, 314

  Ashburnham, John, 131

  Aubert, Maurice, 56 _n._

  Ayton, Sir Robert, 69, 160


  Banbury, Elizabeth, Countess of, 222

  Barberini, Cardinal Francesco--
    His interest in England, 110, 118;
    Henrietta's letters to, 175-7;
    policy with regard to Ireland, 231;
    men., 121, 122, 124, 125, 136, 160, 163, 164, 178, 231, 243

  Bassompierre, Marshal de--
    His mission to England, 57-60;
    men., 286, 287

  Bellièvre, M. de, 143

  Berkeley, Sir John, 240, 241

  Bernini, 111

  Berthaud, Eugénie Madeline, 290

  Bérulle, Cardinal--
    Sent to Rome to procure dispensation, 6;
    friend of Mary de' Medici, 169;
    Henrietta's confessor, 23;
    character of, 21-2;
    death of, 81;
    men., 11, 23, 34, 38, 40, 45, 60, 76, 95, 96, 98, 103, 109, 110, 112,
    169, 277

  Blainville, Marquis de, 39-46

  Bossuet, Jacques Bénigne--
    Preaches Henrietta's funeral sermon at Chaillot, 316;
    men., 31, 202

  Bouillon, Duke of, 232

  Bristol, John Digby, 1st Earl of, 212

  Bristol, George Digby, 2nd Earl of, 190, 196, 212, 224, 251

  Brook, Sir Basil, 173

  Browne, Sir Richard, 266, 292

  Buckingham, George Villiers, Duke of--
    Relations with Anne of Austria, 15, 16, 22, 23, 66-8;
    his conduct to Henrietta and her household, 35 _sqq._;
    death of, 62;
    men., 5, 7, 67, 130, 135, 137, 221, 310

  Buckingham, Mary, Countess of, 25, 42, 79

  Buckingham, Katherine, Duchess of, 139


  Cary, Patrick, 249

  Carlisle, James Hay, Earl of--
    Ambassador at Henrietta's marriage, 5 _sqq._;
    men., 46, 50, 51, 57, 66

  Carlisle, Lucy, Countess of, 66-8, 152, 157, 186, 191

  Carter, Master, 205

  Casimir, King of Poland, 314

  Catherine of Braganza, wife of Charles II, 307-9

  Caussin, Father, 282, 283

  Chantal, Jeanne, Mother, 279, 285

  Charles I, King of England--
    His marriage, 4 _sqq._;
    harshness of, to his wife, 28 _sqq._;
    subserviency of, to Buckingham, 5, 38 _sqq._;
    gentleness of, to Catholics, 107 _sqq._;
    signs Strafford's death-warrant, 185;
    final parting of, from his wife, 213;
    takes refuge with Scotch, 238;
    sold to English, 239;
    in hands of Independents, 240;
    execution of, 254;
    men., _passim_

  Charles II, King of England--
    Birth of, 64, 65;
    men., 147, 180, 219, 257, 261, 264, 265, 268, 269, 270, 272, 275, 302,
    303, 304, 307, 308, 316, 317

  Chateauneuf, Marquis of--
    His mission to England, 78 _sqq._;
    enemy of Richelieu, 80; men., 84, 85, 89, 99, 221, 225

  Chaulnes, Duchess of, 22

  Chaulnes, Duke of, 19

  Chevreuse, Mme de, 5, 16, 18, 21, 22, 30, 36, 49, 66, 80, 82, 85, 146,
  147, 152, 158-60, 218, 219, 224, 225, 319

  Chevreuse, Duke of--
    Proxy for Charles at his marriage, 8 _sqq._;
    men., 159

  Christine, of France, Duchess of Savoy, 2, 3, 135, 188, 267, 280, 303

  Cholmondley, Sir Hugh, 205

  Clarendon, Edward Hyde, 1st Earl of, 235, 261, 265, 305

  Clifford, William, 318

  Con, George--
    Arrives at Court, 122;
    death of, 125;
    men., 114-16, 123, 124, 129, 136-8, 149, 150, 160, 161, 164, 173

  Cosin, John, Bishop of Durham, 137, 266

  Cowley, Abraham, 221, 222

  Crashaw, Richard, 221, 222, 249

  Cromwell, Oliver, 239, 273-5

  Culpepper, John Culpepper, Lord, 240, 241, 261

  Cyprien de Gamache, Father, 100, 107, 254, 255, 306, 308


  D'Avenant, Sir William, 154, 222, 238

  Denbigh, Susan, Countess of, 68, 137, 181, 194, 200, 220, 222

  Denbigh, William Fielding, Earl of, 181, 220

  Denham, Sir John, 240

  Des Anges, Mother, 133

  D'Ewes, Sir Simonds, 74

  Digby, Sir Kenelm--
    Goes to Rome as Henrietta's ambassador, 231;
    his conduct there, 233 _sqq._;
    men., 144, 145, 150, 164, 172, 173, 178, 180, 250 _n._

  Dorset, Frances, Countess of, 65

  Douglas, Sir Robert, 114-17

  Du Perron, Jacques Nowell--
    Arrives in England, 100;
    death of, 259;
    men., 101, 128, 136, 197, 226-8, 266


  Elizabeth of England, daughter of Charles I, 267

  Elizabeth of England, Queen of Bohemia, 195, 212

  Elizabeth of France, Queen of Spain, 2, 3, 230

  Estrades, Count of, 143

  Evelyn, John, 132, 266, 287


  Fairfax, Sir Thomas, 245

  Falkland, Lucius Cary, Viscount, 132, 249

  Faure, Francis, Bishop of Amiens, 314

  Fayette, Louise de la--
    Relations with Louis XIII, 280-5;
    Superior of Chaillot, 295, 296;
    friendship with Henrietta, 297;
    death of, 299;
    men., 286, 290, 293, 294, 298, 303

  Fayette, Mme de la, 293

  Felton, John, 62

  FitzWilliams, Colonel, 229

  Fontenay-Mareuil, Marquis of, 83, 84, 102

  Ford, Sir Edward, 240


  Gaston of France, Duke of Orleans, 8, 12, 17, 24-6, 49, 51, 81, 82, 219,
  309

  Goffe, Stephen, 223

  Gondi, Jean François de, Archbishop of Paris, 9, 10, 286, 289, 295

  Goodman, Godfrey, Bishop of Gloucester, 109, 171

  Goring, George Goring, Lord, 181-3

  Grebner, Paul, 192

  Gressy, M. de, 208, 223


  Habington, William, 63

  Hamilton, James Hamilton, Duke of, 64

  Hamilton, Anne, Marchioness of, 137

  Hamilton, Mary, 290

  Hamilton, Sir William, 121, 163, 164

  Hatton, of Kirby--
    Christopher Hatton, Baron, 263, 271

  Harcourt, Count of, 208, 209

  Hobbes, Thomas, 222, 267

  Holden, Henry, 248

  Holland, Henry Rich, Earl of, 5, 6, 9 _sqq._, 61, 73, 83, 85-7, 117, 147,
  162, 186, 212

  Henrietta Maria, Queen of England--
    Birth and early years, 1 _sqq._;
    her personal appearance, 4, 5, 74;
    betrothal, 8;
    marriage, 9 _sqq_;
    departure for England, 17;
    at Amiens, 19-23;
    at Boulogne, 23-5;
    sails for England, 26;
    early relations with her husband, 28 _sqq._;
    her household, 30-3;
    conduct of Buckingham to, 35 _sqq._;
    Charles' unkindness to, 41-5;
    goes to Tyburn, 47;
    her household expelled, 51-5;
    her letter to Bishop of Mende, 53, 54;
    her married happiness, 60-2, 91;
    her children, 63, 65;
    her friendships, 65, 66, 73;
    her theatricals, 69-72;
    her wardrobe, 74-6;
    intrigues with Jars and Chateauneuf against Richelieu and Portland, 88;
    development of her character, 88, 89;
    her relations with English Catholics, 95 _sqq._;
    receives Capuchins, 99;
    builds chapel at Somerset House, 101-3;
    pleads with Charles for Catholics, 105;
    sends Douglas to Rome, 114-17;
    receives Panzani, 118;
    sends Hamilton to Rome, 121;
    her affection for Con, 123;
    writes to Christine on Montagu's behalf, 135;
    scene in her chapel, 140;
    procures Jars' release, 144, 145;
    writes urging Catholics to contribute to expenses of Scotch war, 150;
    further development of her character, 152;
    acts in _Salmacida Spolia_: relations with her mother, 158;
    attempts to gain Cardinal's hat for Montagu, 160;
    counsels calling of Parliament, 165;
    relations with Richelieu, 169;
    submits to Parliament, 174;
    her letter to Barberini, 175-7;
    efforts to keep open communications with Rome, 178;
    refused a refuge in France, 180;
    efforts to save Strafford, 181;
    her share in army plot, 182;
    last interview with Rosetti, 187;
    accused of complicity in Irish rebellion, 190;
    urges Charles to arrest five members, 191;
    change in her character, 193;
    goes to Holland, 194;
    her activity there, 196;
    letters to Charles, 198, 199;
    shipwrecked, 200, 201;
    reception at Burlington Bay, 203;
    her military career, 204;
    at Oxford, 205-13;
    at Exeter, 214;
    escapes to France, 215;
    reception of, in Paris, 219;
    asks for money from French clergy, 226;
    intrigues with Confederate Catholics, 229 _sqq._;
    sends Digby to Rome, 231;
    refuses to receive Rinuccini, 236;
    weakness of her policy, 251;
    grief on Charles' death, 255-7;
    counsels Anne of Austria, 260;
    head of "Louvre party," 261, 262;
    attempts to convert Gloucester, 267-72;
    claims her dowry, 273;
    goes to convent in Rue S. Antoine, 279;
    founds Chaillot, 286 _sqq._;
    her life there, 292, 296, 297;
    her letter to nuns on death of Mother de la Fayette, 299;
    her joy at the Restoration, 303;
    returns to England, 305;
    returns again to France, 306;
    her last visit to England, 307;
    last journey to France, 309;
    her last years, 309;
    death of, 311;
    funeral of, 313-16;
    her estate, 316, 317;
    supposed marriage with Jermyn, 317 _n._

  Henrietta of England, Duchess of Orleans--
    Birth of, 214;
    marriage of, 307;
    death of, 317;
    men., 215, 253, 268, 272, 293, 296, 304, 309, 312, 315, 316

  Henry IV, King of France, 1-3, 65, 92, 96, 105, 126, 128, 142, 174, 180,
  194, 204, 211, 216, 253, 257, 272, 273, 280, 285, 308, 309, 312, 315

  Henry of England, Duke of Gloucester--
    Henrietta's attempt to convert him, 267-72;
    death of, 304;
    men., 169


  Innocent X--
    His refusal to help Henrietta, 249, 250;
    men., 222, 231, 234, 235, 241, 248


  James I, King of England, 6, 7, 48, 108, 127, 128

  James, Duke of York (James II), 198, 261, 272, 301, 305, 307, 317

  Jars, Chevalier de, 78, 83, 84, 85, 87, 89, 90, 144, 145, 219

  Jones, Inigo, 154

  Jonson, Ben, 69, 154


  Killigrew, Thomas, 132, 134


  Lambert, Father, 315 _n._

  Laud, William, Archbishop of Canterbury, 69, 88, 108-10, 127, 138, 139,
  141, 166, 171

  Leander de S. Martino, Father, 33 _n._

  Leicester, Robert Sidney, Earl of, 168

  Lennox, James Stuart, Duke of, 64

  Lewknor, Sir Lewis, 34 _n._

  Leybourn, George, 247

  Lhulier, Mother, 286, 288, 290, 295

  Lilly, William, 106, 192 _n._

  Louis XIII, King of France--
    At Henrietta's wedding, 8 _sqq._;
    relations with his wife, 15;
    death of, 207;
    relations with Louise de la Fayette, 281-5;
    men., 3, 16, 17, 19, 27, 38, 45, 49, 50, 54, 55, 60, 67, 95, 102, 145,
    157, 197, 221

  Louis XIV, King of France, 153, 219, 252, 259, 266, 274, 293, 303, 304,
  311, 312, 315-17

  Louise of the Palatine, 294, 295


  Magdeleine of S. Joseph, Mother, 11

  Manchester, Edward Montagu, Baron Montagu of Kimbolton, afterwards 2nd
  Earl of, 190, 211, 262

  Manchester, Henry Montagu, 1st Earl of, 72, 131

  Mary of England, daughter of Charles I, 181, 194-6

  Mary de' Medici, Queen of France--
    Satisfaction of, at Henrietta's marriage, 6;
    anger at dismissal of her household, 56;
    takes refuge in England, 145-8;
    death of, 197;
    men., 1, 2, 4, 12, 16, 17, 22, 23, 31, 40, 48, 75, 79, 80, 98, 103,
    143, 158, 161, 162

  Mary, Queen of Scotland, 10, 26, 115, 260

  Matthew, Sir Tobie--
    His character of Henrietta, 25;
    men., 24, 138, 166, 180

  Mayerne, Sir Theodore, 63, 104, 123, 179, 214, 215, 311

  Mazarin, Cardinal--
    His friendship with Montagu, 197, 206;
    successor of Richelieu, 207;
    his policy, 208;
    his distrust of Henrietta, 224, 225;
    his alliance with Cromwell, 273;
    death of, 309;
    men., 206, 209, 216, 223, 224, 228, 230, 232, 238, 239, 252, 253, 259,
    260, 274, 275, 302, 305, 309

  Mende, Daniel du Plessis, Bishop of, 31-4, 36, 37, 40, 41, 46-8, 50, 51,
  53, 54, 59-61, 96, 101, 220, 221

  Montagu, Ralph Montagu, Duke of, 311, 312

  Montagu, Viscount, Francis Brown, 222

  Montagu, Walter--
    Friendship of, with Henrietta, 7 and _passim_;
    with Anne of Austria, 49, 131, 207, 209, 262, 263, 310;
    with Mazarin, 197;
    conversion of, 130-6;
    imprisonment of, 209;
    takes orders, 263;
    death of, 318;
    men., 48, 71, 72, 82, 83, 85, 138, 144, 145, 148, 150, 159, 160, 163,
    164, 172, 173, 178, 180, 182, 197, 201, 219, 246, 262, 265-7, 269-72,
    291, 292, 305, 306, 313

  Montague, Richard, Bishop of Chichester, 109

  Montglas, Mme de, 331

  Montpensier, Mlle de (later Duchess of Orleans), 12, 51, 221, 272

  Montpensier, Mlle de (daughter of Gaston, Duke of Orleans), 219, 257

  Montreuil, Jean de, 166, 169

  Montrose, James Graham, Marquis of, 205, 238

  Motteville, Mme de, 28, 35, 61, 196, 143, 203, 221, 279, 281, 285, 293,
  294, 298, 309, 310


  Newcastle, William Cavendish, Earl of (later Marquis and Duke), 202, 205

  Newport, Anne, Countess of, 137, 138

  Newport, Mountjoy Blount, Earl of, 138, 159

  Nicholas, Sir Edward, 261, 238

  Northumberland, Algernon Percy, Earl of, 154

  Norwich, George Goring, Earl of, 13, 162, 194, 223, 224


  Orange, Frederick Henry, Prince of, 194, 201, 218, 223

  Orange, William, Prince of, 181, 196

  Orange, William, Prince of (William III), 317

  O'Hartegan, Father, 229-31, 236

  Ormonde, James Butler, Marquis of, 237, 247, 261, 265


  Panzani, Gregorio, 120, 129, 137, 188, 189

  Patin, Gui, 314

  Pendrick, Robert, 178

  Percy, Henry, 73, 183, 220, 244

  Peters, Hugh, 240

  Philip of France, Duke of Anjou, later of Orleans, 219, 304, 315, 317

  Philip, Father Robert--
    Henrietta's confessor, 55;
    enemy of Richelieu, 82, 99;
    sent to Tower, 186;
    death of, 265;
    men., 113, 117, 150, 182, 194, 215, 244

  Portland, Richard Weston, Earl of, 81, 85, 87, 88, 123

  Prynne, William, 72

  Pym, John, 66, 161, 171, 177, 183, 186, 191


  Retz, Cardinal de, 9, 220, 252

  Richelieu, Cardinal--
    Arranges Henrietta's marriage, 4 _sqq._;
    his spies, 33;
    intrigues against him, 80 _sqq._;
    relations of, with English Catholics, 94, 95;
    dislike of, to Henrietta, 142, 143;
    releases Jars, 144, 145;
    relations of, with England, 167, 168;
    refuses to receive Henrietta in France, 179;
    friend of Puritans, 191;
    death of, 206;
    relations of, with Louise de la Fayette, 181-3;
    men., 1, 30, 33, 34, 40, 49, 56, 59, 67, 78, 80, 85, 86, 88, 89, 104,
    113, 117, 127, 134, 135, 152, 160, 169, 191, 197, 218

  Richmond, Frances, Duchess of, 64

  Rinuccini, Giovanni Battista--
    His embassy in Ireland, 255 _sqq._

  Rochefoucault, Cardinal de, 9, 13

  Rosetti, Count--
    His first impressions of England, 161;
    leaves England, 187, 188;
    men., 129, 162, 164, 170, 173, 174, 176-8

  Roxburgh, Jane, Countess of, 65, 194

  Rubens, Peter Paul, 70, 103, 111, 211

  Rupert, Prince, 212

  Rutland, Cecily, dowager Countess of, 151


  Sabran, M. de, 215, 223

  St. Albans, Henry Jermyn, Earl of--
    His friendship with Henrietta, 73;
    concerned in army plot, 182 _sqq._;
    with Henrietta in France, 220;
    his influence over her, 238; reported
    marriage with, 317 _n._;
    death of, 318;
    men., 82, 86, 87, 196, 198, 203, 214-16, 230, 237, 243, 251, 254, 261,
    265, 274, 305, 306, 312

  S. Georges, Mme, 9, 31, 38, 44, 52, 53, 54, 58, 60, 61, 65, 80, 199, 221

  Sancta Clara, Father, 120, 124

  Sales, S. Francis de, 280, 286, 314

  Salvetti, 142, 185

  Saucy, Father, 39, 58

  Scarampi, 235 _n._

  Séguier, Mother Jeanne, 197, 319

  Senault, Father, 315

  Smith, William, Bishop of Chalcedon, 95, 112-14, 117, 232

  Soissons, Count of, 3, 12

  Strafford, Thomas Wentworth, Earl of--
    Thrown into prison, 171;
    his trial, 180;
    execution, 185;
    men., 66, 88, 138, 156, 157, 159, 161, 162, 184, 190, 252

  Suckling, Sir John, 72, 183

  Surin, Father, 133


  Tillières, Count Leveneur de, 29, 30, 35, 38, 39, 51, 57, 125, 287, 288

  Tillières, Mme de, 31, 52

  Tomkins, Master, 211


  Urban VIII, 6, 14, 33, 57, 110, 113-18, 121-4, 136, 172, 175-7, 187, 230,
  231, 235


  Valette, Duke of, 159, 179

  Vane, Sir Henry, 170

  Vantelet, Mme de, 55, 57, 82, 87

  Van Dyck, Anthony, 25, 62, 111, 155

  Velada, Marquis of, 159

  Vendôme, Duchess of, 255

  Viette, Father, 55 _n._, 315 _n._

  Ville-aux-clercs, M. de (Comte du Brienne), 6 _n._, 27, 39, 64


  Wadding, Father Luke, 234, 235

  Waller, Edmund, 69, 211, 306

  White, Thomas, 243, 244, 248

  Williams, John, Bishop of Lincoln, later Archbishop of York, 32

  Winchester, William Paulet, Marquis of, 97, 246

  Windbank, Francis, 90, 120, 121, 163, 164, 168, 170, 182





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