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to go as ambassador to the Spanish court. His view with Francis, and another with the Emperor, situation there was rendered exceedingly difficult, whose friendship for the king of France he proby the mutual insincerity of the negotiating nounced, from all that he observed, to be insinpowers, and by his religion, which exposed him “ He is constrained (said the English to prejudice, and even at one time to danger from ambassador) to come to a show of friendship, the Inquisition. He had to invest Henry's meaning to make him a mockery when he has bullying romonstrances with the graces of mode- done." When events are made familiar to us rate diplomacy, and to keep terms with a by history, we are perhaps disposed to under. bigoted court while he questioned the Pope's value the wisdom that foretold them ; but this supremacy. In spite of those obstacles, the much is clear, that if Charles's rival had been dignity and discernment of Wyat gave him such as wise as Sir Thomas Wyat, the Emperor weight in negotiation, that he succeeded in ex- would not have made a mockery of Francis. pelling from Spain his master's most dreaded Wyat's advice to his own sovereign at this enemy, Cardinal Pole, who was so ill received at period, was to support the Duke of Cleves, and Madrid that the haughty legate quitted it with to ingratiate himself with the German pro. indignation. The records of his different embas- testant princes. His zeal was praised; but the sies exhibit not only personal activity in follow- advice, though sanctioned by Cromwell, was not ing the Emperor Charles to his most important followed by Henry. Warned probably, at last, interviews with Francis, but sagacity in fore- of the approaching downfall of Cromwell, he seeing consequences, and in giving advice to his obtained his final recal from Spain. On his own sovereign. Neither the dark policy, nor return, Bonner had sufficient interest to get him the immoveable countenance of Charles, eluded committed to the Tower, where he was harshly his penetration. When the Emperor, on the treated and unfairly tried, but was nevertheless death of Lady Jane Seymour, offered the most honourably acquitted ; and Henry, satisfied King of England the Duchess of Milan in mar- of his innocence, made him considerable donariage, Henry's avidity caught at the offer of her tions of land. Leland informs us, that about duchy, and Heynes and Bonner were sent out to this time he had the command of a ship of war. Spain as special commissioners on the business ; The sea service was not then, as it is now, a disbut it fell off, as Wyat had predicted, from the tinct profession. Spanish monarch's insincerity.
Much of his time, however, after his return Bonner, who had done no good to the English to England, must be supposed, from his writings, mission, and who had felt himself lowered at the to have been spent at his paternal seat of AllingSpanish court by the superior ascendancy of ton, in study and rural amusements. From that Wyat, on his return home sought to indemnify pleasant retreat he was summoned, in the autumn himself for the mortification, by calumniating his of 1542, by order of the king, to meet the Spanish late colleague. In order to answer those calum- ambassador, who had landed at Falmouth, and nies, Wyat was obliged to obtain his recal from to conduct him from thence to London. In his Spain; and Bonner's charges, on being investi- zeal to perform this duty he accidentally overgated, fell to the ground. But the Emperor's heated himself with riding, and was seized, at journey through France having raised another Sherborne, with a malignant fever, which carried crisis of expectation, Wyat was sent out once him off, after a few days' illness, in his thirtymore to watch the motions of Charles, and to fathom his designs. At Blois he had an inter
WALPOLE, Ellis, and Warton, gravely inform, Wood", and from him copied, by mistake, by us that Lord Surrey contributed to the victory Walpole and Warton, sends the poet on his of Flodden, a victory which was gained before romantic tour to Italy, as the knight errant of Lord Surrey was born. The mistakes of such the fair Geraldine. There is no proof, however, writers may teach charity to criticism. Dr. that Surrey was ever in Italy. At the period of Nott, who has cleared away much fable and his imagined errantry, his repeated appearance anachronism from the noble poet's biography, at the court of England can be ascertained ; and supposes that he was born in or about the year Geraldine, if she was a daughter of the Earl 1516, and that he was educated at Cambridge, of Kildare, was then only a child of seven years of which university he was afterwards elected oldt. high steward. At the early age of sixteen he That Surrey entertained romantic sentiments was contracted in marriage to the Lady Frances for the fair Geraldine, seems, however, to admit Vere, daughter to John Earl of Oxford. The of little doubt ; and that too at a period of her Duke of Richmond was afterwards affianced to youth which makes his homage rather surprising. Surrey's sister. It was customary, in those The fashion of the age sanctioned such courttimes, to delay, frequently for years, the con- ' ships, under the liberal interpretation of their summations of such juvenile matches; and the being platonic. Both Sir P. Sydney and the writer of Lord Surrey's life, already mentioned, Chevalier Bayard avowed attachments of this gives reasons for supposing that the poet's exalted nature to married ladies, whose reputaresidence at Windsor, and his intimate friend tions were never sullied, even when the mistress ship with Richmond, so tenderly recorded in his wept openly at parting from her admirer. Of verses, took place, not in their absolute child the nature of Surrey's attachment we may conjechood, as has been generally imagined, but imme ture what we please, but can have no certain test diately after their being contracted to their even in his verses, which might convey either respective brides. If this was the case, the much more or much less than he felt ; and how poet's allusion to
shall we search in the graves of men for the The secret groves which oft we made resound
shades and limits of passions that elude our living Of pleasant plaint, and of our ladies' praise.
observation ? may be charitably understood as only recording
* Nash's History of Jack Wilton. the aspirations of their conjugal impatience. † If concurring proofs did not so strongly point out his
poetical mistress Geraldine to be the daughter of the Earl Surrey's marriage was consummated in 1535.
of Kildare, we might well suspect, from the date of In the subsequent year he sat with his father, as
Surrey's attachment, that the object of his praises must Earl Marshal, on the trial of his kinswoman have been some other person. Geraldine, when he deAnne Boleyn. Of the impression which that
clared his devotion to ber, was only thirteen years of age.
She was taken, in her childhood, under tbe protection of event made upon his mind, there is no trace to
the court, and attended the Prir.cess Mary. At the age be found either in his poetry, or in tradition. of fifteen she married Sir Anthony Wood, a man of His grief for the amiable Richmond, whom he sixty, and after his death accepted the Earl of Lincoln. lost soon after, is more satisfactorily testified.
From Surrey's verses we find that she slighted bis ad
dresses, after having for some time encouraged them ; It is about this period that the fiction of Nash, and from his conduct it appears that he hurried into war unfaithfully misapplied as reality by Anthony , and public business in order to forgot her indifference.
Towards the close-of 1540, Surrey embarked approach with 60,000 men, the English made an in public business. A rupture with France able retreat, of which Surrey conducted the being anticipated, he was sent over to that king movements as marshal of the camp. dom, with Lord Russell and the Earl of South He returned with his father to England, but ampton, to see that everything was in a proper must have made only a short stay at home, as state of defence within the English pale. He we find him soon after fighting a spirited action had previously been knighted ; and had jousted in the neighbourhood of Boulogne, in which he in honour of Anne of Cleves, upon her marriage | chased back the French as far as Montreuil. with Henry. The commission did not detain The following year he commanded the vanguard him long in France. He returned to England of the army of Boulogne, and finally solicited before Christmas, having acquitted himself and obtained the government of that place. It entirely to the king's satisfaction. In the next was then nearly defenceless ; the breaches unreyear, 1541, we may suppose him to have been paired, the fortifications in decay, and the enemy, occupied in his literary pursuits-perhaps in his with superior numbers, established so near as to translation of Virgil. England was then at peace be able to command the harbour, and to fire both at home and abroad, and in no other subse upon the lower town. Under such disadvanquent year of Surrey's life could his active service tages, Surrey entered on his command, and drew have allowed him leisure. In 1542 he received up and sent home a plan of alterations in the the order of the Garter, and followed his father works, which was approved of by the king, and in the expedition of that year into Scotland, ordered to be acted upon. Nor were his efforts where he acquired his first military experience. merely defensive. On one occasion he led his Amidst these early distinctions it is somewhat men into the enemy's country as far as Samermortifying to find him, about this period, twice au-Bois, which he destroyed, and returned in committed to the Fleet prison ; on one occasion safety with considerable booty. Afterwards, on account of a private quarrel, on another for hearing that the French intended to revictual eating meat in Lent, and for breaking the win- | their camp at Outreau, he compelled them to dows of the citizens of London with stones from abandon their object, pursued them as far as his cross-bow. This was a strange misdemeanour Hardilot, and was only prevented from gaining indeed, for a hero and a man of letters. His a complete victory through the want of cavalry. apology, perhaps as curious as the fact itself, But his plan for the defence of Boulogne, which, turns the action only into quixotic absurdity. | by his own extant memorial, is said to evince His motive, he said, was religious. He saw the great military skill, was marred by the issue of citizens sunk in papal corruption of manners,
one unfortunate sally. In order to prevent the and he wished to break in upon their guilty French from revictualling a fortress that menaced secrecy by a sudden chastisement, that should the safety of Boulogne, he found it necessary, remind them of Divine retribution !
with his slender forces, to risk another attack at The war with France called him into more St. Etienne. His cavalry first charged and honourable activity. In the first campaign he routed those of the French : the foot, which he joined the army under Sir John Wallop, at the commanded in person, next advanced, and the siege of Landrecy; and in the second and larger first line, consisting chiefly of gentlemen armed expedition he went as marshal of the army of with corselets, behaved gallantly, but the second which his father commanded the vanguard. line, in coming to the push of the pike, were The siege of Montreuil was allotted to the Duke seized with a sudden panic, and fled back to of Norfolk and his gallant son ; but their opera
Boulogne, in spite of all the efforts of their comtions were impeded by the want of money,
mander to rally them. Within a few months ammunition, and artillery, supplies most pro
after this affair he was recalled to England, and bably detained from reaching them by the in Hertford went out to France as the king's lieuAuence of the Earl of Hertford, who had long tenant-general. regarded both Surrey and his father with a It does not appear, however, that the loss of jealous eye. In these disastrous circumstances this action was the pretext for his recal, or the Surrey seconded the duke's efforts with zeal and direct cause of the king's vengeance, by which ability. On one expedition he was out two days he was subsequently destined to fall. If the and two nights, spread destruction among the faction of Hertford, that was intriguing against resources of the enemy, and returned to the camp him at home, ever succeeded in fretting the king's with a load of supplies, and without the loss of humour against him, by turning his misfortune a single man. In a bold attempt to storm the into a topic of blame, Henry's irritation must town he succeeded so far as to make a lodge have passed away, as we find Surrey recalled, ment in one of the gates ; but was dangerously
with promises of being replaced in his command, wounded, and owed his life to the devoted (a promise, however, which was basely falsified) bravery of his attendant Clere, who received a and again appearing at court in an honourable hurt in rescuing him, of which he died a month
station. But the event of his recal (though it after. On the report of the Dauphin of France's
does not seem to have been marked by tokens
of royal displeasure) certainly contributed in- against her husband, from whom she had been directly to his ruin, by goading his proud temper long separated, and by the still more unaccountto farther hostilities with Hertford. Surrey, on able and unnatural hatred of the Duchess of his return to England, spoke of his enemy with in- Richmond against her own brother. Surrey was dignation and menaces, and imprudently expressed arrested on the 12th of December, 1546, and his hopes of being revenged in a succeeding committed to the Tower. The depositions of reign. His words were reported, probably with witnesses against him, whose collective testimony exaggeration, to the king, and occasioned his did not substantiate even a legal offence, were being sent, for some time, as a prisoner to transmitted to the king's judges at Norwich, and Windsor. He was liberated, however, from a verdict was returned, in consequence of which thence, and again made his appearance at court, he was indicted for high treason. We are not unsuspicious of his impending ruin.
told the full particulars of his defence, but are It is difficult to trace any personal motives that only generally informed that it was acute and could impel Henry to wish for his destruction. spirited. With respect to the main accusation, He could not be jealous of his intentions to marry of his bearing the arms of the Confessor, he the Princess Mary—that fable is disproved by proved that he had the authority of the heralds the discovery of Surrey's widow having survived in so doing, and that he had worn them himself him. Nor is it likely that the king dreaded him in the king's presence, as his ancestors had worn as an enemy to the Reformation, as there is every them in the presence of former kings. Notwithreason to believe that he was a Protestant. The standing his manifest innocence, the jury was natural cruelty of Henry seems to have been but | base enough to find him guilty. The chancellor an instrument in the designing hands of Hert- pronounced sentence of death upon him ; and in ford, whose ambition, fear,and jealousy, prompted the flower of his age, in his 31st year, this noble him to seek the destruction of Norfolk and his soldier and accomplished poet was beheaded on son. His measures were unhappily aided by the Tower-hill, vindictive resentment of the Duchess of Norfolk
PRISONED IN WINDSOR, HE RECOUNTETH HIS PLEASURE THERE PASSED.
So cruel prison how could betide, alas !
The wild forest, the clothed holts with green;