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influence of heat and cold. In the living
subject marrow and bone remain constantly
at the same temperature. An imitation of
them in water and iron would be ill-fitted for
enduring great alternations of heat and cold.



DURING the last reign, the preaching of
Wickliffe against the pride and cunning of
the Pope and all his men, had made a great
noise in England. Whether the new King
wished to be in favour with the priests, or
whether he hoped, by pretending to be very
religious, to cheat Heaven itself into the belief
that he was not an usurper, I don't know.
Both suppositions are likely enough. It is
certain that he began his reign by making a
strong show against the followers of Wickliffe,
who were called Lollards, or heretics
although his father, John of Gaunt, had been
of that way of thinking, as he himself had
been more than suspected of being. It is
no less certain that he first established in
England the detestable and atrocious custom,
brought from abroad, of burning those people
as a punishment for their opinions. It was
the importation into England of one of the
practices of what was called the Holy Inquisition:
which was the most unholy and the
most infamous tribunal that ever disgraced
mankind, and made men more like demons
than followers of Our Saviour.

No real right to the crown, as you know, was
in this King. Edward Mortimer, the young
Earl of Marchwho was only eight or nine
years old, and who was descended from the
Duke of Clarence, the elder brother of
Henry's fatherwas, by succession, the real
heir to the throne. However, he got his son
declared Prince of Wales; and, obtaining
possession of the young Earl of March and
his little brother, kept them in confinement
(but not severely) in Windsor Castle. He
then required the Parliament to decide what
was to be done with the deposed King, who
was quiet enough, and who only said that
he hoped his cousin Henry would be "a good
lord" to him. The Parliament replied that
they would recommend his being kept in some
secret place where the people could not
resort, and where his friends should not be
admitted to see him. Henry accordingly
passed this sentence upon him, and it now
began to be pretty clear to the nation that
Richard the Second would not live very long.

It was a noisy Parliament, as it was an
unprincipled one, and the Lords quarrelled so
violently among themselves as to which of
them had been loyal and which disloyal, and
which consistent and which inconsistent, that
forty gauntlets are said to have been thrown
upon the floor at one time as challenges to
as many battles: the truth being that they
were all false and base together, and had
been, at one time with the old King, and at
another time with the new one, and seldom
true for any length of time to any one. They
soon began to plot again. A conspiracy was
formed to invite the King to a tournament at
Oxford, and then to take him by surprise and
kill him. This murderous enterprise, which
was agreed upon at secret meetings in the
house of the Abbot of Westminster, was
betrayed by the Earl of Rutlandone of the
conspirators. The King, instead of going to
the tournament or staying at Windsor (where
the conspirators suddenly went, on finding
themselves discovered with the hope of seizing
him), retired to London, proclaimed them all
traitors, and advanced upon them with a
great force. They retired into the west of
England, proclaiming Richard King; but, the
people rose against them, and they were all
slain. Their treason hastened the death of
the deposed monarch. Whether he was killed
by hired assassins, or whether he was starved
to death, or whether he refused food on hearing
of his brothers being killed (who were in
that plot) is very doubtful. He met his death
somehow; and his body was publicly shown
at St. Paul's Cathedral with only the lower
part of the face uncovered. I can scarcely
doubt that he was killed by the King's orders.

The French wife of the miserable Richard
was now only ten years old; and, when her
father, Charles of France, heard of her
misfortunes and of her lonely condition in
England, he went mad: as he had several times
done before, during the last five or six years.
The French Dukes of Burgundy and Bourbon
took up the poor girl's cause, without caring
much about it, but on the chance of getting
something out of England. The people of
Bourdeaux, who had a sort of superstitious
attachment to the memory of Richard, because
he was born there, swore by the Lord that he
had been the best man in all his kingdom
which was going rather farand promised to
do great things against the English. Nevertheless,
when they came to consider that they,
and the whole people of France, were ruined
by their own nobles, and that the English
rule was much the better of the two, they
cooled down again; and the two dukes,
although they were very great men, could do
nothing without them. Then, began negociations
between France and England for the
sending home to Paris of the poor little
Queen with all her jewels and her fortune of
two hundred thousand francs in gold. The
King was quite willing to restore the young
lady, and even the jewels; but he said he
really could not part with the money. So,
at last she was safely deposited at Paris without
her fortune, and then the Duke of Burgundy
(who was cousin to the French King)
began to quarrel with the Duke of Orleans
(who was brother to the French King) about
the whole matter; and those two dukes made
France even more wretched than ever.

As the idea of conquering Scotland was still
popular at home, the King marched to the