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Of their own selves, they are wroth with
their own selves, And thence with others; then, who lights
the faggot ? Not the full faith, no, but the lurking
doubt. Old Rome, that first made martyrs in the
Church, Trembled for her own gods, for these
were tremblingBut when did our Rome tremble? Paget.
Did she not In Henry's time and Edward's? Pole.
What, my Lord ! The Church on Peter's rock ? never ! I
have seen A pine in Italy that cast its shadow Athwart a cataract ; firm stood the pineThe cataract shook the shadow. To my
mind, The cataract typed the headlong plunge
and fall Of heresy to the pit : the pine was Rome. You see, my Lords, It was the shadow of the Church that
trembled ; Your church was but the shadow of a
church, Wanting the Papal mitre. Gardiner (muttering). Here be tropes. Pole. And tropes are good to clothe a
naked truth, And make it look more seemly. Gardiner.
Tropes again ! Pole. You are hard to please. Then
without tropes, my Lord, An overmuch severeness, I repeat, When faith is wavering makes the waverer
pass Into more settled hatred of the doctrines Of those who rule, which hatred by-and-by Involves the ruler (thus there springs to
That Centaur of a monstrous Common
weal, The traitor-heretic) then tho' some may
quail, Yet others are that dare the stake and fire, And their strong torment bravely borne,
begets An admiration and an indignation, And hot desire to imitate ; so the plague Of schism spreads; were there but three
or four Of these misleaders, yet I would not say Burn ! and we cannot burn whole towns ;
they are many, As my Lord Paget says. Gardiner. Yet my Lord CardinalPole. I am your Legate; please you
let me finish. Methinks that under our Queen’s regimen We might go softlier than with crimson
rowel And streaming lash. When Herod
Henry first Began to batter at your English Church, This was the cause, and hence the judg.
ment on her. She seethed with such adulteries, and the
lives Of many among your churchmen were so
foul That heaven wept and earth blush'd. I
would advise That we should thoroughly cleanse the
Church within Before these bitter statutes be requicken’d. So after that when she once more is seen White as the light, the spotless bride of
Christ, Like Christ himself on Tabor, possibly The Lutheran may be won to her again ; Till when, my Lords, I counsel tolerance. Gardiner. What, if a mad dog bit
your hand, my Lord,
Would you not chop the bitten finger off, Lest your whole body should madden
with the poison ? I would not, were I Queen, tolerate the
heretic, No, not an hour. The ruler of a land Is bounden by his power and place to see His people be not poison'd. Tolerate
them ! Why? do they tolerate you? Nay, many
of them Would burn-have burnt each other ;
call they not The one true faith, a loathsome idol
worship? Beware, Lord Legate, of a heavier crime Than heresy is itself ; beware, I say, Lest men accuse you of indifference To all faiths, all religion ; for you know Right well that you yourself have been
supposed Tainted with Lutheranism in Italy. Pole (angered). But you, my Lord,
beyond all supposition, In clear and open day were congruent With that vile Cranmer in the accursed lie Of good Queen Catherine's divorce—the
spring Of all those evils that have flow'd upon
Ha! what! eh? But you, my Lord, a polish'd gentleman, A bookman, flying from the heat and
tussle, You lived among your vines and oranges, In your soft Italy yonder ! You were
sent for, You were appeal'd to, but you still
preferr'd Your learned leisure. As for what I did I suffer'd and repented. You, Lord
Legate And Cardinal-Deacon, have not now to
learn That ev'n St. Peter in his time of fear Denied his Master, ay, and thrice, my
years, my Lord.
I was summon's hither But to be mock'd and baited. Speak,
friend Bonner, And tell this learned Legate he lacks zeal. The Church's evil is not as the King's, Cannot be heal'd by stroking. The mad
bite Must have the cautery-tell him--and at
once. What would'st thou do had'st thou his
power, thou That layest so long in heretic bonds with
me; Would'st thou not burn and blast them
root and branch ? Bonner. Ay, after you, my Lord. Gardiner. Nay, God's passion, before
me ! speak! Bonner. I am on fire until I see them
flame. Gardiner. Ay, the psalm-singing
weavers, cobblers, scumBut this most noble prince Plantagenet,
Our good Queen's cousin--- dallying over
But not the force made them our mightiest
Even when his brother's, nay, his noble
mother's, Head fell
Pole. Peace, madman ! Thou stirrest up a grief thou can'st not
fathom. Thou Christian Bishop, thou Lord
Chancellor of England ! no more rein upon thine
anger Than any child ! Thou mak'st me much
ashamed That I was for a moment wroth at thee. Mary. I come for counsel and ye give
me feuds, Like dogs that set to watch their master's
gate, Fall, when the thief is ev'n within the
walls To worrying one another. My Lord
Chancellor, You have an old trick of offending us; And but that you are art and part with us In purging heresy, well we might, for this Your violence and much roughness to the
Legate, Have shut you from our counsels.
Cousin Pole, You are fresh from brighter lands.
Retire with me. His Highness and myself (so you allow us) Will let you learn in peace and privacy What power this cooler sun of England
hath In breeding godless vermin. And pray
Heaven That you may see according to our sight. Come, cousin.
(Exeunt Queen and Pole, &c. Gardiner. Pole has the Plantagenet
Fine eyes—but melancholy, irresolute--
beard. But a weak mouth, an indeterminate
ha ? Bonner. Well, a weak mouth, per
chance. Gardiner. And not like thine To gorge a heretic whole, roasted or raw. Bonner. I'd do my best, my Lord;
but yet the Legate Is here as Pope and Master of the Church, And if he go not with you
Gardiner. Tut, Master Bishop, Our bashful Legate, saw'st not how he
flush'd ? Touch him upon his old heretical talk, He'll burn a diocese to prove his ortho
doxy. And let him call me truckler. In those
times, Thou knowest we had to dodge, or duck,
or die; I kept my head for use of Holy Church; And see you, we shall have to dodge
again, And let the Pope trample our rights, and
plunge His foreign fist into our island Church To plump the leaner pouch of Italy. For a time, for a time. Why? that these statutes may be put in
force, And that his fan may thoroughly purge
his floor. Bonner. So then you hold the PopeGardiner.
I hold the Pope ! What do I hold him? what do I hold the
Pope? Come, come, the morsel stuck-this
I have gulpt it down. I am wholly for
the Pope, Utterly and altogether for the Pope, The Eternal Peter of the changeless chair, Crown'd slave of slaves, and mitred king
of kings, God upon earth! what more? what would
you have? Hence, let's be gone.
He knows not where he stands, which, if
this pass, We two shall have to teach him; let 'em
look to it, Cranmer and Hooper, Ridley and Latimer, Rogers and Ferrar, for their time is come, Their hour is hard at hand, their 'dies
Iræ,' Their ‘dies Illa,' whịch will test their sect. I feel it but a duty-you will find in it Pleasure as well as duty, worthy Bonner,To test their sect. Sir, I attend the Queen To crave most humble pardon—of her
most Royal, Infallible, Papal Legate-cousin.
Enter Usher. Usher. Well that you be not gone, My Lord. The Queen, most wroth at
first with you, Is now content to grant you full forgiveness, So that you crave full pardon of the Legate. I am sent to fetch you.
Gardiner. Doth Pole yield, sir, ha ! Did you hear 'em? were you by ? Usher.
I cannot tell you, His bearing is so courtly-delicate; And yet methinks he falters: their two
Graces Do so dear-cousin and royal-cousin him, So press on him the duty which as Legate He owes himself, and with such royal
smilesGardiner. Smiles that burn men.
Bonner, it will be carried. He falters, ha? 'fore God, we change and
change; Men now are bow'd and old, the doctors
tell you, At three-score years; then if we change
at all We needs must do it quickly; it is an age Of brief life, and brief purpose, and brief
patience, As I have shown to-day. I am sorry for it If Pole be like to turn. Our old friend
Cranmer, Your more especial love, hath turn'd so
SCENE V.-WOODSTOCK. ELIZABETH, LADY IN WAITING. Lady. The colours of our Queen are
green and white, These fields are only green, they make
Lady. Ay, for an hour in May. But court is always May, buds out in
masques, Breaks into featherd merriments, and
flowers In silken pageants. Why do they keep
us here? Why still suspect your Grace ? Elizabeth.
Hard upon both. [Writes on the window with a diamond.
Much suspected, of me
Quoth Elizabeth, prisoner.