OBSERVATIONS VPON HISTORIE.

BY W. H. Esq.

LONDON Printed by T. Cotes, for Will. Cooke, and are to be sold at his shop, neere Furnivalls-Inne gate in Holborne. 1641.

TO THE READER.

THe world must forgive me my trouble, and perhaps its owne; if I throw my selfe on censure by this publicke Edition [Page] of my private studie. These observations are history, such as surpris'd me in the reading, & wch least my memory should betray me, I committed to writing. They are sin­gular accidents, and therefore more powerfull to arrest the eye, and make the imagination stand amaz'd at the vi­cissitude of time and for­tune. And where can Phylosophie finde such [Page] sober precepts as out of history? History, that faithfull preserver of things past, that great in­structer of the present, and certaine Prophet of the future. By it wee may discover the print which former ages made, and treading that, know how to avoyd the by­wayes of errour and mis­fortune. By it wee are taught the value of hu­mane things, by contem­plation [Page] of the frailtie and ruine of which wee are elevated to the love of the Eternall. For when we reade the subversion of Empires, and looke for those great Princes who commanded them, and finde not so much dust left of them, as may serve the smallest wind to sport with, what variety of po­wer is not confounded? What authority with most famed Monarchs [Page] can secure it selfe, to the least complacence, when the proud manreades the folly of all those cunning Arts which advance to greatnesse, but never could protect from ruin? And who can looke cloudie on his owne poore fortune; when he findes that the too much favour of Princes, like the too neere rayes of the Sunne, tans them they shine up­on? Neither can dis­content [Page] finde entrance in­to that soule, who by a just valuation of what is transitory resolves for­tune hath not in her gift vvhat may ennoble, nor in her rage vvhat may debase a vvell ordered minde.

This History in­structs us to; vvhich ma­turely read by a Sober spirit, hath povver in the uncertaine Sea of frayl­ty, to settle man fixt a­gainst [Page] all the injures of nature hath depraved us to.

Farewell.

OBSERVATIONS UPON HISTORY.

Of Henry the seconds associa­tion of his eldest Sonne to the regall Throne.

MAude the Em­presse, by the weaknesse of her Sexe, lost that Crowne she [Page 2] had title to in being sole Daughter to Henry the first. The ungratefull Eng­lish opposing powre a­gainst infirmitie; and vio­lating that oath they had sworne to her succession; as if fealtie could not be obleiged to woman: and the more politick regards had authority to dispence with the more honest. Yet did her son prevaile, and Anchor'd in the Haven of that Monarchie; from which so various tempests such broken tides, and so many shelfs and rockes, [Page 3] had bar'd her. For the ve­ry Genius of this Nation by a strange dotage on the male heires, hath still bin cruell to the female, when they had a sonne able for government. Henry the se­venth, like this great Hen­ry, not disputing the title of a mother, when youth and action rais'd him to be acceptable to the Kingdome: though in that some contempt reflected on her reverend weake­nesse. So little did the ap­petite of power regulate it selfe by the streight rule [Page 4] of conscience.

But Henry the second disdain'd this disordered voting in the people; who were in danger as easily to misplace Authority, if fan­cie should mis-leade them to doate unlawfully: since in how dangerous a Do­ctrine an unwarrantable president instructs poste­ritie? And with what lit­tle difficultie the multi­tude breakes all dutie, if by an awfull hand not kept to the most severe? The libertie of such electi­ons having beene ever of [Page 5] ruinous consequence to that Nation which main­taines it.

Among many gallant sonnes to leave the King­dome no dispute about the choyce, he gave order for coronation of his el­dest, thereby to exempt the people from the trou­ble of an hereafter suf­frage. For since the vio­lent entrance of his great grand father, William the Bastard, on the govern­ment of England; passion had disorder'd succession, and no Prince but might [Page 6] challenge in his tyrannie, a descent from the first usur­per. But King Henry brought justice to the throne, and making claime to the Monarchie by a streight line, with more earnestnesse endeavour'd to continue it to posterity.

But when pollicie shoots too farre, her arrowes fall ever wide; for humane judgement hath no sight into the future, and mi­stakes when it endeavours beyond a lawful distance. The wit of man delights to finde eternitie in a mo­ment; [Page 7] and to build a la­sting edefice on a quicke­sand. For what Arts can perpetuate Monarchie, and how fraile a reede is all our wisedome to support an empire? This very cun­ning in King Henry pro­ved such folly, that his friends were enforst to pittie. For while in the pompe of this Coronati­on he seem'd even to sur­vive himselfe, and see his eldest sonne succeed: which happinesse no Prince here had for long time at­tain'd. A sudden Devill [Page 8] (for what els can we terme ambition?) was rais'd, which no exorcisme of a parents awe had powre to lay. For this new ho­nour created new passi­ons, and the sonne having equall title with the Father disdain'd to want equall greatnesse. Why should he bee made a mockery of Princes, and weare the Di­adem without the power? why should he be thought worthy the throne, and not the Scepter? why should his youth active to great attempts, be frozen [Page 9] up by the cold advice of a declining father? If it was wisdom to raise him to so eminent a degree; why wan­ted he justice to exercise it? Vnlesse his father design'd to make the most serious act of government, an in­terlude of mirth; and con­vert the Church into a stage to represent the Comedie more to the life. But though this was intended onely for a Pageant; yet did it be­hoove him in this first ap­pearing to the world, to shew himselfe farre above the scorne or sport of ei­ther [Page 10] his enemies or friends.

This was whisper'd in his eare, and the discourse pleasing the vanitie of his passion, soone wonne au­thoritie on his reason. For with how little remorse is the conscience perswaded when the least apparence of justice priviledgeth am­bition? what thoughts at first he feard to trust his heart with; by this advice he enlarged to his tongue: and from private discour­ses, he began open com­plaints; so that hee tooke [Page 11] confidence to urge his fa­ther to a resignation of his Kingdome and other Provinces, which with so eminent a fame he hither­to had govern'd. Nor was a powerfull faction wanting both in England and abroad, who though at the inward tribunall of their judgement they con­demn'd so unnaturall in­gratitude, yet outwardly did applaude the young Kings most crooked wayes: which easily are made streight to opi­nion, when they carry in [Page 12] them matter to foment hopes of innovation.

The father endeavourd by reason to calm this tem­pest, & advis'd the son not to anticipate vexation; for how smoth a brow soever Majestiepretended; the in­ward aspect must needes prove rugged. Since no command is happie, if not innocent. The least traine of wicked pollicie under­mining the firmest edifice of empire. That hereafter when the Fathers death shall prepare the passage to the sons government, [Page 13] the entry not being vio­lent might bee happie and carrying with it no cloud of sinister practises, might shine glorious. For the present, he intreated that patience which the Divine Law commanded; and all humane customes had still observed. With­all he perswaded him to tame his wild ambition: ambition; which if natu­rall, is a sickenesse de­stroyes the body it posses­ses: if infusive, a venome, ministered by the most ma­licious, against which [Page 14] there is no antidote but ruine.

That his association in­to the Kingdome, was not prejudice the present au­thority of the Father, but to confirme the greatnesse of the sonne in future. That it was high ingrati­tude to retribute disobedi­ence for so unexampled a favour.

But reason forc't by strongest arguments was to weak to prevaile against those many Castles built high in the ayre of his vaine thoughts. And see­ing [Page 15] his desires batter'd by his fathers just resolutions when he expected no re­sistance; pride perswaded him to seeke remedie a­broade, and to force what he could not intreate. Sud­denly therefore hee con­veyes himselfe and all his passions to King Lewis of France, whose daughter he had married, but never bedded: King Henry the Father carefully providing against the consummation of those Nuptialls; least his Sonne might by the alliance increase in power [Page 16] and dependencies. But this pollitick barre which divided the young Princes mature for love, created rage in the young King, disdaine in the Ladie, in Lewis discontent, but in Queene Aeleanor (Henry the fathers wife) an impious jealousie. For she who in her youth had made for­feite of her honour, and in her lust (repugnant to Christian Lawes) chose a Sarazen for her Lover; in­terpreted this restraint of the young Kings wife, to a vicious designe in the old [Page 17] King and that all the cau­tions pretended were one­ly with the more artifice and secrecie to secure the fruition of his injurious pleasures. And shee seem'd to have ground for her suspitions in the much li­berty of his former life; which seldome had in his restraint condemn'd that action dishonest, which his blood prompted was delightfull.

This calumnie wrought the old King into the peo­ples hard censure, and brought compassion to [Page 18] the young King, whose injuries seem'd of that qualitie as might autho­rize disobedience. So that not onely Lewis of France who as being a Neigh­bour King, was con­cernd to foment that discord: but even ma­ny of the subjects to the Crowne of England prepared their Armes for an unnaturall warre▪ The chiefe heads of which Re­bellion at home, were the Earles of Chester and Lei­cester: who to give their King despaire of any sud­daine [Page 19] quiet, fortified their Castles and other strong holds, with so much Art as if they design'd to per­petuate mischiefe. And what encouraged them to danger, was, beside hopes of greatnes in the change of government; confede­racie with the King of Scotland; by whose power joyn'd to that of France, they doubted not either to advance their fortunes by warre, or make an honorable retreate by peace. For when did un­quiet subjects presume to [Page 20] arme, without promise of ayde from forraigne Prin­ces? And when bad at­tempts with them proved unsuccessefull; what stran­ger but disavowed all un­der-hand darke intelli­gence? But the wonder of this mischiefe was, that Richard and Geoffrey bro­thers to the young King entred into this conspira­cie; as if the blood of Prin­ces had not flowed accor­ding to the course of Na­ture: and the eminencie of birth, had elevated them above the Lawes of filiall Dutie.

[Page 21] To wrest justice to ei­ther quarrell, both betrayd themselves: for infamie and rage shot no arrow to wound the others honour but repercussively flew backe. Even he who most apparently proved him­selfe injured, being guilty: and no man safe to fame, who had best title to de­fame his enemie. So un­happily had nature ci­mented them, that their fortunes and honours could admit no disunion: and none could triumph, but when part of him [Page 22] was ruin'd.

The Father amaz'd at the irreligious quarrell; forgot not neverthelesse, that he was to maime him­selfe if he destroy'd his e­nemie: and therefore by most loving addresses courted his Sonnes to more peacefull thoughts. He urged them to returne to dutie, with confidence that he retain'd a mercie greater than their errour. That their demand should end in no deniall, provi­ded that Reason gave it moderation; and that they [Page 23] would not chide with time, which yet enlarged their father life That from their best confederates they could expect nothing but the breach of faith: and who could bee more interessed to advance their businesse than a father? All other allies onely dissem­bling friendship to entrap their youth: and nouri­shing this discord to dis­solve all the Ligaments of our Empire, and purchase safety at the cost of our ruine.

But no perswasion could [Page 24] humble the young Kings desires, his cause now ju­stified by a generall sen­tence, and his Armie in­creast by an universall con­fluence of his confede­rates. For into conspira­cie of mischiefe, how ea­sily are men drawne, who value the justice of the quarrell at the rate of their owne profit?

All the territories be­longing to the Crowne of England were now on fire: the King of France with the unnaturall sons wasting Normandie and [Page 25] Aquitain; the King of Scot­land with the disloyall Lords destroying England. In the meanetime, the in­nocent people were offer'd a victim to both their fu­ries; and the honest labou­rer forc't to the sweate of warre, to obey the passions of those Lords, whose quarrell hee understood not. So cruell is the for­tune of the vulgar, that they can make no just account of their owne lives or states, when Prin­ces are pleas'd to follow the disorder of their rage. [Page 26] For at the expence of the common blood highest discords are maintain'd; and at their losse chiefely the ambition of the Migh­ty is purchast.

Victory at length brought the old King to the Majestie of a Father: and the young King in­clin'd to obedience, when by overthrow of the King of Scots and the English re­bells he found his faction weakned. For adversitie hath a more powerfull Oratory, than all the wit of Pietie, to perswade the [Page 27] proud from their usurped height. And seldome can we stoope to confesse our frailty, till compel'd by some accidentall weake­nesse. But the Father had his armes open, when e­ver the Sonne would throw himselfe into his embraces; never wanting affection to entertaine hu­mility. And concord was thus restored: when the Sonne perceiv'd his inabi­litie longer to continue impious; and the father found that his revenge would be most cruell to [Page 28] his owne Nature. The young King was to con­summate his marriage with the Daughter of France (for in all tragedies the amorous businesse acts a part) with an allow­ance great as the dignity he wore, but no Soveraign power. For the Father gain'd by this treatie from his Sonne, the liberty to live a King.

All discor'd by this a­greement appear'd rooted up, when indeede nothing but the branches were cut downe: For no free deli­very [Page 29] of all the prisoners ta­ken in the late battle, and fully re-invested in their greatnesse: no over liberall allowance, no solemne protestations of a Father could winne authoritie with the Sonne. New dis­gusts on the least grounds were built, by his owne unquiet spirit, and the suggestions of cunning instruments. For he wan­ted that absolute power his title challeng'd: from which he was debar'd by his fathers life and for­tune: they who had ad­herd [Page 30] heard to his disobedience expected recompence for mischeife: and hee unable to pay them for their sinnes, rewarded their hu­mour with discontent. His disease of minde was incapable of cure: for no Phificke without the mix­ture of his Fathers vitall blood could minister re­leefe; & that the old King preserved against all pra­ctise: And to a resignation of Empire, no Argument could perswade him; not willing to encoffin him­selfe in a Church soli­tude [Page 31] till death enforc't him.

At length unquiet thoughts destroy'd the young King who dis­dain'd to live and not to raigne: and since he could be onely the mockery of his owne title, he was wil­ling not to bee at all. For while with his brother Geoffrey he was in armes against his Father, and found no successe to his designes: a violent fever with a flux seiz'd, and ad­monisht him he was to dye: which he entertain'd [Page 32] with little horrour, till at last the conscience of his many crimes frighted him with apprehension of that world he was suddenly to travaile to. The racke which put his soule to the extreamest torture was the injurie hee had contriv'd against his father: which hee redeem'd by humble penitence: for the old King sent his signer, whe­ther he durst not trust his person: and assured his sonne a pardon; which gave courage to his death and made him with lesse [Page 33] trouble resolve for his last account. Having by his preposterous association into the Soveraigne title, created to his father dis­quiet and repentance, and to himselfe onely enlarg'd the shadow.

The death of Richard the first, King of England.

THe severall parts of humane life are di­stinguisht by our vices. The smoothnesse of youth is tyranniz'd by [Page 34] sensuall pleasure; the body growing to more strength ambition engageth to action: but when age inclines toward the grave: Avarice, preposterous to reason, forceth man then to reckon upon treasure, when death threatens to cancell all the bonds, and Out him from the world with no more gaietie than at his birth hee entred. Thus are we mockt by our owne sinnes; vainely pro­viding for the safetie of life, when the tombe layes claime to our wrinckles, [Page 35] and infirmitie holds be­fore our eyes Times houre-glasse, with the last graine of sand readie to fall downe. The soule bu­sying its thoughts with setting long leases, when it is suddenly to be turn'd out of its owne weak cot­tage.

Richard the first of Eng­land varied not from this common path; having stain'd his youth with lust: honour'd his maturer yeares with triumphs: but leaning now toward age, permitting Avarice to be [Page 36] night the glory of his for­mer actions. And so vain­ly did this wretched vice mis-governe him, that as wandring by the conduct of an ignis fatuus, hee fol­lowed the acquisition of an imaginary treasure. For vvhile he pursued the pu­nishment of some Rebell Lords in Poitou, vvho had assisted, contrary to allei­gance, the French Kings af­faires during the late vvarres; hee vvas inform'd that Widomer a Vicount of base Britaine, had possest himselfe of much vvealth: [Page 37] fortune unavvares to his endeavours, having leade him to a secret cave, vvherein foolish Avarice, or feare of some sudden surprise had buried vast treasures.

This severe pursute thrust the distracted Lord into severall passions, vvhich councel'd him ra­ther to foregoe his allei­gance than his fortune: and knovving hovv safe even innocence and inte­grity are against the assault of povver; hee having no such vvarrant fled into [Page 38] Limosin (a Country which owed to King Richard no obedience but what his just title and sharpe sword did force) and in the strongest towne there hee inclosed himselfe, and the purchase of that treasure which created him so many feares and so little safety. By the communication of his gold, he brought the townesmen into associati­on of his danger: for where they are interested in a regard to profit; what tye hath fealtie upon the conscience, and how little [Page 39] is a life esteem'd, when money (that supreame fe­licitie of fooles) is con­cern'd?

The King disdained thus to be opposed, threatning ruine and devastation to that place, which could so easily sell its homage; and in the heate of rage and power he assaulted it, ventring for a poore bar­gaine, the Crowne of Eng­land and his principalities in France and Ireland For if his life miscarried in the attempt; what interest could death reserve for [Page 40] him to Empire, who wan­ting children despair'd e­ven to survive in that ima­ginary vanitie? But when did passion take advice of truth? Or when powerfull Avarice inclined to re­venge; what reason could give a bound to mis­chiefe?

But the Towne resolv'd to oppose: since no con­quest could bring more desolation, than to yeeld to that passion which hath no affinitie with mercie. And while the King when violence receiv'd repulse, [Page 41] labourd by Art to master the place, an envenomed Arrow, shot by a reveng­full hand, strucke him in­to the shoulder. Which wound being drest by a rude unskilfull Surgeon, made the anguish insup­portable to any man whom rage arm'd not with a new kinde of pa­tience. For neglecting all complaint, he so seriously used his wit and courage to prosecute his designe; that within twelve dayes he brought the towne to yeeld to mercie: Where [Page 42] after narrow search, hee found the treasure hee so vainely followed, a deceit­full vision that misled him to his ruin.

This conquest finisht he began to acknowledge he was but man: for death commanded him away, and hee obeyd the sum­mons. Then hee found a­nother law to over-rule his spirits, and being to appeale from the severity of the eternall Iustice, hee laboured in himselfe to practise mercie. And in this short intervall be­tweene [Page 43] the glorious thoughts of life, and his last houre, hee left his ver­tue an example to the most religious, as his valour had beene an envie in the most ambitious. For when the Paracide, in a pride of the high mischiefe hee had committed, refused to lay fault on errour: but impi­ously aver'd hee did that great sinne to revenge his Father and two brothers slaughtered by the King: the King forgave him with so much pietie, that hee rewarded even the [Page 44] Executioner: and conju­red his servants that this unhappie man might en­joy the comfort of his re­venge, and survive a Tro­phee of so eminent a mer­cy. But this pious Testa­ment had no obedient Executors; the King no longer obey'd than he had liberty from death to command. For justice then unsheath'd her sword, and least the example of too much favour might afterward become an in­jurie, the Paracide was fleade and hang'd upon a [Page 45] gibbet: In the horrid si­lence of his punishment more effectually expres­sing his owne treason and the Kings mercie.

Before this holy Prince parted with his life, by much penitence he parted with his sins. For highest courages fall lowest when overcome by supernatu­rall grace. And how vast a progresse toward heaven can a soule so illuminated make even in a moment? For the immence bountie is not tyed to measure, and how can the quanti­ties [Page 46] of time prescribe to the Eternall?

His testament beares e­vidence to posteritie, that his minde was no way da­zel'd looking downe on death from the highest precipice of Empire. For discreetly he made distri­bution of his command and treasure: to John his brother, he bequeath'd his Kingdome, neglecting the weaker yeares of Ar­thur, and having more re­gard to the peoples safety than the right of blood: To his Nephew (though [Page 47] then Emperor, he left one part of his treasure, the o­ther to his servants; and the third to the poore, whom the wealthy never thinke their friends till death.

His bodie hee disposed too, though corruption still challengeth that lega­cie, and commanded it at Fonteverard to be layd pro­strate at his fathers feete, that even after death hee might crave him pardon whom in life hee had un­naturally offended: To Roane in testimony of his [Page 48] love, hee gave his heart; that great undaunted heart, which being more valiant than that of man, and the heavenly spirits wanting proportion for the comparison was forc't to permit it selfe to bee call'd a Lyons heart. But his entrailes he bequeath'd to Poeters: to obrey'd it to posterity with its ingra­titude, as which by many treasons was rendred un­worthy to receive any No­bler part of so great a Prince.

The battell of Varna, between Vladislaus King of Hun­gary, and Amurath the sixt King of the Turkes, 1444.

THe prevailing ver­tue of Iohn Huniades (the greatest Cap­taine of that age) by con­tinuall victory humbled the proud Monarch of the Turke so low, that peace was sued for to the Chri­stians. Which Vladislaus condescended to, impo­sing such conditions as if [Page 50] Fortune had made him Conquerour. And indeed it was sought with an ear­nestnesse, so farre beneath their former arrogance: that it was receiv'd at first either as a high contempt or dangerous stratagem. But when time assured this overture to bee no counterfeite: Vladislaus demanded that Amurath should withdraw all his Forces and Garisons out of Servia, and restore it to George the Despot: delive­ring with that Country to the long exil'd Prince his [Page 51] two sonnes, whom the Turke kept prisoners, and whose eyes in hatred to the father had beene put out. That he should ne­ver after make claime to Moldavia and Bulgaria which Countries the fate of the last warre had won to the Christians: That he should no way molest the Hungarians or invade any part of their dominions. And that hee might not onely part with territory, but even with money to purchase this peace, hee was to pay forty thou­sand [Page 52] Duckets to the King, and in recompence have Carambey his Bassa, not long before taken prisoner by Huniades restored.

This peace the most honourable that ever Christian Prince made with the Turkish Sultan, was interpreted ill and Vladislaus thought rather to have sought his owne quiet, than the glory of the Christian name. For in so high a tide of victory it could not be but a poore designe to secure his for­tunes by treatie with an [Page 53] Infidell, whom necessitie could onely make religi­ous, and whom want of power could onely pre­serve a friend.

This consideration in­cited Iulian the Popes Le­gat, and agent for other Christian Princes in this cause, to perswade Vladi­slaus to repent his former peace; and to settle his Conscience without scru­ple to prosecute the war. For what Religion could obleige him to preserve an oath of faith, with him who onely endeavour'd [Page 54] by pretence of fidelity to entrap him? Or why should a nice pietie hinder the growth of Religion? Or to what purpose should only one party be obleig'd, when experience instructed him that the Turke never swore but to tye the Christian and en­large himselfe? But now was it more than ever im­pious to have peace, when all men concur'd to ad­vance a warre so holy: where victory was an in­crease of Religion, and even to be overcome the [Page 55] highest triumph of the soule, since it assured a Martyrdome.

And beside the assi­stance of heaven, whose cause they fought, and whose souldiers they were; all polliticke regards con­cur'd to assertaine the ruine of the Ottoman Em­pyre: which not to doe upon the too tender con­science of a league, was an injurious pietie, which onely merited reproach for a reward. For Iohn Paleologus Emperour of the East, was then prepa­red [Page 56] with mighty Forces, and protested that in reli­gion to the Christian cause, hee had refused by making peace to endea­vour his owne safety. Ma­ny Princes likewise of the Turkes invited the Hunga­rian to this warre; desirous rather to abate the over­growne Empire of Amu­rath, then to continue the splendor of their Sect with danger to their state. For religion hath but a slender tye upon that soule, which is over-ruled by ambition or private [Page 57] interest. And where main­tenance of command was concern'd; what wonder if Mahometans la­bour'd the Christians, common enemies of their law into association? Moreover all the States of Italy had prepared for the present warre, sending their fleete into the Helle­spont to joyn with the Gre­cian Emperour, that the Turke on both sides assaul­ted might in neither meete with any thing but ruine.

As for Amurath himselfe; [Page 58] age and evill fortune had throwne him into de­spaire, and that confin'd him to a solitude: where in an impious pietie with certaine Monkes, coun­terfeite base coyne of the right Christian stampe, he tyred his time away, and expected an ugly death. The whole govern­ment of that usurped Em­pire, now by resignation of the Father under Maho­met but fifteene yeares of age, fitter for a Schoole and obedience to Tutors than the manage of warre [Page 59] against as able Souldiers as the most warlike age e­ver boasted.

But these regards onely look'd on pollicie; that which made the Consci­ence free from obligation to preserve this league Sa­cred, was a former made with the Princes of Chri­stendome. With whom to breake faith, was Sacri­ligious; and to maintaine it with an Infidell, sinfull and ruinous. Vnlawfull oathes being vicious in the making, but far more in the performance. Hee [Page 60] who sweares the burning of an Altar commits a crime: but his absolution comes farre easier if re­pentance make him per­jured, then if obstinacie render him sacrilegious.

Easily was the consci­ence of Vladislaus untyed from his former league: the appetite of glory and extent of Empire often­times taking as soone a­way all scruple from the soule, as the most sober resolution of Divines. For Huniades (upon whose valour and fortune the [Page 61] successe of the warre de­pended) had promise of the Kingdome of Bulgaria: and who not miraculously awed by vertue, will not endanger to bee but a bad Christian to become a powerfull Monarch? The Despot of Servia had his hopes too, of a more setled principalitie, and some ex­tent of power; and that made his Religion which never much troubled his preferment; dispence with an oath, himselfe had beene the chiefe actor to worke Vladislaus to. But [Page 62] above all Scanderbeg that miracle of true and hap­pie courage animated to this warre: promising to bring 30000. Souldiers both for strength of body and observation of Disci­pline excelling the most famed of Europe.

This joynt power, in so much security of Amurath precipitated Vladislaus in­to warre, which he mana­ged with as much good order and secrecie, as a businesse so generall could admit. For first present notice was given to the [Page 63] Italian fleete now in the Helespont, that it should no way retire upon any ru­mour of peace. Then was it mutually agreed that Scanderbeg should at an appointed day meete in Ser­via, and there both Ar­mies joyne in the common cause.

The season of the yeare might have deter'd any man, from this attempt in the depth of winter. Con­sidering whē the King was come into Bulgaria, and had numbred his men; Dracula Vayvod of Valachia [Page 64] disswaded any farther pro­gresse into that Country, Scanderbeg not yet come with his Forces, being in command of an enemie, who used often to Hauke, with a retinue more popu­lous than his Armie. But ambition and presumpti­on grounded on former good successe, deafen'd him to sober councell: so that he went on as if hea­ven had beene tyed by miracle still to come downe to his succour, Which obstinacie when Dracula perceiv'd he pre­sented [Page 65] the King with two lustie young men to bee his guides through the Country, and two swift horses to serve him for flight upon the worst of fortune: desiring his Ma­jestie since contrary to his long experience hee vio­lently was carried into so inevitable a danger, that he would accept that gift which might bee of ad­vantage if that happen'd, the very thought whereof he trembled at: But with­all he prayd that this pre­sent might prove to be gi­ven [Page 66] to vaine, whereby his prayers would appeare to have taken effect.

But no ill aboding lan­guage abated his confi­dence: and Religion which before deter'd, now gave courage: for what at first was held a resolution doubtfull to Conscience, became from dispensable to be lawfull, and in fine meritorious. So uncertaine is the judgement of man; that frequently those de­signes, which carry the de­formity of sinne at the first sight, become by long [Page 67] acquaintance of the eye, amiable, and win upon us by the apparencie of vertue. Mistake either deluding in the first encounter; or errour betraying upon a long discourse. For pra­ctise of sinne begets con­fidence, and when pu­nishment wants swiftnesse in the execution, it loseth by little and little upon the beleefe.

The noyse of this Ar­mie weaken'd Amurath out of his devout dreame; and fearing his enemie might force him to that [Page 68] solitude, hee voluntarily had undertooke, againe he entred upon the go­vernment. Which hee found running into disor­der by the weake age of Mahomet; no just title or hopefull youth creating authority to that Prince, who wants vertue to make his subjects beleeve him their superiour. Amu­rath suddenly gathered in Asia a vast power, and presently marcheth to transport it into Europe. Two parts of the world being brought together [Page 69] to decide the great quar­rell betweene these two Princes. But the Hellespont was stopt by the Popes and the Venetian Gallies; and the distracted Turke began to feare his command was to be imprisoned in the third part of the then knowne earth. To enlarge himselfe he marcht by the sea side up the Streights of Bosphorus; where hee found the Marchant ships of Genoway, ready to traf­ficke with him: who transported his Armie, selling Europe for a hun­dred [Page 70] thousand Duckets. Though some lay this crime to the Graecians, who were possest of the strong holds upon the Bosphorus, and whose faith the Turks gold corrupted so farre, that in the event every man became a Traytor to himselfe.

The Turkish Armie past the Streights, the King of Hungary began to prophe­cie danger and intreate ad­vice. Those violent Spi­rits who disdain'd the ene­mie a farre off, approa­ching now somewhat [Page 71] neere, too much over-va­lued him. Passion, like some Opticke glasse, that presents a man at one end a Pigmie, at the other a Gyant, never faithfully in­forming the understan­ding. They who with most swiftnesse had ranne thus farre, wanted not now the same motion to carry them backe. And the King though hee never fail'd in courage, was not unwil­ling to have provided for his safety, with some ha­zard of his honour. But the brave Huniades oppo­sed, [Page 72] and let him know that the number of the Turke was over-macht by the courage of the Christian; and that the Almighty, who disposeth victory, de­lighted in so just a cause to appropriate the honour of the day to his owne power. That the happie course of their attempts hitherto had instructed them, how feeble that enemie is, and how weak arm'd, who brings to the battle the inward horrour of a wicked conscience That they with whom [Page 73] now the conflict was to bee, were no other but those effoeminate slaves, who had yeelded to the Hungarians still matter of triumph.

Vladislaus was not unea­sie to be perswaded to dan­ger, and when he perceiv'd there was no retreate but must suffer the scandall of flight, hee resolv'd his life to want weight, if put in­to the scale with honour. He left therefore the order of the battle to Huniades; who to frustrate the ad­vantage, the Turkes had in [Page 74] number order'd his Army so that on side was a marsh, on the other the Carriages, and at the back a steepe hill. Thus out of danger to be encompassed by the multitude of his enemie he entertain'd the battle; and perform'd so well the part of a great Commander, that the Turkes began to despaire and the Christians to pre­sume of victory: when old Amurath seeing his soul­diers ready to flye, and by the example of former overthrowes misdoub­ting [Page 75] the present fight, pull'd out of his bosome the League of late en­ter'd into, and solemne­ly sworne by Vladislaus, and holding it in his hand with his eye fixt upon the Crucifixe (which the vo­luntary Christians bore for their ensigne) cryed out to Christ to revenge the perjurie of his people, who vvithout just cause had violated the faith they in his name had given, and to shevv himselfe a God novv his honour vvas concern'd.

[Page 76] The prosperitie that so flatter'd the Christians be­gan through the disorder of the Clergie men, and over confidence of the zealous souldier on the suddaine to change and the King engaged by too much courage among the thickest of the Ianizares vvas slaine, aud vvith him the glory of the day fell to the enemie. For his head fixt upon a Lance, be­ing presently shevved a spectacle of terrour, the Hungarians vvho should have dravvne revenge [Page 77] from so barbarous an ob­ject, lost all courage: As if Religion to God had not equally animated them, with the zeale they owed the Prince. But there is a strange kinde of more than humane vertue in the presence of a King, who as the soule quickens the body of an Armie; which if he miscarries be­comes an unactive dead lumpe. A King whose pre­sence is vitall heate to the loyall but lightning to the Rebellious.

Huniades by flight reser­ved [Page 78] himselfe to farther fortune: but Iulian perisht there lesse wounded by the enemies cymiters than the reproaches of the Christians, who obrayded him to have perswaded with breach of league; to enter into this fatall war. Which had it ended in vi­ctory the world would have said that Christ dis­dain'd to regulate successe according to the vaine in­vocation of Amurath, and that it Religion is not so ruinous to it selfe, as to command observation of [Page 79] faith with a faithlesse ene­mie, whose very law enlar­geth him to perjurie.

The losse of Constantinople of the Turke.

THe great City, Mi­stis of the Easterne World, which glo­ried in bearing the name of Constantine the Great, was now after eleven hundred yeares comman­ded by another Constantine. But age and fortune made it now the common pitty, which had beene the envie [Page 80] of all the most Noble townes of the habitable earth. For Cities like humane bodies have their diseases, and death is their fate, cruell to them as us. The vast extent of its com­mand was streightned to a small circuit; and it ap­pear'd onely its owne monument: serving the Inhabitants for an empty boast, and strangers for History. It had beene of­ten attempted by the Tur­kish power, who disdain'd the Christians even a titu­lar Empire, having forc't [Page 81] away all those large Pro­vinces, that heretofore preserv'd it formidable.

Mahomet, was now en­terd upon the Turkish go­vernment and the Neigh­bouring Christians, were comforted in the change: Amurath the father ha­ving assured them, by a long cruell Reigne, that no Prince could succeede more dangerous. More­over this new King, was by the Mother a Christian which gave them hope (who were willing to en­tertaine any) that his [Page 82] youth had receiv'd good impressions of Religion. But he soone assured the world that his blood by the mixture was growne so impure, that it rejected all thought of a Divinitie that might curbe it, when invited either by lust or ambition. And hee hath left it disputable to Poste­ritie to the tyrannie of whether passion he more slavered himselfe. But the latter was of farre worse consequence: which per­swaded him as soone to attempt the ruine of Con­stantinople, [Page 83] as he enter'd on his owne Kingdome. It being a Law enacted by the unruly pride of that family, not to beleeve their command glorious un­lesse unjust; as if Rapine and injurie were the two supports of Empire.

At first hee entertain'd friendship with the Christians: having two regards, revenge and trea­son. The King of Cara­mania had provoked his rage, in wanting patience to smile when he was in­jured: whose punishment [Page 84] was the first resolution of his government. And this dissembled friendship was the easiest way to worke the Christians to securitie; which would be a charme to make them dreame of safety. But they soone found themselves betray'd for Mahomet was no sooner releas'd from the designe of his revenge, but presently resolv'd on his ambition. Constantino­ple was prepared against, and with the more fierce desire: In regard the con­quest would not only pos­sesse [Page 85] him of the most Impe­riall Citie of the world, but raise him above the victories of his Father and Grand-father Bazazet, who in vaine had attemp­ted it. In which contenti­on Mahomet shewed that having no competitor for greatnesse among the living, he was forc't to ri­vall with the most emi­nent conquerours of the dead. And no family pro­ducing spirits worthy e­nough, he was constrain'd to contest with his own: by out-shining the glories [Page 86] of his Ancestors, to make his memory the wonder of all History, and the en­vie of posterite.

The Spring opening the wayes for an Armie hee gather'd three hundred thousand Souldiers; the least part of which were the naturall Turkes, or re­negades: Christians were the maine bulke of that fatall body, and they one­ly such whom his com­mand and tyrannie enfor­ced to the most unjust exe­cutions, but voluntaries out of Germanie, Hungary, [Page 87] and Bohemia, whom hope of prey and entertaine­ment invited to betray the honour of their Religion. Men who coveted the warres to satisfie their Avarize by Rapine, ha­ving no honest wayes to subsist: Men who be­leev'd their soules as tem­porary as their bodies, and who mockt their Saviour by carrying his name, when they fought against his cause. Men whose me­mory is onely safe in an eternall darknesse.

The poore Emperour [Page 88] Constantine, having no trea­sure and therefore no friends; sought by his Am­bassadors to the Princes of the West, to move them by Religious compassion to participate his dangers. But they had their quar­rells at home, hopes to encroach upon their Neighbours territory: Jea­losie of anothers growing power: Subjects not per­fectly regulated to obedi­ence: and other small ex­cuses begot a ruinous neg­lect of the common cause. With much solicitation [Page 89] the Pope, the King of Na­ples, and the state of Venice condiscended to furnish out thirtie Gallies in de­fence of that place, for which what Christian should not blush, not to have hazarded a life? But this assistance was no more remedie than treche­rous comfort of a Phisiti­an to a patient past all cure: For it onely serv'd to please the imagination of the wretched Empe­rour; who like a man now drowning was willing to catch at every smallest [Page 90] hold. For this ayde, which could not have beene of strength to resist such an opposition, fail'd him too.

But what title had the Graecians to complaine the neglect of strangers, who were so cruell to them­selves? In the publicke danger, every man threw the care of his safetie on his Prince, yet tax'd his want of providence; grumbled against his smal­lest impositions; and deni­ed supply when instructed in their perills: no man [Page 91] conceiving himselfe inte­ressed to support the fal­ling Empire, though cer­taine to be over-whelm'd by it. If declaration were made of Turkish Forces levied, it was presently sus­pected a state bug-beare to surprize the people with unnecessary feares. If the e­nemie took the field, the Emperour was calumnia­ted of underhand confede­racies. If upon undeniable appearence of invasion, contribution for defence was required; the over po­litickes whisper'd it no­thing [Page 92] but a State-ambush to seize unawares without Legall Order, the trea­sure of the Empire. Thus when a Kingdomes sinnes have procured an univer­sall desolation by the just sentence of the eternall Iudge: the delinquent is blinded by his vices, and becomes his owne execu­tioner.

Already vvas Mahomet, Master of one of ther ele­ments the vvater paying him tribute. For before he layd siege to the Citie he built such strengths [Page 93] upon the Streights of Bo­sphorus, that the rich tra­ding to Caffa and other Ports upon the Euxin sea was interdixted. So that the Empire acknowledg'd a maime, the Merchant disabled to furnish the Ex­chequer with the former customes. And the inso­lent Turke, grew wealthy by frequent surprize of such vessells, which to their owne repentance and ruine continued traf­fique. For what dangers threatned by a remorse­lesse enemie, and a more [Page 94] cruell sea can deterre the covetous?

The enemie drawing neere the Citie, the Empe­rour in haste made levie of what Forces hee could in so short a time and so great a danger. Sixe thou­sand Graecians he prest, in whom he hoped the sence of liberty would quicken the sence of honour: and three thousand Venetians, Genowayes, and other of Europe he entertain'd; ma­king choyce of Iustinianus an adventurer of Genoa, (who with two tall ships [Page 95] man'd with foure hun­dred Souldiers, having scowred the Seas by acci­dent, came to Constantino­ple) to be Generall of all the Forces destin'd for the last defence of that Em­pire.

And certainely while the least probabilitie of successe gave life to cou­rage, no man perform'd more acts of great directi­on and admirable resolu­tion. But when fortune absolutely forsooke the Citie; he forgot his Spi­rit; and gave proofe to [Page 96] the World, that no hu­mane vetue can long triumph over ruine, un­lesse by heaven miracu­lously supported.

For while there was any sparke glowing of the ancient Roman fire, with which the Citie first be­came the glory of the East; Iustinius made victory in­cline from the vast Turkish multitude to the defen­dants, strong onely in ho­nour of that cause they were to fight. So farre did courage despise number, that Mahomet enter'd into [Page 97] sober councell, whether the attempt might not end in losse: and the chiefe Bassa perswaded safetie in a retreate, by the example of his great pro­genenitors. But emulati­on in the inferiour Bassas urged young Mahomet to danger, to which the am­bition of a proud nature violently forced him. As if heaven had forsooke the defence of whatever place, the lust of his pride had desire to violate.

And indeede such for­tune at that time pro­sper'd [Page 98] mischiefe that the Earth appear'd aban­don'd to his tyrannie. For when the vast labour of this seige threatned the Turkes to expire in re­proach of the Assailants: the Haven keeping one side of the Citie secure from ruine, and open to releefe, in regard a strong chaine, and many great shippesbarr'd the enemies fleete all admittance. A Christian, wittie to invent highest treason against that Majestie his pro­fessision obleig'd him [Page 99] to observe, instructed the Turke upon cer­taine engines, by Land, to conveigh his Navie in­to the Port of Constantinople. Which passage opposite both to Nature and Reli­gion; extended first to the terrour, then to the over­throw of the poore defen­dants. Who perceiving the Earth made Naviga­ble, and the enemies ves­sels to saile upon dry land; became astonisht and sub­mitted their courages to the miracle of that po­wer which triumpht o're [Page 100] the Elements.

Yet in the hourely ex­pectation of death, the wretched inhabitants of the Citie, omitted not the trades of life: and the ene­mie readie even to make prey of all their substance; the Merchant busied his thoughts in continuance of his bargaines, and con­gratulated the smallest gaine: the builder rais'd up his glorious piles, as if not threatned to bee his monument; and the rich man reckon'd upon the unnaturall generation of [Page 101] his monies, as if no inso­lent theefe endanger'd the principall. For though the Emperour fearing so fierce a warre from the most formidable Prince of the earth, labour'd to make his peace with hea­ven by prayers and fasts, and all those humble acts to which ancient pietie instructs us; yet no com­manded devotion could expiate the vices of a li­cencious Citie, some fond­ly beleeving it a point of valour to dare, in so visi­ble a danger to be vicious: [Page 102] As if there were a co­wardize so abject, as that captivates the minde to sinne.

While any hope re­main'd, the Emperour dis­dain'd to give his courage over to despaire: and ex­horted the tradesman to forsake unseasonable la­bour to worke his owne defence: who fullenly made answere, that it was to no purpose to fight up­on the walls, and after­ward to starve in his house. And the Corne ma­sters, upon a generall com­plaint [Page 103] for want of bread, brought their graine in to the Emperour to be divi­ded indifferently among the people, with so averse a minde, as if they had de­sign'd it onely to supply the enemie, when at his entrance into the Towne, they were to be enroul'd his slaves. But the private wealth of the inhabitants was on no conditions to be borrowed in the gene­rall cause, every man desi­rous to admit the barba­rous insolencies of a new government; rather than [Page 104] to part with that treasure, which they were shortly for ever to forseite, and which then well order'd might have prevented so famed a desolation. But the Emperour at so sad a necessitie, for got the cere­monies of Religion, and made bold with the wealth of Churches, to pay the Christian Soul­dier, least it might be de­stinated to a more pro­phane abuse.

But no endevours could support an Empire ruin'd by the battery of an over­powerfull [Page 105] enemie, and undermin'd by its owne vices. For the Turke made frequent breaches, and gain'd even when repulst with losse: for if the slaughter of five Turkes procured the death of one Christian (considering the inequalitie of the num­ber) yet had the Empe­rour justice to complaine. For his men lost were ir­recoverable; whereas the Infidell (as Cadmus is fa­bled) seem'd to have sow­ed the dragons teeth upon any repulse, new armed [Page 106] men growing up out of the earth in his defence.

Frequent assaults on e­very side brought the Ci­tie to hope no honour but in ruine: for to servive it selfe and become the seate of blasphemie; were to resemble the punish­ment of a soul in hell, & grow more miserable than not to be: That sub­sistance far more horrid than to suffer the labourer to plough up the rubbish of the most envied Palla­ces. But this happinesse was denyed, a long con­tinuance [Page 107] in vice prepared the way to the most po­werfull impietie, that ever swayd the world. This Ci­tie like a ship overcome by tempests. yeelded at length to a Sea of enemies which enter'd through the breaches, and suncke it for ever. In one of which Iustinianus having receiv'd a wound, lost his spirit; and by flight endeavour'd a poore reprieve of a dis­graced life: for who that was interess'd in the quar­rell could out-live that siege and retaine his ho­nour?

[Page 108] Constantine the sonne of Helena, allied in name and title, but not in fortune to the first Constantine) in the throng of those who yeel­ded to the violence of the Turkish Armie, perisht; un­distinguisht among eight hundred, who pressing for life became their owne murderers. But the nar­row scrutinie of the Turke and his owne ill fate, de­nyed him even the ho­nour of being unknown: so that as his life was more eminent his death had greater ignominie. For [Page 109] having that day his impe­riall habit on; it onely serv'd to obrey'd his ruin, and sequester him for more scorne from the vul­gar. His head they pre­sently sever'd from his bo­dy, to make a common reproach of what had beene so awfull in its dia­dem. And in the crueltie of that mirth, all hope and courage of the defen­dants perisht. The Citie three dayes lay prostitute to the licence of the con­querours: who were wit­tie to invent new mis­chiefes [Page 110] to please their bar­barous wantonnesse. And well might they congra­tulate the fortunes of their victories; for never did so much treasure become a prey to so much rapine: and never did such ancient greatnesse fall to so low a slavery; honour became a contumely, former wealth serv'd onely to aggravate future poverty: and beau­tie farre more cruell than wrinckles, betray'd it selfe to the most loathed defor­mitie.

Of the Warre call'd the Com­mon-weale in opposition to Lewys the eleventh of France.

SEverall designes drew diverse Prin­ces (who had rela­tion to the Crowne of France) into league against Lewys the eleventh: and though no man endea­vor'd but his owne inte­rest, the Common weale was pretended. For no hypocrisie disguiseth with more cunning; since rebel­lion, [Page 112] is so monstrous to the eye of conscience, that it blusheth to appeare it selfe, and therefore weares a vizard which oftentimes betrayes the ignorant. Eve­ry man in taking Armes protested this warre con­trived to worke a more honest peace: as if sinne could smooth the way to vertue, and the conspira­cie of many tempests calm the Ocean. But the plot of every Prince was at the publicke cost to purchase to his broken or unquiet fortunes more profitable [Page 113] conditions: and the good natured vulgar with little trouble gave themselves liberty to be deceiv'd.

Charles the Kings bro­ther, Charles Earle of Cha­rolois, Francis Duke of Brit­taine, and Iohn Duke of Burbon, were the heads of this monster; for what o­ther title can wee give Re­bellion? The Kings bro­ther disdain'd the nar­row revenue of Berry; Cha­rolois the forc't delivery of many townes in Picardie heretofore morgaged to the house of Burgundie; [Page 114] Brittaine was commanded to desert those ancient priviledges bequeath'd him by his Ancestors; and Burbon in vaine had so­licited payment of that portion Lewys design'd him with his sister. Every inferiour Lord likewise had discontent enough to warrant to his passions the most unjust attempt. For Lewys of France had beene so ill a husband of opinion, that the world gave small reputation to his carriage: and having at his entrance to the go­vernment [Page 115] supplanted all the Officers of the Crown, and in their places planted those whom his favour had selected, the better part of France, envied or contemn'd his choyce. For the ancient dependan­cies by this remove were weakned; and they who subsisted high in Autho­ritie, imagin'd no death so wretched as this privati­on. Disgrace therefore made them resolve on ho­nour; which since no o­ther way, they design'd to buy with danger. For [Page 116] the Royall favour could smile on no man, but whom the whole world beside disdain'd as un­worthy the least regard. What misled the people to tumult, was a pretence to releeve the many im­positions which lay hea­vie on the merchants trade, and the labourers sweat. But when the silly vulgar by mutanie endea­vour'd release of pay­ments; how neere resem­bled they the Asse, which to ease her burthen cast it downe into the water? [Page 117] Forgetting that the loade was wooll which taking wet contracted weight, and that shee was a beast created to labour.

King Lewys perceiving this storme with so much violence brought upon the very morning of his government: contrived at first to oppose it; and in some small encounters shewed himselfe no way defective in courage: however his much wit with so much caution o­ver-ruled the motions of his spirit, that posterity [Page 118] hath brought his valour in­to question. But being to make head against so uni­ted a power, he found his people as slow to their So­veraignes defence, as they were rash to unlawfull Armes. Every man be­leeving his interest con­cern'd to subvert that edi­fice of power, which hee suspected to bee built on tyrannie. Which perswa­ded all degrees of men to runne into this warre, though the hazard was of the whole estate, for sup­porting the immunitie of [Page 119] the least part of every mans particular.

Lewys finding this de­fection so universall, en­ter'd into distrust of his owne forces: fearing them, who had the stron­gest tye of Dutie, to have the weakest tye of Love. And where affection Armes not the Souldier, how unsafe is the greatest Generall, in the best or­der'd Armie? For dis-affe­ction to the Commander disorders suddenly the highest actions: and how poorely he betrayes him­selfe, [Page 120] who hopes to ad­vance his designes by ter­rour? Lewys therefore flies from his Native subjects to Auxiliaries; and to teach France obedience, brings in Forces from Italy. The Duke of Millain liberally concurres to this Service, sending five hundred men at Armes and three thou­sand foote under the com­mand of Galeas his sonne. And with this power he presents his advice, That he should yeeld to any conditi­ons to divide his enemies, and be carefull still to preserve his men.

[Page 121] This Councell was of more service to Lewys his affaires, than all the Armies he could have levied in his Dutchy. For by this hee kept his Majestie entire, and refer'd nothing to the uncertainetie of fortune. He spared the effusion of his subjects blood: where­by his people were not in danger by their losses to hate that Soveraigne pow­er had chastised them. But the former part of his ad­vice was a stronger bat­tery against the enemies designe, than all the Arti­lery [Page 122] of that age could make. For to divide their Forces was to destroy them, and to bring them into jealousie of each other was to make each the o­thers executioner: By which hee was secure at the enemies cost and dan­ger, to worke his owne triumph. Then for yeel­ding to conditions, it was safer in Lewys to descend one steppe beneath Sove­raigne command, than to be enforc't to fall downe all the staires. And having both wit and courage hee [Page 123] could not doubt but occa­sion would present him with a meane to recover, if not to transcend his for­mer height.

Varietie of chances brings soone both Armies to desire to remit nothing to chance, and the warre having made both losers, peace was equally sought. And though want of vi­ctualls extreamely affli­cted the Burgonion Armie; yet did Lewys not dare to take the advantage: the rage of hunger being sometime an animation [Page 124] though for the most it dis­courages. Lewys therefore having had no great for­tune at the hazard of war; desired to change his game and try how he could play his cards in peace: where the cunning gamester is se­cure at a long sitting to be the winner. And therefore upon the first overture en­tertaines the treatie, which suddainely tooke effect; No demand of the Princes receiving the least deniall. But at the conclusion of this peace, what was at first pretended, was ne­ver [Page 125] mention'd: the peo­ple whom hope of ease of taxes had engaged to this warre, being no way re­garded. For they were the same wretched vessell still, whom every tempest moves to danger, but no calme ever secures from wracke.

To his brother he grants the Dutchy of Normandie, a proportion beyond his very hopes. To Charles Earle of Charolois hee re­stores all the Townes up­on the Some. To the Duke of Brittaine hee confirmes [Page 126] the Countie of Mountfort, with promise of money to defray the charges of his enmitie. On the Count S. Pol for having beene the great engine in moving these disorders, hee be­stowes the Office of Con­stable. To the Duke of Cala­bria he promiseth men and mony for the recovery of his Kingdome of Naples; so desirous he was at any rate to buy his absence. To the Duke of Burbon he gives assurance for the portion due to him in marriage with his sister. [Page 127] And to every great man who had beene in oppo­sition, hee contributes largely: since the event of warre might have beene uncertaine to make asure bargaine by this Treatie of peace.

Thus at Lewys his cost, every discontented Lord attain'd his aime, and tri­umpht in the fortune of his designe. And so farre was this agreement the ambition of both parties, that when the Earle of Cha­rolois allured by the plea­sure of Lewys his endea­ring [Page 128] Language, was en­gaged into his power, and the Burgonion Armie gave their Generall lost, Lewys return'd him backe with all the ceremonie of love; disdaining an advantage that might suffer the ble­mish of trechery.

Actions of so extraor­dinary a vertue strangely conduce to the fortune of a Prince: for they create him high in reputation; which keepes Soveraigne­ty entire; and beget con­fidence to his after procee­dings, which whether [Page 129] just or unjust are by that successefull. For as to ver­tuous men faith is natu­rall, so to the polliticke the practise of it is neces­sary. For how can any de­signe prove fortunate, when the contriver is held in distrust? Pyrates and Politicians, as common enemies to mankinde, ob­noxious to the selfe-same jealousie: no man embar­king his fortunes with ei­ther, but whom desper ti­on forceth, or libertie in­vites.

This accord changed [Page 130] the face of France; the brow smooth with joy and acclamations, which had bin wrinckled with so many troubled thoughts. Every man retreates to his private entertainements: and discor'd no longer ci­menting them, they divi­ded their businesse, accor­ding to particular interest. Charolois returnes home, & findes employment for those passions the ambiti­ous never want. He takes possession of the townes assign'd him, and tri­umphs in recovery of a small Country, whose un­quiet [Page 131] pride, the world wanted extent to limit. Yet did he carry still a vi­gilant eye over his great enemie, knowing that mighty spirits over-ruled by ill fortune, disdaine that humility they are forc't to. And though conveniency or necessitie bend them down to low conditions; it seldome obleigeth the cōscience longer than for­tune restraines the power.

Lewys was not well pleased with debasing Majestie to the irregular requests of them, who [Page 132] ought not to have pre­scribed their Prince. And since to oppose them all was unsafe, it was conve­nient to destroy one by one: that the revenge might bee more secure and lesse observ'd. For those wounds are most mortall that bleede in­ward; and waters which raise least noyse have the greatest depth: The shal­lowes of Princes actions sounding loudest to popu­lar judgements: but where the understanding hath the chiefest agitation, the [Page 133] greatest attempts proceed with least disturbance.

His resolution was therefore to begin his re­venge with him, who was neerest to his person; those contents being scarce heard which are spoken a farre off: but the least whisper pierceth, when the voyce, approacheth too neere the eare.

The late Duke of Nor­mandie afflicted him most, in regard nature tyed his memory to a continuall torment, that preposte­rously his younger bro­ther [Page 134] had prevail'd. For those disgraces obrey'd us most, which wee suffer where we have good title to claime respect. And be­tweene brothers the di­stance is so little, that the sence of honour growes too tender: which makes the least touch peirce the very quicke. Lewys there­fore compell'd him to an exchange of Normandie for Gaien; either by remove, to prevent his growth in Faction, or by shifting him from one command to another: in fine to [Page 135] leave him none.

But this Art was pre­sently discover'd; and the divided re-unite: bringing Lewys into the same feare and danger. Which with much dissimulation hee prevents: And by over­pleasing Charolois and Brittaine he gaines liberty to oppresse underhand his brother. Which was with lesse difficultie co­nived at; in regard Charles now made Duke of Guien, was of an easie spirit, desi­rous to master an evill for­tune, but fearefull to effect [Page 136] it with hazard. Moreover he naturally abhor'd war, either in Religion or com­passion, and the comple­ction of that time was troubled: Men onely safe who feared no danger', and such Princes onely se­cure of peace, who were not frighted at war. Then which was his ruine, any probable conditions of safety, made him re­nounce confederacie with turbulent unquiet men. And who can hope from others participation of danger, who never enter­taine [Page 137] friendship but for necessitie? Or who will adhere to his fortunes who deserts himselfe; and no longer loves a con­federate than hee is use­full?

This inconstancie in the Duke of Guien layd him open to King Lewys; who finding that his brothers life quicken'd so many disorders in France, gave way (if History be not un­just in censure) that hee should dye. But nature yeelded little hope to ef­fect the businesse, the re­medie [Page 138] therefore of the present troubles was to be sought from Art: and so well was the plot con­trived, that he sicken'd and dyed for the quiet of the Kingdome; for his death broke all those intellegen­ces had beene held so long in France: and the confe­derate Princes began to thinke on a new way of greatnesse, not by distur­bing their Neighbours Kingdome but by quie­ting their owne subjects. A greatnesse not destru­ctive to their enemie, but [Page 139] effective to themselves: Which creates a triumph more glorious because more innocent. For pow­er doth never shine un­clouded, which is main­tain'd by darke designes, or obscure dishonest Arts.

Of Charles the fifths resigna­tion of Government.

CHarles the fifth, Em­perour of Germany, singular in the pre­heminence of life, dis­dain'd [Page 140] to tread the beaten way of Princes, now de­clining to his grave. In all enterprises hee still ap­pear'd superiour to for­tune, to whose mercy he resolv'd to leave nothing in his age: least that gid­dy power loathing infir­mitie and wrinckles, might have distasted him and forgot her flattery. But his courage did rise yet higher, and vanquisht death it selfe: Death that great Tyrant which a­dornes its darke Pallace with the spoyle of Kings, [Page 141] and devests the Proud of all the gaudie circum­stance that swells their greatnesse. Death was one­ly left him now to con­quer: three parts of the world had seene the Tro­phees of his fortune, and all had submitted but death. To which since in­evitably he was doom'd to pay the common debt; yet he contrived it so, that it should be small losse to him, who had nothing now remaining but his body, and that weakned by time and sicknesse.

[Page 142] To Brussells hee sum­mon'd all the Nobilitie of the seventeene Provinces, and solemnely cancell'd that sacred obligation they owed him as their So­veraigne. To his sonne Phillip, to that purpose sent for out of England, he gave those Countries and their homage. Tis true, he wept, but they were teares of wonder; his ver­tue not onely astonishing that great assembly but even himselfe: the exam­ple was so new, it forc't him to an extraordinary [Page 143] expression, with which his courage never had beene acquainted. For Noblest spirits in such an extasie weepe as fast, as weaker soules out of foeminine softnesse.

Two moneths after he had made this essay upon his vertue, hee gave perfe­ction to the great worke, and to his sonne made transaction of his domini­on over the rest of his Kingdomes, Provinces, and Islands, both in this and the new world. Which was with greater con­course [Page 144] of Princes, as the businesse was of larger ex­tent and more value. For to this Troegi-Comedie came spectators from all the world, in regard the Scaene was so new, and the Actors the most emi­nent of that age, and per­haps as Noble as any o­ther ever gloried in. No­thing was left him now but the Empire, which soone after hee renounced sending to his brother Ferdinand King of the Ro­mans, the Imperiall Crown and Scepter, by the hands [Page 145] of William, Prince of Orenge. Who though he appear'd unwilling to this Office, loath to see his Prince bu­ried thus alive; yet with small scruple he afterward rent from his Soveraigne King Phillip a great part of the Low Countries, and indangered them all. Thus with a complement of regret the Subject of­ten appeares in just things troubled to obey: who can dispence with all duty when his owne ambition is concern'd; and justifie rebellion with pretence of [Page 146] lawfull liberty.

Charles having nothing left him now, but what lives yet, the memory of his many victories; retired to private lodgings till the wind serv'd faire to waite on him into Spaine. And soone he found in his first solitude it was but his sha­dow had made him ap­peare so mighty: For be­ing now nothing but himselfe, he tooke justly his owne height, and con­fest he was but man. The swarme of those Court­flyes who had quickned [Page 147] in the heate of favour; ap­pear'd no more, now his aspect though more cleere wanted the former vitall warmth. The wonder past, every man forsooke him who had left his glory; and as honour or profit directed them, began to beate new pathes. For what truth had in vaine heretofore labour'd to perswade, now hee ac­knowleged: when hee so suddenly perceiv'd, that the supreamest vertue, not made awfull by authority, can never keepe it selfe [Page 148] high in regard, nor at­tract the applause of men. And though his sonne King Phillip let fall words on the Anniversary of this resignation which seem'd to taxe his Father to have as soone repented as done this glorious Act of vertue; yet who can beleeve in so constant a minde so poore a frailtie? Perhaps he was a little a­mazed at the change: and the Sonne who was ena­mor'd on that Empire, his Father had resign'd inter­preted the wonder to re­pentance. [Page 149] Nor can we but imagine that Charles was somewhat astonisht at the steepe descent hee had on the suddaine made from so high a precipice: though it was with a farre other passion, then tor­tures them who are throwne headlong down by death or fortune.

When hee landed in Spaine, he kist the earth, whether he had brought his owne to Sepulture: and made his lippes doe pennance for some few trespasses his youth was [Page 150] guilty of. He acknowled­ged it the common pa­rent in that homage: and confest how high soever we are in growth, and however wide our bran­ches spread themselves; our roote is still in the earth, till age, the Axe, or some, violent tempest plucke us up: and after­terward envious time takes away even the Print that ere wee florisht there

At Burgos, where he ex­pected the suddaine pay­ment of some monies for [Page 151] discharge of his atten­dance, hee exprest a just disdaine, perceiving the Officers slow to serve not him but his necessitie. And his title was honest to that passion: for in­gratitude cannot bee for­given by a mercy lesse than heavenly, and he was yet apparrell'd with his earth. Of all the immence reve­nues of so many wealthy Kingdomes, hee had re­serv'd to his owne use, but one hundred thousand Crownes annually, for that small time hee was to [Page 152] out-live his greatnesse. And this was not payd but with trouble: for the living grudged to allow any tribute to the dead, among whom Charles was to be numbred when hee ceas'd to Raigne. But this ill nature of the world serv'd him to good pur­pose, for it comforted him that he had forsooke all commerce with that which servilely obey'd him onely, when as a Master, hee heretofore commanded it.

This hasten'd his finall [Page 153] retirement to a religious house of the order of S. Ierome; which was seated in a most wholesome ayre, that he might not co­wardly seeme to desire to dye, vvhen hee had given over to command: And in this his valour out-did all former example; that af­ter resignation of so large an Empire, he could pati­ently studdie the Arts to live, and contract his bu­sinesse to so narrovv a roome; vvho had made nine journies into Germa­nie; sixe into Spaine, seven [Page 154] into Italy, foure into France, ten into the Lovv-Countries, tvvo into Eng­land, and as many into Af­frick. But vvhen hee fixt here, his ambition out-ra­vail'd in tvvo yeares, all the labour of fiftie: for his thoughts disdaining to measure earth or Sea, vvhich Geographie can give account of; made hourely their ascent beyond the fancie of Astrologie. Whe­ther the humble onely can climbe, vvhom Pietie rackes till they acknovv­ledge themselves dust and sin.

[Page 155] Enter'd into this soli­tude, he felt a vvarre vvith­in him, of more terrour than that vvith vvhich hee had avved the World. For novv hee vvas to fight a­lone, where no confede­rate Prince came to his assistance, no subjects ten­der'd their lives with their obedience; but even his passion who should have beene his slaves, with his flesh a great part of him­selfe revolted, and conspi­red his trouble. This com­bate ended in a happie vi­ctory; humane industry [Page 154] [...] [Page 155] [...] [Page 156] strengthen'd by Divine grace triumpht over weakenesse, and inthro­ned him above his Re­bells.

Yet had hee still in his minde a soft eccho of the former noyse of warre: those houres he borrow­ed from heaven, to solace himselfe on earth, were recreated with martiall sports. Which was either to make a mockery of his heretofore most serious stratagems, and all the bu­sinesse of the warlike: or else to exercise his time in [Page 157] the Mathematickes, which had much enamor'd him from his youth. For Ian­nellus Turrianus, a great Master in that knowledge, did usually delight him with miracles of studie, making little armed men muster themselves upon the Table, and Artificially move according to the Discipline of warre:which was done so beyond ex­ample, that the superiour of the house, nothing reade in the Mysteries of that Art, suspected it for witch-craft. Neither was [Page 158] Charles himselfe unapt to worke the little wheeles of watches, and to make a clocke up, which as it strooke did warne him what vanitie it was, to rec­kon on the succeding mo­ment.

And now this great Sun grew neere his night. But desirous to out-live his funeralls hee obtain'd to see them solemniz'd be­fore his death. A sad cu­riositie, to bee a mourner to himselfe; and under­stand how short a pompe waites on the most migh­ty [Page 159] to the grave. The herse was rais'd furnisht with all the vanity of hatch­ments, which told the world, over how many wide Kingdomes his po­wer had intended: and to what a streit lodging it was now shruncke up. The Mourners assisted, and perhaps with as deepe a sorrow, as would have pierc't them, had his griefe beene serious: while hee with a sober mirth beheld the last Scaene of all his glory per­sonated; and found what [Page 160] an empty honour Princes labour for in the sweate and hazard of all their victories. For what a no comfort to the ashes of the conquerour is the tri­umphs of his life: since onely Christian vertue maintaines trafficke be­tweene earth and hea­ven.

But death disdain'd to bee made a sport to the greatest spirit of that age: for this odde pastime soone became serious, and he found he was to dye in earnest. VVhich hee per [Page 161] form'd with the like cheerefull looke; for there vvas neither honour that endeared nor beautie that enamor'd him to the vvorld: and this two yeares silence had given him a taste of heaven. He therefore without despute parted with that little of the earth, he had reserved, and which in this retire­ment he had punisht, till it grew subordinate to the soule. And though he had quitted all interest to Em­pire, yet would not hea­ven let him dye without [Page 161] his comet. For as he sic­kn'd a new star appear'd: which gain'd in bright­nesse as hee declin'd to­ward death, and poin­ting its glory on the Cloyster vanisht as he ex­pired: the poore comet unable longer to shine, when this greater starre was darkned, from whom it derived its luster.

FINIS.

Imprimatur

Tho. Wykes.

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