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BOO K who had filled the most respectable stations in their church, XI. and who were venerable on account of their
age, 1554. and their literature, condemned to endure torments to which
their laws did not subject even the most atrocious criminals.
This extreme rigour did not accomplish the end at which les which he had to Mary aimed. The patience and fortitude with which these
martyrs for the Reformation submitted to their sufferings,
many more in the Protestant faith, than the threats of their enraged persecutors could frighten into apostacy. The business of such as were intrusted with trying heretics multiplied continually, and appeared to be as endless as it was odious. The Queen's ablest ministers became sensible how impolitic, as well as dangerous, it was to irritate the people by the frequent spectacle of public executions, which they detested as no less unjust than cruel. Even Philip was so thoroughly convinced of her having run to an excess of rigour, that on this occasion he assumed a part to which he was little accustomed, becoming an advocate for moderation and lenity a.
BUT, notwithstanding this attempt to ingratiate himself sh jealous -f Philip.
with the English, they discovered a constant jealousy and distrust of all his intentions; and when some members, who had been gained by the court, ventured to move in the House of Commons that the nation ought to assist the Emperor, the Queen's father-in-law, in his war against France, the proposal was rejected with general dissatisfaction. A motion which was made, that the parliament should give its consent that Philip might be publicly crowned as the Queen's husband, met with such cold reception, that it was instantly withdrawn b.
heFrench The King of France had observed the progress of the
alarm a' at the Emperor's negociation in England with much uneasiness. atch beyeen Phi. a Godwin's Annals of Q. Mary ap. Kennet, v. ii. p. 329. Burnet's Hist. and
of Reform. ii. 298. 305. Iary.
b Carte's Hist. of England, iii. 314.
The great accession of territories as well as reputation which BOOK his enemy would acquire by the marriage of his son with the Queen of such a powerful kingdom, was obvious and
1554. formidable. He easily foresaw that the English, notwithstanding all their fears and precautions, would be soon drawn in to take part in the quarrels on the continent, and be compelled to act in subserviency to the Emperor's ambitious schemes. For this reason, Henry had given it in charge of his ambassador at the court of London, to employ all his address in order to defeat or retard the treaty of marriage ; and as there was not, at that time, any Prince of the blood in France, whom he could propose to the Queen as a husband, he instructed him to co-operate with such of the English as wished their sovereign to marry one of her own subjects. But the Queen's ardour and precipitation in closing with the first overtures in favour of Philip, having rendered all his endeavours ineffectual, Henry was so far from thinking it prudent to give any aid to the English malcontents, though earnestly solicited by Wyat and their other leaders, who tempted him to take them under his protection, by offers of great advantage to France, that he commanded his ambassador to congratulate the Queen in the warmest terms upon the suppression of the insurrection.
NOTWITHSTANDING these external professions, Henry His prepadreaded so much the consequence of this alliance, which rations for more than compensated for all the Emperor had lost in campaign. . Germany, that he determined to carry on his military operations, both in the Low-Countries and in Italy, with extraordinary vigour, in order that he might compel Charles to accept of an equitable peace, before his daughter-in-law could surmount the aversion of her subjects to a war on the continent, and prevail on them to assist the Emperor either with money or troops. For this
For this purpose he exerted himself to the utmost in order to have a numerous army early assembled on the frontiers of the Netherlands, and while one part of it laid waste the open country of Artois, the main body under the Constable Montmorency, advanced towards the provinces of Liege and Hainault by the forest of Ardennes.
The campaign was opened with the siege of MariemXI.
burgh, a town which the Queen of Hungary, the governess
of the Low-Countries, had fortified at great expense ; but, 1554. The pro.. being destitute of a sufficient garrison, it surrendered in six gress of his
days. Henry, elated with this success, put himself at the June 28.
head of his army, and investing Bouvines, took it by assault, after a short resistance. With equal facility he became
master of Dinant; and then turning to the left, bent his The empe- march towards the province of Artois. The large sums ror little able to ob- which the Emperor had remitted into England had so exstruct it. hausted his treasury, as to render his preparations at this
juncture slower and more dilatory than usual. He had no body of troops to make head against the French at their first entrance into his territories; and though he drew together all the forces in the country in the utmost hurry, and gave the command of them to Emanuel Philibert of Savoy, they were in no condition to face an enemy so far superior in number. The Prince of Savoy, however, by his activity and good conduct, made up for his want of troops. By watching all the motions of the French at a distance, and by choosing his own posts with skill, he put it out of their power either to form any siege of consequence, or to attack him. Want of subsistence soon obliged them to fall back towards their own frontiers, after having burnt all the open towns, and having plundered the country through which they marched with a cruelty and licence more becoming a body of light troops than a royal army led by a great monarch.
TheFrench But Henry, that he might not dismiss his army without invest Ren- attempting some conquest adequate to the great preparations,
as well as sanguine hopes, with which he had opened the campaign, invested Renti, a place deemed in that age of great importance, as, by its situation on the confines of Artois and the Boulonnois, it covered the former province, and protected the parties which made incursions into the latter. The town, which was strongly fortified and provided with a numerous garrison, made a gallant defence; but being warmly pressed by a powerful army, it must soon have yielded. The Emperor, who at that time enjoyed a short interval of ease from the gout, was so solicitous to save it,
that, although he could bear no other motion but that of a B O O K litter, he instantly put himself at the head of his army, which having received several reinforcements was now strong enough to approach the enemy. The French were eager to decide the fate of Renti by a battle, and expected it from the Emperor's arrival in his camp; but Charles avoided a general action with great industry, and as he had nothing in view but to save the town, he hoped to accomplish that, without exposing himself to the consequences of such a dangerous and doubtful event.
NOTWITHSTANDING all his precautions, a dispute, about An action
between a post which both armies endeavoured to seize, brought on an engagement which proved almost general. The Duke of armies. Guise, who commanded the wing of the French which stood Aug. 13. the brunt of the combat, displayed valour and conduct worthy of the defender of Metz; the Imperialists, after an obstinate struggle, were repulsed; the French remained masters of the post in dispute ; and if the Constable, either from his natural caution and slowness, or from unwillingness to support a rival whom he hated, had not delayed bringing up the main body to second the impression which Guise had made, the rout of the enemy must have been complete. The Emperor notwithstanding the loss which he had sustained, continued in the same camp; and the French being straitened for provisions, and finding it impossible to carry on the siege in the face of an hostile army, quitted their intrenchments. They retired openly, courting the enemy to approach, rather than shunning an engagement.
BUT Charles having gained his end, suffered them to The Impemarch off unmolested. As soon as his troops entered their rialists inown country, Henry threw garrisons into the frontier towns, cardy. and dismissed the rest of the army. This encouraged the Imperialists to push forward with a considerable body of troops into Picardy, and by laying waste the country with fire and sword, they endeavoured to revenge themselves for the ravages which the French had committed in Hainault and Artois But, as they were not able to reduce any place
c Thuận. 460, &c. Hargi Ann. Brab. 674.
BO O K of importance, they gained nothing more than the enemy
had done by this cruel and inglorious method of carrying on thc war.
Affairs of The arms of France were still more unsuccessful in Italy. lialy.
The footing which the French had acquired in Siena, occasioned much uneasiness to Cosmo di Medici, the most sagacious and enterprising of all the Italian Princes. He dreaded the neighbourhood of a powerful people, to whom all who favoured the ancient republican government in Florence would have recourse, as to their natural protectors,
against that absolute authority which the Emperor had enaCosmo di bled him to usurp; he knew how odious he was to the French, Medici's
on account of his attachment to the Imperial party, and he with re
foresaw that, if they were permitted to gather strength in gard to Si- Siena, Tuscany would soon feel the effects of their resentnient. For these reasons,
he wished with the utmost solicitude for the expulsion of the French out of the Sienese, before they had time to establish themselves thoroughly in the country, or to receive such reinforcements from France as would render it dangerous to attack them. As this, however, was properly the Emperor's business, who was called by his interest as well as honour to dislodge those formidable intruders into the heart of his dominions, Cosmo laboured to throw the whole burden of the enterprise on him; and on that account had given no assistance, during the former campaign, but by advancing some small sums of money towards the payment of the Imperial troops.
But as the defence of the Netherlands engrossed all the ciates with Emperor's attention, and his remittances into England had
drained his treasury, it was obvious that his operations in Italy would be extremely feeble; and Cosmo plainly perceived, that if he himself did not take part openly in the war, and act with vigour, the French would scarcely meet with any annoyance. As his situation rendered this resolution necessary and unavoidable, his next care was to execute it in such a manner, that he might derive from it some other advantage, beside that of driving the French out of his neighbourhood. With this view, he dispatched an envoy