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3.15. Of palaces belonging to the prince. Chap. 15.

Of palaces belonging to the prince. Chap. 15.

Compare 1577 edition: 1 _IT lieth not in me to set down exactlie the number & names of the palaces belonging to the prince, nor to make anie description of hir graces court, sith my calling is and hath béene such, as that I haue scarselie presumed to peepe in at hir gates, much lesse then haue I aduentured to search out and know the estate of those houses, and what magnificent behauiour is to be séene within them. Yet thus much will I saie generallie of all the houses and honours perteining to hir maiestie, that they are builded either of square stone or bricke, or else of both. And thervnto although their capacitie and hugenesse be not so monstrous, as the like of di|uerse forren princes are to be seene in the maine, and new found nations of the world: yet are they so curious, neat, and commodious as any of them, both for conueiance of offices and lodgings, and excel|lencie of situation, which is not the least thing to be considered of in building. Those that were builded before the time of king Henrie the eight, reteine to these daies the shew and image of the ancient kind of workemanship vsed in this land: but such as he erec|ted after his owne deuise (for he was nothing inferi|our in this trade to Adrian the emperour and Iu|stiman the lawgiuer)King Hen. 8. not inferior to Adrian and Iustiman. doo represent another maner of paterne, which as they are supposed to excell all the rest that he found standing in this realme, so they are and shall be a perpetuall president vnto those that doo come after, to follow in their workes and buil|dings of importance. Certes masonrie did neuer better flourish in England than in his time. And al|beit that in these daies there be manie goodlie houses erected in the sundrie quarters of this Iland; yet they are rather curious to the eie like paper worke, than substantiall for continuance: whereas such as he did set vp excell in both, and therefore may iustlie be preferred farre aboue all the rest. The names of those which come now to my remembrance, and are as yet reserued to hir maiesties onelie vse at plea|sure are these: for of such as are giuen awaie I speake not, neither of those that are vtterlie decaied, as Bainards castell in London builded in the daies of the Conquerour by a noble man called William Bainard, whose wife Inga builded the priorie of litle Donemow in the daies of Henrie the first; neither of the tower roiall there also, &c: sith I sée no cause wherefore I should remember them and manie of the like, of whose verie ruines I haue no certeine knowledge. Of such I saie therfore as I erst men|tioned, we haue first of all White hall at the west end of LondonWhite hall. (which is taken for the most large & prin|cipall of all the rest) was first a lodging of the archbi|shops of Yorke, then pulled downe, begun by cardi|nall Woolseie, and finallie inlarged and finished by king Henrie the eight. By east of this standeth Dur|ham place, sometime belonging to the bishops of Durham, but conuerted also by king Henrie the eight into a palace roiall, & lodging for the prince. Of Summerset place I speake not, yet if the first be|ginner thereof (I meane the lord Edward, the lear|ned and godlie duke of Summerset) had liued, I doubt not but it should haue beene well finished and brought to a sumptuous end: but as vntimelie death tooke him from that house & from vs all, so it prooued the staie of such proceeding as was intended about it. Wherby it commeth to passe that it standeth as he left it. Neither will I remember the Tower of Lon|don, which is rather an armorie and house of muni|tion, and therevnto a place for the safekéeping of of|fendors, than a palace roiall for a king or quéene to soiourne in. Yet in times past I find that Belline held his aboad there, and therevnto extended the site of his palace in such wise, that it stretched ouer the Broken wharfe, and came further into the citie, in so much that it approched néere to Bellines gate, & as it is thought some of the ruines of his house are yet extant, howbeit patched vp and made warehouses in that tract of ground in our times.S. Iames. S. Iames some|time a nonrie, was builded also by the same prince. Hir grace hath also Oteland,Oteland. Ashridge. Hatfield. Enuéeld. Richmond. Hampton. Woodstocke. Ashridge, Hatfield, Hauering, Enuéeld, Eltham, Langleie, Richmond builded by Henrie the fift, Hampton court (begun sometime by cardinall Woolseie, and finished by hir father) and therevnto Woodstocke, erected by king EEBO page image 196 Henrie the first, in which the quéenes maiestie de|lighteth greatlie to soiourne, notwithstanding that in time past it was the place of a parcell of hir capti|uitie, when it pleased God to trie hir by affliction and calamitie.

Compare 1577 edition: 1 For strength Windlesor or Winsor is supposed to be the chéefe, [...] a castell builded in time past by king Arthur, or before him by Aruiragus, as it is thought, and repared by Edward the third, who erected also a notable college there. After him diuerse of his suc|cessours haue bestowed exceeding charges vpon the same, which notwithstanding are farre surmounted by the quéenes maiestie now liuing, who hath ap|pointed huge summes of monie to be emploied vp|on the ornature and alteration of the mould, accor|ding to the forme of building vsed in our daies, which is more for pleasure than for either profit or safegard. Such also hath béene the estimation of this place, that diuerse kings haue not onelie béene in|terred there, but also made it the chiefe house of as|semblie, and creation of the knights of the honora|ble order of the garter, than the which there is no|thing in this land more magnificent and statelie.

Compare 1577 edition: 1 Greenewich was first builded by Humfreie duke of Glocester,Gréenewich. vpon the Thames side foure miles east from London, in the time of Henrie the sixt, and cal|led Pleasance. Afterwards it was greatlie inlar|ged by king Edw. 4. garnished by king Hen. 7. and finallie made perfect by king Hen. 8. the onelie Phe|nix of his time for fine and curious masonrie.

Compare 1577 edition: 1 Not farre from this is Dartford,Dartford. and not much di|stant also from the southside of the said streame, som|time a nonnerie builded by Edward the third, but now a verie commodious palace, wherevnto it was also conuerted by K. Henrie the eight.Eltham. Eltham (as I take it) was builded by king Henrie the third, if not before. There are beside these moreouer diuerse other. But what shall I néed to take vpon me to re|peat all, and tell what houses the queenes maiestie hath? sith all is hirs, and when it pleaseth hir in the summer season to recreat hir selfe abroad, and view the estate of the countrie, and heare the complaints of hir poore commons iniuried by hir vniust officers or their substitutes, euerie noble mans house is hir palace, where shée continueth during pleasure, and till shee returne againe to some of hir owne, in which she remaineth so long as pleaseth hir.

Compare 1577 edition: 1 The court of England,Of the court. which necessarilie is holden alwaies where the prince lieth, is in these daies one of the most renowmed and magnificent courts that are to be found in Europe. For whether you regard the rich and infinit furniture of household, order of officers, or the interteinement of such strangers as dailie resort vnto the same, you shall not find manie equall therevnto, much lesse one excelling it in anie maner of wise. I might here (if I would, or had suf|ficient disposition of matter conceiued of the same) make a large discourse of such honorable ports, of such graue councellors, and noble personages, as giue their dailie attendance vpon the quéenes maie|stie there. I could in like sort set foorth a singular commendation of the vertuous beautie, or beauti|full vertues of such ladies and gentlewomen as wait vpon hir person, betweene whose amiable counte|nances and costlinesse of attire, there séemeth to be such a dailie conflict and contention, as that it is ve|rie difficult for me to gesse, whether of the twaine shall beare awaie the preheminence. This further is not to be omitted, [...] to the singular commendation of both sorts and sexes of our courtiers here in Eng|land, that there are verie few of them, which haue not the vse and skill of sundrie speaches, beside an excel|lent veine of writing before time not regarded. Would to God the rest of their liues and conuersa|tions were correspondent to these gifts! for as our common courtiers (for the most part) are the best ler|ned and indued with excellent gifts, so are manie of them the worst men when they come abroad, that a|nie man shall either heare or read of. Trulie it is a rare thing with vs now, to heare of a courtier which hath but his owne language. And to saie how many gentlewomen and ladies there are, that beside sound knowledge of the Gréeke and Latine toongs, are thereto no lesse skilfull in the Spanish, Italian, and French, or in some one of them, it resteth not in me: sith I am persuaded, that as the noble men and gen|tlemen doo surmount in this behalfe, so these come verie little or nothing at all behind them for their parts, which industrie God continue, and accomplish that which otherwise is wanting!

Compare 1577 edition: 1 Beside these things I could in like sort set downe the waies and meanes, wherby our ancient ladies of the court doo shun and auoid idlenesse, some of them exercising their fingers with the needle, other in caul|worke, diuerse in spinning of silke, some in continu|all reading either of the holie scriptures, or histories of our owne or forren nations about vs, and diuerse in writing volumes of their owne, or translating of other mens into our English and Latine toong, whilest the yoongest sort in the meane time applie their lutes, citharnes, prickesong, and all kind of mu|sike, which they vse onelie for recreation sake, when they haue leisure, and are frée from attendance vpon the quéenes maiestie, or such as they belong vnto. How manie of the eldest sort also are skilfull in surgerie and distillation of waters, beside sundrie other artificiall practises perteining to the ornature and commendations of their bodies, I might (if I listed to deale further in this behalfe) easilie declare, but I passe ouer such maner of dealing, least I should séeme to glauer, and currie fauour with some of them. Neuerthelesse this I will generallie saie of them all, that as ech of them are cuning in somthing wherby they kéepe themselues occupied in the court, so there is in maner none of them, but when they be at home, can helpe to supplie the ordinarie want of the kitchen with a number of delicat dishes of their owne deuising, wherein the Portingall is their chéefe counsellor, as some of them are most commonlie with the clearke of the kitchen, who vseth (by a tricke taken vp of late) to giue in a bréefe rehearsall of such and so manie dishes as are to come in at euerie course throughout the whole seruice in the dinner or supper while: which bill some doo call a memoriall, o|ther a billet, but some a fillet, bicause such are com|monlie hanged on the file, and kept by the ladie or gentlewoman vnto some other purpose. But whi|ther am I digressed?

Compare 1577 edition: 1 I might finallie describe the large allowances in offices, and yearelie liueries, and therevnto the great plentie of gold and siluer plate, the seuerall peeces whereof are commonlie so great and massie, and the quantitie therof so abundantlie seruing all the hous|hold, that (as I suppose) Cyniras, Cresus, and Cras|sus had not the like furniture: naie if Midas were now liuing & once againe put to his choise, I thinke he could aske no more, or rather not halfe so much as is there to be seene and vsed. But I passe ouer to make such needlesse discourses, resoluing my selfe, that euen in this also, as in all the rest, the excéeding mercie and louing kindnesse of God dooth wonder|fullie appéere towards vs, in that he hath so largelie indued vs with these his so ample benefits.

Compare 1577 edition: 1 In some great princes courts beyond the seas, & which euen for that cause are likened vnto hell by diuerse learned writers that haue spent a great part of their time in them, as Henricus Cornelius Agrip|pa, one (for example) who in his epistle Ad aulicum EEBO page image 197 dam saith thus: An non in inferno es amice, qui es in au|la, vbi daemonum habitatio est, qui illic suis artibus humana licèt effigie regnant, atque vbi scelerum schola est, & anima|tum iactura ingens, ac quicquid vspiam est perfidiae ac doli, quicquid crudelitatis & inclemẽtiae, quicquid effraenatae super|biae, & rapacis auariciae, quicquid obscenae libidinis, faedissimae impudicitiae, quicquid nefandae impietatis, & morum pessimo|rum, totum illic aceruatur cumulatissimè, vbi stupra, raptus, incestus, adulteria, principum & nobilium ludi sunt, vbi fastus & tumor, ira, liuor, faedáque cupido cum socijs suis imperauit, vbi criminum omnium procellae virtutúmque om|niũ ínenarrabile naufragium, &c. In such great princes courts (I saie) it is a world to sée what lewd behaui|our is vsed among diuerse of those that resort vnto the same, and what whoredome, swearing, ribaldrie, atheisme, dicing, carding, carowsing, drunkennesse, gluttonie, quareling, and such like inconueniences doo dailie take hold, and sometimes euen among those, in whose estates the like behauiour is least conuenient (whereby their talke is verified which say that the thing increaseth and groweth in the courts of princes sauing vertue, which in such places dooth languish and dailie vade away) all which enormities are either vtterlie expelled out of the court of Eng|land, or else so qualified by the diligent endeuour of the chiefe officers of hir graces household, that sel|dome are anie of these things apparantlie séene there, without due reprehension, and such seuere cor|rection as belongeth to those trespasses. Finallie to auoid idlenesse, and preuent sundrie transgressions, otherwise likelie to be committed and doone, such or|der is taken, that euerie office hath either a bible, or the bookes of the acts and monuments of the church of England, or both, beside some histories and chroni|cles lieng therein, for the exercise of such as come in|to the same: whereby the stranger that entereth into the court of England vpon the sudden, shall rather imagine himselfe to come into some publike schoole of the vniuersities, where manie giue eare to one that readeth, than into a princes palace, if you con|ferre the same with those of other nations. Would to God all honorable personages would take exam|ple of hir graces godlie dealing in this behalfe, and shew their conformitie vnto these hir so good begin|nings! which if they would, then should manie grie|uous offenses (wherewith God is highlie displeased) be cut off and restreined, which now doo reigne excée|dinglie, in most noble and gentlemens houses, wher|of they sée no paterne within hir graces gates.

I might speake here of the great traines and troopes of seruing men also,Traines of attendants. which attend vpon the nobilitie of England in their seuerall liueries, and with differences of cognisances on their sléeues, whereby it is knowen to whome they apperteine. I could also set downe what a goodlie sight it is to sée them muster in the court, which being filled with them dooth yéeld the contemplation of a noble va|rietie vnto the beholder, much like to the shew of the pecocks taile in the full beautie, or of some medow garnished with infinit kinds and diuersitie of plea|sant floures. But I passe ouer the rehearsall hereof to other men, who more delite in vaine amplification than I, and séeke to be more curious in these points than I professe to be.

Compare 1577 edition: 1 The discipline of firme peace also that is maintei|ned within a certeine compasse of the princes pa|lace, is such, as is nothing inferiour to that we sée dailie practised in the best gouerned holds & fortres|ses. And such is the seuere punishment of those that strike within the limits prohibited, that without all hope of mercie, benefit of clergie, or sanctuarie, they are sure to loose their right hands at a stroke, and that in verie solemne maner, the forme whereof I will set downe, and then make an end of this chapter, to deale with other matters.

Compare 1577 edition: 1 At such time therefore as the partie transgressing is conuicted by a sufficient inquest impanelled for the same purpose,Striking within the court and palace of the prince. and the time come of the execution of the sentence, the sergeant of the kings wood-yard prouideth a square blocke, which he bringeth to some appointed place, and therewithall a great beetle, sta|ple, and cords, wherewith to fasten the hand of the of|fendor vnto the said blocke, vntill the whole circum|stance of his execution be performed. The yeoman of the scullarie likewise for the time being, dooth pro|uide a great fire of coales hard by the blocke, where|in the fearing irons are to be made readie against the chiefe surgeon to the prince or his deputie shall occupie the same. Upon him also dooth the sergeant or chiefe farrour attend with those irons, whose of|fice is to deliuer them to the said surgeon when he shall be redie by searing to vse the same. The groome of the salarie for the time being or his deputie is fur|thermore appointed to be readie with vineger and cold water, and not to depart from the place vntill the arme of the offendor be bound vp and fullie dres|sed. And as these things are thus prouided, so the ser|geant surgeon is bound from time to time to be rea|die to execute his charge, and seare the stumpe, when the hand is taken from it. The sergeant of the cellar is at hand also with a cup of red wine, and likewise the chiefe officer of the pantrie with manchet bread to giue vnto the said partie after the execution doone, and the stumpe seared, as the sergeant of the ewerie is with clothes, wherein to wind and wrap vp the arme, the yeoman of the poultrie with a cocke to laie vnto it, the yeoman of the chandrie with seared cloths, and finallie the maister cooke or his deputie with a sharpe dressing knife, which he deliuereth at the place of execution to the sergeant of the larder, who dooth hold it vpright in his hand, vntill the execu|tion be performed by the publike officer appointed therevnto. And this is the maner of punishment ordeined for those that strike within the princes pa|lace, or limits of the same. Which should first haue beene executed on sir Edmund Kneuet, in the yeare 1541. But when he had made great sute to saue his right hand for the further seruice of the king in his warres, and willinglie yeelded to forgo his left, in the end the king pardoned him of both, to no small benefit of the offendor, and publication of the bounti|full nature that remained in the prince. The like pri|uilege almost is giuen to churches and churchyards, although in maner of punishment great difference doo appeere. For he that bralleth or quarelleth in either of them, is by and by suspended Abingressu ecclesiae, vn|till he be absolued: as he is also that striketh with the fist, or laieth violent hands vpon anie whome so euer. But if he happen to smite with staffe, dagger, or anie maner of weapon, & the same be sufficientlie found by the verdict of twelue men at his arrainement, beside excommunication, he is sure to loose one of his eares without all hope of release. But if he be such a one as hath beene twise condemned and execu|ted, whereby he hath now none eares, then is he mar|ked with an hot iron vpon the chéeke, and by the letter F, which is seared déepe into his slesh, he is from thencefoorth noted as a common barratour and fraie maker, and therevnto remaineth excommunicate, till by repentance he deserue to be absolued. To strike a clearke also (that is to saie) a minister, is plaine excommunication, and the offendor not to be absolued but by the prince or his especiall cõmission. Such also is the generall estate of the excõmunicate in euery respect, that he can yéeld not testimonie in a|nie matter so long as he so standeth. No bargaine or sale that he maketh is auaileable in law, neither any of his acts whatsoeuer pleadable, wherby he liueth as EEBO page image 198 an outlaw & a man altogither out of the princes pro|tection, although it be not lawfull to kill him, nor anie man otherwise outlawed, without the danger of fellonie.

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