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year 1513. It is unnecessary to speak of the credibility of this narrative, which has encountered such severity from Walpole and Laing, some of whose strictures Mr. Turner and Dr. Lingard have shown to be unjust; but in its style it may be said to form a sort of epoch, especially if we suppose it to have been published not long after its composition, in our native literature. Unlike the senile laboriousness of Fabyan, it is written with manifest emulation of classical models ;-it is ornata verbis, distincta sen tentiis, such as might be expected from the friend and pupil of Erasmus, taming a reluctant language to somewhat affected graces, and anticipating with uncertain endeavours the copiousness and harmony it was one day destined to display. It has been said to be unfinished, and this would afford a presumption that it was a posthumous publication ; but the assertion does not seem well founded, the story terminating with the murder of the two princes in the Tower, beyond which there is no proof that he intended to

carry it.

Grafton himself published an abridgment of the Chronicles of England in 1562 ; and Stow, a learned and diligent tailor of London, a summary of the same in 1565. Both works are dedicated to the Earl of Leicester, whose many faults were partially redeemed by a disposition to patronise learning. Slow and Grafton are said to have been jealous of each other's credit ; there can, however, be no doubt of the former's superiority, though an unfortunate predilection for the more antient church, so often suspected in our antiquarians since the Reformation, kept him under a cloud in his lifetime, and sometimes exposed his papers to the rude hands of pursuivants and messengers. In 1569, Grafton, who was printer to the Queen, put forth “A Chronicle at large, and new History of the affairs of England, and Kings of the same, deduced from the creation of the world unto the first habitation of this island, and so by continuance unto the first year of the reign of our most dear and sovereign lady Queen Elisabeth." This Chronicle of Grafton may be divided into two parts. In the first, from the creation of the world io the accession of Henry IV., being about one-third of the whole, he follows the Polychronicon of Higden, and Fabyan's Chronicle, with occasional assistance from Malmsbury, Hoveden, and other Latin his torians of our country. Buchanan, according to Bishop Nicolson, calls him a very heedless and unskilful writer ; a character which no one is likely to dispute. It may be added, rather as illustrative of the times than of Grafton's work, that he is one of the most cautious, if not dastardly, performers that ever undertook the annals of a free nation. We can hardly hope to be believed on our word, when we assert that, in writing the reign of John, he has made no mention whatever of Magna Charla ; an omission “of the part of Hamlet,” which can scarcely be imputed to mere confusion and ig norance. The following is a more definite instance of the queen’s printer's cautiousness. At the year 1112 we read—“At this time began the Parliament in England first to be instituted and advanced for reformation and government of this realm. The manner whereof, as I have found it set forth in an old pamphlet, I intend at large to set forth in the reign of King Edward III., where and when Parliaments were yearly and orderly kept. In his preface, however, we find this noticed in the following words :“And where I have, in the thirteenth year of King Henry I., promised to place the manner and order that was first taken for the holding of the Parliament in the time of King Edward the Third, I have since that time thought meet to omit the same, and therefore I admonish the reader not to look for it." The rest of Grafton's Chronicle, from the accession of Henry IV., with the exception, of course, of the reigns of Edward VI. and Mary, is nothing more than a republication of Hall, the differences being not so great as frequently take place in successive editions of the same work; in fact, we beJieve it would be found that Grafton did not insert any one phrase or sentence, though he softened in many places the warm and zealous language of his predecessor.

A more useful, laborious, and celebrated compiler of English affairs than Grafton, was Raphael Holingshed, who, after twenty-five years employed in the task for Wolfe the printer, brought out, in 1577, his Chronicles of England, Scotland, and Ireland, in two large volumes folio. This first edition is remarkably scarce. A second, in three volumes, appeared in 1587. Of this several sheets were suppressed by order of the Privy Council, but a very few copies escaped mutilation, and the obnoxious passages have been separately printed in later times. What is remarkable is, that no very obvious motive for this interference of the council appears on the face of them. Holingshed was assisted in this vast work by several coadjutors-Harrison, Hooker (sometimes called Vowell), Stanyhurst, Thyn, and Stow. point of erudition they much exceed the preceding chroniclers ; several Latin works are inserted in verbatim translations, and some degree of critical judgment is exercised upon the early and obscure periods of history. The most useful portions a present are the description of Britain, by Harrison, in the first volume, and the annals of Elizabeth's reign, by Holingshed himself, continued by Thyn and Stow., In these, however, for obvious reasons, nothing more than ordinary facts can be expected to appear. Like Grafton, though not so indiscriminately, he transcribes Hall; yet our modern historians are apt either to quote Holingshed alone, or to refer to both as distinct and independent sources.

The “ Acts and Monuments” of John Fox, more usually called his Book of Martyrs, must have a place among the principal historical works of the sixteenth century. None certainly can be compared to it in its popularity and influence. Four editions of these bulky folios were published in the reign of Elizabeth ; the first in 1563. It may not be too much to say, that it confirmed the Reformation in England. Every parish (by order of the council, or the bishops, we forget which) was to have a copy in the church ; and every privale gentleman, who had any book but the Bible, chose that which stood next in religious esteem. Whatever be the amount of the mistakes into which the pretly common habit of assuming the truth of facts, according to an estimate previously formed of the characters of those concerned in them, may have led our worthy martyrologist, it is certain that we owe him thanks for collecting and inserting at length a great body of documents illustrative of our civil and ecclesiastical history.

In the long and, comparatively at least with former times, the learned reign of Elizabeth, no other contribution appears to have been made to the history of our own country in our own language, except a short work by Sir John Hayward, in 1599, entitled, “The first part of the Life and Reign of King Henry IV., extending to the end of the first year of his reign.” This is deemed a rhetorical performance of little value, and chiefly remarkable for the persecution it brought upon him at the hands of that jealous govern

Bacon, in his Apophthegms, relates a sally of his own wit, by which he saved the unfortunate author from his angry sovereign.

The

queen,” he says, “asked Mr. Bacon whether there were not treason contained in the book.”—“Nay, madam” he answered, “ for treason I cannot deliver my opinion that there is any, but very much felony.” The queen, apprehending it, gladly asked, “How and where ?" Mr. Bacon answered, “Because he hath stolen many of his sentences and conceits out of Cornelius Tacitus." At another time, the queen threatened to have Hayward racked, to discover the real author, whom she suspected to be disguised. Bacon advised her rather to rack his style; to shut him up with pen, ink, and paper, and let him try if he could write like it. According to Camden, the offence was taken at the dedication to the Earl of Essex, wherein he was called “ Magnus et præsenti judicio, et futuri lemporis expectatione.” Not having access to Hayward's book, we quote Camden's words in Latin. Hayward remained for a considerable time in prison.

The spirit of the Tudor government, evinced in this severity towards Sir John Hayward, as well as in the castigation of Holingshed's second edition, goes far to account for the paucity of English historical writers in the sixteenth century. Meanwhile, there was no deficiency of materials for men of learning, nor any want of interest among them for the preservation of the records of antiquity. Leland, Bale, Pills, Tanner, Archbishop Parker, among others of less note, diligently laboured in collecting relics of past times, which the devastation committed among the monasteries rendered valuable by their scarcity, if not always by their importance. The public repositories were constantly searched by lawyers, and by those who sought arrows from the quiver of ancient precedent for the recovery of their constitutional privileges. Perhaps, indeed, the multiplicily of authentic records, and the practice of relying upon them in all legal and parliamentary questions, rather tended to discourage the composition of regular history, wherein it was not so much the practice as at present to vouch the authorities on which it was founded. But the former cause had doubtless a more powerful efficacy.

Two chroniclers, of that rather humble name, as it began to be reckoned, belong to the reign of James I., Stow and Speed, both tailors. The former's Summary of the Chronicles of England, an octavo volume, has already been mentioned; it was reprinted several times, as was also an abridgment of it, in the reign of Elizabeth. An enlargement of the Summaries, under the title “ Flores Historiarum, was published in 1600. After the death of Stow, his collection of papers, which the industry of a long life had amassed, fell into the hands of Edmond Howes, who, having put them together with additions of his own, printed the whole under the name of Stow's Chronicle. The first edition is in 1615. The preceding year Speed had published “ The History of Great Britain under the Romans, Saxons, Dares, and Normans," in one volume folio. Nicolson, although he gives some praise to this book, adds, rather foolishly, “ but what could be expected from a tailor?" The imputation of appertaining to a trade so essential to civilized man, and especially to the courtiers of Elizabeth and James, is more than redeemed by Speed's diligence and learning, in which he seems inferior to none of his predecessors, except Stow, a member also of the cross-legged craft. He is, however, less agreeable than either Slow or Holingshed.

A far more able pen was employed on the same subject by Samuel Daniel, groom of the chamber to Anne of Denmark, an elegant poet, not quite unworthy to receive, as he did, the laurel from Spenser, and to transmit it to Ben Jonson. He published, in 1613 and 1616, a very well-written history of England from the Norman conquest, after an introduction for the previous period, to the death of Edward III. In this he had occasional recourse to records, used more critical judgment in sisting facts than those who had gone before him, and, if he is now superseded as an historian, ought still to be remembered in the annals of English literature for the purily and elegance of his style.

Daniel's history was continued some time afterwards by Nicholas Trussel to the death of Edward IV.; but this is said to be a very indifferent performance, and has not been republished along with Daniel in Kennet's “ Complete History.” Lord Bacon's Life of Henry VII. appeared in 1622, and proved that in this hardly trodden path of literature, we were not incapable of emulating the Italian writers in what they had made their main boast, the acuteness and depth of their political reflections. After so fine a specimen of genius, it is only to make our enumeration complete, that we mention the lives of the three first kings after the conquest, published by Sir John Hayward in 1613. Meantime Camden, for whatever reason, thought fit to adopt the Latin language in bis Annals of Elizabeth ; yel, as that important work was soon translated, it may be named, without much impropriety, in the series of English history. Bishop Godwin published also, in Latin, the Annals of Henry VIII., Edward VI., and Mary. They were translated in the ensuing reign by his son.

A few select portions of English history were allempled under Chaves I. Sir John Hayward wrote the reign of Edward VI. ; Thomas Habinglon that of Edward IV.; and George Buck anticipated the paradox of Walpole and Laing, in sustaining the dark cause of Richard III. The much more valuable Life of Henry VIII., by Lord Ilerbert of Cherbury, did not appear till 1649, a year after the author's death. Less profound, but not less judicious, and certainly more fully to be trusted in the absence of other authorilies, than Lord Bacon, he stands far above any third English hislorian who had as yet appeared, and might challenge comparison with the celebrated Lalin annalist of Elizabeth. In the reign of Charles also came to light the Life of Sir Thomas More, by his son-in-law Roper, and that of Wolsey by Cavendish ; but we cannot pretend to enumerate any more works of biography, even when they may throw light on public events.

The last and not the least renowned of the chroniclers was Sir Richard Baker, who prudently acted on the plan of not troubling the unlearned reader with references to authorities he could not estimate, or curious disquisitions on antiquity; for which, indeed, bis own residence in the Fleet prison did not particularly qualify him. Baker's Chronicle, first published in 1641, enjoyed a prelly extensive reputation for the best part of a century. It was the book of the parlour-window to the squire, the parson, and the ancient gentlewoman ; they read there the fatal bowl held out lo fair Rosamond in her secret bower by the revengeful Eleanor, the glorious apotheosis of the Countess of Salisbury's garter, the dying pangs of Jane Shore, and the rejection of the Princess Bona for the beautiful Elizabeth Woodville. A frigid inquisitiveness had not torn away the stolen zone of truth from these false Florimels of our ancient story. As Holingshed was a very bulky and expensive writer, and Speed not an interesting one, the success of Baker is not surprising. Nicolson says, his manner is new, and seems to please the rabble ; but learned men will be of a different opinion.” In fact, it is a book full of great errors in the eyes of such men; yet has probably given more pleasure, and diffused more universal knowledge, than what they would have written. It was enough for Sir Roger de Coverley; but since the Sir Rogers are extinct, it is natural that their instructors should be forgotten. After the Restoration, a continuation of Baker's Chronicle, which ended with Elizabeth's decease, was annexed to the subsequent editions by Thomas Philips, who is understood to have had some assistance from Sir Thomas Clarges, brother-in-law of General Monk, for the contemporary period. May's History of the Parliament, published in 1647, is upon a more regular and classical model than any former author had adopted; and had he completed the whole with as much moderation and coolness as we find in what is published, which, there is some reason to suspect, would not have been the case, no historian of that century would have deserved a higher reputation. We shall not mention in future either memoirs by persons concerned in public events, or particular accounts of detached periods, making one exception for Milton's History of England to the Norman Conquest, for the sake of the greatness of his name, and in some measure for the value of the work.

The struggle between liberty and prerogative, resumed, with still grealer dissent of opinion than before, about the year 1680, produced a learned controversy as to the antiquity of the Commons in Parliament, and the sources, in general, of popular privileges. Dr. Brady, a physician of Cambridge, devoted to the support of monarchical authority in its highest claims, having published, in 1684, an answer to Petyt and Åtwood, the advocates of Parliamentary rights, entitled, “ An Introduction to the Old English History,” followed this up next year with the first volume of a complete history of England; the second not appearing till 1700, and carrying down the narrative to the close of Richard II.'s reign. This work, being little else than a series ofextracts, translated from Matthew Paris, Walsingham, and others, arranged merely as annals and confined chiefly to the constitutional and Parliamentary department, can hardly be reckoned among our general histories. Tyrrell, as strenuous on the Whig as Brady was on the Tory side, thought it necessary to refute the unfair representations of the latter in five folio volumes,-" A General History of England, both Civil and Ecclesiastical, from the earliest times;” prinied from 1700 to 1704. It is said that his design was to bring it down to the revolution in 1688; a miscalculation either of his own or his readers' time, since the pretty serious achievement above mentioned conducts us only to the days of Richard II. Of a work so diffuse as to be almost equally useless to the learned and the unlearned, since it would save time to read the original writers, it is needless to say much: we have heard Tyrrell praised by a competent judge for his industry and fairness in the detail of constitutional antiquities.

We have now come down to the reign of Anne, and to the eighteenth century; and it cannot be said that any one history of England existed, to which a foreigner could be referred, or from which a citizen might learn the story of his ancestors; those which we have enumerated, being either written with little research and discrimination, or broken off at a very distant point of time. Lawrence Echard, a clergyman, attempted to remove this discredit by his own “ History of England from the time of Julius Cæsar to the death of King James I.,” published in 1706; the second and third volumes, which came out in 1718, carrying on the narrative to the revolution of 1688. Considered as to its exteni, this was the most complete history that had appeared; but Echard, though not a very bad writer, failed bolla

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