Billeder på siden
PDF
ePub

CHAP, LVII.

ATTEMPTS TO ESTABLISH AN OFFICIAL INTER

COURSE BETWEEN THE SEE OF ROME AND THE
ENGLISH GOVERNMENT.

[ocr errors]

THE agency of Panzani, and his attempts to effect a friendly communication between Rome and London, appear to have been generally known by some contemporary writers :—but the only authentic information which we possess of them, is contained in the work which we have cited under the title of Panzani's Memoirs; we shall now transcribe so much of them as relate to these communications.

“ The two secretaries Windebanck and Cotting“ton, encouraged Panzani not to let fall the bu“siness of a reciprocal agent, because, by that " means, the re-union of the kingdom with the " church of Rome might come to pass. Panzani “ had written to cardinal Barberini about it, even “ at the beginning, when first it was proposed to “him by Windebanck; and the cardinal applied “ his mind to it seriously; so, in answer, he or66 dered Panzani that he should consult father Phi* lip*, what hopes there might be about the foresaid “ union of the kingdoms, and what means to culti“ vate it. Father Philip, as a wise man, and well “ acquainted with the affairs of that nation, assured, “ that every day good signs appeared, as well in “ the king, as in the ecclesiastics and laity of the kingdom, towards such an union; but that, how

* A friar; the queen's confidential chaplain.

66

*ever, it was to be looked upon as a most difficult “ bussness, by reason of the severity of the laws " against the catholics; seeing that those, who really s desired an union, durst not discover it, but rather,

through fear, took occasion to show the contrary

disposition; and the same apprehension appeared “ in the king, of his own nature most fearful : from " these things, a great inconvenience followed, to " wit, that none could make a prudent and secure

judgment of the mind of the king and his coun“ sellors; seeing them vary and waver so much. " It happened also then, when the king for his “pressing occasions of war, and such like, was

compelled, to have monies, to call a parliament, " and the lower house being full of puritans, these " were used ever to exclaim against the catholics; “nor would they consent to the king's demands,

except he showed himself cruel against the caç tholics; as also, for the same reason, all those

bishops and ministers, that were moderate and “ inclined to the union, about the time of calling a “ parliament, because they feared to lose their life " or benefices, became also cruel, or at least severe " against the catholics; and the king himself could “not annul the parliamentary laws. However, that “ the affair of the union might be much helped by “ the choosing of the two reciprocal agents, if they, « in their managing affairs, studied to give content " to the king and state.

- 6 And here, father Philip gave a wise instruction " about the qualities of an agent to be sent by the

pope to reside in London: and first of all, that

[ocr errors]

66

[ocr errors]

“ he should show himself willing to give all just “ and possible satisfaction; that he should, now " and then, take occasion to excuse the king and

officers, if they did not altogether favour the ca“ tholics, and to lay the fault on the pursuivants ; “ and to ask, with address, a remedy; that he “ should carefully inform Windebanck, of what

passed in Rome, and keep a communication with “ the agents of the crowns and princes, to have “ news, and send it, without yet giving offence to “ the said princes,-and if the news were such, as

were not a disgrace to religion, that he should “ make use of presents and regales ; that he should “ be of age about thirty-five years, to the end he « "might have a certain lively solidity, which usually “ is not had either in youth or old age; that he “ should be of a good and handsome presence, “noble and rich, and above all, of an exemplary

life, bụt without affectation; not a confident of “the jesuits, nor more addicted to the French in“terest, than to the Spaniards ; that he should “ keep his family in good order, and be rather “ liberal than otherwise; that he should speak well

French, a tongue well understood in the English “ court ; that in the first place he should take a " care to gain the good-will of the queen, with

presents of perfumes, and such like genteel gifts, " and with cheerful discourse and entertainment, “ but yet modest and chaste; and so also the ladies

of the court; that he should live altogether free " from all lasciviousness and sightness, because it

was an usual saying in England, a good life a

[ocr errors]

good religion ; and the rather, because the king

was of himself of a most modest behaviour, and " the queen no less chaste and modest, and ab“ horring from all things which gave any signs of

impurity; that, when by the help of the queen, “the counsellors were gained, it might be decreed $ in the council, that the pursuivants or informers "should not do any thing without an express and “ written order of the council; which being com

passed, the catholics would not any longer be

in fear, because as soon as any resolution should “ be taken in council against them, some counsellor

gained by her majesty, might give notice to the “said catholics, and so easily those, that were ac

cused, might fly, and avoid the diligence of the “ officers. If this point alone were established, " there would follow a kind of tacit liberty of con“ science for the catholics ; and the moderate

protestants would not fear so much to declare " themselves in favour of them; and then would “ be the proper time to act with the king by means of the bishop of Canterbury, that he would grant, " as much as could be, an express liberty of con“ science; which being granted, it was believed “that, in less than three years, almost all the

kingdom would become catholic; and then would “ be the time to call a parliament and recall the “ laws against catholics, and to re-unite again with “ the see apostolic.

“ It cannot be expressed, how much cardinal “ Barberini was pleased with these observations of “ father Philip; and he answered that it could

a

[ocr errors]

* not be denied that, as to the union, there were “ not such difficulties of great moment, but that, " when the king should seriously desire it, they “ might be overcome ; that, in the mean time his “ holiness would apply his whole mind unto it, as “ also should co-operate unto it the agent, that was

to be sent to London, in choosing of whom care " should be taken, that he were endowed with all " those ornaments of quality, and other talents, that * were desired : and that, in the interim, Panzani * should take a care to conserve the good-will of

the “ two secretaries of state, Windebanck and Cotting" ton, 'who showed a good disposition towards favouring the catholics.' * Father Philip and Panzani consulted together, which of the two secretaries was fittest to manage w the affair of an agent; because, on the one side, " Windebanck had been the first that proposed it, " and on the other, Cottington was to disburse the ac

expenses, for the maintaining one at Rome. But " because Windebanek might take it ill, if, without « his knowledge, they relied on his colleague, “ Panzani dexterously induced him to be content “ that Cottington should be made partaker of thë “ business ; but that first the queen should be ac

quainted, that she might gain the king, as she " did, and obtained of him his consent, on condi« tion that first Cottington's advice should be taken; “ wherefore the queen ordered Panzani that he « should immediately go, in her name, to Cottington, “ and acquaint him, in order, with the whole affair; " and that, in the name of her majesty, he should

[ocr errors]
« ForrigeFortsæt »