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green rushes, and the walls were hurig with tapestry, as was the Friars' church, in which the ceremony was performed.
"A silver font, covered with crimson satin fringed with gold, stood in the midst of the church; and round it were arranged several gentlemen, with aprons and towels round their necks. All things being arranged, the procession set forth. It began with citizens walking two and two; then gentlemen, 'squires, and chaplains; then the aldermen and the mayor alone; and, following these, the king's council and chaplain in copes; and, lastly, barons, bishops, and earls.
"The gilt basin was carried by Henry, earl of Essex. This nobleman perished, a few years afterwards, by a fall from his horse. He was alike distinguished for his magnificence, and the part he bore in tilt and tourney. Sprung from a royal lineage, being descended from Thomas of Woodstock, youngest son of Edward the Third, his high connexion must have rendered him occasionally fearful lest they should involve him in the same fatal catastrophe with that which the duke of Buckingham had so lately suffered. But his premature death, whilst it placed him beyond the reach of caprice, left his title at the disposal of the monarch, who, much to the mortification of this illustrious family, bestowed it on his favourite, the low-bred Cromwell.
"The salt was borne by Henry, marquis of Dorset, the father of lady Jane Grey, who, after receiving the royal pardon for his share in the criminal enterprize for placing the crown on the head of his ill-fated and gentle daughter, joined the rebellion of Wyatt, and finally forfeited his life on the scaffold.
"William Courtnay, marquis of Exeter, followed, bearing the taper of virgin wax. This nobleman had the misfortune to be very nearly allied to the English throne, his mother being a daughter of Edward the Fourth. He was, at this period, highly distinguished by the king's favour, who had even declared his intention of making him heir apparent, in preference to his own sisters, and his daughter Mary. The divorce from Catherine had, indeed, by proclaiming the latter illegitimate, rendered her incapable of succeeding to the throne. But, three years afterwards, he fell a victim to the jealousy of the fickle monarch, on a charge of corresponding with his proscribed cousin, cardinal Pole; and his honours and estates were not only forfeited, but his son, though quite a child, was immured in close custody.
"The chrism, which was very rich, being made of pearl and stone, was carried by the beautiful lady Mary Howard, daughter of the duke of Norfolk. She also furnished another illustration of the remark I commenced with; for she lived not only to witness, but, by the evidence she gave on his trial, to assist in the unjust condemnation of her illustrious brother, the earl of Surry, whose talents, and whose gallantry, still adorn the annals of English history. This lady, descended from our Saxon monarchs, Henry bestowed upon his base-born son, created duke of Richmond; an insult, which, in other reigns, the Howards would have resented as it deserved.
"The infant princess, wrapped in a mantle of purple, richly furred with ermine, was carried by one of her godmothers, the dowager duchess of Norfolk. This lady was the stepgrandmother of Ann Boleyn; but the high distinction afforded, too shortly, but little cause of exultation. And equally melancholy was the termination of that closer alliance with royalty, which was formed for her, in the person of her own grand-daughter, Catherine Howard. On the discovery of this queen's ill-conduct, the aged duchess was declared guilty of misprision of treason, and, overwhelmed with disgrace, was committed to custody; but she was afterwards released, when Catherine had expiated her follies and vices on the scaffold. Nor less exempt from trial was the other godmother at the font, the dowager marchioness of Dorset. Her grand-daughter, lady Jane Grey, perished by an ignominious death. Three of her sons shared the same fate; and the fourth died, during the reign of Elizabeth, a prisoner in the Tower, in which he had been confined, for the offence of distributing a pamphlet; asserting the title of the Suffolk line to the crown.
"The marchioness of Exeter, the other godmother at the font, not only wept over the untimely end of her husband, and her only son wasting the flower of his youth in a tedious captivity; but she herself was attainted of high treason, some time afterwards, and underwent a long and arbitrary imprisonment.
"On either hand of the duchess of Norfolk, walked the dukes of Norfolk and Suffolk, the only nobles of that rank then existing in England. On every public and important occasion, both civil and military, their united names appear during the reign of Henry the Eighth; but the termination of their respective careers forms a striking contrast. The duke of Suffolk was ever regarded with the same favour, which he had gained as Charles Brandon, the jocund companion of his royal master's youthful exercises. Nor did his marriage with the king's sister, involve him in either troubles or misfortunes; and he did not live to witness those which overwhelmed his grand-daughter. He died in peace, sincerely lamented by his sovereign.
"Very different was the treatment which the duke of Norfolk received from the king. His high birth, and powerful connexions, created fears in Henry's mind, for the tranquillity and safety of his son, the virtuous Edward the Sixth. The former services of his faithful and noble servant were overlooked, and sacrificed to his present alarm. With almost his last breath he decreed the death of Norfolk. But even Henry was no longer absolute: his orders were this time disobeyed, and the duke survived him. He, however, suffered a long and tedious captivity; and lived but a short time after his tardy restoration to liberty and honour, under Mary.
"One of the infant's train-bearers, was the countess of Kent. If she were, as is probable, the widow of the second earl of that title, she must have been the daughter of the earl of