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sure of the little town which had made such an obstimate resistance; and found himself, when it was obliged to surrender, master of a place which neither recompensed the blood nor the delay that were expended in the siege. From one error Henry went on to another. He was persuaded to lay siege to Tournay, a great and rich city of Flanders, which at that time was in possession of the French. This siege, though it took up little time, yet served to retard the great object, which was the conquest of France; and Henry, hearing that the Swiss had returned home, and being elated with his trifling successes, resolved to transport his army back to England, where flattery was put to the torture to make him happy in the glory of his ridiculous expedition. A peace was concluded soon after between the two kingdoms; and Henry continued to dissipate, in more peaceful follies, those immense sums which had been amassed by his predecessor for very different purposes. The success which, during his foreign expedition, attended his arms in the north of England, was much more important and decisive. A war having been declared between the English and Scots, who ever took the opportunity to fall on when their neighbours were embroiled with France, the king of that country summoned out the whole force of his kingdom; and, having passed the Tweed with a body of fifty thousand men, ravaged those parts of Northumberland which lay along the banks of that river. But as his forces were numerous, and the country barren, he soon began to want provisions; so that many of his men deserted, and returned to their native country. In the mean time the earl of Surrey, at the head of twenty-six thousand men, approached the Scots, who were encamped on a rising ground near the hills of Cheviot. The river Till ran between the armies, and prevented an engagement; wherefore the earl of Surrey sent a herald to the Scotish camp, challenging the enemy to descend into Flodden plain, and there to try their valour on equal ground. This offer not being accepted, he made a feint, as if he intended marching towards Berwick; which putting the Scots in motion to annoy his rear, he took advantage of a great smoke caused by firing their huts, and passed the little river which had hitherto prevented the engagement. Both armies now perceiving that a combat was inevitable, they prepared for the onset with great composure and regularity. The English divided their army into two lines; lord Thomas Howard led the main body of the first line; sir Edmund Howard the right wing, and sir Marmaduke Constable the left; the earl of Surrey himself commanded the main body of the second line, assisted by lord Dacres and sir Edward Stanley to the right and the left. The Scots, on the other hand, presented three divisions to the enemy; the middle commanded by the king himself, the right by the earl of Huntley, and the left by the earls of Lenox and Argyle; a fourth division, under the earl of Bothwell, made a body of reserve. Lord Huntley began the onset, charging the division of sir Marmaduke Constable with such fury, that it was immediately thrown into confusion : but it was so seasonably supported, that the men rallied, and the battle became general. Both sides fought a long time with incredible impetuosity, until the Highlanders, being galled by the English artillery, broke in, sword in hand, upon the main body commanded by the earl of Surrey; and at the head of these James fought with the most forward of the nobility. They attacked with such velocity, that the hinder line could not advance in time to sustain them, so that a body of English intercepted their retreat. James, being thus

almost surrounded by the enemy, refused to quit the field while it was yet in his power; but, alighting from his horse, formed his little body into an orb, and in this posture fought with such desperate courage as restored the battle. The English therefore were again obliged to have recourse to their artillery and arrows, which made a terrible havock; but night separating the combatants, it was not till the day following that lord Howard perceived that he had gained a great and glorious victory. The English lost no persons of note; but the flower of the Scotish nobility fell. Ten thousand of the common men were cut off; and a body, supposed to be that of the king, was sent to London, where it remained unburied, as a sentence of excommunication still remained against him for having leagued with France against the Holy See. But upon Henry’s application, who pretended that James in the instant before his death had discovered some signs of repentance, absolution was given him, and the body was interred. However, the populace of Scotland still continued to think their king alive; and it was given out among them that he had secretly gone on a pilgrimage to Jerusalem. These successes only served to intoxicate Henry : and while his pleasure, on the one hand, engrossed his time, the preparations for repeated expeditions exhausted his treasures. As it was natural to suppose that the old ministers, who had been appointed by his father to direct him, would not readily concur in these idle projects, Henry had, for some time, discontinued asking their advice, and chiefly confided in the counsels of Thomas, afterwards cardinal Wolsey, who seemed to second him in his favourite pursuits. Wolsey was a minister who complied with all his master's inclinations, and flattered him in every scheme to which his sanguine and impetuous temper was inclined. He was the son of a private gentleman (and not of a butcher, as is commonly reported) of Ipswich. He was sent to Oxford so early, that he was a bachelor at fourteen, and was therefore called the boy bachelor. He arose by degrees, upon quitting college, from one preferment to another, till he was made rector of Lymington by the marquis of Dorset, whose children he had instructed. He had not long resided at this living, when one of the justices of the peace put him in the stocks for being drunk, and raising disturbances at a neighbouring fair. This disgrace, however, did not retard his promotion ; for he was recommended as chaplain to Henry the Seventh; and being employed by that monarch in a secret negotiation respecting his intended marriage with Margaret of Savoy, he acquitted himself to that king's satisfaction, and obtained the praise both of diligence and dexterity. That prince, having given him a commission to Maximilian, who at that time resided at Brussels, was surprised in less than three days after to see Wolsey present himself before him ; and, supposing that he had been delinquent, began to reprove his delay. Wolsey, however, surprised him with assurances that he had just returned from Brussels, and had successfully fulfilled all his majesty’s commands. His dispatch on that occasion procured him the deanry of Lincoln; and in this situation it was that he was introduced by Fox, bishop of Winchester, to the young king's notice, in hopes that he would have talents to supplant the earl of Surrey, who was favourite at that time: and, in this respect, the conjectures of Fox were not erroneous. Presently after being introduced at court, he was made a privy counsellor; and, as such, had frequent opportunities of ingratiating himself with the young king, as he appeared at once complying, submissive, and enterprising. Wolsey used every art to suit himself to the royal temper; he sang, laughed, and danced with every libertime of the court; neither his own years, which were near forty, nor his character of a clergyman, were any restraint upon him, or tended to check, by ill-timed severities, the gaiety of his companions. To such a weak and vicious monarch as Henry, qualities of this nature were highly pleasing. Wolsey was soon acknowledged as his favourite, and was intrusted with the chief administration of affairs. The people began to see with indignation the new favourite's mean condescensions to the king, and his arrogance to themselves. They had long regarded the vicious haughtiness and the unbecoming splendour of the clergy, with envy and detestation; and Wolsey’s greatness served to bring a new odium upon that body, already too much the object of the people's dislike. His character, being now placed in a more conspicuous point of light, daily began to manifest itself the more. Insatiable in his acquisitions, but still more magnificent in his expense; of extensive capacity, but . still more unbounded in enterprise; ambitious of power, but still more desirous of glory; insinuating, engaging, persuasive, and at other times lofty, elevated, and commanding; haughty to his equals, yet affable to his dependents; oppressive to the people, but liberal to his friends; more generous than grateful; he was formed to take the ascendant in every intercourse, and vain enough not to cover his real superiority. He had been advanced to the bishopric of Lincoln; but this he resigned on being promoted to the archbishopric of York. Upon the capture of Tournay, he had been preferred to the see of that place; but besides, he gained possession, at very low leases, of the revenues of Bath, Worcester, and Hereford, bishoprics filled by Italians, who were allowed to reside abroad, and who

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