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beginning of their reigns do use to grace themselves, or at least express themselves gracious in the eyes of their people. And this was for the general the state and constitution of men's minds upon this change; the actions themselves passed in this


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VOL. 3.




[Written about the year 1580.]

In the consideration of the present state of Christendom, depending on the inclinations and qualities of the princes, governors of the same, first the person of the pope, acknowledged for supreme of the princes catholic, may be brought forth.

Gregory XIII. of the age of seventy years, by surname Boncompagno, born in Bolonia of the meanest state of the people, his father a shoemaker by occupation; of no great learning nor understanding, busy rather in practice, than desirous of wars, and that rather to further the advancement of his son and his house, a respect highly regarded of all the popes, than of any inclination of nature, the which, yet in these years, abhorreth not his secret pleasures. Howbeit, two things especially have set so sharp edge to him, whereby he doth bend himself so vehemently against religion. The one is a mere necessity, the other the solicitation of the King of Spain. For, if we consider duly the estate of the present time, we shall find that he is not so much carried with the desire to suppress our religion, as driven with the fear of the downfal of his own, if in time it be not upheld and restored.

The reasons be these: he seeth the King of Spain already in years, and worn with labour and troubles, that there is little hope in him of long life. And he failing, there were likely to ensue great alterations of state in all his dominions, the which should be joined with the like in religion, especially in this divided time, and in Spain, already so forward, as the fury of the inquisition can scarce keep in.

In France, the state of that church seemeth to depend on the sole life of the king now reigning, being of a weak constitution, full of infirmities, not likely to have long life, and quite out of hope of any issue. Of the Duke of Anjou he doth not assure himself; besides the opinion conceived of the weakness of the complexion of all that race, giving neither hope of length of life nor of children. And the next to the succession make already profession of the reformed religion, besides the increase thereof daily in France; England and Scotland are already, God be thanked, quite reformed, with the better part of Germany. And because the queen's majesty hath that reputation to be the defender of the true religion and faith; against her majesty, as the head of the faithful, is the drift of all their mischiefs.

The King of Spain having erected, in his conceit, à monarchy, wherein seeking reputation in the protection of religion, this conjunction with the pope is as necessary to him for the furtherance of his purposes, as to the pope behoveful for the advancing of his house, and for his authority; the King of


Spain having already bestowed on the pope's son, degree of title and of office, with great revenues. encourage the pope herein, being head of the church, they set before him the analogy of the name Gregory, saying, that we were first under a Gregory brought to the faith, and by a Gregory are again to be reduced to the obedience of Rome.

A prophecy likewise is found out that foretelleth, "the dragon sitting in the chair of Peter, "great things should be brought to pass."

Thus is the King of France solicited against those of the religion in France; the emperor against those in his dominions; divisions set in Germany; the Low Countries miserably oppressed; and daily attempts against her majesty, both by force and practice; hereto serve the seminaries, where none are now admitted, but those who take the oath against her majesty.

The sect of the Jesuits are special instruments to alienate the people from her majesty, so faction, and to absolve them of the oath of obedience, and prepare the way to rebellion and revolt.

Besides, for confirmation of their own religion they have used some reformation of the clergy, and brought in catechizing.



The great Duke of Tuscany, Francisco de Medici, son to Cosmo, and the third duke of that family and province; of the age of forty years, of

disposition severe and sad, rather than manly and grave; no princely port or behaviour more than a great justicer; inclined to peace, and gathering money. All Tuscany is subject unto him, wherein were divers commonwealths; whereof the chief were Florence, Siena, and Pisa, Prato, and Pistoia, saving Lucca, and certain forts on the sea-coast, held by the King of Spain.

He retaineth in his service few, and they strangers, to whom he giveth pensions. In all his citadels he hath garrison of Spaniards, except at Siena: in housekeeping spendeth little, being as it were in pension, agreeing for so much the year with a citizen of Florence for his diet: he has a small guard of Swissers, and when he rideth abroad a guard of forty light horsemen. The militia of his country amounteth to forty thousand soldiers, to the which he granteth leave to wear their weapons on the holy days, and other immunities. Besides, he entertaineth certain men of arms, to the which he giveth seven crowns the month. He also maintaineth seven galleys, the which serve under his knights, erected by his father in Pisa, of the order of St. Stephano: of these galleys three go every year in chase.

His common exercise is in distillations, and in trying of conclusions, the which he doth exercise in a house called Cassino in Florence, where he spendeth the most part of the day; giving ear in the mean season to matters of affairs, and conferring with his chief officers. His revenues are esteemed to amount to a million and a half of crowns, of the which

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