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KING HENRY AND ANNE OF CLEVES.
cellors and officers, amongst whome Doctor Daie, appointed her almoner, made to her an eloquent oration in Latine, which oration was answered unto by the Duke her brother's secretarie; which done, the ladie Margaret Dowglas, daughter to the Queene of Scots, the ladie Marquesse Dorsset, daughter to the French queen, being neeces to the king, and the Dutches of Ritchmond, the Countesses of Rutland and Hereford, with divers other ladies and gentlewomen, to the number of three score and five, saluted and welcomed her grace, who alighted out of her chariot, and with courteous demeanour and lovinge countenance, gave to them hartie thanks and kissed them all, and after all her councellors and officers kissed her hand; which done, she, with all the ladies, entered the tents, and there warmed them a space; and (it being the depth of winter) when the king knewe that she was arrived in her tent, he with all diligence set out through the parke. And first issued the King's trumpets, the officers of his council, the officers of his privie chamber, the barons, the lord mayor, the bishops, earles, the Duke of Baviere, and countie palatine of the Rhine; then the ambassadours of the French king and emperor, Cromwell, the lord privie seale, the lord chancellour, the garter king-at-arms, and the other officers and sergeants of arms, gave their attendance on each side the lord. The lord Marquesse Dorsset bare the sword of state, and after him, a good distance, followed the King's Highnesse, mounted on a goodlie courser.
“To speake of the rich and gorgeous apparel that was there to be seen that daie, I have thought it not greatlie necessarie, sith each man may well think it was right sumptuous and very faire and costlie. After the king followed the lord chamberlayne, then the master of his horsses richly mounted and leading the king's horsse of estate by a long reine of gold. Then followed the pages of honour, riding on great coursers, then the captaine of the gard, then the gard well horssed, and in their rich cotes, etc.
“When Her Grace understood that the king was come, she came forth of her tent, and at the doore thereof, being set on a faire and beautiful horsse, richly trapped, she rode forth towards the King, who perceiving her to approach, came forward somewhat beyond the Crosse, then staid till she came nearer, and then putting off his cap, he made forward to her, and, with most loving countenance and princelie behaviour, saluted, welcomed, and imbraced her, to the great rejoising of the beholders : And she likewise, not forgetting her dutie, with most amiable aspect and romantic behaviour, received him with many apt words and thanks, as was most to purpose.
“ After the king had talked a small while, he put her on his right hand, and so with their footmen they rode together; and returned in this manner through the ranks of the knights and esquires, which stood still all this while, and removed not.” (The procession through the park is glowingly described, but her reception in the palace is all we can introduce in this place.) “Now were the citizens of London rowing up and doune on the Thames before them, every craft with his barge garnished with banners, flags, streamers, pencels, and targets, painted and beaten with the king's armes, some with her armes, and some with the armes of their craft and mysterie. There was a barge called the Bachellors Barke, richlie decked, on the which waited a foist that shot great pieces of artillerie; and in every barge was great store of instruments of divers sorts, and men and children singing and plaieng altogether, as the King and the Ladie Anne passed bye the wharfe. When the king and she were within the utter court, they alighted from their horses, and the king lovinglie imbraced her, kissed her, and bade her welcome to her owne, leading her by the left arme through the hall, and so brought her up to her privie chamber, where he left her for that time, while a great peal of artillerie was shot off from the tower of Greenwich and thereabout.”
Such are a few of the particulars given by Holinshed of this matrimonial fete: but the account by Hall is still more circumstantial, and both afford vivid pictures of the regal splendour which characterized all the court pageants of that gorgeous reign. Little did Anne of Cleves imagine, as the magnificent view opened upon her, with Eltham Hall on her left, Greenwich on her right, Westminster and St. Paul's in the distance, a sovereign at her feet, and an assembled nation eager to do her homage-little did she imagine how dark would be the sunset of this bright day; and yet, compared with that which overtook her unhappy sisters-partners of the same throne—her destiny was rather to be envied than lamented.
The town of Eltham, of which our limits prevent a more deliberate notice, is still one of the most favourite retreats in the vicinity of town, and formerly could number among its residents many celebrated names. The church and churchyard are interesting, and contain several classic tombs and inscriptions. The environs are rich and picturesque, the society is select and intellectual, the air is salubrious; and within seven miles of the capital it would be difficult to find any point that offers so many inviting qualities for a quiet and cheerful residence as Eltham.
AUTHORITIES :- Camden. — Stow. - Blome. -Collins's Peerage.-Buckler.—Notices of Eltham. Leland.-Grafton.—Hall.—Life of the Black Prince. -MS. Visit to Eltham, March, 1842.-Royal Halls. -do. Richard the Second.-Archæologia.—Gentle For an admirable description of Greenwich Park man's Mag. — Hasted. — Parliamentary Surveys.- and its vicinity, the reader is referred to Mr. Miller's Lambard.-Lysons.— Kilburue.-Graphic Illustrator. “ Lady Jane Grey,"_“Banks of the Thames,” etc. etc.
“ g5 we descended the hill towards Rochester, how solemn the appearance of
the Castle, with its square ghastly walls, and their hollow eyes rising over the right bank of the Medway, grey and massive and floorless—nothing remaining but the shell !” Such was the memorandum of her visit to this scene, left by the author of the Mysteries of Udolpho, as she descended Strood Hill, and gazed upon the magnificent ruin to which this portion of our work is to be directed. Viewed from this point—the hill above namedthe Castle appears to great advantage. Soaring in lofty pre-eminence over the surrounding buildings, and even the Cathedral, it conveys to the spectator's mind a deep impression of what it must have been in the palmy days of chivalry, when mailed warriors lined its ramparts, when joust and tourney animated its courts, and banners floated from its towers. In its present condition it bears that resemblance to its former self which a skeleton bears to