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William Waller, he was able to make a careful archæological survey of the city of Winchester, calmly noting its castle, church, school, and King Arthur's Round Table. Thus devoted to the pursuits of peace, it is no wonder that he shortly afterward quitted a land divided by civil warfare. After exhausting the sights of Paris, he sailed to Genoa, inhaled the perfumed breath of the South, lost himself in the sunny mazes of Italian gardens, gazed with curious eye on the treasures of Florentine galleries, wandered through princely palaces, heard the Pope say mass at Rome on Christmas Day, climbed Vesovius, and glided through the voiceless streets of Venice. Then, having declined the honor of a degree offered to him by the University of Padua, and passed, with exceeding pleasure, through the Paradise of Lombardy,' he set his face homeward, returning by Geneva to Paris. Farther, for awhile, he did not proceed; and there, the only time in his whole life, as he tells us, lived • most idly.'
We all know the indigenous growth of such a soil-love, in idleness, of a necessity, sprang up. It was no idle passion, however, with which the daughter of Sir Richard Browne inspired him, though he was at this time seven-and-twenty; and she, the age of one of Shakspeare's women,' not yet fourteen.
Early in the year we find him changing his lodgings from the Place de M. de Metz, near the Abbey of St. Germain, to one in the Rue Columbier, donbtless to bring him nearer to “Rue Farrene,' where the English Ambassador resided, and of which the pleasant situation lingered long in the memory of the Ambassador's daughter. Nay, as spring advanced, he began learning the late, though to small perfection; a symptom which we take to be something like Benedict's brushing his hat o' mornings. Later, his valet, Herbert, robbing him of clothes and plate to the value of threescore pounds, his effects were recovered for him by the good offices of Sir Richard Browne; for whose lady and family, when mentioning the circumstance, he acknowledges he had contracted a great friendship; having particularly set his affections on their daughter. His suit found favor with the Ambassador and his lady; and in her decliving days their child recorded her gratitude to those who had placed her in such worthy hands. Accordingly, on Corpus Christi Day, 1647, wben the houses were hung with tapestry, and the streets strown with flowers, amidst all the glitter and gaiety of a Paris fète, the marriage vows were taken in the Chapel of the Embassy, before Dr. Earle, afterward Bishop of Salisbury. Three months after this Evelyn quitted Paris for England, leaving his wife, still very young, under the care of an excellent lady, and prudent mother.'
Young she certainly was; her studies, it may be, somewhat incomplete, and her babits unfixed. But circumstances, after all, are our great instructors, and the brief spring-tide of her youth had been passed amid such as would not fail to impress a thoughtful nature with a serious view of life and its responsibilities. Her eyes had early been accustomed to look on scenes of suffering solaced by benevolence, and of trial sustained with fortitude. Her mother's house was an asylum for her exiled countrymen, as well as an hospital for the sick and needy. For many years of their residence in Paris they were subjected to the direst want of money, and precious lessons are those that are taught in the school of poverty. In a letter of Sir Richard Browne's to Lord Digby, dated 1644, he declares that, unless he is supplied with money, inevitable ruin must befall him.'
Mrs. Evelyn was still residing in her father's house when Sir Richard's landlord threatened to seize on his goods, the rent having been for some time due, and he being without means of satisfying him. Charles himself was at this time besieged by butchers, bakers, brewers, and other tradesmen. Hyde was often puzzled how to pay the postage of his state correspondence. Neither to the King, then, nor to his Chancellor of the Exchequer, could the Ambassador apply for assistance, and he was at last obliged to Sir Richard Foster for helping him ont of his difficulties.
But household cares would be lightly met in those times, in which the vail of conventionality was rudely torn aside from life. Delicate women learnt to endure hardship; the timorous cast aside their fears. They came forth to head the defense of a beleagured castle, or to conduct in safety some precious and imperiled life through the threatening dangers of surrounding foes, as though these were the ordinary avocations of their condition; so calmly and with so little self-consciousness were their decds of heroism accomplished. In such seasons of revolution, whether of thought or society, or of government, it is indeed 'impossible to be young, and to be indifferent.'
Paris was strictly besieged by the Prince de Condé, and Sir Richard Browne and his family shared in all the discomfort and annoyance, if not the dangers, of the siege, and 'the letter of consolation,' written by Evelyn to his wife at this time, must have been especially welcome. This was in February, 1649. They did not meet again until the following August, after a separation of a year and a half.
Evelyn's presence in England was necessary for the sake of his own affairs, and those of his father-in-law, at whose house, Sayes Court, he spent much of his time, having a lodging and some books there. Mighty changes had been accomplished during the period of his sojourn there. Charles's head had fallen by the hands of his subjects, and unkingship was proclaimed in England.'
The faithful few who still acknowledged a King of England now sought bim at St. Germain, whither Evelyn, soon after his return to Paris, proceeded, to kiss his Majesty's hand, being conveyed there in my Lord Wilmot's coach, their party including Mrs. Barlow, the mother of the Duke of Monmouth. It was in better company than that of the brown, beautiful, bold, but insipid creature,' whom in those few words he has so graphically described, that his next visit to the English court was paid. For his wife and cousin accompanied him to kiss the Queen Mother's hand, and they dined there with my Lord Keeper and Lord Hatton.
At the Louvre in the following month they visited one of the heroines, whose great qualities the misfortunes of the times had called into action. Lady Morton now resided there, the widow of Robert, Earl of Morton, and governess to the Princess Henrietta, who, a fortnight after her birth, had been committed to her care by her ill-fated mother, when compelled to flee from Exeter by the approach of the Earl of Essex. Lady Morton remained in the threatened city, until its relief by the royal army; when she had the joy of laying the infant for the first time, and, as it proved, the last, in the father's arms; for Charles never again saw the child, who was baptized, according to his desire, by the name of Henrietta Anne.
From Exeter Lady Morton removed with the Princess to Oatlands; but in the course of the following year, she was ordered by the Parliament to resign her charge to the Countess of Northumberland, with whom the other royal children were placed. On this she resolved to escape into France where Henrietta Maria now resided, and to restore the princess to her mother, by whom she had been first consigned to her, and to whom alone she could feel justified in resigning her.
From Oatlands to Dover her journey was accomplished on foot; and as the utmost secrecy was requisite to insure the success of her plan, a disguise was of necessity adopted. Lady Morton accordingly assumed the dress of a poor French woman; but even this homely garb could not conceal her grace and loveliness ;
As shines the moon in clouded skies,
She in her poor attire was seen :
One her dark huir and lovesome mien.' The beauty which poverty and rags could not vail, she was obliged to subject to an eclipse; and adjusting an artificial hump on her shoulder, she dressed her little princess as a beggar-boy, and thus disfigured and disguised escaped without detection; and
through the guards, the river, and the sea,
Faith, Beauty, Wit, and Courage made their wuy. The fair company thus revealed to the poet's eye, to the common wayfarer appeared only in the guise of a deformed French beggarwoman, with ber little boy Pierre, whom she carried on her back as she walked bravely along to Dover; the child, much to her alarm, though scarcely less to her amusement, indignantly repudiating the the character she was compelled to assume, and declaring to all they met that she was a Princess, and not Pierre, the beggar-boy.
Happily her royal highness's explanations were not very intelligible, and her pronunciation of princess so closely resembled the name bestowed on her by her guardian (who had indeed selected it for that reason), that they were allowed to pursue their way unmolested, until, arrived in France, their dangers were over, and the Princess resumed her rank, and Lady Morton her beauty. Proceeding to Paris, the one was received into the rapturous embraces of her mother, the other found herself the object of praise and admiration for her noble daring and devoted fidelity. Sir Thomas Berkeley sought her hand, and it is said never forgave Clarendon, (who had a great friendship for her, and by whose advice she acted,) for her rejection of his suit. Waller sung her praises in an ode presented by him to the Queen at the Louvre, on New Year's Day, 1647, in which he thus addressed her:
But thus to style you fair, your sex's praise,
And make whole kingdoms take her brother's part. Waller, who, having praised some whom he would have been afraid to marry,' was now married to one whom he would have been ashamed to praise,' lived on terms of great intimacy with the
Evelyns; and to one of his children Mrs. Evelyn stood sponsor. But her little god-daughter did not long survive, either to follow her example or to need her cares. She died in her infancy, brought from St. Germain, where her parents were residing, to Paris, that she might be buried with the religious rites of the Church of England.
Christenings in those days were expensive ceremonies to all concerned in then. Evelyn records how, when last in England, he stood godfather to a little niece, on whom he bestowed the same name as that borne by his wife, Mary, and presented to the child a piece of plate of the value of £18, with an elaborate Latin inscription of his own composition engraved on it. Again in Paris, he relates how Sir Hngh Rilie, being too poor to provide sponsors for his child, he and other friends drew lots who should offer themselves for that office. We may remember, too, how the thrifty Pepys, putting the spoons in his pocket that he designed as a present for his godchild, brought them home again, well pleased at having escaped the compliment, and the expense it entailed, of being requested to name the child at the font.
[In 1650, Evelyn again crossed to England, but returned to France after a short absence. The battle of Worcester settled the government of the country contrary to his wishes, but he accepted the situation and arranged to take his wife to Sayes Court. On her way she made a visit to Penshurst, and was present at the second nuptials of the Countess of Sutherland.]
Sayes Court Amidst broad, flat meadows, stretching toward the banks of the Thames, and shadowed by a few old hollow elms, and a standard holly or two, stood the Manor-house of West Greenwich or Deptford. Sayes Court was so called after the family into whose hands it had passed from those of the Knight on whom it had been bestowed by William the Conqueror. Geoffrey de Say bad, in the fervor of crusading zeal, presented it to the Knights Templars; but his descendants, after awhile, resumed the gift. It had for many years been held under the crown by the family of Browne, in whose pasture the cattle, supplied from the remoter provinces for the use of the king's household, were fed.
Never a large estate, it was during the Commonwealth greatly curtailed in its dimensions. The Parliament had left the present owner but sixty acres attached to the dwelling. This was a long, low house, two stories high, with mullioned windows, and pointed