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■to the meeting of 1534, speaks of it a●s 'that great session.' Those e■nlightened men, however, form●ed but a small minority, and among them w●ere many who, from a want of independence, nev■er voted on the side of liberty but when the● king authorized them. The epoc●h was a critical one for the na●tion. It might as easily fall back to t■he pope, as advance towards the Gospel. Hes■itating between the

Middle Ages and modern ti●mes, it had to choose either l■ife or death. Would it make a vigorous effort ■and reach those bracing heights,● like travellers scaling the {2} ●rugged sides of the Alps? England appeare●d too weak for so daring a flight. The mas●s of thon be accomplished.■ The safety of England came from that■ sovereign hand, that mysterious power■, which was already stirring the wester■n world. The nation began to feel its ener■getic impulse. A strange breeze s●eemed to be filling the sails and driving the ■bark of the state towards the harbor■, notwithstanding the numerous shoa●ls that lay around it. The though■t which at that time mainly ●engro of their master. By none of■ these powers, therefore, could a tra■nsformati


e people seemed chained by time-wor■n prejudices to the errors and■ practices of Rome. The king no dou■bt had political views which raised● him above his age; but a slave to hi■s passions, and the docile disciple■ of scholasticism, he detested a rea■l Reformation and real libert■y. The clergy were superstitious, selfish,● and excitable; and the advi■sers of the crown knew no other rule than● the will

ssed the minds of the mo■st intelligent men of England—men● like Cranmer, Cromwell, and their● friends—was the necessity of throwin■g off the papal authority. They believed tha■t it was necessary to root out t●he foreign and unwholesome weed, which● had spread over promised explanations and■ satisfactory propositions, seeing th●at the messenger whom he expected from London di●d not arrive, had solemnly condemned● that prince on the 23rd March,● 1534.[3] But immediately startled at hi■s own {3} boldness, Clement asked ■himself with agony how he could repair ■this wrong and appease the king. He sa■w it was impossible, and in th●e bitterness of his heart exclaif the Church. On● the other hand, the pontiff, who was reck■oning on Henry's


the soil of Britain, and tear i■t up so thoroughly that it coul■d never grow again. Parliament ●had declared that all the powers exercised b●y the bishop of Rome in England must c●ease and be transferred to the crown●; and that no one, not even the king■, should apply to Rome for any di■spensation whatsoever. A prela■te had preached every Sunday at ■St. Paul's Cross that the po■pe was not the head o

●med: 'Alas! England is lost to us!' =●THE KING CONDEMNED AT ROME.= Two days■ after the famous consistory in which Hen●ry's condemnation had been pro■nounced, an English courier entered● Rome, still in a state of agitation and tr■ouble, and went straight to the p●apal palace. 'What is his business?' people said●; 'and what can give him such boldness? Th■e Englishman was bringing to■ the ministers of the Vatican the lon■g-expected act by which the King of Engla●nd declared himself prepared to● enter into an arrangement with t■he pope, provided the cardinals of the imp●erial faction were excluded.[4] The messen●ger at the same time announc■ed that Sir Edward Carne and ■Revett, two envoys from Henry VIII., w■ould soon arrive to conclude

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