Imatges de pÓgina






One of BISHOP HURD'S Dialogues, 'On the Golden Age of Queen Elizabeth,' still deserves to be read, both on account of its discriminating criticism and as one of the earliest indications of a reaction from the excessive eulogy which it had been usual, before that time, to bestow on the policy and character of Elizabeth.

In biography, LORD BACON'S Life of Henry VII., though conceived in too eulogistic a spirit, is praised by Hallam as 'the first instance in our language of the application of philosophy to reasoning on public events in the manner of the ancients and the Italians.' Life of Henry VIII., by LORD HERBERT of Cherbury,2 Cherbury, considered with regard to the time of its production, is



Lord Her

bert of

and Sir

John Hay- also a work of high excellence. SIR JOHN HAYWARD'S


Life of Edward VI3 and Annals of the First Four Years

Lives of
Henry VII.

VIII and


Strype. The work betrays considerable partiality, but although severely animadverted upon by different critics, has not been shewn to contain any grave misstatement of facts. It was criticised by Madox, bishop of Worcester, in 1733, in an anonymous production entitled A Vindication of the Church of England.

A Church History of England from the Commencement of the Sixteenth Century to the Revolution in 1688, by CHARLES DODD,' is a work of some importance from the amount of information it contains concerning the movements and organisation of the Catholic community. It has also been praised for its freedom from prejudice and from any endeavour to distort or suppress facts. It is, however, wanting in accuracy of detail,— dates, and even names, being often incorrectly given.

VI, by


Edited with Notes, Additions, and a Continuation, by the Rev. M. A. Tierney, F.S.A. 5 vols. 1839.

2 Printed in Kennett, see supra, p. 217.

In the same. For a criticism of this Life see Strype, Memorials, vol. ii. pt. ii. c. 28.

of the Reign of Elizabeth' are performances of some literary merit, although the former is mainly a compilation from the young king's Journal. FIDDES'S Life Fiddes's Life of of Wolsey (1724) is conceived in a spirit far too favourable Wolsey. to that prelate and his pretensions, but contains some valuable documents.


Life of

A Life of Bishop Fisher, by LEWIS,2 is a work of merit, Lewis's and affords a good illustration of the views and principles Fisher. of the moderate Catholic party prior to the rupture of the Crown with Rome; it also contains numerous original documents.

1 Edited from a MS. in the Harleian Collection, by John Bruce. C. S. 1840.

2 The Life of Dr. John Fisher. By John Lewis. With Introduction by T. Hudson Turner, 2 vols. 1855. (Lewis, the author, died in 1746.)


FULLER'S History of the Worthies of England-in the Fuller's opinion of many, the most valuable of all his works-is a sensible but appreciative Acta Sanctorum, interspersed with much interesting information on the antiquities and characteristic features of the different counties of England. STRYPE'S Lives of Cranmer, archbishop Parker, Strype's Sir John Cheke, Sir Thomas Smith, bishop Aylmer, Lives. Grindal, and Whitgift, are a series of important works, reproducing much that is to be found in the Memorials and Annals, and marked by the same defects, but also containing much that is calculated further to illustrate the history of the age. LLOYD'S State Worthies, pub- Lloyd's lished in 1670, is a series of epigrammatic, caustic, and Worthi often happily expressed sketches of many of the most notable characters in English history, from the accession of Henry VIII. to the reign of Charles I. The work preserves many details that we should otherwise lack, but its statements are not altogether to be relied upon. The Athenae Oxonienses of ANTHONY WOOD, first pub- Wood's




Nichols's Royal Pro gresses.

lished in 1691, contains a valuable collection of biographical materials with respect to eminent churchmen or authors educated at Oxford; the arrangement, however, is often slovenly, and the compiler is by no means free from prejudice.

Few works are more deserving of careful perusal on the part of those who are desirous of acquiring a genuine knowledge of the Elizabethan age than NICHOLS'S Progresses of Queen Elizabeth, a collection in which the customs, manners, learning, and etiquette of the times each in turn receive a large amount of curious and often entertaining illustration.

Irish History.-For Irish history at this period, the third and fourth volumes of BREWER'S Calendar of Letters and Papers of the Reign of Henry VIII. (supra, p. 312) afford guidance to much original material in the earlier part of the century. For the condition of the country at the latter part, prior to the subjugation of the Earl of Tyrone, the tractate of Edmund Spenser, the poet, is perhaps the least partial piece of contemporary evidence. Among modern writers, Hallam gives a clear and succinct sketch of the constitution of Ireland in the eighteenth chapter of his Constitutional History; Mr. A. G. Richey's two series of Lectures on Early Irish History (1869 and 1870) are of much value; and Mr. Lecky, in his History of England in the Eighteenth Century (vol. ii. c. 6), gives an able sketch of 'Ireland before the Eighteenth Century,' together with references to the best authorities.

Scottish History.-For Scottish history, as viewed by native contemporary writers, the Latin work of George Buchanan, which commences with the earliest times and concludes with the accession of James VI. (1567), is by far the most important. Of this, a translation was published at Edinburgh in 1821, in

1 An improved edition appeared at Oxford in 1815-18, edited by Dr. Bliss. 3 vols.

3 The Progresses and Public Processions of Queen Elizabeth. Among which are interspersed other Solemnities, Public Expenditures, and Remarkable Events, &c. By John Nichols. 3 vcls. 1823.

three volumes. The Annals of Scotland, by George Majoribanks (Edin. 1814) is a meagre record, by a burgess of Edinburgh, extending from 1514 to 1591, but filling only sixty-two pages. Two volumes of Calendars of State Papers, edited by Mr. M. J. Thorpe (R. S. 1858), comprise the period ̄15091603; the second volume contains the State Papers relating to Mary, queen of Scots, during her detention in England.

Modern Writers.-The well-known work of MR. FROUDE abounds with graphic descriptions, accompanied by much admirable and just criticism. In its composition he was largely aided by his researches among the archives at Simancas, collections which at that time had been very imperfectly investigated. Unfortunately, the conception he has formed of the character and conduct of Henry VIII. is of so strained and unreal a kind as to deprive this portion of his History of much of its value. The reign of Edward VI. is described with more impartiality, but the policy of Somerset is somewhat harshly judged, and the student will do well to compare this portion of the work with the more sober narrative of Lingard or Tytler. The volumes that relate to the reign of Elizabeth are the most valuable part of the work, and the treatment of successive questions is often vigorous and original; accuracy of detail, however, cannot be said to be a distinguishing characteristic of this writer, and his omissions are often serious. The student also fails to find that criticism, for which he would naturally look, of contemporary writers.

The portion of RANKE'S History of the Popes which belongs to the present division, should be studied in conjunction with Macaulay's brilliant Essay on the whole work, and the not less useful analysis by MILMAN.2

1 History of England, from the Fall of Wolsey to the Defeat of the Spanish Armada. By James Anthony Froude. 12 vols. 1870.

2 See Savonarola, Erasmus, and other Essays. By Dean Milman.


Froude's History of England.

Ranke's History of

the Popes and History of England.



J. H. Blunt,



Marsden, and Dr. Maitland.

The three masterly and luminous chapters in which Ranke, in his History of England, sums up the main features of our national development down to the reign of James I., contain an unrivalled outline of the subject. Hallam's temperate and judicious criticisms of the period in the first five chapters of his Constitutional History, though somewhat modified by later research, still retain much of their original value for the student.


LINGARD'S History, in a great measure superseded, as regards the earlier volumes, by more recent investigations, is of high value for the sixteenth century, as giving the views of a candid and judicious Catholic historian with respect to a period in which the fortunes and principles of the Roman Church were subjected to no ordinary tests. HAUSSER'S History of the Period of the Reformation supplies an outline, of no great merit, of the movement both in England and on the Continent, extending to nearly the middle of the seventeenth century. Two works of recent date, MR. J. H. BLUNT'S Reformation in England (1869), which embraces the period A.D. 1514-1547, and MR. R. W. DIXON'S History of the Church of England,3-are valuable as presenting us with the evidence and the arguments which serve to qualify the too complacent estimate of this great revolution common with English writers. MR. HAWEIS' Sketches of the Reformation (1844), is a small volume containing within a moderate compass more valuable illustration of the habits of thought of the early Reformers than many works of much greater bulk.


A History of England. Principally in the Seventeenth Century. By Leopold von Ranke. 6 vols. Clarendon Press. 1875.

2 Haüsser (Ludwig), The Period of the Reformation (1517–1648). Edited by W. Oncken. Translated by Mrs. Sturge. 2 vols. 1873.

History of the Church of England from the Abolition of the Roman Jurisdiction. By the Rev. R. W. Dixon. Vol. i. (1529–1537); Vol. ii. 1538-1548). 1877-80.

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