ePub 版

that they might feel some punishment for their crime, they were made to suffer all the terrors of death, for their pardon did not come till they had actually laid their heads on the block, expecting that, in a moment's time, they would be cut off. Sir Walter Raleigh was reprieved, but was still confined in prison; and, many years afterwards, having fallen into disgrace, this sentence was cruelly and unfairly executed, and he was beheaded.

As James the First was the son of Mary Queen of Scots, many of the Papists expected that he would encourage popery; and they were therefore grievously disappointed when they found, that, though he was too wise to oppress and persecute them, vet he still was a true and faithful friend to the Protestant cause. On this account, they contrived a plot to destroy him and his family, and both houses of Parliament together. This is the horrid“ Gunpowder plot," that you have so often heard of. The conspirators hired a house adjoining that where Parliament met, from which they could get into the cellar, under the Parliament-house. - Into this cellar they conveyed thirty-six barrels of gunpowder, and these they covered with coals and faggots, so that whoever saw the cellar could perceive nothing particular in the appearance of it; as it had been generally used to keep coals in. At the opening of the Parliament, the King, Queen,and Prince Henry, their eldest son, were expected to be present, and the conspirators seemed to think that nothing was likely to happen to check their wicked design.

However, Providence mercifully prevented this dreadful destruction. One of those concerned in the plot was Sir Henry Percy; and he was very desirous of saving the life of Lord Monteagle, who was his intimate friend. About ten days before the meeting of Parliament, this nobleman received a letter without any name to it, which was brought by a person who made his escape the moment he had

[ocr errors]

أي )1

delivered it. The following strange words were in the letter, My Lord, stay away from this Parliament, for God and man have concurred to punish the wickedness of the times. And think not slightly of this advertisement, but retire yourself into your country, where you may expect the event in safety. For, though there be no appearance of any stir, yet I say they will receive a terrible blow this Pará liament, and yet they shall not see who hurts them. This counsel is not to be condemned, because it may do you good, and can do you no harm. For the danger is past as soon as you have burned the letter."

This mysterious letter greatly puzzled Lord Monteagle, and he at first thought that it was 'meant only to frighten him, and laugh at him. He, however, judged it safest to carry the letter to Lord Salisbury, who was then secretary of state." Lord Salisbury, too, was inclined to think the letter not much worth attending to; yet he thought it the safest course to lay it before the King in council. None of the council knew what to make of it; and it is said that the King was the first person who found out the meaning of this strange letter. He thought he saw in it something of a plot to produce a great destruction by means of gunpowder; and, upon this they set about examining the cellars and vaults below both houses of Parliament. Here they found large heaps of faggots under the House of Lords, and they found a strange_looking man, dressed in a cloak and boots, and with a dark lantern in his hand. This was Guy Fawkes, who was laying the train, and getting every thing ready for the dreadful explosion, which was planned for the next day. This wretched man did not seem in the least to be sorry for what he was doing; but he told the officers who took him that he should have been glad to have blown them all up, and himself too. His spirit, however, was a little humbled, when he was threatened to be tortured to make him confess all he knew of the plot; and he then made a full discovery of all his accomplices. When the dreadful plot was thus discovered, the principal conspirators prepared for resisting the authority that was to seize and punish them. They accordingly shut themselves up in a house in Warwickshire, determined to defend it to the last. But a dreadful accident happened to them, and just such a one as they had themselves contrived for others. A spark of fire fell amongst some gunpowder which was laid to dry; it blew up, and made terrible destruction among the conspirators. Some of them endeavoured to rush out of the gate, but were soon cut to pieces by the soldiers who surrounded the house. Some few escaped the slaughter, but were afterwards executed, and some experienced the King's mercy.

I have told you that Sir Walter Raleigh was kept in prison, having been condemned for a supposed conspiracy against the King. There he remained for many years. He, at length, got leave to go on an expedition to America, having said that he had discovered a rich gold-mine there. They found no gold, however, but Raleigh attacked the Spaniards who were settled there, and this gave offence to the King of Spain ; and King James declared that Raleigh had his orders to avoid all disputes with the Spaniards: and then, to please the King of Spain, he signed the warrant for his execution, not for his present offence, but for his former conspiracy. This seems very hard upon Raleigh; he, however, suffered with the greatest calmness and resignation; he took hold of the axe, and he felt the edge of it, saying, that "it was a sharp, but a sure remedy for all sufferings in this world;" he then made a calm address to the people, and laid his head on the block, without the least appearance of fear.

There were several circumstances too long for me to mention, which prevented King James from having an easy or a happy reign. He was very fond too of trying how far he might go, on his own authority, without consulting the Lords or the Commons; and this made him many enemies. He had besides many expensive friends and favourites about him, and he was always craving for more money to supply their extravagant wants. In short, the people were full of dissatisfaction; and their discontents gave the King great trouble; and they broke out still more violently, as we shall see, in the reign of his son, Charles the First. 21:41

The discontents of the people, and the bąd success of the King, in his war against the Emperor of Germany, might perhaps have had some effects on his constitution; but, however this might be, he was seized with what is called a tertian ague*. His courtiers, thinking to please him, told him of a foolish-saying, that, “ this was health for a King;', but the King knew better, and said that the proverb was meant for a young king. After some fits, he became extremely weak, and he expired in the year 1625, after a reign, over England, of twenty-two years. He was about sixty years of age.org

1 ? its " I am, &c. is ro J.S.

LIR 2 1911ur,

TI * basong OBSERVATIONS ON GARDENING, FOR MARCH. To the Editor of the Cottager's Monthly Visitor. SIR)

quito: Sowing t.- Black seeds, as onion and leek, are spread with greater regularity after mixing them

[ocr errors]
[ocr errors]
[ocr errors]
[ocr errors]

* One that returns every third day.

+ We have omitted the greater part of our correspondent's directions for the culture of common vegetables, having treated on that subject in our first volume.

with a little whitening, that they may be seen. Carrot seed is generally rubbed with a little sand, to prevent the seeds from sticking together. Flower seeds, especially the smaller kinds, should barely be covered with earth. Manure, for onions, with well-rotted vegetables, and dung. Long manure nakes carrots divide in the roots, by opposing their 'free descent. The ground can scarcely be rendered too rich for cauliflowers..

Strawberries.-Strawberry beds will seldom continue to bear well for more than four or five years; before which period, therefore, new beds should be formed, so as to be in full bearing when the others are wearing out. In forming fresh beds, make them entirely of runners, which have been separated from the parent plants, and planted out the preceding year. I must, however, except the Alpine, which is most advantageously raised from seed. It is a good economical plan to make edgings for borders of any kind, except the Alpine. The hautboy is large, the Alpine bears a succession of small fruit for many months, but no kinds are so delicious as the red and white pine. Supply the hautboy liberally with manure, but not the pine, which also will not bear well in shady situations.

Cuttings and Suckers.Gooseberry and currant trees should always be raised from cuttings. Raspberries, some shrubs and forest trees, and sometimes stocks for grafting on, are raised firom suckers.

Laying, or Layering, is performed on a variety of trees and shrubs that do not easily strike root from cuttings. Choose a branch that spreads near the ground; and, having cut off the side branches, a short distance from the end, make a cross cut on the under side, half through the branch; and, from this cut, make another directly upwards, and in the nick, place a piece of pot-sherd, to keep it open. Bend the wounded part of the branch into the bottom of a small hole made in the ground to receive

[ocr errors]
« 上一頁繼續 »