Curiosities of Literature,  Vol. 2
436 pages
English

Curiosities of Literature, Vol. 2

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436 pages
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Publié le 08 décembre 2010
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The Project Gutenberg EBook of Curiosities of Literature, by Isaac Disraeli Vol. II (of 3) This eBook is for the use of anyone anywhere at no cost and with almost no restrictions whatsoever. You may copy it, give it away or re-use it under the terms of the Project Gutenberg License included with this eBook or online at www.gutenberg.net Title: Curiosities of Literature, Vol. II (of 3) Edited, With Memoir And Notes, By His Son, The Earl Of Beaconsfield Author: Isaac Disraeli Release Date: July 24, 2005 [EBook #16350] Language: English Character set encoding: ISO-8859-1 *** START OF THIS PROJECT GUTENBERG EBOOK CURIOSITIES OF LITERATURE, *** Produced by Jonathan Ingram, Clare Coney and the Online Distributed Proofreading Team at http://www.pgdp.net CURIOSITIES OF LITERATURE. BY ISAAC DISRAELI. A New Edition EDITED, WITH MEMOIR AND NOTES, BY HIS SON, THE EARL OF BEACONSFIELD. IN THREE VOLUMES. VOL. II. LONDON: FREDERICK WARNE AND CO. AND NEW YORK CONTENTS OF VOLUME II. CHARLES THE FIRST. DUKE OF BUCKINGHAM. THE DEATH OF CHARLES IX. ROYAL PROMOTIONS. NOBILITY. MODES OF SALUTATION, AND AMICABLE CEREMONIES, OBSERVED IN VARIOUS NATIONS. FIRE, AND THE ORIGIN OF FIREWORKS. THE BIBLE PROHIBITED AND IMPROVED. ORIGIN OF THE MATERIALS OF WRITING. ANECDOTES OF EUROPEAN MANNERS. THE EARLY DRAMA. THE MARRIAGE OF THE ARTS. A CONTRIVANCE IN DRAMATIC DIALOGUE. THE COMEDY OF A MADMAN. SOLITUDE. LITERARY FRIENDSHIPS. ANECDOTES OF ABSTRACTION OF MIND. RICHARDSON. INFLUENCE OF A NAME. THE JEWS OF YORK. THE SOVEREIGNTY OF THE SEAS. ON THE CUSTOM OF KISSING HANDS. POPES. LITERARY COMPOSITION. POETICAL IMITATIONS AND SIMILARITIES. EXPLANATION OF THE FAC-SIMILE. LITERARY FASHIONS. THE PANTOMIMICAL CHARACTERS. EXTEMPORAL COMEDIES. MASSINGER, MILTON, AND THE ITALIAN THEATRE. SONGS OF TRADES, OR SONGS FOR THE PEOPLE. INTRODUCERS OF EXOTIC FLOWERS, FRUITS, ETC. USURERS OF THE SEVENTEENTH CENTURY. CHIDIOCK TITCHBOURNE. ELIZABETH AND HER PARLIAMENT. ANECDOTES OF PRINCE HENRY, THE SON OF JAMES I., WHEN A CHILD. THE DIARY OF A MASTER OF THE CEREMONIES. DIARIES—MORAL, HISTORICAL, AND CRITICAL. LICENSERS OF THE PRESS. OF ANAGRAMS AND ECHO VERSES. ORTHOGRAPHY OF PROPER NAMES. NAMES OF OUR STREETS. SECRET HISTORY OF EDWARD VERE, EARL OF OXFORD. ANCIENT COOKERY, AND COOKS. ANCIENT AND MODERN SATURNALIA. RELIQUIÆ GETHINIANÆ. ROBINSON CRUSOE. CATHOLIC AND PROTESTANT DRAMAS. THE HISTORY OF THE THEATRE DURING ITS SUPPRESSION. DRINKING-CUSTOMS IN ENGLAND. LITERARY ANECDOTES. CONDEMNED POETS. ACAJOU AND ZIRPHILE. TOM O' BEDLAMS. INTRODUCTION OF TEA, COFFEE, AND CHOCOLATE. CHARLES THE FIRST'S LOVE OF THE FINE ARTS. SECRET HISTORY OF CHARLES THE FIRST, AND HIS QUEEN HENRIETTA. THE MINISTER—THE CARDINAL DUKE OF RICHELIEU. THE MINISTER—DUKE OF BUCKINGHAM, LORD ADMIRAL, LORD GENERAL, &c. &c. &c. FELTON, THE POLITICAL ASSASSIN. JOHNSON'S HINTS FOR THE LIFE OF POPE. MODERN LITERATURE—BAYLE'S CRITICAL DICTIONARY. CHARACTERISTICS OF BAYLE. CICERO VIEWED AS A COLLECTOR. THE HISTORY OF THE CARACCI. AN ENGLISH ACADEMY OF LITERATURE. QUOTATION. THE ORIGIN OF DANTE'S INFERNO. OF A HISTORY OF EVENTS WHICH HAVE NOT HAPPENED. OF FALSE POLITICAL REPORTS. OF SUPPRESSORS AND DILAPIDATORS OF MANUSCRIPTS. PARODIES. ANECDOTES OF THE FAIRFAX FAMILY. MEDICINE AND MORALS. PSALM-SINGING. ON THE RIDICULOUS TITLES ASSUMED BY ITALIAN ACADEMIES. ON THE HERO OF HUDIBRAS; BUTLER VINDICATED. SHENSTONE'S SCHOOL-MISTRESS. BEN JONSON ON TRANSLATION. THE LOVES OF "THE LADY ARABELLA." DOMESTIC HISTORY OF SIR EDWARD COKE. OF COKE'S STYLE, AND HIS CONDUCT. SECRET HISTORY OF AUTHORS WHO HAVE RUINED THEIR BOOKSELLERS. FOOTNOTES. CURIOSITIES OF LITERATURE. CHARLES THE FIRST. Of his romantic excursion into Spain for the Infanta, many curious particulars are scattered amongst foreign writers, which display the superstitious prejudices which prevailed on this occasion, and, perhaps, develope the mysterious politics of the courts of Spain and Rome. Cardinal Gaetano, who had long been nuncio in Spain, observes, that the people, accustomed to revere the Inquisition as the oracle of divinity, abhorred the proposal of the marriage of the Infanta with an heretical prince; but that the king's council, and all wise politicians, were desirous of its accomplishment. Gregory XV. held a consultation of cardinals, where it was agreed that the just apprehension which the English catholics entertained of being more cruelly persecuted, if this marriage failed, was a sufficient reason to justify the pope. The dispensation was therefore immediately granted, and sent to the nuncio of Spain, with orders to inform the Prince of Wales, in case of rupture, that no impediment of the marriage proceeded from the court of Rome, who, on the contrary, had expedited the dispensation. The prince's excursion to Madrid was, however, universally blamed, as being inimical to state interests. Nani, author of a history of Venice, which, according to his digressive manner, is the universal history of his times, has noticed this affair. "The people talked, and the English murmured more than any other nation, to see the only son of the king and heir of his realms venture on so long a voyage, and present himself rather as a hostage, than a husband to a foreign court, which so widely differed in government and religion, to obtain by force of prayer and supplications a woman whom Philip and his ministers made a point of honour and conscience to refuse."[1] Houssaie observes, "The English council were against it, but king James obstinately resolved on it; being over-persuaded by Gondomar, the Spanish ambassador, whose facetious humour and lively repartees greatly delighted him. Gondomar persuaded him that the presence of the prince would not fail of accomplishing this union, and also the restitution of the electorate to his son-inlaw the palatine. Add to this, the Earl of Bristol, the English ambassadorextraordinary at the court of Madrid, finding it his interest, wrote repeatedly to his majesty that the success was certain if the prince came there, for that the Infanta would be charmed with his personal appearance and polished manners. It was thus that James, seduced by these two ambassadors, and by his parental affection for both his children, permitted the Prince of Wales to travel into Spain." This account differs from Clarendon. Wicquefort says, "that James in all this was the dupe of Gondomar, who well knew the impossibility of this marriage, which was alike inimical to the interests of politics and the Inquisition. For a long time he amused his majesty with hopes, and even got money for the household expenses of the future queen. He acted his part so well, that the King of Spain recompensed the knave, on his return, with a seat in the council of state." There is preserved in the British Museum a considerable series of letters which passed between James I. and the Duke of Buckingham and Charles, during their residence in Spain. I shall glean some further particulars concerning this mysterious affair from two English contemporaries, Howel and Wilson, who wrote from their own observations. Howel had been employed in this projected match, and resided during its negotiation at Madrid. Howel describes the first interview of Prince Charles and the Infanta. "The Infanta wore a blue riband about her arm, that the prince might distinguish her, and as soon as she saw the prince her colour rose very high."—Wilson informs us that "two days after this interview the prince was invited to run at the ring, where his fair mistress was a spectator, and to the glory of his fortune, and the great contentment both of himself and the lookers-on, he took the ring the very first course." Howel, writing from Madrid, says, "The people here do mightily magnify the gallantry of the journey, and cry out that he deserved to have the Infanta thrown into his arms the first night he came." The people appear, however, some time after, to doubt if the English had any religion at all. Again, "I have seen the prince have his eyes immovably fixed upon the Infanta half an hour together in a thoughtful speculative posture." Olivares, who was no friend to this match, coarsely observed that the prince watched her as a cat does a mouse. Charles indeed acted everything that a lover in one of the old romances could have done.[2] He once leapt over the walls of her garden, and only retired by the entreaties of the old marquis who then guarded her, and who, falling on his knees, solemnly protested that if the prince spoke to her his head would answer for it. He watched hours in the street to meet with her; and Wilson says he gave such liberal presents to the court, as well as Buckingham to the Spanish beauties, that the Lord Treasurer Middlesex complained repeatedly of their wasteful prodigality.[3] Let us now observe by what mode this match was consented to by the courts of Spain and Rome. Wilson informs us that Charles agreed "That any one should freely propose to him the arguments in favour of the catholic religion, without giving any impediment; but that he would never, directly or indirectly, permit any one to speak to the Infanta against the same." They probably had tampered with Charles concerning his religion. A letter of Gregory XV. to him is preserved in Wilson's life, but its authenticity has been doubted. Olivares said to Buckingham, "You gave me some assurance and hope of the prince's turning catholic." The duke roundly answered that it was false. The Spanish minister, confounded at the bluntness of our English duke, broke from him in a violent rage, and lamented that state matters would not suffer him to do himself justice. This insult was never forgiven; and some time afterwards he attempted to revenge himself on Buckingham, by endeavouring to persuade James that he was at the head of a conspiracy against him. We hasten to conclude these anecdotes, not to be found in the pages of Hume and Smollett.—Wilson says that both kingdoms rejoiced:—"Preparati
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