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Drury-lane, Aug. 30, 1737, in sir John Loverule, in the " Devil to Pay."
He afterwards, on the 8th of Jan. 1739, married lady Henrietta Herbert, daughter of James earl Waldegrave, and widow of lord Edward Herberi, second son of the marquis of Powis. She died 31st of May 1753. On his marriage he quitted the stage for a few years. He afterwards returned to Drury-lane, and in 1744 to Coventgarden, where he remained until 1758. In that year he engaged with Mr. Garrick, and continued with him until 1759, when baving married a daughter of Mr. Rich, he was engaged at Covent-garden, where, on the death of that gentleman, he became manager. His first appearance there was on the 10th of Oct. 1759, in the character of Macheath, which, aided by Miss Brent in Polly, ran fifty-two nights. In 1768 he retired from the theatre, and died universally respected at the age
seventy-four, in 1791. His remains were deposited in the vault of the church at Hampton in Middlesex. He was long the deserved favourite of the public ; and whoever remembers the variety of his abilities, as actor and singer, in oratorios and operas, both serious and comic, will testify to his having stood unrivalled in fame and excellence. This praise, however, great as it was, fell short of what his private merits acquired. He had one of the sincerest hearts joined to the most polished manners. He was a most delightful companion, whether as host or guest. His time, his pen, and purse, were devoted to the alleviation of every distress that fell within the compass of his power, and through life he fulfilled the relative duties of son, brother, guardian, friend, and husband, with the most exemplary truth and tenderness.'
BEATON, or BETON (DAVID), archbishop of St. Andrew's in Scotland, and cardinal of the Roman church, was born 1494, and educated in the university of St. An-. drew's. He was afterwards sent over to the university of Paris, where he studied divinity; and when he attained a proper age, entered into orders. In 1519 he was appointed resident at the court of France; about the same time his uncle James Beaton, archbishop of Glasgow, conferred upon him the rectory of Campsay; and in 1523 this uncle, being then archbishop of St. Andrew's, gave him the abbacy of Aberbrothock, or Arbroath. David re
1 From the last edition of this Dict.-Gent. Mag. 1791.
turned to Scotland in 1525, and in 1528 was made lord privy seal. In 1533 he was sent again to France, in conjunction with sir Thomas Erskine, to confirm the leagues subsisting between the two kingdoms, and to bring about a marriage for king James V. with Magdalene, daughter of the king of France; but the princess being in a very
bad state of health, the marriage could not then take effect. During his residence, however, at the French court, he received many favours from his Christian majesty. King James having gone over to France, had the princess Magdalene given him in person, whom he espoused on the first of January 1537. Beaton returned to Scotland with their majesties, where they arrived the 29th of May; but the death of the queen happening the July following, he was sent over again to Paris, to negotiate a second marriage for the king with the lady Mary, daughter to the duke of Guise ; and during his stay at the court of France, he was consecrated bishop of Mirepoix. All things being settled in regard to the marriage, in the month of June, he embarked with the new queen for Scotland, where they arrived in July: the nuptials were celebrated at St. Andrew's, and the February following the coronation was performed with great splendour and magnificence in the abbey church of Holyrood-house.
Beaton, though at this time only coadjutor of St. Andrew's, yet had all the power and authority of the archbishop; and in order to strengthen the catholic interest in Scotland, pope Paul III. raised him to a cardinalship, by the title of St. Stephen in Monte Cælo, Dec. 20, 1538. King Henry VIII. having intelligence of the ends proposed by the pope in creating him a cardinal, sent a very able minister to king James, with particular instructions for a deep scheme to procure the cardinal's disgrace; but it did not take effect. A few months after, the old archbishop dying, the cardinal succeeded ; and it was upon this promotion that he began to shew his warm and persecuting zeal for the church of Rome. Soon after his instalment, he got together, in the cathedral of St. Andrew's, a great confluence of persons of the first rank, both clergy and laity; to whom, from a throne erected for the purpose, he made a speech, representing to them the danger wherewith the church was threatened by the increase of heretics, who had the boldness to profess their opinions even in the king's court; where, said he, they find but too great countenance a
and he mentioned by name sir John Borthwick, whom he had caused to be cited to that diet, for dispersing heretical books, and holding several opinions contrary to the doctrine of the Roman church. Then the articles of accusatio:2 were read against him, and sir John appearing neither in person nor by proxy, was declared a heretic, his goods confiscated, and himself burnt in effigy. Sir John retired to England, where he was kindly received by king Henry, who sent him into Germany, in his name, to conclude a treaty with the protestant princes of the empire. Sir John Borthwick was not the only person proceeded against for heresy; several others were also prosecuted, and among the rest, George Buchanan, the celebrated poet and historian : and as the king left all to the management of the cardinal, it is difficult to say to what lengths such a furious zealot might have gone, had not the king's death put a stop to his arbitrary proceedings.
When the king died, there being none so near him as the cardinal, it was suggested by his enemies that he forged bis will; and it was set aside, notwithstanding he had it proclaimed at the cross of Edinburgh, in order to establisha the regency in the earls of Argyle, Huntley, Arran, and himself. He was expressly excluded from the government, and the earl of Arran was declared sole regent during the minority of queen Mary. This was chiefly effected by the noblemen in the English interest, who, after having sent the cardinal prisoner to Blackness-castle, managed the public affairs as they pleased. Things did not remain long, however, in this situation ; for the ambitious enterprising cardinal, though confined, raised so strong a party, that the regent, not knowing how to proceed, began to dislike his former system, and having at length resolved to abandou it, released the cardinal, and became reconciled to him. Upon the young queen's coronation, the cardinal was again admitted of the council, and had the high office of chancellor conferred upon him; and such was now his influence with the regent, that he got him to solicit the court of Rome to appoint him legate à latere from the pope, which was accordingly done.
His authority being now firmly established, he began again to promote the popish cause with his utmost e forts. Towards the end of 1545 he visited some parts of his diocese, attended with the lord governor, and others of the nobility, and ordered several persons to be executed for
heresy. In 1546 he summoned a provincial assembly of the clergy at the Black friars in Edinburgh, in order to concert measures for restraining heresy. How far they proceeded is uncertain; but it is generally allowed that the cardinal was diverted from the purposes he had then in hand, by information he received of Mr. George Wishart, the most famous protestant preacher in Scotland, being at the house of Mr. Cockburn at Ormiston. The cardinal, by an order from the governor, which was indeed with difficulty obtained, caused him to be apprehended. He was for some time confined in the castle of Edinburgh, and removed from thence to the castle of St. Andrew's. The cardinal, having resolved to proceed without delay to his trial, summoned the prelates to St. Andrew's. At this meeting the archbishop of Glasgow gave as his opinion, that application should be made to the governor, to grant a commission to some nobleman to try so famous a prisoner, that the whole blame might not lie upon the clergy. "He was accordingly applied to; and notwithstanding his refusal, and his message to the cardinal, not to precipitate his trial, and notwithstanding Mr. Wishart's appeal, as being the governor's prisoner, to a temporal jurisdiction; yet the furious prelate went on with the trial, and this innocent gentleman was condemned to be burnt at St. Andrew's. He died with amazing firmness and resolution : and it is averred by some writers, that be prophesied in the midst of the flames, not only the approaching death of the cardinal, but the circumstances also, that should attend it. Buchanan's account is as follows: After relating the manner in which Mr. Wishart spent the morning of his execution, he proceeds thus: “A while after two executioners were sent to him by the cardinal ; one of them put a black linen shirt upon him, and the other bound many little bags of gun-powder to all the parts of his body. In this dress they brought him forth, and commanded him to stay in the governor's outer chamber, and at the same time they erected a wooden scaffold in the court before the castle, and made up a pile of wood. The windows and balconies over against it were all hung with tapestry and silk hangings, with cushions for the cardinal and his train, to behold and take pleasure in the joyful sight, even the torture of an innocent man ; thus courting the favour of the people as the author of so notable a deed. There was also a great guard of soldiers, not so much to secure the execution, as for a vain ostentatiou of power :
and beside, brass guns were placed up and down in all convenient places of the castle. Thus, while the trumpets sounded, George was brought forth, mounted the scaffold, and was fastened with a cord to the stake, and having scarce leave to pray for the church of God, the executioners fired the wood, which immediately taking hold of the powder that was tied about him, blew it up into flame and smoke. The governor of the castle, who stood so near that he was singed with the flame, exhorted him in a few words to be of good cheer, and to ask pardon of God for his offences. To whom he replied, “This flame occasions trouble to my body indeed, but it hath in no wise broken my spirit; but he, who now looks down so proudly upon me from yonder lofty place (pointing to the cardinal) shall ere long be as ignominiously thrown down, as now he proudly lolls at his ease.' Having thus spoken, they straitened the rope which was tied about his neck, and so strangled him ; his body in a few hours being consumed to ashes in the flame.”
This prophecy, however, is called in question by others, who treat it as a story invented after the cardinal's death. Archbishop Spotswood and Mr. Petrie follow Buchanan in regard to the circumstances of Mr. Wishart's death and his prophecy. On the other side, Mr. Keith suggests that the story is very doubtful, if not false.
“ I confess," says he, “I give but small credit to this, and to some other persons that suffered for religion in our country, and which upon that account I have all along omitted to narrate. I own I think them ridiculous enough, and seemingly contrived, at least magnified, on purpose to render the judges and clergymen of that time odious and despicable in the
of And as to this passage concerning Mr. Wishart, it may be noticed, that there is not one word of it to be met with in the first edition of Mr. Knox's History; and if the thing had been true in fact, I cannot see how Mr. Knox, who was so good an acquaintance of Mr. Wishart's, and no farther distant from the place of his execution than East Lothian, and who continued some months along with the murderers of cardinal Beaton in the castle of St. Andrew's, could either be ignorant of the story, or neglect in history so remarkable a prediction. And it has even its own weight, that sir David Lindsay, who lived at that time, and wrote a poem called The tragedy of cardinal Beaton,' in which he rakes together all the worst VOL. IV.