She even stooped to guard against any possible projects of Philip by fresh negotiations for a marriage with one of the Austrian archdukes. But the negotiations proved as fruitless as before, while Scotland moved boldly forward in its new career. A Parliament which assembled at the opening of 1568 confirmed the deposition of the Queen, and made Catholic worship punishable with the pain of death.
In a firm hope of this, I commend myself to the infinite mercy of God. "Your majesty's most faithful vassal and servant, "BRUSSELS, June 5, 1568, near my last moments."
A letter, drawn up and signed by his own hand, recited; in brief and striking language, the history of his campaign in 1568, and of his subsequent efforts in the sacred cause. It was now necessary, he said, that others besides himself should partake of his sacrifices. This he stated plainly and eloquently. The document was in truth a letter asking arms for liberty.
Here he remained imprisoned for eight or nine months in a high tower, with no attendant save a young page, Arthur de Munter, who had accompanied him from the Netherlands. Eight men-at-arms were expressly employed to watch over him and to prevent his escape. One day towards the middle of July, 1568, a band of pilgrims, some of them in Flemish attire, went through the streets of Segovia.
To an earnest autograph letter, in which the Emperor, on the 2nd of March, 1568, made a last effort to save the illustrious prisoners, he replied, that "the whole world would at last approve his conduct, but that, at any rate, he would not act differently, even if he should risk the loss of the provinces, and if the sky should fall on his head."
At last, the 2nd May, 1568, the queen was awakened by the blowing of a horn: uneasy as to what it announced, she slipped on a cloak and ran to the window, where Mary Seyton joined her directly. A rather numerous band of horsemen had halted on the side of the lake, displaying the Douglas pennon, and three boats were rowing together and vying with each other to fetch the new arrivals.
Mr Selwyn had called upon me once or twice, and I had received my legacy with interest; deducting the legacy duty of 50 pounds, it came to 458 pounds. I had, therefore, the following sums in all: 230 pounds of my savings; 310 pounds for the wardrobe and laces, 570 pounds for the jewels, and 458 pounds for the legacy, amounting in all to 1568 pounds.
The difficulties of the Catholics were increased by the coming, in 1568, of Mary Queen of Scots to England, where she became a permanent centre of Catholic disaffection and hopes; by the Rebellion of the North in 1569; and by the papal bull of deposition of the queen in 1570.
The Emperor, in answer, assured the electoral envoys that he had taken the affair to heart, and had resolved to despatch his own brother, the Archduke Charles, on a special mission to Spain. Accordingly, on the 21st October, 1568, the Emperor presented his brother with an ample letter of instructions.
He afterwards aided his royal mistress to escape from Lochleven Castle, in 1568, and conducted her to Niddry Castle, his own seat. When, in gratitude for his fidelity, Mary would have created him an Earl, Lord Seaton declined the honour, and preferred his existing rank as Premier Baron of Scotland.
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