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desires, all good counsels, and all just works do proceed, direct and assist you in the administration and exercise of all those powers which He hath given you :
besides these-the other 'emblems laid nobly on her' are 'THE SPURS AND SWORD,' in Sect. ix.; 'THE ROYAL ROBE, AND ORB' (i.e., the ball,' see K. Henry V., Act iv. Sc. 1, and K. Henry VIII., Act ii. Sc. 3) with the cross above it, to signify 'that the whole world is subject to the power and empire of Christ our Redeemer,' in Sect. x.; THE RING, the ensign of kingly dignity, and of defence of the Catholic Faith;' and 'THE ROYAL SCEPTRE, the ensign of kingly power and justice,' in Sect. xi. After the crowning, comes first THE PRESENTING* OF THE HOLY BIBLE,' in Sect. xiii.; and then the 'TE DEUM,' in Sect. xiv.; followed by 'THE INTHRONIZATION.' It is scarcely necessary to add that the Service is concluded with the celebration of the Holy Eucharist, for which the Queen 'offers' the bread and wine.
It will have been noticed in the preceding extracts that the Coronation 'Ring' is described as 'the ensign of kingly dignity, &c.;' and before I pass on to other matters I am tempted to observe, in reference to that description, that the Rubric requires the Ring to be one 'in which a table jewel is enchased,' meaning, I suppose, a flat jewel capable of serving as a seal. In that same play of King Henry VIII. we
*The presenting of the Bible was omitted at the coronation of James II.! See Macaulay's History, vol. ii. p. 49.
+ Such rings, I imagine, were always signet rings; and the wearing of
have the King's ring given to Cranmer, Act v. Sc. 1, and presented by him, Sc. 2, as a security against the machinations of Gardiner and others of the Council who were plotting to destroy him. It was anciently the custom for every monarch, as Mr. Reed remarks, to have a ring, the temporary possession of which invested the holder with the same authority as the owner himself could exercise. And not for every monarch only in King Richard II. the Duke of York gives this order to his servant :
Sirrah, get thee to Plasy, to my sister Gloster ;
Bid her send me presently a thousand pound:
Act ii. Sc. 2.
There is a curious relic of the same custom still kept up in the ancient College of William of Wykeham at Winchester. When the captain of the school petitions the head master for a holiday-and obtains it he receives from him a ring, in token of the indulgence granted, which he wears during the holiday, and returns to the head master when it is over. The inscription upon the ring was formerly 'Potentiam fero, geroque.' It is now 'Commendat rarior* usus.'
them is a custom of great antiquity.
Compare Gen. xxxviii. 18, xli. 42;
Esther iii. 10, 12, viii. 8; Jerem. xxii. 24; Daniel vi. 17.
*From Juvenal, Sat. xi. 208.
'Voluptates commendat rarior usus.'
Our poet furnishes a parallel quotation, less concise indeed, but still more apposite:
Imbued as the mind of our poet was with Scriptural principles, we shall not be surprised to find that he places upon the very highest ground both the prerogative and the responsibility of kings and governors. If, on the one hand, he would warn us that
Divinity doth hedge a king;
Hamlet, Act iv. Sc. 3.
Kings are earth's gods;
Pericles, Act i. Sc. I.
and 'deputies,' though 'unworthy,' of God Himself, King Henry VI., 2nd Part, Act iii. Sc. 2;* that the person of a king is 'the Lord's anointed temple' (1 Sam. xxiv. 10), Macbeth, Act ii. Sc. 3; and that 'The King's name is a tower of strength,' King Richard III., Act v. Sc. 3, even as 'the name of the Lord is a strong tower,' Prov. xviii. 10:—on the other hand, he does not fail to teach that
He who the sword of Heaven will bear,
Measure for Measure, Act iii. Sc. 2.
where we are reminded of S. Paul, Rom. xiii. 4, and
II. Sam. xxiii. 3.
In like manner, if on the one hand he teaches that
'If all the year were playing holidays,
To sport would be as tedious as to work :
But when they seldom come, they wished for come.'
K. Henry IV., 1st Part, Act i. Sc 2.
Compare the quotation from his 52nd sonnet, above, p. 22, the fine point of seldom pleasure.'
* See also the speech of K. Richard II., quoted above, p. 107, and that of the Bishop of Carlisle, quoted p. 234.
there can be no security for usurped and illegitimate authority :
For though usurpers sway the rule awhile,
Yet Heavens are just, and time suppresseth wrongs :King Henry VI., 3rd Part, Act iii. Sc. 3. on the other hand, he warns us that the loyalty and obedience which are due to lawful governors must be duly paid; for
Every subject's duty is the King's.
King Henry V., Act vi. Sc. 1. That it is an unhappy thing for a country when its king is under age is a thought which might occur to many minds; but that the thought should be expressed in words so precisely parallel as those which I am about to quote could not have happened without actual contact of the mind of the one writer with the mind of the other :
Woe to thee, O land, when thy king is a child.
Ecclesiastes, x. 16.
Woe to that land that's governed by a child.
K. Richard III., Act ii. Sc. 3.
See also King Henry VI., 1st Part, Act iv. Sc. I—
When sceptres are in children's hands.
Among the countless marvels of Shakspeare's mind, it is not the least remarkable that he appears equally at home in regard to matters that must have been alien from his own experience and to those that came within it. For instance, whether he has to speak of the circumstances of land or sea, of peace or war, his sentiments and descriptions are equally just and valuable; although of the sea he had probably seen
little, and of war he could have known nothing from personal observation. It would be beyond my purpose to enter into this subject; and I shall content myself by a general reference on the one hand to The Tempest, and on the other to King Henry V. and King Richard III.
But there are two points connected with the mention of war which belong fairly to the design I have had in view, and upon which, therefore, I shall venture to add a few words. One is, that war is a punishment sent by God. So the Bible teaches; see Ezek. v. and xiv. 21. And so Shakspeare teaches; see King Henry V., Act iv. Sc. 1.
War is His (God's) beadle; war is His vengeance.
And again, see King Henry VI., 2nd Part, Act v. Sc. 2:
O! war, thou son of hell,
Whom angry Heavens do make their minister,
Throw in the frozen bosom of our part
Hot coals of vengeance!
where Mr. Steevens has remarked that the last phrase is Scriptural, and he quotes Psalm cxl. 10 in the Prayer Book version :—
Let hot burning coals fall upon them!
The other point is the lawfulness of war. too, the Bible teaches; see Eccles. iii. 8, Luke iii.
14, Acts x. And so Shakspeare teaches-with the just and necessary provision, if the cause be
* This clause is omitted by Mr. Bowdler.