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FRANCIS LANCELOTT, ESQ. Queens of England. Vol.1.


Sir John Froissart's Chronicles of England, France, Spain and the Ajoining Countries from the latter part of the reign of Edward II to the coronation of Henry IV in 12 volumes 

Chronicles of Enguerrand De Monstrelet (Sir John Froissart's Chronicles continuation) in 13 volumes 

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Queens of England. Vol.1.
page 425

quer, all in coats of velvet, "with chains of gold, who, after respectfully saluting her, attended her to Rochester, where she tarried in the Bishop's Palace all New Year's day, On hearing of Anne's arrival, the King, who sore desired to see her Grace, resolved to visit her in disguise, that he might steal a first glance, and, as he expressed it to Cromwell, " might nourish love." Attended by only eight gentlemen of his privy chamber, who, like himself, were disguised in marble or greycoloured coats, he set out in the full anticipation of beholding in his extolled German bride a woman of matchless beauty and grace. Immediately he reached Rochester, he sent Sir Anthony Brown, his Master of the Horse, with a polite message to Anne, informing her that he had brought a New Year's gift, which he begged permission to present to her. Sir Anthony, on beholding his future Queen, was struck with her lack of grace and beauty ; but he had the discretion to conceal his disappointment, and leave his royal master to judge for himself. The impatient Henry no sooner entered her presence than he discovered at a glance how he had been deceived by the magic pencil of Holbein. Anne was, indeed, tall and large as heart could wish, but her features, though regular, were coarse and pock-marked, her complexion was dark and muddy, her manners ungraceful, her figure ill-proportioned. In tho bitterness of his disappointment, he shrunk back; and it was only after earnest persuasion that he would permit himself to be announced. Anne, it appears, was equally displeased with the person and deportment of Henry. He was burly, diseased, and bloated, and, being in an ill-mood, his manner was rude and repulsive. However, when, on his approach, she went on her knees and greeted him " most humblewise," he condescended to raise her, and kiss her; and, according to Hall, he spent all that afternoon in communing and devising with her, and supped with her in the evening; but other authorities declare that he remained in her company only a few minutes—his musical ear being so disgusted with her high Dutch—she could speak no English, ho no Dutch—that he would not attempt to commune with her through an interpreter, nor present to her the New Year's gift, which consisted of " a partlet of sable skins to wear round the neck, and a mufficy furred, which he sent the next morning by Sir Anthony Brown, with as cold a message as might be." On quitting her presence he retired to his chamber, sent for the lords who accompanied him, and in an outburst of passion accused them of wilfully deceiving him in the matter. To the Lord Admiral he said, "How like you this woman ? Do you think her so personal fair and beautiful as report has been made to me of her? I pray you tell me true ?" The Admiral answered evasively, " I take her not for fair, but to be of a brown complexion." "Alas!" said the King, "whomshall men trust! I promise you I see no such grace and beauty in her as hath been shown me of her by pictures or report. I am ashamed that many have praised her as they have done, and I like her not." Henry returned to Greenwich very melancholy. To Lord Russell, Sir Anthony Brown, and Sir Anthony Denny, he bitterly bewailed his fate. Denny told him that persons in humble life hail this advantage over princes, that whilst they could choose wives for themselves, princes must take such as were brought to them. The King, nothing consoled by this reasoning, when he saw Cromwell, inveighed with his usual brutality against those who, by false representations, had induced him to set his heart upon Anne, swearing that they Lad brought over to him not a woman, but a great Elandcrs mare. Cromwell endeavoured to cast the blame on the Earl of Southampton, for whom he had no great regard ; and said, when he found Anne so different from what reports and pictures had made her, he should have stayed her at Calais, and given the King notice thereof; but the Admiral boldly rejoined, that he had not been invested with such powers. His orders were

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