Tagged ‘John Stow’

Today is Crownation Day!

November 17th, 2012 by KM Wall


Elizabeth's succesion allegory

This is the Lord’s doing and it is marvellous in our eyes.
(Biblical verse reputedly spoken in Latin by Elizabeth I when she received news of her accession to the throne)

In her own words…….

I will be as good unto ye as ever a Queen was unto her people. No will in me can lack, neither do I trust shall there lack any power. And persuade yourselves that for the safety and quietness of you all I will not spare if need be to spend my blood.
(Elizabeth to the Lord Mayor and people of London on the eve of her Coronation)

I shall desire you all, my lords, (chiefly you of the nobility, everyone in his degree and power) to be assistant to me that I, with my ruling, and you with your service, may make a good account to Almighty God and leave some comfort to our posterity on earth.
(Elizabeth at the beginning of her reign)

I have already joined myself in marriage to a husband, namely the kingdom of England.
(Elizabeth to Parliament)

Better beggar woman and single than Queen and married.

Was I not born in this realm? Were my parents born in any foreign country? Is there any cause I should alienate myself from being careful over this country? Is not my kingdom here?
(Elizabeth to Parliament)

There is only one Christ, Jesus, one faith. All else is a dispute over trifles.
(Elizabeth’s response to the Catholic/Protestant divide)

I have no desire to make windows into mens souls
(Again a reference to the Catholic/Protestant issue)

It is monstrous that the feet should direct the head.
(Elizabeth to Parliament)

No prince herein, I confess, can be silver tied or faster bound than I am with the link of your good will.
(Elizabeth to Parliament)

I know I have the body of a weak and feeble woman, but I have the heart and stomach of a king.
(Tilbury speech, 1588. See section on The Spanish Armada)

It would please me best if, at the last, a marble stone shall record that this Queen having lived such and such a time, lived and died a virgin.
(Elizabeth to Parliamentary Delegation)

I know I am but mortal and so therewhilst prepare myself for death, whensoever it shall please God to send it.
(Elizabeth to Parliament in response to the succession issue)

The Queen fell into a deep sleep, and died in the early hours of the 24th of March, 1603. It was a Thursday, the death day of her father, and her sister. It was the eve of the annunciation of the Virgin Mary, perhaps an apt day for the Virgin Queen to die. The Elizabethan calendar was also different to ours, as they still used the Julian calendar – the new year beginning on the 25th of March. Thus the last day of the year 1602 also saw the last hours of the last Tudor monarch. The new year would bring a new reign, that of King James I (James VI of Scotland), a new ruling dynasty (the Stuarts), and a new era in British history. It was with sadness that the Queen’s death was announced on the streets of London the following morning, and witnesses described the eerie silence of the stunned crowd. For almost 45 years they had been ruled by Elizabeth, and knew no other way of life.
When they saw the life-like effigy of the Queen, they wept. John Stow, who attended the funeral wrote:

“Westminster was surcharged with multitudes of all sorts of people in their streets, houses, windows, leads and gutters, that came to see the obsequy, and when they beheld her statue lying upon the coffin, there was such a general sighing, groaning and weeping as the like hath not been seen or known in the memory of man, neither doth any history mention any people, time or state to make like lamentation for the death of their sovereign”


To be a King and wear a crown is a thing more pleasant to them that see it, than it is pleasant to them that bear it.
I were content to hear matters argued and debated pro and contra as all princes must that will understand what is right, yet I look ever as it were upon a plain tablet wherein is written neither partility or prejudice.
There is no jewel, be it of never so rich a price, which I set before this jewel; I mean your love.
Though God hath raised me high, yet this I account the glory of my reign, that I have reigned with your loves.
I have ever used to set the last Judgement Day before mine eyes, and so to rule as I shall be judged to answer before a higher judge.
You may have many a wiser prince sitting in this seat, but you never have had, or shall have, any who loves you better.
It is not my desire to live or to reign longer than my life and reign shall be for your good.

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