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6 arithmetike, musike, geometrie, and astronomie.' The Trivium was grammar, rhetoric and logic.
1. The chief places of education for the sons of our nobility and gentry were the houses of other nobles, and specially those of the Chancellors of our Kings, men not only able to read and write, talk Latin and French themselves, but in whose hands the Court patronage lay. As carly as Henry the Second's time (A.D. 1154-62), if not before', this system prevailed. A friend notes that FitzStephen says of Becket:
“ The nobles of the realm of England and of neighbouring kingdoms used to send their sons to serve the Chancellor, whom he trained with honourable bringing-up and learning; and when they had received the knight's belt, sent them back with honour to their fathers and kindred : some he used to keep. The king himself, his master, entrusted to him his son, the heir of the realm, to be brought up; whom he had with him, with many sons of nobles of the same age, and their proper retinue and masters and proper servants in the honour due.”— Vita S. Thomae, pp. 189, 190, ed. Giles.
Roger de Hoveden, a Yorkshireman, who was a clerk or secretary to Henry the Second, says of Richard the Lionheart's unpopular chancellor, Longchamps the Bishop of Ely:
"All the sons of the nobles acted as his servants, with downcast looks, nor dared they to look upward towards the heavens unless it so happened that they were addressing him; and if they attended to anything else they were pricked with a goad, which their lord held in his hand, fully mindful of his grandfather of pious memory, who, being of servile condition in the district of Beauvais, had, for his occupation, to guide the plough and whip up
and who at length, to gain his liberty, fled to the Norman territory." (Riley's Hoveden, ii. 232, quoted in The Cornhill Magazine, vol. xv. p. 165.)
1 It was in part a principle of Anglo-Saxon society at the earliest period, and attaches itself to that other universal principle of fosterage. A Teuton chieftain always gathered round him a troop of young retainers in his hall who were voluntary servants, and they were, in fact, almost the only servants he would allow to touch his person. T. Wright.
2 Compare Skelton's account of Wolsey's treatment of the Nobles, in Why come ye not to Courte (quoted in Ellis's Letters, v. ii. p. 3). "Our barons be so bolde,
For drede of the maystife cur,
For drede of the boucher's dog
“ For and this curre do gnarl, Dare not look out a dur
They must stande all afar
All Chancellors were not brutes of this kind, but we must remember that young people were subjected to rough treatment in early days. Even so late as Henry VI.'s time, Agnes Paston sends to London on the 28th of January, 1457, to pray the master of her son of 15, that if the boy "hath not done well, nor will not amend,” his master Greenfield “will truly belash him till he will amend.” And of the same lady's treatment of her marriageable daughter, Elizabeth, Clere writes on the 29th of June, 1454,
"She (the daughter) was never in so great sorrow as she is nowa-days, for she may not speak with no man, whosoever come, ne not may see nor speak with my man, nor with servants of her mother's, but that she beareth her on hand otherwise than she meaneth ; and she hath since Easter the most part been beaten once in the week or twice, and sometimes twice on a day, and her head broken in two or three places." (v. i. p. 50, col. 1, ed. 1840.)
The treatment of Lady Jane Grey by her parents was also very severe, as she told Ascham, though she took it meekly, as her sweet nature was :
“ One of the greatest benefites that God ever gave me, is, that he sent me so sharpe and severe Parentes, and so jentle a scholemaster. For when I am in presence either of father or mother, whether I speake, kepe silence, sit, stand, or go, eate, drinke, be merie or sad, be sewyng, plaiyng, dauncing, or doing anie thing els, I must do it, as it were, in soch weight, mesure, and number, even so perfitelie as God made the world, or els I am so sharplie taunted, so cruellie threatened, yea presentlie some tymes, with pinches, nippes, and bobbes, and other waies which I will not name for the honor I beare them, so without measure misordered, that I thinke my self in hell till tyme cum that I must go to M. Elmer, who teacheth me so jentlie, so pleasantlie, with soch faire allurementes to learning, that I thinke all the tyme nothing whiles I am with him. And when I am called from him, I fall on weeping.”—The Scholemaster, ed. Mayor.
The inordinate beating' of boys by schoolmasters-whom he
To holde up their hand at the bar. Like an Ox or a Bul.
Their wittes, he sayth, are dul ;
He sayth they have no brayne And shakes them by the eare,
Their estate to maintaine : And bryngs them in such feare ;
And make to bowe the knee He bayteth them lyke a beare,
Before his Majestie.” Compare also the quotation from Piers Plowman's Crede, under No 5, p. xlv, and Palsgrave
, 1530 a.v., "I mase, I stonysshe, Je bestourne. You mased the boyo 80 sore with beatyng that he coulde not speake a worde.' See a gross instance of
calls in different places sharp, fond, & lewd ' _Ascham denounces strongly in the first book of his Scholemaster, and he contrasts their folly in beating into their scholars the hatred of learning with the practice of the wise riders who by gentle allurements breed them up in the love of riding. Indeed, the origin of his book was Sir Wm. Cecil's saying to him “I have strange news brought me this morning, that divers scholars of Eton be run away from the school for fear of beating.”
Sir Peter Carew, says Mr Froude, being rather a troublesome boy, was chained in the Haccombe dog-kennel till he ran away from it.
But to return to the training of young men in nobles' houses. I take the following from Fiddes's Appendix to his Life of Wolsey :
John de Athon, upon the Constitutions of Othobon, tit. 23, in respect to the Goods of such who dyed intestate, and upon the Word Burones, has the following Passage concerning Grodsted Bishop of Lincoln (who died 9th Oct., 1253),
“Robert surnamed Grodsted of holy memory, late Bishop of Lincoln, when King Henry asked him, as if in wonder, where he learnt the Nurture in which he had instructed the sons of nobles (&) peers of the Realm, whom he kept about him as pages (domisellos),
-since he was not descended from a noble lineage, but from humble (parents)—is said to have answered fearlessly, 'In the house or guest
cruelty cited from Erasmus's Letters, by Staunton, in his Great Schools of England, p. 179-80.
1" And therfore do I the more lament that soch (hard) wittes commonlie be either kepte from learning by fond fathers, or bet from learning by lewde scholemasters," ed. Mayor, p. 19. But Ascham reproves parents for paying their masters so badly: “it is pitie, that commonlie more care is had, yea and that emonges verie wise men, to finde out rather a cunnynge man for their horse than a cunnyng man for their children. They say nay in worde, but they do so in deede. For, to the one they will gladlie give a stipend of 200. Crounes by yeare, and loth to offer to the other, 200. shillinges. God, that sitteth in heauen, laugheth their choice to skorne, and rewardetb their liberalitie as it should : for he suffereth them to have tame and well ordered horse, but wilde and unfortunate Children." Ib. p. 20.
2-2 Sanctæ memorice Robertum Cognominatum Grodsted dudum Lincolniendem Episcopum, Regi Henrico quasi admirando, cum interrogavit, ubi Noraturam didicit, quà Filios Nobilium Procerum Regni, quos secum habuit Domisellos, instruxerat, cum non de nobili prosapia, sed de simplicibus traxisset Originem, fertur intrepide respondisse, In Domo seu Hospitio Majorum Regum quam sit Rex Angliæ ; Quia Regum, David, Salomonis, & aliorum, vivendi morem didicerat ex Intelligentia scripturarum.
3 DOMICELLUS, Domnicellus, diminutivum a Domnus. Gloss. antiquæ MSS. : Heriles, Domini minores, quod possumus aliter dicere Domnicelli, Ugutio : Domicelli et Domicellæ dicuntur, quando pulchri juvenes magnatum sunt sicut servientes. Sic porro primitus appellabant magnatum, atque adeo Regum filios. Du Cange.
chambers of greater kings than the King of England '; because he had learnt from understanding the scriptures the manner of life of David, Solomon, & other Kings 2."
Reyner, in his Apostol. Bened. from Saunders acquaints us, that the Sons of the Nobility were placed with Whiting Abbot of Glastenbury for their Education, who was contemporary with the Cardinal, and which Method of Education was continued for some Time afterward.
There is in the Custody of the present Earl of Stafford, a Nobleman of the greatest Humanity and Goodness, an Original of Instructions, by the Earl of Arundell, written in the Year 1620, for the Benefit of his younger Son, the Earl of Stafford's Grandfather, under this Title; Instructions for you my Son William, how to behave
your self at Norwich. In these Instructions is the following paragraph, “You shall in all Things reverence honour and obey my Lord Bishop of Norwich, as you would do any of your Parents, esteeminge whatsoever He shall tell or Command you, as if your Grandmother of Arundell, your · Mother, or my self, should say it; and in all things esteem your self
my Lord's Page; a breeding which youths of my house far superior to you were accustomed unto, as my Grandfather of Norfolk, and his Brother my good Uncle of Northampton were both bred as Pages with Bishopps, 8c."
Sir Thomas More, who was born in 1480, was brought up in the house of Cardinal Morton. Roper says that he was
“received into the house of the right reverend, wise, and learned prelate Cardinal Morton, where, though he was young of years, yet would he at Christmas-tide suddenly sometimes step in among the players, and never studying for the matter make a part of his own there presently among them, which made the lookers on more sport than all the players beside. In whose wit and towardness the Cardinal much delighting would say of him unto the nobles that divers times dined with him, This child here waiting at the table, whosoever shall live to see it, will prove a marvellous man. Whereupon for his better furtherance in learning he placed him at Oxford, &c." (Roper's Life of More, ed. Singer, 1822, p. 3.)
Cresacre More in his Life of More (ed. 1828, p. 17) states the same thing more fully, and gives the remark of the Cardinal more accurately, thus “that that boy there waiting on him, whoever should live to see it, would prove a marvellous rare man.
Through Wolsey's household, says Professor Brewer, almost all the
1 Mr Bruce sends me the More extracts.
Officials of Henry the Eighth's time passed. Cavendish, in his Life of Wolsey (vol. i. p. 38, ed. Singer, 1825) says of the Cardinal, “And at meals, there was continually in his chamber a board kept for his Chamberlains, and Gentlemen Ushers, having with them a mess of the young Lords, and another for gentlemen.” Among these young Lords, we learn at p. 57, was
"my Lord Percy, the son and heir of the Earl of Northumberland, [who] then attended upon the Lord Cardinal, and was also his servitor; and when it chanced the Lord Cardinal at any time to repair to the court, the Lord Percy would then resort for his pastime unto the queen's chamber, and there would fall in dalliance among the queen's maidens, being at the last more conversant with Mistress Anne Boleyn than with any other; so that there grew such a secret love between them that, at length they were insured together, intending to marry 1."
Among the persons daily attendant upon Wolsey in his house, down-lying and up-rising, Cavendish enumerates “ of Lords nine or ten, who had each of them allowed two servants; and the Earl of Derby had allowed five men” (p. 36-7). On this Singer prints a note, which looks like a guess, signed Growe, “Those Lords that were placed in the great and privy chambers were Wards, and as such paid for their board and education.” It will be seen below that he had a particular officer called “Instructor of his Wards” (Cavendish, p. 38, 1. 2). Why I suppose the note to be a guess is, because at p. 33 Cavendish has stated that Wolsey “had also a great number daily attending upon him, both of noblemen and worthy gentlemen, of great estimation and possessions, with no small number of the tallest yeomen that he could get in all his realm ; in so much that well was that nobleman and gentleman that might prefer any tall and comely yeoman unto his service.”
In the household of the Earl of Northumberland in 1511 were ".. yong gentlemen at their fryndes fynding, in my lords house for
1 How Wolsey broke off the insurance is very well told. Mistress Anne was “sent home again to her father for a season; whereat she smoked" ; but she " revoked unto the Court,” and “after she knew the king's pleasure and the great love that he bare her in the bottom of his stomach, then she began to look very hault and stout, having all manner of jewels or rich apparel that might be gotten with money” (p. 67).
2 Under the heading “Gentylmen of Houshold, viz. Kervers, Sewars, Cupberers, and Gentillmen Waiters” in the North. Household Books, p. 40, we find