ENGLAND UNDER THE YORKISTS. 1460-1485. Illustrated from Contemporary Sources by ISOBEL D.THORNLEY, M.A., Assistant in the Department of History, University College, London. With a Preface byA.F. POLLARD, M.A., Litt.D. Crown 8vo.LONGMANS, GREEN AND CO., LONDON, NEW YORK, BOMBAY, CALCUTTA, AND MADRAS.HENRY VIII.BYA.F. POLLARD, M.A.Professor Of Constitutional History At University College, London; Examiner In Modern History In TheUniversities Of Oxford And London; Author Of "A Life Of Cranmer," "England Under Protector Somerset,"Etc., Etc.
LONGMANS, GREEN AND CO 39 PATERNOSTER ROW, LONDON FOURTH AVENUE & 30thSTREET, NEW YORK BOMBAY, CALCUTTA, AND MADRAS 1919
First published by Messrs. Goupil & Co. in June, 1902, with numerous illustrations. New Edition, May, 1905. Reprinted, January, 1913, and October, 1919.
PREFACE. (p. v)It is perhaps a matter rather for regret than for surprise that so few attempts have been made to describe, as awhole, the life and character of Henry VIII. No ruler has left a deeper impress on the history of his country, ordone work which has been the subject of more keen and lasting contention. Courts of law are still debating theintention of statutes, the tenor of which he dictated; and the moral, political, and religious, are as much indispute as the legal, results of his reign. He is still the Great Erastian, the protagonist of laity against clergy.His policy is inextricably interwoven with the high and eternal dilemma of Church and State; and it iswell-nigh impossible for one who feels keenly on these questions to treat the reign of Henry VIII. in areasonably judicial spirit. No period illustrates more vividly the contradiction between morals and politics. Inour desire to reprobate the immorality of Henry's methods, we are led to deny their success; or, in ourappreciation of the greatness of the ends he achieved, we seek to excuse the means he took to achieve them.As with his policy, so with his character. (p. vi) There was nothing commonplace about him; his good and hisbad qualities alike were exceptional. It is easy, by suppressing the one or the other, to paint him a hero or avillain. He lends himself readily to polemic; but to depict his character in all its varied aspects, extenuatingnothing nor setting down aught in malice, is a task of no little difficulty. It is two centuries and a half sinceLord Herbert produced his
Life and Reign of Henry VIII
. The late Mr. Brewer, in his prefaces to the firstfour volumes of the
Letters and Papers of the Reign of Henry VIII.
, published under the direction of theMaster of the Rolls, dealt adequately with the earlier portion of Henry's career. But Mr. Brewer died when hiswork reached the year 1530; his successor, Dr. James Gairdner, was directed to confine his prefaces to thelater volumes within the narrowest possible limits; and students of history were deprived of the prospect of asatisfactory account of Henry's later years from a writer of unrivalled learning.[Footnote 1: The edition cited in the text is that of 1672.]Henry's reign, from 1530 onwards, has been described by the late Mr. Froude in one of the most brilliant andfascinating masterpieces of historical literature, a work which still holds the field in popular, if not inscholarly, estimation. But Mr. Froude does not begin until Henry's reign was half over, until his character had
Henry VIII., by A. F. Pollard3