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annoyance. Henry's envoys brought with determined now to mortify his flesh in them the bishops' appeal, and renewed earnest. When settled in his new life at the demand for cardinal legates to be Sens, he rose at daybreak, prayed in his sent to end the quarrel. This time the oratory, said mass, and prayed and wept pope decided that the legates should go again. Five times each day and night carrying with them powers to take off his chaplain flogged him. His food was Becket's censures. He prohibited Beck- bread and water, his bed the floor. A et himself from pursuing his threats fur- hair shirt was not enough without hair ther till the cardinals' arrival. To Hen- drawers which reached his knees, and ry he sent a private letter—which, how- both were worn till they swarmed with ever, he permitted him to show if circum- vermin.* The cardinals approached, stances made it necessary - declaring and the prospect grew hourly blacker. beforehand that any sentences which the The pope rebuked Lewis for the war. archbishop might issue against himself The opportunity of the cardinals' presor his subjects should be void. *
ence was to be used for restoration of The humiliation was terrible ; Becket's peace. Poor as Becket was, he could victims were free, and even rewarded. not approach these holy beings on their John of Oxford came back from Rome accessible side. “The Cardinal of Pavia,' with the Deanery of Salisbury. Worst said John of Salisbury, 'thinks only of of all, the cardinals were coming, and the king's money, and has no fear of those the most dreaded of the whole God in him. Cardinal Otho is better : body, Cardinal Otho and Cardinal Wil- Romanus tomen et cardinalis (but he is a liam of Pavia. One of them, said John Roman and a cardinal). If we submit of Salisbury, was light and uncertain, the our cause to them, we lose it to a certainother crafty and false, and both made up ty. If we refuse we offend the King of of avarice. These were the ministers of France.' The Cardinal of Pavia wrote the Holy See, for whose pretensions to announce to Becket his arrival in Becket was fighting. This was his esti- France and the purpose of his mission. mate of them when they were to try his Becket replied with a violent letter, of own cause. His letters at this moment which he sent a copy to John of Saliswere filled with despair. 'Ridicule has bury, but despatched it before his friend fallen on me,' he said, 'and shame on could stop him. John of Salisbury the pope. I am to be obeyed no longer. thought that the archbishop had lost his I am betrayed and given to destruction. senses. 'Compare the cardinal's letter My deposition is a settled thing. Of and your answer to it,' he said. "What this, at least, let the pope assure him- had the cardinal done that you should self: never will I ac the Cardinal of tell him he was giving you poison? You Pavia for my judge. When they are rid have no right to insult a cardinal and of me, I hear he is to be my successor at the pope's legate on his first communiCanterbury.'
cation with you. Were he to send your Becket, however, was not the man to letter to Rome, you might be charged leave the field while life was in him. with contumacy. He tells you he is There was still hope, for war had broken come to close the dispute to the honor out at last, and Henry and Lewis were of God and the Church. What poison killing and burning in each other's terri- is there in this ? He is not to blame betories. If not the instigator, Becket was the occasion, and Lewis, for his own in
* Myths gathered about the state of these terests, would still be forced to stand by garments. One day, we are told, he was him. He was intensely superstitious. dining with the Queen of France. She obHis cause, he was convinced, was God's served that his sleeves were fastened unusual cause. Hitherto God had allowed him ly tightly at the wrist, and that something
moved inside them. He tried to evade her to fail on account of his own deficiencies, curiosity, for the moving things were mag; and the deficiencies required to be gots. But she pressed her questions till amended. Like certain persons who cut he was obliged to loosen the strings. Pearls themselves with knives and lancets, he of choicest size and color rolled upon the
table. The queen wished to keep one, but it
could not be. The pearls were restored to * The Pope to Henry, December 20, 1166. the sleeve, and became maggots as before. + Becket's Letters, Giles, vol. ii. p. 60. Materials, vol. ii. p. 296.
cause he cautions you not to provoke The last charge the archbishop sharpthe king further. Your best friends ly denied, and Lewis afterwards acquithave often given you the same advice.' ted him also. For the rest he said that
With great difficulty Becket was the king had begun by attacking the brought to consent to see the cardinals. Church. He was willing to consent to They came to him at Sens, but stayed any reasonable terms of arrangement, for a short time only, and went on to the with security for God's honor, proper reking in Normandy. The archbishop spect for himself, and the restoration of gathered no comfort from his speech his estates. They asked if he would rewith them. He took to his bell and cognise the Constitutions; he said that candles again, and cursed the Bishop of no such engagement had been required London. He still intended to curse the of his predecessors, and ought not to be king and declare an interdict. He wrote required of him. The book of abomito a friend, Cardinal Hyacinth, at Rome, nations,' as he called the Constitutions, to say that he would never submit to the was produced and read, and he chalarbitration of the cardinal legates, and lenged the cardinals to affirm that Chrisbidding him urge the pope to confirm tian men should obey such laws. the sentences which he was about to pro- Henry was prepared to accept the nounce.* He implored the pope him- smallest concession ; nothing need be self to recall the cardinals and unsheath sạid about the Constitutions if Becket the sword of Peter. To his entire con- would go back to Canterbury, resume fusion, he learned that the king held a his duties, and give a general promise to letter from the pope declaring that his be quiet. The archbishop answered that curses would be so much wasted breath. there was a proverb in England that The pope tried to soothe him. Soft silence gave consent. The question had words cost Alexander nothing, and, been raised, and could not now be passed while protecting Henry from spiritual over. The cardinals asked if he would thunders, he assured the archbishop him- accept their judgment on the whole self that his power should not be taken cause. He said that he would go into from him. Nor, indeed, had the vio- court before them or any one whom the lence of Becket's agitation any real occa- pope might appoint, as soon as his propsion. Alexander wished to frighten him erty was restored to him. In his present into submission, but had no intention of poverty he could not encounter the excompromising himself by an authoritative pense of a lawsuit. decision. Many months passed away, Curious satire on Becket's whole conand Becket still refused to plead before tention, none the less so that he was the cardinals. At length they let out himself unconscious of the absurdity! that their powers extended no further He withdrew from the conference, believthan advice, and Becket, thus satisfied, ing that he had gained a victory, and he consented to an official conference. The again began to meditate drawing his meeting was held near Gisors, on the spiritual sword. Messengers on all sides frontiers of France and Normandy, on again flew off to Rome, from the king the 18th of November, 1167. The arch- and English bishops, from the cardinals, bishop came attended by his exiled Eng- from Becket himself. The king and lish friends. With the cardinals were a bishops placed themselves under the large body of Norman bishops and ab- pope's protection should the archbishop bots. The cardinals, earnest for peace if begin his curses. The Constitutions they could bring their refractory patient were once more placed at the pope's disto consent to it, laid before him the gen- cretion to modify at his pleasure. The eral unfitness of the quarrel. They ac- cardinals wrote charging Becket with becused him of ingratitude, of want of loy- ing the sole cause of the continuance of alty to his sovereign, and, among other the quarrel, and in spite of his denials things, of having instigated the war.t persisting in accusing him of having
caused the war. Becket prayed again
for the cardinals' recall, and for the * Giles, vol. ii. p. 86. + Imponens ei inter cætera quod excita- pope's sanction of more vigorous action. verat guerram regis Francorum.'- Materials, He had not yet done'with the cardiyol. i. p. 66.
nals; they knew him, and they knew his restless humor. Pending fresh resolu- dent, but with amused contempt of the tions from Rome, they suspended him, chameleonlike Alexander, advised Henry, and left him incapable either of excom- through the Bishop of Poitiers, to treat municating or exercising any other func- with the archbishop immediately, nec tion of spiritual authority whatsoever. mediante Romano episcopo, nec rege FranOnce more he was plunged into despair. ciæ nec operå cardinalium, without help
Through those legates he cried in his either of pope, of French king or cardianguish to the pope : 'We are made a nals. Since Becket could not be frightderision to those about us. My lord, ened, Alexander was perhaps trying what have pity on me. You are my refuge. could be done with Henry; but he was I can scarcely breathe for anguish. My eager as any one for an end of some kind harp is turned to mourning, and my joy to a business which was now adding disto sadness. The last error is worse than grace and scandal to its other mischiefs. the first.'
Peace was arranged at last between Lewis The pope seemed deaf to his lamenta. and Henry. The English king gave up tions. The suspension was not removed. a point for which he had long contendPlans were formed for his translation ed, and consented to do homage for from Canterbury to some other prefer- Normandy and Anjou. The day after ment. He said he would rather be killed. Epiphany, January 7, 1169, the two The pope wrote so graciously to Henry princes met at Montmirail, between that the king said he for the first time Chartres and Le Mans, attended by their felt that he was sovereign in his own peers and prelates. realm. John of Salisbury's mournful con- In the general pacification the central viction was that the game was at last disturber was, if possible, to be included. played out. We know those Romans,' The pope had sent commissioners, as we he sighed; 'qui munere potentior est
, should call them-Simon, prior of Montpotentior est jure. The antipope could dieu, Engelbert, prior of Val St. Pierre, not have done more for the king than and Bernard de Corilo-to advise and, they have done. It will be written in if possible, guide Becket into wiser the annals of the Holy See that the her- courses. The political ceremonies were ald of truth, the champion of liberty, the accomplished, Lewis and Henry were preacher of the law of the Lord, has reconciled amidst general satisfaction been deprived and treated as a criminal and enthusiasm. Becket was then introat the threats of an English prince.' duced, led in by the Archbishop of Sens,
It is hard to say what influence again the son of the aged Theobald, Count of turned the scale. Perhaps Alexander Blois. Henry and he had not met since was encouraged by the failures of Bar- the Northampton council. He threw barossa in Italy. Perhaps Henry had himself in apparent humility at the king's been too triumphant, and had irritated feet. 'My lord,' he said, 'I ask you to the pope and cardinals by producing forgive me. I place myself in God's their letters, and speaking too frankly of hands and in yours.' At a preliminary the influences by which the holy men meeting the pope's envoys and the had been bound to his side. * In accept- French clergy had urged him to submit ing Henry's money they had not bar- without conditions. He had insisted on gained for exposure. They were his usual reservation, but they had obashamed and sore, and Becket grew jected to saving clauses. He seemed again into favor. The pope at the end now inclined really to yield, so Herbert of 1168 gave him back his powers, per- de Bosham says, and Herbert whispered mitting him to excommunicate even to him to stand firm. Henry himself unless he repented before My lord king,' said Henry, after the ensuing Easter. The legates were Becket had made his general submission, recalled as Becket desired. Cardinal and you my lords and prelates, what I Otho recommended the king to make require of the archbishop is no more than his peace on the best terms which he that he will observe the laws which have could get. John of Salisbury, less confi- been observed by his predecessors. I
ask him now to give me that promise.' John of Salisbury, Letters, vol. ii. p. 144, Becket no longer answered with a resered. Giles.
vation of his order : he changed the
phrase. He promised obedience, saving ble as stone. Lewis, after a brief coldthe honor of God.
ness, took him back into favor. His “You wish,' replied Henry, powerfully power of cursing had been restored, to disappointed and displeased, to be king him. The doubt was only whether the
my place. This man,' he continued, pope had recalled the safeguards which turning to Lewis, ' deserted his Church he had given to the king. The pope's of his own will, and he tells you and all agents, on the failure of the conference, men that his cause is the cause of the gave Henry a second letter, in which AlChurch. He has governed his Church exander told him that, unless peace was with as much freedom as those who have made, he could not restrain the archbishgone before him, but now he stands on op longer. Again representatives of the God's honor to oppose me wherever he various parties hurried off to Rome, Beckpleases, as if I cared for God's honor et insisting that if the pope would only less than he. I make this proposal. be firm the king would yield, Henry emMany kings have ruled in England be- barrassing the pope more completely fore me, some less, some greater than I than threats of schism could have done am; many holy men have been Arch- by placing the Constitutions unreservedbishops of Canterbury before him. Let ly in his hands, and binding himself to him behave to me as the most sainted of adopt any change which the pope might his predecessors behaved to the least suggest. Becket, feverish and impatient, worthy of mine, and I am content.' would not wait for the pope's decision,
The king's demand seemed just and and preferred to force his hand by acmoderate to all present. The archbishop tion. He summoned the Bishops of hesitated. Lewis asked him if he as London and Salisbury to appear before pired to be greater than acknowledged him. They appealed to Rome, but their saints. His predecessors, he said, had appeal was disregarded. Appeals, as extirpated some abuses, but not all. Becket characteristically said, were pot There was work which remained to be allowed in order to shield the guilty, but done. He was stopped by a general to protect the innocent. On Palm Sunoutcry that the king had yielded enough; day, at Clairvaux, he took once more to the saving clause must be dropped. At his bell and candles. He excommunionce, at the tone of command, Becket's cated the two bishops and every one who spirit rose. Priests and bishops, he an- had been concerned with his propertyswered defiantly, were not to submit to the Earl of Norfolk, Sir Ranulf de Broc, men of this world save with reservations: whom he peculiarly hated, Robert de he for one would not do it.
Broc, and various other (persons. The The meeting broke up in confusion. A chief justice he threatened. The king French noble said that the archbishop he still left unmentioned, for fear of prowas abusing their hospitality, and did voking the pope too far. not deserve any longer protection. Hen Harassed on both sides, knowing perry mounted his horse and rode sadly fectly well on which side good sense and away. The pope's agents followed him, justice lay, yet not daring to declare wringing their hands and begging for Becket wrong, and accept what, after ali some slight additional concession. The that had passed, would be construed into king told them that they must address a defeat of the Church, the unfortunate themselves to the archbishop. Let the Alexander drifted on as he best could, archbishop bind himself to obey the writing letters in one sense one day, and laws. If the laws were amiss, they should contradicting them the next. On the be modified by the pope's wishes. In no surface he seemed hopelessly false. The country in the world, he said, had the falsehood was no more than weakness, a clergy so much liberty as in England, specious anxiety to please the king withand in no country were there greater vil- out offending the archbishop, and trustlains among them. For the sake of ing to time and weariness to bring about peace he did not insist on terms precise- an end. There is no occasion to follow ly defined. The archbishop was required the details of his duplicities. Two leg. to do nothing beyond what had been ates were again sent-not cardinals this done by Anslem.
time, but ecclesiastical lawyers, Gratian Becket, however, was again immova- and Vivian-bound by oath this time to
cause no scandal by accepting bribes. tian had returned to Rome. Vivian was As usual, the choice was impartial; Gra- present, and pressed Lewis to bring the tian was for Becket, Vivian for the king. archbishop to reason. Lewis really exSo long as his excommunications were erted himself, and not entirely unsuccessallowed to stand, Becket cared little who fully. Henry was 'even more moderate might come. He added the chief justice than before. The Constitutions, by the to the list of the accursed, as he had confession of Becket's biographer, H threatened to do. He wrote to the Bish- bert, who was with him on the spot, were op of Ostia that the king's disposition practically abandoned. Henry's only could only be amended by punishment. condition was that the archbishop should The serpent head of the finiquity must not usurp the functions of the civil pownow be bruised, and he bade the bishop er; he, on his part, undertaking not to impress the necessity of it upon the pope. strain the prerogative. Becket dropped Gratian (was taken into Becket's confi- his saving clause, and consented to make dence. Vivian he treated coldly and the promise required of him, if the king contemptuously. According to Herbert would restore his estates, and give him and Becket's friends, Gratian reported compensation for the arrear rents, which that the king was shifty and false, and he estimated at 20,000l. Lewis said that that his object was to betray the Church money ought not to be an obstacle to and the archbishop. Henry himself de- peace. It was unworthy of the archclared that he assented to all that they bishop to raise so poor a difficulty. But proposed to him, and Diceto says that here, too, Henry gave way. An imparthe legates were on the point of giving tial estimate should be made, and Becket judgment in Henry's favor when the was to be repaid. Archbishop of Sens interposed and for- But now, no more than before, had bade them. In the confusion of state- the archbishop any real intention of subment the actions of either party alone mitting. His only fear was of offending can be usefully attended to, and behind Lewis. The Archbishop of Sens had the acts of all, or at least of the pope, gone to Rome to persuade the pope to there was the usual ambiguity. Alexan- give him legatine powers over Henry's der threatened the king. He again em- French dominions. The censures of the powered Becket to use whatever power Church might be resisted in England. he possessed to bring him to submission, If Normandy, Anjou, and Aquitaine and he promised to confirm his sentences. were laid under interdict; these two spirAs certainly he had secret conferences itual conspirators had concluded that the at Rome with Henry's envoys, and prom- king would be forced to surrender. ised, on the other hand, that the arch- Becket was daily expecting a favorable bishop should not be allowed to hurt answer, and meanwhile was protracting him. Becket, furious and uncontrolla- the time. He demanded guarantees. ble, called the Bishop of London a par- He did not suspect the king, he said, but ricide, an infidel, a Goliath, a son of he suspected his courtiers. John of SalBelial; he charged the Bishop of Here- isbury had cautioned him, and the pope ford to see that the sentence against Fol. had cautioned him, against so indecent iot and his brother of Salisbury should a requisition. Lewis said it was unreabe observed in England. Henry, on the sonable. Becket said then that he must other hand, assured Foliot of protection, have the kiss of peace as a sign that the and sent him to Rome with letters from king was really reconciled to him. He himself to pursue his appeal and receive probably knew that the kiss would and absolution from the pope himself. The must be withheld from him until he had Count of Flanders interposed, the Count given proofs that he meant in earnest to of Mayence interposed, but without carry out his engagements. The king effect. At length on the 18th of Novem- said coldly that he did not mean, and ber, the anniversary of the conference had never meant, to injure the Church. with the cardinals at Gisors, Henry and He was willing to leave the whole quesLewis met again at Montmartre outside tion between himself and the archbishop Paris, Becket and his friends being in at- either to the peers and prelates of France tendance in an adjoining chapel. Gra- or to the French universities. More he