Page:Dictionary of National Biography volume 36.djvu/384

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Mary Stuart
Mary Stuart
378


that she desired their ruin. But apparently ' she felt that it could not be avoided, and, while possibly she aimed to bind Huntly to her by ties of self-interest, she was no doubt well aware that the result of the expedition would favourably impress both the protestants and Elizabeth. If the whole business was odious to her, she managed admirably to mask her feelings. 'In all these garboils,' wrote Randolph, 'I never saw her merrier.' Her only regret was that 'she was not a man, to know what life it was to lie all night in the fields, or to walk on the causeway with a jack and knapschulle, a Glasgow buckler, and a broadsword' (ib. 1562, entry 648).

The news of the Huntly expedition increased Elizabeth's cordiality. In a letter of special kindliness she excused to Mary her procedure in France on the ground 'that we must guard our own homes when those of our neighbours are on fire' (Froude, cab. edit. vi. 612). Mary's pleasure at the receipt of the letter is recorded by Randolph. Sue 'trusted next year to travel as far south as she had done north' (2 Nov., Cal State Papers, For. Ser. 1502, entry 967). But almost immediately her hopes were again rudely shaken. The rumour reached her that when Elizabeth in October was at the point of death : only a single voice had been raised in her favour as Elizabeth's successor (Randolph, 18 Nov., Keith, ii. 177). She therefore now resolved to have done with uncertainties. The war between England and France, which might involve thelossof her dowry, was made the excuse for claiming a more secure interest in the succession than that guaranteed merely by Elizabeth's love (Maitland, 14 Nov., ib. p. 184). She gave Elizabeth to understand that she preferred her friendship even to that of the Guises (Randolph, 3 Dec. Illustrations of the Reign of Mary, p. 109); but finally, in February, she despatched Maitland to state her claims in the face of the English parliament, and if they were not admitted, to solemnly protest that she would seek the remedies provided for those ' who are enormously and excessively hurt' (Labanoff, i. 161-9; Keith, ii. 188-92).

Shortly after Maitland's departure the execution on 21 Feb. 15(52-3 of the poet Chastelard for concealing himself in Mary's bedroom gave rise to various rumours. The statements of Knox (ii. 367-9) and of Randolph (15 Feb., Cal. State Papers, For. Ser. 1563, entry 313) merely repeat current gossip, but Mary seems to have manifested imprudent partiality for Chastelard's society. Maitland took upon him to affirm that Chastelard had been employed by the Huguenots to compromise Mary's honour (De Quadra, 2S March, Cal State Papers, Span. Ser. 1558-67, p. 314), and Madame de Guise informed the Venetian ambassador that Chastelard had made a confession to that effect (1 May, Venetian State Papers, 1558-80, entry 324; cf. Trulet, v. 2; and Kervin de Lettenhove, Relations Politiques, iii. 308).

Up to this time the question of Mary's marriage had remained in abeyance. Several suitors, including Arran and Eric IV of Sweden, had been rejected, and Mary seemed content to await events. In the negotiations with Elizabeth the question had been ignored, probably because all parties felt that it was crucial. To Mary, who had set her heart on marrying Philip II's son, Don Carlos, it was the key of the position, her recognition as heir-presumptive being a mere aid to a grand scheme of sovereignty, embracing Scotland, Spain, and England. Elizabeth's chief concern was lest her own sovereignty should be endangered by Mary's marriage or the acknowledgment of her title. The Scots had no interest in the protection of Elizabeth's sovereignty ; their chief aim was to obtain such an alliance as would make Mary's title to the succession secure, for, as Maitland stated to De Quadra, to be nominated successor ' would be of no use unless she had the power to enforce her title' (Froude, vii. 50-51 ; Cal. State Papers, Spanish Ser. 1558-67, p. 308). It was the insecurity of the succession, especially as made manifest at the time of Elizabeth's illness, that, with other reasons, reconciled Maitland, and probably Moray, to the marriage with Don Carlos. While in London, Maitland in March 1563 secretly entered into negotiations for this purpose with De Quadra (cf. ib. pp. 305-16 ; Froude, vii. 50-5; Gachard, Philippe II et Don Carlos, 2nd edit. pp. 160-2, 180-92; Philippson, Histoire de Marie Stuart, vol. ii. chaps, iii. and iv. of bk. ii.)

Mary's negotiations with Elizabeth and her dubious policy in Scotland had rendered the catholic authorities uneasy, but she now addressed a letter to the Cardinal of Lorraine, expressing her determination to reestablish the old faith at the peril of her life (30 Jan. 1562-3, Labanoff, 1. 175-6), and another to the pope in similar terms (31 Jan. ib. p. 177), and by letters patent secretly appointed the cardinal to represent her at the council of Trent (18 March, ib. pj>. 179-80). It thus happened that while Maitland was assuring Mary, on the word of De Quadra, that Philip was ' not a sworn soldato del papa,' but a ' wise, politic prince,' who governed (as Mary was expected to do) the divers nations under his rule ' according to their own humour' (Addit. MS. 32091,