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woman. But there was a time when she was unknown to you, for whom you lamented then not. She is now no more yours nor of your acquaintance, but immortal, and not needing or knowing your love or sorrow. Therefore you shall but grieve for that which now is as then it was, when not yours; only bettered by the difference in this, that she hath passed the wearisome journey of this dark world, and hath possession of her inheritance.

I believe that sorrows are dangerous companions, converting bad into evil and evil into worse, and do no other service than multiply harms. They are the treasures of weak hearts and of the foolish. The mind that entertainet them is as the earth and dust, whereon sorrows and adversities of the world do-as the beasts of the field-tread, trample, and defile. The mind of man is that part of God which is in us, which by how much it is subject to passion, by so much it is farther from Him that gave it us.

Sorrows draw not the dead to life, but the living to death. And if I were myself to advise myself in the like, I would never forget my patience till I saw all and the worst of evils, and so grieve for all at once, lest lamenting for some one, another might not remain in the power of destiny of greater discomfort.--Yours ever beyond the power of words to utter,

«W. RALEGH.” Ralegh seems to have continued his efforts to bring about peaceful intercourse between Essex

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1596]

SIR ROBERT CECIL. and Cecil. Essex had been much disgusted by discovering on his return from Cadiz that in his absence Cecil had been made Secretary. This advancement of Cecil shows how Elizabeth's head was stronger than her heart. She knew that it would be thoroughly displeasing to the favourite whom she fondly loved; but she knew also that Cecil would prove a useful servant, and in this she was not disappointed. Sir Robert Cecil was not a great man; but he was wise and cautious. He had been educated as a statesman, and, as a natural consequence, lacked originality. Diligent and conscientious, he had not a spark of genius, and could not appreciate it in others. He seems to have wished to serve his Queen and country honestly, whilst keeping his eye on his own advantage. He was a stumbling-block in the way of Essex, as his father had been in the way of Leicester. He had no real sympathy with Ralegh, and could not enter into his views; but as long as it served his purpose, he kept on friendly terms with him. He was too prudent ever to show hostility to any man, and too courteous ever to treat anyone with insolence, and so, without any conscious hypocrisy, he may have seemed to Ralegh and his wife a truer friend than he afterwards proved to be.

Cecil warmly followed his father in his desire for peace, and his appointment as Secretary had greatly increased the strength of the peace party. In his opposition to the peace party Essex seems for a time to have forgotten other animosities, and to have made no objections to Ralegh's return to favour at Court. In a letter to Sir Robert Sidney, then governor of Flushing, written by a certain Rowland Whyte, who kept Sidney supplied with news from London, dated April 9th, 1597, we read : "Sir W. Ralegh is daily in Court, and a hope is that he shall be admitted to the execution of his office as Captain of the Guard before his going to sea. His friends, you know, are of the greatest authority and power here, and Essex gives it no opposition, his mind being full, and only carried away with the business he hath in his head of conquering and overcoming the enemy.” Another letter of White's, written June 21st, says: “Yesterday my Lord of Essex rode to Chatham. In his absence Sir Walter Ralegh was brought to the Queen by Cecil, who used him very graciously, and gave him full authority to execute his place as Captain of the Guard, which immediately he undertook, and swore many men into the places void. In the evening he rode abroad with the Queen, and had private conference with her; and now he comes boldly to the Privy Chamber as he was wont. Though this was done in the absence of the Earl, yet is it known that it was done with his liking and furtherance."

So, after five years of disgrace, Ralegh was once more favoured with the royal smile; and at this time his power and importance at Court seem to have been great. In 1597 Elizabeth yielded to

1597]

NEW ATTACK ON SPAIN.

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the entreaties of Essex, and gave permission for another attack upon Spain. It was said that Philip was fitting out a new Armada wherewith to invade England. Ralegh wrote a paper on these reports, called Opinion on the Spanish Alarum, in which he discussed the best means for defending the coast, but expressed his doubts as to the possibility of the King of Spain being in readiness for so great an undertaking. He was as eager as anyone for an attack upon Spain. A fleet was fitted out, of which Essex was appointed admiral and general-in-chief, whilst Lord Thomas Howard commanded one squadron, and Ralegh another. A Dutch squadron also joined the fleet.

A Spanish fleet was supposed to be preparing in Ferrol, a port on the north coast of Spain, for a descent upon Ireland, where the Spaniards hoped to find plenty of support from the disaffected Irish. The object of Essex and Ralegh was to attack Ferrol, to destroy the ships there, and also to intercept a rich fleet of Indiamen on its way to Spain. The departure of the English fleet was delayed for a long while by contrary winds. They set sail on the 10th of July, 1597, and fell in with a tremendous storm, which lasted five days. “The storm so increased," writes Ralegh, “and the billows so raised and enraged as we could carry no sail. ... On Saturday night we made accompt to have yielded ourselves up to God.” The fleet had to put back to Plymouth much

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disabled. One by one the ships came in, each in a more miserable condition than the last. Essex would not return till he was in imminent peril of sinking in the sea. Ralegh, on reaching Plymouth, wrote to Cecil his fears “that my Lord General himself will wrestle with the seas to his peril, or (constrained to come back) be found utterly heart-broken.” Essex' was in truth much cast down by these reverses. But the ships were repaired, though they had been so severely damaged that Ralegh wrote of them: “We shall not be in any great courage for winter weather and long nights in these ships.”

Contrary winds prevailed for some time; but, on the 18th August, at last a fresh start was made. A few days after starting, the fleet was again scattered by another storm. Ralegh and his squadron were missing, and the wind blew straight out of Ferrol, which made any further undertaking against that place hopeless. The next thing to be done was to attempt the capture of the fleet of Indiamen, and for this purpose Essex sailed to the Azores, hoping to meet Ralegh there.

Ralegh meanwhile had been spending an anxious time; for his ship had been damaged in the storm. He wrote to Cecil: “I have never dared to rest since my wrecks, and, God doth judge, I never for these ten days came so much as into bed or cabin.” Essex contrived to send to Ralegh by a pinnace a message to follow him to the islands, and there at last they met again off the Island of

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