Friday, February 11, 2011

Church of England

On February 11, 1531, Henry VIII of England became supreme head of the Church of England.   This institution was important to Edward Waverley's pro-Hanoverian family as shown in Walter Scott's "Waverley".  From the chapter titled The Adieus of Waverley:

'...My dear Edward, it is God's will, and also the will of your father, whom, under God, it is your duty to obey, that you should leave us to take up the profession of arms, in which so many of your ancestors have been distinguished. I have made such arrangements as will enable you to take the field as their descendant, and as the probable heir of the house of Waverley; and, sir, in the field of battle you will remember what name you bear. And, Edward, my dear boy, remember also that you are the last of that race, and the only hope of its revival depends upon you; therefore, as far as duty and honour will permit, avoid danger--I mean unnecessary danger--and keep no company with rakes, gamblers, and Whigs, of whom, it is to be feared, there are but too many in the service into which you are going. Your colonel, as I am informed, is an excellent man--for a Presbyterian; but you will remember your duty to God, the Church of England, and the--' (this breach ought to have been supplied, according to the rubric, with the word KING; but as, unfortunately, that word conveyed a double and embarrassing sense, one meaning de facto and the other de jure, the knight filled up the blank otherwise)--'the Church of England, and all constituted authorities.' Then, not trusting himself with any further oratory, he carried his nephew to his stables to see the horses destined for his campaign. Two were black (the regimental colour), superb chargers both; the other three were stout active hacks, designed for the road, or for his domestics, of whom two were to attend him from the Hall; an additional groom, if necessary, might be picked up in Scotland...'

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