Coronation Anecdotes
by Giles Gossip
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[Footnote *: MS. Claude, A. 3. Cotton Library.]

The prayers that follow, the bishops shall separately repeat. "We invoke thee, O Lord, Holy Father Almighty and Eternal God, that this thy servant, whom by the wisdom of thy divine dispensations from the beginning of his existence to this day, thou hast permitted to increase, rejoicing in the flower of youth, enriched with the gift of thy piety, and full of the grace of thy truth, thou mayest cause to be always advancing, day by day, to better things before God and men;—that rejoicing in the bounty of supernal grace, he may receive the throne of supreme power; and, defended on all sides from his enemies by the wall of thy mercy, he may deserve to govern happily the people committed to him, with the peace of propitiation and the strength of victory."

The following combination of admirable Scripture allusions is extracted from the third prayer, or that offered by the bishop after the consecration, "holding the crown over the king."

"Almighty Creator, everlasting Lord, Governor of heaven and earth, the Maker and Disposer of angels and men, King of kings and Lord of lords! who made thy faithful servant Abraham to triumph over his enemies, and gavest manifold victories to Moses and Joshua, the prelates of thy people; and didst raise David, thy lowly child, to the summit of the kingdom, and didst free him from the mouth of the lion and the paws of the bear, and from Goliath, and from the malignant sword of Saul; who didst endow Solomon with the ineffable gift of wisdom and peace;—look down propitiously on our humble prayers, and multiply the gifts of thy blessing on this thy servant, whom with humble devotion we have chosen to be king of the Angles and Saxons. Surround him everywhere with the right hand of thy power, that, strengthened with the faith of Abraham, the meekness of Moses, the courage of Joshua, the humility of David, and the wisdom of Solomon, he may be well pleasing to thee in all things, and may always advance in the way of justice with inoffensive progress."

When crowned, the invocation is, "May God crown thee with the honour of justice, and the labour of fortitude; that by the virtue of our benediction, and by a right faith, and the various fruit of good works, thou mayest attain to the crown of the everlasting kingdom, through his bounty whose kingdom endureth for ever!"

We cannot omit the concluding benedictions, rich with Scripture phraseology as any church could make them.

"May the Almighty Lord give thee, from the dew of heaven, and the fatness of the earth, abundance of corn, wine, and oil! May the people serve thee, and the tribes adore thee! Be the lord of thy brothers, and let the sons of thy mother bow before thee! He who blesses thee shall be filled with blessings; for God will be thy helper. May the Almighty bless thee with the blessings of the heaven above, and in the mountains and the valleys; with the blessings of the deep below; with the blessings of the suckling and the womb; with the blessings of grapes and apples; and may the blessing of the ancient fathers, Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob, be heaped upon thee!—May the blessing of Him, who appeared in the bush, come upon his head, and may the full blessing of the Lord be upon his sons, and may he steep his feet in oil! With his horn, as the horn of the rhinoceros, may he push the nations to the extremities of the earth; and may He who has ascended the skies be his auxiliary for ever!"]

[Footnote 84: Chron. Sax. 257.]

[Footnote 85: Lingard, vol. i. 485.]

[Footnote 86: A tax of two shillings per hide on land, gathered annually.]

[Footnote 87: History of England, 8vo. edit. vol. i. p. 413.]

[Footnote 88: Holinshed.]

[Footnote 89: This is the common statement: Mr. Taylor (Glory of Regality, p. 249,) objects to this being considered as a second coronation, and thinks it only a renewal of the royal festivities at Easter, with unusual splendor. But he seems to overlook the formal resolve of the council at Nottingham, on the point.]

[Footnote 90: See the whole speech, in Matt. Paris.]

[Footnote 91: Leg. Sex. 154.]

[Footnote 92: Brompton, 1283, 4.]

[Footnote 93: See M. Paris, Rymer, &c.]

[Footnote 94: Holinshed.]

[Footnote 95: The queen is said to have sucked the poison out of a wound which her husband received in the Holy Land, from the poisoned dagger of the emir of Jaffa.—See Lingard, v. ii. p. 369.]

[Footnote 96: Johnes' Froissart, i. xxv.]

[Footnote 97: Rymer, vii.]

[Footnote 98: Rot. Parl. iii.]

[Footnote 99: See the curious original document in Hume.]

[Footnote 100: King Henry IV. p. ii.]

[Footnote 101: See a curious MS. account of this 'solempnyte' in the Cotton Library, as quoted by Mr. Taylor, Glory of Regality, p. 263.]

[Footnote 102: See the preceding Note.]

[Footnote 103: Grafton, vol i. p. 592.]

[Footnote 104: Historic Doubts, Lord Orford's Works, 5 vols. 4to. vol. ii. p. 146.]

[Footnote 105: Grafton, vol. ii. p. 156.]

[Footnote 106: Burnet on the Reformation, and Appendix.]

[Footnote 107: Walker's Circumstantial Account, 8vo. 1. p. 78.]

[Footnote 108: Taylor's Preface, p. x.]

[Footnote 109: Page 37.]

[Footnote 110: No. 335.—The Spectator's encomium on Booth is, however, sufficiently slight. The good bishop, it is evident, was better acquainted with the realities he was here describing than these theatrical types.]

[Footnote 111: Here the archbishop took the paten into his hands.]

[Footnote 112: And here broke the bread.]

[Footnote 113: Here the archbishop laid his hand upon all the bread.]

[Footnote 114: Here he took the cup into his hand.]

[Footnote 115: And here laid his hand upon every vessel (be it chalice or flagon) in which there was any wine to be consecrated.]



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