John Donne and the Ancient Catholic Nobility

By Dennis Flynn | Go to book overview

9
HEYWOOD IN EXILE AGAIN

JASPER HEYWOOD WAS disappointed and perhaps stunned by the refusal of his superiors to permit his return to England. William Allen, writing to Claudio Aquaviva about Heywood's appeal of this decision, remarked with some asperity that Heywood "has made it his convenience" to await the General's decision at Reims. Robert Persons also wrote at length to Aquaviva about Heywood and the future of the mission. The General was in agreement that "they who handle those matters should all have the same sentiments and views, and with consentient minds advance by the same paths." Siding with Allen and Persons, Aquaviva recalled Heywood to Rome early in April. 1 By this time, however, his stubborn presence having become unwelcome, Heywood had already left Reims. Retiring to Paris, he visited an old friend from his days at Dillingen, the English Jesuit Thomas Darbyshire, with whom he could more congenially recover from the shock of returning to exile.

Never again would Heywood play a role with the Jesuits in England, but he found it difficult to withdraw immediately from affairs of the mission, troubling himself along with Darbyshire to advise one of Allen's seminary priests about a consignment of books, probably some pamphlets by Persons being smuggled into England. 2 In light of Heywood's behavior whenever conflict arose with superiors, it is probable that he did not intend to accept assignment elsewhere readily. He may again have considered appealing directly to the Pope, but such a tactic was prevented by the death of Gregory XIII in mid-April. In any case, before setting out for Rome, Heywood had to take care of various affairs connected with England, including the question of his nephew's future.

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