Expectation that Henry would return to the Roman Communion -- Henry persists in carrying out the Reformation -- The Crown and the clergy -- Meeting of a new Parliament -- Fresh repudiation of the Pope's authority -- Complications of the succession -- Attitude of the Princess Mary -- Her reluctant submission -- The King empowered to name his successor by will -- Indication of his policy -- The Pilgrimage of Grace -- Cost of the Reformation -- The martyrs, Catholic and Protestant.
WHETHER Henry, on the exposure of the character of the woman for whom, in the world's union, he had quarrelled with Rome and broken the union of Christendom, would now reverse his course and return to the communion of the Apostolic See, was the question on which all minds were exercising themselves. The Pope and the European Powers were confident, believing the reports which had reached them of the discontent in England. Cranmer feared it, as he almost confessed in the letter which he wrote to the King when he first heard of the arrest of Anne. She had been conspicuously Lutheran; her family and her party were Lutheran, and the disgrace might naturally extend to the cause which they represented. The King was to show that he had not, as he said himself, "proceeded on such light grounds." The divorce had been the spark which kindled the mine; but the explosive force was in the temper of the English nation. The English nation was weary of a tribunal which sold its decrees for money, or allowed itself to be used