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Full text of "The Diary Of John Evelyn Vol-2"

i6So                             JOHN EVELYN                               H9

not perused before. They consisted chiefly of such hooks
as had from time to time heen dedicated, or presented to
him; a few histories, some Travels and French books,
abundance of maps and sea charts, entertainments and
pomps, buildings and pieces relating: to the navy, some
mathematical instruments; but what was most rare, were
three or four Romish breviaries, with a great deal of
miniature and monkish painting and gilding, one of which
is most exquisitely done, both as to the figures, gro-
tesques, and compartments, to the utmost of that curious
art. Tliere is another in which I find written by the
hand of King Henry VII., his giving it to his 'dear
daughter, Margaret, afterward Queen of Scots, in which
he desires her to pray for his soul, subscribing his name
at length. There is also the process of the philosophers*
great elixir, represented in divers pieces of excellent
miniature, but the discourse is in high Dutch, a MS.
There is another MS. in quarto, of above 300 years old,
in French, being an institution of physic, and in the
botanical part the plants are curiously painted in minia-
ture; also a folio MS. of good thickness, being the sev-
eral exercises, as Themes, Orations, Translations, etc., of
King Edward VI., all written and subscribed by his own
hand, and with his name very legible, and divers of the
Greek interleaved and corrected after the manner of
schoolboys' exercises, and that exceedingly well and
proper; with some epistles to his preceptor, which show
that young" prince to have been extraordinarily advanced
in learning, and as Cardan, who had been in England
affirmed, stupendously knowing for his age. There is
likewise his journal, no less testifying his early ripeness
and care about the affairs of state.

There are besides many pompous volumes, some em-
bossed with gold, and intaglios on agates, medals, etc. I
spent three or four entire days, locked up, and alone,
among these books and curiosities. In the rest of the
private lodgings contiguous to this, are divers of the
best pictures of the great masters, Raphael, Titian, etc.,
and in my esteem, above all, the ^Noli me tangere* of
our blessed Savior to Mary Magdalen after his Resurrec-
tion, of Hans Holbein; than which I never saw so much
reverence and kind of heavenly astonishment expressed
in, a picture. Whitehall, at my full ease. I went with expectation