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

JOHN  EVELYN

present with the King save this Doctor and one more, as
I am assured. It was a mark of the extraordinary dex-
terity, resolution, and presence of mind in the Doctor, to
let him bleed in the very paroxysm, without staying the
coming of other physicians, which regularly should have
been done, and for want of which he must have a regular
pardon, as they tell me. This rescued his Majesty for the
instant, but it was only a short reprieve. He still com-
plained, and was relapsing, often fainting, with sometimes
epileptic symptoms, till Wednesday, for which he was
cupped, let bleed in both jugulars, and both vomit and
purges, which so relieved him, that on Thursday hopes of
recovery were signified in the public «Gazette,» but that
day about noon, the physicians thought him feverish.
This they seemed glad of, as being more easily allayed
and methodically dealt with than his former fits; so as they
prescribed the famous Jesuit's powder; but it made him
worse, and some very able doctors who were present did
not think it a fever, but the effect of his frequent bleed-
ing and other sharp operations used by them about his
head, so that probably the powder might stop the circula-
tion, and renew his former fits, which now made him very
weak. Thus he passed Thursday night with great diffi-
culty, when complaining of a pain in his side, they drew
twelve ounces more of blood from him; this was by six in
the morning on Friday, and it gave him relief, but it did
not continue, for being now in much pain, and struggling
for breath, he lay dozing, and, after some conflicts, the
physicians despairing of him, he gave up the ghost at half
an hour after eleven in the morning, being the sixth of
February, 1685, in the 36th year of his reign, and 54th of
his age.

Prayers were solemnly made in all the churches, espe-
cially in both the Court Chapels, where the chaplains
relieved one another every half quarter of an hour from
the time he began to be in danger till he expired, ac-
cording to the form prescribed in the Church offices.
Those who assisted his Majesty's devotions were, the
Archbishop of Canterbury, the Bishops of London, Dur-
ham, and Ely, but more especially Dr. Ken, the Bishop
of Bath and Wells.* It is said they exceedingly urged

*The account given of this by Charles's brother and successor, is,
that when the King's life was wholly despaired of, and it was time and Apotheosis or receptione he showed me the woa-