By Elizabeth Clarke (auth.)

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Like Downame, he takes the opportunity to denounce Separatists, and Familists, as well as Roman Catholics, as a threat to the Church of England: the true Protestant, who is also the Bride of Christ, is as royal as Elizabeth is on her wedding day (p. 60, pp. 16–17). Andrew Willet, one of Prince Henry’s chaplains, preached a celebration of Elizabeth and Frederick’s marriage on 14 February 1613, which took the marriage of Solomon as its subject. 31 Unlike Beza, however, for whom the mystical marriage was the only possible interpretation of these texts, Willett treated the Psalm as an expression of Solomon’s own marriage.

Merlin’s final prophecy over the other Stuart prince and princess is similarly warlike: Henry and Charles shall fight ‘the foes of God’. The beauty of Elizabeth Stuart might ‘call the world to warre’ in a chivalric contest over her person that added a militaristic element to any consideration of her marriage (p. 974). Henry, however, seems to have been already enlisted in the roll of honour directly after Elizabeth I, in a specifically military international context. 24 26 Politics, Religion and the Song of Songs in Seventeenth-Century England Fulke Greville’s work, adulatory of Leicester, Essex and above all, Sir Philip Sidney, was designed to reveal James I’s lack of interest in becoming an international Protestant champion, and it is likely that it was intended for Prince Henry: the work was abandoned after that fateful year of 1612.

77 Robert Aylett ostentatiously started his Thrifts equipage (1622) with a disavowal of his interest in State affairs: I Meddle not with newes of Parlament, Court-Fauourites, or Kingdomes gouernement; On Kings secrets, and affaires of State, Nor know, nor need, nor care to meditate (sig. A1v). 78 Peter McCullough believes that most of Charles’ chaplains, who had been recruited to the Prince of Wales’ court in the days of Henry, were opposed to the match. 80 Hall’s Contemplations Upon the Holy Story, meditations on the Bible which had been issued in instalments since 1612, dealt in 1622 with Solomon’s marriages in a manner which could only be seen as relevant to the proposed Spanish and Castholic royal match.

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