The Star-Chamber, Volume 2

W. Harrison Ainsworth
The Star-Chamber, Volume 2

Project Gutenberg's The Star-Chamber, Volume 2, by W. Harrison Ainsworth This eBook is for the use of anyone anywhere at no cost and with almost no restrictions whatsoever. You may copy it, give it away or re-use it under the terms of the Project Gutenberg License included with this eBook or online at
Title: The Star-Chamber, Volume 2 An Historical Romance
Author: W. Harrison Ainsworth
Release Date: May 20, 2004 [EBook #12397]
Language: English
Character set encoding: ISO-8859-1

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I. Poison II. Counter-Poison III. Showing that "our pleasant vices are made the whips to scourge us." IV. How the forged Confession was produced V. A visit to Sir Giles Mompesson's habitation near the fleet VI. Of the Wager between the Conde de Gondomar and the Marquis of Buckingham VII. A Cloud in the Horizon VIII. Whitehall IX. Prince Charles X. The old Palace-Yard of Westminster XI. The Tilt-Yard XII. The Tilting-Match XIII. The Felon Knight XIV. The private Cabinet of Sir Giles Mompesson XV. Clement Lanyere's Story XVI. Sir Jocelyn's rupture with de Gondomar XVII. Disgrace XVIII. How Sir Jocelyn's cause was espoused by the 'prentices XIX. A Noble Revenge XX. A Place of Refuge XXI. The Arrest XXII. The Old Fleet Prison XXIII. How Sir Jocelyn was brought to the Fleet XXIV. The Abduction XXV. The "Stone Coffin." XXVI. A Secret Friend XXVII. Showing how judgment was given by King James in the Star-Chamber in the great cause of the Countess of Exeter against Sir Thomas and Lady Lake XXVIII. The two warrants XXIX. The Silver Coffer XXX. How the Marriage was interrupted XXXI. Accusations XXXII. Judgment

The execution of Lady Lake's criminal and vindictive project would not have been long deferred, after the defeat she had sustained from Lord Roos, but for her husband's determined opposition. This may appear surprising in a man so completely under his wife's governance as was Sir Thomas; but the more he reflected upon the possible consequences of the scheme, the more averse to it he became; and finding all arguments unavailing to dissuade his lady from her purpose, he at last summoned up resolution enough positively to interdict it.
But the project was only deferred, and not abandoned. The forged confession was kept in readiness by Lady Lake for production on the first favourable opportunity.
Not less disinclined to the measure than her father was Lady Roos, though the contrary had been represented to Sir Thomas by his lady; but accustomed to yield blind obedience to her mother's wishes, she had been easily worked upon to acquiesce in the scheme, especially as the fabricated confession did not appear to hurt her husband, for whom (though she did not dare to exhibit it) she maintained a deep and unchanging affection. So utterly heart-broken was she by the prolonged and painful struggle she had undergone, that she was now almost indifferent to its issue.
For some time her health had given way under the severe shocks she had endured; but all at once more dangerous symptoms began to manifest themselves, and she became so greatly indisposed that she could not leave her room. Extremely distressing in its effects, the attack resembled fever. Inextinguishable thirst tormented her; burning pains; throbbing in the temples; and violent fluttering of the heart. No alleviation of her sufferings could be obtained from the remedies administered by Luke Hatton, who was in constant attendance upon her; nor will this be wondered at, since we are in the secret of his dark doings. On the contrary, the fever increased in intensity; and at the end of four days of unremitting agony,--witnessed with cynical indifference by the causer of the mischief,--it was evident that her case was desperate.
From the first Lady Lake had been greatly alarmed, for with all her faults she was an affectionate mother, though she had a strange way of showing her affection; and she was unremitting in her attentions to the sufferer, scarcely ever quitting her bedside. After a few days, however, thus spent in nursing her daughter, she herself succumbed to a like malady. The same devouring internal fire scorched her up, and raged within her veins; the same unappeasable thirst tormented her; and unable longer to fulfil her task, she confided it to Sarah Swarton, and withdrew to another chamber, communicating by a side door, masked by drapery, with that of Lady Roos.
Devoted to her mistress, Sarah Swarton would have sacrificed her life to restore her to health; and she cared not though the fever might be infectious. The gentleness and resignation of the ill-fated lady, which failed to move Luke Hatton, melted her
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