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Mast. Cer. What would your Excellence expect in Precedence matter of precedence, as in case you should meet with Denmark* any other ambassador at the masque?
Wh. I shall expect that which belongs to me as Ambassador from the Commonwealth of England, Scotland, and Ireland; and I know no other ambassador now in this Court besides myself, except the Ambassador of the King of Denmark, who, I suppose, hath no thoughts of precedence before the English Ambassador, who is resolved not to give it him if he should expect it.
Mast. Cer. Perhaps it may be insisted on, that he of Denmark is an ambassador of an anointed king, and you are only ambassador to the Protector—a new name, and not sacre.
Wh. Whosoever shall insist on that distinction will be mistaken, and I understand no difference of power between king and protector, or anointed or not anointed; and ambassadors are the same public ministers to a protector or commonwealth as to a prince or sultan.
Mast. Cer. There hath always been a difference observed between the public ministers of kings and of commonwealths, or princes of inferior titles.
Wli. The title- of Protector, as to a sovereign title, hath not yet been determined in the world as to superiority or inferiority to other titles; but I am sure that the nation of England hath ever been determined superior to that of Denmark. I represent the nations of England, Scotland, and Ireland, and the Protector, who is chief of them; and the honour of these nations ought to be in the same consideration now as it hath been formerly, and I must not suffer any diminution of that honour by my person to please any whatsoever.
Mast. Cer. I shall propose an expedient to you, that you may take your places as you come: he who comes first, the first place, and he who comes last, the lower place.
Wh. I shall hardly take a place below the Danish Ambassador, though I come into the room after him.
Mast. Cer. But when you come into the room and find the Danish Ambassador set, you cannot help it, though he have the upper place.
Wh. I shall endeavour to help it, rather than sit below the Danish Ambassador.
Mast. Cer. I presume you will not use force in the Queen's presence.
Wh. Master, it is impossible for me, if it were in the presence of ail the queens and kings in Christendom, to forbear to use any means to hinder the dishonour of my nation in my person.
Mast. Cer. I believe the Danish Ambassador would not bo so high as you are.
Wh. There is no reason why he should: he knows his nation never pretended to have the precedence of England, and you, being master of the ceremonies, cannot be ignorant of it.
Mast. Cer. I confess that your nation always had the precedence of Denmark when you were under a king.
Wh. I should never give it from them though they were under a constable.
Mast. Cer. If you insist upon it, the Danish Ambassador must be uninvited again, for I perceive that you two must not meet.
Wh. I suppose the gentleman would not expect precedence of me.
Mast. Cer. I can assure you he doth.
Wh. I can assure you he shall never have it, if I can help it. But I pray, Master, tell me whether her Majesty takes notice of this question of precedence, or did she wish to confer with me about it?
Mast. Cer. The Queen commanded me to speak with you about it, hoping that the question might be so composed that she might have the company of you both at her entertainment.
Wh. I shall stay at home rather than interrupt her Majesty's pleasures, which I should do by meeting the Danish Ambassador, to whom I shall not give precedence, unless he be stronger than I.
Mast. Cer. The Queen makes this masque chiefly for your Excellence's entertainment, therefore you must not be absent, but rather the Danish Ambassador must be uninvited; and I shall presently go about it.
Whitelocke returned a visit to Grave Eric, and showed him the Order of the Council touching the Swedish ^psships, much in favour of them, and which seemed very pleasing to the Grave; but he also showed to Whitelocke several letters which he had received from masters of Swedish ships, of new complaints of taking of their ships; and he desired that the Order showed him by Whitelocke might be extended to those whose ships had been since taken; which Whitelocke promised to endeavour, and said that he should be in a better capacity to serve him, and to procure discharges for their ships and goods, when he should be himself in England; and therefore desired that, by his despatch, they would hasten him thither, which the Grave
promised to do. At his going away, Grave Eric invited Whitelocke to dine with him on Monday next, and to come as a particular friend and brother, and not by a formal invitation as an ambassador. Whitelocke liked the freedom, and promised to wait on him; and was the more willing to come, that he might see the fashion of their entertainments, this being the first invitation that was made to him by any person in this country.
General Grave Wirtenberg visited Whitelocke. He is a Finlander by birth, of an ancient family, who had applied himself wholly to the military profession, wherein he became so eminent, and had done so great service for this Crown, that he was had in great esteem, especially with the soldiery. He was a RicksSenator, and one of the College of War, and at present had the charge of General of the Ordnance, which is of higher account here than in England, being next in command to the Generalissimo, and over the soldiery which belong not to the train, and is often employed as a general. This gentleman seemed worthy of his honour; he was of a low stature, somewhat corpulent, of a good mien, and plain behaviour, more in the military than courtly way. His discourse declared his reason and judgement to be very good, and his mention of anything relating to himself was full of modesty. He took great notice of the English navy and soldiery, and of the people's inclinations and violent desires of liberty. He spake only Swedish and High Dutch, which caused Whitelocke to make use of an interpreter, his kinsman Andrew Potley. The In the evening, according to the invitation from
masqu' the Queen, Whitelocke went to Court to the masque,
where he did not find the Danish Ambassador. But some of the Court took notice of the discourse which had been between the master of the ceremonies and Whitelocke touching precedence, and they all approved Whitelocke's resolution, and told him that the Queen highly commended him for it, and said that he was a stout and faithful servant to the Protector and to his nation, and that she should love him the better for it; nor was the contest the less pleasing because with the Dane in Sweden.
From eight o'clock at night till two the next morning they were at the masque, which was in the usual room fitted for the solemnity, in which the Queen herself was an actor. The floor where they danced was covered with tapestry and hung about with red velvet, but most adorned by the presence of a great number of ladies richly dressed and beautified both by nature and habit, attending on their mistress; and there were also many senators, officers, courtiers, and nobility,—a very great presence of spectators. The music was excellent, especially the violins, which were many, and rare musicians and fittest for that purpose. The Queen herself danced very well at two entries: in the first she represented a Moorish lady, in the second a citizen's wife; in both the properties were exactly fitted, and in all the rest of the actors and dancers.
There were no speeches nor songs; men acting men's parts, and women the women's, with variety of representations and dances. The whole design was to show the vanity and folly of all professions and worldly things, lively represented by the exact properties and mute actions, genteelly, without the least offence or scandal.