Henry VIII. to Anne Boleyn.
[ 1527 ]
For a present so beautiful that nothing could be more so (considering the whole of it), I thank you most cordially,
not only on account of the fine diamond and the ship in which the solitary damsel is tossed about, but chiefly for
the fine interpretation and the too humble submission which your goodness hath used towards me in this case; for I
think it would be very difficult for me to find an occasion to deserve it, if I were not assisted by your great
humanity and favour, which I have always sought to seek, and will seek to preserve by all the kindness in my power,
in which my hope has placed its unchangeable intention, which says, Aut illic, aut nullibi.1
The demonstrations of your affection are such, the beautiful mottoes of the letter so cordially expressed, that they
oblige me for ever to honour, love, and serve you sincerely, beseeching you to continue in the same firm and constant
purpose, assuring you that, on my part, I will surpass it rather than make it reciprocal, if loyalty of heart and a
desire to please you can accomplish this. I beg, also, if at any time before this I have in any way offended you, that
you would give me the same absolution that you ask, assuring you, that henceforward my heart shall be dedicated to you
alone. I wish my person was so too. God can do it, if He pleases, to whom I pray every day for that end, hoping that
at length my prayers will be heard. I wish the time may be short, but I shall think it long till we see one another.
Written by the hand of that secretary, who in heart, body, and will, is
Your loyal and most assured servant,
1. "Either there or nowhere."