Burghley pp 191-217 | Cite as

The Character of a Statesman

  • B. W. Beckingsale


‘Your Lordship must pardon my evil scribbling for I am called so often from it as at every x lines I am forced to break off’, wrote Cecil. He was a busy man. ‘I alone carry the burden’, he asserted and on another occasion he complained, ‘I am like a slave put to do the drudgery.’ But his trials were the self-imposed mortifications of one of those lay ascetics in which the protestant world began to abound. He chastened his moral and physical weaknesses with hard labour. His puritan sense of vocation and of the virtue of work made him declare, ‘Serve God by serving the Queen, for all other service is indeed bondage to the Devil.’1


Foreign Affair Religious Conviction Mixed Polity British History Legal Training 
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© B. W. Beckingsale 1967

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  • B. W. Beckingsale

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