Elizabeth R (1971–…): Season 1, Episode 3 - Shadow in the Sun - full transcript

His Excellency, the Ambassador of France.

So it is true.

Six thousand dead.

Once the Huguenot conspiracy was discovered,
Your Majesty...

I have been conspired against myself,
by Catholics.

I haven't found it necessary
to slaughter them in thousands.

Immediate action was called for, ma'am.

The King was persuaded
his life was in imminent danger.

Justice required the severest measures.

Did it require the murder of women and children?

When the people heard of the conspiracy,
Your Majesty,

they were so outraged,
they took matters into their own hands.

Are you telling me the King of France cannot
govern his own subjects in his own capital city?

And were the Huguenots not his subjects, too?

—They were rebels and traitors, ma'am.
—Even the children?

The King of France must show the world
that they were traitors, Fenelon,

that it was not malice and hatred
that took so many innocent lives.

Your Majesty...

And if he cannot, I tell you this.
There is a God in heaven will avenge them.

No one is more concerned than His Majesty
to put right any wrong, ma'am.

He is most anxious that there should be
no misunderstanding abroad.

This was purely an internal matter,
a French matter.

No enmity whatever was intended
towards England or any of the Protestant powers.

The King of France is an honourable man.
If he assures me that that is so then I accept it.

But if he can be persuaded to abandon
6,000 of his natural subjects,

I fear he may be persuaded to abandon
his alliance with a foreign queen.

On the contrary, ma'am, he hopes very much

that you will not think the alliance
between our two countries is in any way affected.

Tell him we are deeply grieved
at his loss of so many loyal subjects.

The Massacre of St Bartholomew's Eve
will go down in history

as the greatest crime since the crucifixion.

—You will tell your master I said so.
—My Lord Burghley...

There can be no further question of a marriage
between the Queen and the Duke of Alençon.

I hope that is fully understood in Paris.

—Why, naturally, my lord, but...
—There is nothing more to be said.

—LEICESTER: The axe, madam. It must be the axe.

BURGHLEY: The massacre was only the first step.
The next is to put Mary on your throne.

—HATTON: For your own safety, ma'am.
-Oh, my safety.

It would be an opportunity to deal
with the problem once and for all, ma'am.

And it would please a great many of your subjects.

The Puritans are seeking for revenge in kind
and they're right.

We should teach our Catholics
how they do things in France.

Even the bishops are for it.

There will be no massacre,
nor talk of massacre here.

Catholic and Protestant,
they are all my loyal subjects

and I shall protect them equally.

The Queen of Scots is neither loyal
nor a subject, ma'am.

She is my guest.

—The sort that will cut your throat in the night.
—She is my guest.

If she abuses my hospitality again,
then we will have to think again.

—Is it wise to wait and see?
—Always, Walsingham.

Very well, Your Grace, but I believe that
we should alert the coast and put the navy to sea.

Then attend to it.


The navy is to be instructed
not to attack French shipping.

—You're not still thinking of the Duke of Alençon?
—No, Robin.

If only Your Majesty had an heir, the Queen
of Scots would no longer be such a threat to us.

I want no husband. I am married to my country.

I don't want my subjects to feel jealous.

As they are loyal to me, so am I loyal to them.

Ah, now we shall know.

We should send an army to the Netherlands.
We should support Protestants everywhere.

—You know it's out of the question.

You should look in
at the treasury sometimes, Leicester.

Well, my lord, is it decided?
Does she keep her head or lose it?

—Neither. We wait and see.
-Oh, then she keeps it.

And as the Queen always waits,
and as there is always something else to see to,

I suppose she will keep it forever.

The Queen is decidedly indecisive
about so many things.

Well, in her nature and policy are so combined,
it's hard to tell one from the other.

ELIZABETH: Lord Burghley.

-Are you as disappointed as you seem, my lord?
—Can't you tell? Can't you see it in my eyes?

Oh, I have never dared to look into your eyes.

I always understood they were my cousin's.

Oh, the Queen lets me use them
for myself at times. You may look.


What if the Queen
were to change her mind after all?

She might not like what her eyes saw then.


I am the Queen's to command in all things,
of course, but...

I have heard it said
that she will let you command her.

Then you've heard wrong.
No man has ever commanded her or ever will.

—Not even in the bedchamber?
—Not even there.

If she marries now, and she won't,
it will only be for policy.

—And are you good policy or bad?

she will never marry me.

You must have a policy of your own, my lord?

Is it to marry? Or to burn?

-Oh, I burn.
—I believe I feel your heat.

I am a furnace, Lettice.

What would the Queen say
if she saw her eyes upon another?

Nothing, because she will not know, will she?


Robin! My eyes! My ears!

My nose! My mouth!

My arse!

Answer her, Leicester!

Use me as we you will,
my beauteous Virgin Queen.

All my parts are at your service.

Oh, would that you would use me
as I would you would?

No! No! Forbear!

I am a queen!

And yet, I am a woman still.

Come, my love.

But, no!

By all the saints in heaven,
I'll make your mind up for you.

—I am too narrow for a man.
—It's not a man I'm looking for.

Treason! Treason!

Yield as I...

Bravo! Bravo!

—Your Majesty, the Duke of Alençon is here.
—Good. I will see him.

Go on, Leicester! Have at her, man!

I believe, ma'am, it might be as well
not to act the play before the Duke.

No? He might find it instructive.

Thank you. Thank you.
We will see the rest tomorrow.

Won't you see where
I carry her off to bed, ma'am?

Tomorrow. Give them something, Fenelon.

It will take a larger man than that, ma'am,
to carry off the Queen of England.

I think my son is big enough, though, Simier.

I hope he's in a better mood.

He is obedient to Your Majesty's wishes,
as always, ma'am.

Well, what is it this time?

Am I to be shut up again for being a naughty boy?
Or is it my head you want?

Francis, I am your mother.
Remember the commandments.

—Which one? Thou shalt not kill?
—That is no way to speak to the Queen, my lord.

—I thought you said he was obedient, Simier.
—I said "as always", ma'am.

When I heard you'd sent for me,
I wondered if it was the start of a new massacre.

I thought perhaps I ought to flee,
but then I've fled so often,

it wouldn't be dignified to run away again.

So here I am, Mother. At your service.

Oh, you're very clever, Francis, very sharp.

—You could do yourself an injury.
—I don't need to.

There are so many other people
ready to do it for me.

Your quarrels with your brother
do serious injury to France.

I never quarrel with the King. It would be disloyal.
He quarrels with me.

My lord, there are quarrels
and they do great harm.

Then speak to him, not to me. I don't starve them.

CATHERINE: There would not be any quarrels
if you left Paris.


So it's exile.

I told you I was never summoned
to hear good news, jean.

Why, the Queen has excellent news
if you will only listen.

—Is my brother dead?
—My lord!

Don John is dead.

The Spaniards no longer have
a general in the Netherlands.

—Is this true?

It will take months for a new commander
to be appointed and arrive.

—Then God be praised.
—I am glad you cross yourself.

You have always been so active for the heretics,
I thought perhaps you had become one.

The Huguenots aren't heretics!
They're Frenchmen!

Oh, call them what you like.

Now is your chance to prove their loyalty.

If you lead them into Flanders, my lord,
you could drive the Spanish into the sea.

But the English would never allow that.
A French Netherlands?

They'd send an army at once.

CATHERINE: Not if you act intelligently, for once.

I believe, my lord, the Queen is reminding you
that you are still a bachelor.

I know, but that's impossible.

The negotiations were broken off
after the massacre.

Well, that unfortunate incident
was some time ago.

Queen Elizabeth's memory can be very short
when it suits her.

You must realise, though,
that we cannot finance you.

The treasury is empty, as you know.
You helped to empty it.

But you are the known
champion of the Huguenots, my lord.

And if you guarantee freedom of worship
to all Dutchmen of whatever faith...

—If you offer Elizabeth your hand...
—Think what it would mean for France, my lord.

It certainly opens up a prospect, my lord.

But what's behind it?
There must be something else here. Mother?

No, it has always been my dream
that all my sons should be kings.

Whatever you may think,
that is what I have always wished for.

You would have two crowns then, my lord.
England and the Netherlands.

But you must act at once,
before the Spaniards have time to reorganise.

Yes, well, but I...

I will help you all I can...my son.

Who knows? Simier may be a duke.

The Duke of London and Antwerp.

That is good. That is good.

Let them talk.


His Majesty the King of England,
Ireland, Wales and the Netherlands.

But, my lord, I don't think
I want to be Duke of London.

Real English dukes are dukes of counties,
aren't they?

—Can't I be Duke of Lancaster and York?
—You can be anyone you like.

—There's one kingdom you've left out.
—What's that?


—My lord, I think you should be content with four.
—My brother will never have any children.

You don't get heirs by dressing up as a woman
and prancing about with minions.

True, but he may dress up as a man one day.
My lord, I think four is enough.

Can Elizabeth have an heir? How old is she?

—Old enough.
-But is she young enough?

—That would be up to you, my lord.
—Yes, but can she? What's she like?

They say she is very, very majestical.

She's not... She's not like my mother, is she?

My lord, I think you should see for yourself.

No. No, not yet.

What I need now, jean, is a spy.

A loyal, devoted, love—struck, beady-eyed spy.

At your service, Your Majesty.

The Duke of Alençon begs Your Majesty
with all the fervour of a devoted heart

to accept these trifling tokens
of his most earnest admiration.

—ELIZABETH: Trifling and earnest?
—He can hardly be both, ma'am.

If he is trifling, you must take these back again.

He is so earnest, ma'am, that if you sent it back,
you would break his heart.

Then I will keep it.
I would never willingly break a man's heart.

You command so many hearts, madam.
You must break some.

But not willingly, Robin.

I wish I could tell you
how happy this will make him, ma'am.

Tell him he makes me very happy.
Tell him he is a jewel among princes.

—And I shall wear him on my sleeve.
—He would rather be closer to your heart, ma'am.


—A little higher, ma'am.

He would hang there with all his soul, ma'am.


Oh, I do not speak for myself, Sir Christopher,
although I wish I dared.

You speak quite well enough for me.

—If my master were here, ma'am...
—Well, what would he say?

—That he was jealous.
—Of whom?

Of this jewel, my lord,
because it will lie where he would lie himself.

The Duke is very forward for one who has not
so much as set eyes on Her Majesty.

I am only his echo, my lord, his feeble imitation.

Yet I swear,
report alone was enough for him to know...

Know what?

Where he would lie, my lord.

—You are very bold for an echo. What's your name?
—Simier, ma'am.

Ah, then you are not an echo, but an ape.

—He's a monkey certainly.

He is an ape, his master's ape,
and now he shall be mine, too.

I am your creature in everything, ma'am.

Is an ape a suitable messenger of love?
Shouldn't his master speak his lines for himself?

Yes, marriage by proxy is one thing, but wooing...

—My master only wishes he were here.
—Then why isn't he?

She calls him her ape.

—What does that make my son?
—The king of England.


But he must go there himself.

She insists that she will do nothing
until she has seen him first.

—Will she like what she sees?
—Well, she likes what she's heard.

She's very capricious.

—And he is young.

Oh, yes, he is certainly that.


A queen without an heir
cannot be too choosy about looks, ma'am.

—Well, I wouldn't have him.
—Not even for your country?

Ah, well.

Of course, she is very fond of saying
that she is married to England.

If she wants a baby, she will have to be divorced.

My old rooms.

—Alençon is coming. He's set out at last.
—Will he get here?

—They were offering 2—1 against in the city.
—Generous odds.

—Will you take them?
—I never gamble if I can help it,

but if I did, well, 2—1 would tempt me.

What about 3—1
against the marriage ever taking place?

Even more tempting.

You think so?

—I think it would be money thrown away.
—You're not usually so cautious.

—Ah, Leicester.
—He wants too much.

60,000 a year and a coronation. It's impossible.

Well, 60,000 is too much of course,
though he'll have to have something.

As for the coronation, some formal recognition
of his position will have to be made.

What do we get in return? Nothing.

We get a very great deal. We get the Netherlands
at very little expense to ourselves.

We get peace with France,
Spain removed from our doorstep.

We get prosperity.

It's a good thing you're not a betting man. You let
your hopes get the better of your judgement.

—We get an heir, Walsingham.
—Or lose the Queen in the attempt.

Nonsense. Many women of her age
have had fine, healthy children.

And many others have died.

I'd rather we had a childless queen
than a queenless country.

—With a French Catholic regent?
—You exaggerate as usual.

The Duke is notorious for his tolerance.

All he asks for himself
is for mass to be said in his private apartment.

—Nobody can object to that.
—The whole country objects.

A few Puritans! They don't rule here yet.
I hope they never will.

I'd rather they ruled here than the French.

But there's no question of that.

He is to be her husband, nothing more.

Well, I'm willing to bet my whole estate
he won't be.

—Of course he won't.
—You're wrong, Leicester.

No. I know the Queen.

-She'll never marry anyone.

You have been away from court, haven't you?
Important business, no doubt.

You'll find that things have advanced
in your absence.

We're beyond diplomacy this time.

We're down to human nature.

Is the Earl of Leicester here?

—Shall I go and see, ma'am?
—Yes. No! No, it doesn't matter.

Surely we can dispense with this, Simier.
You see how much it upsets Her Majesty.

I wish it could be avoided, my lord.

But it is only right that the Duke should know
his prospects before he commits.

Everyone agrees the prospects are excellent.

Then what can be the objection
in confirming them

with Her Majesty's own physicians?

You sound like a horse coper
haggling over a brood mare.

We are commanded
to be fruitful and multiply, ma'am.

It makes me no better than a beast.

We are halfway to the angels, all of us,
and you stand...

It's a very uncomfortable, straddling sort of place

with our head in the clouds
and our feet in the mire.

We must endure the condition
in which God has placed us, ma'am.

If we were pure spirit, we could not multiply.
There is no marrying in heaven.

Which is why, no doubt, we look forward to it.

—These metaphysics are all very well...
—All the Duke wants is children, my lord.

I believe you want them, too.

The whole nation would rejoice
in Your Majesty's joy.

Very well, the Duke shall have his assurance
and as many children as my womb can bear.



If you wish to say no,
I will try to find a way round it.

No. No, thank you.

I am ready, gentlemen.


Oh, the Queen's serious enough about it.

—The question is, is he?
—I see no reason to doubt it.

Nor do I.

He certainly gives
every appearance of seriousness.

I daresay.

He has a great deal to gain
from making a show of wooing the Queen,

but have you ever considered how much more
he might gain from marrying elsewhere?

I'm sure he has.



There are princesses in Spain. They're not queens,
but they're young and they're Catholic.

Leicester, your suspiciousness amounts
sometimes almost to madness.

He's already making demands
that he knows we can't meet.

Every concession we make, he'll raise the price.

And when we object, he'll say we aren't
being serious and hurry off to Spain

with a very convincing appearance
of anger and disgust.

Then France and Spain will be united against us.
The Netherlands will be lost forever.

And those who urge this marriage on the Queen
will have so much to answer for

they'll still be explaining it in their graves.

—It's true he has dawdled over coming here.
—He has not dawdled.

He couldn't come until the negotiations
were properly advanced.

The delay shows how seriously
he's been taking them.

And he is coming now.

Only to delay things longer.

You will be glad to know, my lords,
the doctors see no reason to suppose

—that I am different from other women.
—Then they are fools, ma'am.

You are more precious to us
than all the other women in the world.

I only mean they can foresee nothing
to prevent me having children.

Please, God, Your Majesty may have many.

Well, I cannot hope for very many of course
but I can do my duty and I mean to.

You are welcome back to court, Leicester.
Will you come and tell me your news?

With the greatest pleasure.

Do you think she knows?

Well, I hardly think
she would have smiled at him if she did.

—Knows what?
-Oh, nothing.

I don't like not knowing secrets. What is it?

He has done what he was
so against the Queen doing.

Oh, you mean Lettice Knollys.

His marriage is hardly a secret, Hatton.

Yes, I thought you probably knew.

I'm sorry it seems so widely known.

Well, her father insisted on witnesses,
with reason and very properly,

-but where there are witnesses...
—It's not a crime to marry.

Do you think the Queen will agree with you?

I do not consider it my business to tell her of it
and I shall not seek out opportunities to do so.

—Nor will I.
—Nor will anyone in his senses.

Well, you needn't look at me.

Men were killed in the old days
for carrying less awful messages.

Well, if none of us tell her...

She's bound to find out eventually.

And then, if I were Leicester,

I think I'd spend a year or two
quietly circumnavigating the globe.

I doubt if his new wife would like that.

Oh, if I were her, I think I'd go with him.

I'm sorry you won't look me in the eye, Robin,
but I understand.

—Do you?
—Do you imagine it's easy for me to look at you?

Well, there's no need to be so frightened,
I'm not going to banish you.

But I must ask you to promise me something.


Not to be jealous.

Or if you can't help feeling it, not to let it show.

You must know the Duke
can never be more to me than just a husband.

Must he be even that?

If I choose him to be.

But why should you?
There's no need for you to marry.

Well, some people think there is.
Ask your colleagues. Ask Sussex.

He has a thousand good reasons for it and I...
Well, I half think it myself.

-But what do you feel...in your heart?
—Well, I haven't consulted my heart.

I haven't considered it
and I don't want you to consider it, either.

—I must at least consider my own.
—No. The Duke will be here any day.

I want you to act toward him as though
he were the considered choice of my heart.

—I don't think I shall be able to.
—Well, if I can, so can you.

Oh, Robin, we know each other too well
for me to command you.

I've always obeyed you.
I've wished sometimes that I had not.

So have I.

Will you let me just once more
try to dissuade you?


—I beg you!
—No, I don't like you to beg.

People beg for forgiveness.

There is nothing you have ever done, Robin,
for which you need to ask pardon.

Just do as I ask. That is all.

—It is a great deal.
—If you love me...

—You know how much.

And you know how much I depend on your love
and will depend on it.

—My lord!

What the devil do you think you're doing?

I heard a noise.
I thought you were one of Walsingham's spies.

Well, I'm not. And put that damn thing down!
It reminds me of Mother.

Oh, God, I'm tired.

—I didn't expect you till tomorrow.
—I rode all night.

You can see how passionate I am
by the state of my boots.

Oh, God. When did you arrive?

Oh, an hour to two ago.
I don't know, I've been asleep.

—Where have you been?
—With the Queen.

Look...what I brought you.

—What on earth is that?
—That, my lord, is the royal nightcap.

Good God.

I stole it. Then I confessed to my crimes
and begged forgiveness,

saying that until you could see her in it yourself,
you would never sleep.

And I slept through the whole thing.

—My lord, I think you should wake up.
—What for?

Don't you want to see the Queen?

It would make a splendid impression
if you were to stride through the royal apartments

just as you are now, all dirty and dishevelled.

If you were to throw yourself down at her feet,
that would show how ardent you were and...

My lord, don't you want
to make a splendid impression?



—What mischief is your monkey up to now, ma'am?
—No mischief.

—The Duke is here.

And wanted to come and see me at once,
all dirty and dishevelled though he was.

The monkey could scarcely restrain him he says.

We shall have to get used to
some strange French manners, I daresay.

—He got him to bed at last.
—Well, that is what he came for.

—He says he wishes to God I were with him.
—So do I.

Listen to this.

"For he could then with greater facility
convey his thoughts to me."

Facile indeed, ma'am. We all know
there are some thoughts too deep for words.

And some words go far beyond the thoughts
which inspire them.

He cannot have come all this way
only to talk, surely?

—Well, to eat, too. Anyway, I am invited to dinner.
—Nothing else?

Oh, I think that's enough for a first meeting.


I wonder if what they've told him
goes anywhere near the truth.

I shouldn't worry about that. They say that he's
not exactly the picture that Simier's been drawing.

"They." They say he's hunchbacked,
they say he's deformed.

They say anything
that comes into their addled heads.

—What have they said about me?
—You have nothing to fear, ma'am.


I am old enough to be his mother.

Many young men prefer a maturer woman.

Or is that maturer women lust after young men?

You're determined to see the dark side of things.
I cannot argue with you.

Did I ask you to argue?

I want your advice, Frances. What shall I wear?
I want to look very... Oh, very as I used to look.

What do you think would be appropriate, hmm?

White, ma'am.
You cannot possibly wear anything else.

—How do I look?

I wish I hadn't come on ahead of my trunks.
These boots have got such damn low heels.

Straightness matters more than inches, my lord.

Remember, you're a soldier, a man of deeds,
not a courtier.

Doesn't she prefer courtiers?

—Why is that table only set for two?
—You will be dining with her alone, my lord.

—I shall be here waiting on you.

—Don't you leave the room, whatever you do!

Dutch courage.

Her Majesty the Queen.

The Duke of Alençon, Your Majesty.

Oh, they lied to me! They lied!

—Who, my lord?
—They told me you were beautiful.

But you are above beauty
as an angel is above a man,

the commonest woman may be beautiful,
but you...

I told you, my lord, Her Majesty summed up
all the beauty of the world.

Summed up?
She exceeds it, as the sun exceeds the moon.

Rise, my lord, I beg you.

No, I would sooner stay here.
I feel it is my natural place.

—You carry courtesy too far. It is not fair.
—Fair, you are so fair.

—You look at me. May I not look at you?
—I dare not let you.

I hope they have lied to me, too, my lord.

—About what?
—About you.

I don't know what they could have said
except that I am unworthy of you.

Well, they have said
that you are very ugly, stunted.

Who told you that? I'll kill him!

I see he was wrong.
You stand as straight as an L.

—You must tell me who it was.
-Oh, no. I'm very grateful to him.

He has succeeded in doing what I could not.
He has got you off your knees, my lord.

—Will Your Majesty be seated?
—Thank you, Simier.

You have a very faithful servant here, my lord.
I find he has told me nothing but the truth.


—I think probably on that subject...
—If someone would help me.

Gladly, Walsingham. How?

My problem is whether or not
I'm supposed to know.

—Know what?
—That the Duke is here.

—My servants tell me it's a profound secret.
—Well, I think you can admit to suspecting it.

It would be better not to discuss matters of state
with your servants at all.

They talk of nothing else.

And since the whole country does know he's here,
it seems idle to deny it.

Well, it's early days yet. The country will have to
be won over to the idea of the marriage slowly.

Once it realises the benefits to be gained,
it will, of course, be delighted.

-But there are bound to be doubters, at first.
—There seem a good many already.

—Have you not been to church this last week?
—Well, it's no business of the preachers, either.

Walsingham is a Puritan. The sermons he chooses
to hear are as contentious as they are long.

—And here is his text.
-Burghley's right, Walsingham.

Preaching is better confined to matters of religion.

Leicester surprises me. I should have thought...

But are we to let it simply happen?

It's not a simple matter
of whether or not it happens.

My lords, I cannot tell you with what pleasure it is
that I commend the Duke to you.

We have awaited your coming
with impatience, my lord.

We are truly glad to see you.

We all pray the results will be as happy
for our two countries as for Her Majesty and you.

Lord Sussex and Lord Burghley speak for us all.
You are most welcome.

—My lord.
—Thank you.

Thank you all.

You make me feel what I hope very soon
to be here...at home.

Oh, I hope we can do better than that for you.

I understand your life at home
has not always been easy.

Oh, well... I am not unhappy to leave it.

Because I could not imagine
a greater happiness than to be here, always.

We cannot hope that you will give us
so much happiness as that, my lord.

What, Robin?

The Duke will wish to be
in the Netherlands, too, madam.

I only hope that he will allow me to go with him.

That is handsomely said.
Ah, but I could not let you both go.

You would not be so cruel as to forbid me.
Nothing else would hold me back.

I find it hard to forbid you anything,
as everyone knows.

Nothing would give me greater pleasure
than to count the Earl among my commanders.

Nothing would do so much to guarantee
our certain victory. I hope you will not forbid him.

Oh, well, if you both plead against me,
what can I say?

I wish you'd tell me about
your last campaign, my lord.

It was not glorious, but I think I can
truthfully say it was not inglorious, either.

With a little more money
and a little more cooperation among the Dutch...

I see that you are pleased
with your admirer, ma'am.

I think I like him better than any man
I have ever known.

Oh, that is too unkind.

Oh, but I love you, Hatton,
as I love all my subjects.

-But the Duke is not my subject and so...
—And so he's a better man?

Surely, you would not say that.

I don't think we need quibble, Hatton.
The Duke will be a subject soon.

If indeed he is not one already.
And I rather suspect he is.

He is Your Majesty's slave and vassal.

But I don't want a slavish husband, Simier.
That would never do.

I shall remind you of that, ma'am,
should you find ever fault with his boldness.

—Your Majesty.

—The Duke's personal charms are unquestionable.
-Oh, they are. They are.

—I mean to have him. You understand that?
—I'm delighted, ma'am, delighted.

Then why are you hesitating?

I only wish to say, ma'am, that I hope
you will not be so swayed by your heart

as to make any promises as to the Duke's army.

Lord Burghley, do I really look
so head over heels in love

that you think I will promise anything
without consulting you?

No one needs to teach me
that marriage is a civil contract

as well as one before God and between two hearts.

But you will allow, I think,
that it is happier if the hearts speak

before the preachers and lawyers?

"You shall know your enemy
by his fair words and smiling countenance.

"For Satan cometh ever in beauteous raiment

"and bearing precious gifts."

God is not one, he sayeth, but many.

He hath not one altar, but many altars

and you may worship him where you will.

But I say unto you,
the Lord God Almighty hath said

thou shalt have no other god but me.

Thou shalt cast down all other altars
but my altars.

And thou shalt root out
all other worship in the land.

Woe unto them that suffer the heretic
to flourish in the place of the Godly,

who suffers their altars to be set up
when they should be put down.

Their idols are graven images to be established
in the House of the Lord, God of Israel.

Woe unto them I say.
And again I say, woe unto them...

And I say, Mr Preacher, I will hear no more!

Go on, sir.

You've preached only 30 minutes,
surely you have more.

I will not be abused in my own chapel
by a canting, obstinate Puritan.

—Silence him, ma'am, for God's sake.
—It's an insult to me and an insult to the Duke.

—Will you speak to the preacher yourself?
—I dare not trust myself.

—Send him to the Tower, ma'am.
—I'd rather hang him.

If I may say so, ma'am,
that would silence him but not the multitude.

—I suggest banishment might be a better course.
-Oh, no.


Yes, there must be many vacant livings
in the north.

I suggest Northumberland.
Let him pray to the sheep.

There are plenty of Catholics there.
Let him try his hand at converting them!

—An excellent suggestion, ma'am.
—Your Majesty is merciful.

He is never to come near this court again.

By your leave, ma'am,
it might be advisable to issue a ban on such texts

—as lend themselves to that kind of preaching.
—Then attend to it.

—I wish you luck.
—Well, it should be easy enough.

I have heard hatred and vengeance
preached on God and His love.

Where have you been, my lord?
Where has this monkey been leading you?

Only to mass, ma'am,
we've been worshipping God.

I confess my heart was not in it.

What, will you be converted to our way, then?

—My worship is only for you.
—Ah, that is blasphemy in any religion.

—To say I love you?
-But do you not love God?

Love him, yes. As a man must.

-But I love you out of choice.
—That must be heretical.

Oh, I worship you both, but the one is a duty
and the other a delight.

You should delight in your duty, my lord.

She is too quick for you, my lord.

Well, I am a lover not a theologian, and God,
who knows everything, knows me for what I am.

Will you wear this as a token of my true devotion?

Oh, Francis...

It was my mother's.

—See how it glitters. It's like a star.
—You are the star and its light is lost in yours.

We all grow dim in Her Majesty's presence.

Oh, don't say that.
The Duke has his own way of shining.

You'll find him a sun, ma'am, when he rises.

Forgive him, ma'am.
He really is a monkey, he has no shame.

Well, it would be a shame indeed
not to speak the truth.

—He makes me jealous.

He is your pet. I wish I were.

—Pets go with their mistresses everywhere.
—Then you shall be my pet, too.

—You shall be my frog.
-Oh, I'm too warm—blooded for a frog. Believe me.

No. You are a Frenchman and therefore a frog.

May I leap where I choose, then?
I see no other advantage.

You are ignorant, very ignorant.

Burghley, instruct the Duke.

The Romans, my lord,
used the frog as a love charm.

It signifies mutual ardour and constancy.

Then I am a frog,
and I shall croak nothing but love.

And as I am a beast now, not a man,

I can worship you as a goddess
without any fear of blaspheming.


—How well are we doing, do you think?
—Better than we could have hoped. Look.

Well, I feel so damn silly sitting here
while everyone dances.

—Everyone knows I'm in London.
—That's just her way of doing things.

—She never does anything directly.
—It's too devious for me.

It's very clever. The English don't like the French.
She's breaking it to them as gently as possible.

Not too gently, I hope. I can't wait forever.

Well, she always said she'd have to see you
before she'd go any further. Well, now she has.

—It's very damp, England.
—It's no damper than the Netherlands.

I'm sure that's why she calls me her frog.

I'm supposed to leap
from one wet marsh to another.

—I hope I don't get rheumatism.
—The Queen's bed will keep you warm and dry.

Bow, my lord.

She's a splendid woman, isn't she?
Plays the game for all it's worth.

Well, it's worth a great deal.

—I told you to stay away.
-Oh, but I was invited.

—You're to leave at once.
-Oh, but I love dancing.

It's so dreary stuck at home.

Isn't it a splendid ball?

—Has the Queen seen you?
-Oh, she has seen me. She was very friendly.

—Do you want me to tell her?
-Oh, I don't think so.

-Get your cloak.
-Oh, don't be so difficult, Robin.

You seem to forget I'm her cousin. Besides,
I had to see the man she's going to marry.

I think he'll do, don't you?

ELIZABETH: Robin! La volta.


ALL: La volta! La volta!

ALL: La volta!

La volta!

La volta!

La volta!


—Where are you going?
—To make my presence.

Forgive me, ma'am!

I grew so jealous in my hiding place,
I could sit still no longer.

My lord!

To see you dancing with other men
was more than my blood could stand.

Either you must let me partner you,
or you must join me in my hiding place.

I shall be honoured.




Bravo indeed!

Well, my lord, how long will it be?

Six months, Simier, not a day longer.

You named him perfectly, ma'am.

When he was dancing, I thought
he was going to leapfrog right over you.

Oh, yes, Frances, he will do very well.
Very well indeed.

When will it be?

—When will what be?
—The wedding.

Oh, I long to do this for you
on your marriage night.

There'll be some leaping then, I'm sure.

He loves you, ma'am. There's no doubt about it.

I've never seen such a diamond.

It was his mother's. I understood its meaning.

Well, it means he loves you, what else?

It means she wants me to have him. I wasn't sure.

What does it matter what she wants?
He's old enough to decide for himself.

-Oh, ma'am.

Younger sons are never old enough
to decide for themselves.

You should know that.

Well, then, I'm glad you've decided for him.

It was his mother who sent him,
but for once Queen Catherine and I are agreed.

I mean to have him.

Well, as long as he has you, and you love him.

I do. I do.

—Well, then, when will it be?

You ask too many questions.
I'm tired and I want to go to bed.

And so does he. Oh, you won't delay now...

If you delay much longer
with my nightgown, Frances,

I shall have to find a nimbler lady—in—waiting.

Oh, it isn't fair. I can't find anyone.

—Where, oh, where?

Where? Where?

Love is even blinder than they say.

I'm glad there are no preachers
or members of the House of Commons here.

It's blindness like this...

Wait till he's gone. It won't be long now.

—Yes, I know, but all this...
—Till then, keep quiet.

I recognise that voice. Robin, where are you?

Out of sight is out of mind.

What did you say?

I said I'm out of your reach, madam.


Oh, now! Now I have you, Robin.

Why, no, this is not Robin. This is Francis.

Who else should you have?

I am caught indeed. You may remove the bandage.

I do not need my eyes to tell me who I love.

Oh, Francis.

Till you return, these eyes will be blind with tears.

Won't they, my lords?

She can't do it.

I won't say it again.

But she can't.

Well, I shall go on saying that she must.

We've had to put off Parliament once.

Oh, it's not just Parliament, it's the people.
The people love her.

It's their love for her
which binds this country together.

Destroy that and you destroy the kingdom.

Very well, but are you prepared to go and tell her
that the people forbid her to marry?

My lords...

understanding that the country does not, as yet,

love the Duke as she does herself,

Her Majesty asks for our advice,

and it is time we gave it.

Must we?

I should have said she commands it.

In that case, may we take it
that she herself doesn't know what to do?

It is never wise to assume Her Majesty's feelings.

If she wants to break it off,
I'll be happy to take the blame,

but I do not think it will be blame.

Then suggest it and see.

Oh, what does she expect us to say?

That the people are crying out for her to marry?

That the wedding won't most likely
be celebrated by a massacre of Catholics

that will make St Bartholomew's Eve
look like Bartholomew Fair?

I see there is no further point in argument,
but I must ask you this.

If the Queen is determined to marry,
will you support her or not?

Well, if she insists, of course,
but with the gravest misgivings.



Yes, but I pray to God
that she will listen to reason.

We need not ask you for your opinion, Sussex.

Well, I shall tell Her Majesty then
that we are divided and irreconcilable,

except in loyalty to her.

You do not make it easy for me.

Do you imagine it's been easy for us?

I shall do my best.

He says he's jealous of the letter
because it will touch your hand and he cannot.


There, now our hands have touched.
It doesn't seem a very long letter.

— No.
- signers, scusi.

But he says he can "hardly see to write

"because of the tears that fall ceaselessly
from his eyes."

Very gallant.

I do believe there are little pans of salt
scattered over the paper, ma'am.

Of course, he was writing at sea.
They may just be the spray.

I will have the text
without the learned commentary, please.

His "affection for you will last forever".

He is, and will remain,
"the most faithful and affectionate slave

who could ever exist upon earth,"
and, as such, on the brink of the troublesome sea,

he kisses your feet.

Is that all?

Perhaps the sea troubled him too much
to write further.

-But there's one from your monkey, too.

He says...

The Duke got him up early
to discourse on your divine beauty,

and about his great grief at leaving Your Majesty,
the jailer of his heart and mistress of his liberty.

Though, without asking, he takes the liberty
of humbly kissing your lovely hands.

Hands and feet. Where will they venture next?

You must read my letter from the Duke.

It is a garden full of sweet—smelling
compliment and love.

A pleasure, ma'am.

You look as though you've just smelt
something bad. What's the matter?

I've just been with your council, ma'am.

Oh? And what do they say?

They say they will follow your wishes
in everything.


I asked for their opinion, not their obedience.

Well, they feel they cannot give it.
Not until they know exactly what you want.

I had expected better than this, my lords.
Much better.

You call yourselves my council
and will not give me advice when I ask for it?

I tell you, I blame myself exceedingly

that I was ever so simple
as to let you consider the matter at all.

All I get is wrangling and disputation.

LEICESTER: If Your Majesty would only tell us
what you did expect...

I expected a unanimous and universal request
for me to proceed with the marriage,

not haverings and doubts!

Your Majesty, we were only concerned
with the safety of the realm.

You dare, then, to doubt my wisdom
in having a child of my own body

to inherit and continue
the line of my father and grandfather?

The line of Henry VII, who made this country one?
Of Henry VIII, who gave us our religion?

You would bring it to an end!

You have had too much peace
and prosperity, I suppose.

You want civil and religious wars again,
with son against father and father against son.

—That is what we had before.
—Your Majesty...

My marriage would make this kingdom safer
than a 100,000 men.

WALSINGHAM: The people fear
for their religion, ma'am.


So you hide behind the people, Walsingham,
with your long, Puritan face.

Well, I do not wish to see it.

You would not dare to tell me to mine
that you think so slenderly of me

that I am not to be trusted
with the safety of the church, I suppose.

If that is your opinion,
you had better hide your face indeed!

—Your Majesty has only to say...
—I have said!


You must forgive me.

I am a woman.

You have wives, you have children,
you know what it is to love and be loved.

It is your right. It is every man's right,
yet, in your wisdom, you would make me barren.

LEICESTER: Your Majesty...

I have denied myself everything for my country.

What have you denied
that you would take this from me, too?

Your Majesty...

you know that there is no doubt in my mind,
except one,

—which I never thought to find there.

Will you betray me, too?

Madam, we are unanimous

in agreeing to support you
whichever way you decide.

If only you will say.

Say what?

Whether you truly wish to marry the Duke or not.

How can I say if you will not advise me?

Besides, I do not think it is suitable
to tell you my feelings.

I looked to you to urge me, to beg me to marry.

As you have kept your feelings from me,

so shall I keep mine from you.


Good God, I had not expected that.

I feel...whipped.

So you should be.

But where does it leave us? I really do not know.

It leaves us, my lords, precisely where we were.

Your Majesty.

You have made good speed.
Your master is well, I hope.

As well as can be expected
out of your presence, ma'am.

He wishes he had wings to bring him back sooner.
Every minute away from you is a torture to him.

Well, we must all endure more rackings
before this business is done.

Frances, where are the articles?

Are the councillors agreed, ma'am?
This is excellent news.

They have agreed to the concession
which the Duke demanded.

He and his household are guaranteed

the right to hold Catholic services
in his private chapel.

He will be overjoyed, ma'am.

There is, however, a new clause.
I regret it, but it is essential.

What is it?

—The articles must be suspended for two months.
-But Your Majesty...

You are aware of the difficulties.
I trust you will not make more.

-But I don't understand why...
—I must have time

—to bring the people to consent to the marriage.
—The people?

I cannot help myself, believe me.

If the Duke were here,
I would marry him tomorrow.

You may tell him that.

I cannot accept any alteration to the terms,
ma'am, without the Duke's agreement.

If he does not agree, Parliament will never accept.
Believe me, two months is scarcely time enough.

Very well. But the Duke will be very disappointed.

I am myself.

Perhaps this will raise your spirits, ma'am.

Thank you.

—Will you not read it?
—When I am alone!

Will you not look at the seal, at least?

Ma'am, an emerald!

Like the jewel in the forehead of the toad.

You are a good servant, Simier,
and an even better messenger.

Give this to your lord.

Tell him I love him.

Two months will seem an eternity, ma'am.

Oh, they will pass, Simier, like everything else.

—Shall I read the letter, ma'am?

What is the matter, ma'am?


Let me help you.

No one can help me, Frances.

I cannot even help myself.

I am the Queen, and alone,

and that is what it is to be the Queen.

Oh, ma'am, you must not let
what Parliament thinks or says upset you.

You have only to speak to them firmly.

But I am not firm. I am weak.

I have always been weak
and done what other people wanted,

till that, now, I hardly know what I want myself.

Don't you? I think you do.


I want to be young again.

I want to have my hopes again.

And I want not to feel time...

like a dead child in my womb.

Well, Jacques, what sort of a day is it?
Can we put out again?

Well, the gale still blows, my lord.
The Captain says it may go on for a week.

Then England might as well be China
for all the hope we have of getting there.

Here, Menuche, it's time to wake up.

Get up.

—What's her name?
—Marie, my lord.

Well, get her out.

Tell her to come back tonight.

How the devil did you get here?

I swam, I think.

Bring him some brandy. And take...
What's her name?

—Marie, my lord.
—Yes, well, take her out.

I've been trying to get across for three days.
It's impossible.

Oh, well, we had the wind behind us,
of course, my lord.

Oh, I've done a great many things in your service,

but that is the last time
I cross the Channel in a storm.

I don't think I shall ever eat again.
My stomach's in the stomach of a fish.

Yes. Mine went the same way yesterday.

It's a good thing you didn't come, my lord.

—What happened?
—She's blowing hot and cold again.

—She loves you very tenderly, but...
-But what?

She wants to marry you, I'm sure of that.

There's your proof. Nearly hung myself with it,

but the ship was tossing so much,
I couldn't tie a knot.

Her garter. More underclothes.

I shall have a wardrobe soon.

Oh, well, she'll strip naked for you anytime.
This was her mien.

She's frightened, my lord.

They've been telling her you'll get her into a...

-a quarrel with Spain.
—Who has?

Oh, Leicester and Walsingham.

So, nothing's changed.

Oh, yes, it has.

She doesn't seem to mind
the prospect as much. Here.

And she's sending you £30,000.

Well, that's what I call a real love token.

Yes and no.
She wants a guarantee that if Spain attacks her,

France will come to her aid.

She's negotiating directly?

Walsingham's in Paris already.

Is he? And what am I supposed to do?

Capture every town you can.

I knew my mother would thwart me somehow.

You're not thwarted, my lord.
You're making excellent progress.

£30,000 won't last me long.

Oh, there'll be more.
You ought to count your blessings.

Yes, while I have them.

Well. Here's to Elizabeth.

I'd sooner have her money than her body any day.

I think you'll get both in the end, my lord.

Is this the Lord Walsingham?

Sir Francis, madam.

I've been explaining the necessity
to fix a date for the marriage, Your Majesty.

Yes, Sir Walsingham, we must have a definite day.

But, Your Majesty, we have no intention.

Alliances on paper are all very well.

They serve their purpose
then they are torn up and thrown away.

But a union between two houses
is a bond of blood.

I regret, madam, that under the circumstances,

the bond you speak of is...not likely to have issue.

Does Queen Elizabeth admit so much?

It is...

It is understood that such is the case.

Well, I am sorry.

Very sorry.

Not to have children.

Not to watch them grow up

and to see them
take their places in the world as...

as my sons have taken theirs.

You will tell your Queen
how much I pity her, Sir Walsingham.

But it makes no difference
to the need for the marriage.

I respect the feelings of your Queen,

but the alliance
can only come into force at the altar.

But that, madam, would be like
an open declaration of war against Spain.

On the contrary,

it will prevent the Spaniards
declaring war on both of us.


The Spanish may complain,
but they will not dare do anything.

Give your Queen my compliments

and say I am impatient for the day
when I may call her daughter.

Well...it won't be long now.

Oh, he's so impetuous.

He just pulls on his hat
and takes the first boat to come and see you.

I wish my husband had wooed me like that.

A man who pulls on his hat on an impulse
may pull it off again at a whim.

Oh, ma'am. You know he loves you.

I know he says he loves me. Oh, love.

All my life, men have been saying they love me.
I'm still a virgin, almost an...

—The Earl of Leicester, ma'am.

Is he here?

—And you will conduct me to him.

Not immediately.


It's still not too late. You can send him away.
You have every reason.

But why should I? We are betrothed.

I wish to God you weren't.

Well, it's no good wishing.

You have been very kind, Robin,
but it is too far now to turn back.

Forgive me,
but don't you mean to turn back...eventually?

I don't see how I can.

If I do, we lose an alliance with France
and he marries a Spaniard.

That must be avoided at whatever cost.

Oh, he'll stay single if you pay him.
The other cost is too great.

It won't cost me so very much.

Giving up things for my country
has become my second nature,

and my virginity is no use to me or to anyone else.

And what about your first nature?

—I hardly know.
—I think you do.

—You should not say such things.
—I should be ashamed not to.


Your Majesty, the Duke is here.

Send him away. We don't need him.

—I think we do.
-Are you jealous, Robin?

Of course.

I mean, of his victories.

Well, that has nothing to do with it.

No, my lord.

-We're talking about marriage, not war.
—Well, they're one and the same thing.

But we are not irrevocably committed
to either, are we, Burghley?

Well, ma'am, we're getting precariously close
to one or the other.

Then let us meet the danger face to face.

You will conduct me to him?

I had rather be excused.

If I cannot, neither can you.

I am ready, my lord.

I'm glad to see so many smiling faces.

Well, my lord, in all confidence,
they are not all to be trusted.

That is hardly a secret.

No, but if you'll take my advice,
you will not listen to promises.

Don't leave England until you are married,
or you never will be.

You mean, the Queen never will be.

Well, take it as you will. This is the last chance.

Never fear. I won't budge
until the Queen is well and truly begging.

Which she will be if you persist.

She is very taken with your person,
if I may so phrase it.

It is only the politics which hold her back.

It seems unfortunate, if I may so phrase it,

that the Duke's arrival should be celebrated
in such an offensively Spanish manner.

—What do you mean?
—My lord, you are most welcome.

You have been too long away from home.

My lady, I have burned to be here,

and now that I see you,
I am a blaze that shall never be put out.

The three jesuits who were burned yesterday
felt a different kind of fire.

The jesuits deserve all they get.

There will be beacons on every hilltop
to celebrate the wedding, my lord.

I shall live in their light all my life.

Come, let us walk.
And you will come with us, too, my lords.

We have devised some entertainment
for you, Francis.

We have not been idle...

There's a smiling face I do not like.

I wish that had been grinning
above yesterday's flames.

I think I know the match to light his pyre.

Oh, you needn't fear a general conflagration,
my lord,

just one very big, very satisfying explosion.

So nothing's changed.

It's all ifs and buts, just as before.

Well, you'll change nothing, my lord,
by lying in bed.

What's there to get up for, more shilly—shallying?

Look at this damn thing.

It might keep up a stocking or go round a leg,

but it won't keep an army
or go round a castle's walls.

She'll pay. Give her time.

Meanwhile, I suppose she expects me
to keep up my hopes with a garter.

I hope it's stronger than my patience, that's all.

(WHISPERING) Her Majesty the Queen!

Her Majesty the Queen.

What's this? Still in bed?

Yes, well, I was...

Simier, why the devil am I still in bed?

You are melancholy, my lord.

Yes, that's right. I'm melancholy.

Well, I have brought you some soup.

—That should make you more cheerful.
—How very...


I am told French women are always
bringing their husbands little titbits.

It helps to keep them sweet.

It was very well thought of, ma'am.
He is rather sour today.

Oh, I see you still have my garter.

Oh, I keep it next to my heart

in the hope that one day...

One day,

I shall see the leg it honoured
and the other one close beside it,

—though not too close.
—And so you shall.

But, when? I'm melancholy because
the day never seems to get any nearer.

But, Francis, we can hardly
get on with the business

—if you stay in bed.
—Where better for business?

Well, that is for after the ceremony.
Until then, we use the Council Chamber.

Day after day!

I swear, I shall never leave this bed

until you swear to marry me.

I shall lie here a gross and sprawling charge
on your revenues

until I am guaranteed removal
to the royal bedchamber!

I shall be wide awake there, I promise you.

If you stay in bed, it will affect your liver.

Well, the liver is the seat of all emotions, ma'am.
His is so affected already,

that only long convalescence in the royal bed
will ever put it right.

Enough of this lewdness. Up, Francis, up.

—I am up, believe me.
—I mean rise.

I am risen. Try me.

If you have so much appetite, drink your soup.

I need better nourishment than that.

I will listen to no more wantonness.

Simier, see that he makes himself decent.
We need him in the Council Chamber.

I talk about love and all she gives me is soup!

Well, it's the first course
of the marriage breakfast. What else?

And do get up, my lord.

—You must not do these things.
—I shall do as I choose.

But visiting him in bed, taking him soup!
Do you realise what people are saying?

I do not distress myself with common gossip,
nor should you.

They're asking whether
you are a maid or a woman.

—Then they are fools.
—Am I a fool? Because you make me wonder.

Then cease wondering.

I am a maid,
as you seem determined I shall remain.

Oh, Robin, how can you doubt me?

You make even more of him this time
than you did before.

You laugh and dally with him like a...

—Like a...
—Like myself.

You know me. Am I like anyone?

—Then trust me, as I trust you.

Well, my lords, is there anything to say
before we meet the French ambassador?

I believe not, ma'am.

—He brings very good news.
—Then let us hear it.

You are welcome, my lords.

Well, Fenelon, what does the French King say?

He sends his warmest greetings to Your Majesty
and gladly agrees to all your terms.

He will support the Duke in the Netherlands
to the same extent as you do yourself.

The alliance will be offensive and defensive?

It will, my lord.

We are eager to see the Spanish expelled
once and for all.

Then I think we are in harmony at last, ma'am.

—There are no new conditions?
—FENELON: No, none.

His Majesty wants
only what he has always wanted,

the happiness of calling
the Queen of England his sister,

and the perfect alliance
of our two countries and peoples.

When will it be? Let us fix the date here and now.

One moment, Your Grace.

The French King still requires his guarantee...
the marriage.

Well, naturally, my lord.

And what guarantee does he offer us in return?

The marriage is an equal guarantee
for us both, my lord.

It is the bond of flesh
between country and country.

The French King may repudiate his brother.
What then?

My lord, this is too much!

He's never shown himself very friendly up till now.
Why are we supposed to think he's changed?

The question of any further guarantee
has never arisen.

—It has now.

Your Majesty, what do you want?

I suggest...

since your Majesty's sister, Queen Mary,
had the misfortune to lose Calais,

we've had no foothold in France,
no port of our own to come and go in at our will.

I suggest that in return for all you're giving,
you ask for Calais as your dowry.

But that's preposterous!

Do you rate the Queen so low, sir,
that you will not even surrender a small port,

which is, in any case, ours by right?

—My lord, you have spoken enough.
—I've only said what is in my heart.

You have never said it in the Council.
You have never mentioned this!

The Earl of Leicester does not believe
in speaking what is in his heart

unless it is for his own advantage.

There is no advantage to me in this.

I am only saying
what I believe to be best for England.

Oh, no, there is more in your heart, I think.
Tell us all, my lord.

—No. There is nothing more.
—You lie.

You dare to challenge me?

You minion!


It is time the whole of the noble
and gallant Earl's heart was known.

Her Majesty will be interested, I think.

What is this?

Well, the Earl of Leicester
is not what he seems, ma'am.


For instance, he is married, Your Majesty.

-Oh, yes. For the past year and more.

To your cousin, ma'am. To Lettice Knollys.

Is it not so, my lord?

Is it true?

—Your Majesty...
—Is it true?


—My Lord Burghley.
—Your Grace?

Convey the Earl of Leicester to the Tower...

—Your Majesty...
—My lord, Duke.

My lords...

I give you the next King of England.


Well, God be thanked.

Her Majesty has done her part.
Now Parliament must do theirs.

Oh, they will. They'll refuse to permit it.


-But she means it.
—I think not.

-But you saw her.
—The kiss was for Leicester, not Alençon.

I wish I thought so.

No, no, no, Burghley. It was a public gesture.

—There was only one way to take it.

Only one way for the French.

The Queen has sealed the Duke to her,
but there will have to be

many sessions of Parliament
before it goes any further.

ELIZABETH: No, I won't, you cringing cur.

Foul your own slimy kennel, not mine! Get out!


I see you dissuaded her.

He can't go to the Tower.

I rather think he'll have to.

I tried everything. Reason, flattery.

I even wept, Walsingham. I shed real tears.

There was no need to go that far.

I've heard the Queen speak roughly before,
but this time she passed all bounds.

—I don't know where she learned such language.
—Simier couldn't have chosen a worse moment.

Or a better one, from his point of view.

She had to find out sometime.
We should be grateful.

He saved us the effort of telling her ourselves.

She says we have betrayed her, and as
for Leicester, the marriage was high treason.

It was hardly that.

Ill—judged, perhaps, and guilty in its secrecy,
but not treason.

Well, you tell her yourself.
You'll probably end up in the Tower.

Someone must take the risk.

The whole negotiation for the treaty
could founder on Leicester's imprisonment.

I'm surprised the streets
aren't full of people already.

—They will be as soon as they hear.
—The Earl of Leicester is not that popular.

You don't know your fellow countrymen, Sussex.

Leicester is an Englishman
and a Protestant wrongfully jailed

so that a French Catholic
can make free with the Queen.

Alençon's life won't be worth a ha'penny
once the mob is up.

I'm afraid not. Someone must tell her, Sussex.


But I make no secret of it.
I can't think of a better place for Leicester to be.

That is why it will come
so much better from you than any of us.

It will be clear that you have
no personal reason for pleading for him,

that you act solely in the interests
of the safety of the state.

I cannot.

Hatton has tried and failed.
And Walsingham is not likely to do any better.

I would rather not.

I think you are the unanimous choice.

I have given my order and I expect to be obeyed.

I must ask you to hear me, ma'am.

I am tired of hearing people.

—I understand that, ma'am...
—I will hear no one else!

Your Majesty.

Though I say so with pride,
I have given my best years to your service.

You have never made me beg from you before.

Get up. This does no good.

—Please, let me speak.
-Get up, I said.

I do not kneel for myself.
You know me better than that.

Get up.

If I know you, you know me.

I will not pardon him because I cannot.

You can.

—If you knew what my feelings...
—I know. I do know. But...

you will let me say this because I love you

better than any duke of France.

You are the Queen

and you must let the Queen
rule you in this, not the woman.

Very well. Say what you must.

—The Earl of Leicester...
—Is a traitor!

You know I do not like him.
I find him headstrong, violent, often foolish.

Hardly anything at all in all these years
upon which we have agreed.

But he has served you in his fashion
as loyally as I.

You call it loyal to marry that...

It was not unlawful.
Marriage is an honourable estate,

or I would not have urged you to it.

Honourable to go off and do it like that in secret...

I do not defend him. I cannot.

But the marriage was properly conducted.
He has committed no legal offence.

He has offended me!

Of course he has, and grievously.

And you have the right and the power
to commit to the Tower whomsoever you please.

You may commit me, if you wish,
for advising you against it.

But the damage it would do to you,
to your own marriage, would be irreparable.

That is your advice to the Queen.

What is your advice to the woman?

—To marry, as you mean to.

No, it is a Queen who means to marry, not I!

—But, Your Majesty...
—Help me, Sussex. You have always helped me!

I am afraid.

—Afraid of what?
—Of dying.

I don't want to marry him or anyone.

But you will not die.

I hate the very idea of marriage. I can't do it.
Every day I am more and more afraid.

—You must believe me. I have my reasons.

I will not tell you what they are,
but they are good reasons, true reasons.

And now I cannot go back because of Robin,
because of the Earl!

Oh, help me to retrieve myself.

I always thought that you wanted to marry.

I know.

I had wanted and not wanted,

made your lives a misery,
but I am telling you the truth now.

I do not mean to marry ever.



God damn all women and islanders,
and may all Englishwomen

go to hell and burn there for all eternity.

—And I thought we were home.
—Home? What sort of a home have I ever had?

My mother's a murderess. Elizabeth's a coquette.

The Dutch are drunken bigots and sets!

I shall wander the face of the earth
before I ever find a home.

Well, it's better to do it
in comfort and style, my lord,

than as a beggar. They will have to buy you off.

—Like a mercenary!
—This raises your price.

You can still threaten them with Spain.
They need the alliance as much as ever.

There are plenty of other women
in the world, my lord,

prettier, too, and younger.

—You can have an heir, my lord.

-But he won't be the king of England!
-But he will be of the Netherlands, and France.

You tell me not to count the crowns
before the coronation!

You hoped for five
and I told you that was too many.

But the Netherlands is yours for the fighting for.

And your brother still shows
no signs of begetting, so...

What will my mother say?

It doesn't matter, my lord,
so long as she says it with gold.

It's not enough.

—But, Simier...
—My master has been humiliated.

Not at all.

As far as the world is concerned,
he is still betrothed to the Queen.

He is leaving England
solely to continue his campaign in Flanders

and will return in due course to marry her.

You and I and a hundred others know he will not.

—Soon everyone will know.
—I hope not.

For all our sakes, the pretence must be kept up.

The alliance, as you can see
from the support we're offering,

is a very real one.

The longer the Spanish believe
in the possibility of the marriage, the better.

That's very subtle, my lord, no doubt,
but if the alliance is to be as real as you say,

then we require much more substantial evidence
than you have so far suggested.

—How much do you want?

—And half of it in cash before the Duke sails.

That's out of the question.
There's not that amount in the treasury.

Well, how much have you?

Well, I suggest £30,000

to be paid 15 days after the Duke's departure,

and the rest, 50 days after that.

—We won't stir without something down.
—Very well.

I think we can manage 10,000...

and the rest as I've said.


Thank you, my lord.
The Duke will leave within the next three days.

—Good day.
—Good day, Simier.

—How much?
—Not bad, 60.

I thought we'd have to settle for 75.

Sooner than leave you,
I would rather we both perished.

You must not threaten a poor old woman
in her own kingdom, my lord.

That is not the language of the lover.

You mistake me.

I meant no hurt to your blessed person,

only that I would sooner be cut to pieces
than not to marry you

and so be laughed at by the whole world.

No one shall laugh at you, my lord.

Here, dry your tears.

You make me weep myself.

Before those tears are dry, I shall return.

I would give a million pounds
to have my frog swimming in the Thames

instead of those stagnant marshes
of the Netherlands.

I shall stir them up,
and before the ripples have reached the bank,

I shall be back to marry you.


and dare not show my discontent

I love and yet am forced to seem to hate.

I do, ye! dare not say I ever meant.

[seem stark mute but inward/y do prate.

[am and not.

I freeze and yet am burned

since from myself, my other self I turned

My care is like my shadow in the sun.

Follows me flying, flies when I pursue it,

stands and lies by me, doth what I have done.

This too familiar care doth make me rue it.

No means I find to rid him from my breast,

till by the end of things it be supprest.

0h, let me live with some more sweet content

or die and so forget what love ere meant

ELIZABETH: You are welcome back to court,
my lord.

You see your policy has triumphed.

What advice have you for me now?

I would not dare to offer you advice, my Queen.

Why not?

The philosophers teach us
that beauty is wisdom and so...

you are the wisest woman in the world.

You must not speak to me like that. It is not fit.

You are a married man and I...

We will deal more honestly with each other
from now on.

My Lord Sussex.


I am tired.

I will lean on your arm if I may.