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Title: The Boke of Noblesse

Author: Unknown

Editor: John Gough Nichols

Release Date: October 1, 2010 [EBook #33953]

Language: English

Character set encoding: ISO-8859-1


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Transcriber's note: A few typographical errors have been corrected. They appear in the text like this, and the explanation will appear when the mouse pointer is moved over the marked passage.




IN 1475


B Y J O H N G O U G H N I C H O L S , F. S. A.

Printers Mark


Published by LENOX HILL Pub. & Dist. Co. (Burt Franklin)

235 East 44th St., New York, N.Y. 10017

Reprinted: 1972

Printed in the U.S.A.

Burt Franklin: Research and Source Works Series

Selected Studies in History, Economics, & Social Science:

n.s. 17 (b) Medieval, Renaissance & Reformation Studies

Reprinted from the original edition in the University of

Minnesota Library.

Library of Congress Cataloging in Publication Data

The Boke of noblesse.

Reprint of the 1860 ed. printed for the Roxburghe Club.

1. Chivalry—History. 2. Hundred Years' War, 1339-1453. 3. Great

Britain—History—Edward IV, 1461-1483. I. Roxburghe Club, London.

CR4515.B64 1972 394'.7'09 73-80201

ISBN 0-8337-2524-6

The Roxburghe Club.











































The Roxburghe Club





                    BY THEIR OBEDIENT SERVANT,


June 23, 1860.



The Book of Noblesse, which is now for the first time printed, was addressed to King Edward the Fourth for a political purpose, on a great and important occasion. He was in the midst of his second reign, living in high prosperity. He had subdued his domestic enemies. His Lancastrian rivals were no longer in existence, and the potent King-maker had fought his last field. Edward was the father of two sons; and had no immediate reason to dread either of his younger brothers, however unkind and treacherous we now know them to have been. He was the undisputed King of England, and, like his predecessors, the titular King of France. His brother-in-law the duke of Burgundy, who had befriended him in his exile in 1470, was continually urging, for his own ambitious views, that the English should renew their ancient enterprises in France; and Edward, notwithstanding his natural indolence, was at last prepared to carry his arms into that country. The project was popular with all those who were burning for military fame, indignant at the decay of the English name upon the continent, or desirous to improve their fortunes by the acquisitions of conquest. The Book of Noblesse was written to excite and inflame such sentiments and expectations.

Its unknown author was connected with those who had formerly profited by the occupation of the English provinces in France, and particularly with the celebrated sir John Fastolfe, knight of the Garter, whom the writer in several places mentions as "myne autor."

Sir John Fastolfe had survived the losses of his countrymen in France, and died at an advanced age in the year 1460. It seems not at all improbable that the substance of this book was written during his life-time, and that it was merely revised and augmented on the eve of Edward the Fourth's invasion of France. All the historical events which are mentioned in it date at least some five-and-twenty years before that expedition.

The author commences his composition by an acknowledgment, how necessary it is in the beginning of every good work, to implore the grace of God: and then {ii}introduces a definition of true nobility or Noblesse, in the words of "Kayus' son," as he designates the younger Pliny.

He next states that his work was suggested by the disgrace which the realm had sustained from the grievous loss of the kingdom of France, the duchies of Normandy, Gascony, and Guienne, and the counties of Maine and Ponthieu; which had been recovered by the French party, headed by Charles the Seventh, in the course of fifteen months, and chiefly during the year 1450. To inspire a just indignation of such a reverse, he recalls all the ancestral glories of the English nation, from their first original in the ancient blood of Troy, and through all the triumphs of the Saxons, Danes, Normans, and Angevyns. Of the Romans in England he says nothing, though in his subsequent pages he draws much from Roman history.

The next chapter sets forth how every man of worship in arms should resemble the lion in disposition, being eager, fierce, and courageous. In illustration of this it may be remarked, that Froissart, when describing the battle of Poictiers, says of the Black Prince, "The Prince of Wales, who was as courageous and cruel as a lion, took great pleasure this day in fighting and chasing his enemies." So our first Richard is still popularly known by his martial epithet of Cœur de Lyon: and that the lion was generally considered the fit emblem of knightly valour is testified by its general adoption on the heraldic shields of the highest ranks of feudal chivalry. The royal house of England displayed three lions, and the king of beasts was supposed to be peculiarly symbolic of their race—

Your brother Kings and monarchs of the earth

Do all expect that you should rouse yourself

As did the former Lions of your Blood.

Shakspere's Henry V. Act I. scene 1.

In the following chapter the author proceeds to describe "how the French party began first to offend, and break the truce." This truce had been concluded at Tours on the 28th of May 1444. The French are stated to have transgressed it first by capturing certain English merchant-men on the sea; and next by taking as prisoners various persons who bore allegiance to the English king. Of such are enumerated sir Giles son of the duke of Bretagne[1]; sir Simon Morhier, the {iii}provost of Paris, taken at Dieppe[2]; one Mansel an esquire, taken on the road between Rouen and Dieppe, in January 1448-9[3]; and the lord Fauconberg, taken at Pont de l'Arche on the 15th May 1449.[4] The writer is careful to state that these acts of aggression on the part of the French, or some of them, were committed "before the taking of Fugiers," for it was by that action that the English party had really brought themselves into difficulty.[5]

There is next discussed (p. 6) "a question of great charge and weight, whether it be lawful to make war upon Christian blood." This is determined upon the authority of a book entitled The Tree of Batailes, a work which had evidently already acquired considerable popularity whilst still circulated in manuscript only, {iv}and which so far retained its reputation when books began to be multiplied by the printing-press as to be reproduced on several occasions. Our author frequently recurs to it, but his references do not agree with the book as it now remains; and it is remarkable that he attributes it, not to Honoré Bonnet its real author,[6] but to one dame Christine, whom he describes (see his note in p. 54) as an inmate of the house of religious ladies at Passy near Paris. It would seem, therefore, that he made use of a somewhat different book, though probably founded on the celebrated work of Honoré Bonnet.

The fact of wars sometimes originating from motives of mere rivalry or revenge prompts the writer or commentator (whose insertions I have distinguished as proceeding from a "second hand,") to introduce some remarks on the inveterate and mortal enmity that had prevailed between the houses of Burgundy and Orleans, which led to so many acts of cruelty and violence at the beginning of the fifteenth century.

King Edward is next reminded "how saint Louis exhorted and counselled his son to move no war against Christian people;" but, notwithstanding that blessed king's counsel,[7] it is declared on the other hand that "it is notarily and openly {v}known through all Christian realms that our adverse party hath moved and excited war and battles both by land and sea against this noble realm without any justice or title, and without ways of peace showed; and consequently it might be without note of tiranny for the king of England to defend (or drive away) those assailants upon his true title, and to put himself in devoir to conquer his rightful inheritance."

The writer then bursts forth into a passionate exhortation to the English nation, to remember their ancient prowess, the annals of which he proceeds to set forth in several subsequent chapters. He enumerates the examples of king Arthur, of Brennus, Edmond Ironside, William the Conqueror, Henry the First, his brother Robert elect king of Jerusalem, Fulke earl of Anjou, Richard Cœur de Lyon, Philip Dieudonné of France, Edward the First, and Richard earl of Cornwall and emperor of Almaine. He rehearses how Edward the Third had the victory at the battle of Scluse, gat Caen by assault, won the field at the great and dolorous battle of Cressy, captured David king of Scots and Charles duke of Bretany, and took Calais by siege; how Edward prince of Wales made John king of France prisoner at Poictiers; and how the battle of Nazar was fought in Spain.

In the following chapter it is related how king Henry the Fifth conquered Normandy; under which head a particular account is given of the defence of Harfleur against the power of France. Here it is that the name of sir John Fastolfe is first introduced as an authority, in respect to a circumstance of that siege, which is, that the watchmen availed themselves of the assistance of mastiffs—"and as for wache and ward yn the wynter nyghtys I herd the seyd ser Johan Fastolfe sey that every man kepyng the scout wache had a masty hound at a lyes (or leash), to barke and warne yff ony adverse partye were commyng to the dykes or to aproche the towne for to scale yt."

The chapter concludes with a mention of the battle of Agincourt and the marriage of king Henry to the French king's daughter.

The following chapters (pp. 17 et seq.) contain how in the time of John duke of Bedford, who was for thirteen years Regent of France, the victory of Cravant was obtained by his lieutenant the earl of Salisbury; how the duke in his own person won the battle of Verneuil in Perche; how that the greater part of the county of Mayne, and the city of Mauns, with many other castles, were brought {vi}into subjection; and how that Henry the Sixth, by the might of great lords, was crowned King in Paris; after which the writer bursts forth into another exhortation, or "courageous recomforting" of the "valiauntnes of Englishemen."

The author now flies off (p. 20) to more remote examples, to the noblesse of that vaillant knight Hector of Troy, to the deeds in arms of Agamemnon the puissaunt king of Greece, and to those of Ulysses and Hercules.

He recites, from the book of Vegetius on Military Tactics,[8] how a conqueror should especially practise three things,—the first, a scientific prudence or caution: the second, exercitacion and usage in deeds of arms: and the third, a diligent regard to the welfare of his people.

He next argues how men of noblesse ought to leave sensualities and delights.

In the following chapters (p. 22 et seq.), he sets forth the King's title to the duchy of Normandy, to the inheritance of Anjou, Maine, and Touraine, and to the duchies of Gascoigne and Guienne.

The "historier" proceedeth (p. 25) in his matter of exhortation, strengthening his arguments by the heterogeneous authority of master Alanus de Auriga, of "the clerke of eloquence Tullius," of Caton, the famous poet Ovid, and Walter Malexander. The work of the first of these authors, Alain Chartier, seems to have been at once the source from which many of our author's materials were derived, and also to have furnished the key-note upon which he endeavoured to pitch his {vii}appeals to the patriotism and prowess of his countrymen. Alain Chartier[9] had been secretary to king Charles the Seventh, and wrote his Quadrilogue[10] in the year 1422, in defence of the native party in France, and in opposition to the English usurpation. Our author imitates his rhapsodical eloquence, and borrows some of his verbal artillery and munitions of war, whilst he turns them against the party of their original deviser.

In the subsequent pages several anecdotes are derived from Alain Chartier[11]; and further advice is drawn from the Arbre des Batailles (pp. 27, 30), and from the treatise of Vegetius (p. 29).

It is related (p. 33) how king John lost the duchy of Normandy for lack of finaunce to wage his soldiers; and next follows (p. 34) a long and important chapter recounting the various truces made between the kings of England and France, and showing how frequently they had been broken by the French party, to the decay of the English power, except when revived by the victories of Edward the Third and Henry the Fifth. This part of the discussion is concluded with a representation (p. 41) of the lamentable condition of the French subjects of the English crown, when put out of their lands and tenements. "Heh allas! (thei did crie,) and woo be the tyme (they saide) that ever we shulde put affiaunce and trust to the Frenshe partie or theire allies in any trewes-keping, considering so many-folde tymes we have ben deceived and myschevid thoroughe suche dissimuled trewes!"

Yet, notwithstanding all these discouragements, a confident trust is expressed that the inheritance of France will at length be brought to its true and right estate.

The writer then proposes (p. 41) a question to be resolved by divines, How be {viii}it that at some times God suffereth the party that hath a true title and right to be overcome, yet for all that a man should not be discouraged from pursuing his right. He mentions the last unfortunate overthrow sustained at Formigny[12] in 1450, and the consequent loss of Guienne and Bordeaux.

After which follows (p. 43) "another exhortation of the historier," addressed to the "highe and myghtifulle prince, king of Englonde and of France, and alle ye other noble princes and other puissaunt lordes and nobles of divers astates olde or yong."

A brief recommendation ensues of the deeds in arms of that mightiful prince of renommee Henry the Fifth and the three full mighty and noble princes his brethren; where, in the commendation of Humphrey duke of Gloucester, the second hand has inserted a note of his "bokys yovyng, as yt ys seyd to the value of Ml marks, of the vij sciences, of dyvinite, as of law spirituall and cyvyle, to the universite of Oxford."

Allusion is made (p. 46) to the order of the Garter, "founded (as yt ys seyd) in token of worship that he being in bataile, what fortune fille, shulde not voide the feeld, but abide the fortune that God lust sende;" of which fellowship sir John Chandos, seneschal of Poictou, had been a right noble exemplar. The historical reminiscences of the author then again lead him on to the disastrous period during which the continental possessions of England had been lost, "within the space of one year and fourteen (fifteen) weeks, that is to wete, from the xv. day of May in the year 1449 unto the xv. day of August in the year 1450, that every castle, fortress, and town defensable of the said duchies were delivered up by force or composition to the adverse party."

After a break (p. 50), in consequence of the loss of a leaf of the Manuscript, we find ourselves in the midst of a discussion of the merits of astrology. The author addresses himself to combat the prevalent confidence in prophecies and in the influence of the stars: "which judgments (he avers) be not necessarily true;" but merely contingent or likely, and, he adds, "as likely not to be as to be." For if, he puts the case, "a constellation or a prophecy signified that such a year or within {ix}such a time there should fall war, pestilence, or dearth of vitaile to a country or region, or privation of a country, it is said but dispositively, and not of necessity or certainty; for then it should follow that the prophecies, constellations, and influence of the stars were masters over God's power, and that would soune to a heresy, or else to a great error." After this pious determination upon a question that at that period presented great difficulties, the author adds, that he believed God to have bestowed that sovereignty upon man's soul, that, having a clean soul, he might even turn the judgment of constellations or prophecies to the contrary disposition: to which effect he quotes the bold assertion of the famous astrologian Ptolemy,

Quod homo sapiens dominatur astris.

With these sentiments, rising superior to the general prejudices of the age, our author proceeds confidently to censure the moral causes of the recent calamities, which in his judgment had ensued "for lak of prudence and politique governaunce in dew time provided," and from "havyng no consideracion to the comon wele, but rather to magnifie and enriche one silfe by singler covetise, using to take gret rewardis and suffering extorcions over the pore peple." On this subject he subsequently speaks still more plainly.

This leads him to reflect upon the fate of many realms and countries that had been ruined by sin and misgovernance: as the old Bretons were, when driven out of England by the Saxons into Cornwall and Wales. "And where (he exclaims[13]) is Nynnyve, the gret cite of thre daies? and Babilon, the gret toure, inhabited now withe wilde bestis? the citeis of Troy and Thebes, ij. grete magnified citeis? also Athenes, that was the welle of connyng and of wisdom?" Carthage, "the victorioux cite of gret renomme," had been burnt to ashes by the Romans. Rome {x}herself had for the greater part been overthrown; and Jerusalem had shared the like fate.

In the succeeding portions of his work the compiler takes much of his matter from Roman history: which he derives from the decades of Titus Livius, either directly, or through the medium of the "Tree of Batailes." Tullius and Cato are also repeatedly cited.

It is unnecessary to notice here all the historical anecdotes thus introduced, as they will at once be seen on turning over the pages; but attention should be directed to one of the most remarkable passages in the book, in which the writer quotes the sentiments of "myne autor," sir John Fastolfe:—

"I hafe herd myne autor Fastolfe sey, when he had yong knyghtys and nobles at his solasse (i.e. tuition), how that there be twey maner condicions of manly men, and one ys a manlye man called, another ys a hardye man; but he sayd the manlye man ys more to be comended, more then the hardy man; for the hardy man that sodenly, bethout discrecion of gode avysement, avauncyth hym yn the felde to be hadde couragiouse, and wyth grete aventur he scapyth, voidith the felde allone, but he levyth his felyshyp detrussed (or disordered). And the manly man, hys policie ys that (if) he avaunce hym and hys felyshyp at skirmish or sodeyn racountre, he wulle so discretely avaunce hym that he wulle entend [i.e. be sure] to hafe the over-hand of hys adversarye, and safe hymself and hys felyshyp."

It was thus that the experienced captain sir John Fastolfe distinguished between the rashly daring and those who bravely embarked on some feasible and well conceived exploit. It is evident that the term "hardy" was then sometimes understood in the sense we now call fool-hardy.[14] The author himself uses the word "fool-hardiesse" in p. 63.


At p. 68 will be found another anecdote of sir John Fastolfe. It shows that the writer had access to those books of accompt which sir John had kept when a captain in France. "I fynde (he says) by his bookes of hys purveonds how yn every castell, forteresse, and cyte or towne, he wolde hafe grete providence of vitaille, of cornys, of larde, and beoffes, of stok physsh and saltfysh owt of England commyng by shyppes." It was because of his good management in this respect that the regent and lords of the council intrusted so many castles to his custody that he yearly had under his command three hundred spears (or mounted men-at-arms) with their attendants. Also in like manner he purveyed yearly for his soldiers a livery of red and white; and equipments sufficient for any naked man that was able to do the king and regent service. The good result of this provision was manifested on a memorable occasion, when the duke of Exeter was captain of the city of Paris, and Fastolfe captain of the bastille of St. Anthoine. It happened, in consequence of the arrest of the lord de Lisle Adam,[15] a favourite with the commons of the city, that they suddenly took arms, and rebelled against the duke of Exeter, who found it necessary to repair to the bastille for his defence. {xii}At his coming the first question he asked of Fastolfe was how far he was furnished with corn, with wheat, beans, peasen, and aveyn for horse-meat, and with other vitail. Fastolfe replied, With sufficient for a half-year or more: which gave the prince great "comfort," or re-assurance. So he made ready his ordnance, and discharged the great guns amongst the rebels, with mighty shot of arrows: by which means, and because the French king and queen, who were in the city, also held against the rebels, the burgesses were in a short time constrained to submit to the mercy of the duke of Exeter.[16]

At p. 69 occurs a curious chapter in the praise of agriculture, or "labourage of the londe" as it is there termed, illustrated by a description of the gardens and herbers of king Cyrus.

But the most important portion of the whole work, in an historical point of view, is the chapter commencing at p. 71, intended to inforce the wisdom and necessity of making just pay to soldiers, for eschewing of great inconveniences that may otherwise insue. It is here admitted that in this respect there had been more neglect in the English possessions in France than was elsewhere known[17]: {xiii}that in consequence the people had suffered great oppression from the soldiers taking their vitail without payment, and that such abuses had continued unchecked for ten or twelve years previously to the country being lost. Our author advises that the chieftains and captains should be duly paid their wages, either monthly, as had been usual during the time of the regent Bedford, or quarterly, and that without any reward of courtesy, bribe, defalcation, or abridgment, or any undue assignation; and that such payments be made content without delay, or long and great pursuit. It appears from the writer's statements, that the royal officers, deputies, and commissioners had not only been guilty of the practices thus denounced, but that those officers themselves had been needlessly numerous, living as they did upon bribery and extortion, and neglecting the exercise of arms necessary for the defence and protection of the territory. Oftentimes they had wasted of the subjects'[18] livelode more than was necessary, and oftentimes had suffered them to be menaced and beaten, and mischieved their beasts with their weapons, so that they were nigh out of their wits for sorrow, and thus enforced "for duresse" to forsake the title and laws of their English sovereign. Moreover, they had been so often grievously surcharged with paying of tasques, tails (or tolls), subsidies, and impositions, besides their rents paid either to the crown or their landlords, and many of them dwelling upon the marches having also patised (or compounded?) to the adverse party in order to dwell in rest, that these innumerable charges and divers torments had effected their uttermost undoing. The author cannot quit these reflections without this passionate appeal to the Almighty: "Oh God! which art most mercifulle and highest juge, soverein and just, how maist thou long suffre this (misery) regnyng without the stroke of vengeaunce and ponisshement commyng upon the depryvyng or yelding up of that Dukedom?"

The next chapter (p. 74) appears to intimate that the writer personally sympathised in the degradation of the clergy. "Moreover, (he exclaims,) in way of gret pitee, and in the worship of God, suffre ye not the prelates of the Chirche of that lande, as archebisshoppis, bisshoppis, abbatis, priours, denes, archedenes, and their ministrours, to be oppressid, revaled, ne vileyned, as in your predecessour's {xiv}daies they have been accepted in fulle litelle reverence or obedience;" having as he alleges been privily coerced to give to the rulers, governors, and masters of the marches and countries great fees, wages, and rewards, for permission to live at rest upon their livelodes. And oftentimes they were visited by strangers of great estate, both spiritual and temporal, and particularly by those intrusted with the administration of the laws, besides other needless people that wasted and surcharged them, an exaction beyond the intent of their foundation, which was merely to maintain their appointed numbers, praying for their founders, and to feed the poor and needy in case of necessity.

The following chapter (p. 76) is a remarkable one in respect to ancient chivalric usages. It sets forth "How lordis sonnes and noble men of birthe, for the defense of her londe, shulde exercise hem in armes lernyng." It is urged that "the sonnes of princes, of lordis, and for the most part of alle tho that ben comen and descendid of noble bloode, as of auncien knightis, esquiers, and other auncient gentille men, while they ben of grene age, (should be) drawen forthe, norisshed, and excercised in disciplines, doctrine, and usage of scole of armes, as using justis, to renne with speer, handle withe ax, sworde, dagger, and alle othir defensible wepyn, to wrestling, to skeping, leping, and rennyng, to make hem hardie, deliver, and wele brethed;" ... "and not to be unkonnyng, abashed, ne astonied for to take entrepresis, to answer or deliver a gentilman that desires in worship to doo armes in liestis, (either) to the utteraunce or to certein pointis, or in a quarelle rightful to fight," or in time of war to defend their sovereign and his realm. Such was the ancient custom of the kings both of France and of England: as especially of king Edward the Third, and of Henry duke of Lancaster. That chivalrous knight, who was accounted "a chief auctour and foundour in law of armes," had (as the writer was told by sir John Fastolfe) sent to him from princes and lords of strange regions, as out of Spain, Aragon, Portugal, Navarre, and France, their children, young knights, "to be doctrined, lerned, and brought up in his noble court, in scole of armes, and for to see noblesse, curtesie, and worship."

This useful custom had been maintained by other noble princes and lords of great birth; but now of late days, (continues our author,) the greater pity is! many that be descended of noble blood and born to arms, as the sons of knights and esquires and of other gentle blood, set themselves to "singuler practik" and to "straunge facultees," as to learn "the practique of law or custom of lands, or of civil matier," and so waste greatly their time in such needless business, as to undertake the holding of manorial courts, to keep and bear out a proud {xv}countenance at the holding of sessions and shire-motes,[19] and "there to embrace[20] and rule among youre pore and symple comyns of bestialle contenaunce that lust to lyve in rest." And it is added, that whoever could put himself forward as a ruler in such matters, was, "as the worlde goithe now," more esteemed among all estates than he who had expended thirty or forty years of his life in great jeopardies in the conquests and wars of his sovereign. The author pursues the argument at greater length, as the reader will find, and expresses his decided opinion that the high-born personages in question should rather learn to be good men of arms, chieftains, or captains in the field, than to be a captain or ruler at a sessions or shire-day; leaving such matters to the king's justices and officers,[21] and that "suche singuler practik shulde not be accustumed and occupied undewly with suche men that be come of noble birthe,"—except (it is added on second thoughts) he be the younger brother, having not whereof to live honestly.

The following chapter (p. 78) discusses "How officers of the law shulde be {xvi}chosen, welle disposid and temperate men, vertuous in condicion, and they to be protectid by lordis and noble men of birthe." There is nothing however in this chapter so remarkable as in that which has preceded.

The author next shows (p. 79) "How over gret cost and pomp in clothing shulde be eschewed;" in which respect he asserts that in France "alle costius arraiementis of clothing, garmentis, and bobauncees, and the usaige of pellure and furres they have expresselie put away:" whilst in England the like "costues arraymentis and disguising of clothing, of so many divers facion," had caused impoverishing of the land, and excited great pride, envy, and wrath amongst the people.

Whether this was truly a national grievance may be doubted. It is, however, more probable that the "pore comyns" of England had really suffered, as set forth in the succeeding chapter (p. 80), "gret hurt and inconvenientis because the creditours have not been duelie paid of here lonys and prestis made to high sovereins." This, it is stated, had been oftentimes the case in the reign of Henry the Sixth. They had advanced loans, "prests of vitails and other merchandise," of which the payment was so long delayed that great part of their property was previously expended, and they were sometimes fain to defalke and release part of their dues, in order to recover the rest. As an alternative for this inconvenience the writer recommends a course that would scarcely have proved more efficacious. "Let your riche tresours (he advises the king) be spradde and put abrode, both juellis (and) vesselle of golde and silver, among youre true subgettis, and inespecialle to the helpe and avauncement of youre conquest, and to the relief of your indigent and nedie peple, and inespecialle to tho that have lost theire londis, livelode, and goode in the werres, so that the saide tresoure may be put forthe, and late it be set in money to the remedie and socoure of this gret importunyte and necessite, and to the defens of youre roiaume from your adversaries."

In another chapter (p. 81), having recommended the king, "after the blessed counceile of Saint Louis," to cherish and favour the good cities and towns, the author pursues the former argument of raising supplies, urgently exhorting all classes to strain their utmost for that object. "Youre saide citesins and burgeis and good comyns if they be tendred shalbe of power and of good courage, and wille withe here bodies and goodes largelie depart to be yoven for to resist the adversaries." Those who had not able bodies nor usage in arms, were yet to come forth with a good courage, spiritual men as well as temporal, and, as true Englishmen should do, "every man put forthe of his goodes after that his power is."

With this strain the Epistle terminates, its last chapter (p. 83) being an illustration of the same argument from the Punica bella of Titus Livius, consisting of {xvii}"A noble history of the largesse of Romaynys, how amplye they departed ther godes yn a tym of urgent necessite, to make an armee yn to the contree of Auffrique."

These final passages of the book, which so urgently recommend a voluntary contribution in aid of the intended war, were certainly written in the year 1475, with which date the whole composition concludes: for it is recorded by the historians of the day that it was on this occasion that king Edward the Fourth, after he had already raised all the supplies he could obtain by the ordinary methods of taxation, adopted the new device of a contribution nominally voluntary and its amount optional, and therefore termed a Benevolence,[22] but which eventually, when repeated, was regarded with peculiar repugnance and discontent.


After this review of the contents of the Work, we will proceed to notice the circumstances of the occasion for which it was professedly composed.

The English invasion of France in the year 1475 originated in the events of 1470 and 1471. The temporary deposition of Edward the Fourth from his throne had been abetted by the aid which the King-making earl of Warwick derived from that forger of all mischief Louis the Eleventh of France. At that time Edward took refuge with his brother-in-law the duke of Burgundy, a man as ambitious of aggrandisement as king Louis, but whose disposition instigated him to pursue it by the more ordinary path of martial enterprise. His enmity to the king of France was bitter and inveterate; and it doubtless formed the topic of much of his discourse with the exiled English monarch. Edward, on his part, vowed an ample revenge when the forces of England should be again at his command: and the result was a mutual understanding between these princes to prosecute their common quarrel at the earliest opportunity.

Having this object in view, Edward summoned a parliament[23] in the autumn {xviii}of 1472, in order to obtain the requisite supplies; and on the last day of November an act was passed whereby the commons granted to the king a force of 13,000 archers (the like number which had been granted to his predecessor in the 31st year of his reign[24]), assigning as their motives for so doing, that "for the wele and suerte of this your reame inward, and the defence of the same outeward, to assiste youre roiall astate, ye verraily entendyng, in youre princely and knightly corage, with all diligence to youre highnes possible, all your bodely ease leyde apart, to resiste the seid confedered malice of youre and oure seide ennemyes, in setting outeward a myghty armee, able by the helpe of God to resiste the seid ennemyes." The archers were to abide in the king's service by the space of a year, each receiving the pay of six pence a day; and the commons granted for their support a disme, or tenth part of the income from lands, tenements, and possessions of every temporal person, not being a lord of parliament: but, if the said army held not before the feast of Saint Michael in 1473, the grant was to be void, and the money repaid. [25]

The lords spiritual and temporal made a similar grant, on the consideration "that the kyng oure soverayn lord is disposed by the grace of God in his owne persone to passe forth of this his seid reame with an armee roiall, for the saufegarde of the same reame, and the subduyng of the auncien ennemyes of hym and of his seid reame."[26] In the next session, on the 8th April 1473, the commons granted to the king a fifteenth and a tenth, because, among other causes, "that ye verraily entend, as we understond, to aredye youre self, by all measnes to you possible, in youre moost noble persone to goo, departe, and passe with an arme roiall to the parties outward, to subdue by the myght of God youre and oure auncien enemyes, to the weele of you and prosperite of this youre reame."[27]

Notwithstanding these earnest intentions and costly preparations, the season of 1473 wore away without any embarkation for France; and, at the close of the session on the 1st of February 1473-4, the chancellor, by the king's command, informed the commons that the parliament was prorogued to the 9th of May following,[28] "because in the matter of foreign war the king was not certainly {xix}informed of the disposition of his brother of Burgundy, and on that account he had lately sent his ambassadors to his said brother."

The treaty with Burgundy was concluded in July 1474. The principal documents[29] respecting it bear date on the 25th of that month, on which day they were ratified both by king Edward and duke Charles. The former undertook to land in Normandy, or in other parts of France, with more than ten thousand men, before the 1st of July following (i.e. 1475); and the latter agreed to support the king's part in person and with his forces, in order to accomplish the recovery of the duchies of Normandy and Aquitaine, and the kingdom and crown of France, from Louis, then unjustly occupying them. The king engaged not to treat with Louis, without the consent of the duke of Burgundy; and the duke in like manner covenanted not to treat with him without the consent of king Edward. Henceforth Louis was to be deemed and proclaimed their common enemy.

By further articles, dated on the next following day, the contracting parties agreed that, when either of them waged war, they should have liberty to demand from the other aid to the amount of six thousand armed men; which were to be paid at the expense of the party requiring them, unless the war were in his own defence, in which case he was to pay only three fifths, and the other party two fifths of the soldiers' wages. By a further treaty, also dated on the 26th July 1474, king Edward ceded to the duke of Burgundy the duchy of Barr, the counties of Champagne, Nevers, Rethelle, Eu, and Guise, the barony of Douzi, the cities of Tournay and Lingon, with their dependencies, the castle and town of Picquigny, all the towns and lordships on either side the Somme before pledged to him, and further all the lands and lordships then possessed by Louis de {xx}Luxemburgh count of St. Paul: retaining no feudal sovereignty over the same, but conceding that the duke and his successors should in future be esteemed as the sovereign princes thereof. It was further agreed that Edward should be crowned and anointed king of France at Rheims, notwithstanding that the county of Champagne was ceded to the duke of Burgundy.

From this time the whole military population of England made constant and earnest preparation for hostilities. They were retained by indenture to serve the king for a whole year in his duchy of Normandy and realm of France, each receiving the wages assigned to their respective ranks. These were,—to a Duke xiij s. iiij d. by the day, to an Earl vj s. viij d., to a Baron or Banneret iiij s., to a Knight ij s., to a Man at Arms xij d. by the day and vj d. more as of reward, and to an Archer vj d. by the day.[30]


In December proclamations were made throughout England for all bowyers and fletchers to pursue their labours with the utmost haste and diligence, the latter to make only "shefe arrowes;" and purveyors were sent into several circuits to superintend the delivery of their supplies.[31] Other commissions were issued for impressing into the king's service carpenters, wheelers, cartwrights, masons, smiths, plumbers, and other artificers; and also for taking all ships of the burden of sixteen tons and upwards, for the transport of the army.[32]

For all these expenses the large sums already voted by the lords and commons in parliament, together with those granted by the clergy in their convocation, were not sufficient. It was then that recourse was had to the collections called Benevolences, to which allusion has been already made, from their being so strongly advocated by the author of The Boke of Noblesse. The process by which they were first brought into operation is thus described by Fabyan the London chronicler:

"He sent for the mayer of London and his brethren the aldermen, and them severally examined and exorted to ayde and assyst hym towarde the sayd great journaye; of whiche the maier (Robert Drope, draper,) for his parte granted xxxli. and the aldermen some xx marke, and the leest xli. And that done he sent for all the thryfty commoners within the sayd cytie, and theym exortyd in lyke maner, whiche for the more partye granted to hym the wages of halfe a man for a yere, the whiche amounted to iiijli. xjs. iijd. And after that he rode about the more part of the lande, and used the people in suche fayre maner, that he reysed therby notable summes of money, the whiche way of the levyinge of this money was after named a Benevolence."

"But here (adds the chronicler Hall on this subject) I wil not let passe a prety conceyt that happened in this gathering, in the which you shall not onely note the humilitie of a kyng, but more the fantasie of a woman. Kyng Edward had called before hym a wydow, muche aboundynge in substance, and no lesse grown in yeres, of whome he merely demaunded what she gladly woulde geve him towarde his greate charges. By my treuth, (quod she,) for thy lovely countenance thou shalt have even xxl. The kyng, lokyng scarce for the halfe of that summe, {xxii}thanked her, and lovingly kyst her. Whether the flavor of his brethe did so comfort her stommacke, or she estemed the kysse of a kynge so precious a juell, she swore incontinently that he should have xxl. more, which she with the same will payed that she offered it.

"The kynge, willing to shew that this benefite was to hym much acceptable, and not worthy to be put in oblivion, called this graunt of money a Benevolence, notwithstanding that many with grudge and malevolence gave great summes toward that new-founde Benevolence. But the using of such gentill fashions toward them, wyth frendly prayer of their assistance in his necessitie, so tempted theim, that they could not otherwise do, but frankely and frely yelde and geve hym a reasonable reward."

In the spring of 1475 the season for the campaign had at length arrived; and on the 1st of May proclamation was made that all "the lordes and capitaignes" who were retained for the army should muster at Portsdown in the county of Southampton on the 26th of the same month.[33] John lord Dynham, by letters patent dated the 15th of April, was appointed to conduct the army across the sea.[34]

The transport of the army to Calais occupied the greater part of the month of June. The king, having left London on the 4th of that month,[35] proceeded towards the coast through the county of Kent. On the 6th and 10th he was at Canterbury, and on the 20th at Sandwich, where on that day he made his will,[36] and executed the instruments by which he constituted his son Edward prince of Wales to be Custos and Lieutenant of the kingdom during his absence.[37] There was still some further delay, and the king appears not to have crossed the channel until the 4th of July,[38] just one month after his quitting London.

The king was accompanied in this expedition by his two brothers, the dukes of Clarence and Gloucester, by the dukes of Suffolk and Norfolk, the marquess of {xxiii}Dorset, the earls of Northumberland, Rivers, and Pembroke, the earl of Ormond, the earl of Douglas, and lord Boyd, the barons Grey of Ruthyn, Scrope, Grey of Codnor, Stanley, Hastings, Ferrers, Howard, Lisle, and probably others[39]; together with a long train of knights, among whom were sir Thomas Mountgomery and sir Ralph Hastings bannerets and knights for the king's body, sir John Astley a banneret, sir John Parre a knight for the body, sir William Parre, and sir Richard Tunstall.

When the king had landed at Calais his sister the duchess of Burgundy came thither to welcome him, on the 6th of July. She was followed by the duke her husband on the 14th; at which time the duchess was at St. Omer's with her brothers the dukes of Clarence and Gloucester. On the 18th the sovereigns of England and Burgundy went together to the castle of Guisnes, where the duke was entertained at king Edward's expense, as he had been at Calais.[40]


Meanwhile, (relates Molinet,) "the army spread itself through the neighbouring countries, numbering about twenty-two thousand men in the king's pay, of which the archers were badly mounted, and little used to go on horseback. The English were then inflated with high expectations, and thought that France might well tremble before them. They brought a new engine of artillery in the form of a carriage, which required, to put it in action, more than fifty horses, and it was calculated to make at every stroke breaches both deep and wide. Many of the English, who were natives of the duchies of Guienne and Normandy, brought with them the deeds of purchase, and registrations duly sealed, of the inheritances and rents that they used to possess in those duchies before their expulsion, looking forward to recover their title and enjoyment thereof.

"The king (continues the same chronicler) drew his army towards Fauquenbergh, where he raised the richest tent ever seen; then he moved on Rousseauville, and stayed for two nights in the place where king Henry, the father of his predecessor, had obtained a glorious victory over the French, in the year 1415—i.e. at Agincourt; from thence he marched to Blangy, and from Blangy towards Peronne. Supplies came to his army from the countries and lordships of the duke of Burgundy. The English repeatedly passed and repassed the river Somme; and the duke of Burgundy, in person departing from Valenciennes, (where he had been honourably received, and where many pageants had been exhibited and performed before him in compliment to the king of England and himself,) came to view the army of the English, whom he caused to march and countermarch at his orders, to show his desire to lead them. The duke and king Edward, who then kept the field, held a conference for the space of three hours. A dove was observed to remain on the king's tent for a whole day and a half[41]: and after its departure there {xxv}followed a terrible thunder-storm, which did great damage to the army, by the hail stones which fell, as large as walnuts. From that day forward the English were in trouble enough, and began to murmur, saying that the king had kept badly the promises that had been made to them. The time passed away without anything being accomplished. The duke of Burgundy parted from them, and went to Lorraine, where he had left part of his forces, to conquer the duchy and county of Vaudemont."

Our own historians have not discoursed at any length of the campaign made in France on this occasion. It has not offered to them the attractions of a Creci, a Poictiers, or an Agincourt; nor even presented any minor achievement that might have inspired their eloquence or stimulated their researches. Its laurels in fact withered under the wily diplomacy of Louis the Eleventh; and, besides the chapter of Molinet from which the preceding passages have been taken, it is in the pages of that monarch's vivid biographer, Philippe de Commines, that we are most fully informed of its transactions. Its results were entirely in correspondence with the personal characteristics of the three sovereigns concerned. The obstinate self-will of Charles the Rash, the luxurious indolence of king Edward, and the timid but crafty time-serving of Louis the Eleventh, all contributed to work out their natural effects.

When the English began to land in France, the duke of Burgundy, already engaged in warfare with the German princes, was besieging the town of Neuss, upon the Rhine; and, until he could effect his object there, he would not be persuaded to leave the spot, although other projects of far greater political importance were now at stake. Commines states that "the lord Scales (meaning Anthony then earl Rivers, the king's brother-in-law,) was sent twice, with several other ambassadors, to the duke[42]; but the duke was perverse, as if God Almighty had infatuated his senses and understanding; for all his life long he had been labouring to get the English over to invade France, and now, when they were ready, and all things prepared to receive them both in Bretagne and elsewhere, he obstinately persisted in an enterprise in which it was impossible for him to succeed."


There was an apostolic legate at that time with the emperor, and the king of Denmark was quartered in the same neighbourhood, and they both endeavoured to negociate a peace, by which means the duke of Burgundy might, if he would, have had honourable terms, and thus have been free to join the king of England, but he would not accept their overtures. To the English he excused himself as plausibly as he could, telling them that his honour was engaged, and it would be a lessening to his reputation to raise the siege of Neuss, with other like excuses. "The Englishmen (adds the historian) were not the same who had flourished in his father's days, and had conducted themselves with so much valour and skill in the old wars with France; but these were all raw soldiers, utterly unacquainted with French affairs; so that the duke acted very unwisely, if he had any design to make a future use of them, for in that case he ought to have led them on, as it were step by step, at least during the first campaign."

The earliest bad consequence that resulted to the duke of Burgundy from his lingering at the seige of Neuss, was the loss of the three towns of Montdidier, Roye, and Corbie, which were taken by the king of France, shortly after the termination of his truce with Burgundy, which expired on the 1st of May 1475. Still the duke would not quit the siege of Neuss before the 13th of June.

In the meanwhile, king Edward landed at Calais. His army is described by Commines as "the most numerous, the best mounted, and the best equipped, that ever any king of England had invaded France withal. He was attended by all the lords of England, with few exceptions. He had 1500 men of arms, richly accoutred after the French fashion, well mounted, and most of them barded,[43] and every one of them had several persons on horseback in his retinue. The archers were 15,000, all on horseback; besides a great number of footmen, and others to pitch the tents and pavilions, take care of the artillery, and inclose the camp; and there was not one varlet in the whole army. There was besides a body of 3000 men who were to be landed in Bretagne."

After these particulars, Commines repeats his censures of the duke of Burgundy's infatuated conduct, in throwing away that advantage of English aid, which he had been labouring all his life to procure. He ought (it is remarked) to have known that it was necessary for him to have made at least one campaign with the English, in order to have instructed them in the method of the French wars; for, though no nation is more raw or undisciplined than the English on their first coming over, yet a little time makes them excellent soldiers, equally brave and skilful. But the duke's conduct was just the reverse; and, among other {xxvii}disadvantages which ensued, the season was almost lost, and his own army so worn out and diminished, that he was ashamed they should be seen, for he had lost before Neuss 4000 of his soldiers, the very flower of his army.

The English were, however, assisted in the transport of their horses by the duke of Burgundy providing them five hundred flat-bottomed vessels of Holland and Zeeland; yet, notwithstanding that large number, and all the vessels king Edward could procure from his own ports, the passage of his forces occupied more than three weeks: "from whence one may observe (remarks Commines) with what amazing difficulty the kings of England transport their armies into France; and, if the king of France had understood maritime affairs as well as he did those of the land, king Edward would never have crossed over, at least that year; but king Louis had no skill in naval matters, and those to whom he committed his authority knew less of them than himself; yet one of our men-of-war, belonging to Eu, took two or three of their transports.

"Before the king of England embarked from Dover, he sent one of his heralds, named Garter, who was a native of Normandy,[44] to the king of France, with a letter of defiance, written in such an elegant style, and in such polite language, that I can scarcely believe any Englishman indited it. The contents were, that our king should surrender France to the king of England, as his right and inheritance, to the end that he might restore the church, the nobility, and the people to their ancient liberty, and relieve them from the great oppression and burthens they groaned under; and, if king Louis refused, it was declared that all the ensuing miseries and calamities would lie at his door, according to the forms usual upon such occasions.

"The king of France read the letter to himself, and then, withdrawing into another room, commanded the herald to be called in; to whom he said,—I am very sensible that your master has not made this invasion of his own seeking, but at the importunity of the duke of Burgundy and the commons of England. He then remarked that the season was visibly far spent, and that the duke of Burgundy {xxviii}had returned from Neuss in so weak and miserable a condition, that he would not be in a capacity to assist the invaders; that, as to the constable,[45] he was satisfied he held intelligence with the king of England, who had married his niece,[46] but there was no confidence to be reposed in him, for he would deceive king Edward, as he had often deceived himself; and, after enumerating the favours which he had conferred upon him, Louis added, 'His plan is to live in eternal dissimulation, to traffic with everybody, and to make his advantage of all.' Besides these, the king used several other arguments to induce the herald to persuade his master to an accommodation with him, giving him 300 crowns with his own hand, and promising him 1000 more upon the conclusion of the peace; and afterwards, in public, his majesty ordered him to be rewarded with a fine piece of crimson velvet, thirty ells in length.

"The herald replied, that, according to his capacity, he would contribute all that lay in his power towards a peace, and he believed his master would be glad to entertain the proposal; but nothing could be done until he was landed in France, and then, if king Louis pleased, he might send a herald to desire a passport for his ambassadors, if he had a mind to send any to king Edward; but withal Garter desired the king to address letters to the lords Howard or Stanley,[47] and also to himself, that he might introduce the French herald.

"There was a host of people attending outside during the king's private discourse with the herald, all of them impatient to hear what the king would say, and to see how his majesty looked when he came forth. When he had done, (continues Commines,) he called me, and charged me to entertain the herald till he {xxix}ordered him an escort, that I might keep him from talking privately with anybody; he commanded me likewise to give him a piece of crimson velvet of thirty ells, which I did. After which the king addressed himself to the rest of the company, giving them an account of the letters of defiance; and, having called seven or eight of them apart, he ordered the letters to be read aloud, showing himself very cheerful and valiant, without the least sign of fear in the world; for indeed he was much revived by what he had learned from the herald."

When the duke of Burgundy first came to wait on the king of England at Calais, he was attended only by a small retinue,[48] having dismissed his army into the countries of Barrois and Lorraine to plunder and refresh themselves (the duke of Lorraine having declared himself his enemy). The English had expected him to have joined them at their landing with at least 2500 men at arms, well provided, and a considerable body of horse and foot; and that he should have opened the campaign in France three months before their descent, when they might have found king Louis already harassed with the war and in great distress.

King Edward (by the stages already described from Molinet,) marched to Peronne, a town belonging to the duke of Burgundy. The English, however, except in small companies, were not received within its gates, but they formed their encampment in the adjacent fields.[49] At this place a messenger arrived from the constable of France, bringing letters both for the duke and the king.[50] To the former he made strong professions of friendship and service, declaring that he would assist him and his allies, and particularly the king of England, against all persons and princes whatever. In his letter to king Edward he referred his good-meaning to the duke of Burgundy's testimony. The duke communicated also to the king the contents of his own letter from the constable, somewhat exaggerating them, and assuring Edward that the constable would receive him into the town of St. Quentin, and all the other towns under his control; and king Edward really believed it, because he had married the constable's niece, and he thought him so terribly afraid of the king of France, that he would not venture to break his promise to the duke and himself. Nor was the duke of Burgundy less credulous than king Edward. {xxx}But neither the perplexities of the constable, nor his dread of the king of France, had as yet carried him so far; his design was only to wheedle and amuse them (according to his custom), and suggest to them such plausible reasons as might prevail with them not to force him to declare himself openly.

"The king of England and his nobility (remarks Commines,) were not so well skilled in artifice and subtlety as the lords of France, but went more bluntly and ingenuously about their business; so that they were not so sharp at discovering the intrigues and deceptions common on this side of the water. The English that have never travelled are naturally headstrong, as the people generally are in all cold countries."

Commines next relates how the English, when they attempted to occupy the town of St. Quentin, were driven off with the loss of some killed and others taken prisoners; and how on the following morning the duke of Burgundy took his leave of king Edward, in order to return to his forces in Barrois, pretending he would do great feats for the English; but the English, being naturally of a jealous temper, novices on this side of the water, and astonished at this kind of proceeding, began to entertain an ill opinion of their ally, and were not satisfied he had any army at all; besides, the duke of Burgundy could not reconcile them to the constable's manner of receiving them, though he endeavoured to persuade them all was well, and that what was done would turn to their advantage; but all the duke of Burgundy's arguments did not pacify them, and, being disheartened at the approach of winter, they seemed by their expressions to be more inclinable to peace than war.

Meanwhile, king Louis was thinking upon the suggestions which had been made to him by Garter king of arms; and a message he received from the lords Howard and Stanley by a dismissed prisoner determined him to put them in action. With the assistance of Commines, he tutored a clever servant to act as a herald, equipping him for the occasion in a coat of arms formed from the banner of a trumpeter,—for king Louis was not so stately nor so vain as to maintain a herald in his train as other princes did.

The man was sent off to the English camp, where, on his arrival, he was immediately conducted to the tent of king Edward. Being asked his business, he said he was come with a message from the king of France to the king of England, and had orders to address himself to the lords Howard and Stanley. He was taken into a tent to dinner, and very gently entertained. When king Edward had dined, he sent for the herald, who then said that his errand was to acquaint his majesty that the king of France had long desired to be at amity with him, that {xxxi}both their kingdoms might be at ease, and enjoy the blessings of peace; that, since his accession to the crown of France, he had never made war or attempted anything against king Edward or his kingdom; and, as for having formerly entertained the earl of Warwick, he had done that more from opposition to the duke of Burgundy than from any quarrel with the king of England. He next proceeded to represent that the duke of Burgundy had invited king Edward over, only in order to make his own terms the better with France; and, if others had joined with him, it was to secure themselves against their former offences, or to advance their private objects; which when they had once compassed, they would not regard the interests of the king of England, provided they had attained their own ends. He represented likewise the lateness of the season, that winter was approaching, that his master was sensible of the great charges king Edward had been at, and that he knew that in England there were many, both of the nobility and merchants, who were desirous of a war on this side of the water; yet, if the king should be inclined to a treaty, his master would not refuse to come to such terms as should be agreeable both to himself and to his subjects; and if the king of England had a mind to be more particularly informed of these matters, on his giving a passport for 100 horse, his master would send ambassadors to him with full instructions: or, if king Edward should prefer to depute certain commissioners, king Louis would gladly consent to that arrangement, and send them a passport to hold a conference in some village between the two armies.

The king of England and part of his nobility were extremely pleased with these proposals; a passport was given to the herald according to his request, and, having been rewarded with four nobles in money, he was attended by a herald from the king of England to obtain the king of France's passport in the same form as the other; which being given, the next morning the commissioners met in a village near Amiens. On the part of the king of France, there were the Bastard of Bourbon admiral of France, the lord of St. Pierre, and the bishop of Evreux. On the king of England's side, there were the lord Howard, doctor Morton then master of the rolls and afterwards archbishop of Canterbury, William Dudley dean of the king's chapel, and Thomas Selynger.[51] Many overtures passed between these negociators. The English at first demanded, according to their custom, the crown of France; and then gradually fell to Normandy and Guienne. The French commissioners replied as became them; so that the demands were well urged on the one side, and well refused on the other: yet, from the very first day {xxxii}of the treaty there was great prospect of an accommodation, for both parties seemed very inclinable to hearken to reasonable proposals.

King Louis was exceedingly pleased when matters had taken this favourable turn, and he employed all his arts to bring the negociation to a peaceful termination. He sent every hour to entertain and wheedle the treacherous constable, and prevent him from doing any harm. He resolved to raise without delay the money required to buy off the invaders,[52] declaring that he would do any thing in the world to get the king of England out of France, except putting any towns into his possession, for, rather than do that, which had been suggested by the constable, he would hazard all.

The conclusion of the terms of the treaty was made on the 13th of August, king Edward being then "in his felde beside a village called Seyntre,[53] within Vermondose, a litell from Peronne," attended by his brothers the dukes of Clarence and Gloucester, the dukes of Norfolk and Suffolk, the bishop of Lincoln his chancellor, the marquess of Dorset, the earls of Northumberland, Riviers, and Pembroke, the lords Grey de Ruthyn, Scrope, Grey of Codnor, Stanley, Hastings, Ferrers, Howard, the earl Douglas, lord Lisle, the master of the Rolls, the dean of the king's chapel, the deans of Wells and Westminster, sir Thomas Mountgomery, sir Thomas Borough, sir William Parre, sir Richard Tunstall, Thomas Selynger, and John Elkyngton treasurer of the king's wars; most of whom signed the public declaration[54] of the king's determination, which is stated to have been founded on these three considerations,—"the povertie of his armyes, the nygh approachyng of wynter, and small assistance of his allies."

It was at the same time agreed, that the two kings should have an interview, and swear mutually to the performance of certain articles; after which the king of England should return to his own country, upon the receipt of 72,000 crowns (as stated by Commines, but the amount finally settled was 75,000), leaving the lord Howard and sir John Cheyne as hostages until his arrival in England. In addition, pensions amounting to 16,000 crowns were promised to the privy councillors {xxxiii}of the king of England, viz. to the lord Hastings[55] 2000 crowns a-year, to the chancellor (Rotherham) 2000, and the remainder to the lord Howard, the master of the horse (Cheyne), Thomas St. Leger, sir Thomas Mountgomery, and several others, besides a great deal of ready money and plate[56] that was distributed among the rest of the king of England's retinue.

Louis contrived to carry his corruption through every grade of his adversaries. He purchased from one of the English secretaries for sixty silver marks two letters which had been addressed by the seigneur d'Urfé, who was then in the duke of Bretagne's service, (and afterwards master of the horse of France,) one directed to the king of England, and the other to the lord Hastings, lord chamberlain of England. They were shown to Commines, who noticed in them this, among other expressions, That the duke of Bretagne would do more by his intelligence in a month, than the king of England and the duke of Burgundy both, with all the force they could make.

The duke of Burgundy, who was then at Luxembourg, having intimation of these negociations, came in great haste to the king of England, attended only with sixteen horse.[57] King Edward was much surprised at his unexpected arrival, and inquired what it was that had brought him, for he saw by his countenance that he was angry. The duke told him that he came to talk with him. The king of England asked whether it should be in public or private? Then the duke demanded whether he had made a peace? The king replied, that he had made a truce for nine years, in which the duke of Bretagne and himself were {xxxiv}comprehended,[58] and his desire was that they should accept of that comprehension. The duke fell into a violent passion, and in English, a language that he spoke very well, began to recount the glorious achievements of Edward's predecessors on the throne of England, who had formerly invaded France, and how they had spared no pains, nor refused any danger, that might render them famous, and gain them immortal honour and renown abroad. Then he inveighed against the truce, and told the king he had not invited the English over into France out of any necessity he had of their assistance, but only to put them in a way of recovering their own right and inheritance; and, to convince them he could subsist without their alliance, he was resolved not to make use of the truce until the king had been three months in England. Having unburthened himself in this manner, the duke took his leave, and returned to Luxembourg. The king of England and his council were extremely irritated by his language, but others who were adverse to the peace highly extolled it.

But, however dissatisfied the duke was with the truce, the constable of France had cause to be still more so: for, having deceived all parties, he could expect nothing but inevitable ruin. He made one more attempt to ingratiate himself with king Edward, by offering him the towns of Eu and St. Valery for winter quarters, and a loan of 50,000 crowns; but king Louis immediately received intimation of this, and at once ordered the two towns to be burned. King Edward returned to the constable this answer, "That the truce was already concluded, and could not be altered; but, had the constable performed his former promise (as to the town of St. Quentin), the truce would never have been made." This answer stung the constable to the very soul, and made him desperate on all sides.

In order to bring the treaty to a conclusion, king Edward advanced within half a league of Amiens; and the king of France, being upon one of the gates of the city, (where he had arrived on the 22d of August,) viewed from a distance the English army marching up. "Speaking impartially, (continues Commines,) the troops seemed but raw and unused to action in the field; for they were in very ill order, and observed no manner of discipline. Our king sent the king of England 300 cartloads[59] of the best wines in France as a present, and I think the {xxxv}carts made as great a show as the whole English army. Upon the strength of the truce, numbers of the English came into the town, where they behaved themselves very imprudently, and without the least regard to their prince's honour; for they entered the streets all armed, and in great companies, so that if the king of France could have dispensed with his oath, never was there so favourable an opportunity of cutting off a considerable number of them; but his majesty's design was only to entertain them nobly, and to settle a firm and lasting peace, that might endure during his reign. The king had ordered two long tables to be placed on either side the street, at the entrance of the town gate, which were covered with a variety of good dishes of all sorts of viands most likely to relish their wine, of which there was great plenty, and of the richest that France could produce, with a troop of servants to wait on them; but not a drop of water was drank. At each of the tables the king had placed five or six boon companions, persons of rank and condition, to entertain those who had a mind to take a hearty glass, amongst whom were the lord of Craon, the lord of Briquebec, the lord of Bressure, the lord of Villiers, and several others. As the English came up to the gate, they saw what was prepared, and there were persons appointed on purpose to take their horses by the bridles and lead them to the tables, where every man was treated handsomely, as he came in his turn, to their very great satisfaction. When they had once entered the town, wherever they went, or whatever they called for, nothing was to be paid; there were nine or ten taverns liberally furnished with all that they wanted, the French king bearing all the costs of that entertainment, which lasted three or four days."

On Childermas day (the 28th of August[60]) the license of the English visitors had grown to such a height, that it was. estimated that there were at least 9000 of them in the town. The councillors of Louis were alarmed, and although on that day the superstitious monarch never spoke upon business, nor allowed any one else to address him thereon, but took it as an ill omen, Commines was induced to disturb his devotions, in order to inform him of the state of affairs. The king commanded him immediately to get on horseback, and endeavour to speak with some of the English captains of note, to persuade them to order their troops to retire, and if he met any of the French captains to send them to him, for he {xxxvi}would be at the gate as soon as Commines. Commines met three or four English commanders of his acquaintance, and spoke to them according to the king's directions; but for one man that they directed to leave the town, there were twenty that came in. In company with the lord of Gié (afterwards maréchal of France) Commines went into a tavern, where, though it was not yet one o'clock, there had already been a hundred and eleven reckonings that morning. The house was filled with company; some were singing, others were asleep, and all were drunk; upon observing which circumstance, Commines concluded there was no danger, and sent to inform the king of it; who came immediately to the gate, well attended, having commanded 200 or 300 men at arms to be harnessed privately in their captains' houses, some of whom he posted at the gate by which the English entered. The king then ordered his dinner to be brought to the porter's lodgings at the gate, where he dined, and did several English captains the honour of admitting them to dinner with him. The king of England had been informed of this disorder, and was much ashamed of it, and sent to the king of France to desire him to admit no more of his soldiers into the town. The king of France sent him word back he would not do that, but if the king of England pleased to send a party of his own guards thither, the gate should be delivered up to their charge, and they then might let in or shut out whomever they pleased, which was done accordingly.

In order to bring the whole affair to a conclusion, consultation was now taken for the place that might be most convenient for the proposed interview between the two kings, and commissioners were appointed to survey it,—the lord du Bouchage and Commines on the French part, and the lord Howard, Thomas St. Leger, and a herald on the English. Upon taking view of the river, they agreed upon Picquigny, where the Somme is neither wide nor fordable. On the one side, by which king Louis would approach, was a fine open country; and on the other side it was the same, only when king Edward came to the river, he was obliged to traverse a causeway about two bow-shots in length, with marshes on both sides, "which might (remarks Commines) have produced very dangerous consequences to the English, if our intentions had not been honourable. And certainly, as I have said before, the English do not manage their treaties and capitulations with so much cunning and policy as the French do, let people say what they will, but proceed more openly, and with greater straightforwardness; yet a man must be careful, and take heed not to affront them, for it is dangerous meddling with them."

When the place of meeting was settled, the next business was to build a bridge, {xxxvii}which was done by French carpenters. The bridge was large and strong, and in the midst was contrived a massive wooden lattice, such as lions' cages were made with, every aperture between the bars being no wider than to admit a man's arm; at the top were merely boards to keep off the rain, and the area was large enough to contain ten or twelve men on a side, the bars running full out to either side of the bridge, to hinder any person from passing either to the one side or the other. For passage across the river there was provided only one small boat, rowed by two men.

The incident in French history which suggested these extraordinary precautions had occurred fifty-six years before; when, at a similar meeting upon a bridge at Montereau fault Yonne, John duke of Burgundy and his attendants were treacherously slaughtered in the presence of Charles the Seventh (then Dauphin), in revenge for the murder of Louis duke of Orleans. In the barricade of that fatal bridge there was a wicket, which the duke himself incautiously opened; a circumstance which the timid Louis well remembered, and he now repeated the story to Commines, and expressly commanded that there should be no such doorway.

When the bridge at Picquigny was ready, the interview between the two kings took place on the 29th of August 1475. The description which Commines gives of it is highly graphic and interesting: "The king of France came first, attended by about 800 men of arms. On the king of England's side, his whole army was drawn up in battle array; and, though we could not ascertain their total force, yet we saw such a vast number both of horse and foot, that the body of troops which was with us seemed very inconsiderable in comparison with them; but indeed the fourth part of our army was not there. It was arranged that twelve men of a side were to attend each of the kings at the interview, and they were already chosen from among their greatest and most trusty courtiers. We had with us four of the king of England's retinue to view what was done among us, and they had as many of ours, on their side, to have an eye over their actions. As I said before, our king came first to the barriers, attended by twelve persons, among whom were John duke of Bourbon and the cardinal his brother.[61] It was the king's pleasure (according to his old and frequent custom) that I should be dressed like him that day.[62]"


"The king of England advanced along the causeway very nobly attended, with the air and presence of a king." Commines recognised in his train his brother the duke of Clarence, the earl of Northumberland, his chamberlain the lord Hastings, his chancellor, and other peers of the realm; "among whom there were not above three or four dressed in cloth of gold like himself. The king wore a black velvet cap upon his head, and on it a large fleur-de-lis made of precious stones—[probably as a compliment to the French king]. He was a prince of a noble and majestic presence, but a little inclining to corpulence. I had seen him before when the earl of Warwick drove him out of his kingdom, in 1470[63]; then I thought him much handsomer, and, to the best of my remembrance, my eyes had never beheld a more handsome person. When he came within a little distance of the barrier he pulled off his cap, and bowed himself within half a foot of the ground; and the king of France, who was then leaning against the barrier, received him with abundance of reverence and respect. They embraced through the apertures of the barriers, and, the king of England making him another low bow, the king of France saluted him thus, 'Cousin, you are heartily welcome! There is no person living I was so desirous of seeing; and God be thanked that this interview is upon so good an occasion.' King Edward returned the compliment in very good French[64]."


"Then the chancellor of England (who was a prelate, and bishop of Lincoln) began his speech with a prophecy (with which the English are always provided), that at Picquigny a memorable peace was to be concluded between the English and French. After he had finished his harangue, the instrument was produced containing the articles which the king of France had sent to the king of England. The chancellor demanded of the king, whether he had dictated the said articles? and whether he agreed to them? The king replied, Yes; and when king Edward's letters were produced on our side, he made the like answer. The missal being then brought and opened, both the kings laid one of their hands upon the book, and the other upon the holy true cross, and both of them swore religiously to observe the contents of the truce.

"This solemnity performed, king Louis (who had always words at command) told king Edward in a jocular way that he should be glad to see him at Paris, and that if he would come and divert himself with the ladies, he would assign the cardinal of Bourbon for his confessor, who he knew would willingly absolve him if he should commit any peccadillo in the way of love and gallantry. King Edward was extremely pleased with his raillery, and made him many good repartees, for he was aware that the cardinal was a gay man with the ladies, and a boon companion.

"After some further discourse to this purpose, the French king, to shew his authority, commanded those who attended him to withdraw, for he had a mind to have a little private discourse with the king of England. They obeyed; and those who were with king Edward, seeing the French retire, did the same, without waiting to be commanded. After the two kings had conversed together alone for some time, our master (continues Commines) called me to him, and asked the king {xl}of England whether he knew me. King Edward said that he did, naming the places where he had seen me, and told the king that I had formerly endeavoured to serve him at Calais, when I was in the duke of Burgundy's service. The king of France demanded, If the duke of Burgundy refused to be comprehended in the treaty—as might be suspected from his obstinate answer—what the king of England would have him do? The king of England replied, he would offer it to him a second time, and, if he then refused it, he would not concern himself any further, but leave it entirely to themselves. By degrees king Louis came to mention the duke of Bretagne, who was really the person he aimed at in the question, and made the same demand as to him. The king of England desired that he would not attempt anything against the duke of Bretagne, for in his distress he had never found so true and faithful a friend. Louis then pressed him no further, but, recalling the company, took his leave of king Edward[65] in the politest and most flattering terms imaginable, and saluted all his attendants with especial courtesy; whereupon both monarchs at the same time retired from the barrier, and, mounting on horseback, the king of France returned to Amiens, and the king of England to his army. King Edward was supplied from the French household with whatever he required, to the very torches and candles."

By the treaty thus concluded king Edward engaged to return to England with his army so soon as king Louis had paid him the sum of 75,000 crowns. A truce for seven years was concluded between the two sovereigns; and they mutually undertook to assist each other in case either prince should be attacked by his enemies or by his rebellious subjects; and, to make this alliance still closer, Charles the son of Louis was to wed the princess Elizabeth, king Edward's eldest daughter, so soon as they were both of marriageable age.

By the fourth and last article, the king of France engaged to pay annually to the king of England, in two instalments, the sum of 50,000 crowns.

Commines states that the duke of Gloucester, king Edward's younger brother, and some other Englishmen of high rank, being averse to the treaty, were not present at the interview; though (he adds) they afterwards recollected themselves, and the duke of Gloucester waited upon king Louis at Amiens, where he was splendidly entertained, and received noble presents both of plate and of fine horses.


The chronicler Jean de Molinet also mentions the duke of Gloucester's disapproval of the peace, although, as we have seen, he had signed the preliminary articles of agreement on the 13th of August. It is by no means inconsistent with the aspiring character of Richard duke of Gloucester—who at this period was not twenty-three years of age—that he should have affected to place himself at the head of the more martial and chivalrous party of the English nobility, and that Commines had good information of his policy in that respect.

The same delightful historian, who, not content with barren facts, confidentially introduces his readers into the secret motives and reflections of the actors in his story, supplies some remarkable particulars of the sentiments of his master king Louis on the result of this memorable interview, which form as it were the finishing touches of his picture.

Whilst Louis was riding back to Amiens, he expressed his misgivings upon two incidents in what had passed. One was that the king of England had so readily caught at the idea of visiting Paris. "He is (said Louis,) a handsome prince, a great admirer of the ladies, and who knows but that he might find one of them at Paris, who would say so many pretty things to him, as to make him desirous to come again? His ancestors have been too often in Paris and Normandy already; and I do not care for his company so near, though on the other side of the water I shall be ready to esteem him as my friend and brother." Louis was also displeased to find the English king so resolute in relation to the duke of Bretagne, upon whom he would fain have made war; and to that purpose he made him further overtures by the lord de Bouchage and the lord de St. Pierre; but when Edward found himself pressed, he gave them this short but honourable answer, that if any one invaded the duke of Bretagne's dominions he would cross the sea again in his defence. Upon which the French king importuned him no more.

When Louis was arrived at Amiens, and was ready to go to supper, three or four of the English lords, who had attended upon the king of England at the interview, came to sup with his majesty; and one of them, the lord Howard, told the king in his ear that, if he desired it, he would readily find a way to bring the king his master to him to Amiens, and perhaps to Paris too, to be merry with him. Though this proposition was not in the least agreeable to Louis, yet he dissembled the matter pretty well, and began washing his hands, without giving a direct answer; but he whispered to Commines, and said that what he had dreaded was really coming to pass. After supper the subject was renewed, but the king then put it off with the greatest quietness and tact {xlii}imaginable, alleging that his expedition against the duke of Burgundy would require his departure immediately.

Thus, (as our pleasant friend remarks,) though these affairs were of the highest moment, and required the gravest caution to manage them discreetly, yet they were not unattended by some agreeable incidents that deserve to be related to posterity. Nor ought any man to wonder, considering the great mischiefs which the English had brought upon the kingdom of France, and the freshness of their date, that the king should incur so much trouble and expense to send them home in an amicable manner, and endeavour to make them his friends for the future, or at least divert them from being his enemies.

The next day the English came into Amiens in great numbers, and some of them reported that the Holy Ghost had made the peace, producing some prophecy in support of the assertion: but their greatest proof was that during the interview a white dove came and sat upon the king of England's tent, and could not be frightened away by any noise they could make. The less superstitious, however, explained the incident more rationally; a shower having fallen, and the sun afterwards shining out very warm, when the pigeon, finding that tent higher than the others, came thither to dry herself. This was the explanation given to Commines by a Gascon gentleman named Louis de Bretailles,[66] who was in the king of England's service. This gentleman was one of those who saw further than others into the state of affairs, and, being an old acquaintance of Commines, he privately {xliii}expressed his opinion that the French were making sport of the king of England. During the conversation, Commines asked him how many battles king Edward had fought. He answered nine, and that he had been in every one of them in person. Commines then asked how many he had lost. Bretailles replied, Never but one; and that was this, in which the French had outwitted him now; for in his opinion the ignominy of king Edward's returning so soon after such vast preparations, would be a greater disgrace and stain to his reputation than all the honour he had achieved in his nine previous victories. Commines repeated this smart answer to his master, who replied, He is a shrewd fellow, I warrant him, and we must have a care of his tongue. The next day Louis sent for him, had him to dinner at his own table, and made him very advantageous proposals, if he would quit his master's service, and live in France; but, finding he was not to be prevailed upon, he presented him with a thousand crowns, and promised he would do great matters for his brothers in France. Upon his going away, Commines whispered him in his ear, and desired him to employ his good offices to continue and propagate that love and good understanding which was so happily begun between the two kings.

Though Louis could scarcely conceal his delight and self-gratulation at the success of his policy, yet his timidity was continually revived when he imagined that he had dropped any expressions that might reach the ears of the English, and make them suspect that he had overreached and deluded them. On the morning following the interview, being alone in his closet with only three or four of his attendants, he began to droll and jest upon the wines and presents which he had sent into the English camp, but, turning suddenly round, he became aware of the presence of a Gascon merchant who lived in England, and was come to solicit license to export a certain quantity of Bordeaux wines without paying the duties. Louis was startled at seeing him, and wondered how he had gained admission. The king asked him of what town in Guienne he was, whether he was a merchant, and whether married in England. The man replied yes, he had a wife in England, but what estate he had there was but small. Before he went away, the king appointed one to go with him to Bordeaux, and Commines had also some talk with him, by his majesty's express command. Louis conferred on him a considerable post of employment in his native town, granted him exemption from duty {xliv}for his wines, and gave him a thousand francs to bring his wife over from England, but he was to send his brother for her, and not go personally to fetch her; and all these penalties the king imposed upon himself for having indulged in too great freedom of speech.

As soon as king Edward had received his money, and delivered the lord Howard and sir John Cheyne as hostages until he was landed in England, he retired towards Calais by long and hasty marches, for he was suspicious of the duke of Burgundy's anger, and the vengeance of the peasants; and, indeed, if any of his soldiers straggled, some of them were sure to be knocked on the head.

"Uppon the xxviijth daye of Septembre folowynge he was with great tryumphe receyved of the mayor and cytezeyns of London at Blakheth, and with all honoure by theym conveyed thorugh the cytie unto Westmynster, the mayer and aldermen beynge clade in scarlet, and the commoners to the nombre of v C. in murrey."[67]

The treacherous constable of France again turning round, in order if possible to recover his lost favour with his own sovereign,[68] sent a messenger to Louis, offering to persuade the duke of Burgundy to join his forces with the king's, and destroy the king of England and his whole army on their return. But this last shift of the baffled traitor only contributed to confirm his ruin. King Edward communicated to Louis (probably before this offer) two letters which the constable had addressed to him, and related all the proposals he had from time to time made; so that his three-fold treasons were revealed to all the princes with whose rival interests he had endeavoured to play his own game, and they were all alike provoked to join in his destruction.

Louis contemplated his punishment with the bitterest animosity. When he received the overture above stated, there were only in his presence the lord {xlv}Howard the English hostage, the lord de Coutay, who was newly returned from an embassy to the duke of Burgundy, the lord du Lude, and Commines, which two had been employed to receive the constable's messenger. The king, calling for one of his secretaries, dictated a letter to the constable, acquainting him with what had been transacted the day before in relation to the truce; and adding that at that instant he had weighty affairs upon his hands, and wanted such a head as his to finish them. Then turning to the English nobleman and to the lord de Coutay, he said, "I do not mean his body. I would have his head with me, and his body where it is." After the letter had been read, Louis delivered it to Rapine the constable's messenger, who was mightily pleased with it, and took it as a great compliment in the king to write that he wanted such a head as his master's, for he did not perceive the ambiguity and sting of the expression.

We are now arrived at the closing reflections of Commines upon the course which events had taken in France at this memorable crisis. "At the beginning of our affairs with the English, you may remember that the king of England had no great inclination to make his descent; and as soon as he came to Dover, and before his embarkation there, he entered into a sort of treaty with us. But that which prevailed with him to transport his army to Calais was first the solicitation of the duke of Burgundy, and the natural animosity of the English against the French, which has existed in all ages; and next to reserve to himself a great part of the money which had been liberally granted him for that expedition; for, as you have already heard, the kings of England live upon their own demesne revenue, and can raise no taxes but under the pretence of invading France. Besides, the king had another stratagem by which to content his subjects; for he had brought with him ten or twelve citizens of London, and other towns in England, all fat and jolly, the leaders of the English commons, of great power in their countries, such as had promoted the wars and had been very serviceable in raising that powerful army. The king ordered very fine tents to be made for them, in which they lay; but, that not being the kind of living they had been used to, they soon began to grow weary of the campaign, for they expected they should come to an engagement within three days of their landing, and the king multiplied their fears and exaggerated the dangers of the war, on purpose that they might be better satisfied with a peace, and aid him to quiet the murmurs of the people upon his return to England; for, since king Arthur's days, never king of England invaded France with so great a number of the nobility and such a formidable army. But, as you have heard, he returned immediately into England upon the conclusion of the peace, and then reserved for his own private use the {xlvi}greater part of the money that had been raised to pay the army; so that, in reality, he accomplished most of the designs he had in view. King Edward was not of a complexion or turn of mind to endure much hardship and labour, and such any king of England must encounter who designs to make any considerable conquest in France. Besides, our king was in a tolerable posture of defence, though he was not so well prepared in all respects as he ought to have been, by reason of the variety and multitude of his enemies. Another great object with the king of England was the arrangement of a marriage between our present king Charles the Eighth and his daughter; and this alliance, causing him to wink at several things, was a material advantage to our master's affairs.

"King Louis himself was very desirous to obtain a general peace. The vast numbers of the English had put him into great alarm; he had seen enough of their exploits in his time in his kingdom, and he had no wish to witness any more of them."

When Louis went to meet the duke of Burgundy's plenipotentiaries at a bridge half-way between Avesnes and Vervins, he took the English hostages with him, and they were present when he gave audience to the Burgundians. "One of them then told Commines that, if they had seen many such men of the duke of Burgundy's before, perhaps the peace had not been concluded so soon. The vîcomte of Narbonne, (afterwards comte of Foix,) overhearing him, replied, 'Could you be so weak as to believe that the duke of Burgundy had not great numbers of such soldiers? he had only sent them into quarters of refreshment; but you were in such haste to be at home again, that six hundred pipes of wine and a pension from our king sent you presently back into England.' The Englishman was irritated, and answered with much warmth, 'I plainly see, as everybody said, that you have done nothing but cheat us. But do you call the money your king has given us a pension? It is a tribute; and, by Saint George! you may prate so much as will bring us back again to prove it.' I interrupted their altercation, and turned it into a jest; but the Englishman would not understand it so, and I informed the king of it, and his majesty was much offended with the vîcomte of Narbonne."

King Edward, being highly disgusted with the duke of Burgundy's rejection of his truce, and his subsequent offer to make a distinct peace with the king of France, despatched a great favourite of his, named sir Thomas Mountgomery, to king Louis at Vervins, and he arrived whilst the negociation was proceeding with the duke of Burgundy's envoys. Sir Thomas desired, on the behalf of the king his master, that the king of France would not consent to any other truce with the {xlvii}duke than what was already made.[69] He also pressed Louis not to deliver St. Quentin into the duke's hands; and, as further encouragement, Edward offered to repass the seas in the following spring with a powerful army to assist him, provided his majesty would continue in war against the duke of Burgundy, and compensate him for the prejudice he should sustain in his duties upon wool at Calais, which would be worth little or nothing in war time, though at other times they were valued at 50,000 crowns. He proposed likewise that the king of France should pay one-half of his army, and he would pay the other himself. Louis returned Edward abundance of thanks, and made sir Thomas a present of plate: but as to the continuation of the war, he begged to be excused, for the truce with Burgundy was already concluded, and upon the same terms as those which had been already agreed to between them; only the duke of Burgundy had pressed urgently to have a separate truce for himself; which circumstance Louis excused as well as he could, in order to satisfy the English ambassador, who with this answer returned home, accompanied by the hostages. "The king (adds Commines) felt extremely surprised at king Edward's offers, which were delivered before me only, and he conceived it would be very dangerous to bring the king of England into France again, for between those two nations, when brought into contact, any trifling accident might raise some new quarrel, and the English might easily make friends again with the duke of Burgundy." These considerations greatly forwarded the conclusion of the king of France's treaty with the Burgundians.

In fact, the duke of Burgundy at last overreached his brother-in-law king Edward, for he concluded a truce with France for nine years, whilst that of England with France was for seven years only. The duke's ambassadors requested king Louis that this truce might not be proclaimed immediately by sound of trumpet, as the usual custom was, for they were anxious to save the duke's oath to king Edward (when he swore in his passion that he would not accept of the benefit of the truce until the king had been in England three months), lest Edward should think their master had spoken otherwise than he designed.

As for Edward himself, whatever selfish satisfaction he may have derived from the result of the campaign,—such as Commines has already suggested—it must have weakened his popularity both with his nobles and with his people, whilst it terminated the former cordiality that had existed with his brother of Burgundy. The king of England had now become the pensioner of France, the great {xlviii}absorbing power of that age, which was soon to swallow up England's nearest and best allies, the duchies of Burgundy and Britany.

The French pension of 50,000 crowns was, as Commines relates, punctually paid every half-year in the Tower of London; and by a treaty made in Feb. 1478-9 it was renewed for the lives of Edward and Louis, and extended for a hundred years after the death of both princes: which seemed to give it more directly the character of a tribute, a term that Commines says the English applied to it, but which the French indignantly repelled. However, after little more than four years longer, it had answered its purpose, and its payment ceased. The English voluptuary then found himself entirely outwitted by the wily Frenchman. After the duke of Burgundy's death (in 1477) and that of his only daughter the wife of the archduke Maximilian (in 1482) his grand-daughter Margaret of Austria was suddenly betrothed to the Dauphin, in the place of the lady Elizabeth of England. Louis caught at this alliance in order to detach the counties of Burgundy and Artois from the territory of the Netherlands, and annex them to the crown of France; and the turbulent citizens of Ghent, in whose keeping the children[70] of their late sovereign lady were, were ready to make this concession, without the concurrence of the children's father, in order to reduce the power of their princes. This infant bride was then only three years and a half old; and had consequently made her appearance on the stage of life subsequently to the Dauphin's former contract with the English princess.[71]

Commines describes at some length the mortification experienced by king Edward when he heard of this alliance,—"finding himself deluded in the hopes he had entertained of marrying his daughter to the Dauphin, of which marriage both himself and his queen were more ambitious than of any other in the world, and never would give credit to any man, whether subject or foreigner, that endeavoured to persuade them that our king's intentions were not sincere and honourable. For the parliament (or council) of England had remonstrated to king Edward several times, when our king was in Picardy, that after he had conquered {xlix}that province he would certainly fall upon Calais and Guines, which are not far off. The ambassadors from the duke and duchess of Austria, as also those from the duke of Bretagne, who were continually in England at that time, represented the same thing to him; but to no purpose, for he would believe nothing of it, and he suffered greatly for his incredulity. Yet I am entirely of opinion that his conduct proceeded not so much from ignorance as avarice; for he was afraid to lose his pension of fifty thousand crowns, which our master paid him very punctually, and besides he was unwilling to leave his ease and pleasures, to which he was extremely devoted."

The enervated temper of Edward's latter years is faithfully depicted in the opening lines of one of the best-known works of our great Dramatic Poet:

Now are our brows bound with victorious wreaths,

Our bruised arms hung up for monuments;

Our stern alarums chang'd to merry meetings,

Our dreadful marches to delightful measures.

Grim-visaged War hath smooth'd his wrinkled front,

And now, instead of mounting barbed steeds,

To fright the souls of fearful adversaries,

He capers nimbly in a lady's chamber,

To the lascivious pleasing of a lute.

Shakspeare's Richard the Third, act i. sc. 1.

In another place Commines attributes the death of Edward the Fourth to the vexation he conceived at the great reverse in his political prospects, which disclosed itself on his loss of the French alliance. This conclusion is probably imaginary, though Edward's death certainly occurred whilst the Dauphin's new betrothal was in progress. The treaty of Arras, by which the arrangement was made, was signed on the 23d Dec. 1482, and the lady Margaret was delivered to the French, and met the Dauphin at Amboise, on the 22d of June following. King Edward died on the intervening 9th of April, a victim, as is generally thought, to his long course of intemperate living. It is obvious, however, that the failure of the French alliance must have been a very serious loss to Edward's family, who were left defenceless on his death, although he had previously contracted his daughters to the heirs of France, Scotland, Spain, and Burgundy.

Altogether, the ruin of the house of York, if we may credit Commines, was the eventual result of the fatal compromise made in the campaign of 1475, and of {l}the enervating and corrupting influences exercised by the French pensions which were then accepted by king Edward and his ministers. Thenceforward, any hope of recovering the English provinces of France was indefinitely deferred; the very echoes of those martial glories which had once made the English name so dreadful in that country were allowed to die away; the dreams of conquest were dissipated; and the hands of Englishmen again turned to internecine contests, which resulted in the total destruction of the royal house of Plantagenet, and the ruin of a large proportion of the ancient nobility.

The Boke of Noblesse, after the total failure of those more generous sentiments and aspirations which it was intended to propagate, at once became, what it is now, a mere mirror of by-gone days; and, considering these circumstances, we cannot be surprised that it was never again transcribed, nor found its way to the press.

It is with regret that I relinquish to some future more fortunate inquirer the discovery of the author of this composition. The manuscript from which it is printed is certainly not his autograph original; for its great inaccuracy occasionally renders the meaning almost unintelligible. And yet the corrections and insertions, which I have indicated as coming à secundâ manu, would seem to belong to the author.

I have already, in the first page of this Introduction, intimated the possibility of the work having been composed in the lifetime of sir John Fastolfe, and merely re-edited, if we may use the term, upon occasion of the projected invasion of France in 1475. There are three circumstances which decidedly connect the book with some dependent of sir John Fastolfe:—

1. That the writer quotes sir John as "mine autour," or informant, in pp. 16 and 64, as well as tells other anecdotes which were probably received from his relation.

2. His having access to sir John's papers or books of account (p. 68); and

3. There being still preserved in the volume, bound up with its fly-leaves, the two letters, probably both addressed to Fastolfe, and one of them certainly so, which are printed hereafter, as an Appendix to these remarks.

Sir John Fastolfe is not commemorated as having been a patron of literature. In the inventory of his property which is printed in the twentieth volume of the Archæologia, no books occur except a few missals, &c. belonging to his chapel. Though William of Worcestre, now famous for his historical collections, (which have been edited by Hearne, Nasmith, and Dallaway,) was Fastolfe's secretary, he was kept in a subordinate position, and valued for his merely clerical, {li}not his literary, services. Sir John Fastolfe's passion was the acquisition of property; whilst William of Worcestre, on his part, followed (as far as he could) the bent of his own taste, and not that of his master; being (as his comrade Henry Windsore declared) as glad to obtain a good book of French or of Poetry as his master Fastolfe was to purchase a fair manor.[72]

The translation of Cicero de Senectute, which was printed by Caxton in 1481, is indeed in the preface stated to have been translated by the ordinance and desire of the noble ancient knight sir John Fastolfe;[73] and, though Worcestre's name is not mentioned by Caxton, we may conclude that it was the same translation which from Worcestre's own memoranda we know was made by him.[74] Still, it was but a very slight deference to literature, if the ancient knight approved of his secretary's translating "Tully on Old Age," and did not make any further contribution towards its publication.

But on the particular subject of the loss of the English provinces in France, and the causes thereof, there can be no question that sir John Fastolfe, the "baron {lii}of Sillie le Guillem," once governor of Anjou and Maine, and lord of Piron and Beaumont, took the deepest interest; considering that he had spent his best days in their acquisition, administration, and defence, and that he was one of the principal sufferers by their loss. He may, therefore, well have promoted the composition of the work now before us.

William of Worcestre has the reputation of having written a memoir[75] of the exploits of sir John Fastolfe; but this is not traceable beyond the bare assertion of Bale, and a more recent misapprehension of the meaning of one of the Paston letters.


Another person whose name has occurred as having been employed in a literary capacity for sir John Fastolfe[76] is Peter Basset[77]; who is commemorated with some parade by Bale as an historical writer, but whose writings, though quoted by Hall the chronicler, have either disappeared or are no longer to be identified.

I have, however, mentioned the names of William of Worcestre and Peter Basset only from the circumstance of their being connected with that of sir John {liv}Fastolfe; and not from there being any other presumptive proof that either of them wrote "The Boke of Noblesse." We have no known production of Basset with which to compare it; and as to Worcestre his "Collectanea" and private Memoranda can scarcely assist us in determining what his style might have been had he attempted any such work as the present.

Altogether, The Boke of Noblesse is more of a compilation than an original essay. It has apparently largely borrowed from the French; and I have already shown that it was partly derived from former works, though I cannot undertake to say to what extent that was the case. In its general character our book resembles one which was popular in the middle ages, as the Secretum Secretorum, falsely attributed to Aristotle,[78] and which was also known under the title De Regimine Principum. The popularity of this work was so great that MS. copies occur in most of our public libraries, and not less than nine English translations and six French translations are known.[79] A Scots translation by sir Gilbert de Hay, entitled "The Buke of the Governaunce of Princis," is contained in a MS. at Abbotsford, accompanying a version of The Tree of Batailes, already noticed in pp. iii. vi.

Another work of the same class is that of which Caxton published (about the year 1484) a translation entitled The booke of the ordre of Chevalrye or Knyghthode, and of which the Scots translation by sir Gilbert de Hay was printed for the Abbotsford Club by Beriah Botfield, esq. in 1847.

To his translations of the treatises of Cicero on Old Age and Friendship, which Caxton printed in 1481, he also appended two "declaracyons," or orations, supposed to be spoken by two noble Roman knights before the senate, in order "to know wherein Noblesse restith," or, as otherwise expressed in the title-page, "shewing wherin Honoure should reste." These imaginary orations were the work of an Italian, who styled himself, in Latin, Banatusius Magnomontanus.

After a time, the term Noblesse, which we here find synonymous with Honour, and (in p. xv. ante) with Chivalry, in the sense of a class or order of society, {lv}became obsolete as an English word. In the former sense, at least, it was changed into our English "Nobleness;" and about the year 1530 we find published a "Book of Noblenes," printed by Robert Wyer, without date.[80] This work had been translated from Latin into French, and "now into English by John Larke." I have not seen it, but I imagine it was a far smaller and slighter composition than the present.[81]

Ames[82] mentioned our "Boke of Noblesse" as a printed work, on the authority of Tanner's MSS., but this was evidently a misapprehension.

It only now remains that I should describe the Manuscript, which is preserved in the Royal Collection at the British Museum, and marked 18 B. XXII.

It is written in a paper book, which is formed of four quires of paper, each consisting of six sheets, and is of the size of a modern quarto volume. The quires are marked in the lower margin with the signatures of the scribe: the first quire consisting of six sheets, placed within one another, and marked j. ij. iij. iiij. v. vj.; the second also of six sheets, marked .a.i. .a.ij. .a.iij. .a.iiij. .a.v. and .a.vj.; the third, b.1. .b.3. .b.4. .b.5. .b.6.; the fourth .c.1. c.2. c.3. c.4. c.5. c.6. Thus it is seen that the sheet containing the leaf b.2. and the attached leaf (b.11. as it might be called) is lost: and this loss occasions the defects which will be found in the present volume at p. 50 and p. 68.

In front of the volume are bound three leaves of vellum, on the last of which is fastened a slip of the like material, inscribed, apparently

Edwarde w [iiij?]

wych ys


On the back of the same leaf is the name of



At the foot of the first paper leaf is the autograph name of


i. e. John lord Lumley, the son-in-law of the last Earl of Arundel, into whose {lvi}possession the volume probably came by purchase in the reign of Elizabeth or James the First.

On the leaf .c.2. is the autograph name of Robert Savylle.

On the last leaf are many scribblings, and attempts in drawing grotesque heads and figures, apparently done about the time of queen Mary. Among them occurs again the name of

Symeon Sampson p.

Also those of Richarde Dyconson and Edward Jones of Clemente in the Jor of —— and these sentences,

John Twychener ys booke he that stellys thys booke

he shall be hangid a pon a hooke and that wylle macke

ys necke to brake & that wyll macke ys neck awrye

                    A nyes wiffe & a backe dore makythe brace
                    outon tymys a Ryche man pore.

In the name of the father of the Sonne and the holey Gost. So be itt.

Jhesus nazerinus Rex iudiorū fillij dei miserere mei.

Jhesus.) God save the king or souu'ain lorde.

Jhesus Nazarinus. God save king p. & mary.

O gloryous Jesu o mekest Jesu o moost sweteste Jesu have m'cye on us.

Quite at the bottom of the page is the name of

Edward Banyster.


(Royal MS. 18 B. XXII. f. 44.)

From John Appulton, captain of Pontdonné and the Haye de Puis.

Mon treshonnouré et Redoubté Sr., toute humble Recommendacion primier mise, plaise vous savoir que Jay entendu que piecha vous aviez quittie et transporté afin de heritaige a Degory Gamel vostre terre et seignourie de Piron pour le prix de deux mille francs lesquelx il devoit paier a chinq annees enssuit du dit transport, cest assavoir pour la premir ann six cens francs, et le demourant es autres quatres anns ensuit, a chacun par egalle porcion; de la quelle chose J'entens que le dit Degory na pas acompli ces termes ne ses {lvii}paiemens, car il nest pas tousjours prest de paier, et est de tel gouvernement que p..... que navez eu que peu de chose de vostre ditte s'rie dempuis quil en a eu le gouvernement. Et pour ce, mon treshonnouré et Redoubté, Janvois grant desir davoir icelle terre afin de heritaige si c'estoit vostre plaisir et volenté. Car elle est pres de mes et bien a mon aise. Sy vous prie et requier tant humblement comme Je puis et comme vostre petit et humble serviteur, qu'il vous pla[ira] que J'aie icelle terre et seigneurie de Piron par les prix et condicions dessus desclerés et que l'aviez accordee au dit Degory en cas que [sera] vostre plaisir de vous en des faire, et que Je la puisse avoir aussi tost que ung autre, et J'en seay a tousjours mais tenu ... car vous estes le seigneur qui vive en monde a qui Je suis plus tenu et a qui Jay greigno' service, et que elle me soit confe[rmé?] par le Roy nostre seigneur tellement que Je ny puisse avoir empeschement. Et je vous promet que Je vous paieray loyalment es termes qui seront assignes sans aucune faulte, et se faulte y avez per moy que le marchie ne fust nul, et sur paine de perdre s ... que Jen avoie paié. Et sy est ce grant chose pour le present de deux mille Francs attendans la guerre qui est a present ou ... a l'occasion de la prinse et perte de la place de Grantville. Car se remede ny est mis de brief tout le bailliage de Costentin est en voie destre destruit, et estre comme le pais de Caulx, que Dieu ne vueille. Car se seroit grant dommaige et grant pitie. Et pour ceste cause Jenvoie Jehan Dotton devers vous, qui est vostre serviteur, porteur de ces presentes, auquel Jay donné pouvoir et puissance den composer et appointier avecque vous ainsi quil vous plaira, et que regarderez quil sera bon a faire, tout aussi comme se Je y estoie present, et lequel vous parlera plus a plain de lestate et gouvernement de vostre ditte seigneurie de Piron et comme elle a esté gouvernée. Et pour ce que autrefois Je vous avoie rescript de vostre terre et seigneurie de Beaumont, que Jeusse volentiers eue se ceust esté vostre plaisir et volenté, pour ce que ma terre d'Asineres est parmys la vostre et joingnent ensemble, Et en cas que se ne seroit vostre plaisir que Jeusse vostre ditte seigneurie de Piron, jentend' encores volentiers a icelle de Beaumont, et quil vous pleust la mettre a prix de raison, car Je ne scay pas bien que elle peult valloir, mes vous le savez bien, car vous en avez fait fe presn(?) et en avez eu la desclaracion, non obstant que les terres depar de cha sy sen vont en tres grant diminucion pour la cause dessus dict. Sy vous plaise de vostre grace a y avoir sur le tout advis, et den faire tant que Jen puisse estre tous jours vostre petit et humble serviteur, et comme Jay tousjours esté et seray tant que je vivray. Et se il vous plaist faire quelque appointe des choses dessus dictes, quil vous plaise a le faire vous mesmes, et que ne menvoiez a Raouen ne ailleurs, car les chemins sont trop dangereux, et ne voudroie pas aler a Rouen voulentiers pour gaignier deux cens frans. Mon treshonnouré et redoubté seigneur, Je me recommande a vous tant humblement comme Je puis et comme vostre petit et humble serviteur, et se il est chose que faire puisse pour vous, mandez le moy et Je l'acompliray de tout mon cuer et volentiers, en priant le Saint Esprit qu'il soit garde de vous et vous donne bonne vie et longue et acomplisse(ment) de vous nobles desirs. Escript a la Haie du Puis, le derrain jour dé May. {lviii}

Mon treshonnouré et redoubté seigneur, Je vous recommande ma fille qui est demour' veufue, et quil vous plaist qelle soit (en) vostre bonne grace et service, et la conseiller et conforter en tous ses afaires.

Letout vostre humble serviteur Jhon 'Appulton, cap(itaine)

du Pont donne et de la Haie du Puis.

(Directed on the back,)

A mon treshonnouré et tresredoubté sire

Messire Jehan Fastouf, chevalier,

seigneur de Piron et de Beaumont

en Normendie.


From the Bailiffs of Winchester.[83]

Right Worshipfulle Sire,—We recommande ws unto you, latyng you wete of howre taryng that we brynge nat hoppe (up) howre money for howre ferme ys for be cawse that we wholde receyve of howre dewte of the Cete, and of the awnage sum of xiij. li.; the wheche money we cannat receyve in to the time that we have a wrette to the mayre and to ws Ballys, for the Cete scholde have of the awnage as Easter terme xx. marcs, for that the Cete grant(ed) us to howre eryste ferme, and here a pon we tryst; and now the fermeris of the awnage sey it pleynli that the Cete schale nat have a peny in to Mighelmas terme but zyffe so be that ye sende us a wrytt that we mowe brynge the fermers in to the Cheker, and ther to pay ws thys xx. marcs, for we lacke no money but that, for the fermers makit hyrr a skowsce apon the refuson that was thys tyme thre zere, for they fere laste they schold pay agen, and there for they sey it they whole nat pay us no peni but in the Cheker, also howre Mayre takyt no hede of ws, nother howe whe schal be servyd of the mony, theirefore we pray you sende a wrett down to the Mayre and to ws for to brynge ho(ppe, i.e. up) howre ferme for the halfe zere, for dowt hyt nat ze schale be as wel payd of ws as zevr (ever) ye w(ere) of zeny men, for in trowyf we pay of howre money more than xiiij. li. No more, but God kepe you. I-wretyn at Wynchester the viij. day of May.

By the baillifes of Wynchester.

(To this letter no address is preserved.)



Page liv. De Regimine Principum.—Sir John Paston (temp. Edw. IV.) had a copy of this work, which formed part of a volume which he thus described in the catalogue of his library:—

"Md. my Boke of Knyghthode and the maner off makyng off knyghts, off justs, off tornaments, ffyghtyng in lystys, paces holden by soldiers and chalenges, statutes off weere, and de Regimine Principum." (Paston Letters, vol. iii p. 302.)

It is more fully described by William Ebesham, the scribe who had written the book, in his bill of accompt, which is also preserved in the same volume, p. 14:—

"Item as to the Grete Booke.
"First for wrytyng of the Coronacion and other tretys of Knyghthode in that quaire, which conteyneth a xiij. levis and more, ijd. a lefe ijs. ijd.
"Item for the Tretys of Werre in iiij. books, which conteyneth lx. levis, after ijd. a leaff xs.    
"Item for Othea pistill, which conteyneth xliij. levis vijs. ijd.
"Item for the Chalenges and the Acts of Armes, which is xxviijti. lefs iiijs. viijd.
"Item for de Regimine Principum, which conteyneth xlvti. leves, after a peny a leef, which is right wele worth iijs. ixd.
"Item for rubriesheyng of all the booke iijs. iiijd.

The "Treatise of Knighthood" here mentioned, may probably have resembled The Booke of the Ordre of Chyvalrye or Knyghthode printed by Caxton (see p. liv.); and the "Treatise of War" may have been a version of The Boke of Fayttes of Armes and of Chyvallrye, which Caxton also published from the Arbre de Batailes, &c. as before noticed in p. vi.

The "Othea pistill" was certainly the same book which passes under the name of Christine de Pisan, and which was printed at Paris by Philippe Pigouchet, in 4to, under the title of "Les cent Histoires de troye. Lepistre de Othea deesse de prudence enuoyee a lesperit cheualereux Hector de troye, auec cent hystoires." In every page of this book there is a Texte in French verse, and a Glose in prose, which agrees exactly with sir John Paston's description in his catalogue (where it appears as distinct from Ebesham's "Great Book,") in this entry,—"Item, a Book de Othea, text and glose, in quayers."


Page 15. Matheu Gournay de comitatu Somerset. This personage, whose name has been inserted by the second hand, was a very distinguished warrior in the French wars, and has been supposed to have been the model of the Knight in Chaucer's Canterbury {lx}Pilgrims. His epitaph at Stoke upon Hampden in Somersetshire, which has been preserved by Leland, describes him as "le noble et vaillant chivaler Maheu de Gurney, iadys seneschal de Landes et capitain du chastel Daques por nostre seignor le Roy en la duche de Guyene, qui en sa vie fu a la batail de Beaumarin, et ala apres a la siege Dalgezire sur les Sarazines, et auxi a les batailles de Lescluse, de Cressy, de Yngenesse, de Peyteres, de Nazara, Dozrey, et a plusiurs autres batailles et asseges, en les quex il gaina noblement graund los et honour per lespece de xxxxiiij et xvj ans, et morust le xxvj jour de Septembre, l'an nostre Seignor Jesu Christ Mccccvj, que de salme Dieux eit mercy. Amen." (See Records of the House of Gournay, by Daniel Gurney, esq. F.S.A. p. 681.)


Page 68. Sir John Fastolfe's victualling of the Bastille. This anecdote is illustrated by the following passage of one of sir John's books of accompt:—

"Item, in like wise is owing to the said Fastolfe for the keeping and victualling of the

Bastile of St. Anthony in Paris, as it appeareth by writing sufficient, and by the creditors

of sir John Tyrel knight, late treasurer of the King's house, remaining in the exchequer

of Westminster of record, the sum of           xlij li.

(Paston Letters, iii. 269.)


T H E B O K E O F N O B L E S S E.

[MS. Reg. 18 B. XXII.]

The Boke of Noblesse, compiled to the most hyghe and myghety prince Kynge Edward the iiijthe for the avauncyng and preferryng the comyn publique of the Royaumes of England and of Fraunce.

First, in the worship of the holy Trinite, bring to mynde to calle, in the begynnyng of every good work, for grace. And sithe this litille epistle is wrote and entitled to courage and comfort noble men in armes to be in perpetuite of remembraunce for here noble dedis, as right convenient is soo to bee. And as it is specified by auctorite of the noble cenatoure of Rome Kayus son, in these termes foloweng: "Hoc igitur summum est nobilitatis genus, posse majorum suorum egregia facta dicere, posse eorum beneficiis petere honores publicos, posse gloriam rei publicæ hereditario quodam jure vendicare, posse insuper sese eorum partes vocare, et clarissimas in suis vultibus ymagines ostendere. Quos enim appellat vulgus nisi quod nobilissimi parentes genuere."

De remedio casus Reipublicæ.

Here folowethe the evident Examples and the Resons of comfort for a reformacion to be had uppon the piteous complaintes and dolorous lamentacions made for the right grete outragious and most {2}grevous losse of the Royaume of Fraunce, Ducheeȝ of Normandie, of Gascoyne, and Guyen, and also the noble Counte of Mayne and the Erledom of Pontife. And for relevyng and geting ayen the said Reaume, dukedoms, [and earldoms,] undre correccion of amendement ben shewed the exortacions and mocions, be auctorite, example Anglorum nacio originem sumpsit ex nacione Trojanorum. Nota jo. quod lingua Britonum adhuc usitatur in Wallia et Cornibea, que lingua vocabatur corrupta Greca. of actis in armes, bothe by experience and otherwise purposid, meoved and declarid, to corage and comfort the hertis of [the] Englisshe nacion, havyng theire first originalle of the nacion of the noble auncient bloode of Troy more than Ml. yere before the birthe of Crist; in token and profe wherof the auncient langage of the Brutes bloode at this day remayneth[84] bothe in the Princedome of Walis and in the auncient provynce and Dukedom of Cornewale, whiche was at tho daies called corrupt Greke.

ijo. lingua Saxonum alias lingua Germanorum.
Dux Cerdicius applicuit in Britania tempore Regis Arthuri, et sic per favorem regis inhabitavit, et . . ex natione Grecorum.

And next after the mighty Saxons' bloode, otherwise called a provynce in Germayne, that the vaileaunt Duke Cerdicius arrived in this reaume, with whom[85] Arthur, king of the Breton bloode, made mighty werre, and suffred hym to inhabit here. And the Saxons, as it is writen in Berthilmew in his booke of Propreteis, also were decendid of the nacion of Grekis.

iijo. Lingua Danorum ex nacione Grecorum. Rex Danorum Knott conquestum fecit.

And next after came the feers manly Danysh nacion, also of Grekis bene descendid, that the gret justicer king Knowt this land subdued and the Saxons' bloode.

And sithen the noble Normannes, also of the Danys nacion, descendid be William Conquerour, of whome ye ben lyniallie descendid, subdued this lande.

And, last of alle, the victorius bloode of Angevyns, by mariage of that puissaunt Erle Geffry Plantagenet, the son and heire of Fouke king of Jherusalem, be mariage of Dame Maude, Emperes, soule doughter and heire to the king of grete renoune, Henry the first of Inglond, and into this day lineally descendid in most prowes.

And whiche said Englisshe nacion ben sore astonyed and dulled {3}for the repairing and wynnyng ayen, uppon a new conquest to be hadde for youre verray right and true title in the inheritaunce of the saide Reaume of Fraunce and the Duche of Normandie. Of whiche Duchie, we have in the yere of oure Lorde Ml.iiijcl., lost, as bethyn the space of xv monithes be put out wrongfullie, tho roughe subtile wirkingis conspired and wroughte be the Frenshe partie undre the umbre and coloure of trewis late taken betwyxt youre antecessoure king Harry the sext then named king, and youre grete adversarie of Fraunce Charles the vijthe.

And where as the saide piteous complaintes [and] dolorous lamentacions of youre verray true obeisaunt subjectis for lesing of the said countreis may not be tendrid ne herde, [they] many daies have had but litille comfort, nether the anguisshes, troubles, and divisions here late before in this reaume be cyvyle batailes to be had, may not prevaile them to the repairing and wynnyng of any soche manere outrageous losses to this Reaume, whiche hathe thoroughe sodein and variable chaunces of unstedfast fortune so be revaled and overthrow; the tyme of relief and comfort wolde not be despendid ne occupied so: namely with theym whiche that have necessite of relief and socoure of a grettir avauntage and a more profitable remedie for theire avauncement to a new conquest: or by a good tretie of a finalle peace for the recovere of the same: but to folow the counceile of the noble cenatoure of Rome Boicius in the second prose of his first booke of consolacion seieng Sed medicine (inquid) tempus est, quàm querele.

Therfor, alle ye lovyng liege men, bothe youre noble alliaunces and frendis, levithe suche idille lamentacions, put away thoughte and gret pensifnes of suche lamentable passions and besinesse, and put ye hem to foryetefulnesse. And doo not away the recordacion of actis and dedis in armes of so many famous and victorious Kingis, Princes, Dukis, Erles, Barounes, and noble Knightis, as of fulle many other worshipfulle men haunting armes, whiche as verray trew martirs and blissid souls have taken theire last ende by werre; {4}some woundid and taken prisonneres in so just a title and conquest uppon youre enheritaunce in Fraunce and Normandie, Gasquyn and Guyen; and also by the famous King and mighty Prince king Edward the thrid, first heriter to the said Royaume of Fraunce, and by Prince Edwarde his eldist son, and alle his noble bretherin, [who] pursued his title and righte be force of armes, as was of late tyme sithe the yere of Crist Ml.iiijcxv. done, and made a new conquest in conquering bothe the saide Reaume of Fraunce and Duche of Normaundie by the Prince of blissid memorie king Harry the vthe. Also be the eide of tho thre noble prynces his bretherne and be other of his puissant Dukes and lordis, being lieutenauntȝ for the werre in that parties, as it is notorily knowen thoroughe alle Cristen nacyons, to the gret renomme and[86] worship of this Reaume.

How every good man of [worshyp yn[87]] armes shulde in the werre be resembled to the condicion of a lion.

And therfor, in conclusion, every man in hym silf let the passions of dolours be turned and empressid into vyfnes of here spiritis, of egre courages, of manlinesse and feersnesse, after the condicion of the lion resembled in condicions unto; for as ire, egrenesse, and feersnesse is holden for a vertu in the lion, so in like manere the said condicions is taken for a vertue and renomme of worship to alle tho that haunten armes: that so usithe to be egre, feers uppon his advers partie, and not to be lamentable and sorroufulle after a wrong shewed unto theym. And thus withe coragious hertis putting forthe theire prowes in dedis of armes, so that alle worshipfulle men, whiche oughte to be stedfast and holde togider, may be of one intencion, wille, and comon assent to vapour, sprede out, according to the flour delice, and avaunce hem forthe be feernesse of strenght and power to the verray effect and dede ayenst the untrew reproches of oure auncien adversaries halding uppon the Frenshe partie, whiche of late tyme by unjust dissimilacions, undre the umbre {5}and coloure of trewis and abstinence of werre late hadde and sacred at the cite of Tairs the .xxviij. day of Maij, the yere of Crist of Ml.iiijcxliiijto. have by intrusion of soche subtile dissimilacion wonne uppon us bethyn v yeres next foloweng withyn the tyme of [the last[88]] trieux the said Reaume and duchees, so that in the meane tyme and sethe contynued forthe the saide trewes from yere to yere, to this land grete charge and cost, till they had conspired and wrought theire avauntage, as it approvethe dailie of experience. And under this they bring assailours uppon this lande and begynneris of the trewis breking.

How the Frenshe partie began firste to offende and brake the Trewis.

Tempore Regis H. vjth.

First by taking of youre shippis and marchaundises upon the see, keping men of noble birthe undre youre predecessoure obedience and divers other true lieges men prisoneris under arest, as that noble and trew knight ser Gilis the Duke is son of Bretaine, whiche for his grete trouthe and love he hadde to this youre Royaume warde, ayenst all manhode ungoodely entretid, died in prison. And also before the taking of Fugiers ser Simon Morhier knight, the provost of Paris, a lorde also of youre partie and chief of the Kingis counceile, take prisoner by Deepe and paieng a grete raunson or he was deliverid. And sone after one Mauncelle a squier, comyng fro Rone, with .xx. parsones in his company, to Deepe, pesibly in the monythe of Januarij next before the taking of Fugiers, were in Deepe taken prisoneris wrongfullie undre the umbre of trewis. And sithen the lord Faucomberge take prisoner by subtile undew meanys of a cautel taken under safconduct of youre adversarie at Pountelarge the xv day of Maij, the yere of Crist Ml.iiijcxlix. And also the said forteresse of Pountlarge take the said day be right undew meanys taken uppon the said lorde Faucomberge contrarie to the said trewis, {6}forging here colourable matieris in so detestable unjust quarellis. For reformacion of whiche gret injuries conspired, shewed, and doone, alle ye put to youre handis to this paast and matier. Comythe therfor and approchen bothe kyn, affinitees, frendis, subgectis, allies, and alle wellewilleris. Now at erst the irnesse be brennyng hote in the fire thoroughe goode courage, the worke is overmoche kindelid and begonne, thoroughe oure dulnesse and sleuthe slommering many day, for be the sheding of the bloode of good cristen people as hathe be done in youre predecessours conquest that now is lost: is said be the wordis of Job: Criethe and bewailethe in the feelde, frendis and kyn, take heede pitously to your bloode.

A question of grete charge and wighte,[89] meoved first to be determyned, whethir for to make werre uppon Cristen bloode is laufulle.

But first ther wolde be meoved a question, whiche dame Cristyn makithe mencion of in the seconde chapitre of the Tree of Batailles: whethir that werres and batailes meintenyng and using ben laufulle according to justice or no. And the oppinion of many one wolde undrestond that haunting of armes and werre making is not lefull, ne just thing, for asmoche in haunting and using of werre be many infinite[90] damages and extorsions done, as mourdre, slaugheter, bloode-sheding, depopulacion of contrees, castelles, citees, and townes brennyng, and many suche infinite damages. Wherfor it shulde seme that[91] meintenyng of werre is a cursid deede: not dew to be meyntened. As to this question it[92] may be answerd that entrepruises and werris taken and founded uppon a just cause and a trew title is suffred of God, for dame Cristen seiethe and moevithe, in the first booke of the Arbre of Bataile, how it is for to have in consideracion why that princes shuld maynteyne werre and use bataile; and the saide dame Cristin saiethe v. causes principalle: thre of them {7}1: pa bene of righte: and the other tweyne of vallente. The first cause 2: ijda is to susteyne right and justice; the second is to withestande alle soche mysdoers the whiche wolde do foule[93] greif and oppresse the peple of the contre that the kyng or prince is gouvernoure of; the 3: iijd thrid is for to recuver landes, seignories and goodes [that] be other unrightfully ravisshed, taken away be force, or usurped, whiche shulde apperteine to the kyng and prince of the same seignorie, or ellis to whome his subgettys shuld apparteine [and] be meinteined under. And the other tweyne be but of violence, as for to be venged for dammage or griefe done by another; the othir to conquere straunge countrees bethout[94] any title of righte, as king Alexandre conquerid uppon the Romayne: whiche tweine last causes, though[95] the conquest or victorie by violence or by roialle power sownethe worshipfulle in dede of armes, yet ther ought no cristen prince use them. And yet in the first thre causes, before a prince to take an entreprise, it most be done be a just cause, and havyng righte gret deliberacion, by the conduyt and counceile of the most sage approuved men of a reaume or countre that the prince is of: and so for to use it in a just quarelle as[96] the righte execution of justice requirithe, whiche is one of the principalle iiij. cardinall virtues. And if that using of armes and haunting of werre be doone rather for magnificence, pride, and wilfulnesse, to destroie Roiaumes and countreis by roialle gret power, as whan tho that wolde avenge have noo title, but sey Vive le plus fort, [that] is to sey, Let the grettest maistrie have the feelde,—

[In this place the following insertion is made by a second hand in the margin:]

Lyke as when the duc off Burgoyn by cyvyle bataylle by maisterdom expelled the duc of Orlyance partie and hys frendis owt of Parys cytee the yere of Christ Ml.iiijcxij, and slow many thowsands and[97] hondredes bethout title of justice, but to revenge a synguler querel betwen both prynces for the dethe of the duc off Orlyans, {8}slayn yn the vigille of Seynt Clement by Raulyn Actovyle of Normandie, yn the yeer of Crist Ml.iiijcvijo. And the bataylle of Seynt-clow besyde Parys, by the duc of Burgoyn with help of capteyns of England owt of England, waged by the seyd duc, was myghtly foughten and had the fielde ayenste theyr adverse partye. Albeyt the duc of Orlyance waged another armee sone aftyr owt of England to relyeve the ovyrthrow he had at Seyntclowe. And the dyvysyon betwene the duc of Orlyance and the duc of Burgoyn dured yn Fraunce continuelly by .xj. yeerday, as to the yeere of Crist Mliiijcxviij, yn wyche yeere Phelip duc of Burgoyn, a greet frende to the land, was pyteousely slayn at Motreaw, and the cyte of Parys ayen taken by the Burgonons; lord Lyseladam pryncipalle capteyn and the erle of Armonak conestable sleyn by the comyns the seyd yere. (End of the insertion.)

in soche undew enterprises theire can be thought no grettir tiranny, extorcion, ne cruelte [by dyvysyons[98]].

How seint Lowes exorted and counceiled his sonne to moeve no werre ayenst Cristen peple.

Seynt Lowys. 1270.

And the blissid king of Fraunce seint Lowes exhortid and comaunded in his testament writen of his owne hand, that he made the tyme of his passing of this worlde the year of Crist Ml.cclxx to his sonne Philip that reigned after hym, that he shulde kepe hym welle, to meove no werre ayenst no christen man, but if he had grevously done ayenst him. And if he seke waies of peace, of grace and mercie, thou oughtest pardon hym, and take soche amendis of hym as God may be pleasid. But as for this blessid kingis counceile, it is notorily and openly knowen thoroughe alle Cristen Royaumes that oure[99] adverse party hathe meoved [and] excited werre and batailes bothe by lond and see ayenst this noble Royaume bethout any justice [or] title, and bethout waies of pease shewed; and as forto {9}defende them assailours uppon youre true title may be bethout note of tiranye, to put yow in youre devoire to conquere youre rightfulle enheritaunce, without that a bettir moyene be had.

A exortacion of a courageous disposicion for a reformation of a wrong done.


O then, ye worshipfulle men of the Englisshe nacion, which bene descendid of the noble Brutis bloode of Troy, suffre ye not than youre highe auncien couragis to be revalid ne desceived by youre said adversaries of Fraunce at this tyme, neither in tyme to come; ne in this maner to be rebuked and put abak, to youre uttermost deshonoure and reproche in the sighte of straunge nacions, without that it may be in goodely hast remedied [as youre hyghnesse now entendyth,[100]] whiche ye have be conquerours of, as ye[101] to be yolden and overcomen, in deffaute of goode and hasty remedie, thoroughe lak of provision of men of armes, tresour, and finaunce of suffisaunt nombre of goodes, in season and tyme convenable to wage and reliefe them. For were ye not sometyme tho that thoroughe youre gret [prowesse,[102]] corages, feersnes, manlinesse, and of strenght overleid and put in subgeccion the gret myghte and power of the feers and puissaunt figheters of alle straunge nacions that presumed to set ayenst this lande?

How many worthi kinges of this lande have made gret conquestis in ferre contrees in the Holy Lande, and also for the defence and right of this lande, and for the duche of Normandie.


And for an example and witnes of King Arthur, whiche discomfit and sleine was undre his banere the Emperoure of Rome in bataile, and conquerid the gret part of the regions be west of Rome. And many othre conquestis hathe be made before the daies of the said {10}Brenus. Arthur be many worthi kinges of this roiaume, as Brenus, king Belynus' brother, a puissaunt chosen duke, that was before the Incarnacion, wanne and conquerid to Rome, except the capitoile of Rome. And sithen of other victorious kinges and princes, Edmondus Ironside. as Edmonde Irensede had many gret batailes [and] desconfited the Danes to safe Englond. And what victorious dedis Willelmus Conquestor. William Conqueroure did gret actis in bataile uppon the Frenshe partie [many conquestys [103]]. And also his son [kyng[103]] Henricus primus fundator plurimorum castrorum. Harry after hym defendid Normandie, bilded and fortified many a strong castelle in his londe, to defende his dukedom ayenst the Frenshe partie. And how victoriouslie his brother Robertus frater Henrici primi, electus Rex de Jherusalem, sed renuit. Roberd did armes uppon the conquest of the holy londe, that for his gret prowesse there was elect to be king of Jherusalem, and refusid it for a singuler covetice to be duke of Normandie, returned home, and never had grace of victorie after. And to bring to mynde how the noble worriour Fulco comes de Angeu, Rex Jerusalem. Fouke erle of Angew, father to Geffrey Plantagenet youre noble auncetour, left his erledom to his sonne, and made werre upon the Sarasynes in the holy land, and for his noble dedis was made king of 1131. Jherusalem, anno Christi Ml.cxxxi. As how king De Ricardo Rege primo in terra sancta. Richarde the first, clepid Cuer de lion, whiche in a croiserie went in to the holy londe, and Baldewyne Archiepiscopus Cant', Robertus Clare comes Glouc', comes Cestr'. archebisshop of Caunterburie, Hubert bisshop of Salisburie, Randolfe the erle of Chestre, Robert Clare erle of Gloucestre, and werreied uppon the hethen paynemys in the company of Philippus Rex Francie, vocatus Deo datus, in terra sancta. king Philip Dieu-donné of Fraunce, whiche king Richard conquerid and wanne by roiall power uppon the Sarrasyns in the yere of Crist Ml.c.iiijxxvijo. and toke the King of Cipres and many other gret prisonneris. Also put the londe of Surie in subjeccion, the isle of Cipres, and the gret cite of Damask wanne be assaut, slow the king of Spayne clepid Ferranus. And the said king Richard kept and defendid frome his adversarie Philip Dieu-donné king of Fraunce, be mighty werre made to hym, the duchees of Normandie, Gascoigne, Gyen, the counteeȝ of Anjou and Mayne, Tourayne, {11}Pontyve, Auverne, and Champaigne, of alle whiche he was king, duke, erle, and lorde as his enheritaunce, and as his predecessours Edwardus Rex primus. before hym did. Also in like wise king Edward first after the Conquest, being Prince, in about the yere of Crist Ml.ijc.lxx, put hym in gret laboure and aventure amonges the Sarrasins in the countye of Aufrik, was at the conquest of the gret cite of the roiaume of Sanctus Lodowicus rex Francorum obiit in viagio antequam pervenit ad terram sanctam. Thunes. [Yn whiche cuntree that tyme and yeere seynt Lowys kyng of Fraunce dyed, and the croyserye grete revaled by hys trespasseinte, had not the seyd prince Edward ys armee be redye there to performe that holy voyage to Jerusalem, as he dyd wyth many noble lordes off England.[104]] Also fulle noblie ententid about the defence and saufegarde of the gret cite of Acres in the londe of Sirie, that had be lost and yolden to the Sarrazins had not [hys armee and[104]] his power bee, and by an hole yere osteyng and abiding there in tyme of gret pestilence and mortalite reigning there, and by whiche his peple were gretly wastid, where he was be treason of a untrew messaunger Sarrasin wounded hym in his chambre almost to dethe, that the souldone of Babiloyne had waged hym to doo it, becaus of sharpe and cruelle werre the seide Edwarde made uppon the Sarrasines, of gret fere and doubte he had of the said prince Edward and of his power; whiche processe ye may more groundly see in the actis of the said prince Edwarde is laboure. And his father king Harry thrid decesid while his son was in the holy londe warring uppon the Sarasines. And how worshipfullie Ricardus Imperator Alemannie et comes Cornewayle. Richard emperoure of Almaine and brother to the said king Henry did gret actis of armes in the holy londe uppon the Sarasynes and Edwardus primus rex. in the yere of Crist Ml.ijc.xl. And overmore the said king Edwarde first kept under subjeccion bothe Irelond, Walis, and Scotlond, whiche were rebellis and wilde peple of condicion. And also protectid and defendid the duchees of Gascoigne and Guyen, his rightefull enheritaunce.


How King Edward [the] thrid had the victorie at the bataile of Scluse, and gate Cane by assaute, and havyng the victorie at the batelle of Cressye [and wanne Calix by sege.[105]]

T. Regis E. iijcii et ejus filiorum.

And sithen, over that, how that the most noble famous knighte of renomme, king Edwarde the thrid, the whiche, with his roialle power, the yere of Christ Ml.ccc.xl. wanne [the day of seynt John baptiste[105]] the gret bataile uppon the see at Scluse ayenst Philip de Valoys callyng hym the Frenshe King and his power, and alle his gret navye of shippis destroied, to the nombre of .xxv.Ml. men and CCxxxti. shippis and barges. And also after that, in the yere of Crist Ml.iijc.xlvj. the said king Philip purposid to have entred into Englond and had waged a gret noumbre of Genues shippis and other navyes. And the said king Edward thrid thought rather to werre withe hym in that countre rather: tooke his vyage to Cane withe xijc. shippis, passed into Normandie by the Hagge,[106] wynnyng the contrees of Constantine [from Chyrburgh[105]] tylle he came to Cane, and by grete assautes entred and gate the towne, and fought withe the Comes de Ew captus. Comes Tankervyle captus. capitaine and burgeises fro midday till night; where the erle of Eu, connestable of Fraunce, the erle of Tancarville, and others knightes and squiers were take prisoneris: but the castelle and donjoune held still, where the bisshop of Baieux and othre kept hem; and than the king departid thens, for he wolde not lese his peple [by segyng yt.[105]] And after that the yere of Crist Ml.iijc.xlvj descomfit the said king Philip and wanne the feelde uppon hym at the dolorous Cressye. and gret bataile of Cressy in Picardie the .xxvj. day of August the said yere, where the king of Beame was slayne the son of Henry the Emperoure, and alle the gret part of the noble bloode of Fraunce of dukes, erlis, and barons, as the erle of Alaunson king of Fraunce is brother, the duke of Lorraine, the erle of Bloys, the erle of Flaundres, the erle of Harecourt, the erle of Sancerre, the erle of Fennes, to the nombre of .l. knightis sleyne, as well as to othre gret {13}nombre of his liege peple, as in the .39. chapitre of the Actis of the said King Philip more plainly is historied. And also the full noble Comes Derbye. erle of Darby, havyng rule under the said king Edwarde in the duchie of Guyen, hostied the said tyme and yere, and put in subjeccion fro the towne of saint Johan Evangelist unto the citee of Peyters, whiche he wanne also, be the said erle of Derbye is entreprises.

How David King of Scottis was take prisoner.

David Rex Scotorum captus est apud Doraham.

And in the said king Edward tyme David king of Scottis was take prisoner, as I have undrestond, at the bataile beside Deram upon the marchis of Scotlond.

And also the said king kept Bretaine in gret subjeccion, had the victorie uppon Charles de Bloys duke of Breteine, and leid a siege in Breteine to a strong forteresse clepid Roche daryon, and kept be his true subjectis. After many assautes and grete escarmisshes and a Karolus dux Britanniæ captus est per E. iijm. bataile manly foughten, the said duke was take, and havyng .vij. woundes was presentid to the said king Edward. And he also Calicia capta est eodem tempore per Edwardum iijm. wanne Calix after, by a long and puissaunt sieges keping[107] by see and be londe; and they enfamyned couthe have no socoure of king Calicia reddita est in manus Regis Edwardi iij. Philip, and so for faute of vitaile yeldid Calix up to king Edwarde the .iiij. day of August in the yere of Crist Ml.ccc.xlvij. And also put Normandie gret part of it in subgeccion. And therto in his daies his eldist sonne Edward prince of Walis the .xix. day of Septembre the yere of Crist Ml.iijc.lvj had a gret discomfiture afore the cite of Peyters uppon John calling hym King of Fraunce, where the said Edwardus princeps cepit Johannem vocantem se Regem Franciæ ao, d'ni Mocccolvjo. king was taken prisoner, and in whiche bataile was slaine the duke of Bourbon, the duke of Athenes, the lord Clermont, ser Geffrey Channy that bare the baner of the oriflamble, and also take withe king Johan ser Philip duc [le hardye[108]] of Bourgoine his yongist sonne, and for whois raunson and othres certaine lordes {14}Edwardus Rex Angliæ iijus retribuit Edwardo principi filio suo. king Edwarde rewarded the Prince sterlinges. Also Karolus filius Regis Johannis Fraunciæ ac nominando se pro duce Normandiæ captus est. taken that day ser Jaques de Bourbon erle of Pontieu [and] Charles his brother erle of Longville, the kingis cosins germains, ser John Meloun erle of Tancarvile, ser William Meleum archebisshop of Sens, the erle Dampmartyn, the erle Vendosme, the erle Vaudemont, the erle Salebruce, the erle Nanson, ser Arnolde of Doneham mareshalle of Fraunce, and many other knightis and gentiles to the nombre of Ml.vijc. prisonneris, of whiche were taken and sleine .lij. knightis banerettis. And the kingis eldist sonne Charlis calling hym duc of Normandie, the duc of Orliauns the kingis brother, the duc of Anjou, the erle of Peiters that after was clepid [Johan[109]] the duc of Berrie, the erle of Flaundris, withe a few other lordis, withdrewe hem and escapid from the seide bataile. And sone after, the Edwardus princeps navim ascendit cum Johanne nominando se pro rege Franciæ et applicuerunt prope Dover iiijo. die Maij, ao d'ni Ml. &c. yere of Crist Ml.iijc.lvij. the .xvj. day of Aprill the said prince Edward with king Johan tooke the see at Burdeux to Englond, and londed the .iiij. day of Maij and came to London the .xxiiij. day of Maij, the said king Edwarde his father meeting withe king Johan in the feelde, doing hym gret honoure and reverence. And after in the De redempcione Johannis dicentis [se] Regem Franciæ. yere of Crist Ml.iijc.lxvij the month of Maij the said king Johan was put to finaunce and raunson of thre millions of scutis of golde, that two of them be worth .j. noble, of whiche was paied sex hondred thousand scutis be the said king Johan comyng to Calix, and in certein yeris after was obliged under gret seurtees, as it is declared in the articulis of the pease finalle made betwene both kingis, to be paied 400,000 till the said thre hondred Ml crones[110] were fullie paied, whiche as it is said was not parfourmed. And, after that, the said prince Edwarde and Harry that noble duke of Lancastre had the De bello de Nazar. bataile of Nazar in Spaine withe king Peter ayenst the bastarde Henry callinge hym King of Spain, haveng lxiij Ml. fighting men in his host, and hym descomfit, voided the feelde, and many a noble knighte of Englonde and of Gascoigne and Guyen withe many othre worshipfulle gentiles quite hem righte manlie, and amongis {15}Chandos. many goode men of chevalrie ser John Chandos avaunced hym chief in that bataile [havyng the avauntgard[111]], for he had in his retenu Beauchamp comes. Ml.ijc penons armed and x.Ml. horsmen; and ser William Beauchampe D'n's Hastyngys. D'n's Nevyle. the erle of Warwik is sonne, lorde Hue Hastinges, lord Nevyle, D'n's Rays. lorde Rais a Breton lorde of Aubterré, withe many Gascoignes there Rad's Hastyngys ch'l'r. Tho's Felton. Robertus Knolles. also: ser Raufe Hastingis, ser Thomas Felton, ser Roberd Knolles, withe many other notable of the chevalrie of Inglonde, passed the streit high monteyns of Pirone by Runcyvale in the contre of Pampilon, going from the cite of Burdeux into Spaine, and ser Courteneyes. Tryvett. Matheu Gournay. Et quam plures alii milites hic nimis diu ad inscribendum. Bertl's Clekyn, locum tenens adversæ partis, captus est prisonarius. Hughe Courtney, ser Philip Courtnay, ser John Tryvet, [Matheu Gournay de comitatu Somerset[111]]. And there was take ser Barthilmew Clekyn the Frenshe kingis lieutenaunt for the werre prisoner, also the Mareshalle of Fraunce, the Besque, with many othre notable lordis. Whiche bataile of Nazar was in the yere of Crist Ml.iijc.lxvj. the thrid day of Aprille.

How King Henry the v. conquerid [Normandy and Fraunce[111]].

De Henrico quinto.

And sithe now late the noble prince[112] Henry the vte. how in his daies, withyn the space of .vij. yere and .xv. daies, thoroughe sieges lieng, Nota quomodo Rex Henricus Vte. obtinuit Harefleet. [[113] wan the towne of Harflete bethyn .xl. days, made Thomas Beauford then erle Dorset hys oncle capteyn of yt. And the seyd erle made ser John Fastolfe chevaler his lieutenaunt wyth soudeours, and the baron of Carew, wyth .xxxiij. knyghtys, contynuelly defended the seyd toune ayenst the myghty power of Fraunce by the space of one yere and half aftyr the seyd prince Herry. vte. departed from De extrema defensione ville Harflue contra potestatem Franciæ et de fame ibidem. Hareflue. And the seyd towne was beseged by the Frenshe partye by lond and also by see, wyth a grete navye of carekys, galeyes, and shyppis off Spayne, tille that yn the meene tyme Johan duc of Bedfor(d), the erle of Marche your moste noble antecessour, accompanyed wyth many other nobles, wyth a puissaunt armee of shypps, fought wyth the carrekys and shypps lyeng at Seyn hede before Hareflue, were {16}taken and many one sleyn and drowned; and so vyttailled Harflue yn grete famyn, that a wreched cowys hede was solde for vj s. viij d. sterling, and the tong for xl d., and dyed of Englysh soudeours mo then vc. yn defaut of sustenaunce. And the second voyage after wythynne the tyme before seyd Johan erle of Hontyndon was made cheif admyralle of a new armee to rescue Harflue, beseged of the new wyth a grete navy of shyppys and carekys of the Frenshe partye, [which] were foughten wyth and ovyrcom throw myghty fyghtyng; and of the new vitailled Hareflue, the seyd erle Dorset then beyng yn England at the Emperour comyng hedre, called Sygemondus. I briefly title thys incident to th'entent not to be foryete how suche tweyn myghety batailles were foughten uppon the see bethyn one yere and half, and how the seyd toune of Hareflue was deffended and kept ayenst the puyssaunt power of Fraunce beseged as yt were by the seyd tyme; and as for wache and ward yn the wynter nyghtys I herd the seyd ser Johan Fastolfe sey that every man kepyng the scout wache had a masty hound at a lyes, to berke and warne yff ony adverse partye were commyng to the dykes or to aproche the towne for to scale yt. And the seyd prince Herry vthe,[114]] albeit that it consumed gretlie his peple, and also by batailes yeveng, conquerid [the towne of Harflete[114]], and wanne bothe the saide Duchie of Normandie first and after the Roiaume of Fraunce, conquerid and broughte in subjeccion and wanne be his gret manhode, withe the noble power of his lordis and helpe of his comonys, and so overleid the myghtie roialle power of Fraunce be the seide sieges lieng, first in his first viage at Harflete, and in the second Nota, qualiter per civitates et mare obtinuit. viage he made manly besegid Cane, the cite of Rone, Falleise, Argenten, Maunt, Vernonsurseyne, Melun, Meulx, Enbrie, and at many other castellis, forteressis, citeis, and townes to long to rehers. Also Bellum supermare et leȝ carrikes. had gret batailes on the see ayenst many grete carekkis and gret shippes that beseiged Hareflue after it was Englisshe. And had a gret Nota de bello apud Agincourt. discomfiture at the bataile of Agincourt in the yere of Crist Ml.iiijcxv. {17}at his first viage, where many dukes, erlis, lordis, and knightis were slaine and take prisoneris that bene in remembraunce at this day of Henricus Rex duxit in uxorem filiam Regis Fraunciæ. men yet livyng. And after allied hym to the Frenshe king Charlis .vj.te is doughter, because of whiche alliaunce gret part of the roiaume of Fraunce were yolden unto hym his obeisaunce. And now also in the said noble conquest hathe be kepte undre the obediaunce of Englisshe nacion from the begynnyng of the said late conquest by .xxxv. yeris be continued and kept by roialle power, as first be the noble and famous prince Johan duke of Bedforde, regent and governoure of the roiaume of Fraunce by .xiij. yeris, with the eide and power of the noble lordis of this lande, bothe youre said royaume of Fraunce and duchie of Normandie was kept and the ennemies kept ferre of in gret subjeccion.

Joh'es dux Bedforde.

How that in Johan duke of Bedforde tyme be his lieutenaunt erle of Salisburie had the victorie at the batelle of Cravant.

In profe wherof how and in the first yere of the reigne of king Harry the sixt, at whiche tyme his seide uncle toke uppon hym the charge and the name of Regent of the roiaume of Fraunce, that had Bellum de Cravant. the victorie at the bateile of Cravant, where as at that tyme Thomas Thomas Montagu comes Sarum. Will's Pole comes Suff'. Montagu the noble erle of Salisburie, the erle of Suffolke, the Dominus Willughby. marchalle of Bourgoine, the lord Willoughebie, withe a gret power of Phelip the duke of Bourgoine is host, holding the partie of the said Johan regent of Fraunce, duc of Bedford, withe the eide and help of the trew subgettis of this lande, had the overhande of the ennemies assembled to the nombre of .ix. Ml. Frenshemen and Scottis at the said bataile of Cravant in the duchie of Bourgoine, where there were slayne of the ennemies to the nombre of .iiij. Ml., beside .ij. Ml. prisonneris take, of whiche gret part of them were Scottis, the erle Bougham being chief capitein over them;[115] which late before were the cause of the male-infortuned journey at Bougée, where the famous {18}and victorious knight Thomas duc of Claraunce, youre nere cousyn, Vindicatio mortis ducis Clarenciæ. for the right of Fraunce, withe a smale company of his side, withe the Scottis to a grete nombre there assembled among hem in the feelde, was slayn, withe many a noble lorde, baron, knightis, squyers of Englond, that never so gret an overthrow of lordes and noble bloode was seene in no mannys daies as it was then. Aboute the nombre of .ijc. l. cote-armes slaine and take prisoneris as yt was seyd, be the saide Scottis holding withe youre adverse party of Fraunce, whiche God of his infinite goodenes sone after at the saide batelle [of] Cravant, and after at the bateile of Vernell, was sent a Secunda vice punicio mortis ducis Clarenciæ. chastisement upon the saide Scottis for theire cruelltie vengeable and mortelle dethe of the said victorious prince, duke of Claraunce, and of other of his noble lordis and knightis.

How Johan duke of Bedforde had yn his owne parsone the batelle of Vernelle.

Batelle of Cravant.

Also in the said daies, sone after the saide batelle of Cravant, in the yere of Crist Ml.iiijc.xxiij., the .iij. yere of King Harry the sext, the .xvij. day of August, the said Johan duke of Bedford had a gret discomfiture and the victorie upon your adversaries of Fraunce and of Batelle of Vernoyle. 1424. Scottis at the batelle of Vernelle in Perche, where as Johan cleping hym duc of Alaunson, lieutenaunt for the Frenshe partie, was take prisoner that day, and the said erle Bougham of Scotlonde, marchalle of Fraunce, whiche was cause of that noble prince Thomas duke of Claraunce dethe, was in the said bataile overthrow and sleyne, and the erle Douglas made duc of Tourayne, aswelle as his sonne and heire that was in the feelde at Shrewisburie ayenst king Henry the .iiijthe, and another tyme being ayenst the said Johan duc of Bedford at Homeldonhille in Scotlond, was also slaine at the said batelle, withe many other grete lordis of the Frenshe partie slayne and taken prisoneris at the said bataile. {19}

How that the grettir part of the counte of Mayne, the cite of Mauns, withe many other castellis, were yolden.


And, overmore, not long after, youre auncien enheritaunce in the counté of Mayne, the cite of Maunce, conquerid and brought be the said regent duc of Bedforde, withe the power of his lordis and helpers, in subgeccion, [by the erle of Salysbery, lord Scalys, ser John Fastalf, ser John Popham, ser N. Mongomery, ser Wylliam Oldhalle, chevalers, and many othyr noble men of worshyppe.[116]] And whiche counté of Mayne was accustomed sithen to be in value yerely to the eide and helpe of the werres of Fraunce, and to the releve of the kyng ys subgettis obeisauntes lyvyng uppon the werre for the furtheraunce of that conquest, .x. Ml. li. sterlinges. Also the said regent of Fraunce, with the power of youre noble bloode and lordes, wanne the feeld at the forseid grete bataile of Vernelle in Perche ayenst the power of the Frenshe adverse party of Fraunce, being assembled to the nombre of .xl. Ml. fighters of the Frenshe partie; and Redempcio Joh'is dicentis [se] ducem de Allunson pro .clx. Ml. salux bene solutis ultra alia onera suarum expensarum. there Johan cleping hymsilf duke of Alaunson, lieutenaunt to Charles the .vij. calling hym Frenshe king, taken prisonner, withe many other lordis, barons, and knightes, and noble men of worship, whiche paied to the said regent duc of Bedforde for his raunson and finaunce allone .clx. M. salux, beside his other grete costis and charges, whiche was a gret relief and socoure to the eide of the conquest, whiche bataile was in the yere of Crist Ml.iiijc.xxiiij., the seyd .iijd. yere of the reigne of king Henry sext.

Nota bene pro titulo Regis Henrici sexti.

How that Henry the sext was crouned king be the might of grete lordes.

Coronatio Regis Henrici sexti.

And he also, for a gret act of remembraunce to be had in writing, was crouned king of Fraunce in the noble citee of Paris, in the yere of Crist Ml.iiijc.xxix., the .ix. yere of his reigne, withe right gret solennyte amongis the lordis spirituelle and temporelle, and be the gret mighte and power, as well in goodes and richesse, of his graunt {20}oncle Henry cardinalle of Englande, byshop of Wynchester, and by the gret mighte and power of his uncle Johan regent of the roiaum of Fraunce, duc of Bedforde, being present at that tyme to their grettist charge and cost to resist theire gret adversarie of Fraunce calling hym Dolphin. For sethen the roiaume of Englonde first began to be inhabite withe peple was never so worshipfulle an act of entreprise De magna fama regni Angliæ tempore regis Hen. vith done in suche a case, the renoume of which coronacion spradde thoroughe alle cristen kingis roiaumes.

A courageous recomfortyng.

O then ye most noble and cristen prince, for notwithestanding gret conquestis and batailes had in the said roiaume be the famous knight king Edwarde the thrid, he never atteyned to that souvraine honoure but by valiauntnes of Englishe men, whiche have in prowes avaunced hem, and governed so nobly as is before briefly historied and specified, be youre saide noble, puissaunt, and vailaunt progenitours in divers regions, and inespecialle in Fraunce and Normandie, and in the duchie of Gascoigne and Guyen, that this sodenly wern put oute of by usurpacion ayenst alle trouthe and Exortacio militaris. knyghthode. Now therfore, in repairing this undew intrusion uppon yow, mantelle, fortifie, and make yow strong ayenst the power of youre said adversaries of Fraunce. For now it is tyme to clothe you in armoure of defense ayenst youre ennemies, withe the cotes of armes of youre auncien feernesse, haveng in remembraunce the victorious conquestis of youre noble predecessours, the whiche clothing many histories, cronicles, and writinges witnessithe moo than myn simple entendement can not suffice to reherse in this brief epistle.

Of the noblesse of Ectour and other mighty kinges of Grece.

Nota de exemplis aliorum nobilium.

And also let be brought to mynde to folow the steppis in conceitis of noble courage of the mighty dedis in armes of the vaillaunt knight Hector of Troy, whiche bene enacted in the siege of Troy for a perpetuelle remembraunce of chevalrie [that your noblesse ys Agamemnon. decended of[117]]. Also of the dedis in armes of Agamemnon the {21}puissaunt king of Greece, that thoroughe cruell and egre werre ayenst the Trojens bethin .x. yere day conquerid the gret cite of Ulixes. Troie. In like wise of the famous knight Ulixes, that alle his daies dispendid in marciall causis. And of the .xij. puissaunt entreprinses Hercules. and aventurous dedis that Hercules, as it is figured and made mencion in the vijthe metre of the .v. booke of Boecius, toke uppon hym, putting himself frome voluptuouse delites and lustis, being subget to grete laboure, wynnyng renomme and worship; whiche .xij. entreprinses of Hercules, albeit it be thought [but a poesye[118]] impossible to any mortalle man to doo or take uppon hym, as for to 1. j. 2. ij. 3. iij. bereffe the skyn of the rampant lion, wrestlid withe Antheus and Poliphemus, the gret giauntes, and hym overthrew, he slow the serpent clepit Ydra, made tame the proude beestis clepid Centaurus, that be of halfe man and halfe best, and many soche wonderfulle entreprises as is wreten that Hercules did, whiche is writen in figure of a poesy for to courage and comfort alle othre noble men of birthe to be victorious in entreprinses of armes. And how, in conclusion, that there is no power, puissaunce, ne strenght, who so lust manly [wyth prudens[118]] put forthe hymsilf may resist and withestande ayenst such gret entreprises.

How a conquerour shulde use in especialle thre thinges.

A conqueroure shuld use iij thinges.

And, as Vegecius in his booke of Chevalrie counceilithe that a conquerour shulde use thre thinges in especialle whiche the Romains used, and alle that tyme they had the victorie of here ennemies, that is to wete, The first was science, that is forto undrestonde prudence, to seene before the remedies of bonchief, or the contrarie; The j. second was exercitacion and usage in dedis of armes, that they might be apte and redie to bataille whan necessite fille; the thrid ij. was naturalle love that a prince shulde have to his peple, as doing his trew diligence to doo that may be to the comon wele of his peple, whiche is to be undrestonde in the executing of justice egallie. And for to kepe them in tranquillite and pece within hemsilfe.


Menne of noblenesse shuld lefe sensualites and delites.

How men of noblesse ought lefe sensualitees and delites.

Let it no lenger be suffred to abide rote, no forto use the pouder and semblaunce of sensualite and idille delites, for Water Malexander seiethe, that voluptuous delitis led be sensualite be contrarie to the exercising and haunting of armes. Wherfor, like and after the example of the boore whiche knowethe not his power, but foryetithe his strenghte tille he be chafed and see his owne bloode, in like wise put forthe youre silf, avaunsing youre corageous hertis to werre, and late youre strenght be revyved and waked ayen, furious, egre, and rampanyng as liouns ayenst alle tho nacions that soo without title of right wolde put you frome youre said rightfulle enheritaunce. And where is a more holier, parfiter, or a juster thing than in youre adversary is offence and wrong-doing to make hym werre in youre rightfull title, where as none other moenys of pease can be hadde. And therfore considering be this brief declaracion that youre right and title in alle this royaumes and contrees is so opyn—

Mentio brevis de titulo ducatus Normandiæ.

Here is briefly made mencion of the first title of Normandie, and how frely it holdithe.

Nota pro titulo ducatus Normanniæ.

For as youre first auncien right and title in youre duchie of Normandie, it is knowen thoroughe alle cristen landes, and also of highe recorde by many credible bookis of olde cronicles and histories, that William Conqueroure descendid frome duc Rollo, after cristned and called Roberd, that came out of Dennemarke aboute the yere of Crist .ixc.xij., was righte duke of Normandie by yeft of Charlys the symple, king of Fraunce, [who] maried his doughter to Rollo and gave Richardus dux Normandiæ cepit in bello Lodovicum regem Franciæ, qui resingnavit totum titulum Ricardo de ducatu predicto. hym the saide ducdome. And after Richarde due of Normandie, in the yere of Crist .ixc.xlv. in plaine batelle before the cite of Rone toke Lowes king of Fraunce prisoner, and the said Lowes relesid the seide dukedom to the said Richarde and to alle his successours to holde frely in souvereinte and resort of none creature but of God, as in act therof is made mencion that was sene and rad uppon this writing. {23}And after the said William Conquerour being king of Englond, of whome ye and youre noble progenitours bene descendid and entitled ccccc.thxxx.vte. Arma ducatus illius. this .vc.xxxv. yere, and beere in armes by the saide duchie of Normandie in a feelde of gulis .ij. libardis of golde.

Nota de tempore quo Rex Angliæ intitulatus ducatui de Angew et comitatui Mayne.

How long the king is entitled to the righte enheritaunce of Angew and Mayne.

And that as for youre next enheritaunce that fille to youre seide progenitoures and to you in the duchie of Anjou and countee of Mayne and Tourayne, it is also notorily knowen among alle cristen Matildis filia et heres Henrici primi copulata fuit imperatori, et quo mortuo copulata fuit Galfrido Plantagenet, et ex ea Henricus .ij. natus est. princes and be parfit writing how that dame Maude, whiche was doughter and soule heire to that puissaunt king Henry the first, that after she weddid was to the emperoure of Almayne; after his decese the saide Maude emperesse was maried the yere of Crist 1127. .Ml.cxxvij. to Geffry Plantagenest son to Fouke king of Jherusalem, that was erle of Anjou, of Mayne, and Toreyne, by whome the saide Maude had issue that most famous king in renome Henry the seconde, whiche be right of his moder Maude was right king and enheritoure Angew. Nota, pro titulo ducat' Andegav'. of Englonde, also duke of Normandie seisid. And be right of his foresaide father Geffrey Plantagenet was bethout any clayme or interupcion right enheritour and seisid of the said countee of Anjou, Mayne, Toreyne continued this .iijc.xlvij. yer. [And the noble actys of the seyd erles of Angew wyth her lynealle dessentys ben wryten yn the cronicles called Ymago historiarum that maister Raffe de Diceto dene of Poulys yn seynt Thomas Canterbery days wrote notablye. And therfore the armys of the noble erlys that for her prowesse were chosen king of Jerusalem wold be worshypped, because yowr hyghnes ys descended of the eyr masle, that ys to wete of Geffry Plantagenest erle of Angew, and the countee of Mayne by maryage was unyoned to the erledom of Angew to longe to wryte.[119]]



Here is made mencion of the title of Gascoigne and Guien, and how long agoo passed possessid.

Nota, pro titulo Vasconiæ.

And than for to be put in remembraunce of youre auncien enheritaunce, verray right and title in youre duchies of Gascoigne and Guien, withe the countrees, baronnyees and seignouries therto belonging. It is in like fourme knowen of highe recorde, enacted in divers cronicles, as amongis many other historialle bookis of Ml.cxxxvij. auctorite, that aboute the yere of Crist .Ml.cxxxvij. William the duke of Guien died bethout heire masle, uppon his voiage he made to seint Alienora et Aliciæ filiæ et heredes Will'mi ducis Guion. James, havyng .ij. doughters and heires, called Alienore, the second Alice, and king Lowes of Fraunce in his yong age, by the agrement of Lowys le gros his father, spoused the said Alienor, to whome the said duchie was hole enheriter. And after the said king Lowes came to yeris of discretion, the archebisshoppis of Sens, of Rayns, of Rone, and of Burdeux, withe others barouns, made relacion to the Nota, divortio facta inter regem Franciæ et Alienoram. said king Lowes that the saide Alienor was so neere of his blode that he might not laufullie be the chirche kepe her to wiffe, so be theire counceile they bothe were departed laufully, and the said king Lowes maried after that Constance the king of Spayne doughter. And the said Alienor the duches of Gascoigne and Guien went to Burdeux. Henricus ijd' Angliæ rex superduxit Alienoram filiam et heredem Willielmi ducis de Guien circa M.cxlvjad Than came the forsaid king Harry the seconde of Englande, that was the Erle of Anjou is sonne and heire, and wedded the said Alienor about the yere of Crist Ml.cxlvj. by whome he was duke of Gascoigne and Guien, and his heires after hym, of whom ye bene descended and come right downe. And the said king Henry the seconde bare in armes frome that day forthe the saide libarde of golde withe the other two libardis of the same that is borne for Duke of Normandie. So in conclusion he was, be right of his moder dame Nota pro titulo Henrici ij. Maude, the empresse, king of Englonde and duke of Normandie, and, be right of his father Geffry Plantagenest, erle of Anjou and of Mayne and Torayne; be right of his wiffe dame Alienor, duke of Guien; of whiche duchie of Gascoigne and Guien your noble {25}Nota bene, Karolus vij rex Fraunciæ primo intrusionem fecit in ducatum Normanniæ, Gascon, Guion, etc. circa annum Mliiijclj. progenitours have continually be possessid and seased of, this .iijc.xxviij. yere complete, tille that by intrusion of youre said adversarie Charlis the vijthe. of Fraunce have disscasid yow in or about the monithe of June the yere of Crist Ml.iiijc.lj., as he hathe late done of youre enheritaunce of Fraunce and Normandie and of the counte of Mayne, thoroughe umbre of the said fenied colour of trewes, ayenst alle honoure and trouthe of knighthode.

How the historier procedithe in his matier of exhortacion.

Nota bonum concilium.

And for to think to alle cristen nacions for to fight in bataile if the cas require it soo, that youre said enheritaunce can not be recuverid by none other due meane of pease, bothe for youre defens for the recuverey of youre roiaume of Fraunce, duchie of Normandie, and sithen sone after the duchie of Gascoigne, that alle cristen princes opynly may know it is youre verray true enheritaunce, and for salvacion of youre enheritaunce by undew menys lost; for that yt ys Magister Alanus de Auriga dicit. wryten by [maister Aleyn Chareter, id est de Auriga, in hys boke of Quadrilogue, secretaire to Charlys le bien amée, the yere of Crist .1422. yn thys termys: "Ayenst Herry the .vth., named kyng," yn provokyng the adverse partye to werre ayenst the seyd king Herry. How[120]] the famous clerke of eloquence Tullius seithe in his booke of retherique that, like as a man recevethe his lyving in a region or in a countree, so is he of naturall reason bounde to defende it; and law of nature, as welle as law imperiall whiche is auctorised by popis and emperours, wol condescend and agre to the same. Also Caton affirmithe withe the said Tullie. Therfor late not this gret and importune losses now by infortune and of over grete favoure and trust put to youre adversaries, fallen ayenst this lande undre the umbre and coloure of trewes and abstinence of werre late hadde and taken at Towris atwixen Charlis the .vijth. youre adversaire of Fraunce and your predecessour {26}Harry the sext, and now uppon the exercise and usaige of bataile and left by so little a tyme, forto discomfort or fere to a new recovere. Not so: God defende that! for the famous poet Ovide seiethe that who so levithe the pursute and foloweing of good fortune for one mysaventure, it shalle never come to hym. And namely the said Water Malexander agreithe hym to the same saieng, and affermyng that good courages of hertis be not mynissed, broken, ne lessid for disusage and levyng armes for a litille season, nether for sodeyn recountres and hasty comyng on, be force of whiche one mysadventure may folow.

Nota quod pro defectu excercicii armorum mala sequentur exercitui Romanorum.

How for the defaute of exercise of armes the gret nombre of Romains were scomfited by men of Cartage.

Syr Alanus de Auriga.

A, mercifulle God! what was the losses of the Romayns, whiche in defaute and by negligence lost by a litille tyme left the exercise of armes was fulle gret ayenst the doughty men of Cartage, whan alle the puissaunce of the Romains were assembled in bataile, where that were so many noble men and coragious peple, the whiche were Notand' est. innumerable, assembled and joyned in bataile, that men say was betwene Camos and Hanibal prince of Cartage, the whiche discomfit Nota de cede Romanorum. before duke Camos in Puylle be suche power that the ringis of golde Nota de annulis inventis super digitos Romanorum occisorum. take frome the fingers of ded bodies of the said Romains, whiche were men of price and renomme, and Titus Livius seiethe in his booke of Romayne batailes were extendid and mesurid to the quantite of mesure of .xij. quarters or more, whiche Hanibal brought withe hym to his countre of Cartage in signe of victorie.

Nota de experiencia armorum ex parte Romanorum.

How after the seide gret descomfiture that a few nombre of Romans expert in werre (unfinished)

But the worthy Romains, for alle that, left not the hope and trust of recovering on another day, whan God lust, onnere and fortune, theyme so exercised daily armes, [and] after accustumyng hem ayene {27}to werre, were by experience lerned and enhardid, that, as by the exorting and comforting of one of theire princes, he assembled another time in bataile ayenst the litille residue that were left of the said Romayns, and by subtile craft of wise policie and good conduyt in actis of werre they fille and tooke uppon theym and charged theym so moche that by unware of theire purveiaunce met withe the said Haniballe at certen streightes and narow places fille into the handis of Romains, to the gret discomfiture and destruccion of Haniballe his gret oost of Cartage.

Exercitium armorum excedit divicias.

How men of armes welle lerned and excercised is of a grettir tresoure then any precious stones or riche tresour.

Dame Cristen saiethe in the first booke of the Tree of Batailes that there is none erthely thing more forto be allowed than a countre or region whiche be furnisshed and stored withe good men of armes well lerned and exercited; for golde, silver, ne precious stones surmountethe not ne conquerithe not ennemies, nother in time of pease wardithe the peple to be in rest, the whiche thing a puissaunt man in armes dothe.

How a few nombre of the Romains that were expert and connyng in the werre descomfited .c.iiijxx.Ml. of Frenshemen that the prince of hem tolde and set right litille by.

Magister Alanus de Auriga. Id est compilam de libro suo.

Also ye may consider by example of king Bituitus of the countre of Gaule clepid Fraunce, the whiche went ayenst the Romains withe an hondred and fourescore thousande men of armes; and he saw so few a companie of the Romains comyng that he despraised hem, and seid of gret pride that there were not inoughe of the Romains for to fede the doggis of his oost: neverthelesse, that few company were so welle excersised and lerned in armes that there were ynoughe whiche overcome and destroied the said king of Gaule and alle his gret {28}oost; whiche storie may be verified in every bataile or journay atwix youre adversarie of Fraunce and youre predecessoures entreprises this .xxxv. yeres that continued in possession frome king [named[121]] Henry the .v. is conquest till it was lost: for at the bataile of Agincourt descomfited In multitudine gencium non consistit victoria, ut infra. Nota bene. by seid king Henry the [wyth a few nomber.[121]] And at the bataile of the see ayenst the carrakes descomfited by Johan duke of Bedforde and the erle of the Marche being principalle cheveteins also in that bataile [wyth a few nombre yn comparison of the grete Frensh navye.[121]] Also at the journay of Kedecause descomfited be Thomas Beauforde erle Dorset after was duke of Eccestre; [the erle of Armonak conestable of Fraunce beyng aboute x.Ml fyghtyng men ayenst aboute .ixc. accompanyed wyth the erle Dorset.[121]] Also at the bataile of Cravaunt descomfited by [Johan duc of Bedford as by hys lieutenaunt[121]] Thomas Montague the erle of Salisbury and Roberd [lord[121]] Willugheby chiefeteynes. And at the bataile of Vernelle fought and descomfited by Johan regent duke of Bedforde, the said erle of Salisbury and the erle of Suffolke, [lord Wyllughby, lord Pownynnys, ser John Fastolf, and many other noble men yn armys.[121]] Also at the bataylle of Roveraye foughte [ayenst the bastard of Burbon, the bastard of Orlyance,[121]] be ser Johan Fastolfe, ser Thomas Rempstone, chiefteins, upon the vitailing the siege of Orliaunce. Also at the Averaunces. D'n's Talbot. D'n's Fauconberge. Harflete. rescue of the cite [of] Averaunces fought by Edmonde duke of Somerset and the erle of Shrewisburie and lorde Fauconberge chiefeteins. And at the second wynnyng of Hareflete fought [beseged[121]] J. dux Som', Ed's Dors'. Cane. by Johan duke of Somerset, by Edmund erle of Dorset, and the erle of Fastolf. Harynton. Shrewisbury, at the rescue of Cane fought by ser Johan Fastolfe and ser Richarde Harington, and his felouship, [ayenst .xxx.Ml. men.[121]] And so in many other [sodeyn jorneys and[121]] sharpe recountres sodenly met and foughten, to long to write here. And also for the gret part at any maner bataile, journey, enterprise, [seges,[121]] and rescuse of places, it hathe bene alway seen that the power of Fraunce have be in nombre of peple assembled ayenst youre power {29}Nota bene et applica. by double so many, or by the thrid part, yet youre right and title have bene so goode and fortunat, and men so well lernid and exercised in armes, that withe few peple have descomfited the gret multitude of your adverse partie.

How Vegesse in his Booke of Chevalrie also gretly recomendithe exercise in men of armes.

Vegescius de re militari.

O then, seith Vegecius in his Booke of Chevalrie, therbe none that knowethe the gret merveilles and straunge aventures of armes and knighthode, the whiche be comprehendid and nombred in dedis of armes, to tho that be exercised in suche labouris of armes, that withe wise conduyt prudently can aventure and hardely take uppon theym such sodein entreprinses on hande.


O then, ye noble Englisshe chevalrie, late it no mervaile be to yow, in lessing youre courage ne abating of your hardiesse, they that ye renew youre coragious hertis to take armes and entreprinses, seeing so many good examples before yow of so many victorius dedis in armes done by youre noble progenitoures, and that it hathe be a thing to moche left discorage you not; for, thoughe that ye were in renomme accepted alleway withe the most worthi as in dede of armes, but now at this time ye ben take and accepted in suche marcialle causes that concernithe werre on the left hande, as withe the Concideracio. simplest of price and of reputacion. And it is to suppose that it is rather in defaute of exercising of armes left this .xxiiij. yere day that the londes were lost, thoroughe the said coloure of trewes, and for lak of good provisions bothe of artillery and ordenaunce for the werre and soudeyng to be made in dew season, and for singuler covetice reignyng among some peple endowed with worldly goodes, that can not depart but easily withe finaunce [wagyng[122]] and soulde theim in tyme of nede, then for defaut of good corage and manhode, whiche is to deme werre never feerser ne corageouser to dedis of armes, so they may be cherished and avaunced therafter, as ben at this day.


How dame Cristen counceilithe to make true paimentis to sowdieris.

Hic nota optime pro solucione soldariorum.

For ye shalle rede in the first part of the Arbre of Batailes, where dame Cristen exhortithe and counceilithe that every chieftein and capiteyne of men of armes ought to have goode paimentis and sewre for assignacion of paiment for his sowdieris for so long tyme that he trustithe to endure and be souded in that voiage and armes; Nota concilium. for to that singlerly before thing alle chieveteyns shulde have regarde, by as moche as it is the principalle and chief cause of the good spede and conduit of here entreprise, and the undoing and mischief of it [the contrarye[123]], if the paimentis be not duely made to the soudeours; for late it be put in certein that no cheveteyn can not have ne kepe long tyme good men of armes eville paied or long Nota bene, ne forte. delaied, but discoragethe them as sone as paiment failethe, and takethe theire congie and licence of theire prince, if they can have licence, orellis they departethe bethout licence. And also of overmoche trust and avauntage gyven to your adversaries be this dissimiled trewes as otherwise. And also when that the cheveteins take more kepe to good than to worship [and] using justice. And as welle as in defaute of largesse to youre obeissauntes, not rewarding ne cherisshing youre obeissauntes subgettis yolden and sworne stedfastly abiding under your obeissaunce, but suffring them to be oppressid and charged unduely in divers wises, as well by over gret taskis and tailis rered uppon them, and therto they finding bothe horsmete and mannysmete to youre soudeours riding be the contre without contenting or agreing hem, becaus of nompower of youre said men ben not paide of here wages and soude, by lak of simple payment [caused the rather the ducdom of Normandy to be lost.[123]]

Nota peroptimum concilium istud.

And the same dame Cristen in the .xiiij. chapiter seiethe that a noble good cheveteyn, whiche wolbe a leder of a felowship in werre, he must use justice to Goddis pleasure; and that he may stand in the grace and favoure of the worlde, and of his retenu and {31}of other peple undre hym, that the said chieftein must pay his men of soude so justly and truly, bethout any defalking [or] abbregging of here wagis, that they have no nede to lyve by pillage, extorcion, and rapyn uppon the countreis of here frendis that be yolden undre obeisaunce of here prince. And be this way the ost may never faut, for then the ost shalbe furnished of alle costis coostis[124] commyng withe vitailes inoughe; so that it be provided that marchauntes and vitailers may surely passe and come, and that a payne resonable be made, that uppon forfeiting that payne no man take vitaile beforce without payment made in hande, as the proclamacions made by Henry the .vthe., that victorious prince, in his host. [And also the statutes made by Johan regent of Fraunce, duc of Bedford, by a parlement at Cane, yn the .ijde. yeere of [blessed[125]] Henry .vjte., named kyng, uppon the conduyt of the werre, that I delyvered to Inquiratur pro libro illo, bonum est. your hyghenes enseled, the day before your departyng out of London, that remayned yn the kepyng of ser Johan Fastolfe for grate Nota bene, ne forte. autoritee, a. iij.[126]] And that no damage or offence be done to the marchauntes. It is fulle gret jupardie and perille to an oost where as covetise of pillage and rappyne reignithe among men of armes more than theire entencion is to kepe and meinteine the right of theire prince's partie. And the worship of chevalrie and knighthode ys that they shulde peine hem to wynne. And suche as ben of that inordynat condicion of covetise and rappyne oughte rather be clepid pilleris, robberis, extorcioneris, than men of armes chevalerous. In example the said dame Cristen puttithe that the men of armes of the countre of Gaule, whiche now is Fraunce, that had in a tyme a discomfiture and the overhande uppon the Romains, being assembled withe a grete oost embatailed upon the river of Rosne in Burgoyne; and the men of Gaule had wonne gret praies and good, as horse harneis, vesselle of golde and of silver gret plente; Nota bene. but as to the worldly goodes they set no count ne prise of it, but cast it into the river. And in semblable wise it was saide of Johan duke Dux Bedfordiæ. of Bedforde, then regent, that the day he had the victorie at the {32}bataile of Vernaile, he exhorted, making an oration to his peple, that they attende not to covetise, for no sight of juelx and riches of cheynes of golde or nouches [or] ringis cast before hem or left in the feelde, to take them up, whiche might be the losse of the feeld, tille God had shewed his power and fortune; but onely to worship and to Nota bene. doo that that they come for. And so be the jugement of God had the victorie withe gret worship and riches, be the raunsonyng of prisoneris, and be rewardis of the said regent in londis and goodis to every man for theire welle doing that day, rewarded in lifelode of londes and tenementis yoven in the counte of Mayne to the yerely valeu of .x.Ml. marcs yerely, whiche was Turneis, as it is of record to shew; the whiche was don aftyr the Romayns' condicion, seeing that thei set so litille by goodis dispising but onely by worship, the whiche the saide Romains were gretly astonied and Exhortacio. dred her power, for thei saw it never done before. And wolde Jhesus for his highe grace that every prince, chieftein, or captein wolde be of so noble condicions as is before made mencion of! I have be credibly enfourmed by tho as were present in bateile withe the fulle noble and victorius prince of renomme king Henry the .vte. youre cousin and antecessour, used the saide counceile among his ostes. Nota bene. And also at the bateile of Agincourt be the exortacion of that forseyd noble prince Henry the .vthe. counceiled to set not be no tresure, praies, ne juelx and vesselle of golde and of silver, aswelle of tho that were his there lost, ne of the juelx that he wonne, but only to his right and to wonne worship. And that also fulle noble prince youre cousin Johan duke of Bedforde, another victorius prince, folowed his steppis tho daies that he was regent of the roiaume of Fraunce, and whan his chariottes of his tresoure and vesselle at the bataile of Vernelle in Perche was bereved frome hym by Lombardis and other sowdieris holding youre adverse partie, he comaunded the oost embatailed Exhortacio ad observandum ordinacionem principis in bello. not forto breke ne remeve [theyr aray[127]] for wynnyng or kepyng worldly goodis, but only to wynne worship in the right of Englonde that day, whiche he hadde the victorie to his grettist renomme.


But yet it most be suffred paciently the fortune that is gevyn to youre ennemies at this tyme, and late the case be taken for a new lerning, and to the sharping of goode corages, to the refourmyng and amendement of theire wittis. For the saide Ovide the lawreat poet saiethe that it happithe often times that mysaventures lernithe tho that bene conquerid to be wise. And so at other times in actis and Verba m'ri Alani de Auriga. dedis of armes that for lak of providence or mysfortune were overthrow, enforcethe hem to be conquerours [another seson.[128]] Here is yet noone so gret inconvenient of aventure ne mysfortune falle at this tyme, but that it hathe be seene fallen er now [yn kyng Johan dayes and in kyng Edward iijd day, as yn hys gret age put owt of Normandye and off many castells and townes yn Gyen by kyng Charlys the .vte.[128]]

Defectus pecuniæ ad solvendum soldarios fuit causa una prodicionis ducatus Normanniæ.

How the duchie of Normandie for lak of a sufficient arme waged in due time, that king Johan [of England[128]] had not sufficiently wherof to wage [his peple,[128]] he lost the duchie of Normandie.

Infinita mala ex sensualitate corporis.

For a like mysfortune and overthrow fille unto us for defaute of providence and helpe in dew tyme, and sensualite of lustis of the bodie idely mispendid, and for lak of finaunce and goodeȝ to soude and wage goode mennys bodies over into Normandie and other contrees, ande thoroughe the umbre of trewes, the hole privacion of your duchie of Normandie, and of Angew, Mayne, and Torayne, .1203. and a gret part of Gascoigne and Guyen, was in king Johan daies by king Philip dieudonné of Fraunce, the yere of Crist .Ml.ijc.iijo. in the monithe of Maij began.


Treugæ pluries infractæ.

How many divers times trewes that were taken betwene king Richarde the first, king Johan, and king Edward the thrid at the finalle peas generalle betwene tho kinges and the Frenshe kinges, were afterwarde be the Frenshe partie first broken.

And thus undre the coloure of trewes at divers times taken atwixt youre noble progenitoures king Henry the seconde, and also divers treties taken betwene the said king Johan and king Philip, and also sondry tymes trewes taken betwene king Richarde the first and the Frenshe king Philip dieudonné. And notwithestanding so oft tymes trewes and alliaunces taken and made betwene the forsaide kinges of Englonde and of Fraunce, alle waye whan the Frenshe partie coude have and fynde any avauntage or coloure to breke here Nota fallacias Francorum in rupcione treugarum; vide et attende bene. trewes they did make new werre ayenst this lande. Also there was another trewes made at Paris the monithe of Octobre the yere of Treuga pessima ao Xp'i 1259. Crist Ml.cclix. betwene king Henry the thrid and Lowes king of Fraunce, the whiche king Lowes haveng grete conscience that he heelde bethout title of right the duchie of Normandie, the counté of Angew, Mayne, and Toureyne, out of the handis of the kinges of Englonde, therfore toke a trewis withe king Henry the thridde; and the saide king Lowes graunted and confirmed to the saide king Henry and to his heires for ever all the right that he hadd or myght have in the duchie of Gascoigne, withe thre eveschies clepid diocesis and citees in the saide duchie, that is to witt, Limogensis, Caourcensis, and Pieregourt. Also at[129] Agenois and Peito. De infinitis dampnis ex ilia treuga sine pace. And a peas to be made atwix bothe kinges undre the condicion that the saide king Henry thrid shuld relese unto king Lowes alle his right in Normandie and in the countre of Anjou, of Mayne, and Toreyne, your verray auncient enheritaunce tailed, whiche albeit if the said king Henry thrid had alone made any suche relese it was of none strenght ne effect, for it was never graunted be the auctorite of the parlement of thre astatis of his roiaume. For it is to be undrestande that be no law imperialle ne by no dew reason can be founded {35}that a prince may not gyve away his duchees or countees ne his demaynes that is his propre enheritaunces to a straunge parsone, of what astate or degre he is, bethout the agrement and consenting of a parlement of his lordis spirituelle and temporelle, and of his comyns assembled, and a sufficient nombre of every of hem, as it hathe bene accustumed; so in conclusion the relese of king Henry thrid to king Lowes was and is voide. And if any relese of king Lowes to the said king Henry in the said duchie of Gascoine had be made it standithe of fulle litille effect, becaus it was the said king Henry propre enheritaunce by his aiel king Henry the second that weddid dame Alienor duchesse and heriter of Guien, as is before expressid. And so the said king Lowes relese was a confirmacion of the said duchie of Guien into king Henry thrid is possession and a De pluribus treugis sine effectu durationis. disclayme frome the kinges of Fraunce for ever. Also ther was another trux and pease made the yere of Crist Ml.cclxxix., at Amyens, betwen king Edwarde first and king Philip of Fraunce, that the said king Edwarde shulde holde peasibly all the saide landes in Gascoigne. Another trewes and peas made at Paris the yere of Crist Ml.ijc.lxxxvj. betwene the said king Edwarde first and king Philip of Fraunce for the saide duchie of Guien. Another trews made at Paris, the yere of Crist Ml.iijc.iijo., the monithe of Maij, betwene king Edwarde first and king Philip of Fraunce, that marchauntes and alle maner men might passe to bothe roiaumes of Englond and Fraunce bethout empeshement, and heelde not long. Another trux made in the yere of Crist, in a towne clept in Edward ijd. Latyn Pissaicus, betwene king Edwarde second and king Phelip king of Fraunce for the said duchie of Guien. And in the yere of Crist Ml.iijc.xxiiij. king Charles of Fraunce and of Navarre seased certein townes and forteresses in Guien for defaut of homage of the king Edwarde second for the said duchie of Guien, whiche townes and Nota pro titulo regis. forteresses after was delivered ayen to the king Edwarde by the moyen of Edmonde erle of Kent, his lieftenaunt. Also another pease made in the yere of Crist Ml.iijc.xxv. betwene king Edwarde second and king Charles de Valoys of Fraunce, be reason and meane that {36}Effectus maritagii Isabellæ reginæ heredis regni Franciæ. the saide king Edwarde weddid dam Isabel king Charles of Fraunce daughter, [soule[130]] enheriter of Fraunce; and at that tyme king Edwardus ijus duxit Isabellam filiam et heredem Karoli regis Franciæ Edward made Edmond his brother erle of Kent his lieftenaunt for the duchie of Guyen, whiche fulle nobly governed and kept that contre.

ao. Xl. Ml.ccc.xxvti.
Bellum Scluse.

Also in semblable wise in the yere of Crist Ml.iijc.xl. the .xiij. yere of king Edwarde the thrid, after the saide king had wonne the gret bataile of Scluse ayenst Philip de Valois his adversarie, and besieged Tourenay in Picardie, whan the saide Philip de Valois and the [kyngis[130]] Frenshe lordis were gretly rebuked and put abak, they desired a trux of king Edwarde frome the monithe of Septembre tille the feest of saint John next sueng, to the gret damage of the king Edwarde conquest. And the Bretons making under that colour mortalle werre to this land, but they were kept in subgeccion, and a gret bataile of descomfiture ayenst them had by the erle of Northampton, then the kingis lieutenaunt in that parties.

Also the yere of Crist Ml.iijc.xliijo., the .xix. day of Januarii, another gret trux for the yere take withe Philip de Valois calling hym king, youre saide adversarie, and his allies, and the saide trux broken be the seide Philip bethin thre yeris after, comaunding the Bretons to make werre ayenst youre progenitours.

Obcidio Cane.
Bellum Cressye.

And the noble king Edwarde the thrid, seeing that, in the monithe of Julie, the yere of Crist Ml.ccc.xlvijo., the .xx. yere of his reigne, disposed hym ayen to werre ayen withe the saide Philip, and wanne upon hym the strong towne of Cane, [and had[130]] the sore fought bataile of Cressy, the castelle of Calix by a harde siege bethin few daies after leide and (unfinished.)

De pace finali quamvis non sortiebatur diu effectum.

How notwithestonding a finalle peas was made solempnely be the fulle assent of king Johan of Fraunce prisoner, as it is the chief auctorite, and comprehendid in many articles most sufficiauntly grounded by auctorite of the Pope, confermed that, for alle that it helde not passe .vij. or .viij. yere after. And so contynued by .xiij. {37}yeris fro the saide tyme mortal werre continued tille a final generalle peas was made after by agrement of king Johan of Fraunce that was take betwene the said noble king Edwarde the thrid and the saide king Johan the monithe of Maij the yere of Crist Ml.iijc.lx., at Bretigny, the Pope assentyng, and be mediacion of cardinales, archebishoppis, bisshoppis, abbotis, dukes, erles, barons, and lordis, and by the assent of bothe parties of Englande as of Fraunce, and confermed by the saide Pope and the sacramentis of both cristen kinges, made bothe by hemselfe and by here commissaries in suche solempne wise that alle cristen princes wolde have thought it shulde stande ferme and have bene stable for ever, ande whiche finalle peas dured not scant .viijthe. yere after, but that it was broke fraudulentlie be feyned causes and colourable quarellis of the Frenshe partie, as of the erle of Armenak and other lordis of Guien. And after king Charles the .vthe, of Fraunce, son to king Johan, under colour of the seide trux and fynal peas made be his father, put king Edwarde the thrid and his sonnes and other his lieutenauntes out of alle his conquest, aswelle of alle the londis that king Edwarde conquerid in Fraunce, Normandie, Burgoyne, and Flaundres, and out of many other counteeȝ, baronies, and lordshippes, and of a gret part of the duchie of Guien, whiche counteeȝ and lordshippes in Gascoigne and Guien were given utterly and plenerlie to doo none homage, ne sovereinte to holde but of the saide noble king Edwarde, and of alle his enheriteris, never to resort ayen in homage ne feute to youre adversaries of Fraunce, as it is expresly enacted and recorded in the registres of alle the homagieris of Guien and Gascoigne, that was made by the erle of Armenak, the lorde de la Brette, vicecountes, barons, chevalers, and escuiers, and alle other nobles of the saide duchies, made to the saide king Edwarde and to prince Edwarde the duke of Guien the kingis lieutenaunt; that is to wete, in the cathedralle chirche of saint Andrieu chirche at Burdeux, the .1363. .xix. day of Juilly, the yere of Crist Ml.iijc.lxiij., present there ser Thomas Beauchampe erle of Warewik, that aventurous and most Chaundos chevalier. fortunat knighte in his daies, and ser John Chaundos of Herfordshire {38}De magnificencia Joh'is Chundos. vicount de Saint Saveoure [in Normandye,[131]] whiche had bene in many batailes, and had the governaunce of Ml. speris, and was comissarie for king Edwarde, withe a fulle grete ost of multitude of Princeps Edwardus. peple well defensid in Guien. And so, after that prince Edwarde had received alle the homages aboute Bourdeux, Bordelois, and Bassedois, within the seneschalcie of Gascoigne, than he and the said comissaries went to alle the countees foloweng and received theire homages and feutees bothe in the name of King Edwarde .iijd., and than in like fourme did homage to the prince as Duc of Guien. And was no differens betwene the bothe homages doing to the King and to the Duc of Guien, except that homager at his othe making to the saide duke De pluribus comitatibus in Vasconia sub obediencia regis Angliæ. he reserved the sovereinte and the ressort dew to his highe soverein seigneur king Edwarde. [So he] toke the homages of alle the vassallis and subgettis in the seneschalcie of Agenois, after in the seneschalcie of Landis, after in the counte of Bigorre, then in the seneschalcie of Pierregort, in the seneschalcie of Caoursyn and Roergev' and Lymosyn, also in the counté of Engwillom, also in the seneschalcie of Xantonge, than in the counté of Poitou and Poytiers. By whiche it may be considerid be the said countees and countrees before specified, it was of a wide space and many a thousand peple that were at that tyme and yet ought be under youre obeisaunce. And the saide prince Edwarde and the kinges commissaries made here journeis by .viij. monithes day as tille the .iiijthe. day of Aprille the 1364. yere of Crist Ml.iijc.lxiiij., or thei coude receive alle the saide homagiers; whiche now in the yere of Crist, after that hole Normaundie was lost, and also Gascoigne and Guien yoven up in defaute of socoure [of an armee made[131]] in season, many of youre saide trew liege peple be overcome by youre adversaries of Fraunce, and many a thousand peple of nobles and others coherted and be force ayenst theire hertis wille and entent to become homagiers to youre saide adversarie by the hole privacion of the saide duchie of Guien, as of Normandie, whiche withe the helpe of almightie God and {39}saint George, chief defendoure and protectoure of these youre londis, withe the comfort of youre true subgectis, shalnot abide long in theire possession ne governaunce.

De pace finali.

And now of late tyme a peas finalle was made and take withe king Charlis the sext, and the whiche finalle peas made solempnelie at Trois in Champayne, the .xxj. day of Maij the yere of Crist .1420. Ml.cccc.xx., and registred in the court of parlement, confermed that alle divisions and debates betwene the roiaume of Englande and the roiaume of Fraunce shulde for ever cease; and the saide finalle peas Pro titulo regis nota. heelde not fullie .ij. yeris, but brake sone after the decese of that victorioux prince king Harry the .vthe., upon his mariage withe quene Katerin.

And now last of alle the gret trewes taken and made at Towris betwene Henry the sext, the innocent[132] prince, and Charlis the .vijthe., youre adversarie of Fraunce, in the said .xxiiij. yere of his reigne, De infractione treugarum nota hoc. solempnely sworne and sealed, and sone after broken be the Frenshe partie.

And none of alle these trewes hathe ben observed ne kept, notwithstanding any sacremente, othes, [or] promisses made by youre adversarie and be his dukes, erlis, and barones of the seide Frenshe partie, but alway brake the saide trewes whan they coude take any avauntage ayenst us, as it shewethe openly, and may be a mirroure for ever to alle cristen princes to mystrust any trewes taking by youre saide adversarie or his allies and subjectis, be it the duke of Breteyne, the duke of Orliens, or any suche other his complisses: for where as youre noble progenitours were seased and possessid of the said duchie De continuacione hereditatis ducatus Normandiæ. Rollo dux vocatus Robertus filius magnifici d'ni in regno Daciæ vocati Byercoteferre. of Normandie sithe that duke Rollo of the nacion of Denmarke, the yere of Crist .ixcxij. conquerid it upon Charlis le Simple, to whome he gave his doughter in mariage withe the seide duchie, and so hathe continued from heire to heire .cc.iiijxxxj. yere, but after as it may be cast it was .cc.iiijxxxj. yere that it was nevor in no king of Fraunce is hande tille it was lost in king Johan is daies of Englande. And than for suche inconvenientis as was used now be mysfortune under {40}Nota causam &c. [the umbre of trewes and for puttyng down Arthur of Breteyn,[133]] it was lost and yoven up to the seide king Phelip dieudonné in the yere of Crist, about the first [and second[133]] yere of the seide king Johan. And frome the saide first yere of king Johan the possession of the saide duchie of Normandie discontynued .C.xxxvj. yere, that was Nota optime. to the yere of Crist Ml.ccc.xxxix., that youre right and possession was refourmed by youre noble progenitoure king Edwarde the thrid, whiche by many yeris leide segis and had batailes withe Philip de Valois and Johan of Fraunce, occupieris of that kingdom.

How king Edwarde the thrid made first grete alliaunces withe gret astatis or he began to make werre in Fraunce.

And therto king Edwarde allied hym withe fulle mighty princes to socour and reliefe hym in his werres or he began to set on hem: first withe Lowes emperoure of Allemayne, to whome he rewardid fifty thousande sak wolle for perveaunce, and soulde men of werre that he shulde make to helpe king Edward the thrid in his conquest; and Nota de auxilio regis Edwardi. after allied hym to the erle of Heynew and to the erle of Flaundres, and also withe the duke of Bretein; the whiche alliaunces was a fulle gret socoure and helpe to his conquest in Fraunce and Normandie, for he wanne at the first raise that he made over the see Conciderand'. townes and castellis, and soforthe reigned and continued in armes .xxxiiij. yeris, by putting the Frenshe king and his allies in gret subgeccion for the right of his enheritaunces, like as who so lust rede In cronicis Frodsard. the booke [of] his actis clepid [mayster[133]] Froddesarde more plainly may perceyve. And so alle his daies contynued tille unto the tyme Pax finalis sperata fuit. that be dissimulacion of the gret peas taken atwix hym and his prisoner king Johan of Fraunce, made at Bretigny the yere of Crist .1360. Ml.iijc.lx., that undre umbre of the seid trewes Charles le Sage his sonne, after the decese of king Johan, did put king Edwarde thrid out of alle his said conquest in Fraunce and Normandie, and partie of Guyen. And sithen more effectuelle laboures and dedis of armes {41}hathe be done by that victorioux prince Henry the .vthe., he being parsonelly bothe at many sieges, leyng at assautes, at batailes, and journeis frome the second yere of his reigne [exclusyfe[134]] into the day of his trespassement the space of .vij. yere. Whiche labouris parcellis of them briefly bene specified before. And there youre obeisaunt subgeitis and trew liege peple be put owt of their londis and tenementis yoven to hem by youre predecessoures, as wel as be that highe and mighty prince Richarde duke of Yorke youre father, being at two voiages lieutenaunt and gouvernaunt in Fraunce, for service done unto hem in theire conquest, not recompensed ayen to theire Exclamacio. undoing. Heh allas! thei did crie, and woo be the tyme they saide, that ever we shulde put affiaunce and trust to the Frenshe partie or theire allieȝ in any trewes keping, considering so many folde tymes we have ben deceived and myschevid thoroughe suche dissimuled trewes as is late before specified. And yet not for alle Consideracio. these inconvenientis that have falle to us be conspiring of deceitis undre umbre of suche dissimuled trewes, late it be out of doubte that, thoughe they holde theym never so proude, puissaunt, and strong, ne so sotill and crafty in suche deceitis conspiring, they by Goddis might shalbe overcome and brought to the right astate that it oughte be, where as the title and clayme of thenheritaunce of Fraunce is verray trew, whan dew diligence have be shewed by us in executing the saide right, as it is verefied briefly by examples here before.

Divina concideracio enodanda per theologos.

How be it that at som tymes that God suffrithe the partie that hathe a true title and right to be overcome, yet for alle that a man shulde not be discouraged alway to sew his right.

And albeit that at som tymes God suffrethe the partie that hathe right and a trew title, and that livethe after his lawes, to be gretly parsecuted, and to be put to over gret aventure, laboure, and peyne, some tyme to be overthrow, some tyme to be prisoner or slaine in {42}bataile be divine providence whan hym lust to be Juge, thoughe the peple be never so goode, ne the querelle, title, and right never so trew; and yet not for no suche adversite and as have fallen the yere .1450. of Crist Ml.iiijc.l., be the last overthrow of a notable arme at Infortunium bellum apud Fermenye ultima vice. Fremyny, where ser Thomas Kirielle knight, lieftenaunt in that voiage, [was take prysoner wyth many othyrs to the nombre about .ixc.,[135]] a grete caus was that the pety capteins wolde not obbey at the day of that journay at that sodeyne recountre to her chieftein, and taried lengir in his voiage after he was londed or he came to any strong holde was present.[136] Also another gret armee and voiage fordone for defaut and lak of spedy payment this yere of Crist Gyen. Ml.cccclj., whiche were at last redy to goo to Gyen, the armee taried upon the see coostis in Englande almost a quarter of a yere or theire Burdeux. payment was redie. And the cite of Burdeux lost in the meane tyme for lak of rescue. Yet God defende that thoroughe suche adversitees we shulde be utterly discoraged. Late us take example in according to this. It is wretin in the booke of Machabeus, in the .viij. chapitre, how the worshipfull Judas Machabeus, seeyng Goddis peple gretly febled and abashed be divers discomfitures of theym, seide to his knightis, A, a, It is bettir to us to avaunce us forthe and rather to die in bataile then lengre to suffre the gret passions and troubles of oure infortune. And fro thens forthe by the wille of God, good corage and comfort taken to theyme, they were made conquerours and had the victorie in alle theire batailes. Also another De sancto Lodovico rege Fraunciæ. example by seint Lowes king of Fraunce, whiche in encresing the cristyn feithe made gret armees into the holy land in [about[135]] the yere of Crist Ml.ijc.lxx., and suffrethe gret adversiteis among the Sarresyns, he and his knightis overthrow and take prisoneris to the Soudan of Babilon, and the king put to gret raunsom paide, his peple died up by gret mortalite of pestilence, suffred famyne, hungur, and thurst, yet God at the last releved hym, and [he] came into Fraunce withe gret worship.



An nother exhortacion of the historier.

O ye highe and myghtifulle prince, king of Englande and of Fraunce, and alle ye other noble princes and other puissaunt lordes and nobles of divers astates olde or yong, of so auncien a stok and of so worthy a lineage, as of the noble Trojan is blode descendid, as it is auctorised and may appere by many croniclers and histories of noble doctours enacted and registred, that ye alonly have ever ben halden without note of errour or deformite of the law withe the most puissaunt and of power thoroughe alle regions cristen or hethen, haveng alway under youre regencie and governaunce the habondaunce of noble men of chevalrie, passing alle othir landes after the quantite and afferaunt of youre roiaume, lete then be as a mirrour noted and had before youre eyen by contynuell remembraunce to thentent that the excersising of theire noble actis in conquestis may the more vigorously endeuce you to succede the prowesse and vaillauntnesse of youre highe predecessoures in armes, like as it shewethe welle at this tyme of what worship they have bene by here victorious dedis, for they in difference of other nacions have ever ewred and shewed the renomme and excellence of youre highe and mighty antecessours' corages, aswelle in straunge regions as among the Sarrazyns in the region of Sirie and Turkie, as in the said neere regions of Fraunce, Spayne, Lumbardie, Spruce, and other countrees. And therfor ye shulde yeve laude and praisingis alway to God, for, sithe the trespassement of prince Edwarde and good Henry duc of Lancaster that was, [ther wer but few like to hem in armys.[137]]

Here is brieflie made mencion of the recomendacion of acyn[138] worship of Henry the .vthe. and his bretheryn Thomas, Johan, and Humfrey, .iiij. noble princes.

Where was he of late daies descendid of noble bloode that was so corageous in dedis of armes as was that mightifull prince of renommee of {44}youre noble lynage Henry .vte. and his said thre full mighty and noble princes his brethern, and next .ij. cosyns germayns of youre kynne, that in here daies were as the pilours and chief postis of the holders up of the [last conquest, and of the[139]] possession of youre rightfulle enheritaunce, bothe of youre roiaumes of Fraunce as of justice keping, tranquillite and pease in youre roiaume of Englonde, also of the duchies of Normandie, Gascoigne, Guyen, and of the counte of Mayne.

Dux Clarence.

For as for a brief advertisement and remembraunce how Thomas the duc of Clarence in his yong age, the yere of Crist Ml.cccc.iij., lieutenaunt of alle Irelonde, and after that lieutenaunt and governoure of youre duchees of Gascoyne and Guien, defending the true subgettis frome theire adversaries, holding up youre right and keping youre peple and subgettis under youre lawes. And after [the seyd duc,[139]] in company of the victorioux prince Henry the .vte., labourid in armes Conciderandum est. upon that noble conquest in Fraunce and the duchie of Normandie, there being lieutenaunt for that marchis, where as he in bataile among youre adversaries in the duchie of Anjou at Bowgée most worshiplie at a sodeyn recountre fighting withe a few felouship of lordes and nobles, levyng his hoste behynde, not abiding theire comyng, ayenst a gret multitude of fighters, the yere of Crist Ml.cccc.xxj. among the Frenshemen and Scottis was slayne; whiche not long after God thoroughe power suffred the seid capteyns of Scottis to be overthrow bothe at the batailes of Cravant, also at the bataile of Vernelle, and [also[139]] at the bataile of Rouverey.

J. dux Bedfordie regens regni Frauncie.

Also youre second cousyn Johan duc of Bedforde, that in his grene age was lieutenaunt of the marchis, werrid ayenst the Scottis, keping them in subgeccion, havyng gret journeis and batailes ayenst them. After that made admirall and kepar of the see, havyng a gret mortal bataile and victorie ayenst the carrakes, galeis, and othir gret shippis. Beyng also a certayn tyme lieutenaunt and protectoure in this lande; and sethe yeede upon youre said conquest into Fraunce and {45}Normandie, therof being regent and gouvernoure in the daies of the devout prince Henry the sext over alle the subgeitis of Fraunce and Conquestus comitatus de Mayn. Normandie .xiij. yeris, and conquerid the counte of Mayne, defending, keping, and gouvernyng the said countreis in gret tranquillite and peace, to the gret worship of bothe roiaumes, and there made his faire ende at Rone, where he liethe tombid, the yere of Crist .1435. Ml.cccc.xxxv., the .xiiij. day of Septembre.

Dux Glouc'.

And how the thrid brother Humfrey duc of Gloucestre, withe a notabille power, was upon youre conquest in Normandie withe his said brother, and at the bataile of Agyncourt was sore woundid, and Comes de Marche. Comes Suff'. after he wanne [with help of the noble erle of Marche and the erle of Suffolk acompanyed,[140]] brought in subjeccion, beforce of siegislieng among youre adversaries, base Normandie, the castelle of Chierbourgh, the cite of Bayeux, Costances, withe all the close of Costantyne and Averances, Seynt Lowe, Carenten, and Valoignez, withe alle othir forteressis and villages in that marcher. And over that sithe he was protectoure and defendoure of your roiaume of Englond, in the tyme of the said Henry the sext of grene age, keping gret justice, tranquillite, and peace withyn youre saide roiaume. And Calix. after whan youre nobille castelle and towne of Calix was beseigid .1436. in the yere of Crist Ml.cccc.xxxvj., without long respit or tarieng, he puissauntly rescued it. And many other souvereyne and princely condicions he used in this youre roiaume of Englonde, as in [bokys yovyng as yt ys seyd to the value of Ml. marks of all the .vij. sciences, of dyvinite, as of lawe spirituell and cyvyle, to the universite of Oxford, and[140]] cherisshing the noble clergie of youre said roiaume. And also havyng gret charge and cost aboute the gret tendirnesse and favoure shewed and done to alle straungiers, were they ambassatours, messangiers, and other noblesse that sought worship of armes, that of divers regions visited this lande, for whiche favoure and bounteous chier, withe gret rewardes done to theym, the renome of his noble astate and name sprad thoroughe alle cristyn roiaumes {46}and in hethynesse. And after he had by many wyntris lyved in worship, he making his ende at the towne of Bury, the yere of Crist .1447. Ml.cccc.xlvij., the .xxv. day of Februarie.

And over alle these puissaunt dedis done and meynteyned by the foreseid .iiij. noble princes in theire daies, and now sithen many of youre noble bloode, as cosins germayns and other allieȝ of youre nere kyn, as dukis, erlis, barons, bene deceasid sithe the tyme of the last conquest of Fraunce and Normandie.

Nota de ordine militum de la Gartere.

For what cause the knightys of the order and felouship of saint George was ordeigned.

And also of the vaillaunt chosen knightes of the noble and worshipfulle ordre of the Garter, founded by the right noble prince king Edward thrid, and to bere about his legge a tokyn of the Garter, in the castelle of Wynsore, the .xxiij. yere of his reigne. And [as yt ys seyd[141]] in token of worship that he being in bataile what fortune fille shuld not voide the feeld, but abide the fortune that God lust sende. Whiche for gret prowesse and here manlynesse approved in armes was founded for her gret labouris in werre and vaillaunt dedis of armes be now passid to God and ought be put in memorialle, that in what Non sunt oblivio tradend'. distresse of bataile or siege that they have ben yn for the righte title in the crowne of Fraunce they alway avaunsid hem forthe withe the formost in example of good corage gyvyng to alle theire felouship, to opteyne the overhande of here entreprise. He allas! sethe that none suche were never sene withdrawers or fleers frome batailes or dedis of worship, but rather vigorouslie foryeting theymsilfe, as did the full Nobilitas Johannis Chaundos de comitatu Herefordie, senescalli de Peytou. noble knight, a felow of the Garter, ser Johan Chaundos, as a lion fighting in the feelde [at the bataylle of Fizar, yn Spayn, wyth prince Edward[141]] of the lion condicion, and defendid youre roiaume of Fraunce frome youre adversaries, preservyng theire prince's right and theire subgettis, avaunced youre conquest of Fraunce and Normandie, Angew, and Mayne, and the noble duchie of Gascoigne and Gyen, {47}and maynteyned theire honoure and astate, to the welle of youre bothe roiaumes and relief of youre treu subgettis of this lande. And thereto they have ben of the condicions of lyons fighting withe gret strenght, puissauntlie and stifly sett to withestande youre ennemies, notwithestanding gret part of the said adverse partie have voided, fledd, and forsake the feeld and theire felouship at suche tyme as they sought to abide. In example, of the fulle noble jorney late had Senlys .1431. in the yere of Crist Ml.cccc.xxxj., at Senlys, where youre lieutenaunt and youre power being present, and Charlis the .vijthe, youre gret adversarie of Fraunce withe alle his power to the nombre of .lti.Ml. fighters on his side, and embatilled by thre daies in the feeld, fled and voided unfoughten at the said jorney of Senlis, youre saide kynnesman Johan duc of Bedford being then lieutenaunt, and present in the feeld before hym thre daies. And also sone after the saide worshipfull journey of Senlis, your saide adversarie of Fraunce, after that Parys. made his entreprise, comyng before the noble cite of Paris, with alle his roialle power to have entred the said cite, and to put out youre saide cosyn duke of Bedford; whiche havyng knowlege therof incontinent disposed hym (albeit he had upon so soden warnyng but a few felouship) to mete ayen withe youre saide adversarie, and put hym in gret aventure, and entred in youre saide cite of Paris to relief and defende theym as he promised, and sent worde unto hem late before to theire grettist yoie and comfort. And youre said adversarie, that ententid to gete the saide cite, besieging theym withe a grete nombre, mightilie resisted withe men and ordenaunce, so grevously hurt, being fayne to voide incontinent.

And as in this maner it shewithe evidently that youre true obeisaunt lordis, and noble chieveteins, also true subgettis, have abandonned theire bodies, putting them in gret jupardie unto the parelle of dethe, or to be taking prisoneris, and yet God hathe served hem soo, that thoroughe His grace and theire manhod withe wise governaunce [they] have had the overhande of youre adversaries, and kept bothe the saide citee and the feelde withe other good men that aboode, whan theire partie contrarie have ben nombred double or treble {48}moo than youris, as is before expressid. And at whiche tyme the saide citee was so mightly besegid, ser John Radclif knight, withe his felouship, had gret worship.


O ye right noble martirs! whiche that for youre verray righte of the coroune of Fraunce, and for the welfare of the kingis highenesse, and for the worship of his bothe roiaumes of Englond and Fraunce, ye forto susteyne righte and forto wynne worship, have ben often put in gret aventure, as was often tymes of the worshipfulle Romayns. And therfore of you may be saide that ye were alway stedfast and obeieng youre souvereyn unto the jupardie and perille of dethe. So wolde Jhesus that in the brief seson of the sodeyne and wrecchid intrusion late had by the unmanly disseising and putting oute of Fraunce, Normandie, Angew, and Mayne, withe the duchies of Gasquien and Guyen, whiche is done bethin the space of .j. yere and .xiiij. wekis, that is to wete frome the .xv. day of Maij in the yere of Nota. 1449, 1450. Crist Ml.cccc.xlix. unto the .xv. day of the monithe of August the yere of Crist Ml.cccc.l, that every castelle, forteresse, and towne defensable of the said duchiees [were delyvered upp by force or composicion to the adverse partye.[142]] And if they had be alway furnished and stuffed withe suche suffisaunt nombre of men of armes, with ordenaunce, vitaile, and wages duely kept and be paied, that they myght couraged and enforced hem to have bene kept stille the possession,[143] and they so being of the lyonns kynde as to have bene of soo egir courage and so manly and stedfast as they were before this tyme in that parties of Normandie, conquering, keping, and defending it as they did by the space of .xxxv. yeris complete and .vij. Tempus ultimi conquestus. daies frome the begynnyng of the last conquest the thrid yere of king Henry the .vthe., and not the whele of fortune turned ayenst this lande as it hathe. Notwithestanding king Edwarde the thrid occupied not in his conquest of Fraunce and Normandie passe .xxxiiij. yere, whiche that after undre certayne condicions upon apoyntement of a smalle pease made atwix hym and king Johan of Fraunce was {49}graunted that the saide king Johan shulde be seased and possessid De pace finali apud Bretygnye. ayen of a part of the said roiaume and duchie for certeyne countees, baronnyes, and seignories that we shulde in chief halde in Guien and other contrees, whiche is more amplie declared in the saide finalle trety of pease made at Bretygny; yet for alle the othes, sacrementis, seles of bothe kingis and here lordis made, the said trety of pease was sone broken by the adverse partie when they couth take theire .1371. avauntage, about the yere of Crist Ml.ccc.lxxj.

Exclamacio alia.

He allas! we dolorous parsones suffring intollerabille persecucions and miserie, aswelle in honoure lost as in oure[144] lyvelode there unrecompensid, as in oure meveable goodes bereved, what shalle we doo or say? Shalle we in this doloure, anguisshe, and hevynesse contynew long thus? Nay, nay, God defende that suche intrusions, grete wrongis, and tiranye shuld be left unpunisshed, and so gret a losse unpunysshed and not repared! For one good moyen, undre correccion, De amicicia per maritagia et alias alligancias fienda. may be this, and if youre lordis wolde enforce hem to renew theire olde allieȝ of straunge regions and countrees, as the Romayns did whan they werrid in Auffrik ayenst the Cartages, and of late daies king Edwarde the thrid gafe example and sithe king Harry the .vte. in oure daies, and also his noble brothir Johan duke of Bedford Nota bene. after hym; whiche allies be almost werid out and foryete to oure grete desolacion, whiche and they were renewed by meane of mariages of gret birthe, by cherisshing of lordis, nobles, and marchauntes of the Nota et concidera ad honorandum extraneos. regions that we have been allied unto, or desire to be gyvyng renomme and honoure in armes to the princes that we desire alliaunce, or[145] sending at suche tymes as the cas shalle require to the princes ambassiatours that be halden worshipfulle men of astate and degree that have sene worship in divers contreis, whiche prudently can purpose and declare the urgent cause and necessite of this royaume, it wolde be to think verralie than that tho yowre[146] people true subgettis of Fraunce were mynusshed or abated as it is, but oure saide allies wolde enforce hem withe alle hir power and might to the {50}reformacion of the saide intrusions, and under colour of trewes wrought ayenst us. In example of this matier, it bathe bene specified herebefore, and how it hathe be rad among the Romayne stories that, whan Haniballe, prince of Cartage, had so gret a descomfiture ayenst Camos, governour of the Romayne ooste, that the men of Cartage gaderid of the fingers of the ded Romayns three muys fulle of golde ringis. So it shewed that the power of Rome was gretly mynusshed and febled. Than, whan this tidingis come to Cartage, one Hamon, a wise man, a senatoure, demaunded if it so were that for alle so gret a discomfiture is

[At this place a leaf of the MS., or more, has been lost.]


Tullius Cicero.

whiche may noie be, for Cicero seicthe in the booke that he made of Divinacion, and the famous doctour seint Austyn in the book of Fre Boecius. wille, and also Boecius in his booke of Consolacion, or[147] Comforte ayenst mysfortune, accorden to the same, that we shuld not only trust that the thinges whiche sounethe to adversite or infortune, and the whiche comethe to us adversarily or on the lift side, for oure Constellacio non necessitat sed forte disponit mores hominum altor' bene vel contra, ac impressiones aeris et causa mere naturalia concernencia. offenses not keping the lawes of God, that oft tymes comythe, they dyvynyng that they fallithe be casuelte of fortune, by prophesies, orellis thoroughe influence and constellacions of sterris of hevyn, whiche jugementes be not necessarilie true, for and if it were like to trouthe it were but as contingent and of no necessite, that is to sey, as likely to be not as to be. And if a constellacion or prophesie signified that suche a yere or bethin suche a tyme there shulde falle werre, pestilence, or deerthe of vitaile to a contree or region, or privacion of a contre, it is said but dispositiflie and not of necessite or certente, for than it shulde folow that the prophesies, constellacions, and influence of sterris were maistris over Goddis power, and that wolde soune to an herisie orellis to a gret erroure. And if suche {51}prophesies and influence of the seide constellacions might be trew, Contra fiduciam adhibendam in prophesiis. Nota conclusionem. Nisi fuerit sanctissimis viris. yet God hathe gyve that souvereynte in mannys soule that he, havyng a clene soule, may turne the contrarie disposicion that jugement of constellacion or prophesies signified. As it is verified by the famous astrologien Ptolome in his booke called Centilogie, the capitalle, seieng quod homo sapiens dominatur astris, that a man is sovereyn abofe suche domes of constellacions. And therfor ye oughte not deme ne conceyve the gret adversite that fallithe to us is not falle to us by prophesie or by influence of constellacion of sterris, but only for synne and wrecchidnes, and for lak of prudence and politique governaunce in dew tyme provided, and havyng no consideracion to the comen wele, but rathir to magnifie and enriche oure silfe by singler covetise, using to take gret rewardis and suffring extorcions over the pore peple, for whiche inconvenientis by the jugementis and suffraunce of God, and of his divine providence, the whiche by divers and of his secretis and as misteries unknowen to us he hathe suffred this mysfortune among us here, and privacion of the saide roiaume of Fraunce and contreis ther to falle upon us. And who so wolle considre Josephus. Orosius. Titus Livius. welle the histories of olde croniclers, as of Josephas, libro Antiquitatum, Orosius de Ormesta Mundi, Titus Livius of the Romayne battelis, and such othirs, how that gret chaunge of roiaumes and countreis frome one nacion to another straunge tong hathe be, for synne and wrecchidnesse and mysgovernaunce reignyng in the roiaume so conquerid. And as it is made mencion in the olde Gyldas. historien called Gildas that for pride, covetice, and flesshely lustis Deexpulsione Britonum in Walliam et Cornewaylle propter peccata. Destruccio regnorum. used amongis the olde Breton bloode lordis of this roiaume, God suffred the Saxons of Duche ys tung, a straunge nacion, to dryve them out of this land in Angle in Cornewale and Walis. And where is Nynnyve, the gret cite of thre daies? and Babilon, the gret toure, Nynyve. Babylon. Troye. Thebes. Athenes. inhabited now withe wilde bestis? the citeis of Troy [and] Thebes, .ij. grete magnified citeis? also Athenes, that was the welle of connyng and of wisdam? and Cartage, the victorioux cite of gret renomme, most doubtable, by the Romayns was brent to asshes. {52}Rome. And also Rome, so gloriously magnified thoroughe alle the world, Jerusalem. overthrow the gret part of it; aswelle as was Jerusalem. And to take an example of the many overthrowes and conquestis of this lande by straunge nacions sithen the Breton bloode first inhabited, Picti gentes. as withe peple callid Pictics, commyng out of ferre northe partie of Saxones. the worlde. Then after the Saxones drove out the olde Breton Danii. Normanni. Andegavenses. bloode. Than after the Danys peple conquerid the Saxons, and than the Normans conquerid the Danys. And sone after the Angevyns of highe Fraunce, full noble knightis of renomme, Geffrey erle Galfridus Plantagenest. Plantagenet erle of Angew maried withe dame Maud, doughter of the duke of Normandie and king of Englande, Harry the second, whych doughter, called dame Maude emperesse, and so haldyn stille the Normandie bloode and the Angevyns into this tyme. And Job in his booke seithe that nothing fallithe or risithe on the erthe without a cause, as who saiethe that none adversite fallithe not to us, but only for wikkidnesse of lyvyng and synne that reignithe on us; as pride, envye, singuler covetice, and sensualite of the bodie now a daies hathe most reigned over us to oure destruccion, we not havyng consideracion to the generalle profit and universalle wele of a comynalte. And to bring to mynde how the worshipfulle senatours Lucius Valerius. Romayns did gife us many examples, as Lucius Valerius, and also the noble juge cenatoure of Rome Boecius, [of the grete lofe[148]] had alway to the cite of Rome. For the saide Lucius Valerius despendid so gret good upon the comyn profit of the said cite, to kepe and maynteyne the honoure of the citee, defending the cite and contreis about from here ennemies, that he died in gret povertee, but by the cenatours relevyng, and for his worshipfulle dedis they buried hym in the most solempne wise according to his worship. And Boicius. the said juge Boecius loved rightwisnesse to be kept, and the pore comyns of Rome in that susteyned and maynteyned that he spared nothir lord ne none astate. But suffred hym to stande in the daunger of the hethyn king of Rome, and to be in exile rathir {53}De republica custodienda. than he wolde offende justice. Notwithestanding the saide adversite and tribulacions felle unto hem for avaunsing and tendring the comyn wele, and alle men of worship may put hem in worshipfulle remembraunce among worthy princes to here gret renomme and De justicia. laude. Also it is to be noted that was one of the gret causis that the princes Romayns were so gret conquerours and helde the straunge roiaumes so long in subjeccion, but only using of trouthe and justice keping in here conquestis.

De justicia Camilli in obcidionibus historia gloriosa.

A fulle noble historie how that Camillus the duke of Rome wolde use justice in his conquest.

Quod princeps debet vincere cicius per justiciam quam per traditionem.
Titus Livius decade primo.

In example I rede in the Romayns stories of Titus Livius in the booke of the first decade that a prince Romayn clepid Camillus, whiche did so many victorioux dedis, and loved so welle the comyn profit of the cite of Rome, that he was called the second Romulus whiche founded first Rome, besieged a gret cite of Falistes, whiche is Florens cytee. nowe as it is saide called Florence, to have hem undre the governaunce of the Romayne lawes. And as he had leyne long at the siege, and after gret batailes and scarmysshes it fortuned that a maister of sciencis of Falliste called now Florence, the whiche had all the enfauntes and childryn of the gouvernours and worshipfulle men of the saide citee in his rule to lerne hem virtuous sciencis, thought to wynne a gret rewarde and thank of the noble prince Camillus, and by the umbre of treson ayenst justice that the said maistre wolde wirke to cause the senatours of Faliste [the rather[149]] to deliver up the cite to the prince, the said maister by flatering and blandishing wordis meoved his clerkis to desport bethout the cite in the feeldis, and so fedde hem forthe withe sportis and plaies tille he had brought hem withyn the siege and power of Camillus, and came to his presence, saiyng to hym that he had brought to hym the sonnes of the chief lordes and governours of the cite of Falliste, {54}whiche and he wolde kepe the said chyldryn in servage, the faderis of hem wolle deliver hym the cite bethout any more werre making. Camillus. Than saide that just prince Camillus that it was not the Romayns condicions to werre and punisshe such innocentis as never offendid in werre, ne knew not what werre meoved; and wolde not suffre that the Falistes be defrauded of here contre and cite by unjust menes of treason or fals covyn or undew alliaunce, but as naturalle werre wol fortune by manhod and just dede of armes to take the cite. And there the saide prince comaunded the scolemaister for his gret deceite to be dispoilid and to be betyn nakid withe baleese and sharpe roddis Conciderandum. withe his owne clerkis into the cite ayen; than the governours and maistres of the cite, havyng consideracion of the gret justice and manhod that he used in his conquest, sent to Camillus ambassatours Proposicio ad Romanos gentes. withe the keies of the cite, and purposid unto him, saieng, O ye fathir and prince of justice, wher as the welle honoure and renommee of justice and of victorioux dedis reignithe among you Romaynes by using of justice, and that for asmoche they perceyved that princes Romayns used feithe and justice, and peyned theym to kepe theire peple conquerid hem to be subgettis to Rome by justice, they were fulle joifulle and glad to lyve undre theire lawes, and so delivered hym the [keys and the[150]] citee, to the gret renomme of the saide prince and to alle the Romayns gretly to be magnified.

Historie of dame Cristyn, declaring how a prince and a ledar of peple shulde use prudence and justice by example of the noble cenatoure called Fabricius.

And also as dame Cristyn[151] in the .xv. chapitre of the first partie of hir seid booke of Tree of Batailes leiethe a noble example that {55}among alle vertues that shulde long to a prince, a duke, a cheveteyne, or to a governoure of a contre, citee, or towne, or a leder of peple, rehersithe how it is necessarie that he shulde be a prudent man and a wise and of gret trouthe, as by example it is write of the noble and trew senatoure Fabricius, leder of the Roman oostis, the whiche for his gret trouthe, vailliaunce, and manhod, and wise governaunce, king Pirrus his adversarie offred to gyve hym the .iiijthe. part of his roiaume and of his tresoure and goodis, so that the saide Fabricius wolde yelden and turne to his partie and become his felow in armes. To whiche Pirrus the said Fabrisius answerd, that a trew man might not to over moche hate and dispreise tresoure and richesse by treason and falshed evylle getyn, where as by possibilite and alle liklinesse may be honourable and truly vanquisshid and wonne bye armes, and not in noo maner wise by untrouthe and falshed. In whiche matier verifieng, saiethe Vigecius in his booke of Chevalrie, to a chiefteyne, to whome is commytted so gret a thing as is deliverid hym the charge and governaunce of noblesse of chevalrie, the dedis and entreprises of a prince is office is principally comytted hym Res publica. for the governaunce of comon publique of a roiaume, dukedom, erledom, barnage, or seignourie, castelle, forteresse, citee, and towne, that is clepid vulgarlie the comon profite, the suerte and saufegarde of alle the saide contreis. And if by the fortune of batailes he might not only have a generall consideracion and cure of alle his ooste or over alle the peple, contree, or citee that he hathe take the charge of, but he must entende to every particuler charge and thing that nedithe remedie or relief for his charge; and any thing myssfortune to a comon universall damage in defaut of oversight of remedie of a particuler and singuler thing or charge, thoroughe whiche might grow to an universall damage, than it is to be wited his defaute. {56}And therefore in conclusion of this, late it take example to folow the noble and fructufulle examples of the noble cenatours. And we ought so to kepe us frome the offending and grevyng of oure sovereyne Maker not to usurpe ayenst justice as hathe be doo, in suche wise that thoroughe oure synfulle and wrecchid lyvyng ayenst his lawes he be not lengir contrarie to us, suffring us this grevouslie for oure offensis to be overthrow, rebukid, and punished as we bee, but lyve and endure in suche clene life, observyng his .x. preceptis, that he have no cause to shew on us the rod of his chastising as he dothe.

Deploracio contra iniquos malefactores prevalentes.

Another exhortacion to kepe the lawes of God, for in doubte that ellis God wulle suffre oure adversaries punisshe us withe his rodde.

O mightifulle God, if it be soo as holy scripture seiethe, the whiche is not to mystrust, have not we deserved cause this to be punished, seeyng so many wrecchid synnes as among us dailie uncorrectid hathe reigned, for whiche we ought know we be righte worthy of Nota optime. moche more chastising and grettir punishement of God, he being just and not chaungeable; for it is wretyn in the booke of Paralipomenon that for the gret synnes used be theym of Israelle, God of his rightwisnesse suffred the Phillistyns that were they never so eville ne in so eville a quarelle to be persecutours and destroiers of the lande of Judee and of Goddis peple, and the rathir that the saide Israelites had a law gyven hem by Moises and kept it not.

De republica augmentanda.

How every officer spirituelle and temporelle shulde put hym in his devoire to the avaunsing of the comon profite.

And it is for to remembre among alle other thingis that is made mencion in this Epistille that every man after his power and degre shuld principallie put hym in devoire and laboure for the {57}avaunsment of the comon profit of a region, contre, cite, towne, or householde; for, as alle the famous clerkis writen, and inespecialle that wise cenatoure of Rome Tullius in his booke De Officiis [de Republica, that Novius Marcellus makyth mencion of yn dyvers chapiters,[152]] and in other bookis of his De Amicicia, Paradoxis, and Tusculanis questionibus, that Res publica welle attendid and observed, it is the grounde of welfare and prosperite of alle maner peple. And first to wete the verray declaracion of these .ij. termys Res publica, as seint Austyn seiethe in the .v. booke and .xxviij. chapitre of the Cite of God, and the saide Tullius the famous rethoricien accordithe withe the same, saieng in Latyn termes: "Res publica est res populi, res patriæ, res communis; sic patet quod omnis qui intendit bonum commune et utilitatem populi vel patriæ vel civitatis augere, conservare, protegere, salva justicia intendit et rempublicam augere et conservare." And it is forto lerne and considre to what vertues Respublica strecchithe, as I rede in a tretie that Wallensis, a noble clerk, wrote in his book clepid Commune loquium, Co. 3o. pe partis, seithe quod, "Respublica ordinatur hiis virtutibus, scilicet, legum rectitudine, justiciæ soliditate, equitatis concordia, unanimitatis fidelitate mutua adjuvante, concilio salubri dirigente, morum honestate decorante, ordinata intentione consumpnante." As for the first Tullius in nova rethorica. partie it is verified by Tullie in his Rethorik the first booke: "Omnes leges ad commodum reipublicæ judicis referre oportet, et lex nichil aliud est quam recta racio et anima justa, imperans honesta, prohibens contraria." And it is right expedient that alle tho that be justices, governours, or rulers of contrees, citees, or townes, to a comon profit, must doo it by prudent counceile and good avise of auncien approved men; for a governoure of a comon profit were in olde tyme named amongis the Romayns, havyng the astate that at this daies bene used [by] alle tho that bene called to highe digniteis, the emperoure, kingis, princes, dukis, marques, erlis, vicountes, barons, baronettis, consules, chevalers, esquiers, and aldermannes, justices, {58}baillifis, provostis, maires, and suche othirs officers. And Tullius in the first booke of Offices seiethe: "Parva sunt foris arma ubi consilium non est domi."

How auncient men growen in yeris be more acceptable to be elect for a counceilour, or for to gouverne a cite for a comyn profit, than yong men.

Tullius de Senectute.

Tullius in his book De Senectute saiethe that auncient men that bene growen in age bene more profitable in gyvyng counceile for the Examplum amplum. avaunsing and governyng a comon profit of a citee, towne, or village, as to bere offices, than othirs that bene yong of age, althoughe he be [of] mighty power of bodie. For an example he puttithe, as there be men in a ship som that be yonge of mighty power halithe up the ankirs, othirs goithe feersly aboute the ropis fastenyng, and some goithe to set up the saile and take it downe as the govenoure the maister avisithe hem. Yet the eldist man that is halde wisist among hem sittithe and kepithe the rothir or sterne [of] the ship, and seethe to the nedille for to gide the ship to alle costis, behofefulle to the savyng of the ship frome dangers and rokkis, whiche dothe more profit and grettir avauntage to the vesselle than alle tho yong lusty Experiencia, &c. men that rennen, halithe, or clymethe. Wherfor it may be concluded that the auncien approved men by long experience, made governours and counceilours of roiaumes, contrees, citeis, and townes, done grettir dedis by theire wise counceile, than tho that labouren in the feelde, cite, or towne by mighty power of her hand. And it is Job. saide by Job, .12o. that Roboam, whiche forsooke the counceile of olde men, and drew after the counceile of yong men, lost the kingdom [of] whiche he had the gouvernaunce; and whiche example is right necessarie to be had in remembraunce in every wise governoure is hert. And so wolde the mightifulle God that every governoure wolde have a verray parfit love to the governaunce of a comon wele by wise and goode counceile, and to folow the pathis and weies and examples {59}of the noble senatours of Rome, how they were attending to the commyn profit, setting aside singular availe. So tho famous region and citeis aboute undre theire obeissaunce reigned alle that tyme by many revolucion of yeris in gret worship and prosperite, as I shalle in example put here in remembraunce, and is founden writen in divers stories, as of one among othir ys

De preferramento rei publice.

How Fabius the noble cenatoure set by no worship of vayne glorie, but only laboured for the comon profit of Rome.

Fabius cenator dexspexit vanam gloriam.

Tullius de Senectute the first partie maketh mencion of a noble prince Romayne clepid Fabius, whiche had gret batailes and journeis withe Hanibal prince of Cartage, to kepe the conquest of Romayne contreis, and to see theire libertees and fraunchises observed and kept for the wele of alle maner peple; whiche Fabius despraised renommee and vayne glorie, but onlie gafe his solicitude, thought, and his bisy cure about the comon profit of Rome; for whiche cause the saide Fabius after his dethe was put in gret renomme and more magnified among the Romayns than he was in his liffe tyme. And the saide Fabius, after the right and usage was in tho daies, did gret diligence to lerne and know by augures and Quomodo Romani gentes fuerant divinatores et auguriste pro conservacione rei publice. divinacions of briddis and by other causes naturell after the ceasons of the yeris and in what tymes prosperite, welthe, and plente, derthe, or scarsite of cornes, wynes, [and] oilis shulde falle to the contre of Romayns, to his grettist comfort for the avauncement of the comon wele. And he delited gretly to rede actis and dedis of armes of straunge nacions, to have a parfiter remembraunce and experience to rule a comon wele, that was moche bettir than before his daies ne sithe was no consulle like to his governaunce except the worthy Scipion's. And it were fulle necessarie that princes and lordis shuld know by naturalle cause of philosophie the seasons and yeris of prosperite or adversite falling to the region that he is of, to th'entent he might make his provision thereafter; but more pite is few {60}profound clerkis in this lande ben parfitelie grounded in suche workis or they fauten her principales in scolis, so they have no sufficient bookis, orellis they taken upon them the connyng of judicielle mateiris to know the impressions of the heire and be not expertid, and be this maner the noble science of suche judicielle mater in causis naturelle concernyng the influence of the bodies of hevyn ben defamed and rebukid.

How Lucius Paulus Fabricius and Curius Cornicanus, cenatours, in her grete age onlie studied and concellid for the proferring of the comon wele.

Also to bring to mynde for to folow the steppis of the full noble consulle of Rome Lucius Paulus, whiche the wise Caton is sonne maried the doughter of the saide Lucius Paule. Also the senatours clepid Fabricius and Curiois Cornecanois, that they aswelle as the forsaide Fabius in her grete age did none othir bisinesse but only by theire counceile and by theire auctorite counceiled, avised, and comaunded that that shulde bee to the comon profit of the saide cite of Rome.

How Appius the highe preest of the tempill of Mynerfe, albeit he was blinde, of good corage purposid tofore the Romains to make werre withe king Pirrus then to be com subjet to her auncient ennemy king Pirrus.

Tullius de Senectute.

In like wise the [hyghe[153]] preest of the tempille of Mynerve of Rome clepid Appius, after he was for gret age blinde and feble, whan king Pirrus, king of Epirotes, werrid so ayenst Rome that he had [febled and[153]] werried them so sore and wan upon hem so gret contreis, that the Romains ayenst theire worship wolde have made pease and alliaunces withe hym to her uttermost dishonoure, {61}but the said Appius purposid tofore the noble senatoures Romayn Ennius poeta. and required hem to doo after the counceile of Ennius the wise consul, that the Romains shulde take good hert to hem, and not to abate here noble courages, to become subjet to theire auncient adversarie Pirrus; and that they shulde take new entreprinses upon Pirrus and destroie his gret armees; whiche the saide senatours were revived in theire courages thoroughe the wise exhortacions of Appius, and had the victorie of Pirrus.

De Officiis Catonis.

This chapitre declarithe how many gret offices of highe dignite Caton was called and auctorised for his gret manhode and wisdom, and how he in his age couraged the yong knightis to goo to feelde to venquisshe Cartage or he died.

Also the noble senatoure of Rome Caton, that was so manlie, prudent, and of holsom counceile, whiche in his yong daies occupied the office of a knight in excersising armes, anothir season he occupied the office of tribune as a chief juge among the Romayns, another season was a legat as an ambassatoure into ferre contreis, yet anothir tyme in his gret auncien age, that he might not gretlie laboure, was made consul of Rome to sit stille and avise the weies and meenys how the Romayns might alway be puissaunt to resist ayenst Cartage, whiche he hopid verralie or he died to see the saide cite destroied. And the said Caton, in presence of yong Scipio and Lelius, .ij. noblest yong knightis of Rome that visited Cato to here of his wise conduit and counceile, he being then of full gret age, tendred so ferventlie the well of comon profit of Rome, that he required and besought the immortalle godis[154] of licence that he might not die till he might know Cartage destroied by victorie of bataile, and to be avengid of the servage and miserie of the noble Romayns whiche were prisoneris withe Quintus Fabius in Cartage xxxiij yere passed.


Doctor militum in armis.

Of a semblable noble condition of Quintus Fabius according to Caton.

And Quintus Fabius, albeit he might not in his gret age laboure, left the usage that he in his youthe taught yong knightis, as to renne, lepe, just withe speris, fight afoote withe axes, yet he had in his olde age alway gret solicitude and thought for the avauncement of the comon profit of the citee by counceile, by reason and by inure deliberacion of hymsilf and of the wise senatoure.

The diffinicion of the office that belongithe to the senate.

Tullius de Senectute.

And whiche terme senate is as moche for to say a companie of aged men assembled togither.

How Caton writithe that citeis and contreis that were governed by men of yong age were destroied, and they lost also theire lifelode wastefullie.

Ita Officia danda juvenibus.

And Caton saide that who so wolde rede in auncien histories he shulde finde that citeis whiche were conduit and governed by men of yong age, were destroied and brought to desert, as well Rome as othirs, and it was not revived ne encresid ayen, but onlie be the counceile of auncien men. And the saide Cato makithe a question to tho saide yong joly knightis, Scipion and Lilius, demaunding them why they and suche othir yong counceilours had wasted and brought to nought theire inheritaunce callid patrimonie, and the comon profit of theire cite and countre destroied. And Nennius the poet made answere for hem and saide, tho that were made counceilours for the {63}comon profit of the towne, also suche that were of Scipion and Lilius counceile, were but new [not expert[155]] drawen maistris, ignoraunt advocatȝ and pledours, yong men not roted ne expert in the law ne in policie [of] governaunce, whiche by theire fole-hardiesse and be the proprete and nature of grene age causid the patrimonie of Lelius and Scipion to be lost, and also the countreis that they hadde to governaunce. And he that wolle have prudent avise and sure conceile must doo by counceile of men of gret age, aswelle in counceile of civile causes as in conduct of armees and oostis of men of armes in werre, for the defence of the comon publique.


Of the answere and reson of Agamenon duke and leder of the Greekis hoost ayenst the Troiens.

For Agamenon the noble knight that was leder and governoure of the Grekis batailes ayenst the noble Troiens,


Of the wisdom of king Nestor a Troian.

De conciliis antiquorum militum in experiencia preferrendorum.

when he herde of king Nestor, how he was holden the wisist lyvyng of counceile yevyng and of gret eloquence in his auncien age,


Of the recomendacion of the prowesse of Ayax a knight of Grece.

and in like wise one Ayax a knight of Grece was halden the best fighter amonge the Grekis ayenst the Trojens; in so moche that the Grekis desired of the immortell goddis to have only but .xl. suche batellous knightis as Ayax is to fighte withe the Grekis ayenst the Troyens,


How duke Agamenon trusted so gretlie in the counceile of agid men, that he required the immortelle goddis to have suche .vj. olde kingis as Nestor is, doubted not to wynne Troie in short tyme.

but that noble duke Agamenon required of the goddis six suche wise viellars as was Nestor, that then he doubted not within short tyme that Troie shulde be take and destroied.

Publius Decius.

How that most noble centoure Publius Decius, so hardie an entreprennoure in the bataile, whan the Romains were almost overthrow, he avaunsid hym silfe so ferre in the bataile, to die to th'entent to make the Romains more gret, and felle for his dethe in fighting tille they had the victory.

Nota bene diversitatem militum.
Publius Decius non est recomendandus in hoc negocio.

In semblable wise Tullius writithe of that vaillaunt citezin Romayne Publius Decius, at a tyme he was chosen consulle and as a chiefteyne among the Romayne ostes, he saw how the Romayne oost was almost bete downe to grounde, he thought in his soule that he wolde put his bodie in jubardie frely to die, forto make the Romains more egir and fellir in that bataile to revive hem silfe thoroughe cruelte of his dethe. He tooke his hors withe the sporis, and avaunsing hym silfe among his adversaries, and at the last was so sore charged withe hem that he was fellid to grounde deede. The Romayns, havyng consideracion in theire courageous hertis how knyghtly he avaunsid hym in bataile fighting and suffered dethe for here sake, tooke courage and hert to hem, and recomforting hem foughten so vigorouslie ayenst theire adversaries that they hadde the victorie.

[Here is added in the margin the following anecdote:]

Hyt ys to remembre that I hafe herd myne autor Fastolfe sey, whan he had yong knyghtys and nobles at hys solasse, how that {65}there be twey maner condicions of manly men, and one ys a manlye man called, another ys an hardye man; but he seyd the manly man ys more to be commended, more then the hardy man; for the hardy man that sodenly, bethout discrecion of gode avysement, avauncyth hym yn the felde to be halde courageouse, and wyth grete aventur he scapyth, voydith the felde allone, but he levyth hys felyshyp destrussed. And the manly man, ys policie ys that, or he avaunce hym and hys felyshyp at skirmysshe or sodeyn racountre, he wille so discretely avaunce hym that he wille entend to hafe the ovyr hand of hys adversarye, and safe hymsylf and hys felyshyp. And therfore the aventure of Publius Decius ys not aftyr cristen lawes comended by hys willefulle deth, nother hys son.

How the son of the said Publius died in the same case.

And the sonne of the said Publius, that was foure tyme electe and and chose consul among the Romains, put hym in so gret jupardie of bataile, for the helthe, prosperitie, and welfare of the Romains, that he died in bataile in like wise.

Here folowithe the historie of the most noble recommendacion in perpetuite of Marcus Actilius, a chief duke of the Romayne hostes, of his gret providence using in hostes ayenst derthes and scarsetees[156] of cornes, wines, [and] oilis; and how he of fortune of werre, being prisoner in Cartage amongis his dedlie adversaries, albeit he was put to raunson, suffred wilfullie for to die in prison, because he was so gretly aged and wered in bataile, then to the Romains to pay so infenite a somme for his finaunce and raunson.

Hit is historied also of worshipfulle remembraunce how that verray trew lover of the comon wele of the Romains, Marcus Actilius, that first yave hym to labouragis and approwementis of londes and {66}Autor rei publicæ. pastures, to furnisshe and store the saide countre withe plente of corne and vitaile; after, for his gret policie, wisdom, and manhod, was made consulle and conestable of the Romayne batailes, and fulle often sithis discomfited theire adversaries of Cartage. And he, at a tyme, by chaunge of fortune in bataile, was take prisoner into Cartage, being of gret age than. And for deliveraunce of whiche Actilius the governours of Cartage desired hym that he shulde laboure and sende to Rome forto deliver out of prison a gret nombre of yong men of werre of Cartage that were prisoneris in Rome, and he shulde goo frank and quite. And the saide Actilius denyed and refused it utterly, but that he wolde rather die in prison than to suffre the werrours of Cartage to be delyverid for his sake, for he loved the comon wele and proffit of Rome; and becaus that noble Actilius wolde not condescende to deliver the prisoneris of Cartage, they turmentid hym in prison in the most cruelle wise to dethe; that, and it were expressid here, it wolde make an harde hert man to falle the teris of his yen. The voluntarie dethe of whiche Marcus Actilius, for the welfare, prosperite, and comon profit of Rome, causithe hym to be an example to alle othir, and to be put perpetuelly in remembraunce for worship.

How the noble duke Scipion Affrican put hym in so gret aventure in his gret age ayens the Cartages, that he died upon,[157] rathir than to life in servage.

Scypio Affricanus.
Scipio Asyanus.

Also to have in remembraunce to folow the steppis of the full noble and glorious champions two bretherin Scipion Africanus and Scipion Asian, whiche alle their lyve daies emploied and besied hem in divers entreprises of armees and batailes ayenst the Affricains, for the saufegarde and defense of the comon wele of theire contre. And the Scipio Affricanus. saide Scipion Affrican wilfully died in armes of chevalrie rathir than to lyve in servage and distresse among his adversaries in Cartage.


How Scipion Asian, a noble conqueroure for the Romayns, yet in his age he was envyed, accused to king Antiochus, [and] died pitouslie in prison for his rewarde.

And notwithestanding after many triumphes and victories done by Scipion Asian, that put in subjeccion the contre of Asie, and enriched gretlie the tresoure of Rome thoroughe his conquestis, he was by envious peple accused falsely to king Antiochus, that he hadde withehalde the tresoure of Rome, and was condempned to prison, where he endid his daies.

Lucius Paulus.

How Lucius Paulus, a cenatoure, in defaute that his hoste wolde not doo by counceile, he was slayne in bataile.

Quod capitanei non debent renunciare concilia peritorum.

Also Lucius Paulus, a noble consul Romayne, that spared not hym silfe to die in bataile in Puylle withe .ccc. noble Romains that were assemblid unwitting the saide Lucius Paulus, and alle for lak of counceile that the saide .iijc. nobles Romayns wolde not be governed by hym: he seeng anothir consul Romayn toke the entreprise, was so overthrowen withe his felouship, the saide Lucius Paulus avaunced hym wilfully among his adversaries withe the residew of the Romains that [were] lefte, and there died withe them, to th'entent that it shulde be noted and know that the saide entreprise was not lost in his defaute.

Marcus Marcellus.

How Marcus Marcellus, a consul that for the welfare of Rome, bethout avise, went hastilie to bataile ayenst Haniballe of Cartage, and he being so sorie for the dethe of so manlie a duke did hym to be buried in the most worshipfulle wise.

Also it is [to be] remembrid of Marcus Marcellus, a consulle Romayne that set noughte of dethe, for he upon a tyme, bethout gret {68}deliberacion or advisement, desired to fight ayenst Haniballe prince of Cartage, assemblid withe a gret power ayenst the Romains, whiche were feerse

[Here again a leaf of the Manuscript is lost.]

of man, his beeis for hony, his medewis purveied for sustenaunce of his grete bestis, and every man after his degree to store hym silfe, that whan ther falle by fortune of straunge wethirs, as thoroughe excessife moist, colde, heet, mildewis, or by fortune of bataile and werre, the saide countre, cite, towne, village, or menage so provided and stuffid before shalle mow withe gret ease endure the persecucion of a scarsete or derthe fallen [by] suche straunge menys. And Res publica. aswelle the terme of Res publica, whiche is in Englisshe tong clepid a comyn profit, it ought aswelle be referred to the provision and wise gouvernaunce of a mesuage or a householde as to the conduit and wise governaunce of a village, towne, citee, countree, or region.

[The following addition is here made in the margin.]

Hyt ys to remembre thys caase of rebellyon of Parys felle in abcence of Herry .vte. kyng beyng in England wyth hys queene. And bethoute noote of vaynglory, yff I do wryte of myne autor[158] I fynde by hys bokes of hys purveours how yn every castelle, forteresse, and cyte or towne he wolde hafe grete providence of vitaille of cornys, of larde, and beoffes, of stokphyshe and saltfyshe owt of England commyng by shyppes. And that policie was one of the grete causes that the regent of Fraunce and the lordes of the kyng ys grete councelle lefft hym to hafe so many castells to kepe that he ledd yerly .iijc. sperys and the bowes. And also yn semblable wyse purveyed yeerly for lyverey whyte and rede for hubes for hys soudeours, and for armurs wepyns redye to a naked man that was hable to do the kyng and the sayd regent service. And yt fille yn the .viijte. yere of Herry the .vthe., named kyng, when he was capteyn of the Bastyle of Seynt Antonye of Parys, and Thomas Beauford, dux of Excestyr, {69}beyng then capteyn of the cytee, hyt fortuned that for the arrestyng of the lord Lyseladam, who[159] was yn so grete favour of the cyte that alle the comyns of the seyd cyte [stode] sodanly to harneys and rebelled ayenst the duc of Exetyr and ayenst hys armee and felyshyppe; so the duc for more suerte wyth hys felyshype were coherced to take the Bastyle for her deffence. And at hys commyng the chieff questyon he demaunded of the seyd Fastolf how welle he was stored of greynes, of whete, of benys, pesyn, and aveyn for horsmete, and of othyr vitaille; he seyd for half yere and more suffisaunt. And hyt comforted gretly the prince. Then the duc made redy the ordenaunce wyth shot of grete gonnys amongys the rebells and shot of arowes myghtelye, that they kept her loggeyns. And the Frenshe kyng and the quene beyng yn the cytee, helde ayenst the rebellys, so yn short tyme the burgeyses wer constreyned to submytt them and put hem yn the duc ys grace.

De magnificencia felicitatis cultoribus terrarum adhibenda, specialiter Cyro regi.

Caton magnifiethe that prince that cherisshith and favourithe erthe tiliers.

And as Caton writithe that it is one of the principalle dedis of a prince to maynteyne, kepe, and avaunce labourage of the londe, and of all tho that bee laboureris of the londe, whiche men soo cherisshed most of verray necessite cause a roiaume, countree, or cite to be Socrates. plenteous, riche, and well at ease. And the philosophur Socrates writithe that Cirus king of Perse was excellent in wit, glorious in seignorie terrien; in the daies [of] whiche Cirus one Lisander, of the cite of Lacedemone in Grece, a man halden of gret vertew and noblesse, came owt of ferre contrees to see the saide king Cirus, being in the cite of Sardes, and presented hym withe clothis of golde, juellis, and othir ricchesses sent by the citezeins of Lacedemonois; the De quodam Lysander ph'o. whiche king Cirus received the saide Liȝander full worshiplie in his palais, and, for the grettist ricchesse roialle and pleasure that the said {70}king Cirus had to doo hym worship and pleasure and chier, he broughte the saide Lisander to see his gardins and herbers, whiche gardins were so proporcionallie in a convenient distaunce sett and planted withe treis of verdure of divers fructis, the gardyns so welle aleyed to walke upon, and rengid withe beddis bering fulle many straunge and divers herbis, and the herbers of so soote smyllis of flouris and herbis of divers colours, that it was the joieust and plesaunt sighte that ever the saide citesyn Lisander had see beforne. De Ciro rege Persarum. And the saide Cirus saide unto Lisander that he had devised and ordeined the herbers to be compassed, rengid, and made, and many of the treis planted it withe his owne hande. And the saide Lisander, beholding the gret beaute, semlinesse of his parson, [and] the riche clothis he ware of tissue and precious stones, he saide that fortune and felicite mondeyne was joyned and knyt withe his vertue and noblesse roiall, forasmoche as the saide Cirus emploied and intentife[160] besynesse in tymes oportune in tilieng, ering, and labourage of his londis to bere corne and fruit, whiche is the principalle partie of beneurte and felicite mondeyne, that is to wete the Tullius. naturelle richesse of worldlie joie. Also Tullius writithe that Valerius Corvinus, an auncien citesyn Romayne, did his gret peyne and diligence to laboure londes and make it riche withe labourage and tilieng upon the londe for the comon wele of the cite of Rome, that in tyme and yeris of scarsete the garners in Rome shulde be alway furnisshed and stuffid withe greyn, that a meane price of corne shulde be alway hadde.

De re publica.

How the noble cenatours of Rome avaunced here parsones in gret perille and jubardie ayenst theire adversaries for the comon welfare of the Romains.

And the saide famous clerk Tullius, in the .5. disc' of the saide booke, puttithe in remembraunce whiche of the noble and famous {71}dukis, princes, and cenatours of Romains abandonned her bodies and goodis, only putting them to the uttermost jubardy in the feelde ayenst theire adversaries, for the avauncement and keping in prosperite, worship, and welfare of Rome. Among whiche, one of the Lucius Brutus. saide Romains was Lucius Brutus, that whan Arnus, a leder of peple, assemblid a gret oost ayenst the Romains to have discomfit hem and Lucius Romanus. put hem in servage out of her fraunchise, the saide noble Lucius, being then governoure of the ooste of Romains, thought rathir to die upon the said Arnus, so that he mighte subdew hym, rathir than the saide citee shulde stande in servage. He mounted upon his hors, and leide his spere in the rest, and withe a mightie courage renne feerslie Non est laudendum secundum legem Christianorum. upon the saide Arnus being in the myddille of his oost, and fortuned by chaunce that bothe of hem wounded[161] othir to dethe. And whan it was undrestonde in the hooste that the saide Arnus, capitalle adversarie to Romains, was dede, his gret oost departed out of their feelde, whiche had not soo done had not bene by mightie aventure the wilfulle dethe of the saide Lucius Brutus.

How a prince, be he made regent, governoure, or duke[162], chieveteyne, lieutenaunt, capetaine, conestable, or marchalle, make alwaie just paiment to her soudeours, for eschewing of gret inconvenientis might falle.

Autor. Notandum est super omnia effectus istius articuli, quoad execucionem justicii.

And overmore, most highe and excellent prince, of youre benigne grace and providence, if it please youre highenesse to have consideracion, in way of justice and keping, to remedie one singuler offence and damage to youre liege people, the whiche by Goddis law, and by law of reason and nature, is the contrarie of it righte dampnable,[163] and which grevous offence, as it is voised accustumablie, rennythe and hathe be more usid under [tho that oughte be[164]] youre obeisaunce in Fraunce and Normandie than in othir straunge regions: and to {72}every welle advised man it is easy to undrestande that it is a thing that may welle bene amendid and correctid, and to be a gret mene to the recuvere of youre londes in the saide adverse partie; that is to Notandum est de ordinaria solucione Joh'is ducis Bedfordie. say, that shalle be men of soude and of armes, as well tho that [shalle be[165]] undre youre lieutenauntis as the chiefteins and capetains, may be duely paide of her wages by the monithe, [lyke as Johan regent of Concidera. Fraunce payd,[165]] or by quarter, bethout any rewarde [of curtesyie of colour[166]] gyven, bribe, defalcacion, or abreggement, or undew assignacion not levable assigned or made unto them, aswelle in this londe as in Normandie, to deceyve hem, or cause hem be empoverisshed in straunge contreis, as it hathe be accustumed late in the saide contreis. And that suche paymentis be made content bethout delaie or nede of[167] long and grete pursute, upon suche a resonable peyne as the cause shalle require it. And that none of youre officers roialle, nethir hir debitees or commissioneris, shalle darre doo the contrarie to take no bribe, rewarde, or defalke the kingis wagis; wherbie youre souldeours shalle not have cause to oppresse and charge youre obeissauntis and youre peple in taking theire vitaile bethout paieng therfor, whiche gret part of theym in defaut of due payment hathe ben accustumed, by .x. or .xij. yere day contynued, or the saide londes Nota multiplicacionem officiariorum. were lost, uncorrectid ne punisshid, [as] turned to the gret undoing of youre saide obeisauntes, and one othir of gret causis that they have turned their hertis frome us, breking theire allegeaunce by manere of cohercion for suche rapyn, oppressions, and extorcions. And also the officers than being nedithe not to have so many lieutenauntis or undre officers as they have hadde, whiche wastithe and destroiethe youre saide peple by undew charges to enriche hemsilfe; and many of the officers have be but esy vaileable to the defense of youre countre, thoroughe negligence of exersising of armes for theire defense and proteccion in tyme of necessite. For it was never seen that any countre, cite, or towne did encrece welle wherover many nedeles officers and governours that onlie wolde have a renomme, and {73}undre that colour be a extorcioner, piller, or briboure, was reignyng and ruling over theym.


O mighetie king, and ye noble lordes of this roiaume, if ye were wele advertised and enfourmed of the gret persecucions, by way of suche oppressions and tirannyes, ravynes, and crueltees, that many of suche officers have suffred to be done unponisshed to the pore comons, laborers, paissauntes of the saide duchie of Normandie, it is verailie to deme that certeȝ ye of noble condicions, naturally pitous, wolde not have suffred suche grevous inconvenientis to be redressid and amendid long or the said intrusion fille, and the regalite of justice had be in tho daies in youre possession. For often tymes suche as have pretendid theym officers wastid of youre [predecessour[168]] is De lamentabili oppressione subditorum nostrorum in Frauncia. livelode more than nedithe, and often tymes suffred them to be manassed [and] beten, and mischieved theire bestis withe theire wepyns, that they were nighe out of theire wittis for sorow, and so enforced for duresse to forsake youre title and youre lawes, and but esilie relevyd and socoured. And therto they have ben so often surcharged grevouslie withe paieng of tasques, tailis, subsides, and imposicions beside theire rentis, paieng to the somme righte importable sommes, paide to your predecessours for youre demains, and to theire landlordis that halden of you, and many of theym duelling upon the marches patised to youre adverse partie also to dwelle in rest, and this innumerable charges and divers tormentis have ben Alia exclamacio soldariorum ultimo in Normannia commorancium. done to theym to theire uttermost undoing. He allas! and yet seeing they bene christen men, and lyvyng under youre obeissaunce, lawes-yovyng, and yeldyng to youre lawes as trew Englisshe men done, by whome also we lyve and be susteyned, and youre werre the bettir born out and mainteyned, why shulde it here after be suffred that suche tormentrie and cruelte shulde be shewed unto theym? Deploracio miseriæ. O God! whiche art most mercifulle and highest juge, soverein, and just, how maist thow long suffre this regnyng without the {74}stroke of vengeaunce and ponisshement commyng upon the depryvyng or yelding up of that dukedom?

Nota tria.

Late it be noted and construed what gret inconvenientis have folow herof. There may be undrestonde to folow .iij. thingis inespecialle of gret hurtis. One is the ire of God and his rod of vengeaunce Prima. fallen now upon us by his dyvyne punisshement [of God,[169]] aswelle in suffring oure saide adversaries to have the overhande upon us, as in destroieng of oure lordis by sodeyn fortunes [of dyvysyons[169]] in this lande the saide yere and season, the yere of Crist .Mliiijcl. that youre [grete[169]] adversarie made his intrusion in the saide Normandy, for pite of his peple so oppressid, hiring theire clamours and cries .ija. and theire curses. The second is theire rebellion, as thoroughe theire wanhope, havyng no trust of hastie socoure and relief of an armee to come in tyme covenable, be turned awaie frome her ligeaunce and obedience to youre adverse partie, seeing theym thus ungoodelie entretid under tho whiche were comytted to kepe, defende, and maynteyn .iij. causa. them. The .iijde. is famyn of vitaile and penurie of money, and Conciderandum est super omnia. lak of provision of artillerie and stuffe of ordenaunce, whiche youre saide obeissauntis for faute of these were constreined to flee to youre adverse partie, and to leve rathir theire natife contree, orellis to die for famyn and povertee.

Ecclesia honoranda.

An exortacion how princes, lordes, and officers roialle shulde worship and meynteyne the Chirche, and defende hem from oppression.

And moreover in way of gret pitee and in the worship of God suffre ye not the prelates of the Chirche of that lande, as archebisshoppis, bisshoppis, abbatis, priours, denes, archedenes, and theire ministrours, to be oppressid, revaled, ne vileyned, as they have bene in youre predecessour daies accepted in fulle litille reverence or {75}obedience, for how that men usurpen in tho daies in surchargeyng them unduelie it is by experience knowen welle ynoughe, as they be manere of a prive cohercion to lyve in more rest withe theire lyvelode, be dryve too forto gyve out to rulers, gouvernours, and maistris of the marchis and contrees that they dwellin upon or have Nota bene. her lyvelode, gret fees and wages and rewardis nedelese. And the peple that were welle set[170] and often tymes they ben visited withe straungiers of gret astatis, as welle spirituelle as temporelle, and namelie withe tho that have the lawes to mynistre and to kepe, and withe other nedeles peple that waste and surcharge theym, for they were founded to that entent but to kepe theire nombre of fundacion, Hospitalitas in ecclesia est preferranda. praieng for theire foundoures, and [kepe hospitalitee for to[171]] feede Lamentacio. the pore and the nedie in case of necessite. A mercifulle Jhesu! many auctours rehersithe in her cronicles that Pompeus, whiche that was so chevalrous a paynym knighte amongis the Romains, the cause of his wofulle dethe and mortalle ende was alonlie that he on a tyme disdeyned to reverence and worship holy places, as chirches and seyntuaries, stabled his hors in Salamon is Temple, the whiche the saide Salamon had edified to be the most sovereyn chirche or temple of the erthe to serve and praise God. And in example of late daies yn king Johan of Fraunce tyme suche chieveteins as was in his armee before he was take at the bataile of Peitiers, as it is saide, avaunted hym silfe to stabille her hors in the cathedralle chirche of Salisbury. And after he was take and had sighte of the saide chirche [they[171]] had gret repentaunce of. And therfor, fulle noble king and ye puissaunt lordis of renomme, let a covenable and a necessarye medecyn be counceiled and yoven to us for provision and reformacion of this infirmite, and that it may be purveied for by so dew meenes that it may be to God is pleasaunce. And that we may withedraw and leve oure wrecchid governaunce that temporelle men wolde so inordinatlie rule and oppresse the Chirche. So that now this begon mischiefe and stroke of pestilence in youre {76}predecessour daies be not set as a jugement in oure arbitracion as to be decreed, juged, or determyned for oure wele and availe, but as a chastising of oure mysdoeng, so to be take for oure savacion. What saiethe saint Jeroyme amongis his dolorous lamentacions upon the prophesie of Jooelle? If we have not, (seithe Cogita. he,) know God in welthe and prosperite, then, at the leest, let us know hym in oure adversite, in suche wise there we have erred and fauted by over gret haboundaunce of suche chargeable crimes and synnes of delites, of suche oppression, covetice, inespecialle pride and envy, &c. Let us withedraw us from hem withe goode corage, and to that ende that we be not chastised ne punisshed by the stroke of vengeaunce and pestilence, nor of none suche affliccions as we hafe ben dailie by youre predecessour's daies by youre saide adversaries.

Quod officium deffencionis adversariorum patriæ est preferrandum quemcunque singularem facultatem sive practicam.

How lordis sonnes and noble men of birthe, for the defense of her londe, shulde excersise hem in armes lernyng.

Introduccio juvenum nobilium natu.

And also moreover for the grettir defens of youre roiaumes, and saufe garde of youre contreis in tyme of necessite, also to the avauncement and encrece of chevalrie and worship in armes, comaunde and doo founde, establisshe, and ordeyne that the sonnes of princes, of lordis, and for the most part of alle tho that ben comen and descendid of noble bloode, as of auncien knightis, esquiers, and other auncient gentille men, that while they ben of grene age ben drawen forthe, norisshed, and excersised in disciplines, doctrine, and usage of scole of armes, as using justis, to can renne withe speer, handle withe ax, sworde, dagger, and alle othir defensible wepyn, to wrestling, to skeping, leping, and rennyng, to make hem hardie, deliver, and wele brethed, so as when ye and youre roiaume in suche tyme of nede to have theire service in entreprises of dedis of armes, they may of experience be apt and more enabled to doo you service honourable in what region they become, and not to be [unkonnyng,[172]] abashed, ne astonied, {77}forto take entreprises, to answere or deliver a gentilman that desire in worship to doo armes in liestis to the utteraunce, or to certein pointis, or in a quarelle rightfulle to fight, and in cas of necessite you[173] and youre roiaume forto warde, kepe, and defende frome youre adversaries in tyme of werre. And this was the custom in the daies of youre noble auncestries, bothe of kingis of Fraunce as of Englande. In example wherof, king Edwarde .iijde. that exersised his noble son Edwarde the prince in righte grene age, and all his noble sonnes, in suche maiestries, wherby they were more apt in haunting of armes. Ser Johan Fastolf. And, [as myne autor seyd me,[174]] the chevalrous knight [fyrst[174]] Henry duke of Lancastre, which is named a chief auctour and foundour in law of armes, had sent to hym frome princes and lordis of straunge regions, as out of Spayne, Aragon, Portingale, Naverre, and out of Fraunce, her children, yong knightis, to be doctrined, lerned, and broughte up in his noble court in scole of armes and for to see noblesse, curtesie, and worship. Wherthoroughe here honoure spradde and encresid in renomme in all londis they came untoo. And after hym, in youre antecessour daies, other noble princes and lordis of gret birthe accustomed to excersise maistries apropred to defense of armes and gentilnes[175] to them longing. But now of late daies, the grettir pite is, many one that ben descendid of noble bloode and borne to armes, as knightis sonnes, esquiers, and of othir gentille bloode, set hem silfe to singuler practik, straunge [faculteeȝ[176]] frome that fet, as to lerne the practique of law or custom of lande, or of civile matier, and so wastyn gretlie theire tyme in suche nedelese besinesse, as to occupie courtis halding, to kepe and bere out a proude countenaunce at sessions and shiris halding, also there to embrace and rule among youre pore and simple comyns of bestialle contenaunce that lust to lyve in rest. And who can be a reuler and put hym forthe in suche matieris, he is, as the worlde goithe now, among alle astatis more set of than he that hathe despendid .xxx. or .xl. yeris of his daies in gret jubardies in youre {78}Optativus modus. [antecessourys[177]] conquestis and werris. So wolde Jhesus they so wolle welle lerned theym to be as good men of armes, chieveteins, or capetains in the feelde that befallithe for hem where worship and manhode shulde be shewed, moche bettir rathir then as they have lerned and can be a captaine or a ruler at a sessions or a shire day, to endite or amercie youre pore bestialle peple, to theire [enpoveryshyng[178],] and to enriche hem silfe or to be magnified the more, but only they shulde maynteyn your justices and your officers usyng the goode custom of youre lawes. And than ye shulde have righte litille nede to have thoughte, anguisshe or besinesse for to conquere and wyn ayen youre rightfulle enheritaunce, or to defende youre roiaume from youre ennemies. And that suche singuler practik shulde [not[177]] be accustumed and occupied [undewly[177]] withe suche men that be come of noble birthe, [but he be the yonger brother, havyng not whereof to lyve honestly[177].] And if the vaillaunt Romayns had suffred theire sonnes to mysspende theire tyme in suche singuler practik, using oppressing by colours [of custom of the law, they had not conquered twyes[177]] Cartage ayenst alle the Affricans.

How officers of the law shulde be chosen, welle disposid and temperate men, vertuous in condicion, and they to be protectid by lordis and noble men of birthe.

Hit was in auncient tyme used that suche practik and lernyng of the custumes and law of a lande shulde onlie be comytted to suche parsones of demure contenaunce that were holden vertuous and welle disposid, thoughe he were descendid but of esie birthe to occupie in in suche facultees, and to mynistre duelie and egallie the statutis and custumes of the law to youre peple, bethout meintenaunce ayenst justice. And the saide officers and ministrours of the law to be protectid and meyntened by the princes, lordis, and men of worship when the case shalle require, namelie tho that oughte defende yow and youre {79}roiaume that halden theire londis of you by that service onlie, and gyven to that entent by youre noble auncestries. And over this that they be lerned and introducid in the drede of God, and not presumptuously take upon hem to offende theire law, for the whiche, and in example to this purpose, it is wretin in the .36. chapitre of the prophete Jeremye, because that Joachym king of Juda despraised the admonestementis, advertisementis, and the doctrines of God, that Jeremie had doo set yn certein bookes and quaiers, the whiche he made to be cast in the fire and disdeyned to hire theym, but usid after his owne wilfulnesse and hedinesse and without counceile, therfor God seiethe by the mouthe of the prophete that of hym shuld issew ne come none heire to succeede ligneallie that after hym shulde enjoie and holde his roiaume, and overmore that he shulde visit hym by punisshement, and that aswelle his kynne as hym that had suffred and caused to be so eville inducid. And so it Exclamacio. fille after the prophesie. O ye than in the same wise puttithe away the delites of sensualitees of suche inconvenient occupacion as before is specified frome the children of noble men. And late theym be inducid and lerned of youthe that in thingis [of noblesse[179]] that apparteynithe and belongithe to theym to lerne, as in excercising[180] of armes and to suche occupacions of worship. These thingis provyded and ordeined oughte not be long delaied, but incontinent stedfastlie to be persevered, that then doubte not but that God, whiche is most mercifulle and allway in every necessite to relief us, despraisithe not the humble and contrite hertis, but that he of his infinite goodenesse wolle accept and take in gree and his grace oure good entent, and shalbe withe us in alle oure gode actis and dedis.

How over gret cost and pomp in clothing shulde be eschewed.

And therfore in witnesse herof eschew and leve the superfluite and excesse of arraie and clothing. And late everie astate use as {80}the worthie Romains did, the whiche, in tyme of affliccions and turmentis or anguisshes by occasion of werres and batailes, used one manere clothing, and anothir maner clothing in tyme of prosperite and felicitee reignyng. And the same maner the ryte and custom of youre adverse partie of Fraunce hathe used, escheweng alle costius arraiementis of clothing, garmentis, and bobauncees, and the usaige of pellure and furres they have expresselie put away. Whiche costues arraymentis and disgising of clothing of so many divers facion used in this youre roiaume, inespecialle amongis youre pore comyners, hathe be one of the gret inconvenientis of the empoverisshing of youre lande, and enforced gret pride, envy, and wrathe amongis hem, whiche hathe holpe broughte them to gret indigence and povertee.

How that gret hurt and inconvenientis have fallen to the roiaume because the creditours have not been duelie paide of here lonys and prestis made to highe sovereins.

Moreover, youre pore comyns, [yn your antecessour dayes,[181]] not paied holy theire duteis for theire lones, prestis of vitailis and othir marchaundise, as by opyn example was often tymes lent and taken to the behofe of youre predecessoure Henry sext, named king, but in sondrie wises be delaied and despende gret part of her goode, or they can nighe her deutees and paiementis, and fayn to suffre to Nota optime. defalke and relese partie of her dutee to receyve the othir part, whiche is the cause of gret charge and hinderaunce of youre peple. And therefore, to voide this inconvenient, righte noble king, withe the discrete avise of youre noble lordis, let youre riche tresours be spradde and put abrode, bothe juellis, vesselle of gold and silver, among youre true subgettis, and inespecialle to the helpe and avauncement of youre conquest, and to the relief of youre indigent and nedie peple. And inespecialle to tho that have lost theire londis, livelode, and {81}goode in the werres, so that the saide tresoure may be put forthe, and late it be set in money to the remedie and socoure of this gret importunyte and necessite, and to the defens of youre roiaume from youre adversaries before specified; for it is saide that [an empyre or[182]] roiaume is bettir without tresoure of golde than without worship, and also bettir it is to lyve a pore life in a riche roiaume in tranquillite and pease than to be riche in a pore roiaume where debate and strife reignithe. And if ye wolle doo thus, every man than in his degree wolle doo the same. And to example of us alle ye [soo[182]] puissaunt and mighetie men of good counceile and stere,[183] every man helpe after his degree.

Nota bene.

How saint Lowis, king of Fraunce, in his testament writen of his owne hande, counceiled his sonne [that] after hym reigned, to cherisshe and favoure the good Citeis and Townes of his lande, and use justice and peas.

And to doo and werke after the blissid counceile of Saint Lowes, king of Fraunce, [who] declared among othir exhortacions and counceile in his testament, the chapiter where he exhorted and comaundid his sonne Phelip that reigned king after hym, that he shulde put and doo alle his diligence that he shulde kepe his peple in pease and justice, and inespecialle to favoure and cherisshe the good Citeis and Townes of his roiaume, and to kepe theym in fraunchise and fredoms soo as they may encrese and lyve puissauntlie, for if they be tendred, that they be of power and mighetie of goode, the ennemies of youre roiaume or of youre adverse partie wol doubt and be ware to take any entreprise ayenst youre noble mageste. And if the adversaries wolle werke ayen the honoure of youre parsone, and the welfare of youre roiaume, youre saide citesins and burgeis and good comyns shalbe of power and of goode courage, and wille withe here bodies and goodes largelie depart to be yoven forto resist them. And, {82}therefore, favoure and forbere the pore peple and namelie the nedie, in signe that ye in youre hertis may bring to mynde and remembre the vengeaunce of hard offensis to this roiaume shewed, and to the recuvere of the worship of the roiaume late lost. And who so hathe not a bodie habille herto, or usage to emploie hym in dedis of armes, or think it long not to hym, as men of religiouste[184] and spirituelle, temporelle men wolde sey, Yet com forthe withe a goode courage, and not by constreint ne in manere of tasque ne of thraldom in tyme to come, but of fre wille withe a bounteuous hert at this tyme that is so expedient and necessarie, as trew Englisshe men shulde doo, every man bring and put forthe of his goodes after that his power is. Now in the worship of God let this be timelie done. It shall now shew, or it may be shewed, who that shalbe founde goode and profitable to the comonwele, or set hym silfe to the employ and fortheraunce of this dede of gret necessite. And who so hathe no power to ley out finaunce, good, or tresoure, yet put his good wille therto. A noble Roiaume of gret price and of noble renomme as thow hast be. Whan God lust to shew thy power, and to be victorious, who may noy the? Shall thou than suffre the to be confunded withe simpler people of reputacion then thow art, withe the whiche ye and youre noble progenitours have conquerid and overcom diverse tymes before this? It is welle to undrestonde that ye have no protectoure, kepar, ne defendour but it come of God, of the whiche he is witnesse and the leder. Som say that the floode of Temmys rennythe beting hier than the londe in stormye seasons. Yet for alle that, withe Goddis mighte and grace, thow art not in the extremitee of tho stormes, ne never mote it come there in suche indigence and necessite.


How that when the Romains were yn that uttermost necessite that bothe mete and money failed hem and here chevalrie destroied, yet tho that [were] left toke goode hert to hem, bothe widowes and othirs, that releved ayen the frauncheis and libertees of Rome.

And where as the Romains fonde theym yn that urgent necessite whan that bothe mete and monney failed theym to susteyne and support theire manhode, neverthelesse noble courage ne goode hope failed not among hem; so that, what time the auncien gentille bloode was wastid in bataile, than they made knightis of theire bounde men, to avaunce theire conquest forto encrese withe theire hoost. And that the goode worshipfulle ladies of Rome, and namely the soroufulle widowes, whiche at that tyme were not usid of custom nothing to pay ne yelde to the souding of men of armes, yet at that tyme whan suche necessite fille, they offred and brought right liberallie of theire juellis and goodis, for the whiche they were right gretly thanked and praised, and after the victorie had welle recompensid and contentid.

Titus Livius. A noble historye of the largesse of Romaynys, how amplye they departed ther godes yn a tym of urgent necessite to make an armee yn to the contree of Auffrique.

Also I rede of a noble example in Titus Livius the .5. booke of the seconde decade of Punica bella, that whan the noble Romains, in the tyme of werris long continued ayen theire adversaries of Aufrik, what by tasques, tailes, and imposicions had for the defens of theire countree habandonned and yoven largelie of theire goodis meveable, that the saide Romains had no more in substaunce to lyve by except theire londes. And it fille soo that the countree of Cisiliens and Champenois hadde doo purvoie for a gret armee and an oost of peple, as well of men for to defende and kepe the see as the lond. And so the comons of Rome had borne so many gret chargis before that they might no more, but if the lordis senatours and counceilours of Rome wolde put too theire hande. And in so moche that the comons of Rome complained and grugged in open market places {84}ayenst the saide gret astatis and governours of Rome, seieng but they wolde sille theire bodies and goodis of the comons, they might pay no more tasque ne taile, the saide governours of Rome, to appaise the peple, saiden they wolde counceile togither and advise a day to purvey for the comon wele, and seiden in conclusion that, were[185] it righte or wrong, we senatours, astatis, and governours must put out largelie of oure goodis, and so yeve example to the comons for the defens of the contree of Cesille and keping of the lande and see Lenius. frome ennemies. And one Lenius, a noble senatoure, pronounced and saide that, forasmoche the senatours have power of goode and rule of the cite in preferraunce of worship and dignite, in like wise it is reason that they here a charge to defende the comons and yeve example to doo as thow woldist comaunde hem to doo; therfore late us, in yevyng the comons example, to morne yn opyn market place before hem, bring forthe the gret part of the golde and silver of coyne and print money that every of us senatours and statis haven, so that none of us reserve and kepe to his propre use but ringis and nouches for to worship his wiffe and children withalle; so that every officer shulde have noo more silver vesselle but for a chapelle and a cupbourde; and every senatoure to kepe but a pounde of coyned silver; and every weddid man havyng wiffe and children to kepe for every of hem an ounce of silver or suche a litille weight; and every citesyn of havyour and degre to reserve only but .vmil. pens of brasse money, and soo that alle othir golde, silver, and brasse money coyned to be brought to the tresorers of the citee. And aftre than the comons of Rome, havyng consideracion that the senatours and governours of Rome of here owne fre voulente haboundonned and put out so habundantlie and largelie of her golde and tresour for the comon wele, to the defense and keping of the see withe shippis and maryneris, to the defense and rebutting of her adversaries, that every of the comons of Rome, after her power and havyoure, of gret courage brought frelie of gold, silver, and othir coyne money to the {85}tresorers and chaungers that were comytted to receyve the money, the prese was so grete that they had no tyme to write the names of the noble citesins, ne forto nombre and telle the quantite and porcion of everie manis part that they broughte; and by this accord and moien the comon profit was soo augmentid that the knightis and men of werre had suffisaunt and more than nedid to defende and kepe the countre of Cecilians and Champenois, and also to be maistris of the see; and alle thingis and ordenaunces that longid to werre was purveied for and put forthe in onure and worke, that alle the senatours counceilours had no nede to tarie lenger for counseiling, but every of hem wente forthe into her countre to dispose for hemsilfe; and in so gret discomfort stode never the Romayns as they did in this urgent necessitee, and was by this moien of largesse repared and brought ayen to worship, prosperite, and welfare. And wolde the mightifulle God that every harde covetouse hert were of suche largesse and distributif of here meveable good and tresoure to the comon wele, as for defending us frome oure adversaries, and keping the see aswelle as the londe, that we may alway be lordis and maistris thereof, as noble governours were before this tyme.

Here endyth thys Epistle, undre correccion, the .xv. day of June, the yeere of Crist .Mliiijclxxv., and of the noble Reyne of kyng Edward the .iiijthe. the .xvne.


G E N E R A L I N D E X.

Acre, 11

Actovylle, Raulyn, 8

Africa, 11, 83

Agamemnon, 20, 63

Agincourt, battle of, 16, 28, 32, 45

Ajax, 63, 64

Alencon, duke of 12;

taken prisoner 18;

his redemption 19

Alexander, king, 7

Anjou, the title of, 23

Appius, 60

Appulton, John, his letter to sir John Fastolfe, lvi

Arms (to do) in lists to the utterance, or to certain points, 77

Armonac, earl of, 8, 28, 37

Arras, treaty of, xlix

Arthur, king, 2, 9

—— of Breteyn, 40

Astrology depreciated, viii, 50

Authors quoted:—

de Auriga, Alanus, his Quadrilogus, 25, 27, 33;

Preface iii, vi, vii, ix

Austyn, of the City of God, 57;

—— of Free will, 50;

Bartholomeus, de Proprietatibus Rerum, 2;

Basset, Peter, liii;

Boetius de Consolatione, 3, 21, 50, 52;

Cato, 25, 62, 69;

Chartier, see Auriga

Cicero, of Divination, 50;

—— see Tullius;

Cristina, Arbre de Batailes, 6 bis, 27, 30, 31, 54 (her biography ib.);

de Diceto, Radulphus, Ymago historiarum, 23;

Dudley's Tree of Commonwealth, vii;

Froissart, 40;

Gildas, 51;

Governance of Princes,liv;

Jeremye the prophet, 79;

Jerome, saint, 76;

Job, 6, 52, 58;

Josephus, liber antiquitatum, 51;

Kayus son, ii, 1;

Livius (Titus, 26, 51, 53, 83;

Machabeus, 42;

Malexander, Walter, 22, 26;

Nennius, 62;

Novius Marcellus, 57;

Orosius de Ormesta Mundi, 51;

Ovid, 26, 33;

Paralipomenon, 56;

Philip, the Acts of King, (the Philippiados), 13;

Pliny the younger, ii;

du Premier-Faict, Laurence, li;

Ptolomy, Centilogie, 51;

de Regimine Principum, liv;

Socrates, 69;

Tree of Batailes, iii, liv;

Tullius, 25, 57 ter, 58 bis, 59, 60, 62, 70;

Vegetius, his book of Chivalry (de Arte Militari), 21, 29, 55;

Preface, p. vi.;

Wallensis, Commune loquium, 57;

Worcestre, William of, l, 1

Averaunces, 28


Baldwin archbishop of Canterbury, 10

Basset, Peter, an historical writer, liii

Bastille of St. Anthoine, victualling of, xi, lx, 68

Beauchamp, sir William, 15

Bedford, John duke of, 15, 17;

wins the battle of Vernelle 18;

and conquers the county of Maine 19;

other victories 28;

statutes of 31;

eulogy on 44;

defended Paris 47;

his payment of wages 72

Benevolence, a voluntary taxation, xvii, xxi

Bituitus, king, 27

Boecius, 52

Boke of Noblesse, its scope and intention, i;

probable date of its composition, ib.;

abstract of its contents, i-xvii;

the question of its authorship, l;

other books of the same character, liv;

the MS. described, lv

Bonnet, Honoré, iv

Bordeaux, 42

Bougée, battle of, 17, 44

Bourbon, the bastard of, xxxi, xxxvii, xxxviii, 28

—— the cardinal of, xxxi, xxxvii, xxxix

Brennus, 10

Bretagne, Charles duke of, 13

—— Giles son of the duke of, ii, 5

—— the duke of, protected by king Edward, xl, xli

Bretailles, Louis de, xlii

Bretigny, peace of, 37, 40, 49

Buchan, earl of, 17

Burgoyne, duke of, 7, 8

—— marshal of, 17

Burgundy, Charles duke of, i;

his designation of le Hardi, x;

brother-in-law both to king Louis and king Edward, xxviii;

interviews with king Edward, xxiv, xxix, xxxiii;

character of, xxv;

suspected by the English, xxx, xlvi;

his truce with France, xlvii

—— John duke of, his murder, xxxviii

—— Margaret duchess of, xxiii

Caen, won by assault, 12, 36;

rescue of, 28;

parliament at, 31

Calais, siege of, 13, 36, 45

Camillus, 53

Canute (Knowt), 2

Carew, the baron of, 15

Carthage, wars of the Romans with, 26, 61, 65

Cato, 61

Caulx, Pais de, the destruction of, lvi

Caxton, works of:—

Book of the ordre of Chevalrye or Knyghthode, liv;

Fayttes of Armes and of Chyvallrye, vi;

Curial, vii;

Tully on Old Age, li;

Dicts and Sayings of the Philosophers, xliii

Cerdic, 2

Champenois, 83

Chandos, Sir John, 15, 37, 46

Charles V. of France, purchased fortresses from the English, xxxii;

mentioned, 33, 37

Charles VII. his re-conquest of Normandy ii, iii;

his secretary Alain Chartier vii;

mentioned 3, 25

Charles le bien amé, 25

Charles le simple, 39

Charles the sage, 40

Chartier; see Authors

Chester, Randolfe earl of, 10

Cheyne, sir John, xxxii, xxxiii, xliii

Childermas day, xxxv

Chirburgh, 12

Chivalry, synonymous with Noblesse, xv

Christine, dame; see Passy and Pisan

Church, oppressed in Normandy, xiii, 74

Citizens, their contributions to the war, xxi;

their experience in the campaign, xlv

Clarence, George duke of, his retinue and their

pay, xx, xxiii, xxxii, xxxviii

Clarence, Thomas duke of, 18;

eulogy on, 44

Clekyn, sir Barthilmew, 15

Cleret, Pierre, xxxiii

Clergy oppressed in Normandy, xiii, 74;


Clothing, cost and pomp in, 79

Commines, Philippe de, the historian, xvii, xxv;

employed by king Louis, xxviii, xxx, xxxvi;

dressed like his master, xxxvii;

characteras an historian, xli

Commons, or people, termed "bestial", 77, 78

Conquerors, duties of, 21

Cornwall, language of, 2

Countour, a commissioner of taxes, xv

Courtenay, sir Hugh, 15

—— sir Philip, ib.

Cravant, battle of, 17, 18, 28, 44

Cressy, battle of, 12, 36

Cyprus, king of, 10

Cyrus, his gardens at Sardis, 69

Damascus, 10

David king of Scots, 13

Derby, earl of, 13

Dieppe, 5

Dorset, Edmond earl of, 28

—— Thomas earl of, 15

Douglas, earl of, 18

Dove, the omen of the, xxiv, xlii

Dress; see Clothing

Dudley, Edmonde, his "Tree of Common Wealth", vii

Dudley, William, xxxi, xxxii

Durham ("Deram upon the marchis of Scotland"), 13

Dynham, John lord, xxii

Education, military, 76

Edmond Ironside, 10

Edward the First, 11

Edward the Third, 3, 12, 14, 33, 77;

he made great alliances, 40

Edward prince of Wales, 4, 13, 14;

received homage as duke of Guienne, 37, 43

Edward the Fourth, his prosperous state in his second reign, i;

prepares to invade France xvii;

salutes the generous widow xxi;

lands at Calais xxvi;

interviews with the duke of Burgundy xxiv, xxix;

with king Louis xxxvi;

character of xxv, xli, xlv;

his personal appearance xxxviii;

ruin of his political schemes and death xlviii

Elkyngton, John, xxxii

English, their character as soldiers xxvi;

beat a double or treble number of Frenchmen, 28

Ennius, 61, 62

Eu, earl of, 12

Exeter, Thomas duke of 28, 68;

captain of Paris, xi, xii

Fabius, 59, 60, 62

Fabricius, 55, 60

Faliste, 53

Fastolfe, sir John, "myne autor", i;

anecdotes and sayings of, v, x, xi, xiv;

his books of accompt, xi;

captain of the bastille of St. Anthoine, ib.;

his connection with "The Boke of Noblesse", l;

his services in France, li;

mentioned, 15, 16, 19, 28 ter, 31, 64, 68

Fauconberg, lord, 28;

taken prisoner, iii, 5

Felton, sir Thomas, 15

Ferranus king of Spain, 10

Fizar, battle, 46

Florence, 53

Formigny, the battle of, viii, 42

Fougeres, the capture of, iii, 5

France, oppression of the English subjects in, vii;

its sufferings from quartering soldiers, xii;

narrative of the invasion of in 1475, xvii-xliv;

difficulties of an English invasion of, xxvii;

costly dress put away in, 80

Franklin, character of, xv

Frenchmen, if double or treble in number, beaten by Englishmen, 28

Fulke earl of Anjou, 10, 23

Garnett, Richard, xxi

Garter, the order of the, 46;


Gascony, the title of, 24

Geoffrey Plantagenet, 2, 23, 52

Gloucester, Humphrey duke of, eulogy on, 45

—— Richard duke of, his retinue and their pay, xx, xxiii, xxxii;

affects to lead the English chivalry, xli

—— Robert Clare, earl of, 10

Gourney, Mathew, lix, 15

Grey, Thomas, his retainer as the king's custrel, xx

Guienne, duchy of, treaties respecting, 34

Guisnes, castle of, xxiii

the Hagge, 12

Hannibal, 50, 59, 67

Hardy man, definition of, x

Harflete, siege of, 15

Harington, sir Richard, 28

Hastings, Hugh lord, 15

—— sir Ralph, 15

—— William lord, accepts pensions both from Burgundy and France, xxxiii, xxxviii

Hay, sir Gilbert, liv

Hector, 20

Henry the First, 10

Henry the Second, 24

Henry the Fifth, 4;

how he conquered Normandy and France, 15;

his marriage, 17;

wins the battle of Agincourt, 28, 32;

"that victorious prince", 39, 41;

praise of him and his brethren, 43;

his historians, liii

Henry VI. his coronation at Paris, 19;

"the innocent prince", 39

Hercules, 21

Homeldon hill, battle of, 18

Howard, lord, xxiii, xxviii, xxx, xxxvi;

left as hostage with the French, xxxii, xli, xliii, xlvi

Hubert bishop of Salisbury, 10

Huntingdon, John earl of, 16

Jerusalem, 52

Joachym king of Juda, 79

John, king, 33

John king of France taken prisoner and

brought to England, 13, 14, 36, 75

Judas Machabeus, 42

Kedecause, journey of, 28

Kent, Edmond earl of, 35, 36

Knollys, sir Robert, 15

Knowt (Canute), 2

Kyriell, sir Thomas viii, 42

Lancaster, Henry duke of, 43;

"a chief auctour and foundour in law of armes," 77

Law, the practice of, not worthy of those born to arms, xv, 77;

choice of officers of, 78

Lelius, 61, 62

Lenius, 84

Library of sir John Paston, lix;

of Humphrey duke of Gloucester, 45

Lion, the emblem of knightly valour, and particularly of the royal house of England, ii;

men of war should resemble, 4, 22, 46, 47, 48

L'Isle Adam, Jean de Villiers seigneur de, biogr. note on, xi; 8, 68

Loans, xvi. 80

Lombards, 32

Louis, Saint, counsel to his son, v. 8, 11, 42, 81

Louis XI. abetted the Earl of Warwick, xvii;

character, xxv;

his reception of King Edward's defiance, xxvii;

kept no herald, xxx;

his "disguised apparel", xxxvii;

his timidity, xliii;

anecdotes of xli et seq.

Lucius Brutus, 71

Lucius Paulus, 60, 67

Lucius Valerius, 52

Lumley, John lord, lv

Lysander, 69

Maine, county of, the conquest of, 19, 45;

the title of, 23, 32;

revenues of 68


Manly man, distinguished from the (fool-)hardy man, 65

Mansel, an esquire, iii, 5

March, earl of, 15, 28, 45

Marcus Actilius, 65

Marcus Marcellus, 67

Margaret of Austria, her matrimonial alliances, xlviii

Maude, the empress, 23, 52

Montgomery, sir N., 19

Morhier, sir Simon, iii, 5

Morton, doctor, xxv, xxxi, xxxii

Montreuil (Motreaw), 8

Mountgomery, sir Thomas, xxiii, xxv, xxxii, xxxiii, xlvi

Narbonne, the vicomte de, xlvi

Nazar, battle of, 14

Nestor, 63, 64

Neuss, the siege of, xxv

Neville, lord, 15

Noblesse, identical with Chivalry, xv;

and with Honour, liv.;

See Boke of Noblesse

Normandy, the title of, 22;

arms of, 23;

the wretched state of, 72;

the clergy oppressed, 74;

its re-conquest by the French, ii, iii, viii

Oldhall, sir William, 19

Orleans; bastard of, 28

—— duke of, 7, 8

—— siege of, 28

Paris, 7, 8, 19;

siege of, 47;

rebellion in, 68;

bastille of St. Anthony, xi, lx, 68;

in the hands of the English, xi

Parliament, the English, as described by Commines, xvii

Passy, dame Christine of, iv;

biographical note upon, 54

Paston, sir John, his library, lix

Peace, the treaty of, in 1475, xxxviii

Philip, king of France, 8

Philip Dieu-donné, 10, 33, 34, 40

Philip of Valois, 12

Picquigny, the royal interview at, xxxvi

de Pisan, Christine, vi

Plantagenet, 2, 23, 52

Poitiers, battle of, 13, 75

Pompeus, 75

Pont l'Arche, the capture of iii, 5

Popham, sir John, 19

Poynings, lord, 28

Prophecies, the English always provided with, xxxix, 50

Publius Decius, 64

Pyrrhus, 55, 60

Radcliff, sir John, 48

Rais, lord, 15

Rempston, sir Thomas, 28

Respublica, 68

Richard emperor of Almaine, 11

Richard the First, 10

Riviers, Anthony earl of, his embassies to the duke of Burgundy, xxv;

his connections with royalty, xxvi. See Scales

Robert, king of Jerusalem, 10

Rochedaryon, 13

Rollo, duke of Normandy, 39

Romans, their wars with Carthage, 26;

the largess of, to make an army to Africa, 83

Rome, 52

Rotherham, archbishop, xxxiii, xxxviii, xxxix

Rouen, 5

Roveraye, battle of, 28, 44

Runcyvale, 15

St. Cloud, battle of, 8

St. Leger, sir Thomas, xxxi, xxxiii, xxxvi

St. Pol, Louis de Luxembourg comte de, brother-in-law to king Louis, and uncle to queen Elizabeth Wydville, xxviii;

his temporising and treacherous conduct, xxix;

circumstances of his ruin, xxxiv, xl, xliv

Salisbury, Thomas earl of, 17, 19, 28


Scales, lord, 19;

see Riviers

Sciences, the, vii, 45

Scipio, 61, 62

Scipio Africanus and Scipio Asianus, 66

Scluse, battle of, 12, 36

Senlys, 47

Sensuality, evils of, 22, 33, 52

Sessions, 77, 78

Shire-days, holding of, xv, 77, 78

Shrewsbury, 18

Shrewsbury, earl of, 28 bis

Sicily, 83

Smert, John, Garter king of arms, xxvii

Soldiers, on the just payment of, 71

Somerset, Edmond duke of, 28

—— John duke of, 28

Stanley, lord, xxiii, xxviii, xxx, xxxi

Suffolk, William earl of, 17, 28, 45

Surie (Syria), 10, 11

Tancarville, earl of, 12

Thames, the flood of, 82

Tours, 5, 25;

truce of, ii

"Tree of Batailes," a popular work, iii;

its author, editions, and manuscripts, iv;

quoted, vii

Troy, 2, 20, 43, 64

Truces with France, the history of, 34;

truce of Tours, ii

Tryvet, sir John, 15

Tunis, 11

Tunstall, sir Richard, xx, xxiii, xxxii

Ulixes, 21

d'Urfé, seigneur, xxxiii

Valerius Corvinus, 70

Vernelle, battle of, 18, 19, 28, 32 bis, 44

Virtues, the iiij principalle cardinall, 7

Wales, language of, 2

Warwick, Thomas earl of, 37

William the Conqueror, 2, 10, 22

Willoughby, Robert lord, 17, 28

Winchester, bailiffs of, their letter (to sir John

Fastolfe), lvii

Worcestre, William of, the secretary of sir John Fastolfe, l;

his supposed Acta d'ni Joh. Fastolff, lii

Wyer, Robert, liv

York, Richard duke of, 41.


G L O S S A R I A L I N D E X.

admonestementis 79

afferaunt 43

aiel 35

amercie 78

approwementis 65

assailours 9

astonyed 2

atwix (betwixt) 48

avaunt 75

aventure 33

aveyn 69

baleese 54

barnage (baronage) 55

batellous 63

be (by) 9

beforce (by force) 31

beforne 70

benecute 70

benevolence xvii, xxi, xxii

bestialle 77, 78

bethout (without) 7 et passim

bethyn (within) 3 et passim

bobauncees 80

bonchief 21

chevalrie 66, 76, 83

clepid 27, 31, 40, 55

congie 30

convenable 74, 75

costius, costues (costly) 80

cote-armer 18

cotes of armes 20

countour xv

covyn 54

croiserie 10, 11

custrell xx

defalke 31, 72

defend (drive away) 9

deliver (agile) 76

deliver (to fulfil a challenge in arms) 77

depart (part with) 81, 83 side note

detrussed 65, detroussé, unbound

devoire 9, 56

dissimiled (dissembled) 30,

dissimuled 41

dissimulacion 40

dulled 2

egallie (equally) 21

embrace (to take part, or patronise) xv, 77

empeshement 35

enfamyned 13

entendement 20

entreprennour 64

entreprinses and entreprises, 6, 21, 29

ering 70

at erst 6

escarmisshes 13

esy (little or scarcely) 72,

esilie (scarcely), 73

ewred 43

fauten 60

feernesse (for feersnesse?) 4, 20

fellir (more fell) 64

fille (fell) 21, 23, 27, 73, 83

finaunce 9, 14, 19, 29, 33, 65

fole-hardiesse 63, see hardy

fraunchise 81


fructufulle 56

grene age 76

hardiesse 29

hardy (or fool-hardy) man, 65

haunting arms 3, 6, 22, 77

havyour 84

herbers (of soote smyllis of flowris and herbis of divers colours) 70

hethynesse 46

historier 25, 43

hostied 13

hubes 68

infortune 42, 50

inure 62

joieuest (most joyful) 70

jorney (military expedition) 47

jupardie 65, 70, 77

labourage 65, 69, 70

lifelode 32, 49, 32, 73, 80

lust (verb) 82

lyes (leash) 16

manassed 73

manly man 65

mantelle 20

masty hound 16

meintenaunce 78

menage 69

messangiers 45

moien 85

mondeyn 70

mow (shall mow endure) 69

muys 50

namelie (especially) 82, 83

noblesse xv. liv

nompower 30

nouches 84

noy 82

obeisaunce and obediaunce 17, 30, 59

obeissauntes 30, 47

onure, 85

oost (host) 27, 28, 31, 32, 64, 71

osteyng 11

ovyr hand 65

paast, 6

paissauntes (peasants) 72, 73

patised 73

payneymys 10

paynym 75

peine hem (take pains) 31

perveaunce 40

piller (thief) 31, 72

plenerlie 37

practik (singler) 77, 78

practique of law 77

print money, 84

puissaunt 20, 23, 26, 41, 43, 46, 61

purveonds 68

puttithe away (plur.) 79

quaiers (of books) lix, 79

raise 40. Chaucer says of his Knight, In Lettowe had he reysed and in Russe.

ravyne 72, 73

recordacion 3

renomme 32

revaled 3, 9, 11, 74

rightwisnesse 56

rothir or sterne 58

servage 71

sille (sell) 84

sleuth (sloth) 6

soude 33, 72;

soulde 29, 40

soudeours 16, 68, 71;

sowdieris 30

soudeyng 29;

souding, 83

souneth (threaten) 48

synguler (personal) 7, 29, 55


tailis 73, 83, 84

take in gree 79

tasques 73, 83, 84

terrein 69

tilieng (tilling) 70

tofore (before) 60

to morne (tomorrow) 84

trespasseinte 11

trespassement 41, 43

umbre 3, 4, 25, 33, 41

viellars 64

vileyned 74

voulenté 84

vyfnes 4

wanhope 74

well (easy), "it is well to undrestonde" 82

werreied (made war) 10

wited (considered) 55

yen (eyen or eyes) 66

yoven (given) 81


[1] Giles brother to Francis I. duke of Bretagne. Having differences with his brother respecting his apanage, he was with the duke's consent arrested by king Charles VII.; and, perhaps in consequence of the English taking his part, he was put to death in the year 1450. His fate was commemorated in the "Histoire lamentable de Gilles seigneur de Chateaubriand et de Chantocé, prince du sang de France et de Bretagne, estranglé en prison par les ministres d'un favory." See Daru's Histoire de Bretagne, 1826, vol. ii. pp. 287 et seq.

[2] Sir Simon Morhier is one of the commissioners named for concluding a treaty with "our adversary of France," dated 28 July 1438. (Rymer, x. 709.) Monstrelet relates that at the battle of Rouvray, commonly called the battle of the Herrings, which took place during the siege of Orleans in 1428, the only man of note slain on the English side was one named Bresanteau, nephew to Simon Morhier provost of Paris.

[3] I do not find the name of this esquire in the memoirs of the Mansel family, privately printed in 1850, by William W. Mansell, esq. There were Mansels in Bretagne as well as in England.

[4] A description of the taking of Pont de l'Arche will be found in the Histoire du roy Charles VII., by Alain Chartier. He states that from a hundred to six score Englishmen were there either killed or taken prisoners: "Entre les autres y fut prins le sire de Faucquembergue, qui d'aventure y estoit venu la nuict." This was William Neville, lord Fauconberg, a younger son of the first earl of Westmerland, and uncle to the King-making earl of Warwick. Dugdale describes his imprisonment on the authority of letters patent (30 Hen. VI. p. 1, m. 24) whereby he was granted some compensation: "Being sent ambassador into Normandy, to treat of peace and truce betwixt both realms, he was most perfidiously seized upon by the French, and kept prisoner: in respect of which sufferings he had in 30 Hen. VI. an assignation of 4108l. 18s. 10¼d. then in arrears to him for his pay whilst he was governor of Roxburgh, to be received out of the customs of wool, cloths, skins, lead, and other commodities, arising in the ports of Boston, Kingston upon Hull, and Ipswich." In 32 Hen. VI. (1453-4) he was still prisoner in France. (Baronage of England, i. 308, 309.)

[5] Fougères was a strongly fortified town, and was considered one of the keys of Bretagne. It was taken by surprise, in the night of the 23-24 of March 1448, by François de Surienne, on the part of the English: an event which was followed by very important results, for Charles VII. made it an excuse for resuming hostilities in order to protect the duke of Bretagne as his vassal and ally: the Constable of France Artur de Richemont, who was the duke's uncle, (but who had been opposed to the arrest of his nephew Giles,) recovered the captured town; the duke invaded Lower Normandy, whilst the king of France entered the upper province, and by a rapid series of successes they within fifteen months drove the English out of the country.

[6] Honoré Bonnet was prior of Salon in Provence, as is shown by his own dedication of the book to Charles VI. written during the sovereignty of Louis II. of Anjou in Provence, that is, from 1384 to 1390. In some of the early editions of the book the author's name was altered to Bonnor: its title is "Larbre des batailles. Sensuyt larbre des batailles qui traicte de plusieurs choses comme de leglise. Et aussi des faictz de la guerre. Et aussi cōment on se doyt gouuerner. Paris, 1493." folio. Also Paris, 1505, 4to. Among the Royal collection of Manuscripts in the British Museum (20 C. VIII.) is a magnificent copy in large folio, and another, in quarto, has been recently purchased (Addit. MS. 22,768.) Respecting others at Paris see the work of M. Paulin Paris on "Les Manuscrits Français de la Bibliothèque du Roi," vol. v. pp. 101, 307.

On the fly-leaf of the Royal MS. is the following inscription in an old hand, the writer of which avowedly followed the note at p. 54 of the present volume:

L'Arbre des Battailles compose par Honore Bonet Prieur de Sallon en Prouuence.

Note yt in some Authors this Booke is termed Dame Christine of ye tree of Battayles, not that she made yt; But bicause she was a notable Benefactour to Learned men and perchaunce to ye autor of this Booke. And therefore diuers of them sette furthe their Bookes under her name. See ye Booke of Noblesse in englishe and Chrystines Life amongste ye autors de claris mulieribus as I remēber.

On the title-page are the autograph inscriptions of two of the former owners of the volume, Sum Humfridi LLoyd and Lumley: and at the end is inscribed Iste liber constat Joh'i Gamston' Generoso. It seems not improbable that the entry above extracted was written by Lord Lumley.

[7] At the end of the life of Saint Louis by Geoffroi de Beaulieu, in the Historiens de la France, tome xx. p. 26, (1840, folio,) will be found the Instructions of king Louis to his Son, in their vernacular language. A copy of them, headed "Ce sont les enseignemens que monsr sainct Loys fist a son filz Charles roy de France," occurs in the MS. at the College of Arms which contains many things about sir John Fastolfe. (MS. Arundel XXVI. fol. ii v.)

[8] Vegetius was a great authority with the writers of the middle ages. Monstrelet commences the prologue to the second volume of his chronicles by citing the book of "un trèsrenommé philosophe nommé Végèce, qu'il feist de la vaillance et prudence de chevalerie." The treatise of Vegetius de Re Militari had been translated into French about the year 1284, by Jean de Meun, one of the authors of the Roman de la Rose. In the fifteenth century it was one of the principal sources of a book entitled "Lart de cheualerie selon Vegece; lequel trait de la maniere que les princes doiuent tenir au fait de leurs guerres et batailles." This was printed at Paris by Anthoine Verard in 1488; and it was, at the command of king Henry VII. translated by Caxton, and printed by him at Westminster in the following year, as "The Fayttes of Armes and of Chyvallrye," which (he states in his colophon,) "Christian of Pise made and drew out of the book named Vegecius de Re Militari, and out of the Arbre of Battles." Now, Christina de Pisan was a poetess: and it is not likely that she had more to do with this treatise on the art of war than the "dame Christine" of our present author had with the Arbre des Batailles. Indeed it is probable that the two misappropriations are connected in their origin. On the actual productions of Christine de Pisan, which furnished other works to our first English printer, see the description by M. Paulin Paris of "Les Manuscrits Français de la Bibliothèque du Roi," vol. iv. 184, vol. v. 148-185, vi. 359, 399: and an "Essai sur les Ecrits Politiques de Christine de Pisan, suivi d'une Notice Litteraire et de Pièces Inédites. Par Raimond Thomassy, 1838." 8vo. pp. 200.

[9] Alain Chartier was a writer both in prose and poetry. There are separate editions of several of his works: and a collected volume of them was edited by Andrew du Chesne in 1617. An English translation of his "Curial" was printed by Caxton without date. See an account of various manuscripts of the works of Chartier given by M. Paulin Paris in his vol. vi. pp. 385-387, vol. vii. pp. 251-254.

[10] The personages speaking in the Quadrilogue are France, Le Peuple, Le Chevalier, and Le Clergie, to whose conversation l'Acteur, or the Author, occasionally interposes some remarks. Le Chevalier is also the Gendarmerie, and described as being identical with the Estat de Noblesse—an identity which is thus maintained at the beginning of the reign of Henry the Eighth:—"in all the Chevalrie of this realme, wherein be intended all Dukes, Erles, Barons, Knightes, Esquires, and other Gentlemen by office or aucthoritie." I quote this from The Tree of Common Wealth, by Edmonde Dudley, (written in 1509 or 1510,) printed for the Brotherhood of the Rosy Cross, at Manchester, 1859, p. 18.

[11] "Magister Alanus de Auriga. Id est compilam de libro suo." Sidenote in p. 27.

[12] This battle, from which the final loss of Normandy ensued, was fought at Formigny, between Charenton and Bayeux, on the 15th of April 1450. Sir Thomas Kyriell, who was there taken prisoner, was a veteran warrior of Agincourt, and had for some years been lieutenant of Calais. By a writ of privy seal dated the 12th August 1451, Henry VI. granted the sum of 5000 crowns and lent another 5000, out of the bonds due from the duke of Orleans, in order to provide for the ransom of sir Thomas Kyriell. (Rymer, xi. 287.) Sir Thomas was elected a Knight of the Garter at the close of the reign of Henry the Sixth, Feb. 8, 1460-1, and beheaded by the victorious Yorkists on the 18th of the same month.

[13] This passage was an abridgment from one in Le Quadrilogue Invectif of Alain Chartier: which is as follows: "Toutes anciennes escriptures sont plaines de mutations, subversions, et changemens de Royaulmes et des Principaultez. Car comme les enfans naissent et croissent en hommes parfaitz, et puis declinent à vieillesse et à mort; ainsi ont les Seigneuries leur commencement, et leur accroissement, et leur declin. Où est Ninive la grant cité, qui duroit trois journées de chemin? Qu'est devenue Babiloine, qui fut edifiée de matiere artificieuse pour plus durer aux hommes, et maintenant est habitée de serpens? Que dira l'en de Troye la riche et tres renommée? Et de Ylion le chastel sans per, dont les portes furent d'ivoire, et les colonnes d'argent; et maintenant à peine en reste le pié des fondemens, que les haulx buissons forcloent de la veue des hommes? Thebes qui fut fondée de Cadmus le fils de Agenor, et la plus peuplée de dessus la terre pour son temps: en laquelle part pourroit en trouver tant de reliques de son nom, que gens se puissent monstrer nez de sa semence? Lacedemoine, dont les loix vindrent à diverse nations, desquelles encores nous usons, ne peut oncques tant estroictement garder les loix de Licurgus le doicturier, qui furent faictes pour sa perpetuation, que sa vertu ne soit extaincte et aneantie. Athenes fontaine de sapience, et source des haultes doctrines de philosophie, n'est elle pas en subversion, et les ruisseaulx de son escole taris et asseichez? Carthage la batailleresse, qui domptait les elephans à batailler, et qui jadis fut tant redoubtée aux Romains, où a elle tourné sa grant glorie, sinon en la cendre du feu où elle fut arse et embrasée? Mais parlons de Romme, qui fut derreniere en souveraine majesté, et excellente en vertu. Et notons bien la parolle de Lucan, qui dit que de elle mesme par sa pesanteur elle decheut. Car les trops pesans faiz font les plus griefues cheoistes. Par ceste maniere chascune à sa tour et en son ordre se changent, rebaissent, ou soubvertissent les eureuses fortunes, et le bruit des Royaulmes. Ainsi comme la Monarchie du monde et la dignité du Souverain Empire fut jadis translatée des Assiriens aux Persans, des Persans aux Grecz, des Grecz aux Rommains, et des Rommains es mains des François et des Germains."

[14] It was in this sense that the duke of Burgundy was called Charles le Hardi, which was equivalent to the modern le Temeraire, that is, not only Bold, but Rash. We find that the author of L'Arbre des Batailles discusses in his third book, chapter viii., the various causes from which "est ung chevalier bien hardy:" and he asserts them to be many: "Car premierement ung chevalier sera hardy pour avoir et conquerir vaine gloire et l'honneur de ce monde: pour ce seulement quil voit les hardis honnourez et le couhars dishonnourez. Ung autre chevalier sera hardy pour avoir peur de perdre honneur et proffit de son seigneur, et pour peur destre prins sil estoit couhart. La tierce par usaige; car se ung chevalier a grant temps porté le harnois il seulement qui scaurra bien l'usaige prandra ardement in ce quon ne parle contre lun sil faisoit le contraire. Aultre chevalier y a qui est hardy pour ce quil sent son harnois et armeures estre bons et de bonne espreuve. Aultre chevalier y a qui est hardy pour son cappitaine quil scet estre bien sage et bien fortuné. Aultre chevalier y a qui est hardy par droicte fureur, et par droicte coulere hayreuse. Aultre chevalier y a qui est hardy par ignorance: car il est si simple quil ne scet que est vertu de force: mais faite ainsi comme il voit faire au plus avance. Aultre chevalier y a qui est hardy par couvoitise de gaigner richesses et non pour aultre chose. Or saiches maintenant comme en toutes ces hardiesses na vertu si non en cellui qui est hardy de droicte congnoissance et de droit scavoir, et ayt la voulente entendue a vertu et a justice et ferme voulenté d'attendre et de soustenir toute chose deue et possible par la vertu de force. Et te souffise de ceste vertu quant à present."

[15] Jean de Villiers, seigneur de l'Isle Adam et de Villiers le Bel, having joined the party of the duke of Burgundy, was by his influence made Maréchal of France in 1418. He was arrested by the duke of Exeter at Paris in 1420, and released by the duke of Bedford in 1422, at the request of Philip duke of Burgundy. By duke Charles he was highly favoured, made one of the first knights of the order of the Golden Fleece, and captain of Paris when the duke of Bedford left that city in 1430. He was killed during a popular commotion at Bruges in 1437. See his life in Anselme's Histoire Genealogique, 1723, vii. 10.

[16] The account which Monstrelet gives of this insurrection entirely corresponds with that of our author. It is as follows:

"En apres le duc d'Excestre, qui estoit capitaine de Paris, pour certaines causes qui à ce le meurent, feit prendre en icelle ville le seigneur de l'Isle Adam par aucuns de ses Anglois: pour laquelle prinse s'assemblerent jusques a mille hommes ou plus du commun de Paris, pour le rescourre à ceux qui le menoient en la bastille S. Anthoine. Mais tantost ledit duc d'Excestre à tout six vingts combattans, dont il y avoit la plus grand partie archiers, alla frapper en eux et faire tirer les dessusdits archiers au travers desdites communes: pourquoy tant par la cremeur dudict traict, comme par le commandement qu'il leur feit de par le Roy, se retrahirent assez brief en leurs maisons: et ledit seigneur de l'Isle Adam fut (comme dit est) mis prisonnier, et y demoura durant la vie du roy Henry d'Angleterre, lequel l'eust faict mourir, ce n'eust esté la requeste du duc de Bourgongne." (Chroniques de Monstrelet, vol. i. chap. ccxxxviii.)

[17] It is very remarkable how entirely these statements correspond with some passages of Commines, (book iv. chap. xviii.) in which he describes the conduct of tyrannical princes, and the way in which France especially suffered from quartering soldiers. "To the common people they leave little or nothing, though their taxes be greater than they ought to be; nor do they take any care to restrain the licentiousness of their soldiers, who are constantly quartered throughout the country without paying anything, and commit all manner of excesses and insolencies, as everybody knows; for, not contented with the ordinary provisions with which they are supplied, they beat and abuse the poor country people, and force them to bring bread, wine, and other dainties, on purpose for their eating; and if the goodman's wife or daughter happens to be good-looking, his wisest course is to keep her out of their sight. And yet, where money is abundant, it would be no difficult matter to prevent this disorder and confusion, by paying them every two months at furthest, which would obviate the pretence of want of pay, and leave them without excuse, and cause no inconvenience to the prince, because his money is raised punctually every year. I say this in compassion to this kingdom, which certainly is more oppressed and harassed in quartering soldiers than any in all Europe."

[18] This word, or "obeissauntis," which was used in the same sense, may be taken as the original reading of the erasure in p. 73, in the place of "predecessours," which is an alteration for the worse.

[19] Chaucer says of his Franklin—

At sessions there was he lord and sire,

Full often time he was Knight of the shire,

A Sheriff had he been, and a Countour.

The countour—a term which has been involved in some doubt, was probably a commissioner of taxes, who had to return his accompt to the royal exchequer.

[20] i.e. take a factious or unjust part.

[21] Sir Harris Nicolas, in his memoir on the Scrope and Grosvenor Roll (ii. 347), has remarked "the slighting manner in which the profession of the law is mentioned, in comparison with that of arms," in the deposition of sir William Aton. Speaking of sir Henry Scrope, that witness stated that he was come of noble and gentle ancestry, and yet by the consent of his parents was put to the law, and became the king's justice, but nevertheless used in his halls, on his beds, in windows, and on plate the arms of Azure, a bend or. At a much later date (1542) sir Edmund Knightley, though a younger brother and a serjeant at law, is represented in a full suit of armour at Fawsley, co. Northampton. His epitaph commemorates both his gentilitial and his professional merits:

Natus erat claro de stemmate et ordine equestri,

Qui fuit et gentis gloria magna suæ;

Legis erat patriæ gnarus, compescere lites

Assuetus vulgi et jurgia seva lenis.

But, whilst these passages are certainly indicative of the prevailing chivalric sentiments, it is still to be remembered that very absurd class-prejudices exist in all ages, and they must not always be taken in proof of the general opinions of society. It is indisputable that, from the Conquest downwards, the "younger brothers" of some of our greatest families have been bred to the law, and the inns of court were always the resort of young men of noble birth.

[22] The notices which the chroniclers Fabyan and Hall give of the first Benevolence will be found in a subsequent page.

[23] Commines gives the following somewhat satirical account of an English parliament. "The king was not able to undertake such an affair without calling his parliament, which is in the nature of our Three Estates, and, consisting for the most part of sage and religious men, is very serviceable and a great strengthening to the king. At the meeting of this parliament the king declares his intention, and desires aid of his subjects, for no money is raised in England but upon some expedition into France or Scotland, and then they supply him very liberally, especially against France. Yet the kings of England have this artifice when they want money, and have a desire to have any supplies granted,—to raise men, and pretend quarrels with Scotland or France, and, having encamped with their army for about three months, to disband it, return home, and keep the remainder of the money for their own private use; and this trade king Edward understood very well, and often practised it."

[24] At that time the parliament first granted the number of 20,000 archers, which was afterwards reduced to 13,000. Rot. Parl. v. 230, 231.

[25] Rotuli Parl. vi. 4.

[26] Ibid. p. 6.

[27] Ibid. p. 39.

[28] The parliament re-assembled accordingly on the 9th of May 1474: and during that session, on the 18th of July, the commons again granted to the king a quinsisme and a disme (a fifteenth and a tenth), and the further sum of 51,147l. 4s.d. in full payment of the wages of the 13,000 archers, who, notwithstanding the condition of the former grants, were still maintained in readiness for the proposed expedition. In making these votes, the commons recited, as before, the king's intention to set outward a mighty army, "as dyvers tymes by the mouth of your chancellors for the tyme beyng hath to us been declared and shewed;" and it was now ordained "that, if the said viage roiall hold not afore the feste of seynt John Baptist the year of our Lord M cccclxvj. that then aswell the graunte of the forsaid xiij M. men as of all the sommes severally graunted for the wages of the same," should be utterly void and of none effect, (Rot. Parl. vi. 111, 118.) On the re-assembling of parliament in January 1474-5 a further act was passed to hasten the payment of the disme first voted (Ibid. p. 120); and again, on the 14th of March, immediately before the dissolution of the parliament, the commons granted another fifteenth and tenth, and three parts of a fifteenth and tenth, to provide for the before-mentioned sum of 51,147l. 4s.d. (Ibid. pp. 149, 153.)

[29] They are printed in Rymer's Fœdera, &c. vol. xi. pp. 804 et seq.

[30] An account of the payment of these wages for the first quarter, is preserved on the pell records of the Exchequer, and an abstract printed in Rymer's Fœdera, vol. xi. p. 844. It includes the names of the dukes of Clarence, Norfolk, and Suffolk, the earls of Ormonde and Northumberland, the lords Grey, Scrope, Ferrers, Stanley, Fitzwarren, Hastynges, Lisle, and Cobham, and as bannerets sir Ralph Hastings, sir Thomas Mountgomery, and sir John Astley; besides the earl of Douglas and the lord Boyd, noblemen of Scotland; with many knights, esquires, and officers of the king's household.

The item to the duke of Clarence will afford a specimen of these payments: "Georgio duci Clarentiæ pro Cxx hominibus ad arma, seipso computato ut Duce ad xiijs. iiij d. per diem, et pro viginti eorum Militum quilibet ad ij s. per diem, et xcix aliis Hominibus ad Arma quilibet ad xij d. per diem et vj d. ultra de regardo, et pro mille Sagittariis [2275li.

Summa totalis,] MMMCxciij l. vj s. x d.

The payments to the Duke of Gloucester (omitted by Rymer, but extracted in Devon's Issues of the Exchequer, 1837, p. 498,) were nearly to the same amount, viz. For 116 Men at Arms, to himself as a Duke at 13 s. 4 d. per day, 60 l. 13 s. 4 d.; for six Knights, to each of them 2 s. per day, 54 l. 12 s.; to each of the remainder of the said 116 Men at Arms 12 d. per day, and 6 d. per day as a reward,—743 l. 18 s. 6 d.; and to 950 Archers, to each of them 6 d. per day, 2161 l. 6 s.—Total 3020 l. 8 s. 10 d.

Rymer has also (vol. xi. pp. 817-819) given at length three specimens of the indentures made with several persons. The first (dated 20 August 1474) is an indenture retaining sir Richard Tunstall to serve the king for one whole year in his duchy of Normandy and realm of France, with ten speres, himself accompted, and one hundred archers well and sufficiently abiled, armed and arraied, taking wages for hymself of ij s. by the day, for everiche of the said speres xij d. by the day, and rewardes of vj d. by the day for everich of the said other speres, and for everich of the said archers vj d. by the day. The next is an indenture made (on the 13th November) with Thomas Grey esquire, "for one whole year, as a custrell to attend about the king our soveraine lord's own persone, and with six archers well and sufficiently abled, armed, and arraied," his pay being xij d. by the day, an additional vj d. by the day by "meane of reward," and vj d. a day for each of his archers. The third is the indenture made with Richard Garnet esquire, serjeant of the king's tents, who was retained for the like term to do service of war "as a man of armes at his spere, with xxiiij yomen well and sufficiently habiled, armed and arraied," taking wages himself iiij s. a day, for two of the yeomen each xij d. a day, and for the remainder each vj d. a day.

[31] Ibid. pp. 837, 838.

[32] Ibid. pp. 839, 840, 843.

[33] Rymer, xi. 848.

[34] Fœdera, vol. xii. p. 1. Lord Dynham had the principal command at sea by previous appointments in the 12 and 15 Edw. IV. See Dugdale's Baronage, i. 515.

[35] Fabyan says that "upon the iiij day of July (an error for June) he rode with a goodly company thorugh the cytie towarde the see syde."

[36] Printed in the Excerpta Historica, 1831, p. 366.

[37] They are printed in Rymer, vol. xii. pp. 13, 14. This was merely a constitutional form, for the prince was then only four years of age.

[38] Hall states that "he hymself with his nobilitie warlikely accompaigned passed over betwene Dover and Caleys the iiij daye of July," his army, horses, and ammunitions of war having in their transport occupied twenty days.

[39] Monstrelet in his Chronicle attempts to present a list of the principal English lords and knights (the latter more than fifty in number), but every name is so disfigured that they are almost past recognition: as the names he gives to the nobility will show. He calls them, the dukes of Sufflocq and Noirflocq, the earls of Crodale (Arundel?), Nortonbellan, Scersebry, (Shrewsbury, and not as Buchon his editor suggests Salisbury, which title did not then exist,) Willephis (Wiltshire?), and Rivière; the lords Stanlay, Grisrufis, Gray, Erdelay, Ondelay, Verton, Montu, Beguey, Strangle, Havart, and Caubehem. The last name (Cobham) and that of lord Fitzwaren are among the indentures printed by Rymer in his vol. xi. pp. 844-848, already noticed in the note in p. xx.

[40] These particulars are derived from the diary kept by the maistres d'hostel of the Burgundian court, which gives the following minute and curious account of the duke's movements, including the positions, not elsewhere to be found, of the English army during the months of July and August.

"Le 6. Juillet la duchesse de Bourgoyne, qui avoit été presque toujours a Gand, arriva a Calais vers le roy d'Angleterre son frere, qui la deffraya.

"Le 14. ce duc arriva à Calais vers le roy d'Angleterre, qui le deffraya, la duchesse etant pour lors à Sainct Omer, avec les ducs de Clarence et de Glocestre ses freres. Le 18. il alla au chasteau de Guines avec ce roy, qui le fit deffraiyer. Il en partit le 19, et alla à Sainct Omer, où il trouva la duchesse. Il en partit le 22., et alla à Fauquemberghe, près l'ost du roy d'Angleterre. Il y sejourna le 23., et en partit le 24. après déjeuner, et alla disner, soupper, et coucher en la cité d'Arras; et ce jour il mangea du poisson, à cause de la veille de Sainct Jacques. Le 27. il partit d'Arras après disner, et alla coucher à Dourlens. Il en partit le 29. après disner, et alla voir l'ost du roy d'Angleterre, et coucher en le cense de Hamencourt: la duchesse partit ce jour de Sainct Omer, pour retourner à Gand, où mademoiselle de Bourgoyne étoit restée.

"Le mardy premier Août, ce duc disna en la cense de Hamencourt, coucha au village d'Aichen, près l'ost du roy d'Angleterre. Il en partit le 2. après disner, et coucha à Ancre. Il en partit le 3. après disner, et coucha a Curleu sur Somme, près ledit ost. Il y disna le 6. passa par l'ost du roy d'Angleterre, et coucha à Peronne. Il y resta jusques au 12. qu'il en partit après disner, passa par l'ost du roy d'Angleterre, et alla coucher à Cambray. Il y disna le 13. et coucha à Valenciennes, d'où il partit le 18. après disner, souppa à Cambray, et alla coucher à Peronne. Il y disna le 20. alla encore voir le roy d'Angleterre au mesme camp, et alla coucher à Cambray. Le 21. il disna à Valenciennes, coucha à Mons. Le 22. il disna à Nivelle, et coucha à Namur, où les ambassadeurs de Naples, Arragon, Venise, et autres se rendirent. Le 29. Août, entreveue du roy avec le roy d'Angleterre, au lieu de Pequigny; ces princes convinrent d'une treve entre eux, et que le Dauphin épouseroit la fille de ce roy d'Angleterre." (Mémoires de P. de Cominines, edited by Lenglet du Fresnoy, 1747, vol. ii. p. 216.)

[41] Another version of this omen of the dove will be found in the extracts from Commines hereafter.

[42] The fact of earl Rivers having repaired to the duke of Burgundy once, at the end of April, is confirmed by the chronicle formed from the journals of the duke's maistres d'hoste: "Le 29. de ce mois (Avril) le sire de Riviers, ambassadeur du roy d'Angleterre, arriva vers ce duc, et en fut regalé." (Appendix to the edition of Commines, by the Abbé Lenglet du Fresnoy, 4to. 1747, ii. 216.) But in the previous January we read, "The King's ambassadors, sir Thomas Mountgomery and the Master of the Rolls (doctor Morton), be coming homeward from Nuys." (Paston Letters, vol. ii. p. 175.)

[43] i.e. their horses protected by armour.

[44] Hall, following this part of Commines's narrative, on mentioning this English herald, adds, "whome Argenton (meaning Commines,) untrewly calleth Garter borne in Normandy, for the rome of Gartier was never geven to no estraunger." The office of Garter was at this time occupied by John Smert, who was appointed in 28 Hen. VI. and died in 18 Edw. IV. He was the son-in-law of Bruges his predecessor in the office: and there are large materials for his biography in Anstis's Collections on the heralds, at the College of Arms, but containing no evidence either to prove Commines's assertion, or Hall's denial, of his being a native of Normandy.

[45] The constable of France, Jacques de Luxembourg, comte de St. Pol. After temporising between Burgundy and France at this crisis, he paid the penalty for his vacillation, the duke surrendering him to Louis, by whom he was decapitated before the end of the year (Dec. 19, 1475).

[46] Jacqueline duchess of Bedford, the mother of the queen of England, was one of the constable's sisters. The constable was also connected by marriage with king Louis, who called him "brother" from their having married two sisters. The relationship of all the principal actors in the transactions described in the text is shown in the following table:—

Pierre Comte de St. Pol.   Louis Duke of Savoy.     Charles VII. King of France.   Richard Duke of York.
         ===                      ===                           ===                        ===
          |                        |                             |                          |
   +------+-------------+          +--+-----------+           +--+----+                     +--+-------+
   |                    |             |           |           |       |                        |       |
Jacqueline===Richard   Louis Comte===Mary of    Charlotte===Louis  Katharine===Charles Duke===Margaret |
Duchess of | Earl      de St. Pol,   Savoy.     of Savoy.   XI.    of          of Burgundy.   of York. |
Bedford.   | Rivers.  the Constable.                               France.                             |
           |                                                                                           |
           +-+-------------------------------------+                    +------------------------------+
             |                                     |                    |
         Anthony Lord Scales, and Earl Rivers.  Elizabeth Wydville.===King Edward the Fourth.

[47] Afterwards the first duke of Norfolk and earl of Derby of their respective families.

[48] The narrative is continued on the authority of Commines.

[49] See the extracts from the register of the Burgundian maistres d'hostel already given in p. xxiii. The English camp is described as near Fauquemberghe on the 22d of July, and near Aichen on the 1st of August. Its position near Peronne is believed to have been at St. Christ, on the river Somme, and it appears to have remained there for a considerable time.

[50] The duke was at Peronne from the 6th to 12th of August. See the note on his movements before, p. xxiv.

[51] The last was afterwards the husband of the king's daughter the lady Anne of York, and ancestor of the earls and dukes of Rutland.

[52] The prudent and conciliatory conduct of Louis XI. towards the English at this crisis seems to have had a precedent in that of his ancestor Charles V. "Le sage roy de France Charles quint du nom, quant on lui disait que grant honte estoit de recouvrer des forteresses par pecune, que les Anglois à tort tenoient, comme il eust assez puissance pour les ravoir par force, Il me semble (disoit-il,) que ce que on peut avoir par deniers ne doit point estre acheté par sang d'homme." (From the end of the twelfth chapter of the second book of the Faits d'armes de Guerre et de Chevalerie par Christine de Pisan.)

[53] St. Christ.

[54] It is printed in Rymer's Collection, vol. xii. p. 14.

[55] Lord Hastings was previously a pensioner of the duke of Burgundy. Lenglet du Fresnoy has published a letter of the duke granting to William lord Hastings a yearly pension of 1000 crowns of Flanders, dated at the castle of Peronne, 4 May 1471; a receipt of lord Hastings for that sum on the 12th July 1474; and another receipt for 1200 livres of Flanders, dated 12th April 1475. (Mémoires de P. de Commines, 1745, iii. 616, 619.) Commines, in his Sixth Book, chapter ii. relates how he had himself been the agent who had secured lord Hastings to the Burgundian interest, and how he subsequently negociated with him on the part of king Louis. Hastings accepted the French pension, being double the amount of the Burgundian, but on this occasion, according to Commines, would give no written acknowledgment. In an interview with the French emissary, Pierre Cleret, of which Commines in his Book VI. chapter ii. gives the particulars at some length, he said the money might be put in his sleeve. Cleret left it, without acquittance; and his conduct was approved by his master.

[56] In the article of plate "his bountie apperyd by a gyfte that he gave unto lorde Hastynges then lord chamberlayne, as xxiiij. dosen of bollys, wherof halfe were gylt and halfe white, which weyed xvij. nobles every cuppe or more." Fabyan's Chronicle.

[57] This passionate interview must have taken place on the 19th or 20th of August: see the note on the Duke's movements in p. xxiv.

[58] We are continuing to follow the account of Commines. But the truce, which was not yet concluded, was made for seven years only; and the dukes of Burgundy and Britany were not mentioned in the articles. The duke of Burgundy, shortly after, himself made a truce with France for nine years. It was dated on the 13th of September, only fifteen days after that of the English.

[59] Molinet says, "de quatrevingts à cent chariots de vin."

[60] The real Childermas day was on the 28th of December; but sir John Fenn, the editor of the Paston Letters, has suggested that the 28th of every month was regarded as a Childermas day; for the 28th of June, 1461, being Childermas, and consequently a day of unlucky omen, was avoided for the coronation of Edward the Fourth. From other authorities it appears that the day of the week on which Childermas occurred was regarded as unfortunate throughout the year.

[61] Molinet mentions three other names, those of the admiral, the seigneur de Craon, and the mayor of Amiens.

[62] According to our London historian, Fabyan, Louis's attire was by no means becoming:

"Of the nyse and wanton disguysed apparayll (he says) that the kynge Lowys ware upon hym at the tyme of this metynge I myght make a longe rehersayl: but for it shulde sownde more to dishonour of suche a noble man, that was apparaylled more lyke a mynstrell than a prynce royall, therfor I passe it over."

[63] Commines saw king Edward at the Burgundian court in 1470. On that occasion he gives him this brief character: "King Edward was not a man of any great management or foresight, but of an invincible courage, and the most beautiful prince my eyes ever beheld."

[64] The documents which bear date on the day of the royal interview are these, as printed in the edition of Commines by the Abbé Lenglet du Fresnoy, 1747, 4to. vol. iii:—

1. The treaty of truce for seven years between Edward king of France and England and lord of Ireland and his allies on the one part, and the most illustrious prince Louis of France (not styled king) and his allies, on the other. (In Latin.) Dated in a field near Amiens on the 29th August 1475. The conservators of the truce on the part of the king of England were the dukes of Clarence and Gloucester, the chancellor of England, the keeper of the privy seal, the warden of the cinque ports, and the captain or deputy of Calais for the time being; on the part of the prince of France his brother Charles comte of Beaujeu and John bastard of Bourbon admiral of France.

2. Obligation of Louis king of the French to pay to Edward king of England yearly, in London, during the life of either party, the sum of 50,000 crowns. (In Latin.) Dated at Amiens on the 29th of August.

3. A treaty of alliance between king Edward and Louis of France (in Latin) stipulating, 1. that if either of them were driven from his kingdom, he should be received in the states of the other, and assisted to recover it. 2. to name commissioners of coinage, which should circulate in their dominions respectively. 3. that prince Charles, son of Louis, should marry Elizabeth daughter of the king of England, or, in case of her decease, her sister Mary. Dated in the field near Amiens, on the 29th of August.

4. Another part of the treaty, bearing the same date, appointing for the arbiters of all differences, on the part of the king of England his uncle the cardinal Thomas archbishop of Canterbury and his brother George duke of Clarence, and on the part of Louis of France, Charles archbishop of Lyons and John comte de Dunois.

In April 1478 the three years were prolonged by another like term to the 29th August 1481; the letters patent relative to which are printed ibid. p. 536.

On the 13th Feb. 1478-9 the truce was renewed for the lives of both princes, and for one hundred years after the decease of either, king Louis obliging himself and his successors to continue the payment of the 50,000 crowns during that term: the documents relating to this negotiation are printed ibid. pp. 560—570.

[65] Molinet, in his account of the conference, states that it lasted for an hour and a half, and that a principal topic of discussion was the conduct of the constable, Louis showing a letter, in which the constable had engaged to harass the English army as soon as it was landed.

[66] This Gascon gentleman is a person of some interest, from his name being mentioned by Caxton. He was resident at the English court, as a servant of Anthony lord Scales (the queen's brother) as early as the year 1466, when in a letter, dated at London, on the 16th of June, he challenged sir Jehan de Chassa, a knight in the retinue of the duke of Burgundy, to do battle with him in honour of a noble lady of high estimation, immediately after the performance of the intended combat in London between the lord Scales and the bastard of Burgundy. His letter of challenge, in which he terms the king of England his sovereign lord, is printed in the Excerpta Historica, 1831, p. 216; and that of sir Jehan de Chassa accepting it at p. 219, addressed, A treshonnouré escueire Louys de Brutallis. His own signature is Loys de Brutalljs. The encounter is thus noticed in the Annals of William of Wyrcestre: "Et iijo die congressi sunt pedestres in campo, in præsencia regis, Lodowicus Bretailles cum           Burgundiæ; deditque Rex honorem ambobus, attamen Bretailles habuit se melius in campo:" and thus by Olivier de la Marche: "On the morrow Messire Jehan de Cassa and a Gascon squire named Louis de Brettailles, servant of Mons. d'Escalles, did arms on foot: and they accomplished these arms without hurting one another much. And on the morrow they did arms on horseback; wherein Messire Jean de Chassa had great honour, and was held for a good runner at the lance." Lowys de Bretaylles, as his name is printed by Caxton, was still attendant upon the same nobleman, then earl Rivers, in 1473, when he went to the pilgrimage of St. James in Galicia; and upon that occasion, soon after sailing from Southampton, he lent to the earl the Book of Les Dictes Moraux des Philosophes, written in French by Johan de Tronville, which the earl translated, and caused it to be printed by Caxton, as The Dicts and Sayings of the Philosophers, in 1477.

[67] Fabyan's Chronicle.

[68] The former importance and power of the constable are thus described by Commines: "Some persons may perhaps hereafter ask, Whether the king alone was not able to have ruined him? I answer, No; for his territories lay just between those of the king and the duke of Burgundy: he had St. Quintin always, and another strong town in Vermandois: he had Ham and Bohain, and other considerable places not far from St. Quintin, which he might always garrison with what troops (and of what country) he pleased. He had four hundred of the king's men at arms, well paid; was commissary himself, and made his own musters,—by which means he feathered his nest very well, for he never had his complement. He had likewise a salary of forty-five thousand francs, and exacted a crown upon every pipe of wine that passed into Hainault or Flanders through any of his dominions; and, besides all this, he had great lordships and possessions of his own, a great interest in France, and a greater in Burgundy, on account of his kinsmen."

[69] None had actually been made with Burgundy by the treaty of the 29th of August. Commines certainly wrote under a misapprehension in that respect, as well as upon the number of years of the truce with England.

[70] Besides the lady Margaret there were two sons: Maximilian, afterwards the emperor Maximilian, and Philip. There was a contract of marriage in 1479 between the latter and the lady Anne of England, one of the daughters of Edward the Fourth. (Rymer, xii. 110.)

[71] Margaret herself was eventually rejected by Charles VIII. who was nearly nine years her senior. When he had the opportunity of marrying the heiress of Bretagne, and thereby annexing that duchy to France, Margaret was sent back to her father in 1493, and afterwards married in 1497 to John infante of Castile, and in 1501 to Philibert duke of Savoy. She subsequently nearly yielded to the suit of Charles Brandon lord Lisle, (afterwards the husband of Mary queen dowager of France,) who was made duke of Suffolk by his royal master in order to be more worthy of her acceptance; but at last she died childless in 1530, after a widowhood of six and twenty years, and a long and prosperous reign as regent of the Netherlands.

[72] Paston Letters, vol. i. p. 172.

[73] "Whiche book was translated and thystoryes openly declared by the ordinaunce and desyre of the noble auncyent knyght Syr Johan Fastolf, of the countee of Norfolk banerette, lyvyng' the age of four score yere, excercisyng' the warrys in the Royame of Fraunce and other countrees for the diffence and universal welfare of bothe royames of Englond' and' Fraunce, by fourty yeres enduryng', the fayte of armes haunting, and in admynystryng Justice and polytique governaunce under thre kynges, that is to wete, Henry the fourth, Henry the fyfthe, Henry the syxthe, And was governour of the duchye of Angeou and the countee of Mayne, Capytayn of many townys, castellys, and fortressys in the said Royame of Fraunce, havyng' the charge and saufgarde of them dyverse yeres, ocupyeng' and rewlynge thre honderd' speres and' the bowes acustomed thenne, And yeldyng' good' acompt of the foresaid townes, castellys, and fortresses to the seyd' kynges and to theyr lyeutenauntes, Prynces of noble recomendacion, as Johan regent of Fraunce Duc of Bedforde, Thomas duc of Excestre, Thomas duc of Clarence, and other lyeutenauntes." This may be considered as a grateful tribute from William of Worcestre, when himself advanced in years (he died in or about 1484), to the memory of his ancient master, sir John Fastolfe, who had died in 1460. The biography of William of Worcestre was written by the Rev. James Dallaway in the Retrospective Review, vol. xvi. p. 451; and reprinted in 4to. 1823, in his volume entitled "William Wyrcestre redivivus: Notices of Ancient Church Architecture, particularly in Bristol," &c.; but the latest and most agreeable sketch of Worcestre's life is that given by Mr. G. Poulett Scrope in his History of Castle Combe, 1852, 4to.

[74] He has recorded that in 1473 he presented a copy of his translation to bishop Waynflete,—"but received no reward!" His version was not made from the original, but from the French of Laurentius de Primo Facto, or du Premier-Faict: an industrious French translator, who flourished from 1380 to 1420.

[75] Bale, in his list of the works of Worcestre, whom he notices under his alias of Botoner, mentions Acta Domini Joannis Fastolf, lib. I, (commencing) "Anno Christi 1421, et anno regni—"

Oldys (in the Biographia Britannica, 1750, p. 1907) attributes to Worcestre "a particular treatise, gratefully preserving the life and deeds of his master, under the title of Acta Domini Johannis Fastolff, which we hear is still in being, and has been promised the publick;" but in the second edition of Oldys's life of Fastolfe (Biographia Britannica, 1793, v. 706), we find merely this note substituted: "This is mentioned in the Paston Letters, iv. p. 78." The letter there printed is one addressed by John Davy to his master John Paston esquire after sir John Fastolfe's death. It relates to inquiries made of one "Bussard" for evidences relative to Fastolfe's estate; and it thus concludes: "he seyth the last tyme that he wrot on to William Wusseter it was beffor myssomyr, and thanne he wrote a Cronekyl of Jerewsalem and the Jornes that my mayster dede whyl he was in Fraunce, that God on his sowle have mercy, and he seyth that this drew more than xx whazerys (quires) off paper, and this wrytyng delyvered onto Wursseter, and non other, ne knowyth not off non other be is feyth." It appears, I think, very clearly that this passage was misunderstood by Oldys, or his informant, and that the historian of the "journeys" and valiant acts of sir John Fastolfe was not Worcestre, but the person called Bussard. It is not impossible that the person whom John Davy meant by that name was Peter Basset, who is noticed in the next page.

Mr. Benjamin Williams, in the Preface to "Henrici Quinti Gesta," (printed for the English Historical Society, 1850,) says of Worcestre that "he wrote the Acts of Sir John Fastolfe, contained in the volume from which this chronicle is extracted," i.e. the Arundel MS. XLVIII. in the College of Arms; but that statement appears to have been carelessly made, without ascertaining that the volume contained any such "Acts." "Also (Mr. Williams adds) the Acts of John Duke of Bedford (MS. Lambeth);" but those "Acts" again are not an historical or biographical memoir, but a collection of state papers and documents relating to the English occupation of France, which will be found described in Archdeacon Todd's Catalogue of the Lambeth Manuscripts as No. 506. Its contents are nearly identical with those of a volume in the library of the Society of Antiquaries, MSS. No. 41, as will be found on comparison with Sir Henry Ellis's Catalogue of that collection, p. 17. The latter is the volume which Oldys, in his life of sir John Fastolfe, in the Biographia Britannica 1750, has described at p. 1907 as a "quarto book some time in the custody of the late Brian Fairfax esquire, one of the Commissioners of the Customs," and of which Oldys attributes the collection to the son of William of Worcestre, because a dedicatory letter from that person to king Edward the Fourth is prefixed to the volume.

Another very valuable assemblage of papers of the like character, and which may also be regarded as part of the papers of sir John Fastolfe, is preserved in the College of Arms, MS. Arundel XLVIII., and is fully described by Mr. W. H. Black in his Catalogue of that collection, 8vo. 1829. This is the volume from which Hearne derived the Annals of William of Worcestre, and Mr. Benjamin Williams one of his chronicles of the reign of Henry the Fifth.

It is probable that the Lambeth MS. was formerly in the Royal Library, for abstracts of some of its more important documents, in the autograph of King Edward the Sixth, are preserved in the MS. Cotton. Nero C. x. These have been printed in the Literary Remains of King Edward the Sixth, pp. 555-560.

[76] From the authority of Tanner and Oldys, we gather that there was formerly a volume in the library of the College of Arms, bearing the following title: "Liber de Actis Armorum et Conquestus Regni Franciæ, ducatus Normanniæ, ducatus Alenconiæ, ducatus Andegaviæ et Cenomanniæ, &c. Compilatus fuit ad nobilem virum Johannem Fastolff, baronem de Cyllye guillem vel Cylly quotem, &c. 1459, per Pet. Basset armig." (Tanner, Bibliotheca Britannica, 1748, p. 79; Oldys, Biographia Britannica, 1750, iii. 1903, again, p. 1906; and 2nd edit. 1793, v. 701.) Both Tanner and Oldys describe this book as being in the Heralds' Office at London, but it is not now to be found there; and is certainly not a part of the Arundel MS. XLVIII. the contents of which curious and valuable volume are minutely described in the Catalogue of the collection by Mr. W. H. Black, F.S.A.

[77] Bale (Scriptores Brytanniæ, vii. 80, Folio, 1557, p. 568,) describes Peter Basset as an esquire of noble family, and an attendant upon Henry the Fifth in his bedchamber throughout that monarch's career. Bale states that this faithful esquire wrote the memoirs of his royal master, very fully, from his cradle to his grave, in the English language; and we find that the work was known to the chronicler Hall, who quotes Basset in regard to the disease of which the king died. It is remarkable, however, that this work, like that formerly in the College of Arms, mentioned in the preceding note (if it were not the same), has now disappeared; and the name of Basset has been unknown to Mr. Benjamin Williams and Mr. Charles Augustus Cole, the editors of recent collections on the reign of Henry the Fifth for the English Historical Society and the series of the present Master of the Rolls, (1850 and 1858,) as also to Sir N. Harris Nicolas, the historian of the Battle of Agincourt, and the Rev. J. Endell Tyler, the biographer of King Henry of Monmouth (2 vols. 8vo. 1838).

[78] Its real author is supposed to have been Ægidius Romanus, or De Columna, who was bishop of Berri, and died in 1316. See Les Manuscrits Francois de la Bibliothèque du Roi, par M. Paulin Paris, 1836, i. 224. It was printed at Rome in 1482, and at Venice in 1598: see Cave, Historia Literaria, vol. ii. p. 340. Thomas Occleve, the contemporary of Chaucer, wrote a poem De Regimine Principum, founded, to a certain extent, upon the work of Ægidius, but applied to the events of his own time, and specially directed to the instruction of the prince of Wales, afterwards King Henry V. The Roxburghe Club has recently committed the editorship of this work to Mr. Thomas Wright, F.S.A.

[79] Preface to The Buke of the Order of Knyghthede (Abbotsford Club, 1847,) p. xxiii.

[80] Ames's Typographical Antiquities, by Dibdin, iii. 198. Moule (Bibliotheca Heraldica, 1822, p. 12,) conjectures that this may have been the same with "A Treatise of Nobility," by John Clerke, mentioned by Wood, in his Athenæ Oxonienses, as being also a translation from the French; this was printed in 12mo, 1543. (Ath. Oxon. edit. Bliss, i. 205.) In that case the name of Larke is an error of Ames.

[81] Wyer also printed "The Boke of Knowledge," a work on prognostics in physic, and on astronomy (Dibdin's Ames, iii. 199, 200), and "The Book of Wysdome, spekyng of vyces and vertues, 1532." (ibid. p. 175.)

[82] Typographical Antiquities, first edition, iii. 1527.

[83] Mr. B. B. Woodward, F.S.A. the author of a History of Hampshire now in progress, kindly undertook for me to search the records of the city of Winchester in order to discover, if possible, any information in elucidation of this document; but he found them in so great confusion, that at present it is impossible to pursue such an inquiry with any hope of success.

[84] Here is written above the line, in a later hand, yn yor most noble persone and

[85] In MS. whiche whan

[86] MS. of

[87] These words are inserted by a second hand.

[88] Inserted above the line by a second hand.

[89] sc. weight

[90] MS. infinitee

[91] MS. to

[92] MS. if it

[93] MS. defoule

[94] MS. be that

[95] MS. they

[96] MS. it is

[97] The words thowsands and are inserted above the line.

[98] Added by second hand.

[99] Altered by second hand to youre

[100] Inserted above the line by a second hand.

[101] qu.? yet

[102] Inserted by second hand.

[103] Added by second hand.

[104] This passage is inserted by the second hand.

[105] Added by second hand.

[106] The Hague.

[107] So the MS.

[108] Inserted by second hand.

[109] Inserted by second hand.

[110] MS. cons.

[111] Inserted by the second hand.

[112] The word king has been erased, and altered to prince.

[113] The insertion occupying the ensuing page is written by the second hand in the margin.

[114] Inserted by the second hand.

[115] overthrow in MS.

[116] Inserted by second hand.

[117] Inserted by second hand.

[118] Inserted by second hand.

[119] Added in the margin by second hand.

[120] Added by second hand in the margin.

[121] Inserted by second hand.

[122] Inserted by second hand.

[123] Inserted by second hand.

[124] So in MS.

[125] Inserted by third hand.

[126] Inserted by second hand.

[127] Inserted by the second hand.

[128] Inserted by second hand.

[129] ? all.

[130] Inserted by second hand.

[131] Inserted by second hand.

[132] The word innocent is written by some Lancastrian over an erasure.

[133] Inserted by second hand.

[134] Added by second hand.

[135] Inserted by second hand.

[136] So in the MS.

[137] Inserted by second hand.

[138] So in MS.

[139] Inserted by second hand.

[140] Inserted by second hand.

[141] Inserted by second hand.

[142] Inserted by second hand.

[143] So in the MS.

[144] MS. youre.

[145] MS. of.

[146] MS. they owre.

[147] of in MS.

[148] Added by second hand.

[149] Inserted by second hand.

[150] Inserted by second hand.

[151] In the margin is here placed the following note respecting Dame Christina of Passy:— "Notandum est quod Cristina [fuit] domina præclara natu et moribus, et manebat in domo religiosarum dominarum apud Passye prope Parys; et ita virtuosa fuit quod ipsa exhibuit plures clericos studentes in universitate Parisiensi, et compilare fecit plures libros virtuosos, utpote Liber Arboris Bellorum, et doctores racione eorum exhibicionis attribuerunt nomen autoris Christinæ, sed aliquando nomen autoris clerici studentis imponitur in diversis libris; et vixit circa annum Christi 1430, sed floruit ab anno Christi 1400."

[152] Inserted by second hand in the margin.

[153] Inserted by second hand.

[154] MS. goodis.

[155] Inserted by second hand.

[156] MS. startees.

[157] So in MS.

[158] Sir John Fastolfe.

[159] This word has been in the MS. by error altered to stode, which belongs to the next line.

[160] So. in MS.

[161] MS. wounding.

[162] This word is written on an erasure.

[163] So in the MS.

[164] Inserted by second hand.

[165] Inserted by second hand.

[166] Written over an erasure.

[167] MS. nede or of.

[168] Written on an erasure.

[169] Inserted by second hand.

[170] So in the MS.

[171] Inserted by second hand.

[172] Inserted by second hand.

[173] MS. youre.

[174] Inserted by second hand.

[175] MS. Gentiles.

[176] Written on an erasure.

[177] Inserted by second hand.

[178] Written on an erasure.

[179] Inserted by second hand.

[180] MS. excersing.

[181] Inserted by second hand.

[182] Inserted by second hand.

[183] So in MS. sc. stir?

[184] So in MS.

[185] MS. where.

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