Capitulum vicesimum quintum.
KYNGE Henricus dedde, and beryede at Founte Ebrard, Ri|cardus his sonne succedid, reignynge by x. yere. The maners and actes off whom Steven of Cawnterbery describethe excel|lentely. This kynge was crownede at London, of Baldewyne archebischop of Cawnterbery, in the thrydde nones of September, callede an unhappy day, after the olde ryte of Gentiles. For that day was unhappy day to the Iues beynge in Ynglonde, where a grete multitude of theym were commyn to London to see the solemnite of the coronacion, dredynge specially leste thei scholde have lesse favor in the tyme of thys kynge then thei hade in the tyme of his fader. The kynge prohibite the Iewes to entre into the churche when he was crownede, and also when he was at meyte that thei scholde not come to his palyce. Neverthe|lesse Page 85, vol.8 the kynge beynge at meyte, somme of the Iewes entrede into his palice amonge other men, and oon of theym hurte by a ministre of the kynge, a grete multitude of peple off the cite supposynge the kynge to have commaunded that, did sle a grete multitude of the Iewes with bylles and wepyn suche as they myȝhte gette, and brente the howses to whom the Iewes were fledde, and wolde not leve in eny wyse: but pease was ȝiffen to the Iewes at the laste, a grete multitude of theyme sleyne afore. After that the kynge ȝafe to Iohn his broþer dignites beynge vacant, as the provinces of Cornewaile, Devonschire, of Notyngham and of Lancastre, withowte oþer ȝiftes of his fader in Normandy and in Yrlonde. After that this kynge Ricar|dus Page 87, vol.8 resignede to the kynge of Scottes the castells of Berwik and of Rokysbery for X. M.li. that he myȝhte have goodes suffi|ciaunte with hym into the holy Londe, and receyvyde also of the olde ryche bischoppe of Dirham as goodes with owte [folio 365a] nowmbre for the province of Dirham. And the kynge was wonte to say in disporte that he hade made a novice an erle by goode crafte, and so by that meanes the kynge gate grete Page 89, vol.8 goodes. This kynge Richarde, rebukede of his frendes for suche thynges, seyde, "I wolde selle London and if y cowthe fynde a byer sufficiaunte." And moche peple boughte diverse possessions of the kynge, thenkynge that he scholde not have commen ageyn. This kynge hade also licence of the pope to discharge men that were merkede with the crosse, whereby he receyvede mony Mlli. After that the kynge toke the governayle of þe realme negligentely, as hit was supposede, unto the bischop of Hely his chawnceler, and saylede into Normandy afore the feste of Cristemasse. In whiche tyme a signe of the crosse apperede at Dunstaple in the firmamente, and soone after the forme or similitude of the crosse was seen as to departe by a certeyn season and space from the baner. Page 91, vol.8 This kynge departede into the holy Londe, William bischop of Hely, chawnceller to the kynge, protector of the realme, and legate of the pope made for money, oppressede moche the clergy, Page 93, vol.8 portendynge the power of the kynge, depressynge the peple, schewynge his auctorite, rydynge with a ml. horses, and vexenge monasterys moche thro hospitalite of hym and of his peple. This made the noble men of the realme accordynge to hym, destroy|enge the seetes of Cawnterbery and of Yorke at his pleasure; for Baldewinus the archebischop of Cawnterbery wente into the holy Londe, and diede at the cite of Tirus, for the excesse usede by the bischop of Hely. Also he lette Gaufride, broþer to the kynge, electe to the seete of Yorke by x. yere, and putte hym in prison; after that kepynge a cownsayle at Westmynster as proctor of a realme and legate of the pope. In whiche cown|saile a felowe to hym, Hewe Nonant bischop of Chestre, made compleynte that monkes of Coventre wolde have sleyne hym afore the hie awter. Þat herde William bischoppe of Hely made a decrete that the monkes of the place scholde be putte aweye, and clerkes prebendaryes to be putte into hit. This occasion hade, this bischop of Chestre, a bolde man and withowte schame, Page 95, vol.8 whiche sawede alleweyes discorde betwene the prior and the,*. [Sic.] takynge with hym a grete multitude of armede men, expellede the monkes, and sende messyngers to the pope with testimony [folio 365b] of diverse bischoppes how the monkes of Coventre levynge the servyce of Criste returnede to the worlde, desirenge licence of the pope that he myȝhte dispose that place to hys pleasure. But the pope suspende the sentence in that mater by v. monethes, if eny of the monkes of þat place wolde comme and allegate ageyne that supplicacion, and so the bischop obteynede his desire. Of this bischoppe of Chestre men may rede, laborynge in soore passions and infirmite at Beccun in Nor|mandy on goode Friday, and fyndynge noo man that wolde ȝiffe to hym penaunce for his synnes, he seide openly, I iugge Page 97, vol.8 my sawle to be in the peynes of purgatory unto the day of iuggement for my synnes. In the yere of oure Lorde God M.C. lxxxviij. William kynge of Scottes sende messyngers to Clement the pope, and obteynede letters of proteccion of the seide pope that the churches of Scotlonde scholde not be subiecte to eny other but to the churche of Rome. Messyngers of the kynge of Fraunce sende to Ysacus emperoure of Constanti|nopole, returnede to theire kynge in this yere, and rehersede that the soldan Yconyke mariede his doȝhter to the sonne of the Saladyne, expressynge also þat Daniel the prophete of Constantinopole hade pophecyede that men of Fraunce scholde restore the londe of promission in that yere when the An|nunciacion of Oure Lady scholde falle on Ester day, and scholde sette theire horses in the paviment of Baldac, and fixe theire tentes over the drye tree, and whete scholde be departede from popy. Also thei seide that the messyngers of the Saladyne hade moore honoure schewede to theym in the palyce of themperoure then alle other men that were in hit. And also they seyde that the Saladyne by consente of themperoure of Constantinopole hade intended to have putte an ydole made after his similitude in the temple, that he myȝhte be worschippede of peple openly; but as God wolde, men of Venyse toke hit, or hit come þere in the see, and brouȝhte hit and the schippe also with theyme to the cite of Tirus. Also thei seide that an olde Greke seide to theyme [folio 366a] that the prophecy scholde be fullefyllede whiche is wryten in the ȝate of golde not openede by cc. yere, whiche prophecy was, "I schalle open by my selfe when that a redde kynge of þe weste schalle comme, and then men of Latyn schalle have dominacion in the cite of Constantinopole." Also thei seide that the emperour promysede to the Saladyn a c. gales and the Saladyne promisede to hym alle the londe of promission if he wolde lette the commynge of men of Frawnce. But the emperoure of Constantinopole made a constitucion thro alle his empire, that and if eny man vexede or trowblede eny man merkede with the crosse, he scholde be put into prisonne. For this was the prophecy and astronomye of the Grekes and of the Turkes, that with ynne the space of iij. yere oon parte of the Turkes scholde be sleyne, an other parte scholde flee behynde Page 99, vol.8 the drye tree, and the thrydde parte scholde be baptizede. In the yere of oure Lorde God M. c. xcj., þer was in the cite of Acon a devowte man and secrete for the drede of paganes, whiche sende oftetymes letters to the hoste of Cristen peple wryten in Hebrewe, in Grewe, and in Latyn, and schewede to theyme the purpose of the paganes. And so by that Cristen man the hoste of Cristen peple avoidede mony perelles, and the Cristen were soory that thei hade noo knowlege of his person neither of his name, confessynge in alle his letters that he was a Cristen man, and writynge in the begynnynge of theyme, "In nomine Patris, et Filii, et Spiritus Sancti." But hit is to be mervaylede that he wolde not schewe hym to Cristen peple neither afore the takynge of the cite neiþer after. In the yere of oure Lorde God M. c. xcij., seynte Hewe bischoppe of Lincolne makynge visitacions by religious places in his diocyse come to the monastery of Godestowe nye to Oxenforde. Whiche entrenge into the churche to make his preyers see a tumbe in the myddes of the qwere afore the hie awter coverede with clothes of sylke, and lampes and cerges brennynge abowte hit. And the byschop inquirede anon what person was beryede þer; peple presente answerede seyenge that Rosamunde, frende to kynge Henricus the secunde and sonne of the empresse, for whom the kynge hade doen mony grete benefites to theire churche. Then the [folio 366b] bischop commaundede that sche scholde be beryede owte of the churche with other peple, seyenge that sche was an hoore, leste the religion of Criste decrease, that ylle disposede women may take exemple by her to avoide the synne of advoutery and of lechery.*. [For this long passage on pp. 97 and 99 there is no Latin given by Higden.]