A chronicle of the Kings of England, from the time of the Romans goverment [sic] unto the raigne of our soveraigne lord, King Charles containing all passages of state or church, with all other observations proper for a chronicle
Baker, Richard, Sir, 1568-1645.
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Viuat ô Viuat Princeps CAROLINUS, et Orbi.
Imperet, in̄umeris decorans sua sêcla Triumphis.
Flourish braue Prince, out shine thy Glorious Name.
Triumphant Laurels ever Crowne thy Fame.
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CAROLUS inter Reges ut Lilium inter Flores








A NO••••

CHRONICLE OF THE KINGS OF ENGLAND From the Time of the ROMANS Goverment unto the Raigne of our Soveraigne LORD KING CHARLES.
Containing all Passages of State & Church, With all other Observations proper for a CHRONICLE.
Faithfully Collected out of Authours Ancient and Moderne; & digested into a new Method.
By Sr R. Baker, Knight.
LONDON, Printed for Daniel Frere, and are to be sold at his Shop, at the Red Bull in Little Brittaine. 1643.

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To the High and Mighty Prince CHARLES, Prince of Wales, and Duke of Cornewall: Eldest Sonne of our Soveraigne Lord, CHARLES, King of Great Britaine, France, and IRELAND.


THE Dedication of Chronicles hath in all times been thought worthy of the greatest Princes: Gulielmus Gemiticen∣sis writ a Chronicle of the Dukes of Normandy, and Dedicated it to Willi∣am the Conquerour. Thomas Walsing∣ham writ a Chronicle of the Kings of England, and De∣dicated it to King Henry the sixth: And of late time, Sir Francis Bacon, Viscount Saint Albans, and Lord Chancellour of England, writ a History of the Reigne of King Henry the seventh, and Dedicated it to Your Royall Grand-Father of blessed memory, King Iames: For indeed, as nothing makes Princes more Illustrious then Learning; So no Learning makes them more Ju∣dicious then History; Other Learning may fill their mindes with knowledge; This onely with Judgement: And seeing it is Judgement that must sit as President o∣ver all their Actions, it is fit that History should sit as President over all their Studies. History gives an An∣tedate to Time; and brings Experience without gray haires: Other Knowledges make You but see Quod antepedes est; History is the true perspective Glasse, that will make You see things afarre off: And though it Page  [unnumbered] make not men to become Prophets, yet it makes their conjectures to be little lesse then Oracles But most Illustrious Prince, there accrues to your Highnesse, by this Chronicle, a greater benefit then all this; For if it were an Excitation of great force to vertue, to have it said, Et Pater Aeneas & Avunculus excitet Hector; of how great Force must it needes be, when You shall reade the Noble Acts of so many your worthy Proge∣nitors; Some Eternized for their valourous Atchieve∣ments in Warre: Some for their prudent government in Peace: Some Renowned for Mercy, some for Justice: And although the Example of your Royall Father be not amongst them, yet it may be sufficient that while you have the Acts of others upon Record, you have his under View, by which he seemes to say unto you, Disce Puer virtutem exme, verumque laborem; Fortunam ex a∣liis. And if in any of your Progenitors, there appeare, as it were Maculae in Orbe Lunae, will it not invite you to a higher Orbe, that Your Actions may shine with the clearer Beames? and then how happy will the eyes be, that shall see you sitting in your Throne? For my selfe, I should account it happinesse enough, that I have lived to see the dayes of your Illustrious Father; if it were not a great unhappines to see them overcast with clouds; & yet when these clouds shal be dispel'd, will it not make him shine with the greater Splendor? And this as old as I am, I doubt not to live my selfe to see, and having once seene it, shal then willingly say my Nunc Dimittis, and lave the joy of your glorious times for another Age: In the meane time prostrating my self humbly at your feet; and wishing to your Highnesse, as Diphobus did to Aeneas;—I Decus, I Nostrum, Melioribus utere Fatis.

Your most humble and most devoted Servant, RICHARD BAKER.

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An Epistle to the READER.

THis Booke, I suppose will no sooner come abroad; but the que∣stion will be asked, why any man would take so superfluous a Labour, to write that which hath been written by so many; by some so copiously, by some so elegantly, that nothing can be ad∣ded: To which Objection, I confesse my selfe unable to make a better Answer then by President: For when many excellent men had written the Story of the Roman Emperours, both accurately and elo∣quently; yet Suetonius Tranquillus comming after them, wanted not his part of Commendation. For though he added nothing in the matter or substance, yet be altered much in the forme and disposition, distinguishing that into Classes and Chapters, which the former had delivered in one continued Narration: as being both lesse tedious to the Reader, like a way marked out by Miles; and more plain∣ly Informing, where Distinction tooke away confusion. Besides, many have Writ∣ten the Reignes of our English Kings, copiously indeed, but so superfluously, that much may justly be pared away; Some againe Elegantly indeed, but so succinctly, that much as justly may be added: And this, if I have endevoured to doe, I can∣not be blamed; If done it, I deserve acceptance. Againe, where many have writ∣ten the Reignes of some of our Kings, excellently as in the way of History, yet I may say they have not done it so well in the way of Chronicle; For whilst they in∣sist wholly upon matters of State, they wholly omit meaner Accidents, which yet are Materials as proper for a Chronicle, as the other. For my selfe, if in some places I be found to set downe whole passages, as they are already set downe by others, and may seeme rather to transcribe then to write; yet this I suppose may be ex∣cused, as being all of one common stocke; and no matter from whence the water comes, so it come cleane to the Readers use. Lastly, for the Worke it selfe; I dare be bold to say, that it hath beene Collected out of Authours both Ancient and Mo∣derne, with so great care and diligence, that if all other Chronicles should be lost, yet this onely would be sufficient to informe Posterity of all passages memorable or worthy to be knowne; which of any other generall Chronicle, cannot perhaps be said.


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  • 1 GIldas Britannicus, surna∣med the Wise, was the first writer of our Eng∣lish Nation; who a∣mongst other his Workes; writ a Treatise De Excidio Britanniae, He was borne in the year 493. and dyed in the yeare 580.
  • 2 Nennius a Monke of Bangor, writ the Story of Britaine, and lived about the yeare 620.
  • 3 Venerable Bede, a Saxon and a Priest, writ the Ecclesiasticall Story of the Eng∣lish Nation, from the comming in of Ju∣lius Caesar, to the yeare 733. about which time he dyed.
  • 4 Ethelwardus, a writer next to Bede the most ancient, writ a generall Chronicle from the Creation to the end of King Ed∣gar.
  • 5 Radulphus de Diceto, who lived about the yeare 685.
  • 6 Segebert King of the East Angles, writ an Institution of Lawes, in his later dayes became a Monke, and was slaine by Penda King of the Mercians, in the yeare 652.
  • 7 Cymbertus Bishop of Lindsey, in the kingdome of Mercia, writ the Annals of that Country, & lived about the yeare 730
  • 8 Daniel Wentanus a Bishop, writ the History of his Province: and the Acts of the South Saxons, and dyed in the yeare 746.
  • 9 Asserius Menevensis, borne in Pem∣brokeshire, Bishop of Salisbury, writ the Story of Britaine, and the Acts of King Alphred, and lived about the yeare 890.
  • 10 Alphredus the great, King of the An∣gles,ourth sonne of King Ethelwolph; writ, besides many other workes, a Col∣lection of Chronicles, and dyed at Win∣chester in the yeare 901.
  • 11 Osbernus a Benedictine Monke, writ the life of the Arch-bishop Dunstan, and other workes: and lived about the yeare 1020.
  • 12 Colmanus Anglicus, writ a Chroni∣cle and a Catalogue of the English Kings, and lived about the yeare 1040. in the time of King Harold the first.
  • 13 Gulielmus Gemeticensis, a Norman and a Monke, writ the lives of the Dukes of Normandy, to William the Conque∣ror, to whom he Dedicated his Worke: and after enlarged it to the death of King Henry the first, in the yeare 1135. at which time he lived.
  • 14 Marianus Scotus a Monke, writ An∣nals Page  [unnumbered] from the beginning of the world to his own time, and dyed in the yeare 1086.
  • 15 Alphredus a Priest of Beverly, writ a History, from the first Originall of the Britaines to his owne time, and lived a∣bout the yeare 1087. in the time of Wil∣liam the Conquerour.
  • 16 Veremundus a Spaniard, and a Priest, but who lived much in Scotland, writ the Antiquities of the Scottish Nation, and lived about the yeare 1090.
  • 17 Lucianus a Monke, and an English wri∣ter, and lived in the first times of the Normans.
  • 18 Ingulphus Abbot of Croyland, writ from the yeare 664. to the yeare 1066. and lived in the time of William the Conque∣rour, whose Secretary he had beene.
  • 19 Turgotus an Englishman, first Deane of Durham, and afterward Bishop of Saint Andrewes in Scotland, writ a History of the Kings of Scotland, also Chronicles of Durham, Annals of his own time, and the life of King Malcolm, and lived in the yeare 1098. in the time of King William Rufus.
  • 20 Glielmus Pictaviensis, writ a Trea∣tise of the Life of William the Conque∣rour.
  • 21 Gualterus Mappaeus, writ a Booke, De Nugis Curialium, and lived about the Conquerours time.
  • 22 William of Malmesbury, a Benedi∣ctine Monke, writ a History of the Eng∣lish Nation, from the first comming of the Saxons into Britaine, to his owne time, which Worke he Dedicated to Ro∣bert Duke of Glocester, base Sonne of King Henry the First, and lived to the first yeares of King Henry the Second.
  • 23 Florentius Bravonius, a Monke of Worcester, compiled a Chronicle from the Creation, to the yeare 1118. in which yeare he dyed; his Worke was continued by another Monke to the yeare 1163.
  • 24 Eadmerus a Monke of Canterbury, writ the lives of William the Conque∣rour, William Rufus, and King Hen∣ry the First, in whose time he lived.
  • 25 Raradocus borne in Wales, writ the Acts of the Britaine Kings, from Cad∣wallader to his owne time, and lived in the time of King Stephen.
  • 26 Gervasius Dorobernensis, a Bene∣dictine Monke, writ a History of the Eng∣lish Nation, & lived about the yeare 1120
  • 27 Johannes Fiberius commonly called De Bever, writ short Annals of the English Nation, and lived about the yeare 1110. in the time of King Henry the first.
  • 28 Henry, Arch-deacon of Huntington, writ a History of the Kings of England, to the Reigne of King Stephen, in whose time he lived.
  • 29 Geoffrey of Monmouth, a Benedictine Monke, and afterward Bishop of Asaph, writ a History of the Britaines, and was the first that makes mention of Brute and of Merlins Prophecies, for which he is much taxed by divers Authours of his owne time; and after; he lived about the yeare 1150. in the time of King Ste∣phen.
  • 30 William of Newborough, borne at the beginning of King Stephens Reigne, writ a History of the English Nation, and bitterly inveighes against Geoffrey of Monmouth, as a Deviser of Fables.
  • 31 Sylvester Gyraldus, borne in Wales, and thereof called Cambrensis; after long travaile abroad was called home, and made Secretary to King Henry the Se∣cond; and after was sent Tutour to his Sonne John into Ireland; he writ the History of that Nation very exquisitely; also an Itinerarium of Wales and Bri∣taine; the Life of Henry the Second; the Acts of King John, and a Chronicle of the English Nation, and lived about the yeare 1190. in the times of King Ri∣chard the First, and King John.
  • 32 John of Hagulstad, a Towne in the North, a Benedictine Monke in Durham, writ the most memorable things, from the ninth yeare of King Henry the Second, to the first yeare of King Richard the first, in whose time he lived, about the yeare 1190.
  • 33 Roger Hoveden, a Priest of Oxford, writ the Annals of the Kings of Eng∣land, and the memorable passages under the Romans, Picts, Saxons, Danes, and Normans; he lived in the time of King Richard the first, and dyed in the time of King John.
  • 34 Johannes Tilberiensis, a secular Priest, writ a History of the English Nation; and lived in the time of King Richard the first.
  • 35 Richardus Canonicus, travelled with King Richard the first into Palestine; and writ of his Iourney and Acts there.
  • Page  [unnumbered]36 Aluredus Rivallensis, or de Rivallis, a Cistersian Monke, in the Diocesse of Yorke, writ the Life of Edward King of England, and David King of Scots, and dyed in the yeare 1166.
  • 37 Simon Dunelmensis, a Benedictine Monke, writ a History of the English Nation, from the death of Venerable Bede, to the yeare 1164. and lived in the time of King Henry the second.
  • 38 John de Oxenford, first Deane of Sa∣lisbury, and after Bishop of Norwich, writ the British History, and continued it to his own time; wherin he agreeth much with Geoffry of Monmouth; and lived about the yeare 1174. in the tim of King Henry the second.
  • 39 Johannes Sarisberiensis, writ an ex∣cellent Book De Nugis Curialium; and lived about the yeare 1182. in the time of King Henry the second.
  • 40 Gulielmus Parvus, a Canon Regular in the Province of Yorke, writ a Histo∣ry of the Norman Kings; and lied about the year1216. in the time of King John.
  • 41 Johannes Campobellus, a Scotch man writte the History of the Scots, from the first Originall of the Nation to his owne time: and lived in the yeare 1260.
  • 42 John Breton an Englishman, Bishop of Hereford, writ a Booke De Juribus An∣glicanis, and lived in the yeare 1270. in the time of King Henry the third.
  • 43 Thomas Wyke an Englishman, a Canon Regular of Osney neere Oxford, writ a short History from the commng in of William the Conquerour to his owne time, and lived in the yeare 1290. in the time of King Edward the first.
  • 44 Thomas Langford an Englishman, a Dominican Fryer of Chemsford in Es∣sex, writ an Universall Chronicle, from the beginning of the world to his owne time, and lived in the yeare 1320. in the time of King Edward the second.
  • 45 Radulphus de Rizeto an Englishman, writ a Chronicle of the English Nation, and lived about the yeare 1210. in the time of King John.
  • 46 Robertus Montensis, a benedictine Monke, writ a Chronicle from the yeare 1112. to the yeare 1210. at which time he lived.
  • 47 Johannes Burgensis an Englishman, a benedictine Monke, writ Annals of the English Nation.
  • 48 Thomas Spotey an Englishman, a benedictine Fryer of Canterbury, writ the Chronicles of Canterbury, and li∣ved about the time of King Edward the second.
  • 49 Matthaeus Westmonasteriensis, called Florilegus, for collecting Flores Histo∣riarum, chiefly of Briaine, containing from the beginning of the world to the yeare 1307. about which time he lived.
  • 50 Ranulphus Higden, a benedictine Monke of Chester, writ a Booke which he called Polychronicon, containing from the beginning of the world to the sixteenth yeare of King Edward the third in whose time he lived.
  • 51 Matthew Paris, a benedictine Monke of Saint Albans, writ a History, chiefly Ecclesiasticall, of the English Nation, from William the Conquerour, to the last yeare of King Henry the third, and li∣ved about the time of King Edward the third.
  • 52 William Pachenton an Englishman, writ a History of the English Nation, and lived about the tim of King Edward the third.
  • 53 Bartholmeus Anglicus, a Franciscan Fryer, writ a Booke Intituled De Pro∣prietatibus rerum, and a Chronicle of the Scots, and lived in the yeare 1360. in the time of King Edward the third.
  • 54 Nicholas Trivet, borne in Norfolke, of a worshipfull Family, became a Domi∣dican Fryer, writ many excellent workes in Divinity and Philosophy; also An∣nals of the English Kings, from King Stephen, to King Edward the second, and lived in the yeare 1307. in the time of King Edward the third.
  • 55. Alexander Essebiensis Pryor of a Mo∣nastery of Regular Canons, writ divers learned workes, amongst other an Epitome of the British History: and lived in the yeare 1360. in the time of King Edward the third.
  • 56 John Froyssart borne in the Low Coun∣tries, writ a Chronicle in the French tongue, containing seventy foure yeares; Namely, beginning with King Edward the third, and nding with King Henry the fourth, in whose time he lived; whose Chronicle, Sir John Bourchier knight translated into English, and John Sley∣den a French man hath lately contract∣ed into an Epitome.
  • Page  [unnumbered]57 Thomas de la Moore, borne in Glo∣cestershire, in the time of King Edward the first, by whom as having twenty pounds land, holden by knights service, he was made a Knight, and afterward being very inward with King Edward the second, writ a History of his life and death.
  • 58 Thomas Rodbourne an Englishman, and a Bishop, writ a Chronicle of his Na∣tion, and lived in the yeare 1412. in the time of King Henry the fourth.
  • 59 John Trevisa borne in Glocestershire, a Priest, translated Polychronicon into English, adding to it an Eighth Book, In∣tituled De Memorabilibus eorum tem∣porum, containing from the yeare 1342. to the yeare 1460. He writ also of the Acts of King Arthur, and Descriptions both of Britaine and Ireland, and lived in the time of King Edward the fourth.
  • 60 John Harding a Gentleman of a good Family in the North, writ a Chronicle in verse, of the Kings of England, to the Reigne of King Edward the fourth; whrein he alldgeth many Records, which he had got in Scotland, that testifie the Scottish Kings submissions to the Kings of England he lived in the yeare 1448. in the time of King Henry the sixth.
  • 61 John Capgrave, borne in Kent, an Hermit Fryer, writ many learned workes in Divinity, and a Catalogue of the Eng∣lish Saints, and lived in the yeare. 1464. in the time of King Edward the fourth.
  • 62 John Lydgate, Monke of Saint Ed∣mundsbury in Suffolke, writ divers workes in verse, and some in prose: as the lives of King Edward, and King E∣thelstan, of the round Table of King Ar∣thur, and lived in the yeare 1470. in the time of King Edward the fourth.
  • 63 John Weathamstead, Abbot of Saint Albans, in his worke of English Affaires, accuseth Geoffrey of Monmouth, of meere Fabulousnesse, and lived about the yeare 1440.
  • 64 Gulielmus Elphinston a Scotchman, Bishop of Aberdene, writ the Antiqui∣tis of Scotland, and the Statutes of Councells, and lived in the yeare 1480. in the time of James the third King of Scotland.
  • 65 George Buchanan a Scotchman, writ the story of Scotland from Fergusius, to Queene Mary, in whose time he lived.
  • 66 William Caxton an Englishman, writ a Chronicle to the three and twenty∣eth yeare of King Edward the Fourth, which he cals Fructus Temporum: also a Description of Britaine, the life of Saint Edward, and the History of King Ar∣thur, and lived in the yeare 1484.
  • 67 Thomas Walsingham borne in Nor∣folke, a Benedictine Monke of Saint Al∣bans, writ two Histories; One shorter, the other larger; the first beginning from the yeare 1273. and continued to the yeare 1423. The other, beginning at the com∣ming in of the Normans, and continu∣ed to the beginning of King Henry the sixth, to whom he Dedicated his worke.
  • 68 Robert Fabian a Sheriffe of London, writ a Concordance of Histories, from Brute the first King of the Britaines, to the last yeare of King Henry the second; and another worke from King Richard the first, to King Henry the seventh, in whose time he lived.
  • 69 Sir Thomas Moore borne in London, Lord Chancellour of England; besides many other learned workes, writ the Life of King Richard the third; and dyed for denying the Kings Supremacy, in the Reigne of King Henry the Eight, in the yeare 1535.
  • 70 Hector Boethius a Scotchman, writ a Catalogue and History of the Kings of Scotland: also a Description of that king∣dome, and lived in the yeare 1526. in the time of James the fifth, King of Scot∣land.
  • 71 Polydor Virgill, an Italian, but made here in England Arch-deacon of Wells; amongst other his learned workes, writ the History of England, from its first begin∣ning, to the thirtyeth yeare of King Hen∣ry the Eighth, to whom he Dedicated his Worke.
  • 72 Edward Hall a Lawyer, writ a Chroni∣cle which he cals the Union of the two Ro∣ses, the Red and the White, containing from the beginning of King Henry the fourth, to the last yeare of King Henry the eighth, and dyed in the yeare 1547.
  • 73 John Leland, a Londoner, amongst di∣vers other workes, writ a Booke of the An∣tiquity of Britaine, and of the famous men and Bishops in it, and lived in the yeare 1546. in the time of King Henry the Eighth.
  • 74 John Rogers, first a Papist, and after∣ward Page  [unnumbered] a Protestant, amongst other his lear∣ned workes writ a History from the begin∣ning of the world; and lived most in Ger∣many, in the yeare 1548. in the time of King Edward the sixth.
  • 75 Philip Commines, a knight of Flan∣ders, writ the lives of Lewis & Charles the Eighth, Kings of France, wherein he handles many passages betweene them and the Kings of England their contempora∣ries.
    Of the Moderne, These:
  • 76 Richard Grafton a Citizen of Lon∣don, writ a Chronicle from the beginning of the world, to the beginning of the Reign of Queene Elizabeth, in whose time he lived.
  • 77 Raphaell Holinshed, a Minister, writ a large Chronicle, from the Conquest to the yeare 1577. and was continued by others, to the yeare 1586.
  • 78 Doctor Goodwin Bishop of Hereford, writ the Lives of King Henry the eight, King Edward the sixth, and Queen Ma∣ry, & lived in the time of Qu. Elizabeth
  • 79 Doctor Heyward writ the History of the first Kings, William the Conquerour, William Rufus, and Henry the first, al∣so the Reigne of King Henry the fourth, and Edward the sixth, and lived to the time of King James.
  • 80 Samuel Daniel writ a Chronicle of the Kings of England, to the end of King Edward the third, and is continued by John Trussell to the beginning of King Henry the seventh.
  • 81 Sir Francis Bacon Viscount, Viscount S. Albans, hath written a History of the Reigne of King Henry the seventh, in a most elegant stile, and lived in the time of King James.
  • 82 John Fox writ three large Volumes of the Acts and Monuments of the Church; particularly treating of the English Mar∣tyrs in the Reignes of King Henry the eighth, and Queene Mary, and lived in the time of Queene Elizabeth.
  • 83 Thomas Cowper, Bishop of Winche∣ster, writ Chronicle Notes of all Nations, specially of England, from the beginning of the world to his owne time, and lived in the time of Queene Elizabeth.
  • 84 William Camden King at Armes, writ the life of Queene Elizabeth, and a Description of Britaine, and lived in the time of King James.
  • 85 William Martin Esquire, writ the Reignes of the Kings of England, from William the Conquerour, to the end of King Henry the eighth: to which was af∣terward added the Reignes of King Ed∣ward the sixth, Queen Mary, and Queen Elizabeth.
  • 86 Francis Biondi an Italian Gentleman, and of the Privy Chamber to King Charles, hath written in the Italian tongue, the Civill Warres between the two Houses of Lancaster and Yorke, from King Richard the second, to King Henry the seventh: Translated elegantly into English by Henry Earle of Monmouth, now living.
  • 87 Henry Isaacson a Londoner, hath written a Chronology of all kingdoms, from the beginning of the world to the yeare 1630. being the fifth yeare of King Charles his Reigne.
  • 88 Nicholas Harpsefield Arch-deacon of Canterbury, hath written a Chronicle of all the Bishops of England, to which Ed∣mund Campian the Iesuite, made an Addition.
  • 89 John Stow Citizen of London, writ a Chronicle from Brute to the end of Qu. Elizabeth, and is continued to this pre∣sent time, being the 18. yeare of King Charles, by Edmund Howes a Lon∣doner.
  • 90 John Speed a Londoner, writ the Sto∣ry of Britaine, from the first beginning to the yeare 1605. being the second yeare of King James.
  • 91 William Abington Esquire, hath writ∣ten the Reign of King Edward the fourth in a very fine stile, and is yet living.
  • 92 Thomas Fuller Batchelour of Divini∣ty, and Prebendary of Sarum, hath writ∣ten the Holy Warre in very fine language, wherein he relates the Acts of our Kings of England in the Holy Land, and is now living.
  • 93 Andre du Chesne, a Frenchman, Geo∣grapher to the King of France, hath writ∣ten the History of England, Scotland & Ireland, from their first beginnings, to the seventeenth yeare of our present Sove∣raigne Lord King Charles.
The end of the Catalogue of Authors.
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A CHRONICLE OF THE KINGS OF ENGLAND from the time of the Romans Government, unto the Raigne of King CHARLES.

Of the first knowne times of this Island.

ALthough we begin the Aera of our Computation from William called the Conquerour, as though he were the first King of our English Nation: Yet before him; were many other excellent Kings; and their Acts perhaps as worthy to bee knowne, if they could be knowne. But seeing after ages can know nothing of former times but what is Recorded by writing: It hath followed that as the first Writers were Poets: So the first writings have been Fictions; and nothing is delivered to Posterity of the most ancient times, but very Fables: Such as is the story of Albina (of whom they say, this Island was called Al∣bion: though others say, ab albis rupibus, of the white cliffes) that shee should be the eldest of the two and thirty daughters of Dioclesian King of Syria, (such as ne∣ver was) who being marryed to two and thirty Kings, in one night killed all their husbands: for which fact, they were put in a shippe, themselves alone without any Pylo, so to try their adventure, and by chance arrived in this Island, of whom Gy∣ants were begotten. And if you like not of this; then have you the story of Albion the sonne of Neptune, of whom the Island tooke its name. But when these are ex∣ploded; there followes another with great Attestation, and yet as very a Fable as these; namely the story of the Trojan Brute, (of whom the Island they say, was called Britaine: though many other causes are given of the name:) as likewise the story of Brutes cosin Corinaeus, (of whom they say, the Country of Cornwall had its name, to whom it was given, for overcomming the Giant Gogmagog:) and that Brute having three sonnes, Lectrine, Albanact, and Camber; he gave at his death to his eldest sonne Locrine, all the land on this side Humber, and called it Logria; to his second sonne Albanact, all the land beyond Humber, of whom it was called Albania, (now Scotland:) and to his youngest sonne Camber, all the land beyond the river of Severne, of whom it was called Cambria, (now Wales:) with other such stuffe, which may please children, but not riper Judgements; and were first broached by Geoffry Arch∣deacon Page  2 of Monmouth: for which all the Writers of his time cryed shame upon him; and yet can scarce keepe many at this day, from giving credit to his Fictions.

And when we are once gotten out of Fables, and come to some truth; yet that truth is delivered in such slender draughts, and such broken pieces, that very small benefit can be gotten by the knowing it, and was not till the time of Iulius Caesar, a thousand yeares after the Fable of Brute: at which time, the Island was yet but in manner of a Village, being without Walls, as having no shipping, (which are in∣deed the true Wals of an Island) but onely certaine small vessels, made of boards and wicker. And as they had no ships, for defence without: So neither had they any Forts, for defence within: scarce any houses but such as were made of stakes and boughes of trees fastned together; Neither was it yet come to be a Kingdome, but was Governed by a number of petty Rulers: So as Kent onely had in it (as Caesar calleth them) foure Kings; Cingetorix, Carvilius, Taximagulus, and Segonax: which division, as it made the Britaines the more easie to be conquered, so it made the Romans the longer in conquering. For if they had beene one united body, one or two battailes might have made a conquest of the whole, where being thus divi∣ded, there was need to be as many battailes as there were divisions; So as it was ma∣ny yeares, before the Romanes could conquer the whole Island; even from the time of Iulius Caesar, to the time of the Emperour Domitian; not much lesse then two hundred yeares. It is true, after Caesars first comming, the Island grew sensible of this defect of their division, and thereupon by consent of a great part, made choyce of Cassibelan, King of the Trinovants, who had his seate at Verulam, to be Generall of their warres; which made indeed some little stoppe to the Romanes proceedings, but after the losse of a battaile or two, they fell againe into a relapse of their former defect, and thought it better to secure every one his owne, by his owne meanes, then by a generall power, to hazard all at once; whereby it came afterward to be true: Dum singuli pugnant, universi vincuntur. Yet before the Coutry could bee wholly Conquered; at first by reason of the Nations valour, seeking to keepe themselves free, and afterward by reason of the insolency of the garrison souldiers, that sought to make them slaves, many great oppositions were made, amongst which the most memorable was that of Voadicia, a certaine Queene of the Country, who having beene by the Romane souldiers herselfe abused, and her daughters ravished, used meanes to levy an Army of six score thousand men, whom she led herselfe into the field, and set upon the Romanes in their chiefe townes, which were London, Verulam, and Camalodunum (now Malden in Essex;) of whom she flew above seventy thousand: but then in a second battaile, had fourescore thousand of her owne Army slaine, after which defeate, for avoyding of slavery, she poysoned herselfe.

This Island for a long time, was so much esteemed of the Romanes, that their Emperors sometimes came hither in person; as first the Emperor Adrian, in the yeare 124. who made a great wall of earth betweene England and Scotland, and ha∣ving set the Country in order, returned. After him sometime, Severus the Empe∣ror in the yeare 212. came over into Britine to represse the Incurions of the Picts and Scots, by whom in a battaile neere Yorke, he was wounded and thereof dyed, or as others say, he dyed of age and sicknesse. Afterward in the yeare 305. Constanti∣us the Emperor came into Britaine, and ended his life at Yorke, making that City fa∣mous for the death and buriall of two great Emperors; and yet more famous for the honor done to Constantine the Great, sonne of Constantius, who in that City was first saluted Emperor. But notwithstanding the great estimation the Romanes a long time made of this Island, yet at last, after five hundred yeares they had kept it in subjection, they voluntarily left it: the charge of keeping it, being greater, then the benefit; for to keepe it in subjection, they maintained no fewer than fourescore thousand souldiers in pay, and when warres grew amongst themselves at home, they could no longer spare so many abroad, but recalled them home: but then, though they left Britaine, yet they left not the Britaines, but carried them, at least, a great part of them away with them; of whom the most were slaine in their service, and the rest planted in that part of France, which of them was afterward, and is to this Page  3 day called Britaine. And now one would thinke, the Island should be in good case, being freed from them that kept them in subjection, but it proved to bee in worse case being at liberty, then it was before in servitude, for being deprived of their ablest men, and at the same time, their King Lucius happening to dye without issue, they were left as a few loose sticks without the bond of a Governour: which the Picts and Scots observing, thought now was the time to make the Country their owne, and thereupon made invasions upon it with all their Forces. Whereupon the Britaines having none left of their Native Kings to succeed; and knowing they could ill manage the Body of an Army without a Head: they make choyce of Vor∣tigerne Earle of Cornwall, one extracted from the British Line; and he, whether so advised by his Cabinet Counsellor, the Propheticall Merlin, or as finding his owne strength too weake to make resistance; implores first ayde of the Romanes, and they making answer, they had businesse enough to do of their owne, and lea∣ving them to themselves, he then fled to the Saxons for ayde; a warlike people of Germany, and who had greater swarmes then their hives would well hold.

And here we may plainly see how dangerous a thing it is for a Nation, to call in strangers to their ayd, and especially in any great number; for though they come at first but mercenaries, yet once admitted, and finding their owne strength, they soone grow Masters, as here it proved with the Saxons.

But before we speake further of the comming in of the Saxons, who were at that time Infidels, and brought with them their two Idols, Woden and Frya, (whereof two of our weeke dayes, Wednesday and Friday, take their names; it will be fit to say something of the state of the Christian Church in this Island. First then, it is recorded, that in the yeare 63. what time Arviragus raigned here, Ioseph of Arim∣thea (who buried the body of Christ) came into this Island, and laid the foundation of the Christian Faith in the Westerne parts, at a place called then Hvalon; now Glastenbury; and that there came with him, Mary Magdalen, Lazarus, and Martha: and more then this, that Simon Zelotes one of the Apostles suffered martyrdome here in Britaine: and more then this, that both St. Peter and St. Paul came into this Island and Preached the Gospell; all which and more to this purpose, is Recorded by Authors of good Account: though it be hard believing, That persons, and specially women of so great age, as these must needes be at this time, should take so long a journey. But howsoever it was, certaine it is, that the doctrine of Christianity was about this time planted in this Island, though it made afterwards but small progresse, and that with some persecution; as in which time, St. Alban suffered martyrdome at Verulam, and at Liechfield shortly after, no fewer then a thousand. After this, in the yeare 180 what time Lucius was King of this Island, Eleutherius then Bishop of Rome, sent Fa∣ganus and Damianus to him: upon whose preaching, the Temples of the Heathenish Flamins and Arch-flamins (one and thirty in number) were converted to so many Bi∣shops Sees; whereof London, Yorke, and Caerleyn (now St. Davids) were made the Metropolitans of the Province. And there is a Table remaining at this day, in the Parish Church of St. Peter on Cornhill London, which recordeth; that the Founda∣tion thereof was laid by this King Lucius, and that this Church was the Cathe∣dral to that Archbishops See. In the yeare 359. a Councel was holden at Ariminum in Italie; where foure hundred Westerne Bishops were Assembled, whereof three went out of Britaine, and gave their voyces against the Arian Heresie. After this, about the yeare 420. rose up in this Island, one Pelagius a Monke, brought up in the Monastery of Bangor in Wales, who spread the poyson of his Heresie, first in this his Native Countrey, and afterward all the world over. And these had beene the chiefe passages in matters Ecclesiasticall within this Island, when the Saxons were called in, about the yeare 450.

And now under the Conduct of two brothers, Hengist and Horsa, came over nine thousand Saxons with their wives and children, to a••ist the Britaines aginst the Scots, and were appointed the Isle of Thanet to Inhabit. With which assistance the Britaines give their enemies battaile, and overcome them: So as they accounted the Saxons as Angels sent from heaven, and then allowed them Kent also fo their Page  4 Inhabiting. Not long after Hengist obtained of King Vortigern the property of so much ground, as he could enclose with a Buls Hide: which cutting into thongs, hee there built the Castle, Facti de nomine, called Thong Castle. And now having built it he invites Vrtigern to a Feast, where falling in love with Rowena, the beauti∣full daughter of Hengist, and marrying her, it put Hengist into such a height of bold∣nesse, that he began to aspire, sending for greater Forces to come over to him; as meaning to transplant himselfe hither, and to make this Island his Inheritance: which the British Lords perceiving, and not able to weane their King from his new wife, and her father Hengist, they Depose him; and in his place set up his sonne Vortimer, a true lover of his Country: who presently in a pitcht battaile neere unto Aylesford in Kent, set upon the Saxons; where Catigern the brother of Vorimer, and Hrs, of Hengist, in single ight hand to hand slew each other. In which place Catigern was buried, and a Monument in memory of him Erected, the stones whereof at this day are standing in a great Plaine in the Parish of Aylesford; which instead of Catigern, is corruptly called Kits-Cotyhouse. Another the like Monument was erected for Hors, though now defaced; remembred onely by the Towne where it stood, called Horstead. Three other battailes after this were fought betweene the Britaines and the Saxons: one at Craford; another at Weppeds-fleete; the third upon Colmore: in which last, the Britaines got so great a victory, that the Saxons were cleane driven out of Kent, and in Thanet also not suffered also to rest; so as shortly after, Hengist with his Saxons departed the Kingdome, as being now out of hope to make his Fortune in this Island. But while Vortimer was ths intentive for his Countries li∣berty; Rowena the former Kings wife, being daughter to Hengist, was as intentive to bring it into servitude; which knowing she could not do as long as Vortimer lived, she used meanes by poyson, to take away his life, after he had beene King the space of foure yeeres, and then by the witchcraft of faire words, so enchanted the Bri∣tish Nobility, that her husband Vortigern was againe established in the Kingdome; which was no sooner don, but Hengist, (relying upon his sonne Vortigerns love) with a mighty Army attempts to returne againe into the Island; when being re∣sisted, he makes a shew, as if hee desired nothing but to fetch away his daughter Rowena, and to have a friendly conference for continuance of amity: which moti∣on seeming reasonable, a place and time of conference was appointed: the time upon the first of May; the place upon the Plaine of Ambrii, now called Salisbury; whither the plaine meaning Britaines came unarmed, according to agreement; but the fraudulent Saxons under their long Cassocks had short skeynes hidden, with which, upon a watch-word given, they set upon the Britaines, and of their unar∣med Nobility slew three, some say five hundred, & took the King himselfe prisoner, whom they would not release, till they were put in possession of these foure Counties, Kent, Sussex, Suffolke, and Norfolke. Whereupon Vortigern, whether fearing a second Deposing, or whether so advised by his Cabinet Counsailour the Prophe∣ticall Merlin, betooke him into Wales, and there built him a strong Castle for his safeguard; while the Saxons comming daily in great swarmes into the Land, had at this time overrunne all; if Aurelius Ambrosius a Romane borne, but affected to the British Nation, had not landed at Tones in Devonshire, to whom resorted great troopes of Britaines. His first expedition was against Vortigern, (as the first cause of the Britaines misery) whose Castle he besieged; and whether by wilde fire, or by fire from Heaven, both he and his Castle, and all that were in it were burnt to ashes. To this Ambrosius is ascribed the admirable Monument in Wiltshire, now called Stoneh••ge, in the place where the Briaines had beene treacherously laugh∣tered and interred; and of whom the Towne of Ambersbury beares its name. After this he set upon the Saxons, and in many batrailes discomited them; till at last fal∣ling sicke in the City of Winchester, a Saxon, in shew a Britain, and in habit a Physi∣tian, was sent unto him, who instead of Physick, ministred poyson, whereof he died, in the yeare 497. after he had raigned two and thirty yeares.

After Ambrosius, succeeded Uter, (some say his brother, others, a Britaine) called Pendragon, of his Royall Banner borne ever before him; wherein was portrayed a Page  5 Dragon with a golden Head, as in our English Camps, it is at this day borne for the Imperiall standard. And he also in many battailes discomfited the Saxons, till after eighteene yeares Raigne he came to his end by treachery; dying by poyson put into a Well, whereof he usually dranke; in the yeare 515.

After him succeeded his sonne Arthur, begotten of the faire Lady Igren, wife of the Duke of Cornwall, to whose bed the Art of Merlin brought him in the likenesse of her husband; and hee in telve set battailes discomfited the Saxons; but in one most memorable in which giding himselfe with his sword called Callibourne, he flew upon his Enemies, and with his owne hand slew eight hundred of them; which is but one of his wonderfull deedes, whereof there are so many reported, that hee might well be reckoned amongst the Fabulous, if there were not now true to give them credit. Amongst other his Acts, he Insti∣tuted the Order of Knights of the Round Table, to the end there might be no que∣stion about Precedence, and to teach Heroicall minds, nor to stand upon place, but Merit. But this great Prince, for all his great valour, was at last in a battaile woun∣ded, whereof he died, in the yeare 542. after he had raigned six and twenty yeares.

After King Arthur succeeded his cosin Constantine; & after his three yeares raigne, Aurelius Conanus the Nephew of King Arthur; whose Raigne is so uncertaine, that some say, he raigned onely two, some, three yeares, some againe thirty, and some three and thirty. After Conanus succeeded Vortiporus, who after many victories a∣gainst the Saxons, and foure yeares Raigne, died. After whom succeeded Malgo Co∣nanus, and Raigned six yeares. After him Careticus, who setting upon the Saxons and beaten, led into the Towne of Chichester, whereupon the Saxons catching certaine Sparrowes and fastning fire to their feete, let them fly into the Towne, where light∣ing upon traw, and other matter apt to take fire, the whole City in short space was burnt; and thereupon Careticus flying, secured himselfe amongst the Mountaines of Wales, where he dyed, after he had unprosperously Raigned three yeares: and from that time forth, the Britaines lost their whole Kingdome in the East part of the Island, and were confined in the West by the rivers Severne and Dee. After Careti∣cus succeeded Cadwan, who Raigned two and twenty yeares. After him his sonne Cadwallo, who Raigned eight and forty yeares, and then died; whose body was bu∣ried in St. Martins Church neere Ludgate, and his Image of brasse placed upon the same gate, for a terrour to the Saxons. In his time, the doctrine of Mahomet began to spread it selfe all the Easterne world over. After Cadwallo succeeded his sonne Cadwalladar; in whose time so great a Famine, and afterward Mortality hapned, continuing eleven yeares, that the Land became in a manner desolate: in so much, that the King and many of his Lords were driven to forsake their native Coun∣try, and Cadwalladar himselfe went to his cousin Alan King of little Britaine in France. At which time the Saxons taking advantage of his absence, came over in swarmes, and dispossessed the forlorne Britaines of all they had, and divided the Land amongst themselves. Whereupon Cadwalladar, obtaining assistance of his cou∣sin Alan, was comming over to restraine their insolencies; when making prayers to God for good successe, an Angell appeared to him, or at least to his seeming hee heard a voyce, that forbad him the enterprise, declaring that it was not Gods will, the Britaines should rule this Land any longer, and therefore bade him hie him to Rome, and receive of Pope Sergius the habit of Religion, wherein he should die and rest in peace. Which accordingly he did: and in him ended the blood of the British Kings; in the yeare 689. So as Britaine now, was no longer Britine; but a Colony of the Saxons.

And now is time to speake of the Heptarchy of the Saxons; so much spoken of, by all Writers and to shew by what degrees the Britaies lost, and the Saxons got the whole possession of this Island: for this Heptarchie or division of this Island into seven Kingdomes, came not in all at once, nor yet in an equall partition, but some good distance of time, one after another, and as the Invadour had strength to expell the Natives.

Page  6

The first Kingdome being of Kent.

THe first Kingdome of the Saxons began by Hengist, in the yeare 455. con∣taining all Kent, and continued 372. yeares, during the raignes of seventeene Kings, of whom as many as performed any memorable Act, shall be re∣membred, and for the rest, it will be no losse to passe them over in silence. Of these seventeene Kings, Ethelbert being the fifth, was the first Saxon Christian King of this Island, converted by Austin the Monke, whom Pope Gregory sent hither to that purpose, with forty others, in the yeare 595. to whom King Ethelbert gave his chiefe City of Canterbury, and his owne Royall Palace there, made since the Ca∣thedrall of that See; withdrawing himselfe to Reulver in the Isle of Thanet, where he erected a Palace for himselfe and his successors. He gave him also an old Tem∣ple, standing without the East wall of the City, which he honoured with the name of St. Paneras, and then added a Monastery to it, and Dedicated it to St. Peter and Paul, appointing it to be the place for the Kentish Kings Sepulchers. But in regard of Austin the procurer, both Panras, Peter, and Paul were soone forgotten, and it was; and is to this day, called St. Austines: which Abbey St. Austin enriched with divers Reliques which he brought with him from Rome; amongst which was a part of Christs seamelesse Coate, and of Aarons Rodde. This King after his owne con∣version, converted also Sebert King of the East Angles, and assisted him in the buil∣ding of the Cathedrall Church o St. Paul London; as also the Church of St. Peter, on the West of London, then called Thorny: and himselfe at Rochester built the Ca∣thedrall Church there, which he Dedicated to the Apostle St. Andrew; and dying, when he had Raigned six and fifty yeares, was buried at Canterbury. And thus by this first Saxon Kingdome, was all Kent lopped off from the Britaines Dominion; and this was their first impairing, and this happened in the Raigne of Ambrosius be∣fore spoken of. The sixth King of Kent was Ethelbald; who at first an Apostata, was afterwards converted, and built a Chappell within the Monastery of St. Peter and Paul at Canterbury. The seventh King was Ercombert, a vertuous and religious Prince, who first commanded the observing of Lent; and in his daies, the Archbi∣shop Honorius divided Kent into Parishes. The eighth King was Egbert, who obtai∣ned the kingdome by murthering his Nephews: whose sister the Lady Dompnena, founded the Abbey of Minster in Kent. The eleventh King was Withred, who foun∣ded the Priory of St. Merton at Dover. The last was Baldred, who overcome by Egbert King of the West Saxons, left Kent a Province to that Kingdome, in the yeare 827.

The second Kingdome being of the South Saxons.

THe second Kingdome of the Heptarchie, was of the South Saxons, and be∣gan by Ella, in the yeare 488. containing Sussex and Surrey, and continued 113 yeares, during the raigne of five Kings onely, of whom Cissa being the second founded the City of Chichester, and raigned as some say threescore and six∣teene yeares. And then Berthan being the last King, was overcome by Ine King of the West Saxons, and his Country became a Province to that Kingdome, in the yeare 601. and thus as Kent before, so now Sussex and Surrey were lopped off from the Britaines Dominion: and this was a second impairing, which also happened in the Raigne of the British King Ambrosius.

Page  7

The third Kingdome being of the West Saxons.

THe third Kingdome of the Heptarchie, was of the West Saxons, and began by Cerdic, in the yeare 519. containing Cornwall, Devonshire, Dorseshire, So∣mersetshire, Wiltshire, Hampshire, and Barkeshire, and continued 561. yeares, during the Raignes of nineteene Kings, of whom this Cerdic was the first: in whose time, Porth a Saxon landed in the West, at a place from him called afterward Portesmouth, and ayded Cerdic in his conquest. And this happened in the Raigne of King Arthur: and as Kent, Sussex, and Surrey before, so now these seven other shires were lopped off from the Britaines Dominion: and this was a third impai∣ring. The sixth King of the West Saxons was Kingills, who was the first Christi∣an King of this kingdome, converted by Berynus an Italian Divine, to whom hee gave the City of Dorchester, neere to Oxford; who therein erected his Episcopall See. The seventh King was Kenwald, who at first an Apostata was afterward con∣verted, and founded the Cathedrall of Winchester, and the Abbey of Mamesbery; whose wife Segburg also built a house of devotion in the Isle of Sheppey, wherein herselfe became a Nunne, and was afterward elected Abbesse of Ely. The eleventh King was Ine, who ordained many good lawes, which are yet extant in the Saxon tongue, and are translated into Latin, by the learned Master William Lam∣bert. This King built a Colledge at Wells bearing the name of St. Andrews, which af∣terward King Kenulph made an Episcopall See. He also in most stately manner new built the Abbey of Glastenbery; and out of his devotion to the See of Rome, he injoyned every one of his Subjects, that possessed in his house of any one kinde of goods to the value of nineteene pence, to pay yearely upon Lammas day, one pen∣ny to the Pope; which at first was contributed under the name of the Kings Almes, but afterward was paid by the name of Peter pence. At last hee went to Rome, and there tooke upon him the habit of Religion, and therein died. His wife also became a veyled Nunne, and afterward was made Abbesse of Barking neere London. The thirteenth King was Cuthred, who first permitted the bodies of the dead to be buried within the walls of their Cities, which before were used to bee buried in the fields. The foureteenth was Sigebert, who for his cruelty and exacti∣ons, was by his subjects forced to fly into the woods to hide himselfe, where by a swinherd hee was slaine. The fifteenth was Kenwolph, who founded the Cathe∣drall Church of St. Andrews at Wells, and was afterward slaine by Kynoard, whom he had banished. The sixteenth King was Brithrick, whose Queene Ethelburg, ha∣ving prepared a poyson for another, the King chanced to tast it, and thereof died. In feare of which chance the Queene fled into France; where Charles the then King for her excellent beauty, offered her the choyce of himselfe or his sonne in marriage: but she out of her lustfull humour choosing the son, was thereupon de∣bard of both, and thrust into a Monastery, where committing adultery, she was dri∣ven from thence, and ended her life in great misery. For her sake the West Saxons ordained a Law, that no Kings wife should hereafter have the Title or Majesty of a Queene, which for many yeares after was severely executed.

The fourth Kingdome being of the East Saxons.

THe fourth Kingdom of the Heptarchy was of the East Saxons, & began by Erchenwyn, in the yeare 527. containing Essex and Middlesex, and continued 281 years, during the Raignes of foureteene Kings; of whom the third was Sebert, who first built the Cathedrall of St. Paul London, which had formerly beene the Temple of Diana: He likewise Founded the Church of St. Peter in the West of London, at a place called Thorny, where some time stood the Temple of Apollo, which being overthrowne by an Earthquake, King Lucius new built for the service of God; & that againe being decayed, this King restored to a greater beauty, & with Page  8 his Queene Athelgarda was there buried. The ninth King was Sebba, who after thirty yeares peaceable Raigne relinquished the Crowne, & tooke upon him a Re∣ligious habit, in the Monastery of St. Paul London; where dying, his body was In∣tumbed in a Coffin of gray Marble, the cover coaped, and as yet standeth in the North wall of the Chancell of the same Church. The twelveth was Offa, famous for the beauty of his countenance, who both enlarged with buildings, and enrich∣ed with lands the Church of Westminster, and after eight yeares Raigne went to Rome, and was there shorne a Monke, and in that habit died. The fourteenth was Suthred, whom Egbert King of the West Saxons subdued, and made his Kingdome a Province to his owne. And thus besides the former Shires, these two also were lopped off from the Britaines Dominion, and this was a fourth impairing.

The fifth Kingdome being of Northumberland.

THe fifth Kingdome was of Northumberland, and began by Ella and Ida, in the yeare 547. Containing Yorkeshire, Durham, Lancashire, Westmerland, Cumberland, and Northumberland, and continued 379. yeares, during the Raignes of three and twenty Kings, of whom nothing is recorded of these two first, but that they builded the Castle of Bamburg. The seventh King was Ethel∣fryd, who at Caerlegion (now Westchester) made a slaughter of twelve hundred Christian Monkes, and was himselfe afterward slaine, by Redwald King of the East Angles. The thirteenth King was Osred, whose wife Cutburga, out of a loathing wearinesse of wedlocke, sued out a divorce from her husband, and built a Nunnery at Winburne in Dorsetshire, where in a Religious habit she ended her life. The six∣teenth King was Cednulph, who after eight yeares Raigne, left his Royall robes, and put on the habit of a Monke, in the Isle of Lindesfern or Holy Island. Unto this King the Venerable Bde, a Saxon and a Priest in the Monastery of Peter and Paul at Werimouth neere to Durham, Dedicate his worke of the English History, which hee continued from the first entrance of the Saxons into this Island, to the yeare 731. containing after his owne account 285. yeares. The seventeenth King was Egbert, who after twenty yeares Raigne forsooke the world also, and shore himselfe a Monke; whose-brother being Archbishop of Yorke, erected a notable Library there, and stored it with an infinite number of learned bookes. The last King was Oswald, after whom this Kingdome yeelded to the protection of Egbert King of the West Saxons, who was now in the yeare 926. become absolute Monarch of the whole Island. And thus by the erection of this fifth Kingdome, were the six Nor∣therne shires lopped off from the Britaines Dominion, and this was a fifth impai∣ring.

The sixth Kingdome being of Mercia.

THe sixth Kingdome was of Mercia, and began in Crida, in the yeare 522. containing Huntington, Rutland, Lincolne, Nottingham, Warwickshire, Leycester, Northampton, Derbyshire, Oxfordshire, Cheshire, Shropshire, Glostershire, Stafford∣shire, Buckinghamshire, Bedfordshire, and Hartfordshire, and continued 202. yeares, du∣ring the Raignes of twenty Kings; eight of whom in a continued succession kept the Imperiall Crowne of the Heptarchie: for though other Raigned as Kings in their owne Territories, yet among them ever one was the supreme head of the rest, and was called King of Engle-lond, till Egbert the West Saxon brought them all into one. The fifth of these Kings of Mercia was Penda, who was the first Christian King of the Mercians, and laid the Foundation of a faire Church at Medeshamstead, now called Peterborough. The seventh King was Ethelred, who Raigned thirty yeares, nd then gave over the Crowne, and became a Monke in the Monastery of Bradney in Lincolnshire, where in the yeare 716. he died. The eighth King was Ken∣red,Page  9 who after foure yeares raigne went to Rome, where he tooke upon him the ha∣bit of a Monke, and after other foure yeares dyed. The tenth King was Ethelbald, who at first was given to much lasciviousnesse of life, but being reprehended for it by Boniface Archbishop of Ments, was so farre converted that he Founded the Mo∣nastery of Crowland, driving in mighty piles of Oake into that Marish ground, where he laid a great and goodly building of stone; and after two and forty years Raigne was slaine in a battaile by Cuthred King of the West Saxons. The eleventh King was Offa, who greatly enlarged his Dominions; raigned nine and thirty yeares, and Founded the Monastery of St. Albans. The thirteenth King was Kenwolph, who raigned two and twenty yeares, and Founded the Monastery of Winchcombe in the County of Glocester, where his body was interred. The eighteenth King was Withlafe, who overcome by Egbert King of the West Saxons, held his Country af∣terward as his substitute and Tributary, acknowledging Egbert as now the sole Monarch of this Island. And by erection of this Mercian Kingdome, were seven∣teene shires moe lopped off from the Britaines Dominion, and was a sixth and a great impairing, so as now they were driven into a narrow roome.

The seventh Kingdome being of the East Angles.

THe seventh Kingdome was of the East Angles, and began by Uffa, in the yeare 575. containing Suffolke, Norfolke, Cambridgeshire, and the Isle of Ely, and continued 353. yeares, during the raigne of fifteene Kings, of whom the fifth was Sigebert, who first brought the light of the Gospell into his Dominions, and built a Schoole for education of youth, but whether at Oxford or Cambridge, is left a Quaere; and after three yeares Raigne shore himselfe a Monke in the Abbey of Cumbreburg, which himselfe had built: but being afterward violently drawne from thence by his Subjects the East Angles, to resist the Mercian King Penda, and refusing to use any other weapon but onely a white wand, was in a battaile by him slaine. The seventh King was Anna, who after thirteene yeares raigne, was also slaine by Penda the Mercian King. This King Anna was memorable chiely for the holinesse of his children, of whom his sonne Erkenwald was Bishop of London, and built the Abbey of Barking neere London. His eldest daughter Etheldrid was twice married, and yet continued a Virgin still, and at last became a Nunne, and is remembred to posterity by the name of St. Audrie. His second daughter named Sexburg, his third named Ethelburg, his fourth (a Naturall daughter) named Withburg: all entred in∣to Monasteries, and are Canonized all for Saints. The foureteenth King was Ethel∣bert, a learned and religious Prince, who being invited by Offa the Mercian King to marry Elfrid his daughter, came for that purpose to Offa's Court, then seated at Sut∣ton Walleys in the County of Hereford, and there by him was cruelly murthered. In whose memoriall notwithstanding, hee afterward built a faire Church at Hereford, the Cathedrall of that See, as though he could expiate a murther of the living, by a Monument to the dead, and were not rather a Monument of his owne impiety. The fifteenth King was Edmund, who assaulted by the Danes for his possessions, was more assaulted for his profession: for continuing constant in his Christian Faith, those Pagans first beat him with bats, then scourged him with whippes, nd lastly bound him to a stake, and with their arrowes shot him to death; whose body was buried at the Towne where Sigebert the East Anglian King, one of his Predecessors, had built a Church, and where afterward (in honour of him) was built another most spatious, of a wonderfull frame of Timber, and the name of the Towne upon the occasion of his buriall there, called to this day St. Edmunds bury. This Church and place, Suenus the Danish King burnt to ashes: but when his sonne Canutus had gotten possession of the English Crowne, terrified with a Vision of the seeming St. Edmund; in a religious devotion to expiate his Fathers sacriledge, hee built it anew most sumptuously, and offered his owne Crowne upon the Martyrs Tombe. After the death of this Edmund, the East Angles Country was possest by the Danes, and so Page  10 continued the space of fifty yeares, untill that Edmund surnamed the Elder, expelled those Danes, and made that Kingdome a Province to the West Saxons.

By that which hath beene said, it plainely appeares, by what degrees the Britaines lost, and the Saxons got the whole possession of this Island. For after that Vortigern in the yeare 455. had called in the Saxons, every Britaine King that succeeded him, lost some part or other of it to the Saxon, till at last in the yeare 689. Cdwllader the last Britaine King lost all; and then the Saxon Kings striving amongst them∣selves for soveraignty, they still gained one upon another, till at last in the yeare 818 Egbert King of the West Saxons reduced them all under his subjection, and then cau∣sed all the South of the Island to bee called England, according to the Angles of whom himselfe came; after whom they were no longer properly called Saxon Kings, but Kings of England, and so continued till the Danes, in the yeare 1017. made an interruption; of whose succession now comes the time to speake.

Of the Saxons that Raigned sole Kings of this Island, and may properly be called English Kings.

EGbert the eighteenth King of the West Saxons, is now become the first of the Kings of England, in whose time the Danes began first to infest the Land; as thinking they might do as much against the Saxons, as the Saxons had done against the Britaines; but though they made divers Invasions, and did great spoyle, yet they were still repelled. This King raigned six and thirty yeares, and dying in the yeare 836. was buried at Winchester. Of his issue, his daughter Edith was made Governesse of a Monastery of Ladies, by her planted in a place which the King her brother had given her, called Pollesworth, situate in Arden, in the North part of the County of Warwicke, where shee died and was burid, and the place in memory of her called St Edyths of Pollesworth.

To Egbert succeeded his sonne Ethelwolph, who in his youth was so addicted to a Religious life, that he was first made Deacon, and after Bishop of Winchester; but his father dying, he was intreated by his people to take upon him the Crowne, and by Pope Gregory the fourth, was to that end absolved of his Vow. His raigne was infested with many and great Invasions of the Danes, to whom notwithstanding hee gave incredible overthrowes. In the time of his Raigne, remembring his former Religious profession, he ordained that riches and lands due to holy Church, should be free from all Tribute or Regall services, and in great devotion went himselfe to Rome, where he lived a yeare; confirmed the grant of Peter pence, and agreed be∣side to pay yearely to Rome three hundred Markes. Returning home through France, and being a Widower, he there marryed Iudith, the beautifull daughter of Charles the Bald then Emperor; in honour of whom, in his owne Court, hee ever placed her in a chaire of Estate, with all other Majesticall complements of a Q••ene, contrary to the Law of the West Saxons formerly made; which so much dis∣pleased his Lords, that for it they were ready to Depose him; but howsoever hee lived not long after, having Raigned one and twenty yeares. His yongest sonne Neoto, was much addicted to learning, and was one of the first Divinity Readers in the University of Oxford, and Founded a Monastery in Cornwall, which of him was called Neotestock; and being dead his body was Interred in the County of Hun∣tington, at a place then called Arnulphsbury, and afterward, in regard of his Inter∣ment, St. Neotes, and now St. Nedes. This King was famous, for having foure sons, who all of them were Kings of this Land successively.

First after him Raigned his eldest sonne Ethelbald, in the yeare 857. who to his eternall shame, tooke to wife Iudith his fathers widdow, Raigned but two yeares and dying, was buried at Shirborn in Dorsetshire, at that time the Episcopal See. From this Iudith, married afterward to the Earle of Flanders, after divers descents, came Maude the wife of William the Conqueror, from whom are descended all our Kings ever since.

Page  11Next to the eldest Raigned the second sonne Ethelbert, all whose Raigne, which was onely five yeares, was perpetually disquieted with Invasions of the Danes, which yet were at last repelled. He died in the yeare 866. and was buried at Shir∣borne in Dorsetshire.

Next to the second Raigned his third sonne Ethelred, whose Raigne was more dis∣quieted with the Danes then any others before: for they Invading the Land, under the leading of Hungar, and Hubba, spoyled all the Country as they went, not sparing Religious places; amongst other, the goodly Monasteries of Bradney, Crowland, Peter∣borough, Ely, and Huntington, they laid levell with the ground: the Monkes and Nunnes they murthered or ravished; at which time a rare example of Chastity and Fortitude was seene in the Nunnes of Coldingham. For to avoyd the babarous pollutions of these Pagans, they deformed themselves by cutting off their upper lips and noses. Nine battailes in one yeare this King fought with the Danes, in most o them victorious; but at last received a wound whereof he died, and was buried in the Church at Winborne in Dorsetshire.

Next to the third Raigned his fourth son Alfred, in whose time came over grea∣ter swarmes of Danes then ever before, and had now got footing in the North, the West, & South parts of this Island, leaving this King nothing of all his great Monar∣chy, but only Somerset, Hampton, and Wiltshire; and not these neither altogether free, so as he was forced sometimes to flie into the Fennes and Marish grounds to secure himselfe, where he lived by Fishing and Fowling, and hunting of wilde beasts, till at last learning policy from adversity, and gathering courage from misery, hee ven∣tured in the habit of a common Minstrell, to enter the Danes Campe; where ha∣ving viewed the manner of their Encamping, and observed their security, he retur∣ned backe, shewing his Lords in what condition he found them: whereupon setting upon them at unawares, he not onely made of them a great slaughter, but brought upon them a greater terrour: for presently upon this the Danes sue for Peace, and deliver Hostages for performance of these Conditions; that their King should re∣ceive Baptisme, and their great Army depart quietly out of the Land. But though upon this agreement they departed for the present into France, yet the yeare follow∣ing they returned with greater Forces, forraging all parts of the Countrey in most cruell manner, though still encountred by this Valorous Prince, till hee ended his life in the yeare 901. after he had Raigned nine and twenty yeares. The vertues of this King, if they were not incredible, they were at least admirable, whereof these may be instances. The day and night containing foure and twenty houres, he designed equally to three speciall uses, observing them by the burning of a Taper set in his Chappell; (there being at that time, no other way of distinguishing them) Eight houres he spent in Contemplation, Reading and Prayers: Eight in provision for himselfe, his Health and Recreation: and the other eight in the Affaires of the Common-wealth and State. His Kingdome likewise he divided into Shires, Hun∣dreds and Tythings; ordaining that no man might remove out of his Hundred without security: by which course he so suppressed Theeves and Robbers, which had formerly encreased by the long warres, that it is said a boy or girle might open∣ly carry a bag of gold or silver, and carry it safely all the Country over. Besids his great Piety, he was also learned; and s farre as it may be a commendation in a Prince, a skilfull Musitian and an excellent Poet. All former Lawes hee caused to be survayed, and made choyce of the best, which hee translated into the English tongue; as also the Pastorall of St. Gregorie, the History of Bede, and Boetius his con∣solation of Philosophie; the Psalmes of David likewise he began to translate, but died before he could finish it. And so great a love he had to learning, that he made a Law, that all Freemen of the Kingdome, possessing two Hides of land, should bring up their sonnes in learning, till they were fifteene yeares of age at least, that so they might be trained to know God, to be men of understanding, and to live happily. His buildings were many, both for Gods service and for other publike use: as at Edlingsey a Monastery, at Winchester a new Minster, and at Shaftesbry a house of Nunnes; whereof he made his daughter Ethelgeda the Abbesse; but his Page  12 Foundation of the University of Oxford, exceeded all the rest: which he began in the yeare 895. and to furnish it with able Scholars, drew thither out of France, Grimbaldus and Scotus, and out of Wales, Asser, (who wrote his life) whose Le∣ctures he honoured often with his owne presence. And for a stocke of Frugality, he made a Survey of the Kingdome; and had all the particulars of his Estate, re∣gistred in a Booke; which he kept in his Treasury at Winchester. He Raigned se∣ven and twenty yeares, and dying was buryed in the Cathedrall Church of Saint Peter at Winchester, though removed afterward, into the Church of the new Mona∣stery, without the North-gate of the City called Hyde. His Wife Elsewith, Foun∣ded a Monastery of Nunnes at Winchester, and was there buryed. Their second daughter Ethelgeda, tooke upon her the Vow of Virginity; and by her Fathers ap∣pointment was made a Nunne of Shaftesbery, in the County of Dorset, in the Mo∣nastery ounded there by him, who is also accounted the Founder of the Towne it selfe.

King Alfred being deceased, his sonne Edward (called Edward the Elder) suc∣ceeded: not so learned as his Father; but in Valour his Equall, and Superiour in Fortune. For, first, he overcame his Cousin Ethelwald, who aspired to the Crowne; then the Danes, whose chiefe leader he lew in battaile; lastly the Welsh; but these last, more by humility shewed to their Prince Leolyn, then by force of Ames. But yet he must not have all the glory of his time; some must be impar∣ted to his sister Elflede; who being marryed to Ethelred Earle of Mercia, had by him a daughter, but with so grievous panes in her travaile, that ever after she re∣fused the nuptiall bed of her Husband, saying, it was a foolish pleasure, that brought with it so excessive paines. And thereupon after her husbands death, made choyce to follow the warres; assisting her brother both against the Welsh, and against the Danes, whom she brought to be at her disposing. Dying she was buryed at Gloce∣ster, in the Monastery of Saint Peter, which her Husband and her selfe had built. King Edwrd himselfe, after foure and twenty yeares Raigne, deceased at Faring∣don in Barkshire, in the yeare 924. and was buryed in the new Monastery of Win∣chester, which his Father began, and himselfe wholly finished: having had by his three Wives, six Sonnes and nine Daughters, of whom his eldest sonne Athel∣stan succeeded him in the kingdome, whom his Grandfather King Alfred had with his owne hands Knighted in an extraordinary manner; putting upon him a pur∣ple Robe, and girding him with a girdle wrought with Pearle. His second sonne Elfred, he so loved, that he caused him to be Crowned King with himselfe, which yet he enjoyed but a short time, being taken away by death. His third sonne Els∣ward, presently upon his Fathers death, dyed himselfe also. His fourth son Ed∣wyn, was by his brother Athelstan, out of jealousie of state, put into a little Pinnace, without either Tackle or Oares, accompanyed onely with one Page; with griefe whereof, the young Prince leaped into the Sea and drowned himselfe. His fifth, and sixth sonnes, Edmund, and Edred, came in succession to be Kings of England. Of his Daughters, the eldest Edytha, was marryed to Sithricke the Danish King of Northumberland, and he deceasing, she entred into a Monastery, which she began at Tamworth in Warwickshire, and there dyed. His second daughter Elflede, tooke upon her the vow of Virginity, in the Monastery of Ramsey, in the County of South∣hampton, where she dyed and was interred. His third daughter Eguina, was first marryed to Charles the Simple, King of France, and after his decease, to Herbert, Eale of Vermandois. His fourth daughter Ethelhild, became a Nunne in the Mo∣nastery of Wilton, which was sometime the head Towne, giving name to the whole County of Wilshire, and anciently called Ellandon. That we may see in those first times of Religion, when there was leat knowledge, there was most de∣votion. His fifth daughter Edhold, was marryed to Hugh, surnamed the Great, Earle of Paris, and Constable of France. And Edgith his sixth daughter, to Otho, the Emperour of the West, urnamed the Great. His seventh daughter Elgina, was marryed to a Duke of Italy. His ninth Edgina, to Lewis Prince of Aquitaine in France.

Page  13After the death of King Edward, his eldest sonne Athelstan succeeded, and was Crowned at Kingstone upon Thames, in the County of Surrey, by Athelmu Arch∣bishop of Canterbury, in the yeare 924. The beginning of whose Raigne, was mo∣lested with the Treason of one Elfrid a Nobleman, who being apprehended and sent to Rome to purge himselfe, and there denying the Act upon his Oath, fell suddenly downe, and within three dayes dyed, to the eternall errour of all per∣jured persons. Presently upon this, another dysaster befell King Athelstan, for having caused his brother Edwyns death, (as before is shewed) chiefly pro∣cured by his Cupbearers suggestions: It hapned not long after, that his Cup∣bearer, in his service at a Festivall, stumbling with one foote, and recovering him∣selfe with the other, and saying merrily, See how one brother helpes another; His words put the King in remembrance of his Brother, whose death he had caused, and with remorse thereof, not onely caused his Cup-bearer to be put to death, but did also seven yeare penance: and built the two Monasteries of Middleton, and Mi∣chelnesse, in the County of Dorset, in expiation of his offence. This King ordai∣ned many good Lawes; and those to binde as well the Clergy, as the Laity; a∣mongst which, one was the Attachment of Felons, that stole aove twelve pence, and were above twelve yeares old. Of this King, there is one Act related, that may seeme ridiculous; another that may seeme miraculous; For what more ridicu∣lous, then that, going to visit the Tombe of Saint Iohn of Beverley, and having nothing else of worth to offer, he offered his knife in devotion to the Saint? Yet the miraclous is more apparent: For going to encounter the Danes, and praying to God for good successe, he prayed withall, that God would shew some signe of his rightfull cause, and thereupon striking with his sword, he strucke it an ell deepe into a hard stone, which stood so cloven a long time after. But whether this be true or no, this certainly is true, that he obtained many great victories against the Danes, against the Scots, against the Irsh, and against the Welsh, whose Princes he brought to be his Tributaries, entring Covenant at Herefrd, to pay him yearely twenty pound weight of gold, three hundred of silver, and five and twenty hun∣dred head of Cattell, besides a certaine number of Hawkes and Hounds. Lastly, he joyned Northumberland to the rest of his Monarchy, and enlarged his Domini∣ons beyond any of his Predecessours, which made all Neighbouring Princes to seeke his friendship, and to gratify him with rare presents, as Hugh King of France sent him the sword of Constantine the Great, in the hilt whereof, was one of the nayles that fastned Christ to his Crosse; He sent him also the speare of Charles the Grea, reputed to be the same that pierced Christs side; as also part of the Crosse whereon Christ suffered, and a piece of the Thorny Crowne put upon his head. Likewise Otho the Emperour, who had marryed his sister, sent him a vessell of pre∣tious stones, artificially made, wherein were seene Landskips with Vines, Corne, and Men, all of them seeming so artificially to move, as if they were growing, and alive. Likewise the King of Norway sent him a goodly Ship, with a gilt Stene, purple ayles, and the decke garnished all with gold. Of these accounted Holy Reliques, King Athelstan gave part to the Abbey of Saint Swithin in Winchester, and the rest to the Monastery of Mamesbury, whereof Adelm was the Founder, and his Tutelar Saint. He new built the Monasteries of Wilton, Michelnesse, and Middleton; Founded Saint Germans in Cornwall, Saint Petrocus at Bodmyn, and the Priory of Pilton; new walled and beautifyed the City of Exceter, and enriched either with Jewels or Lands, every speciall Abbey of the Land. But the chiefest of his workes for the service of God, and good of his Subjects, was the Translati∣on of the Bible into the Saxon Tongue, which was then the Mother tongue of the Land. He Raigned fifteen yeares, Dyed at Glocestr, and was buryed at Mames∣bery, in the yeare 940. having never beene marryed.

After the death of Athelstan, his brother Edmund, the fifth sonne of his Father succeeded; and was Crowned at Kingstone upon Thames; but no sooner was the Crowne set upon his head, but the Danes were upon his backe; and in Northumber∣land made Insurrections, whom yet he not onely repressed in that part; but tooke Page  14 from them the Townes of Lincolne, Leycester, Darby, Stafford and Nottingham; com∣pelling them withall to receive Baptisme, and to become his Subjects, so as the Country was wholly his as farre as Humber. Cumberland also, which had beene an entire Kingdome of it selfe, and was now ayded by Leolyn King of South-wales, he utterly wasted, and gave it to Malcolme King of Scots, to hold of him by Feal∣ty. After his returning home, he et himselfe to ordaine Lawes for the good of his People; which Master Lambert hath since translaed into Latine. But after all his noble Acts both in Warre and Peace, he came at last to a lamentable end; for at his Manour of Pucklekerks, in the County of Glocester, interposing himselfe to part a fray betweene two of his servants, he was thrust through the body, and so wounded that he dyed, and was buryed at Glastenbury, after he had Raigned five yeares and seven moneths, leaving behinde him two young Sonnes, Edwyn, and Edgar.

King Edmund dying, his brother Edred, in the minority of his Nephewes, was Crowned at Kingstone upon Thames, by Otho Arch-bishop of Canterbury, in the yeare 946. Not as Protector; (It seemes that kinde of Authority was not yet come in use) but as King himselfe, though with purpose to resigne, when the right Heire should come of age, which at this time needed not, for while the right Heire was scarce yet fourteene yeares old, he resigned to him the Kingdome, by resigning his life to Nature, after he had twice repressed the rebelling Northumbrians, and twice forgiven their rebelling, which yet was not a simple Rebellion; for they had sent for Anlafe the Dane out of Ireland, and made him their King; which place for foure yeares he held; and then weary of his government, they thrust him out and take one Hericus to be their King, whom not long after they put downe also; and then partly allured by the lenity of King Edred; and partly forced by his Armes; they submit themselves to him, and aske forgivenesse; to whom he, as a mercifull Prince, giants an Act of Oblivion, and received them againe into protection. This Prince was so devout and humble, that he submitted his body to be chastised at the will of Dunstan Abbot of Glastenbury, and committed all his Treasure and Jewels to his custody. The stately Abbey of Mich at Abington neare Oxford, built by King Inas, but destroyed by the Danes, he newly re-edified; endowing it with revenues and Lands, the Charters whereof he confirmed with seales of Gold. He ordained Saint Germans in Cornwall, to be a Bishops See, which there continued, till by Ca∣nutus it was annexed to the Episcopall See of Kyrton in Devonshire; Both which Sees were afterward by King Edward the Confessor, translated to the City of Exce∣ter. He left behinde him two Sonnes, Elfred, and Bertfred, and was buryed in the old Minster, without the City of Winchester; whose bones with other Kings, are to this day preserved in a gilt Coffer, fixed upon the wall, in the South side of the Quire.

After Edred, not any of his sonnes, but his Nephew Edwyn, the eldest sonne of King Edmund succeeded, and was annoynted and Crowned at Kingston upon Thames, by Otho Arch-bishop of Canterbury, in the yeare 955. This Prince, though scarce fourteene yeares old, and in age but a childe, yet was able to commit sinne as a man; For upon the very day of his Coronation, and in sight of his Lords, as they sate in Counsell, he shamefully abused a Lady of great Estate, and his neare kinswoman, and to mend the matter, shortly after slew her Husband, the more freely to injoy his incestuous pleasure. And whether for this infamous fact, or for thrusting the Monkes out of the Monasteries of Mamesbury, and Glastenbury, and placing marryed Priests in their roomes, as also for banishing Dunstan the holy Ab∣bot of Glastenbury out of the Realme, a great part of his Subjects hearts was so tur∣ned against him, that the Mercians and Northumbrians revolted, and swore Fealty to his younger brother Edgar, with griefe whereof, after foure yeares Raigne, he ended his life, and was buryed in the Church of the New Abbey of Hyde, at Win∣chester.

After Edwyn, succeeded his younger brother Edgar, at the age of sixteene yeares; but his Coronation, when, and where, and by whom, so uncertaine, that some say Page  15 he was Crowned at Kingston upon Thames, by Otho Arch-bishop of Canterbury, in the first yeare of his Raigne, others say, not till the twelfth, and William of Mames∣bery, not till the thirtyeth: Another Chronicle saith, in his eleventh yeare; and that in the City of Bathe, by the hands of Dunstan Arch-bishop of Canterbury. This King, by reason of the tranquillity of his Raigne, was surnamed the Peaceable; for as he was something inclined to the Danes, so the Danes never offered to stirre in all his time; and as for the Saxons, they acknowledged him their sole Sove∣raigne, without division of Provinces or Titles. His Acts were, some Vertuous, some Politick, some Just, some Pious, and yet all these not without some mix∣ture of vice. To represse dunkennesse, which the Danes had brought in; he mae a Law, Ordaining a size, by certaine pinnes in the pot, with penalty to any, that should presume to drinke deeper then the marke. It was a Politicke device which he used for the destruction of Wolves, that in his dayes did great annoyance to the Land. For, the tribute imposed on the Princes of Wales, by King Athelstan, he wholly remitted, appointing in lieu thereof a certaine number of Wolves yearely to be paid; whereof the Prince of North-wales, for his part was to pay three hun∣dred; which continued for three yeares space: and in the fourth yeare, there was not a Wolfe to be found; and so the tribute ceased. He had in his Navy Royall, three thousand and sixe hundred ships, which he divided into three parts, appoin∣ting every one of them to a severall Quarter, to scowre the Seas, and to secure the Coasts from Pirats: and left his Officers might be carelesse, or corrupted; he would himselfe in person saile about all the Coasts of his Kingdome every Sum∣mer. It was a notable Act of Justice, that in his Circuits, and Progresses through the Country, he would take speciall account of the demeanour of his Lords; and specially for his Judges; whom he severely punished, if he fonnd them Delinquents. Warres he had none in all his Raigne, onely towards his end, the Welshmen moved some rebellion; against whom he went with a mighty Army, and chastised the Authours; but when his Souldiers had gotten great spoyles, and made prey upon the innocent Countrey people; he commanded them to restore it all backe againe; which, if it made some few English angry, it made the whole Country of the Welsh well pleased, and sound forth his praises. His Pious Acts were, that he built and prepared seven and forty Monasteries, and meant to have made them up fifty, but was prevented by death. But now his mixture of Vice marred all; e∣specially being a Vice opposite to all those Vertues, which was Lasciviousnesse. For first, he deflowred a sacred Nunne, called Wolfchild; on whom yet he begot a Saint, the chast Edyth. After her, another Virgin, called Ethelflede, for her excel∣lent beauty surnamed the White, on whom he begot his eldest Sonne Edward; for which Fact he did seven yeares penance, enjoyned him by the Arch-bishop Dun∣stan. After this he chanced to heare of a Virgin, Daughter to a Westerne Duke, exceedingly praysed for her beauty, and comming to Andover, commanded her to his Bed. But the Mother, tender of her Daughters honour, brought in the darke her mayd to him; who in the morning, making hast to rise, and the King not suf∣fering her to depart, she told him what great worke she had to doe; and how she should incurre her Ladies displeasure, if it were not done; by which words, the King perceiving the deceit, turned it to a jest, but so well liked her company, that he kept himselfe true to her ever after, till he marryed. But now his marriage it selfe happened by a greater vice then any of these; For hearing of the admirable beauty of Elrida, the onely daughter of Ordganus Duke of Devonshire, Founder of Tavestocke Abbey in that Country, he sent his great Favorite Earle Ethelwold, (who could well judge of beauty) to try the truth thereof; with Commission, that if he found her such as Fame reported, he should seise her for him, and he would make her his Queene. The young Earle, upon sight of the lady, was so surprized with her love, that he began to wooe her for himselfe, and got her Fa∣thers good will, so as the King would give his consent. Hereupon the Earle post∣ed to the King, relating to him, that the Mayd was faire indeed, but nothing an∣swerable to the Fame that went of her: yet desired the King that he might marry Page  16 her, as being her Fathers heire, thereby to raise his Fortunes. The King consen∣ted, and the marriage was solemnized. Soone after, the fame of her beauty be∣gan to spread more then before, so as the King much doubting that he had beene abused, meant to try the truth himselfe, and thereupon taking occasion of hunting in the Dukes Parke, came to his house: whose comming Ethelwold suspecting, ac∣quainted his wife with the wrong he had done both her, and the King, and there∣fore to prevent the Kings displeasure, intreated her by all the perswasions he could use, to cloathe her selfe in such attire, as might be least fit to set her forth; but she considering that now was the time, to make the most of her beauty, and longing to be a Queene; would not be accessary to her owne wrong, but decked her selfe in her richest Ornaments; which so improved her beauty, that the King at her first sight was strucke with admiration, and meant to be revenged of his persidious Favourite; yet dissembling his passion, till he could take him at advantage, he then with a Javelin ran him through; and having thereby made the faire Elfrid a Wi∣dow, tooke her to be his Wife. This King founded the Monastery of Ramsey in Hamshire, Raigned sixteene yeares, Lived seven and thirty, and with great Fu∣nrall pompe was buryed in the Abbey of Glastenbury. He had children by his first wife Ethelfleda, one sonne named Edward; and by his second wife Elfrid, two sons, one named Edmund, who dyed young, the other Ethelred. He had also one na∣turall Daughter, named Edgyth, by a Lady named Wolfchild, the daughter of Wol∣holme, the sonne of Birding, the sonne of Nesting; which two latter beare in their names, the memory of their Fortunes; the last of them being found in an Eagles nest, by King Alfred as he was a hunting. This Edgyth built the Monastery and Church of Saint Dennis at Wilton, and was there buryed.

After the death of King Edgar, succeeded his sonne Edward, but not without some opposition, for Queene Elfrid combined with divers of the Lords, to make her Sonne Ethelred King, saying that Prince Edward was illegitimate; on the other side, the Arch-bishop Dunstan, and the Monkes stood for Edward, abetting his Ti∣tle as being lawfully borne; but while the Counsell was assembled to argue their Rights, the Arch-bishop came in with his Banner and Crosse, and not staying for debating De Iure, De Facto presented Prince Edward for their lawfull King, and the Assembly consisting most of Clergy men, drew the approbation of the rest; and thereupon Prince Edward was admitted, being but twelve yeares of age, and was Crowned King at Kingstone upon Thames, by Arch-bishop Dunstan, in the yeare 975. In the beginning of his Raigne, it fell into debate whether marryed Priests were to be allowed to live in Monasteries upon the revenues of the Church. The Mercian Duke Alferus, favouring the cause of the marryed Priests, destroy∣ed the Monasteries in his Province, cast out the Monkes, and restored againe the ancient revenues to the Priests and their wives. On the other side, Edelwyn Duke of the East Angles, and Brithnoth Earle of Essex, who stood for the Monkes, cast marryed Priests out of their Provinces. The matter being debated in a Councell at Westminster, the Monkes cause was like to have the foyle, till it was referred to the Rood, placed on the Refectory wall, where the Counsell sate. For to this gréat Oracle, Saint Dunstan desired them devoutly to pray, and to give diligent eare for an Answer; when suddenly a voyce was heard to say, God forbid it should be so, God forbid it should be so. This was thought authority sufficient, to suppresse the Priests, till they perswading the people, that this was but a cunning practise of the Monkes, in placing behind the wall, a man of their owne, who through a Trunke uttered these words in the mouth of the Rood, whereupon another Assem∣bly was appointed at Cleve in Wiltshire, whither repaired the Prelates, with most of all the Lords and Gentlemen of the Kingdome. The Synod being set, and the matter at the heighth of discussing, it happened that the Joysts of the roome, where the Synod was held, suddenly brake, and the floore with all the people thereon, fell downe, whereof many were hurt, and some slaine. Onely the Arch-bishop Dunstan then President, and mouth for the Monkes, remained unhurt; which whether it were done by practise, or were miraculous, it served the Monkes turne Page  17 for justifying their cause; and marryed Priests were thereupon discarded. It were infinite and indeed ridiculous, to speake of all the Miracles reported to be done by this Saint Dunstan, which may be fit for a Legend, but not for a Chronicle.

But now a most lamentable dysaster, comes to be remembred: For King Edward, hunting one time in the Island of Purbacke: not farre from Corfe Castle; where his mother in Law Queene Elfrid, with his brother Prince Ethelred, were then resi∣ding, he out of his love to both, would needs himselfe alone goe visit them; where the cruell woman, out of ambition to bring her owne Sonne to the Crowne, cau∣sed one to runne him into the backe with a knife, as he was drinking a cup of Wine on horse backe at his departing, who feeling himselfe hurt, set spurres to his horse, thinking thereby to get to his company, but the wound being mortall, and he fain∣ting thorow losse of much blood, fell from his Horse; but one foote being intangled in the stirrup, he was thereby rufully dragged up and downe, through Woods, and Lands: And lastly left dead at Corfes gate; for which untimely death, he was ever after called by he name of Edward the Martyr. He Raigned onely three yeares and ix moneths, and was Buryed first at Winchester, without all Funerall pompe; but after three yeares, by Duke Alferus removed, and with great solemnity interred in the Minster of Shaftsbury. Queene Elfrid, to expiate this her bloody fact, built the two Monasteries of Almesbery, and Worwell, in the Counties of Wilshire, and Southampton, in which latter, with great repentance, she lived till her death.

After the death of Edward the Martyr, dying at the age of sixteene yeares, his halfe brother Ethelred, at the age of twelve yeares, in the yeare 979. was Crow∣ned King at Kingston upon Thames, by Dunstan Arch-bishop of Canterbury, though much against his will; which King, by reason of his backwardnesse in Action, was commonly called the Unready. Before whose time, for two and twenty yeares past; the Danes had lived as quiet Inmates with the English, but whether weary of so long doing nothing, or finding now opportunity of doing something, in the second yeare of this King, they begin to stirre, and inviting from home more for∣ces, who in seven Ships arrived upon the Coast of Kent, they spoyled all the Coun∣try, specially the Isle of Thanet, and continued this course of forraging the King∣dome, sometimes in one part, and sometimes in another, for eleven yeares toge∣ther: till at last in the yeare 991. the King, by advice of his Lords, of whom Siri∣cius, the now Arch-bishop of Canterbury was chiefe, was contented to pay them ten thousand pounds, upon condition they should quietly depart the Realme. This served the turne for the present, but was so farre from satisfying them, that it did but give them the greater appetite: for the yeare following they came againe, and that with a greater Fleet then before, against whom the King prepared a compe∣tent Navy, and committed it to Elfricke, Earle of Mercia, but he proving treache∣rous (as indeed all other for the most part did, whom the King imployed against the Danes, as with whom they were allyanced in blood) the Dans so prevailed that for the next Composition, they had sixteene thousand pounds given them, and a yeare after, twenty thousand; and so every yeare more and more, till it came at last to forty thousand: by which meanes, the Land was emptyed of all Coyne, and the English were brought so low, that they were faine to Till, and Eare the Ground, whilest the Danes sate idle, and ate the fruite of their labours; abusing the Wives and Daughters of their Hosts where they lay, and yet i every place, for every feare, were called Lord-Danes; (which afterward became a word of derision, when one would signifie a lazy Lubber.) In this distressed state, the King at last bethought himselfe of a course: He sent forth a secret Commission, into every City within his Dominions, that at an appointed time, they should massacre all the Danes that were amongst them; The day was the thirteenth of November, being the Festivall of Saint Bricius, in the yeare 1002. His command was accordingly performed, and with such rigour, that in Oxford the Danes for refuge tooke into the Church of Saint Frideswyde, as into a Sanctuary, when the English, neither regarding Place nor Person, set the Church on site, wherein ma∣ny of the Danes were burnt, and the Library thereof utterly defaced. And who Page  18 would not now thinke, but that England by this Fact had cleane shaken off the Danish yoke for ever? yet it proved cleane otherwise: For the newes of this mas∣sacre, adding a new edge of revenge, to the old edge of ambition: made the Danes sharper set against the English, then ever they had beene before; so as the yeare following, their King Sweyne, with a mighty Navy, entred the Country, razed, and levelled with the ground the City of Exceter, all along from the East Gate to the West; against whom the King levyed an Army, and made Generall over it, the Earle Edricke, his great Favourite; whom he had created Duke of Mercia; and given him his Daughter Edgyth in marriage; yet all this great favour could not keepe him from being treacherous, for being sent Embassadour to the Danes, to mediate for Peace, he revealed to them the weaknesse of the Land, and trea∣cherously disswaded them from consenting to any Truce. Upon this King Ethel∣red gave order, that every three hundred and ten Hydes of Land should build a Ship, and every eight Hydes, finde a compleat Armour furnished, yet all this great preparation came to nothing, but onely to make a shew. After this, the King seeing no end of their invasions, nor promise kept upon any composition; (for three Danish Princes, with a great Fleet, were now newly arrived) He intended to adventure once for all, and to commit his cause to God, by the fortune of a Battaile. To which end he secretly gathered a mightily Power, and comming un∣looked for, when the Enemy was unprepared, he had certainely given an end to the Quarrell, if the wicked Edricke had not disswaded him from fighting, and put him into a causelesse feare, by forged tales. After this, the Danes forraged many Countryes; burnt Oxford, Theford, and Cambridge: and lastly entred Wiltshire, which was the seventh shire in number, they had laid waste like a Wildernesse. The yeare after, they make a new Expedition, and besiege Canterbury; which by treason of a Church-man they wonne, tooke Alphegus the Arch-bishop, and flew nine hundred Monkes, and men of Religion, besides many Citizens, without all mercy; for they Tythed the people, slaying all by nines, and reserving onely the tenth to live; so that of all the Monkes in the Towne, there were but foure saved, and of the Lay people, foure thousand eight hundred, by which account Master Lambert collecteth, that there dyed in this Massacre, three and forty thousand, and two hundred persons. The Arch-bishop Alphegus, for that he refused to charge his Tenants with three thousand pounds to pay for his ransome, they most cruelly stoned to death at Greenwich. Turkillus the leader of these murtherers, tooke into his possession all Norfolke and Suffolke, over whom he tyrannized in most savage manner; the rest compounding with the English for eight thousand pounds, quiet∣ly for a while sojourned among them. The yeare following came King Sweyne a∣gaine, and with a great Navy arrived in the mouth of Humber, and landed at Gains∣borough, to whom the Northumbrians, and the people of Lindsey, yeelded them∣selves; So that now over all the North from Watlingstreete, he Raigned sole King, and exacted pledges of them for their further obedience. From the North he pas∣sed into the South, subduing all before him, till he came to London, where he was so valiantly encountred by the Londoners, that he was glad to retire, in which re∣tyring notwithstanding he entred Bathe; where Ethelmore Earle of Devonshire, with his Westerne people, submitted himselfe to him. Yet after this, betweene him and the English was strucke a fierce battaile, which had beene with good successe, if the treachery of some in turning to the Danes, had not hindered it. After this the Danes proceeded on victoriously, and had gotten most part of the Land, and even London also by submission: whereupon the unfortunate King Ethelred sending his Wife Emma, with her two sonnes, Edward and Alfred, to her Brother, Duke of Normandy, himselfe also the Winter following passed thither, leaving the Danes Lording it in his Realme. Sweyne now as an absolute King, extorted from the En∣glish both Victuals, and Pay for his Souldiers; and demanding such a Composi∣tion for preserving of Saint Edmunds Monastery in Suffolke, as the Inhabitants were not able, and therefore refused to pay; he thereupon threatned spoyle, both to the Place, and to the Martyrs bones there interred, when suddenly, in the middest of Page  19 his jollity (saith Hoveden) he cryed out, that he was strucke by Saint Edmund with a sword, being then in the midst of his Lords: and no man seeing from whose hand it came, and so with great horrour and torment, three dayes afer; upon the third of February, he ended his life at Thetford, or (as others say) at Gaynsborough. And now who would not thinke, but this was a faire opportunity offered to the English, to free themselves wholly from the Danish yoke? but when all was don, either crossed by treachery, or frustrated by misfortune, nothing prospered. I is true, upon this occasion of Sweynes death, King Ethelred returned out of Nor∣mandy, but at his comming, Canutus the sonne o Sweyne, had gotten the peopl of Lindsey to be at his devotion, and to find him both Horse and Men against their owne King; so as Ethelred was now to encounter as well his owne Subjects as the Danes, which he did so valiantly, that he made Canutus glad to returne into Den∣marke, as utterly hopelesse of any good to be done in England. And now one would certainely thinke the Danes had beene removed, Roote and Branch, out of England, and never like to trouble the Land any more; and indeed there was all the appearance of probability for it that could be. But it is a true saying, That which will be, shall be, let all be done that can be. For now Turkill the Dane, who had before revolted to King Ethelred, growing sensible of his fault, which was this, or no way to be redeemed; and tender of his Countrymens case, which was now or never to be helpt; with nine of his Ships sailed into Denmarke, and first excusing himselfe to Canutus for his former defection, as though he had done it of purpose, to learne all advantages against the English, which now he could disco∣ver to him, he so prevailed with Canutus once againe to try his fortune, that with a Navy of two hundred Ships he set saile for England, and landed at Sandwich, where he gave the English a great overthrow, and passed victoriously through the Counties of Dorset, Somerset, and Wilts. When (Ethelred lying dangerously sicke at Cossam) the managing of the Warre was committed to Prince Edmund his sonne, who preparing to give the Danes battaile, had suddenly notice given him, that his Brother in Law Edricke, meant to betray him into his Enemies hands, which made him suspend his proceeding; and Edricke perceiving his designe to be discovered, cast off the masque, and with forty of the Kings ships fled openly to the Enemy; and thereupon, all the West Countries submitted themselves unto Canutus. By this time King Ethelred having recovered his sicknesse, prepared to goe on with the Battaile, which his sonne Edmund had intended, but his Forces being assembled, he likewise had suddenly notice given him, that his Subjects meant to betray him to the Danes. Hereupon he withdrew himselfe to London, as the place in which he most confided; where falling into a relapse of his former sicknes, he ended his unfortunate dayes, in the yeare 1016. when he had Raigned 37. yeares; and was buried in the Cathedrall Church of Saint Paul, whose bones as yet remaine in the North wall of the Chancell, in a chest of gray Marble; adjoyning to that of Sebba King of the East Saxons. He had by his two Wives, eight Sonnes, and foure Daughters; of whom, his youngest named Goda, was marryed to one Walter de Maigne, a Nobleman of Normandy; by whom she had a sonne named Rodolph, which Rodolph had a sonne named Harold, created afterward by King William the Conquerour, Baron of Sudeley, in the County of Glocester, and Ancestor to the Ba∣rons of that place succeeding, and of the Lord Chandowes of Sudeley now being.

Ethelred being dead, his third sonne Edmund called Ironside (of his ability in en∣during labour) but the eldest living at his fathers death, succeeded, and was Crow∣ned at Kingston upon Thames, by Levingus Archbishop of Canterbury, in the yeare 1016. A great part of the English both feared and favoured, and indeed out of feare favoured Canutus; especially the Clergy, who at Southampton ordained him their King, and sware Feaalty to him: but the Londoners stood firme to Prince Ed∣mund, and were the principall authors of his Election. Canutus before the death of King Ethelred, had besieged the City, and now with a large Trench encompassed it: but the new King Edmund comming on, raised the siege, and made Canutus flie to the Isle of Sheppey, where having stayed the winter, the Spring following, he assayled Page  20 the West of England, and at Penham in Dorseshire, a battaile was fought, and the Danes discomfitted. After this, in Worcstershire at a place called Sherostan, another battaile was fought, where the Danes were like againe to be discomfited, but the trai∣terous Edrick perceiving it, he cut off the head of a souldier like unto King Edmnd both in haire and countenance, and shaking his bloody sword, with the gasping head, cried to the Army of the English, Fly ye wretches flie, & get away, for your King is slain; behold, here is his head: but King Edmund having notice of this treacherous strata∣gem, hasted to shew himself where he might best be seen: whose sight so encouraged his men, that they had gotten that day a finall Victory, if night had not prevented them. Duke Edrick excused his fact, as being mistaken in the countenance of the man, and desirous to save the blood of the English; upon which false colour hee was received into favour againe. After this, Canutus secretly in the night brake up his Campe, and marched towards London, which in a sort was still besieged by the Danish ships: but King Edmund hearing of his departure, followed him, and with small adoe removed the siege, and in Triumphant manner entred the City. After this, neere unto Otford in Kent, was another great battaile fought, in which Canutus lost foure thousand five hundred men, and King Edmund onely six hundred; the rest of the Danes saving themselves by light; whom if King Edmund had purued, it is thought that day had ended the warres betweene these two Nations for ever. But the ever traiterous Edrick, kept King Edmund from pursuing them, by telling him of Ambushes and other dangers: So as Canutu had leisure to passe over into Essex, but thither also King Edmund followed him; where at Ashdone three miles from Saffron Walden, another battaile was fought, in which he Danes being at the point to be overthrowne, the traiterous Edrick with all his Forces revoulted to their side, by which treachery the English lost the day. There died of King Edmunds Nobility, Duke Alfred, Duke Goodwyn, Duke Athelward, Duke Athelwyn, Earle Urchill, Codnoth Bishop of Lincolne, Woolsey Abbot of Ramsey, with many other. The remembrance of which battaile is retained to this day, by certaine small hils there remaining, whence have beene digged the bones of men, Armour, and horsebridles. After this; at Dereherst neere to the river Severn, another battaile was ready to be fought; when suddenly a certaine Captaine steps forth, and for saving of blood ued great per∣swasions, that either they should try the matter by single Combat, or else divide the Kingdome betwixt them. Upon this the Combat is agreed on, and the two Princes entering into a small Island called Alney, adjoyning to the City of Glocester, in com∣pleat Armour assayled each other, at first on horsebacke, and after on foote: when Canutus having received a dangerous wound, and finding himselfe overmatched in strength, desired a Compromise, and with a loud voyce used these words. What necessity should move us most Valiant Prince, for obtaining of a Title to endanger our lives? were it not better to lay malice aside, and condescend to a loving agree∣ment? let us therefore become sworne brothers, and divide the Kingdome between us. This motion was by King Edmund accepted, and thus was the Kingdome divi∣ded betweene these two Princes; Edmund enjoying that part which lies upon the coast of France, and Canutus the rest. But now Duke Edrick hath his last and grea∣test Act of treachery to play: for King Edmund being retired to a place for natures ncessity, he thurst from under the draught a sharpe speare into his body, and then cutting off his head, presented it to Canutus, with these fawning words, All hayle, thou sole Monarch now of England, for here behold the head of thy Copartner, which for thy sake I have adventured to cut off. Canutus though ambitious enough of soveraign∣ty, yet abahed at so disloyall a fact, replyed and vowed, that in reward of that ser∣vice his own head should bee advanced above all the Peeres of his Kingdom, which soone after he performed; for by his command the false Edricks head was cut off, and placed upon the highest gate in London. The death of this King in this man∣ner, some say was acted at Oxford; other, that he died of naturall sicknesse in Lon∣don, but howsoever he came to his death, his Raigne was but onely seven months, & his body was buried at Glastenury, neere to his Grandfather King Edgar. This King Edmund had by his wife Algyt, two sonnes; the eldest named Edward, surnamed Page  21 the Outlaw, because he lived out of England in Hungary as a banished man, for feare of King Canutus: but when his Uncle King Edward the Confessor, had obtained the Crowne, he was recalled, and honourably entertained till he died. He married Aga∣tha, sister to Queene Sophia, wife to Salomon King of Hungarie, and daughter to the Emperour Henry the second; by whom he had Edgar surnamed Atheling, the right Heire of the English Crowne, though he never enjoyed it. King Edmund had also two daughters, Margaret and Christian, of whom the younger became a Veyled Nunne at Ramsey in Hampshire; the elder Margaret, after sole Heire to the Saxon Mo∣narchie, married Malcolme the third King of Scotland, from which Princely bed in a lineall Descent, our High and Mighty Monarch King Iames the first, doth in his most Royall person, unite the Britaines, Saxons, Normans, and Scottish Imperiall Crownes in one.

Of the first Danish King in England.

CAnutus being possest of halfe the Kingdome by composition with King Ed∣mund, now after his death seised upon the whole, and to prevent all further question, he called a Councell of the English Nobility, wherein it was pro∣pounded, whether in the agreement betwixt Edmnd and him, any claime of Title to the Crowne had beene reserved for King Edmunds brethren or sonnes: to which (not daring to say otherwise) they absolutely answered no, and thereupon tooke all of them the Oath of Allegeance to Canutus. Being thus cleered of all Opposites he prepared with great solemnity for his Coronation, which was performed at Lon∣don, by the hands of Levingus surnamed Elstane, Archbishop of Canterbury, in the yeare 1017. being the first Dane that Raigned Monarch of England. But Canutus not thinking himselfe sufficiently safe, as long as any that might pretend, were in the peoples eye, caused first Edwyn the sonne of King Ethelred, and brother of Ed∣mund, to abjure the Realme, who was yet afterward recalled, and treacherously murthered by his owne men, and his body buried at Tavestock in Devonshire. Next were the two sonnes of Edmund Ironside, Edward and Edmund, whom to the end the people might not see him shed the blood of Innocents, he sent to his halfe brother King of Sweden to be made away. Then remained Edward and Alfred, the sonnes of King Ethelred, and them their mother Queene Emma had sent away before to her brother the Duke of Normandie, there to be in safety: so as none of the Royall blood was now left in the land, to give Canutus any feare of competition. After this, he tooke to wife the vertuous Lady Emma, the Relict of King Ethelred, by which match he procured to himselfe three great benefits: one that hee wonne the love of the people by marrying a Lady whom they so entirely loved; another, that he got the Alliance of the Duke of Normandi, a neighbouing Prince of great power; the third, that by marrying the mother, hee secured himselfe against the sons: as likewise Queene Emma was not unwillingly perswaded to the match, upon agreement to make her issue, if he had any by her, to inherit the Crowne of England. And to winne the love of the people more, hee caused great numbers of his Danes, who pestered the Country, to return home, bestowing amongst them for their satis∣faction foure score and two thousand pounds. And to winne the love of the peo∣ple yet more, he now set himselfe to the making of good lawes in a Parliament at Oxford, whereof, for a Patterne of those times, some that concerne Religion, may not unfitly be here related. First, for the celebration of divine Service, it was or∣dained, that all Ceremonies tending to the encrease of reverence & devotion should bee used as need required. Secondly, that upon the Sabbath day, all publike Faires, Markets, Synods, Huntings, and all secular actions should be forborne, unlesse some urgent necessity should require it. Thirdly, that every Christian should thrice in the yeare receive the blessed Sacrament of the Lords Supper. Fourthly, that if a Mi∣nister of the Altar killed a man, or committed any notorious crime, he should bee deprived both of his Order and Dignity. Fifthly, tht a married woman convict Page  22 of adultery, should have her nose and eares cut off. Sixthly, That a widow marrying within a twelvemonth after her husbands decease, should lose her Joynture. These and many other good lawes were made, whereby the kingdome remained during all his time, in a most peaceable state and government. In the third yeare of his Raign, he heard how the Vandales taking advantage of his absence, had entred Denmarke, and annoyed his subjects; whereupon with a great Army of English hee passed over the Seas, and gave them battaile, but with ill successe the first day; when preparing for the next dayes battaile, the Earle Goodwyn who was Generall of the English, se∣cretly in the dead of the night, set upon the Vandals Campe, & with a great slaugh∣ter of their souldiers, made their two Princes Ulfus and Anlave, to flie the field. In the morning it was told Canutus, that the English were fled, for that their station was left, and not a man of them to be found, which did not a little trouble his pa∣tience: but he going in person to see the truth, found the great overthrow the Eng∣lish had given, for which service ever after, hee held the English, and especially the Earle Goodwyn in great estimation. After this, returning home hee made a prospe∣rous Expedition against Malcolme King of Scots; and at last, in the fifteenth yeare of his Raigne, wearied with the honourable troubles of the world, and out of devo∣tion, he tooke a Journey to Rome, to visit the Sepulchre of St. Peter and Paul, from whence he writ to the Bishops and Nobility of England, that they should carefully administer Justice, and never seeke to advance his profit by any undue wayes, or with the detriment of any man. At his returne frō Rome, he built in Essex the Church of Ashdone, where he got the victory against King Edmund; in Norfolke, the Abbey of St. Benets, which Saint he greatly reverenced; and in Suffolke the Monastery of St. Edmund, which Saint he deadly feared. To the Church of Winchester hee gave many rich Jewels, whereof one was a Crosse, valued to be worth as much as the whole Revenue of England amounted to in one yeare. To Coventry he gave the arme of the great St. Austin, which he bought at Pavia in his returne from Rome, for which he payd an hundred Talents of silver and one of gold. One strange Act is recorded, which he did for convincing his fawning flatterers, who used to tell him that his power were more then humane. For being one time at Southampton, he com∣manded that his chaire of State should be set on the shoare when the Sea began to flow, and then sitting downe there in the presence of his many attendants, he spake thus to that Element: I charge thee that thou presume not to enter my Land, nor wet these Robes of thy Lord that are about me. But the Sea giving no heede to his command, but keeping on his usuall course of Tyde, first wet his skirts, and after his thighes, whereupon suddenly rising, he thus spake in the hearing of them all. Let all the worlds Inhabitants know, that vaine and weake is the power of their Kings; and that none is worthy of the name of King, but he that keepes both heaven and earth and sea in obedience. After which time he would never uffer the Crowne to be set upon his head, but presently Crowned therewith the Picture of Christ on the Crosse at Winchester: from which example arose perhaps the custome, to hang up the Armour of Worthy men in Churches, as Offerings consecrated to him who is the Lord of battaile. When he had Raigned nineteene yeares, he deceased at Shaf∣tebery in the County of Dorset, the twelfth of November, in the yeare 1035. and was buried in the Church of the old Monastery at Winchester, which being after new built, his bones with many other English Saxon Kings, were taken up, and are preserved in gilt Coffrs, fixed upon the wals of the Quire in that Cathedrall Church. He had by his two wives, three sonnes, Sweyne, and Harold by his first wife Alfgive; and Hardicnute by his second wife Queene Emma, and two daughters, of whom the eldest, called Guinhilda, was married to the Romane Emperour Henry the third, who being accused of adultery, and none found to defend her cause, at last an English Page adventured to maintaine her Innocency against a mighty Gy∣antlike-Combatant; who in fight, at one blow cutting the sinewes of his adversa∣ries legge, with another he felled him to the ground, and then with his sword taking his head from his shoulders, redeemed both the Empresses life and honour. But the Empresse after this hard usage forsooke her husbands bed, and tooke upon her the Page  23 Veyle of a Nun, in the Towne of Burges in Flanders, where she devoutly spent the rst of her life.

Of the second Danish King in England.

KIng Canutus dying left his Kingdome of Norway, to his eldest Son Sweyn, and his Kingdome of England, to his youngest Sonne Hardiknte, whom he had by his wife Emma, but he being at the time of his Fathers death in Denmarke, Harold his elder Brother, by a former wife, taking advan∣tage of his absence, layes claime to the Crowne. For determining of which Right, the Lords assembled at Oxford, where Queene Emma pleaded for her sonne Har∣diknute, urging the Covenant of Cantus at their marriage, and his last Will at his death; as also Earle Goodwyn of Kent did the like, being left Guardian of her Chil∣dren, and keeper of his last Will. But Harolds presence, together with the favour of the Londoners, Danes, and Northumbrians, so wrought with the Lords, that the absent Hardiknute was neglected, and Harold was Proclaimed and Crowned King at Oxford, by lnothus Arch-bishop of Canterbury, in the yeare 1036.

Harold having now attained the Crowne, was not so jealous of his Brother Har∣diknute, as of his mother in Law Queene Emma, and her Sonnes by King Ethelre who were beyond Sea, and therefore how to secure himselfe against these, was his first care. For effecting whereof, he framed a Letter, as written by Queene Em∣ma, to her two Sonnes Edward and Alfred; instigating them to attempt the Crown usurped by Harold, against their Right: to which letter, comming first to the hands of Alfred, he suspecting no fraud, returned Answer, that he would shortly come over, and follow her Counsaile. And thereupon with a small Fleet, and some few souldiers, lent him by Baldwyn Earle of Flaunders, he tooke the Sea for England, where comming to shoare, Earle Goodwyn met him, and bound himselfe by Oath to be his guide to his Mother Queene Emma, but being wrought firme for Harold, he led him and his company a contrary way, and lodged them at Guilford, making knowne to King Harold what he had done, who presently committed them all to slaughter, sparing onely every tenth man, for service or sale. Prince Alfred him∣selfe he sent Prisoner to the Isle of Ely, where having his eyes inhumanely put out, in griefe and torment he ended his life. Some adde a more horrible kind of cruelty, as that his belly was opened, and one end of his bowels drawne out, and fastned to a stake, his body pricked with Needles, or Poignards, and forced about, till all his Entrailes were extracted. This done, he then set upon Queene Emma, con∣fiscated her Goods, and banished her the Realme. And now further to secure him∣selfe, he kept the Seas with sixteene Danish Ships, to the maintenance whereof, he charged the English with great payments; by which, if he procured the safety of his Person, he certainly procured the hatred of his Subjects. This King for his swiftnesse in running was called Harefoot; but though by his swiftnesse he out∣runne his Brother for the Kingdome, yet could he not runne so fast, but that death quickely overtooke him; For having Raigned onely foure yeares and some moneths, he dyed at Oxford and was buryed at Westminster; having never had Wife or Children.

Of the third and last Danish King in England.

KIng Harold being dead, the Lords to make amends for their former neg∣lect, send now for Hardiknute, and offer him their Allegeance, who ac∣cepteth their offer, and thereupon taking Sea, arrived upon the Coast of Kent, the sixth day after he had set saile out of Denmarke; and with great pompe conveyed to London, was there Crowned King by Elnothus Arch-bishop of Canterbury, in the yeare 1040. His first Act, was to be revenged of his deceased Page  24 brother Harold, whose body he caused to be digged up, and throwne into the Thames, where it remained till a Fisherman found it, and buryed it in the Church yard of Saint Clement without Temple Barre, commonly called Saint Clement Danes, because it was the burying place of the Danes, as some write. But towards his Mo∣ther, and halfe Brother Prince Edwrd, he shewed true naturall affection, inviting them both to returne into England; where he received them with all the honour, that from a Sonne or Brother could be expected.

But now, as the King Harold, for his swiftnesse in running was surnamed Hare∣fooe; So this King for his intemperance in dyet, might have been surnamed Swines-mouth, or Boccdi Porco; for his Tables were spread every day foure times, and furnished with all kindes of curious dishes, as delighting in nothing but Gor∣mandizing and Swilling; and as for managing the State, he committed it wholly to his Mother Qeene Emma, and to the politicke Earle of Kent, Godwyn; who finding this weaknesse in the King, began to thinke himselfe of aspiring and to make the better way for it, he sought by all meanes to alien the Subjects hearts from the Prince, amongst other courses, he caused him to lay heavy Taxes upon them; onely for Ship-money to pay his Danes, amounting to two and thirty thousand pounds: which was so offensive to the people, that the Citizens of Worcester slew two of his Officers, Thursta and Fedax, that came to Collect it. But this King had soone the reward of his Intemperance; For in a Solemne Assembly and Ban∣quet at Lambeth, Revelling and Carowsing, he suddenly fell downe without speech, or breath, after he had Raigned only two yeares, and was buryed at Winchester. His death was so welcome to his Subjects, that the day of his death, is to this day com∣monly celebrated with open pastimes in the street, and is called Hocks-tide, signifying scorning or contempt, which fell upon the Danes by his death. For with him end∣ed the Raigne of the Danes in England; after they had miserably afflicted the king∣dome, for the space of two hundred and forty yeares, though in Regall Govern∣ment, but onely six and twenty.

Of English Kings againe, and first of Edward the Confessour.

KIng Hardiknute dying without issue, as having never beene marryed, and the Danish line cleane extinguished, Edward, for his Piety called the Confes∣sour, halfe Brother to the deceased Hardiknute, and sonne to King Ethelred by his Wife Queene Emma, was by a generall consent admitted King of England, and was Crowned at Winchester by Edsyne Arch-bishop of Canterbury, on Easter day, in the yeare 1042. being then of the age of forty yeares. He was borne at Islip, neare to Oxford, and after his Fathers death, for safety sent into France, to the Duke of Normandy his Mothers Brother, from whence he now came, to take upon him the Crowne of England. His Acts for gaining the Peoples love, were first, the remitting the yearely tribute of forty thousand pounds, gathered by the name of Danegilt, which had beene imposed by his Father, and for forty yeares together paid out of all mens Lands, but onely the Clergy; and then, from the di∣vers Lawes of the Mercians, West Saxons, Danes, and Northumbrians, he selected the best, and made of them one Body certaine, and written in Latine, being in a sort the Fountaine of those which at this day we tearme the Common Lawes, though the formes of pleading, and processe therein, were afterward brought in by the Con∣querour. The Raigne of this King was very peaceable: Onely in his sixth yeare, the Danish Pirates entred the Port of Sandwich; which with all the Sea-coast of Essex they spoyled, and then in Flanders made merchandise of their prey. As like∣wise the Irish, with thirty ships entred Severne, and with the assistance of Griffyth King of Southwales, burnt or lew all in their way, till at last, Reese the brother of Griffyth was slaine at Blenden, and his head presented to King Edward at Glocester. His Domesticall troubles were onely by Earle Gdwyn and his sonnes; who yet af∣ter many contestations and affronts, were reconciled, and Godwyn received againe Page  25 into as great favour as before. But though King Edward forgave his Treasons, yet the Divine Providence did not; for soone after, as he sate at Table with the King, on Easter Munday, he was suddenly strucken with death, and on the Thursday fol∣lowing dyed, and was buryed at Winchester. Some make his death more exem∣plar; as that justifying himselfe for Prince Alfreds death, he should pray to God, that if he were any way guilty of it, he might never swallow downe one morsell of bread, and thereupon by the just Judgement of God, was choaked by the first morsell he offered to eate.

In this Kings time, such abundance of snow fell in Ianuary, continuing till the middle of March following, that almost all Cattell and Fowle perished, and there∣withall an excessive dearth followed.

Two Acts are related of this King, that seeme nothing correspondent to the ge∣nerall opinion had of his Vertue, one concerning his Mother, the other touching his Wife. That concerning his Mother Queen Emma was this, that because after King Ethelreds death, she marryed the Danish King Canutus, and seemed to favour her issue by him, more then her issue by King Ethelred, therefore he dispossest her of all her Goods; and committed her to custody, in the Abbey of Worwell; and more then this, so farre hearkned to an aspersion cast upon her, of unchaste familiarity with Alwyne Bishop of Winchester, that for her Purgation, she was faine to passe the tryall of Fire Ordeall, which was in this manner; nine Plow-shares red hot wee laid in unequall distance, which she must passe bare-foote and blindfold; and if she passed them unhurt, then she was judged Innocent, if otherwise, Guilty. And this tryall she passed, and came off fairely, to the great astonishment of all behol∣ders. The other touching his Wife was this; He had marryed Editha the beau∣tifull, and indeed vertuous daughter of the Earle Godwyn, and because he had ta∣ken displeasure against the Father, he would shew no kindnesse to the daughter; he had made her his wife, but conversed not with her as his wife, onely at board, bu not at Bed, or if at bed, no otherwise then David with Abishagh, and yet was con∣tent to heare her accused of Incontinency, whereof if she were guilty, he could not be innocent. So as, what the vertues were, for which after his death, he should be reputed a Saint, doth not easily appeare. It seemes he was chaste, but not without injury to his wife; Pious, but not without ungratefulnesse to his Mother; Just in his present Government, but not without neglect of Posterity; for through his want of providence in that point, he left the Crowne to so doubtfull succession, that soone after his decease it was translated out of English into French, and the Kingdome made servile to a fourth forraine Nation. One Ability he had which raised him above the pitch of ordinary Kings, and yet at this day is ordinary with Kings, that by his onely touching and laying his hand upon it, he cured a Disease, which from his Curing, is called The Kings Evill. His Mother Queene Emma, in memory of the nine Plow-shares she had passed in her Tryall, gave nine Manors to the Minster of Winchester, and himselfe remembring the wrong he had done her, bestowed on the same place, the Island of Portland in Dorsetshire, being about seven miles in compasse. He made also of a little Monastery in the West of London by the River of Thames, a most beautifull Church, (called of the place Westminster) where he provided for his owne Sepulchre, and another Dedicated to Saint Mar∣garet, standing without the Abbey. This of Westminster he endowed with many rich revenues, and confirmed his Charters under his broad Seale, being the first of the Kings of England, who used that large and stately Impression in their Charters and Patents. He Founded also the Colledge of Saint Mary Otterey in Devonshire, and gave unto it the Village of Otereg, and removed the Bishops See from Criding¦ton to Exceter, as to a place of farre more Dignity: and when he had Raigned the space of three and twenty yeares and six moneths, he ended his life, the fourth of Ianuary, in that roome of his Palace at Westminster, which is now called the Paynted Chamber, in the yeare 1066. and was buryed in the Church at Westminster, which he had builded.

Page  26

Of Harold the second English King after the Danes.

KIng Edward the Confessour, being himselfe without issue, had in his life time, sent into Hungary for his Nephew Edward called the Outlaw, the sonne of Edmund Ironside; with a purpose to designe him his Successour in the Crowne, but he dying soone after his comming into England, King Edward then gave his Sonne Edgar the name of Atheling; as to say; Prince Edgar meaning to designe him for his Successour, but being prevented by death, before the successour was fully established, and Edgar Atheling, though he had right, yet being young, and not of power to make good his Right, Harold the sonne of Earle Goodwyn steps into the Throne, and never standing upon ceremonies, set himselfe the Crowne upon his owne head, wherein, though as a violater of holy Rites, he offended the Clergy, yet not any either of Clergy or Layity, durst oppose him, as being at that time the most martiall man in the Kingdome; and such a one, as the state of the Realme stood at that time in need of, and besides his owne worthinesse had the assistance of Edwyn and Marchar, the two great Earles of Yorkeshire and Chester, whose sister Algyth he had marryed. It is true withall, that King Edward had appointed the Crowne after his owne decease, sometimes to William Duke of Normandy, sometimes to Edgar Atheling, and sometimes to this Harold, so as he was Crowned by Aldred Arch-bishop of Yorke, as not comming in by intrusion or wrong, but by the appointment of King Edward, though that appointment of King Edwad, was rather to make him Regent, during the minority of Edgar, then to make him absolute King, but howsoever, being once in the Throne, he was then able to make his owne Title, and to make Prince Edgar some amends, he created him Earle of Oxford, which was indeed to use him like a Childe, take away a Je∣well, and please him with an Apple. Yet Harold having once gotten into the Throne, he crryed himselfe with great Valour and Justice, for the time he sate in it, which was but very short, as being indeed but tottering from the very beginning, and that chiefly by meanes of his owne Brother Tostayne, who by diverting his Forces to suppresse a Rebellion, made him of lesse force to resist an invasion. But now that we have shewed how Harold entred the Throne, we must forbeare to shew how he was cast out, till we come to him that cast him out, who because he was not onely of another Family, but of another Nation, we must necessarily take the beginning from a deeper roote, and indeed, seeing in him, we shall joyne our Island to the Continent, which is a larger world: Our Kings hereafter, will afford a larger Extent for matter of Discourse then heretofore they have done.

Page  27


His Parentage and Descent.

THere were six Dukes of Normandie in France, in a direct line succeeding from father to sonne. The first was Rol∣lo, who of a private man in Denmarke, comming forth with the exuberancy of his Nation, wrested by force of Armes from Charles the Simple King of France, to bee made Duke of Normandy. The second was William his sonne, called Long Espee, or Long Sword. The third was Richard his sonne, called the Hardie, who had Richard, and a daughter called Emma, married to Ethelred King of England, father of Edward the Confessor. The fourth was Richard the second his sonne, called the Good. The fifth was Richard the third his sonne, who by a first wife had three sonnes, Richard, Robert and William, and by a second, two other sonnes, William Earle of Argues, and Mager, Archbishop of Roan. So as Richard his eldest sonne by his first wife suc∣ceeded him by the name of Richard the fourth, and dying without issue, the Duke∣dome descended to Robert his second sonne by his first wife; which Robert was fa∣ther to our William the Conquerour, of whom it is thus recorded: that riding one time abroad, he happened to passe by a company of Country Maides that were a dancing, where staying a while to looke upon them, he was so taken with the hand∣somnesse and gracefull carriage of one of them whose name was Arlotte, a Skinners daughter, (from whence as some thinke our word Harlot comes) that affection commanding him, and authority her, he caused her that night to be brought to his bed; where being together, what was done or said betweene them is no matter for History to record, though some Historians have recorded both; making her not so modest as was fit for a Maide: onely tenne monthes after, it appeared that at this time our Duke William was begotten; who proving a man of extraordinary spirit, we may attribute it to the heate of affection in which he was begotten.

His succeeding in the Dukedome, notwithstanding his Bastardie.

IT appeares by many examples, that Bastardie in those dayes was no barre to succession, till a law was afterward made to make it a barre. It brought some disgrace where the mother was meane, but no impediment where the father was Noble; and even his Bastardie seemed to have some allay, if it be true (as some write) that his father tooke the said Arlotte afterward to be his wife, and yet perhaps he had not the Dukedome so much by succession, as by gift. For when hee was a∣bout Page  28 nine yeares old, his father calling his Nobility together, caused them to swear Allegeance to this base sonne of his, and to take him for their Liege Lord after his decease. Neither was this in those dayes infrequent, for Princes to conferre their Principalities after their owne deceases upon whom they pleased; counting it as lawfull to appoint successours after them, as substitutes under them; even in our time and Kingdome, the Duke of Northumberland prevailed with King Edward the sixth, to exclude his two sisters, Mary and Elizabeth, and to appoint the Lady Iane Grey, daughter of the Duke of Suffolke, to succeed him.

His Education and Tuition in his minoritie.

HIs father having declared and appointed him to be his Successour, went soone after (whether out of devotion, or to do Penance for procuring his brothers death, whereof he was suspected) into the Holy Land, in which Journey he died, having left the tuition of his young sonne to his two brothers, and the Guardian∣ship to the King of France, in whose Court for a time he was brought up. A strange confidence, to commit the tuition of a sonne that was base, to Pretenders that were legiiate, and to a King of France, who aimed at nothing more, then to reannexe this Dukedome to his Crowne. But it seemes his confidence was grounded upon the proximitie of blood in his brothers, and upon the merits of his owne service for∣merly done to the King of France; which though it proved well enough with him, yet is not to betaken into example to follow.

His Troubles in his minoritie.

FIrst, Roger de Tresny, who derived his Pedegree directly from Rollo, and had won much honour by his valour in the warres, (notwithstanding the Oath of Alle∣geance he had formerly taken) takes exception to his Bastardy, and invites Compli∣ces to assist him in recovering the Dukedome to legitimate Race: a fale pretext if the Fate of Duke William had not beene against it; who though hee were himselfe but young, and could not do much in his owne person, yet the Divine Providence raised him up friends that supplied him with Assistance, and particularly Roger de Beamont, by whose valour this Roger de Tresny, with his two brothers, was defeated and slaine. After Roger de Tresy, William de Arques his Unckle layes claime to the Dutchy, and assisted by the King of France comes to a battaile, but by the valour of Count Gyfford, the Dukes Generall, was likewise defeated: and these were trou∣bls before he arrived to seventeene yeares of age. After this, one Guy Earle of Bur∣goigne, Grandchild to Richard the second, Duke of Normandy, grew sensible also of his Right to the Dukedome, and joyning with Viscount Neele, and the Earle of Besin, two powerfull Normans, conspired Duke Williams death, and had effected it, if a certaine Foole about him, had not stolne away in the night, to the place where the Duke was, and never left knocking and crying at the gate, till he was admitted to his presence, willing him to flye for his life instantly, or he would be murthered. The Duke considering that being related by a Foole, it was like to be the more palpable, and that there might be danger in staying, none in going, rode instantly away, all alone, toward Falaise, his principall Castle, but missing his way, he happned to passe where a Gentleman was standing at his doore, of whom he asked the way, and was by him, as knowing him, directed; which he had no sooner done, but the conspiratours came presently inquiring if such a one had not passed that way, which the Gentleman affirmed, and undertooke to be their guide to overtake him, but leading them of purpose a contrary way, the Duke by this meanes, came safely to Flise; and from thence journeyes to the King of France, complaining of his injries; and imploring his ayd, as one that wais ho∣mager, and committed to his care by his ervant his Father. The King of France moved with his distrese, and remembrance of his Fathers meris, though he wish∣d he was lesse then he was, yet he o ayded him, that he made him greater then he Page  29 was; for himselfe in person, suffering much in the Battaile, procured him the Victo∣ry. By which we may see that folly, and fortune, and even Enemies themselves are all assistants to the Destinies; or to say better, indeed to the divine Providence. Many other affronts were offered him, some by meaner Princes; some afterward by the King of France himselfe, who was now growne jealous of his Greatnesse; all which he encountred with such dexterity, that made his Bastardy, as it were become Legitimate, and Vertue her selfe to grow proud of his person.

His Carriage afterwards in Peace.

BY this time he was come to the age of two and twenty yeares, and where all this while he had shewed himselfe a valiant Generall in Warre, he now began to shew himselfe a provident Governor in Peace, composing and ordering his state, wherein he so carryed himselfe, that as his Subjects did both feare and love him, so his Neighbouring Princes did both feare and hate him, or if not hate him, at least emulate him.

His Incitements for Invading of England.

HE was now growne about fifty yeares old: an Age that might well have ar∣rested all ambitious thoughts in him, but who can thinke himselfe too old for a Kingdome; when Galba for attaining the Romane Empire, was contented to buckle on Armour, being fourescore yeares old? The Dke in his time of peace came over into England to visite his cousin King Edward, who besides his Princely entertainment, made him at that time (as some thinke) a promise to leave him his Successour in the Kingdome; & Harold after this, going over to the Duk in Norman∣dy, for procuring some friends of his to be released, the better to effect it, tooke his solemne Oath to assist him for obtaining the Kingdome. So as having the word of Edward, and the oath of Harold, he had now sufficient obligations to expect it. But hearing of the death of King Edward, and that Harold was Crowned King, he thought himselfe not more forgotten by Edward, then wronged by Harold; and therefore sent messengers to him to put him in mind of K. Edwards Pomise, and his owne Oath: but Harold puffed up with the conceit of being a King, as though that very name were enough to expiate all breach of Oathes, and that nothing could binde him, who had now the fetters in his owne hand; returned onely sleight an∣swers, that his Oath was forced, and voyd in it selfe, as being made without con∣sent of the Kingdome. Whereupon the Duke thus sleighted by Harold, endevours to make him an honest man by force, assuring himselfe, he should find him the wea∣ker Enemy, for finding him a perjured Friend.

The Reasons that facilitated his Conquest of England.

DUke William incensed with Harolds answers, acquaints his Nobility with his purpose, who with some adoe consented to ayd him, as likewise many other great Lords of France, but specially Baldwyn Earle of Flanders, whose daughter he had marryed; and who being at that time Guardian of the young King of France, procured ayde from him also; and to make the Enterprise the more successefull, Pope Alexander the second sent him a Banner with an Agnus of Gold, and one o the haires of Saint Peter. So as the preparation of the Duke, both by Sea and Land was very great, having three hundred saile of ships, and as some write, 890 and as one Norman, above a thousand, and as Cemeticensis, three thousand: and though Harold had likewise provided a warlike Fleet to encounter him, yet it was at tha time unfortunately diverted another way; for Taustaye his Brother, being then in rebellion in the North, and Harold Harfager: King of Norway, at the same time in∣vading those parts, and perhaps upon a bruite, that the Dukes Fleet was not yet ready to come forth, removed both his Fleet and Army thither: where though he Page  30 got the Victory at Stamford, with the death both of his Brother Toustayne, and of the King of Noway, yet it made way for the Duke to land quietly, and he entred the Kingdome, as one may enter a house, when the doores are all left open. By this meanes King Harlds shipping, (the best wall of defence to an Island) was ut∣terly frustrate: and as for his Land Forces, they were by his Battaile at Stamford, exceedingly both weakned and impaired; yet hearing that Duke William was lan∣ded at Pemsey, not farre from Hastings in Sussex, he repaired thither with all speed, and gathering together his broken Forces, and encreasing them by all the meanes he could, made himselfe ready to give the Duke Battaile. Duke William in the meane time, as soone as he had landed his men, sent his ships presently away, that there might be no thinking of any thing, but either Death or Victory. And then going himselfe on land, it is said, his foot slipped, and he fell downe; which some that stood by, taking for an ill signe, No (saith he) I have by this, taken possessi∣on of this Land. And indeed Presages are but as Animus ejus qui praesagit, as in this Dukes fall it afterwards fell out. Many wayes of composition, betweene Duke William, and King Harold were propounded, yet Harold would hearken to none, as nothing doubting of successe, and perhaps thinking it a disgrace, to capitulate for that, which was now his owne: and when one of his Brothers called Gyrth, being lesse interessed, and therefore clearer sighted, intreated him to consider what a fearefull thing it was to breake an Oath, which he so solemnely had sworne: Ha∣rold seemed to conceive, that nothing which he did, being a private man, could be of force to binde him now being a Prince; and so on the fourteenth day of Octo∣ber, being Saturday, in the yeare 1066. (which day he liked the better, because it was his Birth-day, hoping, that the day of his Birth would not so much degene∣rate, to prove the day of his death, though even this also bred no good blood to the Action, for the Souldiers of Harold, thinking thereby to honour their Kings Birth-day, spent the night before in revelling and drinking, where the Souldiers of the Duke, out of consideration of their next dayes worke, spent the night in quietnesse and devotion) they joyned battaile, (the Kentish-men being placed in the Fore-front, as by an ancient custome is their due, and King Harold with his Londoners, leading the maine Battaile) where though their Armies were not much unequall in number, (for they were each of them neare about threescore thouand men) yet there was great oddes in the expertnesse of their Souldiers, and more in the advantage of their weapons: for, the Duke had with him all the flowre of France and Flanders, where King Harold had lost his best men, in his late Battaile: and for advantage of weapons, the Normans had long Bowes and Arrowes, which of the English at that time, were not at all in use: what mervaile then that the Nor∣mans got the Victory, though King Harold losing his life, yet lost no Reputation; and though the English Souldiers shewed no lesse valour, in being Conquered, then the Normans did in Conquering. One circumstance may not be omitted, that King arold as an expert Generall, had ordered his men in so firme a Body, that no force of the Normans could disorder their Rankes, till Duke William used a Stratagem, commanding his men to retire, and to counterfeit flight; by which he drew the English on, upon a hollow ground, covered with earth, whereinto many of them fell, and perished, and besides into an ambush of his Horsemen, which unexpect∣edly fell upon them, and cut them in pieces. Withall, there seemes one great er∣rour to have beene committed (at least, if it were an errour, and not rather a ne∣cesity) that there was not a supplementall Army provided; (as his Brother Gyrth would have had it) which might have come on if the first had failed, and would have beene of great advantage against a wearyed Army. But when Sic visum est superis, all humane force is weake and cannot withstand, all humane Providence is unprovided, and cannot prevent. The body of Harold at his Mother Thyrace suite was recovered, and lyes buryed in Waltham Abbey, which he had begunne to build, at least to repaire. But here Gyraldus Cambrensis tels a strange story, that Ha∣rold was not slaine in the Battaile, but onely wounded and lost his left eye, and then escaped by flight to Chester, where he afterwards led a holy Anchorets life.

Page  31

How Duke William proceeded after his victory at Hastings.

AS his Valour wonne him the Victory, so his Victory wonne him a Crowne; that now of an old Duke, he was suddenly become a young King: and indeed, nothing so much renues life, and makes the yeares in a manner young againe: as addition of Honour, specially when it is the fruite of merit. First therefore, ha∣ving given publicke thankes to God for his happy successe, he led his Army to∣wards London, not the direct way (perhaps doubting some new Encounter) but coasting about through part of Kent, through Sussex, Surrey, Hampshire and Barke∣shire, where at Wallingford he passed over the Thames; and then through Oxfordshire, Buckinghamshire, and Hartfordshire, untill he came to Barkehamstead, where there came unto him Aldred Arch-bishop of Yorke, Woolstan Bishop of Worcester, Willfere, Bishop of Hereford, and many other Prelates, accompanyed with Edgar Atheling, with Earle Edwyn and Marhar, Brothers, and men of the greatest sway in the Kingdome, and many others of the Nobility. It is true, upon the defeate at Hastings, Earle Edwyn and Marchar, had a purpose to set up Edgar Atheling, as next Heire of the Royall blood; and Grand-childe to Edmund ronside, and so be∣loved of the people, that he was called their Darling: but considering his young yeares, and other inabilities, but specially finding the mindes of the Bishops, (who at that time bore all the sway) to be otherwise inclined, they desisted from that course, and thus the Duke, without any opposition, comming to London, was re∣ceived by Bishops, and Lords and all, with great joy, though small gladnesse, and if he had not their hearts, yet he had their knees, for in most humble manner they submitted themselves to him, acknowledging him for their Soveraigne Lord, and upon Christmas-day after, he was Crowned at Westminster by Aldred Arch-bishop of Yorke, the Arch-bishop of Canterbury Stigand, not being admitted to doe that office, for some defect in his Investiture; and perhaps for some aspersion in his manners.

How he rewarded his followers.:

THough he hath had the name of Conquerour, yet he used not the King∣dome as gotten by Conquest, for he tooke no mans living from him, nor di∣spossessed any of their goods, but such onely, whose demerit made unworthy to hold them; as appeares by his Act to one Warren a Norman, to whom he had gi∣ven the Castle of Sherborne in Norfolke; for when Sherborne, who was owner of it, acquainted the King, that the Castle was his; and that he had never borne Armes against him; he presently commanded Warren, to deliver it quietly up unto him Onely vacancies of Offices, and filling up the places of those who were slaine or fled, were the present meanes he made use of, for preferring his Followers. One speciall preferment we cannot omit, that where one Herlowyn a Nobleman in Nor∣mandy, had marryed his Mother Arlette, and had by her a Sonne named Hugh Lu∣pus, he gave to the said Hugh, the Earledome of Chester, to hold of him as freely by his sword, as himselfe held England by his Crowne, by vertue of which Grant, the said Hugh ordained under him foure Barons, Nigell he made Baron of Halton: Malbanke, Baron of Nantwich: Eustace Baron of Mawpase; and Vernon, Baron of Shipbrooke: Such an Honour, as no Subject before or since, ever enjoyed the like.

What meanes he used for securing himselfe in the Kingdome:

BEsides the Oath of Fealty, which he tooke of all his Lords both Spirituall and Temporall, at his Coronation; in Lent following, going into Normandy, he tooke along with him the greatest part of the great men of the Kingdome, of whom, Edwyn and Marchar, the two Earles of Northumberland and Mercia, StigandPage  32 Arch-bishop of Canterbury, Edgar Atheling, Waltheoff sonne to Syward formerly Earle of Northumberland, and Agelnothus Abbot of Glastenbury were the chiefe; leaving the care of the Kingdome in his absence to Odo Bishop of Bayeux, his Bro∣ther by the Mother; and to William Fits Osburne, whom he had made Earle of He∣reford. And to abate the greatnesse of the Prelates, which at that time was growne in a manner unlimited, he ordained that from thenceforth, they should not com∣mand with any Temporall Authority whatsoever. And because the common peo∣ple are no lesse to be feared for their number, then the Nobility for their greatnesse, he first tooke from them all their Armour, to the end, that leaving them without stings, they might afterward be but Droanes. And because there is seldome any danger from singular numbers, but all the danger riseth from plurality: therefore to prevent conspiracies and combinations, which are commonly contrived in the night, he commanded that in all Townes and Villages, a Bell should be rung at eight a clocke in the Evening, and that in every house they should then put out their Fire and Lights (which was called Couure Feu) and goe to Bed. And for more security he erected Castles in the most doubtfull places of the Kingdome. One at Yorke, another at Lincolne, a third at Nottingham, (at that time called Snottingham) and a fourth at Hastings, where he first Landed. By these meanes the Kingdome was quiet all the time of his being away in Normandy, saving onely that Edrick the Forester, in the County of Hereford, calling in to his ayde the Kings of Wales, made some small disturbance. And indeed all the States of the Kingdome might in his very person finde something to make them apt to tolerate his Government. For first, the People might thinke themselves in a sort advanced, being now made members of a greater Body; when the Dukedome of Normandy should come to be annexed to the Kingdome of England; and by experience of his good Governe∣ment being a Duke, they might well hope, he would not governe worse being made a King. And the Nobility might be well content, as having a King of their former Kings choosing, and though a Stranger, yet no Alien, as having in him many veines of the same blood, and therefore likely also to have some venes of the same goodnesse, of their good King Edward. But specially the Clergy could not chuse but be content, as having a King who came commended to them, by a commending as strong as a commanding, the Popes Benediction.

What Troubles or Insurrections were during his Raigne.

BUt the Body of a State being more obnoxious to crudities and ill humours, then the state of a Naturall body; It is impossible to continue long without distem∣pers; notwithstanding any preservatives that can be applyed. And therefore in the second yeare of his Raigne, brake forth the discontentment of Edgar Etheling, justly the first, as having most cause, being the next of the late Royall blood, and therefore most apt to be sensible of servitude; who taking along with him his mo∣ther Agatha, and his two Sisters, Margaret and Christine; stole secretly away to Sea, with intention to passe into Hungary, the Country where he was borne; but by contary winds was cast upon the Coast of Scotland, where the King Malcolme, not onely most kindly entertained him, but for a stricter bond of kindnesse, tooke his Sistr Margaret to Wife, by whom he had many Children, out of which, in the second Generation after, a match was found, by which in the person of King Henry the second, the Saxn and Norman blood were conjoyned, the union where∣of continues in the race of our Kings of England to this day. Not long after to Ed∣gar in Scotland, came the two great Earles, Edwyn and Marchar, brothers to Aga∣tha the late King Harolds Wife; also Hereward, Gospatrick, and Syward, with many other Lords; and shortly after Stigand and Aldred Arch-bishops, with divers of the Clergy. And these Lords being together in Scotland, did but watch opportu∣nity, to recover that, which for want of taking opportunity they had lost; And assisted by the Scots, they invaded the North parts, spoyling the Country, and kil∣ling many for the fault they had themselves committed, but all they could do, was but to forrage the Country, and so returne.

Page  31After this, in the third yeare of his Raigne, the two sonnes of Swayne King of Denmarke, Harold and Canutus, with a Fleet of 240. ships, entered Humber, and inva∣ded the North parts, with whom the English Lords in Scotland joyned, and orra∣ged all the Country, till they came neere to Yorke. When the Normans that were in the Towne, to save the City, set fire on the suburbs; but the fire not so contented, by assistance of a violent winde, tooke hold of the City it selfe, burning a great part of it, and which perhaps was more worth then the City, a Library of excellent Bookes, and the Normans that were left in defence of the City, to the number of three thousand, were all slaine. King William hearing hereof was so much incensed, that with all speed he raised an Army, and entred Northumberland, wasting the Country that already lay wast; and yet for all his great rage, was contented with a great summe of money, to purchase the Danes departure. By these devastations in many Shires of the Kingdome, but especially in Northumberland, so great a Dearth and Famine followed, that men were glad to eate horses and dogges, cats and rats, and what ele is most abhorrent to nature; and betweene Yorke and Durham, the space of 60. miles, for nine yeares together, there was so utter desolation, as that nei∣ther any house was left standing, nor any ground tilled.

Many other insurrections there were in his Raigne; as at Exceter, at Oxford, in the Isle of Ely, and many times by the Scots in the Northerne parts; but all these were easily supprest, for they were but scattered Forces; Et dum singuli pugnant, universi vincuntur; whereas if they had united themselves into an Army, they might perhaps have made it a Warre, which now were little more then Routs and Riots. Yet some write, that King William granted Cumberland to Malcolme King of Scots, to hold from him conditionally, that the Scots should not attempt any thing prejudiciall to the Crowne of England, for which Grant King Malcolme did him Homage.

The greatest and last was an Insurrection raised in Normandie, by his sonne Robert, the more dangerous because unnatural, for by the instigation and assistance of Phi∣lip King of France, (emulous now of K. Williams greatnesse) he entred Normandie, & claimed it as in his owne right. His father indeede had made him a promise of it long before, but Robert impatient of delay, as counting so long staying to bee little better then disinheriting, endeavoured by strong hand to wrest it from his father. But his father King William hearing hereof, with a strong Army passeth over into Normandie, where in a battaile meeting hand to hand with his sonne, was by him unhorsed, and hurt in the arme: but his sonne perceiving him by his voyce to bee his father, suddenly leapes off his horse, takes up his father, casts himselfe downe at his feete, and humbly intreats his pardon; which as a father he easily grants, em∣braceth his sonne, and ever after, the sonne from the father had fatherly love, and the father from the sonne a filiall obedience. But though his father did thus par∣don him, yet it seemes there is a Nemesis, or to say better, a Divine Providence, that did not pardon him; for after this, it is observed he never prospered in any thing hee undertooke. It cannot perhaps be discovered, whether the Kings severity begat his subjects Insurrections, or his subjects Insurrections the Kings severity; but which of them soever was the mother, it is certaine they were nurses each of them to o∣ther.

His aptnesse to forget Injuries.

CErtainly there is no such goodnesse of nature, as aptnesse to be reconciled; of which vertue it seemes King William had a large proportion, for he seldome re∣membred injuries after submission. Edric the first that rebelled against him, he pla∣ced in Office neere about him. Gospatric who had beene a factious man, and a plot∣ter of conspiracies against him, he made Earle of Glocester, and trusted him with ma∣naging a War against Malcolme King of Scots. Eustace Earle of Boleyne, who in the Kings absence in Normandy attempted to seise upon Dover Castle, he received after∣ward into great favour and respect. The Earles Marchar & Syward, with Wolnoth the brother of Harold, a little before his death, he released out of prison. Edgar, who as Page  32 next heire to the Saxon Kings, had often attempted by Armes to recover his right, he not onely after twice defection pardoned, but gave him also allowance as a Prince: It is said twenty shillings a day, or rather a pound weight of silver, and other large livings besides; so as Edgar finding the sweetnesse of safety, and the pleasures of a Country life, spent the rest of his dayes (which were many) retired from Court, neither envying nor being envyed. Only Waltheoff Earle of Northumberland, and Northamton, of all the English Nobility was put to death in all the time of this Kings Raigne; and not he neither, till hee had twice falsified his Oath of Allege∣ance.

Of new Acquests to this Kingdome, by this Kings meanes.

IN the thirteenth yeare of his Raigne, he subdued Wales, and made it tributary to him, as before in the seaventh yeare of his Raigne, he brought Malcolme King of Scots to do him Homage, and thereupon to give him Hostages; that if England made him greater then he was before, a King of a Duke; he no lesse made Eng∣land greater then it was before, three Kingdomes in one.

Of his Exactions and courses for raysing of money.

AS his Taxations were many in number, so they were various in kinde, not al∣wayes bringing in money directly, but sometimes obliquely saving it. The first taxe he laid upon his subjects was in the first yeare of his Raigne, after his re∣turne out of Normandie; a grievous taxe all writers say, but none what taxe it was. In the third yeare of his Raigne he ransacked all Monasteries, and all the gold and silver of either Chalices or Shrines, he tooke to his owne use. Likewise he Sessed all Bishops and Abbots what number of souldiers they should finde to serve him in his warres: also the strangers which he maintained in Pay, he dipsersed into Religi∣ous houses, and some also among the Nobility to bee maintained at their charge. Many other taxations he made, but last of all in the eighteenth yeare of his Raigne, by the advise of Roger Earle of Hertford, he caused the whole Realme to be descri∣bed in a Censuall Roll, (whereof hee tooke a President from King Alfred) so as there was not one Hyde of Land, but both the yearely rent, and the owner thereof was therein set downe: How many Ploughlands, what Pastures, Fennes or Marishes, what Woods, Farmes, and Tenements were in every Shire, and what every one was worth: Also how many Villaines every man had; what Beasts, what Cattell, what Fes, what other goods, what rent or commodity his Possessions did yeeld. This booke was called the Roll of Winton, because it was kept in the City of Win∣chester. By the English it was called Doomesday booke, either by reason of the ge∣nerality thereof, or else corruptly, instead of Domu Dei booke, for that it was laid in the Church of Winchester, in a place called Domu Dei. According to this Roll taxa∣tions were imposed; sometimes two shillings, and at this time six shillings upon e∣very Hyde of Land, (a Hyde containing as some account it, twenty Acres, bu as Master Lambert proveth, a hundred Acres.) In all those Lands which he gave to any man, hee reserved Dominion in chiefe to himselfe, as also a yearely rent, and likewise a Fine whensoever the Tenant did alien or dye. These were bound to him by Oath of Fealty and Homage, and if any died, his heire being within age, the King received the profits of his Lands, and had the custody and disposing of the heires body, untill his age of one and twenty yeares. To be short, his greedinesse of money was so great, that he spared not his owne brother Odo, but found accusati∣ons against him to the end he might seise upon his Treasure; which was infinite great, and which he had gathered in hope to buy the Papacy. Onely one kinde of profit he forbare to meddle with, that is, Vacancies of Abbeys and Bishopricks, which he alwayes reserved for the Successours: but then he tooke another course of farre greater profit, for he compelled all men to make new Fines at his pleasure, for confirmation of any Grant or Priviledges formerly granted by any Prince of the Page  35 Realme: by which devise he got into his possession, the greatest part of all the ri∣ches of the Land, as well of the Clergie, as of the Laity. And one particular may not be omitted that is reported of him, which was this: The Monkes of Ely to pur∣chase their peace, agreed to give him seven hundred Markes, when comming to pay it, there wanted a Groat in the weight, (for in those dayes greater summes were not payd by tale, but by weight) which the King understanding, denied them all com∣position for Peace, untill with much suite he was intreated to accept of a thousand Markes more.

Of his Lawes and Ordinances, and Courts of Iustice erected by him.

ALthough at his Coronation he had taken an Oath to observe the Lawes of King Edward then in use, yet afterwards (perhaps counting his Coronation Oath but a matter of course) he abrogated many, and in their stead brought in the Lawes of Normandie; commanding them to be written in French, and also that all Causes should be Pleaded, and all matters of Forme dispatched in French; upon a pretense to dignifie the French tongue, but with a purpose to intrappe men through ignorance of the language, as indeed it did: or perhaps to make the Normans lan∣guage predominant in the Kingdome as he had made their persons; which yet hee was so farre from effecting, that there is not so much as any footsteps remaining of the Norman language in the English tongue. Formes of Judgement, and trials by Fire and Water, called Ordeal, formerly used, were in short time after the Conquest disused, and in the end utterly abrogated by the Pope, as derived from Paganisme. That of Combat continued longer, but of no ordinary use: and all actions both cri∣minall and reall, began now to be wholly adjudged by the Verdict of twelve men, according to the custome of Normandie, where the like Forme is used, and called by the name of Enquest, with the same cautions for the Jurours, as it is here continued to this day; though by the Lawes of Ethelred it appeares, that the triall by twelve men was in use long before his time. And where before the Bishop and the Alder∣man were the absolute Judges to determine all businesse in every Shire, and the Bi∣shop, in many Cases, shared in the benefit of the Mulcts with the King; now hee confined the Clergie within the Privince of their owne Ecclesiasticall Jurisdicti∣on, to deale onely in businesse concerning rule of soules, according to the Canons and Lawes Episcopall. And where the Causes of the Kingdome were before de∣termined in every Shire, and by a Law of King Edward, all matters in question were upon speciall penalty decided in their Gemote, or Conventicle held monethly in e∣very Hundred: Now he ordained that foure times in the yeare, for certaine daies, the same businesses should be determined in such place as he would appoint, where he constituted Judges to attend for that purpose. Also he Decreed there should be Sheriffes in every Shire, and Justices of Peace for punishment of Malefactors. Final∣ly he ordained his Councell of State, his Chancery, his Exchequer, (Scaccarium cor∣ruptly called so, of the word Statarium, or rather of the Boord or Table where the Officers sate;) also his Courts of Justice, which alwayes removed with his Court. These places he furnished with Officers, and assigned foure Termes in the yeare for determining controversies among the people. The place of these Courts was Westminster, where King William Rufus afterward built a stately Palace. Now for his provisionary Revenues, the Kings Tenants who held Lands of the Crowne, payd him no money at all, but onely Corne and other victuals; and a just note of the quality and quantity of every mans ratement, was taken through out all the Shires of the Kingdome, and levyed ever certaine, for maintenance of the Kings house. Onely the Kentish men procured the continuance of their ancient Lawes by a trick; for King William riding towards Dover, at Swnscombe two miles from Gravesend, the Kentish men met him, but in the forme of a moving wood, by reason of the great boughes they had cut and carried in their hands, and compassing the King a∣bout, they onely made suite for the continuan of their Lawes, which the King without any great scruple granted, and glad he was so ridde of them. A strange con∣ceite Page  36 in the Kentish men, to hazard themselves more, for the preserving a simple Cu∣stome; then for preserving the Liberty of themselves and their Country: But such is the violence of conceit, till it be mastered by time, or rather so very a Changeling is Humane Reason, that what they then cut downe great Woods to defend, they have since beene content to see abolished, without cutting downe so much as a twigge. But one Law especially he made, extreamely distastefull to all the Gen∣try of the Land: for where before they might at their pleasure hunt and take Deere which they found abroad in the Woods; Now it was Ordained, under a great penalty, no lesse then putting out their eyes; that none should presume to kill or take any of them, as reserving them onely for his owne delight. And in∣deed so great delight he tooke in that kinde of sport, that he depopulated a great part of Hamshire, the space of thirty miles, where there had beene (saith Caron) six and twenty Townes, and fourescore Religious Houses, and made it a Habitati∣on for such kind of Beasts; which was then, and to this day is called the New-Forest. But the lamentable dysasters that have happened to this Kings Issue, doe plainely shew, that there is a power, that observes all our Actions, and which we may know to be Memorem Fandi atque Nefandi. But in the first yeare of this Kings Raign, he granted to the City of London, their first Charter and Liberties, in as large forme, as they enjoyed them in the time of King Edward the Confessor, which he granted at the suite of William a Norman, Bishop of London; in gratefull remem∣brance whereof, the Lord Major and Aldermen, upon the solemne dayes of their resort to Pauls, doe still use to walke to the Gravestone, where this Bishop lies in∣terred. Also this King was the first, that brought the Jewes to inhabite here in England, as likewise he made a Law, that whosoever forced a woman, should lose his genitals: and in his time, long Bowes came first into use in England, which as they were the weapons with which France under this King Conquered England: so they were the weapons with which England under after-Kings, Conquered Frace; as if it were not enough for us to beate them, if we did not beate them with their owne weapons. This King also appointed a Constable of Dover Ca∣stle, and a Lord Warden of the Cinque-Ports, with Immunities as they are at this day.

Affaires of the Church in his Raigne.

IN the twelfth yeare of his Raigne, Lanfranke Arch-bishop of Canterbury, held a Synod at London, where amongst other things, he removed Bishops Sees, from small Townes to great Cities, as from Silliway to Chichester; from Kyrton to Exce∣ter; from Wells to Bathe; from Shirborne to Salisbury; from Dorchester to Lincolne; and from Lichfield to Chester; and from thence againe to Coventry; and not long before, the Bishopricke of Lindafferne, otherwise called Holy Land, upon the ri∣ver Tweede, had beene translated to Durham. In the sixth yeare of his Raigne, a controversie arising betweene the two Arch-bishops of Canterbury and Yorke, they appealed to Rome, and the Pope remitted it to the King and Bishops of England. Hereupon a Synod is holden at Windsor, where sentence was given on Lanfranks then Arch-bishop of Canterburies side: that in matters of Religion, the Arch-bishop of Yoke, should ever be subject to the Arch-bishop of Canterbury: Onely at Rome it was decreed, for matter of Title, that the See of Yorke should be stiled Primas Angliae, and the See of Canterbury, Primas totius Angliae, as it is at this day. And as the Arch-bishop of Yorke oweth obedience to the Arch-bishop of Canterbury; So all the Bishops of Scotland owe obedience to the Arch-bishop of Yorke, as to the Primate of Scotland.

But as this King tooke downe the Prelates in Temporalties, for he ordained they should exercise no Temporall Authority at all; So in Spiritualties, he rather raised them, as may be seene by a passage betweene Aldred Arch-bishop of York, and the King: for at a time, upon the repulse of a certaine suite, the Arch-bishop in great discontentment offered to depart, when the King, in awe of his displeasure, stayed Page  37 him, fell downe at his feet, desired pardon, and promised to grant his suite. The King all this while being downe at the Arch-bishops feet the Noblemen that were present, put him in mind that he should cause the King to arise, Nay (saith the Arch-bishop) let him alone, let him find what it is to anger Saint Peter. And as by this story, we see the insulting pride of a Prelate in those dayes: So by ano∣ther, we may see the equivocating false-hood of a Prelate at that time; For St∣gand Arch-bishop of Canterbury would often sweare, he had not one penny upon the Earth, when under the Earth it was afterward found he had hidden great Trea∣sure. Also it is memorable, but scarce credible of another Bishop, who being accused of Simony, and denying i, the Cardinall before whom he was to An∣swer, told him, that a Bishopricke was the gift of the Holy Ghost, and therefore to buy a Bishopricke, was against the Holy Ghost, and thereupon bid him say, Glo∣ry be to the Father, and to the Sonne, and to the Holy Ghast; which the Bishop beginning, and oft essaying, could never say, [and to the Holy Ghost] but said it plainely when he was put out of his Bishopricke. And yet was not the Church in that Age so barren of Vertue, but that it afforded some good Bishops, as William Bishop of Durham, Founder of University Colledge in Oxford, but specially Bi∣shop Woolstan; whom, upon Lanfrankes reporting, to be insufficient for the place, for want of Learning, the King commanded to put off his Pontificall Robes, and to leave his Bishopricke: when suddenly out of a divine Inspiration, Woolstan an∣swered: A better then you, O King, bestowed these Robes upon me, and to him I will restore them. And therewithall going to Saint Edwards Shrine, who had made him a Bishop, and putting off his Robes, he strucke his Staffe upon Saint Ed∣wards Monument, which stucke so fast in the stone of it, that by no strength it could be drawne forth, till he drew it forth himselfe: which so terrifyed both Lanfranke and the King, that they intreated him to take his Robes againe, and keepe his Bi∣shopricke. Also Oswald Bishop of Salisbury, who devised a Forme of Prayers to be daily used in his Church, and was used afterwards in other Churches, from whence proceeded the common saying of Secundum usum Sarum. In this Kings time was Berengarius, who denyed the true body of Christ to be in the Sacrament; Al∣so in his time, Pope Gregory the seventh, removed marryed Priests from execu∣ting Divine Service, whereof great troubles arose in England.

Workes of Piety, by him, and others in his time.

THis King Founded the Abbey of Baltell in Sussex, where he overcame Harold; the Abbey of Selby in Yorkeshire; and a third neere London, called Saint Savi∣ours. He founded also the Priory of Saint Nicholas at Exceter; and gave great priviledges to Saint Martins le Grand in London; which Church was founded be∣fore the Conquest, by Ingelricus and Emardus his Brother, Cousins to King Ed∣ward the Confessour. These were this Kings workes of Piety in England, but in Normandy he Founded also an Abbey at Caen: where his Wife Maude built like∣wise a Monastery of Nunnes. He gave also to the Church of Saint Stephens in Caen, two Manors in Dorsetshire, one Mannor in Devonshire, another in Essex, much Land in Barkeshire, some in Norfolke, a Mansion house in Woodstreete; London, with many Advowsons of Churches, and even he gave his Crowne and Regall Ornaments to the said Church, being of his owne Foundation, for the redempti∣on whereof, his Sonne Henry gave the Manour of Brydeton in Dorsetshire. In this Kings time, Robert, sonne to Hyldebert Laie, Founded the Priory of Ponfraite; Henry Earle Ferrers Founded a Priory within his Castle at Tutbury; Alwyn Chylde, a Citizen of London, Founded the Monastery of Saint Saviours at Bermondsey in Southwarke, and gave to the Monkes there divers Rents in London: Also in this Kings time, Mauric Bishop of London, after the firing of the former Church of Saint Paul in London, began the Foundation of the new Church, a worke so admi∣rable, that many thought it would never have beene finished. Towards the buil∣ding of the East end whereof, the King gave the choyce stones of his Castle, at Page  38 the West end of the City, upon the banke of the River Thames; which Castle ha∣ving beene at that time fired, in place thereof Edward Kilwarby Arch-bishop of Canterbury, did afterwards Found a Monastery of Blacke-fryers. The King also gave the Manor of Storford to the same Maurice, and to his Successours in that See; after whose decease, Richard his next Successour, bestowed all the Rents of his Bishopricke, to advance the building of this Church, maintaining himselfe by his private Patrimony; and yet all he could doe, made no great shew, but the finish∣ing of the worke was left to many other succeeding Bishops. In the fifteenth yeare of this Kings Raigne, William Bishop of Durham, Founded University Colledge in Oxford: Also one Gylbert a Norman Lord, Founded the Abbey of Merton in Sur∣rey, seven miles from London; and Thomas Arch-bishop of Yorke, first builded the Minster of Yorke. In this Kings sixteenth yeare, his Brother Duke Robert, being sent against the Scots, builded a Fort, where at this day standeth New Castle up∣on Tyne: but the Towne and Walls wre builded afterward by King Iohn. Also in this Kings time, Ledes Castle in Kent was builded by Creveken, and the Castle of Oxford, by Robert d' Oylie: two Noble men that came into England with him. Osmond Bishop of Salisbury built the new Church there; Also Waring Earle of Shrewesbury, built two Abbeyes, one in the Suburbs of Shrewesbury, and another at Wenlocke.

Casualties happening in his time.

IN the twentyeth yeare of his Raigne, so great a fire happened in London, that from the West-gate to the East-gate, it consumed Houses and Churches all the way, and amongst the rest the Church of Saint Paul, the most grievous fire that ever happened in that City. Also this yeare, by reason of distemperature of wea∣ther, there insued a Famine: and afterwards a miserable mortality of Men and Cattell. Also this yeare in the Province of Wales, upon the Sea shoare, was found the body of Gawen, sisters sonne to Arthur, the great King of the Britaines: repor∣ted to be foureteene foot in length. Also in this Kings time, a great Lord itting at a Feast, was set upon by Mice, and though he were removed from Land to Sea, and from Sea againe to Land, yet the Mice still followed him, and at last devou∣red him.

Of his Wife and Children.

HE had to Wie, and her onely; Mathilde or Maude, Daughter to Baldwyn Earle of Flanders. She was Crowned Queene of England, the second yeare of his Raigne: the seventeenth yeare of his Raigne, she dyed; a Woman onely memo∣rable for this, that nothing memorable is Recorded of her, but that she built a Nunnery at Caen in Normandy, where she lies Buryed. By her he had foure sonnes and fiv daughters. His Sonnes were, Robert, Richard, William, and Henry: of whom Robert the eldest, called Court-cayse, of his short thighes, or Court-hose, of his short Breeches, or Courtois, of his courteous behaviour: (for so many are the Comments upon his name) succeeded his Father in the Dutchy of Normandy. Richard his second Sonne, was kild by mis-fortune, hunting in the New-Forest. William his third Sonne, called Rufus, succeeded his Father in the Kingdome of England. Henry his youngest Sonne called Beauclerke, for his Learning, had by his Fathers Will, five thousand pounds in money, and the inheritance also of his Mo∣ther. His Daughters were Cicelie, Cnstance, Adela, Margaret, and Elenor, of whom Cicelie was Abbesse of Caen in Normandy. Constance was marryed to Alan Earle of Britaine. Adela to Stephen Earle of Blois. Margaret affianced to Harold King of Eng∣land, but never marryed, and dyed young. Elenor, betroathed to Alphonsus King of Gallitia, but desiring to dye a Virgin, she had her wish, spending her time so much in Prayer, that with continuall kneeling, her knees were brawned.

Page  39

Of his Personage and Conditions.

HE was but meane of stature, yet bigge of body, and therewithall so strong, that few were able to draw his Bow: growing in yeares, he was bald before; his beard alwayes shaven, after the manner of the Normans; and where in his young∣er time, he was much given to that infirmity of Youth, which grows out of strength of Youth, Incontinency: after he was once marryed, whether out of satiety, or out of Grace, he was never knowne to offend in that kind. Of so perfit health, that he was never sicke, till that sicknesse whereof he dyed. Of a sterne counte∣nance, yet of an affable nature: In warre, as expert as valiant: In Peace, as pro∣vident as prudent: and in all his Enterprises, as Fortunate, as Bold and Hardy. Much given to Hunting and Feasting, wherein he was no lesse pleasant then mag∣nificent. He made no great proficience in Learning; as having had his education in the licentiousnesse of the French Court: yet he favoured learned men; and drew out of Italy, Lanfranke, Anselme, Durand, Traherne, and divers others, famous at that time for Learning and Piety. Very devout he was, and alwayes held the Clergy in exceeding great Reverence: And this is one speciall honour attributed unto him, that from him we beginne the Computation of our Kings of Eng∣land.

His Places of Residence.

HIs Christmas he commonly kept at Glocester; his Easter at Wichester; and his Whisontide at Westminster; and once in the yeare, at one of these places would be new Crowned; as though by often putting on his Crowne, he thought to make it sit the easier upon his head. And for the houses which the Kings of England had in those dayes in London; I finde that at Westminster was a Palace, the ancient ha∣bitation of the Kings of England, from the time of Edward the Confessour: which in the Raigne of King Henry the Eight, was by casuall fire burnt downe to the ground. A very large and stately Palace this was, and in that Age, for building incomparable. The Remaines whereof, are the Chamber of assembling the High Court of Parliament, and the next unto it, wherein anciently they were wont to beginne the Parliament, called Saint Edwards painted Chamber, because the Tra∣dition holdeth, that the said King Edward dyed in it. Adjoyning unto this, is the White-hall, wherein at this day the Court of Requests is kept; Beneath this is the Great Hall, where Courts of Justice are now kept: This Hall which we now have, was built by King Richard the second, out of the Ground; as appeareth by his Armes engraven in the stone worke: (when he had plucked downe the old Hall, built before by William Rufus) and made it his owne habitation. But the aforesaid Palace, after it was burnt downe in anno 152. lay desolate, and King Henry the Eighth shortly after translated the Kings seat, to a house not farre off, built by Car∣dinall Woolsey and is called White-Hall. The Tower of London also was anci∣ently used by the Kings of England to lodge in. Other Houses they anciently had; one where Bridewell now standeth, out of the ruines whereof, the now Bridewell was built. Another called the Tower Royall, now the Kings Wardrobe. Another in Bucklers-bury, called Sernes Tower. Another where now the Popes-head Ta∣verne is, over against the Old Exchange; and oftentimes they made use of Baynards Castle. But these are all long since demolished, that we may see Palaces and places have their Faes and periods as well as men.

His Death and Buriall.

TOwards the end of his Raigne, he appointed his two sonnes Robert and Henry with joynt authority, Governors of Normandy: These went together, to visit the King of France, lying at Constance, where entertaining the time with variety of Page  40 sports; Henry played with Lewis the Daulphin of France at Chesse, and winning much money of him, Lewis grew so cholericke, that he threw the Chess-men at Henries face; calling him the sonne of a Bastard: and thereupon Henry strucke Lew∣is with the Chess-board, and had presently slaine him, if his Brother Robert had not stept in, and stayed him. Upon this the King of France invades Normandy, and drawes Robert, King Williams eldest sonne, to joyne with him against his Fa∣ther: but King William comming presently over with an Army, was soone recon∣ciled to his Sonne, yet being corpulent and in yeares, was by this meanes much distempered in Body, and so retyred to Roan, where he stayed, as not being well in health. The French King hearing of his sicknesse, scoffingly said, that he lay in Childe-bed of his great belly. Which so incensed King William, that he swore by Gods Resurrection and his Brightnesse, (his usuall Oath) that assoone as he should be Churched of that Childe, he would offer a thousand Lights in France; and indeed he performed it; for he entred France in Armes, and et many Townes and Corne-fields on fire, in which he was so violent, that by reason of his travaile and the unreasonable heate, being in the moneth of August, it brought upon him a relapse of his sicknesse, and withall, leaping on horse-backe over a ditch, his fat belly did beare so hard upon the pommell of his saddle, that he tooke a rupture in his inner parts; whereupon returning to Roan, his sicknesse so encreased, that in short time he dyed; and that which is scarce credible, yet Recorded for certaine, the very same day he dyed at Roan, his death was knowne at Rome, a thousand miles off. In all the time of his sicknesse, he retained to the very last, his memo∣ry and speech: and shewed many demonstrations of Devotion, and true contri∣tion, specially for his severity used towards the English. And thus he who was a Conquerour of men, was conquered himselfe by death; the ninth day of Septem∣ber, when he had Raigned twenty yeares, and neare eleven moneths, in the three∣score and fourth yeare of his age: I may well say, he was conquered by Death; seeing death used him more despitefully then ever he living used any whom he had conquered: For no sooner was the breath out of his body, but his attendants purloyning what they could lay hands on, forsooke him and fled: leaving his bo∣dy almost naked upon the Ground. Afterwards, William Arch-bishop of Roan, commanded his body should be conveyed to Caen, but his command was little re∣garded: till at last, one Hrlewyne, a Country Knight, at his owne charges caused his body to be Embalmed, and conveyed thither; where the Abbot and Monkes meeting the Corps, suddenly in the middest of their solemnities, a violent fire brake out in the Towne, with the fright whereof, every man left the place; and thus was his body the second time left forlorne. In the end a few Monkes retur∣ned and accompanyed the Herse to the Abbey Church; but when the Divine Office was ended, and the body ready to be laid in the Grave, one Anselme Fits Arthur, stood up, and claimed that Ground to have beene the Floore of his Fathers house, which King William had violently wrested from him; and thereupon charged them, as they would answer it before the dreadfull face of God, not to cover his Body with the Earth of his Inheritance. Whereupon after some pause, agreement was made with him, and three pound was payed in hand for the Ground broken up, and a hundred pounds more afterward for the Ground it selfe, payed him by Henry the Kings youngest Sonne, who onely of all his Sonnes was present at the Funerall. And yet this was not all, but when his Body was to be put in the Earth, it happened that the Sepulchre of Stone which stood within the Gave, was hewne somewhat too strait for his fat belly, so as they were faine to presse it downe with some violence, with which, whether his bowels burst, or whether some Excrements were forced out of their naturall passage; such an intolerable stinke proceeded from him, that none were able to endure it, but made all the hast they could to be gone. And yet neither was this the last of his miseries: For in the yeare, 1562. when Castillion tooke the City of Caen, certaine dissolute Soul∣diers opened his Tombe, and not finding the Treasure they expected, threw forth his bones with great derision: whereof some were afterward brought into England.Page  41 So that if we consider his many troubles in life, and after his death, we may well thinke, that notwithstanding all his greatnesse, a very meane man would hardly be perswaded to change fortunes with him.

Men of Note in his time.

MEn of Learning in his time, were but rare in this Island, yet some there were, particularly Marianus Scotus, a Historiographer, and Alpheredus a Monke oBeverley, a Writer also of Historicall Argument. And as for Men of Valour, they are not to be expected in a time of Servitude, but as if all the English Valour were now remaining in the Kentish men, they onely made resistance, when all other Countries had submitted.

Page  42


KING William the Second called Rufus, second Son to William the Conquerour, appointed Successor by his Fathers Will; was upon the fifth of October, in the yeare 1087. by Lanfranke Arch∣bishop of Canterbury, Crowned at Westminster King of England. Wherein his Father seemes to have followed the Example of Iacob, who gave to his younger sonne Ioseph, the Land which he had taken with his Sword and his Bow: for with his sword and his Bow, had King William gotten the Land of England; and therefore might justly bestow it on which of his Sonnes he pleased. And be∣sides, there was cause enough, why he should shew this Sonne of his some extra∣ordinary favour, seeing in the Rebellion of his brother Robert, yet he stood firme∣ly for his Father; and in his quarrell incurred no small hazard of his life, as where∣in he received divers wounds: and perhaps also, his Father thought the rough dis∣position of this sonne, fitter to bridle the insurrections of the English, then the soft∣ly disposition of his sonne Robert.

But though he have thus quietly gotten the Crowne, he must not looke to hold it so; and indeed at his very beginning is assaulted with two troubles in one: for both his Brother Robert prepares to recover it from him, and the Lords of the King∣dome combine with Robert to assist him in it. The first mover of this trouble was Odo Bishop of Bayeux, his Unckle, who finding himselfe not to beare the sway he expected, and specially for an old grudge he bore to Lanfranke, Arch-bishop of Canterbury, as by whose means, in the former Kings time he had bin imprisoned (the Arch-bishop telling him, that though he might not imprison a Bishop, yet he might imprison an Earle of Kent, as this Odo was made not long before) he drawes ma∣ny other Bishops and Temporall Lords to joyne with him in behalfe of Duke Ro∣bert, against the King: but though the storme were violent for a while, yet it soon passed over; that indeed of his Lords, with more difficulty: but that of his bro∣ther Robert with more cost: For it was at last agreed, that Rufus should pay him three thousand markes a yeare, during his life, and leave him the Kingdome after his owne decease. But there was difficulty in repressing his Rebell Lords, by rea∣son of their spreading themselves abroad in many quarters. For Odo fortifyed him∣selfe in Kent; Roger Montgomery, Earle of Shrewsbury, in Norfolke, Suffolke, and Cambridgeshire; Hugh de Grandmenill, in Leycestershire, and Northamptonshire; Ro∣bert Page  43 Mowbray Earle of Northumberland, possest himselfe of Bristow; William Bishop of Durham, of the North parts of the Realme; and divers other of the Clergy, and Nobility, fortify themselves in Herefordshire, Shropshire, Worcestershire, and all the Countries adjoyning to Wales, thinking by this meanes to distract the King that he should not know where to beginne, nor whither to turne him. But this course, as it made it hard to represse them suddenly, so it made it easie to represse them at leisure; for being thus divided, they were but as single stickes, that are easily broken; where if they had united themselves, as into a Faggot, they might have made a strength of farre greater resistance. But the King having Lanfranke Arch-bishop of Canterbury, and Woolstan Bishop of Worcester, firme of his side: partly by their Authority and love amongst the people; but chiefely by his owne promises, to restore their ancient Lawes, and to allow them liberty of hunting in his Forests, he so firmely wonne the hearts of all unto him; that some of the Re∣bell Lords he reconciled with faire words, as Robert Montgomery; (a principall sinew of the Faction) some againe he mastered by strong hand, and Odo the chiefe Engineere of all the worke, he besieged in the Castle of Rochester, tooke him Pri∣soner, and forced him to abjure the Realme. And thus this great Rebellion was suppressed: In which it is observable, that though so many hot bloods were up, yet there was but little blood spilt. A happy rebellion for the English; for the Rebell Lords and Bishops being all Normans, the King had none to trust to, but the English, whom for their faithfulnesse to him in this service, he ever after re∣spected more then he had done befoe.

After this storme was over in the South, there ariseth another in the North; For now Malcolme King of Scots, thinking it a fit time to doe some feates when King William was troubled at home; invades Northumberland, and having burnt and spoyled the Country, returnes home laden with booties. Which King William hearing, he takes his brother Robert along with him, and with a mighty Army en∣ters Scotland, brings Malcolme to acknowledge his ancient homage: and upon Faith given, returnes to London. After this, Duke Robert finding his brother King William, not to keep his promise, in paying his Pension, complaines to the King of France, and with his ayde, assaults and takes some Townes, which he before had delivered in pawne for money to his brother King William; who hearing of it, hastens into Normandy with an Army, and by the mediation of money takes off the King of France, and makes his brother, being left destitute of assistance, to aske him pardon: a wise and mercifull course in King William; for to buy his peace with the King of France, did cost him but money, where to have purchased it by Warre, must besides money, have cost the lives of many. After this Malcolme, King of Scots, came in kindnesse to visit King William at Glocester: but the King not vouchsafing so much as to see him, put him into so great an indignation, that returning home, he makes ready an Army, invades Northumberland, making great spoyle and getting great spoyles, but by Robert Mowbray, the Kings Lieute∣nant there, was taken in ambush, and together with his eldest sonne Edward, de∣feated and slaine. This King Malcolme was a most valiant Prince, as may appeare by an Act of his of an extraordinary straine; for hearing of a conspiracy plotted to murther him, whereof one was Authour, whose name is not recorded, he dissem∣bled the knowing it, till being abroad one day a hunting, he tooke the fellow a∣part from the company, and being alone, said unto him: Here now is a fit time and place, to doe that manfully, which you have intended to doe treacherously; draw your weapon, and if you kill me, none being present, you can incurre no danger: with which speech of the King, the fellow was so daunted, that present∣ly he fell downe at his feet, confessed his fault, humbly asked forgivenesse, and be∣ing granted him, was ever after serviceable and faithfull to him. The death of King Malcolme and his Sonne, was so grievous, and so grievously taken of Mar∣garet his Queene, the sister of Edgar Atheling, that she made it her Prayer, and had it granted, not to over-live them, and so, within three dayes after dyed: a wo∣man as full of vertues all her life, as at this time of sorrowes; whom yet I should Page  44 not breake order to mention, but for one pious Act of hers, in causing a most bar∣barous custome of Scotland to be abrogated, that when a man marryed, his Lord should lye the first night with his Bride. Which custome by her indevour was al∣tered to a payment in money.

After these troubles were ended in the North, a new trouble ariseth in the West; for now the Welsh men hearing of King Williams distractions, enter upon the En∣glish borders, making spoyle and havocke of men and Townes: whom King Wil∣liam went with an Army to encounter, but could doe no good upon them, till he was faine to returne to London, and provide him a stronger Army. About this time also Robert Mowbray Earle of Northumberland, by whom Malcolme King of Scots was in King Williams service formerly slaine, finding his service not reward∣ed as he expected, enters into Conspiracy against the King; but the King being informed of the practise, seiseth suddenly upon many of his Complces, and him∣selfe, after many devises and shifts for flight, is taken and put in prison, in the Ca∣stle of Windsor. After this, King William to take a further revenge of the Welsh, and to make an absolute conquest of that unquiet people, with a farre greater Army then ever before, enters Wales, and thinkes with new devices of Castles and Forts, utterly to subdue them, but they defending themselves, with their Woods, and Mountainous passages, tyre and weary out the King and his Army, so as he leaves the businesse to two Hughes, one, Earle of Salop, the other of Chester, who first invaded and tooke Anglesey, (their Island of refuge) where they used all kinde of cruelty, pulling out of eyes, and cutting off hands and noses: in prosecuting of which businesse, Hugh Earle of Salop was slaine, but Hugh Earle of Chester, en∣tred Wales, and in the end, with the slaughter of Rees, the last King of Wales, made an absolute Conquest of the Country. For after this, though they often rebelled, yet they were in a true subjection. And these for the most part, were all the trou∣bles of his Raigne: where we may observe, that none of them did ever overtake him, but still he met them, and from none of them he ever fled, but was still the pursuer, and yet so many as might well have taken away all the comfort of a Crowne, and have made him willing to change his Diadem for a paire of Beades, but that Ambition, though sometimes weary, yet never tyes.

His Exactions and Courses for raising of money.

IN the second yeare of his Raigne, Lanfranke Arch-bishop of Canterbury dyed, who had kept the kingdome and King in some good Order, but assoone as he was dead, the King, as though he were then got loose, ranged without reines, in all licentiousnesse: preying especially upon the Clergy, as amongst whom he found the richest Booties. When Bishoprickes or Abbeyes were vacant, it was familiar with him to seise them into his owne hands, as this of Lanfranke, he kept to his owne use foure yeares together, and longer would have kept it, if a sicknesse of his Body had not healed this disease of his minde: For finding himselfe in some hazard of death, he then conferred the Arch-bishopricke of Canterbury upon An∣selme, and the Bishopricke of Lincolne, upon Robert Bloet, two eminent men of that time; but assoone as hee was well againe, it repented him of that he had done, and was not quiet, till hee had drawne from the said Bloet, five thousand pounds, and from Anselme also good summes of money. For he re∣pented not more in time of sicknesse for the evill he had done in health, then being in health, he repented him of the good he had done in sicknesse; that it may in a manner be said, there was nothing made him sicke but health, and nothing made him be in health but sicknesse. But this preying upon the Clergy was growne into such a custome with him, that he kept in his hands at one time, three Bishoprickes, Canterbury, Winchester, and Salisbury; and twelve Abbeys; all which he let out to Farme, and received the profits: and from this King, the use is said to have risen first in England, that the Kings succeeding had the Temporalties of Bishops Sees, as long as they remained voyd. Having agreed to pay the King of France a great Page  45 summe of money, he raised it in this manner; He caused twenty thousand men to be levied, under pretence for his warres in Normandy; but when they were ready to be shipped, it was signified to them from the King, that whosoever would pay tenne shillings towards the levying of Souldiers in Normandy, should be excused from going, and stay at home; which was so plausible an offer to the Army, that scarce a man was found that accepted not the condition. When Duke Robert went into the Holy Land he pawned his Dtchy of Normandy to his Brother King Wil∣liam for 6666. pounds, or as some write, for 12600. which money King William tooke up part by a grievous Imposition: so that Bishops melted their Plate, and the Temporall Lords spoyled their Tenants for the payment thereof: and part by loane; but chiefely of Religious persons. He sold the Abbey of Glastenbury to Thurstan for five hundred pounds; and when he built Westminster Hall, he made that an oc∣casion to lay a heavie taxe upon the people, who grudged at it, as done of pur∣pose. He usually sold all Spirituall preferments, to them would give most; and tooke Fines of Priests for Fornication: as also he tooke money of Jewes, to cause such of them as were converted, to renounce Christianity, and returne to Judaisme, as making more benefit by their Unbeliefe then by their Conversion. He caused divers of the Nobility to pay grievous Fines for transgressing his Laws, though the fault were never so small. He set forth a Proclamation that none should goe out of the Realme without his Licence, by which he drew much money from many; for either they must tarry at home and live discontented, or else content him for giving them leave to goe abroad. And from thence the Custome or Law of Ne exeas Reg∣no, seemes to have taken its beginning: for Precedents of servitude are sure to live, where Precedents of Liberty are commonly still-borne. These were his wayes for raising of money, wherein Promoters and Informers were his darling servants; and the most officious of all was Ralph Bishop of Durham, of whom he would often say, there was not such another man in the world to serve a Kings turne. And yet he was not so greedy of lucre but that he did some Acts that may serve for ex∣amples: as one time, an Abbey being vacant, two Monkes of the Covent came suiters to him for the place, offering great summes, and each of them out-bidding the other; whereupon the King looking about, and espying another Monk stan∣ding not farre off, asked him what he would give for the place? Who answering, he neither had any thing to give, nor would give any thing if he had it: Well (said the King) thou hast spoken honestly, thou art fitter to be Abbot then either of these; and so bestowed the place upon him gratis.

Of his Magnanimity.

VVOrd was brought him as he sate at dinner, that his City of Mans in Nor∣mandy was besieged, and in great danger to be taken, if not presently re∣lieved: whereupon the King asked which way Mans lay; and then caused Masons presently to take downe the Wall, to make him passage the next way, and so rode instantly towards the Sea. His Lords about him, advising him to stay till his peo∣ple were ready: No (saith he) but such as love me I know will follow me. And being come on Shipboard, and the weather growing very tempestuous, he was advised by the Master of his Ship, to stay for some calmer season: No (saith he) Feare nothing, I never yet heard of any King that was drowned. And thereby comming to Mansnexpected, he presently dispersed the Besiegers, and tooke Helias Count de la Flesche, who had been Authour of the tumult, Prisoner; who vaun∣ting to the King, and saying, Now indeed you have taken me by a wile; but if I were at liberty againe, you should finde me to doe other manner of feats: at which the King laughing; Well then (saith he) go your wayes and doe your worst, and let us see what feats you will do. Being reconciled to his Brother Robert, he assisted him to recover the Fort of Mount Saint Michael, which their Brother Henry did forcibly hold in Normandy: during which siege, straggling one time alone upon the shoare, he was set upon by three horsmen, who assaulted him so fiercely, that they Page  46 drove him from his saddle, and his saddle from his horse; but he taking up his saddle, and withall drawing out his sword, defended himselfe till rescue came: and being afterward blamed for being so obstinate to save his saddle, he answered: It would have angred me at the very heart, that the knaves should have bragged they had wonne the saddle from me.

Of his justnesse in keeping his word.

THis vertue specially was commended in him, and he would often say, that even God himselfe was obliged by his word. But if we observe the course of his life, we shall finde that howsoever he might keepe his word in small matters, yet cer∣tainly not in great For he kept not his word with his Brother Robert, to whom he promised to leave the Kingdome of England after his decease, but performed it not. Nor he kept not his word with his subjects, for in the rebellion of the Nor∣man Lords, he promised the English, if they would now stick to him, they should have their ancient Lawes restored, and be allowed liberty to hunt in his Forests; which promise he either kept not at all, or at least soone brake. Nor he kept not his word with God himselfe; for being sick at Glocester, and in some hazard of his life, he made a solemne vow, that if he recovered, he would leade a new life, and give over all his disorderly courses: but being recovered, he grew more disor∣derly then he was before that if denomination be made from the greatest actions, it cannot be truly said that he was just of his word; but such is the priviledge of Princes over their subjects, that if they make a promise it must be beleeved; and if they breake it, it must not be questioned.

Of his Incontinencie.

MUch is spoken of his lascivious life in generall, but nothing in particular: for neither is mentioned any violence he ever offered to any; nor is any woman named to have beene his Concubine, and Princes Concubines are seldome con∣cealed. It is true he was never married, and of a strong constitution of body, and so probable he might be inclining to that vice; but probabilities are not alwayes con∣cluding, and therfore whether it be a true accusation, or but a slander, it may well be doubted: only one base son of his is spoken of, called Bertrannus, whom he advanced in honour, and matched in a Noble Family. But why should we more look for par∣ticulars of his Incontinency, then of his Prodigality? for he was taxed no lesse for being Prodigall, then for being Incontinent; and yet of his Prodigality there is not so much as one instance recorded, unlesse we take this for an instance; that when his Chamberlaine brought him a paire of hose, which because they were new, he asked what they cost? And being told they cost three shillings, in a great chafe he threw them away; asking him, If he thought a paire of hose of three shillings, to be fit for a King to weare? Get thee gone (saith he) and let me have a paire of a Marke. His Chamberlaine went, and bringng him another paire scarce so good as the former, and telling him they cost a Marke; I marry (saith the King) these are something like, and was better satisfied with hearing what they cost, then with seeing what they were worth: and yet was this no imputation to his wisdome, for to say the truth, it is no defect of wisdome in a King to be igno∣rant what his cloaths are worth.

Of his wavering in Religion.

HE appointed a disputation to be held betweene Christians and Jewes, and be∣fore the day came, the Jewes brought the King a Present, to the end they might have an indifferent hearing; The King took the Present, encouraging them to quit themselves like men: and swore by Saint Lukes face (his usuall oath) that if they prevailed in Disputation, he would himselfe turne Jew, and be of their Reli∣gion. Page  47 A young Jew on a time was converted to the Christian Faith, whose Fa∣ther being much troubled at it, presented the King sixty Markes, intreating him to make his sonne to returne to his Judaisme; whereupon the King sent for his sonne, commanding him without more adoe to returne to the Religion of his Nation. But the young man answered, he wondred his Majesty would use such words; for be∣ing a Christian, he should rather perswade him to Christianity: with which an∣swer the King was so confounded, that he commanded the yog man to get hm out of his sight. But his Father finding the King could doe no good upon his sonne, required his money againe; Nay (saith the King) I have taken paines enough for it, and yet that you may see how kindly I will deale, you shall have one halfe; and the other halfe you cannot in conscience deny me. There were fifty Gentle∣men accused for hunting and killing the Kings Deere, which they denied, and were therefore condemned to the triall of fire; which by Gods mercifull judgement they passed through untouched: the King hearing it, and deceived of the confiscation he expected, is said in a great chafe to say; How happens this? Is God a just Judge in suffering it? Now a murraine take him that beleeves it. It seemes also he doubted of many points of Religion, then in credit. For he would often protet, that he beleeved not that Saints could profit any man in Gods sight, and therefore neither would he, nor any other that were wise (as he affirmed) make Intercession either to Peter, or to any other for helpe.

Affaires of the Church in his time.

THe King claimed the Investiture of Bishops to be his right, and forbad Ap∣peales and Intercourse to Rome; (for no Appeales had ever beene used till An∣selme in this Kings Reigne appealed to the Pope) upon whose complaint the Pope was about to Excommunicate the King, but having a little before Excommunica∣ted the Emperour Henry the fourth (the first Christian Prince with Soveraigne authorty, that was ever Excommunicate by any Pope) he forbore at that time to doe it, lest by making Excommunication common, he should make it be slighted. At this time great contention arose betweene the King and the Arch-Bishop An∣selme: and Anslme not yeelding to the King in any point prejudiciall to the Popes authority; nor the King yeelding to Anselme in any point prejudiciall to his owne Prerogative; (which were points indeed Incompatible) the contention continued long and hot, and the hotter, because there were at that time two Popes on foote at once: one elected by the Conclave, called Urbanus the second; another set up by the Emperour, called Clement the third: for Anselme held with Urban, the King with Clement: and thus not agreeing in a third, it was impossible they should agree be∣tween themselves; and this contention, though palliated with pretentions, somtimes of one side, sometimes of another, yet brake out againe, and was renewed both in this Kings time, and in the times of many Kings after. Anselme often threathing his going to Rome, the King told him plainely he would not thrust him out of the Realme, but if he would goe without his leave, he would then keepe him out du∣ring his pleasure; and besides, he should carry nothing out of the Realme wih him: yet Anselme ventured it, and the King performed it; for William Warlewast was sent to rifle him in his passage at Sea of all he had, neither was he suffered to returne as long as the King lived; during all which time, the King tooke the profits of his Archbishoprick to his owne use. It may not be amisse to shew a passage here con∣cerning the first cause of contention betweene the King and Anselme, which some say was this; The King required a thousand Markes of him for having preferred him to that See: which Anselme refused to give, as judging it no lesse Simony to give after the preferment then before: but yet afterward offering five hundred pounds, the King refused to accept it, as being worth (he said) five times as much: whereupon Anselme told him, Your Grace may have me, and all that is mine, to serve your turne in a friendly manner; but in the way of servitude and bondage, you shall never have me nor mine: Which words so angred the King, that they Page  48 could never after be reconciled. In this Kings Reigne Pope Urbane exhorted all Christian Princes to joyne together for recovery of Ierusalem and the Holy Land: and by the solliciting of Peter an Hermite, there assembled for that enterprise, un∣der the conduct of Godefry of Bulloigne, to the number of three hundred thou∣sand men; amongst whom was Robert Duke of Normandy, who so valiantly carried himselfe in the action, that after Ierusalem was won, the Kingdome of it (as some write) was offered to him: but he looking more after the Kingdome of England, and therefore refusing it; It is observed he never prospered all his life after. In this Kings Reigne, although he had no command in Ireland, yet their Bishop of Dublin was sent over to Anselme Arch-bishop of Canterbury, to be Consecrated by him; and the Citizens of Waterford also desiring to have a Bishop, procured Murcherdach, King of Ireland, to write to Anselme, to give his consent. Also in this Kings dayes, the Pope forbad the marriage of Priests.

Workes of piety of this King, or by other in his time.

THis King gave to the Monkes of Southwarke, the Church of Saint Saviour of Bemondsey, and Bermondsey it selfe; he also Founded at Yorke the Hospitall of Saint Leonards: He gave the Church of Saint Peter in the City of Bathe to be a Bishops See. Hugh Earle of Chester, in this Kings dayes builded the Abbey of Chester: Oswald Bishop of Salisbury, Founded the Cathedrall Church of Salisbury: Remigius Bishop of Dorchester, to the end his Bishoprick might be removed to Lin∣colne; beganne to build the Cathedrall Church of Lincolne; and Lanfrank Arch-Bishop of Canterbury builded two Hospitals without the City; the one of Saint Iohn, the other at Harbaldowne, repaired Christs Church, and caused five and twen∣ty Manors to be restored to that See, which had unjustly beene withholden. He re∣paired also the Abbey of Saint Albans, and the Church of Rochester, where for foure secular Priests, he placed to the number of fifty Monkes. In the sixth yeare of this Kings Reigne, William Warren the first Earle of Surrey, and Gundred his wife, Founded the Abbey of Lewis in Sussex: and Warren Earle of Shrewsbury built two Abbeys, one in the Suburbs of Shrewsbury, the other at Wenlock. In his twelfth yeare, Robert Losaunge, Bishop of Thetford, removed his See from Thetford to Norwich, and founded there a faire Monastery.

His buildings and Structures.

THis King enlarged the Tower of London, and compassed it with new wals: he also built the great Hall at Westminster, being 270. foote in length, and 74. in breadth; but thinking it too little, he intended to have built another Hall which should have stretched from the Thames to the Kings streete. He repaired the City and Castle of Carlile, which had beene wasted by the Danes two hundred yeares before, and because it had but few Inhabitants, he brought a Colony thither out of the Southerne parts. He finished New-Castle upon Tyne, and many other Ca∣stles he erected or repaired upon the borders of Scotland; many also upon the fron∣tires, and within the very breast of Wales.

Casualties happening in his Reigne.

IN the fourth yeare of his Reigne, on Saint Lukes day, above six hundred houses in London were throwne downe with tempest; and the roofe of Saint Mary Bow Church in Cheape, was so raised, that in the fall six of the beames being 27. foote long, were driven so deepe into the ground: (the streets being not then paved with stone) that not above foure foote remained in sight, and yet stood in such ranke and order as the workmen had placed them upon the Church. Also in this Kings Reigne all the Lands in Kent, sometimes belonging to Earle Godwin, were by breaking in of the Sea covered with Sands, and are called Godwins Sands to this day. In his Page  49 eleventh yeare, at a Towne called Finchamstead in the County of Barkshire, a Well cast out bloud, as before it had done water: and after by the space of fifteene dayes, great flames of fire were seene in sundry places and at sundry times.

Of his Personage and Condition.

HE was but meane of stature, thick and square bodied, his belly swelling some∣what round, his face was red, his haie deepe yellow, whereof he was called Rufus; his forehead foure square like a window; his eyes spotted, and not one like another; his speech unpleasant, and not easily uttered, specially when he was mo∣ved with anger. Concerning the qualities of his minde, they may best be knowne by looking upon the actions of his life; in which we shall finde he was never more assured, then when he was least sure, never lesse dejected, then when in most extre∣mity; being like a Cube, that which way soever he fell, he was still upon his bot∣tome. For his delights to passe the time, there was none in more request with him then hunting, a delight hereditary to him, which was the cause that as his Father had begunne the great new Forest, so he enlarged it to a farre greater extent. Other delights of his we finde not any, unlesse we shall reckon his warres for delights: for though they were oftentimes forced upon him, when he could not avoyd them; yet sometimes he entred into them when he needed not, but for his pleasure. And in generall, it may be said that one of his greatest vertues, was that which is one of the greatest vertues, Magnanimity; and his worst vice, was that which was the worst of vices, Irreligion.

Presages that preceded his Death.

AT Finchamstead in Barkshire, neare unto Abington, a spring cast up liquor for the space of fifteene dayes, in substance and colour like to bloud. The night be∣fore the King was kild, a certaine Monk dream'd, that he saw the King gnaw the Image of Christ crucified with his teeth; and that as he was about to bite away the legges of the same Image, Christ with his feete spurned him downe to the ground: and that as he lay on the earth, there came out of his mouth a flame of fire, with abundance of smoake. This being related to the King by Robert Fits Mam∣mon, he made a jest of it, saying; This Monke would faine have something for his Dreame: Goe, give him a hundred shillings; but bid him looke that he dreame more auspitious Dreames hereafter. Also the same night, the King himselfe dream'd that the veines of his armes were broken, and that the bloud issued out in great a∣bundance: and many other like passages there were, by which it seemes he had friends somewhere, as well as Iulius Caesar, that did all they could to give him war∣ning: but that as Caesars, so his Malus Genius would not suffer him to take it.

Of his Death and Buriall.

KIng William having kept his Christmas at Glocester, his Easter at Winchester, his Whitsontide at Westminster, notwithstanding forewarned by many signes of some great dysaster towards him, would needs the day after Lammas, goe a hunting in the New Forest; yet something resenting the many presages, he stayed within all the forenoone: about dinner time, an Artificer came and brought him sixe Crosse-bow Arrowes, very strong and sharpe; whereof foure he kept himselfe, and the other two he delivered to Sir Walter Tyrell, a Knight of Normandy his Bow-bearer; saying, Here Tyrell, take you two, for you know how to shoot them to purpose: and so having at dinner drunke more liberally then his custome, as it were in contempt of Presages, out he rides into the new Forest, where Sir Walter Tyrell shooting at a Deere, the arrow glanced against a tree, or as some write, gra∣zed upon the back of the Deere, and flying forward, hit the King upon the breast; with which he instantly fell downe dead. Thus it is delivered by a common con∣sent Page  50 of all; onely one Sugerius, a writer that lived at that time, and was a fami∣liar acquaintance of the said Tyrels; against the current of all Writers, affirmes that he had often heard the said Sir Walter sweare that he was not in the Forest with the King all that day. I have beene the longer upon this point, because a more pregnant example of Gods judgement remaines not any where upon Record. For not onely this King at this time, but before this, a brother of his named Richard, a young Prince of great hope; and also a Nephew of his, the sonne of his brother Robert, came all in this place to violent deaths: that although King William the Foun∣der of the Forest, escaped the punishment in his owne person, yet it was doubled and trebled upon him in his issue. Thus died King William Rufs, in he three and fortieth yeare of his age, and twelfth and some moneths of his Reigne. His body was drawne in a Colliers Cart with one Horse to the City of Winchester, where the day following it was buried in the Cathedrall Church of Saint Swithen, and was laid there in the Quire under a Marble stone, till afterward it was translated, and laid by King Canutus bones.

Men of Note i his time.

FOr men of valour, he must stand alone by himselfe: for men of learning, there was Lanfranke, a Lombard, but Bishop of Canterbury: also Robert a Lorayne, who Epitomized the Chronicle of Marianus Scotus: also Turgotus an English man, Deane of Durham, who wrote the Annals of his owne time, and divers other works: but especially Osmund Bishop of Salisbury, who composed the ordinary Of∣fice, or book of Prayer.

Page  51


Of his comming to the Crowne.

ALthough Henry came not to the Crowne, as his Brother Wil∣liam did, by the gift of his Father, yet he came to it by the Prophesie of his Father: For, when his Father made his Will, and divided all his Estate in Land be∣tweene his two eldest Sonnes, giving to Henry his youngest onely a portion in money, with which division he perceived him to be much discontented; he said unto him, Content thy selfe Harry, for the time will come, that thy turne shall be served as well as theirs. And now the time was come that his prediction was accomplished; for on the fifth of August, in the yeare 1100. he was Crowned King of England, at Westminster, by Maurice Bishop of London, (as Deane of all the Bishops of England, and therefore might doe it with∣out any prejudice to the Arch-bishop of Canterbury, though he had beene present, who was indeed at this time in Exile.) But though it appeares fuisse in Fatis, to be decreed by the Divine Providence that it should be so, yet it would not have been so, if his owne endevours had not beene concurring. And therefore being in the New Forest, when his Brother King William was killed, he never stayed to com∣plement the Dysaster, but rode presently to Winchester, and there, not without some opposition of the keepers, seisd upon his Brothers Treasure, as knowing treasure to be the meanes for getting of Friends, and Friends the meanes for getting the Crowne; and having now gotten the first meanes, he made use of it for the scond, and both of them together brought him to this he is. Yet withall there were circumstances in his owne Person that conduced to it; his Brother was borne, when their Father was but a Duke, he, when he was a King; Robert was a For∣rainer, being borne in Normandy, himselfe a Native, borne at Selby in Yorkeshire; and it was not the least circumstance, that he was called Beauclerke, as to say, a good Scholar, having beene bred in Cambridge; not perhaps that his learning was so great, but that it was great, either in respect of that age, which had but little; or in respect of his Brothers, who had none at all: and the People having beene oppressed before, by the ill Government of two Kings, that were illiterate; could not chuse but be glad to come under the Government of a King hat was Learned. And though his Brother Robert, as being the Elder, had right unto it, yet he as out of sight was out of minde, and perhaps neglected, as being himselfe negligent; withall it was given out, that he was chosen King of Hierusalem, and therefore no looking for him to come home; and to give force to all these reasons, Henry New∣borough Earle of Warwicke was a principall urtherer.

Page  52

His course for establishing himselfe in the Kingdome.

IT is a hard matter to keepe that safely, which is unjustly gotten; and therefore he tooke all possible care to overcome that hardnesse: which he effected by these meanes; First, he called Anselme Arch-bishop of Canterbury home from Exile; placed William Gyfford a learned man, in the Bishopricke of Winchester; and Mona∣steries that had beene long vacant, he furnished with good Abbots. And because it is no lesse pleasing to the People, to have bad instruments punished, then the good to be advanced, he cast Ralph Bishop of Durham, (a principall cause of their late oppressions) into prison: then mitigated the rigour of the new Lawes; and pro∣mised restitution of the old. And that there might be no abuse in measures, he or∣dained a measure, made by the length of his owne Arme, which is called a Yard. He restored to his Subjects the use of Lights and Fire in the night, which before had beene forbidden after eight a clocke at night. He acquited the People from the Taxe of Danegelt, and from all other unjust payments, which had beene imposed upon them by the two former Kings. He gave free liberty to the Nobility and Gentry of the Realme, to inclose Parkes for Deere, and Warrens for Coneyes; and such like game. And because he knew Scotland might be an ill Neighbour to him, if not tyed by some Bond, and none so sure as the Bond of Alliance, he therefore takes Matild sister of the present King Edgar to be his Wife.

His Troubles during his Raigne.

RAlph Bishop of Durham, the late King Williams great Instrument for Exactions, that had by this King beene committed to the Tower, made an escape, and pas∣sing over to Duke Robert in Normandy; incenseth him, not to suffer himselfe to be baffled by a younger Brother; as for his Brother William, there was some rea∣son, because his Father had given him the Kingdome by his Will, but what could Henry pretend, who had his Portion given him in money? Besides, it was an a∣greement with his Brother William, with consent of all the Lords of the Relme, that the Surviver of them should succeed. With such like instigations, and with∣all assuring him, there were many in England would take his part; he easily per∣swaded the Duke to that, from which he could hardly have disswaded him; who thereupon with a convenient Army, puts to Sea, and lands at Portsmouth, while Henry waited for his comming about Hastings; and being landed there, much peo∣ple resorted to him, that it was like to have beene a bloody businesse; but by me∣diation of Friends, working upon the flexible nature of Duke Robert, it was brought at last to this agreement, that King Henry should pay to Duke Robert, three thousand markes yearely, and Duke Robert should succeed him in the kingdome, if he sur∣vived. And thus, this cloud, that threatned so great a storme, brought with it, ather Sunshine and faire weather: for now, to his possession of the Kingdome, there was added a right, and he might now justifie his being a King, without any scan∣dall or usurpation. After this, another little cloud arose, but was soone disper∣sed: For Robert de Belesme Earle of Shrewsbury, a rash young man of disposition, but more through discontentment, though discontented for nothing, but that ha∣ving a great Estate, he was not a King as well as some others, fortifyed the Towne of Shrewsbury, and the Castle of Bridgenorth, and got many Welshmen to assist him, but the King comming with a mighty Army, so terrifyed the Welsh, that they aban∣doned the Earle, and left him a prey to the King in his person, and more in his E∣state, for the King seised his Estate into his hands, but for his Person he onely ba∣nisht it the Realme. For as yet, the shedding of blood and putting to death, though for great Treasonable practises, was not much in use; Policy of State was not yet growne to that heighth of severity. The like attempt, and upon the like occasi∣on, was made by William Earle of Mortaigne in Normandy, and of Cornwall in Eng∣land, Unckle to the King, onely for denying him the Earledome of Kent, which because he could not obtaine, he entred into Treasonable practises, by which he Page  53 lost the Earledomes he had before. But these troubles were but as the labour of a Woman that is safely delivered; painefull for a time, but ending in joy: and indeed for the most part this King had the fortune to be a gainer by his losses.

After this, Duke Robert came in kindnesse into England, to visit his Brother Henry; where he was so well pleased with his entertainment, that in re∣quitall thereof, and to doe a favour to the Queene, that was his God-daughter; he released to King Henry, the three thousand markes, which he was yearely to pay him. But returning into Normandy, and considering better what he had done, he so repented him, that he spared not to give out, that his Brother had directly cou∣sened him. Which comming to King Henryes eare, so incensed him, that he pre∣sently sent over a mighty Army, which forraged the Country, and wonne many Townes and Cities, and soone after went over himselfe; where he so prevailed, that he left Duke Robert but onely Roan in all Normandy to put his head in, and this done, returnes into England. And now Duke Robert beginnes to be sensible of his owne weaknesse, and therefore comes over into England to try the u••ermost of his Brothers good nature; himselfe had sent him a Tunne of Wine to refresh him withall, when in a siege he was ready to perish for want of water: and it cannot be, but that gratefulnesse and naturall affection, meeting together, must needes worke something in the minde of a Brother. Thus resolved, he presents himselfe to the King, referring both his Dukedome and himselfe, and all differences and debates to his will and pleasure. But whether incensed with the scandalous words, Duke Robert had given out of him, or whether aspiring to joyne Normandy to England, as his Father had done before; King Henry scarce vouchsafed to heare him speake, at least vouchsafed not to make him any answer, but in a sullen man∣ner turned away, and so left him: which scornefull usage put the Duke into such indignation, that he resolved to set his whole state at stake, and either to redeeme his disgrace, or to forfeit his life. So returning into Normandy, he useth all his force in raising of Forces, but King Henry suspecting his intentions, and not using to give Insurrections time to ripen, came upon him so suddenly with a mighty Ar∣my, that he drew him to a battell before he was halfe ready to fight. Yet desire of revenge so animated the Duke, and the Duke his Souldiers, that never battell was more fiercely fought, and the Normans seemed at first to have the better, till King Henry shewing himselfe in the Army, put such courage into his Souldiers, that they quickly made good the advantage they had in number, and King Henry ob∣tained a compleate victory, both in slaughter of men, (of whom there wer slaine above ten thousand) and in taking of prisoners, (to the number of foure hun∣dred) amongst whom, besides divers other Great ones, as the Earle of Mortaigne, William Crispine, and William Ferreis, was Duke Robert himselfe, whom the King, (having first taken order for all things, in his new State of Normandy) brought over with him into England, and committed him to the Castle of Cardyffe in Wales, where he remained a prisoner till he dyed, used for a time with reasonable liberty for Recreation, till attempting to make an escpe, it was thought fit to put out his eyes; which though it encreased his misery, yet it shortned not his life, for he li∣ved many yeares after, in all, from the time of his first imprisonment, sixe and twenty. And thus this great Duke, who in his birth was the joy of Nature, in his life was the scorne of Fortune; and it is not unworthy the observing, that the English wonne Normandy, the very same day forty yeare, the Normans had wonne England. Such Revolutions of fortune there are in kingdomes, and so unstable is the state of all worldly Greatnesse.

And now is King Henry as great as ever his Father was, and as Greatnesse draws envy, as much envyed as ever his Father was; and as Envy makes Enemies, as much opposed as ever his Father was: for now Fulke Earle of Angio, and Baldwyne Earle of Flanders, upon small occasions, and Lewis the grosse King of France, upon none, but such as envy suggested, seeking to place William, Sonne to Duke Robert, in his Right to Normandy, assaulted the Kings Dominions, per∣haps to try whether Greatnesse had not made him unwieldy; but King Henry, to Page  54 shew that Greatnesse had made him more Active, went over into Normandy with a mighty Army, and at Nice encountred the French King, where a bloody Battell was fought, with exceeding valour on both sides, but at last King Henry repelled the French King, and recovered Nice, and after many other conflicts betweene them, with variety of Fortune, at lst the King made peace with the Earle of Angiou; confirmed by a marriage of the Earles Daughter with his Sonne William and upon this also the two Kings grow to a peace, in which William, Son to King Henry, being about seventeene yeares of age, was invested into the Dutchy of Normandy, doing homage for the same to the King of France: From whence it was afterward a Custome, that the King of Englands eldest Sonne (as long as Nor∣mandy remained in their hands) was made alwayes Duke of Normandy. After this, Charles Earle of Flanders, being slaine at Bruxels by a conspiracy of his owne people, and leaving no issue behind hm, Lewis King of France invested Wil∣liam, Sonne to Dke Robert, in the Earledome of Flanders, as descended from Eale Baldwyn, whose Daughter Maude was wife to King William the first, and Grandmother to this William: so as William now having gotten this steppe of ad∣vancment, seekes to goe on, and to recover Normandy, and was thereof, by as∣sist••ce of the King of France, in a faire possibility, when in a certaine light con∣lct, receiving a wound in his hand, the thread of his faire possibility was upon a suddaine cut off, and of that light wound, he shortly after dyed.

King Henry now in perfect peace abroad, was not without some little disquie∣tings at home, and marching thorow Powis-land in South Wales, to represse some Insurrections of the Welsh, he came to certaine Straights, where his maine Army could not passe, in which place the King was smitten with an Arrow full upon the breast, whereat he swore by our Lords death (his usuall Oath) that it was no Welsh arme, had shot that Arrow, yet in this distesse, for a thousand head of Cat∣tell, he had the passage left open, and came safely off. And these were his trou∣bles of Armes, both at home and abroad, during all his Raigne.

His Taxations and wayes for raising of money.

TOwards the marriage of his Daughter Maude with the Emperour, he obtained at his first Parliament at Salisbury, three shillings upon every Hide of Land, throughout the kingdome; which was afterward drawne to a custome, to receive ayde from the Subjects, whensoever the King gave his eldest Daughter in marri∣age. Besides this he had no more in all his Raigne, but onely one supply for his Warres in France; but he kept Bishoprickes and Abbeyes voyd in his hands, and that of Canterbury five yeares together. By an Act of Parliament, or rather by a Synod of Bishops holden at London, he was authorised to punish marriage, and incontinency of Priests; which the Bishops afterwards repented, for he suffered Priests to have Wives for Fines, or rather tooke Fines of them whether they had wives or no, bcause they might have them if they would. Punishments which before his time were mutilation of Member, he made Pecuniary. And the Pro∣visions of his house, which were used to be paid in kind, were in his time rated at certaine prizes, and received in money. By this Chapter and the next before, it appeares there were in this Kings dayes, but few troubles at home, nor but few Taxations; whereo the one may be thought to be cause of the other, the first per∣haps of the second, but certainely the second of the first.

Lawes first instituted in his tme.

HE first instituted the forme of the High Court of Parliament: for before his time, onely certaine of the Nobility, and Prelates of the Realme were called to consultation, about the most important affaires of State, but he caused the Com∣mons also to be assembled, by Knights and Burgesses of their owne appointment, and made the Court to consist of three parts, the Nobility, the Clergy, and the Page  55 Common people, representing the whole body of the Realme, and appointed them to sit in severall Chambers, the King, the Bishops, and Lords of the Realme in one Chamber, and the Commons in another, to conferre together by them∣elves. Other Orders of that Court he Ordained, as they are in use at this day. The first Councell of this sort was held at Salisbury, on the 19. day of Aprill, in the 16. yeare of his Raigne. He forbad the wearing of long haire; which at that time was frequent, after the manner of the French. He commanded Robbers upon the High way, to be hanged without redemption: of whom a famous one at that time was one Dunne, and of him, the place where he most used, by reason of the great Woods thereabouts, is to this day called Dunstable, where the King built the Bo¦rough as now it standeth. Counterfeiters of money he punished with pulling out their eyes, or cutting off their privy members, a punishment both lesse then death, and greater.

Affaires of the Church in his time.

AT his first comming to the Crowne, he fobore his claime to the Investitres of Bishops, but after he had beene King some time, he claimed that both to invest Bishops, and to allow, or hinder appeales to Rome, belonged to him. In these, Anselme Archbishop of Canterbury opposed him, affirming that both of them belonged to the Pope. The contention at last was brought to the Pope, to whom King Henry sent William Warlewast, elect Bishop of Exceter, who saying to the Pope, that his Master would not, for the Crowne of his Realme, lose the Autho∣rity of Investing his Prelates, the Pope started up and answered, Neither will I lose the disposing of Spirituall Promotions in England, for the Kings head that weareth the Crowne; before God (said he) I avow it. So the contention grew long and hot, and many messengers were sent to and fro about it, the conclusion was (which proved no conclusion) that the King should receive homage of Bishops elect; but should not Invest them by Staffe and Ring: to which the King said nohing for the present, but forbore not to doe it ever the lesse: for five yeares after the death of Anselme, Ralph Bishop of Rochester, was by the King made Arch-bishop of Can∣terbury, and notwithstanding all former Decrees, and Threatnings of the Pope, he received his Investiture of the King. About this time a Canon was made a∣gainst the Marriage of Priests, to which purpose Iohannes Cremensis, a Priest Cardinall, by the Kings licence came into England, and held a solemne Synod at Lon∣don, where inveighing sharpely against it, affirming it to be no better then profest Adultery, he was himselfe the night following, taken in bed with a common har∣lot. Even Anselme himselfe, the most earnest enforcer of single life, dyed not, it seemes, a Virgin, for else he would never in his Writings make such lamentation for the losse thereof. Anselme about this time dying, Rodulph succeeded in the See of Canterbury, and Thomas dying, Thurstine succeeded in the Arch-bishopricke of Yorke: betweene which two Prelates, there arose great contention; Rodulph would not consecrate Thurstine, unlesse he would professe obedience; Thurstine was con∣tent to embrace his benediction, but professe obedience he would not: In this con∣tention the King takes part with Rodulph, the Pope with Thurstine: after many passages in the businesse, upon the Popes threatning to Excommunicate the King, Thurstine entred upon his Bishopricke, and the King connived. In the tenth yeare of his Raigne, the Abbey of Ely was made a Bishops See, and Cambridgeshire was appointed for the Diocesse thereof, which because it belonged before to the Ju∣risdiction of Lincolne, the King gave the Bishop of Lincolne, in recompence there∣of, the Manor of Spalding. This King also created a Bishopricke at Carlile, and endowed it with many Honours. In his time, the Order of the Templars beganne, and in the 27. yeare of his Raigne, the Grey Fryers, by procurement of the King, came first into England, and had their first house builded at Canterbury. I may here have leave to tell two stories of Church-men, for refreshing of the Reader: Guy∣mond the Kings Chaplaine, observing that unworthy men for the most part were Page  56 advanced to the best dignities of the Church, as he celebrated Divine Service be∣fore him, and was to read thee words out of Saint Iames, [It rained not upon the Earth, III yeares and VI moneths] he read it thus; It rained not upon the Earth, one, one, one yeares, and five one moneths. The King observed his rea∣ding, and afterwards blamed him for it, but Guymond answered, that he did it of purpose, for that such Readers were soonest preferred by his Majesty. The King smiled, and in short time after, preerred him to the Government of Saint Frides∣wids in Oxford. The other is this, Thomas Arch-bishop of Yorke falling sicke, his Physitians told him, that nothing would doe him good, but to company with a woman; to whom he answered that the Remedy was worse then the diseae, and so dyed a Virgin. This King granted to the Church of Canterbury, and to Willi∣am and his successours, the Custody, and Constable-ship of the Castle of Rochester for ever.

Workes of Piety done by this King, or by others in his time.

THis King Founded and erected the Priory of Dunstable, the Abbey of Circester, the Abbey of Reading, and the Abbey of Shirborne. He also new builded the Castle of Windsor, with a Colledge there: He made also the Navigable River, be∣tweene Torkesay and Lincolne, a worke of great charge, but greater use. His Wife Queene Maude, passing over the River of Lue, was somewhat endangered, where∣upon she caused two stone-Bridges to be built, one at the head of the Towne of Stratford, the other over another Streame there, called Channel-bridge, and paved the way betweene them with Gravell. She gave also certaine Manors, and a Mill called Wyggon Mill, for repairing the same Bridges and Way. These were the first stone-Bridges that were made in England, and because they were Arched o∣ver like a bow, the Towne of Stratford was afterward called Bow. This Queene also founded the Priory of the Holy Trinity, now called Christs Church, within the East Gate of London called Aldgate; and an Hospitall of Saint Giles in the Field, without the West part of the City. In this Kings time Iordan Brifet Baron, Founded the House of Saint Iohn of Hierusalem, neare to Smithfield, in London, and gave 14. Acres of ground, lying in the field next to Clerkenwell, to build thereupon a House of Nunnes, wherein he with Myrioll his Wife were buryed in the Chap∣ter house. Robert Fitsham, who came out of Normandy with the Conquerour, Founded anew the Church of Teukesbury, and was there buryed. Herbert Bishop of Norwich, Founded the Cathedrall Church there. The Priory and Hospitall of Saint Bartholomew in Smithfield, was Founded by a Minstrell of the Kings, named Reior who became first Prior there. Before this time Smithfield was a Laystall of all ordure and filth, and the place where Felons were put to Execution. Hugh La∣cy Founded the Monastery of Saint Iohn at Lanthony, neare to Glocester. Iuga Bay∣nard, Lady of little Dunmow, Founded the Church there, and gave to maintaine it, halfe a Hide of Land. This Lady Iuga was late Wife to Baynard, that first built Baynards Castle in London. Eud the Kings Sewer, Founded the Monastery of Saint Iohn at Colchester, of blacke Chanons, and those were the first of that Order in England. Simon Earle of Northampton, and Mande his Wife, Founded the Monastery of Saint Andrew in Northhampton. In the seventh yeare of this Kings Raigne, the first Chanons entred into the Church of our Lady in South∣warke, called Saint Mary Overey; Founded by William Pountlarge knight, and Wil∣liam Dancyes, Normans. Robert the first Earle of Glocester, the Kings base Sonne, builded the Castles of Bristow and Cardyffe, with the Priory of Saint Iames in Bri∣stow: And his Sonne Earle William began the Abbey of Kensham. Geoffrey Clin∣ton, Treasurer, and Chamberlaine to the King, Founded the Priory at Kenelworth, of Regular Chanons. Henry Earle of Warwicke, and Margaret his Wife, Founded the Colledge of Saint Mar, in the Towne of Warwicke; and Roger de Belemond his Sonne, and Ellyne his wife, translated the same Colledge into the Castle of War∣wicke, in the yeare 1123. Roger Bishop of Salisbury built the Devises in Wiltshire; Page  57 the Castles also of Mamesbury and Shirborne. He repaired the Castle of Salisbury, and environed it with a wall; he also built the stately Church of Salisbury: desti∣ned to a longer life then any of his other workes. Ralph, Bishop of Durham, began to build the Castle of Norham, upon the banke of the River of Tweed. In the 32. yeare of this Kings Raigne, the Priory of Norton in Cheshire, was founded by one William, the sonne of Nychel, and the Abbey of Cumbermere in the same Shire. The Colledge of Secular Chanons also in the Castle of Leycester, and the Abbey with∣out the North gate of the same Towne, called Saint Mary de Prato. Also in this Kings Raigne, was Founded the Monastery of Plimpton in Devonshire, with the Cathedrall Church of Exetr; the Priory of Merton, the Hospitall of Kepar, the Pri∣ory of Oseney neare Oxford by Robert de Oylye Knight: and the Hospitall of Saint Crosse neare Winchester by Henry Blois Bishop there: also Robert Earle of Ferrers Founded the Abbey of Merivall: and indeed so many in his time were built, that one would thinke the Inhabitants of England to be all Carpenters and Masons, that were able to finish so many great buildings in so short a time as this Kings Raigne.

Casualties happening in his time.

IN this Kings dayes all the foure Elements were guilty of doing much mischiefe, but chiefely the water: For King Henry returning into England after his conquest of Normandy, left his sonne William with his sister Mary Countesse of Perche; Richard his sonne by a Concubine; the Earle of Chester with his wife Lucie, the Kings Neece by his sister Adela, and other Lords and Ladies, and passengers to the num∣ber of 180. to follow after him: who taking Shipping (and he best Ship the King had) whether by carelesnesse, or drunkennesse of the Saylours, were all drowned. The Prince indeed was got into the Ship-boate, and out of danger; but hearing the lamentable cries of his sister, compassion wrought so in him, that he turned a∣bout his boate to take her in, which over-charged with the multitude, over-turned, and they all perished: none escaped but onely one Saylour, who had been a Butcher, who by swimming all night upon the Mast, came safe to Land. An accident not more grievous then exemplary; for amongst other conclusions, from hence we may gather, that no state is so uncertaine as prosperity; no fall so sudden as into ad∣versity; and that the rule [He that stands, let him take heed he fall not] cannot al∣wayes be observed, because a man happens sometimes to fall before it is possible for him to take heed. Another great mischiefe was in this Kings dayes wrought by the water; for by the breaking in of the Sea, a great part of Flanders was drow∣ned: whereupon a great number of Flemmings being Suiters to King Henry for some place to inhabit; he assigned them a part in Wal•• neare the Sea, called Pembroke∣shire, where they have inhabited to this day: the King by this one action, working two good effects, both shewing compassion to distressed strangers, and putting a bri∣dle upon unquiet Natives. But the water had another way to doe mischiefe as much by defect, as this was by excesse; for upon the tenth of October, the River of Medway many miles together did so faile of water, that in the midst of the Channell, the smallest vessels could not passe: and the same day also in the Thames, betweene the Tower of London and the Bridge, men waded over on foote for the space of two dayes: also at another time the River of Trent at Notingham was dryed up a whole day. Now for the Earth, though naturally it be without motion, yet it moves some∣times when it is to do mischiefe, specially being assisted by the Aire; as in this Kings dayes, it moved with so great a violence that many buildings were shaken downe, and Malmesbery saith, that the house wherein he sate, was lifted up with a double remove, and at the third time setled againe in the proper place. Also in divers pla∣ces it yeelded forth a hideous noyse, and cast forth flames at certaine rifts many dayes together, which neither by water, nor by any other meanes could be sup∣pressed. But yet the active Element of Fire was busiest of all, for first Chichester with the principall Monastery was burnt downe to the ground: From West-cheapePage  58 in London to Aldgate, a long tract of buildings was consumed with fire: Worcester also and Rochester, even in the Kings presence; then Winchester, Bathe, Glocester, Lincolne, Peterborough, and other places, did also partake of this calamity, that there could be n charging the fire with any partiality: and to speake of one for∣raine casualty, because a strange one. In Lombardy this yeare was an Earthquake that continued forty dayes, and removed a Towne from the place where it stood, a great way off.

Of his Wives and Children.

AT his first comming to the Crowne, he married Matild or Maude, sister to Ed∣gar then King of Scotland, and daughter to Malcolme by Margaret the sister of Edgar Etheling. This Matild, if she were not a veyled Nun, she was at least brought up in a Nunnery, and thereby growne so averse from marriage, that when the mo∣tion was first made her to marry with King Henry, she utterly refused it, as resol∣ved though perhaps not vowed, to die a Virgin; till at last importuned, and even forced by the authority of her brother, she rather yeelded then consented; for she did it with so ill a will, that it is said she prayed, if ever she had issue by the marri∣age, that it might not prosper: and indeed it prospered but untowardly, as will be seene in the sequell. But though she made this imprecation before she knew what it was to be a Mother, yet when she came to be a Mother, she shewed her selfe no lesse loving and tender of her children, then loyall and obsequious to her husband. And to make amends for this seeming impiety towards her children, there is a story related of her reall piety towards the poor: for a brother of hers comming one mor∣ning to visit her in her chamber, found her sitting amongst a company of Lazar peo∣ple, washing and dressing their ulcers and sores; and then kissing them afterward when she had done: who wondring at it, & saying to her, How could she think the King should like to kisse that mouth, which had kissed such filthy ulcerous people? she answered; she had a greater King to kisse, who she knew would like her never the worse for it. By this Queen Matild, King Henry, according to some Writers, had foure children; but as the received opinon is, onely two, a sonne named William, and a daughter called Mawde; of whom the sonne at foureteene yeares old had fealty sworne to him by the Nobility of Shrewsbury: at seventeene married the daughter of Flke Earle of Anjou: and at eighteene was unfortunately drowned, as hath beene shewed. The daughter lived to be an Empresse, and afterwards a Dutchesse; but could never come to be a Queene, though borne to a Kingdome; as shall be shewed hereafter. She survived her second husband seventeene yeares, living a Widow, and at Ran in Normandy died, and was buried there in the Ab∣bey of Bec; though there be Tradition that she was buried at Reading, in the Ab∣bey there beside her Father: but t appeares to have beene a custome in those dayes, for great personages to have their Monuments erected in divers places. After the death of this Queene Matild, who died at Westminster, in the eighteenth yeare of his Raigne, King Henry married Adeza, the daughter of Godfry Duke of Lor∣raine; who though she were a beautiful and accomplisht Lady, yet had he never any isse by her. When she was to be Crowned, Ralph Arch-bishop of Canter∣bury, who was to doe the office, came to King Henry, sitting Crowned in his chaire of State, asking him who had set the Crowne upon his head? the King an∣swering, he had now forgotten, it was so long since. Well (said the Arch-bishop) whosoever did it, did me wrong, to whom it belonged; and as long as you hold it thus, I will doe no office at this Coronation. Then (saith the King) doe what you thinke good: whereupon the Arch-bishop tooke the Crowne off from the Kings head; and after, at the peoples intreaty, set it on againe, and then proceeded to Crowne the Queene. By Concubines King Henry had many children; it is said seven sonnes, and as many daughters: of whom, some perished in the great Ship-wrack; of the rest, two of the sonnes, Reynold and Robert, were made Earles: Rey∣nold of Cornwall, Robert of Glocester, and was a great assister of his sister Mawde, in Page  59 her troubles with King Stephen, who after many acts of valour performed by him, in the twelfth yeare of King Stephen, died, and was buried at Bristow. The daughters were all married to Princes and Noble men of England and France, from whom are descended many worthy Families: particularly one of those daughters by Ane C••∣bet, was married to Fits-herbert, Lord Chamberlaine to the King from which Fits-erbert, our Family (absit ividia verbo) is by Females descended; passing by the naes of Cummin, Chenduit, Brimpton, Stokes, Foxcote, Dyneley, and so to Bker.

Of his Incontinency.

OF this enough hath beene said, in saying he had so many children basely be∣gotten: but if comparison be mad betweene his brother ufus and him, it may be said, that howsoever they might be equall in loosenesse of life; yet in that loosenesse, William Rufus was the baser, and King Henry the more Noble; for King Henry had certaine selected Concubines, to whom he kept hmselfe constant; where King William tooke onely such as he found: constant to the pleasure, but not to the persons.

His course for establishing the succession in Mawde and her issue.

HE married his onely daughter Mawde, being but sixe yeares old, to the Empe∣rour Heny the fourth; but he leaving her a Widow without issue he married her againe to G••ffrey Plantagenet, sonne to Fulke Duke of Anjo: not the greatest Prince that was a Suitour for her; but the fittest Prince for King Henries turne: for Anjou was neighbouring upon Normandy, a great security to it, if a friend; and as great a danger, if an enemy. And having thus placed her in marri•••, h now considers how to establish her succession in the Crowne of England whereuon he cals his Nobility together, and amongst them Dvid King oScots, and causeth them to give their Oaths of Allegeance to her and her issue: and a thinking e could never mae her succession ure enough, he causeth his Lords the yeare ••ter againe to tak the like Oath, and after that a third time also; as conceiving that being doubled and trebled, it would make the tye of Allegeance the stronger: wherein nothing pleased him so much, as that Stephen, Earle of loi, was the first man that tooke the Oath, because he was knowne to be, at least known he might be, a Pretender. But the King should have considered that Nll fides Regi and therefore no Oath, though never so often iterated, sufficient to warrant loyalty in persons so deeply interessed, as Stephen was: yet providence could doe no more, and the King was well satisfied with it; especially when hee saw his daughter a mother of two sonnes: for this, though it gave him not assuance, yet it gae him assured hope to have the Crowne perpetuated in his Posteity.

Of Ireland in his time.

THe King of England as yet had nothing to doe with Ireland, the 〈◊〉 was governed by its owne Kings: and the people of both Nations〈◊〉 they were neghbours, yet divided by a rough Sea, but little ••quaited; but now beganne entercourse to be more frequented: and Murc•••d••h, ch••fe King of the Irish, bore such awfull respect to King Henry, that he would doe nothing but by his counsell, and with his good liking.

Whom King Henry used as his Vicegerent in his absence.

HE was absent sometimes in Normandy, three or foure yeares together; during which times, he committed commonly the care of the Realme to Roger Bi∣shop of alisbury, a politick Prelate; and one as fit to be the second in government, as King Henry to be the first.

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His pers•••ge ad conditions.

HE was a person tall and strong, •••ad breasted, his limbes well kni, and fully furnished with lesh; his face well fshioned, his colour cleare, his eyes large and faire, his eye-browes large and thick, his hair black, and omewhat thin•• to∣wards his forehead; his countenance pleasan, specially when h was disposed to mirth. A private man, vilified, and thought to have but little in him: but come to the Crowne, never any man shewed more excellent abilities: so true is the say∣ing, Magistratus indicat virum. His naturall affection in a direct line was strong; in an oblique, but weake; for no man ever loved children more, no a brother l•••e. Though a King in act, yet he alwayes aced not a King; but in ba•••ls some••ms the part of a common Souldier, though with more then common valous at a ba∣tell in France, where he so farre hazarded himselfe, that though he lost not his life, yet he lost his bloud.

Of his death and buriall.

A Discontent of minde upon some differences between him and his sonne in law, the Earle of Anjo, brought upon him a distemper, which encreased by eating, against his Physitins advise, of a Lmprey; a meate alwayes pl••sng 〈◊〉 him but never agreeing with him; cast him into a ••aver, which in few aye put a p••id to his life: So ceraine it is, that one intemperate action is eno••h to overthrow the temperance of a whole life; as of this King Henry it is said th•• he seldome did ea but when he was hungry, never did drink but when he was thirst yet this but one yeelding to his sensuall appetite, made hm forfe•• all benefit of his former abstinence: though some write he too•• his d••th by the fll off his hrs. He died upon the first of D••ember at night, in he yere 1135. when he had Raigned five and thirty yeares, lived threescore and seven. His bowels, braines, and eyes, were buied at Roan in Nomandy where he died: the rest of i body was stuffed with Salt, wrapped in Oxe hides, and brought over in••England, and with honorable Exequies, buried in the Monastery of eding which himselfe had Founded. His Physitin that ooke out his braines, with the intolerable stinch shortly after died. In this King Henry ended the line of the Nrmans, as touching the Heies Males; and then cme in the Frech, by the title of Heires generall.

Men of nte in his time.

MEn of learning in his time were many first, Stephen Harding a Benedictine Monke, who was Founder of the Cistercian Orde•• Then Anselme, Arch-bi∣shop of C••terbury, who beides his activenesse in matters of State, writ many great and learned bookes. Then Waltr Cl•••, Arch-deacon of Oxford, who delivered a History written in the British tongue, from Brute to Cadwallader, to Geoffry of Mon∣•••••h to translat, and added forty yeares of his owne ime. Also 〈◊〉 a Mon of W••cster, who writ D rebs Gestis Anglorum. Also Edmrs, a M••k of C••terbury, who ••sides othr w••ks, writ the History of his owne tme, under the two Willi••s and H•••y the first.

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AFter the decease of King Henry, presently steps upon the Stage of Royalty, Stephen Earle of Boleyne, Sonne to Stephen Earle of loys, by Adela, Daughter of King William the Conq•••our; and though there were two other before him, Made the Em∣presse, and Theobald his elder Brother, She in a substantiall right, He in a colourable, yet taking advantage of being Pri••• Occ∣pans, the first Invader, (as being quickly here after King Henries death, where the other stayed lingring about other Affires) he solicits all the Or∣ders o the Realme, Bishops, and Lords, and People, to receive him for their So∣verine: wherein besides his owne large promises, what great matters he would do for them all, he had the assistance also of Henry his Brother, Bishop of Winchestrnd the Popes Legate, and of Roger, Bishop of Salisbury, his great friend: (〈◊〉 the most powerfull men at that time in the State) who partly by force of Reasons, but more indeed by force then Reasons, procure the State to accept him for their King; and so upon Saint Stephns day, in Anno 1135. he was Crowned at Westminster, in presence of but three Bishops, few of the Nobility, and not one Abbot, by Willi∣am Arch-bishop of Canterbury, with great solemnity. That which put scruple in mens minds, and made them averse at first, from consenting to Stephe, was the Oath they had taken to receive King Henries Daugh••r Maude to be their Qeen, after his decease; but the weight of this scruple was something abated, when it was urged, that no Precedent could be shewed, that ever the Crowne had beene set upon a Womans head. And Roger, Bishop of Salisbury, brought another Reason, be∣cause they had taken that Oath but upon condition, that the King shoul not marry he out of the Realme without their consents, and the King having brokn the con∣dition, was just cause to nullifie their Obligation: to which was added, th•• the Oath having beene exacted by Authority, which is a ind of forcing, it might have the Plea of Per mins, and therefore void. And yet more then all these, Hgh Bigt, sometime Stew••d to King Henry, immediately after his decease, came o∣ve into England, and tooke a voluntary Oath before divers Lords of the Land, that he was present a little before King Henries death, when he adopted and chose his Nephew Stephen to be his Successour, because his Daughter M••d had gre∣vously at that tim displeased him. But howsoever their breach of Oath was thus palliaed; it is certaine that many of them, as well Bishops as other Lords, came afterward to an evill end at least o many calamities before their end.

VVhat course he tooke to establish himselfe in the Kingdome.

IT is a true saying, 〈◊〉 rebs opti•• servat•• Imperium, quibu p••atur; and this was Stephens course, he got the kingdome by Proises, and he establisht it by Page  62 Performances; he pleased the People with easing them of Taxes and Impositions; He pleased the Clergy with forbearing to keepe Bishoprickes and Abbeyes Va∣cant, and with exempting them from the Authority of the Temporall Magistrate; He pleased the Nobility with allowing them to build Castle upon their owne Lands; He pleased the Gen••y with giving them liberty to hunt the Kings Deere in their owne Woods; and besides with advancing many of them in Honours: and for his Brother Theobald, who being the elder, was before him in pretence to the Crowne, he pleased him with a grant to pay him two thousand Markes a yeare; and then to strengthen himselfe abroad no lesse then at home, he marryed his Son Estace to Constance a Daughter of Lewis King of France, which alliance alone might be thought a sufficient security against all Opposition. And yet one thing more, which establisht him more then these, at least these the more for this, that he had seise upon King enries tresure, which amounted to a hundred thousand pound, beside Plate and ewels of inestimable value, which he spet no〈◊〉 vaine riot, but imployed to his best advantage, both in procuring of Friends, and in levying of Souldiers out of Britany and Flanders.

Of his Troubles in his Raigne.

THere may wel be made a Chapter of the troubles of his Raign, seeing his whole Raign was in a manner but one continued trouble, at leat no longer intermissiō, then as to give him breath against new encounters; til at last, when he grew towards his lst, he rather left to be in trouble, then was at quiet, being forced to make his ad∣versary his Here; and to leave his Crown to him that had sought his life. For he was no sooner set in his Chaire of State, but he was presently disquieted and made to rise, by the provocation of David King of Scots, who solicited by some Lords of England, but chiefly by Made the Empresse (whose Right he had sworne to de∣fend) with a mighty Army entred Nrthumberland, tooke Carlile, and Newcastle, and was proceeding further, till King Stephen with a greater Army comming a∣gainst him, yet rather bought his Peace then wonne it; for to recover Newcastle out of his hands, he was faine to let King David hold Cumberland, and his Sonne Henry the Earledome of Huntington, as their Inheritance; for which, the Father would not for his, as being engaged, but the Sonne for his, as being free, did Ho∣mage to King Stephen.

No sooner was this trouble over, but he was presently under another; for be∣ing faine somewhat ill at ease it was bruited abroad that he was dead; which o distracted mens mindes, that every one thought it wisdome to shift for himselfe; and the Great Lords made a contrary use of Castles, to that which King Stephen intended, when he gave liberty to build them; for the King intended them for his owne defence against his Enemies, and they made use of them in their owne de∣fence against the King; for now Hugh Bigt Earle of Norfolke possesseth himselfe of Nrwich, Baldwyn Rivers of Oxford, and Robert Quesqurius of other Castles. In these difficulties King Stephen, though he could not in person be in all places at onc, yet in care he was and there most, where was most danger; imploying others against the rest: Against Baldwyn he went himselfe, whom, driven before out of Oxford, and gotten to the Isle of Wight, the King fo••owed and drove him al∣so from thence, aud at last into Exile.

And now England afforded him once againe to take a little breath, but then Nor∣mandy presently begins with him afresh: For now Goffrey Pl••tagenet Duke of An∣jou, in right of Maude his Wife, enters upon his Townes there, and eees to get possession of the Country; when King Stephen passeth over with an Army, and ar∣ests his proceeding: and after some small defeates of his Enemies, brings the matter at last to a pecuniary Composition: He to pay the Duke five thousand Markes a yeare, and the Duke to relinquish his claime to Normandy. This done, he returnes into England, where new Commotions are attending him For the Lords in his absence, resenting his breach of Promises, upon which they had a∣mitted Page  63 him to the Crowne, make use every one of their Castles, and stand upon their Guard: The Lord Talbot held Hereford; Earle Robert Mads Brother, Bristow; William Lovell, the Castle of Cary; Paganell, the Castle of Ludlw; William Moun, the Castle of Dunster; Robert Nicholor of Lincolne, the Castle of Warham; Eustace the Sonne of Iohn, the Castle of Melton; William the Sonne of Alan, the Castle of Shrewsbury; and withall David King of Scots, never regarding his former agree∣ment, enters Northumberland with an Army, committing so great cruelty, in ra∣vishing of Maydes, murthering of Infants, slaughtering of Priests, even at the Al∣tar, that never any barbarous Nation committed greater. Thus the kingdome from the one end to the other was in Combustion, that if the King had had as ma∣ny hands as Briareus, there would have beene worke enough for them all. Yet all this dismayed not the King, but as having learned this Lesson, Tu ne cede malis, sed contra audentior ito, growes the more in confidence, the lesse he was in assurance; and as if danger were the fuell of Courage, the more erected in himselfe, the lesse he was upheld by others; and so, venturing what his Rebels at home would doe in his absence, he passeth himselfe in person against David King of Scots; as being the most dangerous, and therefore the first to be repressed: but finding it hard to draw him to a Battell, and impossible without a battell to doe any good upon him; he leaves the care of that quarrell to Thurstine Arch-bishop of Yorke, and returnes himselfe home, if it may be called home, where he scarce had a safe place to put his head in. But though many Lords were Rebellious against him, yet some there were stucke firmely to him, by whose Assistance and his owne industry, partly by inticements, partly by inforcements, he reduced most of them to Obedience, and all of them to Submission; when in the meane time Thurstine Arch-bishop of Yorke; and in his sicknesse, Ralph Bishop of Durham, assisted with William Earle of Aumerle, William Piperell of Nottingham, and Hubert de Lacy, fought a memo∣rable Battell against David King of Scots; wherein though King David himselfe, and his Sonne Henry performed wonderfull Acts of Prowesse, yet the English got the Victory, with the slaughter of eleven thousand Scots in the Fight, besides ma∣ny other slaine in the flight; where of the English none of account were slaine, but onely a Brother of Hubert Lacyes, and some small number of Common Souldiers. This Victory infinitely pleased and comforted King Stephen, who not long after to make an absolute suppression of the Scots, passeth againe with an Army, and inforceth King David to demand a Peace, delivering his Sonne Henry into King Stephens hands for a pledge; and comming homeward, by the way he besieged Ludlow, one of Rebels nests, where Prince Henry of Scotland had beene taken Pri∣soner, if King Stephen in his owne person had not rescued him.

After this, once againe the King got a little breathing time, but it was but to prepare him for greater Encounters: For now Maud the Empresse her selfe in per∣son comes into play; in whom the Oath before taken was to have its tryall; for till now, though never so really intended, yet it could not actually be performed; for how could they receive her for Queene, who came not in place to be received? but now that she came in person, now was the time of tryall, how the Oath would worke; and worke it did indeed with many, and that strongly; For Maude com∣ming into England, with Robert Earle of Glocester her Brother; was most joyfully received at Arundell Castle, by William de Aubigny, who had marryed Adeliza the Queene Dowager of the late King Henry, and had the said Castle and County assigned her for her Dower. King Stephen having intelligence hereof, commeth to Arundell Castell wih an Army, and besiegeth it; but either diverted by ill counsell, or else finding the Castle to be inexpugnable, he left the siege, and suffe∣red the Empresse to passe to Bristow. The King hearing, that Raulph Earle of Chester, Sonne in law to Robert Earle of Glocester, had possest himselfe of the City of Lincolne, thither he goeth with an Army and besiegeth it: thither also came the said Earle of Chester, and Robert Earle of Glocester to raise his siege; at which time, a most fierce battell was fought betweene them, upon Candlemas day; where∣in it is memorable what wonders of valour King Stephen performed; For, when Page  64 all his men about him were either fled or slaine; yet he kept the field himselfe alone: no man daring to come neare him: Horrentibus inimicis incomparabilem ictuum ejus im∣manitatem, saith Hoveden: yet over-mastered at last by multitude, he was taken prisoner, and brought to Maude the Empresse; who sent him to be kept in safe cu∣stody in the Castle of Brisow, where he remained till All-hollantide after. And now the Empresse having gotten King Stephen into her hands, she takes her journey to London; received in all places, as she went, peaceably, and at London joyfully; where Queene Matild made humble suite uno her, for the liberty of King Stephen her husband; and that he might but be allowed to live a private life: the Londoners also made suite to have the Lawes of King Edward restored; but the Empresse not onely rejected both their suites, but returned them answers in harsh and insulting language; Indeed most unseasonably; and which gave a stop to the current of all her fortunes: for Queene Matild finding thereby, how high the Empresse pulses did beate; sent presently to her Sonne Eustace, being then in Kent, to raise Forces with all speed, with whom, the Londoners, as much discontented as she, doe after∣wards joyne; and Heny Bishop of Winchester, as much discontented as either of them, fortifies his Castles at Waltham and Farnham; and specially Winchester, where he stayes himsele, attending upon what Coast the next wind of the Em∣presse would blow. Of all these things the Empresse had intelligence, and there∣upon secretly in the night she fled to Oxford, sending streight charge, to have King Stephen more narrowly watched, more hardly used; put (as some write) into fet∣ters; and fed with very bare and poore Commons; withall she sends to her Un∣kle David Kings of Scots, to come unto her with all speed possible, who comming accordingly, they fall into consultation what is first to be done; the lot fals upon Winchester, as being their greatest adversary, now, no lesse in apparence then in power: so Winchester they besiege; which Queene Matild hearing, she with her Sonne Eustace and the Londoners, come presently to the succour, where a fierce battell being fought, the end was, that the party of Queene Matild prevailed, and the Empresse to make her escape, was faine to be laid upon a Horse backe in man∣ner of a dead Corps, and so conveyed to Glocester; while Earle Robert her brother disdaining to flie, was taken Prisoner, whom Queene Matild caused to be used the more hardly, in retaliation of the hard usage which the Empresse before had shewed to King Stephen. Things standing in these termes, propositions were made by the Lords for pacification, but such were the high spirits of the Empresse, and her bro∣ther Robert, that no conditions would please them, unlesse the Empresse might enjoy the Crowne. But after long debate, whether by agreement betweene them∣selves, or by connivence of the keepers, both King Stephen and Earle Robert got to be at liberty. When the first thing King Stephen did, was to looke out the Em∣presse, to requite the kindnesse she had shewed him in prison; and hearing her to be at Oxford, he layes siege to the Towne, and brings the Empresse to such di∣stresse, that she had no way to free her selfe but by flight; and no way to flee but with manifest danger, yet she effected it by this devise: It was in the Winter sea∣son, when frost and snow covered all the ground over; she therefore clad her selfe, and her foure servants that were with her in white cloathes, which being of the colour of Snow, made her passe the Watches without being discerned, and by this meanes came safe to her friends at Wallingford. Yet Mamesbury who lived at that time, confesseth he could never learne certainely by what meanes she made her e∣scape. But howsoever she escaped this present danger; yet it left such an impres∣sion of feare upon her, that she never after had any mind to appeare upon this stage of Warre, but left the prosecution of it to her Sonne Henry, who was now about sixteene yeares of age, and being forward of his age, and able to beare Armes was by his great Unkle David King of Scots, Knighted, to make him more for∣ward.

It was now the ninth yeare of King Stephens Raigne, when Ralph Earle of Che∣ster, keeping possession of the City of Lincolne, was in the night time assaulted by the King; but the Earle perceiving the Kings Forces to be but small, suddenly is∣sued Page  65 forth, and repelled the King with the slaughter of fourescore of his men. Yet two yeares after this, the Earle was reconciled to the King, and came of his owne accord to waite upon him, when perfidiously he was detained by the King; and not set at liberty, till he had surrendred into the Kings hands all the Castles that were in his possession; which though it brought the King some present benefit, yet it wrought him a greater future losse; for it lost him his credite with all men, and no man afterward would trust his word.

Now was Duke Henry come to the age of nineteene yeares, and was in possessi∣on of the Dukedome of Anjou, by the death of his Father Geoffrey Plantagenet; and not long after this, he marryed Eleanor the Daughter and Heire of William Duke of Guyen, by whom he had that Dutchy, and also the Earledome of Poicton: Nor∣mandy he had by his Mother; but more by the peoples inclination. So as being possest now of foure great Principalities, this greatnesse of Estate added to the greatnesse of his spirit, made him aspiring to recover his Right in England; and o∣ver he comes, bringing with him but small Forces, but promising himselfe great, from the people of this kingdome: and many indeed resorted to him; with whom he fell presently, and besieged Marleborough; but by the Kings greater Forces was repelled.

After this, their Armies continued in the field still; rather watching advantages to be doing, then doing any thing; sometimes advancing when no Enemy was neare, and then retiring when the Enemy came; till at last it was like to come to a set Battell, when suddenly Eustace King Stephens onely Sonne unfortunately dy∣ed: Unfortunately for himselfe, but fortunately for the kingdome; For now King Stephen being left destitute of issue to succeed, was the more easily drawne to con∣ditions of Peace, as likewise the Empresse Maude, having lately lost her Brother Robert Earle of Glocester, and Miles Earle of Hereford, (her two best Champions) was no lesse willing of Peace then he; which being furthered by the Lords of both sides, was at last concluded upon these conditions, that Stephen should hold the kingdome of England during his life, and adopt Duke Henry as his Heire to succeed him. And this agreement thus made, and in a Parliament at Winchester confirmed, Duke Henry ever after accounted King Stephen no lesse then a Father, and King Stephen, Duke Henry no lesse then a Sonne: and well he might, if it be true which some write, that the Empresse, when a Battell was to be fought betweene King Stephen and her Sonne, went privily to him, asking him how he could find in his heart to fight against him that was his owne Sonne? could he forget the familia∣rity he had with her in her firt Widow-hood? But this was no matter for the Writers of that time to deliver: It touched too neare the interest of Princes then in being: and Princes must not be touched while they live, nor when they are dead neither with uncertainties, as this could be no other: But howsoever it was, cer∣taine it is, that after this Agreement betweene King Stephen and Duke Henry, they continued in mutuall love and concord, as long after as they lived.

But what became of Maude the Empresse at this time? For, that she was alive, and lived many yeares after this agreement betweene King Stephen and her Sonne Henry, all Writers agree; and to say that she consented to the Agreement, without a∣ny provision made for her selfe, is to make her too much a Woman; a very weake vessell: and to say there might be provision made, though it be not Recorded, is to make all Writers defective in a great excesse. And besides, being so stirring a woman as she was, that upon a suddaine she should be so quiet, as not to deserve to have one word spoken of her, in all the long time she lived after, (being no lesse then twelve or thirteene yeares) is as strange as the rest. And if she placed her con∣tentment so wholly in her Sonne, that in regard of him, she regarded not her selfe at all; It deserves at least the Encomium of such a motherly love as is very unusuall, and not alwayes safe. Whatsoever it was, I must be faine to leave it as a Gordian knot, which no Writer helpes me to unty.

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Of his Taxations, and wayes for raising of money.

OF Taxations in his time, there is no mention made; for Taxations indeed, are properly drawne from a body of State when it is entire, where the State all this Kings time was altogether in Fractions. But what he wanted in Taxations, he supplyed with Confiscations, which by reason of the many revoltings of men of all sorts, could not chuse but fill his Coffers; every Rebellion being in nature of a Purchase to him, for whatsoever became of the Persons, their Lands and Goods were sure to be his. And if it happened at any time, that Confiscations came in but slowly, he had then devises to hasten their pace, for upon light sug∣gestions (not so much oftentimes as just suspitions) he would call men into que∣stion, and seise upon their good, as in the case particularly of Ralph Bishop of Sa∣lisbury; and it may not be unpleasing to heare from what beginning this Bishop grew to such a height of greatnesse; which was thus; In the time of King William Rufus, he was a poore Priest, serving a Cure in a village neare to Can in Norman∣dy, when the Kings younger Brother Henry chanced to passe that way, and to make some stay in the said Village; who being desirous to heare a Masse, this Roger being Curate, was the man to say it; which he dispatched with such celerity, that the Souldiers (who commonly love not long Masses) commended him for it, telling their Lord, that there could not a fitter Priest be found for men of warre then he. Whereupon Henry appointed him to follow him, and when he came to be King, preferred him to many great places, and at last to be Chancellour of England, and Bishop of Salisbury. You have heard his rising, now heare his fall; When King Stephen came to the Crowne, he held this man in as great account as his Predeces∣sour King Henry had done, and perhaps in greater; For being a great begger of Suites, the King would say of him, If this man will never give over asking, neither shall I ever give over giving. Yet this great Prelate fell first through Pride into Envy, and then through Envy into Ruine. For King Stephen having given liberty to build Castles, this man did so frre exceed all others in magnificence (for he builded the Castles of Salisbury, the Vyes, Sherburne, Mamesbury and Newarke, to which there were no Structures comparable in the kingdome) that the Lords out of envy put it into the Kings head, that these Castles of his were built thus magni∣ficently for entertainment of Made the Empresse: which so possessed the King, or he would be thought to be so possessed, that taking this for a just cause, he seised them all into his hands, and forty thousand Markes besides, which he had in mo∣ney: and not cotented with this, he tooke the like course also with Alexander Bi∣shop of Lincolne, onely because he was his Nephew and of his neare kindred. An∣other way he had for gaining of money: For in the first yeare of his Raigne, ha∣ving given liberty to hunt in his Forests, be afterward at Oxford caused many to be impleaded for using that liberty; a tricke which perhaps he learned from hun∣ting, First to give men leave to doe a thing, and then to Fine them for having done it. But this is the priviledge of Princes, that their leave must be interpreted by him that gives it, and not by him that takes it.

Lawes and Ordinances in his time.

HE gave licence to the City of Norwich to have Coroners and Bayliffes, before which time, they had onely a Sergeant for the King to keepe Courts; and af∣ter this, in the 37. yeare of King Henry the third, they had license to inclose the Towne with Ditches.

Affaires of the Church in his time.

VPon the Kings seising into his hands, the Bishop of Salisburies Castles, and Goods, complaint was made, and a Synod called by the Bishop of Winche∣sterPage  67 the Popes Legate, to right the Bishop, where the King was cited to appeare; who sending to know the cause, Answer was made, that it was to answer for his imprisoning of Bishops, and depriving them of their Goods, which being a Chri∣stian King he ought not to doe. The King replies by his Lawyer, Alveric de Ver, that he had not arrested the Bishop of Salisbury as a Bishop, but as his Servant, that was to make him accompt of his imployment. To this the Bishop answereth, that he was never Servant or Accomptant to the King: and many Allegations and Pro∣bations were urged to and fro, but in conclusion the Synod brake up, and nothing was done. The Bishops durst not Excommunicate the King without the Popes pri∣vity; so in the end they fell from Authority to Submission; and in the Kings Cham∣ber fell downe at his Feet, beseeching him he would pity the Church; and not suffer dissention to be betweene the Kingdome and the Priest-hood. And this was no small magnanimity in the King, that he was able to pull downe the high sto∣machs of the Prelates in that time. In the eighth yeare of his Raigne a Synod was held in London by Henry Bishop of Winchester, where it was decreed, that who∣soever should lay violent hands upon any Clergy man, should not be absolved but by the Pope himselfe: and from this time forward, Clergy men were exempt from the secular power. In the tenth yeare of his Raigne, by the soliciting of Saint Ber∣nard, many tooke upon them the Crosse, for a supply to the Holy Land; amongst whom, some English Lords also.

Workes of piety done by him, or by others in his time.

HE Founded the Abbeys of Cogshall in Essex; of Furneys in Lancashire; of Hur∣guilers and Feversham in Kent; at Heigham in Kent, a House of blacke Nunnes; also an house for Nunnes at Carew: His Queene Matild builded the Hospitall of Saint Katherines by the Tower of London: A knight called Sir William of Mount Fit∣chet, Founded the Abbey of Stratford Langthorne, within foure miles of London; William of Ypre Founded Boxeley Abbey in Kent; Robert Earle of Ferrers, Founded the Abbey of Merivall in Warwickshire; and in the same Shire, Robert Earle of Glo∣cester, the Abbey of Nonne Eaten. Also by others were Founded the Abbeys of Tiltey; of Rievall; of Newborough and Beeland; of Garedon in Lycestershire; of Kirkstead in Yorkeshire: and divers others in other places, so that more Abbeys were erected in his dayes, then had beene within the space of a hundred yeares before.

Of his Wife and Children.

HE marryed, by his Unkle King Henries meanes, Matild, Daughter and Heire of Eustace Earle of Boleyne, a Woman made for the proportion of both For∣tunes: In adversity not dejected; in prosperity not elated: while her Husband was at liberty, a Woman; during his durance, as it were a Man; Acting his part for him when he was restrained from acting it himselfe; not looking that Fortune should fall into her lappe, but industrious to procure it. By this Queene, he had onely one Sonne named Eustace, a Prince more then of hope, for he lived to the blossoming of much Valour, though it came not to maturity, as being cut off at eighteene yeares of age, some say, by drowning, and some by a stranger accident. But strange Relations must not alwayes be rejected, for though many of them be forged, yet some no doubt are true; and who knowes but it may be of this kind, which some Writers relate of the death of this Prince: that being at the Abbey of Bury in Norfolke, and denyed some money he required to have had; he present∣ly in a rage went forth, and set fire on the Cornefields belonging to the Abbey, but afterwards sitting downe to dinner, at the first morsell of bread he put into his mouth, he fell into a fit of madnesse, and in that fit dyed? Certainely, the Per∣sons of Princes are for more observation then ordinary people; and as they make Examples, so they are sometimes made Examples. This Prince Eustace was so Page  68 beloved of his father, that he had a purpose to have joyned him King with him∣selfe, but that the Pope upon the Bishops complaining to him of it, diverted him from it. Howsoever being dead, he was buried in Feversham Abbey, where his mo∣ther was buried a little before. Other legitimate issue King Stephen had none, but by a Concubine he had a sonne named William, whom he made Earle of Norfolke, which honour was confirmed upon him, by a speciall Article, in the agreement made betweene King Stephen and Duke Henry: Onely a French Chronicle speakes of another sonne of his, named Gervase, made Abbot of Westminster, and that hee died in the yeare 1160. and was there buried.

Of his Personage and Conditions.

HE was tall of stature, of great strength, and of an excellent good complexion. Concerning the qualities of his minde, there was apparent in him a just mixture of valour and prudence; for if he had not had both, hee could never have held out with such weake friends as he did, against such potent adversaries as he had. And specially it must be confest, he was of an excellent temper for a souldier, seeing he never kild any enemy in cold blood, as Anthonie did Cicero; nor any friend in hot blood, as Alexander did Clitus. What he would have beene in Peace, we are left to Judge by onely a Patterne, the short time betweene his agreement with Duke Hery and his death: which seeing he spent in travelling to all parts of the Realme, and seeking to stich up the breaches which the violence of Warre had made; we may well thinke, that if his life had beene continued, he would have given as good Proofes of his Justice in Peace, as he had done of his Valour in Warre. For of his extraordinary good nature we have a sufficient example in one Action of his, which was this: Duke Henry being on a time, in some straights for money, sent to his Mother Maude the Empresse, desiring her to furnish him, but she answered, that she was in as great straights her selfe, and therefore could not do it; then he sent to his Unkle Earle Robert to furnish him, and he answered, he had little enough to serve his owne turne, and therefore could not doe it; at last he sent to King Sephen, and he though an Adversary, and standing in termes of op∣position, yet sent presently and supplyed him with it. He was withall a great op∣pugner of Superstition, which made him on a time to ride into Lincolne with his Crowne upon his head, onely to breake the people of a superstitious opinion they held, that no King could enter into that City in such manner, but that some great dysaster would fall upon him. One speciall Vertue may be noted in him, that he was not noted for any speciall vice, whereof if there had beene any in him, Writers certainly would not have beene silent.

Of his death and buriall.

AS a Fish cannot live out of Water, no more was it in the Destiny of this King, to live out of trouble; as oone as he came to enjoy quietnesse, he left to en∣joy life, no more time left him betweene his Agreement with Duke Henry and his Death, but onely so much as might reasonably serve him to take his last leave of all his Friends; For it was but from Ianuary to October; and the last Friend he tooke leave of, was Theodoricke Earle of Flanders, whom he met at Dover, and as soone as he had dismissed him, he was suddenly taken with the Iliake Passion, and with an old disease of the Emeraulds: and dyed in the Monastery there, the five and twentyeth of October, in the yeare 1154. when he had Raigned almost nine∣teene yeares, Lived nine and forty; and was Buryed in the Abbey of Feversham, which he had Founded.

Page  69

Men of note in his time.

OF Clergy men, there was Thurstine Arch-bishop of Yorke, and Henry Bishop of Winchester the Kings Brother, also William, another Arch-bishop of Yorke, whom we may finde in the Calender of Saints, as likewise Saint Bernard who lived in this time, though not of this Country, and if we may reckon strangers, there lived at this time, Peter Lombard, Master of the Sentences; Peter Comester, writer of the Ecclesiasticall Story; and Gratian, Compiler of the Canon Law, all three Brothers, and all three Bastards; also Avicen, Averroes, Mesues, and Rabbi Sa∣lomon were in this time famous. Of military men, there was Ranulph Earle of Che∣ster; Reynold Earle of Cornwall; Robert Earle of Leycester; Hugh Bigot, Earle of Nor∣folke, but specially Robert Earle of Glocester, the Kings base Sonne, whose praises, if any desire to heare sounded out to the full, let him read William of Malmesbury, who writ the History of those times, of purpose to be his Trumpet. Of the Writers of our Nation, there was this William of Malmesbury, Henry Huntington, Simon Du∣nelmensis, William Revellensis, and Geoffrey of Monmouth, Bishop of Saint Asaph in Wales. Also Hugo Carthusianus, a Burgundian, but made Bishop of Lincolne here in England.

Page  70


KING Stephen being dead, Henry Duke of Anjou, by his Fa∣ther Geoffry Plantagenet, succeeded him in the Kingdome of En∣gland by agreement; whom he preceded by right, as being Sonne and Heire of Mawde, sole daughter and Heire of King Henry the first; and was crowned at Westminster, by Thebald Arch-Bishop of Canterbury, on the seventeenth of December, in the yeare 1155. and was now a greater Prince then any of his Ancestours had beene before: and indeed, the Kingdome of England, the Dukedome of Normandy, and the Dukedome of Anjou in his owne right; and in the right of his wife Queen Eleanor, the Duchy of uyen, and the Earl∣dome of Poictou bing all united in his person, made him a Dominion of a larger ex∣tent then any King Christian had at that time.

He was borne at Ments in Normandy, in the yeare 1132. a great joy to his Father Geoffry, Duke of Anjou; a greater to his Mother Mawde the Empresse; but so great to his Grandfather King Henry the first, that it seemed to make amends for his sonne William, whom unfortunately he had lost before by Shipwrack. The yeares of his childhood were spent at home under the care of his Parents: at nine yeares old or there abouts, he was brought by his Unkle Robert Earle of Glocester into England, and placed at Bristow, where under the tuition of one Matthew his Schoolemaster, to instruct him in learning, he remained foure yeares, after which time he was sent into Scotland, to his great Unkle David King of Scots, with whom he remained about two yeares, initiated by him in the Principles of State, but chiefely of his owne estate: and being now about fifteene yeares of age, was by him Knighted, and though scarce yet ripe for Armes, yet as a fruit gathered before its time, was mellowed under the discipline of his Unkle Robert, one of the best Souldiers of that time. And now the Duke his Father not able any longer to en∣dure his absence, sent with great instance to have him sent over to him; for satis∣fying of whose longing, Earle Robert provided him of passage, and conducted him himselfe to the Sea side, where he tooke his last farewell of him. Being come into Anjou, his Father, perhaps over-joyed with his presence, not long after died, leaving him in present possession of that Dukedome, being now about nineteene yeares of age: when shortly after he married Eleanor, late the wife of Lewis King of France, but now divorced. A yeare or two after he came againe into England, where after some velitations with King Stephen, they were at last reconciled, and Page  71 his succession to the Crowne of England, ratified by Act of Parliament. Not long after he went againe into France, and presently fell to besiege a Castle which was detained from him by the French King: in the time of which siege, newes was brought him of King Stephens death; which one would have thought should have made him hasten his journey into England; yet he resolved not to stirre till he had wonne the Caste: which resolution of his being knowne to the Defendants, they surrendred the Castle; but yet no sooner, but that it was sixe weekes after before he came into England, when he was now about the age of three and twenty yeares.

His first Acts after he came to the Crowne.

He beganne his Raigne as Solomon would have begunne it, if he had beene in his place: for, first he made choyce of wise and discreet men to be his Consel∣lours: then he banished out of the Realme all strangers, and especially Flemmings, with whom the Kingdome swarmed; as of whom King Stephen had made use in his warres, amongst whom was William of Ypres, lately before made Earle of Kent. Castles which by King Stephens allowance had beene built, he caused to be demolished, (of which there were said to be eleven hundred and fifteene) as being rather Nurseries of rebellion to the subject, then of any safety to the Prince. He appointed the most able men of that profession, to reforme abuses of the Lawes, which disorder of the wars had brought in: He banished many Lords, who a∣gainst their Oath had assisted King Stephen against him; as thinking that men onc perjured, would never be faithfull: and to the end he might be the lesse pressing up∣on the people with Taxations, he resumed all such Lands belonging to the Crown, which had any way beene aliened or usurped; as thinking it better to displease a few then many: and many other things he did, which in a disjoynted State were no lesse profitable and expedient, then requisite and necessary.

His Troubles during his Raigne.

HE had no Competitors, nor Pretenders with him for the Crowne; and therfore his troubles at first were not in Capite, strooke not at the roote, as K. Stephens did: but were onely some certaine niblings at inferiour parts; till at last he brought them himselfe into his own bowels. For what was the trouble in his first yeare with the Welsh, but as an exercise rather to keep him in motion, then that it needed to disquiet his rest? for though they were mutinous for a time, while they looked upon their owne Bucklers; their Woods and Mountainous passages: yet as soone as K. Henry did but shew his sword amongst them, they were soone reduced to obedi∣ence for the present, and to a greater awfulnesse for the future. It is true, Henry Earle of Essex that bore the Kings Standard, was so assaulted by the Welsh, that he let the Standard fall to the ground, which encouraged the Welsh, and put the English in some feare, as supposing the King had beene slaine; but this was soone frustrated to the Welsh, and punished afterward in the Eale, by condemning him to be shorne a Monke, and put into the Abbey of Reading, and had his lands seised into the Kings hands. And what was his trouble with Malcolme King of Scots, but a worke of his owne beginning? for if he would have suffered him to enjoy that which was justly his owne, Cumberland and Huntingtonshire, by the grant of King Stephen, and Northumberland, by the gift of his Mother Maude the Empresse; he might have staied quietly at home, and needed not at all to have stired his foote; but he could not endure there should be such parings off from the body of his Kingdome: and therefore went with an Army into the North, where he wonne not, but tooke Northumberland from him, with the City of Carlill, and the Castles of Newcastle and Bamberg: and meerely out of gratefulnesse, in remembrance of the many cortesies done him before, by David King of Scots; he left him the County of Huntingon, but yet with condition to owe fealy, and to doe homage Page  72 to him for it. And what was his trouble with his brother Geoffrey, but a Bird of his owne hatching? For his Father Geoffrey, Duke of Anjou, had three sonnes, Henry, Geoffrey, and William; and dying he left his Dukedome of Anjou to his eldest son Henry, but to hold no longer then till he should come to be King of England, and then to deliver it up to his second sonne Geoffrey: and he made his Lords to sweare, not to suffer his body to be buried, untill his sonne Henry had taken his Oath to doe it; which Oath Henry afterward, in reverence to his Fathers body, did take: but as he tooke it unwillingly, so he willingly brake it, and sent presently to Adrian the then Pope, for a Dispensation of his Oath: which granted, he enters Anjou with an Army, and takes from his brother Geoffrey, being little able to make resistance, not onely the Dukedome of Anjou, but some other Cities also, which his Father had absolutely given him for his maintenance: yet out of brotherly kindnesse was content to allow him a Pension of a thousand pounds a yeare: which brotherly kindnesse was so unkindly taken by his brother Geoffrey, that it brake his heart; and within a short time after died.

And thus these troubles begun by Henry himselfe, were soone ended; but now a trouble is comming on, begun by Lewis King of France, and this is like to stick long∣er by him. For King Lewis not having yet digested King Henries marriage with his divorced wife Eleanor, seekes all opportunities to expresse his spleene, by doing him displeasure; and a fit opportunity was now offered: for there fell out a difference betweene Raymond Earle of Saint Giles, and Henry King of England, about the Earledome of Tholouse, which Raymond possest, and Henry claimed: in this diffe∣rence, King Lewis takes part with Raymond, as pretending it to be the juster side. Hereupon are great forces provided on both sides, and it was like to have come to a dangerous battell; but that by mediation of friends, a Peace was made; and to make the Peace the firmer, a marriage was concluded betweene Henry, King Hen∣ries eldest sonne, scarce yet seven yeares of age; and Margaret, daughter of King Lewis, not past three: who was delivered to King Henry to bring up till fit yeares for consummation. This was then thought a strong linke to hold them in friend∣ship, but it proved afterward a cause to make the greater breach: and indeed when a sonne is once matched into a Family, the Father must never looke from thence afterward to have a good wish; seeing the daughter thus matched can have no ad∣vancement, but by the advancement of her husband; and he none, at least, none so wll, as by the ruine of his Father: yet this brake not out till some yeares af∣ter. It was now about the eighteenth yeere of King Henries Raigne, and his sonne Henry growne to be seventeene yeares of age when it came into the Kings minde to have his sonne Henry crowned King, and Raigne with himselfe in his owne time; partly out of indulgence to his sonne, but chiefely, as having found by his owne experience, that Oaths for succession are commonly eluded: but Oaths for present Allegeance, as being Verba de Praesenti, can have no evasion: and pleasing himselfe with this conceit, he acquaints his Lords with his purpose, and causeth his sonne Henry to be crowned King by the hands of Roger Arch-bishop of Yorke; and all the Lords to sweare Allegeance to him: at the Feast of which solemnity, King Henry to honour his sonne, would needs carry up the first dish to his Table; whereupon the Arch-bishop Roger standing by, and saying merrily to the new King: What an honour is this to you, to have such a waiter at your Table? Why (saith he) what great matter is it for him that was but the sonne of a Duke, to doe service to me, that am the sonne of a King and Queene? Which the old King hearing, beganne to repent him, now it was too late of that he had done. For indeed the honour which by Gods commandement, children are to doe to their Parents; is by such making them their equals, in a manner abolished; at least it gives them stomachs to take more upon them then is fit. But King Henry passed it over, and meant to set the best side outward.

And now King Lewis tooke displeasure that his daughter was not crowned as well as her husband, and therefore to satisfie him in that point, King Henry sendeth his sonne Henry and his wife Margaret into England and causeth them both to be Page  73 crowned by Walter Arch-bishop of Roan: and shortly after, the young King Henry and his wife goe backe to King Lewis her Father, and by him with great joy, and variety of sports were entertained. In the time of their being there, King Lewis partly out of his old spleene to King Henry, and partly to make his sonne in law more absolure; fals oftentimes into conference with him, and finding his hot spirit to be fit tinder for such fire, tels him, it was a shame he should suffer himselfe to be made a stale; have the title of a King, and not the authority: and that as long as he stood in such termes, that which seemed an honour, was indeed a disgrace. With which words of King Lewis, the young King Henry was set afloate, and from that time forward, stucke not openly to oppose his Father: whereof his Father ha∣ving intelligence, sent messengers to King Lewis, desiring him from the King their Master, to be a meanes to bring his sonne to more moderation. But King Lewis hearing the Embassadours name their Master King, with an angry countenance said unto them; What mean you by this to call him King, who hath passed his King∣dome over to his son? and with this answer sent them away. To this evill, another worse was added: that Queene Eleanor his wife enraged with jealousie of her hus∣bands Concubines, both incenseth her sonne Henry, and perswadeth also two other of her sonnes, Richard and Geoffrey, to joyne against their Father; telling them, it would be better for them that their brother should prevaile, who could not chuse but allow them better maintenance, then their Father did. With these per∣swasions they passe over into Normandy, and joyne with their brother Henry; who emboldned by their assistance, growes now more insolent then he was before; that when messengers were sent to him from his Father, requiring him to lay downe his Armes, and to come lovingly to him: he proudly made answer, that his Fa∣ther must not looke he would lay downe his Armes, unlesse himselfe first would lay downe his authority, and resigne the Kingdome. And now Lewis King of France, calling together the great Lords of his Kingdome, and with them William King of Scots, Hugh Earle of Chester, Roger Mowbray, Hugh Pigot, and other of his sonnes party; they all take their Oaths to assist the young King Henry with all their power; and thereupon all in one day, the French invade Normandy, Aquitaine and Britaine; the King of Scots Northumberland; and King Lewis the City of Vernoill, which he brought to that distresse, that it was agreed by the Inhabitants, if it were not succoured within three dayes, then to surrender it. King Henry hearing of this agreement, promiseth to succour them by that day. But here King Lewis useth a trick, gets that by fraud, which he could not doe by force; for he sends to King Henry, that if he were willing to have peace with his sonnes, he should meet him at a place appointed, at such a time, and he doubted not to effect it. King Henry glad of such an offer, and with that gladnesse perhaps blinded, and not suspecting any deceit, promiseth to meete; and comming to the place at the day, which was the day he should have succoured Vernoill, he stayed there all day looking for King Lewis comming; who instead of comming, sent word to Vernoill, that King Henry was defeated; and therefore their hope of succour was in vaine: whereupon the Citizens thinking it to be so indeed, because he came not according to his promise, surrendred the Towne: which King Lewis finding himselfe unable to hold, set it on fire, and so departed. But King Henry when he perceived the fraud, followed him with his Army, and tooke a bloody revenge of his fraud, with the slaughter of ma∣ny of his men. At the same time also King Henries forces encountred Hugh Earle of Chester, and Robert Fulger, who had taken Dole in Britaine, tooke them prisoners, and brought them to King Henry: and about the same time likewise in England, Robert Earle of Leycester thinking to surprise Raynold Earle of Cornwall, and Richard Lacy, King Henries Generals, at unawares, was himselfe by them overthrowne, and the Towne of Leycester taken; which onely the site of the place defended from being battered to the ground. Robert Earle of Leycester being thus defeated passeth over into France, and being supplied by King Lewis with greater forces then before, is together with Hugh Bigot sent backe into England, to draw the Countrey to Hen∣ry the sonnes party; who at first assault take Norwich: and then setting downe be∣fore Page  74Bury, they are in a great battell, by Richard Lacy, and other of King Henries Captaines, overthrowne with the slaughter of tenne thousand men, and as many taken prisoners; amongst whom Earle Robert himselfe. Yet were not Roger Maw∣bray and Hugh Bigot so daunted with this overthrow, but that together with David the King of Scos brother, they gather new forces, and invade Northumberland and Yorkshire, when Robert Scoccee, Ralph Granula, William Vesci, and Barnard Bayliol (of whom Baynards Castle in London, first tooke the name) Knights of those parts, as∣emble together, and fighting a great battell with them, overthrew them, and tooke the King of Scos prisoner, with many others. Yet is not Hugh Bigot daunted with this neither, but gathers new forces, and takes Norwich; and Robert Ferris, Notting∣ham: the newes whereof, when King Henry the sonne heard, he recovered new spi∣rits, and obtaining new assistance from King Lewis, prepares himselfe afresh for warre: which King Henry the Father hearing, returnes speedily into England; and to appease Saint Thomas Beckets Ghost, goes to visit his Tombe, and there askes him forgivenesse. This done, he goes into Suffolke, and at Framingham Castle, which belonged to Hugh Bigot, stayes with his Army, when suddenly moved, by what instinct, no man knowes (unlesse the appeasing of Saint Thomas Ghost did worke it) both Hugh Bigot delivers up his Castle into King Henries hands, and like∣wise Roger Mawbray, Robert Ferris, and many others of that party, come voluntari∣ly in, and submit themselves to the Kings mercy. Hereupon King Henry returnes to London, about which time he committed his wife Queene Eleanor to prison, for her practises against him. In the meane time, King Lewis understanding that Nor∣mandy was but weakly guarded, together with his sonne the young King Henry, and Philip Earle of Flaunders; he besiegeth Roan, which the Kings forces valiantly de∣fended, till he came himselfe in person; and thereupon King Lewis despairing of any good to be doe, sends messengers to King Henry for a truce, and appointed a day to meete at Gysors, where he doubted not to make a reconcilement betweene his sons and him; K. Henry agreed willingly, but of the meeting nothing was done: It seemes it was but one of King Lewis his old tricks to come fairely off.

After this truce made with King Lewis, King Henry hearing that his son Richard had in the meane time possest himselfe of a great part of the Province of Poicto; goes thither with an Army, where Richard at last, after some hesitation, as doubt∣ing his forces, submits himselfe to his Father, and askes his pardon; which his Fa∣ther as freely grants, as if he had never committed any fault; and thereupon King Henry imployes him to King Lewis and his brother Henry, to perswade them to peace: who wearied now with the warres, were easily drawne, and so reconcilia∣tion on all parts is made; and to confirme the reconciliation betweene the two Kings, Henry and Lewis, his daughter Adela is affianced to King Henries sonne Richard, as Earle of Aquitaine, and because the Lady was but young, she was com∣mitted to the care of King Henry, till she should be fit for marriage. Upon this King Henry sets Robert Earle of Leycester, and Hugh Earle of Chester, giving hosta∣ges and oath for their Allegeance, at liberty; and William also King of Scots, paying a certaine mulct; for which he delivered in pawne the strong Castles of Berwick, Roxborough, and Sterling to King Henry, and was fined also to lose the County of Huntington, and never to receive any Rebels into his protection. These things done, the King with his sonnes returnes into England, where with all joy∣fulnesse they were received. It was now the yeare 1179. when King Lewis beganne againe to grow discontented with King Henry, because his daughter was not yet married to his sonne Richard, as was agreed: but King Henry making him promise to have them married within a few dayes, gave him satisfaction; though indeed he meant nothing lesse, for it was thought he kept her for himselfe, as with whom he had before that time, had unlawfull familiarity. The yeare after was memora∣ble for nothing, or for nothing so much as the death of the young King Henry, who died then; whose Widow Margaret returning into France, was afterward married to Bela King of Hungary. Now King Henries sonne Richard, no longer enduring to have his marriage delayed, which his Father often promised, but would never Page  75 suffer to be performed; fals into his old fit of discontentment: wherein though he cannot perhaps be justified, yet he may justly be excused, for to be kept from a wife at that time of his age, for which a wife was most proper; and especially having beene affianced so long before, which could not chuse but make his appetite the sharper: must needs be, if not a just cause, at least a strong provocation to make him doe as he did: Howsoever, from this fit of discontentment, he fals into a relaps of Rebellion, and infecting with it his brother Iohn, and a great part of his Fathers Adherents; they all take part with Philip (now after the decease of Lewis) King of France, who willing to make use of their assistance, before the streame of filiall awfulnesse should returne into the naturall Channell, takes them along with him, and besiegeth the City of Ments, in which King Henry at that time was himselfe in person; who apprehending the danger, and then resenting the mischiefe of falling into his enemies hands, gets him secretly out of the City, leaving it to defend it selfe, till he should returne with greater forces: but hearing afterward that the Towne was taken, he fell into so great a distraction of minde, that it made him break out into these blasphemous words; I shall never hereafter love God any more, that hath suffered a City so deare unto me, to be taken from me: but he quickly re∣collected himselfe, and repented him that he had spoken the words. Indeed Ments was the City in which he was borne, that to have this City taken from him, was as much as to have his Birth-right taken from him; and to say the truth, after he had lost this City, he scarce seemed to be alive; not onely because he shortly after died, but because the state of Majesty which had all his life accompanied him, after this forsooke him: for now he was faine to begge peace of his enemies, who often be∣fore had begged it of him: now he was glad to yeeld to conditions, which no force before could have wrested from him. It is memorable and worth observing, that when these two Kings had meeting betweene Turwyn and Arras, for recon∣cilement of differences; there suddenly happened a Thunderbolt to light just be∣tweene them, with so terrible a cracke, that it forced them for that time to breake off their conference: and afterward at another meeting, the like accident of Thun∣der happened againe, which so amazed King Henry, that he had fallen off his horse, if he had not beene supported by those about him; which could be nothing but drops let fall of the Divine anger, and manifest presages of his future dysasters. And thus this great Princes troubles, which beganne in little ones, and were conti∣nued in great ones, ended at last in so great a trouble, that it ended his life, and left him an example of desolation, notwithstanding all his greatnesse; forsaken of his friends, forsaken of his wife, forsaken of his children; and (if he were not him∣selfe when he blasphemed for the losse of Ments) forsaken of himselfe; which might be exemplar in this King, if it were not the common Epilogue of all great∣nesse.

Of his Acquest of Ireland.

RObert Fits-stephen was the first of all Englishmen, after the Conquest, that en∣tred Ireland, the first day of May, in the yeare 1170. with 390. men: and there took Werford, in the behalfe of Deruntius, sonne of Marcherdach, called Mac Murg, King of Leymster. In September following, Richard Earle of Chepstow, surnamed Strong-bow, sayled into Ireland with twelve hundred men, where he tooke Water∣ford and Dublin; and married Eeve, the daughter of Deruntius, as he was promi∣sed. From these beginnings, King Henry being then at rest from all Hostile Armes, both at home and abroad, takes into his consideration the Kingdome of Ireland, as a Kingdome which oftentimes afforded assistance to the French; and therefore purposing with himselfe by all meanes to subdue it: he provides a mighty Army, and in the Winter season saileth thither, taking Shipping at Pembroke, and landing neare to Waterford: where entring into consultation what course was fittest to be taken in the enterprise, suddenly of their owne accord, the Princes of the Countrey came in, and submitted themselves unto him, onely Rdrick King of Connacht stood Page  76 out; who being the greatest, thought to make himselfe the onely King of that Na∣tion: but King Henry forbearing him for the present, who kept himselfe in his fast∣nesses of Bogges and Woods, and was not to be followed in the Winter season: takes his journey to Dublin, the chiefe City of the Countrey; and there calling the Princes and Bishops of the Nation together, requires their consent to have him and his heires to be their King: which they affirming they could not doe without the Popes authority; to whom, at their first conversion to the Christian Religion, they had submitted themselves; the King sent presently to Adrian the then Pope an English man, requiring his assent; which upon divers good considerations he granted: and hereupon the King built him a stately Palace in the City of Dublin; and having thus without bloud possest himselfe of the Kingdome, the Spring fol∣lowing he returnes joyfully into England. About foure yeares after Rodorick also sends his Chancellour to King Henry, to offer his submission, with a tribute to be paid of every tenne beasts, one sufficient. After this, in the one and thirtieth yeare of his Raigne, he sent his sonne Iohn to be the Governour there.

His Taxations, and wayes for raising of money.

TAxations in his time, was chiefely once; when he tooke Escuage of English∣men, towards his warres in France, which amounted to 12400. pounds: but confiscations were many, because many Rebellions, and every Rebellion was as good as a Mine. Also vacancies of Bishopricks and Abbeys, kept in his hands, sometimes many at once; no time without some. He resumed also all Lands which had either beene sold or given from the Crowne by his Predecessours: but a principall cause that made him plentifull in money, was his Parcimony; as when he was injoyned for a Penance, to build three Abbeys, he performed it, by chan∣ging Secular Priests into Regular Chanons, onely to spare cost. And it was not the least cause of alienating his sonnes from him; that he allowed them not main∣tenance answerable to their calling. And it could be nothing but Parcimony while he lived, which brought it to passe, that when he died, there were found in his Cof∣fers, nine hundred thousand pounds besides Plate and Jewels.

Lawes and Ordinances in his time.

IN the beginning of his Raign, he refined and reformed the Lawes of the Realm; making them more tolerable & more profitable to his people then they were be∣fore. In the one and twentieth year of his Raign, he divided his whole kingdom into six several Circuits; appointing in every Circuit three Judges, who twice every year should ride together, to heare and determine Causes between man and man: as it is at this day, though altered in the number of the Judges, and in the Shires of Cir∣cuit. In this Kings dayes the number of Jewes all England over was great: yet, wheresoever they dwelt, they might not bury any of their dead any where but in London; which being a great inconvenience to bring dead bodies oftentimes from farre remote places, the King gave them liberty of buriall in the severall places where they lived. It was in this Kings dayes also ordained that Clergy-men offen∣ding in hunting the Kings Deere, should be punishable by the Civill Magistrate, according to the Lawes of the Land; which order was afterward taken with them for any offence whatsoever they committed. Though it be not a Law, yet it is an Ordinance which was first brought in by this King, that the Lions should be kept in the Tower of London.

Affaires of the Church in his tim.

THis Kings Raigne is famous for the contention of a Subject with the Prince, and though it may be thought no equall match, yet in this Example we shall find it hard to judge which of them had the victory. But before we come to speak Page  77 of the Contention, it is fit to say something of the Man, and of the Quarrell. The man was Thomas Becket, borne in London, his Father, one Gilbert Becket, his Mo∣ther an outlandish Woman, of the Country of Syria. His first rising was under Theobald Archbishop of Canterbury, who taking a liking to him, (as one saith, no man knew for what) made him first Arch-deacon of Canterbury, and then used meanes to have him be the Princes Tutor, after that to be Chancellour of England, and after the decease of the said Theobald, was himselfe made Arch-bishop of Can∣terbury in his place. One memorable thing he did at his comming to be Arch-bishop, he surrendred his place of being Chancellour, as not thinking it fit to sit at the Helme of the Common-wealth, and of the Church, both at once. But now began the Contention betweene the King and him: the difference was, the King would have it ordained that Clergy men who were malefactors, should be tryed before the Secular Magistrate as Lay men were: This Becket opposed, saying, it was against the liberty of the Church, and therefore against the honour of God. Many Bishops stood with the King, some few with Becket the Contention grew long, and with the length still hotter, till at last Becket was content to assent to the Ordinance with this clause, Salvo Ordine suo: the King liked not the Clause, as being a deluding of the Ordinance: He required an absolute assent, without any clause of Reservation. At last, after many debatings and demurres, the Arch-bi∣shop yeelds to this also, and subscribes the Ordinance, and sets his hand unto it. But going homewards, it is said, his Crosse-bearer and some other about him, bla∣med him for that he had done, but whether moved with their words, or other∣wise upon second thoughts, the next day when they met againe, he openly re∣pented his former deed, retracts his subscription, and sends to the Pope for ab∣solution of his fault: which the Pope not onely granted, but encouraged him to persist in the course he had begunne. It may be thought a Fable, yet is related by divers good Authours, that one time during this Contention, certaine fellows cut off the Arch-bishops horses taile; after which fact, all their Children were borne with tailes like horses; and that this continued long in their Posterity, though now long since ceased, and perhaps their Families too. But King Henry finding there was no prevailing with Becket by faire meanes, beginnes to deale more roughly with him, and first makes use of Authority upon his Temporalties; and withall a censure was spoken of to be intended against his person; which Becket understand∣ing, thought it his best course to flee the Realme, and thereupon passing under the name of Dereman, he passeth over Sea, and there, two yeares by the Pope, and five by the King of France, was maintained as it were of Almes: in which misery, nothing vexed him so much, as that King Henry sent all his kindred, Men and Wo∣men, old and young into Banishment after him. And now King Henry finding that Becket stood much upon his Legatine Power, sent messengers to the Pope, de∣siring him to take that power from him, and to conferre it upon his Arch-bishop of Yorke, but the Pope answered, he would not doe so, but was content the King himselfe should be his Legate, and sent him Letters to that purpose, which King Henry tooke in such scorne, that he threw away the Letters, and sent them present∣ly backe to him againe.

In this meane time, the King of France prevailed with King Henry to afford Becket a conference, hoping to bring them to some Agreement, where being to∣gether, King Henry alledged before the King of France, that he required nothing of Becket, but his assent to an Ordinance, to which in his Grandfather King Hen∣ries the first time, all the Bishops of the Realme, and the Arch-bishop of Canter∣bury that then was did give their Assent; yet this moved not Becket at all, but he continued his former Tenet, it was against the honour of God, and therefore de∣sired to be excused. See now (saith King Henry) the perversenesse of this man, all that agrees not with his owne humour, is presently against the honour of God. While these things were thus a working, Becket had gotten him more friends at Rome, and by their meanes prevailed with the Pope, to give him power to inter∣dict some Bishops in England that had done him wrong, and the Pope spared noPage  78 to threaten Excommunication to King Henry himselfe, if he restored not Becket to his Dignity. But whether awed with his threatning, or wonne by the King of Frances importunity, or else perhaps relenting in himselfe, he was contented at last that Becket should returne home, and enjoy his Bishopricke; who being come to Canterbury, the Bishops whom he had indicted, for Crowning the young King Henry, (which he said, was his right to have done) made humble suite unto him, to be released of the censure. Which, when the Arch-bishop would not grant, but with certaine cautions and exceptions, the Bishops discontented went over to the King, complaining of the hard measure that was offered them by the Arch-bishop: whereat the King being much moved, Shall I never (saith he) be at quiet for this Priest? If I had any about me that loved me, they would find some way or other to ridde me of this trouble. Whereupon foure knights standing by that heard the King make this complaint, namely Reynold Fits-urse, or Bereson, Hugh Morvyll, William Tracy, and Richard Britton, thinking they should doe an accepta∣ble service to the King, went shortly after into England, and going to Canterbury, found the Arch-bishop then at Church, when upon the steps there, they strucke him upon the head with their swords and slew him the thirtieth day of December, in the yeare 1172. Afterward, with much adoe, by King Henries meanes they were pardoned by the Pope, onely enjoyned Penance, to goe on Plgrimage to Ierusalem, as some write; but others more probably, that the King abhorred them ever after; and that within three yeares they all dyed miserably. You have heard his persecution, and (as some would have it called) his Martyrdome: now heare the honours that have beene done him, and the visitations to his Tombe. And first King Henry himselfe comming to Canterbury, as soone as he came within sight of Beckets Church, lighting off his horse, and putting off his hose and shooes he went barefoot to his Tombe, and for a further penance suffered himselfe to be beaten with rods, by every Monke of the Cloyster. A few yeares after, King Lewis of France comes into England of purpose to visite the Shrine of Saint Thomas, where having paid his Vowes, he makes Oblations with many rich Presents. The like many Princes since that time have done; and many Miracles are reported to have beene done at his Tombe, which yet may be unbeleeved without unbeliefe, and with Faith enough. Another difference in this Kings dayes, was betweene the two Arch-bishops of England, about the jurisdiction of Canterbury over Yorke, which being referred to the Pope, he gave judgement on Canterburies side. Also in this Kings dayes there was a Schisme in the Church of Rome, two Popes up at once, of whom Alexander the third was one; which Schisme continued the space of almost twenty yeares. Also in this Kings dayes, one Nicholas Breakespeare, borne at Saint Albans, or as others write, at Langley in Hartfordshire, being a bondman of that Abbey, and therefore not allowed to be a Monke there, went beyond Sea, where he so profited in Learning, that the Pope made him first Bishop of Alba, and afterward Cardinall, and sent Legate to the Norwayes, where he reduced that na∣tion from Paganisme to Christianity, and returning backe to Rome, was chosen Pope, by the Name of Adrian the fourth, and dyed being choaked with a Fly in his drinke. In his dayes also, Heraclius Patriarch of Hierusalem, came to King Hen∣ry, desiring ayde for the Holy Land, but not so much of money as of men; and not so much of men neither, as of a good Generall, as himselfe was; to whom King Henry answered, that though he were willing to undertake it, yet his unquiet State at home would not suffer him; with which answer the Patriarch moved, said, Thinke not Great King, that Pretences will excuse you before God, but take this from me, that as you forsake Gods cause now, so he hereafter will forsake you in your greatest need. But (saith the King) if I should be absent out of my kingdome, my own Sonnes would be ready to rise up against me in my absence; to which the Patriarch replyed, No marvaile, for from the Devill they came, and to the De∣vill they shall and so departed. Also in this Kings dayes there came into Eng∣land, thirty Germans, Men and Women, calling themselves Publicans, who de∣nyed Matrimony, and the Sacraments of Baptisme, and of the Lords Supper, with Page  79 other Articles, who being obstinate, and not to be reclaimed, the King comman∣ded they should be marked with a hot iron in the forehead, and be whipped, which punishment they tooke patiently, their Captaine (called Gerard) going before them singing, Blessed are ye when men hate you. After they were whipped, they were thrust out of doores in the Winter, where they dyed with cold and hunger, no man daing to relieve them. This King after his conquest of Ireland, imposed the tribute of Peter pence upon that kingdome, namely, that every house in Ireland should yearely pay a penny to Saint Peter.

Workes of piety done by him, or by others in his time.

THis King Founded the Church of Bristow, which King Henry the eighth after∣ward erected into a Cathedrall: He also Founded the Priories of Dver; of Stoneley; and of Basinwerke; and the Castle of Rudlan: and beganne the Stone Bridge over the Thames at London. He caused also the Castle of Warwicke to be builded. Maude the Empresse his Mother, Founded the Abbey of Bordesly. In his time also Hugh Mortimer Founded Wigmore Abbey, Richard Lucye the Kings Chiefe Justice laid the Foundation of the Coventuall Church, in the honour of Saint Thomas, in a place which is called Westwood, otherwise Leses, in the Terri∣tory of Rochester, in the new Parish of Southfleete. He also builded the Castle of Anger in Essex. Robert Harding a Burgesse of Bristow, to whom King Henry gave the Barony of Barkeley; builded the Monastery of Saint Augustines in Bristow. In the tenth yeare of his Raigne, London Bridge was new made of Timber, by Peter of Cole-church a Priest. Robert de Boscue Earle of Leycester, Founded the monastery of Gerendon, of Monkes; and of Leycester, called Saint Mary de Prate, of Chanons Regular, and his Wife Amicia, Daughter of Ralph Montford, Founded Eaton, of Nunnes. In the two and twentyeth yeare of his Raigne, after the Foundation of Saint Mary Overeyes Church in Southwarke, the Stone bridge over the Thames at London, beganne to be Founded, towards which a Cardinall, and the Arch-bi∣shop of Canterbury gave a thousand Markes. Aldred Bishop of Worcester Founded a Monastery at Glocester of Benedictine Monkes.

Casualties that happened in his time.

IN the Eleventh yeare of this Kings Raigne, on the six and twentyeth day of Ia∣nuary, was so great an Earth-quake in Ely, Norfolke, and Suffolke, that it over∣threw them that stood upon their feet, and made the Bells to ring in the Steeples. In the seventeenth yeare of his Raigne, there was seene at Saint Osythes in Essex, a Dragon of marveilous bignesse, which by moving, burned houses, and the whole City of Canterbury was the same yeare almost burnt. In the eighteenth yeare of his Raigne, the Church of Norwich with the houses thereto belonging was burnt, and the Monkes dispersed. At Andover, a Priest praying before the Altar, was slaine with Thunder. Likewise one Clerke and his Brother was burnt to death with Lightning. In the three and twentyeth yeare, a showre of Blood Rained in the Isle of Wight two houres together. In the foure and twentyeth yeare, the City of Yorke was burnt, and on Christmas day, in the Territory of Derlington, in the Bishopricke of Durham the Earth lifted up it selfe in the manner of an high Tower, and so remained unmoveable from morning till evening, and then fell with so hor∣rible a noyse that it frighted the Inhabitants thereabouts, and the earth swallowing it up, made there a deepe pit, which is seene at this day: for a Testimony where∣of Leyland saith, he saw the Pits there, commonly called Hell-kettles. Also in the same yeare, on the tenth day of Aprill, the Church of Saint Andrewes in Rochester was consumed with fire. In the eight and twentyeth yeare of his Raigne, Barne∣well, with the Priory, neare unto Cambridge was burnt. In the thirtyeth yeare, the Abbey of Glastenbury was burnt with the Church of Saint Iulian. In the yeare 1180. a great Earthquake threw downe many buildings, amongst which the Ca∣thedrall Page  80 Church of Lincolne was rent in peeces the five and twentieth of Aprill: And on the twentieth of October, the Cathedrall Church of Chichester, and all the whole City was burnt. This yeare also, neare unto Orford in Suffolke, cer∣taine Fishers tooke in their Nets a Fish, having the shape of a Man in all points, which Fish was kept by Bartholomew de Glanvile in the Castle of Orford sixe mo∣neths and more; he spake not a word; all manner of meates he did gladly eate, but most greedily raw Fish, when he had pressed out the juyce; oftentimes he was brought to Church, but never shewed any signe of adoration: at length, be∣ing not well looked to, he stole to the Sea, and never was seene after. In the yeare 1188. on the twentieth of September, the Towne of Beverley with the Church of Saint Iohn there was burnt. And in this Kings time the bones of King Arthur, and his Wife Guynevour, were found in the Vale of Avalon, under an hollow Oake, fifteene foote under ground; the haire of the said Guynevour being then whole and of fresh colour; but as soone as it was touched, it fell to powder, as Fabian relateth.

Of his Wife and Children.

HE married Eleanor Daughter and heire of William Duke of Guien, late Wife of Lewis the seventh, King of France, but then divorced, but for what cause divor∣ced is diversly related; some say King Lewis carryed her with him into the Holy Land, where she carryed her selfe not very holily, but led a licentious life, and which is the worst kind of licentiousnesse, in carnall familiarity with a Turke; which King Lewis though knowing, yet dissembled, till comming home, he then waived that cause, as which he could not bring without disgrace to himselfe, and made use of their nearenesse in blood, as being Cousins in the fourth degree, which was allowed by the Pope, as a cause sufficient to divorce them, though he had at that time two Daughters by her. Being thus divorced, Duke Henry mar∣ries her, with whom it was never knowne, but she led a modest and sober life, a sufficient proofe, that the former Report was but a slander. By this Queene Eleanor he had five Sonnes, William, Henry, Richard, Geoffry, and Iohn; and three Daughters, Maude, marryed to Henry Duke of Saxony; Eleanor, marryed to Alphonso the Eighth of that name, King of Castile; and Iane or Ioane, mar∣ryed to William King of Sicilie. Of his Sonnes, William dyed young. Henry borne the second yeare of his Raigne, was Crowned King with his Father, in the eighteenth yeare, and dyed the nine and twentyeth yeare, and was buryed at Roan; marryed to Margaret, Daughter of Lewis King of France, but left no issue. Ri∣chard, borne at Oxford, in the fourth yeare of his Fathers Raigne, and succeeded him in the kingdome. Geoffrey, borne the fifth yeare of his Fathers Raigne, mar∣ryed Constance, Daughter and Heire of Conan, Earle of Little Britaine, in the foure∣teenth yeare, and in the two and thirtieth yeare dyed; leaving by his Wife Con∣stance, two Daughters, and a Posthumus Sonne named Arthur. Iohn, his young∣est, called Iohn without Land, because he had no Land assigned him in his Fa∣thers time; borne the twelfth yeare of his Fathers Raigne, and succeeded his Brother Richard in the kingdome. And this may be reckoned a peculiar honour to this King, that of his five Sonnes, three of them lived to be Kings; and of his three Daughters, two of them to be Queenes. Concubines he had many, but two more famous then the rest; and one of these two, more famous then the o∣ther: and this was Rosamond, Daughter of Walter Lord Clifford; whom he kept at Woodstocke, in lodgings so cunningly contrived that no stranger could find the way in, yet Queene Eleanor did, being guided by a thread: so much is the eye of jealousie quicker in finding out, then the eye of care is in hiding. What the Queen did to Rosamond when she came in to her, is uncertaine, but this is certaine, that Rosamond lived but a short time after, and lyes buryed at the Nunnery of God∣stw neare to Oxford. By this Rosamond King Henry had two Sonnes, William called Long-Sword; who was Earle of Salisbury in right of his Wife Ela, Daughter Page  81 and Heire of William Earle of that Country, and had by her much issue, whose posterity continued a long time: And a second Sonne named Geoffrey, who was first Bishop of Lincolne, and afterward Arch-bishop of Yorke, and after five yeares banishment in his Brother King Iohns time, dyed in the yeare 1213. The other famous Concubine of this King Henry, was the Wife of Ralph Blewet a knight; by whom he had a Sonne named Morgan, who was Provost of Beverley, and being to be elected Bishop of Durham, went to Rome for a dispensation, because being a Bastard, he was else uncapable: But the Pope refuing to grant it, unlesse he would passe as the Sonne of Blewet, he absolutely answered, he would for no cause in the world deny his Father; and chose rather to lose the Dignity of the Place, then of his Blood, as being the Sonne, though but the base Sonne, of a King.

Of his personage and conditions.

HE was somewhat red of face, and broad breasted; short of body, and there∣withall fat, which made him use much Exercise, and little Meate. He was commonly called Henry Shortmantell, because he was the first that brought the use of short Cloakes out of Anjou into England. Concerning endowments of mind, he was of a Spirit in the highest degree Generous; which made him of∣ten say, that all the World sufficed not to a Couragious heart. He had the Re∣putation of a wise Prince all the Christian World over; which made him of∣ten say, that all the World sufficed not to a Couragious heart. He had the Re∣putation of a wise Prince all the Christian World over; which made Alphonsus King of Castile, and Garsyas King of Navarre, referre a difference that was be∣tweene them, to his Arbitrament: who so judiciousy determined the Cause, that he gave contentment to both Parties; a harder matter then to cut Cloath even by a thread. His Custome was to be alwayes in Action; for which cause, if he had no Reall Warres, he would have Faigned: and would transport Forces ei∣ther into Normandy or Britaine, and goe with them himselfe, whereby he was al∣wayes prepared of an Army: and made it a Schooling to his Souldiers, and to himselfe an Exercise. To his Children he was both indulgent and hard: for out of indulgence he caused his Son Henry to be Crowned King in his owne time; and out of hardnesse he caused his younger Sonnes to Rebell against him. He was rather Superstitious, then not Religious; which he shewed more by his car∣riage toward Becket being dead then while he lived. His Incontinency was not so much that he used other Women besides his Wife, but that he used the affianced Wife of his owne Son: And it was commonly thought, he had a meaning to be divorced from his Wife Queene Eleanor, and to take the said Adela to be his Wife. Yet generally to speake of him, he was an excellent Prince; and if in some particulars he were defective, it must be considered he was a Man.

Of his death and buriall.

HE was not well at ease before, but when the King of France sent him a List of those that had conspired against him, and that he found the first man in the Lyst to be his Son Iohn, he then fell suddenly into a fit of Fainting, which so en∣creased upon him, that within foure dayes after he ended his life: So strong a Corrosive is Griefe of mind, when it meetes with a Body weakned before with sicknesse. He dyed in Normandy, in the yeare 1189. when he had lived threescore and one yeares; Raigned neare five and thirty: and was buryed at Founteverard in France. the manner of whose buriall was thus: He was Cloathed in his Royall Robes, his Crowne upon his head, white Gloves upon his hands, Bootes of Gold upon his legges, Gilt Spurres at his heeles, a great rich Ring upon his finger, his Scepter in his hand, his Sword by his side, and his face uncovered and all bare. As he was carrying to be Buryed, his Sonne Richard in great haste ranne to see him, who no sooner was come neare the Body, but suddenly at his Nostrils he fell a bleeding afresh; which though it were in Prince Richard no good signe of Innocency, yet Page  82 his breaking presently into bitter teares upon the seeing it, was a good signe of Repentance. It may not be unseasonable to speake in this place of a thing which all Writers speake of, that in the Family of the Earles of Anjou, of whom this King Henry came, there was once a Princesse a great Enchantresse, who being on a time enforced to take the blessed Eucharist, she suddenly flew out at the Church window, and was never seene after: From this Woman these latter Earles of Anjou were descended, which perhaps made the Patriarch Heraclius say, of this King Henries Children, that from the Devill they came, and to the Devill they would. But Writers perhaps had beene more compleat, if they had left this Story out of their Writings.

Men of note in his time.

OF Clergy men, there was Theobald Arch-bishop of Canterbury, Hugh Bishop of Lincolne; Richard Bishop of Winchester; Geoffrey of Ely; Robert of Bathe; Aldred of Worcester; all Learned Men, and of great integrity of life. Of Mili∣tary Men, there was Robert Earle of Leycester; Reynold Earle of Cornwall; Hugh Bigot, Robert Ferrys, Richard Lacy, Roger Mowbray, Ralph Fulger, Ranulph Gra∣nula, William Vsei,nd Baynard Baylioll; Men of great atchievements in Warre, and of no lesse abilities in Peace.

Page  83


Of his comming to the Crowne, and of his Coronation.

KING Richard, the first of that name, after his Fathers Fune∣rall, went to Roan, where he setled the state of that Province; and from thence came into England, where he was Crowned King at Westminster, by the hands of Baldwin Arch-bishop of Canterbury, the third day of September, in the yeare 1189. And herein this Prince is more beholding to Writers then any of his Predecessors: for in speaking of their Crowning, they content themselves with telling where, and by whom they were Crow∣ned: but of this Prince, they deliver the manner of his Crowning, in the full am∣plitude of all circumstances; which perhaps is not unfit to doe, for satisfaction of such as are never like to see a Coronation; and it was in this manner. First, the Arch-bishops of Canterbury, Roan, Tryer, and Dublin, with all the other Bishops, Ab∣bots, and Cleargy, apparelled in rich Copes, and having the Crosse, holy Water, and Censers carried before them; came to fetch him at the doore of his Privie-Chamber; and there receiving him, they led him to the Church of Westminster, till they came before the high Altar, with a solemne Procession. In the middle of the Bishops and Clergy, went foure Barons, bearing Candlesticks with Tapers; after whom came Geoffrey de Lucie, bearing the Cap of Maintenance, and Iohn Marshall next to him, bearing a massive paire of Spurres of Gold; then followed William Marshall Earle of Striguill, alias Pembroke, who bare the Royall Scepter, in the toppe whereof was set a Crosse of Gold; and William de Patricke Earle of Salisbury going next him, bare the Warder or Rodde, having on the toppe thereof a Dove. Then came three other Earles, David, brother to the King of Scots, the Earle of Huntington, Iohn the Kings brother, Earle of Mortaigne, and Robert Earle of Leycester, each of them bearing a Sword upright in his hand, with the scabberds righly adorned with Gold. The Earle of Mortaigne went in the midst betwixt the other two; after them followed sixe Earles and Barons, bearing a Checker Table, upon the which were set the Kings Scotchens of Armes and then followed William Mandevill Earle of Albemarle, bearing a Crowne of Gold a great heighth before the King, who followed having the Bishop of Durham on the right hand, and Reynold Bishop of Bathe on the left; over whom a Canopy was borne: and in this order he came into the Church at Westminster, where before the high Altar, in the presence Page  84 of the Clergy and the people, laying his hand upon the holy Evangelists, and the reliques of certaine Saints, he took a solemne Oath that he should observe peace, honour and reverence to Almighty God, to his Church, and to his Ministers, all the dayes of his life: also that he should exercise upright justice to the people com∣mitted to his charge, and that he should abrogate and disanull all evill Lawes and wrongfull customes, if any were to be found in the precinct of his Realme; and maintaine those that were good and laudable. This done, he put off all his gar∣ments from his middle upwards, but onely his shirt, which was open on the shoul∣drs, that he might be annoynted. Then the Arch-bishop of Canterbury annoynted him in three places; on the head, on the shoulders, and on the right arme; with Pray∣ers in such case accustomed. After this, he covered his head with a linnen cloath hallowed, and set his Cap thereon; and then after he had put on his Royall Gar∣ments, and his uppermost Robe, the Arch-bishop delivered him the Sword, with which he should beate downe the enemies of the Church: which done, two Earles put his Shooes upon his feete, and having his Mantle put on him, the Arch-bishop forbad him on the behalfe of Almighty God, not to presume to take upon him this Dignity, except he faithfully meant to performe those things which he had there sworne to performe; whereunto the King made answer, that by Gods grace he would prforme them. Then the King tooke the Crowne beside the Al∣tar, and delivered it to the Arch-bishop, which he set upon the Kings head, delive∣ring to him the Scepter to hold in his right hand, and the Rod Royall in his left hand: and thus being Crowned, he was brought backe by the Bishops and Barons, with the Crosse and Candlesticks, and three Swords, passing forth before him unto his Seate. When the Bishop that sang the Masse, came to the Offertory, the two Bishops that brought him to the Church, led him to the Altar, and brought him backe againe. The Masse ended, he was brought with solemne Procession into his Chamber: and this was the manner of this Kings Coronation. But at this solem∣nity there fell out a very dysastrous accident: For this Prince not favouring the Iewes, as his Father had done; had given a strict charge, that no Iew should be admitted to be a spectator of the solemnity: yet certaine Iewes, as though it had beene the Crowning of their King Herod, would needs be pressing in; and being put backe by Officers set of purpose, it grew to a brabble, and from words to blowes, so as many Iees were hurt, and some slaine: and thereupon a rumour was suddenly spread abroad, that the King had commanded to have all the Iewes de∣stroyed. Whereupon it is incredible what rifling there was of Iewes houses, and what cutting of their throats: and though the King signified by publike Declaration, that he was highly displeased with that which was done, yet there was no staying the fury of the multitude till the next day; so often it fals out, that great solemnities are waited on with great dysasters; or rather indeed, as being connaturall, they can hardly be asunder.

Of his first Acts after he was Crowned.

HE beganne with his Mother Queene Eleanor, whom upon her Husbands dis∣pleasure, having been kept in Prison sixteen yeares; he not onely set at liberty, but set in as great authority, as if she had beene left the Regent of the kingdom. The next he gratifies, was his brother Iohn; to whom he made appeare, how much the bounty of a Brother was better then the handnesse of a Father. For he confer∣red upon him, in England, the Earledomes of Cornwall, Dorset, Somerset, Notting∣ham, Darby, and Leycester; and by the marriage of Isabel, daughter and heire to the Earle of Glocester, he had that Earledome also; as likewise the Castles of Marle∣borough, and Lutgarsall, the Honours of Wallingford, Tichill, and Eye, to the value of 4000. Markes a yeare: an estate so great, as were able to put a very moderate mind into the humour of aspiring, of which Princes should have care. Concerning his affianced Lady Adela, it may be thought strange, that having desired her so infi∣nitely when he could not have her, now that he might have her, he cared not for Page  85 her: but the cause was knowne, and in every mans mouth; that she was now but his Fathers leavings: yet he would not send her home but very rich in Jewels, to make amends, if it might be, for the losse of her Virginity: though this was some∣thing hard on his part, when the Father had taken all the pleasure, that the sonne should afterward pay all the charges. But by this at least he made a quiet way for his marriage now concluded; and shortly after to be consummated in Sicilie with Berengaria the daughter of Garsyas King of Navarre. And now his minde is whol∣ly set upon his long intended voyage to the Holy Land, for which he thinkes not the treasure left by his Father, to be sufficient, which yet amounted to nine hun∣dred thousand pounds: but forecasting with himselfe the great charge it must needs be, to carry an Army so long a journey, he seekes to enlarge his provision of money by all the means he can devise. Not long before, Hugh Pudsey had been advanced to the Bishopricke of Durham; and now for a great summe of money he sold him the Earledome: and then said merrily amongst his Lords, Doe yee not thinke me a cunning man, that of an old Bishop can make a young Earle? From the Londoners also he drained great summes of money, and made them recompence in Franchi∣ses and Liberties, which they had not before. He made also greatsales: to the the King of Scots, he sold the Castles of Berwick and Roxborough, for ten thou∣sand pounds: to Godfryde Lucie, Bishop of Winchester, the Manors of Weregrave and Ments: to the Abbot of Saint Edmundsbery, the Manor of Mildhall, for one thousand Markes of silver: to the Bishop of Durham, the Manor of Sadborough; and when it was marvelled that he would part with such things, he answered, that in this case he would sell his City of London, if he could finde a Chapman. But the worst way of all was, that pretending to have lost his Signet, he made a new; and made Proclamation, that whosoever would safely enjoy what under the for∣mer Signet was granted, should come to have it confirmed by the new; whereby he raised great summes of money to himselfe, but greater of discontentment in his subjects. By these, and such like meanes he quickly furnished himselfe with money: and now it remained onely to consider, to whose care he should commit the government of the Kingdome in his absence; and after deliberation, he made choyce for the North parts, of Hugh Bishop of Durham; joyning in Commissi∣on with him, Hugh Baldulph, and William Brunell: and for the South parts, he ap∣points William Longshampe Bishop of Ely, and Chancellour of England, and for his greater strength, causeth the Pope to make a Legat of all England and Scotland: and for Normandy, and Aquitaine, Robert Earle of Leycester; all men eminent for prudence and uprightnesse, and which is most of all, for loyalty: and indeed to make a man fit for such imployment, all these vertues must concurre. As for his brother Iohn, he knew very well his aspiring minde, and therefore would have tied him to live in Normandy, and not to come into England till his returne; but that their Mother Queene Eleanor interceded, and passed her word for him: and that nothing might be left unprovided for, he appointed his Nephew Arthur, the sonne of his brother Geoffrey Duke of Britaine to be his Successor, if himselfe should faile. And now, Undique convenere, vocat jam carbasus auras: every man is ready to take Ship∣ping, and no stay now but for a Wind; onely some say that King Richard before his departing, calling his Lords and Knights unto him, and swearing them to be true; gave to overy of them a blew riband to be knowne by; from whence the first occa∣sion of the Order of the Garter is thought to beginne.

Of his journey into the Holy Land.

KING Richard having prepared an Army of thirty thousand foote, and five thousand horse, and having appointed to meete Philip King of France in Si∣cilie, at the latter end of Iune, in the yeare 1190. sets forward himselfe by Land to Marseillis, and there stayes till his Ships should come about; but his Navy be∣ing driven by tempest to other parts, and the King weary of long staying, after sixe weekes, he hireth shipping for himselfe and his company, and passeth for∣ward Page  86 to Messana in Sicilie, where arrived also the King of France; and not long after, his owne Navy. In this Iland the King William now lately dead, had married Iane, King Richards sister; from whom Tancred the present King with-held her Dower: and therefore though he shewed King Richard faire coun∣tenance, yet he dealt secretly with the Messanians to use all meanes to get him gone; whereupon the Messanians taking a small occasion, set suddenly upon the English, and thrust them out of their Towne: with which King Richard justly offended, who had his Campe without the Towne, prepares himselfe to revenge the affront; when Tancred sending to him, to signifie that the affront was offered without his know∣ledge, and much against his liking, so pacified him, that for the present he re∣mained satisfied; but understanding afterward, that the Messanians did but waite their opportunity till the Spring, when King Richard should be going: he resenting their intention, staies ot their leisure, but assaulting the Towne with fire and sword, in one dayes labour takes it, and had made great slaughter in it, if King Richard had not beene moved to compassion with the Messanians teares, but chiefely with King Tancreds offers; both to pay his sister Iane her Dower, and to marry his daugh∣ter to King Richards Nephew Arthur, Duke of Britaine, and to give a good part of the Portion in hand. But King Philip was not well pleased with these conditions, yet he breakes not out into open dissention, till more fuell was afterward cast upon the fire of his anger. In the Spring King Philip sayles with his Army to Ptolemais o∣therwise called Acon) which the Christians had long besieged, and with them he joynes: while King Richard taking his sister Iane, and Berengaria the young daugh∣ter of the King of Navarre with him in 190. Ships, and 50. Galleys, puts to Sea for the Holy Land, but is by tempest cast upon the Coast of Cyprus; where the I∣landers seeking to hinder his landing, he sets upon them with his forces; and in∣vading the Iland, easily subdues, and brings it under his subjection; and the King of the Coutrey being taken prisoner, and intreating King Richard not to put him in bonds of Iron, King Richard gives him his word, and keeps it, but puts him in bonds of Silver. In this Iland he solemnizeth his marriage with Berengaria, and then leaving Richard de Canvile, and Robert de Turnham, his Lieutenants in Cyprus; he passeth on to Ptolemais, which City was defended by Saladine, and had beene besieged now two yeares: when the enemy seeing and fearing the encrease of the Christian forces, propounds conditions, upon which accepted, they deliver it up in August, the yeare 1192.

At the taking of this Towne there fell out an accident, seeming an honour to King Richard for the present, but proving a disgrace, at least a great trouble and charge to him afterward. For Leopold Duke of Austria had first set up his Co∣lours upon the wall, which King Richard caused to be throwne downe, and his owne to be set up; but this was no place to stand a quarrelling, it came not to the reckoning till some time after. When Ptolemais was taken, Saladine fearing the Christians further proceeding, dismantles all the best Townes that were neare it: as Porphyria, Caesarea, Ascalon, Gaza; but of Ioppa King Richard takes a care, and placeth in it a Colony of Christians. For Ioppa is a City of Palestine, that was built before the Floud; and hath belonging to it a Haven of great convenience. And now the King of France, though valiant enough himselfe, yet thinking his owne great acts to be obscured by greater of King Richards; he beganne, besides his old hating him, now to envie him. For indeed emulation when it is in Vertue, makes the stronger knot of love and affection: but when it is in Glory, it makes a separation, and turnes into the passion of envie and malice; and so did it with King Philip, who pretending the aire of the Countrey did not agree with his body; but was indeed because the aire of King Richards Glory did not agree with his minde; obtained King Richards consent to returne home, swearing first solemnly, not to molest his Territories in his absence. But this fell out for the present enterprise most unsasonably: For the departure of the King of France, though it diminished not much the strength; (for he left Od, Duke of Burgundy in his place) yet it dimini∣shed much the shew of assistance: and indeed Saladine, who was at this time in Page  87 termes of surrendring Ierusalem; when he saw the King of Franc departed; as knowing there must needs be a conclusion, where there was a beginning, doubted not but the rest would follow soone after, and thereupon stied his hands; and grew more confident then he was before. At this time Guy of Luignan was possest of the City of Tyre, and with it, of the right of the Kingdome of Ierusalem: with him King Richard makes an exchange, that Gy should have the Iland of Cyprus which King Richard had wonne, and King Richard should have the kingdome of Ierusalem, to which Guy had a right: and upon this Title the Kings of England, were stiled Kings of Ierusalem a long time after: as likewise the posterity of the said Guy hath by this exchange held the kingdome of Cyprus to this day. Now was King Richard more hot upon taking Ierusalem then ever before, and had cert••nely taken it, but that by ill counsell diverted, because the Winter drew on: and indeed by the drawing backe of Odo Duke of Burgundie, who envied that King Richard should have the honour of taking it, he removed for that season to Askalon; after which time, the Enemy growing stronger, and the Christians weaker; all opportu∣nity of taking it was utterly lost, and they could never come to the like againe. And shortly after King Richard was advertised of the King of France his invading Normandy, contrary to his oath at his departure; which forced King Richard, much to his griefe, to conclude a peace with Saladine, and that upon conditions not very honourable for the Christians; and himselfe presently to retune home: and so sending his wife Berengaria, and his sister Iane, with a great part of his Army into Sicilie, and from thence into England: he passeth himselfe with some few in his company, by the way of Thrace, and was by tempest brought into Dalmaiae; from whence being to passe through Germany, and particularly through Duke Leopolds Countrey of Austria: he remembring the old grudge, changed his apparell, and travelling sometimes afoote, and sometimes on horsebacke, he used all meanes pos∣sible to keepe himselfe from being knowne: but destiny is not to be avoyded, for as soone as he came to Vienna, partly by his tongue, and partly by his expenses, it was presently found he was an Englishman, and withall some great man; and by and by a rumour was spread, that it was Richard King of England: who finding himselfe to be discovered, and no meanes possible to escape, he puts off his disguise, putting on his Princely apparell, and avowes himselfe: which Duke Leopold under∣standing, sent presently to have him apprehended; but King Richard refusing to yeeld himselfe to any, but to the Duke himselfe; the Duke himselfe came and led hi to his owne Palace honourably enough, but yet strongly guarded: whereof as soone as Henry the Emperour heard, he sent with great instance to Duke Leopold to send King Richard over to him, under pretence of safer custody, but with a pur∣pose indeed to be a sharer in his Ransome. And the Duke though well knowing his meaning, yet knowing withall that it was not safe for him to deny the Empe∣rour, he sent him over to him; who soone after put him into a prison he had, cal∣led Trivallis, into which no man was ever knowne to be put that escaped with life, though done perhaps to him, but in terrorem, to draw the better Ransome from him. That with which King Richard was charged, beside the wrong done to Leo∣pold, in throwing downe his Colours at Ptolemais, was the death of Conrade Duke of Tyre, whom they pretended King Richard had murthered; wherein though King Richard made his innocency appeare by the testimony of Limbeldus, who confes∣sed himselfe to have beene the author of the Marquesses death; yet the pretence served to detaine him in prison; and in prison indeed they kept him, till his Ran∣some was agreed upon and paid: which being a hundred thousand pounds, foure∣score thousand was paid in hand: whereof two parts to the Emperour, a third part to Duke Leopold: and for the rest, hostages given to the number of fifty; of whom the Bishop of Roan was one: though the hostages afterward were delivered with∣out paying the rest: for Henry the Emperour dying shortly after, his Successour had the conscience not to take it, as knowing it had beene unjustly exacted: and indeed the accidents that befell both the Emperour and the Duke Leopld, were evident demonstrations of the injustice they had done; for the Emperour shortly after Page  88 died; and the Duke Leopold, in a Tilting for solemnity of his Birth-day, fell off his horse, and so broke his leg, that to save his life, he was faine to have his leg cut off. And now after fifteen months imprisonment, King Richard is released, and returnes into England foure yeares elder then he went out; and thus ended his journey to the Holy Land. Yet one memorable accident happening to him in the Holy Land, may not be omitted; that going one day a Hawking about Ioppa, finding himselfe weary, he laid him downe upon the ground to sleepe; when suddenly certaine Turkes came upon him to take him; but he awakened with their noyse, rieth up, gets a horsebacke, and drawing out his sword, assaults the Turkes, who faign∣ing to flie, drew the King into an Ambush where many Turkes lay; who had cer∣tainly taken him if they had knowne his person: but one of the Kings ser∣van, called William de Patrellis, crying out in the Saracene tongue, that he was the King; they presently lay hold upon him, and let the King escape.

Troubles in his Dominions in his absence.

KING Richard at his going out of England, had so well setled the Govern∣ment of the Kingdome, that might well have kept it in good order during all the time of his absence; but disorders are weeds which no foresight can hinder from growing, having so many hands to water them: where occasions of distast are no sooner offered, then taken; and otentimes taken before they be offered, as was here to be seene. For King Richard had left in chiefe place of authority, Wil∣liam Longshampe, Bishop of Ely; a man who so carried himselfe, that although the things he did, were justifiable; yet the pride with which he did them was unsuffe∣rble: seldome riding abroad without five hundred, some say a thousand in his traine; not for safety, but for state: and though there were other left in authority besides himselfe, yet his power was so predominant, that he made of them but Ci∣phers, and ruled all as he list himselfe. This insolency of governing was soone distasted by many, and specially by Iohn the Kings brother, who counting the great∣nesse of his Birth an equall match at least with any substitute greatnes, affronted the Bishop in the managing of affaires, in such sort, that while some adhered to the one, and some to the other; the Kingdome in the meane time was in danger to be rent asunder, till at last the Bishop finding himselfe too weake, or at least fearing that he was so; but rather indeed deposed from his authority by the Kings Letters, and the Arch-bishop of Roan put in his place, thought it best for him to flie the Reale: wherupon for his greater safety, disguising himselfe in womans apparell, and carry∣ing a Webbe of Cloath under his arme, hee sought in this manner to take Ship∣ping and passe the Sea. But being discovered and knowne, the women in revenge of the abuse done to their cloathes, in making them his instruments of fraude; fell upon him, and so beat him, that it might have beaten humility into him for ever af∣ter. This disgrace made him glad to get him into Normandy, his native Countrey, where to little purpose he wooed King Richard and Queene Eleanor for reparation. But this was but a sport in comparison of the mischiefes done in Normandy by Philip King of France: for first he invades Normandy, where he takes many Towns, and amongst others Gysorts, and drawes the Kings brother Iohn to combine with him, promising to assist him in winning the Kingdome of England, and to have his sister Adela, whom King Richard had repudiated to be his wife; with which pro∣mise Duke Iohn had beene ensnared, if his Mother Queene Eleanor had not dis∣swaded him. But in England Duke Iohn tooke upon him as King, perswading the people that his brother King Richard was not living; and indeed it was easie to remove, the knowing him to be a prisoner, to the affirming him to be dead; but such was the faithfulnesse of the Arch-bishop of Roan, and other the Princes of the Realme to King Richard, that they opposed Duke Iohn, and frustrated all his practi∣ses: and the Bishop of Ely had told him plainely, that though King Richard were dead, yet the succession in the kingdome belonged not to him, but to Arthur Duke of Britaine, sonne of Geoffrey his elder brother. And in these termes King Richard found his State when he returned from the Holy Land.

Page  89

His Acts and Troubles after his returning from the Holy Land.

AT his comming home from the Holy Land, the first thing he did; was to give his Lords and people thankes for their faithfulnesse to him in his absence, and then for their readinesse in supplying him for his Ransome. But as for his brother Iohn in whom ungratefulnesse seemed to strive with ambition, which should be the greater in him; he depriveth him of all those great possessions he had given him: some adoe he had to make sound certaine peeces which he had corrupted, as the Castles of Marleborough, Lancaster, and a Fortresse at Saint Michaels Mount in Cornwall; but chiefely the Castles of Nottingham and Tichill, which stood so firm∣ly for Duke Iohn, that they were not reduced to obedience without some bloud, and much expense. But hs greatest trouble was with Philip King of France, in whom was so ingraffed a spleene against King Richard, that he seemed to be never well but when he was working him some ill. Now therefore King Richard to make it appeare he had not left the Holy War for nothing (having first obtained in Parlia∣ment a Subsidy towards his charges, & caused himselfe to be new Crowned at Win∣chester, lest the people through his long absence might have forgotten they had a King) he departs with a hundred Ships into Normandy; but it was withall, upon this occasion: sitting one day at dinner, in his litle Hal (as it was called) news was brought him, that King Philip had besieged Vernoull, with which he was somoved, that he swore a great oath, he would not turne his face till he were revenged: whereupon he caused the wall right before him to be presently beaten downe, that so he might passe forward without turning his face; and thus in haste he goes to Vernoull, whither he was no sooner come, but the King of France made as great haste to be gone, not without some losse, and more disgrace. Here his brother Iohn submits himselfe to him, and with great shew of penitence intreats his pardon, which he readily gran∣ted; saying onely, I wish you may as well remember your fault, as I shall forget it. The King of France having left Vernoull, enters Turonia, and neare to Vindoci∣num pitcheth his Tents; thither King Richard followes him, and with his comming so affrighted him, that leaving bagge and baggage, Munition, Tents, and Treasure to a marvellous valew, he gets him gone, and glad hee was so rid of King Richard. After this a Truce was agreed upon for a yeare, which each of them longed till it were expired, as having no pleasure but in troubling one another. In this time there was a trouble at home, though not to the King, yet to the kingdome: for Ro∣bin Hood accompanied with one little Iohn, and a hundred stout fellowes more, molested all passengers upon the High-way; of whom it is said, that he was of Noble bloud, at least made Noble, no lesse then an Earle, for some deserving ser∣vices: but having wasted his estate in riotous courses, very penury forced him to take this course; in which yet it may be said he was honestly dishonest, for he sel∣dome hurt any man, never any woman, spared the poore, and onely made prey of the rich: till the King setting forth a Proclamation to have him apprehended, it hapned he fell sicke at a certaine Nunnery in Yorkshire, called Birckleys; and desi∣ring there to be let bloud, was betraid, and made bleed to death. Such another trouble, though not to the King, yet to the kingdome, fell out by reason of the Jewes: and first at the Towne of Linne in Norfolke, upon this occasion: A Jew being turned Christian, was persecuted by those of his Nation, and assaulted in the streete; who thereupon flying to a Church hard by, was thither also followed, and the Church assaulted; which the people of the Towne seeing, in succour of the new Christian they fell upon the Jewes, of whom they slew a great number, and after pillaged their houses. By this example the like assaults were made upon the Jews at Stamford; and after that at Lincolne; and lastly at Yorke, where infi∣nite numbers of Jewes were massacred; and some of them blocked up in the Ca∣stle, cut the throats of their wives and children, and cast them over the wals upon the Christians heads, and then burnt both the Castle and themselves: neither could this sedition be staied, till the King sent his Chancellour, the Bishop of Ely, with Page  90 force of Armes, to punish the offenders. His last trouble was a punishment of co∣vetousnesse, for one Guydomer having found a great treasure in the Kings Domini∣ons, and or feare of King Richard, flying to a Towne of the King of France for his safegard; was pursued by the King, but the Towne denying him entrance, and he thereupon going about the wals to finde the fittest place for assaulting it, one Bertram de Gurdon, or as others call him, Peter Basile, shot at him with a Crosse∣bow, and hit him on the arme, of which wound he died within fore dayes after, and so ended all his troubles.

Of his Taxations, and wayes for raising of money.

OF Taxations properly so called, there were never fewer in any Kings Raigne: but of wayes to draw money from the subject, never more. It is true, the first money raised for his journey, was all out of his owne estate, by selling or pawning of Lands; but when at his comming backe, he resumed the Lands into his hands agane, without paying backe the money he had received; this if it may not have the name, yet certainely it had the venome of a bitter Taxation. Likewise the feigning to have lost his Seale, & then enjoyning them to have their Grants confir∣med by a new; though it went not in the number, yet it had the weight of a heavy Taxation where it lighted. Afterward, the money raised for his Ransome, was not so properly a Taxation, as a Contribution: or if a Taxation for him, yet not by him; which was done in his absence, by the subjects themselves: and indeed no Taxations are commonly so pinching, as those which are imposed upon the subject by the subject, and such was this; for to raise money for his Ransome, ther was imposed upon every Knights Fee, 20. s. of all Lay-mens Revenues, the fourth part; and the fourth part of all the Revenues of the Clergy, with a tenth of their goods. Also the Chalices and Treasure of all Churches were taken to make up the sum. Afterward, this onely was a plaine Taxation, and granted in Parliament; that of every Plough-land through England, he should have two shillings, and of the Monkes Citeaux, all their Wooll of that yeare: And one more greater then this; and was this yeare imposed towards his warres in Normandy; that every Hide of Land, as much as to say, every hundred Acres of Land, should pay five shillings; which computed without deductions, will rise to a summe that will seeme in∣credible.

Lawes and Ordinances in his time.

HIs Ordinances were chiefely for the Meridian of London: for where before his time the City was governed by Portgraves, this King granted them to be go∣verned by two Sheriffes and a Major, as now it is; and to give the first of these Magistrates the honour to be remembred, the names of the Sheriffes were Henry Cornhill, and Richard Reyner; and the name of the first Lord Major, was Henry Fits-Allwyn, who continued Major during his life, which was foure and twenty yeares. And now beganne the City first to receive the forme and state of a Common∣wealth, and to be divided into Fellowships and Corporations, as at this day they are: and this Franchise was granted in the yeare 1189. the first year of King Richard the first.

Affaires of the Church in his time.

THe Church within his owne Dominions was quiet all his time, no contestati∣on with the Pope, no alterations amongst the Bishops, no difference betweene the Clergy and the Laity, or the Clergy amongst themselves; they all seemed to lie asleepe, till they were afterwards awakened, in the time of the succeeding King. But abroad, in his time, there was an addition of three Orders of Devotion; the Order of the Augustine Friers, called Friers Mendicants, begunne by William of Page  91Paris; then the Order of Friers Minors begunne by Saint Francis; and lastly the Orders of Friers Preachers begunne by Saint Dominick, though not confirmed till the first yeare of Pope Honorius.

Workes of Piety in his time.

VVOrkes of Piety are for the most part workes of plenty; penury may in∣wardly have good wishes, but outwardly it can expresse but little: and in∣deed all parts of the kingdome, all sorts of people were drawne so dry; by the two great occasions of his Journey and his Ransome, and afterward by other Taxati∣ons, that the richest men had enough to doe to maintaine themselves, without be∣ing at the charge to make provision for others. All workes of Piety were now for the service of the Holy Land, and therefore it may well passe, if not for a worke of Devotion, at least worthy to be remembred; that William Bishop of Ely buil∣ded the outer wall of the Tower of London, and caused a deepe ditch to be made about it, with an intention the River of Thames should have surrounded it, though it could not be effected. Onely Hubert Walter, who at one time was Arch-bishop of Canterbury, the Popes Legat, Lord Chancellour, Lord Chiefe Justice, and the immediate Governour under the King, both in Wales and England, Founded a Mo∣nastery at West Derham in Norfolke, where he was borne: begunne another at Wol∣verhampton, and finished a Collegiate Church at Lambeth.

Of his Wif and Children.

IN his Infancy he was contracted to a daughter of Raymond Earle of Barcelone, after that affianced to Adela, or Alice, daughter of Lewis King of France, yet married to neither of them; but he married Berengaria daughter of Garsias King of Navarre, whom his Mother Queene Eleanor brought unto him into Sicilie, from whence passing into Cyprus, their marriage was there solemnised: afterward, go∣ing forward to the Holy Land, he carried her and his sister Iane Queene of Sicilie along with him, where they remained till his returne home; and then sent them to passe to Sicilie, and from thence into England: but that ever she came into Eng∣land, no mention is made, neither what became of her after she parted from King Richard at the Holy Land. But children certainely he had none, either by his wife, or by any Concubine, unlesse we reckon as a Priest in Normandy did; who told King Richard, he had three daughters: and the King marvelling who they should be, seeing he knew of none he had; yes (saith the Priest) you have three daughters, Pride, Covetousnesse, and Lechery; which the King taking merrily, called to the company about him, and said; I am told by a Priest here, that I have three daughters, and I desire you to be witnesses how I would have them be∣stowed: my daughter Pride, upon the Templars and Hospitallers: my daughter Covetousnesse, upon the Monks of the Cistercian Order: and my daughter Lechery, upon the Clergy.

Casualties happening in his time.

IN his time the Towne of Mawling in Kent, with the Nunnery, was consumed with fire, and in his time the bones of Arthur the famous King of Britaine were found at Glastenbury in an old Sepulchre, about which stood two Pillars, in which letters were written but could not be read; Upon the Sepulchre was a crosse of Lead, whereon was written, Here lyth the Noble King of Britaine Arthur. Also in this Kings dayes for three or foure yeares together, there raigned so great a dearth, that a Quarter of Wheate was sold for 18. shillings 8. pence, and then followed so great a mortality of men, that scarce the living sufficed to bury the dead.

Page  92

Of his Personage and Conditions.

HE was tall of stature, and well proportioned, faire and comely of face, of haire bright abourne, of long armes, and nimble in all his joynts, his thighes and legs of due proportion, and answerable to the other parts of his body. To speake of his morall parts, his Vices for the most part, were but onely upon suspition: Incontinency in him much spoken of, nothing proved; but his Vertues were appa∣rent, for in all his actions he shewed himselfe Valiant, (from whence he had the appellation or surname of Caer de Lyon) wise, liberall, mercifull, just, and which is most of all, Religious; a Prince borne for the good of Christendome; if a Barre in his Nativity had not hindred it. The remorse for his undutifulneesse towards his Father, was living in him till he dyed: for at his death he remembred it with bewailing, and desired to be Buryed as neare him as might be, perhaps as think∣ing they should meete the sooner, that he might aske him forgivenesse in another world.

Of his Death and Buriall.

HE dyed of a wound with an Arrow in his Arme, which neglected at first, and suffered to wrankle, or as others say, ill handled by an unskilfull Chirurgeon, in foure dayes brought him to his End. But his Charity deserves to have it remem∣bred, that finding himselfe past hope of Recovery, he caused the Party that had wounded him to be brought before him, who being asked what moved him to doe this Fact? answered, that King Richard had killed his Father and two of his Bro∣thers with his owne hand, and therefor would doe it, if it were to doe againe. Up∣on this Insolent answer, every one looked the King should have censured him to some terrible punishment, when contrary to all their expectations in a high degree of Charity, he not onely freely forgave him, but gave a speciall charge he should be set at liberty, and that no man should dare to doe him the least hurt: comman∣ding besides to give him a hundred shillings for his paines. An Act that well shew∣ed he had beene at the Holy Land, or rather indeed that he was going to it. He dyed the sixth day of Aprill in the yeare 1199. when he had lived 44. yeares, Raign∣ed nine, and about nine moneths, and had his Body Buryed at Founteverard, by his Father; his heart at Roan, in remembrance of the hearty love that City had al∣wayes borne him; and his bowels at Chalons, for a disgrace of their unfaithfulnesse; others say at Carlile in England.

Of Men of Note in his time.

IN his time were famous Baldwyn Archbishop of Cnterbury, who followed King Richard into the Holy Land, and dyed there; Hubert that succeeded him; Hugh Bi∣shop of Lincolne; William Bishop of Ely, a man equally famous and infamous; al∣so Baldwyn Archbishop of Canterbury, a learned Writer in Divinity; Daniel Mor∣ley a great Mathematician, Iohn de Herham, and Richard de Herham, two notable Hi∣storians; Guilielmus Stephonides a Monke of Canterbury, who wrote much in the praise of Arch-bishop Becket; also one Richard Divisiensis, Nicholas Walkington, and Robert de Bello Foco, an excellent Philosopher. Of Martiall men, Robert Earle of Leycester; Ranulph de Fulgers; two of the B••dolphs, Hugh and Henry; three Willi∣ams, Marshall, Brunll and Mandevill, with two Roberts, Rosse, and Svevile.

Page  93


KING Richard being dead, the right of Succession remained in Arthur, Sonne of Geoffrey Plantagent elder Brother to Earle Iohn, but Iohn as thinking the title of Arthur but a Criticisme in State, and not for every ones capacity, at least in common sense not so plaine as his owne, who was the sonne of a King, and the Brother to a King, ascends into the Throne as confi∣dently as if he had no competitor: Onely Hubert Arch-bishop of Canterbury went before, and made an Oration in his behalfe, wherein seeking to doe him a courtesie, he did him indeed a wrong; for waiving his Right of Succession, he insisted wholly upon their Right of Election; where∣of would follow, that as they brought him in, so they might cast him out; of which errour when he was told, he said, he did it of purpose to make King Iohn the more carefull of his Government, by making him sensible upon what an unsure ground his Regality stood: King Iohn resented it, but seeing it to serve his turne for the present, he tooke it not ill, as knowing that his turne once served, he could afterward be his owne carver of what title he pleased; and so upon Ascension day in the yeare 1199. he was Crowned King at Westminster, with more solemnity then joy; many presaging by their countenances, and more in their mindes, that all would not long be well. It cannot be denyed, but that in morall circumstan∣ces Earle Iohn had the advantage of his Nephew Arthur; for he was a Man of yeares fit to Governe, Arthur but a Childe, not above thirteene yeares old; he a Native, at least alwayes bred up in the Kingdome, Arthur a Forrainer, and had never beene here; He well knowne both to the Nobility and the People, Arthur a stranger to both, as one they had never eene; and besides to these morall ad∣vantages, he had now added one from the Politickes, that he had gotten Posses∣sion; (of more force in the practicall part then all the former) and withall a grea∣ter then all these, if it be true which some write, that his Brother King Richard had assigned him his Successour after his decease. But yet knowing the Title at last would come to be tryed in a Court, where the Sword must be Judge; he imploy∣eth all his endevours to get this Judge to be his friend, and by all meanes possible to strengthen himselfe with Armes; and thereupon going to Chinon and Roan, he seiseth upon the Treasure which his Brother had left in those parts, and with it, gets Friends and Souldiers, the Armour of Armes. And indeed all he could have done himselfe would have done him no good, if he had not had the helpe of able Assistants, who yet assisted him no lesse for their owne ends then for his; and these were chiefly his Mother Queene Eleanor, who knew if her Grand-sonne Arthur should be King, that then his Mother Constantia would rule all; at least during his Minority, and thereby her selfe put from the Stage of all Authority; and the Arch-bishop Page  94Hubert, who also knew that if Arthur should come to Raigne, that then the Anjouyn and French should have all the best Offices, and the English wholly be neglected, as it was in the time of King William the Conquerour. And yet a greater Friend then both these, for comming to Roan, he used meanes that Walter the Arch-bishop in the Cathedrall Church with great pompe girt him with the Ducall sword of Normandy, and Crowned him with a Coronet of Golden Roses, he taking his Oath for Faithfull Administration in that Dukedome, and they their Oath for being his Loyall Subjects.

Of his troubles in contestation with his Nephew Arthur.

THough King Iohn had entred upon Normandy, and made that Province sure unto him, yet the Province of Anjou stood firme for Arthur, in observance of their love to his Father their former Prince: which also King Iohn soone after in∣vading, reduceth by Force of Armes to his Obedience. And now Constantia the Mother of Prince Arthur, finding King Iohn too powerfull an adversary, and no likelihood for her party, to be able long to stand out against him without further assistance, conceives it her best way to have recourse to the King of France, and thereupon commits her Sonne Arthur to his Tuition: who seemed to receive him with the tendernesse of a Father, and promiseth to assist him with his uttermost Forces, in the recovery of his Right both in France and England. Here we may observe upon what hinge the affection of the Kings of France was used to turne. For in King Henry the seconds time, King Lewis of France was so great a Friend to his Sonne Richard, that by all meanes he would helpe him to get the kingdome from his Father; Afterward when Richard was King, then Philip King of France, was so great a Friend to Iohn, that by all meanes he would helpe him to get the king∣dome from his Brother; and now that Iohn is come to be King, he is presently growne so great a Friend of Arthur, that by all meanes he will helpe him to get the kingdome from his Unkle; and no doubt, if Arthur should ever have come to be King, he would have beene as ready to helpe any other to get the kingdome from him: by which it appeares, that it was not the Persons of the Men they either hated or loved, but that they were alwaies jealous of their growing too great; and indeed this ballancing of States keepes Princes affections alwayes in suspense, and never suffers the Glasse of their Love or Hate, to make a true Reflection. A∣bout this time William King of Scots came to London to visit King Iohn, and there did homage to him for his kingdome of Scotland, though some say, but onely for the Counties of Northumberland and Cumberland, but being required ayde a∣gainst the French, he excused himselfe, saying, he could not doe it without consent of his kingdome, and so returned home.

And now Philip King of France having undertaken the protection of the young Prince Arthur, with a mighty Army enters Normandy, takes many of the best Townes, and pursuing his Victories, enters the Province of Anjou also, and re∣covers it from King Iohn, which he the yeare before had gotten from Prince Ar∣thur. Upon this King Iohn makes a Journey into Normandy, accusing King Phi∣lip for breaking the Truce, which formerly he had made with King Richard for five yeares; but when he should come to make his Accusation good by Armes, he falleth to Treaties, and obtaineth a new Truce for fifty dayes: with which new Truce, Baldwyn Earle of Flanders, who had professed himselfe of that side, was not well pleased; and thereupon commeth to King Iohn to Roan, and entring a new League with him, they there consult how to proceed, when the fifty dayes should be expired. This consultation the King of France understood; and there∣upon both sides prepare for warre, but at the end of the Truce, both sides seemed to relent, and divers meetings were had for Treaties of Peace, and in conclusion, King Iohn more desirous of Peace then was for his Honour, agreed to these Conditions; that his Nice Blanch, Daughter of Alphonsus King of Castile by his Sister Eleanor, should marry with Lewis King Philips Sonne, who should have with Page  95 her in Dower, besides thirty thousand Markes in money, all those Cities, except onely Angiers, which the French before that time had taken, which were many and very great: and his Peace thus made, he returnes into England with great joy, but was not with like joy received of the English Lords, who counted themselves dishonoured, in the dishonourable Conditions he had made; and Baldwyn Earle of Flanders also, when he saw the poore spiits of King Iohn, to descend to such base Conditions; left his Party, and entring League with the King of France, dispo∣sed himselfe for the Holy Warre.

But King Iohn having now gotten a Vacation, and a time of ease, which agreed much better with his nature then Warre, sets his minde wholly upon pleasures; and for maintaining his pleasures, upon seeking after profit, which he pursues by all manner of injustice, under the name of Prerogative; and with such violence, that when his Brother Geoffrey Arch-bishop of Yorke, in the dutifulnesse of a Coun∣sellour, advised him not to take such unlawfull courses, he most unworthily tooke from him all he had, and it was a yeares worke for all the Arch-bishops friends to pacify his anger. In the necke of this injustice, he commits another, he procures a divorce from his Wife Avis, the Daughter of Robert Earle of Glocester, onely for being of kinne to him in the third degree, and by advice of the King of France, marries Isabell Daughter and Heire of the Earle of Angoulesme, Affianced before to Hugh le Brun Earle of March; and shortly after brings her with him into Eng∣land, where he and she together, are both Crowned at Canterbury. And here the Earles and Barons of the Realme, being all summoned to attend the King into France at Whitsontide following; they all by a generall consent send him word, that unlesse he would restore them their Rights and Liberties, they would doe him no service out of the kingdome. But what it was that made the Lords more violent in pressing their Demands at this time then before, no Writers of these times doe sufficiently deliver: Onely some of them speake scatteringly of certaine oppressi∣ons (besides the generall Grievance for Exactions) lately offered to some of the Lords, one to the Earle of Chester, whom he would have banished, onely for ad∣vising him to leave his cruelty and incontinency: Another, a pursuite in Love to a Daughter of Robert Fits-Water, called Maude the Faire, who not consenting to the Kings lust, a messenger was sent to give her poyson in a potched Egge, where∣of she dyed: And a third, offered to William de Brawse and his Lady, for a rash word spoken; for when the King sent to have de Brawses Sonne delivered him for a pledge, the Lady answered, We shall doe well indeed to commit our Sonne to his keeping, who kept so well his owne Nephew Prince Arthur. This rash word cost de Brawse his Country, and his Lady and their Son their lives, both of them being famished to death in Prison. For, though these directly were but particular Grievances, yet reflectingly they were generall, what one suffered all might; but whether any of these, or all of these together, were Ingredients to make a Com∣pound of violence in the Lords at this time, or whatsoever was the true cause, this was plainely the effect, that unlesse the King would restore their liberties, they would not follow him out of the kingdome. But notwithstanding this refusall of his Lords, he passeth over with his Queene into Normandy, and from thence to Pa∣ris, where the King of France receives them with all complements of Love and a∣mity. But now Hugh Earle of March, resenting the injury done him by King Iohn; in taking away his affianced Wife, joynes with Prince Arthur, and the King of France also, for all his faire shew of amity lately made, joynes with them, as having sometime before marryed his youngest Daughter to Prince Arthur, and these with their Forces joyned, invade first the Turones, and then the Anjovins: of which Province Queene Eleanor the Kings Mother was left Regent, who there∣upon betakes her selfe to Mirabell the strongest Towne of those parts, and sends to her Sonne King Iohn, acquainting him with the danger she was in, aud requiring his speedy succour. When in the meane time Prince Arthur takes the City, and in it his Grand-mother Queene Eleaor, whom he used with greater reverence and respect then she expected. But King Iohn at the hearing hereof, was so moved, Page  96 calling the French King ungratefull and perfidious for succouring Prince Arthur, contrary to his League, that studyng presently the Art of Revenge, he fell upon a stratagem, of all other the most prudent against an Enemy: For a Surprise in Warre is like to an Apoplexy in the Body, which strikes without giving warning for defence: And this Stratagemme at this time King Iohn put in practise, for tra∣velling night & day with indefatigable labor, he came upon his enemies before they were aware, and setting upon them unprovided, it was rather an execution then a battell; and they who remained unslaine were taken prisoners, amongst whom Prince Arthur himelfe, who committed presently to the custody of Robert de Veypont in Ro∣an, lived not long after whether it were that attempting to make escape, he fell down from the wals of his Prison, and was drowned in the River Seyne, as some say; or whether it were, that through anguish of minde he fell sicke and dyed, as others say; or whether indeed he wre made away by King Iohn, as the common fame went; Certaine it is, that he survived his imprisonment but a very few dayes. But though he were gone, yet his sister Eleanor, a preceding Competitor to King Iohn, was still remaining: Her therefore, at this time also King Iohn seiseth upon, and commits her in safe custody to Bristow Castle, where, after she had lived long, she dyed.

Of his Troubles after the death of his Nephew Arthur.

KIng Iohn being now freed from his Competitor, one would thinke he should have ended all his troubles, but like a Hydraes head, they rather multiplyed upon him: For they who had beene so ready to assist Prince Arthur in his life, were now as ready to revenge his death. And first, Constance his Mother comes to King Philip, with open exclamations against King Iohn, accusing him with the murther of her Sonne, and with all the instance of Teares and Intreaties, solicites him to revenge it. Hereupon King Philip summons King Iohn to appeare at a day, and because he appeared not according to the tenure of his Homage, it was decreed against him, that he had forfeited all the property of his Estate in France, and thereupon King Philip with mighty Forces invades his Territories, takes ma∣ny Townes of principall consequence, while King Iohn lived idle at Ran, no more regarding it then if it had not at all concerned him; and when some of his Lords seemed to marvell what he meant to suffer the French to rob him of such goodly Cities: You say true indeed, (saith he) for it is but Robbery, and within a few dayes you shall see, I will make him to restore them backe with usuy. In this slighting humour he returnes into England, where he lookes not after the le∣vying of Souldiers, or the raising of an Army, as this case required, but continues his old course for raising of money, accusing sometimes one of his Lords, some∣times another, as 〈◊〉 it wre their fault that he had lost these Townes in France and upon 〈…〉 made many of them pay great summes of money, which brought 〈…〉 into hatred at home, but into contempt abroad; for the King of 〈◊〉n•••standing his unworthy courses, proceeds more violently in his Invasins 〈…〉, getting Falai, Damfrnt, and all the good Townes of Normandy, but onely Roan, and at last, though Ran was a Towne strongly for∣tifyed with Walls, and more strongly with the faithfull hearts of the Inhabiants, yet finding no hope of succour from King Iohn, it was forced for want of Victu∣als to submit it selfe to the King of France, whose example all the other Cities fol∣lowed; and so all Normandy returned to the subjection of the French, after three hundred and sixteene yeares that Roll the Dane had first possest it. It was now the yeare 1205. and the fourth of King Iohns Raigne, about which time, the two props of his Estate, or rather indeed, the two Bridles of his intemperancy, dyed, his Mother Queene Eleanor, whose vertues had oftentimes qualifyed the vices of her Sonne; and Hubert Arch-bishop of Canterbury, who repented him at his death of nothing more, then that he had beene an Instrument of bringing him to the Crowne.

Page  97And now King Iohn being a Substantive of himselfe, hath a devise in his head to make his subjects as willing to give him money as he was to have it: for know∣ing the great discontentment they all had for his losses in France; he gives it out, that he would presently rais an Army, for recovery of those losses, if he might have money to goe about it: whereupon, never was money given with more alacri∣ty; and as soone as he had it, he instantly went to Portesmouth, and there took Ship∣ping before it was possible for his Lords and others to be in readinesse to accompa∣ny him; and sayling forward some certaine Leagues into the Sea, upon a sudden he returnes backe againe, and then laies the fault upon his Lords, that had not fol∣lowed him; and for this backwardnesse of theirs, imposed afterwards great Fines upon them; by which meanes he got money no lesse by pretence of his not go∣ing, then he had done before by pretence of his going. About this time died Geoffrey Fits-Peter Justitiar of England, who while he lived kept the King in some awe, in so much, as hearing he was dead, he swore by the feete of God, that now at length he was King of England; and with great rejoycing said to some Lords about him: Now when this man comes into Hell, let him salute the Arch-Bishop Hubert, whom certainely he shall finde there. But Philip, King of France, inten∣ding to leave the English nothing on that side the Sea, invadeth Chinon, and takes it; and in it the valiant Captaine Roger Lacie, which had given a period to King Philips victories, had not Guido the husband of Constantia Prince Arthurs Mother revolted to King Iohn; who with his assistance once againe leavies an Army, be∣siegeth Mount Auban, a Castle thought impregnable, and within fifteene dayes takes it, which Charles the Great could not get with his seven yeares siege: where so great a number of French Lords were taken prisoners, that King Iohn sent a Ca∣talogue of their names into England, for a memoriall of so great a victory. After this, he taketh the strong Towne of Angiers, and utterly defaceth it; for which af∣terward he was sorry, as being the Towne where he was borne. But now when the two Kings were ready to meete, and to give battell, intercession was made by friends of both sides, and thereupon a Peace concluded for two yeares: and King Iohn returned into England.

King Iohn being returned, performes no lesse worthy acts at home, then he had done in France: for first he invades the Borders of Scotland, and brings Alexander King of Scots to doe him homage; and then understanding many of the Irish to be revolted, he passeth over to Dublin, and reduceth them to his obedience; and then placing Iohn Bishop of Norwich Governour there, he returnes into England; where passing through Wales, he subdueth certaine Rebels there, and takes eight and twenty children of the best Families, for pledges of their future loyalty; but not long after, hearing they grew mutinous and rebelled againe, he was so incensed, that he would not goe to dinner till he had seene those twenty eight children to be all hanged before his face: so inconsiderate a thing is the desire of revenge, that it makes no difference betweene innocency and guiltinesse; though indeed a thing oftentimes must be done for example, which considered in it selfe, would be for∣borne.

And it was the yeare 1214. and the fourteenth of K. Iohns Raign, when he going to Angiers, strongly repaires it; and the Province of Poictou revolted to him; which Lewis King Philips sonne understanding, comes upon them with a mighty Army, and using much severity upon the Authors of the revolt, takes prisoners, Rey∣nold Earle of Boleigne, and William Earle of Salisbury, with many others of King Iohns Captaines, and defeateth his whole Army: whereof when King Iohn was certified, he grew in a manner desperate, and as a man dejected, makes a new Truce upon any conditions with the King of France, and returnes into England; where he findes a worse businesse ready to entertaine him: for the Lords of the Realme having often required their ancient Rights and Liberties; and finding nothing but delusions, endure no longer to be abused; but meeting at Saint Edmundsbery, they there conferre how they may finde a remedy to redresse this evill; and at lat concluded to goe to the King themselves in person, and make their Demands; Page  98 whereof a Charter was produced, that had beene formerly granted in King Henry the firsts time: whereupon comming to the King after Christmas, lying then in the New Temple, and acquainting him with their Demands; he gives them this faire Answer, that within a few dayes he would give them satisfaction; and causeth the Bishops of Canterbury and Ely, with William Marshall, Earle of Glocester, to passe their words for him, that it should be performed. But the King meaning nothing lesse then to doe as he said, fals presently a leavying of Souldiers; which the Lords understanding, they also doe the like; and going to the Bishop of Canterbury, de∣liver him a Copy of their Demands, and require the Kings Answer. But the Bishop shewing it to the King, and humbly intreating him to give the Lords a satisfactory Answer: he swore a great Oath, they might as well demand the Kingdome, and that he would die before he would yeeld to any such demands. Whereupon the Lords (knowing now what they were to trust to) fall to besiege Northampton, and after that, Redford, which is yeelded to them; and withall they are sent to by the Londoners, to signifie their readinesse to joyne with them. At this time the King was at Windsor providing an Army, but hearing the Londoners were joyned with the Lords, he thought it no good way to proceed by force, but rather by fraud; and thereupon sends to the Lords, that if they would come to him to Windsor, he would grant their demands. The Lords comming thither, but in a Military manner, (for they durst not trust his word) the King saluted them all kindly, and promised to give them satisfaction in all they demanded; and so in a Meadow betweene Wind∣sor and Stanes, called Running-meade, he freely consented to confirme their former Liberties; and was content some grave Personages should be chosen to see it per∣formed. But the next day, when it should be done, he gets him gone to South-ham∣pton, and from thence to the Ile of Wight; where advising with his Councell, what in this case was fittest to be done: It was concluded he should send to the Pope, to acquaint him with this mutiny of the Lords, and to require his help: while the King in the meane time lived skulking up and downe in corners, that no man might know where to find him; or which is worse (as some write) roving about and practising Piracy. And now the Lords beginne to suspect fraud, when shortly after the Kings Messengers, who were Walter and Iohn, Bishops of Worcester and Norwich, returne with the Popes Decree; which was, that the Kings Grant to the Lords should be void: with this Decree, the King after three moneths that he had staied in the Ile of Wight, comming backe to Windsor, acquaints the Lords; but they accusing the Messengers for false informing the Pope, and the Pope also for making a Decree without hearing both sides, betake them to Armes, and sweare by the holy Altar to be revenged for this Iudification and injurious dealing. The King finding the Lords nothing moved with the Popes Decree, sends againe unto him, to acquaint him with it: who mightily incensed to have his Decree so sleighted, adjudgeth them all to be held as enemies of Religion; and gives power to Peter Bishop of Winchester, and to the Abbot of Reading to Excommunicate them. In the meane time the King had sent the Bishop of Worcester, Chancellour of England, and others with his Seale, to hire Souldiers from the parts beyond the Seas; who returned shortly after, bringing along with him out of Poicto and Glasconie, Savery de Malcon, Geoffrey and Oliver Btvile, brothers; & under their conduct so great a rabble, that with these Forces, within halfe a yeare the King had gotten all the Castles of the Barons, to the borders of Scotland. And now he divides his Army, committing part of it to his brother William, Earle of Salisbury, and others, to set upon London; and with the other part he goes himselfe into Yorkshire, where most of the Lords had Possessions, which in most cruell manner he destroyeth with fire and sword. The Lords being thus on all sides distressed, resolve upon a course, neither honourable nor safe; yet such as necessity made seeme both: they send to Philip King of France, requiring him to send over his sonne Lewis to their aide, and promising they would submit themselves to be governed by him, and take him for their Soveraigne. To this mo∣tion of the Lords, King Philip was as forward as themselves; which King Iohn understanding, sends againe to the Pope, requiring him to use his authority to stay Page  99 the King of France from comming. But King Philip, though much regarding the request of the Pope, yet nothing so much as the acquest of England; with all speed provides an Army, and with a fleete of sixe hundred sayle sends over his sonne Lewis; who passing into England, landeth at Sandwich, whither many of the Lords and others resort unto him; and giving Oaths of Allegeance, joyne them∣selves with him. King Iohn at this time was at Dover, but not daring to stay there for feare of the enemy, he commits the Castle to Hubert Burgh; and goeth himselfe to Canterbury, and from thence to Winchester in manner of a flight; which Prince Lewis understanding, goeth straight to London, and by a plausible Oration makes that City sure unto him: and thither come to him the King of Scots with an Army of choyce Souldiers, as also the Earles, Warren, Arundel, Salisbury, with many others. And now Prince Lewis passeth all the Countrey over without resistance, but not without infinite outrages committed by his Souldiers, which it was not in him to hinder: and then comming to Norwich, he takes that City easily, but Dover cost him a longer siege, as being defended by the valiant and loyall Captaine Hubert Burgh. In this meane while King Iohn finding his enemies imployed in these diffi∣cult sieges; sends about and gathers a rabble of all raskall people to him, and with them runneth over all the Countrey, spoyling and killing in most barbarous man∣ner; and now was the kingdome made the Stage of all miseries of rapine and cruelty: two Armies in it on foote at once, each of them seeking to prey upon the other, and both of them upon the Countrey. But the King comming to Wall∣poole in Norfolke, where the Washes were to be passed over, he sendeth one to search where the Foord was passable, and there himselfe with some few passed over, but the multitude, with all the cariages, passing without orde, they cared not where, were all drowned; with which dysaster, the King through anguish of minde fell into a Feaver, whereof within a few dayes he died. And here was an end of all the trou∣bles of this King: In whom it is observable, that loving his case so well as he did, he should runne voluntarily into such troubles, especially at home, upon so small occasions as he did; but it should seeme there is no greater hinderance to men for accomplishing their will, then their owne wilfulnesse.

Of his Taxations.

TO speake of his Taxations, it may not unproperly be said that it was but one continued Taxation all his Raigne through; yet to divide it into parts: his first was the Taxation of three shillings upon every Plough-land through the king∣dom, to pay the thirty thousand Markes, for his Neece Blanches Portion; and to mend this Taxation, he seiseth upon all the Temporalties of his brother Geoffrey Arch-bishop of Yorke, for opposing it; and for a continuation, he makes a progresse shortly after into all the North parts, where he exacts great Fines of offenders in his Forests. Very shortly after solicited by the Popes Legate, he grants a Subsidy of the fortieth part of al his subjects Revenues for one year, to succor the Holy Land. Short∣ly after this, he chargeth his Earls and Barons with the losses he sustained in France; & thereupon Fines them to pay the seventh part of all their goods: neither spared he the Church, or the Commons in this Imposition. Before this year is ended another Leay is made at a Parliament in Oxford, wherein is granted two Markes and a halfe of every knights Fee, for Military aide; neither are the Clergy exempted from paying their part: and before another yeare is out, another Imposition is laid of the thirteenth part of all movables and other goods, both of the Clergy and Laity. It may be reckoned amongst his Taxations, that when the Monkes of Can∣terbury had displeased him about the election of their Arch-bishop, he seised upon all their goods, and converted them to his owne use: and presently after this, upon the like displeasure, he deputes many Bishopricks, Abbeys, and Priories into the hands of Lay-men, and confiscates all their Revenues. To these may be added that he tooke eleven thousand Markes of Silver of the King of Scots for granting him Peace. Adde to these also great summes of money exacted and gathered from Page  100 the Iewes, among whom there was one that would not be ransomed, till the King caused every day one of his great teeth to be pulled out by the space of seven dayes, and then he was content to give the King tenne thousand Markes of Silver, that no more might be pulled out. Adde to these, that at his returne out of Ireland, he summoned all the Prelates of the kingdome to appeare before him; of whom he extorted for their redemption, the summe of an hundred thousand pounds Ster∣ling. Adde lastly to these, that at his returne out of Wales, he exacts of every knight that attended him not in that expedition, two Markes.

Of his Lawes and Ordinances.

HE was the first that appointed the Formes of Civill Government in London and other Cities, endowing them also with their greatest Franchises. The first that caused Sterling money to be here Coyned; The first that ordained the Ho∣nourable Ceremonies in Creation of Earles; The first that setled the Rates and Measures for Wine, Bread, Cloath, and such other necessaries of Commerce The first that planted English Lawes and Officers in Ireland; The first that enlarged the Royall stile with Lord of Ireland, and both annexed that kingdome, and fastned Wales to the Crowne of England.

Affaires of the Church in his time.

AFter the death of Hubert Arch-bishop of Canterbury, the Monkes of th•• Co∣vent secretly in the night Elected one Reginold their sub-prior to succeed him; and caused him to goe to Rome for confirmation: but afterward doubting how the King would take it, being done without his knowledge, they crave leave of the King to chuse a fit man, the King is content to allow them the Election, but re∣quires himselfe to have the Nomination, and thereupon commends unto hem Iohn Grey Bishop of Norwich, whom he specially favoured, and accordingly the Monkes Elect him. But the matter being afterward referred to the Pope, which of these two Elections should stand good, after many Allegations of both sides, the Pope to shew himselfe indifferent to both, disallowes them both, and nominates a third man, one Stephen Lancthon, Cardinall of Saint Chrysogone, an Englishman borne, and a man of great learning. The Monkes admit him, but the King op∣poseth it: and now, as it were, a Prize began to be played between the two Swords, the Spirituall and the Temporall: but he that used the Spirituall Sword, proved so much the better Fencer, that he disarmed the other, and tooke away his temporall Sword from him. It is true, in the first Venue, the King gave the Pope as good as he brought; for as the Pope threatned the King to excommunicate him, and to interdict the kingdome; So the King threatned the Pope to nullifie his Authority, and to banish Clergy men out of the Realme. In the second Venue, as the Pope acted as much as he had threatned; (for he interdicted the ingdome) So the King performed as much as he had spoken; (for he drove the Monkes ou of their Cloy∣ster) yet at last when Pandlphus the Popes Legat came into England, and made appeare to the King in what great dngers he stood; First of the King of France, by Invasion; and then of his owne Subjects, by Rebellion; for both which, there was no other helpe but Reconcilement with the Pope; he so touched him to the quicke, that he made him leave his great words, and fall to asking forgivenesse. So as taking off the Crowne from his head, he laid it downe at Pandlphus fete, to be disposed of, as the Pope should please. And Pandulphus stucke not to ••ke up his Crowne, and to keepe it three or foure dayes in his hands before he restored it; and did not then neither, but upon condition that he nd his Successours shold hold the kingdome of the See of Rome, at the annuall tribute of thousand Markes. And all those three or foure dayes, in which Pandulphus kept the Crowne, it might be truely said, the kingdome was without a King. And upon this, no doubt it was that Peter an Her••te in a Propheticall Rapture had given out some time be∣fore, Page  101 that by Asc••sion day, there should be no King of England. Which though in some sort it was true, yet in some sort it was not true, and it was in the Prerogative of the King to make his owne interpretation: And so it cost the poore Hermite and his Sonne their lives, and they remaine as a pillar of Salt, to make men take heed of Ludere cum Sanctis; and of playing the Critickes in matters of State.

But by this meanes the kingdome was released of the Interdiction, which had continued sixe yeares, three moneths, and foureteene dayes: During all which time, there was no publique Exercise of Religion; no Churches open; no Eccle∣siasticall Sacraments administred but onely to them that were in danger of death, and baptisme to children; all that dyed were buryed like dogges, in ditches and corners, but onely such as had purchased or procured licence from the Pope.

In this Kings Raigne, Saint Dominicke continued his Preaching ten yeares toge∣ther, against the Albigenses. Also in his time Saint Francis renounced the world; and when a Priest to whom he offered it, would not take his money, he cast it a∣way and entred into a Vow of perpetuall Poverty. Also in this Kings time, was held the Lteran Councell, under Pope Innocent the Third, in which was esta∣blished the Popes power over Princes, and in matters of Faith, Auricular confes∣sion, and Transubstantiation.

Of his Irreligion.

I Need not relate a Speech of his, though very unchristian, that having beene a little before reconciled to the Pope, and then taking an overthrow in France, in great anger he cryed out, that nothing had prospered with him since the time he was reconciled to God and the Pope. Nor another speech of his, which though spoken merrily, was in good earnest very irreligious, that being on a time a hunting at the opening of a fat Bucke, he said: See how this Deere hath prospered, and how fat he is, and yet I dare sweare he never heard Masse. It is sufficient to relate one act of his, (if it be true which some write) that being in some distresse, he ent Thomas Hardington, and Ralph Fits Nichols, knights, in Embassage to Mir••∣mmalim King of Africke and Mrcco, with offer of his kingdome to him, upon condition he would come and aide him; and that if he prevailed, he would him∣selfe become a Mahometan and renounce the Christian Faith. Though some there be that ay, All thee were but false Criminations charged upon him by Monkes that did not love him. But though we believe not these things of him; yet to suffer his kingdome to stand Interdicted so many yeares together, upon so small occasion as he did, was certainely no good signe of Religion in him. Yet one Act he did, wherein he shewed a respect to Religion, by the honour he did to a Religious man: For Hugh Bishop of Lincolne lying very sicke, he not onely went to visit him, but being dead, was one of the three Kings, (the other two were, William King of Scotland and the King of Southwales) that carryed his Herse upon their shoulders, till they delivered it to the Peeres, and the Peeres af∣terward to the Arch-bishops and Bishops to carry it ino the Quire.

Workes of piety done by him, or by others in his time.

YEt did this King leave more Workes of Piety behinde him, then all his Sub∣jects that were in his time. For he Founded the Abbey of Bowley in the New Forest in Hampshire: also an Abbey of blacke Monkes in the City of Winchester, and the Monastery of Farendn, and the Monastery of Hales Owen in Shropshire: he reedified odsto and Wrxell, and enlarged the Chappell of Knarisborough. Now for his Subjects, onely Richard Prior of Bermonsey builded an House against the wall of the said house of Beronsey, called the Almary or Hospitall of Converts and Children, in honour of Saint Thomas. In this Kings time Saint Mary Overeyes in Southw••ke was begun to be builded, and the Stone Bridge over the Thames, was Page  102 by the Merchants of London finished. Also Hubert Arch-bishop of Canterbury, Founded a Monastery at West Derham in Norfolke, which upon the dissolution came to the family of the Derhams, who hold it to this day.

Of his Lawes and Ordinances.

IN this Kings time, five and thirty of the most substantiall Citizens of London, were chosen out, and called the Counsell of the City, and the King gave the City liberty to alter their Major and Sheriffes every yeare, which before continu∣ed during life. He caused the Lawes of England to be executed in Ireland, and money to be Coyned there, according to the weight of English money.

Of his Wives and Children.

KING Iohn lived to have three Wives: His first was Alice Daughter of Hu∣bert Earle of Morton, who left him a Widower without issue. His second was Isabell Daughter and Heire of Robert Earle of Glcster, by whom no issue nei∣ther, divorced from her by reason of Consanguiniy in the third degree. His third Wife was Isabel Daughter and Heire of Aymer Earle of Angoulese, Affianced be∣fore to Hugh le Brun, Earle of March: By this Wife he had two Sonnes, Henry and Richard, and three Daughters, Ioane, Eleanor, and Isabell: Henry succeeded him in the kingdome; Richard was Earle of Cornwall, and Crowned King of the Romans, and had issue Henry and Iohn, that dyed without issue: also Edward Earle of Cornwall, and others. Ioane his eldest Daughter marryed to Alexander the se∣cond King of Scots, dyed without issue: Eleanor the second Daughter (marryed to Simon Earle of Leycester) had issue Henry, Simon, Almaricke, Guy, Richard, and Eleanor. Henry slaine without issue. Simon Earle of Bigorre, and ancestour to a Fa∣mily of the Mountfords in France. Almaricke, first a Priest, after a knight. Guy Earle of Angleria in Italy, and Progenitour of the Mountfords in Thuscany, and of the Earles of the Campo Bacchi in the kingdome of Naples. Richard remaining privily in England, and changing his name from Mountford to Wellesborne, was ancestour of the Wellesburnes in England. Eleanor borne in England, brought up in France, marryed into Wales, to Prince Lewin a Griffith. Isabel his youngest Daughter, marryed to the Emperour Fredericke the second, had issue, Henry appointed to be King of Sicilie, and Margaret Wife of Albret Lantgrave of Thurine. She dyed in Childbed, after she had beene Empresse sixe yeares. He had also two naturall Sonnes, Geoffrey Fits Roy, and Richard, that marryed the Daughter and Heire of Fulbert de Dover, (who built Childham Castle) had issue by her, of whom some Families of good account are descended. Also one base Daughter named Ioane, marryed to Lewin Prince of Wales.

Of his Personage and Conditions.

HE was of Stature indifferent tall, and something fat, of a sowre and angry countenance, and concerning his conditions, it may be said, that his Nature and his Fortune did not well agree: For naturally h loved his ese, yet his Fortune was to be ever in Action. He won more of his Enemies by surprises then by Bat∣tels, which shewes he had more of Lightning in him then of Thunder. He was never so true of his word as when he threatned, because he meant alwayes as cru∣elly as he spake, not alwayes as gratiously; and he that would have knowne what it was he never meant to performe, must have looked upon his promises. He was neither fit for Prosperity nor Adversity: For Prosperity made him insolent, and Adversity dejected; a meane Fortune would have suited best with him. He was all that he was by Fits: Sometimes doing nothing without deliberation and sometimes doing all upon a sudden; Sometimes very Religious, and sometimes scarce a Christian. His insatiablenesse of money was not so much as that no man Page  103 knew what he did with it, gotten with much noyse, but spent in silence. He was but intemperate in his best temper, but when distempered with sicknesse, most of all, as appeared at his last, when being in a Feaver he would needs be eating of raw Peaches, and drinking of sweete Ale. If we looke upon his workes we must needes thinke him a worthy Prince, but if upon his Actions, nothing lesse: For his Workes of Piety were very many, as hath beene shewed before, but as for his Actions, he neither came to the Crowne by Justice, nor held it with Honour, nor left it in Peace. Yet having had many good parts in him, and especially ha∣ving his Royall posterity continued to this day, we can doe no lesse then honour his memory.

Casualties that happened in his time.

ONe Casualty we might count dysastrous, if it had not had relation to our selves: for Hugh de Bones comming to aide King Iohn with threescore thou∣sand out of Britany and Flanders, by misfortune at Sea were all Drowned, to whom the King had granted Norfolk and Suffolk for the people he brought with him to In∣habit. In this Kings time were great thunders and lightnings, and showers with hail∣stones as big as Goose-Egges. Fishes of strange shape were taken in England, armed with helmets and shields, and were like unto armed knights, saving that they were farre greater in proportion. About Maidestone in Kent a certaine Monster was found strucken with the Lightning, which Monster had a head like an Asse, a belly like a man, and all other parts farre differing from any other Creature.

Of his death and buriall.

VVHen Prince Lewis of France was come into England, and was received by the Lords and by the Londoners, King Iohn with an Army went into the North parts, and comming to Wallpoole, where he was to passe over the Washes, he sent one to search where the water was passable, and there himselfe with some few passeth over, but the multitude with all his Carriages and Treasure passing without Order, they cared not where, were all Drowned. With the griefe of which dysaster, and perhaps distempered in his body before, he fell into a Fea∣ver and was let blood; but keeping an ill dyet, (as indeed he never kept good) eating greene Peaches, and drinking sweete Ale, he fell into a loosenesse, and grew presently so weake, that there was much adoe to get him to Newarke where soone after he dyed. Though indeed it be diversly related; Caxton saith, he was poy∣soned at Swi••sheads Abbey by a Monke of that Covent; the manner and cause this: The King being there, and hearing it spoken how cheape Corne was, should say, he would ere long make it dearer, and make a penny loae be sold for a shilling. At this speech the Monke tooke such indignation, that he went and put the poyson of a Toade into a cup of Wine, and brought it to the King, telling him there was such a cup of Wine as he had never drunke in all his life, and therewithall tooke the assay of it himselfe, which made the King to drinke the more boldly of it; but finding himselfe presently very ill upon it, he asked for the Monke, and when it was told him that he was falne downe dead; then (saith the King) God have mercy upon me, I doubted as much. Others say, the poyson was given in a dish of Peares. But the Physitian that dis-bowelled his body, found no signe of poyson in it, and therefore not likely to be true; but howsoever the manner of his death be uncertaine, yet this is certaine, that at this time and place he dyed, on the 19. day of October, in the yeare 1216. when he had Raigned seventeene yeares and sixe moneths; Lived one and fifty: He was buryed, his bowels at Croxton Abbey, his body at Worcester under the High Altar, wrapped in a Monkes Cowle, which the superstition of that time accounted Sacred, and a defensative against all evill Spirits.

Page  104

Of the prises of things in his time.

NEitheir is this unfit to be recorded in Chronicles, to the end comparison may be made betweene the time past and the present: as in the time of King Henry the second, a Quarter of Wheae was sold for twelve pence; a Quarter of Beanes or Oates for a groat. Neitheir is the price of Silver it selfe much lesse altered, for an ounce of Silver was then valued but at twenty pence; which is now valued at least at five shillings. Whereof Philosophers must tell the reason, for seeing scar∣city makes things deare, why should not plenty make them cheape?

Of Men of speciall Note in his time.

IN Military matters there were many famous men in his time, as Robert Fits-Roger, and Richard Mount-Fitchet, with many others; but chiefely two, whose Acts make them specially memorable: the one was Hubert Burgh, whom K. Iohn had left Governour of Dover Castle, of whom it is related, that when Prince Lewis of France came to take the Towne, and found it difficult to be taken by force; he sent to Hubert, whose brother Thomas he had taken prisoner a little before; that unless he would surrender the Castle, he should presently see his brother Thomas be put to death with exquisite torments before his eyes: but this threatning moved not Hubert at all, who more regarded his owne loyalty, then his brothers life: then Prince Lewis sent againe, offering him a great summe of money; but neither did this move, but he kept his loyalty as inexpugnable as his Castle. The other was Robert Fits-Water, of whom it is related, that King Iohn being with an Army in France, one of his knights in a great bravery would needs make a challenge to any of the French Campe, that durst encounter him in a Combat, when presently comes forth this Robert Fits-Water; and in the encounter, threw horse and man downe to the ground: whereof when King Iohn heard, By Gods tooth (saith he) he were a King indeed that had such a Champion; whereupon some that stood by, saying to him, He is Sir, a servant of your owne, it is Robert Fits-Water, whom you have banished. Whereupon his sentence of banishment was presently reversed, and the King received him, as he well deserved, into speciall favour. In matter of Literature also there lived many famous men in the Kings Raigne; as Geoffrey Vine∣saufe, Simon Fraxinus, alias Ash, Adam Dorensis, Iohn de Oxford, Colman sirnamed The wiseRichard Canonicus, William Peregrine, Alane Tewksbery, Gervasius Dorober∣nensis, Iohn Hanwill, Nigell Worker, Gilbert Holland, Benet de Peterborough William Parvus a Monke of Newburgh, Roger Hoveden, Hubert Walter, Arch-Bishop of Canterbury, Alexander Theologus, Gervasius Tilberiensis, Gyraldus Cambrensis, Iohan∣nes Devonius, Walter Mapis, Radulphus de Diceto, Gilbert Legley, Mauricius Morganius, Iohn de Fordeham, William Leycester, Ioceline Brakeland, Roger of Crowland, Hugh White, alias Candidus, who wrote an History intituled Historia Petroburgensis; Iohn de Saint Omer, Adam Barking, Iohn Gray an Historigrapher, and Bishop of Norwich; Walter of Coventry, Radulphus Niger, and lastly, Simon Thurvay, who for his pride in Learning, but more for his blasphemies against Moses and Christ, be∣came at last so utterly ignorant, that hardly he could read a letter of the booke.

Page  105


Of his comming to the Crowne, and of Acts done in his Minority.

KING Iohn being dead, his eldest soone Henry was next to succeed: who being but nine yeares old, though he were capa∣ble of having his Right, yet he was scarce cpable of under∣standing his Right: especially there being another at that tim, to whom a great part of the Kingdome had sworne Allege∣ance. But those Lords who had beene constant to the Father, notwithstanding his faults, were more tender of the son, who was altogether innocent, and whose gracious aspect gave no small hope of a better disposition. Amongst all which Lords, there was none of eminent in worthinesse, none so neare him in Alliance, as William Marshall Earle of Pembroke, who had married his Aunt; and he drawing the rest of the Lords to∣gether, with a solemne Oration in behalfe of the young Prince, so confirmed them, and so ordered the matter, that on the twenty eight day of October, in the yeare 1216. he was Crowned at Glocester, by Peter Bishop of Winchester, and Ioceline Bi∣shop of Bathe, in the presence of Guallo the Popes Legat, and many Lords and Bi∣shops: and the said William Earle of Pembroke, by a generall consent, assigned Pro∣tector of the Realme during the Kings Minority. In which place, the first thing he did, was to give notice of the new Kings Coronation to all the Countries round about; and proclaime pardon to all offenders, that within a time limited should come and submit themselves to him. In the meane time Prince Lewis of France, who at his first hearing of King Iohns death, thought himselfe then sure of injoying the Kingdome quietly, and that he should need to feare no more opposi∣tion; now that he heares of the new Kings Crowning, and that so solemnly, and with so unanimous a consent, he begins to thinke himselfe in worse case then be∣fore; and to grow jealous of the English Lords that had adhered to him, what they would doe in this new world. And indeed a conflict was already growne in their minds, which of the two Obligations should be the greater; either that of their Oath to Prince Lewis, or that of their Allegeance to King Henry. They could not but think it extreme ungratfulnes to forsake Prince Lewis, whom they had them∣selves invited to come: and they could not but thinke it extreme undutifulnesse to stand out in opposition against K. Henry, their naturall Soveraigne: and that which added no small weight to this scale, was a discovery lately made by the Viscount Page  106Melun a French Lord at the time of his death, who confessed as a matter of consci∣ence, that Prince Lewis had 〈◊〉, if once he got th kingdome, utterly to extir∣pate all the English Nobility and to admit 〈◊〉 but F••nch to any place of digni∣ty. But whether any of these reasons, or any other 〈◊〉 their motives; certaine it is, that many of them, of who were princip•••, the Earles of Arndll, Warren, Salisbury, and William, the eldest sonne of the Protectour, shrunke from Prince Lewis, and went to King Henry, as thinking no Obligation so great as Allegeance: and many againe continued constant to Prince Lewis, as thinking no Obligation so great as an Oath. And now Prince Lewis to cast the Dice of Fortune, before his enemies, though they had gotte them a Head, should gather to a head, and draw more for••s together; staying imself a Londo,〈…〉 his Lieuenant with an Ar∣my of twenty thousand, to take in as many Townes as they could; and many they tooke with small opposition: but comming to Lincolne, where though they had the Towne it selfe, yet the Castle stood o••• and ad beene defended by a Noble Lady a whole yeare before; they found such resistance, that their proceeding was there arrested; for thither came presently Wi••ia the Proectur with hs sonnWilliam, the Bishops of Winchester, alisury, and ••ester; te arles of alisbury, Ferrers and Albemarle, William de Albinet, William de Cantilupe, Falcasius, Thomas Basset, Robert Vipon, Bren de Lise, Ge••frey Lacie, and many other Barons, with all the power of the young King: who with wonderfull violence assault the City; at which time it was propounded by the French, to sally forth, and give them battell; but conceiving their Army to be greater then indeed it was (for the English had set double Ensignes to every Company, which made a shew of twice as many as they were) they forbare that course, and kept them selves within the Towne; by which meanes being cooped up and straitned i place, so as they cou••〈◊〉 make use of their Forces as otherwise they might; the were in conclusion 〈…〉, and all the principall men of the English that had adhered to Prince 〈◊〉 were taken prisoners: as namely, Sa•• Earle oWinchester, Henry de ohun〈◊〉 of Hereford, Gilbert de Gant, lately made Earle of Lincolne by Prince Lewis; 〈◊〉 Fi•••water, Richard Mount-fi••het, William Mawbry, William Beauchamp, Willi•• Maude, Oliver Harcourt, Roger de Cressy, William de Colvil, William de Ro, Robert de Rope•••y, alph Chendui Barons; besides foure hundred knights or men at Armes. Onely the Earle of Perch their Generall, being compassed about, and willed to render him∣selfe, swore he would never become prisoner to any English: and thereupon was runne thorow the sight of his Helmet into the braines, and instantly died. This was a maine blow to Prnce L••is, and th last of his battels in England; and be∣cause the City was very rich in Merchandise, the English in derision called it Lewis Faire. But Prince Lewis was not yet discouraged, for he had sent to King Philip his Father, to send him new supplies out of France; and new supplies were indeed sent: but Hubert de Bugh, Governour of Dver, being as vigilant as he was valiant, watched their comming, and in a Sea-fight defeated them all, of whom but few escaped: and now this blow at Sea was so much greater then that at Land; that where that made him onely doubt, this made him despaire, at leas made him mal∣leable, and fit to be wrought upon by composition; whereupon it was at last con∣cluded, that Prince Lewis should have fifteene thousand Markes for the charges he had beene at, and abjure his claime to any interest in the kingdome; and withall to worke his Father for restitution of such Provinces in France as appertained to this Crowne: and that when himselfe should be King, he should resigne them in a peace∣able manner. On the other part, King Henry takes his Oath; and for him the Le∣gat Guallo and the Protectour, to restore unto the Barons of the Realme, and other his subjects, all their Rights and Priviledges; for which the discord beganne be∣tweene the late King and his people. After this Prince Lewis is honourably atten∣ded to Dover, and departs out of England about Michaelmas, above two yeares after his first arrivall.

And now the kingdome is come to unity within it selfe, one King and one peo∣ple; and for a yeare or two there was little to be done, onely some few there were, Page  107 whom the corruption of the times had engendred; and who being borne in a storme, could not live in a calme: of whom the principall were the Earle of Albe∣marle, Robert de Vipount, Foulke de Brent, Brian de Lisle and Hugh de Baylil; who bustling about, got possession of some Castles: with what intention, all men knew; but with what hope of effecting their intention, no man could imagine: for being but a handfull of men to the body of the Realme; they were easily suppressed; and either brought to acknowledge their faults, or else punished for not acknowledg∣ing them. It was now the fourth yeare of King Henries Raigne, at which time William Earle of Pembroke, Protectour of the Realme, died, and was buried in the new Temple at London: in whose place came the Bishop of Winchester; and now was the King the second time Crowned, and had granted him by Parliament for Ecage, two Markes of silver of every knights Fee, for the affaires of the king∣dome, and recovery of his Transmarine Dominions, which is now designed: and Mallon de Savery, the Poictoin, with William Long-sword Earle of Salisbury, sent over to try the affections of that people; whom they finde for the most part in∣clinable to the obedience of this Crowne: but the King of France being required peaceably to deliver them; made answer, that having gotten them by the sword, by the sword he would hold them. But now the King being come to some yeares of understanding, was in a Parliament holden at London, put in minde by the Arch∣bishop of Canterbury, of the Oath he had taken for confirmation of the Liberties of the kingdome, which though oppugned by some (and spcially by William Brewer, and Hubert de Burgh, whom the King had now made his chiefe Justiciar) as having beene an Act of constraint: yet the King then againe ratified, and twelve knights or other Legat men of every Shire, by Writs were charged to examine what the Lawes and Liberties were which the kingdome injoyed under his Grand∣father; and that they should returne them by a certaine day: and here the King by Parliament resumeth into his hands such Alienations as had beene made by his Ancestors of any Crowne Land. The next yeare after, another Parliament is held at Westminster, wherein is required the fiftieth part of all the movables, both of the Clergy and Laity, for the recovery of those parts in France, with-held from the Crowne by Lewis now King, contrary to his Oath and promise made here in Eng∣land at his departure; which, though it concerned the Honour and Dignity of the kingdome, and the estates of most of the Nobility; yet would it not be yeelded to, but upon confirmation of their Liberties, which in the end was obtained, in the same words and forme as King Iohn had granted them in the two Charters be∣fore: and twelve knights are chosen in every Shire, to dispart the old Forests from the new, and the new to be laid open and ploughed, and improved to the great com∣fort and benfit of the subject; and two yeares they were accordingly injoyed.

Of his Acts after he came to be of age.

IT was now the tenth yeare of King Henries Raigne, and being about nineteene yeares of age, he claimed to take the government of the kingdome into his own hands, and no longer to be under a Protectour; and now will presently appeare the difference betweene a Prince that is ruled by good Counsell, and a Prince that will doe all of himselfe, and take no advise. For the ten yeares hee was ruled by a Protectour, were all passed, as it were in a calme, without noyse or clamour; but as soone as he tooke upon him the government himselfe, there grew presently stormes and tumults; no quietnesse either to the subject or himselfe: nothing but grievances all the long time of his Raigne. For at the Parliament now holden at Oxford, as soone as he was Crowned againe, he presently cancels and annuls the Charter of the Forests, as granted in his Nonage; and therefore he not bound to observe it: and then not using any longer the Seale which the Protectour had used, he makes a new; and causeth a Proclamation to be made, that whosoever would enjoy any benefit of Grants under his Seale, should come and have them signed by his new Seale; by which course he drew much mony from many: and this was Page  108 the first grievance. Shortly after, he commits the keeping of Barkehamstead Ca∣stle to one Walleran a Duchman, which Castle belonged to his Brother Richard Earle of Cornewall: but when Earle Richard required to have the possession as o right he ought, it was then plotted by Hubet Burgh Chiefe Justice, and the Kings chiefe Counsellor, to commit him to prison, which the Earle understanding, o at least suspecting, flies presntly to Mrleborough, where he finds William Earle Mar∣shall his vowed friend, with whom he hasens to Stamford, and there meees with the Earles of Chester, Glocester, Warren, Hereford, Ferrers, Warwicke, and diver o∣ther Barons; who all confederate together, and send to the King hat unlesse he re∣store the Castle to his brother, and o them the Liberties of Forests which he had lately cancelled at Oxford, they would seeke to recover them by the sword. Here, upon King Henry to pacifi his brother not onely renders the Castle to him but gives him besides all that his Mother had in Dower and also great possessions which the Earle of Britaine, and th Earle of Bleigne lately deceased had in England; but to the Petition of the Lords he makes a dilatory answer and this was another grievance. Not long after King Henry is perswaded by Hugh e Brun, Earle of March, who had married his Mother, to make a journey into France, for recovery of his right there but the Earle perswaded it for ends of his owne; which to have discovered, had beene no way to com••••e theme must therefore ay some co∣lours upon his worke, and it was colour enough that the action would be of great benefit to the King, if it might succeed and the likelihood of succeeding was most apparent, by reason of the great inclinaion of the people to King Henry; and their great aversnesse from King Lewis. Upon these colours, King Henry underta∣king the action, raiseth great summes of money from the Clergy and from the Londoners for redemption of their Liberties and takes the hird part of all the goods of the Iewes but when he returned home a yeare after, without having done any thing but spent his treasure and his time and that which was moe worth then both these, the lives of many Noble men and others: this was another grievance. And now King Henry bringing many P••ct••ins over with him, who had served him in his warres he was to reward them ere; which he could not doe, but by displacing and spoyle of his Officers. First therefore he calleth Ralph Bretton Treasurer of his Chamber to account, and grievously Fnes him for de∣frauding him in his Office: Then likewise is Hubert de Burgh Chiefe Justiciar, and his Chiefe Counsellour called to account, for such Treasure as passed his Office, who being further charged with crimes of Treason, flies to the Church of Merton for sanctuary; from whence, when the King commanded him to be drawne out by violence, the Bishop of London hearing of it, commanded him to be returned back to sanctuary, upon paine of Excommunication: but the King commanding him to be kept from sustenance, hunger at last enforced him to render himselfe to the Kings mercy: all his goods, which were very great, confiscate. Also Walter Bishop of Carlile is thrust out of his Office of Treasure, and William Rodon knight, from his place of Mashall of the Kings house, and all the chiefe Counsellours, Bishops, Earles, and Barons of the kingdome are removed, as distrusted and onely stran∣gers preferred to their roomes: of which course, Peter de Rupibus a Poictouin, Bi∣shop of Winchester, and one Peter de Rivalis, the Kings speciall Favorite, were said to be the Authors: and this was another grievance. The King was now about eight or nine and twenty yeares old, and a Consultation was had for a fit wife for him. There was propounded a sister of Alexander King of Scots, but it was not thought fit the King should marry the younger sister, when Hubert de Burgh had married the elder: he therefore takes one of his owne choosing, and marries Elea∣nor, daughter to Raymond Earle of Province; by which match he neither had Por∣tion by his Wife, nor strength of Alliance by friends; or if any were, it was all made vaine by distance: onely he had by her a number of poore kindred, who to his great cost, lay hanging upon him; yet was the marriage solemnised with as great charge as if he had beene to have Mountaines with her: and this was another grievance. And now is the score of these grievances called upon to be paid, for Page  109 the Lords could no longer endure so many indignities, to see themselves fleighted, and onely strangers advanced; as Foulke de Brent who held the Earledomes of Nottingham, Oxford, Bedford, and Bckingham, and others the like: and to see their persons exposed to danger, and their estates to ruine; for which no remedy could be but onely the Kings confirming their Charter of Liberties: wherein it is strange to observe upon what different grounds the King and the Lords went: It seemes the King thought, that to confirme that Charter, were to make himselfe to be lesse then a King; and the Lords thought, that as long as it was denied, they were no better then slaves and as the King could endure no diminution, so the Lords could endure no slavery; but the King might keep his owne with sitting still, the Lords could not recover their owne but by motion: and seeing their strength must be in their number, by commotion; hereupon they confederate together, and of this confedencie, Richard now Earle Marshall, upon the death of his bro∣ther William, is chiefe; who repaire to the King, and boldly shew him his er∣rour, and requires satisfaction. Hereupon the King sends presently over for whole Legions of Poictuins, and withall summons a Parliament at Oxford, whither the Lords refuse to come after this a Parliament is called at Westminster, whither like∣wise they refuse to come, unlesse the King would remove the Bishop of Winchster, and the Poictouins from the Court; and more then this, they send him word, that unlesse he did this; they would expell both himselfe and his evill Counsellours out of the Land, & create a new King. Upon this threatning, Pledges are required of the Nobility for securing of their Allegeance, and Writs a reent out to all who hold by knights service, to repaire to the King at Glocester by a certaine day; which the Earle Marshall and his associates refusing, the King without the udgement of hi Court and their P••rs, causeth them to be Proclaimed Out-lawes, seiseth upon all their Lands, which he gives to his Poictouins; and directs out Writs to attach their bodies wheresoever in the kingdome. But now of these confederate Lords, the Bishop of Winchester wonne the Earles of Chester and Lincolne with a thousand Markes; and the King had so pleased his brother the Earle of Cornwall, that he likewise left them: whereupon they withdrew them into Wales, and confederate with L••ilin Prince of Wales whither also came Hubert de Burgh, escaped out of pri∣son, and joynes with them; taking intermutuall Oaths, that no one without other should make their accord. Hereupon the King goeth himselfe in person into Wales, where not prevailing, he returnes to Glocester, imployes new forces of strangers, but all without successe. At last a Frier is imployed to perswade the Earle Marshall to submit himselfe to the King, but all in vaine; till at length a traine is laid to draw him over into Ireland, to defend his state there, being seised upon by the King; where by treachery circumvented he lost his life. Yet the King disavowes the sen∣ding of any such Commission into Ireland, protesting he never knew thereof; and laies the fault upon his Officers: an easie way for Princes, never to be found in any fault.

After two yeares affliction, a Parliament is assembled at VVestminster, wherein the Bishops admonish the King by his Fathers example, to be at unity with his people, and to remove from him strangers, and to governe the kingdome by Natives of the Realme; and by the Lawes: otherwise they would proceed by Ecclesiasticall censure, both against his Counsellours and himselfe. The King see∣ing no way to subsist but by temporising, consents to call home those Lords out of VVales; restores them to their places and possessions; removes all strangers from about him, and cals his new officers to account. Hereupon the Bishop of VVinchester, Peter de Rivalis, and Stephen Seagrave take sanctuary; but afterward by mediation they obtained with great Fines their Liberty, dearly paying for their two years greatnes. After this a Parliament is againe called, which the King would have to be kept in the Tower, whither the Lords refusing to come, another place of more freedome is appointed; in which Parliament, order is taken for removing all Sheriffes from their places, upon complaint of corruption: and here the King displaceth his Steward, and offers to take from the Bishop of Chichester then Page  110 Chancellour, the great Seale, which he refuseth to deliver, as having received it by the common councell of the kingdome; and now Pe••r de Rivali, ad Stphen Sea∣grave, are received againe into grace: by which may appeare the vici••itude of for∣tune in Princes favours. After this, in the one and twntieth year of is Raigne, another Parliament is held at London; where the King requires the thirteenth part of all the moveables as well of the Clergy as Laity; which being directly oppo∣sed, the King promiseth by oath, never more to injure the Nobility, so they would but relieve him at that present: After foure dayes consultation, he King pomising to use onely the counsell of his naturall Subjects, and protesting against the Revo∣cation lately propounded and freely granting the inviolable obsevation of their Liberties, under paine of Excommunication, a Subsidy is granted him; bu so, that foure knights be appointed in every Shie to receive and deliver the same, 〈◊〉 to some Abbey or Castle, where it may be safly kep, that if the King aile in prfor∣mance of his Grants, it may be restored to the Counrey from whence it was col∣lected: And now the King, to make a shew of true reconciliation for his part, sud∣denly causeth the Earles, VVarren and 〈◊〉, with Iohn Pits Geoffrey to be swrn his Counsellours, yet was neither of the points either for removing of strangers, or for disposing the money observed afterward by the King for the money he made bold to take at his pleasure; and for strangers, they were so farre from re∣moving, that they were drawne nearer to him: for now VVilliam Valentine; Unkle to the Queen, is growne the most inward man with him, and nothing done but by his counsell; also the Earle of Province, the young Queenes Father, a poore Prince, hath a good share of the money that was collected: and Simon de Montford, a French man borne, is entertained by the King, and preferred scretly in marriage to Eleanor the Kings sister, Widow of VVilliam Earle of Pembroke, the great Mar∣shall, and is made Earle of Leycester, by right of his Mother Avice, daughter of Blanchman, Earle of Leycester: which courses so incense the Nobility, that it put them out into a new commotion; and Richard the Kings brother becomes one of the party whom the other Lords make their spokesman to the King, to aggravate his breach of promise, and to acquaint him with all the disorders of the kingdome; with whose remonstrance the King is so moved, that after he had tried the Londoners, and found them also to partake with the Lords, he cals a Parliament aLondon, whither the Lords come armed for their own safety: where after long debating, the King taking his Oath to referre the matter to certaine grave men of the kingdome; Article are drawne, sealed, and publikely set up to the view of all, with the seales of the Legat, and divers great men: but before it came to be effected, the Earle of Cornwall, by the working of Simon Montford, hath his edge rebated, and is brought to be unwilling to meddle in the matter any more; which the other Lords seeing, they also grow cold, and so for that time it rested, and no more was done in it.

And now is the Kings turne to play his part, in using his authority, which he failes not to doe to the uttermost: for upon a small-occasion he causeth the gates of Gilbert now Earle of Pembroke (the third sonne of VVilliam the great Marshall) to be shut against him at VVinchester, whereupon the Earle retires into the North. Also Simon Norman, Master of the Kings Seale, and his greatest Favorite, is thrown out with disgrace, and his brother Geoffrey a knight Templar, is put out of the Counsell; both of them for not yeelding to passe a Grant from the King, made unto Thomas Earle of Flanders, the Queenes Unkle, of foure pence upon every sack of Wooll. And now that load enough is laid upon those of the Laity, comes a new load to be laid upon the Clergy; for the Pope nothing dainty to make use of the power he had in the King, sends over three hundred Romans, requiing to have the first Benefices that should be vacant, bestowed upon them: which seemed so unreasonable a request, and to the Clergy of England so dammageable, that it made Edmund Arch-bishop of Canterbury to give over all, and betake himselfe to a voluntary Exile in the Abbey of Pontiniac in France; yet to shew his respect to the Pope, gave him eght hundred Markes before his departure. And to lay more weight upon the Clergy, great summes are also required of them for maintenance Page  111 of the Popes warre against the Emperour: which though the Clergy opposed, and shewed many good reasons of their opposition both to the King and the Legat, yet by promises or threatnings, they were won or forced to yeeld unto it. And now comes the Earle of March, and once againe solicits the King to make another jour∣ney into France, which being yeelded to by the King, and assented to in Parliament, an aide presently was demanded towards it: but this demand was not onely oppo∣sed, but all the Kings Taxations and aides before granted, were now repeated; and thereupon an absolute deniall to grant any more. Upon this, the King comes to the Parliament himselfe in person; earnestly, and indeed, humbly craving their aide for this once: but all prevailed not, they had made a vow to the contrary: and the King is driven to get what he could of particular men, of whom partly by gift, and partly by oane, he gets so much, that he carries over with him thirty Barrels of Sterling money. This expedition had no better successe then the former, for after a whole yeares stay, the King was driven to make a dishonourable Truce with the King of France, and returne home. At his returne he puts the Iewes to another redemption, and the Londoners to another exaction; and to helpe on his charge, his wives mother, the Countesse of Provence comes now to visit him; who bringing her daughter Zanchia with her, a marriage is solemnised betweene her and Richard Earle of Cornwall, whose wife was lately dead, and he returned from the Holy warres. The old Countesse at her returne, is presented with many rich gifts, ha∣ving besides received an Annuall Pension of foure thousand Markes out of Eng∣land, for five yeares past; in consideration of a pact made, that King Henry after her decease should have the Earledome of Provence: but shortly after her returne, she disappoints him of that, and bestowes it upon her youngest daugher Beatrix, married to Charles the French Kings brother; who was after King of Naples and Sicilie so as this Countesse lived to see all her foure daughters Queenes: Richard Earle of Cornwall comming after to be elected King of the Romans. Upon thse profusions, a consultation is had for new supplies, and no way thought so fit as by Parliament; hereupon a Parliament is againe assembled at Westminster, whithr the King comes againe himselfe in person, urging his necessities, yet nothing woud be granted without the assurance of reformation and due execution of the Lawes. And here they desire to have it ordained that foure of the most grave and discreet Peeres should be chosen as conservatours of the kingdome, and sworne of the Kings Councell, both to see Justice administred, and the treasure issued; and these, or two of them at least, should ever attend about the King. Also that the Lord Chiefe Justiciar, and the Lord Chancellour, should be chosen by the generall voy∣ces of the States assembled, or else be one of the number of those foure. Besides they propound, that there might be two Justices of the Benches, two Barons of the Exchequer, and oe Justice for the Iewes, and those likewise to be chosen by Parliament. But while these things were in debating, comes one Martin, a new Legat from the Pope, with a larger Commission then ever any before, to exact upon the State; but at the same time, Letters comming from the Emperour Fredericke, to intreat that the Pope might have no more supplies out of England; the Popes Man∣date is rejected, and his Agent Martin disgracefully sent home. This businesse took up so much time, that nothing else was done in this Parliament; but onely an aide granted to the King for the marriage of his daughter to Alexander King of Scots, twenty shillings of every knights Fee; and that with much adoe, and repetition of his former aides.

The Winter following he assembles another Parliament, wherein he moves for an ayde upon a designe he had upon Wales, and to pay his debts, which were ur∣ged to be so great that he could not appare out of his Chamber for the infinite clamour of such, to whom he owed for his Wine, Waxe, and other necessaries of house: but they all to his face, refused to grant him any thing: whereup∣on other violent courses are taken, an ancient quarrell is found out against the City of London, for which they are commanded to pay fifteene thousand Markes, and Passeleve the Clerk is imployed, with others, in a most peremptory commission, Page  112 to inquire of all such Lands as had beene inforested, and either to fine the occupy∣ers thereof at their pleasure, or else to take it from them and sell the same to others; wherein such rigour was used, that multitudes of people were undone. But now to shew the King the estate of his kingdome, and the oppressions of Popes, inqui∣ry was made of the Revenues which the Romans and Italians had in England: which were found to be annually sixty thousand Markes; being more then the yearely Re∣venues of the Crowne: which so moved the King that he caused the same to be notifyed, with all other Exactions, to the Generall Councell now Assembled at Lyons; and this (with the ill usage of his Agent Martin) so vexed the Pope, that he is said to have uttered these words: It is time to make an end with the Em∣perour, that we may crush these petty Kings, for the Dragon once appeased or destroyed, these lesser Snakes will soone be trodden downe. But upon the Popes rejecting the consideration of these grievances of England, and despiing the Kings message (who he said, began to Frederize) it was absolutely here ordained, un∣der great penalty, that no contribution of money should be given to the Pope by any Subject of England: and the King for a time assents unto it, but being of an irresolute and wavering nature, and afraid of threats, he soone gave over what he undertooke, so as the Pope continued his former rapine; and though he had pro∣mised never to send any more Legats into England, ye sent he other Ministers un∣der the title of Clerkes, that had as great power as Legats, and effected as much. And now, for the other part of the State, new occasions also of complaint were offered: Peter of Savoy Earle of Richmond, comes into England, bringing with him certain Maides to be marryed to young Noble men of this Countrey, the Kings Wards, of whom Edmund Earle of Lincolne hath one, and Richard de Burgh another, and the same yeare three of the Kings Brothers by the Mother, Guy de Lusignan, William de Valence, and Athelmar Clerke, are sent over to be provided of Estates in England: also Thomas of Savoy (sometimes Earle of Flanders by Right of his Wife) comes with his sister Beatrix, Countesse of Provence the Queenes Mother, who are againe Feasted and Gifted; for which the King is tax∣ed the next Parliament in Candlemas Terme, and besides sharply reprehended for his breach of Promise, having Vowed and Declared by his Charter never more to injure the State in that kinde; also for his violent taking up of provision, of Waxe, Silke, Roabes, and specially of Wine, contrary to the will of the sellers, and many other grievances they complaine of; all which the King patiently heares, in hope to obtaine his desire, but yet nothing is effected, and the Parliament being Prorogued till Midsummer following, and the King growing more obdurate then before, it afterward brake up in discontent. But the Parliament not supplying him, he is advised to furnish his wants with sale of his Plate, and Jewels of the Crowne, being told, that though they were sold, yet they would revert againe unto him; and having with great losse received money for them, he askes who had bought them: Answer is made, the City of London. That City (said he) is an inexhaustible Gulph: If Octavius Treasure were to be sold, they surely would buy it.

And now to vexe them, he appoints a Faire to be kept at Westminster, for∣bidding under great penalty, all exercise of Merchandise within London, for fif∣teene dayes, and all other Fayres in England, and namely that of Ely: but this Novelty came to nothing; the Inconvenience of the place, as it was then, and the foulenesse of the weather, brought more affliction then benefit to the Traders. That Christmas also he requires Newyeares gifts of the Londoners, and shortly after writes unto them his Letters imperiously deprecatory to ayde him with money, and thereby gets of them twenty thousand pounds, for which the next yeare after he craves pardon of them. And notwithstanding his continuall taking up all Provi∣sions for his House, yet he lessens his House-keeping in no honourable manner. And then seeing he could get nothing of the States together, he calls unto him, or writes to every Nobleman apart, declaring his poverty; and how he was bound by Charter in a debt of thirty thousand pound to those of Burdeaux and his Gas∣coynes,Page  113 (who otherwise would not have suffered him to depart home) at his last being in France: but faling herein of Temporall Lords, he addresseth his Letters to the Prelates, of whom he findes as little reliefe; by much importunity and his owne presence, he got of the Abbot of Ramsey a hundred pound, but the Abbot of Borough had the face to deny him, though the King told him, it was more Almes to give money to him, then to a Begger that went from doore to doore. The Ab∣bot of Saint Albons yet was more kind, and gave him threescore Markes. To such lownesse did the necessity of this indigent King (through his profusion) bring him. The Iewes ever exposed to his will, feele the weight of these his wants; One Abraham, found a Delinquent, redeemes himselfe for seven hundred Markes, and Aaron another Iew protests, the King had since his last being in France taken from him at times thirty thousand Markes of Silver, besides 200. Markes of Gold given to the Queene.

But now the Lords assemble againe at London, and presse him with his promise made unto them, that the Chiefe Justiciar, Chancellour and Treasurer, should be appointed by the Generall Councell of the kingdome, but by the absence of Richard Earle of Cornwall, (which was thought to be done of purpose) they re∣turne frustrate of their desire. And now the Bishopricke of Winchester falling void, the King sends presently to the Monkes of the Cathedrall Church; to Elect his Bro∣ther Athelmar; and because he would not be denyed, he goes thither himselfe in person, and there enters the Chapter house as a Bishop or Prior, gets up into the Presidents Chaire, beginnes a Sermon, and takes his Text, Iustice and Peace have kissed each other; and thereupon useth these words: To me and other Kings who are to governe the people, belongs the rigour of Judgement and Justice; to you who are men of quiet and Religion, Peace and Tranquillity; and this day I heare you have (for your owne good) beene favourable to my request; with many such like words: whereby the Monkes finding the earnestnesse of his desire, held it in vaine to deny him, and Athelmar is Elected; but with this reservation, if the Pope allow it. Shortly after followes the memorable Case of Sir Henry de Bathe, a Ju∣sticiar of the kingdome, and a speciall Counsellour to the King who by corrup∣tion had attained to a mighty Estate, and is said, in one Circuit to have gotten two hundred pound land per annum; He is accused by Sir Philip Drcy of falsehood in the Kings Court; and the King is so incensed against him, that in the Parliament at this time holden in London, Proclamation is made, that whosoever had any Action or Complaint against Henry de Bathe should come and be heard. One of his fellow Justiciars accused him of acquiting a malefactor for a bribe. The King seeing Henry de Bathes friends to be many and strong breakes out into rage, pro∣testing, that whosoever would kill Henry de Bathe should be acquited for the deed. But afterward by intercession of the Earle of Cornwall, and the Bishop of London; the King becomes pacifyed, and Sir Henry is released, paying two thousand Markes; and after is restored to his former place and favour. The King keeping his Christ∣mas at Yorke, the marriage is solemnized betweene Alexander King of Scots, and Margaret his Daughter: to the Feast of which solemnity it is said the Arch-bihop gave sixe hundred fat Oxen, which were all spent at one meale: and besides, the Feast cost him foure thousand Markes.

About this time, the Pope solicits King Henry to undertake the Crosse, and so doth Alphonsus King of Castile, offering to accompany him in person, to rescue the King of France, who was now held Prisoner by the Souldan. And because a ran∣some collected for him in France was by tempest cast away at Sea, the Captive King offers to restore Normandy to the King of England, so he would come to his rescue. Upon this solicitation of the Pope, and the grant of a tenth of the Cler∣gy and Laity for three yeares to come; the King undertakes the Crosse, rather, it seemes, to get the money, then with any purpose to performe the Journey: which had it beene collected (saith Paris) would have amounted to six hun∣dred thousand pounds, to the utter impoverishing of the kingdome. And now the King by Proclamation cals the Londoners to Westminster, and there causeth the Page  114 Bishops of Worcester and Chichester to declare his Intentions, and to exhort the peo∣ple to undertake the Crosse and attend him: but few are moved by their perswasi∣ons, onely three knights of small note, whom thereupon the King in open view, imbraceth, kisseth, and cals his Brethren; checking the Londoners as ignoble Mercenaries: and there himselfe takes his Oath for performing it, and to set forth upon Midsummer day next. In taking his Oath, he layes his right hand on his Breast, according to the manner of a Priest; and after on the Booke, and kist it as a Layman. About this Tenth (granted by the Pope, but not by the People) a Par∣liament is called at London, where the Bishops are first dealt withall, (as being a worke of Piety) and they absolutely refuse it; then the Temporall Lords are set upon, and they answer as the Bishops: which put the King into so great a rage, that he drove out all that were in his Chamber, as he had beene madde. Then he als to perswade them apart, sending first for the Bishop of Ely, and deales with him in all kind manner, recounting the many favours he had done him. The Bi∣shop replies, Disswading him from the Journey by the Example of the King of France; and to that purpose useth many good reasons; which the King hearing, in great passion commanded his servants to thrust him out of doore, perceiving by this what was to be expected of the rest; and thereupon fals upon his former vio∣lent courses; and first the City of London is compelled to the Contribution of a thousand Markes: and the Gascoyners being upon revolt, unlesse speedy succour be sent them; generall Musters are made, and commandement given, that who∣soever could dispend thirteene pounds per annum, should furnish out a Horseman. This occasions another Parliament, wherein it seemes, the State beganne wisely to consider that all their oppositions did no good, the Kings turne must be served one way or other; therefore they agreed to relieve him rather by the usuall way, then force him to those extravagant courses which he tooke; but yet so, as the Reformation of the Government, and the ratification of their Lawes and Liber∣ties, might once againe be solemnely confirmed. And after fifteene dayes consul∣tation, to satisfie the Kings desire for his holy Expedition, a Tenth is granted by the Clergy, and Scutage, three Markes of every knights Fee by the Laity; and thereupon those often confirmed Charters are againe ratifyed, and that in the most solemne and Ceremoniall manner, that State and Religion could possibly de∣vise. The King with all the Great Nobility of England, all the Bishops in their reverent Ornaments with burning Candles in their hands, assemble to heare the terrible sentence of Excommunication against the infringers of the same. And at the lighting of those Candles the King having received one in his hand, gives it to a Prelate that stood by, saying: It becomes not me, being no Priest, to hold this Candle, my heart shall be a greater Testimony; and withall laid his hand spread upon his Breast all the time the sentence was read; which was thus Pro∣nounced, Authoritate Dei Omnipotentis, &c. Which done, he caused the Charter of King Iohn his Father, granted by his free consent, to be openly read. In the end, having throwne away their Candles, which lay smoaking on the ground, they cry∣ed out, So let them who incurre this sentence be extinct, and have no better sa∣vour then these snuffes: and the King with a loud voyce said, As God helpe me, I will, as I am a Man, a Christian, a Knight, a King Crowned and annoynted, in∣violably observe all these things: and therewithall the Bels rung out, and the peo∣ple shouted for Joy.

Yet was not all so quieted by this Grant, but that there were grievances still, whereof the first fals upon his Brother Richard Earle of Cornwall: for the King ha∣ving seven and twenty yeares before given him the Province of Gscogne, now that he had a Sonne of his owne, he would take it from his Brother, and give it to his Sonne; and the Earle refusing to deliver his Charter, it is plotted to imprison him, but he escaping out of Burdeaux, comes over into England. The King to win the Nobility of Gascogne to turne to him, promiseth them thirty thousand Markes, which they accept, so as he binde himself by his Oath and Charter to performe it. This strictnesse of theirs the King takes in ill part, and thereupon sends Sim••Page  115 Montford Earle of Leycester, a sterne man, to be their Governour, who with his insolent Government, so discontents them, that after three yeares suffering, they send the Arch-bishop of Burdeaux, with other great men, to complaine of his In∣solencies; whereupon Montford is sent for, and because the Lords tooke part with him, the King takes part with the Gascoyners; which Montford tooke so ill, that he upbraides the King with breaking his Promise: to whom the King in great rage replyed, that no promise was to be kept with an unworthy Traytor: at which word Montford riseth up, protesting that he lyed; and were he not Protected by his Royall Dignity, he would make him repent those words. The King com∣mands his Servants to lay hold on bim, but the Lords would not permit it. Yet after this great affront to the King, is Montford sent over againe into Gascogne, though with a more limited Authority, and shortly after the King with a Fleete of three hundred Ships goes thither himselfe, and soone composeth all differences in the Country.

But now the King of Spaine pretends a title to Aquitaine, and to take him off, King Henry sends to treate of a marriage betweene Prince Edward and his Sister Eleanor, which being accepted by the King of Spaine, the Marriage is solemnized at Burgos, where the King of Spaine knights the Prince, and quits his claime to Aquitaine for him and his Successours for ever: and King Henry invests the Prince and his Wife in it, and gives unto him besides, Ireland, Wales, Bristow, Stamford, and Grantham; and from hence it came that ever after this, the Kings eldest Sonne was immediately upon his Birth Prince of Wales, and Earle of Chester. After this King Henry prepares to returne home, and well he might, having spent in this and his former Journeyes into those parts, the summe of seven and twenty hundred thousand pounds: More then all the Lands if they had beene sold were worth; which when the King was told, he desired there might be no words made of it for his credite. And now being to returne, he is desirous with the King of Frances leave, to passe thorow France; and comming to Paris with a thousand Horse, where he stayed eight dayes, is there most Royally Feasted by the King of France; and he as royally Feasts the King of France againe. But it is the Londoners and the Iewes that are like to pay for all. For comming home about Christmas, when the Lon∣doners presented him with a hundred pounds in money, and afterwards with two hundred pounds in Plate: it was so sleighted, and so ill taken, that a hole was pre∣sently found in their coate, for an escape of a Prisoner, which cost them three thou∣sand Markes: Yet was not this enough, but he takes good Fleeces from the Iews, and then lets them out to Farme to his Brother Richard, for a great summe of mo∣ney, and he to make what more of them he could.

Yet after all this he complaines of his Debts, which he saith are at least three hundred thousand Markes, which must needes be the heavyer to him, because he had diminished his own meanes, by the allowance of fifteene thousand Markes per annum to his Sonne the Prince. The onely hope is in the Parliament, but a Parliament being called, they fall presently upon their old Grievances, complai∣ning upon the King for breach of Charters, and renuing their Claime, to have the Chiefe Justiciar, the Chancellour and Treasurer, to be chosen by themselves: so nothing was done for the King at this time, and the Parliament being prorogued till Michaelmas after, as little then, by reason many of the Peeres came not, as not being summoned according to the tenour of Magna Charta. And now while the King was using meanes to winde himselfe out of Debt, there happened occasi∣ons to put him further in; For now Thomas Earle of Savoy, the Queenes Brother, being at warre with the City of Thuryn, must be supplyed with money towards it by the King of England: Now the Elect Bishop of Toledo the King of Spaines Bro∣ther, comes into England, and must be sumptuously Feasted, and have great gifts presented him: Now Eleanor the Princes Wife, arrives with a multitude of Spa∣niards, and must all be entertained at the Kings charge, and have no small presents given them at their departure: Now comes Rustandus from the Pope, with power to Collect the Tenth of the Clergy, for the Popes use and the Kings, and to ab∣solve Page  116 him from his Oath of the Holy warre, so he would come to destroy Manfred Sonne to the Emperour Fredericke, now in possession of the kingdome of Sicilie, and Apulia. And this man likewise hath great gifts bestowed upon him, besides a rich Prebend in Yorke. But the Pope by too much seeking his profit, loseth credit and all, for the Clergy sleights him, and will give him nothing: and when he would have borrowed of the Earle of Cornwall five hundred Markes, the Earle an∣swered, he liked not to lend his money to one, upon whom he could not Distraine. But King Henries greatest charge, was his purchasing a kingdome for his Sonne Edmund; for now comes the Bishop of Bnonia from the Pope, with a Ring of Investiture to Prince Edmund, in the kingdome of Sicilie, which he pretends to be at his disposing; and King Henry takes it in so good earnest, that after this he cals his Sonne Edmund by no other name then King of Sicilie. But all this was done by the Pope, but to angle away King Henries money, as indeed upon this hope, he had drawne the King into the engagement of a hundred and fifty thou∣sand Markes; for to draw the King on, it was given out that the Pope had dele∣ted all Manfreds Forces, and was thereby in possession of the kingdome, when the truth was, that Manfred had defeated the Popes Forces, and was thereby him∣selfe established in the kingdome.

The yeare 1275. the King keepes his Christmas at Winchester, where new Grie∣vances arise. The Merchants of Gascogny, having their Wines taken from them by the Kings Officers without satisfaction; complaine to their Lord the Prince, he to his Father, and his Father having beene informed before-hand by his Offi∣cers, that their clamour was unjust, as relying upon the Princes favour; he falls into a great rage with the Prince, and breakes out into these words: See! now my Blood and my owne Bowels impugne me: but afterwards pacified, he gives or∣der the injuries should be redressed. And now the Princes Followers themselves come to be a Grievance, who relying upon their Master commit many outrages, and spoyle and wrong men at their pleasure, and the Prince himselfe is not alto∣gether free, of whom it is said, that meeting a young man travailing by the way, he caused one of his eares to be cut off, and one of his eyes to be put out: and ma∣ny such prankes plaid by him and his Followers in Wales, made the Welsh breake out into open Rebellion, which the Prince would faine have suppressed, but there was no money to be had towards the doing it. And now the King fals to shifts, he comes into the Chequer himselfe, and there layes penalties upon Sheriffes, that returne not their moneys in due time; then he fals upon measures of Wine and Ale, upon Bushels and Weights, and something he gets; but London is his best Cheqer, and every yeare commonly he hath one quarrell or other to the Londoners, and they are sure to pay. And now fals out an accident, seeming of great honour, but cer∣tainely of no profit to the kingdome. Richard Earle of Cornwall the Kings Brother is Elected King of the Romans, for although Alphonsus King of Spaine the great Mathematician were his Competitour, yet Earle Richards money wrought more then his Learning, and the Arch-bishop of Cllen comes over to fetch him, and Crowned he is at Aquisgrane. This Earle of Cornwall is reported able to dispend a hundred Markes a day, or ten yeares, besides his Revenues in England. But now, as a man that payes deare for an Office, lookes that his Office should pay him a∣gaine: So Earle Richard having given infinitely to compasse this Advancement, looked to helpe himselfe againe by the Place; and this, and the desire he had to revenge himselfe upon those tha had opposed his Election made him take such vi∣olent courses that he came soone to be dispossessed, forsaken, and forced to returne into England a poorer King, then he went out an Earle.

Acts done in the cntention betweene the King and his Barons.

NOw King Henry very proud to have his younger sonne a King as well as his brother, cals a Parliament, wherein he brings forth his sonne Edmund, clad in Sicilian habit, and els the Parliment, that for advancing this sonne of his to the Page  117 kingdome of Sicilie, he had bound himselfe under covenant of losing his king∣dome in the summe of an hundred and forty thousand Markes, and hoped they would not thinke much to aide him with money for so great an advancement: but the Parliament stood firme to their usuall condition of Margna Charta; so as that might be confirmed, they were content to give two and fifty thousand Marks, but this gave the King no satisfaction. The yeare after, another Parliament is hol∣den at London, wherein upon the Kings pressing them againe for meanes to pay his debts to the Pope; the Lords tell him plainely, they will not yeeld to give him any thing for any such purpose; and give their reasons, and withall repeate their owne grievances, his breach of promise, the insolencie of his brothers, and spe∣cially William de Valence, who had given the lie to the Earle of Leycester, and no right done him in it; and many such things, which the King hearing, and not able to deny, humbles himselfe, and tels them how he had often by ill counsell beene seduced; but promiseth by his Oath which he tooke on the Tombe of Saint Ed∣ward, to reforme all those errours. But the Lords not well knowing how to deale in this businesse, as being divided betweene a desire to satisfie the King, and a desire to be satisfied themselves; and knowing withall the variablenesse of the Kings na∣ture, they get the Parliament to be adjourned to Saint Barnabies day, and then to assemble at Oxford. In which meane time, the Earles Glocester, Leycester, Hereford, the Earle Marshall Bigod, Spenser, and other great men confederate, and provide by Armes to effect their desire: and here is the foundation laid of those bloudy wars that ensued betweene King Henry and his Barons. And now the King being put to his shifts for money, gets the Abbot of Westminster to put his Seale and that of his Covent to a Deed Obligatory, as a surety for two hundred Markes; making ac∣count, that by his example, others would be drawne to doe the like: but his trusty servant Simon Passeleve being imployed to other Monasteries, and telling them a∣mongst other reasons to perswade them, that the King was Lord of all they had, they onely answered; they acknowledged indeed the King to be Lord of all they had, but yet so, as to defend, not to destroy the same: and this was all he could get of them. The Prince also in no lesse want then his Father, is driven to mor∣gage his Towne of Stamford, Brahan, and many other things, to William de Va∣lence, a Poictouin, wherby appeared the disorder of the time, when the Prince was in want, and strangers had such plenty. And now is the Parliament assembled at Ox∣ford, whither the Lords come attended with large traines: and here they beginne with the expostulation of the former Liberties, requiring that the Chiefe Justiciar, the Chancellour and Treasurer may be ordained by publike choyce; and that the twenty foure Conservaours of the kingdome may be confirmed, twelve by the election of the Lords, and twelve by the King, with whatsoever else made for their imagined security. The King seeing their strength, and in what manner they required these things; sweares solemnly againe to the confirmation of them, and causeth the Prince to take the same Oath. But the Lords left not here, the Kings brethren, the Poictouins, and other strangers must presently be removed; and this also, though with some little opposition, was at last concluded: and thereupon the Kings brethren and their followers are despoyled of all their fortunes, and x∣iled by proscription under the Kings owne hand, directed to the Earles of Hereford and Surrey. But now sicknesse and mortality happening to many great ones, it is imputed to poysons, supposed to have beene prepared by those strangers proscri∣bed; the Earle of Glocester in a sicknesse, suddenly lost his haire, his teeth, his nailes; and his brother hardly escaped death: which made many to suspect their nearest servants, and their Cookes: Walter Scoynie the Earle Steward, is strictly examined, committed to prison, and afterward without confession, is upon pre∣sumptions onely executed at Winchester: Elias a converted Iew, is said to have confessed, that in his house the poyson was confected; but it was when he was a Iew, and not a Christian. Every man that had received any wrong by those stran∣gers, now put up their complaints, and are heard. Guydo de ••chfort a Poictouin, to whom the King had given the Castle of Rochester, is banished, and all his goods Page  118 confiscate. William Bussey, Steward to William de Valence, is committed to the Tower of London, and most reproachfully used. Richard Gray, whom the Lords had made Captaine of Dover Castle, is set to intercept whatsoever the Poictouins convaied that way out of England; and much treasure of theirs, and of the elect of Winche∣ster is by him taken, besides great summes committed to the new Temple are found out, and seised for the King.

And now the new Chiefe Justiciar Hugh Bigod, brother to the Earle Marshall, (chosen this last Parliament by publike voyce) procures that foure knights in every Shire should inquire of the oppressions of the poore, done by great men; and cer∣tifie the same, that redresse might be made. Also order was taken against corrupt∣ing of justice; when yet notwithstanding this pretended care of the publike, it is noted by the Writers and Records of that time, how the Lords were themselves but as otidem tyranni, enforcing the services of the Kings tenants that dwelt neare them. But to make their cause the more popular, it was rumored that the King stood upon it, that his necessity must be supplied out of the estates of his people, whether they would or no: which the King hearing, sends forth Proclamation, de∣claring how certaine malitious persons had falsely and seditiously reported, that he meant unlawfully to charge his subjects, and subvert the Lawes and Liberties of the kingdome; and by these false suggestions, averted the hearts of his people from him: and therefore desires them not to give credit to such perurbers: for that he was ready to defend all Rights and Customes due unto them: and that they might rest of this secured, he caused his Letters to be made Patents. But now Montford Glocester, and Spenser, inforce the King to call a Parliament at London, where they get the authority of the twenty foure to be estated wholly upon themselves, and they alone to dispose of the custody of the Castles, and other businesses of the kingdom: and here they bind the King to lose to them their Legall obedience when∣soever he infringed his Charter. At this time intelligence was given to the Lords, that Richard King of the Romns had a purpose to come into England; and the Lords suspecting he would come with power to aide the King his brother, take or∣der for guarding the Ports, with intent to hinder his landing: but finding his traine to be but small, accompanied onely with his Queene, two German Earles, and eight knights: upon his promise to take their propounded Oath, they admit him to land; but would nether permit the King (who came thither to meee him) nor himselfe to enter into Dover Castle. At Canterbury they bring him into the Chapter house, where the Earle of Glocester standing forth in the midst, cals out the Earle, not by the name of King, but Richard Earle of Cornwall; who in reverent manner com∣ming forth, taketh his Oath in these words. Heare all men, that I Richard Earle of Cornwall, doe here sweare upon the holy Evangelists, that I shall be faithfull and diligent to reforme with you the Kingdome of England, and e an effectuall Coadju∣tor to expell all Rebels and disturbers of the same; and this Oath will inviolably ob∣serve, under paine of losing all the Land I have in England: so helpe me God. But though this Earle came home but weake and poore, yet upon his returne the King takes heart, and seeks all meanes to vindicate his power: and first sends messen∣gers secretly to Rome, to be Absolved from his enforced Oath; and to have the more assurance from the King of France, he makes an absolute resignation of all his Right to the Dutchy of Normandy, and the Earledomes of Anjou, Poictou, Tourene, and Maine: in regard whereof, the King of France gives him three hun∣dred thousand pounds (some say Crownes) oAnjouin money; and grans him to enjoy all Guyen, beyond the River Garone, all the Countrey of Xanoigne to the River of Charente, the Countrey of Limousin and Quercy, for him and his succes∣sors, doing their homage to the Crowne of France, as Duke of Aquitie. And now was the King of France made Arbiter of the difference betweene King Henry and his Barons, who gives sentence against the Barons concerning the Provisions at Ox∣ford; but of their side concerning King Iohns Charter: by which nice distintion, though he did but leave the matter as he found it: (for those Provisions, as the Lords pretended, were grounded upon that Charter) yet did his sentence draw Page  119 many away from the party of the Barons, amongst whom was Henry sonne to the Earle of Cornwall, Roger Clifford, Roger de Leisbourne, Haimo Lestrange, and many others. But the Earle of Leycester, notwithstanding this revolt, recovers the Town and Castle of Glocester; constraines the Citizens to pay a thousand pounds for their redemption; goes with an Army to Worcester, possesseth him of the Castle, thence to Shrewsbery, and so comes about to the Ile of Ely, subdues the same, and growes exceeding powerfull. The King doubting his approach to London, fals to treat of a Peace, and a Peace is concluded upon these conditions; that all the Castles of the King should be delivered to the keeping of the Barons; the Provisions of Ox∣ford should inviolably be kept; all strangers by a certaine time should avoid the kingdome, except onely such as were licensed to stay. The Prince had fortified Windsor Castle; but Leycester comming to besiege it, he treats with him for Peace, which is refused, and the Castle is rendred to him.

The King at this time, to win time, convokes another Parliament at London, wher∣in he won many Lords to take his part; as namely the Prince Richard his brother, Henry his son, William Valence, with the rest of his brothers lately returned, and with them the King marcheth to Oxford, whither divers Lords of Scotland repaire to him; as Iohn Commin, Iohn Baylioll, Lords of Galloway, Robert Bruce, and others: also many Barons of the North; Glifford, Percey, Basset, and others. From Oxford he goes to Northampton, where he tooke prisoners, Simon Montford the younger, with foureteene other principall men; thence to Nottingham, making spoyles of such possessions as pertained to the Barons in those parts. And now the Kings side growes strong, which the Earles of Leycester and Glocester seeing, they write to the King, protesting their loyalty, and how they opposed onely such as were enemies to him and the kingdome, and had belied them. The King returnes answer, that themselves were the perturbers of him and his State, and sought his and the kingdomes destruction; and therefore defies them. The Prince likewise and the Earle of Cornwall send letters of defiance to them. Yet the Barons continue to mediate a Peace, and send the Bishops of London and Worcester, with offer of thir∣ty thousand Markes to the King, for the dammages done in these warres, so as the Statutes of Oxford may be observed; but this offer is not accepted. The Earle seeing no remedy, but it must be put to a day; takes his time to be earlier ready then was expected, and supplies his want of strength with policie, placing on the one side of a hill neare Lewis, where the battell was fought, certaine Ensignes with∣out men, in such sort, as they might seeme a farre off, to be Squadrons of succours to second those he brought to the encounter, whom he caused all to weare white Crosses, both for their owne notice, and the signification of his cause, which he would have to be thought for justice. Here the fortune of the day was his, the King, the Prince, the Earle of Cornwall, and his sonne Henry, the Earles of Arun∣dell and Hereford, with all the Scottish Lords, are taken prisoners; the Eale War∣ren, William de Valence, Guy de Lusignan, the Kings brothers, with Hugh Bigod Earle Marshall, save themselves by flight: five thousand (some say twenty thou∣sand) others are slaine in the battell. A yeare and a halfe is Simon Montford in pos∣session of his prisoners, carrying the King about with him to countenance his acti∣ons, till he had gotten all the strongest Castles in the kingdome.

And now comes Erinnys and sets debabte betweene the two great Earles of Leycester and Glocester, about their Dividend: Leycester is taxed to doe more for his owne particular then the common good; his sonnes also presuming upon his great∣nesse, grew insolent: whereupon Glocester discontented, forsakes that side, and be∣takes him to the Prince; who lately escaping out of the Castle of Hereford, had gotten a power about him to try the fortune of another battell. The revolt of this Earle being great in it selfe, was greater by its example; for now many others revolted likewise: and the Earle of Leycester seeing the improvement of the Prin∣ces forces, who was now with his Army about Worcester, though he aw his owne disadvantage, yet imbattels in a Plaine neare Evsham to encounter him, and noting the manner of the approach of the Princes Army, said o those about him; These Page  120 men come bravely on, they learne it not of themselves, but of me; and seeing himselfe likely to be beet, and overlaid with multitude, he advised his friends, Hugh Spenser, Ralph Basset, and others, to shift for themselves; which when they refused to doe, then (saith he) let us commend our soules to God, for our bodies are theirs: and so undertaking the maine weight of the battell, perished under it and with him are slaine, his sonne Henry, eleven Barons, with many thousands of common Souldiers. And thus ended Montford the great Earle of Leycester, highly honoured in his life, and more highly should have beene after his death, if the peo∣ple might have had their will, who talkt of Miracles enough to have made him a Saint.

And now is King Henry by this victory of his sonne, at liberty; who together repaire to Winchester, where a Parliament is convoked, and all who adhered to the Earle Montford are disinherited, and their estates conferred on others, at the Kings pleasure; the Londoners also have their Liberties taken from them. But though the death of Montford gave a great wound to the party of the Barons, yet it was not mortall, at least not mortal presently, for there remained reliques that kept it alive a good while after. Simon and Guy de Montford, sons of the Earle of Leycester, and other of the Barons, take and defend the Ile of Ely: the Castle of Killingworth held out halfe a yeare, till their victuals failed; and then yeelded upon conditions to have their lives and goods saved: and many others there were, resolute and desperate persons, strongly knit and fastned together, though now shortly upon dissolving. For after the Parliament at Westminster, the King with an Army going against them, and being at Northampton, Simon and Guy de Montford submit themselves to him: but when the Earle of Glocester opposed the restoring them to their estates, they were faine to flie the kingdome, and make their fortunes in other Countries, as indeed they did; the younger in Italy, the elder in France, where they were Propa∣tours of two great Families. Their mother was banisht shortly after the battell of Evesham, a Lady of eminent note, as being the daughter and sister of a King; and yet of more note for her patient bearing of adversity, or rather for her making a benefit of adversity; for by this meanes she betooke her selfe to the veile of piety, and died a Nunne at Montarges in France.

Three yeares after this, the disinherited Barons held out, till at length, condi∣tions of render are propounded; but here the Councell are divided in opinion: Mortimer and others stated in the possessions of the disinherited, are against re∣storation; alleadging, it were injustice to take from them the rewards of their ser∣vice. Glocester, and the twelve ordained to deale for the peace of the State, are ear∣nest for restoration; alleadging, it were hard measure to grant them their lives, & not their livelihoods: but not prevailing, in great discontentment Glocester retires from Court, sends messengers to warne the King to remove strangers from his counsell; and observe the Provisions at Oxford, as he promised at Evesham: otherwise that he should not marvell if himselfe did what he thought fit. Hereupon Iohn de War∣ren, Earle of Surrey, and William de Valentia are sent to the Earle of Glocester: who though they could not perswade him to submit to the King; yet thus much they got of him under his hand and seale, that he would never beare Armes against the King or his sonne Edward, but onely defend himselfe, and pursue Roger Mortimer and his other enemies. And now a Parliament is convoked at Bury, wherein many demands are made by the King and the Legat, and all for money from the Clergy; but all denied, that nothing but denials are done in this Parliament. After this, the Legat imployes Solicitours to perswade the disinherited Lords which held the Ile of Ely, to returne to the faith and unity of the Church, and to the peace of the King, according to the forme propounded at Coventry: to which the Lords make answer, that they never opposed the unity of the Church but the varice of Church-men that were put in authority; and that they never opposed the King, but for the good of the kingdome: and then required that the Provisions of Ox∣ford might be observed, and pledges be given them for their security. Hereupon the yeare after, the King prepares a mighty Army, and Prince Edward with bridges Page  121 entring the Ile of Ely, shuts them up so, that he constraines them at last to yeeld; also the Earle of Glocester comming to London with an Army, is by the Legat once againe perswaded to render himselfe to the King, and upon forfeiture of twelve thousand Markes if ever he should raise any commotion againe, is reconciled. Now remaines Lewilin and the Welsh, to be chastened for aiding of Simon Montford; but the King going against them with an Army, they give him two and thirty thou∣sand pounds Sterling, and so make their peace. And here was an end of the first warres betweene the Kings of England and their Barons. The next yeare after the Popes Legat Ottobon signes with the Croysado both the Kings sonnes, Edward and Edmund, the Earle of Glocester, and divers Noble men induced to undertake the Holy warre, by the sollicitation of him and the King of France: who nothwith∣standing his former calamities endured in that action, would once again adventure it: and because Prince Edward wanted meanes to furnish himselfe out, the King of France lends him thirty thousand Markes upon a morgage of Gascoyne. And now whilst this preparation is in hand, King Henry labours to establish the peace of the kingdome, and to reforme the excesses which the warre had bred; and the same yeare assembles his last Parliament at Marleborough, where the Statutes of that title were enacted. Neare two yeeres it seemes to have beene after the under∣taking the Crosse before Prince Edward set forth; but then taking his wife Eleanor with him, though young with childe, he set forward; and in the voyage, when many of his people seemed desirous to leave him and returne home, he is said to have strucken his breast, and sworne; that if all his followers forsooke him, he would yet enter Acon, or Ptolemais; though but onely with his horse-keeper Fowin. Shortly after Richard King of the Romans died, and the yeare following King Henry.

Of his Taxations, and wayes for raising of money.

NEver sonne was more like a Father in any thing, then King Henry was like his Father King Iohn, in this point, for raising of money; for he trode directly in all his steps, if he added not something of his owne. King Iohn had great Sub∣sidies granted him by Parliament, for any great action he undertooke, so had King Henry. King Iohn resumed the lands aliened from the Crowne, so did King Henry. King Iohn made benefit of the vacancie of Bishopricks and Abbeys, so did King Henry. K. Iohn took great Fines of many for crimes not proved, but onely supposed, so did King Henry. King Iohn made benefit of a new Seale, so did King Henry. King Iohn extorted great summes from the Iewes, so did King Henry. And one way more he had to get money, which perhaps his Father had not, and that was by begging, as he told the Abbot of Borough; It was more Almes to give money to him, then to the Begger that went from doore to doore. Indeed Taxations in this Kings Raigne may be reckoned amongst his Annuall Revenues, for scarce any yeare passed without a Parliament, and seldome any Parliament without a Taxe; or if any sometimes without, it was then cause of the greater Taxation some o∣ther way; as when he tooke of the Londoners for having aided the Barons, twenty thousand Markes.

Of his Lawes and Ordinances.

IN this Kings Raigne were ratified and confirmed the two great Charters of Mag∣na Chara, and Charta de Foresta: also in his time were enacted the Statutes cal∣led of Merton, of Oxford, and of Marleborough. Also stealing of cattell, which before was but Pecuniary, he made capitall: and the first that suffered for the same, was one of Dunstable; who having stollen twelve Oxen from the Inhabitants of Colne, and being pursued to Redburne, was by a Bailiffe of Saint Albons, according to the Kings Proclamation, condemned and beheaded. And it may seeme strange that in these times so much bloud should be shed in the field, and none upon the Page  122 scaffold; for till the twenty sixth yeare of this King, that one William Marisc, the sonne of Geoffrey Marisc, a Noble man of Ireland, being condemned for Piracie and Treason, was hanged, beheaded, and quartered; there is no example of that kinde of punishment to be found in our Histories. Particularly in this Kings Raigne was made that Statute, by which the Ward and marriage of the heires of Barons within age, is given to the King. Also in this Kings Raigne the Pleas of the Crowne were pleaded in the Tower of London. All Weares in the Thames are in this Kings time ordained to be pluck'd up and destroyed. Also the Citizens of London are allowed by Charter, to passe Toll-free through all England, and to have free Warren about London, also to have and use a common Seale. Also it was ordained that no Sheriffe of London should continue in his office longer then one yeare, which they did before for many. In the five and twentieth yeare of this King were Aldermen first chosen within the City of London, which then had the rule of the City, and of the Wards of the same, and were then yearely changed, as now the Sheriffes are. It was in this Kings time allowed to the City of London, to present their Major to the Barons of the Exchequer to be sworne, which before was to be presented to the King, wheresoever he were. In his time the clause No obstante (brought in first by the Pope) was taken up by the King in his grants and writings. Also in this Kings time, William Bishop of Salisbury, first caused that cu∣stome to be received for a Law, whereby the Tenants of every Lordship are bound to owe their suite to the Lords Court, of whom they hold their Tenements.

Affaires of the Church in his time.

AFfaires of the Church for matter of Doctrine, were never more quiet then in this Kings Raigne; for now all Heresies accounted of the time, especially the Albigenses were in a manner suppressed by the Armes of the King of France, not without the Vote of the King of England, who forbore to make warre upon him in tendernesse to this service; but for matter of manners, they were never more turbulent: for now Abbeys were fleeced, Sanctuaries violated, Clergy-men outra∣ged, Bishops themselves not spared; and all for greedinesse of money, or for re∣venge. Ottobone the Popes Legat here in England, lying at the Abbey of Oseney, there happened a difference betweene his servants and the Schollers of Oxford; in which contention, a brother of his was slaine, and the Legat himselfe faine to fly into the Steeple for safegard of his life: whereupon afterward being gotten from thence by the Kings safe conduct, he thundred out curses against the Schollers, and interdicted the University, so as the Colledges grew desolate, and the Students were dispersed abroad into other places, for the space of halfe a yeare: till the Monkes of Oseney, and the Regent Masters of Oxford were faine to goe bare-foote and bare-head through London, as farre as Durham house, where the Legat lay; and there upon their humble submission, and great mens intercession, they were absol∣ved, and the University restored to its former estate. But of this Ottobone, it may not be impertinent to relate a little further; that going afterward out of England, he came by degrees, after the death of Innocent the fifth, to be Pope of Rome him∣selfe, by the name of Adrian the fifth, and died within fifty dayes after his electi∣on. Amongst affaires of the Church, may be reckoned the Ulcers of any mem∣ber of the Church: such a one as in this Kings time brake out most loathsome; for one procuring five wounds to be made in his body, in resemblance to the five wounds in Christs body, tooke upon him to be Christ, and had gotten a Woman, that tooke upon her to be the Virgin Mary; who continuing obstinate in their mad∣nesse, were adjudged to be immured and shut up betweene two wals, to the end (no doubt) the contagion of their filthinesse should spread no further. In this Kings time, a little novelty was first brought in by Pope Innocent the fourth, who ordai∣ned that Cardinals should weare red Hats: something perhaps for mystery, and something for distictnion.

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Workes of piety done by him, or by others in his time.

THis King caused a chest of Gold to be made for laying up the Reliques of King Edward the Confessour, in the Church of Westminster. Hee builded a Church for converted Iewes in London: also an Hospitall at Oxford, for passengers and diseased persons: also the new Coventuall Church and the Chappell of our Lady at Westminster, whereof hee laid himselfe the first stone: also the houe of Black-Friers in Canterbury. In his time, Ela Countesse of Salisbury, founded the Abbey of Lacok in Wiltshire; Richard Earle of Cornwall, founded Hayles a Monaste∣ry of Cistersian Monkes neare to Winchcombe in Glocestershire: Reginold de Moun, Earle of Somerset, and Lord of Dunster, founded the Abbey of Newham in Devon∣shire: Ranulph the third Earle of Chester, and Lord of little Britaine, builded the Castles of Chartley, Bestone, and the Abbey of Dela Cresse: Sir Iohn Mansell the Kings Chaplaine, founded a house of Regular Chanons neare to Rumney in Kent: William de Albineto Earle of Arundell, founded the Priory of Wimondham: William Brunc, a Citizen of London, and Rosia his wife, founded the Hospitall of our Lady without Bishopsgate in London: And Isabel Countesse of Arundell, founded the Nun∣nery of Marran neare to Linne. Friers Minors first arrived at Dover, nine in num∣ber, whereof five remained at Canterbury, and there builded the first Covent of Friers Minors that ever was in England: the other foure came to London, who en∣creasing in number, had a place assigned them in Saint Nicholas Shambles; which Iohn Iwyn, Mercer of London, appropriated to the use of the said Friers, and became himselfe a Lay brother. Also in this Kings time the new worke of Saint Pauls Church in London was begunne. If it were piety in the Iew, who falling into a Privie upon a Saterday, would not be taken out that day, because it was the Iewes Sabbath: It was as much piety in the Earle of Glocester, that would not suffer him to be taken out the next day, because it was the Christian Sabbath; and when the third day he was taken out dead, whose piety was the greater? A strange acci∣dent upon an act of piety, is related in this Kings time; which if true, is a Miracle, if not true, is yet a Legend, and not unworthy to be read: that in a time of dearth, one man in a certaine Parish, who allowed poore people to relieve themselves with taking Corne upon his ground, had at Harvest a plentifull crop; where others that denied them, had their Corne all blasted, and nothing worth. In this Kings time also, Hugh Balsamus, Bishop of Ely, founded Saint Peters Colledge in Cam∣bridge. Hubert de Burgh Earle of Kent, was buried in the Church of the Friers Preachers in London, to which Church he gave his Palace at Westminster, which af∣terward the Arch-bishop of Yorke bought, and made it his Inne; since commonly called Yorke place, now White-Hall.

Casualties happening in his time.

AT one time there fell no Raine in England, from the first of March to the Assum∣ption of our Lady; and at another time there fell so much Raine, that Holland and Holdernes in Lincolneshire were over-flowed and drowned. In the seventeenth yeare of his Raign, were seene five Suns at one time together; after which followed so great a Dearth, that people were constrained to eate horse flesh, and barkes of Trees: and in London twenty thousand were starved for want of foode. Also in his time the Church of Saint Mildred in Canterbury, and a great part of the City was burnt. Also the Towne of New-Castle upon Tine was burnt, Bridge and all. And though it may seeme no fit place to tell it, yet here or no where it must be told; that in this Kings time there was sent by the King of France, the first Elephant that ever was seene in England.

Page  124

Of his Wife and Children.

HE marryed Eleanor, the second of the five Daughters of Raymond Earle of Provence, who lived his Wife thirty seven yeares, his Widow nineteene, dy∣ed a Nun at Aimesbury, and was buryed in her Monastery. By her, he had sixe Sonnes, and three Daughters: of his Sonnes, the foure youngest dyed young, and were buryed, three of them at Westminster, and the fourth in the New Temple by Fleetstreet. His eldest Sonne Edward, surnamed Longshanke, of his tall and slender body, succeeded him in the kingdome. His second Sonne Edmund, surnamed Crouch-backe, of bowing in his backe, (as some say) but more likely of wearing the signe of the Crosse, (anciently called a Crouch) upon his backe, which was usually worne of such as had vowed voyages to Hierusalem, as he had done. He was invested Titular King of Sicilie and Apulia, and created Earle of Lancaster; on whose person originally the great contention of Lancaster and Yorke was Founded. He had two Wives, the first was Avelin. Daughter and Heire of William Earle of Albemarle, by whom he left no issue. The second was Queene Blanch, Daughter of Robert Earle of Artois, (Brother of Saint Lewis King of France) Widow of Henry of Champaigne King of Navarre: by her he had issue three Sonnes, and one Daughter. His eldest Sonne Thomas, who after his Father was Earle of Lanca∣ster, and having marryed Alice, Daughter and Heire of Henry Lacie Earle of Lin∣colne, was beheaded at Pomfret without issue. His second sonne Henry Lord of Monmouth, who after his Brothers death was Earle of Lancaster, and Father of Henry the first Duke of Lancaster: his third Sonne Iohn; who dyed unmarryed. His Daughter Mary marryed to Henry Lord Percy, Mother of Henry the first Earle of Northumberland. This Edmund dyed at Bay in Gascoyne, in the yeare 1296. when he had lived fifty yeares, whose body halfe a yeare after his death was brought over into England and entombed at Westminster. Of King Henries three Daugh∣ter, the eldest Margaret was marryed to Alexander the third, King of Scotland, by whom she had issue, two Sonnes, Alexander and David; who dyed both before their Father, without issue, and one Daughter Margart Queene of Norway, Wife of King Erike, and Mother of Margaret the Heire of Scotland and Norway, that dyed un∣marryed. The second Daughter of King Henry was Beatrice, borne at Burdeaux, marryed to Iohn the first Duke of Britaine, and had issue by him, Arthur Duke of Britaine, Iohn Earle of Richmont, Peter; and Blanch marryed to Philip Sonne of Robert Earle of Artois, Eleanor a Nunne at Aimesbury, and Mary marryed to Guy Earle of S. Paul she deceased in Britaine, and was buryed at London, in the Quire of the Gray Fryers within Newgate. The third Daughter of King Henry, named Katherine, dyed young, and lies buryed at Westminster, in the space betweene the Chappels of King Edward and Saint Benet.

Of his Personage and Conditions.

HE was of stature but meane, yet of a well compacted body, and very strong: one of his eyelids hanging downe, and almost covering the blacke of his Eye: For his inward endowments, it may be said, he was wiser for a man, then for a Prince; for he knew better how to governe his life then his Subjects. He was rather Pious then Devout, as taking more pleasure in hearing Masses then Sermons, as he said to the King of France, He had rather see his Friend once, then heare from him often. His minde seemed not to stand firme upon its Basis, for e∣very sudden accident put him into passion. He was neither constant in his love, nor in his hate; for he never had so great a Favorite whom he cast not into dis∣grace, nor so great an Enemy whom he received not into favour. An example of both which qualities was seene in his carriage towards Hubert de Burgh, who was for a time his greatest Favourite, yet cast out afterward in miserable disgrace, and then no man held in greater hared, yet received afterward into grace againe. And Page  125 it is memorable to heare with what crimes this Hubert was charged at his Arraign∣ment; and pecially one: That to disswade a great Lady from marriage with the King, he had said, the King was a squint-eyed Foole, and a kinde of Leper, de∣ceitfull, perjued, more faint-hearted then a Woman, and utterly unfit for any Noble Ladies company. For which, and other crimes laid to his charge in the Kings Bench, where the King himselfe was present; he was adjudged to have his Lands confiscate, and to be deprived of his title of Earle; yet after all this, was restored to his estate againe, and suffered to live in quiet. He was more desirous of money then of honour, for else he would never have sold his Right to the two great Dukedomes of Normandy and Anjou to the King of France for a Summe of money. Yet he was more desirous of honour then of quietnesse, for else he would never have contended so long with his Barons about their Charter of Liberty, which was upon the matter, but a point of Honour. His most eminent vertue, and that which made him the more eminent, as being rare in Princes, was his Conti∣nency; for there is nothing read, either of any bae children he had, or of any Concubine he kept.

Of his Death and Buriall.

THough he had lived a troublesome life, yet he dyed a quiet death; for he had etled Peace in his kingdome, and in his Conscience. For being at Saint Ed∣mundsbury, and finding himselfe not well at ease, he made the more hast to Lon∣don; where calling before him his Lords, and specially Gilbert de Clare, Earle of Glocester; he exhorted them to be true and faithfull to his Sonne Prince Edward, who was at that time farre from home, and therefore had the more need of their care, which consisted chiefly in their agreement one with another. And then, his sicknesse encreasing, he yeelded up his Soule to God, on the sixteenth day of No∣vember, in the yeare 1272. when he had lived threescore and five yeares, Raigned five and fifty, and was buryed at Westminster, which he had newly Builded.

Of Men of note in his time.

OF Martial men famous in his time there were many, but three specially who ob∣scured the rest: The first was William Marshall Earle of Pembroke, memorable for the great care he had of King Henry in his minority, and more memorable for the lit∣tle care, that Destiny had of his Posterity; for leaving five Sonnes behind him, they all lived to be Earles successively, yet all dyed without issue: So as the great name and numerous Family of the Marshals came wholly to be extinct in that Genera∣tion. The second was Richard de Clare Earle of Glocester, who in a Battaile against Baldwyn de Gisnes, a valiant Fleming, imployed by King Henry, himselfe alone en∣countred twelve of his Enemies, and having his Horse slaine under him, he pitcht one of them by the legge out of the saddle, and leapt into it himselfe, and conti∣nued the fight without giving ground, till his Army came to rescue him. An Act that may seeme fitter to be placed amongst the Fictions of knights Errant, then in a true Narration. The third was Simon Montford, a man of so audacious a spirit, that he gave King Henry the lye to his face, and that in presence of all his Lords; and of whom it seemes, the King stood in no small feare: for passing one time up∣on the Thames, and suddenly taken with a terrible storme of Thunder and Light∣ning, he commanded to be set ashore at the next Staires, which happened to be at Durham House, where Montford then lay, who comming downe to meet the King, and perceiving him somewhat frighted with the Thunder, said unto him, Your Majsty need not feare the Thunder, the danger is now past: No Montford (said the King) I feare not the Thunder so much as I doe thee. Of men famous for Sanctity of life, there were likewise many in his time, but three more eminent then the rest, Edmund Arch-bishop of Canterbury, Richard Bishop of Chichester, and Thomas Arch-deacon of Hereford; All three either Canonized, or at least Page  126 thought worthy to be Canonized for Saints. To these may be added Robert Gross∣head Bishop of Lincolne, who Translated the Testaments of the twelve Patriarchs, out of Greeke into Latine; which through envy of the Jewes never came to the knowledge of Saint Hierome, wherein are many Prophesies of our Saviour Christ. Of men famous for learning there were likewise many in his time; of whom, some left workes behinde them for testimonies of their knowledge in divers kindes, as Alexander Hales a Fryer Minor, who wrote many Treatises in Divinity; Ralp Coggeshall, who wrote the Appendix to the Chronicle of Ralph Niger; Randulph Earle of Chester, the third and last of that name, who compiled a Booke of the Lawes of England; Henry Bracton, who wrote the Booke commonly called by his name, De Consuetudinibus Anglicanis: and besides these, Hugh Kirkestead, Ri∣chard of Ely, Peter Henham, Iohn Gyles, and Nicholas Fernham, excellent Phy∣sitians; Richard surnamed Theologus, and Robert Bacon, two notable Divines; Ste∣phen Langthon, Richard Fisaker, Simon Stokes, Iohn of Kent, William Shirwood, Mi∣chael Blaunpaine, Iohn Godard, Vincent of Coventry, Albericke Veer, Richard Wich, Iohn Basing, Roger Waltham, William Seningham, and others.

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Of his comming to the Crowne,

AS soone as King Henry was dead and buryed, the great Lords of the Land caused his eldest Sonne Prince Edward to be proclaimed King: and assembling at the New Temple in London, they there tooke order for the quiet Governing of the kingdome, till he should come home. For at this time he was absent in the Holy Land; and had beene there a∣bove a yeare when his Father dyed. But we cannot bring him home without telling what he did, and what he suffered in all that time, and in his returne; for at his first comming thither, he rescued the great City of Acon, from being urrendred to the Souldan; after which, out of envy to his Valour, one Anzazim a desperate Saracen, who had often beene employed to him from their Generall, being one time, upon pre∣tence of some secret message, admitted alone into his Chamber, with a poysoned knife gave him three wounds in the Body, two in the Arme, and one neare the arme∣pit, which were thought to be mortall, and had perhaps beene mortall, if out of unspeakeable love, the Lady Eleanor his Wife had not suckt out the poyson of his wounds with her mouth, and thereby effected a cure, which otherwise had beene incurable: and it is no wonder, that love should doe wonders, which is it selfe a wonder. And now being disappointed of Aides that were promised to be sent him, and leaving Garrisons in fit places for defence of the Country, he with his Wife Eleanor takes his journey homewards, and first passing by Sicilie, was there most kindly received by Charles King of that Island, where he first heard of his Fathers death; which he tooke more heavily farre, then he had taken the death of his young Sonne Henry, whereof he had heard a little before; at which when King Charles marvailed, he answered, that other Sonnes might be had, but no∣ther Father could never be had. From hence he passeth through Italy, where much honour is done him both by the Pope and other Princes; and then descends into Burgoigne, where by the Earle of Chalboun, a stout man at Armes, he is challenged at a Turneament, with a pretence to solemnize his presence, but with a purpose indeed to disgrace his person; and though Prince Edward in many respects might Page  128 justly have refused it, yet the noblenesse of his mind would not suffer him to passe by any occasion of shewing his valour and in this 〈…〉 as he made it appeare, that ame had beene no 〈…〉 the report it mae of hi. And here a great part of his English Nobility met 〈◊〉; from whence he passeth in∣to France, where the King Philip his eare Cou•• (as being Sister Sonnes) en∣tertaines him with great solemnity: and graceth his solemnity with so much cour∣tesie, that it wonne Prince Edward volntarily to do him homage for the Territo∣ries he held in France; & this voluntarines in Prince Edward, won the King of France againe to grant quietly unto him, all the Lands in France that belonged to him; and so these two great Kings by reciprocall courtesie effected that, which thei Prede∣cessours by force could never effect. From her 〈◊〉, passeth through Auitaine, and having there taken homage of his Subjects, and set all things in order, he set Saile and arrived in England, above a yeare after the death of his Father: a long time for plotting of mischiefe, and a strong temptation to plotters of mischiefe; if all the causes of quietnesse had not concurred: but such was the worthinesse of Prince Edwards person, and such the undoubtednesse of his Title, that as there could be no Competitour, so there would be no Oppugner And indeed the Divine Pro∣vidence had shewed a speciall care over him from his Child-hood! whereof one or two Examples will not be unfit to be related. One was this, that being yet but young, and playing one time at Chesse with a Friend, in the midst of his game, without any apparent occasion, he removed himselfe from the place where he sate, when suddenly there fell from the roofe of the house a great stone, which if he had stayed in the place but never so little had beaten out his braines. Another Ex∣ample of the Divine Providence over him, (though it happened afterwards) was this: Having prepared a great Fleete of Ships for a journey into Flanders, and be∣ing at Winchelsey, where the Ships were to meete; it happened that riding about the Harbour, his Horse frighted with the noyse of a Windmill, which the wind drove violently about, skrambled up and leapt over the Mudwall of the Towne, so as neither the King nor the Horse was to be seene, but every one judged the King could not chuse but be throwne and killed; yet such was the Divine Provi∣dence over him, that the Horse lighted upon his feet, and the King keeping the Saddle returned safe. And under the wing of this Divine Providence, he had now passed all the dangers of his tedious Journey; and being safely come to London, was on the fifteenth day of August in the yeare 1274. Crowned at Westminster, to∣gether with his Wife Queene Eleanor, by Robert Kilwarby Arch-bishop of Canter∣bury: where five hundred great Horses were let loose, for any that could take them; and yet the outward solemnity was not more great, then the inward joy was univer∣sall, every man rejoycing, not onely at a change, which of it selfe is pleasing, but at a change so much for the better, as this was like to be.

Of his Acts done after he was Crowned.

THe Acts of this King after he was Crowned, may not unfitly be divided into five parts: His Acts with his Temporall Lords; His Acts with his Clergy; Then with Wales; Then his Acts with Scotland; And lastly with France. And first, concerning his Lords, he gave them good contentment in the beginning of his Raigne, by enlarging their liberties, and granting them easier Lawes, for which purpose he called a Parliament, wherein were made the Statutes called of Westmin∣ster the first, so as he had no difference with them, till toward the end of his Raigne, as shall be shewed hereafter. In the next place, concerning his Acts with his Cler∣gy, he began with them betimes; for having lived to be of good age, three or foure and thirty yeares old, in his Fathers Raigne, he observed in that time, that their power was too predominant, and therefore thought fit to clip their wings; at least to keepe them from farther growing: which he did by these meanes: First, in the sixth yeare of his Raigne, he deprived many chiefe Monasteries of their Li∣berties, and tooke from the Abbot and Covent of Westminster, the Returne of Page  129 Writs granted them by the Charter of his Father, King Henry the third. The next yeare after he got to be enacted the Statute of Mortmaine, to hinder the encrease of their Temporall Possessions. In the second Statute of Westminster, he defalked the Jurisdiction of Ecclesiasticall Judges; and growing more upon them, he re∣quired the moity of all their Goods, as well Temporall as Spirituall, for one yeare. Then cals he a Parliament of his Nobles at Salisbury, without admission of any Church-men in it: And it is worth the noting, that Marchian his Trea∣surer, acquainting him that in Churches and Religious houses, there was much treasure to be had, if it might be taken; he made no scruple of it, but caused it to be taken and brought into his Exchequer. But finding his Prelates not well con∣tented with it, to please them againe, he bids them aske something of him, where∣in they should see how much he favoured them. And they asking of him to re∣peale the Statute of Mortmaine, that had beene made so much to their hinderance; He answered, that this was a Statute made by the whole body of the Realme, and therefore was not in his power, who was but one Member of that Body, to undoe that which all the Members together had done; and perhaps whatsoever they should have asked else, he would have had an answer to redeeme his Offer. And thus much concerning his Clergy.

In the next place are the Welsh, who had themselves begun with the King: For their Prince Leolyn being summoned to attend at his Coronation, refused to come; and afterward at more leisure, being required to come and doe his Homage, he stood upon termes of safe conduct, pretending doubt to be used, as his Father Gryf∣fin had beene; who upon hard usage in the Tower, seeking to make escape, fell from the Walls and brake his necke. But indeed it was alwayes a Custome with this Nation, at every change of Princes in England, to try conclusions, hoping at one time or other to have a day of it, and to change their yoke of bondage into li∣berty; for which they were never better Provided then now; especially (which is the greatest matter in Warre) having a Valiant Prince to be their Leader. But there happened an accident which tooke off their edge at this time: For the Lady Eleanor, a Daughter of the late Earle Simon Montford, whom Prince Leolyn ex∣treamely loved, being passing out of France into Wales, was by the way upon the Sea taken by English ships, and brought to King Edward, and for the love of her, Prince Leolyn was content to submit himselfe to any conditions: which besides subjection of his State, was to pay fifty thousand pounds Sterling, and a thousand pounds per annum during his life; and upon these conditions the marriage with his beloved Lady was granted him, and was solemnized here in England, whereat the King and Queene were themselves present. Three yeares Leolyn continued loyall, and within bounds of obedience, in which time David, one of his Brothers, stay∣ing here in England, and found by the King to be of a stirring Spirit, was much ho∣noured by him; Knighted, and matched to a rich Widow, Daughter of the Earle of Darby, and had given him by the King besides, the Castle of Denbigh, with a thousand pounds per annum: though (as it was afterwards found) he lived here but in the nature of a spy: For when Prince Leolyns Lady was afterward dead, and that he (contrary to his Conditions formerly made) brake out into rebellion, then goes his Brother David to him, notwithstanding all these Favours of the King: and they together enter the English Borders: Surprise the Castles of Flynt and Rut∣land, with the person of the Lord Clifford, sent Justiciar into those parts: and in a great Battaile overthrew the Earles of Northumberland and Surrey, with the slaugh∣ter of Sir William Lyndsey, Sir Richard Tanny, and many others. King Edward ad∣vertised of this Revolt and overthrow, being then at the Vyzes in Wiltshire, pre∣pares an Army to represse it; but before his setting forth, goes privately to his Mo∣ther Queene Eleanor, lying at the Nunnery of Aimesbury, with whom whilest he conferred, there was one brought into the Chamber, who faigned himselfe (be∣ing blinde) to have received his sight at the Tombe of King Henry the third: A∣soone as the King saw the man, he remembred he had seene him before, and knew him to be a most notorious lying Villaine, and wished his Mother in no case to be∣leeve Page  130 him: but his mother, who much rejoyced to heare of this Miracle, for the glory of her husband, finding her sonne unwilling that his Father should be a Saint, grew suddenly into such a rage against him, that she commanded him to avoid her Chamber: which the King obeyes; and going forth, meetes with a Clergy man, to whom he tels the story of this Impostour, and merrily said; He knew the justice of his Father to be such, that he would rather pull out the eyes (being whole) of such a wicked wretch, then restore them to their sight. In this meane time the Arch-bishop of Canterbury had gone of himselfe to Prince Leolin, and had labou∣red to bring him and his brother David to a re-submission, but could effect nothing; for besides other reasons that swayed Prince Leolin, the conceit of a Prophesie of Merlin, that he should shortly be Crowned with the Diadem of Brute, so over∣weighed him, that he had no care for peace, and shortly after no head: for after the Earle of Pembroke had taken Bere Castle, which was the seat of Prince Leolin, he was himself slain in battell; and his head cut off by a common Souldier, was sent to King Edw. who caused the same to be Crowned with Ivie, and to be set upon the Tower of London; And this was the end of Leolin, the last of the Welsh Princes, betraied (as some write) by the men of Buelth. Not long after his brother David also is taken in Wales, and judged in England to an ignominious death: First, drawn at a horse taile about the City of Shrewsbury, then beheaded, the trunke of his body divided, his heart and bowels burnt, his head sent to accompany his brothers on the Tower of London, his foure quarters to foure Cities, Bristow, North••pton, York, and Winchester: A manifold execution, and the first shewed in that kind to this kingdome, in the per∣son of the son of a Prince, or any other Noble man that we reade of in our History. It is perhaps something which some here observe, that at the sealing of this con∣quest, King Edward lost his eldest son Alphonsus, of the age of twelve years, (a Prince of great hope) and had onely left to succeed him, his sonne Edward lately borne at Carnarvan, and the first of the English, intituled Prince of Wales, but no Prince worthy of either Wales or England. And thus came Wales to be united to the Crowne of England, in the eleventh yeare of this King Edwards Raigne; who thereupon established the government thereof, according to the Lawes of England, as may be seene by the Statute of Rutland, in the twelfth yeare of his Raigne.

The worke of Wales being setled, King Edward passeth over into France, upon notice of the death of Philip the Hardy, to renew and confirme such conditions as his state in those parts required, with the new King Philip the fourth, intituled the Faire; to whom he doth homage for Aquitaine, having before quitted his claime to Normandy for ever. After three yeares and a halfe being away in France, he returns into England; and now in the next place comes the businesse with Scotland, and will hold him woke at times as long as he lives, and his sonne after him. Alexan∣der the third, King of Scots, as he was running his horse, fell horse and man to the ground, and brake his necke, and died immediately by reason whereof (he lea∣ving no issue, but onely a daughter of his daughter Margaret, who died also soone after) there fell out presently great contention about succession. Ten Competitors pretend title, namely, Erick King of Norway, Florence Earle of Holland, Robert Bruce Earle of Anandale, Iohn de Baylioll Lord of Galloway, Iohn de Hastings Lord of Abergeveny, Iohn Cummin Lord of Badenaw, Patrick de Dunbarre Earle of March, Iohn de Vescie, Nicholas de Suls, William de Rosse; all or most of them decending from David Earle of Huntington, younger brother to William King of Scots, and great Unkle to the late King Alexander. This title King Edward takes upon him to decide, pretending a Right of Superiority from his Ancestours over that kingdome and proving it by authority of old Chronicles, as Marianus Scotus, William of Malms∣bury, Roger de Hoveden, Henry of Huntington, Ralph de Luceto, and others; which though the Scottish Lords who swaied the Interregnum opposed, yet are they con∣strained for avoyding of further inconveniences, to make him Arbiter thereof, and the tenne Competitours bound to stand to his award. Two are especially found, betweene whom the ight lay, Iohn de Baylioll Lord of Galloway, and Robert Brce; the one descending from an elder daughter, the other from a sonne of a younger Page  131 daughter of Alan, who had married the eldest daughter of this David brother to King William. The controversie held long, twelve of either kingdome learned in the Lawes, are elected to debate the same at Berwick; all the best Civilians in the Universities of France are solicited to give their opinions; all which brought forth rather doubts then resolutions: whereupon King Edward the better to sway this businesse by his presence, takes a journey Northward; where being come as farre as Lincolnshire, he lost his beloved wife Queene Eleanor: and thereupon going backe to see her Funerall performed at Westminster: that done, he returnes present∣ly to his Scottish businesse. And now sixe yeares were passed since the death of King Alexander, and yet nothing concluded in this controversie; whereupon King Edward deals privately with Bruce, (who had the weaker Title, but the more friends) and promiseth him, if he would sweare fealty and homage to the Crowne of England, he would Invest him in that of Scotland. But Bruce answers, he was not so dsirous to rule, as thereby to infringe the liberties of his Countrey. Whereupon with the like offer he sets upon Baylioll, who having better right, but lesse love of the people, and more greedy of a kingdome then honour, accepts the condition; and there∣upon is Crowned King at Scone, hath fealty done him by all the chiefe Nobility, except Bruce: comes to New-Castle upon Tyne, where King Edward then lay; and there, with many of his Nobles, sweares fealty, and doth homage to him, as his Soveraigne Lord. Which act done to secure him, overthrew him: for being little beloved before, hereby he became lesse: such as stood for Bruce, and others of the Nobility (tender of the preservation of their Countries liberty) took stomach a∣gainst him; and not onely for this, but shortly after for his injustice in the case of the Earle of Fife, one of the sixe Governours in the time on the Interregnum, who had beene slaine by the Family of Alberneth; the brother of which Earle prose∣cuting Law before King Baylioll, in his high Court of Parliament, and having no right done him (King Baylioll giving judgement of the side of the Alberneths) he ap∣peales to the Court of the King of England: whereupon King Baylioll is summo∣ned, appeares, sits with King Edward in his Parliament till his cause was to be heard, and then is cited by an Officer to arise, and to stand in the place appointed for plea∣ding; then he craves to answer by a Procuratour, but is denied, and thereupon de∣scends to the ordinary place, and defends his cause himselfe: which indignity (as he tooke it) so incenseth him, that he returnes home with a breastfull charged with indignation; meditates revenge, renues the ancient league with France, confirmes it with marriage of his sonne Edward, to a daughter of Charles brother to King Phi∣lip, glad in regard of late offences taken against the King of England, to embrace the same; which done, Baylioll defies King Edward, renounceth his Allegeance, as unlawfully done, being not in his power, without consent of the State, to doe any such Act. Hereupon brake out that mortall dissension betweene the two Nations, which consumed more Christian bloud, and continued longer then ever quarrell we reade of did, between any two people in the world. For he that beganne it, could not end it, but it lasted almost three hundred yeares, and was never throughly abo∣lished, till the late blessed union wrought by him in whom Wisdome and Vertue, Right and Power concurred all to make it firme. And now the fatall Chaire in which the Kings of Scotland used to be Inaugurated, seemes to recover its secret operation, according to antient Prophesie: that whither soever that Chaire should be removed, the kingdome should be removed with it; and this Chaire King Ed∣ward caused to be brought out of Scotland to Westminster, and to be placed there amongst the Monuments, where it still continues. But now King Baylioll being summoned to appeare at New-Castle, and refusing to come; King Edward enters Scotland with an Army, consisting of foure thousand horse, and thirty thousand foot, besides five hundred horse, and one thousand foote of the Bishop of Durham. Ber∣wicke is first wonne, with the slaughter of fifteene thousand Scots; (our Writers say more) and after that, the Castles of Dunbarre, Roxborough, Edinbough, Sterlig, and Saint Iohns Towne; and now King Balioll sues for Peace, submits himselfe, takes againe his Oath of Fealty to King Edward, as his Soveraigne Lord: which done, Page  132 a Parliament for Scotland is held at Berwicke, where the Nobility likewise did Ho∣mage to him, confirming the same by their Charter, under their hands and seales: onely William Dowglasse refuseth; content rather to endure the misery of a Prison, then yeeld to the subjection of the King of England. But King Baylioll, notwith∣standing his submission, is sent prisoner into England after his foure yeares Raigne in Scotland; and King Edward returnes home, leaving Iohn Warren Earle of Sussex and Surrey, Warden of all Scotland; Hugh Cressingham Treasurer, and Ormesloy Chiefe Justice, with Commission to take in his name, the Homages and Fealties of all such as held Lands of that Crowne. But this continued not long, for King Ed∣ward being absent in France, the Scots fell upon the Officers he had left; slew Sir Hugh Cressingham with sixe thousand English, recovered many Castles, and regained the towne of Berwick, and all by the animation and conduct of one William Walleys, a poore private Gentleman, (though Nobly descended) who seeing his Countrey without a Head, and thereby without a Heart (all the great men, either in captivity or subjection assembles certaine of as poore and desperate estate as himselfe, and leads them to attempt upon whatsoever advantages they could finde to annoy the English, and having therein good successe, it so encreased both his courage and company, that he afterward came to be the generall Guardian of the whole king∣dome; and was in possibility to have absolutely redeemed his Countrey from the subjection of the English, if the speedy comming of King Edward had not preven∣ted him. For now King Edward, to bring his worke neare together, removes his Exchequer and Courts of Justice to Yorke, where they continued above sixe yeares; and thither he cals a Parliament, requiring all his subjects that held of him by knights service, to be ready at Roxborough by a peremptory day: where there assem∣ble three thousand men at Armes on barded horses, and foure thousand other ar∣med men on horse without bards, with an Army of foote answerable, consisting most of Welsh and Irish, besides five hundred men at Armes out of Gascoyne; and with this power he makes his second expedition into Scotland: the Earles of Here∣ford and Norfolke, with the Earle of Lincolne, led his Vauntgard at the famous bat∣tell of Fonkirke, where the shouts of the Scots were so great, that King Edwards horse frighted withall, cast him off, and brake two of his ribs; which notwithstan∣ding he gets up againe, goes on, and gets the victory; wherein are reported to be slaine two hundred knights, and forty thousand foot of the Scots: but William Walleys with some few, escaped to make more work. And here againe that kingdome might seeme as if quite overthrowne. Most of the estates of the Earles and Barons of Scotland (with their titles) that had stood out, were bestowed on the English; and a Parliament is called at Saint Andrewes, where all the great men of that kingdome, except onely Walleys, once againe sweare Fealty to the King of England. It seemes swearing of Fealty was with the Scots but a Ceremony without substance, as good as nothing: for this is now the third time they swore Fealty to King Edward; yet all did not serve to make them loyall: for not long after, comes the newes of a new King made and Crowned in Scotland: Robert Bruce Earle of Carrick, sonne to that Bruce who was competitour with Baylioll, escaping out of England, becomes Head to the confused Body of that kingdome: and perceiving Iohn Cummyn (who had a title himselfe) to goe about to bewray his intentions to King Edward; he finding him at Dunfrayes, sets upon him, and murthers him in the Church. Whereof as soone as King Edward heard, he sends Aymer de Valence, Earle of Pembroke, and the Lords Clifford and Percie, with a strong power to revenge the death of Cummyn, and to relieve his Wardens of Scotland; who upon Bruces revolt, were all retired to Berwicke, whilst himselfe prepares an Army to follow: wherein to be the more nobly attended, he caused Proclamation to be made, that whosoever ought by their Paternall succession, or otherwise had meanes of their owne for service, should repaire to Westminster, at the Feast of Pentecost, to receive the Order of knighthood, and a Military Ornament out of the Kings Wardrobe. Hereupon three hundred young Gentlemen, all the sonnes of Earles, Barons, and knights, assemble at the day appointed, and receive Purples, silkes, Sindons, Scarffes, wrought with Page  133 Gold or Silver, according to every mans Estate. For which traine (because the Kings House was too little, by reason a part of it had beene lately burnt) roome is made, and the Apple-trees cut downe at the new Temple for their Tents, where they attire themselves, and keepe their Vigile. The Prince (whom the King then likewise knighted, and gave him the Dutchy of Aquitaine, kept his Vigile with his Traine at Westminster, and the next day girds these three hundred knights, with the Military Belt, in such manner as he himselfe had received it. Which done, the King before them all makes a Vow, that alive or dead, he would revenge the death of Cummyn upon Bruce, and the perjured Scots: Adjuring his Sonne and all the Nobles about him, upon their Fealty, that if he dyed in this Journey, they should carry his Corps with them about Scotland, and not suffer it to be interred, till they had vanquished the Usurper, and absolutely brought the Country to Subjection. The Prince and all the Nobles promise upon their Faith, to imploy their uttermost power to performe his Vow: and herewithall he sets forth with a potent Army, presently after Whitsontide, and makes his last Expedition into Scotland, in the foure and thirtieth yeare of his Raigne.

The Earle of Pembroke, with that power sent before, and aid of the Scottish par∣ty, had before the King arrived in Scotland, defeated in a battaile neare Saint Iohns Towne, the whole Army of the new King, and narrowly missed the taking of his Person, but he escaping in disguise, and sheltring himselfe in obscure places, was reserved for greater Battailes, his Brothers Nigell, Bruce, and shortly after, Thomas and Alexander a Priest, were taken and Executed after the manner of Traytors at Berwicke. And now King Edward had done for Fighting, all was now for Exe∣cutions, and indeed his desire of Revenge made him inexorable, and vow to spare none of what degree soever. The Earle of Atholl, (though of Royall blood, and allyed unto him) was sent to London, where all his preferment was, to have a high∣er paire of Gallowes then the rest. The Wife of Robert Bruce, taken by the Lord Rosse, is sent Prisoner to London, and his Daughter to a Monastery in Lindsey. The Countesse of Boughan, who had beene ayding at Bruces Coronation, is put into a woodden Cage, and hung out upon the walls of Berwicke for people to gaze on. But though Bruces party was thus dejected, and himselfe at this time appeared not, but shifted privily from place to place, in a distressed manner, (attended onely with two Noble Gentlemen, who neeer forsooke him in his misfortunes, the Earle of Lenox and Gilbert Hay) yet gives he not over, but gathers new Forces, with which he suddenly assailes the Earle of Pembroke at unawares, gives him a great defeate, and within three dayes after chaseth the Earle of Glocester into the Ca∣stle of Aire, where he besieged him, till by the Kings Forces he was driven againe to his former retire. Whereupon King Edward, who had spent his Winter at Car∣lile, in Iuly following with a fresh Army enters Scotland himselfe, but falling into a Dysentery or Bloody-flix, at Borough upon the Sands he ended his life: and thus ended King Edwards troubles with Scotland, but not Englands troubles, which are more to come, then yet are past.

But though this businesse of Scotland never left King Edward till his dying day, yet it had been upon him but as an Ague, sometimes putting him into violent heats, and sometimes leaving him in a quiet temper, with such a vicissitude, that when he had quietnesse with Scotland, he had troubles with France, whereof the time is now to speake. It is well knowne, that Philip King of France, Father of the present King, and Edward King of England were neare Cousins, the Sonnes of two Sisters; and it hath beene shewed before at King Edwards returning from the Holy Land, and passing through France, what extraordinary kindnesse and mutuall courtesie passed betweene them, that one would have thought neither they no theirs should ever have falne out: and perhaps never should, if they had beene private men, and not Princes. For private men may easily continue Friends, as having none to con∣sider but themselves; but Princes hardly, as having besides themselves, their Sub∣jects to consider. And though they be the Subjects oftentimes that make the Quar∣rell, yet they are the Princes that must maintaine it. And besides, betweene Prin∣ces Page  134 there can never be but jealousies, and where jealousies are, every trifle makes a quarrell. And this was the case of these two Kings, certaine of the King of Eng∣lands Subjects, had upon the Coast of Normandy done spoyle to some Subjects of the King of France: and this difference of the Subjects made a difference betweene the Kings, while each of them standing in defence of his owne, fall out themselves; and for a beginning the King of France summons King Edward, as owing homage to that Crowne, to appeare and answer it in his Court. And King Edward, though voluntarily before he had done it in a way of Courtesie, yet being now impetiously commanded, he refuseth it: upon which refusall, all his Territories in France are condemned to be forfaited, and an Army is presently sent to seise upon the same, led by Charles de Valois, and Arnold de Neele, Constable of France. Burdeaux; with divers other Peecs of importance, are taken from him. And now King Edward well knowing what danger it was to have so powerfull an Adversary; endevours first to strengthen himselfe with Friends abroad, seekes to match his Sonne Ed∣ward with a Daughter of Guy Earle of Flanders: Marries one of his Daughters to the Dke of Barr, who pretended Title to Champaigne; another to Iohn Duke of Braant; sends fifteene thousand pounds Sterling to Adolph de Nassaw the Empe∣rour, for recovery of certaine Lands which he claimed in France; and with all these and many other conining Princes, he sets upon the King of France, and then sends over his Brother Edmund Earle of Lancaster, the Earles of Lincolne and Rich∣mond, with eight and twenty Banners, seven hundred men at Armes, and a Navy of three hundred and sixty Saile. In the meane time the King of France, having had intelligence of the intended alliance betweene King Edward, and Guy Earle of Flanders, sends for the said Earle (as if knowing nothing thereof) to come with his Wie and Daughter to make merry with him at Paris: where instead of Feasting him, he makes him Prisoner, and takes from him his Daughter, in regard he sought (being his Vassall) to match her with his capitall Enemy. The Earle excuseth it the best he could, and by much mediation is released himselfe, but not his Daugh∣ter; whereupon the Earle, presuming upon aide from King Edward, takes Armes, and defies the King of France; who thereupon comes with an Army of sixty thou∣sand against him: which caused King Edward, with all speed possible to relieve this distressed Earle; and so leaving the Government of the kingdome in his absence, to the Bishop of London, the Earle of Warwicke, and the Lords Reynold, Grey, and Clifford; with five hundred Saile, and eighteene thousand men at Armes, he pas∣seth over into France, but finding the Country distracted into many popular Facti∣ons, and the King of France daily getting upon them, (having already won Lisle, Doway, Courtray, Burges and Dam) and the Emperour Adolph failing to send him aide as he had promised, he fell into great perplexity: and having stayed the whole Winter at Gaunt, where by reason of many outrages committed by his Souldiers, he was so affronted by the Gauntois, that his owne person was not without some danger; He thereupon in the Spring of the yeare, concludes a Truce with the King of France for two yeares, takes his sister Margaret to Wife, and affianceth the Daughter of the same King to his Sonne Prince Edward, and so returnes into Eng∣land: And these were all the troubles King Edward had with France.

But now must something be spoken of troubles with his Lords at home, where∣of this was the beginning: In a Parliament at Salisbury, the five and twentieth yeare of his Raigne, the King requires certaine of his Lords to goe to the Warres in Gascoyne; which needed a present supply by reason of the death of his Brother Edmund: but the Lords make all their excuses, every man for himselfe: Where∣upon the King in great rage threatned, they should either goe, or he would give their Lands to others that should. Upon this Humfrey Bohun Earle of Hereford, High Constable, and Roger Bigod Earle of Norfolke, Marshall of England, make their Declaration, that if the King went in Peron they would attend him; otherwise not. Which answer offended the King more, and being urged againe, the Earle Marshall protested he would willingly goe thither with the King, and march before him in the Vauntguard, as by right of inheritance he ought to doe; But the King Page  135 told him plainely, he should goe with any other, though he we•• not himselfe in Person I am not so bound (saith the Earle) neither will I take t••t journey with∣out you. The King swore by God, Sir Earle, you shall either goe or h•••• And I sweare by the same Oath (said the Earle) I will neither goe no hang and so without leave departs. Shortly after the two Earles assemble many Noble men, and other their Friends, to the number of thirty Banneres, so as they were fifteen hundred men at Armes, well appointed, and stood upon their Gu••d The King like a prudent Prince, who knew his times, prosecues them not as then, b•• lets the matter passe, in regard that his businesse called him presently into Flanders; when being ready to take ship, the Arch-bishops, Bishops, Earles, Barons, and the Commons send him a Roll of the Grievances of his Subjects, concerning his Taxes, Subsidies, and other Impositions, with his seeking to force their services by unlawfull courses: to which the King sends answer, that he could not atr a∣ny thing without the advice of his Councell, who were not now about him, and therefore required them, seeing they would not attend him in his Journey, (which they absolutely refused to doe, though he went in Person, unlesse he had gone in∣to France or Scotland) that they would yet doe nothing in his absence, prejudii∣all to the peace of the kingdome; and that at his returne, he would set all things in good order to their contentment. But having taken his Journey, and being held there with long delayes, to his exceeding great expenses, he was forced to send o∣ver for more supply of Treasure; and thereupon gave order for a Parliament to be held at Yorke by the Prince, and (because of his Minority, for he was then but sixteene yeares of age) by such as had the manage of the kingdome in his absence: and to the end he would not be disappointed of aide, he condescends to all such Ar∣ticles as were demanded, concerning the great Charter: Promising from thence∣forth never to charge his Subjects otherwise then by their consents in Parliament, and to pardon all such as had denyed to attend him in this Journey. After this, in the 27. yeare of his Raigne, a Parliament is called at Westminster, wherein the pro∣mised Confirmation of the two Charters, and the allowance of what disafforesta∣tion had heretofore beene made, was earnestly urged, and in the end with much adoe Granted; and that with omission of the Clause, Salva Iure Coronae nostr: which the King laboured to have inserted, but the people by no meanes would a∣gree, and the perambulation of the Forests of England was then committed to three Bishops, three Earles, and three Barons. But some yeares after, in the two and thirtieth yeare of his Raigne, King Edward begunne to shew his resentment of the stubborne behaviour of his Nobles towards him in times past; and so terrifies Ro∣ger Bigod, Earle Marshall, that to recover his favor the Earle made him his Heire in Possession; (though he had a Brother of his owne living) reserving onely to him∣selfe a thousand pounds per annum, during his life. Of others likewise he go great summes for the same offence; The Earle of Hereford escaped his fine by death. But the Arch-bishop of Canterbury, (whom he accused to have disturbed his Peace in his absence) he sends over to Pope Clement the fifth, (who succeeded Bonifac) that he might be crusht with a double power. This Pope was Native of Burdeaux, and o the more regardfull of the Kings desire; and the King the more confident of his favour; which to entertaine and encrease, King Edward sends him a whole furnish of all vessels for his Chamber of cleane Gold: which great gift so wroght with the Pope, that he untied the King from the Covenant made with his Subjects concerning their Charters, confirmed unto them by his last three Acts of Parli∣ment, and absolved him from his Oath: A safe time for Princes, when they might¦tye themselves in any obligation to their Subjects, and afterward for a bribe to the Pope be untyed againe.

His Taxations, and wayes for raising of money.

IF Taxations may suffer degrees of comparison, it may not unfily be said of these three last Kings, that King Iohn was in the Positive; his Sonne Henry the third Page  136 in the Comparative: and this King Edward in the Superlative. For not onely he farre exceded th two former, but he hath left a spell to all that come after, for ever comming neare him: but then under the name of Taxations, wee must include the wayes he tooke for raising of profit. But first in the way of Parliament. In the first yeare of his Raigne, was granted him a tenth of the Clergy for two years, besides a fifteenth of them and the Temporalty. In his fifth yeare, a twentieth of their goods towards the Welsh warres. In his seventh, the old money was called in, and new coyned, in regard it had beene much defced by the Iewes; for which 297. were at one time executed in London: and this brought in profit of no small va∣lue. In his eleventh yeare, he had a thirtieth of the Temporalty, and a twentieth of the Clergy, for his warres in Wales. In the thirteenth, Escuage, forty shillings of every knights Fee. In his foureteenth yeare, he had a thousand Markes of cer∣taine Merchants Fined for false weights. In his nineteenth, the eleventh part of all movables of the Clergy, and shortly after a tenth for sixe yeares. In his twen∣tieth, William Marchyan then Lord Treasurer of England, perceiving great riches to be in Churches and religious houses, put it so into the Kings head, that they were all brought into the Kings Treasury. In the eighth yeare of his Raigne, he sent ou his Writ Quo Warrant, to examine by what title men held their lands; which brought him in much money, till Iohn Earle of Warren, being called to shew his title, drew out an old rusty Sword, and then said, He held his land by that, and by that would hold it to death; which though it made the King desist from his Project, yet he obtained at that time a fifteenth part of the Clergy. In his seventeenth yeare he Fined all his Judges for corruption: Sir Ralph Higham Chiefe Justice of the high∣er Bench, in seven thousand Markes: Sir Iohn Loveton Justice of the lower Bench, in three thousand Markes: Sir William Brompton, in sixe thousand Markes: Sir Sl∣mon Rochester, in foure thousand Markes: Sir Richard Boyland, in foure thousand: Sir Walter Hopton, in two thousand: Sir William Saham, in three thousand: Robert Lith∣bury Master of the Rolls, in one thousand: Roger Leycester, in one thousand: He••y Bray Escheatour, and Judge for the Iewes, in one thousand: but Sir Adam Stratt•• chiefe Baron of the Exchequer, in foure and thirty thousand: and Thomas Wayland (found the greatest Delinquent, and of the greatest substance) had all his goods, and whole estate confiscated to the King; and himselfe banished out of the king∣dome. In his eighteenth yeare he banished the Iewes; of whom there was at that time above fifteen thousand in the kingdom, who had but all their goods confiscate leaving them onely meanes to beare their charges in going away.

In his foure and twentieth yeare, he commanded a new Subsidy to be levied up∣on all sarplers of Wooll going out of England: as likewise with Fels and Hides. In his five and twentieth yeare, he cals a Parliament at Saint Edmundsbery, where is granted the eighth part of the goods of good Townes, and of other people the twelfth. As for the Clergy, they desire to be excused, and refuse to contribute, in regard of their many late paiments; as in the two and twentieth yeare of his Raigne, they paied the moty of their goods: and in his three and twentieth yeare, he seied into his hands, all Priories aliens and their goods: besides he had a loane of the Clergy, which amounted to an hundred thousand pounds: but notwithstan∣ding upon this refusall of the Clergy, the King puts all Clergy men out of his protection, whereby they were to have no Justice in any of his Courts; (a straine of State beyond any of his Predecessours) which so amazed them, that in the end, the Arch-bishop of Yorke, with the Bishops of Durham, Ely, Salisbury, and Lincolne, yeelded to lay downe in their Churches, the fifth part of all their goods towards the maintenance of the Kings warres; whereby they appeased his wrath, and wer received into grace. But the Arch-bishop of Canterbury, by whose animation the rest stood out, had all his goods seised on, and all the Monasteries within his Dio∣cese, taken into the Kings hands, and Wardens appointed to minister onely neces∣saries to the Monkes, conveting the rest to the Kings use: at length by much suite, and Abbots and Priests, giving the fourth part of their goods, redeeme themselves, and the Kings favour. In the sixe and twentieth yeare of his Raigne, at a Parli∣ament Page  137 holden at Yorke, is granted him the ninth penny of the goods of the Tem∣poralty: the tenth penny of the Clergy of the Diocese of Canterbury, and of Yorke the fifth: and in this yeare also he raised the Imposition upon every sack of Wooll, from a noble to forty shillings. In his two and thirtieth yeare he sends out a new Writ of Inquisition, called Traile-baston, for intruders on other mens lands; who to oppresse the right owner, would make over their land to great men; for Batte∣rers hired to beate men, for breakers of Peace, for Ravishers, Incendiaries, Murthe∣rers, Fighters, false Assisours, and other such Malefactours: which Inquisition was so strictly executed, and such Fines taken, that it brought in exceeding much treasure to the King. As likewise did another Commission at the same time, sent forth to examine the behaviour of Officers, and Ministers of Justice; wherein many were found Delinquents, and paid dearly for it. At this time also he called his Lords to account for their stubbornnesse some yeares before, in denying to attend him into Flanders; which brought him in profit answerable to their greatnesse that were cal∣led. After all this, in his foure and thirtieth yeare, there is granted him the thirti∣eth penny of both Clergy and Laity, and the twentieth of all Merchants towards his journey into Scotland. And this may be sufficient to shew his Taxations to have beene in the Superlative degree. And yet besides these, he had no small be∣nefit by Silver Mines, which in his time were found in Devonshire.

Of his Lawes and Ordinances.

IN the first yeare of his Raine were made the Statutes called of Westminster the first. In his twelfth yeare were made the Statutes of Acton Burnell. In the foure∣teenth yeare of his Raigne were made the Statutes called Additamenta Glocestriae. He ordained such men to be Sheriffes in every County, as were of the same Coun∣ty where they were to be Sheriffes. He ordained that Iewes should weare a Cogni∣sance upon their upper Garment whereby to be knowne, and restrained their ex∣cessive taking of Usury. In his time was also Enacted the Statute of Mortmaine. In his twelfth yeare, in the Quindenes of Saint Michael, the Justices Itinerants be∣ganne to goe their generall Circuits. In his time new pleces of money were coy∣ned, and halfe pence of Silver came to be in use, which were before of base me∣tall. In his time, three men for rescuing a prisoner, arrested by an Officer, had their right hands cut off by the wrists. In his time all Iewes were banished out of the Realme. This King by Proclamation prohibited the burning of Sea-coale in London and the Suburbs, for avoiding the noysome smoake. In his eleventh yeare the Bakers of London were first drawne upon Hurdles, by Henry Waleys Major; and Corne was then first sold by weight. In this Kings time the title of Baron which had before beene promiscuous to men of estate, was first confined to such onely as by the King were called to have voice in Parliament.

Affaires of the Church in his time.

IN his time, at a Synod holden at Reading by the Arch-bishop of Cnterbury, it was ordained according to the Constitutions of the Generall Councell, that no Ecclesiasticall person should have more then one Benefice, to which belonged the Cure of soules: and that every person promoted to any Ecclesiasticall Living, should take the Order of Priesthood within one yeare after. In his time lived and died Pope Boniface the 8. of whom his Predecessour had Prophesied: Ascendes ut Vulpes, Regnabis ut Leo, Morieris ut Canis.

Workes of Piety done by him, or by others in his time.

THis King Founded the Abbey of the Vale Royall in Cheshire, of the Cisteaux Order. In his time Iohn Baylioll King of Scots, builded Baylioll Colledge in Oxford: also in his time, Walter Marton Lord Chancellour of England, and after Page  138 Bishop of Rochester, Founded Marton Colledge in Oxford, who was drowned pas∣sing over the water at Rochester, being at that time no Bridge there, as now there is. In his time was finished the new worke of the Church of Westminster, which had bene threescore and sixe yeares in building. In his time was laid the Foundation of the Black-Friers besides Ludgate, and of Baynards Castle: also in his time, his second wife Queene Margaret beganne to build the Quire of the Gray-Friers in London. In his time was begunne to be made the great Conduit in London, standing against the Church called Acres in Cheape. In his time Henry Walleys, Major of Lon∣don, caused the Tonne upon Cornhill, to be a Prison for night-walkers: and also builded a house called the Stocks, for a Market of fish and flesh, in the midst of the City. In this Kings time, Edmund Earle of Leycester, the Kings brother, Founded the Minories, a Nunnery without Aldgate. This King builded the Castle of Flint in Wales, and the Castle of Beaumaris in the Ile of Anglesey, and the Castle of Car∣narvan by Snowdon. Also in this Kings time, Iohn Peckham Arch-bishop of Can∣terbury, Founded a Colledge of Canons at Wingham in Kent.

Casualties happening in his time.

IN the second yeare of this Kings Raigne, there happened the greatest rot of Sheepe in England that ever was knowne, which continued five and twenty years; and came (as was thought) by one infected Sheepe of incredible greatnesse, brought out of Spaine by a French Merchant into Northumberland. In the fifteenth yeare of this Kings Raigne, Wheate was sold for tenne Groats a Quarter; where the next yeare after there was so great a Dearth, that it was sold for eighteene pence the Bushell. In the seventeenth yeare of his Raigne, there fell so much raine, that Wheate was raised from three pence the Bushell, to sixteene pence; and so encrea∣sed yearely, till at last it was sold for twenty shillings the Quarter. And this yeare the City of Carlile, and the Abbey with all the houses belonging to the Friers Mi∣nors, was consumed with fire. In his one and twentieth yeare, a great part of the Towne of Cambridge, with the Church of our Lady, was also burnt. In the seven and twentieth yeare of his Raigne, his Palace at Westminster, and the Monastery adjoyning, were consumed with fire. The Monastery of Glocester also was burnt to the ground. In this yeare also, an Act of Common Counsell, by consent of the King, was made concerning victuals; a fat Cocke to be sold for three halfe pence, two Pullets for three halfe pence, a fat Capon for two pence halfe penny, a Goose foure pence, a Mallard three halfe pence, a Partridge three halfe pence, a Pheasant foure pence, a Hearon sixe pence, a Plover one penny, a Swanne three shillings, Crane twelve pence, two-Woodcocks three halfe pence, a fat Lambe from Christ∣mas to Shrovetide, sixteene pence; and all the yeare after for foure pence.

Of his Wives and Children.

HE had two Wives, his first was Eleanor, daughter to Ferdinand the third King of Spaine; and was married to him at Bres in Spaine: who having lived with him sixe and thirty years, in a journey with him towards Scotland, at Herdeby in Lin∣colneshire she died; in whose memory, and as Monuments of her vertue, and his af∣fection, King Edward caused Crosses with her Statue to be erected in all chiefe pla∣ces, where her Corps in carrying to Westminster, rested: as at Stamford, Dunstable, Saint Albons, Waltham, Cheapside; and lastly, at the place called Charing Crosse: she was buried in Westminster, at the feete of King Henry the third, under a faire Marble Tombe, adorned with her Portraiture of Copper guilt. By this wife, King Edward had foure sonnes and nine daughters; his eldest sonne, Iohn; his second, Henry; his third, Alphonsus; died all young in their Fathers time: his fourth sonne, Ed∣ward, called of Carnarva, because borne there, succeeded him in the kingdome. Of his daughters, the eldest named Eleanor, was first married by Proxie to Alphonsus, King of Arragon; but he dying before the marriage solemnied, she was afterward Page  139 married at Bristow, to Henry Earle of Barry in France; by whom she had issue, sons and daughters. Ioane the second daughter of King Edward and Queene Eleanor, borne at Acon in the Holy Land, was married to Gylbert Clare called the Red Earle of Glocester and Hereford; by whom she had issue, sonnes and daughters. She survived her husband, and was re-married to the Lord Ralph Monthermere, Father to Margaret the mother of Thomas Montacute, Earle of Salisbury; from whom the now Vicount Montacue is descended. Margaret the third daughter of King Edward and Queene Eleanor, was married to Iohn Duke of Brabant. Berenger and Alice, their fourth and fifth daughters, dying young and unmarried. Mary their sixth daughter, at tenne yeares of her age, was made a Nunne in the Monastery of Amesbury in Wiltshire, at the instance of Queene Eleanor her Grandmother, who lived there. Elizabeth their seventh daughter, was first married to Iohn Earle of Holland, Zeland, and Lord of Freezeland; he dying within two yeares, she was afterward married to Hum∣phrey Bohun Earle of Hereford and Essex, Lord of Breknok, and High Constable of England; by whom she had issue, sonnes and daughters. Beatrice and Blanch, their eighth and ninth daughters, died young and unmarried. King Edwards second Wife was Margaret, eldest daughter of Philip King of France, called the Hardy, and sister to Philip called the Faire; at eighteene yeares old she was married to King Edward, being above threescore; yet at the unequall yeares she had issue by him, two sonnes and a daughter: their eldest sonne was borne at a little Village in Yorkshire called Brotherton, and was thereof called Thomas of Brotherton: he was created Earle of Norfolke, and Earle Marshall of England, after Roger Bigod, who died without issue. Their second sonne Edmund, was borne at Woodstocke in Ox∣fordshire, and of the place was so called: he was created Earle of Kent, and married Margaret daughter of Iohn, and sister of sole Heire of Thomas Lord Wakes of Ly∣dell in the County of Northampton; by whom he had issue two sonnes and one daughter: his sonnes Edmund and Iohn, died without issue; his daughter Ioane, for her beauty called the Faire maid of Kent, was married first to William Montacute Earle of Salisbury, and from him divorced; was re-married to Sir Thomas Holland, in her Right Earle of Kent, and by her, Father of Thomas and Iohn Holland, Duke of Surrey, and Earle of Huntington: and lastly, she was the Wife of Edward of Wood∣stocke, the blacke Prince of Wales; and by him Mother of King Richard the second. This Earle Edmund was beheaded at Winchester, in the fourth yeare of King Edward his Nephew. Eleanor, the daughter of King Edward by his second Wife Margaret, died in her childhood.

Of his personage and conditions.

HE was tall of stature, higher then ordinary men by head and shoulders, and thereof called Longshanke; of a swarthy complection, strong of body, but leane; of a comely favour; his eyes in his anger, sparkling like fire; the haire of his head black and curled. Concerning his conditions, as he was in warre peace∣full; so in Peace he was warlike, delighting specially in that kinde of hunting, which is to kill Stagges or other wilde beasts with Speares. In continencie of life, he was equall to his Father; in acts of valour, farre beyond him. He had in him the two wisdomes, not often found in any, single; both together, seldome or never: An ability of judgement in himselfe, and a readinesse to heare the judgement of o∣thers. He seemed to be a great observer of opportunity (a great point of wisdome in any, in Princes greatest) and that he could beare an injury long, without seeking to revenge it; as appeared by his carriage towards the Earle Roger Bigod, whom when he saw his time, he called to account for an affront he had offered him diers yeares before. He was not easily provoked into passion, but once in passion, not easi∣ly appeased, as was seene by his dealing with the Scots; towards whom he shewed at first patience, and at last severity. If he be censured for his many Taxations, he may be justified by his well bestowing them; for never Prince laid out his money to more honour of himselfe, or good of his kingdome. His greatest unfortunatenesse Page  140 was in his greatest blessing; for of foure sonnes which he had by his Wife Queen Eleanor, three of them died in his owne life time, who were worthy to have out-lived him; and the fourth out-lived him, who was worthy never to have beene borne.

Of his death and buriall.

IN his last expedition into Scotland, being at Carlile, he fell sicke; and lying in his death-bed, he sent for his sonne Edward: to whom, besides many admonitions to Piety; he commanded three things specially: that he should carry his bones about with him through Scotland till he had subdued it: that he should send his heart into the Holy Land, with sevenscore knights to that warre, and the two and thirty thou∣sand pounds he had provided for that purpose; and that he should never recall Gaveston from banishment: and soon after of a dysentery or Bloudy-Flix, he died at Borough upon the Sands, the seventh of Iuly, in the yeare 1307. when he had Raigned foure and thirty yeares and seven moneths, lived threescore and eight yeares: Be∣ing dead, his Corps was brought to Waltham Abbey, and there kept the space of six∣teene weekes, and after, on Simon and Iudes day buried at Westminster.

Men of Note in his time.

OF Martiall men there were many, these specially: Iohn Earle of Warren, who opposed the Kings Inquisition by Quo Warranto: and Roger Bigod, who gave the King an affront to his face. Of learned men also many, specially these; Iohn Breton bishop of Hereford, who compiled a book of the Lawes of England, called l Breton: Thomas Spot a Chronographer: Iohn Eversden a writer of Annals, and of this Kings Raigne: Gregory Cairugent a Monke of Glocester, and a writer also of Annals. Iohn Peckham a Franciscan Frier, made Arch-bishop of Canterbury, who writ many excellent workes: Iohn Read an Historiographer: Thomas Bungey a Frier Minor, an excellent Mathematician: Roger Bacon a Franciscan Frier, an excellent Philosopher and Mathematician: Robert Kilwarby Arch-bishop of Canterbury, and after made a Cardinall: also Ralph Baldock Bishop of London, who writ a Chronicle of England in the Latine tongue: but above them all, though of another Countrey, Thomas A∣quinas, borne of a Noble Family, whose workes are too famous to be spoken of; who going to the Councell holden at Lyons by Pope Gregory the tenth, died by the way.

Page  141


Of his Acts before, and at his Coronation.

EDward of Carnarvan, eldest Sonne of King Edward the first, succeeded him in the kingdome; and never did Prince come to a Crowne with more applause of Nobility and People; and there was good cause for it: For he had beene trained up in all good courses for Piety and Learning; he had seene the Government of his Father, from whose Example he could not but have learned many good Lessons; he had been initiated in the wayes of State, having beene left Gover∣nour of the Realme, and presiding in Parliament in his Fa∣thers absence; and he was now three and twenty yeares old, a fit age for bearing the weight of a Scepter; and yet for all these advantages, there wanted not feares of him in the mindes of many, who could not but remember what prankes he had played not long before; how he had broken the Bishop of Chesters Parke, and in most disorderly manner had killed his Deere, for which both himselfe had beene committed to Prison, and his Friend Pierce Gaveston banished the Realme: and if he did such things being but Prince, what might not be feared of him comming to be King? For seldome doth advancement in honour alter men to the better; to the worse often, and commonly then, when it is joyned with an Authority that sets them above controlement. Neither yet was their feare more out of what they had seene, then out of what they saw; for where he should have endevoured to accomplish the charge his Father had given him in his death-bed, he seemed to intend nothing lesse: nothing more then wholly to breake it; for he presently called home Pierce Gaveston from banishment; and the two and thirty thousand pounds, which his Father had specially appointed for the Holy Warre; either all or the most of it he betowed upon Gaveston: and for carrying his Fathers bones with him about Scotland; it had beene well if he had suffered them quietly to be laid at rest in England; for after the Corps had beene kept above ground, sixteene weekes in the Abbey of Waltham, and that the Bishop of Chester, Walter Langton, the then Lord Treasurer, and Executor of his Fathers Will, was busie in prepa∣ring for his Funerals; he sent the Constable of the Tower to arrest him, and im∣prison him at Wallingford, seising upon all his Goods, and giving them to Gaveston; and all for old grudges. And (that which seemed a high straine of incongruity) Page  142 before he had seene performed his Fathers Funerals, which was not till the 27. of October following; he entred into Treatie of his owne Nuptials, forgoing over to Boleigne, on the two and twentieth of Ianuary, he marryed Isabell, the Daughter of Philip the Faire, King of France: which Marriage was honoured with the pre∣sence of foure Kings, the King of France himselfe, the King of Navrre his Sonne, the King of the Romans, and the King of Sicilie: and three Queenes besides the Bride, Mary Queene of France, Margaret the Dowager Queene of England, and the Queene of Navarre: and yet did Gavestn exceed them all in bravery. This was observed by the Lords of England: and thereupon when his Queene and he came afterward to be Crowned, they went unto him, signifying what a hainous transgression of his Fathers will it was to call home Gveston; and seeing the charge was no lesse given to them then to him, if he did not performe it they would; and therefore unlesse he would remove Gaveston from the Court and kingdome, they would hinder his Coronation from proceeding: which strooke such a dampe to Prince Edwards spirits, to thinke what a disgrace it would be to him; if so many of his great Friends being present, Charles of Valois, the King of Frances Brother, the Dukes of Britaine and Brabant, the Count of Luxenburg, who was afterward Em∣peror, the Duke of Savoy, the two Dutchesses of Brabant & Artois, with many other Princes and great Ladies, if now his Coronation should be called in question, that he solemnly swore he would do what they desired in the next Parliament, so they would be quiet now; and thereupon, on the 24. day of February, in the yeare 1307. his Queene and he were both Crowned at Westminster, by the hands of Henry Bishop of Winchester, by Commission from Robert Arch-bishop of Canterbury, being then in Exile, and out of the kingdome: At which solemnity there was so great a presse of People, that Sir Iohn Blackwell knight was crowded to death. And now in the very Act of his Coronation, there was given another provocation to the Lords against Gaveston: for the King had appointed him to carry the Crowne of Saint Edward before him, (the greatest honour could be done to a Subject) which ad∣ded to the other honours the King had done him, (for he had made him Earle of Cornewall, Lord of Man, and Lord Chamberlaine) so incensed the Lords, that they entred into consultation, how to suppresse this violence of the Kings affecti∣on; which shortly after they put in execution. Portion in money King Edward had none with his Wife: but the King of France gave him the Dutchy of Guyenne, which he had seised upon before, as confiscate to him: and thereupon King Ed∣ward did him Homage for that Dutchy, and for the County of Ponthieu.

Of his difference with his Lords about Gaveston.

VVE shall have here no Quinquennium Neronis, no such five yeares, as Nero afforded in the beginning of his Raigne; but this King at his first en∣trance will shew what he is, and what he will continue to be as long as he lives; for though he tooke some great and grave men to be of his Councell, yet (as ap∣peared afterward) he did it rather to the end they should be pliant to him, then that he had any meaning to apply himselfe to them; For let them say what they would, Gaveston must be the Oracle; all the Kings actions were but Gavestons im∣pressions: And now Gaveston presently after the Coronation, to let the world be a witnesse of his worthinesse, and that the King had not bestowed his Favours up∣on him without cause; caused to be published a Turneament at Wallingford: whither came all the great Lords of the kingdome, as Thomas Earle of Lancaster, Humfrey Earle of Hereford, Aymer Earle of Pembroke, and Iohn Earle of Warren, with many others, all Valiant men at Armes; yet none had the honour of the day like to Gave∣ston. And thus farre he did well, if he could have stayed here, if having gotten true glory, he had not falne into vaine-glory: For the Lords envyed him not so much for his advancement in Honours, as they hated him for his insolency in Manners: for in a scornefull pride he would be casting scoffes upon them all, cal∣ling Thomas Earle of Lancaster the Stage Player, the Earle of Lincolne Bursten∣belly; Page  143imer de Valence Earle of Pembroke, Ioseph the Iew; and Guy Earle of War∣wicke, the blacke Dogge of Arderne; which scoffes together with his other inso∣lencies, drew such a party upon him, that in the next Parliament, the whole assem∣bly obtaines of the King to draw Articles of their grievances: of which the chiefe were, that the great Charter of Magna Charta should be observed that all stran∣gers should be banished the Court and kingdome; that the businesse of the State should be treated of by the Counsell of the Clergy and the Nobles; and that the King should not begin any warre, nor goe out of the kingdome without consent of Parliament. Which Articles, though seeming harsh to the King, yet for avoy∣ding of further inconvenience, he yeelds unto them; and specially to the banih∣ment of his Minion Gaveston, as hoping that would excuse him for all the rest; and Robert of Winchelsey, Arch-bishop of Canterbury, lately called home from Exile, pronounceth Excommunication against all such as should oppose the Articles. Hereupon Gaveston is sent away into Ireland, where he lived awhile, not as a banisht man, but as Lieutenant rather of the Country, and indeed not unworthily; for in the time of his being there, he is said to have made a Journey into the Moun∣taines of Dublin, and to have broken and subdued the Rebels there; built New Ca∣stle in the Kerns Country, repaired the Castle of Kevyn, and passed up to Munster, and Thoumond: performing every where much service with great valour and wor∣thinesse, that if he had stayed there but a while longer, he might perhaps by his desorts in Ireland, have redeemed his defects in England: but the King impatient of his absence, and asking advice what meanes might be used to recall him; It was told him, that if he could but match him with the Earle of Glocesters sister, a man of such greatnesse, and so greatly beloved of the people, for his sake certaine∣ly no man would grudge at his comming home. Hereupon the King sends for Gaveston, and makes up the match betweene them, and marryed they were at Bar∣kamstead; but this did no good. For Gaveston still working upon the King in such manner, that he scarce left him meanes to sustaine himselfe, and as little to main∣taine the Queene; nothing being done but as Gaveston would have it; put the Lords into a new discontentment; who thereupon went againe to the King, and told him plainly, that unlesse he would put Gaveston out of the Court and kingdome, they would rise up in Armes against him as a perjured King. This put the King into a great strait: Loath he was to leave Gaveston, and fearefull he was to provoke the Lords; in the end, his feare prevailing over his love, he was content he should be Banished, and in such sort Banished, that if ever he returned, or were found in the kingdome, he should be held, and proceeded against as an Enemy of the State. So once againe is Gaveston sent packing out of the kingdome, and goes into France, but found no safe Harbouring there: For the King of France hearing of it, gave strait charge, if he were found in his Dominions to apprehend him: Then he pas∣seth into Flanders, but is there no saer then in France: After waving about, and finding no place to rest in safety, he returnes secretly into England, relying upon the Kings Love, and the Duke of Glocesters Favour. The King receives him as an Angell sent from Heaven, and to be out of the Lords Eye, goes a Journey to Yorke, taking Gaveston along with him, and there thinkes to be in quiet; but the Lords hearing of it follow him thither, chusing for their Generall, Thomas Earle of Lancaster, a man possest of five Earledomes, Lancaster, Leycester, Ferrers, Lin∣colne, and Salisbury, besides the Liberty of Pickering, and the Honour of Coker∣more, and other Lands in Wales; and there was not a man of the whole Nobility that was not of the Party, but onely Gilbert Earle of Glocester, the Kings Sisters Sonne; These Lords sent to the King, either to deliver Gaveston into their hands, or at least to send him peremptorily out of the kingdome. But the King led by ill Counsell, and little regarding the Lords Message, takes Gaveston with him to New-Castle upon Tine, thence to Tynmouth, where the Queene then lay, who (though great with Childe, and entreating the King with teares to stay with her) yet such was his desire to see Gaveston put into some place of security, that hearing of the Lords approaching, he tooke a Ship, and passed with Gaveston to Scarborough, and Page  144 leaving him there in a strong Castle, not easie to be wonne, he went himselfe into Warwickshire; perhaps that the Lords might see he had not Gaveston with him. But the Lords hearing where Gaveston was, assaulted the Castle with such violence, that Gaveston seeing no meanes to escape, was content to render himselfe; requesting onely, that he might but once be allowed to see the Kings face; and the King hea∣ring he was taken, desired as much: to which the Earle of Pembroke consented; and taking Gaveston into his custody, promised upon Forteiture of all he had, to have him forth-comming: but desiring to be with his Wife that night, who lay not farre off, at Dedington h delivers him to his Servants to carry to Wallingford; From whom, as they passed by Warwicke, the Earle of that place hearing of it, tooke him forcibly from his keepers, and brought him to his owne Castle. Where after long deliberation, whether it were wisedome to suffer Gaveston to speake with the King or no; It was at last concluded to take of his head; which at a place there∣by, called Blacklow, was presently put in execution. His Corps was carryed to Oxford, and kept there two yeares, till the King caused it to be brought to Long∣ley, and there builded a Monastery of purpose, where his Soule should be prayed for.

This Gaveston was the Sonne of a Gentleman of France, who had done good ser∣vice for King Edward the first, in France; and for his sake this Sonne of his was taken and brought up with the Prince: a man of excellent parts of body, and of no lesse Endowments of minde; Valiant and Witty; to which if we might adde Ver∣tuous, he had beene compleate; Though the Lords (whether they had heard so, or whether they said it to weane the King from him) told the King that his Father was a Traitor to the King of France, and for the same was executed; and that his Mother was burnt for a Witch; and that this Gaveston was banished out of France for consenting to his Mothers Witch-craft; and that he had now bewitched the King himselfe. But why should the Lords be so violent against Gaveston? might not the King place his Affection where he pleased? Might he not make his owne choyce of what companion he liked? No doubt he might; and fit he should: but yet in this case, the Lords had great cause to doe as they did; both in regard of the King, of themselves, and of the Common-wealth. It is true, if the Valour of Gaveston could as well have made the King Valiant, as his riot made him riotous; there might some good have come of their extraordinary conjunction: but seeing Vertues are but personall, Vices onely are communicative; it now made the King not onely more Vicious then otherwise he would have beene, but Vicious, where otherwise he would not have beene; and therefore great cause in regard of the King, to remove Gaveston from his company; and no lesse in regard of the Lords themselves; For Gavestons advancing was their debasing; his greatnesse with the King made them but Cyphers: but in regard of the Common-wealth, most cause of all; For while the King was altogether ruled by Gaveston, and Gaveston him∣selfe was altogether irregular; the Common-wealth could have but little hope of Justice, but was sure to suffer as long as Gaveston was suffered. And this may be sufficient to justifie the Lords, that it be not interpreted to be Rebellion, which was indeed but Providence.

Of his Troubles with Scotland.

ANd now we have seene two of the charges of his Fathers Will broken by the King, and punished in him; the two and thirty thousand pounds appointed for the Holy Warre, bestowed upon Gaveston, and the King for it punished him∣selfe with want; Gaveston called home from banishment, and the King for it pu∣nished with the losse of his Subjects love. It remaines to see how well he performed the third charge of his Fathers Will, for subduing of Scotland. It was now the sixth yeare after the death of his Father King Edward, and Robert Bruce now gotten to be King of Scotland, had stayed all this while to see how this new King Edward would prove: and when he found by the courses he held, that he was like to Page  145 prove a good easie Enemy; he thereupon tooke heart, and began to stirre, and in a very short time had brought almost all Scotland under his obedience; and finding no opposition he entred the English Borders, tooke and burnt Townes; that now King Edward, unlesse he would sit still, and suffer Bruce to come and pull his Crown from his head, he could not chuse but doe something to stop his proceeding. Here∣upon he prepares an Army, but like himselfe, fitter for a Court then for a Campe: Many men, and great Bravery; but readie to take spoiles, then to make spoile: and accordingly they sped; For going to raise the siege at Strveling, defended for King Edward, by the valiant knight Philip Mowbray; the Kings Army consist∣ing of a hundred thousand, was defeated and overthrowne by the Scots Army, con∣sisting of scarce thirty thousand: So true is that saying of an ancient Souldier; There is more hope of an Army where the General is a Lion, though the Souldiers be but Sheepe; then of an Army where the Generall is a Sheepe, though the Souldi∣ers be Lions. But indeed the Scots, besides Valour, used Policy: For having in their owne Army none but Foot, no Horse at all, they had made Trenches in the Ground three foot deepe, covering them with Twigges and Hurdles, where the English Horsemen were to passe, who Floundring in those Trenches, were killed no lesse by their owne Fellowes then by the Enemy. In this Battell, called of Ban∣nocks borough, were slaine the Lord Mawle, the Lord Clifford, the Lord Tiptoft, the Lord William Marshall, Sir Giles, Doctor Argenton, and seven hundred Knights and Squires, specially Gylbert Earle of Glocester, who had shewed much Valour that day; and whom the Scots would willingly have kept for ransome; if they had knowne him; but he had forgotten to put on his Coate of Armes, whereby to be knowne. The slaughter of common Souldiers was certainely great, though per∣haps not so great as Hector Boetius speakes of, who saith they were fifty thousand. There were taken Prisoners, Humfrey de Bohun Earle of Hereford, Iohn Seagrave, Iohn Claveringham, William Latimer, and Sir Roger Northbrooke, bearer of the Kings shield; the King himselfe with the Bishops, the Earles of Hartford and Pem∣broke, and Hugh Spenser, saved themselves by flight; Humfrey de Bohun Earle of Hereford, was afterward released in exchange for Bruces Wife, who had beene long kept a Prisoner in England. After this, many English fell away to the Scots, and all the North parts from Carlile to Yorke, came under their Subjection; and the English grew so faint-hearted, and into such contempt, that three Scots durst venture upon a hundred English, when a hundred English durst scarce encounter with three Scots. And what can be thought the cause of this great dysaster to this King, but the want of his Fathers blessing for not performing the charge he gave him dying, which is commonly accompanyed with the want of a higher blessing, without which a Vacat is set upon the labours of men, that makes them all frustrate? But Bruce, not satisfied with his Acquests in England, sends his Brother Edward into Ireland also; who so farre prevailed, that many Irish came in unto him, and in the end Crowned him King of a great part of that Island, and so continued the space of three yeares; till the Primat of Armagh, and the Lord Brinningham, Ju∣sticiar of Ireland, gathering Forces together opposed him, and in a Battaile taking him Prisoner, at Dundalke cut off his head, with the slaughter of many thousands of the Scots besides. With which the Scots are so incensed, that they invade a∣gaine the English Borders, forraging as farre as Yorke; whereupon a Parliament is assembled at London, wherein an ayde is granted of Armed men to goe against them; London sets forth two hundred, Canterbury forty, Saint Albons ten, and so proportionably for all Cities and Boroughs, whereby a great Army was levyed; which comming to Yorke, through mutiny, emulation, and other impediments, was soone dissolved, and returned backe without effecting any thing. Not long after the Towne of Berwicke was betrayed to the Scots, through the treason of Peter Spalding the Governour, and other Englishmen; whom the King of Scots to make them an Example, caused to be hanged for being Traitors to their Country. King Edward hearing of the surrendring of Berwicke, raiseth an Army, and beleaguers it; but the Scots to divert his Forces, enter upon England by other wayes, and were Page  146 like to have surprised the person of the Queene, lying then neare orke. The siege of Brwicke is notwithstanding eagerly continued, and the King in great possibili∣ty to have regained the Towne, had not the Earle of Lancaster with his follwers withdrawne himselfe upon discontent, hearing the King say he would give the keeping thereof to Hugh Spen••r the younger, who was now grown a speciall favou∣rite of the Kings, and therefr not to be enured by the Earle. In the mean 〈◊〉 the Scots wonne the Castles of 〈…〉, and Midord; so as they possessed the greater part of all Northmberland, burning all before them, 〈◊〉 they came to •••pon, which Towne they spoyled and carrying there three dayes, they received thousand Markes to save the Towne from burning, as they had done the Townes of Norhallerton, Borugh-bridg and others. In their returning backe, they 〈◊〉Knaresborough, and Shipton in C••ven; and all other afore them, carrying into ••∣land a marvellous number of Cattell, besides prisoners, men and women The••••∣shire men thus grievously endammaged, gather together to the number of ten thou∣sand: and at the Towne of Mitton, tenne miles from Yorke, encounter the Sco•• where they lost three thousand of their men, and were defeated which bttell, be∣cause of the many Spirituall men that were in it, was called the white battell. Whereof when the King heard he left the siege of Bewicke, to follow the Scots, but they returned another way. The yeare following, King Edward once againe with a great Army entred Scotland; but the Scots having destroyed all afore, the King oppressed with famine was forced to reurne whom the Scots followed, and in a place of the Forest of Blackmore, se upon him that he hardly escaped; where were taken Iohn Earle of Britaine, and the Lord of Silac, the French Kings Em∣bassadour, and many others. After this, King Edward finding the Scots either too strong, or too wily for him, made a Truce with them for two yeares, some say for thirteene. And this was the successe of this unfortunate King in his warres with Scotland.

Of his tr••bles at home.

BUt his troubles abroad were not so grievous as those at home; or rather, they were those at home that made his troubles abroad so grievous; for though the Lords having made an end of Gaveston, and cut off his head, thought they had made an end of their need to beare Armes, and had cut off the head of all their discontents; yet as if Gaveston had beene a Phoenix, as it were out of his ashes an∣other Phoenix riseth presently up, and puts the Lords to as much trouble as ever Gaveston did. For now the younger Spenser upon a sudden growes as great a Favorite of the Kings as ever Gaveston was: and indeed in all points just such another, equall to him in goodlinesse of personage, in favour of the King, and in abusing the Lords, for though they were the Lords themselves that brought him at first in to be the Kings Chamberlaine, the rather (as was thought) because he was one whom the King did not love: yet being once in the place, he so wonne upon the King by dili∣gent service, and by complying with the Kings humour; that he brought the King at last to comply with his humour, and nothing must be done but as Spenser would have it. It seemes it was the Kings nature, that he could not be without a bosome friend; one or other to be an Alter idem: and to seeke to remove such a one from him, was to seek to remove him from him selfe as impossible a thing as to alter na∣ture; yet the Lords being more sensible of their owne grievance, to be insulted on by a Favourite, then of the Kings grievance to be affronted by his subjects, are more intentive to worke their owne ends then the Kings: and therefore to remove Spen∣ser and his Father from the King, which they knew was a worke not to be done but by strong hand; they continue their Armes, and confderting together, they send to the King, peremptorily requiring the confirmation and execution of the Articles formerly granted; threatning withall, that unlesse he presently performe the same, they would constraine him to it by force of Armes: and thereupon assemble strong forces about Dunstable, where the King hen lay. The great Prelates of the king∣dome, Page  147 with the Earle of Glocester, labour to appease them, and with two Cardinals sent lately by the Pope to reforme these disorders: they repaire to Saint Albns, and desire conference with the Lords, who receive them very peaceably; but the Let∣ters which the Pope had written to them, they refuse to receive, saying, they were men of the Sword, and cared not for reading of Letters; that there were many wrthy and learned men in the kingdome, whose counsell they would use, and not strangers, who knew not the cause of their commotion: so the Cardinals with this answer returned to London. But the Prelates of Englando labour the businesse, that the Lords were content to yeeld up to the King such horses, treasure, and jewels, as they had taken of Pierce Gaveston at New-Castle, so as the King would grant their Petitions; and thereupon Iohn Sandall Treasurer of the kingdome, and Ingelard Warle keeper of the Wardrobe, are sent to Saint Albons to receive those things at their hands.

Shortly after a Parliament is called at London, wherein the King complaines of the great contempt was had of him by the Barons, their rising in Armes, their ta∣king and murthering Pierce Gaveston, and such other affronts. Whereunto with one accord they answer, that they had not offended therein, but rather merited his love and favour; having taken Armes, not for any contempt of his royall person, but to destroy the publike enemy of the kingdome, which otherwise would never have beene done. Which stout resolution of theirs, the Queene with the Prelates and the Earle of Glocester seeing, they seeke by all meanes to qualifie their heate; and at length so prevailed with them, that they humble themselves to the King, and crave pardon for that they had done, which they obtained; and the King receives them into grace, as his loyall subjects: grants them their Articles and particular pardons by his Charter, for their Indemnity concerning the death of Gaveston: and for the greater shew of true reconcilement, Guy de Beauchamp Earle of Warwicke, is made of the Kings Counsell, though shortly after he ended his life, not without suspition of poyson; as being a man much envied by such as possest the King. The King kept his Christmas at Clipston, and his Easter at Clarendon: and they seemed to be all good friends, but this reconcilement of the King with his Barons, was but as the covering of fire with ashes, every little wind that blew, made it breake out into flames afresh; & the time being so unsetled as it was, it was impossible but such winds would continually be blowing. It was such a wind blew, when the great Earle of Lancaster had his wife (a Lady who had lived with him alwayes in good fame) taken out of his house at Canford in Dorsetshire by one Richard Saint Martin a deformed lame Dwarfe, who challenged her to be his wife, and that he had lien with her before the Earle married her and this wind was made to blow the stronger, by the Ladies owne confession; for upon examination, she voluntarily averred, it was all true: and thereupon the ogly fellow in her right claimed the two Earledomes of Lincolne and Slisbury, which he durst not have done if he had not beene back'd with great Abettours: and it was not without aspersion upon the King himselfe. It was another such wind blew, when at the Feast of Pentecost, at dinner in the open Hall at Westminster; a woman fantastically disguised, entred on horsebacke, and riding about the Table, delivered the King a Letter, wherein was signified the great neg∣lect he shewed of such as had done him and his Father noble services, taxing him for advancing men of unworthy parts, and such other complaints; which Letter read, and the woman departed, put the King into a great rage; they who guarded the doore being sharply reprehended for suffering her to enter in such manner, answe∣red, It was the fashion of the Kings house in times of Festivals, to keepe out none that came as this woman did, to make sport. Search being made for the woman, she is found and examined who set her on; she confessed a knight gave her money to doe it; the knight is found, and upon examination, boldly answered, he did it for the Kings honour, and to no other end; and thereupon escaped without further trouble. It was such another wind blew, when a knight was taken passing by Pom∣fret, with Letters sealed with the Kings Seale, directed to the King of Scots, about murthering the Earle of Lancaster; which messenger is executed, his head set upon Page  148 the top of the Castle, and the Letters reserved to witnesse the intended plot. Which whether it were fained, or true, the report thereof reflected upon the King, and made many to take the Earles part. It was such another wind blew, when a fana∣tick fellow, one Iohn P••dras, a Tanners sonne of Exeter, gave forth, that himselfe was th tre Edward, eldest sonne of the late King Edward the first, and by a false Nurse was changed in his Cradle, and that the now King Edward was a Carters son, and laid in his place: but this wind was soone blowne over, when at his death, be∣ing drawne and hanged, he confessed he had a Familiar Spirit in his house in the like∣nesse of a Cat, that assured him he should be King of England, and that he had ser∣ved the said Spirit three yeares before to bring his purpose about. But most of all, it was such a wind blew, when a Baron named William Brewis, having wasted his estate, offers to sell unto divers men, a part of his inheritance called Powis. Humphrey 〈◊〉 Earle of Hereford, obtaines leave of the King to buy it, & bargains for it. The two Ro∣ger Mrtimers, Unkle and Nephew, great men likewise in those parts, not understan∣ding, it seemes, any thing of the former bargaine, contract also for the same Land with the said Sir William Brewis. Hugh Spenser the younger, hearing of this sale, and the land adjoyning to part of his, obtaines a more speciall leave of the King, being now his Chamberlaine, and buyes it out of their hands. The Earle of Her∣ford complaines hereof to the Earle of Lancaster: who thereupon at Sherbourne en∣ters into a new confederation with divers Barons there assembled, taking their Oaths intermutually, to live and die together in maintaining the right of the king∣dome; and to procure the banishment of the two Spensr, father and sonne, whom they now held to be the great seducers of the King, and oppressours of the State, disposing of all things in Court at their pleasure, and suffering nothing to be obtained but by their meanes: and under this pretence they take Armes, and comming ar∣med to Saint Albons, they send to the King, being then at London, the Bishops of London, Salisbury, Hereford, and Chichester, (who were there assembled to consul for peace) requiring him as he tendred the quet of the Realme, to rid his Court of those Traitours, the Spensers, condemned in many Articles of high treason by the communalty of th Land; and withall to grant his Letters Patents of pardon and indemnity both to them and all such as tooke part with them. The King returnes answer, that Hugh Spenser the father was now beyond the Seas, imployed in his businesse, and his sonne was guarding the Cinque-ports according to his office; and that it was against Law of Custome they should be banished without being heard: and withall swore, he would never violate the Oath made at his Coronation, by granting Letters of pardon to such notorious offenders, who contemned his per∣son, disturbed the kingdome, and violated the royall Majesty. Which answer so exasperated the Lords, that presently they approached to London, and lodged in the Suburbs, till they had leave of the King to enter into the City, where they perem∣ptorily urge their demands: to which at length by mediation of the Queene, and the chiefe Prelates, the King is wrought to condescend, nd by his Edict, published in Westminster Hall, by the Earle of Hereford, the Spensers are banished the king∣dome. Hugh the father hearing it, keepes beyond the Seas, but the sonne secretly hides himselfe in England, expecting the turne of a better season. And indeed shortly after, the Arch-bishop of Canterbury in a Councell holden at London, pronoun∣ceth the banishment of the Spensers to have beene erronious; and thereupon the E∣dict is revoked, and the Spensers are called home, and se in as great authority as they were before. But the Lords having thus obtained their desire, with the Kings Letters of indemnity returne home, but yet not with such security as to give over the provision for their owne defence. Not long after there fell ou an unexpected accident, that suddenly wrought the Lords confusion. The Queene making her progresse towards Canterbury, intended to lodge in the Castle of Leedes, belonging to the Lord Badlesmer, (who had beene long the Kings Steward, but now tooke part with the Lords) and sending her Marshall to make ready for her and her traine; they who kept the Castle told him plainely, that neither the Queene, nor any else should enter there without Letters from their Lord. The Queene her selfe goes to Page  149 the Castle, and receives the like answer; whereupon she is driven to take such lodging otherwhere as could be provided. Of which indignity she complaines to the King; who tooke it so to heart, that presently with a power of armed men out of London, he laies siege to the Castle, takes it, hangs the keeper Thomas C••epepper, sends the wife and children of the Lord Badlesmer to the Tower, and seiseth upon all his goods and treasure. And having this power about him, and warmed with successe and the instigation of the Queene, suddenly directs his course to Chihester, where he keepes his Christmas, and there provides for an Army against the Ba∣rons: whereof many (seeing the Kings power encreasing) lef their Associats, and yeeld themselves to his mercie: amongst whom were the two Roger Mori••rs, men of great might and meanes; the Lord Hugh Audely, the Lord M••rice Barkely, and others: who notwithstanding, contrary to their expectation, were sent to di∣vers Prisons. The Earles of Lancaster and Hereford seeing this sudden change, with∣drew themselves and their companies from about Glocester, towards the North-parts: whom the King followes with his Army; wherin were the Earles of Athll & Angus; and at Burton upon Trent, where they had made a head, discomfited their forces, and put them to flight. In the meane time the Earle of Lancaster had sent into Lanca∣shire a knight of his, named Robert Holland, (one whom he had brought up of naught) to raise more forces amongst his Tenants; but he hearing of this flight of his Lords, goes with his forces to take the Kings part; which so dismaies the Earle, that he beganne now to thinke of suing to the King for grace; but being in the way, at a Towne called Borough-bridge, was there set upon by Sir Simon Warde Sheriffe of Yorke, and Sir Andrew Harkeley Constable of Carlile, who utterly de∣feat his forces: In which fight was slaine the Earle of Hereford, (who fighting va∣liantly upon a Bridge, was by a Varlet skulking under the Bridge, thrust with a Speare into the fundament) Sir Roger Benefield, Sir William Sulland and others; there was taken the Earle of Lancaster, Sir Roger Clifford, Sir Iohn Mwbray, Sir Roger Tuckets, Sir William Fits-Williams, with divers other, and were led to Yorke. This field was fought the fifteenth day of March, in the yeare 1320. It was not long f∣ter that Sir Hugh Daniell, Sir Bartholomew de Baddelsmer were taken. Three dayes after the Earle of Lancaster is brought to Pomfret, where the King sitting himselfe in judgement with Edmund Earle of Kent his brother, the Earle of Pem•••ke, the Earle Warren, Hugh Spencer, lately created Earle of Winchester, and others; sentence of death is given against him, to be drawne, hanged, and beheaded as a Traitor. The two first punishments are pardoned, in regard he was of Royall bloud: onely be∣headed he was the same day without the Towne of Pomfret, before his owne Ca∣stle. To speake of the Miracles said to be done by him after his death, might be fit for a Legend, but not for a Chronicle, and therefore I omit them. By the like judgement were condemned, the Lord Roger Clifford the Lord Warren Lisle, the Lord William Tuchet, Thomas Maudit, Henry Bradburne, Willim Fits-Williams, Willi∣am Lord Cheyney, Thomas Lord Mwbray, Ioceline Lord Danill, all which were exe∣cuted at Yorke. Shortly after, the Lord Henry Teyes is taken, drawne, hanged, and quarterd at London; the Lord Aldenham at Windsor; the Lords Baddlesmere and Ash∣burton at Canterbury: at Cardiffe in Wales, Sir William Flemming; at Bristow, SiHenry Womington; and Sir Henry Montford Bannerets; at Glocester, the Lord Clifford and Sir William Elminbridge, principall men in principall places, to spread the more e∣rour over the kingdome: all their estates and inheritances are confiscated, and ••ny new men advanced by the same. And this is the first bloud of Nobility that ever was shed in this manner in England since William the Conquerour.

But not long after, the King in a calmer humour, beganne to have a sense o the Earle of Lancasters execution, which he discovered upon this occasion: some bou him making earnest suite for a Pardon to one of the Earles followers; and pre•••ng the King hard to it, he fell into a great pssion, excliming ginst them as unjus and wicked Counsellours, who would urge him to save the life of a notorious V••∣let, and would not speake one word for his neare kinsman, the Earle of Lancaste: who (said he had) he lived, might have beene useull to me, and the whole king∣dome; Page  150 but this fellow the longer he lives, the more mischiefe he will doe, and therefore by the soule of God, he should die the death he had deserved. Sir Andrew Harkeley, who was the man that tooke the Earle of Lancaster prisoner, being advan∣ced for his service to the Earledome of Carlile, enjoyed his honour but a while; for the next yeare after, either thrust out into discontent by the Spensers, envying his high preferment, or combining with the Scots, upon hope of a great match, (as he was accused) he is degraded of all his honours; drawne, hanged, and quartered at Londn for Treason. But now the King of France summons King Edward to come and doe his homage for Gascoyne; and he not comming, all his Territories in France are adjudged to be forfeited, and many places of importance are seied on by the French. Hereupon a Parliament is called, and it is by common consent of all a∣greed, that the King should not goe in person himselfe, in regard of the distraction of the times, but should send some speciall man to excuse his appearance; where∣upon Edmund Earle of Kent the Kings brother is sent, but to little effect. Then it is thought fit the Queene should goe, and indeed the Queene went; but what was the cause of her going, there is amongst Writers great variance: some say she was sent by the King to accommodate this businesse, which she negotiated so well, as that all quarrels were ended, upon condition the King should give to his sonne Edward, the Dutchie of Aquitaine, with the Earledome of Ponthieu, and send him over to doe his homage for them; which after many consultations the King is wrought to yeeld unto; and the Prince is sent with the Bishop of Exeter and o∣thers to the Court of France accordingly: but others say she went out of discon∣tent, to complaine to her brother the King of France, for wrongs offered her by the Spensers, who had so alienated the Kings minde from her, that he would scarce come where she was, nor allow her fit maintenance for her calling. But whatso∣ever was the cause of her going there appeared no cause of her staying, but that she had gotten into her company, Roger Mortimer Lord of Wigmre, a gallant young Gentleman whom she specially favoured, lately escaped out of the Tower of Lon∣don, by giving his keepers (as was said) a sleeping drinke. And withall, the Bishop of Exeter perceiving some plots to be in hand, and their close consultations made without him, withdrawes himselfe secretly, and discovers to the King what he ob∣served in their courses. Whereupon the King sends presently for the Qu and Prince, and solicits the King of France to hasten their return; which when he saw was negle∣cted and delaied, he caused them openly to be proclaimed enemies to the king∣dome, banished them and all their adherents out of the Land: and withall causeth all the Ports to be strongly kept; and sends three Admirals to attend in severall Coasts to hinder their landing. It was not without suspition, that as the King for love of the Spensers, had his minde alienated from loving the Queen; so the Queen for love of Mrtimer, had her minde alienated from loving the King, and therefore having him with her, cred not how long she staied. However it was, when the Queene heard of the Kings Proclamation, she knew there was no returning for her into England without some good assistance: whereupon soliciting her brother the King of France, he aided her with men and money (say some: but others, that he refusing to aide her, as being wrought under hand by the Spensers against her; she left the French Court, and went into Heynault, to the Earle of that Countrey, who upon a contract betweene her sonne Prince Edward and Philippa the Earles daugh∣terided her with a competent Army, under the conduct of his brotheIohn: and with them and her beloved Mortimer, she tooke shipping and landed at Orwell, a Port neare unto Harwich in Suffolke: where presently came to her the Earle Mar∣shall, Henry Earle of Leycester, and Henry Earle of Lancaster with the wry neck, cal∣led Trtcll, with many other Lords and Bishops. The King at this time being at London, and hearing of the Queenes landing with such forces, and chiefely how all the Realme ranne flocking to her, was uddenly strucken into a great amazement; and though he had his great Counsellours the Spensers about him, yet now he found what little good thir counsel could do him: and indeed in this case, what should he, or what could he do? To stay in London was apparent danger, for he plainely saw the Page  151Londners to be more inclining to take the Queenes part then his; and to goe from London to any other place was as unsafe, all places being possest eithe with certaine Enemies or uncertaine Friends at last the Isle of Lundy is thought of, a place plen∣tifull of provision abounding with Conies, Fish and Fowle, and the Island of hard accesse, as having but one place in it where it could be entred, and that so narrow, that a few might easily keepe out many; upon this place he resolves and taking with him the Earle of Glocester, the Spensers, and Robert aldcke, with some fe others, he akes shipping, but by contrary windes is driven backe, and raine through Tempests to land in Wales, and there in the Abbey of Neth in 〈◊〉 kept himselfe close. In the meane time the Queene was come to Oxford where Adm Bishop of Hereford Preaching tooke for his Text, Caput meum dol••, and thereupon inferred, that the kingdome being now deadly sicke of its head, it was fit to remove that head, and put a sounder in the place. At this time also, thL••dners to shew their love to the Queene, seised upon Walter Stapletn the good Bishop of Exceter and Lord Treasurer of England, left Governor the•• by the King, and with great despight beheaded him, as also divers others, onely because they favoured the King. In the meane time, the Queene went from Oxford to Glocester, and from thence to Bristow, where Hugh Spncer the Father was, a man of fouescore and ten yeares old, who is there taken, and without examination or Judgement, in most cruell manner Executed, having his heart pulled out of his bo∣dy being yet alive, and his body left hanging upon the Gallowes. After this the Queene stayed at Hreford the space of a moneth and then dividing her Army, she sends one part of it, under the Conduct of Henry Earle of Lancaster, and Ryce a Powell a Clerke, o find out the King: and this Ryce being a Welshan, and know∣ing th Country well, brought the Earle to the Monastery of Nth where the King was, whom they there take together with Spenser the Sonne, Rober Baldcke, and Simon of Reading. The King is by the Bishop of Hereford committed to the custo∣dy of the Earle of Leycester: where all that Winter he was used no worse then was fit for a captive King. But Edmund Earle of Arundell, Iohn Daniel, and Thm•• Micheldens, at the instance of Mortimer, are all three beheaded. Presently after is Hugh Spenser the younger, who was now Earle of Glocester, drawne, hanged and quareed, his head sent up to be set upon London Bridge, and his foure quarters bestowed in severall Cities. The like is done with Simon of Reading, but Robert Baldocke is committed to New-Gate, against whom, when no just cause of death could be found, there was used so much cruelty in his imprisonment, that he short∣ly after dyed.

Presently after Christmas a Parliament is called, wherein it is agreed to depose the King, and set up his Sonne; which he hearing refused it, unlesse his Father would freely resigne; whereupon are appointed three Bishops, two Earles, two Abbots, foure Barons, and of every City a Burgesse, to goe to the King; (in cu∣stody then at Kenelworth) The Bishops were, Iohn of Sratford Bishop of Winche∣ster, Adam Torleton Bishop of Hereford, and Henry Bishop of Lincolne. But the Bi∣shops of Winchester and Lincolne, getting to the King before the rest came, perswade the King to resigne his Crowne to his eldest Sonne; cratily promising him he should have as good maintenance afterward, as ever he had when he was King. And contrarily threatning him, that if he did it not, the people would exclude both him and his Sonne too, and mke a King of another Race. By these promi∣ses and threatnings, the meeke King is drawne to yeeld to the Bishops mo••on; but when afterward the Bishop of Hereford, and the other Commissioners came, and were sate in a place appointed to take his Resignation, the King comming forth amongst them in mourning Robes, upon a sudden fell downe in a swound in whom the Earle of Leycester, and the Bishop of Winchester, had much ado to reco∣ver life; but then the Bishop of Hereford rising up, delivered the cause of their comming, as the other Bishops before had done. To which he King answered, that as he much grieved his People should be so hardned against him as utterly to reject him; so it was some comfort unto him, that they would yet receive his Son Page  152 to be their Soveraigne. After this, Thomas Blunt knight, Steward of the Kings house, brake the Staffe of his Office; and William Trssell Speaker of the Parli∣ment, in name of the whole kingdome, pronounced a Forme of Renouncing all Allegeance to Edward of Carnarvan. Here Caxton writes, that from the time of this Kings Deposing, which was in December, to the time of his Sonnes Crowning, which was not till Candlemas following, all Pleas of the Kings Bench were stayed, and all Prisoners, arrested by Sheriffes, commanded to be set at liberty; which seemes to have little probability, seeing his Sonne Edward presently upon his De∣posing was received for King: But howsoever so great a Dowre was then assigned to Queene Isabel, that scarce a third part of the Revenues of the Crowne is let for the new King and his Wife: And to the late King is allowed a hundred Markes moneth for his maintenance; with which he lived with his Cousin the Earle of Leycester, in good plenty and contentment for a time; onely this grieved hm most of all (he said) that the Queene his Wife would never be gotten to come to see him: For he swore most devoutly that from the time he first saw her face, he could never like of any other Woman. By which it may appeare, that neither Gaveston no the Spensers had so debauched him, as to make him false to his bed, or to be disloy∣all to his Queene. But the Queene being hardned against him, and conceiving he had too great Liberty under the Earle of Leycester, by advise of her pestilent Coun∣sellour, Adam Torleton Bishop of Hereford, appoints Thomas Gorney, and Io•• Matrevers knights, to take him from the Earle into their owne Custody, and to carry him whither they thought good; who thereupon take him from Kenelwrth, and carry him first to Corfe Castle, and from thence to Bristow, where they shut him in the Castle; till upon knowledge of a Plot laid to get him out, and send him beyond Sea, they tooke him in the night and carryed him to Brkeley Castle, where by the way they abused him most inhumanely, as Sir Thomas de la More a knight of Glocestershire in his Life relateth: For to the end he should not be knowne, they shaved his Head and Beard, and that in most beastly manner; for they took him from his Horse and set him upon a Hillocke, and then taking puddle water out of a Ditch thereby, they went to wash him, his Barber telling him that cold water must serve for this time: whereat the miserable King looking sternely upon him, said, That whether they would or no, he would have warme water to wash him: and therewithall to make good his word, he presently shed forth a showre of teares. Never was King turned ou of a kingdome in such a manner; Many king∣domes have beene lost by the chance of Warre, but this kingdome was lost before any Dice were cast; no blow strucke, no Battell fought; done forcibly, and yet without force; violently, and yet with consent; both parties agreed, yet nei∣ther pleased; for the King was not pleased to leave his kingdome, and the Queene was not pleased to leave him his life; it was not safe to leave him a part, by which he might afterward recover the whole; and therefore this was the marke now aimed at, having taken away his kingdome openly, how they might take away his life secretly; be the Authours of it, and not be seene in it; but this must be the Contents of a Chapter hereafter.

Of his Taxations.

BY this King it appeares, there is something else besides the grievance of Taxa∣tions, that alienates the mindes of English Subjects from their King; for never were fewer Taxations then in this Kings time, yet never were the Subjects minds more alienated from their King, then they were from him. Before his Coronati∣on, in a Parliament holde at Westminster,••ere was granted him a fifteenth of the Clergy, and a twentieth of the Temporalty. In his fifth yeare in a Parliament at L••don, was granted him a fifteenth of the Temporalty. In his fifteenth yeare was granted the sixth peny of temporall mens Goods, through England, Ireland, and Wales, towards his Warre with Scotland. And more then these we reade not of: but then at the defeate of the Earle of Lancaster, there were Confiscations that sup∣plyed Page  153 the place of Taxations, by which (as one saith) he became the richest King that had beene since the Conquest.

Of his Lawes and Ordinances.

HE Ordained that the moneyes of his Father, though counted base by the Peo∣ple, should be currant. In the eight yeare of his Raigne, by reason of a dearh which raised the price of all Victuals, it was Ordained by Parliament, that an Oxe fatted with grasse, should be sold for fifteene shillings; fatted with Corne, for twen∣ty; the best Cow for twelve shillings; a fat Hogge of two yeares old, three shl∣lings foure pence; a fat Sheepe shorne, foureteene pence, with the Fleece, twenty pence; a fat Goose for two pence halfe-penny; a fat Capon two pence; a fat Hen a penny; foure Pigeons a penny; whosoever sold for more, should forfait their Ware to the King. But after these Rates imposed, all kinde of Victuals grew so scarce, that provision could hardly be made for the Kings house; where∣upon shortly after, the Order was revoked, and Market Folkes permitted to make the best of their Wares. In this Kings time an Ordinance was made against knights Templars, accused of Heresie and other crimes, and they were all apprehended, and committed to divers Prisons. The like was done by all the Kings of Chri∣stendome, at one instant, being condemned in a Generall Counsell at Vienna. In the 14. yeare of his Raigne, on the 15. of October, the Clerkes of the Exchequer went towards Yorke with the Booke called Domus Dei, and other Records and Pro∣vision that laded one and twenty Carts, but within halfe a yeare they were brought backe againe.

Affaires of the Church in his time.

IN the 17. yeare of his Raign the Bishop of Hereford was arrested accused of High Treason, for aiding the Kings enemies in their late rebellion; but he refued to an∣swer, (being a consecrated Bishop) without leave of the Arch-bishop of Canter∣bury, whose Suffragan he was, (and who he said was his direct Judge, next the Pope) or without the consent of his fellow Bishops: who then all arose, and hum∣bly craved the Kings Clemency in his behalfe; but finding the King implacable, they tooke him away from the Barre, and delivered him to the custody o the Arch-bishop of Canterbury: shortly after, he was againe taken and convented as before, which the Clergy understanding, the Arch-bishops, Canterbury, Yorke, and Dublin, with tenne other Bishops, all with their Crosses erected, went to the place of Judgement, and againe tooke him away with them; charging all men, upon paine of Excommunication, to forbeare to lay violent hands upon him; with which audacious Act, the King was so much displeased, that he presently com∣manded inquiry to be made ex Officio Iudicis, concerning those Objections against the Bishop; wherein he was found guilty, though absent, and had all his Goods and Possessions seised into the Kings hands. In this Kings time the Crowchet Fry∣ers came first into England. In his time, Pope Iohn the two and twentieth, first Instituted the Feast of Corpus Christi; begunne before by Urban the fourth.

Workes of piety done by him, or by others in his time.

THis King founded Oriall Colledge, and Saint Mary Hall in Oxford: He buil∣ded Church of Fryers at his Manour of Langley, where the soule of Gaveston, should b prayed for. In this Kings twentieth yeare, Richard Rothing Sheriffe of London b••lded the Parish Church of Garlickhithe in London. Ralph Baldocke Bishop of London gave two thousand Markes to the building of the new Worke of the Chappell, on the South side of Pauls Church: And left much more by his Testa∣ment.

Page  154


IN the eighth yeare of this Kings Raigne, was so great a dearh, that Horses and Dogges were eaten, and Theeves in prison pluckt in peeces those that were new∣ly brought in amongst them, and eate them halfe alive; which continuing three yeares, brought in the end such a pestilence, that the living scarce sufficed to bury the dead. In the fourth yeare of his Raigne, the Church of Middleton in Dorset∣shire, with all the Monuments, was consumed with Lightning, the Monkes being at Mattins. In this Kings time, digging the Foundation of a worke about Pauls, were found more then a hundred heads of Oxen and kine, which confirmed the o∣pinion, that of old time it had beene the Temple of Iupiter, and that there was the Sacrifice of Beasts.

Of his Wife and Children.

HE marryed Isabel Daughter of Philip the Faire, King of France, she being but twelve yeares of age; who lived his Wife twenty yeares, his Widdow thirty, and dying at threescore and three yeares old, at Rysings neare London, was buried in the midst of the Gray Fryers Quire in London. By her he had issue two Sons and two Daughters: his eldest Sonne named Edward of Windsor, because borne there, succeeded him in the kingdome. His second Sonne named Iohn of Eltham, be∣cause borne there, was at twelve yeares old created Earle of Cornwall: he dyed in Scotland, in the flowre of his Youth, unmarryed. His eldest Daughter Ioane, be∣ing a childe, was marryed in the fourth yeare of King Edward her Brother, to D∣vid Prince of Scotland, Sonne to King Robert Bruce, at seven yeares old, who com∣ming afterward into England to visit her Brother, dyed here, and was buryed at the Gray Fryers in London. His second Daughter Eleanor, was marryed to Reginold the second Earle of Gelder, with a portion of fifteene thousand pounds, and had issue by him two Sonnes, who were Earles successively.

Of his Personage and Conditions.

HE was faire of body, and of great strength, but given much to drinke, which made him oftentimes bewray his owne Secrets; For his other conditions, his greatest fault was, that he loved but one, for if his love had beene divided, it could not have beene so violent. He was extreame in nothing but in loving; and though love moderated, be the best of affections, yet the extremity of it is the worst of pas∣sions. He was rather unfortunate then unhappy; seeing unfortunatenesse is in the Event, unhappinesse in the Cause; and if his fortune had beene to love good men, his owne goodnesse would have made him happy. Two Vertues were eminent in him above all his Predecessours, Continence, and Abstinence: So continent that he left no base issue behind him; So abstinent, that he tooke no base courses for rai∣sing of money. They who despised him being alive, so much honoured him be∣ing dead, that they could have found in their hearts to make him a Saint.

Of his Death and Buriall.

MAny wayes were attempted to take away his life: First, they vexed him in his dyet, allowing him nothing he could well endure to eate, but this succeeded not. Then they lodged him in a chamber over carion and dead carkasses, enough to have poysoned him; and indeed he told a workman at his window, he never en∣dured so great a misery in all his life, but neither did this succeed: Then they at∣tempted it by Poysons, but whether by the strength of his constitution, or by the Divine Providence, neither did this succeed. At last the pestilent Achitphel, the Bishop of Hereford, devised a Letter to his keepers, blaming them for giving him Page  155 too much liberty, and for not doing the service which was expected from them: and in the end of his Letter wrote this line, Edwardum Octidere ••lite timere bonum est: Craftily contriving it in this doubtfull sense, that both the keepers might find sufficient warrant, and himselfe might find sufficient excuse. The keepers guessing at his meaning, tooke it in the worst sense, and accordingly put it in execuion; they tooke him in his bed, and casting heavy bolsters upon him, and pressing them hard downe, stifled him; and not content with that, they heated an iron red hot, and through a pipe thrust it up into his Fondament, that no markes of violence might be seene; but though none were seene, yet some were heard; For when the Fact was in doing, he was heard to roare and cry all the Castle over. Gourney and Ma∣trevers, his murtherers, looking for reward, had the reward of murtherers: For the Queene and Bishop Torleton disavowing the command, threatned to question them for the Kings death: whereupon they fled beyond Sea; and Gourney after three yeares being taken in France, and sent into England, was in the way upon the Sea behead∣ed. Matrevers flying into Germany, had the grace to repent, but lived ever after mi∣serably. Thus dyed this King in the yeare 1327. more then halfe a yeare after his deposing; when he had Raigned almost 19. yeares, lived 43. His body was crry∣ed to Glocester, and there without any Funerall Pompe buryed in the Monastery of Saint Peter, by the Benedictine Fryers.

Of Men of note in his time.

IN this Kings time, of Martiall men were many, whose Acts have beene spoken of in the late Kings life. Of Learned men, also many, as Iohn Duns the great Logician, called Doctor Subtilis, borne in Northumberland, at Emildune a Village three miles distant from Alwike; though both the Scots and the Irish challenge him for theis. Robert Walsingham a Carmelite Fryer, who wrote divers Treatises. Robert Baston borne in Nottingham-shire, a Carmelite Fryer of Scarborough, whom King Edward tooke with him into Scotland, to write some Remembrances of his victories; but being taken by the Scots was constrained by Robert Bruce to write Remembrances of his overthrowes. William Rishanger, a Monke of Saint Albans, an Historiographer; Ralph Baldocke Bishop of London, who wrote a History inti∣tuled Historia Anglica; Iohn Walsingham, a Carmelite Fryer, who wrote divers Trea∣tises; Nicholas de Lyra a Jew by birth, who wrote many excellent Treatises in Di∣vinity; William Ockam a Fryer Minor, who wrote divers Treatises, and namely a∣gainst Iohn Duns, and also against Pope Iohn the 23. in favour of the Emperour Lewis of Bavaria; Thomas Haselwood, a Canon of Leedes in Kent, who wrote a Chro∣nicle, called Chronicon compendiarium; Robert Perscrutator, borne in Yorkeshire, a blacke Fryer and a Philosopher, or rather a Magician; and lastly, though not least worthy to be remembred, Iohn Mandevile, the great Travellour, a Doctor of Physicke, and a Knight.

Page  156


Of his comming to the Crowne, and Acts done in his minority.

EDward of Windsor, eldest sonne of King Edward the second, by Order of Parliament, upon his Fathers Resignation, was pro∣claimed King of England, on the five and twentieth day of Ia∣nuary, in the yeare 1327. and because he had not yet received the Order of knighthood, he was by Henry Earle of Lancaster git solemnly with the Sword; and on the first day of February fol∣lowing, was Crowned at Westminster by Walter Reginolds Arch∣bishop of Canterbury: and thereupon a generall Pardon is Proclaimed, which hath since beene used as a Custome with all the succeeding Kings: that at their first comming to the Crowne, a Generall Pardon is alwayes granted. And because the King was under age, scarce fifteene yeares old (though Froyssard saith he was then Eighteene) there were twelve appointed Governours of him and the kingdome namely the Arch-bishops of Canterbury and Yorke, the Bishops of Winchester, Here∣ford, and Worcester; Thomas of Brotherton, Earle Marshall, Edmund Earle of Kent, the Kings Unkles; Iohn Earle Warren, Thomas Lord Wake, Henry Lord Percie, Oli∣ver Lord Ingham, and Iohn Lord Rosse: but though these were appointed and bore the name, yet the Queen and Roger Mortimer tooke all the authority to themselves. The first action that was undertaken, was an expedition against the Scots; for Ro∣bert Bruce, though now old and sickly, and (as was said) Leprous: yet considering the youth of the new King, and the distractions of the kingdome, thought it now a it time to doe some good upon England: and entring the English borders with an Army, sent defiance to King Edward: whereupon an Army is raised, and the Hey∣nalders (whom the Queen had brought over) are joyned with the English; but a variance falling out betweene the two Nations, made the action not successefull. For the Kings Army encountring the Scots at Stanhope Parke in Weridall in the Bi∣shopricke of Durham, though three times as many as the Scots, as being thirty thou∣sand; yet through this variance, but more through treason of some great men, suffered them all to escape their hands, and the Scots returned home in safety, the English with dishonour: and after this, the English seeing the Heynaulders could doe them no good, sent them away to their owne Countrey. In King Edwards second yeare, his marriage with Philippa of Heynault is solemnised, (a dispensation being first gotten, because of their nearenesse in bloud) and a Parliament is holden at Page  157Northampton, where the King made three Earles: Iohn of Eltham his brother, Earle of Cornwall; Roger Mortimer, Earle of March, and Iames Butler of Ireland, Earle of Ormond: and in this Parliament a dishonourable peace is concluded with the Scots, and confirmed by a match betweene David Bruce Prince of Scotland, being but se∣ven yeares old, and Ioane sister to King Edward, not so old; at which time, by the secret working of Queene Isabell, Roger Mortimer and Sir Iames Dowglasse; the King surrenders by his Charter, all his title of Soveraignty to the Kingdome of Scotland, restores divers Deeds and Instruments of their former Homages and Fe∣alties, with the famous Evidence called Ragmans Roll, and many ancient Jewels and Monuments, amongst which was the blacke Crosse of Scotland; and besides, any English man is prohibited to hold lands in Scotland, unlesse he were a dweller there. In consideration whereof King Bruce was to pay thirty thousand Markes, and to renounce his claime to the Counties of Cumberland and Northumberland, and any other place possessed by him in England. This was no good beginning, and yet worse followed after. For another Parliament being holden at Winchester, Edmund Earle of Kent, the Kings Unkle, is there accused, and condemned upon his con∣fession, for intending to restore his brother, the late King Edward; an intention onely without any fact; yet condemned he was, and brought to the Scaffold, but generally, so beloved of the people, that he stood on the Scaffold from one a clocke till five, before any executioner could be found that would doe the of∣fice, till at last a silly wretch of the Marshalsey was gotten to cut off his head. But the Authors of his death escaped not long themselves, for in the third yeare of the Kings Raigne, another Parliament is holden at Nottingham, wherein the Queen hath all her great Joynture taken from her, and is put to her Pension of a thousand pounds a yeare, and her selfe confined to a Castle, where she remained the rest of her dayes, no fewer then thirty yeares, a time long enough to finde that her being the daughter of a King, the sister of a King, the wife of a King, and the mother of a King, were glorious titles, but all not worth the liberty of a meane estate; and as for Mortimer, (lying then in the Castle of Nottingham) and lately created Earle of the Marches of Wales) he was seised on in this manner; the King taking with him William Montacute, Robert Holland, and others, goe secretly one night by Torch∣light, through a privie way under ground, till they came to the Queenes Chamber, where leaving the King without, they entred, and found the Queene with Mortimer, ready to goe to bed: then laying hands on him, they led him forth, after whom the Queene followed, crying, Bel fits, el fits, ayes pitie du gentil Mortimer; good son good sonne, take pity upon the gentle Mortimer, suspecting that her sonne had beene amongst them: this course was taken to apprehend him for avoyding of tumult, he having no fewer then ninescore knights and Gentlemen, besides other meaner ser∣vants continually about him. But thus seised on, he is committed presently to the Tower, accused of divers great crimes, whereof these were chiefe; that he had pro∣cured the late Kings death; that he had beene the author of the Scots safe escaping at Stanhope Parke, corrupted with the gift of thirty thousand pounds; that he had procured the late marriage and Peace with Scotland, so dishonourable to the King and kingdome; that he had beene too familiar with the Queene, as by whom she was thought to be with child: of which Articles he is found guilty, and condemned; and thereupon is drawne and hanged on the common Gallowes at the Elmes, now called Tiburne, where his body remained two dayes as an opprobrious spectacle for all beholders.

After these businesses in England, there comes a new businesse upon him from the King in France: for about this time Philippe le Bel, King of France, the Queens brother dying without issue, the right of succession to the Crowne is devolved up∣on the Heire to Charles a former King, wherein are competitours Philip Duke de Valois, and Edward King of England; Edward is the nearer in bloud, bu drawes his Pedegree by a Female: Philippe, the further off, but descending by all Males; and because the Law Salique excluding Females, was conceived as well to exclude all descendants by Females, therefore is Philips title preferred before King Edwards,Page  158 and Philip is received and crowned King of France: to which preferment of his, Robert d' Arthois a Peere of great power, gave no small furtherance. And now as soone as Philip was Invested in the Crowne, he summons King Edward to come and doe his Homage for the Dutchy of Guyenne, and his other lands in France, held of that Crowne, according to the custome; which though it were some prejudice to King Edwards claime afterward, yet in regard his kingdome of England was scarce well setled, and himselfe but young, he was contented to doe; and thereupon the sixth of Iune, in the yeare 1329. King Edward in a Crimson Velvet gowne imbroi∣dered with Leopards, with his Crowne on his head, his Sword by his side, and golden Spurres on his heeles; presents himselfe in the body of the Cathedrall Church of Amyens before King Philip, sitting in his Chaire of Estate, in a Velve Gowne of a Violet colour imbroydered with Flowers de lys of Gold, his Crowne on his head, and his Scepter in his hand, with all his Princes and Peeres about him. The Viscount Melun Chamberlaine of France, first commands King Edward to pu off his Crowne, his Sword, and his Spurres, and to kneele downe, which he did, on a Crimson Velvet Cushion before King Philip; and then the Viscount putting both his hands together betweene the hands of the King of France, pronounced the words of the Homage, which were these: You become Liegeman to my Ma∣ster here present, as Duke of Aquitaine and Peere of France, and you promise to beare faith and loyalty unto him; Say yea: and King Edward said yea, and kissed the King of France in the mouth, as Lord of the Fee. The like Homage also he did for the Earldome of Ponthieu. But this act of submission left a rancour in King Edwards heart, which afterwards brake so out, that it had beene good for France〈◊〉 had never beene exacted.

This done, King Edward returnes home, and there finds a new busines with Scot∣land, upon this occasion. Edward Baylioll, sonne to Iohn Baylioll (sometimes King of Scotland) two and thirty yeares after his fathers deposition, beganne now to shew himselfe, attempting the recovery of that Crowne; and comming out of Frace, where he had all that while remained; and getting aide under-hand in Englad, with them he suddenly assailes those who had the government of Scotland, during the Nonage of the young King David, (being at that time with the King of Frace) and in a battell overcame them, with the slaugher of many Noble men, and thou∣sands of the common people; and thereupon was immediatly Crowned King of Scotland at Scone. But notwithstanding this great defeat, King Baylioll was for∣ced to retire him into England to get more aide of King Edward: who now shewes himselfe in the action, joynes with Baylioll against his brother in Law, King David; goes in person with a strong Army to recover Berwicke, which after three moneths siege, being valiantly defended by the Lord Seton, was taken in; and the Army of the Scots which came to the rescue thereof, at Hallidowne-hill, utterly defeated: where were slaine seven Earles, ninety knights and Bannerets, foure hundred Esquires, and about two and thirty thousand common Souldiers, as our Writers report; as theirs, but foureteene thousand: and with this effusion of bloud is Baylioll returned to his miserable kingdome, and to hold good correspondence with the King of England hereafter, doth him Homage for his Realme of Scotland, and the Ilands adjacent. But though he had a kingdome, yet he had not quietnesse, for many of the Scots ai∣ded by the French, made warre upon him divers yeares after; during all which time, King David with his wife remained in France. If any man marvell why King Ed∣ward would aide Bailioll against King David, who had married his sister; he may consider that Alliances, how neare soever, weigh but light in the Scales of State.

About this time the Ile of Man is conquered by William Montacute, Earle of Slisbury; for which service King Edward gave him the Title of King of Man.

Page  159

Of his Acts after he came of age.

ANd now Robert of Arthois banished out of France, comes into England, whom King Edward makes Earle of Richmond, and of his Counsell. This Robert per∣swades King Edward to make warre upon France, to which Crowne (he said) he had more right then he that held it; with whose perswasions, King Edward is at last resolved to undertake the enterprise: and to furnish himselfe of Noble Chiefe∣taines, he at one time in a Parliament at Westminster, the eighth yeare of his Raign, creates sixe Earles, Henry of Lancaster he made Earle Drby, William Montacute he made Earle of Salisbury, Hugh Audeley Earle of Glocester, William Clinton Earle of Huntington, and Robert Clifford or Ufford Earle of Suffolke; also twenty knights, of whom Thomas de la Moore, who writ the life of the Kings Father, was one: withall he enters League of amity with many Princes abroad, with the Dukes and Erles of Gelders, Iulyers, Cleves, Heynault, and Brabant, and with the Arch-bishop of Co∣len, and Valeran his brother: as on the other side, the King of France got to take his part the Bishop of Liege, Iohn King of Bohemia, Earle of Luxemburg, Henry Count Palatine, Aubert Bishop of Mets, Otho Duke of Austria, Ame Earle of Geneva, with many other Princes and Captaines out of Germany, Spaine, and other Countries. King Edward thus resolved in himselfe, and furnished with friends abroad, goes over into Flanders with his Queene and children, makes his residence at Antwerp, where by perswasion of the Flemings he takes upon him the Stile, Title, and Armes of the King of France; for by this they accounted themselves disobliged of the Bond of twenty hundred thousand crownes, which they had entred into, never to beare Armes against the King of France; and hereupon the League was established be∣tweene them and King Edward. And now King Edward for a beginning to put his claime in execution, sets upon Cambray, and enters France by the way of Verman∣dois and Thierach; on the other side King Philip seiseth on the Dutchy of Guienne, and sends thither the Conte d' Eu, Constable of France, with the Earles of Foix and Ar∣migniack. At last both Armies came so neare together, that a fight was appointed the Friday after; but upon better consideration, the English thought it no discretion to give battell to an Army so much greater then their owne, if they could avoid it; and the French thought it as little discretion for them to hazard the person of their Prince within his owne kingdome; and perhaps were not a little moved with the warning given them by Robert King of Sicilie, a great Astronomer, that he fore-saw by the Starres, some great misfortune to threaten the French, if they should that day fight with the Englih, King Edward being present: and thus both Armies having their severall reasons to decline the battell, they parted without doing any thing; onely an accident happened scarce worth remembring, yet must be remembred. A Hare starting out before the head of the French Army, caused a great shout to be made; whereupon, they who saw not the Hare, but onely heard the shout, suppo∣sing it to be the onset to the battell, disposed themselves to fight, and foureteene Gentlemen for encouragements sake, as the custome is, were knighted; called af∣terward in merriment, knights of the Hare.

But now King Edward must a little looke home, and therefore leaving the Queen in Brabant, he passeth himselfe into England about Candlemas, having beene in Bra∣bant about a yeare; and landing at the Tower about midnight, and finding t un∣guarded, was so much displeased, that he presently sends for the Major of ondon, commanding him to bring before him the Chancellour and Treasurer, with Sir Iohn Saint Paul, Michael Watch, Philp Thorpe, Henry Stratford, Clergy men, (who it seemes were Officers for his Receipts) and Iohn Sconer Justice of the Bench; all which, except the Chancellour, were apprehended and committed to prison; as were afterward in like manner divers Officers of Justice, and Accomptants, upon inquiry made of their unjust proceeding. During the Kings abode in England, William Montacute Earle of Salisbury, and Robert Ufford Earle of Suffolke, let in Flanders to oppose the French, having performed divers great eploits, were a last Page  160 in an encounter about Lise, so overlaid by multitude, as they were both taken, and sent prisoners to Paris. Besides, about this time two accidents happened that were thought would be great rubs in King Edwards proceeding; one, that his Wives Father, William Earle of Haynult, dying, and leaving his sonne to succeed, this son left his brother King Edward, and fell to take part with the King of France: the other, that the Duke of Normandy, thinking himselfe as strong as ever William Du•• of Normandy was that conquered England, he saw no reason but he might con∣quer it as well as that William; and thereupon makes preparation by Sea and Land to attempt the enterprise: but these were but vapours that never came to be winds, at least brought no stormes: for Iohn Earle of Haynault had quickly enough of the King of France, and was soone after reconciled to his brother King Edward; and the Duke of Normandy went no further then preparations: for indeed King Edw••d prosecuted his courses against France with such heate, that all the neighbouring Princes seeing a fire kindled so neare their owne borders, were glad to looke o themselves at home. But now to impeach the King of Englands returne into Frace King Philip had provided a mighty Navie in the Haven of Sluce, consisting of tw hundred saile of Ships (besides many Gallies) and two thousand armed men in th Port ready to encounter him upon his landing: whereof King Edward being adveti∣sed, prepares the like number of Ships, and sets out to Sea upon Midsommer Eve; is m the morrow after with a Navy likewise from the North parts, conducted by Sir ••∣bert Morley; and encounters his enemy who lay to intercept him with such force and courage, and such advantage of Wind and Sun, that he utterly defeated their whole Navy, took and sunke all their Ships, slew thirty thousand men, and landed with as great glory, as such a victory (the greatest that ever before was gotten by the E∣glish at Sea) could yeeld, though King Edward himselfe was there wounded with an Arrow in the thigh. Most of the French, rather then to endure the Arrowes of the English, or be taken, desperately leapt into the Sea; whereupon the French Kings Jester, set on to give him notice of this overthrow, (which being so ill newes, no•• else would willingly impart unto him) said, and oftentimes repeated it in the Kings hearing; Cowardly English men, Dastardly English men, faint-hearted Englis men the King at length asked him why for that (said he) they durst not leap out of their Ships into the Sea, as our brave French men did. By which speech the King apprehend a notion of this overthrow: which the French attribute to Nichol••••∣chet, one of their chiefe Commanders, who had armed his Ships with men of base condition (content with small pay) and refused Gentlemen and sufficient Souldiers, in regard they required greater wages: And indeed it often happens that the avarice of Commanders is the occasion of great defeats.

By this victory King Edward gained a free entrance into Flanders, and present∣ly went and besieged Tournay with an Army of five and fifty thousand, but was so valiantly encountred by the Duke of Burgundy and the Earle of Armigniack, that they routed his Army, and slew foure thousand upon the place; which so enraged King Edward, that two dayes after he sent a Challenge to King Philip to meete him in single combate, or with an hundred against as many, before the wals of Tourn••. King Philip answers, that his Challenge being made to Philip de Valois, withou mention of King, he tooke it not to be to him, who was truly King of France but he wished him to remember the Homage he had done him at Amiens, and the wrong he did to the Christian world by his troublesome courses to hinder him from his voyage intended to the Holy Land. Besides this answer in writing he sends to him by word of mouth; that by his Challenge he hazarded nothing of his owne, but exposed onely the Dominion of another, which was against all rea∣son: but if he would set his kingdome of England, though much meaner, agai••• his of France, he would then accept the Challenge, and meete him in the field 〈◊〉 single combate. But this King Edward would not hearken to for as he was valiant to make the Challenge, so he was circumspect to looke to the conditions. But here upon he continues his siege of T••rnay; to the reliefe whereof King Philip sends all the forces he could possibly make by himselfe o his friends; and after the siege Page  161 had continued three moneths, partly by mediation of Robert King of Sicilie, but chiefely by the Lady Iane of Valois, sister to King Philip, and mother of King Ed∣wards wife (who had vowed her selfe a Nunne; but to doe this good office, tra∣velled from one to another) a Truce was concluded for a yeare, and both their Ar∣mies are dissolved.

After this, K. Edward returning into England, was advertised how the Scots after many other places gained, had besieged the Castle of Striveling; for reliefe where∣of, the King makes all the haste he can; and yet before he could come, it was by force of battery, compelled to render it selfe upon conditions. Then King Edward being at Berwicke, passeth to New-Castle upon Tyne, where he staies a moneth waiting for his provision that was to come by Sea; but that being driven into other parts by tempest, he makes a Truce with the Scots for three or foure moneths, and then returnes home. In the time of this Truce; the Scots send to King David, to come and governe the kingdome in his owne person; who thereupon taking his leave of the King of France, with whom he had remained seven yeares, he with his wife Ioane, King Edwards sister, returnes into Scotland; where after he had beene most honourably received by the Prince of Ornay, and the other Lords and Barons of the Kingdome, as soone as the Truce was ended, with a strong Army enters Nor∣thumberland, passing on to New-Castle upon Tyne, where he plants his Campe. Of this Castle, Iohn Nevile was left governour by King Edward, who sending out certaine companies, tooke the Earle Murray prisoner, and with the slaughter of di∣vers of his men, and rich booties, returned backe to his Castle; which so incen∣sed King David, that he assaulted the Castle as a man enraged, but finding it too strong for his taking, he then passed into the Province of Durham, where he used all kinds of cruelty, first upon the Countrey, and then upon the City, killing men, women and children, Clergy, and others; burning and destroying houses and Churches, and utterly defacing it. From thence he passeth on to the Castle of Sa∣lisbury, which Castle belonged to William Mountacute Earle of Salisbury in right of his wife; but himselfe being then prisoner in France, onely his Countesse, and one William Mountacute a Cousin of his, was in the Castle. This William perceiving the Scottish horse to be so over-charged with pillage, that they were scarce able to goe; issues out of the Castle with forty horse, sets upon them, kils two hundred, and takes sixe score, whom he brings with their rich pillage, into the Castle. King Da∣vid soone after with his whole Army arrived, but hearing of King Edwards com∣ming (who certified of these things, made all the haste he could) he retires him∣selfe from thence; and King Edward finding him gone before he came, yet would needs goe in and visit the Countesse: of whom, as soone as he saw her, he was so enamoured, that he laid more battery to her chastity, then King David had done to her Castle; but finding it inexpugnable, after a day and a night he left it, and fol∣lowed after the Scots, with whom for three dayes together he had many skirmishes, till at last a Truce was concluded for two yeares; and amongst other conditions, William Earle of Salisbury, prisoner with the King of France, was set at liberty in exchange for the Earle Murray, prisoner with the King of England.

About this time another difference fell out betweene the Kings of France and England. Iohn Earle of Montford laid claime to the Dutchy of Britaine, but in the quarrell was taken prisoner by the King of France: his Lady sends to King Edward for succour; which King Edward grants upon condition that a marriage be made betweene his daughter Mary and the Earle of Montfords sonne; which being agreed on, he sends over to her aide, first, Walter de Manny a valiant knight, and afterward Robert d' Arthois: but whilest his Army was preparing, King Edward was informed by Edward Baylioll, the pretended King of Scotland, and Governour of Berwicke, that the Scots had not kept the conditions of the Truce; whereupon King Edward drawes a great Army to Berwicke, with a purpose to doe great matters, but nothing was done, for a new Truce was againe concluded for two yeares. By this time Robert d' Arthois had made ready his Army, and taking with him the Countesse of Montford, the Earles of Pembroke, Salisbury, and Suffolke, and many other Barons; Page  162 after great tempests and encounters at Sea lands safely at last neare to Vannes, which was held by the French, and laying ••ege to the City, with the assistance of Walter de Manny, who came unto him, after many assaults, at last he tooke it, to the great joy of the Countesse of Montford, though she held it not long; for certaine resolute French knights assaulted it soone after, and recovered it from the English. In which action many Lords were slaine or wounded, and particularly Robert de Arhois himselfe; who passing over into England, for the better curing of his wounds, soone after died, and was buried in Pauls Church in Lndon. And now King Edward himselfe with a strong Army passeth over into Britaine, and plants his Campe before the City of Vannes, where was like to have beene a cruell battell; but in the instant, there came from Pope Clment the sixth, two Cardinals, the Bi∣shops of Preneste and Thusculum; who upon certaine conditions concluded a Peace; amongst other conditions, this was one; that the City of Vannes should be delive∣red to ing Philip, and thereupon Iohn Earle of Montford should be set at liberty, but yet with this charge, not to goe into Britaine: which promise notwithstanding, he kept not, but went presently and besieged a Towe in Britaine, though he were forced to retire, and died shortly after. But the Truce cracked hus, as it were, by Montford, was afterward absolutely broken by King Edward though he charged the breach of it upon K. Philip, and King Philip upon him. But howsoever broken it was; and Henry of Lancaster Earle of Derby, with divers other Earles and Barons, is sent into France, who won many Townes in Gascoyne and in the Counties of Perigort and Tholose, and then went to winter at Burdeaux. And afterward, in May following, pursuing his victories, he wonne many mor Townes; and amongst others, the great Towne of Reoll. After this againe, he tooke Montpesat, Maurore, Villefranche, and many other Townes; and at last the great City of Angolesme, and then came to winter againe at Burdeaux.

Of his Acts together with the Prince.

KING Philip informed of so many great losses, assembles a mighty Army, no lesse then a hundred thousand men, with which he recovers Miremont, and Villefranche, and then proceeded to besiege Angoulesme, whom the Earle of Derby having not forces sufficient to encounter, King Edward (leaving for Wardens of England in his absence, the Lords Percie and Nevill) goeth himselfe in person with an Army (as Froyssard saith) of fourescore thousand men at Armes, and ten thou∣sand Archers, besides those out of Wales and Ireland; taking with him his sonne, the Prince of Wales, and Duke of Guyenne, being then but of the age of fifteene yeares. It may be thought preposterous in King Edward, to put his sonne to be a Souldier before he was come to be a man; but it seemes he had a longing to try his sonnes valour in the bud, and perhaps was loath to omit any thing that might give any countenance to this battell, in which the two kingdomes were laid as it were at stake; but howsoever, taking him along with him, and almost all the Lords of his kingdome, he takes Shipping, and lands at Normandy, where at the first setting his foote on ground, he tooke such a fall, that the bloud gushed out at his nose; which the Barons tooke for an ill signe, but the King tooke it for a good: saying, it was a signe that the Land desired to have him: and in deede he presently tooke the Townes of Harsteur, Moulbourg, Carenton, and Saint Lo, and afterward the City of Can it selfe; and from thence passed to the County of Eureux, saccaged and pillaged it, as also the City of Gisors, Vernon, Meulan, and Boulebourse to the City of Poyssy. King Philip all this while staied about Paris, as looking for King Edward to give him battell there; and for that purpose had planted his Campe neare to Saint Ger∣mans; but King Edward deceived him: for going from Poyssy, he passed into Picar∣die and Ponthie, where he tooke and burned many Townes and Castles: and then passed the River of 〈◊〉, though not without danger: for King Philip had sent thi∣ther Gundemar de Fay with a thousand horse, and sixe thousand foote, to stop his pas∣sage: King Edward notwithstanding resolves to passe, or perish, and plungeth fore∣m•••Page  163 into the River; crying out, They who love me, will follow me at which voyce, 〈◊〉 man strove who should be foremost, and so the shoare was presently gained by the English. Gunemar astonished with this bold adventure, astonisheth his peo∣••• with his fearfull countenance: so that the English encountring the French all in 〈◊〉, put them to flight. King Philip enraged with this dishonour, resolves to 〈◊〉 it; and presently provokes King Edward to a battell. King Edward had 〈◊〉••camped in a Village called Cressy, his Army consisted of thirty thousand 〈◊〉hich he divided into three battalions: the first was led by the young Prince 〈…〉, with whom were joyned the Earle of Warwicke, Geoffrey of Harecourt,〈◊〉Hollad, Ricard Stafford, Iohn Chandoes, Robert Nevile, and many other 〈◊〉 and Gentlemen, to the number of eight hundred men at Armes, two thou∣〈…〉, and a thousand Welsh. In the second were the Earles of Northam∣••••nd of 〈◊〉, the Lords Rosse, Basset, and others, to the number of eight hun∣〈…〉 Armes, and twelve hundred Archers. In the third the King was him∣••••• hving about him seven hundred men at Armes, and three thousand Archers. 〈◊〉 battels thus ordered, mounted on a white Hobby, he rode from ranke to ranke 〈◊〉••em; encouraging every man that day to have regard to his right and ho∣〈…〉 The French Kings Army was farre greater, consisting of above sixty thou∣〈…〉 well armed; whereof the chiefe were Charles Duke of Alanson〈…〉Iohn of Luxembourg King of Bohemia, Charles de Blois the Kings 〈…〉 Duke of Lorraine, the Earles of Flanders, Nevers, Sancerre; of Ba∣〈…〉 and Gentlemen, about three thousand. The Vauntguard he commits to his rother the Count de Alanson, the Reere to the Earle of Savoy, the maine bat∣tell e lead himselfe; his heate out of confidence of victory was so great, that 〈…〉 permitted time for a little counsell what was fit to be done. The old King 〈…〉 advised that the Army should take some repast, and that the Infantry c•••isting of Geoueses (which were above fifteene thousand Crossebowes, and 〈◊〉 men should make the first Front, and the Cavallery to follow; which was a∣greed on. But the Count of Alanson, contrary to this order, tooke it ill that the 〈◊〉 were in the first ranke, and in fury caused them to change place; which 〈…〉 discontentment, that it irritated them more against the Leader, then the 〈◊〉; besides there fell at the instant, such a showre of raine, as dissolved their 〈◊〉, and made their Bowes of little use; and at the breaking up of the showre, the 〈…〉 full in the face of the French (dazling their sight) and on the backe of the 〈◊〉, as if all made for them. K. Edward who had gotten to a Windmill, beholding 〈◊〉 a Sentinell, the countenance of the Enemy, and discovering the disturbance 〈◊〉 by the change of place; instantly sends to charge that part, without giving 〈…〉 to re-accommodate themselves; whereupon the discontented Gen••ese〈◊〉 which the Cont de Alanson perceiving, he comes on with the horse, and 〈…〉age cries out, On, on, Let us make way upon the bellies of these Genoueses,〈…〉 but hinder us: and instantly pricks on with a full careere through the midst 〈…〉, followed by the Earles of Lorraine and Savoy, and never staies till he came 〈◊〉 the English battell, where the Prince was; the fight grew hot and doubtfull, 〈…〉 as the Commanders about the Prince send to King Edward to come up with his power to aide him. The King askes the messengers whether his son were 〈…〉 hurt: who answering, no; but that he was like to be over-laid: Well then (〈◊〉he King) returne, and tell them who sent you, that so long as my sonne is a∣〈…〉 they send no more to me what ever happen; for I will that the honour of this 〈…〉 his. And so being left to try for themselves, they wrought it out with the 〈◊〉 the rather by reason the French King having his horse slaine under him, and 〈◊〉 danger to be trodden to death, had he not been recovered by the Lord Beau∣〈…〉••s to the great discouragement of his people, withdrawne out of the field: 〈◊〉 no••ce being once taken by the English, the day was soone after theirs, and 〈…〉 victory they ever had yet against the French, and so bloudy, as there is 〈…〉 made of any one prisoner taken in the battell, but all laine out-right; nely ome few troopes that held together, saved themselves by retiring to places Page  164 neare adjoyning. The French King himselfe with small company, got to Bray in the night, and approaching the walls, and the Gurd asking him who goes there? he answered, the Fortune of Fr••c. By i voyce e was knowne, and thereupon received into the Towne, with the teares and lamentaions of his people. The number of the slaine are certified to be thirty thousand: the chiefe whereof, were Charles de Alnsn, Iohn Duke of 〈◊〉, alph Earle of Lorraine, Lwis Earle of Fl•••ers, Iques Dalphin de 〈◊〉, So••e to Ibrt, (who after gave Daulphin to the Crowne of France) the Earl•• of S••crre, Hrcourt, and many other Earles, Barons, and Gentlemen, to the number of fiftee•• hundred. This memorable Victory happened upon the Sturday after Bart••l•••• day, in the yeare 1346. The next day, earely in the morning, being Sunday, he sn out 300. Lances, and 2000. Archers to discover what was becom of t••〈◊〉 who found great Troopes comming from Abbe••l, Saint 〈…〉, ad B••u∣voyes, (ignorant of what had happened 〈◊〉 by the Arch-Bishop of R•••, and the Priour of France: whom they likewise defeated, and slew sven thou∣sand.

But this was not all th Victories that fell to King Edward that yeare, there was another of no lesse importance gotten in Engl••d, by the Queene and hi peopl at home against the Scots; who being set on by the French, to divert the wa••• there entred upon this kingdome withreescoe thousand men, (as our Writers report) assuring himselfe of successe, in regard (as he supposed) the ma••e stregth there∣of was now gone into France; but e found it otherwise For the Lords of the North, as Gylbert de Umfrevile, the Earl of Ang•••, Henry Perc, Ralph Nevile, William Dyco••t, with the Arch-bishop of Yorke, the Bishop of Duram, and o∣thers of the Clergy, gathered so great Forces, and so well ordered them, by the animation of the Queene, (who was there in person) as fighting a great Battaile at Nevils Crosse in the Bishopricke of Durha, they utterly defeaed this great Ar∣my, tooke David their King Prisoner, with the Earles of Fif, Menteth, Murry, Sutherland, the Lord Dowglas, the Arch-bishop of Saint Andrewes, and others; and put to the sword fifteene thousand Scts. This Victory also fell upon a Satur∣day, sixe weekes after that of Cressy. He that tooke King David Prisoner, wa one Iohn Cplnd, an Esquire of Northumberland, whom King Edward rewarded with five hundred pounds land a yeare, and made him a Bannert. And as if all concurred to make this yeare Triumphant, the Aides sent to the Countesse of Montford in Britaine, led by Thomas Dagworth a Valiant knight, overthrew and tooke Prisoner, Charles de Blois, Pretender to that Dutchy, and with him Mounsi∣ur la Vall, the Lords Rochford, Bea••anoyre, Loicue; with many other Barons, Knights, and Esquires: Where were slaine the Lord De la Vall, Father to him that was taken, Viscount Rohan, Mounsieur de Chastea Bryan, de alestroit, de Quin∣tin, de Dyrevll, besides many other knights and Esquires, to the number of se∣ven hundred. And now King Edward without medling with the great Cities of Amiens and Abbevile, marcheth on directly, and sits downe before Callice, a Town of more importance for England, and the Gate to all the rest: Wherein Iohn d Vienne Marshall of France, and the Lord de Andreghn, (a great man in his time) commanded.

All that Winter King Edward lay without any molestation by the French King, who was busied at home in his owne State about raising of money; where∣with supplyed at last, he raiseth an Army and approacheth Callice, but findes no way open to come to relieve it. The King of England was both Master of the Ha∣ven, and possest all other wayes that were passable; and the Flemings his friends had besieged Aire; to oppose whom, Iohn Duke of Normandy is sent for out of Guyenne: who departing leaves Henry of Lancaster Earle of Derby, Master of the Field, and e having an Army consisting of twelve hundred men at Armes, two thousand Archers, and three thousand other Foot, takes in most of the Townes of Xaintoigne, and Poict••, and in the end besieged and sacked Pityer, and then re∣turnes to Brdeax, with more illage then his people could well beare: Thus the Page  165〈◊〉 prosper every ••here, and the French suffer. During this siege of Callie, (n 〈◊〉 some tin•• King Edw••• first used Gunnes) the Fleming send to King 〈◊〉 to make a marriage betweene his Daughter Isabell and their Lord the 〈…〉; to which the King consented, but the Duke of Br•••nt gets 〈…〉 of 〈◊〉, o make the match for a Daughter of his The Flemings presse 〈◊〉 Lord with te match of England; but he absolutely refuseh it, saying h〈◊〉 never marry a Daughter of him, that had killed his Father, though he would 〈…〉••lf his kingdome. This answer so incensed the Flemigs, that they 〈…〉 Lord in Prison, till with long durance he at last consented; and there 〈…〉Eward and his Queene, with their Daughter Is•••ll, come over to 〈…〉 there the young Earle is affaned to her; but returning after••rds 〈…〉 as e found opportunity, he went to King Philip, and eft 〈…〉; and marryed afterwards a Daughter of the 〈…〉 this whi••he siege of Callice was continued; and King Philip〈…〉 come to relieve it; sollicits King Edward to appoint some place 〈…〉 would meee him. But King Edward returnes answer, that if he 〈…〉 owne way to come thither to him, there he should finde him, but 〈…〉 be would not pa••• having laine there so long to his great l••our and 〈…〉 bing now so neare the point of gaining the place Twoa•••nals 〈…〉 the Pope, to mediate a Peace, but could effect nothing, so as the 〈…〉 ws forced to breake up his Army and retire to Paris, leaving Cllice〈…〉 the Besieger: which when the Towne understood, they sent to de∣〈…〉 granted, and therein received this finall answer, that ixe of the chiefe Burgesses should be sent to the King, bare-headed, bare-footed, in their shirts, 〈…〉 their neckes the keyes of the Towne and Castle in their hands, 〈…〉 th•••elves to the Kings will; the rest he was content to take to mercy. 〈…〉 condition, and much difficulty who should be those sixe: but 〈◊〉 up, and out of love to his Country offering himselfe to be one, the sixe 〈…〉 made p; for now by his example every one strove to be of the 〈◊〉 who presenting themselves before the King, he commanded them instantly 〈…〉 to death. Great supplication was made by his Lords for their lives, but 〈…〉 would not be drawne to alter his sentence, till the Queene, great with 〈…〉 on her knees, and with teares obtained pardon for them; which done, 〈…〉 them to be cloathed, and besides a good repast, gives to every one of them 〈◊〉 Nobles a pece. But though the King in this sentence shewed severity, 〈…〉 Act before he had shewed mercy; For when Victuals began to faile in 〈…〉, and all unusefull persons, as old men, women, and children, were put 〈…〉 Gates; he forced them not backe againe as he might have done, there∣••〈◊〉 sooner to consume their store; but suffered them to passe through his Ary〈◊〉 them to eate, and two pence a piece to all of them. And thus was that strong 〈◊〉 of Callice gotten, the third day of August, in the yeare 1347. after eleven 〈…〉 siege, and continued afterward in possession of the English two hundred 〈…〉. All the Inhabitants are turned out, but onely one Priest, and two 〈…〉 to informe of the Orders of the Towne: and a Colony of English, a∣mogst which seven and thirty good Families out of London is sent to inhabit it〈…〉 and Queene enter the Towne triumphantly, and make their abode there, 〈◊〉 Queene was brought a bed of her Daughter Margaret. The King made 〈◊〉 of the Town Aymey of Pavia a Lombard, whom he had brought up from 〈…〉, and then with his Queene returnes into England; at which time the 〈◊〉 Electours send to signifie that they had chosen him King of the Romans, but 〈…〉 refuseth to accept it, as being an honour out of his way, and scarce com∣〈…〉 his State at home.

fter this Tr•••s were made by mediation, from one time to another, for the 〈…〉wo yeares, in which time, Geoffrey de Charmy Captaine of Saint Omer,〈…〉Aymery of Pvia, whom King Edward had left Governour of Callice, to 〈…〉 for twenty thousand Crownes: which King Edward hearing of, sent to Page  166Amery, and charged him with this perfidiousnesse; whe•••pon Ay•••y comes to the King, and humbly desiring pardon, promiseth to hndl the 〈◊〉 so as shall be o the Kings advantage, and thereupon i sen backe to Callice. The King, the ight before the time of agreement arrives with three unded men at 〈◊〉, and 〈◊〉 hundred Archers: 〈◊〉 de Charmy〈…〉 likewise the 〈◊〉••ght from Saint Omers with his Forces, and sent a hundred mn before with the Crownes to 〈◊〉: the men are let in at a Posterne Gate the crownes received, nd assured to be all weight: which done, the Gates of the Towne are opened, and out marches the King before day, to encounter 〈◊〉 de Charmy; who perceiving himselfe betrayed, defended imselfe the best he could, and put King Edward to a hard bickering, who for that e would not b〈…〉 person, put hiself and the Prince under the Colours of the Lord 〈…〉 beaen ••wne on is knees by 〈…〉hom he fought hand to hand) and ye recove••d, and 〈…〉 pri∣soner. Charmy was likewise taken, and all his Fo•••• defeated. Kig dward the night after (which was the first of the New-yeare) feasted with the Prisoners, and gave ibo•••nt in honour of his valou, 〈…〉 Chaplet of Pearle, which himselfe wore on his head, (for a New-yeares gift) forgave him his ransome, and set him at liberty. But the English not long after, in the like practise, had better successe, and got the Castle of Guysnes, (a piece of great importance nerCallice,) for a summe of money, given to one Beaconry a French ••n. Of which Csle, when the French King demanded restitution in regard of the Truc, King Edwar returnes answer, that for things bought and sold betweene their people, there was no ex∣ception, and so held it.

About this time Philip King of France dyed, leaving his Sonne Iohn to succeed him; in the beginning of whose Raigne, Humber Pince of D••lphin, dying with∣out issue, made him his Heire, and therupon Charles King Ioh•• Sonne, was crea∣ted the first Daulphin of France: from whence it grew to be a Custome, that the King of France his Heire should alwayes be called Daulphin of France. About this time also the Duke of Lancaster was to perfome a combat, upon a challenge, with a Prince of Bhmia, but when they were entred the Lists, and had taken their Oathes, King Iohn interposed, and made them Friends. And now when after ma∣ny meanes of mediation, no Peace could be concluded betweene the two Kings; the Prince of Wales being now growne a man, is appointed by Parliament, to goe into Gascoyne with a thousand men at Armes, two thousand Archers, and a great number of Welshmen; and in Iune following he sets forth with three hundred Saile, attended with the Earles of Warwick, Suffolke, Salisbury, and Oxford, the Lord Chands, the Lord Iames Adeley, Sir obert Knolles, Sir Francis Hall, with many others. About Michaelma following the King himselfe passeth over to Callice, with another Army, taking with him two of his Sonnes, Linll of Antwerpe, now Earle of Ulster i Right of his Wife, and Iohn of Gant, Earle of Richmond. There met him at Callice of mercenaries out of Germany, Flanders and Brabant, a thousand men at Armes, so that his Army consisted of three thousand men at Armes, and two thousand Archers on horse-backe, besides Archers on foot. The City of London sent three hundred men at Armes, and five hundred Archers, all in one li∣very, at their owne charge; but all this great Army effected nothing at that time, by reason the King of France would not be drawne to any Encounter, and had so disfurnished the Country of all provisions, that the King of England was forced to returne. King Edward solicited by the King of Navarre to aide him against the King of France, sends over the Due of Lancaster with foure thousand men at Armes, who winnes many Townes and the Prince enters Gyenne, passeth o∣ver Langndc to Tholouse, Narbonne, Burges, without any Encounter, sackes, spoyles and destroyes where he goes, and loaden with booties returnes to Burdeaux. The French King thus assaulted on all ides, gathers all the power he possibly could, and first makes against his Eemies in N•••••dy, recovers many of his lost Townes, and was likely to have there prevaile, but that he was drawne of force to oppose Page  167〈◊〉 fresh Invader, the Prince of Wales, who was come up into Tourayne, against 〈◊〉 he brings his whole Army, consisting of above threescore thousand: where∣•••• the Prince, whose Forces were not likely to be able to encounter him (being 〈◊〉 for one) was advised to retire againe to Burdeaux. But the French King, to pre∣ve•• this course, followes; and within two leagues of Poyctiers, hath him at a 〈◊〉 advantage: at which instant, two Cardinals came from the Pope to mediate Pece. But the French King supposing he had his enemy now in his mercy, would accept of no other conditions, but that the Prince should deliver him foure Hosta∣ge, nd s vanquished, render himselfe and his Army to his discretion. The Prince wa content to restore unto him what he had gained upon him, but without prju∣•••• of his honour, wherein he said he stood accomptable to his Father, and to his Cutry. But the French King would abate nothing of his demands, as making himslf sure of victory; and thereupon was instantly ready to set upon the Princ: 〈◊〉 seeing himselfe reduced to this straight, takes what advantage he could of th〈◊〉, and providently got the benefit of Vines, Shrubs, and Bushes, on that part 〈…〉 like to be assailed, to impester and intangle the French horse, which he saw 〈◊〉ome furiously upon him. The successe answered his expectation, for the 〈◊〉 of his enemies upon their first assault were so wrapt and encombred 〈◊〉he Vines, that his Archers galled and annoyed them at their pleasure. For 〈◊〉Fre••h King, to give the honour of the day to his Cavallery, imployed them onely without his Infantery; so as they being disordered and put to rout, his whol Army came utterly to be defeated. In this battell were taken prisoners, King Iohn himselfe, with his yongest sonne Philip, by Dennis de Morbecque a knight of Arhis; Iaques de Bourbon, Conte de Ponthieu; the Arch-bishop of Sens; Iohn de Arthis; Conte de En; Charles de Arthois; his brother Count de Longueville; Iohn de 〈◊〉, Count de Tankarvile; the Counts of Vendosme, Vademont, Estampes, Salbourg, 〈◊〉 and La Roche; also Iohn de Ceintre, accounted (as Froissard saith) the 〈◊〉night of France, with many other Lords, besides two thousand Knights and Genlemen; in so much, as the Conquerours holding it not safe to retaine so many, le••ny of them goe. The French, who can give best account of their owne losses, ••por there died in the battell, a thousand seven hundred Gentlemen, amongst which were fifty two Bannerets: the most eminent, Peter de Bourbon, the Duke of Ath••s Constable of France, Iehan de Clermont Marshall; Geoffrey de Charmy, High Chamberlain; the Bishop of Chalons, the Lords of Landas, of Pons, and of Cham∣••y. There escaped from this battell, three of the French Kings sons, (for he brought them all thither) Charles Prince Daulphin; Louys after Duke of Anjou; and Iohn Duke of B••ry all great actours in the time following. The special great men of the English i th•• fight, were the Earles of Warwicke, Suffolke, Salisbury, Oxford, Stafford; the Lord••Cobham, Spenser, Barkeley, Basset: of Gascoynes, Le Capital de Beuff; the Lords, Pumyer, Chaumont, and others. The Lord Iames Andeley wonne honour both by his valour, and his bounty; for having vowed to be foremost in this fight, he peformed his word, and sealed it with many wounds: for which the Prince ha∣ving rewarded him with the gift of five hundred Markes Fee-simple in England, he pesently gave it to foure of his Esquires; whereupon the Prince demanding whe∣ther he accepted not his gift? he answered, that these men had deserved the same as well s himselfe, and had more neede of it; with which reply the Prince was so well pleased, that he gave him five hundred Markes more in the same kinde. A rare example, where desert in the Subject, and reward in the Prince, strive which should be the greater.

And now, though King Iohn had the misfortune to fall into the hands of his enemy, yet he had the happinesse to fall into the hands of a Noble enemy; for Prince Edw. used him with such respect and observance, that he could not find much d••ference betweene his captivity and liberty. After the battell, which was fought the in•••enth day of September, in the yeare 1357. Prince Edward leads King Iohn and the captive Lords to Burdeux, where he retaines them till the spring following; but 〈◊〉 present newes of his victory to his Father: who thereupon causeth a ge∣nerall Page  168 Thanksgiving all England over eight dayes together: and in May following; King Iohn rather comming over with the Prince, then brought over by him, is lodged at the Savo; a Palace belonging to Henry Duke of Lancaster, and the fairest at that time about London. And King Edward, as though he thought it honour enough to have one King his prisoner at once, at the suite of his sister Queene Iane, he sets her Husband David King of Scots at liberty, after he had beene priso∣ner in England eleven yeares, but not without paying a Ransome, which was a hun-thousand Markes, to be paid in ten yeares.

After this, by mediation of Cardinals sent by the Pope, a Truce for two yeares is concluded betweene the two kingdomes of France and England, and in the time of this Truce, Articles of Peace betweene the two Kings are propounded King Edward requires the Dutchies of Norm•••• and Gyenn, the Counties of Poicto, Turaine, Mayne, and Anjo with all their ppureances as large as King Richard the first held them, and many other Provinces besides, and to hold them all with∣out Homage or any other service; to which Articles, King Iohn (weary of impri∣sonment) assents and seales, but the 〈◊〉nd Councell of France utterly reject it: whereupon King Edward in great displesure resolves to make an end of this worke with the sword, and to take possession of the kingdome of France; and lea∣ving his younger sonne Thomas Gove••our of his kingdome at home, with a Fleet of leven hundred saile, and taking all the great Lords of the Realme with him, he passeth over to Callice, dividing his Army into three battels, whereof one he com∣mits to the Prince of Wales, another to the Duke of Lancaster, and the hird he leads himselfe and first marching through 〈◊〉 where he takes in many Townes, he plants his sige afterward before 〈◊〉; but having spent there sixe or seven weekes without effecting any thing, he asseth thence, and takes in the Cities of Sens & Nevers; the Dutchy of, Brgoyne redeemes it self from spoil with paying two hun∣dred thousand Floens of gold: then he marcheth up to aris, and plants his Camp within two small Leagues of the Tow••, where e honoured 400. Esquires and Gentlemen with the Order of knighthood: but when Sir Walter de Manny had made a Bravado before the Gates of the City, and the King saw that the Daulphin would by no provocations be drawne out to battell; he raiseth his siege, and re∣turnes into Briaine to refresh his Army; from thence he marcheth towards Charres with a purpose to besiege that City, and though great offers were made him by the French, and Commissioners from the Pope solicited him with all earnestnesse to ac∣cept them, yet neither they, nor the Duke of Lancasters perswasions could prevaile with him, till a terrible torme of haile with thunder and lightning fell upon his Army, which so terrified him, being a warning as it were from Heauen, that he pre∣sently vowed to make Peace with the French King upon any reasonable conditions, as shortly after he did at a Treaty of Britigny neare to Chartres, upon these Articles: that the Fiefs of Thouars and Belleville, the Dutchy of Guyenne, comprising Gascoyne, Poictou, Sanogne, Limosin, Perigort, Quercie, Rhodes, Angoulesme, and Rochell, toge∣ther with the Counties of Guysnes and Callice, and some other places, with the Ho∣mages of the Lords within those Territories should be to the King of England, who besides was to have three Millions of crownes of gold whereof sixe hundred thousand in hand, foure hundred thousand the yeae following, and the rest in two yeares after: and for this the King of England, and his sonne the Prince of Wales, for them and their successours for ever, should renounce all their right pretended to the Cowne of France; the Dutchy of Normandy, the Countries of Touraine, An∣jou, Mayne, the Homage and Soveraignty of Britaine, and the Earledome of Flan∣ders; and within three weekes King Iohn to be rendred at Callice at the charge of the King of England, except the expenses of his house. For assurance of which ac∣cord, should be given into his hand five and twenty of the greatest Dukes and Lords of France for Hostages. The Scots not to be aided by the French King, nor the Flemmings by the English. This accord and finall Peace signed by both Kings, was ratified by their two eldest sonnes, Edward and Charles, and sworne unto by the Nobility of both kingdomes. The Hostages are delivered to King Edward, who Page  169 brought them into England; and thereupon King Iohn is honourably conducted to Callice, after he had remained prisoner in England neare about five yeares: but being come to Callice, he was detained there above three moneths, till the money which he was to pay in hand, could be provided; and for providing the rest he was put to hard shifts; being faine to give the Iewes leave to dwell in France for twenty yeares, paying twelve Florins a man at the entry, and sixe every yeare after. At this time the Prince by dispensation marries the Countesse of Kent, daughter to Edmund, brother to Edward the second, and his Father investing him with the Dutchy of A∣quitaine, he was now Prince of Wales, Duke of Aquitaine, Duke of Cornwall, and Earle of Chester and Kent: and not long after, with the Princesse his wife, he passeth over into France, and keepes his Court at Burdeaux.

This was now the yeare 1362. and the fiftieth yeare of King Edwards age, wherein for a Iubilee, he shewes himselfe extraordinarily gracious to his peopl, freely pardoning many offences, relesing prisoners, revoking exiles; with many o∣ther expressions of his love and bounty. The yeare following was famous for three Kings comming into England: Iohn King of France, Peter King of Cyprus, and Dvid King of Scots. The King of Cyprus came to solicite King Edward to joyne with other Princes in the Holy Warre, but receives onely royall entertain∣ment and excuses. The King of Scots came for businesse and visitation, but why the King of France came, is not so certaine, whether it were about taking order for his Hostages, or to satisfie King Edward for breach of some Articles, or else for love to the Countesse of Salisbury; or perhaps out of a desire to let England see his Majesty, being at liberty, which had beene darkened before by the cloud of captivity; but whatsoever the cause of his comming was, the cause of his staying (at least, of longer staying then he meant) was a mortall sicknesse, whereof (having lien all the Winter at the Savoy) in March or Aprill following, he died; and his bo∣dy convaied over into France, was buried at Saint Donis with his Ancestours. The Prince of Wales was now growne famous all the Christian world over, and the man to whom all wronged Princes seemed to appeale, and to flie for succour: for which end there came at this time to his Court, Iames King of Majorque, and hap∣pened to come at a time when the Princesse lay in; and thereupon he and Richard King of Navarre were taken to be Godfathers to his sonne Richard. For the like assistance also, there came at the same time to him, Peter King of Castile, driven out of his kingdome by the French, in favour to Peter King of Aragon: and Prince Edward, partly out of charity, to succour a distressed Prince, and partly out of po∣licy, to keepe his Souldiers in exercise; undertakes the enterprise, and was so pros∣perous in it, that with one battell, (having but thirty thousand against a hundred thousand) hee put King Peter in possession of his kingdome, though he was ill rewarded for his labour: for the ungratefull King would not so much as pay his Souldiers. An unfortunate journey for the Prince, for though he came back with victory, yet he brought backe with him such an indisposition of body, that he was never throughly well after: not perhaps by poyson, nor given him by his brother the Duke of Lancaster, though both were suspected; but there were causes of di∣stempering him enough besides, the Countrey, the season, the action it selfe; and it may be more marvelled that his Souldiers came home so well, then that he came so ill; but howsoever, being now returned, there was presently to his indisposition of body, added discontentment of minde: for not having meanes to pay his Souldiers, which forced him to winke at that which he could not chuse but see, and seeing, grieve at, how they preyed upon the Countrey, and thereupon how the Countrey murmured against him: and now to stop this murmuring, his Chancellour, the Bi∣shop of Rhodes, devised a new Imposition, of leavying a Frank for every Chimney, and this t