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stroke to himself and his kingdom. For this reason he had sent thither his most expert and faithful officers, namely, Boussac, the lord d'Eu, the bastard of Orleans, the lords de Gaucourt, de Graville, de Vilain, Poton de Saintrailles, la Hire, sir Theolde de Valperghe, sir Louis de Vaucourt, with others renowned in arms, and of great authority. They had under their daily command from twelve to fourteen hundred combatants, well tried and enterprising ; but sometimes more and sometimes less,—for the town was noi so completely surrounded but that the besieged could replenish themselves with provision or stores whenever they pleased.
Very many sallies and skirmishes took place during the siege, but it would be tiresome to relate the various successes that attended them ; but from what I have heard from wellinformed persons, I do not find that the besieged did any great damage to the enemy, except with their cannon and other like instruments from their walls. By one of these was slain sir Lancelot de Lisle, a very valiant English knight, and renowned in arms.
CHAPTER LIII.-A PREACHER, CALLED FRIAR THOMAS, CONVERTS MANY PERSONS, AND
INVEIGHS AGAINST THE EXTRAVAGANT DRESSES OF THE WOMEN, IN DIFFERENT
PLACES. In this year, a friar called Thomas Conecte, a native of Brittany, and of the Carmelite order, was much celebrated through parts of Flanders, the Tournesis, Artois, Cambresis, Ternois, in the countries of Amiens and Ponthieu, for his preachings. In those towns where it was known he intended to preach, the chief burghers and inhabitants had erected for him in the handsomest square, a large scaffold, ornamented with the richest cloths and tapestries, on which was placed an altar, whereon he said mass, attended by some monks of his order, and his disciples. The greater part of these last followed him on foot wherever he went, he hiinself riding on a small mule.
Having said mass on this platform, he then preached long sermons, blaming the vices and sins of each individual, more especially those of the clergy, who publicly kept mistresses, to the breach of their vows of chastity. In like manner, he blamed greatly the noble ladies, and all others who dressed their heads in so ridiculous a manner, and who expended such large sums on the luxuries of apparel. He was so vehement against them, that no woman thus dressed dared to appear in his presence ; for he was accustomed, when he saw any of them with such dresses, to excite the little boys to torment and plague them, giving them certain days of pardon for so doing, and which he said he had the power of granting. He ordered the boys to shout after them, Au hennin, au hennin ! * even when the ladies were departed from him and from hearing his invectives; and the boys pursuing them, endeavoured to pull down these monstrous head-dresses, so that the ladies were forced to seek shelter in places of safety. These cries caused many tumults between those who raised them and the servants of the ladies.
Friar Thomas, nevertheless, continued his abuse and invectives so loudly, that no women with high head-dresses any longer attended his sermons, but dressed in caps somewhat like those worn by peasants and people of low degree. The ladies of rank, on their return from these sermons, were so much ashamed, by the abusive expressions of the preacher, that the greater part laid aside their head-dresses, and wore such as those of nuns. But this reform lasted not long, for like as snails, when any one passes by them, draw in their horns, and when all danger seems over put them forth again,-so these ladies, shortly after the preacher had quitted their country, forgetful of his doctrine and abuse, began to resume their former colossal head-dresses, and wore them even higher than before.
Friar Thomas, however, acquired very great renown in the towns wherein he preacher from all ranks of people, for the boldness and justness of his remonstrances, more especially for those addressed to the clergy. He was received wherever he went with as much respect
* Au hennin. This was the name given by the preacher in the 15th century. For further particulars, see to those ridiculous colossal head-dresses worn by the ladies French Encyclopédic, vol, viii.
and reverence by the nobles, clergy, and common people, as if he had been an apostle of our Lord Jesus CHRIST, sent from heaven to earth. He was followed by multitudes of people, and his mule was led by knights, or those of high rank, on foot to the house wherein he was to lodge, which was commonly that of the richest burgher in the town; and his disciples
of whom he had many, were distributed among the best houses ; for it was esteemed a great favour when one of them lodged in the house of any individual.
When Friar Thomas arrived at his lodgings, he retired to a private chamber, and would not be visited by any but those of the family, except for a few moments. At the conclusion of his sermons, he earnestly admonished the audience, on the damnation of their souls and on pain of excommunication, to bring to him whatever backgammon-boards, chess-boards, ninepins, or other instruments for games of amusement, they might possess. In like manner did he order the women to bring their hennins,—and having caused a great fire to be lighted in front of his scaffold, he threw all those things into it.
Friar Thomas remained in these parts for the space of six months, and visited many great cities, such as Cambray, Tournay, Arras, Amiens, and Therouenne, wherein he made many celebrated sermons, to the delight of the lower ranks, who sometimes assembled to hear him to the number of from sixteen to twenty thousand persons. At his sermons he divided the women from the men by a cord; for he said he had observed some sly doings between them while he was preaching. He would not receive any money himself, nor permit any of the preachers who attended him to do so, but was satisfied if presents were made to him of rich church ornaments, if his disciples were clothed, and his own expenses paid. The people were very happy in thus gratifying him.
Many persons of note, in the conviction that to serve him would be a pious act, believing him to be a prudent and holy man, followed him everywhere, deserting their parents, wives, children and homes. In this number was the lord d'Antoing, and some others of the nobility. When he had remained any time, without the clergy attempting to confute his reasonings, he departed with the love of the people, but with the indignation of some churchmen. He embarked at the port of St. Valery, to return to Brittany, where he had been born.
CHAPTER LIV.—A GRAND TOURNAMENT IN THE CITY OF BRUSSELS. At this period the duke of Burgundy set out, grandly accompanied by the nobles of his country, for Brussels, to be present at a tournament that was to be given there during the carnival. The son of the demoisel de Gazebeque was the founder of the prize. The duke of Burgundy was magnificently feasted by his cousin duke Philip of Brabant, the great barons of the country, and by the city of Brussels. On the day of the tournament, the two dukes were matched against each other, as well as their nobles, by the advice of prudent counsellors and heralds at arms, to avoid any accidents that might happen.
There were this day from seven to eight score helmets in the market-place at Brussels who made a fine show ; for they were all richly dressed, and adorned with their emblazoned surcoats. When the officers-at-arms had made the usual proclamations, the tournament commenced, and many hardy strokes were given ; but the prize was adjudged to a gentleman of Brabant, called Jean Linquart. On the morrow, and the ensuing day, were great joustings: on the first, the duke of Brabant gained the prize, and on the second, the lord de Mamines won it. With regard to the dancings and banquets, there were abundance of both, and crowds of ladies and damsels richly dressed according to the fashions of the country. There were likewise very many masquerades of the ladies and gentlemen.
During the feast, the sword was given to the lord de Croy, knight to the duke of Burgundy, who, having considered a while, had another tournament proclaimed to be holden on an appointed day in the town of Mons, in Hainault; but which, from certain causes that interfered at that time, did not take place.
The duke of Burgundy, having tarried in the city of Brussels from four to five days, set out on his return home to Flanders, notwithstanding the weather was then very severe, with frost and snow. The other lords returned to the places whence they came.
- CHAPTER LV.-THE COUNT DE NAMUR DIES, AND MAKES THE DUKE OF BURGUNDY HIS HEIR.
The count de Namur, who was very old, died in the course of this year. He had, some time before his death, sold to the duke of Burgundy his county of Namur, with its dependencies; and on his decease the duke advanced thither, when peaceable possession was given to him of the whole ; and he appointed commissioners and captains to govern and defend it at his pleasure. The Liegeois, who bordered on Namur, were not well pleased at this accession of power to the duke of Burgundy, whom they feared before, and very much disliked, because duke John, his father, and duke William, his uncle, had formerly conquered them, as bas been related in the earlier part of this work. The Liegeois held, at this time, the strong town of Mont-Orgueil, situated near to Bouvines *, which was said to belong to Namur, and, as such, the duke of Burgundy wished to have it; but the Liegeois refused to yield it up, and hence began a quarrel on each side. The duke, finding that he could not gain it amicably, returned to Flanders, and secretly raised a body of men-at-arms, whom he despatched, under the command of sir John Blondel, and Gerard, bastard of Brimeu, to the country of Liege, with orders to win the tower of Mont-Orgueil by force. When they had approached the walls, and were preparing their scaling-ladders, they were seen by the garrison, who made a sally, and defeated them. They then returned back, and the Liegeois kept up a stricter watch than before ; and their hatred to the duke of Burgundy was increased.
The English continued their siege of Orleans, and king Charles was in very great distress ; for the major part of his princes and nobles, perceiving that his affairs were miserably bad, and everything going wrong, had quite abandoned him. Nevertheless, he had great hope and confidence in God; and laboured earnestly to procure a peace with the duke of Burgundy, and had sent him many embassies to solicit it; but hitherto no terms could be agreed on between them.
* Bouvines,-in the county of Namur, situated on the Meuse.
CHAPTER LVI.—THE ENGLISH, MARCHING TO REINFORCE THE SIEGE OF ORLEANS, ARE
MET AND ATTACKED BY THE FRENCH, The regent duke of Bedford, while at Paris, had collected about five hundred carts and cars from the borders of Normandy and from the Isle de France, which different merchants were ordered to load with provision, stores and other things, and to have conveyed to the English army before Orleans. When all was ready, the command of this convoy was given to sir John Fascot * grand-master of the duke's household, and with him were, the provost of Paris, named Simon Morbier, the bastard de Thiam knight, bailiff of Senlis, the provost of Melun, and several other officers from the Isle de France and that neighbourhood, accompanied by sixteen hundred combatants and a thousand common men. This armament left Paris on Ash-Wednesday, under the command of sir John Fastolfe, who conducted the convoy and his forces in good order by short marches, until he came near the village of Rouvroy in Beauce, situated between Genville and Orleans.
Many French captains, having long before heard of his coming, were there assembled to wait his arrival, namely, Charlus duke of Bourbon, the two marshals of France, the constable of Scotland and his son, the lords de la Tour +, de Chauvigny, de Graville, sir William d'Albreth, the viscount de Thouars, the bastard d'Orleans, sir James de Chabannes 1, the lord de la Fayette, Poton de Saintrailles, Estienne de Vignolles, surnamed La Hire, sir Theolde de Valperghe, and others of the nobility, having with them from three to four thousand men. The English had been informed of this force being assembled from different garrisons which they had in those parts, and lost no time in forming a square with their carts and carriages, leaving but two openings,-in which square they enclosed themselves, posting their archers as guards to these entrances, and the men at arms hard by to support them. On the strongest side of this enclosure were the merchants, pages, carters, and those incapable of defending themselves, with all their horses.
The English thus situated, waited two hours for the coming of the enemy, who at length arrived with much noise, and drew up out of bowshot in front of the enclosure. It seemed to them, that considering their superior numbers, the state of the convoy, and that there were not more than six hundred real Englishmen, the rest being composed of all nations, they could not escape falling into their hands, and must be speedily conquered. Others, however, had their fears of the contrary happening, for the French captains did not well agree together as to their mode of fighting, for the Scots would combat on foot, and the others on horseback. The lord Charles de Bourbon was there knighted by the lord de la Fayette, with some others. In the mean time, the constable of Scotland, his son and all their men, dismounted and advanced to attack their adversaries, by whom they were received with great courage.
The English archers, under shelter of the carriages, shot so well and stifly that all on horseback within their reach were glad to retreat with their men-at-arms. The constable of Scotland and his men attacked one of the entrances of the enclosure, but they were soon slain on the spot. Among the killed were, sir John Stuart, his son, sir William d'Albreth lord d'Orval, the lord de Châteaubrun, the lord de Mont Pipels, sir John Larigot, the lord de Verduisant, the lord de Divray, the lord de la Greve ||, sir Anthony de Puilly and others, to the amount of six score gentlemen and five hundred common men, the greater part of whom were Scotsmen. The other French captains retreated with their men to the places whence they had come.
The English, on their departure, refreshed themselves, and then marched away in haste Q. If not sir John Fastolfe.
seneschal of Toulouse, and grand-maître of France. He + Bertrand III, lord of la Tour, who, by his marriage was killed at Castillon in 1453. His brother was Anthony with Mary, daughter of Geoffry de Boulogne, lord of de Chabannes, afterwards count of Dammartin. His Montgascon, and heiress of Jane duchess of Berry and father was killed at Azincourt. countess of Boulogne and Auvergne, brought these two Ś Peter de Beauvan, lord of Mont Pipel and Rocheearldoms into his family. His son Bertrand IV. assumed sur-Yon, seneschal of Anjou and Provence. the title of count of Auvergne and Boulogne.
|| Thibaut de Chabot, fourth lord of la Greve, MonJames de Chabannes, lord de la Palice, Chalus, &c. contour, &c.
for their town of Rouvroy, where they halted for the night. On the morrow they departed in handsome array, with their convoy and artillery, armed with every accoutrement becoming warriors, and in a few days arrived before Orleans, very much rejoiced at their good fortune in the late attack from the French, and at having so successfully brought provision to their countrymen.
This battle was ever afterward called the Battle of Herrings, because great part of the convoy consisted of herrings and other articles of food suitable to Lent. King Charles, on hearing the event, was sick at heart, seeing that the state of his affairs was becoming worse and worse. This battle of Rouvroy was fought on the night of the first Sunday in Lent, about three hours after midnight. The English lost only one man of note, called Bresanteau, nephew to sir Simon Morbier, provost of Paris.
On the part of the English were that day made knights, Galloy d'Aunoy, lord d'Orville, the great Raoulin, and Louis de Luxu, a Savoyard. The army of the English might hare consisted of about seventeen hundred combatants of tried courage, without including common men ; and the French, as I have said, were from three to four thousand at least. The lord de Chateaubrun and some others were knighted at the same time with Charles de Bourbon. Only one prisoner was made that day, and he was a Scotsman.
CHAPTER LVII.A MAIDEN NAMED JOAN WAITS ON KING CHARLES AT CHINON,
WHERE HE RESIDED.—THE KING RETAINS HER IN HIS SERVICE. In the course of this year, a young girl called Joan, about twenty years old, and dressed like a man, came to Charles king of France at Chinon. She was born in the town of Droimy, on the borders of Burgundy and Lorraine, not far from Vaucouleurs, and had been for some time hostler and chambermaid to an inn, and had shown much courage in riding horses to water, and in other feats unusual for young girls to do. She was instructed how to act, and sent to the king by sir Robert de Baudricourt *, knight, governor of Vaucouleurs, who supplied her with horses and from four to six men as an escort. She called herself a maiden inspired by the divine grace, and said that she was sent to restore king Charles to his kingdom, whence he had been unjustly driven, and was now reduced to so deplorable a state.
She remained about two months in the king's household, frequently admonishing him to give her men and support, and that she would repulse his enemies, and exalt his name. The king and council in the mean time knew not how to act; for they put no great faith in what she said, considering her as one out of her senses ; for to such noble persons the expressions she used are dangerous to be believed, as well for fear of the anger of the Lord, as for the blasphemous discourses which they may occasion in the world. After some time, however, she was promised men-at-arms and support : a standard was also given her, on which she caused to be painted a representation of our Creator. All her conversation was of God, on which account great numbers of those who heard her had great faith in what she said, and believed her inspired, as she declared herself to be.
She was many times examined by learned clerks, and other prudent persons of rank, to find out her real intentions ; but she kept to her purpose, and always replied, that if the king would believe her, she would restore to him his kingdom. In the mean time, she did several acts which shall be hereafter related, that gained her great renown. When she came first to the king, the duke d’Alençon, the king's marshal, and other captains were with him, for he had held a grand council relative to the siege of Orleans : from Chinon the king went to Poitiers, accompanied by the Maid.
Shortly after, the marshal was ordered to convey provisions and stores, under a strong escort, to the army within Orleans. Joan requested to accompany him, and that armour should be given her, which was done. She then displayed her standard and went to Blois 1 * Robert lord of Baudricourt and Blaise, bailiff of Chaumont, and captain of Vaucouleurs. His son John became a mareschal of France.