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FRANCIS LANCELOTT, ESQ. Queens of England. Vol.1.


Sir John Froissart's Chronicles of England, France, Spain and the Ajoining Countries from the latter part of the reign of Edward II to the coronation of Henry IV in 12 volumes 

Chronicles of Enguerrand De Monstrelet (Sir John Froissart's Chronicles continuation) in 13 volumes 

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Queens of England. Vol.1.
page 114

the Count of Flanders paid a short visit to the Court of England, and did homage to Henry for a pension of five hundred marks, when, being loaded with rich gifts from the King, he returned to his own possessions, and waged an unsuccessful war against the Emperor of Germany. In this strife, the Count of Toulouse supported the cause of the Emperor, and to revenge an old injury, marched against the Count of Provence with such success, that he doubtless would have made himself master of Provence, but for the intercession of King Henry, who, at the pressing instance of his consort, wrote several friendly epistles to the Emperor, on behalf of Count Raymond, his father-in-law. On the fifth of October the Queen gave birth to a daughter, who was named Margaret, after her aunt, the Queen of Franee. In 1241, Peter, Count of Savoy, on whom Henry bestowed the Earldom of Richmond, and Boniface, Bishop-elect of Basil, both uncles to the Queen, came to England to better their fortunes ; and Henry, influenced by the entreaties of his beloved Eleanora, welcomed them with such splendour, that he exhausted his treasury, and to disburse the expenses of his profusion and dishonest liberality, forced the Jews to pay him twenty thousand marks, almost two hundred thousand pounds present money, under penalty of banishment, or perpetual imprisonment. So great was the influence of Queen Eleanora over her royal lord, that for a period, Henry permitted the Earl of Kichmond to fully control aU church and state matters, and bestowed on him that part of London known as the Savoy, besides other princely presents. Nor was the plastic-minded King unmindful of the interests of Boniface, St. Edmund, Archbishop of Canterbury, having a few months previously breathed his last. Henry by force and stratagem procured the election of Boniface to the valuable vacant see. Queen Eleanora took great interest in her uncle's election. She gained over the Pope by writing to him with her own hands a humble and complimentary letter, and prevailed on Henry to draw up a paper to be signed by all the bishops and abbots, commending the voung, inexperienced Bishop of Basil as a worthy candidate for the primacy. By these and other coercive measures, the Queen obtained for her uncle the Archbishopric of Canterbury. On the first of December, the pangs of parturition closed the life of King Henry's sister, the Empress Isabella ; and about the same time, Eleanora of Brittany, sister of Arthur of Brittany, who fell a victim to the treachery of his uncle, King John, died of dejection, after a captivity of more than forty years in Bristol Castle. She was buried m the church of Ambresbury, to the nunnery of which she gave the manor of Milkesham. After many entreaties, Isabella of Angoulême* prevailed upon her son, King Henry, to assist the Count de la Marche, her second husband, in his unjust war against the pious St. Louis. With this view, the English King equipped a fleet with military stores, and thirty casks of money, with which he sailed from Portsmouth, in May, 1242, accompanied by his beloved Queen, his brother, Earl Richard, and other nobles. The expedition reached the continent in safety, but as Henry lacked the skill, courage, and energy of a warrior, he was defeated in every encounter. Many of his warlike nobles, disgusted at his weakness and cowardice, forsook him and returned home, and he at length fled with his queen to Bourdeaux, where Eleanora gave birth to a daughter, who WHS named Beatrice, after the Countess of Provence. Regardless of the heavy loss he had sustained at the disastrous battle of Taillenbourg, Henry, after signing a truce for five years, on terms as discreditable to himself as they were honourable to the noble-minded King of France, remained at Bourdeaux for several months, where he and his consort recklessly passed the time in feasting and pageantry, and when at length they returned to England, on their landing at Portsmouth, in September, 1243, orders were * See the preceding Memoirs.

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