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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 130

she was not without some reason detested, observed the royal barge in the Thames, and instantly rushed to the bridge, pelting her in eager earnestness with stones, dirt, rotten eggs, and other vile muck ; at the same time shouting, " There goes that wicked woman ! she is no queen, but an old witch! drown the hag! drown her!" This attack was so fierce and formidable, that Eleanora certainly would have been drowned, had she not, after great difficulty, escaped the fury of the rioters, by hastening back to the Tower ; where, however, she deemed herself in such danger that, when night closed in, she sought shelter in the episcopal palace near St. Paul's, whence she privately fled to Windsor Castle, which was strongly garrisoned by Prince Edward and hisfighting men. Neither the King nor Prince Edward ever forgave the Londoners for this insult upon the Queen, which, indeed, hurried forward the civil war. When the barons had consented to refer their grievances to the arbitration of the Erench King, Henry took Eleanora and her family to the court of France, where ho left them in security in October, 1264, and himself returned to England, where he braved the storm of rebellion with more than his characteristic courage and energy. The decision of St. Louis, although a just one, produced no satisfactory result. The barons and the royalists flew to arms, and "there was now a taking of towns and prisoners on all hands." The baronial party, supported by the church, gave a religious character to the war, and urged the nation to take up arms in the cause of religion and righteousness. Solemn service was performed in the battle-field before commencing action. The students of Oxford, numbering fifteen thousand, fought for the barons at Northampton, where, on the third of April, they boldly advanced, under a banner of their own, against the King, and annoyed him more than the rest of the barons. On gaining the victory—a most decisive one—Henry was eager to inflict a severe vengeance on them, but his councillors, in alarm, reminded hira "that most of these turbulent students were sons of the great men of the land, and many of them his own adherents' heirs, who had been excited to opposition by the popular clamour for liberty, and if he slew them, their blood would be terribly revenged, for even the nobles who now fought in his cause, would then take up arms against him." The country now bristled with arms, and was lit up with the flame of civil war. Victory favoured the royal cause, and Henry exercised a clemency and humanity to the vanquished, that does honour to his heart. At the castle of Tunbridge, having made prisoner the wife of his deadly foe, the Duke of Gloucester, he immediately released her, again remarking, " that he did not war against ladies." Whilst encamped within six miles of the royal army, near Lewes, in Sussex, the barons, disheartened by repeated defeats, sued for peace, offering the King thirty thousand marks in consideration of the damages done by them in the kingdom, provided he would at the same time confirm the provisions of Oxford. But Prince Edward, animated by an eager desire to revenge the insults offered to Eleanora, his mother, by the rabble of London, replied by a letter of defiance; whilst the King told them that it was not he, but they, that had caused the war and ruin which had befallen the nation ; that their acts and professions did not agree, and therefore he defied them as rebels and traitors. On receiving these replies, Leicester and his friends renounced their aUegiance, and after being formally absolved of their sins by the Bishop of Chichester, and each man wearing a white cross on his breast and back, to shew that he fought for justice, boldly marched against the royalists. The battle of Lewes, fought the fourteenth of May, 1264, was lost through the ardent desire of Prince Henry to revenge the insults which the Londoners had offered his mother. Having speedily broken the ranks of the disloyal citizens, who to the number of fifteen thousand had mustered under the banner of the rebel Leicester, the head

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