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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 272

the act of obeying this order, Louis, Duke of liavaria, was overtaken, and the Dauphin, his three brothers, his sisters Michelle and Katherine, together with the children of the Duke of Purgundy, all of whom Louis was carrying off, were brought back to Paris, and shortly afterwards, Katherine was sent to the convent of Poissy, to be educated, and her wicked mother was imprisoned at Tours. Katherine was an inmate of Poissy when négociations were first opened for her marriage to Henry the Fifth, then Prince of Wales. The success of these négociations was prevented by the distracted state of France, the death of Henry the Fourth, King of England, and the animosity subsisting between the two nations. Put although tbe matter rested for a period, Henry had determined to have the beautiful Katherine for his bride. Accordingly, in 1414, after his unconscionable demand from the crown of France had been made and refused, he agreed to relinquish his claim to the sovereignty of that kingdom ; but, as the price of his forbearance, asked for the provinces of Normandy, Maine, Anjou, Aquitaine, and the half of Provence, for the payment of the arrears of the ransom of King John, amounting to one million two hundred thousand crowns, and for the hand of the Princess Katherine in marriage, with a portion of two million crowns, a sum equal to about five million pounds present money. The Duke of Ferri, in the name of the French King, replied, that Aquitaine should be restored, and six hundred thousand crowns given with his daughter, a greater portion than had ever yet been granted with a princess of France. This conciliatory offer was refused with disdain, and the ambitious Henry, eager to wreath his brow with the laurels of a conqueror, summoned his council, and made known his resolution to recover his inheritance and win his bride by the force of arms. An announcement received with joy by the whole nation, as both the nobles and the people cherished a deadly hatred towards France, and had long and anxiously waited for an opportunity to emulate tho chivalrous deeds of their fathers atCressy and Poictiers. Although Henry obtained from the willing parliament the grant of two tenths and two fifteenths, and the barons and the knights, all anxious to win wealth and renown on the plains of France, undertook to furnish troops according to their ability, the expedition was so gigantic, coin so scarce, the times so unsettled, that he was forced to pawn or sell his crown, his jewels, and, in fact, every valuable that could be found in the vaults of the treasury, and in the cupboards and closets of the royal castles, in order to pay his army. Whilst the army and the fleet were being raised, ambassadors proceeded to France, and assured King Charles of Henry's intention to win the provinces and the hand of Katherine, at the point of his sword. *' If," replied the French King, " such is his purpose, tell him that his barbarous mode of courtship will meet from us the punishment it so justly merits," This answer was only such as, under the circumstances, might have been expected ; but the mad young Dauphin added to it an insult, by sending to Henry a present of a cask, which, on being opened, was found to contain nothing but French tennis balls, and an insulting letter, to the effect that he had better play at his favourite game of racket than embark in a war which he had neither the money, prestige, courage, or energy, to bring to a successful issue. "The insolent varlet !" exclaimed Henry, angrily, on reading the Dauphin's letter. " By tho gospels ! I will return the compliment with English ball, such as shall batter to the ground the walls of Paris !" Every preparation was now ready ; the army had assembled at Southampton, and fifteen hundred sail rode in tbe harbour, all ready to convcv the invading host across the channel Put at the very moment of embarkation, the King was alarmed by the intelligence that a conspiracy was hatching, to take his life, and place the young Earl of March upon the throne. An investigation ensued, which resulted in the condemnation of the Earl of Cambridge, Lord Scroop,

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