M. (Paul) Rapin de Thoyras.

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fon. But juft as the two Dukes were entering the Lilts,
the King, on pretence of avoiding the Effufion of Blood,
but in reality to be rid of thefe two Lords at once, com-
manded them to proceed no farther. Then, though there
could be but one guilty, he banifhed them both, the
Duke of Norfolk for Life, and the Duke of Hereford for
ten Years. The former died fhortly after at Venice, and
the other retired into France (3). This Act of Autho-
rity was no lefs contrary to the Privileges of the Nobi-
lity, than what the King had hitherto done with regard
to the whole Nation in general ; for by the Laws of the
Land, thefe Lords could only be tried by their Peers.
But at that time the Privileges of the People were little

Not long after the Duke of Hereford's departure, his
Father, the Duke oILancaf.cr, died ("+) little lamented by
the People, and ftill lefs by the King, who could not
help fearing him. By the Death of this Prince, his Ho-
nours and Effaces, which were very confiderable, fell to
the Duke of Hereford his Son, to whom before his de-
parture, the King had remitted four Years of his Banifh-
ment. Moreover, he had granted him Letters Patent,
impowering him, though in Exile, to take polleflion by
his Attorney of his Fees, that fhould happen to fall to
him in his Abfence, with a fufpenfion of Homage till his
return (5). Notwithstanding immediately after the death
of the Duke his Father, the King, by a Sentence no lefs
unjult than the former, decreed, that his Banifhment fhould
be perpetual, and confifcated all hi> Eftate.

By fuch Ads of defpotick Power, the Laws and Li-
berties of England were in a deplorable ftate. The
Dukes of Lancajhr and Gloeejler, and the Earl of Arun-
del beina dead, JVaiwick fent away, the Archbifhop of
Canterbury, the Dukes of Hereford and Norfolk in Exile,
there was fcarce a Man in the Kingdom able to oppofe
the Arbitrary Power ufurped by the King. The Duke
of York alone, the King's Uncle, might have defended
the Nation's Interefts. But as he loved his eafe, he was
no proper Perfon to engage in fuch an Undertaking.
Richard feeing himfelf therefore above all reftraint, gave
himfelf up to a foft and effeminate Life, regardlefs of the
Good of the Publick. Mean time, his Minifters, little
qualified for their Pofts, fuffered their Affairs to decay,
and faw without any concern, the Englijh Nation fall into
the utmoft contempt. The Scots frequently broke the
Truce (6), by Incurfions upon the Borders, being very
fure, the Court of England was far from thinking of re-
venging their Infults. The Englijh PolfciTtons in France
were almoft reduced to nothing, and the Places which
might one day have ferved to repair thefe LolTes, were
fold without any neceffity. The Merchant Ships were
daily plundered by the Corfairs of France and the Low-
Countries, without any means ufed to protect the Trade.
Amidlt thefe diforders, the Minifters, of whom the Earl
of JViltJhire was the chief, fought only to augment the
King's Revenues, by Borrowings, new Taxes, and ftill
lefs legal Ways. Pretences were no longer fought to
demand Subfidies ; the Minifters whole Bufrnefs was only
to find fpeedy and effectual means to extort Money from
the People, to whom the demanding it was thought to be
too great an Honour. At length, having pradfifed divers
Expedients, as unjuft as extraordinary, to fupply the
King's prodigious Expences (7), and fatisfy his Minifters

Avarice, a Method was ufed which could not fail of pro- 1398,
curing large Sums. As the late Parliament had revetfed
the Pardon granted in 1386, to the Duke of G'oce/lers
Adherents, Accufatrons were brought againft fuch as had
then taken Arms in favour of that Prince. By the Judg- Tbe Efiatet
merits given upon thtfe Accufation?, feventeen Counties "(/"■""'"■
were condemned as guilty of Trsafon, and the Efbtes„^^/„
of all the Inhabitants adjudged to the King. In this Ex-'l'lE*g-
tremity, the richer fort ot Gentlemen and Burgefles were pj all '" s :
forced, in order to avoid the foizureof their Eftates, to Lambtthl
give blank Obligations, which the King caufed to be
filled with what Sums he was pleafed to exact. More-
over, by what was inferted in thefe Notes, which were
termed Ragmans (8), every Perfon was bound, under Aa. Pub.
great Penalties, to fupport the Statutes of the Shrewsbury vl H-p-'°9>
Parliament, and all the fuhfequent Acts ; that is to fay,
they entirely threw themfelves upon the King's Mercv (9).
It was impndible that a Government fo tyrannical,
fhould not draw the hatted of the Nation upon the
Prince and his Inflruments. It was alfo very vilible, that
thefe OppreiTir.ns kindled in the hearts of the People, an
ardent defrre of freeing themfelves from them, infomuch
that the leaft Spark was capable of producing a fatal Com-

Whilft England was expofed to all thefe Calamities, Rebellion m
the Irijh, contemning the fmall number of Troops left by l 'f 3ni -
Richard in their Country, took up Arms with one Con- March"'
fent. Roger Mortimer Earl of March, Governor of Ire- pin. '
land, oppofrng the Rebels, was flain in the firft Battle. Walf ' n §.
This Prince, who was declared by an Act of Parliament
preemptive Heir of the Crown, Ielt two Sons, Edmund
and Roger, the eldeft of whom fucceeded him in his Ho-
nour of Earl of March, and died without Iflue, as well
as Roger his Brother. But the Marriage of Ann their
Sifter with the Duke of York's fecond Son, proved a fer-
tile fource of Troubles, which long afflicted the King-

Richard receiving the News of the Irijh Revolt, re- rl ' K*z
folved to go in Perfon and chaftife the Rebels, being in a^'hT''^'
terrible Rage, that fuch a pitiful and wretched People Waifing. '
fhould dare to contemn his Power, at a time when he Aa - Pub-
found no oppofrtion in England. Purfuant to this Refo- J/J^f" 1% '
lution, he levied a numerous Army, which furnifhed him great ■Sum.
with a frefh occafron to exact great Sums from his Sub-
jects ( 1 o), whereby he confiderably increafed the hatred
already entertained againft him.

When he was ready to imbark, fome Sufpicions in- 1399.
ftilled into him, of the Earl of Northumberland, Governor <rbe E *'l of
of the northern Counties, moved him to fend that Earl a ^"i"^ 1 ",*
pofitive Order to come and join him without delay. But chrcd a
the Earl excufing himfelf, on account that his Prefence 7V "''^.
was abfolutely neceflary in thole Parts, the King, without ( r '" n '" T -
further Examination, pronounced him a Traitor (11), and
ordered all his Eftate to be feized. Then leaving the Re- The King
gency of the Kingdom to the Duke of York his Uncle, ™r* ,be
he fet fail, and arrived May the 31ft at Waterford, from y^ Rc .
whence he marched to Dublin. He was attended by the v-t.
Sons of the Duke of Lancafter, by his third Wife, and Walfin fr
by thofe of the late Duke ot Gloeejler, whom he carried
like Hoftages; and had taken with him the belt part of
his Jewels, as if he had forefeen he fhould never more
return to his Palace. He made at firft fome Progrefs
againft the Rebels, and in feveral Encounters, gave Marks
of Valour, which caufed a belief, that if hitherto he had
fhewn no great Inclination for War, it was not to be
afcribed fo much to a want ot Courage, as to a bad Edu-

But whilft his Vanity was flattered with the Ad van- Confyiracy in
tages he gained over the Irijh, a Confpiracy was forming ^b' 311 "'*
in England to deprive him of the Crown. Under an
arbitrary Government, fuch as Richard's, there muft
needs be great numbers of Male-contents. Some Perfons
indeed find their account in the abfolute Power of the

(1) The Wcrd; were, That the King notwithflanding his fair Countenances, and great Oaths, did yet intend to opprefs the Duke of Lar.cn/ler, and the
two Dukes of Albemarle and Exeter, viz. Edward Planlagenet, and John de Holland. Citron's Abridg. p. 371. Placita C:nn. in Pari. 21. Ric. II, This
Accufation again!! the Duke of Nor/elk, was brought in by the Duke of Hereford, on Jan. 30, while the Parliament was fitting.

(2) F art, . . - , nd others, who lay that the Duke of Norfolk accufed the Duke of Hereford of having fpoken ill of the King, were miftaken.
See the A is of Parliament 21 Ric. II. Rapin. C-Jlier js likewife guilty of this Error, p. 603. Vol. I.

(3) Whei e he was nobly received by the King of France, and found fuch favour in that Court that he was offered in Marriage, the only Daughter of the
Duke of Berri, the laid King's Uncle. But King Richard having notice thereof, ufed means to Hop the Profccution of that Treaty. Froijfan. 1. 4,
c. 45, 46.

(4) 7^" >f Gaunt Dike of L in, i/lcr, d'ed about Feb. 2. and was buried in St. Paul's. Cathedral, where his Monument was to be feen till the great Fire,
See a Print of it in Sandjord's GeJieal Hiji. p. 255.

(;;) Or fin 1 m derate Fine. "'•••'';• p. 357.

(6) This year, on 0t~foherz6, Commiflioners from both Nations met at Haudenjlanh, on the Borders of the two Kingdo-ns, to take care of the Releafe
and Exchange of Prifoners, taken fince the Truce of Leulingbam, in 1389; and to regulate all Affairs relating to the Borders. See Ryrnrr'tFcrd. Tom.

VIII. p. 54^ &«■ ._. . ,

(-) Among other Expedients, they borrowed very large Sums of the Abbies, Towns, and Men ot Eftates in the Kingdom, giving them Securities for
their being repaid again ; which was never done. See Rymer's Feed. Tom. VIII. p. 9.

(5) They were afterwards burnt by order of Henry IV. Rymcr's FarJ. Tom. VIII. p. 109.

(q) Among other Grievances, the Sheriffs of all the Counties throughout the Kingdom, were forced to take an unuuial Oath, viz. That they w< uld obey
all the King's Commaads, whether under the Broad-Seal, Privy-Seal, or Signet ; and if they knew any Perfon in their rtfpecVive Bailiwicks, that had fpeke
any thing to the Scandal or Difgrace of the King, they Ihuuld imprit'rn them, of what Degree or Condition bevel they were. rVulfmg. Yp.dig. p. 553.

(jo) '2. Walfingbam fays, that he extorted Money from his Subject ; made them furniih him with Horlcs, Carriages, and Victuals, for his Expedition,
without paying any thing, which rendered him more odious than ever, p. 356,

(11; And raufcd him "to be baniihed, F'fjjatt, 1, 4. c, 47,

7 Prince,

Book X.








Par// ,t



tfe 0/








1 c


ffr repairs

fa Ktcnj.'nt*,
tfl^ imbarks.


J. 4. c. 49.


tvbere be

6ooco Men,

Tic XtgsHf
Jn vain trie!
to prevent a

general R£-


T ; Ccurcit
retire 11 if.


declares ti-
the Duke-

The Pule
fulihjhes a

Art. l'u It

Prince, but they are far from being the Majority. So,
though a King of this Character is commonly furround-
ed with a crowd of Ptattercrs, who endeavour to perfuade
him, that the People bear his Yoke patiently ; if he lias
any Knowledge of the World, he ought to confider,
there is no preferving the Power acquired by force, but
by the fame way it was ufurped. And if he is fo im-
politick, as to confide in Subjects he has violently op-
preffed, in vain does he expect from them a Fidelity,
which fcrves only to increafe their Mifery. This is what
Richard did not fail to experience. By an imprudent
Security, he had left his Kingdom, and carried all his
Forces into Ireland, at a time when the People's hatred
of him was at the higheft ; wherein he committed a capital
Error, which his Enemies failed not to improve. lie
was fcarce gone for Ireland, with almoft all the Lords
his Creatures, but the Male-contents in England began
to think of means to dethrone him. To that end, after
' feveral Conferences together, they fent Word to the Aich-
bifhop of Canterbury, who, fince his Banifhmcnt, was
retired into France, " That all England was ready to
" rife, and nothing was wanting but a Leader of Di-
" ftindtion to t head the Male-contents. That upon ma-
" ture Deliberation, they thought none fo piopcr as the
" Duke of Hereford, for whom the People had a great
" Efteem and Affection, and who moreover had a very
" plaufible Pretence to take up Arms, to demand Satis-
" faction for the Injuries he had fuftered : That if the
" Duke would repair into England, they engaged to
" aflift him to the utmoft of their Power ; and in the
" prefent difpofition of the Nation, there was no doubt,
" but they would join thofe that fhould undertake to
" free them from the Oppreflion they endured." The
Archbifhop, who was himfelf extremely incenfed againft
the King, communicating this Letter to the Duke, that
Prince rcfolved to lay hold of the Juncture, to try what
Fortune would do in his favour. However, as he was
fenfible he could not carry on this Enterpiize by him-
felf, he took care fo to manage it, that he might eafily
defift, in cafe things were not difpoled as he was made
to expect. Purfuant to this Resolution, he privately re-
paired into Bretcgne, where he fitted out three Ships, and
embarked in Company with the Archbifhop of Canter-
bury (1), and about fourfcore Men, among whom there
were but fixteen or eighteen Lances (2). With this final 1
Force he fet fail, and hovered fome time about the Coafl
of England, now in one Place, then in another, with-
out landing any where. His defign was to fee what Effect
his Approach would have among the People, and to en-
gage the Englijl) openly to declare for him, in a belief
that he was attended with greater Force. This Trial
fucceeded beyond expectation. When it was known
that he was on the Coaft, the People rife in feveral Parts,
not confidering whether the Aid which appeared was fuf-
ficient to protect them ; and this readinefs determined the
Duke to pufh his Enterprize farther. In the beginning of
"July (3), he landed at Ravcnfpur in York/hire, where the
Earl of Northumberland and Henry Percy his Son (4) im-
mediately joined him with fome Troops. After this Junc-
tion, the concourfe of People, flocking in Crowds to lift
under his Banners, was fo great, that in a few days his
Army was threefcore thoufand ftrong. So eager were the
Nobles and People to put themfclvcs under the Protection
of a Prince, who flood himfelf in fo great need of their

As foon as the Duke of York, Regent of the Kingdom,
heard of the Duke's Landing, he called a Council (5) to
confider of the neceffary Meafures on this occafion. But
the hourly News of the increafe of the Duke's Forces,
and the Difpofition of the Kingdom, quickly made the
Counfellors, among whom there were few Perfons of
Abilities, defpair of being able to remedy the Evil. In this
perplexity, they committed a capital Fault, in refolving
to quit London and retire to St. Albans. This imprudent
Step was extremelv prejudicial to the King's Affairs. The
Lords of the Council were no fooner departed from Lon-
don, but the Citizens, no longer reftrained by thePrcfence
of thofe who reprefented the King's Perfon, declared for
the Duke, and by their Example, diew in fuch Towns,
as would not yet have ventured to proceed fo far.

Mean time the Duke, who, at his Arrival in England,
had taken the Title of Duke of Lancajler, publifhed a
Manifefto, letting forth, without (Viewing he had any

to obtain Satisfaction for all the Injuftlcc* done him. This 1599.
Manifefto produced fo great an Effect, that when the "
Regent would have iflued out CommiiTions to levy Troops, ""'V'.' '
he hardly found any willing to accept them. Every one
faid publickly, he did not care to oppofe the lawful Prc-
tenfions of a Prince fo unjuftly opprefled. This Refufal 72 '"" " ■
convincing the Earl of Wdtjhire, and the reft of the Mini-^,.' n '; ; "Jj

viii. p. S4. Defign upon the Ciown, that he had taken Arms purely

of Arundzl, the Lord Cobham, Sir Thmas ErpingtMl, and Sir Tb'.mas Ramf.

ftry, that inftead of being able to fupport their Authority,* 1
they ran the hazard of feeing themfclvcs facrificed to the' ' m *
publick Hatred, they deferted the Duke of York and re- w j"
tired to Brijlol Cattle. After the Flight of the Counfellors,
the Regent perceiving there was no ftemming the Tor-
rent, threw up the caie of the publick Affair?, and with-
drew to his own Houfe, leaving the Kingdom like a
Ship expofed to the Winds and Waves, without Pilot or
Mariners. All the other Lords, who had as yet remained
Neuter, in order to join the ftrongeft Party, finding the
King's Intercft abandoned, no longer deferred openly de-
claring for the Duke.

Mean while, the Duke improving thefe Advantages, 7 7 ' Dukt
marched with all fpeed to London, where the Citizens had j"
invited him. He was triumphantly received in that noble,,' ,
City, with all the Demonftrations of Zeal and Affection,
which could be given by a People extremely incenfed K :;a,t -
againft their Sovereign, and confidering themfclvcs as"" 5 °"
delivered from Tyranny. But how pleating foever the
Honours he received from the Londoners might be, he
flaid no longer than was neceffary to fecure their Allcci-
ar.ee; after which he marched directly towards Brijhl.
Upon his arrival, the Gates being opened to him with
joy, he commanded the Caftle to be aflaultcd, where
the Counfellors were retired. The Siege was pufhed fo*. '"*"
vigoroufly, that in four days the Befieged were forced ^du.'^u
to furrender at Difcretion. The People's Fury againft »••
the Earl of Wiltjhire and his Companions was lb violent, ][' ' ■
that the Duke thought he could not refufe them the Sa- ,
tisfaction to fee thefe odious Minifters facrificed to their 1 1.
Vengeance. So without confidering the Power he afi'um-
ed was ftill more illegal than the King's Ufurpations, he
ordered the Earl of IViltJlnre to be beheaded, with fome
others of the Council (6), to fatisfy the People who loud-
ly called for their Death. The happy Succefs of this
Expedition made the whole Kingdom embrace the Duke's
Party, and fhortly after he had the Satisfaiti ,11 to fee his
Uncle the Duke of York come and affift him with his

Whilft thefe things were tranfadting in England, Jtiiyhi
Richard was in Ireland in a perfect fecurity. The con- jcim'fLm
trary Winds which continued to blow above three Weeks, tearmgjhm
hindered his receiving anv News. When he heard of the K ' ,; ^ nd -
Duke of Lancajlcrs Defcent, he imprifoned his Brothers,
with the Duke of Glocejlers Sons, and ref jived to go im-
mediately into England, and fight his Enemy. But the a ' < ^ 5 ™ *"
Duke of Albemarle advifed him to a ftay few days, to El 'i I j_
have time to prepare Ships to tranfport all his Forces at
once. He took this fatal Advice, which compleated his
Ruin, fines every Moment is precious at fuch a juncture.
And indeed, it was during that time that London declared
for the Duke, which perhaps would not have been, had
the King been known to be in England, with a Refolution
vigoroufly to oppofe the Defigns of his Enemies. Richard ^ ,r "' '*•
being determined to ftay fome days longer in Ireland, fent jj n,urv «
the Karl of Salisbury before, to levy Troops in Wales y t\ , 7i ft.
affuring him he would quickly follow him (7). The
Earl ufed fuch Expedition, that in a few davs he afiem-
bled an Army of forty thoufand Men, the IVcljh and
Che/hire Men zealouflv taking Arms tor the King. If
Richard had arrived with his Forces by the time he had
promifed, he might at leaft have had the Satisfaction, of
trying the fortune of a Battle in Defence of his Crown
But the Wind return
teen days longer i
to make fo ftiort a
being fpread in the Earl of Salisbury's Army, that the
King was dead in Ireland, the Troops would have dif-
banded themfelves. It was with great difficulty the tit lEarltf
Earl prevailed with them to ftay a tew days, in ordei
to have certain News of the King. This Delay being tbtrUunu
expired, and Richard not appearing, the Weljb and
Che/hire Men deferted their Colours, and retired to their

Richard landed a few days after (8), and as he knew n ' K "g

nothing of the Earl of Salisbury's Army being difpei fed, ^'^'l™

marched to Caermarthen in hopes to meet tlicm. But -what Cemrfi

to rate.

Sec. mifal. W "I" n &
Fro Hart.
1. 4. c. 51.

; or a .Battle in ueience 01 nis v^rown.
turning to the Eaft, detained him eigh- 7T ' *"2 <'
in Ire/and, and would not permit him ''""J* *
Paftage. During that time a Rumour WmU.

(1) And Thomas Fitx-A'an, Son and Heir of the late Ear!

|i) Only Itfteen Lances, fays Waljinctam. Ibid.

(3) About 7..'v4. Ibid.

(4) With Ralph Ntntil, Earl of Wefimortland. Ibid. And alio the Lords Will
(,-) Confiding ot Edmund Stafford, Bilhop f Cbiebejltr, the Chancellor; William i,

William Bajra, Sir Henry Crtne, and Sir Jthn Huffel. Walfingbam, p. 358.

,'(,; Sir Jib,, Hujhy, anil Sir Henry Grer.e. Sir William Begot ef.jped into Inland. Ib:d.
(7) Within lix Days at farther}.
(8) At MUford-baven •, with the Dates of Albemarle, Exeter and Surrey; the Bifhops of London, Exeter, and CorliJIt. H'alfirgbam, t. j;3


Rofs, Darey, and Beaumont. Tyrre!, p. 996.
ope. Earl of Wilt/hire, the Trcafarer ; a„J Sir John Bujhj,



The II I S TO R T of E N G L A N D.


1399. when he heard that he had loft that Refuge, and all the
Nobility had declared againft him, that his Minifters were
beheaded at Bri/lol, and the People aidently efpoufed the
Duke of Lancajlcr's Quarrel, he knew not what Courfe
to take, all that were propofed appearing equally dange-
rous. The Officers and Soldiers would have had him put
himfelf at their head, and give his Enemy Battle. They
promifed to fpill the laft drop of their Blood in his De-
fence, and infpired him with hopes that his Army would
daily increafe in hie. March, by the junction of thofe, who
through Force, or the belief of his Death, had deferted
him. Some advifed him to return, and fortify himfelf in
Ireland. Others were of opinion, that he fhould fly for
Refuge into France, to the King his Father-in-law, till a
more favourable Seafon afforded him an opportunity to return
to his Dominions. Amidft thefeU.nceitainties, the unfor-
tunate King, incapable of cbukng the bell Advice, and
having none about him bat fuel) as wanted Courage or
Capacity, could not come to any Rcfjlurion. However
as he diftrufted every Body, he could not long remain in
■ to a Situation which feemed to him fo very dangerous. On
Conway a f Llc Jdcn , without advifing with any Perfon, he privately
Walling, withdrew from his Army in the Night, and fhut himfelf
up in Comvay Cafilc, which was deemed impregnable, but
at that time unprovided of all things. He had no fooner
difappeared, but the Lord Thomas Percy, Earl aUVorceJler,
Mailer of the Hcmfhold, broke his White-Staff ( 1 ) before
the King's Domefticks, and went to meet the Duke of
Lancajier, who was advancing towards Chejler at the
head of his Army.
Tie v. ■• Richard finding himfelf almoft alone in the Caftle he

pripefa an na j chofen for his Sanctuary, without any profpect of be-
■'" " : -'- J - incr ; ..b!e to defend himfelf,' was afiaid, ii he attempted to

tllitl, O 11/- 11*1

efcapc, of falling into the hands of an enraged Feople,
who gave him but too many Proofs of their Hatred. In
this extremity, he faw no other Remedy but to throw
himfelf upon the Generofity of his Enemy. He fent him
word by one of his Attendants, that he was ready to fub-
mit to what Terms he himfelf fhould judge reafonabje, and
defired him to (end fome Perfon to confer with him.
The Duke immediately difpatched the Archbiinop of
Canterbury and the Earl of Northumberland, buih iworn
'■' fi'>'° Enemies of the King (2), to know his Intentions. _ In the
J ' fhort Conference with thefe Deputies, Richard offered, if

Waling. his Life were fecured, with an honourable Pention for him-
felf and eight Perfons (3) he fhould name, to refign his
Crown, and be content to lead the Reiidue of his Days
hke a private Perfon. The Deputies giving him hopes
his Offer would be accepted, he defired to center with
7..-TY - : the Duke himfelf, To that purpoie he went to Flint,
"^ not above ten Miles from Chejler, whe:e the Duke was
now arrived. Next day the Duke being come to Flint,
went to the King, who faid to him with a cheartul
eh™. Countenance: " Coufm of Lancajier, you are welcome."
Lambeth. Then the Duke thrice bowing to the Ground, replied,
" My Lord the King, I am come fooner than you ap-
" pointed me, becaufe the common Fame of your People
" is, that you have for this one and twenty Years go-
" verned very ill, and rigoroufly, with which they are not

Online LibraryM. (Paul) Rapin de ThoyrasThe history of England : written in French (Volume 1) → online text (page 199 of 360)