Page 218

Page 218 (Chronicles of Froissart)



page 218


When sir Silvester Bude, who was in the country, heard how his men had lost the bourage of Saint Peter and the castle Angelo, he was right sore displeased and studied how to be revenged of the Romans. It was shewed him by his spies how on a day the Romans and the noblest men of the city of Rome should assemble together in council in the Capitol. As soon as he knew that, he assembled together a certain number and rode forth by covert ways secretly, and so came to Rome in the evening and entered in at the gate of Naples. When these Bretons were within, they took the straight way to the Capitol, and came thither as the council of Rome were issued out of the chamber. Then the Bretons couched their spears and ran in among them, and slew and beat down a great number of the most notablest of the city. There was slain a six bannerets and a two hundred of other rich persons, and a great number hurt. And when these Bretons had done their enterprise, they withdrew them against night, and then it began to be late, so that they were not pursued, what for the night and for the sudden fray that they were in, for they wist not what to do but to take heed of their friends that were sore hurt. So they passed that night in great distress and sorrow of heart, and so buried the dead and dressed the hurt. And in the morning the Romans advised themselves of a great cruelty, for the poor clerks that were in Rome and were in no fault, they slew and hurt of them more than three hundred, and specially Bretons that fell in their hands there was no mercy. Thus went the matters in Rome by reason of the state of the popes, and daily they bought it dear, such as were without fault. In the mean season that Clement and his cardinals lay thus at Fondes, the queen of Naples came thither to see him, for she did put herself under the obeisance of pope Clement. This queen had been long in purpose to put the realm of Sicily, whereof she was lady, and the county of Provence, which dependeth of the same realm, into the hands of the pope, to do with them at his pleasure and to give them to some high prince of the realm of France, being of such puissance to keep them against such as she hated deadly, who were descended out of the realm of Hungary. And when the queen of Naples was come to Fondes, she humbled herself lowly to pope Clement and was confessed of him and discovered to him all the secrets of her heart, and said ` Holy father, I hold divers noble heritages, as the realm of Naples, the realm of Sicily, Puylle,1 Calabre, and the county of Provence ; and it is of truth that king Louis of Sicily, duke of Puylle and Calabre, my father, while he lived knowledged all these lands to hold of the Church, and on his death-bed he took me by the hand and said : "Ah, fair daughter, ye are inheritor of many a rich country, and I am sure many great lords will seek to have you in marriage because of the fair heritage that ye have. Therefore, daughter, I would ye should use you after my counsel, as to marry yourself to so high a prince that may be puissant to keep and maintain you and your heritage in rest and peace. And if it so fortune that ye have none heirs, then deliver all your lands into the hands of the pope then being alive ; for king Robert my father at the hour of his death gave me in like charge. Therefore, fair daughter, I charge you and discharge me." And then I promised him on my faith in the presence of all them that were in his chamber that I should accomplish his last desire. And, holy father, so it was that after his decease by the consent of all the nobles of Sicily and Naples I was married to Andrew of Hungary, brother to king Louis of Hungary, by whom I had no issue, for he died young at Aix in Provence : and after his decease I was married again to the prince of Tarent, who was called Charles, and by him I had a daughter. Then the king of Hungary, for the displeasure that he had for Andrew his brother, my first husband, went and made war against my husband Charles of Tarent and took from him Puylle and Calabre, and took him in battle and led him to



Page 218 (Chronicles of Froissart)