Chronicles of Froissart
knew well how Clement his adversary had done in like wise in the realm of France, and doth daily, and they called the Urbanists in their faith and belief to be but dogs. So this Urban saw well that the Clementines would condemn and destroy him if they might, and he saw well he could not more grieve the Frenchmen than by the Englishmen: but first he saw well he must find the means to gather together great riches ; for he knew well the nobles of England, for all his absolutions, would not ride forth in war without money, for men of war live not by pardons, nor they set not much thereby but in the article of death. Then he determined beside these bulls to send into England to the prelates, that they should ordain a full dime on the churches, the noblemen and men of war thereof to be paid their wages without grieving of any part of the king's treasure or of the commonty of the realm : the which thing the pope thought the barons and knights o£ England gladly would hearken unto. Then he caused to be written and engrossed bulls, as well to the king and his uncles as to the prelates of England, of plain absolution from pain and sin; and beside that, he granted to the king and to his uncles a plain dime to be taken and levied throughout all England, so that sir Henry Spenser, bishop of Norwich, should be chief captain of all the men of war ; because the goods came from the Church, therefore the pope would that one of the Church should be chief governour, and to the intent that the churches and commons of the realm should the better believe the matter. And beside that, because he knew the realm of Spain contrary to his opinion and somewhat allied with the French king, he advised' that with part of the same gold and silver that should be gathered in the realm of England, that the duke of Lancaster, who reputed himself king of Castile by the right of his wife, that he in like wise should make another army into Castile; and also if the duke of Lancaster take on him the said viage, then the pope said he would grant to the king of Portugal, who made new war with king John of Castile, for king Francis was dead, a plain dime throughout all Portugal. Thus pope Urban ordained all his business, and sent a thirty bulls into
1 ' Il s'avisa,' 'he planned.'
England, the which were received with great joy. Then the prelates in their jurisdictions began to preach this voyage in manner of a croisey, whereby the people of England, who lightly believed, gave thereto great faith, and believed verily that they could not go to Paradises if they died that year without they gave somewhat in pure alms. Toward this war at London and in the diocese there was gathered a tun-full of gold and silver, and according to the pope's bulls he that most gave most pardon obtained ; and whosoever died in that season and gave his goods to these pardons, was clean assoiled from pain and from sin ; and according to the tenour of the bulls happy was he that died in that season, for to have so noble absolution. Thus they gathered money all the winter and Lent season, what by the pardons and by the dimes, that as it was said it drew to the sum of twenty-five hundred thousand franks.
How the bishop of Norwich and the Englishmen issued out of England to run and to make war against all those that held with pope Clement.
WHEN the king of England, his uncles and council understood what money was gathered, they were right joyous and said how they had money enough to make war against two realms, that was to say, against France and Spain. To go into Spain in the name of the pope and of the prelates of England with the duke of Lancaster was ordained the bishop of London called Thomas, brother to the earl of Devonshire, to be chief captain, and with him two thousand spears and four thousand archers, and they to have half of the money thus gathered. But it was ordained that they should not so soon depart out of England as the bishop of Norwich, because that army should arrive at Calais and so to enter into France ; and they wist not what should fall thereby, nor whether the French king would raise
1 `Thought that they could not issue from the year with honour nor ever enter paradise,' etc. The words 'in pure alms' belong properly to the next sentence.