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Page 145 (Chronicles of Froissart)

page 145

`Nay, I warrant you it is not for our profit, for the archpriest is so great a brawler that if he come to us he will but jangle, and in the mean time imagine our strength and aview our number,' the which peradventure shall turn more to our prejudice than advantage : therefore I have no haste to speak with him.' Then Faucon the herald went to the other herald, whereas he tarried under a hedge, and excused the captal so wisely that he was well content, and then he went to the archpriest and shewed him all, as Faucon had said. Thus the Frenchmen and Navarrois had knowledge each of other by the report of the two heralds, and apparelled themselves each to meet other. And when the captal had heard by Faucon what number the Frenchmen were, then incontinent he sent certain messengers to the city of Evreux to the captain there, desiring him to send out of the city all manner of companions and other that were able for the war, and that they should meet with him about Cocherel, for there he thought to find the Frenchmen, for surely, he said, wheresoever they met he would fight with them. And when these tidings came to the captain of Evreux, named sir Leger d'Orgessin, then he commanded every man that was able to ride a horse should go out of the city and draw to the captal; and so there departed out of the town more than sixscore, all young men of the nation of the town. So that Wednesday the captal lodged by noon on a mountain and his company about him; and the Frenchmen rode forward to find them, till they came to a river called in that country Iton, the which ran toward Evreux, and it springeth near to Conches, and there they lodged that Wednesday in a fair meadow along by the river-side; and so the next morning both parties sent out their currours to see if they could hear any tidings each of other, and so each of them made report that they were within two leagues together. Then the Navarrois rode as Faucon led them, the same way he came from them, and so about noon they came ' This is a mistranslation. The original is Mais l'archeprestre est si grant barateur, que s'il venoit jusques a nous, [en nousl comptant jangles et hordes il adviseroit,' etc., `but the archpriest is so great a deceiver, that if he came to us, while telling us jests and pleasantries he would observe our strength,' etc. into the way to Cocherel, and there they saw the Frenchmen before them in ordering of their battles ; and there was great number of banners and pennons, so that they seemed to be double the number that they were indeed. Then the Navarrois rested them without a little wood that was there then the captains drew together and ordered their battles. First they made three battles well and properly all afoot and sent all their carriages and pages into the little wood, and they set sir John Jouel in the first battle with all the men of arms and archers of England; the second battle led the captal of Bush, and in his battle were a four hundred fighting men one and other, and with him was the lord of Sault of Navarre, a young lusty knight, the lord William of Gauville and sir Peter of Saquainville ; the third battle was led by three knights, that is to say, the lord bascle of Mareuil, the lord Bertram of [the] Franc and the lord Sanse Lopins, they were a four hundred : and when they had ordered their battles, then they tools the vantage of a little hill there beside on their right hand, between them and the wood, and so on the front of that hill they arranged themselves before their enemies ; and they set the captal's banner on a bush of thorns and set a sixty men of arms about it to defend it from their enemies, and that they did to the intent that, if they were sparkled abroad, they should draw to the standard, and so determined not to descend down from the mountain for no manner of cause, but to let their enemies come to them, if they would fight with them.


How by the policy and counsel of sir Bertram of Guesclin the Navarrois descended down from the mountain to fight with the Frenchmen, and how the captal was taken. Taus, a

Page 145 (Chronicles of Froissart)