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Page 199 (Chronicles of Froissart)

page 199

to break up their army for that time, as the duke of Anjou had done, and to return into their own countries to keep and defend their towns and fortresses because of sir Robert Knolles, who was still abroad in the field in France; also they said how they had right well sped in winning of such a city as Limoges. So this counsel and advice was not broken, but thus these lords departed each from other, and sir Bertram abode still in the parts of Limousin with two hundred spears and kept the castles of the lord of Melva], the which were turned French. When the duke of Berry departed from Limoges, he ordained and set in the same city at the request of the bishop sir John of Villemur, sir Hugh de la Roche and Roger Beaufort, with a hundred men of arms, and then he went into Berry and the duke of Bourbon into Bourbonnois, and other lords of farther marches went home into their own countries. Now let us speak of the prince, how he sped. When tidings was come to the prince that the city of Limoges was turned French, and how that the bishop, who was his gossip and in whom he had before great trust and confidence, was chief aider to yield up the city and to become French, with the which the prince was sore displeased and set less force in1 the men of the Church, in whom before he had great trust. Then he sware by his father's soul, whereby he was never forsworn, that he would get it again and that he would make the traitors dearly abye their falseness. When the most part of his people were come, they were numbered to twelve hundred spears, knights and squires, a thousand archers and a thousand 2 men afoot ; and so he departed from the town of Cognac, and with him his two brethren, the duke of Lancaster and the earl of Cambridge: Sir Thomas Felton and the captal of Buch abode still at Bergerac, to keep the frontier against the Frenchmen and companions that were in the country. And with the prince also was sir Guichard d'Angle, sir Louis Harcourt, the lord of Pons, the lord of Partenay, the lord of Poyanne, the lord of Tannay-Bouton, sir Perceval of Couloyne, sir Godfrey d'Argenton, Poitevins ; and Gascons, the lord of

1 `Esteemed less.'

2 `Three thousand,' according to the true text.

Montferrant, the lord of Caumont, the lord Langoiran, sir Aymery of Tastes, the lord of Pommiers, the lord of Mussidan, the lord of Lesparre, the lord of Geronde and divers other; Englishmen, as sir Thomas Percy, the lord Ros, the lord William Beauchamp, sir Michael de la Pole, the lord Stephen Cosington, sir Richard of Pontchardon, sir Baudwin of Freville, sir Simon Burley, sir d'Aghorisses, sir John Devereux, sir William of Nevill and divers other, the which I cannot all name ; and of Hainowes there was sir Eustace d'Aubrecicourt ; and of the companions sir Perducas d'Albret, Naudan of Bageran, and thither came le bourg de Lesparre, le bourg de Breteuil, Espiote, Bernard de Wist and [livers other. So all these men of war went forth in good ordinance and took. the fields, and all the country trembled before them. The prince was so diseased that he could not ride, but so was carried in a horse litter; and he took the way of Limousin to the intent to come to Limoges, and at last thither they came, and so lodged round about the city ; and there the prince sware that he would never depart thence till he had the city at his pleasure. The bishop within and the burgesses considered well how they had greatly trespassed the prince, whereof then they repented them, but then they could not remedy it, for they were not as then lords nor masters of their own city. Sir John Villemur, sir Hugh de la Roche and Roger Beaufort, who were captains within the city, comforted greatly their people and said : ` Sirs, be not afraid, we are strong enough to resist against the prince's power ; for by assault he cannot hurt nor grieve us, we are all well furnished with artillery.' When the prince and his marshals had well imagined and considered the puissance and strength of the city and had knowledge of the number of men of war within, then they said how by assault

Page 199 (Chronicles of Froissart)