Page 260

Page 260 (Chronicles of Froissart)

page 260

London. Sir Robert Knolles was sore displeased in that he might not go to slay them all: but the king would not consent thereto, but said he would be revenged of them well enough ; and so he was after. Thus these foolish people departed, some one way and some another; and the king and his lords and all his company right ordinately entered into London with great joy. And the first journey that the king made he went to the lady princess his mother, who was in a castle in the Royal called the Queen's Wardrobe, and there she had tarried two days and two nights right sore abashed, as she had good reason ; and when she saw the king her son, she was greatly rejoiced and said : `Ah, fair son, what pain and great sorrow that I have suffered for you this day!' Then the king answered and said : ` Certainly, madam, I know it well; but now rejoice yourself and thank God, for now it is time. I have this day recovered mine heritage and the realm of England, the which I had near lost.' Thus the king tarried that day with his mother, and every lord went peaceably to their own lodgings. Then there was a cry made in every street in the king's name, that all manner of men, not being of the city of London and have not dwelt there the space of one year, to depart ; and if any such be found there the Sunday by the sun-rising, that they should be taken as traitors to the king and to lose their heads. This cry thus made, there was none that durst brake it, and so all manner of people departed and sparkled abroad every man to their own places. John Ball and Jack Straw were found in an old house hidden, thinking to have stolen away, but they could not, for they were accused by their own men. Of the taking of them the king and his lords were glad, and then strake off their heads and Wat Tyler's also, and they were set on London bridge, and the valiant men's heads taken down that they had set on the Thursday before. These tidings anon spread abroad, so that the people of the strange countries, which were coming towards London, returned back again to their own houses and durst come no farther.


How the duke of Lancaster kept himself still in Scotland for fear of this rebellion, and how the king punished of these traitors the chief masters.

SUMMARY-The duke of Lancaster concluded the treaty with the Scots and returned. On his way he was refused admittance to the town of Berwick, and hearing bad news of the rebellion, returned into Scotland to wait till better tidings came. He was singularly hated by the rebels, who spread abroad that he was a traitor to the realm.

THE chapter continues thus:

Now I shall shew you the vengeance that the king of England took of these ungracious people in the mean season, while the duke of Lancaster was in Scotland. When these people were rappeased and that Baker was executed to death, and Lister of Stafford,' Wat Tyler, Jack Straw, John Ball and divers other at London, then the king was counselled to go visit his realm, through every shire, bailiwick and village, to purge and punish all the said evil-doers, and to get again all such letters as by force he had given them in divers places, and so to bring again his realm in good order. Then the king sent secretly for a certain number of men of arms to come to him at a day appointed, and so they did to the number of a five hundred spears and as many archers; and when they were all come as the king had devised, the king departed from London with his house. bold-men all only and took the way into Kent, whereas first these ungracious people began to stir : and these foresaid men of war followed after the king and coasted him, but they rode not in his company. The king entered into Kent and came to a village called Ospringe, and called the mayor and all the men of the town before him. And when they were all come into a fair place, the king made to be sbewed them by one of his council how they had erred against the king, and how they had near turned all England to tribulation and to loss. And because that the king knew well that this 1 The tr

Page 260 (Chronicles of Froissart)