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Page 267 (Chronicles of Froissart)

page 267

These three knights could have none other answer of him as at that time, and so they returned again to Tournay and shewed how the earl answered them. And a six days after there came to Tournay from the earl the lord of Ramseflies and the lord of Gruthuse and sir John Vilain and the provost of Harlebecque, and they excused the earl because he came not; and then they declared the earl's full intent as touching the peace, saying how they of Gaunt can have no peace with the earl without that they will generally, all manner of men in Gaunt of the ages between fifteen and sixty, come out of the town of Gaunt in their shirts, bare-headed, with halters about their necks, and so meet the earl between Bruges and Gaunt, and the earl to d0 with them his pleasure, other to let them live or to put them all to death at his pleasure. When this answer was made and the relation thereof declared to them of Gaunt by the councils of these three countries, then they were more abashed than ever they were before. Then the bailiff of Hainault said to them : ` Sirs, ye be in great peril : every man take heed to himself. I think, if ye take this way and put yourselves at his will, he will not put all to death that he seeth in his presence; peradventure some he will, as such as hath displeased him more than other. I think he shall have such means of pity, that peradventure such as weeneth himself to be most in peril may hap to come to pardon and mercy. Therefore, sirs, I would counsel you to take this offer and refuse it not ; for if ye do, I think it will be long or ye recover again such another offer.' `Sir,' quoth Philip d'Arteveld, `we have no such charge to go so far as to bring the good people of Gaunt into that point; for I ensure you they will not so do. For, sir, when we be come again to Gaunt and have shewed them the earl's pleasure, know for truth they will not do it : if they will, I ensure you they shall not be let for us. Sir, we thank you for the travail and good diligence that ye have had in this matter.' And so then they of Gaunt took their leave of the councils of these three countries and made well semblant that they would in no wise agree to this purpose, and so departed and returned to Gaunt through Brabant. So thus brake up this council at Tournay and every man went home. Then the earl of Flanders demanded what answer they of Gaunt made, and it was shewed him. The earl as then set little price by them, for he knew well they had endured and suffered so much that they could never suffer no longer: wherefore he thought he should have shortly an honourable end of the war, and to bring Gaunt into that point that all other towns should take ensample by it. The same season the commons of Paris began again to murmur because the king came not thither, and they feared lest the king would have come suddenly on them with a certain men of war and overrun the city, and to have put to death whom he had list : and for doubt of that peril they made great watch every night in the streets and market-places and raised up their chains, that no man should ride nor enter in among them, and if any person were found abroad after nine of the clock, without he were well known among them, he was but dead. So they were in Paris rich men and other men of arms to the number of thirty thousand, as well harnessed at all pieces as any knight ought to be; and also they had servants right well harnessed, bearing great mallets of iron and steel to confound helms, and when they were numbered and viewed, they thought themselves able to fight with the greatest prince in all the world. These people were called the routs and mallets t of Paris.


How that a five thousand Gauntois issued out of Gaunt to fight with the earl and with them of Bruges after the answer that Philip d'Arteveld had shewed them.

WHEN Philip d'Arteveld and his company entered again into Gaunt, a great number of the common people desiring nothing but peace were right joyful of their coming, trusting to hear some good tidings. They came against him and could not restrain

Page 267 (Chronicles of Froissart)