Friday, February 12, 2010

Lord Scales Fights the Bastard of Burgundy on Foot, 1467

In the morough' next aftir, the xjth day of Juyn', before the Kyng in the same feelde; the seide Lorde Scales armed all' save his basenet, his cote on his bak as he did fight upon horsbak, richely beseen', came unto the porte of the seide feelde; his hors trappid to the foote in crymsyn velvet, with vij. targes embrowdird with dyvers his armes of his discent, and oon of all' the hole armes coupbled, fixid on the bak of the seide hors; the seide trapper sumyd with garters richely made and bourdrid withe frenge of goolde. Also thir folowid hym viij. coursours; and upon, viij. pages abiled richely in goldsmythis werke; the seide hors' harneisid in harneis of oon sute. The Duke of Clarence beryng his basenet: Therle of Arundell', Therle of Kent, the Lorde Herry of Bokyngham, M' Bourghchier, the Lorde Herberd, the Lorde Stafford; ev'ych' of them' beryng oon of the wepyns: that is to say, two castyng speres, ij axes and ij daggers. The Constable as before demaundyng the cause of his comyng; he answeryng, to pfourme his Armes on foote in Articles sent to the Bastarde of Bourgon; the Kyng certified thereof, licencid hym to coome into the felde. He there lightyng, came in before the Kyng accompanyed with' many noble lordes; dooyng his dewe reverence to his highnes, resortid to his Pavilon' richely beseene of velewet paly, blewe and tawny; the valence of the seide tente crymesyn' cloth' of goolde; the seide pavylon' beryng in fassion .viij. squares, on ev'ych corner a banner ficchid of his armes; upon the pomell' of the seide pavylon', a gryffyn' of golde holdyng a banner' of his hole armes: his banner holdyn' by Clarenceux Kyng of Armes before his tente.

The Bastarde come ridyng to the barres, and there light', worshupfully accompanyed; before hym the Duke of Suffolk, Therle of Shrewysbury, the Lorde Mountjoy, S' Thomas Mongomery, with many othir lordis: demaundid at the porte of the listes by the Constable as byfore, by the Kynges licence entrid, and came before the Kyng syttyng in his magestee justifieng the feeld; and there with dewe reverence shewid the cause of his comyng, to accomplisshe his seconde Armes as before; and resortid to his pavylon' fixid in feld, in a long gowne of blewe veluet aboute hym, and legge harnesshid, his armes beyng afore in his pavilon', which was of white and purpill' damaske paly; the pomell' of the seide pavylone, gold; the valence of the seide tente, grene velvet, embrowdird with' his worde, that is to say, Null ne cy frete.

And in the meane tyme, the wepyns were p'sentid to the Kyng; the counsell' of bothe pties beyng p'sente. The Kyng beholdyng' the castyng speres right jepdous and right plious, saide, in as muche as it was but an acte of plesaunce, [he] wolde not have noon suche myschevous wepens usid before [him]; and comaundid the seide speres to be leide aparte, and ordeyned the toothir wepens, that is to sey, axes and daggers: the Bastarde to have the chois, accordyng to the Articl'es conteyned in the chapitre.

And then incontinent aftir the pclamacion made as before, the Constable of Englond visitid first the Lorde Scales in his tente, and founde him redy: and than' went unto the Kyng, and shewid that he was redy. And then went the seide Lorde Constable to the Lorde Basterd in his tente. And whan he had so visitid bothe, and shewid them by ij. Kynges of Armes, the Constable then sittyng in the place hym assigned, the seide Kynges of Armes shewyng of them at oo tyme to oothir to p'sente theire charges unto the lordes pavylons waytyng up on the .lesses aler'. all' at oo tyme, the Kyng of Armes spake theis wordes the tyme of lesses aler'. nowe is comaundid to be cried. And then' at the seide Kyng of Armes comyng before the place judiciall', the Kyng comaundid the lesses aler'. And right as the Kyng of Armes made the crye, the Lorde Scales openyd his pavylon'j and at the s'c'de lesses aler' entrid into the felde oute of his tente, and gafe a tarying & bode; and gafe contenaunce that he was redy with hande & fote & axe, in asmuche as he leide his axe upon his shuldre, and eftsones chaungid his axe from honde to hande. And then they avaunsed: and so right' afore the Kyng, either assaillid othir in suche wise, as the Lorde Scales at the recountre with' the poynte of his axe stroke thorugh' oon of the ribbes of the Bastardes plates; as the seid Basterd shewid hym aftir the feeld. And so they fought togidre; the Lorde Scales with the hede of his axe afore, the toothir with' the small end ; and smote many grete combres and thik strokes; till' at the laste that they fill' towardes a closse, at which' tyme the Lorde Scales stroke hym in the side of the visern' of his basenet. Then the Kyng pceyvyng the cruell' assaile, cast his staff, and with' high' voices cried, Whoo ! Notwithstondyng' in the departyng there was yoven .ij. or .iij. grete strokes; and oon of the ascotes stafes brake betwene them'. And they, so departid, were brought' afore the Kynges gode grace. The Lorde Scales fought' with his visern opyn ; which was thought jepdous: the Lorde Bastard fought closid, and there openyd it. And so they were brought up before the Kyng. He commaundid them ych' to take othir by the handes, and to love toogedirs as brethirs in amies; which they so did. And there they immediatly yafe yche to othir as courteis godely and frendely langage as coude be thought*; and went togidre into the middes of the felde. And there depart id iche man' to his loggyng. Finis &c'.1

1 " And on the morrow, at the hour appointed, appeared in the field Mons. the Bastard and Mons. d'Escalles; and my said Lord the Bastard was always accompanied with the Duke of Suffolk, who very heartily accompanied him; and after cries and ceremonies done, Mons. d'Escalles sent three kinds of weapons to present to the King, to furnish and achieve these arms on foot: and of these weapons the Bastard was to have the choice. The two first were two lances to throw, and two Knights bore them: the second were two axes, and two Barons bore them: the third weapons were two ' dagues,' and two Earls bore them. And when these weapons were presented to the Kiug, the King withheld in his hands the two casting-lances, and the four other weapons he sent to Mons. the Bastard, to take his choice according to the contents of the chapters. Mons. the Bastard kept one axe and one dagger, and the rest were brought by the Constable to Mons. d'Escalles. And there came the footscouts (les ecoutes de pie), to wit, six men of arms on foot, in good array, each having a staff of wood in his hand. The Bastard of Burgundy was dressed with his coat of arms, of Burgundy, with a bar traverse, to show that he was a bastard; and the Lord Scales had his coat of arms on his back, and bore his axe on his neck and in guize of an "espieu," and came crying 'Saint George!' three times. The champions set together fiercely, and assailed one another with great courage: and this battle was very fine; I never saw fight with axes so fiercely: and surely Mons. the Bastard showed well that he was a true knight, experienced in arms and in craft. And they were both taken and parted one from the other, without much hurt: and thus were these arms done and accomplished. And in truth, I saw afterward the harness of Mons. d'Escalles, where Mons. the Bastard had made great gashes with the under-point of his axe, {de la dague de dessous de sa hache): and as to the daggers that were given to them, they did not use them in this battle. And so the champions took leave of the King, and went away both at one time from the lists, their axes on their necks, to show that they had not been unweaponed: and so each retired to his lodging."—Olivier de la Marche, p. 492-3.

Excerpta historica: or, Illustrations of English history [edited by Samuel Bentley] London, 1831 pp. 210-212

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