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fond.” The following seems a little poem, that the king composed in his tribulation: “My mistress and my consort, accursed be the man who thus separateth us! I am dying of grief because of it. My fair sister, my lady, and my sole desire 1 since I am robbed of the pleasure of beholding thee, such pain and affliction oppresseth my whole heart, that I am ofttimes near despair. Alas, Isabell rightful daughter of France you were wont to be my joy, my hope, my consolation. And now I plainly see, that through the violence of fortune, which hath slain many a man, I must be deprived of you; whereat I often endure so sincere a pang, that day and night I am in danger of bitter death. And it is no marvel, when I from such a height hath fallen so low, and lose my joy, my solace, and my consort.” Henry of Bolingbroke, it is said, gained possession, by a coup-de-main, of 700,000l., the treasury of the unfortunate Richard. With amazing celerity Henry traversed England, attended by sixty thousand Londoners and other malcontents, who had been disgusted with Richard's despotic government. With this disorderly militia Henry presented himself before the gates of Flint-castle, where Richard and a few faithful knights remained on the defensive. Here he boldly demanded an audience with the king, who agreed to admit him, and eleven others, to pass the wicket of the castle.” Henry spoke aloud, without paying any honour or reverence to the king, asking, “Have you broken your fast?” The king answered, “No ; it is yet early morn. Why do you ask?”—“It is time you should breakfast,” replied Henry, “for you have a great way to ride.”—“What road?” asked the king. “You must wend to London,” said Henry; “and I advise that you eat and drink heartily, that you may perform the journey more gaily.”—“Well,” said the king, “if that is the case, let the tables be covered.” When this was done, the king washed his hands, seated * Archaeologia, from the MS. of a French gentleman, an attendant on Richard, himself at table, and was served. During the time the king was eating, which was not long, for his heart was much oppressed, the whole country, seen from the windows of the castle, was covered with men-at-arms and archers. The king, on rising from the table, perceived them, and asked his cousin who they were? “For most part Londoners,” was the answer. “And what do they want?” inquired the king. “They want to take you,” replied Henry, “and carry you prisoner to the Tower; and there is no pacifying them, unless you yield yourself my prisoner.” The king was alarmed at this intimation, for he knew the Londoners hated him, and would kill him if he were ever in their power; he therefore yielded himself prisoner to his cousin, promising to do whatever he should advise. His knights and officers surrendered likewise to Henry, who, in the presence of the eleven that accompanied him, received the king and his attendants as prisoners. He then ordered the horses to be saddled instantly and brought into the court, and the gates of the castle to be flung open; whereupon many archers and men-at-arms crowded into the court-yard. “I heard,” says Froissart, “ of a singular circumstance that happened just then, which I must mention. King Richard had a greyhound, named Math, beautiful beyond description, who would not notice or follow any one but the king. Whenever Richard rode abroad, the greyhound was loosed by the person who had the care of him: and that instant he ran to caress his royal master, by placing his two fore-feet on his shoulders. It fellout, that as the king and his cousin Henry of Bolingbroke were conversing in the court-yard of Flint-castle, their horses being preparing for them to mount, the greyhound Math was untied, when, instead of running as usual to king Richard, he passed him and leaped to Henry's shoulders, paying him every court, the same as he used to his own master. Henry, not acquainted with this greyhound, asked the king the meaning of his fondness? ‘Cousin,” replied Richard, “it means a great deal for you, and very little for me.”—“How * said Henry; ‘pray explain it.”—“I understand by it,” said the unfortunate king, ‘that this my favourite WOL. II. C
translated by the rev. Mr. Webbe. * Froissart.
greyhound Math fondles and pays his court to you this day as king of England, which you will be, and I shall be deposed, for that the natural instinct of the creature perceives. Keep him, therefore, by your side; for lo! he leaveth me, and will ever follow you.’ Henry treasured up what king Richard had said, and paid attention to the greyhound Math, who would no more follow Richard of Bourdeaux, but kept by the side of Henry, as was witnessed by thirty thousand men.”’’ The attendants of king Richard have chronicled the humiliations and sufferings of their royal master, on this pilgrimage of sorrow and degradation, with a more indignant pen than that of Froissart, declaring that, to grieve and break the spirit of the royal captive, his fine-spirited horses were taken from him, and he was compelled to perform every stage on sorry, miserable jades, not worth ten shillings. This was a deep mortification, since among the king's luxuries he had indulged an expensive taste for noble and costly steeds. The king attempted to escape at Lichfield, where he dropped from a window of the tower in which he slept; but was perceived, and brought by force into Lichfield-castle again. As far as Coventry, parties of the king's faithful Welshmen pursued Henry of Bolingbroke's army, and harassed its rear. They were instigated and led by Richard’s beloved squire and minstrel, Owen Glendower, who, from the hour when his royal patron became the prisoner of “aspiring Bolingbroke,” vowed and maintained a life-long enmity against the supplanter of his king.” The young queen found herself in the power of the usurper almost simultaneously with her unfortunate husband. Directly the news arrived that Richard had surrendered himself, the garrisons of the royal castles of Windsor and Wallingford yielded to Henry of Bolingbroke. Tradition declares that the young Isabella met her luckless husband on the road, * Froissart. * Among the most beautiful of the Welsh melodies still exists the well-known air, “Sweet Richard.” Tradition declares this melody was composed by Glendower about this time, as a tribute of regret to his unfortunate prince; it was afterwards sung and played in the many risings in favour of Richard, with the during his sad pilgrimage towards the metropolis as a captive to Henry, and that their meeting and parting were tender and heart-breaking; but the whole of Richard’s progress has been minutely described by eye-witnesses, who, it may be thought, would not have been silent on a circumstance so picturesque and touching. This interview must, therefore, be considered as a mere romance of history, interwoven into English historical ballads: Shakspeare has made use of it with beautiful effect. In the midst of these changes, the young queen was hurried from place to place with little rest. From Wallingford she was carried by the popular party to Leeds-castle, in Kent, where she was placed under the care of the widowed duchess of Ireland; who, having been wronged by king Richard and his late queen, was not supposed to be extremely favourable to the cause of the imprisoned monarch. As lady de Coucy was sister to the duchess, she certainly obtained access to the queen again, notwithstanding her dismissal by king Richard; for she was at Leeds-castle when the insurgent Londoners took umbrage at her vicinity to the queen of Richard, and one of their leaders thus addressed her:-"Lady, make instant preparations of departure, for we will not suffer you to remain longer here. Take care, on saying farewell to queen Isabel, that you show not any tokens of anger at our dismissing you; but tell her that your husband and daughter in France have sent to entreat your return. This we advise you to do, if you regard your life. You must ask no questions and make no remarks to the queen, on any thing that is going on. You will be escorted to Dover, and embarked in the passage-boat for Boulogne.” The lady de Coucy, alarmed at these menaces, and knowing those who made them to be cruel and full of hatred, replied, “That in God's name she would do as they directed.”—“Palfreys and hackneys were furnished for herself and attendants, and all the French of both sexes were sent off." The foreign household of the queen being thus broken up, none were left with her that were at all attached to king Richard. A new retinue was formed for her, of ladies, damsels, and varlets, who were strictly enjoined never to mention the name of king Richard to her, or to acquaint her with what was become of him.” It is asserted by all authors of that day, that the heart of the young Isabella was devoted to Richard: the chroniclers of her own country especially declare, “that he had behaved so amiably to her, that she loved him entirely.” While, by a cruel policy, her youthful mind was torn with the pangs of suspense and the pain of parting from her native attendants, Richard was conveyed from Shene by night and lodged secretly in the Tower, with such of his friends and ministers as were peculiarly obnoxious to the Londoners. After enduring many mortifications at the Tower, king Richard offered to resign the crown to Henry of Bolingbroke, who immediately replied, “It is necessary that the three estates of the realm should hear this proposition; and in three days the parliaments will be collected, and can debate on the subject.” So far his rejoinder was made with moderation and propriety, but he added,—“The people want to crown me; for the common report in the country is, that I have a better right to the crown than you. This was told our grandfather, king Edward, of happy memory, when he educated you, and had you acknowledged heir to the crown; but his love was so strong for his son the prince of Wales, nothing could make him alter his purpose. If you had followed the example of the prince, you might still have been king; but you have always acted so contrary, as to occasion the rumour to be generally believed throughout England that you were not the son of the prince of Wales, but of a priest or canon. I have heard several knights who were of the household of my uncle, the prince of Wales, declare that he was jealous of the conduct of the princess. She was cousingerman to king Edward, who began to dislike her for not having children by his son, for he knew that she had sons by her former marriage with sir Thomas Holland, since he had * Froissart, and MS. of the Ambassades.
same powerful effect that the celebrated Jacobite airs had on the partisans of the house of Stuart.
* Either Froissart is mistaken in this assertion, or the French servants of the young queen were replaced by Henry IV., for the Minutes of Council contain a long list of French persons who returned to France with Isabella as officials of her household.