Sunday, 7 September 2014
What the Chroniclers said.......part 2
A continuation of my previous post.
11. Of course, it wasn’t all Piers fault he was like a second king – Edward was equally blamed. The St Paul’s Annalist tells us – ‘if any of the earls or magnates sought the king’s special grace with regard to any business, the king sent him to Piers’. What else are favourites for?:)
12. The Lanercost puts it a bit more bluntly. "There was not anyone who had a good word to say about the king or Piers." Except each other, maybe?
13. Murimuth points the finger at Piers again! Edward was ‘ruled by Piers’ counsel, despising the counsel of the other nobles and of those whose counsel especially used by his father’.
14. I can imagine this being a headline from a newspaper today – it’s from the Vita Edwardi Secundi and reflects on Edward’s decision to leave Piers as Regent as he heads to France for his wedding. ‘ What an astonishing thing, he was lately an exile, an outcast from England, has now been made governor and keeper of the land.’ Shocker, eh?:)
15. Time from another classic from the Vita. "The earls and barons he despised, and gave them insulting nicknames". Most of these were reported much later, after the death of Piers. The only contemporary nickname concerns Guy of Warwick – the ‘Black dog of Arden’.
16. One for speculation here from the Vita. It concerns a Christmas Edward and Piers spent together, in 1307. Apparently, they spent the time "making up for former absence by their long wished-for sessions of daily and intimate conversation’. I do hope Piers didn’t have too long a Christmas present list. Feel free to use your own imagination here as well!
17. Piers loved the Earl of Richmond! Well, so says John of Canterbury – Piers loved him "beyond measure." Thankfully for Edward II, he adds Piers called him ‘father’ and Richmond called him ‘son’, and then to complicate it further, Piers addressed him as his ‘dear cousin’.
18. Wallingord 1307 saw a triumphant Piers holding a tournament and trouncing the opposition. The Vita says ‘Sir Piers' side could not raise an earl, but almost all the younger and more athletic knights of the kingdom, whom persuasion or hope of reward could bring together, assisted him.’ The new knights on the block, I presume!
19. Oh dear – talk about sour grapes! The Vita says "So it was in this tournament his party had the upper hand and carried off the spoils, although the other side remained in possession of the field. For it is a recognised rule of this game that he who loses most and is most frequently unhorsed, is adjudged the most valiant and the stronger." How can losing be ‘most valiant’?
20. Edward loves Piers – as his dear brother! ‘When the King's son saw him he fell so much in love that he entered upon a compact with him, and chose and determined to knit an indissoluble bond of affection with him, before all other mortals’. Erm, a case of Piers scornfully rolling his eyes upwards? A shrug of the graceful shoulders and a ‘whatever’?