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’?

9 comments:

Kathryn Warner said...

These are just great ;) The moaning after the tournament really does sound like sour grapes, doesn't it? It's always interested me about Piers and Richmond - they do seem to have been close.

Anerje said...

LOL Kathryn - yes, the comments after the tournament are ridiculous. I'm surprised none of the barons said 'I let him win':> As for Piers and Richmond - I guess knowing Richmond's age might shed some light on it - and you're bound to know lots more about Richmond - surrogate father?

Kasia Ogrodnik said...

I love all the quotes, but was it really that bad that "There was not anyone who had a good word to say about the king or Piers", I wonder. Did they really have only each other to rely on?

Anerje said...

erm, yes Kasia:> seriously, I think there was an awful lot of jealousy over Piers - I think the nobles were annoyed he had the king's ear and they didn't think him worthy of being an Earl or suitable to advise Edward. I'm sure Thomas of Lancaster saw himself as Edward's guiding light, with all his titles and being his cousin.

Anerje said...

and to be honest, I think Piers and Edward were perfectly happy to have each other to rely on, and no-one else.

Kasia Ogrodnik said...

I guess you're right about the two being perfectly happy to have only each other. I can't help it, but it's so very very romantic...

Anerje said...

Lol! Certainly is!

Gabriele C. said...

It seems every chronicle that ever complained about a king added a bit about listening to the wrong advisors / being in company of the wrong sort of men. Edward and Heinrich IV could exchange notes. :-)

Anerje said...

yes Gabriele, you're right - and I think jealousy plays a big part as well.