GROWTH OF THE CITIES.—The same need of defense that led to the building of towers and castles in the country drove men within the walls of towns. Industry and trade developed intelligence, and produced wealth. But burghers under the feudal rule were obliged to pay heavy tolls and taxes. For example, for protection on a journey through any patch of territory, they were required to make a payment. Besides the regular exactions, they were exposed to most vexatious depredations of a lawless kind. As they advanced in thrift and wealth, communities that were made up largely of artisans and tradesmen armed themselves for their own defense. From self-defense they proceeded farther, and extorted exemptions and privileges from the suzerain, the effect of which was to give them a high though limited degree of self-government.
ORIGIN OF MUNICIPAL FREEDOM.—It has been supposed that municipal government in the Middle Ages was a revival of old Roman rights and customs, and thus an heirloom from antiquity. The cities—those on the Rhine and in Gaul, for example—were of Roman origin. But the view of scholars at present is, that municipal liberty, such as existed in the Middle Ages, was a native product of the Germanic peoples. The cities were incorporated into the feudal system. They were subject to a lay lord or to a bishop. In Italy, however, they struggled after a more complete republican system.
CITIES AND SUZERAINS.—In the conflicts which were waged by the cities, they were sometimes helped by the suzerain against the king, and sometimes by the king against the nearer suzerain. In England the cities were apt to ally themselves with the nobility against the king: in Germany and France the reverse was the fact. But in Germany the cities which came into an immediate relation to the sovereign were less closely dependent on him than were the cities in France on the French king.
TWO CLASSES OF CITIES.—Not only did the cities wrest from the lords a large measure of freedom: it was often freely conceded to them. Nobles, in order to bring together artisans, and to build up a community in their own neighborhood, granted extraordinary privileges. Charters were given to cities by the king. Communities thus formed differed from the other class of cities in not having the same privilege of administering justice within their limits.
GERMAN CITIES.—The cities in Germany increased in number on the fall of the Hohenstaufen family. They made the inclosure of their walls a place of refuge, as the nobles did the vicinity of their castles. They eventually gained admittance to the Diets of the empire. They formed leagues among themselves, which, however, did not become political bodies, any more than the Italian leagues.
THE ROMAN LAW.—The revised study of the Roman law brought in a code at variance with feudal principles. The middle class, that was growing up in the great commercial cities, availed themselves, as far as they could, of its principles in regard to the inheritance of property. The legists helped in a thousand ways to emancipate them from the yoke of feudal traditions.
MUNICIPAL GOVERNMENT.—The cities themselves often had vassals, and became suzerains. Government rested in the hands of the magistrates. They were chosen by the general assembly of the inhabitants, who were called together by the tolling of the bell. The magistrates governed without much restraint until another election, unless there were popular outbreaks, "which were at this time," as Guizot remarks, "the great guarantee for good government." Where the courage and spirit of burghers were displayed was in the maintenance of their own privileges, or purely in self-defense. In all other relations they showed the utmost humility; and in the twelfth century, when their emancipation is commonly dated, they did not pretend to interfere in the government of the country.
TRAVELERS AND TRADE.—The East, especially India, was conceived of as a region of boundless riches; but commerce with the East was hindered by a thousand difficulties and dangers. Curiosity led travelers to penetrate into the countries of Asia. Among them the Polo family of Venice, of whom Marco was the most famous, were specially distinguished. Marco Polo lived in China, with his father and his uncle, twenty-six years. After his return, and during his captivity at Genoa, he wrote the celebrated accounts of his travels. He died about 1324. Sir John Mandeville also wrote of his travels, but most of his descriptions were taken from the work of Friar Odoric, of Pordenone, who had visited the Far East. Merchants did not venture so far as did bold explorers of a scientific turn. Commerce in the Middle Ages was mainly in two districts,—the borders of the North Sea and of the Baltic, and the countries upon the Mediterranean. Trade in the cities on the African coast, in the tenth and eleventh centuries, was flourishing; and the Arabs of Spain were industrious and rich. Arles, Marseilles, Nice, Genoa, Florence, Amalfi, Venice, vied with one another in traffic with the East. Intermediate between Venice and Genoa, and the north of Europe, were flourishing marts, among which Strasburg and other cities on the Rhine—Augsburg, Ulm, Ratisbon, Vienna, and Nuremberg—were among the most prominent. Through these cities flowed the currents of trade from the North to the South, and from the South to the North.
THE HANSEATIC LEAGUE.—To protect themselves against the feudal lords and against pirates, the cities of Northern Germany formed (about 1241) the Hanseatic League, which, at the height of its power, included eighty-five cities, besides many other cities more or less closely affiliated with it. This league was dominant, as regards trade and commerce, in the north of Europe, and united under it the cities on the Baltic and the Rhine, as well as the large cities of Flanders. Its merchants had control of the fisheries, the mines, the agriculture, and manufactures of Germany. Luebeck, Cologne, Brunswick, and Dantzic were its principal places. Luebeck was its chief center. In all the principal towns on the highways of commerce, the flag of the Hansa floated over its counting-houses. Wherever the influence of the league reached, its regulations were in force. It almost succeeded in monopolizing the trade of Europe north of Italy.
FLANDERS: ENGLAND: FRANCE.—The numerous cities of Flanders—of which Ghent, Ypres, and Bruges were best known—became hives of industry and of thrift. Ghent, at the end of the thirteenth century, surpassed Paris in riches and power. In the latter part of the fourteenth century, the number of its fighting men was estimated at eighty thousand. The development of Holland was more slow. Amsterdam was constituted a town in the middle of the thirteenth century. England began to exchange products with Spain. It sent its sheep, and brought back the horses of the Arabians. The cities of France—Rouen, Orleans, Rheims, Lyons, Marseilles, etc.—were alive with manufactures and trade. In the twelfth century the yearly fairs at Troyes, St. Denis, and Beaucaire were famous all over Europe.
NEW INDUSTRIES.—It has been already stated that the crusaders brought back to Europe the knowledge as well as the products of various branches of industry. Such were the cloths of Damascus, the glass of Tyre, the use of windmills, of linen, and of silk, the plum-trees of Damascus, the sugar-cane, the mulberry-tree. Cotton stuffs came into use at this time. Paper made from cotton was used by the Saracens in Spain in the eighth century. Paper was made from linen at a somewhat later date. In France and Germany it was first manufactured early in the fourteenth century.
THE JEWS.—The Jews in the Middle Ages were often treated with extreme harshness. An outburst of the crusading spirit was frequently attended with cruel assaults upon them. As Christians would not take interest, money-lending was a business mainly left to the Hebrews. By them, bills of exchange were first employed.
OBSTACLES TO TRADE.—The great obstacle to commerce was the insecurity of travel. Whenever a shipwreck took place, whatever was cast upon the shore was seized by the neighboring lord. A noble at Leon, in Brittany, pointing out a rock on which many vessels had been wrecked, said, "I have a rock there more precious than the diamonds on the crown of a king." It was long before property on the sea was respected, even in the same degree as property on the land. Not even at the present day has this point been reached. The infinite diversity of coins was another embarrassment to trade. In every fief, one had to exchange his money, always at a loss. Louis IX. ordained that the money of eighty lords, who had the right to coin, should be current only in their own territories, while the coinage of the king should be received everywhere.
GUILDS.—A very important feature of mediaeval society was the guilds. Societies more or less resembling these existed among the Romans, and were called collegia,—some being for good fellowship or for religious rites, and others being trade-corporations. There were, also, similar fraternities among the Greeks in the second and third centuries B.C. In the Middle Ages, there were two general classes of guilds: First, there were the peace-guilds, for mutual protection against thieves, etc., and for mutual aid in sickness, old age, or impoverishment from other causes. They were numerous in England, and spread over the Continent. Secondly, there were the trade-guilds, which embraced the guilds-merchant, and the craft-guilds. The latter were associations of workmen, for maintaining the customs of their craft, each with a master, or alderman, and other officers. They had their provisions for mutual help for themselves and for their widows and orphans, and they had their religious observances. Each had its patron saint, its festivals, its treasury. They kept in their hands the monopoly of the branch of industry which belonged to them. They had their rules in respect to apprenticeship, etc. Almost all professions and occupations were fenced in by guilds.
MONASTICISM.—Society in the Middle Ages presented striking and picturesque contrasts. This was nowhere more apparent than in the sphere of religion. Along with the passion for war and the consequent reign of violence, there was a parallel self-consecration to a life of peace and devotion. With the strongest relish for pageantry and for a brilliant ceremonial in social life and in worship, there was associated a yearning for an ascetic course under the monastic vows. As existing orders grew rich, and gave up the rigid discipline of earlier days, new orders were formed by men of deeper religious earnestness. In the eleventh century, there arose, among other orders, the Carthusian and Cistercian; in the twelfth century, the Premonstrants and the Carmelites, and the order of Trinitarians for the liberation of Christian captives taken by the Moslems. The older orders, especially that of the Benedictines in its different branches, became very wealthy and powerful. The Cistercian Order, under its second founder, St. Bernard (who died in 1153), spread with wonderful rapidity.
THE MENDICANT ORDERS.—In the thirteenth century, when the papal authority was at its height, the mendicant orders arose. The order of St. Francis was fully established in 1223, and the order of St. Dominic in 1216. They combined with monastic vows the utmost activity in preaching and in other clerical work. These orders attracted young men of talents and of a devout spirit in large numbers. The mendicant friars were frequently in conflict with the secular clergy,—the ordinary priesthood,—and with the other orders. But they gained a vast influence, and were devotedly loyal to the popes. It must not be supposed that the monastic orders generally were made up of the weak or the disappointed who sought in cloisters a quiet asylum. Disgust with the world, from whatever cause, led many to become members of them; but they were largely composed of vigorous minds, which, of their own free choice, took on them the monastic vows.
THE RISE OF THE UNIVERSITIES.—The Crusades were accompanied by a signal revival of intellectual activity. One of the most important events of the thirteenth century was the rise of the universities. The schools connected with the abbeys and the cathedrals in France began to improve in the eleventh century, partly from an impulse caught by individuals from the Arabic schools in Spain. After the scholastic theology was introduced, teachers in this branch began to give instruction near those schools in Paris. Numerous pupils gathered around noted lecturers. An organization followed which was called a university,—a sort of guild,—made up of four faculties,—theology, canon law, medicine, and the arts. The arts included the three studies (trivium) of grammar, rhetoric, and philosophy, with four additional branches (the quadrivium),—arithmetic, geometry, music, astronomy. Paris became the mother of many other universities. Next to Paris, Oxford was famous as a seat of education. Of all the universities, Bologna in Italy was most renowned as a school for the study of the civil law.
SCHOLASTIC THEOLOGY.—The scholastic theology dates from the middle of the eleventh century. It was the work of numerous teachers, many of them of unsurpassed acuteness, who, at a time when learning and scholarship were at a low ebb, made it their aim to systemize, elucidate, and prove on philosophical grounds, the doctrines of the Church. Aristotle was the author whose philosophical writings were most authoritative with the schoolmen. In theology, Augustine was the most revered master.
The main question in philosophy which the schoolmen debated was that of Nominalism and Realism. The question was, whether a general term, as man, stands for a real being designated by it (as man, in the example given, for humanity), or is simply the name of divers distinct individuals.
THE LEADING SCHOOLMEN.—In the eleventh century Anselm of Canterbury was a noble example of the scholastic spirit. In the thirteenth century Abelard was a bold and brilliant teacher, but with less depth and discretion. He, like other eminent schoolmen, attracted multitudes of pupils. The thirteenth century was the golden age of scholasticism. Then flourished Albert the Great, Thomas Aquinas, St. Bonaventura, and others very influential in their day. There were two schools of opinion,—that of the Thomists, the adherents of Aquinas, the great theologian of the Dominican order; and that of the Scotists, the adherents of Duns Scotus, a great light of the Franciscans. They differed on various theological points not involved in the common faith.
The discussions of the schoolmen were often carried into distinctions bewildering from their subtlety. There were individuals who were more disposed to the inductive method of investigation, and who gave attention to natural as well as metaphysical science. Perhaps the most eminent of these is Roger Bacon. He was an Englishman, was born in 1219, and died about 1294. He was imprisoned for a time on account of the jealousy with which studies in natural science and new discoveries in that branch were regarded by reason of their imagined conflict with religion. Astrology was cultivated by the Moors in Spain in connection with astronomy. It spread among the Christian nations. Alchemy, the search for the transmutation of metals, had its curious votaries. But such pursuits were popularly identified with diabolic agency.
THE VERNACULAR LITERATURES: THE TROUBADOURS.—Intellectual activity was for a long time exclusively confined to theology. The earliest literature of a secular cast in France belongs to the tenth and eleventh centuries, and to the dialect of Provence. The study of this language, and the poetry composed in it, became the recreation of knights and noble ladies. Thousands of poets, who were called Troubadours (from trobar, to find or invent), appeared almost simultaneously, and became well known in Spain and in Italy as well as in France. At the same time the period of chivalry began. The theme of their tender and passionate poems was love. They indulged in a license which was not offensive, owing to the laxity of manners and morals in Southern France at that day, but would be intolerable in a different state of society. Kings, as well as barons and knights, adopted the Provencal language, and figured as troubadours. In connection with jousts and tournaments, there would be a contest for poetical honors. The "Court of Love," made up of gentle ladies, with the lady of the castle at their head, gave the verdict. Besides the songs of love, another class of Provencal poems treated of war or politics, or were of a satirical cast. From the Moors of Spain, rhyme, which belonged to Arabian poetry, was introduced, and spread thence over Europe. After the thirteenth century the troubadours were heard of no more, and the Provencal tongue became a mere dialect.
THE NORMAN WRITERS.—The first writers and poets in the French language proper appeared in Normandy. They called themselves Trouveres. They were the troubadours of the North. They composed romances of chivalry, and Fabliaux, or amusing tales. They sang in a more warlike and virile strain than the poets of the South. Their first romances were written late in the twelfth century. About that time Villehardouin wrote in French a history of the conquest of Constantinople. From the poem entitled "Alexander," the name of Alexandrine verse came to be applied to the measure in which it was written. A favorite theme of the romances of chivalry was the mythical exploits of Arthur, the last Celtic king of Britain, and of the knights of the Round Table. Another class of romances of chivalry related to the court of Charlemagne. The Fabliaux in the twelfth and thirteenth centuries were largely composed of tales of ludicrous adventures.
GERMAN, ENGLISH, AND SPANISH WRITERS.—In Germany, in the age of the Hohenstaufens, the poets called Minnesingers abounded. They were conspicuous at the splendid tournaments and festivals. In the thirteenth century numerous lays of love, satirical fables, and metrical romances were composed or translated. Of the Round Table legends, that of the San Graal (the holy vessel) was the most popular. It treated of the search for the precious blood of Christ, which was said to have been brought in a cup or charger into Northern Europe by Joseph of Arimathea. During this period the old ballads were thrown into an epic form; among them, the Nibelungenlied, the Iliad of Germany. The religious faith and loyalty of the Spanish character, the fruit of their long contest with the Moors, are reflected in the poem of the Cid, which was composed about the year 1200. It is one of the oldest epics in the Romance languages. In England during this period, we have the chronicles kept in the monasteries. Among their authors are William of Malmesbury, Geoffrey of Monmouth, and Matthew Paris, a Benedictine monk of St. Albans.
DANTE.—Dante, the chief poet of Italy, and the father of its vernacular literature, was born in Florence in 1265. The Divine Comedy is universally regarded as one of the greatest products of poetical genius.
The family of Alighieri, to which Dante belonged, was noble, but not of the highest rank. He was placed under the best masters, and became not only an accomplished student of Virgil and other Latin poets, but also an adept in theology and in various other branches of knowledge. His training was the best that the time afforded. His family belonged to the anti-imperial party of Guelfs. The spirit of faction raged at Florence. Dante was attached to the party of "Whites" (Bianchi), and, having held the high office of prior in Florence, was banished, with many others, when the "Blacks" (Neri) got the upper hand (1302). Until his death, nineteen years later, he wandered from place to place in Italy as an exile. Circumstances, especially the distracted condition of the country, led him to ally himself with the Ghibellines, and to favor the imperial cause. All that he saw and suffered until he breathed his last, away from his native city, at Ravenna, combined to stir within him the thoughts and passions which find expression in his verse.
No poet before Dante ever equaled him in depth of thought and feeling. His principal work is divided into three parts. It is an allegorical vision of hell, purgatory, and heaven. Through the first two of these regions, the poet is conducted by Virgil. In the third, Beatrice is his guide. When he was a boy of nine years of age, he had met, at a May-day festival, Beatrice, who was of the same age; and thenceforward he cherished towards her a pure and romantic affection. Before his twenty-fifth year she died; but, after her death, his thoughts dwelt upon her with a refined but not less passionate regard. She is his imaginary guide through the abodes of the blest. His Young Life (Vita Nuova) gives the history of his love. The "Divine Comedy"—so called because the author would modestly place it below the rank of tragedy,—besides the lofty genius which it exhibits, besides the matchless force and beauty of its diction, sums up, so to speak, what is best and most characteristic in the whole intellectual and religious life of the Middle Ages. Thomas Aquinas was Dante's authority in theology. The scholastic system taught by the Church is brought to view in his pictures of the supernatural world, and in the comments connected with them.
PAINTING.—After the Lombard conquest of Italy, art branched off into two schools. The one was the Byzantine, and the other the Late Roman. In the Byzantine paintings, the human figures are stiff, and conventional forms prevail. The Byzantine school conceived of Jesus as without beauty of person,—literally "without form or comeliness." The Romans had a directly opposite conception. Byzantine taste had a strong influence in Italy, especially at Venice. This is seen in the mosaics of St. Mark's Cathedral. The first painter to break loose from Byzantine influence, and to introduce a more free style which flourished under the patronage of the Church, was Cimabue (1240-1302), who is generally considered the founder of modern Italian painting. The first steps were now taken towards a direct observation and imitation of nature. The artist is no longer a slavish copyist of others. "Cimabue" says M. Taine, "already belongs to the new order of things; for he invents and expresses." But Cimabue was far outdone by Giotto (1276-1337), who cast off wholly the Byzantine fetters, studied nature earnestly, and abjured that which is false and artificial. Notwithstanding his technical defects, his force, and "his feeling for grace of action and harmony of color," were such as to make him, even more than Cimabue, "the founder of the true ideal style of Christian art, and the restorer of portraiture." "His, above all, was a varied, fertile, facile, and richly creative nature." The contemporary of Dante, his portrait of the poet has been discovered in recent times on a wall in the Podesta at Florence. "He stands at the head of the school of allegorical painting, as the latter of that of poetry." The most famous pupil of Giotto was Taddeo Gaddi (about 1300-1367).
SCULPTURE.—In the thirteenth century, the era of the revival of art in Italy, a new school of sculpture arose under the auspices especially of two artists, Niccolo of Pisa and his son Giovanni. They brought to their art the same spirit which belonged to Giotto in painting and to Dante in poetry. The same courage that moved the great poet to write in his own vernacular tongue, instead of in Latin, emboldened the artists to look away from the received standards, and to follow nature. In the same period a new and improved style of sculpture appears in other countries, especially in the Gothic cathedrals of Germany and France.
ARCHITECTURE.—The earliest Christian churches were copies of the Roman basilica,—a civil building oblong in shape, sometimes with and sometimes without rows of columns dividing the nave from the aisles: at one end, there was usually a semicircular apse. Most of the churches of the eleventh and twelfth centuries were built after this style. Then changes were introduced, which in some measure paved the way for the Gothic, the peculiar type of mediaeval architecture. The essential characteristic of this style is the pointed arch. This may have been introduced by the returning crusaders from buildings which they had observed in the East. Its use and development in the churches and other edifices of Europe in the twelfth and thirteenth centuries were without previous example. The Gothic style was carried to its perfection in France, and spread over England and Germany. The cathedrals erected in this form are still the noblest and most attractive buildings to be seen in the old European towns.
The cathedral in Rheimes was commenced in 1211: the choir was dedicated in 1241, and the edifice was completed in 1430. The cathedral of Amiens was begun in 1220; that of Chartres was begun about 1020, and was dedicated in 1260; that of Salisbury was begun in 1220; that of Cologne, in 1248; the cathedral of Strasburg was only half finished in 1318, when the architect, Erwin of Steinbach, died; that of Notre Dame in Paris was begun in 1163; that of Toledo, in 1258. These noble buildings were built gradually: centuries passed before the completion of them. Several of them to this day remain unfinished.
FRANCE.—THE HOUSE OF VALOIS.
PHILIP VI, 1328-1350, m. Jeanne, daughter of Robert II, Duke of Burgundy. + JOHN, 1350-1364, m. Bona, daughter of John, King of Bohemia. + CHARLES V, 1364-1380, m. Jeanne, daughter of Peter I, Duke of Bourbon. + CHARLES VI, 1380-1422, m. Isabella, daughter of Stephen, Duke of Bavaria. + CHARLES VII, 1422-1461, m. Mary, daughter of Louis II of Anjou. + LOUIS XI, 1461-1483, m. (2), Charlotte, daughter of Louis, Duke of Savoy. + 3, CHARLES VIII, 1483-1498, m. Anne of Bretagne. + Louis, Duke of Orleans (d. 1407) m. Valentina, daughter of Gian Galeazzi, Duke of Milan. + Charles, Duke of Orleans (d. 1467), m. Mary of Cleves. + 2, Anne of Bretagne, m. LOUIS XII, 1498-1515. + Claude, m. FRANCIS I, 1515-1547. + John, Count of Angouleme (d. 1467). + Charles, count (d. 1496), m. Louisa, daughter of Philip II, Duke of Savoy. + FRANCIS I, 1515-1547. + HENRY II. 1547-1559, m.. Catherine de' Medici, d.. 1589. + FRANCIS II, 1559-1560, m. Mary, Queen of Scots. + CHARLES IX, 1560-1574, m. Elizabeth, daughter of Emperor Maximilian II. + HENRY III. 1574-1589, m. Louis, daughter of Nicholas, Duke of Mercoeur. + Margaret, m. + HENRY IV, succeeded 1589. + Jeanne, m. Anthony of Bourbon. + MARGARET, m. (2), HENRY II OF NAVARRE.
ENGLAND.—DESCENDANTS OF EDWARD I
EDWARD I, 1272-1307, m.. 1, Eleanor, daughter of Ferdinand III of Castile; + 4, EDWARD II, 1307-1327, m.. Isabel, daughter of Philip IV of France. + EDWARD III, 1327-1377, m. Philippa, daughter of William III of Hainault. + Edward, the Black Prince, m. Joan of Kent. + RICHARD II, 1377-1399, m. Anne, daughter of Emperor Charles IV. + Lionel, Duke of Clarence. + Philippa, m. Edmund Mortimer. + Roger Mortimer. + Edmund Mortimer. + Anne Mortimer, m. Richard, Earl of Cambridge. + Richard, Duke of York. + EDWARD IV, 1461-1483. + EDWARD V (d. 1483). + RICHARD III, 1483-1485. + John of Gaunt, Duke of Lancaster. + HENRY IV, 1399-1413. + HENRY V, 1413-1422. + HENRY VI, 1422-1461. + Edmund, Duke of York. + Richard, Earl of Cambridge m. Anne Mortimer (wh. see).
2, Margaret, daughter of Philip III of France.
PERIOD IV. FROM THE END OF THE CRUSADES TO THE FALL OF CONSTANTINOPLE. (A.D. 1270-1453.)
THE DECLINE OP ECCLESIASTICAL AUTHORITY: THE GROWTH OF THE NATIONAL SPIRIT AND OF MONARCHY.
CHARACTER OF THE NEW ERA.—The Church was supreme in the era of the Crusades. These had been great movements of a society of which the Pope was the head,—movements in which the pontiffs were the natural leaders. We come now to an era when the predominance of the Church declines, and the Papacy loses ground. Mingled with religion, there is diffused a more secular spirit. The nations grow to be more distinct from one another. Political relations come to be paramount. The national spirit grows strong,—too strong for outside ecclesiastical control. Within each nation the laity is inclined to put limits to the power and privileges of the clergy. In several of the countries, monarchy in the modern European form gets a firm foothold. The enfranchisement of the towns, the rise of commerce, the influence gained by the legists and by the Roman law, of which they were the expounders, had betokened the dawn of a new era. The development of the national languages and literatures signified its coming. Germany and the Holy Roman Empire no longer absorb attention. What is taking place in France and England is, to say the least, of equal moment.
CHAPTER I. ENGLAND AND FRANCE: SECOND PERIOD OP RIVALSHIP: THE HUNDRED YEARS' WAR (A.D. 1339-1453).
PHILIP III. OF FRANCE (1270-1285).—In France royalty made a steady progress down to the long War of a Hundred Years. Philip III. (1270-1285) married his son to the heiress of Navarre. His sway extended to the Pyrenees. He failed in an expedition against Peter, king of Aragon, who had supported the Sicilians against Charles of Anjou; but the time for foreign conquests had not come.
PHILIP IV. OF FRANCE (1285-1314): WAR WITH EDWARD I. OF ENGLAND.— Philip IV. (the Fair) has been styled the "King of the Legists." He surrounded himself with lawyers, who furnished him, from their storehouse of Roman legislation, weapons with which to face baron and pope. In 1292 conflicts broke out between English and French sailors. Philip, in his character as suzerain, undertook to take peaceful possession of Guienne, but was prevented by the English garrisons. Thereupon he summoned Edward I. of England, as the holder of the fiefs, before his court. Edward sent his brother as a deputy, but the French king declared that the fiefs were forfeited in consequence of his not appearing in person.
In the war that resulted (1294-1297), each party had his natural allies. Philip had for his allies the Welsh and the Scots, while Edward was supported by the Count of Flanders and by Adolphus of Nassau, king of the Romans. In Scotland, William Wallace withstood Edward. Philip was successful in Flanders and in Guienne. Edward, who was kept in England by his war with the Scots, secured a truce through the mediation of Pope Boniface VIII. Philip then took possession of Flanders, with the exception of Ghent. Flanders was at that time the richest country in Europe. Its cities were numerous, and the whole land was populous and industrious. From England it received the wool used in its thriving manufactures. To England its people were attached. Philip loaded the Flemish people with imposts. They rose in revolt, and Robert d'Artois, Philip's brother, met with a disastrous defeat in a battle with the Flemish troops at Courtrai, in 1302. The Flemish burghers proved themselves too strong for the royal troops. Flanders was restored to its count, four towns being retained by France.
CONFLICT OF PHILIP IV. AND BONIFACE VIII.—The expenses of Philip, in the support of his army and for other purposes, were enormous. The old feudal revenues were wholly insufficient for the new methods of government. To supply himself with money, he not only levied onerous taxes on his subjects, and practiced ingenious extortion upon the Jews, but he resorted again and again to the device of debasing the coin. His resolution to tax the property of the Church brought him into a controversy, momentous in its results, with Pope Boniface VIII.
Boniface's idea of papal prerogative was fully as exalted as that formerly held by Hildebrand and Innocent III. But he had less prudence and self-restraint, and the temper of the times was now altered. If Philip was sustained by the Roman law and its interpreters, whose counsels he gladly followed, Boniface, on the other hand, could lean upon the system of ecclesiastical or canon law, which had long been growing up in Europe, and of which the Canonists were the professional expounders. The vast wealth of the clergy had led to enactments for keeping it within bounds, like the statute of mortmain in England (1279) forbidding the giving of land to religious bodies without license from the king. The word mortmain meant dead hand, and was applied to possessors of land, especially ecclesiastical corporations, that could not alienate it. The jurisdiction of ecclesiastical courts, which kings, because they happened to have a less liking for feudal law, had often favored, had now come to be another great matter of contention. In 1296 Boniface VIII., in the bull clericis laicos,—so named, like other papal edicts, from the opening words,—forbade the imposition of extraordinary taxes upon the clergy without the consent of the Holy See. Philip responded by forbidding foreigners to sojourn in France, which was equivalent to driving out of the country the Roman priests and those who brought in the obnoxious bull. At the same time he forbade money to be carried out of France. This last prohibition cut off contributions to Rome. The king asserted the importance of the laity in the Church, as well as of the clergy, and the right of the king of France to take charge of his own realm. There was a seeming reconciliation for a time, through concessions on the side of the Pope; but the strife broke out afresh in 1301. Philip arrested Bernard Saisset, a bold legate of the Pope. Boniface poured forth a stream of complaints against Philip (1301), and went so far as to summon the French clergy to a council at Rome for the settlement of all disorders in France. The king then appealed to the French nation. On the 10th of April, 1302, he assembled in the Church of Notre Dame, at Paris, a body which, for the first time, contained the deputies of the universities and of the towns, and for this reason is considered to have been the first meeting of the States General, The clergy, the barons, the burghers, sided cordially with the king. The Pope then published the famous bull, Unam Sanctam, in which the subjection of the temporal power to the spiritual is proclaimed with the strongest emphasis. Boniface then excommunicated Philip, and was preparing to depose him, and to hand over his kingdom to the emperor, Albert I.
DEATH OF BONIFACE VIII.—Meantime Philip had assembled anew the States General (1303). The legists lent their counsel and active support. It was proposed to the king to convoke a general council of the Church, and to summon the Pope before it. William of Nogaret, a great lawyer in the service of Philip, was directed to lodge with Boniface this appeal to a council, and to publish it at Rome. With Sciarra Colonna, between whose family and the Pope there was a mortal feud, Nogaret, attended also by several hundred hired soldiers, entered Anagni, where Boniface was then staying. The two messengers heaped upon him the severest reproaches, and Colonna is said to have struck the old pontiff in the face with his mailed hand. The French were driven out of the town by the people; but from the indignities which he had suffered, and the anger and shame consequent upon them, Boniface shortly afterwards died.
THE "BABYLONIAN CAPTIVITY" (1309-1379).—From the date of the events just narrated, the pontifical authority sank, and the secular authority of sovereigns and nations was in the ascendant. After the short pontificate of Benedict XL, who did what he could to reconcile the ancient but estranged allies, France and the Papacy, a French prelate, the Archbishop of Bordeaux, was made pope under the name of Clement V., he having previously engaged to comply with the wishes of Philip. While the Papacy continued subordinate to the French king, its moral influence in other parts of Christendom was of necessity reduced. Clement V, was crowned at Lyons in 1305, and in 1309 established himself at Avignon, a possession of the Holy See on the borders of France. After him there followed at Avignon seven popes who were subject to French influence (1309-1376). It is the period in the annals of the Papacy which is called the "Babylonian captivity." Philip remained implacable. He was determined to secure the condemnation of Boniface VIII., even after his death. Clement V. had no alternative but to summon a council, which was held at Vienne in 1311, when Boniface was declared to have been orthodox, at the same time that Philip was shielded from ecclesiastical censure or reproach.
SUPPRESSION OF THE KNIGHTS TEMPLARS.—One of the demands which Philip had made of Clement V., and a demand which the council had to grant, was the condemnation of the order of Knights Templars, whose vast wealth Philip coveted. On the 13th of October, 1307, the Templars were arrested overall France,—an act which evinces both the power of Philip, and his injustice. They were charged with secret immoralities, and with practices involving impiety. Provincial councils were called together to decree the judgment preordained by the king. The Templars were examined under torture, and many of them were burned at the stake. A large number of those who were put to death revoked the confessions which had been extorted from them by bodily suffering. Individuals may have been guilty of some of the charges, but there is no warrant for such a verdict against the entire order. The order was abolished by Clement V.
LAW STUDIES: MERCENARY TROOPS.—During the reign of Philip the Fair, it was ordained that Parliament should sit twice every year at Paris (1303). A university for the study of law was founded at Orleans. The king needed soldiers as well as lawyers. Mercenary troops were beginning to take the place of feudal bands. Philip brought the Genoese galleys against the ships of Flanders.
THE THREE SONS OF PHILIP: THE "SALIC LAW."—Three sons of Philip reigned after him. Louis X. (1314-1316) was induced to take part in an aristocratic reaction, in behalf of "the good old customs," against the legists; but he continued to emancipate the serfs. He was not succeeded by his daughter, but by his brother. This precedent was soon transformed into the "Salic law" that only heirs in the male line could succeed to the throne. The rule was really the result of the "genealogical accident" that for three hundred and forty-one years, or since the election of Hugh Capet, every French king had been succeeded by his son. In several cases the son had been crowned in the lifetime of the father. Thus the principle of heredity, and of heredity in the male line, had taken root.
Under Philip V. and his successor, Charles IV. (1322-1328), there was cruel persecution of the Jews, and many people suffered death on the charge of sorcery.
EDWARD I. OF ENGLAND (1272-1307): CONQUEST OF WALES: WILLIAM WALLACE.—Edward, who was in the Holy Land when his father died, was a gallant knight and an able ruler,—"the most brilliant monarch of the fourteenth century." Llywelyn, prince of Wales, having refused to render the oath due from a vassal, was forced to yield. When a rebellion broke out several years later, Wales was conquered, and the leader of the rebellion was executed (1283). Thus Wales was joined to England; and the king gave to his son the title of "Prince of Wales," which the eldest son of the sovereign of England has since worn. Edward was for many years at war with Scotland, which now included the Gaelic-speaking people of the Highlands, and the English-speaking people of the Lowlands. The king of England had some claim to be their suzerain, a claim which the Scots were slow to acknowledge. The old line of Scottish princes of the Celtic race died out. Alexander III. fell with his horse over a cliff on the coast of Fife. Two competitors for the throne arose, both of them of Norman descent,—John Baliol and Robert Bruce. The Scots made Edward an umpire, to decide which of them should reign. He decided for Baliol (1292), stipulating that the suzerainty should rest with himself. When he called upon Baliol to aid him against France, the latter renounced his allegiance, and declared war. He was conquered at Dunbar (1296), and made prisoner. The strongholds in Scotland fell into the hands of the English. The country appeared to be subjugated, but the Scots were ill-treated by the English. William Wallace put himself at the head of a band of followers, defeated them near Stirling in 1292, and kept up the contest for several years with heroic energy. At length Edward, through the skill acquired by the English in the use of the bow, was the victor at Falkirk in 1298. Wallace, having been betrayed into his hands, was brutally executed in London (1305).
Edward carried off from Scone the stone on which the Scottish kings had always been crowned. It is now in Westminster Abbey, under the coronation chair of the sovereign of Great Britain. There was a legend, that on this same stone the patriarch Jacob laid his head when he beheld angels ascending and descending at Bethel. Where that stone was, it was believed that Scottish kings would reign. This was held to be verified when English kings of Scottish descent inherited the crown.
ROBERT BRUCE.—The struggle for Scottish independence was taken up by Robert Bruce, grandson of the Bruce who had claimed the crown. His plan to gain the throne was disclosed by John Comyn, nephew of Baliol: this Comyn young Bruce stabbed in a church at Dumfries. He was then crowned king at Scone, and summoned the Scots to his standard. The English king sent his son Edward to conquer him; but the king himself, before he could reach Scotland, died.
PARLIAMENT: THE JEWS.—Under Edward, the form of government by king, lords, and commons was firmly established. Parliament met in two distinct houses. Against his inclination he swore to the "Confirmation of the Charters," by which he engaged not to impose taxes without the consent of Parliament. The statute of mortmain has been referred to already. The clergy paid their taxes to the king when they found, that, unless they did so, the judges would not protect them. Edward had protected the Jews, who, in England as elsewhere, were often falsely accused of horrible crimes, and against whom there existed, on account of their religion, a violent prejudice. At length he yielded to the popular hatred, and banished them from the kingdom, permitting them, however, to take with them their property.
Edward II. (1307-1327).—Edward II., a weak and despicable sovereign, cared for nothing but pleasure.
He was under the influence of the son of a Gascon gentleman, Peter of Gaveston, whom, contrary to the injunction of his father, he recalled from banishment. Gaveston was made regent while the king was in France, whither he went, in 1308, to marry Isabel, daughter of Philip the Fair. After his return, the disgust of the barons at the conduct of Gaveston, and at the courses into which Edward was led by him, was such, that in 1310 they forced the king to give the government for a year to a committee of peers, by whom Gaveston was once more banished. When he came back, he was captured by the barons, and beheaded in 1312.
BRUCE: BANNOCKBURN: DEPOSITION OF EDWARD II.—After various successes, Robert Bruce laid siege to Stirling in 1314. This led to a temporary reconciliation between the king and the barons. Edward set out for Scotland with an army of a hundred thousand men. A great battle took place at Bannockburn, where Bruce, with a greatly inferior force of foot-soldiers, totally defeated the English. He had dug pits in front of his army, which he had covered with turf resting on sticks. The effect was to throw the English cavalry into confusion. Against the Despencers, father and son, the next favorites of Edward, the barons were not at first successful; but in 1326 Edward's queen, Isabel, who had joined his enemies, returned from France with young Edward, Prince of Wales, and at the head of foreign soldiers and exiles. The barons joined her: the Despencers were taken and executed. The king was driven to resign the crown. He was carried from one castle to another, and finally was secretly murdered at Berkeley Castle, by Roger Mortimer, in whose custody he had been placed.
On the suppression of the Knights Templars by Pope Clement V., their property in England was confiscated. The Temple, which was their abode in London, became afterwards the possession of two societies of lawyers, the Inner and Middle Temple.
THE HUNDRED YEARS' WAR:
PERIOD I. (TO THE PEACE OF BRETIGNY. 1360).
ORIGIN OF THE WAR: EDWARD III. OF ENGLAND (1327-1377).—England and France entered on one of the longest wars of which there is any record in history. It lasted, with only a few short periods of intermission, for a hundred years. At the outset, there were two main causes of strife. First, the king of France naturally coveted the English territory around Bordeaux,—Guienne, whose people were French. Secondly, the English would not allow Flanders —whose manufacturing towns, as Ghent and Bruges, were the best customers for their wool—to pass under French control. Independently of these grounds of dispute, Edward III. laid claim to the French crown, for the reason that his mother was the sister of the last king, while Philip VI. (1328-1350), then reigning, was only his cousin. The French stood by the "Salic law," but a much stronger feeling was their determination not to be ruled by an Englishman.
Edward III. claimed the throne of France in right of his mother, Isabel, the daughter of Philip IV. The peers and barons of France, on the whole, for political reasons, decided that the crown should be given to Philip (VI.). his nephew, of the house of Valois, a younger line of the Capets. Edward rendered to him, in 1328, feudal homage for the duchy of Guienne, but took the first favorable occasion to re-assert his claim to the throne. Robert II., Count of Artois, was obliged to fly from France on a charge of having poisoned his aunt and her daughters, as a part of his unsuccessful attempt to get possession of the fiefs left to them by his grandsire. He went over to England from Brussels, and stirred up the young English king to attack Philip (1334). David Bruce, whom Edward sought to drive out of Scotland, received aid from France. Philip ordered Louis, Count of Flanders, between whom and the burghers there was no affection, to expel the English from his states. James Van Arteveld, a brewer of Ghent, convinced the people that it was better to get rid of the count, and ally themselves with the English. Edward even then hesitated about entering into the conflict, but the demands and measures of Philip showed that he was bent on war. The princes in the neighborhood of Flanders, and the emperor Louis V., to whom the Pope at Avignon was hostile, declared on the side of Edward.
The following tables (in part repeated, in a modified form, from previous tables, and here connected) will illustrate the narrative:—
THE HOUSE OF VALOIS.
CHARLES, Count of Valois (d. 1325), younger son of PHILIP III, KING OF FRANCE. (See below.) + PHILIP VI, 1328-1350. + JOHN the Good, 1350-1364. + CHARLES V the Wise, 1364-1380. + CHARLES VI, 1380-1422. + CHARLES VII, 1422-1461. + LOUIS XI, 1461-1483. + CHARLES VIII, 1483-1498. + Jeanne, m + Duke of Orleans, afterwards LOUIS XII, 1498-1515. + Charles, Duke of Orleans, (d. 1467) + Louis, Duke of Orleans (assassinated 1407), founder of the House of Valois-Orleans. + Louis, Duke of Anjou, founder of the second Royal House of Naples. + John, Duke of Berry. + Philip, Duke of Burgundy (d. 1404).
* * * * *
PHILIP III, 1270-1285. + PHILIP IV, 1285-1314. + Isabel, m. Edward II of England + Edward II of England. + Edward III of England. + PHILIP V, 1316-1322. + CHARLES IV, 1322-1328. + Charles, Count of Valois (d. 1325), m. (1), Margaret of Naples. + PHILIP VI, 1328-1350.
EARLY EVENTS OF THE WAR.—Hostilities began in 1337. Edward entered France, and then for the first time publicly set up his claim to be king of France, quartering the lilies on his shield; and he was accepted by the Flemish as their suzerain. The first battle was on the sea near Fort Sluys (1340), where Edward won a victory, and thirty thousand Frenchmen were slain or drowned. This established the supremacy of the English on the water. The fleet of the French was made up of hired Castilian and Genoese vessels. In 1341 the conflict was renewed on account of a disputed succession in Brittany, in which the "Salic law" was this time on the English side.
Jane of Penthievre was supported by Philip; while Jane of Montfort, an intrepid woman who was protected by Edward, contended for the rights of her husband. This war, consisting of the sieges of fortresses and towns, was kept up for twenty-four years.
BATTLE OF CRECY: CALAIS: BRITTANY.—In 1346 the Earl of Derby made an attack in the south of France, while Edward, with his young son Edward, the Prince of Wales, landed in Normandy, which he devastated. King Edward advanced to the neighborhood of Paris; but the want of provisions caused him to change his course, and to march in the direction of Flanders. His situation now became perilous. He was followed by Philip at the head of a powerful army; and, had there been more energy and promptitude on the side of the French, the English forces might have been destroyed. Edward was barely able, by taking advantage of a ford at low tide, to cross the Somme, and to take up an advantageous position at Crecy. There he was attacked with imprudent haste by the army of the French. The chivalry of France went down before the solid array of English archers, and Edward gained an overwhelming victory. Philip's brother Charles, count of Alencon, fell, with numerous other princes and nobles, and thirty thousand soldiers (1346). In the battle, the English king's eldest son —Edward, the Black Prince as he was called from the color of his armor—was hard pressed; but the father would send no aid, saying, "Let the boy win his spurs." It was the custom to give the spurs to the full-fledged knight. After a siege, Calais, the port so important to the English, was captured by them. The deputies of the citizens, almost starved, came out with cords in their hands, to signify their willingness to be hanged. The French were driven out, and Calais was an English town for more than two centuries. France was defeated on all sides. The Scots, too, were vanquished; and David Bruce was made prisoner (1346). In Brittany the French party was prostrate. A truce between the kings was concluded for ten months.
THE "BLACK DEATH."—In the midst of these calamities, the fearful pestilence swept over France, called the "Black Death." It came from Egypt, possibly from farther east. In Florence three-fifths of the inhabitants perished by it. From Italy it passed over to Provence, and thence moved northward to Paris, spreading destruction in its path. It reached England, and there it is thought by some that one-half of the population perished (1348-1349).
ENGLISH AND FRENCH ARMIES.—At this time, when the power of France was so reduced, the king acquired Montpellier from James of Aragon, and the Dauphine of Vienne by purchase from the last Dauphin, Humbert II., who entered a monastery. Dauphin became the title of the heir of the French crown. It was constantly evident how deep a root the royal power had struck into the soil of France. At times, when the kingdom was almost gone, the kingship survived. But, unhappily, there was no union of orders and classes. Chivalry looked with disdain upon the common people. The poor Genoese archers who had fought with the French at Crecy, and whose bow-strings were wet by a shower, were despised by the gentlemen on horseback. In the French armies, there was no effective force but the cavalry, and there was a fatal lack of subordination and discipline. In England, on the contrary, under kings with more control over the feudal aristocracy, and from the combination of lords and common people in resistance to kings, the English armies had acquired union and discipline. The bow in the hands of the English yeoman was a most effective weapon. The English infantry were more than a match for the brave and impetuous cavaliers of France. At Crecy the entire English force fought on foot. Cannon were just beginning to come into use. This brought a new advantage to the foot-soldier. But it seems probable that cannon were employed at Crecy.
BATTLE OF POITIERS: INSURRECTION IN PARIS.—Philip left his crown to his son, John (II.) of Normandy, called "the Good" (1350-1364); but the epithet (le Bon) signifies not the morally worthy, but rather, the prodigal, gay and extravagant. He was a passionate, rash, and cruel king. His relations with Charles "the Bad," king of Navarre,—who, however, was the better man of the two,—brought disasters upon France. This Charles II. of Navarre (1349-1387) was the grandson, on his mother's side, of Louis X. of France. John had withheld from him promised fiefs. Later he had thrown him into prison. Philip of Navarre, the brother of Charles, helped the English against John in Normandy. Meanwhile the Prince of Wales (the Black Prince) ravaged the provinces near Guienne. The national spirit in France was roused by the peril. The States General granted large supplies of men and money, but only on the condition that the treasure should be dispensed under their superintendence, and that they should be assembled every year. The army of the Black Prince was small, and he advanced so far that he was in imminent danger; but the attack on him at Poitiers (1356), by the vastly superior force of King John, was made with so much impetuosity and so little prudence that the French, as at Crecy, were completely defeated. Their cavalry charged up a lane, not knowing that the English archers were behind the hedges on either side. Their dead to the number of eleven thousand lay on the field. The king, and with him a large part of the nobility, were taken prisoners. John was taken to England (1357). From the moment of his capture he was treated with the utmost courtesy. The French peasantry, however, suffered greatly; and in France the name of Englishman for centuries afterwards was held in abhorrence.
INSURRECTION IN PARIS.—The incapacity of the nobles to save the kingdom called out the energies of the class counted as plebeian,—the middle class between the nobles and serfs. It was not without competent leaders, chief of whom were Robert le Coq, bishop of Laon, and councilor of Parliament; and Etienne Marcel, an able man, provost of the traders, or head of the municipality of Paris. The States General at Paris, at the instigation of such as these, required of the Dauphin the punishment of the principal officers of the king, the release of the King of Navarre, and the establishment of a council made up from the three orders, for the direction of all the important affairs of government. The States General, representing the South, at Toulouse voted a levy of men and means without conditions; but the Dauphin Charles was obliged, at the next meeting of the States General of Paris (1357), to yield to these and other additional demands. The king, however, a prisoner in England, at the Dauphin's request refused to ratify the compact. The agitators at Paris set the King of Navarre free, and urged him to assert his right to the throne. Marcel and the Parisian multitude wore the party-colored hood of red and blue, the civic colors of Paris. They killed two of the Dauphin's confidential advisers, the marshals of Champagne and Normandy. A reaction set in against Marcel, and in favor of the royal cause. A civil war was the result.
REVOLT OF THE JACQUERIE.—At this time, there burst forth an insurrection, called the Jacquerie, of the peasants of the provinces,—Jacques Bonhomme being a familiar nickname of the peasantry. It was attended with frightful cruelties: many of the feudal chateaux were destroyed, and all of their inmates killed. The land was given over to anarchy and bloodshed. Marcel made different attempts to effect a combination with Charles of Navarre; but the revolutionary leader was assassinated, and the Dauphin Charles, having destroyed opposition in Paris, made peace with the King of Navarre, who had kept up in the provinces the warfare against him. The movement of Marcel, with whatever crimes and errors belonged to it, was "a brave and loyal effort to stem anarchy, and to restore good government." By its failure, the hope of a free parliamentary government in France was dashed in pieces.
TREATY OF BRETIGNY (1360).—The captive king, John, made a treaty with Edward, by which he ceded to the English at least one-half of his dominions. The Dauphin assembled the States General, and repudiated the compact. Edward III., in 1359, again invaded France with an immense force. But Charles prudently avoided a general engagement, and Edward found it difficult to get food for his troops. He concluded with France, in 1360, the treaty of Bretigny, by which the whole province of Aquitaine, with several other lordships, was ceded to Edward, clear of all feudal obligations. Edward, in turn, renounced his claim to the French crown, as well as to Normandy, and to all other former possessions of the Plantagenets north of the Loire. The King was to be set at liberty on the payment of the first installment of his ransom.
THE HUNDRED YEARS' WAR:
PERIOD II. (TO THE PEACE OF TROYES, 1420).
DUCHY OF BURGUNDY.—There was an opportunity to repair a part of these losses. In 1361 the ducal house of Burgundy became extinct, and the fief reverted to the crown. But John gave it to his son, Philip the Bold, who became the founder of the Burgundian branch of the house of Valois. Philip married the heiress of Flanders, and thus founded the power of the house of Burgundy in the Netherlands.
DU GUESCLIN: CONTEST IN SPAIN.—The provinces of France were overrun and plundered by soldiers of both parties, under the names of routiers (men of the road) and great companies. King John returned to England, because one of his sons, left as a hostage, had fled. There his captivity was made pleasant to him, but he died soon after.
Charles V., or Charles the Wise (1364-1380), undertook to restore prosperity to the French kingdom. He reformed the coin, the debasement of which was a dire grievance to the burghers. Against the free lances in the service of Charles of Navarre, the king sent bands of mercenary soldiers under Du Guesclin, a valiant gentleman of Brittany, who became one of the principal heroes of the time. The war lasted for a year, and the King of Navarre made peace. In Brittany, Du Guesclin was taken prisoner by the English party and the adventurers who fought with them. The king secured his release by paying his ransom; and he led the companies into Spain to help the cause of Henry of Transtamare, who had a dispute for the throne of Castile with Peter the Cruel. The Black Prince supported Peter, and, for a time, with success. In 1369 Henry was established on the throne, and with him the French party. The principal benefit of this Spanish contest was the deliverance of France from the companies of freebooters.
ADVANTAGES GAINED BY THE FRENCH.—King Charles reformed the internal administration of his kingdom, and at length felt himself ready to begin again the conflict with England. Edward III. was old. The Black Prince was ill and gloomy, and his Aquitanian subjects disliked the supercilious ways of the English. Charles declared war (1369). The English landed at Calais. But the cities were defended by their strong walls; and the French army, under the Duke of Burgundy, in pursuance of the settled policy of the king, refused to meet the enemy in a pitched battle. The next year (1370) they appeared again, and once more, in 1373, both times with the same result. The Duke of Anjou reconquered the larger part of Aquitaine. Du Guesclin was made constable of the French army, and thus placed above the nobles by birth. The English fleet was destroyed by the Castilian vessels before Rochelle (1372). Du Guesclin drove the Duke of Montfort, who was protected by the English, out of Brittany. In 1375 a truce was made, which continued until the death of Edward III. (1377). Then Charles renewed the war, and was successful on every side. Most of the English possessions in France were won back. The last exploit of the Black Prince had been the sacking of Limoges (1370). After this cruel proceeding, broken in health, he returned to England.
STATE OF ENGLAND.—The Black Prince, after his return, when his father was old and feeble, did much to save the country from misrule, so that his death was deplored. The Parliament at this time was called "the Good." It turned out of office friends of John of Gaunt,—or of Ghent (the place where he was born),—the third son of Edward. They were unworthy men, whom John had caused to be appointed. At this time occurred the first instance of impeachment of the king's ministers by the Commons. When the Black Prince died, his brother regained the chief power, and his influence was mischievous. During Edward's reign, Flemish weavers were brought over to England, and the manufacture of fine woolen cloths was thus introduced.
JOHN WICKLIFFE.—In this reign the English showed a strong disposition to curtail the power of the popes in England. When Pope Urban V., in 1366, called for the payment of the arrears of King John's tribute, Parliament refused to grant it, on the ground that no one had the right to subject the kingdom to a foreigner. It was in the reign of Edward III. that John Wickliffe became prominent. He took the side of the secular or the parish clergy in their conflict with the mendicant orders,—"the Begging Friars," as they were styled. He also advocated the cause of the king against the demands of the Pope. He contended that the clergy had too much wealth and power. He adopted doctrines, at that time new, which were not behind the later Protestant, or even Puritan, opinions. He translated the Bible into English. He was protected by Edward III. and by powerful nobles, and he died in peace in his parish at Lutterworth, in 1384; but, after his death, his bones were taken up, and burned. His followers bore the nickname of Lollards, which is probably derived from a word that means to sing, and thus was equivalent to psalm-singers.
RICHARD II. (1377-1399): THE PEASANT INSURRECTION: DEPOSITION OF RICHARD.—Richard, the young son of the Black Prince, had an unhappy reign. At first he was ruled by his uncles, especially by John of Gaunt, Duke of Lancaster. Four years after his accession, a great insurrection of the peasants broke out, from discontent under the yoke of villanage, and the pressure of taxes. The first leader in Essex was a priest, who took the name of Jack Straw. In the previous reign, the poor had found reason to complain bitterly of the landlords; but their lot was now even harder. When the insurgents reached Blackheath, they numbered a hundred thousand men. There a priest named John Ball harangued them on the equality of rights, from the text,—
When Adam delved, and Eve span, Who was then a gentleman?
Young Richard managed them with so much tact, and gave them such fair promises, that they dispersed. One of their most fierce leaders, Wat Tyler, whose daughter had been insulted by a tax-gatherer, was stabbed during a parley which he was holding with the king.
There was a Gloucester party—a party led by his youngest uncle, the Duke of Gloucester—which gave Richard much trouble; but he became strong enough to send the duke to Calais, where, it was thought, he was put to death. In 1398 he banished two noblemen who had given him, at a former day, dire offense. One of them was Thomas Mowbray, Duke of Norfolk; the other was Henry of Bolingbroke, Duke of Hereford, afterwards called Duke of Lancaster, son of John of Gaunt. When John of Gaunt died, Richard seized his lands. In 1399, when Richard was in Ireland, Bolingbroke landed, with a few men-at-arms and with Archbishop Arundel; and, being joined by the great family of Percy in the North, he obliged Richard to resign the crown. He was deposed by Parliament for misgovernment. Not long after, he was murdered. Lancaster was made king under the name of Henry IV. It was under Richard that the statute of praemunire (of 1353) was renewed, and severe penalties were imposed on all who should procure excommunications or sentences against the king or the realm.
THE ENGLISH LANGUAGE AND LITERATURE.—In the course of the reign of Edward III., the French language, which had come in with the Normans, ceased to be the speech of fashion; and the English, as altered by the loss of inflections and by the introduction of foreign words, came into general use. The English ceased to speak the language of those who were now held to be national enemies. In 1362 the use of English was established in the courts of law. The Old English ceased to be written or spoken correctly. The Latin still continued to be familiar to the clergy and to the learned. William Langland wrote a poem entitled the Vision of Piers Plowman (1362). Pierce the Plowman's Crede is a poem by another author. The two principal poets are Chaucer and Gower, both of whom wrote the new English in use at the court. Chaucer's great poem, the Canterbury Tales, is the latest and most remarkable of his works.
HENRY IV. (1399-1413): TWO REBELLIONS: THE LOLLARDS.-By right of birth, the crown would have fallen to Roger Mortimer, Earl of March, the grandson of Lionel, Duke of Clarence, Lionel having been a son of Edward III., older than John of Gaunt. But there was no law compelling Parliament to give the throne to the nearest of kin. So it fell to the house of Lancaster.
Henry had to confront two rebellions. One was that of the Welsh, under Owen Glendower, which he long tried to put down, and which was gradually overcome by Henry, Prince of Wales, the story of whose wild courses in his youth was perhaps exaggerated. The other rebellion was that of the powerful Northumberland family of the Percys, undertaken in behalf of Richard if he was alive,—for it was disputed whether or not he had really died,—and if not alive, in behalf of the Earl of March. The Percys joined Glendower. They were beaten in a bloody battle near Shrewsbury, in 1403, where Northumberland's son "Hotspur" (Harry Percy) was slain. While praying at the shrine of St. Edward in Westminster, the king was seized with a fit, and died in the "Jerusalem Chamber" of the Abbot. Under Henry the proceedings against heretics were sharpened; but the Commons at length, from their jealousy of the clergy, sought, although in vain, a mitigation of the statute. In the next reign, the Lollards, who were numerous, had a leader in Sir John Oldcastle, called Lord Cobham, who once escaped from the Tower, but was captured, after some years, and put to death as a traitor and heretic. Whether he aimed at a Lollard revolution or not, is uncertain. The Lollards were persecuted, not only as heretics, but also as desiring to free the serfs from their bondage to the landlords.
THE BURGUNDIANS AND ARMAGNACS.—In the last days of Charles V. of France, he tried in vain to absorb Brittany. Flanders and Languedoc revolted against him. The aspect of public affairs was clouded when Charles VI. (1380-1422), who was not twelve years old, became the successor to the throne. His uncles, the Dukes of Anjou, Berri, and Burgundy, contended for the regency. Their quarrels distracted the kingdom. A contest arose with the Flemish cities under the leadership of Philip Van Artevelde; but they were defeated by the French nobles at Roosebeke, and Arterielde was slain. This victory of the nobles over the cities was followed by the repression of the municipal leaders and lawyers in France. Two factions sprang up,—the Burgundians and the Armagnacs.
Margaret, the wife of the Duke of Burgundy, received Flanders by inheritance, on the death of her father the Count (1384). The king was beginning to free himself from the control of the factions when he suddenly went mad. Thenceforth there was a struggle in France for supremacy between the adherents of the dukes of Burgundy and the adherents of the house of Orleans. The latter came to be called Armagnacs (1410), after the Count d'Armagnac, the father-in-law of Charles, Duke of Orleans. The strength of the Burgundians was in the North and in the cities. They adhered to Urban VI., the pope at Rome, in opposition to the Avignon pope, Clement VII.; for these were the days of the papal schism. They were also friends of the house of Lancaster in England,—of Henry IV. and Henry V. The strength of the Armagnacs was in the South. At the outset, it was a party of the court and of the nobles: later it became a national party. Louis, Duke of Orleans, was treacherously assassinated by a partisan of the Burgundians (1407). This act fomented the strife.
BATTLE OF AGINCOURT: TREATY OF TROYES (1420).—It was in 1392 that the king partially lost his reason. For the rest of his life, except at rare intervals, he was either imbecile or frenzied. By the division of counsels and a series of fatalities, gigantic preparations for the invasion of England had come to naught (1386-1388). Henry V. of England (1413-1422) concluded that the best way to divert his nobles from schemes of rebellion was to make war across the Channel. Accordingly he demanded his "inheritance" according to the treaty of Bretigny, together with Normandy. On the refusal of this demand, he renewed the claim of his greatgrandfather to the crown of France, although he was not the eldest descendant of Edward III. Henry invaded France at the head of fifty thousand men. By his artillery and mines he took Harfleur, but not until after a terrible siege in which thousands of his troops perished by sickness. On his way towards Calais, with not more than nine thousand men, he found his way barred at Agincourt by the Armagnac forces, more than fifty thousand in number, comprising the chivalry of France (1415). In the great battle that ensued, the horses of the French floundered in the mud, and horse and rider were destroyed by the English bowmen. The French suffered another defeat like the defeats of Crecy and Poitiers. They lost eleven thousand men, and among them some of the noblest men in France. France was falling to pieces. Rouen was besieged by Henry, and compelled by starvation to surrender (1419). The fury of factions continued to rage. There were dreadful massacres by the mob in Paris. The Duke of Burgundy, John the Fearless (Jean sans Peur), was murdered in 1419 by the opposite faction. The young Duke Philip, and even the Queen of France, Isabella, were now found on the Anglo-Burgundian side. By the Treaty of Troyes, in 1420, Catherine, the daughter of Charles VI., was given in marriage to Henry V., and he was made the heir of the crown of France when the insane king, Charles VI., should die. Henry was made regent of France. The whole country north of the Loire was in his hands. The Dauphin Charles retired to the provinces beyond that river.
THE HUNDRED YEARS' WAR:
PERIOD III. (TO THE END, 1463).
FRANCE IN 1422.—Both Henry and Charles VI. died in 1422. The Duke of Bedford was made regent in France, ruling in the name of his infant nephew (Henry VI.). Charles VII. (1422-1461) was proclaimed king by the Armagnacs south of the Loire. His situation was desperate, but he represented the national cause. Bedford laid siege to Orleans, the last bulwark of the royal party. The English were weakened, however, by the withdrawal of the Duke of Burgundy and his forces.
JOAN OF ARC.—When the national cause was at this low point, Providence raised up a deliverer in the person of a pure, simple-hearted, and pious maiden of Domremy in Lorraine, seventeen years of age, Jeanne Dare by name (the name Joan of Arc being merely a mistake in orthography). The tales of suffering that she had heard deeply moved her. She felt herself called of Heaven to liberate France. She fancied that angels' voices bade her undertake this holy mission. Her own undoubting faith aroused faith in others. Commissioned by the king, she mounted a horse, and, with a banner in her hand, joined the French soldiers, whom she inspired with fresh courage. They forced the English to give up the siege of Orleans, and to march away. Other defeats of the English followed. The Maid of Orleans took Charles to Rheims, and stood by him at his coronation. The English and Burgundians rallied their strength. Joan of Arc was ill supported, and was made prisoner at Compeigne by the Burgundians. They delivered her to the English. She was subjected to grievous indignities, was condemned as a witch, and finally burned as a relapsed heretic at Rouen (1431). The last word she uttered was "Jesus." Her character was without a taint. In her soul, the spirit of religion and of patriotism burned with a pure flame. A heroine and a saint combined, she died "a victim to the ingratitude of her friends, and the brutality of her foes."
THE ENGLISH DRIVEN OUT—In 1435 the Duke of Burgundy was reconciled to Charles VII., and joined the cause of France. The generals of Charles gained possession of one after another of the provinces. During a truce of two years, Henry VI. of England (1422-1461) married Margaret of Anjou, the daughter of King Rene. Henry was of a gentle temper, but lacked prudence and vigor. The king of France and the dauphin began the organization of a standing army, which greatly increased the military strength of the country (1439). In 1449 the war with England was renewed. With the defeat of the English, and the death of their commander, Talbot, in 1453, the contest of a century came to an end. All that England retained across the Channel was Calais with Havre and Guines Castle. France was desolated by all this fruitless strife. Some of the most fertile portions of its territory were reduced to a desert, "given up to wolves, and traversed only by the robber and the free-lance."
REBELLION of "JACK CADE."—The peasants in England were now free from serfdom. Under Henry VI. occurred a formidable insurrection of the men of Kent, who marched to London led by John Cade, who called himself John Mortimer. They complained of bad government and extortionate taxes. One main cause of the rising was the successes of the French. The condition of the laboring class had much improved. The insurgents were defeated by the citizens, and their leader was slain. In this reign began the long "Wars of the Roses," or the contest of the houses of York and Lancaster for the throne.
MILAN.—THE VISCONTI AND SFORZA.
Matteo I, VISCONTI (nephew of Archbishop Otto), Lord of Milan, 1295-1332. + Stefano (d. 1327). + Matteo II, 1354-1355. + Bernabo, 1354-1385. + Catharine, m. (2), + GIAN GALEAZZO, 1378-1402 (first duke, 1396). + GIOVANNI MARIA, 1402-1412. + FILIPPO MARIA, 1412-1447. + Bianca Maria. m. + FRANCESCO SFORZA, 1450-1466 + GALEAZZO MARIA, 1466-1476, m. Bona, daughter of Louis, Duke of Savoy. + GIAN GALEAZZO, 1476-1494. + LUDOVICO Il Moro, 1494-1500, 3, (d. 1510) m. Beatrice d'Este. + MASSAMILLANO, 1512-1515 (d. 1530) + FRANCESCO MARIA, , 1521-1535. m. Christina, daughter of Christian II of Denmark (1) Jacopo (Muzio) Attendolo di Cotignola, called Sforza. + Valentina,  m. Louis, Duke of Orleans. + Charles, Duke of Orleans. + LOUIS XII of France, Duke of Milan 1500-1512. + Galeazzo II, 1354-1378.
1 The Milanese territory was divided between the three brothers, and united on the death of Bernabo.
2 Hence the French claim to Milan.
3 Louis XII of France took Ludovico prisoner, and held Milan 1500-1512.
4 Puppet dukes. Milan being, in fact, the subject of contention between France and the Hapsburgs.
[Abridged from George's Genealogical Tables.]
THE THREE NORTHERN KINGDOMS BEFORE THE UNION OF CALMAR.
[D. means King of Denmark; N., King of Norway; S., King of Sweden.]
HACO IV, N. (d. 1263). + MAGNUS VI, N., 1263-1281. + ERIC II, N., 1281-1299. + HACO V, N., 1299-1320. MAGNUS I, S., 1279-1290. + BERGER, S., 1290-1320 (deposed; d. 1326) m. + Martha. + CHRISTOPHER II, D., 1320-1340. + WALDEMAR III, D., 1346-1375. + Margaret, D. N., 1387, S., 1388 (d. 1412). m. HACO VI, N. (d. 1380) + OLAF VI, D. 1376, N. 1380 (d. 1387). + ERIC VI, D., 1286-1320. ERIC V, D., 1250-1286. + Eric. m. + Ingeburga + Magnus VII (II), N. S., 1320-1365 (deposed). + Euphemia. m. Albert, Duke of Mecklenburg, + Albert, S., 1365-1388 (deposed). + Henry, m. Ingeburga, daughter of Waldemar III, D. + Mary, m. Wratislas of Pomerania. + ERIC, D. N. S., 1412-1439 (deposed; d. 1459). + Catharine, m. John, son of Emperor Robert. + CHRISTOPHER, D. N. S. (d. 1448). m. (1) Dorothea, daughter of John Alchymista, Margrave of Brandenburg m. (2) CHRISTIAN I, D. N. S. + HACO VI, N. (d. 1380)
1 Elected to Sweden in opposition to Haco VI; deposed by Margaret.
2 Having united all three kingdoms in her own person, framed formal Union of Calmar, 1397.
3 Elected king on death of Christopher, whose widow he married; said to be descended from Eric V of Denmark.
[Abridged from George's Genealogical Tables.]
CHAPTER II. GERMANY: ITALY: SPAIN: THE SCANDINAVIAN COUNTRIES: POLAND AND RUSSIA: HUNGARY: OTTOMAN TURKS: THE GREEK EMPIRE.
THE GREAT INTERREGNUM.—After the death of Frederick II. (1250), Germany and Italy, the two countries over which the imperial authority extended, were left free from its control. Italy was abandoned to itself, and thus to internal division. The case of Germany was analogous. During the "great interregnum," lasting for twenty-three years, the German cities, by their industry and trade, grew strong, as did the burghers in France, and in the towns in England, in this period. But in Germany the feudal control was less relaxed. This interval was a period of anarchy and trouble. William of Holland wore the title of emperor until 1256. Then the electors were bribed, and Alfonso X. of Castile, great-grandson of Frederick Barbarossa, and Richard, Earl of Cornwall, younger son of King John of England, were chosen by the several factions; but their power was nominal. The four electors on the Rhine, and the dukes and counts, divided among themselves the imperial domains. The dismemberment of the duchies of Swabia and Franconia (1268), and at an earlier day (1180) of Saxony, created a multitude of petty sovereignties. The great vassals of the empire, the kings of Denmark, of Poland, of Hungary, etc., broke away from its suzerainty. There was a reign of violence. The barons sallied out of their strongholds to rob merchants and travelers. The princes, and the nobles in immediate relation to the empire, governed, each in his own territory, as they pleased. New means of protection were created, as the League of the Rhine, comprising sixty cities and the three Rhenish archbishops, and having its own assemblies; and the Hanseatic League, which has been described (p. 303). Moreover, corporations of merchants and artisans were established in the cities. In the North, where the Crusades, and war with the Slaves, had thinned the population, colonies of Flemings, Hollanders, and Frisians came in to cultivate the soil. During the long-continued disturbances after the death of Frederick II., the desire of local independence undermined monarchy. The empire never regained the vigor of which it was robbed by the interregnum.
HOUSE OF HAPSBURG.—Rudolph, Count of Hapsburg (1273-1291), was elected emperor for the reason, that, while he was a brave man, he was not powerful enough to be feared by the aristocracy. He wisely made no attempt to govern in Italy. He was supported by the Church, to which he was submissive. He devoted himself to the task of putting down disorders in Germany. Against Ottocar II., king of Bohemia, who now held also Austria, Styria, Carinthia, and Carniola, and who refused to acknowledge Rudolph, the emperor twice made war successfully. In a fierce battle at the Marchfield, in 1278, Ottocar was slain. Austria, Styria, and Carniola fell into the hands of the emperor. They were given as fiefs to Rudolph's son Albert; and Carinthia to Albert's son-in-law, the Count of Tyrol. This was the foundation of the power of the house of Hapsburg. Rudolph strove with partial success to recover the crown lands, and did what he could to put a stop to private war and to robbery. Numerous strongholds of robbers he razed to the ground. His practical abandonment of Italy, his partial restoration of order in Germany, and his service to the house of Hapsburg, are the principal features of Rudolph's reign.
HENRY VII. (1308-1313): ITALY.—Adolphus of Nassau (1292-1298) was hired by Edward I. to declare war against France. His doings in Thuringia. which he tried to buy from the Landgrave Albert, led the electors to dethrone him, and to choose Albert I. (1298-1308), Duke of Austria, son of Rudolph. His nephew John, whom he tried to keep out of his inheritance, murdered him. Henry VII. (1308-1313), who was Count of Luxemburg, the next emperor, did little more than build up his family by marrying his son John to the granddaughter of King Ottocar. John was thus made king of Bohemia. In these times, when the emperors were weak, they were anxious to strengthen and enrich their own houses. Henry went to Italy to try his fortunes beyond the Alps. He was crowned in Pavia king of Italy, and in Rome emperor (1312). But the rival parties quickly rose up against him: he was excommunicated by Clement V., an ally of France, and died—it was charged, by poison mixed in the sacramental cup—in 1313. He was a man of pure and noble character, but the time had passed for Italy to be governed by a German sovereign.
CIVIL WAR: ELECTORS AT RENSE.—One party of the electors chose Frederick of Austria (1314-1330), and the other Louis of Bavaria (1314-1347). A terrible civil war, lasting for ten years, was the consequence. In a great battle near Muehldorf, the Austrians were defeated, and Frederick was captured. Louis had now to encounter the hostility of Pope John XXII. (at Avignon), who wished to give the imperial crown to Philip the Fair of France. Louis maintained that he received the throne, not from the popes, but from the electors. He was excommunicated by John, who refused to sanction the agreement of Louis and of Frederick, now set at liberty, to exercise a joint sovereignty. Louis was in Italy from 1327 to 1330, where he was crowned emperor by a pope of his own creation. All efforts of Louis to make peace with Pope John and his successor, Benedict XII., were foiled by the opposition of France. The strife which had been occasioned in Germany by this interference from abroad created such disaffection among the Germans, that the electors met at Rense, in 1338, and declared that the elected king of the Germans received his authority from the choice of the electoral princes exclusively, and was Roman emperor even without being crowned by a pope.
DEPOSITION OF LOUIS OF BAVARIA.—The imprudence of Louis in aggrandizing his family, and his assumption of an acknowledged papal right in dissolving the marriage of the heiress of Tyrol with a son of King John of Bohemia, turned the electors against him. In 1346 Pope Clement VI. declared him deposed. The electors chose in his place Charles, the Margrave of Moravia, the son of King John of Bohemia. Louis did not give up his title, but he died soon after.
CHARLES IV. (1347-1378).—Charles IV. visited Italy, and was crowned emperor (1355); but, according to a promise made to the Pope, he tarried in Rome only a part of one day. He was crowned king of Burgundy at Arles (1365). In Italy "he sold what was left of the rights of the empire, sometimes to cities, sometimes to tyrants." His principal care was for building up his own hereditary dominion, which he so enlarged that it extended, at his death, from the Baltic almost to the Danube. He fortified and adorned Prague, and established there, in 1348, the first German university.
THE GOLDEN BULL.—The great service of Charles IV. to Germany was in the grant of the charter called the Golden Bull (1356). This expressly conferred the right of electing the emperor on the SEVEN ELECTORS, who had, in fact, long exercised it. These were the archbishops of Mentz, of Trier, and of Cologne, and the four secular princes, the King of Bohemia, the Count Palatine of the Rhine, the Duke of Saxony, and the Margrave of Brandenburg. The electoral states were made indivisible and inalienable, and hereditary in the male line. The electors were to be sovereign within their respective territories, and their persons were declared sacred.