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FRANCIS LANCELOTT, ESQ. Queens of England. Vol.1.


Sir John Froissart's Chronicles of England, France, Spain and the Ajoining Countries from the latter part of the reign of Edward II to the coronation of Henry IV in 12 volumes 

Chronicles of Enguerrand De Monstrelet (Sir John Froissart's Chronicles continuation) in 13 volumes 

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Queens of England. Vol.1.
page 55

•where Geoffrey of Anjou, husband of the Empress, was, with a mighty army, endeavouring to obtain the dukedom fur himself and his spouse. Here he subdued his foes, not by his good sword, hut by tho all-powerful influence of wealth, lìy a three-years' pension of two thousand marks of silver, he purchased a peace with Geoffrey, who retired to his own earldom ; and with a golden bribe he induced the King of France, as lord paramount of Normandy, to receive the liege homage of the baby boy Eustace, whose brow he had encircled with the ducal crown. During Stephen's sojourn in Normandy, his consort, Matilda, remained in England, and although we have no record of her doings at this period, we may presume she used her best exertions in furtherance of the cause of her royal lord. In 1138, Stephen returned to England, and immediately proceeding to the north, severely chastised the King of the Scots, who, with banner unfurled in support of the rights of the Empress, had again invaded Northumberland. Whilst her royal lord wTas thus occupied in the north, Matilda of Boulogne, with the courage of an amazon, herself besieged the rebels, who bad seized Dover Castle, and aided by a lioulonnois squadron, blockaded the fort by sea and land, and finally reduced her rebellious subjects to subjection. Matters, nevertheless, daily wore a more alarming aspect. Baron after baron deserted to the cause of the Empress, which so exasperated Stephen, that in his wrath he exclaimed, " Since they have chosen me king, why do they now forsake me? By the birth of Goti, I will never he called an abdicated monarch !" Seldom do misfortunes come single. The revolt of the nobles induced the Scotch King, for a third time, to cross the border, with an army more fierce and formidable than ever. These cruel barbarians marked their track with blood and tire. By them innocent babes were tossed high into the air to be received on the points of murderous swords, with yells of delight ; and, excerpting a few blooming maidens and stalwart men, whom they drove like cattle to captivity, they cruelly put to death every mortal that fell into their hands, lo r months did these fierce invaders devastate the northern counties, where they penetrated even to Yorkshire, without meeting with any serious obstruction, as Stephen and his followers were being too hotly pressed by their foes in the midland counties to send aught but pity and words of encouragement to the terror-stricken inhabitants, Thus overcome, and without prospects of succour, the barons and the people gave way to despondency, whilst numbers prepared to migrate farther inland. At this crisis, the venerable Thurstan, Archbishop of York, like a true patriot, thundered forth the war-cry against the relentless Scotch ; and well did the old man's zeal serve the good cause he so eloquently advocated. Inspired by religion and patriotism, all the male inhabitants of the invaded counties flocked to the prelate's standard, when, after receiving absolution and a blessing from the Archbishop himself, and solemnly vowing to conquer or die, they, with the holy cross in their van, and the consecrated banners of St. Peter, St. Wilfred, and St. John floating over their heads, boldly marched forth, and drove the Scotch before them like chaff before the hurricane. This fearful contest was named, on account of the holy banners that the victors fought under, the "Battle of the Standard." When night closed in, ten thousand Scots lay dead on Cuton Moor, and, in their fliglit, nearly all the remaining thousands were slain by the exasperated peasantry before they reached the Scottish border. The English lost but one knight and about a hundred soldiers. The Scotch king was so completely overcome by this disastrous defeat, which nearly cost him his life, that, through the mediation of Queen Matilda, he concluded a peace with her lord, that was highly advantageous to both monarchs. Having subdued his foes without, and greatly quelled the rebels within, his kingdom, Stephen fondly believed the crown firmly fixed on his brow for he had yet to learn that the thr^n* of* an usurper is ever a tottering one. In imi

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