FRANCIS LANCELOTT, ESQ.
Queens of England. Vol.1.
shrine, whilst Henry presented rich silken robes to the choristers, and gave full credence to a tale, which declared that devils had been cast out of two men the instant the Confessor's coffin was raised.
Peace and order wore scarcely restored to the country, when Prince Edward, followed by the Earls Warwick and Pembroke, and other adventurous and turbulent spirits, undertook a crusade to the Holy Land. Edward, accompanied by his wife and his brother Edmund, proceeded to Palestine at the close of the year 1270. Previous to his departure, Prince Edmund married the fair Avoline, heiress of William Fortibus, Earl of Albemarle. Aveline died before the return of her husband. She had been a wife but a few months, when a painful disease closed her eyes in death. Her remains were interred with solemn obsequies close to the altar in Westminster Abbey, where a stately tomb and her effigy were erected to her memory.
In 1270, Eleanora, by the death of her uncle, Peter of Savoy, was put in possession of the honour of Richmond, which she forthwith resigned to her sonin-law, the Earl of Brittany, retaining only a small annuity of fifty marks. This same year the Pope, in consideration of her having butjust emerged from a sea of troubles, confirmed to her use the tenths of all ecclesiastical benefices in Ireland, and in the subsequent year, his Holiness assigned to her some broad lands in France. The valuable jewels which Eleanora had pledged in Paris, were redeemed in 1272, and conveyed to England by the Queen's express desire.
But the death of the more weak than brave monarch, Henry, was now at hand, The loss of his brother, the King of the Romans, who died of paralysis at Berkhamstead, on the second of April, 1272,*preyed upon his mind, and hastened the dissolution of his decaying constitution. Whilst returning from Norwich, where he had been in person to quell a riot, occasioned by aquarrel between the citizens and monks, in which the cathedral and monastery adjoining were reduced to ashes by the towns
people, he was seized with an alarming
illness at Bury St. Edmund's, whence,
although seriously sick, he proceeded by
short stages to London. A message had
been dispatched some time previously,
urging Edward to immediately return
but ere that Prince reached England,
the King had ceased to breathe. On
finding himself at death's door, Henry
summoned the Earl of Gloucester
into his presence, and made him swear
to preserve the peace of the country
during the absence of the heir to the
throne, Prince Edward; when, after con
fessing his sins and receiving spiritual
comfort, he expired at Westminster,
surrounded by the most exalted prelates
and barons of the land, on the night of
the sixteenth of November, 1272, in the
sixty-seventh year of his age, and the
fifty-seventh of his reign.
By his will, which he made in the year
1253, prior to embarking for Gascony,
he left no pecuniary bequests of import
ance. He evinced his affection for
Eleanora, and the confidence he reposed
in her, by naming her as the guardian of
his children and of his kingdom and
lands, till they were of ago. A gold
cross, a silver image of the Virgin, and
a white embroidered vestment, he be
queathed to the abbey church at West
minster ; whilst to his son, Prince Ed
ward, he left another gold cross, a highly
finished golden image of the \rirgin, and
a vestment richly adorned with precious
In compliance with this will, Eleanora
caused the council to assemble at the
New Temple, on the twentieth of No
vember, the feast of King Edmund the
Martyr, where, by her desire and con
sent, Robert Kilwardby, Archbishop of
Canterbury, the Earl of Gloucester, and
other peers and prelates, proclaimed
Prince Edward King of England, Lord
of Ireland, and Duke of Aquitaine, by
the style of Edward the First.
King Henry's remains, arrayed in
royal apparel, were, in accordance with his own express desire, placed in the very coffin which had formerly contained those of Edward the Confessor, and buried near the shrine of that sainted I king in Westminster Abbey. The care