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

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FRANCIS LANCELOTT, ESQ.
Queens of England. Vol.1.
page 144



Bors for military services, but which had really terminated with tho lives of the Flemish Counts, who had served the English monarchs, he and Eleanora landed at Dover, on the second of August, 1273. On reaching London, Edward and his consort were received with the highest honours. Both houses of parliament assembled to congratulate and welcome them on their return, and as the royal cortege passed under the windows of the Cheap, the wealthy merchants there saluted them with deafening shouts of joy, and showered a profusion of gold and silver upon them. The coronation of Edward and Eleanora took place at Westminster, on Sunday, the nineteenth of August. Robert Kilwardby, Archbishop of Canterbury, presided ; and surrounded by the Queen Dowager, Prince Edmund, the Duke of Brittany, the King of Scotland, the Earl of Gloucester, and all the powerful prelates and nobles of ttte land, anointed and crowned King Edward with his virtuous consort. f The coronation service was performed amidst deafening acclamations, the best of order prevailed, and every one viewed the auspicious commencement of Edward's reign with feelings of delight. Previous to the commencement of the sumptuous banquet, Alexander, the Scotch King, and the hundred Scottish nobles that attended him, on arriving at the banqueting hall, dismounted from their horses, and turned them loose, to be the prize of any persons who had the good fortune to catch them. This example of generous liberality was followed by the King's brother, and by the Earls of Gloucester, of Warenne, of Pembroke, and about one hundred other English knights and nobles. The ood luck of the spectators into whose ands these two hundred or more horses fell, may be conceived, when it is known that each horse was worth from about two hundred to three hundred pounds present money, exclusive of their costly trappings. That there might be no lack of hospitality on this festive occasion, the whole of the Old and New Palaco Yards were covered with temporary wooden erections, where, for a fortnight, was held one continuous banquet, at which all comers, from tho highest to the lowest, were welcomed, feasted, and right-royally entertained, gratuitously. Jn the autumn succeeding her coronation, Eleanora beheld with the deepest dejection the decline of her son, Prince Henry's health. Every means that could be devised were resorted to for his recovery ; to propitiate the saints, his measure was taken in wax, and burnt at the neighbouring shrines, and vigils were performed, and prayers offered up for his recovery, by a number of hired poor widows. Meantime, his body was wrapped in sheep's skins, and other absurd remedies, then supposed to be efficacious, were resorted to, but all in vain, for towards the close of November, the little sufferer breathed his last, at Merton. The exact date of his death is unknown, but there is an order in the issue rolls for a marble tomb for him, dated December the seventh, 1274 ; and there still exists authentic documentary evidence that incontestably proves him to have been the constant companion of his sister Eleanora to the day of his death, which must have occurred about the time we have named, as in one of the Wardrobe Rolls his funeral is mentioned as being performed in December, 1274 ; therefore the generally received account that he died before the return of his parents from the Holy Land, must be deemed one of the errors into which previous biographers have fallen, and which it is our unbounded duty to correct. Edward had now attained his thirtysixth year. In person he was remarkably tall and well proportioned. Being strong, muscular, lithe in limb, and long in the arm and leg, he was an adroit swordsman, and so good a horseman, that when once fairly seated on his saddle, nothing in reason could dislodge him again. His left eyebrow had an oblique fall, similar to that of his father's. He was hot in temper, impatient of injury, and utterly reckless of danger. But by submission his anger might be disarmed, and sentiments of generosity aroused. His natn


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