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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 180

and the events of her life, we cannot be far wrong in the period we have assigned. In compliance with a treaty between Edward the First and Philip the Fair, Isabella was solemnly betrothed to Edward the Second, then Prince of Wales, in 1303. The ceremony was performed with great pomp in the presence of the French King and Queen, the leading nobles of France, and the English ambassadors. As Prince Edward was not present, after the Pope's dispensation for the marriage had been read aloud, Pere Gilo, Archbishop of Narhonne, who officiated on the occasion, took the hand of Isabella in his, and emphatically exclaimed, " By this act do I solemnly betroth Edward ot Caernarvon, and Isabella, the second daughter of Philip, the reigning monarch of France, on condition that the terms of their marriage treaty be duly performed." By this marriage treaty, it was stipulated, that Philip should give his daughter a portion of thirteen thousand tournois, three thousand two hundred and fifty pounds sterling, and that she should succeed to the dower of Edward the First's Queen, her aunt, Mar f aret, and have granted to her use, aring Margaret's lifetime, castles and manors to the amount of two thousand five hundred pounds per annum. Edward the First was anxious for this match, and with his dying words charged his heir to complete his union with Isabella without delay. This injunction was the only one of the last solemn commands of his sire that Edward the Second thought proper to obey. It completely accorded with his own sentiments, he therefore complied with it in such haste, that before the obsequies of his father were solemnized, the Bishops of Durham and Norwich were dispatched to the French court to name the natal-day, and forward the necessary preparations for the espousals ; whilst he himself, immediately the arrangements for his wedding were completed, turned his back upon Scotland, where the energetic patriot, Robert Bruce, was daily gaining strength, and neglecting all matters of state, hurried on his unfortunate marriage and coronation with illadvised precipitancy. Indeed, the first acts of Edward the Second were such as at once to excite the contempt of the court and nobles, and convince the nation of his impotency as a monarch. His sire was scarcely dead, when, in violation of his solemn oath, he recalled his favourite, Piers Gavoston, from banishment, totally changed the officers of government, and disgraced and imprisoned the treasurer, Langton, Bishop of Lichfield, for no other reason than that the prelate, with a commendable resolution, had formerly refused to supply the Prince and his favourite with money for their wanton pleasures. Nor was this all ; Edward daily showered gifts and honours upon Gaveston. He elevated him to the Earldom of Cornwall, made him lord chamberlain, bestowed upon him the thirty thousand marks destined for the Holy War, and, on the first of November, 1307, by special appointment, married him to his own niece, Margaret of Gloucester, daughter of his sister, Joanna of Acre,* an act which, of itself, greatly excited the indignation of the barons and the people,f Having appointed Gaveston Regent, with full sovereign powers during his absence, Edward embarked at Dover, on the twenty-second of January, 1308, to complete his marriage. After a prosperous voyage he landed at Boulogne, received the joyous smiles of his bride and her royal parents, who awaited his arrival, and on the same day, did homage to Philip the Fair, for Guiennc and Ponthieu. The following day, January the twenty-fifth, Isabella and Edward were married in the cathedral of Boulogne * "When Gaveston married1, the King bestowed upon him the honours of Tickliill and Berkhampstead, the castle and manors of Skipton in Yorkshire, High Fen in Derbyshire, Cockcrmonth in Cumberland, Torpel and Upton in Northamptonshire, Carisbrook in the Isle of Wight, with divers other landa in England, besides lands in Guienne, to the yearly value of three thousand marks. A tolerable marriage present this from a monarch to a foreign subject, whose only services were those of a debased, immoral sycophant : no wonder the nation cried aloud against it. f See Memoir of Eleanora of Castile, page 149.

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