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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 201



your expenses, when yon return to us as a good wife should to her lord, we will take care that nothing shall be wanting wherewith to support the dignity and honour of us and yourself. Moreover, we greatly desire the instant return of our dear son, Edward, for being of tender age, we fear certain enemies and traitors might tamper with him, greatly to the injury of our honour, and the indignation of the nation. " Given at Westminster, December the first, 1325." At the same time, Edward sent a letter on the same subject, and containing almost the same sentiments, to the King of France ; and on the day following, he dispatched a short epistle to the Prince of Wales, charging him, that as his homage had been done, to bid adieu to his uncle, the King of France, and waiting for nothing, not even his mother, save she would come quickly, return home with all speed. These letters proved fruitless ; the Queen and the Prince still tarried in France. Edward therefore laid his troubles before a parliament at Westminster, who resolved that each of the bishops should immediately write a letter to the Queen, pressing her to hasten to England, To the Archbishop of Canterbury, Isabella returned the following answer :—• "M ust reverend F ather in G od— " We have well considered the letter by which you request us to return to the company of our most dear and dread lord, Edward, and assure us that Hugh De la Spencer is not our foe, but our friend. At this we marvel exceedingly, as you and every person of sound mind must know, that we should never have abandoned the company of our beloved lord, unless we feared for our life and liberty, and dreaded the deadly vengeance of the said Hugh, who completely governs our dearest lord and his kingdom, and who, we know from experience, though we dissembled to escape the danger, would do us all the injury in his power. Truly, there is nothing we desire so much, after God and our own salvation, as to live and die in the company of our dearest husband. We therefore entreat you, reverend father, to excuse us, for m nowise can we return without endangering our life, which to us is a source of anguish too distressing for words to express. " Given at Paris, Wednesday after Candlemas." About this time, the bad, bold Queen had recourse to the unprecedented and unconstitutional measure of clandestinely contracting the heir of England to a daughter of the Earl of Ilainault, without the knowledge of the King, or consent of parliament. The bride's portion was paid in advance, and with this and the incomes for Guienne and Ponthieu, Isabella supported herself in her opposition to her unfortunate husband. On being informed that the Prince of Wales was actually betrothod, Edward became enraged, and wrote to his youthful heir as follows :— " E dward, pair S ox—• " We understand that you have not forgotten tho charge we gave you when you left our company at Dover. But although assured that you have not of your own free will disobeyed us, yet we are greatly grieved that you remain at Paris, and with your mother publicly hold companionship with Mortimer, our traitor and foe, instead of returning to us, as we have frequently enjoined you by former letters. "W e also learn, to our sorrow, that you have transmitted orders to the lords •f Guienne, contrary to those given by us as your administrator, and greatly too to our injury. Remember, we alone are your supreme governor, and you ought to obey us even before your mother. Therefore, we command and charge you, that laying aside all reasons, excuses, pretences, you return to us as quickly as you can, and that you neither marry, nor suffer yourself to be married, until you have been restored to us, and then not without our advice or consent. "P.S . Edward, fair son, though yon are of tender age, take these our com


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