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MATTHEW OF WESTMINSTER
The flowers of history, especially such as relate to the affairs of Britain. Vol. II. A.D. 1066 to A.D. I307.

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MATTHEW OF WESTMINSTER
The flowers of history, especially such as relate to the affairs of Britain. Vol. II. A.D. 1066 to A.D. I307.
page 439



son of the aforesaid earl of Leicester, had occupied Northampton, with a numerous army, which town the aforesaid king of England with his powerful army gallantly and manfully took by assault ; taking eighty gallant knights prisoners in it, and a great multitude of squires and burgesses. And when this had come to the knowledge of the earl of Leicester, he, like a lion in a wood, raging at the capture of his cubs, and aspiring with all his might to take the count de Warrenne prisoner, united with the earl of Gloucester, who, not being yet twenty years of age, had been beguiled and had become his adherent, and laid siege to the city of Rochester, and having set fire to a ship, burnt down the bridge of that city, and a wooden tower which was erected on it, and at last he took the city itself, with the outer bailiwick of the castle, by frequent assaults of the soldiers, and occupied it. And when this was heard, the lord the king of England, with a gallant body of troops from the marchers and the northern countries, proceeded rapidly towards the neighbourhood of Rochester, to compel the raising of that siege ; and the aforesaid earls and barons, who were in rebellion against the lord the king, having been informed of this, ceased to attack the castle of Rochester, and set out on their march towards London. And the king directing his march towards the coast, by his clemency and mercy recalled the Cinque Ports to their duty, which were previously in open rebellion, and granted them peace, which they did not at all déserve. In the mean time, the earl of Leicester, together with the earl of Gloucester, and the barons of his party, and with the greater part of the citizens of London, departing from London, directed his march to meet the king of England his lord with flying standards; and on the day after the feast of Saint Paneras, in the month of May, he arrayed the lines of his troops in order of battle on the top of a hill near Lewes, placing in his chariot four of the citizens of London, who were faithful to the king of England, and who would not bear arms against him, the standard of the said earl being elevated, on high, in order that, in their turn, they might be the more easily transfixed by the spears of the vanguard. And behold ! the royal army, finding itself so unexpectedly anticipated, proceeded without much regularity, and in its zeal to encounter them, ascended the acclivity of the hill ; and the eldest son of the king of England, being the captain of the first line, di


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