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Now that the patent
village was freed from all taxes.
of nobility was signed by the King, she received with. it the first instalment of a handsome income granted to her with her new rank. This she was liberal in spending
for the benefit of the
poor and in religious offerings.
She frequently visited the sick, and often prayed by the side of the wounded and the dying.1
A little trait of thoughtful kindness shows how good was her natural disposition. In her prosperity she remembered the artist who painted for her the design she had assumed for her white silk standard, that had so often been borne before her to victory. She made her secretary write a letter to the magistrates of the town where he lived, begging them, for her sake, to make a dower present to his young daughter; probably she knew that the artist was too poor to portion his child.
It seemed to be the will of Providence, that at the time Jeanne's highest honours were bestowed upon her, she was to be exposed to vexations that most nearly touched her. An impostor sprang up, encouraged by her enemies for the sole purpose of lessening the meritorious pretensions of the Maid. The impostor's name was Catherine de La Rochelle. She found her way to the King, and told him that every night a figure in white appeared before her, and instructed her where to find hidden treasures; that she could discover gold and silver enough to pay any army Jeanne might raise. She 'Mémoires de la Pucelle.
THE SPIRIT OF LOYALTY.
was introduced to the Maid, whose natural shrewdness soon detected Catherine's imposition, to the annoyance of Brother Richard, the famous preaching friar, who patronized her. The brain of this eccentric cordelier was turned by his restless desire for notoriety; and he
fancied that if he could get Jeanne and Catherine to act in conjunction, he could direct and rule over both. He was mistaken. With the truly honest servant of God he could do nothing; the false one he managed to his satisfaction. But Jeanne exposed the deceit of the whole transaction, and Catherine was discountenanced at Court.1
The spirit of loyalty which Jeanne had called up in France could not be extinguished by all the efforts of the enemy, and many cities and towns returned to the obedience of their legitimate sovereign. In Paris, what was called a conspiracy in his favour was unfortunately discovered, and more than a hundred persons suffered by torture, drowning, and beheading. Bedford, seeing that a reaction for a French king was gaining ground, resolved on a great effort to overcome it, and secure the crown for England. It was decided that Cardinal Beaufort should bring over seas the little Henry vi., to make him known in France. Accordingly he landed at Calais. with a vast retinue; and in this goodly company came Peter Cauchon, that disreputable bishop who had been driven from his diocese by the people of Beauvais. Henry, the Cardinal, and their suite, were installed in 1 Henri Martin, vol. vi. p. 222.
Burgundy superior to Charles-Bedford goes to Paris-Alençon raises an Army-requests Charles to let him have the Aid of the Maid -refused-La Trémoille obtains her Assistance for D'AlbretJeanne's Heroism before the Walls of Le Montier-her Danger -goes to the Siege of La Charité-the Expedition fails-Great Honours shown to the Maid at Bourges-her Exemplary Conduct-the Impostor Catherine-Spirit of Loyalty called up by Jeanne-Beaufort brings over to France the Child Henry Burgundy's Policy-his Marriage with Isabella of Portugal Magnificent Welcome to her-Order of the Golden Fleece-the King at Sulli-Jeanne departs with D'Aulon and her Followers unknown to the King-Once more assumes Arms - takes the Ruffian Franquet-his Execution-goes to the Relief of Compiègne -Prediction made by herself in the Church-the Last Scenes of her Heroism-she is captured by the Burgundians.
IN the 21st of September, Charles with his retinue passed the Loire, and his disorderly troops dispersed. Whilst at Gien, he and the Archbishop of Rheims entertained anew their scheme of an accommodation with Burgundy. But the Duke, who evidently felt his own superiority in power, ability, and politics, played with their overtures so adroitly, that, whilst making preparations to renew the war in the north, he made Charles believe he was about to visit Paris in order to forward a truce that would lead to a
e with a
! by any
I almost de him
r leaving conduct
In some ian; for
I over to
t of the
gets were V of the
idies (the number),
the fortress of Rouen, on the banks of the Seine, built by Henry v. to overawe the city after the battle of Agin
The Duke of Burgundy now resolved to keep faith with Bedford, and therefore broke it with Charles; it was for his own interest, however, more than for Bedford's, that he did So. He desired to obtain possession of an important town, Compiègne, as it would give him the absolute control over the Oise. Some time before this, Charles would have given up the town to him, but the inhabitants refused their consent. The Duke then offered to buy it of the governor, Sir William de Flavi, a brave captain, but a monster of depravity and cruelty, who had committed the most horrible crimes. De Flavi replied that the town did not belong to him, and he guarded it for the King of France. Philip resolved to have the place at any cost: he therefore threatened it, and, as we have seen, would not renew with Charles any terms of truce. But before we come to what will be the most disastrous event in our story, we must pause to say a few words about the Duke who occasioned it.
Philip, Duke of Burgundy, was certainly one of the most remarkable men of his time. He was thrice married. His first wife, sister to Charles VII., died of a broken heart at the spectacle of quarrel and bloodshed between the land of her birth and that of her marriage. The second was Bona of Artois, widow of the Count de Nevers, who fell at Agincourt. The third