Page images
PDF
EPUB
[merged small][ocr errors][merged small][merged small][ocr errors][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][ocr errors][ocr errors][merged small]

Rheginewas driven or the Evil

Ten,

and Germany, got the Government into her
hands. This Woman stirred up a moit terrible
and fatal War between King Lewis and his
Sons, ( her Sons in Law ) from whence arose
so great a Conspiracy, that they constrained
their Father to Abdicate the Government, and
give up the Power into their Hands, to the
great detriment of almost all Europe : The Rise
of which Mischiefs, our Historians do unani-
moully attribute, for the most part, to Queen

Judith in a particular manner : ' The Authors,
of this History are the Abbot of Ursperg, Mi-
chael Ritius and Otto Frising. [Chron. 5. cap.34.1
Lewis ( says this last) by reason of the Evil
Deeds of his Wife Judich, was driven out of his

Kingdom. Also Rhegino (in Chron. ann.1z38.]

Lewis ( says he) was deprived of the Kingdom
by his Subjects; and being reduced 10 the Conclition
of a private Man, was put into Prison, and the

Jole Government of the Kingdom, by the Election of
" the Franks, was conferr'd upon Lotharius bis

Son. And this Deprivation of Lewis was occafion'd. principally through the many whoredoms of " bis Wife Judich.

Some Ages after, Queen Blanch, a Spanish Woman, and Mother to St. Lewis, ruled the Land. As soon as She had seized the Helm of Government, the Nobility of France began to take up Arms under the Conduct of Philip Earl of Bologn, the King's Uncle, crying out (as that excellent Author Joannes Fonvilldus writes) [cap. hiftor. 4. ] “ That it was not to be endured " that so great a Kingdom fou'd be governed by a Woman, and She a Siranger. Whereupon those w Nobles rejecting Blanch, chose Earl Philip to be Administrator of the Kingdom : But Blanch perlifting in her purpose, follicited Succors from all Parts, and at last determined to con

L 2

clude

[ocr errors]

clude a League with Ferdinand King of Spain :":
With Philip joyned the Duke of Brittany, and the
Count de Evreux his Brother. These, on a sud-
den, feized on some Town's, and put good Ga-
risons into them. And thus a grievous War
was begun in France, because the Administra-'
tion of the Government had been seized by the
Queen-Mother: Ic hapned that the King went.
( about that time ) to Estampes, being sent thi.
ther by his Mother upon account of the War :
To, that place the Nobles from all Parts hastily
got together, and began to furround the King;
not with an intention (as 7oinville says) to do
him any harm, but to withdraw him from the
Power of his Mother: Which She hearing,
with all speed armed the People of Paris, and
commanded them to march towards Estampes.
Scarce were these Forces got as far as Mont les
hery, when the King ( getting from the No-
bles ) joyned them, and returned along with
them to Paris. As soon as Philip found that he
was not provided with a sufficient Force of
Domestick Troops, he sent for Succours to the
Queen of Cyprus, (who at that time had fonte ·
Controversy depending in the Kingdom) She
èntring with a great Army into Champagn ;
plunderd that Country far and near; Blanch
however continues in her Resolution. This
constrains the Nobility to call in the English
Auxiliaries, who waste Aquitain and all the
Maritime Regions; which Mischiefs arose thro'
the Ambition and unbridled Luft of Rule of
the Queen-Mother, as Joinvillaus tells us at
large, [cap. 7, 8, 9, 10.]

And becaufe many of our Countrymen have a far different Opinion of the Life and Man. ners of Queen Blanch, occafioned (as 'tis probable) by the Flaiterý of the Writers of those

cimes;

times; (For all Writers, either thro’ fear of Punishment, or, by reason of the esteem which the Kings their Sons have in the World, are cautious how they write of Queen-Mothers :) I think it not amiss to relate what 7oinville himself records (cap. 76.] viz. That She had so great a Command over her Son, and had reduced him to that degree of timidity and lowness of Spirit, that She wou'd very seldom suffer the King to converse with his Wife Margarét, (her Daughter-in-Law) whom She hared. And therefore whenever the King went a Journey, She ordered the Purveyors to mark out different Lodgings, that the Queen might lie feparate from the King. So that the poor King was forced to place Waiters and Doorkeepers in Ambush whenever He went near his Queen; Ordering them, that when they heard his Mother Blanch approach the Lodgings, they shou'd beat fome Dogs , by whose Cry he might have warning to hide himself : And one day (fays Foinville ) when Queen Margaret was in Labour, and the King in kindness was come to visit her, on a sudden Queen Blanch furprized himn in her Lodgings: For altho' he had been warned by the howling of the Dogs, and had hid himself (wrapp'd up in the Currains) behind the Bed; yet She found him out, and in the Presence of all the Company laid hands on him, and drew him out of the Chamber : You have nothing to do here (faid She) get out : The poor Queen, in the mean time, being not able to bear the disgrace of such a reproof, fell into a Swoon for grief; fo that the Attendants were forced to call back the King to bring her to her self again, by whose return She was comforted and recover’d. Foinville tells this Story [cap. hist. 76.] in almost these same Words.

Again,

ing; he mightyfays Fonnd the Kinen Queen

Again, Some years after this, Isabella, Widow of Charles the 6th, (Sirnamed the Simple): got possession of the Government: For before the Administration of the Publick Affairs cou'd be taken care of by the Great Council, or committed by them to the Management of chosen and approved Men, many ambitious Courtiers had ftirr'd up Contentions : Six times these Controversies were renewed, and as often compôsed by agreement. At last Isabella being driven out of Paris, betook her self to Chartres : There, having taken into her Service a subtle Knave, one Philip de Morvilliers, She made up a Council of her own, with a President, and appointed this Morvilliers her Chancellor ; by whose advice She order'd a Broad-Seal, commonly called a Chancery-Seal, to be engraven: On which her own Image was cut, holding her Arms down by her Sides : and in her Patents She made use of this preamble. “ Isabella, by the Grace of God, Queen of France ; who, by reaSon of the King's infirmity, has the Administra« tion of the Government in her Hands, &c. But when the Affairs of the Commonwealth were reduced to that desperate estate, that all things went to rack and ruin , She was by the Publick Council banished to Tours, and commitred to the charge of four Tutors, who had Orders to keep her lock'd up at home, and to watch her so narrowly, that she shou'd be able to do nothing; not so much as to write a Letter without their knowledge. A large Account of all this Transaction we have in Monstrellet's History. [Cap. 161. & Cap. 168.]

But whenced to that depuin. She was

CH A P. XX.
Of the Juridical Parliaments in

France.

Nder the Capevingian Family there sprung U up in Francogallia a kind of Judicial v Reign, (Regnunn 7udiciale] of which (by reason of the incredible Industry of the Builders up and Promoters of it, and their unconceivable Subtilty in all subsequent Ages,) we think it necessary to say something. A sort of Men now rule every-where in France, which are called Lawyers by some, and I leaders or. Pettyfoggers by others : These Men, about 300 years ago, managed their Business with so great Craft and Diligence, that they not only subjected to their Domination the Authority of the General Council, (which we spoke of before) but also all the Princes and Nobles, and even the Regal Majesty it self: So that in whatever Towns the Seats of this fame Fidicial Kingdom have been fix'd, very near the third part of the Citizens and Inhabitants have applied themselves to the Study and Discipline of this wrangling

Trade, induced thereunto by the vast Profits and Rewards which attend it. Which every one may take notice of, even in the City of Paris, the Capital of the Kingdom :. For who can be three Days in that City without observing, that the third part of the Citizens are taken up with the Practice of that litigious and Pettyfogging Trade ? Insomuch, that the General Assembly of Lawyers in that City (which is called the Robed Parliament ) is grown to so great a heighth of Wealth and Dignity, that

« PreviousContinue »