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fort, Count of Evreux, he acquired the three important towns of Montfort, Epernon, and Rochefort, which brought his garrisons within a few miles of Paris itself, and affected in a very dangerous degree the communication between the French capital and a great part of the Orleanois.
This situation of affairs alarmed, as it well might, the King of France; and the arrival of Becket in Normandy, bringing with him reinforcements of twelve hundred knights, and a body of inferior cavalry, to the amount of four thousand men, soon put it in the power of the English monarch to punish the inconsistency and injustice of Louis far more severely than he had hitherto done. Henry, however, with that moderation in success, which was one of the finest traits of his character, did not exact more than he might reasonably expect. Negociations took place; and in the first instance a truce was concluded from Christmas 1159, to Whitsuntide 1160; which was followed by a treaty of peace in the subsequent year, every article of which evidently shows how tired of the war Louis had become—we might indeed say, how terribly humbled he appeared to be by its consequences. All that Henry could possibly demand was granted by the French King. He retained everything he had acquired in the County of Toulouse, except some towns which he restored, not to the King of France, or his brother-in-law, but to his own ally, the Viscount of Nismes. These, however, were merely ancient possessions, of which the Count of Toulouse had formerly stripped the sovereign of Nismes. All Henry's allies were protected by the treaty, not even excepting Simon de Montfort, though that nobleman had undoubtedly been guilty of a most notorious act of treason. Henry, on his part, granted to the Count of Toulouse, as we find by the treaty, a truce from the first day of Pentecost next ensuing, for the period of one year, which suspension of arms is expressly stated to be consented to by the English monarch for the love of the King of France; but Henry does not in the slightest degree abandon thereby his title to the whole County of Toulouse, his right being in some measure acknowleged by the terms used by the French monarch.* At the same time the Count of Toulouse is bound not to molest Henry in the possession of the conquered territories during the truce; though he, and the allies of the King of England, are left at liberty to wage war upon each other if they think fit.
The most important part of the treaty, however, in a historical point of view, is to be found amongst the first clauses. It is there declared that the Kin of France does render unto the King of England all those rights and territories in France which had been enjoyed by Henry I., excepting the Vexin, of which certain portions are declared to belong to the King of England, and certain portions are retained by the King of France. Even these, however, he agrees to give up to Henry as the marriage portion of his daughter on her union with the son of the King of England, and promises seisin thereof, at all events, within three years from the next day of Assumption, after the conclusion of the peace. It is, moreover, distinctly stipulated that, if the marriage of the Princess of France with Henry's son take place before that term of three years was expired, with the cognizance and consent of the Holy Church, the seisin and possession of the whole shall be given to Henry. In the meantime, the castles of the Vexin were placed in the custody of the Knights · Templars till the specified period for delivering them up to the English monarch. Three great fiefs of the Vexin, comprising a large extent of territory, were secured to the King of England immediately, and for ever; but the whole territory was the object in view, and that was speedily obtained.
* Louis does not say that he grants, but that he restores to Henry those rights and possessions of the county of Poitou of which he speaks. The words used are “ Præterea rex Franciæ reddidit regi Angliæ omnia jura et tenementa comitis Pictarensis."
The treaty had not been signed six months, when Constance of Castile, the second wife of Louis the Young, died in childbed of a daughter named Adelais; and with indecent haste the King of France proceeded to marry again within one fortnight of the death of Constance. The funeral baked meats did coldly furnish forth the marriage tables, at least to Henry, who was, it would seem, in Paris at the time of Constance's death, having gone thither in order that his son Henry might do homage to the French King for the Duchy of Normandy. Constance had ever been a firm friend to the King of England, and her death itself was a serious calamity to that monarch ; but when Henry saw that the new bride chosen by the King of France was a sister of the Count of Champagne, who had long been inimical to him, he felt both grieved and alarmed, and quitted Paris hastily, without waiting to witness the nuptials of the widower of fourteen days.
The English King seems at once to have perceived that a change of policy would take place towards him; and his first step on returning to Normandy was to devise measures for rendering the engagements of the King of France with regard to the Vexin, irrevocable. His proceedings, indeed, must have been very quick; for we find that he was in Paris in the beginning of October, and that in November of the same year he had everything prepared for putting his plan in execution. Circumstances indeed favored him greatly. It happened that, at that time, a schism which disturbed the church caused the Pope Alexander to send the cardinals of Pisa and Pavia, as legates to the King of England. These legates were now with Henry in Normandy; the Princess Margaret of France was in the custody of Robert de Neuburg,
one of Henry's vassals. The three Knights Templars, Robert of Pirou, Tostes of Saint Omers, and Richard of Hastings, were gathered together in the palace of the King of England. The Legates gave the full consent and approbation of the Church to the marriage of the Princess Margaret with the young Prince Henry; the ceremony was performed between them—the bridegroom being seven, and the bride not four years old—and the Templars, on the summons of the King of England, having witnessed the marriage, and knowing the existing treaty, gave up the strong castles of Gisors, Neufle, and Neuchatel, with the whole of the rest of the Norman Vexin..
It might perhaps be necessary for the King of England to proceed in this hurried and clandestine manner, but Henry's dignity, if not his policy, would have been better secured by pursuing a more open course ; and the secrecy and haste of the transaction cast suspicion in the eyes of Europe upon the rectitude of his conduct and the justice of his claims. That his claims were perfectly just, and that there was nothing in any degree fraudulent in the transaction, nobody who reads the treaty can in any degree deny. Whatever the writers on the French side of the question might say, there was no doing away the fact that, not only had the marriage been contemplated as a thing likely to take place speedily, and provided for by the treaty itself, but that the marriage so provided for was exactly the sort of mar