Saturday, 23 August 2008

Some background I forgot.

I forgot to mention that Bolingbroke (at Flint and Chester) extended his protection to the men who had stayed loyal to Richard - in this sense at least, that he did not have them summarily executed a la mode Wiltshire, Bushey and Green. It does seem that some people even wanted to chop John Beaufort (who had been picked up with York at Berkeley) but Henry was particularly keen to extend a hand to his half-brother.

The one man excluded from Henry's bounty was John Montagu (or Montacute) Earl of Salisbury. Apparently when Henry first arrived at the French court he was well received, but when Salisbury appeared there as Richard's ambassador to give the French the full SP, the atmosphere chilled somewhat. Among other things it seems to have stopped Henry making a useful marriage. As a result he was more than a little cheesed off with Lord Salisbury and treated him with icy contempt. (Another factor may have been that Salisbury was a Lollard*. Henry, under the influence of Archbishop Arundel, was to prove himself very much more hostile to the Lollards than Richard had been.)

* See my post of 8 March if you're not sure what a Lollard was.

Another little thing was that at this time Henry was making use of the Duchy of Lancaster seal to appoint men to offices - for example Northumberland was made Constable in lieu of Edward of York. Technically such appointments had no validity whatsoever, as (legally) Henry held no office himself. The reality of course is that during a revolution naked force is the only law. Now he had Richard in his power, Bolingbroke was able to summon a Parliament in the King's name, and indeed issue various orders under Richard's seal.

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