Stories From Froissart

Cover of book Stories From Froissart
Categories: Fiction » Literature

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OF THE BORDER-FEUDS BETWEEN ENGLAND AND SCOTLAND; [BA'I.VK IflTKODVCTORY TO THE STORY OF Till! BATTLB Of OTTERBOVRHB.l An historical selection, the object of which is to illustrate the manners of the Middle Ages, obviously ought to contain something bearing upon that very peculiar portion of them?the intercourse of the Borderers of England and Scotland. For this purpose, I have chosen Froissart's description of the Battle of Otter- bourne?an event which may justly be considered a fair sample of the conteste'on the Borders?possessing, as it did, that mixture of national and local warfare by which they were so frequently distinguished. I shall preface the account of that battle individually, by some notice of the general state of the Marches. The Border-Feuds may be divided into three classes?the forays and inroads of individual families and clans?the warden-raids, or expeditions headed by the chief nobles and rulers of the marches?and the more general international hostilities of the two kingdoms at large. To each of these, especially the two first, I shall devote some attention. Barbarous as were the manners of these districts, and constant as were the inroads made from both sides of the border respectively,?wanton effusion of blood cannot be said to have been among the usual crimes of the Marchmen. When a foray was undertaken solely for the sake of plunder, it was seldom or never attended by voluntary bloodshed on the part of the marauders. It is true, that they would resist to the last extremity, if a rescue of their booty was attempted : but their object was, if possible, to return with it unperceived; and, unless in the case of a family feud, they were content with pillage, without adding to it midnight conflagration, or murder. There ex...

Stories From Froissart
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