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for riches, and the dissipation of Louis increased, while the impudicity of his debauches was, if possible, redoubled. Emboldened on finding that his illicit connexion with the queen remained unpunished, he seduced, or flattered himself with the idea that he had also corrupted, the wife of his rival; nay, he even proceeded so far as to place before the eyes of the latter certain presents stated to have been received, which tended to manifest this triumph. Such unblushing effrontery deserved punishment, and, according to the reigning opinions and customs of that age, called aloud for vengeance. A true knight would have dared the defamer to single combat, and met him in the lists : Jean, however, dissembled ; and, perhaps, delighted that his shame afforded him an excuse in the eyes of the Parisians, he caused Louis to be assassinated, although they had been reconciled three days previous, and had received the sacrament together.
Jean was not mistaken; the inhabitants of Paris compared the seeming virtue of the duke with the depravity of his victim; and the assassin was not only excused, but even found an advocate among the ministers of the gospel.*
• The person above alluded to was Jean Petit, a professed
to was Jean Fett, a Pro theologian, whose apology for the murder of Louis, duke of Orleans, was publicly disseminated in the presence of the king his brother, and the whole court, as well as in Laboureur's History,
Jean, having the populace at his disposal ; supported by the university, which at that period exercised considerable influence; and by the troops of many of the provinces ; nothing more was required, in order to reign over France, than to crown his enterprises with the sacred name of king. He succeeded without difficulty in procuring this phantom, which the heir to the crown, Louis the dauphin, then in adolescency, and already despised on account of his early profligacy, was not able to dispute.
The princes, and the majority of the nobles, however, conspired against the duke of Burgundy; some with a view to oppose his ambitious projects; others, namely the children of the duke of Orleans, to satiate their vengeance; and a third class, 'to shake off the burdens of his tyrannical government; while nearly the whole sought to increase their own power, during the general overthrow which would thus be occasioned.
Armaments in consequence took place on all sides, and the legitimate authority was no longer
page 631.-Consult also Juvenal des Ursins, page 236; Choisy, page 330; and Villaret, xiii. page 14.
These propositions were subsequently condemned, and burnt on the 24th of February, 1413, when the Armagnac faction had gained the upper hand; but they were again solemnly approved in a sermon delivered in 1418, at which period the Burgundians had in their turn acquired the ascendency.
deemed an object worthy consideration. The state was plunged in one chaos of anarchy; every mansion-house, castle, or dungeon, was converted into a fortress, wherein each petty officer who could collect a few soldiers established himself the feudal despot of the surrounding villages, the pillage of which became the wages of their troops, whensoever the leaders of the respective factions did not find it necessary to purchase their assistance. · Jean sans Peur was at the head of the most puissant party; and the count of Armagnac, fatherin-law of the young duke of Orleans, commanded the other, which he nominated after himself. He certainly was not a member of the royal family; but, sovereign of a large territory, descended from the most ancient house of France, allied to all those possessing an illustrious name, being equal in personal bravery to any nobleman of that age, and superior to all for his talents and his genius, public opinion bestowed upon him that dignity, of which he proved himself worthy in every respect by his character, which was a tissue of egotism, ambition, hatred, · pride, vindictiveness, and cruelty.
From this period, and for several succeeding years, the two factions were in constant motion, contending for the possession of the capital, the king, and the dauphin, in order to carry them off. The good and peaceable citizens, victims of the alternate fury of the Burgundians and the Armagnacs, used every
effort to restore tranquillity: several truces as well as treaties of peace, signed and sworn to, were almost instantaneously violated; so that the soil of France presented a scene of devastation and bloodshed. Upon one of these occasions, when the duke of Burgundy had Paris at his disposal, in order to render his dominion permanent, he gave arms to the lowest and the most ferocious band he could collect together; the butchers,* and those employed to skin the slaughtered animals, became the satellites of a prince of the blood royal, and one of the first potentates of Europe. To this mob of plunderers the partisans of the Armagnacs were delivered up;t so that the proscriptions of a Marius
* This measure was effected by means of Saint Pol, governor of Paris, a most determined Burgundian. In the month of December, 1411, Jean, duke of Burgundy, assisted at the funeral of one Legoix, a leading man among the butchers, who was killed in a combat, and matters went so far that an inscription was placed upon his tomb. See Laboureur, page 803; Juvenal, page 297 ; and Villaret, xii. page 201.
+ When the dauphin Louis succeeded in rescuing Paris froin the butchers, there were found in the house of one of the sanguinary chiefs of this band, two lists of proscription, the first of which contained a catalogue of no less than fourteen hundred persons ; and in the second were a great many having the letters T., B., and R. before them, meaning (à tuer, fc.) to be killed, banished, or ransomed. - See Laboureur, page 899; Juvenal, page 332; Villaret, xiü. page 274.
and a Sylla were almost exceeded by the atrocities then committed.
These excesses tended to infuse energy into the minds of moderate men, who were seconded by Louis the dauphin, a prince that could ill submit to the yoke of the duke of Burgundy, and who, therefore, strove to form a party. Consultations and assemblies were held; and at length Paris was taken, and surrendered up to the Armagnacs, who did not, it is true, arm the multitude, yet their administration was almost as insupportable. The Burgundians in their turn were pursued and oppressed; the slightest movement, the least expression in their favour, was magnified into a crime, punished by death as soon as suspected, and the sentence always pronounced without judgment.
Twenty years were already passed away since the first access of insanity had seized upon Charles VI.; yet during the troubles that uniformly desolated France for such a protracted period, England had not been in a situation to take advantage of her disasters. Richard II., the successor of Edward III., who was despised by his subjects, had already courted the assistance of the French king;* and subse
* After some renewals and partial treaties entered into with France, particularly those of 1381, 1383, 1384, and 1392, Richard II., in 1993, ratified' a treaty of five years with Charles VII., and on the 19th of March, 1395, he prolonged