Unformatted text preview: es, William, king of Scotland, was the only considerable loser, by that invidious and unjust enterprize. PLL v5 (generated January 22, 2010) 245 http://oll.libertyfund.org/title/695 Online Library of Liberty: The History of England, vol. 1 Henry delivered from confinement, without exacting any ransom, about nine hundred knights whom he had taken prisoners; but it cost William the ancient independancy of his crown as the price of his liberty. He stipulated to do homage to Henry for Scotland and all his other possessions; he engaged that all the barons and nobility of his kingdom should also do homage; that the bishops should take an oath of fealty; that both should swear to adhere to the king of England against their native prince, if the latter should break his engagements; and that the fortresses of Edinburgh, Stirling, Berwic, 1175. 10th Aug. Roxborough, and Jedborough should be delivered into Henry’s hands, till the performance of articles.m This severe and humiliating treaty was executed in its full rigour. William, being released, brought up all his barons, prelates, and abbots; and they did homage to Henry in the cathedral of York, and acknowledged him and his successors for their superior lord.n The English monarch stretched still farther the rigour of the conditions which he exacted. He engaged the king and states of Scotland to make a perpetual cession of the fortresses of Berwic and Roxborough, and to allow the castle of Edinburgh to remain in his hands for a limited time. This was the first great ascendant which England obtained over Scotland; and indeed the first important transaction which had passed between the kingdoms. Few princes have been so fortunate as to gain considerable advantages over their weaker neighbours with less violence and injustice, than was practised by Henry against the king of Scots, whom he had taken prisoner in battle, and who had wantonly engaged in a war, in which all the neighbours of that prince, and even his own family, were, without provocation, combined against him.o Henry, having thus, contrary to expectation, extricated himself King’s equitable with honour from a situation, in which his throne was exposed to administration. great danger, was employed for several years in the administration of justice, in the execution of the laws, and in guarding against those inconveniences, which either the past convulsions of his state, or the political institutions of that age, unavoidably occasioned. The provisions, which he made, show such largeness of thought as qualified him for being a legislator; and they were commonly calculated as well for the future as the present happiness of his kingdom. He enacted severe penalties against robbery, murder, false 1176. coining, arson; and ordained that these crimes should be punished by the amputation of the right hand and right foot.p The pecuniary commutation for crimes, which has a false appearance of lenity, had been gradually disused; and seems to have been entirely abolished by the rigour of these statutes. The superstitious trial by water ordeal, though condemned by the church,q still subsisted; but Henry ordained, that any man, accused of murder or any heinous felony by the oath of the legal knights of the county, should, even though acquitted by the ordeal, be obliged to abjure the re...
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This note was uploaded on 02/12/2011 for the course CHIN 101 taught by Professor Dr.yu during the Spring '08 term at University Of Southern Mississippi .
- Spring '08