Unformatted text preview: faction were not obtained, they could assemble the whole council of twenty-five; who, in conjunction with the great council, were empowered to compel him to observe the charter, and, in case of resistance, might levy war against him, attack his castles, and employ every kind of violence, except against his royal person, and that of his queen and children. All men, throughout the kingdom, were bound, under the penalty of confiscation, to swear obedience to the twenty-five barons; and the freeholders of each county were to chuse twelve knights, who were to make report of such evil customs as required redress, conformably to the tenor of the Great Charter.q The names of those conservators were the earls of Clare, Albemarle, Glocester, Winchester, Hereford, Roger Bigod, earl of Norfolk, Robert de Vere, earl of Oxford, William Mareschal the younger, Robert Fitz-Walter, Gilbert de Clare, Eustace de Vescey, Gilbert Delaval, William de Moubray, Geoffrey de Say, Roger de Mombezon, William de Huntingfield, Robert de Ros, the constable of Chester, William de Aubenie, Richard de Perci, William Malet, John Fitz-Robert, William de Lanvalay, Hugh de Bigod, and Roger de Montfichet.r These men were, by this convention, really invested with the sovereignty of the kingdom: They were rendered co-ordinate with the king, or rather superior to him, in the exercise of the executive power: And as there was no circumstance of government, which, either directly or indirectly, might not bear a relation to the security or observance of the Great Charter; PLL v5 (generated January 22, 2010) 302 http://oll.libertyfund.org/title/695 Online Library of Liberty: The History of England, vol. 1 there could scarcely occur any incident, in which they might not lawfully interpose their authority. John seemed to submit passively to all these regulations, however injurious to majesty: He sent writs to all the sheriffs, ordering them to constrain every one to swear obedience to the twenty-five barons.s He dismissed all his foreign forces: He pretended, that his government was thenceforth to run in a new tenor, and be more indulgent to the liberty and independance of his people. But he only dissembled, till he should find a favourable opportunity for annulling all his concessions. The injuries and indignities, which he had formerly suffered from the pope and the king of France, as they came from equals or superiors, seemed to make but small impression on him: But the sense of this perpetual and total subjection under his own rebellious vassals, sunk deep in his mind, and he was determined, at all hazards, to throw off so ignominious a slavery.t He grew sullen, silent, and reserved: He shunned the society of his courtiers and nobles: He retired into the Isle of Wight, as if desirous of hiding his shame and confusion; but in this retreat he meditated the most fatal vengeance against all his enemies.u He secretly sent abroad his emissaries to inlist foreign soldiers, and to invite the rapacious Brabançons into his service, by the prospect of sharing the spoils of Eng...
View Full Document
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