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Como William Marshal venceu a batalha de Lincoln?

Como William Marshal venceu a batalha de Lincoln?

A invasão da Inglaterra por Guilherme, o Conquistador, é inevitável em qualquer história de cinco minutos do país, mas o que é pouco conhecido é que o Príncipe Luís da França quase igualou seu antecessor 150 anos depois.

A invasão do Príncipe reivindicou quase metade do país, incluindo Londres, e apenas o brilho do Regente do Rei William Marshal preservou o reino da Inglaterra por séculos na batalha decisiva de Lincoln.

Estranhamente, a invasão realmente começou com aquele documento inglês - a Magna Carta. Em junho de 1215, quando foi assinado pelo rei João, o monarca reinante já havia perdido todas as terras de seu pai na França e alienado os Barões, levando-o a ser humilhante forçado a assinar este documento que limita seu poder.

Um curta-metragem que reflete sobre os temas e eventos que envolveram a assinatura da Magna Carta pelo rei João em 1215.

Assista agora

O começo da guerra

Poucos meses depois, no entanto, o fracasso de João em cumprir a Magna Carta causou alvoroço entre seus poderosos Senhores e o que é conhecido como a Primeira Guerra dos Barões começou.

Uma rebelião da nobreza em 1215 foi ainda mais séria para o monarca reinante do que pode parecer, pois o sistema feudal da época significava que ele confiava nesses homens para manter seu poder.

Cada um deles era, em essência, um mini-rei, com suas próprias linhagens orgulhosas, exércitos particulares e autoridade quase ilimitada sobre seus domínios. Sem eles, John não poderia travar uma guerra de forma eficaz ou manter qualquer controle sobre seu país, e a situação tornou-se rapidamente desesperadora.

No entanto, a Inglaterra era um país que precisava de um novo rei para que os Barões tivessem legitimidade na tentativa de depor João, e então eles se voltaram para Luís, filho do rei da França - cujas proezas militares lhe renderam o título de "o Leão" .

Naqueles anos, apenas 150 depois que a Inglaterra saxônica foi conquistada por invasores normandos, convidar a família real francesa para governar não teria sido visto como a mesma ação traidora que teria sido nos séculos posteriores.

A nobreza governante da Inglaterra e da França falava francês, tinha nomes franceses e freqüentemente compartilhavam linhagens, o que significa que os dois países eram mais intercambiáveis ​​do que em qualquer outro momento da história.

Luís inicialmente hesitou em se envolver na Guerra Civil Inglesa e apenas enviou um destacamento de cavaleiros, mas logo mudou de ideia e partiu com um poderoso exército em maio de 1216.

Agora em grande desvantagem numérica, John tinha pouca escolha a não ser fugir para a velha capital saxônica de Winchester, deixando a estrada para Londres aberta para o exército de Louis.

Louis rapidamente se entrincheirou na capital, onde muitos líderes rebeldes - incluindo o rei da Escócia - vieram homenageá-lo e proclamá-lo rei da Inglaterra na Catedral de São Paulo.

Sentindo a virada da maré, muitos dos apoiadores restantes de John desertaram e se juntaram a Louis, que tomou Winchester no final de junho e forçou o rei a fugir para o norte. No final do verão, toda a metade sudeste da Inglaterra estava sob ocupação francesa.

Mudança da maré

Dois eventos nos últimos meses de 1216 ajudaram a aumentar alguma esperança para os legalistas, no entanto. O primeiro foi a sobrevivência do Castelo de Dover. O pai de Luís, o rei da França, estava demonstrando interesse desapaixonado pela luta através do canal e escreveu para seu filho zombando dele por tomar todo o sudeste, exceto seu porto mais importante.

Em julho, o príncipe chegou ao castelo, mas sua guarnição bem abastecida e determinada resistiu a todos os seus esforços para tomá-lo à força nos meses seguintes, enquanto o escudeiro do condado Guilherme de Cassingham reuniu uma força de arqueiros rebeldes para assediar as forças sitiantes de Luís .

Em outubro, o príncipe desistiu e voltou a Londres e, com Dover ainda leal a John, os reforços franceses teriam muito mais dificuldade para desembarcar nas costas inglesas. O segundo evento, no final daquele mês, foi a morte do rei João, deixando seu filho de nove anos, Henrique, como único herdeiro.

O reinado de Henry

Os Barões perceberam que Henrique seria muito mais fácil de controlar do que o cada vez mais teimoso Louis, e seu apoio aos franceses começou a diminuir.

O novo regente do rei, o formidável cavaleiro William Marshal de 70 anos, correu para coroá-lo em Gloucester e prometeu aos vacilantes Barões que a Magna Carta seria respeitada, tanto por ele quanto por Henrique quando ele atingisse a maioridade. Depois disso, a guerra se tornou uma questão mais simples dos ingleses, em sua maioria unidos, contra os franceses invasores.

A Igreja do Templo no centro de Londres é a personificação física dos Cavaleiros Templários, uma ordem religiosa que também treinou como monges guerreiros. Esta é uma história forte na narrativa e repleta de batalhas e sede de sangue.

Assista agora

Louis não ficou ocioso, enquanto isso, e passou as primeiras semanas de 1217 na França reunindo reforços, mas uma resistência mais determinada ao seu governo - encorajada pelo popular marechal - diminuiu com a força de seu exército. Furioso, ele levou metade de seu exército para sitiar Dover novamente e enviou a outra metade para tomar a cidade estrategicamente importante de Lincoln, no norte.

A segunda batalha de Lincoln

Uma cidade fortificada com um castelo no centro, Lincoln era um osso duro de roer, mas as forças francesas - comandadas por Thomas, Conde de Perche - tomaram rapidamente toda a cidade, exceto o castelo, que teimosamente resistiu.

Marshal estava ciente desses acontecimentos e convocou todos os barões ingleses do norte para trazer seus homens e se reunir em Newark, onde reuniu uma força de 400 cavaleiros, 250 besteiros e um número desconhecido de infantaria regular.

O conde de Perche decidiu que seu melhor curso de ação seria tomar o castelo de Lincoln e então resistir até que Louis viesse para reforçá-lo e, portanto, não conseguiu encontrar o marechal no campo de batalha. Este foi um erro grave, pois ele havia superestimado o tamanho do exército do marechal.

A batalha ocorreu em 20 de maio de 1217. Enquanto as forças de Thomas continuavam a atacar freneticamente o castelo, os besteiros do marechal alcançaram o portão da cidade e o tomaram com saraivadas de fogo fulminante, antes de se posicionar nos telhados e disparar contra as forças sitiantes.

Presos entre o castelo hostil e os cavaleiros e a infantaria do marechal, muitos foram massacrados, incluindo o conde. Thomas recebeu a oferta de rendição, mas preferiu lutar até a morte, uma decisão corajosa que deve ter conquistado o respeito do experiente soldado marechal.

David Carpenter se juntou a Dan no podcast para examinar um dos monarcas mais notáveis ​​da Inglaterra. Com apenas nove anos de idade quando subiu ao trono em 1216, David explica como Henrique era pacífico, conciliador e profundamente religioso. Seu governo foi restringido por limites estabelecidos pela Magna Carta e pelo surgimento do parlamento.

Ouça agora

Os monarquistas também conseguiram capturar a maioria dos barões ingleses ainda leais ao príncipe, garantindo que o novo rei Henrique III enfrentaria menos oposição quando a guerra acabasse.

Os poucos sobreviventes franceses então fugiram para o sul em direção a Londres, enquanto as tropas vitoriosas do marechal saqueavam a cidade por aparente lealdade ao Louis, no que se tornou eufemisticamente conhecido como "Feira de Lincoln". A maioria dos franceses fugitivos nunca alcançou seu objetivo, pois foram emboscados e massacrados por aldeões furiosos ao longo do caminho.

Derrota de Louis

Com metade de seu exército desaparecido e Dover ainda resistindo, a posição de Louis tornou-se insustentável. Depois que mais duas frotas de reforço foram afundadas nas batalhas marítimas de Dover e Sandwich, ele foi forçado a deixar Londres e desistir de sua reivindicação ao trono no Tratado de Lambeth.

Marechal, entretanto, morreu em 1219 após um serviço inestimável a cinco reis diferentes da Inglaterra, e Henrique governaria por mais cinquenta anos, sobrevivendo à revolta de outro Barão na década de 1260.

Ao longo dos próximos séculos, o resultado da Batalha de Lincoln garantiria que o caráter da elite governante da Inglaterra se tornasse cada vez mais saxão e menos francesa; um processo mostrado pelo rei Henrique nomeando seu filho e herdeiro Eduardo, um nome real inglês tão antigo quanto o tempo.


William Marshal, 2º Conde de Pembroke

William Marshal, 2º Conde de Pembroke (Francês: Guillaume le Maréchal) (1190 - 6 de abril de 1231) foi um nobre inglês medieval e foi um dos fiadores da Magna Carta. Ele lutou durante a Primeira Guerra dos Barões e esteve presente na Batalha de Lincoln (1217) ao lado de seu pai William Marshal, 1º Conde de Pembroke, que liderou as tropas inglesas naquela batalha. Ele encomendou a primeira biografia de um cavaleiro medieval a ser escrita, chamada L'Histoire de Guillaume le Mareschal, em homenagem ao pai dele.


INTRODUÇÃO

Os ingleses cavalgaram para a batalha alegremente, como se fossem para um torneio. O sol da manhã do primeiro sábado após o Pentecostes brilhou nas cruzes brancas costuradas em suas túnicas, pois esses homens eram cruzados, recém-encolhidos e com a certeza do céu se caíssem em ação. Diante deles estava a massa extensa do Castelo de Lincoln, muito castigada por máquinas de cerco hostis, pois o exército de bloqueio na cidade além incluía cavaleiros e engenheiros franceses, os melhores da Europa. Mas onde estavam os franceses, geralmente tão avançados em um torneio? Talvez eles tivessem calculado mal a força do exército que se aproximava, menos de mil ao todo, enganados pelos escudos sobressalentes e estandartes voando das carroças que seguiam os guerreiros.

Batedores cavalgavam de um lado para outro, falando com os defensores leais do castelo e rsquos, sondando as antigas muralhas da cidade em busca de uma maneira de entrar. Besteiros se infiltraram no castelo e no portão externo, mas esse era um caminho estreito demais para os cavaleiros. A vanguarda do conde de Chester desviou para o portão norte, enquanto o corpo principal do exército de alívio seguiu em frente em direção à parede oeste. Lá, o belicoso bispo de Winchester havia encontrado um portão indefeso, descuidadamente fechado por uma muralha, perto demais do castelo para os sitiantes observarem de perto. Quando os principais sargentos, soldados profissionais que trabalhavam em troca de dinheiro, desmontaram para puxar as pedras soltas empilhadas contra as vigas do velho Portão Oeste, não havia olhos hostis para vê-los.

Os atacantes irromperam tão repentinamente que seu próprio líder ainda precisava colocar o capacete. William Marshal, Conde de Pembroke, & lsquoThe Marshal & rsquo, tinha setenta anos, mas era vigoroso o suficiente para ter sido escolhido o guardião do reino e de seu rei menino, Henrique III. & lsquoAguarde por mim & rsquo ele gritou & lsquowhile eu recebo meu elmo. & rsquo William & rsquos homens não pararam, entretanto. Eles avançaram para a cidade, matando os sitiantes e o engenheiro-chefe enquanto ele colocava uma nova pedra na funda de sua máquina. Para não ser deixado para trás, o marechal esporeou seu cavalo, abrindo um caminho com três lanças nas fileiras inimigas, conduzindo todos à sua frente. Passando pelo castelo, os ingleses dobraram à direita no espaço aberto antes da catedral, para encontrar uma grande massa de cavaleiros franceses e ingleses rebeldes. Um dos últimos quebrou sua lança em William Longsword, conde de Salisbury, mas o marechal desferiu um golpe tão forte que ele escorregou de seu cavalo e fugiu para se esconder. Besteiros apareceram nas paredes e nos telhados do castelo, abatendo os cavalos dos cavaleiros inimigos abaixo como tantos porcos abatidos. Os homens do conde de Chester, tendo quebrado seu caminho através de outro portão, lançaram seu peso na batalha. Cavaleiros sem cavalo foram arrastados por correntes. Faíscas voaram quando espadas se chocaram com espadas ou ricochetearam em capacetes.

Enquanto os cavaleiros adversários recuavam, William agarrou a rédea de seu comandante, Thomas, Conde de la Perche, & lsquoa homem extenuante em armas e tirado de sangue real, que ainda não tinha atingido a idade de trinta & rsquo (Waverley Annals) Chamado a se render, ele se recusou a fazê-lo, fazendo grandes juramentos. Provocado além da resistência, Sir Reginald Croc, um cavaleiro valente, perdeu a paciência e passou a ponta da espada pelos buracos dos olhos do capacete do contador. Em um último espasmo, Thomas atingiu o marechal três golpes de duas mãos na cabeça, amassando seu capacete e caiu morto. Este foi um desvio inesperado do roteiro: os principais cavaleiros raramente eram mortos sem controle William e o conde eram primos de primeiro grau, e todos lamentavam ao vê-lo morto.

A perda de seu comandante foi um golpe fatal para os sitiantes, que recuaram pela encosta íngreme em direção ao rio Witham. Eles se reuniram no meio do caminho, apenas para quebrar novamente quando os homens do marechal & rsquos emergiram entre o castelo e a catedral, e o conde de Chester apareceu em seu flanco direito. O exército derrotado fugiu para o sul descendo a High Street até o Bargate, fortuitamente bloqueado por uma vaca perdida. Mais de 300 cavaleiros franceses e rebeldes foram capturados, embora apenas três homens importantes tenham morrido na luta. Duzentos cavaleiros em pânico escaparam para Londres, vendo marechais em cada arbusto. A batalha mais decisiva da história medieval inglesa, depois de Hastings, foi vencida com menos custo em vidas humanas do que muitos torneios.

A vitória desordenada de William Marshal e rsquos em Lincoln no sábado, 20 de maio de 1217 foi a façanha final de um dos homens mais notáveis ​​de uma época repleta de figuras gigantescas: Henrique II, rei da Inglaterra, sua consorte Eleanor da Aquitânia e seus filhos : Henry & lsquoThe Young King & rsquo, Richard & lsquoCoeur de Lion & rsquo e John & lsquoSoftsword & rsquo. Personagens mais duvidosos incluíram John & rsquos líder mercenário Fawkes de Br & eacuteaut & eacute, nomeado a partir da foice que ele supostamente usou para matar seu primeiro homem, ou o mestre pirata e necromante francês Eustace o Monge, cuja habilidade de se tornar invisível não o salvou da decapitação sumária no entranhas de sua nau capitânia.

William começou a vida durante a chamada Anarquia de meados do século XII, o filho mais novo e pobre de um proprietário de terras em Wiltshire: um barão ladrão descrito por um bispo local como & lsquoa membro do inferno e raiz de todo o mal & rsquo. William teve que abrir seu próprio caminho, combinando um braço forte com um olho calculista e cabeça fria. Sabemos sobre sua ascensão de um poema épico: l & rsquoHistoire de Guillaume le Mar & eacutechal, referido abaixo como História. Composto logo após a morte de seu sujeito em 1219, esta é a primeira biografia vernácula sobrevivente da época medieval a apresentar um leigo não pertencente à realeza. Escrito por um poeta profissional ou trov e egravere chamado John, provavelmente de Touraine, suas fontes eram lembranças dos próprios contos do marechal & rsquos de seus primeiros dias, o testemunho ocular de seus seguidores íntimos e documentos perdidos há muito tempo. Juntos, eles fazem o História um registro único da vida de um cavaleiro errante e grande magnata feudal.

Escapando por pouco da morte como refém aos cinco anos de idade, William foi aprendiz de armas na Normandia, fazendo fortuna no circuito de torneios internacionais, onde ganhou a reputação de & lsquot o melhor cavaleiro do mundo & rsquo. Esse elogio de um observador francês é notável: a justa era um esporte dominado pela França. A Inglaterra era considerada um país pobre para a criação de cavaleiros. A carreira de William & rsquos decolou com sua entrada no serviço real. Ele foi ferido defendendo a Rainha Eleanor contra renegados Poitevin, resgatado e nomeado tutor militar do herdeiro de Henrique II, conhecido como o & lsquoYoung King & rsquo, atuando como seu gerente do torneio. Após a morte prematura do Young King & rsquos, William vestiu seu manto de Crusader & rsquos na Terra Santa. Quando o futuro Ricardo I se rebelou em 1189, William foi um dos poucos a apoiar o & lsquoOld King & rsquo até o fim.

Apesar disso, William se tornou uma figura chave na corte de Ricardo, casando-se com a herdeira de vastas propriedades no País de Gales e na Irlanda, e atuando como juiz real durante a ausência do rei na Cruzada e como conselheiro militar na guerra sem fim com o rei Filipe Augusto da França . Na morte de Richard & rsquos, William desempenhou um papel importante na ascensão de seu irmão John, sendo recompensado com o Conde de Pembroke. Sua reputação e moderação o ajudaram a sobreviver a acusações de traição após a perda da Normandia. Apesar da inimizade de John & rsquos, William permaneceu fiel durante os distúrbios que levaram o rei relutante a fazer as concessões sem precedentes consagradas na Carta Magna.

Foi a fidelidade de William & rsquos, bem como sua bravura e longevidade, que persuadiram os barões leais da Inglaterra a confiar-lhe a regência na morte de John & rsquos. Não era uma emergência comum. João levou seus barões além da revolta, a ponto de oferecer a coroa a Luís, o Delfim, filho mais velho de Filipe Augusto. Na primavera de 1217, as tropas francesas e rebeldes dominaram a maior parte do sudeste da Inglaterra, incluindo Londres, Windsor e Winchester. Dover e Lincoln foram sitiados. A crise representou a ameaça mais grave para a independência da Inglaterra entre a Conquista Normanda e a Armada Espanhola. Se Luís tivesse tido sucesso, a Inglaterra poderia ter se tornado uma província francesa, assim como Languedoc havia feito após a batalha de Muret em 1213. Aproveitando o momento, no entanto, Guilherme esmagou o exército do norte de Dauphin & rsquos em Lincoln, enfrentando ruas íngremes demais para o tráfego moderno. Em pânico, Louis retirou-se de Dover e convocou reforços da França. Dois meses depois, eles foram interceptados no mar e destruídos, forçando Luís a se retirar. Nunca mais os invasores estrangeiros penetrariam tão profundamente no território inglês.

A vitória de William & rsquos foi mais do que apenas um sucesso militar. Ele já havia reeditado a Magna Carta, um mês após a morte de John & rsquos, minando a plataforma política dos rebeldes. Ele confirmou novamente depois de Lincoln, sujeitando permanentemente o poder arbitrário do rei ao império da lei. Sem a Magna Carta, o governo parlamentar e o direito consuetudinário inglês não teriam se desenvolvido como o fizeram. Os revolucionários americanos e franceses do século XVIII não teriam nenhum exemplo constitucional para inspirá-los. Pode não ter havido nenhum Discurso de Gettysburg ou Declaração Europeia dos Direitos Humanos. Na época da batalha, os governantes da Inglaterra falavam francês, como faziam desde 1066. Uma vitória francesa em Lincoln poderia ter atrasado o surgimento de uma identidade cultural inglesa distinta por mais um século. Sem o patrocínio de uma nobreza anglófona, não poderia ter havido Chaucer e, portanto, nenhum Shakespeare.

O cargo de William & rsquos em Lincoln eleva-o do status de campeão esportivo internacional, ou outro magnata egoísta, ao de salvador de seu país. Se seu início de carreira o tornou uma superestrela em seu próprio tempo, sua dramática conclusão, com seu significado de longo prazo para a Inglaterra e o mundo, deve torná-lo um herói nacional hoje. As vitórias de William & rsquos, entretanto, são moralmente ambivalentes. Como as de Oliver Cromwell, elas ocorreram durante uma guerra civil entre ingleses, subvertendo as narrativas tradicionais da história inglesa como um desfile glorioso. Henrique III foi um rei pacífico que preferia pinturas a justas. Ele passou a se ressentir e menosprezar o campeão do torneio que preservou seu trono. O clã Marshal caiu em desgraça e, na falta de herdeiros homens, no esquecimento histórico.

Lincoln é um raro exemplo de batalha medieval com consequências duradouras. A maioria das guerras na Idade Média foi vencida por ataques e cercos. Na única grande batalha de sua carreira, William mostrou uma compreensão notável dos princípios militares de mobilidade, concentração e surpresa, atacando Lincoln enquanto as forças do Dauphin & rsquos estavam divididas, ganhando acesso à cidade através de um antigo portão que o inimigo havia negligenciado. Uma vez lá dentro, ele combinou com sucesso a ação de mísseis de besteiros nos telhados com a ação de choque nas ruas abaixo. Lincoln é mais indicativo de como os soldados ingleses lutaram na alta Idade Média do que as vitórias inúteis da Guerra dos Cem Anos, que atraem tanta atenção.

Os estudos existentes sobre o marechal não dão atenção suficiente aos aspectos militares de sua vida. Sidney Painter e rsquos William Marshal: Cavaleiro Errante, Barão e Regente da Inglaterra apresenta uma visão romantizada da carreira de Marshal & rsquos: seu cavalheirismo era calculista e às vezes brutal. Georges Duby e rsquos Guillaume le Marechal ou le meilleure chevalier du monde (traduzido como A Flor da Cavalaria) trata o marechal como um simplório muscular. David Crouch e rsquos Guilherme, o Marechal: Cavalaria, Guerra e Cavalaria enfoca os aspectos políticos e administrativos da carreira de William & rsquos, tratando batalhas e campanhas como incidentais.

Nenhum deles faz uso do História& rsquos extenso detalhe de lutas reais e falsas para definir a carreira de William & rsquos no contexto militar de sua época, ou olha além da narrativa da família Marshal para avaliar sua contribuição para as guerras anglo-francesas intermináveis ​​das décadas de 1190 e 1200. Quais eram as relações do & lsquofinest cavaleiro & rsquo com os desonestos monarcas João e Filipe Augusto? Como ele resolveu a contradição entre o individualismo do cavaleiro errante e a prudência exigida do conselheiro real? A classe baronial foi freqüentemente retratada como consistindo de reacionários obtusos. o História& rsquos lucky survival oferece uma oportunidade única de desafiar essa caricatura. Anteriormente disponível apenas em francês médio, ou em um pr & eacutecis do século XIX, ele apareceu recentemente em versos ingleses modernos com todas as facilidades acadêmicas. Com a aproximação do 800º aniversário de Lincoln e rsquos, o momento parece certo para reconsiderar a reputação de campeão esquecido da Inglaterra e rsquos.


Eventos do 800º aniversário - 2019

Existem vários eventos marcando o aniversário de William:

Sábado, 11 de maio de 2019 Exposição Pop-up William Marshal no Abbey Gateway, Reading

Junte-se aos Friends of Caversham Court Gardens e dê uma olhada dentro do Abbey Gateway medieval recém-restaurado. Em maio deste ano é o 800º aniversário da morte de William Marshal em Caversham. Saiba mais sobre "O Maior Cavaleiro" que, como regente do menino rei Henrique III, derrotou uma força de invasão francesa e garantiu a sobrevivência da Magna Carta. Por favor, observe que o Gateway não tem acesso sem degraus e há degraus e pisos irregulares.

Grátis, apareça (30 lugares no máximo por sessão, pode haver uma pequena espera)

Sábado, 11 de maio de 2019 Palestra à tarde: William Marshal, Reading Museum

Maio é o 800º aniversário da morte de William Marshall em Caversham. Seu corpo ficou em Reading Abbey até que foi transportado para o enterro na Temple Church em Londres. Descubra mais sobre sua vida nesta conversa fascinante com a Dra. Elizabeth Matthew, da Reading University.

Terça-feira, 11 de junho Palestra à noite: A vida de William Marshal, Thameside School, Harley Rd

Junte-se à Caversham and District Residents Association para uma palestra ilustrada de Tom Asbridge da Queen Mary University of London, autor de The Greatest Knight.


A batalha de Lincoln Fair

PORQUE
O conflito do rei John com seus poderosos barões estava na raiz do conflito conhecido como a batalha de Lincoln Fair. O rei foi forçado por seus barões a assinar a Magna Carta em Runnymede em 1215. Louis, o delfim da França, enviou tropas para ajudar a causa dos barões.

As tropas francesas sitiaram o castelo, mas foram compradas pelo então policial, Nichola de la Haye. O rei João morreu em outubro de 1216 e as tropas francesas voltaram a Lincoln, tomaram a cidade em nome dos barões rebeldes e sitiaram o castelo.

A BATALHA
William Marshall, conde de Pembroke, agindo em nome do filho-rei Henrique III, avançou sobre Lincoln com um exército, chegando na manhã de 19 de maio. Os franceses dividiram suas tropas, algumas para continuar o ataque ao castelo e outras para enfrentar o avanço do exército monarquista. O exército de Marshall avançou em duas frentes, uma avançando para a cidade por meio do Arco de Newport, a outra forçando uma entrada para o castelo pelo portão oeste.

Esta última força então implantou besteiros nas paredes do castelo e enviou uma chuva de fogo sobre os franceses sitiantes, matando muitos dos cavalos do cavaleiro francês. O comandante francês, o conde de Perche, foi morto na confusão e as tropas francesas foram colocadas em fuga. Eles recuaram através do Bail, desceram a High Street e entraram em Wigtown, fora das muralhas da cidade.

De acordo com o cronista contemporâneo Roger de Wendover, mais de 300 cavaleiros do exército dos barões foram capturados, mas houve apenas três mortes: o conde de Perche, Reginald Crocus, um cavaleiro do partido do rei e um soldado desconhecido lutando pelos rebeldes.

OS RESULTADOS
O exército real vitorioso mostrou pouca misericórdia para com os habitantes da cidade. Lincoln foi saqueado e muitos de seus habitantes foram brutalmente mortos. Até a catedral foi saqueada. As tropas reais vitoriosas apelidaram o curto conflito de "Feira de Lincoln". A Batalha de Lincoln Fair provavelmente cimentou a vitória da facção real sobre os barões, embora talvez o sucesso do barão em forçar o rei João a assinar a Carta Magna pudesse ser considerado um sucesso mais duradouro!

Nota: Não confunda esta segunda Batalha de Lincoln com a Primeira Batalha de Lincoln, também conhecida como 'Justa de Lincoln', que ocorreu em 1141.


A Batalha de Lincoln 1217

Melvyn Bragg e convidados discutem a batalha em Lincoln em 20 de maio de 1217 entre as forças do menino-rei Henrique III, lideradas por William Marshal, e partidários de Luís da França.

Melvyn Bragg e convidados discutem A Batalha de Lincoln em 20 de maio de 1217, quando dois exércitos lutaram para manter ou ganhar a coroa inglesa. Esta foi uma luta entre as dinastias angevina e capetiana, que se seguiu aos sucessos capetianos sobre os angevinos na França. As forças do novo menino-rei, Henrique III, atacaram as de Luís da França, o pretendente apoiado pelos barões rebeldes. O regente de Henrique, William Marshal, tinha quase setenta anos quando liderou o ataque a Lincoln naquele dia, e sua vitória confirmou sua reputação como o maior cavaleiro da Inglaterra. Luís mandou reforços para a França, mas em agosto estes também foram derrotados no mar, na Batalha de Sandwich. Como parte do acordo de paz, Henrique reeditou a Magna Carta, que o rei João havia concedido em 1215, mas logo retirou, e Luís foi para casa, deixando os governantes anglo-franceses mais anglo-franceses e menos franceses do que ele havia planejado.

A imagem acima é de Matthew Paris (c1200-1259) de sua Chronica Majora (MS 16, f. 55v) e aparece com a gentil permissão do Mestre e Fellows do Corpus Christi College, Cambridge

Louise Wilkinson
Professor de História Medieval na Canterbury Christ Church University

Stephen Church
Professor de História Medieval na Universidade de East Anglia

Thomas Asbridge
Leitor de História Medieval na Queen Mary, University of London


O marechal nas cortes dos reis

Ele teria operado como uma espada de aluguel e guardado as casas e castelos dos nobres superiores e trabalhado como sua proteção pessoal. Foi durante este período que William Marshal deixou sua marca simplesmente por acaso. Ele e outro cavaleiro foram encarregados de escoltar uma mulher rica de um de seus castelos para outro. Na estrada, eles foram atacados e seu companheiro foi morto, William lutou contra cerca de 60 homens em armas e deu à nobre mulher tempo suficiente para escapar para seu castelo.

Ele foi ferido e capturado, mas a nobre mulher não era outra senão Eleanor da Aquitânia, esposa do rei Henrique II, selando para sempre seu destino de servir lealmente aos reis da Inglaterra, França e Irlanda. Ela pagou o resgate de William e ele se tornou parte da Corte Real mais poderosa da Europa. Também há rumores na história de que Marshal e Eleanor tiveram um caso de amor. Marshal era uma figura bonita, alta e impressionante, medindo mais de 1,8 m de altura quando a altura média de um homem durante a época medieval era de aproximadamente 5'7 ", Marshall deve ter sido uma visão intimidante no campo de batalha.

Eleanor da Aquitânia contratou William Marshal para ser o tutor de seu segundo filho no mundo dos torneios medievais. William serviu ao seu lado por muitos anos. Henrique, o mais jovem, era o segundo filho de Leonor da Aquitânia e do rei Henrique II, foi coroado durante a vida de seu pai e era conhecido como rei Henrique, o Jovem, mas era um rei sem reino.

Ele nunca recebeu nenhum poder significativo de seu pai e isso causou uma cisão entre eles. Ele era obcecado por torneios medievais e era guiado pelo marechal. Ele lutou com seu pai e irmão e morreu sem nunca fazer as pazes com o rei Henrique II. Ele tinha feito o juramento dos Cruzados e em seu leito de morte ele deu seu manto a William Marshall, acredita-se que ele tenha segurado a Cruz dos Cruzados dos Cavaleiros Templários. Ele pediu ao leal marechal que repitasse este manto no Santo Sepulcro, em Jerusalém, e presume-se que o marechal atendeu ao seu pedido moribundo.


William Marshal

Você não pode escrever romances sobre a Idade Média sem encontrar referências à família Marshal. Eu li um comentário dizendo que a família explodiu como fogos de artifício magníficos nos céus da Inglaterra do século 12 e início do 13 e foi embora rapidamente. É uma descrição muito apropriada. O descendente mais famoso da família é o grande William Marshal e sua história parece o roteiro de um filme épico.

William cresceu em um mundo incerto pela guerra civil entre os primos reais Stephen e Matilda. No entanto, seu pai tinha um forte controle sobre suas terras no Vale Kennet e, durante aqueles anos de formação no berçário, William teria uma vida familiar estável cercado por irmãos e com seus pais por perto. John Marshal não era um pai ausente.

A grande mudança aconteceu quando William tinha cinco ou seis anos. John Marshal havia fortificado seu castelo em Newbury. Ninguém sabe agora onde ficava esse castelo, embora eu tenha uma forte suspeita pessoal de que ele fica em Speen, nos arredores da cidade moderna. Onde quer que seja sua localização precisa, este castelo ficou no caminho do Rei Stephen. Seu exército parou diante de seus muros e sitiou. No entanto, os defensores lutaram bravamente e, obviamente, seria um osso duro de roer - embora rompesse eventualmente. Uma trégua foi arranjada e John Marshal perguntou se ele poderia pedir permissão a sua senhora, a Imperatriz Matilda, para se render, porque essa era a coisa honrosa a fazer (peça permissão). Stephen concordou, mas não confiou em John e disse que teria reféns dele, incluindo um filho de sua casa. Ele levou William - o que é interessante. Minha própria sensação é que ele não levou um dos meninos mais velhos porque eles não eram do sangue de Patrick Earl de Salisbury, mas eram alevinos menores na mente de Stephen.

Assim que John entregou os reféns, ele começou a encher o castelo até as vigas com homens e suprimentos, porque não tinha intenção de se render. No momento em que ele fez isso, a estrada para Wallingford se abriu e John Marshal não era o tipo de homem que desistia. Alguns anos antes, ele havia perdido um olho em combates pesados, defendendo uma rota de fuga para a Imperatriz. Quando Stephen voltou na hora marcada para exigir o castelo, John o desafiou e se recusou a entregá-lo. Furioso, Stephen mandou dizer a John que ele enforcaria seu filho. John made the infamous reply that he did not care about his little boy because had the ‘anvils and hammers’ to produce even finer sons. Personally I believe there was far more to this speech than meets the eye, but that’s for discussion in my forthcoming notes on John Marshal.

William was duly taken off to the gallows, but King Stephen couldn’t bring himself to hang the child. William was full of charm and perky questions. He wanted to play games with Stephen’s barons and with Stephen himself. There’s an epic poem about William’s life called The Histoire de Guillaume le Mareschal. It’s from this we know about the Anvils and hammers speech and the entire hostage situation. There is a delightful scene in the poem where William and the King play ‘Knights’ with some plantain leaves.

Stephen’s tent was ‘Strewn with grass and flowers of a variety of colours. William looked at the flowers, examining them from top to bottom. Happily and cheerfully he went about gathering the ‘knights’ growing on the plaintain with its broad, pointed leaves. When he had gathered enough to make a good handful, he said to the King: My dear lord, would you like to play ‘knights?’
‘Yes,’ he said, ‘my little friend.’
The child immediately placed some on the King’s lap. Then he asked: ‘Who has the first go?’
‘You my dear little friend,’ replied the King. So then he took one of the knights and put his own against it. But it turned out that in the contest, the King’s knight lost its head, which made William overjoyed.’ Stephen seems to have become attached to Willliam and took him into his own household and there the boy remained for around two years, serving as a page.

The war ended with agreement between King Stephen and the Empress Matilda’s son, Henry, that Henry should inherit the throne when Stephen died. This happened in 1154 and William’s boyhood now continued on a level course – presumably at home – until he reached his mid teens. At this stage he was sent away to be trained in the household of Guillaume de Tancarville, chamberlain of Normandy, to whom he was distantly related. William remained here in training, learning the knightly arts and was eventually knighted around the age of 21. We are told that he was tall, well made, had a good seat in the saddle and was brown-haired with an olive complexion. We are also told that he had a reputation for a big appetite and being a slugabed. His nick-name was apparently ‘Gaste-viande’ or ‘Greedy guts.’ I can’t help thinking of adolescent youths I have known not so far from home with prodigious appetites and a capacity for slumber until midday if allowed. Nothing changes!

As the situation in Normandy calmed down, Guillaume de Tancarville found himself with an embarrassment of knights on his hand and William was basically made redundant. He shipped himself home and went to see his family, including his older full brother John (his two older half brothers having died) and his sisters. By the time he returned home his father was dead. We don’t know his mother’s death date. John Marshal junior doesn’t seem to have wanted young William at home – perhaps he was jealous of this young gun with his charmed life, home from the wars, trailing flash war horses and glory behind him. Perhaps William cramped his style. Whatever the reason, William didn’t stay long but sought employment with his uncle Patrick, Earl of Salisbury who was preparing to go to Poitou and was on the lookout for likely knights. William being kin and with proven battle experience went straight onto the shipping manifesto.

While in Poitou, the young William came into frequent contact with the Queen of England, the famous and infamous Eleanor of Aquitaine. She had several of her children with her, including her eldest sons Henry and Richard. The latter was her designated heir and later to become the great Coeur de Lion.

One day in 1168, while escorting the Queen between castles in the company of his Uncle Patrick, they were attacked by members of the de Lusignan family who were in rebellion against Eleanor and the Angevin faction. Patrick, who was not wearing his mail, was ridden down and killed. Eleanor made a bid for freedom and William stood in the path of her attackers and gave her time to escape. Although he fought like a lion, he was eventually wounded in the thigh, overpowered and taken for ransom. He had a hard time of it and had to bandage his wounds with his own leg bindings. At one particular castle, a woman took pity on his plight and brought him fresh bandages hidden in a loaf of bread.

He hadn’t been abandoned by his own side though, and Queen Eleanor paid his ransom and took him into her household. William was soon appointed as a companion to her eldest son, Henry who, at 15 was crowned as official successor of King of England. This was done in his own father’s lifetime so that there would be no quibble about who inherited the throne. William quickly settled into the Young King’s household, becoming his tutor in chivalry.

As usual with the Angevin kings, there was inter-family strife and it wasn’t long before the Young King was kicking over the traces and deciding he would like more than just a title. He wanted the power to go with it and rebelled against his father. William stood by his young lord, and even knighted him as the conflict kicked off. As with most of the Young King’s ambitious designs, it came to a sticky end. His father was victorious and the rebellion fizzled out, having caused physical damage to land and property and emotional damage all round. The Young King was made to stay at his father’s side for a while to learn governance but found the whole thing tedious and sought permission to go to France and join the round of the tourney circuits. His father wasn’t best pleased but let him go.

Now came William’s heyday as he set out on the path to becoming the greatest tourney champion of his time. Under his tutelage and his command, the Young King’s ‘team’ became invincible on the European tourney circuit. Tourneying and jousting in the 12th century wasn’t what we imagine from seeing the Hollywood version – a show-piece pageant of one on one in an enclosed arena, but took place over several acres, often involving entire villages. It was big, joyous, brawling and reached its height in the 1170’s and 1180’s. By the 1220’s shortly after William’s death, his biographer said that ‘Errantry and tourneying have given way to formal contests.’

At first the ‘England’ team was soundly trounced because they were the new kids on the block and had to learn strategy and to work cohesively, but William was a good general as well as an extremely gifted individual fighter and he soon had his company knocked into shape so that they became invincible on the tourney field. William’s biographer details several fascinating incidents from this period of William’s life. There’s the well known one about William getting his head stuck inside his helm after a particularly vigorous tourney at Pleurs and having to put his head down on an anvil while a blacksmith worked the helmet off. ‘the smith with his hammers, wrenches and pincers, was going about the task of tearing off his helmet and cutting through the metal strips, which were quite staved in, smashed and battered.’ Another incident tells of knights all dancing together while waiting for the tourney to begin. A young herald who was singing an accompaniment, uttered the refrain ‘Marshal give me a horse!’ William promptly left the gathering, mounted his own horse, galloped off to where some knights were practising, and having tumbled one of the hapless men off his mount, brought the beast back and gave it to the herald. Another incident shows William at a post-tournament feast. He arrived there on a particularly large and handsome horse which he gave to a lad outside to look after. Unfortunately someone stole the horse and William had to run after the thief on foot. There followed a nocturnal chase through the streets and down side alleys. William finally caught his man, gave him a thrashing and recovered his horse. When the other party-goers wanted to string the man up, William dissuaded them, saying that the thrashing was enough punishment (since the man has lost the sight of an eye).

William success was a two-edged sword though. The other knights in the Young King’s retinue became jealous of his popularity and decided to put a fly in the ointment. The Young King himself was also peeved at William’s glory because he felt it put him in the shade, which was not the name of the game. William’s jealous rivals suggested to their young lord that William was having an affair with his wife, Marguerite, daughter of the King of France. William was denied the right to defend himself and banished in disgrace from the Angevin court. Did William have an affair with his lord’s wife? Nós não sabemos. On the one hand there was the accusation and the banishment. Marguerite herself was sent back to Paris. On the other, William was known to have some very jealous rivals and would he have been mad enough to ruin his career by committing a treasonable offence? Whatever the story behind his banishment, William made use of his time by going on pilgrimage to the shrine of the Three Magi at Cologne. Other men offered him position in their retinues but he declined them.

The Young King rebelled against his father once more – the inter-family quarrelling about lands and power was as continuous as dusk following dawn, and suddenly William’s military skills were desperately needed. He was summoned to return by the Young King, and did so, although he arrived via visits to the English and French court and bearing letters confirming the established sovereigns’ trust in his good character. William served the Young King throughout the strife, even helping young Henry to rob shrines when the money to pay the mercenaries ran out, the most scandalous being the robbing of the shrine of Our Lady at Rocamadour. But if money was running out, so was luck and time. The Young King contracted dysentery and died in Martel in June of 1183. At the last he was repentant of his sins and begged William to take his mantle to Jerusalem and lay it at the tomb of the Holy Sepulchre in expiation. William agreed – he had sins of his own to atone for – and set out almost immediately, pausing only to see his lord buried and to have a meeting with King Henry II.

William spent two years in the Holy Land. Nothing is known about his time there, other than that he vowed his body to the Templars (although he didn’t take Templar vows as such) and he bought his own burial shrouds of fine silk. These he kept with him for more than thirty years and told no one about them, not even his closest companions or his family.

On his return around 1186, he took up service again with Henry II, who was glad to have him back and gave him lands in the north of England and the care of at least two wards to give him responsibility and income. One was Jean D’Earley, an adolescent youth in need of fostering until he came of age. William made him his squire. Jean, even after he came into his inheritance, remained with William and became one of his staunchest supporters and friends. Another was Heloise of Kendal, an heiress with lands around Lake Windermere. Henry II may well have expected William to marry the lady, settle down in the north and keep an eye to the Scots border for him. William did indeed spend some time in those parts and began the process of founding a priory there on his own lands at Cartmel. But he didn’t take Heloise to wife, and we know from a letter Henry II wrote to William, that William had his eye on a greater prize than the lady Heloise, with whom he remained ‘just good friends.’ Henry promised William the heiress Denise de Berri, if William would come and fight for him.

William duly emerged from his northern retreat and rejoined Henry on the front line, but his interest was not on Denise, but on another heiress, Isabelle de Clare, who had vast lands in Normandy, on the Welsh borders and in Southern Ireland. Her mother was an Irish Princess and her father was Richard Strongbow, a great Norman baron, adventurer and warrior. Henry promised William he could have Isabelle, but it went no further than a promise.

The usual family wars meant that Henry found himself fighting his son Richard, and Richard, with the help of King Philip of France had gained the upper hand. A sick, worn out, angry and dejected Henry had to flee from le Mans as his son moved in to take the city. Richard was keen to capture his father and dashed after him. William stayed back to cover Henry’s retreat and when Richard was in danger of catching up and pushing through, William charged him and killed his horse. ‘When the count saw him coming, he shouted out at the top of his voice: ‘God’s legs Marshal! Do not kill me, that would be a wicked thing to do, since you find me here completely unarmed.’ The Marshal replied ‘Indeed I won’t. Let the Devil kill you! I shall not be the one to do it.’ This said, he struck the count’s horse a blow with his lance, and the horse died instantly.’ When Richard later protested that the Marshal had tried to kill him, William replied that he was not so much in his dotage that he didn’t know where to stick a lance!

Henry died not long after this and Richard, recognising the value of the loyalty that William had shown, promoted him to the ranks of the magnates by giving him Isabelle de Clare. His father might have promised, but Richard actually gave.

There were more than 20 years between William and Isabelle. He was 41, she was about 17, but their match seems to have been compatible and love does seem to have grown from it, from what we can glean from meagre mentions in William’s biographical poem, the Histoire de Guillaume le Mareschal. William married Isabelle in London, possibly at St Paul’s Cathedral in the summer of 1189 and then straightaway took her on honeymoon to a place called Stoke D’Abernon where one of his friends had a manor house. Here they stayed for several weeks getting to know each other and setting up their household, before returning to London to greet King Richard in the September.

The following year, William brought Isabelle with him to Normandy where in April she gave birth to the first of their ten children – a son named William for his father. A second son, Richard, followed in approximately 1191, then a daughter Mahelt (or Matilda), then two more sons, Gilbert and Walter. During this time, William was busy in the field serving Richard. When Richard went on crusade, William remained in England as one of several co-justiciars, responsible for keep the peace, and it was perhaps partly for this reason that Richard had raised him on high. At the same time he also raised William’s cleric brother Henry to the bishopric of Exeter. Unfortunately, William’s older brother John, had cast his lot with Richard’s brother, John Count of Mortain, Prince John, and died in 1194 – probably killed at the siege of Marlborough castle.

Although a great magnate, who could play the magnificent lord, William was comfortable within his own skin. He knew the things that mattered. Although as a mighty lord of the realm he could have chosen to use a huge fancy seal on his documents, he continued to use the small equestrian one that had served him as a penniless young knight. Perhaps to remind him where he came from – who knows. John’s reign was a complex and troubled one. Due to matters of personality and politics, John lost Normandy to the French. This gave William a serious dilemma. In order to retain his Norman lands, he had to swear allegiance to Philip of France. But this compromised him because he was then unable to fight for John, should John invade Normandy and try to regain his lands. John was angry with William for swearing to Philip and to cut a long involved story short, he took William’s two oldest sons as hostages for William’s good behaviour. Thus, history repeated itself. William himself had been a hostage. Now William Junior and young Richard Marshal were being kept at the King’s pleasure. William handed over his sons with seeming insouciance, saying that he was loyal to John and that a finger that wasn’t cut, could be bandaged, and would still be whole once the bandage was removed. He decamped to Ireland with Isabelle and the rest of his family – except for Mahelt, whom he married off just before they sailed, to Hugh Bigod, heir to the Earldom of Norfolk. She would have been been at the oldest not quite fifteen, but it is likely that she was actually thirteen or fourteen.

Once in Ireland, William set about sorting out his wife’s inheritance of Leinster. It was her dowry and what she would live on when he died. Since there was a twenty year age gap, it behoved him to see her well provided for. He had begun founding a port on the River Barrow that was to become New Ross and was to bring increased income into Leinster. The Justiciar of Ireland, a lord called Meillyr FitzHenry, was King John’s man and William’s enemy. Like John, he saw William’s arrival in Ireland as worrying. Meillyr had been encroaching on Leinster lands and had been doing much as he liked, but all this was in jeopardy now that the absentee landlord had shown up.

William had a real struggle on his hands with Ireland. Many of the barons did not have affinity or kinship ties with him and they were insular. They didn’t want some Johnny come lately tourney champion muscling in on their territory. The King tried to bring William down. He ordered him and Meillyr back to England, to the court, to settle their differences. William suspected something was going down and he left his best men behind to guard Isabelle, who was by now pregnant with their ninth child. He was wise to do so. Within a week of his leaving for England, Meillyr’s men, under instruction from their master, descended on New Ross and burned it down. They also set about a programme of plundering William’s lands. Fortunately, Jean D’Earley and the knights William had prudently left behind, were able to see off Meillyr’s men.

This was not what John and Meillyr wanted. The latter was sent back to Ireland from the English court with orders that William’s best men were to join their master in England. They declined to do so. William asked John’s permission to return to Ireland as Meillyr had done, but he was refused with malicious glee.

As winter descended, sea crossings to Ireland became very rough, so no news was forthcoming. John taunted William, inventing stories about how he had heard that William’s men had been defeated and killed and how the Countess was now a prisoner. William had to bear all this, unable to retaliate, not knowing if it were true, but he kept his cool and used the lessons of implacable calm learned from his father. He didn’t kick over the traces and he didn’t reply to the provocation. When news finally did come from Ireland, it was good news. Meillyr had gone down to defeat and William’s family and his knights were all safe. William never put a step wrong. He didn’t crow about his victory, merely sought quiet permission to go back to Ireland. John yielded and William went.

The barons wanted a written guarantee that John would observe their rights and govern in a proper manner. This is vastly simplifying the case, but is part of the essential drive. John was brought to sign that most famous of all documents – The Magna Carta. William is thought to have been behind some of the points involved. Whether he was or not, he was certainly involved in the negotiations between the two sides. John made moves to have the charter annulled because he said he had signed it under duress. Many of the barons continued in rebellion because they said John wouldn’t abide by the terms of the charter and true civil war broke out. William remained loyal to King John but his son, William Junior, chose the other side, as did his daughter’s marriage family the Bigods. The French King’s ambitious son, Louis, made a play for the English throne and the rebel barons offered it to him. They had managed to seize London and were in a bullish mood. Louis invaded to a strong welcome and set about making Southern England his own.

William continued stoically and steadily to support John as the country lurched deeper into civil war. Louis wasn’t having it all his own way and was finding it impossible to take Dover Castle. But then, following a few days of severe illness related to a stomach problem, John died at Newark, leaving his nine year old son, Henry, as heir to the disputed throne. Something had to be done and fast. The young boy was hastily crowned at Gloucester Abbey, using a crown belonging to his mother and various bits of regalia cobbled from here and there (his father’s treasure having gone AWOL, either while crossing the treacherous sands of the Wellstream Estuary, or having been looted while John lay dying at Newark.

Someone had to take the reins on behalf of the young Henry III and William was voted into the job. The only other real candidate was the Earl of Chester and although he was the younger man (William was by now around seventy to Chester’s mid forties). Chester had a sharper personality and often rubbed people up the wrong way, whereas most barons could work with William.

William thus set about reclaiming the country for the young king. He had breaches to close, an economy that had to begin functioning again, and he had to get rid of the French. He re-issued Magna Carta and offered amnesties to all who were willing to come and talk. He paid the army in what was left of the royal treasure at Corfe, and when he heard that Louis of France had split his forces and sent half of them up to Lincoln, he saw his chance and went for it. Under his command, the royal army came to Lincoln and here was fought the most decisive battle on English soil between Hastings and the Battle of Britain. If William’s army had lost on that day, a French king would have sat on the English throne. As it was, the French were severely trounced and the royalists were victorious. Louis was brought to sue for peace, although he still wasn’t entirely convinced and the royal army had to gird itself for battle again – this time at sea. Louis’ wife had sent him reinforcements, but an English fleet put out from Sandwich and destroyed the French supply ships. Defeated and with no more aces up his sleeve, Louis sued for peace and departed from England, leaving the country to the process of healing and repair.

William remained at the helm of government for another couple of years, but at the end of 1218 he fell ill in London and it soon became clear that this was going to be his last illness. Knowing this, he faced up to it with the same steadfastness, courage and dignity he had brought to every aspect of his life, and he had himself rowed upriver to his favourite manner of Caversham. Here, surrounded by his family, he spent the late winter and spring of 1219, making arrangements for the governing of the country, gradually cutting his ties with the world. His daughters arrived from their various marital households. There is a very moving scene in the Histoire de Guillaume le Mareschal where William asks for them to come to his chamber and sing for him, which they do, even though they are heartbroken.

Part of William’s preparation to die involved taking Templar vows. He must have known his death was on the cards – perhaps he’d started feeling unwell earlier than he let on to his family. A year before his death, he had Templar robes made, and kept them at the back of his wardrobe. ‘without anyone else knowing of its existence.’ Now, as death approached, he had them brought out and announced his intention of dying as a Templar. He also sent Jean D’Early to fetch the burial shrouds from a chest in Wales where they had been laid for safekeeping. After thirty years they once more saw the light of day and William told those gathered around him how he had brought them from the Holy Land. He was concerned that they weren’t ruined during the funeral journey and ordered his men to buy coarse grey burel cloth in which to cover them in case of rain.

He duly took the Templar oath, which meant that he could no longer accept the embrace of a woman. No longer could Isabelle comfort him with her touch. In the Histoire, there is an immensely moving parting scene between Isabelle and William where he tells her to kiss him one final time because she will never be able to do so again. ‘The earl, who was generous, gentle and kind towards his wife, the countess, said to her: ‘Fair lady, kiss me now, for you will never be able to do it again.’ She stepped forward and kissed him, and both of them wept.’

His body was borne in procession to Reading, to Staines, to the Temple Church in London and there interred with other knights of the order. His effigy is still there for those who wish to visit and pay their respects, although William’s bones no longer lie beneath it. The graves were disturbed by Henry III’s building work a few decades after William’s burial, and there have been other upheavals since, including bomb damage in World War II. Incendiaries almost put paid to the Temple Church, but it survived, and so did William’s effigy – battered but unbroken. Two of his sons keep him company – Gilbert and Walter, and they do not lack for visitors. Some tourists, are drawn to the church because of The Da Vinci Code, not knowing the true greatness at their feet, but others are aware of their history, and come for William. Eight hundred years later, The Greatest Knight still lives and keeps vigil.


Short Biography

Marshall was the son of John FitzGilbert (a junior noble). Born somewhere around 1146-1147 in Newbury Castle, the knight’s early childhood passed through turbulent and unpredictable circumstances before he eventually became a great servant. His birth happened in the historical period known as “The Anarchy” – it was a time when two rivals – King Stephen & Empress Matilda – competed fiercely for the throne.

Young Marshall escapes death by the skin of his teeth

Initially, the father of Marshall put his weight behind Stephen’s struggles to claim the throne. But due to a later change of mind, Marshall’s father backed Matilda’s side. When Stephen’s army laid siege to his father’s castle, they took little Marshall and held him, hostage, hoping to force his father to surrender. At that time, Marshall was probably 4-5 years old.

Death nearly visited the young man due to his father’s hard-heartedness. With the boy in their hands, Stephen’s army threatened to kill him. They kept the young Marshall in a torturing device (trebuchet) and vowed to crush him dead.

In the long run, Stephen (probably out of compassion), decided to release the innocent kid back to his father under the Winchester Peace Agreement of 1153.

William Marshall’s Journey to Knighthood

When Marshall reached the age of 13, he was taken to his mother’s cousin – William de Tancarcille – to undergo knighthood training. Tancarcille’s home was the official training ground for knights. The knight school became the proving ground on which William Marshall’s rich story found its setting.

The training taught Marshall the knightly code of conduct – the chivalric codes. There, he learned military skills in horse riding, weaponry, medieval laws, and many other important military tactics.

Having mastered the art of knighthood, William Marshall was officially made a knight in 1166. He kicked off his career by being a tournament knight. This was a breakthrough moment for Marshall his accomplishments included winning several bouts, capturing enemies, taking ransom, and gaining reputation. After a while, Marshall became the best version of himself, exuding confidence, fearlessness, and dignity.



How Abraham Lincoln Won Re-Election During the Civil War

Despite presiding over the bloody and tumultuous Civil War, President Abraham Lincoln never tried to postpone either the 1862 midterm elections (in which his Republican Party lost seats in Congress) or the 1864 presidential election. 

“We cannot have free government without elections,” he explained, 𠇊nd if the rebellion could force us to forego or postpone a national election, it might fairly claim to have already conquered and ruined us.”

Fealty to democracy, however, did not automatically endear him to voters, and his popularity waned as the twin victories at Vicksburg and Gettysburg became ever more distant. Critics particularly blasted a spring 1864 invasion of Virginia, when General Ulysses S. Grant’s force suffered so many casualties in such a short period that even Lincoln’s wife referred to him by the unflattering nickname, “the Butcher.” “The dissatisfaction with Mr. Lincoln grows to abhorrence,” an opponent wrote around that time.

Knowing that no president had won a second term since Andrew Jackson in 1832, challengers to Lincoln popped up both within the Republican Party and outside it. His own treasury secretary, Salmon P. Chase, began covertly campaigning against him as early as December 1863, garnering the support of several Republican congressmen who likewise believed in more aggressive measures to end slavery, use Black troops and implement Southern reconstruction. Chase soon was forced to drop out, done in by the release of two anti-Lincoln pamphlets that caused a public backlash against his candidacy.

Campaign poster depicting the Democratic ticket led by George McClellan

A few hundred Republicans unhappy with Lincoln, including abolitionist Frederick Douglass and suffragist Elizabeth Cady Stanton, next decided to form their own party, which they named Radical Democracy. Meeting in Cleveland in May 1864, they nominated for president General John C. Frémont, who had freed the slaves owned by Missouri rebels in 1861—well before the Emancipation Proclamation— only to be overturned by the White House. Among other things, the Radical Democracy Party called for equality regardless of race and confiscation of Confederate property.

Another, larger threat came from the Democrats, who mercilessly lambasted the military draft and emancipation of enslaved people, while also accusing Lincoln of violating civil liberties and strategically mismanaging the war. As part of their party platform, approved in late August at their convention in Chicago, they even called for a settlement with the Confederacy. 

�ter four years of failure to restore the Union by the experiment of war,” the platform stated, “justice, humanity, liberty and the public welfare demand that immediate efforts be made for a cessation of hostilities.”

For their presidential nominee, the Democrats chose George B. McClellan, Lincoln’s notoriously cautious former general-in-chief of the army who had been fired after failing to pursue the retreating Confederates from Antietam in 1862. An able organizer and trainer of troops, McClellan held a personal grudge against Lincoln. Yet he refused to endorse his party’s peace platform, writing that he 𠇌ould not look in the face of my gallant comrades … and tell them that their labors and the sacrifices of so many of our slain and wounded brethren had been in vain.”

Hoping to broaden his appeal among Democrats, Lincoln ran on the so-called National Unity ticket instead of as a Republican. At its convention in Baltimore, the party selected him a new running mate, rejecting Vice President Hannibal Hamlin in favor of Andrew Johnson, the Democratic governor of Union-occupied Tennessee. At the same time, it stole some of Frémont’s thunder by supporting a constitutional amendment to ban slavery and by insisting on the South’s unconditional surrender.

Anti-Lincoln campaign pamphlet

Nonetheless, Lincoln did not like his prospects, having received a number of pessimistic reports from political insiders. “I am going to be beaten … and unless some great change takes place, badly beaten,” he purportedly told a White House visitor. Reiterating on August 23 that defeat appeared 𠇎xceedingly probable,” he made the members of his cabinet sign a pledge to cooperate with the new president-elect to save the Union before the inauguration.

Just a week-and-a-half later, General William T. Sherman captured Atlanta, and this was followed up by a major Union victory in Virginia’s Shenandoah Valley. Suddenly, with the Confederacy on the ropes, the Democratic platform seemed harebrained. Meanwhile, Lincoln received an added boost when the foundering Frémont withdrew from the race.

In keeping with the protocol of the era, neither Lincoln nor McClellan openly campaigned for the nation’s highest office. But their supporters let the vitriol fly, with Republicans attacking the Democrats as essentially traitorous, and with the Democrats playing on fears of racial intermingling. One prominent anti-Lincoln cartoon, for example, depicted white men dancing at a ball with Black women.

Citizens went to the polls on November 8, re-electing Lincoln with 55 percent of the popular vote. He won 22 states and 212 electoral votes, whereas McClellan triumphed in only Kentucky, New Jersey and Delaware (for a total of 21 electoral votes). Notably, Lincoln received overwhelming support from the men in uniform, who voted by absentee ballot or by traveling home on furlough. 

“The election having passed off quietly, no bloodshed or riot throughout the land, is a victory worth more to the country than a battle won,” Grant wrote afterwards. Indeed, with Lincoln at the helm, the Confederacy collapsed the following April.


Assista o vídeo: When Georgia Howled: Sherman on the March (Novembro 2021).