Tuesday, 13 September 2016

Garnier - Becket Prepares to Leave for England, 1170


Guernes de Pont-Sainte-Maxence. Emanuel Walberg, ed. (1922) La vie de Saint Thomas le martyr. C.W.K. Gleerup.  pp. 154–.
https://archive.org/stream/laviedesaintthom00gueruoft#page/154/mode/1up


917 Si tost cum saint Thomas fu acordez al rei,
De sun fuc li sovint, qui petiz ert en fei,
Qui aveit meserré par seignuril desrei.
El païs enveiad sun angele devant sei,
Qui sa veie esneast e ostast le fangei. 4585


918 Johan de Salesbire i aveit enveié,
Qui le sene ad tenu mult plenier del clergié ;
E de part l'arcevesque lur aveit denuncié
Qu'il les asoleit tuz, clers e lais, del pechié
Qu'as escumenïez orent communïé. 4590

919 Kar ne voleit baisier clerc ne lai ensement
Qui as Brokeis eüst eü cumunement.
Ensement ad asols les moines del covent
Qui rien orent eü a cels parchunement :  
Les suens voleit baisier senz enpeechement. 4595

920 Quant saint Thomas s'en dut en Engleterre aler,
Li reis Henris le dut a Ruem encontrer,
Si cum il out pramis, faire deniers livrer.
Unes iteles lettres li ad faites porter ;
Bien les vus savrai lire, ses volez escuter : 4600

921 " Henris, reis des Engleis, des Normanz ducs e sire,
Saluz a l'arcevesque Thomas de Cantorbire.
Loëwis reis de France, si cum j'ai oï dire,
Ad somuns tute s'ost par trestut sun empire ;
Volt aler en Auverne pur ma gent desconfire. 4605

922 " Mes hummes volt destruire e ma terre essillier.
E mi ami de France le m'unt fait bien nuncier ;
Auvernaz m'unt mandé que jo lur voise aidier.
Encontre vus dui estre a vostre repairier,  
A Ruem : saciez bien que mei l'estuet laissier. 4610

923 " E pur ço vus envei un mun clerc mult privé,
Johan d'Oxeneford, qui jo ai comandé
Qu'il vus maint el païs. E par lui ai mandé
Al jovene rei Engleis, Henri mun fil l'ainzné, 
Bien e en pais aiez vostre proprieté.  4615

924 " S'il i ad rien mespris de ço qu'a vus apent,
Mes fiz vus en fera aveir adrecement.
A mei e a mun fil novelë un gramment
De vostre demurance, puet cel estre u l'um ment ;
Pur ço vus vendreit mielz haster, men escïent. " 4620

925 A Lokas furent faites tels letres cum ci a.
Li reis Henris meïsmes les testimonia.
Quant sainz Thomas les vit, sun eire apareilla ;
As Franceis prist cungié, en Engleterre ala.
Johans d'Oxeneford l'i conduist e mena. 4625

926 Li trei prelat qui n'orent l'arcevesque point chier.
Mult duterent, quant sorent qu'il deveit repairier.
A Cantorbire vindrent parler e conseillier
A dan Randulf del Broc, e pur lui enticier
Qu'il deüst l'arcevesque e les suens maistreier. 4630

927 Dunc firent ses serjanz e chevaliers armer,
E od els les menerent tresqu'a Duvre sur mer.
Firent les porz cergier e guaitier e guarder,
Que, se li arcevesques i volsist ariver,
Qu'il li fussent encontre, prez de lui desturber, 4635

928 De destrusser ses hummes, de ses coffres cergier,
De prendre tuz les briefs que il pout purchacier
A Rome ; ja un sul ne l'en voldrunt laissier.
Les porz firent issi cil trei prelat guaitier ;
Mal encontre voleient lur pere apareillier. 4640

929 E qu'il fuissent plus fort a la grant felunie,
Dan Rainald de Warenne unt pris a compaignie,
Gervais de Cornehelle, qui dunc ne l'ama mie,
Randulf del Broc. Tuit trei jurent le fiz Marie,
Se l'arcevesque encontrent, il i perdra la vie. 4645

930 Tut ç'a hum l'arcevesque e mustré e nuncié ;
Car si ami l'oïrent, qui l'en unt acointié.
De nule rien purquant ne s'en ad esmaié ;
Mais de sun païs out e tendrur e pitié,
E des francs qui li ourent en sun eissil aidié. 4650

931 De sun païs veeir aveit grant desirier,
E des suens ramener od lui e conseillier,
Que li reis Henris out sis anz fait essillier.
A Witsant est venuz ; ala par le gravier
Pur esguarder l'oré e pur esbanïer. 4655

932 Li deiens de Buluigne, - Milun l'oï numer, -
Est dunc venuz a lui un message mustrer.
" Sire, fait il, ne vieng passage demander,
Mais de part mun seignur un message aporter,
Le cunte de Buloigne, qui ça me fist aler. 4660

933 " Ço vus mande mis sires que vus bien vus guaitiez.
Mult avez enemis d'armes apareilliez ;
Par tuz les porz de la estes forment guaitiez.
Se vus i arivez, tuz serez detrenchiez
4665 U mis en grant fermine e en chartre lanciez. [p. 144]

934 - Beals fiz, fait sanz Thomas, bien le puis afichier
Que, s'um me deveit tut par pieces detrenchier,
Ne voldreie jo l'eire qu'ai comencié, laissier,
Ne pur poür de mort ne pur autre encombrier.
4670 Ne turmenz ne perilz ne m'en puet mais chacier.

935 " Trop a pluré m'iglise sun pastur, ço m'est vis,
Qui set anz l'a pluré e les nuiz e les dis.
Mais or requier les miens, se ainc fui lur amis,
Qu'a m'iglise me portent, se n'i puis aler vis,
4675 Se si hastivement de cest siecle partis.

936 " E si faites mes livres ensemble od mei porter ;
Se jo ainz nes servi dunt se puissent loer,
Pur ma possessiun m'i voillent honorer.
N'um ne puet en la fin a l'umme plus doner
4680 Que ço qu'il plus desire, s'um li volt graanter. "

937 Quant l'arcevesque sout, e bien li fu nuncié,
Qu'a Dovre erent li trei qui tant l'unt guerreié,
Les briés a l'apostolie baille un vaslet a pié,
U cil trei prelat erent suspendu e lacié ;
4685 Comande qu'il past mer. Cil n'i ad rien targié.

938 Cil est venuz a Dovre ; les evesques trova.
Lur ures ourent dites. L'arcevesque araisna :
" Sire, fait il, la pape, qui m'a enveié ça,
Cum avez deservi, par mei vus salua.
Tenez, lisiez 4690 ces letres, k'enveïes vus a.

939 " Hastez vus ; la besuigne de Rome demorez !
D'apel e del devin mestier estes sevrez. "
Dunc se turna as dous : " Seignurs, fait il, tenez !
J'ai le transcrit des lettres, einsi n'eschaperez !
4695 Qui vus ad de commune ecclesial getez. "

940 Il lur bailla le brief. Quant il i unt trové
Qu'il esteient einsi de lur mestier sevré,
De duel e de coruz furent descoluré. [p. 145]
Pur poi Randulf del Broc n'out le vaslet tué ;
4700 Mais il nel pout trover, car Deus l'ad desturné.

941 Roberz li segretains rest a Dovre arivez.
Pris fu pur ço qu'il n'ot briés del rei aportez,
E qu'il ert senz congié en Engleterre entrez.
El message, ço dit, le primat ert alez ;
4705 Pur sa cruiz aporter contre lui s'est hastez.

942 " Vient il ? funt il. - Oïl, fait Robert, veirement. "
Funt il : " Mais tu deüsses venir plus sagement ;
D'altre seignur deüsses aveir avoement. "
Le segrestain unt mis par fiance erramment
4710 Qu'al premier flot irad ariere, s'il a vent.

943 La pais le rei Henri ot saint Thomas seüre
De raler el païs, de raveir sa dreiture.
Mais s'ele fust bien clere e senz nule emposture,
N'eüssent fait as suens desonur ne enjure ;
4715 Mais conuistre i pout l'un mult tost l'encloeüre.

917 Soon after St. Thomas had come to an accord with the king, he remembered his flock, who were of little faith, who had strayed because of the presumptious behaviour of their overlord. He sent his angel [messenger] home before him, who was to clear the way and wash away the mud.

918 And it was John of Salisbury whom he sent there, and who summoned a general plenary synod of the Church [in Canterbury]. And on behalf of their archbishop he [John] proclaimed that he [Becket] had absolved them all, both clergy and laity of the sin of having had associations with those who had been excommunicated:

919 The reason was that he did not wish to give the kiss of peace to any cleric or layman who might still be sinfully guilty of having contact with the de Broc's. Likewise he absolved even those monks of the [his own] abbey who might have had some recent dealings with these people: to his own he wanted to give the kiss of peace without any impediment.

920 When St. Thomas was about to return to England, he had arranged to meet King Henry at Rouen, as had been promised, to give some money to him. But this letter was handed to him instead. I can read it to you, if you want to listen:

921 <<Henry, king of the English, of the Normans duke and sire, to Thomas, archbishop of Canterbury, greetings. I have heard it said that Louis, the king of the France, has summoned his army from all over his empire. He wants to invade Auvergne and conquer my people.

922 He wants to kill my men [vassals] and lay waste to my land. My friends in France have told me of this, and the Auvergnois have asked me to come and help them. I should meet with you in Rouen when I return, but know for now I have to give it up. 4610

923 <<And because of this I am sending you one of my closest clerks, John of Oxford, whom I have told to go with you [when you return to England]. And through him I have commanded the Young King of England, Henry my son, who is my eldest, well and in peace to help you recover your property. 4615

924 If any wrong is committed regarding this after you have returned, my son will ensure you get reparation.>> 
<<Many things have been reported to me and my son about your delay [in returning], lies maybe, but because of this I think you should better hurry.>> 4620

925 Such was contained therein, the letter that was written in Loches; King Henry testified the same. After it was read to St. Thomas, he made ready to travel: taking leave of the French, he was brought to England, guided by John of Oxford. 4625

926 The three prelates who did not at all the archbishop hold dear, were much afraid, when they learned that he would return, They went to Canterbury to speak with and consult Sir Ranulf de Broc, and to entice him to abuse the archbishop and his men. 4630

927 Then they armed his servants and knights, and they brought them with them all the way to Dover by the sea. There they were charged with keeping watch over and guarding the ports, so that, if the archbishop wanted to land there they were ready to come up against him and detain him. 4635

928 They were to strip his men, search through his baggage and seize all the letters they could find from Rome [the Pope]. They were not to let one through. It was thus how these three prelates had the ports watched. They wanted to set up a nasty reception for the father [of their Church] 4640

929 And so they might be more committed to the great wickedness, Lord Reginald de Warrene took into his companionship Gervais de Cornhill, who at that time did not love him [Thomas Becket] much, and Ranulf de Broc. All three swore by the Son of Mary that if any of them encountered the archbishop, he was to kill him. 4645

930 All this was shown and told to the archbishop by people, for if friends heard about it, they would make it known to him. But none of this caused him to have any dismay, except that towards his own country he showed some weakness and sorrow, and also towards the French [free people/France?] who had helped him during his exile. 4650

931 Of his country he had a great desire to see it, and to bring back his men with him and to take counsel from those that king Henry had six years [earlier] sent into exile. At Witsand, where he had come; he took a walk along the shingle beach looking out for a favourable wind, as well as for the exercise. 4655

932 The dean of Boulogne, Milo I have heard him called, then came up to him to give him a message: <<Sire [archbishop],>> he said, <<I have come not to demand passage, but from my lord, the Count of Boulogne, who advises you not to make the crossing, and on his behalf I have brought you a message from him. 4660

933 <<It is my lord's desire to make known to you by letter that you should be on your guard well, for enemies have made ready armed men in all the ports, and who are standing by carefully watching when you are going to arrive there; where [if you do] you will all either be cut to pieces or taken to a large fortress and thrown into a cell.>> 4665

934 <<My dear son,>> said St. Thomas, <<well can I affirm it that, if one were to chop me up part by part into pieces, I would not abandon the journey that I have started, neither the fear of death nor other obstacle, neither the torment, nor danger can stop me from my aim. >> 4670

935 Too much has my Church shed tears for its pastor, so it seems to me, who for seven years has cried both day and night for it. But I now ask my people, if I was their friend before, that they carry me [back] to my church, if I cannot reach there alive, if I am parted from this world suddenly. 4675


936 And have my books brought back together with me: even if I have not served my people as much as they might have appreciated, it would be an honour to me for them to accept my bequest, for there is nothing more that a man can give at the end [of his days] than to bequeath that which he loves most, if that wish may be granted to him. 4680

937 When the archbishop learned, and well it was told to him, that at Dover there were the three [prelates] who had fought him so many times, he entrusted the letter from the Pope to a foot servant, [the letter] in which these three prelates had been suspended and bound [forbidden to perform divine office]; [the servant] was ordered to cross the sea, and nothing was to delay him doing this.4685

938 The [servant] reached Dover; he found the bishops who were saying their hour [of prayer]. He addressed the archbishop [of York]: <<Your grace,>> he said, << The Pope has sent this [letter] through me, in the manner you deserve through me he greets you. Take and read this letter which he has sent to you..>> 4690

939 << Hurry up: you are delaying the business of Rome! From your calling and [performance of] divine service you have been severed.>> Then he turned to the other two, <<My lords,>> he said, << take them! I have a copy of the letter [for each of you]: also you do not escape, you are thrown out of the ecclesiastical community [excommunicated].>> 4695

940 He delivered [to each of] them the[ir] letter. When they found themselves cut off from their ministry, they turned pale with grief and anger. For a few moments, Ranulf de Broc might have had the servant killed, but he could not find him, as God had moved him away from there. 4700

941 Robert, the sacristan, also arrived at Dover. He was arrested for he was not carrying a letter from the kin, and was without formal leave to enter England. [The reason he had come]as messenger of the primate [Becket] was to fetch his cross in preparation for his return. 4705
[Robert the sacristan was in charge of the Treasury of Canterbury Cathedral]

942 <<So he's coming?>> they said.
<<Yes,>> said Robert truly.
They said: <<But you ought to have arrived in a more advised manner with the consent of another lord.>>
The sacristan was quickly released on [his] trust that he would go back on the first high tide, if there was wind. 4710

  
943 The peace agreement that king Henry had made with St. Thomas was [for him to be able] to return to the country [England] and recover his rightful due. But if the safe conduct had been made sincerely and without deceit, his men would not have been subjected either to dishonour or injury; but he was very quickly to learn of the [true] nature of his letter of authority.

References

The Life and Martyrdom of Saint Thomas Becket by John Morris, (1885) 2nd Edition pp. 372 https://archive.org/stream/lifemartyrdomofs00morrrich#page/372/mode/1up
https://archive.org/stream/lifemartyrdomofs00morrrich#page/372/mode/1up


https://archive.org/stream/courthouseholdit00eyto#page/148/mode/1up

William of Canterbury
Materials for the History of Thomas Becket Volume 1 p.86-8
https://archive.org/stream/materialsforhist01robe#page/86/mode/2up


Bocke, Mary Annette, "An Annotated Translation of the Life of Saint Thomas, the Archbishop of Canterbury By William, a Monk of Canterbury" (1946).
Master's Theses. Paper 57.Book 2
http://ecommons.luc.edu/luc_theses/57

Opera. Parker. 1845. pp. 300–.

CTB Volume 2 - #322 p. 1338-9
King Henry to Archbishop Thomas of Canterbury
Loches, early Nov 1170

John Allen Giles (1846). The Life and Letters of Thomas À Becket: Now First Gathered from the Contemporary Historians. Whittaker. pp. 292–.


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