TOWER of London. Accidents. 85

TOWER of London. Accidents.

The King was counselled by some, to make haste unto them; but Simon Sudbury, Archbishop of Canterbury, Lord Chancellor, and Robert Hales, of St. John's, Treasurer, affirmed, That it was not meet for the King to go to such a rude Company, but rather some Order to be taken for their Suppression. Which when the Commons heard, being moved to a furious Rage, they swore, That they would go seek the King's Traitors, to take off their Heads. Forthwith they took their Journey towards London, and came to Southwark; where they felled all the Places of that Borough, and in the Country about. They spoiled the Archbishop's Palace at Lambeth, for Despite they bare him. The Lord Maior of London and Aldermen (fearing the City's Spoil) decreed to shut up the Gates: But the Commons of the City, especially the poorer People, favouring the Commons of the Country, would not suffer the Maior to shut them out, but threatned Death to them that went about it.

Ex Chron. Dun.

Insolent Fury is easily moved.

The Palace of the Archbishop at Lambeth spoiled.

All the Night following, to wit, Corpus Christi Even, the Rebels enjoyed free Ingate and Outgate, and encouraged the Commons of London, as also of all the Realm, to favour their Cause. For, said they, their Purpose was but to search out the Traitors of the Land, and so to cease. The more Credit was given to their Speeches, because they took nothing from any Man, but at a just Price; and if they found any Man with Theft, they beheaded him. The Morrow after, to wit, on Corpus Christi Day, coming into the City, talking with the Commons of procuring Liberty to them, and apprehending of Traitors, (as they termed them) especially the Duke of Lancaster; they shortly got all the poorer Citizens to conspire with them. And the same Day after it was waxen somewhat warm, and that they had tasted divers Wines, (for the Citizens did set open their Cellars for them, to enter at their Pleasure;) they exhorted each other, That going to the Savoy, the Duke of Lancaster's House, (to the which there was none in the whole Realm to be compared, for Beauty and Stateliness) they might set it on fire, and burn it down to the Ground.

The Commons of London heartned on by the Rebels.

The poorer Citizens join with the Rebels, and burn the Savoy, the D. of Lancaster's House.

Straitway they ran thither, and setting Fire on it round about, applied their Travel to destroy it. And that it might appear to the Commonalty, that they did not any Thing for Avarice; they caused to be proclaimed, That none (upon Pain of losing his Head) should presume to convert to his own Use, any Thing that was there; but that they should break such Plate, and Vessels of Gold and Silver, (as was there in great Plenty) into small Pieces, and then to throw the same into the Thames, and so all (whatsoever) was destroyed. But one of the Rebels (saith Henry Knighton) contrary to the Proclamation, took a goodly Silver Piece, and hid it in his Bosom; But another that espied him, told his Fellows, who forthwith hurled him and the Piece of Plate into the Fire, saying, We be zealous of Truth and Justice, and not Thieves or Robbers. Also, Two and thirty of those Rebels entred a Cellar of the Savoy, where they drank so much of sweet Wines, that they were not able to come out again in Time; but were shut in with Wood and Stones, that mured up the Door; where they were heard crying and calling Seven Days after, but none came to help them out, till they were all dead.

The Rebels would have nothing to any private Man's Use.

Ex Hen. Kinghton.

The Rebels burn one of their Fellows.

Two and thirty Rebels mured up in a Cellar.

These things being done, they brake down the Place called the New Temple at the Bar, in which Place, Apprentices at the Law were lodged; for Anger which they had conceived against Sir Robert Hales, Master of St. John's Hospital; unto which Hospital of St. John's the Temple belonged, where many Monuments, which the Lawyers had in their Custody, were consumed with Fire. After a Number of them had sacked this Temple; what with Weariness of Labour, and what with Wine, being overcome, they lay down under the Walls and Housing, and were slain like Swine; one of them killing another for old Grudges, and other also made quick Dispatch of them.

The New Temple of London burnt, in anger to Sir Robert Hales.

The Rebels murther one another.

Another Troop (in the mean time) set fire on the Noble House of St. John, at Clerkenwell, causing it to burn by the Space of Seven Days together, not suffering any to quench it. On Friday, they burned the Manor of Highbury, the whole Number of the Common People being (at that time) divided into Three Parts. Of the which Division, one Part was attending to destroy the Manor of Highbury, and other Places belonging to the Priory of St. John: Another Company lay at the Mile's-End, East of the City. The Third kept at the Tower Hill, there to spoil the King of such Victuals as were brought towards him. The Company that were assembled on the Mile's-End, sent to command the King, That he should come to them without Delay, unarmed, or without any Force; which if he refused to do, they would pull down the Tower, neither should he escape alive. The King taking Counsel, with a few unarmed, went toward them in great Fear on Horseback; and so the Gates of the Tower being set open, a great Multitude of them entred into it.

The Priory of St. John, beyond Smithfield, burnt.

The Manor of Highbury burnt.

The Rebels divided into Three Bands.

The Rebels command the King, and he goeth to them to the Mile's-End.

There was (at the same Time) within the Tower Six Hundred armed valiant Persons, and expert in Arms, and Six Hundred Archers; all which did quail in Stomach, and stood as Men amazed. For the Basest of the Rusticks (not many together, but every one by himself) durst presume to enter the King's Chamber, and his Mother's, with their Weapons, to put in fear each of the Men of War, Knights and other. Many of them went into the King's Privy Chamber, and played the Wantons, in sitting, lying and sporting them on the King's Bed: And that which is much more sawcily, invited the King's Mother to kiss with them; yet durst none of those Men of War (strange to be said) once withstand them. They went in and out like Masters, that were but base Slaves, and of most vile Condition.

The Rebels entred into the Tower of London, and their impudent Behaviour there.

Their bold Insolence to the King's Mother.

While these rude Wretches sought for the Archbishop, running up and down with terrible Noise and Fury; at length finding one of his Servants, they charged him to bring them where his Master was, whom they named Traytor. The Servant not daring to displease them, brought them to the Chapel; where, after Mass had been said, and having received the Communion, the Archbishop was busy in his Prayers: For not unknowing of their Coming and Purpose, he had passed the last Night in Confessing of his Sins, and in devout Prayers. When therefore he heard that they were come, with great Constancy, he said to his Men; Let us now go; surely it is best to dye, when it is no Pleasure to live. And with that, the Tormentors entring, cried, Where is the Traitor? The Archbishop answered, Behold, I am the Archbishop, whom you seek; not a Traitor. They therefore laid Hands on him; and dragging him out of the Chapel, they drew him forth of the Tower Gate, to the Tower Hill; where being compassed about with many Thousands, and seeing Swords about his Head drawn in excessive manner, threatning Death to him, he spake unto them in these Words:

The rebels sought for the Archbishop of Canterbury.

The Archbishop dreadless of the Rebels Cruelty; and his Speeches with them.

The Archbishop is fetch'd out of the Tower, and dragged to the Tower Hill.

What is it (Dear Brethren) you purpose to do? What is mine Offence committed against you, for which you will kill me? You were best to take heed, that if I be killed, who am your Pastor, there come not on you the Indignation of the just Revenger, or (at

The Archbishop's Words to the Rebels on Tower Hill.