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Jousts in Smithfield, A.D. 1388 [?]

 

[NOTE: Steele, the editor of the Brut, dates this event 1388; but it is likely that the tournament took place in 1390.]
In this foresaid parliament, and in the twelfth year of King Richard's reign, he had announced and ordained general jousts, that is called a tournament, of lords, knights, and squiers. And these jousts and tournament were held at London in Smithfield, for all manner of foreigners, of whatever land and country they were, and thither they were right welcome; and to them and to all others was held open household and great feasts; and also great gifts were given to all manner of foreigners.

And they of the king's side were all clothed in matching outfits; their coats, their armour, shields, and their horses and trappings, all was white harts, with crowns about their necks, and chains of gold hanging there upon, and the crown hanging low before the hart's body; the which hart was the king's livery that he gave to lords and ladies, knights and squiers, in order to know his household from other people.

And at this first coming to their jousts, twenty four ladies led these twenty four lords of the Garter with chains of gold, and all in the same livery of harts as is described above, from the Tower on horse back through the city of London into Smithfield, where the jousts should be done. And this feast and jousts was unrestricted and open to all those that would come, of what land or nation that ever he were; and this was held during twenty-four days, at the king's own cost; and these twenty-four lords to answer to [i.e., accept the challenges of] all manner of people that would come thither.

And thither came the Earl of Seint Poule of France, and many other worthy knights with him of diverse parts, splendidly arrayed. And out of Holland and Hainaut came the Lord Ostrenaunde, who was the Duke's son of Holland, and many other worthy knights with him, both of Holland and Hainaut splendidly arrayed.

And when these feasts and jousts were done and ended, The king thanked these foreigners and gave them many great gifts; and then they took their leave of the King and of other lords and ladies, and went home again into their own country, with great love and much gratitude.

 

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Last modified: July 8, 2006
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Gold Texts on this page prepared and maintained by L. D. B enson (ldb@wjh.harvard.edu)