FRODOARDUS REMRNSIS and Richerius (see Vol. I. p. 748, 749) furnish the main staple of French history, during the period which this volume comprehends. An account of the remarkable recovery of the last-mentioned work, has already been given (Vol. 1. p. 749), and he and his ingenious father, from whom he receives his traditions, have been repeatedly introduced in the text of the preceding pages. Both these Annalists were either actors in the transactions to which they bear record, or witnesses thereof: consequently, they are historical personages, and as such the reader has already made full acquaintance with them. Frodoardus departs at the commencement of a very eventful era, the year 966, when Lothaire espoused the Italian Emma. But Richerius, or Richer, the survivor, continues with us to the end -- you hear his dying words. -- My concluding chapter closes with the line extracted from the last passage Richerius penned.
Richerius alone discloses the complication of fraud, and treachery, and misfortune, which established the third dynasty upon the throne. He completely dispels the theory rendered so popular by Thierry's talent, and countenanced by another imaginative investigator. I allude to the hypothesis representing the Capetian Revolution as resulting from a resuscitation of the Celtic races, against the descendants of their Teutonic Conquerors, instigated by the antagonism between German and Gaul, which has now become the orthodox dogma -- and (unless a total change has recently ensued) is preached as such in all the Manuals and Epitomes which form the opinions of the rising generation.
From these two texts, that is to say, from Frodoardus and Richerius, I have mainly told the story throughout the volume. Their chronology is substantially adopted, save and except as to Norman affairs, concerning which their information is grudging, scanty, and inaccurate. Nor can it be doubted, but that very much matter concerning Normandy was slurred over by them, as opposed to French national feeling. Any reader desiring to test my narrative, may compare, page by page, my text with these Annalists as he proceeds. Nevertheless, it must be recollected that the writers do not impose upon themselves the necessity of arranging the transactions governed by each Calendar date, in strict sequence of time under that date. Moreover, years occasionally overlap each other, and we encounter many anachronisms, especially with respect to foreign transactions. Bouquet's chronological tables will give a ready reference to any passage quoted from the French historians by me. This same table affords the only compensation for the excellent Benedictine's elaborately defective plan, upon which subject I have enlarged elsewher (Ed. Rev. April 1847).
Amongst the minor, though important, sources of French history, as it advances, we must include Aimar or Adhemar de Chabannes. He was born at the commencement of the Capetian era (in the year 988), and belonged to a very distinguished family. His father, Count Raimomd, was illustrious amongst the nobles of his era -- and not less so his maternal uncle, after whom he was named. His Historia Francorum contains some curious reminiscences of the last Carlovingian times: and he is the only writer who records the diflidations of Charles-le-Simple, by the casting of the hawlm ; but it is principally for Aquitaine that Adhemar, whose work was never printed in entirety until included by Pertz in his collection, is very valuable. Another subordinate writer who, though principally concerned for Germany, gives us much matter for the history of France, is Baldericus Cameracensis, identified by his first Editor with Balderic, Bishop of Tournay, who flourished in the concluding era of the Carlovingian monarchy. We learn much from his Chronicon Cameracense et Atrebatense, concerning the warfare in Lorraine, between Lothaire and Otho II., as also concerning the fortunes of Charles in that country. Balderic is not by any means favourable to the Pretender.
Antient Norman history, that is to say, from the youth of Rollo to the death of Richard-sans-Peur, rests entirely upon Dodo of Saint Quentin's Acta Nomannorum. You may abandon the history of Normandy if you choose, but if you attempt the task, you must accept Dodo, or let the work alone. I have completely incorporated Dodo with the French and German authorities :- they absent, we should not have any dates; -- Dodo deserted, we are destitute of facts. Dudo's personal history becomes an important incident in the general history, and as such I have treated it in the body of my text. The work is supposed by his first editor to have been completed between 1015 and 1026. The extent of the "corrections" made by Asceline cannot be ascertained, but any how, the Gesta passed through at least two recensions, there being a manuscript in the Cottanian collection, which does not contain the poetry constituting so conspicuous a feature in the published text. Duchesne's edition (Rouen, 1619) is the only one, and very rare; and the liberality of the French government would be well employed, were the Ministre de l'Iustruction publique (who, we believe, directs the "Monumens Inedits ") to reprint the same.
From Dodo originated the Historia Normannorum, composed by Guillielmus Calculus, commonly quoted as Guillaume de Jumieges. He dedicates his work to the Conqueror, a fact which tells the era in which he flourished, and the influences under which he composed. A Monk of Jumieges, and unquestionably profiting from the traditions of the House, Guillaume grounded his work upon Dodo. His text of the Acta Normannorum was probably somewhat more ample than that published by Duchesne: and in the same manner that Dodo is in fact our only authority for the biography or history of the three first Dukes, to wit, Rollo, Guillaume-Longue-Epee, and Richard-sans-Peur, so is Guillaume de Jumieges, our only, or almost our only guide for the history of the three next, Richard-le-Bon; Richard the Third, distinguished by not having any epithet; and Robert-le-Magnifique, or le-Diable, the Father of William the Mamzer, or the Conqueror.
The first four books of Guillaume de Jumieges' work, which contain the history of the first three Norman Dukes, are mere abridgments from Dodo's text.
Guillaume de Jumieges speaks with great respect of Dodo as his predecessor;
and singularly enough, he completes his fourth book by a Colophon which he has
transcribed literally from Dodo's Colophon, at the termination of his work,
though such Dudonian Colophon is not found in Duchesne's text, the same being
to the following effect, -- "Hucusque digesta, prout a " Rodulpho
Comite hujus Ducis fratre magno et honesto viro, narrata, sunt
" collegi, quae scholastico dictamine scripta, relinquo posteris"
This same brief compendium has practically superseded the Acta-Normannorum of Dudo amongst all modern historians without exception. None of them meet Dudo except to scold at him. And the judgments passed upon both these victims of prudish criticism, may best be answered in Guizot's words as prefixed to the version of Guillaume de Jumieges published under his auspices:-
" Les erudits ont ambrement reproche a Guillaume, moine de 1'abbaye de
" Jumieges, d'avoir reproduit dams les premiers livres de son Histoire des
" 'Normands, la plupart des fables dont son predecesseur Dudon, doyen de
" Saint-Quentin, avait deja rempli la sienna. Si Guillaume n'eut ainsi fini,
" cette portion de son ouvrage n'existerait pas, car il n'aurait rien eu a y
" mettre; il a recueilli les traditions de son temps sur 1'origine, les exploits,
" les aventures des anciens Normands et de leurs chefs; aucun peuple n'en
" sait davantage, et n'a des historians plus exact sur le premier age de sa, vie.
" A voir la colere de dom Rivet et de ses doctes confreres, il semblerait que
" Dudon et Guillaume aient eu le choix de nous racouter des miracles ou des
" faits, une serie de victoires romanesques ou une suite d'evenemens reguliers,
" et que leur preference pour la fable soit une insulte a notre raison, comme si
" elle Etait obligee d'y croire. I1 y a a quereller de la sorte les vieux chroni-
" queurs une ridicule pedanterie; ils ont fait ce qu'ils pouvaient faire; ils nous
" ont transmis ce qu'on disait, ce qu'on croyait autour d'eux: vaudrait-il
" mieux qu'ils n'eussent point ecrit, qu'aucum souvenir des temps fabuleux ou
" heroiques de la vie des nations ne fut parvenu jusqu'a nous, et que 1'histoire
" neut commence qu'au moment ou la societe aurait possede des erudits capable
"de la soumettre a leur critique pour en assurer 1'exactitude? A mon avis,
" il y a souvent plus de verites historiques a recueillir dans ces recits ou se
" deploie l'imagination populaire que dans beaucoup de savantes disserta-
Out of these two prose Chroniclers, Dodo and Guillaume de Jumieges, arose two
poetical, or at least, rhythmical chronicles, which are as important as their
originals; both nearly coevals, and both encouraged by the first Plantagenet's
munificence. The earliest of these compositions bears the following title :-
" Ci commence l'estoire e la genealogie,
Des Dux qui uut este par ordre en Normandic "
Benoit, the writer, thus names himself at the conclusion of the "Fitte" containing the History of Guillaume-Longue-Epee, and thus he is denominated by his irritator and successor, Robert Wace. The worthy Abbe de la Rue first disinterred this very valuable composition. The work exists; only in a single manuscript till then slumbering in the British Museum, which, after he had described it, was again left to enjoy repose until roused by the French government, 1836. The Abbe de la Rue has identified Benoit with his namesake, the author of the Roman de Troye, one of the best, poems amongst the productions of the Trouveurs.
But this is a mere conjecture. We know nothing of Benoit, except what he himself discloses. He, like Guillaume de Jumieges, experienced the liberal patronage of Henry the Second, as we learn from his own words. So far as Dudo extends, Benoifs poem is with few exceptions based upon the Acta Normannorum; though there are many passages showing that the text upon which he worked was somewhat more extensive than that which has been rendered accessible by Duchesne's industry. Benoit abounds with vivid descriptive passages. Local knowledge and local traditions also assisted him. But Benoit rarely departs from the substantial narrative, of his original, and for all historical purposes, that original and the version should be treated as one; and this I have done, amalgamating the texts. Robert Wace, or Wacce, or Waice, or Waze, or Gasse, or Guace, -- I shall spare the other variations of his name, -- a cotemporary, a disciple, a translator, a successor, and to some degree a rival of Benoit, but also in many respects an original writer, runs nearly parallel with his teacher.
He lived under three Henrys, Dukes of Normmndy and Kings of England. Henry Beauclerc, the junior Henry, and Henry Plantagenet, his peculiar patron. All we know of him is derived from his own report. He was a Royal "Clerc lisant," an expression which has led to the conjecture that he was a Clerk, or as we now should say, a Master in Chancery. He devoted his talents and researches almost exclusively to poetical history; and the Brut, a free paraphrase of Geoffrey of Monmouth, constitutes the introduction to his metrical chronicle of Normandy and Anglo-Norman England.
This poem consists of two books. The first book contains the history of the Northmen anterior to Rollo, very brief, and written in the eight syllable measure. The second book commences with the peculiar history of Rollo; "Ci commenche a parler de Rou," and this epigraph is the title given by the author. He adopts Alexandrine assonant verses in this portion. This metre extends till the reign of Richard-sans-Puer, when the narrative breaks off with the transactions at the Fosse Givolde. This portion is mainly taken from Dudo. But here again we find very many facts collected either from a text somewhat differing from Dudo's printed text, or from local of other traditions. Such is the case with respect to the battle of the Fords, and Thibaut's invasion of Normandy. Subsequently, Wace depends mainly upon Guillaume de Jumieges, but also upon his own personal or traditionary knowledge. It is sufficient to observe that his narrative gains exceedingly in value, as it approaches to the conclusion, the whole being quoted as the Roman du Rou.
So much with respect to the primary sources of French and Norman history. It is now needful to indicate the aids and collections which may lighten the student's labour. As in my first volume, p. 735, I must make a general reference to the Benedictine and other historians of the French Provinces. For the present section of this work, those by Lobineau, and Morice, and Talandre, are peculiarly valuable, inasmuch as they contain the Breton Chronicles, properly so called, in extenso. Whenever Armorica is mentioned in my text, the reader will find in these works the warranty of my narrative. Daru (Histoire de Bretagne, Paris, 1826) may be convenient for those who wish to gain a cursory knowledge of Breton affairs.
With respect to the antient geography of Normandy, of which a knowledge is most essential, in consequence of the prominence of the numerous individuals who are localized by their possessions, I have found the best general aid in the late Mr. Stapleton's Introductions to the Norman Exchequer Rolls. These invaluable records, preserved amongst our own Archives, were published by the Society of Antiquaries (London, 1840-1842), and re-published by the "Societe des Antiquaires de Normandie." Mr. Stapleton's map of antient Normandy is peculiarly useful -- and the historical topography of the Pay de Caux and the Vexin -- the Pagi of Normandy to the North and East of the Seine, is laboriously and clearly elucidated in an anonymous work of the last century, Description Geographique et Historique de la Haute Normandie (Paris, 1740).
Many special Histories concerning Normandy are very serviceable. A successor of Dudo, though separated from that dignitary by many centuries, has supplied an ample Chronicle of the Vermandois. I allude to M. Louis Paul Collette, Dean of St. Quentin, who in his three quarto volumes, Memoires pour servir a l'Histoire Ecclesiastique, Civile, et Militaire de la Province du Vermandois, (Cambray, 1771,) has employed not merely the written authorities, but local traditions, such e.g. as the account of Mont-Herbert.
For the County of Ponthieu we have much assistance in the work of M. Louandre (Histoire d'Abbeville et du Comte de Ponthueu, Paris, 1844). Amongst other local historians, we have good histories of Evreux, City, County, and Diocese, by Le Brasseur, (Paris, 1722,) and of Laon, by Don Nicolas le Long, (Charente, 1783). But amongst all local historians, the Abbe de la Rue stands pre-eminent -- Essai Historique sur la ville de Caen, 1820. Besides much minute information concerning that most interesting city, we obtain from him many data relating to the alterations which the shores of Normandy have sustained.
The Forests of Normandy, equally important in connection with the constitutional History of Normandy as with her topography, are minutely described in the Etudes sur la Condition de la Classe Agricole et de l'Etat de l'Agriculture en Normandie au Moyen Age, by M. Delisle (Evreux, 1821), a work exhibiting much industry.
Amongst the numerous special biographies of individuals eminent in France and Normandy, two, not generally known, may be noticed, as bearing upon this work; and both relating to a personage whose merits and failings re-quire that which they never can now receive, a satisfactory elucidation, -- Gerbert of Aurillac. The character of Gerbert, in all its aspects, whether, as a political adventurer, or as a man of science, or Pontiff, is very ably elucidated by Dr. C. F. Hoek -- Gerbert oder Papst Sylvester II. und sein Jahrhundert (Vienna, 1837). Very much information concerning Gerbert is given in this work, but as usual the biographer ascribes over-much merit to his hero. Gerbert's letters, translated into French, with a very ample commentary, have been published in his own country by a compatriotic enthusiast, Louis Varse (Riom, 1847). Holding the station which Gerbert does in the history of mediaeval science, it is to be regretted that so little attention has been paid in this country to his unquestionable talent.
I have elsewhere (Vol. I, p. 723) noticed the many excellent works which the French Archaeologists have contributed for the elucidation of that branch of knowledge furnishing the most important aid to the historian, or rather being history itself in a most profitable form -- Genealogies. -- To those, before quoted (Vol. I, p. 725) I must add the valuable History and Records of the House of Gurney, which Mr. Daniel Gurney has compiled from original documents, mostly printed by him as vouchers for his text.
On a former occasion I omitted to call attention to the great assistance which every historical enquirer will receive from the Gallia Sacra, one of the many works, which, so far as unwearied diligence, judgment, and accuracy are concerned, put us to shame. Here the historical student or, enquirer will find every particular which he may require for the succession of the Prelates, and Heads of Houses of Religion throughout the ecclesiastical provinces of France, and put together in the most usable form.
For the archiepiscopal see of Rheims, we have, moreover, the excellent history of Marlot (Lisle, 1666). This work contains many original ducuments, which I have employed.
The Benedictine Houses of Normandy are copiously illustrated by Mabillon (Annales Benedictini). Whilst Mabillon's attention is never diverted from the main object of his work, this most diligent and conscientious writer furnishes numerous historical and biographical notices illustrating civil history. I am not aware that any particulars are known concerning Otto or Otho, Lothaire's son, except those given by Mabillon (Tome iv, p. 33), who adds an engraving of the miniature in Queen Emma's psalter.
For Normandy we have in addition to Gallia Sacra, the Neustria Pia (Rouen, 1663), in which will be found all the details which are necessarily excluded from a work concerning the whole kingdom; and also the Concilia Rotomagensis Provinciae (Rouen, 1717), a work which gives us the outline of Norman ecclesiastical history.
Monumental Archaeology, as such, is beyond the legitimate sphere of history, but it is always useful to refresh the imagination by visible objects. The student would do well to turn over Cottman's Views in Normandy, which, together with Mr. Dawson Turner's Letters from Normandy, 1820, include engravings of large numbers of antient buildings demolished within the last thirty years. Nearly two-thirds of the structures engraved in these works have been demolished. Amongst others, the Hall at Lislebonne, where the Conqueror assembled his barons previous to the embarkation at Saint Valery.
For the history of Flanders, the principal source which I have employed is the Chronicle of Saint Bertin, compiled by Johannes Iperius, the Abbot of the Monastery. It is professedly the chronicle of the House, but inasmuch as the Abbey was held in commendam by Arnoul and other Counts, the work becomes a chronicle of Flanders. It is Iperius who gives that remarkable statement of the death of Count Baldwin from the small-pox, calling the disease by its modern name. In the next place I have used Lesbroussart's edition of D'Oudegherst's Annales de Flandre (Chent, 1779) as to language. It is a pleasant specimen of the vieux Gaulois and his numerous chronological mistakes are corrected by his editor; and having requested a very competent authority to point out to me the best standard work on Flemish history, he recommended thus to me. Oudegherst carries his history down to Philippe-le-Bon. Furthermore, I have employed Gheldorf's translation of Warnkoenig's Histoire de la Flandre (Brussels, 1836), in which the original is enlarged and improved. Curious and interesting also is the anonymous Chronyke van Vlaendraen, printed at Bruges without a date, but printed, as may be collected from the preface, about the beginning of the last century. It is an illustrated work, and the illustrations are amusing, if not authentic.
For German history, I have as before, profited by availing myself of Luden's guidance: but in this volume I have been aided to a far greater extent, by working much in the wake of the Jahrbucher des Deutschen Reichs, now in course of publication, under the direction of Ranke. The plan of the work is singular; it is composed under Ranke's direction, by his pupils or disciples; each writing independently. The volumes or parts of volumes which I have consulted, are respectively composed by Koepke, (936, 951,) Doenniges, (951, 973,) Griesbrecht, (973, 983,) and Wilmans, (983, 1002.) They are accompanied by various dissertations, and give an accurate and specific reference to the sources -- mostly to the older editions which preceded the Scriptores Rerum Germanicarum of Pertz; also to some not included in that valuable collection, e.g., the Scriptores Rerun Brunsmicensium of Leibuitz.
The German Chroniclers concern themselves to no inconsiderable extent with the affairs of France and of Normandy, and much more so with Italy. -- At their head stands Widukind, or Wittikind, of Corbey, who affords us an ample and authentic history of the Saxon line, from its foundation to the death of Otho I. He is a writer of the highest importance. Honest, able, spirited -- Wittikind's account of the battle of the Lech, terminating with the salutation of Otho as "Imperator" after the victory, may be quoted as a magnificent poetical picture.
Thietmar, or Dietmar, of Merseburgh, whose work embraces the same period, abounds with anecdotes which we do not find elsewhere, at least, not so fully -- such, for example, as concern Liutgarda's persecutions, and the notice of her silver spindle.
From liutprand, whose name has been rendered familiar by Gibbon's notice of him, we have a very valuable history of the Othonian period, in which his Embassy holds so conspicuous a station; but, perhaps, the historical pride of the period consists of the compositions which I have termed the Othonian memoirs. To a Clerk of the Palace, probably a Clerk of the Chancery, we owe the very interesting Vita Mathildae Reginae written at the request of the canonized emperor, Henry the Second, Matilda's great grandson, and with whom the Saxon line closed. The line began with a Henry and ended with a Henry. Henry the Second was the son of Henry the Quarreller, the son of Henry the Porphyrogenitus, the son of Henry the Fowler, or Henry the First. The anonymous author is an able writer, displaying a thorough acquaintance with the best models, and a pleasant narrator. It is he who has presented us with that agreeable family picture, the account of the conversation between Matilda and Adelaide (when the latter tried to make up the match between her little Emma and some one of the young princes, who were playing about the room). One of the boys was Henry the Quarreller, who clambered up and begged a kiss of his grandmother; and this anecdote affords a clue to the manner in which the family traditions were communicated to the writer, as well as a general voucher for the accuracy of the narration.
The Gesta Othonis Imperatoris are commemorated in the elegant verses of Roswitha, whose imitations of Terence, however creditable to her talents, are as discreditable to her sex and her calling. The work seems to have proceeded slowly. Prefixed is an epistolary dedication to Gerberga. It exhibits all the authorial courtesy of modern times. This is followed, by a dedication in verse to the great Otho, and a third dedication to the second Otho. Otho's deeds in Italy are carefully recorded, but there is a passing touch of compassion for Liudolph.
Odilo, the canonized Abbot of Clugni, has given us the Epitaphium Adelheidae Imperatricis, a quaint though not unprecedented application of the term, epitaph. It follows the Epitaphium (in the popular sense) of Otho the great. The writer notices, with some bitterness, the inimical influence exercised by Theophania.
The last of these biographies possesses the same character of authenticity as the others. It is the Vita Saneti Brunonis Archiepiscopi, composed by a Clerk of Cologne, Ruotger, Bruno's peculiar friend. He was charged by Folkmar, Bruno's successor in the see, with the task of commemorating their common friend. The work is highly important, whether for Bruno's political history, or his personal character.
The principal Magyar chronicles are collected by Schwardtner, Sriptores Rerum Hungaricum Veteres ac Genuini (Vienna, 1746). But the only one whom I have had occasion to consult is the very singular history ascribed to the Notary or Chancellor of King Bela. He gives us all the traditions about the Hetumogors.
With respect to the subject of German chivalry and German heraldry, into which I have digressed, the account given of the Turnier-Buch is extracted from Panzer (Annalen der aelteren Deutscher literature, 1788), a most useful and consultable work, as far as it extends, but left imperfect by the author. Graesse (Vol. III p. 1, p. 153,) has furnished a very full and complete list of the works in which the Turnier-Buch is discussed.
The statutes ascribed to Henry the Fowler are printed by Goldastus in his Constitutiones Imperiales, (Vol. I, p. 211). That these statutes are unauthentic, in the strict sense of the term, there can be no doubt. At the same time there can be as little doubt but that the published constitutions overlay a reality, like the restoration of an antient church by a pupil of Batty Langley.
The influence of the German ethos in England, during the reigns of Edward the Third and Richard the Second, is clearly discernible. Possibly Richard, Earl of Cornwall, and King of the Romans, may have first introduced the feeling. It appears from the handwriting of some of this nominal Sovereign's charters, that he employed German clerks in his Kanzlei. The architecture of the choir of his church at Oppenheim, bears a strong affinity to the nave of York. And in York alone, of all the English churches now existing, have we examples of the double window tracery so often found in Germany.
It appears from the books and accounts of the royal wardrobe, amongst our Exchequer records, that Edward the Third had many Germans amongst his musicians; and German mottoes were embroidered on his robes. -- It is only a Cambro-Britain who can deny that Ich Dien is German. The Black Prince employed his motto, Hoch Muth, as a signature to his letters instead of his name, and both the German mottoes are upon his sepulchre.
Moreover, amongst the royal manuscripts in the British Museum, is a work upon Geomancy, which belonged to the third Edward's unfortunate successor, exhibiting the playful interlacement which converts the motto of the Prince of Wales into a token of conjugal love. -- The whole subject of German heraldry is full of interest, and as yet has not received sufficient examination. The heraldry of the Teutonised Sclavanian tribes is peculiarly singular. The very strange and queer Italian blazonry is for the most part German, and derived from Imperial concessions, in the same manner as most, if not all, the titles of the higher nobility. Count Litta's Famiglie nobili d'Itallia, a work which has but one defect -- its magnificence -- which puts it quite out of the reach of ordinary purchasers, shows this fact clearly.
With respect to the absence of any States-general in Normandy, during any period when Normandy was under her Norman or Anglo-Norman Dukes, we possess the strongest negative evidence. How the Channel Islands obtained their semi-Anglo-Saxon organisation is a perplexing problem. The examples given by Houard -- Dictionnaire de la Coutume de Normandie -- (Tome I, p. 170), as proving the existence of the States under the Dukes, are not sufficient. Such assemblies as the Convocation of the Prelates and Nobles at Lislebonne, are needed under the most absolute governments. Dom I. L. Le Noir, a successor of Montfaucon, and also working under the direction of the congregation of St. Maur, made very large collections of pieces justificatives illustrating Norman history. But the Revolution prevented the prosecution of the work, and his collections have been probably dispersed. At least the Abbe de la Rue thought so. The Abbe de la Rue kindly gave me Le Noir's curious book, La Normandie ancienne Pays d'Etat (Paris, 1790). In this work Dom Le Noir has fully established the position that all the examples quoted from historians by Howard, are insufficient; and that the earliest document, and that very obscure, which affords any approximation to the existence of the States, is the treaty, 1338-1339, between Philip of Valois on the one part, and fifty Nobles, "des plus distingues de Normandie;" on the other part, whereby the said Nobles "revetus des pouvoirs et procurations des prelats et gens d'eglise, des nobles, des citoyens habitans des villes, et de tout le commun peuple du pays et duche de Normandie, s'engagent a fournir, a leurs frais et depens, dans 1'espace de dix semaines, quatre mille hommes d'armes et vingt mille bommes de pied pour lui aider a faire, au nom et profit de Jean son fils, duc de Normandie, la conqueste du royaume d'Angleterre."
It does not appear that the usage of keeping any record in writing of any public proceedings, save and except of ecclesiastical synods, subsisted during the reigns of the three first Dukes. Nor is there any example, as far as I am aware, of any charter previous to the one granted by Richard-sans-Peur. This Charter, by which Richard confirmed Bretteville to the Abbey of Saint Denis, is the earliest and most remarkable document of its kind, affording more insight into the political position of Richard than can be obtained from any history ; and it is a singular circumstance that this one document brings before us some of the most important individuals of the age as living witnesses.
This Charter is contained in the Recueil des Historiens, (Vol. ix, p. 731), but, as far as I know, has never been quoted, probably in copsequence of its not being noticed in the table of contents.
The following is the testing clause:- Actum Britnevallis jussu domoi Ricardi ineliti Comitis, xv Cal. Aprilis, anno xiv, regnante Hlothario Rege, Indictione xi. (968).
Signum Hugonis Archiepiscopi. Signum Hugonis Francorum Ducis. Signum Ricardi Normannorum Principis. Signum Osmundi. Signum Rodulfi. Signum Aganomis. Signum Turistingi. Signum Ivonis. Signum Walteri Comitis. Signum Toraldi. Signum Alberedi. Signum Osberni. Signum Theobaldi Comitis. Signum Waleranni. -- Sir Francis Palgrave