He could be stately with Spaniards, familiar with Flemings witty with Italians. He could strike down a bull in the ring like a matador at Madrid, or win the prize in the tourney like a knight of old; he could ride at the ring with the Flemish nobles, hit the popinjay with his crossbow among Antwerp artisans, or drink beer and exchange rude jests with the boors of Brabant.
According to the stipulations of the Queen of England, and the views of the whole popular party, the Prince remained Ruward of Brabant, notwithstanding the appointment of a nominal Governor-General, by whom his own duties were to be superseded.
The unseen hand of fate gave to the discharged arrow a higher flight, and quite a different direction from that which it first received from the bowstring. In the womb of happy Brabant that liberty had its birth which, torn from its mother in its earliest infancy, was to gladden the so despised Holland.
At last, on the 7th of October, 1337, he proclaimed himself King of France, as his lawful inheritance, designating as representatives and supporters of his right the Duke of Brabant, the Marquis of Juliers, the Count of Haiiiault, and William de Bohun, Earl of Northampton. The enterprise had no foundation in right, and seemed to have few chances of success.
"I never heard anything like that said about the war. The reason for it was perfectly plain. We had to fight or acknowledge France to be the dictator of Europe. Still, politics have nothing to do with my story. General Trelawny and his forces were in Brabant, and were under orders to join the Duke of Marlborough's army.
There was a comfortable fragrance of new-baked bread, mingling with the spicy scent of grass-pinks, in that house: and the hostess who gave us luncheon a young married woman had a mild, sweet face, strongly resembling that of St. Geneviève of Brabant, as pictured in a coloured lithograph on the wall. St.
The gay capital of Brabant of that province which rejoiced in the liberal constitution known by the cheerful title of the "joyful entrance," was worthy to be the scene of the imposing show. Brussels had been a city for more than five centuries, and, at that day, numbered about one hundred thousand inhabitants. Its walls, six miles in circumference, were already two hundred years old.
Besides, the adjacent towns of Brussels, Malines, Ghent, Dendermonde, and others, were all at this time in the hands of the league, and could aid the place from the land side also. To blockade, therefore, the town by land, and to cut off its communication with Flanders and Brabant, required two different armies, one on each bank of the river.
The remonstrance offered by the three estates of Brabant against the scheme had not influenced Philip. He had replied in a peremptory tone.
In the year 1446, on the Feast of the Annunciation of the Blessed Virgin Mary, two Clerks were invested, namely, Brother James Spaen, from Geldria, and Brother Henry, son of Paul of Mechlin in Brabant; the former of these attended the school at Deventer, and had a brother who was a Religious at Northorn: the latter attended the school at Zwolle.