"My lord," said the count of Foix
, "as we are all gathered here, we shall go into battle against your enemies."
They followed this advice, arming themselves immediately and organising their men, of whom there were around twelve hundred with helmets and six thousand foot soldiers. The count of Foix
led the vanguard and charged the king of Spain and his men in their quarters. There followed a long and furious battle and more than ten thousand Spaniards
were killed. The count of Foix
captured the son and brother of the king of Spain and sent them before his lord Sir Gaston de Béarn
who commanded the rearguard. The Spanish
were so thoroughly routed there that the count of Foix
pursued them as far as the port of Santander
. The king of Spain took refuge in the abbey, donning a monk's habit; otherwise he would have been captured. Those who were able took to their vessels to save themselves, and set out to sea.'
'Then the count of Foix
returned and came before my lord Gaston de Béarn
who received him joyfully. He was right to do so for he had protected his honour and the country of Béarn
which would otherwise have been lost. The battle and defeat of the Spanish
and the capture by the count of Foix of the king of Spain's son and brother led to peace with the lord of Béarn
on the terms which he dictated.'
'On his return to Orthez
, Sir Gaston de Béarn
, in front of all the barons of Foix
who were present, took his son the count of Foix
"Dear son, you are my good and loyal son, and you have secured for all time my honour and the honour of my country. The count of Armagnac
, who has my eldest daughter
, excused himself in my time of great need and did not come to the defence of the inheritance in which he had a share.
I therefore declare him forfeit of the share of it he would have expected from my daughter
, his wife. I invest you with the whole of the territory of Béarn
as your inheritance upon my death, you and all your heirs in perpetuity thereafter. I request and command all of my subjects to agree with me and seal this inheritance which I now bestow on you, fair son of Foix
They all responded, "My lord, we will gladly do this."'
'And so, just as I am telling you, the former counts of Foix became the lords of Béarn
bearing the arms, the battle cry, the name and the profit thereof. However, it has not stopped the Armagnacs
claiming rights they say they are entitled to. This, as you see, is the cause of the quarrel and war between Armagnac
'By my faith,' I exclaimed, then, to the knight
, 'you have expounded it all very well. I have never heard tell of it before, but now that I have, I shall commit it to perpetual memory, if God grants me to return to my country. But there is one more thing I would gladly ask, if I might be so bold: What caused the death of the son
of the count of Foix
considered for a moment then said, 'It is too woeful a matter and I do not wish to speak of it. When you arrive in Orthez
you are sure to find someone who will tell you if you ask.'
I let matters be for the moment, and so we rode on and came to Morlaàs
SHF 3-19 sync
Third Book, Chapter 13 [1388-(1373)-(1380)]
Of the immense wealth and prosperity of the count of Foix, and of the wretched manner of the death of Gaston, the son of the count of Foix.
We left the next day and reached Mongerbiel Bougarber
in time for dinner, then mounted again, stopping for refreshment in Arthez
and arriving at Orthez
at sundown. The knight
went to his own house and I found lodging at the Inn of the Moon
kept by one of the count
's squires named Arnauton du Pin
, who made me very welcome because I was French-speaking. pb 219 v