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John
John
428

France (August to November), receiving 5,334l. 6s. 8d. to maintain his state. On 4 Nov. 1415 he presided over the parliament which, on the announcement of the victory of Agincourt, granted liberal supplies. In May 1416 he met Sigismund, king of the Romans, at Rochester, escorted him to London, and sat on his left hand at a feast given at Windsor on St. George's day in his honour, the king sitting on Sigismund's right. On 22 July the king placed under the duke's command an expedition destined for the relief of Harfleur, which the French had closely invested. The fleet sailed to the mouth of the Seine on 14 Aug., and the next day joined battle with the French fleet, which was superior in number, and included some large Genoese caracks. The fight began about 9 A.m. and lasted five or six hours. The crews fought hand to hand with much fierceness, and though the caracks were higher than any of the English ships, three of them were taken and another large French ship was sunk, the rest of the fleet escaping into the harbour of Honfleur with the loss of fifteen hundred men, while the English did not lose more than a hundred. Bedford landed stores at Harfleur, and returned to England with his prizes.

On 25 July 1417 he was again appointed lieutenant of the kingdom during Henry's absence in France, and the Scots, taking advantage of what they deemed the unprotected state of the country, laid siege to Roxburgh [see Douglas, Archibald, fifth Earl] and to Berwick. Bedford at once marched northward with a force of six thousand men, met the Duke of Exeter [see Beaufort, Sir Thomas], who was raising forces in Yorkshire for the French war, and was joined by the Earls of Northumberland and Westmoreland, and the Archbishop of York [see Bowet, Henry]. The Scots retreated at his approach, and their abortive attempt was called in derision the 'Foul raid' (Fordun, P. 1186; Hardyng, p. 380; Walsingham, ii. 325). After reinforcing Sir Robert Umfraville, governor of Berwick, Bedford returned to London. On 16 Nov. he presided over a parliament, and caused Sir John Oldcastle [q. v.], the lollard leader, to be arraigned before the lords as an outlaw for treason and an excommunicated heretic. He offered to save Oldcastle's life if he would recant and submit, but, finding him resolute, sanctioned the sentence of the lords, and was present at his execution (Rolls of Parliament, iv. 108). He obtained supplies from parliament, and also a grant from convocation. Early in 1418 the council received a request for help from Jacqueline of Bavaria, daughter and heiress of William IV, count of Hainault, Holland, and Zealand (d. 1417), and widow of the dauphin John, against her uncle, John the Pitiless, bishop-elect of Liege, who was invading her lands, and had received investiture from Sigismund. A reply was sent on 3 March 1418 proposing a marriage between Bedford and the countess, but the proposal came to nothing (Ordinances, ii. 241; Fœdera, ix. 566; L'Art de Verifier, xiii. 370,451). Bedford appears to have had much to do to settle the claims of Flemish, Breton, and Genoese merchants, who declared that their ships had been seized unjustly by the English. In March 1419 Joanna II, queen of Naples, offered to adopt Bedford and make him her heir, subject to the approval of Pope Martin V, and her offer was seriously considered by the privy council; it was renewed the following spring, and the queen, who was then threatened by the grand constable, Sforza Attendolo, and Louis of Anjou, sent an ambassador to England to treat with the duke; but nothing came of the scheme, and a few months later she adopted Alfonso of Arragon (Fœdera, ix. 705, 865). Negotiations were also opened in 1419 for Bedford's marriage to the daughter and heiress of Frederic, burggrave of Nuremberg, to the daughter and heiress of Charles, duke of Lorraine, Isabel, afterwards wife of Renfe of Anjou, and to some kinswoman of Sigismund (ib. pp. 710, 711). Having held another parliament in October 1419, and obtained grants from it and from the clergy, he resigned his office as lieutenant at the end of December, and sailed to join the king with eight hundred men-at-arms and two thousand archers. After the surrender of Melun on 18 Nov. 1420 he accompanied Henry to Paris, and on 23 Dec. was present at the meeting of the parlement held for the trial of the murderers of John, duke of Burgundy. On 6 Jan. 1421 he left Paris with the king, and, after spending some weeks at Rouen, arrived in England in February. He was again, on 10 June, appointed lieutenant of the kingdom during the king's absence, and in December held a parliament, in which supplies were granted. He was one of the godfathers of the Prince of Wales (Henry VI), and in May 1422 escorted the queen to join her husband in Normandy. From Paris Henry sent him to receive the surrender of Compiegne on 18 June, and he rejoined the king at Senlis. Henry, who had promised Philip, duke of Burgundy, to march to the relief of Cosne, fell ill, and appointed Bedford to command his army. Bedford assembled his troop.s at Vezclay, joined the Burgundians at Avallon, and marched with Philip