Chap. II. Progress of Chivalry in Great Britain, from the Reign of Richard II. to that of Henry VIII
England was menaced with invasion by Complaint. Charles VI. of France; but the project died ~~i~:~rrcn-
d 1 . ffi 1 state of away, an not Hng gave greater 0 ence to t Ie Richard's people than the want of spirit in the court, in court. not revenging itself for the insult. A comparison was immediately instituted between the present and the preceding reign. \Vhere were those great enterprises, it was asked, which distinguished the days of King Edward III. ? where could be found the valiant men who had fought with the Prince, his son? In those days England was feared, and was reputed as possessing the flower of Christian chivalry; but now no man speaks of her, now there are no wars but such as are made on poor men's purses, and thereto everyone is inclined. *
Inlluenceof E I' h " A 1" f' d chivalr~ on ng IS constItutlOn. n app lcatlOn or re ress the national f" 1 I d 1 f' character. 0 gnevances a ways met t Ie . emanc 0 sup-
plies, and public liberty benefitted by the costly ambition of the crown. The wars did not spring from chivalry, and we cannot, therefore, ascribe to that bright source any general political advantages which resulted £i'om them: but chivalry gave the tone to the manner in which they were waged; hers were all the humanities of the contest; hers was, at least, half the distinction (for we must remember the bow was as formidable as the lance) of cstabl ishing the glory of the country; of giving her that proud character for martial prowess, which has outlived her brief and feeble tenure of the territorial consequences of victory.