Modern education has not given us men who write better epitaphs or men who build better houses. It has given us men who are afraid to write epitaphs and leave it to the vicar. It has given us men who are afraid to build houses and leave it to the architect. — G. K. Chesterton

Our Island Story - H. E. Marshall




HENRY IV. OF BOLINGBROKE—THE STORY OF HOW PRINCE HAL WAS SENT TO PRISON

Prince Hal was clever and brave, but he was so wild and fond of fun that he was called 'Madcap Hal.' He spent a great deal of time with gay companions and often got into mischief.

One day a servant of Prince Hal, having done something wicked, was taken before the Lord Chief-Justice Gascoigne to be tried and punished. When Prince Hal heard about it he was very angry, and went at once to the court-house. He strode up to where his servant was standing, and turning to the officer beside him, 'Take off these fetters,' he said. 'Let my man go free. How dare you arrest my servant?'

'My lord Prince,' said Judge Gascoigne calmly, 'your servant has broken the law, and must be punished by the law. If you wish to save him, you must go to the King, your father, and beg mercy from him. He can grant it if he thinks fit. Now, I pray you leave the court, and allow me to deal as I think just with the prisoner.'

Prince Hal was very angry at being spoken to like this. He was so angry that he hardly knew what he was doing, and, springing forward, he struck the judge in the face.

The people in the court were dumb with astonishment and fear. What would happen next no one knew. The Prince was in such a passion that they were afraid he might kill the judge.

But Judge Gascoigne sat quite still and unmoved. 'Sir,' he said sternly to the Prince, 'remember that I am here in place of the King, your lord and father. In his name I charge you to give up your sword. For your contempt and disobedience I send you to prison. There you shall remain until the will of the King, your father, shall be known.'

Henry V of England
"For your contempt and disobedience I send you to prison," said Judge Gascoigne.


At these calm, grave words, the Prince was ashamed. All his anger vanished and, taking off his sword, he bowed humbly to the judge, and went quietly to prison.

As soon as the Prince had gone, some of his servants ran to tell the King what had happened. They expected him to be very angry with the judge. But, after hearing the story, the King sat silent for a few minutes. Then he said, 'I thank God that He has given me a judge who does not fear to do justice, and a son who can obey the law.'

Towards the end of his troubled reign, Henry IV. was often ill, and although very unwilling to do so, he was obliged to allow Prince Hal to help in ruling the kingdom. Once, while the King was ill, Prince Hal came into his room, and finding him lying very still and quiet thought that he was dead. The crown was beside the King's bed and the Prince lifted it, put it on his own head, and went away.

But the King was not dead, and when he awoke and found that the crown was gone, he was greatly alarmed. He called to his nobles, who were in a room near, 'Why have you left me alone? Some one has stolen the crown.'

The nobles came running to the King. 'The Prince was with you, my lord, while you slept,' they said; 'he must have taken the crown.'

'The Prince took it?' said the King. 'Go, bring him here.'

When he was told that the King was not dead, Prince Hal returned at once. With tears in his eyes he knelt beside his father's bed. 'I never thought to hear you speak again,' he said.

And the King replied sadly:—

'Thy wish was father, Henry, to that thought:

I stay too long by thee, I weary thee;

Dost thou so hunger for my empty chair,

That thou wilt needs invest thee with mine honours

Before thy hour is ripe? O foolish youth!

Thou seek'st the greatness that will overwhelm thee.'

'Oh, pardon me, my liege,' said Prince Hal, weeping; and the King pardoned and blessed him before he died.

'How I came by the crown, O God, forgive,

And grant it may with thee in true peace live.'



Contents

Front Matter
Review

Albion and Brutus
The Coming of the Romans
The Romans Come Again
Caligula Conquers Britain
The Story of Boadicea
The Last of the Romans
The Story of St. Alban
Vortigern and King Constans
Hengist and Horsa
Hengist's Treachery
The Giant's Dance
The Coming of Arthur
Founding of the Round Table
Gregory and the Children
King Alfred Learns to Read
Alfred and the Cowherd
More About Alfred the Great
Ethelred the Unready
Edmund Ironside
Canute and the Waves
Edward the Confessor
Harold Godwin
The Battle of Stamford Bridge
The Battle of Hastings
Hereward the Wake
Death of the King
The Story of William the Red
The Story of the "White Ship"
The Story of King Stephen
Henry II—Gilbert and Rohesia
Thomas a Becket
The Conquest of Ireland
Richard Coeur de Lion
How Blondel Found the King
The Story of Prince Arthur
The Great Charter
Henry III and Hubert de Burgh
Simon de Montfort
The Poisoned Dagger
The War of Chalons
The Lawgiver
The Hammer of the Scots
King Robert the Bruce
The Battle of Bannockburn
The Battle of Sluys
The Battle of Crecy
The Siege of Calais
The Battle of Poitiers
Wat Tyler's Rebellion
How Richard Lost His Throne
The Battle of Shrewsbury
Prince Hal Sent to Prison
The Battle of Agincourt
The Maid of Orleans
Red Rose and White
Margaret and the Robbers
The Story of the Kingmaker
A King Who Wasn't Crowned
Two Princes in the Tower
The Make-Believe Prince
Another Make-Believe Prince
The Field of the Cloth of Gold
Defender of the Faith
The Six Wives of Henry VIII
The Story of a Boy King
The Story of Lady Jane Grey
Elizabeth a Prisoner
A Candle Lit in England
Elizabeth Becomes Queen
A Most Unhappy Queen
Saved from the Spaniards
Sir Walter Raleigh
The Queen's Favourite
The Story of Guy Fawkes
The Story of the Mayflower
A Blow for Freedom
King and Parliament Quarrel
The King Brought to Death
The Adventures of a Prince
The Lord Protector
How Death Plagued London
How London was Burned
The Fiery Cross
The Story of King Monmouth
The Story of the Seven Bishops
William the Deliverer
William III and Mary II
A Sad Day in a Highland Glen
How the Union Jack was Made
Earl of Mar's Hunting Party
Bonnie Prince Charlie
Flora MacDonald
The Black Hole of Calcutta
How Canada Was Won
How America Was Lost
A Story of a Spinning Wheel
Every Man Will Do His Duty
The Battle of Waterloo
The First Gentleman in Europe
Two Peaceful Victories
The Girl Queen
When Bread was Dear
Victorian Age: Peace
Victorian Age: War
The Land of Snow
The Siege of Delhi
The Pipes at Lucknow
Under the Southern Cross
From Cannibal to Christian
Boer and Briton
List of Kings