Tales from Froissart

edited by Steve Muhlberger, Nipissing University

The death of the lord de Langurant

The lord de Langurant was a steadfast supporter of the French cause, much hated by the other side.

Book II, ch. 28. The lord de Langurant, being a knight eager for battle, was riding out one day attended by about forty lances: he advanced near to an English garrison called Cadillac, which belonged to the captal de Buch and his brothers. He posted his men in ambush in a wood, telling them that he would ride alone to the castle to see if any one would sally forth against him. His men obeyed: when, riding to the barriers of Cadillac, he spoke to the guards, asking, "Where is Bernard Courant, your captain? Tell him tha the lord de Langurant wishes to tilt with him; and, since he is so valiant a man at arms, he will not refuse my request for the love of his lady. If he should not consent, it will turn to his shame, and I will publish everywhere that he had refused to break a lance with me thorugh cowardice."

One of the valets of Bernard, at that time at the barriers, replied, "Lord de Langurant, I have perfectly heard what you have said: I will go and inform my master; for cowardice shall never be a reproach to him, if you will be so good as to wait."

"By my faith," answered the lord de Langurant, "that I will." The valet went to his master, whom he found in his chamber, and told him what you have heard.

When Bernard heard this, his heart swelled within him, and he fiercely exclaimed, "Give me my arms, and saddle my steed, for he shall never return with a refusal." His orders were promptly obeyed: being armed, he mounted on horseback with his lance and buckler, and, having the gates and barriers thrown open, advanced into the plain.

The lord de Langurant was much pleased when he saw him: lowering his spear, he placed himself in the position of a good knight, as did his squire. They were both well mounted; and spurring their horses, their lances struck with such force on their shields as shivered them to pieces. At the second pass, Bernard Courant gave such a deadly blow on the shoulder of the lord de Langurant as to drive him out of his saddle, and fell him to the ground. When Bernard saw him fall, he was rejoiced, and turning his horse upon him, as the lord de Langurant was raising himself up, Bernard, who had great strength, caught him with both hand by the helmet, tore it off his head, and flung it under his horse.

The troops of the lord de Langurant who were in ambush, noticing all this, began to advance to rescue their lord. Bernard Courant percieved them, and, drawing his dagger, said to the lord de Langurant, "Surrender yourself my prisoner, lord de Langurant, resuced or not, or you are a dead man."

The lord de Langurant, who trused to his people for assistance, was shy, and made no answer. When Bernard saw that he would not make any reply, he was inflamed with passion, and fearing lest he might suffer from delay, struck him with his dagger on the head, which was bare, and drove it into him: then, drawing it back, he put spurs to his horse, galloped within the barriers, where he dismounted, and put himself in a posture of defence, if there should be a necessity for it.

The lord de Langurant's people, on coming ot him, found him mortally wounded: they were much enraged at it, and having bandaged his wound as well as they could, carried him back to his castle, where he, on the morrow, expired. Such was the end of the lord de Langurant in Gascony.

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