Tony Grist (poliphilo) wrote,
Tony Grist
poliphilo

Another Knight

Edward le Despenser was the third son of the notorious Hugh Le Despenser- the charming rogue who inserted himself into the affections of Edward II, maintained himself- when in exile (a common fate of medieval favourites)- by turning pirate, and died on the scaffold (aged 40)- hung, drawn and quartered at the instigation of barons who found him rather less charming than the king did. Edward was similarly charming but something of a paragon, beloved by the ladies and a friend and patron of the chronicler Jean Froissart- who did as much as anyone to promote the ideals of medieval chivalry. He served in the wars of Edward III, fought in the famous victory at Poitiers and achieved an honourable death (aged 39) at the battle of Morlaix. His life-sized statue- sheltered by a gothic pavilion- is kneeling on the roof of his chantry chapel in Tewkesbury Abbey, looking towards the high altar. It is- so far as I know- the only such monument to survive.



Here he is again, out of his armour, being presented to the Holy Trinity by his own especial angel in a painting above the altar of the chantry chapel.



And here is his wife, Anne Ferrers of Groby.



The whole painting- like his statue, a rare survival- looks like this.

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