This Day in History: 1321-02-08

On 8th February 1321, Edward II wrote to Thomas of Lancaster, lord of Pontefract, recounting the crimes which the rebels had committed and warning him not to receive the Marchers, who had retired from Gloucester and publicly declared that they were about to join Lancaster and that he would help them. Lancaster’s reply to the king’s demand, preserved by the Meaux chronicler, probably arrived within the next few days. He answered arrogantly that he had drawn no rebels to himself nor was he accustomed to nourish such men, but if he knew where they could be found he would kill them or expel them from the kingdom. Plainly, neither party contemplated any sort of peaceful settlement, and between 7th and 18th February writs were issued by Edward for the assembly of a large army at Coventry on 28th February.