Corpus of Electronic Texts Edition
The Flight of the Earls (Author: Tadhg Ó Cianáin)

section 65

They proceeded from there three leagues on the left side of the river. They then crossed it in boats. They went to Nancy, the Duke's chief city, a distance of two


leagues. Very beautiful and varied was the country through which they journeyed that day, with plenty of vines and wheat, fruitful forests, and many houses. About two leagues from the city, on a beautiful high hill, there is a very strong castle with a large number of guards. It is there the Duke's children are instructed and brought up in their youth. The Duke sent coaches and noblemen a distance from the Court to meet them. When they alighted the Duke's steward called to invite them to the great palace, but they excused themselves for that night because of their journey. After they had heard Mass on the next day the same man came to meet them with good coaches. They then went to the palace. They remained walking and passing the time in an extensive, excellent, beautiful gallery while the Duke was in the church hearing Mass. He came from the church afterwards. He himself was in becoming dress, with some of his noblemen discoursing with him, and his two sons after him. He had a very beautiful guard, and many pages on either side of him. When he came to his hall he sent great lords for them. the Irish. They went into his presence. He received them with joy and honour, and his children did likewise. They remained for a time discoursing and conversing with one another. Afterwards they sat down to dinner. They were six in number, the Duke and his two sons, Ó Néill, the Earl, and the Baron of Dungannon. There were many honourable noblemen waiting on them. He brought them afterwards to his private apartment. There they remained for a time. They then took their leave and retired to their lodgings. There was an Earl, who was head-steward of the Duke, accompanying them. He proclaimed under severe penalty, that no one should accept gold or silver of them while they should be in the city, but that all their expenses during that time should be borne by the Duke.