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From: "Stewart, Peter" <>
Subject: RE: RSVP: The 1317 Marriage Contract, Joan Gaveston - John Multon
Date: Thu, 1 Aug 2002 15:12:16 +1000


> -----Original Message-----
> From: [mailto:]
> Sent: Thursday, 1 August 2002 13:27
> To:
> Subject: Re: RSVP: The 1317 Marriage Contract, Joan Gaveston - John
> Multon
>
>
> On 30 Jul 2002 00:36:28 GMT, (Reedpcgen) wrote:
>
> < snip >
> >
> >It is also interesting to note that the terms of the
> contract stipulated that
> >Joan should reside with Multon. This was generally an
> effort to help the
> >proceedings stick (become legal fact).
>
> The enrolment of deed witnessing the marriage agreement between the
> king and Sir Thomas de Multon, Cal. of Close Rolls, 1313-1318, 20 May
> 1317, pg. 468 states : "....... [Sir Thomas] "ought to find his son
> and Joan and their children honourable maintenance at such time as it
> shall please the king or other friends of Joan's that she shall stay
> with Thomas".
>
> Note: the word for "friends". It should be translated as "kinsmen",
> from the Latin word, "amicus" -- "Dictionary of Medieval Latin from
> British Sources", the medieval Latin dictionary you abstracted and
> posted on the newsgroup.
>
> Thus, this was not "an effort to help the proceedings stick", but to
> provide for Joan after the marriage when the king and Joan's relatives
> decided they shall get married.
>
> Note also that this arrangement had absolutely no connection or
> implication to a canonical date before which marriage was
> inappropriate or unacceptable.
>
> >If, after betrothal, the children
> >eventually engaged in coitus, that was held to
> perfect/complete the marriage.
> >However, Joan was put in Amesbury for 'education'
> (safekeeping to preserve her
> >virginity, aside from the tutoring in grace and knowledge),
> and she died at
> >Amesbury.
>
> The Plantagenets were concerned with more than 'education' (or
> safekeeping) as you suggest. Mr. J C Parsons, in his book "Medieval
> Queenship", in the section entitled "Mothers, Daughters, Marriage ,
> Power: some Plantagenet Evidence" states quite clearly that the
> Plantagenets 'would cultivate relationships with them and train them
> for their future roles". As Joan was Edward's ward, and future wife
> of a lord, she would be better prepared for her future role by being
> at court than stuck far away in Amesbury.
>
> Also, Mr Parsons states that the Plantagenets were keenly attentive to
> the welfare of their young, and gives several examples of where the
> members of the royal family intervened to ensure the health and safety
> of their charges, so it is strange that Joan would die of illness,
> again isolated from court in Amesbury,
>
> I know that this is but a minor point, but given the political
> importance of this marriage contract to Edward, I can't logically
> explain her remote death stuck in a nunnery.

This is one of the oddest - not to say weakest - lines of argument advanced
so far. Nunneries were quite usual places for well-nurtured girls to await
the pleasures of marriage, and even the most doting parent can't invariably
prevent sudden illness and death today, much less in the medieval period:
teenage girls die, for instance, in even the best convent schools or the
nearest hospital from meningococcal disease. I'm quite sure John Carmi
Parsons couldn't have expected to have his name drawn into any context so
devoid of common sense.

Peter Stewart


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