The Great Revolt of 1381

The Great Revolt of 1381

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The Great Revolt of 1381

The Great Revolt of 1381

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Excerpt

If André Réville had survived to complete his projected history of the Great Revolt of 1381, this book of mine would not have been written. But when he had transcribed at the Record Office all the documents that he could find bearing on the rebellion, and had written three chapters dealing with the troubles in Norfolk, Suffolk, and Hertfordshire, he was cut off by disease at the early age of twenty-seven. All his transcripts of documents, together with the fragment relating to the three shires above named, were published by the Société de l'École des Chartes in 1898, with an excellent preface by M. Petit-Dutaillis. The book is now out of print and almost unattainable. It is with the aid of Réville's transcripts—a vast collection of records of trials, inquests, petitions, and Escheators' rolls—that I have endeavoured to rewrite the whole history of the Rebellion. The existing narratives of it, with few exceptions, have been written with the Chroniclers alone, not the official documents as their basis: I must except of course Mr.George Trevelyan's brilliant sketch of the troubles in his England in the Age of Wycliffe and Mr.Powell's Rising of 1381 in East Anglia, the fruit of much hard work at the Record Office. By an unfortunate coincidence André Réville had completed his East Anglian section, and that section only, at the moment of his lamented and premature death, so that the detailed story of the revolt in Norfolk and Suffolk has been told twice from the official sources, and that of the rest of England not at all.

Réville's collection, together with the smaller volumes of documents published by Messrs. Powell and Trevelyan in 1896 . . .

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