24: Terrible News

After two long years, terrible news reached England that King Richard’s Crusade had failed and that Richard himself was imprisoned in Germany. There was a ransom of one hundred and fifty thousand marks for the lion-hearted King of England.

In the Tower of London, Queen Eleanor and Lady Marian waited anxiously for news from the Archbishop of Canterbury, who had arrived travel stained and weary.

“I pray you bring good news,” said Queen Eleanor.
“We are thirty thousand marks nearer our goal,” replied the Archbishop. “The monasteries have melted up their plate, hearing that their king stood in need of ransom.”
“God bless them,” said the Queen. “What else?”
“London and the southern counties have given their all. So have the barons of the north. Yet one fourth of the ransom is still to be raised.”

The Archbishop paused and shook his head.
“Your own son, Prince John, has refused to contribute one stiver on behalf of King Richard.”
Queen Eleanor angrily sprang to her feet.
“He shall not hold back in the face of the king’s necessity. Tonight we leave for Nottingham!”

Queen Eleanor’s arrival in Nottingham was an unpleasant surprise for Prince John. He stood uneasy by the great stone fireplace in the keep of Nottingham Castle and embarrassingly faced his mother.

“Now that I know my brother’s plight,” he said with a sly smile, “upon the morrow, I’ll order a public donation in Nottingham Square. Even though I be shamed if the poor out give me.”

To read previous chapters please click on Story.


Clement of the Glen said...

Story from the film
Walt Disney's Story of Robin Hood

Neil said...

I think the picture may be the wrong way round however it is still a wonderful example of Peter Ellenshaws fabulous unrivalled matte painting. Only a very small part of this scene is not painted in i.e. the horses moving towards the gate. Great shot though. There is a wonderful before and after photograph in Peter Ellenshaws book 'Ellenshaw Under Glass' of this very scene.

Clement of the Glen said...

Yes you are right Neil, the image was flipped for the Simon and Schuster book.I decided to leave it as it was.

It is a stunning Matte picture of the Tower of London,with storm clouds brewing!

Is there any chance you could send me the 'before and after pic' to show on the website?