King “during pleasure”

On this day 750 years ago the mayor of London, Thomas Fitz-Thomas, led the aldermen of that city to St. Paul’s to renew fealty to the king. Nothing untoward there, for a new political era had dawned, but then Fitz-Thomas did something that, in the words of the chronicler, was “wondrous and unheard of in that age”: he qualified his oath to Henry. “My lord, so long as unto us you will be a good lord and King, we will be faithful and duteous unto you.” Be a good king and you shall be king. Otherwise… Fitz-Thomas paid dearly after Evesham for his choice words. Despite giving him a safe conduct to parley the surrender of London, Edward had him imprisoned for the next three years.

The medieval St. Paul's. Let's take this town apart.
                                                                          The medieval St. Paul’s.

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