The Story of the Chevalier Bayard

The Story of the Chevalier Bayard: from the French of the Loyal Servant, M. de Berville and others

by Edith Walford

Bayard was the "Galahad" of France, with the difference that Bayard was a historical person.

At the age of thirteen he declared to his father that

holding so glorious and illustrious a name — a name unsullied and untarnished by numerous ancestors who had borne it, and who had glorified it by incomparable feats of arms — he begged leave to try and imitate them.

He was presented as a page to the Duke of Savoy and from the outset attracted notice for his courage and horsemanship. He became a man-at-arms at the age of seventeen and within a year he distinguished himself in his first experience of war. His skills and reputation grew until his presence was regarded by both the French and their adversaries as "worth 2000 soldiers".

Always first in the attack, and last to retreat, generous and honourable, Bayard became known as Le chevalier sans peur et sans reproche (Spotless and Fearless). He was so highly regarded that François I, when he was King, asked Bayard to knight him.

This is a charming biography that shows the best of the age of chivalry.

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