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Realising you’ve just killed the King of France. What’s next?

June 29, 2015

456th Anniversary of the most unfortunate joust ever.



Today in 1559, Henri II of France was enjoying the stupidly dangerous sport of jousting.  In a bout with one Gabriel de Montgomery, a lance splinter penetrated the royal eye and entered the brain resulting in death a few days later.

I wonder how Gabriel de Montgomery felt over the course of those few days.  Henri declared Gabriel innocent and/or forgiven before he died (which was nice).   However, the events of June 30th proved impossible to live down.  Imagine being Gabriel de Montgomery.   “I know you – you have estates in Normandy – you have an impressive military record.  And wait – I know something else about you – I’ll remember it in a minute…”  I’d say Gabriel had to give up jousting.  At the very least.

It would be reasonable to assume that Gabriel de Montgomery retired to some rustic backwater and never troubled historians again, devoting…

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