At this time and season, William earl of Hainault was laying siege to the town of Utrecht, and had been there for a long time, in order to recover some rights which he claimed as belonging to him. He pressed the siege so closely by his vigorous assaults, that he brought it back to its duty, and obtained every thing he wished for. Soon afterwards, in the same year, about the feast of St. Remy (1st of October), the earl collected a large body of men at arms, knights, and squires, from Hainault, Flanders, Brabant, Holland, Gueldres, and Juliers; and, embarking them on board a considerable fleet at Dordrecht, made sail for Friezland; for the earl considered himself as lord thereof. If the Friezlanders had been people to listen to the legality and reasonableness of the claim, the earl was entitled to it: but, as they were obstinate, he exerted himself to obtain it by force, and was slain, as well as a great many other knights and squire. God have mercy on their souls!
Sir John of Hainault did not accompany his nephew, but went to another part. On hearing of his nephew’s death, he wanted to combat the Friezlanders like one out of his senses: when his servants found the state he was in, they took him and carried him on board a vessel, whether he would or no. Sir Robert de Glewes, who was his body squire, was most active in saving him. They returned in small numbers, and in disorder, to Gertruydenberg in Holland, where the lady Jane his niece, the wife of the above-mentioned earl, was waiting for him. She was the eldest daughter of the duke of Brabant, and from that moment withdrew to the territory of Binch1, which was her dower. The county of Hainault remained vacant some time, and was governed by sir John of Hainault, until the lady Margaret, mother to earl Albert, came thither, and took possession of the heritage; to whom all the lords did homage and fealty. This lady Margaret, countess of Hainault, was married to the lord Lewis of Bavaria, emperor of Rome and king of Germany.