August 3, 1347
After the Battle of Crécy, the English King Edward III laid siege to the French port city of Calais. In exchange for lifting the siege, he demanded that six prominent citizens – burghers – surrender themselves at the gate, with nooses around their necks, carrying the keys to the gate and the castle. This picture was painted by Benjamin West in 1789 for King George II. It is in the Queen’s private collection.

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