All knights whether bachelors or bannerets were escorted by their squires.
In Scotland, even as late as the reign of James VI., lords of parliament were always created bannerets as well as barons at their investiture, " part of the ceremony consisting in the display of a banner, and such ` barones majores ' were thereby entitled to the privilege of having one borne by a retainer before them to the field of a quadrilateral form."
8 In Scotland, too, lords of parliament and bannerets were also called bannerents, banrents or baronets, and in England banneret was often corrupted to baronet.
On the Continent, however, there are several recorded examples of bannerets who had an hereditary claim to that honour and its attendant privileges on the ground of the nature of their feudal tenure.'
And generally, at any rate to commence with, it seems probable that bannerets were in every country merely the more important class of feudatories, the " ricos hombres " in contrast to the knights bachelors, who in France in the time of St Louis were known as " pauvres hommes."
But it is clear that from a comparatively early period bannerets whose claims were founded on personal distinction rather than on feudal tenure gradually came to the front, and much the same process of substitution appears to have gone on in their case as that which we have marked in the case of simple knights.
Sir Alan Plokenet, Sir Ralph Daubeney and Sir Philip Daubeney are entered as bannerets on the roll of the garrison of Caermarthen Castle in 1282, and the roll of Carlaverock records the names and arms of eighty-five bannerets who accompanied Edward I.
What the exact contingent was which bannerets were expected to supply to the royal host is doubtful.'
And afterwards bannerets appear as the commanders of a military force raised by themselves and marshalled under their banners: their status and their relations both to the crown and to their followers were mainly the consequences of voluntary contract not of feudal tenure.
Sir Thomas Smith, writing towards the end of the 16th century, says, after noticing the conditions to be observed in the creation of bannerets, " but this order is almost grown out of use in England "; 7 and, during the controversy which arose between the new order of 1 See " Project concerninge the conferinge of the title of vidom," wherein it is said that " the title of vidom (vicedominus) was an ancient title used in this kingdom of England both before and since the Norman Conquest " (State Papers, James I.
Baronets and the crown early in the 17th century respecting their precedence, it was alleged without contradiction in an argument on behalf of the baronets before the privy council that " there are not bannerets now in being, peradventure never shall be."
8 Sir Ralph Fane, Sir Francis Bryan and Sir Ralph Sadler were created bannerets by the Lord Protector Somerset after the battle of Pinkie in 1547, and the better opinion is that this was the last occasion on which the dignity was conferred.
Had created several naval officers bannerets towards the end of the last century, because he knighted them on board ship under the royal standard displayed.
One earl, forty-two barons and bannerets, two hundred knights, seven hundred esquires and probably 10,000 foot were killed in the battle and the pursuit.
One earl, twenty-two barons and bannerets and sixty-eight knights fell into the hands of the victors, whose total loss of 4000 men included, it is said, only two knights.
Ultimately bannerets obtained a place in the feudal hierarchy between barons and knights bachelors, which has given rise to the idea that they are the origin of King James I.'s order of baronets.
The creation of bannerets is traceable, according to Selden, to the time of Edward I.
"Under these bannerets," he adds, "divers knights bachelors and esquires usually served; and according to the number of them, the bannerets received wages."