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M.Besant E.Walter
Jerusalem, the city of Herod and Saladin

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M.Besant E.Walter
Jerusalem, the city of Herod and Saladin
page 234



a splendid library. It had been collected in the course of many peaceful years by the family of Ibn-Ammar, who were the hereditary princes, under the Caliph of Cairo, of the place. It consisted of a hundred thousand volumes, and a wretched priest blundering into the place, and finding this enormous mass of books written in " execrable," because unknown characters, called in the assistance of soldiers as ignorant as himself, and destroyed them all. The Tripolitans had, many years before, placed themselves under the protection of the Egyptian Caliph. They looked now for his help. In the midst of the siege a ship managed to put in with a message from the sovereign. He promised them no assistance, and encouraged them to no resistance. Only he recollected that there was in the city a beautiful female slave whom he desired to be sent to him, and asked for some wood of the apricot tree to make him lutes. After this, the people capitulated. The next place to fall was Beyrout, and through the same assistance. But in this case the place was carried by assault, and a terrible carnage ensued, stayed only by the order of the king. And after the victory and the conquest of Sarepta, the Genoese retired, carrying with them very many of Baldwin's best auxiliaries, and left him with his usually small force, barely enough for purposes of defence. But fortune favoured him again. The fame of the Crusades had taken a long time to travel northwards, but in time it had. reached to Norway and kindled the enthusiasm even of the Scandinavians. Hardly had the Genoese left the shores of Palestine, when Sigard, son or brother of King Magnus of Norway, arrived at Jaffa with ten thousand Norwegians, among whom were a large number of English. He was a young man, says Foulcher, of singular beauty, and was welcomed by Baldwin with all the charm of manner which made him the friend of all whom he desired to please. The sturdy


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