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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 250



Christian kingdom'. We cannot, therefore, linger over the details of this siege, of the greatest importance to the safety of the Christians. The town belonged to the Caliph of Egypt, who held two-thirds of it, and to the Emir, or King, of Damascus, who owned the rest. The Christian army, demoralized by the absence of the king, and disheartened by the reverses which of late had attended their efforts, began badly. They murmured at the hardships and continual fighting they had to undergo, nor would they have persisted in the siege but for two things, the presence of the Yenetians, which stimulated their ardour, and the joyful news that the formidable Balak was dead. He was killed by Jocelyn himself, who ran him through with his sword and then cut off his head without knowing who was his adversary. Thus Balak's dream, says the Christian historian, was in a manner fulfilled, though the Arabs, not having a dream to accomplish, tell the story of his death in another way. The people of Ascalon, "like unquiet wasps, always occupied with the desire of doing mischief," seeing that the whole army was away at Tyre, and hoping to catch Jerusalem unguarded, appeared suddenly within a few miles of the city, in great force. After ravaging and pillaging for a time, they were seized with a sudden panic, and all fled back to their town, without any enemy in sight. The siege of Tyre was concluded on the 29th of June, 1124, on the conditions which had now become customary. The Tyrians could go away if they pleased. Those who chose to stay could do so without fear. And the historian tells how, when the treaty of surrender was concluded, Tyrians and Christians visited each other's camp, and admired the siege artillery on the one hand, and the walls and strength of the town on the other. We are therefore approaching the period of what may be called friendly warfare. Godfrey thought an infidel was one with whom no dealings were to be held, to whom no mercy was to be


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