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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 406



ing them,, and killing more than five thousand cavalry, amongst whom was the Grand Master of the Templars, The bodies of the Franks lay in such numbers on the field of battle that the Muslims were much annoyed by the stench, and the soldiers were employed for some days in throwing the carcasses into the sea. Saladin now dismissed the Egyptian contingent, bidding them return in the spring, and both sides prepared for the winter, which was already setting in with great severity. The Franks fortified their camp, and dug a fosse round the town of Acre, extending from sea to sea. The Sultan had, in the meantime, removed to his old camp at Kharubeh, where the heavy baggage lay. The news that the Emperor of Germany, Frederick Barbarossa, was en route for Syria stimulated both parties to further exertions, and the warlike preparations went on with greater activity than ever. On the 13th of December the Egyptian fleet—which the Sultan had ordered to be prepared on the first landing of the Franks at Acre—arrived, with a complement of more than ten thousand men. This reinforcement gave great confidence to the Muslim troops, and constant raids were made by the new comers upon the Christian lines. The arrival of a Frank ship, laden with women, about this time, seems to have demoralized both armies; for the ladies appear to have been somewhat indifferent as to religion and nationality, and to have bestowed their favours upon Christian and Muslim alike, according as one or the other happened to meet them on landing. The Arab writers, however, speak of many Christian women, who were animated by the true Crusading spirit ; and it was no uncommon occurrence to find upon the field of battle, or amongst the prisoners, many champions of the softer sex. The new year, A.D. 1190, came in, and found things in statu quo, the town besieged by the Franks, and the latter in turn hemmed in by the Sultan's forces.


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