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BLOSS C.A. Heroines of the Crusades

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Sir John Froissart's Chronicles of England, France, Spain and the Ajoining Countries from the latter part of the reign of Edward II to the coronation of Henry IV in 12 volumes 

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BLOSS C.A.
Heroines of the Crusades
page 122



Âdelais sought to hide her sorrow and her wrongs in the seclusion of a convent ; but her brother, the valiant Count Thibault of Champagne, was not inclined to suffer the in-dignity in silence. Such, however, was Eleanor's power over the plastic mind of her husband, that the count ap-pealed in vain to the sympathy or justice of the king. Finding that his remonstrance could not reach the royal1 ear, he presented his cause before the pope, who compelled* Vermandois to put away the guilty Petronilla, and take' back the injured sister of Champagne. The repudiated wife enraged at her own dishonor, and incensed at the undissem-bled joy with which Vermandois exchanged her dazzling graces, for the long-regretted charms of the weeping recluse, again had recourse to Eleanor. The queen, not' less vindictive than her sister, and more practised in diplo-macy, succeeded in fanning an ancient feud between Louis' and Count Thibault, into the flame of war. The king in-vaded Champagne at the head of a large army, and com-menced a devastating progress through the province. The| town of Vitry, strongly walled and fortified, for a long time resisted the royal forces ; but the queen, whose ap-prehensions of the temperate counsels of Suger, prompted' her to accompany her husband upon every occasion, pri-vately commissioned a body of Gascons to set fire to the town at the very moment of its surrender. The flames spread from house to house, and finally extended to the cathedral, and thirteen hundred persons who had taken refuge there, were burned to death. The king stung by the cries of his perishing subjects, exerted himself for their rescue, but in vain ; and the horrors of the scene made such a fearful impression on his mind, as seriously to affect his health. The vision of his lamented father, repeating in solemn tones, " Remember, my son, that royalty is a public trust, for the exercise of which a rigorous account will be exacted by Him who has the sole disposal of crowns* and of sceptres," haunted his slumbers and destroyed his rest. Queen Eleanor journeyed with him from one holy' place to another, to entreat the prayers of pious monks in ELEANOR.


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