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BLOSS C.A. Heroines of the Crusades


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 

Chronicles of Enguerrand De Monstrelet (Sir John Froissart's Chronicles continuation) in 13 volumes 

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Heroines of the Crusades
page 240

The chief emirs who, attracted by curiosity or admira-tion, visited the court of the British Lion, returned with the most exaggerated accounts of the urbanity and prowess of the gallant " Melech Bic." One morning, at an hour somewhat earlier than his usual levee, Bichard was surprised by a visit from Mestoc, ac-companied by a female closely veiled. ""Welcome, my noble Moor," exclaimed the king, as the Saracen advanced and bowed with the ceremonious obeisance of eastern courtesy. "Heaven bless the chance that hath brought thee hither. Next to a trusty friend, Plantagenet holds in honor a worthy foe." The Saracen gravely replied, "The Melech Bic wrongs the errand of his servant, if he discern not in his ransomed captive, one whom he hath made his friend." " I doubt not the truth of thy saying," replied the king, " since reason and experience teach that ingratitude is in-compatible with true courage." "The chief of the Egyptians is, indeed, thy friend," continued Mestoc ; " but were he twice thy foe, he brings a passport to the heart of the king, for ' from the place of the. beloved, a zephyr hath blown, and thou seest one whose presence is as the breath of the heliotrope.' " Turn-ing to his companion, he lifted her veil, and disclosed the features of Elsiebede. " Elsiebede !" exclaimed the monarch, in astonishment and alarm. " "What of my queen ? of Joanna ? of Eng-land ?" " My royal mistress is in health," replied Elsiebede, "and by this token," handing him a casket, " commendeth her love to her absent lord : and peace resteth upon the house-hold." r "And wherefore comest thou hither? and why under such convoy ?" inquired Bichard. " The errand of my mistress required a faithful messen-ger ; and the chief will explain the mystery of my com-ing," replied the girl. "With a puzzled look, Bichard turned to Mestoc. " It is, BERENGARIA OF NAVARRE. 251

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