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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 287

In a circular letter to sovereigns and clergy the pope de-clared that the time had at last arrived when the most hap-py results might be expected from a confederation of the Christian powers. Count la Marche was among the first to hear and obey the mandate of the spiritual head. "With the Duke of Nevers he commanded the French croises that in 1215 sailed for Egypt, where he was actively engaged in the Holy warfare when Isabella visited Valence. The siege of Damietta was carried on with the usual atrocities. Tidings of the death of 'Saphadin weakened the forces of the garrison, and Camel, younger son of Elsiebede, lord of the fertile coun-try of the Nile, was compelled to seek refuge in Arabia. The first success of the crusaders was followed by disaster and discord ; and when after a siege of seventeen months Damietta was taken, they found in pestilence and famine more terrible foes than in the sixty thousand Moslems that had perished beneath their swords. Queen Isabella was seated in her former apartment in the castle of Valence describing to her daughter the person of the young King of England and his noble brother the Prince Richard, and painting to the imagination of the child the charms of the infant Princess Isabella, when the horn of the warder rang out shrill and clear on the evening air. The window of the turret commanded the view of the drawbridge. From that window where, eighteen years be-fore, Isabella had watched with delight for the return of her gay knightly lover, she now beheld wilh palpitating heart the advance of a jaded, weary troop, at whose head rode one whose proud crest drooped as though the inspira-tion of hope had ceased to animate the warrior-frame, and the heart bereft of the blissful fervor of love no longer an-ticipated the sweet guerdon of his lady's smile. A tide of recollections swept over her spirit ; dizzy and faint she sank upon a seat in the embrasure of the window, and veiled her agitation in the curtaining drapery. She heard his tread upon the stair, no longer the elastic step that she had been wont to welcome with the sportive gaiety of a ISABELLA. 299

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