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BLOSS C.A. Heroines of the Crusades

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BLOSS C.A.
Heroines of the Crusades
page 333



I excommunicate him who has injured the other ; and I absolve the sufferer." Frederic, in revenge, employed his Saracen troops, of which he commanded not a few, in southern Itaty, toravage the dominions of the church, and convinced all his subjects of the wisdom of his former refusals, by taxing them heavi-ly for the expenses of the expedition on which he determin-ed to embark. Finding that Frederic waä thus placing himself in a posture to enlist the sympathies of Christen-dom, the pope prohibited his undertaking the Holy "War till he should be relieved from ecclesiastical censure. The em-peror notwithstanding sailed directly for Acre, and was received with great joy by the Christians. The next ships from Europe brought letters from the pontiff to the patri-arch, repeating the sentence of excommunication, forbid-ding the Templars and Hospitallers to fight under the ban-ner of the son of perdition. In this state of embarrassment, Frederic found his mili-tary operations limited to the suburbs of Acre ; and dwell-ing in the palace, and gazing on the scenes which Violante had so often and so eloquently portrayed, his mind revert-, ed, with a touch of remorseful tenderness, to the enthusi-asm with which she had anticipated a return to her eastern home. The rapture with whioh she had dwelt upon the virtues of the Empress Elsiebede, and her noble son Melech Camel, inspired him with the thought that he might avail himself of the generous friendship entertained for his much injured wife, to further his own plans in Palestine. Acting upon this selfish policy, he opened negotiations with the Sultan of Egypt, now heir to all Saphadin's dominions by the death of Cohr-Eddin. The Saracen emperor lent a gracious ear to the overtures of the successor of Jean de Brienne, and a truce of ten years was concluded between the belligerent powers. Jerusalem, Joppa, Bethlehem and Nazareth, with their appendages, were restored to the Latins. The Holy Sepul-chre was also ceded, and both Christians and Mussulmans, were guaranteed the right to worship in the sacred edifice, ELE ANORA. 349.


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