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BLOSS C.A. Heroines of the Crusades

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BLOSS C.A.
Heroines of the Crusades
page 403



affairs. In truth, he has for these last years been so occu-pied with the motions of Mars and Jupiter, that he has had little leisure to attend to the movements of his subjects, and, but for what seemeth my un dutiful interposition, our fair Castile would have been one scene of anarchy and con-fusion." " But if my brother desired the repose of private life, he had surely the right to appoint his successor," suggested Eleanora. " Nay, concerning that, men differ in opinion," replied Sancho. " Our ancestors, the Goths, confer the crown upon the second son, in preference to the heirs of the elder brother, and by this right I reign." " But by this right, thou takest from the prince all power," returned the queen. " And wherefore," said Sancho, " should the word of a prince prevail against the will of the people, whose interest no king has a right to sacrifice to his ambition ?" " Certes, there is great semblance of truth in what thou sayest," added Eleanora, thoughtfully ; " and much I won-der me that, while some are born to such high estate, others in heart possessed of noble feelings are doomed to perpetual servitude. My poor brain has been ofttimes sadly puzzled in this matter ; but when I bethink me of the miseries fair England suffered during the rebellion of Leicester, I' con-tent myself to believe the holy writ, ' The powers that be, are ordained of God.' " " Thy scripture well establishes my claim," cried Sancho, laughing heartily. Eleanora'sighed. " Forgettest thou, brave Sancho," said 6he, "that the God who gave to thee the estate and rule of king, (since thou dost so wrest my words to prove thy usur-pation,) forgettest thou that lie hath also ordained, ' Thou shalt honor thy father ?' " " Nay, nay, my most gracious aunt, now thou accusest me beyond my desert. The wise Alphonso is not restrain-ed from his clerkly studies, but—" " He is in prison," interrupted Eleanora. • '., ELEANORA. 419


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