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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 421

to account for all phenomena so as not to conflict with this proposition. The unbiased mind of Eleanora often de-tected in his assertions a vagueness of expression which passed for argument, but which evidently imposed less upon his auditors than upon himself. " Nature," said he, " arranges her work in circles : hence is the sky a dome, the earth a convex ball, and each minute atom of a globular form. The seasons roll their perpetual round, and as a ring hath neither beginning nor end, so must the material universe be eternal. The acorn groweth into the oak, and the oak again produceth the acorn ; all outward manifestations are but parts in the great universal machine." Eleanora, who had been attentively regarding an inge-nious invention of the king's, interrupted this tirade, by re-marking, " A few^ months before I left England, I visited the cell of friar Bacon, in Oxford. But I saw nothing in his laboratory so curious and wonderful as this work of my brother's." The philosopher, flattered with the encomium, turned at once to exhibit the design of the machine. She followed his explanation with the greatest apparent interest ; and when he had finished, replied, "In all these curious ar-rangements, I trace the wisdom of my brother ; and it is that which gives me the greatest pleasure ; and when I see the beneficent purposes for which it is designed, I feel a deeper veneration for the mind that could plan so skilfully." She took a bunch of flowers from the hand of Agnes and approached the king. " I have been observing," said she, " the curious arrangement of these frail leaves, five green supporters, five yellow petals, five slender threads, and one central spire. 1 have gathered thousands of them in my rambles, and the same perfect number is found in every one. It has led me to inquire if Nature be not like my brother, a mathematician." The workings of Alphonso's face showed how closely the simple truth of this proposition had driven home. " Na-ture," said he, " is an active principle, whose changes nei- ELEANORA.

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