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JOHN LORD DE JOINVILLE Memoirs of Louis IX, King of France

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JOHN LORD DE JOINVILLE
Memoirs of Louis IX, King of France
page 63



rnand of tbe beffrois and machines. The king, and the count d'Anjou, who was afterwards king of Sicily, took on them the guard of tbe army, on the side of Babylon ; and the count de Poitiers, with me, seneschal of Champagne, had (he guard on the side towards Damietta. Not long after this, the chief of the Turks, before named, crossed with his army into the island that lies between the Rexi and Damietta branches, where our army was encamped, and formed a line of battle, extending from one bank of the river to the other. The count d'Anjou, who was on the spot, attacked the Turks, and defeated them so completely that they took to flight, and numbers were drowned in each of the branches of the Nile. A large body, however, kept their ground, whom we dared cot attack, on account of their numerous machines, by which they did us great injury with the divers things cast from them. During the attack on the Turks by the count d'Anjou, the count Guy de Ferrois, who was in his company, galloped through the Turkish force, attended by his knights, until they came to another battalion of Saracens, where they performed wonders. But at last he was thrown to the ground with a broken leg, and was led back by two of his knights, supporting him by the arms. You must know there was difficulty in withdrawing the count d'Anjou from this attack, wherein he was frequently in the utmost danger, and was ever after greatly honoured for it Another large body of Turks made an attack on the count de Poitiers and me ; but be assured they were very well received, and served in like manner. It was well for them that they found their way back by which they bad come ; but they left behind great numbers of slain. W e returned safely to our camp without having scarcely lost any of our men. One night the Turks brought forward an engine, called by them la perrier^ a terrible engine to do mischief, and placed it opposite to the chas-chateils, which Sir Walter de Curel and I were guarding by night. From this engine they flung such quantities of Greek fire,* that it was the most horrible sight • This fire was so called, because it was first invented among the


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