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MATTHEW OF WESTMINSTER The flowers of history, especially such as relate to the affairs of Britain. Vol. I. B.C. 4004 to A.D. 1066.

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MATTHEW OF WESTMINSTER
The flowers of history, especially such as relate to the affairs of Britain. Vol. I. B.C. 4004 to A.D. 1066.
page 440



A~D. 878. KING ALFRED IS BEEBOVED BY ST. NEOT. upon other business, saw that they were scorched, she became indignant, and scolded the king, saying :— " You see the cakes burn, Yet ne'er give them a turn : Though you won't be so slow To eat them, I trow/1 But the king, with a cast-down countenance, being attacked by the reproaches of the woman, not only turned the loaves, but even gave them up to the woman, properly dressed and untouched. But while king Alfred was living in eolitude with the swineherd, many of his soldiers joined him ; and, at the command of the king, they built a fortress there, and strengthened it with towers and bulwarks, and from thence they made constant sallies upon the enemy. It happened at this time, that king Alfred went for the sake of edification to visit the holy Neot, who at that time was leading a solitary life near Hamstoke, And Neot, that man of God, among other familiar conversation, reproved him severely for his wicked actions, and Bet before him the penalties of eternal fire, and showed him that the powerful would suffer mighty torments; and besides all this, he, with prophetic spirit, set before him nearly all the things which were to happen to him :— " You suffer, Ο king," said he, " many hardships at the hands of your enemies, but you shall yet suffer many worse misfortunes still. For, in that kingdom of which you are so proud, and throughout which you rage, exercising an intolerable tyranny over it, you shall be driven by nations who know not Christ, before the face of the Divine Majesty, in whose presence you ought to appear humble though you do not, and you shall escape with difficulty, and hide yourself as a fugitive ; and in this state you shall continue for many days, since your sins require this atonement. But, nevertheless, I, by my prayers bel Pore God, have prevailed that if you draw back from your cruel conduct and fiery lusts, He wnl still stretch over you the countenance of His mercy, and will restore you to your former power and prosperity." And the king, when he had listened humbly to these words of exhortation from the servant of God, and had faithfully promised and given solemn pledges for the amendment of his life, received the bleesing of àie man of God, and returned to the island from which he had come ι forth. Accordingly, the next night, when he was lying in his


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