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MATTHEW OF WESTMINSTER
The flowers of history, especially such as relate to the affairs of Britain. Vol. II. A.D. 1066 to A.D. I307.

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MATTHEW OF WESTMINSTER
The flowers of history, especially such as relate to the affairs of Britain. Vol. II. A.D. 1066 to A.D. I307.
page 319



souls. Moreover, about the time of the festival of Saint Michael, the bishop of Rochester died, and because he was accounted a saint, by the management of the king, his body was buried at Westminster. The same year, on the twentyninth of May, Robert de Lexington, the chaplain and counsellor of the lord the king, who had long filled the onice of justiciary, in which he had amassed vast treasures for himself, and filled the king's coffers, departed this life. When, then, this year was ended, twenty-five fifties of years had now elapsed since the era of grace, that is to say, twelve hundred and fifty years. But we must remark, and not pass lightly over the fact, that in none of the twenty-four preceding fifties had so many marvellous things, and so many unprecedented novelties happened, as had happened in this twentyfifth fifty. And there are some historians who assert that so many prodigies and strange events happened not in all the other fifties put together as did come to pass in this one just terminated. For in this fifty, the Tartars, bursting forth from their distant and untraceable abodes, devastated with fatal destruction all the countries of the east, whether belonging to the faithful or to infidels. Also, the admiral Muremelin, the most powerful monarch of the African and Spanish unbelievers, invaded the territories of the Christians, but was defeated, and forced to retreat with his whole army. While Oliver was preaching in Germany, our Lord Jesus Christ, who was crucified, was distinctly seen in the air by the whole people. This year, too, the Greek church renounced its subjection to that of Rome, Babrizat, the most powerful of the Greeks, becoming a schismatic. The city of Damietta, at the entrance of Egypt, a most wealthy, and strongly-fortified, and famous city, was twice taken by the Christians, and twice lost. Several earthquakes took place in England, and there were several instances of the sea overrunning its natural limits to a prodigious degree, by which it inflicted unheard-of injuries on those who lived near it. England was laid under an interdict for seven years, and for an equal length of time was subjected to the horrors of civil war; and at length, by the inactivity of king John, who was at that time king, it was reduced to become a tributary state. The same king John lost Normandy and many other territories beyond the sea, and made England and Ireland subject to pope Innocent the Third, and burdened them with the payment of tribute, and the privileges of the holy


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