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ROGER OF WENDOVER Flowers of history. The history of England from the descent of the saxons to A.D. 1235. vol.1

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ROGER OF WENDOVER
Flowers of history. The history of England from the descent of the saxons to A.D. 1235. vol.1
page 285



280 ROGER OF WENDOVER, [A.D. 1012. oaths and hostages; after which Swejn, king of the Danes, returned to his own country, a.id so the fierceness of the persecution abated for awhile. A sinful dance commenced in disobedience. A.D. 1012. At a certain town in Saxony named Colewic, where is a church of Magnus the martyr, the people having come together for divine service on the vigil of our Lord's nativity, a presbyter named Robert solemnly began the first mass according to custom ; when lo ! fifteen men and three women commenced dancing in the churchyard, and uproariously singing secular songs, to the great impediment of the presbyter, insomuch that the holy solemnity of mass was well nigh lost in the noise of the singers. They were at length commanded by presbyter Robert to be silent, but refused to obey, whereupon he in wrath uttered this imprecation: "May it please our God and St. Magnus, that you may go on singing for a whole year." The words of the priest had such weight, that his son, grasping by the arm his sister who was singing with the rest, could by no means pull her away, but tore her arm from her body. Howbeit not a drop of blood followed ; and she remained a whole year dancing with the rest. The rain did not fall on them; neither were they affected by cold, heat, hunger, thirst, or fatigue ; nor were their garments or shoes worn out ; but they sang like frantic people, and sank into the ground, at first up to their knees, and at last up to their thighs ; and by the will of God a covering was formed over them to protect them from the rain. At length, after the lapse of a year, Herebert, archbishop of Cologne, loosed them from the bond wherewith their hands were held, and reconciled them before the altar of St. Magnus the martyr. The presbyter's daughter with two others expired immediately ; the rest slept three days and nights : some of them afterwards died and were famous for their miracles, while some betrayed their punishment by a trembling in their limbs. Let those read this who are bound by their vows to obedience, that they may learn how great is the sin of disobedience. Another example of disobedience. The emperor Henry, while out hunting on the Lord's day called Quinquagesima, his companions being scattered, came


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