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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 425



ance to marshal the troops, distinguishing who were to march in the van and who in the rear. Meanwhile, our princes occupied all the plains in front of the city and the mountains, apparently to the distance of about two miles from the city ; and when the trumpet sounded they marched forwards to meet the enemy ; the three first divisions charging them with sword and lance, preceded by the footmen, who with long-bows and cross-bows, plied the enemy therewith, and made a way for the heavy charge of the cavalry that were following them. At length, all the divisions, except that of Boamund, were engaged, and the Turks, having lost numbers of their men, were beginning to be disordered, and to take to flight, when Soliman, coming up from the parts towards the sea with two thousand men, assailed Boamund so violently in the rear, and discharged such a cloud of arrows, that they almost covered the whole line ; then casting aside their bows they continued the fight with swords and mallets so fiercely, that Boamund must have given way before them had not Godfrey and Tancred come up, and with energy not sufficiently to be admired, tnrned the tide of blood and death upon the enemy. Soliman then tried another device, and set fire to some hay and straw, prepared for the purpose, which, though it gave forth little flame, yet concealed everything around with a dense smoke. Under cover of this vapour the enemy slew several of our footmen ; but after a time, God, who rules the winds, turned the smoke upon the enemy, who, blinded and almost suffocated by it, took to flight, followed by the Christian soldiers, who drove them furiously back upon their disordered lines, and slew them without mercy even to their tents, where they knew their principal strength was assembled. There the Turks resisted with all their valour, and a terrible conflict took place ; brazen helmets rung like anvils under the blows, sparks of fire were struck forth from the collision of steel and steel, and the clash of swords was like thunder ; men's brains were shed upon the ground, coats of mail were cracked to pieces, and the entrails of those who wore them poured out upon the ground ; the horses sweated with fatigue, and not a moment's pause was allowed their riders, the armies were met almost close together; while some of them fought hand to hand, foot to foot, and with their bodies touching one another, con


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