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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.2

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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.2
page 407



ROGER OF WENDOVER, [A.B . 1218. thon landed and took possession of this hostile land without bloodshed ; a few Saracen knights however met them, when a certain Frieslander, kneeling with bis right knee on the ground, guarded himself with bis shield in his left hand, and shook his lance and sword with his right. Λ Saracen who beheld him thought that he was in sport, but being suddenly wounded by the Frieslander, the knight and horse were struck to the ground, the others taking to flight ; and thus the army of the faith measured out their camp between the coast and the banks of the Nile, and there pitched their tents without obstruction. God also wrought the following miracle for his faithful people; the water of the river near the sea, which at their first arrival was sweet to the taste, afterwards became salt as far as Casale, which is a mile above Damietta. After the arrival of the Christians there was a total eclipse of the moon, which the Christians interpreted to denote the defeat of the Saracens, for they attribute great prophetic influence to the increase and decrease of that luminary.* Of the siege of the toicer of Damietta on the river Kite. After this the followers of Christ saw in the middle of the river Nile, not far from Damietta, a high and handsome tower strongly built of stone, from which an immensely thick iron chain was extended across the river to the city which stood on the other bank of it. It was the opinion of all that this tower ought to be reduced before laying siege to Damietta, but the Frieslanders, with their usual impatience, crossed the Nile and took away the horses of the Saracens, and, wishing to pitch their camp on the further bank of the river, they stood fighting against the Saracens, who came from the city to attack them ; they were however recalled by the patriarch on their oath of obedience, because it seemed to the chiefs of the Christians to be disadvantageous to leave behind them a tower filled with pagans. The chiefs of the army of Christ, though anxious to take possession of this tower, saw that it could not be reduced by hunger on account • Paris here (jives η letter sent hy pope Honoritis to the Enslish king, urging him to the practice of virtue, &c.; but we forbear to insert it, as those letters, although they might have been interesting to those of former times, are not of the least interest to us of the present day.—ED.


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