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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 481



mission, tliere arose from tlie corpses of the men and horses, which were dying in all directions, a number of large black flies, which made their way inside the tents, pavilions, and awnings, and affected the provisions and liquor; and being unable to drive them away from their cups and plates, they caused sudden death amongst them. The king and the legate were in dismay, for if such a great and powerful expedition were to return, with their purpose unaccomplished, the French as well as the Romans would incur much taunting. The chiefs of the army, then, to whom the delay seemed long on account of such numbers of deaths, begged the inferior ranks as well as their chiefs to attack the city; on this such a multitude of troops marched against the city, that, in marching over a bridge which was built over the Rhone, tho bridge was broken, either by the citizens, or by the weight of the troops who were fighting there, and about three thousand men were precipitated into tho rapid stream. Then there arose a cry of exultation from the citizens, but dismay and confusion pervaded the French army. After this the citizens, watching their opportunity, sallied from the city one day in great force when the French were sitting at table eating and drinking, and rushing on them when unprepared for them, slew two thousand of the French, and then returned into the city without loss to themselves, and these sallies they continually made against them. The French king \vas in dismay, and ordered the slain to be thrown into the Rhone, to avoid the stench, for with such a number of dead bodies they had no other burial place. They then made a wide deep trench between them and the city, and the operations of the siege were carried on at a greater distance from it. The legate and the whole assembly of prelates during this time, having no other means of punishment, excommunicated the count of Toulouse, the citizens, and all the inhabitants of the province. The death of Louis the French kinq. At this time I-ouis king of the French, to escape the pestilence which was committing gnat ravages in the camp, retired to a monastery called Montpensier, near the besieged town, to await the capture of the city; at that place Henry count of Champagne came to him, having been employed forty days in the siege, and, according to the French custom, asked


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