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Geoffrey de Vinsauf
Itinerary of Richard I and others to the Holy Land
advice of his council, sent orders to King Richard to take down his standards, and substitute those of France, as an acknowledgment of his superiority. King Richard, indignant at this command, considering what previously occurred, and bearing in mind the rights of their fellowship, sent no answer, lest he should seem to surrender his right, and the victory should be ascribed not only to one who had been inactive, but to a perjured adversary. At the intercession of mediators, however, the anger of King Richard was at length appeased; an end was put to their wrangling, and yielding to the soothings of his friends, with some difficulty, he, who was held invincible, being overcome by his foes, gave way to the request of the king of France, viz., that he should deliver into his custody the towers he had taken, and place in them guards of both nations, until they should learn the sentiments of King Tancred as to what had been done; and he who
remained angry and obdurate to threats and boastings was moved by prayers and soothing. The standards of both were, therefore, raised above the walls of the city, until he should try the consistency of the king of France, and proved his friendship.
Chapter XVIII. - How messengers were sent to King Tancred to demand satisfaction and the restoration of the queen’s dowry, and how the king of France sends secretly a contrary message.
It was therefore decreed by common counsel, that King Richard should send messengers to Tancred, king of Sicily, to require satisfaction for the enormous outrage committed by his people, and to ascertain his intentions in regard to what had occurred. Moreover, King Richard commanded King Tancred to give his sister, the queen of Sicily, a sufficient dowry, and the portion of the king her husband’s treasure which belonged to her by right, as well as the table of gold, which ought to be equally shared with the wife of him who had possessed it. The duke of Burgundy and Robert de Sabloel, and some others, whose names are lost, were the messengers appointed for this business. Meanwhile, the king of France weighing in his mind the greatness of King Richard, and repining from envy, began to raise a question about the plunder of the city, demanding his portion, according to the covenant they had entered into. Giving vent, therefore, to arrogant and contumelious speeches about these things, because King Richard sternly refused his demand, he ceased not to irritate his spirit to passion by sly insinuations and opprobrious taunts; and he hesitated not to transgress the terms of the covenant which had been entered into between them, and to shew the hollowness of his friendship. Whereupon King Richard, more from indignation than from any other feeling, determined to reject his friendship, and ordered his ships to be ready to depart with all their baggage; for he had rather, under the guidance and direction of the Lord, proceed alone with his own men to the accomplishment of his pilgrimage, than have any dealings with an envious man; according to the common proverb, "It is better to be alone than to have a bad companion." When, however, this was known to the king of
France, the latter procured, by means of mediators, the renewal of their broken friendship and their association as before, with the condition that every thing which was gained hereafter should be equally divided.
Chapter XIX. - How King Tancred made an ambiguous reply, on which the king of England was inflamed with anger; and how the Lombards refused his men provisions.
Meanwhile the messengers, in discharge of the business of their mission, inquired the sentiments of King Tancred on the matters in question. But the king replied in ambiguous terms, asserting that he would give satisfaction to the kings by advice of the nobles of the land in proper time, place, and manner, upon all the subjects specified. It was reported that the king of France had by letter exhorted King Tancred not to yield to the demands of the king of England, but to shew himself firm in defending his right in every thing, with the assurance that he would not take part with King Richard against him, but would be faithful to him. If such a message was sent, there was an evidence of it something like the proverb; for King Tancred loaded the messengers of the king of France with presents, while he did not give those of the king of England so much as an egg. Therefore the messengers returned, and when they had reported their answer to the kings, King Richard replied, "There is no need of much talking or long speeches; since King Tancred will not give satisfaction of his own accord, I will endeavour and labour my utmost to correct his faults myself." These quarrels restored the courage of the natives, who. incited by the king of France, endeavoured to injure King Richard and his men as much as they could, and prohibited the supplying of provisions necessary for so great an army; and ordered that nothing should be exposed for sale, in order that they might thus be compelled to submit themselves to the
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